Seeking Alpha

jerryrobinson's  Instablog

jerryrobinson
Send Message
Jerry Robinson is an economist, published author, columnist, international conference speaker, and the editor of the financial website, FTMDaily.com. In addition, Robinson hosts a weekly radio program entitled Follow the Money Weekly, an hour long radio show dedicated to deciphering the week's... More
My company:
Follow the Money Daily
My blog:
Follow the Money Daily
My book:
Bankruptcy of our Nation: Your Financial Survival Guide
  • China And Russia Relations Reach New Heights

    By Jerry Robinson, FTMDaily.com Editor-In-Chief

    With new Chinese President Xi Jinping's recent visit to the Kremlin, China and Russia relations are dramatically improving. Should the West be concerned?

    Meet Xi Jinping.

    On March 14, he became the official President of the People's Republic of China. The son of a communist veteran, Jinping has ridden the elevator to the top of the political food chain in China within a handful of years.

    Xi Jinping - The New Chinese President Last week, Jinping chose the city of Moscow as the destination for his first foreign visit as China's new leader. As he told a group of reporters gathered in Moscow, his selection of the Kremlin as his first official trip abroad is a "testimony to the great importance China places on its relations with Russia." Indeed, China and Russia, led by President Vladimir Putin, share a deeply strategic political and economic partnership. Their immediate goal is further economic integration and cooperation. Together, they compose a formidable foe against Washington's often imperialistic foreign policy. Both nations have publicly disagreed with the West's attempts to increase sanctions against Iran, Syria, and North Korea. The two countries have often stood together in defiance at the United Nations Security Council against measures they perceive to be part of a larger 'Western agenda.'

    The unfolding chaos in Syria has strained U.S.-Russia relations. The U.S. has accused Russia of propping up the Syrian dictator, Bashar al-Assad. Russia has countered by saying that the sole goal of the U.S. is regime change in Syria due to the current Syrian government's support of Iran. Russia's tone towards the U.S. has become increasingly hostile recently as Putin has objected to perpetual U.S. military occupation and interference in the Middle East.

    Russia and China have publicly stated that they will oppose any foreign intervention into North Korea regarding its much maligned nuclear weapons program. Both countries insist that any debate over military action against the rogue regime must take place the United Nations. As permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, both China and Russia have veto power.

    Much like Iran serves to maintain a check on Russia, many observers believe that Western noise over North Korea is designed to give the U.S. a leading role among the dialogue in the region.

    Despite mounting international pressure, Beijing is unlikely to completely abandon North Korea. While China has expressed support for U.N. sanctions on the rogue regime, don't expect China to stop its oil exports to North Korea.

    Before the globalists attempt to take out Iran, they will first succeed in removing Assad from his paper throne in Syria. They will seek to replace him with another pro-Western dictator who will brutally punish the inevitable rioting mobs. But the U.S. dream of successfully re-shaping the map of Eurasia will be interrupted by mounting military threats from both China and Russia.

    Russia and China: Allies by Necessity

    Putin, who is eager to develop deeper ties with China in order to gain access to the nation's growing markets, rolled out the red carpet for Jinping and his entourage, which included his wife, Peng Liyuan. (She is a popular musical artist and singing sensation in China.) As the couple entered the Grand Kremlin Palace, Russian guards on foot and horseback greeted China's new leader.

    "Our relations are characterized by a high degree of mutual trust, respect for each other's interests, and support in vital issues. They are a true partnership and are genuinely comprehensive," Putin told the official ITAR-Tass agency.

    Chinese ImperialismThe brief three day visit was filled with geopolitical significance and practicality. Before continuing on to Tanzania, the Congo, and South Africa, Jinping signed dozens of new agreements with the Russian President, mainly regarding energy arrangements. Each of these new oil and gas agreements will be outside of the domain of the U.S. dollar. China and Russia have already dropped the U.S. dollar in direct trade, ever so slowly edging out a bit more demand for the U.S. dollar.

    Energy plays an important role between the two nations. According to the Energy Information Administration (NYSEMKT:EIA), China will be importing 75 percent of its annual oil supplies by 2030. With Russia as the world's largest oil producing nation and China as the world's largest consumer of energy, the glue that holds the two countries is obvious. But currently, China only imports 8% of its crude oil from Russia. Natural gas supplies, however, made up the bulk of the deals signed by the two leaders last week. Russia seeks to lessen its dependence on European energy demand by increasing its exports to China.

    An increase in energy supplies from Russia would further tighten relations between the two countries while isolating their common enemy, the United States. China and Russia have been quite transparent in their aim of blunting America's growing influence in the region.

    Russia supplies China not only with energy, but with advanced military technology and strategic commodities. However, Russia has been cautious in this role, knowing China's taste for reverse engineering new technologies. Russia has long been concerned about China's large population creeping into its vast open spaces in the far eastern portions of the country, like Siberia. Both countries have publicly stated that the border that exists between them is firmly established and respected. However, Russia remains unsettled and suspicious in this regard.

    Russia's embrace of China, despite its lingering suspicions of the country's true intentions, is to be expected. Russia's relationship with the U.S. has been placed under immense strain over the last several years. As the U.S. continues to poke and prod in the affairs of the Middle East, Central Asia, and now its latest pivot to the South Pacific, Russia and China can find solace in their mutual strength against the U.S., which they both increasingly view as a common enemy.

    Russia's relations with the European Union, while still a priority, have also been damaged by Europe's ongoing economic crisis and Europe's unprecedented punitive measures against Russia's mafia banking interests in Cyprus.

    According to Alexei Pushkov, chairman of the State Duma's international affairs committee, many Russian officials have simply become disillusioned with the West. In an recent interview, he stated:

    "Countries like Russia and China look at the traditional power centers - the US and Europe - and see that these countries cannot provide answers. Everyone has the feeling that the old world order is finished. This cascade of events drives Russia and China further from reliance on the Euro-Atlantic world. After all, what kind of example do they provide if they just confiscate money from peoples' accounts?"

    Pushkov goes on to reveal what Western leaders already know:

    "Russia, China, the other BRICS countries, are looking for a new model…. It's not driven by some sort of anti-Western logic. There is a crisis of trust. There is a feeling that our countries are on their own. We don't have a point of reference anymore."

    And:

    "We look at Beijing, and we don't hear them lecturing us about human rights and how to conduct democracy. There is no missionary element on either side. But there is strong economic incentive. The Chinese economy is a factory, and we have the energy to power that factory. That's a pretty solid basis."

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

    Tags: economy
    Apr 02 3:18 PM | Link | Comment!
  • The Best Way To Buy Gold Is On The Dips

    There is an old saying that goes: "The best way to buy gold is on the dips."

    If this saying is true, then now is a good time to be buying gold.

    It has been no secret that the price of gold has been hit hard in recent weeks. Just take a look at this chart below.

    (click to enlarge)

    As you can see, gold prices practically fell off a cliff in the first week of February. There are a variety of reasons why gold prices have recently been falling. These include debatable signs of improvement in the U.S. economy as well as the conflicting messages pouring out of the Federal Reserve regarding the future of their massive money printing campaign.

    And while a recent technical chart of gold looks negative, the fundamentals remain strong for gold and the long term uptrend in gold is still firmly intact.

    Just check out this chart of gold's monster rally over the last 12 years... (FYI: Look how small the recent dip appears in a 12 year context.)

    (click to enlarge)

    The best way to buy gold is on the dips.

    Unless you have faith in the government's ability to suddenly discover a non-violent path out of its mounting debt problems, their entitlement crises, and their outrageous healthcare costs related to their aging populations then buying gold is a no-brainer when it dips in price. I have been buying gold for years and am viewing this most recent pull back in gold prices like every other pullback: As a great buying opportunity.

    Global demand for gold set a new record high of $236.4 billion in 2012, according to a recent report released by the World Gold Council. And the fourth quarter of 2012 witnessed a record-breaking $66.2 billion of gold demand. Much of this demand came from central banks within emerging nations. In fact, in 2012, central bank demand for gold reached it highest point since 1964. (Think Russia, India, and China.) According to one recent report, Russia added 3.2 million ounces of gold to their reserves in 2012 alone.

    This website is called Follow the Money Daily because I believe that the best way to invest is by watching the investment moves of major institutional investors, sovereign wealth funds, and central banks. And based upon my understanding of the global economy, I am extremely bullish on precious metals in the coming months and years. But personally, I would never put more than 25% of my investment funds into any single asset class, including precious metals.

    I got started as a precious metals investor by laying a foundation of physical gold and silver. Once I had some physical gold and silver (coins and bars) in my possession, I then began turning to ETF's and mining stocks for more speculative investing.

    If you do not currently own any physical gold or silver, I would strongly recommend that you investigate this possibility. This recent pullback in gold and silver prices has put these two precious metals "on sale."

    INVESTORS TIP...
    If you are new to precious metals investing, or are just interested in learning more about how to invest in gold and silver, I recommend that you check out this free online precious metals investing tutorial. This tutorial will explain the basics of precious metals investing and will explain why it is smart to have at least a small portion of your nest egg in physical precious metals. Also, you can listen to our weekly precious metals market update every week on our podcast and receive our free precious metals email alerts.

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

    Additional disclosure: I am long gold and silver.

    Apr 01 1:11 PM | Link | Comment!
  • Now The CIA Wants Unlimited Access To Your Financial Records

    by Jerry Robinson

    Apparently, the Federal government is intent on continuing its never-ending war on your right to privacy.

    According to a new plan unveiled by the U.S. Treasury Department, the Obama administration is now seeking authorization to provide all U.S. spy agencies with unlimited access to a massive database containing financial data on virtually every American citizen who uses the banking system.

    Access to this sensitive financial data has been available to the Federal Bureau of Investigation since the tragic events of 9/11 (thanks to the "freedom-loving" President George W. Bush.)

    The CIA Wants Unlimited Access To Your Financial RecordsNow, the Obama administration wants to provide access to this vast database with even more U.S. intelligence agencies, including the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency.

    What reason has been given for the new invasive powers by the CIA and the NSA?

    Terrorism, of course.

    In essence, the Feds believe they can more effectively identify terrorist networks and other elements of organized crime only if they are given complete and total access to more of America's banking transactions. The power elites in Washington are convinced that Americans must be willing to give up some of their freedoms and liberties in order to ensure our continued security.

    Now the CIA Wants Unlimited Access To Your Financial RecordsWhile the latest attack upon the financial privacy of Americans has many privacy advocates up in arms, there are much deeper concerns than those that appear on the surface.

    If an American engages in an innocent pattern of financial transactions that suddenly becomes labeled by the Federal government as "terrorist financing" or as other behavior that is "criminal" in nature, it could lead to numerous false accusations. Given the vast powers granted to the Federal government through the National Defense Authorization Act, the ramifications could prove to be Orwellian.

    This push for further integration at the Federal government level in our post-9/11 should be concerning to every American. Put simply, the closer that government entities align themselves, and the more data-sharing that they engage in, the more abusive their collective power becomes. This power can be wielded over a wary American population.

    It should quite obvious to everyone why the CIA wants access to the intimate banking details of millions of Americans. It is already well documented that active duty operatives from the CIA are legally permitted to peddle their vast expertise to corporate America for a fee. Financial institutions, hedge funds, and private equity firms have been exploiting the CIA's knowledge for years to gain a competitive edge in the world of high finance and corporate espionage.

    So, in addition to the extreme immunity that the nation's top financial firms are given by Washington, despite their criminal acts against the American people (think JP Morgan, MF Global, etc), the banksters will now be able to gain access to a vast amount of financial data on every American citizen through their buddies in the CIA.

    Considering the immense corporate power (cash) that controls our nation's policymakers, it is not hard to imagine that the new mountains of financial data secured for the CIA and other intelligence agencies will quickly end up in the hands of corporate America's most powerful players. It can then be used against the American population in a variety of ways.

    Add to this new report the old news of the intrusive actions of the TSA, the overreach of the Executive Branch, and the judicial activism of our nation's courts and you have a recipe for tyranny.

    Sadly, as the Federal government continues its tyrannical power grab, the American people appear increasingly complacent.

    At least we are safe from those evil "terrorists." Right?

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

    Apr 01 1:07 PM | Link | Comment!
Full index of posts »
Latest Followers
Posts by Themes
Instablogs are Seeking Alpha's free blogging platform customized for finance, with instant set up and exposure to millions of readers interested in the financial markets. Publish your own instablog in minutes.