There are no final victories.
Cows At Home: Bernanke asserts that the new QE effort - printing $85 billion in new money every month - won't dilute the value of the existing money stock. Did somebody change the definition of the verb 'to dilute'? If it doesn't work and the TPTB fail to redefine unemployment down to 6.5%, will these floodgates remain open indefinitely?
Bank On It: Eurozone finance ministers have agreed on a 'legal framework' (sic) that will put Europe's 200 largest banks “under the direct oversight of the ECB, which will act as chief supervisor of eurozone banks.” The idea is to allow eurozone banks to be recapitalized directly, without making their national governments liable for the debt. The ECB will also be able to intervene in smaller banks, pretty much at will. No one asked the voters of any of these countries if they wanted their banks controlled by
Germany the ECB.
Inquiring Minds: If the Trans-Pacific Partnership is going to be such a marvelous thing, why are the negotiations being held in such tight secrecy? Maybe because of things like the TPP demand that signatory countries “shall conform their domestic laws, regulations and administrative procedures” to the terms of the agreement. In other words, unknown and unelected people are agreeing to force a number of countries – including the US – to cede sovereignty to the TPP on matters of trade. Like Nafta. Whoopee.
Power of Positive Wishing: Bernanke is convinced that when the Fed wants to dump its immense store of low-interest mortgage-backed securities, the fools'll line up 3 deep. He's also sure that a couple of trillion dollars worth of them won't dampen appetites, even though the Fed would sell them into rising inflation.
Bipartisanship: While the administration and House Republicans can barely tolerate each other's fiscal policies, they are agreed on the need to continue and expand the government's 'targeted killing' program, and the absolute lack of a need for any supervision of same. Anyway, if they told you, they'd have to kill you.
Depends On Who You Know: The Administration asked for $210 million in aid to Israel for its 'Iron Dome' anti-missile system. The Senate approved $420 million and the House Republicans upped that to $680 million. Deficit, what deficit?
Laundry List: HBSC, fined $1.9 billion for laundering drug money. Standard Charted of NY, $327 million, money laundering. UBS, fined $1 billion for manipulating Libor. Barclays, $450 million, ditto. RBS is up next. US and EU banks launder nearly a trillion dollars every year; think these piddling fees are going to stop them? Ha, “the entire financial sector has become an organized criminal entity.” Steal $63.48 from the local store, go to jail for four years. Fair's fair, right?
Why Is This News? Everyone is scandalized that Google - just like The Mitten - is defending its tax avoidance as a routine exercise of capitalism, which it is. This is not “morally bankrupt” as some allege, it's just business. Last year, Google had £2.5 billion in sales in the UK but paid £6million in taxes, and hid £10 billion in Bermuda, saving £2 billion in taxes.
Porn O'Graph:Primarily easing.