Gold and Silver still extremely bullish for 2012, 2013
WASHINGTON (Commodity Online): Morgan Stanley still remains extremely upbeat on gold and silver for this year and next.
In a weekly commodities report, analysts note that gold hit a two-week high last week after a hint from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke that unconventional monetary measures may still be undertaken, before the metal succumbed to a higher U.S. dollar and quarter-end selling.
Gold is Still Getting Fixed
By Gary Tanashian - GoldSeek.com
So there was a panicky spike in gold last summer as the herd sought refuge from the euro, which was falling apart as some of its components had a really hard time peddling their legacy of debt.
This was going to be the big one as gold was finally going to blast off, better get aboard! You are a gold bug now and you are safe! No, unfortunately the new players were just being introduced to the overdone euphoria of the upside thrills, only to later be introduced to the bile of the inevitable downward reactions.
Dressing down the Fed:
Jim Grant on the Gold Standard and Fed manipulation
Some swingeing criticisms of Central Bank policies. Jim Grant talking on the Gold Standard and manipulation among others - and also expressing confidence in the gold price and gold and silver stocks.
Author: Lawrence Williams - Mineweb.com
One of gold's most respected mainstream commentators, Jim Grant of the highly regarded Grants Interest Rate Observer, appears not only to have come out with some overt criticism of the New York Fed's position on a Gold Standard, but according to GATA may have also joined the ranks of those who accept that the gold price is being manipulated and suppressed - although he didn't mention gold manipulation specifically in both an interview with CNBC and a presentation to the New York Fed itself, but spoke more in generalities about Fed manipulation in a number of less-defined market sectors. In his Fed address Grant said "What passes for sound doctrine in 21st-century central banking-so-called financial repression, interest-rate manipulation, stock-price levitation and money printing under the frosted-glass term "quantitative easing"...
US Mint Gold and Silver coin sales
rise in March but down Y-o-Y
NEW YORK (Commodity Online): United States Mint sales of gold and silver bullion coins rose from February to March but were down compared to the same month a year ago.
The Mint sold 62,500 ounces of gold coins in March, up from 21,000 in February although down from 127,000 in January, considered a seasonally strong month due to increased demand for a new year's mintage. The total for March was down from 73,500 ounces in the same period of 2011.
The Decline And Fall Of The USD
Julian D.W. Phillips - SilverBearCafe.com
In our previous article we looked at whether the U.S. Dollar was headed for a major fall or not. We demonstrated how the dominance of the U.S. dollar was almost entirely dependent on the grip it had over oil producers and this allowed the oil price to be disseminated in the U.S. dollar. The U.S. has gone to war in Kuwait and Iraq over this issue under the guise of destroying "weapons of Mass Destruction" as it appears on the verge of doing in Iran. It is no coincidence that Iran has long since ceased using the dollar to price its oil. It has also eliminated the U.S. dollar from its reserves. But of greater importance to the emerging world has been the use of the Belgian-based SWIFT system of international settlements. Not only has the move stopped the sale of Iranian oil, but it has also interfered with an important source of oil to the emerging world.
The case against killing the penny
Posted by Sarah Kliff - WashingtonPost.com
It's hard to think of a recent Canadian policy that's drawn as much praise as our Northern neighbor's decision last week to eliminate the penny.
"Canada wins race to eliminate the terrible penny," the Atlantic Wire proclaimed. The Washington Examiner declared the policy "a worthwhile Canadian initiative," referencing Jonathan Chait's much-belovedboring headline writing contest.
The economics, after-all, seemed pretty clear cut: It makes no sense to keep circulating an one-cent coin that costs 1.5-cents to produce. But over at The New Republic, Eric Wen flagssome research suggesting that there could be an economic downside to eliminating the penny, as it could have a disproportionately negative impact on the poor who tend to be more reliant on cash transactions.
Visible on the horizon: Inflation
Bill Fleckenstein - SilverBearCafe.com
People are beginning to realize that the inflation joke is on them, with rising prices everywhere and deflation nowhere in sight. Plus: Words of wisdom on gold.
I have owned gold and gold-related investments aggressively since 2001 for one main reason: the mismanagement at the U.S. Federal Reserve, with its unplanned and unarticulated determination to debase our currency and promote inflation.
The Next "Lehman Moment" Is Coming Fast
BY SHAH GILANI, Capital Waves Strategist, Money Morning
It seems that my latest edition of Insights & Indictments was warmly received by the bullish crowd, many of whom reached out to me to thank me for my optimism.
I'm sorry to burst your bubbles, but I am not a raging bull (but thank you for asking).
In fact, I'm still bearish.
There's a big difference between being bullish and playing all stocks (and other asset classes) from the long (that means "buy") side... and judiciously buying select momentum stocks with fat dividend yields, which is what I was recommending.
How Is This Recession Different From All Other Recessions?
It's not. Men, minorities, young people, and the under-educated suffered the most in the Great Recession, just like they did in every downturn for the past 30 years.
By Jordan Weissmann - TheAtlantic.com
Perhaps it's finally time to retire the phrase "mancession."
During the past few years, that grisly portmanteau has become a popular shorthand for the way men seemed to suffer a special degree of misfortune during the Great Recession. Male-dominated industries, particularly construction, had been at the heart of the housing bust and the ensuing downturn, and their job prospects diminished more as a result. Hence, a new turn of phrase was born.
Fade the Private Sector - Big Government Is Here for Good
BY DAVID KOTOK - FinancialSense.com
Dear reader: My friend Joe B. has experienced some of the world's exigencies. He thinks about them in the context of being a former Bostonian, and he said a few things at our last lunch together. His words caused me to reflect on the teaching of an earlier Bostonian. I originally sought a quote from the famous son, but as readers will see, I ended up with the father. We will dedicate this commentary to Joe B., who set me on the course for today's comments.
"The mind, once expanded to the dimensions of larger ideas, never returns to its original size." Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
Understanding The Slave Mentality
By Brandon Smith - Alt-Market.com
In the initial stages of nearly every recorded tyranny, the saucer eyed dumbstruck masses exhibit astonishing and masterful skill when denying reality. The facts behind their dire circumstances and of their antagonistic government become a source of cynical psychological gameplay rather than a source of legitimate concern. Their desperate need to maintain their normalcy bias creates a memory and observation vacuum in which all that runs counter to their false assumptions and preconceptions disappears forever. It is as if they truly cannot see the color of the sky, or the boot on their face. The concrete world of truth becomes a dream, an illusion that can be heeded or completely ignored depending on one's mood. For them, life is a constant struggle of dissociation, where the tangible is NOT welcome…
45 Signs That America Will Soon Be
A Nation With A Very Tiny Elite
And The Rest Of Us Will Be Poor
By Michael Snyder - EndOfTheAmericanDream.com
The middle class is being systematically wiped out of existence in the United States today. America is a nation with a very tiny elite that is rapidly becoming increasingly wealthy while everyone else is becoming poorer. So why is this happening? Well, it is actually very simple. Our institutions are designed to concentrate wealth in the hands of a very limited number of people. Throughout human history, almost all societies that have had a big centralized government have also had a very high concentration of wealth in the hands of the elite. Throughout human history, almost all societies that have allowed big business or big corporations to dominate the economy have also had a very high concentration of wealth in the hands of the elite. Well, the United States has allowed both big government and big corporations to grow wildly out of control. Those were huge mistakes. Our founding fathers attempted to establish a nation where the federal government would be greatly limited and where corporations would be greatly restricted. Unfortunately, we have turned our backs on those principles and now we are paying the price.
Who Captured the Fed?
JESSE'S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN
Future generations will look back and ask themselves, 'How could they not see what was happening? Were they blind?'
The Fed is not the only problem here, but a key enabler. White collar crimes and fraud flourished amongst the robber barons even in the days of the gold standard. It just was not as convenient, as easy, to defraud the people en masse through the debasement of the currency.
The Fed has merely proven to be as vulnerable as the regulators and the Congress to the power of the monied interests. If the political campaign process had not been corrupted by money, if the fairness doctrine in the media and Glass-Steagall in banking had not been overturned by the mindless impulse to cast aside the best of the laws, many of the problems we have today would not be so great.
Assailing the Supreme Court
The legal left echoes Newt Gingrich on judicial power.
After last week's Supreme Court argument on ObamaCare, the political left seems to be suffering a nervous breakdown. Only a week ago, the liberal consensus was that the federal mandate to buy insurance couldn't possibly be overturned. Now as panic sets in, the left has taken to mau-mauing the Justices by saying that if they overturn the mandate they'll be acting like political partisans. The High Court's very "legitimacy" will be in question, as one editorial put it—a view repeated across the liberal commentariat.
New spotlight on state responses to health-care law
By N.C. Aizenman - WashingtonPost.com
Variations in the way states have moved to implement the 2010 federal health-care law have taken on greater significance after last week's Supreme Court hearings, whose tone heightened speculation that the statute would be overturned.
With the exception of Arizona, all of the states and the District of Columbia have amended their health insurance rules or practices to comply with mandates imposed by the law. Those mandates include the elimination of lifetime coverage limits and the requirement that many insurers allow parents to put adult children younger than 26 on their plans.
Obama 'confident' Supreme Court will uphold health care law
By Susan Crabtree - The Washington Times
In his first public remarks on the case since the Supreme Court heard arguments last week on the fate of his sweeping health care overhaul, President Obama on Monday warned the high court not to overturn the law and repeatedly said he is "confident" it won't.
"I continue to be confident that the Supreme Court of the United States will uphold the law," he said during a joint press conference following meetings with Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
Supreme Court upholds strip searches for any offense
By a 5-4 vote, the court ruled against a NJ man
who complained of civil rights violations
By Mark Sherman, Associated Press - PoliceOne.com
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court ruled Monday that jailers may subject people arrested for minor offenses to invasive strip searches, siding with security needs over privacy rights.
By a 5-4 vote, the court ruled against a New Jersey man who complained that strip searches in two county jails violated his civil rights.
Justice Anthony Kennedy said in his majority opinion for the court's conservative justices that when people are going to be put into the general jail population, "courts must defer to the judgment of correctional officials unless the record contains substantial evidence showing their policies are an unnecessary or unjustified response to problems of jail security."
The Public Gets Tee'd Up For [Junk Bond] Slaughter - Again...
By Dave - The Golden Truth
"It's the only place I can find any yield whatsoever with a reasonable risk," said Lee Hevner, an individual investor who said he started buying junk bonds this year for the first time.
Those will be famous last words. That poor sot allowed his ignorant, greedy investment advisor talk him into putting 15% of $500k stash in junk bonds. Hope he can afford to lose most of it.
Once again, courtesy of the Fed's zero interest rate policy (ZIRP) and the Government's catastrophic fiscal policies, the yield-starved individual investor has been flooding the high yield market with money in a desperate search for investment yields that have any shot at keeping up with the true cost of living.
How billionaires destroy democracy
Wealthy Wall Streeters have rigged the economy and the government against the people. Here's how they did it
BY LINDA MCQUAIG AND NEIL BROOKS - Salon.com
There are many words that could be used to describe Barack Obama, but one adjective decidedly doesn't fit: Aggressive. So it was more than passing strange when a prominent member of Wall Street — Stephen Schwarzman, chairman of the private equity giant Blackstone Group — compared actions by President Obama to one of the most notoriously aggressive acts by one of history's most aggressive villains. Speaking to the board of a nonprofit group, Schwarzman fiercely denounced initiatives by the Obama administration: "It's war. It's like when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939."
The 15 Trillion Dollar Party
By Michael Snyder - TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com
If you knew that you could live in luxury for the rest of your life but that by doing so it would absolutely destroy the future for your children, your grandchildren and your great-grandchildren would you do it? Well, that is exactly what we are doing as a nation. Over the past several decades, we have stolen 15 trillion dollars from future generations so that we could enjoy a dramatically inflated level of prosperity. Our 15 trillion dollar party has been a lot of fun, but what we have done to our children and our grandchildren has been beyond criminal. We ran up the greatest mountain of debt in the history of the planet and we are sticking them with the bill. Sadly, both political parties have been responsible for the big spending that has been going on. Both Democrats and Republicans have run up huge budget deficits when in power. But instead of learning the hard lessons of the past, both political parties continue to vote for even more debt. They would rather continue to steal trillions of dollars from future generations than have the party end and have to face the consequences.
Someone You Love: Coming to a Gulag Near You
By Chris Hedges - Truthdig.com
The security and surveillance state does not deal in nuance or ambiguity. Its millions of agents, intelligence gatherers, spies, clandestine operatives, analysts and armed paramilitary units live in a binary world of opposites, of good and evil, black and white, opponent and ally. There is nothing between. You are for us or against us. You are a patriot or an enemy of freedom. You either embrace the crusade to physically eradicate evildoers from the face of the Earth or you are an Islamic terrorist, a collaborator or an unwitting tool of terrorists. And now that we have created this monster it will be difficult, perhaps impossible, to free ourselves from it. Our 16 national intelligence agencies and army of private contractors feed on paranoia, rumor, rampant careerism, demonization of critical free speech and often invented narratives. They justify their existence, and their consuming of vast governmental resources, by turning even the banal and the mundane into a potential threat. And by the time they finish, the nation will be a gulag.
UPS Store offering AARP discount
New Mexico Business Weekly by Jacques Couret,
Senior Online Editor - Atlanta Business Chronicle
The UPS Store, a unit of United Parcel Service Inc., now gives card-carrying AARP members a 15 percent discount.
UPS (NYSE: UPS) announced Monday a partnership with AARP to give the seniors organization's members discounts at the more than 4,300 UPS Store locations. There are 12 UPS Store locations in Albuquerque.
How Stockton, California Went Broke in Plain Sight
[Google title for free article pass]
The new era of local government:
Taxpayers can expect to pay more but get less.
By STEVEN MALANGA - WSJ.com - $$
What does it look like when a city of almost 300,000 flirts with becoming America's largest ever city to go bankrupt? Welcome to Stockton, Calif.
An inland seaport in California's Central Valley, Stockton exemplifies the fiscal hole that many municipalities have dug for their taxpayers. Starting in the mid-1990s, the city began attracting frenzied bargain hunters who drove up home prices nearly threefold. Then the California home market crashed spectacularly in 2007. Foreclosures soared, tax revenues declined, and Stockton discovered that the weight of its fiscal commitments might spell bankruptcy.
Goldman raising money for new home-loan fund
The fund, which will buy home-loan bonds to benefit
from an improving real estate market, will open Sunday.
Bloomberg News - Crain's New York Business
(Bloomberg) - Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which survived the subprime mortgage crisis by making bets on a housing decline, is raising money for a new fund that will buy home-loan bonds to benefit from an improving real estate market.
The U.S. Housing Recovery Fund is expected to finish its first round of capital raising and open April 1, according to a marketing document obtained by Bloomberg News. It will focus on senior-ranked securities without government backing, many of which now carry junk credit grades.
Foreclosure reforms to widen
By Brady Dennis - WashingtonPost.com
State and federal officials who recently completed a $25 billion settlement with five of the nation's largest banks over shoddy foreclosure practices have begun discussing how to apply some of the terms of that deal to a wider array of financial firms.
The landmark agreement finalized in February in part forces the five major banks to overhaul flawed and fraudulent foreclosure practices that had become common in recent years. Those changes include forbidding so-called "robosigning" of documents and providing a single point of contact to homeowners, who in the past often faced foreclosure from the banks even as they were negotiating ways to remain in their homes.
Construction Spending in U.S.
Unexpectedly Declined in February
Timothy R. Homan - WashingtonPost.com
April 2 (Bloomberg) -- Construction spending in the U.S. unexpectedly fell in February, reflecting broad-based declines that indicate the building industry will take time to stabilize.
The 1.1 percent decrease, the biggest in seven months, followed a revised 0.8 percent retreat in January that was larger than previously estimated, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. The median estimate of 45 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News called for a 0.6 percent increase.
To Fix America's Education Bureaucracy, We Need to Destroy It
Successful schools don't have a formula, other than that teachers and principals are free to follow their instincts.
By Philip K. Howard - TheAtlantic.com
America's schools are being crushed under decades of legislative and union mandates. They can never succeed until we cast off the bureaucracy and unleash individual inspiration and willpower.
Schools are human institutions. Their effectiveness depends upon engaging the interest and focus of each student. A good teacher, studies show, can dramatically improve the learning of students. What do great teachers have in common? Nothing, according to studies -- nothing, that is, except a commitment to teaching and a knack for keeping the students engaged (see especially The Moral Life of Schools). Good teachers don't emerge spontaneously, and training and mentoring are indispensable. But ultimately, effective teaching seems to hinge on, more than any other factor, the personality of the teacher. Skilled teachers have a power to engage their students -- with spontaneity, authority, and wit.
Senior citizens continue to bear burden of student loans
Many seniors find burden of student loans
tarnishing their golden years
By Ylan Q. Mui - WashingtonPost.com
The burden of paying for college is wreaking havoc on the finances of an unexpected demographic: senior citizens.
New research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York shows that Americans 60 and older still owe about $36 billion in student loans, providing a rare window into the dynamics of student debt. More than 10 percent of those loans are delinquent. As a result, consumer advocates say, it is not uncommon for Social Security checks to be garnished or for debt collectors to harass borrowers in their 80s over student loans that are decades old.
Pinnacle Airlines files Chapter 11
Atlanta Business Chronicle by Andy Ashby, Staff writer
Pinnacle Airlines Corp. and its subsidiaries have filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after months of cutting costs and renegotiating contracts to avoid it.
Pinnacle, through its subsidiaries Pinnacle Airline Inc. and Colgan Air Inc., is a regional airline servicing main airline partners as Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express.
The Memphis, Tenn.-based airline holding company intends to use the Chapter 11 process to continue implementing a turnaround plan aimed at addressing its operational and financial challenges in the rapidly-evolving regional airline industry, according to a company release. The company also plans on cutting back service through United Airlines and US Airways while getting some financing help from Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines Inc.
The Strategic Petroleum Reserve
Becomes a Political Football (Yet Again)
BY DR. KENT MOORS, Global Energy Strategist, Money Morning
With the prices of both crude oil and gasoline racing higher, it was just a matter of time before the cries began sounding to open up the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR).
The White House is now under renewed pressure to combat rising gas prices by releasing that oil.
The problem is that the SPR was not created to deal with our current crises.
Following the Arab oil embargo in 1973, which resulted in long lines at the pump in the U.S. and alternate fueling days (based on your license plate), Washington made the decision to establish the national reserve.
How the Big Energy Companies Plan
to Turn the United States into a Third-World Petro-State
Will North America become not just the next boom continent for energy bonanzas, but a new energy Third World?
by MIchael T. Klare - AlterNet.org
The "curse" of oil wealth is a well-known phenomenon in Third World petro-states where millions of lives are wasted in poverty and the environment is ravaged, while tiny elites rake in the energy dollars and corruption rules the land. Recently, North America has been repeatedly hailed as the planet's twenty-first-century "new Saudi Arabia" for" tough energy" -- deep-sea oil, Canadian tar sands, and fracked oil and natural gas. But here's a question no one considers: Will the oil curse become as familiar on this continent in the wake of a new American energy rush as it is in Africa and elsewhere? Will North America, that is, become not just the next boom continent for energy bonanzas, but a new energy Third World?
Tea Party conservatism gaining a foothold,
as per liberal opinion...
The Right's Stealthy Coup
By E.J. Dionne, Jr. - Truthdig.com
Right before our eyes, American conservatism is becoming something very different from what it once was. Yet this transformation is happening by stealth because moderates are too afraid to acknowledge what all their senses tell them.
Last week's Supreme Court oral arguments on health care were the most dramatic example of how radical tea partyism has displaced mainstream conservative thinking. It's not just that the law's individual mandate was, until very recently, a conservative idea. Even conservative legal analysts were insisting it was impossible to imagine the court declaring the health care mandate unconstitutional, given its past decisions.
6 Reasons the Koch Brothers Had a Very Bad Week
An FBI investigation, a new documentary, and a court overturned one of their pet politicians' pet laws: here's a look inside the Kochs' worst week in a while.
By Adele M. Stan - AlterNet.org
Were there a way for a few billion clams to wipe a week off the calendar, one imagines that Charles and David Koch, the multibillionaire principals of Koch Industries, would like to see the final week of March 2012 vaporized, at least in the public mind. For the Kochs, it was a week of bad news: a new documentary about their political activity and corporate negligence was making a splash -- on the same day a story broke announcing an FBI investigation of two Wisconsin groups tied to Americans for Prosperity, the political ground organization they founded and fund.
Sheriff Joe faces crossroads in civil rights case
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio faces an April 14 deadline for concluding talks with the U.S. Justice Department to settle a wide range of civil rights allegations
By Jacques Billeaud, Associated Press - PoliceOne.com
PHOENIX — America's self-proclaimed toughest sheriff is fast approaching a crossroads where he must decide either to settle claims that his officers racially profiled Latinos in his trademark immigration patrols — and overhaul his practices — or take his chances at trial.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio faces an April 14 deadline for concluding talks with the U.S. Justice Department to settle a wide range of civil rights allegations, including that the sheriff launched some immigration patrols based on letters from people who complained about people with dark skin congregating in a given area or speaking Spanish but never reporting an actual crime. The sheriff has become nationally known for his tough stance against illegal immigration.
Mainstream Media Power to Indict or Ignore
By Greg Hunter's USAWatchdog.com
About a month ago, renowned Arizona Sherriff Joe Arpaio made an astounding claim in a public press conference, "A six month long investigation conducted by my cold case posse has lead me to believe there is probable cause to believe that President Barack Obama's long-form birth certificate released by the White House on April 27, 2011, is a computer-generated forgery," said Arpaio. The Maricopa County Sherriff claimed President Obama's Hawaiian selective-service card was, also, "most likely a forgery." (Click here for the complete press release from the Maricopa County Arizona Sherriff's office. This includes 6 videos explaining the Obama birth certificate investigation.)
All U.S. Electronics From China Could Be Infected
Well, it's been pretty obviuos for a while now that China's been hacking into some of America's most important businesses and government agencies and stealing reams of data. We've heard countless reports about Pentagon info being stolen orabout critical data on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter being plucked from defense contractors networks — with China being the main suspect.
Well, former U.S. counter-terrorism czar –currently running his own cybersecurity firm — Richard Clarke is coming out and saying that all electronics made in China may well have built-in trapdoors allowing Chinese malware to infect American systems on command. The malware could do everything from take over a device to disabling it to secretly siphoning information off of it.
China Says U.S. Has No Authority
To Impose Unilateral Sanctions On Iran
China has wholly rejected the new sanctions from the United States which take aim at all foreign banks and financial institutions which continue to deal with Iranian crude oil.
"The Chinese side always opposes one country unilaterally imposing sanctions against another according to [its] domestic law. Furthermore it does not accept the unilateral imposition of those sanctions on a third country," China's Foreign Ministry said in a brief statement on Saturday, according to the Associated Press.
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