Friday, November 03, 2006
Soon You Will Need Homeland Security Permission to Enter--Or Leave--the U.S. / A Comment on Central Banks
Thursday, November 2, 2006
Vol. 8 No. 219
In Today's Letter:
Comment: Permission to Leave the U.S.?
Sovereignty: The Fences Between Us
Wealth: Con Artists At the Central Banks
Now You Need Permission to
Exit or Enter the Country?
Today's comment is by Mark Nestmann, our Wealth Preservation & Tax Consultant and President of The Nestmann Group.
Dear A-Letter Reader:
Forget no-fly lists. If Uncle Sam gets its way, beginning on Jan. 14, 2007, we'll all be on no-fly lists, unless the government gives us permission to leave-or re-enter-the United States.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (HSA) has proposed that all airlines, cruise lines--even fishing boats--be required to obtain clearance for each passenger they propose taking into or out of the United States.
It doesn't matter if you have a U.S. passport--a “travel document” that now, absent a court order to the contrary, gives you a virtually unqualified right to enter or leave the United States, any time you want. When the DHS system comes into effect next January, if the agency says “no” to a clearance request, or doesn't answer the request at all, you won't be permitted to enter--or leave--the United States.
Consider what might happen if you're a U.S. passport holder on assignment in a country like Saudi Arabia. Your visa is about to expire, so you board your flight back to the United States. But wait! You can't get on, because you don't have permission from the HSA. Saudi immigration officials are on hand to escort you to a squalid detention center, where you and others who are now effectively “stateless persons” are detained, potentially indefinitely, until their immigration status is sorted out.
Why might the HSA deny you permission to leave--or enter--the United States? No one knows, because the entire clearance procedure would be an administrative determination made secretly, with no right of appeal. Naturally, the decision would be made without a warrant, without probable cause and without even any particular degree of suspicion. Basically, if the HSA decides it doesn't like you, you're a prisoner--either outside, or inside, the United States, whether or not you hold a U.S. passport.
The U.S. Supreme Court has long recognized there is a constitutional right to travel internationally. Indeed, it has declared that the right to travel is "a virtually unconditional personal right." The United States has also signed treaties guaranteeing “freedom of travel.” So if these regulations do go into effect, you can expect a lengthy court battle, both nationally and internationally.
Think this can't happen? Think again. . . it's ALREADY happening. Earlier this year, HSA forbade airlines from transporting an 18-year-old native-born U.S. citizen, back to the United States. The prohibition lasted nearly six months until it was finally lifted a few weeks ago.
Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union are two countries in recent history that didn't allow their citizens to travel abroad without permission. If these regulations go into effect, you can add the United States to this list.
For more information on this proposed regulation, see http://hasbrouck.org/IDP/IDP-APIS-comments.pdf
MARK NESTMANN, Wealth Preservation &
Tax Consultant on behalf of
The Sovereign Society
What's Really Going On at the Central Banks
Central banks are usually the worst con-men in the world. Case in point: the tough talk on inflation and interest rates in May resulted in a nosedive for world markets.
I personally believe the Fed and the Europeans purposefully "talked down" the markets in early May because gold was running like wildfire, hitting a 26-year high of $731 an ounce. If you're a major central bank, you don't want to see high gold prices. By smashing down the gold price down to where it stands today ($600 an ounce), the Feds bought some time.
But despite the tough talk on remaining vigilant on inflation, the Americans, Europeans, and Canadians are still printing scads of money, creating an abundance of credit in the process. This explains, in great detail, why financial assets are still soaring after a major correction in May and June. It also explains why gold has probably bottomed around $600 an ounce.
Over the next 12 months, you're going to see even higher stock prices. Bonds will also do well, but not better than stocks. And commodities, which bottomed two weeks ago, will resume their bull market that started in Q4 2001. But let me give you a piece of advice: Just in case the housing market collapses, or just in case a major financial debacle occurs in 2007, make sure you have some gold, U.S. T-bonds, and money-market funds. The big risks for the market this year and into 2007 are housing, the auto sector, and a rogue or several rogue hedge funds.
If the Fed cuts rates over the next several months, which I'm betting has better than a 75% chance of happening, then I'll grow even more bullish on these sectors. Lower short-term rates might not deter a financial panic, but it will lower the risks as more liquidity is created. I'm betting (and hoping) on lower rates in 2007.
ERIC ROSEMAN, Investment Director
THE SOVEREIGN SOCIETY OFFSHORE A-LETTER
* Bob Bauman, Editor * Kathlyn Von Rohr, Managing Editor
* Eric Roseman, Investment Director
* Erika Nolan, Managing Director
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