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The shocking way the U.S. is worse off than Russia

From Karen Kwiatkowski at

I am not a big fan of George Friedman’s pseudo-cynical prognostications, preferring to take my cynicism straight without all the patriotic rah.

However, Stratfor’s latest mailing “Can Putin Survive?” mentioned that Russian regulatory burdens on the economy are startling, and led me to this article showing that government inspections cost the economy $35 billion a year! 1.8% of the Russian GDP!

Curious, I looked at the Ten Thousand Commandments [annual report on federal regulations] to verify that… costs for Americans to comply with our own regulatory state is a mere $1.86 trillion (more than 10% of the economy).

Putin is the head of the oligarchs in a country with little government debt, and his flamboyance, his background in Soviet intelligence, and his physical fearlessness have made him particularly despised/feared by the other socialist oligarch-led governments around the world, especially the highly leveraged ones.

Stratfor’s similarly titled and structured article “Can Obama Survive?” seems to be missing, but I’m sure it will be out soon…

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Fed up with traffic and bad drivers? Read this…

From Eric Peters at Eric Peters Autos:

Don’t be that guy…

It’s actually pretty easy.

The Don’t Do’s:

  • Don’t pull out in front of people – and then fail to accelerate quickly enough such that the driver you pulled out in front of is forced to brake hard or swerve to avoid rear-ending you. If your car’s not quick enough do this – or you’re too scared to do this – wait until there’s space (and time) enough for you to merge without endangering and annoying everyone else. Or get a quicker car. Or take some driving lessons.
  • Don’t come to a complete stop at stop signs at the top of hills when driving in a snowstorm. You’ll get stuck – and then everyone else behind you trying to make it up the hill will get stuck, too. Keep moving. If you’re afraid to – or unable to – stay home when it snows.
  • Don’t just turn on your turn signal and expect other drivers to make room. Accelerate to match the speed of traffic, then signal, then merge.
  • Don’t tailgate. Ever, for any reason. It’s always obnoxious, never safe – and only makes a bad situation (such as a slow poke in front of you) worse. Give them a wide berth, then pass them at the first opportunity.
  • Don’t wait like a lobotomized zombie at red lights that never change. If no cops or cameras are watching, ignore the light – after making sure the way is clear.

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POLL-Gold price to roll back H1 gains, average below $1300/oz in 2014

* Prices to average $1,277/oz in 2014, $1,250/oz next year

* Silver seen averaging $20.20/oz this year, $20.00/oz in

By Jan Harvey

LONDON, July 22 (Reuters) – Gold will drift lower in the
second half of 2014, leading to a second yearly drop in the
average price after a dizzying decade-long rally, as U.S.
monetary policy returns to normal and Asian demand is weak,
analysts forecast in a Reuters poll.

The survey of 31 analysts and traders this month returned an
average forecast for the third quarter at $1,270 an ounce, down
from the average first-half price of $1,290 an ounce. In
the last three months of the year, it is seen averaging $1,255.

For the full year, respondents returned an average forecast
of $1,277 an ounce, little changed from a forecast in a similar
poll conducted in early April.

That will mark a second year in which gold’s average price
has fallen, following a 15.5 percent retreat in 2013, the first
drop in more than a decade. No recovery is seen in 2015, when
gold is expected to edge a touch lower to $1,250 an ounce.

The metal rose around 10 percent in the first half,
rebalancing after a slide to three-year lows last year. With the
impact of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s tapering of its
extraordinary stimulus measures now broadly priced in, prices
are expected to hold within narrow ranges for the remainder of
the year.

“We are mildly bullish for gold in general this year, but we
feel that many of the

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Top Ranked Gold And Silver Miners To Own Today

Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) and Pan American Silver (NASDAQ:PAAS) have reentered the Victory Formation system’s Top 10 list this past week. Both continue to score as the best performing and uniquely situated fundamental value stories in the precious metals mining sector, just as they have since gold and silver prices rebounded from multi-year lows in December 2013. Goldcorp scored as high as #4 on my overall stock market list in March, and Pan American was ranked as high as #1 in February, before both fell in price between April-June.

You can read my Seeking Alpha article posted in April explaining the growing odds of a gold and silver bottom in 2013-14 here. It is full of tidbits, data points, and logic you cannot find anywhere else. An honest evaluation of gold’s underlying long-term worth to investors, measured against 50 years of relative valuations and dollar based trading, is hard to find. Wall Streeters would prefer you NOT read this post, as gold’s long-term performance has been much better than explained by the mainstream media the last several decades.


Goldcorp is likely the best “risk-adjusted” miner choice for investors wanting leveraged precious metals upside for years into the future, without (1) the hassle from expirations of futures and options on the metals directly, (2) oversized investment capital risks created from a poor company balance sheet, high mining costs, declining reserves in the ground, weak managers, or (3) needless production profile risks caused by

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Heads up… The shale fracking “backlash” just popped up in an unexpected place

From Pierce Points: 

A big part of investing success is seeing critical events emerging. The kind of “dark horses” that can change a sector or an industry – sending things in a completely unexpected direction.

We’re seeing such happenings right now in the U.S. unconventional oil and gas sector.

Namely, a grassroots backlash against fracking. The drilling technique that’s been largely responsible for the shale production boom the last few years.

Last week, Pennsylvania courts once again upheld the right of individual municipalities to set their own fracking rules. Meaning cities and towns are now able to impose fracking bans – regardless of laws set by the pro-shale state government.

And last week we also saw the anti-fracking movement jump to a new and unexpected place. Texas – the very place where modern shale drilling was born.

The municipality here is Denton – a town in northern Texas. Where the local city council was presented with 2,000 signatures on a proposal to ban fracking within city limits.

After reviewing the document, council members had two choices: approve it outright, or send it to a vote amongst the town’s 120,000 residents.

The city opted for the latter. Meaning that the fate of fracking here now comes down to a ballot… And it looks as if the vote could be close.

A meeting held at Denton city hall on the petition reportedly attracted as many as 600 residents. With the city’s mayor calling the turnout “the largest I’ve ever seen in all my time at

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You may not believe what the U.S. gov’t is saying about the Malaysian Airlines disaster now

From Washington’s Blog:

Instead of providing evidence for Russian guilt in the plane shootdown, U.S. says: Just TRUST us… because those Iraq War lies are ancient history…

In the following 5-minute clip from a question and answer session between State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf and the American press, the U.S. State Department more or less says:

We’re the good guys who tell the truth, and Russians are liars. 

Forget Iraq… that’s ancient history.

So just trust us.

As Zero Hedge pointed out days ago, it doesn’t matter what really happened … the U.S. has announced that Russia did it.

Forget fiat money… this is fiat intelligence.

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MCX gold, silver prices may trade sideways: Angel

Angel Commodities’ report on bullion

Spot gold prices gained around 0.1 percent and rose above $1,300 an ounce on Monday as U.S. equities slipped and political tensions intensified after the shooting down of a passenger plane in eastern Ukraine last week and incessant fighting in Gaza.

Bullion rebounded after last week’s two-percent drop, as investors took profits after Thursday’s strong rally when a Malaysian airliner over Ukraine was shot down and Israel launched a massive ground offensive into Gaza against Hamas militants.

In the Indian markets, gold prices rose by around 0.3 percent in the last session despite Rupee appreciation.

Silver prices in the international markets traded higher taking cues from strength in gold prices. Also, gains in the base metals apace added an upside to the white metal prices.

On the MCX, silver prices gained 0.5 percent taking cues from strong international markets and closed at Rs.45174/kg.

On an intraday basis, we expect gold and silver prices to trade sideways today owing to outlook for higher U.S. borrowing costs amid optimism in the economy which will act as a negative factor for prices.

While on the other hand, safe haven demand fueled by tension in Ukraine and Gaza will support gains.

On the MCX, gold and silver prices are expected to trade sideways taking cues from international markets.

For all commodities report, click here

Disclaimer: The views and investment tips expressed by investment experts/broking houses/rating agencies on are their own, and not

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If you’re listening to the mainstream news, you could be missing a huge investment opportunity

From Frank Curzio, editor, Small Stock Specialist:

Struggling to catch my breath, I turned to my brother and said, “Run!”

We had just been doused with tear gas.

Two weeks ago, my brother and I flew to Brazil to see a quarterfinal game of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Over 80,000 people filled the stadium in Brasilia (the capital city) to watch Argentina play Belgium.

I’ve been to hundreds of sporting events, but this one was different. Even though Belgium was playing, Brazil and Argentina fans made up roughly 90% of the crowd. The two countries have a long-standing rivalry. And the fans hate each other…

After the game ended, my brother and I found ourselves caught in the middle of thousands of screaming fans. It was fun at first, but the environment quickly became hostile.

People cursed at each other. Bottles and debris flew through the air. A plastic souvenir cup slammed into my brother’s back. And then the police shot tear gas right next to us. I couldn’t breathe. Tears swelled in my eyes. We had no choice but to run…

From this story, you might be tempted to believe the mainstream news that Brazil is a dangerous place… There have been rampant protests… Its economy is struggling… The country spent too much money on the World Cup building new stadiums… And it is spending too much money to host the Summer Olympics in 2016.

But these stories couldn’t be further from the truth…

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