Category Archives: A Complete Overhaul of Money Supply

Core Belief 9: A Complete Overhaul of Money Supply – Barter and Trade are fundamental to our species and all money, or any of its derivatives shall in future, be regulated in such a way as to never again enslave humanity in debt.

Capitalism . . . Creator of Poverty

The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie — deliberate, contrived and dishonest — but the myth — persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.” – JFK

According to one of my financial heroes, Bill Bonner, money is not wealth. It simply measures wealth like a clock measures time. Wealth is what has been produced, is made available and that which you can buy with money.

When banks print money out of thin air it is like adding an extra hour to a clock. It doesn’t make time any bigger, it simply distorts it and disorients the observer. What counts with money is that it is honestly made available to purchase goods and services. Honest money cannot be separated from the real economy where those goods and services are produced.

Say’s Law offers the wisdom that “You buy products with products . . . not pieces of paper.”

QE in the US, Europe and Japan is following Zimbabwe in separating money from the real economy. Trillions of dollars have been printed that mislead everyone into thinking they are wealthy, until they see the need for a wheelbarrow full of this pseudo wealth to buy real wealth – a carton of milk. We aren’t there yet but that is where we are headed!

Similarly, profit is not wealth but merely a measurement of overall business efficiency. When you combine these two illusions you arrive at the curse of the 21st century . . . debt. Debt offers the most efficient means of producing profit, by producing unreal money with few overheads.

With all of this in mind let me give you my perspective on what is going on and remember I’m no economist, but even to my simple mind we are now heading to an almighty financial catastrophe. I will use the car industry to make my point but the principles can be applied across today’s financial world. Continue reading

Banks & IMF Are Out of Control

As a species we are fallible and we recognise this in our attempts to construct laws and regulations which address human weaknesses and flaws. They are by no means complete and human fallibility continues to wreak havoc, more so when those same laws and regulations are removed or neutered by vested interest.

My regular readers will know that one of my hobby horses is the continued abuse of Greece by the Troika, something that is killing innocent Greek people through deprivation and despair. At the heart of this destruction is the IMF and its policy of ‘austerity’ that obligates countries indebted to it to cut social support programmes and hand over sovereign assets at discounted values.

“The organization’s objectives stated in the Articles of Agreement are to promote international monetary cooperation, international trade, high employment, exchange-rate stability, sustainable economic growth, and making resources available to member countries in financial difficulty.”

Further on from this, the frightening scope of its powers are clearly laid out.

Whilst the Fund can “make contracts, acquire and dispose of immovable and movable property and institute legal proceedings” from which nobody is immune, the Fund and its employees “are immune from every form of judicial process” and its assets “free from restrictions, controls and moratoria of any nature.” This includes freedom from any form of personal taxation for all 2400 employees!

With this unprecedented level of unaccountability, the Fund can do whatever it likes. In the case of Greece, it has done precisely this without seeming care or concern, in what has now been described as the ‘immolation’ of Greece. (Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines immolation as “to kill as a sacrificial victim”, which is the stand I have personally taken over the whole violation of this country.)

This lack of accountability has now been firmly placed in the spotlight, (with similar brutality), after its own internal watchdog, the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) submitted a report  to the board, (to whom they are solely accountable), which has roundly condemned how the Fund is being run.

Its top level staff have misled and misinformed their own board into becoming the champions of the euro project and which has led to catastrophic misjudgements on Greece. They have also failed to grasp the basic concepts of money theory that ensured they completely ignored the warning signs of an impending crisis within the EU, a ‘serious scientific and professional failure’.

EU insiders have used the fund to rescue their own pet project, with an unprecedented 80% of all available funding being used to bail out Greece, Portugal and Ireland. An ethos of misleading seniors was also extended to the IEO, in its investigations of the activities of “ad-hoc task forces”, where decisions and provision of information remained elusive.

Heads have turned to its managing director Christine Lagarde, who is now to stand trial in France over corruption charges and who has responded to this report with a statement that offers ‘qualified’ acceptance of its contents. Something I interpret as “I hear you” and no more.

This arrogance, by the boss and her organisation, has led to an era of negative interest rates that is devastating savings and the future of pension schemes, whilst ruining the banking system in its wake. Their policies continue without any recovery, or hint of recovery in sight. Here lies the true cancer created by the inbuilt lack of accountability written into the Fund’s Articles of Agreement.

It goes to the very heart of why we need regulations and accountability to guard against the horrific abuses that can occur when human fallibility is not held in check. Millions of people’s lives have been ruined by the mismanagement of this powerful organisation and its independence must surely now be put in question.

And all of this at a time when the European Banking Authority has just conducted a ‘stress test’ across the European banking sector and nobody has failed, nor has anyone passed, as there are no criteria for such assessments.

Instead a rescue package has been put together to stop Italy’s Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena collapsing and Deutsche Bank, defined by the IMF as “the world’s most systemically risky bank” is being ‘scrutinised’.

Of the 123 lenders covered in the last stress test in 2014 less than half have been covered this time and none of Portugal or Greek banks have been included. Neither will the results of 56 other banks that have taken the tests be published.

Like the IMF, lack of accountability and secrecy reign and beg two questions. Firstly, what was the point of these tests, other than giving the appearance that some form of regulation is being carried out. Secondly, what is the true extent of the fragility of these banks, given the millions of people are dependent upon them for running their personal and business finances.

This last point is even more significant when you consider that the world banking system is a carefully controlled cartel that is not open to competition. Cartels and monopolies offer the very worst of attributes of human fallibility in the unaccountable power and control they provide and a complete immunisation from healthy regulation and governance.

Thatcher and Reagan opened up the financial markets to unlimited growth and power, which has accelerated exponentially in the last 40 years and is now bringing the world to its knees, with an impending financial collapse that will make 1929 and 2008 seem but hiccups.

Only today the man convicted of the UBS £1.4 billion fraud, the biggest in British history, said that “major banks have done little to tackle the culture which allowed him to carry out his crimes”.

Indeed, the Financial Conduct Authority dropped a long-running enquiry into the culture of banking at the beginning of the year, with suggestions that former chancellor George Osborne had exercised pressure on the industry following last year’s surprise election win.

Never has there been the need for the re-emergence of democratically supported political power to bring these financial monoliths back under control. We need regulations that have teeth and can break the conglomerates up and return us to a banking sector that supports the needs of Society and not the needs of the few.

I worry that we hear nothing about the regulation of the financial sector from those seeking political office, either at home or abroad. It was strong leadership that gave them their power and it is that self-same strong leadership that can take it away again now.

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

‘Austerity’ . . . This Will Kill it!

Are we now seeing the beginnings of the destruction of the financial and corporate world as we know it? If this month’s Finance and Development report from the IMF, no less, is anything to go by, with its headline “Neoliberalism: Oversold”, the writing is certainly on the wall.

Before I go any further let me just offer a couple of official definitions of Neoliberalism so that we are all singing from the same hymn sheet.

  1. A modern politico-economic theory favouring free trade, privatisation, minimal government intervention in business, reduced public expenditure on social services etc. Collins Dictionary
  2. Neoliberalism is a policy model of social studies and economics that transfers control of economic factors to the private sector from the public sector. Investopedia.com

Over the last 30 years or so it has become very noticeable how there has been a gradual erosion of democracy, countered by an escalation in corporate power and unregulated abuse which caused the financial collapse of 2008 and continues unchanged to this day.

Interspersed with this we have been assaulted by ‘Austerity’ measures across the globe and which, it has become increasingly clear, are a device to sell off public assets at a discount to the private sector.

In addition, there has been an escalation in debt originated money supply that has placed governments in varying positions of obligation to financiers. Because of this ‘obligation’, lenders have not only demanded ‘Austerity’ but also increasingly violated the democratic process by ‘quietly demanding that governments go against, or ignore, the wishes of the people.

Both of these abuses were particularly evident in the case of Greek debt. Here a (newly elected) government referendum against continued ‘Austerity’ measures was not only ignored but harsher terms were inflicted, in what appears to be a punishment and to deter any repeat of such action in other debtor countries in the EU and elsewhere.

We have also seen public outrage and demonstration against the odious TTIP agreement, Fracking and in the UK the gradual destruction/privatisation of the NHS. These actions have been equally rigorously ignored/defended by governments and the non-elected technocrats in Brussels, showing a complete contempt for the people who actually pay their wages and expenses.

All of the above, plus a whole lot more, can be laid fair and square at the feet of the application of Neoliberal doctrines, as time is now showing. What time is also demonstrating is that they don’t work and are simply benefitting the already rich, by increasing their wealth exponentially at the expense of the many.

The bombshell this week is that the IMF experts, in the shape of Jonathan D. Ostry, Prakash Loungani and Davide Furceri, are actually confirming what we already know. I quote from the heading of their report

“Instead of delivering growth,

some neoliberal policies have increased inequality,

in turn jeopardizing durable expansion”

The paper goes on to say:

“Austerity policies not only generate substantial welfare costs due to supply-side channels, they also hurt demand—and thus worsen employment and unemployment.”

These findings suggest a need for a more nuanced view of what the neoliberal agenda is likely to be able to achieve. The IMF, which oversees the international monetary system, has been at the forefront of this reconsideration. ­

OR, to you and me . . . they got it badly wrong!

It explains why the IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, is at loggerheads with German banks over Greek debt. The banks want blood from Greece and the IMF are now recognising this will not work and will jeopardise the standing of themselves and Brussels. It could also be another nail in the coffin of this currently disintegrating project that is the EU.

(Even President Obama is now backing Social Security programmes he was previously against for the American people.)

And if that wasn’t enough, according to Zero Hedge Euro-Area manufacturing is near stagnation, damping confidence in the strength of the regions recovery.

The cracks are beginning to appear in the established and very abusive order of things, if the perpetrators are now publicly admitting there is a problem of their own making. We are talking here of fundamental beliefs that have dictated how governments rule and what place, if any, democracy plays in the process.

Millions of people are homeless and struggling to feed themselves, some so overwhelmed by what they have been made to face that they have committed the tragedy of suicide. That the civilised world has been taken to this place is a lesson for us all.

The values demanded by ‘the people’ are the correct moral values for Society because it is the majority who are expounding them. The minority view can only ever be the view of vested interest, as this paper has identified and the IMF are to be respected for allowing it to be published. If it were Brussels it would have been sat on!

So my friends, where do we go from here? As you know my mantra is “Awareness breeds understanding and understanding breeds change”. There can be no way forward with ‘Austerity’ after this damning report.

Any government who continues to pursue these measures should be ousted from power as totally lacking in credibility and care for the people who have placed their trust in its leadership. And that goes for Brussels as well!

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

Panama . . . Manipulative Genius

Panama photo

In my last piece on this subject I postulated that this particular leak seemed different to other major leaks, like the Snowden revelations, because it somehow lacked focus.

Since the leak hit the global media we have been treated to a wide ranging variety of stories as to its purpose. These include the desire to blackmail world leaders and corporations, with the seeming exception of those from the US. Credible, if the almost immediate resignation of the Icelandic Prime Minister was anything to go by.

Then there was the assault on both Russia and China by the Guardian, along with revelations which have also affected the remaining members of the BRICS group – India, Brazil and South Africa – seen by the US as a serious threat to its global dominance, particularly now they are launching their own banking system.

It was then suggested that these leaks are part of a long term strategy to assist the Rothschild’s and the US to implement a single world currency. Only a few short years ago this would have been labelled ‘conspiracy theory’ but today less so, as more comes into the open about how the world is being run.

A new revelation has since come from Ellen Brown, someone who has fought the corner for Public Banking for years and for whom I have enormous respect. The Panama Papers, she argues, are another front in the move to eradicate cash and turn all currencies and money digital.

This will then give the Neoliberal cause complete control over a Society no longer able to preserve its financial independence and privacy and therefore subjected to absolute control over access to personal finance.

Ellen’s suggestion has a ring of truth to it. By leaking the dastardly tax havens and the people using them there is now a political momentum to score much needed brownie points by closing them down and taking us one step closer to the abolition of cash.

That is, all of them except those now operating in Nevada in the US, to which the Rothschild’s are but one financial manager secretly moving their clients’ money from elsewhere in the world to this new tax haven!

Given the trillions of dollars involved, this vast influx of funds would certainly boost the dollar’s value and concentrate the single biggest hoard of cash in one place . . . the US. It would then be an easy job to trap and eradicate a sizeable chunk of cash in one simple enactment of legislation.

However, we must not overlook the reason these tax havens came into being. It was John D Rockefeller who first used Panama, in the 1920’s, specifically to benefit his vast oil business. It had nothing to do with money laundering per se but rather to do with ‘profit laundering’.

He would buy oil from Saudi Arabia or elsewhere and sell it to his own tanker company, (whose fleet was registered in Panama), at a very low price.  With such a low price, little profit is made on this first transaction and therefore little or no tax is payable to government.

The tanker company then sell the oil (out of their tankers) to distributors in the US or Europe at a very very high price. With the ships being registered in Panama no tax is payable on the vast profit realised from this financial jiggery pokery.

So in essence, Panama was set up to register oil tankers and mineral ships in order to make the ships themselves ‘tax free profit centres’ for the oil and minerals they transported from third world countries and the like, to the US and Europe.

(That the IMF have just come out and stated “the world’s financial regulators had long been “alarmed” about Panama’s lax approach to taxation and corruption but failed to take action” I think we can all take with a HUGE pinch of salt!)

Closing this loophole would upset a very powerful lobby indeed and so one wonders, in amongst all of the seeming contradictory stories, what the hell is going on and who is telling the truth?

For me THEY ALL ARE!

It is a stroke of sheer genius by the CIA (who are credited with the leak, according to another report). In one fell swoop they have achieved several mighty objectives for the Neoliberal cause.

Firstly, they have scared the hell out of the wealthy and powerful around the world by attacking the heart of their wealth. Secondly, they have created the need for those wealthy to move their money to the US.

Third, they have diverted global attention with propaganda at its most sophisticated which, like Terrorism, holds our attention for a while by the sheer enormity of its outrageous behaviour.

In the meantime, the Neoliberal cause is furthered by slipping in legislation (TTIP) and ‘Austerity’ measures that can only benefit the rich, whilst tightening control over Society by constantly removing their democratic rights.

I cannot for one minute believe the end result of this attack on tax evasion will come to any good. Once our attention has been again diverted by some equally headline grabbing disclosure, the tanker companies, in particular, will remain ‘profit centres’ and the dismantling of cash will continue.

The only fly in the ointment at present is our own Prime Minister, ‘Dodgy’ Dave Cameron, who has become embroiled in the tax avoidance scandal and this could harm his efforts to coerce us to remaining in the EU, with his equally dodgy referendum.

That his mate, Barak Obama, is coming to his aid with a personal appearance in the UK to make an impassioned plea for us to ‘Remain’, speaks volumes about just how worried the financiers are.

Let us not forget, this is the same Barak Obama who, for the whole of his two terms in office, has been negotiating and pushing through, in secret, the most evil of trade agreements that will take the unprecedented step of handing the democratic rights of the people over to the corporate world.

The sheer manipulative genius with which our attention is being diverted and confusion manifested, whilst the Neoliberal agenda is furthered demands respect, if it were not so loathsome in its attack upon the hard working people of the world.

They are already paying more than their fair share towards Society’s infrastructures of Health and Education etc., something the rich are able to constantly avoid.

The 99% don’t have any options when it comes to paying their taxes. It is stolen out of their pay packets and then used to subsidise the rich, supported by an eroding democracy which gives them less and less say in the matter.

Awareness breeds understanding and understanding breeds change.

Until the next time.

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

1865 . . . ‘Austerity’ Is Invented!

I am half way through an incredibly well researched book: The House of Rothschild . . . The World’s Banker 1849 – 1999 by Niall Ferguson. It has opened my mind to so much I have never thought of, nor considered before.

What has jumped out of the page is the mind-set of this family. Whilst I find loathsome their narrow focus upon getting their full dues from debt – compound interest and asset stripping – I admit to a grudging respect for their devoted loyalty to each other and their religious faith.

They rocketed to wealth and power after the battle of Waterloo in 1815, when their speedy lines of continental communication (mainly carrier pigeons) told them of Wellingtons victory when the rest of the UK believed he had lost.

They purchased every stock and bond within their means at rock bottom prices and when the news of victory finally arrived the value of their holding went through the roof. This formed the foundation of their financial empire and by remaining close, as a family, they have been able to grow that fortune and power across the globe.

As a part of this mind-set, it is apparent how quickly they adopted an utterly ruthless stance to the acquisition of their money and power. Also, how calculating they have been in applying their talents to the extremely profitable support of the (varying) successes of governments, in waging incessant wars with each other across Europe.

In 1859 Austria suffered a defeat in Italy from which it did not recover and would never again be regarded, in financial terms, as a great power. Indeed, Austria’s reputation continued to decline as it became more insolvent struggling to finance its needs and cover the costs of its past aggressions.

With its credit rating on the floor, the Rothschild’s saw the opportunity to provide Austria with its much needed funds. However, there was the question of the country’s existing debt, which also needed financing and it is here we see the introduction of ‘Austerity’. To the family the solution lay in selling off state assets to finance debt, of which they had their particular eye on the Austrian railways.

The Rothschild’s had seen the lucrative future of the railways and focussed upon building a rail infrastructure across Europe. In providing cash strapped Austria with loans the family could acquire further rail stock, at a cheap price, to enhance their investment.

It is here that we gain a further and profound insight into the mind-set of this banking family and their attitude to the global arena in which they operate. Less and less did they look at countries as national infrastructures of people and cultures but rather that each country simply represented a ‘business’ with assets and liabilities, of which state assets offer huge potential.

In the case of Austria, the family realised that its desperate need for funds created the opportunity for a complex of interdependent transactions of loans and asset acquisition that gradually liquidated what had become an unsustainable empire.

This new attitude to their moneylending has prevailed right up to the present day, as we have seen recently in the case of Greece. Here state assets, from water to islands, are being purchased at knock down prices, as an asset stripper would dismantle a bankrupt company.

A bankrupt company however, does not have a whole nation of people dependent upon it. The despair of the people, in seeing any way forward for their future employment potential and quality of life is of no concern. As with Greece, its cultural heritage and demeanour are of no relevance. The country is a ‘business’ that is failing and therefore the appropriate remedial financial action is necessary to protect loan revenues and capital repayments.

From this it can be seen that we now have an environment in which the needs of the people are disregarded. Financial return is everything and something that is increasingly evident across the globe.

It is a testament to just how powerful this family have become that their beliefs and values now dominate our global Society. There is an overbearing mind-set that eschews social values and the wider perspective necessary to live Life to the full on Planet Earth. It would not be too dramatic to say that our freedom is being ‘ring-fenced’ by these dominating financial beliefs.

Life cannot be lived by such narrow rules and regulations, which are already causing mass unemployment, the widening gap between rich and poor, food and water shortages and adding to the threats now coming from climate change. It is here that we face our greatest challenge, as the need becomes apparent to reverse this trend and reinstitute broader based values and beliefs into our world.

Such values have always come in the past from our religious beliefs, in providing the necessary moral code by which we live Life and interact with each other. They formed the foundation of the ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ by which business used to be conducted and whose morality and integrity have now been abandoned.

With the decline in the credibility of our traditional religions there is now a void, allowing narrow financial values to dominate and for which there is currently, no credible and effective counter belief.

‘Austerity’ may have been a clever and astute device to enhance the coffers and power of the few but it will cause the downfall of our species, something those few will not be immune from either.

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

OPENNESS . . . The New World Order!

 

 

 

For millennia, secrecy and stealth have been the primary ingredients in the acquisition and maintenance of power within our species. It is how the 1% have ruled, whilst setting the people against each other to keep them from turning on their rulers.

We have now moved into a whole new world where maintaining the ignorance of the people is becoming more difficult. From WikiLeaks to Edward Snowden, the odious Trade Agreements and now the ‘Panama Papers’, human morality, supported by the internet, is driving a coach and horses through the very heart of the traditional power base of the Old World Order of the ruling few.

As far as this latest revelation is concerned, reports suggest that sums of between some $1 to $2 trillion have been taken out of circulation and hidden away. Whilst we have all been aware that this sort of thing goes on, the sums now brought to light are truly staggering and could resolve the current plight of the poor if put back into circulation.

When you consider that this money was originally created out of thin air and then passed to the very people who already have more of it than the rest of us and who then take it out of circulation and hide it away (often legally), the whole current financial system is corrupt.

It is not only the credibility of the financial system itself that is now in question but also the governments who condone and support it. After the American Senate bullied Switzerland into opening up its secrecy rules, “to subvert further tax evasion”, we now find that the game has been moved to, of all places, Reno, Nevada, USA!

Rothschild has opened a trust company here and is moving clients from places like Switzerland and Bermuda, where new international disclosure requirements are now required, to Reno where they are not. You really couldn’t make this stuff up!

What we have here is a lack of any morality whatsoever, as the rich and corporations use and abuse the services of Society at a greater level than the rest of us but, unlike the rest of us, are not made to contribute their fair share to support those services.

At a time when technology is putting people out of work and with no solutions being attempted by governments, rather they are focused firmly upon supporting neoliberalism, it makes this type of financial abuse not only criminal but morally obscene.

In amongst all of the reporting on these latest revelations, are the various interpretations of vested interest. These range from a conspiracy to unseat the Icelandic Prime Minister (11.5 million pieces of dynamite information to do this? Hmmm!), to discrediting President Putin who, it would appear, does not use this type of financial service (although I am sure he is not ‘lilywhite’!).

Attempts have even been made to undermine the authenticity of the global group of journalists involved. I’m not sure this group have an ulterior motive, although the media they supply certainly do. Sadly, the Guardian, in spite of its valiant support of Edward Snowden, has introduced the red herring of Putin in its reporting of the whole affair.

The fact that all of this information, from WikiLeaks up to the present, has been made available without profit being sought speaks volumes about the integrity of the people involved. Whistle-blowing has become the last bastion of morality and integrity in an increasingly corrupt neoliberal world. Its values represent something inherent in all of us and something we deeply respect . . . the truth!

What, for me, is the most significant aspect of this whole story is that 370 journalists from 70 different countries supported these latest disclosures and worked in an unprecedented scale of co-operation for over a year to bring these revelations to light. It is a development of unparalleled importance in the current balance of power within Society.

It may be that their efforts will be suppressed by global media in the hope that the story will fade and business can continue as usual. I am not so sure, if Ed Snowden and WikiLeaks are anything to go by. In this 21st century we are no longer ignorant, nor are we misinformed (for very long), as the world of Information Technology opens up the secrets of the increasing levels of abuse that currently run our world.

The Old Order know what is going on but are, I would suggest, helpless to stop it (even with Surveillance), because their world has been constructed and can only succeed through stealth and secrecy and our new world of ‘Openness’ is simply not conducive to supporting or tolerating this.

Perhaps the worm has now found an effective way of turning, as we seek a return to a world in which the needs of the 99% receive the compassionate attention and support that is currently directed at the 1%.

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

Lies, Damn Lies & The EU

All that is necessary for evil to triumph is

for good men (and women) to do nothing – Edmund Burke.

I’m sure you’ve all seen the little glass domes at Christmas with the lovely scene which, when shaken, becomes clouded by a snowstorm. When I watched Cameron on last Saturday nights news, supported by the full political circus – clever lighting, a rostrum strategically placed in front of No 10 and carefully worded speech (which he read VERY carefully from) – all I saw was a ‘snow storm of words’ spouting out of his mouth, like the snow machines used on ski slopes to make the dodgy bits perform better.

Like the Christmas toy, he was obliterating the real issues surrounding the EU and our vote on 23rd June. Immigration, Child benefits paid abroad, closer integration and the other emotive issues are designed to divert our attention from the real issue of the unregulated and unaccountable power Brussels has now amassed over our lives.

(E.G. The bureaucrat in charge of implementing TTIP has publicly declared “I do not take my mandate from the European people.” And neither do our ‘elected’ representative’s lady! . . . if ignoring 3 million European voters, who signed the largest petition in history against this odious agreement, is anything to go by!)

According to statistics this bloated bureaucracy is costing taxpayers £30 million A DAY to support. That’s £10.4 billion last year! It’s been in place for 60 years now and so, even at just half these amounts, it has cost us a staggering £312 billion . . . just for the UK and there are now 28 member states!!)

If we had all kept the money and ploughed it into our own social services we would have few health, education and welfare services problems today (and if we took out the compound interest we pay bankers for the use of our money and debt (currently £24,491 per person), those services would be the envy of the world).

Instead we have birthed a monster that grows ever more powerful and autocratic by the day as it erodes democracy and the ability of the people paying for it all to bring those abusers to account. What has evolved is a playground for the banks, where they can apply corrupt banking practices, enslaving us in odious debt that is sanctioned by this monolithic state.

Exaggerating? Look at Greece last year. It offers a spotlight on the reality of what the EU has become. Here odious banking practice and corrupt politicians brought the Greek people to their knees with the application of odious debt. Where was the EU to curb such appalling banking moneylending practice?

Instead of protecting the Greek people and the rest of us, with proper laws to stifle such activity the European Commission – charged with proposing legislation and implementing decisions – sided with the financiers to bring in unelected technocrats to do their bidding.

It was repeated in Italy, Sicily and elsewhere and does not have even the slightest vestige of democracy . . . And we are paying the wages of the people who got us into this mess and have no intention of getting us out. It truly beggar’s belief!

And whilst all of this is going on we are treated to our elected representative’s diversionary tactics, screaming about greater vulnerability to terrorism and crime if we leave, lower employment and the piddling amount to money being sent abroad in child benefits.

(Let’s not forget that the benefits fraud comes mainly from white UK nationals who are third generation benefits system benefactors and who think they are entitled to free money and don’t care who pays for it! Our benefits system needs a complete overhaul in which ALL who want to claim have to pay in for at least 4 years (say) before they can benefit. Those in dire need would have access because they are a part of a family who are paying in and are therefore entitled . . . but this is all for another day.)

There is only ONE question I will ask myself before I vote on 23rd of June and it will be this:

“How would I feel if I knew that Brussels was being dismantled and replaced with a much smaller body, charged with developing a European ‘Trading’ Union. Its task would be to weld together and support European businesses to go out into the global marketplace and develop trade for Europe. It and the businesses would be supported by taxpayer money and in return those businesses would undertake to pay their full taxes back into this EU Union.”

Just knowing that Brussels was being dismantled would not only get my vote but also make me feel better. A wrong (of many decades) has at last being righted. I don’t know about you but it would give me back my dignity and a sense of empowerment?

We have the power to do this as European voters but we need to become organised. Here again we have the wherewithal in the fabulous communications system now available to us, with Social media and independent news sources.

I am not an organiser, I am a writer and so I make a heartfelt plea now to those out there with the abilities to organise. I am thinking about the ex-finance minister of Greece, Yanis Varoufakis, who has just launched a new Pan-European movement DiEM25 – http://www.diem25.org/  What about the much neutered European trade union movements – https://www.etuc.org/ the online petition experts like 38 degrees in the UK – https://home.38degrees.org.uk/ together with The Taxpayers Alliance – http://www.taxpayersalliance.com/ and the many other like-minded groups who could be brought together.

This unification would then play a decisive part in unifying electors into a powerful voting machine that, at last, can begin to call the shots and make our elected representatives accountable once more. How easy would it then be to create hung parliaments that would have to listen to what the people want before we then put any party into power.

Brexit is not the disaster that the bankers and bureaucrat’s media cry it will be but rather the wakeup call for a necessary and fundamental reform of Europe. And don’t for one minute think the UK is on its own here.

Our fellow taxpayers/voters in the other member states have also had enough of EU domination and will quickly follow our lead. Particularly if they see we have a replacement body that makes a lot more sense and which they would, I am convinced, readily support – something the bureaucrats are terrified about and hence the vague, wishy washy and temporary agreements Cameron came back with, ALL designed to buy them more time.

We now have a golden opportunity to make the most important decision about current political life and do what the majority want to do . . . and that is not to wreck the EU but replace it with a democratic union that is beneficial to the people and not just the elected (and unelected) few.

Until the next time.

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

2016 . . . Feudalism is Returning

The private banks have argued for a long time now that the issue of money should be exclusively theirs. They further argue that to allow governments this power would see political abuse of the monetary system. It is a sound argument, which has allowed financiers to amass not only great wealth but also vast power that now, as we are seeing, is usurping the powers of elected governments and eradicating democracy.

The end result of this is that in this 21st century we are being taken back to a feudal Society, where the people own very little and are enslaved by debt.

In feudal times the peasants (people) were allowed to farm and cultivate plots of land by renting that land from the powerful (Barons). They rarely achieved ownership of the land they worked because a large portion of what they grew was taken by the Landowner as rent for the land. This kept the people at a barely subsistence level from what they farmed. If they had a poor year they incurred debt, because of inadequate supplies of crops with which to pay the rent. If they were unable to ‘grow their way out of debt’ they were enslaved in serfdom.

I see many similarities between then, when Magna Carta came into force and today. Our private money system has created a property boom which is now pricing property at such astronomical rates, more and more people are being returned to renting their own home, or denied that opportunity, with little chance in the foreseeable future of this situation changing . . . A rentier Society.

Technology is being allowed to replace jobs with no political will to lead a vision of employment in this new era. Already the young are consigned to a form of slavery, as educated graduates, burdened down with debt, are finding it less and less possible to engage in a career with a meaningful future and income opportunities, leaving them with no option than to rent their homes . . . A rentier Society.

Cash is being abolished to enable our money to become wholly digital to support negative interest rates, where we pay the banks to look after our money! This means we will have no independence or control over our finances, as was the case when cash ruled. We will soon see our money frozen at the press of a button if we somehow transgress. Remember what happened to Julian Assange and Ed Snowden . . . all accounts frozen without any judicial process to confirm their guilt . . . A financially repressed rentier Society.

Given such a lacklustre environment in which Society is expected to function it can only mean a return to the feudal times of centuries ago. And this in a time when we can send people into Space and perform the most miraculous of medical operations and healthcare.

Nowhere is this more obvious than the odious TTIP trade agreement, which is being forced upon governments around the world. It will reduce populations by 50% by starving people, abolishing pensions and spreading poverty, according to Michael Hudson in an interview with Bonnie Faulkner this month (I am indebted to T J Greene @greentak for this one) http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/02/michael-hudson-discusses-the-new-global-financial-cold-war.html

This supposed trade agreement is to force privatisation and disable government regulation.

. . . And I quote:

“There are a number of related aims: to nullify environmental protection regulations that cost money, to nullify protection of labour, and to nullify attempts to tax natural resources or economic rent. The idea is to turn roads and the transport system into toll roads, which will be owned by foreigners and run at a high charge. The Internet and the water system will be sold off and made into toll systems, to charge for their services and for other basic needs. This will impose a neo-feudal rentier economy throughout the world as the finance, industrial and real estate (FIRE) sector takes over the government sector.”

. . . And just to hammer home the point:

“The neoliberal plan is to create a post-industrial society. By “post-industrial” I mean a neo-rentier economy returning to feudalism. Instead of governments taking the lead and providing basic services at a low price to become a competitive economy, neoliberalized governments sell roads and energy, electricity, water and sewers to buyers that are going to charge whatever the market will bear. This is going to impoverish the country. It’s the opposite of what development economics taught through most of the 20th century”.

Austerity becomes a lot clearer when you realise that all of the debt slushing around this beautiful Planet is now so vast it has become unrepayable. The bankers have engineered this so they are now able to take repayments in the form of sovereign services, transport services, health services and water and sewage systems.

We are returning to a feudal society, by way of debt, that has been allowed to grow beyond prudent levels. Greece, which I rant so much about, is a precursor of what is to come. Where a country is simply broken up to pay odious debt that has been foisted upon its people by irresponsible bankers, aided and abetted by equally irresponsible politicians. Their beautiful islands are being sold off at rock bottom prices like some second hand car auction. TTIP is preparing us all for such action!

In spite of looking very black, there is something within me that continues to say “there will be a turning point”, as there always has been throughout our history. These tactics were tried after the 1929 collapse and seen to fail miserably. John Maynard Keynes, no less, preached against such action and was shown to be right. Financiers think they know better these days and only time will tell.

Very much in our favour now is the fact that we are no longer the global serfs of centuries ago, as I have said before. We are much better educated and with the powerful means of communicating with each other globally. When and where that turning point will be I really don’t know but happen it will . . . We simply have to believe!

(As an aside, you may not be aware, as I wasn’t, that 800,000 names (2% of eligible electors!) have ‘dropped off’ the electoral register, following changes to the way citizens register to vote in the UK. That’s 800,000 people entitled to vote who no longer can help to change things. The National Voter Registration Drive – #NVRD – is driven by passionate people who are rising up to address their governments failure to manage and nurture a ‘healthy’ democracy. Actions like this are on the increase and happening everywhere . . . hence my optimism!)

Awareness breeds understanding and understanding breeds change.

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

The Bank of Taxpayers . . . Why Not!!

Banking photo

In my last piece I postulated that when you get underneath the superficiality of our global financial systems it is the taxpayer who is the ‘lender of last resort’.  http://www.globalmagnacarta.org/2016/taxpayers-are-the-global-bankers/

When country’s get into difficulties it is the IMF who comes to the (expensive) rescue, with suffocating ‘Austerity’ conditions as a part of the lending terms for that desperately needed money. And when it comes to global power plays, the new layer of governance the EU represents was brought into being with taxpayer money.

Both of these examples illustrate one thing . . . they have considerable risk attached to them. In the former case it is the questionability of whether a country can actually pay back, given its fragile state.

In the latter, who could say with any certainty that this ‘instant monolith’ would actually succeed. Indeed, time is now showing that it is failing miserably, both as a democracy and a viable trading area, given the bloated bureaucracy that has birthed from outset to create this new layer of global governance. Billions of taxpayer money have been irresponsibly wasted with no accountability in evidence.

No bank in its right mind would venture anywhere near such deals with their own money. The IMF however, gets its money from the 188 countries who contribute to being members and they use this (taxpayer) money to conduct their business.

It’s a sort of elephantine hedge fund, using other people’s money to finance its deals but unlike a hedge fund those ‘investors’ – the international taxpayer – have no say and get no rewards for the risk their money is put to, only constantly lowering living standards and employment opportunities.

At least with the ever reducing ‘legitimate uses’ their taxes are put to a good deal of the money is used to run public services for the benefit of Society, although gradually now being swallowed by private corporations who reduce services to provide necessary profits.

If the taxpayer is to be ‘lender of last resort’, I don’t necessarily have a problem with that provided there is something in it for them for the risks they are taking. Provide them with the same ‘risk and reward’ philosophy that is an intrinsic part of business and you have a complete micro Capitalist system!

Our own ‘Taxpayer Bank’ would have endless positive effects upon Society. It would provide the finance for public infrastructures such as a state of the art Health Service, superb travel infrastructures like roads and rail as well as caring support systems for young mothers and the elderly. All because there is no ‘middleman’ concerned only with profit.

If you look more closely at this concept, what we are talking about is virtually replacing our current (very unpopular) tax system with a means to raise funds in a much more acceptable fashion, from the interest earned on loans to finance Society’s needs.

A Taxpayer Bank would only be accountable to its shareholders and customers . . . the taxpayers . . . who taxes would be dramatically reduced through the workings of a public bank.

The fundamental significance of this type of public banking is that it circulates its profits back into the economy, rather than taking them out, as is the case with private banks. It is a fundamental law of ALL Life. . . that everything is recycled and not hoarded or taken away!

Nature is the most powerful and perfect example of this law. Trees shed their leaves, which then rot down and provide the nourishment for those trees and so much else. Birds circulate pollen to bring to life the plants that feed us, as well as the flowers that calm us. Even squirrels, who ‘hoard’ nuts for the winter, eat those nuts later. If left, they will rot down to nurture future growth or become new young trees. Nothing is taken away or hoarded.

Our current financial system is the ringing evidence of the need to recycle, as it hoards vast amounts of money that should be put to good use back in Society again. This hoarding is a part of the control mechanism that represses the majority. Our global money supply is never adequate for Society’s needs, deliberately so to restrain us.

What manages this supply is the needs of the bankers, not Society. It is here that we get to the very fundamentals of money issue by private banks. QE has cast a spotlight on this controlling practice as the trillions printed have been aimed at the already wealthy, deliberately widening the gap between rich and poor.

On the other hand, a Taxpayer Bank for the people working alongside private banks, as is the case in Switzerland, will be good for the whole economy. The private banks can service the needs of the global corporate world and public banking the private individual and small businesses . . . with the taxpayer earning into the bargain! It will also provide the essential competition so important to a healthy economy and Society.

In the US the Bank of North Dakota is run on such lines, funding local businesses and the community. Its financial structure is reassuringly sound, because it circulates its income back into the economy. When the global banks went bankrupt in 2008 and stole from the taxpayer to stay in business, this bank thrived with sound banking practices and continues to thrive today, whilst those same global banks remain bankrupt.

Why aren’t there more banks like this in the US . . . Ask the private banks!

There is not a single aspect of a properly accountable Taxpayer Bank that I can find detrimental to Society. The financial rewards are unquestionable. The psychological benefits of a tax system such as this would not only be positive and motivational to people but also bring a nation together.

I believe there would be a sense of a shared responsibility, through this type of open banking, as they watch their investment translate into their very own world beating social services, financed by a commercial operation. The perfect welding together of Socialism and Capitalism!

We just need a new breed of people going into politics with this sort of collective vision.

Until the next time.

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes

The IMF . . . Uncloaked!

You must stick to your conviction but be

ready to abandon your assumptions. – Denis Waitley

In my quest to urge we all grow Society’s awareness of the current world order, I am indebted to the vlogger Lisa Haven for making me aware of the Articles of Agreement of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). This provides the perfect example for my case.

Through the secrecy of the current world order we are controlled by our ignorance . . . no more, no less . . . and so the following is a lengthy piece. It covers some frightening facts about the immunity from accountability the IMF have awarded themselves in order to exercise that control.

I hope it explains why they were able to impose unelected regulation upon the Greek people last year with such ferocity and without any come back whatsoever from any government. The Troika comprising the European Commission, The European Central Bank and the IMF are one and the same club!

As background the IMF was formed out of the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944 and its objectives are quoted in Wikipedia as follows (Remember this bit, it’s important later):

“The organization’s objectives stated in the Articles of Agreement are to promote international monetary cooperation, international trade, high employment, exchange-rate stability, sustainable economic growth, and making resources available to member countries in financial difficulty.”

188 countries are currently members and contribute funds into a pool which individual members can draw upon if they get into financial difficulties. That this organisation came into being at the end of World War II is, to my mind, very significant.

International financiers had funded ALL sides during this global warfare, as they have done for centuries. Global levels of indebtedness were at a peak and so, therefore, they could exert pressure to consolidate their position at the pinnacle of world power. (The morality of financing and therefore encouraging all aspects of violent conflict across our species, irrespective of race, colour or creed is for you to decide.)

I give full credit (no sarcasm intended here) to the IMF for making their Articles of Agreement so publicly available. I can only surmise that they could see their only application would be for the medical profession, who might apply them as a non-addictive cure for insomnia!

I have therefore restricted myself to what I think the reader will be most interested in . . . their unassailable power!

Under Article IX we find Status, Immunities and Privileges which place it above global laws and accountable to no one (the following I paraphrase where verbose):

Section 1 Purposes of Articles (Boring!!)

Section 2 The Fund shall have the capacity to make contracts, acquire and dispose of immovable and movable property and institute legal proceedings – nobody is immune!

Section 3 The Fund however, is immune

Its property and its assets, wherever located and by whomsoever held, shall enjoy immunity from every form of judicial process except to the extent that it expressly waives its immunity for the purpose of any proceedings or by the terms of any contract.

Section 4 More Immunity

Property and assets of the Fund, wherever located and by whomsoever held, shall be immune from search, requisition, confiscation, expropriation, or any other form of seizure by executive or legislative action.

Section 5 Even more Immunity

The archives of the Fund shall be inviolable

Section 6 Unaccountable freedoms

All properties and assets of the Fund are free from restrictions, regulations, controls and moratoria of any nature.

Section 7 (Boring!)

Section 8 Immunities and privileges of officers and employees

Anyone associated with the fund, it seems, is immune from legal process when doing the work of the Fund. They also appear to enjoy ambassadorial status (immunity) insofar as immigration and alien restrictions are concerned, as well as the same travel privileges of (more immunity).

Section 9 Immunities from taxation.

All moneys, property and financial transactions are immune from taxation and custom duties. Nor is the fund liable to collect or pay any tax or duty.

Employees, no matter what rank, are exempt from personal taxation – All 2400 of them!!!!!!

(And they berate the Greek people for not paying their taxes . . . DUH!!!!!!!)

Section 10 demands that each member state institute whatever legal procedures are necessary, in their own country, to ensure the terms of this Article may be adhered to and advise the Fund of the detailed action it has taken.

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The above is extracted from just 3 pages out of the 89 contained in the full document, which you can read at your leisure here https://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/aa/pdf/aa.pdf. As you will gather from my simple resume, it is quite mind numbing in the extent of the powers the financiers have awarded themselves and to which 188 governments have signed up to and keep in force.

The issues this raises for me are numerous. What first jumps off the page, to my simple mind is . . . If they cannot be prosecuted, because they have paced themselves beyond all global legal process, how is this document itself legally enforceable? After all it is governments who make their paper money legal tender!

If it is beyond the law then presumably it is ‘outlawed’ and with only limited rights, as is every other entity that is ‘beyond the law’? I am no lawyer and I am sure this has all been legalised, somehow or the other but it is a frightening precedent that has been kept in force and out of the media spotlight for 7 decades.

This causes another worry, as they do not convene with elected governments but only with the country’s financial institutions, such as the Fed in US and Bank of England in UK. Here I come back to Greece again. It now becomes clear how they were able to insert, without any resistance, unelected technocrats into the very heart of the country’s democratic process, something they appear to treat with contempt.

When I boil it all down, it seems as though the only loyalty and accountability this Fund recognises is to the application and maintenance of debt. It is the obligation to debt that gives it this unreachable power. Yet the funds it manages and which it uses to apply debt, to gather and exert this power, are provided by the 188 country members . . . from our taxes, as governments don’t have any money of their own!

If this is the case we have a situation where we, the taxpayers, are funding an unelected and unaccountable global body that declares its intention (and I quote here just one of the 6 purposes):

(ii). To facilitate the expansion and balanced growth of international trade, and to contribute thereby to the promotion and maintenance of high levels of employment and real income and to the development of the productive resources of all members as primary objectives of economic policy.

The current state of world economics and employment can best be summed up by the Funds Managing Director Christine Lagarde (on over half a million “tax free” dollars remember!), in a speech about the then problems within Europe and given in Brussels on 10th December 2013:

“First and perhaps most important, growth rates and output levels still remain well below where they should be. With unemployment rates as high as they are, this gap between actual and potential growth rates is likely to remain large for the foreseeable future.”

Well, with all due respect lady and without your grasp of global finances, this humble taxpayer would like his money back please, together with an end to a body who seems to have successfully made themselves immune to the chaos and pain they are now inflicting upon the 99%.

Awareness breeds understanding and understanding breeds change

 

Until the next time

 

Thinking from his Book: Global Magna Carta. Returning Power to the 99% . . . If They Want It! By J T Coombes