There Is No Freedom Without Truth

Submitted by Dr. Paul Craig Roberts – Institute for Public Economy

“This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every statehouse, every office of the federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military–industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together.” — President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Dwight D. Eisenhower was a five-star general in charge of the Normandy Invasion and a popular two-term President of the United States. Today he would be called a “conspiracy theorist.”

Were Ike to be issuing his warning from the White House today, conservative Republicans like Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) would be screaming at Ike for impugning the motives of “the patriotic industry that protects our freedom.”

Neoconservatives such as William Kristol would be demanding to know why President Eisenhower was issuing warnings about our own military-industrial complex instead of warning about the threat presented by the Soviet military.

The presstitute media would be implying that Ike was going a bit senile in his old age, a tactic the presstitutes used against President Reagan as he struggled to end stagflation and the Cold War.

By January 17, 1961, when Eisenhower issued his warning in his farewell address to the American People, it was already too late. Cold Warriors had had their hooks into the American taxpayer for 15 years after the end of WW II, and the military-industrial complex had replaced “mom and apple pie” as the most venerated and entrenched US interest. The Dulles brothers ran the State Department and CIA and overthrew governments at will. (Read The Brothers ) Continue reading

The War on the Credit Cycle Has Only Just Begun…

Submitted by William Bonner, Chairman – Bonner & Partners

Socialism is for Simpletons

RHINEBECK, New York – We spent the weekend up north… where people put “Feel the Bern” bumper stickers on their Subarus. In a tavern in Rhinebeck – where we are writing – the “socialist” slap seems to have lost its sting. There is a reverential portrait of FDR near the bar.

“He’s the only candidate who makes any sense to me,” said a local. “You can’t trust Hillary. And the Republicans are all nuts.”


sanders_2016He seems to make a lot of sense… provided your horizon ends roughly at the edge of your plate.


He’s right. You can’t trust Hillary. The Republicans may all be nuts. And socialism “makes sense”… in a simpleton kind of way. Most voters want more stuff. Sanders offers to take stuff from other people and give it to them. That “makes sense,” doesn’t it?

Too bad. Because as Maggie Thatcher pointed out, you soon run out of other people’s money. But the voters of Dutchess County don’t seem to be concerned. Back to the markets… Continue reading

Personal Savings Up Meaning No Energy ‘Tax Cut’ Reaches Consumers

Submitted by Jeffrey Snider  –  Alhambra Investment Partners

If China and US manufacturing are suffering from what looks like the contours of a slowly progressing recession, we don’t have to go very far to find the genesis. The common denominator is and has been US consumers. That much is evident in very clear fashion through retail sales during the Christmas season that were abysmal. The BEA’s update for full PCE figures shows mostly the same, even though overall PCE is highly influenced by “services” spending in the form of imputations and, where evident, services in the form of a tax (health care).

Real PCE spending was slightly negative in December month-over-month, which suggests another reason why GDP disappointed without too much snow or “residual seasonality.” That makes two of the last three months with essentially zero spending growth despite both what the BEA suggests as somewhat rising income and no “inflation.” This has been an issue with these data points for some time, as the BEA continually suggests that income is rising faster than spending only to revise income lower in persistent fashion. This dichotomy is highlighted by the personal savings rate, which in count of repeated revisions appears as just noise almost without discernable pattern.

ABOOK Feb 2016 PCE Savings Rate Revisions

Continue reading

Gold Prices To 3 Month High As Investors Sell Risky Assets

Submitted by Mark O’Byrne  –  GoldCore

Gold prices have continued to eke out further gains today. The very poor ISM data yesterday saw the dollar fall against all major currencies and particularly gold.

Bullion is seeing safe haven flows and gains due to increased concerns about the economic outlook. The narrative that the US economy is in recovery is coming into doubt. The weaker than expected ISM data showed a sharp slowdown in the services sector in the U.S. in January.

Gold in USD – 1 Month – 

This means that the Fed will be more likely to put interest rates on hold. Indeed, as we have long contended we believe that the Fed may in time have to decrease interest rates and may follow other leading central banks and have to adopt negative interest rates in the coming months.

Concerns about the global economy slowing down had seen falls in Asian and European share indices and this was the initial impetus for gold to go higher yesterday.

Stocks have come under pressure again in recent days as corporate earnings have disappointed and earning forecasts are being revised lower.

There are also increasing concerns about banks and bank shares have taken a hammering in recent days. Credit Suisse reported worse than expected fourth-quarter results that sent the bank’s shares to a 24-year low and Deutsche Bank shares have fallen 20 per cent since they issued a profit warning on January 20.

Gold has broken above the 200 day moving average which is bullish from a technical perspective. Were it to close above this level this week, it would suggest we may see further gains in February.

The Daily Debt Rattle

Submitted by Raúl Ilargi Meijer  –  The Automatic Earth

• Oil Bears Closing $600 Million Triple-Short Fund Bet Adds To Tumult (Reuters)
• Shell Confirms 10,000 Job Cuts as Profits Plunge 87% (BBC)
• Bank Selloffs Replacing Oil Rout As Stock Market Pressure Point (BBG)
• European Banks Near ‘Terrifying’ Crisis: Raoul Pal (CNBC)
• Deutsche Bank’s Troubles Unmask Bigger Risks (AFR)
• Kyle Bass: China Banks Months Away From ‘Danger Territory’ (CNBC)
• Hugh Hendry: Major Chinese Devaluation Would Be Disastrous (CW)
• The Great Skyscraper Bubble Is Ready to Pop! (Dent)
• Investors Heading for Slaughter One More Time – David Stockman (Hunter)
• US January Truck Orders Down 48% (Reuters)
• Why The US Treasury Hides Its Saudi Investor (BBG)
• Crippled EU Is No Longer The ‘Anarcho-Imperial Monster’ We Once Feared (AEP)
• MPs Call For Immediate Halt Of UK Arms Sales To Saudi Arabia (Guardian)
• Greek Pension Reform Sparks General Strike (BBG)
• Drone Footage Reveals Extent of Devastation In Syria (Ind.)
• EU Agrees Funding For Turkey To Curb Migrant Flows (Reuters)