Daily Digest

Daily Digest 10/16 - Bank Staff Pushed To Hard-Sell Tactics, Thieves Raid Veggie Gardens, Wall St. Bankers Dismiss Protestors

Sunday, October 16, 2011, 9:45 AM
  • Desperate bank staff pushed into hard-sell tactics
  • Growing Trend: Thieves Raid Vegetable Gardens in Indianapolis, New York and Chicago
  • Foreclosures Empty Homes, and Criminals Fill Them Up
  • BP allowed back into the bidding for gulf oil drilling rights
  • Jim Rickards’ First Hand Account of Occupy Wall Street Protest
  • In Private, Wall St. Bankers Dismiss Protesters as Unsophisticated
  • WikiLeaks Cable Hints At Motive For Alleged Iran Plot
  • Inside Obama's War Room

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Desperate bank staff pushed into hard-sell tactics (TG)

Financial Services Union NSW secretary Geoff Derricknts said: "What it means for customers is that it is very hard to be certain when you get advice at your branch whether it is based on your needs, or their desire for either job security or a bonus."

Growing Trend: Thieves Raid Vegetable Gardens in Indianapolis, New York and Chicago (June C.)

Last year, her group had a three-acre site near 46th Street and Arlington Avenue. It was plundered so badly that the gardeners left the site and moved to a plot at 46th Street and Post Road, she said, but it has “been ripped up, too.”

Foreclosures Empty Homes, and Criminals Fill Them Up (jdargis)

“They’re becoming a magnet for criminal activity,” said Deputy Inspector Miltiadis Marmara, the commanding officer of the 113th Precinct in South Jamaica. “They hang out in these abandoned homes that may be foreclosed, or the owners walked away.” He added, “Every day we respond to something to that effect.”

BP allowed back into the bidding for gulf oil drilling rights (pinecarr)

The Obama administration has infuriated environmentalists by giving BP the green light to bid for new drilling rights in the Gulf of Mexico.

The move – seen as a major step in the company's political rehabilitation as an offshore driller following the Deepwater Horizon accident – was revealed by the head of the US safety regulator after a congressional hearing in Washington.

Jim Rickards’ First Hand Account of Occupy Wall Street Protest (pinecarr)

Governments have failed to stop the concentration of wealth, the concentration of financial power, the proliferation of derivatives and the metastasizing of systemic risk facilitated by unethical, self-absorbed and shortsighted bankers. So the people respond.

In Private, Wall St. Bankers Dismiss Protesters as Unsophisticated (jdargis)

Some on Wall Street viewed the protesters with disdain, and a degree of caution, as hundreds marched through the financial district on Friday. Others say they feel their pain, but are befuddled about what they are supposed to do to ease it. A few even feel personally attacked, and say the Occupy Wall Street protesters who have been in Zuccotti Park for weeks are just bitter about their own economic fate and looking for an easy target. If anything, they say, people should show some gratitude.

WikiLeaks Cable Hints At Motive For Alleged Iran Plot (jdargis)

As soon as the plot was disclosed, Saudi officialdom was calling for some kind of retaliation. Speaking earlier this week in London, Turki al-Faisal, a former Saudi ambassador to the U.S. and former head of Saudi intelligence for many years, signaled what the Saudi government now expects from Tehran.

"The burden of proof and the amount of evidence on the case is overwhelming, and clearly shows official Iranian responsibility for it," he said. "This is unacceptable and something that in the authority in Iran, somebody will have to pay a price."

Inside Obama's War Room (jdargis)

Since the beginning of the Arab Spring, the Obama administration had been grappling with how the United States should respond to the wave of democratic uprisings sweeping the region, first in Tunisia, then in Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya, Morocco and Syria. In his first major foreign-policy address as president, given 18 months earlier in Cairo, Obama had pointedly called for a fundamental realignment in the region. "I've come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world," he declared, warning autocratic governments that they must maintain their power "through consent, not coercion."

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Re : Inside Obama's War Room

The article Inside Obama's War Room is very misleading. The "Responsiblity to protect" story is a farce. Most of what is happening in middle-east has been engineered by the elites  who use the local people's desperation to further their own goals (Western governments are just a medium). To get a real understanding of what is really happening in the middle-east as well as ex soviet republics, read William Engdahl's book "Full spectrum dominance".

Engdahl's other books Gods of Money (tracing the role of elites in the global financial crisis) & Seeds of destruction (Tracing the growing control of elites & corporations on global food supply) are also phenomenal pieces of investigative journalism which really educate the public about happenings behind the scene.


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Economics has met the enemy, and it is economics

Economics has met the enemy, and it is economics

“We experiment with our models,” he explained, “before we wreck the world.”

Rational-expectations theory and its corollary, the efficient-market hypothesis, have been central to mainstream economics for more than 40 years. And while they may not have “wrecked the world,” some critics argue these models have blinded economists to reality: Certain the universe was unfolding as it should, they failed both to anticipate the financial crisis of 2008 and to chart an effective path to recovery.

The economic crisis has produced a crisis in the study of economics – a growing realization that if the field is going to offer meaningful solutions, greater attention must be paid to what is happening in university lecture halls and seminar rooms.

While the protesters occupying Wall Street are not carrying signs denouncing rational-expectations and efficient-market modelling, perhaps they should be.

They wouldn't be the first young dissenters to call economics to account. In June of 2000, a small group of elite graduate students at some of France's most prestigious universities declared war on the economic establishment. This was an unlikely group of student radicals, whose degrees could be expected to lead them to lucrative careers in finance, business or government if they didn't rock the boat. Instead, they protested – not about tuition or workloads, but that too much of what they studied bore no relation to what was happening outside the classroom walls.

They launched an online petition demanding greater realism in economics teaching, less reliance on mathematics “as an end in itself” and more space for approaches beyond the dominant neoclassical model, including input from other disciplines, such as psychology, history and sociology. Their conclusion was that economics had become an “autistic science,” lost in “imaginary worlds.” They called their movement Autisme-economie.

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In Private, Wall St. Bankers Dismiss Protesters

I have a relative who is a VP in Citigroup's Greenwich St office. I asked him the other day what the OWS movement looks like to him. Here's his reply:

"Honestly, it looks like a LOT of people unhappy with the labor situation in the US, trying to find someone to blame. The only common message I've heard from them is joblessness. 'Nothing available after graduating college. Working 2 or 3 low paying - no skills required - jobs after 4 or 6 years of higher education.'

"Also, they have no leader, so it's not well organized - but it is big. It is spreading throughout the US from coast to coast. It's a bit like the riots in London in early August, sans the violence. My guess; it'll be gone right after the first snow fall, but not before.

"The city of New York just canceled the clean-up of Zuccotti Park where they congregate, because they were facing the risk of more arrests, and the city really does not want to arrest people because of a clean-up operation.

"I was on the trading floor of the new York Stock Exchange 2 weeks ago, and [the OWS] looked reasonably well contained at that point. Now, it's much bigger, but they lack organization. Once someone prominent takes charge, it could morph into a real movement. They organized a protest in front of some of the apartment buildings on the upper east side where many of the wealthy financiers live. Among them, Jamie Dimon (CEO of JP Morgan Chase). However, the mayor told them to stay away, since Jamie employs over 250,000 people, and should not be the target of their demonstrations."

BTW, the OWS movement has spread to Sydney. If anything, these are interesting times!

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Arthur Robey
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Evitions and Ownership.

The Problem with squatters is playing out exactly as Dmitri Orlov predicted. Soon the counterparties who own the houses will be asking their defaulting tennants to please stay put. But first we have to have this wreckage before the owners become real.

Wether the owners can be identified in the "sliced and diced, tranch, robo-signed, too big to fail" business model can be found is another story altogether.

The enforcers should not comply with an eviction notice unless the party evicting can show an iron-clad trail of ownership extending back to the dark ages.

And then the consequences of eviction should be spelled out clearly to the owner.

If I were an owner, and I probably am through my pension fund, I would be asking for rent from the tennant until I could sell.

But there are too many intermediaries in this complex interconnected world for me, the owner, to make an executive decision.

And so the entire unstable edifice obeys the second law of thermodynamics, dies and rots.

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Germany Shoots Down ‘Dreams’ of Early End to Europe Debt Crisis


(For 10/17)

Just a few headlines:

  1. Germany Shoots Down ‘Dreams’ of Early End to Europe Sovereign-Debt Crisis
  2. Japan's Government Cuts View of Economy
  3. ECB Won’t Tolerate Lehman Rerun, Bank of Finland Deputy Says
  4. Unpaid bills take toll on business (Illinois)
  5. Unpaid state bills of more than $100M taking toll on central Illinois
  6. 'Shadow inventory' of homes could topple real-estate recovery
  7. Americans Double Up to Make Do
  8. Barclays Expects 'Triple-Dip' With Another 7% Drop in Home Prices


.......................I'll be away from the computer for the next day, so I won't be posting news for Tuesday morning (or reposting these headlines after Monday's Daily Digest is up).

mono's picture
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tell ém to eat cake...

I guess the french aristrocracy was way more sophisticated than the plebs that took the aristrocracies heads off during the french revolution.

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