Tuesday, July 16, 2019

10 Charts that Show Why Gold Is Undervalued Right Now

by Frank Holmes, GoldSeek:

With the year quickly coming to a close, it might be time to start thinking about rebalancing the gold holdings in your portfolio. That includes bullion, jewelry, gold stocks and well-managed gold funds—all of which I recommend giving a collective 10 percent weighting. Because it’s been such a strong year for stocks—they’ve advanced more than 20 percent as of today—it’s likely that most investors will need to add to their gold exposure to meet that 10 percent weighting as we head into 2018.

Some investors might wonder why they need gold in their portfolios right now. The stock market is still chugging along, and the just-passed tax reform bill is likely to help ratchet up share prices even more. Cryptocurrencies have been hogging the spotlight lately, especially after bitcoin tumbled nearly 30 percent last Friday morning.

While I’m on the subject, inflows into cryptocurrencies have totaled more than $500 billion this year alone. To put that in perspective, the total sum of global equity mutual fund and ETF inflows were around $411 billion as of November 29. What’s more, cryptocurrencies are now doing as much daily trading as the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), according toBusiness Insider. 

Just think on that. Something is happening here that cannot be ignored or dismissed.

But back to gold. It’s important to remember that the precious metal has historically shared a low-to-negative correlation with many traditional assets such as cash, Treasuries and stocks, both domestic and international. This makes it, I believe, an appealing diversifier in the event of a correction in the capital and forex markets.

Need more reasons to add to your gold holdings? Below are 10 charts that show why the yellow metal is undervalued right now:

1. The gold price has crushed the market so far this century.

Investors are invariably surprised to see this chart whenever I show it at conferences. Believe it or not, since 2000, the gold price has beaten the S&P 500 Index, which has undergone two 40 percent corrections so far this century.

2. Compared to stocks, gold looks like a bargain.

As of this month, the gold-to-S&P 500 ratio is at its lowest point in 10 years. For mean reversion to occur, either the gold price needs to appreciate or share prices need to fall. Either way, consider this a once-in-a-decade opportunity.

3. Exploration budgets keep getting slashed.

One of the reasons why gold is so highly valued is for its scarcity. There’s a possibility it could get even scarcer as explorers continue to trim exploration budgets and uncover fewer and fewer large deposits. The time between initial discovery and day one of production is also expanding. This has led many experts in the field to wonder if we’ve finally reached “peak gold.”

Read More @ GoldSeek.com

Is One Reason Why the Status Quo Disdains Bitcoin Is the “Wrong People Are Getting Rich”?

by Charles Hugh Smith, Of Two Minds:

The wrong people–rebels, outsiders, nerds and techies– got on the cryptocurrency boat while their insider/rentier “betters” blew it and are now raging bitterly onshore.

The psychology of money, wealth and speculative manias is endlessly fascinating. Most of what’s written on these subjects focus on the process of building wealth as if it were a quasi-science rather than a psychologically driven process. Only speculative manias attract a psychology-based analysis, usually characterized as some variant of the madness of the herd running off the cliff en masse.

But money and wealth are nothing but more sedate reflections of the same dynamics that drive speculative manias. Much has been written about cognitive biases and thinking fast and slow, but these explorations do not exhaust the psychology underpinning money, wealth and speculative manias.

Few things have unleashed the Monster Id of wealth and money quite like bitcoin and the cryptocurrencies. Compare the speculative manias of the dot-com era (1995 – 2000) and the housing bubble (2002 – 2007) with the crypto-mania: in the first two manias, the status quo embraced the mania as rational and justified: the Internet would continue growing for decades, housing never goes down, etc.

But the status quo has not embraced cryptocurrencies with the same ardor–why? Instead of endless justifications for valuations, the status quo is filled with reports that 97% of all economists view bitcoin as a bubble, and endless articles decrying the bitcoin bubble as a fools game that will deservedly burst, and soon.

Why did the status quo embrace irrationally exuberant bubbles in the 1990s and 2000s, but views the exuberance of cryptocurrencies with disdain? I think this is a fruitful topic to explore, largely because nobody seems to be asking this question.

Here are my suppositions:

1. The status quo reviles cryptocurrencies because the wrong people are getting rich.

2. The status quo reviles cryptocurrencies because the usual insiders (Wall Street and its politico leeches) didn’t get on board early, and they’re deeply offended that they missed the boat.

3. Until the advent of bitcoin futures trading, the usual insiders had no means to skim profits from the exuberance.

To me, these dynamics go a long way in explaining the 97% of the status quo’s visible loathing of bitcoin and the cryptocurrencies.

In other words: why embrace some manias but not all manias? Answer: some manias make the usual insiders filthy rich, others don’t. The dot-com mania generated billions of dollars in profits for Wall Street and the rest of the financier-politico leeches (i.e. the rentier class) via IPOs (initial public offerings), insider deals and vast fees generated by trading the mania with other peoples’ money.

The housing bubble generated billions of dollars in profits for Wall Street via the issuance of mortgage-backed securities (MBS), CDOs and other exotic financial instruments based on mortgages and related securities, and realtors (and the rest of the housing industry) banked billions in commissions, fees and other skims.

In both cases, Average Joe and Jane reckoned the manias were their ticket to untold wealth. A relative few Average Joes and Janes did strike it rich, usually by being early employees of companies that went public, and a few others managed the impossible, i.e. buying low and selling high and then exiting the casino with their winnings.

But the vast majority of the Average Joes and Janes were fodder for the chipping machines of Wall Street and the FIRE (finance, insurance, real estate) insiders and elites. Far more people lost money in the period between 1997 and 2003 than won big and kept their winnings. Millions of people gambled on the housing bubble expanding forever and lost everything.

Now compare that to the cryptocurrency mania: Wall Street and the rest of the financier-politico leeches (the rentier class) have virtually no insider skims in the cryptocurrencies–is it any wonder they hate bitcoin with a passion that correlates to their inability to rake in billions of low-risk fees from the mania?

Read More @ OfTwoMinds.com

Frenzied Shopping Season, Record Hangover

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by Wolf Richter, Wolf Street:

And what happens to the returned goods?

It was, by all accounts, an exciting shopping season, particularly for e-commerce. I figured that out very quickly when things we’d ordered in early December took days longer than normal to arrive. The tracking info showed various issues, including packages getting hung up for days in some warehouse, apparently waiting for the next available spot on a truck.

So here’s the frenzied party.

Now we got the first set of numbers. Mastercard SpendingPulse reported that holiday shopping — not including automotive — from November 1 through December 24 across all payment types, including cash and check, rose 4.9% from the same period a year ago, the largest year-over-year increase since 2011. Folks spent over $800 billion this shopping season, the most ever.

Online sales soared a breath-taking 18.1% year-over-year, “boosted by a late season rally,” the report said. It ate the lion’s share of the increase.

“Overall, this year was a big win for retail,” the report said, which based the results on data from the Mastercard payment network and survey-based estimates for other payment types. A special credit went to those retailers “who tried new strategies to engage holiday shoppers.”

But now comes the record hangover.

Consumers will return about $90 billion in goods purchased during this holiday season, according to estimates by Optoro, which specializes in the business of return shipments. For the entire year, about $380 billion of goods will be returned.

Of the returns following the holiday shopping party, 40% will happen during return-mayhem from December 26 through December 31, and 51% will happen in January, according to Optoro.

Some more return nuggets:

  • FedEx’s head of marketing, Raj Subramaniam, told investors last week that about 15% of the goods bought online will be returned, with the return rate for apparel being about 30%.
  • The National Retail Federation estimates that 15% to 30% of goods bought online will be returned.
  • UPS said that in the first full week of January 2017, 5.8 million packages were returned to retailers. The first full week in January 2018 will likely beat that number.

“Being able to return is now a competitive tool,” Bruce Cohen, head of strategy and private equity for retail and consumer products at consulting firm Kurt Salmon, told CNBC. “If it’s a pain for customers to return items, they will go elsewhere.”

For online shoppers, there are drop-off points scattered around, or they can ship it back, using the preprinted return label that came in the box, with the retailer usually offering to pick up the shipping costs. Brick-and-mortar shoppers get to cool their heels in line at the returns counter.

And what happens to the returned goods?

  • Only about half of returned goods are put back on the shelves, according to Optoro, cited by CNBC.
  • About a quarter of returned goods are sent back to the manufacturer, with the retailer thus sloughing off the problem.
  • Other returns are sold, often for pennies on the dollar, to secondary retailers, discounters, and liquidators.
  • And about 5 billion pounds of returned goods get trashed because it’s too expensive for retailers to assess their condition and repackage them, or because they’re damaged.

These returns – and generous return policies that engender them – are very costly for retailers and consistently rank among their top concerns. Many online vendors offer free shipping for returns, which adds to the costs.

Read More @ WolfStreet.com

Are The Banksters Creating Their Own Cryptocurrency Called ‘Utility Settlement Coin’?

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by Michael Snyder, The Economic Collapse Blog:

Independently-controlled cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin may or may not survive in the long run, but blockchain technology is definitely here to stay.  This technology has revolutionized how digital financial transactions are conducted, and it was only a matter of time before the big boys began to adopt it.  Previously, I have written about how the Washington Post is hyping something known as ‘Fedcoin’, but Fedcoin does not yet exist.  However, a digital currency that uses blockchain technology that is called ‘Utility Settlement Coin’ is actually very real, and it is currently being jointly developed by four of the largest banking giants on the entire planet.  The following was recently reported by Wolf Richter

UBS, BNY Mellon, Deutsche Bank, Santander, the market operator ICAP, and the startup Clearmatics formed an alliance in 2016 to explore the use of digital currency between financial institutions and central banks, using blockchain.

The ultimate goal of the project is to create a digital currency known as Utility Settlement Coin (USC), which will facilitate payment and settlement for institutional financial markets.

I decided that I had to know more about Utility Settlement Coin, and so I decided to go to the source.

This is what the official Deutsche Bank website says about Utility Settlement Coin…

USC is an asset-backed digital cash instrument implemented on distributed ledger technology for use within global institutional financial markets. USC is a series of cash assets, with a version for each of the major currencies (USD, EUR, GBP, CHF, etc.) and USC is convertible at parity with a bank deposit in the corresponding currency. USC is fully backed by cash assets held at a central bank. Spending a USC will be spending its paired real-world currency.

UBS and Clearmatics launched the concept in September 2015 to validate the potential benefits of USC for capital efficiency, settlement and systemic risk reduction in global financial markets. The project was initially incubated as part of the UBS Crypto 2.0 Pathfinder Program, UBS’s initiative for research and experimentation on blockchain.

This could ultimately turn out to be a complete and total gamechanger.  UBS, BNY Mellon, Deutsche Bank and Santander are four of the biggest banks in the western world, and the fact that they are working on this project together is a sign that they are very serious about succeeding.

Will the general public still be willing to pay a huge premium for independently-controlled cryptocurrencies once the banksters start coming out with their own versions?

The cryptocurrency revolution is still in the very early stages, and nobody is exactly sure how it will end, but without a doubt the banksters will be a major player in this drama.  If you doubt this, just consider what one of the top executives at UBS is saying about Utility Settlement Coin

“Digital cash is a core component of a future financial market fabric based on blockchain technologies,” said Hyder Jaffrey, Head of Strategic Investment & FinTech Innovation at UBS Investment Bank. “There are several digital cash models being explored across the Street. The Utility Settlement Coin is focused on facilitating a new model for digital central bank cash.

Digital central bank cash?

Read More @ TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com

GOLD UP $5.05 RISING $1288.00/SILVER UP 17 CENTS UP TO $16.71

by Harvey Organ, Harvey Organ Blog:

GOLD EFP’S TRANSFER TO LONDON 2056 CONTRACTS/SILVER TRANSFERS; 840 CONTRACTS/MANHATTAN APARTMENT PRICES CRASHING DUE TO NEW TAX LAW/MORE SWAMP STORIES

GOLD: $1288.00 up $5.05

Silver: $16.71 up 17 cents

Closing access prices:

Gold $1288.50

silver: $16.73

For comex gold:

DECEMBER/

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR DECEMBER CONTRACT: 33 NOTICE(S) FOR 3300 OZ.

TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR: 9056 FOR 905,600 OZ (28.30 TONNES),

For silver:

DECEMBER

8 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR

40,000 OZ/

Total number of notices filed so far this month: 6403 for 32,015,000 oz

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Bitcoin: BID $15,775/OFFER $15,900 up $98 (morning)

BITCOIN : BID $14,994/OFFER $15,099 /DOWN $709 CLOSING

 

 

end

 JUST TO LET YOU KNOW THAT OTC OPTIONS EXPIRE THIS FRIDAY WHICH ALSO CORRESPONDS TO FIRST DAY NOTICE FOR THE JANUARY CONTRACT FOR BOTH GOLD AND SILVER.  JANUARY IS A POOR DELIVERY MONTH FOR BOTH OF OUR METALS AND JANUARY IS ALSO NON ACTIVE FOR BOTH.

Let us have a look at the data for today

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In silver, the total open interest SURPRISINGLY FELL BY A CONSIDERABLE 1462 contracts from 201,783 FALLING TO 200,321 DESPITE YESTERDAY’S GOOD 17 CENT RISE IN SILVER PRICING. WE  HAD SOME COMEX LIQUIDATION AND WITHOUT A DOUBT WE MUST HAVE HAD SOME BANK SHORT- COVERING. HOWEVER, WE WERE AGAIN NOTIFIED THAT WE HAD ANOTHER FAIR SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: A RESPECTABLE 840 EFP’S FOR MARCH (AND ZERO FOR DEC AND OTHER MONTHS) AND THUS TOTAL ISSUANCE OF 840 CONTRACTS. HOWEVER THE MOVEMENT ACROSS TO LONDON IS NOT AS SEVERE AS IN GOLD AS THERE SEEMS TO BE A MAJOR PLAYER TAKING ON THE BANKS AT THE COMEX. STILL, WITH THE TRANSFER OF 840 CONTRACTS, WHAT THE CME IS STATING IS THAT THERE IS NO SILVER (OR GOLD) TO BE DELIVERED UPON AT THE COMEX AS THEY MUST EXPORT THEIR OBLIGATION TO LONDON. YESTERDAY WITNESSED 1760 EFP’S FOR SILVER ISSUED. ALSO KEEP IN MIND THAT THERE CAN BE A DELAY OF 24 HRS IN THE ISSUING OF EFP’S. I BELIEVE THAT WE MUST HAVE HAD SOME BANKER SHORT COVERING

ACCUMULATION FOR EFP’S/SILVER/ STARTING FROM FIRST DAY NOTICE/FOR MONTH OF DECEMBER:

45,351 CONTRACTS (FOR 18 TRADING DAYS TOTAL 45,351 CONTRACTS OR 226.755 MILLION OZ: AVERAGE PER DAY: 2,550 CONTRACTS OR 12.750 MILLION OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA OF THE SIZE OF “PHYSICAL” TRANSFERRED TO LONDON: 222.755 MILLION OZ/700 MILLION OZ (EX CHINA EX RUSSIA) = 31.8% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL SILVER PRODUCTION

RESULT: A CONSIDERABLE SIZED LOSS IN OI COMEX DESPITE THE GOOD 18 CENT RISE IN SILVER PRICE WHICH INDICATES SOME BANKER SHORT-COVERING. WE HAD SOME COMEX SILVER LIQUIDATION . WE ALSO HAD A FAIR SIZED SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 840 CONTRACTS WHICH EXITED OUT OF THE SILVER COMEX AND TRANSFERRED THEIR OI TO LONDON AS FORWARDS: FROM THE CME DATA 840 EFP’S WERE ISSUED TODAY (FOR MARCH EFP’S) FOR A DELIVERABLE CONTRACT OVER IN LONDON WITH A FIAT BONUS. WE REALLY LOST 582 OI CONTRACTS i.e. 840 open interest contracts headed for London (EFP’s) TOGETHER WITH A DECREASE OF 1462 OI COMEX CONTRACTS. AND ALL OF THIS HAPPENED WITH THE RISE IN PRICE OF SILVER BY 18 CENTS AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $16.54WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING. YET WE STILL HAVE A MASSIVE AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX.

In ounces AT THE COMEX, the OI is still represented by just OVER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 1.001 BILLION TO BE EXACT or 143% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).

FOR THE NEW FRONT DECEMBER MONTH/ THEY FILED: 8 NOTICE(S) FOR 40,000 OZ OF SILVER

In gold, the open interest ROSE BY A SMALL SIZED 313 CONTRACTS UP TO 456,470 DESPITE THE GOOD SIZED RISE IN PRICE OF GOLD WITH YESTERDAY’S TRADING ($7.10). HOWEVER, THE TOTAL NUMBER OF GOLD EFP’S ISSUED YESTERDAY FOR TODAY TOTALED  2056 CONTRACTS OF WHICH THE MONTH OF DECEMBER SAW 0 CONTRACTS AND FEB SAW THE ISSUANCE OF 2056 CONTRACTS. The new OI for the gold complex rests at 456,470. DEMAND FOR GOLD INTENSIFIES GREATLY AS WE CONTINUE TO WITNESS A HUGE NUMBER OF EFP TRANSFERS TOGETHER WITH THE MASSIVE AMOUNT OF GOLD OUNCES STANDING FOR DECEMBER. EVEN THOUGH THE BANKERS ISSUED THESE MONSTROUS EFPS, THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH THE BANKERS TO SUPPLY METAL BUT IT TRANSFERS THE RISK TO A LONDON BANKER OBLIGATION AND NOT A NEW YORK COMEX OBLIGATION. LONGS RECEIVE A FIAT BONUS TOGETHER WITH A LONG LONDON FORWARD. THUS, BY THESE ACTIONS, THE BANKERS AT THE COMEX HAVE JUST STATED THAT THEY HAVE NO APPRECIABLE METAL!! THIS IS A MASSIVE FRAUD: THEY CANNOT SUPPLY ANY METAL TO OUR COMEX LONGS BUT THEY ARE QUITE WILLING TO SUPPLY MASSIVE NON BACKED GOLD (AND SILVER) PAPER KNOWING THAT THEY HAVE NO METAL TO SATISFY OUR LONGS. LONDON IS NOW SEVERELY BACKWARD IN BOTH GOLD AND SILVER AND WE ARE WITNESSING DELAYS IN ACTUAL DELIVERIES. IN ESSENCE WE HAVE A GOOD GAIN OF 2369 OI CONTRACTS: 313 OI CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX AND A GOOD SIZED 2056 OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON.

YESTERDAY, WE HAD 9906 EFP’S ISSUED.

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S/ GOLD(EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF DECEMBER STARTING WITH FIRST DAY NOTICE: 203,067 CONTRACTS OR 20.3067 MILLION OZ OR 631.41 TONNES(18 TRADING DAYS AND THUS AVERAGING: 11,280 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY OR 1.1271 MILLION OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE AMOUNT OF “PHYSICAL’ TRANSFERRED: SO FAR 671 TONNES/2200 TONNES ) = 30.50% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION OF GOLD. THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE AND EXPLAINS FULLY THE FRAUD!!

Result: A SMALL SIZED INCREASE IN OI DESPITE THE GOOD SIZED RISE IN PRICE IN GOLD TRADING ON YESTERDAY ($7.10). WE HAD A GOOD SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONG TRANSFERRING TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 2056. THERE OBVIOUSLY DOES NOT SEEM TO BE MUCH PHYSICAL GOLD AT THE COMEX AND YET WE REACHED THE HUGE DELIVERY MONTH OF DECEMBER. I GUESS IT EXPLAINS THE HUGE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S…THERE IS HARDLY ANY GOLD PRESENT AT THE GOLD COMEX FOR DELIVERY PURPOSES. IF YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE 2056 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED, WE HAD A NET GAIN IN OPEN INTEREST OF 2369 contracts:

2056 CONTRACTS MOVE TO LONDON AND  313 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX. (in tonnes, the gain in total oi equates to 11.7 TONNES)

we had: 33 notice(s) filed upon for 3300 oz of gold.

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With respect to our two criminal funds, the GLD and the SLV:

GLD:

Today, NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD

 

Inventory rests tonight: 837.50 tonnes.

SLV/

THIS MAKES A LOT OF SENSE: SILVER UP 17 CENTS AGAIN TODAY:

ANOTHER CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 802,000 OZ

INVENTORY RESTS AT 324.710 MILLION OZ/

end

First, here is an outline of what will be discussed tonight:

1. Today, we had the open interest in silver FELL BY A CONSIDERABLE SIZED 1462 contracts from 201,783 DOWN TO 200,321 (AND now A LITTLE FURTHER FROM THE NEW COMEX RECORD SET ON FRIDAY/APRIL 21/2017 AT 234,787) DESPITE THE GOOD SIZED RISE IN PRICE OF SILVER TO THE TUNE OF 17 CENTS ON YESTERDAY . HOWEVER,OUR BANKERS USED THEIR EMERGENCY PROCEDURE TO ISSUE ANOTHER 840 PRIVATE EFP’S FOR MARCH (WE DO NOT GET A LOOK AT THE
SE CONTRACTS AS IT IS PRIVATE BUT THE CFTC DOES AUDIT THEM). EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON. WE HAD ZERO COMEX SILVER COMEX LIQUIDATION. BUT, IF WE TAKE THE OI LOSS AT THE COMEX OF 1462 CONTRACTS TO THE 840 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S WE OBTAIN A LOSS OF 582 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS, AS WE MUST HAVE HAD SOME BANKER SHORT COVERING. WE STILL HAVE A HUGE AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES THAT ARE STANDING FOR METAL IN DECEMBER (SEE BELOW). THE NET LOSS TODAY IN OZ: 2.910 MILLION OZ!!!

RESULT: A SMALL SIZED DECREASE IN SILVER OI AT THE COMEX DESPITE THE GOOD SIZED RISE OF 18 CENTS IN PRICE (WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING). BUT WE ALSO HAD ANOTHER 840 EFP’S ISSUED TRANSFERRING COMEX LONGS OVER TO LONDON . TOGETHER WITH THE HUGE AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR DECEMBER, DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL SILVER INTENSIFIES

(report Harvey)

.

2.a) The Shanghai and London gold fix report

(Harvey)

2 b) Gold/silver trading overnight Europe, Goldcore

(Mark O’Byrne/zerohedge

and in NY: Bloomberg

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

Read More @ HarveyOrganBlog.com

The Feminist Threat To Women And Men

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by Paul Craig Roberts, Paul Craig Roberts:

Recently I read in CounterPunch two feminist rants against men. Not all men, just white heterosexual men. It is not always easy for a male of my generation to understand what feminists are saying, but I try. One seems to be saying that women live in a society that puts in power men who believe that violence against women is acceptable. Elevating her accusation to a fact, the writer says that women should not have to prove their case when they bring sexual harassment and assault charges, much less prove their “personal validity to even be making a case against a man.”

Is the writer saying that any irate woman should have the right to inpugn a man with an unchallenged charge? Do men and American society believe that violence against women is acceptable? I think not, unless the violence is committed by police. Americans seem to accept police violence against men, women, children, the handicapped, and the family dog.

The other writer says women have to sell themselves to live. She, despite a degree from a prestigeous university, went to work as a stripper, lap dancer, and apparently as a prostitute. She blames men for her poor decisions.

To be clear, I sympathize with anyone who finds themselves in the position that survival requires the sacrifice of their self-esteem. This happens to people everywhere all over the world. It is not an unique experience of women.

The woman who was a stripper writes that “what I learned in the strip club taught me more about the realities of being a woman in the 21st century than anything else has done.” It was there, she writes, that she learned that her handicaps in life were her intelligence and sharp tongue, and “that while men dictated the terms of my existence, women were complicit in maintaining systemic inequality.” Complicit women, she writes, sliced off parts of her soul just as did men.

What caught my attention was her reference to “being a woman in the 21st century.” How different that is from being a woman in the pre-feminist era that I experienced. It was feminists who denounced men for putting women on a pedestal and worshiping them. The inculcated respect that men showed women, doffing their hats in their presence, standing when women entered the room, opening doors for them, helping to seat them at tables, never using a four-letter word in their presence, and never ever striking a woman, an action that would isolate a man and deprive him of male friends.

In my day, no one struck a woman. It was beyond the pale.

It was the feminists who said that putting women on a pedestal was the male’s way of disempowering women. What ignorant nonsense. The most powerful members of my family were my grandmothers, mother, and aunts. Little decisions they left to the men. The big decisions they made.

Feminists said that women had to reject the pedestal and come down into the male world and prove their worth. It never occurred to feminists that women had more worth and more power on the pedestal. Feminists taught women to be promiscuous. Cosmopolitian magazine taught women to find fulfillment in orgasm with as many sexual partners as they can find. A number of years ago I wrote about young men telling me that they would like to get married, but every woman they knew had been in bed with all of their classmates. They said they would feel funny having their friends at their wedding who had sexual experience with their bride.

Corporations contributed to worsening the position of women that feminists initiated. In my day women were protected by families being in the same place. Any man who abused his wife would be confronted by his father and mother, his wife’s father and mother, his and her grandparents, his brothers and sisters, his wife’s brothers and sisters, his aunts and uncles, her aunts and uncles, and by the cousins of both.

Read More @ PaulCraigRoberts.org

ALL ABOARD! ISRAEL BUILDING NEW WESTERN WALL TRAIN STATION IN JERUSALEM TO BE NAMED AFTER PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP

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by Geoffrey Grider, Now The End Begins:

The decision was made by Transportation Minister Israel Katz, who said: “The Western Wall is the holiest place for the Jewish people, and I decided to name the train station that leads to it after President Trump – following his historic and brave decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel.”

A TRAIN STATION THAT WILL BE BUILT NEXT TO THE WESTERN WALL WILL BE NAMED AFTER US PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP.

EDITOR’S NOTE: During the 2016 Primaries, much was made of the ‘Trump Train‘ that not only ran over all 16 GOP candidates but ultimately derailed Crooked Hillary Clinton as well.  Now the ‘Trump Train‘ is going to have it’s own official station, and that station will be in the heart of Jerusalem at the Western Wall! Can things really get much stranger and more intense than this? Yes, and they will. If I had to guess, I don’t know who this will enrage more, the Palestinians or the Democrat party. But really, is there much of a difference? 

The decision was made by Transportation Minister Israel Katz, who said: “The Western Wall is the holiest place for the Jewish people, and I decided to name the train station that leads to it after President Trump – following his historic and brave decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel.”

Yediot Aharonot reported on Tuesday that Katz approved the construction plans for the train, that will include a 3 km. tunnel from the Umma (nation) station at the entrance to the city to the Cardo in the Jewish Quarter.

Katz said that he sees the project of extending the length of the railway from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem as the most important national project, and ordered officials in the Transportation Ministry to define it as a top priority mission.

Read More @ NowTheEndBegins.com

THE NEXT STEP IN CYBER WAR: GPS SPOOFING

by Joseph P. Farrell, Giza Death Star:

Remember those U.S. warships that were rammed by other ships this past year? The USS Fitzgerald and the USS John McCain incidents? For that matter, remember the US cruise missile strike on Syria, and that over half of the missiles missed their targets?  Well, there may be yet another explanation for the incidents: GPS spoofing, the latest step in cyber warfare capability, if this article shared by Ms. P is any indicator:

Ships fooled in GPS spoofing attack suggest Russian cyberweapon

What is intriguing here to note is that this attack – and it can only be called an attack – occurred within the same rough time frame as the McCain and Fitzgerald incidents:

eports of satellite navigation problems in the Black Sea suggest that Russia may be testing a new system for spoofing GPS, New Scientist has learned. This could be the first hint of a new form of electronic warfare available to everyone from rogue nation states to petty criminals.

On 22 June, the US Maritime Administration filed a seemingly bland incident report. The master of a ship off the Russian port of Novorossiysk had discovered his GPS put him in the wrong spot – more than 32 kilometres inland, at Gelendzhik Airport.

After checking the navigation equipment was working properly, the captain contacted other nearby ships. Their AIS traces – signals from the automatic identification system used to track vessels – placed them all at the same airport. At least 20 ships were affected.

While the incident is not yet confirmed, experts think this is the first documented use of GPS misdirection – a spoofing attack that has long been warned of but never been seen in the wild.

Until now, the biggest worry for GPS has been it can be jammed by masking the GPS satellite signal with noise. While this can cause chaos, it is also easy to detect. GPS receivers sound an alarm when they lose the signal due to jamming. Spoofing is more insidious: a false signal from a ground station simply confuses a satellite receiver. “Jamming just causes the receiver to die, spoofing causes the receiver to lie,” says consultant David Last, former president of the UK’s Royal Institute of Navigation.

Todd Humphreys, of the University of Texas at Austin, has been warning of the coming danger of GPS spoofing for many years. In 2013, he showed how a superyacht with state-of-the-art navigation could be lured off-course by GPS spoofing. “The receiver’s behaviour in the Black Sea incident was much like during the controlled attacks my team conducted,” says Humphreys.

And of course, as one might expect, this too is being blamed on Russia:

Humphreys thinks this is Russia experimenting with a new form of electronic warfare. Over the past year, GPS spoofing has been causing chaos for the receivers on phone apps in central Moscow to misbehave. The scale of the problem did not become apparent until people began trying to play Pokemon Go. The fake signal, which seems to centre on the Kremlin, relocates anyone nearby to Vnukovo Airport, 32 km away. This is probably for defensive reasons; many NATO guided bombs, missiles and drones rely on GPS navigation, and successful spoofing would make it impossible for them to hit their targets.

However, the article itself suggests that the technology is not all that difficult:

But now the geolocation interference is being used far away from the Kremlin. Some worry that this means that spoofing is getting easier. GPS spoofing previously required considerable technical expertise. Humphreys had to build his first spoofer from scratch in 2008, but notes that it can now be done with commercial hardware and software downloaded from the Internet.

Nor does it require much power. Satellite signals are very weak – about 20 watts from 20,000 miles away – so a one-watt transmitter on a hilltop, plane or drone is enough to spoof everything out to the horizon.

All this brings me to today’s high octane speculation. Firstly, during the Fitzgerald and McCain incidents, the US Navy made something of a fuss over the deteriorating state of training, and crews used to navigating almost exclusively by GPS might account for at least some of the incidents, and might account for why the Navy is reemphasizing the need for good old fashioned celestial navigation skills. While I am not abandoning my theory of other types of cyber warfare and perhaps even mind control technologies being behind those incidents, there is nothing to rule out GPS spoofing either. Perhaps those incidents were tests of combined technologies being used all at once.

Read More @ GizaDeathStar.com

US on path to fascism, on verge of collapse: Ron Paul

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from PressTV:

Former US congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul says a year of apparent economic growth under President Donald Trump is an illusion and that the American political system is on the verge of coming apart similar to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989. 

In an interview with the Washington Examiner on Tuesday, Paul said huge heaps of debt, inflation, and inequality could cause turmoil in the US.

“We’re on the verge of something like what happened in ‘89 when the Soviet system just collapsed,” he said. “I’m just hoping our system comes apart as gracefully as the Soviet system.”

The former Republican lawmaker from Texas said he does not necessarily believe the US will break into separate countries, but instead forecasts a complete overhaul of US monetary policy and an end to what he considers the US “empire” overseas.

“We have ownership of these countries, but it’s not quite like the Soviets did,” he said. “I think our stature in the world and our empire will end, and that’s when, hopefully, the doors will be open and [people will] say, ‘Hey, maybe these libertarians have some answers to this.’”

Paul said “the country’s feeling a lot better, but it’s all on borrowed money” and that “the whole system’s an illusion” built on corporate, personal, and governmental debt.

“It’s a bubble economy in many many different ways and it’s going to come unglued.”

Trump’s 2020 GOP primary challenge

Paul, who served in the US House of Representatives from 1976 until 2013, contended that Trump could face a strong challenger in the 2020 Republican primary presidential elections, especially if “things are really much worse.”

“The appearance of the libertarian movement has been set back partially because of Trump, but intellectually we’ve been doing well,” Paul said, describing a large “hardcore nucleus” of conference-attending enthusiasts.

On Sunday, Republican senator Jeff Flake had also warned that Trump may face inside GOP competition as nominee for the 2020 presidential election if he decides to pursue a second term.

“I do believe if the president is running for re-election, if he continues on the path that he’s on, that that’s going to leave a huge swath of voters looking for something else,” Flake, one of the few Republican lawmakers to publicly condemn Trump, said in an interview on ABC’s “This Week.”

Read More @ PressTV.com

It’s Official: Government Report Says Market Risks are “High and Rising”

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by Pam Martens and Russ Martens, Wall St On Parade:

During Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s press conference on December 13, she had this to say about financial stability on Wall Street: “And I think when we look at other indicators of financial stability risks, there’s nothing flashing red there or possibly even orange. We have a much more resilient, stronger banking system, and we’re not seeing some worrisome buildup in leverage or credit growth at excessive levels.”

Where does Fed Chair Janet Yellen get her information on financial stability risks to the U.S. financial system? A key source for that information is the Office of Financial Research (OFR), a Federal agency created under the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation of 2010 to keep key government regulators like the Federal Reserve informed on mounting risks.

On December 5, the OFR released its Annual Report for 2017. It was not nearly as sanguine as Yellen. In fact, it flatly contradicted some of her assertions. The report noted that numerous areas were, literally, flashing red and orange (OFR uses a color-coded warning system) – raising the question as to why Yellen would attempt to downplay those risks to the American people.

Market risk is in the red zone. The report notes the following:

“Market risks from a sharp change in the prices of assets in financial markets are high and rising.

“Rising prices and falling risk premiums may leave some markets vulnerable to big changes. Risk premiums are returns in excess of returns on risk-free investments.

“Such market corrections can trigger financial instability when the assets are held by entities that have excessive leverage and rely on short-term debt and other liabilities.

“Each of our annual reports has highlighted the risk that low volatility in market prices and persistently low interest rates may promote excessive risk-taking by investors and create future vulnerabilities. In 2017, strong earnings growth, steady economic growth, and increased expectations for a U.S. fiscal policy that stimulates economic growth have fueled the rise in asset prices.

“Stock market valuations are at historic highs, according to several metrics.

“Prices are also elevated in bond markets, suppressing yields. Risk premiums for corporate bonds have nearly fallen to the lowest point since the financial crisis. At the same time, long-term interest rates in the United States remain low, despite a long span of steady economic growth, low unemployment, and gradual increases in benchmark interest rates by the Federal Reserve.

“The low rates have increased the risk of loss by bond investors if interest rates rise, but two factors mitigate the potential systemic risk from rising rates. First, investors such as pension funds and insurance companies have long-term liabilities, including pension obligations and life insurance coverage that allow them to tolerate any short-term market losses on bonds. Second, the Federal Reserve has clearly stated its intention to raise interest rates gradually…

“Nonfinancial corporate debt continues to grow, although at a slower pace than in 2016. Measures of firms’ debt-to-assets and debt-to-earnings ratios are red on the monitor heat map.”

Overall credit risks, according to the report, are flashing orange. However, a number of sub-components are flashing red. According to the OFR report:

“Some measures of credit risk have moderated since last year, reflecting crosscurrents of positive and negative developments. Credit risk from debt by nonfinancial corporations remains elevated. Nonfinancial corporate debt continues to grow, although at a slower pace than in 2016. Measures of firms’ debt-to-assets and debt-to-earnings ratios are red on the monitor heat map.

“In addition, the quality of covenants may be weakening. Covenants are terms in financial contracts meant to protect investors. For example, covenants may limit a borrower’s total debt or restrict business activities. Weaker covenants historically accompany buildups of debt and may signal lower credit quality.”

U.S. debt to GDP is now in the red zone. The report describes the situation as follows:

“U.S. government debt as a percent of gross domestic product (GDP) is at its highest level in decades. Very low interest rates are currently mitigating this vulnerability because they make debt more affordable.”

Read More @ WallStOnParade.com