Saturday, January 30, 2021

"GME Soars 75% After-Hours, Erases Losses After Liquidity-Constrained Robinhood Lifts Trading Ban"

"GME Soars 75% After-Hours, Erases Losses
 After Liquidity-Constrained Robinhood Lifts Trading Ban"
by Epic Economist

"In this video, we report the freshest news about the Reddit vs. Wall Street trading chaos, and all the market drama involving the latest developments of the battle between hedge funds and the RobinHood platform. And, of course, we expose why Redditors are howling in rage and taking their discontentment to the streets in demonstrations against the latest trading ban that limited the purchase of stock shares of major companies and sparked a heated debate that even made billionaire Elon Musk and Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez question the elite's hypocrisy surrounding the unreasonable and illegitimate prohibitions when it comes to letting other players join their game. After all, this is America, and, isn't the market supposed to be free? Well, that's what something we discuss in this video.

After experiencing a considerable decline as a result of the RobinHood trading ban, when the restrictions were allegedly removed, GameStop stock went up 75%, in that way, erasing all losses witnessed the day before. The new rally appeared to have gained force right after Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev appeared on CNBC. During the interview, Tenev said that in order to protect the firm and protect their customers they had to limit buying in those stocks. Tenev persistently denied there was any existing liquidity issue at the firm and affirmed Robinhood had tapped credit lines as a proactive measure. However, his explanation didn't stop Redditors from angrily reacting to the restrictions on the trading of several stocks, including AMC Entertainment, BlackBerry, Express, Koss, Naked Brand, Nokia, and of course, GameStop. 

The online investors took their discontentment to the streets in several locations to profess their anger surrounding discount brokerage, hedge funds, and the elites. Twitter account NYC Protest Updates reported that a small group of people was spotted outside the New York Stock Exchange, chanting "Robinhood has got to go," and "We want a free market". 

But the popular trading app’s survival might be threatened since investors could question the company's loyalty in preserving their portfolios and also get scared by the prospects of a potential liquidity crisis at the firm Citadel. 

Needless to say, traders, market watchers, and several high-profile figures were not happy with the way the brokerage firm handled the situation. Many online investors pointed out that in spite of what the statement says, the platform has actually removed their freedoms and silenced their voices, and the decision of limiting instead of blocking stocks was merely an attempt to avoid or restrain the damages of a potential liquidity crisis since millions of fees from flow would disappear if they kept these stocks blocked. Immediately after trading was resumed, GameStop stocks spiked 20%, and Koss stocks went up 40% after hours.

In contrast, shortly after several stocks started to soar again, traders began reporting that Robinhood was selling their GameStop shares without further notice. And the widespread constraint in share trading has continued to fuel the fury of several public figures on social media. Amongst them, Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the world's richest man Elon Musk, came together to criticize Robinhood and its peers. Cortez tweeted: "This is unacceptable. We now need to know more about @RobinhoodApp's decision to block retail investors from purchasing stock while hedge funds are freely able to trade the stock as they see fit. As a member of the Financial Services Committee, I'd support a hearing if necessary". Musk agreed with her take and also supported the opinion of another Twitter user who said: "Make shorting illegal".

In retaliation to the Reddit Rebellion and the enormous backlash on social media, Robinhood added more names to its restriction list, including American Airlines - which climbed over 70% at one point in pre-market trading - Alliance Data Systems, Castor Maritime, Sundial Growers, and several others. The most recent twist happened when Interactive Brokers joined Robinhood and put option trading in some names into liquidation.

If anything, this entire market battle has clearly exposed how the markets are structured to keep benefiting the establishment and crushing the average Americans' prospects of profiting in the financial system even when they play by the rules of the market. As this whole narrative seems far from ending, it seems that the only thing we can do is hope that regulating agencies finally find ways to reverse the outrageous restrictions on the free market. If they don't - we might be entering very dark times, where censorship and institutionalized crimes become the new normal." 

Musical Interlude: 2002, "We Meet Again"

2002, "We Meet Again"
Incredibly beautiful, full screen, please.

"A Look to the Heavens"

“What makes this spiral galaxy so long? Measuring over 700,000 light years across from top to bottom, NGC 6872, also known as the Condor galaxy, is one of the most elongated barred spiral galaxies known. 
The galaxy's protracted shape likely results from its continuing collision with the smaller galaxy IC 4970, visible just above center. Of particular interest is NGC 6872's spiral arm on the upper left, as pictured here, which exhibits an unusually high amount of blue star forming regions. The light we see today left these colliding giants before the days of the dinosaurs, about 300 million years ago. NGC 6872 is visible with a small telescope toward the constellation of the Peacock (Pavo).”

The Universe

“Believe me, I know all about it. I know the stress. I know the frustration. I know the temptations of time and space. We worked this out ahead of time. They're part of the plan. We knew this stuff might happen. Actually, you insisted they be triggered whenever you were ready to begin thinking thoughts you've never thought before. New thinking is always the answer.”
“Good on you,”
The Universe

“Thoughts become things... choose the good ones!”

Chet Raymo, “The (Unattainable) Thing Itself”

“The (Unattainable) Thing Itself”
by Chet Raymo

“Clear water in a brilliant bowl,
Pink and white carnations. The light
In the room more like a snowy air,
Reflecting snow. A newly-fallen snow
At the end of winter when afternoons return.
Pink and white carnations- one desires
So much more than that. The day itself
Is simplified: a bowl of white, 
Cold, a cold porcelain, low and round,
With nothing more than the carnations there.”

"Simplicity. Morning. Forty minutes till sunrise. Coffee. An English muffin. Sit on the terrace. The sky a deep violet. Then rose. Then gold. Simplicity. The senses fill to overbrimming, displacing thought. The moment is sweet and pure. Distilled. The shackles of conscience fall away. One simply is.

“Say even that this complete simplicity
Stripped one of all one's torments, concealed
The evilly compounded, vital I
And made it fresh in a world of white,
A world of clear water, brilliant-edged,
Still one would want more, one would need more,
More than a world of white and snowy scents.”

Now I wait with my eyes fixed on that place along the horizon where the Sun will rise. The sky itself holds its breath, anticipates the flash of green. I try, I try to empty myself, Zenlike, to become an empty vessel for nature to fill. A gathering vessel, brilliant edged. To exist entirely in the moment, outside of time, this moment, just now, now, as the disk of the Sun bubbles up on the sea horizon, that orb of of molten gold.

“There would still remain the never-resting mind,
So that one would want to escape, come back
To what had been so long composed.
The imperfect is our paradise.
Note that, in this bitterness, delight,
Since the imperfect is so hot in us,
Lies in flawed words and stubborn sounds.”

It's no use, of course. No way to obviate the conscious mind. Perhaps a Zen master might do it, a mystic in transport, a drunken sailor who walks into a lamppost. Even as the Sun's disk inflates, swells, unaccountably huge, the mind parses, frames, construes. I close my eyes to shut out thought and the words fill up the space behind my eyelids. The thing itself is out of reach, the moment adulterated by mind. The blessing of consciousness. And the curse."

(The three stanzas are Wallace Stevens' "The Poems of Our Climate.")

"Above All..."

"Above all, don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love. " 
- Fyodor Dostoevsky, "The Brothers Karamazov"

The Daily "Near You?"

Oakes, N. Dakota, USA. Thanks for stopping by!

The Poet: Mary Oliver, “October”


"There’s this shape, black as the entrance to a cave.
A longing wells up in its throat
like a blossom
as it breathes slowly.

What does the world
mean to you if you can’t trust it
to go on shining when you’re
not there? and there’s
a tree, long-fallen; once
the bees flew to it, like a procession
of messengers, and filled it
with honey.

I said to the chickadee, singing his heart out in the
green pine tree:
little dazzler
little song,
little mouthful.

The shape climbs up out of the curled grass. It
grunts into view. There is no measure
for the confidence at the bottom of its eyes-
there is no telling
the suppleness of its shoulders as it turns
and yawns.
Near the fallen tree
something- a leaf snapped loose
from the branch and fluttering down- tries to pull me
into its trap of attention.
It pulls me
into its trap of attention,
And when I turn again, the bear is gone.

Look, hasn’t my body already felt
like the body of a flower?
Look, I want to love this world
as thought it’s the last chance I’m ever going to get
to be alive
and know it.

Sometimes in late summer I won’t touch anything, not
the flowers, not the blackberries
brimming in the thickets; I won’t drink
from the pond; I won’t name the birds or the trees;
I won’t whisper my own name.

One morning
the fox came down the hill, glittering and confident,
and didn’t see me- and I thought:
so this is the world.
I’m not in it.
It is beautiful."

- Mary Oliver

"The Motive..."

"All men seek happiness. This is without exception. Whatever different means they employ, they all tend to this end. The cause of some going to war, and of others avoiding it, is the same desire in both, attended with different views. The will never takes the least step but to this object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those who hang themselves."
- Blaise Pascal

"Is The Reddit Rebellion About To Descend On The Precious Metals Market?"

"Is The Reddit Rebellion About To Descend 
On The Precious Metals Market?"
by Epic Economist

"Redditors seem to be at war against Wall Street traders. Analysts are pointing out that the young tech-savvy traders have just started a generational conflict that will likely spread across the globe, as European stock markets are already experiencing unusual fluctuations and, apparently, GameStop stocks were just the beginning. According to market watchers, the Reddit rebellion is about to descend on the precious metal markets, which could undoubtedly disrupt one of the most speculative markets of all and crush investors' gains while destroying some of the U.S. major banks. That's what we're going to investigate in this video. 

When the Reddit investors embarked on a stock-buying frenzy, leading demand to the roof and, consequently, pushing the price of stocks up, hedge fund investors were left in a really tight spot. Although numerous big Wall Street investors are rushing back to the market to limit their losses, the damages caused already led to the bankruptcy of Melvin Capital Management, which allegedly had to be bailed out with more than $ 2 billion to cover losses on some shares, including those of Gamestop.

For many online investors, it's not just about making money. They want blood. According to market analyst Neil Wilson, by reading the group's conversations on Reddit, it is clear that the battle of the Reddit traders with Wall Street is clearly personal. "It is a generational, redistributive battle. It is about stealing from the rich to give to the 'poor'," says Wilson.

Recent publications have been arguing that the Reddit Rebellion is migrating to one of the most manipulated markets of all: the precious metals market. Considering precious metals ETFs and mining stocks suddenly went up yesterday, the predictions appear to be accurate. A recent ZeroHedge article has exposed what one of the WallStreetBets users posted on the message board a couple of days ago. 

The message reads: "Silver Bullion Market is one of the most manipulated on earth. Any short squeeze in silver paper shorts would be epic. We know billion banks are manipulating gold and silver to cover real inflation. Both the industrial case and monetary case, debt printing has never been more favorable for the No. 1 inflation hedge Silver. Inflation-adjusted Silver should be at 1000$ instead of 25$. Why not squeeze $SLV to real physical price. Think about the gains. If you don't care about the gains, think about the banks like JP Morgan you'd be destroying along the way."

 ZeroHedge has also posted some charts showing that Silver is already spiking, and Gold is on an upward path too. But Argentum is the one that is going through the sharpest rise, which means that that the hedge fund investors' nightmare is far from being over. Meanwhile, a heated debate over the legitimacy of the Reddit Rebellion is taking over the mainstream media as well as social media as both the RobinHood platform and Reddit limited the actions of the group.

WallStreetBet’s discord was shut down allegedly for “hate speech”, and Robinhood has suspended new long positions in Gamestop, AMC and a few other junk stocks hedge funds were shorting. But many have been calling out the hypocrisy of the measures. Economy scholar Tom Woods noted that if the average American suffers a loss, that’s a darn shame. But if big players suffer a loss, everything is shut down. 

Overall, this whole narrative is indicative of how the financial system is rigged. When profits stayed inside the accounts of wealthy traders, no one complained about the fact they were betting and profiting on the decay of our businesses, but when a bunch of young rebels dare to question this manipulation, they're practically seen as criminals. The system is structured so that the public always loses, and the Establishment always wins, even if they have to change the rules or endlessly move the goalposts to do so. 

But one of the things WallStreetBets has done that might spark a change of winds inside the markets was exposing how investors' insanity and manic euphoria are completely unsustainable no matter on what side they are on. In a time when the U.S. economy keeps crumbling every day it passes, unemployment rates continue to climb, and 24 million Americans told Census Bureau interviewers that they’re having trouble getting enough to eat, keeping all eyes on a market play is clearly deviating the attention from our real problems. And we can't afford to do that." 

How It, Gleefully, Really Is"


"All There Is..."

"Angel: Well, I guess I kinda worked it out. If there's no great glorious end to all this, if nothing we do matters... then all that matters is what we do. 'Cause that's all there is. What we do. Now. Today. I fought for so long, for redemption, for a reward, and finally just to beat the other guy, but I never got it.

Kate Lockley: And now you do?

Angel: Not all of it. All I wanna do is help. I wanna help because, I don't think people should suffer as they do. Because, if there's no bigger meaning, then the smallest act of kindness is the greatest thing in the world.

Kate Lockley: Yikes. It sounds like you've had an epiphany.

Angel: I keep saying that, but nobody's listening."
"Angel", 2001

"Huxley vs. Orwell"

"Huxley vs. Orwell"
by Neil Postman

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one...

Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism... 

Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. 
Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance...

Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy...

As Huxley remarked in 'Brave New World Revisited', the civil libertarians and the rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny “failed to take into account man’s almost infinite appetite for distractions.” In '1984,' Huxley added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In 'Brave New World,' they are controlled by inflicting pleasure...In short, Orwell feared that what we hate will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we love will ruin us."

Huxley was quite obviously correct...

"The Web Gallery of Art"

"The Web Gallery of Art"

"The Web Gallery of Art is a virtual museum and searchable database of European painting and sculpture of the Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neoclassicism, Romanticism and Realism periods (1100-1850), currently containing over 50,500 reproductions. It was started in 1996 as a topical site of the Renaissance art, originated in the Italian city-states of the 14th century and spread to other countries in the 15th and 16th centuries. Intending to present Renaissance art as comprehensively as possible, the scope of the collection was later extended to show its Medieval roots as well as its evolution to Baroque and Rococo via Mannerism. More recently the periods of Neoclassicism and Romanticism were also included.
The collection has some of the characteristics of a virtual museum. The experience of the visitors is enhanced by guided tours helping to understand the artistic and historical relationship between different works and artists, by period music of choice in the background and a free postcard service. At the same time the collection serves the visitors' need for a site where various information on art, artists and history can be found together with corresponding pictorial illustrations. Although not a conventional one, the collection is a searchable database supplemented by a glossary containing articles on art terms, relevant historical events, personages, cities, museums and churches.

The Web Gallery of Art is intended to be a free resource of art history primarily for students and teachers. It is a private initiative not related to any museums or art institutions, and not supported financially by any state or corporate sponsors. However, we do our utmost, using authentic literature and advice from professionals, to ensure the quality and authenticity of the content.

We are convinced that such a collection of digital reproductions, containing a balanced mixture of interlinked visual and textual information, can serve multiple purposes. On one hand it can simply be a source of artistic enjoyment; a convenient alternative to visiting a distant museum, or an incentive to do just that. On the other hand, it can serve as a tool for public education both in schools and at home."

For those so inclined, this is a treasure trove of material. Enjoy!

"Never More Frightening...:

"Human beings are perhaps never more frightening than 
when they are convinced beyond doubt that they are right." 
~ Laurens van der Post

"Two Shocking Headlines That Sum Up Covid: Billionaires MADE $3.9 Trillion During The Pandemic, While Workers LOST $3.7 Trillion"

"Two Shocking Headlines That Sum Up Covid: Billionaires MADE $3.9 
Trillion During The Pandemic, While Workers LOST $3.7 Trillion"
by Damian Wilson

"The economic impact of Covid-19 on regular folk across the globe is as devastating as the physical toll it has taken, but we can’t just blame the super rich(er) for our woes – the true villains are much closer to home.

In a simple comparison, two headlines seem to say it all about the economic impact of the Covid-19 crisis: the first, from Business Insider, reads “Billionaires made $3.9 trillion during the pandemic” while the second, from The Guardian, shouts “Covid-19 has cost global workers $3.7 trillion in lost earnings.”

A classic case of robbing Peter to pay Paul, it would appear at first glance but of course, the world doesn’t work that way and the two ideas behind the headlines are not directly related, no matter what your bicycle-riding, woolly-sweater wearing, craft-beer-quaffing socialist pals might say.

But that doesn’t make the news any easier to swallow. Frankly, I couldn’t care less about the world’s billionaires, and maybe one day soon I won’t have to. They seem intent on moving to Mars in their big rockets where their whacked-out ideas and dreams of a super-race can become a problem for the little green men to deal with.

However, their surging wealth has become a headline writer’s dream. Added to those already cited, the BBC trumpets that the increase in wealth of the 10 richest men in the world during the pandemic would cover the cost of vaccinating every single person on the planet. It’s not fair! It’s just not fair!

But it is no use bleating about this. It’s our fault. Stuck at home while riding out this damned virus, we’ve been online around the clock, buying stuff we don’t need to have it delivered by Amazon, streaming hours and hours of online entertainment, addictively watching Tiktok and furiously messaging on social media, all activities that are unwittingly causing a boom in stock prices for all those global tech giants and their oddball owners – people like Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk and Bill Gates.

Not everyone is cashing in our boredom. Nope, there are serial investors out there who pre-pandemic already suffered from the condition of having way too much money at their disposal. People who share the outlook of 19th century American robber baron, John D. Rockefeller who admitted, “I always tried to turn every disaster into an opportunity.” Men like Warren Buffet, the so-called Sage of Omaha, who has made more than $20 billion since last March. Unfortunately, his good fortune comes not by selling anything the rest of the world can use – like free care homes for the elderly and vulnerable or a reliable Covid-19 vaccine that everyone clamors to buy – it’s through smart investment of his existing billions.

All this would be easy to shrug off – oh well, that’s just the way it is – if it wasn’t for the incredible tsunami-like impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had on our national economies and our everyday lives that can be seen with a cursory glance at the graphs and tables that chart such effects.

While we each come to terms with our own new normal, the collective overview is alarming. Every major economy is struggling with rising unemployment. Up 11 percent in Italy in 2020 compared with 2019. Nearly nine percent in the US and France. Some 5.4 per cent in the UK and 4.3 in the European powerhouse, Germany.

Across the globe, shoppers have vanished with retail footfall down 97 percent in Germany, 78 percent in the UK, 65 percent in France and Canada, and 20 percent in the USA, the biggest economy on the planet.

Global tourism has been crushed, with 2020 a total washout for everywhere from Thailand to Brazil to Italy and France. The airline industry? Devastated. This means millions of jobs lost, many of which may never return.

There is no need to go on. Unless you’re a billionaire, let’s face it, the figures suck. You can believe that as a result of the collapse in our economies, and the jobs that have followed down that big black hole, lost earnings from workers could quite easily total that estimated $3.7 trillion figure. You’d have to bet it will be even higher once the various government-backed furlough schemes and income support grants inevitably come to an end in countries like the UK.

It would be fun to paint the world’s billionaires as evil puppet masters bent on global domination and the development of a Mars-bound master race, sucking up the wages of the world’s workers so they can buy more rocket fuel and mansions built into mountains, but sadly the reality is far more prosaic.

All governments were caught criminally flat-footed by this pandemic and everyone has subsequently paid a terrible price. Years of complacency, cuts to public health budgets and dismissive approaches to warnings of a global pandemic are what got us where we are. The shambolic handling of the Covid-19 crisis cannot be blamed on crooked billionaires scheming away in their secret island hideaways, but can be laid at the feet of the very politicians that we ourselves elected, operating in plain sight. It is essential that we remember this the next time these true villains want something from us – like votes – or we risk this all happening again."

Friday, January 29, 2021

Musical Interlude: Peder B. Helland, "Warm Light"

Peder B. Helland, "Warm Light"
Please savor this exquisite work in full screen.

"Only Two Things..."

Must Watch! “Stock Market Is Rigged; Robinhood Selling Out Customers; Market Collapse Coming 2021 To Get Worse”

Jeremiah Babe,
“Stock Market Is Rigged; Robinhood Selling Out Customers;
 Market Collapse Coming 2021 To Get Worse”

"Hedge Fund Managers Need To Go to Jail"

Tucker Carlson,
"Hedge Fund Managers Need To Go to Jail"
"Barstool Sports Founder Dave Portnoy joins Tucker Carlson to discuss exactly what is happening between GameStop investors and the popular app Robinhood."

"David Beats Goliath"

"David Beats Goliath"
by Brian Maher

"We sense we are among unrealities... Joe Biden is president of the United States, Donald Trump was president of the United States… The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is famous… Washington and Lincoln are infamous... And a fifth-rate stock that trades for $17 on January 4 trades for $469 on January 28.

In what world could it come to pass? Surely the clocks run backward. Ice is aflame. The sun dawns in the west and dusks in the east. GameStop is a “brick-and-mortar” retailer of video games and related merchandise. Like many retailers, it confronts savage competition from digital rivals. Its business model is obsolete. Why visit the store when you can simply download your entertainment? The company is losing money. Yet its stock has gone skyshooting over 1,600% this month. Its chief executive officer is presently worth $1 billion… though he captains a sinking vessel.

You are likely aware of the mania at this point. Flush hedge funds had “shorted” GameStop stock, expecting to profit when its price dropped. But a collection of some five million day traders on a Reddit forum - WallStreetBets by name - tossed a spanner in the works. Most own accounts with small balances… generally under $5,000. They are, in the parlance of the trade, “newbies.” These saboteurs piled into GameStop stock in astounding volume. This mass purchasing sent the stock price galloping higher.

The short-selling hedge funds began hemorrhaging sweat. The higher the price jumped, the more money they would lose. We will not descend into the witchcraft of options trading. It can be complicated. And we are versed only in its merest rudiments. But this you must understand: When you short a stock, you must borrow it from a broker. You then sell it upon the open market. To exit your position at a later date, you must repurchase the stock… and return it to the broker. 

If the stock declines - as you had planned - you reap a profit. If the stock increases, you endure a loss. The higher the stock price, the more money you lose. You, therefore, prefer an early exit. You would rather lose some than lose much. But recall, you must repurchase the stock to exit your position. If many short-sellers purchase the stock, it pushes the stock higher still. Other short-sellers then capitulate… and exit their position… meaning they purchase more shares… pushing prices higher yet.

Now come back to GameStop… The small fry traders of WallStreetBets gobbled loads of GameStop stock. That, of course, placed upward pressure upon the price. The flummoxed hedge funds began exiting their short positions to avoid further losses. That is, they were forced to purchase GameStop stock.

Thus the stock price increased. The billiard balls were set in dizzying motion… more short-sellers being “squeezed” from their positions… the more stock they were forced to purchase… the higher the stock price. Before you know what has struck you, GameStop stock streaked from $17 to $469 within one month.

Impossible - but there you are. Thus the day trading minnows harpoon the mighty hedge fund whales. GameStop trades today at $323, not $469. It is plenty handsome nonetheless. WallStreetBets members reaped windfall fortunes. Many are now in clover… at least until they squander it all chasing the next rainbow. In all, they squeezed $20 billion from the short-sellers this month.

And so the gold rush is on… Some two million new members stampeded into WallStreetBets yesterday alone. Each seeks his fortune in the new wild west. Go long shorted stocks, young man.” Most will come to grief of course… prospectors plumbing dry river beds. Here you have the bubble psychology in all its fevered delirium, all its dizziness. How much longer it can rage we do not know.

Richard Fisher - former president of the Dallas Federal Reserve - is gravely concerned: "I think we've had a bubble for some time. This is just icing on the cake. When things get out of control like this, it is a sign that you should be very worried."

They have seen the rich get extremely rich by taking advantage of cheap money - and they want to get their piece as well. This is a sign that we are getting a blow-off top. What you're doing is throwing money out there - and hoping to find an idea. It's another indicator that money is too cheap.

But why, Mr. Fisher, is money too cheap? Perhaps because your former institution has pummeled it to nothing? A drug peddler gives away his narcotics in order to hook customers. It is the first intoxication for many. He hooks them. Before long they are addicted, bankrupted and ruined. He then scolds them for accepting his offer. Now you have the flavor of it. For now, the dealer still pushes his drugs… and many of his addicts are heading for the gutter…"

Gregory Mannarino, “Markets: Critical Updates! This Is A Set Up For Something Else. Be Ready”

Gregory Mannarino,
“Markets: Critical Updates! 
This Is A Set Up For Something Else. Be Ready”
CNN Fear And Greed Index:

"STOCK WARS! Reddit's WallStreetBets Spikes GameStop To Crush Hedge Fund Short Sellers"

"STOCK WARS! Reddit's WallStreetBets Spikes 
GameStop To Crush Hedge Fund Short Sellers"
by Peak Prosperity

"An epic David-vs-Goliath battle has erupted on Wall Street. And it may just change the future of investing, helping to tilt the playing field away from the huge unfair advantage the banking cartel has enjoyed for decades.

In case you've been sleeping under a rock for the past week: millions of individual investors have banded together using Reddit chat boards, Twitter and other forms of social media to wage concentrated attacks against large hedge funds who were recklessly (and possibly illegally) over-shorting the stocks of weak companies.

This has resulted in a series of "Infinite Short Squeezes" that has rocketed the prices of previously-troubled stocks like GameStop (GME) and AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC) by thousands of percent over the past two weeks, creating massive losses for the over-exposed hedge funds - a number of whom now find themselves at risk of insolvency from the damage.

Famed researcher Jim Bianco joins us this week to break down exactly what's going on here, which is a much bigger story than just the recent crazy price action. The Wall Street model is becoming disrupted by new technologies and an emerging collective 'people power' that threaten to strip the banking cartel of the unfair power it wields. And rather than lean into the change and evolve its model, the cartel is stubbornly resisting and instead trying to crush the agents of change.

We have seen this desperate denial from a dying regime many times throughout history, and it always ends the same. We only need look at how the taxi medallion cartel failed to stop the Uber/Lyft rideshare model for a recent example. Of course, this breakout of hostilities only adds to the volatility of a market tenuously holding on to the highest asset price valuations on record. Will the turbulence act as a catalyst to the massive correction more and more veteran experts are predicting?"

Musical Interlude: 2002, “Memory of the Sky”

2002, “Memory of the Sky”
Full screen highly recommended.

"A Look to the Heavens"

"Globular clusters once ruled the Milky Way. Back in the old days, back when our Galaxy first formed, perhaps thousands of globular clusters roamed our Galaxy. Today, there are less than 200 left. Many globular clusters were destroyed over the eons by repeated fateful encounters with each other or the Galactic center. Surviving relics are older than any Earth fossil, older than any other structures in our Galaxy, and limit the universe itself in raw age.
There are few, if any, young globular clusters in our Milky Way Galaxy because conditions are not ripe for more to form. Pictured above by the Hubble Space Telescope are about 100,000 of M72's stars. M72, which spans about 50 light years and lies about 50,000 light years away, can be seen with a small telescope toward the constellation of the Water Bearer (Aquarius).”

The Poet: Thomas Centolella, "Splendor"


One day it's the clouds,
one day the mountains.
One day the latest bloom of roses-
the pure monochromes, the dazzling hybrids-
inspiration for the cathedral's round windows.
Every now and then there's the splendor of thought:
the singular idea and its brilliant retinue-
words, cadence, point of view,
little gold arrows flitting between the lines.
And too the splendor of no thought at all:
hands lying calmly in the lap, 
or swinging a six iron with effortless tempo. 
More often than not splendor is the star we orbit
without a second thought,
especially as it arrives and departs. 
One day it's the blue glassy bay,
one day the night and its array of jewels,
visible and invisible.
Sometimes it's the warm clarity
of a face that finds your face
and doesn't turn away.
Sometimes a kindness, unexpected,
that will radiate farther than you might imagine.
One day it's the entire day itself,
each hour foregoing its number and name,
its cumbersome clothes, 
a day that says come as you are,
large enough for fear and doubt,
with room to spare: the most secret
wish, the deepest, the darkest,
turned inside out."

- Thomas Centolella

"You Can Avoid Reality..."


"The Truth"

"The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple."
- Oscar Wilde

"The Truth"
by Neal Ross

"In life there are certain things that are known as constants; things that never change. It takes the Earth 365 days to complete one orbit around the sun; that is a constant. In mathematics there are constants as well; one will always equal one is but one example. All things being equal, Newton’s Laws of Physics are also constants. But these are not the constants I would like to talk about; there is one other that I have yet to mention–the truth.

Simply defined, the truth is the state of things as they actually are. When one is called upon to be a witness in a courtroom they are asked to repeat the following, “Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?” Have you ever stopped to think about what that entails?

Let me begin by discussing the phrase, the whole truth. As the truth is a statement of things as they actually are, or were, by omitting certain relevant facts the truth can be altered and those hearing the testimony of the witness will form opinions based upon incomplete evidence. On the other end of the scale there is the phrase, and nothing but the truth. This requirement is so that the person testifying will not embellish their testimony with facts that are not relevant to the questions being asked of them, or add their opinions or beliefs into their testimony.

If a person under oath is found to have delivered a false testimony they can be charged with perjury; a criminal offense in and of itself. Again, simply stated, perjury is simply the violation of the oath to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

That is all well and good…in a courtroom where there are penalties for willfully telling things that are untrue, or incomplete versions of the truth. But what about in the courtroom of public opinion; how can we impose justice upon those who spew lies every time they open their mouths?

There is a scene in the film Apocalypse Now where Colonel Kurtz is talking to Captain Willard and he says, “There is nothing that I detest more than the stench of lies.” I couldn’t agree more; the problem is that whenever I hear people discuss history and politics they are repeating the lies that they have been taught or told by those whose job was to speak truthfully to them.

There is a quote from the 19th Century English novelist Isabella Blagden that forms the basis for a quote falsely attributed to Vladimir Lenin, “If a lie is only printed often enough, it becomes a quasi-truth, and if such a truth is repeated often enough, it becomes an article of belief, a dogma, and men will die for it.”

The problem, at least as I see it, is that once an opinion takes hold that is based upon lies, it is next to impossible to break people free from it so that they can embrace the truth. I have never claimed to be in possession of the whole truth; but I have made it my quest to seek out as much of it as I can find. One thing I’ve learned, and which is best stated by quoting Einstein, is, “The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don’t know.”

Remember now, the truth is a constant. If you may have noticed, I did not say what people pass off as the truth is constant; only the truth itself. Sometimes the truth takes a little digging to expose; sometimes it takes a lot of digging before you find it. But you owe it to yourself to at least make the effort to seek it out; that is of course unless you are content to live your life repeating the lies that have been spoon fed to you by everyone from your school teachers to those you have placed your faith and trust in to run this country according to the Constitution and their oaths to support and defend it.

There is something else you need to know about the truth, it does not care if you seek it out, or if you ignore it; it has no feelings; it simply exists as the state of things in their true nature. The truth will always be there; whether anyone chooses to look for it or not. There is one final thing you also need to understand about the truth; that being that it is useless unless it is put to use. As von Goethe so aptly states, “Knowing is not enough, we must apply.” You might know the truth, but if you haven’t changed your opinions or beliefs to be in accordance to the facts, what good is the knowledge you’ve obtained?

When a nation, or a people have been lied to for generations, and the lies have been compounded over time, then people often find it hard to accept the truth; let alone speak it those who have fallen for the lies they have been taught.

In psychological study there is a term called Cognitive Dissonance; one of the definitions of it being the reaction to, or stress caused when one is exposed to the truth that conflicts with existing beliefs. I’m no psychologist, but I believe Cognitive Dissonance is directly proportional to the magnitude of the lie people have been told; the bigger the lie the more stress the truth causes when one finally encounters it. I also believe that some would rather just ignore the truth rather than deal with the hassle of changing their beliefs because they were based upon lies. That is simple human nature; to take the easiest path possible. In a way, it’s just like Churchill said, “Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most pick themselves up as if nothing happened.”

But throughout history there have always been those who sought out the truth, and once they found it they proclaimed it loudly; and were condemned for it. Galileo was charged with heresy for claiming the Earth revolved around the sun, not the other way around. More recently, Edward Snowden exposed the truth to the people of the world that America’s government was routinely spying on them, and for his exposing the truth he was forced into exile.

When the lie has taken hold, it becomes the truth people base their opinions upon. It therefore becomes very difficult to find ways for people to accept that they have been lied to about almost everything they were taught about the history and system of government of this country. Those who speak the truth to them find themselves ignored, ridiculed, and often accused of being dangers to society because what they speak goes against what is commonly accepted as the truth. But remember, the truth itself is constant, not what you believe is the truth. It is as Orwell said, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

Now you may be asking yourselves, “Why did Neal just spend two pages rambling on about the truth?” Well it’s quite simple actually; it is because I would now like to discuss certain truths; things which you may not have known, or given much thought to.

After nearly a century and a half of seeing their rights ignored and violated by their government, many of the Colonists of America decided they would be better off severing the ties which bound them to said government. Delegates to a convention to deal with these violations of their rights chose a young man, Thomas Jefferson, to draft a document declaring the Colonies independence from British rule.

Jefferson could very easily have said something along the lines of, “We, the Colonies of British America do hereby declare our independence, and here are our reasons why…” Instead Jefferson chose to make a statement about the nature of the rights of all men and the relationship between those who are governed and those who govern. The Declaration of Independence can rightfully be said to be the document which gave birth to America; and upon it any system of government owes its existence to.

The version of the Declaration of Independence we are all familiar with begins with the following words, “We hold these truths to be self-evident…” There is that word again; truth. The revised edition of the Declaration of Independence declares that they are self-evident.

Oh, you didn’t know that the copy you may have read is not Jefferson’s original draft? Well it isn’t. Jefferson brought his original draft to the Committee of Five, who edited it down and changed the wording; sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worst. In his original draft, Jefferson states, “We hold these truths to be sacred & undeniable…“

Self-evident merely means that the thing being espoused needs no explanation; everyone understands it to be true. Sacred and undeniable is something else altogether, as it implies that these truths come from a higher authority than man.

There is something else you need to realize about Jefferson’s opening words. If you’ll notice, he did not say this truth, he said these truths; meaning there was more than one truth he was about to discuss.

The first of these truths is that all men are created equal and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; among them being the right to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Now as truths do not change over the course of time, (remember they are constant), what Jefferson states does not change just because situations and political climates change. Our rights, as described by Jefferson are the same now as they were when he first put quill to parchment.

I have spoken of this before, but it is important that I make clear the meaning of unalienable. Unalienable means that something cannot be sold, transferred or taken away. Therefore, if our rights are unalienable, no government, no politically correct society can deprive a single individual of them. For as you recall Jefferson said that ALL MEN are created equal and possess these rights. Just because a portion of society does not like that another portion exercises a right they find offensive, that does not entitle them to deprive anyone the freedom to exercise that right.

Now let’s talk a moment about equality; shall we? Jefferson merely states that all men are created equal and equally all men have these rights. But he also says that one of these rights is the PURSUIT of happiness. He does not say the guarantee of happiness, only that we have the freedom to seek it. Today people are of the belief that society owes people happiness and success; and that if people are unable to obtain these things on their own, then government should provide it for them; unfortunately, this usually comes at the expense of others.

Forty years after Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence, he spoke of this principle in a letter to Joseph Milligan, stating, “To take from one, because it is thought his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise of his industry and the fruits acquired by it.“

As the principle is that all men are created equal and are guaranteed to right to PURSUE happiness, then any belief that declares that society owes people happiness or success MUST be founded upon a lie; as they have no factual basis in what our Founders believed at the time our country came into existence.

The next truth Jefferson discusses is in regard to the fact that governments exist to secure these rights, and that government derives its authority from the consent of the governed. It is a legal maxim that those holding delegated power cannot have more power than those who originally delegated that power to them.

Whether the Constitution was written in secrecy and ratified by fraud is not relevant; as I am going on the presumption that the Constitution was written with the best of intentions, and ratified in a manner that was above board and without deceit.

The Constitution is that delegated power that I speak of; it was the consent of the governed to establish a government to serve those it was to represent, and to secure the rights for which it was established. That Constitution declares that it is the Supreme Law of the Land, and that all laws passed in pursuance of it are also the Supreme Law of the Land. But what about the laws our government passes which are not authorized by the Constitution; what would you call them?

I can only tell you what our Founders would say; they would call it tyranny. In "Federalist 47" James Madison tells the people of New York, “The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.”

Now if you think about that, can you not come to the conclusion that Madison would have believed that the power being held was based upon political party ideology, rather than the confines of the Constitution, would be an apt definition of tyranny? I certainly do.

In the very next edition of the Federalist, Madison goes on to say, “It will not be denied that power is of an encroaching nature and that it ought to be effectually restrained from passing the limits assigned to it.” And where, may I be so bold to ask, are those limits found? Why, they are found in the Constitution. And if the people do not know what the Constitution says, and vote for people based upon what their respective political parties declare to be their platforms, cannot it be said that the people are voting based upon lies; not the truth?

Yet Jefferson was a wise man, he knew that governments could, over time, become tyrannical and oppressive; so he included in the Declaration of Independence a remedy; another truth we have forgotten; “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

Now this is where it gets a bit tricky. Back when our Constitution was written, each State was sovereign and independent from the others; each with their own government to regulate the internal affairs of the States. The government established by the Constitution was to represent the States and the people; not just the people, like it does today. That didn’t occur, officially at least, until 1913 when the 17th Amendment was supposedly ratified.

So the question is, did the Constitution leave the States as sovereign and independent entities, or did it forge a permanent Union, or a consolidation of the States into the entity known as the United States of America; to which they were forever bound?

The answer to that is found in the Declaration of Independence where Jefferson states, “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government…” If the government established by the Constitution became oppressive to one portion of the country, which then benefitted another segment of the country, can it be expected that the segment being subjugated and oppressed must remain in a union that was destructive of the ends for which government was established?

If your answer is yes, then you cannot, in all honesty, state that you believe the Founders were justified in seeking independence from English rule. Using your logic, the Colonies had no right whatsoever to leave the British Empire, or declare themselves free of British rule.

But, if you believe the Colonists were justified in breaking all ties with England, then how can you deny that any portion of the Union of sovereign and independent States could not do the same when the government established by all became oppressive to a portion of the country?

In the book “Atlas Shrugged”, author Ayn Rand writes, “Contradictions do not exist. Whenever you think that you are facing a contradiction, check your premises. You will find that one of them is wrong.” Therefore, if you support the right of the Colonists to sever all ties with England, you must support the belief that any portion of the United States reserved the right to resume their status free from the rule of the government they all had established.

In fact, this fact was attested to when Virginia ratified the Constitution, “We the Delegates of the People of Virginia duly elected in pursuance of a recommendation from the General Assembly and now met in Convention having fully and freely investigated and discussed the proceedings of the Federal Convention and being prepared as well as the most mature deliberation hath enabled us to decide thereon Do in the name and in behalf of the People of Virginia declare and make known that the powers granted under the Constitution being derived from the People of the United States may be resumed by them whensoever the same shall be perverted to their injury or oppression and that every power not granted thereby remains with them and at their will …” (My emphasis)

At the onset of, what you call the Civil War, if the North chose to remain in the Union, that was their choice; but neither they, nor the government established by the Constitution had any legal authority to perpetually bind any State to a Union which was detrimental to their internal well being. You see, what you call the Civil War was not a civil war, as a civil war is a war in which two entities seek control over the system of governance over the whole. That was not the case in 1861; one segment merely sought to sever the ties which bound them to a voluntary Union of States and form their own system of government which would best suit their needs.

It doesn’t matter what their reasons were for leaving the Union, they retained the right to do so whether it was over slavery, tariffs, or a combination of the two; and the central government was not endowed with the authority to force them into staying.

In 1783 when the Treaty of Paris was agreed to, those who had fought for liberty and independence won. However, in 1865 when Lee surrendered at Appomattox, those who had fought for liberty and independence lost. The Civil War was, in fact, America’s Second War for Independence, and this time the outcome affected us all.

The South Was Right: The outcome of the Civil War was that the government established by consent of the people could override the will of the people, or a portion of the people, and exercise exclusive domain and authority; it ended the concept of the States being free and independent entities and finalized the consolidation of them all into the entity we now call the United States of America.

The fact that we have been lied to by our educators about the Civil War, and what it was really fought over, and the fact that we have been lied to about the subsequent subjugation of the South known as Reconstruction, has produced entire generations that have had the truth hidden from them.

That is why I provided the quote from Blagden, the one which said, “If a lie is only printed often enough, it becomes a quasi-truth, and if such a truth is repeated often enough, it becomes an article of belief, a dogma, and men will die for it.” That is why so many have come out and openly spoke out of how anything about the Confederacy is racist and offensive; because they have come to believe the lie; it has become their dogma. I don’t know if they are willing to die defending their beliefs, but if they don’t stop pushing they are certainly going to be put to the test.”