Apr 012019
 April 1, 2019  Posted by at 10:20 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,

JR-ART.net/AFP/Getty Collage by artist JR in the courtyard of the Louvre to mark 30th birthday of museum’s glass pyramid. 2019


Trump Is Going To Go Full-Animal On His Political Opponents – Bannon (Peters)
Trump Was Not Just Spied Upon But Entrapped (Simon)
Global Trade Takes Sharp Turn With Biggest Drop Since 2009 (ZH)
Theresa May’s Government Is On The Verge Of Meltdown (G.)
May’s Cabinet ‘Worst Example Of Discipline In British Political History’ (Ind.)
A Parliament of Fools (Coppola)
Fearing Brexit, Protesters Gather Along Irish Border (R.)
EU’s ‘Patience Over Brexit Coming To An End’ – Juncker (Ind.)
Erdogan Loses Capital In Turkey Election Blow (BBC)
TV Comic Leads First Round Of Ukraine’s Presidential Election (R.)



Curious to see who he’s going after. A lot of people will not like this.

Trump Is Going To Go Full-Animal On His Political Opponents – Bannon (Peters)

“I have a better education than them, I’m smarter than them, I went to the best schools; they didn’t. Much more beautiful house, much more beautiful apartment. Much more beautiful everything. And I’m president and they’re not,” declared Trump at his Michigan MAGA rally, refusing to take profit on the trade. You see, Mueller found him innocent of Russian collusion. And while the report stopped short of exonerating him for obstruction, Mueller’s overall ruling was an enormous windfall. A typical trader would take at least some profit, selling into the euphoria, rising above it all, extending a hand to broaden his base.

“Trump is going to go full-animal on his political opponents now that he’s no longer in the shadow of Mueller’s investigation,” predicted Bannon, the President’s former Chief Strategist. Steve’s usually right. And as Trump ordered OPEC to lower oil prices, his economic advisor Larry Kudlow and Federal Reserve nominee Stephen Moore called for an immediate 50bp interest rate cut from the Fed – desperate to fire up the economy heading into 2020. “The Democrats have to now decide whether they will continue defrauding the public with ridiculous bullshit, partisan investigations or whether they will apologize to the American people and join us to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure and bring down the cost of health care and prescription drugs,” taunted Trump.

And as his MAGA crowd went wild, replacing “Lock Her Up” with “AOC Sucks”, Democrats entered the five stages of grief: denial comes first, followed by anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. And naturally, it would be so much easier if the Dems could just take a loss. But in today’s internecine conflict, with tribes fighting for absolute victory or utter defeat, no one seems willing to extend a hand, take a profit or a loss and move onward, upward, as The United States of America.

Read more …

Stefan Halper.

Trump Was Not Just Spied Upon But Entrapped (Simon)

For all his New York rough-and-tumble, Trump was an innocent abroad when he arrived in Washington. Way back in January 2017, he was warned by old-timer Chuck Schumer that “intel officials have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you.” The Senate minority leader–Deep Stater par excellence–knew whereof he spoke. But Trump somehow survived the storm, although sometimes it seemed as if he wouldn’t. Now, some of the obvious parties –John K. Brennan and James Clapper with their apparatchik miens — have suddenly found themselves in the crosshairs [..]

More’s afoot here, however, considerably more because the entire American intelligence system and the unique power referred to by Schumer are also now in those same crosshairs, as they should be. But many of the men and women involved are less overtly Soviet in their style than Mssrs. Brennan and Clapper and slip more easily under the radar. Notable among these, and perhaps able to reveal much of the McGuffin to the mystery of where this all started and how, is Stefan Halper. Mr. Halper is “an American foreign policy scholar and Senior Fellow at the University of Cambridge where he is a Life Fellow at Magdalene College and directs the Department of Politics and International Studies.” He is also a spook who worked for Nixon, Ford, and Reagan, no less, and was a principle American connection to the UK’s MI-6.

Mr. Halper has (ahem) other connections: “A top FBI official admitted to Congressional investigators last year that the agency had contacts within the Trump campaign as part of operation “Crossfire Hurricane,” which sounds a lot like FBI “informant” Stefan Halper – a former Oxford University professor who was paid over $1 million by the Obama Department of Defense between 2012 and 2018, with nearly half of it surrounding the 2016 US election.”

Read more …

Not ideal for a presidential campaign, it would seem.

Global Trade Takes Sharp Turn With Biggest Drop Since 2009 (ZH)

According to the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis (CPB), world trade plunged to its weakest levels not seen since the financial crisis. The report published last week shows world trade expanded by 2.3% in January after the index tumbled in 4Q18. The recent rebound was broad-based with the strongest seen in emerging markets Asia (+6.2%), which followed a decline of -6.5% in December. The three-month global trade momentum shows a downward trend of -1.8%, indicating economic growth across the world continues to slide into 2Q. Bloomberg said, “that’s the biggest drop since May 2009.” On a y/y basis, global trade posted its first decline in nearly nine years in the three months.

The global 1H19 outlook remains in a cyclical downturn, which could hinder world trade further. The epicenter of the slowdown originates in China, which is partly due to a combination of China’s growth supercycle coming to an end, developed world economies slowing, Federal Reserve tightening monetary policy, and the US-China trade war that disrupted supply chains in Asia. This has global consequences: “For example, eurozone manufacturing PMI weakened to 47.6 in March according to Markit, marking the second consecutive month this year that manufacturing activity and export orders declined in the eurozone. The indices for January and February indicate contracting manufacturing activity in most of the east-Asian economies as well,” said ING.

Read more …

Looks like there may not be a way out at all.

Theresa May’s Government Is On The Verge Of Meltdown (G.)

Theresa May’s government is on the verge of meltdown as cabinet ministers prepare to clash over whether to support plans for a softer Brexit and a possible lengthy delay before leaving the European Union. In a decisive intervention, David Gauke, the justice secretary, said on Sunday that the prime minister would have to accept the possibility of backing a customs union if the measure is supported by parliament this week. This was dismissed by Brexiters, including those in cabinet, who have threatened to resign if May accepts a customs union or submits to a delay that goes beyond 22 May. Those threatening to quit were reported to include Penny Mordaunt, the international development secretary, and Chris Grayling, the transport secretary.

In another twist, Julian Smith, the chief whip, told the BBC on Monday that a softer Brexit was “inevitable” after the government lost its majority after the 2017 election. It comes as May and her dwindling number of supporters prepare to face a second round of “indicative” votes on alternatives to her deal on Monday. Concerned by the possibility of cabinet resignations, May is being urged by some ministers to allow a free vote on any customs union proposal. If parliament backs a customs union, ministers believe May will be forced to make a decision that will lead to resignations when the cabinet meets on Tuesday.

With 12 days before the UK is due to leave the EU, Gauke said the prime minister would have to “look very closely” if MPs back a customs union in a fresh round of indicative votes. “If parliament is voting overwhelmingly against leaving the European Union without a deal but is voting in favour of a softer Brexit, then I don’t think it’s sustainable to ignore parliament’s position and therefore leave without a deal,” Gauke said.

Read more …

“The thing that people forget is that the Conservative Party went to get a majority in order to deliver Brexit [and] failed to get a majority..”

May’s Cabinet ‘Worst Example Of Discipline In British Political History’ (Ind.)

Julian Smith has lashed out at Theresa May’s cabinet ministers for attempting to destabilise the prime minister, as he criticised them over the “worst example of discipline in British political history”. In an unprecedented intervention, the chief whip also criticised the government’s approach to Brexit, suggesting a softer exit from the bloc was inevitable after Ms May gambled away the Tories’ majority in 2017. The remarks from Mr Smith, who also confessed he is “knackered”, came as MPs prepare for string of key votes in the Commons on different Brexit options during the second round of “indicative votes” later today. “The thing that people forget is that the Conservative Party went to get a majority in order to deliver Brexit [and] failed to get a majority,” the chief whip told the BBC.

He added: “The government as a whole probably should just have been clearer on the consequences of that. The parliamentary arithmetic would mean that this would be inevitably a softer type of Brexit.” While the strategy was apparently misjudged, Mr Smith said he was “frustrated” by MPs who “don’t see the light as clearly as I do”. However Mr Smith highlighted that a lack of discipline extended all the way to the Cabinet, with ministers “sitting around the Cabinet table … trying to destabilise her [Mrs May]”. Pointing to the lack of discipline at the top levels of government, he claimed: “As you aware discipline is not as good as it should be. This is I think the worst example of ill-discipline in Cabinet in British political history.”

Read more …

More votes today.

A Parliament of Fools (Coppola)

March 29 came and went without any change in the U.K.’s relationship with the EU. For now, the U.K. remains an EU member. But the U.K. Parliament has now rejected the proposed Withdrawal Agreement for a third time. Unless there is a major political shift in the next two weeks, the country is on course for no-deal Brexit on April 12. For the Leave supporters who gathered outside Parliament on March 29, April 12 can’t come soon enough. They had planned a celebration, but instead found themselves protesting at what they see as betrayal by the U.K. Government. Furiously angry, they are now worried that Parliament could try to secure a much longer delay or perhaps a second referendum. They have reason to be worried. On Monday, April 1, Parliament will vote on a set of alternative proposals.

The votes won’t commit the government to any particular course of action, but they will indicate what Parliament’s preferred outcome might be. The proposals likely to be up for consideration include a permanent customs union, which Theresa May has previously ruled out but is implied in the Political Declaration. There is also likely to be a vote on whether to hold a second referendum to “confirm” Parliament’s eventual choice. However, the previous set of “indicative votes,” taken on Wednesday March 27, resulted in no majority for anything. True, Parliament resoundingly rejected no-deal Brexit, but it was completely unable to agree on what alternative form Brexit should take, or even if it should happen at all. If this second set of votes is equally inconclusive, then no-deal Brexit it will be, unless by some miracle Mrs. May manages to persuade Parliament to vote for her ghastly deal after all.

Read more …

Someone suggested Good Friday is more important than the Magna Carta.

Fearing Brexit, Protesters Gather Along Irish Border (R.)

Anti-Brexit campaigners protested at six different points of the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland on Saturday, fearing a return of customs checks could risk peace, jobs and their way of life. The currently seamless 500 km (350 mile) border would be the United Kingdom’s only land frontier with the EU after Brexit and the question of how it is kept open has become a major hurdle in efforts to ensure the UK quits the bloc in an orderly fashion. Organisers estimated more than 1,000 locals gathered from the northwest village of Bridgend to Carrickcarnon on the east coast, two of the more than 200 crossings that some 30,000 people cross each day for work.

“People are very concerned, they voted to remain (in the EU) here,” said John Sheridan, a farmer from the Border Communities Against Brexit group who led the protest in the Northern Ireland border village of Belcoo. “We feel like we’re going to be left behind again and have a border imposed on us.” The group also held a candle-lit vigil across the border in the Irish village of Kiltyclogher at 2300 GMT on Friday, when Britain had been scheduled to leave the EU until its departure was extended by at least two weeks. It has held other protests since the 2016 Brexit referendum and again erected mock customs checkpoints on Saturday, to demonstrate the disruption they could cause and the resistance their return would meet.

Read more …

The EU is not exactly losing on this one. So it’s a headache, but it’s also winner takes all.

EU’s ‘Patience Over Brexit Coming To An End’ – Juncker (Ind.)

The EU is running out of patience with Britain over Brexit, the president of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker has warned. In an interview with Italian state TV, Mr Juncker said he would like MPs in the UK to be able to reach an agreement over the way forward in the coming days. “We have had a lot of patience with our British friends but patience is coming to an end,” he told RAI. The commission president added: “So far we know what the British parliament says no to, but we don’t know what it might say yes to.” Asked if a second referendum might be possible, Mr Juncker said that was an issue exclusively for the British people.

His words were reported by his deputy chief spokesman Mina Andreeva. She tweeted that Mr Juncker had told the Italian interviewer he would “like that the UK tells us which way they want to follow now”. It comes ahead of a series of key votes in Parliament on Monday which could pave the way for a “softer” Brexit. Several Tory ministers have urged Theresa May to heed the will of MPs if they manage to unite around a customs union during the second round of “indicative votes”.

Read more …

He doesn’t care. He can use this to show Turkey’s a democracy.

Erdogan Loses Capital In Turkey Election Blow (BBC)

The party of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lost control of the capital, Ankara, in local elections in a setback to his 16 years in power. The opposition is also ahead in the contest for mayor of the largest city, Istanbul, the election commission says. Nationally, the president’s AKP-led alliance has won more than 51% of the vote in the municipal elections. The vote, see as a verdict on Mr Erdogan’s rule, has been taking place during an economic downturn. The currency, the lira, has been losing value recently and the economy went into recession in the last three months of 2018. The president had previously said the poll was about the “survival” of the country and his party. Commenting on the results in a speech on Sunday, he said: “If there are any shortcomings, it is our duty to correct them.”

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Can’t believe the US isn’t first in electing as president someone who plays a president on TV or in the movies.

TV Comic Leads First Round Of Ukraine’s Presidential Election (R.)

The actor and comedian Volodymyr Zelenskiy has taken a commanding lead in the first round of the Ukraine’s presidential elections, early results have shown. With just over half of the ballots counted early on Monday, Zelenskiy had 30.2% of the votes. The incumbent president, Petro Poroshenko, was in a distant second place with 16.6% followed by former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko on 13%, the national elections commission said. The results were closely in line with a major exit poll. The final results were expected to be announced later on Monday. With no one expected to secure a majority, a runoff with the leading two candidates will be held on 21 April.

As the results of exit polling were announced, a cheer erupted at Zelenskiy’s headquarters in a sleek lounge in Kyiv. The candidate was mobbed as he made his way to a stage to say thank you to his supporters. The vote could see a comedy actor with no political experience move a step closer to becoming the country’s next president. Zelenskiy, who plays the president in the television series Servant of the People, had been the favourite to win Sunday’s vote in a rebuke of the country’s leadership.

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Home Forums Debt Rattle April 1 2019

This topic contains 12 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  democritus 6 months, 2 weeks ago.

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    JR-ART.net/AFP/Getty Collage by artist JR in the courtyard of the Louvre to mark 30th birthday of museum’s glass pyramid. 2019   • Trump Is Going
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle April 1 2019]


    V. Arnold

    JR-ART.net/AFP/Getty Collage by artist JR in the courtyard of the Louvre to mark 30th birthday of museum’s glass pyramid. 2019

    Interesting that is shown as an archeological dig; I kind of like the imagery…

    “This is going to be the most vitriolic period in American history since before the Civil War,” Steve Bannon predicts of the next few months. President Trump is “going to get off the chain…it’s going to be payback,” he tells @RichardEngel. “People better strap in and watch it.”

    I find this amusing; off the chain?
    Oh please; Trump will tow the line, or end up like Kennedy…
    The U.S. “government” is bought and owned; 2020 is a done deal already.
    The future is assured; at least within the U.S.; the world is in the process of alignments; multipolarity is assured; but peace is far from certain…


    Dr. D

    The Pyramid. Such symbolism.

    “the report stopped short of exonerating him for obstruction”

    If there was no crime, what was he obstructing? His innocence? It never ends in the land of lies.

    “But in today’s internecine conflict, with tribes fighting for absolute victory or utter defeat, no one seems willing to extend a hand, take a profit or a loss and move on”

    That’s the continuing irony. If they would let it go, they could easily and successfully attack him for what he IS doing. Imagine if they had taken all the effort of all the Maddows of the world and applied it to jobs, the environment, and healthcare? Nope.

    “Trump was an innocent abroad.” “Trump somehow survived the storm”

    Nope. He was an insider from way back, doing cameos and raising his profile, having been a protégé of GOP Nixon back when. Army Intelligence, particularly the Marines and unexpectedly the NSA, got him in and covered for him. What, 15 assassination attempts so far? So it’s Military Intel vs CIA/Deep State, as described in Schumer’s open threat. If you don’t know this sort of thing, nothing makes sense. He is as far from a babe in the woods or a bumbler as can be. But hey, since believing that, and their arrogance, has destroyed them, and three years later, still running the exact same pass play, run with it. Trump may not be a genius, but he has the mind of Military Intel behind him, and says things like ‘he has a better wife and house’ because that’s how to get the goat of the shallow narcissistic sociopaths he’s fighting. And it works like a charm, although other than their mental disorder, I can’t imagine why. It’s just dumb, but if it works…

    “Global Trade Takes Sharp Turn with Biggest Drop Since 2009 (ZH)”

    Trump’s economy is so great, housing is dropping, 400 retailers are closing, and we have to panic-drop interest rates from practically zero.

    “Theresa May’s Government Is On The Verge Of Meltdown (G.)”

    Ukraine and Italy have the answer. The only response to this nonsense is to elect a comedian, stat! Only they have the tools to work in this environment.

    “Someone suggested Good Friday is more important than the Magna Carta.”

    Apparently they’ve never read the Magna Charta.

    “fearing a return of customs checks could risk peace, jobs and their way of life.”

    Doesn’t the EU have quite a number of such borders, as in Denmark? Do we not have the technology to move horses and carts through a tollbooth beside a policeman? Or are they afraid there won’t be a border or security? Because in the U.S. we aren’t allowed to have a border at all, and it doesn’t seem to be a concern or anything here. Just let everyone and everything through! Cocaine, guns, girls, children, everything. Works for us! Only racists have border crossings and checkpoints.

    “The EU is running out of patience with Britain over Brexit,”

    He’s hilarious. Or else what, Jean? You’ll invade when Britain has an army nearly as large as Europe combined? You’ll cut off British trade and collapse your own economy in Spain and Germany? No, despite empty posturing by empty suits, you’ll all work it out. It won’t be pretty and smooth and the wrong people will lose money, which is what it’s really all about, but it will happen because it has to.


    Dr. D

    “Sterling Surges As MPs Prepare For 2nd ‘Indicative Vote'”

    So since Sterling swerves every time, there’s billions being made each time they vote. So as many votes as possible to fill their bankruptcy? And who’s taking home the money they’re arranging to be made?

    They make Congresses’ insider trading look like penny poker.



    Bannon’s take is probably correct. After all, Trump has already threatened his opponents with the military, the police and his brownshirts (Bikers For Trump). Since we are politically active environmentalists in Trump country, I will not be surprised to see them coming down the driveway.

    We shall all see how Trump handles this next set of environmental disasters that are building to a crescendo. The floods are going to hit Trump territory so I expect there will be a genuine effort to help victims.

    The other day Maxwell Quest responded to a comment of mine with a thoughtful response. I was unable to answer in a timely manner. This is a very busy time of year and I’m old and I get tired.

    MQ’s argument that Trump is keeping us from nuclear war would certainly be compelling if I could ignore the massive increase in defense spending under Trump. This includes an upgrade to the nuclear arsenal and the “Space Force.” Selling weapons to the Saudis for use against innocents in Yemen benefits Kushner and his bankers, but I fail to see it as keeping us out of war.

    I completely agree that Clinton’s stint as Secretary of State with her neocon handlers was horrible. It absolutely accelerated the decline of the empire and had she been elected President, war was inevitable. She was not my candidate.

    Is the Clinton corruption as bad as Trump’s? Yup.

    “Patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings. Steal a little and they throw you in jail, Steal a lot and they make you king.” Bobby Dylan

    Nursery order coming today. Dig we must.


    democritus comment from yesterday’s Debt Rattle, posted today:

    If we have another referendum do we have to take into account the two and a half year pro-remain campaign by the Independent? or do we just write that off as “news” about the future? Or maybe we just wipe the slate clean and have a token period of unbiased reporting.

    I’ll repeat whatever I wrote on Friday: get a national (unity) government, and leave all this behind, or face the consequences. There are too many different opinions that are too far apart, and you guys will largely still have to co-exist on the same patch of land post-this blame someone anyone match.

    At some point., it no longer matters who’s right or wrong, you need to look forward and see what you can do to make the future bearable for everyone, not just you and those who think like you.


    Got this mail from Google AdSense today; I have no idea what these people want, and they give me no way to find out. Apparently, someone violated something. But who did what, when, how? I have no way of knowing. They won’t tell me.

    Dear Publisher,

    This Google Publisher Policy Report gives you an overview of recent activity related to violations found on specific pages of your websites. As enforcement statuses may change over time, please refer to the “Page-level enforcements” section of the AdSense Policy Center for the current list of active violations.

    Please note this report doesn’t cover violations that may happen on an overall site or account level. You may be notified by a separate email if site or account level violations are found. Ads will continue to serve where no policy violations have been found, either at the page- or site-level.

    In the last 24 hours:

    New violations were detected. As a result, ad serving has been restricted or disabled on pages where these violations of the AdSense Program Policies were found. To resolve the issues, you can either remove the violating content and request a review, or remove the ad code from the violating pages.

    Further details on enforcements can be found in the AdSense Help Center. To learn more about our program policies, please view the AdSense Program Policies.

    Kind regards,
    Google Publisher Policy


    V. Arnold

    Try Yandex; much more better… 😉



    AdSense ??
    It sound like we will not be privileged to see ads on our pages.



    How much funding does ad sense bring in annually? Is it worth it ? Can we as a community detach from from teat of the demon and help Illargi be free financially? What would it take 20 or 30 o 100 daily readers to donate?


    No man is an island,

    I’ll address that soon. Ad revenues have decreased by 85% or more due to ad blockers anyway, so I need to come up with a plan for all this.


    V. Arnold

    Ilargi; you have talked about Patron, but so far no show, how come?
    I’m waiting to donate via Patron as soon as possible.



    I don’t know how we would get a national unity government.

    As parliament agrees on only one thing: that it is opposed to everything, and it is too late to do anything now because of EU elections, I suggest that the queen dissolve parliament and revokes article 50.

    In the longer term we could have a referendum on England leaving the UK. That would solve the Irish and Scottish problems. Maybe Wales would like to join us.

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