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January 11, 2009
Issue 28  -  Government Idiocy
 
The Government of the United States is in a complete melt down.  Nobody knows what to do so completely inane things ARE being done.  Witness this:
 
"Is Feb. 10 financial doomsday for thousands?
New law could force companies into ruin

Posted: January 08, 2009
12:13 am Eastern

By Chelsea Schilling


WorldNetDaily

Jacobsen Books in Clinton, Wis.

A new government regulation scheduled to take effect next month has thousands of retailers, thrift stores and small businesses worried they will be forced to permanently close their doors – and destroy their merchandise.

The law is expected to have such a devastating impact that Feb. 10 is now unofficially known as "National Bankruptcy Day."

Congress passed the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008, or HR 4040, a retroactive rule mandating that all items sold for use by children under 12 must be tested by an independent party for lead and phthalates, which are chemicals used to make plastics more pliable.

All untested items, regardless of lead content, are to be declared "banned hazardous products.'' The CPSC has already determined the law applies to every children's item on shelves, not just to items made beginning Feb. 10.

The regulations could force thousands of businesses – especially smaller ones that cannot afford the cost of lead testing – to throw away truckloads of children's clothing, books, toys, furniture and other children's items and even force them to close their doors.

Children's books

Valerie Jacobsen and her husband, Paul, support their family of 13 by selling literature at Jacobsen Books in Clinton, Wis. Her family has contracts with local libraries to buy and sell overstocked books – an arrangement that draws income for both parties.

However, Jacobsen told WND that lead testing is estimated to cost $100 to $400 for each of her used children's books because she does not buy in bulk, and each batch of merchandise is required to be tested.

"There's a big difference between me and Wal-Mart or Toys 'R' Us," she said. "They'll have a batch of 50,000. Everything I have is a batch of one because I don't know its history. I'm looking at a testing cost of about $1.2 million. I would normally sell my full inventory of all children's products for probably $15,000. So, it's effectively a ban."


Valerie Jacobsen

The Consumer Product Safety Commission states that lead testing requirements apply to children's books, cassettes and CDs, printed game boards, posters and other printed goods used for children's education. While it does claim some printing inks will be exempt, paper, cardboard, bindings, glues, laminates and other inks are still subject to regulation and require testing.

Jacobsen said that unless the new law is repealed or substantially modified, it could devastate her family business.

"I don't want to stop selling children's books on Feb. 9," she said. "I need that income. We provide a lot of reading for a lot of little kids. I went into this business because I thought that books were good for children's mental development. That opinion hasn't changed. And the government's ruling is essentially saying they're hazardous for children's mental development because they might contain lead. We just have no evidence that they do." ......snip

  ........Even Goodwill Industries told the station it may be forced to stop selling clothing and other children's items if testing is too expensive. The move could affect consumers who donate items for tax write-offs if the stores are not able to sell them.

"A huge hit for us and a huge hit for consumers that are trying to save a dollar in this economy," Goodwill's Mark Klingler told KXTV. "We'll have to analyze it. It may involve not selling if we can't realistically test everything."

Likewise, Shauna Sloan, founder of the Salt Lake City-based Kid to Kid Franchise, which sells used children's clothing in 75 stores across the country, told the Los Angeles Times his business could end.

"We will have to lock our doors and file for bankruptcy," he said. "

So the do gooders who are always trying to "save the children" have essentially doomed thousands of small businesses.  The mental capacity of these clowns must be questioned.
 
Then I find out about this:
 

"China Currency Manipulation Act of 2008

A bill to require the Secretary of the Treasury to take action with respect to currency manipulation by the People's Republic of China, and for other purposes.

Official: A bill to require the Secretary of the Treasury to take action with respect to currency manipulation by the People's Republic of China, and for other purposes. as introduced. Short: China Currency Manipulation Act of 2008 as introduced.

4/3/2008—Introduced:

China Currency Manipulation Act of 2008 - Directs the Secretary of the Treasury to: (1) make an affirmative determination that the People's Republic of China (PRC) is manipulating the rate of exchange between its currency and the U.S. dollar

(2) establish and report to Congress on a plan of action to remedy such currency manipulation

(3) initiate expeditiously bilateral negotiations with the PRC to ensure that it regularly adjusts the rate of exchange between its currency and the U.S. dollar in order to permit effective balance of payment adjustments and eliminate unfair competitive advantage in trade

(4) instruct the Executive Director to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to use the U.S. vote to ensure that the PRC takes such action to achieve such goals./>(2) establish and report to Congress on a plan of action to remedy such currency manipulation; (3) initiate expeditiously bilateral negotiations with the PRC to ensure that it regularly adjusts the rate of exchange between its currency and the U.S. dollar in order to permit effective balance of payment adjustments and eliminate unfair competitive advantage in trade; and (4) instruct the Executive Director to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to use the U.S. vote to ensure that the PRC takes such action to achieve such goals."
 
Didn't hear anything about this anywhere, now did you?  This is just legalizing market manipulation.  I guess now it's ok.  What's next the Stock Market Preservation ACT?  Can't have that falling any further.  While the "press" does NOTHING.  We don't even hear about it except on obscure web sites (this one included)  How can this POSSIBLY not be mentioned on the news?  Because the main stream media is captured by the powers that be and they get what they want.  Trust me on this.
 
And the hits keep on coming, this time a find from GATA:
 
"Dave from Denver...

Is the U.S. Govt engaged in a check kiting scheme?

Here's an interesting analysis which argues that the Paulson has given TARP money to GMAC which has already been allocated to other banks, but which has not been drawn down yet:

The Treasury had already allocated all the $350 billion that Congress authorized for the first half of the program. But even though the Treasury Department has not yet requested the second half of the money, officials said they could provide the financing to GMAC because they have not actually used all of the money allocated for recapitalizing banks.

Catch that? This sounds equivalent to writing $1,100 of checks on a checking account with $1,000 in it because only $900 of the checks have already been cashed. In the real world, this is called "check kiting," and it's illegal.

And now GM is advertising zero percent financing with kited taxpayer money - essentially the U.S. taxpayer is paying for all new GM customers to own a car."
 
You just can't make this stuff up.  They are double dipping.  This is deceptive and probably illegal, even for the Government.  But don't worry, they've got other things to do, like setting up old friends with sweetheart deals, again from GATA:
 

"Dave from Denver…

IndyMac acquired by ex-Goldman fraternity

Anyone find it interesting that IndyMac is being acquired by a coterie of ex-Goldman bankers?

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/ news?
pid=20601087&sid=amsKqB0fIxtQ& refer=home

Dune Capital's Steven Mnuchin is also the son of Robert Mnuchin, who was an old-time partner with Goldman during the time when Goldman was Wall Street's elite private partnership.

To me this calls into the question as to whether or not this was an arm's-length transaction. This deal was clearly overseen by the Treasury Dept, which is loaded with Goldman Sachs people, and should have been conducted and structured in a way which maximizes the sale proceeds to the taxpayers.

Although details are lacking, it appears that the buyers will be on the hook for the first 20% of losses and the FDIC (aka the taxpayer) will be on the hook for the remaining 80%. Does this seem fair given that the buyers are only putting up 10% of the total capital ($1.3 billion being paid for $13 billion of total assets).

I have a hard time believing that this deal was put together with the interests of maximizing taxpayer proceeds and minimizing taxpayer liabilities. Rather, it appears that the Goldman Sachs fraternity running our country has confiscated yet even more taxpayer largesse. And the stealing seems to be even more blatant and met with less public resistance with each new deal. It's also interesting to me that this deal was consummated at a time when Congress is in recess and the White House is in transition. Looks to me like the foxes guarding the henhouse are in the process of cleaning out the whole barn."

Incomprehensible how much crap these guys are getting away with and no one says anything.  Only responsible for the first 20% of the losses?  What the hell is going on?  As the country is wrecked and robbed, the press twiddles their thumbs.  Never mind that the country is spiraling down a debt vortex.  Another one from GATA:
 
"Bill,
On New Year's Eve, King Henry, Wall Street's favorite Treasury Secretary, sat down and drank some of the free champagne gifted to him from Goldman Sachs, and read the daily Midas commentary. To his surprise he read that the Federal Debt had dropped over the last two months. He then decided that he had taken this financial prudence way too seriously and started writing checks. By the time he was done, at the end of the day, the U.S. debt had increased $146.8 billion dollars for one of the largest one day increases ever. The amount of this one day increase is about equal to the total amount of debt the U.S. took on for World War ll. The total Federal Debt ended 2008 at $10,699,804,864,612.13. This is an increase of $1,470,632,205,393.82 (15.93%) for the calendar year. Regards,
Bryant"


Read that paragraph again and let it sink in.  The number are numbing and that's why they get away with it.  But wait, what's this:
 
"German bond sale's fate signals trouble ahead

By David Oakley in London

Published: January 7 2009 13:30 | Last updated: January 7 2009 20:45

A German sovereign bond auction failed on Wednesday as investors shunned one of the most liquid and safe assets in the world in a warning for governments seeking to raise record amounts of debt to stimulate slowing economies.

The fate of the first eurozone bond auction of 2009 signals trouble ahead as governments around the world hope to issue an estimated $3,000bn in debt this year, three times more than in 2008."
 
 
Add this to the talk coming from Obama regarding trillions of dollars in new debt for YEARS to come and there is a question that comes to mind.  If Germany, one of the top five largest economies is having a bond failure (not being able to sell all the debt being offered), then how is the U.S. going to sell theirs?   Answer:  they won't, and that's when the panic starts.  Oh, and by the way, more and more are catching on to the game:
 
"Merrill Lynch says rich turning to gold bars for safety
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
Last Updated: 10:32AM GMT 09 Jan 2009

Merrill Lynch has revealed that some of its richest clients are so alarmed by the state of the financial system and signs of political instability around the world that they are now insisting on the purchase of gold bars, shunning derivatives or "paper" proxies.

Gary Dugan, the chief investment officer for the US bank, said there has been a remarkable change in sentiment. "People are genuinely worried about what the world is going to look like in 2009. It is amazing how many clients want physical gold, not ETFs," he said, referring to exchange trade funds listed in London, New York, and other bourses.

"They are so worried they want a portable asset in their house. I never thought I would be getting calls from clients saying they want a box of krugerrands," he said.

Merrill predicted that gold would soon blast through its all time-high of $1,030 an ounce, and would hit $1,150 by June.

The metal should do well whatever happens. If deflation sets in and rocks the economic system it will serve as a safe-haven, but if massive monetary stimulus gains traction and sets off inflation once again it will also come into its own as a store of value. "It's win-win either way," said Mr Dugan. "
 
What does all this mean?  It means that circumstances are worsening, not improving.  If the super wealthy are asking for metal, you should too.  Make sure you acquire actual metal.  Do NOT buy the Electronic traded funds like GLD or SLV.  These only help the manipulation continue.
 
In closing I've found a video that all Americans should be required to watch.  The title is somewhat misleading but the message is crystal clear.  This country has been co-opted by a cabal of the super wealthy.  You must position yourself accordingly or face a very gloomy future.