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OT: On cursive

While flicking through the twittermachine a few minutes ago, trying desperately to avoid writing up a boring part of the Weekly, I came across this report from Raw Story that tells how the US State of Tennessee is bringing back cursive writing lessons for schoolchildren, as from next year. It was a real WTF moment for me so I picked up the camera, found the first of my youngest kid's schoolbooks I saw, opened a page randomly and took a snap. Here it is:

The subject matter isn't that important, nor is the fact that it's in Spanish rather than English (if you care enough, it's part of a project subject she's been doing about the formation of the earth, what's in the interior of the planet, how old the earth is, how the oceans formed, etc). My youngest has stacks of books filled with the same kind of writing and what you see up there is the rule, not the exception. And before you ask, yes she knows how to type as well because they teach her that at her school.

She's seven years old.

That Raw Story article left me dumbfounded. Are you guys up there seriously that stupid? As part of the gotta-give-the-other-side part to the report (another thing: whatever happened to good healthy bias in reporting anyway, you bunch of whussbags?) we get to hear from the education expert personage who says...
"Dedicating teaching time to cursive could take time away from touch-typing, a more important skill these days, she said."
Could, eh? Why on earth should you replace lessons in handwriting for lessons in touch-typing, hasn't it occurred to you that both may be useful? But it's not just that, it's the way cursive lessons teach wider-ranging and useful fine motor skills, as well as page organization, internal editing, oh man ,the list goes on and on, not to mention the comprehension skills of being able to read other people's cursive.

Normally you can class me in the place from where the progressives speak (such a butt-ugly moniker, but it'll do for today) so it's kind of weird to find myself sticking up for the lawmaking beaks of Tennessee of all places (for one thing, that lesson my girl wrote up on the origins and ages of the planet may cause a few raised eyebrows among the more strident there, but let's leave that one for another day) but that's what's happening here and today. I have my conservative head on, I'm telling you things ain't what they used to be, I'm getting all fist-wavy about the news (to me) that you idiots up there are handing your abject idiocy to the next generation by not teaching them how to fucking write correctly. Assholes.

So go Tennessee, learn em joined-up and learn 'em good. You're right, them there yankees and their new-fangled ways need to know it.

Zlatan's goal, ten years on

Football historians among you will smile and also say "Is it really ten years? My stars time flies!" or something like that when you hear that the 10th anniversary of Zlatan Ibrahimovic's unforgettable goal for Ajax came up yesterday. And to commemorate the date, Ajax released this Youtube with some commentary (in English) from the man himself.

A slice of peak sporting beauty. Enjoy this minute and 24 seconds.


The Friday OT: Karl Richter plays JS Bach Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor (BWV 582)

Recorded in 1969.

As the poster of the Youtube explains, the original sound quality of the recording was poor, so it's been replaced by another audio-only recording of Karl Richter playing the same piece. A necessary sleight of hand that takes nothing away from the absolute drop dead freakin' awesomeness of this week's Friday OT.

"Bach is best"
Organ Morgan, Under Milk Wood, Dylan Thomas, 1954 

Regarding James West of The Midas Letter

I was today reminded of this. So I'm reminding you too.

"I am a geo, working up north. A few years back I spent a regrettable half-day with "guru" James West, who at the time was a consultant in how to formulate a strategy for optimally pumping a junior mining stock. His method mainly involved making sure the headline for every press release always contained large numbers - the maximum possible for grade, width, whatever. He did not seem at all interested in any geological or logistical aspects of the project. Just how to manipulate the stock price upward (or keep it up) over a period of several months by a planned sequence of news releases, within the context of a good overall story. Anyways, the guy is a total ass. Very rude, obnoxious, aggressive and with a ridiculous amount of phony-seeming macho. He knows very little about exploration or mining, just about telling "fairy" tales about junior companies."

UPDATE: Canadian readers, try to access the above and you'll have little joy. Try this link instead for the original.

Full text of the Janet Yellen Jackson Hole speech

Right here on this link, click if you want to read it. The shorter version is:

"Tightening? Not a clue dude, it's this jobs thing, it's kinda tough to call, so we're going to make it up as we go along. K tx bye."

Chart of the day is...


Bulls in charge, stomping over bears, kickin' ass, takin' names. Perhaps not all is right in the world, but on balance there's enough to be happy about things.


Video of the Ubinas Volcano explosion today in South Peru

Right here:

Ubinas is one of the more active volcanoes in the Southern Andes chain and it's been rumbling for a while, but this afternoon's pop (that started at 3:36pm local time, 4:36pm EDT) was much more than a rumble, as you'll see. It threw ash 4,200m up into the air and caused a long, noisy earth tremor felt 10km from ground zero.

IKN challenges three nominees to The Mining Company Ice Bucket Challenge (with a twist, obviously)

So you get to thinking on what sort of things happen to others and how the ricos and famosos would react if they had to go through a dose of the same medicine, as it were. Except in this case, no ice.
  • Mr. Chuck Jeannes, CEO of Goldcorp (NEM), in light of the plethora of well-documented events* at this wholly owned mine that have poisoned both local people and their agricultural lands, do you accept The Cyanide Mixed With Arsenic And Other Heavy Metals Bucket Challenge?

*nice bit of SEO guys, getting your BS rebuttal article top of Google

Jemi Fibre (JFI.v): The Bobby Genovese scam delivers news, right on time and M.O.

Here's this morning's news, here's a screenshot:

Brent Lokash, you say? Oh that's interesting. Anyone remember him as the CEO of Clearly Canadian, the scam Bobby G ran on the world in 2006? That's a famous scam and this one's heading in the exact same direction, but you may also note that Lokash and Genovese played scam-the-sucker via Strata Minerals too (went to $4.20, now pennies, and of course the typical P+D pattern).

As for today's news, note the classic bullshit pump ingredients of uncertain terms (there's no done deal yet, this is LOI), high interest rate, facility "due on demand" (i.e. debt holder can pull rug from under equity holders at any given moment), plus deliberately vague statements on what JFI plan to do with the cash. 

Chart of the day is...

Fortunately I don't care. Because it's only money, it's nothing important.


Breaking: Antofagasta (ANTO.L) hires Diego Hernandez as its new CEO

New just in: The ex-head of Codelco (resigned in 2012) has taken over at ANTO.L

The Jemi Fibre (JFI.v) pump and dump scam: How we know Bobby Genovese is behind it

That's easy: As long as you know where to look there's a whole bunch of paperwork to prove it. Funnily enough, he hasn't been smart enough to cover his own tracks on this one, as even the ego-massage pump pieces in which he loves to feature have a trail of breadcrumbs. Take for example this obsequious Q&A in South Florida's 'The Business Journal' which has this at the bottom of things:

BG Capital Group of Companies
The group has two main affiliates, which are based in Barbados, although BG has office in Plantation, Boca Raton, Nassau, Los Angeles, Toronto and Vancouver.
BG Capital Group Ltd.
A merchant bank specializing in small- and mid-cap investment services, such as mergers and acquisitions. It is also the largest shareholder in Clearly Canadian Beverage Corp., which has filed a plan with bankruptcy court in Canada to go private.
BG Capital Management Corp.
Owns 100 percent of:
Neptune Society, cremation services, Plantation
American DataSource, a trust administrative service provider to the funeral service field, Houston
BG Capital Real Estate Holdings
Vancouver International Polo Team, which also has a polo club in Argentina
The Little School House, an early learning center, Nassau
Owns 75 percent of:
Neptune Memorial Reef, an underwater memorial park off Key Biscayne
Owns 50 percent of:
Jemi Holdings, a British Columbia land company

M&M Engineering, St. John’s, Newfoundland
Tamarack North Ltd., builders and engineers, Port Carling, Ontario
Bari Builders, Pompano Beach
Nautic Distributors Ltd., a watersports products company, Richmond, British Columbia

And when you start looking around, you see that Jemi Fibre (JFI.v) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Jemi Holdings. Which means he's the biggest shareholder of the public company and in effect, as of last month when this pump began, as well as selling shares to you suckers he's also lending money to himself at exorbitant rates of interest...
"...the company (JFI.v) announced that it has completed a senior secured debt financing pursuant to which the company issued notes to investment funds managed by Vertex One Asset Management (Vertex) for $11 million. The Vertex loan has an upfront fee of 5%, a term of 6 months and bears an interest rate of 17% per annum. The company has the option to renew the loan for an additional 6 month term and during the second term the loan would bear an interest rate of 22%. Additionally, the company announced that it has completed an additional secured financing with BG Capital Group Ltd. for $5 million. The BG Capital loan is subordinate to the Vertex loan, has a term of 12 months and bears an interest rate of 22%."
...and by the way, another wildly amusing angle is that Vertex is his company too. We'll get to that one later.

Jemi Fibre (JFI.v) is just another one of the long, looong succession of Bobby G vehicles that only ever benefit Bobby Genovese. It will go the route of all his other P+D plays and leave you, dear greenhorn retail investor, wondering where your money went. The guy's a scumbag, avoid this stock like the plague.

Chart of the day is...

...copper, dailies:

Easily the most interesting bull/bear battle in the commods sector right now. If you're bullish (count me in) you're betting against Goldman Sachs' published position at the moment. Which probably means you're betting with the GS trading desks :-)


Argentina and the default: Errr...toldyaz

Here's what was in IKN on June 16th 2014 regarding Argentina and the default issue, two months ago and long before the supposed default happened:
Argentina will say:  
1)We're not in default  
2)We'll pay  
3)Only US isn't allowing us to pay  
4)Creditors line up at new window, we pay
And so far in this wild and wonderful affair we've checked off three of those calls:
1) Argentina never stops telling us
2) Ditto
3) Ditto.

So the only one of those that was missing to this point was number 4. Therefore here's what President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, in address to Argentine nation, said this evening:
Cristina Kirchner Announces a Law Bill to Pay Bond Holders in Argentina 
Via a taped TV message to the nation, she announces that she will send to Congress an initiative to "Remove the Bank of New York as agent" and to pay via the Argentina Banco de la Nación Continues here

Any further questions?

B2Gold $BTG ( The Clive needs to worry a little more about his shareholders, less about his own back pocket

And don't say IKN didn't warn you:

Hey TheClive, maybe just maybe the investment community isn't quite as stupid as you thought.

Working capital at Gran Colombia Gold (

Beats me why anyone should be worried about the liquidity at this one:

The fun starts in November, when the gold notes start coming due. We can only hope the creditors behave themselves, form an orderly queue and don't start squabbling over who gets paid first. Impressively, this thing still has a market cap of around $35m. That won't last, though.

Jemi Fibre (JFI.v): The latest Bobby Genovese pump and dump scam

What if I were to tell you...

...that Jemi Fibre (JFI.v) had a whole bunch of people fronting it, but when you peel back the curtain you find the person running the show is one Robert Genovese, aka Bobby G, a scammer and operator of pump and dump schemes with a track record of taking other people's money and keeping it all for himself like few others out there? Yes indeed, it's not just a loan from BG Capital that has Bobby G with skin in this game. He has his minions running the company, he personally owns big chunks of JFI.v shares via his third-party shells and he's currently selling them to you, suckers. 

And for those you need a reminder about this scumball and his M.O., just one of the many scams he's run recently was Liberty Silver and you can read all about that one on this previous IKN link. 

UPDATE: Dear Canadian readers: Having trouble with that last link? That's because James West of "The Midas Letter" and another complete scumball put a chilling effects order on it for Google Canada. That's because he was mentioned in the piece as one of the main protagonists of the pump scam around liberty silver. He also took payments for his role and never told the SEC about it, which is out and out illegal, so rather than admit his guilt he prefers to censor the internet so that you never find out about his scumbag ways. Try this link instead.

UPDATE 2: Re. that censored link to Canadians, Iwnattos over at Market Narrative has kindly picked up on the issue and on his post lists three links where you can read the Liberty Silver thing. He also provides a different example of how James West bullshits the world in this post. And yes, for a fact he took payment from Seafield for that scam, too.

Part two of this JFI.v scam track here

Chucapaca, then and now

How times change in the gold world.

Back on May 11th 2010, when the Chucapaca gold discovery in South Peru was announced to the world, 49% owner Buenaventura managed to get a U$2.10 pop on its share price from the razzle and the dazzle. It was already a U$32 stock, by the ned of the day it was nearly at $35 (it managed that number the next day). As BVN was running 254m shares at the time, it's fair to say that its 49% ownership of Chucapaca added half a billion dollars to the company market cap. Or if you like, the 5.6m oz AuEq resource at that time (which is now 6.1m oz) was valued by the neverwrong Mister Market at over a billion dollars.

Today, BVN bought out the 51% held by its JV partner Gold Fields (GFI) for $81m, plus a 1.5% NSR.

PS: In its 2013 annual report, Buenaventura filed that the holding company that owned Chucapaca (51% GFI/ 49% BVN at the time) had an asset value of U$139.44m and after accounting adjustments, the 49% owned by BVN was carried by the company at U$39.231m. In other words, at least the BVN CFO will be happy about this deal. Looks like a distressed sale decision by GFI.


Brazil cops could teach Ferguson cops a thing or two about summary executions of unarmed kids

This video, in Portuguese with English subtitles, comes from this excellent report from Insight Crime. In it you witness how Brazilian police pick up young kids off the streets, take them to a secluded woodland area and kill one of them (they actually thought they'd killed two, but by some miracle one survived). Here's an extract from the report, but the whole thing is...well, it's wow.
The officers kicked the boys to check they were dead before driving off, M said. In additional footage released later by Fantastico, Lima and Magalhaes discussed the killings.
"Two down," says Lima. "If we do this all week (it will) keep going down. We hit the target."

The video.

So don't do these things in front of people's houses, learn from the experts, Brazilian police have been quite literally getting away with murder for decades.

Gran Colombia Gold ( Seems legit

Here's the outlook section from the Gran Colombia Gold ( year end 2013 MD&A, the bit that tells us about its plans for 2014. Your humble scribe helps train the eye to the interesting bits via bold type and underlining

"The Company’s all-in sustaining cost averaged $1,322 per ounce in 2013. As a result of actions taken in 2013 and so far in 2014 to reduce production costs and G&A, improvements in head grades as the year progresses and continuing to keep sustaining capital expenditures to a minimum while the Pampa Verde project is completed, the Company expects its all-in sustaining costs for the full year in 2014 will average between $950 and $1,025. This includes an average total cash cost for the year of $850 to $900 per ounce, well below the average of $1,152 per ounce achieved in 2013, and G&A expenses of $65 to $80 per ounce, down from $108 per ounce in 2013. Sustaining capital expenditures, including a limited amount of exploration and geology spending at Segovia to support execution of the mine plan is expected to amount to approximately $3.4 million in 2014 and the all-in sustaining cost includes a provision of approximately $11 to $13 per ounce for environmental discharge fees at Segovia."

Here's how the all-in sustaining costs (AISC) and total cash costs have been getting on (and please note the cut-down Y-axis):

NB: Y-axis chopped at $1k/oz to show contrasts more easily, not to fool you

Or put another way, if's costs forecasts for the 2014 financial year as published on March 31st 2014 (a mere four and a half months ago) are to be successful, GCM will have to produce its gold at an AISC of $800/oz for the next two quarters just to squeak in at the upper limit of its guidance.

Could 'appen. Yeah guv, course it could 'appen. Wossa problem anyhow, innit?

Gotta love Serafino.

Chart of the day is...

...the gold/silver ratio, three years, which proves that silver's about to rally against gold and reclaim the 62X ratio point:

Because charts.

The IKN Weekly, out now

IKN275 has just been sent to subscribers. Beep beep.


Serafino Iacono is a popular guy all of a sudden

For some reason or another, IKN has attracted a big bunch of hits on this April 2012 post entitled "Gotta love Serafino Iacono" today. People coming in from all over the world to read it and all from exactly the same link.

Most interesting.

Lost in translation: The Bible

Around festivals and especially at the festive time of year you'll hear people telling you, "Peace on earth, goodwill toward men", or sometimes you get "good will towards men" or even the semi-homophonic "goodwill to all men". Which comes from the English King James Bible version of Luke. It's also a bad translation.

What the person who translated into English didn't understand, way back all those centuries ago, is that the original Latin from which they were translating, "Et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis" (if you know your Vivaldi Gloria you'll know that line, which is what I was listening to half an hour ago while writing up the Weekly and is why I stopped and wrote this random post apropos of nothing, thanks for asking now you know why) cannot be translated the way it's done in the KJB, even allowing for the often impressive leniency and flexibility of Latin and its possible connotations. That line can only be correctly translated as:

And peace on earth to men of good will.

And to clear up the loose ends, for what it's worth the Latin phrase that was incorrectly translated into English and the KJB comes from the Greek original (had to look that bit up) that's also translated the same way. In other words, The Bible doesn't give carte blanche to the world and goodwill to everyone no matter who they are, what they do or the way they think. Sorry folks, first you have to have good will, then and only then do you get your dose of peace on Earth. 

Moral: Members only.

Peru Presidential Polling: Ollanta gets a rebound

Not one that makes him popular, but one that takes him from plain bad to semi-bad. The 29% reading is up 8% from June, 4% from July and is credited to the cabinet re-shuffle. IPSOS has the number today.

As for the real President, the one that wasn't voted in, she got 32% this time.