Billionaire: $25M Prize to Solve Global Warming by Geoengineering

October 21, 2015 by  
Filed under General News

source:thenewamerican

Richard Branson (shown), chairman of Virgin Group Ltd., has offered a $25-million prize for the best solution for ending so-called global warming using geoengineering (also called climate engineering), which is the deliberate and large-scale intervention in the Earth’s climatic system.

The goal is to “find true breakthroughs and hopefully create new ways of attacking the climate change problem,” Branson said in an interview.

Sir Richard Branson, who was knighted by Prince Charles in 2000 for his “services to entrepreneurship,” founded such firms as Virgin Atlantic Airways and Virgin Mobile, and with an estimated net worth of $4.9 billion is the seventh-richest citizen of the United Kingdom.

During the United Nations Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in late June 2012, The New American’s foreign correspondent, Alex Newman, asked Branson what he wanted from Rio+20; he called for planetary carbon taxes and global treaties, supposedly to protect the environment. In a press conference after the day’s events, he reiterated his support for such power-grabbing schemes while lobbying against new oil drilling.

What sorts of climatic engineering might scientists propose who are hoping to claim Branson’s prize? A Bloomberg report on this topic quoted David Titley, a professor in Pennsylvania State University’s department of meteorology, who admitted that tinkering with the earth’s climate may carry more risk than efforts to reduce carbon emissions — the “solution” usually proposed by those who assert that climate change is the result of mankind’s activities.

“Climate intervention involves techniques that are of high and unknown risk,” said Titley. “The risks for mitigation and adaptation are understood and manageable.”

The Bloomberg report noted: “Some proposals are uncontroversial, such as using charcoal to lock carbon dioxide into soil or scattering carbon-absorbing gemstones.”

However, other proposals seem quite bizarre, considering how environmentalists usually are so wary of any human activity that impacts our climate. The report continues:

Other ideas to cool the planet have scientists worried about unintended consequences. There are proposals, untested at scale and with uncertain costs, to block the sun’s rays with airborne particles or seed the oceans with carbon-absorbing iron. That they’re even being considered reveals both frustration over government inaction and skepticism that policy alone will solve the problem.

Those who complain of “government inaction” in the face of climate change that is by all likelihood the result of naturally occurring cycles might do well to recall the story of King Canute, who ruled Denmark, Norway, and England almost a thousand years ago.

According to the story (which may be apocryphal), Canute tired of the flattery poured on him by his courtiers and intended to teach them a lesson about the human limitations of kings. According to one account written by Henry of Huntingdon (the author of a history of England, the Historia Anglorum), Canute set his throne by the seashore and commanded the incoming tide to halt and not wet his feet and robes. Yet, wrote Henry, “continuing to rise as usual [the tide] dashed over his feet and legs without respect to his royal person. Then the king leapt backwards, saying: ‘Let all men know how empty and worthless is the power of kings, for there is none worthy of the name, but He whom heaven, earth, and sea obey by eternal laws.’” Canute then hung his gold crown on a crucifix and never wore it again, “to the honor of God the almighty King.”

However, those who insist that governments take action to reduce climate change obviously do not understand that climate has always changed and always will, since such change is a natural phenomenon, as surely as the rising tides that King Canute demonstrated are impossible to stop.

Bloomberg quoted one such individual, Mark Maslin, a fellow at the U.K.’s Royal Geographical Society, who said: “For the last 20 to 30 years, governments, at the back of their minds, have assumed that mitigation is the main way forward. However, asserted Maslin, researchers now realize that the planet needs “other urgent ways of dealing with CO2.”

Those who reject the theory that climate change, usually described as “global warming,” is anthropogenic (caused by human activity) are often branded as “climate deniers,” even though their ranks include many highly qualified and respected scientists in fields such as meteorology. One such individual, Anthony Sadar, a certified consulting meteorologist and the author of In Global Warming We Trust: A Heretic’s Guide to Climate Change, wrote an article for the Washington Times on June 10 about “incessant ad hominem attacks” constantly directed at that those on his side of the debate. He observed:

We witnessed this just recently with Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva’s [D-Ariz.] attack on several prominent atmospheric scientists who dare to defy the authoritarian “consensus” on climate. These veteran scientists include MIT emeritus atmospheric-science professor Richard Lindzen and climatologists John Christy and Roy Spencer.

Sadar noted that Alan Carlin, a retired senior Environmental Protection Agency analyst who had challenged the Obama administration’s faulty climate science, in his new book Environmentalism Gone Mad, wrote that those pushing the “global warming doctrine” have almost always “refused to openly debate the scientific issues raised by skeptics but instead derided them or questioned their motives or sources of funding.”

In that book, noted Sadar, Carlin pointed out that the “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming” hypothesis, which asserts that rising carbon-dioxide concentrations will dramatically increase average global temperatures, “does not satisfy the scientific method” largely because observed reality has not matched predictions. He asks the reader to consider that, aside from the one surface temperature analysis just released in the journal Science, numerous temperature measurements have revealed that the globe has experienced a relative flatlining of temperatures for nearly two decades, despite man’s best efforts “to stay alive and comfortable with carbon-based fuels.”

As we write, the Tenth International Conference on Climate Change is taking place in Washington, D.C. Organized by the Heartland Institute, the conference is sponsored by several conservative organizations including the Heritage Foundation, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and the John Locke Foundation. This year’s theme is “The New Science and Economics of Climate Change.” Among the conference’s keynote speakers are William Harper, professor of Physics at Princeton University, Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), and Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas).

Speaking on June 11, Inhofe told attendees that he agreed with former French President Jacques Chirac’s statement that global warming “is the first component of authentic global governance.”

“The United Nations is the reason that this all came along. We all know that,” Inhofe said.

“They want independence. They don’t want to be accountable to anybody, to the United States or any other country,” the senator continued, explaining that global climate change policies would give the United Nations its own funding source and make it unaccountable to its member countries.

Inhofe also said that the UN’s 1997 Kyoto Protocol is “about leveling the playing field for big business worldwide,” and if bureaucrats control carbon emissions, “you control life.”

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Epilepsy Foundation Calls for Increased Medical Marijuana Access and Research

February 22, 2014 by  
Filed under 420 news

source:epilepsy.com

As parents and as advocates, we feel an urgency to respond and take action on an issue that has been brought to the Epilepsy Foundation from individuals we serve across the country– the use of marijuana to treat epilepsy.  We write this with advice and support from Nathan Fountain, Chairman of our Professional Advisory Board, and with advice and support from a range of other leading epilepsy professionals and board members.

2.3 million Americans live with epilepsy, a neurological condition that includes recurring seizures. More than 1 million of them live with uncontrolled seizures. Some of these people may be helped by surgery or other non-drug treatments, but for many, no answers have been found yet. People with uncontrolled seizures live with the continual risk of serious injuries and loss of life.

The Epilepsy Foundation supports the rights of patients and families living with seizures and epilepsy to access physician directed care, including medical marijuana. Nothing should stand in the way of patients gaining access to potentially life-saving treatment. If a patient and their healthcare professionals feel that the potential benefits of medical marijuana for uncontrolled epilepsy outweigh the risks, then families need to have that legal option now — not in five years or ten years. For people living with severe uncontrolled epilepsy, time is not on their side. This is a very important, difficult, and personal decision that should be made by a patient and family working with their healthcare team.

Treatments for epilepsy with any form of marijuana come with risks, as there is much that is not known about its effects. The consistency of available formulations also needs to be addressed. Caution is appropriate, and we strongly recommend that patients with uncontrolled seizures seek out an epilepsy specialist. However, existing therapies have real side-effects both known and unknown, and, just as there are risks with any treatment, every day without seizure control is a risk to life. Every seizure is a possible opportunity lost to live, learn, and grow.

The Epilepsy Foundation calls for an end to Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) restrictions that limit clinical trials and research into medical marijuana for epilepsy. We applaud recent decisions that have allowed clinical trials of Cannabidiol (CBD) oil, to begin in several states. Certain components of medical marijuana, including CBD, have shown effectiveness in animal studies, and there have been encouraging anecdotal reports from patients. But further research and unbiased clinical trials are needed to establish whether and in what forms medical marijuana is or is not effective and safe. Restrictions on the use of medical marijuana continue to stand in the way of this research.

The Epilepsy Foundation believes that an end to seizures should not be determined by one’s zip code. Our current situation as an epilepsy community is not acceptable. Families looking to access medical marijuana as a treatment are facing terrible decisions. One parent may move across the country to live with a child to seek this treatment. Other families may uproot entirely, including leaving their job, to move where they can access CBD oil. In the past, when therapies not yet approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) were available abroad and left only to those who could afford to travel, we fought for compassionate access. We are here to continue the fight.

The Epilepsy Foundation will be doing the following to support improved access and research into medical marijuana:

  1. Calling on the Drug Enforcement Administration to implement a lesser schedule for marijuana so that it can be more easily accessible for medical research.
  2. Supporting appropriate changes to state laws to increase access to medical marijuana as a treatment option for epilepsy, including pediatric use as supported by a treating physician.
  3. Supporting the inclusion of epilepsy as a condition that uses medical marijuana as a treatment option where it is currently available.
  4. Supporting research on multiple forms of cannabis and seizures.

What can you do to help? Advocate for increased access and for the freedom to conduct medical research on a potentially effective treatment against seizures and epilepsy. Join with us at http://capwiz.com/efa/mlm/signup.

Here’s Our Story:

As the President & CEO and as the Chair of the Board of the Epilepsy Foundation, we are privileged to lead a nationwide network of caring volunteers and staff who work tirelessly to improve lives of individuals living with epilepsy.
We are also fathers of individuals living with epilepsy.  Phil’s son has had thousands of seizures in his life and has endured two brain surgeries to stop his seizures. Warren’s daughter has a genetic form of epilepsy that is marked by severe seizures and, despite an implanted medical device and three different epilepsy medicines, endures daily waves of seizures.
Some individuals, specifically families of children with uncontrolled seizures, are using what is called cannabidiol oil, or CBD oil, and anecdotally a few are seeing remarkable results.  This is truly spectacular — anytime someone finds a treatment that stops seizures, there is cause for celebration because seizure freedom for one person means hope of seizure freedom for others.
There is still a lot we don’t know about the medical use of marijuana for epilepsy.  Until clinical trials are completed, doctors and patients will not know whether medical marijuana or CBD will on balance harm someone or help someone with epilepsy.  We are advocating for the rights of patients and families to determine with their doctor if this is an appropriate therapy for them, but we recognize the unknowns and the difficulty of this decision for an individual patient.
There is an obvious and urgent need for research. The Epilepsy Foundation is proud that we are currently funding an important research study to learn more about the effect of a form of cannabis on individuals living with uncontrolled epilepsy.
As fathers, we know the pain of watching our children experience uncontrolled seizures.
We know how epilepsy impacts development in children for whom no available current treatment has been successful.
We know about the dangers that can occur when families are forced to leave medical systems and physicians they know to move to other states.
We know seizures not only affect the individual enduring seizures, it also impacts siblings, parents, grandparents, kids and grandchildren, other loved ones and friends.
We know the difference between having recurring seizures and not having seizures can mean the difference between life and death.
Warren’s daughter is fortunate to be enrolled in a clinical trial of CBD. We do not know if this will help Sylvie but know the cost of her unrelenting seizures. Weighing the issue with her doctor, we decided the potential benefits outweigh the risks. Other parents and other individuals living with potentially devastating seizures should have the same opportunity to make that determination.
If an epilepsy patient and their doctor feel that marijuana is their best treatment option then they need to have safe, legal access to medical marijuana and they need that access now.

Commentary Medical Marijuana: We Need Proof and Compassion Orrin Devinsky, M.D., Professor of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, Director, NYU Comprehensive Epilepsy Center Member of Epilepsy Foundation National Board of Directors

There is an enormous unmet need for better treatments for children and adults with epilepsy.  Approximately one-third of people with epilepsy continue to suffer from seizures despite the best medical, dietary, and surgical therapies.  For those with treatment-resistant epilepsy, the enormous toll includes the direct and potentially deadly consequences of the seizures, which are compounded by the disabling physical, cognitive and behavioral side effects from high doses of multiple antiepileptic drugs.  Despite advances in epilepsy therapy over the past decades, our progress remains painfully slow and disappointing.  Medical care and research fails many patients.  The statement by Phil Gattone and Warren Lammert of the Epilepsy Foundation strongly advocates that there should be legal access for all epilepsy patients and their doctors who feel that marijuana is their best treatment option.  I agree.

In a recent Op-Ed piece in the New York Times, my colleague Daniel Friedman and I emphasized 1) the need for randomized controlled trials, considered the gold standard for clinical trials, to better understand the safety and effectiveness of any drug or combination  of drugs – whether derived from a marijuana plant or synthesized in a lab, 2) the need for changes in how the Drug Enforcement Agency classifies marijuana and its constituents as Schedule 1 drugs.  This is much too restrictive based on the scientific data,  especially for cannabidiol (CBD) – the major non-psychoactive component of marijuana, and 3) while we await scientific studies, that marijuana products be made available to pediatric and adult patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy.

Charlotte Figi, who has brought this story to the forefront, suffers from Dravet Syndrome, a genetic disorder that often causes severe epilepsy.  Medical marijuana, high in CBD and low in THC, has been reported to cause a dramatic reduction in her seizures and eliminate her need for seizure medications.  Caring for epilepsy patients for 25 years, I have seen firsthand the devastation that uncontrolled epilepsy can bring.  In the last 2 years, two of my patients with Dravet Syndrome died from sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP).

Data from animal studies showing CBD and THC can stop seizures, stories like Charlotte’s, and the tremendous unmet need led me to organize the first international symposium on cannabidiol for epilepsy at NYU in October 2013, to provide testimony for compassionate use for marijuana to several state legislatures, and to work as a researcher (without consulting fees or salary support) to assess CBD as an epilepsy therapy.  For our initial study for 25 pediatric and young adult patients, we have received inquiries from more than 500 families and patients.

We stand at an unusual inflection point where families are demanding access to a medication that may or may not be beneficial, and for which the side effects may be less than many medications prescribed by doctors; the medical community lacks convincing efficacy or safety data for children with epilepsy; and the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overly conservative scheduling of marijuana hamstrings research and access.  Yet there should be caution for both expectations and potential side effects. Humility is essential in  trying to understand something for which we lack solid evidence.  Both doctors and patients are equally biased and the greater the expectation, the greater the potential for bias.  We urgently need data from randomized controlled trials where the biases of companies, doctors, patients, and parents are meticulously removed.

We need to make a balanced decision about compassionate use.  If I were Charlotte Figi’s parents and lived in Colorado I would have done exactly what they did. And as a doctor, I would gladly prescribe marijuana products for many of my patients who failed existing therapies if it were legal in my state. Trying marijuana or related compounds should be regarded like any other experimental treatment – a shared decision between patient/parent and doctor, that takes into account the severity of disease, risk and benefits  of treatment, and existence of alternate treatment options, all guided by the principle of “first do no harm”. Until we have the scientific data, we should make medical marijuana available to physicians who care for people with treatment-resistant epilepsy and their patients.

###

About Epilepsy When a person has two or more unprovoked seizures, they have epilepsy, which affects more than 2 million people in the United States and 65 million people worldwide.  This year, another 150,000 people in our country will be diagnosed with epilepsy.  Despite all available treatments, four out of 10 people with epilepsy continue to experience uncontrolled seizures while many more experience less than optimal seizure control.

About the Epilepsy Foundation The Epilepsy Foundation, a national non-profit with 47 affiliated organizations throughout the United States, has led the fight against seizures since 1968.  The Foundation is an unwavering ally for individuals and families impacted by epilepsy and seizures.  The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is to stop seizures and sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP), find a cure and overcome the challenges created by epilepsy through efforts including education, advocacy and research to accelerate ideas into therapies.  The Foundation works to ensure that people with seizures have the opportunity to live their lives to their fullest potential. For additional information, please visit www.epilepsy.com.

“Like” the Epilepsy Foundation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

MEDIA CONTACT:   Kenneth Lowenberg Vice President of Communications and Digital Strategy 301-918-3773 klowenberg@efa.org

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Avoiding US govt shutdown means bigger debt fight

September 27, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

Avoiding US govt shutdown means bigger debt fight (via AFP)

With five days until a possible US government shutdown, lawmakers were to mull options Thursday for keeping agencies open while potentially postponing a battle over President Barack Obama’s health care law. The Senate expected to approve a stopgap funding…

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The Bank Of International Settlements Warns The Monetary Kool-Aid Party Is Over

June 23, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:zerohedge

When a month ago the Central Banks’ Central Bank, aka the Bank of International Settlements (or BIS) in Basel where the MIT central-planning braintrust meets every few months to decide the fate of the world, warned that the Fed-induced collateral shortage is distorting the markets, few paid attention. That the implication behind said warning was that QE can not continue at the current pace, was just as lost. A few short weeks later following the biggest plunge in markets since 2011 in the aftermath of Bernanke’s taper tantrum, some are finally willing to listen.

However, they will certainly not like what the BIS just released as a follow up, both in the form of the BIS’ 83rd Annual Report, and the speech by Jaime Caruana to commemorate said annual meeting. For the simple reason that it reads like a run of the mill Sunday morning Zero Hedge sermon, which says, almost verbatim, that the days of kicking the can via flawed monetary policy are now over, and that the time for central banks to end the monetary morphine drip has finally come.

The BIS message, as summarized by the FT, is that “central banks must head for the exit and stop trying to spur a global economic recovery… cheap and plentiful central bank money had merely bought time, warning that more bond buying would retard the global economy’s return to health by delaying adjustments to governments’ and households’ balance sheets.”

Here is a better summary of the BIS’ unprecedented U-Turn on its 5 year long monetary strategy, in its own selected words:

Can central banks now really do “whatever it takes”? As each day goes by, it seems less and less likely… Six years have passed since the eruption of the global financial crisis, yet robust, self-sustaining, well balanced growth still eludes the global economy. If there were an easy path to that goal, we would have found it by now. Monetary stimulus alone cannot provide the answer because the roots of the problem are not monetary. Hence, central banks must manage a return to their stabilisation role, allowing others to do the hard but essential work of adjustment. Many large corporations are using cheap bond funding to lengthen the duration of their liabilities instead of investing in new production capacity. Overindebtedness is one of the major barriers on the path to growth after a financial crisis. Borrowing more year after year is not the curein some places it may be difficult to avoid an overall reduction in accommodation because some policies have clearly hit their limits.

Of course, it would have been more useful for the BIS to reach this commonsensical conclusion some four years ago (or roughly when we started preaching to the choir, which now includes the BIS itself), instead of allowing the global private bank controlled syndicate known as “central banks” to inject $10 trillion into global capital markets in the past 4 years, and $16 trillion (a 500% increase!) since 2000.

Some of the “shocking” and painfully late observations on the chart above:

Since the beginning of the financial crisis almost six years ago, central banks and fiscal authorities have supported the global economy with unprecedented measures. Policy rates have been kept near zero in the largest advanced economies. Central bank balance sheets have doubled from $10 trillion to more than $20 trillion. And fiscal authorities almost everywhere have been piling up debt, which has risen by $23 trillion since 2007. In emerging market economies, public debt has grown more slowly than GDP; but in advanced economies, it has grown much faster, so that it now exceeds one year’s GDP.

Some of the other, just as “shocking” observations: a dramatic surge in artificially low bond yields will result in crippling, systemic losses, amounting to trillions of dollars for bond (and certainly stock) investors around the globe, to the tune of 8% of GDP losses in the US, and a mindblowing 35% of GDP in losses for Japanese investors:

Consider what would happen to holders of US Treasury securities (excluding the Federal Reserve) if yields were to rise by 3 percentage points across the maturity spectrum: they would lose more than $1 trillion, or almost 8% of US GDP (Graph I.3, right-hand panel). The losses for holders of debt issued by France, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom would range from about 15 to 35% of GDP of the respective countries. Yields are not likely to jump by 300 basis points overnight; but the experience from 1994, when long-term bond yields in a number of advanced economies rose by around 200 basis points in the course of a year, shows that a big upward move can happen relatively fast.

 

And while sophisticated hedging strategies can protect individual investors, someone must ultimately hold the interest rate risk. Indeed, the potential loss in relation to GDP is at a record high in most advanced economies. As foreign and domestic banks would be among those experiencing the losses, interest rate increases pose risks to the stability of the financial system if not executed with great care.

 

All of which Japan’s “sophisticated”, yet joyously cartoonish, “leaders” recently found out when they almost lost all control of the bond (and stock) market.

What’s the “wealth effect” solution: why buy stocks but don’t sell bonds. Or if selling bonds, do so vewy, vewy quietly. Alas, not even the BIS is dumb enough to fall for this (or push) possibility any longer.

The BIS report goes on, doing all it can to distance itself from those central banks who merely implemented policy that the BIS supported (and encouraged) for the past 5 years, but which has suddenly turned a cold shoulder. It does so by dramatically and rhetorically blasting a litany of questions to which it fully-well knows the answers:

How can central banks encourage those responsible for structural adjustment to implement reforms? How can they avoid making the economy too dependent on monetary stimulus? When is the right time for them to pull back from their expansionary policies? And in pulling back, how can they avoid sparking a sharp rise in bond yields? It is time for monetary policy to begin answering these questions.

Regardless of the politics behind the shift in BIS sentiment, the days of Mario Draghi’s “whatever it takes” shriek of desperation are over. Here are some more of the key soundbites from the BIS report:

Originally forged as a description of central bank actions to prevent financial collapse, the phrase “whatever it takes” has become a rallying cry for central banks to continue their extraordinary actions. But we are past the height of the crisis, and the goal of policy has changed – to return still-sluggish economies to strong and sustainable growth. Can central banks now really do “whatever it takes” to achieve that goal? As each day goes by, it seems less and less likely. Central banks cannot repair the balance sheets of households and financial institutions. Central banks cannot ensure the sustainability of fiscal finances. And, most of all, central banks cannot enact the structural economic and financial reforms needed to return economies to the real growth paths authorities and their publics both want and expect.

 

What central bank accommodation has done during the recovery is to borrow time – time for balance sheet repair, time for fiscal consolidation, and time for reforms to restore productivity growth. But the time has not been well used, as continued low interest rates and unconventional policies have made it easy for the private sector to postpone deleveraging, easy for the government to finance deficits, and easy for the authorities to delay needed reforms in the real economy and in the financial system. After all, cheap money makes it easier to borrow than to save, easier to spend than to tax, easier to remain the same than to change.

 

Yes, in some countries the household sector has made headway with the gruelling task of deleveraging. Some financial institutions are better capitalised. Some fiscal authorities have begun painful but essential consolidation. And yes, much of the difficult work of financial reform has been completed. But overall, progress has been slow, halting and uneven across countries. Households and firms continue to hope that if they wait, asset values and revenues will rise and their balance sheets improve. Governments hope that if they wait, the economy will grow, driving down the ratio of debt to GDP. And politicians hope that if they wait, incomes and profits will start to grow again, making the reform of labour and product markets less urgent. But waiting will not make things any easier, particularly as public support and patience erode.

 

Alas, central banks cannot do more without compounding the risks they have already created. Instead, they must re-emphasise their traditional focus – albeit expanded to include financial stability – and thereby encourage needed adjustments rather than retard them with near-zero interest rates and purchases of ever larger quantities of government securities. And they must urge authorities to speed up reforms in labour and product markets, reforms that will enhance productivity and encourage employment growth rather than provide the false comfort that it will be easier later.

* * *

As governments responded to the financial crisis with bank bailouts and fiscal stimulus, their indebtedness rose to new highs. And in countries that experienced a housing bubble in the run-up to the crisis, households had already accumulated large debts. In the half-decade since the peak of the crisis, the hope was that significant progress would be made in the necessary deleveraging process, thereby enabling a self-sustaining recovery.

However, that never happened.

Easy financial conditions can do only so much to revitalise long-term growth when balance sheets are impaired and resources are misallocated on a large scale. In many advanced economies, household debt remains very high, as does non-financial corporate debt. With households and firms focused on reducing their debt, a low price for new credit is not terribly relevant for spending. Indeed, many large corporations are using cheap bond funding to lengthen the duration of their liabilities instead of investing in new production capacity. It does not matter how attractive the authorities make it to lend and borrow – households and firms focused on balance sheet repair will not add to their debt, nor should they.

And, most of all, more stimulus cannot revive productivity growth or remove the impediments that block a worker from shifting into a promising sector. Debt-financed growth masked the downward trend in labour productivity and the large-scale distortion of resource allocation in many economies. Adding more debt will not strengthen the financial sector nor will it reallocate resources needed to return economies to the real growth that authorities and the public both want and expect.

* * *

Six years have passed since the eruption of the global financial crisis, yet robust, self-sustaining, well balanced growth still eludes the global economy. If there were an easy path to that goal, we would have found it by now. Monetary stimulus alone cannot provide the answer because the roots of the problem are not monetary. Hence, central banks must manage a return to their stabilisation role, allowing others to do the hard but essential work of adjustment.

 

Authorities need to hasten labour and product market reforms so that economic resources can shift more easily to high-productivity sectors. Households and firms have to complete the difficult job of repairing their balance sheets, and governments must intensify their efforts to ensure the sustainability of their finances. Regulators have to adapt the rules to a financial system that is becoming increasingly interconnected and complex and ensure that banks have sufficient capital and liquidity buffers to match the associated risks. Each country needs to tailor the reform agenda to maximise its chances of success without endangering the ongoing economic recovery. But, in the end, only a forceful programme of repair and reform will return economies to strong and sustainable real growth.

* * *

Ultimately, outsize public debt reduces sovereign creditworthiness and erodes confidence. By putting their fiscal house in order, governments can help restore the virtuous cycle between the financial system and the real economy. And, with low levels of debt, governments will again have the capacity to respond when the next financial or economic crisis inevitably hits.

The BIS conclusion:

Is this a call for undifferentiated, simultaneous and comprehensive tightening of all policies? The short answer is no. Concrete measures need to be tailored to country-specific circumstances and needs. And the timing need not be simultaneous, although in some places it may be difficult to avoid an overall reduction in accommodation because some policies have clearly hit their limits.

Ours is a call for acting responsibly now to strengthen growth and avoid even costlier adjustment down the road. And it is a call for recognising that returning to stability and prosperity is a shared responsibility. Monetary policy has done its part. Recovery now calls for a different policy mix – with more emphasis on strengthening economic flexibility and dynamism and stabilising public finances.

Finally, today’s large flows of goods, services and capital across borders make economic and financial stability a shared international responsibility. Cross-border effects of domestic policy action are intrinsic to globalisation. Understanding spillovers and finding ways to avoid the unintended effects is central to the work of the BIS. And continued discussions among central banks and supervisors – discussions that the BIS facilitates and promotes – are essential for avoiding national biases in policymaking. Such national bias runs the risk of undermining globalisation and thus blocking the road to sustained growth for the global economy.

And yes, the central banks’ central bank really did say all of the above. Unpossible the Keynesian Magic Money Tree growers will say: surely there is an error in the BIS excel model…

Those pressed for time, if unable to read the full 204 page annual report, should at least read the following stunning speech from Jaime Caruana, General Manager of the BIS, titled “Making the most of borrowed time.” (only 9 pages – pdf here). Because, if nothing else, it validates everything Zero Hedge has said for the past 4 years.

 

Ax hovers over food stamp program as costs grow

May 19, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:nbc

By Andrew Rafferty, Staff Writer, NBC News

A heated battle is brewing on Capitol Hill over cuts to the food stamp program, with lawmakers quoting Bible verses at each other and benefits for millions of people hanging in the balance.

Nearly 47 million people – one in seven Americans – rely on food stamps for some of all of their daily sustenance, according to the Department of Agriculture, a number that has grown nearly 70 percent since the financial collapse of 2008.

The increased enrollment has caused costs to soar from $35 billion in 2007 to $80 billion last year, and now lawmakers in both the House and the Senate are targeting program for cuts even as advocates cry foul.

Legislation making its way through Congress would eliminate billions of dollars in funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as food stamps. Last week, a Senate committee approved striking $4.1 billion from the program over 10 years and a House committee backed cuts five times as large.

Those actions set the stage for a congressional showdown not only over how much to slash the program, but also over the role of government in fighting hunger and poverty.

During contentious debate over the Farm Bill, which funds food stamps, in the House Agriculture Committee, Rep. Juan Vargas, D-Calif., invoked the Book of Matthew as he noted his opposition to the cuts.

“[Jesus] says how you treat the least among us, the least of our brothers, that’s how you treat him,” Vargas, adding that Jesus specifically mentions the importance of feeding the hungry.

Republican Congressman Stephen Fincher of Tennessee, who supports cuts to the program, had his own Bible verse from the Book of Thessalonians to quote back to Vargas: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat,” he said.

The left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities estimates that the House version of the farm bill making would throw nearly 2 million people off food stamps, most of whom are working families with children or senior citizens. More than 200,000 kids would lose access to free school lunches, according to the group.

The more modest Senate proposal would cost half a million SNAP recipients $90 each month, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. For a family of four, the current maximum monthly allotment is $668; recipients get less as their income rises. The cuts come on top of the looming expiration of a temporary funding boost the program received in 2009 as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that will also slash recipient benefits.

“It is impossible to impose these types of cuts to SNAP without having the most vulnerable in our society suffer,” said Stacy Dean, vice president for food assistance policy for the center.

Most households that get food stamps include either a child, a person over 60 or someone who is disabled, according to federal data. And all are either poor or low-income:  To be eligible for food assistance, income must not exceed 130 percent of the federal poverty line — roughly $30,000 annually for a family of four.

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Hidden Tor website encourages uploading child porn through people’s personal Wifi Routers, setting them up

May 9, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

screenshot01_REDACTED

Screenshot 01 from the Undercover Unit Investigator of the Wireless Trolling website. Image is resized so click the image to access the full size image.

Author: Ben Franklin

Subject: Porngate Scandal

Source: FederalJack

Related Articles: Any Whistleblowers whom wish to expose Porngate, I ask you to come forth and tell us, ALERT!!!: New virus that may be planting child porn to set up people as pedophiles

Evidence Download Links: Undercover Unit Investigator; Document 1 REDACTED for legal compliance – Document 2 REDACTED for legal compliance – Screenshot 1Screenshot 2Screenshot 3; Informant; ICAC task force documents and report in .zip fileUM-CS-2012-016.pdf (5.2 MB) (Available on public web)

Note: We still encourage people to leak any government documents and blow the whistle on any activity where the government or law enforcement is planting child pornography on innocent people’s computers including political activists. Continue to send your emails to pornleakz@hushmail.com. The more you send us the more we can expose the rotten activity in the government which has led to a lot of innocent people being convicted as child sex offenders for child porn distribution and possession. We must end this nasty trend of government ruining good people’s lives. More innocent lives are now on the line awaiting criminal charges to be filed. Now is the time to stand up and fight back against the child porn set-ups.

The evidence has finally arrived that further peels the onion of corruption and wickedness. A hidden Tor website which has recently popped up, according to anonymous sources over the Torchat system and with information leaked by a undercover unit investigator(Don’t know if he is really government or not, but he does hint that he is) that encourages people to upload child pornography on public non-encrypted chan websites through open Wifi routers which the police will record is the wireless routing hubs IP Address and not the real offender or offenders. It is unclear whether the new website was created by s0meone or a group of people in the government or corporate elite networks. However these leaks do confirm that people can be set-up with child pornography and that the Internet Crimes Against Children(ICAC) gets a sustainable or even more Federal or State funding for the amount of arrests and prosecutions the police make in regards to chyild porn investigations.

Around five days ago, I released an article asking for whitlsblowers and inside government employees including Pentagon employees to leak any credible information proving that the US government, state, and local governments and law enforcement may be setting up innocent people with child pornography for both political reasons and to pad their stats to make it look like they are fighting pedophilia to the death when they are turning innocent people into child porn sex criminals.

Also we decided to excerpt the text given by the investigator so you can see what exactly he told me:

I like to leak a few files to you of documents and screenshots of a Tor
hosted hidden website that is encouraging innocent Wifi users to be set up
with child pornography.

They are all encouraging using open Wifi routers, and some will likely
attempt to crack password protected ones as well, to upload child
pornography to public openweb chan sites which will give the Wifi user’s
IP Address as the uploaders.

The police will investigate and start raiding hundreds to thousands or
even tens of thousands of people monthly with this new pedophile campaign.
This website also has mirrors which also work fast. I suspect they are
government operated entrapment websites to set up more innocent people
with child pornography. I am doing the best in my unit to investigate this
website and trying to find out who is operating this. Once I find out I
will attempt to send you the case information to your email so you can
leak this to the general public. I think this is terrible for the police
to do such things but it sounds like darker elements of the government are
the ones planting child porn. I do work in some field in the government
but that is all I can tell you. Anymore and they will claim I have child
porn then indict me before I can blow the whistle. Once I get enough this
will be sent to Wikileaks and other major whistleblowing sites.

Signed,
Undercover Investigator and Whistleblower

According to the information posted by this investigator, I read it over and found some interesting stuff so I am uploading the leaked documents then posted right in this article before it is made public. I also made sure to redact the links so that the feds don’t come after me claiming that I linked to any illegal material. Nevertheless these documents show a real website hosted on the Tor hidden services network encouraging pedophiles to upload child pornography to public websites hosted on the World Wide Web through people’s private Wifi routers across the country.

The website has been named and dubbed the “Wireless Trolling” Tor website. According to the other screenshot it appears that the links may be child porn caches to which the website encourages uploading through public wireless routers.

Screenshot 02 from the Undercover Unit Investigator of the Wireless Trolling website. Image is resized so click the image to access the full size image.

Screenshot 02 from the Undercover Unit Investigator of the Wireless Trolling website. Image is resized so click the image to access the full size image.

It states that “1) Upload the most fappable pictures from here over Public Wifi to ClearWeb Chan sites“, “2) Sit back and watch, then repeat step 1”, and last but not least that “Most Wireless on Earth are not banned, yet! Most wireless are DHCP!”

screenshot03

Screenshot 03 from the Undercover Unit Investigator of the Wireless Trolling website. Image is resized so click the image to access the full size image.

It states that “Move from wireless to wireless for each Chan site until b&”, “Neighbor you do not like has unsecured wireless?”, and “…guess they will be posting on Chan sites and Forums.”

The one document leaked just affirms the screenshots credibility and the other also has a message as to why innocent people’s IP Addresses should get the mblame for child porn being posted to chan sites and forums.

Wireless Trolling :::: Butt Why?

Keep rookie cops busy
Keep moderators busy
Encourage more parents to create OC
Piss off white knights
Really piss off white knights
Help more pedos discover what they like

MILLIONS of unsecured open wireless IP addresses not yet banned!

Share with non Tor users? Sure!

Sounds like something a Anonymous hacker group wannabe would say, No?

Sounds like this pedophile website is planning a child porn uploading war on the open internet. With tactics like this who could bet a million dollars that this could be a website run by the Feds. If so then isn’t this going a bit too far having millions of unsecured wireless IP Addresses flagged by the Internet Crimes Against Children(ICAC) task force and the Immigrations Custom Enforcement(ICE). Which brings us to the next item on our hunt for the truth to discover if the government is really wanting to child pornography on innocent people’s computers and what the motives would be that are cited to justify it.

An email was sent to me by someone we are keeping anonymous but have decided to excerpt the email in quotes below:

I can’t provide real evidence like you’re asking for but I can provide some information. I’ve attached info on the ICAC program including what Standards they are required to follow plus the relevant US Code sections. The way the program is set up agencies get rewarded with continued or increased funding if they increase the number of arrests and prosecutions. I’ve also attached a report detailing how they monitor file trading.

So it has been revealed that the way the ICAC program was set up, according to the Congressional record and possibly also contributed by the states, that the ICAC regional task forces across the country get continued funding or increased funding if they can increase the number of arrests and prosecutions of suspected child pornographers. Of course the police will argue that the increase funding can act as some kind of reward to get the police to work harder to catch as many of the child pornographers and pedophiles as they are able to under the law. However just like with arrest quotas, police plant drugs and misapply laws to people in order to make more arrests and convictions in order to help the police departments get more funding. Basically the police have to arrest a certain amount of individuals at a given time to have sustainable funding or even increased funding which is more money to the Prison Industrial Complex and law enforcement employees across the board from agencies to local municipal police departments. Just like how providing more funding to law enforcement can help fight crime, it can also be used as a tool of corruption and profits and here is how it works. Both the private and public prison contractors all require one thing, Money $$$, money is needed by both the government and private sector. What do prisons need to survive and make a lot of money, they need as many prisoners as these prisons can hold. So if innocent people is convicted and set-up with child pornography then it makes it look like the ICAC task force is successful in spearheading the pedophiles and getting rid of the pedophiles by imprisoning all of them. When many go to use anonymity tools including Tor, it gets more increasingly difficult to convict these child porn distributors so if they can’t catch the ones behind the anonymity shield, which would make them look like a failure, so if they decide to uses viruses such as the eMule virus and use other methods to plant child porn on people’s computers then this would pave the way to make the ICAC look successful in cracking down on pedophile related activities. So if the ICAC and ICE Operation Flicker may have any direct compartmentalized style involvement with the planting of child pornography images on people’s computers then this would help boost their funding and staffing for these operations. Thus more money is needed by the government in the form of taxes to have more people convicted and then thrown into prison. If the Wireless trolling website is not shut down within more then 1 month, then it is clear that the FBI, ICAC, DOJ, ICE, DHS, and other government agencies don’t intend to stop child pornography but to allow it or even help it to be spread all over the internet, exposing both children and adults to finding these child porn files, and thus more arrests and child porn convictions can thus be made to get more funding secured for the ICAC and ICE.

The more leaks and public information we receive on these government agencies claiming to fight child porn, the more we can begin to peel away the onion of despotic tyrannical corruption in the system which tares apart what made America such a great nation.