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Turkiye’s Erdogan Flips Syria on its Head

Turkiye’s Erdogan Flips Syria on its Head

erdogan-putin-s400s-turkey

While we are all, rightfully, worried about what’s going on in Ukraine, those sneaky Russians are shoring up their situation on the south shores of the Black Sea and Eastern Mediterranean.

As reported last week the meeting between Russia, Turkiye, and Syria took place between their Defense Ministers where they all described the talks as ‘constructive’ towards solving multiple outstanding issues like refugees and the backing of radicals.

This meeting was put in motion by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as the Moscow Times article notes:

In November, Erdogan said a meeting with Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad was a possibility, after cutting diplomatic ties with Damascus throughout the 11-year conflict.

In mid-December, he indicated that he could meet with Assad after the two countries’ defense and foreign ministers meet.

“We want to take a step as Syria, Turkey and Russia,” [emphasis mine] he said at the time.

The issues discussed are especially important for Erdogan as the protracted war is sapping his popularity at home in the face of an ongoing pull out of western capital from Turkey that has seen the lira go through what can only be described as a hyperinflation since 2018.

With elections on the horizon and Erdogan’s position tenuous for the first time in his political career, moves need to be made now to improve things. Allowing the millions of Syrian refugees the opportunity to go home would be a big win for Erdogan politically.

This is also a good use of Sergei Shoigu, the Russian Defense Minister, since he’s not in charge of the operation in Ukraine and hasn’t been since October, with good reason.

Shoigu, I’m sure, has been preparing for this meeting for months, laying the groundwork for talks between Turkiye and Syria that are long overdue.

…click on the above link to read the rest…

EU’s Oil Price Cap Creates a Price Cap… on Stupidity

EU’s Oil Price Cap Creates a Price Cap… on Stupidity

MOSCOW, RUSSIA – DECEMBER 1, 2021: Russia’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova gives a weekly press briefing. Russian Foreign Ministry/TASS

The EU and the US went forward with their long-debated, long-telegraphed move to put a price cap on Russian oil at $60 per barrel.

By believing they can pressure suppliers into not hauling Russian oil lest they run afoul of the sanctions that support the price cap, they believe they can take only Russian oil off the market for the long run.

Because of the way oil is actually traded in the real world, versus the way it trades in Janet Yellen’s head, this policy is actually much harder to implement than it actually looks. You don’t buy oil at the crude oil counter at Target or Wal-Mart.

There isn’t a price tag you can look at and say yes or no too. As Tsvetana Paraskova at Oilprice points out, crude contracts are written based on a discount or premium to a benchmark price at a particular moment in time.

“Physical traders rarely trade on a fixed price,” John Driscoll, chief strategist at JTD Energy Services Pte Ltd, told Bloomberg.

“It’s a much more complex space where they trade on formulas and spot differentials to a benchmark crude for the trading of actual cargoes as well as for hedging that follows,” said Driscoll, who has more than 30 years of trading oil in Singapore.

…click on the above link to read the rest…

The $31 Trillion Dollar Question – Can The Fed Afford to Pivot?

The $31 Trillion Dollar Question – Can The Fed Afford to Pivot?

In my other role as a secret apologist for Russia and Vladimir Putin, I was contacted yesterday by Sputnik News to comment on the official US debt number surpassing $31 trillion. I’m always grateful for the opportunity to talk about these issues.

I am, after all, a fiscal hawk extraordinaire,.

At the same time, I’m completely hip to why Sputnik (and RT) wanted to discuss this issue. They are running their own framing campaign, propaganda if you will. I’m no one’s useful idiot when it comes to these matters.

They may have been looking for a dissident American voice to berate the US for its reckless spending, which fits the Russian media narrative that the US cannot sustain its current pressure campaign against Russia.

This is meant to counter the West’s narrative that Russia can’t sustain its military operations in Ukraine.

Hey, everyone’s got a truth to tell. I get it, it’s a war out there. All I can do is make the best use of the opportunities in front of me and tell my version of those truths. Because talking about things truthfully may actually get us one step back on the path towards peace rather than global war. That said, if I see no upside to the opportunity, the best thing to do is turn it down politely and wait for the next one.

At the same time we all have to realize that Russian media outlets have a hard time booking guests at this point due to the massive political pressure. So, as always, I see the opportunity as a way to talk to everyone to further understanding these things, not just feed one side’s attempt to shift the Overton Window.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Curious Whodunit of Nordstreams 1 and 2

The Curious Whodunit of Nordstreams 1 and 2

The old world broke this week. It was blown up cynically by someone who thought this would advance their agenda the most.

The act of vandalizing a major piece of physical infrastructure, targeting civilian populations, isn’t unprecedented in history, but it does signal that everything we thought we knew about the rules of the current game was wrong.

Well, for most people anyway.

When I spoke in June at the Ron Paul Institute Conference on Foreign Policy I described the game of geopolitics as a seven-player game of the ancient Chinese game, Go.

And in that game we’ve reached an inflection point where some factions are coalescing and others are splintering. The faction that is unwilling to compromise on their future is the most dangerous one at the table.

My conclusion then was that those ‘who think they are entitled to run the world’ will flip the game board.

They will change the rules of the game without remorse or a case in the world for those they harm and the aftereffects of their actions. In fact, the chaos they engender is preferable to them than losing.

We got the first inkling of this when the West didn’t just freeze Russia’s foreign exchange reserves but seized them.

Now undersea assets in international waters are fair game. The good news it that this flipping of the game board was only a couple of gas pipelines. The potential is still for something far more unthinkable, not that that’s off the table.

In the immediate aftermath of proof the pipelines were blown up everyone (including myself) came forward with their theory as to who did it. Sadly, I can construct arguments for nearly every major player in the game having done this.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Media: Why the Fed Raised 75 bps and How to Break the Davos Crowd

Media: Why the Fed Raised 75 bps and How to Break the Davos Crowd

I sat down for a long chat with my good friend Crypto Rich over the weekend and have just found the 20 minutes to post them here. We did a series of videos, Duran-style, on a number of topics. They are all below.

With the Fed raising by 75 bps yesterday I have to believe we’ve reached a major turning point in the War Against Davos. The deflation of asset prices and, most especially the Eurodollar markets is putting many other, over-leveraged central banks on a path towards bankruptcy.

There are a ton of moving parts, a lot of factions now warring against each other. When cartels break, the former members of the cartel always turn on each other. It was always going to be this way. Davos turned on its allies in the US commercial banking sector and they fought back.

Hard.

Everything I wrote about in my last post — SOFR/LIBOR spreads, US/German 10 year Spreads, Lagarde’s incompetence — were proven correct in the response yesterday by the markets to Powell’s hawkishness.

Davos has spent so long and so much money trying to convince us to ‘abandon all hope’ but it is they who now can do nothing but ‘enter here’ into our dragon’s den of asset deflation. The adjustment will be biblical. It will be painful.

And it didn’t have to be this way, but the solipsism and arrogance of evil people who have always known power and feel entitled to wield it in perpetuity is boundless.

Enjoy the rants and the wailing and gnashing of teeth by the very worst people in the world today.

The links below are to the videos on Odysee

Part 1 of the main talk

Part 2 of the main talk

How to Break the Great Reset

The Big Questions We Should All Be Asking Geopolitically

The Big Questions We Should All Be Asking Geopolitically

To say that current events are ‘messy’ today would be the height of understatement. Everyday the headlines blare at us some new set of contradictory data points convincing us of some lie that serves someone’s purpose.

No matter how hard we try to keep up with things, cutting out the extraneous to find the nuggets of signal from the jungle of noise is more than a full-time job.

Sometimes, however, it’s best to take a few steps back, fall back on first principles and remind ourselves who the players are, what they want and then ask the big question of each of them… are they succeeding?

But to even ask that question we have to ask ourselves honestly the following question:

“What will they be willing to do to survive under present circumstances?”

This is the most uncomfortable question you can ever ask anyone. What would you do to survive? To protect your family? Your position? Your conception of yourself?

Everyone’s morality has limits. Everyone. Everyone has a shadow, a dark side, a place where they retreat to their Hobbesian self and see the world purely in terms of ‘a war of all against all.’ Anyone who refuses to admit this to themselves is someone you should run screaming from.

Those that always claim the moral high ground, who are always “the goodies!” are those without limits on their behavior. As the great H.L. Mencken proclaimed nearly 70 years ago:

The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it. Power is what all messiahs really seek: not the chance to serve. This is true even of the pious brethren who carry the gospel to foreign parts.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Real Reason Behind the EU’s Drive to Embargo Russian Oil

The Real Reason Behind the EU’s Drive to Embargo Russian Oil

This week the European Union is expected to announce a complete import ban on Russian oil. Hungary, in its first real act of defiance, is threatening to veto this; Germany, after some hemming and hawing, has finally decided it can survive such a ban.

Assuming Hungary’s objections are eventually overcome, at first blush this looks like yet another energy “own goal” by the people obsessed with soccer. The U.S. has already issued this ban.

Because European industry is heavily dependent on Russian oil and gas, the conventional wisdom is that the EU Commission is just petulant and incompetent.

Are they petulant? Yes. Incompetent? Possibly? But only if you think in conventional terms of doing the right thing for their people. What is clear to any serious observer of EU politics is that they are not interested in what their people have to say or want.

Theirs is an agenda which will brook no opposition, even if it means destroying its own economy to bring a rival to its knees.

That said, I sincerely doubt there will be a “buyers embargo” on natural gas because there is no viable substitute for it.

Hungary is using the need for unanimous consent within the European Council to block any ‘gas ban’ in any new economic sanctions package. There are at least three other countries which are happy Hungary is willing to suffer Brussels’ wrath.

But banning Russian oil, on the other hand, is different.

So, it is interesting that Hungary would do this, given they import no oil from Russia. {Ed. this is wrong, Hungary imports 65% of its oil through the Druzhba pipeline} This veto was predicted by me the morning after the Hungarians overwhelmingly rejected George Soros’s anti-Viktor Orban coalition and handed it an ignominious defeat.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Ins and Outs of Whose Money is it Anyway?

The Ins and Outs of Whose Money is it Anyway?

“Inside, Outside…. Leave me alone!
Inside, Outside … Nowhere is home!
Inside, Outside … Where have I been?
Out of my brain on the 5:15…”
— The Who

There’s been a massive reaction to Credit Suisse analyst Zoltan Poszar’s note about the birth of a new Bretton Woods agreement.

Every investor in the world should read it. Zerohedge posted (behind their paywall) a lengthy analysis of Poszar’s musing along with some reactions from Wall St. It is well worth your time.

The people most freaked out about this note are the Keynesians who worship at the altar of what Poszar calls Inside Money — money that only exists inside the financial system, bonds, credit, dollars, euros, etc.

Austrians, like myself, have always understood that eventually Inside Money fails because it is ultimately nothing more than a Ponzi Scheme built on top of Outside Money — money that exists outside the financial system, like commodities and bitcoin.

Poszar makes his early case and then goes through the mechanics of what is happening in the financial plumbing of the world economy right now to prove the stresses are real and building quickly towards an implosion of Inside Money and an explosion of Outside Money.

Again, anyone with a passing acquaintance with Austrian business cycle theory and Mises’ Theory of Money and Credit always knew this day was coming.

Today’s “Inside Money” standard, known colloquially as the Dollar Reserve standard, is actually what I like to call “Milton Friedman’s Nightmare.” It is nothing more than a system of competitively devalued and inflated debt-based scrips running around drinking each other’s milkshakes until everyone’s glass is empty.

FYI, there are a lot of empty glasses around the world right now and more are being created everyday as the financial system turned predatory after the Lehman Bros. collapse in 2008.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Opening Salvos Thrown – What Are Putin’s Next Steps in Ukraine?

Opening Salvos Thrown – What Are Putin’s Next Steps in Ukraine?

Last week I wrote that Russian President Vladimir Putin rewrote the rules for the geopolitical game board. A week into his campaign to officially “demilitarize and de-Nazify Ukraine” it’s clear to me that Putin’s ambitions lie far beyond this stated goal.

He will, however, stick to that script until that part of the campaign is complete.

Today I want to start outlining where we go next and to do that we have to describe where we are.

Looking around the reports that are the most credible (and properly bracketing for any partisanship) we are staring at a complete, effective neutralization of the Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF) to hold any of the ethnically-dominant areas of Ukraine.

In a post for my patrons on February 25th, responding to an excellent article by Alistair MacLeod I wrote the following:

MacLeodBoth sides probably do not know how fragile the Eurozone banking system is, with both the ECB and its national central bank shareholders already having liabilities greater than their assets. In other words, rising interest rates have broken the euro system and an economic and financial catastrophe on its eastern flank will probably trigger its collapse.

I’ve been banging my shoe on this table for 3 years now.  If the US/NATO respond with some kind of guerilla war here to hang Ukraine like an albatross around Putin’s neck, as we should expect, then Europe is in big trouble financially.

Because the financial war will keep escalating as Putin responds militarily.  Remember, he’s openly threatened the ‘decision makers’ here.  And no amount of mealy-mouthed CIA/MI6 disinformation will deter him from action anymore.

This is always what I meant by “spooks start civil wars, militaries end them.”  There is no more War for Ukraine.

I still believe that. This isn’t a war for Ukraine, it’s a war for the future of the entire world. Ukraine represents the hill both Davos and Russia have chosen to live or die on.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Putin Ushers in the New Geopolitical Game Board

Putin Ushers in the New Geopolitical Game Board

Up until February 23rd, 2022, the powerful countries of the world played a very rarified game.

Too many people try to analyze geopolitics like it is a game of chess. Move, counter-move. Push a pawn? Threaten a knight, that type of thing. It’s easy to understand and makes for good copy.

In the past I’ve tried to liken it to a multi-player version of Go, with anywhere from four to 6 different colored stones on the board trying to take territory. It was a better metaphor but nearly impossible to describe adequately. In fact, at times, it was exhausting.

The reality is that neither of these metaphors are explanatory.

Because the only accurate model for geopolitics is actually Calvinball.

You know that game. That’s the one from Calvin & Hobbes.

Contrary to your memory of the legendary comic strip, there were rules to Calvinball that went something like this: Calvin got to make the rules up as he went along.

In geopolitics it pretty much comes down to whoever is the strongest player got that power.

Here’s the thing. Up until Russia’s invasion of Ukraine (and yes, it is an invasion, justifiable or otherwise) there was something called the ‘rules-based order’ promoted mainly by the US but also supported directly by the European Union and the Commonwealth.

The rules of the ‘rules-based order’ were simple. We make the rules, you follow them. We reserve the right to change the rules whenever we want to suit our purpose.

It was the geopolitical equivalent of Sam Francis’ idea of ‘anarcho-tyranny,’ which boils down to, “rules for thee, but not for me.”

We’ve heard the Russian diplomats complain about this for years. Why have these rules if they are not ever enforced?

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Bitcoin, 2022 and the Real Story Behind COVID-9/11

Bitcoin, 2022 and the Real Story Behind COVID-9/11

I don’t necessarily like to do so-called ‘annual prediction’ posts. Having written a ton of them for the newsletters I’ve written over the years, looking back on them is always a bit cringe-inducing. But 2021 was a crazy year and one where so much happened that changed the landscape it looks like one of those necessary evils for 2022.

In fact, I may wind up doing more than I normally do.

After being on Bitcoin Magazine’s Fed Watch podcast in December, I was asked to do a 2022 Predictions article for them.

It just dropped over there.

IS 2022 THE YEAR BITCOIN PROVES ITSELF ON THE WORLD STAGE?

It was a fascinating year for cryptos. One in which no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t keep up with everything that happened. Going to Bitcoin 2021 in Miami and seeing the clash of OG bitcoiners with the gold rush mentality of the industry it reminded me of the best of times at your typical precious metals conference.

Hey, even Ron Paul was there, which is always a treat.

But that said, 2021 was as strange as any year I’ve ever experienced. The real clash wasn’t in the various crypto fiefdoms per se, but what the emergence of crypto as a full-fledged investible asset class meant that grabbed and held my attention all year.

It was beyond the regular bull market mentality that morphed into mania by mid-year. It was the realization that bitcoin and crypto would begin asserting its potential as a safe-haven asset that was finally proven to more than just us fringe Austro-libertarian types.

Because of this the responses from what Michael Malice calls The Cathedral and what I call The Davos Crowd is what the real story was in 2021.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Davos is Making the Central Bank Case for Gold

Davos is Making the Central Bank Case for Gold

A few months ago I talked about the upcoming changes to the way adoption of Basel III’s new bank reserve rules would alter the gold market. In short my conclusion was similar to that of Alistair MacLeod’s and others, that Basel III should collapse the egregious manipulation of the gold market through the use of using futures and unallocated gold as bank reserves.

In May I wrote:

In effect, Basel III, if implemented in its current form, would change the gold market from a speculative one based on perceptions of the efficacy of monetary policy to control real interest rates to one that should force price discovery in an almost purely physical market. As I told my Patrons in May 16th’s Market Report video, physical gold will go from being the price taker to the price maker.   

I didn’t then nor do I think now that will happen immediately after Basel III goes into effect in the U.K. on January 1st. But I do think the recent weakness in gold has been an early sign of stress within the gold market brought on by the upcoming rules implementations.

And that has sent gold lower in recent weeks despite rising inflation and falling real interest rates. Of course this is because the markets have been overpricing the ‘transitory inflation’ argument put forth by the major central banks.

So, when Jerome Powell came out, in his first important statement post-reappointment announcement, and put a fork in ‘transitory’ inflation the markets were properly shocked. This happened on the heels of OmicronVID-9/11 dominating the headlines and also creating some overblown market reactions thanks to poorly-programmed headline trading algorithms.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Fed Says, “Let Me Squeeze Your Dollars…5 Basis Points at a Time”

The Fed Says, “Let Me Squeeze Your Dollars…5 Basis Points at a Time”

I still maintain no one will mark June 16th, 2021 as the day the world changed. Watching the dollar surge into this weekend thanks to a breakdown in the euro only validates that conclusion in my mind.

Remember, on June 16th Presidents Biden and Putin met for a summit which altered the course of geopolitics forever, agreeing to disagree about Nordstream 2 and reversing the worst of U.S./Russian relations among other things.

While that was happening the FOMC met and reversed the flow of dollars globally.

I told my Patrons something was up on June 18th. Then I did 2 hours worth of podcasts on it (herehere, and here) after thinking it through. Finally, after fully digesting it I wrapped it all up in a lengthy post on July 3rd.

The Fed’s decision to pay 5 basis point on Reverse Repos was the subtlest but most effective way to taper without tapering, tighten without tightening and undermine the WEF’s Great Reset while seemingly still supporting it.

I can hear the howls from the gallery who think otherwise so I’ll address them first.

Yes, normie macro-guys, the bond market has been screaming at the Fed that inflation is soaring and they need to raise rates.

Yes, first year domestic policy students, the Fed looks like it is putting pressure on Republicans to cave to Nancy Pelosi’s hardball over the Infrastructure, Budget and Debt Ceiling deadlock, so far to no avail.

Yes, second year geopolitics students, the Fed is forcing China to respond to soaring commodity prices while simultaneously trying to defend the yuan.

Yes, these are all effects of the Fed’s move in June.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

From the Notebook: Killing All the Birds With One Pile of Gold

From the Notebook: Killing All the Birds With One Pile of Gold

French President Emmanuel Macron, whose poll numbers are abysmal and needs a sincere shot in the arm, just gave away the plot with his outside voice.  I’ve noticed this trend within The Davos Crowd in recent months, speaking with their outside voice what they only ever talk about internally.

That plot, by the way, is to transfer power over the global money supply to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by eventually doing away with individual central banks.

To that end Macron’s latest proposal is to bailout Africa because COVID by coordinating $100 billion in gold sales of national reserves of the G-7. Who would they sell that gold to? The IMF. That money can then be distributed by the IMF, expanding the supply of SDRs — Special Drawing Rights — using the gold as collateral for the development loans.

He’s talking about $100 billion here.  That’s around 1600 tonnes of gold at current prices.  32150.7 ounces/tonne x $1900 per ounce. $0.06109 billion per tonne.  1610 tonnes of gold.

Now, interestingly, a reader on Twitter put a lot of pieces together with this, saying, in effect that this is the humanitarian cover story for the upcoming liquidation of Italy.

Having spoken with the Mittdolcino.com, an Italian blog with a similar mission, it is well understood within Italian circles that his liquidation of Italy is well underway and Mario Draghi was put in power to effect this.

Italy, officially, has 2450 tonnes of gold, give or take.  Macron can ask them to pony up because they owe at least that much to the ECB and Germany through TARGET2.  Draghi has already made it explicit that there will be no Italeave without paying that debt…

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Fauci Files, The WuFlu and the War to Come

The Fauci Files, The WuFlu and the War to Come

Isn’t is amazing how quickly things seem to change when it’s in the interest of those that think they run the world? For years we’ve been trying to get access to Hillary Clinton’s missing e-mails as Secretary of State but to no avail. However, at the most opportune time in the collapsing COVID story, Dr. Anthony Fauci’s emails are uncovered and broadcast to the world.

The same mechanism, FOIA, that Hillary has stonewalled us on for six years uncovers Fauci’s emails in six weeks?

Doesn’t that strike you as just the slightest bit odd?

Fauci was the hero bureaucrat facing down the evil and ignorant President Trump over COVID-19. He became a national celebrity playing down treatments like Hydroxychloroquine and Ivermectin, flip-flopped on wearing masks and running cover for a corrupt WHO/CDC while whitewashing his own involvement in COVID’s origin.

For all intents and purposes this lying, evil, Janus-faced troll set policy for the entire country.

And from the moment anyone broke a story about the origins of COVID-19, the damage control began behind the scenes and the public shaming and deplatforming began.

And democrats of all stripes cheered him on, simply because he came with the right credentials and an antipathy to Trump.

As the face of the the scientific establishment, he terrorized millions into submission of Americans using fear over a virus not much more deadly than the annual flu. His constant changing the goalposts on ending lockdowns and spread prevention guidelines while needing to remain in front of the narrative kept people crazy with imaginary death statistics, fraudulent models and overwrought case counts while elevating the prevention principle beloved by state-worshipping Boomers and their younger ‘adjacents’ to its most ludicrous extreme.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
In progress...

Olduvai II: Exodus
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