Let's Get Honest! Blog: Absolutely Uncommon Analysis of Family & Conciliation Courts' Operations, Practices, & History

'A Different Kind of Attention Develops Sound Judgment' | 'Suppose I'm Right Here?…' (posted 3/23 & 3/5/2014). Over 680 posts, Public-Interest Investigative Blogging On These Matters Since 2009.

Pathways to Responsible (Patriotism) and other Grants

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And other Rumplestiltskin Stuff.

This is real appropriate behavior for when the sky is falling.  The sky IS falling, right?  Can Father Fed Fix it?

What kind of SPIN can be put on it?

Read the situation, and then I’ll show you the Rumplestiltskin Spin Spending I’m referring to:

Stock Market Meltdown: 10 Tools To Help Survive the Plunge

(from Soundcloud.com,; Yorgo Nestoridis)

The U.S. stock market today continues to plunge in the wake of the S&P’s downgrade of the U.S. credit rating.Many investors — big and small — are reacting to the news by rushing to sell-off positions. All three major U.S. stock indexes are down between 5% and 6%, which has pushed the Dow down 500 points.

Lemming Exodus

(Lemmings falling into the sea of knowledge….)

We can’t offer you any investment advice, but we can point out 10 mobile apps, iPad apps and websites that should make tracking investments and the state of the market less complicated.

Yeah – we can’t slow it, but we can give you an electronic ringside seat…

  • Asian stock markets fall after US credit downgrade

    ANGKOK (AP) — Asian stocks fell Monday after the historic downgrade of the U.S. credit rating but losses were contained amid a promise by Group of Seven industrial nations to take all necessary measures to support financial stability.

Oil prices extended recent sharp losses, trading below $85 a barrel on expectations that slowing global economic growth will crimp demand for crude.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock average was down 1.3 percent at 9,178.30 and Seoul’s Kospi dropped 1.6 percent to 1,913.58.

Steep Grade – Downgrade

(“RTL:   giving you the right direction“)

By 
NYTimes:   Published: August 7, 2011

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng tumbled 2.6 percent to 20,409.01 while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 pared its initial sell-off to be down 1 percent at 4,062.70.

Futures pointed to losses on Wall Street when it opens Monday. Dow futures were off 225 points, or 2 percent, at 11,177 and broader S&P 500 futures shed 23.6, or 2 percent, to 1,174.20.

(or, see “Homer:  “The scream”)
  • Ohio Gov. John Kasich said this week’s slide on the stock market “borders on alarming.”
  • Kasich, a Republican and former Wall Street banker, told reporters on Thursday that he’s concerned about the sell-off and that it reflects a lack of confidence by consumers and businesses.
  • Stocks plunged Thursday in their single worst day since the 2008 financial crisis. The Dow Jones industrial average tumbled 512 points — its ninth-deepest point drop ever — as fear about the global economy spooked investors. Thursday marked the market’s worst day since the financial crisis nearly three years ago and has given up all of this year’s gains.
  • Multiple media outlets quote Kasich as saying that businesses don’t feel comfortable investing and are sitting on cash. Kasich said things won’t get moving until businesses invest, which includes hiring workers.
  • “The conventional wisdom on Wall Street was that the economy was growing — that the worst was behind us,” said Peter Schiff, president of Euro Pacific Capital, to CNN. “Now what people are realizing is the stimulus didn’t work, and we may be headed back to recession.
  • U.S. markets were already sharply lower on widespread worries, including the weak job market. The S&P 500 was down a staggering 60 points, or 4.8 percent.The Nasdaq lost 136 points, or 5.1 percent.
  • Fears about a global slowdown are at the forefront of investors’ minds amid recent weak economic data. There’s “total fear” in the market, said Bob Doll, chief equity strategist at the world’s largest money manager, BlackRock.
  • In moves that they hoped would tame financial markets, Japan’s government stepped in to weaken the yen, and the European Central Bank decided to re-enter the European bond market for the first time since March. Those decisions come just a day after Switzerland intervened to curb the Swiss franc’s rise.
  • Copyright 2011 by wtov9.com. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
and in the UK:


  • Global stock markets have extended their heavy losses as concerns escalate about the debt problems facing the US and the eurozone.
  • On Wall Street, the Dow index fell 2.5% as investors worried those problems could hit the global economic recovery.
  • The UK’s FTSE ended down 3.4% to 5,069, its lowest close since July 2010.
  • But yields on Spanish and Italian bonds fell sharply after the European Central Bank (ECB) intervened to try to stop the eurozone debt crisis spreading.
  • Bonds are essentially IOUs issued by governments, or companies, to raise cash. Governments issue new bonds to help pay maturing bonds, which is why it is so important that investors continue to buy them – if they do not, governments are unable to pay their outstanding debts.

yes, Bonds are virtually spun gold.  More on that in a minute….

For example:

California Communities Joint Powers Authority (interesting:)

Overview

California Communities® can assist 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations by providing access to low-cost, tax-exempt bonds (“Bonds”) to finance or refinance the acquisition, construction, installation, expansion or rehabilitation of land, buildings, and equipment. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization can finance projects at a lower interest rate than conventional financing because the interest paid to bondholders is exempt from federal (and in some instances state) income taxes.

California Communities® has issued over $24.7 billion in qualified 501(c)(3) bonds for more than 250 nonprofit organizations throughout California, including hospitals and medical centers, private educational institutions, student housing facilities, multifamily housing facilities, museums, cultural centers, and assisted living facilities to name a few.

In addition to its traditional 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Conduit Bond Program, California Communities® offers a Small Issue Public Benefit Program designed to cost-effectively assist projects ranging from $1 million to $7 million. California Communities® will work directly with the borrower to privately place the Bonds with qualified institutional buyers. The advantages of the Small Issue Program include low-cost access to tax-exempt markets, a pre-established finance team and a fixed interest rate.

There’s a nice brochure; here’s description:  “A Unique Asset for Local Government”

The California Statewide Communities Development Authority (California Communities®) was created in 1988, under California’s Joint Exercise of Powers Act, to provide California’s local governments with an effective tool for the timely financing of community-based public benefit projects.

Although cities, counties and special districts are able to issue their own debt obligations or serve as a conduit issuer of private activity bonds that promote economic development and provide critical community services, many local agencies find stand-alone financings too costly or lack the necessary resources or experience to facilitate the bond issuance and perform post-issuance activities for the term of the bonds. In response, California Communities was created by and for local governments in California, and is sponsored by the California State Association of Counties and the League of California Cities.

Currently, more than 500 cities, counties and special districts have become Program Participants to California Communities – which serves as their conduit issuer and provides access to an efficient mechanism to finance locally-approved projects.

California Communities® is a statewide issuing authority that derives its issuing powers from city, county, special district members known as Program Participants. Any city, county or special district is eligible to become a Program Participant Amended and Restated Joint Exercise of Powers Agreement (the “JPA Agreement”).
Please click on the following links to view the Program Participants, to view Signed JPA Agreements, to review Participant Activity Reports, and to conduct detailed searches of California Communities® Projects:
Cities 358
Counties 56
Districts 69
Agencies 17
City & County 1
SCIP Cities & Counties 30
All 501

I’m just putting this in here, because it’s something people may not think about too often.  The Joint Powers Authority means they can get together and raise money for various major projects; these links let you view them.

  • The ECB’s announcement that it intended to buy up government bonds saw the yield on Spanish 10-year bonds fall from more than 6% to about 5.2% – an indication that investors think it is less risky to lend Spain money. Yields on Italian bonds fell by a similar amount.
  • Tobias Blattner, a former economist at the ECB, said the central bank’s intervention had done little to help the crisis of confidence gripping the share markets.

Speaking of “Spin,” the topic brings us to RUMPLESTILTSKIN, which seems an appropriate tale for these times:  From Wikipedia:

In order to make himself appear more important, a miller lied and said that his daughter could spin straw into gold.

I wonder what tales were spun around the time the Federal Reserve got a hold of Americans’ gold.. and then when they wanted it back, spun a tale about “hoarding it”…  (I looked it up, the “anticorruption society” link came up, reminding us that the Federal Reserve is a Criminal Cartel.

(This site has a timeline)

“On May 23, 1933, Congressman, Louis T. McFadden, brought formal charges against the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve Bank system, The Comptroller of the Currency and the Secretary of United States Treasury for numerous criminal acts, including but not limited to, CONSPIRACY, FRAUD, UNLAWFUL CONVERSION, AND TREASON 

The petition for Articles of Impeachment was thereafter referred to the Judiciary Committee and has YET TO BE ACTED ON.

(excerpts):  

Excerpts:
pg 2
“Some people who think that the Federal Reserve Banks United States Government institutions. They are private monopolies which prey upon the people of these United States for the benefit of themselves and their foreign customers; foreign and domestic speculators and swindlers; and rich and predatory money lender. In that dark crew of financial pirates there are those who would cut a man’s throat to get a dollar out of his pocket; there are those who send money into states to buy votes to control our legislatures; there are those who maintain International propaganda for the purpose of deceiving us into granting of new concessions which will permit them to cover up their past misdeeds and set again in motion their gigantic train of crime.”
pg 6
“The United States has been ransacked and pillaged. Our structures have been gutted and only the walls are left standing. While being perpetrated, everything the world would rake up to sell us was brought in here at our expense by the Fed until our markets were swamped with unneeded and unwanted imported goods priced far above their value and make to equal the dollar volume of our honest exports, and to kill or reduce our favorite balance of trade. As Agents of the foreign central banks the Fed try by every means in their power to reduce our favorable balance of trade. They act for their foreign principal and they accept fees from foreigners for acting against the best interests of these United States.”
and, after describing some of their activities, including wars

The Bankers Manifesto of 1892

Revealed by US Congressman Charles A. Lindbergh, Sr. from Minnesota before the US Congress sometime during his term of office between the years of 1907 and 1917 to warn the citizens.

“We (the bankers) must proceed with caution and guard every move made, for the lower order of people are already showing signs of restless commotion. Prudence will therefore show a policy of apparently yielding to the popular will until our plans are so far consummated that we can declare our designs without fear of any organized resistance. The Farmers Alliance and Knights of Labor organizations in the United States should be carefully watched by our trusted men, and we must take immediate steps to control these organizations in our interest or disrupt them.

At the coming Omaha Convention to be held July 4th (1892), our men must attend and direct its movement, or else there will be set on foot such antagonism to our designs as may require force to overcome. This at the present time would be premature. We are not yet ready for such a crisis. Capital must protect itself in every possible manner through combination ( conspiracy) and legislation.The courts must be called to our aid, debts must be collected, bonds and mortgages foreclosed as rapidly as possible.

When through the process of the law, the common people have lost their homes, they will be more tractable and easily governed through the influence of the strong arm of the government applied to a central power of imperial wealth under the control of the leading financiers. People without homes will not quarrel with their leaders.

 

That was from 1892!

  

History repeats itself in regular cycles. This truth is well known among our principal men who are engaged in forming an imperialism of the world. While they are doing this, the people must be kept in a state of political antagonism.    

The question of tariff reform must be urged through the organization known as the Democratic Party, and the question of protection with the reciprocity must be forced to view through the Republican Party.     By thus dividing voters, we can get them to expand their energies in fighting over questions of no importance to us, except as teachers to the common herd. Thus, by discrete action, we can secure all that has been so generously planned and successfully accomplished.” 

If there is one thing I have come to understand in doing this blog (and looking up family law organizations and funders) it is that the policymakers (though not themselves the “imperialists” referred above) do indeed regard the masses — with whom they often have little direct connection, and if they do, not from having personally experienced what (we) have — for example, the DV experts are not necessarily DV survivors; the low-income-fatherhood specialists are not frequently from low-income households themselves, meaning those who started the movement.  And I will guarantee you the conference crowd (judicial, mediator, attorney, psychologist, child support professionals, etc.) — are not the grassroots representatives of the interests of those they coach, counsel, order, deprive of contact with their children, and sometimes imprison.  Overall, it’s clear that there is a class of appointed (many times, SELF-appointed) teachers — and there are the hordes to be trained and intervened upon….  The “common herd.”   
I thought this might be amusing, if not a good question:

In lean times, why is $300 billion worth of government treasure simply sitting in vaults?

By James Picerno
The Atlantic
October 14, 2010

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York, a neo-Florentine fortress of sandstone and limestone in Lower Manhattan, covers a city block. A battery of structural and technological defenses makes it perhaps the world’s most secure bank; it can be sealed off in less than 25 seconds. On a recent visit to its subterranean vault, beneath 80 feet of bedrock, I walked along a narrow passageway through a 90-ton steel cylinder that can create an airtight and watertight seal. On the other side was a vault with neatly stacked walls of 27-pound yellow bricks—one of the largest collections of gold in the world.

Standing next to this mass of concentrated wealth all but paralyzes one’s sense of financial proportion. But after the initial awe of this King Midas moment, a question nagged: what’s the point?

Nearly 40 years after President Nixon suspended the dollar’s link to gold, the United States still sits on far more of it than any other nation: official holdings total 8,965 tons, or roughly 260 million troy ounces, according to the Treasury Department. (Most of it is stored in Fort Knox, Kentucky; the New York Fed holds about 11 million troy ounces, along with gold reserves from other countries and international organizations.) Gold is easily convertible into cash, and America’s mountain of metal is now worth more than ever: assuming the recent market price of $1,200 a troy ounce, the value of the federal stock exceeds $300 billion. Yet in an age of soaring deficits, our gold reserves earn no income, incur huge storage and security costs, and serve no practical purpose, short of a politically unthinkable renaissance of gold-based money (see “The Tea Party’s Brain,” page 98). Why?

Getting straight answers (or any answers at all) from Washington about our hoard of gold is weirdly difficult. Yes, the government can downsize its holdings, said Congressman Brad Sherman, a member of the Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology, through a spokesman. No, it’s not a good idea, he added, offering no elaboration. When I called to interview the subcommittee’s chairman, Representative Mel Watt, his office begged off in an e-mail, advising only that he “hadn’t studied this particular issue as of yet.”

Repeated calls and e-mails to the White House press office went unanswered. The Treasury Department referred me to the section on gold in the U.S. Code. When I pressed for more information, a public-affairs official e-mailed back: “Gold? Don’t you have anything better to write about[?]”

“I don’t think that any change in the gold policy is even on the screen,” said Dale Henderson, a visiting professor of economics at Georgetown University. “It’s a bit of a mystery to me.” As a research economist at the Federal Reserve, Henderson co-authored a study in 1997 called “Can Government Gold Be Put to Better Use?” Yes, the paper concluded: selling or loaning out some or all of the reserves is preferable to doing nothing. “It’s an opportunity cost for the government,” Henderson told me. “The country has this gold and is borrowing to finance its activities. If we’re trying to maximize the return on the country’s assets, then we should borrow a little less and sell some of the gold.”

(from….the)

IS Gold Money?  Ron Paul asks Ben Bernanke (July 14, 2011).  According to this post (with youtub), Bernanke is saying, not really.  That, I’d like to see.

Let’s go over tidbits of this 1933 action, again.  Becauase 2033 isn’t that far away — just one more generation of family court disasters.  There’s Gold, Gold Certificates, and then Federal Reserve Notes, which eventually were degraded as to what they even represented (see Money:  Bona Fide or Non Bona Fide)

FDR’s 1933 Gold Confiscation was a Bailout of the Federal Reserve Bank
moonlightmint ^ | moonlightmint 

Posted on March 2, 2011 3:15:56 PM PST by dennisw

T(Excerpt) Read more at moonlightmint.com …ACTUALLY, it’s so well (plain) written, here’s a large excerpt:

PAPER REPLACES SPECIE

 During the 1800s, paper money was suspect in the eyes of many. Nobody would ever choose a government-issue $20 note over a $20 gold coin. Gradually during the late 1800s and early 1900s, confidence in government paper money increased to the point where it was widely accepted. People accepted the money because they felt confident they could exchange it at the US Treasury or any Federal Reserve Bank for gold at any time – it even said so on the notes. {THAT WAS GOING TO CHANGE…}}   Without the gold exchange clauses printed directly on the notes, the public would have been much less likely to accept them. Silver Certificates and United States Notes circulated alongside Gold Certificates, which were legally interchangeable dollar-for-dollar.

THE “FED” AND EASY MONEY

In 1913 the Federal Reserve Bank was established and it began issuing Federal Reserve Notes the following year.

Once free of the restrictions imposed by the limitations of available physical gold for coinage, the quantity of Dollars in circulation increased dramatically. The increase was mostly in the form of paper money, not specie.

The result was an economic “boom”, also known as “The Roaring Twenties” (1923-1929). But like all artificially-induced stimulus, it came to a crash in the fall of 1929. The burden of over-extended credit was the culprit. Prior to the formation of the Federal Reserve, money in circulation consisted of copper, silver, and gold coins, United States Notes, Silver Certificates, and Gold Certificates. All of these were non-interest-bearing, were issued directly by the US Treasury, and did not have any debt associated with their issuance.

PLEASE DO REVIEW A LITTLE MORE OF THIS. . . ..  AND TAKE A LOOK AT THE EARLIER NOTES, which actually DID say “redeemable in gold on demand.”

This is a typical gold-exchange clause found on Gold Certificates issued by the US Treasury from about 1905 to 1922.

And the clause on series 1928 US Treasury Gold Certificates looked like this:

(etc.)  The, the BAILOUT.

HE BAILOUT

So along comes FDR. One of the very first things he did was issue an executive order basically outlawing the private ownership of gold bullion. US Treasury Gold Certificates were no longer legal tender when held by the general public, unless exchanged at the US Treasury or Federal Reserve Bank for other non-gold paper. The US Treasury could then transfer 6,000 metric tons of gold to the Federal Reserve as a token backing for the “full faith and credit of the United States”. Reportedly, the US Treasury sent gold certificates to the Federal Reserve in exchange for Federal Reserve NotesSo the net result of this exchange was that the privately-controlled Federal Reserve Bank held US Treasury Gold Certificates backed by US Treasury gold, while the US Treasury held Federal Reserve Notes backed by “credit”.

These actions bailed out the privately-controlled Federal Reserve bank, which as of 1933 would no longer be in danger of collapsing due to a sort-fall of 20,000 or more metric tons of gold.

As citizens complied with the new ”law” by turning in gold, the gold reserves of the US Treasury and Federal Reserve increased.After most of the public’s gold was turned in, FDR raised the official price from $20.67 to $35.00 per troy ounce.

Basically, a form of stealing.  Increase the price of what it just got — from “we, the people.”

How “convenient”. Gold-clause Federal Reserve notes were not recalled and remained in circulation. But they could no longer be exchanged for gold, except by certain foreign central banks. Those with connections were able to buy valuable assets with mere paper. Wealth was concentrated in fewer hands.

SO, ANYHOW, the MILLER SAID HIS DAUGHTER COULD SPIN GOLD.  NOW she’s in trouble!

The king heard of this and called for the girl, shut her in a tower room with straw and a spinning wheel, and demanded that she spin the straw into gold by morning, for three nights, or be executed. She had given up all hope, when an impish creature appeared in the room and spun straw into gold for her in return for her necklace, then again the following night for her ring. On the third night, when she had nothing with which to reward him, the strange creature spun straw into gold for a promise that the girl’s first-born child would become his.

The king was so impressed that he married the miller’s daughter, but when their first child was born, the imp returned to claim his payment: “Now give me what you promised”. The queen was frightened and offered him all the wealth she had if she could keep the child. The imp refused but finally agreed to give up his claim to the child if the queen could guess his name in three days. At first she failed, but before the final night, her messenger discovered the imp’s remote mountain cottage and, unseen, overheard the imp hopping about his fire and singing. While there are many variations in this song, the 1886 translation by Lucy Crane reads:

To-day do I bake, to-morrow I brew,
The day after that the queen’s child comes in;
And oh! I am glad that nobody knew
That the name I am called is Rumpelstiltskin!”[1]

Well and so forth.  I’ve been overhearing about how our government, so broke, can still spin a good yarn, and perhaps they are counting on MY daughters to come up with the gold, when the bill comes due.  This just out (at least I just heard of it):  Plenty more money for fatherhood, depending on how you define “Money.”

I have “no idea” why there would be a crisis of confidence.  SOMEONE seems confident, given the increased debt and reduced social services, the cutbacks of the courts, etc. — that there will be a resurgence of family spirit and reduction of poverty if only there were just “a few good men” around.

Good men, any more, are not found — they are produced, apparently, by the Department of Health and Human Services.  I know they’ll figure this out eventually. . . Right?

 

 

This just in from, well, a friend sent it by.  Grantwriter’s blog, self-amusatory.  Sounds like whoever came up with the grants wasn’t too interested in a lot of competitors for them.

Grant Writing Confidential header image 2

 

 

 

Office of Family Assistance Issues the “Pathways to Responsible Fatherhood Grants Program” FOA, Provides a Generous 30-Day Deadline, and Makes Mothers Eligible

July 1st, 2011 · by Isaac Seliger · 7 Comments

The Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Family Assistance* just issued a Funding Opportunity Announcement (DHHS-speak for RFP) with tens of millions of dollars available and no matching requirement for the Pathways to Responsible Fatherhood Grants program. This new program was apparently hidden in plain sight in a somewhat obscure piece of federal legislation named the Claims Resolution Act of 2010. In addition to resolving the wonderfully named Pigford II settlement (I am not making this up, and no, I am not going to Google Pigford II or its presumable predecessor, Pigford I), this legislation also created and funded the Fatherhood program and at least two more new competitive grant programs: the Community-Centered Healthy Marriage and Relationship (CCHMR) Grants Program and the Community-Centered Responsible Fatherhood Ex-Prisoner Reentry Pilot Project.

 

 

There is $52,00,000 available for the Fatherhood program and $57,000,000 for the Marriage program, while the ex-prisoner dads get a comparatively paltry $6,000,000. Even better, none require matching funds, which is so unusual that the fact is worth mentioning twice. It’s open season if your agency is interested in new service delivery programs, and which agency isn’t?

 

The only bad news is the deadline: all three were published on June 29, with July 28 deadlines. OFA is giving applicants exactly 30 days (including the Fourth of July, which is a family holiday) to write complex responses to new programs. Last year, I blogged about stupid deadlines. The only good news about a deadline like this: there will likely be fewer than usual applications due to the combination of the long holiday weekend, summer vacations, and the struggles inherent in new FOAs and regulations.

Tireless OFA workers did not forget to include a bit of unintentional humor in the Fathers FOA, which, despite its name, says that “programs funded under this FOA must offer services on an equal basis to fathers and mothers.” I guess it could have been called the Responsible Parenting Program, but where’s the fun in that? Perhaps the Prisoners grants must be provided on an equal basis for non-prisoners. There is also the minor problem of whether all marriages—if you know what I mean, and I thinkyou do—can be assisted through marriage grant activities. If we get hired to write this proposal, I will let readers know how I dance around this potential minefield.

 

 

Written by Let's Get Honest

August 10, 2011 at 8:27 pm

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martinplaut

Journalist specialising in the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa

Let's Get Honest! Blog: Absolutely Uncommon Analysis of Family & Conciliation Courts' Operations, Practices, & History

'A Different Kind of Attention Develops Sound Judgment' | 'Suppose I'm Right Here?...' (posted 3/23 & 3/5/2014). Over 680 posts, Public-Interest Investigative Blogging On These Matters Since 2009.

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