We finally got around to placing links to the sites where we hang out.
Most days, someone from around here will hit every one of these sites with the exception of Zeal which we hit most every Saturday morning for their weekly essay.
In alphabetical order.
The single best international news gathering outfit out there ... period. Wildly anti-Israel. Owned by the state of Qatar.
Mostly a compiler and a blog much like us, only ..... you know ..... professional. Primarily news for investor/trader types.
Another outstanding international news gathering outfit. Wildly pro-Israel. We're guessing owned by MOSSAD.
One of our favorite sites. We hit every link Jesse posts despite the fact that he resides well to our left.
Primarily a personal blog and promotional site for Charles Hugh Smith's books, Of Two Minds consistently provides a well thought out and supported point of view not commonly available from mainstream outlets. Besides, he's got a Les Paul Custom.
Completely unique from beginning to end. Nobody out there approaches their breadth of in depth content.
Another primarily investment/trading site. Mostly jargon free, clearly written financial news.
Alleged to be owned by the FBI/CIA ...take your pick ... and a tool of the Oligarchs. We mostly believe it. Anonymous hacks em and WikiLeaks publishes their emails. Seems shrewd to be reading some of the same stuff the big guys are getting.
Wolf Richter's fine site offers clearly written, mostly jargon free and well thought out research on economic, energy, social and occasionally completely random issues. Among the sites somebody from around here hits most days.
They claim that "If it's blacked-out, covered-up or censored, you can find it here". That might maybe be a little strong, but still very good stuff.
Just outstanding, simple technical analysis. If you trade, go there!!!
A jargon filled zone. Still, a cut above just about everybody else. The comments are a must if you enjoy the occasional ..... ok ok, frequent ..... vulgar rant.
The funniest thing to me about the growing brewhaha over Google and now Apple's perfectly legal (and dare I say it? ... moral) by the letter application of our moronic tax code is the fact that their approach is so well known and by the way so pervasive, that not only does it have a name, "Double Irish With A Dutch Sandwich" it also has a Wikipedia page.
As always click anywhere below for the entire article.
I left the list out just because I wanted you to give Wikipedia a click as I couldn't figure a way to abbreviate this post and still have it make sense.
The moral remains constant.
The lower the rate, the less incentive to create and exploit loopholes in your tax code and more importantly the greater the incentive you create for the rest of the world to bring their taxable income to you.
That's a good thing.
Best of all, the only cost of this approach accrues to your corrupted government types who lose the ability to exchange tax writing favors for political power.
With apologies to Tyler Durden, I took for all practical purposes the entire post as I couldn't figure a way to abbreviate it and still suck you into clicking through to read it all.
Following the all time record high February budget deficit of $232 billion, the US March budget deficit number is in, and in addition to being bigger than expected, coming at $198.2 billion on expectations of "only" $196 billion, the government outlay in the past month also is the largest March deficit on record.
This brings the total deficit in fiscal 2012 to $779 billion, which is to be expected for a country gripped in total political chaos and which is unable to either raise revenues or lower spending.
What is more disturbing is that over the same period (Oct 1 2011 - March 31, 2012), the US government issued $792 billion in debt, a trend that will continue.
What is most disturbing is that the comparable tax revenues net of refunds, "matching" this increase in deficit and spending, are only $693 billion, in other words the US government is funding well more than half of its cash needs with debt rather than with tax revenue.
The chart below speaks for itself ...
... as does the long term chart.
Now, from Learn Liberty.org who typically do a very nice job of explaining economic issues in terms most civilians can easily understand, a two minute vid boiling the conversation about the deficit down to terms practically anybody can grasp.
Followed by an incomplete (IMHO) conversation having to do with the historical fact that over the past 50 years, massive changes to the tax rate and code have made very little difference in the government's total take as a percentage of GDP.
That which the left seemingly finds impossible to grasp is the notion that people make decisions about work and money and subsequently change their behavior in response to the tax code.
Raising capital gain rates influences some people to hold assets who would otherwise be sellers.
Reduced sales of financial assets yields a reduction in federal tax receipts as assets become locked in place while dampening economic activity as new endeavors find it more difficult to obtain capital.
Raising marginal rates on labor causes some people to work less as work becomes financially less worth the extra effort.
Fewer hours yields lower incomes along with reduced income and payroll taxes.
Which is why lower tax rates and a simplified tax code will always inspires economic growth and subsequently provide enhanced funding for government.
From NASA Science News via our friend Richard Nolle.
Solar Storm Dumps Gigawatts into Earth's Upper Atmosphere
A recent flurry of eruptions on the sun did more than spark pretty auroras around the poles. NASA-funded researchers say the solar storms of March 8th through 10th dumped enough energy in Earth’s upper atmosphere to power every residence in New York City for two years.
“This was the biggest dose of heat we’ve received from a solar storm since 2005,” says Martin Mlynczak of NASA Langley Research Center. “It was a big event, and shows how solar activity can directly affect our planet.”
Mlynczak is the associate principal investigator for the SABER instrument onboard NASA’s TIMED satellite. SABER monitors infrared emissions from Earth’s upper atmosphere, in particular from carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitric oxide (NO), two substances that play a key role in the energy balance of air hundreds of km above our planet’s surface.
“Carbon dioxide and nitric oxide are natural thermostats,” explains James Russell of Hampton University, SABER’s principal investigator. “When the upper atmosphere (or ‘thermosphere’) heats up, these molecules try as hard as they can to shed that heat back into space.”
That’s what happened on March 8th when a coronal mass ejection (CME) propelled in our direction by an X5-class solar flare hit Earth’s magnetic field. (On the “Richter Scale of Solar Flares,” X-class flares are the most powerful kind.) Energetic particles rained down on the upper atmosphere, depositing their energy where they hit. The action produced spectacular auroras around the poles and significant1 upper atmospheric heating all around the globe.
“The thermosphere lit up like a Christmas tree,” says Russell. “It began to glow intensely at infrared wavelengths as the thermostat effect kicked in.”
For the three day period, March 8th through 10th, the thermosphere absorbed 26 billion kWh of energy. Infrared radiation from CO2 and NO, the two most efficient coolants in the thermosphere, re-radiated 95% of that total back into space.
In human terms, this is a lot of energy. According to the New York City mayor’s office, an average NY household consumes just under 4700 kWh annually. This means the geomagnetic storm dumped enough energy into the atmosphere to power every home in the Big Apple for two years.
Physical gold held by ETFs, at 2,469 metric tons, is now the world’s 4th largest gold stash, behind the US, Germany and the IMF.
Iceland is considering adopting the Canadian dollar, “the loonie”, as its currency.
Every $10 increase in the price of crude oil reduces US GDP by 1%.
A record 46.5 million Americans are on food stamps, 15% of the US population, over 22 million US households.
TSA’s VIPR teams conducted 9,300 unannounced checkpoint and frisking operations in the US in 2011 on highways, subways, train stations, ferry terminals, all mass transit locations.
Windows 8 will have a “kill switch” that will have the capability to arbitrarily access your computer and delete “dangerous software”.
The yield on the 10-year bond issued by Portugal jumped by 70 basis points last week coming close to a 14 percent yield. The Greek 10-year bonds jumped to a yield of more than 38 percent.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), obtained hundreds of documents from the Department of Homeland Security through the Freedom of Information Act and found details of an arrangement with General Dynamics in which DHS has been paying the defense contractor to monitor social media websites and other Internet communications to find criticisms of the department’s policies and actions. The company was contracted to monitor the Web for ‘reports that reflect adversely on DHS,’ including sub-agencies like the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Citizenship and Immigration Services, Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”
In case your wondering what Glass Steagall is in the first place, this vid provides a simple and sufficient answer to that question.
In a nutshell Glass Steagall is the shorthand name for legislation passed in 1933 that was specifically designed to help prevent another stock market crash ala 1929 and subsequent depression ala "The Great Depression".
It worked like a charm too ...... right up until the moment it was repealed.
Democrats are gonna hate this story as it totally blows up the notion that the powers that be within the Democrat party care one whit more about you than do those reprehensible fascists of the right.
If you take the time to watch this, you'll at least have an understanding of what hit you.