Anytime Ron Paul sits across from Ben Bernanke you know sparks will fly. Sure enough, they did: starting 3 mins 50 seconds into the clip below, Ron Paul, guns blazing, asks the Chairman if he does his own shopping, if he is aware of what true inflation is, and if he knows that Americans don’t trust the government because they are being lied to about inflation. And it only gets better, once Paul starts brandishing a silver coin. The punchline: “The Fed will self-destruct anyway when the money is gone” – amen. And ironically letting the Fed keep on doing what it is doing will achieve that in the fastest possible way. In fact, letting the system cannibalize itself with no further hindrances may be the best option currently available – just go to town.
This will be one of those “one picture is worth a thousand words” posts.
A quick preface:
During Congressional testimony, Ben Bernanke defended the Fed’s FX swap lines by saying that the ECB was “well-capitalized.” So instead of spending countless words explaining why that may not be quite so, we will merely show the bank’s total assets (net of LTRO 2) and its capital and reserves (link). The adjusted balance sheet is pro forma for today’s LTRO 2, which we noted earlier will add at least €311 billion in net assets to the ECB’s balance sheet, and potentially much more. Assuming the minimum, it means the ECB’s balance sheet will now hit €3 trillion. The capital backing these assets is €82 billion across the entire Eurosystem. In other words, the ECB’s leverage is 36.6x. This according to Ben Bernanke is “well-capitalized.”
Ireland has shocked Europe with plans for a referendum on the EU’s fiscal treaty, a move that risks an unprecedented fragmentation of the eurozone and a major clash with Germany.
Premier Enda Kenny said Dublin was acting on legal advice from Ireland’s attorney-general that “on balance” the fiscal compact requires a vote under the country’s constitution. “It gives the Irish people the opportunity to reaffirm Ireland’s commitment to membership of the euro,” he told ashen-faced members of the Dail.
All three major parties back the treaty but analysts say there is a high risk of rejection by angry voters in the current fractious mood. The compact gives the EU intrusive powers to police the budgets of debtor states, and has been denounced as feudal bondage by Sinn Fein and Ireland’s vociferous eurosceptics. The Irish voted “No” to both the Nice and Lisbon treaties before being made to vote again. Dublin has ruled out a second vote this time.
Fans of Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul will rejoice upon hearing the following news: Congressman Paul (R-TX) has defeated President Barack Obama in a Rasmussen Reports daily presidential tracking poll of general election voters released Monday. This is the first time that Mr. Paul has bested Mr. Obama in a Rasmussen Reports poll. Mr. Paul garnered 43 percent of the votes among general election voters and Mr. Obama pulled 41 percent of the votes.
An archived clip of different Congressional hearings exposes the fact that the CIA directly plants stories in the media, both in the United States and the rest of the world.
Question: Do you have any people being paid by the CIA who are contributing to a major circulation journal?
Answer: We do have people who submit pieces to American journals.
Question: Do you have any people paid by the CIA who are working for television networks?
Answer: This I think gets into the details id like to get into in executive session. (so the public doesn’t hear how we control all the networks)
Considering that this was going on in the 1950s, it is highly likely that this is happening now and at a much larger extent. The CIA and other government agencies literally control the corporate controlled media.
Anytime you hear a story on the major networks that has any implication in US foreign or domestic policy rest assured that it was, at the very least, vetted by the CIA before being released.
In the early 90s CNN was also used to test Army psychological operations.
“The CIA owns everyone of any significance in the major media.” – William Colby, former CIA director
“We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.” – William Casey, CIA Director (from first staff meeting, 1981)
“Deception is a state of mind and the mind of the State.” – James Angleton, head of CIA counter intelligence from 1954-1974
“I never would have agreed to the formulation of the Central Intelligence Agency back in forty-seven, if I had known it would become the American Gestapo.” – Harry S. Truman
“The individual is handicapped by coming face-to-face with a conspiracy so monstrous he cannot believe it exists.” – J. Edgar Hoover, ex-FBI director on the New World Order conspiracy
“If the American people knew what we have done, they would string us up from the lamp posts.” – George H. W. Bush
” I will splinter the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter it into the winds.” – John F. Kennedy
“Fifty men have run America, and that’s a high figure.” – Joseph Kennedy, father of JFK, in the July 26th, l936 issue of The New York Times
“There is no such thing, at this date of the world’s history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar weekly salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth; to lie outright; to pervert; to vilify; to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press? We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities, and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.” – John Swinton, former New York Times Chief of Staff
STOCKHOLM — Chick peas, fava beans and other seeds from a facility in Syria are among the 25,000 new samples being deposited this week in an Arctic seed vault built to protect food crops from wars and natural disasters, officials said Tuesday.
The latest additions mean that the Svalbard Global Seed Vault — a master backup to the world’s other seed banks — has now secured more than 740,000 samples since it opened in a remote Norwegian archipelago in 2008.
That represents an estimated three-quarters of the biological diversity of the world’s major food crops, said Cary Fowler, executive director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, which maintains the vault with Norway’s government and the Nordic Genetic Resources Center.
With the shipment from the Syria-based International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas, almost its entire collection is now backed up in Svalbard, Fowler told The Associated Press.
“I think the events unfolding in Syria obviously underline the importance of having safety duplication outside of a country,” he said, adding the facility had not been damaged in the military crackdown on an anti-government uprising.
He noted that wars destroyed seed banks in Iraq and Afghanistan. Another one in Egypt was looted during last year’s uprising.
The Svalbard Global Seed Vault — sometimes referred to as a doomsday vault — is designed to withstand global warming, earthquakes and even nuclear strikes.
except for a few districts where rice with high level of radioactive cesium exceeding 500 becquerels/kg was found in last year’s testing.
Well why not? The government didn’t stop farmers in Fukushima from planting rice last year, right after three explosions (possibly 4, counting Reactor 2’s Suppression Chamber) at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant released 650,000 terabecquerels (iodine equivalent) of radioactive materials. They apparently told some reluctant farmers if they didn’t grow rice they wouldn’t be compensated. So the farmers in Fukushima tilled the land, mixed up the contaminated soil and poured water in the rice paddies and grew rice. If they could do it last year, surely they can do it this year, and next year, and year after next year.
Farmers in the areas where rice with radioactive cesium between 100 becquerels/kg and 500 becquerels/kg was found last year will be allowed to grow rice this year, even though the new safety limit for radioactive cesium in food will be 100 becquerels/kg starting April 1, 2012.
One of the issues that AP focuses in the article below is whether TEPCO did want to abandon the plant on March 15. The private RJIF commission sides with the Kan administration that TEPCO did, and only PM Kan’s strong word persuaded TEPCO to keep a small number of workers to continue to work on the plant.
The Pentagon’s new Avatar project, unveiled by Danger Room a few weeks back, sounds freaky enough: Soldiers practically inhabiting the bodies of robots, who’d act as “surrogates” for their human overlords in battle.
But according to Dmitry Itskov, a 31-year-old Russian media mogul, the U.S. military’s Avatar initiative doesn’t go nearly far enough. He’s got a massive, sci-fi-esque venture of his own that he hopes will put the Pentagon’s project to shame. Itskov’s plan: Construct robots that’ll (within 10 years, he hopes) actually store a human’s mind and keep that consciousness working. Forever.
“This project is leading down the road to immortality,” Itskov, who founded New Media Stars, a Russian company that runs several online news outlets, tells Danger Room. “A person with a perfect Avatar will be able to remain part of society. People don’t want to die.”
Itskov’s project, also called “Avatar,” actually precedes the Pentagon’s. He launched the initiative a year ago, but recently divulged more details to a group of futurists — including Ray Kurzweil — at a three-day conference, called Global Future 2045, held in Moscow.
OKUMA, Japan — Japan’s tsunami-hit Fukushima power plant remains fragile nearly a year after it suffered multiple meltdowns, its chief said Tuesday, with makeshift equipment — some mended with tape — keeping crucial systems running.
An independent report, meanwhile, revealed that the government downplayed the full danger in the days after the March 11 disaster and secretly considered evacuating Tokyo.
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) is a federal public health agency within the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
From the article:
“… the levels of ionizing radiation do pose a serious, long-term health effect as exposures can approach or exceed 1 rem per year for persons associated with future industrial, commercial, or residential development. Furthermore, when coupled with the possible incidental ingestion of radionuclide-contaminated sludge, these risks are increased as the radiation dose from the ionizing radiation component must be added to the radiation dose from the ingestion pathway. At this potential level of exposure the chance of leukemia, other cancers, or organ damage is greatly increased.”
Vaccine rights attorney Patricia Finn is being targeted by the Ninth Judicial District of New York State, which has threatened to strip her of her license to practice law and even file criminal charges against her. Finn is one of several “vaccine rights” attorneys across America who helps parents assert their rights to protect their children from potentially deadly vaccines. She’s considered a hero by many, but a villain by the status quo for daring to stand up against the vaccine-pimping medical police state that exists in America today.
One document described her vaccine rights advocacy as “threatening the public interest,” asserting that her helping parents legally and ethically avoid toxic vaccines somehow puts the public at risk. This accusation makes absolutely no logical sense, of course, given that even the vaccine pushers claim their vaccines offer absolute and total immunity against infectious disease. Therefore, how can an unvaccinated child ever threaten the health of a vaccinated child?
New York demands Patricia Finn surrender her list of clients
Note that removing your Web History also pauses it. Web History will remain off until you enable it again.
[UPDATE 2/22/2012]: Note that disabling Web History in your Google account will not prevent Google from gathering and storing this information and using it for internal purposes. It also does not change the fact that any information gathered and stored by Google could be sought by law enforcement.
With Web History enabled, Google will keep these records indefinitely; with it disabled, they will be partially anonymized after 18 months, and certain kinds of uses, including sending you customized search results, will be prevented. If you want to do more to reduce the records Google keeps, the advice in EFF’s Six Tips to Protect Your Search Privacy white paper remains relevant.
If you have several Google accounts, you will need to do this for each of them.
After the policy takes effect you are not allowed to opt out without abandoning Google altogether. But now before the policy takes effect, you have the option of deleting your Google Web History by modifying your settings so that Google is unable to associate data collected about you with your Gmail or YouTube accounts. Tech News Daily reports that Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco that advocates for online privacy, says: “Search data can reveal particularly sensitive information about you, including facts about your location, interests, age, sexual orientation, religion, health concerns, and more.”
EFF advises all Google users to delete their web history.
Meanwhile, Center for Digital Democracy has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, asking the Commission to sue Google to stop the policy change.
Tech News Daily reports FTC can impose fines up to $16,000 per day for violation.
Did you know that vaccinating your cat with the typical, recommended feline vaccination schedule may lead to your furry friend developing cancer? In a recent article published in The Ledger, Karri Miller, Central Florida’s only full-time board certified veterinary oncologist, admits that inflammation caused by vaccines can cause some cats to develop cancer years down the road — and yet she still recommends that people have their pets vaccinated.
A telling admission about the serious risks associated with vaccines, Miller’s report highlights the fact that at least one out of every 10,000 cats develops “vaccine-associated sarcomas” as a result of getting vaccinated. Whether it is the mandatory rabies vaccine, or the host of other viral and bacterial vaccines commonly administered to felines, vaccinated cats admittedly have an increased risk of developing cancer in response to the injections.
Vaccine task force says keep injecting cats with cancer-causing vaccines, but do so in spots that will be easy to remove tumors later
The issue has become so serious, in fact, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) developed a “Vaccine-Associated Feline Sarcoma Task Force” (VAFSTF) back in 1996 to keep track of the prevalence of the condition, and to investigate ways to help mitigate and prevent it. Besides simply not vaccinating cats at all, the only thing this task force has really come up with so far as a solution is to simply inject vaccines in different spots on cats’ bodies so that, should a tumor end up developing there, it will be easy to treat it with surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation (http://www.avma.org/vafstf/sitercmnd.asp).
In other words, vaccines will continue to cause cancer in cats, so the best way, in these experts’ minds, to address the problem is to inject vaccines in areas that will be easier for surgeons to access in the event that they have to remove a tumor at the site. Never would these experts caution cat owners against getting the harmful vaccines in the first place, of course, or at the very least reduce the number of vaccines they choose to get for their cats.
Greece’s central bank is likely to step in to smooth funding for the country’s banks after an earlier-than-expected downgrade of the nation’s credit rating prevented them from borrowing against Greek government bonds.
Greece became the first euro-zone member officially to be rated in default, 13 years after the single European currency was adopted to strengthen the European Union.
Standard & Poor’s cut Greece’s long-term credit rating to selective default from double-C. The move was expected, as S&P said this month that it would consider Greece in default if it added “collective-action” clauses to its sovereign debt, effectively forcing all bondholders to accept a bond-swap offering. …
The talking is over; it is finally happening. For the first time since World War Two, a developed nation is going into default.
That’s the significance of the events of the past 24 hours, with Greece’s debt being classified as in “selective default” and the European Central Bank banning it from its cash window. Months of planning by both banks and policymakers have gone into ensuring that Greece’s negotiated default will be a smooth painless process. We are about to find out whether that planning pays off.
Now, we shouldn’t be surprised by Standard & Poor’s decision to cut the rating on Greece’s sovereign debt from CC to SD (which stands for “selective default”). The ratings agencies had always said that, given private investors are about to lose just over half the value of their debt (through a complex bond swap), this downgrade would be a natural consequence.
Nor should we be shocked that the ECB says it will no longer accept Greek debt as collateral: in fact, the only surprise is that it’s taken this long – on the basis of the ECB’s previous policy, the bonds should have become ineligible when were first downgraded from investment status two years ago.
So far there are no dramatic consequences of the Greek default. The ECB did say they couldn’t accept it as collateral, but national central banks (including Greece’s somehow solvent NCB) can, so no real change. We will likely get a Credit Event prior to March 20th once CAC’s are used to get the deal fully done. Will the market respond much to that? Probably not, though there is a higher risk of unforeseen consequences from that, than there was from the S&P downgrade.
Two ethicists working with Australian universities argue in the latest online edition of the Journal of Medical Ethics that if abortion of a fetus is allowable, so to should be the termination of a newborn.
Alberto Giubilini with Monash University in Melbourne and Francesca Minerva at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics at the University of Melbourne write that in “circumstances occur[ing] after birth such that they would have justified abortion, what we call after-birth abortion should be permissible.”
The two are quick to note that they prefer the term “after-birth abortion“ as opposed to ”infanticide.” Why? Because it “[emphasizes] that the moral status of the individual killed is comparable with that of a fetus (on which ‘abortions’ in the traditional sense are performed) rather than to that of a child.” The authors also do not agree with the term euthanasia for this practice as the best interest of the person who would be killed is not necessarily the primary reason his or her life is being terminated. In other words, it may be in the parents’ best interest to terminate the life, not the newborns.
Abortion is largely accepted even for reasons that do not have anything to do with the fetus’ health. By showing that (1) both fetuses and newborns do not have the same moral status as actual persons, (2) the fact that both are potential persons is morally irrelevant and (3) adoption is not always in the best interest of actual people, the authors argue that what we call ‘after-birth abortion’ (killing a newborn) should be permissible in all the cases where abortion is, including cases where the newborn is not disabled.
Alberto Giubilini 1,2,
Francesca Minerva 3,4
1Department of Philosophy, University of Milan, Milan, Italy
2Centre for Human Bioethics, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
3Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
4Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics, Oxford University, Oxford, UK
MOSCOW — Russia said on Monday its secret services had thwarted a plot hatched in a Ukrainian port city by suspected militants from Chechnya to assassinate Vladimir Putin after next weekend’s presidential vote.
State television showed the two men confessing to conspiring to kill the Russian strongman in a bombing attack that was revealed to the public less than a week before Putin’s likely victory in Sunday’s election.
The plot was confirmed by Putin’s spokesman as well as the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) and its Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) counterpart, who worked jointly to break up the conspiracy.
The purported confessions showed the two men saying they acted on the orders of Chechen Islamist militant Doku Umarov — the warlord who has claimed Moscow’s deadliest airport and metro bombings in the past two years.
State television in Russia said that special forces had seized two conspirators in Odessa, southern Ukraine, after an explosion in an apartment in January.
The Chechen alleged ringleader, Adam Osmayev, 31, has reportedly confessed to planning the assassination on the orders of Doku Umarov, the emir of the Islamist insurgency against Moscow’s rule in the North Caucasus region.
MOSCOW (AP) — Vladimir Putin has accused the United States and its Western allies of supporting the Arab Spring revolts in its own interests and strongly warned against a military intervention in Syria.
Putin said in an article published Monday in the Moscow News daily that the Western push for sanctions against Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government was “cynical.” He insisted that both the government and opposition forces should pull out of cities to end bloodshed.
Putin defended a Russia-China veto of a U.N. resolution condemning Assad’s crackdown on protests, saying that Moscow wouldn’t allow the replay of what happened in Libya, where a NATO air campaign helped Libyans end Moammar Gadhafi’s regime.
He also warned strongly against any attack on Iran, saying its consequences would be “catastrophic.”
Vladimir Putin believes the US is using the issue of Iran’s nuclear program as a pretext for regime change. Meanwhile, its AMD plans for Europe is an attempt to have a monopoly on security.
“Under the guise of trying to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction they [the US] are attempting something else entirely and setting different goals – regime change,” news agencies quote Putin as saying.
Once again, if one wants to get nothing but schizophrenic noise from several momentum chasing vacuum tubes which very way may take the market to all time highs on 1 ES contract churned back and forth, by all means focus on the “market” which for the past three years is merely a policy vehicle of the monetary-fiscal fusion regime (thank you Plosser for confirming what we have been saying for years). For everyone else, here is the traditionally solid economic commentary from David Rosenberg. Considering that the central planners have pumped $7 trillion, or 50% of their balance sheet, in the stock market in the past 4 years, to offset precisely the warnings that Rosenberg issues on a daily basis, we are far beyond debating whether or not those who observe the economy realistically are right or wrong. The only question is whether the central banks can continue to expand their balance sheet at an exponential phase to offset the inevitable. Answer: they can’t.Continue reading »
Vice Adm. Alan S. Thompson became director of the Defense Logistics Agency in November 2008. As such he is responsible for providing the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and other federal agencies with a variety of logistics, acquisition and technical services in peace and war.
These services include logistics information, materiel management, procurement, warehousing and distribution of spare parts, food, clothing, medical supplies and fuel, reutilization of surplus military materiel and document automation and production.
This worldwide mission is performed by approximately 26,000 civilian and military personnel.
“Well there seems to be a kind of plate glass barrier between the people and governments now, all over the world. The governments do one thing, and the people are kept in the dark. And nowhere is this more obvious than in Japan where people are now being sacrificed to the “god of nuclear power.” There is no other way of putting it, really.”
A private weather forecasting company, weather news announced the amount of pollen in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, Saitama, Ibaraki, Tochigi and Shizuoka have gotten into the peak. On 2/27/2012, Kanto area was sunny, dry and windy, which is the best condition for pollen to fly. More amount of pollen flew toward the evening. As it gets warmer in March, the pollen amount will increase more.
Information from Children Fukushima mailing list → Today 2 of our customers told me their children’s friends died of cardiac infarct at the end of last year. They went to the same high school. One belonged to a sport club, the other one belonged to a cultural club. They hadn’t had heart disease.
A gunman has killed two American military advisers with shots to the back of the head inside a heavily guarded ministry building, and NATO has ordered military workers out of Afghan ministries as protests raged for a fifth day over the burning of copies of the Quran at a US army base.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for Saturday’s Interior Ministry attack, saying it was retaliation for the Quran burnings, after the US servicemen a lieutenant colonel and a major were found dead on the floor of an office that only people who know a numerical combination can get into, Afghan and Western officials said.
The top commander of US and NATO forces recalled all international military personnel from the ministries, an unprecedented action in the decade-long war that highlights the growing friction between Afghans and their foreign partners at a critical juncture in the war.
When in doubt – buy. When in doubt what – everything. As the chart below shows starting with the open of the US market, literally everything has been bought: stocks, bonds, crude, gold, and ‘logically’, the VIX. It took the market virtually no time to remember that when trillions in liquidity are being injected into the market courtesy of central planners, a downtick is verboten. Next up: waiting for WTI $110. Should take a few minutes at most.
LONDON—Today, Monday 27 February, WikiLeaks began publishing The Global Intelligence Files – more than five million emails from the Texas-headquartered “global intelligence” company Stratfor. The emails date from between July 2004 and late December 2011. They reveal the inner workings of a company that fronts as an intelligence publisher, but provides confidential intelligence services to large corporations, such as Bhopal’s Dow Chemical Co., Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and government agencies, including the US Department of Homeland Security, the US Marines and the US Defense Intelligence Agency. The emails show Stratfor’s web of informers, pay-off structure, payment-laundering techniques and psychological methods, for example :
“[Y]ou have to take control of him. Control means financial, sexual or psychological control… This is intended to start our conversation on your next phase” – CEO George Friedman to Stratfor analyst Reva Bhalla on 6 December 2011, on how to exploit an Israeli intelligence informant providing information on the medical condition of the President of Venezuala, Hugo Chavez.
The material contains privileged information about the US government’s attacks against Julian Assange and WikiLeaks and Stratfor’s own attempts to subvert WikiLeaks. There are more than 4,000 emails mentioning WikiLeaks or Julian Assange. The emails also expose the revolving door that operates in private intelligence companies in the United States. Government and diplomatic sources from around the world give Stratfor advance knowledge of global politics and events in exchange for money. The Global Intelligence Files exposes how Stratfor has recruited a global network of informants who are paid via Swiss banks accounts and pre-paid credit cards. Stratfor has a mix of covert and overt informants, which includes government employees, embassy staff and journalists around the world.
The material shows how a private intelligence agency works, and how they target individuals for their corporate and government clients. For example, Stratfor monitored and analysed the online activities of Bhopal activists, including the “Yes Men”, for the US chemical giant Dow Chemical. The activists seek redress for the 1984 Dow Chemical/Union Carbide gas disaster in Bhopal, India. The disaster led to thousands of deaths, injuries in more than half a million people, and lasting environmental damage.
Stratfor has realised that its routine use of secret cash bribes to get information from insiders is risky. In August 2011, Stratfor CEO George Friedman confidentially told his employees : “We are retaining a law firm to create a policy for Stratfor on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. I don’t plan to do the perp walk and I don’t want anyone here doing it either.”
Still confused why there are those who call America the USSA? Don’t be. As the following animation from the NYT so vividly shows, government benefits across the US have nearly tripled from a modest 7.8% of all personal income in 1969 to a ‘European’ 17.6% in 2009. And this before Obama went to town (as a reminder total debt has risen by over $4 trillion under Obama – a significant portion of that has gone to fund social welfare). Thus, we are confident that as of this writing, the government accounts for at least 20% and possibly as high as a quarter of all personal income. One can use any word to describe that transition depending on one’s personal political preferences, except for one: “sustainable.”
US readies for possibility of intervention without UN resolution, Asharq Al-Awsat reports, citing US military official; plan to include humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees on Turkey’s border
The Pentagon is readying for the possibility of intervention in Syria, aiming to halt Syrian President Bashsar Assad’s violent crackdown on protesters, the newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat reported Saturday, citing a US military offical.
Associated Press= KATERINI, Greece (AP) — Hammered by the financial crisis that has led to ever diminishing income, a group of residents in northern Greece have joined forces with potato farmers to slash consumer prices and ensure producers can get their crop to markets by cutting out the middle man.
Hundreds of families turned up Saturday in this northern Greek town to buy potatoes at massively reduced prices, sold directly by producers at cost price. They lined up in cars and with bicycles, on foot and with scooters to collect their bags of spuds from a truck that flung its doors wide open and was doing a roaring trade in the parking lot of a local courthouse.
Farmers say it costs about 20 cents ($0.27) to produce a kilogram (2 pounds) of potatoes, but that wholesalers will only buy them for 10-12 cents to get the crop to supermarkets, where they sell for about 60-70 cents a kilogram. Faced with making a loss, many producers say they have been unable to even get their products to the market.