Archive for the ‘CRAZY’ Category

Hang Onto Your Wallets

Saturday, November 28th, 2015

Ellen Brown

CommUnity of Minds–Ellen Brown writes: Remember those old ads showing a senior couple lounging on a warm beach, captioned “Let your money work for you”? Or the scene in Mary Poppins where young Michael is being advised to put his tuppence in the bank, so that it can compound into “all manner of private enterprise,” including “bonds, chattels, dividends, shares, shipyards, amalgamations . . . ”?

That may still work if you’re a Wall Street banker, but if you’re an ordinary saver with your money in the bank, you may soon be paying the bank to hold your funds rather than the reverse.

Four European central banks – the European Central Bank, the Swiss National Bank, Sweden’s Riksbank, and Denmark’s Nationalbank – have now imposed negative interest rates on the reserves they hold for commercial banks; and discussion has turned to whether it’s time to pass those costs on to consumers. The Bank of Japan and the Federal Reserve are still at ZIRP (Zero Interest Rate Policy), but several Fed officials have also begun calling for NIRP (negative rates).

The stated justification for this move is to stimulate “demand” by forcing consumers to withdraw their money and go shopping with it. When an economy is struggling, it is standard practice for a central bank to cut interest rates, making saving less attractive. This is supposed to boost spending and kick-start an economic recovery.

That is the theory, but central banks have already pushed the prime rate to zero, and still their economies are languishing. To the uninitiated observer, that means the theory is wrong and needs to be scrapped. But not to our intrepid central bankers, who are now experimenting with pushing rates below zero.

Locking the Door to Bank Runs: the Cashless Society

The problem with imposing negative interest on savers, as explained in the UK Telegraph, is that “there’s a limit, what economists called the ‘zero lower bound’. Cut rates too deeply, and savers would end up facing negative returns. In that case, this could encourage people to take their savings out of the bank and hoard them in cash. This could slow, rather than boost, the economy.”

Again, to the ordinary observer, this would seem to signal that negative interest rates won’t work and the approach needs to be abandoned. But not to our undaunted central bankers, who have chosen instead to plug this hole in their leaky theory by moving to eliminate cash as an option. If your only choice is to keep your money in a digital account in a bank and spend it with a bank card or credit card or checks, negative interest can be imposed with impunity. This is already happening in Sweden, and other countries are close behind. As reported on Wolfstreet.com:

The War on Cash is advancing on all fronts. One region that has hogged the headlines with its war against physical currency is Scandinavia. Sweden became the first country to enlist its own citizens as largely willing guinea pigs in a dystopian economic experiment: negative interest rates in a cashless society. As Credit Suisse reports, no matter where you go or what you want to purchase, you will find a small ubiquitous sign saying “Vi hanterar ej kontanter” (“We don’t accept cash”) . . . .

(11/28/2015)

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The One World Company

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

truthout— Ellen Brown writes: Daniel Estulin, noted expert on the Bilderbergers, describes that secretive globalist group as “a medium of bringing together financial institutions which are the world’s most powerful and most predatory financial interests.” Writing in June 2011, he said:

Bilderberg isn’t a secret society….  It’s a meeting of people who represent a certain ideology….  Not OWG [One World Government] or NWO [New World Order] as too many people mistakenly believe. Rather, the ideology is of a ONE WORLD COMPANY LIMITED.

It seems the Bilderbergers are less interested in governing the world than in owning the world. The “world company” was a term first used at a Bilderberger meeting in Canada in 1968 by George Ball, US undersecretary of state for economic affairs and a managing director of banking giants Lehman Brothers and Kuhn Loeb. The world company was to be a new form of colonialism, in which global assets would be acquired by economic rather than military coercion. The company would extend across national boundaries, aggressively engaging in mergers and acquisitions until the assets of the world were subsumed under one privately owned corporation, with nation-states subservient to a private international central banking system. Estulin continues:

The idea behind each and every Bilderberg meeting is to create what they themselves call THE ARISTOCRACY OF PURPOSE between European and North American elites on the best way to manage the planet. In other words, the creation of a global network of giant cartels, more powerful than any nation on Earth, destined to control the necessities of life of the rest of humanity.

… This explains what George Ball … said back in 1968, at a Bilderberg meeting in Canada: “Where does one find a legitimate base for the power of corporate management to make decisions that can profoundly affect the economic life of nations to whose governments they have only limited responsibility?”

That base of power was found in the private, global banking system. Estulin goes on:

The problem with today’s system is that the world is run by monetary systems, not by national credit systems….  [Y]ou don’t want a monetary system to run the world. You want sovereign nation-states to have their own credit systems, which is the system of their currency….  [T]he possibility of productive, non-inflationary credit creation by the state, which is firmly stated in the US Constitution, was excluded by Maastricht [the Treaty of the European Union] as a method of determining economic and financial policy.

The world company acquires assets by preventing governments from issuing their own currencies and credit. Money is created instead by banks as loans at interest. The debts inexorably grow, since more money is always owed back than was created in the original loans. (For more on this, see here.) If currencies are not allowed to expand to meet increased costs and growth, the inevitable result is a wave of bankruptcies, foreclosures and sales of assets at fire sale prices. Sales to whom? To the “world company.” (08-22-11)

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Smash the Ceiling

Monday, August 1st, 2011

http://www.patentdocs.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2008/08/07/surowiecki_james.jpgThe New Yorker — James Surowiecki writes: In the past few years, the U.S. economy has been beset by the subprime meltdown, skyrocketing oil prices, the Eurozone debt crisis, and even the Tohoku earthquake. Now it’s staring at a new problem—a failure to raise the debt ceiling, which would almost certainly throw the economy back into recession. Unlike those other problems, however, this one would be wholly of our own making. If the economy suffers as a result, it’ll be what a soccer fan might call the biggest own goal in history.

The truth is that the United States doesn’t need, and shouldn’t have, a debt ceiling. Every other democratic country, with the exception of Denmark, does fine without one. There’s no debt limit in the Constitution. And, if Congress really wants to hold down government debt, it already has a way to do so that doesn’t risk economic chaos—namely, the annual budgeting process. The only reason we need to lift the debt ceiling, after all, is to pay for spending that Congress has already authorized. If the debt ceiling isn’t raised, we’ll face an absurd scenario in which Congress will have ordered the President to execute two laws that are flatly at odds with each other. If he obeys the debt ceiling, he cannot spend the money that Congress has told him to spend, which is why most government functions will be shut down. Yet if he spends the money as Congress has authorized him to he’ll end up violating the debt ceiling.

As it happens, the debt ceiling, which was adopted in 1917, did have a purpose once—it was a way for Congress to keep the President accountable. Congress used to exercise only loose control over the government budget, and the President was able to borrow money and spend money with little legislative oversight. But this hasn’t been the case since 1974; Congress now passes comprehensive budget resolutions that detail exactly how the government will tax and spend, and the Treasury Department borrows only the money that Congress allows it to. (It’s why TARP, for instance, required Congress to pass a law authorizing the Treasury to act.) This makes the debt ceiling an anachronism. These days, the debt limit actually makes the President less accountable to Congress, not more: if the ceiling isn’t raised, it’s President Obama who will be deciding which bills get paid and which don’t, with no say from Congress. …

We may nonetheless end up with a halfway sensible budget deal. But that would be the result of luck, not design. Instead of figuring out ways to raise the debt ceiling, we should simply go ahead and abolish it. The U.S. economy has plenty of real problems to deal with. We shouldn’t have to wrestle with ones we’ve created for ourselves.  (08/01/11)

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No Hurry, We have 9 days left!

Monday, July 25th, 2011

http://philoofalexandria.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/nc_national_debt_clock_110128_main.jpg?w=413&h=310RWWNL — Terry Wilken writes: Yes, we have plenty of time. No sense getting in any hurry. That might bring on a panic attack. We have plenty of time to come up with a plan. We are talking about a plan to solve the debt “crisis” so that we can pass a bill to raise the debt ceiling. Now that sure makes sense. We are spending to much money, so the answer is to pass a bill to allow us to spend more.

We have so much time on our hands that we can come up with numerous plans that we know will never come to a vote. Even William Jefferson Clinton has a plan. I will call him J to be consistent and for ease in writing the newsletter. The plan that J has arrived at would provide for a whole series of cuts to the government spending while raising the debt ceiling. The only caveat that he would have is that the cuts would not occur until the recession had come to an end. Now that sure makes sense. Since over spending got us into the recession, it only makes sense to wait until after the recession ends to cut back on the spending. I think I will take that plan for myself. That way I can overspend, and now can continue overspending until I am in better shape. That sure sounds like my kind of plan.

The way the government works is that they will change the way recessions are shown on the books, and we will be in a recession for the next 29 years. That way we can keep on doing what we have been for quite a while. They have changed the way inflation is calculated already. So what is the difference? Where did he get his economics training? From the same school that W and H went to? Oh yes, he is also a politician. I should have thought of that.

We now have several plans on the table. We have a baby plan, a Mommy plan, and a Daddy plan. Plus several others that shall remain nameless, This is a family newsletter after all.

We must tackle this problem now, or the world will come crumbling down. Have we not heard that before? This happened over two years ago, and now we have added a few more trillion dollars to our debt. The issues were not resolved. In fact, the problems may have gotten worse.  We waited until the last day to resolve the last problem. The bill that was passed was huge. We were even told that the bill had to be passed so that we would know what was in it. No congressman or senator that I saw on TV or read about in the paper had the time or patience to read the bill to see what it said.

Are we going to go through the same cycle again? I for one, certainly hope not. We need to cut spending. That is priority one. The spending needs to be cut now. Not in 10 or 20 years. Once we have cut the spending, we can get on to other issues.  We can start by not spending what is left in the stimulus bill; if there is anything left. Then we can stop earmarks. Then we can cut every item in the budget by a certain percentage, and leave it there until we recover. Am I dreaming? I am sorry, but I got rational there for a minute. I will take a break and try to recover. I need to rest for a week or two. Maybe this was just a bad dream. (o7/24/11)

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Let Me Pound the Table

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

http://bitcoinme.com/files/5513/0526/2891/bitcoin-225.pngRWWNL — Terry Wilken writes: We have come to the end of our options. It seems that our leaders will just stay with the status quo. That sure seems like a good option. Every idea is immediately turned down.  It just so happens that the dollar is losing its value.  What are we to do? I think that the answer is to change the currency to bitcoins.

Bitcoins have increased in value while all other currencies have gone down in value.

But then I realized if I were a real congress person, I would have to say NO! NO!

We cannot have bit coins as our new currency. Think of all the little people that we would offend. We cannot have that. A little bit of nothing. That sounds bizarre.  We cannot have that. It is too confusing. I would vote NO.

Remember when W started bailing out the auto industry, or at least GM and Chrysler? H took all the credit, but then who would question him. When it happened, I called the White House and asked for H. He was not available, but I told them that since I was now an investor in these auto industries, that I wanted to apply for my stock certificates. I explained that I was a taxpayer and stockholder, and that I thought I should have a say in how they did business in the future. They took my address and told me that they would send me an application if one became available. I still have not seen one yet.

If I had been asked about the taxpayer car business, I would have voted NO on this issue. It might have prevented this.

Not to worry, let’s bring back the suprime loans. If you thing subprime loans are not happening, then guess again. Remember when the housing market needed a kick from behind, so Congress said that the banks had to loan to everyone. Even if the borrowers had no money and bad credit. It created a banking crisis to end all banking crises. The government then bailed out the banks, but they forgot to bail out the homeowners.

Remember TARP? It was supposed to do away with all the toxic assets. The non-performing house mortgages. They just gave the banks money to strengthen their balance sheet. They did not fix anything. Now it is starting all over again. It is good business practice to loan to people that cannot afford to pay you back. Is not this true?

So let’s try subprime auto loans. That sounds like a great idea to me.

No what we need is more QE added to our moribund dollar. That will certainly get the economy moving. All we need is for the government to get busy voting for new stimulus spending or investing in new projects. They can ask the Fed to add more dollars to the mix. That will certainly fix everything. If you thought the Fed was going to quit QE, Then guess again. The Fed cannot stop QE. If they do, interest rates will go up. This will lower the value of their bonds, and not do a good thing for the banks either. If no one wants to buy what you are selling, even if it is money, it is hard to stay in business. Learn more here!

So if you elect me to congress, I promise to vote NO!

I will refuse to come up with any ideas of my own. I will just vote NO. It is better to just pound the table. If I do it right, I will not even hurt my hand. (06/07/11)

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Fracking Natural Gas and Earthquakes!

Monday, March 7th, 2011

http://www.treehugger.com/fracking-drawing.jpgHuffington Post — Two more small earthquakes have been recorded in central Arkansas where a recent spate of tremors has officials considering shutting down two gas-drilling wells. No injuries or damage are reported.

The U.S. Geological Survey recorded Thursday morning earthquakes with preliminary magnitudes of 3.7 and 3.2. Both quakes were just northeast of Greenbrier, which is about 35 miles north of Little Rock.

Two natural gas companies have agreed to temporarily suspend use of injection wells in central Arkansas where earthquakes keep occurring.

Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy and Clarita Operating of Little Rock told the Arkansas Oil and Gas Commission on Friday that they’ve stopped operation of the wells near Greenbrier and Guy pending the panel’s next regular meeting on March 29.

Clarita’s parent company is True Energy Services of Ada, Okla.

The commission says there is likely a link between the wells and the earthquakes. There have been more than 800 quakes in the area in the past six months and a magnitude 4.7 quake – the strongest in Arkansas in 35 years – hit there Sunday.

The high-pressure wells are used to dispose of waste water from natural gas drilling. (03/07/2011)

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Kicking the Can Down the Road

Monday, March 7th, 2011

BBC Environmental Science — The European Commission will not call for tougher targets on carbon emissions despite analysis showing that doing so would be cost-effective. On Tuesday the commission will unveil a road-map on climate and energy policy.

Its own analysis said that an EU target of a 25% cut by 2020 could easily be met, and would be economically better than the existing target of 20%. However, a senior diplomatic source has told BBC News that the final version will explicitly urge sticking at 20%. The news has disappointed climate campaigners who accused heavy industries of “scaremongering”.

The commission is also set to recommend that some of the 20% reduction can be achieved through buying emission credits from overseas, rather than entirely through cuts at home. …

Environmental groups have urged that in order to meet its “fair share” of global emissions cuts, and to re-invigorate the UN process, the EU should be contemplating 40%.

But energy commissioner Gunther Oettinger recently declared that going above 20% would lead to the “de-industrialisation” of Europe.

“Yet again it seems the scaremongering tactics of a handful of well connected industrial lobbyists have successfully castrated Europe’s climate ambitions,” said Baroness (Bryony) Worthington, director of the campaign organisation Sandbag. “The smokestack industries of Europe are wrong when they claim that the only way to meet our targets is through de-industrialisation; investing in new clean energy technologies will actually boost economic activity,” she told BBC News. “They also fail to mention that many of them are handsomely profiting from the sale of spare emissions permits which leave them largely untouched by requirements to reduce emissions.”  (03/07/2011)

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A Race to the top or a Race to the bottom.

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

RWWNL — Terence R. Wilken writes: First of all, I hope that all of you voted this month.  You may not feel any better, but you did something that is very important if any country is to survive. The Iraqi people gave us an example of that. Let us hope that their effort is rewarded. We can all learn from others. Now it is time to become the teacher. We need to train our government in the fundamental principals of economics.  I called H about a year ago to explain to him that it was important for any President to take a basic economics course. It appears that he did not listen.

I have learned to call our new President by his middle initial. President George W. Bush was originally called by his middle initial. At first I was offended that a sitting President would be addressed in such a manner. But then it grew on me. I now think of President Bush as W. To me it has become a term of endearment.  I am hoping that H will catch on for President Barrack H. Obama.

We have put a private Company in charge of our money supply, and brought in many experts to save us. We even brought in someone who gave us the bad medicine (high interest rates) to cure our illness once before. Paul Volker has changed his mind. He is going along with the  “go along to get along” folks and feed us the good medicine. The good medicine in their mind is more money. In order to pay back the debt that we have already taken on, we will have to buy that debt ourselves.

This will result in lower interest rates, and lower the value of the dollar.  Not to worry, our exports will increase and put everyone back to work. A lower dollar will make our goods cheap to foreign countries, and make their goods expensive to us. We can put our people to work and sell to them.  Are we happy?  I think we will be until we realize what we have done.  If we are successful, we will have changed places with China. They will buy our goods, and we will take on their lifestyle. They can then hound us to lower our prices, and force us to buy their debt. Is this a race to the top or to the bottom? I will let you make that choice. (11/14/10)

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Terrible Policy

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

CommUnity of Minds — Robert McHugh writes: Quantitative Easing will some day be looked back upon as we now look at healing the sick through bleeding back in the 1700s. It is terrible economic policy, in fact should be considered criminal activity. Criminal for many reasons, such as debasing the value of the Dollar, but more importantly because it will be the final nail that destroys our economy. Wall Street is the key beneficiary. Households (consumers) which account for 70 percent of GDP, and small businesses, which account for 70 percent of employment, will not benefit from this fraudulent activity by the Federal Reserve. Where on earth is it right for someone to print trillions of Dollars out of thin air and then buy legitimate legally binding debt instruments in exchange for this printed paper? Anyone else doing this would be arrested and thrown in jail, with the key tossed into the deep blue sea…

…let’s explore why it is a fraud on pretty much everyone except the sellers of the fixed income securities the Fed will be buying, primarily mega Wall Street firms, surrogates for the president’s Working Group (the Plunge Protection Team).

Bernanke suggested in his speech in Boston Friday on the subject of QE2, that he is justified in doing this to raise the inflation rate, which he believes is too low, and to increase employment. His economics are dead wrong. He believes it is perfectly appropriate to print trillions of dollars of U.S. Federal Reserve notes (Dollars) out of thin air, and then send this money from the Fed’s print shop across the invisible wall that separates the real economy from the non-economy (the Fed) to the lucky recipients of this cash. Here is the problem: This transfer of printed cash for securities in the market are normally known as open market operations, and the point of this exercise is to lower interest rates in the market to spur lending and filter cash through Wall Street intermediaries to banks to borrowers which would stimulate the economy and multiply the money supply in the market. However, short-term interest rates are already zero, and long-term interest rates are at historic lows. So QE2 will not reduce interest rates. Therefore it will not increase borrowing. Therefore it will not multiply the money supply or spur spending, ergo it will not improve GDP, will not help households or small businesses. The cash will simply move from the Fed to Wall Street where the mega banks can then leverage their investing and trading activities which will improve their short-term profits. There will be no trickle down benefits to households or small businesses. Without benefits to households or small businesses, there will be no improvement in spending (GDP) or employment.

What will result from QE2 is the devaluation of the U.S. Dollar as there will be too many Dollars floating around, in relation to hard assets such as precious metals, and foreign currencies. This reduces the purchasing power of Dollars, and reduces the value of cash in bank accounts. In other words, the consumer gets hurt. (11-14-10)

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It’s Just An Illusion!

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

http://media.theonion.com/images/articles/article/2912/Ben-Bernanke-R_jpg_600x1000_q85.jpgThe Onion — WASHINGTON—The U.S. economy ceased to function this week after unexpected existential remarks by Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke shocked Americans into realizing that money is, in fact, just a meaningless and intangible social construct.

What began as a routine report before the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday ended with Bernanke passionately disavowing the entire concept of currency, and negating in an instant the very foundation of the world’s largest economy.

“Though raising interest rates is unlikely at the moment, the Fed will of course act appropriately if we…if we…” said Bernanke, who then paused for a moment, looked down at his prepared statement, and shook his head in utter disbelief. “You know what? It doesn’t matter. None of this—this so-called ‘money’—really matters at all.”

“It’s just an illusion,” a wide-eyed Bernanke added as he removed bills from his wallet and slowly spread them out before him. “Just look at it: Meaningless pieces of paper with numbers printed on them. Worthless.”

According to witnesses, Finance Committee members sat in thunderstruck silence for several moments until Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) finally shouted out, “Oh my God, he’s right. It’s all a mirage. All of it—the money, our whole economy—it’s all a lie!”

Screams then filled the Senate Chamber as lawmakers and members of the press ran for the exits, leaving in their wake aisles littered with the remains of torn currency.

As news of the nation’s collectively held delusion spread, the economy ground to a halt, with dumbfounded citizens everywhere walking out on their jobs as they contemplated the little green drawings of buildings and dead white men they once used to measure their adequacy and importance as human beings.

At the New York Stock Exchange, Wednesday morning’s opening bell echoed across a silent floor as the few traders who arrived for work out of habit looked up blankly at the meaningless scrolling numbers on the flashing screens above.

“I’ve spent 25 years in this room yelling ‘Buy, buy! Sell, sell!’ and for what?” longtime trader Michael Palermo said. “All I’ve done is move arbitrary designations of wealth from one column to another, wasting my life chasing this unattainable hallucination of wealth.”

“What a cruel cosmic joke,” he added. “I’m going home to hug my daughter.”

Sources at the White House said President Obama was “still trying to get his head around all this” and was in seclusion with his coin collection, muttering “it’s just metal, it’s just metal” over and over again.

“The president will be making a statement very soon,” press secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters. “At the moment, though, his mind is just too blown to comment.”

A few U.S. banks have remained open, though most teller windows are unmanned due to a lack of interest in transactions involving mere scraps of paper or, worse, decimal points and computer data signifying mere scraps of paper. At a Bank of America branch in Spokane, WA, curious former customers wandered aimlessly through a large empty vault, while several would-be robbers of a Chase bank in Columbus, OH reportedly put their guns down and exited the building hand in hand with security guards, laughing over the inherent absurdity of the idea of $100 bills. (08/29/10)

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