Tag Archives: Troika

‘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

Brussels Bans Referendums!

Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent change inevitable.

— John F. Kennedy

Whilst this is not currently fact, what is now going on in Britain until 23rd June has so frightened Brussels and their financial lords and masters that, empowered by a vote to ‘Remain’, they will seek to make the banning of Referendums a reality.

This is not scaremongering but simply based on the evidence presented to us within this whole manipulative Referendum process. Stick with me for a minute and I will quickly make a case I think you will find it hard to refute.

All of the arguments and threats put so far, for remaining, have revolved around financial and business considerations and the damage ‘Exit’ could inflict upon trade.

Let’s be honest, have you seen or heard from your MEP, OR ANY MEP, (as our elected representatives), about the merits and demerits of the EU and their case for voting either way. No, neither have I and I am on between 2 and 300 newsletters!

If you accept for a moment that business and trade are the single most important issues surrounding this Referendum, as far as Brussels in concerned, then it is a forgone conclusion that if we vote to ‘Remain’, TTIP will immediately be implemented to support those interests.

We know from the recent leaks that within this odious trade agreement is the ability for corporations to sue governments if any of their legislation affects profits.

Ipso facto, if a Referendum is seen as being threatening to business interests, as we are told this one is, then Brussels will have no alternative, under the terms of the trade agreement, than to ban them. QED! (Don’t forget Greece where, because it was such a small player, the Troika simply ignored their Referendum on ‘Austerity’!)

Yes, it will be bound up in all sorts of political and diplomatic jargon like, “Greater unification of Europe cannot be achieved with issues that only reflect national interests against the general consensus of unity”. The bottom line however, will be to rid the system of any risk to the achievement of the current, corporate dominated, Neoliberal agenda to govern Europe.

What makes me even more certain of this course of action is how quiet Brussels has become over the TTIP leaks. No words of comfort, such as “In the light of public concern we will return to these negotiations at a later date”.

Everything has gone VERY quiet. In fact, Brussels seems to have shut down as we approach the 23rd June, with only good news about the cutting of phone tariffs (and God knows how much that will cost us in tax subsidies to the phone companies).

Talking of quiet, let’s go back to our MEP’s – the silence here is deafening! As I see it and correct me if I am alone here but this Referendum is about voting, one way or the other. We had a similar process earlier this year, with our local elections and you couldn’t move for elected and potential candidates vying for our vote.

According to The Telegraph each MEP costs three times as much as our Westminster MP’s, at a staggering price tag of £1.79 million . . . EACH YEAR! We pay for them to represent us and yet when it comes to getting something back for our money they are nowhere to be seen.

As our elected representatives, they are the (expensive) conduit between the people and the lawmakers in Brussels. Here again they remain silent, because they have no effective power to institute legislation, amend legislation or take legislation off the books. Forgive me but isn’t legislation the nuts and bolts of democracy and the effective management tool of the needs of Society?

As an integral part of the democratic process they are not only horrendously expensive but also totally ineffective. I would go further and call it a democratic ‘crime’, as various polls tell us between 12% and 13% of people are undecided because the lack sufficient information (that’s approximately 5 ½ million people), a shocking indictment of disservice by our MEP’s in their commitment to liaise, advise and inform.

Their silence, one can only assume, is because the ‘fix’ is in and they have been told to leave the arguments up to the big boys, like the IMF, Bank of England and US President, none of whom have been elected by any of us!

The best we can expect from our elected officials is a dubious leaflet from our even more dubious Prime Minister, (costing taxpayers £9 million) and 73 UK MEP’s, costing us a total of £130.67 million, who have been told to keep their mouths shut.

What the hell Boris and Gove are doing in the argument is beyond me. One is a ‘chancer’ and the other is a failed ‘reformer’. As far as Jeremy Corbyn is concerned, whilst being the most honest out of all of them in Westminster, his lack of enthusiasm for ‘Remain’ and a belief he can negotiate with Brussels does not inspire me.

Brussels are a sniff away from absolute power over Europe and once they have it dynamite won’t shift them.

If anything makes my blood boil it is this flagrant waste of our hard earned tax money on their pursuit of a Neoliberal Europe, where all that awaits us is debt, unemployment and little or no public services to support Society.

Instead the money we previously paid for those services will go into the corporate coffers of privatised services, as well as coming in handy to fund escalating sovereign debt, which lines the pockets of already obscenely wealthy bankers and which has cost them nothing to implement.

We are being taken for a ride of monumental proportions my friends and I weep at the abuse of the trust we have placed in a wholly corrupt system that is Brussels.

Our entitlement to fight for our rights is absolute, because we pay for it all in the first place and because we deserve so much better than our intended return to feudalism.

Until the next time.

 

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