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An interesting weekend OT read about the scam that is the "detox" diet movement, or industry, or just plain scam. Here's an extract:

“Let’s be clear,” says Edzard Ernst, emeritus professor of complementary medicine at Exeter University, “there are two types of detox: one is respectable and the other isn’t.” The respectable one, he says, is the medical treatment of people with life-threatening drug addictions. “The other is the word being hijacked by entrepreneurs, quacks and charlatans to sell a bogus treatment that allegedly detoxifies your body of toxins you’re supposed to have accumulated.” 
If toxins did build up in a way your body couldn’t excrete, he says, you’d likely be dead or in need of serious medical intervention. “The healthy body has kidneys, a liver, skin, even lungs that are detoxifying as we speak,” he says. “There is no known way – certainly not through detox treatments – to make something that works perfectly well in a healthy body work better.”
Read it all here, interesting to see hard science finally fighting back against this sham industry. And here's a comment left BTL by a reader who (apparently) knows the field:
I'm a postdoc health researcher and I specialise (usually) in nutrition, exercise and health, and I am relieved and heartened to see an article that tells it more or less like it is. 
A long time ago I used to shop in "health food shops", mainly because I was interested in foods but I think I was taken in by all these vague claims about herbs are good and toxins are in food and you must look for natural this and that. Having had 15-20 years now to look at the evidence, if anything I wish these places would be closed down. 90% of what they well is myth and placebo, the remainder is potentially harmful, having circumvented most or all of the safety tests that "conventional medicines" must pass. 
Ride a bike, cook from scratch, go easy on the booze. That's all you need to know really. Or did I just do myself out of a job?
I like that: "Ride a bike, cook from scratch, go easy on the booze". I'll add that with very slight variations that's what I've done in 2014. 


Rick Rule interviewed by Tekoa Da Silva

I was sent the link this evening and I kid you not, this is a very good interview. Highly recommended to anyone in the mining and junior mining investment world, with sharp insight into many corners of the sector. Link here.

The Friday OT: Massive Attack; Protection

Came the urge to listen to a bit of Faith No More midweek, which is why Stripsearch made it to the blog on Wednesday. And you listen to it and are impressed with the musicianship of the FNM gang, how they're not afraid to run with influences other than guitar based rock. And you hear the trip-hop in Stripsearch. And you think back. And you remember Protection. And you find it. And you fall in love all over again because everything about this song is of the most wonderful. And Tracey Thorn's voice, my lordy lord how great it is to be alive.

Then you notice it was released twenty years ago. Twenty. Seriously, it came out in October 1994. 

It's not the first time it's been a Friday OT and that doesn't matter. 

Bonus: The video is a work of art, one of the best ever.

Metanor (MTO.v): Thibaut Lepouttre is easy to please

That wonderful scam Metanor (MTO.v) filed its 3q14 numbers a few days ago, which of course was the usual barrel of laughs. But then yesterday things got even funnier because MTO's paid-for stock promo pushers at Caesar's Report released their take on the numbers. Analyst (term used loosely) Thibaut Lepouttre waxed lyrical about MTO's quarter and as the blurb that accompanied his write-up announced (as featured on Kitco last night):

"Looking at the balance sheet, we’re actually pretty happy with what we see"

One can only assume that M. Lepouttre is a very, but very easy man to please. Here's that balance sheet from the 3q14 filings:

One can also assume that M. Lepouttre writes his analyses for people that don't bother to read the regulatory filings before investing in tinycap gold mining stocks. The type of people who get a nasty case of Darwin, sooner or later.

It's an utter shock that an analysis company that's paid by the mining company to produce analysis on the mining company only ever says good things about the mining company, is it not?

Allied Nevada (ANV) ( (updated)

I cannot remember the number of times I've been told to steer well clear of this company (which was always easy, there's enough on my plate in South America without complicating things by adding in operators in the North) by a whole range of market pros I know and trust. So when you read ANV's NR this morning, remember the basic rule of news releases: Anytime a mining company feels obliged to tell you about something that isn't shiny and wonderful and great and wrapped up in wholly positive prose and wording, things must be very bad indeed.

UPDATE: Just out of interest, on November 3rd ANV released on its 3q14 numbers, updated on operations and gave guidance of 220k-230k oz gold. Today they tell us that the acid leach material issues were known to them in late October and those guidance numbers have been pulled down by 10k. Nothing was mentioned about the problem in the November 3rd update, or its outlook section.

Late October...November 3rd...hmmm...

Any lawyers reading IKN today?

BLS Jerbs Repert (updated)

WSJ does a good liveblog, find it here. The Jerbs nermber comes out in six minutes' time.

UPDATE: Headline 5.8%, NFP +321,000, now to find out which side uses the "oh it's really noisy as usual" excuse. The rest you'll hear about in a million places including analysis on the wages number that's suddenly become fashionable, inflation tell that it's supposed to be. Or two or three million places if you start looking. Enjoy Friday.

PS: As usual, read Bill McBride at Calculated Risk for the best Jerbs analysis. Start here.

Ten years of copper and gold production in Peru

Sometimes the bird's eye view gives better insight to the future.

The two major products of Peru, which together comprise around 40% of everything the country exports in any normal month, are copper and gold. Here are the monthly production numbers for the last ten years for the metals in question:

The inference couldn't be clearer: Peru is moving away from gold, moving towards copper. With Toromocho speeding up production next year, Constancia about to produce its first tonne of copper this month, then Las Bambas coming online in 2016, the $4Bn Cerro Verde expansion kicking in at the same time and others too, Peru won't even need the ill-fated Tia Maria, the hated Conga, the never-gonna-happen Majaz or Cañariaco projects for copper to become even more in its exports mix in the next five years. And behind those there are more projects in early stage (Haquira to name just one). Peru's reputation as first and foremost a gold mining country isn't going to last much longer. 

Chart of the day is...

...copper since November 25th, when the futs contract lost its 3-handle:

It's fighting back pretty well, all told. Bull case intact.


Rio Alto Mining ( (RIOM) produces 18,793 ounces of gold in October 2014

According to the Peru mining ministry (MEM) figures released today. Here's the chart:

That little lot adds up to 181,581 oz gold for the first ten months of the year. Another solid month's worth of production, right on track for its recently upgraded 2014 guidance. This mine runs on rails, it seems. 

In other news, Toromocho is still lagging, though slightly better at 9,191 tonnes copper in October. That's 53k tonnes for the year, a mile off its original guidance. There are other interesting numbers from other companies too (oh you gotta see the trevali numbers, guys) but you can find them all by yourself Ovais, you sneaky git.

"Long Nikkei/Short Gold: Profitable, dangerous and missed by everybody?"

I was sent this link by reader PB today and instead of sighing and ignoring it for the gold conspiracy type headline, I read it. That's because I've learned that PB is a smart person and if he recos something, it's for a good reason. Having just finished reading the note dated December 4th and entitled "Long Nikkei/Short Gold: Profitable, dangerous and missed by everybody?" I'm posting this because anyone who's interested in the gold market should do the same. Even if you don't agree with the thesis, there's an awful lot of interesting brainfood here. 

No excerpt here, you need to read the whole thing. But do yourself a favour, don't get put off by the double Y-axis charts at the top and read through the executive summary before making a personal call on the contents. That'll take you less than two minutes and once you've done so, I bet dollars the donuts you'll want to know more. Today's metals must-read by a long distance, right here.

Thank you PB

Gary Biiwii: Correct on gold (and Mr. Gold) again

The other day this humble corner of cyberspace ran a parsing of the ridiculous Olivier Garret of Casey Research and Gary Tanashian over at his place was kind enough to link to it, thus bringing extra eyeballs this way. It's time to return the favour because today Gary eviscerates a dumbass with a chip on his shoulder about goldbugs. 

You really need to see this Biiwii post because for every idiot goldbug there's an idiot anti-goldbug (law of physics?), a group to which the ironically named Howard Gold, cap mkts word-spewer at MarketWatch, most definitely belongs. An excerpt:
Howard Gold: The big improvement in the federal debt should be a boon to the U.S., which has been a magnet for global capital over the last couple of years.

Gary Tanashian: What big improvement?  Look, I know you sell newsletters with a premise of long America with a side of anti gold bug rants, but what big improvement, the one in your own mind?  Sorry, but we live in the real world, not in your mind.
Global capital is magnetized to the US because the reserve currency, the US dollar is the beneficiary of a cessation of QE as other nations are just ramping up similar operations.  It’s a cyclical thing Howard.  There is no big improvement in the Federal debt; you yourself just said so.  There is an improvement in the budget deficit, not the Federal debt.  WTF are you talking about?
Go see it all here. Because when push comes to shove IKN is not anti-goldbug at all. It's not anti-silverbug either (though appearances may sometimes deceive on that one). IKN is anti-dumbass-spouting, is anti being forced to listen to people who have not the first clue about gold, silver, metals, whatever. We round these parts are bored with liars, thieves and snake-oil salespeople and sadly, nature of the beast and that, gold and silver and suchlike tends to attract them like flies but scrape away the crud and there are smart, reasoned arguments to be found pro and contra gold etc. Gary is the goldbug that the real anti-gold brigade need to address, the smart and intelligent goldbug, but they don't because they prefer to pick their easy targets. My stars, there are enough of them around.

The Aurcana (AUN.v) 43-101 resource for La Negra: Caedite eos, novit enim Dominus qui sunt eius

The more you look at this NR out yesterday from Aurcana (AUN.v), the more you realize how worthless the whole 43-101 system truly is. Consider this chart that shows the 43-101 compliant report results for the company's La Negra mine in 2012 and then in 2014:

  • In 2012, Behre Dolbear told us there were over 115m ounces of silver in Measured and Indicated resources at La Negra, held in the tonnage of rock and the grade you see there in the table.
  • Yesterday, 2014, AMC told us there were 11.558m ounces (and no, I haven't put the decimal in the wrong place there) of silver in Measured and Indicated resources at La Negra, again held in the tonnage and grade you see in the table.

Just let those two statements sink in a little. And before you ask, in the period between those reports less than 3m ounces of silver was mined from the resource in question. And once it's sunk in you're left with the question of whose ass to sue:

Do you sue Aurcana's ass? 
Do you sue Baltazar Solano-Rico and Betty Gibbs, the people who compiled the Behre Dolbear 43-101?
Do you sue Behre Dolbear? 
And while you're at it maybe you sue AMC for underestimation, just in case
Or perhaps we should cut out all the middlemen and sue CIMM for trying to make believe its 43-101 system is something we can rely upon.

I say kill 'em all Amalric. Kill 'em all.

People who still fap over silver conveniently forget...

...when it suits them that the metal was the vehicle for a pump and dump scheme just a couple of years ago.

Gold has held onto much (by no means all, but much) of the price gains of pre/post crisis, silver is back to where it was. Gold has instrinsic value, y'see, silver's just a way of playing numbers games.

It explains why silver has performed so badly, even when you forget the whupping it's taken from gold recently (check that gold/silver ratio for more) and compare it to the best of the industrials, copper (here the HGH5 rolling futures contract, a good proxy).

But as usual, those who champion its cause and blame their failings on The Illuminati World Owners or something prefer to ignore the inconvenient truths that stare us normal people in the face. Silverbugs are the single most stupid group of investors on the planet, they make goldbugs look sane and well-adjusted. 


Screwtape Files's GM Jenkins is also getting bullish on gold

Right here.

Along with Iwnattos featured earlier, that makes two people who are by no means members of the mouthbreather permabull gold team now getting friendly towards the gold price. For me, interesting.

Midweek melody: Faith No More; Stripsearch

They tell me FNM is back in the studio. This is a good thing.

Argentina and junior miners: A reminder

It's not the first time this has been featured on the pages of this humble corner of cyberspace but by the looks of the mailbox this morning it would seem that a little reminder is in order, at least for a few of you out there.

We at IKN hope you are enjoying a pleasant Wednesday.

Iwnattos calls buy on gold

Which means everybody can now relax because gold is going to go much higher because the next star of the newsletter universe cycle that is about to begin has called buy on gold. Here.

UPDATE to his update: Yes he did.

PS: Nice to see his blog change from that eye-wrenching white-on-black. Easier to read now.

I've re-joined Twitter, but...

On October 12th I decided to close down my Twitter account as an experiment. I could see it was taking up too much of my time, on the other hand I found it useful for certain things and I wanted to see what difference not having it around would make to my working life and life in general.

After nearly two months without it I can state for the record that the inconvenience of not being on Twitter is far outweighed by the time I now have to do more productive things. That's true for work (after all I'm no daytrader, never will be, and fundies analysis doesn't need to be on the absolute second-by-second pulse) and it's true for my private life. For just one example I've got through several books that I'd been planning to read for a while but never got round to because "I don't have enough time"; right now I'm ploughing through War and Peace (yes the Tolstoy novel and seriously, I'm not being ironic) for the first time in over twenty years. And thoroughly enjoying it too, thanks very much. 

After due consideration, the only thing I truly missed about Twitter was talking about football matches in Spanish with a group of friends that had sprung up over the years. And that's why I opened a new Twitter account earlier this week. It's not going to be displayed here on the blog, it's not going to carry links to IKN posts (Twitter-Things about which I don't give a rat's ass include "more blog hits", "brand promotion", "becoming influential", "voice creation") and it's not even going to be in English. I've gone back to Twitter so that I can chat with my pals in Spanish about River Plate matches, Argentina matches, South American football matters when the games are on. And that's all.

The main thing I've learned these last eight weeks is that I was becoming unconscious over at Twitter. I'd wrapped myself into a stream of inane blather that is extremely habit forming but ultimately becomes rote, superficial and turns you into a mental mirror, rather than a sentient being. There is no Buddha in Twitter.

Chart of the day is...

...the gold/silver ratio, three years:

What if I told you that silver's still overvalued?
What if I told you that it's a by-product metal, not something that's has its own supply and demand at the centre of economic decisions to mine it?
What if I told you that Eric Sprott was wrong?
What if I told you that every single dedicated silver miner stock is still overvalued?
What if I told you to fuck silver?

Bart Simpson explains Nevada Copper ( to Scotiabank's sales desk

Nobody cares about land transfer bills. The reason it has not sold to a major in the last five years, is not attractive to a major and will not get bought out at any time in the foreseeable future cannot be found in the halls of the Senate or the House of Representatives. Look in the 43-101s.

Crap rocks with a permit are still crap rocks. Any further questions?


Three mining companies charged with environmental misbehaviour in LatAm.

Chile's Environment Superintendency today filed charges against Lachlan Star's ( ( wholly owned subsidiary, Minera Dayton, for "diverse infractions" in the 2013 and 2014 period. Meanwhile Gold Resource Corp (GORO) was sanctioned by the Mexico enviro people for cutting corners at its Oaxaca operations. Ditto Fortuna Silver (FSM) ( as Mexico's Profepa must have been working the South of the country last week

So now you know.

The drop in mining exploration in Peru

And while rootling around at the Peru MEM website today, this caught my eye. So it's worth sharing:

The 2014 projection (U$629.6m total) is taken from the official figure for the nine months to September 2014 and then directly extrapolated, so it could turn out higher or lower but it gives a decent enough idea. 

Copper's U$2.80/lb level looks like an important one

Edit: I got my $2.80 and $2.90 numbers mixed up (in my own head, mainly) earlier on. The floor level seems to be $2.80, but two of my neurons weren't conversing well and I wrote about $2.90, which wasn't the idea, honest. I've now changed the script numbers, but to bear witness to the brainfart I'm leaving the chart note unchanged.

Here's the chart:

I personally have been riffing on the $3/lb level for weeks and months without paying a great deal of attention to the charts. Copper's weakness in the last 24 hours got me looking more closely, because I'm a long-term bull on the price and wanted to know if I'm in the process of making a big mistake by holding onto a bullish attitude here (oil price and all that jazz). 

I was surprised to see the $2.80/lb level, one that's just about holding today, as important as it seems to be in longer-term price support terms. Therefore I don't think my bull case for copper is dead yet, though it's going to be the metal to watch in the days ahead. Gold and silver can do what they want, copper is the key.

2014 shows a big drop in the number of deaths in the Peru mining sector

I'm not fully sure what to make of this. Is it because some of the more dangerous mines are now closed or under new (better) management? Is it a pure stats anomaly? Has the MEM counting method changed? Are the tougher H&S rules in Peru finally paying off? A combo of factors (my best guess)? But what we do have is an interesting development so perhaps the best thing to do is take the figures at face value and be done. Here we go:

According to Peru Ministry of Energy and Mines (MEM) data, updated to December 1st 2014 (i.e. includes all of November), in the first 11 months of 2014 there were 24 mortal accidents (i.e. deaths) reported in the Peruvian mining sector. Even without knowing December's total yet, this is a big drop in the number of deaths in Peru's mines. Here's the chart:

And if we focus in on the last few years and check out the monthly totals, we see there were zero deaths registered in October and November this year. 

That's the first time there has been a zero death month in Peru's mines since September 2000 (yup, 14 years). And we haven't just had one, but two on the trot.

This is a good thing. Let it continue.

Insider trade of the day is...

...this one:

Beaty buys 14,571,100m shares of his karma-leveller. Link here.

And to be honest, when the 3q14 numbers came out a couple of weeks ago I thought AXY had finally turned a corner, too. Darned nearly said something in the Weekly, but kept it focused on miners. The difference now? The subsidiaries are performing and adding cash to the structure, rather than fracturing it. And there's that recent geothermal deal signed between the countries of Iceland and Nicaragua, that one fits both ends. I don't think AXY will ever be a massive multi-bagger winner, but it now has the makings of a long-term cash cow...this thing could spit out small divis for the next 45 years.


Frank Rich in conversation with Chris Rock

I was sent this link this morning and instructed to read it because "It's amazing stuff". I did so and agreed. I've just read it again and if anything it got even better, so it's heartily recommended to all visitors of IKN. 

Chris Rock and Frank Rich talk about the world, click here and enjoy.

The funny thing about this First Majestic (AG) ( news today... how it's suddenly pretty important to the company. Here's the NR and I've stuck the whole thing at the end of this post for reference purposes, but the matter to consider is this:

When the judgement originally came down, favouring First Majestic ( (AG) and going against Hector Davila, the market gave a small shrug and just carried on without giving much credit. That's because on April 24th 2013 was a CAD$12.37 stock, the market cap was CAD$1.445Bn (with a B) and the CAD$96.3m awarded represented just 6.7% of the market cap, as well as probably realizing that there would be a whole long appeals process to go through as well.

But now, even with CAD$14.9m of the judgement banked, the CAD$81m that's left to be collected by is important cash for the company because is now a mere CAD$4.90 share price and the award, if collected tomorrow (and that appeal has just been thrown out by the Supreme Court so where is Davila going next, The Hague?), would represent 14.1% of its current CAD$575.91m market cap. Or if you like, it's 69c/share on a sub-$5 share price. It also compares to the U$37.23m it has in cash treasury as at its last quarterly filing....or if you prefer, FR collects and triples its treasury overnight.

Finally, note that has not accrued any of the outstanding CAD$81m to its financials yet (see note 25 of the 3q14 financials, if you care enough) so the day that cash arrives it'll be a plop! oh look! big money from nowhere! moment. Anyway, here's the NR. Beats me why this didn't move the stock more significantly than the silver producer average today, seems to have been totally overlooked.


VANCOUVERDec. 1, 2014 /CNW/ - FIRST MAJESTIC SILVER CORP. (AG: NYSE; FR: TSX) (the "Company" or "First Majestic") is pleased to announce that the Supreme Court of Canada has dismissed the leave to appeal application by Hector Davila Santos ("Davila Santos") and Minerales y Minas Mexicanas, S.A. de C.V. ("MMM") against the Company.
As previously announced, on April 24, 2013 the Supreme Court of British Columbia awarded judgment of CDN$96.3 million (USD $85.0 million) in favour of First Majestic in the litigation against Davila Santos and MMM. The subsequent appeal of this judgment by Davila Santos and MMM was dismissed on June 5, 2014 by the British Columbia Court of Appeal for failure by Davila Santos and MMM to comply with a court order.
On June 27, 2014Davila Santos and MMM filed an application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada. On November 27, 2014, the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed their application. 
Other than the funds of CDN$14.9 million previously obtained by the Company, the Company has not received any payment of the trial judgment, leaving the amount of approximately CDN$81.0 million (USD$71.5 million) unpaid. The Company cautions that it may have to take additional legal actions to try to recover this amount. The outcome of any such proceedings is not presently determinable.
Dollar amounts referred to in judgments are stated in Canadian dollars and the U.S. dollar equivalents are based on the current exchange rate and subject to change due to currency exchange rate fluctuations, including changes to U.S. dollar equivalents previously reported.
First Majestic is a mining company focused on silver production in México and is aggressively pursuing the development of its existing mineral property assets and the pursuit through acquisition of additional mineral assets which contribute to the Company achieving its corporate growth objectives.

Why 'The End' by Mark Strand

This was put on the blog earlier because Mark Strand, erstwhile poet laureate of The USA, died at the weekend. Also because if I could one day write something that's 10% as good as that piece I'd be a very happy person indeed.

So now you know.

What exposure to Colombia can do for your junior mining company, explained in three easy steps

1) Cordoba Minerals (CDB.v) announces a drill cut of 123m of 0.74% Cu and 0.6 g/t gold.

2) The stock moves up half a cent on 200 shares traded.

3) The end

(and no, i don't own any)

UPDATE: After this was published, CDB.v managed to put on an extra penny. Volume was still weak at 43.5k traded, though.

Santacruz Silver (SCZ.v): While on the subject of silver mining companies blowing smoke up the market's ass... I the only one who's noticed this? Seems from the way the stock is rallying this morning that there are still people who trust the bullshitter Prestamo leading up SCZ. Mad fools.

Exhibit One: When SCZ arranged its original $28.4m pre-paid silver deal it said the cash was to build its San Felipe mine. Here's the October 2nd NR that announced the deal's closure:
VANCOUVER, Oct. 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ - Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. ("Santacruz" or the "Company") (SCZ.V) is pleased to announce that it has finalized and closed the US$28.4 million Pre-paid Silver Purchase Agreement with JMET, LLC  ("the Agreement") previously announced on September 18, 2014. The funds will be used to advance the development of the Company's second project, San Felipe, in Sonora State, Mexico.

Exhibit Two: This morning SCZ said it's not going ahead with San Felipe's only borrowing $12.4m. Here's the excerpt:
Pursuant to the original agreement the Company received an upfront payment of US$28.4 million . With the quantity of silver ounces to be delivered reduced to 2,600,000 ounces, the upfront payment has been commensurately reduced to US$12.4 million .

Therefore the obvious question: If you're not building the mine any more, why are you going $12.4m into hock, Arturo? The obvious answer: SCZ is bullshitting, it's got no cash, its mine isn't FCF+, it needs to go into debt to keep operating.

But don't expect an honest answer from a liar running a silver miner. So don't even bother asking.

Tahoe Resources (TAHO) ( can seriously go fuck itself

So here's the situation in relation to the budget deal that has TAHO up in arms. The current agreement with the government is a voluntarily agreed 5% royalty (THO and GG made a big fuss about signing this deal) which would not be added to the new proposal, but replace it (something a LOT of Canadian anal ysts have got wrong this morning...checking the fine print is your job, dumbasses). It's one of the most profitable silver mines in the world on a pure costs basis, salaries are rock bottom compared to just about anywhere outside of deep Africa, the tax regime is benign, it gets corp tax breaks that are currently slipping its mind and what's more, THO wants to stop paying for its community program and get the government to pay from the extra 5% it wants to charge. Because that's all we're talking about here, an extra 5% royalty.

There's also plenty of doubt that these changes go through, as the 11th hour budget deal that includes these new mining royalty laws has come in for a lot of criticism inside Guatemala for both its substance and the nefarious style in which it was suddenly sprung upon parliament and quickly passed. President Otto Pérez Molina has a veto and if he sticks up for his mining pals the way he's done before, he'll use it.

So, bottom line: THO is moaning because even if the law passes, it will have to start giving a reasonable percentage of its profits to its host country instead of the very cheap bonanza deal it's been enjoying up to now. And it can go fuck itself.

PS: And yes, to answer the mails, that above does mean that I think the selling in TAHO today is overcooked and that it'll bounce back very quickly. Didn't they teach you freakin' reading comprehension at your school, dumbass?

The End, by Mark Strand

Not every man knows what he shall sing at the end,
Watching the pier as the ship sails away, or what it will seem like
When he's held by the sea's roar, motionless, there at the end,
Or what he shall hope for once it is clear that he'll never go back.

When the time has passed to prune the rose or caress the cat,
When the sunset torching the lawn and the full moon icing it down
No longer appear, not every man knows what he'll discover instead.
When the weight of the past leans against nothing, and the sky

Is no more than remembered light, and the stories of cirrus
And cumulus come to a close, and all the birds are suspended in flight,
Not every man knows what is waiting for him, or what he shall sing
When the ship he is on slips into darkness, there at the end.

Coeur in talks to buy Paramount

Makes sense: Coeur is famous for overpaying on crappy properties. Ask them about Orko.


Silver Asia open


The IKN Weekly, out now

IKN290 has just been sent to subscribers. And Fernando Cavenaghi is back

A still from that Pripyat Chernobyl video....

...posted yesterday, here. It comes at minute 2:37 and I ended up dreaming about it last night.

To quote Yeats out of context, a terrible beauty is born.

UPDATE: Reader PR mails in with a better photo of same and informs your author that it's part of a mural found in what's left of the Pripyat post office. Thank you PR.

Tabaré Vázquez versus Luis Lacalle Pou

Today sees the second round run-off to decide on Uruguay's next President and it's between centre-left Tabaré Vázquez, the ex-Prez and from current Prez Mujica's party, or right wing Luis Lacalle Pou.

And Tabaré Vázquez will win.

UPDATE Sunday evening: Exit polls have Tabaré Vázquez at 53%, Luis Lacalle Pou has conceded. Fat lady sings. End.

That Switzerland gold thing

I've kept quiet in public about the referendum vote in Switzerland about gold and the central bank because getting hatemail from rabid goldbugs becomes rather boring after the first dozen or so, but now we have projections for exit polls that indicate 78% of Swiss have voted against the initiative I'd just like to make clear my views. This is done by sharing here a mail I sent to a friend on November 19th by way of reply, when he noted the issue and asked me for thoughts.

I was asked about the Swissie gold referendum thing weeks ago (literally) by a subber. My answer was that I didn't care because there's no way in the world that the Swiss will vote to change their banking system in any way shape or form. Arguably the world richest nation, arguably the most educated nation about financial matters, all based on a banking system that has served them better than (again arguably) any other nation on earth...and they want to change it? It's asinine (this time word used no holds barred). Just another goldbug wet dream, waiting for the result to shoot it down in flames, which will then give them another excuse to shake their collective fists at the world and mutter about The Powers That Be and our illuminati Bilderberg extraterrestrial lizard people rulers.We good now? Thanks.

I think  that just about covers things. Enjoy your Sunday.