Categories » ‘CURRENCY COLLASPE’
July 18th, 2015 by olddog
By Eric Zuesse
http://www.esm.europa.eu/pdf/ESM Treaty consolidated 13-03-2014.pdf
That’s the treaty establishing (which was originally done in 2012) the ultimate lending-fund for what the EU now officially considers to be a permanent economic crisis in Europe, of member-nations that are experiencing “severe financing problems,” and that are therefore continually ripe for asset-stripping by aristocrats.
It’s called the European Stability Mechanism.
It’s anything but that. Here is what it actually does:
In other words: it establishes the European bureaucracy to serve global aristocrats, so as to help them asset-strip the European populations of corrupt member-nations. These bureaucrats get transferred back-and-forth between this bureaucracy and the big financial institutions (which also are dependent upon the same billionaires), so that these bureaucratic servants of the aristocracy can themselves gradually emerge as aristocrats, basically joining (now becoming principals, no longer merely agents of) the aristocratic financial war stripping the public.
Here are some key provisions of this “Treaty,” or Europe’s (or the EU’s) new constitution:
Article 34. Professional secrecy. The Members or former Members of the Board of Governors and of the Board of Directors and any other persons who work or have worked for or in connection with the ESM shall not disclose information that is subject to professional secrecy. They shall be required, even after their duties have ceased, not to disclose information of the kind covered by the obligation of professional secrecy.
Article 35. Immunities of persons. 1. In the interest of the ESM, the Chairperson of the Board of Governors, Governors, alternate Governors, Directors, alternate Directors, as well as the Managing Director and other staff members shall be immune from legal proceedings with respect to acts performed by them in their official capacity and shall enjoy inviolability in respect of their official papers and documents. …
Article 36. Exemption from taxation. 1. Within the scope of its official activities, the ESM, its assets, income, property and its operations and transactions authorised by this Treaty shall be exempt from all direct taxes. …
It’s a “Mechanism” (basically, a government) to transfer to the aristocracy the public’s assets, which are the lands and pensions and healthcare and educational systems, which, in a democracy, are supposed to serve the public, but which, in an aristocracy, serve instead the billionaires. In Europe, aristocrats are still in charge.
For example, one confidential document, dated 11 June 2013, “Real Estate Based Asset Financing for the Hellenic Republic,” has this:
“The Hellenic Republic [Greece] holds a diverse collection of assets, many of which have been scheduled for sale as part of its commitments under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the European Commission, the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank [the three members of ’The Troika’], and the Hellenic Republic. The sale of state-owned assets is a one-off opportunity to raise capital for the Hellenic Republic [to be able to repay banks, which had lent to Greece at an 18% interest rate — and thereby already enriched aristocrats heavily at the public’s expense — and now retrospectively taxpayer-guaranteeing those junk bonds, which global aristocrats had bought through those banks, granting these 18%-interest-rate junk bonds a retrospective AAA+ equivalent taxpayer-guaranteed status, courtesy of the politicians who were supposed to have represented the public].”
Furthermore: “This would help increase the privatisation proceeds beyond the amount currently forseen in the MoU. The majority of the real estate is undeveloped land, with substantial potential,” which “potential” won’t be enjoyed by the Greek public via a future improved Greek national economy and increased tax-income into the Greek Government, but instead enjoyed by global aristocrats, who will be buying that “undeveloped land” now, before its value soars — so that aristocrats will be in on the rip-offs of the Greek public, both coming, and, now, going.
The document specifies that, “A large part of the Greek real estate portfolio is suitable for tourist development, and given Greece’s climate and leisure and holiday potential this is the key source of potential value for investors.” In other words: whatever desperate Greeks will still remain in Greece after all of the stripping of the assets of the state, will now become available, at rock-bottom subsistence wages, to serve tourists, while the billionaire owners, throughout the world, will be reaping the profits, from that land (including the beaches and new hotels), and from their slaves there (serving those tourists). This is commonly called “the free market”: the more desperate and poor the public (the Greeks serving those tourists) are, the more profit the aristocracy (the owners of those resorts) will receive. After Barack Obama’s coup overthrew Ukraine’s democratically elected President in February 2014, Ukraine’s soaring debt is already being treated this way (being set up for privatization), even before Ukraine joins the EU (if it ever will). Similarly, privatization followed the junta that Obama protected (if he didn’t even place them into power) in Honduras in 2009.
There is nothing basically new about this. Benito Mussolini introduced privatization in Italy during the 1920s. Admiring his success with that wealth-transfer to aristocrats, Adolf Hitler then took it up in Germany during the 1930s.
Nowadays, this is called “libertarianism” in the United States, and “neoliberalism” in Europe. It’s just standard economic theory, being put into political practice. Another term for it is “austerity” (as the public calls it), or (to employ the economist’s euphemistic phrase for it) “fiscal consolidation.”
What Mussolini and Hitler started, is now being put into practice increasingly around the world, but it is no longer overtly called “fascism.” Mussolini and Hitler were defeated in WW II, and so the label “fascist” needed to be changed, but the aristocracy, which financed fascists’ rises, has by now emerged victorious (in the U.S. and not only in Europe), using deceit (including these new labels), instead of relying upon mere bombs and guns. There are enough fools (‘libertarians,’ or believers in ‘the free market,’ etc.), so that victory comes far cheaper via such deceits (mental coercion) than via violence (physical coercion — coercion against the body). (But, of course, war, too, can be profitable.)
The entirety of the ‘Greek bailouts’ is bailouts of the aristocracy, not of the public; it’s just like America’s ‘Wall Street bailouts,’ which bailed out the banksters instead of the cheated MBS investors and homeowners. The ‘Greek bailouts’ were actually loans, not ‘bailouts’ at all; and after the loans turned sour, taxpayers were forced to buy them from the aristocrats, who were the ultimate recipients of the actual bailouts. The lenders never bailed anybody out, but instead were bailed out by the public. However, in the Greek case, the people who are blamed are the Greek public, who are being stripped. After all, such blame-the-victim is the natural response, for believers in ‘the free market.’ But it would be like blaming the stripped pension funds, and the underwater homeowners, for having caused the bailouts of Wall Street. Calling them ‘bailouts of Greece’ is the reverse of what they actually are, which is an ongoing stripping of the Greek public. (Other European publics should be angry against the aristocrats they’re bailing out, not against the Greek public, who never benefited from those loans, and who aren’t the people that socked away some or all of those borrewed funds into Swiss or other accounts abroad.) It’s like blaming a raped woman for having been raped. That’s conservative, in the extreme. It’s fascist.
The EU’s dictatorship is by the aristocracy, against the public. It’s just like the U.S. dictatorship — competing parties, both or all of which represent the aristocracy, against the public; none representing the public, against the aristocracy. Conservatives support it, because they support the aristocracy. (A reader replied to this, “it isn’t just the doctrinaire conservatives that support the new aristocracy it is the majority of the public”; but the majority of the public is conservative, they’re devoted to myths; so, that’s not contradicting my assertion, it’s just restating the tragedy.)
This is why inequality is high, and soaring. Democracy is disappearing.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.
July 15th, 2015 by olddog
By Michael Rivero
In the good old days, after George Washington and the boys won the war to free us from the bank of England’s predatory and impoverishing practices, they set up a “revolutionary” economic system. The government created and issued all the public currency, spending it into circulation to purchase what the government needed, then after the currency circulated through society to fuel commerce, was taxed back to the government to balance the books.
Banks existed, of course. But they were kept off to one side, and use of the banks was optional for the people of the United States. It was possible to go through one’s entire life without dealing with a bank if one chose to do so.
This system not only reserved the choice whether to use the bank to the people, but it was a stable system, because as debt increased, the people could voluntarily choose to stop borrowing from the bank! That was one of the most important freedoms won during the revolution; the freedom to say “no” to the banks!
Then, in 1913, a corrupt Congress and a corrupt President changed the structure of the nation’s economy and stole your freedom to say “no”! The economic system was reverted to a mirror of that same system the nation fought a revolution to be free of. The power to issue money was taken away from the government and given to the bankers and from that day onward, ALL money in circulation was created as the result of a loan at interest from the bankers to the government, to business, and to the people. There is no exception. Every dollar paid in salary, spent to purchase food or gas, or paid in taxes, began as an interest bearing loan. There is no money in circulation in the United States that did not start out as a loan at interest from the bankers at the privately-owned Federal Reserve system.
From that moment on, the freedom of the people to refuse to borrow from the banks and to refuse to pay interest was stripped away. To participate in the commerce of the United States at all means being forced to use money loaned at interest, to the profit of the bankers and the impoverishment of the public. Your freedom to say “no” was stolen by Congress in 1913, without your permission and before you were born.
When you have lost the freedom to say “no”, when you have no choice but to pay a percentage of your earnings as interest to the bankers whether in private debt or taxes to cover the gargantuan debts by the US Government itself, you are a slave to the bankers. And because more money is owed to the bankers than actually exists, because of the interest charged on the loan that created the money, the debt-slavery is permanent! No matter how hard you work, no matter how much you sacrifice, the debt can never be paid off. The system is intentionally designed to trap the nation’s population permantly in unpayable debt, to make them slaves to that debt and to the bankers. This is the purpose behind the design of the Federal Reserve, the International Monitary Fund, the European Central Bank, and indeed every private central bank issuing the public currency as a loan at interest. This is why today every nation is drowning in created debt, and slaved to the private bankers. That is the reason for ever increasing taxes and decreasing benefits; to pay the bankers their unpayable interest on the public currency.
For that enslavement to succeed, your right and freedom to refuse that bank’s interest-bearing money must be stripped away. The government must force you to use that private central bank’s currency, loaned to you at interest, via the Legal Tender Laws. Therein lies your slave chains. You are ordered by the government, on pain of prison, to use the banker’s money, and to pay the interest charged by the bankers through your taxes.
Free people have the right to say “no.” Free people have a right to decide for themselves what medium of exchange they will use and to choose not to involve the bankers!
There is no freedom without the freedom to say “no.” Slaves cannot say “no” when ordered to surrender the products of their labor to their masters.
You are a slave.
“I am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country. A great industrial nation is now controlled by its system of credit.We are no longer a government by free opinion, no longer a government by conviction and the vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and duress of a small group of dominant men.” — Woodrow Wilson 1919
Slavery exists only because the slaves have been taught to believe that slavery is the way the world is supposed to be. Beliefs are chains used to enslave free people. No chains of steel ever bound a human tighter than the chains made of the beliefs with which we are indoctrinated while young in the state schools and the churches.
Slaves used to be held prisoner by their belief in rule by divine right. Then the slaves regained their freedom when they realized that divine right is only an illusion created by the enslavers to trick the people into obedient servitude.
Then slaves were held prisoner by their belief in rule by chattel ownership of one’s body. Then the slaves regained their freedom when they realized that one person owning another is an illusion created by the enslavers to trick the people into obedient servitude.
Today the modern slaves (that is YOU) are held prisoner by their belief in compound interest; that they owe money that never existed to repay money created out of thin air. And you modern slaves will regain your freedoms when you realize that private central banking is just another illusion created by the enslavers to trick you into obedient servitude.
July 14th, 2015 by olddog
By LAWRENCE SELLIN, PHD
The United States is not a constitutional republic. It is an oligarchy controlled by wealthy financiers who hire politicians to pass legislation beneficial to them and employ journalists to keep the citizens ignorant and compliant.
Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans believe in democracy. It is simply an ideological contest between two different forms of totalitarianism based on big government, where they represent only themselves in their pursuit of personal power and profit.
Over the last hundred years, the Democrat Party has moved farther and farther to the left, evolving from populism to Marxism and developing an operational model resembling that of the mafia. Its leaders are a gaggle of coffeehouse communists and unindicted felons, who seek the lifestyles of the rich and famous while practicing the politics of Joseph Stalin.
The Republicans are democratic only in the sense that they are willing to sell their votes to the highest bidder, where their political power and, ultimately, compensation from their rich donors increase proportionally with the expansion of government.
The federal government is now an industry competing with the private sector for revenues and resources, but, unlike the private sector, government is unconstrained by regulation and the rule of law.
The cost of public-sector pay and benefits, for example, which in many cases far exceed what comparable workers earn in the private sector, combined with hundreds of billions of dollars in unfunded pension liabilities for retired government workers, are weighing down the economy.
The fundamental problem is public-sector collective bargaining. It is appropriate in the private sector, where workers bargain with private, profit-making corporations and where market forces provide an independent check on both sides’ demands.
Yet there is an unholy alliance and a mutually beneficial relationship for money and votes between Democrats and public sector unions, which, in terms of government services, translate into higher costs, lower efficiency and, worst of all, less democracy.
Why are such illogical and dishonest policies allowed to continue? Because it is profitable.
To foster big government from which they personally benefit, the Democrats nurture a Marxist-type victim class, while the Republicans serve the affluent, both at the expense of the Middle Class, whose propensities toward liberty and accountability represent a threat to the hopelessly corrupt status quo that the two major parties and the media endeavor so vigorously to protect.
Ergo, the War on the Middle Class, now pursued by both Democrats and Republicans, albeit for different reasons.
As a consequence and, not surprisingly, today the main the activity of the federal government is lying. Barack Obama lied to get elected, lied to enact his policies and lied when those policies failed. In response, the Republicans added cowardice to their own set of lies.
As George Orwell noted: “In a time of universal deceit – telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
That is why the political establishment and the media find Donald Trump so frightening; the danger that the truth might be spoken.
There is, however, a greater peril – when blatant and outrageous lies are no longer sufficient to soothe the electorate into complacency, such a government must begin to curtail liberty and oppress the people in order to sustain itself, an approach with which both Democrats and Republicans find agreement.
The United States is on the cusp of a second civil war, one to determine who should control the federal government. It is not a contest between the Democrats and Republicans or liberals and conservatives, but a battle between the entrenched power and tyranny of the bipartisan political-media establishment versus the rights and liberties of the American people.
Only the truth will set us free.
Lawrence Sellin, Ph.D. is a retired colonel with 29 years of service in the US Army Reserve and a veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq. Colonel Sellin is the author of “Restoring the Republic: Arguments for a Second American Revolution “. He receives email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
THIS IS A NO BRAINER FOLKS
PICK UP THE PHONE AND DO YOUR DUTY
July 2nd, 2015 by olddog
By Michael Snyder
Keep an eye on the shadow banking system – it is about to be shaken to the core. According to the Financial Stability Board, the size of the global shadow banking system has reached an astounding 75 trillion dollars. It has approximately tripled in size since 2002. In the U.S. alone, the size of the shadow banking system is approximately 24 trillion dollars. At this point, shadow banking assets in the United States are even greater than those of conventional banks. These shadow banks are largely unregulated, but governments around the world have been extremely hesitant to crack down on them because these nonbank lenders have helped fuel economic growth. But in the end, we will all likely pay a very great price for allowing these exceedingly reckless financial institutions to run wild.
If you are not familiar with the “shadow banking system”, the following is a pretty good definition from investing answers.com…
The shadow banking system (or shadow financial system) is a network of financial institutions comprised of non-depository banks — e.g., investment banks, structured investment vehicles (SIVs), conduits, hedge funds, non-bank financial institutions and money market funds.
How it works/Example:
Shadow banking institutions generally serve as intermediaries between investors and borrowers, providing credit and capital for investors, institutional investors, and corporations, and profiting from fees and/or from the arbitrage in interest rates.
Because shadow banking institutions don’t receive traditional deposits like a depository bank, they have escaped most regulatory limits and laws imposed on the traditional banking system. Members are able to operate without being subject to regulatory oversight for unregulated activities. An example of an unregulated activity is a credit default swap (CDS).
These institutions are extremely dangerous because they are highly leveraged and they are behaving very recklessly. They played a major role during the financial crisis of 2008, and even the New York Fed admits that shadow banking has “increased the fragility of the entire financial system”…
The current financial crisis has highlighted the growing importance of the “shadow banking system,” which grew out of the securitization of assets and the integration of banking with capital market developments. This trend has been most pronounced in the United States, but it has had a profound influence on the global financial system. In a market-based financial system, banking and capital market developments are inseparable: Funding conditions are closely tied to fluctuations in the leverage of market-based financial intermediaries. Growth in the balance sheets of these intermediaries provides a sense of the availability of credit, while contractions of their balance sheets have tended to precede the onset of financial crises. Securitization was intended as a way to transfer credit risk to those better able to absorb losses, but instead it increased the fragility of the entire financial system by allowing banks and other intermediaries to “leverage up” by buying one another’s securities.
Over the past decade, shadow banking has become a truly worldwide phenomenon, and thus it is a major threat to the entire global financial system. In China, shadow banking has been growing by leaps and bounds, but this has the authorities deeply concerned. In fact, according to Bloomberg one top Chinese regulator has referred to shadow banking as a “Ponzi scheme”…
Their growth had caused the man who is now China’s top securities regulator to label the off-balance-sheet products a “Ponzi scheme,” because banks have to sell more each month to pay off those that are maturing.
And what happens to all Ponzi schemes eventually?
In the end, they always collapse.
And when this 75 trillion dollar Ponzi scheme collapses, the global devastation that it will cause will be absolutely unprecedented.
Bond expert Bill Gross, who is intimately familiar with the shadow banking system, has just come out with a major warning about the lack of liquidity in the shadow banking system…
Mutual funds, hedge funds, and ETFs, are part of the “shadow banking system” where these modern “banks” are not required to maintain reserves or even emergency levels of cash. Since they in effect now are the market, a rush for liquidity on the part of the investing public, whether they be individuals in 401Ks or institutional pension funds and insurance companies, would find the “market” selling to itself with the Federal Reserve severely limited in its ability to provide assistance.
As far as shadow banking is concerned, everything is just fine as long as markets just keep going up and up and up.
But once they start falling, the whole system can start falling apart very rapidly. Here is more from Bill Gross on what might cause a “run on the shadow banks” in the near future…
Long used to the inevitability of capital gains, investors and markets have not been tested during a stretch of time when prices go down and policymakers’ hands are tied to perform their historical function of buyer of last resort. It’s then that liquidity will be tested.
And what might precipitate such a “run on the shadow banks”?
1) A central bank mistake leading to lower bond prices and a stronger dollar.
2) Greece, and if so, the inevitable aftermath of default/restructuring leading to additional concerns for Eurozone peripherals.
3) China – “a riddle wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma”. It is the “mystery meat” of economic sandwiches – you never know what’s in there. Credit has expanded more rapidly in recent years than any major economy in history, a sure warning sign.
4) Emerging market crisis – dollar denominated debt/overinvestment/commodity orientation – take your pick of potential culprits.
5) Geopolitical risks – too numerous to mention and too sensitive to print.
6) A butterfly’s wing – chaos theory suggests that a small change in “non-linear systems” could result in large changes elsewhere. Call this kooky, but in a levered financial system, small changes can upset the status quo. Keep that butterfly net handy.
Should that moment occur, a cold rather than a hot shower may be an investor’s reward and the view will be something less than “gorgeous”. So what to do?Hold an appropriate amount of cash so that panic selling for you is off the table.
In order to avoid a shadow banking crisis, what we need is for global financial markets to stabilize and to resume their upward trends.
If stocks and bonds start crashing, which is precisely what I have projected will happen during the last half of 2015, the shadow banking system is going to come under an extreme amount of stress. If the coming global financial crisis is even half as bad as I believe it is going to be, there is no way that the shadow banking system is going to hold up.
So let’s hope that the financial devastation that we have seen so far this week is not a preview of things to come. The global financial system has been transformed into a delicately balanced pyramid of glass that is not designed to handle turbulent times. We should have never allowed the shadow banks to run wild like this, but we did, and now in just a short while we are going to get to witness a financial implosion unlike anything the world has ever seen before.
July 1st, 2015 by olddog
By Mac Slavo
According to the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the shadowy “central bank of central banks,” the world as it stands is incapable of combating another global financial crash – a crash that there is every reason to think is coming.
That’s because the economy remains in the hands of the Federal Reserve and other central banks.
The financial wizards in THIS VIDEO went so far to say that “we are all slaves to the central banks.” It wasn’t exactly hyperbole.
According to the BIS, central banks have already “used up their ammunition” by driving interests to below zero, freezing investment for the important stuff like production and infrastructure, and instead fueling huge bubbles for wonder kids on Wall Street to play in.
Now, everything is basically teetering on the edge until the music stops. According to the BIS, it will soon be time to pay the piper – as “persistent ultra-low rates” are poised to unleash destruction upon the economy like King Kong set loose on Manhattan:
The BIS report described the threat of a new bust in advanced economies as a “main risk”, with many reaching the top of the economic cycle.
The economies worst hit by the last crisis are now suffering the costs of persistent ultra-low rates, the organisation said, which could “inflict serious damage on the financial system”, sapping banks and weakening their balance sheets and their ability to lend.
And worse, the advanced countries will be unable to fight back against the serious consequences, according to their 2015 annual report:
In past years, the BIS has painted a clear picture of the bleak financial landscape brought on by central bank policy since the 2008 crisis.
It warned in 2013 that:
Fresh action from central banks to kick-start growth may do more harm than good, by distorting financial markets and jeopardising stability.
“Unfortunately, central banks cannot do more without compounding the risks they have already created.”(source)
In 2014, it found that central banks have failed to achieve a recovery, and are incapable of doing so:
Robust, self-sustaining growth still eludes the global economy… Central banks cannot solve the structural problems that are preventing a return to strong and sustainable growth.
“Most of all, central banks cannot enact the structural economic and financial reforms needed to return economies to the real growth paths authorities and their publics both want and expect.”
“What central bank accommodation has done during the recovery is to borrow time … But the time needs to be used wisely, as the balance between benefits and costs is deteriorating.” (source)
Given the unique insider position of the Bank for International Settlements in the global financial power structure, these are foreboding words to be met with mature concern. This is a tacit admission that the powers that be know the next big crisis is around the corner, and they are ready to watch us drown in it – this time, without reaching down to offer us up.
You can read more from Mac Slavo at his site SHTFplan.com, where this article first appeared.
This article may be re-posted in full with attribution.