"Everyone has their price. What's surprising is...how low it is" -- Napoleon

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Paradevices

 

By George Lei, Bloomberg markets live reporter and strategist

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen implored Beijing’s top leaders during her four-day visit to refrain from boosting the country’s already vast manufacturing capacity and to focus on lifting domestic demand instead.

That push, however, is in stark contrast to the priorities of President Xi Jinping, whose “new productive forces” slogan is now dominating the economic policy discourse. His push suggests the country’s expansion of its production capacity will likely persist and contribute to increasing tensions with the nation’s major trading partners.

While its not entirely clear how Xi’s policy will play out on the ground, equity investors have already picked winners since the phrase was listed as the government’s top task in early March. Market reactions seem to imply that Beijing will double down on state spending to strengthen China’s transition toward high-tech, value-added production and advanced manufacturing. There is also a perception that “Made in China 2025” - a government plan to groom 10 globally competitive industries, and one that drew the ire of former President Trump - is making a comeback.

Tags: CHINA/TAIWAN, CURRENT EVENTS, ECONOMY
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Insurance companies across the country are using satellites, drones, manned airplanes and even high-altitude balloons to spy on properties they cover with homeowners policies -- and using the findings to drop customers, often without giving any opportunity to address alleged shortcomings. 

“We’ve seen a dramatic increase across the country in reports from consumers who’ve been dropped by their insurers on the basis of an aerial image,” United Policyholders executive director Amy Bach tell the Wall Street Journal. Reasons can range from shoddy roofing to yard clutter and undeclared trampolines.  

Much of this surveillance is done via the Geospatial Insurance Consortium, which boasts of its coverage of 99% of the US population.

Image removed.The Geospatial Insurance Consortium provides imagery insurers use to study roof condition and look for risky property attributes (via GIC)

In pitching its ability to provide high-resolution "imagery and insights" for property reviews, GIC says insurers can use the service to "review risk and exposure on a building such as proximity of vegetation to the structure, whether a roof needs updating, and verify the exact location for a policy." 

“If your roof is 20 years old and one hailstorm is going to take it off, you should pay more than somebody with a brand new roof,” Allstate CEO Tom Willson told the Journal, unapologetically and ominously adding that, where the company's use of digital imagery is concerned, "there's even more to come." 

Wilson framed aerial spying as a pricing issue, but many consumers are finding that companies are using it to suddenly drop their coverage altogether

Tags: COMPUTERS/INTERNET, COVER-UP/ DECEPTIONS/ PROPAGANDA, CURRENT EVENTS, ECONOMY
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After American borrowers adjusted their finances amid the mass-suspension of student loan payments during the pandemic (and the scorching inflation that followed), the Biden administration on Monday announced new student loan plans that would give borrowers up to $20,000 in loan forgiveness for balances that have grown due to unpaid interest since entering repayment, regardless of income.

The plan is aimed at those with "runaway interest."

Those who qualify for the "SAVE IDR" (income-driven repayment) would have the full balance of their unpaid interest forgiven, which would benefit roughly 25 million Americans.

What's more, the administration is also looking to provide automatic debt relief for those who qualify under the SAVE plan, Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, and similar forgiveness programs which have hit red tape when it comes to relief.

Lastly, the plan would give relief to those enrolled in low-financial-value education programs deemed insufficient by the Department of Education, as well as those experiencing hardship in paying back loans and who are at risk of default

 

Tags: CORPORATE MEDIA, COVER-UP/ DECEPTIONS/ PROPAGANDA, CURRENT EVENTS, EDUCATION, POLITICS/ ELECTIONS/ CORRUPTION
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Authored by Mark Jeftovic via BombThrower.com,

Everybody talks a good game when asked about environmental concerns. But they underestimate what real “climate action” will cost them, personally, and they’re prone to balking when they figure it out.

In 2018, The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago conducted a survey of 1,202 people asking them if they thought climate change was an issue, and if so, how much were they willing to contribute, out of their own pockets, towards “fixing it”:

  • 71% of the respondents said that climate change was a reality, and most of those thought human activity was largely responsible for it.
  • 57% said they’d be willing to spend $1/month, or $12 annually.
  • 23% were willing to go big: $40 a month, in order to “fix” climate change.

A more recent study of ten European countries in 2021 found that most people feel as though they are already doing their part to live a climate conscious lifestyle – and further – they are individually doing more than those in the media, or their governments (hold that thought).

In other words, while most respondents believed that there was an impending climate crisis, they also believe they had already made all the personal lifestyle adjustments they’ll need to make in order to address it.

These attitudes are pretty typical of a populace who has already undergone massive conditioning by the media and academia around climate alarmism, but who otherwise live largely insular, bubble-wrapped lifestyles and think food comes from Uber Eats.

They have no idea that  that climate targets, like “netzero” or Agenda 2030 will cost more them more than a few hundred bucks a year, per person, to “fix”.

Even with carbon taxes becoming more prevalent – citizens think the extent of the impact on their lives are the economic pressures of them inexorably rising (here in Canada, the carbon tax went up 23% on April 1st, the same day all federal Members of Parliament got a pay raise).

That’s bad enough – but people are still completely unprepared for what has already been decided from on high for their personal destinies

Tags: CLIMATEGATE
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Authored by Paul Joseph Watson via Modernity.news,

Entirely as predicted, Police Scotland has been deluged with vexatious and politically-driven ‘hate crime’ reports, with one top official complaining “we cannot cope.”

Didn’t see this one coming.

Under the new legislation, anyone deemed to have been verbally ‘abusive’, in person or online, to a transgender person, including “insulting” them could be hit with a prison sentence of up to seven years.

That instantly led to a flood of bad faith reports, including from conservatives making a mockery of the system and from deranged left-wing activists trying to punish their ideological adversaries.

David Threadgold, Chairman of the Scottish Police Federation, said that the new legislation was being exploited to pursue personal and political vendettas.

“Police Scotland have gone public and said that on every occasion, reports of hate crime will be investigated,” Mr. Threadgold told the BBC. “That creates a situation where we simply cannot cope at the moment.”

“When you have vexatious complaints, people who look to weaponise this legislation or who make these complaints for personal gain or political point scoring, then that creates a problem for the police which can affect public satisfaction in my organisation,” he added.

As we previously highlighted, Police Scotland admitted that the new law could create “additional demand” and create a “resource implication” for police.

This followed a trial of a separate program set to be implemented across the country to stop investigating crimes like theft and criminal damage, which authorities acknowledge will help criminals.

As we reported yesterday, out of the more than 8000 reports police have received under the new ‘hate crime’ law, less than one per cent are leading to investigations.

Police Scotland are having to pay officers in their control room “hundreds of thousands” in overtime to deal with the onslaught of frivolous reports.

However, that’s still nearly 800 new investigations in a single week for a police force that already has stretched resources.

It’s been a complete disaster, but they can’t say nobody warned them

Claire's Observations:  the Scottish people are usually infinitely more pragmatic than to introduce legislation which could be so abused; what the hell happened here?!?

Tags: COVER-UP/ DECEPTIONS/ PROPAGANDA, CURRENT EVENTS, DICTATORSHIP, GREAT BRITAIN/ UK
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Tuesday, Apr 09, 2024 - 01:45 AM

In 2006, NATO defense ministers agreed that each member country would commit at least 2% of its GDP to defense spending. Nearly two decades later, some member countries have not met the target, only to be recently reminded by former President Trump to ramp up defense spending or face severe consequences. 

Perhaps Germany's ruling coalition heard Trump's warning loud and clear. A new Bloomberg report, citing people familiar with the plans, reveals the German government is planning to purchase two additional F126 frigates via Damen Group/Blohm plus Voss/Lürssen/German Naval Yards for three billion euros and 900 Fuchs armored vehicles manufactured by Rheinmetall for four billion euros

Claire's Observations;  Well, this is a very interesting start of a "coming up to the plate" on NATO expenses by Germany; are they foreseeing a Trump landslide in November (IF elections are allowed to happen at that point)?

Tags: CURRENT EVENTS, ECONOMY, GERMANY, NATO
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Tuesday, Apr 09, 2024 - 03:15 AM

A judge in Missouri has significantly reduced a jury award against Bayer AG's Monsanto unit, cutting down the punitive damages from a $1.5 billion verdict to about $550 million, according to Fortune

This decision comes amid Monsanto's ongoing legal battles over allegations that its Roundup weedkiller causes cancer. While the judge, Daniel Green, declined Monsanto's request for a new trial or to dismiss the verdict entirely, the reduction in damages provides some financial relief to Bayer.

The company, which acquired Monsanto for $63 billion in 2018, plans to appeal the entire verdict, arguing that the damages are still excessively high.

The original verdict awarded three plaintiffs a combined $61.1 million in actual damages and $500 million each in punitive damages for claims that Roundup use led to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The punitive damages were adjusted to align with Supreme Court guidance, which suggests punitive awards should not exceed 10 times the actual damages.

Fortune reported that Bayer has already allocated up to $16 billion to settle over 100,000 similar cases, and it's now facing a new wave of litigation.

The company has also committed to replacing glyphosate in its U.S. consumer Roundup products with other weed-killing ingredients. The Missouri case, involving plaintiffs from across the U.S., highlights the ongoing controversy and legal challenges surrounding Roundup and its alleged health risks.

 

Tags: CORPORATE MEDIA, COVER-UP/ DECEPTIONS/ PROPAGANDA, CURRENT EVENTS, SCIENCE/ HEALTH/ CLIMATE/ NATURE
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Monday, Apr 08, 2024 - 01:25 PM

Perhaps the world's most influential banker - JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon - warned the world in his annual letter to shareholders that while he expects US economic resilience (and higher inflation and interest rates), and is optimistic about transformational opportunities from AI, he worries geopolitical events including the war in Ukraine and the Israel-Hamas war, as well as U.S. political polarization, might be creating an environment that “may very well be creating risks that could eclipse anything since World War II.”

He begins with an ominous overview of the geopolitical chaos the world faces.

America's Global Leadership is being challenged...

Across the globe, 2023 was yet another year of significant challenges, from the terrible ongoing war and violence in the Middle East and Ukraine to mounting terrorist activity and growing geopolitical tensions, importantly with China. Almost all nations felt the effects last year of global economic uncertainty, including higher energy and food prices, inflation rates and volatile markets. While all these events and associated instability have serious ramifications on our company, colleagues, clients and countries where we do business, their consequences on the world at large — with the extreme suffering of the Ukrainian people, escalating tragedy in the Middle East and the potential restructuring of the global order — are far more important.

As these events unfold, America’s global leadership role is being challenged outside by other nations and inside by our polarized electorate. We need to find ways to put aside our differences and work in partnership with other Western nations in the name of democracy. During this time of great crises, uniting to protect our essential freedoms, including free enterprise, is paramount. We should remember that America, “conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal,” still remains a shining beacon of hope to citizens around the world. JPMorgan Chase, a company that historically has worked across borders and boundaries, will do its part to ensure that the global economy is safe and secure

Claire's Observations;   "Safe and secure", My astrolabe!!! Please remember here:  this is the same Chase bank with a criminal rap sheet as long as your arm, and here is the latest in a string of felony/fines it will have to pay:

JPMorgan fined $348M by OCC, Fed over trade surveillance lapses

By Thu, Mar 14, 2024 2:01 PM

"JPMorgan Chase will pay approximately $348.2 million in fines to settle allegations laid by two federal banking regulators that it failed to adequately monitor trading and order activity.

The Treasury Department’s Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) issued a $250 million penalty against the bank Thursday, while the Federal Reserve Board announced a fine of nearly $98.2 million as part of a consent order, both related to JP Morgan’s alleged failure to surveil “billions” of transactions on 30 trading venues"

And yet, with all of these foulups, bleeps, and blunders, Jaimie Dimon is NEVER the target, and will never go to prison over the bank's massive, fine-infused failures.  Interesting, that!!  One has to imagine that these fines are so small, relative to the money Chase is making, that they are simply an economic "swat on the wrist."

 

Tags: CORPORATE MEDIA, COVER-UP/ DECEPTIONS/ PROPAGANDA, CURRENT EVENTS, ECONOMY
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Bank Says Silver $32 and Gold $3,000 Upside in Play

Bullion Bank (quietly) raises Gold and Silver targets

Authored by GoldFix ZH Edit

April 8th: Bullion Bank (Citi) raises short term price targets for Gold and Silver 9% and 16% respectively, increasing price targets to $2400 and $28 over the next 3 months. with topside price spikes of $3,000 and $32.00 this year now on the table.

This coming less than 2 months after raising their price targets for 2024

HT as always.. ZH

Tags: CURRENT EVENTS, ECONOMY
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By: orraz
Tags: CURRENT EVENTS
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By: orraz
Tags: CURRENT EVENTS
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has long urged military action against the self-avowed Islamic Republic, but the nation of 88 million people possesses significant defensive capabilities.

Iran has nine types of missiles with sufficient range to hit Israeli territory, Iranian news agency ISNA reported against the backdrop of concerns over possible armed conflict between the two countries.

An infographic presented by the news agency Sunday revealed multiple Iranian ballistic missiles – the Sejjil, Kheibar, Emad, Shahab-3, Ghadr, Paveh, Fattah-2, Kheibar Shekan, and Haj Qasem – the speed of which ranges from Mach 5 to Mach 14 (from 3,836 miles per hour to 10,741 miles per hour).

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has long urged military action against the self-avowed Islamic Republic and regional critic of Israel, but the nation of 88 million people possesses significant defensive capabilities. A war on Iran also raises the prospect of potential involvement by Tehran's ally Russia, while Netanyahu would presumably count on an assist from the United States.

Tags: IRAN, ISRAEL, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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The United States 'will not accept' a situation where cut price Chinese goods flood the global market, battering industries elsewhere, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told Beijing as she wrapped up four days of high-level talks.

'There is much more work to do,' Yellen said at a news conference in the Chinese capital today. 'And it remains unclear what this relationship will endure in the months and years ahead.'

Yellen repeatedly warned about the risks of China's excess industrial capacity during meetings with officials and business leaders in Beijing and the southern city of Guangzhou.

Washington is concerned that 'large-scale government support' in China is leading to more production capacity than global markets can absorb, resulting in a surge of cheap exports in sectors such as solar and electric vehicles and stifling the growth of those industries elsewhere.

Yellen said such support more than a decade ago had led to below-cost steel flooding the global market, which 'decimated industries across the world and in the United States'

Claire's Observations:  Secretary Yellen, a word, please;  why, please tell me, is US industry incapable of competing with China on this kind of steel?!?  What is the problem?!?

Perhaps, instead of "threatening China" ,  you might just want to have a forum with US steel producers, to find our what the problem is. and see what industry intelligence could fix it?!?  Because, my dear lady, it is NOT China's problem that the US has become so non-competitive in so many areas.  Attractiveness of price, coupled with quality product= sales.  Corporate America used to understand this, but don't seem to anymore.   

The last thing we need, Madam Secretary, is a "hot war" with China over economic competition. This country absolutely doesn't have the troop strength; the money; the weaponry; or the manufacturing to insure a positive outcome to a war with China at this point, as you should be well aware.

Tags: CHINA/TAIWAN, COVER-UP/ DECEPTIONS/ PROPAGANDA, CURRENT EVENTS, ECONOMY
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