Spotify Just Got Real Creepy With YOUR Data

Many naïve souls might say they don’t care if Spotify, cell phone providers like AT&T, or the NSA are collecting the data that defines their lives. They argue that “I have nothing to hide. I am not breaking any laws, etc., so why are people so paranoid?”

Spotify wants to be able to access the sensor information on your phone so it can determine whether you’re walking, running or standing still. It wants to know your GPS coordinates, grab photos from your phone and look through your contacts too. And it may share that information with its partners, so a whole load of companies could know exactly where you are and what you’re up to.

What these people fail to grasp is the reason there is a hunt for data (actually money), and the impact it has on capital – you know, that critical ingredient that is required to start and grow businesses. The reason the velocity of money is at 1950’s level and the world economy is contracting is due to capital getting off the grid because broke govt’s are on the prowl for anything that can be converted to cash. The abuse of the Constitution and our privacy has little to do with stopping terrorism, and everything to do with tracking money and the loss of trust and confidence, which is the foundation for a strong economy.

First they came for the Jews

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Good News – 2 Months Until Govt Peaks

There is little doubt that higher taxes, fees, tickets, and penalties will be headed our way, as this is always govt’s “solution” for mismanaged budgets. Chicago’s “solution” for rampant debts (that have caused credit downgrades) is a steady increase in taxes, which have caused people and businesses to leave the city and state. Now they are proposing a 30% increase in property taxes, and “appreciation bonds” that pay no interest, a ploy that even Puerto Rico deemed too risky. Cities and counties across the nation will be targeting property taxes to fund the ever-increasing public sector and public pensions. As previously discussed, raising taxes on illiquid real estate during a cycle of higher interest rates that will last for decades will certainly reduce the demand for real estate. Since real estate is the biggest investment for Americans, Europeans, and Asians, the global deleveraging process is going to be very painful for homeowners, resulting in many walking away from their homes, just as they did in Rome.

London will impose a hefty tax on foreigners that have bought property in the city. Washington just raised the gas tax by 7 cents per gallonFrance is paying informants to confiscate wealth, and the capital controls imposed on Greek citizens to prevent them from taking control of their own assets is grinding the economy to a halt.  How brain-dead does a politician have to be to not realize that people and businesses can move, taking their purchasing power and jobs with them? I guess the answer is – as long as brain-dead voters keep believing that the solution is more govt, which always results in more fraud, abuse and mismanagement. Fortunately, there are limits to the madness, which the world will see as the sovereign defaults start in earnest after 9/30/15.

The Greek businesses discussed in the article above, that can’t pay for raw materials because they can’t get access to their funds, had many months if not years of warnings that capital controls were coming. Only economic ignorance kept these Greek businesses in their banking system. If one does not understand how an economy prospers to raise the living standards for all, then how can they understand the interconnectivity of a world economy and how govt’s desperate need for cash is shutting down global commerce? Maybe they could just ask themselves, once govt has it all, then who will make the goods and provide the services on which they depend?

As business activity declines and deflation sets it, how are govt’s going to continue to spend at an increasing rate? Of course, govt’s incompetence, hubris, and inability to reform will cause it to try to get blood from a stone; but these efforts, as witnessed in Greece and Puerto Rico, only make the problem worse. This is the peak in govt that will start to spread on 10/1/15.

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What Assets Will Crash – Stocks, Bonds, or Real Estate?

Driven by the rise in interest rates, higher taxes, declining home ownership, and the reduction in long-term mortgages, real estate prices should peak with the Economic Confidence Model on 10/1/15, which Armstrong calls the Big Bang (the collapse in sovereign debt and the peak in govt). Since homeowners are only owners as long as they can afford the taxes, the headwinds will convert more and more into renters until the prices reach equilibrium. The only thing that may surprise investors more is the rise of the dollar.

Greece has been the epicenter for the coming sovereign debt crisis, and London real estate looks to be the canary in the coal mine for real estate. The US could continue to benefit in the short-term, because it’s still the best horse on the plot of land where the glue factory resides. However, on the other side of 2015.75, when the economy turns down and declining tax receipts “force” govt to raise taxes (instead of downsizing and reforming), distressed capital will look for a more liquid safe haven that doesn’t have a deflationary tailwind, especially when the cycle has another 17 years to decline.realestate-cycle

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Can Greece Show the West the Way Out?

Greece finally does the right thing by kicking out the debt pushers. They also used a democratic process by using a referendum to let the people decide their fate, instead of unelected bureaucrats or pretend Representatives that have been bought off by donors. Yet, all one hears from the financial media and so-called freedom lovers on FOX is how Greece is full of a bunch of lazy tax cheats.

Those critical of Greece either don’t understand the flawed structure of the euro, are hypocritically talking their book, or failed miserably in history class. First of all, countries that had a currency weaker than Germany prior to the creation of the euro, immediately had their debt increased when it was converted to euros. For Greece and the Drachma, it resulted in Greece’s debt doubling due to a currency event as the value of the euro increased.

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Bernie’s Just Another “Magical Thinker” from GOVT

I will use Bernie’s “10 radical ideas that most Americans agree on” to summarize the problems he does not solve, including climate change, which will not stop changing even if all carbon-producing machines were turned off tomorrow.

Referencing the above article, I have no problem with items 1, 2, 6, 9, and 10, but Bernie whiffs on the other items. If we don’t fix the economy, the other things won’t matter. In general, Bernie believes that socialist policies provide economic solutions that have never worked – even once. I guess people are just determined to get their turn at bat to prove they too can strike out.

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Supreme Court Rightly Upholds Same Sex Marriage

As Armstrong documents, the Supreme Court rightly upholds same sex marriage. However, politicians, judges, and “normal people” still have difficulty applying equal rights to all groups if it does not benefit or align with their self-interest and beliefs. There is nothing more I can add to Armstrong’s brilliant and unbiased insights of the law, and I encourage everyone to reflect on his analysis.

Obama is Targeting Retirement Accts & Mortgages

It’s obvious to most conscious people that Obama thinks govt’s humongous hammer has minor consequences in its hunt for nails and money. What apparently is not so obvious to many are the consequences of Obama’s Marxist actions. The reason I say “not so obvious” is because even those that understand that less freedom means less economic prosperity, don’t seem to understand their rights are being sacrificed daily for the benefit of govt, and at the expense of the economy. The most recent example appears in Obama’s 2016 budget, which targets retirement accounts.

Sub-market returns on you Social Security CONTRIBUTIONS is bad enough, and we are also going to be expected to accept cuts in our Social Security payments. However, now Obama thinks you should be taxed on your retirement savings, which were supposed to be tax-free. Whether it happens through taxation or a govt-induced market collapse, the bottom line is your retirement will get a significant haircut. Why? So those in govt can keep their jobs, perks, and power.

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There Comes a Time When We Must Take a Stand

When capital flees conditions it does not like, it will find a conduit, often with the support of govt and their cronies – at least if the money is flowing in. While broke govt’s will impose liberty-killing laws (capital controls) if people try to take their money out of the country, if money is coming into a country, the govt assists or looks the other way – when money is from Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs).

Just as many citizens do not fully appreciate the NSA data gathering of all of their PERSONAL information (believing they have nothing to hide), they also may not understand the full cost of our govt permitting their bankster donors from laundering money for drug cartels or funneling money from Oligarchs around the world into US real estate.

The consequences of the NSA’s unconstitutional data gathering, sold as fighting terrorism versus the true reason of finding and confiscating money for govt, is that capital will ultimately flee the intrusively-corrupt and selective law enforcement by govt in favor of safer jurisdictions – even if that means going underground or under mattresses.

The consequence of felonious financial flows into the US is that it artificially inflates asset prices, and when combined with the normal flight of capital from troubled regions around the world, it extends normal business cycles into devastating bubbles. While it may temporarily increase the paper wealth of those invested in the assets, it makes real estate/rents unaffordable for the majority and misallocates capital into paper assets with no intrinsic benefits.

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Armstrong Asks the Pivotal Question of our Time

As Twisted recently discussed, there is an inseparable and unquestionable relationship between the rule of law, confidence, and the economy. When the rule of law gives way to govt fraud and corruption, public confidence collapses, along with the economy. The rule of law has already collapsed, although many don’t realize it, because the media keeps wanting you to believe that the problem is out-of-control “thugs”, instead of out of control govt spending and fraud. Like one Baltimore protester said, “it’s unacceptable to burn down your city, but it’s also unacceptable to break a kids neck” (and shoot unarmed citizens, and plant evidence, and lie about forensic data, and confiscate assets with no evidence, and fraudulently ticket people, etc).

In his typically insightful manner, Armstrong reviews how the Rule of Law has collapsed, and asks the pivotal question of our time – “Are we capable as a society of taking that one small step for humankind and learn from history just once?

Occupy_Wall_Street_September_28_2011

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Another Nail in the Coffin – “Clinton Cash”

The latest Billary controversy detailed in Schweitzers’s book, Clinton Cash, has stirred emotions from many concerned citizens, yet all miss the point that really matters. Passionate points can be made about the “Clinton Blur” of donations to the Clinton Foundation, absorbent fees for speeches by Bill, and coincidental business deals like Uranium One, which has resulted in Russia owning at least a quarter of US uranium sources. Uniformed and/or connected supporters of the Clinton’s argue that this is a right-wing conspiracy, while others insist that it doesn’t matter because Hillary will simply deny any involvement – including deleting her own emails and facilitating the gun running to rebels (ISIS) by Ambassador Stevens in Benghazi, and that politics as usual will continue unabated.  The point that most miss is the relationship between the erosion of confidence in govt and the vibrancy of the economy.

clinton cash

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