Reading on a Saturday Morning

To quote two of Gutie's lovely boys

 



Mayer Amschel Rothschild




Baron Nathan Mayer Rothschild

 

Sort of makes you want to wonder which asshole has been controlling the damn thing around here lately.

 Don't it?

 

Bacha Posh?

 

 

I don't even know what to think about this one.

This six page article takes some time to read but could hardly be more ........... something.

From The New York Times.

Click the photo for the entire piece.

 

Afghan Boys Are Prized, So Girls Live the Part

 By JENNY NORDBERG September 20, 2010

 Mehran Rafaat, 6, left, and her twin sisters, Benafsha, center and Beheshta, near their home in Badghis Province, Afghanistan

 KABUL, Afghanistan — Six-year-old Mehran Rafaat is like many girls her age. She likes to be the center of attention. She is often frustrated when things do not go her way. Like her three older sisters, she is eager to discover the world outside the family’s apartment in their middle-class neighborhood of Kabul.

But when their mother, Azita Rafaat, a member of Parliament, dresses the children for school in the morning, there is one important difference. Mehran’s sisters put on black dresses and head scarves, tied tightly over their ponytails. For Mehran, it’s green pants, a white shirt and a necktie, then a pat from her mother over her spiky, short black hair. After that, her daughter is out the door — as an Afghan boy.

There are no statistics about how many Afghan girls masquerade as boys. But when asked, Afghans of several generations can often tell a story of a female relative, friend, neighbor or co-worker who grew up disguised as a boy. To those who know, these children are often referred to as neither “daughter” nor “son” in conversation, but as “bacha posh,” which literally means “dressed up as a boy” in Dari.

 

Reading on a Sunday Morning, yet again

 

 

Bill Simon, CEO of Wal-Mart’s U.S. business,  on behavior at a Walmart store around midnight at the end of a month:

“The paycheck cycle we’ve talked about before remains extreme.

It is our responsibility to figure out how to sell in that environment, adjusting pack sizes, large pack at sizes the beginning of the month, small pack sizes at the end of the month.

And to figure out how to deal with what is an ever-increasing amount of transactions being paid for with government assistance.

“And you need not go further than one of our stores on midnight at the end of the month.

And it’s real interesting to watch, about 11 p.m., customers start to come in and shop, fill their grocery basket with basic items, baby formula, milk, bread, eggs,and continue to shop and mill about the store until midnight, when electronic — government electronic benefits cards get activated and then the checkout starts and occurs.

And our sales for those first few hours on the first of the month are substantially and significantly higher.

“And if you really think about it, the only reason somebody gets out in the middle of the night and buys baby formula is that they need it, and they’ve been waiting for it.

Otherwise, we are open 24 hours, come at 5 a.m., come at 7 a.m., come at 10 a.m.

But if you are there at midnight, you are there for a reason.”

 

 

Costs to the Government

 

From The Washington Post via Chart Porn.

An excellent interactive that demonstrates the differing consequences of allowing some or all of "The Bush Tax Cuts" to expire ....... or not.

What's really interesting to me are the headings within the interactive.

 

Let all cuts expire - Cost to Gov't: No cost

Obama's plan - Cost to Gov't: $3 trillion

Extend all cuts - Cost to Gov't: $3.7 trillion

 

If you just sit there and think about it even a little, shouldn't it read? 

 

Let all cuts expire - Cost to American Taxpayers - $3.7 trillion

Obama's plan - Cost to American Taxpayers - $700 Billion

Extend all cuts - Cost to American Taxpayers: No additional cost

 

Click on the chart below to link to the interactive. 

 

 

 

Reading on a Saturday Morning

 

One of the first posts at the old Justthinking.us was also one of the first posts brought across to the new (this) Justthinking.us.

It was titled, Race, Family, Crime and Poverty.

It mostly had to do with ....... you know ....... Race, Family, Crime and Poverty.

It ends with a short discussion of and link to the famed Moynihan Report of 1965, which offers the following on the state of affairs in Black America in that year.

 

The evidence — not final, but powerfully persuasive — is that the Negro family in the urban ghettos is crumbling.

 
 
So anyway .......
 
I was poking around at Fred on Everything this morning.
 
And having exhausted that content which offers a laugh at the expense of Fred's frustrations and outrage over the state of the world we live in, I scrolled upon his essay titled, Rape in Tennessee.
 
I knew this material, having been directed to it some years ago by one of you ..... Rachel ..... maybe.
 
It's real damn ugly, so despite the fact that I've linked it, leave it alone, unless you're in a mood.
 
Seriously.
 
Anyway, after you get past the initial ugliness, Fred shares his views on Black on White crime and the way it's reported in the media. 
 
Among the items on Fred's long and strange resume' is a tour as the law enforcement columnist at the Washington Times.
 
The result of which is a point of view about race, cops, and crime that is not presented by organized media.
 
Fred on Everything is disorganized media.
 
To his credit, he's man enough to admit it.
 
Somewhere in the middle of all Fred's stuff, is a link to the following report.
 
It's very different from anything you'll get anywhere else, and that includes Fox.
 
Click anywhere below to link to the entire report.
 
 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
And that's how I spent my Saturday morning.
 

A brand new conspiracy theory.

 

First of all, apologies to Shannara Johnson and Casey Research who week after week are providing consistently good stuff, as I cut and pasted the entirety of the following article which was published yesterday, July 30, 2010 at Casey's Daily Dispatch along with some other good stuff under the heading, A Rock and a Hard Place.

Secondly, apologies to you, as this one hopefully will take up a little more or your time than I usually shoot for.

As you know, when I find something I like, usually I just grab off a paragraph or two along with the heading and the byline and just link you up to the site itself.

My opinion is that about half of you follow the link.

My hope is that all of you will read this one to the end.

Please do.

Remembering all the while.


Really, it isn't like I ever ask all that much from you ..... you know, the occasional comment ..... maybe ask how I'm doing before you call me a fascist moron.

You know who you are!!!

Something Fishy About RightHaven Suits?

By Shannara Johnson

Cracking down on the blogosphere seems to have become the latest fashion. Since March, lawsuits were filed against at least 88 blogs, message boards, advocacy organizations, and other websites, according to various news reports.

And they’re all coming from the same source: Las Vegas-based RightHaven, a firm that deals with copyright infringement.

Reason.com reports that “RightHaven’s business model involves acquiring the copyrights for specific articles originally published by the Las Vegas Review-Journal, then filing lawsuits against website owners who have posted those articles without permission.”

The owners of one of the affected sites called The Armed Citizen, Clayton Cramer and David Burnett, complained to Reason magazine that they never even got a chance to remove the articles in question. “With our e-mail addresses right there on the front page [of our site], all it would have taken is an e-mail asking us to remove or alter the listing so as not to infringe,” said Burnett. “By not contacting any of the websites with a takedown notice beforehand, they’re showing they’re interested in money, not resolution.”

Which Steve Gibson, CEO of RightHaven, readily admits to. “Media companies’ assets are very much their copyrights,” he told Reason. “These companies need to understand and appreciate that those assets have value more than merely the present advertising revenues.”

With many of the targeted sites being blogs, conspiracy message boards, and government-critical websites, however, some of the victims suspect much more sinister motives behind RightHaven’s attacks. The legal trouble, they believe, may be part of a larger operation initiated by the Obama administration to silence independent, critical voices on the Internet.

And browsing the evidence, this contention may be not be all that far-fetched.

Recently, Blogetery.com, a little-known Wordpress platform, was abruptly shut down by its hosting company, BurstNet, taking down about 73,000 blogs. According to CNET, “[the] service was terminated at the request of some law enforcement agency, but [BurstNet] wouldn’t say which one. As for the reason, BurstNet hasn’t made that clear either.”

Rumors have it that the government may have gotten involved as part of anti-piracy operations, but many liberty advocates don’t buy it. And who can blame them, with frustrated sound bites coming from President Obama himself, implying that unsympathetic bloggers may have a part in his inability to connect with the public.

In January, an obscure academic article from 2008 made the rounds in the blogosphere that had been written by Obama’s information czar, Prof. Cass Sunstein.

Here’s an excerpt:

Why should you be worried about this?

Glenn Greenwald from Salon.com explains it:

FOX’s John Stossel hit the nail on the head, quipping, “That's right. Obama's Regulation Czar is so concerned about citizens thinking the wrong way that he proposed sending government agents to ‘infiltrate’ these groups and manipulate them. This reads like an Onion article: Powerful government official proposes to combat paranoid conspiracy groups that believe the government is out to get them...by proving that they really are out to get them.” 
And the RightHaven case has only fueled the fears – especially since evidence points to potentially close ties between the Obamas and Gibson.

Recently targeted by RightHaven, outraged members of the conspiracy message board godlikeproductions.com (GLP) set out to get to the bottom of the matter, digging in RightHaven CEO Steven A. Gibson’s background.

According to a resume found on the Net, Gibson attended the Chicago-Kent Collage of Law and graduated cum laude in 1990, and, his work history states, “Prior to establishing his own firm, Mr. Gibson was an associate at Sidley Austin LLP,” a Chicago-based law firm.

President Obama’s Wikipedia page, in turn, states that “In late 1988, Obama entered Harvard Law School. . . During his summers, he returned to Chicago, where he worked as a summer associate at the law firms of Sidley Austin in 1989 and Hopkins & Sutter in 1990.”

Coincidence? GLPers don’t think so, especially considering that Michelle Obama, too, is in the picture. “She met Barack Obama when they were among the few African Americans at their law firm, Sidley Austin . . . and she was assigned to mentor him as a summer associate.” (Wikipedia)

“At the firm,” the Wikipedia page goes on, “she worked on marketing and intellectual property,” the latter being Gibson’s specialty as well.

In other words, it would be reasonable to assume that Barack and Michelle Obama and Steven Gibson have known each other for 20 years and (of course this is conjecture) may even have been, or still be, friends. Making Gibson the perfect henchman, the conspiracists surmise, to carry out Obama’s death sentence on free Internet speech and open dissent.

Tall tales or the beginning of the end for a truly free Internet? We’ll see; but we will keep our eyes open to other warning signs.

 

Bill Bonner goes off

 

I like Bill Bonner a lot.

I've read "The Daily Reckoning" for a long time and rarely skip his column.

But clearly, he has been spending way too much time with "The Mogambo Guru".

And that can't possibly be good for anybody's mental health.

 

“The West is doomed.

It is already second rate.

It just doesn't realize it yet.

The Chinese work harder.

They save more.

They are better organized...and probably smarter.

And there are more of them.

They are not burdened by two centuries of success ... neither by expensive social welfare programs, nor by a Goliath military-industrial complex, nor by thousands of lobbyists, lawyers, and educators.

The return on investment capital is higher.

You just have to pay off an official or two.

In America and Europe, you have to pay off the entire establishment ... the unions, the politicians (local, state and national), the hacks, the regulators, the pentagon, the meddlers, the do-gooders, the unemployed, the contractors, the public employees, the poor, the rich, the halt, the lame ...

... every leech in Christendom ....

It is just a matter of time before the Chinese take over.

Soon, they will be the richest, most advanced, most accomplished people on earth...its leading innovators, its greatest artists and architects ... its standout scientists ... and its top military power.”

 Bill Bonner

 Or, as Mogambo himself might say (WFD)

 

On the other hand



You get Richard Maybury

 

“We have almost no way of tracking what is really happening in China.

The statistics are generated by government agencies that feel no obligation to be truthful to the western devils who overran China in the 19th and 20th centuries.

The numbers are quoted in the mainstream press as if they are reliable, but they aren’t, except in the sense that they tell us what the Chinese regime wants us to think…

It’s likely, in my opinion, that for all practical purposes, absolutely every modern Chinese company is malinvestment.

Its buildings, equipment and workers are in the wrong places doing the wrong things at the wrong prices. These businesses were erected in artificial hot spots created by the injections of fiat currency.

For the present, as long as the supply of fiat currency continues to rain down, the Chinese economy will look fine.

But when the value of the yuan begins to drop sharply, Chinese officials will be faced with a terrifying choice: continue inflating the money supply to prop up the cones, until the yuan is worthless, or stop, and watch the entire economy go belly up.

Neither choice is likely to lead to social harmony.

China’s population reportedly numbers 1.35 billion. About 60% are working age. 

Hundreds of millions live just one paycheck ahead of starvation.

They all know the elite in the cities wallow in luxury…

The fact that at least some Chinese leaders do not want the yuan to climb against the dollar is strong evidence they know what they’ve done.

If the yuan rises much — perhaps 20% or more — prices of Chinese exports will rise, sales will fall, and the shakeout will return.

Tens of thousands of businesses will go under, and mobs of unemployed will begin pouring into the streets.

So, I think some or all the Chinese leadership know they’re facing a Stephen King nightmare…

How big will the disaster be?

I think it has the potential to be the worst in human history —worse than the Black Death, the Dark Ages, the fall of the Roman Empire, you name it.

If just 4% of the population is killed, it will be the worst bloodbath ever, surpassing even the total global body count of World War II.

This kind of thing has happened before in China many times.

Atrocities there are not done halfheartedly…

China is a house of cards, and the bigger they build it, the harder it will fall.

In my opinion, the folks in the Pentagon should be thinking about that;

it is destined to become their problem…

In my opinion, the West’s outdated Keynesian economics has set China up to be the worst catastrophe in history…”

Richard Maybury, Early Warning Report, 05-10

 

OK then ... now I feel much better.


Field of Dreams is right

 

The "Field of Dreams" farm can be yours for a paltry $5,400,000.

The entire 193 acre farm including the house, two concession stands and six out buildings is being offered by Don and Becky Lansing whose family has held the farm for over a century.

 

 

Now, I have been to the "Field of Dreams" farm.

Hit some fly balls out to the kids, played a little Pickle, dropped a hundred and a half at the concession stand on sweatshirts, midget bats, refrigerator magnets and ice cream bars.

And as far as I'm concerned, it is one of the most beautiful and tranquil places I have ever been.

If you like that kind of stuff.

And I do, I just love the smell of horse shit ..... seriously. 

I'd give my left testicle to have a place like this.

 

If only I could convince the little wiffer and the kids to give up life as they know it and move to the middle of Iowa.

 

So, just because this happens to be what I do,(when there's something to do) and mostly because I just flat out can't help myself .....

I get out my trusty hp12c and do the math.

 

OK, that's $5,400,000 divided by 193 ... 

$27,979.28 (rounded to the nearest penny) per acre.

Feels a little optimistic ... let's do some shopping.


IOWA COUNTY

Description:

465 acres, m/l, located west of Parnell. 212 acres CRP. 14 acres cropland with the balance in good pasture. Includes a farm house and cattle barns. This would make a good income producing livestock farm. $2,300/A

Contact:

Mt. Vernon Office 319-895-8858

Description:

168 acres, m/l, located approximately 8 miles northeast of Newton on N 75th Ave E. Estimated 165 crop acres with CSR of 64.1. No buildings. $4,613/A

Contact:

Nevada Office 515-382-1500

Description:

267 acres, m/l, located northwest of Letts. 123.4 cropland acres with a 68.4 CSR. 43.5 acres are in CRP with balance in mature timber. Includes a well maintained home with nice outbuildings. $3,200/A

Contact:

Mt. Vernon Office 319-895-8858

 
Yup, a little high.
 
But wait a minute .....
 
They say they do about 60,000 people a year. 

"People will come Ray."
"It's money they have, it's peace they lack."
 
Let's see, 60,000 fish at $10 bucks per .....
 
$20 you say?
 
That would be $1,200,000 in gross sales.
 
Expenses around 50% ... 60%?
 
Probably about half cash?
 
You know ..... those pesky quarters are just so damn hard to keep track of.
 
Hmmmmmmmm.
 
 

To quote John Hathaway



The US Mint is suspended its production of 1 oz. gold eagle and gold buffalo coins three times in 2009

 Over the last decade the DJIA is down about 80% against gold.

 

  The following is from John Hathaway at Tocqueville Asset Management 11/30/2009

Click anywhere below to link up to the entire piece.

 

“The supply of gold increases at a far slower rate than that of paper money. Each year, the gold mining industry produces around 2500 metric tonnes of the metal.

This quantity adds a puny 1% or 2% to the above ground supply of 163,000 or so metric tonnes.

Unlike economically sensitive commodities, to which it is frequently and incorrectly linked, gold does not get used up.

Therefore, traditional supply and demand analysis does little to explain price movement.

It is better to think of gold as a multi trillion dollar capital market asset.

In theory, all of it  is potentially for sale at any given time.

Price behavior is best explained by macroeconomic considerations and the greater investment climate rather than micro economic considerations such as mine expansions or jewelry consumption.

To speak of a rising gold price is technically incorrect.

What appears to be a rising metal price is an illusion that signifies the declining value of paper currency and, more
important, the wealth that it measures.

Gold per se does not excite the investment world. It has not suddenly changed its stripes.

What has changed is the world around it.

What has come into view is the seemingly real prospect for the dollar and other paper currency to lose future value…

“In our opinion, the investment rationale for gold, in today’s circumstances, is deflation.

The post World War II economic model of economic growth based on secular credit expansion is broken.

We believe the applicable model is a 1930’s style credit deflation.

Asset prices are pressured by deleveraging.

Uncertainty as to collateral values restricts credit despite available liquidity.

The contraction of credit hurts economic activity, causing incomes to fall and asset values to fall further.

A negative shift in expectations rapidly overtakes behavior.

There is little government policy can do about this other than to devalue currency to lessen debt burdens.

The Fed understands this and is acting accordingly.

Keynesian stimulus packages at best mean that government spending replaces lost private sector activity to stabilize the economy.

This is pretty much where things stand at the moment.

It remains to be seen whether massive stimulus can offset the headwinds of a negative credit cycle.

Since there is no way to know how these wild experiments in monetary and fiscal stimulus will turn out, investors are gravitating to gold, knowing that the integrity of the currency is the last thing on the minds of policy makers.

Gold is a wager that these measures will not restore economic health over the longer term and that further currency debasement will be deemed necessary…

“Zero interest rates are designed to encourage a new carry trade.

Free money is intended to inflate asset values in hopes of restarting the credit cycle.

In other words, our ‘leaders’ in Washington will solve the problem of too much debt with more debt.

Decades of credit excesses have brought us to the brink of a credit collapse.

Unfortunately, there is little to suggest introspection. Most expect and assume that government intervention will continue to work miracles.

Things should get really interesting for gold when government actions are seen to be impotent.

“As long as deflationary forces prevail, world governments will remain addicted to currency debasement.

If currencies are successfully debased through inflation, gold will retain its value.

The middle ground between deflation and inflation exists only in the imagination of policy makers and analysts who still believe governments can create wealth.

Gold is a hedge against a world monetary order on its death bed.”

John Hathaway, Tocqueville Asset Management L.P., 11-30-09

 

Reading on a Saturday Morning

 

To quote Richard Russell one more time,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He goes on to say something about denial, the NYSE, the administration, the Fed and clueless newspapers.

It all seemed redundant.

But then ...

He hits his stride.

 

 

 

 

And since we're on the subject of jokes .....

 

Reading on a Saturday Morning, Continues

 

To quote Bill Gross on ratings agencies,

 

"Their warnings were more than tardy when it came to the Enrons and the Worldcoms of ten years past, and most recently their blind faith in sovereign solvency has led to egregious excess in Greece and their southern neighbors.

The result has been the foisting of AAA ratings on an unsuspecting (and ignorant) investment public who bought the rating service Kool-Aid that housing prices could never really go down or that countries don’t go bankrupt.

Their quantitative models appeared to have a Mensa-like IQ of at least 160, but their common sense rating was closer to 60, resembling an idiot savant with a full command of the mathematics, but no idea of how to apply them."

 

And since we're on the subject of savants ...

 

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