Life for Rent
by Don Findlay
Posted March 27, 2015
We are born, in this world, into a game that’s already started. We arrive late….. really late, for the game is nearly completed. As in Monopoly, all of the properties are owned and everywhere we land, rents must be paid. We have no choice… these are the rules of the game. The game is not an option. There is no other way to survive. Thenland and resources necessary for alternatives are gone and laws protect us from hunting, fishing, and cultivating sustaoable socities. To survive we need money and money is the key to winning to winning the game.
All talk of freedom is absurd. We are only “free” to get into their game. The rules are set, quitting is illegal, so get started “earning a living”. We have no inherent human right to be alive. We must earn our right to exist by submitting to the authority of those in charge of the game. More…
Debt-damned economics: either learn monetary reform, or kiss your assets goodbye
by Carl Herman
Posted March 24, 2015
The American Monetary Institute has a proposal called the American Monetary Act (49) to do this. This proposal was also endorsed by America’s best-known economist, Milton Friedman, as the single most important action possible for US economic improvement (see footnote 14 on this monetary reform proposal ).
The benefits are astounding: the American public would no longer pay over $400 billion every year for national debt interest payments (because almost 50% of the debt is intra-governmental transfers, this is a savings of over $200 billion/year). If lending is run at a non-profit rate or at nominal interest returned to the American public (for infrastructure, schools, fire and police protection, etc.) rather than profiting the banks, the savings to the US public is conservatively $2 trillion (51). If the US Federal government increased the money supply by 3% a year to keep up with population increase and economic growth, we could spend an additional $500 billion yearly into public programs, or refund it as a public dividend (52). More…
Too many people think that the current monetary system is the only way because that is all they have known. This proposal has the potential to transform our society.
The New “Water Barons”: Wall Street Mega-Banks are Buying up the World’s Water
By Jo-Shing Yang
Posted March 23, 2015
A disturbing trend in the water sector is accelerating worldwide. The new “water barons” — the Wall Street banks and elitist multibillionaires — are buying up water all over the world at unprecedented pace.
Familiar mega-banks and investing powerhouses such as Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, UBS, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Macquarie Bank, Barclays Bank, the Blackstone Group, Allianz, and HSBC Bank, among others, are consolidating their control over water. Wealthy tycoons such as T. Boone Pickens, former President George H.W. Bush and his family, Hong Kong’s Li Ka-shing, Philippines’ Manuel V. Pangilinan and other Filipino billionaires, and others are also buying thousands of acres of land with aquifers, lakes, water rights, water utilities, and shares in water engineering and technology companies all over the world.
The second disturbing trend is that while the new water barons are buying up water all over the world, governments are moving fast to limit citizens’ ability to become water self-sufficient (as evidenced by the well-publicized Gary Harrington’s case in Oregon, in which the state criminalized the collection of rainwater in three ponds located on his private land, by convicting him on nine counts and sentencing him for 30 days in jail). More…
The “Official” Unemployment Rate Has Become Meaningless – Here’s Why
by Michael Snyder
Posted March 18, 2015
Earlier this month we learned that the official “unemployment rate” has [supposedly] fallen to 5.5%. Since an unemployment rate of 5% is considered to be “full employment” by many economists, many in the mainstream media took this as a sign that the U.S. economy has almost fully “recovered” since the last recession. In fact, according to the Wall Street Journal, some Federal Reserve officials believe that “the U.S. economy is already at full employment”.
It is my contention that the official “unemployment rate” has become so politicized and so manipulated that it is essentially meaningless at this point.Since February 2008, the size of the U.S. population has grown by 16.8 million people, but the number of full-time jobs has actually decreased by 140,000. More…
The ECB’s Noose Around Greece: How Central Banks Harness Governments
by Ellen Brown
Posted March 13, 2015
The noose around Greece’s neck is this: the European Central Bank (ECB) will not accept Greek bonds as collateral for the central bank liquidity all banks need, until the new Syriza government accepts the very stringent austerity program imposed by the troika (the EU Commission, ECB and IMF). That means selling off public assets (including ports, airports, electric and petroleum companies), slashing salaries and pensions, drastically increasing taxes and dismantling social services, while creating special funds to save the banking system.
These are the mafia-like extortion tactics by which entire economies are yoked into paying off debts to foreign banks – debts that must be paid with the labor, assets and patrimony of people who had nothing to do with incurring them. National central banks are no longer tools of governments for the benefit of the people. Governments have become tools of a global central banking system serving the interests of giant international financial institutions. These “too big to fail” behemoths must be saved at the expense of local banks, their depositors, and local economies generally. More…
Former SEC Director Admits The Truth: The Market Is Rigged
by Tyler Durden
Posted March 12, 2015
The current market ecosystem is not sustainable, and significant changes are coming one way or another,” Ramsay said in a speech delivered at a New York technology conference in September. Ramsay said his opinions grew more critical in recent years as he watched the market fragment into 11 public exchanges and more than 40 less-regulated private venues such as dark pools.
Trading became more complex and prone to technological malfunctions in the face of rules that were supposed to boost competition and create new choices for investors, he said.
He outlined how the market lost its way: conflicts of interest among brokers, a two-tier system favoring the speediest and a general sense that today’s rules have been crafted to the benefit of insiders.
Is “crafted for the benefit of insiders” not the very definition of a rigged game? More…
Turning the European Debt Myth Upside-Down
by Conn Hallinan
Posted March 12, 2015
Myths are dangerous because they rely more on cultural memory and prejudice than facts.
And behind the current crisis between Greece and the European Union (EU) lies a fable that bears little relationship to why Athens and a number of other countries in the 28-member organization find themselves in deep distress.The tale is a variation of Aesop’s allegory of the industrious ant and the lazy, fun-loving grasshopper. The “northern countries” – especially Germany, the Netherlands, Britain, and Finland – play the role of the ant, and Greece, Spain, Portugal, and Ireland the part of the grasshopper.
The ants are sober and virtuous, while the grasshoppers are spendthrift, corrupt lay-abouts who have spent themselves into trouble and now must pay the piper. The problem is that this myth bears almost no relationship to the actual roots of the crisis or what the solutions might be. And it perpetuates a fable that the debt is the fault of individual countries rather than a serious crisis at the very heart of the EU. More…
Financial Collapse Leads To War
by Dmitry Orlov
Posted March 6, 2015
The US has surrendered its sovereignty to a clique of financial oligarchs. Having nobody at all to answer to, this American (and to some extent international) oligarchy has been ruining the financial condition of the country, running up staggering levels of debt, destroying savings and retirements, debasing the currency and so on. The inevitable end-game is that the Federal Reserve (along with the central banks of other “developed economies”) will end up buying up all the sovereign debt issuance with money they print for that purpose, and in the end this inevitably leads to hyperinflation and national bankruptcy. A very special set of conditions has prevented these two events from taking place thus far, but that doesn’t mean that they won’t, because that’s what always happens, sooner or later.
Now, let’s suppose a financial oligarchy has seized control of the country, and, since it can’t control its own appetites, is running it into the ground. Then it would make sense for it to have some sort of back-up plan for when the whole financial house of cards falls apart. Ideally, this plan would effectively put down any chance of revolt of the downtrodden masses, and allow the oligarchy to maintain security and hold onto its wealth. Peacetime is fine for as long as it can placate the populace with bread and circuses, but when a financial calamity causes the economy to crater and bread and circuses turn scarce, a handy fallback is war. More…
The Fed’s History of Assassination
by Shah Gilani
Posted March 1, 2015
Shah Gilani writes: The Federal Reserve System has a very dark history.
I’m talking about a history of murder.Maybe you didn’t know, but there’s a theory that the Fed ordered John F. Kennedy’s assassination.
Today, I’ll share with you the facts behind that theory. And then I’ll show you the facts that prove the Fed is guilty of even more murders. More…
Swimming with the Sharks: Goldman Sachs, School Districts, and Capital Appreciation Bonds
by Ellen Brown
Posted February 23, 2015
Remember when Goldman Sachs – dubbed by Matt Taibbi the Vampire Squid – sold derivatives to Greece so the government could conceal its debt, then bet against that debt, driving it up? It seems that the ubiquitous investment bank has also put the squeeze on California and its school districts. Not that Goldman was alone in this; but the unscrupulous practices of the bank once called the undisputed king of the municipal bond business epitomize the culture of greed that has ensnared students and future generations in unrepayable debt.
In 2008, after collecting millions of dollars in fees to help California sell its bonds, Goldman urged its bigger clients to place investment bets against those bonds, in order to profit from a financial crisis that was sparked in the first place by irresponsible Wall Street speculation. Alarmed California officials warned that these short sales would jeopardize the state’s bond rating and drive up interest rates. But that result also served Goldman, which had sold credit default swaps on the bonds, since the price of the swaps rose along with the risk of default. More…