Economic Articles from 2017

Equifax is Not Your Friend: Should Everyone Freeze Their Account?

[Economic]
Equifax is Not Your Friend: Should Everyone Freeze Their Account?
by Mish Shedlock
Posted September 18, 2017

Equifax huge data breachThe Equifax security breach scandal keeps growing and growing. Their handling of the data breach that affected as many as 143 million accounts has been horrendous.

Executives dumped their shares before reporting the stolen data. Following the breach, their website did not function properly, people got signed up for programs they did not want or need, and customer service has been dismal all around.

Unless you intend to open up new credit cards, get a car loan, or home equity loan, etc, there is every reason to freeze your account and be done with it. Everyone else should monitor their accounts closely. More…

Trillions into the black hole of war while infrastructure continues to decay

[Economic]
Trillions into the black hole of war while infrastructure continues to decay
By Michael Payne
Posted September 17, 2017

war is a black hole sucking our economic vitalityThe U.S. invests only 2.4% of its gross domestic product on infrastructure; in Europe it’s 5% and in China it’s 9/%. Why the great difference? Because these other countries don’t waste theirs on war.

The more taxpayer dollars that are sucked into that black hole of war the more cracks appear in the foundation of America, its national infrastructure, at the center of almost everything that goes on in America; from the transportation of goods to people driving to work and a great deal in between.

This government’s ongoing obsession with war, together with the massive costs of the U.S, military empire are, in effect, contributing to this deterioration which is happening all across America; with the interstates, main highways, local roads, and the rail system. There are areas of substantial decay that we can’t really see, such as bridges, dams, waterways, sewer systems and the electrical grid. More…

Cities Against the Wall

[Community]
Cities Against the Wall
by Carlos Delclos
Posted September 16, 2017

offshoot of indignatos movementTwo years into its governing mandate, how is Spain’s municipalist movement fighting back against the impositions of global capital?

By now, the story is well-known in left-wing circles. Two years ago, a handful of civic platforms won municipal elections in most of Spain’s major cities, including Madrid, Barcelona, Zaragoza, Cádiz and Santiago, among others. Spearheaded by prominent figures from the local social movements, they joined Podemos and various left-wing parties in campaigns that promised nothing short of a democratic revolution.

In the aftermath of a brutal economic crash and an outbreak of corruption scandals, they would respond to the profound crisis of legitimacy affecting the Spanish state with a program of radical municipalism, channeling the bottom-up politics of the indignados movement that won hearts and minds in 2011. More…

When Wall Street Owns Main Street — Literally

[Economic]
When Wall Street Owns Main Street — Literally
By Rana Foroohar
Posted September 15, 2017

makers and takersUnfortunately, the economic climate and policy decisions taken since the 2008 crisis have resulted in a small group of rich investors— not American families—driving the real estate market and reaping most of the gains. Among them are private equity titans like Blackstone and high-wealth individuals who can pay cash upfront for a property.

If the markets are an ocean, private equity firms like Blackstone are the great white sharks that have perfected the use of debt, leverage, asset stripping, tax avoidance, and legal machinations to maximize profits for themselves at the expense of almost everyone else— their investors, their limited partners, their portfolio companies and the workers in them, and certainly society at large. More…

Public Banking Works

[Economic]
Public Banking Works
by Commonomics
Posted August 15, 2017

Public banks support communitiesLenders say they have money to lend, but that there are not enough credit worthy borrowers. Is this a valid argument?

This is a disingenuous argument, because it is the banks that choked the money supply in the first place, causing foreclosures, bankruptcies, joblessness, and bad credit. In late 2011, there was $3 trillion less money in circulation than before the crash three years earlier. Why do the banks choose to stop lending and create a money drought? Because this is how they obtain the fruits of our labor at fire sale prices.

It’s just at the notorious banker Andrew Mellon said, “During depressions, assets return to their rightful owners. The banks believe they are the rightful owners of our society’s assets because they own the money (bank notes that they pass off as sovereign currency). This is why we must take back control of the money creation process and replace the private central banks and create public banks that leverage the public’s money in the public interest. This is how to create liquidity on Main Street, restore jobs, and create a democratic economy. More…

Wall Street Is the Most Dangerous Example of Corporate Domination

[Economic]
Wall Street Is the Most Dangerous Example of Corporate Domination
By Pam Martens and Russ Martens
Posted September 11, 2017

Wall Street is the most dangerous form of corporate dominationAs if someone had quietly turned on a light bulb last month illuminating the corporate takeover of America, a series of articles from multiple outlets chronicled the demise of American democracy under the jackboot of the corporate state.

What is fascinating to us is that so few American journalists have adequately expanded on the seminal work of Senator Bernie Sanders to enlighten the public during last year’s presidential primary race to the fact that Wall Street is to concentrated and perverted corporate power what Hurricane Harvey is to a water main break. No other industry in America even comes close. More…

The Fed Needs Competition, Not Rules

[Economics]
The Fed Needs Competition, Not Rules
by Theo Bishop
Posted September 10, 2017

The Fed needs competition, not more rulesNot rules, but Competition…. an approach suggested by Nobel Prize-winning economist F.A. Hayek and championed by arch-Fed critic Rep. Ron Paul. While his “Audit the Fed” bill continues to come up for vote every few years, it’s his The Free Competition in Currency Act that would have the biggest impact on US monetary policy. The bill is simple, it eliminates legal tender laws and taxes on metal historically used as currency – including gold and silver. It could also be updated to include crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin.

The beauty of this approach is that it would painless. Instead of trying to figure out the larger ramifications of abolishing the Fed, or risk forcing it to choose a rule that won’t hold up in the future, it would simply allow consumers the option to use alternative currencies in their daily lives. For those concerned about the long-term consequences of the Fed’s monetary policy, it provides a parachute – without forcing the Fed to change its course. More…

New Eastern Energy Cartel Replacement To The Dead Petro-Dollar

[Economic]
New Eastern Energy Cartel Replacement To The Dead Petro-Dollar
By Jim Willie CB
Posted September 9, 2017

what is the petro dollarThe USDollar is integrally related to the global dominance that the United States has fostered for global benefit, then later distorted into a credit abuse dynamic but hardly for benefit, then finally abused beyond legitimate basis for global aggression and financial extortion. The dominance is unraveling within the Global Paradigm Shift. It is indeed late in the game for the shift, whereby no reversal to repair the USDollar is possible. The Eastern energy cartel has a firm foundation, leaving the West with no possible response.

The consequences are vast, extending to the USMilitary. Its reliance upon free oil is ending. The over-stretched military presence will repeat the end of the road that the British Military faced several decades ago. Both the British and the Americans have lost their cherished global reserve currency, and along with it, lost power and prestige. In recent months, the US has proved it has very few friends even among its list of allies. More…

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Quotable Sayings

Citizens United ruling effectively legalized bribery

Money in politics violates the essence of what made America a great country in its political system.

Now it’s just an oligarchy with unlimited political bribery being the essence of getting the nominations for President or being elected President. And the same thing applies to governors, and U.S. Senators and congress members.

So, now we’ve just seen a subversion of our political system as a payoff to major contributors, who want and expect, and sometimes get, favors for themselves after the election is over.

Former President Jimmy Carter

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