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How Buying the Local Post Office Will Help My Family Farm and Small Town Survive

I never thought farming would mean owning a post office. But looking at my community and our need to define ourselves as a place, that seems to be our family farm's next job.
Categories: Economics

ALERT: Markets Are Highly Unstable, China Is Crashing

Chris Martenson - June 29, 2015 - 13:41

The multiple global bubbles in search of a pin may have found one in Greece.  The carnage there is clearly accelerating, and the central planners are straining mightily to get control back.

While the odds favor them doing so, the risk is very high that they may not and that we are now in the 'descent' phase that follows the inevitable ending of the 'virtuous' phase (if we can call it that) of the money-printing experiment.

 

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Categories: Economics

Torino Innovators Build a Smart Apartment on Open-Source Ideals

Shareable Magazine - June 29, 2015 - 12:47

Casa Jasmina is a combination laboratory and gallery highlighting open source, Internet-of-Things innovations from Torino-area makers. (Casa Jasmina)

Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 6/29 - World Defenseless Against Next Financial Crisis, The Politics Of Oil

Chris Martenson - June 29, 2015 - 07:56
  • The world is defenceless against the next financial crisis, warns BIS
  • Greece in shock as banks shut after snap referendum call
  • The Wait-for-Google-to-Do-It Strategy
  • Land of 1,000 Landfills
  • The Politics of Oil
  • New manufacturing approach slices lithium-ion battery cost in half
  • Nature Provides Novel Solution To Energy Storage Problem
  • The solidarity fridge: Spanish town's cool way to cut food waste

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Categories: Economics

New Social Media Platform Dubbed “The People’s Site” by Anonymous

Shareable Magazine - June 29, 2015 - 07:18

Article cross-posted from the Anti-Media blog. Written by Claire Bernish.

Categories: Economics

Rope Making 101

Chris Martenson - June 29, 2015 - 07:03

Knowing how to make rope is a great skill to have in an emergency. You might be able to find weaker materials like twine, string, yarn, plant fibers or even plastic bags but they won’t be able to hold anything strong until they are bound together as rope.

Making rope is a great skill to know and very easy to do. Below, we’ve listed some instructions on how you can make a simple rope design. Keep in mind that there are multiple ways to make a rope and many materials you can use.

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Categories: Economics

Joel Salatin: The Pursuit Of Food Freedom

Chris Martenson - June 28, 2015 - 09:54

Sustainable farming activist Joel Salatin and author of Everything I Want To Do Is Illegal returns this week to talk about the importance of a basic human right: to eat what we believe is best for us.

In past podcasts, he's described the challenges facing farmers who want to grow organically. This week, he sheds light on the additional challenges consumers face in getting access to quality produce and meats.

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Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 6/28 - Chinese Stock Bubble Bursts, Greece To Shut Banks To Avert Collapse

Chris Martenson - June 28, 2015 - 05:17
  • The Chinese Stock Bubble Bursts: Any Questions? 
  • Panic Among Hedge Fund Investors in Greece
  • Explaining the Greek Debt Crisis and What It Means for the Eurozone
  • Greece Shuts Banks to Avert Collapse After ECB Freezes Support
  • Three attacks deepen fears about Islamic State’s global reach
  • Changes large and small causing recyclers to struggle
  • Don’t Worry So Much About Whether Your Food is ‘Processed’
  • How breaking a glacier makes the Earth quake

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Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 6/27 - Police Warily Learn to De-escalate, A New Alternative To Antibiotics?

Chris Martenson - June 27, 2015 - 08:21
  • Long Taught to Use Force, Police Warily Learn to De-escalate
  • Nature Rebounds
  • Paul Craig Roberts: Bond Bubble in Big Trouble 
  • Greece's Future in Balance as Creditors Reject Aid Extension
  • China Cuts Interest Rates After Market Plunge
  • US overtakes Russia as top oil and gas producer, report says
  • A New Alternative To Antibiotics?

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Categories: Economics

7 Ways To Use Amazing Baking Soda In The Garden

Chris Martenson - June 26, 2015 - 17:32

Some interesting uses for baking soda in the garden. Time to check on your stash of this inexpensive prep and make sure you have plenty on hand.

http://bestplants.com/7-ways-to-use-amazing-baking-soda-in-the-garden/

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Categories: Economics

7 Ways To Use Amazing Baking Soda In The Garden

Chris Martenson - June 26, 2015 - 17:26

Some interesting uses for baking soda in the garden. Time to check on your stash of this inexpensive prep and make sure you have plenty on hand.

http://bestplants.com/7-ways-to-use-amazing-baking-soda-in-the-garden/

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Categories: Economics

The Global Credit Market Is Now A Lit Powderkeg

Chris Martenson - June 26, 2015 - 09:53

Although the Street seems to agonize over equity valuations and recent price volatility, as I see it the real issue is the global bond market. Why?

Globally, the value of outstanding credit instruments is three times the total value of publicly traded equities. Just which do you imagine is more important to institutional investors?

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Categories: Economics

What Awaits Us In The Future Of Higher Interest Rates

Chris Martenson - June 26, 2015 - 09:53
Executive Summary
  • Expect a bond market bloodbath as rates rise
  • Municipal, corporate and sovereign defaults will soon follow
  • Liquidity suffers as necessary goods prices rise, but securities prices fall
  • The new, nuclear risk of a derivatives market collapse

If you have not yet read Part 1: The Global Credit Market Is Now A Lit Powderkeg available free to all readers, please click here to read it first.

You may remember that what caused then Fed Chairman Paul Volcker to drive interest rates up in the late 1970’s was embedded inflationary expectations on the part of investors and the public at large. Volcker needed to break that inflationary mindset. Once inflationary expectations take hold in any system, they are very hard to reverse.

A huge advantage for Central Bankers being able to “print money” in very large magnitude in the current cycle has been that inflationary expectations have remained subdued. In fact, consumer prices as measured by government statistics (CPI) have been very low in recent years.

When Central Bankers started to print money, many were worried this currency debasement would lead to rampant inflation. Again, that has not happened for a very specific reason. For the heightened levels of inflation to sustainably take hold, wage inflation must be present. I've studied historical inflationary cycles and have not been surprised at outcomes in the current cycle in the least, as in the current cycle, continued labor market pressures have resulted in the lowest wage growth of any cycle in recent memory. But is this about to change at the margin?

The chart below shows us...

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Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 6/26 - World's Aquifers Losing Repleneshment Race, U.S. Oil Glut An EIA Invention?

Chris Martenson - June 26, 2015 - 08:03
  • Millennials now outnumber Boomers, Census Bureau says
  • Fair Housing Won’t Be Enough
  • Middle-Class Black Families, in Low-Income Neighborhoods
  • The Advantages of a Second Passport
  • Who Owns The Dead?
  • California Set to Mandate Childhood Vaccines Amid Intense Fight
  • U.S. Oil Glut An EIA Invention?
  • World’s Aquifers Losing Replenishment Race, Researchers Say

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Categories: Economics

TiSA, another secret treaty to obliterate democratic government

Beyond Money - June 26, 2015 - 04:47

We the people continue to be disempowered as our governments cede ever more control to global banking and corporate elites. TiSA and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) are the latest and boldest moves in that direction.

The big questions are “How far will we the people allow this process to go before we rebel, what can be done to reverse the damage, and when will it be too late to restore democracy?” Here below is a summary of the situation in so far as TiSA is concerned. –t.h.g.

Wikileaks throws light on an ultra-secret treaty

Marco A. Gandásegui, Jr.* – ALAI

Panama and another fifty countries are engaged in the negotiation of a secret treaty that will put an end to what little is left of democracy and free trade at a world level. North American and European officials advise their counterparts. Everything indicates that this operation is being developed regardless of the laws of the countries involved. At present, the US Congress is legislating to create a juridical framework for the new body. In the case of Panama and the majority of the countries that are taking part in these negotiations, there is no information as to what is being legislated.

Wikileaks is revealing, through a world-wide journalistic network at their disposition, the content of these clandestine negotiations among some 50 governments to establish a neo-liberal planetary alliance, the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA). The agreement on the interchange of services is not only being negotiated in the most absolute secrecy, but also intends to maintain its secrecy during the first five years of its operation.

The level of concealment of the TiSA – which covers telecommunications, electronic commerce and financial services, as well as insurance and transportation – is superior to that of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement between Washington and their Asian associates. Wikileaks revealed secret documents that expose the construction of a set of norms and rules designed to evade state regulations on the global market.

If the treaty is not to be known for years, the governments that implement it will not need to be accountable. According to well-informed sources, the fraudulent intention of these clandestine negotiations is obvious in view of its unashamed violation of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.

Up to now, the Latin American governments involved in the secret negotiations of TiSA include Panama, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Paraguay and Peru. The texts of the secret negotiation of TiSA divulged by Wikileaks show that what is involved is the elimination of all control over financial services. It was precisely the derivatives or CDS (credit default swaps) – nothing less than bets on possible bankruptcies – that generated the stock market bubble that exploded in 2007-2008 and put an end to the capitalist financial system as we have known it. The collapse obliged Washington to inject trillions of dollars from public funds into the biggest banks to avoid bankruptcies.

Wikileaks had access to internal notes on the negotiations with Israel and Turkey for their adhesion to the secret treaty, something that was denied to China and Uruguay when they requested them, probably due to a fear that they might have leaked the contents when they discovered what was involved. The list of Latin American governments taking part in TiSA is revealing. They are all faithful allies of the United States. The ALBA countries, as well as Brazil, Argentina and others in which Washington does not confide, are excluded.

The most incredible aspect of the TiSA is that total transparency will be demanded of countries that are not part of the secret treaty. The countries that are not part of the intimate circle, must reveal ahead of time and open to discussion all the regulations and rules that that they propose to apply, thus ensuring that the big corporations have time to counter, modify or prevent these sovereign decisions in accord with their interests.

TiSA will take into account all the demands of the financial industry of Wall Street and the City of London, as well as the interests of the big global corporations, for whom the treaty is not secret but a product of their own creation. According to the Professor of Law of the University of Aukland (New Zealand), Jane Kelsey, ‘the great danger is that TiSA will prevent governments from strengthening the rules to control the financial sector”.

Designed in close consultation with the capitalist financial sector on a global scale, the TiSA will oblige the signing governments to strengthen and widen the stock market deregulation and liberalization that sparked the crisis. In addition, governments will be deprived of the right to maintain and control financial data in their territories. Moreover, they will be obliged to accept toxic credit derivatives and be prevented from adopting measures to avoid other crises created by neo-liberalism. And all this will be imposed by secret agreements, so that public opinion will be unable to find out what are the true causes of the ruin of their countries.

(Translated by Jordan Bishop for ALAI).

*Marco A. Gandásegui, Jr., professor of Sociology, University of Panama and researcher associated with the Centro de Estudios Latinoamericanos Justo Arosemena (CELA). www.marcoagandasegui14.blogspot.com . www.salacela.net

 


Categories: Blogs

Off The Cuff: When The Bond Market Fails, Everything Will Fail With It

Chris Martenson - June 25, 2015 - 17:37

In this week's Off the Cuff podcast, Chris and Brian Pretti discuss:

  • Bonds Are For Dough
    • The size of the risk in the credit market is staggering
  • The War On Cash
    • Will going cashless help the credit bubble live longer?
  • Greece & Derivatives
    • How a Grexit could trigger Armageddon
  • The End Of Confidence
    • When it arrives, the collapse will happen swiftly

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Categories: Economics

Forget Monopoly: Play American Commons Instead

Shareable Magazine - June 25, 2015 - 13:17

Commonomics USA's new board game, American Commons, upends Monopoly's core principles. (Image via Huffington Post)

Categories: Economics

Swedish Documentary Makes a Convincing Case for Cooperativism

Shareable Magazine - June 25, 2015 - 11:08

The filmmakers visited several worker-owned cooperatives, including Equal Exchange in West Bridgewater, Massachusetts. (David L. Ryan/Boston Globe)

Categories: Economics

Obama’s Push for Corporate Rule: A Moment of Opportunity

Call it populism versus corporatism or democracy versus corporate rule. Either way, it is a far more meaningful political division than two political parties debating big government versus small.
Categories: Economics