Rents Plunge in the Most Expensive US Cities

But many mid-tier markets are red-hot. In San Francisco, the most expensive major rental market in the US, the median asking rent in November for one-bedroom apartments, at $3,390, is up 1.8% year-over-year, but is down 7.6% from the peak in October 2015. The median asking rent for two-bedroom apartments, at $4,380, rose 2.7% year-over-year, but is down 12.4% from the peak in October 2015.
In New York City, the median asking rent for one-bedroom apartments dropped 3.3% year-over-year to $2,900. For two-bedrooms, it dropped 1.2% to $3,360. Since the peak in March 2016, asking rents have dropped respectively 13.9% and 15.6%.
Oakland used to be red-hot as it attracted San Francisco’s housing refugees. But in November, one-bedroom and two-bedroom rents have dropped respectively 6.4% to $2,060 and 7.1% to $2,500. Both are down 15% from their peaks in April 2016.

This post was published at Wolf Street on Dec 1, 2017.

Sweden’s New Government Censorship Exposed

Authored by Judith Bergman via The Gatestone Institute,
In the report, placing the word “refugees” in quotation marks, as well as “unaccompanied children,” is supposedly an expression of “hate”. (Many, if not most, migrants classified as “unaccompanied children” have turned out to be grown men). Government agencies are going out of their way to protect the “integrity” of possible jihadists out of concern for a “democratic society” — the society that these jihadists want to subvert and destroy — and are using their government platform to smear non-mainstream media for matters as small as the use of quotation marks. What about the “integrity” of Swedish citizens and their right to not be blown up? Why is a municipality sponsoring an organization that supports terrorists and even awarding it prizes? It appears that glorifying terrorism is acceptable in Sweden, so long as its victims are the Israeli children. Far from countering “hate”, Sweden appears to be doing all it can to strengthen Muslim extremism. The Swedish government is now officially questioning free speech. A government agency has declared so-called Swedish “new media” — news outlets that refuse to subscribe to the politically correct orthodoxies of the mainstream media — a possible threat to democracy. In a government report, tellingly called “The White Hatred” written by Totalfrsvarets forskningsinstitut (Total Defense Research Institute), a government agency under the Swedish Ministry of Defense, Swedish new media such as Samhllsnytt (formerly known as Avpixlat), Nyheter Idag and Nya Tider are lumped together with neo-Nazi media such as Nordfront.
“Hate” is defined broadly to include violent extremism, “hateful expressions”, jokes, internet trolling and even the use of certain quotation marks. For instance, in the report, placing the word “refugees” in quotation marks, as well as “unaccompanied children,” is supposedly an expression of “hate”. (Many, if not most, migrants classified as “unaccompanied children” have turned out to be grown men).

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 30, 2017.

20/11/17: Tallying the Costs: U.S. Wars in Iraq, Afghanistan & Pakistan

The folks at Brown University have carried out the most detailed assessment of the disastrous costs of the U. S. wars fought since 9/11. The details can be found here: These are a must read! While Russia stands accused by the U. S. of triggering the humanitarian crisis through its intervention in Syria (the civil war that started with the U. S. support and blessing), here is Brown University’s conclusion about the real refugees crisis:
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Not to say that one wrong (U. S.) makes another wrong right (Russia), but 10.1 million estimated refugees caused by the U. S. wars? This got to stand out, folks.
The U. S. has spent estimated USD5.6 trillion from 9/11 through fiscal year 2018 according to the study.

This post was published at True Economics on Tuesday, November 21, 2017.

Meanwhile In Sweden, Crime Hits All Time Highs

It appears President Trump, having warned that Sweden’s huge intake of refugees would lead to “problems like they never thought possible,” has been vindicated.
Following media mockery and Sweden’s official Twitter account responding:
‘Hey Don, this is @Sweden speaking! It’s nice of you to care, really, but don’t fall for the hype. Facts: We’re OK!’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 20, 2017.

George Responds To Hungary’s “Massive Anti-Soros Propaganda Effort”

Over the past several months we’ve frequently noted the devolving relationship between Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and billionaire financier George Soros. Tensions escalated last month when Orban took it upon himself to mail a Soros-related questionnaire to all 8 million Hungarian voters (see: Hungary Launches Anti-Soros Political Campaign) and then followed that up with an announcement that Hungary’s intelligence services had been instructed to “map” Soros’ network of influence.
As Orban’s ruling party gears up for parliamentary elections in April – where it is the prohibitive favorite to win largely thanks to its refusal to accept refugees under a plan devised by the European Commission – the prime minister has instructed his intelligence services to map what he described as the networks run by the billionaire financier’s ’empire’ targeting his country, Bloomberg reported.
Intelligence agencies will help evaluate what he sees as efforts by Soros to get Hungary punished by EU institutions pursuing a ‘mixed-population’ continent, Orban said in an interview with Kossuth Radio on Friday.
The Associated Press added that the investigation will also focus on alleged Hungarian members of the network.
Intelligence agencies will help evaluate what Orban sees as efforts by Soros to get Hungary punished by EU institutions pursuing a ‘mixed-population’ continent, Orban said in an interview with Kossuth Radio on Friday.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 20, 2017.

“We Paid A Heavy Price For This Mistake” – Europe To Be Flooded With 2nd Refugee Wave, UN Warns

Back in 2015, at the height of Angela Merkel’s “open door” admission policy which in addition to granting German entry to over 1 million refugees, many of whom turned out to be radical jihadists and sent her approval rating crashing to the lowest in her career, the German chancellor realized that the great migration wave from the middle east into Central Europe, originally meant to reinvigorate Europe’s aging demographics (and prompted Deutsche Bank to even boost its German GDP forecast), maybe was not such a great idea, and was just not worth the risks and trade offs.
And while in the subsequent two years Germany in particular, and Central Europe in general managed to avoid another mass migration wave with most refugees gated either in Turkey or Italy, a second wave of migration into Europe now may be imminent as the situation in refugee camps in Africa and the Middle East is only getting worse, the head of the UN World Food Programme said. He added there is a clear link between hunger and migration.
Speaking to German newspaper Die Zeit, the executive director of the UN’s World Food Programme, David Beasley, said that living conditions, mostly food distribution, in refugee camps in crisis-affected regions had deteriorated dramatically before the European migrant crisis struck in 2015.
‘We paid a heavy price for this mistake and I’m afraid we’re about to make it once again,’ Beasley believes. According to the UN food chief, while many asylum seekers wanted to stay in their home region, the lack of food has driven them away. ‘If they don’t have enough food, they will leave. And many of them would go to Europe,’ Beasley said.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 17, 2017.

Meotti: The Migrant Crisis Upended Europe

Authored by Giulio Meoti via The Gatestone Institute,
“The migrant crisis is the 9/11 of the European Union… That day in 2001, everything changed in the US. In a minute, America discovered its vulnerability. Migrants had the same effect in Europe… The migration crisis profoundly undermines the ideas of democracy, tolerance and… the liberal principles that constitute our ideological landscape.” – Ivan Kratsev, Chairman of the Center for Liberal Strategies in Sofia and a member of the Institute of Humanities in Vienna, Le Figaro. The European public now looks at EU institutions with contempt. They perceive them — under multiculturalism and immigration — not only as indifferent to their own problems, but as adding to them. “We are a cultural community, which doesn’t mean that we are better or worse — we are simply different from the outside world… our openness and tolerance cannot mean walking away from protecting our heritage”. – Donald Tusk, President of the European Council. A few weeks after Germany opened its borders to over a million refugees from the Middle East, Africa and Asia, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbn said that the migration crisis would “destabilize democracies“. He was labelled a demagogue and a xenophobe.
Two years later, Orbn has been vindicated. As Politico now explains, “[M]ost EU leaders echo the Hungarian prime minister” and the Hungarian PM can now claim that “our position is slowly becoming the majority position”.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

All Of Iraq About To Be Liberated As ISIS Enters The Dustbin Of History

Submitted by Elijah Magnier, Middle East based chief international war correspondent for Al Rai Media
Iraqi forces continue to advance on al-Qaem, the last “Islamic State” (ISIS) stronghold in Iraq, which will put the last stone over the terrorist group’s grave and on the so-called ‘Islamic State Caliphate’ that so much occupied the world’s headlines over the last few years and indeed, large parts of Iraqi and Syrian territories.
ISIS is aware that al-Qaem will fall very soon – the city won’t be able to hold for very long. Therefore, many of the group’s leaders and militants have fled to the numerous refugee camps which have emerged in the last years – according to intelligence reports – in the Iraqi Anbar desert and the Syrian al-Badiya where ISIS can hide along the tens of thousands of kilometers of sprawling Syrian-Iraqi border areas among refugees.
ISIS is expected to lick its wounds to try and re-organize its group following the defeat inflicted upon it as indicated by its shrinking territory (which it has occupied since 2014), as well as its shrinking numbers. Many foreign fighters were either killed or mostly left the group, which has remained largely incapable of recruiting new forces. Moreover, ISIS resources have dried up: no more oil and gas fields under its control, no more taxes to be imposed, no more arts and crafts to steal and sell, and no more ‘donations’ from the Arab world.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 2, 2017.

There’s Now A Subprime Auto Loan Program Designed Specifically For Refugees

If ever there was a doubt that auto sales have been pushed to the absolute max in this iteration of the industry’s debt-fueled bubble, then consider the following program specifically designed to underwrite subprime auto loans to refugees who have recently arrived in the U. S. with absolutely no credit history or record of any kind. Per The San Diego Union-Tribune:
Newly arrived refugees, especially in driving-oriented places like San Diego, can have trouble finding jobs if they don’t have cars. Because new arrivals generally have no credit history in the U. S. and sometimes make mistakes early on because they don’t understand the system, they often can’t get affordable loans to purchase a car. ‘The struggle of a low-income immigrant family that’s looking to move up, it’s hard enough as it is,’ said Kasra Movahedi, director of the Center for Economic Opportunity. ‘If you also then have low credit, it just becomes that much harder in a hundred small and not-so-noticeable ways. Unfortunately, these are the people that can afford it the least.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 26, 2017.

Europe: Journalists Against Free Speech

Authored by Judith Bergman via The Gatestone Institute,
Gone is all pretense that journalism is about reporting the facts. These are the aims of a political actor. Being bought and paid for by the EU apparently counts as “press freedom” these days. According to the guidelines, journalists should, among other things, “Provide an appropriate range of opinions, including those belonging to migrants and members of minorities, but… not… extremist perspectives just to ‘show the other side’…. Don’t allow extremists’ claims about acting ‘in the name of Islam’ to stand unchallenged…. where it is necessary and newsworthy to report hateful comments against Muslims, mediate the information.” The European Federation of Journalists (EJF), is “the largest organization of journalists in Europe, represents over 320,000 journalists in 71 journalists’ organizations across 43 countries,” according to its website. The EJF, a powerful player, also leads a Europe-wide campaign called “Media against Hate.”
The “Media against Hate” campaign aims to:
“counter hate speech and discrimination in the media, both on and offline… media and journalists play a crucial role in informing…policy … regarding migration and refugees. As hate speech and stereotypes targeting migrants proliferate across Europe… #MediaAgainstHate campaign aims to: improve media coverage related to migration, refugees, religion and marginalised groups… counter hate speech, intolerance, racism and discrimination… improve implementation of legal frameworks regulating hate speech and freedom of speech…”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 25, 2017.

Terror Cases In Germany Quadruple In One Year

More evidence revealing the ridiculousness of the centrist position on immigration – namely that refugees can be seamlessly integrated into European society without a spike in crime or terror – has emerged courtesy of the German newspaper Welt Am Sonntag which revealed Sunday that the number of terrorism-related cases investigated by German authorities has quadrupled over the past year.
Prosecutors have opened more than 900 cases so far this year, compared with just 240 throughout 2016, and 80 cases in 2013.
Germany’s federal police estimate 705 Islamist extremists willing to carry out terror attacks are active in the country, up from 600 during an estimate in February. Germany’s domestic intelligence agency recently said around 24,400 Islamists are active in the country but most of them don’t pose an immediate terror threat.
To be sure, the number of migrants applying for asylum in Germany plummeted to about 280,000 in 2016, about one-third the number from the prior year. But the increase in crime – coupled with the Christian Democratic Union’s embarrassing showing in federal elections last month – are slowly inspiring the country’s centrists to accept that more needs to be done to limit and control immigration in Europe’s largest economy.
According to the Daily Caller, Germany’s federal prosecutor’s office can’t keep up with the increase in the number of cases. To wit, nearly 300 cases have been transferred to the state level. Not all cases involve plans to carry out attacks. Migrants from Syran, Iraq and Afghanistan have been tried over alleged membership in terror groups without being suspected of planning attacks on European soil.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 24, 2017.

Germany’s “Open Doors” Are Closing: Merkel Seeks New Limits On Refugees

After German Chancellor Angela Merkel admitted late last year that she had ‘lost control’ of Germany’s refugee crisis after adopting an ‘open door’ policy that fueled an unprecedented spike in crime, her weakened ruling coalition announced Monday that it would seek to impose new restrictions on the number of refugees admitted to the country.
Germany famously admitted nearly one million refugees from Syria, Libya, Afghanistan and other war zones in 2015, a five-fold increase over the previous year.
Migrants repaid Germany for its openness by committing 142,500 crimes during the first six months of 2016, including several high-profile sexual assaults.
And now it seems Merkel has hit a wall and folded…
Merkel announced the policy change on Monday during a joint news conference with Horst Seehofer, leader of the Bavarian Christian Social Union – the more conservative partner to Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union – following discussions in which the two parties sought compromises on a number of issues following poor results in the federal elections two weeks ago, according to CNN.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 9, 2017.

The FT Defends Soros Against Conspiracy-Theory-Peddling Propagandists

For a new generation of nationalists (by which they clearly imply tin-foil-hat wearing, nazi-sympathizing, probably-drug-taking, conspiracy-theory-loving wonks), The FT’s Gideon Rachman explains – for those not willing to think for themselves, or follow the money, that the billionaire investor has become the perfect villain…
George Soros, the billionaire investor and philanthropist, has had a busy year.
Since the beginning of 2017, he has faked a chemical attack in Syria, funded anti-Trump marches in Washington, come up with the ‘Soros plan’ to flood Hungary with refugees, forced a change of government in Macedonia, undermined the Israeli prime minister and got several key White House aides sacked.
Not bad for a man of 87.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 2, 2017.

Armed Soldiers To Replace Cops On Danish Streets

Even as Europe’s political establishment professes its liberal ideals by accepting – or in the case of the ongoing spat between Brussels and Central Europe, forcing others to accept – as many refugees as humanitarian virtue signalling will require, the true face of Europe is gradually emerging behind the scenes, and according to The Local.de, starting today armed soldiers from the Danish Armed Forces (Forsvaret) will replace police officers at both Denmark’s southern border to Germany and at potential terror targets in Copenhagen.
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According to the Danish National Police (Rigspolitiet) and Copenhagen Police, 160 soldiers will patrol the border and take over guard duties at Jewish institutions including the Great Synagogue in central Copenhagen.
The synagogue has been under constant police protection since a Danish-born terrorist of Palestinian descent shot and killed 37-year-old Dan Uzan, a volunteer security guard, outside the building in February 2015. The gunman, Omar El-Hussein, had earlier in the night opened fire with an automatic rifle outside a cultural centre hosting a free speech event, killing 55-year-old Finn Nrgaard and injuring police officers. El-Hussein was later shot and killed by police.
The soldiers’ role at the German border was described as ancillary and will not entail actively checking the IDs of those entering the country. That role will still be filled by police officers and members of the Danish Home Guard (Hjemmevrnet), which has been active in border checks since April 2016.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Sep 29, 2017.

Rajoy Shuts Down Airspace & Orders Google to Stop Assisting Separatists

The Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy who is becoming a disgrace to the image of a free society and is illustrating what governments do in a Private Wave – they become authoritarian whenever they lose power. Rajoy has gone way too far showing the world that Spain is itself a country risk for there is no human right or standard of international law. The Catalan supporters are now occupying poll points to protect their right to vote, while Rajoy has now blocked airspace over Barcelona as he wants to prevent the referendum in Catalonia by all means.
Rajoy had his puppet Spanish Supreme Court order that Google had to delete an app that had been used by the operators of the referendum to communicate with each other. The corrupt Spanish court ruled that the ‘On Votar 1-Oct’ application on the Google Play smartphone app shop violated the ban imposed by Spain to conduct the referendum. Rajoy is totally out of control and is illustrating everything that is wrong about the EU and how it claims to stand for human right with the refugees but crushes anyone Europe who disagrees with the politic elite.

This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Sep 30, 2017.

About Half 2.5 million Refugees Still Waiting for Approval for Asylum

According to Eurostat, at the end of 2016 there were almost 1.2 million migrants waiting for a decision on their asylum applications. Already, about 880,000 people were granted asylum with only 66,000 being returned to their home country. Then there were 110,000 people whose whereabouts are just unknown. This means that by the end of 2016, some 52% of 2.5 million refugees were still waiting for their asylum to be granted. The bulk or 53% of all asylum seekers come from only 3 countries – Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq, according to what they claimed. About 50% of all asylum applications were filed in Germany.
Armstrong Economics

This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Sep 29, 2017.

Germany – Trying to Form a Government Won’t Be Easy

Trying to form a government in Germany is not so easy. Green leader, Simone Peter, says they and the FDP agree with Merkel that there should be no limit to refugees. He said’ ‘In a coalition with us, there will be no upper limit for refugees, just as with the CDU and FDP. The CSU has to adjust to this if it wants to seriously question Jamaica,’ he told the Rheinische Post.
The CSU, normally the sister party of the CDU in Bavaria, saw what they lost to the AfD. Even Merkel is vowing to bring back the right into the fold.

This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Sep 28, 2017.

Trump To Adopt Draconian Refugee Cap, Admit Fewest Refugees In Decades

Two days after the Trump administration officially abandoned its controversial travel ban in favor of targeted restrictions singling out travelers from a larger list of countries, Foreign Policy is reporting that the Trump administration plans to dramatically reduce the number of refugees that the US accepts every year – the long-awaited second part of the administration’s immigration agenda.
The new targeted restrictions, officially confirmed late Sunday, range from a near-total ban on visitors from some countries to restrictions on only a small number of visas in others. Officials say they were applied to countries that were unable or unwilling to adopt policies that help vet their nationals to detect security threats.
Combined with the Trump administration’s new ‘targeted’ restrictions – to be sure, pro-immigration groups have vowed a legal challenge – the tighter restrictions on refugees represents the replacement of a section of Trump’s travel ban that faced fierce resistence from federal district judges who repeatedly tried to overturn the ban, or limit its scope.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Sep 26, 2017.

Venezuelan Women Turn To Prostitution To Afford Food

All twelve women who work at the ‘Show Malilo Night Club’ brothel in Arauca, Colombia are from Venezuela. As Venezuela’s socialist economic crisis continues, many Venezuelan women have turned to the sex trade in neighboring Colombia to eat and provide for their families.
‘We’ve got lots of teachers, some doctors, many professional women and one petroleum engineer,’ brothel owner Gabriel Snchez said of the women who sell their bodies for $25 an hour. ‘All of them showed up with their degrees in hand.’ Sanchez who is 60 years-old, started the brothel in Arauca, Colombia after he lost his job in a car repair shop in Venezuela thanks to the government’s socialist policies.
Snchez and others in the sex industry say Venezuelans dominate the trade now because they’re willing to work for less pay. ‘I would say 99 percent of the prostitutes in this town are Venezuelan,’ he said. Amid food shortages, hyperinflation, rampant poverty driven by socialism, and U. S. sanctions, waves of economic refugees have fled the country. Those with the means to do so have gone to places like Miami, Santiago, and Panama. But those who are less fortunate, have had to sink low to simply eat.
A recent study suggested as many as 350,000 Venezuelans had entered Colombia in the last six years. With jobs scarce in the country though, many young (and some not so young) women are turning to the world’s oldest profession to make ends meet. According to the Miami Herald, prostituting for money to buy basic necessities has become commonplace for Venezuelan women.

This post was published at shtfplan on September 25th, 2017.

REVEALED: US-Backed Kurdish Factions Colluding with ISIS on Syrian Battlefield

21st Century Wire says…
The evidence is mounting, that the US power-multiplied Kurdish factions are colluding with ISIS, as the Syrian Arab Army crosses the Euphrates and threatens to bring an end to international terrorism inside Syria once and for all. It is not the first time that this possibility has been demonstrated by the Kurds’ military strategy on Syrian soil.
In June 2017, Sergey Surovikin, the commander of Russia’s forces in Syria told media:
‘According to available reliable information, in early June ISIL terrorists entered into collusion with the command of the Kurdish armed units, which are part of the Democratic Forces Union, left the populated localities of Tadia and al-Hamam located 19 kilometers southwest of Raqqa offering no resistance and headed toward Palmyra.’
June 2017: Andrew Korybko detailed the ongoing ‘ethnic cleansing’ operation conducted by the US-backed Kurdish factions:
‘Reports have come out that the US is supporting the SDF-YPG through the illegal use of white phosphorus, which is a banned chemical weapon. Combined with the heavy and indiscriminate airstrikes being carried out against the city, 160,000 civilians have been forced to become refugees and flee their homes as internally displaced people. This works out to more than half of the city’s pre-war population of 220,000, and it confirms what independent journalist and associate editor at 21stcenturywire.com Vanessa Beeley told RT just recently about how the US is making no attempt whatsoever to protect civilians. In fact, it can be cynically suggested, the large-scale population exodus taking place in Raqqa is actually a deliberate ethnic cleansing of the majority-Arab population of the city on a much larger scale than any of the similar crimes that the Kurds have been accused of before.’
The #US and #Kurd assets were in a rush to end #Raqqa before #Syria freed DeirEzzor, so murdered 1000s of civilians. — Partisangirl (@Partisangirl) September 20, 2017

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on SEPTEMBER 20, 2017.