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Friday, August 30, 2013

A Super-Easy Quickie Quote Quiz relating to Iraq & Syria

Labor Day weekend is upon us so we'll keep this short...

Who said the following long quote back on Jan 23, 2003?

"Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation …

And now he is miscalculating America’s response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction… So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real..."

Choices are:

A)  Then President George W. Bush
B)  Then Secretary of War Donald Rumsfeld
C)  Then Vice-President Dick Cheney
D)  Then US Senator John Kerry (D)
Yep..  D

Who said the following quote on October 9, 2002?

"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force– if necessary– to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security.”

A)  Then Senator Robert Byrd (D)
B)  Then Senator Hillary Clinton (D)
C)  Then Senator John Kerry (D)
D)  Then Senator John McCain (R)
You're 2 for 2!!   Yep..  C

Who said the following in late 2003?

"He [Bush] misled every one of us... "

A)  Then Sec of War Colin Powell
B)  Then Sec of State Condoleeza Rice
C)  Then Senator Hillary Clinton (D)
D)  Then Senator John Kerry  (D)
Told you this Quiz was Super Easy!   Yep..   D

Last question..

Currently John Kerry is Secretary of State under Obama..  Thanks to his marriage to Teresa Heinz of the ketchup brand fortune he has a net worth of $194 million..

Today Kerry pledged that Obama’s response “will bear no resemblance to Afghanistan, Iraq or even Libya..  It will not involve any boots on the ground. It will not be open ended. And it will not assume responsibility for a civil war that is already well underway.”

Our response to that should be what?

A)  Laugh
B)  Cry
C)  Laugh and Cry
D)  Laugh and Cry and Throw Up...
This one is on your own...

See you all again on Tuesday!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

More Obama, al Qaida & Syria or 'Feeling like 2003 again'

Its Thursday.. brief check on the markets before we continue with things that matter..

We see its up 43 pts in late day trading..

Yawn..

The only reason its risen the past couple days is a lot of fund managers doing whatever they can in this current exceptionally-low trading volume market to end this month with their holdings as high as possible.

Nothing else...    So that's that..

OK.. What else?
Oh yes.. More Syria..  Seems over in lovely merry England their idiot leader David Cameron, if he was to have it his way, boots would be on the ground today..

Fortunately the people and most members of Parliament aren't so eager-beaver for a senseless war so they've essentially told him to cool his jets a little bit..  Something about waiting for weapons inspectors to report their findings FIRST, and THEN possibly invade..

God. it really feels like deja va

Wasn't it 10 years ago a Republican President was salivating, rather foaming at the mouth like some rabid raccoon to invade Iraq based on WMD that weren't there..  that Saddam gassed his people (way, way back in the early 1980s) and findings of yellow cake..
We have some yellow cake in our pantry.. it says Duncan Hines on the box.. with yummy pudding in the mix..

But we digressed.. cake does that..

Now we have a war-hungry Democrat..  Hmm, what is the point of elections anyways?

So, did Assad gas his people??  President Obama and Sec of Defense John Kerry sure think so.. they're pretty absolute and resolute on this..

Others aren't..
From AP news:

"The intelligence linking Syrian President Bashar Assad or his inner circle to an alleged chemical weapons attack is no "slam dunk," with questions remaining about who actually controls some of Syria's chemical weapons stores and doubts about whether Assad himself ordered the strike, U.S. intelligence officials say...

An intercept of Syrian military officials discussing the strike was among low-level staff, with no direct evidence tying the attack back to an Assad insider or even a senior Syrian commander, the officials said...

Another possibility that officials would hope to rule out: that stocks (gas canisters) had fallen out of the government's control and were deployed by rebels in a callous and calculated attempt to draw the West into the war."
Ugh.. this is sooo much feeling like 2003 again..

Except in 2003, we could buy a gallon of milk for $3.19 instead of $4.02 and a loaf of bread ran around $1.02...

And back in 2003, there was no such thing as 'twerking' and the world never heard of a Miley Cyrus..

Ron Paul had this to say on Fox News last night:

"Assad is not an idiot.. It's unlikely he would do this on purpose... Look how many lies were told to us about Saddam Hussein prior to that build-up (2003- Bush)... I think it's a false flag... There is a big risk that we are getting sucked in and the American people are against this war."
We'd have to agree..

We've said often that Obama is really Black Bush..

He is not a socialist or communist or any of the propaganda nonsense the Republicans spewed during two failure election cycles..

Obama is also not a true Democrat either..  You take his policies and his beliefs and go back in time to run him in Democrat primaries vs True Democrats like LBJ in the 60's and Carter in the 70's and there's no way in hell the President wins the support of the Dem base back then..
Wall Street corrupted the Democrat party starting with Slick Bill Clinton because after devastating losses to Reagan twice and Bush Sr, the party needed to tap into that vast hole of campaign contributions and kick backs from the Big Boys to compete nationally in elections..

So now both parties have no soul and with the exception of social issues like abortion and gay marriage are really no different..

Ask yourself this..  If any of the other major political players from 2008 and 2012 would have won and be current President, would things be different regarding this hungry push to war with Syria?
Hillary is no pacifist..  She's cut from the same cloth as Obama, Kerry and her husband who sent US troops into Bosnia..

McCain, the 2008 loser?  That bleeping cadaver...  He's one of the biggest war hawks currently.. Mitt Romney?? Please!

And that's what's sooo frustrating.. There's no one in the last 2 election cycles who could have won but didn't where you think. 'You know if he/she won, it'd be different now..'
That's a credit (being sarcastic) to the success of Wall Street to merge these two parties into a two-headed one-body monster..

You know folks.. As much as its sometimes not fun reading our dour posts, trust us, its really less fun having to write them...

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Obama, al Qaida & Syria... or "Oh S**t"

Its Wednesday.. Sorry we didn't post yesterday.. its just during the real dog-day drudgery of late August nothing That important is going on in the market..

Things don't really begin to pick up until after everyone is fully fattened up from Labor Day BBQs, then the really interesting twists and turns last from then until around Halloween...

So we're going to address more important things..

Growing up over the years, yours truly would read a lot of books, equally absorbed in fiction and non fiction.  In the fiction realm, I loved classic fiction (anything written during the Roaring 20's on back in time)   And who doesn't love historical fiction?  
I'd also read a type of book called 'Alternate History'.  These are books that supposed events or alliances that never took place and tried to follow a logical conclusion... The author Harry Turtledove writes extensively on this type of fiction...

'What would have happened if the Confederacy armed with AK-47s won the War for Southern Independence? (Book is called "Guns of the South")  'What would have happened if the Native Americans successfully defeated the US during the Indian Wars?'

Some works even blend science fiction..  Can't remember the specific novel title but one book by Turtledove supposes a scenario that during WWII the earth is attacked by space aliens which ultimately forced Hitler, Churchill and Roosevelt on the same side!!
Pretty insane concept yes??

Fighting along side an evil enemy of bloodthirsty, sociopathic monsters.. Sharing the same short-term goals while in reality providing military alliance with a people that want to really wipe you off the earth themselves...

Total childish science fiction lunacy, right?

Ha Ha...  Ho Ho..   Hee Hee....
Never happen for real...

From the Independent UK:

"If Barack Obama decides to attack the Syrian regime, he has ensured – for the very first time in history – that the United States will be on the same side as al-Qa’ida."

Oh shit..

Hmm..weren't they the same bastards who killed over 3,000 Americans on 9/11?   The supposed reason we invaded Afghanistan and then by extension Iraq costing thousands of lives and trillions of dollars?
And isn't the main excuse we have this authoritarian Patriot Act is to protect us from that enemy?  Um.. we mean our ally?    YUKK!!

"The men who destroyed so many thousands on 9/11 will then be fighting alongside the very nation whose innocents they so cruelly murdered almost exactly 12 years ago. Quite an achievement for Obama, Cameron (Britain's PM), Hollande (France's President) and the rest of the miniature warlords...

Maybe the Americans should ask al-Qa’ida for intelligence help – after all, this is the group with “boots on the ground”, something the Americans have no interest in doing...
There will be some ironies, of course. While the Americans drone al-Qa’ida to death in Yemen and Pakistan – along, of course, with the usual flock of civilians – they will be giving them, with the help of Messrs Cameron, Hollande and the other Little General-politicians, material assistance in Syria by hitting al-Qa’ida’s enemies. 

Indeed, you can bet your bottom dollar that the one target the Americans will not strike in Syria will be al-Qa’ida or the Nusra front."

Oh they must be mistaken... We wouldn't do that??
We wouldn't desecrate the memories of so many who died... So many who still grieve..  This must all be silly talk..  Yes, that's what it is.. silly talk..

Ha Ha... Ho Ho...  Hee Hee...

From AP:

"Former congressman Dennis Kucinich (D., Ohio) said that striking Syria would turn the United States military into “al-Qaeda’s air force.”
(He) lambasted the idea that Obama could act without congressional authorization, which he said would be a violation of the Constitution. He also warned that intervening in Syria would entangle the United States in another war in the Middle East and encourage Islamists who are fighting the forces of Syrian president Bashar Assad...

Kucinich also blasted the Obama administration for “rushing” into what he said could become a third world war, and he cast doubt on reports by rebels of governmental forces using chemical weapons. He declared that the use of chemical weapons in Syria was a “pretext.”

“The verdict is in before the facts have been gathered,” Kucinich said. “What does that tell you?” 
Oh shit...

Well.. um..  if this is going to happen..  At least we will have an Alliance of the Willing as respected as George W Bush's alliance when he entered Iraq with the support of nations such as Poland and Latvia...

From Wall Street Journal:

"The U.S. is moving toward possible military strikes against Syria without the public support of any major Arab ally, reflecting broad unease in the region about another Western military intervention.
The lack of public endorsement from Arab governments, even from Saudi Arabia and other countries that have helped arm, train and fund rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad leaves the West with little political cover regionally should any Western-led attack go badly...

In Cairo, Egypt Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy appeared to side against intervention, saying on Tuesday, "The solution for Syria must be diplomatic, not militaristic.""

Oh shit...

Same shit actually..
Lies to justify an invasion..  'weapons of mass destruction' BS..  Justifying a war because a leader killed his own people (half of Africa's leaders do this.. where's US presence there?  Oh yes.. we forgot.. 'Black Hawk Down' and all that...

Its all so G-D awful..  So powerless as intelligent citizens to stop it all..

We end today's posting with a quote...
"I don't oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war,"  --

Illinois State Senator Barack Obama, Oct 2002; six months before the Iraq invasion

Mr President, this is the wrong war at the wrong time and with the Worst 'ally'...  Wake up and recognize a dumb war when its plain in front of you...


Monday, August 26, 2013

How Deep Does It Go?? (Taxes, Debt, Fed & China)

As we start another week of repetitious & meaningless financial news, we see the market is up a tiny bit based on as an AP header puts it, "Data Ease Fed Concern"

Whewwie.. ~wipes brow

Now that we got the irrelevance out of the way, let's focus today's posting on a topic that matters..

Money and Income Tax..
People don't like paying taxes..  

The wealthy and middle class feel they pay too much.. Would much prefer 'flat' taxes where everyone including the poorest of the poor pay their supposed 'fair share'..

The working class and the poor know that the wealthy always come out ahead but never have the power to do anything to change the tax laws since no politician ever sincerely courts their vote..

And everyone bitches and complains about where their tax dollars go.. or are 'wasted'... Some hate all the money the government pays out to help the poor and indigent and unemployed..  Others hate the money spent on war..  
Some others may hate the fact we give billions away yearly in foreign aid...

The disgusting religious bigots will always latch themselves on to the fact we give taxpayer $$ annually to Israel and conveniently forget to mention we also send tax dollars to Afghanistan, Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, Philippines, South Africa, Ethiopia, Uganda and even the Palestinian Authority among others..

Hell, we even give foreign aid to Mexico who politically correct or not to say, have destroyed millions of good paying jobs in the last 20 years via NAFTA...

Yep..  Everyone feels some level of frustration as to where their precious money is going and how its being used..
But there's a little bit of 'good' news..   Well its not good at all.. More like sarcastically 'good'.. nonetheless...

In all likelihood your money is going to none of that.  If your tax dollars are going to anything, chances are 100% of it is going towards paying creditors...

Let us explain..

Last month the US government spent out $307 billion in total in expenditure to keep the nation running..  It did this while collecting $172 billion in tax revenue...
$307B - $172B = a deficit of $135 billion

So the US government Borrowed $135 billion from creditors to stay afloat last month..  And will do so this month.. and next..

The interest alone on the national bebt is $200 Billion

This is why we never have been able to pay down on the debt.. Merely try to pay down the deficit...
And here's the simple way to understand the two.. we've used this example before:

You have a credit card-- you owe $20K... that's your debt..  The monthly payments are $750.. that's your deficit.

Now let's focus on that national debt a moment.. 

Months have passed and it still hasn't been raised..  All that's happened is clever accounting by the Treasury to ensure we never went above the $16.7 trillion threshold while the politicians got to frolic around for their summer holidays..
At some point between mid-Oct and mid-Nov, something needs to be done or we will go Kaput..  No worries though.. our leaders are good at bluster and filibuster then at the last second they agree to some increase enough to kick the ball 9-12 months...

Ever wonder how its decided who gets paid if there was a financial crisis and we simply couldn't afford to pay out all our obligations?

This past May, the House of Representatives passed a law deciding who gets paid if the debt ceiling is not raised and what the pecking order was for meeting financial responsibilities...
In case you wonder who got the #1 spot, maybe this will help you out..   the House called the legislation the "Pay China First Act"

So China and all other creditors get paid First..  This includes the Fed.  They are a private entity remember that gets to use government money to lend and spend..  

That means, yes...  The Fed took taxpayer money (they created it out of thin air which everyone's on the hook for later, bought US Treasuries which is how we 'sell' our debt and raise running capital, then they get repaid with taxpayer money at a profit...

And in times of fiscal crisis, they have priority over every other bill to be repaid..
In addition this is why the US will never voluntarily default.. it would be sabotaging its own entity the Fed...

Assuming there's anything left, the next financial obligation to fulfill on the pecking order is Social Security which is then followed by Department upkeep and so on...

See how messy and confusing it gets..   It doesn't stop there..

China's economy is in steady decline.. Don't let mainstream and financial news fool you.. it is..  Its heavily in debt and suffering from among other things, the fact we're not buying its crap in as great a number as pre-recession..
So what happens if they collapse..

One idea being floated around astonishingly is the Federal Reserve... yes, our Fed recapitalize their government by buying up their debts..  

Not just any debts.. the US debts they're holding onto.. over $3 Trillion to this point..

Let us repeat this slowly because it is so astonishing and few outside inner circles are acknowledging this potential reality if China's economy truly crashes:
A private bank with a 'Federal' name whose sole function is to protect the banks and who already use taxpayer dollars to buy up US debt then profit off interest while never being responsible for paying the principle...

This entity would purchase a portion of the T-bills held by China.. maybe half a Trillion dollars; maybe more.. And thus US taxpayer money helps keep our economic and political enemy afloat while the Fed ultimately becomes our primary creditor...

The banks would truly be running the world if they aren't already..
They don't teach this in college folks..  This is all on the 'hush-hush'...

No, nothing Snowden-like.. No laws broken and no privacy infringed..  

We're just providing some true "inside baseball" as the expression goes and trying our best to do so in language and concepts that are easily understandable and relatively quick to grasp..

This is why we stand out at A&G and appreciate the growing support..

Friday, August 23, 2013

Government's War on Pro-Choice (we aren't speaking of Abortion)

The following posting has absolutely nothing to do with 'Pro-Choice' as relating to abortion.. The 'Choice' we're writing about is Far more Important because we're talking about basic day to day life choices...

Now lawmakers are worthless.   they truly are..

Really doesn't matter if Commander in Chief, Senator, Representative, Governor..

And the more localized they are... State Representative, Mayor, Councilperson, the bigger the little Nothings that they are;  Small people with a title and some power to impact the lives of those in in their communities adversely..
Politicians pretend they believe in freedom.. its not true..  They do everything possible to restrict it and to limit choice.   What they can not ban or remove, they try to tax...

Behaviors they can not alter via imprisonment or the fear of, they attempt through the power of persuasion via the purse (or wallet)

And so it becomes win-win... They successfully alter behaviors and daily life choices of some, and those who won't allow them, just end up paying more for everything and all politicians love money..

They love to tax..  Its really all they know how to do.
Tax anything that a human being enjoys.. anything that gives a person happiness... anything that makes life even infinitesimally better.

When its something supposedly 'bad' for us like alcohol or cigarettes, they call it 'sin taxes' which is a subtle way of saying government is standing up for morality and decency...

Really its just an excellent way to schtupp ('F' over) the poor and working class who statistically have been shown to enjoy alcohol and cigarettes at a higher percentage than those higher on the socio-economic ladder..
Funny how no one ever proposes a higher corporate tax rate for cigarette and alcohol facilities and distribution centers...  Nope-- the financial onus is always on the common person..

And when its something relatively unharmful to digest like soda, the little weasels do everything they can to tax that under the pretend concern about our health... Trying to curb obesity in adults and our precious children; our future..

Where's the tax increase on fast food restaurants..  Or consumption of cake and candy and ice creme and cookies?  Or butter or D milk or a thousand other fattening artery-clogging foods in your local supermarket??
Nope.. just gotta go after that soda..

And if these little worms can't tax you more under the guise of policing morality or faux concern for our well being, they'll do it for the precious environment..

We found this article the other day in Philly.com:
"An area lawmaker wants Pennsylvania shoppers to BYOB (bring your own bag) or pay a fee.

Sen. Daylin Leach (D., Montgomery) has introduced a bill aimed at reducing the volume of plastic bags in the trash by imposing a  2 cent fee on each new bag used by shoppers...

Leach said his bill - like those already enacted in Seattle, Los Angeles, and Washington - would encourage customers to shop with reusable bags while reducing landfill waste.

"Two cents is a small price to pay for a cleaner, more vibrant planet.." "
Pardon our french Sen Leach but go Fuck yourself!

Who the hell are you or any other local nothing politician to control how other people choose to bag their groceries!  If a specific store wishes to charge per bag, that's their prerogative..

And then watch how their foot traffic dramatically declines..

And if there was such a concern to help the environment then the counties or states should fit the bill and pay $$ necessary to  provide every citizen with 2-3 recycle bags instead of having us pay $1-2 each...
Or add tax to all plastic kitchen, leaf and contractor bags..

Or toughen their state's vehicle emission standards..

And if they want less plastic, then provide customers with a practical option; bring back paper bags like the good ole' days..  Remember them?   Then plastic was introduced as the savior to help the environment and paper was eliminated...

"Paper of Plastic Ma'am/Sir?"...  Bye Bye choice..
Nope.. the burden is on the individual..

And the real bitch of it is that people do blindly pay these taxes and more, and they keep taking and taking it..  Maybe some will write a strongly-word letter or threaten not to vote for politician "X"..

But ultimately they take it..

They allow their day to day lives; their basic happiness and joys to be altered out of principle or financial practicality or they allow their G-D local and state governments to rob them blind at every turn..
We wonder how many people sincerely make the effort to travel across county lines to shop if one county's sales tax is 6% and the next is 8%?

How many would take perhaps an hour's drive to travel from one state that charges 6% on purchases to one that charges nothing to buy big ticket items?

Or how many just go 'Ehhh.. not worth the trouble'?

If a person bought 10 plastic bags worth of food per week (including the probability of some double-bagging), that's a needless extra 20 cents paid per week...
52 weeks x $0.20 = $10.40

Some say... 'Ehh, what's $10.40??'

Well how would you feel if we stuck out hands into your wallet or purse and took out that amount?  If its an individual, its called Stealing... If its your government, its called a 'tax'...

Everyone is desperate for additional revenue streams..  Sure they'll all lie to your face with big smiley faces and tell you the economy is improving, jobs are growing, housing is booming..
Lie upon Lie to keep you docile and ignorant...

But governments are not desperate to get out of the red when in the black and rolling in the green..

We could write more fact but sometimes parody presents the most truth..

So we end with a quote from the 1980 film 'Airplane' and we hope the connection made isn't too confusing..

Stewardess Elaine:  "Ladies and gentleman, this is your stewardess speaking..   We regret any inconvenience the sudden cabin movement might have caused.  This is due to periodic air pockets we encountered. There's no reason to be alarmed and we hope you enjoy the rest of your flight.

By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?"