And a few things coming out of the black box now seem to suggest that things are not as hunky dory as they are being made out to be. The loans given by banks and other financial institutions have reached very high levels. As Chancellor and Monnelly point out in their research paper “Between 2007 and 2012, the ratio of credit(i.e. loans) to GDP climbed to more than 190 percent, an increase of 60 percentage points.
China’s recent expansion of credit relative to GDP is considerably larger than the credit booms experienced by either Japan in the late 1980s or the United States in the years before the Lehman bust.” As of the end of 2012, the total lending by banks and other financial institutions as a proportion of the GDP ratio stood at 198 percent.Sponsored Ads
So while there might be many out there who would like to believe that all is well in China, the evidence is clearly to the contrary. Chu of Fitch put it best when she told Bloomberg “You just don’t see that magnitude of increase in the ratio of credit to GDP…It’s usually one of the most reliable predictors for a financial crisis.”
There are “clear signs” that terrorist networks first established by Iran in several South American countries in the 1980s and 1990s are still in place, and there are indications that Iran has similar networks in Europe, the Argentinian prosecutor who investigated the 1994 AMIA bombing in Buenos Aires told The Times of Israel.
In a telephone interview a week after he issued a 500-page report on the bombing and Iran’s wider terrorist infiltration of South America, Alberto Nisman said that Tehran had established its terror networks for the strategic long term, ready to be used “whenever it needs them.”
Last Wednesday, Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman accused Iran of “infiltrating” South America and establishing intelligence networks aimed at carrying out more terrorist attacks in the region. Nisman said the effort has been ongoing since the 1980s in Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, Guyana, Surinam and Trinidad and Tobago. “These are sleeper cells,” he explained. ”They have activities you wouldn’t imagine. Sometimes they die having never received the order to attack.”
At ISIS, we have assessed for some time that North Korea likely has the capability to mount a plutonium-based nuclear warhead on the shorter range Nodong missile, which has a range of about 800 miles, and that Pyongyang still lacks the ability to deploy a warhead on an ICBM, although it shows progress at this effort. North Korea would need to conduct missile flight tests with a re-entry vehicle and mock warhead, increase the explosive yield of the warhead (possibly requiring its further miniaturization), and improve the operational reliability of the warhead and missile.
One reason that North Korea can likely miniaturize its warheads by now has to do with the sheer duration of its nuclear weapons program. North Korea’s weaponization work can be traced back to the 1980s.
In those early years, China may have provided assistance in terms of nuclear weapons data and designs. Until the mid-to-late 1980s, China was not opposed to nuclear proliferation. In the early 1980s, it provided Pakistan with 50 kilograms of weapons-grade uranium and a nuclear warhead design.
The Government Lied When It Said It Only Bailed Out Healthy Banks … 12 of the 13 Big Banks Were Going BustWe noted in 2011 that the Geithner, Bernanke and Paulson lied about the health of the big banks in pitching bailouts to Congress and the American people:
The big banks were all insolvent during the 1980s.
The bailouts were certainly rammed down our throats under false pretenses.
But here’s the more important point. Paulson and Bernanke falsely stated that the big banks receiving Tarp money were healthy, when they were not. They were insolvent.
Tim Geithner falsely stated that the banks passed some time of an objective stress test but they did not. They were insolvent.
[All of the big banks were] insolvent in the 1980s, but the government made a concerted decision to cover that up.
“I’ve found that credit losses could peak at a level of $3.6 trillion for U.S. institutions, half of them by banks and broker dealers,” Roubini said at a conference in Dubai today. “If that’s true, it means the U.S. banking system is effectively insolvent because it starts with a capital of $1.4 trillion.”
“The problems of Citi, Bank of America and others suggest the system is bankrupt,” Roubini said. “In Europe, it’s the same thing.”
We noted earlier this year:
In a note to clients today, Societe Generale’s cross-asset strategists warn that given the high rates of youth unemployment, euro-area governments still face very real threats to stability:
Social unrest still a concern…
Economic crisis in developed countries have reinforced unemployment, especially with the youth. In 2013 southern economies plagued with large unemployment will remain in a recession marked by a lack of consumer confidence and greater poverty. With lower population support, large upheavals could threaten government stability. Greek finance minister recently said that Athens still faces “the possible risk” of exiting the single currency if political unrest blocks reforms. Social unrest is also looming in many emerging markets, where income inequality has increased or remained high since the 1980s. Distribution inequalities and corruption are among the main concerns of the Chinese population according to recent surveys.
It seems likely that this has the potential to re-emerge as a big story on the eurozone front in 2013.
Post-Christian Europe became noticeably more Islamized during 2012.
As the rapidly growing Muslim population makes its presence felt in towns and cities across the continent, Islam is transforming the European way of life in ways unimaginable only a few years ago.
Some of the more notable Islam-related controversies during 2012 occurred in Germany, where the Muslim population has jumped from around 50,000 in the early 1980s to more than 4.5 million today.
What follows is a brief chronological review of some of the main stories involving the rise of Islam in Germany during 2012.
Today I took a little shopping trip to Konstanz, Germany. It’s not too far from where I live in Switzerland. I like to go to EDEKA Center for grocery shopping. Check out what I saw just down the street from EDEKA Center:
I had never actually seen a Mosque before in real life. Yet, there it was right down the street. It was like Sauron from the kingdom of Mordor was staring down at me. I felt this wave of evil upon my body for a second. I am pretty aggressively hostile to Islam and in particular Allah. Unfortunately, Islam is growing and Christianity seems to be substantially undermined.
When you believe in nothing, then you will believe in anything. This means that when you believe in nothing, then you are susceptible to things that come along in your life. You become vulnerable to aggressive religions like Islam without really understanding.
Resurgence from Mordor
From this time on, Sauron became known as the Dark Lord of Mordor. Sauron fortified Mordor and completed the Dark Tower of Barad-dûr, already centuries in the building. He distributed the remaining rings of the Seven and the Nine to lords of Dwarves and Men. Dwarves proved too resilient to bend to his will, but the Men were enslaved by Sauron as the Nazgûl, his most feared servants. Well aware of the strength of the Númenóreans after his earlier defeat, Sauron withdrew from the coasts and for a long time avoided directly challenging them, although he managed to use some of the Nine rings to snare three of their great lords.
Sauron regained control over most of the creatures that had served Morgoth in the First Age (such as Orcs and Trolls). Sauron also gained power over most of the Men in the East and the South, becoming their god-king.
Toward the end of the Second Age, as the Númenóreans withdrew from the coasts after their people were divided by strife over the fear of death, Sauron began assailing their Middle-earth strongholds and assumed the titles of Lord of the Earth and King of Men.
The Diesel-Electric Submarine Threat
To put it simply, if naval exercises in the last two decades involving foreign diesel-electric submarines had been actual combat, most if not all, U.S. aircraft carriers would be at the bottom of the ocean: as many as 10 U.S. aircraft carriers have been reported “sunk” in these exercises.
The Mine Threat
Diesel-electric submarines are not the U.S. Navy’s only undersea problem: in the post-World War II-era 19 of its ships have been sunk or seriously damaged, 15 of them by sea mines.
The Air Threat
The first evaluation I was given when I joined the Government Accountability Office in the late 1980s focused on the performance of the Aegis air-defense system against anti-ship cruise missiles. We found that in highly-unrealistic, that is to say obliging, tests, Aegis generally performed at a mediocre level against its own criteria.
While nuclear war isn’t a problem of the past, its creative influence within the 1980s was hard to ignore in comparison to the 21st century, and with some of the world’s best-known and most relatable artists having shared their opinions on the issue, we’ve put together a list of the best doomsday classics from the decade.
THE NEW AND OLD ECONOMIC ORDER
In the decade to come, the United States, Europe, and Japan are likely to grow slowly. Their sluggishness, however, will look less worrisome compared with the even bigger story in the global economy, which will be the three to four percent slowdown in China, which is already under way, with a possibly deeper slowdown in store as the economy continues to mature. China’s population is simply too big and aging too quickly for its economy to continue growing as rapidly as it has. With over 50 percent of its people now living in cities, China is nearing what economists call “the Lewis turning point”: the point at which a country’s surplus labor from rural areas has been largely exhausted. This is the result of both heavy migration to cities over the past two decades and the shrinking work force that the one-child policy has produced. In due time, the sense of many Americans today that Asian juggernauts are swiftly overtaking the U.S. economy will be remembered as one of the country’s periodic bouts of paranoia, akin to the hype that accompanied Japan’s ascent in the 1980s.