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August 8 2022


Senate Democrats just passed a bill that will raise taxes on small businesses and middle-class families, hire 87,000 new IRS agents, crush U.S. manufacturing, shrink the economy, and make inflation WORSE.

Banks, the chairman of the Republican Study Committee (RSC), released a memo detailing that, although the Inflation Reduction Act pales in comparison to the size of the $1.9 trillion Build Back Better Act, it remains a “transformative” bill that is “just as radical and destructive” as the Build Back Better bill.

To illustrate this point, Banks and the RSC noted dozens of radical policies contained in the bill, including:

  1. The bill’s giveaway to green energy would increase American reliance on China for rare earth minerals
  2. The legislation increases taxes just as the country is entering a recession
  3. The bill contains many budget gimmicks and fake offsets to mask the cost of the bill. When accounting for these budget tricks, the alleged deficit reduction bill would add $114 billion in debt over ten years
  4. The legislation would add $80 billion in funds to supersize the IRS’s ability to audit Americans. This would especially harm middle-class Americans.
  5. The Inflation Reduction Act contains a “socialist price control regime” to aim to lower drug prices
  6. Expand Obamacare by extending enhanced Obamacare subsidies
  7. Create an “environmental justice solar and wind capacity limitation program” to further the Democrats’ “radical ‘environmental justice’ agenda”
  8. $8.45 billion to further “environmental justice in agriculture”
  9. $3 billion for the Department of Transportation to undertake projects to address racism in infrastructure
  10. $5 billion to support $250 billion in Department of Energy loan guarantees and loan refinancing for green energy infrastructure and remediation activities.
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  • A cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militants took effect late Sunday in a bid to end nearly three days of violence.
  • The fighting killed dozens of Palestinians and disrupted the lives of hundreds of thousands of Israelis.
  • The flare-up was the worst fighting between Israel and Gaza militant groups since Israel and Hamas fought an 11-day war last year.
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  • All 50 Senate Democrats and the independents who caucus with them voted Sunday against an amendment to the Inflation Reduction Act that would federally define pregnancy as a condition unique to biological females. 

    Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced the measure to the sweeping budget reconciliation bill in a marathon voting session in which Republicans introduced dozens of provisions that don't have the votes to be enacted but force Democrats to take a stance on contentious issues. The GOP so far has only been successful in one matter, blocking a provision that would cap the monthly price of insulin at $35.

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    Semiconductors – also known as computer chips or just chips – are integral to all the networked devices that have become embedded into our lives. They also have advanced military applications. Transformational, super-fast 5G internet is enabling a world of connected devices of every kind (the “Internet of Things”) and a new generation of networked weapons. With this in mind, U.S .officials began to realise during the Trump administration that U.S. semiconductor design companies, such as Intel, were heavily dependent on Asian-based supply chains to manufacture their products.

    In particular, Taiwan’s position in the world of semiconductor manufacturing is a bit like Saudi Arabia’s status in OPEC. TSMC has a 53 percent market share of the global foundry market (factories contracted to make chips designed in other countries). Other Taiwan-based manufacturers claim a further 10 percent of the market.

    As a result, the Biden administration’s 100-Day Supply Chain Review Report says, “The United States is heavily dependent on a single company – TSMC – for producing its leading-edge chips.” The fact that only TSMC and Samsung (South Korea) can make the most advanced semiconductors (five nanometres in size) “puts at risk the ability to supply current and future [US] national security and critical infrastructure needs.”

    This means that China’s long-term goal of reunifying with Taiwan is now more threatening to U.S. interests. In the 1971 Shanghai Communique and the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act, the U.S. recognised that people in both mainland China and Taiwan believed that there was “One China” and that they both belonged to it. But for the U.S. it is unthinkable that TSMC could one day be in territory controlled by Beijing.

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    This weekend saw four more ships carrying grain and sunflower oil depart Ukraine ports through the UN-brokered safe maritime corridor in the Black Sea, overseen by a joint coordination center in Istanbul staffed by Ukrainian, Russian, Turkish and UN officials.

    This as the Razoni cargo ship which was the first to depart Odesa carrying 27,000 tonnes of corn last week, is making its way to the Lebanese port of Tripoli, though not on time. The latest series of ships departed the ports of Odesa and Chornomorsk on Sunday, and their sailing has given rise to greater hopes of export stabilityBBC reports, as millions in Ukraine-grain dependent countries are facing famine conditions. 

    Two of the vessels are reportedly bound for Italy, while the other pair are going to China, after they are expected to dock in Turkey for international inspections under the terms of the UN safety corridor deal. In total they've been estimated to be laden with 160,000 tons of corn and other foodstuffs.

    The BBC writes, "Ukrainian authorities say there are good signs that the grain exports are safe, and have urged companies to return to the country's ports." And further: "The hope is that the exports will help ease the global food crisis while bringing in much needed foreign currency."

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    They'll never admit to it openly, but getting woke makes companies broke.  Hollywood has been overtly progressive for decades, but this is nothing compared to the social justice invasion since 2016.  After around five years of an unprecedented leftist onslaught on the entertainment industry we are finally starting to see the rampage lose oxygen.  There's a weakness within woke productions that the alternative media has been pointing out for a long time – They don't make a profit because they are designed to appease a minority of leftist zennials that don't have any money.  This is the wrong crowd to rely on for cash flow.     

    It is fair to say that the entertainment industry was partially conned.  First, there are those tantalizing ESG loans that can be easily had as long a company loudly declares their fealty to the social justice agenda.  Then, of course, there is the fact that many corporate CEOs and marketing people track Twitter trends with the ignorant assumption that Twitter is actually a reflection of the real world.  The woke mob on Twitter is amplified by the company itself, while most contrary voices are stifled and buried.  Anyone using the Twitter echo chamber as a marketing gauge would be led to believe that leftist ideology is the prevailing ideology of the nation.  It's not even close.

     

    Some companies are finally realizing this fact and are taking action to reduce their exposure to woke content, or otherwise perish from loss of viewership.  Here's the thing – Leftists could take over every platform for media distribution (they almost have), but they still can't force the public to consume woke content.  Eventually, the loss of viewers and profits is going to hurt their bottom line.  

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    An aide to a congressman impersonated an FBI agent and openly carried a gun, violating the law in Washington, according to court documents.

    Sterling Carter, who worked for Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Ill.) at the time, was spotted on Nov. 14, 2020, wearing a black shirt with “Federal Agent” emblazoned across the front and back, and equipped with a full police duty belt that contained handcuffs, a pistol, two magazines, and a radio with an earpiece, according to an affidavit filed by U.S. authorities in District of Columbia court.

    When officers approached Carter to figure out his identity, he pointed to a badge on his belt and said that he was with the FBI. When asked for his credentials, Carter said he did not have them on him, and hopped in his vehicle and sped away despite being ordered to stop.

    The officers were unable to chase the man down.

    Officers and agents with the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Capitol Police, the FBI, and the Metropolitan Police Department launched a joint effort to figure out the identity of the man, and eventually confirmed him as Carter through contact with the seller of the t-shirt and the company from which he obtained a custom license plate.

    The owner of the property at which Carter resided and neighbors told agents that Carter was seen dressing as a member of law enforcement. However, officers found out that Carter was a staffer for a member of Congress. They also learned he did not have a concealed weapons permit or any other firearm registration certificates.

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    During six months of war in Ukraine there have been some instances of Russian satellite states providing "volunteer" forces - with Chechens being a foremost reported group of foreign fighters said to be in Ukraine. But Russian state media recently presented the biggest offer of foreign troops yet, reportedly from an unlikely "pariah" nation also long at odds with the United States.

    North Korea has said it is willing to send 100,000 "volunteer" troops to help Vladimir Putin execute the ongoing war in Ukraine, Business Insider has reported, citing Channel One Russia. Russian military pundit Igor Korotchenko made the claim to the state broadcaster, saying further that the DPRK military could provide a "wealth of experience with counter-battery warfare."

    "If North Korea expresses a desire to meet its international duty to fight against Ukrainian fascism, we should let them," Korotchenko was also quoted in New York Post as saying.

    This comes amid unverified Western media claims that Russia has suffered huge and unexpected numbers of casualties, to the point of being "desperate" - and reportedly being forced to provide abbreviated and ineffective training to new recruits.

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    Economic slowdown but no recession! That message comes from the latest employment report, service sector data, and Federal Reserve.

    “We’re not in a recession right now. We do have these two-quarters of negative GDP growth. To some extent, a recession is in the eyes of the beholder. With all the job growth in the first half of the year, it’s hard to say there’s a recession. With a flat unemployment rate at 3.6 percent, it’s hard to say there’s a recession,” stated James Bullard, St. Louis Federal Reserve president.

    Such a statement certainly belies much of the economic consensus that two-quarters of negative economic growth constitutes a recession. As shown, the latest GDP report indeed met that measure.

    Source: St Louis Federal Reserve, Refinitiv Chart: RealInvestmentAdvice.com

     

    However, as stated, some indicators suggest the economy is in a slowdown but not yet in a recession. For example, our composite Institute of Supply Management (ISM) survey is still in expansionary territory. Since services make up about 80 percent of the economy today, there is currently support for economic growth. However, the data trend is negative and suggests the view of an economic slowdown.

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    These liberal media “watchdogs” have become today’s “lapdogs.” Instead of reporting factually, the liberal media strive to find “positive” news to boost the sagging poll numbers for President Joe Biden and the Democrats.

    The latest example of this cheerleading occurred with the release of the July jobs by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It showed an increase of 528,000 jobs from June, while the unemployment rate dropped to 3.5%, matching the nation’s lowest level in the past fifty years.

    This report was better than the expectations that the economy would add 250,000 new jobs in July. Soon after the announcement was made, President Joe Biden boasted that the report was a positive economic sign. He said, “Today’s jobs report shows that the economy added 528,000 jobs in July. More people are working than at any point in American history. That is no accident, it’s results.”

    Vice President Kamala Harris noted that the “unemployment rate matches the lowest it’s been in more than 50 years. More people are working than ever before.”

    Does this report indicate that the economy is doing well, and the American people are prospering? Are “Happy Days Here Again?” No, in fact, the economy is in serious trouble and so are the American people.

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    Americans’ perception of the economy hit the lowest point since the 2008 crash in a new poll showing the Republican Party is more trusted to handle these kitchen table issues.

    In an ABC News/Ipsos poll released Sunday, 69 percent of Americans claim that the country’s economy is ‘getting worse’, while just 12 percent say it is ‘getting better’ under President Joe Biden’s leadership.

    The last time that particular survey produced results like that was right in the middle of the last financial crisis.

    Most of you still remember the “Great Recession” very well, and there are many that believe that what we are heading into will be even worse.

    That same ABC News/Ipsos poll also discovered that Biden’s economic approval rating has fallen even lower

    Biden specifically has a 37 percent overall approval on his handling of the economy – the lowest point in the polling since he took office last year.

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    (Ezekiel LosekeHeadline USA) Cracker Barrell recently announced that it is including artificial meat in its menu, thus annoying its conservative customers.

    Cracker Barrel announced that it would begin serving “impossible sausage,” a plant-based pork substitute, via Facebook on August 1st according to Fox 9 KMSP.

    The meat substitute is currently an option in the “build your own breakfast” menu, per the Facebook post.

    Cracker Barrel’s choice to include a meat substitute coincides with other chains, like McDonald’s, pulling their meat substitute products.

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    In June 2021, Democrats attempted the so-called “For The People Act” which, among other things, would eliminate most states’ Voter ID laws.  The legislation failed in the Senate, presumably in part due to conflicts with existing laws regarding voting.  After the attempted legislation failed, Vice President Kamala Harris revealed the Democrats’ fallback strategy.  Since the legislation hadn’t worked, the Biden Administration was resorting to executive orders.  “And then it is a matter of continuing to do the work of executive orders, doing the work through the Department of Justice, which has been litigating these cases in the various states,” Harris told CBS News, “because we believe they are a violation of the spirit of the Constitution of the United States.”  The order essentially accomplishes through executive action what could not be accomplished through lawful legislative means, due to legal conflicts.  Daily Caller stated on the subsequent executive order:  “In May 2021, President Joe Biden signed an executive order directing federal agencies to turn into the Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy, “a strategic plan outlining the ways identified under this review that the agency can promote voter registration and voter participation.”  Experts are saying the order may violate a number of federal laws

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    since March, the Establishment Survey shows a gain of 1.680 million jobs while the Household Survey shows an employment loss of 168K!

     

    But wait, there's more, because digging in even deeper, we find that this drop in Household Survey employment is the result of both full-time and part-time jobs. In fact, as shown below, since March, the US has lost 141K full-time employees and 78K part-time employees.

     

    This trend has persisted into June, when according to the BLS, the US labor force saw a 71K drop in full-time workers offset by a 384K gain in far lower paying part-timers (source). The offset? Multiple jobholders, or people who have more than one job. 

    As shown below, while  the number of total employees (per the Household Survey) has stagnated, the number of multiple jobholders has been growing steadily, hitting a new post-covid high in June of 7,541 million.

     

    The increase for June? 92K, which stands in stark contrast to the sharp drop in full-time job holders. But even more notable is that since June, the US has lost 141K full-time jobs, 78K part-time jobs, while adding a whopping 263K multiple jobholders.

     

    And even more remarkable: the number of multiple jobholders whose primary and secondary jobs are both full-time just hit a record high! Hardly the sign of a strong job market, one where people can afford to quit jobs at will.

     

    So what's going on here? The simple answer: Fewer people working, but more people working more than one job, a rotation which picked up in earnest some time in March and which has only been captured by the Household survey.

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