Friday, December 26, 2008

Could States' Bankruptcy and Constitutional Convention Lead to Abolishment of U.S. Constitution as We Know It?

Lots of word flying around the 'Net about how we (USA) are real close to having the requisite number of States to convene a Constitutional Convention (see article below by Nancy Levant). I hear that the Convention would be able to make MAJOR changes to our Constitution and way of life.

The current economic “crisis” is the tool, the highly planned and patient tool, to set up the global governing bureaucracy for real and for certain with the second convening of the Constitutional Convention in the wings. The big wigs tried it before in 1976, and they are trying again, but this time having manufactured national bankruptcy as public fear-based appeasement.

The powers that be (whomever they may be from your perspective) may already have a new Constitution in place to replace our current one. I remember seeing this particular document in "Behold a Pale Horse" many years ago. I never forget anything associated with Santa Barbara.

In 1964, the Ford Foundation funded an outfit called the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions to write a new constitution for our nation. After 40 drafts, a staff of 100+ people, and at a cost of 2.5 million dollars a year, a decade later (1974) the Proposed Constitution for the Newstates of America was finished.

What does all of this mean? I have no clue, but a Newstates document like the one commissioned above certainly has followers somewhere. It will be interesting to see if the current financial crisis will cause regional disharmony among the States and the response.

Source: (Nancy Levant)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Many USA Retailers To Close in 2009 (No More Shopping Malls?)

I completely agree with the below article about the state of our retail establishments. I hope I am wrong. It will be sad to lose one of the last remaining pieces of my childhood -- the suburban shopping mall. Many great 1980s movies from Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Commando to Killbots occupied a place in the American shopping mall. If the retailers go belly up, then what will happen to our shopping malls? Only the strong will survive -- unless they ask for and get a gubment' bailout!

U.S. retailers will face a Darwinian fight for survival next year as they run out of cash as early as January and competition forces thousands of store closings, according to private-equity buyers and restructuring experts.

Probably 50,000 stores could close without any effect on consumer choice, Gregory Segall, a managing partner at buyout firm Versa Capital Management Inc., said yesterday during a panel discussion held at Bloomberg LP’s New York offices.

Source: Bloomberg

Monday, December 22, 2008

Hope for the Economy in 2009? (I'm Still Not Convinced)

It is great to have hope that our economy will rebound. I hope that things improve and our society moves into a new "golden age." I believe that we will eventually get to that point, but how many of us will survive the journey? Certain economists believe that things will improve in 2009.
But a panel of economists surveyed by says that — maybe, if all goes well — we could be closer to the end of this recession than the beginning. Now 12 months into a downturn that appears to be deepening, there are early signs that the elements may be coming into place for a convincing recovery. That “best case” forecast calls for the worst of the downturn easing by the middle of next year, with slow but steady growth in the second half of 2009. “We do have a number of forces that could come together to produce what could be a fairly strong recovery,” said Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at Global Insight.

Let's analyze some of things it said will trigger the recovery.
One of the major forces pushing the economy back on a growth track is a historic series of moves by the Federal Reserve to pump trillions of dollars into the financial system. Another is the huge package of tax cuts and government spending — some believe it could approach $1 trillion — that the incoming Obama administration could have in place by early next year.

How do you pump trillions of dollars into a financial system without some type of equivalent production (i.e., incomes earned for goods produced and services provided) for the amount pumped into the financial system? If you do not have some type equivalent production, then the pumped money is a fiction. It might as well be Monopoly money.

If I owe Citibank $200 and I only have $75, the only way I can make up the difference is by either (1) borrowing $125; (2) selling thing(s) I own of value for $125; or (3) working to earn an additional $125 in wages. I left one option out, because I am a law-abiding citizen. Nevertheless, if I wasn't a law-abiding citizen and if I had a fabulous printing press, I could print up the extra $125 I needed for Citibank. However, I would likely be visited by the Secret Service and sent for an extended stay to a stellar federal cross-bar motel. If I can't print up extra money for my bills, then why is the Federal Reserve allowed to print up money out of thin air and "pump it" into the economy?
Another is the huge package of tax cuts and government spending — some believe it could approach $1 trillion — that the incoming Obama administration could have in place by early next year.

Can someone in the President-elect's administration or supporter thereof please explain to me in specific terms how the administration plans to pay off a current $20+ trillion dollar deficit when it proposes both tax cuts and additional government spending? And saying that we will simply borrow the money from some foreign entity is not an acceptable answer.

Where is all this money coming from? Where? Where? It is being created out of thin air like someone has a genie lamp. Actions like that devalues the money already in the system. Putting an extra few trillion dollars will do nothing, but dilute the current value of the dollar in our pockets. Nevertheless, if you are printing up money from nothing, can you give me a bailout of my student loans? Sallie Mae will provide the pay-off amount.

Unfortunately, I do not see us coming out of this recession/depression for a very long time unless some unknown technology is created and released to the commercial sector where it then fuels the advent of an entirely new industry that sparks a new type of industrial revolution.

Someone call Contessa Brewer! She'll get to the bottom of all of this!

Source: MSNBC

VP Dick Cheney Owns Biden (Lets the World Know Who Has Absolute Power)

In a recent interview with Chris Wallace, VP Dick Cheney pretty states what everyone has already known. He is in control and doesn't care what anyone else thinks about the situation, because he is the biggest, baddest man on the block. VP Dick Cheney pretty much states that since the President has control of the nuclear codes, the President can do whatever he wants.
Cheney explained that the president's 24/7 access to nuclear codes in the event of an nuclear attack against the United States exemplifies the "nature of the world we live in."

"He could launch the kind of devastating attack the world has never seen," Cheney said. "He doesn't have to check with anybody, he doesn't have to call Congress, he doesn't have to check with the courts, he has that authority."

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Professional Sports (NFL, NBA, MLB & NHL) = The Canary in the Mine for Our Economy?

As our American economy seemingly implodes, I look for signs of it in my day-to-day interactions with the world. The signs are not as obvious here in Southern California or Atlanta, but I have seen signs of a weak economy in my hometown Memphis and in New Orleans. Retail establishments are boarded up or have been demolished for vacant lots.

One potential sign that came to me is the state and health of our professional sports leagues. Over the last 30 years, the major professional sports leagues (NBA, MLB, NFL and NHL) have generated enormous incomes and profits for owners, players, coaches and executives. The successful professional sports model is built on continuing success and growth. When I first started watching the NFL in 1979, teams such as the Carolina Panthers and Baltimore Ravens did not exist. The NBA has added and moved so many teams that it would hardly be recognizable to someone just watching for the first time since Magic's first year in '79-80.

If the economy is as bad as various people are stating in the media and print, then this bad economy will affect the professional sports world. Smaller entities are usually more affected by changes to the environment. A smaller sports league is going feel the effects faster than the larger sports leagues. It has already affected the Arena Football League, a league that had been around for two decades.
After days of speculation, the Arena Football League announced Monday that it will suspend the 2009 season in hopes of returning in 2010.

The decision was made by the league’s board of directors during a conference call Sunday night.

“Owners … recognize that, especially in light of the current unprecedented economic climate, the AFL, as a business enterprise, needs to be restructured if it is to continue to provide its unique brand of this affordable, fan-friendly sport,” acting commissioner Ed Policy said in a statement.

The major pro leagues are in still business and show no signs of effects from the economy on the surface. Teams are still signing players to record contracts. Nevertheless, there may be some cracks in the foundation as the NBA has issues this year with attendance.

Over all, N.B.A. attendance is flat — about a half-percent higher than at this point last season on a per-game basis. Cumulatively, arenas are at about 89 percent of capacity, on par with last season.

Also, what happens when corporations can no longer sign leases for luxury boxes due to lack of corporate funds and income? What happens when the corporation cannot buy the naming rights for the local sports arena? What happens when the television rights for the league are actually lower than previous deals? Will it ever happen? I do not know. The NFL will likely be the most immune to any economic effects, because it continually sets paid attendance records.

The NFL set a regular-season attendance record for the fifth year in a row, averaging more than 67,000 fans per game for the second consecutive year, the NFL announced.

However, if we start seeing teams cease operations, teams consolidate operations, decreased television licensing rights fees and/or cancellation of games in any one of the major professional sports leagues, then those particular things will be the proverbial canary in the mine to tell you the economy is indeed in freefall, because we love our sports!

Source: Kansas City Star; New York Times;

The Debt of the United States of America Approaches Insolvency

The hits just keep on hitting with this economy. Now we're approaching insolvency. I need to find Morpheus, so he can show me just how far down our economy rabbit hole will go.

In the early months of next year, when the official data are published, the United States will run a serious risk of insolvency. This would involve, in the first place, a valuation crisis for the dollar. After this, the United States could face a social crisis like that in Argentina in 2001. A crisis in U.S. public debt would likely have a severe impact on the Asian countries that are the main exporters to the United States, China first among them.

Source: Spero News

Protesters Riot at San Francisco Mall in Solidarity With Greek Uprising

Did you know that there was a riot at a San Francisco mall yesterday evening? Coming soon to a mall near you?

A band of demonstrators, many wearing black masks, stormed a bustling San Francisco mall Saturday evening, upending garbage cans and foliage and damaging crystal merchandise at one kiosk.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle

Commando Governator Terminates and Erases California State Workers' Pay and Jobs Like a Predator

In California's current budget crisis, Governor Schwarzenegger has ordered hiring freezes and pay cuts to the State's workers -- but the workers are not happy. California is currently in a huge budget crisis and could RUN OUT OF MONEY in February 2009 if the situation is not resolved.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Friday ordered a state hiring freeze and payroll cuts to conserve cash as California struggles to deal with a $42 billion budget deficit.The governor issued an executive order that requires state agencies to reduce payroll by 10 percent, which could lead to massive layoffs. He also ordered the state's 235,000 employees to take two days off a month without pay, starting Feb. 1.

Source: The Huffington Post

Tidal Waves Hit Pacific Atolls -- Villages Running Out of Food!

Why isn't the mainstream media reporting on this story, but spending hours talking about Casey and Caylee Anthony?
Reports reaching the Solomon Star say the Atolls of Ontong Java have been badly hit and people there are now running out of food. Reports from the two affected villages say since Monday last week they have been experiencing rough seas that eventually turned into a tidal wave.

Chief Peter Kalali from the House of Chiefs of Luaniua and Pelau in a letter dated 11th December 2008 to the Ministry of Home Affairs and the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) said the situation had affected the livelihood of the people.

Source: Solomon Star

Russia Is Going Back to Cuba - First Time Since Soviet Era!

For the first time in a long while, Russian warships were sent to Cuba. The speculation is that Moscow wanted to send a message to Washington about America's actions in the recent Georgia conflict. Are we headed for a new Cold War? Is the Monroe Doctrine still in effect? If so, would America be able to enforce it at this point?
Russian warships pulled into Havana yesterday (December 19, 2008) for the first time since the end of the Soviet era in the last port of call on an expedition designed to send a message to Washington about the military reach of Moscow.

Source: Times Online