Politics and Legislation
House passes JOBS act
By Pete Kasperowicz
The House Thursday afternoon overwhelmingly approved legislation aimed at easing the rules for capital formation for small companies, which Republicans hailed as a major job-creation bill but Democrats said is just a minor fix for the economy.
Members approved the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) act in a 390-23 vote that saw 158 Democrats join every voting Republican in support of the bill. All “no” votes were Democrats.
Senate blocks Keystone pipeline approval plan
By Ben Geman
The Senate has rejected a GOP plan to approve construction of the Keystone oil pipeline after President Obama made personal calls to Democrats urging them to oppose it.
The 56-42 vote staves of an election-year rebuke of Obama, but will give political ammunition to backers of TransCanada Corp.’s plan to build a pipeline connecting Alberta’s massive tar sands projects to Gulf Coast refineries.
The Bipartisan Force Behind the For-Profit College Scam: Big Money
Zaid Jilani, Republic Report:
“As we head into an election year, we’re going to increasingly hear that Democrats and Republicans fight like cats and dogs, that there is a civil war in Washington. This describes the state of play on some issues, but on others there is bipartisan agreement to do the wrong thing: Both parties do what the money tells them to do.”
Asia Buys Gold After Massive Single Trade Sell Off During Bernanke’s Testimony
China faces huge employment pressure: minister
BEIJING, March 7 (Xinhua) — China faces huge employment challenges in 2012 brought by a large number of job seekers and unbalanced job market, Yin Weimin, minister of human resources and social security, said Wednesday.
Chinese cities and towns will see 25 million more people join the workforce this year, half of whom will be university and college graduates, while another 9 to 10 million rural residents will seek jobs away from home, Yin said at a press conference during the ongoing parliamentary session.
Financial Survival Network: Darryl Schoon Sees the Mother of All Crashes Coming Soon–02-28-2012
Economic Recovery for Whom?
Richard D. Wolff, Truthout:
“The truth about ‘economic recovery’ is that, for the mass of people, it is untrue. For the top 10 percent and especially the top 1 percent – those who brought global capitalism into crisis in 2007 – recovery has been real…. ‘Recovery’ is the go-to word when business and government impose conditions to make the US more profitable especially for big business. ‘Recovery,’ in this capitalist economy, refers to profits, not to people.”
Fractal Analysis: Gold to $3,500 this year still likely despite crash
On the News With Thom Hartmann: A New Study Shows That Extreme Poverty in America Has Doubled in the Last 15 Years, and More
In today’s On the News segment: A new study shows that extreme poverty in America has doubled in the last 15 years, a new front has opened up in the battle against Citizens United, European austerity continues to take its toll, and more.
U.S. jobs data lift world stocks
NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. and European stocks advanced on Wednesday after promising U.S. jobs data, and the euro rebounded after hitting a three-week low on renewed optimism that Greek will complete its debt restructuring after major banks and pension funds pledged their support.
Completion of the debt restructuring is crucial for Greece to secure 130 billion euros in international rescue funds needed so it can avert a chaotic default.
Banks and Congress Grapple With Stubborn, Stupid Facts
Michael Winship, Moyers & Co.:
“Facts are stubborn things, said founding father John Adams, a basic truth Ronald Reagan famously mangled at the Republican National Convention in 1988, when he tried to quote Adams and declared, ‘Facts are stupid things,’ before correcting himself…. Witness the resistance on the part of banking institutions and certain members of the congressional leadership, despite regulations demanding that they allow facts and figures to be reported, information that could keep us from the edge of yet another economic meltdown.”
U.S. Consumers Stronger Than Expected: Barry Ritholtz Isn’t Buying It
In Troubled Europe, Agonizing Options
Paul Krugman, Krugman & Co.:
“It’s not too hard to see what Europe as a whole should be doing: less in terms of demands for austerity, much more general reflation … And you can make the case that austerity, at least at this level of harshness, is actually counterproductive even in fiscal terms: it depresses growth, so that the debt position becomes worse even if the current budget deficit is reduced. It’s much harder, however, to say what the leaders of such peripheral economies should do.”
Illinois state ‘on brink of collapse’
Illinois’ financial problems are forcing it to choose between its pensions and its teeth.
Governor Pat Quinn says the state needs to face its “rendezvous with reality” and tackle its dysfunctional budget habits. Top of the list, Mr Quinn says, is to slash spending on Medicaid, a federal programme that provides healthcare to poor Americans.
To save a system he says is “on the brink of collapse”, Mr Quinn proposes cutting $2.7bn from Illinois’ $11.5bn Medicaid bill. Few would dispute that the state needs to change its behaviour. Last year, Illinois underfunded Medicaid by $2bn as it struggled with debts totalling more than $280bn, an $86bn hole in its public pension funds and a $9bn backlog of unpaid bills.
OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Chu, White House rebut gas price claims
State of play: Energy Secretary Steven Chu will appear before a House Energy and Commerce Committee panel Wednesday to defend the Obama administration’s fiscal 2013 budget request.
As with previous budget hearings, expect Republican lawmakers to pepper Chu with questions about gasoline prices and the administration’s $535 million loan guarantee to failed solar panel firm Solyndra. Chu has become a top target for Republicans over the issues.
Republicans have pounced on Chu’s recent comments to allege that the administration wants higher gas prices, a claim both the Energy Department and the White House have strongly denied.
Obama Phone: Gov to Spend $2.4 Billion On Millions of Free Phones In 2012
One of the complaints about the U.S. Constitution recently, being as outdated as it is, is that it fails to guarantee certain unalienable rights such as free medical care, housing , food, and of course, the right to bear cell phones. And, although the founders failed to specifically cite social programs as a necessary element for promoting the general welfare, the living nature of our founding document has been interpreted by political and legal scholars alike to allow for the seizure of assets by force from one group of people in order to redistribute those assets in a fair and responsible manner to those less fortunate.
As such, if you’re one of the 100 million Americans living below or at the edge of the poverty line, you’ll be happy to know that you more than likely qualify for a free cellular phone, also known as the Obama Phone, from the US government:
Wars and Rumors of War
Attacking Iran: Just Because We Can, Doesn’t Mean We Should
Camillo “Mac” Bica, Truthout:
“The debate regarding Iran’s nuclear program has focused upon pragmatic, tactical, strategic and economic issues regarding the feasibility and consequences of continuing and/or escalating military action against Iran…. While such discussions may have media and political appeal, they are premature and miss the point entirely. They either take for granted or completely ignore the more fundamental question of whether continuing/escalating a war with Iran is the right thing to do, not militarily or pragmatically, but legally and morally.”
By conjuring the Holocaust, Netanyahu brought Israel closer to war with Iran
Haaretz’s editor-in-chief says that the Prime Minister publicly booby-trapped himself to war with Iran by comparing the need to strike its nuclear program with the Jewish request to bomb Auschwitz.
Netanyahu, Obama divided on price of Israeli strike against Iran
Netanyahu considers missiles on Tel Aviv preferable to nukes in Iran, says senior Israeli official.
Stratfor leaks: NATO commandos in illegal special ops in Syria
Wikileaks is a part of the covert operations, a part of the perception management, a part of the forged agenda to have you psychologically prepared for the coming war. When the times comes and you turn on the radio or TV with news that Israel/US have initiated airstrikes in Syria and/or Iran you will not even think twice about it and go about your day not giving a shit about what the hell is really going on in the Middle East .
Amy Goodman, Op-Ed: While the Republican candidates attack Barack Obama daily for the high cost of gasoline, both sides are traveling down the same perilous road in their support of nuclear power. This is mind-boggling, on the first anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, with the chair of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission warning that lessons from Fukushima have not been implemented in this country.
Despite Risks, Undocumented Immigrants Stage “Coming Out of the Shadows” Week
Yana Kunichoff, Truthout:
“Despite a year of record deportations and little movement on a progressive immigration policy, undocumented people are coming out and publicly declaring their immigration status for the third year in a row, telling American society that they are ‘undocumented, unafraid and unapologetic.’ March 10 will be the first day of a weeklong set of actions by a coalition of groups in Illinois to highlight the continuing crisis caused by enforcement and lack of rights in immigrant communities.”
Reclaiming the Commons (Graphic Journalism)
Susie Cagle, Truthout:
“Founded by squatters more than 150 years ago, full of foreclosed buildings, and shrinking by thousands per year, Oakland in many ways presents as a tremendously attractive target for occupation. But it’s been a bumpy road since the first camps were cleared on October 26.”
UN top torture official denounces Bradley Manning’s detention
In December, 2010, the U.N.’s special rapporteur on torture announced a formal investigation into the conditions of Bradley Manning’s detention that endured for the eight months he was held at a Marine brig in Quantico, Virginia. The Army Private has been detained since May, 2010, on charges that he leaked classified documents to WikiLeaks, but has not yet been tried. Yesterday, the U.N. official overseeing the investigation pronounced that “Bradley Manning was subjected to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment in the excessive and prolonged isolation“ to which he was subjected at Quantico. That official, Juan Ernesto Mendez, heads the U.N. office created by the U.N. Commission on Human Rights, bestowed with the mandate “to examine questions relevant to torture.”
Two Murdoch journalists reportedly attempt suicide as pressure mounts
By msnbc.com staff and news services
Two senior journalists working for Rupert Murdoch’s News International have attempted suicide as pressure mounts at the scandal-hit publisher of the now-defunct News of the World, according to media reports.
The suicide attempts follow weeks of intense scrutiny of the role of The Sun, another Murdoch paper, in the phone-hacking scandal and police bribery case.
High- end Madam for running upper East Side brothel is a suburban mom with four children
Arrest was culmination of five-year investigation by Manhattan DA’s office
A high-end madam who boasted she used cops as security and made millions by peddling flesh — including underage girls — to rich and powerful clients has been busted after a five-year probe, prosecutors said.
The Manhattan district attorney’s office indicted petite, blond, green-eyed Anna Gristina, 44, in a corruption investigation that amassed 50 to 100 hours of audio and video recordings, some showing prostitutes doing the deed, according to court records.
“Journalist” Paul Conroy is MI6 operative
Portrayed as a photojournalist for The Sunday Times, Paul Conroy, who has recently escaped from the Islamic Emirate of Baba Amr, is a British MI6 agent.
Engineer reveals shockingly simple method to defeat any airport body scanner and smuggle guns, explosives onto airplanes without being detected
By Mike Adams, March 7 2012
(NaturalNews) The following is an article by Steve Watson, an in-house reporter for InfoWars (www.InfoWars.com). Steve covered the astonishing breaking news of an engineer who revealed a shockingly simple loophole that completely defeats the TSA’s “naked body scanners” and would allow anyone to smuggle guns, explosives, box cutters or practically any metallic objects directly onto airplanes. Even more astonishingly, as this story reports, YouTube immediately censored the video of this engineer…
155 resignations from global banks, investment houses, and money funds
155 RESIGNATIONS FROM WORLD BANKS, INVESTMENT HOUSES, MONEY FUNDS
I don’t mind if you re-blog this listing. Save yourself the wear and tear on your karma and do me the favor of including http://americankabuki.blogspot.com in your reposting. Thanks to all who have caught minor errors. Special thank to Gabriel at Facebook Global Mass Resignations for some resignations I did not find in my searches.
Updated 3/7/12 Huge amount of resignations today. Special thanks to Gabriel of Facebook GLOBAL MASS RESIGNATIONS for the heads up on a number of new banking resignations that I missed. Gabriel will be tracking Insurance, Government and Healthcare Resignations. There’s been a large number of Healthcare resignations lately.
█▓▒░ End of list as of 3/7/12 ░▒▓█
It is not known under what circumstances these individuals have left their positions, I make no judgement on that. I find the timing of so many resignations extremely curious and a temporal marker in history of high significance. No one should assume I make any judgement about the character of these people. I frankly don’t know their reputations except for a few rather famous ones.
This list includes Banks, Investment Houses, Sovereign Wealth Funds, Equity Funds, Savings Retirement Funds and other shadow banking organizations. The line is very blurry between these entities, some are owned by banks some are banks, some invest in banks as well as owning entire industries (common in Hong Kong and Japan).