Week in Review

Quote of the week

“[T]he gov’t supposedly of the people, for the people, and er…by the peoople, wants, yay demands, complete secrecy/privacy and nearly worshipful trust in it’s doings while they also will demand we pay them for these additional, unsolicited and costly “services”, while the same said gov’t is openly bankrupt, both morally and financially, and has shown no desire nor inclination to track or monitor or govern itself by the same expectations and laws imposed on it’s citizenery.” – Anonymous (week of 01/09/2011)

Why Not Gun Control for the Government?

by Anthony Gregory

“The state will necessarily abuse the coercive tools we allow it to have. The overwhelming majority of private individuals, however, will use guns responsibly, and in many cases defensively. Violent private criminals can never be stopped with gun control, which only empowers the state and predators, both private and governmental, while disarming the victims. Despite all these truths, a truly terrible crime as the one that occurred in Arizona is used to bolster the case for tipping the scales of power further toward those who do not feel bound by the law. This, also despite the fact that the government did not fulfill one of its purported functions here in preempting or rapidly stopping a massacre. Trillions of dollars of government. Millions of prisoners. Thousands not returning from war. But safety as the government promises it is an illusion, and its inevitable failures to secure total safety will always be twisted into reasons for giving it more power.” more…

Peak Civilization: The Fall of the Roman Empire

by Ugo Bardi

“Historians – and not just historians – have been debating this subject and they came up with literally dozens of explanations: barbarian invasions, epidemics, lead poisoning, moral decadence and what have you. Which is the right one? Or are all these explanations right? This is the point that I would like to discuss today. I’ll be focusing on the interpretation of Joseph Tainter, based on the fact that empires and civilizations are ‘complex’ systems and try to use system dynamics to describe collapse.” more… [If you have the time this is quite interesting.]

Understanding the True Meaning and Impact of State Powers/Nullification

by Jeff Wright

“There seem to be a few significant mis- perceptions and conceptions about State’s Powers and Nullification that should be dispelled. There also seems to be some confusion in the way many people think of nullification generally. Those mis- perceptions and conceptions become self-evident when discussed.

“As I travel around the states, listen, read about and talk to elected officials and others concerning the principles surrounding state powers and Nullification it is apparent that there are a number of mis-perceptions and conceptions about the topic:” more…

New Move to Make Yuan a Global Currency

by Lingling Wei

“China has launched trading in its currency in the U.S. for the first time, an explicit endorsement by Beijing of the fast-growing market in the yuan and a significant step in the country’s plan to foster global trading in its currency.” more…

Regulars

  • The Bain Report: Opinions and News from Michigan and Beyond
  • Comics
  • Failure Friday
  • There was a single bank failure this week.
  • Amazon Best Sellers: #1 Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Sixth Edition by American Psychological Association; #2 The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman by Timothy Ferriss; #3 Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand

And now the numbers…

DOW Jones Industrials – 11,787.38 (+112.62/0.96%)
S&P 500 – 1,293.24 (+21.74/1.71%)
VIX – 15.46 (-1.68/-9.80%)
CSI 300 (China) – 3,091.862 (-74.762/-2.36%)
BSE 500 (India) – 7,360.01 (-296.48/-3.87%)
MICEX (Russia) – 1,744.74 (+56.75/3.36%)
BOVESPA (Brazil) – 70,940.219 (+883.016/1.26%)
Nikkei 225 (Japan) – 10,499.04 (-42.00/-0.40%)
RICI (Commodities) – 3,924.38 (+111.32/2.92%)
Gold/oz – 1,360.50 (-8.40/-0.61%)
Silver/oz – 28.32 (-0.351/-1.22%)
Copper/lb – 441.20 (+12.95/3.02%)
Oil/bbl (Brent) – 98.38 (+5.05/5.41%)
Wheat/bu (CBT) – 773.25 (-0.75/-0.10%)
Corn/bu – 648.75 (+53.75/9.03%)
Rough Rice (CBOT) – 14.01 (+0.38/2.79%)
EUR-USD – 1.3388 (+0.0481/3.73%)
USD-JPY – 82.8672 (-0.2816/-0.34%)
USD-HKD – 7.7743 (+0.0003/0.00%)
USD-BRL – 1.6851 (+0.0011/0.07%)
NZD-USD – 0.7661 (+0.0063/0.83%)
3 Month Treasury – 0.15 (+0.02/15.38%)
2 Year Treasury – 0.57 (-0.02/-3.39%)
10 Year Treasury – 3.32 (UNCHG)
30 Year Treasury – 4.53 (+0.05/1.12%)
3 Month LIBOR – 0.30 (UNCHG)
U.S. Public Debt (official) – 14,007,216,975,377.60 (-4,576,195,604.10/-0.03%)
Baltic Dry Index (BDIY:IND) – 1,439.00 (-80.00/-5.27%)

Just got back from Chicago yesterday. We went out to see the Chicago Boat Show, which was sort of disappointing. However, we spent an afternoon at the Art Institute and that was really cool. They have a whole room devoted to Monet, another to Picaso, and in general a large collection of impressionist paintings. I did not used to like that style, but I am developing a taste for them. I have found that looking at a painting from across the room and then walking quickly toward it is fun. Overall we spent about 5 hours there and took in a fair amount of the museum. Baby Girl enjoyed herself too.

A few news stories caught my eye this week. First it looks like India may be buying oil from Iran and settling in gold, and as noted above China is beginning to open up its currency. All off this continues to point toward a future where the U.S. Dollar is unseated as the sole reserve currency of the world.

It also looks like the Feds are up to more shenanigans, including a plan to renew the PATRIOT Act for another year and an Internet ID Card. The future is pretty clear here too. Day by day the U.S. Government is becoming more authoritarian.

However despite this march toward a more controlling government, there are some bright spots. For instance Montana is considering some new 10th Amendment legislation, which would require all federal agents to get permission from a county’s sheriff before being allowed to operate in that particular county.

That’s all for this week. Have a great weekend!

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