December 9: Daily Contrarian Reads

Davos 2016—-The Secret Meeting When They Decided To Come For The Cash

If you read yesterday’s Dispatch, you know the War on Cash is basically an effort to eliminate paper money. Politicians tell us this will make society safer. Of course, we know this is pure propaganda. The War on Cash is really about control. You see, if the government gets rid of paper cash, all that money will be trapped inside the digital banking system. This will allow the government to track and tax our money at will…Yes. There’s an annual World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland. Leaders in business, government, media, and even some celebrities go to these events to discuss the big issues of the day. Immediately after the conference, there was a big acceleration to eliminate paper cash, or at least high-denomination currency notes. A flood of articles from The New York Times, The Economist, Zero Hedge, and other publications picked up on this.

Trump Is Right—Boeing Is Gouging The Taxpayers On The New $4 Billion Air Force One

However, with a total program cost estimated to be around $4 billion dollars, Boeing is clearly gouging the taxpayer.  The newest derivative of Air Force One will end up being over six times as expensive as the last one, which was built on the same airframe.  I guess Boeing just thought the higher price tag was going to slip through the cracks of a bloated DoD budget?

The Casino’s Secret Santa—–ECB Bought Record $91.6 Billion In November

The European Central Bank bought a record monthly amount of assets under its quantitative-easing program in November in an attempt to frontload purchases before market liquidity may dry up during the holiday season.The ECB bought a total of 85.4 billion euros ($91.6 billion) of debt last month even as the pace of purchases of government bonds, which represent the bulk of the program, dropped to 70.1 billion euros from 73 billion euro in October, ECB data published on Monday showed. An increase in monthly buying of covered bonds, asset-backed securities and corporate debt helped to make up for the difference.

Mind The Red Ponzi—-China’s FX Reserves Tumbled By $69 IN November, Highest Outflow Since January Crisis

Overnight China disclosed that, as expected, FX reserve liquidation has spiked with reserves falling by nearly $70 billion last month as the country’s central bank burned through more of its reserves in the fight to defend the renminbi from greater depreciation on the back of accelerating capital outflows. This was the largest decline since January.

Edward Snowden — A Brave Young Man and a Heroic American

Being patriotic doesn’t simply mean agreeing with your government. Being willing to disagree, particularly in a risky manner, is actually what we need more of today. When we have this incredible, often fact-free environment where politicians can make claims and then they’re reported as truth, how do we actually steer democracy? If we have facts, we can help facilitate democracy, and this is my role.

Another Drug War Disaster—-The DEA Is to Blame for America’s Opioid Overdose Epidemic

The truth is that many of those deaths are completely preventable and result not from painkillers, but from the Drug Enforcement Administration’s war on painkillers……….The Drug Enforcement Administration actively prevents patients from getting the prescription painkillers they need….Patients who can’t find legal opioids because of the DEA turn to heroin and other black market opioids. With legal prescription opioid medication, chronic pain sufferers know their dose. Without accurate labeling, they must estimate their drugs’ purity, which varies according to source. When they guess wrong, they overdose. Even worse, heroin has a smaller margin of error than prescription opioids. Meaning if you guess wrong with heroin, you’re more likely to die.

Another Recession Warning—–Restaurant Traffic Suffers First Decline In 5 Years

Traffic at U.S. fast-food restaurant fell 1% in the third quarter to mark the sector’s first traffic decline in five years, the industry tracker NPD Group said Tuesday….Over the past six months restaurant industry traffic growth has come to a standstill and quick service restaurants, which have been the traffic growth drivers, are now experiencing a slowdown in visits.’

Warning To The Donald—-You’ve Got Too Many Generals Already

President John F. Kennedy read the book after the Cuban missile crisis and found the scenario credible, probably because of the opposition and bizarre antics of Air Force Chief of Staff, General Curtis LeMay, during the crisis. Perhaps Donald Trump should become familiar with the book or the movie before he names one more retired general to his national security team.In a very few weeks, Trump has surrounded himself with a group of erratic advisers and has appointed several pugnacious and partisan figures to key national security positions.  As a result, the appointment of retired Marine General James Mattis has been welcomed by the mainstream media…… The media’s consensus appears to be that, since Mattis, a four-star general, once outranked the controversial national security advisor, General Michael Flynn, a three-star, and, unlike the President-elect, actually reads and collects books that he will bring a voice of reason to the policymaking circle in the White House. Not so fast!

Populism On The March Across Europe—-2017 Will Be The Year Of Reckoning

Demands from the gathering forces of European populism range from erecting border fences to dismantling the euro. Some insurgent parties want greater fiscal leeway from Europe. Others want their money back from neighboring nations. They share one thing: Their ideas would unravel the 60-year project of European integration…..A string of elections in 2017 will test whether the populist forces can beat mainstream politicians. A political revolt against Europe’s status quo that began in Greece and the U.K. will come to a head in France, Germany, the Netherlands and probably Italy. The outcome could eventually, if not immediately, determine the fate of the EU, with its open internal borders and common currency.

Indian Economy Crashes As Modi’s “Black Money” Seizure Of Cash Backfires

Amid social unrest and loss of faith in the nation’s currency, India’s economy has ground to a halt with its Composite PMI crashing by a record in the last month as demonetization strikes. However, even more problematic is that Indians have validated 82% of bank notes rendered worthless by PM Modi, dramatically undermining the government’s estimate of unaccounted wealth in the economy.