Montag, 24. November 2008

Next-up news Nr 747

Bailouts Dwarf Spending on Climate and Poverty Crises

Speculation Rises As Stimulus Plan Takes Shape

Bailouts Dwarf Spending on Climate and Poverty Crises

Idiots and Bailouts

All US Financials Will be Nationalized in a Year: Manager

It's not preferable, but all major U.S. financial companies will eventually be under government control because the alternative is so much worse, Hugh Hendry, chief investment officer at hedge fund Eclectica Asset Management, said Friday.

US October home price drop is new record

Today's figures compare with the 4.86 million level reached in June, the lowest in a decade and 33 percent below the record reached in September 2005. Resales have fluctuated around a 4.96 million rate this year.

From Information Clearing House

7.7 Trillion Dollars And Counting

The Cost Of "Rescuing" The US Financial System

By Hamilton Nolan

US government has pledged more than $7.7 trillion of our tax dollars to "rescue" the financial system. How much is 7.7 trillion?

You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet

"The problems we face today cannot be solved by the minds that created them" Albert Einstein

By Mike Whitney

It is vital to realize that markets are never under some obligation to stop falling merely because they have already fallen by an ungodly amount. It also is vital to explore how bad the worst-case scenario can get and to think about how you would respond if it comes to pass.

War Of The Worlds

By Yvonne Ridley

Far from re-building Afghanistan the military forces, especially the Americans, are now viewed with a deep hatred and revulsion.

Holiday Horrors for Turkeys

Overcoming Fears of Falling Stock Prices

Dean Baker, Truthout: "The stock market's historic plunge over the last year has pushed the news media into a state of near hysteria. News shows and headlines routinely roll out the scorecard on the market's new lows in the same way they might list the victims of a terrorist attack. Sad-faced commentators do their best to assure us that better times lie ahead, even if they can find little reason for hope in the latest economic data. The economic data are indeed grim, but the plunge in stock prices need not be a major cause of concern to the bulk of us who have little or no stock."

Urge to Stop Selling Fur

Our Banking System's Broken — No more free money from Washington. No more masters of the universe. No more business as usual. Time for a banking holiday.

Despite Army's Assurances, Violence at Home

Lizette Alvarez, The New York Times: "The Army says that the measures it has taken have been effective in curbing domestic violence. But advocates of victims of domestic violence say that among combat troops the violence has spiked in the past two years and that women are often disinclined to report violence for fear of angering their partners and hurting their careers. These advocates point to the gruesome murders of three female soldiers based at Fort Bragg in North Carolina within the last four months. One woman's body was dismembered and dumped in the woods. Another woman, seven months pregnant, was found dead in a motel bathtub. The third was stabbed to death."

Next-up news Nr 746

Gabriel und Umweltverbände warnen vor Aufweichung der Klimaziele (Pressemitteilung) - Wien, Austria

Ohnehin sei ja schon vereinbart, die Abgasnormen der Autos nur schrittweise zu senken und nicht wie ursprünglich geplant schon im Jahr 2012 den Grenzwert zu ...

Mobile phone masts refused amid protests over locations

Monday, November 24, 2008, 08:59

FOUR out of seven mobile phone masts to cover 'blind spot' areas in Torbay have been refused planning permission.

Torbay Council's development control committee was considering the applications by mobile phone company Vodaphone for slimline masts, to be disguised as telegraph poles or lamp standards, and equipment cabinet stations, to fill in areas of poor 3G signal reception.

The company wanted masts between 10 and 15 metres high at Herbert Road, Hawkins Road, St Vincent's Road, Perinville Road, Grafton Road and Warberry Road in Torquay, and Lammas Lane in Paignton.

Planner Mike Smith said the structures would be mono-pole masts rather than lattice structures as they were designed to give line of sight cover for small areas of just a few roads.

He said: "The company has had complaints about inadequate coverage and its contract obliges it to fill in the gaps."

There were public protests about Herbert Road, Hawkins Avenue and Perinville Road, and each was refused.


The truth about bailouts

Market Oracle
by Peter Schiff


Washington can only offer funds that it has borrowed from abroad or printed. Unfortunately, the nation is in the grips of a delusion that money derived from these sources has the power to heal. But history has clearly shown that borrowed or printed money only has the power to destroy...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp


The Next Depression?

With markets in free fall, economist Peter Schiff opposes stimulus and printing money to fund it.

Gates and the urge to surge

Common Dreams
by Ray McGovern


It may become a biennial ritual. Every two years, if the commander-in-chief (or the commander-in-chief-elect) says he wants to throw more troops into an unwinnable war for no clear reason other than his political advantage, panderer-in-chief Robert Gates will shout ‘Outstanding!’ Never mind what the commanders in the field are saying — much less the troops who do the dying. After meeting in Canada on Friday with counterparts from countries with troops in Afghanistan, Defense Secretary Gates emphasized to reporters there is a shared interest in ’surging as many forces as we can’ into Afghanistan before the elections there in late September 2009. At the concluding news conference, Gates again drove home the point, ‘It’s important that we have a surge of forces.’ Basking in the alleged success of the Iraq ’surge,’ Gates knows a winning word when he hears one — whether the facts are with him or not...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Government bailouts are a problem, not the solution

by Joe Scarlett


In the old days bank robbers went to jail. Today, the bankers and the robbers are one and the same, and they are being rewarded for incompetence with huge bags of extra money, courtesy of us taxpayers. We have centuries of history that prove that markets don’t go up forever. Bankers, more than almost any other group, should know this and if they do not, they should not be bankers. When bankers give mortgages to those who obviously can’t repay, there is a serious shortage of basic common sense (or maybe just plain stupidity) as well as a lack of financial responsibility to stockholders and customers. When you look at today’s banking and real estate crisis, it is clear to even the least sophisticated among us that common sense has been lacking and basic ethics are out the window. Congress has now committed $700 billion to the very people who got us into this mess — a massive obligation belonging not to the politicians but to current and future taxpayers...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp$700

Restricting freedoms and choices

The Free Liberal
by US Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX)


As the financial sector continues its tailspin despite efforts to bail out Wall Street, among the few gainers in recent stock trading have been those companies looking for a new ’shot in the arm’ with government funding from the next administration. With its strident rhetoric toward reestablishing the so called ‘pro-choice’ agenda, the incoming administration has threatened a whole host of policies that would not only reduce restrictions on abortion, but would actually force people who wish to avoid participating in the procedure to support it...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Case for pessimism: Obama appoints people to key posts who oppose his policies

by Justin Raimondo


Is it really possible that a candidate for president elevated to front-runner status by antiwar voters in the primaries — and elected over a rival who made support for the war the leitmotif of his losing campaign — is enabling the hijacking of American foreign policy by a new cabal of warmongers? The idea that by surrounding himself with advisers who have a long history of opposing any change in our bipartisan foreign policy orthodoxy Obama can somehow immunize himself from criticism is logical only in a Bizarro World kind of way. In that alternate universe, where up is down and black is white, it makes perfect ’sense’ for a president to appoint people to key posts who oppose his policies. In our own world, however, such an approach would be crazy — yet it seems to be happening right before our eyes...

Fallen angel

by George Giles


During the eight dreadful years of the current administration the Democratic opposition provided no opposition at all. They sat back in awed silence as the Republicans boldly destroyed the rule of law, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the good will of the modern world. All so that a few unindicted felons could implement their vision of a ‘new world order.’ The Democrats quietly licked their wounds while drooling in anticipation of their turn. The Obama administration is promising change all right, but the only change we will see is that the man with his hand on a tiller steers a ship of state with no rudder, crashing violently about in the maelstrom of their own creation...

Obama must tread warily in Afghanistan

Cato Institute
by Malou Innocent


US president-elect Barack Obama said on Sunday, on 60 Minutes, that capturing or killing Osama bin Laden will be his top priority. He made similar commitments on the campaign trail, as when he insisted that, if given actionable intelligence, he would go after al-Qaeda hiding in the hills between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Today, the two countries are inextricably linked by a spreading Islamic insurgency. Afghanistan is in danger of a ‘downward spiral,’ according to a draft report of the National Intelligence Estimate, and hundreds, perhaps thousands, of pro-Taliban militants regularly cross Pakistan’s highly porous border with Afghanistan to attack US and NATO troops. Mr Obama will have an important opportunity to save this failing mission. But will he be better than President George W. Bush? If he sticks to his campaign pledge to deploy more troops to Afghanistan, and to take the fight into Pakistan, his policies will be a continuation — and possibly an escalation — of Mr Bush’s policies...

Gates a keeper … but Hillary at State?

Orange County Register
by Peggy Noonan


Rumors, leaks, gossip, backbiting, an air of mounting mistrust. Looks like Lulu’s back in town. The smooth Obama transition has been disrupted by the great disrupter, and one wonders: Does he really want to go there? Hasn’t he been there? How’d that go? On the face of it, the apparent offering of the secretary of state job to Hillary Clinton and her reported acceptance is a clever, interesting choice: An experienced and sophisticated workhorse with her own standing in the country, and bearing a name that is popular in the world, will be the public face of U.S. diplomacy. … But the downside is equally obvious: To invite in the Clintons — and it’s always the Clintons, never a Clinton — is to invite in, to summon, drama that will never end...

It’s 3am, and Hillary’s on the phone

The Nation
by John Nichols


O.K., so if the phone call comes at 3 a.m., Barack Obama will be able to transfer it to Hillary Clinton. At the ugliest stage of the race between Obama and Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination, the Clinton’s campaign aired a commercial featuring images of children sleeping peacefully as a soothing male voice said, ‘It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. But there’s a phone in the White House and it’s ringing. Something’s happening in the world. Your vote will decide who answers that call. …’ … But, when all was said and done, Democrats chose Obama’s more cautious and responsible approach to foreign relations over the fearmongering of Clinton and her aides. … So what has Obama done with his mandate for change?

The honeymoon is looking a bit wan

by Alexander Cockburn

Two years without a single leak and suddenly, last week, Obama’s operation was like a sieve. That’s what happens when you pick up the phone and call one of the Clintons. Or, to put it another way, that’s what happens when someone claims you, the president elect, picked up the phone and called Mrs Clinton to ask whether she’d like to be secretary of state. Out the window goes the sense of purposeful strides towards a new-look Administration. In comes a dreadful feeling that somehow we’ve slipped a dimension in the space-time continuum and are heading back into the Clinton era. A couple of more weeks and the Republicans will be calling for a special prosecutor.

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Top Scientist Rails Against Bush Hirings

Juliet Eilperin and Carol D. Leonnig, The Washington Post: "The president of the nation's largest general science organization yesterday sharply criticized recent cases of Bush administration political appointees gaining permanent federal jobs with responsibility for making or administering scientific policies, saying the result would be 'to leave wreckage behind.'"

The Price of Our Good Name

The New York Times: "Americans have watched in horror as President Bush has trampled on the Bill of Rights and the balance of power. The list of abuses that President-elect Barack Obama must address is long: once again require the government to get warrants to eavesdrop on Americans; undo scores of executive orders and bill-signing statements that have undermined the powers of Congress; strip out the unnecessary invasions of privacy embedded in the Patriot Act; block new FBI investigative guidelines straight out of J. Edgar Hoover's playbook."

The Reckoning: Citigroup Pays for a Rush to Risk

Eric Dash and Julie Creswell, The New York Times: "Even as the first shock waves of the subprime mortgage crisis hit Bear Stearns in June 2007, Citigroup's top executives expressed few concerns about their bank's exposure to mortgage-linked securities."

Citibank: Another Crisis, Another Guarantee

Floyd Norris, The New York Times: "Guarantees that could not be honored thrust the world financial system into its worst crisis since the Great Depression. Will a guarantee by the United States government finally restore confidence in the American financial system?"

Citigroup Gets $306 Billion Rescue From Government

Reuters: "The US rescued Citigroup Inc, agreeing to shoulder most losses on about $306 billion of the bank's risky assets, and inject new capital, bolstering investor hopes that the government will support big banks as the economy sinks into recession. The bailout, announced late Sunday, gives the government the right to buy an equity stake, and marks its latest effort to contain a widening financial crisis that has already brought down Bear Stearns Cos, Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc and Washington Mutual Inc."


Citigroup makes second run on bailout buffet



Citigroup Inc. will have more than $300 billion of troubled mortgages and other assets guaranteed by the U.S. government under a federal plan to stabilize the lender after its stock fell 60 percent last week. Citigroup also will get a $20 billion cash infusion from the Treasury Department, adding to the $25 billion the bank received last month under the Troubled Asset Relief Program. In return for the cash and guarantees, the government will get $27 billion of preferred shares paying an 8 percent dividend...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp


Citibank Flips The Bird To American Taxpayers

By The New York Crank

Last week, while Congress was engineering a bailout package of the taxpayers' money to rescue Citibank and save the economy, Citibank was sending out notices to its cardholders of a new and usurious policy - a policy that could drown consumers and help sink the economy.

Citizens' Economic Stimulus Plan

By Richard C. Cook

Almost nothing has been done to help the consumers within the producing economy who have lost trillions of dollars in the stock market crash, seen the value of their homes fall in many cases below what they owe on their mortgages, and lost jobs or health benefits through the escalating recession.

Next-up News Nr 744

Stop The Use Of Animals For Fur In Greece

These poor Greek dogs are still suffering. Let's try to help them by signing this petition. Thanks.


Raining death and destruction makes us culpable morally, if not physically

War, Peace, and the State

How Major US Neo-imperialist Wars End


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