“Sovereign Risk” – This Is How Easily Your Property Can Be Confiscated

Submitted by Simon Black via Sovereign Man blog, This is a great example of ‘sovereign risk’: One of my close friends here in Singapore opened a brokerage account last year with Interactive Brokers. If you’re not familiar, Interactive Brokers is a leading securities broker based in Greenwich, Connecticut. You can trade stocks, currencies, options… all that stuff. Now, my friend is not a US resident (he lives here in Singapore), nor is he a US citizen. He opened his account through their Asian branch in Hong Kong, funded the account from here in Singapore, and then bought some Canadian stocks listed on the Toronto stock exchange. Nothing about his investments had anything to do with the United States. So you could imagine his surprise when he received a recent email from Interactive Brokers informing him that his account was about to be “escheated to the state”. Yeah, I had […] Read More

The Paradox Inherent in Any Slave Nation Revolution

The Paradox Inherent in Any Slave Nation Revolution Even When the Sociopaths Lose They Win By Cognitive Dissonance How exactly do you cook a nutritious meal if all you have are spoiled ingredients? The answer depends upon your definition of nutritious and who is eating the meal……and, of course, your level of hunger and growing desperation. It is telling how much less discerning we become when the hunger pains boom in our belly and our mind becomes ever more focused on the single minded obsession of relieving our pain rather than pursuing our pleasure. Although at some point down the slippery slope relieving our pain is pursuing our pleasure. If I carefully tend my garden, making certain the soil is thoroughly turned and pulverized, the seeds and seedlings properly planted, the area fertilized, weeded and watered and yet my garden’s yield is poor year after year after year, at […] Read More

19 Surprising Facts About The Messed Up State Of The US Economy

Submitted by Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog, Barack Obama and the Federal Reserve are lying to you.  The “economic recovery” that we all keep hearing about is mostly just a mirage.  The percentage of Americans that are employed has barely budged since the depths of the last recession, the labor force participation rate is at a 36 year low, the overall rate of homeownership is the lowest that it has been in nearly 20 years and approximately 49 percent of all Americans are financially dependent on the government at this point.  In a recent article, I shared 12 charts that clearly demonstrate the permanent damage that has been done to our economy over the last decade.  The response to that article was very strong.  Many people were quite upset to learn that they were not being told the truth by our politicians and by the mainstream media.  […] Read More

Happy Birthday Paper Money: 353 Years Of Wanton Destruction

Submitted by Simon Black of Sovereign Man blog, If you ever find yourself vacationing in the western Pacific, I highly recommend swinging by Yap Island, home of one of the most bizarre forms of money in history. Over a thousand years ago, natives would mine enormous chunks of limestone and carve them into gigantic circular discs. I’m talking REALLY big… a typical disc would be 5 to 10 feet in diameter, over a foot thick, and weigh several tons. They called them ‘Rai Stones’, and they were actually used as currency. Curiously, an indiviaul rai would be valued not based on its weight or size, but based on its story. If many people had been killed transporting it, or if the stone had once belonged to a famous warrior, the rai would be worth more. So it was a bit of a collectible as well as a form of […] Read More

“There Is No Honest Pricing Left” – The Epochal Error Of Modern Central Banking

Submitted by David Stockman of Contra Corner blog, David Stockman, Director of the Office of Management and Budget under Reagan, former Congressman, and author of the bestseller The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America, discusses his book, the gold standard, bailouts, and the problems the American economy faces today. Mises Institute: In the book, you oppose Bernanke’s view of the Great Depression, which you point out relies heavily on the views of Milton Friedman. David Stockman: Bernanke has cultivated this idea that he is a brilliant scholar of The Great Depression, but that’s not true at all. What Bernanke did was basically copy Milton Friedman’s misguided and very damaging theory that the Federal Reserve didn’t expand its balance sheet fast enough by massive open market purchases of government debt during the Great Depression. Bernanke therefore claimed that monetary stringency deepened and lengthened the depression, but in fact interest […] Read More

Lessons From Central Bank Crisis Management (Intervention) During Wall Street’s First Crash (1792)

The New York Fed’s historical appreciation society has looked back at what was likely the US’ first crash and foud that Alexander Hamilton’s actions in 1792 which they claim “appears to have effectively managed the crisis with little or no long-term spillover to the economy,” has now become the blueprint for manipulative intervention until this day by the central planners who know far better than ‘us’ collectively… Authored by James Narron and David Skeie of Liberty Street Economics. As we observed in our last post on the Continental Currency Crisis, the finances of the United States remained chaotic through the 1780s as the young government moved to establish its credit. U.S. Congress was finally given the power of taxation in 1787 and, in 1789, Alexander Hamilton was appointed as the first Secretary of the Treasury. Hamilton moved quickly to begin paying off war debts and to establish a national […] Read More

Tim Geithner Admits “Too Big To Fail” Hasn’t Gone Anywhere (And That’s The Way He Likes It)

Submitted by Mike Krieger of Liberty Blitzkrieg blog, But it is now clear that Geithner never believed his own talking points. To him, too-big-to-fail and the so-called moral hazard, or safety net, that it would create can’t really ever be fully taken away. During his lecture to Summers’s class, one student asked a question about “resolution authority,” a provision of the reform laws that is supposed to let the government wind down a complex financial institution without creating a domino effect. The question prompted Geithner onto a tangent about too-big-to-fail. “Does it still exist?” he said. “Yeah, of course it does.” Ending too-big-to-fail was “like Moby-Dick for economists or regulators. It’s not just quixotic, it’s misguided.” – From The New York Times Magazine article, What Timothy Geithner Really Thinks Never in a million years did I think I’d ever use an article by Andrew Ross Sorkin as the basis […] Read More

Say Goodbye To “Net Neutrality” – New FCC Proposal Will Permit Discrimination Of Web Content

Submitted by Mike Krieger of Liberty Blitzkrieg blog, The concept of “net neutrality” is not an easy one to wrap your head around. Particularly if you aren’t an expert in how the internet works and if you don’t work for an ISP (internet service provider). In fact, I think that lobbyists and special interest groups make the concept intentionally difficult and convoluted so that the average person’s eyes glaze over and they move on to the next topic. I am by no means an expert in this area; however, in this post I will try to explain in as simple terms as possible what “net neutrality” means and what is at risk with the latest FCC proposal. I also highlight a wide variety of articles on the subject, so I hope this post can serve as a one-stop-shop on the issue. The concept of “net neutrality” describes how broadband […] Read More

David Stockman On ‘The QE Follies’: Bernanke’s Swell Gift To The Big Four Banks

Submitted by David Stockman via Contra Corner blog, I recently pointed out that the Fed’s 5-year campaign to drive the 30-year mortgage rate from 6.5% to 3.3% had accomplished nothing except to touch off another of those pointless “refi” booms which enable homeowners to swap an existing mortgage for a new one carrying a significantly lower interest rate and monthly service cost. Such debt churning exercises have been sponsored repeatedly by the Fed since the S&L debacle of the late 1980s. I further noted that this time the Fed had really outdone itself: During some periods upwards of 80% of new originations were not money purchase mortgages to finance a new home, the declared purpose of interest rate repression, but just refis of existing debt. By resorting to this maneuver to leave more money in the pocket of borrowers each month, our monetary central planners undoubtedly hoped that America’s flagging consumers would buy […] Read More