Saturday, January 30, 2010
There is some wicked economic mojo going on out there -
The yield on 10-year Greek bonds blasted upwards by over 40 basis points to 7.15pc in a day of wild trading. Spreads over German Bunds reached almost four percentage points, by far the highest since Greece joined the euro, and close to levels that risk a self-feeding spiral. Contagion hit Portuguese, Spanish, Irish, and Italian bonds.And in the U.K. -
Hans Redeker, currency chief at BNP Paribas, said Greece will face "great trouble" if it has to pay 7pc rates for long. Athens must raise €53bn this year, mostly in the first half. It has a been relying on cheap short-term debt to fund the budget deficit of 13pc of GDP, but this raises "roll-over risk".
The collapse in the value of the pound has left a £1.3billion black hole in Britain’s defence budget, MPs have been warned.In California -
State Controller John Chiang issued a stern warning Friday about California's cash reserves, telling legislative leaders and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger they must act on nearly $9 billion in budget cuts the governor is seeking by March — or the state will run out of cash to pay its bills.Darn those financial dudes, always wrecking a gubanahs good time! On a tangential note, Schwarzanegger has decreed - If we spend lots of mon-ey in kaleehfornyah we will have more, so I have ordered a million pizzas for everyone to stimulate kaleehfornyah.
...Chiang is calling for an additional $2 billion in cash-flow "solutions." Looking at previous cash crunches, that could mean some payments, like income tax refunds, would be delayed for a few weeks to keep the cushion intact.
The Real Effect
Considering the market is totally ignoring the 5.7% GDP growth increase, I think they are looking at two possibilities -
- The GDP numbers are transient and partially bogus for recovery concerns.
- The situation in Greece is FAR WORSE than the positive news warrants.
Friday, January 29, 2010
The hospital had announced a spike in severe cases. 17 patients had been admitted this month, and 7 went to the ICU. Two of those patients have died. The ratio of hospitalized to ICU to deaths is markedly different this month than last fall, when thousands of children were seen and about 340 were admitted. 30-40 went to the ICU and 3 died. Thus, the death of 2 of the 17 admitted or of the 7 in the ICU is at a much higher rate and raises concerns that the H1N1 circulating this year will be more virulent due to increases in D225G/N, which is being reported in multiple locations worldwide, including a Tamiflu resistant fatal cluster at Duke Medical Center.
The Real Effect
I was among one of the first to report on the D225G/N mutation back on Dec 2 and the second European wave that has hit the Ukraine particularly hard. While the second wave never materialized in the United States, with the bath that the vaccine manufacturers are taking on the excess H1N1 vaccine and the WHO debacle, look for the envelope to be pushed on this mutation if they can get it. The next few weeks will determine if WHO wants to redeem themselves and cover their rears by staging a third wave flu false flag.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
From the AP -
The Democratic-controlled Senate has muscled through a plan to allow the government to go a whopping $1.9 trillion deeper in debt.Does anyone think that any of these politicians are even remotely serious about reigning in spending, even the new messiah Scott Brown? Most importantly, are you going to see a $45,000 increase in your standard of living? No? Didn't think so...
The party-line 60-40 vote was successful only because Republican Sen.-elect Scott Brown has yet to be seated. Sixty votes were required to approve the increase. The measure would lift the debt ceiling to $14.3 trillion. That's about $45,000 for every American.
Democrats and Republicans alike share responsibility for running up the debt, but it falls upon Democrats to pass the measure since they control the government. It makes no difference that Republicans routinely backed increases in the debt when former President George W. Bush was in office.
On a related note, here's a nice little State unemployment chart that demonstrates just how desperate the State's situation is.
UPDATE: Like I said, nothing is going to change. - Senate Reappoints Bernanke
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
The Fed has purchased 80% of Treasury debt yoy, increasing the monetary base from $850 billion to $2 trillion, which includes Agencies and MBS. Seeking cover on their announcement, they said on Christmas they would supply unlimited funds for three years to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Government liabilities made in behalf of the American taxpayer since the third quarter of 2007 have jumped 61% to $3.62 trillion. It is our opinion that the inflation caused by funding and monetization over the next decade will be very disruptive and expensive to US dollar users as purchasing power falls. That translates into an additional loss in buying power of some 50%. (Emphasis mine)
Democrats have completely lost their moorings. They want to allow government to borrow an additional $1.9 trillion to put the national debt at $14.3 trillion. It would need 60 votes to pass.
Food prices are roaring upward again as the PPI rose 0.2%. That is a 4.4% gain month-on-month.
Housing starts were 575,000 and building permits rose 653,000. Starts fell 4%. How can any sane builder be building when official and bank hidden inventories are well over a year. Groundbreaking fell a record 38.8% to an all-time low of 553,000 units. Single-family starts fell 6.9% in January. New building permits rose 10.9% for all of 2009 permits fell 36.9%. A Florida builder who was going to build 5,000 units declared bankruptcy yesterday. (There is going to be a further decline in housing prices.)
By 2008, suburbs were home to the largest and fastest-growing poor population in the country.
In the depths of the crisis, the Fed shipped more than $500 billion overseas through arrangements with other central banks, in exchange for their currencies. Such lending is down sharply and officials expect to end the program according to plan on Feb. 1. As of January 13, the Fed held $5.9 billion in dollar "swap" agreements with foreign central banks, down from $63 billion in early September and $583 billion in late December 2008 as the financial crisis was worsening. [This is very important. Without the swaps supporting the dollar in the Forex and buying Treasuries by foreign central banks will recede. The dollar will fall and there will be more monetization.]
A MINORITY VIEW
BY WALTER WILLIAMS
RELEASE: WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 20, 2010
Some expect Haiti's 7.0 earthquake death toll to reach over 200,000 lives. Why the high death toll? Northern California's 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake was more violent, measuring 7.1 on the Richter scale, resulting in 63 deaths and 3,757 injuries. The 1906 San Francisco earthquake measured 7.8 on the Richter scale, about eight times more violent than Haiti's, and cost 3,000 lives.
As tragic as the Haitian calamity is, it is merely symptomatic of a far deeper tragedy that's completely ignored, namely self-inflicted poverty. The reason why natural disasters take fewer lives in our country is because we have greater wealth. It's our wealth that permits us to build stronger homes and office buildings. When a natural disaster hits us, our wealth provides the emergency personnel, heavy machinery and medical services to reduce the death toll and suffering. Haitians cannot afford the life-saving tools that we Americans take for granted. President Barack Obama called the quake "especially cruel and incomprehensible." He would be closer to the truth if he had said that the Haitian political and economic climate that make Haitians helpless in the face of natural disasters are "especially cruel and incomprehensible."
The biggest reason for Haiti being one of the world's poorest countries is its restrictions on economic liberty. Let's look at some of it. According to the 2009 Index of Economic Freedom, authorization is required for some foreign investments, such as in electricity, water, public health and telecommunications. Authorization requires bribing public officials and, as a result, Haiti's monopolistic telephone services can at best be labeled primitive. That might explain the difficulty Haitian-Americans have in finding out about their loved ones.
Corruption is rampant. Haiti ranks 177th out of 179 countries in the 2007 Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index. Its reputation as one of the world's most corrupt countries is a major impediment to doing business. Customs officers often demand bribes to clear shipments. The Heritage Foundation's Index of Economic Freedom says that because of burdensome regulations and bribery, starting a business in Haiti takes an average of 195 days, compared with the world average of 38 days. Getting a business license takes about five times longer than the world average of 234 days -- that's over three years.
Crime and lawlessness are rampant in Haiti. The U.S. Department of State website (travel.state.gov), long before the earthquake, warned, "There are no "safe" areas in Haiti. ... Kidnapping, death threats, murders, drug-related shootouts, armed robberies, home break-ins and car-jacking are common in Haiti." The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade warns its citizens that, "The level of crime in Haiti is very high and the police have little ability to enforce laws. Local authorities often have limited or no capacity to provide assistance, even if you are a victim of a serious crime." Crime anywhere is a prohibitive tax on economic development and the poorest people are its primary victims.
Private property rights are vital to economic growth. The Index of Economic Freedom reports that "Haitian protection of investors and property is severely compromised by weak enforcement, a paucity of updated laws to handle modern commercial practices, and a dysfunctional and resource-poor legal system." That means commercial disputes are settled out of court often through the bribery of public officials; settlements are purchased.
The way out of Haiti's grinding poverty is not rocket science. Ranking countries according to: (1) whether they are more or less free market, (2) per capita income, and (3) ranking in International Amnesty's human rights protection index, we would find that those nations with a larger free market sector tend also to be those with the higher income and greater human rights protections. Haitian President Rene Preval is not enthusiastic about free markets; his heroes are none other than the hemisphere's two brutal communist tyrants: Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and Cuba's Fidel Castro.
Haiti's disaster demands immediate Western assistance but it's only the Haitian people who can relieve themselves of the deeper tragedy of self-inflicted poverty.
Walter E. Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University. To find out more about Walter E. Williams and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2010 CREATORS.COM
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
From the Mirror -
Two men were stopped boarding US-bound planes at Heathrow days before Britain's terror threat was raised to "severe".Oh the humanity, we had two individuals on the ever pervasive "no-fly list" try to get on a plane. We're so fortunate that we have these vigilant individuals stopping all the
News of the incidents came hours after Home Secretary Alan Johnson lifted the threat level amid fears that al-Qaeda is planning an attack
Anti-terror officials said the past week had seen an "unusually high" number of people on their no-fly list trying to board US-bound planes.
Qaeda network, a US monitoring group warned Sunday.Never you mind the fact that 's word choice in the latest audio message attributed to him is seen as a "possible indicator" of an upcoming attack by his Al-the White House can't vouch for the tape's authenticity.
IntelCenter, a US group that monitors Islamist websites, also said that manner of the release and the content of the message showed it was "credible" that it was a new release from the Saudi extremist.
It's nice to know that if someone so much as breaks wind in an airplane, we'll have the ability to stop them before anything happens. Or do we really do that anymore?
The banksters need to cover their tracks, they need a distraction. I wouldn't be surprised to see a building with all sorts of documentation get targeted.
Update: 1:00 PM - Even more saber rattling going on:
Report says Al-Qaeda still aims to use weapons of mass destruction against U.S.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Last June I posted the following -
This is not a recession, it is a depression. And a massive one at that. We are not at the bottom, we are on gaining momentum for the next plunge down. If you thought the last drop was bad, this one is going to strike fear into the hearts of men everywhere. The Dow will push through the last market low of 7,392.27, then 6000 and after that 3000.
Things are NOT going to get better, they are going to get significantly worse overall. It may be true that we might see some small respites here and there as investors hope for a resurgence in the market but overall we are in for one serious ride.
The next level of support is in the 10,000 - 10,100 range which should offer a brief rally for psychological reasons. But there are no hard numbers to justify this level of the Dow. Expect to see more resistance around 9,800, 9,500 and 9,100 as it gives up these ill gotten gains.
The market is broke, everyone is just now realizing this. Got gold?
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Positives include -
- No new regulation of the financial markets. (Jan 2010)
- 15 percent across the board tax cut. (Jan 2010)
- Permanently eliminate the estate tax. (Jan 2010)
- Voted NO on municipal meals tax, in addition to state tax. (Jun 2003)
- Voted NO on raising income tax to 5.95% to offset deficit. (Apr 2003)
- Supported $200K reduction to blind job program. (Jul 2003)
- Opposed $900K for disability & mentoring aid. (Jul 2003)
- Voted NO on earmark for women's substance abuse program. (Feb 2004)
- Opposed federal school breakfast supplement. (Jul 2003)
- Voted NO on 3-year moratorium on charter schools. (May 2003)
- Vouchers for public, private, or religious schools. (Nov 2002) - As long as the Feds stay out.
- Opposes cap-and-trade system, but renewables OK. (Jan 2010)
- Campaign disclosure but no donation limits. (Nov 2002)
- Voted NO on Constitutional call for universal health care. (Jul 2004)
- MA already has health bill; don't impose new federal bill. (Nov 2009)
- Ensure access to basic health care, including state funding. (Nov 2002)
- Supports enhanced interrogation techniques. (Jan 2010)
- No constitutional rights for enemy combatants. (Jan 2010)
- Culture of patriotism; vigorous homeland defense. (Sep 2009)
- Supports 30,000 more troops in Afghanistan. (Jan 2010)
- Terrorists are not gone from Afghanistan. (Jan 2010)
- Finish the job in Afghanistan: keep Taliban and al-Qaeda out. (Nov 2009
- Concealed carry ok; but licenses & background checks ok too. (Nov 2002)
- Promote increased use of alternative fuel technology. (Nov 2002)
- Voted YES on defining marriage as one man and one woman. (Feb 2004) - This is not a Federal issue.
- No cap on bankers' salaries. (Sep 2009) (For those who take at others expense, you have to pay the piper)
- Abortions should always be legally available. (Nov 2002)
- Support legalized abortion, but not partial-birth abortion. (Jan 2010)
"This is the people's seat," Brown said to a cheering crowd.Yes, yes it is Mr. Brown. And you would do well to remember that fact in the future.
The Real Effect
Fool me once, shame on you.
In 1994, Republicans surged into power with the Contract With America amid promises of shrinking the size of government, promoting lower taxes, greater entrepreneurial activity, tort reform and welfare reform. While one can quibble that this was achieved to a degree, the overall net effect during this time was the exact opposite. Government largess grew exponentially, myriads of wars were started, Federal departments were created and liberty was slashed to a nub. Towards the end of 2008, all that remained were entitled carcasses of what was in effect "dead" politicians.
Just like the ring of power, Republicans seized the power and then the power seized them. This is why we the Democrats were able to route the Republicans in 2008 amid "Hope and Change".
Now in 2010 we have individuals that are at best, moderates, clothing themselves in liberty dress in an attempt to garner votes. And we think this is going to change anything? Hardly.
The new Tea Party, 9/12, Turner, Hannity, Limbaugh, Petraeus, Palin, Beck, O'Reilly and Brown; these individuals are all Benedict Arnolds to the cause of liberty and will sell you down the river if the right situation arises.
Webster Griffin Tarpley opines -
...Massachusetts voters settled for second best in the form of cultural populism as represented by the Republican Scott Brown, whose main claim to fame was that he drove a truck with 200,000 miles on it. That is the demagogic essence of cultural populism, the only kind of populism of which Republicans and reactionaries in general are capable.Brown is a show pony and more precisely he's what the people think they want, not what they need. The Republicans will not relinquish the ring of power, they will embrace it and lose their integrity in the process.
The boiling rage of the American electorate is directed against the two-party consensus which has made possible the transfer of between $25 and $30 trillion of US government money — Treasury, Federal Reserve, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, etc. — in the form of the TARP or bailout, while the official rate of unemployment and underemployment approaches 18%.
Fool me twice, shame on me.
UPDATE - Well, that didn't take long.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The U.S. government posted a deficit of $91.9 billion in December, nearly double the shortfall of a year earlier and marking the government's 15th straight month in the red, the Treasury Department reported Wednesday.
The shortfall brings the total deficit for the first quarter of fiscal year 2010 to $388.5 billion, up from $332 billion during the same period last year.
It was the second consecutive December the government spent more than it took in. In December 2008, the deficit was $51.8 billion.
While December's deficit was less than the $120.3 billion in November, that's no reason to celebrate. The government typically rings up a surplus in December as year-end bonuses boost high individual withholding and as companies make quarterly income tax payments.
The deficit remained high in the first three months of the fiscal year because while spending was down by $3.6 billion from the same period last year, tax revenue fell even more, dropping by $59.7 billion as individual income and payroll taxes declined.
Interest paid on the debt in December was $104.6 billion -- 34% of federal outlays for the month.
"No surprises, the government obviously continues to run a very large deficit," said Gus Faucher, director of macro economics at Moody's Economy.com. "But that's necessary as a response to the recession and the financial crisis."
The Treasury estimates the annual deficit will climb to $1.502 trillion for the full fiscal year 2010, up from $1.42 trillion in 2009.
Debt ceiling: For the long term, many economists are less concerned about monthly and annual deficits, focusing instead on the enormous accumulation of national debt and its rapid upward trend.
"We want to have a big deficit now because that's helping to stimulate the economy, said Faucher. "The concern is about the longer run."
That's especially true after Congress raised the debt ceiling again. The new limit for the amount of debt the Treasury is allowed to have, passed in the last days of 2009, was set at $12.394 trillion, up $290 billion from the previous level of $12.104 trillion. Depending on the state of the economy, this should provide the government relief until mid-February.
As of Monday, the country's total public debt was $12.285 trillion, $109 billion below the debt limit.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
AUGUSTA — Maine's budget proposal would allow jointly owned camps or summer cottages to be seized to help reimburse the state for Medicaid expenses.
Many Maine families have owned and maintained camps or summer cottages through joint tenancy deeds, which permit them to keep the property within their families.
But as Maine Public Radio reports, the state would get the power to seize those properties in some cases. Health and Human Services Commissioner Brenda Harvey says the change would allow the state to be reimbursed for its costs if one of the property owners uses Medicaid funding to pay for long-term care.
Under present law, those properties can't count as an asset toward their expenses.
This will make raising money for the state significantly more expensive, and is likely to force some funds that can only hold A paper or better to sell California debt.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded,
Because you disdained all my counsel,
And would have none of my rebuke,
I also will laugh at your calamity;
I will mock when your terror comes,
When your terror comes like a storm,
And your destruction comes like a whirlwind,
When distress and anguish come upon you.
“ Then they will call on me, but I will not answer;
They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me.
Because they hated knowledge
And did not choose the fear of the LORD,
From the Telegraph -
Fitch Ratings has issued the starkest warning to date that the US will lose its AAA credit rating unless acts to bring the budget deficit under control, citing a spiral in debt service costs and dependence on foreign lenders.Ever wonder how things got to this point? From Bloomberg -
Fitch expects the combined state and federal debt to reach 94pc of GDP next year, up from 57pc at the end of 2007. Federal interest costs will reach 13pc of revenues, meaning that an eighth of all taxes will go to service debt. Most fiscal experts view this level as dangerously close to the point of no return for debt dynamics.
“Dec. 16 (Bloomberg) — Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which got $10 billion and debt guarantees from the U.S. government in October, expects to pay $14 million in taxes worldwide for 2008 compared with $6 billion in 2007.Now compare this with Ed Brown's reported tax dodging sentence of 37 years and ask yourself who the real criminals are?
The company’s effective income tax rate dropped to 1 percent from 34.1 percent, New York-based Goldman Sachs said today in a statement. The firm reported a $2.3 billion profit for the year after paying $10.9 billion in employee compensation and benefits.
Goldman Sachs, which today reported its first quarterly loss since going public in 1999, lowered its rate with more tax credits as a percentage of earnings and because of “changes in geographic earnings mix,” the company said.
The rate decline looks “a little extreme,” said Robert Willens, president and chief executive officer of tax and accounting advisory firm Robert Willens LLC.”
Monday, January 11, 2010
Wha, wha, whaaaaa? From Bloomberg -
The U.S. Treasury and Labor Departments will ask for public comment as soon as next week on ways to promote the conversion of 401(k) savings and Individual Retirement Accounts into annuities or other steady payment streams, according to Assistant Labor Secretary Phyllis C. Borzi and Deputy Assistant Treasury Secretary Mark Iwry, who are spearheading the effort.
Senator Herb Kohl, chairman of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, proposed legislation on Dec. 16 to require fund companies to do more to ensure 401(k) options are appropriate for workers. The Wisconsin Democrat cited reports that target- date funds designed for people retiring in 2010 invested in high-yield, high-risk corporate bonds.
The Real Effect
No, way! Who could have seen that coming?!? -
The long and short is they are bleeding the real assets out of the United States and passing them into foreign control. Make no mistake, they will bleed this country dry. Savings, checkings, 401K, gold, assets, they want it all and will not stop until they get it.
Friday, January 08, 2010
Thursday, January 07, 2010
On December 24, the Senate passed a vote by a razor thin margin (with not a vote to spare) to raise the Federal debt ceiling from $12,104 billion to $12,394 billion. The actual debt ceiling increase took effect on December 28. And as the chart below shows, the Treasury’s cash flow projections were spot on: 3 days later, and the debt subject to limit surged to $12,254, a jump of over $200 billion in 2 days, and a whopping $150 billion over the old debt ceiling.
Three days is all the buffer the administration’s reckless spending spree has afforded this country to avoid bankruptcy. Had one more Democratic vote dissented from the stopgap measure, the US would now be in technical default.
From the Wall Street Journal, bankruptcies rage -
Overall, personal bankruptcy filings hit 1.41 million last year, up 32% from 2008, according to the National Bankruptcy Research Center ...
American Thinker reports the following -
There are only three possibilities with respect to meeting 2010 funding needs:Treasuries are sliding -
* The Fed continues its QE beyond their planned cessation in March 2010.
* The Fed raises interest rates to levels that would attract the capital necessary to fund government operations via conventional credit markets.
* No Fed action is taken. That would cause the government to default on some of its obligations.
Treasuries were the worst performing sovereign debt market in 2009 as the U.S. sold $2.1 trillion of notes and bonds to fund extraordinary efforts to bolster the economy and financial markets. Investors in U.S. debt lost 3.5 percent on average through Dec. 30, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch indexes, the biggest annual slide since at least 1978.States can't squeeze blood from a rock -
New US census data show that state and local government tax revenue continued their year-long plunge in the third quarter, falling by 7 percent from the same period last year. In response, governments are cutting spending on social programs, infrastructure and education, and are laying off or cutting the wages of government workers.From the San Francisco Chronicle:
California's political leaders, who are facing the daunting challenge of closing an estimated $20.7 billion budget deficit this year, are looking to Washington for help. Just don't call it a bailout.Several things merit mention.
Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, said he plans to head to the nation's capital "early and often" seeking federal assistance. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger already has put the federal government on notice that he wants billions he says the state is owed.
Steinberg said he wants a "dynamic partnership" between the federal government and the states, led by California, to spend money for infrastructure.
"No one is looking for a bailout. We're looking for an investment," he said, adding that the state needs to "fight" for more money.
"It's in the national interest because California is an economic engine, and if we continue to be bogged down in deficits that are largely the result of the recession, then the country is going to have a hard time recovering," he said.
California already has received just over $8 billion in federal stimulus dollars that helped the state close the budget deficit last year. On Friday, Schwarzenegger will release his initial budget proposal for the next fiscal year, and the Legislative Analyst's Office already has called on state leaders to "aggressively seek new federal assistance" to help close the projected deficit.
- Notice the "to big to fail" mentality?
- They already spent $8 billion in stimulus.
- They are now looking at $21 billion gap?
States are addicted to spending (Sugar, sugar, SUGAR!!!), citizens are addicted to handouts, corporations are addicted to bailouts.
How can we, as a nation (I say it even though I despise collectivist thinking) begin to compete when we embrace a national policy of "Non-responsibility". Did the past communist failures of the 20th century, which arguably claimed more live than the bulk of any other tragedy, not matter to anyone? Have we learned nothing? Have our forefathers died in absolute vain?!?
Yet it is these same individuals who will quickly foist the American flag upon the petard of their ignorance and claim that if we fail to act, we are sentencing the Republic to certain demise.
No sir, you ensured that death by your reckless actions years ago.
We last checked in with the British police state about two months ago. Let’s see what’s new.
British bus passengers could soon be forced to use electronic tags to get onto buses. This fits in with the British government's move away from paper checks and toward an electronic system to be implemented by 2018. The best part of an electronic bus pass is that it will surely help prevent bus-based terrorism.
Britain is also making sure its schools are safe. Four-year-olds are being monitored for “radicalization,” and five-year-olds are being taught sexual education. After all, there is nothing worse than a sexually naive five-year-old who is also a terrorist.
British school teachers have also been given the authority to frisk school children and search their school bags for drugs without consent, because we know how seriously Britain takes drug enforcement.
British schools have not only been protecting students against drugs, but they've also been protecting them against obesity. Students in Greater Manchester have been forced to walk to school rather than getting dropped off by their parents to help keep the students in shape. ...Better hustle up, fatties, or we'll take you away from your mothers! Just kidding, of course.
Britain isn’t only making sure its schools are safe. It’s making sure everywhere else is safe as well.
A few months ago, Britain started to put CCTV cameras into the homes of 20,000 "problem families" to make sure that the families raise their children correctly. This is good for keeping people safe indoors, but what about outdoors?
Well, luckily, the government has been going into the homes of willing citizens and placing CCTV's inside to be trained on the street to keep a watch for "anti-social behaviour."
What about inside private establishments? Can we make them as safe as our homes? Well, luckily, now a pub can be closed down if it doesn't have "sufficient" CCTV coverage. ...And I was afraid I might actually be alone!
Also, if you are ever lonely, don't worry, because new CCTV cameras have been outfitted with speakers, so they can talk to you. ...I want them to tell me how pretty I am!
The best thing about these CCTV cameras is that they're cost-effective. In fact, the top-earning CCTV speeding camera takes in over £420 thousand in fines a year. No wonder people love them so much.
Of course, CCTV isn't Britain's only tool against crime, pre-crime, and legal drinking. Britain is also still capable of that "personal touch." That is why they've given 20,000 town hall bureaucrats the power to enter homes without a warrant.
Reasons these bureaucrats can enter include: checking to make sure a house has an "eco-friendly" refrigerator, making sure a hedge is not too high, and making sure no 'unregulated hypnotism' is taking place. ...Regulated hypnotism, of course, is fine.
Cyberspace also got safer when Britain enlisted telecoms to help them spy on every phone call, email and web search British citizens make. This makes people safer because naturally now the government knows what they're doing.
The information gathered will be available to such important agencies as: local councils, the Financial Services Authority, the ambulance service, fire authorities and even prison governors. ...Finally, ambulance drivers will know what our Google searches have been even if we're unconscious!
The best news for the police state, however, has been that the criminal code has expanded. Since 1997, 3,000 criminal offenses have been created, 1,472 of which are imprisonable. The number of people over 50 entering the criminal justice system has also risen by almost 50% in eight years.
Not only has the criminal code expanded, but the people who have arrest powers has also expanded. In Norwich, mall cops can now arrest people. ...Sorry, Grandpa, but now it looks like you really are going to have to get out of the massage chair.
Despite all these victories, the police state did suffer one setback during the last two months. Britain was collecting the names, dates of birth and passport details of every passenger entering into and exiting from the country well before they got to the airport, just like any good police state would. But then the EU, which after the ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon has authority to overrule member nations' criminal laws, disallowed it.
This truly is a monumental loss. Britain's tyrannical has been overridden by an even greater tyrannical authority. Why is it always thus to tyrants?
Don't worry, Britain. As long as you exist as an independent country, however long that may be, we here in America will always have our eyes on you.
After all, we want to keep you safe.
Wednesday, January 06, 2010
US-based investment group Pimco, one of the world’s leading bond houses, said it will sell its UK government gilts this year. It will be a hammer blow to the Treasury’s attempt to raise up to £200billion of government borrowing amid the deficit crisis.The Real Effect
Experts fear the debt will damage Britain’s international credit rating, leading to concerns that investors will simply not be prepared to risk putting money into shoring up the government.
It could mean the country effectively going bankrupt, with the Government being forced to plead for aid from the International Monetary Fund.
No way! Who would have seen that coming?
...with the upcoming housing market slowdown, the decline in personal savings, increase in household credit debt and many other economic factors and Houston, we have a major problem brewing.and
European Union -They will be hit by this economic downswing, but where the US will be ravaged by this downturn, the EU will "weather the storm" precisely because they are the EU.
Tuesday, January 05, 2010
Iceland was plunged back into crisis after its president refused to sign a bill promising to repay more than €3.8bn (£3.4bn) to Britain and the Netherlands after the collapse of the country's Icesave bank in 2008.
Olafur Grimsson said he would force a referendum on the deeply unpopular legislation, causing a schism within the Icelandic government, with prime minister Johanna Sigurdardottir maintaining that the money would be repaid.
The escalating row threatens to further destablise the Icelandic economy, which went into meltdown after the failure of its three big banks, cutting off further aid from the International Monetary Fund and jeopardising efforts to join the European Union. The credit rating agency Fitch immediately downgraded Iceland, describing the latest political row as a "significant setback".