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Edited by Alfred Adask
Friday, July 15, AD 2016
Between Friday, July 8 AD 2016 and 
Friday, July 15, AD 2016,  the bid prices for:
Gold fell 2.1 % from $1,365.40 to $1,337.10
Silver fell 0.2 % from $20.25 to $20.20
Platinum fell 0.3 % from $1,095 to $1,092
Palladium rose 5.0 % from $616 to $647
Crude Oil rose2.5 % from $45.14 to $46.28

US Dollar Index rose 0.4 % from 96.27 to 96.68
DJIA rose 2.0 % from 18,146.74 to 18,516.55

NASDAQ rose 1.5 % from 4,956.76 to 5,029.59
NYSE rose 1.9 % from 10,571.80 to 10,773.10
S&P 500 rose 1.5 % from 2,129.90 to 2,161.74  

"Only buy something that you'd be perfectly happy to hold
if the market shut down for 10 years." --Warren Buffett 

"If the markets shut down for 10 years, what investment would you dare to hold-- 
other than gold"? --Alfred Adask

"Helicopter Money"

by Alfred Adask
Control of the economy is based on two sets of powers;
1)   The Federal Reserve wields the monetary powers which include control over interest rate and over the supply of currency.
2)  The U.S. government wields the fiscal powers which include raising or lowering taxes, raising or lowering borrowing, and increasing or decreasing government spending on benefits, subsidies and wars.
For the past year, we've heard the Federal Reserve say repeatedly that: 
1) The Federal Reserve has exhausted its monetary powers and is no longer capable of using previous, "conventional" monetary strategies like QE (Quantitative Easing; printing and injecting more currency into the economy) and ZIRP (near-Zero Interest Rate Policy) to stimulate the economy back to a "recovery".
I believe the Federal Reserve's claims that it's currently helpless to do much more to "stimulate" the economy with monetary policy are true.
If the Fed's not fibbing, then only the U.S. government remains to engineer an economic "recovery" by means of its fiscal policy.   However,
2)  The U.S. government is unwilling or unable use its fiscal powers to raise taxes and/or borrow more currency to provide enough additional "stimulation" to cause an economic recovery. 
The problem appears to be debt.  Since the Great Recession began in A.D. 2008, the government sold U.S. bonds (debt instruments; promises to pay) to the Federal Reserve in exchange for fiat dollars that were then spent, loaned or otherwise injected into the U.S. economy.  The government went into debt (issuing bonds) in order to acquire more fiat dollars from the Fed.  
As a result of its desperate determination to stimulate the U.S. economy, the U.S. government's "official" National Debt has doubled from $9.7 trillion in A.D. 2011 to nearly $20 trillion, today.   It took about 220 years for the National Debt to reach $9.7 trillion in A.D. 2011.  It took just five more years, for that debt to double to $20 trillion in A.D. 2016.  
Most Americans, if they even bother to consider the recent, extraordinary growth of the National Debt, find that doubling to be unremarkable.  No big deal, right?  The government can handle it, can't they?
I don't think so.  I think that doubling the official National Debt in just five years (primarily for the purpose of stimulating the U.S. economy) is scary. 
First, government spent an incredible amount of borrowed currency to stimulate the U.S. and global economies and received almost nothing in return.  The U.S. economy didn't collapse, but it didn't recover, either.  The fact that so much additional fiat currency failed to stimulate a recovery is evidence of enormous systemic problems that are still present and likely to soon collapse our economy.
Second, as I've argued for years, the National Debt has grown too large to ever be repaid in full or even by 50%.  Sooner of later, government will be forced to admit that it can't pay the National Debt.  When that happens, the whole debt-based monetary system and debt-based economy will slide into calamity.
Third, the National Debt has grown so huge that the U.S. government is at least reluctant, and perhaps even unable, to go deeper into debt.  Some think we're at or near "peak debt".  If so, the U.S. government can't borrow enough additional currency from the Federal Reserve and/or private American and foreign investors to stimulate the economy to the same extent seen in QE episodes 1, 2 and 3.
We seem to be between the rock and the hard place. 
But what if government could cause more fiat dollars to be injected into the economy without going any deeper into debt?
*  Casey Research published an article entitled, "Let's Try Giving Out Free Cash".  The title alone is fascinating:  simultaneously attractive (we'd all like to receive "free cash") and repulsive (how can real money be "free"?). 
Yes, yes-when you were a kid, it was great when Aunt Jane gave you a Christmas card that held a $100 bill.  As a child, you loved that "free money".   But, as an adult, isn't the idea of "free cash" to everyone (not just you) a little unnerving?
According to Casey Research, in order to finally cause the fabled economic "recovery",
" Central bankers are considering " helicopter money ".
"Economist Milton Friedman coined the term 'helicopter money' in the 1960s. He said the government could drop free cash from helicopters to stimulate the economy. People would spend the free money, causing the economy to grow.
According to Ben Bernanke, "Helicopter money could prove a valuable tool since it should work even when more conventional monetary policies are ineffective and the initial level of government debt is high."
Note Bernanke's reference to the "level of government debt" being "high" (maybe "too high"?).   Bernanke implies that "helicopter money" is a consequence of extremely high government debt.  But what, exactly, is the nature of the relationship between high government debt and "helicopter money"?
As you'll read, the fundamental idea behind true "helicopter money" may be that it's possible to inject more fiat currency into the economy without increasing the already-unpayable National Debt.
Casey Research continues:
"To implement, the government would likely give out free cash by mailing checks to people, or depositing money directly into people's bank accounts.
"Friedman likely never took the cartoonish idea seriously. For a long time, no one else did either-until recently, when f ormer Fed chairman Ben Bernanke said helicopter money could be 'worth a shot'."
" Worth a shot"?  Is that how the geniuses at the Federal Reserve run the economy?  Based on strategies that might be "worth a shot"?!   Let's roll the dice and see what happens?
Again, we see evidence that no one is really in control.  The economy is being run as an experiment to test new theories rather than as an entity that's well-understood and subject to predictable control.
Mr. Bernanke's "worth a shot" language reveals just how little real control the Fed has over the economy.  He does not inspire confidence.
Bernanke continued:
"Under certain extreme circumstances [our economy's circumstances are now deemed to be 'extreme']-sharply deficient aggregate demand [people aren't purchasing and consuming enough goods and services to stimulate the economy] , . . . exhausted monetary policy[the Federal Reserve has become helpless and unable to cause an economic 'recovery'] , andunwillingness of the legislature to use debt-financed fiscalpolicies[Congress is unwilling or unable to go deeper into debt to stimulate the economy and is therefore also, like the Fed, helpless and unable to cause an economic 'recovery']-such programs ['helicopter money'] may be the best available alternative.  It would be premature to rule them out."
In other words, the Fed and the government have tried everything else and exhausted the Fed's monetary powers and the government's fiscal powers without success.  Therefore, Bernanke recommends that the drowning Federal Reserve try grasping at the "straw" of last resort:  "helicopter money".
Bernanke's reference to the "unwillingness of the legislature to use debt-financedfiscalpolicies" strikes me as odd.  He didn't expressly say so, but he faintly implied that since Congress can't or won't go deeper into debt to stimulate the economy (as they did with QEs 1, 2, and 3), then maybe the Federal Reserve could still simply print "helicopter money" without government being forced to print and issue more U.S. bonds.  
Recognizing that government can't or won't go deeper into debt, Bernanke seems to say, "OK-let's bow to reality.  If government can't issue, say, another $5 trillion in bonds to be sold to the Fed in return for $5 trillion in fiat currency, then the Fed should simply print and distribute another $5 trillion in 'helicopter money' that is unbacked by government bonds.
The Fed would simply issue fiat dollars directly to the people or to the government, without demanding a U.S. government bond in return.  
No bond; no debt.
Again, Bernanke didn't actually say that, but it makes some sense.  After all, why issue government bonds to the Federal Reserve in return for more fiat currency, if the bonds will never be repaid, anyway?   Why waste time printing U.S. bonds that won't ever be repaid?  Why not eliminate the government bonds and let the Fed simply print however much "helicopter money" (unbacked by even the illusion of U.S. bonds) seems necessary to stimulate an economic recovery?    
If the idea of issuing fiat dollars without government first selling bonds to the Fed seems fantastic, remember that both President Lincoln issued "greenbacks" during the Civil War and President Kennedy attempted to issued "greenbacks" in the 1960s.  In both instances, these "greenbacks" were issued by the U.S. Treasury and weren't tied to the Federal Reserve or backed by U.S. bonds or gold.   (Coincidentally, both Lincoln and Kennedy were assassinated.)  My point is that a kind of "helicopter money" has actually been issued by Lincoln and was attempted by Kennedy.  The concept of currency creation without debt creation is not unprecedented. 
Bernanke's proposed "helicopter money" would be virtually identical to Monopoly Money.  It would be absolutely nothing more than pieces of paper and electronic digits without the least trace or illusion of being backed by U.S. bonds.   "Helicopter money" wouldn't even result in paying 1% interest on bonds.  This "helicopter money" would be functionally identical to the quadrillion-dollar bills issued by Zimbabwe in A.D. 2009.
If so, "helicopter money" could be code for hyperinflation-the unlimited printing of fiat currency.  Has Bernanke subtly proposed the government and Fed implement hyperinflation?
Casey Research continued:
"After all, the Fed has created 3.5 trillion new "helicopter" dollars since 2008--and given most of those dollars to 'too big to fail banks'."
Not necessarily.
Suppose my speculation-that real "helicopter money" is, by definition, unbacked by any U.S. bonds-turned out to be true.  If so, the $3.5 trillion created by the Fed since A.D. 2008 would not be true "helicopter money" since it was all backed by U.S. bonds.  It was not completely "free" currency since, even if the principal represented by these U.S. bonds were not repaid, they still paid interest.  However, if "helicopter money" was not backed by U.S. bonds, the issue of such currency wouldn't even cost any interest.
Perhaps, the last times we saw true "helicopter money" were in our own Civil War in the 1860s, in the Weimar Republic in the early 1930s, and in Zimbabwe during the 2000's.  That's when governments tried to inflate or hyperinflate their debts away by printing pure fiat currency unbacked by gold or government bonds-but only succeeded in diminishing or destroying their own currencies and economies.
Could it be that smiling Ben Bernanke's recommendation of "helicopter money" is nothing more than an admission that the economy is so fragile, so certain to implode anyway (and soon), that Fed might just as well try to buy a few more years by instigating hyperinflation?   Is the Fed faced with choosing between:  1) dying of "natural (economic) causes" within the next six months; and, 2) committing a slow suicide by hyperinflation that won't kill it for another three years?
*  I believe big government's "days of wine and roses and unlimited borrowing" are just about finished. 
If government is so deeply in debt that it can't go much deeper into debt, government has only four options left to escape or at least postpone its current debt problems:  1) raise taxes; 2) cut benefits and spending;  3) expressly repudiate the existing National Debt by declaring (admitting?) it's bankrupt; and/or, 4) initiate hyperinflation to stealthily reduce the real value (purchasing power) of the government's debt; or
Raising taxes is bad politics since it will make the masses scream.
Likewise, cutting benefits and spending is also bad politics since it will make government dependents riot.
Government would rather expressly declare WWIII than declare/admit that it's bankrupt.
That leaves hyperinflation as the only option that won't (initially) make the voters scream.  An episode of, say, 50% hyperinflation could effectively reduce the existing debt by 50%.  If we had 90% hyperinflation, the existing debt could be reduced by 90%.  Once the existing debt was sufficiently reduced, creditors might again be willing to lend massive amounts of currency to our government. 
If "helicopter money" is a pure, fiat currency that's unbacked by U.S. bonds and therefore doesn't add to the National Debt, it sounds like a code for hyperinflation.
Ben Bernanke expressly recommended "helicopter money".  Was he really recommending hyperinflation as the "next big theory" to be tested on our experimental economy?
*  Relatively speaking, "Happy Days" may be here again and might remain until after next November's election.  After that, Katy bar the door!  Our happy daze of big borrowing, near-zero interest rates, low inflation, low taxes and substantial entitlements and subsidies may vanish into the mists and myths of time.  America may soon be forced to face and accept economic reality rather than economic fantasies like QE, ZIRP and "helicopter money".
I doubt that any of us will like the coming reality.  I also doubt that any of us can stop it from coming-not even with "helicopter money".

Good News/Bad News for English Pensioners

by Alfred Adask reports in "UK's Royal Mint will sell pension investors gold they can never see" that,
"The Royal Mint in England is to open up its gold vaults to UK pension investors.  The Royal Mint will make some of its gold bars available to investors wanting to hold it in tax-efficient pension pots.
"For UK citizens, this is the first time that Royal Mint gold bullion has been authorised by HM [Her Majesty's] Revenue & Customs . . . for holding in specific pensions.
"Investors are to be offered a choice of bullion, from Royal Mint Refinery 100-gram and 1-kilogram bars, to Signature Gold-a service that allows customers to purchase and own a share of a 400-ounce gold bar."
Sounds pretty good.  However, here comes the punch line:
"Pension investors purchasing gold bars through the Royal Mint will not be able to take delivery of their purchases as they will be placed in storage in 'The Vault,' the Royal Mint's secure storage facility in Wales."
And, according to the title of the article, pension investors won't be able to even see the gold they've allegedly purchased.
So, the good news is that English pensioners can invest in physical gold to protect their pensions.
The bad news is that they'll not only never be able take delivery of the gold they've purchased-they'll never even be able to see their gold.
It's kinda like buying an alleged Canadian gold mine where you can never look into the mine or remove any of the alleged gold.  How can you really know if there's really any gold in that mine?
It's also a little like the U.S. government and Federal Reserve claiming to hold about 8,200 tons of physical gold that belongs to the People of The United States of America that We the People have nevertheless been unable to audit or even see since A.D. 1953.  Government's refusal to let us see and audit our gold inspires conspiracy theories that maybe our gold is gone.
In fact, given the close relationship between the governments of the U.S. and England, it wouldn't be surprising if one of those governments had secretly sold off most of its gold, the other would've secretly done the same.
In any case, when English pensioners invest in gold allegedly held in the Royal Mint that can't be seen and won't be delivered, how do those pensioners know that there's really any gold in the Royal Mint?  Are they really buying some physical gold?  Or are they just giving their currency to the government under false and fraudulent pretenses and in return for non-existent gold?
*  This whole story sounds so bizarre, that I can't help suspecting that it signals that the English government is colossally stupid or colossally desperate. 
Can the English government really believe that the English people will buy into to a scheme where government will sell gold that can't ever be seen or delivered?
If so, I wish that the English pensioners would give me a call because I, too, have several tons of gold to sell that can't be seen or delivered.  (I keep it in a shoe box on the shelf in my closet.)  Plus, when it comes to selling unseeable, undeliverable gold, I'm confident that I can give pensioners a much better price than the Royal Mint.  
*  This Royal Mint story makes me wonder if the English government is so broke and so desperate that it will scrounge up cash any way it can-even by selling non-existent gold.  
I can't believe that the English government is trying to sell gold that can't be seen and won't be delivered out of ignorance.   I must therefore conclude that the English government is so broke that, out of desperation, it will grab any cash it can find or finagle.
This Royal Mint story suggests that England's government may be on its last fiscal legs. 
Who knows?  Maybe Brexit was so fiercely opposed by former Prime Minister David Cameron and many government officials because they knew the English government was nearly bankrupt and feared that the potential financial consequences of Brexit could push that government into collapse. 
We shall see.
In the meantime, if you happen to know any Englishmen interested in purchasing some gold that can't be seen or delivered, have them gimme a call.
Saturday, July 16, 2016

Weekly Commentary: Scary Time
Doug Noland
Just another week of the "new normal". Celebratory talk of "helicopter money," a melt-up in stocks, another terrorist attack in France and a coup attempt in Turkey. Let's start with Japan, with the preface that "Bubbles Go to Unimaginable Extremes - and Then Double!" and "Things Get Crazy Near the End - During 'Terminal Phase' Excesses."
July 12 - Bloomberg (Emi Nobuhiro and Yoshiaki Nohara): "Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke at a meeting in Tokyo he wants to speed up the nation's exit from deflation, underscoring his commitment to implementing fresh economic stimulus. 'We are only halfway to the exit from deflation,' Abe said at the start of the meeting... 'We want to be steadfast in accelerating our breakaway from deflation.' Abe's remarks at the meeting, also attended by the Ministry of Finance's top currency official Masatsugu Asakawa and adviser Koichi Hamada, came before he ordered Economy Minister Nobuteru Ishihara to compile stimulus measures this month."
As global markets celebrate Japan's reckless move to further ramp up fiscal and monetary stimulus, it's important to place things into a little perspective. Japan has been sporadically ramping up stimulus for more than 25 years. Federal government debt to GDP was about 65% back when the Japanese Bubble burst in 1990. Massive fiscal stimulus saw debt to GDP surge to 140% by the end of the nineties. By 2009, ongoing aggressive deficit spending pushed the ratio through 200%.  It's now almost reached 250%.  Meanwhile, expanding $1.0 TN annually, the Bank of Japan's (BOJ) balance sheet is rapidly approaching 100% of GDP. BOJ assets hovered between 30% and 40% of GDP in the ten-year period through 2012.
Prime Minister Abe must be an eternal optimist if he actually believes Japan is "halfway to the exit from deflation." The Japanese government this week sharply lowered their fiscal 2017 CPI forecast to 0.4%. After three years of (egregious) "shock and awe" fiscal and monetary stimulus, CPI is now running below the 2013 level. And in the face of massive stimulus, the Japanese economy is forecast to expand less than 1% this year. It's Scary Time.
Abe seeks "to be steadfast in accelerating our breakaway from deflation." In reality, Japan is trapped in destructive runaway monetary inflation. And that's the age old dilemma with inflation: once commenced it becomes almost impossible to rein in. Japan also highlights the problem of discretionary central banking: mistakes are invariably followed with only greater blunders. In Japan and throughout the world, there is today no turning back from the massive inflation in central bank Credit and government borrowings. It may be fallacious, ineffective and frighteningly self-destructive, but there's no dissuading global central bankers from even more destabilizing monetary inflation and monetization.
Global markets were giddy with anticipation of additional Japanese stimulus. Ben Bernanke traveling to meetings in Japan surely signaled "helicopter money" in the offing. These days I often feel as if I'm living in a different world. I see Dr. Bernanke as the champion of deeply flawed - and failing - inflationist doctrine. It's just hard to believe at this point that Japanese leadership doesn't recognize that Bernanke's experiment is failing and that they should seek guidance elsewhere. And, at this point, it's remarkable that markets can get excited about yet another round of Japanese stimulus. Squeeze the shorts...
I guess there's little mystery surrounding market complacency: QE liquefying securities markets indefinitely. To be sure, huge global fiscal deficits support corporate earnings and cash flow. Negative sovereign yields spur flows to risk assets, particularly corporate debt, while historically low corporate yields and ultra-loose Credit Availability stoke share repurchase financial engineering. Reduced debt service costs coupled with diminished share counts inflates earnings per share.
It's worth nothing that first quarter U.S. stock buybacks jumped to $166.3 billion (from Factset), up 15.1% from Q1 2016. This was the second largest quarter of buybacks ever and the strongest since record Q3 2007 ($178.5bn). Forty-one S&P500 companies had repurchases exceeding $1.0 billion during the period. Stock buybacks have provided key market support in a backdrop of mutual fund outflows. That companies have a penchant for purchasing their shares when the markets come under pressure provides a critical backstop, both from liquidity and market psychology standpoints.
Returning to unfolding Asian train wrecks, Japan and China are increasingly open adversaries yet they do share a common hope for inflating out of debt problems. From financial, economic and geopolitical points of view, it's alarming to watch both Chinese and Japanese finance in full self-destruction mode.
From Friday's Wall Street Journal headline: "Massive Stimulus Keeps China GDP Steady in Second Quarter." At 6.7% (beats estimates!), China's economy appears relatively stable. Industrial production increased 6.8%. Retail sales were up 10.6% from a year ago. Government fixed asset investment rose 23.5% during the first half, largely offsetting the ongoing drop in private investment.
Chinese finance is anything but stable, with its unwieldy Credit boom running hot in June. Beating forecasts by about 60%, Total Social Financing expanded $244 billion for the month. This was up from May's $102 billion to the strongest pace of system Credit expansion since a huge March ($370bn). A strong June put first-half Chinese Credit growth at about $1.5 TN, a sufficient sum to sustain the Bubble. Credit expanded at an almost 15% annualized rate during the first half, more than double the stated pace of economic expansion.
It's worth noting that June's big Credit push was primarily in bank lending. Bank loans surged $206 billion during the month, more than double May and almost equal to March's lending bonanza. A resurgent real estate Bubble now drives bank lending. According to Bloomberg, June new home (apartment) sales were up 22% y-o-y to $150 billion. And from the WSJ: "Property sales in 2016 have jumped by up to 50% year on year in top markets." "Terminal Phase"...
July 15 - Reuters: "Government spending in China jumped 19.9% in June from a year earlier, while revenue rose 1.7%, the Ministry of Finance said... Government spending in the first half of the year was up 15.1% from a year ago, while revenues rose 7.1%."
Both Chinese and Japanese policymakers had intended to rein in financial excess. The Chinese government moved to (too cautiously) reign in Credit growth. The Japanese government had pronounced their plan to impose fiscal restrain in what was sold (in 2012/13) as a temporary boost in deficit spending. Both have inflated major Bubbles and both have now clearly capitulated: massive and persistent monetary inflation as far as the eye can see, and global securities markets are overjoyed.
That Abe and Kuroda essentially see no constraints on deficits and monetization hammered the Japanese currency. For the week, the yen dropped 4.3%, the "Biggest Weekly Drop Since 1999". Stocks took flight. The Nikkei 225 index jumped 9.2%, amazing yet not even close to keeping up with the TOPIX Banks Index that surged a remarkable 17.7%.
Stimulus developments in Japan and a sinking yen provided a powerful boost to global "risk on." A worldwide short squeeze was especially conspicuous in Europe. Italian banks jumped 10.9%, while Europe's STOXX 600 bank index surged 6.7%. Major equities indexes rallied 4.5% in Germany, 4.3% in France and 4.2% in Spain and Italy.
Rallying global equities stoked an already powerful short squeeze in the U.S. market. The banks (BKX) surged 4.3%, the broker/dealers (XBD) 4.0% and the Transports 3.9%. The S&P500 gained 1.5% to a new record high.
The currency market remains acutely unstable. The British pound rallied 1.8% this week. Most EM currencies posted gains, except for the late Friday sell-off that left the Turkish lira down 4.3% for the week.
Watching an unfolding coup and attendant chaos live on television is a writing distraction, to say the least. Turkey, a country of 80 million and NATO ally, is at the epicenter of geopolitical dynamite. At this writing, the coup appears to have failed. Yet Friday's developments will surely exacerbate instability that has been festering badly for some time. The Erdogan government will turn only more autocratic, and a highly polarized society will become only more fractured. Coming just a few weeks after Brexit, mayhem in Turkey is yet another troubling reminder of the rapidity and extent of geopolitical deterioration on a global basis.
Turkey is also today emblematic of the wide chasm that has developed between inflating securities markets and deflating economic prospects. Turkish stocks have been among the top performing markets globally, ending the week with 15.5% y-t-d gains. Running large current account deficits (4.5% of GDP) and having accumulated significant international debt (much denominated in U.S. dollars), Turkey has been on my list of countries at high risk of financial and economic crisis. The country is now on the downside of what was a significant Credit boom, which surely helps explain at least of some of the increasingly problematic social tension and political instability.
Doug Noland is not a financial advisor nor is he providing investment services. This blog does not provide investment advice and Doug Noland's comments are an expression of opinion only and should not be construed in any manner whatsoever as recommendations to buy or sell a stock, option, future, bond, commodity or any other financial instrument at any time. The Credit Bubble Bulletins are copyrighted. Doug's writings can be reproduced and retransmitted so long as a link to his blog is provided.


Will the West Survive the Century?
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By Patrick J. Buchanan
"Nativism ... xenophobia or worse" is behind the triumph of Brexit and the support for Donald Trump, railed President Barack Obama in Ottawa.
Obama believes that resistance to transformational change in the character and identity of countries of the West, from immigration, can only be the product of sick minds or sick hearts.
According to The New York Times, he will spend the last months of his presidency battling "the nativism and nationalism" of Trump and "Britain's Brexiteers."
Prediction: Obama will fail. For rising ethnonationalism and militarization of frontiers is baked in the cake, if the West wishes to remain the West.
Behind that prediction lie the startling figures of the U.N.'s "World Population 2015" chart, which just arrived.
Consider but a few of those figures.
Between now and 2050, Europe will lose 32 million people. Not one European nation has a fertility rate - 2.1 children per woman - sufficient to keep it alive. A quarter of all Europeans are 60 or older.
The tribes that created the West are passing away.
Contrast Europe with Africa, just across the Mediterranean.
Between now and 2050, Africa will add 1.3 billion people, to reach 2.4 billion in 2050. Then its population will double again, to 4.4 billion, by 2100.
Only 5 percent of Africans are 60 or older, while 41 percent of Africans are 15 or younger.
Given the tyranny, destitution and disease that afflict Africa, what - other than barriers, border guards and warships - is there to stop tens of millions of young African men from crossing over in coming decades to fill the empty spaces left by dying Europeans?
The Arab-Muslim population of North Africa alone, from the western Sahara and Morocco to Egypt and Sudan, will add 130 million people in 35 years. Egypt will add 60 million, to reach a population of 151 million by 2050.
Yet Egypt will still have only the fifth-highest population of Muslims, behind Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh and India.
While impossible to find a Western country with a fertility rate that will prevent its native-born people from dying off, it is difficult to find a Muslim country that does not boast a rising or exploding population.
If the future belongs to the young, it belongs to Asians, Africans and Latin Americans, and it belongs to Islam.
Eastern Europe presents the grimmest picture in Europe.
Between now and 2050, Poland will lose 5 million people; Ukraine almost 10 million; and Russia 15 million. Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia will see one-sixth of their combined population disappear.
Such losses are comparable to those of World War II.
In percentage terms, Ukraine will suffer most. By midcentury, its population will have shrunk by 21 percent, to 35 million. Is this not a graver matter than whose flag flies over Crimea?
The bleakest prospects belong to Japan, home to some of the most capable, industrious and advanced people on earth.
Between now and 2050, Japan will lose 19 million people and see its population fall to 107 million. A third of the nation is already 60 or older. Only 1 in 7 Japanese are under 16.
Japanese are the oldest people on earth. In coming decades, a large slice of Japan's population will be working to support health care, pensions and welfare for the aged, infirm and dying.
And the United States?
With Mexico and Central America adding 56 million people in 35 years, either the U.S. secures its southern border or the 11-12 million immigrants here illegally will have millions of new compatriots.
America is already evolving into another country.
Though the U.S. is projected to grow by 67 million people in 35 years, this growth will be wholly among Hispanics, Asians and African-Americans. In each of the past four years, non-Hispanic white Americans have registered more deaths than births.
Between July 2014 and July 2015, the Asian-American population grew by 3.4 percent, and the Hispanic population grew 2.2 percent. The black population was up 1.3 percent. But the white population grew by only 0.1 percent.
White America has begun to die.
Can Obama really believe that amnesty for undocumented immigrants is still in the cards with a Republican Congress scorched by the forces behind Trump?
Can he believe that the right-wing parties proliferating across Europe, which see their nations imperiled by a rising tide of Muslim immigrants and refugees, will pack it in and support the EU's march to a transnational superstate that controls immigration and borders?
What has been tabled for discussion this year, in Europe and America, is the future of the West as an identifiable civilization to be cherished and defended by the peoples whose ancestors created it.
And Obama's reverence for Islam notwithstanding, the West remains the greatest civilization of them all.
Belatedly, Western Man appears to have decided to defend the shire, pull up the drawbridge, and man the parapets on the castle walls.
As for Trumpism and the Brexiteers, Mr. President, in the words of Jimmy Durante, "you ain't seen nothing yet."
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According to the US National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health, gallbladder disease is very common and also a very lucrative business ($5 billion) for modern medicine. Some of the reasons gallbladder disease is so common is obesity and the metabolic syndrome epidemic. The likelihood that adolescents develop gallbladder disease was once considered rare but is also on the rise. Gallbladder cancer is also more prevalent. Most patients will be referred to a gastroenterologist to be diagnosed with gallbladder disease requiring possible surgery. Let's take a look at this very common problem where 20% of the US population (1 million diagnosed cases annually) will have to seek medical intervention and how you can avoid this risk.
The countries reporting a rise in gallbladder disease are the US, Chile, Sweden, Germany and Austria. Here is a clue that it is really a lifestyle-type disease; in Arizona 70% of the Pima Indian women have gallstones by the age of 30. There is almost no gallbladder disease among Asians and there is zero gallbladder disease in East Africa among the Masai people.  More women than men develop gallbladder disease and the average age is 54.
We've talked about the gallbladder before and if there are symptoms that there is a problem they will progressively get worse regardless of eating. You do not want to let this go untreated and use common sense. In most cases when the gallbladder is producing symptoms it is congested with sludge and or stones, which can be flushed out if the stones are not too large. An ultrasound can help determine the size of the stones; preferably smaller than a garbanzo bean and if any are stuck in the bile duct. Here are the symptoms:
  • Pain in upper right side of abdomen (under ribs) - becomes persistent as condition worsens
  • Back pain between the shoulder blades
  • Pain under the right shoulder
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Abdominal bloating
  • Indigestion, gas, belching
  • Sweating & chills
  • Low-grade fever
  • Yellow color to skin and eyes
  • Clay-colored stool
In the 1990's the laparoscopic surgery was the new kind of surgery used to remove gallbladders. Approximately 600,000 gallbladder surgeries were being done each year and the laparoscopic technique was nicknamed by surgeons "Lap Choly", (short for laparoscopic cholecystectomy) cho-cole-le-sis-ectomy. Today surgeons consider the gallbladder as an "expendable organ" with 800,000 surgeries per year. According to Dr. Pat Bass III, the laparoscopic procedure increased the number of gallbladder removals and increased healthcare costs. According to, the costs of gallbladder surgery can reach $95,000. Just over twelve hours at the hospital to remove a gallbladder can cost more than $3,700 per hour. If you happen to live in Mesa, Arizona the gallbladder surgery there costs $94,897 with insurance or $14,223 if you are self-pay. Some hospitals offer 30-day-prompt-pay discounts of 40%. There's concern that the ease of the procedure has increased the number of unnecessary gall bladder surgeries. The procedure is not to be performed on patients with an inflamed gallbladder or if there is gallstones in the bile duct. In such cases, surgeons have to revert to the standard procedure of a cholecystectomy (cho-cole-le-sis-ectomy).  Patients being counseled by their doctors about gallbladder surgery are advised the bile will flow from the liver directly to the bile duct instead of the gallbladder once it is removed. The gallbladder would store bile in between meals but once it is removed that is not possible. Doctors tell patients this will have no effect on digestion. They are told the laparoscopic surgery to remove the organ offers few if any complications and patients are told they can resume their normal life routine within seven days after surgery. Gallbladder surgery is used to treat gallstones but even after the organ is removed patients can develop gallstones in the bile duct.
Patients are told that overall the surgery risk is low with gallbladder removal and they will get their lives back afterward. Doctors who are honest will let patients know that risks do exist with any surgery and gallbladder surgery is no different. At the University of Edinburgh, UK they studied the risks of this surgery and were published in the 2012 British Medical Journal. The UK has socialized healthcare and not all facilities are as well equipped for this surgery with about 60,000 done annually. They reported that the risk of complications is higher for the elderly as they normally have other health problems. The risk is higher with heart patients and for patients in general if the procedure is done at facilities which do not perform a high volume of gallbladder surgeries. The general risks for gallbladder surgery are:
  • Infection
  • Internal bleeding
  • Injury to the bile duct
  • Injury to small intestine
  • Anesthesia risks
  • Gallstones left in the abdominal cavity
  • Bile leak into abdominal cavity & rare injury to blood vessels leading to the heart and liver
  • Injury to liver by an unintended cut.
Most patients are not prepared for the life-changing affects of not having their gallbladder. Since there is no bladder to store the bile from the liver, the bile is constantly dripping into the intestines through the bile duct. The purpose of the bladder was to store enough bile to help digest fatty foods. Patients find that they can't eat fatty foods without digestive discomfort, diarrhea, bloating, nausea, indigestion and pain. Without adequate bile, you cannot digest fats and convert them into nutrients for the body. Also, antioxidants in vegetables are fat soluble. Without the gallbladder, you won't be able to absorb many important nutritional compounds and that includes trying to digest supplement pills.  I've often said the liver and gallbladder work in tandem and if the liver is not healthy it will encourage the likelihood of gallbladder stones and sludge. People these days like to post their experiences online and on a blog patients posted their experience of having gallbladder surgery and how their recovery was going. Many have remained in pain and unable to return to a normal life. Here is an example:
"I had my gallbladder removed 7 weeks ago. I had a laparoscopic removal but was in so much pain they have to give me an epidural. Since the operation I have been in pain, feel sick and can't eat. I experience excruciating pain up to an hour after eating food and if I lie down in the same position for too long and stand up it brings on the pain too. I have a bile taste in my mouth, excessive sweating and fatigue. I experience this several times a day. I'm now told I may need to have a stent put into my bile duct. Since the operation my life is a complete mess." Kay
Modern medicine reports that lifestyle is one reason the gallbladder malfunctions. Other factors the organ fails is due to prescribed medications. These medications increase the risk of liver and gallbladder disease, Crohn's disease and destruction of red blood cells (hemolysis). Here is a brief list:
Ceftiaxone (Rocephin) - antibiotic prescribed for pneumonia, ear infections, skin infections, UTI's, gonorrhea, pelvic inflammation, sepsis, bone or joint infections, abdominal infections and meningitis. Side effects warn of biliary sludge and gallstones among other things.
Octreotide - an injected hormone blocker prescribed for tumors and conditions of watery diarrhea. This drug can negatively affect the gallbladder, liver, stomach, cardiovascular and pulmonary.
Thiazide Diuretics - used for hypertension and congestive heart failure. Causes liver dysfunction and affects the gallbladder.
Parenteral Nutrition - nutrition administered to the body other than by the digestive system. Sometimes given by IV, increases risk of gallbladder sludge and stones by 100% if given for 6 weeks or longer.
A majority of people do not know that they can avoid many of the internal medicine diseases, such as gallbladder disease, with some routine organ cleansing. On a daily bases we need to be very selective on what we eat and drink. Foods are nutritional and herbs, which cleanse the system, are medicinal. Herbs are classified as foods by the FDA and in other countries they are called therapeutics. Medicinal herbs have the power to move bodily fluids, draw out impurities, soothe irritated tissues, remove debris quickly, stimulate nerve endings or calm them down, improve immune system function, speed-up tissue and organ regeneration, remove blockages, expel parasites, flush-out stones and more. Medicinal herbs help the body to restore balance. The key is to use your powerful herbs and not neglect them or you can run the risk of conditions becoming acute and requiring surgical intervention.  We want to be smart while using our powerful herbal tools and not re-congest the system with unhealthy lifestyles. We have enough toxins in the environment we have to cleanse away and no need to add to them. Think of cleansing as a maintenance plan to help you avoid toxic drugs, risky surgery and premature death.
There are several herbs that will help restore the liver and gallbladder to normal function and help flush out any stones. If you think your risk of cancer is a factor you can add dandelion root.
My favorite herbs are milk thistle for the liver and barberry bark for the gallbladder. These herbs will stop gallbladder spasms and reduce the pain. Pain will indicate the gallbladder is congested and needs flushing. If there are no severe gallbladder symptoms and no stones to flush out, then a step-down cleanse is what I would do. It is gentle and effective and helps to tone and regenerate the organs. Call the experts in organ cleansing, call Apothecary Herbs. They have a complete line of organ cleansing products sold individually or in kit packages. Ask about their Liver Detox Tea, Liver Gallbladder Tincture, Milk Thistle and Barberry bark tinctures. Remember, the liver and gallbladder send their impurities to the bowel and urinary tract. Be sure to ask about these cleanses to facilitate a free-flow of toxins out of the body and reduce reabsorbing them. Call Apothecary Herbs 866-229-3663, International 704-885-0277 , where you will discover your power and healthcare options just became endless.  Free product catalog and money saving coupons on their website.         

Herbalist Wendy Wilson on Herb Talk Live
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at Apothecary Herbs 
MORE HERB SECRETS IN THE POWER HERBS e-BOOK. By popular demand The Power Herbs e-book is available with symptom/herb reference guide, information on organ cleansing and how to make your own herbal tinctures plus a whole lot more. You must have email to order and receive the e-book a PDF version of The Power Herb book for just $14.99. At this time, we do not offer this title in hard copy. The book is now available in KINDLE and IPAD formats. Select the book you need on the drop down.
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The information contained herein is not designed to diagnosis, treat, prevent or cure disease. Seek medical advice from a lincensed medical physician (if you dare) before using any product or therapy. 
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