Jim’s Mailbox

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Democracy?

Jim

Voter fraud in California?

JB

Signature Gatherers Bribed Skid Row Homeless People in ‘Large-Scale Voter Fraud Scheme,’ DA Says
November 20, 2018

Nine people are accused of various fraud charges after allegedly bribing homeless people on Skid Row with money and cigarettes to sign ballot measure petitions and voter registration forms, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.

The defendants allegedly solicited hundreds of false and/or forged signatures by offering homeless people $1 and/or cigarettes for their participation during the 2016 and 2018 cycles.

The charges include circulating a petition with false names, using a false name on a petition, registering a fictitious person and voter fraud.

Kirkland Kauzava Washington, 38, Harold Bennett, 53, and Louis Thomas Wise, 36, each face eight counts and six years and four months in prison if convicted.

Richard Howard, 62, Rose Makeda Sweeney, 42, Christopher Joseph Williams, 66, Jakara Fati Mardis, 35, Norman Hall, 61, and Nickey Demelvin Huntley, 44, each face four counts and four years and eight months in prison if charged.

Prosecutors recommended that bail be set at $25,000 for each defendant.

The arrests of the defendants were part of an LAPD crack down on voter fraud, according to the Los Angeles Times, and the FBI also investigated.

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Jim,

Looks like President Trump is worried about the Petro dollar and US policy!

Dave

Trump Says Oil Prices Would “Go Through The Roof” If We Broke With Saudi Arabia; Wants Lower Rates
November 20, 2018

Shortly before departing to Florida for the Thanksgiving holiday, Trump issued a flurry of statements to reporters, covering everything from geopolitics, to monetary policy, to currencies, to his daugher’s emailing habits.

Echoing previous remarks, Trump started by saying he would like to see lower oil prices and interest rates.

Trump also repeated his earlier statement, saying that abandoning Saudi Arabia would be a mistake and that the Saudi situation is “complicated” and “is what it is.” The president also said that he will meet the Saudi Crown Prince in Argentina “if he’s there.”  Earlier, Trump said the U.S. would remain “steadfast partner” of Saudi Arabia after the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

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Courtesy of Dave.

Jim

America Has Built 800+ Military Bases Worldwide. So Why Can’t It Build a Mexican Border Wall?
November 20, 2018

 The US government has constructed at tremendous cost to its taxpayers some of the most impressive structures – both architectural and organizational – of all time. Yet somehow it has failed to build a viable wall on the Mexican border.

In 1931, during the Great Depression, the US government began construction of the Hoover Dam, one of the most ambitious civil engineering projects ever attempted. Employing thousands of US laborers, some 100 of whom reportedly lost their lives in the course of the project, the dam is mind-boggling due its sheer size, rivaling that of the pyramids.

At 726 feet tall, the wedge-shaped structure is 660 ft (200 m) thick at its base, narrowing to 45 ft (14 m) at the top, which provides enough room to accommodate a highway connecting Nevada and Arizona. The project required millions of cubic feet of concrete – said to be enough to pave a two-lane highway from San Francisco to New York – and tens of millions of pounds of steel.

Many decades later, the US government undertook another extensive project known as the US Embassy in Baghdad. Although rarely discussed in the US media, this 104-acre slice of American property in a foreign country is so immense that it rivals Vatican City in terms of size [the Vatican is an independent city-state, complete with its own euro-based currency and security detail, located inside of Rome].

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Jim/Bill,

A bank looking for a hedge……

Deutsche Bank Lost $60MM On Trade Meant To Minimize Risk

The most troubled German lender had put on a hedge to minimize risk at its U.S. equities business. Instead, the company lost tens of millions on the trade.    

    November 21, 2018

When it was right under their noses!

Weiner: “Buying Gold Is A Non-Expiring Hedge”

“In this scenario, the marginal buyer of gold will not be the speculator. It will be the mainstream investor who is desperate to protect himself from a financial system going mad again…”

    November 21, 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Diogenes, seeking the perfect hedge.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

 

Jim/Bill,

You know the system’s broke when…….

You get paid for a job POORLY done!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Waiting for the bonuses.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

Sears Asks To Pay Executive Bonuses Despite Bankruptcy
November 19, 2018

Struggling retailer Sears Holding Corp. this month asked a court to approve millions of dollars in bonuses to 18 company executives despite ongoing bankruptcy proceedings that led to the closures of dozens of store locations.

The company wants to pay a total of $8.5 million in bonuses to the executives as well as a further $16.9 million in retention bonuses to 322 other high-level employees, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. If approved, the payments would be dispersed over the company’s next two fiscal quarters.

Sears’ chief financial officer and chief digital officer are among the executives who would receive bonuses. The payouts to other employees would be tied to the company’s financial performance.

Sears declined to comment. A bankruptcy court is expected to decide on the request on Dec. 20.

The company, which includes Sears and Kmart stores, has struggled to maintain sales and store traffic amid the rise of e-commerce competitors. Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last October and said it would close 142 unprofitable stores as part of the restructuring process.

Sears is attempting to sell about 400 of its top-performing stores. An auction of the stores is expected to take place in January.

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Jim/Bill,

California wildfires have taken center stage this year.

Will financial wildfires follow suit? Contagion?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A contagion in the banking community could prompt a rush for the exits and another FED bailout.

But hey, it’s only money.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

These Banks Now Have A $41 Billion Problem With GE
November 21, 2018

Three weeks ago we reported that in the first nail to its investment grade coffin, GE had found itself completely shut out of the Commercial Paper market when Moody’s downgraded its senior unsecured rating to Baa1, from A2, and downgraded the short-term rating to P-2, from P-1, making future sales of CP impossible. So, in lieu of CP access, GE said it would replace that funding with a net $40.8 billion of available credit facilities committed from banks. Or, as we explained “GE will now use its revolver, which carries a higher interest rate, to fund what it previously achieved using CP.”

This transition in GE’s reliance from commercial paper to revolver is not just a problem for GE, however, which now faces higher funding costs and encumbered assets: with the industrial conglomerate’s business and operations deteriorating rapidly, GE has become a major headache for America’s largest banks almost overnight.

As Bloomberg reports, the five biggest Wall Street firms have committed to lending at least $3.5 billion each to GE even as the industrial giant is facing rising concerns about its viability and the sustainability of its debt.

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