Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Specter of Inflation Haunts Europe

Der Spiegel- If Europe's single currency is really to be saved, fundamental reforms have to follow the emergency bailout by euro-zone members. The biggest danger comes, however, from the European Central Bank, which has given up its role as the protector of price stability. The risk of inflation is increasing. more

Fears Intensify that Euro Crisis Could Snowball

CNBC- After a brief respite following the announcement last week of a nearly $1 trillion bailout plan for Europe, fear in the financial markets is building again, this time over worries that the Continent’s biggest banks face strains that will hobble European economies. more

US death toll in Afghanistan tops 1,000

WSWS-The massive suicide bombing that ripped through a NATO convoy in Kabul Tuesday claimed the lives of five more US soldiers, a Canadian officer and a dozen Afghan civilians. more

Britain’s New Regime: The Oligarchy’s Coup Moves Into Action

Global Research- The top story in the Financial Times (17 May) headlines with ‘Osborne braced for cuts’.

Following the British national elections on 6 May, the new British chancellor, George Osborne, is setting out an array of “painful” public spending cuts, reports the FT. more

Married councillor claims £500 travel expenses a month... after moving in with mistress 160 miles away

Daily Mail- A married councillor who moved 160 miles to set up home with his mistress is claiming £500 a month in expenses to travel back for meetings, it emerged today. more

Investors panic sell shares ahead of possible capital gains tax rise

Telegraph- Investors are panic selling their investments in shares and property ahead of an expected rise in capital gains tax, according to financial experts. more

Suppressing the Cognitive Dissonance of a Bogus Recovery

Of Two Minds- A massive outbreak of economic cognitive dissonance is being suppressed with wave after wave of manufactured "good news." Every visibly negative bit of data is run through a media and Central State assembly line to refashion it as "good news" and "evidence" that the "nascent recovery is taking hold." Whatever cannot be rejiggered is simply buried or suppressed. more

Leaked Doc Proves Spain’s ‘Green’ Policies — the Basis for Obama’s — an Economic Disaster

Pajamas Media- Pajamas Media has received a leaked internal assessment produced by Spain’s Zapatero administration. The assessment confirms the key charges previously made by non-governmental Spanish experts in a damning report exposing the catastrophic economic failure of Spain’s “green economy” initiatives. more

Britons 'spend more web time reading news than looking at pornography'

TELEGRAPH- Britons now spend more of their internet time visiting news websites than looking at pornography, according to a new study. more

Clegg: £7bn worth of 'outrageous’ databases will be scrapped

Computer World- Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg today confirmed that over £7 billion worth of government databases will be scrapped, in an attempt to reverse what he called an encroachment on civil liberties. more

Fiscal Crisis and Imperial Collapse

Business Insider- Harvard and Oxford historian Niall Ferguson has unleashed his latest lesson on the history of sovereign debt crises, and it is a thorough and complete explanation of what the world is going through now, and what it can expect in the near future.

This isn't just about the "PIIGS" states, it is about the United States and United Kingdom, and their very real crisis in public finances. It is about what these states are going to have to sacrifice to maintain stability, both fiscal and political. more

Pensions: '£1.2 trillion gap between expectations and reality'

Telegraph- People saving for their pension have wildly unrealistic expectations about the income they will receive, according to a survey.

The company estimated the total shortfall in pension savings at £1.2 trillion or £1,200 billion – about 80pc of the value of Britain's annual economic output or about £50,000 per person of working age. The gap between savers' expectations and reality has increased by 50pc since the same survey was carried out in 2004. more

All Hell Breaking Loose In Thailand, Stock Exchange On Fire

Business Insider- All hell is breaking loose in Thailand now. The army moved to clear protesters out of their main Ratchprasong encampment this morning, moving slowly inwards towards the main protest stage while encountering sporadic resistance in the outer area of the protest site. There were some limited casualties, including foreign journalists, though we'll wait for official confirmation of the exact counts. more

It is unfair to punish long-term investors

When, in 2008, Gordon Brown introduced a flat rate of capital gains tax at 18 per cent, he also simplified the system. This involved removing a complex labyrinth of allowances and reliefs, which treated different types of assets in different ways and took account of length of time in ownership and the effects of inflation.

From a government that had more than doubled the size of the tax code, it was an unusual and welcome step. George Osborne had quite rightly campaigned in opposition for simpler, flatter, fairer taxes. This marked a victory for his approach.


Author Daniel Estulin to Shed Light on Bilderbergs with Historic Presentation at European Parliament

Prweb- International best-selling author Daniel Estulin will make an unprecedented speech before the European Parliament on June 1st, 2010 at its headquarters in Brussels. more

Bank of England calls for stronger medicine to cut deficit

Times- The Bank of England piled more pressure on the Government over its emergency budget today, saying that a more “demanding” plan to cut the deficit would be needed to prevent interest rates rising. more

MPs expenses: Re-elected Labour MP Eric Illsley charged over his expenses claims

Telegraph- A Labour MP who was only returned to the Commons in the general election earlier this month is to face a criminal prosecution over his Parliamentary expenses. more

After thoughtcrime, now we have tweetcrime

Information Liberation- The conviction of a Twitter user for posting a joke about a bomb shows how insanely paranoid officialdom has become. more

Only morons, cheats and liars still believe in Man-Made Global Warming

Telegraph- Well of course I would write a headline like that having just spent the last three days in Chicago at the Heartland Institute’s 4th International Conference on Climate Change. This is the event the cackling, cloak-wearing, befanged AGW-denying community attends every year to glorify in their own evil. And naturally, in the wake of Climategate, a mood of uproarious triumphalism has prevailed as distinguished skeptical scientists, economists, and policymakers from around the world – Pat Michaels, Richard Lindzen, Ian Plimer, Bob Carter, Fred Singer.. you name them, they’re here – have gathered to dance on the smouldering ashes of the mythical beast ManBearPig. more

Inflation Destroys Savings

Mises- Everything that is done by a government against the purchasing power of the monetary unit is, under present conditions, done against the middle classes and the working classes of the population. Only these people don't know it. And this is the tragedy. The tragedy is that the unions and all these people are supporting a policy that makes all their savings valueless. And this is the great danger of the whole situation. more

Red Shirts surrender as Thai army storms camp

This is London- Thai soldiers stormed the Red Shirt camp in Bangkok today, breaking through the bamboo and tire barricades and forcing the protest leaders to surrender. At least five people have been killed, one of whom was a journalist who was shot in the chest. Two other foreign journalists were wounded.

The anti-government protest leaders surrendered and said they wanted to prevent more deaths. More....

Ed Balls to throw hat in the ring for Labour leadership

London Evening Standard- Two more candidates for the Labour leadership will today throw their hats into the ring, bringing the number of contenders to replace Gordon Brown up to four.

Former children's secretary Ed Balls - long regarded as Mr Brown's closest lieutenant in the Cabinet - is expected formally to declare his candidacy today with a visit to a Midlands seat narrowly held by Labour in last week's election.

And left-winger John McDonnell will launch his campaign at the annual conference of the Public and Commercial Services Union in Brighton. More.....

Union challenges British Airways strike ruling

This is London- The union representing British Airways cabin crew has launched a challenge against an injunction which prevented their strike action going ahead.

Three judges in the Court of Appeal in London, including the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Judge, are being urged to overturn a ruling on Monday by Mr Justice McCombe in the High Court, whose decision to grant an injunction halted action by thousands of members of Unite in a bitter row over jobs, pay and staffing levels.

The granting of the order to BA gave a reprieve for passengers who had faced weeks of travel chaos, but the decision drew furious criticism from union leaders who described it as an "absolute disgrace". More....

Airlines recover with new measures to tackle ash cloud flight disruption

Airlines ran near-normal services on Tuesday after new measures to tackle flight disruption caused by the ash cloud were introduced.

And the Met Office forecast more good news predicting south-westerly winds will blow the Icelandic volcanic ash away from the British Isles.

But it was forced to defend its forecast that had led to flight restrictions on Monday at a number of airports, including Heathrow and Gatwick.

Virgin Atlantic boss Sir Richard Branson said the restrictions were "unforgivable" and authorities dealing with the crisis had made "crass, stupid decisions". More...

The Greek People are the Victims of a Carefully Engineered Financial Extortion Racket

Global Research- What is happening in Greece concerns all of us. The people are paying for a crisis and a debt that are not their own. Today it is the Greeks, tomorrow it will be others, for the same causes will produce the same effects if we allow it. more

Nearly 70pc of Britons forced to work beyond retirement age

Telegraph- Nearly 70 per cent of Britons say they have no choice but to work beyond their retirement age, according to figures published today. more

The Other End: Drones of Democracy

Pacific Free Press- “People who have seen an air strike live on a monitor described it as both awe-inspiring and horrifying. ‘You could see these little figures scurrying, and the explosion going off, and when the smoke cleared there was just rubble and charred stuff,’ a former C.I.A. officer who was based in Afghanistan after September 11th says of one attack.”

“Human beings running for cover are such a common sight,” Jane Mayer continues, “that they have inspired a slang term: ‘squirters.’”

Just rubble and charred stuff… more

London Wants To Offer Full WiFi Coverage... But How Will That Work With The Digital Economy Act?

Tech Dirt- Rik was the first of a few of you to send in the news that the mayor of London, Boris Johnson, is claiming that London will be fully covered by WiFi in time for the 2012 Olympic games. Of course, considering that the UK Parliament just passed the Digital Economy Act, which calls for carefully limiting access to the internet for people accused (not convicted) of infringement online, it makes you wonder how that's going to work. Even if Ofcom has said that the DEA rules won't initially apply to wireless providers, it does seem a bit odd to have the government offering a service like this. Once again, we're seeing how the government has these two competing issues that don't play well together: getting more broadband availability, while looking to help out the entertainment industry by kicking people off the internet at the same time. Who will be the first Olympic athlete kicked offline for downloading some music during the games? more

Man who predicted credit crunch warns on 'vicious' debt crisis

City Wire- Black swan author Nassim Taleb says the world debt problem is worse now than at the height of the credit crunch and investors should ditch equities and US Treasuries and back hard assets.

In an interview with Bloomberg the New York University professor who made his name predicting the credit crunch, says that governments have failed to learn the lessons of the banking crisis, allowing the debt problem to morph into a new and more ‘vicious’ form. more

How far will gold Run?

Oil Price- The good news is that you no longer have to be crazy to buy gold. Until recently, certifiable believers chasing the barbaric relic were driven by a host of urban legends and conspiracy theories, such as the imminent bankruptcy of the US Treasury, Fort Knox holding only titanium bars that had been painted gold, Weimar style hyperinflation that is just around the corner, or the gold ETF (GLD) owning only paper, and not physical gold.

No more. The long term structural demand for the yellow metal is now so well known, that I can read about it in the tabloids while waiting in line at Safeway. more


Express- Senior backbencher Frank Field, who is in talks with the Prime Minister about taking up a welfare advisory role, said unemployment was spreading because many new jobs were snapped up by migrants.

And he feared the open-door border policy operated by Labour would mean condemning more Britons to welfare dependency and poverty. more


Express- LABOUR’S unchecked open-door immigration policy has left a legacy of classroom chaos with thousands of pupils unable to utter a single word of English. more

Nick Clegg: tell us the laws that you want scrapped

Telegraph- The most radical redistribution of power from the state to the people for 200 years is to be made by the new coalition Government, Nick Clegg is to claim. more

Governments That Practice Austerity Will See Their Economies Crushed, And Budget Deficits Soar

Business Insider- Nomura's Richard Koo is clearly one of the most important voices on this next stage of the economic cycle, as deeply indebted governments try to figure out what comes next.

To those that think austerity is the answer, he has an ominous warning: If your private sector is still deleveraging, your economy will crash and your deficit will grow. That latter is the key one, as it's the experience in Japan (and Ireland, and probably Greece, Spain, Portugal, and the UK next). more

Lloyd's of London warns of 'perfect storm' threat to insurance market

Guardian- Gulf oil spill has made it a tough year for the insurance market, which is only one major disaster away from slipping into the red, head of Lloyd's warns. more


Express- HOME Owners face the perfect storm of rising ­mortgage rates and climbing shop prices after official ­figures revealed a double blow for inflation. more

CFR Meeting: Zbigniew Brzezinski Fears The Global Awakening

Prison Planet- Zbigniew Brzezinski giving the CFR branch in Montreal a presentation discussing world government and his fears of the mass global awakening that has taken place. Video

IMF dictates shock program to Romania

WSWS- Coming out of talks with an International Monetary Front delegation last week, Romanian Prime Minister Emil Boc unveiled an austerity package that is the precondition for the country receiving the next outlay of a 20 billion euro loan package. Even though cuts were expected, the ferocity of the planned attack sent ripples of shock and anger through the population. more

US military’s private spy and murder ring continues to operate in Afghanistan, Pakistan

WSWS- The New York Times reported May 15 that the US military was continuing “to rely on a secret network” of spies and paramilitary assassins in Afghanistan and Pakistan, two months after the newspaper first brought the unit to public attention. more

U.K. Journalist and ClimateGate Vanguard: Global Warming Debate as 'Important' as Winning World Wars

News Busters-"[I] think that evil people like me, people who are not afraid of taking the argument ad hominem occasionally and being a bit sort of naughty - I think we have a part to play in this war," Delingpole said. "And I use that word ‘war' quite deliberately because I think what we are fighting now is a war as important in its way as the wars of violence that our fathers and our grandfather fought in the first World War, the second World War, because ultimately what we're fighting for is exactly the same thing. What we are fighting for is liberty." Delingpole. more

Peak Oil And Peak Debt

Market Oracle- The biggest deficit is facing up to oil dependence and doing something about it - rather than making theatrical claims of climate change apocalypse as a smokescreen for selling energy austerity and justifying debt-financed and large government subsidies to high price green energy vanity projects. Changes to national energy policies and programmes through the last 35 years that could have been made, but were dumped the second oil prices fell back below the panic level, will be needed soon, rather than throwing borrowed and printed money at fantasy problems with fantasy solutions. more

‘Enough Money’

Jewish World Review- The key word in this statement, made by President Barack Obama recently, is "you." There is nothing wrong with my deciding how much money is enough for me or your deciding how much money is enough for you, but when politicians think that they should be deciding how much money is enough for other people, that is starting down a very slippery slope.

Politicians with the power to determine each citizen's income are no longer public servants. They are public masters. more

Inflation: mercury rising

Guardian- For the second time in two days, a missive to the Treasury has made the news. But while Liam Byrne's jokelet to his successor might well be the gift to the Tories that keeps on giving, yesterday's letter from Mervyn King to George Osborne contained nothing but bad news. more

MEP expenses up £350 a WEEK: George Osborne brands soaring EU budget 'unacceptable'

Daily Mail- Chancellor George Osborne last night branded plans for a 6 per cent increase in the EU's budget as 'unacceptable' - as MEPs voted themselves an extra £1,300 a month in expenses.
Mr Osborne used his first official visit to Brussels to lay down a marker about the European Commission's extraordinary bid for the rise that would cost Britain an extra £600million a year. more

George Osborne wins EU hedge fund concession

Telegraph- George Osborne claimed a small victory in his first engagement with Brussels as Europe’s finance ministers agreed to consider Britain’s concerns over their controversial hedge fund directive. more

Market chaos warning after German ban on shorting

Telegraph- Traders are predicting chaos on the world's second-largest government bond market after the German authorities on Tuesday announced a ban on all naked short-selling in European public debt, as well as shares in the country's 10 largest financial institutions. more

UK: Islamic Cleric Says “There Will Be Blood on the Streets” When Hundreds of Muslims From Britain Attend Burqa Ban Protest in Belgium…

Weasel Zippers- Anjem Choudary also issued a veiled threat (no pun intended) of violence against a Muslim female politician if she visits Muslim communities…

11 Signs That The U.S. Government Has Become An Overgrown Monstrosity That Almost Every American Is Dependent Upon For Economic Survival

Economic Collapse- Today, the number of Americans who are able to financially survive without any reliance on the U.S. government whatsoever is declining at a staggering rate. Whether it is through direct handouts, entitlement programs, student loans, government bailouts, government contracts or direct employment, the truth is that now a solid majority of the American people are at least partially dependent on the federal government for their economic survival. more

Sell Everything, You Won't Recognize America By The End Of The Year

Business Insider- Do your friends a favor. Tell them to "batten down the hatches" because there's a HARD RAIN coming. Tell them to get out of debt and sell anything they can sell (and don't need) in order to get liquid. Tell them that Richard Russell says that by the end of this year they won't recognize the country. They'll retort, "How the dickens does Russell know -- who told him?" Tell them the stock market told him. more

We Will Have Hyperinflation, Economic and Human Misery as Well as Social Unrest.

Matterhorn Asset Management- Yes this is it! We have crossed the Rubicon and events in the world economy are now likely to unfold in a totally uncontrollable fashion. Clueless governments still don’t understand that it is their ruinous actions that have created a credit infested and bankrupt world. They will continue to prescribe the same remedy that caused the problem in the first place, namely more credit and more printed money. The consequences are clear; we will have hyperinflation, economic and human misery as well as social unrest. more

Be Prepared for a Lot More Eco-Disasters: We're Entering the Age of 'Tough Oil'

Alternet- Yes, the oil spewing up from the floor of the Gulf of Mexico in staggering quantities could prove one of the great ecological disasters of human history. Think of it, though, as just the prelude to the Age of Tough Oil, a time of ever increasing reliance on problematic, hard-to-reach energy sources. Make no mistake: we’re entering the danger zone. And brace yourself, the fate of the planet could be at stake. more

Most idiotic global warming headline ever

WAWT- Over 4.5 billion people could die from Global Warming related causes by 2012, as planet Earth accelarates [sic] into a greed-driven horrific catastrophe. more

UK Inflation Hits New High of CPI 3.7%, RPI 5.3%, Mervyn King Writes Another Excuses Letter

Market Oracle- UK Inflation has yet again hit a new high of CPI 3.7% up from last months inflation peak of 3.4%, with RPI rocketing even higher to an eye watering 5.3%, a level not seen since 1991. The academic economists were again taken by surprise. The Bank of England's failure in its primary duty of targeting inflation has prompted the Governor Mervyn King to write another letter to this time the new Chancellor George Osbourne that will again state for the fifth time this year that the rise in inflation above 3% was temporary and not to worry, it should come down, eventually (fingers crossed). more

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