Weekday NEWS to Comfort the Disturbed and Disturb the Comfortable.
Currencies Wait for the EU Summit
By Mike Meyer - dailyreckoning.com
06/28/12 St. Louis, Missouri – Good day, and welcome to another scorcher here in the Midwest. Chuck isn't feeling well today, so I just got the call to get something out to all of you, which means this will be very short and, hopefully, sweet. As I mentioned, it's going to be a hot one for us today. We're supposed to have Phoenix-type weather in St. Louis, with the mercury rising to 107 degrees. It's supposed to be a dry heat, which does make a big difference, so we'll see if today goes down in the record books.
The dollar has been heating up so far this morning over thoughts the EU summit in Brussels won't accomplish anything other than what Chuck called yesterday a 'plan to have a plan.' The market likes to play both sides of the fence, but so far this morning, they aren't anticipating anything that would have an immediate or significant impact on the debt crisis. So the focus for today looks to remain in Europe. The rise in yield for the Italian 5-year and 10-year bond auction to 6.19% from the previous 6.03% figure didn't help matters, either.
An Ending Made for Gold
BY FRANK HOLMES - FinancialSense.com
Over the past several months, the markets have tested investors' conviction to gold. Since February, the price of the yellow metal has steadily stepped lower, rallying somewhat in May before falling again when Ben Bernanke disappointed by not providing the U.S. with more stimulus. Meanwhile, the dollar gained ground as global investors fled the euro.
In the ongoing eurocrisis, we won't know the details of how Europe will clean up its debtmess for a while, but we're pretty confident the story ends well for gold.
Keiser Report: Gold vs Paper (E306)
In this episode, Max Keiser and co-host, Stacy Herbert, discuss the world looking for people looking for economic salvation in gold, the Eurozone and emerging markets and ask "what kind of stupid people put precious money into messy banks?" In the second half of the show Max talks to former market maker and newsletter writer, Rick Ackerman, about inflation, deflation, the euro and the student loan market.
The Black Hole of Deflation - Part 2
BY JULIAN PHILLIPS - FinancialSense.com
In Part I of this series we looked at the decaying state of confidence and how this is assisting in the deflationary process that is slowly, inexorably, moving forward, with limited action from central bankers and very little action at all from politicians. We looked at Christine Legarde's comments that highlighted the need for value and measures of value to keep the monetary system under control. And then we looked at the loss of money velocity, deflation and the damage it's doing to the solvency of banks and nations.
Since then the process has moved forward with 28 Spanish banks downgraded by Moody's ratings Agency, while the Spanish government has formally asked for financial assistance from the E.U. Cyprus now makes the fifth E.U. member to put its hand out for a bailout. Italy's borrowing cost jumped to new highs too.
European Leaders Play with Fire
BY JOHN BROWNE - FinancialSense.com
The world economy today stands at the doorstep of great change. A gathering crisis looms in Europe, splitting the Continent into two competing blocs. While leaders there face off against one another in a high stakes game of chicken, the rest of the world powerlessly watches the train wreck slowly unfold. Political leaders on both sides of the Atlantic fail to grasp the fragility of the current world order and do not understand the forces they are unleashing. A parallel here can be drawn with the political situation that existed on the eve of the First World War. For the most part European leaders were not bent upon death and destruction. However these largely ordinary men were held captive by national delusions and a complex system of alliances and treaties that had not been thought through to their logical conclusions. This resulted in a situation where a single assassination was enough to plunge the Continent into a bloodbath.
Angela Merkel defies Latin Europe and the IMF on bond rescue German Chancellor Angela Merkel has shot down calls for full mobilisation of the eurozone's bail-out funds to halt the raging bond crisis in Spain and Italy, ignoring unprecedented pleas for action from the International Monetary Fund.
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard - Telegraph.co.uk
"Each country wants to help but if I am going to call on taxpayers in Germany, I must have guarantees that all is under control. Responsibility and control go hand in hand," she said after a crucial summit of the eurozone's Big Four powers in Rome.
Mrs Merkel -- or La Signora No in Italy -- doused hopes of a break-through on proposals by the "Latin Bloc" leaders of Italy, France, and Spain to deploy the funds (EFSF and ESM) to cap the bond yields of "virtuous" countries vulnerable to contagion, or to recapitalize banks directly to take the strain off sovereign states.
Angela Merkel isn't bluffing; like everyone else in Europe,
she's defending national sovereignty You turn if you want to. The lady's not for turning. No, not Mrs Thatcher, but Angela Merkel, the latest big beast of the European political scene to dig her heels in and refuse to go along with the international consensus.
By Jeremy Warner - Telegraph.co.uk
No, no, no, she says, to any solution to the eurozone crisis that looks like debt pooling, as if echoing the words of Britain's former prime minister all those years ago on the perils of monetary union.
The German Chancellor is bluffing, and doesn't really mean it, the markets reply, but if this is indeed only a game of poker, she's certainly got nerves of steel. There will be no joint and several guarantees for euro area debt "as long as I live", she told a private meeting of German MPs this week. If that's bluff, then it's one from which politically she'll struggle to escape.
Angela Merkel dismisses Spain and Italy's pleas for aid Pleas from Spain and Italy for urgent financial aid from the eurozone to bring down borrowing costs were dismissed by Angela Merkel as divisions hardened on the eve of a critical summit.
By Bruno Waterfield - Telegraph.co.uk
Germany's Chancellor angrily rejected desperate pleading by Italy and Spain as a Franco-German rift over eurozone debt sharing threatened to unravel efforts to find a fix for the single currency at a meeting of European leaders on Thursday.
Before flying last night to Paris for emergency talks with Francois Hollande, the French President, Mrs Merkel told German MPs that instead of more cash the eurozone needed to step up debt reduction and economic reforms.
Stop Picking on Bankers, JPMorgan Chief Says
BY JACK EWING - NYTimes.com
DAVOS, Switzerland — Jamie Dimon, chief executive ofJPMorgan Chase, lived up to his reputation as a fierce defender of his profession on Thursday when he told listeners in Davos, including the president of France, that he was fed up with banker bashing.
Mr. Dimon said at the World Economic Forum that he was sick of "this constant refrain — bankers, bankers, bankers."
"We try to do the best we can every day," Mr. Dimon said during a panel discussion.
Later, Mr. Dimon urged Nicolas Sarkozy, the president of France, not to let bank regulation be driven by anger toward bankers, and he warned that bad policy-making would impede growth.
Should J.P. Morgan's Jamie Dimon be fired? Amid reports that J.P. Morgan's London unit trade losses could climb as high as $9 billion, some are arguing it's time to reconsider Dimon's fate at the bank.
By Eleanor Bloxham - Fortune.CNN.com
FORTUNE -- Amid reports from the New York Times that J.P. Morgan's London unit trade losses could climb as high as $9 billion, some are wondering whether it's time to seriously reconsider CEO Jamie Dimon's fate at the bank.
"Dimon has either failed to supervise, failed to tell the truth, or both. Pleading ignorance doesn't help," Tufts University business professor Amar Bhide told me. Bhide believes the board should fire Dimon, saying Dimon's tenure can be characterized by "repeated incidents that exemplify an absence of the duty of care, which impacts the public good."
JPMorgan Trading Loss May Reach $9 Billion
BY JESSICA SILVER-GREENBERG
AND SUSANNE CRAIG - NYTimes.com
Losses on JPMorgan Chase's bungled trade could total as much as $9 billion, far exceeding earlier public estimates, according to people who have been briefed on the situation.
When Jamie Dimon, the bank's chief executive, announced in May that the bank had lost $2 billion in a bet on credit derivatives, he estimated that losses could double within the next few quarters. But the red ink has been mounting in recent weeks, as the bank has been unwinding its positions, according to interviews with current and former traders and executives at the bank who asked not to be named because of investigations into the bank.
Banks face billions of dollars of claims after Barclays settles Damages claims running to billions of dollars against the world's biggest banks have been given fresh "credibility" by Barclays £290m Libor settlement, lawyers said.
By Alistair Osborne - Telegraph.co.uk
The British bank is already named as a defendant in various class actions around the world, where investors are seeking compensation for buying financial instruments based on a Libor benchmark that was allegedly manipulated.
One of the biggest class-action claims has been filed in New York by the Mayor and City Council of Baltimore and the City of New Britain Firefighters and Police Benefit Fund.
The Impotence of the Federal Reserve
By Martin Feldstein - Project-Syndicate.org
CAMBRIDGE – The United States Federal Reserve's recent announcement that it will extend its "Operation Twist" by buying an additional $267 billion of long-term Treasury bonds over the next six months - to reach a total of $667 billion this year - had virtually no impact on either interest rates or equity prices. The market's lack of response was an important indicator that monetary easing is no longer a useful tool for increasing economic activity.
The Tiny Distinction That Saved Obamacare:
Why the Penalty Is a Tax What's in a name? That which we call a health insurance penalty would by any other name raise money, John Roberts concluded. Even if you can't regulate the lack of commerce, you can always tax it.
By DEREK THOMPSON - TheAtlantic.com
In the two years since the Affordable Care Act was passed, the small penalty for those who don't buy health insurance had been one of the least-discussed elements of the law. The famous insurance regulations? They were the administration's darlings. The expensive subsidies for low-income families and Medicaid expansion? Those were the conservatives' and deficit hawks' biggest nightmare. And the individual mandate? That was the keystone of controversy.
But this morning, when the Supreme Court upheld the ACA, it was the often-ignored penalty that played a leading role in Chief Justice John Roberts' opinion. Because the small fee "looks like a tax," he wrote, the individual mandate could stand on the basis of Congress' broad power to tax.
But does that make any sense? How can a penalty also be a tax?
The Most Important Part
of Today's Health Care Ruling You Haven't Heard About
By Jordan Weissmann - TheAtlantic.com
Although it has largely been treated as a footnote in today's coverage of the Supreme Court's health care ruling, the Justices' decision to strike down part of Obamacare's Medicaid expansion might itself be a turning point in constitutional law -- one that could put significant new limits on federal power.
In order make insurance available for more low-income Americans, the Affordable Care Act essentially made states an offer they couldn't refuse. They could either accept more money to expand their Medicaid rolls, or lose their existing federal funding for the program. Congress puts conditions on federal dollars all the time. It made states raise the drinking age to 21, for instance. But in this case, the court ruled that Congress' threat to yank away all of a state's Medicaid funding unless they cooperated was unconstitutionally coercive.
Obamacare upheld by the supreme court,
but not yet by American voters The Affordable Care Act survived supreme court scrutiny, but the president's flagship law faces sceptical voters in an election year
By Ana Marie Cox - Guardian.co.uk
The supreme court-held sword of Damocles over President Obama's flagship healthcare reform law has been lifted, but the administration could still fall on it. The court ruled the individual mandate constitutional, and most provisions of the law therefore stand. But whatever vindication the administration might wish to take from the supreme court's ruling must be tempered by the knowledge that its effort to reform a healthcare system with which almost no one is happy has created a political atmosphere made all the more dangerous by the rhetorical fog surrounding the issue.
Did The Supreme Court Expose A Big 'Obamacare' Tax Lie?
By BRIAN BEUTLER - TalkingPointsMemo.com
The Supreme Court's narrow decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act's insurance mandate as a valid exercise of Congress' taxing power has reignited a spin war over whether Democrats broke their pledge not to raise middle-class taxes, and whether they misled the public by insisting the mandate was not a tax during the contentious health care reform debate.
After all, back in September 2009, President Obama insisted to ABC News, "for us to say that you've got to take a responsibility to get health insurance is absolutely not a tax increase. … I absolutely reject that notion."
Within moments of the ruling Republicans pounced.
Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Obamacare
By Kurt Nimmo - Infowars.com
In a victory for the New Deal bastardization of the Constitution, the Supreme Court has ruled that the government can mandate at gunpoint that Americans buy monopolized health care insurance.
"The Supreme Court upheld the health care law today in a splintered, complex opinion that appears to give President Obama a major victory," reportsUSAToday.
In order to avoid arguments that the law is a misinterpretation of the Commerce Clause, the Court ruled that the requirement is a tax.
Roberts court upholds Obama health law;
GOP preps tax fight
By Sam Baker - TheHill.com
The Supreme Court upheld President Obama's signature healthcare law Thursday in a 5-4 decision that vindicates Obama and helps define Chief Justice John Roberts.
The court said the health law's individual mandate, which requires most taxpayers to either buy insurance or pay a penalty, is a tax and is constitutional. The court also altered the law's Medicaid expansion without striking it down entirely.
The ruling is an enormous victory for President Obama and congressional Democrats, who had long insisted the healthcare law is constitutional.
Roberts & Dems Deliver a Grand Slam for the Right Obamacare Wins, We Lose
by JOHN STAUBER - CounterPunch.org
It was a brilliant move by far Right (but oh so likable) Chief Justice Roberts to side with the Dem-appointed Justices and uphold ObamaCare. After all, this is a massive victory for corporate power, forcing citizens to buy an expensive insurance product that won't serve our needs very well but will profit industry, in lieu of receiving real health care.
Obamacare and its corporate mandate were born on the Right (as in Heritage Foundation) as a way to destroy the political prospects of any single payer system that would cover all Americans with a tax-funded system of guaranteed medical care. This is the way all other industrial societies protect the right to health care, by taking it out of the hands of the giant insurance industry. The right to health care is like the right to not be enslaved – there are no half measures, and the insurance industry is the slave master.
Former GOP Sen. Bob Bennett:
'Health Care Reform Is Obviously Here To Stay'
By ERIC KLEEFELD - TalkingPointsMemo.com
Former Utah Sen. Bob Bennett, a Republican who lost his party's nomination in 2010 — in part due to his past work with Democrats on health care reform — told TPM that he had few complaints about Thursday's Supreme Court ruling.
"I'm delighted to see any kind of rein on the Commerce Clause, because I think the Commerce Clause has been used farther than it should have," Bennett said. "I can't really complain about the upholding of the idea of the individual mandate, because I had an individual mandate in my own bill. The system won't work without it. You don't have a big enough risk pool to pay for everything if you don't have everyone in it. And that's the purpose of the individual mandate, to get everyone in the risk pool, and then the numbers will work.
So how many Americans
could be "mandated" to buy health insurance?
By Joe Garofoli - San Francisco Chronicle
Here's a key stat to remember in the wake of the Supreme Court's health care ruling, which left the individual mandateintact: According to a March study by the Urban Institute, if the health care law "were in effect today, 94 percent of the total population….would not face a requirement to newly purchase insurance or pay a fine."
The study found that of the "181 million Americans under the age of 65 who are subject to the mandate, 86 percent are estimated to have health insurance without reform…. 95 percent of those with some type of insurance coverage (employer, nongroup, public) without reform will have the same type of coverage under the ACA (data not shown)."
healthcare ruling removes some uncertainty: CNBC
(Reuters) - The Supreme Court's decision Thursday to uphold President Barack Obama's signature healthcare overhaul removes some of the cloud of uncertainty that has been keeping businesses from hiring, a top Federal Reserve official said.
"At least there's been a little bit more certainty that's been put out there," said Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher, known for his view that a lack of clarity over future taxes and healthcare is a major reason businesses are holding back on hiring.
But there are still plenty of unknowns, including on the healthcare front, he added.
Health reform upheld: What companies need to know
By Jose Pagliery - CNN.com
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Health care reform has survived the Supreme Court, and that means a flood of new rules and options for American businesses and their employees.
For most small businesses, the court's decision Thursday means a new way for them to shop for less expensive health insurance on state exchanges.
The ruling also means that companies with 50 or more full-time employees must start providing health insurance for all workers by 2014 or face stiff penalties.
15 Reasons Why The Obamacare Decision
Is A Mind Blowing Disaster For America
By Michael Snyder - EndOfTheAmericanDream.com
You can almost always count on the Supreme Court to do the wrong thing. In fact, just about every major decision by the U.S. Supreme Court over the last 40 years has been bad for America. Many were hoping that the Supreme Court would strike down Obamacare, but the truth is that we all should have known better than to expect them to get something right. So now America is headed for a complete and total disaster as Obamacare is fully implemented over the next several years. Obamacare is going to absolutely shred the infrastructure of our medical system, it is going to send health insurance premiums soaring, it is going to dramatically expand the size and the scope of government, it is going to fundamentally alter the relationships between doctors and their patients and it is one of the largest tax increases in U.S. history. Not only that, it is also going to add about a trillion dollars to our national debt over the next decade. So no, the Obamacare decision is not good news. Obamacare was one of the worst pieces of legislation in American history, and now we are stuck with it.
Elderly To Be Euthanized Under Obamacare? UK's socialist healthcare system kills 130,000 patients a year
By Paul Joseph Watson - Infowars.com
If Britain's socialist healthcare system is a benchmark for what we can expect from Obamacare, hundreds of thousands of elderly patients face being euthanized through "assisted death" techniques designed to cut costs.
The idea that "death panels" would be introduced through Obamacare as a means of rationing healthcare was discussed during an Aspen Institute conference in 2010 when Bill Gates argued that money should not be spent on treating the elderly.
During a question and answer session, Gates implied that elderly patients undergoing expensive health care treatments should be killed and the money spent elsewhere.
Boehner: Ruling strengthens GOP's 'resolve'
to repeal healthcare law
By Russell Berman - TheHill.com
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the majority of President Obama's healthcare reform law would "strengthen [the] resolve" of the GOP to repeal it entirely.
Boehner and other House Republican leaders pledged to redouble their efforts to scrap the 2010 law legislatively, but they said the law's fate ultimately rests with the voters in November.
"The Supreme Court spoke today, but they won't have the final word. The American people will have the final word in November," said Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers (R-Wash.), the vice chairman of the GOP conference who was tapped to help lead its response to the ruling.
Why DeMint's Call For States
To Block Health Care Exchanges Won't Work
By ERIC KLEEFELD - TalkingPointsMemo.com
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) called on state governors to refuse to set up health care exchanges in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision to uphold health care reform. But experts said that try as DeMint might to revive nullification, the senator's call — even if answered by GOP governors — won't likely make the impact he's looking for.
The key quote from DeMint's press release:
"This government takeover of health care remains as destructive, unsustainable, and unconstitutional as it was the day it was passed, unread, by a since-fired congressional majority. Now as then, our first step toward real health care reform and economic renewal remains Obamacare's full repeal, down to the last letter and punctuation mark.
Ruling focuses election on Obama's health care tax
By Dave Boyer-The Washington Times
The Supreme Court handed President Obama a major political victory on his signature health-care issue Thursday, but the justices also provided Republicans with a sharper campaign issue by defining the law's individual mandate as a tax.
The ruling allows Mr. Obama to engage in a four-month-long victory lap as he campaigns for reelection. And it validates the president's decision to devote so much time and energy to passing the law in 2009 while the economy was in free fall, a divisive vote that contributed to Democrats losing the House in 2010.
Romney: Supreme Court Ruling on Health Law Wrong
Republican Mitt Romney is promising that he will repeal the federal health care law the Supreme Court just upheld. He called the decision incorrect and said Thursday that it is a 'bad law.' (June 28)
In 255-67 vote, House places Holder in contempt of Congress
By Jordy Yager and Pete Kasperowicz - TheHill.com
The House voted Thursday to place Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for not complying with a congressional subpoena.
Seventeen Democrats bucked party lines and voted with Republicans to pass a criminal contempt resolution in a 255-67 vote. House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) pushed that resolution as part of his 16-month investigation into the botched "Fast and Furious" gun-tracking operation.
United Faiths of America
By GROVER G. NORQUIST - The American Spectator.org
Obama and the secular left are creating an ecumenical right -- again.
Conventional wisdom holds that Governor Mitt Romney's Mormon faith was a boat anchor that reduced his potential support among Republican primary voters in 2008, and could undermine his campaign in the 2012 general election. This concern declined as Romney won solid primary victories and rapidly consolidated Republican support. Recent polls show him running neck and neck with President Obama in the November election.
But Romney's faith could still be a factor—and one that helps him, not hurts him. Romney's membership in a minority religious community with a history of suffering—very real and very recent religious persecution—opens up an opportunity for him to connect with voters as a credible advocate for the religious liberty of all Americans.
America On Fire: Why Is The Number Of Wildfires
In The United States Increasing?
By Michael Snyder - TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com
As America watches large sections of Colorado literally burn to the ground, many are wondering why all of this is happening. There have always been wildfires, but what we are experiencing now seems very unusual. So is the number of wildfires in the United States increasing? As you will see later in this article, the answer is yes. 2011 was a record setting year for wildfires and this wildfire season is off to a very frightening start. Right now the eyes of the nation are focused on the Waldo Canyon Fire in Colorado. It doubled in size overnight and it has consumed more than 300 homes so far. It is threatening the city of Colorado Springs, and at this point more than 35,000 peoplehave been forced to evacuate - including the U.S. Air Force Academy. On Twitter and Facebook residents are describing what they are seeing as "the apocalypse" and as "the end of the world". But this is just the beginning of the wildfire season. We haven't even gotten to July and August yet.
Whatever Happened to the Keystone XL Pipeline?
By Jen Alic - OilPrice.com
Four and a half years of studies and five failed votes in the House later, exactly where are we with the Keystone XL pipeline? Stuck on the US-Canadian border where it is likely to remain until mid-2013 despite the headline-grabbing issuance of one of three permits to begin construction in Texas for the smaller and much less controversial portion of the pipeline.
On 26 June, the US Army Corps of Engineers granted TransCanada Corp one of three permits required in order to begin construction on the $2.3 billion southern section of the Keystone XL pipeline, which would run from Cushing, Oklahoma to the Gulf of Mexico in Texas. This first in the permit series covers construction across the wetlands and waterways of Texas' Galveston district. TransCanada still needs to more permits from Tulsa, Oklahoma and Forth Worth, Texas, to complete this southern Gulf portion of the pipeline extension. Tulsa is set to rule on the second permit in a month and a half.
IBM freezes salaries of executives, many workers Only employees with high-demand skills will get raises; may be part of aggressive plan to meet goals of 2015 roadmap
By Patrick Thibodeau - Computerworld.com
Computerworld - IBM this year won't be awarding pay raises to its executives or to many of its workers in its Global Technology Services unit.
The company said it is only giving pay raises to workers with high-demand skills that the company needs.
IBM typically awards raises during the mid-year period.
"There are targeted skill groups of employees that are eligible for salary increases in 2012," said Trink Guarino, an IBM spokeswoman. "No executives will be eligible for salary increases."
Down Goes RIM:
BlackBerry 10 Delayed Until 2013, 5K Jobs Cut
By Alexandra Chang - Wired.com
It's all losses and delays for Research In Motion (RIM), the struggling mobile company best known for its once-popular BlackBerry devices. RIM lost $518 million in the last three months and has announced plans to cut 5,000 jobs and delay its BlackBerry 10 platform until 2013, according to the company's first-quarter earnings report released Thursday.
RIM announced BlackBerry 10 in May, indicating that the upcoming platform would be available by the end of this year. But in its Q1 earnings report, the company backpedaled on its original promises.
The company attributes the setback to the time it takes to implement new features, stating that "the integration of these features and the associated large volume of code into the platform has proven to be more time consuming than anticipated."
Barack Obama: Socialist or Nouveau Fascist? Which "-ism" is America under his rule?
By HOWARD RICH - The American Spectator.org
"Barack Obama is a socialist."
Heard that one before? Of course you have. In fact if polling is to be believed, it's more likely than not that you have accepted this premise at some point in the not too distant past.
Two summers ago a poll conducted by Democratic strategists James Carville and Stan Greenberg found that 55 percent of registered voters nationwide believed the term socialist accurately applied to Obama. In fact 33 percent of respondents -- a third of all registered voters in the nation -- believed the term applied to Obama "very well."
Americans Are Being Prepared For Full Spectrum Tyranny
By Brandon Smith - Alt-Market.com
Totalitarian governments, like persistent forms of cancer, have latched onto the long history of man, falling and then reemerging from the deep recesses of our cultural biology to wreak havoc upon one unlucky generation to the next. The assumption by most is that these unfortunate empires are the product of bureaucracies gone awry; overtaken by the chaotic maddening hunger for wealth and power, and usually manipulated by the singular ambitions of a mesmerizing dictator. For those of us in the Liberty Movement who are actually educated on the less acknowledged details of history, oligarchy and globalized centralism is much less random than this, and a far more deliberate and devious process than the general unaware public is willing consider.
Unfortunately, the final truth is very complex, even for us…
Obama Declares Emergency over Russian Enriched Uranium
Infowars.com - June 26, 2012
On Monday, Obama sent a letter to the Speaker of the House declaring a national emergency "to deal with the threat posed to the United States by the risk of nuclear proliferation created by the accumulation in the Russian Federation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material," according to a post on the White House website.
Obama cites Executive Order 13159 of June 21, 2000, in the letter. The Clinton era EO declares "that the risk of nuclear proliferation created by the accumulation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material in the territory of the Russian Federation constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States, and hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat."
Obama's Executive Order 13159 Executive Order--Russian Highly Enriched Uranium
BLOCKING PROPERTY OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION RELATING TO THE DISPOSITION OF HIGHLY ENRICHED URANIUM EXTRACTED FROM NUCLEAR WEAPONS
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) (NEA), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code,
I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, in view of the policies underlying Executive Order 12938 of November 14, 1994, and Executive Order 13085 of May 26, 1998, and the restrictions put in place pursuant to Executive Order 13159 of June 21, 2000, find that the risk of nuclear proliferation created by the accumulation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material in the territory of the Russian Federation continues to constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States, and hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat. I hereby order:
Russia Preps Mach 7 Missiles — With India's Help
By Robert Beckhusen - Wired.com
Russia and India are already testing a new supersonic cruise missile, which is pretty cool, we guess. But going Mach 2 or thereabouts isn't all that fast these days. Everything has to go faster. That's why the two countries are also developing a hypersonic missile capable of traveling more than five times the speed of sound. Problem is even building the engines, let alone missiles, is extremely hard to do.
If it works, the missile — called the BrahMos 2 — is expected to travel up to Mach 7 from sea-, land- and air-launched platforms. And it's supposed to be ready for flight tests in 2017, which is overly optimistic, at best. "I think we will need about 5 years to develop the first fully functional prototype," Sivathanu Pillai, CEO of India-based BraHmos Aerospace said in Moscow on Wednesday. Pillai also suggested the missile already exists, and that BrahMos has conducted "lab tests [of the missile] at the speed of 6.5 Mach."
Aspen Ideas 2012: Revolution and Introspection
By Steve Clemons - TheAtlantic.com
Chrystia Freeland, the sassy smart, globe-trotting provocateur and editor of ThomsonReuters Digital, helped open the 2012 Aspen Ideas Festival yesterday evening by pushing back against Walter Isaacson's characterization of the American idea.
Isaacson spoke of America being a hotbed of ideas and values that rub and push against each other, ultimately producing a balance and harmony among divergent interests. Freeland pushed back, saying "that's Canada -- not America."
"America," Freeland argued, "is the place of revolutions."
Freeland expanded on this theme in the two minutes that she was allowed to speak at the Aspen Ideas opener to offer her "big idea" that we are now in the era of "leaderless revolutions."
Tipping Point Democracy
March 29th, 2012 a group of plaintiffs led by author/journalist Chris Hedges brought a lawsuit against Barack Obama and the US government for section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, which gives the US military the right to detain American citizens indefinitely without charge or trial.
Japanese reactor building has slight tilt
New York Times - SFGate.com
Tokyo -- A heavily damaged reactor building at the tsunami-stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant has a slight tilt, but the tilt does not pose a risk to the integrity of the building, according to the plant's operator.
The Tokyo Electric Power Co., or Tepco, said in a report Monday to Japanese nuclear regulators that at least two of the walls of the No. 4 reactor building are bulging outward at various points and that the building is tilting. The biggest bulge measured about 1.8 inches about a third of the way up the building, the report said.
Was Turkey Jet Shootdown a Staged Provocation? Manufactured stunts to create pretext for war
one of the oldest tricks in the book
By Paul Joseph Watson - Infowars.com
Syria's downing of a Turkish F-4 Phantom jet last week, an event that has threatened to escalate the threat of NATO military action against President Bashar Al-Assad's regime, mirrors previous instances where false flag provocations have been used or considered as a tool with which to create a justification for war.
Despite initially playing down the incident, Turkey today deployed anti-aircraft guns at the border with Syria in response to the shoot down and has promised to talk with NATO about potential repercussions.
British Commandos Operating In Syria,
Assad Compound Under Siege Reports suggest Western military intervention in full swing
By Steve Watson - Infowars.com
French, British and Turkish military sources have suggested that elite British soldiers have entered Northern Syria and are operating ten kilometers inside the country in what is thought to be the first offensive western intervention against the Assad regime.
"Our military sources estimate that the British military drive into Syria, if confirmed, is designed to establish the first safe zone along the Syrian-Turkish border, to be followed by more Western military incursions to establish additional zones of safe asylum in other parts of Syria." reports the Israeli intelligence website Debkafile.
'US should be excluded from talks over Syria just like Iran'
An international conference of countries which have influence on events in Syria is scheduled for this Saturday in Geneva. It aims to try to find a solution to the crisis. Iran hasn't been invited, despite earlier statements from the UN's Syria envoy Kofi Annan that it should be part of the peace process. RT talks to Sara Marusek, researcher from Syracuse University in Beirut.
Syria will receive attack helicopters from Russia,
Kremlin confirms Senior official says delivery of three repaired aircraft will take place after abortive attempt to transport them last month
By Miriam Elder in Moscow - Guardian.co.uk
Russia will follow through with plans to deliver attack helicopters to Syriabecause it considers the country its friend, a senior official has said.
"Syria is our friend, and we fulfil all our obligations to our friends," Alexander Fomin, head of the federal service for military-technical co-operation, told RIA-Novosti. "According to a 2008 contract, we repaired three Mi-25s and are ready to deliver them on time."
Russia has come under fire for refusing to halt its co-operation with the regime of Bashar al-Assad, one of its last remaining allies in the Middle East.