Mar 072021
 March 7, 2021  Posted by at 10:14 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,

Vincent van Gogh Red Vineyards at Arles 1888


American Rescue Plan Could Set Stage for $4 Trillion of Debt (CRFB)
Yellen Coddles Up to Powell on Rising Long-Term Yields (WS)
Italy’s Government Is Outsourcing Its Economic Strategy To McKinsey (Jac.)
US Covid Cases Continue To Decline After Brief Plateau (JTN)
Connecticut Lifting All Covid-19 Capacity Restrictions On Businesses (F.)
The Nightingale Alternative (Gillian Dymond)
Trump Sends Legal Notice To GOP To Stop Using His Name (Pol.)
Congressmen Demand Twitter’s Internal Docs Regarding Trump Censorship (JTN)
Is China Hacking Random Servers To Put Itself Into A Bad Light? (MoA)
Bitcoin Could Soon Run Head First Into US Money Laundering Laws (ZH)
The Dark Side Of “Eating Lower On The Food Chain” (Turchin)
Mobile Devices Alter Children’s Minds, Change How They Perceive The World (JTN)





Jack Posobiec: Trump sent $1800 stimulus out, Biden sent $1400 but if you look closely you may start to notice the media being slightly biased about this story.

Kevin Gosztola: Jobless benefits were $600/week for 4 months in the COVID-19 relief that passed under Trump in March 2020. Biden and Senate Democrats are cutting jobless benefits for citizens in crisis to $300/week for same period—half of what passed in GOP-controlled Senate.





Already, people will get $1,400 checks, while the rescue will cost them some $5,700 each.

American Rescue Plan Could Set Stage for $4 Trillion of Debt (CRFB)

The American Rescue Plan Act is estimated to cost over $1.9 trillion through 2031, but the ultimate price tag could be twice as high if some of the policies in the bill are extended beyond their current expiration dates. The bill includes several extensions of tax credits that supporters have previously proposed on a permanent basis and several temporary economic relief measures that are slated to end before the economy has fully recovered. If the tax credits were made permanent and these relief measures were extended for the duration of the crisis, it would raise the total cost of the bill to $3.8 trillion through 2031, or $4.1 trillion with interest.

Several measures in the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act that provide temporary relief are likely to be extended past their expiration dates. Most significantly, expanded unemployment benefits would expire at the end of August (though that may soon be changed to September), after which all unemployed workers would lose the benefit supplement and many would lose benefits entirely. In addition, a 15 percent increase in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits would end in September, after which benefits would immediately snap back to their previous level. Other smaller relief efforts also end abruptly. Extensions of these policies are likely in our view. While the actual cost would depend on the length and nature of those extensions, we believe a reasonable extension and phase-out scenario could cost roughly $300 billion.

More substantially, the American Rescue Plan Act includes one- or two-year versions of several longstanding policy priorities of President Biden’s or Congressional Democrats’. It includes over $100 billion for a one-year expansion of the Child Tax Credit (CTC), which increases the credit from $2,000 to $3,000 (or $3,600 for children under age 6) and makes it fully refundable. The bill also includes a $15 billion, one-year expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for childless workers that many have been seeking for years, and an $8 billion expansion of the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC), which closely matches President Biden’s campaign proposal to increase the maximum credit from $2,100 to $8,000 and from covering 35 percent of expenses to 50 percent of expenses. Finally, the legislation includes a $35 billion, 2-year increase in Affordable Care Act premium subsidies that closely matches a similar proposal in President Biden’s campaign plan and $10 billion in small Medicaid expansions that last five years.

Making the expanded CTC permanent would cost an additional $1.1 trillion, assuming the expiring provisions in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), which boosted the credit from $1,000 to $2,000 and eliminated the dependent exemption, are eventually extended or the policy is modified after 2026. Relative to current law, we estimate this would cost more like $1.5 trillion. Meanwhile, making the EITC and CDCTC extensions permanent would cost over $200 billion, and making the health care provisions permanent would cost about $250 billion. Altogether, we estimate these potential extensions would cost $1.9 trillion before interest, boosting the overall cost of the bill to $4.1 trillion when interest is included.

Read more …

“The Wall Street crybabies are clamoring for this because massive highly leveraged bets on Treasury securities are producing massive losses.”

Yellen Coddles Up to Powell on Rising Long-Term Yields (WS)

It seems to be a rare sight that a Treasury Secretary and a Fed Chair color-coordinate their comments about rising long-term yields. On Friday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen in an interview on PBS NewsHour echoed what Fed Chair Jerome Powell had said on Thursday in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. When Yellen was asked about the rising long-term yields that the crybabies on Wall Street are getting so nervous about, Yellen said in her quiet manner: “Long term interest rates have gone up some, but mainly I think because market participants are seeing a stronger recovery, as we have success with getting people vaccinated and a strong fiscal package that’s going to get people back to work.” “Rising interest rates don’t concern you?” she was then asked.

“I think they’re a sign that the economy is getting back on track, and market participants see that, and they expect a stronger economy,” Yellen said. “And instead of inflation lingering below levels that are desirable for years on end, they’re beginning to see inflation get back to a normal range of around 2%.” And inflation may rise more than that, but it’s going to be transitory, she said. So on Friday, the Treasury 10-year yield rose to 1.57%, still ludicrously low, given the outlook on inflation, and given the Fed’s insistence that it will let inflation run over 2% – as measured by “core PCE,” the inflation measure that nearly always produces the lowest inflation readings in the US. But that 1.57% was nevertheless the highest since February 14, 2020:

The spread between the Treasury 2-year yield (0.14%) and the 10-year yield (1.57%) widened to 1.43 percentage points. By this measure, the yield curve is the steepest since November 2015:

This rise in the 10-year yield has set off clamoring among the crybabies on Wall Street for the Fed to do something to bring them down. They have already outlined the remedies, including prominently another “Operation Twist,” where the Fed sells Treasury securities with short maturities and buys Treasury securities with long maturities. This concentrated buying of long-dated Treasuries would raise their prices and thereby push down their yields. The Wall Street crybabies are clamoring for this because massive highly leveraged bets on Treasury securities are producing massive losses.

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This must be crossing some line.

Italy’s Government Is Outsourcing Its Economic Strategy To McKinsey (Jac.)

Upon its formation last month, Mario Draghi’s new government was heralded by almost all Italian and international media as a rescue operation. Where the former European Central Bank (ECB) chief Draghi had “saved the euro” in the 2010s, most outlets gushed over “Super Mario” and his plan to “save Italy” by splashing a mooted €209 billion in European recovery fund cash while “reforming” its lackluster economy. The kind of “reforms” this meant went unmentioned — and after all, this government bears no relation to voter decisions, or the coalitions that ran in the last general election. But for the fourth time since the 1990s, a president called on a technocrat from the world of finance and banking to form a cabinet, halfway through a parliament. Eight of Draghi’s twenty-three ministers are unelected technocrats, in a so-called government of experts.

If these figures are not party-political, they have similar backgrounds and instincts. Economy minister Daniele Franco is a former Bank of Italy official who drafted the famous 2011 ECB letter instructing the government to implement privatizations and cut back collective bargaining. Former Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao — today innovation and digital transition minister — is a former partner at private consultants McKinsey & Company. Now, it has been revealed that McKinsey is going to be tasked with writing Italy’s economic plan for the coming period, to be submitted for review by the European Commission at the end of next month. Notorious for its role in the Enron scandal as well as the 2008 financial crisis — as it promoted the boundless securitization of mortgage assets — and the botched vaccine rollout in France, the firm is now being called on to shape the Draghi government’s “reform” agenda.

La Repubblica, the country’s leading center-left daily, gushed over the move. “Faced with a race against time,” Draghi’s government “has assumed the position of a private corporation faced with a new business opportunity that isn’t part of its core activities.” While this same paper reported on March 1 that the need for “hurry” meant Draghi himself would write the recovery plan, together with finance minister Franco, this has now been outsourced. The suggestion that this is a purely “technical” collaboration — that McKinsey’s choices will not be political — is patently absurd, not least given that this claim is also widely made for Draghi’s “technical” government itself. For decades, the imposition of neoliberal recipes in Italy has been advanced through this same procedure, with the agenda advanced by privatizers couched in the dogma of “unavoidable choices.”

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And still nobody knows why?!

US Covid Cases Continue To Decline After Brief Plateau (JTN)

Daily new COVID-19 cases in the United States have continued declining after a brief plateau following a sharp drop from the beginning of the year. Cases have declined steeply since early January, baffling scientists who are struggling to explain the unexpected drop in COVID activity, particularly after weeks of dire warnings from health officials about the potential for a post-holiday spike. That decline leveled out in late February, with daily average case numbers appearing to be on a slightly upward trajectory at one point, leading experts to warn that positive test results could be preparing to explode again.

Yet cases appear to be dropping again, according to several data sources. The COVID Tracking Project indicates that daily average case numbers began slowly decreasing again around Feb. 27 and have continued on that downward trend over the past week. Likewise, the data website Worldometers also identifies average daily case numbers beginning a new decline at right around the same day. According to COVID Tracking, COVID-19 hospitalizations have continued on a seemingly unabated downward trajectory since early January, on Friday reaching levels not seen since late October.

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Not all restrictions.

Connecticut Lifting All Covid-19 Capacity Restrictions On Businesses (F.)

Connecticut will lift all capacity limits on certain businesses including restaurants, gyms, offices and houses of worship starting March 19, Gov. Ned Lamont announced Thursday, going further than most other Democratic-led states to roll back Covid-19 restrictions even as public health officials advise governors not to do so. Restaurants, retail businesses, libraries, personal services, indoor recreation facilities, gyms, fitness centers, museums, aquariums, zoos, offices and houses of worship will all have their capacity limits repealed. Social distancing protocols will still be in place and face masks will be required, and there will be some restrictions: theaters will remain restricted to 50% capacity, restaurants are limited to eight people per table and must close at 11 p.m. and bars that only serve beverages will still be closed entirely.

The state’s mask mandate will remain in effect. Gathering limits on social and recreational gatherings will also be increased March 19 to 25 people indoors and 100 people outdoors at a private residence, or 100 people indoors and 200 outdoors at a commercial venue. On April 2, the state will open outdoor amusement parks, open indoor stadiums at 10% capacity and increase occupancy at outdoor event venues to 50% capacity or up to 10,000 people. Connecticut will be one of only a few Democratic-led states to have such relaxed capacity restrictions: Virginia does not have capacity restrictions at restaurants or places of worship but does at gyms, Wisconsin’s capacity limit order has expired and Kansas’ restrictions are determined by county, with many having few or no limits.

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“..depriving us all of autonomy and of the comforting, real-world support of friends and family, and robbing the less fortunate among us of health, of livelihoods, and, in the worst cases, of life itself.”

The Nightingale Alternative (Gillian Dymond)

It is a year now since I last took a train: a short return trip, from Leamington Spa to Oxford. On the journey out, I was lucky enough to find a seat in which, for some forty minutes, I shared the air with my fellow travellers. At Oxford station I rubbed shoulders with a multiplicity of strangers as I joined the throng surging towards the exit and proceeding slowly through the congested barriers, then made my way along busy streets, brushing against other human beings on the narrow pavements. At the Ashmolean I met a friend, and together we mingled freely with the rest of the visitors at the well-frequented Rembrandt exhibition, then chatted at length over a late lunch in the museum café, where the tables – disdaining any hint of anti-social distancing – were full to capacity.

Later, after a walk through Christchurch Meadow and along the river, exchanging smiles and occasionally the odd word with those I passed along the way, I spent some time browsing the shelves of Blackwell’s in daring proximity with other booklovers before deciding on a purchase and braving the jostle of the station platform to board a packed train back to Leamington. It was a very ordinary day – a day passed without fear as I came into contact with numerous unknown people, some of whom, no doubt, were suffering from the common cold or harbouring incipient or suppressed symptoms of influenza or even of Covid-19 (which, as we now know, had already been on the loose for several, possibly many, months at that time). Not for a moment did this disturb me.

Like all those in good health and unafflicted by obsessive-compulsive disorder, I judged the hasard of stepping out boldly into the microbial soup which surrounds and permeates our existence to be a risk worth taking in exchange for the spontaneous social interaction without which human beings cannot thrive. I never guessed that this could be the last time I would be free to enjoy a day of such unexceptionable pleasures. True, rumblings of the pandemic had been growing over the previous weeks, but memories of previous damp squibs – SARS, bird flu, swine flu – which the worst-case speculations of computer-modellers had repeatedly failed to ignite encouraged me to hope that present reports from China and Italy, too, would soon fade into a penumbra of failed sensationalism.

[..] And the lockdowns, distancing and masking began. For close on a year now official statistics and figures spun out by a team of approved government experts into webs of cautionary speculation have justified rule by decree, depriving us all of autonomy and of the comforting, real-world support of friends and family, and robbing the less fortunate among us of health, of livelihoods, and, in the worst cases, of life itself. To anyone with the most rudimentary understanding of economic interdependence, the consequences of this decision to quarantine the whole nation were obvious from the start, and were uncannily favourable to the objectives of Agendas 21 and 2030, as handed down from the UN, via national administrations, to local governments throughout the world: but the people of the UK, it seemed, were convinced by the official “narrative”, thousands of them assembling on their doorsteps each Thursday evening to shake their fists at The Virus, and demonstrate solidarity with the NHS.

Read more …

Ha ha!

“As one of President Trump’s MOST LOYAL supporters, I think that YOU, deserve the great honor of adding your name to the Official Trump ‘Thank You’ Card.”

Trump Sends Legal Notice To GOP To Stop Using His Name (Pol.)

Lawyers for former President DONALD TRUMP sent out cease-and-desist letters Friday to the three largest fundraising entities for the Republican Party — the RNC, NRCC and NRSC — for using his name and likeness on fundraising emails and merchandise, a Trump adviser tells Playbook. We reported yesterday that Trump was furious that his name has been bandied about by organizations that help Republicans who voted to impeach him — without his permission. Trump, who made his fortune in licensing, has always been sensitive to how his name has been used to fundraise and support members, even while in office.

On Friday, the RNC sent out two emails asking supporters to donate as a way to add their name to a “thank you” card for Trump. “President Trump will ALWAYS stand up for the American People, and I just thought of the perfect way for you to show that you support him!” the email states. “As one of President Trump’s MOST LOYAL supporters, I think that YOU, deserve the great honor of adding your name to the Official Trump ‘Thank You’ Card.” A follow-up email was sent hours later to “President Trump’s TOP supporters” warning of a deadline of 10 hours to get their names on the card.

None of the committees returned a request for comment. But privately GOP campaign types say it’s impossible not to use Trump’s name, as his policies are so popular with the base. If Trump really wants to help flip Congress, they argue he should be more generous. His team, however, sees this differently. “President Trump remains committed to the Republican Party and electing America First conservatives, but that doesn’t give anyone – friend or foe – permission to use his likeness without explicit approval,” said a Trump adviser.

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They’ll refuse.

Congressmen Demand Twitter’s Internal Docs Regarding Trump Censorship (JTN)

Two Republican representatives are renewing a demand that Twitter hand over internal documents regarding its decisions to censor and moderate content on its platforms, accusing the tech company of harboring significant bias against a large part of its user base. Reps. Jim Jordan and Ken Buck claimed in a letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey this week that Twitter itself has played “a leading role in silencing and censoring political speech of conservative Americans.” The letter repeats a request that Jordan lodged last summer with which Twitter reportedly did not comply.

“In recent months, Twitter throttled the dissemination of a mainstream newspaper article critical of then-candidate Joe Biden’s son,” they wrote in the letter, “and later took the unprecedented step of de-platforming the sitting President of the United States. If Twitter can do this to the President of the United States, it can do it to any American for any reason.” The politicians demanded that Twitter hand over “an accounting of all content moderation decisions made by Twitter over the past year for users located within the United States, including which Twitter rule or policy the user allegedly violated and the content of the moderated tweet,” as well as “all documents and communications” related to its decision to censor several of then-President Donald Trump’s tweets last year.

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“Why would a state sponsored hacking campaign, especially from China, actually want that? Why would China want to attract more negative news about its country?”

Is China Hacking Random Servers To Put Itself Into A Bad Light? (MoA)

In January 2021, through its Network Security Monitoring service, Volexity detected anomalous activity from two of its customers’ Microsoft Exchange servers. Volexity identified a large amount of data being sent to IP addresses it believed were not tied to legitimate users. A closer inspection of the IIS logs from the Exchange servers revealed rather alarming results. … Through its analysis of system memory, Volexity determined the attacker was exploiting a zero-day server-side request forgery (SSRF) vulnerability in Microsoft Exchange (CVE-2021-26855). The attacker was using the vulnerability to steal the full contents of several user mailboxes. This vulnerability is remotely exploitable and does not require authentication of any kind, nor does it require any special knowledge or access to a target environment. The attacker only needs to know the server running Exchange and the account from which they want to extract e-mail.

The hackers used four different zero-day security holes in Exchange Server products. A zero-day security hole is one that was previously unknown and has never been used before. To find new zero-day security holes is difficult and expensive. But after they are found and made operational they are often easy to use. Whoever did this hack has invested quite some effort. Besides extracting emails the hackers also installed backdoors that give them remote access to the hacked Exchange systems. On March 2 Microsoft released patches for the four security holes. In its release it accused China of being behind the hack:

“Today, we’re sharing information about a state-sponsored threat actor identified by the Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) that we are calling Hafnium. Hafnium operates from China, and this is the first time we’re discussing its activity. It is a highly skilled and sophisticated actor. Historically, Hafnium primarily targets entities in the United States for the purpose of exfiltrating information from a number of industry sectors, including infectious disease researchers, law firms, higher education institutions, defense contractors, policy think tanks and NGOs. While Hafnium is based in China, it conducts its operations primarily from leased virtual private servers (VPS) in the United States.”

[..] The attribution Microsoft makes is in light of the above quite weak. The direct attacks came from rented virtual private servers within the U.S. These were, says Microsoft, operated through machines in China. But how does Microsoft know who has actually control over those machines in China? Could they not be hacked too? Couldn’t the real actors sit anywhere on this planet and access them through the Internet? Microsoft also says that its attribution is “based on observed victimology, tactics and procedures”. The victims are described as “infectious disease researchers, law firms, higher education institutions, defense contractors, policy think tanks and NGOs”.

For a state sponsored campaign, especially one that burns four expensive zero-days, that victimology is unusually wide. It practically guaranteed that the attack would be detected fairly soon. “Tactics and procedures” are something that is even harder to attribute than the code used in the attack. Microsoft details some of these: “HAFNIUM has previously compromised victims by exploiting vulnerabilities in internet-facing servers, and has used legitimate open-source frameworks, like Covenant, for command and control. Once they’ve gained access to a victim network, HAFNIUM typically exfiltrates data to file sharing sites like MEGA.

This hack used legitimate open source tools that are widely available and are also used by many cybercrime organizations and secret services. What then are the specific ‘tactics and procedures’ which attribute this to China? Microsoft won’t say. There is also a fact that the hackers have gone into overdrive as soon as Microsoft released the patches. They now infect any system they can find. That surely will result in an extreme amount of international publicity. Why would a state sponsored hacking campaign, especially from China, actually want that? Why would China want to attract more negative news about its country? Could there be some other country that has an interest in pushing public accusations against China by linking it to massive global hacking campaign?

Read more …

Governments and central banks want control.

Bitcoin Could Soon Run Head First Into US Money Laundering Laws (ZH)

Among the challenges in regulating bitcoin will be the Biden administration’s handling of recent anti-money laundering laws put into place by the Trump administration pertaining to bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. The rules, implemented at the last-minute by the Trump administration, seek requirements for financial services firms to report identities of cryptocurrency holders, according to Bloomberg. The point of the rules is to stop attempts to use crypto as a means of transferring money illicitly. Lobbying against the regulations are “heavyweights from both K Street and Wall Street”, according to Bloomberg, including Fidelity and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber of Commerce has said the rule would have “unintended long-term consequences” on the virtual currency industry.

Also lobbying against the rule have been “Republican lawmakers, including former Representative Cynthia Lummis, who is now a Wyoming senator; Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton and Democratic Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii”. The rules were implemented by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network or FinCEN, after President Trump lost the 2020 election. The move drew criticism and even the threat of lawsuits from pro-crypto trade groups. The rule would require filings to the Treasury every time a customer moves at least $10,000 worth of virtual currency into a wallet not hosted at an exchange. These are similar to the reports that banks already send under existing AML laws when customers take out $10,000 or more in cash.

The regulation would also require banks and exchanges to keep records of customers who send $3,000 or more of virtual currencies to someone else’s unhosted wallet. Obviously, such regulation would maim one of bitcoin’s biggest “assets”: the ability to transfer money anonymously and “outside the system”. Should Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen move forward with the rules, crypto services could wind up becoming more expensive – and some cryptocurrencies could even disappear altogether.

Read more …

Nice take.

The Dark Side Of “Eating Lower On The Food Chain” (Turchin)

Nine years ago I made one of the most consequential decisions of my life—I switched to the so-called Paleo Diet (“paleo” is a bit misleading, as I explain in the post). Had I not done so, I would certainly have contributed to the rising obesity statistics for the United States. Within six months of switching to Paleo diet I lost 20 pounds before equilibrating at my current weight. But weight is actually the least important thing. Much more important was a dramatic improvement of my general health I experienced in the months since switching. I feel better today than ten years ago, despite being (obviously enough) ten years older. The major change was eating much higher on the food chain. The only way to get protein on a purely plant-based diet is to eat grains and pulses, which means wheat and beans.

But those are precisely the foods elimination of which resulted in my health improvement. I sometimes unknowingly consume small amounts of wheat, when a restaurant chef uses flour for the sauce (despite explicit entreaties not do so). The next day I know that I had been poisoned. The other thing is that it’s not just protein deficiency. Your body doesn’t need that much protein. The biggest problem with purely plant diet is that you don’t get enough healthful fat. Instead you end up poisoning yourself with seed oils. This is why I watch with increasing alarm the current trend to “cancel” meat. Last year the town of Cambridge, home of one of two best universities in UK, banned meat. So Cambridge is now off my list of places to go to (fortunately, I visited it years ago, when it was still safe for carnivores).

I am very worried that the veganism tide will continue spreading, leaving us carnivores on reservations (or even driving people following Paleo diet to extinction). Somebody is sure to immediately accuse me that I don’t care about the environment. Au contraire. Some of the most depressing environments that I’ve seen are giant agricultural fields (e.g. driving through Iowa).

Compare it to what they looked like before:

Read more …

“..children who frequently use mobile devices are more likely to process stimuli on a “local” level, for example they “process the details” of an image first rather than the overall image itself.”

Mobile Devices Alter Children’s Minds, Change How They Perceive The World (JTN)

Researchers in Hungary this week announced the findings of studies into what effects digital devices have on young minds, concluding that the increased usage of such technology has changed how younger individuals interact with the world around them. In a press release, scientists at Eötvös Loránd University said that children of the “Alpha Generation,” or those born after 2010, “typically grow up with mobile devices in their hands” which “seems to change how they perceive the world.” Summarizing their findings, the Hungarian researchers claim that children who frequently use mobile devices are more likely to process stimuli on a “local” level, for example they “process the details” of an image first rather than the overall image itself.

The results “show that the type of experiences children meet matters much,” the release said, “because at this age the brain is very plastic, so such massive early exposure may have a significant long-term effect.” “The atypical attentional style in mobile user children is not necessarily bad,” one of the scholars commented, “but different for sure, and we cannot ignore this – for example in pedagogy.

Read more …



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Home Forums Debt Rattle March 7 2021

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  • #70721

    Vincent van Gogh Red Vineyards at Arles 1888   • American Rescue Plan Could Set Stage for $4 Trillion of Debt (CRFB) • Yellen Coddles Up to Powel
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle March 7 2021]

    V. Arnold

    Vincent van Gogh Red Vineyards at Arles 1888

    Paradise, no?

    Polder Dweller

    Another common medication to help in the fight against Covid. This one is apparently endorsed by big pharma in the form of AstraZeneca, presumably because they can make money from it.


    Dr. D

    “In a defining move of his Presidency.”

    WaPo either has very, very low standards for the next 900 days, or a great sense of irony. Screwing the base for no discernible reason while they watch and are aware could indeed be a defining act for him and the party.

    “Showers the people”? Yeah, at $300/year I feel showered on alright. We have a term for that shower in America, and it starts with “gold.”

    “The American Rescue Plan Act is estimated to cost over $1.9 trillion through 2031, but the ultimate price tag could be twice as high”

    Failing or filling irony, this one seems to believe in positive bailouts while believing in the negative of paying for it. You know how they make fun of the GOP over the impossibility of “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps”? This is the Democratic version: that everyone can live at the expense of everybody else. Everybody, is going to pay everybody else’s taxes. But you make it up on the volume. Once I can’t math that high, the math just goes away.

    But: price. Hasn’t the Fed handed out $200B/mo since 2008 in just one program? That would be $2.4T we didn’t even discuss and we probably have five of these programs. Common knowledge of everyone says they just HAVE to hand the most money to the most richest, least useful group.

    “they’re a sign that the economy is getting back on track,”

    They very well might be. But that won’t change tripling the interest rates on $70T in America alone. And rates are what? Going to go to negative 20%? No. So what happens if rates aren’t local noise but start a cyclical reversal to somewhere higher, even a normal 5 – 8%? Yeah, the whole world explodes. Why?

    Well, bonds are safer (not true) and are essentially required by law (not smart). So funds would be thrilled to get out of stocks and balance their portfolio risk into bonds. Sooooo, stocks fall? Right. Okay, but again, not just locally. If stocks start falling people aren’t going to just sit around. They’re going to sell stocks and get cash. But they can’t just sit on dead cash, they buy bonds to clip a little interest. Bonds go up AGAIN. So rates rise AGAIN. So stocks are sold AGAIN. In an unstoppable feedback loop all the way to the moon. Da moon?

    Yes, in the 1970s, although you don’t see it on the charts, real purchasing power of the Dow fell 90%, wWhich is the standard average for bear markets. US Treasury Bonds rose to 20% to keep people from fleeing the utter disaster that was the U.S. system. And top gold trader Jim Sinclair, son of a top trader on par with Jesse Livermore, made from $40 to $880 on gold, 10x leverage, compounded, threw in the towel on the gold run, saying “It’s over, boys, 20% rates will suck money off the moon.” And so they did. Many people locked in a 20% US$ coupon and lived off the interest for 20 years.

    Next problem, so you should run to bonds, obviously. Duh. Stocks are falling. FALSE! Okay, so today you got ahead of the game you smart guy, sold out of Tesla at $100,000/ share or whatever it shouldn’t be today, bought a rising bond at 3%, and are sitting pretty. Except…

    Today your bond is 3% and worth, let’s say 90c, prorated to expiration in the future. So what if all the other bands around yours slowly begin to pay 6%? Why would anyone want your crappy, low-paying trash? And face-value of your bond crashes to 60c, because only a fool would buy a bond at 3% when they could get 6%. But THAT’S TRUE UNTIL THE CYCLE ENDS, at 20%, 50%, 100%, 100,000% wherever it is. No one can buys bonds of any type at the same time they can’t buy Stocks of any type. They’re “Certificates of Confiscation”, as they called them in the ‘70s. A guaranteed dead loss.

    So where do BOTH the stock market AND the bond market flee for safety? Historically, the Commodities market, which includes gold. So now we have the worst of all possible worlds: your STOCKS are tanking, your BONDS are tanking, and your costs are rising fast. And when that happens, the economy craters and comes unhinged. No one has money, you can’t get loans. That’s the “Misery Index” from the ‘70s, Inflation + Unemployment. The only good thing is that commodity markets are 1/3 the length of stock and bond markets, and are over in ~10 years. The other great thing is that they transfer all national wealth to speculators and insiders, so only the rich get rich. The poor fall to a desperate, sub-Stone Age state. Which is why oligarchs run inflations in Argentina, Venezuela, etc. as much as possible, perpetually in fact.

    Hey, wasn’t Mr. Gates just buying some of that farmland that makes those imminent rising prices? And establishing UBI (so you don’t go hang him), while introducing shortages, rationing, and price controls last year? But that is a coincidence, and not suspicious at all. I’d rather hang him for several levels of mass murder (plus the world’s worst operating system) but that needs to be adjudicated in a court of law.

    So food rises, oil might even rise, economy crashes. These inflations are NOT from health and speed nearly ever. They are always in the worst, most ruined, and unfree, central controlled economies, like Zimbabwe. But all the money printed, all the money “made” in stocks and bonds is now trying to get on the 5 lifeboats of the Titanic: Silver, gold, real estate, oil, inventory, and Bitcoin.

    So it doesn’t matter Mrs Yellen, if it’s the wondr’us success of the vaccine Biden invented. If rates rise, it ends. Worldwide. We have an Economic Reset. Maybe you’ve heard that phrase before. So they’re going to hand that reset to serial failures and fraudsters like McKinsey. Technocrats: killing all life on earth since 1930. So clearly the answer is to give them more power and ourselves less.

    “US Covid Cases Continue to Decline after Brief Plateau (JTN)”

    Because Vitamin D, so seasonal, peaking the day of winter +2 week lag. Because PCR now down to 30. Because lockdowns end so people go out.

    “Connecticut Lifting All Covid-19 Capacity Restrictions On Businesses (F.)”

    Didn’t get to see a Congressman cry, but did get to see Fauci (nearly) cry, which is almost as good. “Mr. Governor, DO NOT tear down this wall!!!” When nothing has happened, and he changes his mind hourly. I mean, I literally do not know what the rules are, actual, practiced, or theoretical. No one can keep up. But luckily it makes no different since none of them are based on science. The virus sleeps after 10pm, and only happens in restaurant doorways, not at tables. And only for peasants, in coach, never for Lords in 1st class. That’s just common sense. Which Fauci several times this month said we are using instead of science.

    “customers’ Microsoft Exchange servers.”

    Well there’s your first problem. Gates never saw a virus he didn’t like. 5-to-1 it’s Microsoft themselves or the U.S. services using their own built-in back doors instead. Does no one read Snowden? It’s not rocket science. It’s very very easy. 1) open document 2) read words. Alphabet = lies. 4A = violated. Now reclaim your humanity and go do something about it. Oh, also it would be more likely for CIA to do this simply to CAUSE a war (tensions) with China than vice-versa.

    “Bitcoin Could Soon Run Head First Into US Money Laundering Laws (ZH)”

    Top and almost only money laundering medium worldwide is the US$. Yellen’s got a lot of ‘splainin’ to do. But in any case, they’ll never outlaw it. How will Senators make briefcase payoffs and buy gay prostitutes? They’re not going to outlaw themselves, you know. There’ll be something and it won’t be Tide Pods.

    “ The Dark Side Of “Eating Lower On The Food Chain” (Turchin)”

    Yes, cancel meat is a health-destroying scam. It’s yet more complicated. It may not be the “thing”, but that veg oils are GMO, soy has estrogen and hormone as well as other bad elements, rapeseed oils (and non-virgin oil) are poison-processed in a chemical factory, wheat is sprayed with glyphosate a day before eating, wheat is bred into an unnatural protein gene for appetite stimulant and gluten intolerance, peanuts are stored in elevators with trace fungus toxins, and so on. You COULD, most probably eat any of these in their non-deadly state. Paleo just happens to go around the majors. They will add a new deadly poison, in lab meat or something, and the fad diet cycle starts all over again.

    Denninger has a stellar post on his night and day reversal from eliminating most carbs. They are causing “inflammation” which obesity is one response. I believe it from my experience, but haven’t knuckled down to do the uncomfortable myself. Maybe this week.

    As I wrote in Cows and Acres and elsewhere, everyone loves cows, animals, and they are far more adaptable, out of the factory concentration camp methods, if they are done small scale, the way we know they should. If we don’t, they will all go extinct, which is the plan from the Schmarty-pants technocrats. But our dependence and interaction with other living things and environment is very complex and not one-dimensional, which is why the mentally-ill like them cannot understand it.


    The Wokesters are Jacobins

    Let’s cancel the Wokesters

    They deserve the same fate, round them up and stuff them all in an industrial wood chipper, the new Le Rasoir National. They can then at least serve some trivial purpose in life as mulch for the ornamentals.

    Le Rasoir national


    @ Dr D

    “You know how they make fun of the GOP over the impossibility of “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps”? This is the Democratic version: that everyone can live at the expense of everybody else. Everybody, is going to pay everybody else’s taxes. But you make it up on the volume.”

    As someone who trained in engineering and physics, this is called a ‘Perpetual Motion Machine’, the Holy Grail of the basic ‘science challenged’ pronoun.

    “Follow the Science!”

    Over the Edge

    John Keely’s Perpetual Motion Machine

     - Business Insider


    How John Keely Screwed Investors And Tricked The World With His Perpetual Motion Machine

    “A machine that almost revolutionized the world and could have provided cheap, efficient energy to mankind for centuries to come! Then John Keely had the machine for you. Once perfected, the “hydro-pneumatic pulsating vacuo-motor engine” would have been used by every person in the world…”


    • The Nightingale Alternative (Gillian Dymond)
    covid passports for the jet setters
    Why anybody else?

    Essential workers, politicians, enablers, lawyers, accountants are busy working for the elites and never stopped travelling.
    The old, and obese are locked up in care home and cannot afford to buy the travel insurance.
    Everyone who can afford to travel on a plane has herd immunity, or has been vaccinated, or already had covid.
    Of course mentally challenge people with more money than brain will pay through the nose to get a test before getting on a plane.
    Therefore, Why do people need covid passports?

    madamski cafone

    Electronic media ia altering the minds of everyone who comes into significant contact with it. Our dog, our cat, and our parrot have all learned to watch the magic screen. We are a tiger that has caught itself by its own tail.

    On the other side of this darkening century, people will learn how to tell stories and sing together (without a karaoke machine!) again. A new Fall from Eden mythos will emerge. Life will be demanding for my great-great-grandchildren but much more meaningful and satisfying than this vapid brain batik that is modern human culture.

    I envy them. I do not envy my grandchildren, torn between a childhood of video games while commuting between divorced parents, and a life of hard-scrabble do-it-yourself and be-sure-it’s-dead-before-picking-it-up.


    I hear a lot of talk about some glorified cold called covid or something. People are freaking out about it. Well, I guess it’s good practice for when the REAL freaking out begins.


    Paleo? Vegan? Both are better than starvation. Guess what? I can but certified non-GMO cigarettes. Didn’t have those when I was a young dumb smoker. Healthy carcinogens!


    How many soldiers can a farmer feed?
    How many starving immigrant?

    2020–2021 Indian farmers’ protest
    2020 Indian farmers’ protest – sitting protest.jpg
    Date 9 August 2020[1] – present
    (6 months, 3 weeks and 3 days)
    Location India
    Caused by
    Passing of three Farm Bills by Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha
    Revocation of all the three Farm Bills
    Legally ensure minimum support price
    (see section Demands for more details)
    Casualties and losses
    Over 300 policemen injured during Farmers’ Republic day parade (including cases of stabbings)[2][3][4]
    248 dead (as of 5 March 2021), hundreds injured
    (see section Fatalities for more details)
    Infrastructure damage:
    National highways dug up by police to stop protestors from marching to capital[5]
    Over 1,500 telecom tower sites damaged by protestors (as of 28 Dec)[6][7]
    Government buses and 30 police vehicles damaged on Republic Day[8]


    I don’t see rising interest rates. What I see is a very common reversion to the mean. Interest rates are super low. The current 1.5% for the ten year hasn’t been seen for decades. Besides, I don’t expect rates to remain this high for long. Now if the ten year yield went to 4% and appeared to be headed higher, then we could start talking about rising rates. Wolf Richter is right to refer to Wall Street crybabies.

    Cancel culture: Public discussion usually focuses on the trivial to distract from the serious:

    500,000 dead, 2.3 million incarcerated, 750,000 homeless, more than 10 million without work, record income inequality, rising sea levels, millions without power or water for more than a week and it’s….“cancel culture” that’s destroying America. If that’s what Bill Maher considers American normal, perhaps it deserves to be destroyed.” Jeffrey St. Clair, Counterpunch.

    madamski cafone

    Bomb Bomb Iran

    If there is a global elitist plan to place the world under One Rule, the USA military isn’t in on it. They KNOW Putin can wipe us out in a nuclear exchange while minimizing its losses. They know that Iran can knock that bomber out of the sky if so inclined. No prob.

    I agree with Bismark: “God has a special providence for fools, drunkards, and the United States of America.”― Otto von Bismarck

    Methinks that God is tired of covering the USA’s tushie. Methinks we’ve become too stupid and destructive to even plead the insanity defense. We are, I suspect, what God might call “hopeless”.

    I miss Trump. He wasn’t a drunkard but he was at least a fool. Now we have wall-to-wall arrogant dipshits running our affairs. It was nice to at least have a fool in alleged charge for awhile.

    I wonder if the other players, Putin, Xi, et al, are working on a major color revolution in the States. One that puts Trump in charge on an extra-constitutional basis. Sounds crazy, but Putin/Xi don’t want us collapsing too harshly because the debris might bury them too. It seems to me highly unlikely we’ll have another successful presidential election.

    So I’d like it if someone would put someone actually in charge so we have someone to fight other than each other.

    “Here I come to save the day!”

    Deus ex Machina

    madamski cafone


    Dave Note

    can’t post

    how broken is this???


    Farmers in India -doing what we all should be doing. Interesting doc on women’s suffrage in the U.S. — those women took actions in the streets not different from what our street protesters do today. Men spit on the demonstrators. Nothing changes by writing nice letters to politicians.
    Paleo and all that jazz – not taking into account methods of animal treatment and treatment of the earth (ie feeding these meat animals “conventionally” is missing a key point. Conventionally-raised beef comes from cows fed GMO corn in massive filthy, inhumane feedlots. That GMO corn renders the meat a heath hazard for converting healthy animal fat into omega 6 unhealthy fat.
    In Canada, dairy cows are being fed palm oil to improve the texture of butter-yes you read that correctly.
    Conventionally-raised chickens (during their incredibly short lives of about 8 weeks before slaughter) are fed GMO, glyphosate-coated grains, you know, those grains you would not want to eat.
    There’s much more to eating healthy than simply switching from conventional grains to conventional meat.

    Dave Note

    Bonds are in a 240 year high in the US and 300+ years in England.

    That’s a very long time for any financial trend to hold.

    Nature Always balance out the ledger however.

    Bonds are the Foundation Layer of the world economy.

    Far more essential than stocks, equities or commodities

    When the Bonds burst, it really will be

    The End of Days

    Dave Note

    This word press seems to fail posting when I included both a link and the same image address as an inline image. Sound like a software bug in WordPress, I’m shocked speechless


    The only global trial of potential COVID-19 treatments is languishing. The World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) Solidarity trial, set up last year to quickly test potential COVID-19 therapies with tens of thousands of patients, produced headlines in October 2020 when it showed that four candidate treatments offer little benefit. But since then, it hasn’t launched any new tests. On 27 January, John-Arne Røttingen, who works at Norway’s foreign ministry and chairs the trial’s executive group, pulled the plug on the study’s only remaining arm, which tested the antiviral remdesivir. “The Solidarity trial is now on pause,” he says.

    Science 05 Mar 2021:
    Vol. 371, Issue 6533, pp. 972-973
    DOI: 10.1126/science.371.6533.972


    Dave Note

    The national government can run deficits with little consequence as long as the bond market allows them to refinance the debt at a slightly lower interest rate.

    Having effectively hit zero rates, and now on the event horizon of negative interest rates, something that shouldn’t exist in any sane dimension, the bond market is being squeezed to raise rates not just back to ‘normal’ 5-8% range, but my guess is to ‘Tall Paul Volcker” levels (20%+)

    This will really put the Kibosh on Bedpan Biden’s hopes and dreams of Building Back Better

    Dave Note

    Kevin Gosztola: Jobless benefits were $600/week for 4 months in the COVID-19 relief that passed under Trump in March 2020. Biden and Senate Democrats are cutting jobless benefits for citizens in crisis to $300/week for same period—half of what passed in GOP-controlled Senate.

    Bedpan Biden and his ‘bait & switch’ with unemployment bennies to his Base, how sweet!

    And controlling both halves of Congress, impressive!

    Build Back Better Bedpans!

    The Democratic tagline should be pink hats with MAMA stitched on them:

    Make America Mediocre Again


    All politicians talk about how they will achieve lalaland.
    Pick your favorite – Biden, Putin, and Xi

    (Putin, and Xi, are too busy taking care of running their own countries and are not paying attention to the fooling antics of the USA.)
    Xi Jinping urges eradication of poverty in China by year-end despite COVID-19
    Updated 23:15, 06-Mar-2020

    Xi, is on another 5 year plan
    Chinese President Xi Jinping on Sunday called for efforts to advance high-quality development and improve people’s well-being throughout the country during the ongoing legislative session.

    President Xi made the remarks when taking part in a group deliberation with lawmakers from northwest China’s Qinghai Province at the fourth session of the 13th National People’s Congress, China’s top legislature.

    High-quality development is the theme of China’s economic and social development in the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025) and beyond, he said. Different regions should find paths of high-quality development suited to their conditions and take concrete actions to improve people’s livelihood, he added.

    Xi said Qinghai should prioritize ecological protection, promote high-quality development and create high-quality life for the people, calling on the province to make new achievements in protecting the ecology in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and advancing sustainable development.

    Michael Reid


    I fully agree with your comment

    madamski cafone

    If only we could make America even medoicre.

    @ Michael Reid

    Full agreement scares me. 😉


    btw, the North American plains weren’t covered with buffalo when we first arrived. It took the removal of most of the Indians, and the various agri/horti-cultures they practiced, to do that. Those plains covered with bison were a massive population bloom created by a rapidly and majorly altered ecology. One can read about such things here:

    1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus

    “There was extensive disruption of societies and loss of environmental control as a result. Decreased environmental influence and resource competition would have led to population explosions in species such as the American bison and the passenger pigeon. Because fire clearing had ceased, forests would have expanded and become denser.”

    We don’t know what the Good Old Days were like. We usually destroy most of the evidence one way or another and then tell ourselves stories that fit our views.

    island raider

    Did Merck just re-invent Ivermectin (cheap, off patent & very effective in treating Covid) as Molnupiravir?

    Michael Reid


    Please don’t be afraid. Maybe I will drop by to say hello the next time I drive by get a Llewellins setter pup.

    Michael Reid


    I was referring to your first comment


    Bartender Yellen needs to keep filling up the punch bowl or the drunken sailors might notice the ship’s rats are abandoning the sinking ship! The rising water is a sure sign the economy is growing!

    So now the corrupt RINOs controlling the Republican party are going to have trouble raising money without Trump! Serves them right for putting their corrupt interests above the people’s best interests. There are going to be some very upset billionaires too! This is a good thing!

    So Indians lived in harmony with the environment! Who would have known they were avid arsonists! Cleared forests after all provided more grass fed deer! Too bad about all those other crispy fried critters losing their homes! Deer burgers tasted better! Imagine what the Indians could have done to their environment if they had only invented the wheel!



    The problem for us practicing engineering is, more often than not, we keep running into Dr. Murphy!

    V. Arnold

    Mr. Roboto, yesterday;
    Fear is the New Smart
    That NYT hit-piece on Ivermectin was disturbing, because what it told me was that the globalist powers that be don’t really care about helping all those people who are sick and dying. They care about whatever other agenda they have that doesn’t have helping all those people who are sick and dying as one of its priorities. I guess I really shouldn’t be surprised, but I’m still quite disgusted. We do have an awful lot of poor people with health problems in the USA. Maybe somebody wants there to be less of them around. I’m no fan of conspiracy theories, but it’s starting to become difficult to arrive at any other conclusion, at this point.

    I don’t disagree, however, it’s complicated by a number of factors, education (or its lack) being of paramount importance, IMO.
    The public education system in the U.S. is irreparably broken. The poor are sentenced to ignorance by a malfuntioning educational system.
    I’m not victim blamming here; just attempting to point out broken links in a chain resulting in major failures in a defective system.
    Blaming will not, cannot accomplish anything positive: action of the correct type is the only solution.
    Unfortunately there is no will to act by those in leadership roles; only Pablum, doled out as $1200 spoonfuls, that only give a moments respite in a tsunami of indifference…

    Dr D Rich

    Tucker Carlson censored by YouTube.

    Watch “Tucker Carlson Tonight 3/5/2021 FULL | FOX BREAKING TRUMP NEWS March 6 ,2021” on YouTube

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