Submitted by William Bonner, Chairman – Bonner & Partners
Our “Storm Warning” for the Year Ahead …
Ils viennent jusque dans vos bras / They’re coming right into your arms
Égorger vos fils, vos compagnes! / To cut the throats of your sons, your women!
Aux armes, citoyens / To arms, citizens
Formez vos bataillons / Form your battalions
Marchons, marchons! / Let’s march, let’s march!
Qu’un sang impur / Let an impure blood
Abreuve nos sillons! / Soak our fields!
– “La Marseillaise”
PARIS – And so the old year ended…
La Closerie has been around for some time – and it seems it has always been popular.
The Closerie des Lilacs brasserie was packed. Every table was taken. On the corner of the Boulevard de Montparnasse and the Boulevard Saint-Michel, this was one of Hemingway’s favorite restaurants. It is now popular with tourists as well as locals.
Coming in, we heard familiar American accents behind us, but almost everyone else appeared to be native to the city. It was bright, the way brasseries are supposed to be…
“The way things are supposed to be” is our beat at the Diary. The way they really are is beyond us. Far too complex. Infinitely nuanced. Mind-blowingly intricate.
“Is,” as President Clinton noted, is too high a standard. “Ought to be” is the best we can do. Only the gods can know what is really going on. All we can do is to observe certain superficial patterns and rules – like waves on the surface of a deep sea – and wonder how they might slap against our little bark. Continue reading
My work documenting how the law was lost began about a quarter of a century ago. A close friend and distinguished attorney, Dean Booth, first brought to my attention the erosion of the legal principles on which rests the rule of law in the United States. My columns on the subject got the attention of an educational institution that invited me to give a lecture on the subject. Subsequently, I was invited to give a lecture on “How The Law Was Lost” at the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law in New York City.
The work coalesced into a book, The Tyranny Of Good Intentions, coauthored with my research associate, Lawrence M. Stratton, published in 2000, with an expanded edition published in 2008. We were able to demonstrate that Sir Thomas More’s warning about prosecutors and courts disregarding law in order to more easily convict undesirables and criminals has had the result of turning law away from being a shield of the people and making it into a weapon in the hands of government. That is what we witness in the saga of the Hammonds, long-time ranchers in the Harney Basin of Oregon.
With the intervention of Ammon Bundy, another rancher who suffered illegal persecution by the Bureau of Land Management but stood them off with help from armed militia, and his supporters, the BLM’s decades long persecution of the innocent Hammonds might have come to a crisis before you read this.
Bundy and militiamen, whose count varies from 15 to 150 in the presstitute media, have seized an Oregon office of the BLM as American liberty’s protest against the frame-up of the Hammonds on false charges. As I write the Oregon National Guard and FBI are on the way.
The militiamen have said that they are prepared to die for principles, and the rule of law is one of them. Of course, the presstitute media is making the militiamen into the lawbreakers—and even calling them terrorists—and not the federal government’s illegal prosecution of the Hammonds, whose crime was their refusal to sell their ranch to the government to be included in the Masher National Wildlife Refuge.
If there are only 15 militiamen, there is a good chance that they will all be killed, but if there are 150 armed militiamen prepared for a shootout, the outcome could be different. Continue reading
In September 1979, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis published a paper that attempted to clarify the monetary and economic characteristics of repurchase agreements. The name itself offers little but further confusion as prior to the 1990’s repos could be classified as either collateralized loans or actual sales and purchases depending on individual circumstances. In some cases, the two counterparties on a repo might simultaneously structure each of their end of the transaction as the opposite condition; consistency was a matter of idiosyncrasy. The Federal Reserve itself used such flexibility in originally conducting open market operations, as the Fed holds absolutely no statutory authority to engage in collateralized lending of this kind, but does hold legal standing with which to buy and sell government bonds.
In 1961, the Federal Reserve voted to reauthorize, or rather reaffirm what it believed existing authorization, of the FOMC to engage in repurchase agreements with non-bank securities dealers at less than the Discount Rate. In the Fed’s 48th Annual Report, it is noted that Governor J.L. Robertson dissented from that vote in further expressing, “the opinion that repurchase agreements were in fact not purchases of securities in the open market, such as the Reserve Banks were authorized by law to enter into, but instead were loans to dealers at fixed interest rates that were not related to the yield on the securities.” That made them, to Governor Robertson at least, dubious monetary instruments and Open Market policy. Continue reading
Submitted by Mark O’Byrne – GoldCore
On January 1st, 2016, the new bail-in regime became law putting at risk the deposits of savers and companies in the EU.
EU countries join the UK, the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand in having plans for bail-ins in the event of banks and other large financial institutions getting into difficulty. It is now the case that in the event of bank failure, personal andcorporate deposits could be confiscated.
The bail-in architecture was seen in the Cyprus bank bail-ins that were seen in 2003. Then, deposits of over €100,000 were confiscated in “haircuts” in order to bail out banks in Cyprus. Now the exact same principles that were used in Cyprus – which we were told was unique and a one off – are going to apply to all of Europe. Continue reading