Monday, February 27, 2006

From Cash to Yachts, Convicted Congressman Set Bribery Rates

From ABC News:

Feb. 27, 2006 — Prosecutors call it a corruption case with no parallel in the long history of the U.S. Congress. And it keeps getting worse. Convicted Rep. Randall "Duke" Cunningham actually priced the illegal services he provided.

Prices came in the form of a "bribe menu" that detailed how much it would cost contractors to essentially order multimillion-dollar government contracts, according to documents submitted by federal prosecutors for Cunningham's sentencing hearing this Friday...

...The sentencing memorandum includes the California Republican's "bribery menu" on one of his congressional note cards, "starkly framed" under the seal of the United States Congress.

The card shows an escalating scale for bribes, starting at $140,000 and a luxury yacht for a $16 million Defense Department contract. Each additional $1 million in contract value required a $50,000 bribe.

The rate dropped to $25,000 per additional million once the contract went above $20 million.

Keep in mind that Randy "Duke" Cunningham is just one of the ones that got caught. As near as I can tell there are 400+ more just like him but perhaps a tad more sophisticated. When are the American people going to tire of watching their hard-earned tax dollars get coverted into yachts, million dollar homes, and Rolls-Royces for crooked politicians ?? - Etienne

Saturday, February 25, 2006

The Sex Pistols Decline their Invitation to join the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame!

Gold (and Silver!) is going to the MOON!!

The Money Chart is an on-going project of Jason Hommel who publishes The Silver Stock Report. The call-outs and arrows of emphasis are mine - Etienne

Etienne's PARTIAL list of bad things happening to the US Dollar over the next couple of months:

1. US Federal Reserve is about to quit publishing the M3 in March (Would you invest in a company that wasn't planning on telling the shareholders how many shares they were going to issue???)

2. The US has reached its Congressionally mandated debt ceiling and can not legally borrow.

3. The Syrian Government just dumped the dollar.

4. Iran is opening an oil bourse that will sell oil in Euro lessening the demand for dollars globally.

5. We will probably go to war with Iran (See # 4 above no matter what the MSMedia says)

6. The Norwegians are talking about starting another bourse that would trade in Euro as well

7. The housing bubble will probably continue to deflate if not outright BURST.

8. GM will probably declare bankruptcy and default on 280 BILLION+ in corporate debt, pension obligations, salaries, etc.

9. Central Banks will continue to diversify into Gold and out of the depreciating paper dollar.

10. Etienne will continue to explain to Americans that there is nothing unpatriotic about protecting your family and the money that you have saved and earned by moving it into gold and silver which remain undefeated when pitted against crappy-ass depreciating fiat paper money in all of recorded human history.

You could bet against Gold but with the US Government's $8.2 TRILLION in Public Debt and $50 - 75 TRILLION in unfunded liabilities... I don't think it would be wise... - Etienne

They Forgot: Torture, Conventional Aerial Bombardment, Nuclear Aerial Bombardment, Fake Terrorist Attack(s), Drunken Firearm Accidents, etc. etc. etc.

Friday, February 24, 2006

MUST SEE VIDEO!! - Loose Change, 2nd Edition

It is reflective of the sad state of journalism in the United States that one of the finest pieces of investigative journalism questioning the MainStreamMedia's now obviously absurd "official story"on 9-11 has been produced by a 22 year old filmmaker that didn't even go to Columbia University's School of Journalism. Loose Change, 2nd Edition is that film and Dylan Avery is the 22 year old filmmaker that has applied an intellectual and directorial curb stomping to Michael Moore on the FULL story behind 9-11.

Watch Loose Change 2nd Edition for FREE Here:

After you have watched Loose Change, 2nd Edition (and then purchased a copy for your friends Here) then compare their masterful job of investigative journalism and insightful analysis to the crap churned out by pseudo-reporters like the Village Voice's Jarrett Murphy who recently did a smear job on the 9-11 truth movement (Found Here). In the article Mr. Murphy attempts to paint the 9-11 truth movement as the lunatic fringe and knock down some of the straw man arguments held by a minority of the movement while minimizing the strongest evidence such as WTC 7 falling perfectly and symmetrically into its own footprint while defying the laws of physics by falling at free-fall speed with no conservation of momentum with exploding demolition "squibs" plainly visible in video from the event. The attack is fairly pathetic since almost 50% of New Yorkers believe the US government had foreknowledge of the 911 attacks and the eminent scholars questioning the official version is growing rapidly and now includes such notables as:

Robert M. Bowman directed Star Wars program under presidents Ford and Carter

James H. Fetzer Distinguished McKnight University Professor, University of Minnesota Duluth

Wayne Madson

Dr. John McMurtry, Ph.D.

Morgan Reynolds,

Dr. David Ray Griffin Professor and Theologian

Dr. Stephen Jones, Professor of Physics, BYU

An article by Paul Joseph Wilson deconstructing Jarrett Murphy's ignorant (if not purposefully deceitful??) scribblings can be found: Here.

Purchase Loose Change, 2nd Edition Here:

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Confessions of an Economic Hitman - A MUST LISTEN INTERVIEW

John Perkins, Economic Hit Man

Hear Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! interview John Perkins, Author of Confessions of an Economic Hitman Here (with a transcript as well) or by clicking below:

Here are some Excerpts from the Interview:

AMY GOODMAN: We turn to someone on the inside who decided to speak out, and he is John Perkins, has written the book, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. He came into our studios to talk about his former work, going into various countries to try to strong-arm leaders into creating policy favorable to the U.S. government and corporations, what he called the “corporatocracy.” John Perkins says he was an economic hit man. I began by asking him to explain this term.

JOHN PERKINS: We economic hit men, during the last 30 or 40 years, have really created the world's first truly global empire, and we've done this primarily through economics, and the military only coming in as a last resort. Therefore, it's been done pretty much secretly. Most of the people in the United States have no idea that we've created this empire and, in fact, throughout the world it's been done very quietly, unlike old empires, where the army marched in; it was obvious. So I think the significance of the things you discussed, the fact that over 80% of the population of South America recently voted in an anti-U.S. president and what's going on at the World Trade Organization, and also, in fact, with the transit strike here in New York, is that people are beginning to understand that the middle class and the lower classes around the world are being terribly, terribly exploited by what I call the corporatocracy, which really runs this empire.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, before we move further, your experience with it? Explain the vantage point you come from. What does it mean to be an economic hit man?

JOHN PERKINS: Well, what we've done -- we use many techniques, but probably the most common is that we'll go to a country that has resources that our corporations covet, like oil, and we'll arrange a huge loan to that country from an organization like the World Bank or one of its sisters, but almost all of the money goes to the U.S. corporations, not to the country itself, corporations like Bechtel and Halliburton, General Motors, General Electric, these types of organizations, and they build huge infrastructure projects in that country: power plants, highways, ports, industrial parks, things that serve the very rich and seldom even reach the poor. In fact, the poor suffer, because the loans have to be repaid, and they're huge loans, and the repayment of them means that the poor won't get education, health, and other social services, and the country is left holding a huge debt, by intention. We go back, we economic hit men, to this country and say, “Look, you owe us a lot of money. You can't repay your debts, so give us a pound of flesh. Sell our oil companies your oil real cheap or vote with us at the next U.N. vote or send troops in support of ours to some place in the world such as Iraq.” And in that way, we've managed to build a world empire with very few people actually knowing that we've done this.

AMY GOODMAN: And you worked for?

JOHN PERKINS: I was recruited by the National Security Agency, the one that's in the news so much today because of spying on people, and I was tested by them, recruited by them --

AMY GOODMAN: What do you mean you were recruited by them?

JOHN PERKINS: Well, while I was a senior in business school at Boston University, they came to me and suggested that I take their test. I had connections through my wife with people in the agency, and they put me through a series of tests, personality tests, lie detector, several days, and concluded that I would make a good economic hit man, and they also discovered a number of weaknesses in my character, which they could use then to hook me into the business, and then I ended up working for a private corporation.

AMY GOODMAN: Why didn't you work for the N.S.A.?

JOHN PERKINS: Because these days it's not done that way. Nobody wants to be able to connect the dots. So the N.S.A., the C.I.A., these types of organizations often recruit economic hit men and the jackals, the assassins, the 007 types, but they will recruit us, maybe train us, and then turn us over to a private corporation, so that you really can't make the connection, so that if I were caught at what I was doing in one of these countries, it would not reflect on our government; it would only reflect on the corporation that I worked for.

AMY GOODMAN: And who did you work for?

JOHN PERKINS: I worked for a company called Charles T. Main, a big consulting firm out of Boston.

AMY GOODMAN: And your job?

JOHN PERKINS: Well, I started off as economist, became chief economist, and my job really – I had a staff of several dozen people. My job was to get them, and for me to convince these countries to accept these very large loans, to get the banks to make the loans, to set up the deal so that the money went to big U.S. corporations. The country was left holding a huge debt, and then I would go in or one of my people would go in and say, “Look, you know, you owe us all this money. You can't pay your debts. Give us that pound of flesh.”

The other thing we do, Amy, and what's going on right now in Latin America is that as soon as one of these anti-American presidents is elected, such as Evo Morales, who you mentioned, in Bolivia, one of us goes in and says, “Hey, congratulations, Mr. President. Now that you're president, I just want to tell you that I can make you very, very rich, you and your family. We have several hundred million dollars in this pocket if you play the game our way. If you decide not to, over in this pocket, I've got a gun with a bullet with your name on it, in case you decide to keep your campaign promises and throw us out.”

Saturday, February 18, 2006

The End of Dollar Hegemony - An Important Speech by Congressman Ron Paul on the Floor of the House of Representatives

Click Here or Above to Watch Congressman Paul's Speech
Find the complete Text of the Speech Here.

Here is an excerpt:

Before the US House of Representatives, February 15, 2006

A hundred years ago it was called “dollar diplomacy.” After World War II, and especially after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1989, that policy evolved into “dollar hegemony.” But after all these many years of great success, our dollar dominance is coming to an end.

It has been said, rightly, that he who holds the gold makes the rules. In earlier times it was readily accepted that fair and honest trade required an exchange for something of real value.

First it was simply barter of goods. Then it was discovered that gold held a universal attraction, and was a convenient substitute for more cumbersome barter transactions. Not only did gold facilitate exchange of goods and services, it served as a store of value for those who wanted to save for a rainy day.

Though money developed naturally in the marketplace, as governments grew in power they assumed monopoly control over money. Sometimes governments succeeded in guaranteeing the quality and purity of gold, but in time governments learned to outspend their revenues. New or higher taxes always incurred the disapproval of the people, so it wasn’t long before Kings and Caesars learned how to inflate their currencies by reducing the amount of gold in each coin – always hoping their subjects wouldn’t discover the fraud. But the people always did, and they strenuously objected.

This helped pressure leaders to seek more gold by conquering other nations. The people became accustomed to living beyond their means, and enjoyed the circuses and bread. Financing extravagances by conquering foreign lands seemed a logical alternative to working harder and producing more. Besides, conquering nations not only brought home gold, they brought home slaves as well. Taxing the people in conquered territories also provided an incentive to build empires. This system of government worked well for a while, but the moral decline of the people led to an unwillingness to produce for themselves. There was a limit to the number of countries that could be sacked for their wealth, and this always brought empires to an end. When gold no longer could be obtained, their military might crumbled. In those days those who held the gold truly wrote the rules and lived well.

That general rule has held fast throughout the ages. When gold was used, and the rules protected honest commerce, productive nations thrived.W Whenever wealthy nations – those with powerful armies and gold – strived only for empire and easy fortunes to support welfare at home, those nations failed.

Today the principles are the same, but the process is quite different. Gold no longer is the currency of the realm; paper is. The truth now is: “He who prints the money makes the rules” – at least for the time being. Although gold is not used, the goals are the same: compel foreign countries to produce and subsidize the country with military superiority and control over the monetary printing presses.

Since printing paper money is nothing short of counterfeiting, the issuer of the international currency must always be the country with the military might to guarantee control over the system. This magnificent scheme seems the perfect system for obtaining perpetual wealth for the country that issues the de facto world currency. The one problem, however, is that such a system destroys the character of the counterfeiting nation’s people – just as was the case when gold was the currency and it was obtained by conquering other nations. And this destroys the incentive to save and produce, while encouraging debt and runaway welfare.

The pressure at home to inflate the currency comes from the corporate welfare recipients, as well as those who demand handouts as compensation for their needs and perceived injuries by others. In both cases personal responsibility for one’s actions is rejected.

When paper money is rejected, or when gold runs out, wealth and political stability are lost. The country then must go from living beyond its means to living beneath its means, until the economic and political systems adjust to the new rules – rules no longer written by those who ran the now defunct printing press.

Find the rest of Congressman Paul's Speech Here.

Congressman Ron Paul represents the 14th Congressional District in the US House of Representatives. IMHO, Dr. Paul is WITHOUT A DOUBT the most honest, intelligent, and trustworthy member of both houses of Congress.

You can find a biography of Congressman Paul Here.

You can vist Congressman Paul's official website Here.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

60 Minutes Reports BILLIONS "Wasted" in Iraq

Complete Story Here:

Excerpts Here:

(CBS) The United States has spent more than a quarter of a trillion dollars during its three years in Iraq, and more than $50 billion of it has gone to private contractors hired to guard bases, drive trucks, feed and shelter the troops and rebuild the country...

...Billions of dollars are unaccounted for, and there are widespread allegations of waste, fraud and war profiteering. So far only one case, the subject of a civil lawsuit that goes to trial this week, has been unsealed. It involves a company called Custer Battles...

...There were no banks or wire transfers to pay them, no bean counters to keep track of the money. Just vaults and footlockers stuffed with billions of dollars in cash.

"Fresh, new, crisp, unspent, just-printed $100 bills. It was the Wild West," recalls Frank Willis, who was the No. 2 man at the Coalition Provisional Authority’s Ministry of Transportation.

The money was a mixture of Iraqi oil revenues, war booty and U.S. government funds earmarked for the coalition authority. Whenever cash was needed, someone went down to the vault with a wheelbarrow or gunny sacks.

"Those are $100,000 bricks of $100 bills and that’s $2 million there," Willis explains, looking at a photo of brick-shaped stacks of money wrapped in plastic. "This, in fact, is a payment that we made on the 1st of August to a company called Custer Battles." ...

...Asked if he has any evidence that the accounting system was a little loose, Willis says, "I would describe it as nonexistent."

The $2 million given to Custer Battles was the first installment on a contract to provide security at Baghdad International Airport. The company had been started by Scott Custer, a former Army Ranger and Mike Battles, an unsuccessful congressional candidate from Rhode Island who claimed to be active in the Republican Party and have connections at the White House. They arrived in Baghdad with no money. Yet within a year they landed $100 million in contracts.

"They came in with a can do attitude whether they could or not. They always said yes," Willis says.

Did they have any experience?

"They were not experienced. They did not know what they were doing," Willis says...

..."And the contract looked to me like something that you and I would write over a bottle of vodka," Ballard says. "Complete with all the spelling and syntax errors and annexes, to be filled in later. They presented it the next day, and they got awarded a — about a $15 million contract."

Custer Battles was supposed to provide security for commercial aviation at Baghdad airport, including personnel, machinery and canine teams to screen passengers and cargo. But the airport never re-opened for commercial traffic.

Instead of canceling the contract or requiring Custer Battles to return the money, the Coalition Authority instead assigned them to operate a checkpoint outside the airport.

Asked how they did on that job, Ballard says, "They failed miserably." ...

According to Ballard, the contract required Custer Battles to provide sophisticated X-ray equipment to scan the contents of incoming trucks.

"These were multi-million dollar devices for which they received a considerable cash advance, so that they could procure them and then they never procured this equipment," says Ballard.

As for the bomb sniffing canine teams, Ballard says, "I eventually saw one dog. The dog did not appear to be a certified, trained dog. And the dog was incapable of operating in that environment." ...

..."So neither the dog nor the handler were qualified?" Kroft asked.

"I think it was a guy with his pet, to be honest with you," he replied, laughing.

In a memo obtained by 60 Minutes, the airport’s director of security wrote to the Coalition Authority: "Custer Battles has shown themselves to be unresponsive, uncooperative, incompetent, deceitful, manipulative and war profiteers. Other than that they are swell fellows."

According to a subsequent investigation by the U.S. Air Force, Custer Battles set up sham companies in the Cayman Islands to fabricate phony invoices that it submitted to the Coalition Authority with the intention of fraudulently inflating its profits.

According to a Custer Battles spreadsheet, which was left behind after a meeting with U.S. officials, the company submitted invoices on the currency contract totaling nearly $10 million, when its actual costs were less than $4 million.

Electricity costs of $74,000 were invoiced to the Coalition Authority at $400,000. And those trucks that didn’t work were bought on the local market for $228,000 and billed to the Coalition Authority for $800,000...

...To date, the U.S. government has taken no action to recover any of the missing money.

First, 60 Minutes using the phrase "Billions Wasted" instead of the phrase "Billions Stolen" is "Deceitful".

Second, They didn't seem to pursue the fact that one of the founders "Mike Battles, an unsuccessful congressional candidate from Rhode Island who claimed to be active in the Republican Party and have connections at the White House." Notice the use of the word "claimed"... If Custer and Battles didn't have "connections to the White House" then how come "They arrived in Baghdad with no money. Yet within a year they landed $100 million in contracts."

Third, It looks like little ole Custer and Battles is getting set up to be the poster child and scapegoat for war profiteering in Iraq while Halliburton, Bechtel, Northrup Grumman, and the Carlyle Group and the other big fish walk away scott free to spend YOUR tax money sipping pina coladas on a caribean beach.

Lastly, The American People are such tools... Letting themselves get ripped off by this criminal gang of incompent liars while they watch an average of four hours of television a day still believeing the Iraq war was about weapons of mass destruction and bringing democracy to the middle east. - Etienne

Monday, February 13, 2006

Syria Dumps US Dollar for Euro

From the Reuters' story found Here.

DAMASCUS (Reuters) - Syria has switched all of the state's foreign currency transactions to euros from dollars amid a political confrontation with the United States, the head of state-owned Commercial Bank of Syria said on Monday.

"This is a precaution. We are talking about billions of dollars," Duraid Durgham told Reuters.

The bank, which still dominates the Syrian market although private banks have been allowed to set up in the last few years, has also stopped dealing with dollars in the international foreign exchange flows of private clients.

The United States has been at the forefront of international pressure on Syria for its alleged role in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri a year ago. Damascus denies involvement in the killing.

"It looks like a kind of pre-emptive action aimed at making their foreign assets safer, preventing them from getting frozen in case of any conflict," said a Middle East economist who requested anonymity.

The real reason that the US is whipping up a fight with Iran is that the country is opening a bourse (exchange) in March that will sell oil in Euros vs. crappy-ass depreciating US Dollars(USD). For decades the USD has enjoyed a free ride in that all oil transactions have been priced in USD on both the NYMEX and the International Petroleum Exchange in London (now ICE Futures). Since the majority of countries are oil importers they have had to hold billions of dollars in rapidly depreciating USD keeping those USD off the market. In March these countries (many of which don't like the US anymore thanks to the policies of the WORST PRESIDENT EVER) will now be free to dump their USD for Euro. Add the billions of dollars that the Syrians have just dumped and expect a dollar in free-fall and a war with Iran in March. - Etienne

BYU's Dr. Steven Jones Blows the Roof off Utah Auditorium

Article Here:


On Wednesday, February 1, a quiet, "churchy-looking" gentleman in a white shirt and tie walked into a packed auditorium on the campus of Utah Valley State College and electrified the room like a rock star. The 150-seat auditorium was filled to capacity, with every seat occupied, and people sitting in the aisles from the stage floor to the back of the room. Video cameras on tripods lined the back row. Two documentary-film crews were in attendance, in addition to the school's camera crew, and various independent journalists. Seven "spill-over" rooms, with seating for 40-50 each, were also filled to capacity. On this very conservative campus (in the most conservative county in the most conservative state in the union), where community leaders pulled out all the stops in 2004 to prevent Michael Moore from speaking as part of his anti-Bush, pro-Kerry "Slacker Uprising Tour," Dr. Steven Jones, this pious professor from the Mormon Church-owned Brigham Young University, calmly, gently, gave a simple physics lesson on the collapse of the World Trade Center buildings, the implications of which awed the audience with a sense of world-historical significance, and implied an indictment of the present administration so utterly devastating that it made Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 look like a Bush apologia.

Dr. Jones argues that the physics behind the government's explanation of the collapse of the Twin Towers on September 11 do not make sense, and that a better (and perhaps only) explanation for their collapse was that they were demolished, exactly the way structural engineers bring down large buildings, by pre-positioned explosive devices set off in precise sequences. He argues that the 650 degree Celsius temperature of burning jet fuel would not have been hot enough to even bend the steel girders of the WTC Towers, let alone to melt or evaporate them, as recovered beams indicate. And even if it was hot enough to evaporate the steel, the towers should not have collapsed as they did, pancaking so perfectly into their own footprints. On the rare times when such structures have failed (always due to earthquakes), they have toppled over sideways. The towers would have had to have been perfectly sliced, at every point along a horizontal plane at exactly the same instant, for something even resembling a pancaking effect to occur. And even if they did somehow pancake perfectly into their own footprints due to a structural failure, they would not have done it in the time it took for them to collapse, falling at essentially the speed of an apple dropped from the top of one of the towers, with nothing between it and the ground but thin air. The steel and concrete in the floors that collapsed should have taken some measurable time to break, and thus slowed the collapse somewhat as it unfolded. And even if it did collapse, at super speed, phwack phwack phwack, floor by floor, as fast as an apple falling through the air, impelled by the weight of the decapitated structure above it, its solid steel frame severed like a head by a flaming guillotine, that does not explain the molten steel seen at the Ground Zero clean-up site many days after the event. What could have caused such heat? asked Professor Jones.

And on it went, point by point, for almost two hours. Nothing about the physics of "what we know" about 9/11 seemed to add up. And all that's not to mention the mysterious collapse of the forgotten WTC-7, the third steel-frame building that imploded due to fire, not only that day, but in the history of architectural design--the building that was not hit by a plane, that was surrounded by other buildings equally impacted but structurally undamaged by the collapse of the towers, that, with no jet fuel or violent impact, but allegedly due to a small number of scattered "debris fires," collapsed, pancaking perfectly into its own footprint, looking exactly like video images of buildings being demolished by pre-positioned explosive devices. Playing the one available video of WTC-7 collapsing at slow speed, Dr. Jones used his laser pointer to indicate the explosive "squibs" clearly seen shooting their way up the sides of the building as it collapsed from the top center down. He showed still images of similar micro-explosions on the sides of the Twin Towers, with steel beams clearly visible, ejected out of the sides of the buildings, ahead of the dust, blown out before the above portions collapsed.

WTC7: The Smoking Gun

The Complete Video of Dr. Jones' Seminar Can Be Found Here.

751MB .AVI version of the Seminar can be downloaded Here.

An MP3 version of Dr. Jones Seminar Can be Found Here.

Dr. Jones' Complete Slidedeck from the Seminar:

Dr. Jones Peer-ReviewedResearch Paper on the Physics of 911:

Guerrila News Networks Story on Dr. Jones' Utah Seminar:

Scholars for 911 Truth's Website:

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Through the Looking Glass

From Jesse's Crossroads Cafe

Bush Busted Lying Yet Again!!!

Reuters Story Here

From the Reuters' Story:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Jack Abramoff said in correspondence made public on Thursday that President Bush met him "almost a dozen" times, disputing White House claims Bush did not know the former lobbyist at the center of a corruption scandal.

"The guy saw me in almost a dozen settings, and joked with me about a bunch of things, including details of my kids. Perhaps he has forgotten everything, who knows," Abramoff wrote in an e-mail to Kim Eisler, national editor for the Washingtonian magazine.

Abramoff added that Bush also once invited him to his Texas ranch.

The messages were made public by the American Progress Action Fund, a liberal activist group. Eisler confirmed their accuracy to Reuters but said he did not intend them to become public.

"They reflect the feeling of frustration he has not just with Bush but with all these guys claiming they didn't know him," said Eisler, who knew Abramoff through a book he wrote about the Pequot Indian tribe.

Abramoff pleaded guilty to fraud charges in early January and is cooperating with prosecutors in a corruption probe that could implicate lawmakers and officials across Washington.

Bush has said he never had a discussion with Abramoff and does not remember having his picture taken with him.

The White House has said Abramoff attended three Hanukkah receptions at the White House.

Eisler said he had seen five photographs of Abramoff with Bush, none taken at Hanukkah parties.

Profit Bubble? Is history about to repeat itself?

The following is from Jesse's Crossroads Cafe ("Need Little, Want Less, Love More") I hate to sound like a broken record folks but... It's going to be Ugly... VERY, VERY, VERY UGLY!!

Friday, February 10, 2006

America’s trade deficit hits all-time high - Stocks & Economy -

America'’s trade deficit hits all-time high - Stocks & Economy -

From the article:

WASHINGTON - The U.S. trade deficit soared to an all-time high of $725.8 billion in 2005, pushed upward by record imports of oil, food, cars and other consumer goods. The deficit with China hit an all-time high as did America's deficits with Japan, Europe, OPEC, Canada, Mexico and South and Central America.

The Commerce Department reported Friday that the gap between what America sells abroad and what it imports rose to $725.8 billion last year, up by 17.5 percent from the previous record of $617.6 billion set in 2004.

It marked the fourth consecutive year that AmericaÂ’s trade deficit has set a record and was certain to spark increased debate in Congress over President BushÂ’s trade policies. Since mid-2000 the country has lost nearly 3 million manufacturing jobs and Democrats blame the administrationÂ’s policy of emphasizing free trade agreements...

This Chart is from last year... As you can see we are now off the chart... in the wrong direction..

...America'’s trade deficit set records with much of the rest of the world as well. Among those records was a $122.4 billion gap with the 25-nation European Union, a $92.7 billion deficit with the nations that belong to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, a $76.5 billion deficit with Canada and a $50.1 billion deficit with Mexico. Canada and Mexico are America's partners in the North American Free Trade Agreement. The deficit with the countries of South and Central America rose to a record $50.7 billion last year...

...The rising trade deficits must be financed by increased borrowing from foreigners, who so far have been happy to sell us their products and hold U.S. dollars in payment which they invest in U.S. stock, bonds and other assets. The concern is that at some point foreigners will want to reduce their dollar holdings. If the change occurs at a rapid pace it could send the value of the dollar, U.S. stocks and bond prices all plunging.

Foreign mechant ships arrive in the US filled to the brim with imported goods and head home empty except for US T-Bills in the glove compartment. Foreign countries are improving their competitiveness in manufacturing while the US is deindustrializing. Surely everyone can see this is going to end badly? Got Gold?

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Colin Powell's former Chief of Staff admits that case for Iraq war was a "HOAX" on the American people, the international community, and the UN

NEW YORK, Feb. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- In an interview airing tonight on the PBS weekly newsmagazine NOW, Colin Powell's former Chief of Staff Lawrence Wilkerson makes the startling claim that much of Powell's landmark speech to the United Nations laying out the Bush Administration's case for the Iraq war was false.

"I participated in a hoax on the American people, the international community, and the United Nations Security Council," says Wilkerson, who helped prepare the address.

The NOW report, which airs days before the third anniversary of Powell's speech, examines the serious doubts that existed about the key evidence being used by the American government at the very time Powell's speech was being planned and delivered.

"I recall vividly the Secretary of State walking into my office," Wilkerson tells NOW. "He said: 'I wonder what will happen if we put half a million troops on the ground in Iraq and comb the country from one end to the other and don't find a single weapon of mass destruction?'" In fact, no weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq.

After the Downing Street Memo and now Lawrence Wilkerson's confession it is amazing that not only do people still believe Bush and his criminal administration but there are still idiot Americans still driving around with Bush bumper stickers on their cars and defending these murdering war criminals instead of demanding their impeachment, trial, and imprisonment. - Etienne

An Open Letter to Bill Murphy of GATA for his Midas Commentary

Dear Bill,

First, I wanted to congratulate you again on the superb DVD of GATA's GoldRush 21 conference and for publicizing the Credit Agricole Report on the manipulation of the Gold Market. Both are important contributions to ending the Federal Reserve's pyramid scheme and returning the US to sound, honest money sooner rather than later.

More importantly I wanted to give you a report from the front lines on the status of the retail market. Because I blog anonymously to protect my career I can't be specific about the community but can tell you that I deal with with two different retail coin and bullion dealers in my town. Last week I went to purchase silver bullion from dealer #1 and had planned to add about $1,000 to my portfolio in American Silver Eagles. Dealer #1 is a substantial dealer and was totally out of Silver Eagles and had to satisfy my order with Canadian Maple Leafs.

Today I went with a good friend of mine who was buying precious metals for the first time and wanted to start out with ~ $1,000 in gold and silver bullion and we went to coin and bullion dealer #2. We had started to go yesterday during the dip but my friend got tied up on errands and we postponed it for the day. Needless to say it was a decision that ended up costing my friend ~$30-$35 dollars in hindsight.

Dealer #2 was totally out of Silver Canadian Maples Leafs. My friend ended up with one gold Krugerrand, an assortment of one ounce silver rounds, and a 10 ounce Engelhardt bar. When I asked the clerk if people had been buying on the dip she replied that YES they had seen substantial buying yesterday on the dip. The last time that I had been to see dealer #2 shortly after Gold had passed $500 an ounce and had asked if folks were buying and taking possession of physical metal she had told me that yes sales had definitely increased but people were coming in and selling gold as well with the price at 25 year highs. This time she indicated that it was mostly buying.

My take-aways:

1. The fact that two of the best dealers in town can't keep up with retail demand for Silver Eagles and Silver Canadian Maple Leafs means that the hoarding of precious metals has begun in earnest.
2. The suckers that sold at $500 an ounce are kicking themselves and don't have anymore gold to sell or wised up and even with Gold at $545-$566 and what appeared, momentarily, to be a precipitous drop in the market are NOT willing to sell at these prices.
3. Everytime the cartel bombs the gold price they can expect to see the retail market respond and demand more and more physical metal exacerbating their predicament.

Keep up the good work and GO GATA!! - Etienne

"There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion." --Ludwig von Mises

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Go GATA!! and Start Hoarding!!

I have just watched a most superb documentary called Gold Rush 21 by the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee or GATA.

I have been buying Gold since March of 2003 and have been following GATA for at least a year before that. I can't congratulate Bill Murphy and Chris Powell enough on a fantastic DVD presentation that not only makes a superb case for exactly how the central banksters have been artifically supressing the price of Gold BUT an equally as good case for the economic importance of Gold to society as honest money! I urge everyone to purchase this video IMMEDIATELY before you see more of your wealth depreciated away by crappy-ass fiat paper currency.

The bombs have already started falling on the central banks with Cheuvreux, The equity broking arm of Crédit Agricole publishing a report entitled: Remonetisation of Gold: Start Hoarding

The report's executive summary says:

"We are raising our mid-cycle gold price estimate to USD900/oz from USD750/oz and see the possibility of a spike to USD2,000, or higher. Covert selling (via central bank lending) has artificially depressed the price for a decade.

"Central banks have 10,000-15,000 tonnes of gold less than their officially reported reserves of 31,000.
This gold has been lent to bullion banks and their counterparties and has already been sold for jewelry, etc. Non-gold producers account for most and may be unable to cover shorts without causing a spike in the gold price.

"There is a supply deficit in the gold market of around 1,300 tonnes per year before any central bank selling and perhaps 700 tonnes per year after 'official' sales but before covert selling. This compares with world gold mine output of only 2,500 tonnes per year. Some central banks, notably Russia, are starting to buy gold.

"Gold acts as an early warning of potential crisis such rising inflationary/deflationary pressures and general confidence in paper currency, especially the U.S. dollar.
A strongly rising gold price could have severe consequences for U.S. monetary policy and the U.S. dollar. History suggests that gold always wins against an inflating paper currency (that is, one subject to excessive supply growth).

"Gold and gold mining stocks are poised for an unprecedented rise in prices and profile. Investors in UK/European equities need to assess the implications for their portfolios. ..."

The Cheuvreux/Credit Agricole report details GATA's findings in Chapter IV, "Analysis of the Gold Market," and concurs in them as "broadly correct."

The complete Cheuvreux report can be found here:

I would also recommend:
The Role of Gold in the unified GCC Currency by the Gulf Research Center
Not Free, Not Fair published by Sprott Asset Management.

I highly recommend getting some physical gold ASAP!!! Once you have the physical then you can think about rolling your dice with the paper gold but given the very real possibility of a complete collapse of the dollar I don't recommend trusting your family's life to paper promises alone... Etienne