Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Vermont towns stranded after Hurricane Irene passes through

http://news.yahoo.com/killer-storm-leaves-vt-homeowners-towns-stranded-063750835.html

QUOTE: Flooding isolated entire towns in Vermont and New York, some communities warily watched swollen rivers and more than 2.5 million people from North Carolina to Maine lacked electricity Tuesday, three days after Hurricane Irene churned up the Eastern Seaboard. 


QUOTE #2: "Stranded, nowhere to go," said Martin Saylor, 57, standing by the Rock River on Monday, waiting for his brother to bring in supplies. "Don't want to leave my house because I don't know who's going to break in or whatever. I just don't know what to do."

This is the real reason to prep.  Not that there's anything wrong with trying to be ready for the dead rising from their graves, alien invasions, or Al Gore showing up on your doorstep to check your thermostat.

Suspected North Korean cyberattack on a bank raises fears for S. Korea, allies

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/suspected-north-korean-cyber-attack-on-a-bank-raises-fears-for-s-korea-allies/2011/08/07/gIQAvWwIoJ_story.html

How long until these kinds of covert attacks lead to full-fledged warfare?  Sadly, I believe that day may be growing nearer.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Market crash 'could hit within weeks', warn bankers

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/8721151/Market-crash-could-hit-within-weeks-warn-bankers.html

I've been reading and re-reading this article (and the accompanying comments) over the past few days, and was reminded of it when Survivalblog.com posted a link to it yesterday.  While it's hard to know how to interpret media stories at times (as in what the real reason behind the story is) if you take the various people quoted at their word it is a truly harrowing article. 
For example:

QUOTE: "I think we are heading for a market shock in September or October that will match anything we have ever seen before," said a senior credit banker at a major European bank'

If you read some of the various online survival forums you'll notice that quite a lot of people seem to believe that there is an intentional attempt to collapse the current system in order to replace it with something else.  I'm wondering if maybe they're on to something... 

U.N. agency warns of possible bird flu resurgence

http://news.yahoo.com/u-n-agency-warns-possible-bird-flu-resurgence-103648116.html

QUOTE #1: The United Nations warned of a possible major resurgence of bird flu and said a mutant strain of the H5N1 virus was spreading in Asia and elsewhere. The UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Monday urged increased surveillance and preparation for a potential outbreak of the virus, which it says has infected 565 people since it first appeared in 2003, killing 331 of them.

QUOTE #2: "Preparedness and surveillance remain essential ... no one can let their guard down with H5N1," he added.

"Surveillance"?  I wonder whatever do they mean?  It will be interesting to see if the media treats this potential outbreak the same as the Swine Flu and Hurricane Irene...

Friday, August 26, 2011

Fukushima radiation leak equal to 168x that of Hiroshima

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/japan/8722400/Fukushima-caesium-leaks-equal-168-Hiroshimas.html

I am always interested in whatever news is being quietly put out under the umbrella of a major story, in this case Hurricane Irene.  I would say that the news coming out of Fukushima continues to be concerning despite the fact that it has dropped off the news map for most major media.  If nothing else it begs the question of what could/will happen if the power gets knocked out to some of the eastern US nuclear reactors because of earthquakes/hurricanes/etc?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sesame Street Guide to Hurricanes (For Kids)

http://www.sesamestreet.org/parents/topicsandactivities/toolkits/hurricane

I probably don't talk enough on the podcast about specific issues pertaining to children, although I do try to touch on such issues from time to time.  One thing that has come up in the last few days is the idea that kids can be quite traumatized by natural disasters such as hurricanes, so the above link might be useful for families living in or near the areas that lay in the path of Hurricane Irene. 

PBS video on the Great Hurricane of 1938

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/hurricane/player/

OVERVIEW: "As the storm made its way across the Atlantic and up the eastern seaboard, there was little warning. Radar had not been invented. The National Weather Bureau predicted it would blow itself out at North Carolina, but it didn't. No one had ever seen a storm like this.  Rhode Island fishermen, residents and vacationers recount what it was like to live through one of the greatest natural disasters recorded in North America."

Might be worth watching in light of Hurricane Irene's path at present...


UH OH: Hurricane Irene turns back towards the Eastern Seaboard

http://www.weather.com/weather/hurricanecentral/article/hurricane-irene-major-northeast-threats_2011-08-23


If you're following the unfolding story of Hurricane Irene you've probably noticed that its path keeps changing going from a major threat to heading out to sea to swinging back towards the Atlantic coast of the US.  Well, as of today it's looking like it could be a MAJOR threat to the heavily populated region along the Eastern Seaboard.  Not good.... 
Stay safe out there. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

AP: Libya's deadliest weapons not yet corralled

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_LIBYA_WEAPONS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2011-08-23-18-03-12

Now from the "here's something else to worry about" department we have this assessment from the experts that there are still a large number of WMDs floating around in Libya.

QUOTE: "No one can be sure who controls the Libyan government's weapons stockpiles, a stew of deadly chemicals, raw nuclear material and some 30,000 shoulder-fired rockets that officials fear could fall into terrorists' hands in the chaos of Moammar Gadhafi's downfall or afterward."

QUOTE #2: "U.S. and allied officials say chemical and nuclear stockpiles appear to be still under the control of what's left of the Libyan government despite rebel military advances into the capital. That may or may not be reassuring. It depends on whether Gadhafi loyalists, increasingly desperate, adhere to international agreements not to use or move the material."

With their backs against the wall there's no telling what desperate people might do.  At the same time, if these sinister weapons fall into rebel hands they could ultimately be passed on to some other nasty people.  
Interesting times, folks... 

5.9 Earthquake Rocks East Coast

http://news.yahoo.com/quake-rocks-washington-area-felt-east-coast-181550612.html

QUOTE: "A 5.9 magnitude earthquake centered in Virginia forced evacuations of all the monuments in Washington and rattled nerves from the southern state of Georgia to Martha's Vineyard, the Massachusetts island in the northeast where President Barack Obama is vacationing. No injuries were immediately reported."

This is after a once-in-40-years earthquake hit Colorado yesterday. I'll have to do a bit more research to find out if it's true, but I've been hearing that both of these quakes are roughly on the same latitude as the big one in Japan back in March.  If so, there may indeed be something weird happening....  Regardless, it's a good reminder to check up on your earthquake preps no matter where you live. 

TNR Writer: Let’s Be Honest: We’re in a Depression, Not a Recession, And There’s No End In Sight

http://www.tnr.com/article/economy/94055/posner-recession-depressions-entitlements

If you're not familiar with The New Republic just know that it is a left-of-center periodical that generally does all it can to support, enable or otherwise assist the current Presidential Administration.

QUOTE: "If the notion that we are merely living through the aftereffects of a mere “recession” that ended in 2009 sounds somewhat ridiculous, that’s because it is. If we were being honest with ourselves, we would call this a depression. That would certainly better convey both the severity of our problems, and the fact that those problems have no evident solutions."

QUOTE #2: "So what can be done now? Probably nothing. Anything that involves spending, such as a new stimulus program, would come too late to be effective. Measures that would not involve spending, such as devaluing the currency (which the Federal Reserve could do by buying a great many bonds, thus flooding the world with dollars), could stimulate our exports and hence production and hence employment and reduce imports (which would further help domestic production), but they are too risky given the interdependence of our economy and the economies of the rest of the world. Europe is staggering and would be hurt by our devaluing, and our banks and other financial institutions are heavily involved in those European economies."

Let's face it.  When leftist publications are beginning to openly use the "D" word despite the negative effects it can have on "their guy" it's very likely that we're about to see awareness drastically increase as to the severity of the current financial mess we all face.  What will people start doing as they wake up?  Buy a bunch of food?  Bullets?  Band-aids?  What will that do to the cost of 'survival items'?  More money chasing fewer products generally drives up prices, all the more so when inflation is running so high.  So.... buy anything you need now at today's prices and not only will you have what you need on hand but you'll be purchasing at today's lower prices instead of tomorrow's inflating levels. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

Heart-attack proof diet?

http://www.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/08/19/heart.attack.proof.diet/index.html?&hpt=hp_c2

While not as exciting as discussing Main Battle Rifles or water filters (well, maybe that's debatable) personal health is an important part of a survival plan.  I'm not educated enough yet on the diet that is discussed in this article to really form an assessment but it sounds interesting to me at this early stage.  I have often heard that there are other cultures around the world that do not have certain diseases common in the West so it makes sense that diet might be the primary part of why.  The following quote shows how different this particular diet is, however:
QUOTE: "The Esselstyn diet is tough for most Americans to swallow: no meat, no eggs, no dairy, no added oils." 
The "no meat" part isn't that difficult for me as I don't eat a lot of it anyway, and almost never red meat.  But I do ingest eggs on frequent occasions and drink milk at times.  Sounds like more or less a Vegan diet is what they're pushing.  Still, if it really would remove the possibility of heart attack in most people (it claims to do so in everyone) the tradeoffs might be worth it.  

Bloodbath coming in Libya (not to mention terrorist attacks elsewhere)?

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/middleeast/2011/08/16/and-now-for-a-real-slaughter/

If you have the stomach for it, read the entire piece.  It's a good reminder that different cultures around the world are quite different in their ways of thinking.  This author really captures how those cultural viewpoints could ultimately result in an unbelievable slaughter by the side "we've" been supporting.  But what is really chilling is the final paragraph:

QUOTE: "If Gaddafi has a way of reaching out and slapping us as he himself hits the turf, I suspect he will use it. American interests and personnel, especially abroad (possibly especially in places like Aviano Air Base in Italy), may be entering a notably dangerous period. Guys, look out for large green books with bombs inside."

I remember Lockerbie all too well.  We'll see if this author is right in the coming weeks, but for goodness sake I hope not. 

Announcing the Survival Gun Show on the Gun Rights Radio Network!

http://gunrightsradio.com/2011/08/19/survival-gun-show-%E2%80%93-episode-1/

You've heard me discuss my new show over at the Gun Rights Radio Network specifically covering the topic of Survival Guns.  Well, just above this paragraph is the link to the first episode.  I am finishing up three additional episodes and thus will have five episodes ready to go here at the beginning (two have already been submitted) and plan to do two episodes a week.  Check it out when you get a chance!
Thanks,
Chip :)


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Dow plunges 450 points (again!)

http://www.cnbc.com/id/44188136

QUOTE: '"Is this selloff really a surprise? The macro data continues to paint a dire fiscal future for the world—Investors are na├»ve to think this is a 'rough patch,'" said Todd Schoenberger, managing director of LandColt Trading. "The ingredients are in place for a prolonged period of the bears controlling this market. Investors need to proceed with caution.' 

After all the back-and-forth we've been seeing it's no surprise that we're down again in the markets, but what is something I can't figure out is where is ANY good news to cause the markets to go up at all as in recent days?  When I look at nearly every economic indicator it seems to project dour news, so what are other people seeing?  I hope I'm wrong.  I truly do.  Being a survivalist/prepper-type does not mean you have to be an eternal pessimist but almost anywhere you look at present shows a lot of dark financial times in the near future.  For that reason, these massive drops aren't really that shocking to me.

Seven killed in series of terrorist attacks in southern Israel

http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/seven-killed-in-series-of-terrorist-attacks-in-southern-israel-1.379309

QUOTE: "Seven people were killed and at least 26 people were wounded Thursday in a series of terrorist attacks on Israeli targets approximately 20 kilometers north of the southern city of Eilat, close to the border with Egypt." 

Leading up to the UN vote on Palestinian statehood in September I wouldn't be surprised to see a few more of these.  It's especially interesting to read the comments section of this article to see the propaganda being spewed (at least it's propaganda in my own humble opinion....)

Monday, August 15, 2011

AP: Somalia famine aid stolen, UN investigating

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AF_EAST_AFRICA_FAMINE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2011-08-15-12-20-05

QUOTE: "Sacks of grain, peanut butter snacks and other food staples meant for starving Somalis are being stolen and sold in markets, an Associated Press investigation has found, raising concerns that thieving businessmen are undermining international famine relief efforts in this nearly lawless country."

What's the takeaway from this?  Perhaps how things might work if/when things are plunged into lawlessness.  Those who are planning on the .GOV to take care of their needs are deluding themselves.  Even if the authorities want to the "Law of the Jungle" often is how things end up working, it would seem. 

Hot Towns, Summer in the City

http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2011/08/14/teen-arrested-for-stabbing-incident-following-event-at-erie-lanes-bowling-alley-in-philadelphia/
http://m.kansascity.com/kcstar/db_41534/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=Ed5OquhD&detailindex=0&pn=0&ps=5&full=true#display
http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/crime/8583-flash-mob-attacks-at-wis-fair-police-to-file-hate-crimes-charges

Although not quite to the level of what we've seen in London recently it's obvious to anyone paying attention that there is an epidemic of "flash mob" violence in some of the larger US cities.  One of the most disturbing quotes in the above stories is the following:  
"Police in Wisconsin will seek hate-crimes charges against a black teenager who confessed that race hatred motivated his attacks on whites at the Wisconsin State Fair on August 4. And newly released 911 tapes indicate that a black security guard at the fair watched while a black flash mob pulverized a white boy." 
Where is the media blaming Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson for this behavior?  They were so quick to cast blame after Rep. Giffords was shot, why not take on those who still try to use race to divide our country?  I truly hope for a day when Rev. King's words about people being judged by their character and not the color of the skin will come to pass.  But in the meantime for those living in cities it's important to keep an eye out for issues that can blow up into major problems overnight.   

Sunday, August 14, 2011

ABC News: Boy Scout safe after cold night in Utah wilderness

http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/national_world&id=8306076

A great story about the importance of knowledge above everything else in terms of disaster readiness.  This quote especially jumped out at me: 'Ropelato was only wearing jeans and a shirt, and had no food or water. He depended on his survival skills, saying he built a lean-to shelter out of tree branches and covered himself in dirt to stay warm. Temperatures dipped to 31 degrees in the area overnight. "He did everything right that he had learned at Scouts, not from me," said Ropelato's mother, Dawn Ropelato.' 

Teach your children well, as Crosby, Stills and Nash used to say....

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Amazon.com bans sales of bats to Brits wanting to protect themselves

http://www.prisonplanet.com/amazon-disarms-brits-by-banning-self-defense-items.html

On today's episode about "Community Defense" I talked about how folks in Britain are purchasing tools like baseball bats to have for personal protection.  Now it appears that Amazon is banning the sale of such items.  Seriously?  Oh.... my.... word....  Even after the police were ordered to stand down and let the riots happen?  You have to be kidding. 

Interesting blog post-"A Prelude to the Financial Collapse"

http://www.preparednesspro.com/blog/a-prelude-to-the-financial-collapse/

I found this to be compelling reading and it looks like it will be part of a series on the topic of why a financial collapse is almost a certainty at this point.  (Part two can be found here....)  My favorite quote of the whole piece, however, was this surprisingly optimistic sentence: "Thriving is still a realistic option for you and your family if you will move forward in pursuit of peaceful independence, not panic."  Something we should definitely keep in mind. :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Stock market drops 520 points

http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=^DJI

After surging 400+ points yesterday now we have the third -500 or more trading day out of the past five.  What does such an up-and-down (mostly down) pattern tell us?  I'm not certain, other than market volatility is at a high level and there is a lot of concern about the condition of the world economy.  Our family's personal investment strategy is to not have too many assets in any particular sector but to leave alone what we have and play "the long game."  However, there's a teeny, itsy, bitsy part of me that feels all this uncertainty is just part of the current climate and might be an indicator of some very drastic issues to come.  So my advice is to plan for your family's short-term needs (water, food, shelter, safety & security) and then make your financial plans around that (having some cash on hand if possible for further addressing short-term needs). 

AP: Gold shoots past record $1,800 an ounce

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_GOLD_RECORD?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2011-08-10-13-28-52

QUOTE: "The price of gold surpassed $1,800 an ounce Wednesday for the first time as investors pulled their money out of stocks and snapped up precious metals contracts. Gold is fast becoming a favorite port in a storm of uncertainty. Investors are clinging to what they see as a hedge against volatile stock and currency markets. December gold contracts backed off their highs, and traded around $1,785 an ounce during midday trading after reaching a record $1,801 an ounce earlier in the day on the New York Mercantile Exchange."

No comment needed...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Coming to America soon?: London burns....

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2023874/LONDON-RIOTS-David-Cameron-returns-home-police-face-gangs-petrol-bombs.html
http://abcnews.go.com/International/britain-burning-riots-rattle-london-spread-uk/story?id=14260729
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-14458424

Updates on the situation here: http://news.sky.com/home/

I've been watching the devastation unfold in London over the past few nights and it is mind-blowing.  To any listeners there in the UK (and I know we have a few) I say "stay safe".  Here's a time when it would be awfully convenient to be able to own something to protect yourself, isn't it?  This is why we can never, ever, ever give up our God-given rights outlined in the 2nd Amendment.
I see this coming to the US in the fairly near future if unemployment, economic collapse, etc. really start to rear their ugly heads.  Think about it.  If people are doing this with full stomachs because an alleged gang leader got shot by police, what will they do when they're starving and willing to kill over a can of beans?

Dow surges then drops then surges again....

http://www.cnbc.com/id/44073098

Very volatile day in the markets today after the bloodletting of the past few trading days.  I predicted to my wife we would see this if the Fed hinted they "might" do something.  My guess is they will say they're going to see how things play out, which will cause everything to drop substantially again and then they will be "forced" to step in.  Interesting times....

Sunday, August 7, 2011

REUTERS: Power companies prepare as solar storms set to hit Earth

http://news.yahoo.com/power-companies-prepare-solar-storms-set-hit-earth-144759933.html

QUOTE: "Three large explosions from the Sun over the past few days have prompted U.S. government scientists to caution users of satellite, telecommunications and electric equipment to prepare for possible disruptions over the next few days. "The magnetic storm that is soon to develop probably will be in the moderate to strong level," said Joseph Kunches, a space weather scientist at the Space Weather Prediction Center, a division of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). He said solar storms this week could affect communications and global positioning system (GPS) satellites and might even produce an aurora visible as far south as Minnesota and Wisconsin."

It's interesting when you see the confluence of certain events, and now there's this on top of the various economic things taking place.  It doesn't look like it will be a huge problem (maybe mess with some GPS satellites) but I've learned that scientists aren't always right (for example, look at the annual hurricane predictions which have been WAY off in recent years).  Probably not "One Second After" but still worth keeping an eye on. 

Friday, August 5, 2011

And so it begins.... The US is downgraded by S&P

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/sandp-considering-first-downgrade-of-us-credit-rating/2011/08/05/gIQAqKeIxI_print.html

What will this mean?  We'll talk it about it on the next podcast. (Notice the late Friday afternoon rollout of this as well.  Everything negative about this current administration always seems to be released late Friday afternoons.  Coincidence?)

WSJ: US Government bracing for 'imminent' downgrade



http://blogs.wsj.com/marketbeat/2011/08/05/cnbc-government-bracing-for-imminent-downgrade/

It's obvious now that the debt ceiling charade was all a lie.  What will next week look like?  

Video on survival food storage

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTexMTQd2eQ

It's only about 14-15 minutes long but seems to cover quite a bit of useful information for those just starting out.  Thought I would share... :)

CNN: Food stamp use rises to record 45.8 million

http://money.cnn.com/2011/08/04/pf/food_stamps_record_high/index.htm?iid=HP_River

QUOTE: "Nearly 15% of the U.S. population relied on food stamps in May, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. The number of Americans using the government's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) -- more commonly referred to as food stamps -- shot to an all-time high of 45.8 million in May, the USDA reported. That's up 12% from a year ago, and 34% higher than two years ago."

34% higher than two years ago?  That is a huge increase.  Metrics like these give a much clearer picture of what the economy is doing than the manipulated job statistics released today.  Can you think of one real indicator out there right now showing things going in a positive way?  Try as I might, I can't.  Nothing real, that is....

CNBC: Beneath Jobs Report Surface Lie Some Ugly Truths

http://www.cnbc.com/id/44033486


QUOTE: "But the job creation number was positive and the unemployment rate went down, right? So how does that work? It’s a product of something the government calls “discouraged workers,” or those who were unemployed but not out looking for work during the reporting period. This is where the numbers showed a really big spike—up from 982,000 to 1.119 million, a difference of 137,000 or a 14 percent increase. These folks are generally not included in the government’s various job measures."

What does it say that the media is trumpeting a .1% decrease in the unemployment rate that has only come about because a large number of people are giving up looking for work?  We live in interesting times.....

Solar flares may impact communications this weekend

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0811/60756.html

I found the following part of the article interesting:

QUOTE: "Magnetic disruptions also have the potential to affect electrical grids. However, Kunches added that power grid managers have anticipated this wave, using tools such as resistors and capacitors to prepare for the impact of a solar explosion. The potential impact of such storms is historically severe, Bogdan said, citing telegraph stations that reportedly burned down in a record storm in 1859. Moreover, Bogdan said the increasing frequency of solar storms could induce an aurora visible in the mainland United States if the current wave is strong enough. He said that during the record 1859 storm, an aurora was seen as far south as Havana, Cuba, and Brisbane, Australia."

I just reviewed a book yesterday about the effects of an EMP which could be replicated by a solar storm.  While this one is probably not "the Big One" of Coronal Mass Ejections that could happen someday so it's worth keeping tabs on.  

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Missing Oregon hiker found alive after three days in the woods

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/08/03/missing-oregon-hiker-found-alive-after-three-days-in-forest/#ixzz1Ty2ixHzR


Some key quotes:


QUOTE #1: "A woman who was missing for three nights in an Oregon forest after becoming separated from her boyfriend and tumbling off a cliff was found alive and rescued Tuesday after subsisting on berries and bugs to survive. Pamela Salant of Portland says she ate berries, drank from a creek and also tried to scoot to safety on her bottom because she couldn’t walk."

QUOTE #2: "The Oregonian reported that Salant got lost Saturday when she and Essig dropped their gear near Bear Lake and went looking for a camping spot. After her fall, Salant began following a creek, trying to reach the Columbia River and get help, Hood River Country Sheriff’s Detective Matt English said. She ended up in a steep drainage, about a mile and a half from the lake. "She had fallen off a cliff, a pretty high cliff," Essig described. "She knew she had to get to water, so she scooted her way down this steep hill and found water and drank from a stream." Salant survived the four days and three nights wearing only shorts and a tank top."


QUOTE #3: "He says her adrenaline and will to survive helped save her."

You see, as that last quote demonstrates it's not about all the gear or what kind of MBR you can afford to purchase or whether you can afford to buy a distant retreat.  Quite simply put, if you have a drive and a desire to make it through difficult circumstances you will.  Not that it hurts to have a Survival Plan, of course. :)

 

EU President: Eurozone debt crisis is spreading

http://news.sky.com/home/business/article/16043146

QUOTE: "In a letter to European Union leaders, Jose Manuel Barroso said: "Whatever the factors behind the lack of success, it is clear that we are no longer managing a crisis just in the euro area periphery." He called for a re-assessment of all elements of the eurozone's current and future bailout funds. And he told them the eurozone needs to convince markets that it can respond to the debt crisis.
The comments contributed to another day of sell-offs on the FTSE 100, which is on course to have lost more than £100bn in value over the past 5 trading sessions."

And no surprise: QUOTE #2: "Gold reached another record high of $1,677.9 as investors made a renewed bid for safe havens."

Consider your good buddy Chip to be one of those people who is concerned that the next big financial crisis will start with Spain and Italy.  They are already paying escalating interest rates (which becomes a vicious cycle) and it's looking like things are coming to a head.  

Raw milk co-ops raided by SWAT team (once again....)

http://thehealthyadvocate.com/2011/08/03/rawesome-raw-milk-farm-raided-again/

This sort of thing seems so silly, especially in the financial times we live in, that it's hard to believe that rather than sending a nicely-worded letter they choose to sweep in a a full SWAT team.  The only thing my mind can think of is they want to send a message.  Scary times.  At least Ron Paul is standing up for these folks.  Maybe something good can come of these travesties if it causes people to wake up to some of the government overreaches that are taking place. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

AP: Unemployment rose in nearly all US cities

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Unemployment-rose-in-nearly-apf-3394283988.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=1&asset=&ccode=

QUOTE: "The Labor Department says the unemployment rate rose in 345 large metro areas. It dropped in 20 cities and was unchanged in seven. That's worse than May, when the rate rose in only 210 cities and a sharp reversal from April, when unemployment actually fell in nearly all metro areas."

"Green shoots".  "Recovery Summer".   
This does not look good, folks.  Just wait until they revise those figures down and we see how bad things really are.

Peter Schiff: Avoid Disaster, Get Out of U.S. Assets

http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/breakout/avoid-disaster-u-assets-peter-schiff-150725617.html

Peter Schiff seems to be a fairly bright guy and has been right quite a lot of the time from what I've seen over the past few years.  The following advice he gives is very eye-opening and sadly I believe he's probably right: "We're back in recession. What are they [the Fed] gonna do? That's all they know -- to print money. Unfortunately, that's the source of our problems. It's like trying to put a fire out with gasoline. It's not going to work, but they keep putting more gasoline on it because that's all they know."
There's a reason that the DOW is down 100+ points for the umpteenth day in a row.  At best we're back in a recession, at worst we're in the early stages of a depression.  Further devaluation of the dollar is not going to make it better but rather cause stronger headwinds for the economy to get back on its feet.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

ZEROHEDGE: Highest Radiation Ever Detected At Fukushima: 10+ Sieverts An Hour

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/highest-radiation-ever-detected-fukushima-10-sieverts-hour

QUOTE: "Remember all those idiots who claimed that Fukushima is contained, or better yet, the drama is exaggerated? Perhaps it is time to exile them all, starting with that moron from MIT, to Fukushima where the radiation measured at the base of the main ventilation stack just hit an all time high 10 sieverts/hour. The truth likely is much uglier: this is simply the highest reading the devices are able to record. In other words, there does not exist a device that can capture the true extent of the catastrophe at Fukushima!"

I've never been convinced that the situation with Fukushima is even fully understood, not to mention actually resolved, so this does not come as a surprise.  Sadly, it may be years until we grasp the full scope of consequences from this disaster.

MSNBC: After debt deal, economy in deeper peril

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/43976115/ns/business-eye_on_the_economy/

Maybe that's why Gold continues to surge in price while people still have to worry about other negative economic indicators.  Adding $7 trillion of debt during an economic downturn like this will likely ensure a credit rating downgrade anyway and do further damage to our flailing economy.  As I said recently, the economic problems are a definite disaster that we can see and predict, which is why I spend so much time referring to the events in the news that showcase what is taking place.  And don't worry, despite what the media has reported Senate Majority Leader Reid says that we will have tax increases in the next phase of this plan so there's another reason to believe this crisis is only going to worsen. 

More troubling financial news: Is another dot-com bubble about to burst?

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2011-07-26-dotcom-bubble_n.htm

QUOTE: "Yet, given the anemic U.S. economy, investors are throwing caution to the wind. "All investors are desperate for growth right now," says Daley. "Companies like Facebook get to set the terms on which they raise money in private transactions. Investors are willing to take on more and more risk to find growth." One measure of the frenzy: Investors are paying astronomical share prices for these Internet stocks relative to their earnings, known as price-earnings ratio, or P-E. For example, LinkedIn's share price is $104.05, while it logged yearly profit of 9 cents a share, yielding a sky-high P-E of 1,196. … That compares with an average P-E of 14.2 for the S&P 500."

Why does your good buddy Chip think this matters?  Simple....  The early 2000s saw a recession because of that era's dot-com burst.  Which means, if something similar happens these days (which seems very possible as dot-coms seem heavily dependent on familys' using discretionary income for their products) that would create a whole different recession issue in addition to the problems the economy faces today.  As I mentioned in my last post here on the blog, can you say "perfect storm"?  Of course, there is a contrary viewpoint that says this is nothing like the 2000 dot-com collapse, but the author's support for their viewpoint seems lacking for some reason.  

End Times? Texas Lake Turns Blood-Red

http://news.yahoo.com/end-times-texas-lake-turns-blood-red-215004338.html

QUOTE: "A Texas lake that turned blood-red this summer may not be a sign of the End Times, but probably is the end of a popular fishing and recreation spot. A drought has left the OC Fisher Reservoir in San Angelo State Park in West Texas almost entirely dry. The water that is left is stagnant, full of dead fish — and a deep, opaque red. The color has some apocalypse believers suggesting that OC Fisher is an early sign of the end of the world, but Texas Parks and Wildlife Inland Fisheries officials say the bloody look is the result of Chromatiaceae bacteria, which thrive in oxygen-deprived water. "It's just heartbreaking," said Charles Cruz, a fish and wildlife technician with Texas Parks and Wildlife in San Angelo, Tex."

Texas was hoping to get some rain from this last tropical storm that never really developed into much.  Seems as though the drought conditions continue to worsen with no relief in sight.  With so many threats to the food supply as well as other issues coming together at once I am concerned we might see a 'perfect storm' of political, social and natural events that could trigger a sudden and catastrophic sort of disaster in the next couple of years.  Hopefully that will not be the case but keep your eye on stories like the one linked above as they might be harbingers of other events to come.