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This is one of the things I like most about President-elect Donald Trump, he is a man who institutes change. Change keeps things moving with the times and is never boring. Change is the inevitable of life, and we can always count on change. So President-elect Trump excites me, as he will never allow stagnation in this Country again. I think the only kind of change we have witnessed in this Country for so long has been negative and alarming to the American people. We now can be excited at the prospect of change under our new incoming President.
The White House Press Corp is concerned that the change it foresees is anything but exciting. They are stunned by reports of a proposal by the Trump administration to eject reporters from their home in the West Wing. This is a move that, if carried out, would uproot decades of established protocol whereby journalists are allowed to work in the White House close to senior officials. I am sure they are sweating it right now, as the Trump Administration contemplates new ideas for Press protocol. Yet, Trump has the right to implement new changes to the old guard, as the old guard has not worked so well for those who voted for Trump. He knows this, and he is experiencing the same as We The People.
Trump claims that after suspicions that US Intelligence services were leaking information from classified meetings he was having with them, that he conducted his own sting operation to prove this was happening.
“I think it’s pretty sad when intelligence reports get leaked out to the press. First of all, it’s illegal. These are classified and certified meetings and reports,” Trump said during a press conference held at Trump Tower.
thecommonsenseshow.com / By Dave Hodges / January 16th, 2017
U.S. Park Police and D.C. police Wednesday afternoon investigated the two areas where the weapons were found. I have been waiting for a massive law enforcement response, given the timing and location of the following discoveries. Instead, all we are getting are crickets chirping with regard to the response of federal and local law enforcement.
The reason that this is significant because on January 15th, I received a highly credible tip that man was arrested in DC transporting a huge weapons cache in a truck. I have been told by a local official that the event is being covered up from the media and there is no federal involvement to their knowledge. Let’s review the following, of what is known, and evaluate local law enforcement as well as the Feds response to this situations which I believe pose a significant and potential threat to Donald Trump.
The Reported Details
The finding of weapons’ cache in two separate locations in the DC area, only a quarter of a mile from each other was so serious and concerning that local traffic on Canal Road was stopped during the investigation. But quickly the cover-up was initiated and the findings were quickly swept under the carpet.
Following a brief spike overnight (as China intervened in its equity market), crude prices slipped lower, testing towards a $51 handle after Saudi Arabia says OPEC is on track to wrap up its production curbs by the middle of the year, potentially leaving its aim of clearing a global oil glut unfinished.
As Bloomberg reports, OPEC and Russia won’t need to prolong output cuts beyond June because the agreed reductions will have already ended the oversupply in world crudemarkets, Saudi Minister of Energy and Industry Khalid Al-Falih said in Abu Dhabi on Monday. However, ending the deal by mid-year and restoring production would mean the surplus just starts building again, thwarting OPEC’s ambition of whittling down bloated oil inventories.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries said that draining off a stockpile “overhang” of more than 300 million barrels — enough to supply China for almost a month — was the main aim of supply curbs agreed with Russia and other producers. Twenty-four nations signed up to a joint cutback of 1.8 million barrels a day on Dec. 10.
In the latest indication that China is becoming increasingly unsettled by Trump’s relentless attacks on legacy diplomacy with China, and especially the “One China” policy, two leading state-run newspapers warned on Monday that Beijing will “take off the gloves” and take strong action if Trump continues to provoke Beijing over Taiwan once he assumes office.
The reaction was provoke by Trump’s latest US interview, in which he told the WSJ that the “One China” policy was up for negotiation. China‘s foreign ministry, in response, said “One China” was the foundation of China-U.S. ties and was non-negotiable.
“If Trump is determined to use this gambit in taking office, a period of fierce, damaging interactions will be unavoidable, as Beijing will have no choice but to take off the gloves,” the otherwise calm English-language China Daily said. It added that Beijing’s relatively measured response to Trump’s comments in the Wall Street Journal “can only come from a genuine, sincere wish that the less-than-desirable, yet by-and-large manageable, big picture of China-U.S. relations will not be derailed before Trump even enters office”.
But China should not count on the assumption that Trump’s Taiwan moves are “a pre-inauguration bluff, and instead be prepared for him to continue backing his bet”. “It may be costly. But it will prove a worthy price to pay to make the next U.S. president aware of the special sensitivity, and serious consequences of his Taiwan game,” said the national daily.
The far more fiery state-run nationalist tabloid, The Global Times, echoed the China Daily, saying Beijing would take “strong countermeasures” against Trump’s attempt to “impair” the “One China” principle.
armstrongeconomics.com / by Martin Armstrong / Jan 16, 2017
The collapse of the Clinton Foundation is in full swing demonstrating that this was all really about selling influence. All the bad press for the Clinton Foundation combined with Hillary’s loss has sent her political donations running for the hills. The Clinton Global Initiative was their pretend centerpiece to which they claimed its goal “convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.” This was their claimed effort to influence world leaders while, of course, raising cash for the Foundation.
John Hathaway of Tocqueville Funds says the physical gold market will defeat the paper gold market leading to a much higher price for the monetary metal in the coming months and years in his Tocqueville Gold Strategy Investor Letter (Fourth Quarter 2016 Investor Letter):
Gold rose 8.5% for the year while gold-mining stocks (XAU – Philadelphia Gold and Silver Index stocks) rose 75%. On an annual basis, results were highly satisfactory. However, there was considerable drama beneath the surface that left precious metals investors in a state of anxiety by year-end. Precious metals and mining shares rose sharply through August, and then spent the rest of the year giving back much of the first-half gains. The second half downtrend accelerated into early December, following the unexpected victory by Trump and a hawkish statement after the December Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting.
South Korea political crisis spilled over into the corporate sector overnight, when the country’s special prosecutor on Monday sought a warrant to arrest the head of Samsung Group, the country’s largest conglomerate, accusing him of paying multi-million dollar bribes to a friend of impeached President Park Geun-hye.
According to Reuters, investigators had grilled the head of Samsung, the world’s biggest maker of smartphones, flat-screen TVs and memory chips, Jay Y. Lee for 22 straight hours last week as a suspect in a corruption scandal, which last month led to parliament impeaching president Park.
The special prosecutor’s office accused Lee of paying bribes total 43 billion won ($36.42 million) to organizations linked to Choi Soon-sil, a friend of the president who is at the center of the scandal, in order to secure the 2015 merger of two affiliates and cement his control of the family business.
The 48-year-old Lee, who became the de facto head of the Samsung Group after his father, Lee Kun-hee, was incapacitated by a heart attack in 2014, was also accused of embezzlement and perjury, according to the prosecution’s application for an arrest warrant.
trueeconomics.blogspot.com / by Constantin Gurdgiev / Monday, January 16, 2017
When it comes to economic policy uncertainty, 2016 was a bad year for the Big 4 European states, except for one: Italy.
Consider the above chart showing indices of Economic Policy Uncertainty across Europe’s Big Four states, as represented by period averages across four main periods, plus 2016.
German economic policy uncertainty rose from 87.9 average for the period of 2002-2007 to 144.5 for the period of 2008-2011 and 152.1 over 2012-2015. In 2016, the index averaged 230.5. While not in itself indicative of a crisis, the trajectory is consistent with systemic rise in uncertainty, especially since 2016 was not a political outlier year (there were no major elections or external shocks, other than shocks related to German policy itself, such as the refugees crisis). That German index increase took place during one of the strongest years for growth and employment is, in itself, quite revealing.
The US may be closed, but nothing stands in the way of merger Monday, which today struck in Europe with the announcement that Italy’s Ray-Ban maker, Luxottica, and France’s lens company Essilor agreed to a €46 billion ($49 billion) merger to create a global eyewear giant with annual revenue of more than €15 billion.
The deal, one of Europe’s largest cross-border tie-ups, brings together Luxottica, the world’s top spectacles maker with brands such as Oakley and Ray-Ban, with Essilor, the world’s leading manufacturer of ophthalmic lenses.
“Finally … two products which are naturally complementary — namely frames and lenses — will be designed, manufactured and distributed under the same roof,” Luxottica’s 81-year-old founder Leonardo Del Vecchio said in a statement.
Del Vecchio, who returned to the helm of Luxottica two years ago after taking a back seat for the previous decade, will be CEO and executive chairman of the merged EssilorLuxottica, which will be listed in Paris. Del Vecchio will take a stake of between 31% and 38% in the merged group through his family holding Delfin, becoming the biggest shareholder. Voting rights will be capped at 31 percent. Delfin will contribute its 62 percent stake in Luxottica at a ratio of 1 share in the Italian group for every 0.461 Essilor shares. The French lens maker, a long-time supplier to the Italian group, will launch a mandatory exchange offer on all remaining Luxottica shares at the same ratio, with the aim of delisting Luxottica’s shares.
Even in “rich countries,” more and more people “are no longer willing to tolerate the status quo.”
As the global elite descend upon Davos for the World Economic Forum to rub elbows, Oxfam released a report today which it introduced in this way:
It details how big business and the super-rich are fueling the inequality crisis by dodging taxes, driving down wages and using their power to influence politics. It calls for a fundamental change in the way we manage our economies so that they work for all people, and not just a fortunate few.
Last year in its report, if figured that 62 people owned the same wealth as “the poorest half of the planet,” but this year more data became available. Had this data been available last year, it would have shown that 9 men owned as much as the poorest half of the planet. Now it’s down to just 8:
While US markets take the day off for MLK holiday, the rest of the trading world has been busy, perhaps nowhere more so than the sterling which continued its volatile session in advance of May’s pre-hard Brexit speech, falling below $1.20 for the first time since October after the Sunday Times said May is ready to withdraw from tariff-free trade with the region in return for the ability to curb immigration and strike commercial deals with other countries. As a result, overnight pound-dollar volatility surged the most since the summer, and breached just twice previously: ahead of the Brexit vote, and before the Bank of England’s July and August meetings.
The dollar rose, in an apparent bid for safety, rebounding after suffering its worst week since November when it was hit by a lack of clarity over the policies of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, whose inauguration is on Friday.
“(The movement) shows that people are looking ahead this week with Trump’s inauguration and discussions on Brexit. There is a lot of uncertainty moving forward,” Brian Lan, managing director at Singapore-based gold dealer GoldSilver Central, told Reuters.
Yields on low-risk German government bonds fell but those on Italian equivalents edged up after rating agency DBRS cut Italy’s credit rating after markets closed on Friday in a move that could raise borrowing costs for the country’s banks. Italy’s downgrade will mean Italian banks will have to pay more to borrow money from the European Central Bank when they use the country’s sovereign bonds as collateral. It may also make Italian debt less attractive for foreign buyers. German 10-year bond yields fell 2 basis points to 0.32 percent. Italian 10-year yields rose marginally to 1.90%.
theeconomiccollapseblog.com / By Michael Snyder / January 15th, 2017
Many are anticipating that a wonderful new era of peace and prosperity is just a few days away, but others are using terms such as “civil unrest” and “civil war” for what they believe is about to happen in America. Without a doubt, Donald Trump is one of the most electrifying politicians in modern American history, but he is also one of the most polarizing. So will the next four years bring us together as a nation, or will anger, frustration, strife and discord tear us much farther apart? It is being projected that extremely large crowds of supporters will attend Donald Trump’s inauguration on January 20th, but the mainstream media is also reporting that “hundreds of thousands of protesters” are on their way to Washington. Many on the far left are hoping to turn Trump’s inauguration into one of the biggest riots in U.S. history, but thousands of law enforcement personnel are going to do their very best to prevent that from happening.
There are sites on the Internet that are literally counting down the hours until Barack Obama leaves office. Knowing that his time is short, Obama seems determined to squeeze as much “change” out of his final hours as he possibly can. Just check out what the Washington Post says that he was able to accomplish on just one day last week…
On Thursday alone, the administration designated three new national monuments and expanded another two in sites including a forest in the Pacific Northwest and a school for freed slaves in South Carolina; took away one of the special immigration privileges Cubans arriving in the United States without visas have enjoyed for 50 years; announced sanctions designations against 18 senior Syrian officials for their role in the use of chlorine as a chemical weapon in 2014 and 2015; awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Vice President Biden; and accused Fiat Chrysler of cheating on national emission standards for some of its diesel trucks.
Turkish Airlines Flight 6491, a cargo plane, has crashed into a residential area near the Kyrgyzstan capital of Bishkek, killing at least 20 people and injuring others, according to local authorities say.
The Boeing 747 was flying from Hong Kong to Manas International Airport, which is located just northwest of the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek.
paulcraigroberts.org / Paul Craig Roberts / January 15, 2017
If Trump intends to survive, he must break the CIA into a thousand pieces as President John F. Kennedy intended before the CIA assassinated him. Trump must arrest for treason the neoconservatives and put them on trial. Trump must curtail NSA’s spying, which is in complete violation of the US Constitution, on all communications of all Americans. Trump’s oath of office is to the Constitution, not to war on the American public. Trump must ban all presstitute print and TV media from White House press conferences and only give credentials to the alternative Internet media. The print and TV media are operatives of the CIA and are totally devoid of integrity. Indeed, perhaps the presstitutes should be arrested for treason and put on trial along with the neoconservatives and the CIA.
If Trump fails to take these decisive actions, he is too weak to achieve any change.
The McClatchy news service is the only element in the mainstream media that sometimes reports honestly. Below is a McClatchy report that a Russian tech expert, whose name was used to give credibility to the notorious fake news dossier, says the dossier is a fake report.
“A Russian tech expert whose name and company are mentioned in the now-notorious document alleging connections between the Donald Trump campaign and Russian hackers says no intelligence officers have ever contacted him about the accusations, which he says are false.”
news.goldseek.com / By Thomas Furman / Monday, 16 January 2017
In recent days I have seen an increase of gold-positive articles finding their way onto my computer screen. Writers from Motley Fools to Bloomberg are all touting gold’s inevitable rise. I have read these articles and noted all of the same, familiar tone…this time it’s different and gold will continue to rise from here so buy quickly or you will miss out…to the moon I suppose. Yes, I believe gold will one day take out $2000.00 mark but not today, not tomorrow, and not this year. Before the gold bugs start crying and demand an old fashion lynching please here me out.
A Dose of Skepticism
From the start of this current rally I’ve been a little skeptical. Note the daily chart was forming a falling right triangle, a bearish formation, before moving higher. This same formation occurred in October before moving higher and that ultimately reversed after the presidential election. (By the way gold was going to sell off regardless who was elected. The price action on November 9th clear demonstrates the huge selling/shorting was well planned. If someone thinks it was a knee-jerk reactions to the election outcome they’re naive. No one sells short billions of dollars on a whim when gold was moving so violently higher in aftermarket trading.) To believe the current price action is a meaningful move higher I would have preferred to see a longer consolidation in the $1120 – $1140 area. Ideally, a move to the mid-$1170s, reversing, and retesting the lows around $1125 before moving higher would have been a much stronger signal the low was in. At this point I’m convinced we will have a reversal but it’s more likely the Shorts will be done covering and proverbial rug will be pulled from underneath the few remaining gold bulls and price will fall through $1120. A break of $1120 will signal the short-term support is broken and the Shorts will pile in and drive the price to the $1080 area before taking a break and consolidating.
The Sea-based X-Band Radar has deployed out of Pearl Harbor after North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un recently said his country was in the “final stages” of test-launching an intercontinental ballistic missile. Media sources reported that the SBX was being sent about 2,000 miles northwest of Hawaii to watch for a possible North Korean launch in coming months. The Pentagon downplayed the floating radar’s Monday departure.
As The Honolulu Star Advertiser reports, dispatching the “SBX” out to sea sends “a very clear strategic message of deterrence to the ICBM threat of the North Korean leader that has intensified since first announced on Jan. 1,” said Riki Ellison, chairman of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance, a Virginia-based nonprofit that advocates a strong U.S. missile defense.
Media sources reported that the SBX was being sent about 2,000 miles northwest of Hawaii to watch for a possible North Korean launch in coming months. The Pentagon downplayed the floating radar’s Monday departure.
“The SBX’s current deployment is not based on any credible threat; however, we cannot discuss specifics for this particular mission while it is underway,” Navy Cmdr. Gary Ross, a Defense Department spokesman, said in an email.
armstrongeconomics.com / by Martin Armstrong / Jan 16, 2017
Al Sharpton seems to be doing whatever he can to mislead minorities in a very dangerous way. He has been organizing civil rights activists vowing to defend what they say are hard-fought gains in voting rights and criminal justice prior to the presidency of Donald Trump. Sharpton is not stupid. He knows what he is doing. Why did he not do this against Obama who kept defending police? Why now?
It was the Clintons who signed in the Mandatory Miniumum sentences. Since the Clintons signed that act, the prison population has more than doubled. It use to be a prosecutor did not care if you went to prison as long as he won the conviction. Then it all changed. Prosecutors get no credit for their career UNLESS someone goes to prison.
marctomarket.com / by Marc Chandler / January 16, 2017
The UK government strategy for Brexit is becoming clear. Even though roughly half of UK immigrants come from non-EU countries, in orders to control the other half, the UK will leave the single market. It will also not be subject to the European Court of Justice. A week ago Prime Minister May suggested this and sterling fell below $1.22 for the first time since last October. The general thrust of the comments was echoed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer Hammond over the weekend, with an added seemingly implicit threat to compete through lower corporate taxes if the EU negotiations force the UK to seek other comparative advantages.
Sterling gapped lower and proceeded to fall to almost $1.1985 before recovering a bit. It has entered the gap, which extends to last Friday’s low a little above $1.2120. The thin conditions in early Asia may have exacerbated the move, but the direction was clear. It risks oversimplification, but a hard exit, which is understood to be the loss of access to the single market, is understood as negative for sterling, while developments that slow the process (like the Supreme Court decision expected next week) or cushion it (like a fast trade agreement with the US, that President-elect Trump indicated over the weekend) are seen as supportive for sterling.
zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden / Jan 15, 2017 8:26 PM
Just hours after John Brennan lashed out at the president-elect in an interview with Fox News, Donald Trump has responded by suggesting that the outgoing CIA Director may have been behind the publication last week of unverified and salacious intelligence connecting the president-elect to Russia….
"Anyone who claims to stand for free markets, free trade, and limited government but who attempts to defend the existence or importance of the Federal Reserve or central banking is a liar. Either you support free markets and freedom of pricing or you support central bank price-fixing and creeping socialism. There is no third way or middle road — socialism and the free market are mutually incompatible. A little bit of socialism in the form of price-fixing is like a little bit of gangrene, if left unchecked it will eventually infect and kill the whole." - Paul-Martin Foss via The Mises Institute