Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Banksters, Enemies of Democracy, Friends of Fascism

from  http://robertlindsay.wordpress.com/


Banksters complain about excessive democracy in Europe.
Banksters complain about excessive democracy in Europe.
The rich and the corporations and especially the banksters have always hated democracy. Democracy of course mean popular rule or rule by the people. The banksters, the rich and the corporations believe that society should be ruled by an aristocracy. In fact, all conservatives believe in aristocratic rule and not democratic rule.
The banksters such as JP Morgan are the best friends of both political parties in the US. Both the Democrats and the Republicans are very much pro-bankster. Banksters provide much of the campaign funding for both parties for the preposterous money-based elections in our fake democracy. America is a fake democracy, not a real democracy, in part because its elections are money-based. Whoever has the most money wins the elections.
Politicians work only for those who give them lots of money and do nothing for those of us who do not give them any money. So politicians only serve the wealthy interests that fund their elections and they flip off everyone else. That’s not a democracy. Real democracy is never possible in the face of money-based elections.
Although both parties are deeply in bed with the banksters, the Republicans are worse. At least the Democrats tried to put Elizabeth Warren in as a watchdog for the banksters. She tried to push through many new rules that would have regulated the banksters and their asinine casinos in the sky that create nothing so that they don’t blow up the economy of the whole world like they did a few years ago.
The Republican Party has ferociously opposed any efforts to reasonably regulate the banksters to prevent horrific crashes like that of 2008. They do this because this is what the banksters want. The banksters want, nay demand, the right to blow up the economy of the whole damn world anytime they feel like it. And the Republican Party wants to give them that very God-given right to go ahead and do it all over again.
The takeaway point from the graphic though is, “Banksters hate democracy!”
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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Stalin, Hitler And The 5-Year Plans Of Banksters

from marketoraacle.co.uk  

Apr 27, 2014 - 10:50 PM GMT

By: Andrew_McKillop

The 2008-2013 Plan
Stalin's infamous five-year plans started with a “trial version” in late 1928. By “trial version” this meant his plans already included show trials of political enemies with frequent death sentences. Designed and executed for Hitler, the German banker Hjalmar Schacht's five-year plan of 1934-1938 directly applied Keynesian “remedies” for the economy and public finances. Schacht's plan was called a “groundbreaking fiscal stimulus program”, creating work by rebuilding the nation’s worn infrastructures, jettisoning the gold standard, imposing capital controls, and increasing State debt, after “diluting” the State's previous debt.

Keynes, whose 'General Theory' did not appear until 1936 was upstaged by both Stalin and Hitler. Keynes himself claimed to “detest Hitler as a person” but admired the Schacht plan.  In both cases, they applied mega-planning by a Leviathan State, exactly as Keynes said was necessary. Both were disasters - sooner or later – in the Stalin case from his initial “trial version”, which even surprised Stalin by the orgy of violence it triggered.
Keynes said many times that a government big enough and powerful enough to control or manipulate aggregate demand is obligatory. The State must be all-powerful. He meant the central bankers.
The key basic component of setting the future by decree, the idea of State planning is as we might expect heavily present in the actions and foibles of the “liberal market capitalist” (end of quote) central banker clique. Headed by the US Fed, the ECB, BOJ, BOE, China's central bank, and others, these Defenders of Capitalism stoutly maintain they are totally opposed to economic planning and welcome the anarchy of the capitalist consumer society – driven only by egoism and greed. In fact they are five-year plans to reward the central banksters and encourage political tyranny.
For 2008-2013 we have an easily-measured and analyzed, full 5-year plan of the central banker clique. Taking only the US, its probable total of public + private debt in April 2014 now stands at about $160 trillion. China's debt total has grown at least 10-fold since year 2000 and is now out of control.
Can this ever be repaid?  No way.
Getting People Back to Work
Lenin can be identified as the real “father of five-year planning”. His self-styled role as the champion of the people and above all his fiery oratory enabled him to win full Soviet Peoples Praesidium support on its first lecture, February 21st 1920, for his Goelro plan targeting the total electrification of the not-yet-founded USSR. The symbol was “The Lamp of Ilyich”, a lightbulb, using Lenin's second name – Vladimir Ilyich Lenin.
Stalin founded the USSR in 1922. Lenin's Goelro “electric power infrastructure” plan was dumped in 1931. From later that year it was officially replaced and superceded by Stalin's infamous plans.
The irrelevance of the always-stated goal of “full employment” in Keynesian State economic planning, for the central bankers, is ultra clear. Their only goal is the repudiation of previous State debt, by their selected Tyrant, and the creation of new and larger State debt. The process can take a variable amount of time, before mayhem ensues – but it always comes.
Ukraine is an excellent, bad-good example of 5-year plans. Until the “Maidan Flash Mob Moment” the five-year plans were alive, if not well in Ukraine. Placed under various disguises of newspeak terminology, including neoliberal newspeak, they stacked up an orgy of violence for a little while later, further down the You Tube.
Stalin hastened and deepened his plans for Soviet 5-year plans, in concertation with Lenin before probably poisoning him (historians and journalists still discuss the subject), following capitalist Germany's hyperinflation nightmare of 1922-1923  http://www.usagold.com/germannightmare.html. While it suited him, which was not for long, Stalin defended “sound money”.
Stalin was also soon able to peddle his plans as a National Security surrogate in a young USSR menaced by hostile scheming capitalists. Having an uber-powerful and deadly secret police, and the cult of semi-random violence using “disappearance in the night”, helped him a lot. The world's central bankers who heavily invested both in Stalin, and in Hitler, helped even more. Major private bankers were of course also on board from the start. One famous example is the grandfather of George W. Bush who before, during and after the 1941 termination of the Hitler-Stalin pact, and declaration of war between Nazi Germany and the USSR, and between the US and Germany, continued to invest in both!
In Germany, the hyperinflation “interlude” among other things reignited the Spartakists and their attempt to create an ideal socialist society. This did not “get the people back to work”. The 1919-20 Spartakist Revolt led by Rosa Luxemburg was destroyed by street fighting – nothing like the uprisings of Kiev's Maidan Square or Cairo's Tahrir Square. Destroying the Spartakist Revolt, by the Kaiser German army using heavy artillery, probably cost 250 000 German lives through 1919-24.
The Weimar liberal-bourgeois Republic starting in 1920 and ending in 1932 ensued from this. It was so corrupt and ineffective – and quickly shunned by the banksters – that it was a sitting duck for Adolf Hitler to overthrow by the ballot box and install Nazism, made popular by “Keynesian economic miracle”.
Don't Count The Collateral Debt
Neither Stalin nor Hitler counted the collateral dead. Being mentally-unhinged Tyrants such things were unimportant to them. Centrl banksters idem.
Stalin had no interest at all in the body count needed to ram through his State planning fantasy. Lenin and the early revolutionary communists had already shredded and repudiated all Russian debt from the previous Czars. Stalin's five-year plans had no need for logic, rhyme or reason. There was no point making even the mildest criticism of them - the firing squad sufficed. Apart from show trial victims killed for Defective Ideology - measured in the thousands – the collateral economic war body count was measured in millions.
In fact, in Stalin's case, the favored method of eliminating defective ideology was mass starvation. It was simple but very effective.
The major point is that debts run up by both of these “grand economic experiments” of the time, were however vastly smaller than debts run up since 2008, by exactly the same bankster clique, but the Debt Forgiveness process will be the same. Absorbing and shuffling the debt bubbles created by born-to-fail economic, financial and monetary planning needs war, and can only lead to war, sooner or later.
After that, “the counters are set back to zero”. Taking one quite recent example, during the run-up to the 2003 Iraq war government-friendly Western media was stuffed with learned, elite-vetted and approved economists sincerely explaining that massive bombing of Iraq would enable a huge postwar reconstruction boom, using Iraq's oil as collateral for extreme new borrowing by the New Approved Iraq. What could be nicer? We can call this War Keynesianism.
At least as important, this is a Universal Paradigm so why should it be different for other countries? Certainly including the West's “liberal market capitalist” (end of quote) economies and societies.
The “New Ukraine Plan”, as far as we can surmise at this time, is a classic example featuring the same basic ingredients. First the country is destroyed by civil war or international war, and its old debts – mostly to Russia – disappear. Ukraine's collateral may be somewhat thin on the ground (if not underground – it has huge domestic gas and coal resources, for example), but this is only a trifling detail for the bankster clique, who will very likely first predate all private savings in whatever Rump State emerges, to huge applause from the Western glove puppet media. As we know, at this time, the related and classic trick of the banksters is under way – they have ordered FX brokers and traders to completely shred the national currency. Using economic terror, Stalin-style, the peoples' savings can then be swallowed whole by the banksters with only a few blowback street demonstrations, needing “firm action by the authorities”. What could be nicer?
Lenin's Flat Cap Economics
The bankster program of “planned economic recovery”, as we know, only concerns keeping a tiny wealthy elite high up the greasy pole, next to the political tyrants who execute the bankster plan. Way down on the ground, in the so-called “real economy”, times can only be dire. Food shortage is always a classic lever of economic terror, but oil and electricity shortage are two new elite favorites.
By turning food and energy into rare commodities this makes them “collateralizable”, in other words you can bank on that – if you are a bankster and have the political glove puppets well under control. Encouraging these puppets to imagine they are Tyrants, or to become Tyrants, also helps. Being mad, they are easier to manipulate. The money printing presses can then whirr yet more frenetically, new debts can be racked up to replace the ones that were dishonored, and using the chaos of war – any kind, civil or international – the game can play along for quite some while. But of course not forever.
Lenin's early revolutionary communists, at least in print and in speeches, wanted to avoid this. They had the theory of Marx and Engels to orate with, but they were however quickly drawn, like moths to a lamp in the night or flies drawn to you-know-what, by the exciting idea, for them, of planning everything in a Super State. This put them straight into the banksters' trap. Both Marx and Engels had heavily described and analyzed the workings of Capital, and why it runs on an ever-declining, ever shrinking time fuze inevitably resulting in periodic or cyclic Crises of Capitalism.
For Stalin, the capitalist crises of German hyperinflation and the 1929 Wall Street crash were all he needed to pursue his megalomaniac-paranoid fantasies. Hitler, with his uber-classic “Keynesian remedies”, used exactly the same rationales and conclusions. Being mentally ill, neither of them could avoid the banksters' trap, which is always set and always primed for sucking suckers into it.
For the banksters and the Tyrants, small is not beautiful – and nor is peace. No bankster wants to live with small-sized, truly democratic, humanist governments or nations, because their collateral is usually small, the people are not cowed and terrorized, and the ability of these small-is-beautiful economies and societies to cook up wars, is low.
Throwing away the baby of Marxism with the dirty bath water of Stalin is however a mistake. The Marxist analysis can help, to be sure with corrections for what has happened since the late 19th century, but today however, you need very few corrections or updates. The banksters have cooked up a Crisis of Capitalism straight out of the 19th century, so unfortunately we will have “epic events”, probably rather somber.
By Andrew McKillop
Contact: xtran9@gmail.com
Former chief policy analyst, Division A Policy, DG XVII Energy, European Commission. Andrew McKillop Biographic Highlights
Co-author 'The Doomsday Machine', Palgrave Macmillan USA, 2012
Andrew McKillop has more than 30 years experience in the energy, economic and finance domains. Trained at London UK’s University College, he has had specially long experience of energy policy, project administration and the development and financing of alternate energy. This included his role of in-house Expert on Policy and Programming at the DG XVII-Energy of the European Commission, Director of Information of the OAPEC technology transfer subsidiary, AREC and researcher for UN agencies including the ILO.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Foreclosed Homeowner Beats Big Bank; Judge Voids Sale of Man’s Home

from americafreepress.net

APRIL 21, 2014   AFP


By Ronald L. Ray —
In the ongoing “war for plutocracy,” by which the Rothschild dynasty of financial pharaohs and the weasels of Wall Street seek to separate the common people from their property, the debt-slavers normally count on the dutiful support of the courts when turning distressed homeowners into America’s homeless. But Snohomish County, Washington Judge George N. Bowden showed both courage and character on January 30 when he voided the foreclosure sale of Jacob Bradburn’s home by giant Bank of America (BOA).
In a sense, Bradburn’s story is that of the American “Everyman.” Following the 2008 economic collapse, caused by avaricious Big Banks, Bradburn fell upon hard times. He turned to his mortgage servicer for help in keeping his home, only to hear the advice given by seemingly every servicer and credit card company.
Because he was still current on his mortgage, he was told he had to “miss a payment” before he could qualify for refinancing. Like so many other debtors before him, Bradburn did so, but the conundrum of bank-induced consequences was such a “convoluted case in the minefield of mortgage foreclosure litigation,” wrote Bowden, that even the legally trained judge’s mind struggled with the muddle of facts.
Immediately after the missed payment, the BOA snake constricted around its prey. Bradburn was denied refinancing. A dispute arose over how much money he continued to owe on the house—not uncommon in the quicksand of additional interest andpenalties inflicted on delinquent homeowners, even when their delinquency was caused by a bank’s demand. And in the midst of Bradburn’s continuing efforts to seek assistance from the predatory lending institution, BOA foreclosed extrajudicially on his home and sold it out from under him. So much for helpful customer service.
But the BOA constrictor lives in a continent-wide jungle, designed to enrich the banksters through a complex secondary mortgage market where beneficiaries of promissory notes and mortgage instruments are ultimately unknown, and the actual holders of a mortgage change hands regularly. The name of this usurer’s paradise is Mortgage Electronic Registration System, Inc. (MERS), created by bankers for bankers.
Connecticut attorney Christopher G. Brown explains that MERS is like a private club for plutocratic poobahs—mortgage originators and secondary buyers and sellers—designed to prevent the “inconvenience” of paying government fees and taxes for registration each time a mortgage is sold. This eases a repeated change of creditors, enriching investors as much as 40 times over simply holding the mortgage. Often, transactions occur with deliberate anticipation of default and foreclosure. And, as in Bradburn’s case, MERS acts as a “placeholder” for the unknown actual creditors, preventing any equitable settlement of the mortgage debt prior to foreclosure.
Wading through the morass of names and contradictory claims by BOA, MERS and other financial entities involved, Judge Bowden concluded that the institutions violated both the strict requirements of the Deed of Trust Act and the Consumer Protection Act, prior to the home foreclosure sale. This included failing to appoint an independenttrustee.
Most surprisingly, Bowden then granted partial summary judgment for Bradburn and his attorney, Scott Stafne, of the law firm, Stafne Trumbull, LLC. This means that, even assuming all the facts in favor of BOA, evidence pointed overwhelmingly towards the violation of Bradburn’s rights. Bowden voided the foreclosure sale of the Bradburn home and ruled that BOA, et al., were subject to “liability under the Consumer Protection Act,” due to “an unfair or deceptive practice, [which] occurred in a trade or commerce, and that those practices impacted the public interest.”
Bradburn can continue to sue the banksters, and, most importantly for now at least, he can keep his home.

Ronald L. Ray is a freelance author and an assistant editor of THE BARNES REVIEW. He is a descendant of several patriots of the American War for Independence.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Ireland convicts two ‘banksters’

from taipeitimes.com


Two former executives of Anglo Irish Bank were found guilty Thursday of committing fraud in a loans-for-shares scandal — the first convictions to stem from a banking crisis that brought Ireland to the brink of national bankruptcy.
After an 11-week trial, a jury found that former Anglo finance director Willie McAteer and lending director Pat Whelan illegally loaned 450 million euros (US$621 million) to 10 top clients in July 2008 on condition that the men — property developers deep in debt to the bank — would use all the money to manipulate the market by buying Anglo’s own slumping shares.
Prosecutors demonstrated that the bank told all 10 customers that, should Anglo’s shares continue to slump, they would have to repay only a quarter of the debt, an illegal condition. The trial also heard evidence that several loan contracts were later fraudulently rewritten, with bogus dates, to lower the clients’ repayment requirements to zero.
The jury acquitted Whelan and McAteer on related charges of providing 169 million euros in loans to the wife and five children of the bank’s biggest investor, Sean Quinn. In 2008, Quinn was Ireland’s richest man, but had bet his business empire on the continued success of Anglo. The Quinn family loans — also provided specifically to buy Anglo shares — required 100 percent repayment.
McAteer, 63, and Whelan, 52, face minimum 5-year prison sentences. Judge Martin Nolan said he would consider what punishment to impose at an April 28 hearing.
The same jury on Wednesday acquitted Anglo’s former chairman and chief executive, Sean FitzPatrick, of fraud in relation to all 16 loans, ruling that he had not played a direct role in the scheme. FitzPatrick faces a second fraud trial in October, when he is due to face charges of hiding more than 120 million euros of his personal loans from shareholders.
Anglo was a key financier of Ireland’s so-called “Celtic Tiger” economy and, for a decade of unprecedented growth, its most celebrated financial success story. Its shares peaked over 17 euros in 2007, but then the global credit crisis exposed the bank’s reckless lending practices. As Ireland’s long-runaway property market buckled in 2008, Anglo shares lost three-quarters of their value and executives sought surreptitious investment from their own clients to turn the tide.
The gambit failed as foreign banks and hedge funds, seeking safe bets, stopped buying Anglo bonds and demanded repayment.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

'Antitrust in the New Gilded Age'

from economistsview.typepad.com

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Robert Reich:

Antitrust in the New Gilded Age, by Robert Reich: We’re in a new gilded age of wealth and power similar to the first gilded age when the nation’s antitrust laws were enacted. Those laws should prevent or bust up concentrations of economic power that not only harm consumers but also undermine our democracy — such as the pending Comcast acquisition of Time-Warner. ...
In many respects America is back to the same giant concentrations of wealth and economic power that endangered democracy a century ago. The floodgates of big money have been opened...
Remember, this is occurring in America’s new gilded age — similar to the first one in which a young Teddy Roosevelt castigated the “malefactors of great wealth, who were “equally careless of the working men, whom they oppress, and of the State, whose existence they imperil.”
It’s that same equal carelessness toward average Americans and toward our democracy that ought to be of primary concern to us now. Big money that engulfs government makes government incapable of protecting the rest of us against the further depredations of big money.
After becoming President in 1901, Roosevelt used the Sherman Act against forty-five giant companies, including the giant Northern Securities Company that threatened to dominate transportation in the Northwest. William Howard Taft continued to use it, busting up the Standard Oil Trust in 1911. 
In this new gilded age, we should remind ourselves of a central guiding purpose of America’s original antitrust law, and use it no less boldly. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Long Battle For Ownership of America's Central Bank

from opednews.com

OpEdNews Op Eds 

(Article changed on April 14, 2014 at 10:14)

In the new America, the Virginia colonists were granted their own self-government, whereupon they devised their own system of currency, free from the taxing money system of the British crown.   But after a time, the long arm of oppression from the British government reached across the Atlantic and imposed its "blood" sucking, monetary rule on these poor devils once again.

The Currency Act of 1751 was the beginning of the British crackdown on the colonial money system, with the final Currency Act of 1764 specifically forbidding the colonies from issuing their own paper money.  

This forced the colonists to once again borrow their currency from the central bank of England, at interest, which soon created considerable indebtedness and unemployment among the colonists.   The very same "blood-sucking" swindle they had escaped when they left Europe was now being imposed once again, this time in the new colonies of America.   

Curiously unmentioned in most of our history books, the ensuing struggle between Britain and the American colonies over the right of the colonists to issue their own paper money (which had freed them from the need to pay interest on currency issued by banksters) was a significant factor -- perhaps the most significant -- in bringing about the American Revolution.

Benjamin Franklin explained it this way:

The colonies would gladly have borne the little tax on tea and other matters had it not been that England took away from the colonists their locally-created monetary system, thereby creating a good deal of   unemployment, debt and dissatisfaction.   The inability of colonists to keep the power to issue their own money, permanently out of the hands of George the III and the international bankers, was the prime reason for the Revolutionary War.

In his book, "Fourth Reich of the Rich," Des Griffin adds this:
The reason why the British abolished the right of the American colonies to create and issue their own money is simple:   the bankers did not want the colonists to be able to trade among themselves without steadily paying tribute to bankers.   The objective was clear  by forcing Americans to pay interest on all the currency they would essentially have to borrow from bankers on the other side of the Atlantic, European money changers could quite profitably enslave the colonies in a mountain of debt.

Keeping all this in mind, fast forward to the 1860s when . 
The European bankster planned to conquer America by helping precipitate civil war and then taking over our central bank

Before you can fully understand this takeover of our government's central bank by private interests in the late 19th century (and again in 1913), it's necessary to look more carefully at the origins of the coup d'etat which that takeover represents.

We've all been taught that the main reasons for the civil war had to do with the issue of slavery, but consider for a moment the possibility of another cause as well  the attempt by a European (mainly British) elite to foment still further the divide between our northern and southern states, which would, with any luck (for these early banksters), then leave our country greatly weakened by war, thereby creating an opportunity for these bloodsuckers to conquer the finances of our country and eventually, in many ways, conquer the country itself.  

  (Matt Taibbi's colorful description suddenly comes to mind: 

"The world's most powerful investment bank is a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.   In fact, the history of the recent financial crisis doubles as a history of the rapid decline and fall of the suddenly swindled-dry American empire, . ."

As German Chancellor Bismarck observed:

"The division of the United States into federations of equal force [The North & The South] was decided long before the Civil War.   These bankers were afraid that the United States would upset their financial domination over the world."

And today, this long forgotten and controversial part of Britain's past is being unearthed by an American historian living in London.   Tom Sebrell has uncovered evidence of strong support for the southern Confederate states in America's Civil War.   While Britain was officially neutral during the war, Sebrell is now leading walking tours of London that reveal untold stories of Britain's role in this war.

Well before the shadowy birth of our current Federal Reserve System, on Jekyll Island in 1913, we had a true, nationally-owned bank, created in 1791 with the support of Alexander Hamilton.   It lasted until 1811.     In those days, (privately owned) banks were given limited charters only, because our forefathers knew the immense power, to threaten the state, that could grow out of too-powerful banks that were privately owned -- in just the same way that immense power to threaten the state could grow out of too-powerful corporations, privately owned.

The second "national bank" (a privately owned and operated central bank) came into being in 1816 under President James Madison, supposedly to help offset the financial pains of the nation after the war of 1812.

Andrew Jackson, however, opposed the creation or existence of any privately-ownednational/central bank.   He said it was unconstitutional and that it gave an excessive and dangerous amount of power to one single entity.   He claimed that it wielded too much control over the Congress, but most of all, that it threatened our government through usurpation, by private foreign entities (i.e. the wealthy elite of Europe).

"If Congress has the right to issue paper money, it (that right) was given to them to be used by themselves (Congress)   and not to be delegated to (private) individuals or corporations."
--President Andrew Jackson, who vetoed the Bank Bill of 1836
Jackson argued that such a privately owned central bank (like our modern-day Fed) mainly served to increase the fortunes of an elite, wealthy, inner circle, and did so at the expense ofthe common man, e.g. farmers and laborers.   In 1832, Jackson won this banking battle, by vetoing a bankster attempt to re-charter the privately owned central bank of the time, and withdrawing the government's money from that bank one year later.

But there was an ugly response to President Jackson killing the so-called "National Bank" (which, like our Fed, was really a privately owned central bank, not really a nationally owned bank at all);   the European House of Rothschild was greatly upset that they had lost their fierce battle with President Jackson, over their potentially very lucrative ownership of our nation's central bank.

A few years later, in 1835, an assassination attempt was made on Jackson, alleged by many to be the result of him stopping the continuation of the privately owned central bank;   but Jackson survived the attack, due to both of the assassin's pistols misfiring.   This was the first-ever attempted assassination of a US President;    unfortunately it would not be the last, and each of the two subsequent attempts apparently also had to do with who would own and control America's central bank -- the government itself, or banksters.  

The Rothschilds persisted in their quest for financial control of the US, which persistence is reflected very clearly in a stunning proposal and explanation, written by the Rothschilds in a letter to New York banking interests, proposing a new "system" (of exploitation and systematic theft).   This "system" was explained to the wealthy elite of our country, just two years before Lincoln's assassination

This potentially scandalous letter reads  as follows:

"The few who understand the system will either be so interested in its profits or be so dependent upon its favours that there will be no opposition from that class,   while on the other hand, the great body of people, mentally incapable of comprehending the tremendous advantage that capital derives from this "system," will bear its burdens without complaint, and perhaps without even suspecting that the system is inimical to their interests."

  --The Rothschild brothers of London writing to associates in New York in 1863.

The "system" that the Rothschilds were referring to was yet another monetary control scheme capable of controlling government through the takeover of its banking and currency.   The "system," as it was described, would eventually come to be known as our "Federal Reserve System,"   which is no more federal than Federal Express;   but once again the banksters were attempting to fool the rubes, and largely succeeded, just as they have ever since.)

And so it would appear that the lessons we have all been taught in school, regarding the origins of our Civil War, have been prepared for us in a way that protects the ability of banksters to cleverly keep living as very well-fed parasites, who covertly and steadily steal from all of us, day in and day out.   Slavery seems to have served as a cover for motives far more sinister, and for ongoing theft on a massive scale, neatly hidden, which persisted much longer than the kind of slavery the Civil War ended.   Now, instead, we are all enslaved by indebtedness to banksters and to the "relentlessly jamming of their 'blood funnels' into anything that smells like money."

Sunday, April 13, 2014

We cannot salvage a growth-based economy

from opednews.com

By  (about the author) 

From http://www.opednews.com/populum/uploaded/one-percent-20120305-130.jpg: The top 1% captured 93% of the income gains in the first year of recovery.  The bottom 90% of Americans lost $127, the bottom 99% of Americans gained $80, and the top 1% gained $105,637.
The top 1% captured 93% of the income gains in the first year of recovery. The bottom 90% of Americans lost $127, the bottom 99% of Americans gained $80, and the top 1% gained $105,637.
(image by Voluntary Amputation for Flickr)

As any literate citizen knows, the global economic crisis was brought about by the unregulated banksters who run Wall Street. Few realize that in the aftermath of the near-collapse of the system of international credit, they have expanded a shadow economy that has been financed by taxpayer dollars. The total value of the derivative and commodities markets is now many times the world GDP. This system amounts to a pyramid scheme. If unchallenged, it is destined to leave the rich more powerful than ever and the 99% destitute. 

The growth-based debt economy is not capable of recovering, yet mainstream economists cannot seem to fathom why.

Classically trained economists are beginning to see that prospects for economic recovery in the post-bailout era are dismal to nonexistent. Although increasingly recognizing the consequences of crony capitalism, they must learn to question their most basic assumptions to understand the problem and its solution. The answer to the continuing global economic crisis requires a complete restructuring of the economy based on principles of environmentally sustainable local production and trade, worker-owned enterprises and nationalization of monetary policy.

It isn't hard to understand why the economic system cannot recover as currently structured. As jobs are shipped offshore, those being created in the US are mostly low-paying. This limits the flow of wealth upon which growth is based.  

With declining demand, corporations are unwilling to invest in the real (productive) economy in the US. Economists who blamed the consumer for incurring excessive debt failed to recognize that the banksters had created an economy that depended on ever-expanding credit. 

Driven to consume ever more by systematic brainwashing, Americans amassed huge debt under the assumption that the economy and especially housing prices would continue to grow forever. Sadly, they have not learned the lessons that the collapse of the Ponzi scheme that fueled the economy in boom times have to offer. There will be no return to prosperity as long as we continue to equate economic health to growth in GDP.

The architects of this system walked away with billions while homeowners, taxpayers and those dependent on the social safety net paid the price. Austerity for the 99% is hailed as the answer because it is the only way to maintain the privileges of the 1%.  In the face of austerity, the growth-based economy is destined to fail. Continuing to amass government debt to promote war over natural resources, sustain a system of corporate welfare and provide even fewer protections to a population devastated by economic collapse consigns future generations to debt slavery. We can only escape this fate by transitioning to an economy that places human needs over corporate greed.

Capitalism itself depends on the assumption of endless growth. When the wealth and power of the economic elite depends on its ability to extract wealth from workers, production has to increase exponentially. This requires markets for the goods produced. If jobs are not available and workers cannot provide this demand, there is nothing to sustain them. Even is the global elite were to suddenly realize that wealth distribution were in their best interest, it could not save a growth-based economy that is ultimately limited by the planet's finite resources. When the trillions of dollars in debt that the derivatives and commodities market begin to be called in as investments in the globalized economy fail, the collapse of 2008 will seem like a mild recession in comparison.

There is a solution. The United States is the driver of the global economy. If Americans want to create a world economy that is just to all, they will have to create a true representative democracy. That is the only way that the People can prevent human civilization from collapsing when the resources upon which it is based become inaccessible to the masses. It is up to us to unite to challenge the corruption that has made us the pawns of the global banking elite. We can start by making a campaign issue of support for a constitutional amendment that would establish that money is not speech and that corporations are not people with constitutional rights.

If we have any concern for our children we will put aside partisan differences and together, take back America for the People.

Readers interested in learning more about the consequences of endless growth and the principles of a steady-state economy are encouraged to read Enough is Enough  by Rob Dietz and Dan O'Neill.

Friday, April 11, 2014

SEC Insider Indicts Agency as Soft on Wall Street: Four Blunt Points

from businessweek

Here’s the best story you’ll read today out of Wall Street or Washington: Robert Schmidt’s Bloomberg News scoop on a retiring Securities and Exchange Commission trial attorney who used his farewell speech to scold his former bosses for being “tentative and fearful” when it came to going after top executives in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Let’s break it down into four blunt points.
1. Thank goodness for former officials who speaks their minds. And the shoe-leather reporters who catch up with them. More from my friend Rob Schmidt:
James Kidney, who joined the SEC in 1986 and retired this month, offered the critique [of agency timidity] in a speech at his goodbye party. His remarks hit home with many in the crowd of SEC lawyers and alumni thanks to a part of his résumé not publicly known: He had campaigned internally to bring charges against more executives in the agency’s 2010 case against Goldman Sachs Group (GS) The SEC has become “an agency that polices the broken windows on the street level and rarely goes to the penthouse floors,” Kidney said, according to a copy of his remarks obtained by Bloomberg News. “On the rare occasions when enforcement does go to the penthouse, good manners are paramount. Tough enforcement, risky enforcement, is subject to extensive negotiation and weakening.”
2. Kidney confirmed what revolving-door critics have been saying.Namely, that SEC higher-ups are more focused on getting lucrative jobs after their government service than on bringing difficult cases. Kidney, 66, has worked at the agency since 1986, except for a four-year stint at Aetna. He earned his law degree at night from George Washington University while working as a journalist. “I have had bosses, and bosses of my bosses, whose names we all know, who made little secret that they were here to punch their ticket,” he said. Maybe if “we the people,” acting through our representatives on Capitol Hill, paid talented civil servants wages commensurate with their value to society, more people such as Kidney would devote their careers to protecting the public good. Maybe they’d even rise through the ranks to set tougher policies.
3. Don’t get fooled by the statistics. Kidney made a critical point about the numbers the enforcement agencies throw around. The SEC, he said, should focus on the quality of its actions, rather than on filing as many as possible to promote its record to lawmakers and the media. “It is a cancer,” Kidney said of the agency’s misleading use of numbers. SEC penalties, he added, have become “at most a tollbooth on the bankster turnpike.”
4. And yet, Kidney didn’t address the cry to throw more bankers in jail. Let’s remember that the main complaint from critics of government enforcement is not so much that the SEC failed to extract additional civil settlements, but that criminal prosecutors didn’t try to put Wall Street big shots behind bars. Kidney appropriately limited his comments to his area of expertise: civil suits seeking money damages in which the government does not have to prove culpability “beyond a reasonable doubt.” That exceedingly high criminal standard of proof is, to put it plainly, really, really difficult to overcome in situations in which bankers argue they were, at worst, greedy or incompetent or both. The hard truth is that it’s well nigh impossible to convince a jury that a guy in a pinstripe suit who plays shell games with credit-default swaps (and what are those again?) is akin to a bank robber caught on surveillance pointing a gun at a teller.
Still and all, Kidney deserves a serious hearing and our thanks. More ambitious SEC civil suits would accomplish some measure of added deterrence, whether or not any “banksters” go to prison.
Barrett is an assistant managing editor and senior writer at Bloomberg Businessweek. His new book, Law of the Jungle, which tells the story of the Chevron oil pollution case in Ecuador, will be published by Crown in September 2014. His most recent book is GLOCK: The Rise of America’s Gun.

The SEC is Scared of Wall Street

from  ringoffireradio.com

Posted on  by Joshua De Leon •

The SEC is Scared of Wall Street

James Kidney was an attorney with the Securities and Exchange Commission who had been with the agency since 1986. He retired this month, but upon his leaving he remarked that the SEC was too “tentative and fearful” to bring Wall Street leaders to justice after the 2008 economic crisis.
“The SEC possesses an inherent responsibility to ensure that financial regulations are upheld and obeyed,” said Peter Mougeysecurities attorney with Levin, Papantonio P.A. “Any amount of slack in regulation stands a good chance of being exploited by Wall Street bankers.”
The SEC has become “an agency that polices the broken windows on the street level and rarely goes to the penthouse floors,” said Kidney. “On the rare occasions when enforcement does go to the penthouse, good manners are paramount. Tough enforcement, risky enforcement, is subject to extensive negotiation and weakening.”
Kidney wanted to bring charges against top Wall Street executives during the 2010 case against Goldman Sachs. However, according to Kidney, higher-ups in the SEC cared more about promotions and increased pay salaries after leaving their government jobs. Kidney said the SEC’s penalties have become “at most a tollbooth on the bankster turnpike.” This statement is true because when banksters get popped for malfeasance, they pay a fine and continue about their business.
The SEC’s lack of pursuit has drawn harsh criticism from financial reform advocates, and rightfully so. Wall Street banksters are being given too much leeway for crimes that should be punishable with jail time and asset forfeiture.
The Goldman Sachs case was high-profile and the bank agreed to pay a $550 million settlement for misleading investors by packaging and selling collateralized debt obligations connected to subprime mortgages, but the punishments handed to similar banks were light-handed and these big fish were essentially thrown back into the pond.  
JP Morgan paid a record $13 billion for a scam similar to that of Goldman Sachs, and, even then, no one was prosecuted or thrown in jail. Do these fines bother the big banks at all? Not in the slightest. JP Morgan will recoup most of that expense within two years, and, also, big banks create accounts specifically for fines and legal woes so any settlements won’t hurt their profits.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has criticized the SEC for its spineless treatment of financial misbehavior. She wants the Wall Street CEOs thrown in jail for damaging the economy, crippling the housing market, and killing millions of jobs. The economy has improved, indeed, but only in the macro sense and that improvement is concentrated among the one percent. Everyone else has stagnated or gotten worse.
Everything has remained the same in the realm of financial-regulation enforcement since the 1980s, and until the SEC can grow a pair and actually drop the hammer on Wall Street banksters, it always will.
“They [SEC leaders] mouthed serious regard for the mission of the commission, but their actions were tentative and fearful in many instances,” said Kidney.
Josh is a writer and researcher with Ring of Fire. Follow him on Twitter @dnJdeli.