Archive for December 2009
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Originally posted December 29, 2009
AS ALL OF NORTH AMERICA NOW SEEMS to be focused on the issue of one terrorist wearing a pair of exploding underwear, I might as well comment on this latest bit of security theater that seems to have transfixed the nation. Pictures of the exploding underwear “bomb” have now surfaced on the ‘net. You can view them here at ABC News. Here is exactly what the text on this page says (I’m not making this up, this is seriously true): (warning: Some of the content here is graphic, read at your own risk…) ”The first photo, to the left, shows the slightly charred and singed underpants with the bomb packet still in place.”
I don’t know what you think, but if you did an underwear search of all the passengers flying these days, you’d probably find half of them are wearing underwear that’s slightly charred and singed with the “bomb packet” still in place. The gastrointestinal health of the general population is atrocious! And by the time you add in some airport food and in-flight processed food snacks, pretty much everyone on the airplane is setting off a little bomb packet by the time they get off the plane. (Why do you think everybody can’t wait to get off in such a hurry?) Processed food has turned us all into in-flight terrorists! Frankly, I’m not sure what’s more of a threat to public health: Lousy airport security or the digestive effects of in-flight meals. But they both have one thing in common: Underwear…
How to explode your rectum without harming anyone nearby
The ABC News story mentioned above goes on to state that this terrorist’s underwear was packing 80 grams of an explosive powder called PETN, which government tests have revealed can blow a (tiny) hole in the wall of an airplane. This is all brilliant stuff, of course. Truly brilliant. This whole idea that underwear explosives might destroy an airplane all makes sense except for the fact that the terrorist’s butt cheeks are in the way!
Had this explosive packet actually been set off, I can tell you exactly what would have happened: There would have been a really loud pop, immediately followed by in-flight pieces of exploding butt cheeks. I’m not trying to be funny here. This is a true description of the way bombs work. They explode outward, destroying whatever is closest to them first. And this guy actually had this bomb wedged in between his butt cheeks. A sort of “wedgie bomb”, if you will. A wedgie with a bang.
SAY GOODBYE TO 2009, THE WORST ECONOMIC YEAR since the Great Depression. Say hello to the billionaire bailout society in which the super-rich gamble, lose and get bailed out by the rest of us. To save the system from total collapse we poured trillions of dollars into the financial sector. The result? Banks still are refusing to lend. Thirty million Americans are looking for full-time jobs and 49 million are skipping meals including one out of four children. But Wall Street again is reaping record profits and bonuses.
Not only are we richly rewarding those who wrecked our economy, but also, we have to put up with hundreds of fabrications about how the big banks got us here. Here is my biggest, fattest lies list for 2009:
1. “Government programs for low-income home buyers caused the financial crash.” Wall Street defenders were quick to blame the Community Reinvestment Act, which urges banks to loan money in minority communities. In fact, almost none of the CRA loans are sub-prime and the vast majority are doing well, thank you. Blaming government programs deflects us from the real cause: Wall Street’s incredibly reckless creation, marketing, selling and trading of “innovative” new securities that supposedly removed the risk from pools of risky debt. It didn’t work. Wall Street, not the poor, crashed our economy.
2. “Income inequality is good for everyone.” Lord Brian Griffiths, Vice-Chairman of Goldman Sachs at least had the nerve to say what so many of the super-rich really believe: “We have to accept that inequality is a way of achieving greater opportunity and prosperity for all.”
Unfortunately, the facts suggest otherwise. There is a high correlation between the mal-distribution of income and economic crashes. The last time our wealth and income distribution was as skewed as it is today was 1929, and that’s not an accident. When too much money is in the hands of the few it runs out of real world investment and gravitates towards speculative investments. This inevitably creates asset bubbles and crashes. Record pay and bonuses on Wall Street and high unemployment are connected. (See The Looting of America Chapter 11).
by Bill Bonner from The Daily Reckoning
Posted originally 19 November 2009
The Lloyd’s Prayer
Our Chairman, who art at Goldman
Blankfein be thy name
The rally’s come
God’s work be done
On earth as we have no fear of correction
Give us this day our daily gains…
Poor Goldman Sachs. Everyone is on its case. Criticizing. Carping. Jealous. Envious. So, today we rise in defense of the Wall Street giant. Yes, the Goldmen may be shysters. But they are honest shysters… Besides, it was another slow day on Wall Street. Investors are still mulling the news. As we all know, the recession is over. But… What kind of strange recovery is this? A survey showed that only 1 in 10 workers say his income is going up. This is the lowest reading since 1946.
Meanwhile, the news two days ago was that homebuilding took a dive in October. Work began on 11% fewer houses than the month before. On multi-family dwellings, the figures were worse – down 35%. Why would homebuilding go down when the economy is supposedly gathering strength? Well, builders were wondering what would happen when they finished the houses. The new house tax credit was due to expire; they weren’t sure the politicians would be witless enough to renew it.
They need not have worried. Give the politicos a chance to do something stupid and they will come through every time. Since the end of October, Congress passed and President Obama signed an extension of the housing credit. Until next April, at least, first time buyers will get an $8,000 credit. You’d think that would have revived animal spirits a bit in the residential construction industry. But today’s news tells us that mortgage applications are falling – even with lower interest rates.
How come interest rates are falling? Well, here again, we see the heavy hand of the feds. The “quantitative easing” has come to a halt… that is, the Fed is no longer buying US Treasury debt (it doesn’t need to). But its buying of mortgage backed securities continues. That program will last until March of next year. Still… housing is not cooperating. This news hasn’t had much impact on Wall Street. All that can be said is that investors have seemed to hesitate for the last couple of days.