Sunday, 31 October 2010

US midterm elections: Barack Obama's world turned upside down as Democrats face electoral disaster

" .....Obama's high-minded appeals for national unity are no more. His electoral strategy is one of desperate damage limitation. Most pollsters expect Democrats to lose more than 50 seats and control of the House of Representatives.

They will probably keep control of the Senate but at least six seats look lost. Obama's response has been to "slice and dice" the electorate in the way he condemned. He endured the indignity of being called "dude" on Jon Stewart's Comedy Central show as the price for enticing young voters. "

Barack loses his cool: Angry Obama yells BACK at hecklers... as new poll shows his own party isn't sure he should be President in 2012

Daily Mail
"But the unexpected loss of control was in stark contrast to the power he held over similar audiences during his 2008 presidential campaign. With the November 2 mid-term elections just days away, Mr Obama's Democratic party is facing heavy losses.The President himself is dealing with a devastating loss in popularity.Democratic voters are closely divided over whether he should be challenged within the party for a second term in 2012, an Associated Press-Knowledge Networks Poll finds.That glum assessment carries over into the nation at large, which is similarly divided over whether Mr Obama should be a one-term president."

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Migrants took 9 out of 10 jobs created under Labour

Daily Mail

"The data showed there were just over 26million people aged 16-64 in employment between April and June 1997. Of those 1,946,000 were foreign born, leaving 24,058,000 born in the UK. By the same period this year, the total in jobs was up more than two million, to 28,107,000. Of those, 3,787,000 were born abroad, and 24,314,000 born in the UK. It means 88 per cent of the rise in employment was accounted for by workers born abroad, and just 12 per cent by those born in the UK.

Ignore leftist hysteria - at last Britain's woken up to the grotesque irony that so many on welfare are better off than hard working families...

Daily Mail
"Even by understated official statistics, more than a third of today’s Londoners were born in another country, ­so Britain’s ­capital has become an international city or a ­foreign one, according to your point of view."

Friday, 29 October 2010

US recovery quickens but more QE expected

"The recovery has so far done little to dent an unemployment rate that's remained close to 10pc and will contribute to the heavy losses Democrats are expected to suffer in next Tuesday's elections. The following day, the Federal Reserve is forecast to unleash more quantitative easing in an effort to stimulate more spending and drive down long-term interest rates."

Halliburton used flawed cement on BP well

"Halliburton Co. used flawed cement in BP Plc's doomed Gulf of Mexico well, which could have contributed to the blowout that sparked the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history, a White House panel said on Thursday."

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Mervyn King must turn off the printing press

"..If all that new money actually were to reach the parts of the economy that needed it, I might have some sympathy. But QE has failed either to expand bank credit to small- and medium-sized enterprises or to lower its cost to them. It has, however, provided spectacular money-making opportunities for the City and inflated new bubbles in bond, commodities and emerging markets.

Goodness knows how central banks will unwind the vast positions they already hold in the debt markets, but the fear that they’ll end up taking the easy option and monetising what the Government owes – permanently adding it to the money supply, as happened in the 1970s – will only add to concerns about inflation.

There are plenty of ways to help the recovery, from raising infrastructure spending (which is perfectly compatible with deficit reduction) to boosting business confidence by enhancing the environment for investment and job creation. But please, no more QE. "

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Greece reignites Europe debt woes

"Europe's debt woes have returned to the fore after Greek premier George Papandreou threw open the door to fresh elections and vowed to liberate the nation from "slavery and surveillance".

Stop printing money! Raise interest rates!

"What was our lowest moment during the financial crisis? I’d say it was being pitied by Zimbabweans because Gordon Brown’s economic mismanagement would lead to hyperinflation.

The cheap money crowd have now been confounded by events: the new GDP figures make a nonsense of the idea that we need further quantitative easing, as the excellent Allister Heath explains. This is not to say that we are already in the broad, sunlit uplands, far from it: there is almost certain to be a slowdown next year. But keeping the pound did the tick. Our exchange rate acted as a shock absorber, allowing us to suffer a the depreciation in our currency instead of in output and jobs. The case for a stiff rise in interest rates, already strong, has now become unarguable."

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

George's Osborne's economic recovery plan for Britain gets double boost

"The UK grew by 0.8pc in the three months to September, according to the first estimate from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), double the rate at which economists were expecting. In another dose of good news, Standard & Poor’s reaffirmed the UK’s AAA credit rating and raised its outlook from "negative" to “stable”.

S&P, which now joins Fitch and Moody’s in placing the UK on its safest rating possible, credited the spending review for the decision, saying: “The decisions reached by the UK Coalition ... reduce risks to the Government’s implementation of its June 2010 fiscal consolidation programme,” S&P said. "

Monday, 25 October 2010

Barack Obama echoes anti-Americanism of Europe in calling voters stupid

"President Obama and his fellow Democrats are mocking Republicans and the Tea Party as stupid. But they could be the ones who look foolish on election day. "

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Cost of EU agencies triples to more than £2 billion

"The cost of funding European Union committees and agencies has more than tripled since 2005 and is on course to reach more than £2 billion next year, new research shows. "

EU budgets and Overseas Aid

John Redwood
"I am all in favour of famine relief, and want our country to be generous when other countries face disaster or extreme poverty. I am not in favour of an EU diplomatic service, and do not think Russia, China and India need our overseas aid. Two of the budgets which are rising over this period of public sector restraint are the EU and Overseas Aid budgets. Over the five years of this planned government £41 billion will be spent on contributions to the EU and £39 billion spent on overseas aid, a grand total of £80 billion. The annual figure for the two combined hits £18.9 billion in 2014-15. The government plans to borrow an extra £460 billion over period 2010-2015, so these two programmes account for over one sixth of the additional borrowing."

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Spending review: The 'cuts' that mean public spending soars

"The one which has rightly drawn most flak is the colossal 47 per cent jump in our spending on overseas aid, due to rise from £7.8 billion to £11.5 billion. This includes, for instance, a further rise in the £800 million a year we already donate to India, one of the world’s fastest growing economies. This will be spent, inter alia, on promoting gender equality, assisting the Indians with their space programme, and of course on climate change (such as the £10 million free gift the Department For International Development is making to Dr Rajendra Pachauri’s Teri research institute). "

Friday, 22 October 2010

Fury as travellers living on Europe's largest illegal camp leapfrog thousands of people on council house waiting list

Daily Mail
"Four travellers facing eviction from Europe's largest illegal travellers' camp have leap-frogged more than 4,500 people to go to the top of a housing list in Essex.However, the residents of the controversial Crays Hill site near Billericay have turned down the properties on offer because they want caravan pitches instead of permanent housing.The news that the four had been prioritised on the housing list was revealed at a hearing at Southend County Court and it will infuriate the local community."

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

UK facing 'Sober' decade, warns Bank of England Governor Mervyn King

"The Governor's call for a transformation in the national character comes as the Chancellor on Wednesday outlines the sharpest spending cuts since at least the Second World War. He will unveil detailed plans to cut spending by £83bn to address the £935bn national debt and £109bn structural deficit – the annual overspend left once the economy has fully recovered. "

Government slashes spending and raises retirement age

"(Reuters) - The government will cut half a million jobs, slash the welfare state and raise the retirement age as part of an unprecedented cost-cutting drive that will test the strength of both the economy and the ruling coalition."

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

£83billion sounds a lot – but these cuts are nowhere near enough

"Today will be a start. It will not, though, be anything like all that is required, and, above all, it will keep spending rising. Any assertion to the contrary will merely be an example of the spin our present masters promised to repudiate, but which they embrace with all the fervour of their unlamented predecessors. "

Foreign worker numbers surge to a record 2.4m as Eastern Europeans return to Britain

Daily Mail
* Eastern European workers reaches record of 551,000
* 2.401million non-UK nationals active in the economy

"The number of foreigners working in Britain has hit an all-time high despite the fragile state of the recovery.This summer, the total topped 2.4million for the first time after thousands arrived from abroad in the spring.Some of them were Poles and other Eastern Europeans who began to return to the UK. The number of Eastern European workers also reached a record – of 551,000.It means the workforce of foreigners has surged by more than a ­million in only seven years."

Monday, 18 October 2010

Anglo-Irish Bondholders Should Take the Losses Is the ECB Forcing Ireland to Protect German Investments?

Guido Fawkes
"Anglo-Irish Bank did not represent a systemic risk to the Irish economy, it wasn’t a high street bank like AIB or the Bank of Ireland. If it had been allowed to go the way of Lehmans the only losers would have been shareholders and bondholders. The Irish state stepped in and nationalised a bank that was basically run by crooks lending to property speculators. The Irish people are taking losses that should rightly have been shouldered by bondholders.

Every child in Ireland is being bequeathed a huge debt at birth to protect the interests of foreign, mainly German, bondholders – why? Guido was once a bond trader, it was always understood that sometimes the bond issuer defaults. That is the risk investors take.

So why is Dublin’s political establishment so keen to protect foreign investors at the expense of future generations? Guido has obtained the list of foreign Anglo-Irish bondholders as at the close of business tonight. These are the people whom Dublin’s politicians really seem to care about: ..."

Irish bank bail-out outrage du jour comes courtesy of Guido Fawkes. FT

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Multiculturalism in Germany has 'utterly failed', claims Chancellor Angela Merkel

Daily Mail
"‘We are a country which at the beginning of the 1960s actually brought guest workers to Germany,’ Ms Merkel said.

‘Now they live with us and we lied to ourselves for a while, saying that they won't stay and that they will have disappeared again one day.

‘That's not the reality. This (multicultural) approach - saying that we simply live side by side and are happy about each other - this approach has failed, utterly failed.’

Saturday, 16 October 2010

China's not the villain if the West tries to debase its debt through QE

"What is now clear is that some of the world's leading economies are deliberately debasing their currencies in order to make their exports more competitive and lower the real value of the massive debts they owe the rest of the world. ..."

The price of a Belgian apparatchik

Hermann Van Rompuy, President of the EU, looks to be a very expensive figurehead indeed, says Christopher Booker, Telegraph
"There was some excitement over the discovery by Bruno Waterfield, The Daily Telegraph’s Brussels correspondent, that the EU President, Hermann van Rompuy, spent more than £4,000 of EU taxpayers’ money on a motorcade, to take nine members of his family to catch a holiday flight from Paris in August. Mr Waterfield also noted that the EU’s new post of president, created under the Lisbon Treaty, has a salary of £263,000 a year, more than President Obama’s.

He might also have added that EU taxpayers are now paying £280 million to build Mr van Rompouy a lavish presidential palace in Brussels – £40 million of it contributed by UK taxpayers."

Friday, 15 October 2010

Pound hits 8-month high as US hints on QE

Daily Mail
"Sterling hit an eight-month high against the dollar today as US monetary chief Ben Bernanke made further overtures towards quantitative easing. But the pound dropped back from its $1.610 high as details on the US Federal Reserve's plans were scant."

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Quango cuts announced

"The Government has announced that 192 public bodies will be abolished or merged as part of David Cameron’s “bonfire of the quangos.” ....The move will save money and also stop ministers being able to “hide behind” quangos as a way of avoiding accountability, Francis Maude, the Cabinet Office minister said. It means of the 901 existing public bodies only 648 will remain, 118 will be merged, 380 will be retained, 171 retained but reformed substantially and 40 remain under consideration. "

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

US Federal Reserve set on QE2 course as dissenter speaks out

"The Federal Reserve's leading opponent against more quantitative easing said there's "no strong evidence" it will work, as the minutes from the central bank's last meeting cemented expectations that his colleagues believe more money printing is necessary. ......Thomas Hoenig, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas, on Tuesday launched his most strident attack yet against QE, arguing it would not help drive an economic recovery.

"There is simply no evidence the additional liquidity would be particularly effective in spurring new investment, accelerating consumption, or cushioning or accelerating the deleveraging that is hopefully winding down," Mr Hoenig told an audience in Denver. "

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Ed Miliband is the costliest politician in British history

When Ed Miliband won the Labour leadership, the commentators overlooked his most startling achievement, says Christopher Booker(Telegraph)
"Signally missing from all the attempts to find any substance in the strangely two-dimensional figure who is now leader of the Labour Party has been any reference to Ed Miliband's most spectacular achievement – the fact that he is potentially the most expensive politician in Britain's history,

The only real contribution David Miliband's little brother has so far made to our lives in his meteoric political career was to put through the 2008 Climate Change Act. This commits Britain, uniquely in the world, to cutting its CO2 emissions by 80 per cent by 2050, at a cost estimated, on the website of his old Department for Energy and Climate Change, at up to £18.3 billion every year for the next four decades. In cash terms this amounts to £734 billion, making it far and away the most costly law ever put through Parliament. It will equate to more than £700 a year for every household in the land, as we pay for thousands more useless windmills and other quixotic gestures through fast-rising taxes, soaring electricity bills, draconian regulatory costs and heaven knows what else. Furthermore, neither Mr Miliband himself, nor any of his Act's supporters, could begin to explain how that 80 per cent target is to be attained without closing down virtually our entire economy."

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Population 'will soar to 70m by 2027': Official figures reveal full impact of migrant influx

Daily Mail
"Britain’s fast-growing population will hit 70million in just 17 years’ time if immigration goes unchecked, official figures revealed yesterday.The projections mean that numbers are racing towards a point which even Labour politicians believe will mean overcrowding and extra costs.The breakdown from the Office for National Statistics shows how the population is expected to rise if different rates of immigration are sustained over the next 25 years.It indicates that numbers will reach 70million in 2027 if net migration – the number of immigrants arriving in the country minus those who leave – continues at last year’s level.The 196,000 added to the population by net migration last year – the equivalent of a city the size of Portsmouth – was the fourth highest level on record."

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

IMF admits that the West is stuck in near depression

"If you strip away the political correctness, Chapter Three of the IMF's World Economic Outlook more or less condemns Southern Europe to death by slow suffocation and leaves little doubt that fiscal tightening will trap North Europe, Britain and America in slump for a long time. "

Monday, 4 October 2010

Wall Street Sees World Economy Decoupling From U.S.

“The world has already become partially decoupled,” Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, a professor at New York’s Columbia University, said in a Sept. 20 interview in Zurich. He will speak at an IMF event this week. "

Friday, 1 October 2010

A trillion and rising: Britain’s £1,000,000,000,000 debt means we now pay as much in interest as we do for defence

Daily Mail
"Britain's debt has grown to a hitherto unimaginable level, it emerged yesterday – smashing the £1trillion barrier for the first time.Government borrowing hit £1,000,389,000,000 at the end of March – or £40,000 per household – the Office for National Statistics said.The figure is so enormous, equivalent to more than one million million pounds, that the country must pay £40billion interest on it in this year alone – roughly what is spent on the entire defence budget.It follows unprecedented levels of spending under Labour which saw the Government borrow nearly £450million a day under Gordon Brown. But the £1trillion figure does not include items such as the cost of public sector pensions and private finance initiatives.Experts believe the true debt, including these hidden items, is between £4trillion and £5trillion."