Austerity . . . That Hidden Charge!

Austerity is not a phenomenon of the 21st century. The robust empires of Mesopotamia, Rome, Bourbon and Britain failed under crushing debt that drowned economic output, destroying a healthy financial environment. If we go beyond the surface we can better understand the endemic cancer within debt that guarantees this constant failure.

97% of the world’s currencies are provided by private banks who charge us for using their money, rather than governments doing the job for free. They argue that it is ‘unhealthy’ for politicians to be involved in the supply of money and therefore the job of the banks.

There is however an equally ‘unhealthy’ aspect to the present arrangement, as banks charge compound interest on the money we use. This has been a bone of moral contention for centuries as religion decries the immorality of interest earning interest because compound interest quickly escalates debt.

If we borrow £20,000 at just 5% and compound it monthly, the amount repaid over 10 years would be £32,940.18 and a staggering £54,252.80 after 20 years! (Source

When you consider the trillions of dollars printed into the global system since 2008 is it any wonder we are now suffocating in debt! Currently this money is at low, or zero interest but the Federal Reserve are now talking about raising interest rates. Given these astronomical amounts the effects of compound interest on the economies of many countries will be crippling.

Here we get to the source of the immense power the monopoly of global banking has achieved. With debt comes obligation, guaranteeing them the ability to impose whatever terms they wish, of which compound interest is just one facet. ‘Austerity’ is another, as banks argue that when a borrower gets into difficulties they must “cut their coat”, irrespective of the banks contribution to those difficulties.

Armed with this logic they insist that borrowers forgo the expense of ‘non-essentials’, to meet the interest repayments on the money owed. Here lies the growing antagonism between lender and borrower, as it is banks and governments who define what constitutes ‘non-essentials’.

Government’s sign up to ‘Austerity’ in order to get the money, knowing full well that banks have little time for the social needs of Society. Whether it is healthcare, education, social benefits, water and energy supplies or state owned assets, they can be drastically reduced or sold off (at seriously discounted prices) as a condition of the debt agreement.

The most public example of ‘Austerity’, as a hidden charge within sovereign debt, was when the UK gold supply was disposed of by Gordon Brown between 1999 and 2002. This was the result of pressure placed upon him by Goldman Sachs, who were significantly short on gold and in danger of going bust. Brown was obligated to come their aid, (because of our indebtedness), which he did spectacularly by firstly advertising his intention to sell our total gold holding and secondly, offering it for sale by auction.

These were two unprecedented actions, deliberately calculated to drive down the gold price by making the markets aware of government intention to sell. The net result was that our gold was sold at between $256 and $296 an ounce, subsequently soaring to an astounding $1,615 by 2012.

Goldman Sachs were saved by the sale of one of our state owned assets at a derisory price, providing a nice little earner to boot! Added to which an unsuspecting public were totally unaware of a subterfuge that just six years later would be perpetrated upon them again in an even more abusive fashion by ALL the banks!

This hidden charge of ‘Austerity’ is an ongoing abuse, as demonstrated only a couple of weeks ago, when our government publicly announced its intention to sell its stake in RBS at a loss, tipping off the markets yet again to bring down the price, reportedly, with the full approval of Rothschild’s.

As both governments and bankers continue to conspire to keep the reality of their dealings out of the public eye it is becoming increasingly apparent that the true cost of private banks supplying our money is now becoming prohibitive. We are not only expected to pay compound interest for its use but also hand over our national assets and quality of Life as well, in the name of ‘Austerity’.

The severe treatment being forced upon the Greek people now is reminiscent of the loss of dignity suffered by the German people, forced into unconditional surrender at the end of WWI. This barbaric treatment resulted in a horrendous backlash, meted out to an unsuspecting nation by a maniac whose power came from the robbed dignity of the people.

To ensure history does not repeat itself this time, is it not right for all of us to stand with the Greek people and shout at our governments “ENOUGH. FOLLOW THE GREEK LEAD” . . . that we may once again live our lives with dignity.

Until the next time


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