Suddenly "Russian meddling" is back in the headlines and no one is talking about FBI collusion to present false information to FISA for permission to spy on the Trump campaign. No one is talking about a foreign agent (Christopher Steele) who actually did produce a document that influenced the election. It's back to the Russians. Why?
By Tyler Durden
Former CIA chief James Woolsey appeared on Fox News to push the narrative of how dastardly 'dem Russkies' are in their meddling with the sacred soul of America's democracy.
Woolsey did his patriotic deep-state-duty and proclaimed the evils of "expansionist Russia" and dropped 'facts' like "Russia has a larger cyber-army than its standing army," before he moved on to China and its existential threats.
But then, beginning at around 4:30, the real debacle of the conversation begins as Ingraham asks Woolsey,
"Have we ever tried to meddle in other countries' elections?"
Hes responds, surprisingly frankly...
"Oh probably... but it was for the good of the system..."
To which Ingraham follows up...
"We don't do that now though? We don't mess around in other people's elections?"
Prompting this extraordinary sentence from a former CIA chief...
"Well...hhhmmm, numm numm numm numm... only for a very good cause...in the interests of democracy"
So just to clarify - yes, the CIA chief admitted that Democracy-spreading 'Murica meddled in the Democratic elections of other nations "in the interests of democracy."
In case you wondered which ones he was referring to, here's a brief selection since 1948...
2016: UK (verbal intervention against Brexit)
2014: Afghanistan (effectively re-writing Afghan constitution)
2014: UK (verbal intervention against Scottish independence)
2011: Libya (providing support to overthrow Colonel Gaddafi)
2009: Honduras (ousting President Zelaya)
2006: Palestine (providing support to oust Prime Minister Haniyeh)
2005: Syria (providing support against President al-Assad)
2003: Iran (providing support against President Khatami)-
2003: Iraq (ousting of President Hussein)
2002: Venezuela (providing support to attempt an overthrow of President Chavez)
1999: Yugoslavia (removing Yugoslav forces from Kosovo)
1994: Iraq (attempted overthrow of President Hussein)
1991: Haiti (ousting President Aristide)
1991: Kuwait (removing Iraqi forces from Kuwait)
1989: Panama (ousting General Noriega)
1983: Grenada (ousting General Austin's Marxist forces)
1982: Nicaragua (providing support
1971: Chile (ousting President Allende)
1967: Indonesia (ousting President Sukarno)
1964: Brazil (ousting President Goulart)
1964: Chile (providing support against Salvador Allende)
1961: Congo (assassination of leader Lumumba)
1958: Lebanon (providing support to Christian political parties)
1954: Guatemala (ousting President Arbenz)
1953: Iran (ousting Prime Minister Mossadegh)
1953: Philippines (providing support to the President Magsaysay campaign)
1948: Italy (providing support to the Christian Democrats campaign)
This article was originally published at ZeroHedge.
If the creation of new money affected everyone evenly, there would be no point in government granting monopoly privileges to a central bank. It's precisely because some benefit at the expense of others, that monetary inflation is so intoxicating. The Federal Reserve is the beating heart of big government, military empire, and the welfare state. Ron Paul talks about the tough economic times that lie ahead.
President Trump is reportedly in favor of a big 25 cent per gallon federal gasoline tax increase to help pay for his infrastructure plan. Does it make any sense? Who will pay the most?
By Mac Slavo
People are fleeing the socialism forced on them in Venezuela by the hundreds of thousands. Starving, and facing violence over crumbs of food, many have no choice but to flee the wasteland which used the authority of government to destroy the lives of its citizens.
Thousands of Venezuelans are attempting to flee the socialist dystopia their nation has become. They are attempting to make it to Colombia. In a desperate bid to escape the hunger and soaring crime rate caused by the spiraling economic crisis, fueled by socialist policies, incredible pictures have surfaced showing the mass exodus of refugees crossing the Simon Bolivar international bridge trying to flee the ongoing political crisis threatening to engulf Venezuela.
Colombia and its neighbor Brazil have both sent extra soldiers to patrol their porous borders with Venezuela after officially taking in more than half a million migrants over the last six months of 2017. The country is also tightening its border controls in a bid to stem the flow of starving people. The situation in Venezuela has reached SHTF levels.
Truck drivers are subjected to horrific violence as looters target heavy goods vehicles carrying food in a desperate attempt to feed their families. The truckers are banned by the government from carrying guns to protect themselves, so have resorted to forming convoys to protect each other. They text each other warnings about potential trouble spots and keep moving as fast as possible.
According to Reuters, there were 162 lootings across Venezuela in January, including 42 robberies of trucks. That is compared to just eight lootings, including one truck robbery, 12 months ago. Last month, eight people were killed in lootings alone. Venezuela has one of the world’s highest murder rates and the attacks are pushing up food and transport costs.
Massive numbers of Venezuelans have been driven from their homes by the dire financial crisis spurred by the disease that is socialism. Many are struggling to feed themselves and their only hope may be an exodus to Colombia. “Colombia has never lived a situation like the one we are encountering today,” said Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos. On Thursday, Santos announced new measures that would make it much more difficult for Venezuelan migrants to cross into the country illegally or remain there without any official status.
Colombia believes that there are currently around 600,000 Venezuelans illegally residing in the country. That number is expected to rise, as Venezuela continues to crumble.
This article was originally published at SHTFplan.com
This week President Trump delivered his 2019 military spending budget request. He vowed to rebuild the "depleted" military with a massive increase in spending. Will we be more economically secure with a trillion dollars dumped into military spending? How about our national security, with many more foreign military adventures newly funded?
US neocons are up in arms that the North Koreans showed up to the Olympics in South Korea with smiles on their faces. Vice President Mike Pence spent his time frowning, concerned that Americans may relax their two minutes of hate directed at North Korea. What's so bad about the Koreas working out their own problems?
By Ron Paul
In addition to funding for a border wall and other border security measures, immigration hardliners are sure to push to include mandatory E-Verify in any immigration legislation considered by Congress. E-Verify is a (currently) voluntary program where businesses check job applicants’ Social Security numbers and other Information — potentially including “biometric” identifiers like fingerprints — against information stored in a federal database to determine if the job applicants are legally in the United States.
Imagine how much time would be diverted from serving consumers and growing the economy if every US business had to comply with E-Verify. Also, collecting the relevant information and operating the mandatory E-Verify system will prove costly to taxpayers.
Millions of Americans could be denied jobs because E-Verify mistakenly identifies them as illegal immigrants. These Americans would be forced to go through a costly and time-consuming process to force the government to correct its mistake. It is doubtful employers could afford to keep jobs open while potential hires went through this process.
A federal database with Social Security numbers and other identifying information is an identify thief’s dream. Given the federal government’s poor track record for protecting personal information, is there any doubt mandatory E-Verify would put millions of Americans at risk for identity theft?
Some supporters of E-Verify deny the program poses any threat to civil liberties, as it will only be used to verify citizenship or legal residency. They even claim a system forcing individuals to have their identities certified by the government is not a national ID system. These individuals are ignoring the history of government programs sold as only affecting a particular group or being used for a limited purpose being expanded beyond initial targets. For example, Americans were promised that only the wealthiest Americans would ever pay income taxes. And some of the PATRIOT Act’s worst provisions that we were told would only be used against terrorists are routinely used to investigate drug crimes.
E-Verify almost certainly will be used for purposes unrelated to immigration. One potential use of E-Verify is to limit the job prospects of anyone whose lifestyle displeases the government. This could include those accused of failing to pay their fair share in taxes, those who homeschool or do not vaccinate their children, or those who own firearms.
Unscrupulous government officials could use E-Verify against those who practice antiwar, anti-tax, anti-surveillance, and anti-Federal Reserve activism. Those who consider this unlikely should remember the long history of the IRS targeting the political enemies of those in power and the use of anti-terrorism laws to harass antiwar activists. They should also consider the current moves to outlaw certain types of “politically incorrect” speech, such as disputing the alleged “consensus” regarding climate change.
Claiming that mandatory E-Verify is necessary to stop illegal immigration does not make it constitutional. Furthermore, having to ask the federal government for permission before obtaining a job is a characteristic of authoritarian societies, not free ones. History shows that mandatory E-Verify’s use will expand beyond immigration enforcement and could be used as a tool of political repression. All those who value liberty should oppose mandatory E-Verify.
By Simon Black
Less than two weeks ago, the United States Department of Treasury very quietly released its own internal projections for the federal government’s budget deficits over the next several years.
And the numbers are pretty gruesome.
In order to plug the gaps from its soaring deficits, the Treasury Department expects to borrow nearly $1 trillion this fiscal year.
Then nearly $1.1 trillion next fiscal year.
And up to $1.3 trillion the year after that.
This means that the national debt will exceed $25 trillion by September 30, 2020.
Remember, this isn’t some wild conspiracy theory. These are official government projections published by the United States Department of Treasury.
This story alone is monumental– not only does the US owe, by far, the greatest amount of debt ever accumulated by a single nation in human history, but $25 trillion is larger than the debts of every other nation in the world combined.
But there are other themes at work here that are even more important.
For example– how is it remotely possible that the federal government can burn through $1 trillion?
Everything is supposedly totally awesome in the United States. The economy is strong, unemployment is low, tax revenue is at record levels.
It’s not like they had to fight a major two front war, save the financial system from an epic crisis, or battle a severe economic depression.
It’s just been business as usual. Nothing really out of the ordinary.
And yet they’re still losing trillions of dollars.
This is pretty scary when you think about it. What’s going to happen to the US federal deficit when there actually IS a financial crisis or major recession?
And none of those possibilities are factored into their projections.
The largest problem of all, though, is that the federal government is going to have a much more difficult time borrowing the money.
For the past several years, the government has always been able to rely on the usual suspects to loan them money and buy up all the debt, namely– the Federal Reserve, the Chinese, and the Japanese.
Those three alone have loaned trillions of dollars to the US government since the end of the financial crisis.
The Federal Reserve in particular, through its “Quantitative Easing” programs, was on an all-out binge, buying up every long-dated Treasury Bond it could find, like some sort of junkie debt addict.
And both Chinese and Japanese holdings of US government debt now exceed $1 trillion each, more than double what they were before the 2008 crisis.
But now each of those three lenders is out of the game.
The Federal Reserve has formally ended its Quantitative Easing program. In other words, the Fed has said it will no longer conjure money out of thin air to buy US government debt.
The Chinese government said point blank last month that they were ‘rethinking’ their position on US government debt.
And the Japanese have their own problems at home to deal with; they need to scrap together every penny they can find to dump into their own economy.
Official data from the US Treasury Department illustrates this point– both China and Japan have slightly reduced their holdings of US government debt since last summer.
Bottom line, all three of the US government’s biggest lenders are no longer buyers of US debt.
There’s a pretty obvious conclusion here: interest rates have to rise.
Read the rest at Sovereign Man