The Latest from John Batchelor and Steve Cohen


The weekly discussion continued last evening. I hope you've been following along as it is the only place in American media where a frank and honest debate takes place regarding the ongoing events in Ukraine.

Again, John Batchelor is a longtime reporter and media figure. His nightly radio program can be found here:

Stephen F. Cohen is an NYU & Princeton Prof. Emeritus. He is the author of "Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War" & "The Victims Return: Survivors of the Gulag after Stalin."

Please be sure to give this latest edition a thorough listen.



Jul 9, 2014 - 9:31pm


Doing the first thing is stupid, maybe that's why I like it!

Dagney Taggart
Jul 9, 2014 - 9:41pm

Katrina vanden Heuvel is a total Communist

Will some explain to me the fundamental difference between her and Neocons she has debated like Bill Kristol or Karl Rove? Both promote policies that steal from the productive and redistribute to destroyers.

Oh. And 2nd or something.

Mr. Fix
Jul 9, 2014 - 9:42pm

How many wars can Obama start simultaneously?

Yes, he's obviously trying to start a civil war in America, he's arming the crap out of the Muslim brotherhood,

 and is creating chaos on a global scale however, and wherever he can.

 Ukraine is such a tiny, tiny part of the picture.

That being said, it is also a vivid picture of what he intends to do to America, and all of Western civilization.


Dagney Taggart
Jul 9, 2014 - 9:47pm

He's not starting them, Fix

Obama's just a continuation of Bush and Neocon policies.

Thanks otherwise, Turd. In spite of Stephen's communist wife, I enjoy learning about the extent of the strategic importance of that region.

Jul 9, 2014 - 10:01pm

Harvey's Up! (TFMR)

Harvey's Up!

  • Mark O'Byrne: Gold bullion was 0.6% higher this morning as a drop in equities and the dollar coupled with increased tensions in the Middle East led to demand for gold as a hedging instrument and safe haven asset. Bullion for immediate delivery advanced as much as 0.6% to $1,327/oz, the highest price since July 3. Portugal and Italy led declines in European bonds and European stocks also dropped. Emerging-market shares fell from a 16-month high. Investors increased holdings in the largest exchange traded product. Tensions in the Middle East and Ukraine are ensuring demand for gold as insurance against geopolitical risk. Gold is now 10% higher this year, the best start to a year since 2010.
  • Harvey: Again last night, in the access market, the bankers tried to put pressure on gold and silver. However, that failed, and gold/silver advanced during the night only to be pounded back again once 3 AM EST arrived (first gold/silver fix). Once the Comex opened, gold shot up again by $8.00 to $1325 only to be shot down again once London was finally put to bed (after the second London gold fix). Silver was subdued for most of the day. At 2:00 pm we received the beige book report and basically it stated that the Fed was going to end tapering but continue with its dovish policy. Gold shot up immediately to $1332 and silver went to 21.22 only to be brought back to the access closing I highlighted. Gold equity shares had a stellar day.
  • Harvey on the Middle East: Fighting intensifies in Israel and they fight the Hamas in the Gaza strip by sea and by land. Today long range missiles landed in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem as well as Hadera and in an area close to Haifa. The Israels answered these rocket volleys with bombing of their own on Gaza. Also 4 Hamas frogman were killed last night trying to enter Israel at its port of Ashkelon. In late news, two other Hamas frogman tried to enter Israel and again they were thwarted and killed. Today, rockets were fired very close to Dimona where all their nuclear arsenal is stored. The iron shield knocked rockets out of the sky as they were descending on Dimona. No doubt that Israel will probably enter Gaza on the ground and try and rout out all of the Hamas militants. No country can withstand constant rockets raining in on them.
  • Gene Arensberg: Even with their recent big increase in short positions in gold futures, the Got Gold Report's Gene Arensberg writes tonight, the major commercial traders remain well below what used to be their normal short positioning. So Arensberg wonders if a change in the gold market is underway. It will be interesting to see if gold reacts to the upside despite the large net long additions. Won’t it? Notice the apparent urgency of the commercial traders to clear their previously large gross shorts (from an extremely high 73,741 June 10 with $1259 gold to a much, much lower 23,273 July 1 with $1326 gold) - something we might expect at a major turning point. What we may be seeing, and the jury is still out of course, could be the COT "returning to a more normal state of hedging and long positioning" by the major players.
  • Neil Hume and Xan Rice: A joint proposal by Thomson Reuters, the data and news service, and exchange operator CME Group has emerged as the frontrunner to provide a new global silver price benchmark when the 117-year old London silver fix is disbanded in August. However, it faces a last-minute challenge from the London Metal Exchange that has joined forces with Autilla, a technology provider, to table a revised bid. The move has delayed the announcement of a new method for providing a daily reference price for silver. The London Bullion Market Association, the industry body co-ordinating the search for a new transparent electronic mechanism, was set to announce the winner of the hotly contested process earlier this week. While the LME's new proposal will be given a hearing because it comes from a "serious candidate," people familiar with the situation said it was unlikely to find favour with industry participants. "This is complete about-turn by the LME and I would say it's too late".
  • Chris Powell: Rick Rule explains why he still has great faith in a commodities boom. "Four billion people worldwide are becoming fairly rapidly more rich, albeit from a low basis," Rule says. "They aspire to the same standard of living you and I have, and that's a material standard of living. This idea that the secular bull market in raw materials has somehow run its course is preposterous because it ignores mathematics and demographics, and you have to travel to see that."
  • Bill Holter (Miles Franklin): Last week the U.S. fined BNP Paribas for dealing through their U.S. entities with the sanctioned countries of Iran and Sudan. Why exactly are we doing this? As I see this, there is no upside to it. The German banks will simply re route around using dollars between clients and Iranian or Sudanese businesses. By pushing them harder, maybe they really did want their gold back? Maybe they will say something about it publicly? Can you imagine if they did? What would gold's price do if Germany made a public statement that they want their gold back and they want it ALL (not just 20% of it) within 30 days? $2,000 overnight? $3,000? No matter how you look at this, we are pushing Germany directly into Mr. Putin's open arms and into the SinoRussian family. We are so dumb that we in essence are telling them to abandon the dollar.
  • Zero Hedge: Brussels, we have a problem. As we warned 6 weeks ago ,Espirito Santo International SA - is in a "serious financial condition" according to a central bank driven external audit by KPMG identified "irregularities in its accounts." Sure enough, the 'ponzi-like' maneuvers have left the bank unable to pay its bonds as Bloomberg reports bonds plunged to record lows after a parent company delayed payments on short-term notes. More importantly, given the divisively dependent nature of the domestic sovereign bond market (and hence the health of the EU) and its banking system, it is noteworthy that Portuguese bond risk has surged to 4 month highs with the biggest 2-day spike in a year. As one analyst noted, “The bigger question is whether the government will have to get involved,” leaving the EU taxpayer on the hook once again (for fear of M.A.D. threats) as most critically, it "will have to step in to prevent systemic repercussions?"

All this and more on...

The Harvey Report! smiley


Jul 9, 2014 - 10:39pm


courtesy of

I love the advert selling a product to PUT ON weight.................bit different from nowadays wouldn't you say.........entrepreneurs...........;)

Jul 9, 2014 - 11:03pm

between a rock and a hard place

An excellent listen! According to Steve Cohen, Putin is evidently now between a rock and a hard place: "(Putin) is the man upon whom history now hinges."

Mr. Fix
Jul 9, 2014 - 11:26pm

And a report on some of those “other wars”.

​Besides being well-informed, she's really easy on the eyes.

Jul 10, 2014 - 12:34am

Poverty Matters for

Poverty Matters for Capitalists

John Mauldin | Jul 09, 2014

Having taken Thomas Piketty to the cleaners a few weeks back (see “Gave & Gave … and Hay”), Charles Gave now redresses the balance with regard to the issue of economic inequality in today’sOutside the Box. He makes a forceful case that “poverty matters for capitalists”:

Every US recession that I can recall was preceded by a fall in long rates, and I doubt the next will be much different. As such, do not expect the next US downturn to arise from the Federal Reserve pushing rates higher, an overvalued dollar or even mal-investments. Expect it to result from a decline in the income of the working poor. Early warning signs are likely to show up in the shopping aisles of stores such as Walmart, average driving miles, and the price of houses at the cheaper end of the market. I suspect the lesson that will eventually be learnt is that in a modern industrialized economy there are few worse things a central bank can do than deliberately attack the spending power of the poor.

Charles is clearly tying the economic struggle of the working poor to Federal Reserve policy. As he says, “negative real rates amounts to the Fed imposing a regressive tax on the poor although it lacks the authority to collect taxes.”

Income decline among the least wealthy in US society is not just an economic issue, he asserts:

At a moral level, I would also question the validity of a system that no longer allows its weakest members to get by. This is why I contend that the post-2010 policy of ZIRP has had little to do with protecting the health of the capitalist system, but rather has been a ruse to protect the rich. The policy is not only failing to deliver growth, it is also immoral.

And that income decline has been drastic since 2000, and particularly since 2010. Charles has created what he calls a “Walmart CPI,” which tracks the prices of rent, food, and energy (the things the poor must spend nearly all their income on); and he uses it to demonstrate the effects of negative real rates on the poor. Since 2000 there has been more than a 15% increase in the ratio of the Walmart CPI to standard US CPI.

We can expect this deadly combination of rising prices for necessities and declining incomes to affect the stock market, too, says Charles:

Pretty much every equity bear market in the US over the last 30 years has occurred against the backdrop of the working poor experiencing a decline in living standards (the one exception was 1987 when the market was reacting to over valuation).

Strong stuff. But that’s Charles: never afraid to tell it like he sees it.

I am preparing to leave for Nantucket in a few hours, and I’m looking forward to the trip. I’ve never been there; and not only are my hosts providing very pleasant accommodations along the waterfront, they have also conveniently arranged for the weather to be nearly perfect. I have an iPad full of books that are all begging to be read, and of course a weekly letter will have to be teased out of my computer sometime in the next few days.

Wrapping up, two significant items hit my inbox this morning, including one from Andrew McCreath, who is a host for BNN in Canada. He uses data from my friend Bill Dunkelberg, Chief Economist of the National Federation of Independent Business (who will be visiting me in a few weeks here in Dallas), showing the correlation between certain aspects of the NFIB survey and wages. It will be good news for workers if wage hikes are in the offing, but that means that margins in businesses, which are sky-high right now, will come under pressure. This also plays well into Rosie’s (David Rosenberg’s) theme that we are going to see wage inflation soon, which he visualizes in interestingsa charts. Will this trend finally lead to some talk of interest rate increases? And yet I am told that Ben Bernanke, in his $250,000 speeches, is saying that we will not see much higher rates in his LIFETIME.

Maybe Ben (who is still young enough that “his lifetime” means a VERY long time) was reading David Kotok’s latest note this morning, as David worries a few trout in Wyoming:

Gasoline prices have reached levels that (1) will be sustained for a while in all likelihood and (2) that are, in real terms, equivalent to levels that previously led to economic slowdowns in the US. This development prompted our exit from [an overweight position in the Energy] sector.

In a compelling study, Ned Davis Research examined the real price of gasoline, adjusted for the inflation rate, and its economic impacts. The inflation-adjusted price of gasoline today has reached levels that have historically throttled growth. Furthermore, the Ned Davis study finds that a higher price for gasoline would be the equivalent of a major shock. The research suggests that under either circumstance – current gas prices or prices that surge even higher – the weight on the economy from that adjustment is onerous.

And I just can’t close without this brief, ironic comment. Readers may know that I have neighbors who question my Texas ancestry (which goes back to the Republic, thank you) because I don’t own any guns. I am perfectly content for my friends to have lots of them and feel gun ownership is one of those sacred rights, but I have just never been motivated to build a bunker with an arms locker, or even possess a small pistol. For whatever reason, I feel perfectly safe without one.

With that admission (which some will applaud and others see as a glaring lapse of character), I note that over the 4th of July weekend, there were 82 people shot, 14 fatally, in Chicago.

I read elsewhere that Houston had six shot and two dead over that same period. Chicago, the third-largest city in the US, has no places where you can legally buy a gun. Houston, the fourth-largest US city, has over 500 (including Walmarts, etc., which are not listed as gun stores per se but have rather extensive offerings). Not sure what that means, but you have to wonder.

Have a great week. And enjoy your summer! I know most farmers are, as the weather is perfect for growing all sorts of crops, which look to produce record yields in the US this year.

Your going to be reading about GDP this week analyst,

John Mauldin, Editor
Outside the Box

Gold Dog
Jul 10, 2014 - 12:40am


I know I owe some of you some ng with my new band, Ill circle worki


Jul 10, 2014 - 12:43am

Excellent Pod


Everyday brings a months worth of world events.

Thanks TF.

Jul 10, 2014 - 1:08am

The globalists have been using the divide and concuer to great

effect for centuries. Why?

Because people are gullible. So gullible they ignore reality to listen to what makes them feel good. 

Propaganda doesn't work when people look at reality. Thanks Turd, I'm forcing myself to listen to this in detail. I haven't subscribed to cable for 7 years and it's absolutely scarey to listen to the detail this interview goes to paint a picture.

Edit: Actually, I had to turn it off at the 17 minute mark. Labels and absolutes were just too much.

Jul 10, 2014 - 1:39am

Obama policies during...

his first administration were textbook Bush (47) protocols. He (Obama) even admitted it on the news, with the bewilderment of how can the Republicans hate what he was doing since ALL his policies were taken from the BUSH gangster cabal. Obama even met with the Father and son during his 1st term to discuss...redacted.

Thanks Dagney for putting that out there, often we can forget the tidbits of history with so much going on in an outside of our own lives. 

Jul 10, 2014 - 1:41am

Don't reglect fat!!! Thanks Hammer!

Especially for you dumdums!

Your brain is the fattest organ in your body and may consist of at least 60 percent fat. 

We've learned in recent years that fatty acids are among the most crucial molecules that determine your brain's integrity and ability to perform. Essential fatty acids (EFAs) are required for maintenance of optimal health but they can not be synthesized by the body and must be obtained from dietary sources.

Clinical observation studies has related imbalance dietary intake of fatty acids to impaired brain performance and diseases. Most of the brain growth is completed by 5-6 years of age.

The EFAs, particularly the omega-3 fatty acids, are important for brain development during both the fetal and postnatal period. Dietary decosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is needed for the optimum functional maturation of the retina and visual cortex, with visual acuity and mental development seemingly improved by extra DHA. Beyond their important role in building the brain structure, EFAs, as messengers, are involved in the synthesis and functions of brain neurotransmitters, and in the molecules of the immune system. Neuronal membranes contain phospholipid pools that are the reservoirs for the synthesis of specific lipid messengers on neuronal stimulation or injury. These messengers in turn participate in signaling cascades that can either promote neuronal injury or neuroprotection.

Jul 10, 2014 - 3:44am

Cohen has been watching

Cohen has been watching Russian TV too much. And Cohen is a Cohen. As if Russia is not anti-semitic. Most anti-semitic country in the Christian world both historically and today.

The manipulation with fascism labeling and over blowing this factor in Ukraine is the simplest most effective propaganda form Russia has been using for ages against all Western former Soviet Union republics ; we have been called fascists during soviet times and are called so now; so are Ukrainians as they somehow do not want to take Russians as bosses. Who would? After experiencing it first hand? I invite everyone first live under Russians then comment on the blessings of being part of their civilization. 

I think Cohen is on Putin's payroll. 

On other hand USA is clearly stoking up tension in Ukraine since famous Nuland's "fuck EU" and in my world picture, they are pushing Russia into China's hands. That has been agreed in division of monetary influence spheres that Russia will belong to Chinese reserve currency Empire. But they need to be pushed a bit as well as they still have dreams of own glory. And they must get face saving things like Crimea that was transferred with no problems. Western opposition to this was token, another face saving action. PR.

Only under control of Chinese money supply machine. Roths have agreed with Rocks they are coming back. David Rockefeller son died in plane crash next day ( June 13th, 2014) after Stanley Fisher was confirmed vice chair of FED by senate. Signature in blood by David Rockefeller. Son was leaving dad's birthday party in his own plane. Coincidence, of course. Roth's are threatening to destroy USD otherwise by controlling gold supply/demand. 

Another Roth man in Rocks institution. Most significant of course was Jacob Rothschild in the board of directors Rockefeller family trust in 2012 after the first signs of truce appeared after 2011 debt ceiling standoff and gold price spike which both ended at roughly same time ( August September 2011) . Rocks stepped back, also geopolitically. This shows who is regaining power who is losing and why the USA needs to share monetary power at all. To save banker rule over the world spheres of influence have to be divided after almost 100 years of Rocks monopoly. 

Jul 10, 2014 - 4:19am

(No subject)

Reverse Repo in 60 seconds
Jul 10, 2014 - 4:20am

Oh and surf's up Saffer style

Oh and

surf's up Saffer style

ASP 2014 J-Bay Open English Day 1
Jul 10, 2014 - 4:43am

UK trade numbers out and

UK trade numbers out and worse than expected (NB different from UK numbers released earlier)

UK trade gap widens in May on higher aircraft imports

Thu, 10th Jul 2014 09:30

LONDON, July 10 (Reuters) - Britain's goods trade deficit widened in May, pushed up by imports of aircraft, official data showed on Thursday.

The Office for National Statistics said the goods trade deficit grew to just over 9.2 billion pounds from 8.8 billion pounds in April.

Economists in a Reuters poll had forecast a gap of 8.75 billion pounds.

Spartacus Rex
Jul 10, 2014 - 4:48am
Spartacus Rex
Jul 10, 2014 - 5:32am

Jul 10, 2014 - 9:24am

Chinese at it again.  This

Chinese at it again. This time hacked into Homeland Security files. That's not the best part of the story.

The Justice Department has issued indictments for 5 top Chinese Military officials for previous hacking. I say those Chinese guys just give themselves up and get on the next American Airlines flight and surrender themselves at Dulles National Airport. So freakin' stupid.

I wonder how many foreign countries passed indictments on Obama and the CIA for all their spying. Tony Blair and George Bush still haven't surrendered after being indicted at the Malaysia War Trials over Iraq. But they did blow a plane out of the sky as retribution. (so some say).

All international horse manure. They all need to get indicted for crimes against the people

Jul 10, 2014 - 11:13am

Janda's guest, Alex Alexiev,

Janda's guest, Alex Alexiev, has another view of Putin and Ukraine.

Jul 10, 2014 - 11:44am

Thanks for posting that

This stuff needs to be debated and understood by as many as possible. All sides need to be considered.

Bongo Jim
Jul 10, 2014 - 12:03pm


Jokes and surf pics are why I show up here.

Jul 10, 2014 - 12:16pm

You want jokes. Okay

A guy enters a Roman Catholic Church confessional booth in Washington, D.C . He tells the Priest, "Bless me, Father, for I have sinned.

Last night, I beat the hell out of an Obama supporter."
The Priest responds,

"My son, I'm here to forgive your sins,
not to discuss your community service."

Jul 10, 2014 - 12:23pm

Thought for the day . . . er, lifetime . . .

"The most dangerous man, to any government, is the man who is able to think things out for himself... Almost inevitably, he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, and intolerable."
- H.L. Mencken

(from 321gold site)

Jul 10, 2014 - 12:28pm
ivars DragonFly
Jul 10, 2014 - 12:44pm

Well this guy gets what

Well this guy gets what happens in Ukraine and what is Putin's "ethnicity" based geopolitics and how Russian kick back economy works. Well Ukrainian was and will be the same. 

Thanks for posting. 

I have been talking with Ukrainian colleague from Kiev and he said that what Russia is doing now against Ukraine is really consolidating Ukrainian nation along ethnicity lines , kind of forming Ukrainian nation which never really happened during Soviet times or earlier nor after 1990. Now its happening, as a reaction against Russian actions. Ukrainians are pretty happy about that in fact. 

Again I do not deny USA geopolitical games , banker needs to expand debt empire etc, but .. one does not have to believe Russian propaganda to have a clear picture what is going on. 

Jul 10, 2014 - 1:02pm

Ucranked stirred up to kill each other and take sides

for better of for worse. Killing generally leads to the worst but here in Amerika the banksters can't stand the intensifying heat as the economies of the world; including the US give up the ghost; last gasp of debt wealth: Banker Suicides Return: JPMorgan Executive "Blasts Wife, Kills Self" With Shotgun

Timmmmber as the dead head feds or masters of disaster actually believe in a controlled collapse. Released mania from financial straight jackets will certainly induce major confidence coast to roast. LOL The more I read the more I just have to set aside the inevitable and know we the people run out of adult diapers because of the vanity and foolishness of such absurdities as controlled collapse. Maybe the demolition of 9/11/01 has placed some starch in the insane back bones of floundering fish, EEE entirely out of water and their comfort zone. One thing about controlling humans is you don't for long. Once the herd breaks out of the controls you may as well stand in front of the flooding mighty Mississippi and hold it back with bagged sand. It's all about to break and the flood of human reaction in financial chaos will rip the EEE a new one. 

Jul 10, 2014 - 1:06pm

I try to stay in the Jim Rickards frame of mind these days

While I certainly have my own opinions about who is more "right" or "wrong" in disputes like the one in Ukraine (or any other "hot topic"), I also try to keep my other eye fixed on trying to figure out whats actually going to happen rather than wedding myself to a view about what "should" happen and then angrily insisting it must. Along the way, my opinions about the "right" and "wrong" often change too since the process keeps me open-minded.

So even if this radio show is a couple of communists who's wet dream is a new USSR, they nevertheless are providing a lot of information to support the view that Russia continues to "win" this thing in terms of long term strategic thinking on multiple fronts and I think that is what we should be concerned about. 

I have seen more than a few comment sections on MSM type sites that are nearly unanimous in the view that Putin made a huge mistake "stepping" to the US in Ukraine and that we have "put in his place" now, so much so that he must resort to pathetic stunts like holding up production of the latest series of House Of Cards. Almost everyone believes Putin is a thoroughly neutered yapping little dog wishing he had any sort of say in what goes on.

Putin strikes me as a dangerous and bad guy, but people in the west have no concept of how powerful he is and of how weak we are, except in a narrow "destroy the entire earth with nukes" sense. I fear that not only will Germany openly be taking Russias side very soon, but that the people around me will have no idea what that means or that it even happened.

Not good.

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