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Politics
Putin & Petro-Dollar Revolt
November 26, 2004

The following article is available at the authors site, www.goldenjackass.com, and goldeagle. I put it up here because I feel it is very worth debating. We've touched on these issues for the past few years. We've written and posted articles about the demise of the Petro-Dollar, and the prospect of a Euro-Dollar, we've also stated over time that Iraq was moving to payment in Euro's before the second war. So this information is not surprising, but it is very well put together and definitely germane to current blogs on D2.

So here it is:

Putin & Petro-Dollar Revolt
by Jim Willie CB


Subtle changes are in the wind on the energy front. As much as some people want to regard Russia as a strong American ally, their behavior on several fronts testifies to the contrary. Some truly staggering developments are underway, not adequately reported. Behind the scenes, covered little by the intrepid US press & media, a meeting was convened two weeks ago in the Urals of Russia. European leaders, and OPEC representatives, and Putin quietly are plotting to establish stronger ties between Europe and Russia in their basis for financial transactions. Putin is adroitly offering to install euro pricing of crude oil, which would surely favor Germany and other large EU nations. He strives to obtain geopolitical concessions from EU leaders, namely a more powerful voice for Russia in world politics.

OPEC appears to be willing and eager to join in new alliances to undermine the US domination from owning the world reserve currency. Enormous consequences follow, which lie completely in US blind spots. A strange contrasting parallel might exist between the United States and Russia, regarding relationships with large energy companies. The USA has evolved into a cooperative collusion with big companies like Halliburton. Russia has broken down into a confrontational situation steeped in confiscation with big companies like Yukos. The USA seems to work constructively with large firms, with governmental support. This is seen in sponsored foreign grain sales, in development of petro-chemical plants, in defense contracts for the military complex, in permissiveness toward software monopolies, in protection of the steel industry, and elsewhere. Russia seems to work in adversarial roles to steal back and forth with their big firms.

RUSSIAN ASSAULT ON FREE ENTERPRISE
Russian legal treachery embodies a big insult to free enterprise and rights to property. One might say Yukos Oil began as a company with stolen property, or cozy deals to gather in several purchases from state-owned regions, or tax scoffs at Russian authorities enabled growth. Fine, whatever. My attention is trained on current methods, which can be aptly labeled as legal warfare, and trends which betray private property. The Yukos tax & fine bill submitted was revealed to be $18.5 billion, which exceeds the company's annual revenue, and goes far beyond the level where embarrassment is profoundly clear. The Russian government has established a modus operandi, i.e. method of operation. A company is targeted for seizure. It is charged with tax evasion. Their assets are then frozen, pending investigations and legal outcomes. Cash flow is interrupted, only to put debt service repayments in jeopardy. The courts declare debt default, a fresh new problem for the targeted company, whose stock declines in value, and possibly sharply. Under financial duress, a deal is cut, as taxes are paid as a fraction of the original demand in return for a sale of large tracts of the company's properties to the Russian govt. Charges are reduced or negotiated along with the distress sale of their property. Such a pattern has shown itself clearly with the Yukos case.

Moreover on the front tied to cooperative agreements, Russia's treachery is wholly evident in its dealings with western firms. Pan Am Silver was severely victimized, via dissolution of a partner firm and reconstitution of a new corporate entity Polimetall with those mining rights, leaving the US firm out in the cold Siberian winter. PanAm Silver appears not to be in line to share profits where silver production is forthcoming. The original company was dissolved, and along with it, all contracts with PanAm. Czarist gamesmanship with western energy companies is now in focus. British Petroleum is at risk with older contracts, while others like Conoco Philips are at risk with newer contracts. British Petroleum could be in the midst of a bold double-cross, for the craziest of sounding reasons. They exceeded licensed production amounts!

To the casual non-discerning observer, Putin appears to offer much needed support to President Bush, as seen in bilateral meetings in Texas that included a horseback ride photo opp. A closer examination reveals more ominous overtones in recent geopolitical events and high-level discussions. The summertime tragedy at the children schoolhouse in Chechnya triggered an international outcry of criticism. The US State Dept issued public statements to the effect that the Russian govt might have acted with too much force, a vivid reminder of their action taken in the Moscow theatre taken hostage a year ago. Each incident, the theater and the school, resulted in over 200 fatal victims. Putin was rankled by the criticism. Last month, after a visit by a leading US legal team to Russia, and upon urgent pleas made to the US State Dept once again, our prestigious ministry issued more criticism of Putin for their harsh legal approach to Yukos and denial of property rights, not to mention due process travesties. Several US firms have longstanding contracts with Yukos, which are now in confusion or jeopardy. Once more Putin has been angered.

RUSSIA-EUROPEAN AXIS EVOLVES
Putin is in the midst of taking steps very harmful to the petro-dollar foundation of international commerce. In late October, the Moscow Times reported that President Vladimir Putin might order Russia to switch its trade in oil from denomination in USDollars to the currency flowing in the European Union, the euro. Such a move could have far-reaching repercussions for the global monetary system and its balance of power. Few US-based analysts even discuss the stability of the petro-dollar, which is assumed a fixture never to be tampered with. Not here. Few again discuss the impact of changes in basis to link the USDollar to crude oil. Implications would add fresh momentum and force to the three-year bear market in the USDollar. What harms the USA would enhance the European Union and its economy.

Putin's words and actions are telling, a key revelation of his awareness of how important the stakes are, and how Russia holds a strong poker hand with respect to the United States. At a joint news conference with German Chancellor Schroeder in Yekaterinburg, Putin strongly suggested that Russia could switch its trade in oil from dollars to euros. He said "We do not rule out that it is possible. That would be interesting for our European partners. But this does not depend solely on us. We do not want to hurt prices on the market." The importance of the event was not lost on strategic energy agencies, but hardly made a sound bite within the US financial circles.

The European Union has long objected to the financial hegemony of the United States in its dominance of global commerce and money supply. Nowhere is the battle more bitter than in reaction to the chronic abuse of the USGovt in irresponsible spending disconnected from accountability. Europe has complained for many years about the realized exploitation by the USA in expanding federal spending, domestic tax rate cuts, advocated consumer spending, mortgage finance support, and wartime expeditions. Behind these trends and excesses is the petro-dollar system, whose US$ status as world reserve currency basically means "anything goes." We have taken advantage of the situation, much like an undisciplined teenager who with impunity wrecks cars, collects traffic violation fines, goes on drunken benders, destroys property, assaults people, and expects the world's savings account to pay for all the bills and cleanup costs. The analogy might seem off the mark, but not really. Most foreign trade surpluses find their way quickly into the US Treasury market, the Fanny Mae & Freddy Mac mortgage market, and US corporate bonds which finance their retail credit operations. Resentment has grown perhaps to a critical level, where reaction is to be soon expected.

The Putin statements in the Urals Summit highlight the drawn out campaign by European Union leaders to encourage increased commerce and banking operations in the euro currency. This is a natural response to the USDollar decline. European exports have been forced to endure price hikes from currency exchange impact alone, only to stress their economies. European bank reserves have suffered a decline in value from that same currency exchange impact, only to stress their banking systems. EU leaders obviously seek two changes: more commerce priced in euros, more reserves held in eurobonds. Many regard Russia to be in the enviable position to extract concessions, to demand more prominent geopolitical stature, in return for agreements to broaden ties to Europe. In doing so, they would break links or weaken links to the USA.

It is my analysis that the USA-Russian relationship will degrade into open hostility, but in stages of deterioration. Yesterday a story was reported on a new advanced weapon system to be deployed by Russia. Its targets are uncertain, while the risks are clear. As the world's #1 oil producer, ahead of Saudi Arabia, Russia holds much new clout. An agreement by them to embrace European currency aspirations could provoke a chain reaction among other oil producers, thus stabilizing the crude oil price IN THEIR WORLD. My analytic forecast in May 2003 for crude oil to become priced in euro denomination is slowly taking root, with broad implications. As the eurobonds grow in held reserves, the euro will gradually unseat the USDollar and claim exalted status as the world reserve currency, first in de-facto action then in actual deed. US financial markets seem asleep on the issue and its frightening risk to the US Economy.

SOME THOUGHTS INSIDE RUSSIA
In the grand chess game of global clout, Russia wants to become a stronger player on the European continent and in the Middle East. These guys know chess and craft. USA knows force and muscle. At a Helsinki meeting in 1999, Putin showed his original intention to switch oil pricing to euros as part of a grand package which included security issues. According to Alexander Rahr, an expert on Russia at the German Council on Foreign Relations, "Putin is very much interested in changing the structure of OPEC and he cannot do that without the United States… And, he wants to get contracts for the Russian oil industry in Iraq -- for this, too, he needs the United States." We Americans tend to forget the growing commercial ties between Russia and the 300 million people who occupy the European Union plus Eastern Europe. That entire region is slowly being embraced by the EU. Yevgeny Gavrilenkov, chief economic advisor to Putin, said debate is growing on a move to the euro as Russia mulls siding with the EU. "Such an idea is really possible. Why not? More than half of Russia's oil trade is with Europe. But there will be great opposition to this from the United States." The impact to Russia would be much less than to Europe, which now feels the sting of a rising euro. Putin is playing a huge bargaining chip, or else he is bluffing in order to gain inroads into Iraqi oil production contracts. A sure benefit to Europe from a wider acceptance of the new petro-euro would be lower EU interest rates, like what the USA enjoys now (temporarily).

How about a word from Russian big oil? The opinion of Lukoil vice president Leonid Fedun is worthy of note. Three or four giant energy companies dominate in Russia, including Gazprom and Lukoil, rivals of Yukos. Fedun acknowledges that any switch to euro payments would mean only a minor difference in actual transactions and cost changes. For observers it is important to focus not on the small value differences in the commerce, but on the large tectonic shift in the system which links that commerce to the monetary system itself. The political price tag and shift of financial power matter much more. Fedun is quoted by Interfax as saying "We are ready to move to the euro if the country will be included in a visa-free regime with Europe. It's a bargaining chip." By "visa" he means passports, not credit cards. Talk is rampant that Putin is playing his chess pieces in the tradition of smart Russian masters, vying for EU concessions and World Trade Org inclusion.

ASIA GETS A WORD IN
Bank of Japan Governor Fukui said if a strong rival to the USDollar as a key global currency were to emerge, a stabilizing effect on the global financial system would result. Fukui referred to the dangers associated with allowing any single currency to dominate global commerce, mentioned its disruptive influence, and indirectly criticized the US financial management. Fukui told a recent conference "In such a situation, the economy of the key currency is easily tempted to focus its economic policy on domestic considerations… In today's globalized economy, this could lead to undesirable ripple effects on the rest of the world, through the fluctuations of the external value of the key currency." The message is clear. We have been warned, but our bond market seems in total indifference.

Asians, with their collective $1900 billion in foreign exchange reserves, stand to lose significant capital in their banking systems, since the majority of these reserves are in US$-based securities. Asians, most notably Japan and China, find themselves in an awkward position. If they extend deeper support to the US$, their risk rises. If they diversify or withdraw with more conviction, their capital losses could be staggering. For certain, rhetoric both in Asia and Europe is bubbling over. A severe backlash is coming for the USDollar for its profligate abuse and irresponsible management. We have used the world currency US$ as an agent for bubble generation and Ponzi Economics. This topic receives sparse coverage in the US press & media, with little or no appreciation of importance.

OPEC HAS SOMETHING TO SAY
Youssef Ibrahim is the managing director of the Strategic Energy Investment Group in Dubai and a member of the US Council on Foreign Relations. His words included the word "catastrophe" in recent quotes. His voice carries great influence, perhaps as much in the European-Arab petro world as Alan Greenspan in our world. Ibrahim speaks from the world of the petro system and its root in tangible world of trade, while Greenspan speaks from the world of the monetary system and its roots in inflationary financial engineering.

Between 60% and 70% of world currency reserves, from trade surplus and oil export, are kept in the form of USDollars and US$-denominated securities such as USTBonds. Since surpluses are stored in the US$ system, the US Economy enjoys a risk-free benefit, and sidesteps all market mechanisms in response to imbalances. The USA should have interest rates prevail to 3% to 5% above the rest of the world, from a current account deficit basis alone. Instead, Asia and the Persian Gulf emirates keep our rates artificially low. The USA should have a currency exchange rate 20% to 35% lower than current rates, from a current account deficit basis alone.

A world euro foundation would enable development of its poorer eastern provinces such as Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, Romania, perhaps even the Ukraine and western Russia. In the last several years, the US$ standard has encouraged mindless US consumer spending, oversized home construction, housing speculation, stock & bond speculation, and more. Those days will see a sunset. They represent the legacy of US indulgence, greed, and corruption of the system. Ibrahim warns that "There are already a number of countries within OPEC that would prefer to trade in euros." He speaks of a growing fallout from the Iraqi War, that traditional ally Saudi Arabia might switch also, though its government has not come down firmly on one side. First come the hint from rumblings, then comes the denial. After backroom preparation for change, finally we see the reality of change in action.

What follows must be heard closely, as it carries extreme significance regardless of your political position. Iraq has changed the geopolitical stage and its alignment. "There is a revision going on of its [Saudi] strategic relationship with the United States. Already, they are buying more [French-made] Airbuses," Ibrahim said. "The Saudi Crown Prince [Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud] visit to Russia was of great significance and the regime is talking about closer cooperation with Lukoil and other Russian companies." One must consider a secondary motive in why the US attacked Iraq, related to preservation of the petro-dollar. Such a view is totally out of the field of vision by American observers and analysts. He went on with"There is a great political dimension to this. Slowly more power and muscle is moving from the United States to the EU, and that is mainly because of what happened in Iraq."

CONCLUSION
The implications are vast, worthy of discussion. In the last 15 years, the USA has learned through positive reinforcement a bad lesson in economics. The current administration, it appears, operates under the notion that twin deficits are stimulative and positive. SO IS CARDIAC ELECTRICAL SHOCK WITH PADDLE BOARDS STIMULATIVE TO A HEART ATTACK VICTIM FLAT ON HIS BACK. It is not positive. A catastrophe is in the making, as the erosion of the petro-dollar foundation continues inexorably. Such a development will undermined the USDollar in a lost world reserve status. Many inexperienced watchers proclaim SO WHAT ??? False bravado can be the accusation to defiance. To act in isolation with attitude strikes at the heart of the world currency responsibility. To act in isolation with attitude is foolhardy when we are so dependent upon world savings. Well, the answer is that soon, the US Economy will witness the consequences of fiscal and financial irresponsibility in the form of higher interest rates, as well as higher production costs and energy costs !!! No more carte blanche, blank check, free ride, endless freedom, unleashed behavior.

To some degree, a petro-dollar system shields the US Economy from higher prices for crude oil, diesel, heating oil, and gasoline. Foreign nations like Japan, and trading blocks like the European Union must collect large tranches of USDollars in order to conduct transactions for energy supplies. In doing so, they accumulate US$-based reserves. This phenomenon has softened the decline in the USDollar. Removal of the petro-dollar foundation will both push the US$ lower and lift the crude oil priced in US$ higher.

Observers and analysts alike are focused upon terrorist risk. They should pay greater notice to financial retaliation and grand shifts in its foundational structure. The United States owns tremendous superiority on the military battlefield. Our greatest vulnerability is financial, from the foreign dependence on credit supply, from supply chain import of energy and other commodities, and most of all from the continued acceptance of the petro-dollar system which serves as the foundation of the world monetary system. The petro-dollar is showing cracks, decay, and moss. Rivots are loose on the USDollar manhole cover, with chips and rust showing. One can clearly see Russian and Islamic feet attempted to tilt the manhole cover off its rim. Prepare for change.

These topics are fully discussed and analyzed in my private newsletter, and especially in special reports. Two (perhaps three) energy stocks in the portfolio are poised to rise 10-fold. The November issue cites three silver miner stocks which are also set to rise dramatically. In the coming year, look for silver to gain in price far more than gold as investment demand for the white precious metal kicks in. Meanwhile, don't look now but the Canadian Dollar is the strongest currency on earth. The ongoing and future development of its western provinces, the ongoing and future acquisition of their properties by China, these will only serve to gather even more momentum for both the looney currency and commodities.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jim Willie CB is a statistical analyst in marketing research and retail forecasting. He holds a PhD in Statistics. His career has stretched over 23 years. He aspires to thrive in the financial editor world, unencumbered by the limitations of economic credentials. Visit his free website to find articles from topflight authors at www.GoldenJackass.com.

Posted by richardlancaster at 08:52 PM | Comments (36)

Politics
Skull & Bones Win Election!
November 03, 2004

Well Even I Predicted The Outcome Of This Election Correctly!!

I've been "Following the Money" now for quite a few years, tracking the heritage of the elites and their affiliations, looking in to the workings of think-tanks, family foundations, institutions, secret societies, freemasonry, interlocking corporate directorships, public to private career moves, and little talked about organizations like the CFR, Tri-lats, Bilderbergs & Skulls. It's all fascinating stuff, shrouded in a thick mist of conspiracy theory, LaRouchian machinations, UFO's and devil-worship!! It's almost laughable but there are too many serious overtones to it all to just write it off as irrelevent. Indeed it may be THE most relevent topic, but it's too hard to get underneath to know!

The job of US President should be transparent. An incoming President should have to swear allegiance to the people and the Constitution, and remove himself from membership in, or affiliation with, ANY secret organization. This is basic, obvious and fundamental for a FREE society. Hidden special interests are the death of freedom over time.

Here's some further information on what I'm talking about here:

Election a 'win-win situation' for secretive Bonesmen
By Kris Millegan

Both major presidential candidates are members of a small secret society at Yale University - the Order of Skull & Bones. On different Sunday mornings, "Meet the Press" anchor Tim Russert asked George Walker Bush and John Forbes Kerry if they could talk about their memberships in this 172-year-old clandestine club.

Tossed off with nervous laughter, their answers were, "It's so secret that I can't talk about it," and, "Not much, because it's a secret."

Should citizens be concerned about this unwillingness to discuss an elite organization? Is it relevant? Don't we all have the freedom to fraternize with whom we please? Aren't Lions, Kiwanis, Elks and similar organizations used by many in pursuit of business and political connections? So what?

William Huntington Russell founded the Order of Skull & Bones in 1832 after he returned from studies in Germany. The Russell family's business - Russell & Co. - was the premier American opium shipper and the third largest in the world. In the 1830s, opium became the world's largest commercial commodity, and the maneuverability and speed of the American clipper ships laid foundations of great wealth with the smuggling of opium into China. Many of the fortunate sons of Russell & Co. families were sent to Yale and were "tapped" into the Order of Skull & Bones.

Fifteen new members are chosen each year from the junior class at Yale. After initiation rites that include simulated murder, the kissing of a skull and chants about the devil and death, they are known as Knights during their senior year. Reportedly, members hold weekly sessions in which they talk about their sex lives, which some say helps forge a strong fraternal bond. The initiates have privileges beyond those enjoyed by fellow students - including a near million-dollar clubhouse, a private island and access to a distinguished and powerful cadre of fellow Bonesmen.

Three Bonesmen have occupied the Oval Office: William Howard Taft (who also served as chief justice of the Supreme Court), George Herbert Walker Bush, and his son. Members have included more than 20 U.S. senators, three U.S. Supreme Court justices and myriad lesser officials.

The order is legendary in its promotion of its members above all others. As a Yale alumnus noted in 1905 about the senior secret society system at Yale, "the best man doesn't always win."

George W. Bush has appointed 11 fellow Bonesmen to government jobs: Evan Griffith Galbraith, adviser to the U.S. mission to NATO; William Henry Donaldson, chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission; George Herbert Walker III, U.S. ambassador to Hungary; Jack Edwin McGregor, member of the advisory board of the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp.; Victor Henderson Ashe, member of the board of directors of the Federal National Mortgage Association; Roy Leslie Austin, U.S. ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago; Robert Davis McCallum Jr., associate attorney general; Rex Cowdry, associate director of the White House's National Economic Council; Edward McNally Sr., associate counsel to the president and general counsel to the Office of Homeland Security; David Batshaw Wiseman, an attorney in the Justice Department's Civil Division; and James Emanuel Boasberg, an associate judge on the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

Taft and George H. W. Bush were both one-term presidents. George W's secret name in the order is reported to be "Temporary." Will he be the first member of the Order of Skull & Bones to serve two terms, in spite of his secret name, or will he hand the reins of government to his rival Bonesman, John Kerry?

This is the first time that both major candidates are members of Skull & Bones. There has been little discussion of the order in Democratic and Republican circles. The Washington Post assigned Bonesman Dana Milbank to cover the election, and he hasn't brought the question up. Even Ralph Nader has been quiet. Is this because Nader's sometimes lawyer and long-standing associate, Donald Etra, is Skull & Bones 1968, and a good friend of George W. Bush?

Author Antony Sutton in the 1980s called attention to the order's predilection for trying to politically influence both the left and the right. Is our current presidential election a contest between the two best candidates for the job, or a cynical dialectic ploy for control of our republic and our collective future?

As a Bonesman is reported to have said about Bush vs. Kerry, "It's a win-win situation."

Maybe it is for the order.

But what about the rest of us?

Kris Millegan (ramillegan@aol.com) lives in Noti and works as a writer and publisher. His book, "Fleshing Out Skull & Bones," is available from www.trineday.com.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++

I'd like to hear an argument for why a US President should be allowed to put his secret society membership BEFORE his commitment to the people of America who he supposedly represents?

Cheers Rich

Posted by rlancaster at 05:18 PM | Comments (297)

Politics
It Ain't Over! Count the Votes!

From our friends at the Daily Kos:

Bush is currently leading in Ohio by 136,221

If there are 250,000 provisional ballots outstanding. The highest number I've seen.

And 90% of those ballots are good, as they were in 2000. That leaves 225,000 votes.

If 85% of those ballots prove to be for Kerry, about the number that Gore got in 2000. That leaves us with 191,250, giving us a lead of 55,029.

If there are only 200,000 provisionals, following the same calculation would leave us with a lead of 16,779.

If the provisional ballots are only 175,000 that leaves us with a deficit of -2,346 that will leaves us in a position to get an automatic statewide recount.

Or, to put it another way, an automatic recount is triggered by a margin of 0.25% or between 13,000 and 16,000 votes.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/11/3/95349/1374

Posted by manystrom at 04:02 PM | Comments (22)

Politics
Eminem Mosh Lyrics
October 30, 2004

These are the latest lyrics from rapper Eminem, and a link to download the powerful video (which is huge)

MOSH VIDEO LINK

http://www.guerrillanews.com/content/eminem_mosh.html

LYRICS

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America
And to the Republic for which it stands
One nation under God
Indivisible...
It feels so good to be back..

I scrutinize every word, memorize every line
I spit it once, refuel and re-energize and rewind
I give sight to the blind, my insight through the mind
I exercise my right to express when I feel it's time
It's just all in your mind, what you interpret it as
I say to fight, you take it as I'mma whip someone's ass
If you don't understand, don't even bother to ask
A father who has grown up with a fatherless past
Who has blown up now to rap phenomenon that has
Or at least shows no difficulty multi-task
And in juggling both perhaps mastered his craft
Slash entrepreneur who has held onto few more rap acts
Who's had a few obstacles thrown his way through the last half
Of his career typical manure moving past that
Mr. kisses ass crack, he's a class act
Rubber band man, yea he just snaps back

[Chorus:]
Come along follow me as I lead through the darkness
As I provide just enough spark that we need to proceed
Carry on, give me hope, give me strength
Come with me and I won't steer you wrong
Put your faith and your trust as I guide us through the fog
To the light at the end of the tunnel
We gonna fight, we gonna charge, we gonna stomp, we gonna march
Through the swamp, we gonna mosh through the marsh
Take us right through the doors (c'mon)

All the people up top on the side and the middle
Come together lets all bomb and swamp just a little
Just let it gradually build from the front to the back
All you can see is a sea of people some white and some black
Don't matter what color, all that matters we gathered together
To celebrate for the same cause don't matter the weather
If it rains let it rain, yea the wetter the better
They ain't gonna stop us they can't, we stronger now more than ever
They tell us no we say yea, they tell us stop we say go
Rebel with a rebel yell, raise hell we gonna let em know
Stomp, push, shove, mush, Fuck Bush, until they bring our troops home (c'mon)

[Chorus]

Imagine it pouring, it's raining down on us
Mosh pits outside the oval office
Someone's tryina tell us something,
Maybe this is god just sayin' we're responsible
For this monster, this coward,
That we have empowered
This is Bin Laden, look at his head noddin'
How could we allow something like this without pumping our fists
Now this is our final hour
Let me be the voice in your strength and your choice
Let me simplify the rhyme just to amplify the noise
Try to amplify the times it, and multiply by six...
Teen million people, Are equal at this high pitch
Maybe we can reach alqueda through my speech
Let the president answer a higher anarchy
Strap him with an Ak-47, let him go, fight his own war
Let him impress daddy that way
No more blood for oil, we got our own battles to fight on our own soil
No more psychological warfare, to trick us to thinking that we ain't loyal
If we don't serve our own country, we're patronizing a hero
Look in his eyes its all lies
The stars and stripes, they've been swiped, washed out and wiped
And replaced with his own face, Mosh now or die
If I get sniped tonight you know why,
Cause I told you to fight.

[Chorus]

And as we proceed,
To Mosh through this desert storm,
In these closing statements, if they should argue
Let us beg to differ
As we set aside our differences
And assemble our own army
To disarm this Weapon of Mass Destruction
That we call our President, for the present
And Mosh for the future of our next generation
To speak and be heard
Mr. President, Mr. Senator
Do you guy's hear us...hear us...[laughing] (Hailie)


Cheers Rich

Posted by rlancaster at 12:21 AM

Politics
American Idiot
October 19, 2004

Lyrics to the Title Track of the Number One Album in America Today

Don't wanna be an American idiot.
Don't want a nation thats under the new media.
Can you hear the sound of hysteria?
The subliminal mindfuck America.

Welcome to a new kind of tension.
All across the alien nation.
Everything isn't meant to be okay.
Television dreams of tomorrow.
We're not the ones who're meant to follow.
Convincing them to walk you.

Well maybe I'm the faggot America.
I'm not a part of a redneck agenda.
Now everybody do the propaganda.
And sing along in the age of paranoia.

Welcome to a new kind of tension.
All across the alien nation.
Everything isn't meant to be okay.
Television dreams of tomorrow.
We're not the ones who're meant to follow.
Convincing them to walk you.

Don't wanna be an American idiot.
Don't want a nation controlled by the media.
Information nation of hysteria.
It's going out to idiot America.

Welcome to a new kind of tension.
All across the alien nation.
Everything isn't meant to be okay.
Television dreams of tomorrow.
We're not the ones who're meant to follow.
Convincing them to walk you.

Posted by rlancaster at 06:26 PM | Comments (2)

War
Team America '04 - Leaders in War Profiteering
October 06, 2004

Team America Movie Poster.jpg

The United States has been the foremost exporter of weapons of all kinds of destruction since the end of WWII, Britain is close behind in second place. War is a massive economic driver, has been since the First Great Depression - think about it........we've been at war since the 1940's. War is now perpetual.

Profit is critical in a fractional reserve banking system that depends on a central bank. So war and driving profit and growth are very synergistic. When you add perpetual growth, war and taxes together you get an amazing soup of global dysfunction that now spans decades, if not century's.

Wouldn't you like to see just how many tax dollars have been spent on the Cold War, the Vietnam War and now the War on Terrorism since 1940. It'd staggering.

And now the current "Team America" seem hellbent on breaking all previous world records for creating mayhem, violence, terror and therefore war profits. Lets take a look at some of the basics:

Carlysle Group connections to current and former world leaders are now well known. The Bin Laden family were investors in Carlisle, which is run by such notables as Bush Snr, James Baker, former Prime Minister John Major, Frank Carlucci, among others. These guys have stakes in the Unocal pipeline in Afghanistan, the Anthrax vaccine (which we don't hear much about right now), some of the latest, most expensive weapons systems - like the Crusader - and a number of other massively profitable businesses that are flourishing with the massive injection of freshly printed cash this government is flooding in to the domestic defence economy - let the good times roll!

Dick "Halliburton" Cheney has now helped his former employer to more than $4.2 BILLION of tax payers money. Of course now Kellog, Brown & Root have been busted they are being left out in the cold, they will probably even make a temporary loss before being re-made in another image, re-branded and re-launched. Look at the history of war profiteering with US companies since WW II (even before that back as far as the Civil War) it is disgusting.

Buy a copy of "Trading With the Enemy" which tells the story of the Bush family connections to the Nazi's and how they profited in prior generations. This is not a new phenomena - they are dynasty's built around war profiteering.

But it's not just about directly profiting, someone has to do some of the dirty political work.

Remember Paul Bremer, former Sultan of Baghdad and longtime Kissinger protege? He has now made public that he needed more troops to win the peace in Iraq - now there's a concept. He took over Iraq "after" the war and needed more troops to police the Iraqi people than were needed to win the war in the first place. Someone screwed up somewhere!

Rumsfeld, aka Skeletor from the old Masters of the Universe cartoon show, has now admitted that there is no provable link between the Saudi Arabian terrorist group called Al Qaida and the former US-backed dictator (turned rogue) Saddam Hussein. Well most of us knew that before the war - why didn't they just ask some of us?

First British President Tony Blair has now formally apologized for his lies about weapons of mass destruction (blaming the intel community). Now the world is forgiving him for at least being man enough to finally tell the truth, in the old days he would've been voted out of office - but the elite in Britain have decided not to offer up any credible opposition to Blair so the people continue along the road towards a Fascistic Monarchy, somekind of new political entity!

The whole notion of WMD in Iraq is intriguing - IF they found WMD where would they have been manufactured??? Who would've been the suppliers? Well I think we know the embarassing answer to these questions - labels on the sides of those cannisters would've said "Made in the USA by Team America."

Cheers Rich

Posted by rlancaster at 12:56 AM | Comments (47)

Politics
No Choice But Skull and Bones
September 21, 2004

Do your homework, and then decide.

Posted by manystrom at 06:09 PM | Comments (3)

Politics
Speeches Ignore Impending U.S. Debt Disaster
September 14, 2004

No mention of fiscal gap estimated as high as $72 trillion

by Carolyn Lochhead, SF Chronicle Washington Bureau

Washington -- The first of the 77 million-strong Baby Boom generation will begin to retire in just four years. The economic consequences of this fact -- as scary as they are foreseeable -- are all but ignored by President Bush and Democratic challenger John Kerry, who discuss just about everything but the biggest fiscal challenge of modern times.

Yet whoever wins the 2004 race will become the first U.S. president to confront what sober-minded experts across the political spectrum describe as an impending "fiscal catastrophe" lying right around the corner.

Astronomical federal debt, coming due as the Baby Boom generation collects Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, is enormous enough to swamp the promises both candidates are making to voters, whether for tax cuts, health care, 40,000 more troops or anything else.

"Chilling" is the word U.S. Comptroller General David Walker uses to describe the budget outlook.

"The long-term budget projections are just horrifying," added Leonard Burman, co-director of tax policy for the Urban Institute. "I've got four children and it really disturbs me. I just think it's irresponsible what we're doing to them."

What these numbers portend are crippling tax increases on workers, slashed benefits for retirees, gutted budgets for homeland security, highways, research and everything else, and an economic decline or a financial collapse that devastates the middle class, as happened recently in debt-strapped Argentina. Eventually, analysts insist, someone -- today's children or tomorrow's elderly or both -- will pay this debt.

Traditional budget measures used by politicians and the press give what Walker and many others call a highly misleading view of the U.S. debt. These focus on publicly held debt already incurred, now at $4.5 trillion, or 10-year budget forecasts like the one released last week by the Congressional Budget Office showing a record $422 billion deficit this year and a $2.3 trillion 10- year deficit.

'Fiscal gap' in the trillions

But these figures, worrisome enough, are deceptive because they ignore future liabilities such as Social Security and Medicare payments to the Baby Boomers. An array of government and private analysts put the actual U.S. "fiscal gap," which means all future receipts minus all future obligations, at $40 trillion (Government Accountability Office) to $72 trillion (Social Security Board of Trustees).

These are not sums, but present-value figures, heavily discounted to show in today's dollars what it would cost to pay off the debt immediately. The International Monetary Fund estimates the gap at $47 trillion, the Brookings Institution at $60 trillion.

"To give you idea how big the problem is," said Laurence Kotlikoff, economics chairman at Boston University, who has written extensively on the subject, to close a $51 trillion fiscal gap, "you'd have to have an immediate and permanent 78 percent hike in the federal income tax."

These obligations are not imaginary. And unlike the 1980s and 1990s, economic growth cannot bail out the government because the Baby Boom retirement is at hand. Those born in 1946 will reach age 62 in 2008, allowing them to take early retirement and receive Social Security benefits.

"It's a number that's so large that people find it implausible, and so they don't think about it," said Alan Auerbach, a UC Berkeley economist who studies the issue and consults for the Kerry campaign. "But it's based simply on the projections we have for Social Security and Medicare. People aren't making these numbers up."

A pathbreaking study by Jagadeesh Gokhale of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and Kent Smetters, a former deputy assistant secretary at the Treasury -- commissioned by former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill -- estimated a $44 trillion fiscal gap. It laid out a few painful options on how to meet the liabilities:

-- More than double the payroll tax, immediately and forever, from 15.3 percent of wages to nearly 32 percent;

-- Raise income taxes by two-thirds, immediately and forever;

-- Cut Social Security and Medicare benefits by 45 percent, immediately and forever;

-- Or eliminate forever all discretionary spending, which includes the military, homeland security, highways, courts, national parks and most of what the federal government does outside of the transfer of payments to the elderly.

Such corrective actions grow more severe each year. Waiting just until 2008, the end of the next presidency, would mean raising the payroll tax to 33. 5 percent instead of 32 percent, the study found.

Gokhale said that fresh numbers from the Medicare trustees show the fiscal gap has since grown to $72 trillion, $10 trillion of that for Social Security and an astonishing $62 trillion for Medicare, the government health care program for the elderly.

"The long-term picture is pretty bad," Gokhale said.

Election's absent issue

These numbers are seldom discussed, least of all in the 2004 presidential race. Ironically, as the Baby Boom retirement has neared -- and the remedies grow more painful -- political discussion has faded. Gone is Ross Perot's anti-deficit crusade. Gone is Newt Gingrich's call for Medicare restraint. Gone is Al Gore's "lockbox" for the Social Security surplus.

Instead, Kerry and Bush promise only to halve the current deficit in four years -- "both (of them) relying on pretty imaginative accounting to get there" said Burman -- while promising more spending and more tax cuts.

Yet today's deficit is a tiny fraction of the government's actual liabilities, which are so daunting they promise to make Bush's tax cuts a distant memory and Kerry's health care plan a fantasy.

While Bush and Kerry propose to address parts of the problem, "the numbers don't add up on either side," Walker said.

Medicare makes up the bulk of these liabilities, driven mainly by the expanding elderly population and rapidly rising health costs. Social Security, more often discussed as a looming problem, actually accounts for far less in future debt.

While Congress squabbles over whether the administration hid the new prescription drug benefit's 10-year cost -- pegged by the White House at $534 billion versus CBO's $395 billion -- the actual liability incurred by the new drug benefit is estimated at $8 trillion to $12 trillion.

Kerry and Democrats call the drug benefit inadequate. They would do little to restrain Medicare costs other than allowing the importation of price- controlled drugs from Canada.

Bush and Republicans added the drug benefit along with costly subsidies to providers. Even optimists do not expect their modest market reforms to cut costs.

Promises, promises

Kerry has promised not to cut Social Security. "I will not cut benefits," he said recently. "I will not raise the retirement age."

Democrats generally cite "trust fund" numbers that show Social Security - - and Medicare to a lesser extent -- remaining solvent for decades, even though government officials repeatedly call the numbers an accounting fiction. CBO director Douglas Holzt-Eakin last week said the funds contain nothing but "electronic chits" that measure government obligations to itself.

Bush proposes adding private accounts to Social Security for younger workers, which could reduce future government obligations, but would do so by diverting a portion of the payroll tax, adding $1 trillion to the short-term deficit. That might have been feasible when Bush took office in 2000 facing a projected $5.6 trillion surplus, but the surplus is gone. Similar plans in Congress that instead rely more on benefit cuts have gone nowhere.

"The country's absolutely broke, and both Bush and Kerry are being irresponsible in not addressing this problem," Kotlikoff said. "This administration and previous administrations have set us up for a major financial crisis on the order of what Argentina experienced a couple of years ago."

If this sounds far-fetched, former Bush Treasury Undersecretary Peter Fisher and former Clinton Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin both alluded to such a scenario at a June budget forum in Washington.

"Having been involved in markets for a long, long time," Rubin said, "I can tell you these things can change unexpectedly and without warning," referring to potential financial market reactions to the U.S. fiscal position.

Fisher warned of a "pivot point" when "the collective wisdom of bond traders thinks that the deficit horizon has turned," adding, "Both Bob and I are nervous."

The world has seen fiscal imbalances of this sort before, in Asia and Russia in the late 1990s and more recently in South America. Such financial panics can be triggered by any number of events -- a flight from Treasury bonds by the foreigners who buy much of the U.S. debt, for example -- if investors' views of the market, which are focused on the short term, suddenly change.

"If you look at financial crises, they occur seemingly overnight," said Kotlikoff. "More and more pieces of straw drop on the camel's back, and all of a sudden, the camel collapses. ... Nobody knew exactly what day Argentina was going to go south or exactly what day Russia was going to default. The timing is up for grabs."

But early signs of a problem are now appearing, analysts said, starting with the mounting deficits under Bush caused not just by the recession and terrorist attacks, but also by enormous spending increases and tax cuts. The brief window of surpluses that appeared during the late 1990s economic boom offered a chance to address long-range liabilities, but those surpluses now are gone.

"Maybe the public doesn't want to hear it," Kotlikoff said. "Maybe politicians think ... the American public can't understand the truth or hear the truth or bear the truth. I think this is garbage. I think that people care about their kids and grandchildren and need to know the dangers facing them -- and us."

Posted by manystrom at 03:17 PM

Politics
The Silent Swing Votes
September 12, 2004

OverseasVote - Press Release - September 9, 2004

Key absentee registration sites:

www.overseasvote.com, launched Feb 04, registered >38,000
www.overseasvote2004.com, launched late July 04, registered >20,000
www.tellanamericantovote.com, launched Mar 04, registered >5,000

3,000+ US citizens per day from over 150 countries are registering through these democratically-oriented sites…and this appears to be the tip of the iceberg.

All voters, regardless of political perspective may use the sites, but data suggest more than 95% of registrants at these sites support Kerry.
Since June, month-to-month registration growth exceeds 120%.

According to Federal Voting Assistance Program figures, 340,000 absentee ballot requests had been received as of July 1, 2004 – already 90,000 more than the total number of absentee ballots in 2000. More than 80% of OverseasVote’s registrations occurred after July 1, implying that the total number of potential overseas voters will exceed 1.8 million – an increase of 625%.

These overseas Americans are the ‘silent swing’ voters that at present are not reflected in any state or national poll numbers. They may well decide many swing states’ elections, and have a substantial impact on which party will control Congress and the White House.

State-by-state projection of likely absentee votes, based on OverseasVote site data:

California 260,000
New York 162,000
Florida 77,000
Texas 76,000
Massachusetts 64,000
Illinois 64,000
Pennsylvania 61,000
Michigan 58,000
Washington 55,000
Virginia 46,000
Ohio 45,000
Colorado 42,000
Minnesota 38,000
Oregon 35,000
North Carolina 29,000
Wisconsin 22,000

For more information: press@overseasvote.com
Voting enquiries: vote@overseasvote.com

Video news release is available

+852 2574 4293 or +852 9151 2316

Brett Rierson
______________

Regime change, one vote at a time...

US Citizens, register to vote at www.overseasvote.com

+852 9151 2316
+852 2574 4293

Posted by manystrom at 08:59 AM | Comments (0)
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