Is The US About To Go Into Another Pointless, Unconstitutional, Never-Ending War With Venezuela?

Is the United States about to be dragged into another pointless war that will drag on for years?  Have we learned nothing from the wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq?  When Juan Guaido boldly declared himself the new leader of Venezuela during an opposition rally on January 23rd, everybody realized that something was up.  There is no way that he ever would have done that unless he knew in advance that the United States was going to publicly back him.  And when John Bolton appeared at a White House briefing with “5,000 troops to Colombia” scribbled on a yellow note pad, it became exceedingly clear what was about to happen.  Diplomatic pressure would be used to try to force Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro from power, but if that didn’t work then regime change would be achieved by force.

Maduro has seen this playbook before, and he has told the Venezuelan people that if “the North American empire attacks us, we will have to defend ourselves”.  He is officially freaked out, and for good reason.

The push toward war is officially on, and over the weekend Donald Trump told CBS reporter Margaret Brennan that sending U.S. troops to Venezuela is “an option” that is being considered…

MARGARET BRENNAN: What would make you use the U.S. military in Venezuela? What’s the national security interest?

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Well, I don’t want to say that. But certainly it’s something that’s on the – it’s an option.

Yes, Nicolas Maduro is an absolutely horrible leader, but do we get to overthrow the governments of other countries just because we don’t like who is in charge?

And how would you feel if somebody else decided to attack us because they don’t like who is in the White House?

The U.S. was the first major power to recognize Juan Guaido as the “legitimate” president of Venezuela, and now the UK and most other European nations have also backed Guaido.

But Russia and China continue to back Maduro, and so that sets up a very interesting situation.

Will the western powers go ahead with their plans for regime change even though the international community is divided?

In particular, Russia has a very strong incentive to keep Maduro in power.  The following comes from Zero Hedge

“Russia is now so deeply invested in the Maduro regime that the only realistic option is to double down,” writes senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center Alexander Gabuev.

He details in a Financial Times op-ed that Moscow-based state oil giant Rosneft owns two offshore gas fields in Venezuela and further has “stakes in assets boasting more than 20m tonnes of crude.” But as embattled President Nicolas Maduro faces US-led efforts to oust him in favor of opposition leader Juan Guaido, billions are on the line for Moscow making its interest in preserving the regime run deep.

So just like in Syria and Ukraine, the U.S. and Russia once again find themselves on opposite sides in a very tense conflict.

This crisis could end very quickly if Maduro steps down, but that isn’t going to happen.  In fact, he was quite defiant when the major European powers decided to recognize Guaido…

He also rejected European calls for elections, saying: “We don’t accept ultimatums from anyone. I refuse to call for elections now – there will be elections in 2024. We don’t care what Europe says.”

And he warned Trump that this will be a war that “will leave the presidency stained with blood”

“Stop. Stop, Trump! Hold it right there! You are making mistakes that will leave your hands covered in blood and you will leave the presidency stained with blood,” Maduro warned during a combative interview with the Spanish journalist Jordi Évole. “Why would you want a repeat of Vietnam?

That certainly doesn’t sound like someone that intends to throw in the towel.  Maduro has the Venezuelan military and the Venezuelan police solidly behind him, and former State Department official Eric Farnsworth thinks that it is unlikely that Maduro will leave without violence…

“If people are not prepared to take steps designed to support the nascent Guaido government, this could flop and that would be a huge setback,” Farnsworth said. “Does that mean the ultimate answer is U.S. troops? I don’t think that’s a healthy conversation to have. If Maduro wants to have U.S. troops at his doorstep, he’ll start targeting U.S. citizens.”

Farnsworth said the only scenario where Maduro is pressured to leave without violence involves Russia and China becoming convinced that Maduro’s potential successor would be better for them than the status quo and working with the international community on a transition plan. Russia and China continue to recognize Maduro, and Russia has sent aircraft to Venezuela amid reports that Maduro is looking to remove gold reserves from the country.

If the U.S. wants Guaido to be successful, he is going to need military help, and that would mean a full-blown invasion of Venezuela.

A full-blown invasion of Venezuela would be an ugly, bloody war.  Without a doubt, the U.S. would ultimately win, but global opinion would turn against us very rapidly just like it did during the wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq.

We live at a time of wars and rumors of wars, and hopefully, this will just turn out to be one of those rumors.

Because going to war with Venezuela is one of the stupidest ideas that I have heard in a very long time, and President Trump must not do it.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

We Just Saw Something That We Will Never, Ever See Again…

In the chaotic aftermath of New England’s 13-3 win over the Rams on Sunday, Tom Brady was clearly the center of attention.  Even though he had definitely not played his best game, and even though his teammate Julian Edelman was voted MVP of the Super Bowl, it seemed like virtually everyone was striving to get to Brady in the middle of the field at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta once the game had ended.  He was greeted with hugs and kisses by his teammates, by his opponents, by Coach Belichick and even by Patriots owner Bob Kraft.  No quarterback had ever won a Super Bowl at age 41, and everyone understands that the clock is ticking on Tom Brady’s football career.  This could be Brady’s last turn on the Super Bowl stage, and the gravity of the moment seemed to weigh very heavily on the Patriots and their fans throughout the game.  If Brady lost, he would be remembered as a Hall of Fame quarterback that lost his final two Super Bowls, but if he won he would forever be remembered as the quarterback with six Super Bowl rings.

Overall, Tom Brady has reached the Super Bowl nine times as the quarterback of the Patriots.  That is a number that no quarterback will ever equal.

And the NFL is set up in such a way that it is extremely difficult for one team to stay on top.  Losing teams get higher picks in the college draft, and the salary cap ensures that all teams have roughly the same amount of money to spend on players.

In addition, winning teams always play more difficult schedules the next year, and so it is just very, very hard to maintain a high level of success for an extended period of time.

But the Patriots have found a way to do it for nearly two decades, and the two constants have been quarterback Tom Brady and coach Bill Belichick.

In reality, this Super Bowl belonged to Bill Belichick far more than it did to Tom Brady.  During the regular season the Rams were one of the highest scoring offenses in the league, but on Sunday evening they did not score a single touchdown.  The only other Super Bowl team not to score a touchdown was the 1971 Dolphins.

So the truth is that the defense was the major reason why New England won the game, but now Tom Brady has his sixth Super Bowl ring, and nobody will ever be able to take that away from him.

Yes, it was kind of a boring game, but in the end that won’t be what we remember.

What we will remember is that this was the final Super Bowl victory for the greatest quarterback of all time.

According to Elias Sports Bureau, here are some of the new records that were established on Sunday…

Most games, winning team – 6, Tom Brady

Oldest starting QB, winning team – 41, Tom Brady

Most games, winning team, head coach – 6, Bill Belichick

Oldest head coach, winning team – 66, Bill Belichick

Fewest points, game, winning team – 13, New England

Fewest touchdowns, game, both teams – 1, New England (1) vs. L.A.Rams (0)

Fewest PATs, game, both teams – 1, New England (1) vs. L.A.Rams (0)

Most consecutive drives ending with a punt, game, team – 8, L.A.Rams

The Rams played really poorly on offense on Sunday, and a big reason for that was the fact that New England had far more fans at the game than L.A. did.

During the game-deciding drive in the fourth quarter, chants of “Brady, Brady, Brady” reverberated throughout Mercedes-Benz Stadium…

United chants of “Brady, Brady, Brady” showered the field from the majority of the 70,000 fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium during the defining drive of Super Bowl LIII on Sunday in Atlanta.

And the future Hall of Famer came through once again, guiding the New England Patriots to a 13-3 win against the Los Angeles Rams and snatching his record sixth Vince Lombardi trophy.

Of course, things were very different across the rest of the country.  After such an extended period of success, the Patriots have a lot of NFL fans that hate them, and this was reflected in public opinion polls that were taken before the game

A recent Scott Rasmussen poll found that 61 percent of Americans will be cheering on the Rams on Sunday. Of that number, 51 percent said they did not care about Los Angeles but were just keen to see the Patriots lose.

“In Boston, we win a lot,” Dave Maccarone, a Patriots fan who attends three or four games a season, told Reuters. “The typical New England fan is spoiled and it’s easy to hate a fan like that.”

But whether you love them or you hate them, hopefully, you can respect what Tom Brady has been able to accomplish.  Going to nine Super Bowls and winning six of them is an incredible achievement, and there will never be another quarterback like him.

I have to admit that I have always liked the Rams, and I was a big fan of the “Greatest Show Of Turf” team that Tom Brady beat to win his first Super Bowl.  At the time, I thought that Brady and the Patriots were a fluke.  But this time around I was rooting for the Patriots, and I was very pleased that they won.

However, during the aftermath of the game, my wife asked me why I didn’t seem happy.  After all, my team had just won the Super Bowl and Tom Brady had just secured his place in football history forever.

Was it just because the “Patriots era” is ending that I was feeling quite melancholy, or was it something deeper than that?

As I sit here, to me it feels like this is the beginning of the end for an entire era in American history.  Just like we will never see another quarterback like Tom Brady, many believe that we will never see another era of peace, prosperity and partying like the one that we have all been enjoying.

And just like the Patriots, America feels like it is on top of the world right now, but our clock is ticking too.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Nancy Pelosi Essentially Guaranteed Another Government Shutdown When She Said This…

Federal workers need to be prepared for more pain.  If President Trump and Congress cannot make a deal, there will probably be another very painful government shutdown in just a couple of weeks.  Even though he agreed to temporarily reopen the government, President Trump made it abundantly clear that there would be no long-term deal without wall funding, and that wall funding is supposed to be part of the current negotiation process in Congress.  But according to Nancy Pelosi, that isn’t even on the table, and she told a press conference on Thursday that there is “not going to be any wall money in the legislation”…

“We’re not having a negotiation now — over this right now. There’re having a negotiation over it in there. There’s not going be any wall money in the legislation. However, if they have some suggestions about some localities where technology, some infrastructure, as I’ve said, about the ports of entry, they might need some ports of entry, some roads — that’s part of the negotiation.”

Pelosi’s wall-money refusal comes just hours after Trump tweeted, “The Wall is getting done one way or the other!”

Of course, this is perfectly consistent with what Pelosi has been saying all along.  She has pledged to never give Trump a single penny for a border wall, and she intends to never, ever move from that position.

But on Thursday she suggested that Trump could call Normandy fencing a “wall” if he would prefer to do so

“Three hundred of them are Normandy fences,” she said. “They go like this, do you know what a Normandy fence is?” she asked, crossing her hands to show what they look like.

“Three hundred miles of this so that the cars cannot go by. If the president wants to call that a wall,” she shrugged, “he can call it a wall. He’s referencing what we already have.”

The Pelosi press conference was another glaring example of why we need congressional term limits.  Pelosi was incoherent throughout, and she had many observers openly wondering about her mental stability.  The following comes from the American Mirror

What’s wrong with Nancy Pelosi?

The House Speaker spoke to reporters today for only about 21 minutes, but there were plenty of strange moments as she botched words, suffered face spasms and brain freezes as she attacked President Trump’s proposed border wall and his leadership during the recent partial government shutdown.

If you have not seen video of her terrible performance yet, you can view it right here.

But even though she can barely put two words together, Pelosi is still definitely a tough politician, and now the ball is in Donald Trump’s court.

He basically has three options.  One option would be to simply sign whatever deal Congress puts in front of him even though it doesn’t have money for a border wall.  Thankfully, Trump seemed to completely close the door on that option during remarks to the press

He again vowed that if there’s no money for his wall, there’s no deal.

‘If they don’t have a wall I don’t even want to waste my time reading what they have,’ he said of the bipartisan committee working on a solution for border security.

His second option would be to veto the deal, and that would set up a very interesting scenario.  There are some that believe that there are enough Republicans willing to override the veto and keep the government open.  The following comes from Jim Newell

Overriding Trump on the wall is a place where congressional Republicans, who know their base, are loath to go. But they also know that avoiding another shutdown is, as Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts told Politico, an “absolute necessity.” Though McConnell publicly played the role of lockstep Trump ally during the shutdown, he has made no secret since it ended that he thought it was a dumb idea all along. For years after the 2013 shutdown, for which Republicans took blame, McConnell’s favorite saying when the prospect of another shutdown came along was that “there’s no education in the second kick of a mule.” At his Tuesday press conference, when asked about the possibility of a shutdown after Feb. 15, he amended his statement, saying “there’s no education in the third kick of a mule.” A Trump veto threat over a wall-less bipartisan bill might not be enough to prevent it from getting the 67 Senate and 290 House votes to override that veto—and Trump could then pin the blame on congressional Republicans for being “weak.”

Lastly, Trump could declare a national emergency and use it to build the wall, and on the surface that seems like a simple solution.

But as I have explained before, the Democrats would immediately take Trump to court and the construction of the wall would be tied up in the court system for years.  For much more on this, please see my previous article entitled “If President Trump Tries To Declare A National Emergency To Build The Wall, The Democrats Plan To Use Lawsuits To Keep It From Ever Being Built”.

Unfortunately, it does not appear that Trump’s wall is going to move forward any time soon, and that is just one of the reasons why the 2020 election is going to be so critical.  We have got to get Trump some reinforcements in Washington, because otherwise his full agenda will never be implemented.

And the hatred on the left for Trump and his supporters just continues to grow.  For example, one restaurant in California has announced that it will refuse to serve anyone wearing a MAGA hat

An award-winning cookbook author and California restaurant owner says anyone wearing a red “Make America Great Again” baseball cap will be refused service at his restaurant.

J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is a chef-partner of the Wursthall restaurant in San Mateo and says in a tweet Sunday that he views the hats as symbols of intolerance and hate.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday that Lopez-Alt’s decision was met with mixed reaction by restaurant clients.

When I read something like that, it makes me want to drive down to San Francisco and walk in there proudly wearing my MAGA hat.

For the next two years, there will be gridlock in Washington, and we will just have to deal with that.  But the battle is not over, and many believe that the Trump revolution is just beginning.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

This Is The Reason Why The Left Hates Mike And Karen Pence With A Passion…

Mike Pence is the most hated vice-president in modern American history, and mountains of abuse have been heaped upon his wife Karen Pence.  The left hates them with a passion, and the reason they are hated so much is actually very simple.  It is because they are Bible-believing Christians.  In America today, there is so much fuss about the political rancor between “the right” and “the left”, but what we are facing in this country is so much deeper than that.  In reality, we are in the midst of a culture war that has been raging for decades, and the anti-Christian worldview that the left espouses has been winning that war.  But now Donald Trump and Mike Pence are attempting to reverse the tide of the battle, and this is driving the left nuts.  And even though Mike Pence is a very mild-mannered individual, celebrities such as Lady Gaga and Joy Behar have made national headlines by viciously attacking his Christian faith.

But many of us were shocked by how vicious this most recent attack on Karen Pence has been.  The fact that she is returning to teach art at a Christian school that requires teachers to live according to Biblical standards of morality has created a tremendous uproar

According to a job application for the Immanuel Christian School, a private school, applicants must initial a passage promising to “live a personal life of moral purity”.

It lists homosexuality along with premarital sex, polygamy, sexual harassment and sex abuse, among other factors, as examples of moral misconduct.

“I understand that the term ‘marriage’ has only one meaning; the uniting of one man and one woman,” the document states.

For most of American history, basic moral values such as those united the nation, but in 2019 everything has been turned upside down and suddenly those views are considered to be “scandalous”.

In fact, one school has already announced that it will no longer send their sports teams to Immanuel Christian School because of these values…

In a letter to parents, the headmaster of Sheridan School, located in the nation’s capital, announced her students will no longer be participating in sports games with Immanuel Christian School, the private school where second lady Karen Pence is serving as an art instructor, unless they are home games.

Jessica Donovan explained to parents that, even though the self-described “progressive” institution has played games against Immanuel for years, they will no longer be doing so because of the recently revealed doctrinal beliefs espoused by the Springfield, Virginia, school.

For Mike and Karen Pence, this is nothing new.

They have been immersed in the culture war for a very long time, and when he served in Congress even members of his own party would speak derisively about him

To his colleagues on Capitol Hill—an overwhelmingly secular place where even many Republicans privately sneer at people of faith—everything about the Indiana congressman screamed “Bible thumper.” He was known to pray with his staffers, and often cited scripture to explain his votes. In a 2002 interview with Congressional Quarterly, for example, he explained, “My support for Israel stems largely from my personal faith. In the Bible, God promises Abraham, ‘Those who bless you I will bless, and those who curse you I will curse.’ ” He became a champion of the fight to restrict abortion and defund Planned Parenthood.

But through it all, Mike and Karen have never let the pressure change who they are, and this is especially true when it comes to defending the unborn.  Of course you probably already heard about the horrible abortion law that was proposed in Virginia this week, and the following comes from a wonderful editorial that Mike Pence wrote about that proposed law that was published by the National Review

This week, a delegate to the Virginia state legislature introduced a bill affirming abortion up to the moment of birth. In shocking testimony, the delegate admitted that even when it was obvious that a child was about to be born — in the 40th week of a pregnancy, even in the midst of active labor — this proposed law would allow for the child to be aborted, so long as a single doctor approves.

Governor Ralph Northam, a supporter of the bill, went even further in a radio interview the next day. He tried to reassure its opponents that if a child survived an abortion, “the infant would be kept comfortable. [And] the infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue.”

There’s another word for this: infanticide. And it is morally reprehensible and evil.

Mike’s political views are deeply grounded in Scripture, and for the left that makes him a very “dangerous” enemy.  In one recent book that received a tremendous amount of publicity, the leftist authors referred to him as a “Christian supremacist”

In “The Shadow President: The Truth About Mike Pence,” on sale Tuesday, authors Michael D’Antonio and Peter Eisner cast Pence’s background – congressman, Indiana governor, Trump VP – in a harsh light, arguing that “the most successful Christian supremacist in American history” is already functioning as a “kind of replacement president” and is preparing to “fashion a nation more pleasing to his god and corporate sponsors.”

There is an almost tangible feeling of hatred in those words, and one can only imagine the abuse that will be heaped upon the Pences if Mike eventually decides to run for president after Trump’s two terms are over.

In fact, many on the left already consider Mike Pence to be more dangerous than Donald Trump.  Just consider the words of the founder of the Satanic Temple

In a Wednesday interview, Satanic Temple founder Lucien Greaves said that Pence’s Christianity poses a threat to the United States.

“Trump is too stupid to predict; the guy has no concept of his own limitations,” Greaves told the Daily Beast.

“The thing that makes me most comfortable with Trump is the fact that he has no vision. Mike Pence really scares me: Pence has a clear, theocratic vision for the United States.”

Yes, the United States definitely needs to return to the Christian values that this nation was founded upon.  Mike Pence is working very hard to try to do this, and he should be greatly applauded for doing so.

And he definitely needs reinforcements, and so we should do our best to send as many like-minded men and women to Washington as we possibly can.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

The One Thing That Could Almost Guarantee A Trump Victory In 2020 Is On The Verge Of Happening

The left has been salivating over the prospect of voting Donald Trump out of office in 2020, but now something has happened that could change everything.  On Sunday, former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz announced that he is “seriously considering running for president as a centrist independent”.  If Schultz officially decides to run, and it looks like that is almost certainly going to happen, then a Trump victory in 2020 will become almost inevitable.  Unless something dramatic takes place, Trump is going to have the support of at least 40 to 45 percent of American voters in 2020.  But the key was going to be finding that last 5 to 10 percent that he needed to push him over the top.  Unfortunately for Trump, he does not do well with moderate independent voters, and Democratic strategists were counting on those voters to help them beat Trump.  But if a “centrist independent” like Schultz enters the race, he will inevitably steal a lot of those voters from the Democrats, and that is why the left is freaking out so much right now.

There is certainly room in the race for someone like Schultz.  If faced with a choice between Donald Trump and a radical leftist such as Kamala Harris, many Americans would be open to a third option.  And since Schultz is a billionaire, he could certainly provide the resources necessary to mount a serious independent bid.

But he would not have a prayer of actually winning.  40 percent of the country is going to vote Republican no matter what, and 40 percent of the country is going to vote Democrat no matter what.  If things go well for Schultz he could end up with 10 percent of the vote, and if things go perfectly for Schultz he could end up with 20 percent of the vote.

And he is likely to take far more votes from the Democrats than from the Republicans because everyone knows that he was a lifelong Democrat.  He was a big donor to top Democrats, and he voted Democrat his entire life.

So a three way race would be a dream come true for Trump.  In such a scenario Trump may only receive 45 percent of the national vote, but Schultz could pull enough support away from the Democratic candidate to push Trump over the top.

If you are a Trump supporter, send Schultz a message on Twitter encouraging him to run, because it looks like it isn’t going to take too much encouragement to push him over the edge.  In fact, it is being reported that he has already spent many months preparing an independent presidential campaign…

Before announcing his presidential ambitions this week, former Starbucks chief executive Howard Schultz secretly undertook a months-long effort to prepare an independent presidential campaign against the nation’s two-party political system, deploying more than six national polls and laying the groundwork for paid advertising that could debut in the next two months.

All of that effort tells me that Howard Schultz is not just “thinking about it”.  He really wants to do this, and that is extremely good news for Trump.

On Monday, Schultz released his brand new book entitled “From the Ground Up: A Journey to Reimagine the Promise of America”, which is essentially his way of introducing himself as a presidential candidate to the American people.  If you will remember, Barack Obama did the same thing when he first ran for president.  Now Schultz is going on a book tour, and on this tour he will “test the appeal of his ideas”

An early advertising effort, made possible by Schultz’s net worth of about $3.4 billion, would be designed to help Schultz show early promise in national polls during his book tour, which he has described as a time to test the appeal of his ideas.

But if he is a lifelong Democrat, then why didn’t he just run as a Democrat?

Well, these days the Democratic Party has taken a radical turn to the left, and Schultz simply doesn’t agree with many of the socialist policy positions that they are currently espousing

But in 2019, he says he cannot in good conscience run as a Democrat. He is considering an independent run. “What the Democrats are proposing is something that is as false as the wall,” he says, indicating “free” health care, “free” college, and the entire litany of “free” things “which the country cannot afford.” He worries — oh, bless his pointy little head! — about the national debt, unfunded liabilities, and other examples of fiscal recklessness. He thinks that the Democrats’ current “liquidate the kulaks as a class” approach to taxes may prove counterproductive to the long-term interests of the United States as a whole. He worries that “extremists” have taken over both parties.

And in this political environment, a moderate white billionaire would simply not have a prayer of winning the Democratic nomination.

So if he wants to run for president, his only option is to do it as an independent, and the fact that he might actually do this is really stressing out those on the left.  The New York Times just published an editorial entitled “Howard Schultz, Please Don’t Run for President”, and Henry Blodget is urging Schultz “to go home”

Unfortunately, right now, our political system is built around only two major parties.

The best way to defeat a candidate from one party is to vote for the candidate from the other.

So if you want to see President Trump fired in 2020, you should probably urge Howard Schultz to go home.

And the media attacks on Schultz have already begun.  For example, a Slate articleis painting him as someone that was horrible to his employees…

For one, during Schultz’s long tenure as CEO, Starbucks repeatedly fought against workers’ attempts to organize a union. In 2008, for example, a National Labor Relations Board judge found that the company had illegally fired three workers for their union activities, as well as violated other aspects of the law. Starbucks workers in our country still don’t have a union. Although the right wing has tried for years to paint unions as extreme, a recent Gallup pollshowed that 62 percent of Americans approve of labor unions; similarly, an MIT survey found that most workers wanted a greater voice on the job, and that almost half would join a union if given the opportunity. Squelching union organizing efforts may be routine for companies, but it’s not where our country’s political center lies.

Starbucks also pays its workers poverty wages. According to PayScale, an online salary information company, the average hourly rate for Starbucks employees is around $11 per hour. Baristas average $9.77 per hour, and wages don’t reach $15 per hour until a worker becomes a retail store manager ($17.44) or assistant manager ($15.17).

If there is enough abuse from the left, it is still possible that Schultz could pull the plug on his campaign before it has even begun.

But if you are a Trump supporter, you definitely do not want that to happen, because having at least one viable third party candidate is probably the key to Trump winning in 2020.  So everyone needs to encourage Schultz to run, because we absolutely do not want a radical socialist like Kamala Harris in the White House.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

“The Next Obama”? Why Is The Mainstream Media Working So Hard To Promote Kamala Harris?

It seems like virtually every major Democratic politician in the entire country is at least considering running for president, and a bunch of them have already officially entered the race, so why is the mainstream media pushing Kamala Harris so hard?  According to Real Clear Politics, Kamala Harris has not gotten more than single-digit support in any of the 11 major polls for the Democratic nomination that have been conducted so far.  And at this point, her average of just 5.0 percent support in those polls puts her in fourth place in this race.  But if you listen to the mainstream media, they are constantly using terms such as “leading contender” and “frontrunner” to describe her.  In recent days she has been getting more media attention than all of the other declared Democratic candidates combined, and that makes one wonder what is really going on behind the scenes.

On Monday, I was doing some research on the Internet when I noticed an ad for a CNN town hall featuring Kamala Harris.

I thought that it was very early in the process to be doing a town hall, and I thought that it was quite odd that only one of the candidates was being featured.  So curiosity got the best of me and I clicked on the ad.

And sure enough, CNN had given Kamala Harris her very own town hall in a prime time slot, and they had left all of the other candidates out.

Then after the town hall was over, CNN published a glowing editorial about the town hall entitled “It’s Kamala Harris’ race right now”

There’s a long way to go before the Democratic Party picks its nominee for the presidency. But this week, it’s Kamala Harris’ race.

The senator from California’s performance at a CNN town hall Monday night solidified her standing as a leading contender. She was fluid and engaging, striking that always-tough balance (for women, at least) of being both authoritative and warm. She also took solidly left positions on a slew of important topics.

Ladies and gentlemen, that is what you call a propaganda piece.

There are seven other Democrats that have already officially announced that they are running.  So where were they, and why is Kamala Harris being singled out for such favorable treatment?

She has been dubbed “the next Obama” or the “female Obama” by many on the left, and just like we witnessed in 2008, the mainstream media can’t help but gush about how wonderful she is.

Following her town hall performance on Monday night, CNN boldly declared that “Harris pushed to the front of the pack”

The Democratic bench is deep, and this primary will be a contentious one for the best reason: because there are so many excellent, qualified candidates. The primary is a long way away, and there will no doubt be significant ebbs and flows as some candidates surge and others retreat. But on Monday night, Harris pushed to the front of the pack.

Of course that is a lot easier to do when none of the other candidates are on the stage.

So exactly what does Kamala Harris stand for?

Well, during the town hall on Monday night she expressed her support for a government-run “Medicare for all” system…

‘We need to have Medicare for all. That’s just the bottom line,’ Harris said during a CNN town hall event, declaring that she feels ‘very strongly’ about it.

‘The idea is that everyone gets access to medical care, and you don’t have to go through the process of going through an insurance company, having them give you approval, going through the paperwork, all of the delay that may require,’ she explained, concluding that private insurers should not be part of the system.

‘Let’s eliminate all of that. Let’s move on,’ said Harris.

But she didn’t stop there.  In addition to getting rid of health insurance companies, she is also in favor of banning a whole bunch of other things

But the queen of the ban was just getting starting. Along with banning private health insurance, Harris also wants to ban for-profit colleges, assault weapons, fossil fuels, personal cars, and presumably members of the Knights of Columbus serving as federal judges.

She also voiced her support for AOC’s “Green New Deal”, and if that is ever implemented it will completely turn our society upside down (and not in a good way) in just 10 years

“I support a Green New Deal, and I will tell you why: Climate change is an existential threat to us, and we have got to deal with the reality of it,” she said when asked by an audience member about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s radical “Green New Deal.”

The plan by the freshman congresswoman calls for wiping the fossil fuel industry out of existence and replacing all ofAmerica’s energy production with renewables within 10 years.

On top of everything else, she also wants to grab your guns

“You can be in favor of the Second Amendment and also understand that there is no reason in a civil society that we have assault weapons around communities that can kill babies and police officers,” Kamala Harris says of guns in America.

In essence, Harris has attempted to stake her claim as the most progressive candidate in a Democratic field that will be absolutely teeming with them.

I think that Liz Wheeler summarized what Harris had to say at the town hall very well…

So Kamala Harris tonight:

Will take your guns away.
Will take your doctor away.
Will take your free market away.
Will take your car away.
Will take your wealth away.
Will take your wall away.

Cool, let’s vote for her! Said nobody with a brain.

And if the mainstream media continues to stay solidly behind her, there is a very good chance that she could be Donald Trump’s opponent in 2020, because right now most Democrats have no idea who they want

Most Democratic voters can’t name the candidate they want to replace President Donald Trump, a new poll revealed on Tuesday and it also showed the president is vulnerable in his reelection efforts.

When asked whom they would support for the Democratic presidential nomination, 56 percent of self-identified Democrats did not offer a name, a Washington Post-ABC News poll found.

It is being projected that up to 30 Democrats could ultimately enter the race, but most of them don’t have a prayer.

In the end, the candidate that receives the most attention from the mainstream media will probably be the nominee, and right now that candidate is Kamala Harris.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

So Much For Global Warming: Wind Chill Temps To Hit -60 In Midwest As Global Weather Patterns Shift

The experts are telling us that the Midwest could experience the coldest weather that it has ever seen this week.  Wind chill temperatures of -40 and -50 degrees will be common throughout the region, and it is being projected that some spots will actually get hit by wind chill temperatures of up to -60 degrees.  A shift in the polar vortex is being blamed for this life-threatening weather, and we are being told to expect the coldest temperatures to arrive on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.  But all-time records are already being set.  For example, according to Accuweather the temperature in the city of International Falls, Minnesota hit 45 below zero on Monday morning…

The coldest weather in years will put millions of people and animals throughout the midwestern United States at risk for hypothermia and frostbite to occur in minutes during the final days of January.

The deep freeze continued across the Upper Midwest on Sunday with temperatures plummeting well below zero in the morning. The low of 45 below zero F in International Falls, Minnesota, shattered the day’s record of 36 below zero F from 1966.

Please keep in mind that was not a wind chill temperature.

That was the actual temperature outside.

As the week progresses, bitterly cold temperatures will be accompanied by heavy snow and strong winds across the Midwest.  The polar jet stream has weakened, and as a result the polar vortex will “dip into parts of North America”

The wintry onslaught will be driven by the Northern Hemisphere’s polar vortex, the pocket of cold air sitting atop the North Pole. When temperatures rise in the Arctic, the polar jet stream — the torrent of westerly winds that hold the polar vortex in place — can weaken and dip into parts of North America.

“Occasionally this ring of winds deforms or even splits, which allows the cold air to spill southward over mid latitudes — this is exactly what’s happening now,” said Jennifer Francis, a senior research scientist with Woods Hole Research Center in Massachusetts, in an email. “It just so happens that the lobe of cold air is located over central North America, with Chicago in the crosshairs.”

This is an extremely dangerous situation, and we will probably read about some people that underestimate the danger and end up dead.

According to weather.com, the air will be so cold that it “could lead to frostbite on exposed skin in a matter of minutes”…

This bitter cold will be accompanied by strong winds at times Tuesday through Thursday, leading to life-threatening wind chills in the Midwest that could lead to frostbite on exposed skin in a matter of minutes. A large swath of the Midwest will have wind chills in the 30s, 40s and 50s below zero by Wednesday. A few spots in Minnesota and eastern North Dakota may see wind chills in the 60s below zero.

Unless you absolutely must go out for some reason, if you live in the Midwest you should stay inside until temperatures begin to warm up again.

This weather is so unusual that even President Trump is tweeting about it

In the beautiful Midwest, windchill temperatures are reaching minus 60 degrees, the coldest ever recorded. In coming days, expected to get even colder. People can’t last outside even for minutes. What the hell is going on with Global Waming? Please come back fast, we need you!

Now that even the president of the United States is acknowledging that this winter could be “the coldest ever recorded”, I want to remind everyone that we were warned about this months in advance…

“Climate Chaos: Following Record Heat This Summer, Experts Are Predicting There Will Be A Nightmarishly Cold Winter”

“November Snow In Texas? Experts Warn Decreased Solar Activity Will Shatter All Global Climate Models”

“The Coldest And Snowiest November Ever? Here Is Why America’s Freakish Weather Is Only Going To Get Worse…”

“A Mini Ice Age? NASA Scientist Warns That Diminished Solar Activity Could Mean The Coldest Winter In Modern Times”

“-75 Wind Chill On Thanksgiving??? Why This Could Be The Coldest Winter In America EVER…”

I wrote article after article warning that this would happen, and now it is happening.

At this hour, schools and businesses are closed throughout North Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin as blizzard-like conditions sweep through both states.  And Chicago is bracing for what will likely be the coldest day ever in the history of the city

After seeing a high around 34 on Monday at O’Hare International Airport, temperatures will drop to near zero before the end of the day, according to the National Weather Service. By Tuesday night, temperatures are expected to take another plunge, to 23 below zero, flirting with Chicago’s coldest temperature ever: minus 27 on Jan. 20, 1985.

Temperatures are forecast to inch up to a daytime high of about minus 14 on Wednesday — the first subzero high temperature in five years and the coldest winter high ever recorded in Chicago — before dipping, again, to about minus 21 overnight. The coldest daytime high in Chicago was minus 11 on Christmas Eve 1983.

Our planet is changing, our climate is collapsing, and this is going to put an increasing amount of strain on social order.

And we are already starting to see evidence of this.  In fact, Chicago police are telling us that in recent days people have been getting robbed of their expensive winter coats at gunpoint

Chicago police are reporting gunpoint robberies targeting people wearing pricey Canada Goose jackets as temperatures plunge in the city.

Over the past two weeks, police say there’s been a spate of the thefts in which people wearing the luxury coats have been targeted and forced to give up the jackets. The coats can cost upward of $1,000 and are often seen on celebrities.

Six people had their Canada Goose coats stolen last week and two more were targeted Wednesday.

Unfortunately, this is only just the beginning.

Global seismic activity is rising, weather patterns are becoming more extreme, and a worldwide environmental collapse is already well underway.  If you have any doubts that this worldwide environmental collapse is happening, just read this excellent article by Chris Martenson.

We have been making the wrong decisions for decades, and now the consequences of those decisions are starting to catch up with us.  The clock is ticking, but most Americans are still completely and utterly clueless about what is coming.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

A Company That Will “Fill Your Veins With The Blood Of Young People” Has Opened 5 Clinics In US

If it would add a decade to your life, would you allow the blood of young people to be injected into your veins?  I understand that this may sound very strange to you, but the truth is that interest in this sort of “anti-aging therapy” has surged among the elite in recent years.  And now a company called Ambrosia has opened clinics in five major U.S. cities where you can actually have “youthful blood” injected directly into your veins.  But it isn’t cheap.  According to Jesse Karmazin, the founder of Ambrosia, having one liter of young blood injected into you will cost $8,000 and getting two liters of young blood will set you back $12,000

The company is now up and running, Karmazin told Business Insider on Wednesday. Ambrosia recently revamped its website with a list of clinic locations and is now accepting payments for the procedure via PayPal. Two options are listed: 1 liter of young blood for $8,000, or 2 liters for $12,000.

In the fall, Karmazin — who is not a licensed medical practitioner — told Business Insider he planned to open the first Ambrosia clinic in New York City by the end of the year. That didn’t happen. Instead, he said, the sites where customers can get the procedure include Los Angeles; San Francisco; Tampa, Florida; Omaha, Nebraska; and Houston, Texas.

Since these “treatments” are so expensive, for now, it will only be the wealthy that will be able to afford them.

But apparently, there is a lot of interest because the company actually had to create a waiting list because there was so much demand.

You might be tempted to think that something like this must be illegal, but it isn’t.  In essence, these “treatments” are basically just blood transfusions, and therefore no special permission from the FDA is required.

The potential health benefits of young blood is something that has fascinated researchers for centuries, but it was a field of study that was relatively dormant until “around the turn of the millennium”

Then around the turn of the millennium, a professor who’d learned about parabiosis in Montana in the 1950s passed on his knowledge of the procedure to a grad student, whose work created a new academic lineage probing young blood. (Some researchers hope it could help to turn back the effects of aging, others just hope it could help the elderly recover from injuries or people of all ages undergo treatments like chemotherapy.) These new researchers established that its potential benefits lie in the fact that as we age, the levels of some of the 700 or so proteins in our blood plasma shift, causing rippling changes in all of our tissues and bodily functions. (Hence old blood can theoretically cause aging effects in a younger body, just as young blood’s proteins can rejuvenate, although not reverse aging, in older folks.)

And over the past several years the backing of prominent elitists such as billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel has pushed this “technology” to the forefront

Over the summer it became apparent that Silicon Valley wingnut Peter Thiel was fascinated with the prospect of extending his life by transfusing the blood of younger humans into his veins. This revelation (although not shocking given Thiel’s notorious oddities and obsession with fringe elixirs) touched off a storm of cheap vampire-joke headlines. But it also put a spotlight on the trove of research that sparked Thiel’s literal bloodlust—studies showing that mice infused with the blood of their youngers experienced signs of rejuvenation and statistically longer lives.

But does it actually work?

Ambrosia conducted a “clinical trial” in 2017, but they have not released the results yet.

Earlier studies on mice, however, seem to have had some interesting results

In early experiments in mice, Tony Wyss-Coray, a director of the Alzheimer’s research center at Stanford University Medical School who founded a longevity startup focused on blood plasma called Alkahest, found that swapping old blood plasma for young blood plasma appeared to provide somelimited cognitive benefits. The 150-year-old surgical techniquehe used, parabiosis — whose name comes from the Greek words “para,” or “beside,” and “bio,” or “life” — involves exchanging the blood of two living organisms.

Of course many are objecting to these sorts of “treatments” on moral grounds.  While these treatments may seem a lot more “clinical” than actually drinking the blood of young people, many see very little moral difference.

Meanwhile, for those that wish to cheat death there is some wonderful news coming out of the Middle East.  A team of Israeli scientists has just announced that they are on the verge of developing “a complete cure for cancer”

“We believe we will offer in a year’s time a complete cure for cancer,” said Dan Aridor, of a new treatment being developed by his company, Accelerated Evolution Biotechnologies Ltd. (AEBi), which was founded in 2000 in the ITEK incubator in the Weizmann Science Park. AEBi developed the SoAP platform, which provides functional leads to very difficult targets.

“Our cancer cure will be effective from day one, will last a duration of a few weeks and will have no or minimal side-effects at a much lower cost than most other treatments on the market,” Aridor said. “Our solution will be both generic and personal.”

Hopefully, this cure will turn out to be the real thing.  I am no scientist, but what they are saying about their research certainly sounds promising

In contrast, MuTaTo is using a combination of several cancer-targeting peptides for each cancer cell at the same time, combined with a strong peptide toxin that would kill cancer cells specifically. By using at least three targeting peptides on the same structure with a strong toxin, Morad said, “we made sure that the treatment will not be affected by mutations; cancer cells can mutate in such a way that targeted receptors are dropped by the cancer.”

“The probability of having multiple mutations that would modify all targeted receptors simultaneously decreases dramatically with the number of targets used,” Morad continued. “Instead of attacking receptors one at a time, we attack receptors three at a time – not even cancer can mutate three receptors at the same time.”

We truly live during one of the most remarkable times in all of human history, and the advance of technology is changing all of our lives at a pace that is absolutely dizzying.

But there is a dark side to all of this technology as well, and those that want to inject the blood of young people into their veins are a reminder of the importance of staying grounded in the values of the past as we reach into the future.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

What Has Been Going On Behind Closed Doors In America Is Evidence Of Social Decay & Will Make You Cringe

It is difficult for me to write this article, and I will warn you in advance that some of the things in this piece are going to make you cringe.  Today, there are an increasing number of signs that the very fabric of our society is rotting away all around us.  We witnessed a very clear example of this last week when Kyrsten Sinema paraded around on the floor of the U.S. Senate looking like a hooker, but far more telling is what is going on behind closed doors all across America.  The stories that I am about to share with you barely made a blip on the news, but they should have, because they are all indications of how far our nation has fallen.

Let’s start in Colorado.  A 27-year-old man named Christopher Wayne Cleary was just arrested on terrorism charges after he threatened to shoot “as many girls as I see”

Authorities said Christopher Wayne Cleary, of Denver, posted on his Facebook page that “Theres nothing more dangerous than man ready to die.”

“All I wanted was a girlfriend, not 1000 not a bunch of hoes not money none of that,” he wrote, according to a probable-cause statement cited by authorities. “All I wanted was to be loved, yet no one cares about me I’m 27 years old and I’ve never had a girlfriend before and I’m still a virgin, this is why I’m planning on shooting up a public place soon and being the next mass shooter cause I’m ready to die and all the girls the turned me down is going to make it right by killing as many girls as I see.”

Thankfully authorities were able to arrest him before he was able to carry out his threats, but the sad truth is that there are thousands upon thousands more young men out there just like him.

These young men feel like failures if they can’t get young women to sleep with them, and this message is reinforced by popular culture over and over again.

But that isn’t what “being a man” is all about.

Unfortunately, the only values that many of our young men have are the values that they have been fed by Hollywood, and Christopher Wayne Cleary was so frustrated with his inability to live up to the Hollywood ideal that he was ready to go on a mass shooting spree.

Next, let me share a story with you about a young mother in Florida.  When police recently arrived at the home of Angelica Crites, she didn’t respond.  So they entered the home and when she still didn’t respond they had to pry her bedroom door open.

But she still didn’t wake up when they did that.  In fact, it took authorities several minutes to finally wake her up.

And when they looked around the house, what they discovered was like something out of a horror movie

There was an “overwhelming odor of ammonia and feces,” and large spider webs were along the ceilings and door frames. Food and dirt was all over the floor in the living room and dining room. A mop bucket filled with dirty water and food pieces was in the dining room, the report said.

The dining room had a large amount of trash in the corner and underneath a table to make food. The refrigerator was unsanitary with food, dirt and stains all over the inside and outside. Numerous insects were flying around the house.

The condition of her children was even worse.  They were filthy dirty and their teeth “were black and gray” from a lack of care.

On top of everything else, animal feces had literally been smeared throughout the house

The floor leading to the bathroom had animal feces smeared on it. Mold and animal feces was in the corner of the hall by the bathroom door.

Crites and her children shared a bedroom, where there was a large pile of clothes in the corner, dirt on the floor and several red cups on a shelf containing an unknown black liquid and cigarette butts, the report said.

In her bathroom, there were several piles of animal feces on the floor and in the bathtub, and some smeared on the floor, the report said.

It is easy to criticize anyone that lives like that, but the truth is that what we are doing to ourselves as a nation is even worse.

We need to be praying for children all across America, because so many of them are living in absolutely horrific situations and they have no way to escape.

For example, consider what recently happened to one precious child in Indiana

Back on January 14th, a young child was taken to Union Hospital.

That’s according to court documents.

Police, DCS, and emergency room staff say the child had a split tongue, several bruises, and other injuries.

That child was later transported to Riley Hospital in Indianapolis.

While there, hospital staff determined an object, most likely scissors, were used to split the child’s tongue.

How evil do you have to be to do something like that?

But this is who we have become as a nation.  And things like this happen so frequently that this story barely made a blip on the national news.

Almost everyone can put up a pretty decent facade in public, but it is the things that happen behind closed doors that define who we truly are.  And what one man in Arizona recently did is almost too sickening for words

A nurse has been arrested in the sexual assault of an incapacitated woman who gave birth at a Phoenix nursing facility, Arizona police said Wednesday.

Nathan Sutherland, 36, was a licensed practical nurse at Hacienda Skilled Nursing Facility, where the woman gave birth.

The female patient had been in a vegetative state facility for at least 14 years after a near-drowning incident.

Some of you may be thinking that “this is just one guy”, but the truth is that there are more than 850,000 registered sex offenders in the United States today.

And that is just the people that have been caught.  Imagine how many more there are that have not been caught.

So no, this is not just “an isolated incident”.  We are a nation that is literally teeming with sexual predators.

Lastly, I want to share with you the story of Logan and Daley South.  They both wear fangs and they both drink blood, and they opened up about their relationship with their “girlfriend” Ilona on a recent episode of Extreme Love

‘I don’t like the way blood tastes. I find it inconvenient to have to do regularly,’ Daley admits. ‘I’m someone that needs it, but I’m not a big fan of it. For Logan, it can be very sexual for him.’

Although Logan and Daley both wear fangs, they don’t need to bite into Ilona’s neck and gorge on her blood like a scene in a horror movie to feel satisfied.

In the clip, Daley uses the same tool that diabetics use to prick their fingers to draw Ilona’s blood before she and Logan begin hungrily sucking on her fingers.

If you took Americans from 200 years ago and showed them this, how do you think that they would react?

Needless to say, they would think that we have completely lost our minds.

And the sad truth is that we have definitely lost our way as a nation.  Our lack of values is producing absolutely horrific results, and it is getting worse with each passing day.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

3 Pictures That Show How Much America Has Changed Since The Old Days

What would our founders think if they could see us today?  Every great civilization throughout human history eventually entered a period of decline, and we continue to get more evidence every single day that America’s decline is accelerating.  But even though I am constantly writing about this stuff, I was absolutely stunned when I first saw the photo above.  If Kyrsten Sinema had shown up on the floor of the U.S. Senate looking like that in the old days, she would have been immediately hauled away.  But today, apparently it is perfectly acceptable for America’s first bisexual senator to parade around the Senate floor looking like a prostitute.  Quite a few conservatives have remarked that she looked like the character that Julia Roberts played in Pretty Woman, but in my opinion, that is being way too kind.

Look, I have never been in favor of extremely strict dress codes either, but if you are going to represent an entire state in the U.S. Senate you should at least try to show a little bit of class.

Of course, the truth is that Sinema is simply the product of a culture that is becoming less classy with each passing year.

For example, just consider what is happening in Tennessee.  State Representative Antonio Parkinson has proposed implementing a dress code for parents when they visit public schools in the state.  He did this because of all the horror stories that he has been hearing

“People wearing next to nothing. People wearing shirts or tattoos with expletives. People coming onto a school campus and cursing the principal or the teacher out. These things happen regularly,” Parkinson said.

“A principal I talked to told me a lady came into the office with her sleepwear on with some of her body parts hanging out. You got children coming down the hall in a line and they can possibly see this,” he added.

Another indication of how much America has changed since the old days comes to us from New York state.

They just passed a law that will ensure that abortion stays legal in the state even if Roe v. Wade is overturned, and it makes abortions “legal all the way up to birth”

To the sound of supporters chanting “free abortion on demand, we can do it, yes we can,” the New York legislature just passed the terribly named “Reproductive Health Act.” It’s the most radically pro-abortion state-level initiative in recent memory.

The new law has nothing to do with health, and everything to do with death. It removes abortion from the criminal code and makes it legal all the way up to birth, allowing all doctors and midwives to kill unborn babies, no questions asked.

To celebrate passage of this new law, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered One World Trade Center to be lit up pink that night

One World Trade Center in New York City, NY — the centerpiece of the World Trade Center complex — was illuminated with pink lighting to celebrate the Empire State’s passage of legislation designating abortion a “fundamental right.”

In response, this is what country music legend Charlie Daniels had to say about this new law on Twitter

Watch the wrinkles on Cuomo’s face lengthen as the ramifications of the thousands of murders he has sanctioned come to bear on him. The NY legislature has created a new Auschiwitz dedicated to the execution of a whole segment of defenseless citizens. Satan is smiling

This third photo is one we’ll never forget.  Nick Sandmann has been through hell and back because of this image, but he never deserved any of the abuse that he has received.

As the video evidence has clearly demonstrated, crazed leftist Nathan Phillips boldly approached Nick Sandmann and started beating a drum just inches from his face in an attempt to intimidate him.

But Sandmann refused to be intimidated, and instead, he chose to courageously smile as a grown man wildly pounded a drum directly in front of him.

Nathan Phillips should be the one that the mainstream media is ripping to shreds, but instead, it is Nick Sandmann that is getting all the abuse because he was the one wearing the MAGA hat.

The mobs of crazed leftists in Washington D.C. that I envisioned in “The Beginning Of The End” are beginning to materialize.  There will be a lot more controversial confrontations between liberals and conservatives in cities all over the nation, and things are likely to get a lot uglier as we approach the next presidential election in 2020.

As much as we may wish that it could be true, America is never again going to be the same place that it was 50 or 60 years ago.

All nations change, and our country is currently evolving at a pace that is absolutely breathtaking.  If we stay on the path that we are currently on, we will continue to rapidly decline and our fate will be inevitable.

But as long as there is still time on the clock, there is always an opportunity to turn things around.  My hope is that there will be a great awakening among the American people, because time is quickly running out.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

If President Trump Tries To Declare A National Emergency To Build The Wall, The Democrats Plan To Use Lawsuits To Keep It From Ever Being Built

Editor’s Note:  This is exactly what I was talking about in my piece yesterday on Trump’s cave.  He knows this will happen, will let it happen and run out the clock on the first term hoping his support base will continue to support him thinking he’s trying to do something when it’s nothing more than controlling the opposition and providing cover over the next two years for attacks on our rights.  Watch and see.

President Trump has repeatedly floated the idea of declaring a national emergency in order to pave the way for the wall to be built, and it is now being reported that the White House has actually drawn up a draft proclamation to be used if Trump decides to go in that direction.  But there is a very strong reason why he hasn’t pulled the trigger on such a move yet.  If Trump tries to make an end run around Congress in this manner, the Democrats plan to immediately take him to court.  That would mean construction of the wall would be tied up in the court system for years, and if Trump lost in 2020 it would never happen at all.

So if Trump is really committed to the wall, he needs to keep going with this shutdown until the Democrats finally give in.

Using a national emergency to build the wall sounds like a simple solution to a lot of people, but the truth is that it would be a legal nightmare.

The easy part would be actually declaring the national emergency.  Presidents have made 58 national emergency declarations since 1979, and 31 of them are still in effect right now.

And if a national emergency was declared, the Trump administration has identified 7 billion dollars in federal funds that could potentially be used for wall construction

According to options being considered, the administration could pull: $681 million from Treasury forfeiture funds, $3.6 billion in military construction, $3 billion in Pentagon civil works funds, and $200 million in Department of Homeland Security funds, the official said.

But of course, the Democrats are not just going to stand by and allow President Trump to do that.  As Politifact has noted, it is almost certain that there would be an immediate legal challenge…

If Trump declared a national emergency, expert said he might rely on 10 U.S. Code Section 2808 and 33 U.S. Code Section 2293. In very broad terms, they concern the use of the armed forces to undertake military construction projects, and the termination or deferment of Army civil works project and using those resources to undertake other construction “essential to the national defense.”

Trump would likely face a legal challenge if he invoked either of those two provisions, experts said. Potential arguments that would rise are whether the border wall is necessary to support the armed forces already deployed at the border, whether the construction has the appropriate approval, and whether the reallocation of funds is justified. Also a matter of debate is who would have legal standing to challenge the president’s declaration.

In particular, the Democrats would likely invoke the Antideficiency Act.  It is unclear whether or not they would ultimately be successful, but this portion of federal law is certainly vague enough to keep the two sides tied up in the federal court system for a very long time.  Ryan Alexander, the president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, recently gave us some insight into what the legal strategy for the Democrats could potentially look like

This latest idea of actually paying for wall construction out of the DoD Appropriations bill has a major stumbling block: the Antideficiency Act. Once the domain of only the most serious appropriations law nerds, the Trump era has pushed this statute out of the shadows of “Principles of Federal Appropriations Law” and made it an issue that must be discussed.

Simply stated, this is the law that says money appropriated by Congress cannot be spent in advance or in excess of a congressional appropriation. Also, the act prohibits “…involving the government in any obligation to pay money before funds have been appropriated for that purpose…” (emphasis added.) In effect this means funds may only be used to pay for the item or action for which the money was specifically appropriated.

If President Trump does not want the construction of the wall to be tied up in court indefinitely, then he needs congressional approval, and that won’t be easy.

Both sides have dug their heels in, and there does not appear to be any room for a compromise.  The Democrats are pledging that they will never give Trump a single penny for a border wall, and if they break that promise they will have to deal with an overwhelming political backlash.

Meanwhile, the crisis on the border continues to escalate.  For example, one rancher that lives on the border recently caught a smuggler in the act of trying to steal his truck

Grossman lives in the same area, and illegal crossers have entered his home a number of times. He recently caught a smuggler trying to steal his truck.

“I brought him back to the house,” Grossman recounted. “And then my wife called the sheriff, and the sheriff and border patrol come up and got him and then we went back to my pickup and there was a bale of marijuana in the back of my pickup and he had stolen a lot of stuff from the house.”

And the sheriff of Cochise County is desperate for the federal government to “fix this problem” that he has to deal with on a daily basis…

Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels oversees a border county covering more land than Connecticut. He says when the government fails to take a strong stand on immigration, it only makes things worse. “Those that want to come into this country and harm us – terrorists – have the infrastructure to get through here in Cochise County,” he explains. “Anytime this administration talks about amnesty or anything that has to do with the border we have an influx of people coming across. We sit back all the time and just wonder, why they won’t do something to fix this problem.’”

We desperately need some common sense solutions in Washington, but unfortunately, most members of Congress seem to be greatly lacking in common sense these days.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Elizabeth Warren’s Annual Wealth Confiscation Tax Would “Redistribute” $2.75 Trillion Over 10 Years

Elizabeth Warren is making it exceedingly clear that she is a socialist, and that is quite frightening considering the fact that she could potentially become our next president.  Unless some really big name unexpectedly enters the race, there is a decent chance that Elizabeth Warren could win the Democratic nomination in 2020.  And if she ultimately won the general election, the Democrats would likely have control of both the House and the Senate during her first two years in the White House as well.  So that means that the proposal that you are about to read about could actually become law in the not too distant future.

After AOC’s proposal to raise the top marginal tax rate to 70 percent received so much favorable attention, it was just a matter of time before Democratic presidential candidates started jumping on the “soak the rich” bandwagon, and the first one to strike was Elizabeth Warren.

When she announced her new proposal on Twitter, she dubbed it the “Ultra-Millionaire Tax”

We need structural change. That’s why I’m proposing something brand new – an annual tax on the wealth of the richest Americans. I’m calling it the “Ultra-Millionaire Tax” & it applies to that tippy top 0.1% – those with a net worth of over $50M.

It would be bad enough if this was just a one-time tax on wealth.

But it isn’t.

Please note the use of the word “annual” in Warren’s tweet.  That means that the rich would keep getting hit with this tax year after year after year.

Those with more than 50 million dollars in assets would pay a 2 percent tax each year, and those with more than a billion dollars in assets would pay 3 percent each year

The Post reported that Warren has been advised by Saez and Gabriel Zucman, left-leaning economists affiliated with the University of California, Berkeley, on a deal that would levy a 2 percent wealth tax on Americans with $50 million-plus in assets. For Americans with assets above $1 billion, that tax rate would increase to 3 percent.

The newspaper, citing a person familiar with the plan, reported that Warren’s plan would try to counter tax evasion by boosting funding for the IRS, and by levying a one-time tax penalty on people with more than $50 million who try to renounce their U.S. citizenship. It would also require that a certain number of people who pay the wealth tax be subject to annual audits, the Post reported.

3 percent may not sound like a lot to many of you.  But over the course of a couple of decades, many families could have their fortunes almost completely wiped out by this wealth confiscation tax.

According to economist Emmanuel Saez, this new tax would be imposed upon approximately 75,000 families and would raise 2.75 trillion dollars over 10 years.

Clearly, this is a move by Warren to appeal to the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.  I really like how Zero Hedge made this point…

Elizabeth Warren has never been a friend to the wealthy. But in the age of Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, merely advocating for “holding the rich accountable” simply doesn’t penetrate like it did back in 2008. And that’s because, on the left flank of the Democratic Party, you’re not really a progressive unless you believe that the existence of billionaires is a policy error.

And surprisingly, there is actually a lot of public support for such a proposal.  In fact, a recent Fox News poll found that Americans overwhelmingly support soaking the rich…

Voters support tax increases on families making over $10 million annually by a 46-point margin (70 percent favor-24 percent oppose), and support a hike on those making over $1 million by 36 points (65-29 percent).

There is less support for a broader tax increase: 44 percent favor raising rates on those with income over $250,000, and a small minority, 13 percent, approves of an increase on all Americans.

Of course so much depends on how a survey is worded.  For example, I would be willing to bet that a survey would show that well over 50 percent of all Americans would back my proposal to abolish the income tax completely.

Over the coming months, Democratic presidential contenders are going to be continuously trying to one up each other with their promises to tax the rich and give out free stuff.  By the end, someone out there may even be promising to give free rides to the Moon to everyone.

But if Elizabeth Warren really wants to be considered a serious contender, she needs to eliminate the ridiculous gaffes that have plagued her in the past.  For instance, she recently claimed that we have “two co-equal branches of government”

Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., already has declared that the government has “three chambers of Congress,” the House, the Senate and the presidency.

Now, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has claimed on Twitter that the government has “two co-equal branches of government, the president of the United States and Congress.”

“The Notorious RBG (Supreme Court Justice Ruth Ginsburg) is gonna be ticked off that she’s been forgotten again,” said a post on the Twitter news-aggregating site Twitchy.

And there is certainly no excuse for such a gaffe, because she used to be a law professor.

In the end, it is difficult to understand why so many Americans seem to want to march down the road toward socialism.  Because as President Trump has noted, Venezuela has shown us where that road leads

“We’re looking at Venezuela, it’s a very sad situation,” Trump told reporters. “That was the richest state in all of that area, that’s a big beautiful area, and by far the richest — and now it’s one of the poorest places in the world. That’s what socialism gets you, when they want to raise your taxes to 70 percent.”

He added: “You know, it’s interesting, I’ve been watching our opponents — our future opponents talk about 70 percent. No. 1, they can’t do it for 70 percent, it’s got to be probably twice that number. But, maybe more importantly what happens is you really have to study what’s happened to Venezuela. It’s a very, very sad situation.”

Unfortunately, political proposals don’t have to actually make sense, and right now Elizabeth Warren is doing all that she can to win the progressive vote.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Democrats & Mainstream Media Gloat As If They Had Just Won Super Bowl

The government shutdown is over, Roger Stone has been arrested, and the left is having a field day on social media.  And even though we could have another government shutdown in just 3 weeks, the Democrats and the mainstream media are acting as if they had just won the lottery, the World Series and the Super Bowl all on the same day.  Of course, we would expect those on the left to openly celebrate after the stunning turn of events that we witnessed on Friday, but what has been surprising is how eagerly the mainstream media has joined in on the celebration.  Over and over again, reporters are gleefully using the word “caved” to describe what just happened.  For example, the following comes from a CNN article entitled Donald Trump caved. And now the government is going to re-open.”

President Donald Trump had made one thing very clear on each day of this 35-day government shutdown: He wouldn’t agree to a compromise deal to re-open the government unless it contained money allocated for the construction of his border wall.

And then, on Friday, he did exactly that.

And CNN’s Dana Bash made it exceedingly clear how she feels about what just happened

Friday on CNN’s “Newsroom,” network political correspondent Dana Bash said President Donald Trump’s deal to end the shutdown and reopen the federal government was a “cave.”

Bash said, “There’s a four letter word to describe what we just saw, and that’s ‘cave.’ There’s no other way to describe it. The president caved after, as you said, more than 30 days, after all of the real, real-world ramifications he hasn’t gotten a dime for his wall, but it’s because things have gotten so bad obviously.”

Meanwhile, CNN’s Jim Acosta is calling this “one of the biggest tactical defeats, strategic defeats of his political career”.  At this point, it would be easy to imagine everyone at CNN wearing little party hats and eating cake and ice cream while endlessly laughing after what we witnessed on Friday.

Of course, CNN is far from alone when it comes to gloating over the end of the shutdown.  The following comes from a Washington Post article entitled “Trump lost. Period.”

Things continue until they don’t. The senseless, cruel government shutdown ended on Friday. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) had vowed she would not give anything until the government reopened. President Trump had promised he wouldn’t reopen the government without funding for his border wall. Now, Pelosi is getting what she wants. Trump has lost. The deal would reopen the government for three weeks to allow a conference committee to discuss border security measures — but not a wall.

Trump probably thought that he would be able to deliver the State of the Union address on Tuesday night if he ended the shutdown now, but it looks like that probably is not going to happen.

When asked by reporters about this, Nancy Pelosi coldly responded by saying that the “State of the Union is not planned now”

At a news conference following Trump’s announcement that there was a deal to end the partial government shutdown, Pelosi was asked by a reporter if the State of the Union will go on as originally scheduled for Tuesday night.

“The State of the Union is not planned now,” the California Democrat responded, standing next to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat. “What I said to the President is when the government is open we will discuss a mutually agreeable date, and I’ll look forward to doing that and welcoming the President to the House of Representatives for the State of the Union when we agree on that.”

Of course, the speech will happen at some point, but it will happen exactly whenever Nancy Pelosi decides that it will happen.

Needless to say, many conservatives did not take the news of the deal to end the government shutdown very well.  Here are just a few examples

“Good news for George Herbert Walker Bush: As of today, he is no longer the biggest wimp ever to serve as President of the United States,” tweeted conservative commentator Ann Coulter.

“Nancy Pelosi is alpha,” tweeted conservative film maker Mike Cernovich.

And right wing commentator Michael Malice opined: “Apparently a wall isn’t as good as a cave.”

What made Friday doubly devastating for conservatives was the early morning arrest of Roger Stone.  It was done in a very cold, cruel manner, and it was obviously done this way to make a point.  The following comes from Gateway Pundit

On May 2, 2011, in the early morning hours 25 Navy SEALs stormed Osama Bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The Navy SEALs arrived in two Black Hawk helicopters to storm the compound of the terrorist leader behind the 9-11 attacks.

On January 25, 2019, in the pre-dawn hours, at least six FBI vehicles and at least 12 officers stormed Trump associate Roger Stone’s home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The deep state officers were dressed in tactical vests with large weapons. They were wearing night vision glasses.

Did they really need to conduct a military-style raid in the wee hours of the morning to arrest someone like Stone?

And what made this raid particularly offensive was the fact that CNN cameras were there to film the entire thing.  As Greta Van Susteren aptly noted, it was obvious that CNN was tipped off in advance…

CNN cameras were at the raid of Roger Stone…so FBI obviously tipped off CNN…even if you don’t like Stone, it is curious why Mueller’s office tipped off CNN instead of trying to quietly arrest Stone; quiet arrests are more likely to be safe to the FBI and the person arrested

This is yet another instance that proves that the Deep State and the mainstream media are now coordinating very, very closely with one another.

When he was later released, a press conference featuring Stone outside the courthouse was drowned out by crazed liberals shouting “Lock him up!”  If you have not seen video footage of this yet, you can watch it right here.

And in a very troubling sign, the “Trump campaign” was mentioned a total of 28 times in Stone’s indictment…

However, in what may be a preview of future legal cases, the indictment mentions the “Trump campaign” or “Trump campaign official/officials” 28 times, mostly in connection with Stone’s attempt to get information from Wikileaks that would be damaging to the Clinton campaign.

For a very long time, we have been hearing that top Democrats and members of the Deep State were going to be arrested and tried for their crimes.

But that has not happened.

Instead, it is conservatives that are being arrested, and the Deep State seems determined to take down as many as they possibly can in 2019.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Trump Administration Warns: Economy May Not Grow During First Quarter

This government shutdown is really starting to take a toll on the U.S. economy.  On Wednesday, the chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers made an absolutely stunning admission.  We all knew that the global economy was slowing down, and we all knew that U.S. economic activity was beginning to sputter, but up until this week, the Trump administration had always insisted that we are not heading for a recession.  Well, all of that changed on Wednesday when Kevin Hassett publicly admitted that we could end up with zero GDP growth during the first quarter of 2019

A top economic adviser to President Donald Trump told CNN on Wednesday that the US economy may show no growth in the first quarter if the federal government shutdown lasts much longer.

White House Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett said in an interview with CNN’s Poppy Harlow that he was not overly worried about the long-term effects of a government shutdown. But after Harlow asked him if the United States could wind up with zero GDP growth this quarter, he conceded that it was possible. “We could, yes,” he said.

With much of the government currently closed, and with no end to the shutdown in sight, it is inevitable that the economic numbers for the first quarter are not going to look as good as they could have been.

But if this shutdown lasts for the entire quarter, that could easily push us into an economic contraction, and that would send shockwaves all over the planet.

And at this point, there is definitely a possibility that this shutdown could go on for a couple more months.  Neither side intends to give in, and things are starting to get very personal.  On Wednesday, Nancy Pelosi made it exceedingly clear that she will not allow President Trump to deliver the State of the Union address at the U.S. Capitol until the shutdown ends under any circumstances…

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dug in Wednesday on her call to delay the State of the Union address even after President Trump vowed to proceed with the speech next week, sending a curt letter making clear she will not allow the event to take place during the government shutdown.

Reacting to Pelosi’s letter, Trump told reporters at the White House “we’ll do something in the alternative,” suggesting a speech of some kind will still happen next week.

This truly is unprecedented.

Donald Trump is the very first president in all of U.S. history to be “disinvited” from delivering the State of the Union address.

And the hundreds of thousands of federal workers that are not receiving paychecks right now are really starting to get restless.  A lot of them have been living paycheck to paycheck, and so missing a couple of paychecks is a really, really big deal to those people.  As Marketwatch recently noted, some of them are actually “turning to food banks to feed their families”…

Within just a few weeks into the government shutdown, people are struggling to cope. We hear stories about people turning to food banks to feed their families. We hear stories about people who are in dire straits because they can’t get loans. We hear stories about people who can’t pay their mortgages. That’s not even one month into the shutdown.

If something this minor can cause such widespread pain and suffering, what would we see if a real crisis actually hit this nation?

Of course, the truth is that most Americans are simply not prepared to handle much of anything, and this is a point that Mac Slavo made quite well in one of his most recent articles

Almost 60% of Americans have less than $1000 in savings for a rainy day fund or an immediate emergency. It’s been ten years since the Great Recession left many Americans jobless with no money, and it appears most have learned nothing. The government shutdown serves as a painful warning and preview for what will happen once unemployment rises from 50-year lows.  Americans are far too dependent on others, including the government, for their survival.

For now, many that are struggling financially due to this shutdown are trying to bridge the gap by going into more debt.

And if the shutdown doesn’t last too much longer, that might work for a lot of people.

But it is very dangerous to go into too much debt, and a large portion of the country has already crossed that line.  For example, one recent survey discovered that approximately a third of all Americans are “afraid they’ll max out their credit card when making a large purchase”

Despite the dangers of high-interest loans, more consumers are testing the limits of plastic.

To that point, more than 1 in 3 people —or 86 million Americans — said they’re afraid they’ll max out their credit card when making a large purchase, according to a new WalletHub credit cards survey. (Most of those polled considered a large purchase as anything over $100.)

The only easy way out of this government shutdown would be for one of the two sides to completely fold, and that would be politically disastrous for whoever decides to do that.

The battle lines have been drawn, and this political game of chicken is going to go on until somebody blinks.

And if nobody blinks for a couple more months, the economic consequences of this government shutdown are likely to be quite severe.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

MAGA Hats Are Becoming A Hot Fashion Trend Among Teens All Over America

More than anything else, wearing a MAGA hat is a way to publicly identify yourself as a Trump supporter.  Of course, other politicians have used apparel to promote themselves in the past, but when Donald Trump introduced the red MAGA cap early on in his presidential run, it changed everything.  Today, the red MAGA hat has become an iconic symbol that is instantly recognizable everywhere in the entire country, but it is also a lightning rod that can provoke a violent backlash from those on the left.  And for millions of teens that wish to rebel against the dominant politically-correct culture of the day, such a symbol can be irresistible, and perhaps that is why so many of them are now wearing MAGA hats.  The following originally comes from a Vox article entitled “It isn’t just the Covington Catholic students — MAGA hats are a teen trend.”

MAGA hats, however, hold special significance for some middle and high school students. Travel to any tourist destination in DC and you’ll see swaths of school groups, many of them wearing hats purchased at nearby souvenir shops.

Of course, Vox is definitely not applauding these teens for wearing these hats.  In fact, the article goes on to state that MAGA hats are “a familiar marker of exclusionary preteen politics”

But for those for whom the phrase “Make America Great Again” refers to only a small slice of who or what “America” is, it isn’t just a hat. One Muslim American mother whose son went on a middle school trip to DC in which “every single white kid besides maybe one or two” returned wearing a MAGA hat said that the red caps became a familiar marker of exclusionary preteen politics.

The author of that article would have never made the same sort of accusation about groups of teens that were wearing Obama caps, because that would not be a politically-correct thing to do.

But somewhere along the line it became acceptable to label Donald Trump, all Republicans and anyone that supports them as “racists”, and all of this constant fueling of anger and hatred is going to have very serious implications for our nation down the road.

If you doubt this, just look at what just happened to “the Covington kids”.  Photos and video clips that were completely taken out of context resulted in calls for violence against them from liberals all across the country

Tucker Carlson excoriated famous liberals and a few anti-Trump GOP who called for the harassment, assault and murder of a group of Kentucky high school students who were falsely accused of bigotry against a Native American man, Nathan Phillips, at a pro-life demonstration on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

Based on an out-of-context “staredown” between student Nick Sandmann and Phillips, high-profile liberals across Twitter went on a blitzkrieg of fake news over the weekend – falsely claiming that the Covington High School group harassed Phillips while chanting “build the wall” – which never happened.

And many public figures jumped at the chance to condemn these kids

Covington Mayor Joe Meyer called the students “appalling.” Presidential candidate and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., praised the Native American for his “dignity and strength” in the face of the teenagers’ “hateful taunts.” CNN’s Reza Aslan asked if anyone had “ever seen a more punchable face than this kid’s.” The ostensibly conservative National Review declared, “The Covington students might as well have spit on the Cross.”

Of course, as more video evidence emerged, it quickly became clear that it was actually a group of radical leftist protesters that were attempting to intimidate those kids.  As one group of protesters shouted insults at the kids that I can’t even print in this space, Nathan Phillips approached Nick Sandmann and started beating a drum just inches from his face.

Who does such a thing to a young kid?

And then somehow the media got everyone to believe that young Nick Sandmann was the aggressor, which was not true at all.  But what most people will ultimately remember about this story is the narrative that Sandmann was “attempting to intimidate” a member of the Native American community while wearing a large red MAGA hat on his head.

The fury that has been directed at Sandmann has been off the charts.  For example, Hollywood producer Jack Morrissey suggested that Sandmann should be fed into a woodchipper

“#MAGAkids go screaming, hats first, into the woodchipper,” Morrissey tweeted with a photo of a woodchipper.

For now, Sandmann still apparently has his Twitter account.

As does Kathy Griffin, who said things about Sandmann on Twitter that I cannot even repeat.

And what was Sandmann’s crime?

Simply smiling in the face of insults and persecution while wearing a MAGA hat.

The White House reached out to the Covington kids to show their support, and there are rumors that they may eventually visit the White House

President Donald Trump’s administration “reached out” to offer support for the Covington Catholic High School students involved in a confrontation at the Lincoln Memorial over the weekend, but officials pushed back on a report that the students would visit the White House this week.

“We’ve reached out and voiced our support,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement Tuesday. “If the president does have them here, it will be sometime after the shutdown, if that happens.”

Hopefully, that visit will take place because after everything that they have been through those kids certainly deserve it.

As for Trump, things are about to get a lot more uncomfortable for him in Washington.  On Tuesday, we learned that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is joining the House Oversight Committee

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) is among a group of progressive lawmakers joining the House Oversight Committee, Politico reported Tuesday.

In addition to Ocasio-Cortez, fellow freshmen Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) are also set to join the committee, as is Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), according to Politico.

If alarm bells are going off in your head, there is a good reason for that, because that is the committee that “is expected to open investigations into Trump and his administration during the new Congress”

The Oversight Committee is the main investigative committee in the House and is expected to open investigations into Trump and his administration during the new Congress.

Ocasio-Cortez is also set to join the House Financial Services Committee, which oversees banks and the financial sector.

We knew that this would happen if the American people gave control of the House to the Democrats.  During the 2018 election, we needed to send Donald Trump some reinforcements, and we didn’t get that done.

But now the 2020 election is coming up, and it will probably be the most pivotal election in any of our lifetimes up to this point.  It will be another opportunity to fundamentally change the direction of our government, and this time we need to make it happen.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

IMF Issues A Worldwide Warning: “The Risk Of A Sharper Decline In Global Growth Has Certainly Increased”

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde made headlines all over the globe this week when she declared that “the risk of a sharper decline in global growth has certainly increased”.  As you will see below, signs of economic trouble are popping up all over the planet, and pretty much just about everyone is now acknowledging that the global economy is slowing down.  But does that mean that we are headed for a global recession in 2019?  Well, things certainly do not look good right now, but there is still time to turn things around.  But in order to turn things in a more positive direction, something has got to be done to stop the downward momentum that seems to be accelerating in the early portion of this year.

On Monday, the IMF slashed their forecast for global economic growth for the second time in three months

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) revised down its estimates for global growth on Monday, warning that the expansion seen in recent years is losing momentum.

The Fund now projects a 3.5 percent growth rate worldwide for 2019 and 3.6 percent for 2020. These are 0.2 and 0.1 percentage points below its last forecasts in October — making it the second downturn revision in three months.

But at least they are still projecting global economic growth this year, and many would argue that “a 3.5 percent growth rate” is wildly optimistic.

At this point, it seems like just about everywhere you look economic confidence is declining.  For example, one recent survey found that the percentage of global CEOs that believe that the world economy will slow down over the next year has jumped dramatically

Rising populism, policy uncertainty and trade conflicts have led to a sharp drop in confidence among global CEOs.

The share of chief executives who think the global economy will slow over the next year has jumped to nearly 30% from 5% in 2018, according to a survey of 1,300 top business leaders by audit giant PwC.

At least publicly, corporate CEOs usually want to put a positive spin on the future, and so it is absolutely astounding that this number has risen so much in a single year.

But there is no denying what is happening around the world right now.  Over in Asia, China just announced that 2018 was the worst year for economic growth that country had seen in 28 years.

In addition, Chinese corporate bond defaults soared to an all-time record high in 2018, and it looks like 2019 could easily be even worse.

On the other side of the globe, Europe’s largest economy actually contracted during the third quarter

In Europe, its largest economic powerhouse Germany has been dented after it was announced the German economy had contracted in the third quarter.

This left Berlin skirting on the fringe of recession territory with economists fearing the most powerful economy in Europe was on the brink of financial chaos.

Europe faces great uncertainty during the months ahead.  There is a very real possibility that we could have a “no deal Brexit”, Italy is teetering on the brink of complete and total financial ruin, and the entire European banking system could begin to collapse at any time.

Meanwhile, we continue to get more indications that the U.S. economy is slowing down as well.

For example, on Monday we got news that JCPenney is “on the precipice of bankruptcy”

JCPenney already finds itself in a precarious position in the first month of 2019: stocks are dwindling, sales are falling, and its desolate boardroom is still waiting for a number of senior vacancies to be filled.

Analysts fear the multitude of problems the department store is now facing points towards a ‘broken business’ balancing on the precipice of bankruptcy.

And just like its once fierce competitor Sears, all 846 of its stores could face closure, potentially affecting thousands of workers and risking another heavy blow to an already beaten-and-bruised retail sector.

Just like Sears, JCPenney is headed for zero, but it will take some time for the process to fully play out.

And the same thing is true for the nation as a whole.  As James Howard Kunstler observed in his most recent article, our financial system “is on a slow boat to oblivion”…

As in this age of Hollywood sequels and prequels, America prefers to recycle old ideas rather than entertain new ones, so you can see exactly how the 2020 presidential election is shaping up to be a replay of the Great Depression, with Roosevelt-to-rescue! — only this time it’ll be with somebody in the role of Eleanor Roosevelt as chief executive. Donald Trump, of course, being the designated bag-holder for all the financial blunders of the past decade, gets to be Herbert Hoover. As was the case in the original, economic depression will segue into war, with maybe not such a happy ending for us as World War Two was.

There should be no doubt that the money part of the story is on a slow boat to oblivion. The world has been running on loans to such a grotesque degree that it’s managed the impressive feat of bankrupting the future. The collateral for all that debt was the conviction that there were ample amounts of future “growth” up ahead to service that debt. That conviction is now evaporating as car sales plummet, and real estate goes south, and nations twang each other over trade, and global supply lines wither. Globalism is unwinding — and not for the first time, either.

Of course, most ordinary Americans are not getting prepared for what is ahead because they do not believe that anything is going to happen.

Despite an abundance of evidence to the contrary, most people believe that the system is stable and that our political leaders can easily fix any problems that may arise.

Unfortunately, the truth is not that simple.  Our problems have been building for decades, and at this point, there is no way that this story is going to end well.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

World War 3 Alert: Iranian Forces Fire Rockets Into Israel, And The IDF Responds With “Waves Of Guided Missiles”

Israel and Iran are edging dangerously close to a state of all-out war.  On Sunday night, Israeli forces rained missiles down on Iranian forces based in the Damascus area “for nearly an hour”.  According to the IDF, this was a response to “dozens” of missiles that were fired by Iranian forces in Syria toward targets in Israel earlier that day.  The Israelis were able to intercept the Iranian missiles, but if any of them had gotten through they could have caused a tremendous amount of damage.  Some of the missiles that Israel fired at the Iranians were reportedly intercepted, but quite a few of them did hit their intended targets. If the violence continues to escalate, we could potentially soon be talking about an all-out war between Israel and Iran in which both sides use their weapons of mass destruction.

The missile strikes against Iranian targets in Damascus made headlines all over the globe.  According to Syrian state media, there were “consecutive waves of guided missiles”

Syrian state media cited a Syrian military source as saying Israel launched an “intense attack through consecutive waves of guided missiles”, but that Syrian air defenses destroyed most of the “hostile targets”.

Witnesses in Damascus said loud explosions rang out in the night sky for nearly an hour.

The Syrians are boasting that they were able to destroy quite a few of the Israeli missiles, but independent observers confirm that quite a few Iranian targets were destroyed.

In the past, the Israelis have not always publicly acknowledged their attacks in Syria, but on Sunday night they released an immediate statement

“We have started striking Iranian Quds targets in Syrian territory,” Israel’s military said in a statement.

“We warn the Syrian Armed Forces against attempting to harm Israeli forces or territory.”

You can see some footage of the missile strikes right here.  Among the targets were “weapons warehouses at the Damascus International Airport”

Targets striked by the IDF, which number at around 10 according to its statement, include weapons warehouses at the Damascus International Airport and in other locations, an Iranian intelligence site and an Iranian training camp in Syria’s south.

Now that the Iranians have been hit so hard, will they respond by striking back at Israel?

If both sides continue to escalate the violence, eventually a “point of no return” will be reached, and then all hell will break loose.

Prior to the IDF missile attacks on Iranian targets, rockets were fired toward the Golan Heights from inside Syria, and Israel blamed those attacks on the Iranians

The Israeli military said earlier on Sunday that missiles fired toward the northern Golan Heights were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system. It added in a statement on Monday that an Iranian force fired these missiles, but said it holds the Syrian regime responsible for any activity in its territory.

It seems extremely unlikely that this conflict will be resolved any time soon.  The Iranians are certainly not going to leave Syria, and they are definitely going to continue to funnel arms and resources to Hezbollah forces in southern Lebanon.

And the Israelis have clearly stated that they are going to resist any Iranian attempts to strengthen Hezbollah or to establish a permanent military presence inside Syria.  In fact, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu couldn’t have been any clearer when he said this to reporters

“We have a permanent policy, to strike at the Iranian entrenchment in Syria and hurt whoever tries to hurt us,”Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said.

If a full-blown war erupts in the days ahead, Israel will almost certainly find itself fighting Iran, Syria and Hezbollah simultaneously.  Of course Hezbollah is essentially an Iranian proxy, and at this point, they have between 130,000 and 150,000 missiles aimed at Israel.  When war finally comes, it will be extremely bloody and extremely destructive.

Tonight, we are closer to such a war than ever.  The Iranians and the Israelis absolutely hate one another, and now they are firing missiles at one another.

It isn’t going to take much to push the two sides over the edge, and if that happens we are just a hop, a skip and a jump away from the start of World War 3.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

President Trump Just “Dunked” On Nancy Pelosi With A Power Move That “Has Never Happened In The Annals Of Congressional History”

President Trump has done it again.  Less than 24 hours after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi essentially “disinvited” him from delivering the State of the Union address on January 29th, President Trump delivered a power move that we will be talking about forever.  Just minutes before a congressional delegation including Pelosi was scheduled to leave on a seven day trip to the Middle East, Trump abruptly canceled the Air Force flight that they were supposed to be riding on.  Top Democratic lawmakers were literally sitting on the bus that was to take them to the plane when they found out about the news.  Needless to say, they were absolutely enraged, and they began furiously working their phones in order to find a solution.  But of course Trump would not relent, and everybody in the entire country is talking about this epic troll move.  In fact, even CNN is admitting that Donald Trump “dunked” on Nancy Pelosi.

In his letter to Pelosi explaining this cancellation, Trump told her that if she wanted to fly commercial instead of taking an Air Force jet that would “be your prerogative”.  The following comes from Fox News

“Due to the Shutdown, I am sorry to inform you that your trip to Brussels, Egypt, and Afghanistan has been postponed. We will reschedule this seven-day excursion when the Shutdown is over. In light of the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay, I am sure you would agree that postponing this public relations event is totally appropriate,” Trump wrote.

“I also feel that, during this period, it would be better if you were in Washington negotiating with me and joining the Strong Border Security movement to end the Shutdown. Obviously, if you would like to make your journey by flying commercial, that would certainly be your prerogative.”

Members of Congress were literally sitting on the bus waiting to go when they received this letter, and Chad Pergram reported that “furious calls” were going back and forth in a desperate attempt to salvage the trip…

Members are sitting on the USAF bus on CapHill they wait to see if they are departing on overseas trip Trump canceled. Fox is told there are furious calls going back and forth now between the Hill, State, Pentagon and White House.

As the stunned Democrats tried to figure out what to do, the Air Force bus began circling the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to keep away from pesky reporters.

But of course eventually it become clear that Trump would not move, and the bus returned to the U.S. Capitol and the highly embarrassed lawmakers got off and went back inside

The stunned officials were trying to understand whether their trip really was canceled. Phone calls and messages were flying between those on the bus and officials inside the Capitol, according to aides.

Suddenly, the bus started rolling to the Senate side of the Capitol. It left the Capitol complex and drove slowly in front of the Supreme Court.

Less than five minutes later, the bus was in front of the House chamber again, stunning the jacket-less reporters, photographers and camera operators who were almost sweating in 35-degree weather chasing after the bus. The lawmakers eventually got off the bus but wouldn’t comment extensively on the situation.

Needless to say, things are getting personal now.

After disembarking from the bus, Democrat Adam Schiff told reporters that this kind of thing “has never happened in the annals of congressional history”

“This is obviously an action directed at the speaker,” Schiff told reporters after exiting the bus. “And we think, as far as we can tell, this has never happened in the annals of congressional history.”

Donald Trump has always said that when people hit him, he always hits back harder.

And on Thursday he delivered an “epic troll move” that is going to be difficult to top.  We will be talking about Nancy Pelosi’s “bus to nowhere” for a very, very long time.

But this was not just an arbitrary decision by Trump.  Because of the government shutdown, he also canceled his trip to the World Economic Forum

President Donald Trump has canceled his delegation’s trip to the World Economic Forum, citing the ongoing partial government shutdown.

“Out of consideration for the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay and to ensure his team can assist as needed, President Trump has canceled his Delegation’s trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland,” press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a late Thursday statement.

After Thursday, the odds of a compromise between President Trump and the Democrats went way, way down.

Nancy Pelosi embarrassed Trump when she “disinvited” him from delivering the State of the Union address, and now President Trump has deeply embarrassed Nancy Pelosi by canceling her Middle East tour at the last moment.

Both sides are going to continue to hammer one another, and it is clear that Trump could use some more friends in Washington.  Unfortunately, we are likely to have endless gridlock in D.C. for the next two years, and at this point neither side appears to have a strong incentive to end the government shutdown

Pelosi sees a Democratic base that is entirely uninterested in giving Trump his border wall and a series of national polls that suggest the public blames the President and his party more than congressional Democrats for the ongoing shutdown. Combine those two factors, and Pelosi has zero incentive to give in to Trump.

Trump, of course, has made a political career of doing just this — smashing through normal behavior, acting impulsively and impetuously, taking his ball and going home when he doesn’t get exactly what he wants. If Pelosi’s political calculations make her unlikely to take the high road any time soon, Trump’s personality doesn’t even allow him to see that a high road exists.

So this shutdown is likely to keep on going for an extended period of time, and it has become clear that the battle in Washington has only just begun.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Shock Survey: 59 Percent Of Americans Support Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Proposal To Raise The Top Tax Rate To 70%

Although she has only been in Congress for less than a month, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is getting more attention than any other member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  She has been setting social media ablaze with her posts about the inner workings of Congress, the mainstream media is constantly gushing about her, and now she has been tapped to teach her fellow Democrats “how to be good at Twitter”.  She is getting rave reviews for taking on the corrupt establishment in both political parties, but the bad news is that she literally doesn’t know what she is talking about on virtually every single important issue.  She is like a five-year-old kid that has been set free to run wild in a toy store, and her misdirected enthusiasm is bound to get her into all sorts of trouble.

It is a good thing to be idealistic, as long as you have the right ideals.

Unfortunately for Ocasio-Cortez, her head has been filled with all sorts of socialist nonsense.  During a recent interview with 60 Minutes, she proposed raising the top income tax rate to “as high as 60 or 70 percent”

“You look at our tax rates back in the ’60s and when you have a progressive tax rate system, your tax rate, let’s say from zero to $75,000, may be 10 percent or 15 percent, etc. But once you get to the tippy-tops —  on your 10 millionth dollar — sometimes you see tax rates as high as 60 or 70 percent. That doesn’t mean all $10 million are taxed at an extremely high rate, but it means that as you climb up this ladder, you should be contributing more.”

Do you think that anyone is going to want to work hard to earn an extra dollar once their income reaches a level where each extra dollar is being taxed at 70 percent?

The truth is that socialism kills the incentive to work hard, and it is hard work that fuels economic growth.

If somebody works really hard to earn a dollar, it is immoral for somebody else to come in and grab 70 percent of that dollar just because they can.  But an increasing percentage of Americans are fully embracing the idea of “radical wealth redistribution”, and a shocking new poll contains some numbers that are almost too crazy to believe.

According to this new survey, 59 percent of all Americans support raising the highest tax rate to 70 percent

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and her Republican critics have both called her proposal to dramatically increase America’s highest tax rate “radical” but a new poll released Tuesday indicates that a majority of Americans agrees with the idea.

In the latest The Hill-HarrisX survey — conducted Jan. 12 and 13 after the newly elected congresswoman called for the U.S. to raise its highest tax rate to 70 percent — a sizable majority of registered voters, 59 percent, supports the concept.

Even as I write this article, I am still having a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that most Americans want tax rates to be that high.

But this is the reality of the “Robin Hood mentality” that is sweeping the nation.  Most people seem to think that we should “take from the rich” and “give to the poor”, and that even includes a lot of so-called “conservatives”.

In fact, that same survey found that 45 percent of Republicans actually support what Ocasio-Cortez is proposing…

Increasing the highest tax bracket to 70 percent garners a surprising amount of support among Republican voters. In the Hill-HarrisX poll, 45 percent of GOP voters say they favor it while 55 percent are opposed to it.

Independent voters who were contacted backed the tax idea by a 60 to 40 percent margin while Democratic ones favored it, 71 percent to 29 percent.

What in the world has happened to us?

We have already traveled very far down the road toward socialism, and now key leaders on the left such as Ocasio-Cortez want to take us the rest of the way.

This is why we need a new generation of leaders in America that are willing to do more than just get elected to office.  We need educators that are willing to work hard to win the battle for hearts and minds.  We need men and women of character that will be able to communicate why the values that America was founded upon are so great and why we need to return to them.  And we need fighters that have the courage to intellectually contend for the future of our nation while there is still time to do so.

Even though virtually everything that she believes is wrong, at least Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has enough passion to stand up for what she believes.  That is more than can be said for the soy latte drinking wimps on the right that never want to offend anyone so that they can extend their political careers for as long as possible.

At this point, the left is rapidly taking control of the national conversation, and Rasmussen just released a national survey that shows that if Ocasio-Cortez ran for president in 2020 she would almost have as much support as Trump

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that, if the 2020 presidential race was between Trump and Ocasio-Cortez, 43% of Likely U.S. Voters would vote for Trump, while 40% would vote for Ocasio-Cortez. A sizable 17% are undecided.

Fortunately, Ocasio-Cortez is not old enough to run for president yet.

But someday she will be.

We are in a tremendous amount of trouble as a nation, and we are rapidly running out of time to do anything about it.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

New Numbers Indicate Global Economic Slowdown Far More Advanced Than Assumed

We continue to get more confirmation that the global economy is slowing down substantially.  On Monday, it was China’s turn to surprise analysts, and the numbers that they just released are absolutely stunning.  When Chinese imports and exports are both expanding, that is a clear sign that the global economy is running on all cylinders, but when both of them are contracting that is an indication that huge trouble is ahead.  And the experts were certainly anticipating substantial increases in both categories in December, but instead, there were huge declines.  There is no possible way to spin these numbers to make them look good…

Data from China showed imports fell 7.6 percent year-on-year in December while analysts had predicted a 5-percent rise. Exports dropped 4.4 percent, confounding expectations for a 3-percent gain.

China now accounts for more total global trade than the United States does, and the fact that the numbers for the global economy’s number one trade hub are falling this dramatically is a major warning sign.

And of course it isn’t just China that is experiencing trouble.  In fact, we just witnessed the worst industrial output numbers in Europe “in nearly three years”

Adding to the gloom were weak industrial output numbers from the euro zone, which showed the largest fall in nearly three years.

Softening demand has been felt around the world, with sales of goods ranging from iPhones to automobiles slowing, prompting profit warnings from Apple among others.

If we were headed for a major global recession, these are exactly the types of news stories that we would expect to see.

We also continue to get more indications that the U.S. economy is slowing down significantly.  For example, sales of new homes in the U.S. were down 19 percent in November and 18 percent in December

Sales of newly built homes fell 18 percent in December compared with December of 2017, according to data compiled by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, a California-based housing research and analytics firm.

Due to the partial government shutdown, official government figures on home sales for November and December have not been released.

Sales were also down a steep 19 percent annually in November, according to JBRC’s analysts.

Those are horrific numbers, and they are very reminiscent of what we witnessed back in 2008.

And we also just learned that employers are cutting back on hiring new college grads for the first time in eight years

new report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) shows that for the first time in eight years, managers are pulling back the reins on hiring college grads, with a projected 1.3 percent decrease from last year. Additionally, a survey from Monster.com found that of 350 college students polled, 75 percent don’t have a job lined up yet.

I feel really bad for those that are getting ready to graduate from college, because I know what it is like to graduate in the middle of an economic downturn.  At the time, many of my friends took whatever jobs they possibly could, and some of them never really got on the right track after that.

But the economic environment that is ahead will be much worse than any of the minor recessions that the U.S. has experienced in the past, and that means things are going to be extremely tough for our college graduates.  And the total amount of student loan debt in this country has roughly tripled over the last decade, and so a lot of these young people are going to enter the real world with crippling amounts of debt but without the good jobs that they were promised would be there upon graduation.

As economic conditions have begun to deteriorate, I have had more people begin to ask me about what they can do to get prepared for what is coming.  And I always start off by telling them the exact same thing.  Today, 78 percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, but when an economic downturn strikes that is precisely what you do not want to be doing.

Some people that I hear from insist that there is no possible way that they can put together an emergency fund because they are already spending everything that they are bringing in.

And yes, it is true that there are some people out there that are so financially stretched that they literally do not have a single penny to spare even though they are being extremely frugal, but the majority of us definitely have areas where we can cut back.

I realize that “cutting back” does not sound fun.  But not being able to pay your mortgage when things get really bad will be a whole lot less fun.

Right now people should be focusing on reducing expenses and trying to make some extra money.  Use whatever time we have left before things get really bad to put yourself into a better financial position.  If you have at least a little bit of money to fall back on, it will make your life much less stressful in the long run.

In addition, anything that you can do to become more independent of the system is a good thing.  On a very basic level, learning to grow a garden can end up saving you a ton of money.  I was just at the grocery store earlier today, and food is getting really expensive.  When the Federal Reserve says that we are in a “low inflation” environment, I always wonder what world they are living on.

When I got up to the register today, I almost felt like they were going to ask me what organ I wanted to donate in order to pay for my groceries.  Unfortunately, the price of food right now is actually quite low compared to what it is going to be in the days ahead.

So I guess I shouldn’t complain too much.

I think that I have just been in a foul mood all day ever since I came across Gillette’s new “toxic masculinity” ad.  I will have quite a bit to say about that ad later this evening on EndOfTheAmericanDream.com.

Ladies and gentlemen, 2019 is off to quite a rough start, and things are likely to get a whole lot rougher.

As always, let us hope for the best, but let us also get prepared for the worst.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

#BoycottGillette: The Proper Response To The Insulting Of All Men With Their “Toxic Masculinity” Ad

Does Gillette really think that they are going to sell more razors to men after millions of men watch their horrific new ad that is essentially an all-out assault on masculinity?  The new ad is entitled “We Believe: The Best Men Can Be”, and within the first few seconds, the term “toxic masculinity” is used.  This is a deeply, deeply offensive term, and it has no place in our society.  After all, could you imagine the uproar that would ensue if a large corporation dared to use the term “toxic femininity” in an advertisement?  Women would be freaking out from coast to coast, and for good reason.  There would simply be no excuse for using the term “toxic femininity”, and there is simply no excuse for using the term “toxic masculinity”.  Gillette owes every man in America an apology, and they better make it a good one.

Just yesterday I wrote an article about the American Psychological Association’s new guidelines for men which say that “traditional masculinity” is “harmful”, and so when I heard that Gillette had put out this new ad it got my attention right away.  Over on YouTube, this ad has already been watched more than 1.4 million times.  It has 16,000 likes and more than 159,000 dislikes.  That is almost a ten to one margin, and it is clear that this ad is backfiring spectacularly.  Here is how Breitbart described this deeply offensive ad

A new ad from P&G razor brand Gillette encourages men to reexamine themselves and the way that they raise young boys. The ad, which is called “We Believe: The Best Men Can Be,” is essentially a two-minute broad generalization about the way that men act and think.

The ad depicts men getting into fights, standing in front of barbecue grills, and verbally harassing women. The ad also heavily features news clips discussing the recent #MeToo movement.

Look, nobody approves of bullying or sexual harassment.  But to make an ad which suggests that “masculinity” is defined by these sorts of behaviors is fundamentally wrong, and it is going to turn off millions of potential customers.  I really like how Paul Joseph Watson made this point

Insulting most of your own customers by insinuating they’re all would-be sexual abusers & creeps has to be one of the most original marketing campaigns in decades.

Somebody at Gillette needs to be fired over this.

Millions of men are going to quit buying Gillette razors because of this ad, and many of them will never forgive Gillette no matter how contrite the company may appear to be in the future.

And they should definitely realize that they have messed up really, really badly if even Piers Morgan is threatening to stop using their products

I’ve used  razors my entire adult life but this absurd virtue-signalling PC guff may drive me away to a company less eager to fuel the current pathetic global assault on masculinity.

Perhaps some advertising exec thought it would be a grand idea for Gillette to jump on the social justice bandwagon.  After all, it seems to be the hot thing to do.

But to conduct a direct attack on masculinity when nearly all of your customers are men seems to be incredibly foolish.

Of course, I am not saying that all men are angels.  In fact, earlier today I came across an article about a horrible 32-year-old doctor that is calling his pregnant wife “lazy” and is upset that she is only working 30 hours a week.  But such behavior does not have anything to do with masculinity.  Rather, that is called being a jerk.

And there is certainly nothing wrong with urging all of us to be the best people that we can possibly become.  We should never be afraid to challenge one another to be better and to set higher standards, and on some level, I think that is what this ad was attempting to do.

But this ad was so much more than that.  It was essentially an all-out attack on masculinity, and it is very easy to understand why virtually every man that watches this ad comes away deeply offended.

So what should we do about it?

I like what one Twitter user is suggesting

“I am taking action,” one Twitter user said in response to Gillette’s call for action. “I’m researching every product made by Proctor & Gamble, throwing any I have in the trash, and never buying any of them again until everyone involved in this ad from top to bottom is fired and the company issues a public apology.”

Let’s boycott all Gillette products until they apologize to us.

And the apology needs to have the same scale and scope as the original ad did.  In other words, Gillette should make a new advertisement of similar length apologizing for the first ad, and they should spend at least as much money promoting it.

Of course, they are not likely to do that, because it would not be the politically-correct thing to do.

As I stated yesterday, the elite are absolutely determined to permanently change our culture, and they are becoming more overt about it over time.

In the old days, big corporations would stay out of such controversies in order to avoid offending potential customers, but now they think that they can get away with it.

And the only thing that is going to make them think otherwise is if we quit buying their products, and so that is precisely what we need to do.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Magma Under Yellowstone Supervolcano “Rising” – Scientists Warn Eruption Would Devastate Entire Planet

Could it be possible that a full-blown eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano is not too far away?  All over the world seismic activity has been increasing in recent years, and this process seems to have accelerated during the early days of 2019.  In particular, quite a few once dormant volcanoes are springing to life again, and this has many concerned about what could potentially happen at Yellowstone.  Of course, Yellowstone has never been “dormant”, but there have been new signs of life over the past six months.  Entirely new geysers have sprung out of the ground, Steamboat Geyser has been the most active that it has been in decades, and some geysers have even been shooting “debris and rocks” into the sky.  And now we are being told that “a 465-mile-long piece of molten rock” is “rising” directly under Yellowstone

SCIENTISTS are closely monitoring a 465-mile-long piece of molten rock rising below the Yellowstone caldera, a bombshell documentary has revealed.

The supervolcano, located in Yellowstone National Park, has erupted three times in history – 2.1 million years ago, 1.2 million years ago and 640,000 years ago. Volcanoes typically blow when molten rock, known as magma, rises to the surface following the Earth’s mantle melting due to tectonic plates shifting. However, geologists have revealed how Yellowstone’s magma chamber, which sits on top of the magma plume, is slowly rising each year.

Hopefully, nothing major will happen at Yellowstone for a very long time.

But experts assure us that another full-blown eruption will take place one day, and when it does, it could potentially create a global “volcanic winter” which would make growing crops almost impossible and ultimately cause horrific global famines.  The following quote comes from Dr. Christopher Kilburn

“As a result of which, the amount of sunlight reaching the surface of the earth drops and, as a consequence of that, it will trigger what is called a volcanic winter in that the temperatures never get a chance to recover.

“So you go through winter, the ash veil prevents the sun from warming up the earth seasonally so you just get continued winters which might trigger, ultimately, extensive ice coverage.”

If Yellowstone were to erupt today, none of our lives would ever be the same again from that moment on.

We are talking about a disaster that is on a scale that most of us couldn’t even imagine, and it would instantly render most of the country completely uninhabitable.  The following is an extended excerpt from one of my previous articles about Yellowstone

I would like to try to describe for you what a full-blown eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano would mean for this country.

Hundreds of cubic miles of ash, rock and lava would be blasted into the atmosphere, and this would likely plunge much of the northern hemisphere into several days of complete darkness. Virtually everything within 100 miles of Yellowstone would be immediately killed, but a much more cruel fate would befall those that live in major cities outside of the immediate blast zone such as Salt Lake City and Denver.

Hot volcanic ash, rock and dust would rain down on those cities literally for weeks. In the end, it would be extremely difficult for anyone living in those communities to survive. In fact, it has been estimated that 90 percent of all people living within 600 miles of Yellowstone would be killed.

Experts project that such an eruption would dump a layer of volcanic ash that is at least 10 feet deep up to 1,000 miles away, and approximately two-thirds of the United States would suddenly become uninhabitable. The volcanic ash would severely contaminate most of our water supplies, and growing food in the middle of the country would become next to impossible.

In other words, it would be the end of our country as we know it today.

The rest of the planet, and this would especially be true for the northern hemisphere, would experience what is known as a “nuclear winter”. An extreme period of “global cooling” would take place, and temperatures around the world would fall by up to 20 degrees. Crops would fail all over the planet, and severe famine would sweep the globe.

In the end, billions could die.

Scientists are constantly monitoring Yellowstone for potential signs of an eruption, but the truth is that a major disaster of this magnitude would probably come with little or no warning.

It is undeniable that in recent months there have been signs of increased activity at Yellowstone.  That doesn’t mean that an eruption is imminent, but without a doubt, it should be a cause for concern.

And this is especially true considering all of the shaking that we are seeing elsewhere around the globe.  Just within the past few days, we have seen a magnitude 4.1 earthquake hit California and a magnitude 5.1 earthquake near Anchorage, Alaska.  The latter one definitely shook a lot of people up

Residents took to earthquake monitoring site EMSC to share their experiences. One said: “Long and big. Significant anxiety spike!

Another added: “That was scary. Hard quake.”

We are not even to the middle of January, and there have already been more than 100 significant earthquakes in Alaska so far this year.

That is not normal.

Our planet appears to be going through some major changes, and many believe that all of this seismic activity is an indication that things are about to become quite apocalyptic.  I am personally of the opinion that we are going to continue to see a rise in the number of earthquakes and that we are going to continue to see a rise in the number of volcanic eruptions.

As I have said before, the shell of our planet is cracked, and we are just floating on the pieces.  Now those pieces appear to be getting increasingly unstable, and that is going to affect us in ways that most people cannot even imagine right now.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

A Plague Of Locusts Hits Mecca And Earth’s Magnetic Pole Is Experiencing A “Sudden Shift”

Really strange things are starting to happen all over the world.  We’ll talk about “the North Pole’s sudden shift” later in this article, but first I want to focus on the very unusual event which just took place in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.  A “massive swarm” of thousands upon thousands of black locusts descended upon the holiest site in Islam, and video of this “plague” is understandably causing quite a stir all over social media.  The following comes from the Times Of Israel

massive swarm of locusts plagued Mecca, Saudi Arabia, earlier this week, prompting authorities at Islam’s holiest site to launch a cleaning operation to remove them.

Videos posted to social media showed the insects swarming around cleaners and worshipers in the city’s Grand Mosque, where millions of Muslim pilgrims congregate every year.

And this was not just a temporary phenomenon.  Once the locusts arrived, they didn’t want to leave, and it is being reported that they were “covering the walls of the mosque”

A closer-up view shows them swarming in all directions, over the heads of the cleaners in green uniforms attempting to deal with them.

Another shot shows the insects covering the walls of the mosque as they swarmed across the site.

According to Saudi authorities, it took 22 teams consisting of a total of 138 people to clean up the infestation.

Meanwhile, the behavior of our planet is once again making headlines.  According to scientists, the magnetic North Pole is making a “sudden shift” away from Canada and toward Russia

Deep beneath the Earth’s surface, liquid iron is sloshing around at its core, causing the North Pole to move away from Canada and towards Siberia. This has caused global geomagnetism experts to undergo an urgent update of the World Magnetic Model where it will alter where exactly North Pole is. The next update was not scheduled to happen until 2020, but due to the North Pole’s sudden shift, researchers have to bring it forward.

These days the vast majority of us heavily use GPS to get around, and the rapid movement of the magnetic North Pole is causing serious navigation errors

Precision of where the North Pole is needed for GPS across the globe, and currently is is close to exceeding “the acceptable (safe) limit for navigational errors,” the journal Nature reports.

Arnaud Chulliat, a geomagnetist at the University of Colorado Boulder and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA’s) National Centers for Environmental Information, said: “The error is increasing all the time.

“The fact that the pole is going fast makes this region more prone to large errors.”

In essence, GPS is losing its GPS.

Of course, the magnetic North Pole has always been moving a little bit, but in recent years that movement has been greatly accelerating

But the movement of the north magnetic pole has been the object of study since 1831. Initially, it was tracked moving into the Arctic Ocean at a rate of about 15km each year. But, since the mid 1990s, it has picked up speed.

It’s now shifting at a rate of about 55km a year.

At the same time, Earth’s magnetic field has been getting weaker and weaker, and this has many experts deeply concerned that we could soon experience a catastrophic pole flip.  The following comes from one of my previous articles

The Earth’s magnetic field is steadily getting weaker, and scientists are warning that it could soon flip. If that happens, it will be a cataclysmic event beyond anything that we have ever experienced before. Of course most people never even give much thought to the giant magnetic field that surrounds our planet, but without it modern society would simply not be possible. The magnetic field provides protection for the electrical grid which powers our homes, our businesses, our hospitals, our stores, our banks, our computers and our televisions. It is essentially an enormous “force field” that protects our world from solar storms and cosmic radiation. Right now we take that protection for granted, but scientists tell us that Earth’s magnetic field has flipped before, and that it could soon happen again.

Basically, we are talking about an event that would be even worse than a direct hit from a massive electromagnetic pulse from the sun.

If a sudden pole flip happened today, electronic devices all over the world would be crippled, and scientists tell us that we would be facing “trillions of dollars in damage”

According to a team of international scientists, including from the Australian National University (ANU), such an event in the future would increase our planet’s exposure to the Sun’s radiation, and could cause trillions of dollars in damage by decimating power and communications systems across the globe.

We truly live in apocalyptic times, although most people still don’t seem to understand what is happening.

Our planet is changing.  Earlier this week I wrote about the fact that Alaska had been hit by 81 significant earthquakes during the first nine days of 2019.  Large quakes are rattling locations all along the Ring of Fire, once dormant volcanoes are going off like firecrackers all over the globe, and the tsunami that just struck Indonesia once again reminded us of how vulnerable we really are to major natural disasters.

Right now the mainstream media in the United States is keenly focused on the government shutdown, but in the grander scheme of things the shutdown is small potatoes compared to some of the other things that are happening.

2019 has gotten off to a very strange start, and I have a feeling that things are about to get a whole lot stranger.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Can You Guess The Identity Of Donald Trump’s Toughest Potential Opponent In 2020?

At this moment the race for the Democratic nomination in 2020 appears to be completely wide open, but there is one potential candidate lurking in the shadows that could change everything.  For a moment, I would like you to imagine what a perfect presidential candidate for the Democrats in 2020 would look like.  In this politically correct era, it would help if the candidate was a woman, and it would definitely be a plus if she could appeal to key groups of minority voters.  Being a hero to the LGBT community would be important for any Democratic candidate, and it would also have to be someone that could bring together the “Sanders wing” and the “Clinton wing” of the party.  But none of those things would really matter without national name recognition, and so a dream candidate for the Democrats would be someone that everybody already knows and that much of the nation already loves.

Well, it just so happens that such a potential candidate actually exists.  She is the most admired woman in America by a wide margin, and she is married to the most admired man in America.  She released her latest book in November, and it is still in the number one position on Amazon.  Her national book tour has been packing out stadiums all over the country, and she has a net worth of more than 40 million dollars.  She is a highly educated professional, she is very charismatic, and she has already spent eight years in the White House.

Of course the woman that I am talking about is Michelle Obama.

The bad news for Democrats is that she has always said that she will never run for president.

But the good news for Democrats is that in recent months she has been acting like she is gearing up for a run in 2020.

No other potential Democratic candidate can draw crowds like Michelle Obama can.  She has been selling out her national book tour while charging “as much as $597.00 to $1,435 per ticket”.  A clear effort is being made to help her step out from the long shadow of her husband, and it looks like the stage is being set for her to become the “reluctant hero” that will “save the nation from Trump” in 2020.

Because at this point the Democrats do not have a frontrunner.  Instead, what they have is a giant mess.  The following comes from the New York Times

As the 2020 Democratic primary gets underway, the defining characteristic of this first stage of the race is the sheer uncertainty about who is even running. More than 30 Democrats are mulling presidential bids, but hardly any of them qualify as an instant front-runner or a gifted, tested campaigner, and some of the biggest names could pass in the end.

According to Vox, there are 34 Democrats that are currently “considering” running for president.  Of course not all of them will run, but it looks like it could be an extremely crowded race.

But all of that would change if Michelle Obama decides to run.

At this point Joe Biden is leading the early polls, but that is only because he is the closest thing to Barack Obama that Democratic voters currently have.  If they could have an actual Obama instead, they would abandon Biden in a heartbeat.

Beto O’Rourke is one of the other potential candidates that has been generating some enthusiasm, but his overly eager approach is falling flat with a lot of top Democrats.  For example, this week he posted a video of himself receiving a dental cleaning

“So I’m here at the dentist and we’re going to continue our series on the people of the border,” O’Rourke says in a video posted on Instagram as he receives a dental cleaning.

O’Rourke, who represented a district in El Paso, then flips the camera in the direction of his hygienist, Diana, who recounts her time growing up near the U.S.-Mexico border.

Look, I am all in favor of politicians using social media, but nobody wants to see that.

And this is one of the key factors that would separate Michelle Obama from the rest of the pack.  The Obamas understand how to campaign properly, and Michelle Obama’s national tour to promote her memoir entitled “Becoming” sure looks and feels like a presidential campaign tour.  The following comes from Clifford Nichols

Managed by the same company that promotes Beyoncé’s concert tours, the ten stops of the first leg of her national tour in November and December of 2018 were at arenas with seating capacities hovering around 20,000, not only in Washington, D.C., but also in states like New York, Massachusetts, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Tennessee, Illinois, California, and Georgia.

And then, to begin this New Year, a few days ago she announced that 14 additional speaking engagements have now been scheduled — so far — to allow even more sell-out crowds to attend her “A Conversation with Michelle Obama” tour in similarly huge venues located this time around in Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Texas, Minnesota, Wisconsin,Ohio, and Florida.

She is being put center stage, and her husband has faded into the background.

This is being done for a reason.

And there is certainly precedent for this king of thing.  George W. Bush followed in the footsteps of his father George H.W. Bush, and Hillary Clinton followed in the footsteps of her husband Bill Clinton.

Some would argue that Michelle Obama is not qualified to be president, and that is true.

But the cold, hard reality of the matter is that almost every politician that the American people have sent to Washington is unqualified to be there.

Politics in America has not been about qualifications for a very long time.  Rather, politics in America is all about winning elections, and the Obamas know how to do that.

And if you are going to run for president, it certainly helps to be the most admired woman in America

Former first lady Michelle Obama has been named America’s most admired woman of 2018, according to a Gallup poll. This is the first time in 17 years that someone other than Hillary Clinton was at the top of the list, according to Gallup.  As for the most admired man, former President Barack Obama won for the 11th year in a row.

In fact, Michelle Obama had more support in that survey than Hillary Clinton and Oprah Winfrey combined.

But we need to remember that she has always said that she will never run for president, and perhaps she never will.

In the end, this book tour and all of this promotion could simply be about making as much money as possible.

If that is the case, that sure will be good news for Donald Trump, because Michelle Obama would definitely be his toughest potential opponent in 2020.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

2019: 81 Significant Earthquakes In Alaska So Far

Something is happening to our planet.  The mainstream media is not talking much about this, and the experts assure us that everything is going to be just fine, but the truth is that we have been witnessing an unusual amount of seismic activity all over the world.  Up until just recently, most of the shaking has been elsewhere on the globe, and so it has been easy for most Americans to ignore.  But now North America is rattling, and that isn’t going to be so easy to brush aside.  In fact, 2019 has barely even gotten started and the state of Alaska has already been hit by 81 significant earthquakes

Alaska notoriously experiences a lot of seismic activity, and in the first nine days of 2019 has been shaken by 81 earthquakes of a magnitude 2.5 or higher according to the United States Geological Survey. Of these, five have been magnitude 4.5 or higher, with one reaching magnitude 6.1. This huge quake took place 54km south-southwest of Tanaga Volcano on January 5.

Is this normal?

No, of course, it is not normal.  And the heightened seismic activity that has been taking place all along the Ring of Fire is not normal either.  Just ask the people that were devastated by the massive tsunami that just hit Indonesia.

We live at a time when major Earth changes are taking place, and this has tremendous implications for all of us.  In particular, the hundreds of millions of people that live along the perimeter of the Pacific Ocean need to understand that the Ring of Fire has entered a perilous new phase.  If seismic activity continues to escalate, we could soon be talking about major disasters in which millions of people suddenly die.

Sadly, I am not exaggerating about that one bit.

Thankfully the southern coastline of Alaska is not heavily populated, because that is where one of the most dangerous subduction zones in the entire world is located

It is located along the notorious Ring of Fire, a horseshoe-shaped arc in the Pacific Ocean which joins the Pacific and North American plates.

This area – where two of the Earth’s tectonic plates meet – is marked by zones known as subduction zones.

And one of the fastest moving underwater tectonic faults is one which lies in southeastern Alaska according to the USGS.

It is known as “the Denali Fault”, and it has even more destructive potential than the San Andreas Fault does.  The following comes from Wikipedia

The Denali Fault is located in Alaska’s Denali National Parkand to the east. This National Park includes part of a massive mountain range more than 600 miles long. Along the Denali Fault, lateral and vertical offset movement is taking place (as evidenced by many earthquakes in the region).

The steep north face of Denali, known as the Wickersham Wall, rises 15000 feet from its base, and is a result of this relatively recent movement.

If you are wondering, the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that recently shook Anchorage did not happen along the Denali fault.

But it was still the most destructive quake to hit Alaska in many years, and it really shook up many of those that live in the region.  For example, ever since the earthquake happened one little girl will not go to sleep at night without a 100 pound pit bull tucked in right next to her

A little toddler is filmed tucking in her 100lbs pit bull after becoming so scared to sleep without him.

Adalynn Leary became too scared to sleep without her ‘best friend and bodyguard’ since their home in Alaska was hit by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake.

Her father Kyle Leary said that his daughter cuddles Fury as he helps ease her anxiety.

Hopefully, that pit bull is well trained because we have all read about what they can do when they get upset about something.

Anyway, it isn’t just Alaska that has been hit by unusual earthquakes lately.  Earlier this week, the state of Mississippi was struck by a magnitude 3.7 earthquake

A 3.7 magnitude earthquake was reported in Hollandale, Mississippi around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Shaking was felt throughout Washington County, however, according to Emergency Management Division Manager David Burford, there have been no reports of any damage. “The ground shook, but not for long.”

The earthquake was at a depth of 5 kilometers, which is very shallow.

Earthquakes are not supposed to happen in Mississippi.

And last month eastern Tennessee was hit by the largest earthquake that it had experienced in 45 years.

Was that just another “coincidence”, or was it part of an overall trend that is emerging?

Globally, we have seen major earthquakes of at least magnitude 6.0 hit JapanBrazil, and Indonesia over the last several days.

More “coincidences”?

We have entered a period of time when earthquakes are striking in diverse places, and many believe that this is just the beginning.

I understand that the mainstream media is completely obsessed with all things related to President Trump right now, but the changes that are happening to our planet are going to become a bigger and bigger story.

And someday in the not too distant future, an absolutely massive seismic event will hit a major population center, and at that point, everything will begin to change.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

$3.5 Trillion A Year: America’s Health Care System Has Become One Of The World’s Largest Money Making Scams

If the U.S. health care system was a country, it would have the fifth largest GDP on the entire planet.  At this point, only the United States, China, Japan and Germany have a GDP that is larger than the 3.5 trillion dollar U.S. health care market.  If that sounds obscene to you, that is because it is obscene.  We should want people to be attracted to the health care industry because they truly want to help people that are suffering, but instead, the primary reason why people are drawn to the health care industry these days is because of the giant mountains of money that are being made.  Like so many other things in our society, the health care industry is all about the pursuit of the almighty dollar, and that is just wrong.

In order to keep this giant money machine rolling, the health care industry has to do an enormous amount of marketing.  If you can believe it, a study that was just published found that at least 30 billion dollars a year is spent on such marketing.

Hoping to earn its share of the $3.5 trillion health care market, the medical industry is pouring more money than ever into advertising its products — from high-priced prescriptions to do-it-yourself genetic tests and unapproved stem cell treatments.

Spending on health care marketing nearly doubled from 1997 to 2016, soaring to at least $30 billion a year, according to a study published Tuesday in JAMA.

This marketing takes many different forms, but perhaps the most obnoxious are the television ads that are endlessly hawking various pharmaceutical drugs.  If you watch much television, you certainly can’t miss them.  They always show vibrant, smiling, healthy people participating in various outdoor activities on bright, sunny days, and the inference is that if you want to be like those people you should take their drugs.  And the phrase “ask your doctor” is usually near the end of every ad…

The biggest increase in medical marketing over the past 20 years was in “direct-to-consumer” advertising, including the TV commercials that exhort viewers to “ask your doctor” about a particular drug. Spending on such ads jumped from $2.1 billion in 1997 to nearly $10 billion in 2016, according to the study.

As a result of all those ads, millions of Americans rush out to their doctors to ask about drugs that they do not need for diseases that they do not have.

And on January 1st, dozens of pharmaceutical manufacturers hit Americans with another annual round of massive price increases.

But everyone will just keep taking those drugs because that is what the doctors are telling them to do.  But what most people never find out is that the pharmaceutical industry goes to great lengths to get those doctors to do what they want.  According to NBC News, the big drug companies are constantly “showering them with free food, drinks and speaking fees, as well as paying for them to travel to conferences”.

It is a legal form of bribery, and it works.

When you go to most doctors, they will only have two solutions to whatever problem you have – drugs or surgery.

And since nobody really likes to get cut open, and since drugs are usually the far less expensive choice, they are usually the preferred option.

Of course, if doctors get off the path and start trying to get cute by proposing alternative solutions, they can get in big trouble really fast

Today’s medical doctors are not allowed to give nutritional advice, or the American Medical Association will come shut them down, and even if they were, they don’t know the right things to say, because they weren’t educated that way in medical college. So instead, M.D.s just sling experimental, addictive drugs at symptoms of deeper rooted sicknesses, along with immune-system-destroying antibiotics and carcinogenic vaccines.

That’s why any medicine that wrecks your health is easy to come by, just like junk food in vending machines. The money isn’t made off the “vending” products, the money is made off the sick fools who are repeat offenders and keep going back to the well for more poison – it’s called chronic sick care or symptom management. Fact: Prescription drugs are the fourth leading cause of death in America, even when “taken as directed.”

Switching gears, let’s talk about hospitals for a moment.

When you go to the hospital, it is often during a great time of need.  If you are gravely ill or if an accident has happened and you think you might die, you aren’t thinking about how much your medical care is going to cost.  At that moment you just want help, and that is a perfect opportunity for predators to take advantage of you.

Just consider the example of 24-year-old Nina Dang.  She broke her arm while riding her bicycle in San Francisco, and so she went to the emergency room.

The hospital that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg donated so much money to definitely fixed her arm, but later they broke her bank account when they hit her with a $24,000 bill

A bystander saw her fall and called an ambulance. She was semi-lucid for that ride, awake but unable to answer basic questions about where she lived. Paramedics took her to the emergency room at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, where doctors X-rayed her arm and took a CT scan of her brain and spine. She left with her arm in a splint, on pain medication, and with a recommendation to follow up with an orthopedist.

A few months later, Dang got a bill for $24,074.50. Premera Blue Cross, her health insurer, would only cover $3,830.79 of that — an amount that it thought was fair for the services provided. That left Dang with $20,243.71 to pay, which the hospital threatened to send to collections in mid-December.

Most Americans assume that if they have “good health insurance” that they are covered if something major happens.

But as Dang found out, you can still be hit with crippling hospital bills even if you have insurance.

Today, medical debt is the number one reason why Americans declare bankruptcy.  Because of the way our system is set up, most families are just one major illness away from financial ruin.

And this kind of thing is not just happening in California.  The median charge for a visit to the emergency room nationally is well over a thousand dollars, and you can be billed up to 30 dollars for a single pill of aspirin during a hospital stay.

Our health care system is deeply broken, and it has been designed to squeeze as much money out of all of us as it possibly can.

Unfortunately, we are stuck with this system for now.  The health care industry is certainly not going to reform itself, and the gridlock in Washington is going to make a political solution impossible for the foreseeable future.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

A Metaphor For America: 700 Pound Man Plans To Eat And Play Video Games While Naked Until He Dies

34-year-old Casey King is so obese that he can’t work, he has to bathe outside in a trough like a pig, and he has to rely on his father to constantly take care of him.  He now weighs more than 700 pounds, but he just keeps on eating massive amounts of unhealthy food.  Just like America as a whole, he has absolutely no self-discipline and absolutely no desire to turn his life around.  On some level, he understands that he is literally killing himself with his destructive behavior, but he does not have a desire to change.  Instead, he told TLC that he “will just eat until I am dead”

Featuring in a TLC TV series called Family by the Ton, Casey said: “I will just eat until I am dead, probably.

“I wake up around 12, figure out something I’m going to eat immediately [then it’s] TV, video games, bed — it’s not a lot of activity.”

Because of the hot weather in Georgia he prefers to skip clothes, wearing only a headset through which he uses to chat to other gamers playing online.

It is easy to criticize Casey for his lack of activity, but he is really not too different from most other Americans.

As I have written about before, the average American spends approximately five hours a day watching television.  We are willingly plugging ourselves into “the propaganda matrix” for thousands upon thousands of hours, and of course, that is going to greatly affect our outlook on life and how we see the world.

But of course, most Americans don’t watch television and play video games while naked.  But for Casey, clothes have become too restricting and so he just sits on his bed naked all day long

‘It’s hot in Georgia, and all my clothing is restricting and tight, so I just sit there naked, free as can be and no one bothers me — door’s shut, we’re good,’ he explained.

The gaming community has become a safe space for him because it allows him to escape his everyday life.

‘I’m accepted in all those virtual reality worlds and the gaming world I’m in,’ he said. ‘No one sees me. That is my outside. That is my world that I can be the Casey I want to be, but not be judged on my weight.’

The only reason why Casey is able to live this kind of lifestyle is because his father takes care of him and pays all the bills.

And on a much grander scale, isn’t this what our country is turning into?  Young adults are flocking to socialist ideas because they want the nanny state to take care of them from the cradle to the grave and give them everything for free.

At 34 years of age, Casey should be in the prime of his life, but instead, he is utterly dependent on his father as he waits around to die.  He needs a reason to live, and right now he doesn’t have one.  In the end, this is not how he anticipated his life would turn out

‘I never would’ve thought at 34 I’d be living with my father, and I’d have no job, have no real money, and just be playing video games all day and eating,’ he said.

It would be really easy to look down on Casey, but the truth is that our nation is just like him in so many ways.

At this point, we are a nation that completely lacks self-discipline.  Obesity is at an all-time high in the United States, millions of us are addicted to legal and illegal drugs, we have one of the highest rates of alcoholism on the planet, 37 percent of all Americans have eaten fast food within the last 24 hours, and the CDC says that 110 million Americans currently have a sexually-transmitted disease.

But when I first learned about Casey, I didn’t think about any of those things.

Instead, I thought about our exploding mountain of debt.  Like Casey, we just can’t stop ourselves from going back for more.  We have been on the greatest debt binge in the history of the world, but our hunger just keeps growing.

In just a matter of days, the U.S. national debt will hit the 22 trillion dollar mark, but nobody in Washington seems to care.  But if you were to sit down and talk with most of our politicians, they would ultimately admit that all of this debt is an existential threat to our nation.  It is just that they completely lack the willpower to do anything about it.

We know that what we are doing is definitely going to kill us, but we are not willing to change.

Meanwhile, state and local government debt levels are at record highs, public and private pensions are unfunded by trillions upon trillions of dollars, corporate debt has doubled since the last financial crisis, auto loan debt is at an all-time high, credit card debt is absolutely soaring, and student loan debt has roughly tripled over the last decade.

So please don’t be too critical of Casey, because the truth is that he would make a perfect poster boy for what we have become as a nation.

When people point to a modestly good short-term economic number as some sort of “victory”, I just laugh, because the truth is that all of those numbers are fueled by record amounts of debt.

During 2018, we added close to 1.4 trillion dollars to our national debt.  If all of that money was pulled out of the economy and we had only been spending what we had been bringing in, we would be in the worst depression in American history right now.

The only way we can maintain our economic facade is by endlessly gorging ourselves on debt, but in the process, we are literally destroying the bright future that our children and our grandchildren were supposed to have.

In the final analysis, what we are doing to ourselves as a nation makes Casey King look like a sharp, disciplined, athletic young man in comparison.

If we keep doing this to ourselves, we have no future, and nobody can argue with that.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

State Department Issues Travel Advisory As US & China Steamroll Toward Open Conflict

The U.S. State Department has officially issued a level two advisory for travel to China, and U.S. citizens are being warned that they could “be detained” and “subjected to prolonged interrogations and extended detention”.  That sounds extremely ominous, but most Americans typically ignore warnings like this and continue with their normal travel plans anyway.  However, this time around people might want to take heed, because as you will see below westerners are being grabbed and held indefinitely by China right now.  After Huawei Technologies CFO Meng Wanzhou was grabbed while she was changing planes in Canada on December 1st, the Chinese decided that they could play that game too.  So if you are planning to travel to China, the truth is that you could very easily become a pawn in a struggle between the world’s two largest superpowers.

If you have not read the travel advisory yet, you can find it right here.  The following is how it begins…

Exercise increased caution in China due to arbitrary enforcement of local laws as well as special restrictions on dual U.S.-Chinese nationals.

Chinese authorities have asserted broad authority to prohibit U.S. citizens from leaving China by using ‘exit bans,’ sometimes keeping U.S. citizens in China for years. China uses exit bans coercively:

  • to compel U.S. citizens to participate in Chinese government investigations,
  • to lure individuals back to China from abroad, and
  • to aid Chinese authorities in resolving civil disputes in favor of Chinese parties.

In most cases, U.S. citizens only become aware of the exit ban when they attempt to depart China, and there is no method to find out how long the ban may continue. U.S. citizens under exit bans have been harassed and threatened.

U.S. citizens may be detained without access to U.S. consular services or information about their alleged crime. U.S. citizens may be subjected to prolonged interrogations and extended detention for reasons related to “state security.” Security personnel may detain and/or deport U.S. citizens for sending private electronic messages critical of the Chinese government.

If you end up being subject to an “exit ban” while you are in China, that means that you are stuck there until the Chinese government decides that you can go.

And in some cases that never actually happens.

Of course the worst case scenario is that they grab you, interrogate the living daylights out of you, and then you are never seen or heard from again.

Unfortunately, the Chinese feel justified in doing these things to us, because Canadian officials grabbed Huawei Technologies CFO Meng Wanzhou on December 1st as she was switching planes in Canada.  That was done at the request of U.S. authorities, and the Chinese are extremely upset about this.

In the aftermath of that “arrest”, the Chinese grabbed Canadian entrepreneur Michael Spavor and former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig.  And then subsequently, a “third Canadian citizen” was detained

Global Affairs Canada confirmed on Tuesday that a third Canadian citizen has been detained by Chinese authorities, but did not connect the incident to Canada’s high-profile arrest last month of a Chinese tech executive.

A spokesperson with Global Affairs said it was “aware of a Canadian citizen” who has been detained, but did not provide further details, citing the Privacy Act.

Yes, many people continue to travel back and forth normally between North America and China, but in this type of environment why risk it?

Meanwhile, talk of a potential military conflict between the United States and China continues to heat up.  For example, one Chinese naval officer recently suggested that China should sink a couple of U.S. aircraft carriers

Rear Admiral Lou Yuan told an audience in Shenzhen that the simmering dispute over the East and South China Seas could be decisively ended by sinking two US aircraft carriers.

Taiwan’s Central News Agency reported that Admiral Lou gave a long speech on the state of Sino-US relations, where he declared that the trade spat was “definitely not simply friction over economics and trade,” but a “prime strategic issue.” And that if China wants the US to back off, it must be willing to attack US ships when they intrude in Chinese territory.

And the Chinese military is being instructed to get prepared for a “military struggle”.  The following comes from a mainstream British news article entitled “World War 3 WARNING: China orders army to ‘PREPARE for WAR’ in 2019”

China has told the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) that they must be prepared for a “military struggle”. The terrifying message was published in an editorial in the PLA Daily, the Chinese army’s newspaper.

It said: “Drilling soldiers and war preparations are the fundamental jobs and work focus of our military, and at no time should we allow any slack in these areas.

“We should be well prepared for all directions of military struggle and comprehensively improve troops’ combat response in emergencies … to ensure we can meet the challenge and win when there is a situation.”

Unfortunately, the gap between the U.S. military and the Chinese military has significantly narrowed in recent years, and the Chinese continue to develop extremely impressive new weapons systems.

For example, they just tested a brand new submarine launched missile that can deliver nuclear warheads to U.S. cities

CHINA has successfully tested a submarine launched missile which can unleash a nuclear holocaust anywhere in the United States, sources have revealed.

The game-changing Chinese military flight tested the Julong-3 missile that will be deployed with the next generation of ballistic missile submarines which are in the pipeline.

In other words, someday Chinese subs could sneak up to our coastlines and hit us with a huge barrage of nuclear missiles before we even have a chance to respond.

Thankfully it does not appear that a military conflict with China is imminent, but the trade war continues to become more painful, and relations between our two nations are deteriorating at a very rapid pace.  Along with so many other factors, this is one reason why 2019 is going to be such a tough year.  I would encourage everyone to make whatever adjustments are necessary to weather the storm that is ahead.

And please do not travel to China right now unless it is absolutely necessary, and even then you may want to carefully think about it.

Once you get into China, you might not be able to get out, and you could potentially end up as a pawn in an international chess game.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

An Inside Look At The Social Decay That Is Eating Away At America

The character of a nation is a reflection of the character of millions of individual people, and one of the fastest ways to get a sense of the character of individual people is to visit their homes.  It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, and if that is true then a home visit has got to be worth a million.  Sadly, there is a reason why so many Americans that make a living making service calls in other people’s homes absolutely hate their jobs.  Way too often they are confronted with the worst that America has to offer, and many of them end up psychologically scarred for life as a result.  For example, the following is from an article in which Lauren Hough described her time as a cable installer

I’d walk in prepared for anything. There was sobbing, man or woman, didn’t matter. There were the verbal assaults. There were physical threats. To say they were just threats undermines what it feels like to be in someone else’s home, not knowing the territory, where that hallway leads, what’s behind that door, if they have a gun, if they’ll back you into a wall and scream at you. If they’ll stop there. If they’ll call in a complaint no matter what you do. Sure, we were allowed to leave if we felt threatened. We just weren’t always sure we could. In any case, even if we canceled, someone else would always be sent to the same house later. “Irate. Repeat call.” And we’d lose the points we needed to make our numbers.

America wasn’t always like this.

Once upon a time, Americans generally treated one another with kindness, dignity and respect.

But now social decay is spreading like wildfire, and this country is rapidly becoming unrecognizable.

Just recently, a congressional report discovered that one of the largest drug companies in the entire nation had shipped “more than 3 million prescription opioids” to a single pharmacy in West Virginia…

In just 10 months, the sixth-largest company in America shipped more than 3 million prescription opioids — nearly 10,000 pills a day on average — to a single pharmacy in a Southern West Virginia town with only 400 residents, according to a congressional report released Wednesday.

McKesson Corp. supplied “massive quantities” of the painkiller hydrocodone to the now-shuttered Sav-Rite Pharmacy in Kermit, even after an employee at the company’s Ohio drug warehouse flagged the suspect pill orders in 2007, the report found. That year, McKesson — ranked 6th in the Fortune 500 — reviewed its customers, including Sav-Rite, and reported to the Drug Enforcement Administration that the purchases were “reasonable,” according to the report.

Of course West Virginia is right at the heart of the horrific opioid crisis that is sweeping the nation.  But what amazes me is that nobody at McKesson Corp. saw anything wrong with pouring millions of highly addictive pills into a very small pharmacy in a town with only 400 residents.

Out on the west coast, drug addicts are shooting up and smoking crack right in front of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Outside the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in downtown San Francisco, a woman urinates on the sidewalk and smokes a crack pipe.

Inside her purse are about a dozen used heroin needles. She shoots heroin up to 10 times per day, she says.

About 50 yards away, a man injects another woman in the neck with a needle. She puts her thumb in her mouth and blows on it to make her vein more visible. Her right arm is caked with dried blood.

The Ninth Circuit is the country’s largest federal appeals court, and President Trump recently nominated a radical left wing activist to fill a vacancy on it.  And right out in front of the court it literally looks like a third world cesspool.

You may be tempted to think that this is one of the worst neighborhoods in San Francisco, but the truth is that it is actually one of the best

This San Francisco neighborhood is home to the headquarters of Uber, Twitter and Salesforce. But stroll around here, and you’re also likely to find used drug paraphernalia, trash, and human excrement on the sidewalks, and people lying in various states of consciousness.

During 2018, San Francisco citizens filed more than 20,000 complaints about human feces in the streets.  There are words to describe what San Francisco has become, but I am not able to print them in this space.

We like to think that we are an “example” to the rest of the world, but the truth is that they are all laughing at us.  And I had to laugh too when I recently came across this story

A man has been arrested after he drove his pickup truck into a courthouse in Mississippi.

News outlets reported that the Gulfport Police Department said in a news release that 28-year-old Keith Cavalier told officers he intentionally crashed into the Harrison County Courthouse early Saturday because it was the best way to let them know his drug paraphernalia had been stolen.

What in the world is happening to us?

Let’s switch gears for a bit.  Instead of talking about drugs, we’ll talk about sex for a moment.

At one time, if a teacher had sex with a student it was a major national scandal.  But now it is happening so frequently that it is usually not considered to be “newsworthy” anymore.  In fact, during the most recent fiscal year the state of Texas alone “opened 429 cases into inappropriate student-educator relationships”

During fiscal 2017-18, the TEA opened 429 cases into inappropriate student-educator relationships — an approximate 42 percent increase from the prior year, said Doug Phillips, director of educator investigations at TEA, during a Senate Education Committee meeting this week.

“I think we’re just getting a lot more of these reports that maybe would not have been reported in the past,” he said.

But just when you think that nothing could top Texas, Colorado comes along and says “hold my beer”.

After all, nothing says “classy” like a 1,000 person orgy

A POLYAMOROUS events planner has revealed her quest to organize the world’s largest orgy – inviting 1,000 to the marathon sex party.

Pearl Derrier, 29, from Denver, Colorado, goes to orgies at least once a month as one person can’t fulfill her “every physical and emotional need”.

Her partners, boyfriend Dan Patrick, 35, and “homemaker” girlfriend Tomi Tailey, 30, are also happy for her to have casual liaisons with other people at orgies.

The fabric of our society is literally rotting away right in front of our eyes, but most Americans are still in denial about what is happening.

Just like all other major empires throughout human history, we are decaying from within, and we should be deeply alarmed at what we have become.

In his year in review article, Dave Barry made a great point about the current state of American culture

What made this year so awful? We could list many factors, including natural disasters, man-made atrocities, the utter depravity of our national political discourse and the loss of Aretha Franklin. Instead we’ll cite one event that, while minor, epitomizes 2018: the debut of “Dr. Pimple Popper.”

This is a cable-TV reality show featuring high-definition slo-mo closeup videos of a California dermatologist performing seriously disgusting procedures on individuals with zits the size of mature cantaloupes. You might ask, “Who on Earth would voluntarily watch that?” The answer, in 2018, was: MILLIONS OF PEOPLE. That is the state of our culture. We can only imagine what new reality shows lie ahead. We would not rule out “Dr. Butt Wiper,” or “People Blow Their Noses Directly Onto The Camera Lens.”

Sadly, I have a feeling that a show called “Dr. Butt Wiper” would rapidly become one of the most popular television shows in America.

We truly are a nation in decline, and things are getting worse with each passing year.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

44 Numbers From 2018 That Are Almost Too Crazy To Believe

Was 2018 everything that you expected it to be?  Every year contains surprises, but 2018 truly turned out to be a year that we will never forget.  Over the past 12 months, we witnessed great political shaking, Wall Street experienced the worst downturn that we have seen since 2008, the crust of our planet was rattled by an increasing number of major seismic events, social decay spread like wildfire, and America continued to become even more divided as a nation.  In comparison, 2017 was rather bland and boring, and I truly believe that one day we will look back on 2018 as a major turning point.

It is amazing that 12 months has flown by already.  It seems like the years just keep getting faster, and perhaps that is because we are all getting older.

In any event, the following are 44 numbers from 2018 that are almost too crazy to believe…

#1 One study found that the average American spends 86 hours a month on a cell phone.

#2 A different study discovered that 37 percent of all Americans have eaten fast food within the last 24 hours.

#3 90 percent of the beer that Americans drink is produced by just 2 gigantic corporations.

#4 McDonalds feeds approximately 70 million people a day globally.  Pornhub gets more than 78 million visits a day.

#5 60 percent of all Americans actually believe that they have seen a ghost.

#6 The middle class continues to decline, and at this point, half of all American workers make less than $30,533 a year.

#7 During the 2018 midterm elections, Democrats were able to pick up 40 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.  Those that were forecasting a “red tsunami” were completely and totally wrong.

#8 Kevin Spacey’s incredibly creepy YouTube video entitled “Let Me Be Frank” in which he promises that he will never be held accountable for his actions has already been viewed more than 8 million times.

#9 Since 2007, the total amount of student loan debt in America has nearly tripled.

#10 The suicide rate in the United States has risen by 33 percent since 1999.

#11 Suicide is now the second leading cause of death for Americans from age 15 to age 24.

#12 Netflix recently made a deal to renew streaming of “Friends” for another year for 100 million dollars.

#13 According to the United Nations Population Fund, 40 percent of all births in the U.S. now happen outside of marriage. But if you go back to 1970, that figure was sitting at just 10 percent.

#14 13 million households in the United States do not always have enough food to eat.  So if you have enough food to eat every day, you should consider yourself to be very blessed.

#15 According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, almost 1 out of every 4 children in rural areas is currently living in poverty.

#16 At this point, almost 52 percent of all children live in a home that receives monthly help from the federal government.

#17 Over half a million people are homeless in the United States right now.

#18 Today, a million Americans are living in their RVS, and that number is rising with each passing year.

#19 Social decay is clearly evident even in our most prosperous cities.  One recent investigation found 300 piles of human feces on the streets of downtown San Francisco.

#20 62 percent of all U.S. jobs do not pay enough to support a middle class lifestyle.

#21 In 1980, the average American worker’s debt was 1.96 times larger than his or her monthly salary. Today, that number has ballooned to 5.00.

#22 Over half the country now receives more in government transfer payments than they pay in taxes.

#23 According to one recent study, the “rate of people 65 and older filing for bankruptcy is three times what it was in 1991”.

#24 More than 100 churches in the United States are dying every single week.

#25 If you go back to 1986, just 10 percent of all young adults were “religiously unaffiliated”, but now that number has jumped all the way to 39 percent.

#26 According to one recent survey, Americans from the age of 18 to the age of 29 favor Democrats over Republicans by a 66 percent to 32 percent margin.

#27 One study found that one-third of all American teenagers haven’t read a single book in the past year.

#28 The number of married couples with children in the U.S. just reached a 56 year low.

#29 In the city of Baltimore, approximately one out of every four babies is born as an opioid addict.

#30 According to the New York Times, approximately 110 million Americans have a sexually-transmitted disease right now.

#31 It is being projected that the total amount of plastic in the oceans of the world will exceed the total weight of all fish by the year 2050.

#32 90 percent of all seabirds in the world now have plastic in their stomachs.  Back in 1960, that number was sitting at just 5 percent.

#33 In August, we learned that the number of global earthquakes over the last 30 days had risen to a level that was 50 percent above normal.

#34 In September, an all-time record high seven named storms were swirling across the globe simultaneously.

#35 In October, we witnessed the third largest single day point crash in stock market history on the exact same day that the third most powerful hurricane in U.S. history made landfall.

#36 In November, the Camp Fire destroyed 14,000 homes and businesses in northern California.  It was the most destructive wildfire in the history of the state.

#37 According to the official Twitter account of Mount Washington Observatory in New Hampshire, they had wind chills of between -70 and -75 degrees on Thanksgiving morning.

#38 In the aftermath of the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that rattled Anchorage, the state of Alaska was shaken by more than 1,400 earthquakes.

#39 In early December, the largest earthquake in 45 years hit eastern Tennessee.

#40 During the last full week before Christmas, the Dow fell 1,655 points.  That was the worst week for the stock market since the financial crisis of 2008.

#41 The National Retail Federation was projecting that total Christmas spending would surpass $465,000,000,000 in 2018. Only 25 countries on the entire planet have a GDP that is greater than that number.

#42 In 2017, the Dow was either up or down by 1 percent or more just 8 times.  In 2018, it happened 64 times.  Volatility has returned to Wall Street in a major way, and that is a really bad sign.

#43 A recent survey of corporate financial officers discovered that 82 percent of them believe that a recession will have started by the end of 2020.

#44 During 2018, the U.S. national debt increased by nearly 1.4 trillion dollars.  We are now almost 22 trillion dollars in debt, and there is no end to our debt problems on the horizon.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Death Of An Icon: A Day Of Reckoning Has Finally Arrived For One Of America’s Most Important Institutions

After 125 years, it is time to say goodbye.  At one time, Sears was the largest retailer that the world had ever seen by a very wide margin, and it was a shining representation of America’s seemingly endless prosperity.  But now the end has come, and Sears will be liquidated.  Oh sure, things could have been very different if they had been managed better, hadn’t gone into so much debt and had aggressively pursued online shoppers before Amazon became such a big threat.  Back in the late 1990s, Jeff Bezos was running Amazon.com out of his garage in Bellevue, Washington and Sears could have crushed him if they had aggressively moved into Internet commerce at that time.  After all, Sears originally made a name for themselves as America’s first great mail order company.  They should have seen the potential of Internet commerce, but they didn’t, and now the game is over for them.

For years I have been warning my readers that Sears was “going to zero”, and there were some that criticized me for saying that.

But in the end, it turned out to be true.

At one point Sears had accumulated over 10 billion dollars in debt, and it supposedly still has over a billion dollars in assets, but I am quite skeptical of that number.

But even if that number is accurate, that means that most creditors will probably only receive a fraction of what they are owed.

On Thursday, there was still a sliver of hope that a last-minute proposal to save the company could be pulled together

Sears, the 125-year-old icon, has 24 hours to survive.

The employer of more than 68,000 filed for bankruptcy in October. Its last shot at survival is a $4.6 billion proposal put forward by its chairman, Eddie Lampert, to buy the company out of bankruptcy through his hedge fund, ESL Investments. ESL is the only party offering to buy Sears as a whole, people familiar with the situation tell CNBC. Without that bid or another like it, liquidators will break the company up into pieces.

Unfortunately, this time around nobody was stupid enough to pour more money into a lost cause, and Eddie Lampert was not able to obtain the financing that he needed.  So Friday’s deadline passed without any formal bids

Sears, America’s iconic but bankrupt department store chain, passed a critical milestone Friday when a deadline for potential buyers to submit bids on its assets passed.

Before the 4 p.m. ET deadline its former CEO, Eddie Lampert, had proposed buying the struggling retailer in full for $4.6 billion through his hedge fund ESL Investments – including 500 Sears and Kmart stores, store inventory, the Kenmare and DieHard tool brands and other assets. As part of the deal, ESL would also forgive $1.8 billion of debt that the retailer owes the hedge fund.

In the aftermath of this debacle, creditors will fight over the remaining scraps on the carcass, and everyone that worked for Sears will soon be out of a job.

On Friday the company announced the closing of 80 more stores, but as the liquidation proceeds eventually, all of them will be closing.

Once upon a time, Sears operated nearly 4,000 stores, but the end has finally arrived.

Of course, Sears is far from the only major retailer that is in very deep trouble.  Major chains have been closing thousands of locations all over the country, and this includes areas of the nation that have supposedly been prospering economically in recent years.  For example, just check out what has been happening in New York City

According to a new report, Opens a New Window.  for the first time in 11 years, nationally known chains such as Subway, Aerosoles, Au Bon Pain and a slew of others are closing more stores in New York City than they’re opening.

The Center for an Urban Future found that a record 124 retailers have reduced their store footprint over the past year, nearly double the 65 retailers that cut back store locations last year.

They are calling this “the retail apocalypse”, and it looks like this trend is going to accelerate even more in 2019.

Some of us had been warning about the coming demise of Sears for many years, but the process took a while to fully play out.

On a much grander scale, the same thing is true for the nation as a whole.  During 2018, we were able to kick the can down the road a little bit longer by adding nearly 1.4 trillion dollars more to the national debt.  State and local government debt loads are at record levels, corporate debt has doubled since the last financial crisis, and U.S. consumers are more than 13 trillion dollars in debt.  The name of the game is “extend and pretend”, and the only reason why we have been able to enjoy a standard of living that is far, far greater than we have earned is because we have been able to borrow giant mountains of money at super low interest rates.  But now interest rates are starting to climb, and our unsustainable debt levels are becoming increasingly overwhelming.

Just like Sears, it is inevitable that we will experience our own day of reckoning.

But for the moment, life goes on as normal for most Americans.  And even as the final nails were being put into the coffin, members of the Atlanta Sears family gathered for their annual Christmas luncheon

The annual Christmas luncheon was called for noon, but many members of the Atlanta Sears Family had arrived at the church hall by 10:30 a.m.

There was a lot to catch up on: birthdays, illnesses and news of club members who had died over the past few months. There was baked ham, green beans and cherry pie for lunch. There was music — oldies and Christmas carols mostly. One club member, 84-year-old Herman Atwood, danced to “My Girl,” twisting and twirling in his Sears Roebuck sweater vest as if he was at a wedding.

They will always have their memories, but the company that they poured so much of their lives into is now dead.

America is dying too, but most Americans seem completely oblivious to what is happening.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

This Is Exactly The Kind Of Behavior That You Would Expect During A Stock Market Implosion…

If a doctor tells you that his patient’s condition is swinging up and down wildly, is that a good sign or a bad sign?  Of course, the answer to that question is quite obvious.  And if a doctor tells you that his patient’s condition is “stable”, is that a good sign or a bad sign?  Just like in the medical world, instability is not something that is a desirable thing on Wall Street, and right now we are witnessing extreme volatility on an almost daily basis.  On Thursday, the Dow was already down several hundred points when I went out to do some grocery shopping with my wife, and at the low point of the day, it had fallen 611 points.  But then a “miracle happened” and the Dow ended the day with an increase of 260 points.  As I detailed yesterday, this is precisely the sort of behavior that you would expect during a chaotic bear market.

As Fox Business has noted, bear market rallies are typically “sharp, quick and usually short”.  I figured that the momentum from Wednesday would carry over into the early portion of Thursday, so I was surprised when the Dow was down by so much as we neared the middle of the day.  But then around 2 PM we witnessed an extraordinary market surge

The Dow Jones Industrial Average posted a 865-point swing in less than two hours. The blue-chip index had been down in mid-afternoon more than 500 points to cut the previous session’s gains in half, before bargain hunters and short covering turned a big decline into a modest gain.

An 865 point swing in less than two hours is not “normal”.

In fact, it is about as far from “normal” as you can get.

Let’s talk about short covering for a moment.  During huge market downturns, speculators often try to make a lot of money very rapidly by shorting stocks.  But if momentum suddenly shifts, those short sellers can be caught with their pants down and the consequences can be quite dramatic.  The following comes from Marketwatch

Indeed, market veterans warn that massive, one-day rallies are often more characteristic of downturns, occurring as selloffs lead to significantly oversold technical conditions that leave markets ripe for short covering only to give way to renewed selling once the frenzy of forced buying is exhausted. Investors who short a stock are essentially betting that its price will fall by first borrowing the shares, but those traders can be forced to buy shares back if prices suddenly swing higher, which, in turn, can amplify price swings.

In addition, it appears that on Thursday there was more of the “forced pension rebalancing” that Zero Hedge has been talking about

It certainly has the smell of a massive pension reallocation as the moment stocks started to surge, bonds were dumped

No stock market crash in U.S. history has ever gone in a straight line.  There are always huge ups and downs during every market crash, and this market crash is no exception.

Ultimately, there is no way that you can possibly interpret the behavior of the market in recent days as “healthy”

Here’s the problem: as we discussed last night, since 1990, every comparable reversal – with a few exceptions – came during the 2008-2009 bear market.  According to Bloomberg data, in eight previous bear markets the S&P 500 experienced rallies of greater than 2.5% more than 120 times as the benchmark plunged from peak to trough. From the collapse of Lehman to the financial crisis bottom in March 2009, the S&P 500 rallied more than 4 percent on 13 different occasions.

This is not the kind of price action you see in normal bull markets,” said Robert Baird equity sales trader Michael Antonelli. “This is just a face ripping short cover rally. I am 100 percent not saying we are in a situation like 2008 now, but look at October 10, 2008 to October 13, 2008: the market rose nearly 12 percent in one day. October 27 to October 28, 2008, it rose 11 percent.”

Meanwhile, it appears that one of America’s most iconic retailers is about to go down in flames.

For years I have been warning that Sears was eventually “going to zero”, and if a last ditch rescue attempt does not materialize by the end of the day on Friday, Sears will be liquidated

The employer of more than 68,000 filed for bankruptcy in October. Its last shot at survival is a $4.6 billion proposal put forward by its chairman, Eddie Lampert, to buy the company out of bankruptcy through his hedge fund, ESL Investments. ESL is the only party offering to buy Sears as a whole, people familiar with the situation tell CNBC. Without that bid or another like it, liquidators will break the company up into pieces.

But as Lampert stares down a deadline of Dec. 28 to submit his offer, he is quickly running out of time. As of Thursday afternoon, Lampert had neither submitted his bid, nor rounded up financing, the people familiar said.

The inevitable demise of Sears could be seen from a mile away, and the same thing can be said about the country as a whole.

Our debt-fueled standard of living has been propped up by the biggest debt binge in the history of the world, and Wall Street has been transformed into the largest casino on the entire planet.

The entire U.S. economic system has become one huge Ponzi scheme, and all Ponzi schemes ultimately collapse.

Right now, we are in the early stages of a game that is going to take some time to fully play out.  The pessimism that has gripped Wall Street is starting to spread throughout the general population, and many experts were stunned to learn that consumer confidence just declined for a second month in a row

The confidence Americans feel in the economy fell for the second month in a row and touched the lowest level since last summer, perhaps a sign that worries about the 9 1/2-year U.S. expansion have spread from Wall Street to Main Street.

The consumer confidence index dropped to 128.1 this month from a revised 136.4 in November, the Conference Board said Thursday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had forecast a 133.3 reading.

If you have been a regular visitor to my websites, then nothing that will happen over the next few months should be a surprise to you.

The inevitable consequences for decades of exceedingly foolish decisions are starting to roll in, and the bursting of “The Bubble To End All Bubbles” is going to be beyond excruciating.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Food Stamp Money Will Run Out By End Of January If Government Shutdown Lasts That Long

According to the Department of Agriculture, if this government shutdown stretches into February there won’t be money for food stamps.  And it certainly looks like this shutdown could last for quite a while, because President Trump is not backing down on his demand for border wall funding, and the Democrats have pledged not to give him a single penny.  So a few weeks from now, approximately 38 million people could be suddenly cut off from the food stamp program.  If that scenario were to unfold, there is no telling what could happen.  After just a few days, government workers are already freaking out about having their paychecks delayed.  If people are getting this restless already, what will things look like when tens of millions of Americans are suddenly cut off from their primary source of food money?

Even though the government has been shut down, the Department of Agriculture still has some existing financial resources at their disposal, and they are assuring us that those enrolled in the food stamp program will still receive their benefits “for January”.  The following comes from CNN

Eligible households will still receive monthly SNAP benefits for January. But other domestic nutrition assistance programs such as the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, WIC, and the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations will only be operational based on available resources. Additional federal funds and commodities will not be provided during the shutdown.

Child nutrition programs including School Lunch, School Breakfast, Child and Adult Care Feeding, Summer Food Service and Special Milk will continue through February.

The mainstream media is blaming this shutdown entirely on President Trump, and that gives the Democrats a tremendous amount of leverage.  The longer this shutdown lasts, the more painful it will become for ordinary Americans, and once food stamp funds run out the pressure on President Trump to surrender will be immense.

Will Trump be able to keep going once tens of millions of Americans are yelling and screaming about having their food stamp benefits cut off?

For now, the Department of Agriculture will attempt to keep things going for as long as possible “using existing resources”.

But those “existing resources” will not last for very long.

And things are already changing.  At this point, approximately 95 percent of all federal workers involved with the food stamp program have been furloughed…

As the government shutdown drags into its fifth day, nearly all employees in the office overseeing federal food stamps have been cut.

As of Wednesday morning, the remaining staff dwindled down to a mere 5 percent.

We have never seen food stamp benefits cut off nationwide before.  So we actually don’t have any frame of reference for what could happen.

Could we see the type of civil unrest and rioting that I warned about in The Beginning Of The End?  When people are hungry, they get desperate pretty quickly.  And history has shown that when people don’t know where their next meal is going to come from they can get quite violent.

And even without the government shutdown, President Trump was planning to knock millions of people off of the food stamp program anyway by tightening work requirements

If Congress won’t make more food stamp recipients work for their benefits, the Trump administration will.

The US Department of Agriculture unveiled a proposed rule Thursday that would expand work requirements in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, as the food stamp program is formally known. The proposal comes on the same day as President Donald Trump plans to sign a farm bill that had a similar provision that was eventually eliminated.

So one way or another, a lot of people are soon going to lose their benefits.

Meanwhile, federal workers continue to freak out over this government shutdown.  The following comes from a New York Times article entitled “Federal Workers, Some in ‘Panic Mode,’ Share Shutdown Fears on Social Media”

A Department of Transportation worker in Missouri picked up cashier shifts at Barnes & Noble. A paralegal for the Justice Department in Texas stopped using her “gas-guzzling” pickup truck and pulled her motorcycle out of storage. An air traffic controller in California is avoiding any purchases that aren’t vital.

As you can see, the suffering is getting worse with each passing day.

What is next?  Will we soon discover that some government workers have been forced to buy generic brands at the grocery store due to this never-ending horror of a government shutdown?

But seriously, the longer this shutdown lasts, the more that people are going to complain.

And right now Trump does not appear to have any intention of giving in.  When reporters asked him how long he is willing to wait, Trump responded by saying “whatever it takes”

Funding for nine federal departments lapsed Saturday amid an impasse over whether to fund the president’s proposed border wall. As congressional leaders and the White House appear to make little progress toward a deal, the shutdown could last past Jan. 3, when Democrats take control of the House.

Asked Wednesday during a surprise visit to U.S. troops in Iraq how long he would wait to see his demands met, Trump responded: “Whatever it takes.” The comment suggests little willingness on the president’s part to back down as Democrats refuse to approve funds for the proposed barrier.

Of course, Chuck Schumer has drawn a line in the sand and has pledged that he will never, ever allow Trump to have funding for a border wall.

And so we have a political game of chicken playing out right in front of our eyes, and the Democrats have absolutely no incentive to back down because the worse things get the better it will be for them politically.

At this point, it is very easy to imagine a scenario in which this shutdown extends into February, and when food stamp benefits get cut off we could truly see a national temper tantrum unlike anything that we have ever seen before.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

#ShutdownStories: If Federal Workers Are Suffering This Much After 4 Days, How Bad Will It Be When The Government Is Still Closed In February?

Editor’s Note:  Just keep in mind that these are “nonessenctial” employees, which technically means we don’t need them working for us in the first place, and they should be eliminated from the government and go find jobs in the private sector.

After just 4 days, federal workers are flocking to social media to share heart-wrenching stories of the misery and pain that they are suffering through because of the current government shutdown.  As you will see below, it is being claimed that some federal workers were actually forced to return Christmas presents just so that they could afford to pay their mortgages, others are claiming that President Trump “destroyed Christmas”, and the wife of one federal worker says that she is going to have to kill her cat if this shutdown goes much longer.  You couldn’t make this stuff up even if you tried, and it makes one wonder how these people would survive if a real national crisis actually erupted.

The truth is that thousands of federal workers are currently experiencing a paid vacation over the holidays, and ultimately their annual pay won’t be a penny lower than it otherwise would have been.

Other federal workers are currently working without pay, but they will get paid later.  Like the above group, their annual pay will be just the same as if the government never experienced a shutdown at all.

But if you go to social media, you would be tempted to believe that America had just entered the apocalypse.  Here is a sampling of some of the comments under the #ShutdownStories hashtag on Twitter…

On the first day of the shutdown, one federal worker was “obsessively” checking his bank accounts

Day 1 of the : Got my furlough papers. Had brunch with fellow feds. Obsessively checked news and bank accounts. Contemplated a “ Drank  with , ate mom’s Christmas cookies. Fell asleep to 

https://twitter.com/birdchick/status/1077016786183294977

Oh, the humanity!

Instead of working, he was forced to have brunch with friends, eat his mother’s cookies and fall asleep watching television.

How much suffering can one person take?

And if he has multiple “bank accounts”, he must not be hurting too much.

Another deeply troubled federal worker was wondering how she would possibly pay for Christmas if paychecks were delayed for a few weeks

 whenever I talk about my air traffic control husband working without pay on Twitter, all I get is hateful remarks about how he WILL & won’t lose a dime. Um YEAH I KNOW that, but what are we supposed to do about Christmas & bills in the meantime? 

https://twitter.com/psychomamma/status/1076992207704317952

Seriously, has this person ever heard of a “credit card”?

And yet another federal worker went so far as to claim that President Trump had “destroyed Christmas” for hundreds of thousands of federal employees…

Feeling so sad for you – – No not really! You destroyed Christmas for 800 000 employees. No one cares about you. If you are one of those employees, send letters to at least 3 congressmen and 3 senators demanding Trump be impeached!!!  

https://twitter.com/WildBill2300/status/1077082853203238912

When I was working in D.C. a decade ago, I would have loved to have a couple of paid weeks off this time of the year.  So instead of “destroying Christmas”, it could be argued that President Trump just greatly enhanced it for hundreds of thousands of federal workers.

But it is true that there are many families that are living paycheck to paycheck, and apparently, things are so tight for some federal workers that they actually had to return Christmas presents so that they could afford to pay for “rent and food”

 I have family and friends that took back Christmas presents so they can afford rent and food once the paychecks stop. It’s hella expensive to live in the dc area. Everyone I know lives paycheck to paycheck. Missed pay will decimate them.

https://twitter.com/SusanJustSusan/status/1076986663505719296

If this is actually true (and I am skeptical), those people should have never been buying so many Christmas presents in the first place.

As I have stressed repeatedly, living paycheck to paycheck should be avoided whenever possible, because it makes you extremely vulnerable to even the smallest disruption that comes along.  Stuff happens in life, and it is always wise to have some sort of financial cushion.

If you can believe it, one federal worker actually went on Twitter to complain that he was being forced to report to work

Furlough exempt, all leave canceled and must report to work. Will be paid but no idea when if this drags out. If we don’t report we’re placed in furlough for the duration, no guarantee of pay. No, , we didn’t “sign up” for this. 

https://twitter.com/phallock/status/1077210979765751808

Life is tough.  If you don’t like your job, then quit and find another one.  Because of the tremendous benefits they offer, federal jobs are extremely popular, and there will be a very long line of people waiting to fill that position.

Last but certainly not least, the mentally deranged wife of one federal worker actually claimed that she would have to kill her cat if the shutdown goes much longer…

Well, if my husband, who works for the state, doesn’t get paid, we won’t have money to give our elderly cat his insulin shots…so we’d have to put him down!???? 

https://twitter.com/Grampynotgrumpy/status/1077270180856770562

Along with the tweet, this psychotic lady actually posted a photograph of the cat in question.

Remember, the federal government has only been shut down for 4 days, and 2 of those days were Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

So how bad will the whining get if this shutdown extends into February or March?

Because right now there appears to be no solution to this impasse on the horizon.  According to President Trump, the shutdown is never going to end until Congress gives him a border wall

“I can’t tell you when the government is going to reopen,” he said. “I can tell you it’s not going to be open until we have a wall, a fence, whatever they’d like to call it. I’ll call it whatever they want. But it’s all the same thing. It’s a barrier from people pouring into our country.”

On the other side, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is pledging that he will indefinitely block all efforts to get such a bill through the Senate…

“Everyone knew yesterday, long before the House vote, that the President’s wall lacked 60 votes in the Senate. It has proven to lack even 50 votes,” Schumer said on the Senate floor on Saturday.

“It will never pass the Senate—not today, not next week, not next year,” Schumer said.

“So, President Trump, if you want to open the government, you must abandon the wall, plain and simple,” Schumer said.

Unless one of them caves, this shutdown is likely to last for a very, very long time.

Meanwhile, the deep suffering of hundreds of thousands of federal workers will grow progressively worse, and their cats will increasingly be in danger of termination.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

The Worst Christmas Eve For The Stock Market EVER – The Dow Has Now Fallen More Than 5000 Points From The Peak

This is definitely not the gift that investors wanted for Christmas.  On Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 653 points as panic swept through Wall Street like wildfire.  That represented a 2.9 percent daily decline, and that made it the worst Christmas Eve for the Dow ever recorded.  Incredibly, the previous record had lasted for exactly 100 years.  Normally the day before Christmas is a very, very quiet day on Wall Street, but right now there are no “normal” days for the financial markets.  If you go back to early October, the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit an all-time record high of 26,951.81, and on Monday the Dow closed at just 21,792.20.  That means that the Dow has now plummeted more than 5,000 points in less than three months, and that is a major milestone.

The S&P 500 also crossed a major milestone on Monday when it entered bear market territory

The term on Wall Street is synonymous with serious, long-lasting declines in stock markets. In numeric terms, a bear market is a 20 percent or more drop from a recent peak.

The S&P 500 hit that milestone on Monday, dropping 20 percent from its 52-week high. Markets have stumbled through what is usually one of their best months of the year, with indexes on track for their worst December performances since the Great Depression in 1931.

What this means is that the longest bull market in all of U.S. history is officially dead.

And there is still about a week left in the month.  If things continue to unravel, this could ultimately turn out to be the worst December that the stock market has ever experienced.

Now that a bear market has begun, it is likely to stick around for a while.  Just consider these numbers

Since World War II, bear markets on average have fallen 30.4 percent and have lasted 13 months, according to analysis at Goldman Sachs and CNBC. When that milestone has been hit, it took stocks an average of 21.9 months to recover.

Of course all of the “experts” consulted by the mainstream media are going to assume that there will eventually be a recovery.

But could it be possible that this is the beginning of the “big crash” from which we will never recover?

Without a doubt, the elements for a perfect storm have been coming together for a long time.  We are witnessing great political shaking, our relationships with both Russia and China are rapidly deteriorating, a trade war has begun, social decay is spreading through our society like cancer, and the crust of our planet is becoming increasingly unstable.  Now we can add economic and financial instability to the mix, and a scenario is emerging that is eerily similar to what I have been warning about for a very long time.

Even before the markets crashed on Monday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had scheduled an emergency call with the “Plunge Protection Team”.  The following comes from Reuters

The Treasury said Mnuchin will convene a call on Monday with the president’s Working Group on Financial Markets, which includes Washington’s main stewards of the U.S. financial system and is sometimes referred to as the “Plunge Protection Team.”

The group, which was also convened in 2009 during the latter stage of the financial crisis, includes officials from the Federal Reserve as well as the Securities and Exchange Commission.

But instead of calming the markets, many were concerned that this would actually accelerate the panic on Wall Street

“Panic feeds panic, and this looks like panic in the administration,” said Diane Swonk, chief economist at Grant Thornton. “Suggesting you might know something that no one else is worried about creates more unease.”

And without a doubt, what we witnessed on Monday was sheer panic.

Consumer lending has already been tightening up over the past couple of months, and the chaos on Wall Street is almost certainly going to cause financial institutions to become even tighter with their money.

As credit conditions tighten, economic activity will slow down, and that will make the coming recession even more inevitable.

There is one more key data point that I would like to share with you all today.  Since 1960, there have only been 13 years when the stock market has declined for the year.  As Joe Zidle has noted, most of the time those declines occur “before or during a recession”…

“I think there’s a massive gap between sentiment and fundamentals” for the market, Blackstone investment strategist Joe Zidle said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”

“If the market closes down for the year, which looks likely … it will only be the 13th time that we’ve seen a full year decline since 1960,” Zidle said. Of those 13 full year declines in the past 58 years, seven occurred before or during a recession.

Now that the Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen more than 5000 points, I think that we can safely say that this is a stock market crash.

But how bad will this stock market crash ultimately turn out to be?

If the Federal Reserve had rushed in with emergency measures at the first signs of trouble, they probably could have stabilized things.  But the longer they wait, the harder it is going to be to stop the process that has been set in motion.

The Bubble of All Bubbles is starting to burst, and unless we see dramatic central bank intervention soon it is likely that an unprecedented financial nightmare is ahead.

I hope that you are able to rest and relax with family and friends this time of the year because it looks like what is ahead in 2019 is going to be extremely painful.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin Schedules Emergency Call With President’s Working Group On Financial Markets On Christmas Eve

If the financial markets are going to be just fine, then why did Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin make emergency calls to the CEOs of the six biggest banks in America on Sunday?  And if we don’t have anything to worry about, then why has he scheduled an emergency call with the Presidents Working Group on Financial Markets on Christmas Eve?  Actions speak louder than words, and we haven’t seen these sorts of emergency moves since the last financial crisis.  Last week was the worst week for the stock market in 10 years, and it is understandable that they would want to try to do something to ease the panic in the marketplace, but for many, this is just going to confirm that a new financial crisis has now arrived.  The following is from Secretary Mnuchin’s official statement

Washington — Secretary Mnuchin conducted a series of calls today with the CEOs of the nations six largest banks: Brian Moynihan, Bank of America; Michael Corbat, Citi; David Solomon, Goldman Sachs; Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase, James Gorman, Morgan Stanley; Tim Sloan, Wells Fargo. The CEOs confirmed that they have ample liquidity available for lending to consumer, business markets, and all other market operations. He also confirmed that they have not experienced any clearance or margin issues and that the markets continue to function properly.

Tomorrow, the Secretary will convene a call with the President’s Working Group on financial markets, which he chairs. This includes the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission. He has also invited the office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation to participate as well. These key regulators will discuss coordination efforts to assure normal market operations.

Apparently, Mnuchin believes that the fact that he is taking action is going to “reassure” the markets.  One anonymous source told CNN that Secretary Mnuchin is “being pre-emptive”…

“It’s being pre-emptive,” a person familiar with the matter told CNN. “It’s sending the proper message to the market so they can calculate the real picture into their Monday opening. They don’t have to wait until something happens to be reassured.”

But others believe that these moves could almost be akin to yelling “fire” in a crowded theater.  If investors start having flashbacks to similar meetings during the crisis of 2008, that could cause them to panic even more, and that could create even bigger problems on Wall Street.

So far this month, investors have pulled more money out of U.S.-based stock funds than ever before in history.  People are really starting to freak out, and Stephen Suttmeier of Bank of America-Merrill Lynch is warning that this market decline could extend “through the first half of 2019”

Bank of America-Merrill Lynch sees stocks struggling through the first half of 2019.

Stephen Suttmeier, the firm’s chief equity technical strategist, is building his case with two S&P 500 charts. They suggest stocks are in the throes of a bear market and the correction is deepening.

“We are breaking through a massive support on the S&P between that 2,600 and 2,500 range,” he said Thursday on CNBC’s “Futures Now. ” “We could see the mid-2,300s on the S&P 500.”

Personally, I believe that Suttmeier is being way too optimistic.

The U.S. economy is already being strangled by higher interest rates, and the Federal Reserve has indicated that they intend to conduct even more rate hikes in 2019.  President Trump can see what is happening, and he deeply regrets nominating Jerome Powell for the top spot at the Federal Reserve.  Over the weekend, Bloomberg was reporting that Trump had been talking about firing Powell…

President Donald Trump has discussed firing Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell as his frustration with the central bank chief intensified following this week’s interest-rate hike and months of stock-market losses, according to four people familiar with the matter.

Advisers close to Trump aren’t convinced he would move against Powell and are hoping that the president’s latest bout of anger will dissipate over the holidays, the people said on condition of anonymity. Some of Trump’s advisers have warned him that firing Powell would be a disastrous move.

Unfortunately, that isn’t going to happen.

The White House later determined that Trump “does not have the authority” to fire Powell, and so we are all stuck with him…

Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said Sunday that President Trump “now realizes” he can’t fire Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, an acknowledgment that came after reports that Trump has discussed dismissing the Fed chief in recent days amid the stock market’s meltdown.

“I think (Trump) put out a tweet last night specifically saying he now realizes he does not have the authority to fire” Powell, Mulvaney said on ABCs This Week. Mulvaney corrected himself after program host Jonathan Karl pointed out it was Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin who tweeted about Trump’s reversal.

Of course, firing Powell would not ultimately fix much of anything.

The core of the problem is the Federal Reserve system itself.  It is a system that is literally designed to create booms and busts, to systematically debase our currency, and to create as much government debt as possible.  It has been doing a great job at achieving all three of those goals, and if we ever want to reverse course then we need to shut down the Federal Reserve for good.

The Federal Reserve created the boom and bust cycle that resulted in the financial crisis of 2008, and now another boom is turning into a bust right in front of our eyes.

The design of the Federal Reserve system is fundamentally flawed, but this issue isn’t really on anyone’s political radar right now, and that is extremely unfortunate.

Article posted with permission from Michael Snyder