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G20 Ends Abruptly as Obama Calls Putin a Jackass

Posted by Andy Borowitz

ST. PETERSBURG (The Borowitz Report)—Hopes for a positive G20 summit crumbled today as President Obama blurted to Russia’s Vladimir Putin at a joint press appearance, “Everyone here thinks you’re a jackass.”

The press corps appeared stunned by the uncharacteristic outburst from Mr. Obama, who then unleashed a ten-minute tirade at the stone-faced Russian President.

“Look, I’m not just talking about Snowden and Syria,” Mr. Obama said. “What about Pussy Riot? What about your anti-gay laws? Total jackass moves, my friend.”

As Mr. Putin narrowed his eyes in frosty silence, Mr. Obama seemed to warm to his topic.

“If you think I’m the only one who feels this way, you’re kidding yourself,” Mr. Obama said, jabbing his finger in the direction of the Russian President’s face. “Ask Angela Merkel. Ask David Cameron. Ask the Turkish guy. Every last one of them thinks you’re a dick.”

Shortly after Mr. Obama’s volcanic performance, Mr. Putin released a terse official statement, reading, “I should be afraid of this skinny man? I wrestle bears.”

After one day of meetings, the G20 nations voted unanimously on a resolution that said maybe everyone should just go home.

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EL-ERIAN: Europe Threatens To Cripple The IMF

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G20 finance ministers need to stand in the way of European manipulation of the International Monetary Fund when they meet in Mexico City this weekend, PIMCO chief executive Mohamed El-Erian writes in a column published today in the Financial Times.

A staunch critic of Europe‘s attempts to get around its internal problems by relying on IMF funding, he argues that non-European economies need to stand up for the IMF’s professed “uniformity of treatment,” particularly given the harsh rules the organizations have imposed on emerging market countries in Asia and Latin America in the past.

A few choice snippets:

It should come as no surprise that over the last couple of years Europe has pressed the IMF very hard to make exception after exception – and it has succeeded. This has resulted in a number of firsts by an organisation that prided itself on the “uniformity of treatment” for member countries.

And later…

This is an internal issue that the IMF cannot, and should not be expected to, solve. It is up to the eurozone to decide whether to go forward in its current configuration towards a fiscal union or whether to first slim down to a more coherent and stable configuration. This would provide a better basis for a larger European-financed firewall.

As tempting as it is, Europe should not seek to obfuscate this critical decision by using IMF financing to give the appearance of sustaining the unsustainable. It must start making the necessary, albeit very difficult, decisions. Until this happens, the G20 has a global responsibility to protect the IMF from further damage to its credibility and legitimacy.

Read El-Erian’s full editorial in the Financial Times >

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REVEALED: The 29 Global Megabanks That Are Systemically Important And Too Big To Fail

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by Simone Foxman

The G20’s enforcement agency found that 29 banks globally are too big to fail.

It published a long-awaited list of “systemically important” banks Friday. Banks on the list will have to cooperate with regulations imposed by the agency as well as the Basel Committee of Banking Supervision.

Here are some of those new rules (via WSJ):

– By the end of 2012, all banks will have to map out a plan to unwind their businesses in the case of a collapse.

– By 2016 they have to hold more capital than other banks. They’ll be sorted into five different “buckets,” based on which they’ll be required to maintain 1%-3.5% more capital than less significant banks.

– By 2019, that capital requirement will be an added 3.5% on top of other regulations.

The list will be updated every November and the methodology to choose the banks will be reviewed every three years.

Click here to see which banks are too big to fail >

Occupiers Have A Mascot, Robin Hood. Too Bad He Is Opposed To Their Rhetoric.

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by Casey Hendrickson

I suppose it was inevitable. Eventually, people ignorant to the circumstances they are protesting were bound to extend their ignorance to a new mascot.  I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’d expected them to take up the Robin Hood fallacy.

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On October 29, on the eve of the G20 Leaders Summit in France, let’s the people of the world rise up and demand that our G20 leaders immediately impose a 1% #ROBINHOOD tax on all financial transactions and currency trades. Let’s send them a clear message: We want you to slow down some of that $1.3-trillion easy money that’s sloshing around the global casino each day – enough cash to fund every social program and environmental initiative in the world.

‘Take from the rich, give to the poor,’ is the often misused mantra of Robin Hood.  However, Robin Hood was not about wealth redistribution at all.  This proposal to demand a tax in Robin Hood’s name is the very definition of irony.  Robin Hood wasn’t an occupier, he was a tea partier.

Robin Hood’s beef wasn’t with the wealthy.  It was with the abusive government over-taxation policy.  It was the Sheriff’s unfair taxation to fund government programs he opposed.  Robin Hood has often been depicted as an aristocrat who had his wealth wrongly stripped from him.  He would oppose the occupiers at every turn.

Demanding a tax in his name is the exact opposite of what he stood for.  Robin Hood would have thrown tea into the harbor. Robin Hood would have been there at the beginning of the tea party movement.  Echoing what our founders and the tea partiers after them stood for … less taxation and getting the government out of our lives. Not the pillaging of the fruits of one’s labor.

Robin Hood is not one of the fictional 99% … Robin Hood is one of the 53%.

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