The Pentagon equates peace, democracy, human rights, etc. with what it calls “a rules-based international order advanced by US leadership.” This is a euphemism for US imperialist hegemony over the entire planet, where Washington makes the rules and everyone follows, or else.
The American ruling class is acutely aware that its power is declining relative to rival powers, particularly China, and that US military superiority is itself threatened by the decline in the world economic position of US capitalism and growth of internal social antagonisms, which make it more difficult to sustain overseas military interventions.
The document declares, “We support China’s rise and encourage it to become a partner for greater international security,” and then proceeds to outline the US strategy to economically and militarily encircle the country. It states: “[W]e will press forward with the rebalance to the Asia-Pacific region, placing our most advanced capabilities and greater capacity in that vital theater. We will strengthen our alliances with Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the Philippines, and Thailand. We also will deepen our security relationship with India and build upon our partnerships with New Zealand, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Bangladesh
2--Global parasitism creates conditions for a new financial meltdown
3--"When People Jump In Even Though It's Overpriced, That's A Bubble" Shiller Warns
4---Mortgage applications drop as interest rates rise to 9-month high
The spring selling season is overMortgage applications decreased 4.7% from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending June 26, 2015.
The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 4.7% on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 5% compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 5% from the previous week to its lowest level since December 2014
7--Americans Not In The Labor Force Soar By 640,000 To Record 93.6 Million; Participation Rate Drops To 1977 Levels
The devastation of the US labor force continues.
In what was an "unambiguously" unpleasant June jobs payrolls report, with both April and May jobs revised lower, the fact that the number of Americans not in the labor force soared once again, this time by a whopping 640,000 or the most since April 2014 to a record 93.6 million, with the result being a participation rate of 62.6 or where itt was in September 1977, will merely catalyze even more upside to the so called "market" which continues to reflect nothing but central bank liquidity, and thus - the accelerating deterioration of the broader economy.
8---Grantham on stock buybacks
Grantham argues that capitalism is failing for now. He blames the rise of “stock option culture” and a complicit U.S. fed for the problem. Up to 80% of executive compensation now flows from stock options, which are tied to short-term performance of a company’s stock rather than long-term performance of the company. People respond to the incentives they’re given, so managers tend toward those actions which increase the value of their stock options. Investing in the company is slow, uncertain and risky, and so capital expenditures (“capex”) by publicly-traded firms is falling. Buying back stock (overpriced or not) and issuing dividends is quick, clean and safe, and so that sort of financial engineering expands. Interest rates at or near zero even encourage the issuance of debt to fund buybacks (“Peter, meet Paul”). It would be possible to constrain the exercise of options, but we choose not to. And so firms are not moving capital into new ventures or into improving existing capabilities which, in the short run, continues to underwrite record profit margins.
9--US Military of high alert for 4th of july
The Defense Department joined the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI on Wednesday in warning of the threat of an ISIS attack in the U.S. over the 4th of July holiday weekend.
"Those who seek to harm this nation take no holiday," Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said at a Pentagon press briefing with Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey.
Dempsey said U.S. bases nationwide were on higher alert, and Carter said that "some of our service members will be hard at work" over the weekend to deter the threat, without specifying what would be involved.
The bulletin to local law enforcement came after “intelligence was picked up in various ways indicating something could be happening over the Fourth of July that was initiated by ISIS supporters,” Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) said during an interview on CNN’s “Wolf Blitzer Reports.”
“I mean, going back to dealing with the FBI and Homeland Security over the last two or three weeks, I would say this is the most intense level of concern I've seen, maybe since 9/11,” he added.
10--Arm Ukraine? Carter says yes
While both the United States and Russia should step back from the brink, many Obama administration officials are pushing for a dangerous escalatory step: the shipment of billions of dollars of lethal weapons to the post-Maidan government in Ukraine.
The lobbying to arm Ukraine began in February when three of the nation’s leading think tanks released a widely-read report arguing for the United States to provide Ukraine with $3 billion of lethal arms. Since then both the Senate and House passed legislation calling for the United States to arm Ukraine, while Secretary of State Kerry, Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter and U.S. Air Force General and NATO Supreme Allied Commander Philip Breedlove publicly advocated this policy. In fact, the only senior official not pushing this agenda is President Barack Obama — though the pressure on him to do so is growing.
11--New military strategy or old wine in new bottles?
12--US means Russia harm
"Russia's military actions are undermining regional security directly and through proxy forces," it added, naming Russia among "revisionist-minded" states.
13--Factory Orders Scream Recession: Annual Drop Biggest Since 2008
14--Here Is What’s Fraying Nerves Among the Financial Stability Folks at Treasury
15--Russia Stops Gas Supplies to Ukraine