The Federal Reserve slashed a key short-term interest rate to effectively zero today, and signaled that it will “employ all available tools” to try to arrest the nation’s economic freefall. Continue reading
For over a month the U.S. automobile industry has been on the verge of collapse along with virtually all the automobile-related businesses. Altogether, they employ an estimated 3 million workers. The blame for this crisis has universally been attributed to upper management at the Big Three auto manufacturers.
Many politicians, auto industry analysts, and media reporters claim the auto industries were not sufficiently competitive, arguing they relied too heavily on the production of SUV’s or other vehicles with low fuel efficiency. In addition, virtually all Democratic and Republican politicians parroted business “experts,” claiming the auto giants let labor costs get out of control. The litany goes on and on. Continue reading
The Federal Reserve has bluntly refused a request by a major US financial news service to disclose the recipients of more than $2 trillion of emergency loans from US taxpayers and to reveal the assets the central bank is accepting as collateral. Their lawyers resorted to the bizarre argument that they did so to protect ‘trade secrets.’ Is the secret that the US financial system is de facto bankrupt?
The latest Fed move is further indication of the degree of panic and lack of clear strategy within the highest ranks of the US financial institutions. Unprecedented Federal Reserve expansion of the Monetary Base in recent weeks sets the stage for a future Weimar-style hyperinflation, perhaps before 2010. Continue reading
The US-based advocacy group has officially partnered with the digital media powerhouse in an effort to combat hate speech and other forms of abuse. Continue reading
December 15, 2008 “ICH” – As the printing presses for the bailouts run at full speed, those in power are no longer even pretending that the new giveaways will fix our problems. Now that we are used to rewarding failure with taxpayer-funded bailouts, we are being told that this is “just a start,” more funds will inevitably be needed for more industries, and that things would be much worse had we done nothing.
The updated total bailout commitments add up to over $8 trillion now. This translates into a monetary base increase of 75 percent over the last two months. This money does not come from some rainy day fund tucked away in the budget somewhere – it is created from thin air, and devalues every dollar in circulation. Dumping money on an economy, as they have been doing, is not the same as dumping wealth. In fact, it has quite the opposite effect. Continue reading
December 15, 2008 “Truthdig” — Israel’s siege of Gaza, largely unseen by the outside world because of Jerusalem’s refusal to allow humanitarian aid workers, reporters and photographers access to Gaza, rivals the most egregious crimes carried out at the height of apartheid by the South African regime. It comes close to the horrors visited on Sarajevo by the Bosnian Serbs. It has disturbing echoes of the Nazi ghettos of Lodz and Warsaw.
“This is a stain on what is left of Israeli morality,” I was told by Richard N. Veits, the former U.S. ambassador to Jordan who led a delegation from the Council on Foreign Relations to Gaza to meet Hamas leaders this past summer. “I am almost breathless discussing this subject. It is so myopic. Washington, of course, is a handmaiden to all this. The Israeli manipulation of a population in this manner is comparable to some of the crimes that took place against civilian populations fifty years ago.” Continue reading
The U.S. is planning to set up military bases in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, according to Russia’s head of the General Staff. He said Washington already has forces in Bulgaria and Romania that can become operational within hours, raising concern in Moscow.
Speaking at the Academy of Military Science, General Nikolay Makarov also pointed out that the U.S. is prompting Georgia and Ukraine to join NATO. Continue reading
A recent report produced by the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Institute warns that the United States may experience massive civil unrest in the wake of a series of crises which it has termed “strategic shock.”
The report, titled Known Unknowns: Unconventional Strategic Shocks in Defense Strategy Development, also suggests that the military may have to be used to quell domestic disorder.
“Widespread civil violence inside the United States would force the defense establishment to reorient priorities in extremis to defend basic domestic order and human security,” the report, authored by [Ret.] Lt. Col. Nathan Freir, reads. Continue reading
We all know economic depression here, and some of us have an inkling about what is coming. The governments vacillate between spewing gloom and doom and ridiculous ‘happy fun clown time’ gibberish at the great unwashed masses depending upon whether they want fools to buy into the stock market at that particular time to make certain fat cats even richer, or they want those fools to sell and lose almost everything. Continue reading
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Homes in the United States have lost trillions of dollars in value during 2008, with nearly 11.7 million American households now owing more on their mortgage than their homes are worth, real estate website Zillow.com said on Monday.
U.S. homes are set to lose well over $2 trillion in value during 2008, according to an analysis of recent Zillow Real Estate Market Reports. Continue reading