Newspaper logo  
 
 
Local Stories, Events

Ref. : Civic Events

Ref. : Arts & Education Events

Ref. : Public Service Notices

Books, Films, Arts & Education
Letters

Ref. : Letters to the editor

Health Care & Environment

09.23 Nasa launches satellite to precisely track how Earth's ice is melting

09.23 Climate study ‘pulls punches’ to keep polluters on board

09.21 Greed is killing Alaska's salmon habitat – but we can still save it

09.21 Trump administration poses new threat to birds in allowing ‘incidental’ killings

09.20 Al Gore Is Still Optimistic [24:06 video; rather than future Frankenstein governments, how can we better ensure having brilliantly efficient & competent governments?]

09.20 The $11 trillion question Chris Cillizza can't answer

09.20 Florence sparks pollution fears after excrement-filled 'hog lagoons' overflow

09.20 EU must end new petrol and diesel car sales by 2030 to meet climate targets – report

News Media Matters

09.22 Progressives to DNC: It Would Be 'Insane' Not to Hand Over Twitter Account to Ocasio-Cortez

09.20 Morning Edition’s Think Tank Sources Lean to the Right

09.19 Taibbi: Bernie Sanders’ Anti-Amazon Bill Is an Indictment of the Media, Too

Daily: FAIR Blog
The Daily Howler

US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'

09.23 MARYLAND GOVERNOR REBUFFS CALL FOR CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION INTO BRETT KAVANAUGH ATTEMPTED RAPE ALLEGATIONS [Republicans above the law...]

09.23 Trump Is Strangling the U.S. Refugee Program to Death

09.23 Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 11/9" Aims Not at Trump But at Those Who Created the Conditions That Led to His Rise

09.23 The Trump Administration's Latest Tax Scam for the Rich [video]

09.23 One Tiny Tax Reform, Billions for America

09.22 As Right-Wingers Push Trump to Fire Rosenstein, Here's What to Do If He Does

09.21 400,000 Americans in 900 Cities Ready to Take to Streets If President Trump Fires Rosenstein After NYT Bombshell

Justice Matters

09.22 Making Tariffs Corrupt Again

09.22 Why isn't Mark Judge testifying about Kavanaugh? He is an alleged witness

High Crimes?

09.20 Trump Should Be More Worried About the Brennan Dossier

09.19 'Killing a generation': one million more children at risk from famine in Yemen [Does America's government have empathy? Does it understand the concept of morality? The Saudi Air Force would be ineffective without U.S. military assistance...]

09.19 ‘Tied to trees and raped’: UN report details Rohingya horrors

09.16 Merchants of Death Profit from the Bombing of Children as a US-Backed War Goes Largely Ignored

Economics, Crony Capitalism

09.23 The Spider’s Web: Britain’s Second Empire [1:18:01 documentary video]

09.23 Why We Have To Break Up Amazon

International & Futurism

09.23 For This Year’s International Day of Peace, Korea Takes the Lead

09.22 Which nation is 'most generous' to refugees? Certainly not the US

09.18 Racist rioting in Chemnitz has reopened Germany’s east-west split [After 10,000 generations, we are all mixed-race. So let's become friends with our cousins instead!]

We are a non-profit Internet-only newspaper publication founded in 1973. Your donation is essential to our survival.

You can also mail a check to:
Baltimore News Network, Inc.
P.O. Box 42581
Baltimore, MD 21284-2581
Google
This site Web
  Thinking About Warnings

COMMENTARY:

Thinking About Warnings

by Fred Cederholm
Things happen that are harbingers of more things to come. We don’t always see isolated and random events as warnings. That may be a major mistake on our parts.

I’ve been thinking about warnings. Actually I’ve been thinking about volcanoes, Toyotas, Goldman Sachs, the money supply, US Treasury Securities, foreclosures, and my silver PT Cruiser. Things happen that are harbingers of more things to come. We don’t always see isolated and random events as warnings. That may be a major mistake on our parts. How often days, weeks, or months later do we TH*NK: “Gee, I should of...”?

You see despite all the occurrences that actually DIDN’T make the news last week, there were a number of events, or happenings, which I see as warnings. Planet earth is clearly not as stable a place as we want to TH*NK. The Eyjafjallokull eruptions in Iceland have basically shut down air travel to (and within) Europe. Iceland’s volcanoes generally smolder, burp, and send off ash, but the last week’s events were something to watch closely. While some airports want to re-begin take offs and landings, the cloud of fine ash over the UK, Scandinavia, Central Europe, and Eastern Europe to the Ural Mountains has not dissipated. Airlines are now losing $200 MILLION a day. Although the ash cloud from Iceland continues to linger and grow, pressure is on to fasten seat belts and re-fill the empty skies. Does this mean that a warning is now being ignored? Are they playing fast and loose with passengers?

The past problems of Toyota vehicles accelerating on their own has resulted in a $16.4 MILLION fine to be made payable to Uncle $ugar. A bundle of memos, emails, and letters indicate that Toyota tried to sweep massive quality control problems under their floor mats. The government could have used the $15 BILLION in fines they actually sought, but were capped out at the $16.4 MILLION that was just announced. Toyota isn’t admitting any guilt, but agreed to pay the $16.4 MILLION to put “the matter behind them.” (YEAH, right!!!) Such a “NOLO CONTENDERE” (no innocence, but no guilt either) plea brought back so many memories of my days working as a forensic accountant for the FDIC/ RTC. I can really laugh about this because I was the one who put together “the smoking gun” evidence which was sealed (and I am still under a gag order) by the RTC settlement decree(s) on my cases.

Goldman Sachs, the famous Wall Street investment firm, was dinged for telling many of their clients to invest in mortgage backed securities, while at the same time short selling the securities and betting that they would be worth less, or even worthless. How could such a two faced duplicity be the case? Well under the A,B,C’s of investing. A’s are for averages, B’s are for brokers, and C’s are for commissions! In this case, the C’s are much more desirable than any A’s, or any B’s. At this point, whether the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) will pursue criminal charges against Goldman, or what will be the ultimate fine, penalty, restitution to Uncle $ugar is still open to question. The timing of last week’s disclosures is fortuitous because the Obama Administration is preparing its case that a return to regulation of the banks and investments is highly desirable. The President may not have been able to fly to Poland for a funeral; but unless the Yellowstone Caldron erupts, he will be flying around the US pushing for financial system reform and regulation. The Goldman case is clearly a warning.

News from the US Treasury is highly suspicious. Every week Treasury securities are rolled over and new/ additional ones are offered for sale. In the 2010 year, Uncle $ugar will need to borrow at least another $1.6 TRILLION. This should result in an increasing money supply, and an increase in interest rates! What we are seeing is that the money supply is actually contracting (?), no interest rate increases, and that there is an “unexplained” spike of BILLIONS of “direct” purchases of these securities. Security sales thru brokers and to institutional investors are “indirect:” sales to the general public and foreign governments are “direct.” This is a red flag that something is not right! Who is actually buying these at arbitrarily low interest rates, and how are they paying for them when the reported outstanding money supply is actually decreasing? Should these anomalies be regarded as another warning sign?

An “improving” Real Estate market is presently being hyped, yet the number of foreclosed properties and those held/ owned by banks as OREOs (Other Real Estate Owned) continues to grow. Realty Trac which monitors these, just announced foreclosures doubled to 15,000 in Illinois alone at the end of the first quarter. This is a record high and should be taken as a sign of a worsening economy, not an improvement to it. Closer to home... four of the 22 homes on the market in Creston have sold in the past couple of weeks. This is great news. Then... over the weekend, the engine warning light on my PT Cruiser came on. I am headed to Krahenbuhl’s Monday afternoon to get it checked out. (Bah humbug!)

I’m Fred Cederholm and I’ve been thinking. You should be thinking, too.


Copyright 2009 Questions, Inc. All rights reserved. Fred Cederholm is a CPA/CFE, a forensic accountant, and writer. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois (B.A., M.A. and M.A.S.). He can be reached at asklet@rochelle.net.



Copyright © 2010 The Baltimore News Network. All rights reserved.

Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.

Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.

This story was published on April 19, 2010.

 

Public Service Ads: