Monday, May 23, 2016

Gold World News Flash

Gold World News Flash

The Death of the Euro

Posted: 22 May 2016 09:30 PM PDT

by Martin Armstrong, Armstrong Economics:

At last year's WEC, we warned that the collapse of the euro was underway. We achieved the Yearly Bearish Reversal on the close of 2015, but we did so far below the number. We had been waiting for the rally to retest the 11600 level, which we finally achieved. The ECB monetary policy has been typical banker nonsense and has brought Europe closer to a major financial crash. Draghi has applied the unsupported quantity of money theory and assumes he will simply buy in the debt and the cash will miraculously be spent wildly by consumers. Trading volumes and the velocity of money have been falling in general since 1996-1998. The low to negative interest rate policy of the ECB has endangered pensions and ailing banks, and this is just now beginning to push pensions and banks over the edge. Draghai will not admit he is wrong, so he will blame everyone other than himself.

We are looking at a complete global financial meltdown of the world financial system, which we will focus on at this year's WEC. The construct of the common European currency is no longer sustainable. A completely new monetary system will be introduced as early as 2018. The fiscal mismanagement of government perpetually borrowing money they have no intention to pay back threatens a complete collapse of the world financial system.

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How the West Got Rich

Posted: 22 May 2016 06:30 PM PDT

from Gold and Liberty:

I find it funny (and terribly sad) that so many supposedly informed and educated people don't understand what a miracle capitalism (and the Western tradition, including English common law) truly is. Many of us, perhaps most of us wouldn't even be alive today if it was not for the concepts which spread from north western Europe, to North America, and then beyond. We live in amazing wealth. Even the poor in the West have amazing wealth relative to the poor throughout history and relative to parts of the world where commerce is stifled by statism, fear, ignorance, and war. (War is a product often of statism, fear, and ignorance.)

When everyday people are allowed to think and to pursue profit in peace the world progresses. Life gets better. Inventions happen. Commerce happens. Where liberty is embraced wealth is not far behind.

And yet, so many people do not understand this. It is a tragedy.

Of course there are many vested interests that do not want people to understand that liberty brings wealth. (And with it power for the middle classes.) These people are the people who hold the reins of the state or who resent the fact that progress is often uneven. (Often the same people in the West.) These people would prefer to keep the average person bridled. Better a plodding regimented existence in which the political class remains in relative power than a dynamic world where the status of the statist is sharply diminished.

Staists of various stripes are the true "conservatives." They want to tame the human spirit.They want to control the world and the people within it. Theirs is a philosophy which is fundamentally based on fear, both of the common person and of real progress. It is the capitalists which are the true revolutionaries when one zooms out on the great map of history.

I say viva liberty! Viva the bourgeoisie. Viva thought. Viva commerce. Viva capitalism. Viva peace. Viva progress. Viva the West.

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Donald J Trump for President - The Making of Trump Documentary

Posted: 22 May 2016 06:28 PM PDT

The Financial Armageddon Economic Collapse Blog tracks trends and forecasts , futurists , visionaries , free investigative journalists , researchers , Whistelblowers , truthers and many more

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Governments Create Monopolies And Cause Worker-Exploitation, Not Free-Markets

Posted: 22 May 2016 06:05 PM PDT

Authored by Richard M. Ebeling via The Future of Freedom Foundation,

The world is threatened with a renewed wave of anti-capitalism and anti-business sentiments and policies. Many who cheered the demise of Soviet communism in the early 1990s, presumed that this meant that, by default, the case for free markets and competitive enterprise had won in the battle of ideas. Over the last twenty-five years it has become clear that the same misguided arguments against free market capitalism constantly reemerge, like an ideological vampire waiting to rise from the intellectual grave and drain market freedom of its lifeblood by more government regulations and controls.

One of the most persistent of these misguided ideas is the belief that left on its own, competitive markets tend to bring about concentration of wealth, inequality of income, and “market power” to exploit workers and consumers of what justly should be theirs.

The most recent example of this is an article on, “Monopoly’s New Era,” by Joseph E. Stiglitz, the 2001 Nobel Prize winner in economics, which appeared on Project Syndicate website on May 13, 2016. Professor Stiglitz is one of those thinkers who seem to see a “market failure” at every turn and apparently has rarely found a government intervention he did not like.

Two Ways of Looking at the Market Process

He contrasts two differing views of the market economy. One view, an outgrowth of Adam Smith and those who followed in his intellectual footsteps over the last 250 years, argue that freedom, prosperity, and income equity are generally assured wherever the market is kept open and competitive, with minimal government impediments.

The other “school of thought” that he interestingly identifies with no one particular thinker of the past “takes as its starting point ‘power,’ including the ability to exercise monopoly control or, in labor markets, to assert authority over workers,” Stiglitz explains. “Scholars in this area have focused on what gives rise to power, how it is maintained and strengthened, and other features that may prevent markets from being competitive. Work on exploitation arising from asymmetries of information is an important example.”

Professor Stiglitz insists that this second approach has shown its insight and efficacy in the clear evidence of concentration of market control and income inequality in such sectors of the market such as finance and banking, cable television, health care, pharmaceuticals, agro-business, and a variety of others.

The truth and reality of this concentration of power and wealth conception of capitalism, Stiglitz argues, is also shown, historically, in labor markets, to the disadvantage of many “minority” groups. “Of course, historically, the oppression of large groups – slaves, women, and minorities of various types – are obvious instances where inequalities are the result of [market] power relationships,” he states.

His conclusion, therefore, should not be surprising. If competitive capitalism leads to it’s opposite – concentrated, monopoly capitalism – then government regulation and control is essential to preserve a free, prosperous, and “socially just” society. Or in the words with which Professor Stiglitz concludes his article: “But if markets are based on exploitation, the rationale for laissez?faire disappears. Indeed, in that case, the battle against entrenched power is not only a battle for democracy; it is also a battle for efficiency and shared prosperity.”

Karl Marx’s Theory of Worker Exploitation

The nineteenth century economist most famous for insisting that capitalism leads to concentration, monopoly and exploitation was, of course, Karl Marx. He is the leading thinker that Stiglitz avoids mentioning by name. Marx claimed to have unearthed “the laws of historical evolution” that by a necessity as irresistible as the physical laws of nature, place human history on a trajectory that transformed society from feudalism to capitalism and would have to culminate in the triumph of socialism and a post-scarcity world of communism.

Marx was insistent that businessmen are driven in the pursuit of profits to invest in laborsaving industrial machinery. This results in two consequences. First, in this competitive race for profits through industrialization, some private enterprisers would be driven to the wall and pushed out of business, with their companies bought up by those capitalists who had better weathered the market storm. As this process repeated itself, there would be fewer and fewer private enterprisers left standing, with the result of the private ownership of businesses remaining in fewer and fewer hands. Hence, market competition leads to the concentration of ownership and wealth in the hands of a diminishing number of enterprise owners, according to Marx.

Second, as machines replace workers, there are fewer and fewer jobs for all those needing employment to feed themselves and their families. The non-property owning workers – “the proletariat,” in Marxian jargon – are joined by the businessmen driven out of business due to that concentration of ownership and wealth.

Workers competing for a decreasing number of jobs bring about a lowering of wages and decreased living standards for the vast majority of the population. Thus, a growing material inequality emerges between most working members of society and the handful of property-owning wealthy capitalists, or as it has become fashionable to describe them nowadays, the “one percent.”

Finally, in the Marxian version of this theory, the workers rise up and overthrow the remaining handful of exploiting capitalists, and the new dawn of historical progressivism arrives: socialism, with the State owning, managing and centrally planning the resources and enterprises of the society in the name of “the people.”

Marx’s Errors and the Benefits from Classical Liberal Capitalism

Both economic theory and the actual events of economic history have shown the errors and absurdities in this and related theories over the last two hundred years. Rather than a bi-polar social world of a handful of “the rich” versus a human mass of “the poor,” industrial and financial capitalism saw the emergence of what has become known as “the middle class,” whose numbers came from the ranks of the poverty-ridden poor of the pre-capitalist era.

The political philosophy of classical liberalism that gained intellectual ground in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries called for the end to absolute monarchy and the establishment of representative, but constitutionally limited government. It espoused the cause of ending the governmental privileges and favors bestowed on a narrow group of special interest groups surrounding and serving the king, including legal monopolies that prevented market competition.

Classical liberalism called for the end to slavery, the emancipation of women, and an equality of individual rights for all in society to life, liberty, and honestly acquired property before an unbiased and impartial rule of law.

Domestic and international trade barriers were reduced or abolished, opening the field to virtually unrestricted free market competition. A smaller and far less intrusive government brought about a lowered tax burden on all in the society, leaving more of the earned wealth by all in the hands of the private individuals whose efforts and energies had produced it.

Respect and enforcement of private property rights; competitive markets open to all those with entrepreneurial visions of how to manufacture and sell more, better and less expensive goods and services to consumers as the peaceful and honest means of pursuing the earning of profits; freed labor markets giving all the opportunity to search out gainful employment wherever the most attractive terms of earning a living seemed to offer itself; and a growing financial sector provided the means for making possible the expensive industrial investments that created jobs and expanded the productive capabilities of society.

Capitalism Created a Prosperous Middle Class from the Poor

The last point is, perhaps, worth emphasizing. Through most of human history, the vast majority of people who found themselves able to somehow save anything out of their meager earnings were fortunate if they could hide away a few gold or silver coins as a form of accumulated wealth.

But the development of modern banking now made it possible for even those of meager material means to put aside their modest savings in a financial institution offering an interest return on their deposits. These financial institutions could now pool together large amounts of savings from many modest savers. They funneled these people’s savings out to entrepreneurs who could never have funded their dreams of industrial enterprises out of their own incomes.

Out of the profits earned by the successful entrepreneurial borrowers came the monetary means to pay back what had been borrowed plus the interest payments agreed to, to start up or to expand their private enterprises. This interest income earned by the banks both paid the interest owed to the depositors and increased the capital of the banks to develop their ability to lend to a growing number of enterprising borrowers.

The increasing field of created and expanded private enterprises was made possible through the savings of “the workers,” themselves, and who thereby earned interest on their individual savings accounts, and through the plowing back of retained earnings into those enterprises by successful businessmen widened the number of businesses looking for workers to fill the growing number of jobs in the marketplace.

At the same time, investment in more and better machines, tools and equipment in those industrial enterprises were increasing the productivity of each worker employment, helped to increase the wages worth paying each worker hired in conjunction with the increased demand of more employers competing for workers in their businesses.

Of course, wages for all types of labor did not all rise at the same time and to the same degree. But looking over the decades of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, competitive and relatively free markets demonstrated the lie to all the naysayers like Karl Marx who claimed that “the workers” were doomed to poverty, destitution, and despair.  Competitive capitalism did and has been raising increasing portions of mankind from wretched subsistence and starvation to unimaginable ease, comfort and convenience that even the richest and most successfully plundering kings and conquerors of the past could never have conceived.

Joseph Stiglitz and Asymmetric Information

Joseph Stiglitz, needless to say, is not a Marxist or a socialist, and it would be unfair to in anyway suggest that he is. His own variation on the injustice of capitalism and its potential for exploitation is partly based on his theory of “asymmetric information” and how it enables private enterprisers to take advantage of consumers and workers in society. Indeed, this theory helped earn him the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2001.

A core element in his theory is that individuals in the marketplace do not all possess the same type or degree of knowledge. Some people know things that others do not. And this “privileged” information can enable some to “exploit” others. For instance, the producer and marketer is likely to know far more about that product’s qualities, features and characteristics that he is offering on the market than most of the buyers possibly interested in purchasing it.

By withholding or not fully informing the potential buyer about all of the qualities, features and characteristics of his good, he may succeed in creating a false impression that makes the consumer have a greater demand for it and be willing to pay a higher price for it than would be the case if that consumer knew as much about the good as the seller knows.

Markets Integrate and Coordinate Decentralized Knowledge

There is no doubt that in a system of division of labor there is an accompanying division of knowledge, but this is a theme in theories of the market process long ago explained by economists in the “Austrian” tradition, especially Friedrich A. Hayek, who also received a Nobel Prize in Economics in 1974.

The Austrians have long emphasized that competition is a “discovery procedure” through which individuals find out things never known or imagined before. The peaceful rivalry of the marketplace creates the incentives for entrepreneurs to be unceasingly alert to profit opportunities to see possibilities that either others have missed or not thought of before. The unknown or barely perceived become seen and understood, and then taken advantage of in the form of new, better, and less expensive products offered to the consuming public.

The purpose of competitive markets and price systems is precisely to provide a way to integrate and coordinate the dispersed and decentralized knowledge in any society possessing a degree of complexity.

This same competitive market has also found ways to reduce and overcome the asymmetry of consumer versus seller knowledge concerning the qualities, features and characteristics of goods, as well, and thereby to reduce the potential and possibility of “exploiting” what the seller may know at the expense of the market buyers.

The Meaning of Search Goods and Judging the Quality of Products

In explaining how markets do this, economists sometimes distinguish between two types of goods offered and sold on the market: search goods and experience goods.

Search goods are those that can be examined and judged by the potential buyer before a purchase is made. For instance, suppose that a supermarket advertises that perfectly ripened bananas are available and on sale in their store. A consumer can enter the supermarket and fairly reasonably judge whether the quality of the good matches what has been promised in the advertising before buying it.

If examination shows that the bananas are either non-eatable green or over-ripened brown, the consumer can walk away without spending a penny on a product that has not met what was promised. By falsely or incorrectly advertising, or even unreasonably exaggerating in its advertising, the business runs the risk of not only losing that sale but the loss of its brand name reputation, threatening to see that consumer never return to that establishment again. Plus, that person can tell others what his “search” of the good came up with, potentially leading to those others not trusting that businesses advertising word without inspecting the good themselves.

This creates a self-interested incentive on the part of such sellers to practice “true in advertising,” or suffer the loss of some their regular customers upon whose repeat business their long-term profitability is dependent.

The Meaning of Experience Goods and Market Safeguards

Experience goods are those goods whose qualities, features and characteristics cannot really be fully known and appreciated without using the product in question for a period of time. Think of an automobile; you can go for a test drive, but your own best judgment of its safety, reliability and handling cannot be really known without driving the car in various weather and traffic conditions over a period of time. Or think of a bed mattress; you sit down and bounce on it, or stretch out and lay down on it in the furniture showroom, but you cannot really know if it will give you a comfortable and restful sleep every night until you’ve gone to bed on it for a period of time.

The same applies to many goods, such as household appliances, for instance. The competitive market’s response to this uncertain and imperfect knowledge on the part of potential buyers has been the seller and manufacture’s system of product warranties that enable the buyer to return the product over a period of time for his or her money back, or a replacement at no extra cost to the buyer.

It is, again, in the seller’s own self-interest to make sure that the product is what has been promised and is reliable in its working order and performance. Once more, the seller and manufacturer run the risk of losing their brand name reputation concerning quality and trustworthiness. Plus, if a warranty has to be fulfilled it is the manufacturer or seller who is forced to eat the cost of replacing the unit returned due to malfunction or failure to match buyer expectation, thus cutting into his own profit margin.

Market Uncertainty and Franchise Businesses

But what about those situations in which concern about repeat business or brand name reputation do not seem to be as present? For instance, suppose you are traveling on business or vacation and are passing through some town you are highly unlikely ever to see again.

You’re hungry for a meal or a place to stay for the night. How can you know about the quality of the meal in the local “Joe’s Greasy Spoon,” or the bedbug-free mattress in any of the rooms in the local “Bates Motel”?

The market has provided consumer information about the qualities, features and characteristics of such products and services to overcome this inescapable imperfect knowledge in the form of chain stores and franchises. You may never eat or sleep again in that particular town, but you will likely eat and sleep away from home somewhere at sometime again in the future.

The sight of the MacDonald’s “Golden Arches” or the sign for an IHOP (International House of Pancakes) anywhere, any place tells you the quality and variety of foods that you can have in any of their establishments, regardless of where its location in the United States or even the world. The same applies to seeing the sign for a Motel 6, or a Holiday Inn Express or an Embassy Suites, or a Hilton-family hotel.

You may never again go to that particular MacDonald’s or Holiday Inn, but if you travel you may very well eat or spend the night at some other chain franchise of that company. And that is the repeat business and brand name reputation that is important to the “mother company.” Thus, each chain store and franchise is required to meet standards of quality and variety that enables the consumer to have a high degree of confidence and reduced knowledge uncertainty of what he or she is getting when they enter any of these establishments regardless of where it may be located.

What makes this practice in the market consistently happen and successfully relied upon? Market competition and the self-interested profit motive.

“Perfect Competition” versus the Competitive Process

Professor Stiglitz sets up the straw man of what in economics is known as the “perfect competition” model. The presumption is that a market is only and truly “competitive” when it is filled with such a large number of sellers that each one is too small to influence the market price and in which each seller offers a product the quality of which is exactly the same ones sold by his competitors; and in which every buyer already knows all the same perfectly correct information as is known by all the sellers in those same markets.

Friedrich Hayek demonstrated the essential fallacies in this argument exacting 70 years ago when he delivered a lecture on “The Meaning of Competition” on May 20, 1946 at Princeton University. He explained that the very nature of a truly competitive market is precisely one in which rivals are attempting to improve the qualities of the products they offer to consumers and try to devise ways to make their products at lower costs precisely to be able to afford to offer them at lower prices to buyers to attract business way from their competitors. That is what makes market competition a dynamic, never-ending process of improved and less expensive goods and services available for the members of any society.

For economists like Joseph Stiglitz, trying to offer goods at prices different than your rivals or with qualities and characteristics differentiated from those sold by your competitors is a sign of “market failure,” of “imperfect” or “monopolistic” market practices.

These Americans Are Preparing For War With Their Own Government

Posted: 22 May 2016 04:54 PM PDT

During the Oregon standoff, where a group of US citizens calling themselves the Citizens for Constitutional Freedom, seized control of a federal wildlife refuge in protest of harsh sentences being given to members of a ranching family for allegedly allowing fires set on their property to spread on to federal land, Ron Paul posed a question: Is the event isolated, or a sign of things to come?

It is becoming increasingly apparent that the Oregon standoff was the latter.

As the Washington Post writes, there is a significant movement among US citizens that are demanding that the federal government adhere to the Constitution, and stop what they see as systematic abuse of land rights, gun rights, freedom of speech and other liberties.

One example of this movement is a group in Oregon that calls itself the Central Oregon Constitutional Guard. The group refers to themselves as patriots, and is made up of people from all walks of life. The organization describes itself as a "defensive unit against all enemies foreign and domestic", mainly because they believe the government is capable of unprovoked aggression against its own people.

Deep in the heart of a vast U.S. military training ground, surrounded by spent shotgun shells and juniper trees blasted to shreds, the Central Oregon Constitutional Guard was conducting its weekly firearms training.


"The intent is to be able to work together and defend ourselves if we need to," said Soper, 40, a building contractor who is an emerging leader in a growing national movement rooted in distrust of the federal government, one that increasingly finds itself in armed conflicts with authorities.


Those in the movement call themselves patriots, demanding that the federal government adhere to the Constitution and stop what they see as systematic abuse of land rights, gun rights, freedom of speech and other liberties.


Law enforcement officials call them dangerous, delusional and sometimes violent, and say that their numbers are growing amid a wave of anger at the government that has been gaining strength since 2008, a surge that coincided with the election of the first black U.S. president and a crippling economic recession.


Soper started his group, which consists of about 30 men, women and children from a handful of families, two years ago as a "defensive unit" against "all enemies foreign and domestic." Mainly, he's talking about the federal government, which he thinks is capable of unprovoked aggression against its own people.


The group's members are drywallers and flooring contractors, nurses and painters and high school students, who stockpile supplies, practice survival skills and "basic infantry" tactics, learn how to treat combat injuries, study the Constitution and train with their concealed handguns and combat-style rifles.


"It doesn't say in our Constitution that you can't stand up and defend yourself," Soper said. "We've let the government step over the line and rule us, and that was never the intent of this country."

Law enforcement officials and watchdog groups are branding such organizations as anti-government extremists of course, and even trying to marginalize the groups by giving them nicknames such as "Y'all Qaeda" and "Vanilla Isis", and the groups have even earned the designation of "domestic terrorists." Despite the attempts to downplay the groups, the number of like minded organizations has grown from 150 in 2008 to about 1,000 now, and estimates peg the number of supporters in the hundreds of thousands. The movement had been emboldened by the 2014 standoff at Cliven Bundy's ranch in Nevada, where federal agents faced off with hundreds of armed supporters of Bundy in a dispute over the rancher's refusal to pay fees to graze his cattle on federal land - the agents eventually stood down.

Law enforcement officials and the watchdog groups that track the self-styled "patriot" groups call them anti-government extremists, militias, armed militants or even domestic terrorists. Some opponents of the largely white and rural groups have made fun by calling them "Y'all Qaeda" or "Vanilla ISIS."


Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors extremism, said there were about 150 such groups in 2008 and about 1,000 now. Potok and other analysts, including law enforcement officials who track the groups, said their supporters number in the hundreds of thousands, counting people who signal their support in more passive ways, such as following the groups on social media. The Facebook page of the Oath Keepers, a group of former members of police forces and the military, for example, has more than 525,000 "likes."


President Obama's progressive policies and the tough economic times have inflamed anti-government anger, the same vein of rage into which Donald Trump has tapped during his Republican presidential campaign, said Potok and Mark Pitcavage, who works with the Anti-Defamation League and has monitored extremism for 20 years.


Much of the movement traces its roots to the deadly 1990s confrontations between civilians and federal agents at Ruby Ridge, Idaho, and in Waco, Tex., that resulted in the deaths of as many as 90. Timothy Mc­Veigh cited both events before he was executed for the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing that killed 168 people, and said he had deliberately chosen a building housing federal government agencies.


Now a "Second Wave" is spreading across the country, especially in the West, fueled by the Internet and social media. J.J. MacNab, an author and George Washington University researcher who specializes in extremism, said social media has allowed individuals or small groups such as Soper's to become far more influential than in the 1990s, when the groups would spread their message through meetings at local diners and via faxes.


The movement received a huge boost from the 2014 standoff at Cliven Bundy's ranch in Nevada, where federal agents and hundreds of armed supporters of Bundy faced off in a dispute over the rancher's refusal to pay fees to graze his cattle on federal land.


When federal agents backed down rather than risk a bloody clash, Bundy's supporters claimed victory and were emboldened to stage similar armed face-offs last year at gold mines in Oregon and Montana.

The latest confrontation that has taken place was in Burns, Oregon, where armed occupiers, led by Cliven Bundy's sons, took over the headquarters building of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Ultimately, the standoff ended with multiple arrests, and even the death of the group spokesman Robert "LaVoy" Finicum, who was shot by the FBI after an incident at a roadblock in the area. BJ Soper, founder of the Central Oregon Constitutional Guard says he tries to be the calming voice of the growing movement, knowing there are many hot heads that fall within its ranks; a voice clearly much needed. After the standoff at the wildlife refuge, two members splintered off and went on to kill two police officers in Las Vegas, leaving a note saying "This is the beginning of the revolution."

In January, dozens of armed occupiers, led by Bundy's sons Ammon and Ryan, took over the headquarters buildings of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near rural Burns, Ore., an action that resulted in the death of Robert "LaVoy" Finicum, an occupier who was shot by state troopers.


Soper has been in the middle of all of it. He says he has tried to be a more moderate voice in a movement best known for its hotheads. He spent a month living in his RV at Burns, trying to talk the occupiers into standing down.

Two days after Soper's last visit to the refuge, Finicum was killed in an operation in which the Bundys were arrested. An independent local investigation concluded that the shooting was justified, although the U.S. Justice Department is investigating several FBI agents for possible misconduct. Soper considers Finicum's death "murder."


That kind of talk is "a big deal," said Stephanie Douglas, who retired in 2013 as the FBI's top official overseeing foreign and domestic counterterrorism programs. "Free speech doesn't make you a terrorist just because you disagree with the government. But if you start espousing violence and radicalizing your own people toward a violent act, the federal government is going to take notice."


Shortly after the Bundy ranch confrontation, two of Bundy's supporters who had been at the ranch, Jerad and Amanda Miller, killed two police officers and a civilian and also died in a Las Vegas shooting rampage. Police said the couple left a note on the body of one the officers they had shot point-blank.


It said: "This is the beginning of the revolution."


BJ Soper has described his reasons to to start the Central Oregon Constitutional Guard as being simply that he used to be oblivious to everything that was going on, but after the Bundy Ranch incident, he decided to get more involved and make a difference. Soper's understandable skepticism about the government gets rather intense, taking views quite outside the norm, entertaining that the government had a hand in 9/11, that the government is mandating vaccines that cause autism, and that the United Nations wants to reduce global population through a program called Agenda 21. All of which spurred Soper's desire to create the group, and prepare his family for any possible scenario through weapons training and emergency food storage.

"I lived like 90 percent of Americans, oblivious to everything that was going on, from the time I was 18 until the Bundy Ranch happened," he said. "I just said, 'I can't sit back and do nothing. I've got to get involved.' I feel responsible for where we're at, because I've done nothing my entire life."

His response was to start his Central Oregon Constitutional Guard, which he said was partly to protect against the government, but partly a way to get back to a simpler America.


"As a kid, life was easy," he says on the group's website. "No worries. Very little threats. I would ride my bike around all over the neighborhood for hours on end. Play with friends and show back up for dinner without worry."


Critics say such talk is naive nostalgia for a 1950s America that wasn't ever really such a homespun paradise in the first place. And they say the groups that have sprung up in response are far more dangerous than Soper and others want to make them seem.


"The idea that he needs to face down the government with weapons I think is really, really wrong," Potok said. "They don't really say that, but I think that is what is right under the surface."


Soper's research also led him to some of the Internet's favorite conspiracy theories, including a purported U.N. plot to impose "One World Government." And Soper, like most in the patriot movement, became a believer.


He suspects that the United Nations, through a program called Agenda 21, wants to reduce the global population from 7 billion to fewer than 1 billion. He said the federal government may be promoting abortions overseas as part of that plot, and also may be deliberately mandating childhood vaccines designed to cause autism because autistic adults are less likely to have children.


Soper said he could not rule out the possibility that the U.S. government was behind the 9/11 attacks. He suspects that the government and the "medical community" have had a cancer cure for years but won't release it because cancer treatment is too profitable for pharmaceutical companies.


"I'm not saying that's the case," he said, "but I like to look at all avenues."


Soper knows those ideas sound crazy to many people, but, he said with a laugh, "It shows I just don't trust my government."

Alex McNeely, a 25 year old drywaller found the patriot group online, and joined the group to feel that he was helping defend the country. And in a textbook example of how words can cause many to take action, echoed the sentiment of many conservative pundits who claim Obama is a socialist who is trying to fundamentally change America. The group is conservative, and generally supports Trump, although anyone other than Hillary would suffice. One of the men indicted by the Bundy ranch case is Gerald DeLemus, who was New Hampshire co-chair of Veterans for Trump and was named by the Trump campaign as a New Hampshire alternate delegate to the Republican National Convention In Cleveland.

"There's this D.C. mentality that if you stand up for your rights, you're dangerous and anti-government," said McNeely, who has an AK-47 assault rifle tattooed on his forearm. "But if I'm denied my rights, what else can I do? Am I just going to stand there and take it, or am I going to do something?"


In the Constitutional Guard, McNeely said, "I feel what we do is stand up for people who don't have the means to stand up for themselves. I have an overwhelming desire to help people."


McNeely considered joining the military when he graduated from high school, but he turned 18 the month Obama was elected in 2008, and, because of Obama's "socialist" policies, "I wasn't going to accept him as my commander in chief."


"I don't like that he wants to fundamentally change America," McNeely said.


The group members are conservatives, do not like former secretary of state Hillary Clinton and generally support Donald Trump. Soper said he would prefer just about anyone over Clinton but would not cast a vote for president this year. He said he thinks casting his vote is "a waste of time" because Oregon's politics are dominated by Democrats.

Everyone in the group keeps 30 days worth of food and emergency supplies on hand, and group members learn gardening and raising livestock. They camp, and learn survival tactics, including how to fashion a shelter, find food and water, and make a fire. The group is preparing for anything, and that includes economic collapse.

"I don't know that it's all that far-fetched that we have an economic collapse," he said. "The dollar is a pretty scary investment anymore. China's buying up all the gold. When people get hungry and thirsty and can't feed themselves, they get desperate."

Soper reiterates every chance that he gets that he does not want violence, however in his reality, he believes that if common sense doesn't get restored in the government, people will get hurt.

"The last thing I want is violence" Soper said. "But I hope they see that if we continue down this path, we're going to have more bloodshed in this country."

As he writes his sheriff upon learning of the news that more people had been arrested in connection with the 2014 standoff at the Bundy Ranch, Soper airs his concerns, and ends the letter in a very dramatic fashion:

"People are being detained without due process" he said. "These are not our American values."


"I pray we find some sense of it again, otherwise a very dark future awaits us, and it is not very far down the road." Sheriff, he said, "People are going to die."


As America becomes even more fragmented, more fractured, and more polarized, and, as both the GOP and Democratic primaries have shown, with ever more people calling for true change to take place, the establishment may be under pressure to finally act for change, even if the change is at first, very painful - something 8 years of relentless central bank intervention has desperately tried to prevent. If the government chooses not to act, a violent future may await America as the people themselves rise up once more to recreate what was once the freest and most admired nation on earth.

The Three Step Plan to Destroy America and Implement the New World Order

Posted: 22 May 2016 04:30 PM PDT

by Dave Hodges, The Common Sense Show:

It has long been my position that if the criminal elite were successful in destroying America, as their last obstacle to world domination, they would be forced to follow a chronological three step plan:

1) Begin the formation of a police state which would destroy the foundational values of the country (e.g. Constitutional protections, any semblance of Christian values, and the erosion moral decency where the perverse becomes the new normal). This would also be assisted by the overwhelming shift in population demographics with people foreign to American ways and this has, and is, being achieved by illegal immigration which our political leaders support.

2) Forge a false-flag event(s) so volatile and horrific, that the implementation of a complete and authoritarian police state would follow. The police state will be so all-encompassing that George Orwell would be jealous. This is certainly well underway with the abuses of the BLM and EPA being perpetrated against farmers. The constant spying through the NSA is certainly a bold move in that direction. Intellistreets and the intrusiveness of Obamacare represent large steps forward toward a "Police State America". In this second phase, the will of the people must be destroyed. All resistance must be crushed. When these goals are complete a President Hillary Clinton will help to usher in World War III

3) Out of order comes chaos. World War III will usher the prime directive of the criminal elite, namely, depopulation. World War III will kill billions.

The Report Card On Global Domination by the Criminal Elite

The following is a report card, based upon a 24 hour cycle of news. This three step play is ubiquitous and is in our faces every day of our lives. There is very little that is secret about what is coming. The criminal elite are hiding thi information in plain sight. They do not care if you know because they know the average person is not paying attention and even if you did figure it out, you have little recourse at this late date except to call upon Donal Trump or God to help you. If you are confused in your choice, choose the latter.

Here are examples from a 24 news cycle on how thorough the plan, and how close to completion the criminal elite are in their plans to bring humanity to their knees while they wipe out 90% of us.

Phase One: The Destruction of Fundamental Values

In a very brief amount of time, Target allows men into women's restrooms. New York City requires business owners what each customer wants to be referred with regard to the transgender issue. Schools are told by Obama that they will implement transgender bathrooms in the ultimate propagandizing of the young. This is just a small cross-section of this approach to destroying fundamental values in the United States. And of course, there is Schaeffer Cox as he sits in a FEMA prison for 27 years, with no rights, and he was prosecuted for the actions of FBI infiltrators who had penetrated his Second Amendment organization. And of course, the financial raping of America occurs every day through the illegitimate spending of our tax money on illegal immigrants.

Phase Two: The False Flag Uncovered

On has to no further than the following news release by Yahoo Finance as they are bascially telling you that a financial reset is coming soon to a bank near you. Please remember that Yahoo Finance is indeed a product of the criminal elite.

"Yahoo Finance doing advising people to get into gold?

It used to be that when I spoke about gold, the folks that listened would look at me as if I were speaking in some ancient foreign language that nobody could understand. Lately, as I stand at my spot on trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange, willing to talk the financial markets or baseball with anyone who's also willing—more and more am I asked about gold. Several times a week in fact.

In case you missed it, when the World Gold Council released its Q1 data, total demand for gold was up 21% year-over-year, largely due to demand for investment purposes. There were yearly declines in demand from Q1 2015 to Q1 2016 for jewelry, technology purposes, and even purchases made by central banks. Demand for investment purposes was up 122% year-over-year. That says something…. It says that I am not alone in my assertion that gold should be obtained in the face of the coming reset."

This is not to say that we will not see some manufactured terrorism or a cyber attack upon the grid, but economic collapse now stands front and center as the precipitating agent for using a false flag to lock down America.

Phase Three: World War III

Here is a snippet of news releases in 24 hour cycle which clearly represent the World's march to WW III.

Alastair Crooke, a former MI-6 agent stated that the Obama administration is acting to weaken Putin and Lavrov's hand, and therefore strengthening the hand of those in Russia calling for a full mobilization for war.

Read More @

Are FTSE 100 investors ready for the return of the US dollar?

Posted: 22 May 2016 04:01 PM PDT

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Current Economic Collapse News Brief – Episode 977

Posted: 22 May 2016 04:00 PM PDT

Ben Fulford and David Wilcock on Russian Cabal Defeat is Looming

Posted: 22 May 2016 01:28 PM PDT

Ben Fulford and David Wilcock on Russian Cabal Defeat is Looming The Financial Armageddon Economic Collapse Blog tracks trends and forecasts , futurists , visionaries , free investigative journalists , researchers , Whistelblowers , truthers and many more

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3 Prophetic Volcanos Erupt This Weekend

Posted: 22 May 2016 12:29 PM PDT

 3 Prophetic Volcanos erupted this weekend and 3 to Mountains "Shaking In Northwestern America The Financial Armageddon Economic Collapse Blog tracks trends and forecasts , futurists , visionaries , free investigative journalists , researchers , Whistelblowers , truthers and many more

[[ This is a content summary only. Visit or for full links, other content, and more! ]]

Kinross' Paul Rollinson and after the gold rush

Posted: 22 May 2016 09:35 AM PDT

By James Wilson
Financial Times, London
Monday, May 23, 2016

When Paul Rollinson took over as chief executive of Kinross Gold four years ago the end was in sight for the biggest gold boom in history -- and for some of the people who were part of it.

After rising 500 per cent in a decade, the market price of the precious metal had peaked. In the rush to exploit the boom, mining investments and costs had spun out of control.

Investors in gold miners such as Kinross, which had lavished $11bn on acquisitions in six years and was already writing off part of that spending, were in revolt. Tye Burt, Mr Rollinson's predecessor, was among a score of mining chief executives to lose their jobs.

... Dispatch continues below ...


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It was "the end of a champagne era", recalls Mr Rollinson. "Everything was going up, up, up, forever and ever -- and then I got the back half of the mountain, where it has been down, down, down.

"This has been the challenge -- running a business as you transition from one phase of the market into another," he says on a visit to London. After a long trip to see investors in Asia, he is on his way to a gold mining conference in Switzerland. It is a gruelling schedule but he is looking forward to dinner that evening with one of his daughters, who works in the UK capital.

Negotiating the descent has not been easy for Mr Rollinson. In his first week in the job he halted plans for the expansion of its Tasiast mine in Mauritania, the flagship development for Kinross. The project was the centrepiece of a $7.1bn acquisition of Red Back Mining in 2010, Kinross's largest deal.

After ensuing writedowns on Tasiast, the Canadian company was the first large gold miner to scrap its dividend: "That is one where you send the release out and want to crawl under your desk," recalls Mr Rollinson in his laconic drawl.

Another project in Ecuador, Fruta del Norte, was sold for much less than it had cost during the boom years; and when tension flared between Russia and the west over Ukraine, Kinross, the largest foreign investor in Russian mining, faced criticism over its strategy.

Mr Rollinson also had to fight to prove that his appointment was the change that Kinross needed.

As the miner's previous head of corporate development, and before that as an investment banker who advised the company on some deals, Mr Rollinson admits he might have seemed to investors like more of the same as they had had before. He had been involved in some of the decisions investors had criticised. Mr Burt was also previously a banker.

"On paper you might go, 'Here's another banker ... here we go again'," he says. "We just got our heads down."

Four years on, his transition from banker to miner seems to suit both Mr Rollinson and Kinross. The miner's shares have doubled in the past 12 months. In March, Mr Rollinson was at last able to unveil a definitive plan to develop Tasiast at a much lower cost.

And his stewarding of spending meant Kinross had the cash to snap up assets in the US from Barrick Gold, its larger rival, which helpfully reduced Kinross's overall exposure to higher-risk countries.

Not least, Mr Rollinson, who looks the image of a tough miner but is softly spoken, is at last having some luck with the gold price, which has risen since the start of 2016. "It is hard to believe we would all be high-fiving when gold got back to $1,200 an ounce but we certainly are, and it seems to be holding in there pretty firmly," he says.

Mr Rollinson has dual nationality: He was born in the UK but grew up in Canada, where his father worked in mining. He studied geology, and started his working life in Canada's wide open spaces. "I was living in the wilderness all year round in a tent and I had some amazing experiences. It was my love of the outdoors that got me into this in the first place."

But a key to his career may have been the finance classes he took while completing a postgraduate degree in mining engineering. On graduating he went into mining banking and a career in a succession of investment banks. He advised Kinross before Mr Burt asked him to join the miner in 2008.

"My intention was always to get back into mining ... that is ultimately where my passion is," Mr Rollinson says.

What has helped his time at Kinross, he says, is that while he came from banking he also had plenty of technical mining knowledge. As he puts it: "I can speak a few languages -- geology, mining, corporate finance." Many miners lost sight of some mining basics, such as the importance of asset quality, during the go-go years: Mr Rollinson says he has brought 70 technical staff into Kinross, adding that much of their job is to argue why projects should not be done, rather than rush them through as fast as possible.

"I call them The Terminators," he says. "Every time you look at an opportunity -- it is like an ice cube. The minute those guys get hold of it, it starts melting. It is 'Forget it -- take that out -- that's aggressive' ... those are the guys that matter."

Stopping things has been a big feature of Kinross under Mr Rollinson. He describes the original project to expand Tasiast as like a plan for a house that was increasingly difficult to afford to build: today's is a smaller and cheaper project. "Instead of building new, we are renovating," Mr Rollinson says.

The original project could have hurt the company, he says. "What scared me was [that] we would get it half built in that overheated environment, over budget, and we might put ourselves in some jeopardy." Not to put so much at risk was, he says, "a pretty important lesson for me".

Another lesson has been experience of Kinross in Russia, bringing Mr Rollinson reluctantly into the political arena. At the height of tension with Moscow over Ukraine in 2014, Canada's government tried to persuade business leaders, including Mr Rollinson, not to attend an economic forum in St Petersburg.

"That was tough but we had to say -- we have employees, we have stakeholders, we have shareholders, we don't want to get involved in politics, and with respect we intend to participate. And we did," says Mr Rollinson.

Kinross has a seat on Russia's Foreign Investment Advisory Council, alongside the likes of BP and Siemens. "We have been in Russia for more than 20 years ... we are 98 per cent Russian. We are employing and training Russians," says Mr Rollinson, while noting that Kinross's mines, in Russia's far east, are geographically closer to Toronto than they are to Moscow.

Reluctantly drawn into talking about Kinross's past deals, and his role in them, Mr Rollinson says many have worked out well and points out that the most criticised, the Red Back Mining acquisition, was voted through by shareholders.

Now he prefers to look forward. Kinross last year acquired a US mine in Nevada from Barrick, the world's largest gold producer by volume, and the gleam in Mr Rollinson's eye suggests he believes he has got a good deal.

Together with the resolution of the saga over Tasiast's expansion, he says Kinross now has "good momentum."

"People are feeling good about the business. It's been a slog, I can't tell you it hasn't -- it's been hard work. But people are seeing the fruits of their labour ... what we have to do is keep our focus and keep working hard."

* * *

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Blood on Their Hands: Europe's Immigration Lie

Posted: 22 May 2016 08:53 AM PDT

When it comes to immigration and open borders, Europe has been dancing with the devil for years. But now the bill has come due in the form of crime, chaos and terrorism. CBN's Dale Hurd reports on how European leaders deceived their own people. The Financial Armageddon Economic Collapse...

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Gold Bull-Phase I Continues to Confound (The Trek to “Known Values”)

Posted: 22 May 2016 07:15 AM PDT

Since January 20th the precious metal stocks have been in an upward impulse. I have classified this impulse as phase I of a new bull market. My essay “The three phases of a bull market” located on this site explains this in further detail. In short, phase I is the move off bear market lows to “known Values”. Just prior to this move stocks were left on the bargain table and farsighted, wise investors picked them up from discouraged and distressed sellers. I have described this impulse move toward known values as analogous to a beach ball held under water then released.

Breaking News And Best Of The Web — May 23

Posted: 19 May 2016 06:34 PM PDT

Doug Noland on why the Fed probably can’t raise rates in June — or ever. Global stocks recover. Gold and silver stabilize. US angers China with huge steel tariff. Solar flares are, believe it or not, another good reason to own gold and silver. Brexit, The Movie, crushes the European project and a former European […]

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