Is Money the Root of All Evil?

Mike Maloney reads from Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged.  Specifically, the part of the story where Francisco d’Anconia gives his discourse on money, how it is earned by productive people and either looted or mooched away by unproductive people.  After questioning whether or not money is the root of all evil, Francisco asks, “What the root of money?

Francisco’s ‘money speech’ can also be read at

A most excellent excerpt:

When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion–when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing–when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors–when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you–when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice–you may know that your society is doomed.

The Retail Death Rattle

A stunning, must-read dose of economic reality entitled, The Retail Death Rattle, is posted over at The Burning Platform.

Excerpt: The entire economic recovery storyline is a sham built upon easy money funneled by the Fed to the Too Big To Trust Wall Street banks so they can use their HFT supercomputers to drive the stock market higher, buy up the millions of homes they foreclosed upon to artificially drive up home prices, and generate profits through rigging commodity, currency, and bond markets, while reducing loan loss reserves because they are free to value their toxic assets at anything they please – compliments of the spineless nerds at the FASB. GDP has been artificially propped up by the Federal government through the magic of EBT cards, SSDI for the depressed and downtrodden, never ending extensions of unemployment benefits, billions in student loans to University of Phoenix prodigies, and subprime auto loans to deadbeats from the Government Motors financing arm – Ally Financial (85% owned by you the taxpayer). The country is being kept afloat on an ocean of debt and delusional belief in the power of central bankers to steer this ship through a sea of icebergs just below the surface.

Read the entire post at The Burning Platform.

Glenn Beck on Germany’s [Rehypothecated] Gold

Glenn Beck reviews Germany’s early 2013 request to repatriate 300 tonnes of gold held by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and then asks why the Fed responded with a pledge to return the gold in 7 years.  If the gold exists, it should be a simple matter of shipping logistics.  But 7 years?  Beck goes on to logically speculate that the gold doesn’t, in fact, exist.  The gold that the Fed has so far returned, is not the original bars first delivered to the US from Germany some 70 years ago. They are newly recast bars.  Could it be that the original gold was long ago rehypothecated, in order to maintain the illusion of a strong dollar?  Beck believes it’s even worse – that the Fed and other western central banks of the world have not only rehypothecated each other’s gold, but have even sold or transferred the physical gold to new owners.

One note of error: Beck says at one point in the video that the Fed reports holding about 6,700 tonnes of Germany’s gold. But this would be larger than Germany’s known gold reserves. As this chart shows, the Fed is only holding some 1,500 tonnes of Germany’s gold.

Jim Kunstler’s 2014 Forecast

Over at ZeroHedge, Jim Kunstler’s latest post on his forecast for 2014 is a MUST READ!!  Readers should greatly benefit from his astonishingly honest take on everything from the shale oil sham to last year’s gold slam.  He even gets into Obamacare, Bitcoin the Euro crisis and the middle east.

Excerpt: Paper and digital markets levitate, central banks pull out all the stops of their magical reality-tweaking machine to manipulate everything, accounting fraud pervades public and private enterprise, everything is mis-priced, all official statistics are lies of one kind or another, the regulating authorities sit on their hands, lost in raptures of online pornography (or dreams of future employment at Goldman Sachs), the news media sprinkles wishful-thinking propaganda about a mythical “recovery” and the “shale gas miracle” on a credulous public desperate to believe, the routine swindles of medicine get more cruel and blatant each month, a tiny cohort of financial vampire squids suck in all the nominal wealth of society, and everybody else is left whirling down the drain of posterity in a vortex of diminishing returns and scuttled expectations.

Read the entire article at ZeroHedge.

Peter Schiff: Fed Induced Phony Recovery is Bullish for Gold

Here’s Peter Schiff of Euro Pacific Capital pointing out that the recent positive GDP numbers indicate that America is spending money – money that is just created by the Fed.  The GDP “is goosed.”   If the Fed decides to take all that easy money away, the propped up markets – stocks, housing, etc. – will collapse.  This, combined with the fact that most people don’t see the value of gold in this environment, makes Schiff even more bullish on the metal.

Then & Now – Hitler & Obama

So dictatorship didn’t happen overnight.  It took 5 years, gradually, little by little to escalate to a dictatorship,” Katie Worthman, a survivor of the Natzi regime stated about the coming to power of Adolf Hitler.  She explains how people became so desperate for change, that they elected and then turned over all control to the man who spoke so eloquently and promised a better life for those who had been oppressed.  But the state would eventually take complete control via centralization.  The political, economic, religious, education, healthcare, agricultural and communication systems became state-controlled bureaucracies.  There are so many parallels between what happened in Germany in the 1930’s and what has been happening in America over the past decade – even the purpose and installation of Germany’s Gestapo can be lined up with The U.S. Homeland Security initiatives.

Take a few steps back and look objectively at the situation!

When the people fear the government – that’s tyranny!
But when the government fears the people, that’s liberty!

The Latest Budget Deal is a Joke

CNBC’s Rick Santelli and former director of the US Office of Management & Budget, David Stockman discuss the latest budget deal and how it’s beyond any sense of fiscal responsibility.

  • Eliminates caps – No ceilings to contend with for at least 2 years
  • Adds $70 billion in spending for 2013 and another $70 billion for 2014
  • Avoids most of the sequestered military & discretionary spending

Talk about kicking the can!

View at CNBC site
Providing yet more commentary on the budget deal and background on our national debt, BrotherJohnF explains the numbers behind this fiasco and shows why the US government is already bankrupt.  If it weren’t for the phony numbers being expressed by government agencies, it would be too obvious. (See US Debt Clock here.)

Four Horsemen – The Cycles of an Empire Revealed

This documentary by the Renegade Economist reveals the cycles that all the empires of the world have followed and how they all eventually fail.  The current disparity between the very rich and the very poor is but one indication that today’s western empire, led by the U.S. is approaching its end.

Comedians Show Us The Truth

What is it about a comedian that gives him that uncanny ability to put the shocking and sad truths right in front of our eyes, and yet make us laugh at them?  First up is Jon Stewart showing how the main-stream media has wavered on its reporting stance of JP Morgan’s takeover of Bear Stearns in 2008 and its recent $13 billion settlement with the Justice Department over ‘alleged’ financial misdeeds.

The Daily Show
Get More: Daily Show Full Episodes,The Daily Show on Facebook

And then there’s the slightly more serious delivery of the reality of our socioeconomic conditions in the western world by Russell Brand in this BBC interview by Jeremy Paxman.

While the comedian usually does a good job of showing us the issues, their ideas on how to solve society’s problems can be questionable.   Peter Schiff takes up the opposition to Brand’s socialist remedy in the following video.

CFTC Ends Five Year Investigation of Alleged Silver Market Manipulation

Please read the CFTC’s release carefully!!!  Too many articles on the web are incorrectly stating what was found or not found by the CFTC during its investigations.  But the release doesn’t report any findings other than stating “Based upon the law and evidence as they exist at this time, there is not a viable basis to bring an enforcement action with respect to any firm or its employees related to our investigation of silver markets.”  While it does not say that it found evidence of manipulation, it also does not say that it did not find any evidence.  It only states that they investigated the situation, by numerous means and with over 7,000 staff hours.

This is important and very revealing.  If there were laws in place that allowed certain entities to manipulate the market, the CFTC would not be able to bring legal charges against those entities even if it found the allegations of manipulation to be true.  And, as Chris Powell of GATA has demonstrated, this is exactly the situation: The authority [of the government to interfere in any market] was given in the Gold Reserve Act of 1934, which established the Exchange Stabilization Fund in the Treasury Department.

If you’re going to invest in precious metals, you need to be consciously aware that you are betting against the solvency of the United States.  The US government will indeed do all it can to defend its currency.  But they are cornered.  The western social-welfare/political-warfare state makes it necessary to debase the currency to keep everyone fat, dumb and happy.  Currency debasement techniques have been tried repeatedly throughout history, yet have always failed.  However, if the government can cast an illusion of prosperity, they’ll stay in power long enough to squeeze every last drop of real wealth from citizens.  That illusion remains in place today as all markets are either propped up or capped in order to keep everyone thinking everything’s fine.

The ongoing saga of precious metals market rigging is documented here.

Jim Rickards on All the Taper Hype: Look at the Data!

Here’s some level-headed thinking from Jim Rickards, who was proven to be correct on his call that the Fed would not taper.  While the Fed would certainly like to taper, they’ve always stated that they would do so on the condition that the economic data continues to be strong.  But the economic reporting has been terrible, so the Fed didn’t taper and won’t until those reports show viable strength.  Jim also discusses what differences, if any, the upcoming Fed-chair change may make (none), gold’s future price expectations (higher) and his new book, The Death of Money (due out in April, 2014).

Ray Dalio: How the Economic Machine Works

Ray Dalio of Bridgewater Associates narrates this video, which gives a simplified explanation of how an economy really functions when controlled by a central bank, such as the US Fed.  He shows how there are short and long-term cycles which govern credit, debt, inflation and productivity.  Dalio ends the video with some simple rules to help maintain a healthy economic system:

  • Ensure debts don’t rise faster than income
  • Ensure income doesn’t rise faster than productivity
  • Try to keep increasing productivity as much as possible

The Decline And Fall Of The Dollar & The USA

The following video from OneTruth4Life explains how America’s founding fathers created a sound money system, framed within Article I, section 8 of the Constitution.  It goes on to describe, in full detail, what’s happened since then – anti-Constitutional acts by certain government leaders and bankers, which debased the currency at various moments in history.  These acts seem to become more blatant as history proceeds, and have led to, or have been the primary motive for most, if not all, the military conflicts.  Furthermore, it will be the primary factor that will have brought the nation to its own doom at some point in the near future.

140 Years of Monetary History (In 10 Minutes)

Here again is Mika Maloney from with a great (and quick) review of what’s happened to the global monetary system in the last 140 years.  Mike explains how the world’s monetary system went from the classical gold standard in the late 1800’s to the floating fiat paper being used today.  Also quite interesting is the observation that the world’s monetary system seems to change approximately every 40 years. America’s “good as gold” dollar became the world’s reserve currency after World War II and has enjoyed its status as the world’s reserve currency.  After Nixon removed the dollar’s tie to gold in 1971, it freed the Federal Reserve & US Treasury to allow money to be created without limitation.  But now, too many dollars have been printed so we may be about to see another change in the global monetary system.

The Big Picture = Corruption

In a recent interview, Kyle Bass, the well-known founder of Hayman Capital, revealed that “There’s no real way out” of the current economic situation that has resulted from the fiscal profligacy of the central banks.  And later in that same interview, when asked his opinion of what the ‘average investor’ should be doing in this environment, Mr. Bass could only make the suggestion that they “should be very careful doing what the central bankers want them do.”  With low yielding interest rates, the central banks are pushing average investors into taking on more risk with higher yielding equities.

But it’s even worse than that.  Fundamentals don’t seem to matter much in these uncharted economic waters.  Why?  Because as Barry Ritholtz has so thoroughly outlined in his Big Picture analysis of the markets – they’re all rigged!  The average investor is at the mercy of the big banks and crony capitalism.

Yes, be very careful indeed!