"Frankly, I don't know what it is about California, but we seem to have a strange urge to elect really obnoxious women to high office. I'm not bragging, you understand, but no other state, including Maine, even comes close. When it comes to sending left-wing dingbats to Washington, we're Number One. There's no getting around the fact that the last time anyone saw the likes of Barbara Boxer, Dianne Feinstein, Maxine Waters, and Nancy Pelosi, they were stirring a cauldron when the curtain went up on 'Macbeth '. The four of them are like jackasses who happen to possess the gift of blab. You don't know if you should condemn them for their stupidity or simply marvel at their ability to form words." -- Columnist Burt Prelutsky, Los Angeles Times

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As Tokyo spins up its defence industry for the country's largest military expansion since World War Two, it has run into a challenge: some of Japan's best-known brands are reluctant to invest in the military side of their businesses.

Japan, which renounced war in 1947, last year unveiled a five-year $315 billion military expansion to deter Beijing from using force in the East China Sea amid growing concern that Russia's attack on Ukraine - which it calls a "special operation" - could embolden China to invade Taiwan.

But a key part of Tokyo's strategy hinges on persuading commercial firms such as Toshiba Corp, Mitsubishi Electric Corp and Daikin Industries Ltd, which for decades have quietly armed its Self Defence Forces (SDF), to ramp up production.

In a country with an ingrained public sentiment against militarism, that is proving a hard sell for some of its suppliers, according to Reuters interviews with six government and company officials.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:24

The Polish military has deployed anti-tank barriers on its borders with Russia and Belarus to prepare for a potential escalation of the war in Ukraine.

Poland could be heavily affected by the conflict should it spread beyond Ukraine’s borders.

Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak recently tweeted photos showing his country’s security measures to protect its border with Kaliningrad Oblast.

He said the move is part of Warsaw’s deterrence strategy.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:23

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has announced $331m in new humanitarian assistance to Ethiopia during a visit to Addis Ababa aimed at improving the United States’ relations with the East African country.

The aid package was made public during a visit by Blinken to a United Nations logistics warehouse in the Ethiopian capital on Wednesday after he met with the country’s leaders.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:22

If you have ever wondered, “where do America’s spies come from?” the answer is quite possibly the Walsh School of Foreign Service (SFS) at Georgetown University. It is only a modestly-seized institution, yet the school provides the backbone for the Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Defense, State Department, and other organs of the national security state.

From overthrowing foreign governments and conducting worldwide psychological operations to overseeing drug and gun smuggling and a global torture network, the CIA is perhaps the world’s most controversial and dangerous organization. All of which begs the question, should an educational institution have any formal relationship with it, let alone such a storied school as Georgetown?

Yet, with more than two dozen ex-CIA officials among its teaching staff, the school tailors its courses towards producing the next generation of analysts, assassins, coup-plotters and economic hitmen, fast-tracking graduates into the upper echelons of the national security state.

The CIA has also quietly funded the SFS, as journalist Will Sommer revealed. The agency, based in Langley, VA, secretly donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to fund the department’s work, despite Georgetown insisting on its website that this money came from anonymous donations from individuals.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:22

Washington vehemently opposing the foreign agent law is unsurprising. Thousands of organizations, including media outlets and rights groups in Georgia, have received funding from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and U.S. Agency for International Development – which Power now incidentally leads – over the past three decades. Any reform that would further expose this hardly hidden but little acknowledged or understood fact might raise difficult questions about the independence of these entities and the sinister purposes they serve evermore.

That these organizations have a vested interest in keeping their U.S. financing under wraps was amply demonstrated by their pronounced presence at the forefront of the protests in Tbilisi. Many staffers at NED-funded NGOs also took to social media to shriek disapproval of the prospect of having to disclose their foreign funding – despite their employers in some cases already doing so voluntarily anyway.

As luck would have it, right when the thousands gathered outside Tbilisi’s parliament building appeared on the verge of storming the building, the Georgian government scrapped the foreign agent law. What accounts for the protesters’ visceral aversion to having to openly admit their relationship with NED by law?

Posted on: Mar 16 08:21

It's no surprise that a bank focusing on woke politics failed, former Acting Director of National Intelligence Ric Grenell told Newsmax on Monday.

In his interview with "Prime News," Grenell said that "whenever you have an administration that is going to completely concentrate on diversity, equity, [and] inclusion-type of programs, you're going to have a huge problem."

Grenell continued: "Look, people go to a bank because they want to, you know, have loans; they want banking services. And yet this small bank had 1,500 climate-related loans. For a small bank, that's a lot. That's probably too much, and I think that's what was happening is that they were having too many people that we're looking at the peripheral issues and not at the substance."

The New York Times reported that Silicon Valley Bank issued billions of dollars to more than "1,550 technology firms" working in areas such as solar, "hydrogen and battery storage projects."

Posted on: Mar 16 08:18

Last week the Senate Democrat majority was hospitalized with Senator John Fetterman dispatched to a psych ward and Senator Dianne Feinstein, who doesn’t seem to know where she is, hospitalized for shingles. Fetterman and Feinstein didn’t let being hospitalized slow them down and went right on co-sponsoring bills even though the former had to be hospitalized because he couldn’t take care of himself and the latter no longer recognized colleagues.

Even in the Senate, Fetterman couldn’t understand what was being said and Feinstein wasn’t aware that she had announced her retirement. Despite that there are press releases from their offices and they’re cosponsoring legislation as if they’re functional and able to make decisions.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:17

Political author Dick Morris waged on Newsmax that the rush to rescue depositors of Silicon Valley Bank or, more precisely, a bank directly associated with Silicon Valley, which he terms as the "Democratic stronghold of the world," is as big a "crony payoff as you possibly can have."

"I think that the Silicon Valley Bank is enjoying a charmed life because it's in Silicon Valley," Morris told "American Agenda" on Monday.

"It's the Democratic stronghold of the world. And 99% of their people are probably Democrats and depositors that raised hell they're all democratic donors, so this is as crony a payoff as you possibly can have."

Morris's statement comes after Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen proclaimed to CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday that the government's assistance to depositors is not a bailout, which some experts have deemed a game of semantics in order to quash fear of spreading contagion.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:16

One of the biggest financial stories of the moment is the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank. And now Goldman Sachs is being pulled into the drama.

The investment bank is set to receive more than $100 million dollars after the failure of SVB, The New York Times reported on Wednesday. That’s because Goldman bought $21.4 billion of debt from the beleaguered bank, which came at a loss of $1.8 billion to SVB. (A spokesperson for Goldman declined to comment to the Times.)

Posted on: Mar 16 08:15

The United States Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission were investigating whether Signature Bank failed to prevent money laundering before the firm collapsed on Sunday.

Federal investigators in Washington DC and Manhattan, New York were specifically looking into the bank's dealings with cryptocurrency clients, to assess if the institution took sufficient steps to detect potential money laundering, Bloomberg reported, citing unnamed sources.

It is not clear what came of the investigation, but the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation was forced to take over operations of the bank on Sunday when it could not meet the demands of customers withdrawing their funds.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:14

Credit Suisse shares soared by over 35% on Thursday after the company secured a $54 billion lifeline from the Swiss National Bank to shore up liquidity and investor confidence.

JPMorgan analysts still said the loan from the SNB would not be enough to soothe investor concerns and 'status quo was no longer an option', leaving a takeover for Credit Suisse - especially by rival bank UBS - as the most likely outcome.

Credit Suisse shares were indicated at 2.3 Swiss francs ($2.48), up 35% from Wednesday's close. 

Posted on: Mar 16 08:14

Credit Suisse shares soared by over 35% on Thursday after the company secured a $54 billion lifeline from the Swiss National Bank to shore up liquidity and investor confidence.

JPMorgan analysts still said the loan from the SNB would not be enough to soothe investor concerns and 'status quo was no longer an option', leaving a takeover for Credit Suisse - especially by rival bank UBS - as the most likely outcome.

Credit Suisse shares were indicated at 2.3 Swiss francs ($2.48), up 35% from Wednesday's close. 

Posted on: Mar 16 08:09

 El Salvador’s government sent 2,000 more suspects to a huge new prison built especially for gang members Wednesday, and the the justice minister vowed that “they will never return” to the streets.

The tough statement came as the administration of President Nayib Bukele asked for yet another extension of an anti-gang emergency measures that would take the crackdown into its 13th month.

Over the last 354 days, about 65,000 people have been arrested in the antigang campaign. Human rights groups say that there have been many instances of prisoner abuses and that innocent people have been swept up in police raids.

The government announced the mass inmate transfer with a slickly produced video posted on social media. It showed prisoners forced to run barefoot and handcuffed down stairways and over bare ground, clad only in regulation white shorts. They were then forced to sit with their legs locked in closely clumped groups in cells.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:08

Americans need to be prepared to eat a lot less beef, because the size of the national cattle herd is steadily shrinking.  And of course this is happening in the context of a much larger crisis.  As I detailed in a previous article, even CNN is admitting that we are currently in the midst of “the worst food crisis in modern history”.  But even though children are literally dropping dead from starvation on the other side of the planet, a lot of people here in the United States refuse to take this crisis seriously.  As long as their stomachs are full they think that everything is just fine.  But the truth is that conditions are also starting to get tight here in the United States.

According to the latest biannual report from the USDA, the number of beef cows in this country has fallen to the lowest level since 1962…

Posted on: Mar 16 08:07

Macgregor: "The last thing Americans need is a war. No more political and military incompetence, ineptitude, corruption. They want an economy that works, and they're not going to stand around and watch the financial system go under. They want real leadership, not a cardboard cutout President."

Posted on: Mar 16 08:06

The US has the lowest life expectancy of all G7 nations, according to an alarming league table.

Seventy years ago people in America could expect to live until they were 68, with the country ranking 13th globally behind the likes of Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

Although the average person now lives a decade longer than in 1950, progress has stalled compared to other developed nations.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:06

The Biden administration has threatened to ban TikTok in the US unless its Chinese owner sells its shares in the app.

It is the first time the administration has explicitly threatened a ban and represents a shift in its attitude towards the platform, which Republicans have said is a national security threat for the way it harvests data from US citizens.

The demand was made by the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States and specifies that TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, sell its stake in the US version of the app.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:04

Pakistan's ex-Prime Minister Imran Khan tells AFP the government wants him behind bars in order to stop him taking part in elections due later this year. Riot police halted an attempt to arrest the 70-year-old former leader and onetime star cricketer, ending a siege of his residence after violent clashes with hundreds of his supporters.

Posted on: Mar 16 08:01

Mr. Hirofumi, Yanagase speaks out:

“Compared to 2021, the number of deaths has increased by more than 140,000. Compared to 2020, the number of deaths has increased by 210,000…the highest number since World War II”

Japan has been flooded with people complaining of feeling ill after receiving the COVID vaccine

“Amazingly, even though more than 2000 people have died after vaccination, more than 99% of these deaths cannot be evaluated”

According to our calculations, the percentage of reported deaths after COVID vaccine is more than 38 times higher in comparison with the flu vaccine

Posted on: Mar 16 08:01

Every cause has its effect; every effect has its cause; everything happens according to law; chance is but a name for law not recognized; there are many planes of causation, but nothing escapes the law.” —Kybalion

It is no coincidence that within 48 hours, two California commercial banks failed. The not much talked-about Silvergate Capital, a central lender to the crypto industry, declared on March 8, 2023, it would wind down its operations. On March 10, the Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), primary lender for tech-startups, collapsed.

SVB was immediately taken over by federal regulators. It is the largest bank failure since the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers in 2008. Relatively unknown outside of the Silicon Valley, SVB was the 16th largest US commercial bank with US$ 209 billion in assets at the end of 2022.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has assured SVB insured depositors that they will have access to their full funds within the FDIC-fixed limits of US$ 250,000 per depositor.

However, the FDIC total fund covers only about 2% of the $9.6 trillion in US-insured deposits.

What happens when other banks collapse at the same time and uninformed depositors believe their deposits up to US$ 250,000 are safe? But then find out that they are not?

Posted on: Mar 16 07:59

Our thoughts are with the people of Iraq, who’s country has been literally destroyed by US-NATO.

It’s a hegemonic agenda which consists in transforming countries into territories. 

March 2023 marks 20 years since the US-UK led war on Iraq in 2003. And that war is still ongoing. 

Historically however this war on Iraq did not start in 2003. It was preceded by the so-called “Gulf War” in 1991 (The First War against Iraq)

And in 2014, a Third US led War against Iraq was launched under the banner of Obama’s 2014 “counter-terrorism bombing campaign”.  

It’s permanent warfare. And now Joe Biden is preparing the fourth stage of this war against the people of Iraq.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:58

The problem with both the German reporting and that of The New York Times (whose source was clearly referring to the same data reported by the German reporters) is that the Andromeda narrative doesn’t hold water.

Take, for instance, the Tom Clancy-like tale of derring-do that has four allegedly Ukraine-affiliated divers defy physiology by conducting dives that would require the use of a decompression chamber for them to survive an ascent of 240 feet (the depth of the Nord Stream pipelines that were destroyed). A rule of thumb is that decompression takes approximately one day per 100 feet of seawater plus a day.

This means that the team of divers would have required three days of decompression per dive. But to decompress, one needs a decompression chamber. For a dive involving two divers, the Andromeda would have to have been outfitted with either a two-person Class A decompression chamber, or two single-person Class B chambers, as well as the number of large oxygen bottles needed to operate these chambers over time. \

A simple examination of the interior cabin space of the Bavarian C50 yacht would quickly dispossess one of any notion that either option was viable.

Simply put — no decompression chamber, no dive, no story.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:57

U.N. nuclear watchdog inspectors have found that roughly 2.5 tons of natural uranium have gone missing from a Libyan site that is not under government control, the watchdog told member states in a statement on Wednesday seen by Reuters.

The finding is the result of an inspection originally planned for last year that "had to be postponed because of the security situation in the region" and was finally carried out on Tuesday, according to the confidential statement by International Atomic Energy Agency chief Rafael Grossi.

IAEA inspectors "found that 10 drums containing approximately 2.5 tons of natural uranium in the form of UOC (uranium ore concentrate) previously declared by (Libya) ... as being stored at that location were not present at the location," the one-page statement said.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:54

The 1999 legislation had repealed the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, a pillar of President Roosevelt’s “New Deal” which was put in place in response to the climate of corruption, financial manipulation and “insider trading” which led to more than 5,000 bank failures in the years following the 1929 Wall Street crash. 

Effective control over the entire US financial services industry (including insurance companies, pension funds, securities companies, etc.) had been transferred to a handful of financial conglomerates – which are also the creditors and shareholders of high tech companies, the defense industry, major oil and mining consortia, etc.

Moreover, as underwriters of the public debt at federal, state and municipal levels, the financial giants have also reinforced their stranglehold on politicians, as well as their command over the conduct of public policy.

Rather than taming financial markets in the wake of the storm, Washington was busy pushing through the US Senate legislation, which was to significantly increase the powers of the financial services giants and their associated hedge funds.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:53

Let’s pause right here for a moment. This is far from the first time that the CEO of a questionable bank was sitting on the Board of a Federal Reserve Bank. As Citigroup CEO, Sandy Weill, was burying the bank under off balance sheet vehicles that would eventually crater the bank in 2008; send its stock price to 99 cents in early 2009; and require the largest bank bailout by the Fed in U.S. history, Weill was also serving on the Board of Directors of the New York Fed. And while Jamie Dimon was CEO of JPMorgan Chase and it was losing what eventually grew to $6.2 billion of bank depositors’ money in wild derivative bets in London, Dimon was also sitting on the Board of the New York Fed. Even when there was a big public uproar over Dimon’s presence on the New York Fed Board as the London Whale derivatives scandal came to light, Dimon remained in place.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:53

Most of the Israeli public have been unaware of the existence of the Kohelet Policy Forum or its reach among right-wing parties, and even less of its growing influence on politicians.

Until recently, the right-wing think tank operated relatively quietly, targeting Israeli politicians whose world views were already conservative or those who were understood to be receptive to these principles.

However, in light of the political instability in Israel, and against a background of repeated election campaigns, the Jerusalem-based forum and its messages have gradually become more visible, first to the media and now to the public.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:49

Last Friday, March 10, we had the honor to participate in a medical and constitutional freedom convention in Rochester, New York with attorney and Brownstone Institute Fellow, Bobbie Anne Cox, who was the lead plaintiff attorney in challenging New York Governor Kathy Hochul’s Third Reich style “Isolation and Quarantine Procedures.”

The case (Borrello v Hochul) went to the NY State Supreme Court, and on July 8, 2022, Judge Ronald Ploetz ruled that the “Isolation and Quarantine Procedures” regulation is unconstitutional and “violative of New York State law as promulgated and enacted, and therefore null, void and unenforceable as a matter of law.”

At the event last Friday in Rochester, we applauded Ms. Cox for her victory against Governor Hochul and New York Attorney General, Letitia James. She graciously thanked us, but also reminded us that her adversaries had a few days left to appeal. As Ms. Cox just reported, appeal they did.

After forcing the readmission of COVID-19 positive patients into New York State nursing homes in the spring of 2020—thereby causing the largest COVID-19 mass casualty event in the country—New York State administrators decided they need greater emergency powers for responding to infectious disease outbreaks.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:49

Thousands of workers at hospitals, schools and railways across Sri Lanka have gone on strike to protest against high costs of living, including increased taxes imposed as a precondition for an International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout, amid the country’s worst financial crisis in decades.

Schools on Wednesday cancelled term tests and outpatient departments at hospitals closed due to the public sector work stoppage that involved more than 40 trade unions. Fewer vehicles were seen on roads.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:48

China's efforts to broker improved relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia have caught the US by surprise, with officials, and members of the Washington establishment, scrambling to brush off concerns that American influence in the region is waning.

On Monday, State Department Spokesperson Ned Price said the US supported the talks "every step of the way," and downplayed China's role in burying the hatchet between the regional foes.

"This was not about the PRC [People's Republic of China]. This was about what Iran and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia committed to."

Posted on: Mar 16 07:46

Israel’s regional policy has long been based on hegemony, superiority and arrogance. Leaders Shimon Peres and Benjamin Netanyahu often repeated the notion of an alliance based on “Israeli brains and Arab money”, while also promoting the concept of protecting Arab regimes with Israeli intelligence technologies and strategies for economic peace.

The aim was always twofold: to achieve normalisation and bolster Israel’s regional influence, and to accelerate the disappearance of the Palestinian cause.

For Israel, Iran presented an opportunity to ally with Arab states on both an economic-security basis and a strategic basis, with regards to confronting their “mutual enemy”. In this way, Israel has sought a multilateral strategy: a regional alliance under the auspices of the US, seeking to declare war on Iran and overthrow the regime.

Posted on: Mar 16 07:46