"When, O Catiline, do you mean to cease abusing our patience? How long is that madness of yours still to mock us? When is there to be an end of that unbridled audacity of yours, swaggering about as it does now?
23 October 2014
There was little of note in the Comex delivery report but there was a sizable withdrawal of gold reported from storage at the JP Morgan warehouse, about a third of the total at ten tonnes. Let's see if that turns up anywhere, or is another fat finger. An individual event is of less matter than the significance of the trend. And the trends are apparent.
Wall Street is drawing pictures on the Comex price charts, and there are those who will keep their heads down and continue to read them as if it is business as usual. They will not look at the reports from the new markets in Asia. They will ignore the uncomfortable and the unfamiliar. They are oblivious to the approach of change. Quite a few do not look at all.
They do not understand what is occurring in the world's financial and monetary structures. They only know what they have seen in their short lifetimes, and in their familiar places. And they often do not respect what they do not understand. Well, this is what makes a market interesting.
Gold is moving from West to East. And therein lies both risks and opportunity, to those who will have an eye willing to see it.
There is a Comex option expiration next Tuesday the 28th, and an FOMC rate decision on the 29th. It might be a hard week for the metals bulls.
Let's see what happens.
Have a pleasant evening.
Stocks were off to the races this morning as the short squeeze gathered some new momentum from the 'better than expected' results in global PMI overnight.
Stocks were interrupted in their ascent in the later afternoon on a flash report that a doctor who had been caring for the sick in Africa is being tested for ebola at Bellevue Hospital in NYC.
Stocks lost almost half their gains quickly as the algos saw the headline and triggered selling, and then recovered a bit into the close.
This is a thin, technically traded market. A simple headline such as this was able to knock it back on its heels. Be aware of this and take it into account if you are anything but a daytrader.
After the bell Microsoft posted better than expected earnings and revenues, while Amazon posted a horrendous miss, losing .95 per share versus an expected .74 per share. And their revenues missed badly as well.
It was a nice rally today, and it may continue tomorrow if nothing happens to scare the machine trading. Wall Street has a chance to post its best week in a year, and they may go for the headline if reality does not intrude.
Have a pleasant evening.
Posted by Jesse at 4:37 PM
"There is a lack of critical assessment of the past. But you have to understand that the current ruling elite is actually the old ruling elite. So they are incapable of a self-critical approach to the past."
Mammon in the City of London, 1889
Are they incapable, or merely unwilling? That is the credibility trap, the inability to address the key problems because the ruling elite must risk or even undermine their own undeserved power to do so.
I think this interview below highlights the false dichotomy between communism and free market capitalism that was created in the 1980's largely by Thatcher's and Reagan's handlers. The dichotomy was more properly between communist government and democracy, of the primacy of the individual over the primacy of the organization and the state as embodied in fascism and the real world implementations of communism in Russia and China.
But we never think of it that way any more, if at all. It is one of the greatest public relation coups in history. One form of organizational oppression by the Russian nomenklatura was replaced by the oppression by the oligarchs and their Corporations, in the name of freedom.
Free market capitalism, under the banner of the efficient markets hypothesis, has taken the place of democratic ideals as the primary good as embodied in the original framing of the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution.
It is no accident that the individual and their concerns have become subordinated to the corporate welfare and the profits of the upper one percent. We even see this in religion with the 'gospel of prosperity.' In their delusion they make friends of the mammon of unrighteousness, so that after they may be received into their everlasting habitations.
The market as the highest good has stood on the shoulders of the 'greed is good' philosophy promulgated by the pied pipers of the me generation, and has turned the Western democracies on their heads, as a series of political leaders have capitulated to this false idol of money as the measure of all things, and all virtue.
Policy is now crafted to maximize profits as an end to itself without regard to the overall impact on freedom and the public good. It measures 'costs' in the most narrow and biased of terms, and allocated wealth based on the subversion of good sense to false economy theories.
Greed is a portion of the will to power. And that madness serves none but itself.
This is a brief excerpt. You may read the entire interview here.
Henry Giroux on the Rise of Neoliberalism
19 October 2014
By Michael Nevradakis, Truthout
"...We're talking about an ideology marked by the selling off of public goods to private interests; the attack on social provisions; the rise of the corporate state organized around privatization, free trade, and deregulation; the celebration of self interests over social needs; the celebration of profit-making as the essence of democracy coupled with the utterly reductionist notion that consumption is the only applicable form of citizenship.
But even more than that, it upholds the notion that the market serves as a model for structuring all social relations: not just the economy, but the governing of all of social life...
That's a key issue. I mean, this is a particular political and economic and social project that not only consolidates class power in the hands of the one percent, but operates off the assumption that economics can divorce itself from social costs, that it doesn't have to deal with matters of ethical and social responsibility, that these things get in the way.
And I think the consequences of these policies across the globe have caused massive suffering, misery, and the spread of a massive inequalities in wealth, power, and income. Moreover, increasingly, we are witnessing a number of people who are committing suicide because they have lost their pensions, jobs and dignity.
We see the attack on the welfare state; we see the privatization of public services, the dismantling of the connection between private issues and public problems, the selling off of state functions, deregulations, an unchecked emphasis on self-interest, the refusal to tax the rich, and really the redistribution of wealth from the middle and working classes to the ruling class, the elite class, what the Occupy movement called the one percent. It really has created a very bleak emotional and economic landscape for the 99 percent of the population throughout the world."
The premium on Sprott Silver is high relative to historical norms, while the fund's cash levels are at an historically low percentage of assets.
As a reminder, you may always 'right click' and open in a new window or tab any of the charts and pictures on this site for a full sized view.
22 October 2014
"Anger is the enemy of non-violence, and pride is a monster that swallows it up."
There was a terrible shooting of some innocent people near the Parliament in Ottawa today. Such actions are never justified, and are simply murder, no matter what rationales some may wish to put forward. That these types of things may be used to promote oppressive responses by some is simply a doubling of the tragedy and injustice.
As Gandhi said, 'an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.'
Gold and particularly silver were under pressure for most of the day. They may have taken a pause at support.
It is interesting to see them run with stocks today, in the face of some exogenous risk events. They are certainly acting oddly. One has to wonder if this is a related action by the 'Plunge Protection Team' which feels free to purchase stocks at key points apparently to help restore confidence.
Huge offtakes of physical gold are occurring, as highlighted by the official statement from China concerning their acquisition of 2,199 tonnes of gold bullion in 2013.
Let's see how the rest of the week goes.
Have a pleasant evening.
"In the last days, perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, traitors, heady, high-minded having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof. Evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived."
John Henry Newman
And high amongst those self deceptions is the arrogance to presume that the killing of innocents is somehow justified by the ends, as some form of recompense for other evils done, or as a public statement. This is not justice, nor reform; it is simply murder.
Stocks were shaky on the opens, and then the unprovoked shooting of a soldier keeping guard at the Canadian War Memorial. Oil also moved lower, making traders a little nervous about global growth prospects because of the slackening of demand.
But all in all, this was a very technical day. Stocks had an amazing bounce off support, with the help of the financiers at the Fed, both in terms of words and as some submit the likely purchasing of stock futures at key junctures of the day by the 'Plunge Protection Team.'
This purchasing of stocks in order to avoid a market dislocation has been a portion of US financial policy going back to the days of Reagan, but was made more prominent under the Treasury of Robert Rubin in the Clinton years. That it exists is not a matter of debate. It is titled 'The Exchange Stabilization Fund.' Only their specific actions and motives are open to question.
So what next.
As I said, stocks retraced an amazing run higher to 'back kiss' support, which was prior resistance. It is their next two moves which will be most telling, and I suggest that you watch them closely factoring in the effects of any exogenous events to sift out the character of this market.
Will the recent efforts to inject money and 'confidence' in the markets take hold and become sustainable? Let's see what happens.
Have a pleasant evening.
Posted by Jesse at 4:18 PM
21 October 2014
I have always been curious about this photo. I wondered where it came from and who this person was. It has a certain tragic dignity about it.
Here is what I have been able to discover.
This photo first appeared in print in Life Magazine in their 3 March 1941 issue on page 29. This is the photo which I show above and not the more tightly cropped versions that are often used in documentaries.
The caption on the photo identifies it as "a Frenchman sheds tears of patriotic grief as the flags of his country's last regiments are exiled to Africa."
So obviously this is not a photo taken in 1940 in Paris, as the French regimental flags had been moved into the south of France in order to preserve them from the surrender. The flags themselves were not taken to Africa until 1941.
Here is a more commonly available photograph of the same scene. It is a moment frozen in time.
Marseille sous l'occupation by Lucien Gaillard says that this is a photo of Monsieur Jerôme Barzetti, taken in Marseilles on February 20, 1941. This is quite some time after the Nazi entrance into Paris in June, 1940.
I have not been able to find out anything else about him and do not have a hard copy of this book. He does look old enough to have fought in The Great War. Is he even French, or an Italian émigré who had fled the tyranny of Mussolini? Perhaps he was part of the Barzetti industrial family from Italy, and related to Federico who later founded Barzetti Pastries? I cannot say.
I wonder how he fared, and if he was able to see the restoration of France and the end of the war.
The still photo itself is actually taken from newsreel footage that was much later used in a US war film directed by Frank Capra as Chapter III - Divide and Conquer of his series, "Why We Fight." This film was produced in 1943 and begins after the conquest of Poland, and includes the fall of Benelux and France.
Here is the relevant clip from this US War Department film. Monsieur Barzetti makes his appearance at 54:50 in the film. It is a war film after all so you might excuse the somewhat florid rhetoric at the end.
Some have speculated that Capra may have staged portions of his series and I would certainly allow for that. But since the photo of our 'Frenchman who cried' appeared in 1941 in Life magazine, it is almost certain that had been taken from the newsreel footage of the day, which was sold to various outlets and used to create informative 'short subjects' to be shown at movie theatres.
Capra must have used that same footage in the creation of his own war film two years later.
So now we know something about 'The Frenchman Who Wept."
And well may we weep for the loss of our own freedom and tradition someday.
But who will care? Does anyone matter? Why should anyone care for us, and why should we care about this weeping Frenchman, his risings and fallings, his perplexity and concerns, his fears and his sorrows?
Because when the ocean's dry up, and the earth grows cold and dies, as the stars flicker and grow dim in the sky, and creation turns back into dust, Monsieur Barzetti's soul will continue on, vibrantly alive, and his tears will have long been wiped away, by kindly hands.
"De loin en loin, elle vient jeter dans l'âme du profond artiste un peu de sa paix, de sa grandeur mystérieuse, puis elle retourne à sa solitude immense, au milieu des rues pleines de peuple.Il n’y a qu’une tristesse, lui a-t-elle dit, la dernière fois, c’est de n’être pas de saints."Léon Bloy, La Femme Pauvre
The only sadness, she said to him, in the end, is not to be a saint.