Monday, December 1, 2014

December Update

Hello again.  I only have a few things to discuss this month.

There was a discussion at Dinar Vets about our friend Marcus Curtis' post a while back entitled "Trials for Dinar Holders".  In that post MC postulated that Iraq was actually using dinar sales to feed their foreign currency reserves, and that there are about 25 trillion dinar in the hands of speculators.  The responses were predictable.  "He's a guitarist and an armchair economist" .... "That was before Maliki was removed" ... "It's just a blog; he ddn't even bother to purchase a domain name" ... etc.  No real discussion occurred as to the links Marcus provided or the facts he presented. 

First of all, the fact that he plays the guitar has nothing to do with whether or not his analysis is valid.  After all, what qualifications does Adam "Wolfyman" Montana or any other guru have?  What matters is whether or not his theory holds water, and if it's based on facts. 

Second, as I've mentioned for some time Maliki has nothing to do with whether or not there's an RV.  He's been gone for four months and no RV.  I'm confident that four months or four years from now there still won't be any RV of the IQD.  Nothing more than a few % anyway.  The bloated money supply of the IQD is the issue, not Maliki or Obama or Madame Wu or anybody else.  It's about the numbers.

And third, Marcus has never run any ads or made any money from his site, so why should he purchase a domain name?  And again, domain name or no domain name ... what counts is facts.  It's a fact that the CBI financials show 34 trillion dinar outside of banks, and that less than 10 trillion can be accounted for within Iraq.  It's a fact that their money supply steadily increased from 2004-2013.  (It seems to have stalled over the past year or so.  By a strange coincidence dinar sales have really fallen during that time.  Dealers don't really need to buy from out of country any more because they can get all the dinar they want from disillusioned specuators, which would support Marcus' theory that they have used the sale of dinar to grow their foreign currency reserves.  No dinar exports for USD = no FCR growth = no expanding money supply.  With fewer USD flowing into Iraq for oil due to lower oil prices, and with fewer USD being exchangd for IQD, my guess is that the market value of the IQD will take a hit in 2015 which could trigger another round of inflation, which ironically enough could lead to an increase in the official value of the IQD from its currenct value of $.000857.  I wouldn't be surprised to seem them bump the value up a few % next year.  Anyway, back to the original topic.)  And it's also a fact that dinar from outside of Iraq wasn't accepted during the previous two currency changeovers in Iraq.  Marcus provides links for all of that.   

So LAC (the lady who asked if there was anything to what Marcus said) take note of the fact that nobody who responded to you dealt with any of these facts.  Then form your own conclusions.


On Nov. 17 Breitling said that in the last five or six years the dinar has gone up 26% while the S&P has only gone up about 12%.  I thought it might be nice to look at some charts to see if there's anything to this.

As you can see the S&P six years ago was at 903, and today it's at 2041.  That would be an increase of 126%, or about 21% per year.  Now let's take a looksie at the dinar.

As you can see, the dinar was at $.00085 six years ago and today it's at $.000857 which is an increase of about 8/10 of 1%, or about .0013% per year.   

While I'm talking about B, let me issue a reminder about his claim that the Ministry of Planning's feasibility study told us that they're going to raise the value to $1 and eventually $3.  That study said that they recommended REDUCING the exchange rate from $3.20 to $1.13.  The IQD was never valued at more than a tenth of a penny.  The feasibility study is from the Saddam era and is 100% irrelevant.  The issue that they were adressing was that depreciation of the Saddam dinar during the 80s had rendered the $3.20 valuation obsolete.

It turns out that the study was from 1984 and was revised in 1990.  As our friend Brian has pointed out more than once, basing your dinar speculation on this feasibility study makes about as much sense as shopping for a house based on real estate prices from the '70s.  I wrote about this two Decembers ago.

In turn, The Guidance For Technical And Economic Feasibility Studies And Post-Project Assessment Of Development Project (Regulations No. 1 for the Year of 1984 and it’s amendment for the year of 1990) has specifies a series of steps to be undertaken, which lead to the completion of a Capital Budget.

Also, as you've probably heard in the news the price of oil has dropped about 40% since June.  What does that mean for dinar investors?  Well, it's good news of course!  This means they'll have to hurry up and RV because they're going to be hard up for cash, you see.  At least that's what you'll hear from the gurus.  Interestingly enough it's also good news for dinarians when the price of oil goes up, because they'll be able to RV at a higher rate.  And it's also good news when the price remains stable because Iraq needs stability, you know.  So no matter what happens it's all good.  (facepalm) 

The  truth is things are really bad in Iraq, what with ISIS controlling a good amount of the country and sectarian division and all.  This slump in oil prices (remember that oil revenues account for nearly 90% of their GDP) only makes things worse.  The gurus won't tell you this of course, but I will.  Right about now anybody with any sense who has dinar ought to be questioning this "investment".  Don't worry, you're not alone.  I went through the same epiphany a little over three years ago, and many of my readers did as well.  We all make mistakes in life.  The important thing is that you learn from them and move on. 

And finally, I'd like to issue my annual reminder that the gurus love to predict an RV by the end of the year, and they're ALWAYS wrong.  They'll be wrong this time, too. 

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

November Update

Not much to report this month other than a couple of articles and a really stupid guru comment.

The article that seemed to generate the most interest was this one.

"A few days ago announced a committee of economy and investment in the Iraqi parliament, that the deletion of zeros from the Iraqi currency will be working by next year (2015).

It is noteworthy that the subject of the deletion of zeros from the Iraqi currency is not new, it was the Iraqi government project about deleting three zeros from the Iraqi dinar, to reduce inflation suffered by the Iraqi currency, but it has been postponed. He was scheduled to testify in 2011 to delete the three zeros from denominations of Iraqi currency, so that it becomes the new dinar, equal to 1000 Old dinars.
What does that mean?

First, it is necessary to clarify the fact that the abolition of zeros any currency in the world, does not mean in any way an improvement in the exchange rate, and this in turn leads to another conclusion is that the deletion of zeros does not mean as well as any improvement in the Iraqi citizen's income, it does not mean to address the many
economic problems suffered by the Iraqi economy. If that is the case, for all the world's governments scrapped zeros from their currencies. The deletion will not address inflation and will not contribute to the aggravation, and will enhance the economic reform, that if there is any economic reform originally.

The only goal is to facilitate the buying and selling processes, and the mitigation of carrying large quantities of banknotes, and perhaps give a positive psychological boost for Iraqis, so that they feel, even if only from the door of the feeling, that the purchasing power of the dinar, has become the best. In any case, we must clarify here is the fact that the Central Bank of Iraq, the authority is independent of the government is not entitled to state intervention work."

The article clearly states that:

  1. The new dinar will be equal to 1000 old dinars. That means that it will be valued at $.86. That would be a lop, folks.
  2. The deletion of the zeros doesn't mean in any way an improvement in the exchange rate or in the Iraqi citizen's income. That would be a lop too, folks.
  3. This isn't being done to fix their economic problems. If they could fix their economic problems by removing zeros then every country would do it. While that sounds sooo obvious it's amazing how many dinarians can't seem to comprehend the fact that you can't revalue your way into prosperity.
  4. The only goal is to facilitate buying and selling. "Facilitate" means it will be easier, which is what a redenomination (lop) does. It makes cash transactions and accounting easier. They go on to say that they hope that this will provide a psychological boost to use a currency with a higher value, even if there's no true increase in purchasing power.
The article concludes with a reference to the dinar returning to its glorious past (how many times have we heard gurus talking about the dinar returning to its glorious past through a revaluation?), but that this is "false joy, nothing else". In other words, the redenomination will give the people a good feeling, but it's only a feeling. There's no true increase.

Read the article here.

A November Douchie is awarded to Frank Villa (Frank26) who stated his opinion that the algorithm has been released and is making its way around the world. Folks, this line is almost three years old. Take a look at this post I did in December of 2011. There's no algorithm, no activation, and no RV. The IQD is stuck at 1166 to the dollar and will probably remain there until it is replaced by the new dinar. The only thing in the system that's making its way around the world is pumper BS.

Another article getting a lot of attention was this one that says the initiative to revalue and delete zeros from the Iraqi Dinar will be delayed for five years because of the political and security situation in Iraq. Of course there are some who will point to the word "revalue" and insist that it's not a redenomination or "lop" that they're talking about but an increase in purchasing power from a revaluation. But as many of us can attest, you have to go by the description of the process and not the particular verbage resulting from the translation of Arabic into English. The process they've been talking about for at least four years is a typical redenomination that you can read about in any financial or investment dictionary. You don't delete zeros, issue new currency, and remove the old currency from circulation in a revaluation. Even if they botch the translation the description tells you very clearly what they intend to do.

Removing Three Zeros - Brad, Charlie, and
Michael Teadt do the perp walk (Sept. 2012)
But the good news from October in my opinion was the sentencing of Brad Huebner and Charlie Emmenecker from the BH Group. Brad got seven years and Charlie got three for dinar fraud and related charges. It seems there is at least some justice in this world. Apparently Brad is still in denial, stating that "one day in the near future the Iraqi government would revalue its currency and everyone’s investment would pay off". Unbelievable! Their partner in crime Rudy Coenen received a five year sentence back in September for his role in the ruse. Now if we can just get the justice department to follow up with a dozen or so more indictments.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

October Update

It's been a month since I did a post, so I thought I should write something.  The truth is there really isn't much to talk about.  The "war" against ISIS isn't going well, but even if we could instantly eradicate them it wouldn't bring about any increase in the official value of the IQD.  The leadership in Iraq is still trying to figure out who is in charge of what and how they're going to proceed from here.  And of course the gurus are still saying "any day now".

I've been asked to comment on a couple of things.  First is this Dave Schmidt guy.  I've already given him two Douchebag of the Month awards.  The guy is a serious contender for the 2014 Dinar Douchebag of the Year.  For anybody who is on the fence about him check out the links below.

The second thing is the Zimbabwe dollar.  Somebody emailed me telling me that the gurus are pumping it again and that it's a scam.  NO KIDDING!?!?!?!  I know the fact that the ZWD has a ton of zeros excites people at the possibilities of a revaluation, but you have to realize that the currency is valued that low for a reason.  NOBODY WANTS IT!  Nobody except for gullible speculators, that is.  From Wikipedia:

"Despite attempts to control inflation by legislation, and three redenominations (in 2006, 2008 and 2009), use of the Zimbabwean dollar as an official currency was effectively abandoned on 12 April 2009 due to the skyrocketing inflation."

Just because something has a very low price doesn't mean it's undervalued.  Toothpicks are pretty cheap too.  Why not stock up on them?  Maybe the Central Bank of Toothpicks will raise the value on them and you'll get rich!  It makes about as much sense as buying Zimbabwe dollars.  As one honest ZWD dealer says "ZIMBABWE CURRENCY IS DEFUNCT AND NOT LEGAL TENDER ANYWHERE.". 

In closing, I'd like to direct you to a great post.  Jay Adkisson from Forbes did an article called "You Can't Fix Stupid - The Iraqi Dinar Scam Lives" a couple of years ago, and every month or so he updates it with his thoughts on the dinar investment.  This month he said, among other things:

"Sometimes currencies lose their value to the point where the mere size of the bills means they have become impractical. Thus, if you’re having to pay for a pack of smokes with a Dinar-10,000 bill, things are obviously out-of-whack, and the government has to re-denominate the currency so that the folks using the currency don’t lose all confidence in it and start trading in some other currency. That is what is happening to the Dinar.

But re-denomination of a currency does not, repeat NOT, change its value relative to other currencies. What actually happens with a redomination is that the government simply issues new bills, knocking a few zeros off, and then sets a deadline by which the old bills become worthless unless they are traded in by that date. So, the local resident might take in their old Dinar-10,000 bills and exchange them for new Dinar-100 bills."  (Give the page a minute to load, and then scroll down to the bottom right before the comments.)

Now, lest anybody conclude that Jay talks about the dinar like I do, I assure you it's the other way around.  Experts like Jay and John Jagerson are responsible for my epiphany.  I learned what I know from them, from a few sharp guys who frequently comment on this blog, and from my own research.  My thanks once again to Jay for his frank analysis of this scam.  Until next time.



Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Three Years

My how time flies.  Three years ago this month I started this blog.  In those three years a lot has happened.  A few dinar douchebags have been arrested and convicted.  Many have been exposed as frauds.  Some have disappeared.  Others have just tweaked their presentation and kept on going.  Many people have caught on and sold their dinar.  Some have actually joined me in the cause.  And then there's Iraq.  Coalition forces left at the end of 2011.  Shabibi was removed as the governor of the CBI in October of 2012.  President Talibani was disabled by a stroke two months later.  Now in 2014 the terrorist organization ISIS has taken over about a third of Iraq, and it appears that the US is heading back into Iraq to some extent. 

Yes, a lot has happened but one thing hasn't happened.  The much heralded RV.  Oh sure, the dinar's value went from $.0008547 to $.0008576 (or 1170:1 to 1166:1) a couple of years ago but that's not the RV that the gurus were hyping and the hopeful were waiting for.  That RV will never happen.

When I started the blog a lot of people got mad at me for calling gurus "douchebags" and insisting that nobody would get rich by owning dinar.  Since then the hatred has waned as people started waking up.  Today almost all of the sites are bashing gurus to one extent or another.  In fact I hear some of what I've said being repeated in conference calls and posted in forums. 

Since September of 2011 this blog has had 850,000 hits.  By my estimate it should hit 1 million next summer if the blog is still up.  Considering how little traffic I had the first few weeks that's just amazing to me.  A lot of that is due to the word of mouth advertising done by my readers, and for that I am truly grateful. 

I have started another blog and have moved on for the most part, but this experience will always be with me.  The one thing I've proven to myself is that one person can make a difference.  You should never be afraid to respond when you see an injustice taking place.  You should never refuse to try just because the odds are against you.  When you hear yourself saying "why doesn't somebody do something about this?" stop and ask yourself if you might be that somebody.  And don't ever be intimidated into silence, thinking that you don't know enough to have a valid opinion or to voice those opinions.  I have learned more since I started the blog than I did before I started it, but I started with what I knew and proceeded from there.

I'm certainly not taking all of the credit.  John Jagerson was the voice in the wilderness two years before I came along.  Others like DaveD and Brian Simpson were debunking guru BS on various forums for years.  Marcus Curtis revamped his pro-RV blog and denounced the dinar scam two years ago.  Baghdad Invest joined in the fun for awhile, even trapping the gurus with a fake RV story which they later admitted was a hoax to see how many gurus "confirmed" their intel.  They've now returned to their true passion which is updating people on the events in Iraq.  We wish them well.

All of us have contributed to the decline in dinar sales and dinar site traffic.  All of us have been vindicated over time.  All of us have helped to curb the hype and irrational exuberance that was prevalent in the dinar world a few years ago.

As for the dinar, I'm afraid the future's not too bright.  If it survives at all the value is likely to remain below 1/10 of a penny.  I still maintain that nobody will get rich from owning the IQD or the VND.  You will probably lose money on both.  If you haven't figured that out by now I can't help you. 

Thanks again everybody, and best wishes to all!    


Sunday, August 10, 2014

In Memory of Chuckles

Early on in the life of this blog I conducted interviews with members of the dinar community. My purpose in doing this frankly was to provide content for the search engines (which apparently worked), but it was also to provide examples to the dinar community of people who had stories to tell about how their views on the dinar had evolved since they first invested. One interview that I conducted was with a dinar forum owner known affectionately as Chuckles.

Chuckles was kicked out of several dinar forums for "being a troublemaker", so he started his own forum where people were free to discuss the dinar from all viewpoints. Nobody was banned for being negative or a "lopper". There were no ads and no paid membership or post-RV programs. He paid the monthly expenses out of his own pocket just because he wanted to provide an environment that was needed.

For the first few months there wasn't much traffic to his forum, but when a mod revolt occurred at Dinar Vets a couple thousand people found their way over to his Dinar Dater site.  ("Dater" was his tongue in cheek reference to the "RV Monday" BS from dinar gurus who are perpetually setting dates and rates, but when the site became well known some of the other forum owners started ignorantly referring to it as a dating site.)  The site became a popular location for some well known people in the dinar community, and because of that Chuckles was able to find some of the answers that he had been looking for about this "investment".  In time he sold off his dinar and denounced it as a scam.  The forum closed down in late 2012.

Chuckles took his name from his love of comedy and his incredible sense of humour.  He loved to make people laugh, and even mentioned his wish to try his hand at doing standup.  The photo below is one he provided for me when I posted my interview with him.
In that interview Chuckles said that he learned about the dinar from his father who was approached by a member of the BH Group.  They sold him on the possibility of a huge payout and like many of us who have since learned better he quickly bought a few million, thinking that he didn't have time to do sufficient research.  When he told Chuckles about the dinar he also bought a few million "just in case", but he was always trying to figure out just how Iraq was going to pull this off.  That set him on a quest for the facts, and that quest eventually led him to this blog.  He was then able to direct his father to accurate information and his dad sold off his dinar.  Shortly after that his dad's acquaintances in the BH Group were indicted, and he expressed his gratitude to Chuckles for getting him out of this scam.

Tragically, we lost Chuckles in July to a medical condition that had plagued him for some time.  He leaves behind a wife and daughter along with many friends from his days of playing in bands and his years of working in IT.  He also leaves behind a thankful dinar crowd whom he welcomed into his forum at no expense to them and with no pressure to conform.  He will be missed.


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

More Bad News for Dinarians

The Dinar's Dismal Future: Sell Now (Forbes)

It’s not looking good for the Iraqi dinar revaluation.
For those just tuning in, millions of Iraqi dinars have been sold to “investors” hoping to make a windfall when, and if, the currency is revalued in their favor. No one knows how many people have been sold this tale of overnight wealth since the dealers for these notes are not regulated.

As you’ve probably noted from the headlines, Iraq is in bad shape. Sunni insurgents have taken most of the northwestern part of the country; the central government and army are weak, abusive and indecisive; and the Kurds are asserting their virtual autonomy in the Northeast.

Iraq is basically enmeshed in a brutal civil war without any cohesive social fabric to pull it back together. Except for some military advisers, the U.S. and Western powers are staying out of the country. Iraq could very well break apart into three separate regions dominated by Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds. No one is sure what’s going to happen next.

Where does that leave the untold thousands holding dinars who are awaiting their payday? The endgame may be near for this currency, which probably won’t survive if the country breaks up.
Professor Cory Bunting, director of the Capital Markets Center at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, is not optimistic. Prof. Bunting has been watching the situation and offered me this blunt advice:

“In my opinion, the dinar will never ‘revalue’ to the rate the pro-dinar pundits lead people to believe. In fact, it remains to be seen if the country of Iraq, as we know it today, will even exist in its present form in 10 years time. Many people who currently hold dinars probably view them as a ‘sunk cost’ or a call option on a dream.

If I held dinar, I would sell them back to a currency dealer. You will likely lose about 20% as the bid price ( to sell to dealers) is far below what the price is to buy from them.

As an investor, I would just take the 20% loss and move on rather than sit on a stack of paper that will likely be worth nothing, or nearly nothing, in ten years time. That said, taking losses is hard for most people and hope springs eternal that wealth is just around the corner.”

What, sell a pile of potentially lucrative lottery tickets? Who in their right mind would want to do that?

The reason it’s so difficult to take a loss in dinar is that 1) they were oversold by currency dealers, 2) people believed the “story” that the dinar would be revalued upward, 3) they didn’t cost much to begin with and 4) losses are felt twice as intensely as gains. No one likes to take a loss and move again, although it’s the rational thing to do.

Although no regulator knows how many investors hold the dinar, Prof. Bunting estimates “that there are around 40 trillion Dinar in circulation and only about 5 trillion actually reside in Iraq so the rest in held by dinar speculators around the world. I guess you could say that the Dinar is Iraq’s largest export product).”

In the interim, heed this advice about currency dealers in general:
  • “The Iraqi dinar scheme has been surprisingly long-lived, giving federal and state regulators and nonprofit consumer groups time to issue warnings about the dinar and other foreign currency investment opportunities. Take them seriously
  • Read the prospectus or offering document. You should receive a written statement that provides all relevant information about the investment and the company selling it, including the company’s history, operations, financial conditions, and key personnel. No prospectus? Don’t invest.
  • If I buy the investment, then what? Who is going to buy the dinars you have in a drawer in your house? While there are no guarantees in the return of, say, a mutual fund that invests in stocks, you can at least sell it the day after you bought it.”
Even though I’ve been warning about dinar buying for years, I have no idea what the Iraq Central Bank will do with this currency. It may very well revalue it in the favor of those who hold it. But it has to go through a lot of anguish and bloodshed before that happens.


Iraq is already splitting into three states (USA Today)

Ever since U.S. forces invaded Iraq and toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003, the U.S. government has worried that Iraq would splinter into three states — each representing the feuding religious and ethnic factions the dictator held together through his iron rule.
It may no longer be necessary to worry that Iraq will break apart. In many ways, it already has.
The radical Islamic State that seized a swath of western and central Iraq last month effectively left the nation in three pieces, government officials and analysts say.
The United States worries that a fractured Iraq could lead to a failed state, allowing the radical Islamists to establish a stronghold from which they can export terrorism to other parts of the region and world.
Ryan Crocker, who served as U.S. ambassador to Iraq from 2007 to 2009, described the divisions as "Shiastan," "Jihadistan" and Kurdistan. The references are to the majority Shiite Muslims, who run the national government in Baghdad; the insurgent Sunni Muslim jihadists who make up the Islamic State; and the ethnic Kurds, who have long presided over an oil-rich, semiautonomous enclave in the north
"In a sense, it's apocalypse now," Crocker said.

"Iraq is not one Iraq anymore," Fuad Hussein, chief of staff to Kurdistan Regional Government President Massoud Barzani, said at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy during a recent U.S. visit.

The challenge for Washington is determining whether — and how — the country can be pieced back together. The Obama administration says Iraq must stay united if it is to take back the country from the radical Islamists.

Ironically, Joe Biden had argued as a U.S. senator in 2006, when Iraq was in the throes of sectarian violence, that the country be divided into three autonomous regions with a weak central government . His idea never gained traction, and the administration in which he serves as vice president argues the opposite view.

"The strongest single blunt to that threat (division) would be a strong capable federal government in Iraq that is actually able to exert control and influence to push back on that threat," Elissa Slotkin, a top Pentagon official, testified to Congress recently.

Politicians in Baghdad are haggling over formation of a unity government that can fulfill the mission outlined by Slotkin. By custom, the top three jobs are parceled out to the three factions.

Last week, Kurdish politician Fouad Massoum was named the new president of Iraq by Parliament. His selection followed lawmakers' election of a Sunni, Salim al-Jabouri, as speaker of Parliament.
Lawmakers have a long way to go before creating a broad government that would lessen tensions among the Kurds, Sunnis and Shiites. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, a Shiite, has been widely criticized within his country and the USA for limiting Sunni participation in his government and empowering Shiite militias that have targeted Sunnis during his eight-year rule. Al-Maliki is fighting to stay in office for a new four-year term.

One key to holding Iraq together is convincing the Kurds, who have long sought an independent state, to remain part of the central government. The Obama administration is trying to convince Kurdish leaders to remain part of Iraq.

"Without the Kurds, you're going to have a struggle with all Sunni Arabs against an Iranian-backed Shiite rump state," said James Jeffrey, a former U.S. ambassador to Iraq.

The Kurds have seized on the offensive by the radical Sunnis to further assert their independence. Kurdish forces have occupied territory abandoned by Iraq's army, attempted to sell oil without Baghdad's approval and announced plans for a referendum on independence.

"Division is the only solution, provided that this division should be consensual," said Barzo Ibrahim, a civil engineer in Irbil, in Kurdistan. "This is the most difficult part of the task."

The Kurds have the best chance of survival should they break away from Iraq's central government. They have created an oasis of political stability in the north, fueled by their own oil reserves and protected by one of the most disciplined fighting forces in the region, the peshmerga.

The Kurds have used the crisis to expand their control over oil-rich Kirkuk in the north by taking over positions from Iraq's army when it retreated in the face of attacks from Islamic militants. It's not clear whether the Kurds will withdraw should the crisis subside.

"They are making the most of the current tactical situation," said Mark Kimmit, a retired Army brigadier general and former State Department official with extensive experience in Iraq.

"They achieved on the ground what they were unable to achieve politically, by moving into positions abandoned by the Iraqi security forces," he said.

The Kurdish regional government has begun pumping oil from the Kirkuk field into its own network, so it can sell it independently through its pipeline into Turkey, according to the Iraq Oil Report, which covers the industry. Baghdad considers the move illegal.

The Kurds have said Iraq's central government hasn't fulfilled its commitment to support the regional government's budget, leaving the government with no choice but to sell its own oil.

Baghdad still has control over the bulk of Iraq's oil wealth. The Kurdish region produces about 220,000 barrels per day, compared with about 2.6 million in the Shiite south.

The Sunnis, whose power center is in western Iraq, have little in the way of resources to fall back on. Their anger against al-Maliki's Shiite-dominated government has driven many to support the Islamic State.

While the government's forces are in disarray, al-Maliki has turned again to Shiite militias to help provide security, further heightening sectarian tensions.

Iraq has long had sectarian clashes and divisions. The Sunni minority held power for centuries until the United States ousted Saddam, a Sunni. Iraq's mostly Sunni Baath Party, which ruled Iraq for decades, ruthlessly suppressed Shiites and Kurds.

Some Iraqis, such as Omar Mohammed, a dentist in Diyala in eastern Iraq, see a splintered Iraq as the only solution after so many episodes of sectarian bloodshed.

"I would accept any solution to stop the bloodshed," he said, "even if it was a confederation or division."


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Babylon the Great

Since September of 2011 I have been blogging about the dinar "investment", exposing frauds, reporting on pumper lies, and debunking guru rubbish.  When I started writing the expectation of a historic windfall to speculators was palpable, and very few seemed willing to jump on board with me, but slowly the sentiments have turned until now I truly believe the trend has reversed itself.  People are getting facts rather than hype, and are waking up to reality by the tens of thousands. 

Among the holdouts though, are the innumerable devotees who are convinced that this big RV will happen despite all of the numbers, facts, and documentation that I (or any other guru-buster) provide.  The reason is usually this ..... Iraq is the location of the ancient city of Babylon, and they have been told that Babylon must be rebuilt in order for bible prophecy to be fulfilled.  In order for that to happen, Iraq needs a valuable currency, so the dinar must revalue.   

With that reasoning in mind, I'd like to approach this subject from a different angle.  Why do people believe that Babylon must be rebuilt?  The answer in most cases is remakably similar to the situation with the dinar - GURUS!  You see, the church world is crawling with self-professed experts on bible prophecy who have proven to be wrong time and time again.

In 1970 Hal Lindsey wrote a book entitled "The Late, Great, Planet Earth" which ignited an incredible interest in bible prophecy by addressing current events and stating that they were somehow linked to bible prophecy.  This was the height of the cold war and the nuclear arms race, and people were on edge about the possibility of mutually assured destruction from a nuclear conflict.  That book went on to sell 30 million copies, and prompted dozens of imitators who attempted to cash in on the popularity of the topic. 

Unfortunately the book was full of misinterpretations, misconceptions, and just plain bad theology.  For example, Lindsey stated that the Soviet Union would be the empire of the antichrist.  Well the Soviet Union collapsed a quarter of a century ago.  He also stated his belief that Jesus would return by 1988 because in Matthew 24:32 Jesus said "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

Lindsey claimed that a biblical generation was 40 years and the modern nation of Israel was created in 1948, so he concluded that 1988 was the cutoff date.  His subsequent book "Countdown to Armageddon" included his belief that the 1980s would see unprecedented tribulation and international chaos.  In fact the global economy did quite well in the 1980s, and the decade ended with the collapse of the Soviet Union. 

I'm not trying to pick on Hal Lindsey here.  There are plenty of other bible prophecy teachers who have an equally poor track record, but I don't think anybody was more influential in embedding these misconceptions into the minds of evangelicals. Having said that, Hal Lindsey was never one to take the rebuilding of Babylon to mean modern day Iraq.  He always subscribed to the theory that the Babylon of bible prophecy is the revived Roman Empire, which would make the city of Rome the modern Babylon.  In fact many bible prophecy teachers have concluded that the prophetic references to Babylon in the New Testament were referring to Rome, and with good reason.  Peter referred to Rome as Babylon in his first epistle. 

From Wikipedia:

"In 1 Peter 5:13 Babylon is designated as the place from which that Epistle was written, but this has traditionally been interpreted as an example of the figurative sense of "Babylon", as a metaphor for Rome. Peter is believed to have spent the last years of his life in Rome."

Others have taken the view that Babylon is a reference to Jerusalem, and still others consider it to be a reference to New York City or Wall Street to represent the world's financial system.  Some have no concrete view on who Babylon is, but they insist that it will not be the literal city of Babylon.  Others however, insist that these references to Babylon are to be taken literally.   

As you can see there is no consensus on how to interpret the references to Babylon.  But let's just assume for the sake of argument that the references are to be taken literally.  Does that mean that this is being fulfilled today with the GOI and the dinar?  Couldn't things change drastically?  Suppose the recent incursion of ISIS into Iraq is a precursor to a revamping of Iraq and its currency.  Or suppose the GOI recovers and fends off the radicals.  They could still replace the IQD with a new dinar as they have stated they will on numerous occasions.  You see, even a literal interpretation of the references to Babylon doesn't mean that the IQD will go up in value. 

It's a bad idea to invest money based upon the interpretation of bible prophecy by so-called prophecy experts.  Just as with the dinar, there are prophecy teachers who are confusing and misleading people for their own gain. 

Recently noted prophecy authors Perry Stone, Sid Roth, and John Hagee were promoting the "Blood Moon" theory on the lunar eclipse.  This theory is thoroughly debunked in the video below.

Perry Stone claims to have studied the bible for 80,000 hours.  He's 54 years old, so let's assume that he started studying at the tender age of 10.  That's 44 years.  If we divide 80,000 hours by 44 years we come up with 1818 hours a year.  Divide that by 365 and you get about 5 hours a day every day for 44 years.  That include school days, work days, sick days, holidays ... you name it.  And that's assuming that he started at 10.  Does this sound like a guru exagerration to you?
John Hagee is a very controversial figure.  Among other things he claims that terrorists will disable the electric grid in the US with an electromagneticpulse bomb. 
Both of these guys have sold millions of copies of their books that are full of hype, fearmongering, and bad theology.  I could name several others who have capitalized (literally) on the popularity of this topic, but suffice it to say that in my opinion 90% of what you hear from bible prophecy "experts" is bunk. 
I've said all along that you should do your own research on the dinar rather than listening to gurus.  Well now I will say the same thing regarding bible prophecy teachers.  I know that bible prophecy seems confusing at first, but I promise you with a little effort you can start to make sense of it.  For that matter all of your spiritual needs are too important to entrust to some spiritual guru.  It's okay to learn what you can from bible teachers, but do your own research to see if their teaching stands up.  After awhile you'll be amazed at all of the religious BS you've uncovered. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Guru Updates

Just thought it would be fun to let everybody who is still paying attention to dinar events know what the gurus are saying, now that Iraq is in such dire straits.


7-7-2014   Kaperoni    Article: "Political blocs warns of blocking the formation of the government for "a long time" because of the insistence of Maliki confirms: Star is not the most likely candidate" Maliki has set the stage...stating he will not give up the right to a 3rd term which is really saying.."I am not leaving no matter what" unless toes up. The reality is everyone...nobody wants to admit it, but this is a real bad situation...not only for Iraq but for us as investors...when these types of events happen (terrorists taking over a province) or Maliki (refusing to leave)...the end result is not only an escalation in violence but the destruction of years of hard work rebuilding the infrastructure.  The [longer] this continues the more damage is done. And this is a setback. In reality, If Maliki squats, and the violence escalates we could be looking at a year or more to restore what had been accomplished prior. I wish there was better news..but this is not good news and we all need to be aware and should watch it closely as it is significant to our investment. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping for the best!
Some of my readers get mad at me because I don't come down on Kap any more than I do, but this is a good example of why.  Although we obviously disagree on the potential of the dinar as an investment, I will at least give honour where honour is due.  Kap is one of the very few gurus willing to point out the risk and obvious negative circumstances investors face.


This guy hasn't been right about anything in the three yeas I've been blogging, but he might get this one right.  Nothing in Iraq is ever done in a timely fashion.  As for the swift movement, maybe if we send them a shipment of prune juice.

7-6-2014  wmawhite   It appears to only support Maliki has is within the SoL...the rest of the NA don't want him, the Sunnis don't want him, the Kurds don't want him...and he bought a $3 million home for his family within the last 3 weeks in Qatar...maybe he knows.

Funny how nobody wants Maliki but they can't seem to get rid of the guy.  People have been saying that Maliki is history for as long as I've known about Maliki, and he's still there.  Don't hold your breath waiting for his exit.

7-6-2014 Tlar    There is a lot of confusion going on now with some articles offering hope then other articles saying there are disputes within the coalition and even more saying they won't be ready. I feel very comfortable that this is the finest snow job I have ever been witness to. The intention of which is to keep the SOL and Maliki in the dark. IMO they are ready this time just as Allawi stated a couple of days ago. With all the confusion being spread, the SOL has no clue how to react or plan. That's exactly the way it is supposed to be IMO. Keep them guessing and then lower the "boom". Walk in and vote them into oblivion and quickly leave. We will just have to see on Tuesday whether what have been witnessing in the press is just smoke.

As I pointed out recently tlar is way out there in lala land.  As we now see the press is far more reliable than gurus like tlar.

7-6-2014 Hub   ... have three close very close people that know more than we do...real...time business currency business info and they were in on the kuwait rv and they know the talk and talk the walk...the real information is the dinar has been revalued.   two major contacts, yes. ...some of my people are all oil people in iraq, iran, kuwait, saudi, and the other mid east oil people...these people are a special contact which is a currency broker, made a killing on the revaluation of the kuwait dinar  ..... the dinar has had a value for 200 years and will retain the 1955 it was $2.55 and in 1990 it was $3.22. ...the main outlook is the dinar will has too to maintain the history...and so we are waiting for it to happen. i dont know what it will revalue at...

A common flaw in the thinking of dinar investors and gurus is that a currency has a natural value that it gravitates toward, kind of like with gasses such as helium rising above oxygen, or chlorine settling below oxygen.  But currencies don't have a "natural" value.  They have a value that is determined by the unique history, money supply, and GDP of the country that they represent.  China has a huge economy but their currency is valued at around 16 cents, yet smaller countries like Bahrain with a GDP of only about $25 billion have a currency worth about $2.50.  Nothing causes depreciation of a currency more than war, and countries like Germany, Japan, Vietnam, and Iraq have currencies that depreciated in value because of war.  Germany redenominated to bring their value back, but Japan and Vietnam left their currency valued very low and just went on with life.  If Iraq decided to bing their currency's value back to where it was over 30 years ago then they will do it just like Germany did, with a redenomination or "lop". 


7-6-2014   Chattel  -  The Kurds had announced in advance their intention to leave after being sworn in if there was no declaration of the PM nominee in advance...there is a procedural "game" being played out between the SLC and the National Alliance and the anti - Maliki forces are watching it closely. BUT, who can know what is "in play", Kurdish independence, oil sales, or does any of this have any effect upon our liquidity event? there is no "RV manual", this is all " unploughed " ground.

Unploughed [sic] ground?  I thought Kuwait RV'd?  I thought Germany RV'd?  I thought Iraq was going to create millionaires just like those two did?  LOL!!!  Chattels is right, an RV that creates millionaires has never occurred, and for one simple reason - it doesn't make sense.  Why would a country want their currency to go up substantially in value thereby making it more expensive for other countries to do business with them?

But all of this was topped off by Breitling's rambling geopolitical history lecture where he claimed that Hitler devalued the deutsche mark, that Donald Rumsfeld said that the US sold Saddam WMD, that the US put Saddam in charge as a buffer against Iran, and that Tulsa brings in more money than LA.  A few minutes with Google will reveal that Hitler died three years before the introduction if the deutsche mark, that Donald Rumsfeld never said anything remotely like "we sold WMD to Iraq", that Saddam came up through the ranks of the Baath party in Iraq and was in fact the leader of Iraq before our ally the Shah was deposed in Iran, and that LA's GDP is roughly $750 billion while Tulsa's is roughly $50 billion.  (LA's population is roughly 10 times that of Tulsa, so even going by GDP per capita the numbers don't favour Tulsa.) 

What better reminder does one need of the folly of following gurus?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Adam Montana's Take on the Crisis in Iraq

Recently "Adam Montana" sought to console his troubled minions with a word of encouragement about their "investment".  Below you will find a few of his comments followed by my commentary in bold.


Good morning everyone!
25th of June, 2014 - the situation in Iraq isn't one of peace
and tranquility just yet, but I get the feeling things are coming
to a head and it's not turning out that bad. Quite frankly, I feel
that if things were to take a drastic turn for the worst we would
be seeing it by now.
Not turning out that bad?  Excuse me??!!?  Their second largest city has been taken over by a terrorist group called ISIS that also stole millions from the bank there to further fund their organization.  So many Iraqi troops deserted that Maliki had to call on Iraqi citizens to join the fight.  Take a look at this map and tell me things aren't that bad.  About 1/3 of the country has been overrun by these militants.  

So here's the current scoop. ISIL is holding on and making waves
still, but it's starting to look like they are stretching themselves
thin and that's never a good thing for an attacking party. Jordan
is aligning forces with Iraq, and it makes sense for them to do so
because if they allow Iraq to fall victim to these attacks, they are
not too far from suffering the same fate. Other countries (such as
the US) are being slow to join, but it's getting apparent that Iraq
will get some help sooner or later, and likely before anything can
happen that would destroy Iraq's recent progress.
I got news for you, pal.  Iraq's progress has already been destroyed.  Ten years' worth of political progress establishing a democratic presence in the region is virtually dead in the water.  Listen to these quotes from Kurdish president Barzani. 
“Iraq is obviously falling apart"
“The time is here for the Kurdistan people to determine their future and the decision of the people is what we are going to uphold.”
“Now we are living [in] a new Iraq, which is different completely from the Iraq that we always knew, the Iraq that we lived in ten days or two weeks ago.”
“After the recent events in Iraq, it has been proved that the Kurdish people should seize the opportunity now – the Kurdistan people should now determine their future.”

These are not the words of a man who thinks that this is just a temporary setback for the new Iraq and the GOI.  These are the words of a man who sees that Kurdistan has been a good sport and given the new Iraq a chance, and now sees that it has failed and the time has come for Kurdish independence.   Have a listen to this discussion on NPR with four experts on the region.

You would think that with all this madness and chaos and "OMG the
sky is falling!" going on over there, the currency would be plummeting
back to the 4000:1 rate it was at a decade ago… but that's not the case.
In fact, the stability was only in question for less than a week, when the
dinar "wobbled".

The IQD was never valued at 4000:1.  That was the street value of the old Saddam dinar.  The IQD has never been valued at more than about 1500:1

Turki / Central Bank states that despite the current events, the dinar is
and will remain stable. Not only that, they have the ability to maintain
any rate without a roof. (That says "float" to me!)

Surely you jest, Wolfy.  The IQD would plummet if it were allowed to freely float.  A country facing the possibility of secession and war with such deep sectarian division doesn't exactly inspire a lot of international confidence.  And the current exchange regime that the dinar is on is a managed float, which means that they manage it in order to maintain exchange rate stability.  How does one profit from a policy like that?
(Yes, all this in spite of the "doom and gloom" the lame-stream media
would have you believe!)

Yeah, right!  This is all just misinformation from the media who is owned by the cabal.  Unfortunately the gullible are likely to lap this up and hold onto their dinar, but thankfully many are wising up and moving on.

People like Adam Montana will never come out publicly as negative on the dinar "investment" for one simple reason.  They need people to believe in order to keep their revenue stream going.  Take if from me, there's not much money in telling people the truth about the dinar.



Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Happy 4th of July!

The other day I was browsing through dinar sites and caught a glipse of this article. 


Uncomfortable Independence Day Questions

Here comes another Fourth of July - a good time to ask some serious questions – and ponder just how “free” we really are:

* Why is it ok to celebrate violent resistance to a government by our wig-wearing ancestors, but “extremist” to say anything negative about government today?
* If people can’t be trusted to govern themselves, how is it that some people can be trusted to govern others?
* What’s so great about taxation with representation?
* Has anyone ever showed you the “social contract”?
* If we’re so “free,” why can’t we even celebrate our “freedom” by lighting off a few firecrackers and bottle rockets in our own backyards? They’re illegal in most states these days for ordinary citizens to even possess – let alone use.
* If the Constitution is the supreme law of the land, why do the “interpretations” of that law by judges supersede the plain language of the Constitution?
* Why do civilian cops have military ranks? Sergeants, captains – even four-star “generals” . . . some of them have military flair (AKA “fruit salad”) too … as if they’d “served” in a war somewhere.
* If it’s wrong for me (an individual) to do something aggressively violent, how does it become right when a group does the same thing?
* Is morality merely a question of numbers and percentages?
* Does calling a thing by a different name change the nature of the thing? Does a cat become “not-cat” by dint of calling it “not-cat”? If it’s still a cat – no matter what I call it – how is it that taking someone else’s money (theft) becomes not-theft when it’s called “taxation”?
* If abortion is acceptable because it’s “the woman’s body” and thus, “her right to choosearrow-10x10.png”- how come a man can’t choose to do what he likes with his body? Like choosing not to wear a helmet while riding his motorcycle, for instance?
* How come there are no “senile citizen checkpoints”?
* If the “right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed,” why are the people forced to get the government’s permission to keep and bear arms?
* How is it “reasonable” to stop people en masse and at random, and force them to submit to an interrogation/search?
* Why are we forced to transact our business with privately owned banks? Why is it illegal for us to exchange value for value among ourselves?
* If you have the right to not incriminate yourself, why is it considered a criminal act to decline to fill out a federal tax form?
* Did anyone ever ask you for your “consent” to be governed? What if you do not consent?
* Why is an officer’s“safety” more important than your safety?
* If the “civil” war was fought to free the slaves, how come the commanding general of the Union Army, Ulysses S. Grant, owned a black man while he waged war on the South? (He freed the poor man eventually.)
* If corporations are “persons,” how come you can never get one on the phone – much less put “him” in prison when he defrauds you?
* Why is it ok for big cartels like Monsanto to sell genetically modified foods on their say-so that it’s ok, but a “crime” for a local farmer to sell unpasteurized milk?
* If slavery is against the law, why is it we’re compelled to work for the benefit of others?
* Shouldn’t everywhere – anywhere – be a “free speech zone”?
* If you own your home, why must you pay rent to the government every year in order to be allowed to continuearrow-10x10.png to live there?
* How come other people choosing to have sex – and choosing to have kids – imposes a financial obligation on you that’s enforceable at gunpoint, but choosing to adopt a cat and figuring out how you’ll feed him and pay for his bills is entirely your own problem?
* Why don’t school busses have to have seat belts?
* If guns are so dangerous, how come politicians are surrounded by cordons of heavily armed men?
* How did the good ol’ USA become the “homeland”?
* If you believe it’s ok to fight off a mugger, how come it’s not ok to fight off a tax collector?
* If only “Congress may declare war,” how come we’ve been “at war” (on “terror”) for going on 13 years without a congressional declaration of war?
* Why can’t DMV (or IRS) “customers” say “no thanks” to the services offered?
* How can health care be a right if someone else is forced to provide it?
* Do you suppose motorcycles would be “allowed” if they were a new inventionarrow-10x10.png?
* If you’re a free man, why must you obtain permission to travel, marry or work?
* How is eminent domaining a man off his land any different than simply stealing his land?
* Why are we forced to do business with, feed, house – even hang out – with people we’d avoid if we were free to do so?

Answer – hell, even read – these questions and you’ll come to grips with just how unfree we actually are this Farce of July. Better to stay home, wear black and mourn what we’ve lost – what some of us have freely given away – than to go through the sad pantomime of celebrating our enslavement.
Throw it in the Woods?


This strikes me as talking points from one of those "patriot" groups who think that we're a step away from living in a dictatorship or a police state because there have been restrictions placed on our freedoms.  In reality, our freedoms have always had restrictions. 
Nearly a century ago there was a case where a defendant named Charles Schenck claimed the right to freedom of speech in handing out leaflets discouraging people from submitting for the draft during WWI.  Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes stated that avoiding the draft was a criminal offense, and that encouraging such a criminal offense during a time of war presented a clear and present danger and could be punished, thereby placing established limitations on freedom of speech.  In his opinion he used the example of falsely yelling "fire" in a crowded theater to illustrate how freedom of speech is not absolute. 
People who claim that we're losing our right to freedom of speech overlook the fact that we have more rights today in this area than we did a century ago.  Can you imagine somebody today being prosecuted for voicing opposition to the draft?
People complain about taxes, but the truth is taxes are lower across the board, and the top marginal tax rate today is less than half of what it was during the 70s.
People complain about their 2nd amendment rights being taken away, but gun ownership is still legal.  True, there are restrictions on gun ownership, but there are also restrictions on vehicle ownership and operation.  We don't complain about that because we understand the need for public safety provided by those restrictions.  Why should it be easier to own and operate a gun than it is to own and operate a vehicle?
My point is that many of these claims that our rights and freedoms are being taken away are based on perceptions, and not facts.  Having said that I'd now like to address a few of the points in the article.
  •  I don't hear anybody saying that it's extremist to say anything negative about our government.  I criticize the government all the time and I've never been called an extremist.
  • Of course nobody has ever seen the social contract, because it isn't a written contract.  It's a concept behind the relationship between the governmental authority and the citizen who gives up a certain amount of freedom in exchange for the services that the government provides.  We accept the contract without being conscious of its existence, but if it didn't exist we would certainly notice because we would have anarchy. 
  • Fireworks are deemed illegal in many states because they are dangerous.  DUH!  Sure, they're fun, but talk to your local fire department about their experiences at New Year's and July 4.  Does that mean that we don't live in a free country?  Of course not.  It means that we're tired of irresponsible people posing a threat to our neighborhoods with fireworks and we've passed laws to protect our property.
  • The "plain language" of the constitution isn't always so plain.  For example, the 8th amendment says that cruel and unusual punishment isn't allowed.  Now how do we interpret that?  Is capital punishment cruel?  Some people think so, and as a result we've tried to make it painless.  It's certainly severe, regardless of whether or not you consider it cruel.  But what about unusual?  It's definitely not unusual, because it has been practiced for thousands of years in virtually every civilization.  So does the expression "cruel and unusual punishment" refer to punishment that is either cruel or unusual, or both cruel and unusual?  (We have the same dilemma with the wording for impeachment because of "high crimes and misdemeanors")  If it refers to "either" then perhaps we should do away with capital punishment, but if it refers to both then we shouldn't necessarily end it because while it might be considered cruel by some people it certainly isn't unusual.  Language by its very nature is often vague and subject to interpretation.  The founding fathers knew that and that's why they built into our constitution a mechanism to deal with this issue.  Another reason we have judges to interpret the constitution is to provide checks and balances within out government.  For example, if congress passes a law that is unconstitutional, we have a mechanism in place to address that called judicial review.  The courts review the law and determine its constitutionality.  And if the court gets it wrong, their ruling can be reversed in the future by another court.  Such was the case with capital punishment.  For ten years there were no executions in the US, but prior court rulings were reversed and it resumed in 1977.
  • I don't see the connection between a woman having an abortion and a man wearing a helmet while riding a motorcycle.  Abortion is legal because of a Supreme Court ruling (which I don't agree with, by the way) and motorcycle laws are established by states.  A better argument in my opinion would be why should a woman have the right to terminate a pregnancy without the father's approval, but if she decides not to terminate the father can't force her to do so and then is required to provide for the child after it's born.  To me that is the inequity.  Still, how does that support the assertion that we don't live in a free country?
  • It's okay to fight off a mugger because they're breaking the law and presenting you with the threat of severe bodily harm or death.  It's not okay to fight off a tax collector because they're enforcing the law and there is no threat of bodily harm involved.

Okay, I think that's enough.  Basically this is just a good exercise in critical thinking.  What sounds good to some paranoid anti-government people when they first read through something like this fails to hold up under closer scrutiny.  The US is still a free country.  Are there restrictions on those freedoms?  Certainly there are, but we can still come and go as we please, and we can still criticize our government and vote to change our leadership if we don't approve of the job that they're doing.  For all of its faults the USA is still the greatest country in world history IMO, and hopefully will remain so for many years to come. 

Happy Independence Day!!!