Thursday, August 21, 2014

Today's links

"Obama, the first African American president (hailed in 2008 by the ISO as a “transformative candidate”), has presided over an unprecedented growth of social inequality, a series of wars, and an assault on the most basic democratic rights." Joseph Kishore, Class, race and the police killing in Ferguson, Missouri, WSWS

1---Subprime auto loans deteriorate, zero hedge

As NBC summarizes: "The repo man is getting very busy as a growing number of car and truck owners are struggling to make their monthly auto loan payments. Experian, which analyses millions of auto loans, said Wednesday that the percentage of those loans that were delinquent or ended up in default with the vehicle being repossessed surged in the second quarter of this year."

Hyperbole? Hardly. In fact, the auto loan subprime bubble may be the latest to burst (after student loans) as the rate of car repossessions jumped 70.2 percent in the second quarter, with much of that increase coming from finance companies not run by automakers, banks or credit unions. The good news: the percentage of auto loans that end in default is just 0.62% of all auto loans. However, as everyone but the Fed knows, what matters is the flow, not the stock, and the direction and acceleration in defaults simply means that the maximum saturation point has been reached and going forward lenders will experience ever greater losses, which in turn will limit their willingness to offer subprime loans to US consumers desperate to find a house (because clearly one doesn't need to home when one can sleep in their Chevy Tahoe).

2---New report details depth of hunger crisis in the United States, wsws
3---The everything bubble, macrobusiness

4---Military Considering Sending Additional Troops To Iraq, Officials Say, AP

5---Relaunching the war on terror, wsws

Obama’s remarks were saturated through and through with deceit and hypocrisy. For all the talk of “American values” standing as the opposite of ISIS, the reality is that the retrograde Islamist movement is in the final analysis a product of US imperialism’s successive interventions in the region.
Horrific crimes like that committed against James Foley have been taking place for years, many of them proudly recorded and posted on YouTube by the ISIS propaganda department. Members of religious minorities and others have been beheaded, crucified, subjected to mass shootings and buried alive.

The Obama administration remained silent about these crimes because they were carried out in Syria by ISIS and other Sunni sectarian Islamists operating under the umbrella of the so-called rebels, whose operations have been backed by Washington in a war for “regime change” against the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
For the same reason, the kidnapping of James Foley, Steven Sotloff and at least three other American journalists received little attention in Washington, since their abductors were the US-backed “rebels,” rather than the regime that the US is seeking to overthrow.

The same Islamist fighters that the Obama administration backed in Syria—and in the US-NATO war for regime change in Libya three years ago—as champions of “freedom” and “democracy” suddenly became “terrorists” when they swept across the border into Iraq, linking up with Sunni insurgents and overwhelming the US-trained security forces.

In an attempt to confront the debacle created by its own policies, from the destruction of Iraqi society and the killing of upwards of a million Iraqis in a war based upon lies through to the backing of Islamist “rebels” in Libya and Syria, the Obama administration is now embarked on a third US war in Iraq, carrying out nearly 90 airstrikes in the past two weeks and deploying a growing number of US military “advisers...

the New York Daily News, headlined “There must be blood,” and concluding that Obama’s “limited objectives and rules of engagements” in Iraq “will no longer serve.” The clear implication is that Foley’s tragic death must be turned into the pretext for another full-scale US war of aggression in the Middle East.

6---Class, race and the police killing in Ferguson, Missouri, wsws
In response to the eruption of popular anger over the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, the ruling class has employed a two-pronged strategy. It has mobilized the repressive apparatus of the state—militarized police firing tear gas and rubber bullets at peaceful protesters, the declaration of a “state of emergency” by the governor of Missouri, the deployment of the National Guard, the imposition of de facto martial law.
At the same time, after the initial outrage over the transformation of Ferguson into a war zone, the ruling elite has mobilized the political and media practitioners of identity politics.

The aim is to try to convince the workers and youth of majority-African American Ferguson and beyond that if those heading the apparatus of repression are likewise African American, this somehow makes the destruction of their democratic rights acceptable, even progressive. Political hucksters Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson were flown into the city last weekend to preach “unity” with the police and heap praise on the new head of security operations, the African American Missouri Highway Patrol captain, Ron Johnson.

With the media obsessing on the question of race (CNN hosted a town hall conversation on race and Ferguson Tuesday night in which the moderators actually segregated black and white participants), a column published this past weekend in Time magazine by former basketball star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is, however limited its political conclusions, refreshing.

Under the headline “The Coming Race War Won’t Be About Race,” Abdul-Jabbar writes that it is necessary to “address the situation [in Ferguson] not just as another act of systemic racism, but as what else it is: class warfare.” Opposing those who foster racial (and also gender) divisions, he insists that “this fist-shaking of everyone’s racial agenda distracts America from the larger issue that the targets of police overreaction are based less on skin color and more on an even worse Ebola-level affliction: being poor.”....

In declaring that the “starting point” for understanding what happened in Ferguson is not class or economic inequality—ABC for any socialist—but race, the ISO brands itself as an anti-socialist and anti-working class organization. Race is a factor in American life, including the ruling class’s system of police repression. It is, however, a secondary and subordinate factor, and one that is bound up with basic class issues.
In a society based on the economic exploitation of the working class, the state is an instrument of class oppression, not racial oppression. Contrary to the provocative claims of Zirin, many victims of police brutality are white (one could cite the murder of James Boyd in Albuquerque earlier this year), while the police in cities like Detroit are predominantly black. The majority of poor in the United States are white, while the most concentrated levels of poverty and oppression of African American workers can be found in cities that have been run by African American politicians for decades.

9---Average delinquency for loans in foreclosure: 995 days, oc housing

I am now convinced that the servicing banks are simply not interested in pursuing foreclosure. I suspect that most of the lenders are unwilling to take the hit on their earnings that foreclosing would compel them to do....

Many of those most deeply underwater borrowed too much money at the peak either to buy or to refinance. Most couldn’t afford a fully-amortized payment on the loan, so when they borrowed, they either used interest-only or negative amortization loans. Many of those loans blew up and were foreclosed, but many more were modified. Most private-label modified home loans do not amortize, and of the 7 million modified loans, about 5.5 million are private-label. ...

As I have argued repeatedly for several years, this trade-up market is dead. You must get used to that idea

10---MH17 Verdict: Real Evidence Points to US-Kiev Cover-up of Failed False Flag, 21 century wire

11--Boeing-777 was downed by Ukrainian MiG-29, Romanian expert says, Pravda

12--Iran Says Ready To Supply Natural Gas To Europe , RFE

13---Interview with Sergei Glaziev (MUST SEE!) ,  vineyard of the saker

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