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Get Your Financial House In Order Now
By Michael T. Snyder - SeekingAlpha.com
Do you hear that sound? It is the sound of Europe being hit with a cold dose of financial reality. The air has been let out of the balloon, and investors all over the world are realizing that absolutely nothing has been solved in Europe. The solutions being proposed by the politicians in Europe are just going to make things worse.
You don't solve a sovereign debt crisis by shredding confidence in sovereign debt. But that is exactly what the "voluntary 50% haircut" has done. You don't solve a sovereign debt crisis by pumping up your "bailout fund" with borrowed money from China, Russia and Brazil. More debt is just going to make things even worse down the road. You don't solve a sovereign debt crisis by causing a massive credit crunch. By giving European banks only until June 2012 to dramatically improve their credit ratios, it is going to force many of them to seriously cut back on lending. A massive credit crunch would significantly slow down economic activity in Europe and that is about the last thing that the Europeans need right now. If the deal that was reached last week was the "best shot" that Europe has got, then we are all in for a world of hurt.
'Gold poised for a move significantly higher'
By Ross Norman - CommodityOnline.com
The Greek referendum decision has thrown financial markets back into turmoil and not uncharacteristically Gold has stoically stood its ground and pondered - rarely shaken by sudden news as it is. Another interpretation is that gold has some large and powerful forces acting upon it which are presently cancelling each other out. Those forces are phenomenal flows of investment money into gold reflected by a surge in demand for ETFs and physical bars on the one hand - and the negative impact on gold from a stronger dollar (the corollary to a weaker Euro on the freshly announced Greek referendum). So, its safe haven status against dollar strength - two traditional and powerful drivers of the gold price at odds with each other.
Gold, silver witness correction, may resume upward trend
NEW YORK (Commodity Online): Gold and Silver futures have weakened following the crisis caused by the suspension of MF Global from trading in London Metal Exchange and CME Group. Safe-haven demand for precious metals continue to be inatact on concerns about the Eurozone's efforts to resolve the debt crisis and a stronger dollar has weighed on commodities at the beginning of the week.
"Some investors were also spooked by the news that securities firm MF Global Holdings Ltd. will declare bankruptcy. The large securities company had deals signed with many traders who will lose money after the bankruptcy. Those traders might have to sell big quantities of gold, silver and other commodities to cover their losses, Gero said. That stoked worries that there might be a shortage of buyers in the future, depressing prices," according to an Associated Press report.
Gold Drops through $1700,
Draghi Faces "Baptism of Fire"
after "Referendum Curveball" from Greece
By: Ben Traynor - GoldSeek.com
London Gold Market Report
U.S.DOLLAR gold prices dropped through $1700 an ounce Tuesday lunchtime in London – at one point showing a 3.3% fall from last week's close – as stock and commodity markets were also hit following news that the Greek prime minister has called for a referendum on last week's Euro Summit deal.
Physical gold trading was quiet, news agency Reuters reports, with premiums in Hong Kong falling to around $1 per ounce, having been $1.50 last week.
Make sure you hold some gold
as Government 'Ponzi Schemes' escalate
As governments continue to perpetuate the chaos that is already occurring in the currency markets, the advice is make sure you own some gold - the oldest form of sound money.
Author: David Levenstein - Mineweb.com
JOHANNESBURG - The price of gold pushed through and held above the key resistance level of $1700 an ounce last week, as the US dollar dropped sharply due to the euphoria from Europe about the agreement made at the Euro Summit in Brussels. No one was more excited about the outcome than French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, who seems determined to save the world.
Royal Canadian Mint launches gold exchange traded receipts
NEW YORK (Commodity Online): The Royal Canadian Mint recently announced the launch of their new Goldinvestment product -Exchange Traded Receipts (ETRs). Each ETR will provide the buyer an evidence of ownership of physical bullion held in its facilities in Ottawa and Ontario.
"We believe that this new program will build on our reputation and continued success as a world-class custodian of precious metals. With the introduction of the Canadian Gold Reserves ETR program we hope that investors will see this as a convenient, efficient and secure method for investing in and owning physical gold", Ian E. Bennett, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint said.
Silver Money: A Thought Experiment
Hugo Salinas Price - Plata.com.mx
Earlier this year I wrote a piece with the title "Dorothy’s Silver Shoes", in which I proposed the re-monetization of the Constitutional silver currency of the US; there is a significant amount of this coinage still in existence.
Here’s a "Thought Experiment" regarding the re-monetization of the Constitutional silver dollar, the silver half-dollar, the silver quarter and the silver dime.
The Thought Experiment:
At present, the old silver currency of the US cannot circulate as money because the silver content in the coinage is actually worth a lot more (fiat) dollars if melted down into silver bullion bars. Everybody knows that, but you still can’t use those coins for everyday purchases because nobody knows exactly what they are worth as money in commercial transactions such as purchasing groceries.
Why copper, platinum and silver look appealing now
By Commodity Online
Investors now need to look beyond the traditional safe haven and book profits with less-expensive metals, according to some analysts. Silver demand is set to zoom in India as investors shy away from the costlier yellow metal.
India, the world's largest importer of silver is expected to import 250-300 tonnes of silver during the present quarter, according to Prithviraj Kothari, President of the Bombay Bullion Association.
Gold prices are expensive relative to platinun aand Platinum is a far rarer metal than gold, according to Charles Sizemore in Market Watch. Both silver and platinum get support from its industrial demand with the latter being used in auto catalaysts apart from jewellery.
Striking Euro Gold (and Silver)
By Harold James - ProjectSyndicate.com
PRINCETON – The alternatives for Europe’s currency, the euro, seem increasingly limited to a desperate muddling through or a chaotic collapse. But there is a bolder and more productive approach that relies on past experience with multiple currencies.
The threat posed by Europe’s current policy impasse can hardly be overestimated. In the early 1930’s, monetary-policy incoherence paralyzed US policy, with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York locked in insurmountable conflict with the Chicago Fed over monetary easing (at that time through open-market securities purchases). Today’s chronic policy disputes between Germany and France are producing a level of uncertainty that is potentially even more destructive.
Why Are European Leaders Losing It
Over a Possible Chinese Bailout?
European public figures are deeply concerned about the chance that China might want to make a big contribution to their rescue fund -- By Heather Horn - TheAtlantic.com
It's fascinating to watch European public figures freak out over a possible "bailout" from China. Though the president of the European Central Bank, according to the BBC, "has denied that eurozone countries are going 'cap in hand' to China" to raise money for their rescue fund, clearly this is exactly what others think is going on, and they're far from okay with it.
Nicolas Dupont-Aignant, a current candidate for the French presidency, has called potential Chinese assistance "dirty money," saying China "exploits its people" and is "a Communist dictatorship." Granted, Dupont-Aignant isn't quite mainstream, being the leader of the Gaullist, euroskeptic Debout la République party. But the Socialist candidate for president, Francois Hollande, has also come out against the plan. "Can we imagine that China ... were it to come to the aid of the euro zone, would do so without any compensation?" he's asked. The French Le Monde has reported that he sees the proposal as an "admission of weakness."
Eurozone debt ‘resolution'
hasn't seen gold and silver plunge. Why not?
You might have thought a ‘resolution' to the Eurozone debt crisis would have caused gold to tumble, the euro to soar, and the dollar to fall - perhaps with the gold price in the dollar steady. So why is the price of gold behaving as it is?
Author: Julian D. W. Phillips - Mineweb.com
BENONI - There are so many imagined relationships between gold and other factors and as each one proves incorrect, another takes its place. Is this because the media needs to keep our attention? In part yes, but the credibility that's given to these stories comes from the markets' desire for hope, often unrealistic desperate hope. Gold and silver, in their role as counters to currencies, are harbingers of uncertainty, fear and (to the banking system) a threat to the credibility of paper currencies.
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Greek Gamble on Calling Referendum
Stuns Euro Partners, Merkel Allies Say
By Brian Parkin - Bloomberg.com
Greece’s decision to call a referendum on its five-day-old bailout blindsided its European partners and placed another hurdle in the way of efforts to staunch the debt crisis.
The announcement came “out of the blue, it’s surprising, very risky,”Norbert Barthle, the ranking member of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union party on parliament’s budget committee, said in a telephone interview. "There’s an enormous amount at stake. Do we know how the Greek people will treat their government in this referendum? No. We have a new unknown."
Greece's Papandreou Seeks Euro Referendum
By Maria Petrakis, Natalie Weeks
and Marcus Bensasson - Bloomberg.com
Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou said a referendum onEurope’s rescue package will confirm the nation’s membership of the euro as he stuck to plans to hold the vote amid signs his government may collapse.
"The referendum will be a clear mandate and strong message within and outside Greece on our European course and our participation in the euro," Papandreou told his ministers in Athens early today, according to an e-mailed transcript. It will "ensure this course in the most decisive way." The cabinet voted unanimously to endorse the plan.
Greek government teeters on brink of collapse
in wake of referendum plan
France and Germany battle to save the single currency as Europe is plunged back into turmoil days after rescue deal
By Phillip Inman, and Helena Smith in Athens - Guardian.co.uk
The French president Nicolas Sarkozy and German chancellor Angela Merkel will hold emergency talks on Wednesday in a desperate attempt to hold the eurozone together and formulate a response to the Greek prime minister's plan for a referendum on the austerity measures imposed by his European partners.
George Papandreou's socialist government was on the brink of collapse after his referendum plan sparked an angry reaction within his own party and plunged Europe back into turmoil, just days after a complex rescue deal had been agreed – requiring Greece to embark on tough cost-cutting measures.
This Is Yet Another Glaring Example
Of Why The EU Is A Mind Blowing Failure
The debt crisis in Europe just seems to get worse with each passing day, and it is yet another glaring example of why the EU is a mind blowing failure. The EU is made up of 27 nations that all have their own economic policies, and 17 of those nations are trying to use the euro as a common currency. But when you have 27 different governments pulling in different directions, it is inevitable that there are going to be major problems. The stunt that Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou just pulled is a perfect example of the nightmare that the EU has become. European officials worked really hard to pull together a deal to address the debt crisis (of course the deal was a total mess, but that is another matter), and a couple of days later Papandreou decides that Greece should hold a national referendum on it. It is so bizarre that it almost defies words. But that is what happens in the EU. Someone else always wants to have a say. Someone else always wants to throw a fly into the ointment. Someone else always want to throw in their two cents. The EU is a bureaucratic nightmare and this latest episode is yet another example of that fact. First the politicians in Europe come up with an idiotic plan that is going to make the financial crisis much worse, then Papandreou comes forward and pulls a stunt that shatters what little confidence the financial markets still had in Greece. That is why the EU should break up. It is a total failure and it is time that we all admitted it.
Greek vote sets off 'pandemonium', engulfs Italy
Greece's startling decision to call a referendum on last week's EU summit deal has set off wild tremors across the eurozone, pushing Italy to the brink of a perilous downward spiral.
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard - Telegraph.co.uk
The country's ruling Pasok party appeared to be splintering on Tuesdsay night, leaving it unclear whether the government of premier George Papandreou can survive a parliamentary vote of confidence on Friday.
Signs that the EU's pain-stakingly negotiated Grand Plan is unravelling within days has been a profound shock to confidence.
A frantic search for safe havens led to the second biggest one-day fall ever recorded in Europe's AAA bond yields. Ten-year German Bund yields tumbled 25 basis points to 1.77pc, with similar moves in non-EMU Swedish and Danish debt. British Gilt yields fell to 2.2pc.
Italy, Europe, and Red Brigade terror
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard - Telegraph.co.uk
Matters are turning serious.
Italy’s labour minister Maurizio Sacconi has just warned that a rushed shake-up of the labour market – as demanded by the EU – risks setting off a fresh cycle of terrorism in the country.
Here is the story from Il Sole.
“We must stop creating tension over labour reform which could lead to a new wave of attacks. I am not afraid for myself because I have (armed) protection. I am afraid for the people who are not protected and could become a target of political violence that is not extinct in our country,” he said.
This is not exaggeration. The Red Brigades-PCC assassinated Massimo D’Antona in 1999 and Professor Marco Biagi in 2002 for spear-heading labour reforms.
Greece risks meltdown after bailout vote bombshell
By Dina Kyriakidou and Lefteris Papadimas
(Reuters) - Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou said on Wednesday he would push ahead with a referendum on an EU bailout deal, defying demands from lawmakers of his own party that he quit for jeopardizing Greek membership of the euro.
"The referendum will be a clear mandate and a clear message in and outside Greece on our European course and participation in the euro," Papandreou told a late-night cabinet meeting, according to a statement released by his office.
"No one will be able to doubt Greece's course within the euro," he said, adding that market turmoil triggered by his announcement of the referendum late on Monday would be short-lived.
Global markets plunge
with Greek government on brink of collapse
Global markets plunged as the Greek government teetered on the brink of collapse, while the country's Prime Minister said that his controversial referendum will offer a "clear mandate" on whether Greece stays in the EU.
By Louise Armitstead - Telegraph.co.uk
European stockmarkets led a global rout in the wake of Greece's shock decision to call a referendum on the bail-out agreed last Wednesday.
Credit rating agencies and bondholders said the risk of a disorderly Greek default had soared, threatening the agreements made in Brussels on bank re-capitalisations and bond haircuts.
A crisis cabinet meeting was called in Athens on Tuesday amid demands for Prime Minister George Papandreou's resignation. Opponents of the Greek premier derided his calling a referendum as an "act of unprecedented irresponsibility". Mr Papandreou said his government would face a vote of confidence on Friday night.
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U.S. Lawmakers to Propose Transaction Tax
By Phil Mattingly - Bloomberg.com
Two U.S. lawmakers will introduce measures to impose a transaction tax on financial firms that resembles a proposal released by the European Union.
Senator Tom Harkin, an Iowa Democrat, and Representative Peter DeFazio, an Oregon Democrat, will introduce the bills tomorrow in their respective chambers. The bills will give the United States an increased role in the international debate over a transaction tax, which is likely to be discussed at the Group of 20 summit this week in Cannes, France.
"It’s a significant way to raise some needed revenue," Harkin said in an interview today in Washington. "Quite frankly, I bet nobody would even feel it."
Gross Says Collapse
of Corzine’s MF Global May Erode Investor Confidence
By Margaret Collins - Bloomberg.com
Bill Gross, manager of the world’s largest bond fund at Pacific Investment Management Co., said the collapse of MF Global Holdings Ltd. (MF) may further erode investor confidence.
Investors may be "more concerned about the return of their money than the return on their money," Gross said today in San Francisco at a conference for investment advisers held by Charles Schwab Corp. (SCHW)
MF Global filed the eighth-largest U.S. bankruptcy yesterday, after failing to find a buyer over the weekend. The New York-based futures broker suffered a ratings downgrade and loss of customers after revealing it bet $6.3 billion on Italian, Spanish, Belgian, Portuguese and Irish debt, leading to the filing.
Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Charts -
MF Global Is the Tip of a Pyramid of Lies
JESSE'S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN
MF Global, the latest brokerage firm to start slipping under the waves, was using customer funds to back their proprietary trades according to a story from Associated Press.
The CME, the exchange on which the MF Global acted as clearing company, has a reported $4 billion in member contributed funds to cover any customer losses from a member firm. But obviously the guardians of the system cannot risk a run on the exchanges and brokerages.
I fully expect a strong effort will be made to hush this one up and sweep it under the rug. The $700 million was merely misplaced, left it in the other coat pocket, never missing, simple accounting error, completely safe. They will just juggle the books and shift the equity around, increasing the leverage on positions. You don't go to prison for carrying excessive leverage. MF Global should have bought a small bank like Goldman did, and then buried their losses at the Fed.
6 things no one will tell you about MF Global
This is what’s wrong with the economy
By Brett Arends, MarketWatch
BOSTON (MarketWatch) — Here’s a brain-teaser for you.
Which corporate honcho bragged recently about his company’s strong resources, positive outlook and outstanding "execution" skills? Who said he was "particularly pleased" at recent developments, and predicted “competitive returns to shareholders in the quarters ahead”?
Tim Cook at Apple? Alan Mulally at Ford? Mike Duke at Wal-Mart?
None of the above. The answer is Jon Corzine, who runs MF Global Holdings Ltd.MF -16.08% He made those remarks a week ago. Yesterday the company filed for bankruptcy.
One week. No kidding.
MF Global Broke Law, Did Not Keep Client Funds Separate
By Megan McArdle - TheAtlantic.com
The bankruptcy of MF Global has attracted a lot of attention on the internet, for obvious reasons. It seems that its head, former New Jersey Senator and Governor Jon Corzine, was not a popular man with, well, pretty much anyone. (And having had him speak at my business-school graduation, I can see why.) The unholy glee in his fall has been surprisingly well distributed across the many corners of the internet.
But I held off--in part because I was mired in that somewhat excessive post on elites and expectations, and in part, because I wasn't sure exactly what to say. It seemed a shame to kick a man when he was down. But the execution of the bankruptcy seemed to have gone pretty smoothly. Absent worries that this was the start of the second US banking panic, a la 1932, I didn't have much to say.
All MF Global Funds Accounted For
By Tiffany Kary and Linda Sandler - Bloomberg.com
MF Global Holdings Ltd. (MF), run by former New Jersey governor andGoldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) co- chairman Jon Corzine, has accounted for all its customer funds, said Kenneth Ziman, a lawyer for MF Global, citing the company’s management.
"To the best knowledge of management, there is no shortfall," Ziman told U.S. Bankruptcy judge Martin Glenn in Manhattan, who inquired about whether a shortfall in customer accounts would affect the case, citing media reports that hundreds of millions of dollars were missing. Most of MF Global’s U.S. assets are held at its brokerage unit, Ziman said.
MF Global accounts shock leaves clients scrambling
By Ann Saphir and Jonathan Spicer
(Reuters) - MF Global Holdings Ltd failed to protect customer accounts by keeping them separate from its own funds, said a top U.S. exchange regulator, another shock for commodity markets scrambling to contain fallout from the brokerage's bankruptcy.
The revelation on Tuesday by CME Group Inc suggests Jon Corzine's MF Global violated a central tenet of futures brokerages. It could erode confidence in a market that for decades has enjoyed a sterling reputation for safety.
Are the Clients of MF Global Insured Against Fraud?
A question has been raised as to if the clients of MF Global are insured on their losses as a client of a bank or securities firm would be under FDIC or SIPC? The answer is maybe.
While there is no regulatory insurance agency to cover the losses of MF Global clients, the CME itself has a guarantee fund for losses. This fund is financed by the other Primary Clearing members. So all FCMs bear some burden of MF Global's indiscretions. We believe it amounts to a $4BB Clearing Member "error Account"
And Obama makes 13...
Supercommittee must not 'fail the country,'
Bowles says, offering his own plan
By Lori Montgomery - WashingtonPost.com
Erskine Bowles, the former White House chief of staff who has worked for months to tamethe national debt, bluntly warned members of a congressional panel Tuesday that they will “fail the country” if they do not break the impasse over taxes that is blocking a far-reaching agreement.
"I know most of you. . . . I have great respect for each of you individually," Bowles told the 12 lawmakers gathered before him in an ornate House hearing room for the fifth public meeting of the debt-reduction supercommittee. "But collectively, I’m worried you’re going to fail. Fail the country."
Snapping 3-Day Gain Before Sale Announcement
By Candice Zachariahs - Bloomberg.com
Treasury 10-year notes fell, snapping a three-day advance, after yields dropped below 2 percent yesterday and before the U.S. announces the size of next week’s auctions.
Yields on 10-year Treasuries rose after yesterday touching the lowest level in almost a month as Wrightson ICAP LLC projected that the Treasury Department will probably announce today the sale next week of $72 billion of securities maturing in three, 10 and 30 years. Thirty-year bonds snapped their biggest rally since 2008, which came amid renewed concern Greecewill default on its debt.
Manufacturing in U.S.
Comes Close to Stagnating as Global Demand Weakens
By Bob Willis - Bloomberg.com
Manufacturing in the U.S. was close to stagnating in October as cooling global demand prompted factories to pare production and reduce inventories.
The Institute for Supply Management’s factory index dropped to 50.8 last month from 51.6 in September, the Tempe, Arizona- based group’s data showed today. A reading of 52 was the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of economists. Fifty is the dividing line between growth and contraction.
Manufacturing weakened from China to the U.K., partly a reflection of Beijing’s efforts to cool its economy and Europe’s debt crisis. Signs the industry that spearheaded the U.S. recovery is stumbling highlight the risks to growth as Federal Reserve policy makers meet to determine if more monetary easing is needed to spur demand.
12 Reasons To Be Extremely Pessimistic
About The Direction That The Economy Is Headed
Do you want to feel optimistic about the U.S. economy? If so, you might not want to read the rest of this article. In many areas of the United States today, you can almost smell the fear and the anxiety in the air. Survey after survey has found that the American people are extremely pessimistic about the direction the economy is headed. In fact, many recent surveys have found that economic pessimism is at the highest levels ever recorded. There has been an astonishing loss of faith in the system. In general, people are extremely dissatisfied with how things are going right now, and they do not believe that things will get better any time soon. When the majority of the population starts losing hope like that, it creates a very unstable economic environment. Once people are gripped by desperation, they start behaving much differently. Desperate people do desperate things, and we are already starting to see this in many parts of the country.
For Whom The Bell Tolls
By: CAPTAINHOOK - GoldSeek.com
If you have taken the time to read Hemmingway’s For Whom The Bell Toll’s, one could not help but be struck by the genius in his method of making the most from a good title, and this is my aim here today as well. Because like a picture, a good title can capture the essence of a story in one concise statement, providing the writer with a great deal more ease and effectiveness in making his point(s). In this case, Hemmingway was making the point that modern machinery (today it's computerized trading) was destroying the concept of romantic / ancient war, which is a way of saying, mankind, is maturing in an undesirable and tragic fashion. And in this regard I would have to agree, for to me it appears we are ‘hell-bent on our own destruction’, where everything from the vulgarities associated with technological innovation to excessive population growth are coming together to create the need for a ‘profound shift’ in the way we will be living moving forward, in our socio-economic systems as it were.
Bernanke Reviving Housing
May Rely on Wider Access to Mortgage Refinancing
By Scott Lanman and Caroline Salas Gage - Bloomberg.com
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke can’t go it alone when it comes to reviving the U.S. housing market.
Fed policy makers, who started a two-day meeting today, are considering buying mortgage-backed securities to push down borrowing costs and help homeowners refinance their debt. That would reduce monthly payments, freeing up cash for other purchases that could spur the economy and reduce unemployment, Fed GovernorDaniel Tarullo said Oct. 20.
Allied Mortgage Hit with DOJ Suit, HUD Suspension
BY JANN SWANSON - MortgageNewsDaily.com
The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Ginnie Mae have suspended Allied Home Mortgage Corporation, thereby preventing the company from originating and underwriting new mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or issue securities through Ginnie Mae's Mortgage-Backed Securities program. The suspensions include by name the company's president and chief executive officer, James C. Hodge, and its executive vice president and chief compliance officer Jeanne L. Stell and come in the wake of a suit filed earlier in the day by the Justice Department (DOJ) in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan against the company and its two officers.
The suit alleges that Allied, one of the largest of the lenders approved to write for FHA, had engaged infraudulent lending practices that have cost the government more than $834 million in FHA insurance claims. The suit said that the lenders had engaged "in reckless mortgage lending, flouting the requirements of the FHA mortgage insurance program, and repeatedly lying about its compliance."
Mortgage Crisis Goes Primetime
By John Downs - GoldSeek.com
A near-death experience often provides needed perspective to effectuate real change. But no matter how often the over-regulated and over-subsidized US banking sector flirts with disaster, it never seems to change its ways.
Three years have gone by since subprime mortgage exposure threw the financial system into cardiac arrest. Experienced analysts are under no illusions about the progress since then: the banks are still not eating right and they're certainly not slimming down. It seems these institutions feel trapped by their situation and are just waiting for the inevitable. This month, the PrimeX group of indices, a measure that quantifies the likelihood of default in prime residential and commercial mortgages, began flashing red.
4 million borrowers eligible for foreclosure review
By Brady Dennis - WashingtonPost.com
More than 4 million borrowers who have faced foreclosure since early 2009 will have the chance to have their cases reviewed for potential wrongdoing, federal regulators and some of the nation’s largest mortgage servicers announced Tuesday.
The reviews stem from a deal forged earlier this year in which 14 servicers agreed to hire independent consultants to evaluate whether borrowers suffered financial injury during the foreclosure process. If a review finds errors or abuses by the financial firms, the consultants will determine what recompense wronged homeowners deserve.
U.S. Faces Much Worse 'Japanization'
By Jeff Nielson - Implode-o-Meter Blog
As the collapse of the U.S. economy quickly evolved into the Crash of ‘08; politicians, "experts", and mainstream media shills were unanimous: the U.S. economy would/could "never experience the Lost Decade" experienced by Japan's economy after several, huge asset bubbles simultaneously burst.
At that same time I was equally adamant in my own writing: the U.S. would be extraordinarily lucky if its economic collapse was no worse than that of Japan. In fact my expectation was that the collapse of the U.S. economy would be many times worse than what has become a "Lost Generation" for the economy of Japan, resulting in my dubbing the collapse of the U.S. economy to be its "Greater Depression".
Boeing brings space taxi jobs to Florida
By Irene Klotz
CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida
(Reuters) - Boeing Co will bring hundreds of jobs to Florida by basing a program to develop passenger spaceships at the Kennedy Space Center, first for NASA and later for commercial use, officials said on Monday.
Boeing's plans will ease some of the pain over thousands of job losses in the so-called Space Coast region of central Florida from the end of NASA's space shuttle program earlier this year.
Boeing will ramp up its workforce to about 550 by 2015 to make, test and operate the seven-passenger spaceships, called CST-100s, said John Mulholland, vice president and program manager of commercial programs for Boeing Space Exploration.
Obama's 'Snitch' Policy Threat to Us
By Sharon Sebastian - PatriotPost.us
Before Barack Obama swore to uphold the Constitution and to protect Americans from enemies foreign and domestic, early warnings were pinging about like signals off a cell tower. Predictions: 1.) The economy would nosedive and 2.) America would have a renewed military presence in Africa before the end of Obama's first term. What was not foreseen was the Obama administration's fixation on "snitching." They are for it. Obama brazenly initiated his report-on-your-neighbor, big brother initiative via a White House run "snitch website" called "flag."
Democracy Versus Mob Rule
By Thomas Sowell - PatriotPost.us
In various cities across the country, mobs of mostly young, mostly incoherent, often noisy and sometimes violent demonstrators are making themselves a major nuisance.
Meanwhile, many in the media are practically gushing over these "protesters," and giving them the free publicity they crave for themselves and their cause -- whatever that is, beyond venting their emotions on television.
Members of the mobs apparently believe that other people, who are working while they are out trashing the streets, should be forced to subsidize their college education -- and apparently the President of the United States thinks so too.
But if these loud mouths' inability to put together a coherent line of thought is any indication of their education, the taxpayers should demand their money back for having that money wasted on them for years in the public schools.
Condoleezza Rice says
prospects for Mideast peace have worsened under Obama
By Associated Press - WashingtonPost.com
WASHINGTON — Prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace are far worse today than when she left office, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Tuesday, and she partly blames the Obama administration’s tough line against Israeli settlement-building for spoiling chances for new talks.
"When you look at where we are now, we’re a long, long way back from where we were," Rice said in an interview with The Associated Press.
Rice said she had hoped that the Obama administration could revive stalled peace talks quickly when it took office in 2009, but she said she was disappointed by the new administration’s handling of the delicate issue of new Israeli housing construction in the West Bank.
* * * * *
What may be involved in an Israeli strike on Iran
Israel is believed to have a fully prepared plan to launch a strike, which would likely involve at least several hundred aircraft.
By YAAKOV LAPPIN - JPost.com
Over the past several days, Hebrew media reports have been engaged in intense speculation regarding a possible imminent Israeli strike on Iran’s nuclear sites.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak appeared to have made a veiled reference to the issue again on Tuesday, when he told the Knesset that Israel may have to protect its vital interests alone, while other reports focused on comments by Interior Minister Eli Yishai, who stated this week that difficult decisions were 'keeping him up at nights," without elaborating further.
Analysts Believe Israel is Moving Closer to Iran Strike
By Jeffrey Goldberg - TheAtlantic.com
Haaretz is reporting a new diplomatic initiative by Israel to convince Western countries to increase sanctions on Iran. The work comes ahead of an IAEA report to be released on November 8, which is expected to detail the scope of Iran's nuclear program and submit evidence that Iran is attempting to build a nuclear bomb:
"The significant progress that has taken place on all the components of the Iranian nuclear program should be emphasized, especially uranium enrichment," said a classified cable sent to Israeli ambassadors in several dozen countries. "The Iranian program is military, and in light of International Atomic Energy Agency reports, there is an increased fear that the Iranians are developing a nuclear warhead for ballistic missiles."
Israel hikes missile range over Iran fears
TEL AVIV, Israel, Nov. 1 (UPI) -- Israel is reported to be seeking to extend the range of its Jericho- 3 ballistic missile, which could be used for pre-emptive military strikes against Iran's nuclear facilities.
Amid persistent concerns that Israel may launch unilateral attacks, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, a hawk on the issue, warned Monday that a nuclear Iran will pose a direct threat to Israel.
The Haaretz daily reported Tuesday the Israeli government stepped up its diplomatic campaign for tougher action to force Tehran to abandon its contentious nuclear program.
US fears uncoordinated Israeli strike on Iran
Washington concerned Israel will mount military operation against Islamic Republic, State Department official says. US consequently putting greater pressure on Security Council to impose harsher sanctions on Iran
By Alex Fishman - YNetNews.com
Fearing an uncoordinated Israeli attack against Iran, the United States is working on several levels to pressure the UN's Security Council into imposing harsher sanctions on Iran, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Monday.
A senior US State Department official said there was growing concern among Obama administration officials ahead of an IAEA report set to be published in November indicating considerable progress in Tehran's development of its military nuclear program.
Israel to speed up W. Bank building after UNESCO vote
By TOVAH LAZAROFF AND KHALED ABU TOAMEH - JPost.com
Move comes after Palestinians gain entry to UNESCO, planning similar moves with other UN agencies; State to halt tax transfers to PA; 'Peace process could be destroyed,' warns Ramallah official.
n a series of retaliatory moves against the Palestinian Authority, Israel on Tuesday night decided to accelerate Jewish construction over the pre-1967 lines and temporarily suspend the transfer of tax funds to the PA.
The PA immediately slammed the two decisions made by the Inner Cabinet, a forum of eight ministers, which had convened for several hours.
Israel’s decision to build new housing units in east Jerusalem and two West Bank settlements will destroy the peace process, the PA warned.
Tepco Detects Possible Nuclear Fission
By Tsuyoshi Inajima - Bloomberg.com
Tokyo Electric Power Co. detected signs of possible nuclear fission at its crippled Fukushima atomic power plant in northern Japan, raising the risk of more radiation leaks.
The company, known as Tepco, began spraying boric acid on the No. 2 reactor at 2:48 a.m. Japan time in an attempt to prevent accidental chain reactions. Tepco said it may have found xenon, which is associated with nuclear fission, while examining gases taken from the reactor, according to an e-mailed statement today.
The amount of detected xenon is “very small” and results of the utility’s analysis may be wrong, said Hiroyuki Usami, a spokesman for Tepco. No significant changes in temperatures and pressures of the reactor and radiation levels at the site have been detected, he said.
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