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Thu, 06 Oct 2022
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Puppet Masters


Obama compares Israel/Palestinian relations to U.S. and Canada

© AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster
President Barack Obama waves to media as he walks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, right, as he arrives at the Muqata Presidential Compound Thursday, March 21, 2013, in the West Bank town of Ramallah.
At his press conference Thursday with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, President Barack Obama chose an unusual example to drive home his belief that peace between Israelis and Palestinians is possible.

In his effort to convince the local populations, who have been in a decades-old (and some might even say millennia-old) conflict, Obama invoked perhaps the most peaceful neighbors on the planet, that is the U.S. and Canada.

"We can't afford to have our kids in bed sleeping and suddenly a rocket comes through the roof, but my argument is even though both sides may have areas of strong disagreement, may be engaging in activities the other side considers to be a breach of good faith, we have to push through those things to try to get to an agreement," Obama said.

Star of David

Obama heckled in Jerusalem: 'Actually made me feel at home'

© AP
President Barack Obama was briefly interrupted by a heckler during a speech to students in Jerusalem on Thursday.

The heckler was booed loudly by the surrounding audience. As the protester continued to shout, Obama said, "This is part of the lively debate that we talked about, this is good!"

At that, the audience burst into applause and gave him a standing ovation.


Man gives passionate gun control speech: 'The constitution did not guarantee public safety - it guaranteed liberty'

© YouTube
Vernon, Conn. resident Robert Steed
How do Connecticut residents feel about the crackdown on the Second Amendment? Well, there are people from both sides making passionate arguments on the issue, however, one gentleman last week was able to make a particularly persuasive case against more gun control and in favor of the U.S. Constitution.

Meet Robert Steed, a resident of Vernon, Conn. who took three days straight off work to attend several gun control hearings in Connecticut. On March 14, Steed was more "aggravated" than usual with lawmakers and he let them know it in his fiery testimony, telling them that they were "coloring outside the lines of constitutional parameters."

"This is the third day I've taken off of work to come here to, like so many of the rest of us, to plead with you for us to keep our guns because of some wing-nut in Newtown, Connecticut," he said. "If that isn't inherently wrong, I don't know what is. That these bills are even in proposed form is scary enough. That any of you could possibly be undecided is scary enough. What are you looking at?"

He went on: "I can't for the life of me understand how this state can have as many gun laws on the books as it does and have members of its Legislature need to take firearms 101. And as far as what I felt were potshots taken at the NRA, they've done more for gun safety - they'll do more for gun safety this weekend than this committee will do in your careers."

Stock Down

Controversial interview exposes 5 signs stocks will collapse in 2013

"After putting $803,436 in Obama's re-election campaign, a media giant attempted to keep Americans from seeing the video by banning it from their sites," stated Aaron DeHoog, the financial publisher who is unapologetic for the release of controversial footage that has gained international attention.

The video DeHoog is referring to is a stunning interview with famed economist Robert Wiedemer, author of the New York Times best-selling book Aftershock.

Wiedemer, best known for correctly predicting the collapse of the U.S. housing market, equity markets, and consumer spending that almost sank the United States during the "Great Recession", provides disturbing evidence in the video interview for 50 percent unemployment, a 90 percent stock market crash, and 100 percent annual inflation . . . starting as soon as 2013.

When the host of the interview expressed disbelief in Wiedemer's claims, he calmly displayed five indisputable charts to back up his predictions (click here to see those exact charts).

Treasure Chest

Cyprus shows the euro zone shouldn't plunder the savers

© Simon Dawson/Bloomberg
Men sit on a street bench near two unused 24-hour automated teller machines operated by Bank of Cyprus Plc in Nicosia, Cyprus. European policy makers weighed how far to push Cyprus after lawmakers in the Mediterranean nation rejected an unprecedented levy on bank deposits, throwing into limbo a rescue package designed to keep it in the euro.
The parliament of Cyprus was right this week to reject a proposal to confiscate money from modest-sized bank deposits. The idea was a reductio ad absurdum of the euro zone's policy on the sovereign debt of some of its member-countries.

It would be better for the government of Cyprus to default outright on some of its obligations rather than to seize part of the savings of the proverbial widows and orphans, as well as retirees or those approaching retirement - while purporting to levy a tax. This is especially true in a country that has deposit insurance for up to €100,000, in order to protect small savers.

Until a few years ago, Cyprus - which is really the ethnically Greek section of Cyprus, the Turkish section being a de facto protectorate of Turkey - had a fiscal surplus, but its close relationship to Greece resulted in a downturn when Greece fell into a severe recession. The government's debt in itself is still manageable, but Cypriot banks have become shaky because of their loans to Greece.


Mass panic in Cyprus: The banks are collapsing and ATMs are running out of money

cyprus atm
© Imelda Flattery
Cyprus ATM panic
European officials are openly admitting that the two largest banks in Cyprus are "insolvent", and it is now being reported that Cyprus Popular Bank only has "enough liquidity to cover the next few hours". Of course all banks in Cyprus are officially closed until Tuesday at the earliest, but there have been long lines at ATMs all over Cyprus as people scramble to get whatever money they can out of the banks. Unfortunately, some ATMs appear to be "malfunctioning" and others appear to have already run out of cash. You can see some photos of huge lines at one ATM in Cyprus right here. Some businesses are now even refusing to take credit card payments. This is creating an atmosphere of panic on the streets of Cyprus. Meanwhile, the EU is holding a gun to the head of the Cyprus financial system. Either Cyprus meets EU demands by Monday, or liquidity for the banks will be totally cut off and Cyprus will be forced out of the euro. It is being reported that European officials believe that the "economy is going to tank in Cyprus no matter what", and that it would be okay to let the financial system of Cyprus crash and burn if politicians in Cyprus are not willing to do what they have been ordered to do. Apparently European officials are very confident that the situation in Cyprus can be contained and that it will not spread to other European nations.

Comment: Russia and now even Turkey are being tipped to 'assist' Cyprus in a 'bailout' in exchange for it's resources, if help is provided at all. It seems that the Troika (EU/ECB and IMF) intended to destroy the Cypriot economy but retain control over it's sovereignty. Given the geopolitical games being played, it is quite possible they have lost control of the situation. While the elite play poker behind locked doors the Cypriot people are facing intolerable upset to their way of life, through no fault of their own.


Putin: Cyprus bank levy Is 'unjust, unprofessional, and dangerous'

© Mikhail Klimentyev/Associated Press
Vladimir Putin. Russia's stock markets tumbled amid growing concerns over the Cyprus bailout.
The spokesman for Vladimir Putin says the Russian president is strongly critical of a plan to levy a tax on depositors in Cyprus.

Russian companies have an estimated $19 billion in Cypriot bank accounts. Russians have for years seen Cyprus as an investor-friendly jurisdiction with lax banking regulations and low taxes.


Cyprus ATMs low on cash, credit card payments refused; Medvedev compares Europe to USSR

So far the market has been largely oblivious of the shattered trust and changed dynamic in European banking dynamics for one simple reason: Cyprus banks have been closed, and likely will be closed indefinitely, preventing the mass media from broadcasting what happens when an entire population, and foreign depositors, decide to clear out the holdings of their bank accounts, either physically or electronically, and the public anger the will result when they find that courtesy of fractional reserve banking, only a tiny amount of said deposits is actually present.

In the meantime, retail depositors have had their withdrawals limited through a form of capital controls, allowing them to pull only as much as the daily limit is on given ATMs. So far the banks have had enough cash to keep ATMs stocked up to the daily required minimum, but that may soon be ending. BBC's Mark Lowen, in Nicosia, reports that "Cyprus' banks are still giving out cash through machines - although with limits, and some are running low." Ironically, as physical cash becomes ever scarcer, merchants are now clamping down on electronic payments unsure if they will ever be able to convert electronic euros into actual ones: "Some businesses are now refusing credit card payments, our correspondent reports."

Logically, this progression of limited transactions will accelerate exponentially until by some miracle, either normalcy returns and faith in the local banking system is restored, or every form of commerce, trade and exchange grinds to a halt, leading to a localized, at first, manifestation of the "just-in-time" supply-chain cross contagion that was explained in painful detail in "Trade-Off: a study in global systemic collapse."

Since we don't believe in miracles, our money is increasingly on the latter. This sentiment is further reinforced by former Russian president, current Prime Minister, and Putin mouthpiece, Dmitry Medvedev, who said that what Europe has done is nothing shy of what the USSR used to do in its attempt to destroy faith in private property, and thus, capitalism.

Stock Down

Sort it by Monday! ECB sets deadline for Cyprus plan to raise €5.8bn

Cyprus protest
© CBC News
Cyprus has just 72 hours left to come up with a plan to raise €5.8bn before the European Central Bank pulls emergency funding from its ailing banks, plunging the country into economic turmoil and towards an exit from the single currency.

Politicians are frantically trying to scrape together a package to raise the money and get it approved by parliament. But they are playing a delicate balancing act, anxious to please the "troika" of the EU, ECB and International Monetary Fund (IMF), while not alienating their biggest investors in Russia.

In Cyprus, queues at ATMs grow longer each day amid fears that some of the banks could soon collapse and take people's deposits with them. Last night the Cyprus Popular Bank imposed a €260 daily withdrawal limit for all its customers while banks are likely to remain closed until Tuesday.

Scuffles broke out outside the Cypriot Parliament after protesters tried to storm the building but were prevented by riot police. Hundreds of Cypriots gathered after employees from Laiki Bank heard that it was about to be shut down as a condition of securing further funding.

Snakes in Suits

Texas state senator: Close abortion clinics because sometimes men have anal bleeding

© Facebook
Donna Campbell
A Texas state senator said Tuesday that she supports a bill which would force nearly all of the state's abortion clinics to close, namely because if a man ever suffers from anal bleeding after a colonoscopy, trained surgeons are needed to help him.

That insight came from state Sen. Donna Campbell (R), who spoke in favor of Senate Bill 537, which would require all abortion clinics in the state to comply with regulations governing surgical centers.

"After a colonoscopy on a man, he comes in bleeding in the emergency room from the rectum and we've got a surgeon on call," Campbell said in video of the hearing, embedded below. "But we don't have somebody on call for a lady who is hemorrhaging in the uterus from a procedure that was done at a facility that was held at less standards. So I applaud this bill. I jumped on this bill as a physician and as a woman."

While the comparison of a rectum and a uterus might strike some as offensive on its face, the analogy also seems to indicate that Campbell may not understand the possible complications from surgical and medical abortions, nor their frequency.