The Most Important Number In The Entire U.S. Economy

The Most Important Number In The Entire U.S. Economy (Economic Collapse, Aug 1, 2013):

There is one vitally important number that everyone needs to be watching right now, and it doesn’t have anything to do with unemployment, inflation or housing.  If this number gets too high, it will collapse the entire U.S. financial system.  The number that I am talking about is the yield on 10 year U.S. Treasuries.

When that number goes up, long-term interest rates all across the financial system start increasing. When long-term interest rates rise, it becomes more expensive for the federal government to borrow money, it becomes more expensive for state and local governments to borrow money, existing bonds lose value and bond investors lose a lot of money, mortgage rates go up and monthly payments on new mortgages rise, and interest rates throughout the entire economy go up and this causes economic activity to slow down.

On top of everything else, there are more than 440 trillion dollars worth of interest rate derivatives sitting out there, and rapidly rising interest rates could cause that gigantic time bomb to go off and implode our entire financial system. We are living in the midst of the greatest debt bubble in the history of the world, and the only way that the game can continue is for interest rates to stay super low.  Unfortunately, the yield on 10 year U.S. Treasuries has started to rise, and many experts are projecting that it is going to continue to rise.

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U.S. Blasts Russian Asylum For Snowden

Furious White House Blasts Russian Asylum For Snowden (ZeroHedge, Aug 1, 2013):

The U.S. is “extremely disappointed” in the move by Russia to grant ‘temporary asylum’ to Edward Snowden, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters this morning. Carney appeared to add a threat, as the WSJ reports, he added that the Russian decision undermines law-enforcement cooperation between Moscow and Washington. Russia’s decision also threatens to derail a planned September summit in Moscow between Obama and Putin (oh to be a fly on that wall), as Carney advised “we are evaluating the utility of a summit in light of this.” Snowden’s earlier comments that “over the past eight weeks we have seen the Obama administration show no respect for international or domestic law, but in the end the law is winning,” did not help, adding that he thanks “the Russian Federation for granting  asylum in accordance with its laws and international obligations.” US politicians see it a little differently, U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-A.Z.) called the move “a disgrace and a deliberate effort to embarrass the United States.” Seems they are managing that all on their own.Via WSJ,

The U.S. is “extremely disappointed” in the move, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters, adding that the Russian decision undermines law-enforcement cooperation between Moscow and Washington.

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Decoding The NSA: How The Agency Manipulates Language To Mislead The Public

Decoding the NSA: How the Agency Manipulates Language to Mislead the Public (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 1, 2013):

When we as a species use language to communicate and engage with one another, we have a certain understanding that certain words mean certain things. That is the entire purpose of language, effective communication between human beings that can be easily understood. As a result, we should be able to assume that when government bureaucrats utilize words that are commonplace within society, that these words represent specific commonly understood meanings. That would be a huge mistake.

Jameel Jaffer and Brett Max Kaufman of the ACLU have compiled an excellent list of some commonplace words used by the NSA to mislead us into thinking they aren’t doing the bad things that they are actually doing. Words such as “surveillance,” “collect,” and “relevant.”

From Slate:

James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, has been harshly criticized for having misled Congress earlier this year about the scope of the National Security Agency’s surveillance activities. The criticism is entirely justified. An equally insidious threat to the integrity of our national debate, however, comes not from officials’ outright lies but from the language they use to tell the truth. When it comes to discussing government surveillance, U.S. intelligence officials have been using a vocabulary of misdirection—a language that allows them to say one thing while meaning quite another.

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Pakistan Bans Gold Imports For 30 Days

Pakistan Bans Gold Imports for 30 Days (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 1, 2013):

The latest buzz circulating around the gold market relates to news that Pakistan’s Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) has decided to ban duty free gold imports for thirty days. Why you ask? Because those pesky Indians are using Pakistan as a conduit to get around the country’s recent 8% duty imposed on gold imports.

All of this of course begs the question: With the price of gold “plunging” over the past several months, why did Pakistan and India both feel the need to take such draconian measures against a barbarous relic that everyone is supposedly panic selling? If there is so much gold to be had and no one wants it, what’s the problem? Strange indeed.

From the The Express Tribune:

The Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet, headed by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, took the decision to ban the import of the yellow metal for one month with immediate effect.

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XKeyscore: NSA Tool Collects ‘Nearly Everything A User Does On The Internet’

XKeyscore: NSA tool collects ‘nearly everything a user does on the internet’ (Guardian, July 31, 2013):

• XKeyscore gives ‘widest-reaching’ collection of online data
• NSA analysts require no prior authorization for searches
• Sweeps up emails, social media activity and browsing history
NSA’s XKeyscore program – read one of the presentations

A top secret National Security Agency program allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals, according to documents provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The NSA boasts in training materials that the program, called XKeyscore, is its “widest-reaching” system for developing intelligence from the internet.

The latest revelations will add to the intense public and congressional debate around the extent of NSA surveillance programs. They come as senior intelligence officials testify to the Senate judiciary committee on Wednesday, releasing classified documents in response to the Guardian’s earlier stories on bulk collection of phone records and Fisa surveillance court oversight.

The files shed light on one of Snowden’s most controversial statements, made in his first video interview published by the Guardian on June 10.

“I, sitting at my desk,” said Snowden, could “wiretap anyone, from you or your accountant, to a federal judge or even the president, if I had a personal email”.

US officials vehemently denied this specific claim. Mike Rogers, the Republican chairman of the House intelligence committee, said of Snowden’s assertion: “He’s lying. It’s impossible for him to do what he was saying he could do.”

But training materials for XKeyscore detail how analysts can use it and other systems to mine enormous agency databases by filling in a simple on-screen form giving only a broad justification for the search. The request is not reviewed by a court or any NSA personnel before it is processed.

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Soy Lecithin: Why You Need To Avoid It

Related info:

Soy Products Linked To Cancer: 4 Convincing Reasons To Cut Soy From Your Diet Today

Soy: It’s Bad For You And It’s Everywhere, Even in Vitamins! (Video)

Shocking Photos Reveal Severe Damage Caused By GM Soy And Corn. GMO Feed Turns Pig Stomachs To Mush!

Soy Milk Is Bad For You


Soy Lecithin: How It Negatively Affects Your Health And Why You Need To Avoid It (Waking Times, July 30, 2013):

Soy Lecithin has been lingering around our food supply for over a century. It is an ingredient in literally hundreds of proceesed foods, and also sold as an over the counter health food supplement. Scientists claim it benefits our cardiovascular health, metabolism, memory, cognitive function, liver function, and even physical and athletic perfomance. However, most people don’t realize what soy lecithin actually is, and why the dangers of ingesting this additive far exceed its benefits.

Lecithin is an emulsifying substance that is found in the cells of all living organisms. The French scientist Maurice Gobley discovered lecithin in 1805 and named it “lekithos” after the Greek word for “egg yolk.” Until it was recovered from the waste products of soybean processing in the 1930s, eggs were the primary source of commercial lecithin. Today lecithin is the generic name given to a whole class of fat-and-water soluble compounds called phospholipids. Levels of phospholipids in soybean oils range from 1.48 to 3.08 percent, which is considerably higher than the 0.5 percent typically found in vegetable oils, but far less than the 30 percent found in egg yolks.

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George Soros Goes Long Herbalife, Makes It “Top 3” Position

George Soros Goes Long Herbalife, Makes It “Top 3” Position (ZeroHedge, July 31, 2013):

It just keeps going form bad to worse for William Ackman. The so-called retail expert tried to diffuse the situation today by announcing a massive $2 billion position in Airgas, only for Herbalife to go right back front and center, following news moments ago from CNBC that none other than George Soros has taken a long stake in Herbalife, and not just any stake but a “top 3” position. We haven’t done the math but the float out there must be getting dangerously low for Ackman: low enough to where the Volkswagen scenario we predicted in early January (just as we predicted the imminent epic short squeeze) may finally come in play as there is not enough float to cover Ackman’s short, and certainly not when the longs decide to pull all the borrow. If and when the Ackman margin calls hit, we hope that Soros will accept shares of Airgas as deliverable.

In the meantime, the stock is up 173% since December, or when we said to go long following Whitney Tilson’s “short.”

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Student Forgotten In California Jail Cell By The DEA For 5 Days Without Food Or Water

Student Forgotten in California Jail Cell by the DEA for 5 Days Without Food or Water (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 1, 2013):

Crazy story here from late April that I hadn’t heard about before. Daniel Chong will receive a $4.1 million settlement as compensation for being forgotten about in a holding cell for 5 days without food or water. In fact, his situation became so desperate that he was forced to drink his own urine in order to survive.

While a cash payout should be part of any sort of justice for Daniel, I wonder if any of the individuals responsible for this will be held accountable? That to me is the key point. Just as bankers simply pay a fine for egregious crimes that represent only a small part of their profit from the activity (but almost never face criminal charges), so too it seems the police and government bureaucrats almost never face serious repercussions for any their actions, no matter how heinous or unconstitutional.

From the Daily Mail:

The college student forgotten in a holding cell for five days without food or water, took a $4.1 million settlement from the Justice Department his lawyer announced Tuesday.

Read moreStudent Forgotten In California Jail Cell By The DEA For 5 Days Without Food Or Water