30 Aug 2012

Economic Warfare - Coast To Coast AM with Jim Norman

Sabotaging the other Troika in Greece’s future? - The Slog

Athens sources accuse ‘Coalition partnersof plot to sabotage alliance with Israel and Cyprus

Venizelos…. Fifth Columnist?
Sources close to a senior Opposition Greek politician today accused elements within Pasok of plotting to undermine the progress of the energy and exploitation deal between Athens, Tel Aviv and Nicosia.
Extract from a recent Slogpost:
‘Everything is connected. Greece is connected to Cyprus, which is connected to Turkey – and massively connected to EU debt and the Aegean, which is connected to energy and rare earths, which is connected to Israel, which is unpleasantly connected to Syria and Iran, which are connected to the American desire for Sunnis to triumph, which is connected to the fact that Saudi Arabia is overwhelmingly Sunni.’
From the Greek mainstream newspaper Katherimini today:-
‘The governments of Greece, Cyprus and Israel will begin discussions in September about the exporting of natural gas quantities to western
European countries, Cypriot Commerce and Industry Minister Neoklis Sylikiotis announced on Thursday in Nicosia.

South African miners charged with murder of colleagues shot by police

The 270 miners arrested over this month's violent strikes in South Africa have been charged with the murder of their 34 colleagues who were shot dead by police

The murder charge – and associated charges for attempted murder of 78 miners who were injured in the shooting – was brought by the state under little-known "common purpose" legislation previously used by the apartheid government.
Frank Lesenyego, spokesman for South Africa's National Prosecuting Authority, said the "technical" charge placed responsibility for any fatal confrontation with armed police on whoever challenged them.
It was brought despite the fact that Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega has confirmed that the 34 slain miners died after police shot at them with live ammunition at the mine owned by Lonmin, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
"This is under common law, where people are charged with common purpose in a situation where there are suspects with guns or any weapons and they confront or attack the police and a shooting takes place and there are fatalities," Mr Lesenyego said.
The state also persuaded the magistrate hearing the high-profile case to delay a bail hearing for the miners until September 6. Until then, they will remain in cramped custody in three police stations in the area.
No police officers have yet been charged by the shooting

Jim Grant on the Gold Standard and the Fed’s Hall of Mirrors

US 'Police Officer' Kicking Unarmed Defenseless Man In The Throat!

The Unintended 'Chronic' Consequence Of ECB Bond Buying

Tyler Durden's picture We destroyed the myth that the LTRO would not in fact stigmatize bank balance sheets when it was first introduced as the encumbrance was evident from the start - though took the market a while to comprehend and reprice (exuberant on the new-found liquidity optics). The expectations that the ECB will embark on a new scheme of sovereign debt purchases, implicitly funding governments - no matter how many times they tell us that it is to ensure transmission mechanisms flow, have three objectives or rationales, according to Goldman's Huw Pill: Easing private financing conditions through monetary expansion, Financing governments, and/or Reactivating private markets. However, there is one glaring unintended consequence of this 'aid' - the risk exists that well-intentioned sovereign debt purchases result in perverse incentives and a perpetuation of chronic fiscal and structural problems (much as Bernanke's band-aids have eased the fiscal pressure on our own government and led us further down the rabbit hole). The lack of political legitimacy and blunting of incentives for more fundamental consolidation and reform to take place can only turn the acute pain of the moment in Spain into a truly chronic problem for Europe as a whole - be careful what you wish for.

Goldman Sachs: Three Rationales For Sovereign Debt Purchases
We expect the ECB to announce a new scheme of sovereign debt purchases aimed at reactivating and reintegrating Euro financial markets to ensure monetary policy transmission. We compare this rationale with other motivations for central bank purchases of government debt. In the end, purchases will serve several ends. The risk exists that well-intentioned sovereign debt purchases result in perverse incentives and a perpetuation of chronic fiscal and structural problems.

Carbon Tax: Italian miner slits wrist on TV to protest coal mine shutdown (GRAPHIC VIDEO, PHOTOS)

A Sardinian miner has slashed his wrist in a live TV address, in protest against the closing of a local facility. Some 100 workers barricaded themselves in front of the mine, which is packed with almost 700 kilograms of explosives.
­The incident took place during a press conference held underground.
"If someone here has decided to the kill miners' families, ladies and gentlemen, we'll cut ourselves, we'll cut ourselves," 49-year-old Stefano Meletti said as he slashed his wrist in front of reporters.
"We cannot take it anymore. We cannot! We cannot! It’s what we have to do," Reuters quoted him as saying.
The workers have staged a sit-in 400 meters underground since barricading themselves in the mine on Sunday night. The mine contains an estimated 700 kilograms of explosives, and the miners have vowed not to leave until the government promises to assist them.
The miners are protesting a shortage of funding for the coal industry, which has left them unemployed. They are calling for Italian energy corporation Enel to halt the shutdown of the last coal mine in the country.
The workers are pressing the government to combine a mining and a carbon-capture project to save their jobs, but authorities have already denied their pleas, claiming the project would cost some 250 million euros a year.
"That's almost 200,000 euros per miner. It's an unsustainable cost,"

Fascist Gulag USA: Kidnapped Marine Speaks Out Against Government Tyranny "Jesus would have been investigated as a terrorist!" + Journalists Intimidated For Exposing TSA + Smart Pills: Edible Tracking Grid

In his first public comments since being kidnapped by authorities over political posts on Facebook, former Marine Brandon Raub tells John Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute that he is scared for his country.

Some clear thinking on the debt

: Rome, Italy - If you haven’t heard yet, the United States of America just hit $16 trillion in debt yesterday. On a gross, nominal basis, this makes the US, by far, the greatest debtor in the history of the world. 

It took the United States government over 200 years to accumulate its first trillion dollars of debt. It took only 286 days to accumulate the most recent trillion dollars of debt. 200 years vs. 286 days. This portends two key points: 

1. Anyone who thinks that inflation doesn’t exist is a complete idiot; 
2. To say that the trend is unsustainable is a massive understatement. 

At an average interest rate of 2.130%, Uncle Sam will shuffle $340 billion out the door just in interest payments this year… and it’s a number that’s only going up. To put it in context, China owns so much US debt that the INTEREST INCOME they receive from the Treasury Department is nearly enough to fund their entire military budget. 

It’s rather disgusting when you think about it. 

Yet when you look at the raw numbers, there is no sign of improvement anywhere on the horizon. Last year, the Treasury Department brought in about $2.3 trillion in tax revenue. They spent $2.9 trillion JUST on -mandatory- programs like Social Security and Medicare, plus the very sacrosanct defense budget. 

In other words, the US government was $600 billion dollars in the hole before paying a dime of interest on the debt, or paying the light bill at the White House. In fact the government’s own numbers reflect a budget deficit through the end of the decade, i.e. the debt level is only going to get higher. These are their own figures.

More join South African strike as autopsies show miners were shot in the back

By Julie Hyland: Many more have joined the strike at South Africa’s Lonmin platinum mine in Marikana, scene of the brutal police massacre of 34 workers on August 16.
London-based Lonmin—the world’s third largest platinum producer—said that just 13 percent of its workforce reported for duty on Monday, down from 30 percent last week. Operations have ceased, with just one in 10 of the company’s 28,000-strong workforce attending.
Several thousand reportedly gathered at Wonderkop hill outside the mine, near Johannesburg. Miners have vowed to not return to work until their demands are met.
Some 3,000 rock drillers have been on strike for over a fortnight. Working in extremely hazardous conditions for just $500 a month and housed in squalid camps, they are defying the company’s threat of mass dismissals in their fight for a 300 percent pay increase.
Operations at the nearby Canadian-based Eastern Platinum group (Eastplats) were also halted on Monday, as miners blocked drivers from bussing other workers into the site.
The hardening resistance came amid reports that autopsies prove most miners slain were shot in the back as they attempted to escape the police ambush on August 16. Johannesburg’s Star cited an unnamed source involved in the investigation stating, “A lot of them were shot in the back and the bullets exited through their chests.”

Syrian group with close ties to FSA terrorists openly arms rebels with help of U.S.

By Madison Ruppert: The recently established Syrian Support Group (SSG), a United States-based pro-Free Syrian Army (FSA) group housed just three blocks away from the White House, is openly showing their support for the terrorist FSA like never before.
The SSG was just established this April as a non-profit and thanks to a special license from the Treasury Department, they can now openly provide the Syrian opposition with funding to purchase heavy weaponry which, according to The New York Times, includes “antiaircraft and antitank missiles.”
The individuals involved in this organization are far from detached from the Obama administration, which is hardly surprising. Writing for the Times, Steven Lee Myers reports that the SSG members “regularly consult with State Department officials, including the American ambassador to Syria, Robert S. Ford, who has been based in Washington since the embassy in Damascus closed in February.”
This specific connection with Ambassador Ford is also far from surprising considering the fact that he has been involved with openly supporting the Syrian opposition, even meeting with rebel leaders in Syria before he was essentially forced to flee back to the United States.
Hilariously, The New York Times attempts to paint a picture of the Obama administration taking a back seat in the crusade against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Firestorms & Currency Twisters - By Jim Willie CB

Begin with a preface to a meaningful event that could change the entire US landscape, a redux of what happened four years ago.  Consider the next Wall Street financial firm failure. It is in progress. It is not avoidable. It will have numerous ramifications. It will open the door to account thefts, the burial of documents, the ransack of undesired leveraged positions, the concealment of wrecked derivatives, and a path toward the merger of surviving (selected core) firms. It will urge an extreme defensive posture. Back in 2008, both Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers fell. The former because they had too much gold exposure with anti-US$ hedges. The latter because they led in mortgage exposure. Both failures were greatly exploited. My favorite item was the reload given to JPMorgan on a quiet Saturday morning (convened at 6am no less) at the Bankruptcy court of Manhattan. The shadowy syndicate titan was handed $138 billion to handle the private accounts from the fallen banks. Instead, the funds represented a reload for JPMorgan to continue their gold suppression game. Of course, they have been defending American freedom with vigor, preserving the integrity of the US banking system, and assuring the way of life in the nation, while leeching $billions from the public trough. Since their grant, the unassailable JPM has seen fit to gobble private accounts at both MFGlobal and PFG-Best, with regulatory blessing as the courts sprinkled fascist holy water.