Tag Archives: Banking

Grenfell Tower: Murder by ‘Austerity’

It is a week since we witnessed the horror of this human tragedy. It seems that since the Great Fire of London in 1666, successive governments have limited their concern for providing safe and secure habitation for the people under their care.

Grenfell Tower is a frightening indictment of political, financial and religious doctrines that are now no longer fit for purpose.

We live in an era of ‘professional’ politicians who, in leadership roles, care more about their power than the people. Our current Prime Minister initially ignored the survivors of this tragedy and then, urged by her advisors I am sure, sickeningly gushed over the families of victims of a terrorist attack just days later.

They are servants to global corporations who finance their election efforts and hence the continuing low turnout from voters, who know they are now limited in ability to sway political opinion.

Our financial system too, is outdated and in chaos. Every single aspect of the Grenfell Tower horror, from the blazing building to the rescue services (who did superbly), were affected by lack of financial resources and dwindling budgets.

‘Austerity’ is not a financial discipline, (to show we are being prudent), but a tool by which financiers can grab sovereign assets cheaply. We have seen this in Greece, where everything from their beautiful islands to even their water supplies have been sold off to private interests at knock down prices. This, from odious moneylending practices that create unrepayable debt and sovereign servitude – the very essence of how and why ‘Austerity’ is implemented.

Creating money is simplicity itself. When you and I take out a loan no money changes hands! A computer entry is placed in your bank account for say, £1,000 and a similar entry is placed in the banks account, showing that loan as an asset to ‘balance’ the books. No gold has been sold. No cash has been taken out of the banks vaults. It is simply created out of thin air, which we then pay interest on.

‘Austerity’ becomes a sordid joke as the amount of money put into the economy is dictated by the private banks, who have been authorised by government to run this very lucrative and controlling function of Society. Any amount of money can be supplied to Society but the banks only allow sufficient to keep us in permanent debt to them.

For evidence look at the trillions of Q E printed by the Federal Reserve in the US and the ECB in Europe and passed directly to banks to buy their bad debts, (created by lending money to people they knew could not afford to repay). That money bypassed Society, who were forced into the type of ‘Austerity’ measures that caused the horror of Grenfell Tower.

In Germany and other countries there are public banks, run by the local authorities who support small businesses and their community infrastructures – Health, Education, Police and Fire services etc. No wonder Germany is financially strong and why the ECB want to close them down and transfer their services to private banks.

Finally, in the past our traditional religious establishments have been responsible for the moral fibre of Society. In my lifetime, these values and power have been eroded by the growing worship of money and what it can buy, eroding integrity and moral fibre in the process.

The loss of power and influence of Western religions, in my opinion, reflects their inability, or desire, to bring their beliefs into the 21st century to reflect the world in which we now live. This failure, in turn, has diminished their ability to exercise any integrity and moral fibre over how our political and financial institutions do business.

This erosion of morality has resulted in the horror of Grenfell Tower. It highlights how ‘money’ desperately needs cheap labour but refuses to then take responsibility for looking after that labour, through the conduit of political policy and action which it so heavily influences.

We are in a whole new (global) world now, where antiquated taxes, political practices and a wholly unsupportive financial system* can be seen to be hopelessly out of place in serving Society’s needs.

What I am now looking for is a political party who can ‘repackage’ this country, by providing an infrastructure that supports the efforts of business as well as the community, providing transport infrastructures, premises, employees (as well as Health, Education and Community services for their employees, retirees and their families).

That infrastructure has to be paid for and that must come from creating public banks to service local authorities, together with a whole new tax system that ignores where a company’s headquarters are based but instead charges that corporation each time it uses our country’s facilities.

A ‘Transaction Tax’ that they and their customers pay on every financial transaction, from buying a hairpin to making a derivatives trade. Nothing is excluded because ALL use the infrastructure to make that transaction, in one format of another. You Use It . . . You Pay – no matter where you live and work from!

We need leaders with this sort of new vision, which addresses the many abuses Society increasingly face with current 18th century thinking. They must address global warming, the education and future of our young (do they have one anymore) and an ageing Society that has given us its support and now requires our support in return. Above all, they must urgently address the impact of IT upon future employment and create new employment opportunities for our young.

Society is getting more and more angry with each passing abuse that comes to light and that anger is waiting to be converted into the means by which we build a new and more caring Society.

Are there people out there who want to use their power to this end? Society is in desperate need now, to avert another Grenfell Tower.

 

Until the next time.

*This paper by Professor Richard A Werner D Phil (Oxon) University of Southampton – ‘Do We Need Central Banks’ – takes apart the global financial system in a comprehensive manner I have not come across before: https://professorwerner.org/shifting-from-central-planning-to-a-decentralised-economy-do-we-need-central-banks/

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

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

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

Our Toxic Financial System – Part 3 of 3

Nathan Rothschild

In Part 1 http://tinyurl.com/z3x2yzb I justified my use of the word ‘toxic’ in the title from the dictionary, which described it “Causing social harm or unpleasantness” – The Free Dictionary by Farlex. In this final part I would like to offer examples of how the biggest global monopoly in our history is now consolidating its vast powers and whether they are of benefit to Society or not.

In Part 2 http://tinyurl.com/j3xu9uq I alluded to how money comes into being. Monopoly allows them to simply create loans on a balance sheet and bring money into existence (out of thin air) for the duration of the loan and on which we pay interest.

This monopoly to supply our money no longer needs to hold reserves of tangible assets – like gold – to support the value of that money. Indeed, to protect this monopoly they actively work against any country looking to bring its own currency into existence. Recently (and quietly) disclosed in Hilary Clinton emails), it was confirmed that Gaddafi was looking to introduce a gold backed currency into Africa and never quite made it.

With no control over how much cash is circulated into Society, because it is no longer controlled by how much gold reserves the banks have to hold, we have seen a printing bonanza since 2008, as money is flooded into the economy to stave off what should have been an economic collapse and recession.

These vast amounts of money were supposed to be put out into Society to spend on goods and services, thereby stimulating the economy back into a healthy position. A monopoly however, allowed banks to hold on to the money to boost their own severely strained reserves (they were all technically bankrupt after 2008). They also gave cheap loans to the corporate world. These were used to buy out the competition and buy back their own shares, thereby artificially holding up their share prices, in an era of falling sales.

This stimulated the growing gap between rich and poor, as the banks directed their money in just one direction – the corporate world. Like a gardener directing his hosepipe to water just a part of the garden, those plants that received it flourished and the remainder withered.

In spite of all the reassurances from the experts, like the Federal Reserve, that ‘QE’ would sort the problem of growing unemployment and economic slowdown, it didn’t. In addition, these private banks have continued to merge risky investment banking with their consumer banking, the very problems that heralded the collapse of 2008.

Because of their monopolistic position the banks are again looking to the public to bail them out, by taking current account money and savings next time. (Don’t raise the fact that we have a government protection scheme to reimburse us in this event . . . that is our taxpayer money again that will support this second grand theft!!)

As we become aware of what is happening the astute will take their money out of the banks and hoard it under the bed, as we have done for eons when distrust of the banks sets in. This time, because they are so fragile, the banks want to pre-empt our astuteness by getting rid of cash, something already under way in – Canada, Denmark, France, India, Israel, Norway and Sweden, to name but a few.

If we are restricted to plastic, (which ordinarily need not present a problem, if properly overseen) our money is no longer in tangible form as notes and coins but simply numbers on a computer screen and their monopoly will allow them to deny us access at will. Their monopoly control then becomes absolute. Their reasoning is that it will enable them to crack down on money laundering and tax evasion.

Indeed, only in the last year or so Switzerland has been under attack from US agencies to make public the many corporations who deposit funds in secret bank accounts to avoid tax. Having done the gentlemanly thing and given in, Switzerland is now seeing this money transferred to Reno, Nevada in the US, where that same privileged tax status is available to those same corporations!

Debt obligation is underwriting the flourishing of this financial monopoly and as with all monopolies, Society is the poorer for it. We have absolutely no control over current financial abuse and our governments seem to be helpless because of their debt obligations to theses very banks.

Private banking has its place in Society, I believe, as a provider of services to the corporate world. What current banking practice has established is that we need a separate ‘public banking’ system, for the private individual and accountable to those very people, as both customers and taxpayers.

Here there is a ray of light in no less a place than Switzerland, the home of global banking. This country operates both public and private banking services, the former of which provides the citizens with one of the best health services in the world. Now there is a move to demand that government, not the private banks, has the exclusive power to create the country’s money.

The reasoning for this is summed up as follows:

  1. Currently money is created as debt, resulting in severe malfunctions.
  2. The country’s money supply is under private control and therefore a monopoly.
  3. Bank deposits are not secure.
  4. Money supply rises and falls in line with banking profitability, not social need.
  5. The money supply fosters inflation.
  6. Debt issued money is only a benefit to banks and not to Society.

Interestingly this has not been widely covered by global media and left to the specialist publications and social networking to be heard. (Another ray of light in our rapidly changing world!) It is early days but here, at its very centre, is evidence of awareness on the injustices of debt driven monopoly banking.

We have a new, plain speaking breed of political leader emerging and showing integrity and a desire to break from the current world order of unelected corporate rule . . . like Jeremy Corbyn in the UK and Bernie Saunders in the US.

They can’t do it on their own, as Gaddafi, Lincoln and JFK have previously demonstrated but in league with like-minded politicos we could see real progress to a less abusive monetary system . . . and so much more.

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 ‘Elite’? . . . Hmmmmm!

We are not here to curse the darkness, but to light the candle that can guide us through that darkness to a safe and sane future. — John F. Kennedy

In my own battle against the financialisation of Life by the rich and powerful I resist with every fibre of my being reference to ’The Elite’. Dictionaries have formal definitions of the word ‘elite’ which make me even more entrenched in my stance:

Oxford English Dictionary – The choice part of a flower (of society, or of any body or class of persons.)

Merriam Webster’s – A successful and powerful person.

Collins – The most powerful, rich, or talented people within a particular group, place or society.

The ‘choice part’, ‘successful’, ‘talented’ they may be but what is their contribution to Society in the grand scheme of things?

William Shakespeare, Jane Austin, Mark Twain and in the present JK Rowling are, to my mind, true ‘Elitists’, not only in the quality of their work but also that it contributes something positive to Society by lifting and touching the hearts and souls of millions across the globe.

The likes of Jamie Dimon CEO of J P Morgan, Jes Staley of Barclays, Michael L. Corbat of Citigroup, Ross McEwan of RBS, Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England and Janet Yellen, Chair of the Federal Reserve in no way evoke the same feelings of respect and awe.

And yet they are amongst this supposed group of the ‘Elite’, along with 62 of the richest billionaires who, according to the new Oxfam report, own as much wealth as the poorer half of the world’s population, a staggering indictment of 21st century abuse. I could not readily name 10% of these mysterious ‘Elite’ people, let alone identify them if shown pictures of them and yet they hold such sway over the rest of us.

They have immersed us in a global financial system which is enslaving Society in debts of staggering proportions by restricting and controlling the amount of money in circulation, keeping us in a state of constant financial repression.

They have now commandeered the political arena whose members are increasingly viewed as ‘Elite’. Here, it seems to me that the word is defining the ability to remain above the law and free of any accountability for a total lack of responsibility to the people who elect them to power.

As more secret trade deals are made public, designed to further restrict our say on how we run our lives, many are now demanding to know what positive contribution these ‘Elite’ are making to Society?!

However, we should not feel as though we are being singled out as this beautiful Planet, the sole provider of everything that sustains Life here, is also experiencing the same murderous treatment. We are the only species in existence to poison our own food, as the oceans are made ever more toxic with what is poured into them, without any move for regulation.

Is it any wonder we hear only last week that hundreds of Britons – and many others I am sure – are caught trying to join jihadis? The young are not fools (they are wholly indebted by an expensive education) and their sense of frustration at the ongoing lack of worthwhile future employment, or owning their own home, demand some means of fighting back against this ‘Elite’. Terrorism may not win in the end but it provides a sure sense of some satisfaction that the current shield of ‘Elitism’ is being dented.

Unlike Shakespeare and Jane Austin, this ‘Elite’ have nothing to offer Society, indeed they take with such wanton greed that they are delivering us to our collective destruction. Only the Planet will survive and they seem not to understand that they too will be included in that destruction, so total will it become if this financialisation of Life continues.

‘Elite’ is regularly used by the media, deliberately so in my opinion, as part of a global propaganda campaign to make the majority feel inferior, helpless and therefore suppressed. We are constantly told that global cyber/terror attacks are imminent and then left without any further explanation, producing a sense of helplessness, foreboding and dependence upon the state. The precise reason this propaganda tool (one of many) is used so frequently and with such prominence.

If this media ‘Elite’ relates to those excelling at bringing the majority to its knees and the total destruction of this planet, through unregulated Capitalism, then I agree. I will not, however, be coerced into living my Life by the claustrophobically narrow confines and values of financial management alone.

The most effective antidote to propaganda is always the truth. We release ourselves from helplessness by simply becoming aware. In that awareness we grow a greater understanding and with that understanding we invoke 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

BIS . . . A Legally Unaccountable Bank!

I believe this is my most important contribution, so far, to our growing awareness of how the world works. I am deeply indebted to Adam Lebor for his book ‘A Tower of Basel’ and its huge contribution to this awareness. More details here: http://tinyurl.com/omhkyen

 

Like me, you may have seen the odd reference to the Bank of International Settlements and had no idea what it was, nor what it did . . . and that suits the BIS just fine!

As the central pillar of our global financial system, it is responsible for furthering the interests of central banks by building and maintaining the architecture of transnational finance.

It came into existence in 1929 as the brainchild of Montague Norman, then governor of the Bank of England and one of the most powerful men in the world, together with Hjalmar Schacht president of the German Reichsbank. Its express purpose was to administer German war reparations (financial compensation) to the allied countries involved.

Both Norman and Schacht were very shrewd financiers, with ambitions way beyond a simple administration office. They immediately set about creating a global bankers ‘club’, bringing together the heads of the main central banks with monthly meetings, which continue to this day in absolute secrecy in their offices in an 18 storey tower building near Basel railway station in Switzerland.

Today its members include Ben Bernanke, former head of the Federal Reserve, Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, Mario Draghi of the European Central Bank and the central bank governors of Germany, France, Italy, Sweden, Canada, India and Brazil. The object is to share information and build consensus on the direction of our global financial system.

Returning to its roots, in 1930 the governments of UK, France, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Japan and Switzerland signed the Hague Convention making the BIS untouchable, as the most privileged and legally protected bank on the Planet.

(The “You can no longer touch us”) Article 10 of the BIS Constituent Charter states:

The Bank, its property and assets and all deposits and other funds entrusted to it shall be immune in time of peace and in time of war from any measure such as expropriation, requisition, seizure, confiscation, prohibition or restriction of gold or currency export or import and any other similar measure.

With it becoming ever certain that a second world war was imminent, Schacht and Norman believed financial – not political – disciplines were the only way to ensure the world could be rebuilt from the carnage and return Germany to its strong trading position in Europe.

To achieve their aim it was necessary to maintain the smooth flow of global finance during the war years and provide a haven for gold transactions without political interference. Whilst these objectives appeared laudable, they also carried sinister connotations the BIS have since found difficult to shake off.

Schacht was a financial genius and as Germany prepared for war, Hitler made him General Plenipotentiary for the war economy, placing an emphasis upon delivering the finance necessary to build a vast German war machine. He achieved this with the help of his connections in the BIS. It can be seen from this that financial values dominated, over political considerations, as ‘enemies’ were working together to finance the war.

Before outright hostilities, Austria was ‘incorporated’ into the German Reich and its gold moved to the BIS where it was held for use in Berlin. This was the first of many transactions that involved Nazi looting and plunder during the war. The BIS justified its part by reminding everyone that it was above political intrigue and that the proper financial paperwork had been carried out for these transactions to take place.

In Spain, General Franco was helped to power not only by German and Italian fighting men and machines but also by the hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of aid also provided by these countries. The latter managed and facilitated by the BIS.

At the height of the Second World War, when armies were killing each other by the tens of thousands, international finance continued unimpeded through the BIS, financing the slaughter on both sides.

When Czechoslovakia was overrun, the entire gold supply of the country was taken over and deposited with the BIS, sacrificed to the needs of transnational finance and the Third Reich. This ‘legalised looting’ was a particularly dark time in the BIS history, exacerbated by also taking in deposits of gold teeth that had come from the concentration camps, all of which were used to finance the German war effort.

It was Cicero, two thousand years ago who observed that “The sinews of war are infinite money”. The BIS updated that wisdom through their actions during the war years to read “The sinews of war are the transnational flow of infinite money!”

When the war finally came to an end attention turned to rebuilding Europe. This saw the introduction of the equally independent International Monetary Fund and World Bank, threatening the very existence of the BIS. However the US demanded, that in return for aid, they wanted the integration of Europe and the erosion of national identity, in the interests of reducing friction between countries. This offered the BIS new opportunities.

Rather than compete with the IMF and offer loans to troubled economies, nor fund development projects as did the World Bank, it would offer discreet services for financial co-ordination, something in huge demand at that time. Europe would need harmonised exchange rates, swift international payments mechanisms and eventually a new single currency, the very core of BIS capabilities.

With the BIS working in the background, in 1951 France, West Germany, Italy and the Benelux states signed the Treaty of Paris establishing the European Coal and Steel Community. This created a ‘common market’ for coal and steel which was regulated by this unelected supranational institution.

It is here that the birthing of the EU truly began, setting a pattern of ‘economically expedient’ excuses for the removal of national sovereignty, rather than the political machinations that it actually represented. And so the rule of technocrats also began and has continued to expand into the present day.

(I have always believed that the unrelenting attacks upon our Royal Family, by Murdoch’s media, had sinister undertones. The strategies adopted for the integration of Europe all those years ago now bear this out.)

This thumb nail sketch of the history of the BIS raises many issues in today’s world. Whilst it is plausible to say that financial disciplines, over political, can provide the smooth running of finance, supporting international trade and growth that benefits us all, our actual experience of the work of this unelected and highly secret organisation has not been as promised.

At the heart of our problems is the human fallibility for power. Only this year the IMF and ECB demonstrated their powerful independence from political authority in the unnecessary bullyboy tactics they chose to adopt when Greece stood up to their ‘Austerity’ measures. Their unbridled power meant that they paid no heed for the distress their deliberate actions caused to the Greek people and the suicides that continue to this day.

‘Austerity’ is a lie and excuse to further reduce national sovereignty by plundering the national assets of countries. The TPP trade agreement also, is not about trade but the subjugation of democracy to corporate power and hence the paranoid secrecy until its launch on an unsuspecting public.

That our money is now being stolen from us, either as taxpayers or as bank customers, to pay for malpractice by those very banks; that cash is now under threat, to provide greater control over the monetary system and that we are being moved into a nightmare world of negative interest rates, is the outcome of the BIS’s development of the EU and its rule by technocrats.

Morality is nowhere to be found in this new world and will eventually bring it down. That the credibility of the EU and its dubious currency is coming under increasing pressure, as the people see their sovereignty taken away and democracy constantly undermined, is demonstrating that the financiers post war dream of a European federal state is unworkable.

The BIS itself is now coming under threat, as its strict conditions of secrecy, which have always been its true power, become outmoded in an increasingly transparent world. People are waking up and veils are being lifted.

The greater our awareness the greater the demand for change and the ending of this traditional abuse of the majority. Just imagine the re-balancing of current power if global trade unions and charities created such an organisation!

Until the next time

 

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

Global Leadership . . . Hmmmm!

As I watched the gathering of global leaders in Malta, standing for the obligatory photo op, I thought for a second I saw strings hanging down to their arms and legs. I looked again and they were gone, or had they been ‘photo shopped’ out . . . You decide!

As the financialisation of our Planet continues these corporate puppets gather to try and resolve yet another massive problem they have been instrumental in making. How can Europe possibly offer meaningful support to all these desperate immigrants when we are engulfed in chronic debt, falling production and vast youth unemployment?

It was Albert Einstein who observed that “The thinking that created the problem is quite incapable of solving it”, and how prophetic these words have become. We have horrendously serious problems to confront and deal with as a species, if we are to continue to live on this beautiful Planet, all of which have been caused by the policies of our leaders corporate masters.

If we look at the employment problems our young have to face, they can only escalate as we move into the future, creating a breeding ground for rebellion and anarchy. The significance of this, to my mind, is that every single one of us has to feel some sense of purpose in living this Life and work often provides the solution to that dilemma.

Youngsters today do not have this benefit, because robots and employers are reducing traditional workforces dramatically. They are getting away with it through contrived ‘austerity’ programmes which now rapidly losing credibility.

How will Society shape itself if there is little employment for people and that which is available is meaningless and insecure? How will homes be provided and family’s reared and how will we feed ourselves? Governments can’t help because their tax income will also drastically reduce.

And then we come to the broader picture. Climate change and global warming are a reality, in spite of the billions spent by the corporate sector on propaganda that argues against our interests and for theirs. With the benefit of modern communications we can actually see the ice caps melting as we look at them!

On the food front we know that water shortages are now occurring and can only get worse. The corporate solution to this Life threatening scenario is, with the help of ‘austerity’, to buy up as many national utilities as they can. Not for our benefit but as a source of guaranteed future profits. The fact that they are not employing people whose wages could then pay for this precious commodity and inevitably will die of thirst, is not a subject on anyone’s agenda.

Again with our environment, we are the only species to poison its own food by constantly dumping toxic waste into the oceans. To my mind it is the most childlike act of mindlessness, of all the present atrocities, because there is a mind-set that reasons the oceans are so vast they will absorb whatever we dump in them.

Evidence is now coming thick and fast of the nuclear pollution in our seas. Once again there is a puerile attitude by the culprits that ignores the natural state of the oceans and the fact that it is our largest source of food. Oceans have currents and these currents take what is dumped in the East, South, North, and West and move it around the world like a giant blender. (And TPP will deregulate food hygiene standards . . . Dear God!)

The curse of Society is political and corporate short terminism. Strategies are put in place that will see out the current political term and share prices are manipulated for the current accounting period. It is everywhere, from our news headlines to the collapsing state of our debt riddled financial systems and the shortages of jobs and food. Stock Markets scream for higher profits and share prices, pushing companies into dubious short term practices to maintain both. The latest being the VW emissions scandal.

We now have a lunatic environment where cheap money, printed out of thin air, is being taken on as debt, by big corporations, to buy up competitors in an effort to convince shareholders that ‘big’ is valuable. The present reality is that corporate sales are in constant decline and so share prices are being inflated by stardust, reaping terrible repercussions when the debt mountain cannot be repaid, which won’t be too long now.

The global financial system is run by unelected officials who are not accountable to governments, only their own board, as to how our money is produced and controlled. Debt, negative interest rates and the gradual disappearance of cash are now firmly on the agenda as they take us into uncharted waters!

And the masters and puppets currently keep it all in place with this financial control and a global media, whose propaganda constantly diverts our thinking away from these real problems with the latest political/celebrity ‘sensation’. It is here that the real blame lies.

Our media is the very essence of how we all assess and manage political and corporate activity. It is the means by which we regulate the powerful. History has shown how the powerful are always blinded by their own power – hence Magna Carta all those centuries ago.

As the media continue to play down the threats to our very existence we look to whistle-blowers and other responsible people to inform us. Will it take this extreme behaviour to bring the media back on course again, because we need something?

I understand that Rupert Murdoch is now dating Jerry Hall, Mick Jagger’s ex. Maybe our salvation will be found in her knocking some sense into him but I’m not holding my breath!

Until the next time

 

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