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Janet Yellen and the The “Pink Dream”: Prelude to an American Nightmare

November 14, 2013 in Economics

By Joseph Salerno

On Monday, former Fed official Andrew Huszar publicly apologized to the American public for his seminal role in executing the QE program, a program he characterizes as “the greatest backdoor Wall Street bailout of all time,” and  ”the largest financial-markets intervention by any government in world history.”  While this is a momentous admission from an insider (Mr. Huszar is also a former Wall Street banker), perhaps Mr. Huszar’s most revealing statement concerned the results of  QE “relentlessly pumping money into the financial markets during the past five years.”  He referred to the spectacular rally in financial markets and expressed agreement with the growing belief among expert observers that  market conditions had become “bubble-like.”

In a paper just released by the American Enterprise Institute, another former policymaker, resident fellow Desmond Lachman, formerly deputy director of the International Monetary Fund’s Policy Development and Review Department, warns that QE and other “unorthodox monetary policies” are having “unintended consequences.”  Among other consequences, Lachman sees signs of incipient bubbles forming throughout the world:

An important aim of the QE policies pursued in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan has been to encourage risk taking and to raise asset prices as the means to stimulate aggregate demand. The question that now needs to be asked is whether these policies may have given rise to excessive risk taking, overleveraging, and bubbles in asset and credit markets. In this context, one has to wonder whether historically low yields on junk bonds in the industrialized countries now understate the risk of owning those bonds. . . . One also has to wonder whether yields on sovereign bonds in the European periphery have become disassociated from those countries’ underlying economic fundamentals and whether global equity valuations have not become excessively rich.

The markets for gems and for collectibles have also become very frothy of late.  Yesterday, new records were set for a gemstone  and for an Andy Warhol piece of art sold at auction.  The “Pink Dream” is 59.60 carat vivid pink diamond, which is the highest color grade for diamonds, and the purity of its crystals  is ranked among the top two percent in the world.  The record setting price was $83 million.  Not coincidentally, the  DJIA set an intraday record shortly before the auction.  The new record price for a Warhol piece was $105.4 million for the artist’s “Silver Car Crash.”  In addition to Warhol, records were established for six other artists …read more

Source: MISES INSTITUTE

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Sen. Paul Speaks Out Against Insurance Cancellations

November 14, 2013 in Politics & Elections

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sen. Rand Paul today took to the Senate floor to speak out against the Obama Administration’s Affordable Care Act by sharing the story of the Mangiones, a family from Kentucky affected by Obamacare. Below is video and transcript of Sen. Paul’s floor speech.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH SEN. PAUL FLOOR SPEECH ON OBAMACARE

TRANSCRIPT:

PAUL: The President promised the American people if you like your doctor you can keep him or her. He promised if you like your insurance, you can keep it. But he needs to tell Andy Mangione and his family why they can’t keep their insurance.

They had an individual policy they were happy with. They paid $300 a month. They are now going to be asked to pay $900 a month for things they don’t want and they didn’t choose to have. This isn’t really just about health care. This is about freedom of choice. This is about whether or not you can choose what type of insurance you want.

The question is what’s next? What choices will be taken from us? I’m going to be signing up for Obamacare. I tried yesterday 15 times. I wasn’t able to get beyond ‘create an account’ because every time I pushed ‘create an account,’ nothing happened. This is a real problem. Five million people without insurance.

The President said if you can keep your insurance, you should be allowed to. You can keep your doctor. Something has to be done because the Mangione family is going to have to pay three times as much for an insurance policy they don’t want. We’re taking their freedom of choice away.

I for one say enough is enough. Let’s get rid of this. Let’s give back freedom to the consumer, give back freedom to Kentucky families. In Kentucky, 10 times more families have been canceled than have actually gotten on.

Something has to give. Mr. President, if you said we can keep our doctor, come forward and tell us why we can’t keep our doctor. Thank you very much.

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Source: RAND PAUL

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In Times of Tyranny, Democracy Is Liberty’s Friend

November 14, 2013 in Blogs

By Robin Koerner At many times in the history of the Anglo people, the abuses of liberty by Power (capitalized to indicate the official power of the centralized State and those close to it) have produced such resistance by enough normal men and women who felt their lives directly changed by those abuses, that real political change of historic importance was the result.

There has probably never been a year — perhaps not even a day — when Power did not, through policy or the political process, expand itself at the expense of the liberty of someone, somewhere. In normal times, the process of Power’s self-aggrandizement is mostly political: laws get made, agencies get established — but the effect on the everyday experiences of normal people is small enough that the culture generates no resistance.

In the United States, since 9-11 especially, some of the chattering classes (this writer included) and a few concerned citizens have been complaining about the brazenness of the 21st-century approach to the abuse of citizens by the State, its agents and its friends. The stripping of individual rights has been in this millennium extensive and fast (habeas corpus, due process, privacy, rule of Law (as enacted by elected and accountable officials rather than appointees of the Executive) etc.).

Until recently, however, these abuses have remained mostly political, rather than cultural. That is to say that Americans’ loss of rights have had not much of an impact in the culture because they did not affect the everyday experiences of a significant section of the population.

For example, the loss of the right to due process did not create per se a reaction against Power because most people don’t experience due process in their everyday lives; the loss of privacy does not cause a reaction against Power because the violation of privacy, if undetected, doesn’t change our everyday experiences; and the farming out of law-making power to unelected agents of the State is unperceived as long as we don’t know when our behavior is being regulated by agents of the Executive and their rules, or by Law, properly made in Congress.

However, that is now changing. And the change is historic, in the literal sense of the word. Every few generations or even centuries — Power begins to impose drastic changes that are felt immediately in the everyday …read more

Source: ROBIN KOERNER BLOG

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SENATE FLOOR: Sen. Rand Paul Speaks Out Against Obamacare – November 14, 2013

November 14, 2013 in Politics & Elections

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Source: RAND PAUL

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Sen. Paul Appears on Fox's Hannity- November 14, 2013

November 14, 2013 in Politics & Elections

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Source: RAND PAUL