Jan 132022

Mattia Preti The Adoration of the Shepherds 1660-99


The Pandemic Will Probably Be Over In March (K.)
UK ‘Closest of Any Country’ to Exiting COVID-19 Pandemic (ET)
Covid Is Now Killing Half As Many People Per Day As A Bad Flu Year (DM)
COVID Deaths Jump 40% As US Continues To See More Than 1 Million Cases A Day
CDC-Backed Study Shows Differences Between Delta And Omicron (RT)
Ministry of Health, It’s Time To Admit Failure (Prof. Ehud Qimron )
Israel Is A Trailer Now In Many Ways (Gal.G.)
Danish Newspaper Apologizes For Not Questioning Official COVID Narratives (ZH)
WHO Says Vaccine Mandates Should Be ‘Last Resort’ (SMH)
SARS-COV-2 Vaccines and Neurodegenerative Disease (Seneff)
NY Times Finally Acknowledges ‘Original Antigenic Sin’ (Hammond)
Ronald McDonald House To Evict Families With Unvaccinated Young Children (PM)
Quebec Judge Removes Unvaccinated Father’s Right To Visit Child (WT)
I…TOLD…. YOU…. SO! (Denninger)
Lawsuit Aiming To Break Up Facebook Group Meta Can Go Ahead – US Court (G.)



World CFR is at its lowest since the beginning of the pandemic, and decreasing.








Glenn Beck Great Reset



Malone Bannon






In Greece.

The Pandemic Will Probably Be Over In March (K.)

Dr Christopher Murray is considered internationally as the “guru” of projections on the course of the Covid-19 pandemic. He is the director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington and has developed models on the evolution of the pandemic for various countries in the world – including Greece. Dr Murray predicts that about half of the Greek population will be infected with the Omicron variant and believes the peak of the wave will come in mid-January, not at the end, as projected by initial studies. He also believes that the end of the pandemic will come in March, as soon as Omicron is completely gone, and recommends reopening schools as long as there are enough teachers. But his main conclusion is the need to stop dramatizing the pandemic, saying that it does not make sense to focus on the number of cases. He argues that the key figures are the number of hospital admissions, especially to intensive care units.

What is your prognosis as to how long the pandemic will last? Well, as far as we can understand from Omicron, we think that it’s so transmissible it will move through the population in Greece and in each country that it shows up in in a pretty short period from introduction to peak in four to six weeks. So most of the Omicron wave should happen in the month of January in Greece. What percentage of the population do you expect to get infected with this variant? Well, we expect that probably as much as half of the population or more will get infected with Omicron, and that’s despite vaccination levels and past infection with other variants of Covid. So a very large fraction of both Greece but also the world should get Omicron.

So is there any sense in trying to control Omicron, really? Well, what do we know about Omicron? We know that it’s very transmissible; it can infect people that have been previously infected; in terms of infection, it can break through in those that are vaccinated or even those that have had a booster. But it is much less severe than past variances, maybe 90% or 95% less severe. So huge numbers are coming, but much less severe. There still will be pressure on the health system, because of the very big number of infections and a smaller fraction going to hospital. So it’s really going to be hard to control infection. But there still will be some consequences on the population.

Do you expect hospitalizations to go up? We expect hospitalizations to go up, but nothing like past waves, and from what we’ve seen in South Africa now in the United Kingdom and in some of the earlier states in the US, even amongst those that end up in hospital, it’s also 80% to 90% less severe, so many fewer are ending up in the ICU, even amongst those that go to hospital. So all encouraging signs about severity, but just the sheer numbers – half of the population – getting Omicron means that we will see an increase in hospitalizations.

Have you observed any kind of strange effects from Omicron – things you didn’t expect? I think when it first emerged in November – and we had no real data about severity – there was tremendous concern that we would see this nightmare of mass transmission, and then slightly less severe than Delta, and hospitals would be overwhelmed as the death rate would soar. That hasn’t happened fortunately. It’s turned out to be much less severe and today we’re not really seeing anything particularly unusual except this fact that 80% to 90% of people who get infected have no symptoms at all. So that makes a really big difference in terms of impact on the population.

Is this in a way the beginning of the end of the pandemic, because everybody has been saying that at some point it will become like a flu. A severe flu perhaps, but a flu. Are we reaching that point now with Omicron? You know it’s a great question and I think very hard to answer in a strictly scientific way. But many people do think that, because there’ll be so many people infected with Omicron, it’ll give a big boost to the immunity level of populations that it will take a new variant to emerge before we see after the Omicron wave more transmission. So it may be the thing that brings us to the point where we go to an endemic stage, where Covid doesn’t go away, but we should see it may become that seasonal disease that we’ve been expecting for quite some time.

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Endemic or pandemic?

UK ‘Closest of Any Country’ to Exiting COVID-19 Pandemic (ET)

The UK is the closest of any country in the northern hemisphere to exiting the COVID-19 pandemic and seeing it become endemic, an expert has said. Professor David Heymann, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), said the UK is probably one of the countries with the highest levels of population immunity. Talking at a Chatham House online briefing on Tuesday, Heymann said that countries in the northern hemisphere have “varying stages of the pandemic,” and the UK is probably “the closest to any country of being out of the pandemic if it isn’t already out of the pandemic and having the disease as endemic.” He said population immunity is already high and “seems to be keeping the virus and its variants at bay, not causing serious illness or death.”

Heymann cited the Office for National Statistics as saying that about 95 percent of the population in England and a little less in other parts of the UK already have antibodies either from vaccination or from natural infection. The CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, which caused the COVID-19 pandemic, is now “functioning more like an endemic coronavirus than one that is a pandemic,” he said. The leading expert said there would be resurgences of COVID-19 in the future and more variants will arise, though it was not clear of what severity. “We’re fortunate in that we have vaccines which can be modified very rapidly, and put into production very rapidly to deal with an escapee,” he said.

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We need a flu passport.

Covid Is Now Killing Half As Many People Per Day As A Bad Flu Year (DM)

Daily Covid deaths are currently running at less than half the rate expected in a bad flu year, MailOnline analysis suggests as experts claim the UK is finally on the brink of beating the pandemic. There are growing calls for No10 to learn to live with Covid rather than focus on halting the spread of the virus now there is such a big disconnect between infections and deaths. Right now just 130 people are dying from the coronavirus every day in England at what is believed to be the peak of the Omicron outbreak, compared to 1,300 last January before vaccines were widely available. Daily deaths have barely moved since the start of autumn, despite infection rates more than quadrupling over the same time following the emergence of the ultra-transmissible variant.

For comparison, Government estimates show there were more than 400 influenza deaths per day at the peak of the last bad flu season in 2017/18, and almost 300 daily fatalities the previous year. Just like this winter, hospitals were forced to cancel routine operations and patients were told to steer clear of A&E units during both of those outbreaks. Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease expert from the University of East Anglia, said the figures showed that the burden of Covid is now comparable to flu. He told MailOnline Covid would ‘almost certainly’ get weaker every year as people develop natural immunity and eventually become a common cold that kills only the very vulnerable further down the line. ‘Once we’re past this Omicron peak — excluding another unexpected variant that reverses all of our progress — then we’ll be close to the point of endemic,’ Professor Hunter added.

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Different from UK. Still, none of them are Omicron.

COVID Deaths Jump 40% As US Continues To See More Than 1 Million Cases A Day

Deaths involving patients with COVID increased by 40% over the past week, according to the CDC. But as it happens, almost all of the deaths reported involve patients infected with delta, not the omicron variant which is now responsible for nearly all COVID cases. On average, the US reported about 1,600 cases a day last week, up from about 1,150 the week before, said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. The US has continued to report more than 1 million cases a day, according to Johns Hopkins, with a record-breaking 1.35 million reported yesterday alone. Walensky, who spoke during a White House COVID Response Team briefing, said she believes these deaths are just “left over” fatalities from the delta wave – nothing to worry about.

Of course, there’s no way the CDC can truly know this for certain. The government’s COVID policies are mostly just grasping at straws. Though they would never admit that. So, why is it so hard to believe that delta alone is accounting for these deaths? Well, for one, the government believes the omicron variant accounts for 98.3% of all new cases. Public health officials will monitor “deaths over the next several weeks to see the impact of omicron on mortality,” Walenksy said during the briefing. “Given the sheer number of cases, we may see deaths from omicron, but I suspect the deaths we’re seeing now are still from delta.” Of course, while Walensky delivered the news with her characteristic alarmism, we feel it’s important to take a beat and put it all in context. See the chart. Deaths are nowhere near the highs from last winter.

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“..91% less risk of death, with zero patients requiring ventilators..”

CDC-Backed Study Shows Differences Between Delta And Omicron (RT)

While a study out of southern California shows the Omicron variant of the coronavirus is much milder than the Delta, US health authorities continue to insist on vaccination, boosters and masking due to “strained” hospitals. CDC director Rochelle Walensky shared on Wednesday the results of the latest study backed by the agency, showing the disparity between the two variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. A team of scientists from the University of California, Berkeley, healthcare provider Kaiser Permanente and the CDC analyzed data from almost 70,000 people in southern California and plugged it into their models. The pre-print results of their study were published on MedRXiv on Tuesday. Walensky tweeted that the study showed Omicron represented 53% less risk of symptomatic hospitalization, 74% less risk of intensive care admission, and 91% less risk of death, with zero patients requiring ventilators.

This is based on the study that analyzed 52,297 people who tested positive for Omicron and 16,982 with Delta between November 30, 2021 and January 1, 2022. Of those, 235 (0.5%) were hospitalized with Omicron and 222 (1.3%) with Delta infections. During a period of both variants circulating, presumed Omicron infections “were associated with substantially reduced risk of severe clinical endpoints and shorter durations of hospital stay,” according to the study. Walensky wasn’t quite taking a victory lap, however, warning in a follow-up tweet that Omicron may be less severe, but is “much more transmissible.” “We are seeing the unprecedented impact,” the CDC director said, pointing to over a million positive tests in a single day and “99% of counties with high transmission [and] strained healthcare systems.” “Protect against Covid-19: get vaccinated + boosted, wear a mask & stay home if sick,” she added.

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“You insisted on attributing every decline of a wave solely to your actions, and so through false propaganda “you overcame the plague.”

Ministry of Health, It’s Time To Admit Failure (Prof. Ehud Qimron )

Udi Qimron, head of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Tel Aviv University and a leading Israeli immunologist, has taken the opportunity posed by the collapsing narrative to release this open letter to the authorities (this is a mechanical translation from the original Hebrew):

Ministry of Health, it’s time to admit failure

In the end, the truth will always be revealed, and the truth about the coronavirus policy is beginning to be revealed. When the destructive concepts collapse one by one, there is nothing left but to tell the experts who led the management of the pandemic – we told you so. Two years late, you finally realize that a respiratory virus cannot be defeated and that any such attempt is doomed to fail. You do not admit it, because you have admitted almost no mistake in the last two years, but in retrospect it is clear that you have failed miserably in almost all of your actions, and even the media is already having a hard time covering your shame. You refused to admit that the infection comes in waves that fade by themselves, despite years of observations and scientific knowledge.

You insisted on attributing every decline of a wave solely to your actions, and so through false propaganda “you overcame the plague.” And again you defeated it, and again and again and again. You refused to admit that mass testing is ineffective, despite your own contingency plans explicitly stating so (“Pandemic Influenza Health System Preparedness Plan, 2007,” p. 26). You refused to admit that recovery is more protective than a vaccine, despite previous knowledge and observations showing that non-recovered vaccinated people are more likely to be infected than recovered people. You refused to admit that the vaccinated are contagious despite the observations. Based on this, you hoped to achieve herd immunity by vaccination — and you failed in that as well.

You insisted on ignoring the fact that the disease is dozens of times more dangerous for risk groups and older adults, than for young people who are not in risk groups, despite the knowledge that came from China as early as 2020. You refused to adopt the “Great Barrington Declaration,” signed by more than 60,000 scientists and medical professionals, or other common-sense programs. You chose to ridicule, slander, distort and discredit them. Instead of the right programs and people, you have chosen professionals who lack relevant training for pandemic management (physicists as chief government advisers, veterinarians, security officers, media personnel, and so on).

You have not set up an effective system for reporting side effects from the vaccines and reports on side effects have even been deleted from your Facebook page. Doctors avoid linking side effects to the vaccine, lest you persecute them as you did to some of their colleagues. You have ignored many reports of changes in menstrual intensity and menstrual cycle times. You hid data that allows for objective and proper research (for example, you removed the data on passengers at Ben Gurion Airport). Instead, you chose to publish non-objective articles together with senior Pfizer executives on the effectiveness and safety of vaccines.

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Twitter thread. More at the link.

Israel Is A Trailer Now In Many Ways (Gal.G.)

Hi followers from around the world, I feel that we need to take a moment and explain to you what is happening in #Israel today. Everything is so fast & crazy, but as we’ve said many times, Israel is a trailer now in many ways, and if you want time to prepare – read carefully. There is complete chaos in Israel today. The Omicron did not scare parents enough to vaccinate the 5-plus-year-olds, nor did the vaccine teams that came to the schools do the job. So the madness goes up a gear. You are all probably familiar with Macron’s bullying speech. This speech was a whistle calling on all fascists in the public sphere to wake up and call together for our government – “Be Macron” and to embitter the lives of the unvaccinated.

Opinion columns were published one after another – calling for distancing, excluding, marking, degrading, complicating and also imprisoning away from society “the unvaccinated”. And this was just the ground of incitement on which everything rests, the preparation of society. Voices began to address covid in a military-security language, school safety authorities (supposed to protect children from enemy harm) were directed to address dialogue with *parents*, and principals asked parents to treat the school as a closed military area (from them) For a few days there seemed to be HOPE, more people “woke up” to realize that the demand for a 4th booster didn’t make sense, In MSM & medical consensus suddenly they questioned the policy and necessity of the Green Pass, raise possibility that the omicron would naturally V us

Suddenly, overnight, there was again a sharp change in language in public discourse – MSM began to treat any criticism of COVID policy and/or opposition to the vaccine as *national security* offenses in Israel punishable by death or life imprisonment. It is unprecedented and very staggering. It also affects the scope of the critical voices. Then – the regulations and rules and the press releases – did not stop changing. For a moment, malls closed for unvaxxed, a moment later they opened, only to close again in another way. The same goes for education, health services, state borders and more. Most of the public service’s offices – are opened only with Green Pass. The courts are silent and supporting this policy. * As a lawyer- I lost all remaining trust in the legal system that I was a part of for many years and full heartedly believed in despite criticism.

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The first?! Still took two years though.

Danish Newspaper Apologizes For Not Questioning Official COVID Narratives (ZH)

In August, Germany’s top newspaper, Bild, apologized for the outlet’s fear-driven Covid coverage – with special message to children, who were told “that they were going to murder their grandma.” Now, a newspaper in Denmark has publicly apologized for reporting government narratives surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic without questioning them. “We failed,” reads the article’s headline from tabloid Ekstra Bladet, which goes on to admit that “For ALMOST two years, we – the press and the population – have been almost hypnotically preoccupied with the authorities’ daily coronavirus figures. “(translated).

“WE HAVE STARED at the oscillations of the number pendulum when it came to infected, hospitalized and died with corona. And we have been given the significance of the pendulum’s smallest movements laid out by experts, politicians and authorities, who have constantly warned us about the dormant corona monster under our beds. A monster just waiting for us to fall asleep so it can strike in the gloom and darkness of the night.

THE CONSTANT mental alertness has worn out tremendously on all of us. That is why we – the press – must also take stock of our own efforts. And we have failed.

WE HAVE NOT been vigilant enough at the garden gate when the authorities were required to answer what it actually meant that people are hospitalized with corona and not because of corona. Because it makes a difference. A big difference. Exactly, the official hospitalization numbers have been shown to be 27 percent higher than the actual figure for how many there are in the hospital, simply because they have corona. We only know that now.

OF COURSE, it is first and foremost the authorities who are responsible for informing the population correctly, accurately and honestly. The figures for how many are sick and died of corona should, for obvious reasons, have been published long ago, so we got the clearest picture of the monster under the bed.

IN ALL, the messages of the authorities and politicians to the people in this historic crisis leave much to be desired. And therefore they lie as they have ridden when parts of the population lose confidence in them.

ANOTHER example: The vaccines are consistently referred to as our ‘superweapon’. And our hospitals are called ‘superhospitals’. Nevertheless, these super-hospitals are apparently maximally pressured, even though almost the entire population is armed with a super-weapon. Even children have been vaccinated on a huge scale, which has not been done in our neighboring countries.

IN OTHER WORDS, there is something here that does not deserve the term ‘super’. Whether it’s the vaccines, the hospitals, or a mixture of it all, is every man’s bid. But at least the authorities’ communication to the population in no way deserves the term ‘super’. On the contrary.”

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“..because not everyone in the world has the same access to vaccines.”

WHO Says Vaccine Mandates Should Be ‘Last Resort’ (SMH)

The WHO on Wednesday said vaccination status should not be used to disqualify people from travelling internationally and governments should only use vaccine mandates as a “last resort”. The comments came in response to questions from The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age about the ongoing row surrounding world’s No.1 men’s tennis player Novak Djokovic. Only vaccinated people are currently eligible to enter Australia after the country’s border reopened on a limited basis late last year. A few hotel quarantine spaces are maintained for the non-vaccinated and those given exemptions. Australia and other jurisdictions around the world have also introduced vaccine passports or apps to allow entry to major events, restaurants and other facilities. They are also now required for workers in some professions.

Djokovic, who has refused to be vaccinated, successfully sought entry to Australia based on claims that a December COVID-19 infection qualified him for an exemption. He was blocked by Australian Border Force officials, but the Federal Circuit Court overturned the cancellation of his visa. Federal Immigration Minister Alex Hawke is now considering whether to use his discretionary ministerial powers to deport the Serbian. The situation in effect means Australian Open spectators will have to be vaccinated to watch Djokovic, despite the player himself remaining unvaccinated. Dr Mike Ryan, executive director of WHO’s Health Emergencies Program, said vaccine mandates should be used with caution and only when a government facing a severe outbreak has failed to persuade its population to get jabbed.

“We see mandates as a last resort … in the face of a large epidemic,” he said. “So yes, there are circumstances in which vaccine mandates are supported by WHO but, again, it is subjected to the basic principle that the best way to get people vaccinated is to inform them, to educate, to have a dialogue and to address people’s genuine concerns. “We always ask that those mandates be clear, be explicit, be time-limited and at the same time … governments continue to explain to people why they’re doing things and continue to try and convince people of the benefits of vaccine rather than reverting to mandates as a single approach.” The director of WHO’s Department of Immunisation, Vaccines and Biologicals, Katherine O’Brien, added that no one should be denied access to international travel based on their vaccination status because not everyone in the world has the same access to vaccines.

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“Such unprecedented vaccines normally take twelve years to develop, with only a 2% success rate, but these vaccines were developed and brought to market in less than a year.”

SARS-COV-2 Vaccines and Neurodegenerative Disease (Seneff)

People don’t realize that these vaccines are vastly different from the many childhood vaccines we are now used to getting early in life. I find it shocking that the vaccine developers and the government officials across the globe are wrecklessly pushing these vaccines on an unsuspecting population. Together with Dr. Greg Nigh, I recently published a peer-reviewed paper on the technology behind the mRNA vaccines and the many potentially unknown consequences to health . Such unprecedented vaccines normally take twelve years to develop, with only a 2% success rate, but these vaccines were developed and brought to market in less than a year. As a consequence, we have no direct knowledge of any effects that the vaccines might have on our health over the long term.

However, knowledge about how these vaccines work, how the immune system works and how neurodegenerative diseases come about can be brought to bear on the problem in order to predict potential devastating future consequences of the vaccines. The mRNA in these vaccines codes for the spike protein normally synthesized by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. However, both the mRNA and the protein it produces have been changed from the original version in the virus with the intent to increase rate of production of the protein in an infected cell and the durability of both the mRNA and the spike protein it codes for. Additional ingredients like cationic lipids and polyethylene glycol are also toxic with unknown consequences. The vaccines were approved for emergency use based on grossly inadequate studies to evaluate safety and effectiveness.

Our paper showed that there are several mechanisms by which these vaccines could lead to severe disease, including autoimmune disease, neurodegenerative diseases, vascular disorders (hemorrhaging and blood clots) and possibly reproductive issues. There is also the risk that the vaccines will accelerate the emergence of new strains of the virus that are no longer sensitive to the antibodies produced by the vaccines. When people are immune compromised (e.g., taking chemotherapy for cancer), the antibodies they produce may not be able to keep the virus in check because the immune system is too impaired. Just as in the case of antibiotic resistance, new strains evolve within an infected immune-compromised person’s body that produce a version of the spike protein that no longer binds with the acquired antibodies.

These new strains quickly come to dominate over the original strain, especially when the general population is heavily vaccinated with a vaccine that is specific to the original strain. This problem is likely going to necessitate the repeated rollout of new versions of the vaccine at periodic intervals that people will have to receive to induce yet another round of antibody production in an endless game of cat and mouse. Like the mRNA vaccines, the DNA vaccines are based on novel biotech gene editing techniques that are brand new, so they too are a massive experiment unleashed on a huge unsuspecting population, with unknown consequences.

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“..original antigenic sin can occur either with infection or with vaccination. In the case of SARS-CoV-2, the evidence is that it does not occur with infection.”

NY Times Finally Acknowledges ‘Original Antigenic Sin’ (Hammond)

As the New York Times describes it, “original antigenic sin” is when “the immune system’s response is tailored to the first version of the virus, and its responses to subsequent variants are much less powerful.” The Omicron variant has many mutations in its spike protein, so “antibodies made for the original version of the virus struggle to recognize the latest version.” There are “clues” that original antigenic sin could be a real problem with COVID-19 vaccines, vaccinologist Amy Sherman told the Times. However, the way the Times describes original antigenic sin, it makes it sounds as though it refers simply to a mismatch between the antigen component of the vaccine and circulating strains of the virus. But the term does not simply mean that there is a mismatch. The Times makes it sound as though a mismatch were the definition of original antigenic sin, but that is wrong.

There can be a mismatch between the vaccine antigen and circulating variants without the occurrence of original antigenic sin. What “original antigenic sin” refers to is not just an antigenic mismatch but a phenomenon in which the original priming of the immune system prejudices any subsequent immune response due to reexposure to a different strain of the virus in way that results in suboptimal immunity as compared to the immune response that otherwise would have occurred had the host been immunologically naïve. In the absence of an original antigenic sin phenomena, circulating antibodies from vaccination might not protect against infection because of a mismatch between those antibodies and the circulating strain, but the immune system would nevertheless relearn from the infection and mount newly adapted immune responses that are optimized for the infecting strain of the virus.

Original antigenic sin is when the immune system produces ineffectual immune responses to the newly infecting variant because it is stuck in a mode of producing immune responses specific to the antigen from the initial immunologic priming. To reiterate specifically in the context of COVID-19 vaccines, if original antigenic sin occurs, it means not only that the immune responses from vaccination are a mismatch to a newly infecting variant, but also that the immune system fails to adequately adapt its responses to the new variant. It is stuck mounting responses to the spike protein of an extinct strain of the coronavirus, and so the immune response to any subsequent viral exposures will always be suboptimal.

Depending on the virus, original antigenic sin can occur either with infection or with vaccination. In the case of SARS-CoV-2, the evidence is that it does not occur with infection. Natural immunity is not only robust and durable, but also broad and adaptive. There is long-term immunological memory with evolution of antibody-producing cells to generate higher affinity antibodies with increased capability of neutralizing whatever variant. Even if, as with Omicron, a variant emerges that partially escapes the neutralizing capability of existing antibodies, it is likely that the immune system will update itself and start adapting to more effectively fight off the infecting strain.

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Didn’t get the memo that vaccines don’t stop infection or transmission.

Ronald McDonald House To Evict Families With Unvaccinated Young Children (PM)

The Ronald McDonald House in Vancouver British Columbia allegedly served an eviction notice on unvaccinated children with serious illness including cancer and their parents. Austin Furgason, from Kelowna, British Columbia, the father of a 4-year-old boy with leukemia who has been undergoing treatment since October, posted the video to Facebook showing a letter from Ronald McDonald House Charities – British Columbia & Yukon that made the announcement of the evictions. A GoFundMe has been set up to help the family with costs. He wrote, “All tenants, adults and children over the age of 5 who are not vaccinated are out by the end of January. How absolutely wicked and vile.” “They are evicting my son with leukemia and any other children or adults who are suffering with sick children into the snow.”

Furgason added, “The Covid cult is far more dangerous than Covid. If they will evict families with cancer, what won’t they do.” The letter in the video, which was provided to True North dated January 10, 2022, said that everyone five years and older unvaccinated against the coronavirus can no longer stay at the facilities. “Beginning January 17, 2022, everyone five years and older who are working, staying or visiting our facilities (both the House at 4567 Heather St. Vancouver and at the Family Room in Surrey Memorial Hospital) must show proof of full vaccination (two doses), in addition to completing our existing screening, unless an Accommodation has been sought and has been explicitly approved and granted by RMHC (Ronald McDonald House Charities) in writing.”

Families already in the facility have a grace period to get at least one dose of the vaccine which ends on January 31. Fergason told True North on Tuesday night, “My wife Lindsey was crying on the bed. I told her, I’m going to go ask the manager about this because this isn’t even real.” “I said, this couldn’t be real.”


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“Quebec has been a laboratory for COVID-19 restrictions and authoritarian measures.”

Quebec Judge Removes Unvaccinated Father’s Right To Visit Child (WT)

“[…] it would normally have been in the child’s best interest to have contact with his father, but not in his best interest to have contact with him if he is unvaccinated and opposed to health measures in the current epidemiological context”, judge Jean-Sébastien Vaillancourt wrote in his December 23rd opinion. The mother and father had a previously agreed-upon visitation schedule, but their agreement was taken in front of the courts after the father asked for one additional day with his 12-year old child during the holidays. The mother opposed the additional day and asked the court to revoke entirely the father’s visitation rights after learning that he had not received the COVID-19 vaccine. The mother added that he was a “conspiracy theorist”.

The mother and the judge used to father’s opposition against the current COVID-19 restrictions against him: “excerpts from Mr.’s Facebook page produced by Ms. reveal that he does indeed appear to be opposed to vaccines and health measures”, the judge wrote. The mother argued that she lived with her boyfriend and two other young children, therefore the father endangered them by not being vaccinated and risking bringing COVID into the household. Despite the ludicrous argument, the judge agreed in his decision: “Under these circumstances, it is not in the best interests of any of the three children for Mr. to be able to exercise access to [his 12-year-old] at this time.”

In Canada and around the world, the rights of unvaccinated individuals have been slowly degrading. In most Canadian provinces, unvaccinated individuals are not allowed in restaurants or public events. Recently, the Quebec government said it is considering requiring proof of vaccination at grocery stores and pharmacies that also offer at-home delivery. The Quebec government has also announced it would put a “significant” tax on the unvaccinated, possibly leading to criminal offenses and prison if unpaid. Quebec has been a laboratory for COVID-19 restrictions and authoritarian measures. This new judgment shows that the mentality has also infiltrated the court system.

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“The governments involved all knew before the shots were released that they were dangerous and would become worthless.”

I…TOLD…. YOU…. SO! (Denninger)

We knew the *******s would not work and were harmful. We didn’t think so, we knew so, and further we knew that someone who had been infected was at least in part protected from said harm by the mechanism infection uses. I pointed all this out without having what Veritas has now published merely by deduction. We knew in September of 2020 there was a risk issue with the spike in the circulation that was not in most cases present from natural infection and we knew by December of 2020 it was singularly dangerous. It is now confirmed that DARPA and THE GOVERNMENT knew this and proceeded to purchase and deploy the shots anyway.

We also knew that there were other fingers in the pie including American ones before *****-19 was announced to exist because the transfer agreement with a US University was known to exist more than a year ago and it was executed in 2019 before *****-19 was claimed to have “emerged” in China. How can you do something that requires a thing before the second thing happens? You can’t, ergo, the government and the private organizations knew damned well ***** existed before the agreement was signed.

So now have what I’ve maintained all along is in in official government-documented form: The virus was man-made. Ecohealth tried to get funding through DARPA and was told to go to Hell because it violated the constraint on gain-of-function research. Fauci didn’t give a **** and his part of the NIH funded it. BOTH THE UNITED STATES AND CHINA created the virus; it was a joint and intentional project, not rogue actors in Wuhan or Beijing who were responsible. There were people in both China and here in the US (along with presumably other nations) who were involved. They all knew damn well what happened and all of them have lied for the last 2+ years about it. That almost-certainly includes both Trump and Biden, incidentally.

The governments involved all knew before the shots were released that they were dangerous and would become worthless. They knew that natural infection did not, in most cases, carry the same risk because the virus never gets into the bloodstream in other than severe and fatal cases but there is no way to avoid that risk with an injection. We now know this factually from clinical experience (and in fact knew in the early part of 2020) — viremia does not happen in other than severe and fatal cases and yet you can’t give someone an injection without the injected material winding up in the blood in some amount.

The governments also knew that *****-19 itself was not dangerous most of the time to healthy individuals and they knew why. It was deliberately engineered that way in an attempt, this paper alleges, as an experiment to be inoculated intentionally into bats in an attempt to see whether doing so could cut off future zoonotic events. Whether the experiment went wrong by accident or intent is not known, but that it was taking place and both our government and China knew about it, along with knowing that it should not be very dangerous to most people is now established as fact.

Read more …

Wait till you meet Zuckerberg’s lawyers.

Lawsuit Aiming To Break Up Facebook Group Meta Can Go Ahead – US Court (G.)

The US competition watchdog can proceed with a breakup lawsuit against Facebook’s owner, a federal judge has ruled. Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta, the parent of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, had asked a court to dismiss an antitrust complaint brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for the second time. However, Judge James Boasberg said on Tuesday that the FTC’s revised lawsuit should be allowed to proceed. “Ultimately, whether the FTC will be able to prove its case and prevail at summary judgment and trial is anyone’s guess. The court declines to engage in such speculation and simply concludes that at this motion-to-dismiss stage, where the FTC’s allegations are treated as true, the agency has stated a plausible claim for relief,” wrote Boasberg, of the US District Court for the District of Columbia.

The FTC, under the new chair, Lina Khan, wants to force Meta to sell its photo-sharing app Instagram and its messaging service WhatsApp in one of the biggest challenges the government has brought against a tech company in decades. Its lawsuit accuses Meta of pursuing a “course of anti-competitive conduct”. The FTC originally sued Facebook during the Trump administration, and its complaint was rejected by the court in June last year. The agency filed an amended complaint in August, adding more detail on the accusation that the social media company had crushed or bought rivals. Meta’s platforms are used by 2.8 billion people around the world on a daily basis.

Boasberg said this time round the FTC had been “far more robust and detailed” in presenting its case. He wrote: “The agency has also explained that Facebook not only possesses monopoly power but that it has wilfully maintained that power through anti-competitive conduct – specifically, the acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp.”

Read more …














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Mar 302020

Hasui Kawase Mimhae Pavilion, Kyongju, Korea 1940


Earlier today in the March 30 Automatic Earth Debt Rattle aggregator I promised to come back to this. I wrote:

Dr. Fauci, Trump’s main medical/epidemic advisor, said yesterday that 200,000 Americans could die from COVID19. The same Fauci, as I quoted two days ago, recently changed his case fatality rate prediction from 1% to 0.1%. I had to let that sink in for a while, because if those 200,000 people represent that 0.1%, he now apparently believes that 200 million Americans could be infected with the coronavirus. The official number of infected Americans right now according to Worldometer is 142,735. The official death number is 2,489.

On top of that, Trump said, undoubtedly after conferring with Fauci among others, that the coronavirus peak in the USA is expected to take place in two weeks (Easter). You get where I’m going with this: how on earth are the numbers supposed to add up? In proven Trumpian fashion, Fauci did cover himself: “We’re going to have millions of cases.” But he added “I don’t want to be held to that” because the pandemic is “such a moving target.“ We’re going to have millions of cases, but don’t hold me to that…”

I think most people see these numbers flash by without realizing what they mean.

I found that remarkable not only because of the 200 million number implied, But also because Dr. Fauci had said a number of different, varying things off late. Here I am from the March 28 Debt Rattle:

Weird turnarounds: Fauci goes from a 1.0% CFR to 0.1% in 2 weeks, Neil Ferguson takes just 10 days to move from 500,000 [UK] deaths to under 20,000. Oh, and Deborah Brix claims the US have “..enough data now of the real experience with the coronavirus on the ground..” and, well, after all: “Models are [just] models”.

Now, she of course in fact merely has new models based on new data (so why diss models?), and it’s not nearly enough; re: testing. What Fauci and Ferguson hope to accomplish in risking their credibility with their sudden “moodswings” is unclear, but they’re not sufficiently supported by new data either. Not in that amount of time. Political pressure perhaps?

Dr. Fauci mentioned the 0.1% case fatality rate here on March 24:

Dr. Fauci: Coronavirus Death Rate Like Very Bad Flu

Dr. Anthony Fauci, a key member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, co-authored an article published Thursday in the New England Journal of Medicine predicting the fatality rate for the coronavirus will turn out to be like that of a “severe seasonal influenza.” In an exceptionally bad flu season, the case fatality rate is about one-tenth of 1 percent, the authors write. Regarding the current coronavirus pandemic, they said: “If one assumes that the number of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic cases is several times as high as the number of reported cases, the case fatality rate may be considerably less than 1%.”

While the reference to Dr. Fauci talking about a 1% case fatality rate comes for instance from this, on March 4 (a view he didn’t correct until the March 24 piece above):

Fauci Says It’s Too Early To Determine US Death Rates From Coronavirus

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told the House Appropriations subcommittee in Congress on Wednesday [March 4] that it remains difficult to determine accurate mortality rates of the new coronavirus outbreak, given that we simply do not know yet how many have been infected with the disease. [..] amid the coronavirus outbreak, many representatives took the opportunity to grill Fauci on the latest developments.

“We don’t know the denominator,” Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md., noted to Fauci when asking whether mortality rates are reliable. “You said it, sir,” Fauci responded [..] “If you look at the cases that have come to the attention of the medical authorities, in China, and you just do the math — the math is about 2%. If you look at certain age groups, certain risk groups, the fatality is much higher.”

[..] Amid continuing questions around the numbers, Harris asked Fauci about the accuracy numbers published by the WHO on Tuesday stating the death rate is 3.4% globally. [..] In the U.S., the administration is still working to ascertain the full number of Americans infected by the disease. The administration has been hamstrung by a slow rollout of testing, making it difficult to track. “I’m torn,” Fauci said. “If we get enough data to have a big [numerator] it’s gonna be bad news for us.” “You know as well as anybody that the mortality for seasonal flu is .1%,” he added. “So even if it goes down to 1%, it’s still 10 times more fatal.”

And then yesterday, the good doctor says the following:

Dr. Fauci Says 200,000 Americans Could Die From The Coronavirus

The coronavirus outbreak could kill 100,000 to 200,000 Americans, the U.S. government’s top infectious-disease expert warned on Sunday as smoldering hot spots in nursing homes and a growing list of stricken cities heightened the sense of dread across the country. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, made the dire prediction of fatalities on CNN, adding that millions in the U.S. could become infected. “I would say between 100,000 and 200,000 cases,” he said, correcting himself to say he meant deaths. “We’re going to have millions of cases.” But he added “I don’t want to be held to that” because the pandemic is “such a moving target.”


Graph by Mike Shedlock based on data from Covid Tracking Project. (Mind the scale)


What I find remarkable is that I haven’t seen a single reporter, TV, newspaper, add that up to the “200 million Americans infected” number. It’s a simple 2+2=4. If 200,000 people die with an 0.1% infection rate, total infections are 200 million.

Unless Dr. Fauci would now claim that either the 0.1% OR the 200,000 deaths claims or wrong. And I obviously know he also said ‘the pandemic is “such a moving target”’, But he should know he’s in the public eye, and adjust his claims to that fact. Besides, he just changed his claims.

Granted, I also wrote this morning:: “Wonder if he’s included the effects of a health care system collapse. Ironically, that might make his numbers more realistic.”, but that wouldn’t negate his claims.

And then of course you get the following, given that Dr. Fauci is the no. 1 medical/epidemic advisor to President Trump, or at least the most visible -with Dr. Deborah Brix:

Trump: Keeping US COVID-19 Deaths To 100,000 Would Be A ‘Very Good Job’

Donald Trump has extended America’s national shutdown for a month, bowing to public health experts, and scientific reality, and warning that the worst of the coronavirus pandemic is yet to come. Speaking in the White House Rose Garden, the US president claimed that, if his administration keeps the death toll to 100,000, it will have done “a very good job” – a startling shift from his optimistic predictions of a few days ago when he said he hoped to restart the economy by Easter.

It’s easy to slam Trump for these things, and part of that will be justified and well deserved, but Trump relies on his medical staff to a large extent, even if he deviates from what they say from time to time. If only because as you now know, his medical team change their opinions quite a bit. And he never “predicted” the economy would reopen by Easter, he merely said he hoped it would.

Moreover, in this case he’s right: if Dr. Fauci predicts 200,000 fatalities, limiting it to half that number would be a good thing. But more importantly, as Trump predicts a peak by Easter, after talking to Dr. Fauci, but we’re still 200,000 deaths minus 2,600 removed from Dr. Fauci’s “goal”, and 200 million cases minus 144,000, why don’t we read and hear about the gigantic numbers closely ahead of us in the press?

Perhaps you don’t have to be halfway at the peak, but you certainly must be quite a ways there. What would that mean for the next two week though? Dr.? And I know, Dr. Fauci said between 100,000 and 200,000 deaths, but given the gap between today and either of those numbers, it hardly even seems to matter.

15 days to Easter to -only?!- get to 100,000 deaths means 6,667 deaths a day, or maybe a little less. Because otherwise you can’t credibly claim a peak. Your homework for the day: Color the pictures and finish the story.



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Aug 262014
 August 26, 2014  Posted by at 9:32 pm Finance Tagged with: , ,  6 Responses »

DPC Post and Montgomery, corner of Market, San Francisco post quake Apr 1906

Courtesy of Tyler Durden comes a 22,000+ word ‘essay’ from Mark Blyth and Eric Lonergan at the Council on Foreign Relations (yes, those fine folks) on how and why swaths of dough should be handed to the man in the street. But that’s not what the CFR stands for, so this calls for deconstruction, if not demolition.

It might be a really good idea if money were handed out to the real economy instead of a bunch of banks. It might be better if central banks would just leave the economy be. But that’s not what the CFRs of the planet want: they want governments and central bankers in every aspect of our lives.

They want full control. And they pretty much already have it. If they offer us free money on top, we’ll sing their praises in temples. But we’ll come to regret the whole thing more than we have any idea of. We can do just fine if they just stay out. Still, once you’ve granted people power over others, especially large numbers of them, they’ll be very reluctant to let it go.

And they’ll end up squeezing the living daylights out of you and yours. It’s how nature works. These tendencies and instincts don’t stop of their own accord, they need to be stopped from some place outside of themselves.

Print Less but Transfer More: Why Central Banks Should Give Money Directly to the People

Today, most economists agree that like Japan in the late 1990s, the global economy is suffering from insufficient spending, a problem that stems from a larger failure of governance.

Questions right off the bat: Isn’t ‘insufficient spending, whatever it may mean, a problem that stems from people not having enough to spend? What exactly does it have to do with governance? Isn’t it just as likely that governance is the cause of not having enough to spend?

And how would one define ‘insufficient spending’ to begin with? Is this where people can’t buy enough food for their children, or is it where GDP growth fails to meet economists’ models? And don’t tell me those are the same thing.

Central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve, have taken aggressive action, consistently lowering interest rates such that today they hover near zero. They have also pumped trillions of dollars’ worth of new money into the financial system. Yet such policies have only fed a damaging cycle of booms and busts, warping incentives and distorting asset prices, and now economic growth is stagnating while inequality gets worse.

It’s well past time, then, for U.S. policymakers – as well as their counterparts in other developed countries – to consider a version of Friedman’s helicopter drops. In the short term, such cash transfers could jump-start the economy. Over the long term, they could reduce dependence on the banking system for growth and reverse the trend of rising inequality.

First of all: why should policymakers do anything at all? Why shouldn’t they just retract from the markets other than in a regulatory sense, meant to protect the weak from the rich, and prey from predators? What role do central banks or governments have in that?

Is all we can take from this that what they’ve done is simply the wrong policy, and now they should switch to another, thought up by economists? Why do we need any such policy? Why isn’t that the first and central question? Am I missing something?

Next, note, in the following, how the authors entirely avoid the question whether governments and/or central banks SHOULD try to boost spending; for them, that’s a done deal.

In theory, governments can boost spending in two ways: through fiscal policies (such as lowering taxes or increasing government spending) or through monetary policies (such as reducing interest rates or increasing the money supply). But over the past few decades, policymakers in many countries have come to rely almost exclusively on the latter.

Presidents and prime ministers need approval from their legislatures to pass a budget; that takes time [..] Many central banks, by contrast, are politically independent and can cut interest rates with a single conference call. Moreover, there is simply no real consensus about how to use taxes or spending to efficiently stimulate the economy.

Yeah, but why would we want central banks to cut interest rates with a phone call? What good does that do anyone other than those who already make money like water?

Low interest rates reduce the cost of borrowing and drive up the prices of stocks, bonds, and homes. But stimulating the economy in this way is expensive and inefficient, and can create dangerous bubbles – in real estate, for example – and encourage companies and households to take on dangerous levels of debt.

Well, yes, low rates suck in people into borrowing for homes they can’t afford, making those same homes even less affordable. Not rocket science. And they kill those same people’s pension plans.

And that’s what the Oracle describes here:

That is precisely what happened during Alan Greenspan’s tenure as Fed chair, from 1997 to 2006 [..] Greenspan was completely honest about what he was doing. In testimony to Congress in 2002, he explained how Fed policy was affecting ordinary Americans:

“Particularly important in buoying spending [are] the very low levels of mortgage interest rates, which [encourage] households to purchase homes, refinance debt and lower debt service burdens, and extract equity from homes to finance expenditures. Fixed mortgage rates remain at historically low levels and thus should continue to fuel reasonably strong housing demand and, through equity extraction, to support consumer spending as well.”

Translation: How to suck in all the greater fools you can find, since there’s money to be squeezed out of them and at the same time they’ll believe the economy is doing fine, for a while longer.

Greenspan’s model crashed and burned when the housing market imploded in 2008. Yet nothing has really changed since then. The United States merely patched its financial sector back together and resumed the same policies that created 30 years of financial bubbles. Consider what Bernanke did with his policy of “quantitative easing.” Bernanke aimed to boost stock and bond prices in the same way that Greenspan had lifted home values. Their ends were ultimately the same: to increase consumer spending.

Really? That’s what Bernanke was shooting for? Increase consumer spending? And Greenspan too? You sure they weren’t just trying to boost bank profits? And no, they’re not even remotely alike.

Higher asset prices have encouraged a modest recovery in spending, but at great risk to the financial system and at a huge cost to taxpayers. Yet other governments have still followed Bernanke’s lead. Japan’s central bank, for example, has tried to use its own policy of quantitative easing to lift its stock market. So far, however, Tokyo’s efforts have failed to counteract the country’s chronic underconsumption. In the eurozone, the European Central Bank has attempted to increase incentives for spending by making its interest rates negative, charging commercial banks 0.1% to deposit cash. But there is little evidence that this policy has increased spending.

I don’t think Japan followed Bernanke, it’s the other way around. That neither increased spending is obvious. That neither aimed to achieve that is less so, but it does fit the evidence (just not the PR).

Know what would be scary? if these policies HAVE increased spending, and we’re still where we are today. That would mean we’re in far deeper doo than we ever considered.

China is already struggling to cope with the consequences of similar policies, which it adopted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. To keep the country’s economy afloat, Beijing aggressively cut interest rates and gave banks the green light to hand out an unprecedented number of loans.

What will be the result in China? All out civil war, or just very many very bloody local battles? The jury’s still out, but things ain’t looking good.

The broader global economy, meanwhile, may have already entered a bond bubble and could soon witness a stock bubble. Housing markets around the world, from Tel Aviv to Toronto, have overheated. Many in the private sector don’t want to take out any more loans; they believe their debt levels are already too high. That’s especially bad news for central bankers: when households and businesses refuse to rapidly increase their borrowing, monetary policy can’t do much to increase their spending.

They don’t just believe it; their debts are too high. What happened to make debt a matter of faith?

Over the past 15 years, the world’s major central banks have expanded their balance sheets by around $6 trillion, primarily through quantitative easing and other so-called liquidity operations. Yet in much of the developed world, inflation has barely budged. To some extent, low inflation reflects intense competition in an increasingly globalized economy. But it also occurs when people and businesses are too hesitant to spend their money, which keeps unemployment high and wage growth low. In the eurozone, inflation has recently dropped perilously close to zero.

Why do we want inflation (or, what these people really mean, rising prices)? What use is it? If prices rise, we have less debt? So we can create more of it? What an infantile model that looks to be, and yet everyone wants a share.

As for “low inflation occurs when people and businesses are too hesitant to spend their money”, that’s dead on (but gets lost among all the other jibber jabber): the inflation rate is directly – we’re talking umbilical cord – connected to spending, which is connected to what people actually possess, not what ‘authorities’ or banks allow them to borrow, that’s just a passing phase.

This so-called “rising prices ‘inflation'” is low because the velocity of money is at about historical lows. And it is because people have gotten a lot poorer over the past decade. Getting them deeper into debt won’t fix that. How is that still not clear?

Governments must do better. Rather than trying to spur private-sector spending through asset purchases or interest-rate changes, central banks, such as the Fed, should hand consumers cash directly. In practice, this policy could take the form of giving central banks the ability to hand their countries’ tax-paying households a certain amount of money.

“Handing consumers cash directly” hardly seems a job for a central bank, but it’s sure better than handing it to banks directly.

The government could distribute cash equally to all households or, even better, aim for the bottom 80% of households in terms of income. Targeting those who earn the least would have two primary benefits. For one thing, lower-income households are more prone to consume, so they would provide a greater boost to spending. For another, the policy would offset rising income inequality.

Now we’re talking. Though I fail to see how you could maintain a healthy economy by just handing out money. Other than a basic income for every citizen, but that’s a whole other concept altogether.

Such an approach would represent the first significant innovation in monetary policy since the inception of central banking, yet it would not be a radical departure from the status quo. Most citizens already trust their central banks to manipulate interest rates. And rate changes are just as redistributive as cash transfers. When interest rates go down, for example, those borrowing at adjustable rates end up benefiting, whereas those who save – and thus depend more on interest income – lose out.

No they’re not; “rate changes are just as redistributive as cash transfers” only for those who borrow.

[..] … critics warn that such helicopter drops could cause inflation. The transfers, however, would be a flexible tool. Central bankers could ramp them up whenever they saw fit and raise interest rates to offset any inflationary effects, although they probably wouldn’t have to do the latter: in recent years, low inflation rates have proved remarkably resilient, even following round after round of quantitative easing.

Wait, the idea evolves into something where a veiled wizard yanks a crank whenever (s)he see fit, and controls everybody’s lives that way. How scary does it get?

… the recurring financial panics of the past few decades have encouraged many lower-income economies to increase savings – in the form of currency reserves – as a form of insurance. That means they have been spending far less than they could, starving their economies of investments in [..]

When people save, they spend less than they could. This is distorted, if not perverse. We should push everyone to spend all they have, and then get them to borrow so they spend more than they have? So no-one will have any savings left, but instead be indebted? That’s an economic model?

… throughout the developed world, increased life expectancies have led some private citizens to focus on saving for the longer term (think Japan). As a result, middle-aged adults and the elderly have started spending less on goods and services. These structural roots of today’s low inflation will only strengthen in the coming years, as global competition intensifies, fears of financial crises persist, and populations in Europe and the United States continue to age. If anything, policymakers should be more worried about deflation, which is already troubling the eurozone.

There is no need, then, for central banks to abandon their traditional focus on keeping demand high and inflation on target. Cash transfers stand a better chance of achieving those goals than do interest-rate shifts and quantitative easing, and at a much lower cost. Because they are more efficient, helicopter drops would require the banks to print much less money. By depositing the funds directly into millions of individual accounts – spurring spending immediately – central bankers wouldn’t need to print quantities of money equivalent to 20% of GDP.

Ha! We’re finally getting to the core of the issue!

The transfers’ overall impact would depend on their so-called fiscal multiplier, which measures how much GDP would rise for every $100 transferred. In the United States, the tax rebates provided by the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008, which amounted to roughly 1% of GDP, can serve as a useful guide: they are estimated to have had a multiplier of around 1.3. That means that an infusion of cash equivalent to 2% of GDP would likely grow the economy by about 2.6%. Transfers on that scale – less than 5% of GDP – would probably suffice to generate economic growth.

Win-win. Right?

[..] … instead of trying to drag down the top, governments could boost the bottom. Central banks could issue debt and use the proceeds to invest in a global equity index, a bundle of diverse investments with a value that rises and falls with the market, which they could hold in sovereign wealth funds. The Bank of England, the European Central Bank, and the Federal Reserve already own assets in excess of 20% of their countries’ GDPs, so there is no reason why they could not invest those assets in global equities on behalf of their citizens.

After around 15 years, the funds could distribute their equity holdings to the lowest-earning 80% of taxpayers. The payments could be made to tax-exempt individual savings accounts, and governments could place simple constraints on how the capital could be used.

Wait! 15 years? Where did that come from? I thought you were going to give people money to spend tomorrow morning?! Moreover, how does this prevent the funds from being annihilated through falling markets? And who will manage the money? Goldman Sachs anyone?

For example, beneficiaries could be required to retain the funds as savings or to use them to finance their education, pay off debts, start a business, or invest in a home. Such restrictions would encourage the recipients to think of the transfers as investments in the future rather than as lottery winnings.

A 15 year wait would not immediately boost spending, I would venture. By the time the funds would be available, the economy could well be all but gone. Let alone the funds, you geniuses.

Best of all, the system would be self-financing. Most governments can now issue debt at a real interest rate of close to zero. If they raised capital that way or liquidated the assets they currently possess, they could enjoy a 5% real rate of return – a conservative estimate, given historical returns and current valuations. Thanks to the effect of compound interest, the profits from these funds could amount to around a 100% capital gain after just 15 years.

Say a government issued debt equivalent to 20% of GDP at a real interest rate of zero and then invested the capital in an index of global equities. After 15 years, it could repay the debt generated and also transfer the excess capital to households. This is not alchemy. It’s a policy that would make the so-called equity risk premium – the excess return that investors receive in exchange for putting their capital at risk – work for everyone.

This all, obviously, depends on the potential returns of the equities the funds are invested in. Alchemy or not. What happens when the return is negative?

As things currently stand, the prevailing monetary policies have gone almost completely unchallenged, with the exception of proposals by Keynesian economists such as Lawrence Summers and Paul Krugman, who have called for government-financed spending on infrastructure and research. Such investments, the reasoning goes, would create jobs while making the United States more competitive. And now seems like the perfect time to raise the funds to pay for such work: governments can borrow for ten years at real interest rates of close to zero. The problem with these proposals is that infrastructure spending takes too long to revive an ailing economy.

But a fund that takes 15 years to pay out does not take ‘too long to revive an ailing economy’?

[..] large, long-term investments are needed. But they shouldn’t be rushed. [..] Governments should thus continue to invest in infrastructure and research, but when facing insufficient demand, they should tackle the spending problem quickly and directly. [..]

Those who don’t like the idea of cash giveaways, however, should imagine that poor households received an unanticipated inheritance or tax rebate. An inheritance is a wealth transfer that has not been earned by the recipient, and its timing and amount lie outside the beneficiary’s control. Although the gift may come from a family member, in financial terms, it’s the same as a direct money transfer from the government. Poor people, of course, rarely have rich relatives and so rarely get inheritances – but under the plan being proposed here, they would, every time it looked as though their country was at risk of entering a recession.

So, your government hands you a gift, and then yanks it right out your hands again, with the promise to take care of it better than you ever could. How’s that different from what we already have?

Unless one subscribes to the view that recessions are either therapeutic or deserved, there is no reason governments should not try to end them if they can, and cash transfers are a uniquely effective way of doing so. [..] in contrast to interest-rate cuts, cash transfers would affect demand directly, without the side effects of distorting financial markets and asset prices.

But your guys idea is not to transfer anything to the people. You want people to spend more than they would have because there’s a pot of gold waiting for them beneath a 15 year rainbow.

They would also would help address inequality – without skinning the rich.

What, we don’t want to skin the rich?

By the way, how much money would you CFR guys want to hand out? Did you mean 20% of GDP for one year, or would you prefer 20 years? Just asking.

Read the whole thing. Hussman’s bright.

Fed Policy and the Growing Gap Between Wall Street and Main Street (Hussman)

When the majority of Americans examine the world around them, they see a stock market at record highs and modest apparent improvement in the economy, but they also have the sense that something remains terribly wrong, and they can’t quite put their finger on it. According to a recent survey by the Federal Reserve, 40% of American families report that they are “just getting by,” and 60% of families do not have sufficient savings to cover even 3 months of expenses. Even Fed Chair Janet Yellen seemed puzzled last week by the contrast between a gradually improving unemployment rate and persistently sluggish real wage growth. We would suggest that much of this perplexity reflects the application of incorrect models of the world. Before the 15th century, people gazed at the sky, and believed that other planets would move around the Earth, stop, move backwards for a bit, and then move forward again. Their model of the world – that the Earth was the center of the universe – was the source of this confusion.

Similarly, one of the reasons that the economy seems so confusing at present is that our policy makers are dogmatically following models that have very mixed evidence in reality. Several factors contribute to the broad sense that something in the economy is not right despite exuberant financial markets and a lower rate of unemployment. In our view, the primary factor is two decades of Fed-encouraged misallocation of capital to speculative uses, coupled with the crash of two bubbles (and we suspect a third on the way). This repeated misallocation of investment resources has contributed to a thinning of our capital base that would not have occurred otherwise. The Fed has repeatedly followed a policy course that sacrifices long-term growth by encouraging speculative malinvestment out of impatience for short-term gain. Sustainable repair will only emerge from undistorted, less immediate, but more efficient capital allocation.

In recent years, the U.S. has experienced a collapse in labor participation and weak growth in labor compensation, coupled with an increasingly lopsided distribution of whatever benefits the recent economic recovery has generated. This is not well-explained by Phillips Curves or simplistic appeals to “insufficient demand,” and it is unlikely to be improved by endless monetary “stimulus” (the targets that clearly occupy the Fed’s thinking). While our economic challenges can be largely traced to more than a decade of persistent Fed-enabled misallocation of capital, most of the costs of this misallocation have fallen on labor because of a) shifting composition of labor demand that has resulted from an increasing share of international trade with countries with heavy populations of relatively unskilled labor; and b) economic features that increasingly create a “winner-take-all” distribution of economic gains.

Read more …

Because it is.

Why “S&P 2000” Is A Fed Manufactured Mirage (Stockman)

That 4% market correction was quick and virtually painless. Not missing a beat after the market briefly tested 1900, the dip buyers came roaring back—- gunning for the 2000 marker on the S&P 500, confident that longs were not selling and that shorts had long ago been obliterated. Needless to say, bubblevision had its banners ready to crawl triumphantly across the screen. When the algos finally did print the magic 2000 number, it represented a 200% gain from the March 2009 lows. And to complete the symmetry, the S&P 500 thereby clocked in at exactly 20X LTM reported earnings based on consistent historical pension accounting. The bulls said not to worry because the market is still “cheap” – like it always is, until it isn’t. Yet now more than ever is the time to keep the champagne corked. The stock charts show an outsized skunk in the woodpile, while the economic data completely belie the sizzling gains in risk asset prices that have been racked up during the last 65 months.

Even more crucially, the Wall Street casino’s puppeteers at the Fed more or less admitted at Jackson Hole that they are utterly lost in Keynesian voodoo. To put it generously, Yellen’s speech amounted to a vaporous word cloud wrapped in incoherent double-talk. In this context, Lance Roberts recently published a stock chart that shows why “S&P 2000? is yet another signal that a giant financial train wreck is waiting to happen. For a fleeting moment six years ago, the thundering 50% plunge of the stock indices caused a crisis of confidence in the Wall Street casino that had been fostered over two decades by Greenspan and Bernanke. During that short season of trauma and disbelief, the idea briefly resonated that prosperity cannot be built on towering mountains of debt and egregious stimulation and manipulation of financial markets by the central bank.

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That’s a very benign way of putting it.

Slowing Home Sales Show U.S. Market Lacks Momentum (Bloomberg)

The pace of new-home sales fell to the slowest in four months in July, signaling U.S. real estate lacks the vigor to propel faster growth in the economy. Purchases unexpectedly declined 2.4% to a 412,000 annualized pace, weaker than the lowest estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg, Commerce Department data showed today in Washington. June purchases were revised up to a 422,000 rate after a May gain that was also bigger than previously estimated. Housing has advanced in fits and starts this year as tight credit and slow wage growth kept some prospective buyers from taking advantage of historically low borrowing costs. Bigger job and income gains, along with a further slowdown in price appreciation, would help make properties more affordable. “It’s a little bit disappointing,” said Thomas Simons, an economist at Jefferies LLC and the top forecaster of new-home purchases over the past two years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. “The new-home sales data have no traction whatsoever and don’t seem to be gaining at all.”

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You mean, like Detroit?

US Bank Liquidity Rule Said to Exclude Municipal Bonds (Bloomberg)

Municipal bonds will be excluded from the group of easily sellable assets that banks can use to show they’re able to survive a credit crunch, according to a person familiar with the rule. Regulators including the Federal Reserve are set to approve a final liquidity rule on Sept. 3. The most recent draft bars debt issued by states and municipalities from being listed as high-quality assets that could help sustain a bank through a 30-day squeeze, said the person, speaking on condition of anonymity because the process isn’t public. Hoping to head off the kind of vulnerability seen during the 2008 credit crisis, the Fed, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. based their rule on an accord reached by the 27-nation Basel Committee on Banking Supervision. An initial version proposed last year, which called for a 2017 implementation, was toughest on banks with more than $250 billion in assets or major global reach.

The regulations could weigh on prices in the $3.7 trillion municipal bond market by giving banks less incentive to buy bonds that finance schools, roads and public works. Fitch Ratings in January said that an exclusion could lead banks to begin cutting their holdings in the market. “Over time there would be less demand for municipal securities,” said Michael Decker, a managing director who tracks municipal securities regulations for the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. “The result would be higher borrowing costs for state and local governments.” Wells Fargo held the most municipal bonds among the four largest U.S. banks, with $47.3 billion on June 30, according to regulatory filings. The bank didn’t say how much was included in its liquidity tally. Wells Fargo said in May that it was compliant with the international rule and was awaiting the U.S. version.

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Where is that new cabinet?

Economic Malaise Sparks Political Crisis in France (BW)

A heavy rain fell on François Hollande as he spoke in Brittany on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Paris on Monday, leaving the French president with a drenched raincoat and fogged-up glasses. The weather is predicted to clear, but the forecast for Hollande’s presidency is looking more and more ominous. Facing an open rebellion within their ruling Socialist Party, Hollande and Prime Minister Manuel Valls dissolved the cabinet today and said they’ll name a new government within 24 hours. They acted after Economy Minister Arnaud Montebourg accused the government over the weekend of bowing to the pro-austerity “obsessions” of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Montebourg and others on the Socialists’ left wing are speaking out against Hollande’s plan to pare government spending and cut taxes on business—an approach that they say will further undermine France’s stagnant economy.

Montebourg didn’t give Hollande and Valls time to fire him; he announced today that he had resigned, in a speech blasting the government for “absurd” policies. Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti said she’d also step aside, and some other ministers who’ve sided with Montebourg are likely to be replaced as well. Yet the shake-up actually could make things worse. “The reshuffle will probably worsen the internal divisions” within the ruling party, says Antonio Barroso of Teneo Intelligence in London. Although the Socialists still have a majority in Parliament, “rogue deputies could start voting against some of the upcoming economic measures.” Montebourg, meanwhile, will continue to speak out as he positions himself to run for president in 2017, Barroso predicts.

Divisions within the Socialists, along with Hollande’s record-low 17% popularity rating in an Ipsos poll conducted last week, could make it increasingly difficult for him to govern. “One wonders what majority he will have to pass laws, notably the budget,” scheduled to be voted on in the fall, Ipsos’s Brice Teinturier told the FranceTV public television network. “The unhappiness is real and powerful.” Ironically, the debate over austerity in France is exploding just as European Central Bank President Mario Draghi is softening his position on budget-cutting. Speaking in Jackson Hole, Wyo., last week, Draghi expressed concern over slow growth in the euro zone, saying it was time to move to a “more growth-friendly composition of fiscal policies.”

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Hollande Replaces Cabinet as EU Austerity Rebellion Stirs (Bloomberg)

French President Francois Hollande’s firing of malcontent minister Arnaud Montebourg risks unleashing the ruling Socialist Party’s chief critic of budget cuts, adding to an austerity backlash stirring across Europe. Montebourg, 51, industry minister for the past two years, will not be part of the new team Hollande names today after he publicly criticized the president for “slavish” and “dogmatic” deficit reduction that he said stokes unemployment. The dismissal of a top minister underlines the political crisis confronting Hollande as he seeks to balance European Union pressure to reduce the deficit with domestic demands to revive a stalled economy. It also exposes a wider rift in Europe as Italy uses its six-month presidency of the 28-nation EU to make a stand against a German-led drive to clamp down on spending.

“The backlash against austerity has taken some time to arrive, but this is it,” Antonio Barroso, an analyst at Teneo Intelligence in London, said by phone. “Of course Montebourg has done this for his personal ambition, but his timing is good: The mood on this is shifting at the European level.” With an approval rating of just 17 percent and faced with record-high French unemployment levels, Hollande’s room for maneuver is shrinking as he slips into the second half of his five-year mandate. His purge of Montebourg from the cabinet merely moves the chief austerity critic from his side into the open, according to Arthur Goldhammer, co-chairman of the French Study Group at Harvard University’s Center for European Studies. “The breach in the Socialist Party is now an open bleeding wound,” Goldhammer said in a blog posting. “Hollande can push out Montebourg but not the problem he represents.”

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Notice how this is presented as beneficial.

Europe Bank Cleanup Driving $1.72 Trillion of Asset Sales (Bloomberg)

Europe’s largest banks are finally putting hundreds of billions of dollars of unwanted assets up for sale amid mounting competition among buyers and regulatory pressure. A wave of deals could be a boon to the region’s economy if the banks free up capital to increase lending. Banks led by London-based Barclays and including UniCredit in Milan and Credit Suisse in Zurich, have shunted more businesses, bad loans and spoiled investments into units to be sold or wound down. Such assets jumped by 65% since the end of 2013, to more than $1.72 trillion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. “The list of deals coming in across the asset classes and markets at this point is higher than it’s ever been,” said Jody Gunderson, a senior managing director at CarVal Investors LLC in Minneapolis. Banks are “driven by regulatory considerations to sell, but also market pressures for them to get back to the business of trying to produce good profits.”

Tougher capital rules have made some once-lucrative bond businesses less attractive, while regulatory scrutiny has pushed lenders to admit that soured loans won’t be repaid. Selling bad debts and underperforming operations frees up funds firms can use to increase lending. That’s important for European economies stuck in the doldrums six years after a credit squeeze and a raft of bank bailouts spilled over into a sovereign-debt crisis. “Stronger banks will be good for credit in Europe,” Paul Tucker, a former deputy governor of the Bank of England, said in an interview in Salzburg, Austria. “Weak banks don’t lend.” [..]

Europe’s efforts to clean up and recapitalize its biggest banks lagged behind those in the U.S., where the Treasury Department set up the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program in October 2008 after the housing-market meltdown and collapse of Lehman. “The U.S. forced its banks to take money, while we in Europe thought we could sit it out, and we still are in many places,” said Hans-Peter Burghof, a professor of banking and finance at the University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart, Germany. “U.S. banks had an easier time disposing of assets, which is why they’re in a better situation today.” The $1.72 trillion of loans, shareholdings and securitized products up for sale or slated to be wound down at the 23 European banks with the largest such holdings rose from about $1.04 trillion at the end of 2013, when 21 firms disclosed such information. The assets amount to about 7.9% of their combined $21.7 trillion balance sheet. Those figures are in addition to $817.6 billion of holdings at entities backed by taxpayers in Spain, Ireland, Belgium, France, Germany, Austria and the Netherlands, which are winding down banks that have failed since the 2008 credit crunch.

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China’s Falling Real-Estate Prices Trigger Protests, Clashes (MarketWatch)

The sharp drop in China’s housing prices has led to an outburst of anger among property owners, leading to violent clashes in some cases, according to local media reports Tuesday. In one case, scores of property owners surrounded a Shanghai sales office of Greentown China to protest the developer’s 25% cut to prices within a five-day period, according to a report on the NetEase news portal site. Protesters held banners with slogans such as “You cheated us!” and “300,000 yuan [$48,750] worth of assets evaporate within five days — years of work in vain!” according to photographs of the demonstration posted on the site.

The report quoted a sales manager from Greentown as saying that the price-cut was aimed to boost sales and “cope with competition” from rival China Vanke, the nation’s largest residential property developer. In other Chinese cities, such confrontations between buyers and developers have turned violent. In the eastern city of Jinan, banner-carrying owners blocked a street to protest another 25% price cut for a local housing development, this one conducted over the space of two weeks, according to the local-government-run Life Daily newspaper. The protesters clashed with a group of counter-protestors suspected to have been hired by local developers, injuring some of the demonstrators and forcing the police to break up the fight, 163.com said in a separate report.

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‘Sponsored By West IS Will Become A Nightmare For The Entire World’ (RT)

ISIS is worse than Al-Qaeda, it is not going to stay just in Syria and Iraq, they are going to come everywhere where they can create violence, havoc, and they would do anything, Imam Syed Soharwardy of Calgary told RT.

RT: The Islamic State is conducting a massive PR campaign in the Western world. How effective is it, in your opinion?

Syed Soharwardy: The ISIS campaign of recruitment in the Western world has been very successful. They have very successfully recruited hundreds and thousands of young Canadians, Europeans, and Americans. From my own city, Calgary, three young Muslim men have died in Iraq and Syria within the last two months. So it is quite disturbing and alarming, they have been very successful.

RT: The number of Westerners joining the Islamic State is growing month by month. How much danger is the UK and Europe in now that many of these jihadists have returned home?

SS: I think ISIS is a big danger to the entire world. I do not think there are only 50 British people fighting; I think more people from Britain have been fighting there. More than 100 Canadians are fighting for ISIS in Syria and Iraq, I am not sure how many Americans are there. The number is in the hundreds of thousands of people from the Western world who are fighting there, and they are not going to stay in Syria and Iraq. Al-Qaeda was created in Afghanistan and we can see now what kind of destruction and atrocities they carried out around the world. Similarly, ISIS is worse than Al-Qaeda and they are not going to stay just in Syria and Iraq, they are going to come everywhere where they can create violence, havoc, and they would do anything. My biggest concern is that they have been very successful in recruiting people from the Western world and they will be the one who will be fighting for them.

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Turkey Struggles As ‘Lone Gatekeeper’ Against IS Recruitment (Reuters)

As Islamic State insurgents threaten the Turkish border from Syria, Turkey is struggling to staunch the flow of foreign jihadists to the militant group, having not so long ago allowed free access to those who would join its neighbor’s civil war. Thousands of foreign fighters from countries including Turkey, Britain, parts of Europe and the United States are believed to have joined the Islamist militants in their self-proclaimed caliphate, carved out of eastern Syria and western Iraq, according to diplomats and Turkish officials. The militants, who seized an air base in northeast Syria on Sunday as they surge northwards, are trying to secure control of the area bordering Turkey above the city of Raqqa, their major stronghold, in a bid to further ease the passage of foreign fighters and supplies, sources close to Islamic State said.

Some of the foreign fighters in their midst reached Syria via Turkey, entering the region on flights to Istanbul or Turkey’s Mediterranean resorts, their Western passports giving them cover among the millions of tourists arriving each month in one of the world’s most visited countries. From Turkey, crossing the 900 km (560-mile) frontier into northern Syria was long relatively straightforward, as the Turkish authorities maintained an open border policy in the early stages of the Syrian uprising to allow refugees out and support to the moderate Syrian opposition in. That policy now appears to have been a miscalculation and has drawn accusations, strongly denied by the Turkish government, that it has supported militant Islamists, inadvertently or otherwise, in its enthusiasm to help Syrian rebels topple President Bashar al-Assad. [..] “Thousands of Europeans have entered Turkey en route to Syria, and a large number of them we believe have joined extremist groups,” said one European diplomat in Ankara, describing Turkey as a “top security priority” for the EU.

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Islamic State Now Resembles the Taliban With Oil Fields (Bloomberg)

With its reign of terror over a large population and ability to self-finance on a staggering scale, the extremist group that beheaded American journalist James Foley resembles the Taliban with oil wells. The Islamic State, which now controls an area of Iraq and Syria larger than the U.K., may be raising more than $2 million a day in revenue from oil sales, extortion, taxes and smuggling, according to U.S. intelligence officials and anti-terrorism finance experts. Unlike other extremist groups’ reliance on foreign donations that can be squeezed by sanctions, diplomacy and law enforcement, the Islamic State’s predominantly local revenue stream poses a unique challenge to governments seeking to halt its advance and undermine its ability to launch terrorist attacks that in time might be aimed at the U.S. and Europe.

“The Islamic State is probably the wealthiest terrorist group we’ve ever known,” said Matthew Levitt, a former U.S. Treasury terrorism and financial intelligence official who now is director of the counterterrorism and intelligence program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “They’re not as integrated with the international financial system, and therefore not as vulnerable” to sanctions, anti-money laundering laws and banking regulations.

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What else can they say?

Saudi Arabia And Iran Sound Petrol Price Warning For Motorists (Telegraph)

Oil superpowers Saudi Arabia and Iran have warned that recent declines in crude prices will be short lived. It is an ominous sign for motorists in the UK who were hoping that recent declines in the cost of a gallon of petrol would be sustained. Iran’s Petroleum Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on Tuesday that the current weakness in oil prices, which have resulted in Brent crude falling by almost 13pc to a low around $100 per barrel, will soon be reversed. “The downward crude oil price will not live long due to seasonal fluctuations,” Zanganeh was quoted as saying by an Iranian state news agency. Petrol prices in the UK have come down sharply in recent weeks in line with falling crude prices and a supermarket price war at the pumps.

The AA said last week that the average price of petrol across the UK was 129.71p a litre and diesel 133.74p, the lowest since February 2011. Although UK petrol and diesel are heavily taxed, prices on the forecourts do fluctuate in line with international oil prices. Zanganeh’s remarks followed comments made by al-Falih, chief executive of Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest state-owned oil company, which suggested that prices would have to remain around current levels to sustain enough investment to meet future demand. “To tap these increasingly expensive oil resources, oil prices will need to be healthy enough to attract needed investments,” al-Falih was quoted as saying at an industry conference by Reuters. “Long-term prices will be underpinned by more expensive marginal barrels.”

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People dying, California quadrupled.

Guatemala Declares State Of Emergency Amid Central America Drought (IBT)

Guatemala’s government declared a state of emergency in the majority of its provinces, which have been affected by one of the country’s worst droughts. The dry spell has mainly affected local staples like corn and beans, and could cost the country millions of dollars in agricultural losses. President Otto Perez Molina declared a state of emergency on Monday in 16 of its 22 provinces, which are home to nearly 236,000 families, most of whom are dependent on agriculture, according to Associated Press. Molina’s announcement will have to be approved by the country’s legislature before the government can authorize emergency assistance and humanitarian aid for people in the affected regions.

“At a cabinet meeting this Monday, we signed a governmental decree that declares a State of Calamity in 17 departments as a result of the effects on agriculture of the prolonged drought,” Molina said in a tweet, according to Xinhua. In a later tweet, Molina modified the number of affected provinces to 16. Guatemala would need nearly $60 million to tackle the food shortage that the country is facing, Xinhua reported, citing the country’s agriculture minister Elmer Lopez, and added that the emergency plan is expected to be put in place by October. Although the rainy season in the Central American country typically lasts from May through October, rains have been absent since the beginning of June, Xinhua reported.

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Not nearly enough; WHO is losing control.

WHO Seeks $430 Million For Coordinated Fight Against Ebola (Bloomberg)

More than $430 million will be needed to bring the worst Ebola outbreak on record under control, according to a draft document laying out the World Health Organization’s battle strategy. The plan sets a goal of reversing the trend in new cases within two months, and stopping all transmission in six to nine months. It requires funding by governments, development banks, the private sector and in-kind contributions, according to the document obtained by Bloomberg News.

The current outbreak, which has killed 1,427 people in Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Nigeria, may soon exceed all previous Ebola outbreaks combined. The sum now being sought is six times more than the $71 million the WHO suggested was needed in a plan published less than a month ago. There is reason to be concerned “about whether the proposed resources would be adequate,” said Barry Bloom, a public health professor at Harvard University who also questioned whether the funds would be made available fast enough, and whether the organization’s latest plan “would ensure the expertise from WHO that is needed.”

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