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    Daily Digest 5/4 – U.S Gold Scrap Market Drying Up, Oil Price Collapse Is ‘Permanent

    by DailyDigest

    Thursday, May 4, 2017, 4:26 PM


GOP Sets Do-Or-Die Vote to Deliver on Obamacare Repeal Promise (jdargis)

“We’re going to bring premiums down” and “get insurers back into the markets,” Representative Greg Walden, a Republican from Oregon, told MSNBC on Thursday morning. Walden was one of a handful of lawmakers who met with Trump on Wednesday about an amendment that would add $8 billion to help insure people with pre-existing conditions, a measure designed to encourage more lawmakers to vote for the bill. “I think we’re on the right track here.”

Even if the bill manages to pass the House, it faces a very tough road in the Senate. At least eight Senate Republicans are strongly opposed to different elements of the measure, which also faces potential procedural hurdles.

Best Investment Practices? (Axel M.)

If many want to buy insurance, someone needs to write insurance. The one thing more profitable than buying stocks may well have been to write insurance. Funds that “sell volatility”, amongst others, have been amongst the best performers in the first quarter. Mind you, we do not recommend you touch any such product with a broomstick unless you know exactly what you are doing and able to stomach some serious losses. The theory behind many of these funds is that you collect what amounts to an insurance premium when volatility is low; the periods when you have to pay up are short and intense, but those setbacks are ultimately temporary.

Citizens don’t have ‘absolute’ right over their bodies, privacy complaint is ‘bogus’ – Indian govt (lambertad)

“It is not meant to track anyone. The purpose is not to create Uncle Sam who will keep snooping. It is meant to make India a tax-compliant society and ensure that the benefits of welfare schemes reach the poor.”

The court told the official that the examples given by him were not appropriate, adding that a balance had to be kept between an individual's right and the state's actions.

The Danger Of 'Black Velvet' Stocks (Tiffany D.)

As the strategist noted, there’s no new investment tool or category. It’s just the way the vast majority of Americans have been convinced to invest their money: Set up an investment account, and tell the brokerage’s computer system that you want to buy X amount of ETFs or similar passive mutual funds each month.

You're Not Going To Believe What I'm About To Tell You (MAV)

This comic was inspired by this three-part series on the backfire effect from the You Are Not So Smart Podcast.

Why Did The Tourist Cross The Ocean? (bobwise32952)

I hope to see the big, classic mats of Sargassum, ten feet wide and hundreds of yards long, typical of the Sargasso sea. The weed and many fish and crabs that live in it spend their entire life cycle at sea; eels migrate here from the coasts of America and Europe to spawn in this "Rainforest of the Ocean." But the mats only hang together when wind, wave and current are right. On another voyage through the Sargasso, I saw only isolated clumps.

Debt Is Financial Life? Nonsense (GE Christenson)

Yes, the total U.S. increases debt rapidly – about 9% per year on average since 1971. A graph of U.S. national debt looks similar and shows about the same rate of increase.

Gold bullion and coins are NOT debt and have no counter-party risk, in contrast to debt based assets. But who cares about gold?

U.S GOLD SCRAP MARKET DRYING UP: Americans Pawned Off Their Best Asset To Go Further Into Debt (yogmonster)

Because 45% of Americans are paying up to half of their monthly income to pay down credit cards and debt, they can’t use this income to purchase new goods and services. Thus, a staggering amount of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has been brought forward… thanks to easy credit and credit cards.

Oil price collapse is 'permanent'; analyst says fossil fuel has had its day (yogmonster)

In the past, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has faced down criticism that its global energy market forecasts have overestimated the role of oil and underplayed the boom in renewable energy sources. But last month the tone changed. The agency warned oil and gas companies that failing to adapt to the climate policy shift away from fossil fuels and towards cleaner energy would leave a total of $1 trillion in oil assets and $300bn in natural gas assets stranded.

Saudi Power Struggle Could Destabilize The Entire Middle East (Michael K.)

The increased internal power struggle, in which Mohammed bin Salman and his allies have the upper-hand, doesn’t bode well for the months to come. Stability on political and security levels are only possible if opposition elsewhere is countered. To quell political (or royal) discord, King Salman’s government must continue to push for higher oil prices and revenues. This will present the Kingdom with a major challenge. As prices are still floundering around $50 per barrel, Saudi Arabia will have to use all of its power and international influence to get a grip on volatile oil markets. Riyadh will need a continuous influx of cash to support higher government expenses, subsidies, and salaries while also investing in the ongoing economic diversification projects. An OPEC production cut extension is the only option.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 5/3/17

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

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  • Thu, May 04, 2017 - 8:57pm



    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 03 2014

    Posts: 514

    Low Oil prices? Here we go again!

    Rig activity is up all the way along the WSB as cash strapped drillers continue to use lower break even prices to justify the activity. Don’t kid yourselves. It is all about short term survival. A few extra bucks a barrel can move a lot of activity in the patch. But really keep your eye on inventories. Even Memorial Day weekend is not going to put the squeeze on inventories. You go where the cash flow is. The EagleFord and the Permian may not be empty, but they sure can produce when they have to.
    And other things are going to be working against prices:

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  • Fri, May 05, 2017 - 2:20am



    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1436

    FBI report finds officers "de-policing" amid anti-cop hostility

    An unclassified FBI study on last year’s cop-killing spree found officers are “de-policing” amid concerns that anti-police defiance fueled in part by movements like Black Lives Matter has become the “new norm.”
    “Departments — and individual officers — have increasingly made the decision to stop engaging in proactive policing,” said the report by the FBI Office of Partner Engagement obtained by The Washington Times.
    The report, “Assailant Study — Mindsets and Behaviors,” said that the social-justice movement sparked by the 2014 death of 18-year-old Michael Brown at the hands of an officer in Ferguson, Missouri, “made it socially acceptable to challenge and discredit the actions of law enforcement.”
    FBI spokesman Matthew Bertron said the study was written in April.
    “Nearly every police official interviewed agreed that for the first time, law enforcement not only felt that their national political leaders [publicly] stood against them, but also that the politicians’ words and actions signified that disrespect to law enforcement was acceptable in the aftermath of the Brown shooting,” the study said.
    As a result, “Law enforcement officials believe that defiance and hostility displayed by assailants toward law enforcement appears to be the new norm.”
    The report examined 50 of the 53 incidents last year in which officers were killed in the line of duty, excluding the three cases that involved minors or perpetrators who remain unknown.
    Most of the assailants who used deadly force against officers did so in an effort to avoid being taken into custody, but 28 percent were motivated by hatred of police and a desire to “kill law enforcement,” in some cases fueled by social and political movements.
    “The assailants inspired by social and/or political reasons believed that attacking police officers was their way to ‘get justice’ for those who had been, in their view, unjustly killed by law enforcement,” the study said.
    The perpetrators said their animus toward police was based on their own experiences as well as “what they heard and read in the media about other incidents involving law enforcement shootings…”

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  • Fri, May 05, 2017 - 6:30am



    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jul 30 2009

    Posts: 2933

    Puerto Rico Collapse Shows Debts Seen as Ironclad May Not Be

    Puerto Rico Collapse Shows Debts Seen as Ironclad May Not Be

    BloombergQuint-22 hours ago
    “Municipal debt, state debt, federal debt, sovereign debt is not without risk. … which oversees $5.7 billion of municipal bonds, including insured Puerto Rico debt.

    Puerto Rico is the frightening Ghost of Illinois Future

    Chicago Tribune-16 hours ago
    Puerto Rico is what a debt-fueled nightmare looks like. Total indebtedness includes $74 billion in bond debt and $49 billion in unfunded pension obligations.

    Puerto Rico Defaults: Are Illinois And New Jersey Next?

    Seeking Alpha-May 4, 2017
    … and Whitebox that according to Bloomberg hold one third of Puerto Rico’s debt (see Bloomberg article: Puerto Rico Files For Historic $70 Debt Restructuring.).

    Corporate China braces for credit crunch as onshore bond issuance …

    Reuters-4 hours ago
    In March, China’s banks made 1.02 trillion yuan in new loans, but that is down … “There is a wave of debt repayments due between the second quarter of 2017 …

    China’s Renewed Drive to Tame Its Debt Pile Starts to Bite

    Bloomberg-8 hours ago
    The recent regulatory moves erased more than $300 billion of stock-market value and sent bond yields to the highest level in nearly two years as investors …

    Toronto house price gains not sustainable -Bank of Canada’s Poloz

    Reuters-15 hours ago
    … signs of speculation in the hot Toronto market, which some fear is a bubble. … years to cool the market and prevent home buyers from taking on too much debt.

    County pension system staring $38 million deficit in the face

    Kdminer-1 hour ago
    County pension system staring $38 million deficit in the face … and caps the increase at 2 percent, saving about $1.5 billion over 30 years for the retirement trust.


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  • Fri, May 05, 2017 - 8:15am



    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1837

    South Korean THAAD is actually aimed at China

    (ht to Time2Help)
    The Korean [situation] is a smokescreen.
    True, the Trump administration is milking the situation for all its worth, but that doesn’t mean that they want a war with the North. That’s not it at all.  Washington wants to deploy its controversial THAAD anti-missile system to South Korea, but it needs a pretext to do so. Hence, the ominous threat of an “unstable, nuclear-armed North Korea”, that’s all the justification Washington needed to get its new weapons system deployed. Mission Accomplished.
    But the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system (THAAD) isn’t aimed at North Korea, it’s aimed at China, and China knows it which is why it has protested its deployment repeatedly. The US wants to surround China and Russia with military bases and missile systems that are integrated into its broader nuclear weapons system. These lethal systems are a crucial part of Washington’s plan to pivot to Asia and rule the world into the next century.

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  • Fri, May 05, 2017 - 8:59am



    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1837

    The Terrible Dilemma of the Police

    Tom’s article above brings to mind the terrible dilemma police officers are in and the role that they play in society.  (I’ll touch on only one aspect here.)
    1.  On the one hand, we need a rule of law and the enforcement arm of the law, the police, to have civilization.  Without that, it is the wild wild west — every person tasked with defending themselves and protecting their own property.  This is a system where the least powerful are overrun and the most aggressive and combat capable can dominate.  Very bad.
    2.  And on the other hand, we have social structures that have been tweaked repeatedly by the oligarchy so that some are unjust or predatory.  The unjustly treated masses correctly sense that they are being screwed, get mad, and the urge arises to fight off the oligarchy. 
    But the oligarchy is hidden.  Who exactly was it that made the albuterol inhaler that my asthmatic child needs so expensive that we cannot buy it?  Who engineered the system so that the interest income on savings so meager that I am evicted from my home in retirement years? 
    What we SEE is the police officer coming to our home to enforce the social structures.  So we fight against the police when our opposition is actually with the predation of the oligarchy.
    This is no small issue.  But the police will have to think very carefully about the role the wish to play in the conflict between the outraged masses and the predatory oligarchy.

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  • Fri, May 05, 2017 - 10:08am

    Reply to #4


    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3109


    So to be clear, the Chinese aren’t complaining about the THAAD interceptors, which only have a radius of about 120 miles.  They are complaining about the THAAD’s dual-purpose radar system, the TPY-2, which is too flexible for its own good.
    Here’s a site that talks in detail about how the TPY-2 works.  You don’t have to be a BMD geek to get through it, but it probably helps.
    So for the TPY-2, changing its mode of operation from terminal mode to forward based mode greatly lengthens the range of the radar, at the expense of being able to track many fewer targets, and only targets that are large.  (That’s apparently a radar trade-off thing; you can either track lots of little objects close in, or just a few large objects much further away).
    When the TPY-2 is in terminal mode, it only covers the Korean peninsula.  But in forward based mode, the TPY-2 can look deep into China, monitoring missile launches, and passing the data it collects to the global BMD system the US has constructed.
    It takes four hours to convert the radar from the benign terminal mode to the more objectionable forward based mode.
    The punchline:
    The above discussion shows that while the United States’ argument that THAAD’s range while operating in its intended terminal mode is very limited is plausible, so is the Chinese claim that the radar is physically capable of observing missile flights deep within its territory.  While China would surely be able to monitor which mode the radar is operating in, there does not appear to be any technical or legal barrier to prevent it from being quickly converted from terminal to forward-based mode.

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  • Fri, May 05, 2017 - 2:32pm

    Reply to #5
    James Knight

    James Knight

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2009

    Posts: 63

    Have you tried ordering your

    Have you tried ordering your medicines from abroad Sandpuppy? Here in the UK an online chemist charges £3.73 for a salbutamol asthma inhaler.
    I looked to see if they would ship to the USA, but it says not. Perhaps you have friends or family here who could help?

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