Tag: cities

Urban Magnets for Disaster

Filed in BP, deflation, economy, Ford, Gold, inflation, o, silver, ubs, US Dollar by on February 18, 2011 0 Comments

When it comes to bad stuff the sky’s the limit. It’s gonna happen, eventually…one way or another. And it could be real bad. And when bad stuff happens, you’re better off being somewhere else. Where? Generally, bad stuff seems to happen most often in cities. Why is that? Cities are where most people live. It is where governments are. And it is where the labor force is most specialized. There are no subsistence farmers living in cities. Nor do urban populations “live off the land.” Instead, they depend on complex networks of commerce. The typical city dweller produces neither food nor energy. He sits all day in an office — completely dependent on others to provide power and food. Then, he goes home — still completely dependent on the division of labor for his most important needs. Progress can be described as the elaboration of the division of labor. In man’s most primitive state, specialization is extremely limited. From what we’ve been told, the early man was the hunter. Early woman gathered…that’s about the extent of it. As the tribe grows larger, specialization increases. One person might tend the fire. Another might be in charge of making clothes or arrows. The advent of sedentary agriculture and towns caused a big leap forward in human progress and, not coincidentally, the division of labor. Some townspeople went out to tend the fields. Others began to focus on woodworking…or iron mongering…or making weapons…or clothes. Some played cards and hung around at bars. There was soon a homebuilding industry…and, not long after, merchants, prostitutes and bankers…and even shyster lawyers and tax collectors. As the division of labor expanded, the average person became richer…and more dependent on others. In order to eat, someone else had to plant…and till…and harvest…and hunt…and gather. And then, when agriculture became mechanized, he depended on faraway people who produced oil and gasoline…and people who built …

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Hey Neighbor: ‘Mansion Squatting’ on the Rise

Filed in Debt, Gold, GOld juniors, Gold Market by on September 24, 2010 0 Comments
Hey Neighbor: ‘Mansion Squatting’ on the Rise

If you’re bored this weekend and have nothing to do there is always “mansion squatting”. As it turns out, it is way better than living in a van down by the river. On top of that, you may even run into a movie star or two….. From MSNBC by Bill Briggs entitled: Squatters moving into upscale neighborhoods “On the big screen, actor Randy Quaid may be best known for his mooching, move-in-and-never-leave character “Cousin Eddie” from National Lampoon’s “Vacation” films. Last weekend, he allegedly followed his own Hollywood script. Quaid and his wife, Evi, were arrested Saturday after they were found living in a guest house on a million-dollar, Montecito, Calif., property Quaid once owned. While Quaid claims his name remains on the deed, the actor and his wife were jailed until they were able to post $10,000 bail. Quaid is hardly alone in his distinctly post-bubble legal trouble. Such high-end “mansion squatting” has becomg an increasingly visible irritant in or near Seattle, St. Louis, Chicago and Los Angeles and probably elsewhere, industry experts say. And the trend appears to be growing, as the housing bust means thousands of mansions around the country are languishing on the market, often under the control of banks that have foreclosed on them. “It’s immoral but I do understand, logically, how people get this idea in their heads,” said Tara-Nicholle Nelson, a former Bay Area broker agent and now a consumer educator for the real estate website Trulia.com. “I also think this happens a lot more than we know.” Upscale squatters have been nabbed in at least three other cities: In Sugar Grove, Ill., a suburb west of Chicago, cops arrested 42-year-old Steven Hawthorne in April 2009 after he moved his furniture and big-screen TV into a vacant, $700,000 foreclosed home. He introduced himself to neighbors as the new owner and stayed for about eight months. Hawthorne, who also managed to have the power, gas and water turned on at the dwelling, was eventually charged by authorities with two felonies, including theft of government property (the utilities). In Malibu, Calif., Wells Fargo executive Cheronda Guyton occasionally occupied a $14.9 million beach house to host swanky social gatherings, according to newspaper reports. One catch: the property’s former owners had lost the home to foreclosure after they were victimized by Bernie Madoff – and the estate was claimed by their bank – that’s right, Wells Fargo. When residents within the gated community glimpsed the parties, they got Guyton’s name from…

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Shocker: Heat wave story from Associated Press – no mention of global warming

Filed in Gold by on July 8, 2010 0 Comments
Shocker: Heat wave story from Associated Press – no mention of global warming

Some supporting research conducted at New York City follows the news item below.  h/t to WUWT reader Phil (not the grouchy one) -A Heat islands: Cities heat quickly, cool slowly By DEEPTI HAJELA Associated Press Writer NEW YORK (AP) — … Continue reading →

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Most Americans and Europeans Support Impending Attack on Iran

Filed in euro, gld, Gold by on June 19, 2010 0 Comments

Kurt Nimmo Infowars.com June 19, 2010 Remember Hitler’s maxim that the bigger and the more outrageous the lie, the more likely the masses are to believe it? Following the results of a recent poll we once again get an object lesson demonstrating that Hitler knew what he was talking about. “Majorities in many Western and some Muslim countries are willing to consider military action against Iran to prevent the Islamic republic from obtaining nuclear weapons, a global poll showed on Thursday,” reports the Sydney Morning Herald today. “The Pew Research Center’s poll conducted in 22 countries found majorities or pluralities in 16 countries endorsing the possibility of military intervention.” Naturally Americans are more susceptible to neocon propaganda than other people around the world. In America, a sucker is born every minute, as P. T. Barnum said (actually it was “Paper Collar Joe” Bessimer who made the cynical comment). “Americans are among the most supportive of a military option to deal with Iran with 66 per cent of those who oppose a nuclear-armed Iran saying they would consider the use of force, a figure second only to Nigeria’s 71 per cent.” No explanation why Nigerians are more brain-dead than Americans who spend large periods of time sucking up fallacious and absurd propaganda disseminated by a corporate media that works hand-in-glove with transnational corporations and the military-industrial complex, or maybe that should be military-industrial-media complex. The death merchants have burrowed deep inside the corporate media — the Carlyle Group at the New York Times (the “liberal” newspaper instrumental in propagating neocon murder disinfo prior the invasion of Iraq), Bechtel at NBC (owned by mega-death merchant General Electric), Boeing and Halliburton at ABC, and Lockheed-Martin at Gannett. Both Fox News and CNN enthusiastically cheered the invasion of Iraq. CNN not only sought advice from the Pentagon on new hires during the invasion, but during a…

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Goldman Sachs Eyes SKBHC – Analyst Blog

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. ( GS ) plans to acquire 24.9% stake in SKBHC Holdings, a Corona del Mar, California- based investment firm. On the other side, SKBHC is planning to fully acquire Minnesota-based Starbuck Bancshares Inc., the holding company of The First National Bank of Starbuck.  Both deals await Federal Reserve board approval. This acquisition will provide Goldman an opportunity to invest in banks across the country.  After acquiring Starbuck bank, SKBHC will get an access to its national bank charter, which is needed to buy other banks across the country. On the contrary, it was less expensive and easier for SKBHC to acquire a small bank with a national charter, rather than seeking a national charter on its own.  On the other side, First National would get access to extra technical support services and other resources, which were not there in the prior period.  Earlier this week, following Oaktree Capital Management and the Illinois teacher’s pension fund, a private equity fund of Goldman also planned to invest in a company, which is planning to buy failed U.S. banks. Therefore, Goldman gave an application to acquire stake in SKBHC Holdings. Oaktree is also planning to seek 25% stake in SKBHC and the Illinois fund voted to invest $100 million.  SKBHC also expects San Francisco-based private equity firm Friedman Fleischer & Lowe LLC to be an investor. As of Mar 31, 2010, Starbuck had $18 million in assets.  First National Bank has $17.9 million in assets and earned

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Case-Shiller Index: Home Prices Fell 3%

Filed in Gold, GOld juniors by on May 25, 2010 0 Comments
Case-Shiller Index: Home Prices Fell 3%

Just when you thought the real estate market was showing signs of a recovery, reality rears its ugly head. According to the latest figures from the Case-Shiller Home Price Index, prices have started to slip again…pointing to a double dip in home prices. From CNNMoney by Les Christie entitled: Home prices fall 3% in early 2010 “ Home prices fell in the first quarter of 2010 but are still higher than they were a year ago. According to the S&P/Case-Shiller nation-wide index, home prices fell 3.2% quarter-over-quarter but have still managed to climb 2% year-over-year. The index continued to show weakness despite very low mortgage interest rates and tax incentives to encourage home purchases. Two other indexes tracked by Case-Shiller registered declines for the month of March, 0.5% for its index of 20 major cities and 0.4% for the 10-city index. “The housing market may be in better shape than this time last year; but, when you look at recent trends there are signs of some renewed weakening in home prices,” says David M. Blitzer, chairman of S&P’s index committee. Brad Hunter, who follows the housing market for Metrostudy, a consulting and data-providing company, is predicting further price erosion along the lines of 10% or so before the market fully bottoms out. “I’ve been dismayed by how weak demand has been across the country,” he said. Many of the cities covered by the index showed continued problems: Las Vegas recorded a 12% decline over the past 12 months and Detroit prices have fallen 4.6% since March 2009. There were a few winners led by San Francisco, where prices have jumped more than 16% over the past 12 months. “We’re still missing robust job growth,” Hunter said, “the element that pulls us out of decline.” No jobs, no money, no dice. It’s really not that complicated. Related Articles: The Case-Shiller Index Meets the “Gated Ghetto” Existing Homes Sales Point to a Double Dip The 2010 Housing Market “Shadow Inventory” Underwater Homes Trap Borrowers into Higher Rates Zandi on Housing: “I think we are going see to another leg down” FHA Defaults: Many More on the Horizon To learn more about Wealth Daily click here Advertisement Gold’s “Louisiana Purchase” Not long ago, the world’s largest uranium giant practically gave away billions of dollars worth of gold to one small exploration company… for only $250,000! Before their next set of drill results are posted, find out how this rare opportunity could easily triple your money by September! Click Here For Your Free Report Now! Case-Shiller Index: Home Prices Fell 3% originally appeared in Wealth Daily . Wealth Daily is a free daily newsletter featuring contrarian investment insights and commentary.

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Recession, Texas Style

Filed in economy, Gold, inflation, lead, New Gold, recession, Spot Gold by on April 28, 2010 0 Comments

We Texans pride ourselves on everything being bigger and better, but the definition of a “better” depression is a smaller, lighter one. I wrote months ago about how Texas was last into the Depression and has been hit less hard than most areas. At that time, only Brownsville, on the Mexican border, had an unemployment rate that matched the national average, which was in the mid-seven range then. At present we’re running 8.2 per cent., here in Texas, using government figures, with the national rate holding stubbornly at “9.7%.” I put that in quotation marks because I consider it a fairy tale, over and above that using traditional accounting methods would yield results almost exactly twice the official version. That half a point drop from 10.2% not long ago came too suddenly for me to find it believable. I’m just a simple arithmetician but I understand the sort of figures we’re talking here and it is no use for the government to tell me there is no inflation — it has been at least 3% by the most stringent definition for the last three years — and that national unemployment averages 9.7% if we just don’t count everyone without a job. Laughter…my husband was a genuine mathematical genius who had a passion for statistics and understood numbers the way I understand words. I would love to hear John’s answer on what the unemployment rate is. One reason we’re doing better in Texas is in the diversification of interests and in the tightly closed systems in our many small towns. Those are not totally immune, and in Hamilton the little, more expensive grocery store “down town” (that being the four blocks which surround the Courthouse square) has gone out of business. David’s, a small local chain, no doubt smiled, and stopped running so many loss leaders. What else? When it is twenty-five to forty miles to the next grocery store of any sort, pretty much you have a captaive audience. I imagine the newest restaurant in town will go under, but pretty much nothing much will change. It can be frustrating that kids who aren’t going to inherit a family business have to go elsewhere to find jobs in “normal” times, but it is quite comforting to know not many jobs will be shed in your town because there weren’t any superfluous jobs in the first place. Each business has a place in the local economy that isn’t going to go away, from the two drug store (neither chain) to Ace is the Place, to the feed stores. In the cities and industrial parks many areas are humming along nicely turning out machinery, computers, chemicals, and electronic devices. No, we’re not just about beef and oil. We’re making things they want in BRIC. The first quarter — first two months, actually — exports rose 24.3% over 2009, close to thirty billion dollars’ worth. Patrick Jankowski, Vice President of research for the Greater Houston Partnership, commented that there are over 700,000 jobs in Texas geared to manufacturing goods for export, probably…

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Federal Government Provide Entitlements at the Cost of Collapse

Filed in Debt, Federal Reserve, New Gold, silver, Spot Gold, ubs by on April 16, 2010 0 Comments

The year 2010 has America reeling on the brink of total, disgusting, annihilation, whether the D.C. Gang admits it or not. Look at us. We have debts, currently at close to $13 trillion, and committed spending of $170 trillion, both amounts far too large to comprehend. We have borrowed and borrowed from the citizens, China, and anyone else who will lend. The more we borrow, the more we owe, and the more interest which will accumulate. The lenders are now having second thoughts about lending us more. Without the loans, we are lost, and may be lost eventually anyway. It used to be that the income tax paid for our expenses, but now it doesn’t even pay the interest we owe each year. We cannot ever pay the debt, which grows larger each minute. We have managed to create enemies around the world by interfering in others’ business, lifestyles, and politics, especially in Muslim nations. Why are we in Afghanistan, and Iraq? Why are we responsible for millions of innocents being put to death in Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, and Korea? Did any of these nations harm or threaten us? It goes back to economics again, because those wars have reduced the value of our dollar so much, that it will buy but perhaps 10% of what it bought before Korea. The devaluation of the dollar has made saving in it stupid, but most still do. We have decapitated cities, jobs and manufacturing gone overseas, and a huge underclass. How did it happen? Several things happened, and not just when FDR came into office…

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Gripping stuff

Filed in Gold Holdings by on April 13, 2010 0 Comments

During the dry seasons, the farmers would come to the cities looking for work . There they found an audience of people keen to watch and bet on the matches . As the sport gained in popularity, it began to take on elements of martial arts, incorporat Gripping stuff

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Follow the Trace

Filed in economy, inflation, silver, Spot Gold by on April 1, 2010 0 Comments

The interesting excerpt from Trace Mayer’s book made me smile ruefully because his solution to the problem is better than mine. He wrote the book first, so references to Chapter Six make it clear that this isn’t all he knows about the subject. He has the luxury of not attempting to explain everything in the time it takes the bar on the right to hit the bottom. “Silvery” laughter, because my system IS to start with an idea or facts and write until the ball drops in my version of Times Square. At that point I start guiltily, try to come up with a zingy one-liner, and quit. I have been a “prepper” (a less loaded term than “survivalist,” which has picked up pejorative connotations of rednecks with missing teeth brandishing large firearms in open revolt against government) for three and a half years, now, and as Trace notes that can become a very resource-consuming operation if pursued to its logical conclusions. If there were a Preppers Anonymous, the meeting would start, “My name is Linda and I’m an addict. You think you can take tractors or leave them alone, then decide that just one more John Deere and another ton of rice won’t hurt, until mania has taken over your life.” I applaud his suggestions for preparing for suburbanites, with the proviso that they are against two very different events. (I suggest reading the rest of his book because I am certain he makes that clear.) Just in case you have never considered “prepping,” let me see if I can eke out a hit to bring home at least one of the runners on base. Three months’ food for family and pets is extremely sensible if what you are guarding yourself against is a comparatively short-term period when the “just in time” food distribution…

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Chicago Sees Nation’s Steepest Home Price Drop

Filed in economy, Gold by on March 31, 2010 0 Comments

S&P Case-Shiller Index Shows Drop Of 0.8 Percent In Chicago, While Homes Gained Value In Many Other Cities NEW YORK (CBS) ? The housing market rebound may be fading, but there’s a bigger concern for Chicago homeowners looking to sell – home prices here are still falling. In January, home prices in Chicago

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Proof That Vaccines Didn’t Save Us

Filed in Bank Gold, gld by on March 23, 2010 0 Comments

History shows us that vaccines did NOT eradicate the diseases that plagued humanity. That is a common misconception — in actual fact, it was better sanitation and hygiene in the cities that prevented the spread of diseases. These charts, from official sources, show us that vaccines (1) were not responsible, and are not necessary, for eliminating infectious diseases, (2) are not effective, and (3) are dangerous. WRH permalink

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