Fractured Lands (jdargis)
History never flows in a predictable way. It is always a result of seemingly random currents and incidents, the significance of which can be determined — or, more often, disputed — only in hindsight. But even accounting for history’s capricious nature, the event credited with setting off the Arab Spring could hardly have been more improbable: the suicide by immolation of a poor Tunisian fruit-and-vegetable seller in protest over government harassment. By the time Mohamed Bouazizi succumbed to his injuries on Jan. 4, 2011, the protesters who initially took to Tunisia’s streets calling for economic reform were demanding the resignation of Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, the nation’s strongman president for 23 years. In subsequent days, those demonstrations grew in size and intensity — and then they jumped Tunisia’s border. By the end of January, anti-government protests had erupted in Algeria, Egypt, Oman and Jordan. That was only the beginning.
How is it house prices have gone up so much anyways? You can thank the Federal Reserve for that. The Federal Reserve has been cutting the FFR (Federal Funds Rate) since 1981. The 30yr mortgage (roughly linked to the 10yr Treasury yield + fees) has been falling with each cut to the FFR along the way (chart below). If your curious why rates rose so much and have fallen so long, so low, and will likely only keep falling.
Thomas Friedman Goes To The Wall (Michael W.)
Friedman is conceding that inequality and unfairness are legitimate concerns. He’s just saying that now that the people most concerned about these issues have been beaten at the polls, we can safely go back to ignoring them and letting the beneficiaries of inequality worry about how and when to fix it.
The three — two men and a woman — had been stopped at a stop sign in the 8000 block of South Marshfield Avenue when the gunman opened fire, police said. The van took off, made a left turn on 78th Street and stopped, police said.
The 45-year-old man was shot in the back and forearm. He was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn and was pronounced dead, police said.
Raiffeisen Gmund am Tegernsee may be a tiny bank that’s only introducing penalties to well-off customers — it says fewer than 140 will be affected — but in principle the ECB’s negative deposit rate was meant to encourage spending and investment in the euro area’s sluggish economy, not to tax thrifty Bavarians. A spokesman for the Frankfurt-based central bank declined to comment.
Breaking The American Consumer (Tiffany D.)
Last week, for instance, the jobs number was, if you believe the media coverage, so exciting you’d think you were watching Meg Ryan’s famous Katz Deli scene from When Harry Met Sally. And, yet, just two months earlier, the number was so dismal you’d think you were reading in the media about Travis shooting Old Yeller.
Holter goes on to point out, “They have purposely diluted the price of gold in order to portray a strong dollar. . . . The reason they need to portray a strong dollar is to continue confidence in the system. It allows dollars to continue to be accepted. It also allows the U.S. Treasury to turn around and continue to borrow. That’s not working so well because the Federal Reserve has had to step up and buy major portions of auctions.”
The Untold History Of Black Gold (Taki T.)
In this report we revisit the history of oil in the region and, in particular, we look at how and when oil began to shape the political strategies of the West. Although we focus on the events of the 20th Century, we can trace the change of political doctrines to the weakening of the British Empire, due to the rise of the German “Kaiserreich”. The two powers competed on expanding their spheres of influence on the world map, until they met on the battlefields of World War I. This is when Mackinder’s theory of a divided Europe and Asia, competing for control of the resource-rich region of the Heartland, began to materialize. This theory remains valid today and the 20th century bore witness to how wars were fought to gain access to one primary resource: “black gold”.
Gold & Silver
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