Mar 31

How Cyprus Exposed The Fundamental Flaw Of Fractional Reserve Banking (ZeroHedge, March 31, 2013):

In the past week much has been written about the emerging distinction between the Cypriot Euro and the currency of the Eurozone proper, even though the two are (or were) identical. The argument goes that all €’s are equal, but those that are found elsewhere than on the doomed island in the eastern Mediterranean are more equal than the Cypriot euros, or something along those lines. This of course, while superficially right, is woefully inaccurate as it misses the core of the problem, which is a distinction between electronic currency and hard, tangible banknotes. Which is why the capital controls imposed in Cyprus do little to limit the distribution and dissemination of electronic payments within the confines of the island (when it comes to payments leaving the island to other jurisdictions it is a different matter entirely), and are focused exclusively at limiting the procurement and allowance of paper banknotes in the hands of Cypriots (hence the limits on ATM and bank branch withdrawals, as well as the hard limit on currency exiting the island).

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Mar 31

Cyprus President’s Family Transferred Tens Of Millions To London Days Before Deposit Haircuts (ZeroHedge, March 31, 2013):

A day after former Cypriot President Vassilou was found to be among many elite Cypriot (politicians and businessmen) who had loans written-off by the major (now insolvent) banks; it appears the rot is far fouler than expected. In a somewhat stunning (or purely coincidental) revelation, ENETEnglish reports that Cypriot newspaper Haravgi claims that current President Nicos Anastasiades’ family businesses transferred ‘dozens of millions’ from their Laiki Bank accounts to London just a week before the devastating depositor haircuts were unleashed upon his people. Of course, the denials are loud and Anastasiades has demanded an investigation into the claims; we are sure the government-selected ‘independent’ committee will be as thorough as the Libor anti-trust investigators. As a reminder, as we noted yesterday, here are Cyprus’ gun control laws.

Via EnetEnglish,

A company owned by in-laws of Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades withdrew dozens of millions from Laiki Bank on March 12 and 13, according to an article published in Cypriot newspaper Haravgi.

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Mar 31

Flashback:

How Iceland Overthrew The Banks: The Only 3 Minutes Of Any Worth From Davos (Video)

Impossible In America: ‘Executives At Collapsed Iceland Bank Jailed For Fraud’ (Reuters)

The Icelandic Success Story

Iceland’s Economy Now Growing Faster Than The U.S. And EU After Arresting The Banksters

Here Is What Happens If You Do Not Bail Out The Banksters And Avoid Getting Raped By The IMF

Two Thirds Of Icelanders Oppose EU Membership

A Lesson For Europe: Why Iceland Won’t Join The Euro (Video)

Iceland Once Again Tells IMF, UK, Netherlands To ‘Go to Hell’; ‘Ice Torture’ Repayment Scheme Collapses


Cyprus Parliament President Says “No Future” Under Troika, Calls For “Iceland” Solution (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2013):

Just last week Yiannakis Omirou, Cypriot House of Representatives President, was calling for the nation to accept it is “time for responsibility” as they progressed towards a final solution; and yet today, as Cyprus’ Famagusta reports, he believes the ‘Troika-imposed’ responsibility will, “turn Cyprus into a colony of the worst possible type.” His ‘Icelandic’ solution is to “leave the Troika and EMS behind,” to ensure “national independence, national sovereignty, moral integrity, and economic independence.” He may have a point; judging from the chart below of the Troika’s poster-child Greece, relative to Iceland, things are not going so well. As Omirou ominously concludes, “if we remain bound by the Troika and the memorandum Cyprus’ destiny is already foretold and there will be no future.”

Via Famagusta Gazette,

There is no other alternative but to free Cyprus from the bonds of the troika and the memorandum, House of Representatives President Yiannakis Omirou has said.

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Mar 31

Fusion center director: We don’t spy on Americans, just anti-government Americans (RT, March 29, 2013):

Law enforcement intelligence-processing fusion centers have long come under attack for spying on Americans. The Arkansas director wanted to clarify the truth: centers only spies on some Americans – those who appear to be a threat to the government.

In trying to clear up the ‘misconceptions’ about the conduct of fusion centers, Arkansas State Fusion Center Director Richard Davis simply confirmed Americans’ fears: the center does in fact spy on Americans – but only on those who are suspected to be ‘anti-government’.

“The misconceptions are that we are conducting spying operations on US citizens, which is of course not a fact. That is absolutely not what we do,” he told the NWA Homepage, which supports KNWA-TV and Fox 24.

After claiming that his office ‘absolutely’ does not spy on Americans, he proceeded to explain that this does not apply to those who could be interpreted as a ‘threat’ to national security. Davis said his office places its focus on international plots, “domestic terrorism and certain groups that are anti-government. We want to kind of take a look at that and receive that information.”

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Mar 31

PM set to sign China currency deal in boost to exporters (The Australian, March 30, 2013):

A CURRENCY deal enabling the Australian dollar to be converted directly into Chinese yuan, slashing costs for thousands of businesses, is set to be the centrepiece of Julia Gillard’s mission to China next weekend.

Australia would become the third country, after the US and Japan, to secure such an arrangement from China, which is Australia’s top trading partner, with exports and imports totalling $120 billion last financial year.

At present, companies doing business with China must pay the added cost of converting their Australian dollars into US dollars or yen, and then into yuan.

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Mar 31

The Federal War on Hemp (The Future of Freedom Foundation, March 28, 2013):

It is one of the earliest-known domesticated plants. It is resistant to saltwater. It doesn’t require pesticides or harsh fertilizers. For hundreds of years all the major European maritime powers needed it to maintain their fleets. Its fiber is suitable for making clothes, paper, building material, and insulation. It can be turned into biofuel and converted to biomass. Mechanical Engineering magazine once hailed it as “the most profitable and desirable crop that can be grown.” It has nutritional benefits. It can be used as animal bedding. It can be used in the production of soap and cosmetics. It is biodegradable. Rudolph Diesel designed his engine to run on its oil.

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Mar 31

The Puppet Master: Government (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2013):

It has been well and often said that only two types of “paper” money have ever existed in history – those that are already worthless and those that are going to be. Eventually, the physical pieces of paper or plastic which have been given a function as a medium of exchange by government order may remain – but their purchasing power on the market does not. The transition point always comes when the “promises to pay” on which the fiat money depends are exposed beyond the possibility of denial to be the LIES which they always were. History is replete with examples, yet very few ask the obvious question: “Pay? – WITH WHAT??” One of the great wonders of the twentieth century was the lengths to which the economics “profession” proved willing to go to avoid even facing that question let alone trying to answer it.

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Mar 31

Related info:

Cyprus: Why Big Depositors Are Facing A Complete Wipe Out

Another Non-Russian, Non-Oligarch, Non-Billionaire, Non-Tax Evader Speaks Up: ‘I Went To Sleep Friday A Rich Man, I Woke Up Poor’

TOTAL ECONOMIC COLLAPSE AWAITS CYPRUS – Caught In The Cyprus Crossfire: Small Businesses Suddenly With Zero Cash

Have The Russians Already Quietly Withdrawn All Their Cash From Cyprus? … YES!!!


Criminal Act: The European Union’s Financial Looting of Cyprus (Global Research, March 29, 2013):

The bailout imposed on Cyprus by the European Union (EU) is a politically criminal act of financial looting, aimed at destroying the country’s banks and reducing the working class to penury.

In the name of avoiding state bankruptcy, the small Mediterranean island of some one million people is being subjected to the type of shock-therapy already inflicted on Greece.

The terms of the €10 billion loan dictated by the EU, European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund include winding up Laiki bank—Cyprus’ second-largest bank—and transferring its debts to the ECB to the Bank of Cyprus, which also faces major restructuring. An additional €5.8 billion is to be raised by imposing severe penalties, of 40 percent and more, on bondholders and those with bank deposits over €100,000.

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Mar 31

Utah Sheriffs Association to Obama: From Our Cold Dead Hands (Breitbart, March 28, 2013):

As sheriffs across the nation signal opposition to enforcing additional federal gun regulations, the Utah Sheriffs’ Association sent a letter to President Obama assuring him that its members similarly will not comply.

The letters insists that the rights of Utah citizens trump any new gun control measure that Congress might pass, and sheriffs in Utah are prepared to trade their lives in defense of their constituents’ right to keep and bear arms.

The letter, signed by 28 of Utah’s 29 sheriffs, sternly rejects the citation of recent tragedies as Congress’s rationale for expanded gun regulations: Continue reading »

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Mar 31

HaPPY BaNZaI7 EaSTeR! (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2013)

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Mar 31

FYI.

Related info:

Red Alert: POLICE Disarming Citizens BY FORCE in Connecticut NOW! (Video)


California’s Gun Repo Men Have A Nerve-Racking Job (Bloomberg, March 21, 2013):

On the evening of March 5, nine agents from the California Department of Justice, wearing bulletproof vests and carrying Glock pistols, assembled outside a ranch-style house in a Los Angeles suburb. They were preparing to confiscate weapons from a gun owner who’d recently lost the right to possess firearms after spending two days in a psychiatric hospital. They knocked on the door and asked to come in. These touchy encounters sometimes end in anger and, occasionally, handcuffs. This time, the agents came out peacefully with three guns. Then it was on to the next stop on the list for that night.

California is the only state that takes legally obtained weapons away from citizens who are no longer supposed to have them. There are almost 20,000 such gun owners, state records show, including convicted felons, people under domestic violence restraining orders, or those deemed mentally unstable. “What do we do about the guns that are already in the hands of persons who, by law, are considered too dangerous to possess them?” California Attorney General Kamala Harris wrote to Vice President Biden after the shootings in Newtown, Conn. She recommended that Biden, heading a White House review of gun policy, look to California as a model.

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Mar 30

Gordon Duff is a Marine Vietnam veteran, a combat infantryman, and Senior Editor at Veterans Today. His career has included extensive experience in international banking along with such diverse areas as consulting on counter insurgency, defense technologies or acting as diplomatic representative for UN humanitarian and economic development efforts. Gordon Duff has traveled to over 80 nations. His articles are published around the world and translated into a number of languages. He is regularly on TV and radio, a popular and sometimes controversial guest.

Horror in Israel: 30,000 Mossad spies exposed (Press TV, by Gordon Duff, March 30, 2013):

Last week, the hacker organization “Anonymous,” symbolized by the famous “Guy Fawkes” mask, hacked Israel’s Mossad.

The hack, initially exposing a hidden network of 30,000 covert operatives, some openly labeled “hitman,” came only days after Israel admitted to their 2010 act of piracy and terrorism against the Freedom Flotilla.

Now the Israeli regime has filled the internet with threats against “Anonymous,” if detailed information on their terror cells is leaked.

After all, who is better to carry out acts of terrorism than an organization with 30,000 covert operatives around the world, almost all trained in use of explosives and demolition, building IEDs, car bombs, kidnapping and assassination and with a long and very public history of, not just murdering people but getting away with it as well.

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Mar 30

Who’s Next? Italy’s Monte Paschi Admits To Billions In Deposit Outflows (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2013):

It appears, given news from Italy today, that European depositors are increasingly coming to the realization that deposits in their local bank are not ‘safe’ places to put their spare cash, but are in fact loans to extremely leveraged businesses. In a somewhat wishy-washy, ‘hide-the-truth’-like statement on Monte dei Paschi’s website, the CEO admits to, “the withdrawal of several billion in deposits.” Of course, the reasons why these depositors withdrew their capital from the oldest bank in the world will never be known though of course he blames it on “reputational damage” from their derivative cheating scandal. Apparently the fact that this happened to come about six week after said scandal and the bank’s third bailout, and that the prior two bailouts did not result in such an outflow of unsecured liabilities (at least not to the public’s knowledge), was lost on the senior management, as was lost that a far greater catalyst may have been the slightly more troubling events in Cyprus in the second half of March. Unsurprisingly, as Reuters notes, the CEO declined to give a forecast on the level of deposits at the end of the first quarter of 2013; no wonder given the bank just doubled its expectations for bad loans and the ‘Cypriot Solution’ dangling over uninsured depositor hordes.

Via Reuters,

Customers’ deposits at Italian bank Monte dei Paschi fell by “a few billion euros” … the bank said in a document posted on its web site on Saturday. Continue reading »

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Mar 30

Political Fallout Begins: Former Cyprus President Named In Loan Write-Offs Leading To Banking Insolvency (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2013):

A few days ago, when news hit that Cyprus has begun investigating who the people were who had managed to pull cash out of nation’s insolvent banks, both during the capital control “blackout” period and previously, we asked “how much longer will the rule of law remain in Cyprus once full blown class warfare is unleashed, and the 99% are generously handed the list of the 1% who were “informed” enough to pull their money from the flaming sovereign equivalent of Bernie Madoff, while every other uninsured depositor is facing losses of up to 80%, and soon 100%?” We may get the answer much sooner than expected, as the first iteration of this list: one naming the beneficiaries of millions of loans written off by the now insolvent Cyprus banks and therefore indirectly responsible for the “impairment” of the banks’ depositors, was released yesterday by Greece’s daily Ethnos newspaper. But what virtually assures substantial political fallout is that among the people listed is Cyprus’ former president, George Vassiliou.

Kathimerini summarized the situation as follows:

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Mar 30

Obamacare prompts fears for low-wage workers as employers exploit the rules (Guardian, March 29, 2013):

Labour groups warn some big firms are cutting workers’ full-time hours to avoid paying health costs for those who need it most

Companies cut hours of full-time employees to avoid health care (Press TV, March 29, 2013):

Under the law that takes effect next year, large employers are exempted from contributing anything towards healthcare costs of employees who work under 30 hours a week.

For full-time workers, companies must offer affordable insurance or face steep fines. Employers seeking to dodge this responsibility could impose 29-hour ceiling on workers, Flocks says, and push many onto public insurance subsidies, straining state and federal budgets.

Three years after the passage of Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law, labor advocates are warning that it could have the unforeseen consequence of harming some of the very low-wage employees it seeks to aid.

The legislation’s incentive scheme, they say, could cause a shift toward part-time work that extends beyond companies like Papa John’s and Darden Restaurants, which last year publicized their plans to cut employee hours to avoid costs under the new law.

According to Sara Flocks, Public Policy Coordinator for the California Labor Federation, most at risk is the so-called contingent workforce: those employees with already fluctuating hours, no job security, and little power to bargain with management.

These are the workers whose hours can most easily be slashed by employers seeking to avoid paying health insurance. The Raw Story


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Mar 30

Banks Win Again As Judge Tosses Antitrust Claims In Libor Lawsuit (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2013):

With all the recent chatter about an overhaul and dismantling of Too Big To Fail banks (spoiler alert: it will never happen, but it will take a lot of theater before that is made quite clear) many can be excused for believing the balance of power has shifted away from the megabanks (and their tens of trillions in over the counter derivative “weapons of mass financial destruction” so ably facilitating the Stockholm Syndrome of global mutual assured destruction with each passing day) and in the favor of the people, represented by the legislative (the same people who are multi-millionaires mostly courtesy of endless financial lobbying) and the judicial. Continue reading »

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Mar 30

Big Government: An Unnecessary Evil That Should Be Abolished (ALT-MARKET, March 30, 2013):

There are two types of people in this world; those who worship the ideal of centralized command authority, and those who do not.  Those who value freedom regardless of risk or pain, and those who value slavery in a desperate bid to avoid risk and pain.  When I consider the ultimate folly of man, in the end I look to the meek and unquestioning masses who strive to avoid risk, because it is they who always end up feeding the machines of war, despair, and tyranny.  The power thirsty halls of elitism surely instigate and manipulate the tides of this wretched ocean of quivering souls, but ultimately, the weak-hearted and weak minded make all terrible conquests possible.

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Mar 30

I guess there are many who are monitoring this situation very closely now, because of Major Ed Dames’ predictions:


YouTube Added: 24.01.2013

Description:

Former military Major in charge of remote viewing, Ed Dames, discusses predictions of coming events.


North Korea Says It Enters “War” Against South Korea, And North Korea Kaption Kontest (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2013):

Ordinarily this would be Good Friday humor (unless we are very wrong, and it turns out to be Good Friday Global Thermonuclear War) because when one cries wolf a few too many times, this is what happens (from Yonhap):

North Korea announced Saturday that it has entered a state of war against South Korea.

In a special statement, the North said it will deal with every inter-Korean issue in a wartime manner.

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Mar 30

This Is What It Feels Like To Have Your Life Savings Confiscated By The Global Elite (Economic Collapse, March 29, 2013)

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Mar 30

Related info:

Another Non-Russian, Non-Oligarch, Non-Billionaire, Non-Tax Evader Speaks Up: ‘I Went To Sleep Friday A Rich Man, I Woke Up Poor’

TOTAL ECONOMIC COLLAPSE AWAITS CYPRUS – Caught In The Cyprus Crossfire: Small Businesses Suddenly With Zero Cash

Have The Russians Already Quietly Withdrawn All Their Cash From Cyprus? … YES!!!


And Scene: Big Cypriot Depositors Facing Complete Wipe Out (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2013):

9.9%? 30%? 60%? 80%? Nope – according to the latest from Reuters, the cash-on-cash return to all uninsured depositors in the healthy, i.e., only remaining big Cyprus bank, will be a big, fat doughnut.In what appears to be drastically worse than many had hoped (and expected), uninsured depositors in Cyprus’ largest bank stand to get no actual cash back from their initial deposit as the plan (expected to be announced tomorrow) is:

  • 22.5% of the previous cash deposit gone forever (pure haircut)
  • 40% of the previous cash deposit will receive interest (but will never be repaid),
  • and the remaining 37.5% of the previous cash deposit will be swapped into equity into the bank (a completely worthless bank that is of course.)

So, theoretically this is 62.5% haircut but once everyone decides to ‘sell’ their shares to reconstitute some cash then we would imagine it will be far greater. Furthermore, at what valuation will the 37.5% equity be allocated (we suspect a rather aggressive mark-up to ‘market’ clearing levels).

Critically though, there is no cash. None. If you had EUR150,000 in the bank last week (net of insured deposits which may well be impaired before all is said and done) you now have EUR0,000 to draw on! But will earn interest on EUR60,000 (though we do not know at what rate); and own EUR56,250 worth of Bank of Cyprus shares (the same bank that will experience the slow-burn leak of capital controlled outflows).

It seems, just as we warned, that the deposit outflow leakage that we discussed did indeed weaken the situation of the large banks significantly.

As Reuters adds, the toughening of the terms will send a clear signal that the bailout means the end of Cyprus as a hub for offshore finance and could accelerate economic decline on the island and bring steeper job losses.


Big depositors in Cyprus to lose far more than feared (Reuters, March 29, 2013):

Big depositors in Cyprus’s largest bank stand to lose far more than initially feared under a European Union rescue package to save the island from bankruptcy, a source with direct knowledge of the terms said on Friday.

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Mar 30

Betray Your Bank Before Your Bank Betrays You (Bloomberg, March 28, 2013):

What’s a Slovenian with several hundred thousand euros in the bank supposed to do? Spread it out among at least a few different banks, that’s what. Or move the money out of the country, while it’s still possible.

Imagine what must be on the minds of any savvy depositors still left at Nova Kreditna Banka Maribor d.d., now 79 percent- owned by Slovenia’s government. It was one of only four lenders in October that failed the European Banking Authority’s latest capital-adequacy test, a ritual best known for how lax its standards are. One that flunked was Bank of Cyprus Pcl, where uninsured depositors face 40 percent losses as part of the country’s bailout terms. Another was Cyprus Popular Bank Pcl, also known as Laiki Bank, where uninsured deposits will fare far worse and the bank is being shut.

Cypriot banks’ customers were complacent after uninsured deposits went unscathed in Ireland, Greece, Spain and Portugal, the first euro-area countries to seek international rescues. Slovenians won’t have that excuse should their country be next.

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Mar 30

Former MSNBC host Dylan Ratigan quits TV to run organic hydroponic farm (The Raw Story, March 20, 2013):

Former MSNBC host and author of the book Greedy Bastards Dylan Ratigan has announced that after leaving his show in June of 2012, he has re-launched his life as an organic, hydroponic farmer. In an open letter on his website DylanRatigan.com, Ratigan proclaimed that his life changed direction when he found himself burnt out by “hollow political debates” and “in search of meaning and purpose in my work and life.”

Ratigan said that it was meeting a Marine combat veteran war protester and his wife who appeared on “The Dylan Ratigan Show” in June that inspired him. The couple explained to him a technique for hydroponic farming that reportedly  uses 90 percent less water than a conventional farm, but produces three times as much food.

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Mar 30

BRICS Nations Plan New Bank to Bypass World Bank, IMF (Bloomberg, March 26, 2013):

The biggest emerging markets are uniting to tackle under-development and currency volatility with plans to set up institutions that encroach on the roles of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.

The leaders of the so-called BRICS nations — Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — are set to approve the establishment of a new development bank during an annual summit that began today in the eastern South African city of Durban, officials from all five nations say. They will also discuss pooling foreign-currency reserves to ward off balance of payments or currency crises.

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Mar 30

State Ban on UN Agenda 21 Clears Arizona Senate (The New American, March 27, 2013):

Under immense pressure from grassroots activists across the political spectrum, lawmakers in the Arizona Senate approved legislation last week that would ban the controversial United Nations “sustainable development” scheme known as UN Agenda 21 within the state. The measure in Arizona follows similar efforts in other states and comes amid increasing nationwide outrage about the international so-called “sustainability” plot, which according to UN documents aims to radically restructure human civilization under the guise of environmentalism and fighting poverty.

The legislation, S.B. 1403, is summarized in the bill as “an act prohibiting the state and its political subdivisions from recognizing the United Nations or any of its declarations as legal authority in this state.” Specifically targeted are the UN “Rio Declaration on Environment and Development” and the “Statement of Principles for Sustainable Development” adopted by dictators and national governments at the 1992 international “sustainability” summit held in Rio de Janeiro.

“Notwithstanding any other law, the state of Arizona and all political subdivisions of this state … shall not recognize the United Nations or any of its declarations as legal authority in this state,” the legislation reads, pointing out that officials are bound by their oaths to the Constitution. Political subdivisions are defined in the bill as the state, county, city, or town governments, as well as any “special districts” authorized by local officials.

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Mar 30

Related info:

Obama’s ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Bill Hands The Biotech Industry The Power To Nullify The Decisions Of Federal Courts

‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Written By Monsanto-Sponsored Senator

Outrageous Betrayal Of All Americans: President Obama Signs ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Into Law


Top 10 excuses for Obama signing the Monsanto Protection Act (Jon Rappoport’s Blog, March 28, 2013):

Yes, he signed HR 993. It was a bill funding the federal government. There was a rider in it. A Monsanto and biotech rider.

The gist of the rider is: a dangerous ghoulish GMO food crop can’t be stopped by a court order. That crop can still be grown, harvested, and sold in the US.

Isn’t that wonderful? Isn’t it grand?

250,000 people signed an emergency letter to Obama, telling him to send HR 993 back to Congress so the rider could be removed. He didn’t.

Continue reading »

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Mar 29

“I Went To Sleep Friday A Rich Man, I Woke Up Poor” (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2013):

Another non-Russian, non-oligarch, non-billionaire, non-tax-evader speaks up…

So much has been written of the Cypriot bail-ins and massive haircuts for the uninsured depositors – assumed to be nasty oligarchic Russian money-launderers – that, it appears, the reality for people living in Cyprus has been forgotten. We noted earlier the small business issues, but as the Sydney Morning Herald reports, real lives have been destroyed. 65-year-old John Demitriou retired (back) to the picturesque fishing village of Liopetri, Cyprus, with his life-savings of around $1 million living off the interest it paid from Laiki ‘Popular’ Bank and spending it on his grandchildren. He was in no hurry to invest it; to spend it on big purchases.

Then, after being told just last week by his bank manager, “there’s no problem, nothing to worry about,” he so painfully notes, “I went to bed Friday as a rich man. I woke up a poor man,” as Laiki’s depositors over EUR100,000 were devastated thanks to the bail-in. The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs notes, “there is no need for special measures,” to help John (or the other 5000 Cypriot-Australians on the island) as he exclaims, “it’s not Russian money; it’s not black money; it’s my money.”

Via Sydney Morning Herald,

”Very bad, very, very bad,’‘ says 65-year-old John Demetriou, rubbing tears from his lined face with thick fingers. ”I lost all my money.”

Continue reading »

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Mar 29

You can’t make this stuff up!


ECB Backs Dijsselbloem’s Liquidation Policy “Template” (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2013):

It appears the European Central Bank is having trouble keeping its lies straight. When Jeroen Dijsselbloem (“Diesel-BOOM”, “D-Boom”, or just “Diesel”) made his now infamous “template” comment last week, reality was shattered for many trend-following, momentum-monkey, hope-and-dreamers that actual real monetary pain could exist for a bank that was entirely incompetent (and insolvent). Instantly the rest of Europe stepped up to deny-deny-deny (as did D-Boom himself) explaining this was a ‘unique’ situation with French ECB Director Benoît Coeuré explicitly stating that Cyprus is not a model for future bank rescues.

However, as Reuters reports, it appears fellow-Dutchman and ECB Governing Council member Klaas Knot said last night that there was “little wrong” with J-Boom’s comment and that “the content of his remarks comes down to an approach which has been on the table for a longer time in Europe. This approach will be part of the European liquidation policy. Further confirming D-Boom’s perspective, Knot added that, “there has to be transparency about losses in the banking sector… and banks have to wind down their loss-making operations.”

It seems that in 2012 the ECB split was between the Germans and Draghi on unlimited inflation threats; in 2013 it will be between those who want bail-ins and bail-outs.

Via Reuters,

European Central Bank Governing Council member Klaas Knot said on Friday there was “little wrong” with Eurogroup chair Jeroen Dijsselbloem’s recipe for dealing with future euro zone banking crises, a newspaper reported. Continue reading »

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Mar 29

Caught In The Cyprus Crossfire: Small Businesses Suddenly With Zero Cash (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2013):

One of the prevailing false conventional wisdoms about the Cypriot cash confiscation is that it primarily affected rich, tax-evading individuals of Russian origin. Alas, those same individuals are likely to have been least affected, as subsequent discoveries of capital control breaches by the “richest and best connected” reveal, while increasingly it appears that the uninsured depositors on whose back the nation of Cyprus was bailed out are small and medium corporations, who had been parking cash for net working capital purposes with Cyprus’ banks, cash which is now gone forever to feed the creeping insolvent Euro-monster, and which can’t be used to fund such day to day business activities as payroll, purchases, and business operations.

Such as this one:

The most of circulating assets on our business Current Account are blocked.

Over 700k of expropriated money will be used to repay country’s debt. Probably we will get back about 20% of this amount in 6-7 years.

I’m not Russian oligarch, but just European medium size IT business. Thousands of other companies around Cyprus have the same situation.

The business is definitely ruined, all Cypriot workers to be fired.

We are moving to small Caribbean country where authorities have more respect to people’s assets. Also we are thinking about using Bitcoin to pay wages and for payments between our partners.

Special thanks to:

– Jeroen Dijsselbloem
– Angela Merkel
– Manuel Barroso
– the rest of officials of “European Comission”

So while Cypriots may have been quite cool and collected during yesterday’s bank reopening when the Troika was kind enough to give them access to €300 of their cash per day, one wonders just how cool and collected they will be when the implications of the cash crunch spread through the system, when hundreds of small and medium business are forced to lay everyone off overnight, when paychecks suddenly stop and when not only savings but ongoing cash grinds to a halt.

Because if the locals thought the deposit haircut is the worst of it, just wait until the full brunt of what a -20% depressionary collapse in the economy hits them head on.

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Mar 29

“Yes, President Obama really did sign the “Monsanto Protection Act” into law earlier this week. It grants Monsanto and the entire biotech industry the power to nullify federal courts, even when those courts determine that particular GMO crops may be dangerous to human health or the environment.
The signing of this bill by Obama is widely seen as the “ultimate betrayal” by progressives and those on the political left. If Obama won’t take a stand against Monsanto, what does he stand for at all?”

– Mike Adams (Natural News)

Related info:

‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Written By Monsanto-Sponsored Senator

Outrageous Betrayal Of All Americans: President Obama Signs ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Into Law


Obama’s signing of Monsanto Protection Act proves he will betray progressives, too (Natural News, March 29, 2013):

The internet has erupted into a fury over Obama’s signing of the so-called “Monsanto Protection Act,” a rider to a federal appropriations bill that hands Monsanto the power to nullify the decisions of federal courts. If the courts decide that a genetically engineered crop is dangerous to the public or the environment, it can no longer order Monsanto (or any other company) to stop planting the crops. Instead, the law mandates the Secretary of Agriculture to issue permits and deregulation orders that allow the “continued cultivation, commercialization and other specifically enumerated activities” even if a crop is deemed to be causing a plague or unleashing dangerous genetic pollution.

The actual language of the bill is barely-recognizable lawyerspeak, of course, but it’s not difficult to see how it will be interpreted by a federal government which routinely conspires with Monsanto and the biotech industry to sneak GMOs into the food supply. To read the bill language yourself, visit:
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-113hr933enr/pdf/BILLS-113hr933enr….
… and search for “735.” (Thanks to Anthony Gucciardi for finding this link.)

Activism holds politicians accountable

The backlash against the rider melded the efforts of numerous activist organizations, including Food Democracy Now, the Center for Food Safety, the Institute for Responsible Technology, the Organic Consumers Association and many more. It resulted in hundreds of thousands of petition signatures, protests outside the White House, and tens of millions of people learning the truth about how Obama has betrayed his own support base yet again.

That’s the real political impact of this: Obama’s own actions now prove he will betray progressives and democrats on the issues that matter to them, too. The GMO issue is a super-hot topic on the political left. Anyone who conspires with Monsanto is instantly — and justifiably — branded a “sellout” and a traitor to the People. This is why companies like Kashi, a cereal manufacturer that uses GMOs but doesn’t label its products as containing GMO, is feeling tremendous heat from the GMO labeling boycott efforts. Informed consumers are outright punishing any company, politician or media organization that allies itself with the interests of Monsanto.

That list now clearly includes Obama himself. By signing this into law, he betrayed America and granted Monsanto and the biotech industry unprecedented power over federal courts. He essentially took away the power of the government to halt the continued growing and commercialization of dangerous genetically engineered crops. And he got caught doing so. Continue reading »

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Mar 29

Related info:

Outrageous Betrayal Of All Americans: President Obama Signs ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Into Law:

“In an outrageous betrayal of all Americans, President Obama just signed the so-called “Monsanto Protection Act” into law.

This law gives Monsanto authority over federal courts and allows it to plant experimental GMO crops even if they pose an extreme risk to human health and environmental health.”



US President Barack Obama (AFP Photo / Brendan Smialowsky)

Obama signs ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ written by Monsanto-sponsored senator (RT, March 28, 2013):

United States President Barack Obama has signed a bill into law that was written in part by the very billion-dollar corporation that will benefit directly from the legislation.

On Tuesday, Pres. Obama inked his name to H.R. 933, a continuing resolution spending bill approved in Congress days earlier. Buried 78 pages within the bill exists a provision that grossly protects biotech corporations such as the California-based Monsanto Company from litigation.

Continue reading »

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Mar 29

Russia Is Next In Line To Restrict Cash Transactions (ZeroHedge, March 28, 2013):

The Russians are taking a page from the Europeans book (and not a positive one for libertarians). Given the substantial criminal activity and illegal entrepreneurship in Russia – the grey and black economies account for 50–65 percent of GDP and estimates that about $50 billion was taken out of Russia illegally in 2012 alone – the great and glorious leaders have decided to impose restrictions on cash transactions. As Russia Beyond The Headlines reports, Russia may ban cash payments for purchases of more than 300,000 rubles (around $10,000) starting in 2015 – starting with a higher ($19,500) restriction in 2014. They will also enforce mandatory cash-free salary payments (cash compensation accounts for 15% of GDP currently) in an effort to both bring some of the population’s ‘grey’ income out of the shadow; and increase the volume of cash reserves in the banks. It would appear that wherever we look now, leadership are realizing that the limits of fiscal and monetary policy have been reached and now changing rules, limiting freedom, and outright confiscation are the only way to maintain a status quo. Ironic really, when the enforcement of said rules may just be the catalyst for the end of the status quo as the middle class suffers. Continue reading »

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Mar 29

Oooops… (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2013)

After reading this memo from the Central Bank of Cyprus sent to bank CEOs on February 11, arguably to put them at ease, all we can say is “Oooops”…

We’ll ignore the contents of the memo, including such statements that “restricting the property rights of depositors” is unconstitutional – that is after all for the people of Cyprus to opine on (we did however have a hearty laugh upon learning that there is a European Convention of Human Rights),

As for the FT article referenced? The following, from February 10, which references a “confidential memo” which foretold the events from two weeks ago with absolute precision :

Continue reading »

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Mar 28

It Can Happen Here: The Confiscation Scheme Planned for US and UK Depositors (Web Of Debt, by Ellen Brown March 28, 2013):

Confiscating the customer deposits in Cyprus banks, it seems, was not a one-off, desperate idea of a few Eurozone “troika” officials scrambling to salvage their balance sheets. A joint paper by the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Bank of England dated December 10, 2012, shows that these plans have been long in the making; that they originated with the G20 Financial Stability Board in Basel, Switzerland (discussed earlier here); and that the result will be to deliver clear title to the banks of depositor funds.

New Zealand has a similar directive, discussed in my last article here, indicating that this isn’t just an emergency measure for troubled Eurozone countries. New Zealand’s Voxy reported on March 19th:

The National Government [is] pushing a Cyprus-style solution to bank failure in New Zealand which will see small depositors lose some of their savings to fund big bank bailouts . . . .

Open Bank Resolution (OBR) is Finance Minister Bill English’s favoured option dealing with a major bank failure. If a bank fails under OBR, all depositors will have their savings reduced overnight to fund the bank’s bail out.

Can They Do That?

Continue reading »

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Mar 28

Cyprus-Style Bank Account Confiscation Is In The New 2013 Canadian Government Budget! (Economic Collapse, March 28, 2013):

The politicians of the western world are coming after your bank accounts.  In fact, Cyprus-style bank account confiscation is actually in the new Canadian government budget.  When I first heard about this I was quite skeptical, so I went and looked it up for myself.  And guess what?  It is right there in black and white on pages 144 and 145 of “Economic Action Plan 2013” which the Harper government has already submitted to the House of Commons.  This new budget actually proposes “to implement a ‘bail-in’ regime for systemically important banks” in Canada.  “Economic Action Plan 2013” was submitted on March 21st, which means that this “bail-in regime” was likely being planned long before the crisis in Cyprus ever erupted.  So exactly what in the world is going on here?  In addition, as you will see below, it is being reported that the European Parliament will soon be voting on a law which would require that large banks be “bailed in” when they fail.  In other words, that new law would make Cyprus-style bank account confiscation the law of the land for the entire EU.  I can’t even begin to describe how serious all of this is.  From now on, when major banks fail they are going to bail them out by grabbing the money that is in your bank accounts.  This is going to absolutely shatter faith in the banking system and it is actually going to make it far more likely that we will see major bank failures all over the western world.

What you are about to see absolutely amazed me when I first saw it.  The Canadian government is actually proposing that what just happened in Cyprus should be used as a blueprint for future bank failures up in Canada. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

The Definitive Cyprus Bailout Infographic (ZeroHedge, March 28, 2013):

Everything you wanted to know about the ‘unique, exceptional, non-template, toolbox-of-blueprint-instruments’ bailout of Cyprus but were afraid to read more than 100 words. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

Mexican Vigilantes Seize Town, Arrest Police (Huffington Post/AP, March 27, 2013):

ACAPULCO, Mexico — Hundreds of armed vigilantes have taken control of a town on a major highway in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero, arresting local police officers and searching homes after a vigilante leader was killed. Several opened fire on a car of Mexican tourists headed to the beach for Easter week.

Members of the area’s self-described “community police” say more than 1,500 members of the force were stopping traffic Wednesday at improvised checkpoints in the town of Tierra Colorado, which sits on the highway connecting Mexico City to Acapulco. They arrested 12 police and the former director of public security in the town after a leader of the state’s vigilante movement was slain on Monday.

Continue reading »

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Mar 28

Twitter Caves to Vladimir Putin, Censors Content Within Russia (PJ Media, March 27, 2013):

If you have been following the Internet crackdown underway in Russia, you will not be surprised to learn that Vladimir Putin’s Kremlin has recruited many websites — which are either terrified of his wrath or interested in currying his favor — to help crush and eradicate criticism of his government online.

However, you may be surprised to learn that one of those websites is Twitter.

The Moscow Times reported last week that — according to the Kremlin itself — for the past several weeks Twitter has been blocking Russian access to any tweets designated by the Kremlin as “extremist.” Twitter has also deleted at least one user account at the Kremlin’s request.

On its applicable agency website (known by its acronym Roskomnadzor), the Kremlin praises Twitter’s management team for its “constructive position” in reconfiguring its website in a manner “acceptable to Russian side.”

Here is the full Kremlin statement, via Russian wire service Interfax: Continue reading »

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Mar 28

FBI Pursuing Real-Time Gmail Spying Powers as “Top Priority” for 2013 (Slate, March 26, 2013):

Despite the pervasiveness of law enforcement surveillance of digital communication, the FBI still has a difficult time monitoring Gmail, Google Voice, and Dropbox in real time. But that may change soon, because the bureau says it has made gaining more powers to wiretap all forms of Internet conversation and cloud storage a “top priority” this year.

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Mar 28

Russian Authorities Raid Amnesty International Office (New York Times, March 25, 2013):

MOSCOW — The Russian authorities on Monday raided the local headquarters of the human rights group Amnesty International, the latest in a continuing series of office searches intended to put pressure on nongovernmental groups.The head of Amnesty’s office in Russia, Sergei Nikitin, said in a telephone interview that officials from the general prosecutor’s offices and from the tax police arrived unannounced on Monday morning to conduct what they described as an “audit” and demanded a list of documents, most of which Mr. Nikitin said were already on file with the government.

Continue reading »

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Mar 28

Suffering of the lambs: Thousands freeze to death in snow as forecasters warn of more to come (DailyMail, March 26, 2013)

 

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