07 July 2015

First, They Come For the Weakest...

...and then they come for the others: the dissidents, the different, and the other.

And sometimes, for those who just happen to be where we do not wish them to be.

Once people have been sufficiently desensitized, over time made utterly apathetic to the condition of their fellow human beings, and provided an official rationale in the form of symbols and slogans, for murder, torture, and even the most heinous crimes out of fear and a taste for violence, almost anything is possible.

And in the end, the people are driven mad by their apathy and their complicity.   First they imagine themselves as other than human, as some type of superior being.  But as that illusion falters, and the romantic allure of their symbols and slogans become tattered, they find their otherness merely as beasts.

Great worldly power can at first appear to be awe inspiring, almost beautiful, in its scope.  How can we possibly oppose something so majestic, so shocking, so vast in its scope and reach.  But as we draw closer, we may at times perceive the smell of decay, and corruption, the rot beneath the appearance of the glamour.  And perhaps, drawing close enough, we may even catch a glimpse of the diseased eyes and evil leer behind the mask.  But by then, alas, we are his.

The wounded, the crippled, and the dead are, in this great charade, swiftly carted offstage. They are war's refuse. We do not see them. We do not hear them. They are doomed, like wandering spirits, to float around the edges of our consciousness, ignored, even reviled.”

Chris Hedges

06 July 2015

Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Charts - Rally 'Round the Swag

"Today, in view of the common good, there is urgent need for politics and economics to enter into a frank dialogue in the service of life, especially human life. Saving banks at any cost, making the public pay the price, forgoing a firm commitment to reviewing and reforming the entire system, only reaffirms the absolute power of a financial system, a power which has no future and will only give rise to new crises after a slow, costly and only apparent recovery."

Francis I

As a cultural note, 'swag' in this case is the older definition of the ill-gotten gains of criminals as in 'loot.'

It is not the modern usage of the term 'swag,' derived I think from 'swagger,' which means to dress up in ridiculous fashion accessories and outfits, and prance around like a nincompoop.

Could there have been any doubt how the markets would end up today?

On the overwhelming 'no' vote from Greece, gold and silver popped and the stock futures opened down around thirty points.
This was legitimate I think simply because the 'establishment' had mismeasured the Greek spirit so badly. They must have thought they were the Americans or the English who have a patience for oppression from 'their betters' that is truly impressive.  I would say a solid twenty percent seem to be serial masochists for the most transparent and grotesque demagogues imaginable.   I wish they could all come to some sort of private arrangement and keep the rest of us out of it. 

But soon enough it was clear that the financial engineers would be spreading the calming effects of easy money and highly leveraged derivatives around to cap gold and silver, and provide reassurances that those awkwardly positioned in the financial assets bubble need suffer no harm; their job is to inflict distress on the innocent and outsiders and not on their powerful 'friends'.

And of course this gave the pundits who have had this wrong all along a chance to redeem themselves with new sets of predictions, the most dubious of which are posed as 'questions.'   If you pose it as a question, you can claim it as a win if it is right, but you get a 'mulligan' if you are wrong because you are only asking a question, after all.

The Varoufakis resignation was pre-planned, and anyone who says he was 'sacked' by Tsipras is most probably deluded. It was a very smart play, and entirely consistent with everything they have been doing in the conduct of their negotiations right along.  

Gold and silver are obviously being manipulated. Gold is being done so because it now considered a 'currency cross' and is being shoved around by both official and speculative interests like any other currency, and with the same rationale of managing the economy while skinning the 'little people.'    I mean at this point can anyone doubt the markets are rigged?  Which ones aren't is a better question.

The stock market is being banged like an ATM by the one percent who are using a fairly impressive array of financial scams and loopholes to continue to loot the real economy, and with a surprising amount of cooperation from 'the establishment' to use an phrase from a previous generation.

History suggests that these sorts of schemes will end badly. Exactly when is not possible to predict until it is on top of you.  Although you can pay quite a few people to obtain their latest guesses.  And if those don't work, they have more.

A number of innocents will be harmed, because the people have allowed themselves to be manipulated by their darker emotions of hatred and fear.  And many of the perpetrators will continue to pile up great fortunes and political power and influence, relying on the people's credulity in the face of the big lie.  I think the wages they will be collecting in the longer term, however, are death.

The only certainty is change.

Have a pleasant evening.

Related:  Ray Dalio Bought 463,000 Shares of Silver Wheaton


SP 500 and NDX Futures Daily Charts - Putting the 'Con' in Confidence

"Let us dedicate ourselves to what the Greeks wrote so many years ago: to tame the savageness of man, and make gentle the life of this world."

Robert F. Kennedy

Today's market action was a twofold operation to

1)  give the people 'confidence' that a Greek default would be a non-event for the financial markets
2)  allow the financiers who were terribly off-footed by their mistaken belief that the Greeks would accept the Troika's domination some time to square up their accounts in their mispricing of risk.

Have a pleasant evening

05 July 2015

όχι - Greeks Overwhelmingly Vote 'No' to Austerity and Eurocracy - SP Futures Open Down 29 Points

"Power concedes nothing without demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows or both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress."

Thomas Paine

They tried to make a desert, and call it Greece.

Apparently Syriza has united the Greek people, and confounded all those who continually predicted their capitulation.

Now the real struggle for a workable solution must begin. 

To that end, Merkel and the Eurocrats have called a summit for Tuesday to discuss the situation.

Otherwise, the charade will continue, until exhaustion or reform.  The reform will not be initiated internally by the system.  It will take more acts of courageous protest and political action.

Live updates at The Guardian here.

Greeks defy Europe with overwhelming referendum 'No'
By Karolina Tagaris and Lefteris Papadimas

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greeks voted overwhelmingly on Sunday to reject terms of a bailout, risking financial ruin in a show of defiance that could splinter Europe.

With nearly half of the votes counted, official figures showed 61 percent of Greeks rejecting the bailout offer. An official interior ministry projection confirmed the figure as close to the expected final tally.

The astonishingly strong victory by the 'No' camp overturned opinion polls that had predicted an outcome too close to call. It leaves Greece in uncharted waters: risking financial and political isolation within the euro zone and a banking collapse if creditors refuse further aid...

Greece debt crisis: Greek voters reject bailout offer

With two-thirds of ballots counted, results from the Greek referendum show voters decisively rejecting the terms of an international bailout.

Figures published by the interior ministry showed 61% of those whose ballots had been counted voting "No", against 39% voting "Yes".

Greece's governing Syriza party campaigned for a "No", saying the bailout terms were humiliating.

The "Yes" campaign warned this could see Greece ejected from the eurozone.

Some European officials had also said that a "No" would be seen as an outright rejection of talks with creditors.

But Greek government officials have insisted that a "No" vote would strengthen their hand and that they could rapidly strike a deal for fresh funding in resumed negotiations.

Greek banks will reopen by Tuesday, they say.

"The German mind has a talent for making no mistakes, but the very greatest."

Clifton Fadiman

03 July 2015

Shanghai Gold Exchange Has 46.2 Tonnes of Gold Withdrawn - What Will China Do

There were 46.2 tonnes of gold withdrawn from the Shanghai gold exchange in the week ending June 26th.

Since 2009 there have been a total of 9,076 tonnes of gold withdrawn from Shanghai.

I have also included two slides from a recent presentation by Zhang Bingnan, the Chairman of the China Gold Association.

In them he talks about China gold reserves reaching 9816.3 tonnes at the end of 2014, the second largest in the world.  That is interesting because it sounds as though he is talking about China's official reserves, which are not transparent yet, although there are some expectations of an official update later this year.   He *might* be misusing the term reserves here to mean all the gold in the nation, but that does not seem quite right. 

And if these are in fact the official reserves, to whom would the Chinese be second?  The US would have less than this number, and the only entity I can think of that would have more would be to lump the European community together.    If anyone knows if he clarified that point in his discussion at the LBMA I would like to know.

Below that are two charts from a talk titled The World Needs New Reserve Currency from the perspective of global liquidity by Yao Yudong of the People’s Bank of China.

In them he discusses the potential role of gold and the renminbi in international liquidity and as a new form of world reserve currency.

Playing this kind of sea change is not the usual Wall Street task of getting tips from privileged cronies, and asymmetrical information in the equity markets, and playing against the rubes with the artificially manufactured market inefficiencies in which insiders excel.

What will China do?  And what will others do in response?

From a practical standpoint it is not possible to forecast how and when any changes may come, and exactly what form they may take.   This is a generational change in the character of international relationships and values. 

What is happening now has been happening since at least 1999.   If by this time a pundit or an analyst do not understand this, then they understand nothing.  And this is how it is with some.

In this sort of change, almost everyone will be taken by surprise when the time comes.  It is just that some will be in a better position for it than others.

But it is in human nature perhaps, that most will cling to what is transitory and base, while trampling what is of lasting value in the dust.  There are few things that we can surely know:  change will come, and in the end, neither money nor gold nor any vestige of earthly power and position will remain.    Only faith, hope, and love will endure, and the greatest of these is love.

Related:  COMEX:  Trading From Physical to Paper

Freedom of the Press Under Government Pressure In Japan

History continues to rhyme.

"The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan views with deep concern the recent statements at a meeting of ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmakers concerning freedom of the press. In particular, we are alarmed by comments that call for putting pressure on corporations to pull advertising from media and to 'crush' newspapers in Okinawa that don't hew to party and government policy views.

At the very heart of democracy is an open and fully functioning free press to serve as a check and balance on the government and to help inform debate about the issues of day. That is why freedom of the press is protected in Japan's Constitution. While the ruling party has taken action against those lawmakers involved and noted its commitment to freedom of the press, these types of comments and actions have become an extremely disturbing pattern.

Most notable recently are the calling in of broadcasters to a ruling party meeting to question their commentary and reporting and the letter to Tokyo-based networks calling for neutral coverage and reporting guidelines for the Lower House election campaign last December. In last week's instance, it is all the more alarming, considering that the lawmakers in question grew up under Japan's post-war democratic system, which includes a free press.

The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan, established in 1945 with a membership both from Japan and overseas, views freedom of the press and the free exchange of information as central to protecting the public from state overreach, maintaining the wheels of commerce and enhancing understanding between different cultures.

In that context, we urge the ruling party and the government to refrain from actions that can – or could appear to - affect the freedom of the press and to better educate its lawmakers and officials over the vital and Constitutionally guaranteed role that a free press provides in Japan."

James Simms
The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan
July 2, 2015