Wednesday, August 22, 2012


How much is a Million?

How much is a Billion?

How much is a Trillion?

What's the difference between a million, a billion, a trillion?A million seconds is 12 days.
A billion seconds is 31 years.
A trillion seconds is 31,688 years.

A million minutes ago was – 1 year, 329 days, 10 hours and 40 minutes ago.
A billion minutes ago was just after the time of Christ.

A million hours ago was in 1885.
A billion hours ago man had not yet walked on earth.

A million dollars ago was five (5) seconds ago at the U.S. Treasury.
A billion dollars ago was late yesterday afternoon at the U.S. Treasury.
[Note: this was pre-Obama]

A trillion dollars is so large a number that only politicians
can use the term in conversation... probably because they
seldom think about what they are really saying. I've read that
mathematicians do not even use the term trillion!
Here is some perspective on TRILLION:
 Trillion = 1,000,000,000,000.
The country has not existed for a trillion seconds.
Western civilization has not been around a trillion seconds.
One trillion seconds ago – 31,688 years – Neanderthals stalked the plains of Europe.

Million: 1,000,000
Billion: 1,000,000,000
Trillion: 1,000,000,000,000
Quintillion: 1,000,000,000,000,000,000
Sextillion: 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000
Nonillion: 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000
Centillion: 1 followed by 303 zeros

What does one TRILLION dollars look like?

billion dollars...
hundred billion dollars...
Eight hundred billion dollars...
One TRILLION dollars...
What does that look like? I mean, these various numbers are tossed around like so many doggie treats, so I thought I'd take Google Sketchup out for a test drive and try to get a sense of what exactly a trillion dollars looks like.
We'll start with a $100 dollar bill. Currently the largest U.S. denomination in general circulation. Most everyone has seen them, slighty fewer have owned them. Guaranteed to make friends wherever they go.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Bankers contrary lending

It was business as usual at the U.S. Export-Import Bank Sept. 30, though its charter was set to expire at midnight. The board approved $1.2 billion in loan guarantees to help Air India Ltd. buy jetliners from Boeing Co. (BA), part of $3.4 billion in financing it handled that day.
Why worry? The bank had been around since the New Deal, helping U.S. businesses compete in the international marketplace. Its periodic reauthorization had been a matter of routine. Committees in both chambers of Congress had stamped their overwhelming approval on bills to renew the charter.
The Export-Import Bank has been around since the New Deal, helping U.S. businesses compete in the international marketplace. Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg
Chart: Countdown to Export-Import Reauthorization
Chart: Key Players in the Ex-Im Bank Dispute
All of that was about to change. The loan guarantee to Air India angered Delta Air Lines Inc. (DAL) and other U.S. carriers just as resentment of the bank as a government meddler in business exploded into opposition by anti-tax Tea Party-aligned Republicans.
For months, the bank’s survival was in doubt while supporters such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, caught off guard, warred against Delta, the Club for Growth and the libertarianCato Institute. A bipartisan compromise saved the institution when the Senate voted 78-20 May 15 to adopt a deal negotiated in the House to extend the lender’s charter for three years and increase its lending limit to $140 billion.
Business groups that supported reauthorization “made their voices heard on Capitol Hill,” Ex-Im Chairman and President Fred P. Hochberg said in an interview after the Senate vote.
That there was a fight at all amazed the bank’s backers.

Agency Creates Jobs

“We’ve got an agency that creates jobs, does it at no cost to the taxpayer, generates and has delivered $1.9 billion to the Treasury over the last five years,” according to Hochberg, who counts President Barack Obama and some of the country’s most influential industry groups among his allies.
“It’s hard for me to fully understand what the debate is,” Hochberg said in an April interview from his office overlooking the White House across leafy Lafayette Square.
The story of how the Ex-Im Bank, for decades a fairly invisible cog in the bureaucratic machinery, was almost put out of business is a case study in the politics of Washington, where Congress has been paralyzed over fundamental issues about the scope and role of government.
Since it was founded in 1934, the bank has been reauthorized every few years with little or no debate, most recently in 2006 without so much as a request for a roll call vote in either chamber.

Sign of Trouble

A sign of trouble in Congress came in December, when some Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee objected to a plan to reauthorize the bank for four years and raise its lending cap by 35 percent to $135 billion. House leaders considered making the Ex-Im measure part of an omnibus year-end spending bill.
Representative Scott Garrett of New Jersey said he and other Republicans argued successfully to drop the measure from the spending bill.
That left the bank vulnerable to a stand-alone vote and the onslaught that ensued. Garrett said in an interview that that was just what the insurgents, their numbers swelled by Tea Party freshmen, wanted.
“We’ve never actively been fighting the Ex-Im Bank like we did this time,” said Andrew Roth, vice president of government affairs for the Club for Growth, a Washington-based organization that favors smaller government.
Opposition to federal intervention in the economy by the Tea Party movement in 2010 had given the club’s limited- government mantra more attention in Congress. The group alerted lawmakers on Jan. 31 that it would watch how they voted on the bank’s reauthorization.

‘Pumping Out E-Mails’

“Thereafter, we were pumping out e-mails to the hill -- two, three, four times a week,” asserting that the bank’s lending had supported a rogue’s gallery of beneficiaries including Solyndra LLC, Roth said.
While the bank provided a loan guarantee to a Belgian bank that supported the purchase of Solyndra’s solar panels, the U.S. lender wasn’t exposed to Solyndra directly, according to an Ex- Im fact sheet published in April.
Obama, who has set a goal of doubling U.S. exports by the end of 2014, weighed in. He endorsed the bank in a Feb. 17 speech at a Boeing plant in Everett, Washington. Ex-Im will give “American companies a fair shot by matching the unfair export financing that their competitors receive from other countries,” Obama said.

Heritage Foundation

Groups long opposed to the bank, including the Heritage Foundation and Cato Institute, joined the fray. Their message resonated with some members of Congress, such as Senator Jim DeMint, a South Carolina Republican and founder of the Senate Tea Party caucus.
“It’s not like it was 10 years ago: We are actually guaranteeing loans to companies that are part of governments that are being downgraded,” said DeMint, who led much of the opposition.
In mid-March, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor circulated a plan to reauthorize the bank for a year, with a 13 percent increase in its lending limit. The rank and file balked.
“I remember that being the moment when leadership realized that conservatives would actively fight against this,” Roth said.
U.S. carriers led by Delta had filed a legal challenge to the bank, alleging in a Nov. 16 lawsuit that its support for airlines outside the U.S., including Air India, may provide an unfair boost to competitors.

‘Negative Impact’

The Ex-Im Bank “routinely fails to evaluate the negative impact that its commitments have on domestic industries,” an industry group, Airlines for America, said in the lawsuit. The bank disputes the claims in the case, pending in a federal court in Washington, D.C.
Sensing an opportunity in Congress, the airlines opened a fresh front. They had just the guy to lead the charge.
Richard Anderson, 57-year-old chief executive officer of Delta, had a reputation as a maverick and the platform to make a case. He is chairman of Airlines for America, which spent $1.13 million on lobbying in the first three months of 2012, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a non-partisan campaign finance watchdog group.
Along with other airlines that depend on profitable overseas routes, Delta had reason to worry about competitors such as Air India and Dubai’s Emirates Airline buying Boeing wide-body jets with Ex-Im financing to expand their trans- Atlantic business.

Chamber of Commerce

In April, Anderson said in a speech to the Chamber of Commerce, an ally of the bank, that Ex-Im financing let overseas rivals pay $1 million a year in interest payments per plane, compared with the $4 million annually Delta pays.
“We wouldn’t be raising the Ex-Im Bank issue if it didn’t really hurt us, and it does,” he said.
Delta spent $667,604 in lobbying during the first three months of 2012, on top of $2.5 million last year, federal records show. Its lobbying efforts are led by Andrea Newman, a campaign donor to Cantor, a Virginia Republican.
Also working on behalf of the airline are Fierce, Isakowitz & Blalock, a lobbying firm that employs several former aides to Republican Senators Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and Elmendorf Ryan LLC, a Democratic lobbying firm, disclosure records show. By early 2012 the Breaux Lott Leadership Group, another firm on Delta’s payroll, focused on Ex-Im.

‘Much More Vocal’

The bank and its supporters were surprised by the aggressive efforts. Opponents of the lender “were much more vocal than we expected them to be,” said Christopher Wenk, senior director for international policy at the Chamber of Commerce, the nation’s largest business group.
The chamber last year spent $66.4 million on lobbying, more than any other industry group in Washington, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. In recent years, it has focused on other battles including TransCanada Corp. (TRP)’s Keystone XL pipeline.
With members including Ex-Im beneficiaries Boeing, General Electric Co. (GE) and other companies doing business overseas, the Chamber of Commerce turned its attention to keeping the lender alive.
“We really upped our game on Ex-Im” after the first of the year, Wenk said.
Other lobbying organizations put their machines into overdrive. The focus: jobs, the same argument airlines were using on the other side.

Boeing Hires Firms

The National Association of Manufacturers, based in Washington, and the Aerospace Industries Association, based in Arlington, Virginia, set up meetings between lawmakers and manufacturers who rely on Ex-Im financing.
Lobbyists for Boeing, the largest recipient of Ex-Im support, took to Capitol Hill armed with statistics of the jobs that depend on Ex-Im financing. The airplane and defense giant, which spent $4.1 million on advocacy during the first three months of 2012, paid nine firms to help make the case, Senate lobbying records show.
Some Republicans were unswayed.
“I realized that we had an entity that was handing out huge subsidies that benefit only about 10 major companies,” said Justin Amash, a Michigan freshman, who proposed legislation to abolish the bank. He campaigned on a pledge to “end corporate welfare.”
The bank used its annual meeting on April 12, held at the Omni Shoreham Hotel on the edge of Washington’s Rock Creek Park, to push back.

President Clinton

Hundreds of business people -- from as far away as India an Nigeria, many interested in buying U.S. goods -- crammed into the hotel’s cavernous basement ballroom. Ex-Im Bank’s Hochberg led what resembled a pep rally for reauthorization. The crowd rose and applauded as former President Bill Clinton took the stage.
“Whether you are Republicans, Democrats or independents, I urge you to ask the Congress to reauthorize” the bank, Clinton said.
Supporters were soon using military-style language in their appeal. “To unilaterally surrender and do away with the bank because of an ideological position, and the whole world has their own version of the Ex-Im bank, is not smart to me,” Graham said. The senator is from South Carolina, where Boeing has a manufacturing plant for its 787 aircraft.

Deal Struck

With business leaders expressing shock at the opposition from generally pro-business Republicans, Hoyer, the No. 2 Democrat in the House and an aide to Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, met privately with Cantor to negotiate a solution. The lawmakers worked through their recess in early May and, at 7 p.m. Friday, May 4, Hoyer of Maryland announced a compromise. It passed the House five days later by 330-93, with all the “nays” coming from Republicans.
The legislation is a “first step” to increase transparency in bank transactions and phase out government subsidies for wide-body aircraft, Delta spokesman Trebor Banstetter said in a statement.
While the bank survived, its days of routinely winning reauthorization may be over.
Republicans missed an opportunity to eliminate a government entity and make their case that the president’s policies promote “crony capitalism,” said Dan Holler, Heritage Action’s communications director. Still, he said, they laid the groundwork for more scrutiny of the bank when its charter is next due for renewal.
“What you’re seeing is a fundamental change where members of Congress, especially conservatives, aren’t afraid to debate these issues anymore,” Holler said. “The supporters of the bank are going to have a lot harder time justifying its existence, given all the pressure that was put on reauthorization this time around.”
To contact the reporters on this story: Brian Wingfield in Washington; Kathleen Hunter in Washington at
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jodi Schneider; Jon Morgan at; Clark Hoyt

Monday, August 20, 2012

Lock In Free Speech

Battling Threat to Free Speech

The 1st Amendment right to free speech is at risk.  Other countries do NOT have that protection (Canada is an example), and have many rules/laws in place that limit their citizens’ ability to express themselves, without severe financial and criminal consequences.
As a result, many people have come to see these limitations as the norm.  Speech or writing that “demeans” many protected groups (non-white, gay, women, etc.) is forbidden.  The speaker/writer may be sued for engaging in such expression.
In addition to these groups, another special interest has been given the right to be free from criticism – Muslims.  It has been interpreted so that CORRECTLY quoting the Koran or other Muslim writings may lead to a court trial – which may involve penalties including fines and jail time.
Jail time?  Yes.  For expressing oneself on topics freely – and that DOESN’T involve anything but the truth.
There are people who are trying to extend Resolution 16/18, which makes it a CRIME to:
limit speech that is viewed as “discriminatory” or which involves the “defamation of religion” – specifically that which can be viewed as “incitement to imminent violence.”
The religion that this resolution is concerned about – well, it ISN’T Christianity or Judaism.
It is Islam.
Pay attention to that phrase “incitement to imminent violence”.  Well, who could be against speech so hateful that listeners are impelled to commit violent acts?
Me, for starters.
We are NOT talking about untruthful speech – adequate remedies exist for that.
We are talking about speech that some object to – the very same type of speech that the 1st Amendment was designed to protect.
So, under this resolution, all that has to happen to negate your 1st Amendment rights is for someone to object to it – and threaten violent actions.  This is a resolution that Obama’s State Dept. was actively involved in passing.  Those that were involved point out that the resolution was watered down in the process.
That’s no consolation – this time, the fanatics didn’t have all the votes.  Wait until the effects of this resolution take effect, and opposition is silenced.  In time, it will begin to seem inadequate to stop dissent.
Then, stronger measures will be imposed.
One way that the Anti-Free-Speech (AFS) crowd tries to shut down dissent is to file frivolous lawsuits against the publishers of that speech.  The lawsuit doesn’t have to have merit to cost the publishers quite a bit of money – which is NOT reimbursed once the claim is found to be without merit.  These are called SLAPP suits.
Senator John Kyl (R-AZ) has sponsored legislation that addresses this issue – and provides an appropriate response.  The bill:
Most of the text below (bill S. 3493, obtained through is written in dense legalese, but the first five or six paragraphs will give the reader an idea of what he aims to accomplish.
The purpose is to give the target of a frivolous lawsuit an opportunity to move for summary dismissal. Such a motion will force the plaintiff filing the suit to demonstrate that his action is substantive and not frivolous. If he fails to do so, the suit will be dismissed and the plaintiff required to pay the defendant’s costs.
Note that last, boldfaced part.  It takes away one common reason for folding in the face of threats – that the money one spends on lawyers outweighs the satisfaction of winning.
Please, contact your senator, and urge them to support this bill.  Later on, when the bill is brought up in the House, I’ll be back to let you know, and urge that you contact your representative.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Print Money, Mint Money. Fiat Money, Spend Money, etc

For me the banking and economic system seems to have gone along way from principles like Charles Dickens "Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six, result misery."
Charles DickensDavid Copperfield, 1849

By: Devvy
August 1, 2012
This is the second installment in critical bills that need to get introduced in your state legislature this coming January. As I pointed out in my last column, bills have to be written by Thanksgiving for distribution to committees. If you wait until January or February, it will be way too late.
Dr. Vieira asked in a February 2012, presentation: "If the Federal Reserve System collapses in hyperinflation in the near future, exactly what will the State and her citizens then use as their currency?"
At this point in time, nothing, because not one state in this Union is prepared for the inevitable.
While many Americans do understand the problem with fiat currency and the "Fed", I would guess a hundred million don't and neither do enough members of the 50 state legislatures or they would have addressed this massive problem years ago. So, it is up to you to get this information to your state representative and get a commitment to introduce a bill in January. Better if you can do it as a group like tea party or 9-12 chapters. But, it takes boots on the ground and effort. I have already mailed my package for the bill challenging ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment. Have you? If we do nothing, how can we expect to get critical issues addressed and solutions implemented?
If people thought what began in 2007 and finally blew a fuse in 2008 was bad, they haven't seen the worst of it...yet. Remember: those who have worked hard and accumulated wealth are the ones (just like little businesses) who create the jobs. When they lose their fortunes, you will see many more businesses go under. Since 2008, some 220,000 small business have gone belly up. All of this does affect the states of the Union in higher unemployment, Medicaid, welfare and crime.
"Faber stated, “I think somewhere down the line we will have a massive wealth destruction. That usually happens either through very high inflation or through social unrest or through war or credit-market collapse.”
“I would say that well-to-do people may lose up to 50 percent of their total wealth.”
"Faber points out that this bleak outlook for the United States has been caused by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve's continuous printing of new money.
"He says that the bailout and money printing will not create any long-lasting wealth or create healthy growth, and that the collapse will come on Bernanke’s watch."
"According to CEO and Chief Global Strategist of Euro Pacific Capital Peter Schiff, the U.S. economy is heading for an economic crash that will make 2008 look like a walk in the park. Stimulus programs can delay this day of reckoning, but only for so long and only at the expense of making the eventual meltdown much, much worse.
"Schiff, who famously warned investors about the housing and financial crisis in his 2007 book Crash Proof, says the Fed's palliative efforts during the housing meltdown have made the next crisis inevitable.
"We've got a much bigger collapse coming, and not just of the markets but of the economy," Schiff says in the attached clip. "It's like what you're seeing in Europe right now, only worse."
"In this nightmare scenario detailed in The Real Crash: America's Coming Bankruptcy, the current economic pause is actually the beginning of a material slowdown or recession into year end. At that point, the Federal Reserve will unleash a third round of Quantitative Easing — weakening the dollar without jump-starting the economy. As a result of dollar weakness, import prices rise, pressing the margins of corporate America. Lower margins lead to heavy layoffs, sending millions of workers into unemployment during a time when they can least afford it. Banks fail, housing collapses, and taxes are raised in a futile effort to give the tapped-out government the capital to try yet more futile stimulus.
"That's when it really is going to get interesting, because that's when we hit our real fiscal cliff, when we're going to have to slash — and I mean slash — government spending," says Schiff.
"Those cuts will not be at all unlike the draconian austerity measures in Greece, with programs like Social Security and Medicare being dramatically cut or possibly disappearing entirely. The easiest way to put it, is that everything you don't think could possibly happen in America will come to be."
"Anyone who thinks the U.S. is in recovery should stop listening to the mainstream media and listen to John Williams. He heads up, and is one of the few economists who crunches the numbers to give unvarnished true statistics. Adjusted for real inflation of about 7%, Williams says, “GDP has plunged, and we have been bottom bouncing” ever since the financial crisis started. Williams says, “The next crash will be a lot worse (than 2008) because it will push us into the early stages of hyperinflation.” He predicts this will happen “by the end of 2014– at the latest.” Long before 2014, thinks there is a good chance of “panic selling of the U.S. dollar,” if the Federal Reserve starts another round of money printing (QE3) to save the system and the big banks.
"No matter what Williams predicts, “There will eventually be a crisis to bring the system down as we know it. . . . We’re on the brink.” According to Williams, “at some point, you will see a new currency in the U.S.” The founder of sat down for a one on one interview with Greg Hunter to talk about the mathematical certainty of a systemic collapse in the not-so-distant future."
The individuals above are no light weights and people had better listen to what they're saying. State legislators had better wake up and smell the disaster about to hit the state houses like a tsunami. That's why this bill is so important.
For this bill, you need a cover letter if you (or a group you're affiliated with) can't meet with your state rep personally. No email. What should you put in this package?
1. The Working Paper. As I explained in the first installment, a working paper is to demonstrate to your state representative the need for a bill and why it benefits the state and her citizens.
2. Print out Dr. Edwin Vieira's nine page presentation for a bill in Montanaand include it with the working paper. That document will show your state representative that other states are at least making some effort. I can tell you that the biggest problem besides ignorance on the part of state legislators is party politics. In all their stupidity, I have watched 'sound money bills' get killed by one party or the other ignoring the consequences of their actions.
3. Print out the South Carolina bill I included in the Working Paper. While that bill is far from being perfect, it is a start.
4. This model piece of legislation Dr. Vieira wrote for the states and included in his two volume work, Pieces of Eight: The Monetary Powers and Disabilities of the United States Constitution (2002), the most comprehensive study in existence of American monetary law and history viewed from a constitutional perspective. Print it out for your package.
5. There are three other documents that need to be put on a CD and included in your package. They are too long to print out, but anyone who reads them (like your state representative) will fully understand the problem, how perilous the situation is and hopefully, move them to get a bill written and introduced.
They are:
Corportivism in Money and Banking Has Led America to Fascism - Address to the Annual Spring Meeting of the Committee for Monetary Research & Education, Union League Club, New York City, May 17, 2012
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Millions of Americans have been broad sided by what began in 2008 and will only continue to get worse. The Outlaw Congress absolutely refuses to take corrective action. Look at what has happened with the bill just to audit the privately owned "Federal" Reserve. It's taken years to get the bill passed by the house, but Harry Reid isn't going to allow it to get passed in the Senate. Rep. Ron Paul's bill in 2007, to absolish the unconstitutional "Federal" Reserve didn't get a single sponsor. In the meantime, we have all paid the price.
The consequences to all of us if the states don't take action on this issue is horrendous.

Devvy Kidd authored the booklets, Why A Bankrupt America and Blind Loyalty; 2 million copies sold. Devvy appears on radio shows all over the country. She left the Republican Party in 1996 and has been an independent voter ever since. Devvy isn't left, right or in the middle; she is a constitutionalist who believes in the supreme law of the land, not some political party.
Devvy's regularly posted new columns are on her site at: You can also sign up for her free email alerts.

Friday, August 3, 2012

purloined taxpayers money under who's command ? ?

Is this is what happened to the money??
So does this answer where the blame should lie??
So was GW Bush just a lame duck President and scape-goat??

By Jon Christian RyterAugust 1, 2012
Neil Barofsky, a lifetime Democrat, was picked by then-President George W. Bush (on the advise of his Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson) to police how the banks spent the $700 billion in TARP economic stimulus funds that should have helped the United States avert the recession that all Americans now suffer under. Testifying before the Senate Finance Committee on April 20, 2010, Barofsky said: "To declare TARP a success is revisionist history. TARP was supposed to restore lending, and that didn't happen."
TARP, according to the political rhetoric, was supposed to buy up the foreclosed mortgages that were strangling credit and bankrupting both small business entrepreneurs and working class stiffs who were impacted by the lack of financial liquidity in the United States that was caused, initially, by the collapse of Indonesia's largest financial institution, Bank Century when it lost 6.7 trillion rupiah ($720 million). That bank failure came on the heels of the insolvency of Indonesia's central bank, Bank Indonesia a decade earlier. The money Bank Century lost was owed to—you guessed it—America's Wall Street banks who advanced them massive loans to modernize their infrastructure: roads and critical services to prepare them for the transnational princes of industry bringing the third world into the 21st century—with American factories and American jobs.
The exporting of US jobs to the third world that began with the never constitutionally ratified North American Free Trade Agreement enacted by the 103rd Congress (which can be repealed since it's a law and not a treaty), created the economic mechanism that, combined with another Clinton-era law orchestrated by then community-organizer Barack Obama in Chicago that forced Illinois banks to make bad mortgage loans to minorities that Fannie Mae had agreed to underwrite. In 1999, Bill Clinton's Republican-controlled 106th Congress amended Public Law 95-128, 12 USC § 2901, Jimmy Carter's 1977 Community Reinvestment Act to reduce what that legislation called discriminatory credit practices against minorities in impoverished areas—a banking practice known as "red-lining." The Clinton law, actually concocted by Republicans to curry favor from minorities voters, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, was officially known as The Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999. It forced banks to make home loans guaranteed by Fannie Mae to low income families who were not "sound financial risks" for mortgages. It should have been called "The Mortgage Industry Implosion Time Bomb Act of 1999" because the 106th Congress lit the fuse. It took six years for the economic time bomb to explode and for the American mortgage industry to implode.
TARP would have repaired the economy had the funds allocated to get the damaged