Monday, October 24, 2011

We can only pray this is true.....

World power swings back to America

The American phoenix is slowly rising again. Within five years or so, the US will be well on its way to self-sufficiency in fuel and energy. Manufacturing will have closed the labour gap with China in a clutch of key industries. The current account might even be in surplus.

5:53PM BST 23 Oct 2011

Assumptions that the Great Republic must inevitably spiral into economic and strategic decline - so like the chatter of the late 1980s, when Japan was in vogue - will seem wildly off the mark by then.

The author goes on to explain:

  1. The U.S. has already increased it's supply of oil for its own consumption from 50% to 72% in the last 10 years.
    • "The implications of this shift are very large for geopolitics, energy security, historical military alliances and economic activity. As US reliance on the Middle East continues to drop, Europe is turning more dependent and will likely become more exposed to rent-seeking behaviour from oligopolistic players," said Mr [Francisco] Blanch [from Bank of America] .
  2. According to a recent Boston Consulting Group report
    • Chinese wage inflation running at 16pc a year for a decade has closed much of the cost gap. China is no longer the "default location" for cheap plants supplying the US
  3. The fed has "unintentionally" created inflation in China.
    • As Philadelphia Fed chief Sandra Pianalto said last week, US manufacturing is "very competitive" at the current dollar exchange rate. Whether intended or not, the Fed's zero rates and $2.3 trillion printing blitz have brought matters to an abrupt head for China
  4. Things are getting worse, not better in the EU.
    • The European Central Bank has since made matters worse (for Italy, Spain, Portugal, and France) by keeping rates above those of the US, UK, and Japan. That has been a deliberate policy choice. It let real M1 deposits in Italy contract at a 7pc annual rate over the summer. May it live with the consequences.
The bottom line is, we are likely to succeed where others have failed because when the playing field becomes more level, manufacturing will likely come back the U.S.  States like South Caroline, Alabama and Tennessee will become the lowest cost place to produce products (along with other factors like infrastructure and security).  

Here's to hoping they are right!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

How many more food producers will go bankrupt before Washington D.C. realizes its ethanol subsidy is driving companies out of business?

Chicken producer Cagle's files Chapter 11

Atlanta Business Chronicle

Date: Thursday, October 20, 2011, 10:27am EDT

One of Georgia's oldest companies, chicken producer Cagle's Inc. , has filed for Chapter 11 protection.
The Atlanta-based company (AMEX: CGL-A), which has been in business for more than 60 years, said it will attempt to restructure its debt.
"Over the past few years, the poultry industry has been under severe stress due to historically high corn and soybean meal prices coupled with sagging chicken prices caused by an oversupply of broilers. As a result, Cagle’s has incurred significant operating losses that have depleted its liquidity and working capital position," the company said.
Allen Family Foods,Seeks Bankruptcy Protection
By Dawn McCarty - Jun 9, 2011 1:35 PM ET
Allen Family Foods Inc., a chicken producer based in Seaford,Delaware, filed for bankruptcy protection citing changes in the market for poultry.
The company listed both assets and debt in the range of $50 million to $100 million in Chapter 11 documents filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware. Affiliates Allen’s Hatchery and JCR Enterprises also sought protection.
“A recent lag in the industry market has forced the company to reposition the business by reducing volume and diversifying its product line,” Vice President of Finance Brian Hildreth said in court papers.
Chicken processing plant files to sell assetsBy MARY PIEPER, Courier Lee News Service
Thursday, April 21, 2011 4:50 am

The owners of a closed chicken processing plant in Charles City have filed a motion in bankruptcy court to sell all its assets free and clear of liens.
Custom Poultry Processing LLC is proposing that an auction to sell its assets take place at 9 a.m. on May 26 in the courtroom for U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Iowa in Cedar Rapids.

Delaware Poultry Producer, Townsend files for bankruptcy

24 Dec 2010

Townsends Poultry in Georgetown, Delaware, USA, files voluntary Chapter 11 Petitions to address challenges in difficult market conditions. Operations will continue.
Townsends, Inc. and four wholly owned subsidiaries announced that they have filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code. The company's operations are expected to continue during the bankruptcy process as it explores its strategic alternatives.

Do you suppose ANYONE in Washington D.C. is even noticing the "trend" in food company bankruptcies?

If they are, do you think they are smart enough to connect the dots and realize it might have something to do with them redirecting 40% of the corn grow in the U.S. into ethanol instead of into food?

Do you suppose they ever have to pick up a tab of their own when they go out to eat and realize that the cost of food is going up?

Or, maybe they don't really care, as long as their economic engineering is seen as politically correct?

Maybe, just maybe, they really don't care.  After all, if food gets too expensive, they'll just vote themselves a new cost of living increase.  I mean, we wouldn't want them scraping by on their measly $174,000 (congress) , $193,000 (congressional leadership) or $223,000 (Speaker of the House). 

And they can't figure out why we believe they are out of touch...?

By Pete Kasperowicz 10/19/11 10:16 AM ET

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Wednesday indicated Congress needs to worry about government jobs more than private-sector jobs, and that this is why Senate Democrats are pushing a bill aimed at shoring up teachers and first-responders.
"It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine; it's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers, and that's what this legislation is all about," Reid said on the Senate floor.
I'm sorry, but has he had a head injury we've not been told about?   Does he really believe this or is he just saying so others might believe it (i.e., lying to the "masses" in hopes no one will use the internet to find out )?  Obamacare alone authorizes 16,000 new IRS agents.  If total government jobs are down, it is because state and local governments, who cannot print their own money, have had to cut their payrolls because their revenue is dropping like a rock.  I mean, with 14,000,000 people unemployed and up to another 10-11,000,000 underemployed, tax revenues at all levels are down.  

The simple facts are, Harry Reid and all his Democrat buddies need to get the unionised employees back to work in order to collect the dues which then get used to fund their campaigns.  It is this unholy alliance that Scott Walk is breaking up in Wisconsin.  Don't believe me?

Reid reiterated his emphasis on creating government jobs by saying Democrats are looking to "put hundreds of thousands of people back to work teaching [NEA] children, have more police patrolling our streets, firefighters fighting our fires, doing the rescue work that they do so well … that's our priority." He said Republicans are calling the bill a "failure" because they are "using a different benchmark for success than we are."  {Links added by me.}
All unions are nothing more than money laundering schemes for the Democrat Party.  The problem is, recent history has shown that private sector union memberships are dropping like a rock, so only public sector unions are available to increase their membership and thus their dues and thus their contributions to the campaigns of Democrats......  See how easy it all is?

The REAL Occupy Wall Street crowd...

I am not sure which is more disturbing, the racist rants coming from a black person or the fact that she holds a teachers certification in CA and is allowed to potentially spew this venom in a class room....

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

In the meantime, Cain's 9-9-9 plan gets stamp of approval....

Cain's Stimulating '9-9-9' Tax Reform

October 19, 2011

A new sales tax could be raised in the future—but so can any 

other tax. And the low marginal rates would jump-start the 


Here's the highlights:

....federal tax revenues from the personal and business income taxes, all payroll taxes, and the capital gains, gift and estate taxes have averaged $2.3 trillion, while gross domestic product has averaged about $14.5 trillion. The total revenue from these taxes as a share of gross domestic product averages around 16%. Sometimes it's a good deal higher, as in the boom of the late 1990s, and sometimes its lower, as in today's "Great Recession." But a number in the 16%-19% range is as good as you'll get under our current tax code.
By contrast, the three tax bases for Mr. Cain's 9-9-9 plan add up to about $33 trillion. But the plan exempts from any tax people below the poverty line. Using poverty tables, this exemption reduces each tax base by roughly $2.5 trillion. Thus, Mr. Cain's 9-9-9 tax base for his business tax is $9.5 trillion, for his income tax $7.7 trillion, and for his sales tax $8.3 trillion. And there you have it! Three federal taxes at 9% that would raise roughly $2.3 trillion and replace the current income tax, corporate tax, payroll tax (employer and employee), capital gains tax and estate tax.

A static revenue-neutral tax change requires static winners and losers. And this 9-9-9 plan has made certain that even on static terms those below the poverty line will be better off—period. Once the dynamics take hold, many of those below the poverty line will find good jobs and thus will rise above the poverty line and start paying taxes.
And finally: 
This is the type of tax increase I wholeheartedly support. I support collecting more in taxes from people with high incomes who choose to actually pay taxes at lower tax rates than use lawyers and accountants to avoid taxes at higher tax rates. Some tax revenues at low tax rates is a heckuva lot better than no tax revenues at high tax rates.

Done deal.  9-9-9 is now a mainstream idea.  If Art Laffer believes this will work, I am behind it and Cain 100%.

Go Herminator! 

Monday, October 17, 2011

What happens to a city after decades of Democrat rule....?

Detroit struggles to keep lights on

Copper thieves, aging equipment darken blocks in cash-starved city

Leonard N. Fleming/ The Detroit News

October 17. 2011 1:00AM

The growing lack of public lighting has become a troubling problem for cash-starved Detroit, where entire stretches of neighborhoods and thoroughfares — such as portions of the Southfield Freeway — are feeling the effects.
City officials estimate 15-20 percent of the 88,000 lights in the Motor City are not working, and they acknowledge that figure could be as high as 50 percent in some neighborhoods. Providing lighting to the city costs $10.7 million annually.
And often when they are fixed, they break down weeks and months later — or thieves steal the high-grade cable for its copper materials.
One of the city's premier neighborhoods, Indian Village boasts 350 mostly large, stately, eclectic homes that house diverse residents. The area is only three streets wide between Jefferson and Mack on the city's east side. But after thieves — in broad daylight and under the cover of darkness — stole every transformer on each pole, the area has been dark at night for months. The only light in the neighborhood comes from decorative gas lamps maintained by homeowners in front of their homes.
Public Lighting crews showed up to the neighborhood recently to repair 50 or so lights. Cornelius Johnson and a lighting department crew described the problem to neighborhood resident Wicks as he strolled down Seminole one block from his home. Transformers on every pole had been ripped out and wires hanging.
"One light at a time," Johnson told Wicks. "And pray nothing goes on anywhere else. This isn't all we do. But we'll get them on, don't worry about that. There's no guarantee that it will last, but we're giving it a good effort."
And of course:

Missing manhole covers plague Flint neighborhoods

By Kristin Longley | Flint Journal 
Published: Monday, June 13, 2011, 8:00 AM     Updated: Monday, June 13, 2011, 8:35 AM

Manhole covers, sewer grates and the occasional stop sign are disappearing from city streets, the victims of brazen scrap metal thieves who steal and deal them for quick cash.
It’s happening every day, said Joe Pilara, Flint utilities superintendent. Thursday night alone, the city lost 15 covers, he said.
“This is like an epidemic all over the city,” said 3rd Ward Councilman Bryant Nolden. “It’s just ridiculous.”
The illegal scrapping has the cash-strapped city spending time and resources to mark the exposed manholes and sewers with construction barriers before they swallow a passing vehicle’s tire or an unknowing pedestrian, costing the city even more in the long run.

And who could for get this forward thinker: 

The Mayor Of Detroit’s Radical Plan To Bulldoze One Quarter Of The City

Faced with a 300 million dollar budget deficit and a rapidly dwindling tax base, Detroit finds itself having to make some really hard choices.  During the glory days of the 1950s, Detroit was a booming metropolis of approximately 2 million people, but now young people have left in droves and the current population is less than a million.  The true unemployment rate for those still living in Detroit is estimatedto be somewhere around 45 to 50 percent, and poverty and desperation have become entrenched everywhere.  In many areas of the city, only one or two houses remain occupied an an entire city block.  In fact, some areas of Detroit have so many vacant, burned-out homes that they literally look like war zones.  And yes, it is true that there are actually some houses in Detroit that you can actually buy for just one dollar.  According to one recent estimate, Detroit has 33,500 empty houses and 91,000 vacant residential lots.  So what can be done when an entire city experiences economic collapse? 
Well, Detroit Mayor Dave Bing believes that the answer is to downsize on a massive scale.  Bing believes that Detroit simply cannot continue to pay for police patrols, fire protection and other essential services for areas that resemble ghost towns.
So his plan is to bulldoze approximately 10,000 houses and empty buildings over the next 3 years and direct new investment into stronger neighborhoods.  In the areas that the city plans to bulldoze, the residents would be offered the opportunity to relocate to a better area.  For buildings that have already been abandoned, the city could simply use tax foreclosure proceedings to reclaim them.  Of course if there were some residents that did not want to move, eminent domain could be used to force them out.

I guess that means they are just quitting....  No sense trying to change the situation.  Change the rules of the game.  Just quit.  No sense fighting....  Those pesky Republicans thwart them at every turn...  So, let's just bulldoze (or "downsize the scale") of the problem....  

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Great Expose' on the Zuccotti Park of the "Occupy Wall Street" fame...

This is NOT MY ORIGINAL WORK!  I wish it had been, but alas I have a job and commitments which prevent me from taking the time to create an expose' like this.  None the less it is an awesome piece of citizen journalism...

Corporation that owns Zuccotti "Protester" Park Wins $168 Million Loan Guarantee from Obama DOE!
Original Research ^ | Oct. 11, 2011 | chatteringclassof58/FightinJAG, ed. 
Posted on Tue Oct 11 2011 05:51:57 GMT-0400 (Eastern Daylight Time) by fightinJAG
(This info was developed and originally posted by chatteringclassof58. The original post was deleted. This is an edited version of the material.)

Occupy Wall Street protesters have been camped out in and trashing Zuccotti Park for weeks. Zuccotti Park is a very nice private park, right in the middle of Manhattan.

Zuccotti Park is owned by Brookfield Office Properties, which is part of Brookfield Asset Management, worth at least $150 billion.

Brookfield Office Properties

Mayor Bloomberg has said he can do nothing about the protest unless the park owners (Brookfield Properties) ask the protesters to be evicted. Brookfield issued a statement that it was okay with them if the protesters stayed on their private property.

NYPD: Only Landlord Can Evict Occupy Wall Street Protesters From Zuccotti Park

That’s pretty nice of a big evil corporation to let protesters sleep, smoke weed and go number one and two on its nice private park in downtown Manhattan. Especially since the protesters are protesting big evil corporations. (But then again, President Obama expressed solidarity with the Occupy Wall Street protesters, Nancy Pelosi said “God Bless Them,” and Bill Ayers is writing their collective Occupy Wall Street demands. So someone loves them.)

Hmm. Wonder what that’s about.

Maybe Mayor Bloomberg has some inside track on what’s going on here? After all, Bloomberg’s longtime shack-up girlfriend, Diana L. Taylor, is on the Board of Directors of Brookfield Properties, the company that owns Zuccotti Park. (She’s also served as the CFO of the Long Island Power Authority.)

You can read about Ms. Taylor here:

Diana L. Taylor

Brookfield Office Properties Board of Directors, Diana L. Taylor

Zuccotti Park is named after John E. Zuccotti, a member of the Brookfield Properties board.

Profile of John E. Zuccotti

John Zuccotti was also a long-term member of the Board of Directors of WellPoint Health Network (also known as Blue Cross of California, Blue Cross of Georgia, Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield in New York, Blue Cross Blue Shield in Missouri and Wisconsin, HealthLink, and UNICARE.).

WellPoint Health Networks

President Obama used WellPoint as an example of the evils that would be exorcized by Obamacare. In fact, some argue that WellPoint, along with other large health insurers, willingly colluded with the Obama administration in order to save Obamacare from an otherwise certain political death.

How the Health Insurance Industry Saved Obamacare


When the dust settled and people were actually able to read Obamacare, turns out it favors WellPoint.

Forbes: Obamacare Favors WellPoint

A few years ago, Brookfield Properties became the largest client in a start-up lobbying firm called Oldaker, Biden & Belair. Yes, the same Hunter Biden who was on the Board of Amtrak while Daddy was pouring Fedgov money down that rathole.

Some of Brookfield's lobbying history here and here.

One of the big divisions of Brookfield Asset Management is Brookfield Renewable Energy. You know where this is going. This company has received hundreds of millions, if not billions, in “green” grants, stimulus money and DOE loans (a la Solyndra).

First, about Brookfield Renewable Energy:

Brookfield Asset Management is looking to merge its hydroelectric and wind power assets into the world's second-largest public renewable power company in a move designed to cash in on the growing demand for cleaner power.

With a market capitalization of $6 billion, it would rank behind Italy's ENEL GP's $10-billion equity value and ahead of EDP of France and Portugal's EDF Group.

"The renewable power generation sector is increasingly becoming a meaningful portion of the new energy supply on a global basis," Richard Legault, CEO of Brookfield's power operations, said on conference calls with analysts and bondholders.

"Brookfield continues to believe that the strong growth in renewables will be driven by widespread acceptance of the need to reduce the world's carbon footprint, challenges faced by competing technologies such as coal or nuclear generation and the desire for energy self-sufficiency pursued by many governments through various policies and incentives."

A quick search of what Brookfield is up to:

A NH Solyndra? Wind farm gets fed loan

In the name of “green energy,” the Obama administration is using taxpayer money to subsidize a New Hampshire wind farm that is a subsidiary of a hugely profitable company.

New Hampshire’s largest wind farm, the Granite Reliable Power project under construction in Coos County, is jointly owned by BAIF Granite Holdings, LLC and Freshnet Wind Energy, LLC. BAIF owns 75 percent of Granite Reliable. BAIF Granite Holdings was created earlier this year by Brookfield Renewable Power, which is a subsidiary of Brookfield Asset Management of New York.

That company, which runs clean energy operations around the world, has deep pockets. It reported net income of $454 million in 2009 and $3.2 billion in 2010.

Brookfield Renewable Power financed the creation of BAIF Granite Holdings from its Brookfield Americas Infrastructure fund, which was reported in February to have $2.7 billion in assets. 

With that kind of backing, it is curious that the U.S. Department of Energy announced it would guarantee up to 80 percent of a $168.9 million loan for the Granite Reliable wind farm project last week.

Why would a company created by a $3.2 billion company and backed by a $2.7 billion private fund need federal loan guarantees? That would be an important question at any time, but it is more pertinent after the bankruptcy of Solyndra, a solar-panel maker that got a $535 million federal loan guarantee from the Obama administration last year.

Granite Reliable’s wind farm is not proven, and Granite Reliable is a limited liability company, which provides broad investor protection if the company goes down. If the wind farm flops, and investors cut their losses, the taxpayers stand to lose $135 million.

What is the justification for risking $135 million in public money, especially on a company with access to so much private cash? Apparently, the justification is that Obama likes “green power” and wants to associate himself with it.

With the country running deficits as far as the eye can see, the Obama administration opts to spend money we don’t have to subsidize a risky venture undertaken by the subsidiary of a huge, profitable company. If that doesn’t perfectly illustrate what is wrong with crony capitalism in general and the Obama administration’s practice of it in particular, we don’t know what would.

Department of Energy Finalizes Loan Guarantee of Nearly $170 Million to Granite Reliable Power

September 23, 2011 - 3:31pm

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced today the Department of Energy finalized a partial guarantee for $168.9 million loan to Granite Reliable Power, LLC. The loan guarantee will support a 99 megawatt (MW) wind generation project that will be New Hampshire’s largest wind farm. The project will be located in Coos County in northern New Hampshire, approximately 110 miles north of Concord. Project sponsors, BAIF Granite Holdings, LLC and Freshet Wind Energy, LLC, expect the project will fund nearly 200 construction jobs. [Note: BAIF owns 75 percent of Granite Reliable. BAIF Granite Holdings was created earlier this year by Brookfield Renewable Power, which is a subsidiary of Brookfield Asset Management of New York.


Still wondering why a big evil corporation might be okay with a bunch of nasty protesters trashing its private property in beautiful downtown Manhattan?

As even the protesters could tell you, corporations don’t do stuff out of the goodness of their hearts.

Jimmy Obama....

What comes around goes around...

Democrats are the "Party of the People"....

.....  all the little people who will never get to partake in scandalous land deals and banking schemes. 

Pelosi’s disclosure belated in husband’s land deal

Partner is father of favored envoy

The Washington Times

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s husband, a real estate developer and investment banker, stands to make millions of dollars in a previously undisclosed residential real estate project in California as a partner with the father of a woman Mrs. Pelosi helped become ambassador toHungary, records show.
Paul F. Pelosi’s investment in Russell Ranch is worth at least $5 million and possibly as much as $25 million in a deal put together by his friend and longtime business associate, Angelo Tsakopoulos, patriarch of a multimillion-dollar real estate development firm, according to Mrs. Pelosi’s latest personal-disclosure statement.
Despite his involvement in the project dating back to the late 1990s, Mrs. Pelosi first listed the investment in May 2010 on her federal financial-disclosure forms covering the couple’s finances during 2009. The forms are required annually and are supposed to identify assets she and her husband have that are worth more than $1,000.
The first Russell Ranch listing came a month after The Washington Times raised questions about business dealings between Mr. Pelosi andMr. Tsakopoulos and Mrs. Pelosi’s successful efforts to help his daughter, Eleni Tsakopoulos-Kounalakis, become ambassador. For 2009, Mrs. Pelosi reported that the Russell Ranch investment was worth between $1 million and $5 million. The next year, she listed the value as between $5 million and $25 million.

Maxine Waters: Swamp Queen

To re-cap: OneUnited Bank received $12 million in federal TARP bailout money after Waters’ office personally intervened and lobbied the Treasury Department in 2008. The minority depository institution was seeking a backdoor government rescue from its reckless decision to squander nearly $52 million of its bank capital on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac preferred stock. Lavish spending by top bank executive Kevin Cohee, who boasted a company-financed Porsche and a Santa Monica, Calif., beachfront mansion, compounded the bank’s problems.
After the federal bailout of Fannie/Freddie, OneUnited’s stock in the government-sponsored enterprises plunged to a value estimated at less than $5 million. Only through Waters’ intervention was OneUnited able to secure an emergency meeting with the Treasury and its then-Secretary Henry Paulson.

Business as usual for the Dems.  We are supposed to be grateful they are up there "fighting for the [little] people.... 

I wish they'd all just go home and let someone with a modicum of morals & ethics run things for a few hundred years.....  

Where, oh where is our next George Washington, John Adams, even Thomas Jefferson....?