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Authored by Paul Craig Roberts,
Where Do Matters Stand?
On the eve of World War II the United States was still mired in the Great Depression and found itself facing war on two fronts with Japan and Germany. However bleak the outlook, it was nothing compared to the outlook today.
Has anyone in Washington, the presstitute Western media, the EU, or NATO ever considered the consequences of constant military and propaganda provocations against Russia? Is there anyone in any responsible position anywhere in the Western world who has enough sense to ask: “What if the Russians believe us? What if we convince Russia that we are going to attack her?”
The same can be asked about China.
The recklessness of the White House Fool and the media whores has gone far beyond mere danger. What do the Russians think when they see that the Democratic Party intends to elect Hillary Clinton president of the US? Hillary is a person so crazed that she declared the president of Russia to be “the new Hitler” and organized through her underling, neocon monster Victoria Nuland, the overthrow of the democratically elected government of Ukraine. Nuland installed Washington’s puppet government in a former Russian province that until about 20 years ago was part of Russia for centuries.
I would bet that this tells even the naive pro-western part of the Russian government and population that the United States intends war with Russia.
Ever since Russia stood up to Obama over Syria, the Russians have been experiencing hostile propaganda and military operations on their borders. These provocations are justified by Washington and its NATO vassals as a response to “Russian aggression.” Russian aggression consists of nothing but obviously false assertions that Russia is about to invade the Baltics, Poland, and Romania and recreate the Soviet Empire, the Eastern European part of which, together with the former Russian provinces of Georgia and Ukraine, now belong to the American Empire.
The Russians know that the propaganda about “Russian aggression” is a lie. What is the purpose of the lie other than to prepare the Western peoples for war with Russia?
There is no other explanation.
Even morons such as Obama, Merkel, Hollande, and Cameron should be capable of understanding that it is extremely dangerous to convince a major military power that you are going to attack. To simultaneously also convince China doubles the danger.
Clearly, the West is incapable of producing leadership capable of preserving life on earth.
What can be done when the entire West demonstrates a death wish for Planet Earth?
Until the criminal regimes of Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama, American presidents from John F. Kennedy forward worked to reduce tensions with the Soviets. Kennedy worked with Khrushchev to reduce tensions caused by US missiles in Turkey and Soviet missiles in Cuba. President Nixon negotiated SALT I (the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty) and the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. President Carter negotiated SALT II, which was never ratified by the US Senate but was observed by the executive branch. President Reagan negotiated with Soviet leader Gorbachev the end of the Cold War. President George H.W. Bush in exchange for Gorbachev’s agreement to the reunification of Germany promised that NATO would not move one inch to the East.
All of these achievements were thrown away by the neoconized Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama regimes, each a criminal regime on par with Nazi Germany.
Today life on Planet Earth is far less secure than during the darkest days of the Cold War. Whatever threat global warming poses, it is miniscule compared to the threat of nuclear winter. If the evil that is concentrated in Washington and its vassals perpetrates nuclear war, cockroaches will inherit the earth.
I have been warning about the growing danger of a nuclear war resulting from the arrogance, hubris, ignorance, and evil personified by Washington. Recently, four knowledgable Russian-Americans spelled out the likely consequences of trying to drive Russia to submission with war threats: http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2016/06/03/41522/
See also: http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2016/05/28/as-our-past-wars-are-glorified-this-memorial-day-weekend-give-some-thought-to-our-prospects-against-the-russians-and-chinese-in-world-war-iii/
Don’t expect the brainwashed American population to have the moral conscience and fortitude to prevent nuclear war or even the intelligence to prevent their own vaporization. In a recent article in the Wall Street Journal Scott Sagan and Benjamin Valentino report that 59% of the US population support attacking Iran with nuclear weapons in the event that Iran sank one US Navy ship: http://www.wsj.com/articles/would-the-u-s-drop-the-bomb-again-1463682867
Republicans were much more likely than Democrats to approve attacking Iran with nuclear weapons with 81% of Republicans approving nuclear war compared to 47% of Democrats. Yet, the Democrats are behind Hillary who would be the first to use nuclear weapons. After all, a feminized woman has to prove how tough she is, just as Margaret Thatcher was “the Iron Lady.”
Before it it too late for Americans and all of humanity, arrogant Americans need to recall that “those who live by the sword, die by the sword.”
The economic picture is equally dismal and unpromising. The latest payroll jobs report was even more awful than reported. Hardly any new jobs were created, but what largely escaped reporting is the fact that the economy actually lost 59,000 full-time jobs.
Increasingly the US economy consists of part-time jobs that cannot support an independent existence. Thus, more Americans age 19-34 live at home with parents than independently with spouses or partners. Fully half of 25-year old Americans live in their childhood rooms in their parents’ homes.
This is the “New Economy” that the filthy lying neoliberal economists promised would be reward for the American work force giving up their manufacturing and professional skill jobs to foreigners. What a monstrous lie the neoliberal economists told so that corporate executives and shareholders could put into their own pockets the living wage of the American work force. These neoliberal economists, and, alas, libertarian “free market” ones, have not been held accountable for their impoverishment of the American work force deeply buried in debt with no future prospects.
Those few Americans who have any awareness are beginning to realize that the One Percent and the western governments that serve them are re-establishing feudalism. The brilliant and learned economist, Michael Hudson, has labeled our era the era of neo-feudalism.
He is correct. The majority of young Americans come out of university heavily indebted, primed for debtor prison. When half of 25-year olds cannot marry and form households, how can anyone believe that housing sales and prices are rising except as a result of speculative investors banking on rental income from a population that cannot even pay its student loans.
The United States is the sickest place on earth. There is no public or political discussion of any important issue or of the multiple crises that confront America or the crises that America brings to the world.
The American people are so stupid and unaware that they are capable of electing a criminal and a warmonger like Hillary president of the United States and be proud of it.
These “tough” Americans are so frightened of hoax dangers, such as “Muslim terrorists” and “Russian aggression” that they willingly sacrificed their depleted pocketbooks, the Constitution of the United States—an act of treason on the part of the American people who utterly failed their responsibility to protect the Constitution—and their own liberty to a universal police state that has all power over them.
It is extraordinary that once-proud, once-great European peoples look for leadership from a country of moronic non-entities who have pissed away the liberty, security, and prosperity that their Founding Fathers gave to them.
Fellow Americans, if you care to avoid vaporization and, assuming we do avoid it, live a life other than serfdom, you must wake up and realize that your most deadly enemy is Washington, not the hoax of “Russian aggression,” not the hoax of “Muslim terrorism,” not the hoax of “domestic extremism,” not the hoax of welfare bankrupting America, not the hoax of democracy voting away your wealth, which Wall Street and the corporations have already stolen and stuck in their pockets.
If you cannot wake up and escape The Matrix, your doom will bring the doom of the planet.
Loren Hebel-Osborne found herself followed by television cameras, and says it was a little unsettling. “It was a little weird to be honest, but I understood all the excitement,” she says. Hebel-Osborne was featured on an episode of the A&E television series “Airline.” “I can’t say I was the star, though. It […]
Until your movement is able to attract the support of those who do not immediately agree with you, it’s nothing more than a protest.
Across Europe, cartoonists, artists and writers are forced to live under police protection, and also often face criminal prosecution – all for the “crime” of offending Islam.
“'Respect' means, for them, submission.” It starts with censoring cartoons…
Gatestone Institute's Giulio Meotti explains what is going on across Europe…
As we concluded previously,
Speech is either free or it isn’t. One cannot have it both ways, as the EU apparatchiks apparently think. As soon as restrictions on free speech are introduced, abuse is sure to follow.
Submitted by Michael Lebowtiz of 720 Global
Loan Delinquencies may be Signaling Recession
On June 2, 2016 the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) stunned economic prognosticators and the financial media when it reported that 38,000 new jobs were created in May. The consensus forecast of Wall Street economists was 160,000 new jobs, with estimates ranging from 110,000 to 219,000. Even the most pessimistic forecast turned out grossly optimistic!
At 720 Global we do not forecast economic data, choosing, instead to focus on the bigger macroeconomic picture. That said, we were not surprised by the recent weakness of jobs data. In fact, unlike most forecasters, we do not view the recent employment data as a one-off event but as further proof of a worsening trend in economic activity. In this article, we share a few thoughts that explain why.
Corporate Profitability and Loan Delinquencies
As of the first quarter of 2016, S&P 500 annual earnings have declined for six consecutive quarters and reside at levels last seen in 2013 (data: Standard & Poor’s). Historically, as profitability falters an increasing number of corporate borrowers become delinquent on loans, or worse they default entirely. During such periods corporate executives focus on reducing expenses, which typically translates into reducing headcount. Accordingly, corporate and business loan delinquencies can serve as a barometer of future employment trends.
Commercial and Industrial (C&I) loan delinquency rates, have a strong historical correlation with employment. C&I delinquency rates have risen over the last year and a half, in-line with the decline in corporate profits, to levels last seen four years ago. While the overall delinquency rate is still relatively benign, it is increasing sharply. Another important observation about the delinquency growth rate is that delinquencies tend to trend in one direction for long periods. Note: C&I loans are loans to corporations and businesses and not individuals. Data on these loans are reported on by the Federal Reserve.
The graph below, courtesy of Cyril Castelli of R-Cube, highlights the relationship between the rate of change in C&I delinquencies and employment. The delinquency rates are inverted to better highlight the correlation.
Based on the historical correlation and the sharp growth in C&I loan delinquencies recently, it is conceivable employment drops abruptly over the next 6 months.
BLS Non-Farm Payrolls Data
The graph below charts the three-month moving average of the change in Non-Farm Payrolls against a backdrop of recession periods shaded in light blue.
Over the last 50 years, the U.S. was either in recession or just recovering from one every time three-month job growth went negative (below zero on the graph). In fact, on average a recession began when the three-month average of job growth was still well above zero at 104,000. Currently, the three-month average sits at 116,000. If next month’s report shows fewer than 151,000 jobs created, the three-month average will fall below 104,000.
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) produces two indices based on a monthly survey of manufacturing and non-manufacturing business leaders. Within the two ISM indices are component indices such as new orders, employment and prices. Most relevant to this discussion is the ISM Non-Manufacturing – Employment index. The graph below plots this index against a backdrop of recession periods.
A monthly reading above 50 signifies that a majority of those surveyed believe employment conditions are improving. A reading below 50 denotes the majority think employment conditions are worsening. The most recent reading was 49.7 but the three-month average of the ISM Non-Manufacturing Employment index has yet to break below 50. Historically, each time it has dropped below 50, the U.S. was already in a recession. That said, the three-month average of 51.0 is currently below the three-month average the last two times the U.S. economy entered a recession.
If C&I loan delinquencies prove, once again, to be a leading signal of employment trends, ensuing job losses will send the BLS employment data and the ISM non-manufacturing employment survey well below levels that, in the past, were recessionary.
Personal consumption represents 70% of GDP, therefore a financially healthy and employed consumer plays an outsized role in swaying economic trends. While the employment picture has generally been improving since the financial crisis/recession of 2008-2009, that improvement is showing signs of faltering. A worsening employment picture has serious implications for GDP growth, increasing concerns we have consistently raised about asset price valuations, which are heavily dependent upon the outlook for economic growth.