Daily Archives: August 12, 2012

Stratfor emails reveal secret, widespread TrapWire surveillance system

Former senior intelligence officials have created a detailed surveillance system more accurate than modern facial recognition technology — and have installed it across the US under the radar of most Americans, according to emails hacked by Anonymous.

Every few seconds, data picked up at surveillance points in major cities and landmarks across the United States are recorded digitally on the spot, then encrypted and instantaneously delivered to a fortified central database center at an undisclosed location to be aggregated with other intelligence. It’s part of a program called TrapWire and it’s the brainchild of the Abraxas, a Northern Virginia company staffed with elite from America’s intelligence community.


Blink! U.S. Debt Just Grew by $11 Trillion

What are the numbers on the real national debt? With a projected $11 trillion
fiscal gap in the past year, it looks more and more unlikely that this massive
debt will ever be able to be repaid.


Social Media Creates Modern Day Nastazi Spies for the Global Elite

Facebook and its infiltration into our modern society is
now the barometer of whether or not a person is “suspicious” or not. Some
psychologists are even suggesting that not having a Facebook profile means that
you are a psychopath. The link between the Batman shooter and the Norwegian mass
murderer was their lack of Facebook profiles. In fact, this may “be the first
sign that you are a mass murderer.”


Microsoft and Bloomberg Collaborate on Sophisticated Pre-Crime Technology

Michael Bloomberg, Mayor for New York and Raymond Kelly,
police commissioner, are collaborating with Microsoft to create pre-crime and
counterterrorism technology to aid federal intelligence and local law
enforcement agencies domestic and international. The Domain Awareness System
(DAS) will be a very sophisticated software technology that aggregates and
analyzes public information in real time that will produce comprehensive reports
to be used by NYPD to ascertain potential threats and pre-crime activity.


Behind the Scenes in the Libor Interest Rate Scandal

What are the details of the Libor scandal? Is it possible that it is one of the
largest cases of fraudulent manipulation by bankers in history? Should we
question what else could be being manipulated in light of this corruption?


Only 24.6 Percent Of All Jobs In The United States Are Good Jobs

Do you want to know why it seems like good jobs are very rare in the United
States today? It is because good jobs are very rare in the
United States today. According to a paper that was just released by the Center
for Economic and Policy Research, only 24.6 percent of
all American jobs qualified as “good jobs” in 2010. Over the past several
decades, there has been increasing pressure on corporations to reduce expenses
and increase corporate profits. One of the biggest expenses that any corporation
faces is labor. Large corporations all over the globe are in an endless race to
gain a competitive advantage by pushing labor costs as low as possible.
Sometimes this is done by using technology.


DSM-V To Rename Gender Identity Disorder ‘Gender Dysphoria’

The newest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical
Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM, will replace the diagnostic term “Gender
Identity Disorder” with the term “Gender Dysphoria,” according to the Associated


Economic Death Spiral

If I said an economist said that the American economy
was heading into a “death spiral,” most people would likely think I was
referring to Peter Schiff, Bob Murphy or someone from the Mises Institute. They
would be wrong. Reuters reports Richard Duncan, formerly of the World Bank said,
“After a four-decade-long, $50 trillion expansion of credit, if credit now
begins to contract, the debt-deflation death spiral of the kind described by
Irving Fisher would destroy our civilization. Austerity is death.” Whether
Duncan is right or wrong about how to proceed, the economy will eventually
collapse. The question is not “How do we stop it?” The question is “Are you


Elliott Management: We Make This Recommendation To Our Friends: If You Own US Debt Sell It Now


Every now and then we prefer to sit back and let some of the smartest money speak, especially when said smart money agrees with us. In this case, we hand the podium over to none other than Paul Singer’s Elliott Management, which after starting with $1.3 million in 1977 was at $19.8 billion most recently. No expert networks, no high frequency trading, no “information arbitrage”, no crony capitalism and pseudo monopolies of scale, and most certainly no bailouts: Singer did it all the old fashioned way: by picking undervalued assets and watching them appreciate. The timing is opportune because while Elliott has much to say about virtually everything in their latest 20 pages Q2 letter, it is the billionaire’s sentiment vis-a-vis US Treasury debt that may be most critical, and may be the catalyst that resulted in today’s abysmal 10 Year bond auction. To wit: “long-term government debt of the U.S., U.K., Europe and Japan probably will be the worst-performing asset class over the next ten to twenty years. We make this recommendation to our friends: if you own such debt, sell it now. You’ve had a great ride, don’t press your luck. From here it is basically all risk, with very little reward.” There is little that can be misinterpreted in the bolded statement. And while many have taken the other side of the Fed over the past 3 years, few have dared to stand against Paul Singer because if there is one person whose opinion matters above most, certainly above that of the Chairsatan, it is his.

More deep thoughts from Elliott:

On QE and the nanny state:

  • Printing money and overstaffing government offices may look like growth for a period of time, but it is actually the road to poverty, corruption and, ultimately, political upheaval.

On regulation:

  • Opaque, overleveraged and vulnerable Financial Institutions which need to be propped up by the implicit or explicit guarantee of sovereigns does not make for a solid financial plumbing system for the global economy…this is a formula for power entrenchment, favoritism and shady deals behind closed doors.

On Dodd-Frank:

  • Not only will it fail to make the system safer, but we believe it will likely be an actual accelerant of the next financial crisis
  • Dodd-Frank was supposed to “fix” the American financial system and end “too big to fail.” Unfortunately, the law, born in a political steamroller, does the exact opposite: it will be the accelerant of the next crisis.
  • The 2008 crisis was episodic and took a while to get rolling. The next one could well be a black hole, and Dodd-Frank will bear responsibility for that.

On why Americans are angry:

  • The government, lacking deep understanding of these firms, wants to pretend that their gigantic efforts (most notably Dodd-Frank) actually fixed the situation. But we believe that citizens are angry at what their guts tell them (correctly, basically) about the special treatment and riskiness of Financial Institutions.

On public data reporting:

  • Decades ago, the balance sheets of the Financial Institutions contained most of the information you needed to know to understand their risks. Today the picture is profoundly different, predominantly due to the growth of leverage through derivatives….As a result, there is no major Financial Institution today whose financial statements provide a meaningful clue about the risks of the firm’s entire panoply of assets and liabilities including derivatives, nor how the firm’s performance, or even survival, will be affected by market movements in the future.

On leverage:

  • Including derivatives, nearly all the world’s largest Financial Institutions are levered 50-100 times (not 10-20 as reflected on their balance sheets), so the exact composition of their derivatives books is essential to an understanding of their risks and stability….no hedge fund is remotely as leveraged as the Financial Institutions, and no hedge fund actually had to be rescued during the crisis.

On European banks:

  • European institutions are in worse shape than before. Not only is their leverage (including derivatives) still at pre-crash levels, but they are choking on vast holdings of questionable sovereign debt which regulators more or less forced on them with lenient risk-weightings.
  • These banks are stuffed with paper that private investors would not buy, as part of the “three-card Monte” shuffle that characterizes the European banking/sovereign system today.

On “peak fragility” in the bond and stock market:

  • People are still buying bonds despite pitifully low yields because, well, they continue to go up in price, albeit in a self-reinforcing process goosed by central bank and momentum buying. When these forces exhaust themselves, the reversal could and should be swift and large.
  • A decade ago, stocks were overpriced, but institutions who owned them were generally happy… Stocks looked predictable and safe at the very moment that they were maximally unsafe. That is where long-term bonds of these four currency blocs (euro, U.S., U.K. and Japan) now stand.

On “safety”:

  • “Safe haven” could be the two most expensive and painful words for investors in the financial lexicon this year.

On market sentiment:

  • Global financial markets currently feel like they are in a period of calm before a storm, possibly centered on the European situation. The problem is that no one can foresee when the storm will make landfall, or how severe it will be.

On why Europe is making one wrong decision after another:

  • Raising taxes to confiscatory levels (75% top rates are absurd and self-defeating), lowering already-too-low retirement ages, making it hard or impossible to fire people (which obviously discourages hiring them in the first place), increasing the scope of regulation and making it more complicated and subject to greater discretion by hostile, inadequately informed regulators, and making threatening noises at every turn about “the rich”, are the precise opposite of the actions and statements that policymakers should make to attract businesses and encourage expansions of existing businesses.
  • Nobody is forced to locate a business in Europe, and in fact capital flight today from several countries is already large and relentless.

On the future of Europe:

  • Since all of the euro bloc surprises in the last couple of years have been negative, and since the answer to every question about the ultimate cost of preserving the euro is “more than you thought yesterday,” the metaphor of a slow-motion train wreck seems quite appropriate.
  • The overall situation is not going sideways or up. It is drifting down.

On Socialists – in this case in France, but applicable everywhere:

  • The Socialists are unlikely to be terribly successful at preventing the destruction of jobs, but they may be all too effective, however unintentionally, at stifling job creation.

On tax policy:

  • Dramatic increases in taxes and regulation, together with a repeatedly punitive tone, are understandably extrapolated by capitalists and investors as indicators of hostility toward business and profits. The societal loss from the business decisions occasioned by such signals is self-reinforcing. Businesspeople sitting on their hands leads to lower growth and more angry rhetoric and hostile actions by government.

On the lack of job creation:

  • Since the top 20% of taxpayers (which includes a great number of people making less than billions and even millions) pay the overwhelming bulk of taxes, this promise to raise taxes has not exactly generated enthusiasm or jobs.

On US (small) business uncertainty:

  • Under ACA and the scheduled rise in overall federal income tax rates, one of the largest aggregate tax increases in American history is scheduled for five months from now. This is occurring at the same time that several strapped large states are also raising their top tax brackets.

On shifts in paradigms:

  • Businessmen are inherently optimistic, typically always looking for reasons to do business, expand and innovate.
  • Historical experience shows that when established perceptions are wrong, it can take a long time for contradictory data points to accumulate before such perceptions start to adjust and to cause alterations of behavior. However, at a certain moment, shifts in perceptions and trends could be abrupt, especially given modern tools of instant communication.
  • Today the hostility of the American and European governments to private enterprise, wealth and profits is used by those governments as  vote-buying tactics. The impact on growth and jobs is already visible, and capital flight (already seemingly underway in France) may accelerate unless the policies, and tone, change.

On the US welfare state:

  • If [Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and government pensions] are not reformed, such entitlements simply cannot be paid as promised, regardless of the levels of future growth or taxes on “the rich” or anyone else.
  • The numbers are just too big, the result of a form of corruption: politicians made big promises in exchange for votes, not worrying about whether the promises could be fulfilled.

On the US “recovery”

  • Three and a half years after the bust, the massive spending, guarantees and money printing have left America with 8.2% unemployment (which vastly understates the actual level, since millions of people have simply left the workforce, while others have migrated from receiving unemployment benefits to getting long-term disability payments), sluggish growth, $5 trillion in additional federal debt, and $3 trillion of freshly-printed dollars on the Fed’s balance sheet. This is not a success. This is a national tragedy, in a society in which the world’s greatest engine of prosperity has  historically been fueled by innovation, optimism, entrepreneurship, flexibility and opportunity.

On Congress handing over the decisionmaking process to the Fed:

  • We believe that relying on monetary authorities to pick up the considerable slack in growth by printing money by the boatload is completely wrongheaded. It distorts both the price of money and the risks of holding long-term claims denominated in paper money, builds a future risk of large inflation, supports economic activity only in an oblique and unfair way, and creates something that is going to be very hard to unwind.

On the consequences of the printing money “alchemy”:

  • Somehow many policymakers and citizens have come to believe that money printing is some kind of magical process, that good things can be produced literally out of thin air, and that if leaders don’t create growth from obviously-needed changes in wrongheaded policies, then poof!… printing more money will solve it. This is pathetic.
  • The range of inevitable costs to societies practicing such alchemy is somewhere between “a lot” and “utterly catastrophic.” The damage is already becoming evident, particularly in the distortion between the rise in financial asset prices and the sluggishness of the real economy. When consumer prices soar across the board or there are other painful consequences, we wonder what excuses the blameworthy policymakers will make to deny their responsibility.

Finally, on what nobody wants to discuss, but could very easily be the final outcome:

  • A loss of confidence in paper money could result in searing and startling inflation, evaporating life savings and turning every stolid worker into a frantic speculator.
  • If that were to occur, nobody could possibly say in hindsight that the conditions for such a sorry state of affairs were not in place.
  • The people who are telling us now that inflation is impossible because there is slack in the global economy, and that central banks can print trillions of dollars more without a significant risk of inflation, are the same folks who not only failed to predict the financial crisis, they did not even have a clue that a crisis of such kind was possible.

Indeed the “smartest money” is just that because it calls it how it is.

Jim Rogers, Scientists, Economists, and Geopolitical Analysts Issue Dramatic Warning


In a riveting interview on CNBC, legendary investor Jim Rogers warned Americans to prepare for “Financial Armageddon,” saying he fully expects the economy to implode after the U.S. election.

Rogers, who for years has been an outspoken critic of the Feds policies of “Quantitative Easing,” says the world is “drowning in too much debt.” He put the blame squarely on U.S. and European governments for abusing their “license to print money.” In the U.S. alone, the national debt has surged to nearly $16 trillion, that’s more than $50,000 for every American man, woman and child.

“[They] need to stop spending money they don’t have,” Rogers said. “The solution to too much debt is not more debt… What would make me very excited is if a few people [in the government] went bankrupt…” Rogers added.

Rogers also charged Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel with promoting dangerous policies that create the illusion the economy is stable… but are really only intended to buy time before their upcoming elections.

“Mrs. Merkle has an election next year,” Rogers said. “Mr. Obama has an election in November. The Americans and the Germans – they want to do everything they can to hold the world up until after the next election.”

In a newly released documentary that went viral last month, a team of influential economic experts say they have discovered a “frightening pattern” they believe points to a massive economic catastrophe unlike anything ever seen in the history of the world

The work of this team of scientists, economists, and geopolitical analysts has garnered so much attention, they were brought in front of the United Nations, UK Parliament, and numerous Fortune 500 companies to share much of their findings. Click on the short video above to see the eerie pattern.

And according to these experts – who have presented their findings to the United Nations, the UK Parliament and a long list of world governments – the catastrophe may happen well before Americans hit the polls in November.

“What this pattern represents is a dangerous countdown clock that’s quickly approaching zero,” said Keith Fitz-Gerald, the Chief Investment Strategist for the Money Map Press, who predicted the 2008 oil shock, the credit default swap crisis that helped bring about the recession, and the Greek and European fiscal catastrophe that is still wreaking havoc until this day.

“The resulting chaos is going to crush Americans.”

Another member of this team, Chris Martenson, a global economic trend forecaster, former VP of a Fortune 300, and an internationally recognized expert on the dangers of exponential growth in the economy, explained their findings further:

“We found an identical pattern in our debt, total credit market, and money supply that guarantees they’re going to fail,” Martenson said. “This pattern is nearly the same as in any pyramid scheme, one that escalates exponentially fast before it collapses. Governments around the globe are chiefly responsible.”

“And what’s really disturbing about these findings is that the pattern isn’t limited to our economy. We found the same catastrophic pattern in our energy, food, and water systems as well.”

According to Martenson, these systems could all implode at the same time.

Dr. Kent Moors, one of the world’s leading energy analysts, who advices 16 world governments on energy matters and who currently serves on two State Department task forces on energy, also voiced concerns over what he and his colleagues uncovered.

“Most frightening of all is how this exact same pattern keeps appearing in virtually every system critical to our society and way of life,” Dr. Moors stated.

“It’s a pattern that’s hard to see unless you understand the way a catastrophe like this gains traction,” Dr. Moors says. “At first, it’s almost impossible to perceive. Everything looks fine, just like in every pyramid scheme. Yet the insidious growth of the virus keeps doubling in size, over and over again – in shorter and shorter periods of time – until it hits unsustainable levels. And it collapses the system.”

Martenson points to the U.S. total credit market debt as an example of this unnerving pattern.

“For 30 years – from the 1940s through the 1970s – our total credit market debt was moderate and entirely reasonable,” he says. “But then in seven years, from 1970 to 1977, it quickly doubled. And then it doubled again in seven more years. Then five years to double a third time. And then it doubled two more times after that.

“Where we were sitting at a total credit market debt that was 158% larger than our GDP in the early 1940s… By 2011 that figure was 357%.”

Dr. Moors warns this type of unsustainable road to collapse can be seen today in our energy, food and water production. All are tightly connected and contributing to the economic disaster that lies directly ahead.

According to polls, the average American is sensing danger. A recent survey found that 61% of Americans believe a catastrophe is looming – yet only 15% feel prepared for such a deeply troubling event.

Fitz-Gerald says people should take immediate steps to protect themselves from what is happening.

“If our research is right,” says Fitz-Gerald, “Americans will have to make some tough choices on how they’ll go about surviving when basic necessities become nearly unaffordable and the economy becomes dangerously unstable.”

“People need to begin to make preparations with their investments, retirement savings, and personal finances before it’s too late,” says Fitz-Gerald.

Can even God stop America from implosion?


The launch of a new Joel Rosenberg book is a much-anticipated event, and with good reason.

Since landing on the bestseller lists in the past decade, Rosenberg has thrilled readers with his blending of geopolitics and biblical worldview. His area of expertise is the Middle East, but that doesn’t mean his discernment is confined to that epicenter (get it? As in, his previous book, “Epicenter”?).

In his new book, “Implosion: Can America Recover from Its Economic and Spiritual Challenges in Time?”, Rosenberg tackles the issue most self-absorbed Americans are interested in most: What is going to happen to the U.S. Specifically, of course, how does all this chaos in the world affect … me?

Happily, Rosenberg has proven himself to be, if not exactly a prognosticator, at least a man of discernment gained from studying the Bible and being involved in politics. Frankly, in “Implosion,” his study of the data is something you do not want to be without. The book is that gripping.

Right away, Rosenberg quotes former Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., who said two years ago that America would implode. Not hard to see why he’d say that: Exploding deficits, insane spending initiatives and weak leadership have created a storm of instability.

Interestingly, for Bible prophecy buffs, Rosenberg also quotes Sen. Kent Conrad of North Dakota, who claimed that unless the country gets a handle on economic difficulties, we will be relegated to “second-class” status as a nation. That one comment goes farther to answer the question, “Where is the U.S. in Bible prophecy?” than any other I’ve heard.

Rosenberg’s gift for understanding Bible prophecy enables him to “see” what’s coming, to a degree.

He even admits in “Implosion” that the data can be depressing: “Before we go any further, let me just say it has been difficult for me to write this book. To be perfectly honest, there were many times when I simply didn’t want to finish it. I didn’t want to study the data or examine the trends, much less draw any conclusions about the future of our country. The process was, at times, depressing, and if I’m not careful, I can still find myself becoming anxious or gloomy.”

He doesn’t say exactly what is going to happen, or paint himself into a corner by making specific predictions, but Rosenberg does do an incredible job of connecting the dots. He also causes the reader to consider his or her own place in this country, at this momentous hour. In this way, he allows the reader to participate in the story.

He also makes the interesting statement that when we look through the “third lens” – the Bible – “only then can we begin to see in three dimensions.” This is the key to understanding why many of our nation’s leaders are simply inadequate for the task.

In terms of whether the U.S. is specifically mentioned in Scripture, I won’t tell you even a tenth of what Rosenberg fascinatingly covers in “Implosion,” but he does, for example, surmise that the biblical references to future Babylon are not some symbolic revelation of America, but rather the actual location in Iraq.

Rosenberg’s conclusions about America in prophecy make “Implosion” one of the very best books on the subject I’ve ever read. Your eyes will be glued to every page, I promise you.

One of the most interesting things about Rosenberg’s work these days is the fact that while he has real credibility even among media and politicians, he emphatically teaches the Rapture: “While the Bible does not indicate precisely when the Rapture will happen, it does teach that all true followers of Jesus Christ will be removed from the earth prior to the beginning of the Tribulation.”

Frankly, it is gratifying that a writer and thinker like Joel Rosenberg is able to act as a counterweight to false teachers like Harold Camping. This is especially critical at a time when a growing number of evangelical leaders like Rick Warren are marginalizing the teaching of Bible prophecy.

Because Rosenberg is smart and astute, he recognizes that no human can say with certainty just how the future’s details will play out. In other words, he establishes a brilliant thesis in “Implosion” by noting that God alone acts in history, and that He can show mercy when it pleases Him.

To that end, Rosenberg writes an absolutely fascinating brief history of past revivals in America, and outlines the work of such Christian leaders as Jonathan Edwards: “The revival soon spread through 32 communities near Boston, then throughout New England and the rest of the colonies. Edwards’s tract was published in London and spread widely through Great Britain, Scotland and Wales, where pastors and laypeople were enthralled and began praying and preaching for revivals in their nations as well.”

“Implosion” wrestles with a whole host of important issues, among them the rebirth of Israel, terrorism, natural disasters and geopolitical convulsions. Yet none is as important as his appeal to the individual reader to meditate on these things and make the proper plans for a future that increasingly terrifies.

There is a lot to chew on in “Implosion.” It’s one meal you do not want to miss.