I am very much for free trade and the exchange of goods and services between states. It helps to ensure peace between peoples and often brings higher quality and lower cost products to market, thereby raising the quality of life for the average person. But it’s hard to see what advantage opening things up with Cuba gives us right now. We certainly shouldn’t be legitimizing the regime. At the very least we should have waited until Castro died.
Also why are we saving Cuba’s lunch? Venezuela is dying thanks to the bottom falling out of oil prices. Venezuela finances much of the Cuban economy. Now would be a time where we should be dictating very strident terms to the island nation. Cuba is running out of money. And we are about to give these guys, and they are communists, a new infusion? It doesn’t make much sense to me.
Don’t get me wrong, though I am for free trade I am not for intervening in the affairs of other nations, which we did quite a lot in Cuba. But this regime should be hung out to dry, not rewarded.
This is the 3rd and probably last time we’ll give a shout out to Senator Warren, who as we always have to note is wrong on many many things. But on the embedded “pre-bailout” in the Cromnibus bill she is absolutely right. We should not be on the hook for big bank derivatives which go south. And we are talking about trillions in derivatives. (For those who are unclear as to what derivatives are here is a good explanation.)
In a recent post we highlighted a piece by Charles Hugh Smith where he asserted that. “The 35% drop in the price of oil is the first domino.” He warned that the world was floating on a sea of fossil fuel derivatives that were about to go bad.
Funny that the pre-bailout bit got put into the Cromnibus at the last second. It reminds me of when the banks got the bankruptcy laws more to their liking right before the Great Recession started. Let’s hope the pre-bailout isn’t a direct countermeasure to immediate developments in the world economy. That would be bad news.
In the wake of the Cromnibus debacle, where Republican congressional leadership pretty much completely turned their backs on “wave voters” for short term gain, (and Democratic leaders did the same) multiple readers at ACC have asked, “Well now what?”
By Ron Paul
The political class breathed a sigh of relief Saturday when the US Senate averted a government shutdown by passing the $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill. This year’s omnibus resembles omnibuses of Christmas past in that it was drafted in secret, was full of special interest deals and disguised spending increases, and was voted on before most members could read it.
The debate over the omnibus may have made for entertaining political theater, but the outcome was never in doubt. Most House and Senate members are so terrified of another government shutdown that they would rather vote for a 1,774-page bill they have not read than risk even a one or two-day government shutdown.
Those who voted for the omnibus to avoid a shutdown fail to grasp that the consequences of blindly expanding government are far worse than the consequences of a temporary government shutdown. A short or even long-term government shutdown is a small price to pay to avoid an economic calamity caused by Congress’ failure to reduce spending and debt.
The assumption is that many illegal immigrants, one way or another will eventually vote. The assumption is also that since a great number of immigrants streaming into the US from Latin America are both uneducated and familiar with political systems based on patronage that these people will necessarily vote for Democrats. That they will fall easily into the urban political machines and become part of the “masses” (I hate that term) which feed the system.
My bet is that it doesn’t quite work out that way. I think there are many more factors in the “emerging Hispanic vote” than are widely understood. We’ll see how it shakes out soon enough.
So at one point on Thursday, according to the ranking member on the House Financial Services Committee Maxine Waters, Barack Obama and JPMorgan’s CEO were on the phone with congresspeople whipping votes. The President and the chief of America’s largest bank were calling members of Congress making deals.
Oh. Obamacare. Is there nothing you can’t mess up? (Worse.)
David Stockman asks this question, though he knows the answer.
That constellation of trillions of dollars of credit derivatives which floats around the globe? The one generated by the big banks? Looks like we’re now the ones responsible for them when they come crashing through the atmosphere.
The below commentary and letter were just posted to Representative Justin Amash’s Facebook page. I post here for your review.
When I learned that the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2015 was being rushed to the floor for a vote—with little debate and only a voice vote expected (i.e., simply declared “passed” with almost nobody in the room)—I asked my legislative staff to quickly review the bill for unusual language. What they discovered is one of the most egregious sections of law I’ve encountered during my time as a representative: It grants the executive branch virtually unlimited access to the communications of every American.