Friday, December 11, 2009

Real cost for clunkers

THE REAL COST OF THE CASH-FOR-CLUNKERS SCAM
2009 Dec 7 from magistra.robinson@gmail.com
If you traded in a clunker worth $3500, you got $4500 off for an apparent "savings" of $1000. However, you have to pay taxes on the $4500 come April 15th (something that no auto dealer will tell you). If you are in the 30% tax bracket, you will pay $1350 on that $4500. So, rather than save $1000, you actually pay an extra $350 to the feds. In addition, you traded in a car that was most likely paid for. Now you have 4 or 5 years of payments on a car that you did not need, that was costing you less to run than the payments that you will now be making.

But wait; it gets even better: you also got ripped off by the dealer..
For example, every dealer here in LA was selling the Ford Focus with all the goodies, including A/C, auto transmission, power windows, etc for $12,500 the month before the "cash for clunkers" program started. When "cash for clunkers" came along, they stopped discounting them and instead sold them at the list price of $15,500. So, you paid $3000 more than you would have the month before.... (Honda, Toyota , and Kia played the same list price game that Ford and Chevy did).

So let's do the final tally here:
You traded in a car worth: $3500 
You got a discount of: $4500
---------
Net so far +$1000
But you have to pay $1350 in taxes on the $4500 
---------
Net so far: -$350
And you paid $3000 more than the car was selling for the month before
--------- 
Net -$3350 

We could also add in the additional taxes (sales tax, state tax, etc.) on the extra $3000 that you paid for the car, along with the 5 years of interest on the car loan, but let's just stop here.

So who actually made out on the deal? The feds collected taxes on the car along with taxes on the $4500 they "gave" you. The car dealers made an extra $3000 or more on every car they sold along with the kickbacks from the manufacturers and the loan companies. The manufacturers got to dump lots of cars they could not give away the month before. And the poor, stupid consumer got saddled with even more debt that they cannot afford. Obama and his band of merry men convinced Joe consumer that he was getting $4500 in "free" money from the "government" when in fact, Joe was giving away his $3500 car and paying an additional $3350 for the privilege.

Think this was stupid for those who were crazy enough to swallow this wonderful scheme? Just wait until we get health care with "no additional costs" over what most of us now pay for health insurance and the best medical care in the world. Think that scheme might be designed by the same people who came up with Cash for Clunkers?


John

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

ANNNND another notable suicide/death....hmm, real weird

This one coming at ya by way of the Chicago Tribune.

I just felt the need to put all of these apparent "suicides" up here. You be the judge.

September 12, 2009

Christopher Kelly, key figure in Blagojevich corruption probe, is dead

Posted by Jeff Coen, Jeremy Gorner, Kim Janssen at 3:10 p.m.; last updated at 7:49 p.m.

Christopher Kelly, a key figure in the federal corruption probe into former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, is dead.

The Cook County medical examiner’s office today confirmed that Christopher Kelly of Burr Ridge was pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital at 10:46 a.m. The office said hospital officials told them Kelly appeared to have died of salicylate intoxication. According to medical reference guides, salicylates are used in anti-inflammatory and pain relief medications.

Kelly was found in a lumber yard near 173rd Street and Cicero Avenue in Country Club Hills late Friday, said the town's mayor, Dwight Welch. Kelly arrived at Oak Forest Hospital at 11:15 p.m. Friday, said Marcel Bright, a Stroger Hospital spokesman.

At Oak Forest, he was treated and stabilized and doctors determined he needed additional treatment at Stroger, so he was transferred there by private ambulance, Bright said. Kelly arrived at Stroger at 5:15 a.m.

Kely was treated by doctors and pronounced dead at 10:46 a.m., said hospital spokesman Marcel Bright.

Chicago Police are conducting a death investigation along with Country Club Hills police.

Oak Forest Hospital officials alerted authorities of Kelly's whereabouts about 3 a.m., Welch said. Police found vomit in the lumber yard parking lot, Welch said.

"We are treating this as a death investigation--it's a possible homicide or suicide, but it's a high-profile case so we have a homicide level investigation," Welch said.

Illinois State Police crime scene investigators called in by Country Club Hills continued to look for evidence in the empty lumber yard parking lot tonight. The remote spot, opposite insect-filled corn fields near Interstates 57 and 80, was taped off as officers used flashlights to search on hands and knees.

Mayor Welch, who visited the lumber yard today, said detectives were looking for cigarette butts or anything else that might be traced back to potential witnesses or suspects.

An autopsy is scheduled for Sunday, according to the Cook County medical examiner's office.

Earlier today, two sources with knowledge of the situation told the Tribune they have been notified that Kelly died. Kelly is a former confidant and top fundraiser for Blagojevich, who was accused of using his office to leverage campaign donations and benefits for himself and his family.

Blagojevich, who is out of state on his book tour, released a statement through his publicist offering condolences.

“I am deeply saddened to hear that Chris has died. My heart goes out to his wife, Carmen, his three daughters, Grace, Jacqueline, and Claire and his entire family. They are in our prayers,” the statement read.

Kelly’s attorney, Michael Monico, declined to comment today when reached by a Tribune reporter.

Kelly, who was indicted alongside Blagojevich in April, pleaded guilty this week in a separate federal case.

On Tuesday, in a surprise move just a day before his scheduled trial, Kelly, owner of a roofing business, pleaded guilty to two counts of mail fraud as part of a kickback scheme to illegally obtain $8.5 million in work at O'Hare International Airport.

At the time, Kelly, 51, said he was under pressure from federal prosecutors to cooperate in their investigation of Blagojevich, but he refused.

Kelly faced a sentence of almost 5 years in prison on top of the roughly 3 years in prison he got in June for his guilty plea to tax offenses. Kelly was ordered to report to federal authorities for incarceration by Sept. 18.

The Tribune published a profile of Kelly in December 2007 after his first indictment. You can read it by clicking here.

Another notable suicide mention

Source: Bloomberg.com

By Edvard Pettersson and Joe Sabo

Sept. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Danny Pang, the founder of Private Equity Management Group Inc., who U.S. regulators claim bilked Taiwanese investors, died yesterday, a spokesman for the Pang family said. He was 42.

Pang was taken from his Newport Beach, California, home to Hoag Hospital the afternoon of Sept. 11 by paramedics who had responded to a call from the house, said Sergeant Doug Jones of the Newport Beach Police Department.

Charles Sipkins, a Pang family spokesman, confirmed the death and declined to comment further. Pang’s lawyer, James Riddet, wasn’t available.

Pang, who was free on $1 million bail, pleaded not guilty on July 27 to charges in a separate criminal case that he structured cash withdrawals to avoid having to report them. He was charged in an indictment with two counts of making a total of about 50 withdrawals in amounts of as high as $9,900 to evade a U.S. law that requires reporting cash withdrawals of $10,000 or more.

A trial date was set for Sept. 15, though it was postponed last month to August 2010.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission accused Pang of lying to Taiwanese investors about his credentials, forging insurance documents and paying existing investors with funds raised from new ones, while claiming the returns came from investments in life insurance policies.

$823 Million Invested

The financier was arrested in the criminal case in April, shortly after the SEC obtained an emergency order freezing the assets of Irvine, California-based PEMGroup.

PEMGroup’s investors, including eight financial institutions and about 35 wealthy individuals, have $823 million invested with PEMGroup, according to a May 6 report by the receiver. The underlying assets would be worth $193 million to $360 million, the receiver said in an August status report.

Thomas Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles, said in an e-mail that his office didn’t have confirmation of Pang’s death. In past cases, U.S. prosecutors have dismissed the case against a defendant upon the receipt of a death certificate, Mrozek said.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Newport Beach police got a report that there was a dead body on Pang’s block yesterday. A spokesman for the department told the newspaper he couldn’t explain that report, though he told the Journal that Pang was alive when he was taken to the hospital.

The case is U.S. v. Pang, 09-00161, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Santa Ana.)

Notable Suicide Mentions (HT cryptogon.com)

Via: Reuters:

James McDonald, a prominent adviser to wealthy families as chief executive of investment management group Rockefeller & Co, died in an apparent suicide,

on Sunday, local authorities said on Tuesday.

McDonald, 56, was found with a single gunshot wound in his car near a strip mall in Dartmouth, Massachusetts on Sunday afternoon. Police are still investigating.

“The preliminary investigation concludes that this was an apparent suicide,” said Gregg Miliote, a spokesman for Bristol County District Attorney Sam Sutter.

McDonald was credited with growing Rockefeller & Co, the New York-based family office established by oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller in 1882 to manage the dynasty’s assets, into a broader investment management company with roughly $28 billion in assets.

Known as a perfectionist who drove himself and his employees hard, McDonald lived in New York City where people who worked with him said he was equally at home in corporate boardrooms and the city’s most exclusive social circles.

Friends described McDonald, who earned degrees from Harvard and the University of Virginia, as a brilliant thinker who grasped difficult concepts quickly and had a vision to expand the company.

Several people who knew him professionally said on Tuesday that they were shocked by the news, noting they had no knowledge about any specific problems at Rockefeller & Co that might have prompted the death.

A spokesman at the Securities and Exchange Commission declined to comment on whether McDonald or the firm was facing any inquiries. In Massachusetts, where the state securities regulator has waged an aggressive campaign against investment advisers who were cheating clients, there is no investigation into McDonald or the company, a spokesman for Secretary of State William Galvin said.

The people, however, spoke of the mounting pressures McDonald faced while running an investment management business during exceedingly difficult financial market conditions.

Earlier this year, McDonald was one of the directors who left the board of lender CIT Group.

The directors cited the increased demands related to CIT becoming a bank holding company in December 2008 and time constraints related to each of their other professional commitments and responsibilities as their reasons for leaving, according to a CIT proxy.

McDonald was married with a son and daughter and had homes on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan and in Boston.

Rockefeller & Co confirmed the death in a short statement but declined to give further details. It said Austin Shapard, the company’s chief operating officer and chief financial officer, was now running the company.

Research Credit: Lagavulin

And then there's this one:

Former Beneficial CEO Finn Caspersen Dies in “Apparent Suicide”

September 16th, 2009

Update: New York Times: Suicide Victim May Have Hidden Millions Abroad:

He seemed, in many ways, like a man from another time, a Gatsbyesque figure who glided through a world of old money, private clubs and pedigree horses, his family name emblazoned on Ivy League halls.

Then, in an instant, he was gone — his privileged life ended, by his own hand, with a single gunshot to the head.

No one can know exactly what Finn M. W. Caspersen, a prominent philanthropist and the heir to the Beneficial Corporation fortune, was thinking when he decided to take his life on Labor Day. Although Mr. Caspersen, 67, was battling kidney cancer, his suicide shocked his family and friends.

But Mr. Caspersen, a patron of Harvard and Princeton who gave away tens of millions of dollars to charity, apparently harbored a secret: He was suspected of dodging many millions in federal taxes. The authorities, it seemed, were closing in.

At the time of his death, investigators were building a case against Mr. Caspersen on suspicion of using secret offshore bank accounts to evade taxes.

The authorities had asserted he might have owed as much as $100 million in back taxes and fines or, possibly, even have faced prison, according to a person briefed on the investigation, who was granted anonymity because of the delicacy of the case and the events surrounding Mr. Caspersen’s death.

Whispers of some sort of tax trouble went through the crowd at Mr. Caspersen’s funeral on Tuesday. About 800 people attended the service in Morristown, N.J.

“He made everything right for so many people, and that is why this is such a tragedy,” Susan Wachter, a friend and former Beneficial board member, said of Mr. Caspersen’s death.

Mr. Caspersen’s widow, Barbara, declined to comment as did other family members. But friends and business associates struggled to come to terms with the suicide of a man many characterized as larger than life.

“I’m shocked by his death,” said Philip Richter, a former managing director at Knickerbocker, Mr. Caspersen’s private investment firm.

The precise nature of the tax investigation was unclear. What is known is that Mr. Caspersen, a longtime fixture in New Jersey political circles, had been swept up in a broad, federal crackdown on the use of offshore bank accounts by wealthy Americans. UBS, the big Swiss bank, divulged the names of nearly 300 of its American clients in February and agreed to hand over several thousand more last month.

One wealthy UBS client, Igor Olenicoff, hid an estimated $200 million in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. In 2008, he pleaded guilty to a single federal tax felony and paid $52 million in back taxes and penalties. More recently, several other UBS clients, among them a Florida yacht broker, admitted to tax evasion.

As the inquiries continue, the names of more well-to-do people are likely to come to light. Those who have hidden money offshore face a difficult choice: They have a week to turn themselves over to the Internal Revenue Service or gamble that they will not be caught. The I.R.S. is offering amnesty to those who disclose their offshore holdings by Sept. 23. After that, offenders could face criminal prosecution.

The Caspersen case centers on bank accounts in Liechtenstein, which, like Switzerland, is a leading offshore haven. The I.R.S. learned that Mr. Caspersen held an account at LGT, the private bank controlled with Liechtenstein’s royal family, according to the person close to the investigation. Liechtenstein pledged last December to disclose the names of some wealthy Americans with bank accounts there, but it was unclear if Mr. Caspersen’s name was among them or how the I.R.S. learned of any account in his name.

The questions are unlikely to end with Mr. Caspersen’s death. His family was associated with Beneficial, the consumer lending giant, for most of the 20th century. Mr. Caspersen ran the company for 20 years before selling it to Household International in 1998 for $8.6 billion.

That year Mr. Caspersen established Knickerbocker, which he named after the men-only Knickerbocker Club, on the Upper East Side, to which he belonged. At that time, Knickerbocker oversaw about $1 billion, most of which represented the Caspersen fortune.

According to the person familiar with the investigation, federal authorities recently placed liens on the personal trusts of Mr. Caspersen’s four sons, Finn M. W. Caspersen Jr., Erik M. W. Caspersen; Samuel M. W. Caspersen; and Andrew W. W. Caspersen.

Like Mr. Caspersen, his sons are graduates of Harvard Law School, where the Caspersen Room houses rare books, documents and artwork. Last year, Mr. Caspersen pledged $30 million to Harvard Law, the largest single donation in the school’s history.

Henry Christensen III, a lawyer for Mr. Caspersen’s sons, declined to comment.

People who knew Mr. Caspersen characterized him as larger than life. Lawrence E. Bathgate II, a New Jersey lawyer who is a former national Republican Party finance chairman, came to know Mr. Caspersen when Thomas H. Kean first ran for governor in 1981. He said the governor’s backers wanted to make a splash when he won but were hampered by restrictions on how much they could raise for inaugural events.

Nonetheless, Mr. Caspersen made one black-tie party memorable by arranging for an antique wooden carriage, led by four matched horses, to bring the departing governor and the incoming governor to the party at the governor’s mansion on a cold winter night in 1982. The footman was in period costume, as was the man who held four reins by the hand.

Mr. Caspersen, an accomplished equestrian, was the driver, Mr. Bathgate said.

“I was talking to Governor Kean about it a couple of days ago, and we both agreed he was a throwback to a gentlemen of a prior time,” Mr. Bathgate said.

Mr. Caspersen’s health and financial situation apparently weighed on him in recent months.

Gerald L. Holm, a longtime friend and business associate, said Mr. Caspersen had mentioned that he was being audited by the I.R.S. but that he had not gone into details.

Mr. Holm said that Mr. Caspersen was “like a second father to me.”

He said, “Finn was never the type who was going to give his innermost secrets to anybody.”

Others said Mr. Caspersen’s health had worsened in recent months. On Labor Day afternoon, Mr. Caspersen’s despair apparently overtook him, and he shot himself to death on the grounds of the Shelter Harbor Golf Club in Westerly, R.I., the seaside community where he had a summer home, according to the local police. Mr. Caspersen was a founder of the club.

Shortly before his death, Mr. Caspersen placed his estate and nearby land in Westerly on the market for $10.9 million and began to step back from various philanthropic efforts.

He unexpectedly resigned from the Dean’s Advisory Council at Harvard Law School — he was in the class of 1966 — and quit as chairman of the board of the Peddie School, the prep school in Hightstown, N.J., from which he graduated in 1959.

He also resigned from the town commission in Jupiter Island, Fla., where he lived, and quietly stepped down as the chairman of the Hodson Trust, a foundation that has awarded $210 million in scholarships and was established by his ancestor Clarence Hodson, the founder of Beneficial Loan Society, later the Beneficial Corporation. But friends said Mr. Caspersen never spoke of his troubles. His friend William B. Warren was a guest in Mr. Caspersen’s Rhode Island house only days before he took his life. “He was cheerful,” Mr. Warren said.

—End Update—

Another one.

Via: Bloomberg:

Finn M.W. Caspersen, the former chairman and chief executive officer of Beneficial Corp., was found dead from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, authorities said. He was 67.

Police, responding to a call to check on him, found Caspersen on Sept. 7 behind an office building in the Shelter Harbor community of Westerly, Rhode Island, where he owned a home, said spokesman Edward St. Clair. He died from a single gunshot wound, the medical examiner said.

“Finn was always a gentleman and always made his resources available,” said Rhode Island state Senator Dennis Algiere, who represents the seaside region, just across the state line from Connecticut. “He was a very charitable individual. He donated a lot of time and money to various organizations in our community over the years.”

Caspersen sold consumer-finance company Beneficial to Household International Inc. in 1998 for more than $8 billion, His father, Olaus W. Caspersen, had joined Beneficial in 1920 and ran the company for 18 years. Finn Caspersen was paid almost $24 million in severance and other payments from the sale to Household, which became HSBC Finance Corp.

A graduate of Harvard Law School, Caspersen donated $30 million to the school in 2003 to help jump-start a capital campaign. He was also a graduate of Brown University.

An equestrian who specialized in carriage driving, Caspersen won three national championships and represented the U.S. in three world championships. He had been a board member of the U.S. Equestrian Team since 1982, was named president in 1990 and chairman in 1992.

No One ‘More Caring’

“I don’t think you could find someone more philanthropic or caring,” said Tucker Johnson, an equestrian and a friend of Caspersen’s, according to a statement on an equestrian Web site.

Former New Jersey Governor Thomas H. Kean said Caspersen gave away tens of millions of dollars to charity, according to the Newark Star-Ledger. While running Beneficial, Caspersen built a corporate headquarters in Peapack-Gladstone, New Jersey, the newspaper said.

Caspersen gave about $590,000 to the Republican Party between 1998 and 2001, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

He was chairman of Knickerbocker Management, a private firm overseeing the accounting and investments of various trusts, foundations and individuals, according to a 1999 press release from the Hodson Trust, a philanthropic organization.

Caspersen was chairman of the board of trustees of the Peddie School, his high school alma mater in Hightstown, New Jersey. The school has 530 students and an endowment of $218 million, according to its Web site.

Caspersen is survived by his wife, Barbara, and four children, according to the equestrian Web site.




Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The New Crusades

Did we really go into Iraq for WMD??? Perhaps, just perhaps, we have embarked on the next crusade against muslims?

Here are just a few, extremely interesting facts about what's being revealed around America and it's war on Terrorism:

From Alternet.org: Bush's Shocking Biblical Prophecy Emerges: God Wants to "Erase" Mid-East Enemies "Before a New Age Begins"

In GQ Magazine (GQ for crying out loud!): And he shall be judged. This one is classic: as it turns out, Rummy was sending, each day, top secret briefings to the president and select officials with pictures of the previous days war efforts. Not only did they have pictures of US military on the cover, but would also contain biblical quotes such as: Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. Or how about this doozy: Open the gates that the right nation may enter, the nation that keeps the faith. Want more: 1, 2, 3.

Those are just a few key points. But how about Blackwater? Know them? They were the mercenaries hired by rummy. They have a serious bone to pick against Muslims: the owner was raised in an extremely religious household, and has connections to every layer of politics you can imagine! And now they are, more and more, becoming enmeshed in serious allegations surrounding several "un-christian" charactheristics.

So, sorry if this was posted before i finished, but I don't know how to fix this problem we call religion. Because, ultimately, if we don't learn how to fix it, it will be our undoing!

Friday, August 7, 2009

CDC SWOT analysis & Vaccine Safety media strategy

So the CDC decided to do a "strenghts, weakness, opportunities, threats" analysis on vaccinations.

Here's just one sentence: "Hostile parents and non-professionals who envision vaccines as more harmful to individual children than good or believe in conspiracy theories related to vaccination programs."

Hostile parents? Of course we're hostile!! You inject our children with things that we have no knowledge of except for what you tell us, which we are now finding out, have been written by "ghostwriters" WHO WORKED FOR THE PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES PUSHING THE DRUGS THEY WANT!!

Then, when our children get autism, or ADD, ADHD, or ADDBYCDC, or DIE, LITERALLY DEAD, DEATH, NO PASSING GO, from a vaccine, which really, isn't a vaccine against a pandemic which is spreading rampantly across the country in such a fashion that every girl under 18 needs to get it, you say that it's not the vaccines fault.

AARGH, I just don't understand how we're able to sit back and allow all of this ridiculousness to go on. I'm just as bad, I haven't done much, but I'm trying to raise awareness, and my due diligence. I only hope that there are others doing theirs.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Gardasil for boys now?! Really??

I don't know if any of you are paying attention to this, but I had to just put this up.

Give Gardasil to Boys too, Experts Say
Published on 07-30-2009 Email To Friend Print Version

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Source: ABC News

Audio: Calls for boys and men to receive Gardasil vaccine (AM)

Recent evidence shows the human papilloma virus (HPV), which causes cervical cancer in women, is poised to become one of the leading causes of oral cancer in men because of changing sexual behaviours.

The findings have reignited the debate over whether boys should be given the cervical cancer vaccine, Gardasil.

A visiting British virologist, Professor Margaret Stanley, says governments around the world need to examine the long-term economic and health benefits of immunising boys and young men.

The head of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases at Melbourne’s Royal Women’s Hospital, Professor Suzanne Garland, says Australia is leading the way in the rollout of the cervical cancer vaccine Gardasil, which immunises against HPV.

“We are in our third year of rolling out the vaccine and we are in the order in the school-based group, in the high 70s, whereas in many other countries, they have only got 30 per cent who have been vaccinated,” she said.

But now the vaccination debate has switched genders.

There are growing calls from the medical community for boys and young men to also be vaccinated against HPV.

Advocates include one of Britain’s top cervical cancer specialists, Professor Margaret Stanley from Cambridge University, who says a cervical cancer jab in the arms of boys would not just be for the sake of girls.

“These HPVs don’t just cause cancer in women. They cause it in men as well. Cancer in the mouth, cancer in the anus and those cancers are very hard to treat,” she said.

“As an anti-cancer prevention strategy, I would have thought immunising boys was a sensible way to go.”

Professor Stanley is visiting Melbourne as the guest speaker at a cervical cancer conference at the Royal Women’s Hospital.

Increase

She says the rate of oral cancers linked to HPV is rising, and it is strongly associated with an increase in the practice of oral sex.

“There are some caused by alcohol and tobacco use and they are declining, but there is no doubt that the cancer caused by HPV are on an upward trajectory,” she said.

Professor Suzanne Garland says there would be other benefits to vaccinating men against HPV.

“I think it would also help destigmatise this just being a female disease,” she said.

The benefits exist, but critics say they do not outweigh the cost of a government-funded vaccination program for boys and young men.

However Professor Stanley rejects that categorically.

“The cost-effective modelling that is being done at the minute has actually not taken into account these other cancers,” she said.

“It has really only looked at ‘if we immunise boys, what effect will we have on cervix cancer’ and I think they need to go back to their models and say ‘if we immunise boys, what effect will have on these other cancers and what value for money will that be’."

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Mass vaccinations in Norway?

Here's something on mass vaccinations becoming mandatory in Norway! Line up, and roll up your sleeves america!!

Mass vaccination against flu


Image The Norwegian health authorities will this fall begin a program of mass vaccination against the A H1N1 flu, also called the swine flu. A total of 9.4 million doses have been ordered from the suppliers.

All will be given two innoculations, two weeks apart, Bergens Tidende reports. The total cost will be NOK 650 million.

So far, only 23 cases of the flu has been diagnosed in Norway, but the authorities expect that the number will increase.

(NRK)

Rolleiv Solholm

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I thought this was brilliant and had to share with you. it's a post on Market Ticker about how we, the people, the ones who do the spending in order to prop up this country, can "starve the beast".

It's a great piece, and this is the type of stuff that I love, and can only hope to eventually write. For now, I'll let others speak the thoughts that I have but have yet figured out how to formulate into substance.

Enjoy....

Posted by Karl Denninger in Editorial at 10:13

"Starve The Beast" - July 4th, 2009

Perhaps its time.

There have been a number of people on the forum talking about this, with one of the most recent converts being "iflyjetzzz".

Look, we can rant and rave about market manipulation and government-sponsored games. We can petition the SEC, the FBI and Congress. We can demand that they stop it all we want.

But they haven't and likely won't until and unless America gets pissed off enough to force them to act.

So how do we make that happen, yet remain within the law?

Its not that hard, and in the intermediate and longer-term it would be incredibly positive for our economy and nation.

We go on a consumption strike until and unless our demands are met.

What are our demands? Here's the list:

  • All the financial fraudsters are investigated, indicted, and prosecuted. This includes the con artists in CONgress who got "special deals" from Mozilo and his "Friends of Angelo" program (and who are blocking a subpoena to BofA as it would implicate them), it includes those past and current members of Government Sachs, and it includes all those other financial "professionals" who deceived Americans and others with their sale of toxic exploding mortgage products along with the securities supposedly backed by them.
  • Glass-Steagall is restored, in full, and all the firms that can't exist under it are broken up. Period.
  • The insider-trading that has become blatant and outrageous is prosecuted where illegal and where not, is made illegal and then prosecuted, with the focus being on the size of the scam. This includes obvious circumstances such as August 2007 (Bernanke's phone logs were FOIA'd) where trading patterns made clear that "certain someones" had foreknowledge of the discount rate cut along with Congresspeople who were briefed on the TARP and within hours or days made significant stock trades. Today if you're Martha Stewart you're prosecuted where if you make millions in an hour by exploiting government information "leaks" the SEC and FBI look the other way.
  • The Government withdraws all of its backstopping of financial firms who created this mess. All of it. If you're a bank or other firm and did something imprudent, you fail. Period. This is true whether you're a small regional bank (as is happening now; 5 in the last week) or a big behemoth like Citibank or Bank Of America. No "special deals", no "special guarantees", nothing of the kind. If the government wishes to avoid "systemic risk" then the government regulators can do their damn job.
  • The Fed disgorges all of its improperly-acquired MBS and other related securities. If it doesn't have a full-faith-and-credit guarantee and was bought, it is disgorged - period.
  • The Fed agrees to full annual audits without exception.
  • Those people inside government who conspired with certain bankers to cook the books, along with those in the banks who did so, go to jail. Our own Office of The Inspector General in the government has confirmed that there was an active conspiracy to break the law within the OTS, but not one indictment has been issued.
  • Those who committed fraud in the creation of this economic mess, whether they be mortgage lenders, those who packaged up securities while intentionally omitting credit information, those in the real estate industry to pressed for appraisal fraud and others are investigated, prosecuted and if convicted jailed. All of them.
  • Losses are born by those who made bad decisions, not the taxpayer generally. Those who made good decisions get to reap the benefits, while those who made bad decisions eat the losses. No exceptions.
  • Government cuts the annual budget deficit to zero. If government wants to blow the money it has to have the money. If they can't raise the money they don't spend it. It is time to live within our means and hold government to account for its profligate spending along with promises of "benefits" they know they cannot actually deliver down the road such as Medicare Part D.

Until then the position of those who wish to join is simple: No non-essential purchases of anything are made. Period.

What's an essential purchase? Here's the list:

  • Enough food to eat at home. No more eating out.
  • Rent and utilities.
  • Essential medical services.
  • Enough fuel to get to and from work.

In addition any "excess withholding" is stopped; if you are getting a big fat refund from the IRS every year you are loaning the government your money at zero interest until April. Stop that; its stupid. Change your W4 so you get exactly nothing back or owe a tiny amount; if you pay estimates pay only that which you must and not one dime more.

Note that it is unlawful to use your W4 to intentionally under-withhold, but you are in fact not obligated to pay one more dime in tax than you actually owe. There is nothing wrong with adjusting withholding to match (as close as you reasonably can) your actual tax obligation.

Put the money you save (it will be a lot!) into a non-TARP Credit Union if you have one available to you, or a non-TARP local bank if you do not. Spend none of it.

If we pledge to do this and not resume normal spending habits on wants as opposed to needs until and unless the budget is balanced, the bailouts are rolled back and those who committed fraud go to prison the government will be forced to act as they will simply run out of money.

They cannot force you to buy that new iPOD or flatscreen TV, or to take an expensive vacation.

Consumer spending is 70% of the economy.

This is a consumer weapon that is more powerful than any other means of peaceful protest. Strangling the government and private business' ability to steal from us all by cutting off their revenue will force reform, and has the additional benefit of being exactly what this nation needs to provide a strong capital formation base when that reform is complete.

If businesses want my money they can join in the chorus of voices demanding that government stop the looting and start prosecuting.

Will any of us be perfect in this endeavor? No. There will be the occasional indulgence I'm sure no matter who we are. But I'm willing to bet we can shrink consumption - each and every one of us - by at least 10% without any real personal pain at all, and if we do so it will send an indelible message to those in government and business: cut that crap out!

July 4th is Independence Day.

Let's make it a day of freedom from the banksters and government financial marauders.

Who's with me?

More on the missing bonds

In case you haven't heard anything about this, back on June 3rd, two Japanese nationals were stopped at Ponte Chiasso (Italy) on their way to Chiasso (Switzerland) carrying a briefcase with a hidden bottom. In this secret compartment, they found, are you ready....$134.5 BILLION in US Treasury Bills.

Supposedly they have been claimed to be fake, but not one Treasury official has gone over to view said treasuries to verify them. This is some freaky stuff. If you search for this, there's not much to be found. Isn't that odd considering the fact that, if these were real, these two Japanese nationals would have been the US's 4th largest creditor???

06/30/2009 13:13

ASIA-ITALY
Everything suggests that the American bonds seized at Chiasso are real
Official U.S. sources continue to say they are fakes, but there is no news that American experts have inspected them in person. Arrested for another matter, the director of a U.S. radio who says the bonds are real and Japan was trying to sell in Switzerland, not trusting the ability of the United States to honour its debt.

Milan (AsiaNews) – Four weeks have passed since American bonds were confiscated from two Japanese who were travelling on a direct train to Chiasso, Switzerland, and while there has been clarification of some points, very few, Italian authorities have remained silent on the rest of the episode.

In addition, a strange coincidence in the timing of the arrest of a director of an internet radio who had made revelations regarding the incident increases the already strong oddities surrounding the case. This added to the revaluation of the fact that among the evidence seized there were "Kennedy Bond" all points toward the authenticity of the items seized by the Guardia di Finanza (GdF) in early June.

The major English-speaking newspapers ignored the story for a couple of weeks. They only started to report on it after the Bloomberg agency carried a story on 18 / 6, in which a spokesman for the Treasury, Meyerhardt, declared that the bonds, based on photos available on the Internet, were "clearly false." The same day, the Financial Times (FT) published an article whose title laid the blame for the (alleged) infringement at the feet of the Italian Mafia, despite the fact that the article failed to make even one possible connection with the episode in Chiasso. Nevertheless, the version of events as reported in FT was taken up by others as being "appropriate" (given that it is a very common cliché about Italy and it is a sequester that took place in Italy) and in the end "colourful." It’s a pity that it goes against all logic: that the Mafia tried to pass unnoticed in its attempt to dump fake bonds amounting to 134.5 billion dollars and moreover were to "stung" a mere step from their gaol, is not very credible.

Most recently last week, 25 / 6, the New York Times reported on the story in particular, the allegations of CIA spokesman, Darrin Blackford: the U.S. Secret Service carried out inspections, as required by the Italian judiciary, and found that they were fictitious financial instruments, never issued by the “U.S. government”. It is not clear, however, how the checks mentioned Blackford were carried out and whether they were also are carried out via internet. According to official Italian sources, in fact, the Commission of American experts, expected in Italy, have yet to arrive. Furthermore, the bonds were accompanied by a recent and original bank record. It is therefore unclear how the U.S. authorities can declare fake documentation that does not originate from the Fed or the U.S. Department of Treasury.

On the contrary, claims in support of the bond’s authenticity were made 20 / 6 on the Turner Radio Network (TRN), an independent radio station broadcast via Internet. On that date in a massive exposure, TRN stated that the two Japanese arrested by the Guardia di Finanza (GdF) and then released in Ponte Chiasso were employees of the Japanese Ministry for Treasury. AsiaNews had also received similar reports: one of the two Japanese arrested in Chiasso and then released is Tuneo Yamauchi, brother of Toshiro Muto, until recently vice governor of the Bank of Japan. On its website, the creator and presenter of Radio, Hal Turner, had also claimed that his sources had revealed that the Italian authorities believe the evidence to be authentic and that the two Japanese officials are from the Japanese Ministry for Finance. They were supposed to bring the bonds to Switzerland because the Japanese government had apparently lost confidence in U.S. ability to repay its debt. Japanese financial authorities therefore were trying to sell a part of the securities in their possession through parallel channels ahead of an imminent financial disaster, thanks to the anonymity which, Turner said, is guaranteed by the laws of Switzerland.

AsiaNews does not know to what extent Turner’s revelations can be held as credible, given that in this case too, it is difficult to believe that $ 134.5 billion would pass unnoticed anywhere in the world. It seems far more logical to assume that the bonds, if authentic, were directed to the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, BIS, the central bank of central banks ahead of the issuance of securities in a new supranational currency. Turner had in any event added that as evidence of his support of his revelations he would have provided the serial numbers of the seized bonds. Before it could do so, however, was imprisoned. Hal Turner is the journalist who long ago first broke the news of a secret plan to replace the dollar, after a severe financial crisis, with a common North American currency, the Amero. In a dramatic phone call from inside the prison in which he is detained pending trial, relayed via internet, Hal Turner claims that his arrest is political and it is in relation to securities seized in Chiasso, because the authorities are terrorized by his revelations regarding the bonds’ authenticity. Of course, the allegations made against him have to nothing to do with the story and thus an already intricate story becomes increasingly complex. Turner maintains that he did not personally formulate the disclosure for which he has been imprisoned. Although it was clearly his responsibility to remain vigilant, it is also true that blogs from around the world and the U.S. themselves are full of threats and provocations. The coincidental timing, the unusual diligence and the details of his arrest arouse suspicions about the true motives of the American federal police. Indeed, this very arrest suggests that the evidence seized from GdF are truly authentic.

One more element in favour of the bond’s authenticity is found in the securities, which in the June 4 statement, the GdF termed "Kennedy Bonds” with photos provided. These photos reveal that the securities under discussion are not bonds but Treasury Notes, because they are securities that can be immediately exchanged for their worth in goods or services and because they are devoid of interest coupons. One side carries a reproduction of the image of the American president, the reverse side that of a spaceship. From confidential, usually well-informed sources, AsiaNews has learned that this type of paper money was issued less than ten years ago (in 1998), although it is difficult to know whether those seized in Chiasso are authentic. But the fact that the release of this particular State Treasury was not completely in the public domain tends to exclude the possibility of counterfeiting. It highly unreasonable to suppose that a forger would reproduce a State Treasury not commonly in circulation and of which there is no public knowledge. For this reason, it can be concluded that the 124.5 billion dollars divided in 249 bonds of 500 million each are authentic. These titles, although referred to as "Federal Reserve Notes" are actually bonds, because they accrue interest and are redeemable at maturity. But one question remains unsolved regarding them. It is somewhat hard to understand why the securities, which were from the outset indistinguishable from the original to the GdF, all have their coupons. Any ordinary investor, even a state, would have cashed in the interest coupon every year, so as not to lose purchasing power.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

THEIR STILL AT IT!!!!!

I just read today that, like Dick, Bush is at the wheels of the spin (excuse?) machine!!! At a speech yesterday he said the following regarding the election in Iran:

"Clearly, there's a level of frustration on the Iranian streets," Mr. Bush said. "It looks like it's not a very fair election."

Uhm, 'scuse me? Bush v. Gore, 531 U.S. 98 (2000)

View information on the speech here: The Washington Times

Seems the Iranians have more courage & passion than do Americans if you ask me.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Space rocks are now classified

been awhile since i've written on here, but been feeling the need to write, just haven't gotten around to it. thought i would use this time to put some things down that need to mentioned:

why would the government, you know, our govt, classify debris that falls from space?? found this on cryptogon.com (great site, i highly reccomend):Military Hush-up: Incoming space rocks now classified. I mean, what could they want to hide? Is there a new NEO coming that they don't want to panick us about? I don't know, but it just sounds weird to me.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Here's another "what ya need to know but probably don't"

I'm going to throw out a name that many people haven't thought of lately: Eliot Spitzer.

Remember him? The disgraced NY Attorney General who paid for a high paid call girl. He was linked with a "prostitution ring". Brought down by an "investigation" into his finances:

"The suspicious financial activity was initially reported by a bank to the IRS which, under direction from the Justice Department, brought in the FBI's Public Corruption Squad. "

The whole thing against him was, to me, a little weird. What, so he was moving money around? How many people with alot of money do that with no repercussions?

Well, there's always more to a story, and now Elliot is talking:

www.alternet.com

AND, it's almost one year to the date that he fell from grace that the financial system is fallen to pieces because of AIG and their buds at Goldman & Merryl.

There's an old saying that I love by Thomas H. Huxley, an english biologist from the 19th century: "Sit down before fact like a little child, and be prepared to give up every preconceived notion. Follow humbly wherever and to whatever abyss nature leads, or you shall learn nothing."

Friday, March 6, 2009

The American hothead: what you need to know but probably don't.

There's an old movie called Network.It's about Howard Beale "an acclaimed news anchorman on UBS T.V. He was a mandarin of television with a HUT rating of 16 and a 28 audience share. In 1969, however, his fortunes began to decline. He fell to a 22 share. The following year, his wife died, and he was left a childless widower with an 8 rating and a 12 share. He became morose and isolated, started to drink heavily, and on September 22, 1975, he was fired, effective in two weeks." That's where it gets interesting.

He starts to go a little crazy and goes on the air unscheduled and begins talking to the camera. He talks about everything that was going on at that point in history: oil prices, corporations dumping, writing to your congressman, tons of stuff.

He goes on & on spewing all sorts of things. Here's a link to the part of the movie that I'm talking about: Howard Beale.

That's what this blog is all about. IM MAD AS HELL AND IM NOT GONNA TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!

That is how I feel nowadays: Every time I read a report about how safe vaccines are for kids. Every time i read how wall street needs another bailout. Every time i read how banks are failing.

I feel MAD AS HELL!!!

It's how I feel when I see commercials telling us that we need to be "one less" girl who will get ovarian cancer by taking the vaccine Gardisil. A drug that the drug companies are on a crusade
to get legislation passed to make it MANDATORY that all girls AND boys (since boys can be a carrier) get vaccinated by the time they are 12 or 13! A drug which has already killed several girls!CBS News

It's how I feel when I find out that the federal reserve is in no way associated with the Federal government in any shape whatsoever! That the bankers of the world control our government in a way the founding fathers of this great country were fearful of because they knew what it meant to put the power to control money into the hands of those with the money. The money changers as they were known. Hence why they had given the job of coining money to congress who back in the twenties, made the ultimate wanton mistake of giving that power over to the Fed, or otherwise known as the privately held banking cartel.

It's how i feel when i learn exactly what fractional reserve banking is: the standard operating procedure within our current mometary system. Check this out It's long, but worth watching.

It's how I feel when I find out the new "green" light bulbs (the spiral ones that reduce energy) contain mercury at high enough levels that if you were to break one in your home, you need to open all the windows, remove all pets and people for a minimum of fifteen minutes. Check it out for yourself at the EPA's website: Mercury Spills Then, you can't just dispose of the bulbs in the garbage because they are TOXIC and will contaminate the environment! There are guidelines to disposing of this hazardous waste, which, of course, everyone is completely aware of.

So this little place in cyberspace is where I intend to rant on about just about anything that I believe we have had our heads in the sand about.

Some future topics will include:
• the federal reserve
• aspartame (coke & pepsi working with companies that make it and the new stuff truvia); rumsfelds connection with big pharma
• No bid contracts
• big pharma influencing govt
• big companies influence on govt
• the commercial real estate bubble
• taxes
Lincoln & Kennedy assassination
thimerisol
• NWO the new world order
Nazis utilized by the govt - project paperclip
• flouride
• Rumsfelds influence on aspartame
• States claiming their sovereignty not making headline news
• The ownership of the major media corporations
• mercury in everything and the government telling us it's not bad
for us
• Teflon