Al-Husseini blows out the most dangerous statement in 2019: Revolutionary Guards and Hezbollah are funded from Iraq's budget
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Luigi asks...could Iraq greed & corruption weaken the IQD RV when it's our time to exchange?
The In Country RV has been halted. Treat this article as a rumor. Not verified. Your opine.
8-31-2017 Intel Guru RayRen98 An article surfaced indicating that PM Abadi was called on to "curb the depletion of hard currency" due to passport carriers of VISA's exchanging 1,200 dinar for $3,000 USD noting these are currency dealers, not basic travelers indicating in the loss of state funds. (Unless I'm misreading this article) Let's see what tomorrow brings!
Former French ambassador in Baghdad arrested
Political Since 05/24/2017 11:11 am (Baghdad time)
Baghdad balances News
Web site French RFI, Wednesday that former French ambassador in Iraq Boris Bouillon faces trial before the French judiciary after his arrest at the train station in France.
The Web site said in a report, said that "Bouillon nicknamed" Sarko Boy "who played an active role in improving relations between Sarkozy, former Libyan Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, facing charges of fraud and money laundering after his arrest in the Gardonor train station carrying a bag stuffed with 350 thousand euros and 40 thousand dollars, "noting that" French law prohibits the transfer of the amount of more than 10 thousand euros in secret to any country of the European Union countries. "
He added that "Bouillon insists that the funds were payments to him as an intermediary for an Iraqi company in a major construction project was the French judge of the Court Ghali satrap had commented earlier in the presence of the smell of corruption in it disturbing."
The site said that "the accused after brought money to France from Iraq without being advertised in any of the two countries, he hid in four, two of which packages in his apartment in Paris and one in the basement of the building and another in a hole in the same basement" .anthy 29 / d 24
God bless the patriot who let this cat out of the bag ...
Dutch Regulator Accidentally Posts Soros’s Short Positions
by Ellen Proper and Colin McClelland January 26, 2017, 2:18 AM EST January 26, 2017, 8:12 AM EST Bets against stocks were revealed briefly on AFM’s website ‘Human error’ blamed for publication of positions back to 2012 George Soros
Some of hedge fund billionaire George Soros’s short positions dating back to 2012 were published on the Dutch financial market regulator’s website this week due to “human error,” according to the regulator AFM.
The short positions, bets on a stock declining, were “between 0.2 percent and 0.5 percent,” of shares outstanding in the companies shorted, AFM spokesman Ward Snijders said by phone on Thursday. The Dutch regulator publishes shorts of 0.5 percent or higher on its website on a daily basis. The smaller amounts were posted by mistake, he said.
The Financial Times earlier reported that some of the positions, including bets against Dutch banks, including ING Groep NV, appeared briefly on the website on Tuesday evening. ING declined to comment on Thursday.
Soros, whose fortune is estimated at $25.2 billion by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, is in the same league as Warren Buffett when it comes to investors copying their trades as they try to ride the coattails of the super successful. Short positions, which are typically closely guarded, in Deutsche Bank AG jumped when it was revealed in June that Soros had bet that the stock would fall after the U.K. voted to leave the European Union. The German bank fell 14 percent on the first day after the ballot.
The Dutch regulator’s spokesman couldn’t disclose whether there has been contact with Soros following Tuesday’s error. A spokesman for Soros didn’t respond to an e-mail seeking comment.
The 86-year-old investor lost about $1 billion by betting against the market after the election of U.S. President Donald Trump, according to the Wall Street Journal this month. The hiring of a chief investment officer may reduce Soros’s role, the paper reported.
Soros has managed as much as $30 billion as founder and chairman at New York-based Soros Fund Management LLC. Currency bets on the pound in 1992, the Thai baht five years later and the yen in 2012-13 helped Soros attain a fortune ranked 26th globally by Bloomberg. He’s donated $8 billion to charities since founding the pro-democracy Open Society Foundations in 1979.
Regulators have pushed for more transparency around short positions. The European Union imposed rules in 2012 on short bets against some securities in the political bloc to reduce the risk of destabilizing sovereign-debt markets. The U.K.’s Financial Services Authority introduced a regulation in June 2008 requiring disclosure of short positions of more than 0.25 percent for companies that are selling new shares in rights offerings.
Iraqi Kurdistan oil minister connected to missing $31.4 mil. from South Korea’s HSBC Posted on
March 11, 2015
SEOUL,— The National Assembly is moving to have HSBC CEO Stuart Gulliver answer key questions regarding the disappearance of $31.4 million of taxpayers’ money in a project undertaken as part of the failed “energy diplomacy” under the previous Lee Myung-bak government.
Rep. Chun Soon-ok of the main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD) told The Korea Times that she is sending Gulliver questions about the case, which she believes could escalate into an international bribery scandal involving former presidential aides.
“First and foremost, we want to know who took the money,” Rep. Chun said, referring to the “signature bonus” given by the state-run Korea National Oil Corp. (KNOC) to the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in northern Iraq on Jan. 16 and Dec. 19, 2008, in return for the right to explore and develop the Bazian Block oilfield on its territory.
She said that the money disappeared after it was sent to the KRG through HSBC in London.
“We assume that the money was shared by the former aides of President Lee, Kurdistan officials and Choi Kyu-sun, the middleman,” she said. Chun belongs to the party’s committee to uncover the outflow of national wealth under the previous government.
But Choi denied this occurred, former President Lee couldn’t be reached and Kurdistan officials were not available for comment.
HSBC also declined to comment.
Chun said that the global bank is under an obligation to promote transparency regarding its operations in general and, in particular, in this kind of case in which there are strong suspicions of bribery.
She said that she is willing to enlist the help of an ongoing bipartisan probe into the failed policies of the former President in order to uncover the truth about the missing millions in taxpayers’ money.
“We are not ruling out another avenue of using a government-to-government contact to get an answer from HSBC,” she said.
At the center of the case is Ashti Hawrami, the KRG’s natural resources minister, who designated HSBC headquarters in London’s Canary Wharf business district as the bank through which to send the KNOC money.
The money could have been a bribe given to Hawrami, Chun said.
Making the HSBC deal more dubious is that it was different from those involving other parts of the deal conducted by Commerzbank in Frankfurt.
When the KNOC sent $100 million in August 2012 and $10 million in January 2014 as SOC construction costs to build a hospital and other facilities in Kurdistan, the oil company used Commerzbank as the intermediary. Certificates exist, clearly showing that the money arrived at the Kurdistan International Bank via Commerzbank.
The copy of the request for remittances acquired by The Korea Times listed 31 banks as intermediaries.
But the request involving the $31.4 million, a copy of which The Korea Times also obtained, only cited HSBC’s headquarters in London.
Gulliver recently appeared before the Treasury Select Committee at the House of Commons, London, to be questioned over allegations that the bank’s Swiss branch helped wealthy customers dodge paying tax.
The bank has endured a string of scandals and paid millions in penalties to regulators around the world
Okay, so why am I posting this? I watched an interview with Doug Casey & Peter Schiff concerning Peter's father Irwin that is serving a very stiff 13 yr prison sentence - That interview led me by interest to watch a video of Doug Casey concerning "HIS" views on voting - I was absolutely in agreement with so much that he said but pushed it aside until I read Ezrapounds thread earlier this morning -
We are cursed if we do and cursed if we don't -- It reminds me of an old wise tale "If you get up I'm going to beat you with this stick. If you keep sitting there I"m going to beat you with this stick" ----- so what do you do? I have my answer do you have yours?
Doug Casey's Top Five Reasons Not To Vote
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 10/22/2012 23:42 -0400
Submitted by Doug Casey of Casey Research,
L: Doug, we've spoken about presidents. We have a presidential election coming up in the US – an election that could have significant consequences on our investments. But given the views you've already expressed on the Tea Party movement and anarchy, I'm sure you have different ideas. What do you make of the impending circus, and what should a rational man do?
Doug: Well, a rational man, which is to say, an ethical man, would almost certainly not vote in this election, or in any other – at least above a local level, where you personally know most of both your neighbors and the candidates.
L: Why? Might not an ethical person want to vote the bums out?
Doug: He might feel that way, but he'd better get his emotions under control. I've thought about this. So let me give you at least five reasons why no one should vote.
The first reason is that voting is an unethical act, in and of itself. That's because the state is pure, institutionalized coercion. If you believe that coercion is an improper way for people to relate to one another, then you shouldn't engage in a process that formalizes and guarantees the use of coercion.
L: It's probably worth defining coercion in this context. I know you agree with me that force is ethical in self-defense. A murderer I shoot might feel coerced into accepting a certain amount of hot lead that he did not consent to, but he intended the same, or worse, for me, so the scales are balanced. What you are talking about is forcing innocent, non-consenting others to do things against their wills, like paying taxes that go to pay for military adventures they believe are wrong, etc.
Doug: Right. The modern state not only routinely coerces people into doing all sorts of things they don't want to do – often very clearly against their own interests – but it necessarily does so, by its nature. People who want to know more about that should read our conversation on anarchy.
This distinction is very important in a society with a government that is no longer limited by a constitution that restrains it from violating individual rights. And when you vote, you participate in, and endorse, this unethical system.
L: It's probably also worth clarifying that you're not talking about all voting here. When you are a member of a golfing club and vote on how to use the fees, you and everyone else have consented to the process, so it's not unethical. It's participating in the management of the coercive machinery of the state you object to, not voting in and of itself.
Doug: Exactly. As Mao correctly said, "The power of the State comes out of the barrel of a gun." It's not like voting for the leadership of a social club. Unlike a golfing club or something of that nature, the state won't let you opt out.
L: Even if you're not harming anyone and just want to be left alone.
Doug: Which relates to the second reason: privacy. It compromises your privacy to vote. It gets your name added to a list government busybodies can make use of, like court clerks putting together lists of conscripts for jury duty. Unfortunately, this is not as important a reason as it used to be, because of the great proliferation of lists people are on anyway.
Still, while it's true there's less privacy in our world today, in general, the less any government knows about you, the better off you are. This is, of course, why I've successfully refused to complete a census form for the last 40 years.
L: [Chuckles] We've talked about the census. Good for you
Doug: It's wise to be a nonperson, as far as the state is concerned, as far as possible.
L: Not to digress too much, but some people might react by saying that juries are important.
Doug: They are, but it would be a waste of my time to sign up for jury duty, because I would certainly be kicked off any jury. No attorney would ever let me stay on the jury once we got to voir dire, because I would not agree to being a robot that simply voted on the facts and the law as instructed by the judge –
I'd want to vote on the morality of the law in question too. I'd be interested in justice, and very few laws today, except for the basic ones on things like murder and theft, have anything to do with justice. If the case related to drug laws, or tax laws, I would almost certainly automatically vote to acquit, regardless of the facts of the case.
L: I've thought about it too, because it is important, and I might be willing to serve on a jury. And of course I'd vote my conscience too. But I'd want to be asked, not ordered to do it. I'm not a slave.
Doug: My feelings exactly.
L: But we should probably get to your third reason for not voting.
Doug: That would be because it's a degrading experience. The reason I say that is because registering to vote, and voting itself, usually involves taking productive time out of your day to go stand around in lines in government offices. You have to fill out forms and deal with petty bureaucrats. I know I can find much more enjoyable and productive things to do with my time, and I'm sure anyone reading this can as well.
L: And the pettier the bureaucrat, the more unpleasant the interaction tends to be.
Doug: I have increasing evidence of that every time I fly. The TSA goons are really coming into their own now, as our own home-grown Gestapo wannabes.
L: It's a sad thing… Reason number four?
Doug: As P.J. O'Rourke says in a recent book, and as I've always said, voting just encourages them.
I'm convinced that most people don't vote for candidates they believe in, but against candidates they fear. But that's not how the guy who wins sees it; the more votes he gets, the more he thinks he's got a mandate to rule – even if all his votes are really just votes against his opponent. Some people justify this, saying it minimizes harm to vote for the lesser of two evils. That's nonsense, because it still leaves you voting for evil.
The lesser of two evils is still evil.
Incidentally, I got as far as this point in 1980, when I was on the Phil Donahue show. I had the whole hour on national TV all to myself, and I felt in top form. It was actually the day before the national election, when Jimmy Carter was the incumbent, running against Ronald Reagan.
After I made some economic observations, Donahue accused me of intending to vote for Reagan. I said that I was not, and as sharp as Donahue was, he said, "Well, you're not voting for Carter, so you must be voting Libertarian…"
I said no, and had to explain why not. I believed then just as I do now. And it was at about this point when the audience, which had been getting restive, started getting really upset with me. I never made it to point five.
Perhaps I shouldn't have been surprised.
That same audience, when I pointed out that their taxes were high and were being wasted, contained an individual who asked, "Why do we have to pay for things with our taxes? Why doesn't the government pay for it?"
I swear that's what he said; it's on tape. If you could go back and watch the show, you'd see that the audience clapped after that brilliant question. Which was when I first realized that while the situation is actually hopeless, it's also quite comic…
Doug: And things have only gotten worse since then, with decades more public education behind us.
L: I bet that guy works in the Obama administration now, where they seem to think exactly as he did; the government will just pay for everything everyone wants with money it doesn't have.
Doug: [Chuckles] Maybe so. He'd now be of an age where he's collecting Social Security and Medicare, plus food stamps, and likely gaming the system for a bunch of other freebies. Maybe he's so discontent with his miserable life that he goes to both Tea Party and Green Party rallies to kill time.
I do believe we're getting close to the endgame. The system is on the verge of falling apart. And the closer we get to the edge, the more catastrophic the collapse it appears we're going to have.
Which leads me to point number five: Your vote doesn't count. If I'd gotten to say that to the Donahue audience, they probably would have stoned me. People really like to believe that their individual votes count.
Politicians like to say that every vote counts, because it gets everyone into busybody mode, makes voters complicit in their crimes. But statistically, any person's vote makes no more difference than a single grain of sand on a beach. Thinking their vote counts seems to give people who need it an inflated sense of self-worth.
That's completely apart from the fact – as voters in Chicago in 1960 and Florida in 2000 can tell you – when it actually does get close, things can be, and often are, rigged. As Stalin famously said, it's not who votes that counts, it's who counts the votes.
Anyway, officials manifestly do what they want, not what you want them to do, once they are in office. They neither know, nor care, what you want. You're just another mark, a mooch, a source of funds.
L: The idea of political representation is a myth, and a logical absurdity. One person can only represent his own opinions – if he's even thought them out. If someone dedicated his life to studying another person, he might be able to represent that individual reasonably accurately. But given that no two people are completely – or even mostly – alike, it's completely impossible to represent the interests of any group of people.
Doug: The whole constellation of concepts is ridiculous. This leads us to the subject of democracy. People say that if you live in a democracy, you should vote. But that begs the question of whether democracy itself is any good. And I would say that, no, it's not. Especially a democracy unconstrained by a constitution.
That, sadly, is the case in the US, where the Constitution is 100% a dead letter. Democracy is nothing more than mob rule dressed up in a suit and tie. It's no way for a civilized society to be run. At this point, it's a democracy consisting of two wolves and a sheep, voting about what to eat for dinner.
L: Okay, but in our firmly United State of America today, we don't live in your ideal society. It is what it is, and if you don't vote the bums out, they remain in office. What do you say to the people who say that if you don't vote, if you don't raise a hand, then you have no right to complain about the results of the political process?
Doug: But I do raise a hand, constantly. I try to change things by influencing the way people think. I'd just rather not waste my time or degrade myself on unethical and futile efforts like voting. Anyway, that argument is more than fallacious, it's ridiculous and spurious.
Actually, only the non-voter does have a right to complain – it's the opposite of what they say. Voters are assenting to whatever the government does; a nonvoter can best be compared to someone who refuses to join a mob. Only he really has the right to complain about what they do.
L: Okay then, if the ethical man shouldn't vote in the national elections coming up, what should he do?
Doug: I think it's like they said during the war with Viet Nam: Suppose they gave a war, and nobody came? I also like to say: Suppose they levied a tax, and nobody paid? And at this time of year: Suppose they gave an election, and nobody voted?
The only way to truly delegitimize a corrupt system is by not voting. When tin-plated dictators around the world have their rigged elections, and people stay home in droves, even today's "we love governments of all sorts" international community won't recognize the results of the election.
L: Delegitimizing evil… and without coercion, or even force. That's a beautiful thing, Doug. I'd love to see the whole crooked, festering, parasitical mass in Washington – and similar places – get a total vote of no-confidence.
Doug: Indeed. Now, I realize that my not voting won't make that happen. My not voting doesn't matter any more than some naïve person's voting does. But at least I'll know that what I did was ethical. You have to live with yourself. That's only possible if you try to do the right thing.
L: At least you won't have blood on your hands.
Doug: That's exactly the point.
L: A friendly amendment: you do staunchly support voting with your feet.
Doug: Ah, that's true. Unfortunately, the idea of the state has spread over the face of the earth like an ugly skin disease. All of the governments of the world are, at this point, growing in extent and power – and rights violations – like cancers. But still, that is one way I am dealing with the problem; I'm voting with my feet. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. It's idiotic to sit around like a peasant and wait to see what they do to you.
To me, it makes much more sense to live as a perpetual tourist, staying no more than six months of the year in any one place. Tourists are courted and valued, whereas residents and citizens are viewed as milk cows. And before this crisis is over, they may wind up looking more like beef cows. Entirely apart from that, it keeps you from getting into the habit of thinking like a medieval serf. And I like being warm in the winter, and cool in the summer.
L: And, as people say: "What if everyone did that?" Well, you'd see people migrating towards the least predatory states where they could enjoy the most freedom, and create the most wealth for themselves and their posterity. That sort of voting with your feet could force governments to compete for citizens, which would lead to more places where people can live as they want. It could become a worldwide revolution fought and won without guns.
Doug: That sounds pretty idealistic, but I do believe this whole sick notion of the nation-state will come to an end within the next couple generations. It makes me empathize with Lenin when he said, "The worse it gets, the better it gets." Between jet travel, the Internet, and the bankruptcy of governments around the world, the nation-state is a dead duck. As we've discussed before, people will organize into voluntary communities we call phyles.
L: That's the name given to such communities by science fiction author Neal Stephenson in his book The Diamond Age, which we discussed in our conversation on Speculator's Fiction. Well, we've talked quite a bit – what about investment implications?
Doug: First, don't expect anything that results from this US election to do any real, lasting good. And if, by some miracle, it did, the short-term implications would be very hard economic times. What to do in either case is what we write about in our big-picture newsletter, The Casey Report.
More important, however, is to have a healthy and useful psychological attitude. For that, you need to stop thinking politically, stop wasting time on elections, entitlements, and such nonsense. You've got to use all of your time and brain power to think economically. That's to say, thinking about how to allocate your various intellectual, personal, and capital assets, to survive the storm – and even thrive, if you play your cards right.
L: Very good. I like that: think economically, not politically. Thanks, Doug!
Doug: My pleasure.
Irrespective of whether one agrees with Doug's politics, his investing record speaks for itself. And just like him, the analysts and editors at Casey Research dig deep in their respective fields and are blunt in their assessments. One thing many agree that the US will have to face, no matter the outcome of the presidential election, is its growing debt crisis.