UBS to close accounts

The Patriot Act could claim thousands of scalps in the coming weeks as Swiss banking giant UBS has announced that it will close some 19,000 accounts of their American clientele. From the NYT

In a step that would have once been unthinkable in the rarefied world of Swiss banking, UBS will shut about 19,000 accounts that prosecutors suspect have gone undeclared to the Internal Revenue Service.

UBS will transfer the assets to other banks or other divisions within UBS, or will mail checks directly to the account holders, creating paper trails for federal prosecutors who are examining whether UBS clients used such accounts to evade taxes.

The clients now face stark choices: they can cash their checks, and thereby alert the authorities to any potential wrongdoing, or not cash them, effectively losing their money.

Or they can transfer the money to new banks, a procedure which, in the case of foreign banks, requires depositors of more than $10,000 to report the new account to the Treasury Department.

“You can either take that check and throw it in the woods, or deposit it somewhere and get busted,” said a UBS client, who asked not to be named because of the investigations into UBS and its clients. “There’s nowhere to hide.” …

But because prosecutors claim that some UBS clients failed to make adequate disclosures in the past or lied on their tax returns about holding offshore accounts, the authorities may view the new disclosures as criminal evidence, not just of tax evasion but also of money laundering, a more serious offense.

Indeed. Money Laundering is very, very serious.

It seems like the law that was designed to starve islamic terrorists of the money to finance their operations will be used to sock it to wealthy Americans who have evaded income taxes. Although the list of names that will surface will be interesting to see, the actions by UBS reveal the need for junking the tax code and replacing it with the Fair Tax.

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Weekend Link dump

Red Alert: Confidential witness ready to blow up Clinton and Holder confirmations with dirt on the Marc Rich pardon, Doug Ross

I can’t think of a better way for Obama to finally be rid of Her Thighness than to have her publicly humiliated with this garbage.

But then, Obama wouldn’t be behind this. No. Never. Henh.

A Libertarian Defense of Social Conservatism, By Randall Hoven

I’m still searching for the mythical creature that is the “financially conservative, socially liberal” politician. In virtually every case, the pro-abortion or pro-gay marriage politician is the first to vote against a tax cut, the first to vote for more spending and quick to compromise principles on any issue there is.

Using the National Journal’s ratings of Senators in 2007 , the correlation coefficient between “economic” scores and “social” scores is 90%. That means they almost always go together; financial conservatives are social conservatives and vice versa. Every Senator scoring above 60 in economic issues, scored above 50 in social ones. Every Senator scoring below 40 in economic issues, scored below 50 in social ones. If there is such an animal as a “financial conservative, social liberal”, it does not exist in the US Senate.

NBC News Obtains Videotape of 9/11 Hijacker Being Coached by al-Qaida Handlers, Breitbart

Who knew the evil Chimpy McHaliburton could be so devious? Chances are, the emergence of this tape will make little difference to the troofers and at least half the democrats in NY.

Muslim Fanatics ‘Hijack British Prison’, Daily (uk) Express

MUSLIM prisoners have launched a reign of terror inside a top security British jail.

The fanatics are forcing fellow inmates to convert to Islam or face punishment beatings.

One man who stood up to the thugs was branded with a lump of hot metal, according to a prison source.

The crisis at Whitemoor jail in Cambridgeshire has led to calls by staff for the 100 Muslim inmates there to be dispersed to other prisons round the country.

Some Al Qaeda supporters have set up a kangaroo court, sitting in judgment on prisoners and ordering punishments, the source said.

Hawaiian officials admit withholding Obama’s original BC, Israel Insider

Now it’s pretty apparent why Barack Obama made his sudden, last minute visit to Honolulu. It wasn’t Granny’s health problems that interested him but Hawaii’s Health Department.

The strategy may have backfired. A statement by Hawaiian officials Friday that they have seen but won’t release an “original” birth certificate that has never been released raises more questions than it answers.

Time for a Bank Holiday, The Nation

Here is the ugly, unofficial truth that neither Wall Street nor the government will acknowledge: the pinnacle of the US financial system is broke–with perhaps $2 trillion in rotten financial assets on the books. Nobody knows, exactly. The bankers won’t say, and regulators won’t ask, or at least don’t dare tell the public. Official silence naturally feeds the conviction that banking’s problems are far worse than we’ve been told. The Levy Economics Institute of Bard College puts it plainly: “It is probable that many and perhaps most financial institutions are insolvent today–with a black hole of negative net worth that would swallow Paulson’s entire $700 billion in one gulp.”

The World is Coming to an End (And it might even have a happy ending), Financial Sense Univ

We are facing a depression that will rival that of the Great Depression of the 1920’s and may more closely resemble the Greater Depression of 1873.

There are going to be stock market rallies within this bear market, and that will be the time for those still holding and hoping to get out before the bear really begins to claw in 2009.

Before this secular Bear Market is over, we are going to new lows in all indices, more than 3500 banks will close, unemployment will surge, there will be violence in the streets and people will kill you to get what you have.


UBS may need extra bailout, swissinfo

Switzerland’s biggest bank, UBS, could receive another bailout if it faces more difficulties under the global financial crisis, the Federal Banking Commission says.

So, who’s next in the bailout parade?


Citi to get bailout,
WSJ

WASHINGTON – The federal government agreed Sunday to take unprecedented steps to stabilize Citigroup Inc. by moving to guarantee close to $300 billion in troubled assets weighing on the bank’s books, according to people familiar with details of the plan.

Treasury has agreed to inject an additional $20 billion in capital into Citigroup under terms of the deal hashed out between the bank, the Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Treasury officials will charge a higher interest rate for the capital injection — 8% for the first few years — than it has charged to dozens of other banks now borrowing money under the government’s the $700 billion rescue package approved by Congress last month.

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