The US government released a report about the recent near total financial collapse. Naturally, it focuses only on banking, not on all the factors leading us to destruction. It doesn’t examine the continuous festering sore which has afflicted the US for several generations now, that is, the trade deficit, nor does it address government spending and wars which is an immense credit-creating machine in itself. No, it focuses only on banking and even then, it is not focused on the true global monster, the hideous Derivatives Beast which is much bigger than anything financial, bar none. It is just staggeringly huge. Instead, the report suggests housing lending reforms! GAH. That is like worrying about a common cold while the patient is dying of cancer.
ΩΩFor the Derivatives Beast is pure cancer, its growth rate outstrips all other financial systems except for a while, the inflation of the Zimbabwe dollar. That was truly epic! But it was a dying currency of a very corrupt government and dying economic system. Ah, but what are we? I fear, not all that dissimilar.
First, one reason why our country isn’t very smart: An Epidemic Of Ignorance – Decline of the Empire
…are undergraduates really learning anything once they get there (college)?
For a large proportion of students, Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa’s answer to that question is a definitive no….According to their analysis of more than 2,300 undergraduates at twenty-four institutions, 45 percent of these students demonstrate no significant improvement in a range of skills—including critical thinking, complex reasoning, and writing—during their first two years of college. [The number is 36% after four years.]
ΩΩI like the graph here. Most time is spend socializing. A lot of this time is spent talking or texting on mobile stuff. And studying/going to classes is less than 20%? HAHAHA. Sounds about right for the average student! Complex reasoning is in particular short supply all around, in school and out. This is because wishful thinking and simple solutions to life’s difficult problems is much more fun than observing reality and figuring out how it actually operates. We want the Dream World, not Harsh Reality.
ΩΩProof that humans prefer this is obvious: we have religions. Imagine a religion called ‘Harsh Reality’. You are told, ‘Praying to something or someone won’t work at all.’ The person then complains, ‘What can I do, then?’ And the answer is, ‘Accept reality as it is. Work harder to change physical reality and if this is impossible, accept it just like all other living creatures accept reality.’ Ouch. I see few takers. We can always hope for the best or hope to escape a hazard or hope something doesn’t happen. But we can’t influence unnamed entities to change the future to suit our desires just because we know certain magic formulas.
ΩΩThere are many, many, many human magic formulas. All human societies are based on a succession of many interlocking magical formulas which try to explain or control chaos, defy natural physical forces and arrange social affairs so we don’t eat each other or run berserk. All social systems have to have restrictions of many sorts from top to bottom.
ΩΩThis is another iron rule of nature we can’t escape. Modern financial liberalism (that is, free trade, the floating fiat currency regime, modern banking, insurance and futures trades) has been based on this insane notion, we don’t need no rules, dudes! The Market will magically fix any errors, undo any bubbles, stop any messes via…crashing into a brick wall and dying a bloody death! Oops! Of course, the neo-liberals explained falsely that running out of control will not do that. It would gently stop doing insane things cooked up by crooked, disgusting, sex-starved bankers and financiers! Yup.
ΩΩGnomes would be in control of their own psyches, appetites and larceny impulses. No need for a ten commandments such as, ‘Thou shall not bribe Congress’ or ‘Thou shall not charge 35% interest rates on consumer loans’, etc. Well, free market freedom is very much like Mother Nature: bloody in tooth and claw and punctuated by epic extinction collapses. If people want to do this, I certainly can’t stop them. But the flip side of this ‘bloody in tooth and claw’ business is this: the free wheeling, no control neo-liberal system can and is crashing and will end in literal blood flowing in many streets!
ΩΩI am a regulator type: I want restraints, controls, barriers, restrictions and in general, civilization, not chaos. Chaos is death. This is the Libra business: balancing things is of extreme importance. Restraining one’s appetite, sex, finances, aggression is how civilizations survive. Unbalanced systems always collapse quite suddenly. Unrestrained violence (assassinations all the time as policy) leads to WWI, etc. We have to control things especially ourselves. And money is an interesting topic since it is totally human, utterly based only on keeping things balanced and under control in the government and thus, is an icon of ‘What Is Civilization?’
ΩΩOn to the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission Which Announces Details for Release of Final Report
- Report Briefing and Availability (EMBARGOED)
- On the morning of January 27, accredited members of the press will be allowed to view the Commission’s report prior to the start of the press conference. The report will be available in Washington and New York in printed form only. For admission, participants will need to have RSVP’d, received a confirmation email and must be willing to sign a confidentiality agreement agreeing to the embargo.
I like this: why ’embargo’ the information? Oh, so the Mainstream Media can get it first and then ask the commission the usual stupid questions! I have to wait to see it but according to the press, it isn’t going to be worth much: Financial Crisis Was Avoidable, Inquiry Concludes – NYTimes.com
- The report could reignite debate over the influence of Wall Street; it says regulators “lacked the political will” to scrutinize and hold accountable the institutions they were supposed to oversee. The financial industry spent $2.7 billion on lobbying from 1999 to 2008, while individuals and committees affiliated with it made more than $1 billion in campaign contributions.
- By one measure, for about every $40 in assets, the nation’s five largest investment banks had only $1 in capital to cover losses, meaning that a 3 percent drop in asset values could have wiped out the firm. The banks hid their excessive leverage using derivatives, off-balance-sheet entities and other devices, the report found. The speculative binge was abetted by a giant “shadow banking system” in which the banks relied heavily on short-term debt.
ΩΩAnd who, pray tell, is this dark, shadow banking system? HAHAHA. Oh, do we know it well! It is the beloved Derivatives Beast, the creature that made the top 5 investment banks ridiculously rich! And is it dead? NO WAY IN HELL…it lives! It had to suck in trillions of EU and US money to survive but thanks to government bribes from the gnomes, they got every penny and euro needed to repair the burst Derivatives Beast bubble.
ΩΩTo see how this monster survived even as entire countries now sink into total economic, social and political destruction, time to see the latest Office of the Comptroller of the Currency report:
ΩΩHere is the pie chart that shows us ‘investment grade’ deals and the ‘crap from hell’ deals. In 2010, nearly half of the deals are garbage. Compare this to the 2007 OCC report: http://www.occ.gov/topics/capital-markets/financial-markets/trading/derivatives/dq107.pdf
ΩΩWell, just three years ago, the investment grade deals were nearly three quarters of the deals! HAHAHA. Oops. A grand, roaring mistake! Now, let’s look at 2010’s notational pie graph:
..The entire derivatives market in 1972, when the US decided to kill off the gold standard and aggressively run all public systems in the red, 100% of the derivatives market was commodities. Note that today, it is the tiniest of slivers. It is only one half of one percent. Virtually all of this monster is now interest rate contracts. As the Fed struggles to keep our ship afloat via, like Japan, running cheap interest lending, everyone is understandably nervous about how this will inevitably end up hammering us with hyperinflation so everyone wants to play the interest rate game especially since the banking gnomes pretty much get to dictate interest rates via their control of both the central bank and the government.
ΩΩThis means, being monsters themselves with infinite appetites for sex, fun and money, they run things so they run to infinity as fast as possible. That is, infinity for them and DEPRESSION for the rest of us. Working wages have to go down. Jobs have to vanish. Cities burn. But so long as the profits of the Derivative Beast flows into the gullets of these few bankers, they are more than happy, they are ecstatic with joy.
ΩΩNow to compare two pie graphs which are done differently now so I can’t compare them exactly but we can get an idea how things are deteriorating, from 2007:
..What I am guessing here is, the interest rate stuff is swelling in size because everyone who sucked down much of the credit wealth of many nations to bail out themselves from their banking stupidity have to now protect themselves from the inevitable hyperinflation that will hammer certain nations especially the US when this rip off boomerangs. Now, on to the raw data of ‘what is money in these banks’ from 2010:
..Note the difference between today’s numbers and what was tracked back in 2007:
..There is this new column called ‘Risk-based CAPITAL.’ HAHAHA. Yup, Karl Marx, take a bow! You are finally somewhat vindicated! The US OCC has to track the very thing the bankers do not want tracked. They, by far, prefer a system whereby they can create loans with no capital. Money made out of thin air is the easiest thing on earth which is why so many reformers are praying to the evilest goddess, Infinity, to rescue them by creating infinite paper money by adding zeros to everything.
ΩΩThere are some other slight but significant changes between 2010 and 2007: compare the information at the bottom of the pre-crash and post-crash data lists we see above:
ΩΩThe total derivatives in 2010 is around $234 trillion in the top 25 banks all of whom had to be bailed out in 2008-2009. The capital base for this quarter gazillion fake funny money mountain is a piddling $807 billion. The derivative mountain is 300 times bigger than the capital molehill.
ΩΩLet’s compare this to just 10 years ago: the top 25 banks had $2.8 trillion in assets compared to $8 trillion in assets today and $6 trillion in 2007 whereas the Derivatives Beast was a mere $37 trillion in 2000, bloated up to $144 trillion in 2007 and has, astonishingly, grown to the present quarter gazillion. What interests me greatly is how the assets (debts paid by others to the bankers) grew three times in size whereas the Derivatives Beast based on this future money flow QUADRUPLED in size between 2000 and 2007! What the hell, we may ask?
ΩΩFrom 2000 t0 today, the Derivatives Beast has grown SIX TIMES bigger than the asset base differential. That is, in the beginning of this creature’s life on earth which as been an extremely short time frame, the rate of growth of the asset base has been significantly slower than the faster growth of the Derivatives Beast. It is truly more like a cancer than healthy growth. It’s independent growth despite a global banking/commerce/trade/housing collapse is most astonishing. Worse, we only know about the capital base of all this mess only in recent months due to the OCC not collecting and collating this hyper-important data.
ΩΩI keep harping on the fact that many people profoundly misunderstand the concept of capitalism and I lay this directly at the feet of anti-Marxists who have utterly ignored one of the most important books in economic history, the aptly named ‘Das KAPITAL’. That is, Marx thought it wasn’t trade or monetary philosophy that lay at the root of understanding economics but rather, capital and labor which is then active in the spheres of commerce, consumption, trade and industrial production.
ΩΩThe capital base for the Derivatives Beast is astonishingly small compared to the Creature itself. Note also the ‘exposure to rick based on CAPITAL’ in this OCC data sheet: for residential housing, it is 167%. And for ‘securities not in the trading account’ it is even worse, at 185%. This sounds like Japanese government calculations! Namely, hopelessly at risk of default or danger of collapse into penury.
ΩΩJapan’s Credit Rating Cut to AA- by S&P on Debt Load – but we shouldn’t worry ourselves! According to this story, Japan Downgraded. Big Deal – The Source – WSJ
- To begin with, a bit of context. Japan lost its AAA rating during the tech bust in 2001. What’s more, S&P has rated Japan AA- before, between 2002 and 2007, “so a return to this rating is not necessarily a disaster,” according to Julian Jessop, an economist at Capital Economics.
ΩΩThe US is following Japan down the same depression rabbit hole. So of course, most ‘experts’ ( I use irony here yet again) are not very worried about all of this: Why Uncle Sam’s AAA Credit Rating is Safe — For Now but…..Yield-Curve Anomaly Suggests, to Some, a U.S. Ratings Downgrade. Well, duh. So long as Asia buys much of our debts and holds much of our trade dollars in swollen FOREX accounts, we have no worries. But the day this ceases and they are all making some noise about this already, we are doomed. Of course, the people running us off the cliff want us to think, Asia will never do this.
ΩΩObviously, they will. Either they must or the Chinese finally put into action their beloved 50 Year Plan to bankrupt the US. When this happens depends on how much saber rattling the US does on China’s front doorstep or backdoor. Meanwhile, our NATO allies pledge to fight in Afghanistan and Pakistan, China’s backdoor neighbors, for the next zillion plus years even as the Greece Default With Ireland to Break Euro in Poll (Update2) – Bloomberg.com
- Most global investors predict at least one nation will leave the euro area within five years and that Greece and Ireland will default, sentiment that is intensifying pressure on policy makers to strengthen their response to the debt crisis.
ΩΩThe Church of Harsh Reality has to have a liturgy and some sort of requiem songs for economic stupidity. How about ’99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall’? Anyway, the inability to see the obvious is important if one wants to have wishes come true rather than responsible adult perception of reality.
ΩΩTo see how insane all of this is, all we have to do is go back to the first report issued by the OCC when Congressional reforms of banking were first used to track the Beast when it was still relatively a baby: http://www.occ.gov/topics/capital-markets/financial-markets/trading/derivatives/dq495.pdf
- The notional amount of derivatives in commercial bank portfolios decreased by $778 billion in the fourth quarter to $16.86 trillion. (This figure excludes spot foreign exchange contracts, which decreased by $299 billion to $305 billion as of December 31, 1995.) Although notional amounts have increased steadily over the last few years, this quarter’s slight decline is consistent with a pattern of stabilizing or declining notional amounts that have been present in previous fourth quarter numbers.
- During the fourth quarter, the notional amount of interest rate contracts fell by $234 billion, to $11.10 trillion. Foreign exchange contracts fell by $555 billion, to $5.39 trillion, while commodity and equity contracts grew by $12 billion, to $378 billion. The number of commercial banks holding derivatives decreased by 37 in the fourth quarter to 558.
- Off-balance sheet derivatives are concentrated in the largest banks. Nine (Note: today it is now only 5!!) commercial banks account for 94 percent of the total notional amount of derivatives in the banking system, with 9 percent accounted for by the top 25 banks (these figures include spot foreign exchange). For the years 1991 through 1994, the concentration of derivatives in the top nine banks was 86 percent, 91 percent, 91 percent, and 92 percent respectively.
- Approximately 66 percent of the notional amount of derivative positions were comprised of interest rate contracts with an additional 32 percent represented by foreign exchange contracts. Commodity and equity contracts were only 2 percent of the total notional amount. The composition of contract types remains relatively unchanged since 1991.
- Over-the-counter (OTC) and exchange-traded contracts comprised 86 percent and 14 percent, respectively, of the notional holdings as of fourth quarter, which is virtually the same as third quarter. OTC contracts tend to be more popular with banks and bank customers due to the flexibility in tailoring them to meet risk management needs. However, OTC contracts tend to be less liquid than exchange-traded contracts, which are standardized and fungible….
- The gross negative and gross positive fair values of derivatives portfolios show that banks are maintaining relatively balanced books; that is, the value of positions in which the bank has a gain is not significantly different from the value of those positions with a loss. In fact, the nine largest banks have $219.1 billion in positive fair values and $219.2 billion in negative fair values. These figures represent a slight decline from third quarter.
ΩΩWow, back then, the Derivatives Beast actually grew smaller whenever there was an economic contraction. Today, it simply grows and grows. Back then, the government dare not bail this out the way it is now bailed out without thought or debate. Back then, it was much, much, much smaller. Today, it dwarfs absolutely all financial, banking and government systems on earth. It is ridiculously huge. And utterly useless, nay, actively destructive.
ΩΩAnd I see no hint that anyone in the government wishes to kill it. Much less, control it. Even the sight of riots spreading across the planet as desperate humans go after the super-rich and super-corrupt, our own system sits tight, talking piously at Davos about democracy, growth and ending poverty…that is, their own poverty. Not the rest of humanity’s sufferings which is quite harsh and very, very real indeed.
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22 responses to “Congress Can’t Kill The Derivatives Beast”
Peter Orzag, writing in The Financial Times:
Most fundamentally it is difficult to see how the medium-term federal deficit can be reduced to sustainable levels without additional tax revenues from those earning less than $250,000 a year. And yet it is equally difficult to see the political system embracing that reality without being forced to do so by the bond market.
The feds cannot suddenly stop rigging the system for the benefit of their favored groups and supporters. A flesh-eating dinosaur can’t suddenly become a vegetarian.
The elite, the privileged, the parasites and the zombies are the feds’ base of power. Lose them and the government is out of business.
The markets are a fraud. Just look at the trillions spent and tell me where the money went. (Please, do not discuss TARP anymore. TARP was the smoke screen to distract you from the monetization of trillions in backdoor bailouts. TARP was nothing.) It went to big business and the banks to support the system and reinflate the bubble. That’s all. None of the debt that caused this mess has been eliminated, only added to. Corporate America is as lean and mean as ever, but with 19% unemployment, RE and CRE in a ditch, consumer debt still at or near record levels, US, state, city and municipal governments all buried in debt, SS, MC and the FDIC all are bankrupt, student loan issues that are so large (well over $300B I believe) they will never be repaid, have you bothered to look and see how underfunded your pension system is, 43 million on food stamps, food prices at all time highs, oil heading back to $100 and more and more and more – this crisis is actually far far WORSE at the human level than at the bottom in 2008. The TBTF banks are bankrupt. Bottom line. the US Government is bankrupt (and most likely your state and city governments are as well).
Hello Again. I love what you write about limits and think you are truly brilliant and incisive. But why do you keep bashing religion?
“Proof that humans prefer this is obvious: we have religions. Imagine a religion called ‘Harsh Reality’. You are told, ‘Praying to something or someone won’t work at all.’ The person then complains, ‘What can I do, then?’ And the answer is, ‘Accept reality as it is. Work harder to change physical reality and if this is impossible, accept it just like all other living creatures accept reality.’ Ouch. I see few takers. We can always hope for the best or hope to escape a hazard or hope something doesn’t happen. But we can’t influence unnamed entities to change the future to suit our desires just because we know certain magic formulas.”
Religion is not just wishful thinking. Although it may degenerate into that in certain cases, religion is the indispensable link between the biological (Might is Right, I’m the boss, there are no limits, etc.) to the social (acknowledging limits and rules for getting along in society, etc).
Re-read Robert Pirsig’s Lila for a fuller exposition.
Economics in America is an expression of the decomposition of the social and its replacement by the biological.
Hardly the time to bash religion!
ELAINE: There are many, many obvious examples of secular social rules and regulations that don’t need cosmic creatures meddling in human affairs.
Elaine is correct. The hope and faithy mollifies the masses….for awhile. Religions perpetuate a patriarchal system. Women and children are stratified into the lowest order. A woman allowed “near the glass ceiling” of the male dominated structure must have performed the miraculous virgin birth (who else could make this crap up). The antiquated sandal wearing, dress wearing, funny hat male religions all fear women’s power of life creation and to bleed 7 days every month and live. Name one man who can do that? Religions demonize women’s life-giving powers and subjugate them to “might makes right”.
The hopey, faithy, and belief credo of the Magic Show prevents the masses from demanding their fair share of the pie. The promise from the “guy in the clouds” of eternal “reward” in the afterlife is smoke and mirrors while the masses are robbed in broad daylight. What if people understood that this “life” is a one time event and not a dress rehersal for the “hereafter”? Ask yourself why is it that chosen men are the conduit (ear of god) to the almighty “guy in the clouds.” Best congame out there.
Age of Reason
“All national institutions of churches… appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.” Thomas Paine
“Each of those churches show certain books, which they call revelation, or the word of God….Each accuse the other of unbelief; and for my own part, I disbelieve them all.” Thomas Paine
Speaking of education, Jared Loughner was taking PRE-ALGEBRA at the community college at the sge of 22.
A few years ago I decide to brush up on my german at the U of A in Anchorage. I was absolutely astounded by the attitude of the students and how little was expected of them
by the teacher,( no grammar drills, no vocabulary memorization) compared to what I had experienced in the 70’s, which was quite demanding. After a few classes I quit in disgust, it wasn’t worth the half hour I spent driving there to spend 50 minutes with young people who had absolutely no desisre to put forth the effort necessary to actually learn german.
ELAINE: Dass ist ganz schrecklich!
Religion is at the very corrupt and diseased heart of our problems in the US. The whole shebang is generated by tribal groups fighting over religious territory in the middle east. The elites take advantage of the mania by profiting over the bloodshed.
Everyone would be a whole lot happier if they killed their god delusion.
Elaine, great commentary on the wizard’s derivatives beast. As John Adams wrote to Thomas Jefferson, “All the perplexities, confusion and distresses in America arise not from defects in the constitution or confederation, nor from want of honor or virtue, as much from downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit, and circulation.” The system works when the rules are adhered to. Unfortunately we are experiencing another lengthy period of overtly corrupt stewardship. To quote Janet Tavakoli, “fraud is the business model.” IMHO, government fears exposure of applying sunshine as the disinfectant due to the “unknowns.” For decades we have been caught in the devaluation of currency. The validity of currency has been separated from its’ primary function; labor compensation utilized as a universal bartering tool for trade, goods and services. The financiers, speculators; Wall Street-and the banks have uncoupled currency from its’ primary function. The interdependency of compensation and exchange has been dragged into the alley, beaten, robbed, and stabbed. The few financial obesities of delusional wealth are living in the alternate reality of all fun and no work as did Louis XIV and Marie Antoinette. We all know how that worked out! Wash, rinse, repeat.
to the PoLice:
dudes… the Banks Sit on the Fed board of Directors… Thereby the banks are giving themselves TRILLIONS in leverage that they loan TO THE CITIZENS OF THE US via the US Treasury that they can then use to collect a NET ASSET PRICE on our labor/property/knowlege/government
and the reason they have to do it… is they have been moving money THE SAME WAY using BULLSHIT CREDIT INSURANCE to create similar leverage on TRILLIONS worth of contracts to ‘protect market positions’ collecting a NET ASSET PRICE on our labor/property/knowledge/government for most of the last decade… AND WE BOT IT ALL VIA AIG/BEAR/FED/SEC
its money laundering via front companies… CRIME->BULLSHIT TRANSACTION->BULLSHIT PROFITS->BULLSHIT TAXES->MONEY IN THE BANK
COPS… remember the old line we are going to steal from future generations… NOT ANYMORE YOU BOZOS THINK ABOUT IT thx to ‘healthcare reform’ now your 14 year old kids are going to have to pay the corporate tax man FOR YOUR MISTAKES AND BAD JUDGEMENT
you grandparents didnt have to pay the healthcare insurance reform TAX but got the benefits, your parents didnt have to pay the healthcare insurance reform TAX but got the benefits, YOU didnt have to pay the healthcare insurance reform TAX but got the benefits
BUT YOUR KIDS ARENT THAT LUCKY ARE THEY
MAKE THEM PAY FOR YOUR RETIREMENT DAD, with social security having a surplus of 2.5 trillion i suggest you ask DC to pay up imean hell, its supposed to be good till 2035 rite… GUBMIT HAS YOUR MONEY BOSS
or you can change the laws again… remember YOUR KIDS ARE GOING TO LIVE FOREVER ITS SO UNFAIR PROBABLY DIE AT 150
bat shit crazy
Gun control in Congress: Lawmakers must shed their fear of NRA
sooooooooo…. if lawyers and police cant do their job of providing justice and accountability for ALL citizens
we should all just loose our jobs and constitutional rights imean… people are afraid! 90% of murder is committed by someone you know… and cops are always late to the armed burglaries and have to fill out ALL that PAPERWORK
we should be ashamed of ourselves
Princess Diana’s wedding dress continues to inspire U.S. fans
It’s displayed in all its glory — puffy sleeves and vast quantities of ivory fabric, with the 25-foot train laid out in full. A parasol made to match the dress, just in case of rain, sits in a glass case nearby.
should i jerk off
Since America’s modern social welfare democracy is not the product of enlightened rational, accumulated decision-making, America’s leaders will be unable to re-design it for the new conditions it faces. Instead, this social welfare democracy will face extinction – like dinosaurs and Neanderthal man…and all previous forms of government…all previous forms of paper money…and all previous monetary systems.
In other words, don’t expect the US government to reduce its deficits and bring its finances under control voluntarily. It will take a crisis…and maybe even a revolution.
Good links to the OCC derivative reports. The shadow banking system includes the 5 Trillion in SIV off the balance sheet that the big 5 US banks created. The scam was to fund these ENRON type SIVs with commercial paper, loans, etc, etc, while they invest for a few basis point spread in “AAA” securities. This was the same scheme being run in Europe for German bank subsidiaries in your “Pirate” Channel islands that blew up.
Now we all know the commercial paper market was less than 2 Trillion. So I have not yet found out where the Shadow Banking system SIVS were borrowing the rest of their big money. Are they borrowing from investment banks secured by borrowed securities? We all know the 8 Trillion dollar US equity market has a limited real net short position.
So one question is why do the investment banks borrow 3 Trillion in securities? There is a limit to poorly rated crap the investment bankers unload on the schools, hhospitals, pension plans and goverments that they “borrow” the securities from. Whatever we know they did NOT lend it someone to short 3 Trillion in the market. They borrowed the securities for other reasons.
ELAINE: What these derivatives are is double deals: everyone is hedging everyone else by creating the ILLUSION of huge heaps of POTENTIAL money someone has to pay out if some deal fails. When many deals fail at the same time, no one can pay off the losses and the system crashes. Right now, they avoided this full crash of the Derivatives Beast by using all the NATO nation’s accumulated national credit.
This is a one time thing. It can’t be done again, there is no more national credit to steal.
January 26, 2011 at 1:09 am
Tunisia hardly comes off as a US puppet in the wikileaks cable(s). The cable from Tunisia made it clear that America had limited influence and the Ambassador was astonished at the lavish way that the ruling class lived.
comeon please… dont hate the player hate the game? the system is till balls on? college grad power in action via jackrabbit?
police state bullshit marches on… hold out your hands
Perhaps a bit off-topic, but… from last week’s Economist, an interesting map of the US.
You’ve often heard that “if California was a country, its economy would be as large as (insert comparison country here)”? This map shows, for each state, which country its economy is as large as. New York State’s economy matches with Australia, Ohio’s with Belgium. Other states seem to match with countries which I didn’t think of as actually having economies. See, e.g., New Mexico.
If States Were Countries
ELAINE: Thanks for the link. Good map comparison. And yes, we have to bail out our own states, not Afghanistan’s fake leader, Egypt’s dictator or Israel’s wealthy Jewish population.
Elaine — I cannot quibble with your take on rreligion in general. Yes, organized rreligion — including Christianity — is a racket! A political one at that!
Pauline Christianity was adopted and set forth by a bureaucratic elite council with HUGE geo-political motivations. Pauline Christianity introduced the if you’re not with us, you’re against us doctrine of the “Messiah.”
I’ve come to believe that Saint (cough, cough) Paul (formerly Saul)infiltrated the Christian movement and sought to contain it, manage it for the then Powers that Be.
I do, however, dispute is Elaine’s take on the revolutionary message of Jesus. In its purest form – it is all about men living together peacefully and with dignity. And yes, there is karma baby!
Even the bible and its inclusion of the Jewish old ways — old Testament — is dilutive of Jesus’s revolutionary message of openness, truth, peace, love of all.
AND most of all I hate the term Judeo-Christian, this is accomodative term meant to wed Christians to ONLY jews religiously.
But Neocons and neolibs, zionists know that this is also a POLITICAL term meant for Christians only to use. As no self-respecting Jew would ever consider himself a judeo-christian. HA! Judeo-Christian!? what is that belief system exactly?
Governments don’t pay ever their debts. When things become unsustainable – wars and revolutions ensue. Or in the cause of mideast, rulers depart to friendlier lands with their personal (read looted) wealth, and countries fall and default.
Anyone who thinks Eygpt falling doesn’t change things, is whistling past the graveyard. Next up, Israel(US) response cause you know they have a plan.
BTW – Assange is running out of days in his January timeframe for releasing his “bombshell” on banks.) HAHA. Waiting for Godot. Time to acknowledge that Assange for the was faker he is. An illusion of hope, free information for those of us disaffected with oligarchy, status quo and corrupted gov’ts.
Jesus wasn’t executed because he was peaceful. He was arrested and executed only after he did a quite revolutionary and obvious act: he attacked the bankers PHYSICALLY. Violently.
Papering over this is puzzling. But then, I am amazed this entire thing was left in the Bible. Normally, white washing someone means leaving out details like the overturning of the banker’s tables. Even so, this event is NOT harped on by preachers or religious leaders.
Go visit any church before Easter and note how many talk about THAT story! Virtually none. Even though it is very much connected to the Easter story, nay, is the root cause of the crucifixion.
No. The Romans went after Jesus because the Jewish leaders felt threatened by the revolutionary speaker calling them out as hypocrites, and gaining too many followers. Better to squash the revolution before you lose your power. Scribes and Pharisees both yelled troublemaker to the Roman authorities, who had little choice but to obey their demands to keep the peace – status quo. If you believe the Bible. At least that’s my take.
I support LesserFools view, absolute power was very much with Church and priestcraft at the time. Loosing too many followers, they consolidated Roman and Christian beliefs into the roman Catholic Church. It was only after the bad rep and image that developed from the Crusades and Inquisition that the church learned to hide behind the bankers, not before.
Why would the Romans do that???? They were irritated by religious doctrine battles, they recently installed their crazy emperors as gods to the great disgust of many thinking people who thought this was stupid. The priests of Israel were outraged by all of this god stuff with the emperors who were insane, of course. But the revolution underway in the Holy Land back then was multi-level and Jesus was a very, very small figure in all of that.
His importance rose after he was executed for instigating a riot in Jerusalem (a violent riot, by the way) and the Romans hated riots and crushed them all (including insurrections like Spartacus!) quite brutally. By the way, hundreds of Spartacus followers were also crucified on the Appian Way during this time frame.
The stars that rose in the East in the Spring Equinox shifted from Ares to Pisces during the time of Jesus and he was transformed into a Piscean icon (thus, the first sign for Jesus was NOT a cross at all but a FISH, nay, a PAIR of fishes!) and the religions of the Mediterranean area was in flux (thus the birth of Islam) as a new replacement for the older, now dead cosmic religions was underway.
Emperor Constantine decided to go for the fish Jesus icon. Then had to settle religious dogma battles by enforcing a new Bible and killing anyone who disputed this.
Here is a geat article summarizing our current financial system. I like that it avoids all references to “conspiratorial” groups and organizations and just calls a spade a spade:
I believe this was first posted on Charles Hugh Smith’s website. I have never heard of the author, and I frequent the Silver Bear a lot. Very clear-sighted, and echoes Elaine’s complaint that savers and producers cannot make a living anymore.
Well I was just planning on going into the mirror and talking to him about the cost of living since 2008 the rents have gone up 60% and income has gone up at all and I’m not able to find a place to live that I can afford and I was going to just bluntly say you need to regulate the cost of living raises or you need to match it in what we make. unbeknownst to me the true fundamental cause.
Thank you for such clear writing I am formerly of normal person suddenly I’m taking calculus And Gettin It so now I have a foundation for being able to process things like this I am one of those college students but I’m done with class and I’m sitting in the van copied everything down and understand it and get it to as many people as we can understand these things. Should I be approaching the mayor or should I be seeking out congressman.
Anyway thank you from sunny Oceanside California.
Ms. Ronnie Cea
I am the author of this news site. I appreciate you coming here and talking with us. I went to school at Berkeley for a while and lived in my panel truck back in 1970. It was actually fun for me back then, I was very young.
You realize, if you are in school, you are an ‘asset’ to the derivatives dealers. Since you are taking on debt with no way of escaping it, you will become a debt slave for the banking sector, a trillion dollars is now owed by students who are trapped.
Escaping this trap won’t be easy and I feel very badly about this. During this election, Sanders said he would do something but he was shut down by Clinton who is working for the Wall Street bankers. She wants to fool students so they go deeper into debt and then get shafted by her buddies, the top bankers.
But then, this is being foisted on us all by the media bosses who back the gangs doing this to everyone and you are a victim. I can see from your writing that English is a foreign language to you.
My advice is, flee the US when you finish school or you will regret it.