Jeez,  you talk about a target-rich news morning…

The big Distraction du Jure is the Russian fly-by of an American destroyer in the Baltic Sea.

imageThe US destroyer was close enough to Russian home soil that fighters overflew the USS Donald Cook at low altitude.  Photos released by the Navy, such at the one at right, reveal how close the Russian jets were.

The Navy press release also makes for very interesting reading:

STUTTGART, Germany (NNS) — A United States Navy destroyer operating in international waters in the Baltic Sea experienced several close interactions by Russian aircraft April 11 and 12.
USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) encountered multiple, aggressive flight maneuvers by Russian aircraft that were performed within close proximity of the ship.

On April 11, Donald Cook was conducting deck landing drills with an allied military helicopter when two Russian SU-24 jets made numerous close-range and low altitude passes at approximately 3 p.m. local. One of the passes, which occurred while the allied helicopter was refueling on the deck of Donald Cook, was deemed unsafe by the ship’s commanding officer. As a safety precaution, flight operations were suspended until the SU-24s departed the area.

On April 12, while Donald Cook was operating in international waters in the Baltic Sea, a Russian KA-27 Helix helicopter conducted circles at low altitude around the ship, seven in total, at approximately 5 p.m. local. The helicopter passes were also deemed unsafe and unprofessional by the ship’s commanding officer. About 40 minutes following the interaction with the Russian helicopter, two Russian SU-24 jets made numerous close-range and low altitude passes, 11 in total. The Russian aircraft flew in a simulated attack profile and failed to respond to repeated safety advisories in both English and Russian. USS Donald

Cook’s commanding officer deemed several of these maneuvers as unsafe and unprofessional.

“April 11-12, USS Donald Cook was operating in a professional manner in international waters conducting operations and exercises with our allies in the Baltic Sea.”

“In my judgement these maneuvers in close proximity to Donald Cook are unprofessional and unsafe.”
-Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, Adm. Mark Ferguson

Quick Facts:
We have deep concerns about the unsafe and unprofessional Russian flight maneuvers. These actions have the potential to unnecessarily escalate tensions between countries and could result in a miscalculation or accident that could cause serious injury or death.

U.S. officials are using existing diplomatic channels to address the interactions while the incidents are also being reviewed through U.S. Navy channels.

Of course, the Russians came back with the expected “Who – Me?”

CPI is Out

Just in from the Labor Department:

“The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.1 percent in March on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.

Over the last 12 months, the all items index rose 0.9 percent before seasonal adjustment.

The food index declined in March, while the indexes for energy and for all items less food and energy rose, leading to the slight seasonally adjusted increase in the all items index.

The food index fell 0.2 percent after rising in February, as five of the six major grocery store food groups declined. The energy index rose for the first time since November, with all of its major components except natural gas increasing.

While the index for all items less food and energy increased in March, the 0.1 percent advance was the smallest increase since August. Major component indexes were mixed in March.

The indexes for shelter, recreation, medical care, education, tobacco, and personal care were among those that rose, while the indexes for apparel, airline fares, communication, household furnishings and operations, and used cars and trucks all declined.

The all items index rose 0.9 percent over the last 12 months, a slightly smaller increase than the 1.0-percent change for the 12 months ending February.

The index for all items less food and energy has risen 2.2 percent over the last 12 months, and the food index has increased 0.8 percent. Despite rising in March, the energy index has declined 12.6 percent over the last year.

The numbers, as usual, require a couple of shots of compass juice and ViseGrips to be taken seriously.

The Feds figure month-on-month gasoline is up 2.2%. but when I push out Tripe A data the increase is more like 8.4%.  And I don’t know where the gov-types are finding cheaper food.  I mean seriously?

In our work on the replay of 1929 (were in 1928 now) we expect we will have at least another five years of generally falling prices.

The dynamic is simple:  When inflation is rolling, people tend to “buy now because it will only cost more later.”

When DEFLATION is rolling, as it is beginning to now, people will “Hold off buying because it will be cheaper later.”

These two concepts are diametrically opposed and it’s one of the reasons that consumer psychology drives the economic longwave to such extremes.

Futures are flat and the volume has been falling on this rally, so I expect the week will end soft and give back some gains, but this is not trading advice.

The China Gold Yuan Rumor

OK, listen up here, because a number of people have asked me to comment on a story that hit this week suggesting that a Golden Yuan would come out next week and that would send gold to the moon and yada, yada, Obama-Yellen meeting, yada, yada, terrorism, yada, yada.


The likely reason for the Obama-Yellen sit-down with Veep Joe on hand was to talk about how reactions  could run if the Fed raises rates next week.  You saw the CPI was going up a bit in Europe, recently?

With former Fed bosses saying they held rates too low for too long, it becomes clear with careful consideration that if low rates are not raised soon, we will arrive as what I call Ure’s Discontinuity.

That’s the point where there is so little money left in holding bonds that virtually all bond money has to go looking for higher returns.

You know, a lot of pension funds are already getting close to the brink.  You saw where Retired Teamsters Rally in Washington to Save Pensions?  This is because a lot of pension funds were designed predicated on a 7% prevailing interest rate.  I expect you’d head to Washington, too, if you were about to take a 38% haircut on your retirement.  So that’s the reality of what is coming next week.

The Fed Open Market Committee is due to make a rate decision next week, and while the stock market rally has been nice, the larger reality is that the echo of 1928 suggests the Fed will have to move at the next meeting.

When they do, there will be no end of howling and yowling. 

Do I expect the Chinese to announce a new currency next week?  Nope.

But terrorism?  Sure, the Murder Cycle comes into force tomorrow…so any time in here all the way up to Hitler’s birthday on April 19, is prime time for mayhem.

But on the 20th, could be a rate hike, so chamomile tea, perhaps?  If China was “going gold” the price would already be through $1,500 on its way to perhaps twice that.

Not yet, but like they say in the newspapering business, it sells papers.

The Internet is not about integrity of being right on calls – it’s about popularity, whether based on facts or suppositions.

Not That We Didn’t Expect This

But here’s the story about how a Shoe Company – New Balance – is outing what we already suspected:  Namely that the Trans Pacific Partnership, which is a corporate glad-handing deal to fatten profits really screws American workers.

So when you read about how turncoat Paul Ryan has other aspirations, remember the New Balance remarks, reported on WMTW over here about how the Obama administration leaned on the company not to let out what a bad deal TPP is.

As we’ve said numerous times, Paul Ryan runs the Obama wing of the GOP – which used to believe in America first, small budgets, and so forth.  No longer, seems.

Even with the latest BIG LIES about TPP being outed by an American company, we still read headlines like Paul Ryan Is Still Running for President.

Amazing.  But then again, given Hillary can buy the presidency on the backs of millions of stupid voters, I suppose everything goes in the deranged world of today.

And in the Hate-Trump pile-on, here’s another snippet of insanity.

Global Warming Impacts Grow

We don’t feel anything except a financial chill as The largest U.S. coal company just filed for bankruptcy.

Directorate 153 Files

Yes, I know that our Directorate 153 agency – which run s the world through hidden control of top power holders is not real.  Of course a Cold War era experiment in continuity of government could never manage a world as complex as the one we live in.

But that hasn’t stopped David in Research from BCCing us reports to the Director of this fictional agency:

Dear Director,

A Ghost has visited upon the Twitter account of an alleged German IS fighter, @haassn541. Caution: there is a graphic image in the link.

A maze of followers are attached to the account. One follower is @alsarim73 who himself has a follower @sam_samson24. The latter has recently commenced posting news updates of a non-msm variety.

This message became stuck in North American processing. Thanks to Yandex west of the Urals for being the friendly intermediary at keeping the mail moving.


So is it possible?  No, not the twit-jack.  But the idea that more is orchestrated in the mood of the public than we care to admit?

And that computational psycho0dynamics are a finer science than anyone knew?