Mar 28

Pentagon loses track of equipment

- True Story – U.S. Military Lost Equipment from $750 Million Program, Some Ended up on eBay and Craigslist (Liberty Blitzkrieg, March 26, 2015):

The Pentagon lost track of sensitive equipment from a $750 million program to help U.S. soldiers spot roadside bombs — and some of it wound up for sale on eBay, Craigslist and other websites, according to a Navy intelligence document obtained by The Intercept.

The report went on to state that “more than 32,000 pieces of equipment were issued” under the program, and the items “are NOT for civilian use and are controlled under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations.” The devices went missing because the military units had poor control over equipment distributed to them, according to the intelligence brief.

JIEDDO has been heavily criticized over the years for expending large sums of money without attaining clear results. According to a 2012 report by the Government Accountability Office, JIEDDO had spent over $18 billion yet lacked an effective way to oversee its programs.

– From the Intercept article: Sensitive Military Gear Ended Up on eBay, Craigslist

Another day, another example of the inconceivable incompetence of the U.S. government.

Just yesterday, I published a post titled, Can’t Make This Up – U.S. Providing Aid in Fight Against ISIS in Iraq Alongside Iranian Troops. Here’s an excerpt in case you missed it: Continue reading »

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Mar 28

Geopolitical Relationships In The Middle East

(Click on image to enlarge.)

 Source: @KarlRemarks

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Mar 28

- Police Gas Student Protesters In Quebec (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015):

Earlier this week we reported that the Blockupy movement — supporters of which set fire to the streets of Frankfurt earlier this month in an anti-austerity protest timed to coincide with the grand opening of the ECB’s new headquarters — had apparently spread across the Atlantic to the streets of Montreal where students describing themselves as “an association of young communists and anti-capitalists” got tear gassed, sound bombed, and shot with rubber bullets after they failed to provide police with an itinerary as to what they planned to vandalize and when.

Just days later and aggrieved Canadian students are at it again, this time in Quebec City where hundreds gathered to protest austerity measures like shorter library hours. Here’s more from RT News:

Students in Quebec City were sprayed with tear gas by Canadian police after holding an ‘illegal’ gathering to protest the provincial budget. A brief scuffle broke out before law enforcement officers began randomly gassing the demonstrators. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

FYI.


As a Saudi-led coalition wades into the fight for Yemen – currently under siege from Houthi rebels who are backed by Iran
As a Saudi-led coalition wades into the fight for Yemen – currently under siege from Houthi rebels who are backed by Iran – Robert Fisk examines the much wider-reaching repercussions of this escalating conflict

- The battle for the Middle East’s future begins in Yemen as Saudi Arabia jumps into the abyss (Independent, March 27, 2015):

Saudi Arabia has jumped into the abyss.

Its air attacks on Yemen are a historic and potentially fatal blow to the Kingdom and to the Middle East.

Who decided that this extraordinary battle should take shape in the poorest of Arab nations? The Saudis, whose King is widely rumoured in the Arab world to be incapable of taking decisions of state? Or the princes within the Saudi army who fear that their own security forces may not be loyal to the monarchy? Continue reading »

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Mar 28

- Australia outlaws warrant canaries (Boing Boing, March 26, 2015):

The exceptionally broad new surveillance bill lets the government do nearly unlimited warrantless mass surveillance, even of lawyer-client privileged communications, and bans warrant canaries, making it an offense to “disclose information about the existence or non-existence” of a warrant to spy on journalists.

Despite that move away from retaining communications metadata by the EU and continuing concerns in the US about the National Security Agency’s bulk phone metadata spying program, the Australian government was able to push through the amendments implementing data retention thanks to the support of the main opposition party. Labor agreed to vote in favor of the Bill once a requirement to use special “journalist information warrants” was introduced for access to journalists’ metadata, with a view to shielding their sources. No warrant is required for obtaining the metadata of other classes of users, not even privileged communications between lawyers and their clients. Even for journalists, the extra protection is weak, and the definition of what constitutes a journalist is rather narrow—bloggers and occasional writers are probably not covered. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

H/t reader M.G.:

“Here are more greedy gut corporations backing a movement to gut worker’s compensation……….disgusting. I would expect this of Walmart, but Nordstrom? I was surprised. Time for boycotting them, too…….as much as I love Nordstrom shoes……….”


Dark, Ominous Clouds Promise Rain and poor Weather.

- Walmart, Lowe’s, Safeway, and Nordstrom Are Bankrolling a Nationwide Campaign to Gut Workers’ Comp (Mother Jones, March 26, 2015):

Nearly two dozen major corporations, including Walmart, Nordstrom, and Safeway, are bankrolling a quiet, multistate lobbying effort to make it harder for workers hurt on the job to access lost wages and medical care—the benefits collectively known as workers’ compensation.

The companies have financed a lobbying group, the Association for Responsible Alternatives to Workers’ Compensation (ARAWC), that has already helped write legislation in one state, Tennessee. Richard Evans, the group’s executive director, told an insurance journal in November that the corporations ultimately want to change workers’ comp laws in all 50 states. Lowe’s, Macy’s, Kohl’s, Sysco Food Services, and several insurance companies are also part of the year-old effort. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

black swan two

- Black Swan 2: This Is “The Next Critical Chapter In The Austrian Banking System Story” (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015):

“A relatively low-profile entity in Austria – Pfandbriefbank Oesterreich AG (Pfandbriefbank) – is becoming the next critical chapter in the Austrian banking system story.” – Daiwa

When it comes to the sweeping of (trillions of) toxic assets until such time as the ECB starts purchasing not only government bonds but equities, bank loans and really anything else that in a normal world would have some “mark to market” value, Europe had a ready answer: bad banks. A tradition which started with Switzerland and the semi-bailout of UBS during the great financial crisis, “bad banks” have been proposed every time there are a few hundred billion in bad assets that need to be swept away or otherwise removed from the the public eye. Continue reading »

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Mar 28

- The Bottom’s Not In——Why This Market Is Dumber Than A Mule (David Stockman’s Contra Corner, March 26, 2015):

They were trying to put in a bottom—–again! The sell-off earlier this week amounted to the sixth sizeable “dip” since November 20—-so the market’s ingrained reflex was back at work all afternoon, trying to scoop up the “bargains”.

But the roundtrip to the flat-line shown below is not a classic “wall of worry” and its not a “bottom” that’s being put in. This market is dumber than a mule, and the nation’s central bank and its counterparts around the world have made it so.

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Mar 28

Worlds-biggest-gold-coin-Australian-Kangaroo-1-Ton


 

- Peak Gold? Goldman Calculates There Is Only 20 Years Of Gold Supply Left (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015)

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Mar 28

- Invest in Food (Bullion Bulls Canada – Sprott Money News, March 20. 2015):

At first glance, the title to this commentary seems facile, especially to those readers in higher income brackets. The reality, however, is that “investing in food” is a risk-free means of generating an annual return on one’s investment that would likely exceed the return one could earn on almost any other investment – despite the fact that nearly all other asset classes carry significant risks.

Indeed, with many asset classes currently at extreme “bubble” levels in their valuations (notably stocks,bonds, and real estate), the term “risk” is gross understatement. Putting any new money into any such assets (or simply keeping one’s wealth exposed to these sectors) is nothing less than financial suicide. In comparison to financial suicide; the opportunity for a risk-free return on one’s investing today obviously merits further scrutiny.

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Mar 28

Gold-101

- Gold Prices Will Hit Record On Surging Asian Demand, ANZ Says (ZeroHedge, March 19, 2015)

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Mar 28

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Mar 28

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Mar 28

In the city use barefoot running shoes/sandals!


Related info:

- Barefoot Running: The Luna Story With Barefoot Ted – Running The Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon (Ultra Caballo Blanco) In Sandals — The Barefoot Professor (Videos)

- The Tarahumara Tribe Record For A SINGLE RUN Is A Staggering 435 Miles In Just Over 48 Hours – Running Secret Revealed (Video):

“Astonishingly, the entire tribe consisting of men, women, old and young, every one of them is capable of running at least 250+ miles in a single run, without shoes. Such extreme feat of endurance has never been seen among humans anywhere else in the world.”

- Running Around Australia – 366 Marathons In 366 Days On A Raw Vegan Diet, Wearing Barefoot Running Shoes (Video)

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Mar 28

Do I believe that we are ‘born to run move’? YES.

Do I believe that we were/are ‘hunting pack animals’? NO.

As a side note: My diet is raw vegan (+ honey – salt [yes, no inorganic Celtic or Himalaya salt in my diet]).



Oct 27, 2009

Full of incredible characters, amazing athletic achievements, cutting-edge science, and, most of all, pure inspiration, Born to Run is an epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt? In search of an answer, Christopher McDougall sets off to find a tribe of the world’s greatest distance runners and learn their secrets, and in the process shows us that everything we thought we knew about running is wrong. Isolated by the most savage terrain in North America, the reclusive Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s deadly Copper Canyons are custodians of a lost art. For centuries they have practiced techniques that allow them to run hundreds of miles without rest and chase down anything from a deer to an Olympic marathoner while enjoying every mile of it. Their superhuman talent is matched by uncanny health and serenity, leaving the Tarahumara immune to the diseases and strife that plague modern existence. With the help of Caballo Blanco, a mysterious loner who lives among the tribe, the author was able not only to uncover the secrets of the Tarahumara but also to find his own inner ultra-athlete, as he trained for the challenge of a lifetime: a fifty-mile race through the heart of Tarahumara country pitting the tribe against an odd band of Americans, including a star ultramarathoner, a beautiful young surfer, and a barefoot wonder. With a sharp wit and wild exuberance, McDougall takes us from the high-tech science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultrarunners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to the climactic race in the Copper Canyons. Born to Run is that rare book that will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that the secret to happiness is right at your feet, and that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.

Related info:

- Barefoot Running: The Luna Story With Barefoot Ted – Running The Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon (Ultra Caballo Blanco) In Sandals — The Barefoot Professor (Videos)

- The Tarahumara Tribe Record For A SINGLE RUN Is A Staggering 435 Miles In Just Over 48 Hours – Running Secret Revealed (Video):

“Astonishingly, the entire tribe consisting of men, women, old and young, every one of them is capable of running at least 250+ miles in a single run, without shoes. Such extreme feat of endurance has never been seen among humans anywhere else in the world.”

- Running Around Australia – 366 Marathons In 366 Days On A Raw Vegan Diet, Wearing Barefoot Running Shoes (Video)

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Mar 27

- “I’m Not Stupid” Monsanto Lobbyist Refuses To Drink Weedkiller After Proclaiming “It Won’t Hurt You” (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015):

“Do as I say, not as I do,” appears to be the message from a controversial lobbyist who claimed that the chemical in Monsanto’s Roundup weed killer was safe for humans refused to drink his own words when a French television journalist offered him a glass… “I’m not stupid,” he proclaims… you be the judge…

In a preview of an upcoming documentary on French TV, Dr. Patrick Moore tells a Canal+ interviewer that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup herbicide, was not increasing the rate of cancer in Argentina.

Entertaining transcript:

“You can drink a whole quart of it and it won’t hurt you,” Moore insists.

“You want to drink some?” the interviewer asks. “We have some here.”

“I’d be happy to, actually,” Moore replies, adding, “Not really. But I know it wouldn’t hurt me.”

“If you say so, I have some,” the interviewer presses.

“I’m not stupid,” Moore declares.

Continue reading »

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Mar 27

Putin chess

- Syria “Welcomes” Larger Russia Presence (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015):

Following Vladimir Putin’s demands for an “immediate cessation of military activities” in Yemen, AFP reports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s comment during a recent interview that “with complete confidence that we welcome any widening of the Russian presence in the eastern Mediterranean and on Syrian coasts and ports,” including the port of Tartus. Amid the Western-backed opposition National Coalition’s planned boycott of talks, Assad pointedly remarked, “the negotiating parties must be independent and must reflect what the Syrian people want… people would not accept that their future, their fate, or their rules are decided from outside.”

Syria would welcome an increased Russian military presence at its sea ports, President Bashar al-Assad said in an interview with Russian news channels published Friday. As AFP reports,

“I can say with complete confidence that we welcome any widening of the Russian presence in the eastern Mediterranean and on Syrian coasts and ports,” including the port of Tartus, Assad said. Continue reading »

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Mar 27

H/t reader M.G.:

“From the Intercept…..TSA’s list of how to spot a terrorist..

I have known many who show some of these symptoms due to fear of flying…..evidently, anyone can be labeled a terrorist.

This is so absurd, I had to show it to you…..”


TSA-Behavior-Checklist-To-Spot-Terrorists

- Exclusive: TSA’s Secret Behavior Checklist to Spot Terrorists (The Intercept, March 27, 2015):

Fidgeting, whistling, sweaty palms. Add one point each. Arrogance, a cold penetrating stare, and rigid posture, two points.

These are just a few of the suspicious signs that the Transportation Security Administration directs its officers to look out for — and score — in airport travelers, according to a confidential TSA document obtained exclusively by The Intercept.

The checklist is part of TSA’s controversial program to identify potential terrorists based on behaviors that it thinks indicate stress or deception — known as the Screening of Passengers by Observation Techniques, or SPOT. The program employs specially trained officers, known as Behavior Detection Officers, to watch and interact with passengers going through screening. Continue reading »

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Mar 27

erdogan-turkey-police-state

- Turkey Devolves Into A Full Police State: Law Grants Unlimited Powers To Weaponized Police Force (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015):

While a source of much schadenfreude by its neighbors and casual onlookers, Turkey has become a glaring example of what happens to a formerly respectable nation as it devolves entirely into a banana republic with not only authoritarian overtones but a police state to boot. And earlier today, Turkey’s conversion to a full blown police state was complete when, after weeks of heated debates and brawls in parliament, Turkey’s government passed a security package expanding police powers, along with an online surveillance law and a discretionary fund for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to fund covert operations.

In other words, president Erdogan has just voted himself quasi-dictatorial powers with a private police force to defend him. Continue reading »

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Mar 27

obamacare-symbol

- It’s Official: Americans Spent All Their “Gas Savings” On Obamacare (ZeroHedge, March 27, 2015):

Last quarter, when we showed what was “The Reason For The “Surge” In Q3 GDP”, some were shocked to learn that in the quarter in which US GDP posted a 5% surge, it was none other than Obamacare – a mandatory tax according to the Supreme Court which has the benefit of flowing through the US income statement – which contributed the bulk of this upside.

Final Q3 GDP contribution_2

We are happy, and we use the term loosely, that history has just repeated itself, and now that the final number is available, what we wrote a month ago in “Here Is What Americans Spent Their “Gas Savings” On” has just been confirmed, and as the chart below shows, in the final revision of Q4 GDP, while virtually every other category of household spending was largely unchanged or revised lower, it was Healthcare, of which Obamacare was the biggest contributor on the margin, which saw an unprecedented surge in total spending, from $1.858 trillion to $1.871.9 trillion just between the second and final GDP revisions: a bump of $13.9 billion, without which Q3 GDP would have grown well below 2%!

Obamacare Q4 GDp_1

It gets better, because in the fourth quarter total spending on healthcare in chained-dollars was a whopping $35.3 billion. An all time record! Continue reading »

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