A Feb 2013 article in Clinical Endocrinology declares “More Good News!!” on Selenium and the Thyroid.(1) They go on to state,
“In patients with Hashimoto’s disease and in pregnant women with anti-TPO antibodies, selenium supplementation decreases anti-thyroid antibody levels and improves the ultrasound structure of the thyroid gland.“ Continue reading »
Once upon a time, when then-NY Fed chief Tim Geithner was angling for a Senate confirmation which would make him Treasury Secretary, things got a bit tense when it was discovered that Geithner failed to pay Medicare and Social Security taxes on the income he earned while working for the IMF from 2001-2004. Basically, Geithner was classified as “self employed” and was thus responsible for making the payments himself but didn’t do so, which led to some $17,000 in unpaid taxes in 2003 and 2004. Geithner had previously paid more than $20,000 in back taxes to make up for missed payments in 2001 and 2002, so one might have thought he would check on 2003 and 2004 as well, but apparently some accountant somewhere screwed up — or so the story goes.
In any event, it now appears as though Hillary Clinton may be witnessing her “Geithner moment,” because as Reuters reports, several Clinton family charities will now refile a half decade worth of returns after failing to report “tens of millions” in contributions from foreign governments. Here’s more:
Hillary Clinton’s family’s charities are refiling at least five annual tax returns after a Reuters review found errors in how they reported donations from governments, and said they may audit other Clinton Foundation returns in case of other errors…Continue reading »
As the Russians gradually assumed control of Uranium One in three separate transactions from 2009 to 2013, Canadian records show, a flow of cash made its way to the Clinton Foundation. Uranium One’s chairman used his family foundation to make four donations totaling $2.35 million. Those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clintons, despite an agreement Mrs. Clinton had struck with the Obama White House to publicly identify all donors. Other people with ties to the company made donations as well.
And shortly after the Russians announced their intention to acquire a majority stake in Uranium One, Mr. Clinton received $500,000 for a Moscow speech from a Russian investment bank with links to the Kremlin that was promoting Uranium One stock.
Whether the donations played any role in the approval of the uranium deal is unknown. But the episode underscores the special ethical challenges presented by the Clinton Foundation, headed by a former president who relied heavily on foreign cash to accumulate $250 million in assets even as his wife helped steer American foreign policy as secretary of state, presiding over decisions with the potential to benefit the foundation’s donors.
If you looked at the U.S. economy under a microscope, what you’d see is a gigantic cancerous blob of cronyism surrounded by tech startups and huge prisons. If you zeroed in on the cancerous tumor, at the nucleus you’d see a network of crony institutions like the Federal Reserve, intelligence agencies, TBTF Wall Street banks and defense contractors. Pretty close to that, you’d probably find the Clinton Foundation. A veritable clearinghouse for cronyism masquerading as a charity. Continue reading »
A U.S. drone strike in January targeting a suspected al Qaeda compound in Pakistan inadvertently killed an American and Italian being held hostage by the group, senior Obama administration officials said. As WSJ reports, the killing of American development expert Warren Weinstein and Italian aid worker Giovanni Lo Porto is the first known instance in which the U.S. has accidentally killed a hostage in a drone strike. We await President Obama’s ‘collateral damage’ explanation.
The mishap represents a major blow to the Central Intelligence Agency and its covert drone program in Pakistan, which President Barack Obama embraced and expanded after coming to office in 2009.
The incident also underscores the limits of U.S. intelligence and the risk of unintended consequences in executing a targeted killing program which, according to human rights groups, endangers civilians. U.S. officials say the strikes are needed to combat al Qaeda. To mitigate the risks, officials say the CIA won’t launch missiles at a suspected target if they know civilians are present. Continue reading »
What’s so shocking about the story below is not that a 20-year veteran of the Houston police force, who was previously named one of the “Officers of the Year” by the Officers Union, was trafficking weapons for drug cartels. What’s shocking is that he was actually indicted and faces life in prison. He should’ve worked for a federal agency like the DEA or TSA, in which case he might not have even been fired. For example: Continue reading »
If enough people truly believe that things will get better, will that actually cause them to get better? There is certainly something to be said for being positive and thinking that anything is possible. And as Americans, optimism seems to come naturally for us.
However, no amount of positive thinking is ever going to turn the sun into a block of wood or turn the moon into a block of cheese. Any good counselor will tell you that one of the first steps toward recovery is to stop being delusional and to come to grips with how bad things really are.
When we deny reality and engage in irrational wishful thinking, we are engaging in something called “hopium”. This is a difficult term to define, but the favorite definition of hopium that I have come across so far goes like this: “The irrational belief that, despite all evidence to the contrary, things will turn out for the best.” Continue reading »
There are several notable items in Bloomberg’s comprehensive overnight summary of the epic humiliation America’s market regulators are about to undergo, complete with yet another round of theatrical Congressional kangaroo courts, which will lead to a lot of red faces, a wrist slap or two and maybe even the termination of one or two lowly employees and… nothing else.
Because what difference does it make?
At this point only a bottom-up overhaul can “fix” the fragmented, broken market which by definition can only come after the next market crash, one which will promptly be blamed on HFTs (which leaving the central bankers unscathed).
Back to the Bloomberg piece in which we first discover that it wasn’t even the CFTC that, 5 years later, “figured out” the flash crash was one person’s fault: Continue reading »
Following the CEO’s comments that over 100,000 energy jobs will be lost this year, an executive with Weatherford International – the fifth largest US fracker – has warned half of the 41 fracking companies operating in the U.S. will be dead or sold by year-end because of slashed spending by oil companies. “We go by and we see yards are locked up and the doors are closed,” said Rob Fulks, seemingly confirming what Weatherford CEO Duroc-Danner said earlier in the year, “we’re now confronted with an unusually severe market contraction.”Continue reading »
Earlier today we brought you the story of Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Abraham Martinez, whose flying jumpkick has now been officially enshrined in the annals of police dash cam history. As it turns out, we have The Austin American Statesman to thank for the footage. The newspaper recently took an in-depth look at the Texas DPS’ use of force during pursuits. Here’s an excerpt:
The trooper who shot and kicked him, Abraham Martinez, last year received a minor penalty for the incident — three days off without pay. Yet the fact that a traffic infraction could escalate into a lengthy, high-speed motorcycle pursuit ending in gunshots provides a graphic illustration of how a relatively permissive DPS culture of use-of-force during pursuits is out of step with evolving national standards, experts said. A leading researcher on police pursuits, University of South Carolina criminal justice professor Geoffrey Alpert, called the agency’s policy permitting troopers to shoot at fleeing vehicles “stupid.”Continue reading »
“Fed has created abnormal market conditions by printing money and keeping interest rates low. Investors are looking for growth anywhere they can find it and tech companies are good targets – at these values, however, all tech stocks are expensive – even looking at 5+ years of revenue growth down the road. This means that most value-driven investors have left the market and the remaining 5-10%+ increase in market value will be driven by momentum investors. At some point there won’t be any momentum investors left buying at higher prices, and the market begins to tumble. May be 10-20% correction or something more significant, especially in tech stocks.”
Back in December, following the Sony email leak, the world was granted a second (again uninvited) glimpse into the private life and thoughts of the person who had previously suffered another email leak, this time exposing his fraternity days explots: Snapchat founder and CEO Evan Spiegel.
And while many have been quick to mock Spiegel for some of his boyish ways, the reality is that the not only is the 24-year-old the world’s youngest billionaire, but he has quickly won the admiration of Silicon Valley’s brand names like Twitter CEO Dick Costolo who has said “I really think he is one of the best product thinkers out there right now.” Continue reading »
New Yorker, Apr 21, 2015 (emphasis added): [A]n ongoing outbreak of a sea-star wasting disease… has killed millions of starfish… It’s the greatest wildlife mass-mortality event, or “die-off,” of the present day… Online, speculation about the cause of the die-off soon focussed [sic] on radiation from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear-power plant… [Pete Raimondi, principal investigator with a research group studying the disease] recalled a phone call in which a fearful soon-to-be father asked whether he should immediately move his family away from the West Coast. It was one of many similarly heartfelt calls. Researchers have found no evidence of a link between the ongoing Fukushima disaster and the starfish die-off,.. Many members of the public remain unconvinced… sea stars are known to be maritime canaries-in-the-coal-mine: “They’re always the first ones to go,” Raimondi said.
Santa Cruz Sentinel, Apr 6, 2015: [A] mysterious disease has melted millions of sea stars… This current epidemic has wiped out at least 20 different species of starfish, Raimondi said.
Dr. Ben Miner, Western Washington Univ., Jan 22, 2015 (35:45 in): “The numbers of stars that have died are probably — reasonable estimates of hundreds of millions. I think at this point most scientists are pretty comfortable saying that it’s the largest mass mortality ever associated with a disease ever recorded. [It’s] quite frightening… Patterns we initially saw and subsequent to that — and some other data — strongly suggests that it has nothing to do with Fukushima, though that was something that was very commonly reported in the media.” Continue reading »
If you didn’t know any better you might think “Grimbo” was a new Sesame Street character. Far from being the name of something that brings smiles to the faces of young children however, it’s actually the latest one-word take on the likely outcome of Greece’s protracted, painful negotiations with creditors, which will continue tomorrow in Riga where progress is, according to pretty much everyone that will be involved, unlikely. The new term follows in the footsteps of the classic (but now tired) “Grexit” and its underrated predecessor “Graccident,” and refers to two of the four outcomes Citi imagines are possible in the unfolding Greek drama. Here, via Citi, are the scenarios that would constitute Grimbo: Continue reading »
The record-breaking volcanic eruption in southern Chile is dramatically altering skies, as spectacular views emerge of white plumes creeping miles up into the sky after coloring the night orange. A second blast took place hours ago.
Nature’s colossal power was aptly demonstrated by Calcubo, which erupted a second time just a few hours ago, with agencies reporting a stronger eruption than the first.
An electrical storm mixed with the raging spurts of lava overnight to create what looked like the jaws of hell opening to swallow the surrounding landscape.
AFP Photo / David Cortes
In scenes reminiscent of the movie Independence Day, white mushroom disks adorned the daytime skies, slowly claiming the city of Puerto Varas for their own.
Saudi Arabia’s billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal tweeted an unexpected message for the 100 fighter pilots involved in airstrikes against Yemen – each would be awarded a Bentley. The tweet, which was later deleted, sparked anger online.
“I congratulate our wise leaders on the victory of Operation Decisive Storm and the beginning of Operation Restoring Hope,” bin Talal appeared to tweet on Tuesday. It followed an announcement of a new phase in the Saudi-led campaign in Yemen.
“To recognize the one hundred participating Saudi pilots I am pleased to present them with 100 Bentley cars,” he said, according to screenshots of the message.
But the fighter pilots couldn’t allow themselves to get too excited, because the tweet was later deleted without explanation. Some Saudi Arabian reports suggest the prince’s account was hacked, though this has not been confirmed. Continue reading »
As regular readers are no doubt aware, there’s been no shortage of “caught on tape” police moments over the past several months. Thanks to police cruiser dash cam video, bystander cell phone recordings, and in one case, aerial footage from a local San Bernardino news helicopter we’ve witnessed a South Carolina police officer shoot a fleeing, unarmed man in the back, watched as Arizona officers battled an invincible family band in a Wal-Mart parking lot, looked on incredulous as a US Marshall destroyed a citizen’s cell phone, and followed Sheriff’s Deputies through the desert as they chased (and subsequently beat) a man who fled on a stolen horse.
Today we bring you the following clip (circa 2012) from Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Abraham Martinez’s dash cam. Martinez was pursuing one Steven Gaydos whose crime was running a stop sign while driving a motorcycle on a suspended license and carrying two percocets in his pocket. After a high speed chase Martinez apparently decided to “disable” the bike by shooting it four times but unfortunately ended up shooting Gaydos instead. Realizing he was shot in the thigh Gaydos appears to pull over with the intent to surrender when, completely inexplicably, Martinez executes a running jumpkick to Gaydos’ midsection.
Apparently shooting a Texas motorcyclist in the thigh during a high-speed chase wasn’t enough for one state trooper, who ended up performing a leaping kick into the man’s lower body after eventually pulling him over.
We’ve spent quite a bit of time recently discussing the fact that China faces tough choices as Beijing attempts to counter decelerating economic growth while maintaining a peg to what has lately been one of the world’s strongest currencies. With pressure coming from four consecutive quarters of capital outflows totaling some $300 billion, devaluation is a somewhat risky (if inevitable) proposition and so the PBoC has opted for interest rate and RRR cuts to keep liquidity flowing into the economy.
But even as the reserve requirement cut freed up more than a trillion yuan, policymakers must also grapple with competing agendas such as deleveraging a system that, as we exposed more than two years ago, and as Bloomberg now reports, is weighed down by a veritable mountain of debt.
China has a $28 trillion problem. That’s the country’s total government, corporate and household debt load as of mid-2014, according to McKinsey & Co. It’s equal to 282 percent of the country’s total annual economic output.Continue reading »
“He told me that I had to go. He said I was interfering with their investigation and I told [him] that I was on a public sidewalk and I had the right to film them..”And then this happened…
As MyFOXLA reports,
Beatriz Paez says she was doing nothing wrong taking video of U.S. Marshal executing warrants on San Juan Avenue Sunday. She saw people in handcuffs. “Around 8 people including women were held at gunpoint on their stomachs with their hands held behind their back,” says Paez. Continue reading »