Ugly Thursday Morning

Stock futures way down, most commodities getting pummeled (aside from corn and grains)…

And I just finished re-reading The Big Short last night, so I am all kinds of chipper today. If you haven’t read that book you really really need to.

The Most Transparent, All of the Above Administration

that never was.

PYLE: Energy Department sneaks offshore moratorium past public

Jobs and oil-supply potential are shut down

While the Obama administration was taking a victory lap last week after the 5-4 Supreme Court decision to uphold the president’s signature legislative accomplishment, Obamacare, the Interior Department was using the media black hole to release a much-awaited five-year plan for offshore drilling. That plan reinstitutes a 30-year moratorium on offshore energy exploration that will keep our most promising resources locked away until long after President Obama begins plans for his presidential library.

Given the timing, it is clear that the self-described “all of the above” energy president didn’t want the American people to discover that he was denying access to nearly 98 percent of America’s vast energy potential on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS).

This guy is a disaster.

Ralph Lauren Team USA OLYMPIC Uniforms MADE in CHINA!!

Oh, well done U.S. Olympic Committee and Mr. Snooty Designer of Iconic American Threads. Could the optics ALONE be any more horrific?

Fabulous! Brilliant!

I’m waiting on World News Tonight to post the video, but here’s a little Tweet from them regarding the economic impact of a truly appalling, atrocious and tone-deaf decision:

This is being retweeted all over right now and one of the many I noticed in this embed is UFCW Local 400, who are, as they say on their homepage:

The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 400 represents workers in OH, KY, TN, WV, VA, MD and DC.

Oooo! I think everybody’s pissed off, eh?

Boo! Hiss!

ths update: And there we have it.
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From ABC News, here’s what those natty little outfits cost:

Beret – $55
Tie – $125
Belt – $85
Shirt – $425
Blazer – $795
Trousers – $295
Shoes – $165

Beret – $55
Scarf – $58
Belt – $85
Shirt – $179
Skirt – $498
Blazer – $598

Followed by an absolutely devastating, UNANSWERED question from American designer Nanette Lepore, interviewed in the report:

…“Why shouldn’t we have pride not only in the American athletes, but in the American manufacturers and laborers who are the backbone of our country?” Lepore said to ABC News.

“Why? What’s wrong? Why was that not a consideration?

It should have been the very FIRST consideration, especially in these trying times.

Well. You’d think.

You’ll Find Her Picture Illustrating “Entitlement Mentality”

in the dictionary, I have NO doubt. (Please, PLEASE WATCH the short video report at the link to get the full import.)

Florida will soon tighten up its Welfare laws trying to prevent the use of ‘Cash Assistance’ for things like alcohol and gambling. But the new rules may not be enough to stop the abuse.

Welfare benefits are administered through the State of Florida at Access offices like this one. The benefits, whether they be for food, or for non-food essentials, are loaded onto debit cards.

Things like alcohol and cigarettes can’t be directly purchased with the Electronic Benefit Cards.

…Lisa is one citizen who gets public assistance. “I don’t understand how the state can tell you what you can do with your money, that’s crazy. Whether it’s on the government assistance card or whatever, it’s your money,” she said.

Au contraire, Madam “Lisa”.

It’s MY money. major dad’s. And my neighbors’. That money belongs to anyone and every single American who had a job, filed a tax return and had money involuntarily removed FROM THEIR POCKETS to be transferred to yours.

And just like we theoretically have a say about what the government does with those removed, hard-earned funds ~ someone’s accountable for waste, fraud and abuse ~ when we extend what amounts to involuntary charity to make sure you eat and have a roof over your head ~ regardless of what life circumstances and choices, voluntary or no, brought you to this need ~ it’s STILL our money.

And we don’t owe you bingo, or cigarettes, or booze.

Keeping the roof over our own head is hard enough at the moment, and I’ll be damned if a lecture from you about the freedom to use the handout you seem to feel is your right as you see fit, without contributing a thing in return, but the glory of your indignance, will slide by with the usual eyeroll and disgusted snort.

Oh, no.

It’s OUR money. Sure. We want you to be all you and your kids could be ~ we want that for every single American, but YOU have to DO it.

WE did it.

I don’t mind feeding and clothing and housing when people need help, but DON’T YOU DARE tell me it’s “your” money.

My pocket straight to yours? MY money.

Don’t you dare.

ABC NEWS: Global Warming Accelerating!!!!!

The sky is falling, the seas are rising, the polar bears are floating, and it’s all YOUR fault: The government says so.

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ths update: Joe Bastardi was kind enough to supply some quantitative corrective measures (BIG data charts here) to ABC’s wild eyed prognostications for me:

I love charts. And real weather guys.

Quote Of The Day

I regard the CFTC as the get-away driver for this robbery.

According to a report in Reuters this guy

…intercepted and forged bank documents for more than two years to cover up hundreds of millions of dollars in missing money…

Read the Reuters article for how this supposedly occurred. If this is true, a lot of heads should roll at the NFA.

And Just Think ~ This Was BEFORE Small Businesses Heard About the Genius’s Bush Tax Cut Extension Plan!

I can only imagine what the survey will say after they digest the “And you RICH BASTARDS at $250K a year get to pay MORE”!

Small Business Swoon: Index Shows Confidence Is Dropping

Weak Sales Deflate Business Owners’ Optimism: Survey

Small business owners’ pessimism about the U.S. economy seems to be rising with temperature. For the second month in a row, the Small Business Optimism Index declined, according to a monthly survey by the National Federation of Independent Business.

“Optimism fell off last year at the same time, but not like this,” said William Dunkelberg, chief economist for the NFIB. The index was down three points in June, after a one-tenth of a point decline in May.

I think the phrase covering it is “In the tank, Frank”.

From Charlie Gasparino (who’s probably thrilled he gets to speak his mind now that he’s working for Fox):

…The Heritage Foundation recently crunched some of the Obama Treasury’s own statistics and found the following: The small businesses that make the most money and do the most hiring fall in the higher tax brackets that will get hammered the most by the Obama plan.

So while 97 percent of “all small businesses” may not see a tax hike, he really would hit the ones that count for job-creation.

As Heritage’s Curtis Dubay puts it, the Treasury’s own numbers show that the Obama tax plan takes aim at “91 percent of the income earned by small businesses that actually employ workers . . . The biggest most successful small business fall in the target of his tax increase.”

How’s that for “a step in the right direction”?

(H/T to Instapundit for the link)

Remember When It Was Just ALL The Rage…

Amongst the wealthy Leftist set to say “If Buuuuuuuush gets re-elected I’m giving up my US Citizenship” and, er, none of them actually did?

Funny how under Obama things have changed

(Reuters) – Denise Rich, the wealthy socialite and former wife of pardoned billionaire trader Marc Rich, has given up her U.S. citizenship – and, with it, much of her U.S. tax bill.

Rich, 68, a Grammy-nominated songwriter and glossy figure in Democratic and European royalty circles, renounced her American passport in November, according to her lawyer.

Her maiden name, Denise Eisenberg, appeared in the Federal Register on April 30 in a quarterly list of Americans who renounced their U.S. citizenship and permanent residents who handed in their green cards. (

By dumping her U.S. passport, Rich likely will save tens of millions of dollars or more in U.S. taxes over the long haul, tax lawyers say.

Principal trumps Principles every time, folks, especially with these types.

Remember her?

Rich’s ex-husband, commodities trader Marc Rich, fled the United States in 1983 when indicted on charges of tax evasion, fraud, racketeering and illegal trading of oil with Iran. They divorced in 1996.

Marc Rich received a presidential pardon in 2001 on President Bill Clinton’s last day in office. Federal prosecutors and Congress investigated the pardon, and in 2002 a House of Representatives committee concluded Denise Rich had swayed the action through donations to the Clinton library and campaign.

Yep, her.

Corzine Lite

PFGBest is now not so ‘best’

Remember when the entire segregated account fiasco was supposedly fixed in the aftermath of the November 2011 MF Global bankruptcy, and where regulators: the CFTC, the SEC, the CME, and anyone you asked, swore up and down this would never happen again? Turns out that 7 months later, the spirit of MFG has struck again, only this time with one letter switched: it is now known as PFG, as we suggested first 3 hours ago when we broke the story. From the just filed affidavit by Lauren Brinati who is working with the National Futures Association, which in turn has just filed notice prohibiting PFGBest from operating further, and freezing all of its accounts:

On or about June 29, 2012 PFG reported to NFA that it had approximately $400 million in segregated funds, of which more than $225 million were purportedly on deposit at U.S. Bank
On or about July 9, 2012, NFA received information indicating that PFG’s Chairman may have falsified bank records
On July 9, 2012, NFA made inquiry with US Bank and learned that rather than the $225 million that PFG had reported as being on deposit at US Bank just days earlier, PFG had only approximately $5 million on deposit at U.S. Bank.

As Mr. Valentine so sagely observed

Unlike politically-connected bungler bundler Corzine, who was last seen crest-fallen with a tepid latte in the Hamptons and looking for a party invite, it seems the founder of PFG has fallen on his sword

PFGBest on Monday told its foreign exchange and commodities customers that their accounts had been frozen after an apparent suicide attempt by its chairman. A few hours later, an industry body said about $220 million in customer funds were not in the brokerage’s bank accounts.

…The PFGBest disclosure came hours after owner Russell R. Wasendorf Sr, a 40-year veteran of futures markets, was found in his car near the company’s Iowa headquarters, having apparently attempted to commit suicide. He is in critical condition at the University of Iowa Hospitals, according to local news reports.

I hope he recovers, because I want him to go to jail if the above is true.

But really, who the hell is auditing these people

PFGBest was among the firms that scrambled to reassure customers of the safety of their funds last November just after MF Global’s collapse, posting a notice that said the firm “reports daily and monthly to regulators concerning customer segregated accounts.” A number of former MF Global customers also moved their trading accounts to PFGBest.

But by November, it seems, funds at the Iowa brokerage were already missing. The NFA said in Monday’s letter that previous customer account balances from February 2010 and March 2011 reported by the firm may have been inflated by as much as $190 million, with PFGBest only holding $10 million of a claimed $200 million.

In the letter, it said PFGBest clearing unit Peregrine Financial Group (PFG) had told the NFA just two weeks ago that it held $400 million in customer segregated funds, of which over $225 million was on deposit at the firm’s bank.

But on Monday, after receiving information that PFG’s founder and owner may have falsified bank records, the NFA said that only $5 million was on account at the bank days earlier.

Whoever signed off on these statements needs to go to jail.

Oh golly, this makes a lot of sense

“We had personal assurances from Wasendorf senior as recently as two weeks ago that they were not like MF Global,” said Lauren Nelson, director of communications for Attain Capital, an introducing broker specializing in managed futures in Chicago.

Well, gee, I guess my fears were misplaced then! We had his word on it

20 LOST GOP Senators: What a Surprise McCain and Gramnesty Are Two of Them

Just when you thought you could have a little faith, they remind you there’s some serious housecleaning that needs to be done.

20 Republicans set to uphold controversial UN treaty

Upon the advice of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, President Obama has confirmed his intention to sign two controversial U.N. treaties — the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST) and the so called “small arms” treaty.

Although many citizens and elected representatives are sounding the alarm about the small arms treaty, such as this entry Sunday at the Daily Paul, some political observers note that the treaty is unlikely to pass the Senate. But a very different scenario is developing for the Law of the Sea.

Twenty Republican senators are set to join with Democrats in upholding LOST.

…The 20 Republicans who are apparently set to uphold the treaty are Enzi, McConnell, Hutchison, Toomey, Johanns, Ayotte, Graham, McCain, Lugar, Kirk, Snowe, Collins, Murkowski, Isakson, Grassley, Portman, Corker, Cochran, Brown, and Alexander.

In 1983 President Ronald Reagan rejected LOST outright due to encroachments on U.S. sovereignty. Thus, the question arises as to why these 20 Republicans would be indicating support for a treaty that Reagan saw as an international attempt to usurp American sovereignty and thus supersede the U.S. Constitution.

The small arms treaty, on the other hand, is facing a much more difficult task in gaining the approval of the Senate. Although it is possible to muster 67 votes to approve, too many Democrats are facing reelection in states where gun rights are important. Democrats now have a 53 seat majority. Even if all of the Democrats voted in favor, 14 Republicans would have to join them in order for the measure to pass.

Cliff Diving, Using the Obama Fiscal Flop

An inverted back one-and-a-half pint full o’ hope and change.

That ‘Fiscal Cliff’ You’re Worried About? It’s Already Here

The much-bandied about “Fiscal Cliff” is already here, according to economists and investors, as businesses curb spending in anticipation of the higher tax rates and reduced spending set to be enacted at the end of this year.

“The fiscal cliff is not just a year-end story,” wrote Michelle Meyer and the economics team at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in a report to clients. “We expect the uncertainty shock to be realized in the coming months, escalating before the election.”

The economists argue in the report that businesses have already started to curb investment and hiring plans in the face of this tightening of fiscal policy, further cutting into GDP.

In fact, Bank of America believes that the first quarter economic growth of 1.9 percent will prove to be the best three-month period of the year. They see 1.5 percent annual growth in the second quarter and just a 1.3 percent GDP in the current quarter.

Nothing like having the Duffer-in-Chief in charge! You BET I’d pick this miserable turd over a competent business guy like Romney any day of the week.

Well. Almost any day.

Except, possibly, November 6, 2012.

🙂 Change, baby.

“If I Wanted America to Fail”

Food for thought.

Florida Does Have Open Arms and No Income tax

you know, besides all that sunshine and pretty sand.

In Maryland, Higher Taxes Chase Out Rich: Study

A new report says wealthy Maryland residents may be moving out due to recent tax hikes – a finding that is sure to escalate the battle over taxing the American rich.

The study, by the anti-tax group Change Maryland, says that a net 31,000 residents left the state between 2007 and 2010, the tenure of a “millionaire’s tax” pushed through by Gov. Martin O’Malley. The tax, which expired in 2010, in imposed a rate of 6.25 percent on incomes of more than $1 million a year.

The Change Maryland study found that the tax cost Maryland $1.7 billion in lost tax revenues. A county-by-county analysis by Change Maryland also found that the state’s wealthiest counties also had some of the largest population outflows.

In total, Maryland has added 24 new taxes or fees in recent years, Change Maryland says. Florida, which has no income-tax, has been a large recipient of Maryland’s exiled wealthy.

Your Go-To Resource List For When the “What Has the Republican House Done About Jobs?” Lameness Rears Its Head

…in any discussion of Obama’s “Recovery Bummers”. You have OVER THIRTY job-friendly, employer, employee or business empowering bills PASSED by the House of Representatives at your fingertips.

Empower Small Business Owners

Small business owners are being bogged down by burdensome regulations from Washington that prevent job creation and hinder economic growth. We must remove onerous regulations that are redundant, harm small businesses, and impede private sector investment and job creation.

As well as precisely whether they either made it into law, or languish…”STUCK IN SENATE” ~ that would be on the President’s team’s watch. Feel free to point the fact out.

Thanks to House GOP Whip (@GOPWhip), Kevin McCarthy, for the heads up.

Rising Sun Sets

Not pretty news out of Japan this morning

Japan’s core machinery orders were expected to post a modest -2.6% drop. Instead they had a worse collapse than anything seen in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster, plunging by a stunning 14.8% . And the kick in the groin cherry on top was the current account surplus plunged by 62.6%: consensus forecast: -14.5%. The Japanese economy has once again ground to a halt, only this time it has no earthquake or nuclear explosion to blame. This time it is the entire world’s fault, where demand has collapsed proportionately. As a reminder the BOJ expanded its QE yet again on April 27. Must be time for another QE because this time will certainly be different after more than 30 years of failures.

Larry Kudlow’s in the Kitchen

I know-oh-oh-oh!

Obama’s Goose Is Cooked
He got another rubber chicken for jobs. Bring on Romney’s filet mignon.

…So much for Obamanomics. Didn’t work. Still isn’t working. As the JEC put it, spending stimulus, housing bailouts, auto bailouts, financial bailouts, cash for clunkers, cash for caulkers, and $5 trillion in deficit spending left the Obama recovery dead last in modern times.

Whatever happened to the great boom of the ’80s and ’90s, when the animal spirits were strong and the American economy wasn’t held hostage by Europe or China? In an odd twist, both Obama and his top economist Alan Krueger blame “problems built up over decades.” Does that mean they blame Clinton? Reagan?

For nearly 25 years — during those bad old decades — the economy increased 3.3 percent annually. Unemployment dropped from 11 percent to 6 percent to 5 percent to below 4 percent. Obama would swoon for numbers like that. But those statistics come from the era when big government was over, when pro-market forces stopped the expansion of Leviathan, and when marginal tax rates were slashed to grow the economy….

Ernest Borgnine Has Left Us

…after 95 really good years. I always thought he’d be a helluva a cool guy to live next door to.

This is the trailer from one of my favorite movies of his, even though he had a smallish part. You can tell he had a great time in this cast of movie giants making a GUY film.

…Borgnine joined the United States Navy in 1935, after graduation from James Hillhouse High School[6] in New Haven, Connecticut. He was discharged in 1941, but re-enlisted when the United States entered World War II and served until 1945 (a total of ten years), reaching the rank of Gunner’s Mate 1st Class. He served aboard the destroyer USS Lamberton (DD-119). His military decorations included the Navy Good Conduct Medal, American Defense Service Medal with Fleet Clasp, American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal and the World War II Victory Medal.

In a British Film Institute interview about his life and career, Borgnine said of the war:

After World War II we wanted no more part in war. I didn’t even want to be a boy-scout. I went home and said that I was through with the Navy and so now, what do we do? So I went home to mother, and after a few weeks of patting on the back and, ‘You did good,’ and everything else, one day she said, ‘Well?’ like mothers do. Which meant, ‘Alright, you gonna get a job or what?’ [7]

In 2004, Borgnine received the honorary rank of Chief Petty Officer from the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Terry D. Scott—the US Navy’s highest ranking enlisted sailor at the time—for Borgnine’s support of the Navy and naval families worldwide

What a FULL life.

Now, THAT’S a man.

Pensacola’s Own “East Hill Honey Company”

major dad and I met Thomas yesterday at the Palafox Market, and I scored some of his Wildflower honey.

It is simply divine.

Quote Of The Day

It’s nice to see some class and dignity in sports

“Aggie played so well. That’s why she has had such a great career, and so young,” Williams told the crowd. “You guys should give her another round of applause because she’s amazing and she did an amazing job today.”

–Serena Williams speaking to the crowd after beating Agnieszka Radwanska to win at Wimbledon today

The Perfect Economic Statistic For This Administration

Kind of sums it all up

The economy created just 80,000 jobs in June, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. But that same month, 85,000 workers left the workforce entirely to enroll in the Social Security Disability Insurance program, according to the Social Security Administration.

The disability ranks have outpaced job growth throughout President Obama’s economic recovery. While the economy has created 2.6 million jobs since June 2009, fully 3.1 million workers signed up for disability benefits.

Boy That Laser-Like Focus On Jobs Is Really Paying Off

Ain’t it?

U.S. payrolls expanded by 80,000 net positions in June as the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.2 percent, new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows.

Below, key output from the report.

Net Change: +80K

Private Payroll Change: +84K

Manufacturing Change: +11K

Unemployment Rate: 8.2 percent

Average Hourly Earnings (MoM): +0.3 percent

Average Weekly Hours Worked: 34.5 hours

Here’s what the Street is looking for:

Net Change: +100K

Private Payroll Change: +106K

Manufacturing Change: +7K

Unemployment Rate: 8.2 percent

Average Hourly Earnings (MoM): +0.2 percent

Average Weekly Hours Worked: 34.4 hours

Yeah, total SUCKAGE.

Hell Is For Children


(h/t Maggie’s Farm)

Happy Birthday To That True American Icon:


Spam turns 75 years old this July, and it’s celebrating with a new mascot and a party at its chief US manufacturing plant. Once a staple of soldiers’ diets, Spam’s reluctant legacy may be as the clown of the US food world.

…Burger King and McDonald’s locations in Hawaii both feature Spam on their menus, and Spam musubi – a sort of spam in sushi form, paired with white rice and wrapped in seaweed – is a signature dish of the islands.


I Hope Romney Remembers to Point Out Obama’s Magnificent Leadership Skills During the Gulf Oil Spill

Besides asking any of us down here, he could get a few starting pointers from this group if need be.

Oil Spill Timeline from RightChange on Vimeo.


Maybe I should have checked the forecast before Daughter went to Virginia yesterday…

(h/t ZeroHedge)

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