The Unsustainability of Modern Capitalism | Information Clearing House

Daily Bell: Please treat this interview as if no one knew about you or your bestselling books. Give us some background on where you grew up and how you entered the CIA.

John Perkins: I grew up in New Hampshire and went to business school in Boston. At that time, I was approached by the National Security Agency (NSA), not the CIA, for a series of very sensitive tests including lie detector and personality test. They concluded I would make a good economic hit man, which is essentially a con artist with an economic background. They also said they found several weaknesses in my character that maybe they could use as hooks that would bring me into their game. Primarily, money, sex and power. Being that I was a young man, I was seduced by all of them.

Daily Bell: You were chief economist at a major international consulting firm; how did you gain that position?

John Perkins: After the NSA recruited me, I joined the Peace Corps. When I came out of the Peace Corps, Charles P. Maine hired me. It was a Boston consulting firm and the Sr. VP who hired me had very close ties to the NSA and the intelligence network of the United States in general. What I came to realize was it was all part of the scheme to turn me into an economic hit man. The first economic hit man, guys like Kermit Roosevelt, who overthrew the democratically elected President of Iran actually worked for the CIA.

But the weakness in that system was that if guys like Kermit Roosevelt had been discovered, the US government would have been in deep trouble. So very soon after that experience, they started to use private consultants, instead of actual government employees to do this work. Companies like Charles T. Main were brought in with legitimate contracts, working for the state department or the World Bank or the treasury department or USAID or other organizations and within these organizations were guys like me who did this special field of work.

Daily Bell: Interesting. You advised the World Bank, United Nations, IMF, U.S. Treasury Department, Fortune 500 corporations, and countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. What is your opinion of the World Bank?

John Perkins: The World Bank is a tool of economic hit men, there is no question about it. It’s the tool of big corporations, the IMF and most of what we call intelligence agencies of the United States, CIA and NSA. Essentially the job of all these organizations is to help what used to be just US businesses – now we call them multi-nationals – get themselves established around the world in positions where they can exploit the world’s resources, natural resources and human resources. All of these organizations are basically tools of what they call the corporatocracy. The men and a few women who run the biggest and most powerful corporations also run most of the government. Economic hit men help channel the resources of organizations like the World Bank and the IMF, the NSA and the CIA to support the larger agenda.

Daily Bell: The IMF?

John Perkins: It’s a servant of the corporatocracy, of economic hit men. One of my jobs as an economic hit man was to identify countries that had resources like oil and arrange huge loans for those countries from the World Bank and sister organizations. But the money would never go to the actual country; instead it would go to our own corporations to build infrastructure projects in that country like power plants and industrial parks; things that would benefit a few very wealthy families.

So then the people of the country would be left holding this huge debt that they couldn’t repay. We would come back and say, “well, since you can’t repay your debt, you have to restructure your loan.” That’s when the IMF comes in. So the World Bank makes the original loan and IMF shows up and says, “We’ll help you restructure your loan, but in order to do that you have to meet certain conditionalities. You have to sell your oil or whatever the coveted resource is at a cheap price, to the oil companies without restrictions.” Or they would suggest the country sell electric utilities, water and sewage, maybe even your schools and jails to private multi-national corporations. Or maybe allow military bases to be built; these sorts of things.

Daily Bell: The United Nations?

John Perkins: I think the United Nations has an important function that it should be performing. We need an organization like that in the world today. Unfortunately, the United Nations has been rendered basically impotent. The United Nations was very opposed to us going into Iraq, but the Bush administration totally ignored that and went in anyway. I think it’s very unfortunate that the United Nations has been emasculated by the United States.

Daily Bell: What do you think of the Bank for International Settlements? Is it true that it has worldwide and absolute immunity? Why does a central bank for central banks need sovereign immunity? How is that even enforceable?

John Perkins: It’s enforceable because that’s the way the laws are written in all the various countries that we inhabit. As long as the people who are running the banks and corporations also control politicians, which today they do around the world, then they get to write the laws. It’s interesting that during a lot of my lifetime in the United States, for example, our laws were written by elected officials, but today that is not the case. Today in the United States lobbyists write the laws; the elected officials are essentially owned by big corporations. That’s not true on all issues, but it’s true on the big issues that affect big corporations. We’ve reached a new geopolitical reality that we have never known before. This is a new situation. Read more…

The Declining Dollar Chart | King World News

With gold higher and silver up almost $1.30, King World News today interviewed James Turk out of Spain.  Turk had this rather frightening warning about the dollar, “The dollar right now is hanging on the precipice.  If we break below 77 on the dollar index, look out below.  I don’t think people really appreciate how scary the dollar chart is here, or how ominous the implications really are.  There’s no predicting how far the dollar could plunge if confidence breaks.” Read more…

Biggest Scam in World History Exposed | Conscious Media Network

The greatest scam in history has been exposed — and has largely been ignored by the media. In fact, it’s still going on. The specifics of a secret taxpayer funded “backdoor bailout” organized by unelected bankers have been revealed. The data release revealed “emergency lending programs” that doled out $12.3 trillion in taxpayer money ($16 trillion according to Dr. Ron Paul) — and Congress didn’t know any of the details. Read more…

The McCoy Case Analyzed – MERS Smackdown! | Q-Law Blog

In a relatively uncomplicated adversary proceeding in Oregon’s bankruptcy court, Judge Alley hit the nail squarely on the head: If lenders in Oregon want to foreclose people out of their homes, they must follow ORS 86.735(1). Or in the words of one Oregon title counsel, Judge Alley’s decision means that “…all assignments behind a MERS trust deed must be recorded for a non-judicial foreclosure. In McCoy, it appeared there were unrecorded assignments by the original lender identified in the promissory note. A “beneficiary” in Oregon is defined as the entity or person identified in the trust deed as the one for whose benefit the trust deed is given (or their successor in interest) – that was not MERS, but rather the original lender making the actual loan to the borrower. Read more…

HR 1207 – Audit the Federal Reserve

Editor’s Note: Has this video has been removed due to term of service violation OR censored?

The Federal Reserve is the chief culprit behind the economic crisis. Its unchecked power to create endless amounts of money out of thin air brought us the boom and bust cycle and causes one financial bubble after another. Since the Fed’s creation in 1913 the dollar has lost more than 96% of its value, and by recklessly inflating the money supply the Fed continues to distort interest rates and intentionally erodes the value of the dollar.

For the past 30 years, Congressman Ron Paul has worked tirelessly to bring much-needed transparency and accountability to the secretive bank. And in 2009 his unfaltering dedication showed astonishing results: HR 1207, the bill to audit the Federal Reserve, swept the country and made the central bankers shudder at their desks. The bill passed as an amendment both in the House Financial Services Committee and in the House itself.

But the usurpers of America’s future didn’t take it lying down. They weren’t about to allow their secrets to be exposed and their magic money machine to be put under close scrutiny. They worked frantically behind the scenes to quietly derail all efforts to open up the Federal Reserve to an independent audit.

A handful of Fed-loving U.S. senators led by Chris Dodd rewrote the Senate version of the Financial Reform Bill to strip out Ron Paul’s Audit the Fed amendment and actually expand the Fed’s power over banks, lending and money. As Alan Grayson pointed out here, and Ron Paul commented on here, the Dodd bill completely eliminated legislation to audit the Federal Reserve, which already passed in the House.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) introduced an amendment on the floor effectively adding the Grayson-Paul language to the Senate bill, but later changed his amendment under pressure by the Federal Reserve and the Obama administration. The altered Sanders amendment passed the Senate on May 11, 2010 by a unanimous 96-0 vote.

Sen. Vitter reintroduced an amendment with the original Audit the Fed language. The Senate rejected the amendment on May 11, 2010 by a 37-62 vote.

The House and Senate went to the conference committee which attempted to reconcile the differences between the two bills (and their amendments). Unfortunately, Ron Paul’s tough language ended up not being included in the final bill.

On June 30, 2010, the GOP introduced Ron Paul’s Audit the Fed bill as a motion to recommit, which was the last chance to alter the financial regulation bill. Audit the Fed failed by a vote of 229-198. All Republicans voted in favor of the measure with 23 Democrats crossing the aisle to vote with Republicans. 114 co-sponsors of HR 1207, all Democrats, jumped ship and voted against Audit the Fed. Read more…

Source: Ron Paul

Wall Street’s 10 Greatest Lies of 2009 | AlterNet

By Nomi Prins

On December 13, President Obama declared that he was not elected to help the “fat cats.” But the cats got another version of that memo. A day later, 10 of them were supposed to partake in some White House face-time to talk about their responsibilities to the rest of the country, but only seven could make it. No-shows for the “very serious discussion” — due to inclement New York weather or being too busy with internal bonus discussions to bother with the President — were Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, Morgan Stanley CEO John Mack and Citigroup Chairman Richard Parsons.

Yes, Obama inherited a big financial mess from the Bush administration – which inherited its set-up from the Clinton administration (financial recklessness, it turns out, is non-partisan) — but he and his appointees have spent the year talking about fighting risk and excess on Wall Street, while both have grown.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner patted himself on the back for making the “difficult and necessary” decisions of fronting Wall Street boatloads of money to cover its losses and capital crunch last fall. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke (a Bush-Obama favorite) was named Time Magazine’s Person of the Year for saving the free world as we know it. And Congress is talking “sweeping reform” about a bill that leaves the banking landscape intact, save for some minor alterations. For starters, it doesn’t resurrect the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, which separated risk-taking (once non-government-backed) investment banks from consumer oriented (government-supported) commercial banks.

Meanwhile, Wall Street is restructuring (the financial equivalent of re-gifting) old toxic assets into new ones, finding fresh ways to profit from credit derivatives trading, and paying itself record bonuses — on our dime. Despite recent TARP payback enthusiasm, the industry still floats on trillions of dollars of non-TARP subsidies and certain players wouldn’t even exist today without our help.

Wall Street’s return to robustness and Main Street’s continued deterioration are the main takeaways for 2009 that stemmed from the 2008 choices to flush the financial system with capital and leave the real economy to fend for itself. Lies that exacerbate this divide only perpetuate its growth. With that, here is my top 10 list of lies. Please consider adding your own, and let’s all hope for a more honest New Year.

1) The economy has improved.

Earlier this month, Bernanke declared, “Having faced the most serious financial crisis and the worst recession since the Great Depression, our economy has made important progress during the past year. Although the economic stress faced by many families and businesses remains intense, with job openings scarce and credit still hard to come by, the financial system and the economy have moved back from the brink of collapse.”

Sure, the economy is better — if you work at Goldman Sachs or had an affair with Tiger Woods. But while Bernanke, former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and Geithner turned the Federal Reserve into a national hedge fund (cheap money backing toxic assets in secrecy), and the Treasury Department into a bank insurance policy, the rest of the real economy took hit after hit — starting with jobs.

The national unemployment rate remains at double digits. Despite Washington’s bizarre euphoria about unemployment rates last month being better (they edged down in November to 10 percent from 10.2 percent in October), the number of Americans filing for initial unemployment insurance rose during the second week of December. After all the temporary holiday hires, that number will probably increase again. Plus, unemployment rates in 372 metropolitan areas are higher than they were last year.

2) If you give banks capital, they will lend it out.

On Jan. 13, 2009 Bernanke concluded that “More capital injections and guarantees may become necessary to ensure stability and the normalization of credit markets.” He said that “Our economic system is critically dependent on the free flow of credit.” He was referring to the big banks. Not the little people.

Ten months later, though, he admitted that, “Access to credit remains strained for borrowers who are particularly dependent on banks, such as households and small businesses” and that “bank lending has contracted sharply this year.”

In other words, big banks don’t share their good fortunes. Shocking. And as a result, bankruptcies are rapidly rising for businesses and individuals – a direct result of lack of credit coupled with other economic hardships like job losses.

Total bankruptcy filings for the first nine months of 2009 were up 35 percent to 1,100,035 vs. the same period in 2008. The number of business bankruptcies during the first three quarters of 2009 eclipsed all of 2008. Individual consumer filings totaled 373,308 during the third quarter of 2009 and were up 33 percent vs. the same period of 2008. Tell those people about the free flow of credit, Ben.

3) Taxpayers are being repaid.

On December 17, the Treasury Department announced: ”As a result of our efforts under EESA (the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act that spawned TARP), confidence in our financial system has improved, credit is flowing, and the economy is growing. The government is exiting from its emergency financial policies and taxpayers are being repaid.”

Even as banks rush to repay TARP in order to get the government off their backs before annual bonuses are set, the Treasury Department is helping them out. On December 11, the Internal Revenue Service gave government-subsidized banks a tax exemption that, for instance, allows Citigroup to keep the benefit of $38 billion. Three days later, Citigroup announced its $20 billion repayment of TARP. Get the math? Not exactly a taxpayer windfall.

Additionally, the FDIC gave banks including Citigroup, Bank of America, and JPMorgan Chase a holiday gift — at least a six-month break from having to raise capital to support the billions of dollars of securities (read: toxic assets – remember those?) that firms are going to have to add to their books in 2010. That will open a whole new can of worms – a glimpse into either insolvency and a replay from the too-big-to-fail scenario, or book-cooking (the Financial Accounting Standards Board, as of last year, has allowed banks to price their own assets if there’s no true market for them – fun times), or both. Meanwhile, banks can use the capital for bonus payments instead.

4) Homeowners are being helped.

Last year’s big lie was that banks would turn around and help their borrowers if they got federal money. Yet, they were under no obligation to do so, and thus, they didn’t.

Since the Obama administration released guidelines for the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) on March 4, 2009, the HAMP permanent loan modification numbers have been anemic.

Separately, by almost every measure, mortgage and credit problems are worse this year than last. There were almost a million new foreclosure fillings in the third quarter of this year, 5 percent more than in the second quarter, and 23 percent more than during the third quarter of 2008.

Plus, foreclosures are not abating. Mortgage delinquencies (borrower 60 or more days overdue) increased for the 11th quarter in a row, reaching a national average record of 6.25 percent for the third quarter of 2009. Delinquencies precede foreclosures. Compared to last year, mortgage borrower delinquencies are up 58 percent. Meanwhile, banks are sitting on properties they acquired to avoid selling them into the market and having to book the resultant loss.

5) Big banks will help small businesses.

On October 24, because a whole year had passed without this happening, Obama declared, “It’s time for our banks to stand by creditworthy small businesses and make the loans they need to open their doors, grow their operations and create new jobs.”

Small businesses, which employ half of all private sector employees, had received less than $400 million in new loans under government programs, and were granted access to just one program that buys up to $15 billion in securities tied to small business loans. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA) the number of approved loans shrunk from 124,360 in 2007 to 69,764 in 2009 (it was 93,541 in 2008).

Two months later, since that didn’t work, Obama reiterated, “given the difficulty business people are having as lending has declined, and given the exceptional assistance banks received to get them through a difficult time, we expect them to explore every responsible way to help get our economy moving again.” He asked the big bank chiefs to take “extraordinary” steps to revive lending for small businesses and homeowners.

Too bad banks don’t gear their business strategy to expectations and suggestions. Still, as a gesture of good faith, Bank of America promised to kick in an extra $5 billion more to small- and medium-sized businesses next year. JP Morgan Chase promised to increase lending by $4 billion. Goldman had already decided to go the pledge route a few weeks earlier, putting up half a billion dollars in small business “charity” to help its deservedly negative image.

To make up for what the banks aren’t doing, the Obama administration is setting aside $30 billion from the financial bailout fund to stimulate lending to small businesses.

6) The Fed values transparency.

On February 10, Bernanke told the Committee on Financial Services that he “firmly believes that central banks should be as transparent as possible. Likewise, the Federal Reserve is committed to keeping the Congress and the public informed about its lending programs and balance sheet.”

Yet, on March 5, the Fed refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request and lawsuit filed by Bloomberg News to disclose the details of its 11 lending facilities. In front of the Senate Budget Committee, and in response to a question from Senator Bernie Sanders, I-VT, about naming the firms that got money from those facilities, Bernanke said “No” — such disclosure would be “counterproductive” and risk “stigmatizing banks.”

Undaunted by this irony, on May 5, before the Joint Economic Committee, Bernanke reiterated, “The Federal Reserve remains committed to transparency and openness and, in particular, to keeping the Congress and the public informed about its lending programs and balance sheet.” He told PBS NewsHour on July 28 that “We are completely open to providing any information Congress wants.”

To date, the Fed has not disclosed the recipients of its cheap loans for toxic collateral.

7) History will not repeat itself.

In the beginning of the year, Obama said of Wall Street firms, “There will be time for them to make profits, and there will be time for them to get bonuses. Now is not that time.”

He also said that “part of what we’re going to need is for the folks on Wall Street who are asking for help to show some restraint and show some discipline and show some sense of responsibility.”

Yeah. Wall Street’s really into restraint….

Nine month later, as banks were racking up record profits and bonuses, Obama said the same thing, in different words, in his September 14 Federal Hall speech. “We will not go back to the days of reckless behavior and unchecked excess at the heart of this crisis, where too many were motivated only by the appetite for quick kills and bloated bonuses… the old ways that led to this crisis cannot stand…History cannot be allowed to repeat itself.”

The only problem? History was repeating itself, as he spoke. Big banks took more risk in 2009, and posted more of their profits from trading operations than they had before they nearly collapsed in 2008. Trading profits at the top five banks rose from a $608 million loss in 2008 to $118.5 billion for annualized 2009, and $61.7 billion in 2007.

8) The pay czar will fight against – pay.

Treasury Department pay czar Ken Feinberg was supposedly appointed to keep a lid on excessive compensation for companies sitting on federal bailouts. Two problems with that: first, the Treasury Department continues to ignore the fact that the TARP portion of the bailout was only a tiny portion of the full bailout, and second, Wall Street was pushing back and winning at every turn.

For instance, after announcing he’d cap compensation for the top 25 execs at AIG, on October 23, Feinberg gave three of them a pass. These men were apparently “particularly critical to the company’s long-term financial success.” Turning to his other role as Wall Street’s mouthpiece, Feinberg made excuses for AIG. “AIG compensation practices are unique. We took into account independent, very credible opinions of others to come up with a package that we think will help AIG thrive.” That’s nice.

But he’s not kidding about thriving – those three employees will receive bonuses of about $4 million, $5 million and $7 million. AIG’s new CEO, Robert Benmosche, who joined AIG in August and got his pay approval out of the way on October 2, is bagging $10.5 million in annual compensation, including $3 million in cash, $4 million in stock options and $3.5 million in annual performance bonuses.

Then, on November 12, Feinberg said he was “very concerned” about scaring away top talent at the seven firms that took the biggest bailouts. Way to keep a lid on it, Ken.

But to be fair, it’s not really Feinberg’s fault. New York Fed and Treasury Department officials have been urging him to dial back restrictions for AIG folks in 2010 as well. Why? Because restricting pay will make it harder for the government to get back its loans to AIG. Right. Somehow paying these people stupid sums of money is the only way to get our money back. Because their “talent” worked out so well going into last year.

Elsewhere on Wall Street, the top six banks are getting set to pay out $150 billion in bonuses ($10 billion more than in 2008). GS is leading the pack in terms of bonus increases; it will dole out a projected $22 billion in compensation in 2009, compared to $11.8 billion in 2008 and $20.2 billion in 2007. JPM put aside $29.1 billion for 2009, compared to $24.6 billion in 2008 and $29.9 billion in 2007. Wells Fargo is spending $26.3 billion this year, compared to $23.1 billion in 2008 and $25.6 billion in 2007.

9) The lobbyists made us do it.

Going back to the big bank love fest at the White House earlier this month, execs promised to do better on regulation matters, citing a “disconnect” between their steadfast support for regulation and the fact that their lobbyists were pushing for as little new regulation as possible.

Really? Because this disconnect cost the financial sector $334 million so far this year for 2,560 lobbyists; a pittance compared to bonuses, but still, hard-taken cash. I’m sure another $334 million is coming to fight for stricter regulation in the New Year. Not.

10) Citigroup is the picture of health and too-big-to-fail is over.

Once the nation’s largest bank, later its largest bailout recipient, the firm exited its TARP obligation on December 14 with CEO Vikram Pandit stating, “Once Citi repays the $20 billion of TARP trust-preferred securities and upon termination of the loss-sharing agreement, it will no longer be deemed to be a beneficiary of ‘exceptional financial assistance’ under TARP beginning in 2010.” (Read: I don’t want to hear about compensation caps anymore!)

He went on to say that, “By any measure of financial strength, Citi is among the strongest banks in the industry, and we are in a position to support the economic recovery.”

Shareholders didn’t feel the same way. Citigroup shares already trading well below those of its main competitors have fallen 13.5 percent since that announcement. One of their key clients, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, accused the firm of misleading them over a $7.5 billion investment. Plus, in order to come up with the money to pay back the government, they had to raise it in the markets, thus diluting their stock – all to keep their petulant star employees happy at bonus time.

The Citigroup story should be examined for the other big banks. They may talk tough about paying back the government, but underneath they are hurting. And their pain will become our cost again – because nothing fundamental has changed this year, and that means – floating on our public money, these banks are actually still ticking time bombs.

Bonus Lie: Goldman Sachs is sorry.

On November 17, Lloyd C. Blankfein said he was sorry about his firm’s role in the financial crisis. “We participated in things that were clearly wrong and have reason to regret, we apologize.” He didn’t say he was sorry the firm is still floated on $43 billion of total subsidies including FDIC guarantees for debt it raised, that were logically supposed to aid consumer oriented banks, and the $12.9 billion it got through the AIG bailout.

Yet the firm has the highest percentage of trading revenue of all the banks that got assistance; in other words, the revenue most linked to risk-taking, at 79 percent, or $38 billion out of $47 billion for annualized 2009. This is up from 41 percent, or $9 billion in 2008, and 68 percent in 2007 and 2006. And as noted before, Goldman leads the bonus sweepstakes for 2009. The firm is probably not very sorry about all of that.

Maybe I’m being too hard on everyone. Maybe all those toxic assets we all forgot about have value now. Maybe bank profits are based on something real. Maybe the increasing reserves against increasing credit losses aren’t happening. Maybe those foreclosures aren’t really happening. Maybe banks aren’t sitting on homes because they don’t want to dump them into the market and ruin the fantasy that prices have hit bottom. Maybe eight million jobs are waiting on the other side of 2010. Maybe I should just send a holiday card to Goldman saying thanks for everything. I’m sorry I ever quit. Maybe Lloyd Blankfein really is God.

Or maybe, the next mammoth pillage will be the one that makes a difference. But I truly don’t want us to have to find out. May 2010 be the start of a more insightful decade.

Source: Alternet

Bernanke, BATF, Border Patrol, Digital TV, and the Power of the Sheriff | Reality Report

FederalReserveIn this edition Gary Franchi presents another update from Ron Paul on the Audit of the the Federal Reserve system and a shocking admission from Ben Bernanke that he’s clueless about where the money is, and he provides a story about the new global currency, and presents an update from the pastor that was beat up by the Border Patrol.

Gary will also present to you the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms response to Tennessee and Montana’s recent legislation against federal intervention in their state firearms laws. He will also share what a recent IBM employee thinks will happen to the new swath of frequencies recently opened up by the abandonment of the analog TV signal, and present part one of a series on The Power of the Sheriff, presented by Sheriff Mack.


CNBC Anchors Mortified That Ron Paul Was Allowed Air Time

Ben BernankeSteve Watson

Thursday, Feb 26th, 2009

CNBC anchors were left dumbfounded and acted overtly cantankerous yesterday after Congressman Ron Paul’s opening statement at the House Financial Services Committee was broadcast live to an audience of millions.

CNBC went live to the House, clearly without knowing that the Texas Congressman had the initial Republican statement at the hearing of Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke.

After the Congressman spent two and a half minutes lecturing Bernanke on sound money principles, warning that the financial crisis cannot be solved by merely creating credit out of thin air, CNBC cut back to the studio.

Anchors Erin Burnett and Mark Haines were so perturbed by what they had just heard that they immediately cut to a commercial break:

Haines: “This is not going as planned”

Burnett: “No it is not”

Haines: “We were told that there would be a very limited number of opening statements, and it seems to be getting out of control.”

Burnett: “Here’s what we forgot, everybody is taking this live, you know what that means? Why would they miss an opportunity for free air time?”

Haines: “We’re going to take a commercial break and get them out of the way, so that when something really substandard [he must mean substantial?] is happening, we don’t have to interrupt them.”

The Congressman’s speech was powerful and eye opening:

“This is the end of an era,” said Paul, “we can’t reinflate the bubble….if we think that we can reinflate this bubble by artificially creating credit out of thin air and calling it capital, believe me we don’t have a prayer of solving these problems – we have a total misunderstanding of what credit is versus capital.”

Of course, in the eyes of the corporate media shills for the Fed, the Treasury, and Wall Street Paul’s words were “out of control”. How dare he speak such sense and actively question the logic of the almighty ones, our only hope, our saviors (who also happen to be the very same set of criminals that led us down the path to economic ruin in the first instance).

Then again, how could we expect anything else from the likes of CNBC’s Burnett and Haines, who have previously demonstrated a total lack of understanding of the underlying causes of the financial crisis, even commenting that gold has “no inherent value”.

Research related articles:

  1. Ron Paul Grills Bernanke: “You Can’t Reinflate The Bubble”
  2. CNBC Analyst: Global Bank, Global Currency Within 15 Years
  3. Ron Paul: Bernanke Deliberately Destroying Dollar
  4. Ron Paul Slams “Born-again Budget Conservatives”
  5. Ron Paul Hits Out At “Arrogant” Greenspan
  6. Ron Paul: Secretive Elite Control America
  7. CNBC Host Recommends Statins be Put in the Water Supply
  8. Obama Win Will Not Change Rigged Economy
  9. Paul Lectures Bernanke: U.S. Moving Towards Fascism
  10. Why The Fed Allowed Derivatives Trading on a Sunday
  11. Ron Paul: Greenspan, Bernanke Should Be Criminally Charged
  12. Ron Paul: Stimulus Packages Will Turn Recession Into A Depression

Source: InfoWars

Final Version of the Economic Stimulus Plan: How It Impacts Your County (e.g., Jackson County, Oregon)

President Obama has just signed a $790+ billion “stimulus” package for the economy, but do you really believe that will actually help our local economy (or just make government bigger, increase the debt and put more burden than ever on the rest of us)?

If you want to see where the money is being spent (your share of the $2,600 per capita increase in the federal debt) for the “Economic Stimulus Bill” read the following summary:

Senate Final Stimulus Bill Summary

Oregon Governor Targets Federal Stimulus Dollars
Senate Stimulus Bill

Your fair share?

The State of Oregon will have to compete for it’s share of the $30 billion slated for the states. At last count Jackson County was slated to receive only $400,000 of that money.

Since the federal debt is increasing at $2,600 per capita for this single expenditure alone (that’s a future obligation for each individual in the country, every man, woman and child), wouldn’t it be a better idea to organize our own local capital and resources to provide for our own needs instead of relying on government to do this for us?

Wouldn’t it make more sense to stop relying on the federal government to bail us out, and start doing this ourselves?

So let’s do the math.

According to the 2006 census Jackson County has a population of 197,071 (updated to 198,615 according to recent statistics on the county website). In effect each of us in Jackson County owes an additional $2,600 to the Federal Reserve Bank (or roughly $520,000,000 given a population of 200,000). That’s a lot of money theoretically leaving Jackson County (if indeed the Fed ever called in the debt).

If each of us in Jackson County had the ability (and the desire) to pool our own local capital of $2,600 per capita and funded our own developments and capital projects (instead of the trickle down effect from Washington DC), we’d have a capital fund in excess of $520,000,000 (that’s right millions of dollars, five times the annual budget of the City of Ashland) instead of a mere trickle down of $400,000 from the Economic Stimulus Plan.

Something is terribly wrong with this economic picture.

  • Problem 1 is we cannot create money out of thin air the way the government and banks do.
  • Problem 2 is government spending at this magnitude will not only increase the debt per capita, but devalue the currency (meaning you’ll get less bang for the buck, in effect less purchasing power). This will make the economy worse, not better for most of the people.

Yet all those smart people in Washington DC (and a few newly elected) don’t seem to understand the consequences of such spending for the rest of us. You get my drift?

Now, it’s up to us to do something about it.

How can we refocus our efforts to the LOCAL AND REGIONAL community? What positive and hopeful visions and projects would you like to bring to the table and invest your time, effort, energy and resources (including money)?

U.S. Public Debt

The United States total public debt, commonly called the national debt, or U.S. government debt, is the amount of money owed by the federal government of the United States to holders of U.S. debt instruments. Debt held by the public is all federal debt held by states, corporations, individuals, and foreign governments, but does not include intragovernmental debt obligations or debt held in the Social Security Trust Fund. Types of securities held by the public include, but are not limited to, Treasury Bills, Notes, Bonds, TIPS, United States Savings Bonds, and State and Local Government Series securities.[1]

As of February 12, 2009, the total U.S. federal debt was $10.76 trillion [2], or about $37,703 per capita. Of this amount, debt held by the public was roughly $6.45 trillion.[3] In 2007, the public debt was 36.8 percent of GDP [4], with a total debt of 65.5 percent of GDP.[5] The CIA Factbook ranked the total percentage as 23rd in the world.[6]

Public debt is the amount owed by the government to its creditors, whether they are nationals or foreigners. External debt is the debt of all sectors of the economy (public and private), owed to foreigners. In the U.S., foreign ownership of the public debt is a significant part of the nation’s external debt. The Bureau of the Public Debt, a division of the Department of the Treasury, calculates the amount of money owed by the national government on a daily basis.[7][8][9][10] Source: U.S. Public Debt

The estimated population of the United States is 305,670,162 so each citizen’s share of this debt is $35,252.68.
Source: U.S. Debt Clock

Twenty Bailout Banks Cut Lending: Nationalization Considered

capitalbldg1-288Although a main purpose of the Troubled Asset Relief Program was to increase bank lending, a new report casts doubt that recipients of TARP funds are following through. The AP reports the “20 largest banks that received government rescue funds slightly reduced their lending to consumers and businesses in the last three months of 2008.”

The report “is the latest sign that the bailout has done little to increase bank lending.” According to the Washington Post, “The banks that got the most government money, Bank of America and Citigroup, led the retreat.” The Wall Street Journal adds that Treasury officials acknowledge that “the expected decline in fourth-quarter lending was a sign that the program wasn’t working as intended.”

Greenspan: Banks Need Billions More The Financial Times reports former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan said yesterday that the Obama administration “will have to go back to Congress for more money to recapitalise the banking system.” Greenspan’s “comments suggest the need for hundreds of billions of dollars over and above the funds remaining” in the TARP.

Graham: GOP Open To Nationalizing Banks The Financial Times reports, “Nationalization is gaining rapid acceptance among Washington opinion-formers,” including Republicans. The Times notes that Sen. Lindsey Graham “says that many of his colleagues, including John McCain…agree with his view that nationalization of some banks should be ‘on the table’.”

US Has Lost $86.5 Billion On Preferred Shares The Hill reports that the federal government “has lost $86.5 billion in the stock market since the end of October courtesy of the Wall Street bailout.”