Friday, November 17, 2017

Musical Interlude: Moody Blues, “The Voice”

Moody Blues, “The Voice”

Greg Hunter, “Weekly News Wrap-Up 11/17/2017”

“Weekly News Wrap-Up 11/17/2017”
By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com

“The saga of Roy Moore continues with twists and turns and dirty tricks by the Deep State. It’s been revealed that a so-called robocall campaign to try and find dirt on Senate candidate Roy Moore happened after he won the GOP primary. Now, the only piece of evidence in multiple accusations that Roy Moore committed sexual misconduct has been called into question. Moore and his attorney are charging a yearbook inscription from the 1970’s, that proves contact with one of the alleged victims, is a forgery and a fraud. Moore denies any and all wrongdoing and is going to sue two women with the most damaging claims.

President Donald Trump is back from Asia and, by all accounts, it went very well. Trump got agreements of nearly $300 billion in new business for America, and Trump says, “The future has never been brighter.”

The recent purchase of a rare Da Vinci painting of Jesus Christ just went for $450 million at auction. Is this crazy, or is it a sign that the rich are trying to protect their money from inflation by compressing it into a rare work of art? Some say this is just a sign of the beginning of much higher inflation that is coming globally."
"Join Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog.com as he looks at
 these stories and more in the Weekly News Wrap-Up.”

Thursday, November 16, 2017

"'Welfare for the Wealthy': 227 House Republicans Pass $1.5 Trillion Tax Cut for Corporations and the Rich"

"'Welfare for the Wealthy': 227 House Republicans Pass 
$1.5 Trillion Tax Cut for Corporations and the Rich"
by Jake Johnson

"By a vote of 227-205, House Republicans on Thursday passed a tax bill that would permanently cut taxes for massive corporations, reward the extremely wealthy by eliminating the estate tax, trigger billions of dollars in automatic cuts to Medicare, and raise taxes on millions of middle- and working-class families. 

"With this bill, the House GOP is moving to rig the system further for the powerful and elite against everyday Americans," Frank Clemente, executive director of Americans for Tax Fairness, said in a statement following Thursday's vote. "It's immoral that many hardworking families will pay a higher tax bill or lose access to critical services like healthcare so that some CEO can get a bigger bonus and buy a bigger yacht. Millions of Americans in the middle and at the bottom will be the losers from this tax plan, while the wealthiest will benefit."

According to an analysis released by the Joint Committee on Taxation, everyone earning under $75,000 a year would on average see their taxes rise by 2027 under the House's plan. The wealthiest Americans and the largest corporations, by contrast, would see their taxes fall drastically.

As the Washington Post notes, the House bill - which calls for $1.5 trillion in tax cuts - "delivers more than 80 percent of its overall cuts to corporations, business owners, and wealthy families who are subject to the federal estate tax."
It is these facts that led Terrence Meehan of the Patriotic Millionaires to label the House GOP's plan "welfare for the wealthy" in a video published following Thursday's vote. The House's approval of the tax plan was a major step toward President Donald Trump's expressed goal of ramming through tax cuts by the end of the year.

The Senate Republicans are expected to vote on their own plan before Thanksgiving. In addition to providing similarly enormous tax cuts to the rich while hiking taxes on millions of middle class and poor families, the Senate bill also includes a provision that repeals the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate, which the Congressional Budget Office has estimated would strip healthcare from 13 million Americans."
Aren't you tired of this yet?

X22 Report, “Déjà Vu, We Are Seeing The Same Signs Now As We Saw Back In 2008”

X22 Report, “Déjà Vu, We Are Seeing The Same Signs Now As We Saw Back In 2008”
Related followup report:
X22 Report, “Are The Globalists Moving Forward With Their One Currency Agenda?”

Musical Interlude: Kevin Kern, “Another Realm”

Kevin Kern, “Another Realm” 

"A Look to the Heavens"

"Have you ever seen the Milky Way's glow create shadows? To do so, conditions need to be just right. First and foremost, the sky must be relatively clear of clouds so that the long band of the Milky Way's central disk can be seen. The surroundings must be very near to completely dark, with no bright artificial lights visible anywhere. Next, the Moon cannot be anywhere above the horizon, or its glow will dominate the landscape. Last, the shadows can best be caught on long camera exposures.
Click image for larger size.
In the above image taken in Port Campbell National Park, Victoria, Australia, seven 15-second images of the ground and de-rotated sky were digitally added to bring up the needed light and detail. In the foreground lies Loch Ard Gorge, named after a ship that tragically ran aground in 1878. The two rocks pictured are the remnants of a collapsed arch and are named Tom and Eva after the only two people who survived that Loch Ard ship wreck. A close inspection of the water just before the rocks will show reflections and shadows in light thrown by our Milky Way galaxy."

"I've Learned..."

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said,
people will forget what you did,
but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
- Maya Angelou

Black Elk, "Earth Prayer"

"Earth Prayer"

“Grandfather, Great Spirit, once more behold me on earth and lean to hear my feeble voice. You lived first, and you are older than all need, older than all prayer. All things belong to you - the two-legged, the four-legged, the wings of the air, and all green things that live. You have set the powers of the four quarters of the earth to cross each other. You have made me cross the good road and road of difficulties, and where they cross, the place is holy. Day in, day out, forevermore, you are the life of things.
    Hey! Lean to hear my feeble voice.
    At the center of the sacred hoop
    You have said that I should make the tree to bloom.
    With tears running, O Great Spirit, my Grandfather,
    With running eyes I must say
    The tree has never bloomed
    Here I stand, and the tree is withered.
    Again, I recall the great vision you gave me.
    It may be that some little root of the sacred tree still lives.
    Nourish it then
    That it may leaf
    And bloom
    And fill with singing birds!
    Hear me, that the people may once again
    Find the good road
    And the shielding tree.

I think I have told you, but if I have not, you must have understood, that a man who has a vision is not able to use the power of it until after he has performed the vision on earth for the people to see... It was even then only after the heyoka ceremony, in which I performed my dog vision, that I had the power to practice as a medicine man, curing sick people; and many I cured with the power that came through me. Of course it was not I who cured. It was the power from the outer world, and the visions and ceremonies had only made me like a hole through which the power could come to the two-leggeds. If I thought that I was doing it myself, the hole would close up and no power could come through. Then everything I could do would be foolish...

    Revealing this, they walk.
    A sacred herb - revealing it, they walk.
    Revealing this, they walk.
    The sacred life of bison - revealing it, they walk.
    Revealing this, they walk.
    A sacred eagle feather - revealing it, they walk.
    Revealing this, they walk.
    The eagle and the bison - like relatives they walk.

The Six Grandfathers have placed in this world many things, all of which should be happy. Every little thing is sent for something, and in that thing there should be happiness and the power to make happy. Like the grasses showing tender faces to each other, thus we should do, for this was the wish of the Grandfathers of the World."
- Black Elk, Oglala Sioux

The Universe

"A main "Criterion of Consciousness" for the human experience is never having all you want. For as one dream comes true, another swiftly takes its place. Not having all you want is one of life's constants. And learning to be happy while not yet having all you want is the first "Criterion of Joy." Nail it, and for the rest of your life people will be asking what it is about you. Yeah, as if they weren't already asking."
"Desire is a beautiful thing."

    The Universe

"Thoughts become things... choose the good ones!"
www.tut.com

Chet Raymo, “Strange”

 
“Strange”
by Chet Raymo

“In a review in the “New York Times” Book Review, Daniel Handler writes: “And strange? Well, let's get this straight: All great books are strange. Every lasting work of literature since the very weird "Beowulf" has been strange, not only because it grapples with the strangeness around us, but also because the effect of originality is startling, making even the oldest books feel like brand new stories.”

Strange: Out-of-the-ordinary, unusual, curious. "The strangeness around us," says Handler. There is a paradox here. What could be less strange than the world around us? It is the same world that was here yesterday, and the day before that. More to the point: It is a world ruled by law. Inviolable causal bonds. That's what makes science possible.

And yet, and yet. I walk wary. Strangeness lurks on ever side. Strangeness leaps out of every pebble in the path, every wildflower, every spider web flung between weedy stalks. In the midst of the utterly ordinary the extraordinary abounds. Nothing is so commonplace as to be common.

The strangeness of the world, as in literature, has its source in the head, in the convoluted interaction of mind with world. Strange, that we should be here, strangers in a strange land, pilgrims on our own yellow brick roads where nothing is ordinary because everything is perceived through the filter of a unique consciousness.

And strange? Well, let's get this straight. I hope never to loose the capacity to see the strangeness in the familiar, the curious in the everyday, the exception in the unexceptional. "I do not expect a miracle/ or an accident/ to set the sight on fire," wrote Silvia Plath. Just being here is enough. Just being here is surpassing strange."

The Daily "Near You?"

Brookings, Oregon, USA. Thanks for stopping by!

"A Meter Is Running..."

"The monstrous thing is not that men have created roses out of this dung heap, but that, for some reason or other, they should want roses. For some reason or other man looks for the miracle, and to accomplish it he will wade through blood. He will debauch himself with ideas, he will reduce himself to a shadow if for only one second of his life he can close his eyes to the hideousness of reality. Everything is endured- disgrace, humiliation, poverty, war, crime, ennui- in the belief that overnight something will occur, a miracle, which will render life tolerable. And all the while a meter is running inside and there is no hand that can reach in there and shut it off."
- Henry Miller, “Tropic of Cancer”

“Mexico, as It Is and Wasn’t: Some Stuff Worth Knowing”

“Mexico, as It Is and Wasn’t: Some Stuff Worth Knowing”
by Fred Reed

"For Americans concerned about  Mexico and Mexicans, and what sort of wights they be, a little history may help. We seem to know almost nothing  about a bordering nation of 130 million. It is not what most of us think it is. It is certainly not what the Loon Right would have us believe.

For many years, until 1910, Mexico was run by Europeans, lastly under Porfirio Diaz, for the benefit of Europeans. Literacy was extremely low with economic conditions to match. The country was indeed, to borrow a favorite phrase of those hostile to Latin Americans, a Third-World hellhole. Many nations then were, to include China.

In 1910 the Revolution broke out. It was godawful, as civil wars usually are. It ended in 1921, followed shortly by the Cristero religious war until 1929. This had the usual hideousness favored by religious wars. It left the country devastated. It hadn’t been much to start with, but now it was a wreck. Aldous Huxley, writing in 1934, saw no improvement. ("Beyond the Mexique Bay") At least until 1940 much of Mexico was barely civilized, unlettered, lawless, and poor. Things were not all that swell in 1970.

Today, seventy-six years later (says the CIA Factbook), literacy is at 95%; the economy at $2.2 trillion, 12th  in the world in PPP; median age, 28; population growth rate, 1.12%; mother’s mean age at first birth, 21.3; total fertility, 2.24 children per woman; life expectancy at birth, 76 years.

Mexico today has a large number of universities (the Technológico of Monterrey, a premier engineering school, has some thirty campuses in as many cities: Is that one university or thirty?) Mexico graduates well over 100,000 engineers a year, including 13,000 in software, and has a rapidly growing high-tech industry  with centers in Guadalajara and Mexico City. Major American firms, to include IBM, Oracle, and Intel, come here to hire them.

And of course internet, airlines, computerized everything, and teenagers pecking at smartphones. This is a lot of change in less than a man’s lifetime. Those hostile to Latin Americans do not want to know this, and usually manage not to.

In many ways Mexico remains a mess, mostly because of organized crime and corruption. Distribution of wealth is badly unequal, being now what the US is becoming. Books could be written about what is wrong with the country. Finland it isn’t. But neither is ti remotely a “Third-World hell hole” despite the squalling of such authorities as Ann Coulter, Manhattan’s premier she-ass.

It would be a good idea to retire the phrase, “Third World.”  Any designation that includes both Buenos Aires and Haiti (I have spent time in the slums of Cite Soleil with the US Army) is so broad as to be without meaning. In 1930, China, Mexico, Thailand and so on could reasonably have been called hellholes. None of these even comes close today. The slums of India do, as does much of Africa, yes.

To grasp the degree of educational advance between the Mexico as it was and as  of 1940 and today, look at what is visible on the ground:

Go into an ordinary bank, with which Mexico is littered. The clerks have to understand exchange rates, intermediate banks, SWIFT codes. They sit at computers, which are networked within the bank and with national headquarters, requiring network engineers and software weenies. Multitudinous ATMs require network people and maintainers. Telmex, the quite good telephone monopoly, needs people to program and maintain  switches and associated software. So do TelCel and ATT, cell-phone providers. Airlines need pilots and trainers of pilots, people to run and maintain high-bypass turbofans and avionics, the instrument-landing systems (ILS). The internet needs software people, router techs, help-line techs when someone’s modem fails (the techs are good). Also doctors and dentists, universities to train them, people who understand and maintain MRI gear, the usual elaborate diagnostic instrumentation, mechanics to run the diagnostic computers at car dealerships and understand what lurks under the hoods of today’s cars (which would baffle Stephen Hawking). And so on at great length. Similar observations could be made of many Latin American and Asian countries. Starting from roughly zero a few decades ago.

Anyone who actually lives here can see that the country continues to change at a high rate. The middle class grows. Internet speeds keep going up. Despite the ardent hopes of many web sites of the Loon Right, you do not come down with exotic diseases, or any diseases, by eating in restaurants. Schooling increases. Common is a mother, age forty with ten siblings, who has two children, both in university or tech schools. None of this is universal, but increasingly common. This in not up there with, say, a manned landing on Mars, but it is hardly consistent with stone-age hell-holedom.

What Mexican are not, yet anyway, is driven in the sense that Americans often are. Young Mexican engineers are more so more so, but not the general population. A Mexican girl – to use an example I know – will go to dental school and then stay in her home town, however small, marry, fix teeth, and raise children. Mexicans seem less entrepreneurial than Americans. They tend to regard a job as a way of supporting a family instead of the other way around.

There is considerable social mobility, at least around the cities. Women start businesses here, often restaurants , stores, bars, or maybe assisted-care homes in regions favored by retired Americans (e.g., Lakeside Care, down the street), but seem content with enough. “Enough” means something to them that it often does not to Americans. Whether this is good or bad can be debated, but it makes for contentedness but not commercial empires.

How will the new Mexican-American population adapt to the United States? I don’t know. Neither does anyone else, though many who know nothing about it have firm opinions. Will the government turn them into a sprawling class of welfare dependents? Doubtless if it can. Will furiously hostile anti-immigrant lobbies make them into internal enemies? They want to, and it would be the end of the US.

Or will they clamber, rapidly or otherwise, into the middle class and cease to be of much interest? The latter, I think. An intelligent policy would be to encourage them, but we can do it anyway. They are pretty good people, not given to terrorism or mutilating their daughters or the knockout game,  and they burn a minimum of cities. Everywhere I have been – LA, San Fran, DC, Houston, San Antonio, Pilsen and Berwyn in Chicago – they have seemed to be settling peacefully in. They have the potential to make it. We had better hope they get there.”

"Incidit In Scyllam Cupiens Vitare Charybdim"

"Incidit In Scyllam Cupiens Vitare Charybdim"
by Steve Candidus

"One of the great things about ancient Greek Mythology is that the stories all teach a lesson. They don’t end with – and the moral of the story is – though. They leave it to the reader to figure them out. So in addition to being just plain fun to read they are wonderful teachers about life. Perhaps the best thing about this one is that we still use the expression it contains exactly the same way that the ancient Greeks intended it almost 3,000 years ago. That almost never happens. Language is fluid and the meanings of words and expressions changes from one generation to another, but this one is an exception. The everyday expression it contains is one that we often refer to without really knowing where it came from.

This is one of the tales of Odysseus who was the heroic king of Ithaca and of whose ten-year journey back to Greece after the Trojan War was immortalized in Homer’s ‘Odyssey’. There was a point in his journey when his ship had to enter a narrow straight. It was a passage so narrow that it could only be made under special conditions. They had to have both the wind at their backs and the current in their direction. However, once committed it was impossible to turn back.

Unknown to the sailors the straight was guarded by two deadly perils. On the one side, it was guarded by Scylla. Scylla was a six-headed monster that disguised itself as a rock. On the other side, it was guarded by Charybdis, a terrible deadly whirlpool born of the sea god Poseidon.

In olden times, it was common to refer to any place that a ship came to rest on land as being in a hard place. It didn’t matter if it was blown on shore by a storm, grounded on a reef or brought up intentionally for repair. If it was on shore, it was on a hard place as opposed to the soft place – water.

It also applied to a ship that had foundered. A ship that sinks will eventually rest on the bottom. The land at the bottom of the ocean is therefore called a hard place. It used to be a common term, but it has since pretty much fallen out of practice in common language today. A deadly whirlpool such as Charybdis could take a ship and send it straight to the bottom – a hard place.

So, now as we return to the story of Odysseus we see that their ship had entered a narrow straight and that straight was guarded by two evil perils with hardly enough room for a ship to pass between them. They were forced to choose between the six headed monster ‘Scylla’ disguised as a rock or the dreaded whirlpool ‘Charybdis’ that would surely send them to a hard place and they could not turn back.

There is a Latin proverb from this story, “Incidit in Scyllam cupiens vitare Charybdim” which translates to, “He runs on Scylla, wishing to avoid Charybdis.” In modern day English, we simply say, “They were between a rock and a hard place”. And now you know…”

"How It Really Is"

"When you're born into this world you’re given get a ticket to the freak show.
 When you're born in America, you get a front row seat."
 - George Carlin 

"The Superhero Complex: Are We Incapable of Saving Ourselves?”

"The Superhero Complex: Are We Incapable of Saving Ourselves?”
by Charles Hugh Smith

"It’s been widely noted that the U.S. film industry ably functions as a pro-global hegemony propaganda machine: even when the plot features evil rogue elements at work in a global-hegemony agency (Pentagon, CIA, NSA, etc.), the competence of the agency is never in doubt, nor is the agency’s ability to rid itself of the evil rogue element. Evil conspiracies are revealed and the Good Guys/Gals win. This depiction of official competence and the moral righteousness of patriotic employees is not surprising; these agencies have long “cooperated” with Hollywood on many levels.

More troubling is the recent film-industry depiction of our dependence on superheroes and their superpowers to set things right. The benign view is that Hollywood is always seeking new billion-dollar source materials for multi-film franchises, and comic book heroes are tailor-made for franchises: not only can multiple films be made about individual superheroes, but the potential for mix-and-match combinations of superheroes is practically endless.

The less benign view is that the popularity of superhero movies reflects a deep insecurity and worrisome desire for fantasy saviors, as if mere mortals can no longer save themselves with their pitiful real-world powers.

Psychoanalyzing the zeitgeist of films has long been a popular parlor game: much has been written about the popularity of monster films (often featuring nuclear radiation as the trigger of the mayhem) in 1950s Japan, and the meaning of the American Noir films in the 1950s.

Correspondent C.D. recently submitted an interpretation of Hollywood’s superhero movies: is our collective fascination with superheroes reflecting a sense that we no longer have the power to save ourselves? “One of the things I’ve been thinking about lately is the idea of TPTB (the Powers That Be) using entertainment, specifically movies, to keep the masses from rising up. Have you noticed how many modern movies use the archetype of the hero, but place that hero in opposition to some type of system (e.g. the Empire in Star Wars), or we have superheros. In both instances, there is a type of cathartic release for the audience’s frustrations with the current system. When the evil empire is defeated in the movie, people get an emotional release and they feel less motivated to deal with the real world empire.

When a superhero takes care of the problem, the audience is lulled into the pattern of thinking that someone else will take care of things. Also, often these superhero movies present the average Joe/Jane and the authorities as incompetents who need saving, which reinforces a feeling of helplessness to take on big powers. I’m sure others have come up with this type of analysis and I may be repeating what they have said, but it’s worth further consideration.”

Thank you, C.D. I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to say that many people sense their power within the system is extremely limited, as is their power to radically transform their own situation.

As for cheering for the ragtag rebels resisting the Empire–how many people feel divested from America, that is, they sense their “ownership” in the Empire’s wealth and power is near-zero? How many feel disempowered and disenfranchised? It’s not much of a leap from social, political and financial divestiture to feeling that it takes superpowers to change one’s circumstances or save the system from disorder and destruction.

Are we incapable of saving ourselves from a self-destructive status quo owned and operated by the few at the expense of the many? If we felt empowered in daily life, would we be so enamored of superheroes constantly saving our world from destruction? If we felt the system still had the wherewithal to restore itself, would we need so many superheroes? Or maybe it’s all just good clean (highly profitable) fun, or a sci-fi/fantasy updating of Greek Mythology. Still, that practically every other movie is another installment of the superhero franchise seems to beg for a look beneath the surface appeal of these escapist extravaganzas.”
"Power to radically transform their own situation..." "Empowered..."
 I'd guess that would depend on what situation one is defending themselves from...

"The Last Time These 3 Ominous Signals Appeared Simultaneously Was Just Before The Last Financial Crisis"

"The Last Time These 3 Ominous Signals Appeared 
Simultaneously Was Just Before The Last Financial Crisis"
by Michael Snyder

"We have not seen a “leadership reversal”, a “Hindenburg Omen” and a “Titanic Syndrome signal” all appear simultaneously since just before the last financial crisis. Does this mean that a stock market crash is imminent? Not necessarily, but as I have been writing about quite a bit recently, the markets are certainly primed for one. On Wednesday, the Dow fell another 138 points, and that represented the largest single day decline that we have seen since September. Much more importantly, the downward trend that has been developing over the past week appears to be accelerating. Just take a look at this chart. Could we be right on the precipice of a major move to the downside?

John Hussman certainly seems to think so. He is the one that pointed out that we have not seen this sort of a threefold sell signal since just before the last financial crisis. The following comes from Business Insider: "On Tuesday, the number of New York Stock Exchange companies setting new 52-week lows climbed above the number hitting new highs, representing a “leadership reversal” that Hussman says highlights the deterioration of market internals. Stocks also received confirmation of two bearish market-breadth readings known as the Hindenburg Omen and the Titanic Syndrome."

Hussman says these three readings haven’t occurred simultaneously since 2007, when the financial crisis was getting underway. It happened before that in 1999, right before the dot-com crash. That’s not very welcome company. In fact, every time we have seen these three signals appear all at once there has been a market crash. Will things be different this time? We shall see.

If you are not familiar with a “Hindenburg Omen” or “the Titanic Syndrome”, here are a couple of pretty good concise definitions:

Hindenburg Omen: A sell signal that occurs when NYSE new highs and new lows each exceed 2.8% of advances plus declines on the same day. On Tuesday, they totaled more than 3%.
Titanic Syndrome: A sell signal triggered when NYSE 52-week lows outnumber 52-week highs within seven days of an all-time high in equities. Stocks most recently hit a record on November 8.

You can see the other times in recent decades when these three signals have appeared simultaneously on this chart right hereOnce again, past patterns do not guarantee that the same thing will happen in the future, but if the market does crash it should not surprise anyone.

10 days ago, I published an article entitled “The Federal Reserve Has Just Given Financial Markets The Greatest Sell Signal In Modern American History,” I pointed out that this stock market bubble was created by unprecedented central bank intervention, and now global central banks are reversing the process that created the bubble in unison. There is no possible way that stock prices can stay at these absolutely absurd levels without central bank help, and if global central banks stay on the sidelines a market decline would seem to be virtually inevitable.

Meanwhile, we are also witnessing a very alarming flattening of the yield curve: "Hogan said the market is nervous about the “flattening” difference between the 2-year yield and the 10-year Treasury yield, which have been moving closer together. The curve dipped to 68 basis points Tuesday, a 10-year low. Hogan said 70 has become a line in the sand, and when it falls below that traders get nervous."

A flattening curve can signal that the curve will invert, which historically means a recession is on the horizon. If the yield curve does end up inverting, that will be a major red flag. But the experts assure us that we have nothing to worry about.

For example, just check out what Karyn Cavanaugh of Voya Financial is saying“Now that the earnings season is wrapped up, markets are more beholden to macro data. Weakness in oil prices and skepticism about the passing of the tax bill are also weighing on sentiment,” said Karyn Cavanaugh, senior market strategist at Voya Financial. Despite the drop on the day, major indexes remain within 1.5 percentage points of record levels. “Any pullback at this stage should be viewed as an opportunity to buy, however. Earnings outlook for U.S. stocks, especially with the synchronized global growth environment is still good,” Cavanaugh said.

And U.S. consumers continue to pile on more debt as if there is no tomorrow.  This week we learned that U.S. household debt has almost reached the 13 trillion dollar threshold: "Americans’ debt level rose during the third quarter, driven by an increase in mortgage loans, according to a Federal Reserve Bank of New York report published on Tuesday. Total U.S. household debt was $12.96 trillion in the three months to September, up $116 billion from the prior three months. Debt levels were $605 billion higher than during the third quarter of 2016."

The fundamentals do not support this kind of irrational optimism. What the fundamentals have been telling us is that in the absence of central bank support we should see the markets start to decline, and that it is quite likely that a painful recession is on the horizon. As the next crisis erupts, the mainstream media is going to respond with shock and horror. But the only real surprise is that this ridiculous bubble lasted for as long as it did.

The truth is that a market decline is way overdue. If central banks had not pumped trillions upon trillions of dollars into the global financial system, there is no possible way that stock prices would have ever gotten so high, and now that the central banks are removing the artificial life support we shall see how the markets do on their own.”
http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/

Related:
"France Ran Out of Money Last Tuesday - 
And Within Days, So Will The Rest of Europe"
http://nationalpost.com/

"Deutsche: The Swings In The Market Are About To Get Bigger And Bigger”
Hmm, let's see... $2.5 QUADRILLION in derivatives... "margin calls"...
What could possibly go wrong?

“A Luddite’s Guide to the Future”

“A Luddite’s Guide to the Future”
by Bill Bonner

"We were disappointed to see the pedestal…naked…forlorn…its statue gone…its purpose defunct. For more than a century, the bronze statue of Supreme Court Justice Roger B Taney - gravely pondering the weighty issues of the mid-19th Century - graced the park. Now he is gone.
Justice Taney’s statue in Baltimore has been hauled off.

No decision necessary: Now we are much better people. Because now we have so many rules, regulations, and protocols, we have no choice in the matter. We no longer have to be wise, clever, or good. No pondering necessary. We just have to obey!

For example, you have thousands of choices about which drugs to take. Many of them will kill you, but you don’t want to go to the grave after taking an ‘illegal’ drug. Better to take a doctor’s prescription; then your grieving spouse can sue somebody. No fanny pinching without prior consent! If your wife tells you it’s OK, tell her to put it in writing. And consult a lawyer.

Unless, of course, you are famous or powerful; then, the President of the United States of America says you can do whatever you want. And no tax avoidance…unless it is specifically authorized in one of the 71,689 pages of the US tax code. Or perhaps in the 459-page Senate tax reform proposal.

That is progress! Everything is carefully laid out for us. ‘Take off your shoes…take out your laptops…’ The SEC gives us 80 years of rulings to guide our investment morality. And if the impulse to say something hateful to your neighbor comes over you, you’re saved: It’s against the law. Discrimination is unlawful, too. And according to a full-page warning in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, it is against the law even to ‘steer’ people to neighborhoods where you think they will be more at home (that is, where other people like them live).

And now, there is no longer any need to separate the deserving poor from the layabouts; the feds are in charge of charity. Old people? Cripples? Half-wits? The feds will take care of them, too. That’s the great advantage of living in a degenerate civilization; the authorities will make the decisions for you.

Robot butlers: If only Roger Taney had had access to the internet. Surely, he would have come down on the right side of that Dred Scott decision, and he’d still have his place in the park. And now that we have electronic brains in abundance, there will be no more errors. No more moral failures. No more accidents. And no more ‘Oh, I didn’t know that’ replies when you are caught breaking one of the 10,000 commandments that govern our lives. Our cars will be self-driving. And robot butlers will bring us our clothes in the morning. (No more mixing plaids…no more clashing colors.)

Yes, dear reader, here is where it starts to get interesting. Back in the summer, Morgan Stanley predicted that quantum computing would soon lead to ‘exponential acceleration’ in the ability of computers to think. Pretty soon, computers will be smarter than we are. They can decide what pants we wear. Speaking for ourselves, we are neither surprised nor impressed. Computers have been getting smarter all the time; humans, on the other hand, have been getting dumber. They were bound to meet somewhere. Now, according to the experts, these smarter computers will do all the work that used to be done by bipeds. This thought has delighted both central planners and cabbage people.

Zombie paradise: The former are busy figuring out how to keep control over the machines…and use them to create the perfect societies they’ve always wanted. The latter are planning full-time retirement. Where the two come together is in a Guaranteed Basic Income. From a post at Medium: ‘As long as we force each other to work for money in order to live, automation will work against us instead of for us. It is a civilizational imperative that we decouple income from work so as to create economic freedom for all. Without an unconditional basic income, the future is a very dark place. With unconditional basic income, especially one that rises as productivity rises as a rightful share of an increasingly automating economy, the future is finally a place for humanity.’

We don’t know where humanity has been all these years! But finally, the future we’ve all be waiting for. A zombie paradise. No work. No thinking. Which just illustrates why it will be so easy for machine intelligence to overtake the organic kind. More to come…”

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Musical Interlude: Deuter, "Marfa Lights 1"

Deuter, "Marfa Lights 1"

"A Look to the Heavens"

“Far beyond the local group of galaxies lies NGC 3621, some 22 million light-years away. Found in the multi-headed southern constellation Hydra, the winding spiral arms of this gorgeous island universe are loaded with luminous young star clusters and dark dust lanes. 
Click image for larger size.
Still, for earthbound astronomers NGC 3621 is not just another pretty face-on spiral galaxy. Some of its brighter stars have been used as standard candles to establish important estimates of extragalactic distances and the scale of the Universe. This beautiful image of NGC 3621 traces the loose spiral arms far from the galaxy's brighter central regions that span some 100,000 light-years. Spiky foreground stars in our own Milky Way Galaxy and even more distant background galaxies are scattered across the colorful skyscape.”

The Poet: John Keats, "The Human Seasons"

 "The Human Seasons"
 
"Four Seasons fill the measure of the year;
There are four seasons in the mind of man:
He has his lusty Spring, when fancy clear
Takes in all beauty with an easy span:
He has his Summer, when luxuriously
Spring's honied cud of youthful thought he loves
To ruminate, and by such dreaming high
Is nearest unto heaven: quiet coves
His soul has in its Autumn, when his wings
He furleth close; contented so to look
On mists in idleness - to let fair things
Pass by unheeded as a threshold brook.
He has his Winter too of pale misfeature,
Or else he would forego his mortal nature."

~ John Keats (1795–1821)

"Just Look At Us..."

X22 Report, "The Global Economic System Is On Verge Of Imploding On Itself"


X22 Report, "The Global Economic System Is On Verge Of Imploding On Itself"

“At the Core”

“At the Core”
By Francis Marion

"Last week I got a call from one of the few close, personal friends I have. He tells me he has kidney cancer. It’s a tumor the size of a baseball he says and they are slotting him in for surgery this week. They are removing his kidney; right lickety split now.

I sat with him the day before last and talked about the ordeal. Intellectually he knows he can live just fine with one kidney and it doesn’t appear the cancer has spread beyond the single tumour that has been found so he expresses confidence. But under the veneer of stalwart acceptance lingers a fear of death or worse, the possibility of a productive life whose capacity to function will be greatly curtailed.

My friend is a good man who cares about his family, community, and his country. He feels he still has a lot of work to do in this world and is not ready to step down because of cancer. I can tell that being out of the game is more frightening to him than the prospect of dying.

He makes me think.

As I get older I begin to see that human beings can be separated fairly neatly into several different intellectual categories. There are essentially three different types: Those whose minds are inquisitive and that long to be free, those whose minds are closed and long to be free from discomfort and those whose minds are made up and are happy to cause discomfort in others so that they may avoid internal or external reassessment of any kind.

The interesting part is that these mind sets are not divided by any particular physical or chronological feature. I’ve met a lot of older people who have never grown, who rarely if ever self assess or question anything about their environment and I’ve met some younger people who, in terms of their outlook on existence, are decades ahead of their age.

IQ is not a determining factor in perspective either. I have met Bantu hunters with low IQ’s whose outlook on human life is more holistic than most people I know, and whose hospitality and manners exceed those with IQ’s twice their own. I’ve also met people with IQ’s considerably higher than mine who lack any sense of perspective, decency or ability to empathize with others.

Life and people it seems, are not always as simple as we would like them to be.

On pondering this quasi paradox and wondering how we have arrived in a place and time where we are as divided as we are now I ended up speaking with an older gentlemen who works for me about my observations and the why of it all. He is probably one of the deeper thinkers I know and he sums it up thusly: There is no longer a core.

There is nothing left at the centre, marxism having done its job well, for the populations of the West to rally around as a whole. So we find ourselves either with blinders fully raised in an attempt to avoid the problem or at odds with one another locally because we have little in common.

For a while after returning from Africa I wondered: how can it be that I have more in common morally with the Bantu I hunted with in August than I do with the school teacher living across the street from me? I suppose it is what is at the core. Simple values, like respect for one another’s property, acknowledgement of simple elemental truths and humility and wonder in the face of the unknown.

At any rate I hope my friend pulls through his surgery this week, good friends being rare as they are, and the nucleus of what will be required to rebuild once this turning gets into full swing. Because it’s what’s at the core that counts the most. Everything else is just window dressing.”

Gregory Mannarino, “SITUATION CRITICAL: Bond Market Is Now Flashing RED”

Gregory Mannarino, “SITUATION CRITICAL: Bond Market Is Now Flashing RED”