Tuesday, April 23, 2019

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The Unraveling of American/Russian Relations — Paul Craig Roberts

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by Paul Craig Roberts, Paul Craig Roberts:

Dear Readers: I agree that the official Las Vegas story seems to be unraveling. A public mass shooting should be transparent, not opaque. I think we explored the story long enough to discover that without knowing the facts, we cannot arrive at an explanation with confidence.

It is time to move on to another unraveling—that of US/Russian relations. This unraveling is far more serious as it threatens life on earth. I have warned of the consequences of Washington threatening Russia’s security by breaking agreement after agreement, by placing missile bases on Russia’s borders, by orchestrating anti-Russian coups in former Soviet provinces, and by a continuing volley of false accusations against Russia. There is no act more reckless and irresponsible than to make one nuclear power fear nuclear attack from another.

Alert observers have become aware of the mounting danger. Canadian professor Michel Chossudovsky writes that Washington has taken nuclear war from a hypothetical scenario to a real danger that threatens the future of humanity. https://www.globalresearch.ca/towards-a-world-war-iii-scenario-breaking-the-big-lie/5348384

Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet leader who worked with President Ronald Reagan to end the Cold War and the threat of nuclear Armageddon, has appealed to President Trump and President Putin to hold a summit meeting and bring an end to the rising tensions. Gorbachev wrote in the Washington Post that “it is far from normal that the presidents of major nuclear powers meet merely on the margins of international gatherings.” This is especially the case as “relations between the two nations are in a severe crisis.” http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48004.htm

Gorbachev’s warning could be an understatement. Last March, General Viktor Poznikhir, the deputy commander of the Russian military’s Operation Command expressed concern that Washington could be preparing a surprise nuclear attack on Russia. See https://dninews.com/article/moscow-us-missile-systems-europe-may-lead-sudden-nuclear-attack-russia andhttp://www.newsweek.com/russia-us-global-missile-defense-lead-nuclear-war-europe-591244 andhttps://www.yahoo.com/news/russian-officials-u-global-missile-192829855.html

Had any such statement from the Russian high command been issued anytime during the 20th century Cold War era, the President of the United States would have immediately contacted the Soviet leader and given every assurance that no such plan or intentions toward Russia existed. As far as I can tell, the Trump White House let this ominous announcement pass unremarked. If this is the case, it must have provided confirmation to the Russians’ conclusion.

For some time I have pointed out that the entirety of the West, both the US and its vassal states, continue to ignore very clear Russian warnings. Gilbert Doctorow has made the same point. https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/10/10/deaf-ear-dire-russian-warnings.html

Perhaps the most clear of all was Putin’s public statement that “Russia will never again fight a war on its own territory.” If Washington’s EU vassals did not hear this clear warning that they are courting their nuclear destruction—especially the Poles and Romanians who have mindlessly hosted US missile bases—they are as deaf as they are stupid.

One Russian official told the idiot British government to its face that if the British threat to first use nuclear weapons is directed at Russia, if such an attempt is made, Great Britain will disappear from the face of the earth.

There is no doubt that that would be the case.

So why do Washington’s impotent vassals talk tough to Russia, a government that only desires peace and has threatened Britain in no way. Nor has the Russian government threatened France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Greece, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, or any of the former Eastern European vassals of the Soviet Union that exchanged their captivity to the Soviet Union for captivity to Washington. Russia has not even threatened Ukraine, which Russia could wipe out in a couple of minutes. Why are all of these countries, apparently led by mindless, gutless two-bit politicians, aligned with Washington’s false propaganda against Russia?

The answer is money. The vassals are paid to go along with the lies. As Alain of Lille said as long ago as the 12th century, “not God, not Caesar, but money is all.”

What are the forces driving Washington’s provocation of Russia? There are three, and they comprise a vast conspiracy against life on earth.

One is the Neoconservatives. The Neoconservatives were convinced by the Soviet Collapse that History has chosen not the proletariat but American “democratic capitalism” as the socio-politico-economic system for the world, and that this choice by History conveys on America the status of the “indispensable, exceptional” country, a status that places America above all other countries and above international law and, indeed, America’s own laws.

Read More @ PaulCraigRoberts.org

Pharmacist who shuttles carloads of pharma drugs to Congress admits they’re senile, brain-damaged patients who “might not even remember what happened yesterday”

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by Ethan Huff, Natural News:

Many of the nation’s top lawmakers appear to be pharmaceutical drug addicts who rely on a steady stream of pharma pills being covertly shipped into them daily at Capitol Hill via a local pharmacy in D.C. known as Grubb’s. It’s a quaint little place that a recent article published by STATNews.com featured in an almost sentimental light, while also admitting that many members of Congress who utilize its services likely “aren’t all there” in terms of their brain function.

Mike Kim, the head pharmacist and owner of Grubb’s, should know; he’s the one who’s responsible for filling prescriptions for members of Congress. And he says that what he sees are plenty of prescriptions for things like diabetes and circulation issues, as well as for more serious conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. This, he says, is somewhat concerning because it calls into question whether or not the people crafting our country’s laws are cognitively fit to be making such important decisions.

“It makes you kind of sit back and say, ‘Wow, they’re making the highest laws of the land and they might not even remember what happened yesterday,’” Kim reportedly told STATNews.com.

Grubb’s has apparently been involved in legally trafficking pharmaceuticals to and from the Capitol building on a daily basis since at least 1997. It operates through the Office of the Attending Physician (OAP), which basically functions as the personal physician for members of Congress. The OAP is secretive in its dealings – and understandably so, seeing as how the personal medical affairs of members of Congress should remain private, just as they do for every other American.

But where the concern lies is with the ease of access that Congress has to drugs in general, not to mention the ones that are used to treat cognitive decline. Not only does Congress get to cut to the front of the line, so to speak, when it comes to accessing drugs at Grubb’s but it also gets them hand delivered – oftentimes to the tune of 800 prescriptions per day.

“Nearly every day for at least two decades pharmaceutical drugs have been brought by the carload to the Capitol – an arrangement so under the radar that even pharmacy lobbyists who regularly pitch Congress on their industry aren’t aware of it,” writes Erin Mershon for STATNews.com.

“The deliveries arrive at the secretive Office of the Attending Physician, an elaborate medical clinic where Navy doctors triage medical emergencies and provide basic health care for lawmakers who pay an annual fee of just over $600. Every one comes from Washington’s oldest community pharmacy, Grubb’s.”

John McCain: Grubb’s has ‘injured me on several occasions’

While it can’t be said with certainty which members of Congress are taking Alzheimer’s drugs, there are clues for those with eyes to see. During her failed bid for the presidency, Hillary Clinton, for instance, showed signs of possible brain abnormalities, spiraling into strange bouts of head bobbing and eye movements that point to brain damage. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has similarly displayed strange behaviors while giving speeches that suggest she might have a form of dementia.

Read More @ NaturalNews.com

Smut Mogul Larry Flynt Offers $10 Million For Info Leading To Impeachment of Trump

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by Tim Brown, Freedom Outpost:

Larry Flynt, the 74-year-old smut mogul who said, “Politics is my hobby, smut is my vocation” has put up $10 million to anyone “for information leading to the impeachment and removal from office of Donald J. Trump.”

Flynt, the creator of Hustler Magazine whose net worth is $500 million, is just another in a long line of people both celebrities and politicians who are calling for President Trump’s head on a platter.

The reward was tweeted out by Fox Business News’ Liz Claman.

BizPacReview reports:

The statement denounced the Electoral College, suggesting Republicans stole the 2016 election while declaring Trump’s presidency to be “illegitimate.”

…an interesting word coming from a porn magnate.

Looking past high crimes and misdemeanors needed to impeach, Flynt points to the firing of former FBI director James Comey and Trump’s response to the violence seen earlier this year in Charlottesville, Va., as reasons to remove the president.

Setting a low bar that would have Barack Obama sweating bullets, other reasons that Flynt detailed were “telling hundreds of bald-faced lies” and a “complete ignorance of world affairs.”

Flynt upped the ante considerable [sic] from a meager $1 million reward he offered back in October 2016 in a desperate ploy to derail the Trump train speeding toward victory.

Of course, millions of dollars and months of effort in trying to push a fake news Russian collusion investigation hasn’t done it.  So, what makes Flynt think he can accomplish what that couldn’t?

Some people believe that Flynt is merely engaging in a publicity stunt.

Read More @ FreedomOutpost.com

Killing Off the Vegas Witnessess, JFK Assassination Style

by Dave Hodges, The Common Sense Show:

The Common Sense Show is issuing the following warning:

TO ALL EYEWITNESSES TO THE VEGAS MASSACRE, BE ADVISED YOUR LIVES ARE IN EXTREME DANGER. YOU MAY WISH TO CONSIDER NOT SPEAKING TO ANYONE, AND I MEAN ANYONE, AND THENSCRUB ALL SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS. THE TRAIL OF LAS VEGAS EYEWITNESS BODIES ARE GROWING IN A MANNER THAT IS REMINISCENT OF THE KENNEDY ASSASSINATION. THE COMMON SENSE SHOW GREATLY RESPECTS THE SACRIFICES AND COURAGE OF LAW ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL. THESE BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN ARE NORMALLY A CITIZEN’S BEST FRIEND. HOWEVER, IN THE CASE OF THE LAS VEGAS MASSACRE, YOU CAN TRUST NOBODY AND ALL ARE ADVISED TO NOT SPEAK AND WRITE PUBLICLY. AS AN INDIVIDUAL CITIZEN YOU HAVE NO OBLIGATION TO RISK YOUR LIFE. THE COMMON SENSE SHOW CAN ASSURE YOU THAT WE ALREADY HAVE ALL THE EVIDENCE WE NEED TO EXPOSE THE TRUTH. 

Killing off the Witnesses Was the Norm In the JFK Assassination

Following the murder of John F. Kennedy, over 300 people, closely connected to the assassination in some way, died very unnatural deaths. Popular news columist and TV personality, Dorothy Kilgallen and the accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald were among the 300+ people who made up the most statistically rare “accidental deaths” in the history of a single criminal event. For the record, Kilgallen’s death was officially catalogued an alcohol-barbituate suicide. She was in the middle of writing a tell-all about the JFK assassination which included a trip to Dallas to interview Lee Harvey Oswald as she was, in her words, set to “blow the lid off of the Kennedy Assassination”.

In the very early days following the Vegas massacre, the missing and dead eyewitnesses are beginning to accumulate in a manner similar to the Kennedy assassination.

Where of Where Is Jose Campos? Where oh Where Could He Be?

Campos was due to appear on Fox News with Sean Hannity a couple of nights ago, which was 1 of 5 TV interviews he was scheduled for, but then mysteriously failed to show up for with notice. Darin Damme popularized the discovery emerged shortly after it was revealed that Campos was shot before the Vegas massacre has started, and not after as the official FBI narrative had claimed.

Darin Damme, talk show host for Arizona’s largest New/Talk station, 92.3 FM has been devoting major portions of his popular radio show to demonstrate the lies and subsequent cover-up connected to the official narrative related to the Vegas mass murder. Darin has donated significant portions of his show in exposing the cover up. As he likes to say, “This is the most important story” as he details how the official narrative is being changed to fit the emerging facts. Whether Darin Damme says it or not, his audience is being led to the inescapable conclusion that there so much more to this event than is being portrayed in the mainstream media and by the ever-changing law enforcement accounts.

Read More @ TheCommonSenseShow.com

WORLD’S LARGEST OIL COMPANIES: Deep Trouble As Profits Vaporize While Debts Skyrocket

by Steve St. Angelo, SRSrocco:

The world’s largest oil companies are in serious trouble as their balance sheets deteriorate from higher costs, falling profits and skyrocketing debt.  The glory days of the highly profitable global oil companies have come to an end.  All that remains now is a mere shadow of the once mighty oil industry that will be forced to continue cannibalizing itself to produce the last bit of valuable oil.

I realize my extremely unfavorable opinion of the world’s oil industry runs counter to many mainstream energy analysts, however, their belief that business, as usual, will continue for decades, is entirely unfounded.  Why?  Because, they do not understand the ramifications of the Falling EROI – Energy Returned On Invested, and its impact on the global economy.

For example, Chevron was able to make considerable profits in 1997 when the oil price was $19 a barrel.  However, the company suffered a loss in 2016 when the price was more than double at $44 last year.  And, it’s even worse than that if we compare the company’s profit to total revenues.  Chevron enjoyed a $3.2 billion net income profit on revenues of $42 billion in 1997 versus a $497 million loss on total sales of $114 billion in 2016.  Even though Chevron’s revenues nearly tripled in twenty years, its profit was decimated by the falling EROI.

Unfortunately, energy analysts, who are clueless to the amount of destruction taking place in the U.S. and global oil industry by the falling EROI, continue to mislead a public that is totally unprepared for what is coming.  To provide a more realistic view of the disintegrating energy industry, I will provide data from seven of the largest oil companies in the world.

The World’s Major Oil Companies Debt Explode Since The 2008 Financial Crisis

To save the world from falling into total collapse during the 2008 financial crisis, the Fed and Central Banks embarked on the most massive money printing scheme in history.  One side-effect of the massive money printing (and the purchasing of assets) by the central banks, was that it pushed the price of oil to a record $100+ a barrel for more than three years.  While the large oil companies reported handsome profits due to the high oil price, many of them spent a great deal of capital to produce this oil.

For instance, the seven top global oil companies that I focused on made a combined $213 billion in cash from operations in 2013. However, they also forked out $230 billion in capital expenditures.  Thus, the net free cash flow from these major oil companies was a negative $17 billion… and that doesn’t include the $44 billion they paid in dividends to their shareholders in 2013.  Even though the price of oil was $109 in 2013; these seven oil companies added $45 billion to their long-term debt:

As we can see, the total amount of long-term debt in the group (Petrobras, Shell, BP, Total, Chevron, Exxon & Statoil) increased from $227 billion in 2012 to $272 billion in 2013.  Isn’t that ironic that the debt ($45 billion) rose nearly the same amount as the group’s dividend payouts ($44 billion)?  Of course, we can’t forget about the negative $17 billion in free cash flow in 2013, but here we see evidence that the top seven global oil companies were borrowing money even in 2013, at $109 a barrel oil, to pay their dividends.

Since the 2008 global economic and financial crisis, the top seven oil companies have seen their total combined debt explode four times, from $96 billion to $379 billion currently.  You would think with these energy companies enjoying a $100+ oil price for more than three years; they would be lowering their debt, not increasing it.  Regrettably, the cost for companies to replace reserves, produce oil and share profits with shareholders was more than the $110 oil price.

There lies the rub….

One of the disadvantages of skyrocketing debt is the rising amount of interest the company has to pay to service that debt.  If we look at the chart above, Brazil’s Petrobras is the clear winner in the group by adding the most debt.  Petrobras’s debt surged from $21 billion in 2008 to $109 billion last year.  As Petrobras added debt, it also had to pay out more to service that debt.  In just eight years, the annual interest amount Petrobras paid to service its debt increased from $793 million in 2008 to $6 billion last year.  Sadly, Petrobras’s rising interest payment has caused another nasty side-effect which cut dividend payouts to its shareholders to ZERO for the past two years.

Read More @ SRSrocco.com

Eyewitnesses Accounts Contradict Media’s LAS VEGAS Narrative! (VIDEO)

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by Bradlee Dean, The Sleuth Journal:

And the LORD said unto me, A conspiracy is found among the men of Judah, and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” (Jeremiah 11:9)

I have a couple questions for you to preface this week’s column.

Who is Leon Czolgosz? Who is Charles J. Guiteau?

The answer: Leon Czolgosz was President McKinley’s assassin.

And Charles J. Guiteau is President Garfield’s assassin.

Most people do not know who these men were because at the time, it was for the world to know the facts as to what took place concerning these assassinations.  These were not conspiracies.  They were simply two men who took things into their own hands and committed the act of murder (1 John 3:12).

There were no diversions, no media cover-ups. They were simple cases to solve, as it was reported through eyewitness accounts and easily solved.

Now, let me ask you who was John Wilkes Booth?

Most can speedily answer with “That’s easy, that was President Abraham Lincoln’s killer!”

The same with John F. Kennedy’s assassination, that Lee Harvey Oswald was responsible.

Year after year, new generations are raised up to believe, by the media and lies in textbooks, that John Wilkes Booth and Lee Harvey Oswald were solely responsible for the assassinations of these two presidents.  A Gallup poll, for what it’s worth, taken in the U.S., reveals that 61{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} of the American people still believe that the JFK assassination was a conspiracy while the establishment media is hard at work doing their best to keep the up and coming generation deceived into believing their contrived theories and covering for those who are committing the act of conspiracies.

CONSPIRACY, noun

  1. A combination of men for an evil purpose; an agreement between two or more persons, to commit some crime in concert; particularly, a combination to commit treason, or excite sedition or insurrection against the government.

P.S. In this country it is the American people that are the government! Read the preamble to the U.S. Constitution.

Reading of the Declaration of Independence!

As a matter of fact, you will find that for decades in this country, it has been the controlled media who has been demonizing and accusing those of being “conspiracy theorists” or just plain “crazy” when it comes to questioning the narrative that they attempt to set.

Below are Conspiracies that were sold by the controlled media as “conspiracy theories.”

  • The Dreyfus Affair
  • The Mafia
  • MK-ULTRA
  • Operation Mocking Bird

“Operation Mockingbird,” was a fully implemented CIA program to spread disinformation throughout American media.  CIA Director William Colby testified to the Church Committee that over 400 CIA agents were active in the U.S. media to control what was reported through American mainstream television, newspapers and magazines.

  • Manhattan Project
  • Asbestos
  • Watergate (Was about a pedophile cover-up in government)
  • The Tuskegee Syphilis Study
  • Operation Northwoods

In the early 1960s, American military leaders drafted plans to create public support for a war against Cuba, to oust Fidel Castro from power. The plans included committing acts of terrorism in U.S. cities, killing innocent people and U.S. soldiers, blowing up a U.S. ship, assassinating Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees, and hijacking planes. The plans were all approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, but were reportedly rejected by the civilian leadership, then kept secret for nearly 40 years.

Read More @ TheSleuthJournal.com

The Gold-Backed-Oil-Yuan Futures Contract Myth

by Koos Jansen, BullionStar:

On September 1, 2017, the Nikkei Asian Review published an article titled, “China sees new world order with oil benchmark backed by gold”, written by Damon Evans. Just below the headline in the introduction it states, “China is expected shortly to launch a crude oil futures contract priced in yuan and convertible into gold in what analysts say could be a game-changer for the industry”. Not long after the Nikkei piece was released ‘the story’ was widely copied in sensational analyses throughout the gold space. However, ‘the story’, as presented by Nikkei, doesn’t make sense at all. Allow me to share my 2 cents in addition to what I shared previously on the Daily Coin.

All the rumours and analyses on gold, oil and yuan that are making rounds now in the blogosphere are based on the Nikkei article. But the Nikkei article itself contains zero official sources. Basically, the whole story has been invented by Damon Evans. So, let’s start addressing the claims made in the Nikkei piece.

It’s true that the Shanghai Futures Exchange (SHFE) – not to be confused with the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) – has recently set up a subsidiary called the Shanghai International Energy Exchange (INE), for foreign enterprises to trade a new oil futures contract denominated in yuan which is expected to be launched later this year (product symbol: SC). Specifications of the contract can be read here. In all official sources, though, there is no mention of gold. Officially this contract is not “convertible into gold”.

The only vague connection I could find is that the INE “will accept foreign exchange as … trading margin”. If this includes gold – which technically is not foreign exchange – we will see. In any case, even if gold will be used as trading margin that doesn’t mean the contract is “backed by gold”.

The Nikkei headline clearly reads “China sees new world order with oil benchmark backed by gold”. In this context, the word “backed” for most readers will refer to a fixed parity. In the past, for example, there was a fixed parity between gold and the US dollar; this meant the dollar was backed by gold through the US Treasury; dollars could be redeemed for gold at a fixed price and vice versa. In case of the Nikkei story it would imply a fixed parity between yuan, or oil (this is not clear), and gold. But how would China back anything with gold? Would China’s central bank (the PBOC) defend a fixed price of gold in yuan? And it would do so through an oil futures contract? Impossible.

Quickly ‘the story’ by Nikkei transformed through the blogosphere where analysts suggested the gold in SGE vaults would back the yuan. The problem with this theory is that gold in SGE vaults, (i) isn’t owned by the Chinese government, and (ii) isn’t allowed to be exported from the Chinese domestic market (not very convenient for foreign oil producers). Then analysts suggested the gold in vaults of the Shanghai International Gold Exchange (SGEI) would do the job. But SGEI gold, (i) isn’t owned by the Chinese government either, and (ii) can only have been sourced in the international gold market, payed for with US dollars. So much for the oil-gold trade circumventing US dollars as presented by Nikkei.

Now, let’s zoom in on the logic behind the phrase “crude oil futures contract priced in yuan and convertible into gold”. Futures contracts are an agreement between two traders about the future price of i.e. a commodity (usually denominated in a currency, in the case of the INE contract yuan). There can be no third asset, commodity or currency involved in a futures contract. It cannot be that upon physical delivery of SC – when oil is exchanged for yuan – one of the two traders will say, “you know what, I don’t want yuan (or oil), I want gold”. And, needless to say, the Chinese government will not mingle in the futures trade. The PBOC will not jump in when a SC short or long demands gold. Again, the new INE oil futures contract denominated in yuan will have nothing to do with gold.

What is possible is that when a SC short delivers oil in exchange for yuan, he is then free to buy gold with the proceeds. One can do so directly on the SGEI where three physical gold products denominated in yuan are listed.

Though, be reminded, currently no oil producer is prohibited from buying gold (or something else for that matter) when paid in US dollars. That’s actually the very function of money. Money is used, since ancient times, for what is called indirect exchange. Stuff is sold for money, and with that money all other stuff can be bought. Gold can be bought with the proceeds from oil sales since … forever. An oil futures contract will not suddenly change all that. In the Nikkei piece one analysts was quoted saying:

It’s a transfer of holding their assets in black liquid to yellow metal. It’s a strategic move swapping oil for gold, rather than for U.S. Treasuries, which can be printed out of thin air.

But oil producers are free to buy gold with their moneys (yuan or dollars) with or without the new futures contract. The INE contract will not remove an obligation i.e. for Kuwait to invest in U.S. Treasuries. So, what will change when this new oil-yuan futures contract is launched?

Also bear in mind that futures are hardly ever physically delivered. Futures are used for hedging and speculation. In general, commodities are physically traded in the spot market. Oil for dollars, chocolate for Swiss francs, Dutch cheese for euros, etcetera. Futures contracts are not necessarily needed to sell oil for yuan. Nikkei wrote:

China’s move will allow exporters such as Russia and Iran to circumvent U.S. sanctions by trading in yuan.

But effectively, Venezuela, Russia and Iran can sell their oil to China in exchange for yuan as of this very moment, before the oil-yuan futures contract is live. They also could have done so three years ago. So, in my very humble opinion the new INE contract will not be the instant game changer everybody is talking about.

Perhaps also noteworthy, one commentator on the Nikkei story wrote:

China just announced that any oil-exporter that accepts yuan for oil can convert the oil to gold on the Shanghai Gold Exchange and hedge the hard currency value of the gold on the Shanghai Futures Exchange.

My comments on this paragraph:

  1. As shown above China hasn’t announced anything but an oil-yuan futures contract. Gold has nothing to do with it.
  2. Yuan can technically be spend on gold at the SGE, but gold in the Chinese domestic market (SGE system) is not allowed to be exported. Gold from the SGEI is allowed to be exported but is bought in the international market via yuan with US dollars.
  3. Foreign enterprises, like oil producers, cannot hedge gold on the Shanghai Futures Exchange. The SHFE is not open for international customers. There’s only a spot deferred product listed on the SGE, which is comparable to a futures contract, through which foreign enterprises can hedge gold in yuan. But why would oil producers buy gold and subsequently hedge the metal in yuan. Their end position would be merely exposure to the price of yuan. Why then, not buy a yuan denominated bond with an interest rate? Or hold gold without the hedge?

Prior to publication of the Nikkei article in question I got an email from Evans. He asked me if “China will tie a gold guarantee to the new oil contract?”. I replied, “No. I would be surprised if they did that”. But my quote wasn’t selected for the final publication. The piece only quoted analysts singing the same song. In my view, that’s not what sound journalism is about. First of all Evans didn’t use any official sources, and second he picked analysts that confirmed his bias.

Aside from all the inaccuracies in the Nikkei article, what stands out for me is that indeed a large number of countries is willing to trade oil in yuan and the new INE futures contract is important for this development as it allows oil producers and users to hedge directly in renminbi. And so the INE contract will support oil for yuan trading. That’s what the article should have focussed on.

Although not much has happened yet*, it’s clear Asia wants to get rid of the petrodollar, and it will be interesting to see how this initiative develops.

Read More @ BullionStar.com

OPERATION FREEDOM – Sunday, October 15, 2017: Greg Hunter and Dane Wigington

by Dave Janda, Dave Janda:

Topics Discussed: Climate Change, Global Warming, Drug Cartels, Money Laundering, Geo-Engineering, Globalist Syndicate, Domestic terrorists, Trump Care, ObamaCare, Manipulation of financial markets, Benghazi, New World Order Syndicate, Obama Care, Free Market Health Reform, Putin, The Ukraine, ISIS, Syria, The Constitution, Natural resources, Reserve currency, Corruption, gold, silver, Global Elite, International Banking Cabal, debt, Federal Reserve, Too Big To Fail Banks, Crony Capitalism, Debt Ceiling, Financial implosion, Recession, Economic Depression, Freedom, Liberty  

Click HERE for Greg Hunter

Click HERE for Dane Wigington

Read More @ DaveJanda.com

Kobe Steel Scandal Could Rattle US Nuclear Industry

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by Leonard Hyman and Willian Tilles, Wolf Street:

Second major scandal involving a steel supplier of reactor components.

Japan’s Kobe Steel has joined a rather unfortunate “club”. That club’s membership includes those Japanese companies recently racked by scandal and mismanagement.

Kobe’s management admitted that its employees faked quality inspection reports on its steel and other metal products used domestically in automobiles, bullet trains and nuclear power stations. So far, corporate announcements have been vague, offering little clarity about the duration of the quality control lapses or, more important, the type of components involved.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501.T) just announced that it replaced a Kobe-made piece of equipment, offering no other details. Kobe, however, is a major producer of nuclear power plants components. Even if quality control lapses did not extend to those operations, the onus may be on Kobe to prove its innocence.

So what should we expect? If these QA/QC lapses began recently, it should have little or no effect on most of the nuclear assets in the United States. Most of them were built decades ago.

Plants under construction, however, or those recently completed are another matter. In the last period of nuclear new build in the U.S. (basically the 1970s), a relatively muscular Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) took its safety responsibilities seriously, and woe to the builder that thought the rules excessive.

Unfortunately, a raging period of inflation only added to the nuclear builder’s troubles. Toward the end of the decade, the only appropriate choice for some would have been between cigarette or blindfold. Those safety requirements added to plant cost. And in an attitude that today would seem remarkable, that fact didn’t deter the NRC’s administrators.

If a nuclear power plant has to shut down due to concerns regarding the integrity of Kobe’s products, it’s needless to say it could get expensive. A typical 1,000 MW nuclear facility operating at full capacity can generate annual revenues of between $500 million and $1 billion.

Unlike a coal or natural gas fired power plant, shutting a nuclear plant down does little to reduce costs. Most nuclear costs are fixed, that is, they are spent before the thing is even turned on. Therefore, the plant’s owner will likely try to foist extraordinary expenses like these onto consumers (this is not possible in competitive markets). Or, power plant owners can stand on their rights and demand compensation from Kobe. While perhaps fruitful, it’s doubtful this process would be brief.

Thus, investors in nuclear power have reason for some near-term heightened sense of concern. Questions will be asked as to the provenance of equipment and components. Certain corporations especially under duress might adopt “truth on the installment plan” policies. All the negative news is eventually disclosed—but only after PR efforts downplay the likelihood of meaningful corporate impact.

What’s an investor to do? At this stage, with so little information available, we can’t judge whether Kobe’s latest news will make any financial difference to the nuclear industry.

Read More @ WolfStreet.com

Gold Rush: Russia Stockpiling Bullion Like There’s no Tomorrow

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from Sputnik News:

The Central Bank of Russia has recently been buying bullion at an unprecedented pace. According to Argentine financial expert Gabriel Rubinstein, this policy is aimed at protecting the Russian economy in the event of crisis situations, including against dollar-related “manipulations” by the US.

“Countries stockpile gold for strategic and defensive reasons; for instance, in caserelations between nations are damaged and their currencies lose their value,” Gabriel Rubinstein, a financial consultant and former representative of the Argentine Central Bank, told Sputnik Mundo.

If there is such a situation, according to the expert, gold reserves would be the basis for a new currency or other valuable assets in the future.

“Gold, this eternal financial resource, has a real value if compared to other financial assets. The Russian government believes that it’s better to have more gold resources than dollars. Hypothetically speaking, if Russia holds tons of US dollars and the US wanted to damage its economy, this would be possible through currency manipulations,” Rubinstein said, adding that gold guarantees against such a scenario.

The Russian Central Bank has significantly increased the pace of its gold purchases. In the period between January and September 2017, the regulator bought 4.2 million troy ounces of the precious metal worth over $5 billion, 15 percent more than in the same period last year.

As of October 1, the Russian Central Bank holds $73.6 billion in gold reserves, compared with $65.5 billion a year ago, according to its data.

Russia increased its purchases of bullion after sanctions were imposed by the United States and the European Union following the 2014 referendum in Crimea and the beginning of a military conflict in eastern Ukraine. Since then, according to the World Gold Council, the Russian Central Bank has been adding some 100 tons to its gold reserves each six months, more than any other central bank in the world.

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