Friday, April 30, 2010
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Is The Massive Gulf Oil Spill A Result Of Captured Regulators?
So, we all see that our federal government has been captured by Wall Street but that is just the tip of the iceberg. We see repeated deaths in coal mines with substantial unresolved safety issues (including another this week) that involves some level of captured regulators, we have this massive energy spill, we have a food and drug administration working under the same dynamic, we have a government that has done nothing to protect American workers from tens of millions of undocumented workers thus collapsing wages and benefits, we have a government that does nothing to protect intellectual property rights with our trading partners, we have a government that does nothing to protect Americans from predatory health insurance companies and on and on and on. There is no end to the profligacy of the whores in Washington.
If anyone believes this is a financial crisis, they need to wake up. This is a crisis created by a captured federal government across just about every one of our liberties and economic disciplines.
Gulf oil spill leak link
Goldman Apparently Wants To Keep Its Secretive And Unsavory Shenanigans Out Of The Public Eye And Settle With The SEC
If the SEC settles, there is likely to be an enormous backlash against the SEC by the vast majority of Americans. I don't know if the SEC can politically afford to settle. That would be very, very bad news for Goldman Sachs.
Miracles Do Happen. The DOJ Dusts Off The Rule Of Law For ONE Of Countless Predatory Monopolies(Oligopolies) In Every Industry
The Global Economic Miracle Continues - Spain's Unemployment Rate Now Above 20%. Spanish Youth Unemployment Rate Plows Through 40%.
Republicans Cozy Up To Wall Street Bribery Machine And Oppose Substantial Reform Of $600 Trillion Derivatives Gambling Casino
China, The Land Of No Rule Of Law, Tries To Extort Intellectual Property From Western Firms Seeking To Bid On Government Contracts
The Most Prized Jobs In The Most Prized Company In The Most Prized Industry Are Based On Mental Masturbation According To Goldman Sachs Employee
Continuing to talk about himself in the third person, he wrote, “Standing in the middle of all these complex, highly levered, exotic trades he created without necessarily understanding all the implications of those monstruosities!!! Anyway, not feeling too guilty about this. ...”
In an e-mail to his girlfriend, he called his “Frankenstein” creation “a product of pure intellectual masturbation, the type of thing which you invent telling yourself: ‘Well, what if we created a “thing,” which has no purpose, which is absolutely conceptual and highly theoretical and which nobody knows how to price?’ ”
In another e-mail to her, he blithely joked that he was selling toxic bonds “to widows and orphans that I ran into at the airport.” At least the Fabulous Fab had the good manners to cloak his feelings of fabulousness in front of the committee and put on an earnest mask. Luckily for Goldman, greed may trump ethics. The firm’s stock closed higher Tuesday. Wholesale olive oil closed higher as well.
This is why we as a society have had to backstop tens of trillions of dollars. This is why we seek to give more power to the completely incompetent Federal Reserve. This is what our government leadership told us was necessary to save so that we could have a vibrant economy and recovery. This is what the Goldman Sachs CEO and our former Treasury Secretary created. These are the jobs of the future our brilliant Wall Street leaders and Washington politicians have chosen for our society while giving away the greatest industrial powerhouse the world has ever seen.
The market punishes stupidity mercilessly. Or put another way, there is a reason a flightless bird with the brain the size of a pea, the Dodo bird, went extinct once predators were introduced to its ecosystem. That the Dodo birds in the United States government and 0n Wall Street believe they need to save this system and continue to lobby against reform while politicians squabble about how much to reform this stupidity, is stupidity in itself. Effectively a form of double stupidity. Stupidity squared. Is there such a thing as double jeopardy stupidity? As we have said repeatedly, bring back Glass Steagall. Ban the merger of banks and investment banks. Ban all co-mingling of financial services. Ban any kind of bank trading in any market be that the bank holding company or the actual bank. We don't need to give our banks the ability to even trade as a hedge. There is no hedge against stupidity. An economy based on sound fundamentals of a self-determined people is the best hedge for a sound banking system.
A long time ago we wrote on here that whenever a society held banking up as the most prized jobs, that was a sign of a completely brainwashed belief system. Banking is a bureaucratic function. A possibly noble job but still a bureaucratic job. Nature soon finds a way to rid itself of stupidity. ie, Natural selection, survival of the fittest, evolution or whatnot. It would be nice to see our government attempt to proactively transform out economy in order to mitigate the next crisis and create economic opportunity but it really doesn't matter what our lobbyist-bribed government does or doesn't do. Just like the Dodo bird, nature will take care of similar Dodos running our economy, our political apparatus and Wall Street.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
ECB's Trichet Uses Bernanke's Central Bankster Fear Tactics On EU Citizens - Bail Out Greece Right Now Or Else
Quick Remarks About Goldman Sachs' Testimony
Investors must believe that their investment banker would not offer them the bonds unless the banker believed them to be safe. This throws a heavy responsibility upon the banker. He may and does make mistakes. There is no way that he can avoid making mistakes because he is human and because in this world, things are only relatively secure. There is no such thing as absolute security. But while the banker may make mistakes, he must never make the mistake of offering investments to his clients which he does not believe to be good.
Goldman documents make clear that in 2007 it was betting heavily against the housing market while it was selling investments in that market to its clients. It sold those clients high-risk mortgage-backed securities and CDOs that it wanted to get off its books in transactions that created a conflict of interest between Goldman's bottom line and its clients' interests.
--Senator Carl Levin's remarks in yesterday's Subcommittee on Investigations testimony
Just a few remarks since the Goldman testimony has wrapped up. I took most of the day off and watched the testimony. I'm not sure anything criminally-damning was discussed but this is far and away the most damning information that the public has seen about the conflicts of interest, if not outright fraud, on Wall Street. In other words, the court of public opinion is going to be able to rule with even more moral clarity given this damning testimony. And I was right about my remarks some days ago re Blankfein not understanding markets, economics or business. His testimony was very perplexing on many topics - risk management, the role of banking in society, the role of Goldman's client in the success of its business, why we create markets, what role speculation plays in a business market, etc. Seemingly this CEO has a very limited grasp of reality or his special purpose granted to Goldman Sachs by a democratic society. In fact, after this testimony, I think it's high odds Blankfein will be given an opportunity by the board to leave Goldman Sachs.
Wall Street has so consumed itself with a business model that is so completely irrelevant to the economy that I don't think he or anyone else on Wall Street really understands they are completely irrelevant. In fact, a Goldman executive remarked today that were certain regulations enacted that American financial firms would be less competitive in those markets and we would most certainly lose business to overseas financial markets. That remark was specifically about derivatives but it could be expanded to a multitude of topics covering the vast majority of Wall Street's business model. My response to that loss of business is that we could only be so lucky to lose these businesses to any foreign financial market that would be so incompetent to embrace incredibly risky gambling schemes which add no economic value and, in fact, destroy society's wealth. Wall Street truly is in a bubble. And with it goes a completely deluded incompetence.
This testimony will be dissected countless ways by a somewhat rejuvenated "independent" press (what little of it remains independent) that has an axe to grind with Wall Street after being decimated by this crisis. This was far and away the most damning exposure yet. There is no way Wall Street will ever be able to return to the schemes of the past. Of course, we have been stating that since this crisis started. The status quo has lost even though they were temporarily bailed out and are still sucking society dry with their schemes and scams. The only question I have is given the advancement of electronic markets, why do we need Wall Street at all? Will Wall Street as we know it even survive the next ten years? It would surely be better were it to disappear and be replaced by a distributed electronic market for almost all of the services it provides.
Senator Dodd - Best Friend Of The Bankster Carves Out Special Favors For His Cronies
Financial reform today is nothing more than lip service with an attempt to perpetuate the fraudulent behavior of Wall Street.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Goldman Executive Calls One Of The Products It Sold To Clients As "One Shitty Deal"
Just a quick remark about the Goldman testimony today. I don't know where this will go but Senator Levin's opening remark of about thirty minutes was the most damning remarks of the financial community by a public official that I have ever personally witnessed. We'll see what becomes of it but none of the Senators seemed to be in a particularly good mood and unlike prior testimonies to the banking committees, there was no collegial tone of thanking the banksters for taking time out from their schedule to grace our well-lobbied government officials.
Not all in Congress are behind this massive fraud on Wall Street. Levin, Kaufman and McCain from this panel seem intent on truly reforming Wall Street. In fact, McCain is attempting to bring back Glass Steagall. Something I completely support without exception.
The testimony is live on C-SPAN but it will be available in its entirety tomorrow.
Legitimacy Driven By Moral Clarity Encourages Dissent - China's Communists Seek To Tighten Grip On Dissent
Legitimacy welcomes and encourages dissent. It has nothing to hide and everything to gain. It exists through policies determined by moral clarity. It is noble and virtuous. It hones the blade of its moral superiority and betters itself through reasoned dissent and new ideas. Illegitimacy fears dissent for it knows it maintains itself only through control and power. How many illegitimate bureaucracies can you name in the world today? Not just governments either.
New Poll: President Obama and Ron Paul In Dead Heat For 2012 Presidential Election
There are two keys to driving a movement against incumbents. One is to be anti-establishment given the way Washington is dominated by special interests and seamy deals. The second is to be a populist. ie, To restore restore trust and transparency to our government but to also restore constitutional government by We the People.
The political elites cannot marginalize dissent this cycle as they have so many other cycles. They are trying as best they can. But unlike relatively normal times, this dissent is a populist dissent. I could care less if a candidate is a conservative or a progressive on political issues. I just care that they restore virtue and return our country to its rightful owners both economically and politically. That would be We the People. This poll clearly shows dissent is not abating but actually increasing. That's a very good thing for the future of our country.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
The Goldman Sachs (Wall Street) Ponzi Profit Engine Continues And Other Timely Remarks About Wall Street's Endless Fraud Courtesy Of The State
A friend sent me this old Courier & Ives print shown below. It's from the Library of Congress and is approximately 135 years old. It pretty much sums up countless posts on here remarking of Washington and Wall Street's endless stupidity. And I truly do mean stupidity.
How often have we written on here that humanity and specifically Wall Street learns nothing? That we as human beings are no more intelligent than people who lived thousands of years ago? The only dynamic that separates us from civilizations living ages ago is our accumulated knowledge. Or, in the case of Wall Street, our accumulated ignorance. Hand in hand with any knowledge goes an accumulated belief system that is completely erroneous and without any merit. That is extremely true as it pertains to the marvelous bubble in brainwashed belief systems held within finance, economics, big business and our current political structure. In other words, Wall Street and politicians have unlearned countless truths of the past and are, therefore, substantially more ignorant in many regards than civilizations who lived before us. They are definitely more ignorant that American society was just sixty years ago. Or 135 years ago in the case of this Courier & Ives print.
Goldman Sachs released record earnings this week. Amazing huh? Not really. Not when you create the rules to the game. Rules that involve dismantling society's rule of law or circumvents competition by having privileged or asymmetric access to information. This most definitely is the case for Wall Street's biggest profit engine, trading. We wrote leading up to this crisis that perceived brilliance associated with Goldman Sachs has been a harbinger of economic doom throughout its history. Goldman Sachs' business model defines pretty much 'The Way to Grow Poor' in the Courier & Ives print below. Something that apparently only about five people in today's society seem to understand. Or should I say five people with the microphone. Millions of Americans surely understand 'The Way to Grow Rich' because they live in the real world and have to put food on their table by doing something other than pushing around paper or gambling, mostly with other people's money, which is synonymous with the Goldman Sachs way.
It's no coincidence we have been the only voice on the planet earth who has said Goldman Sachs could actually fail if they don't change their business model. Alternatively, you have truly ignorant carnival barkers like Jim Cramer who have the microphone of society and are in love with the Goldman Sachs franchise of foolishness. It seems quite apparent to me that neither former Goldman CEO and Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson nor current CEO Lloyd Blankfein know anything about capital markets, finance, business or economics. They surely know a lot about current belief systems, dismantling the rule of law, rigging the system and cronyism. It's not too much of a stretch to believe these two leaders of Goldman have unwittingly set the company up for ultimate failure based entirely on a faulty belief system they themselves are substantially deluded by. Brainwashed by. And that is exactly what we have been writing of on here.
I remain very dubious about the lawsuit against Goldman Sachs. As I wrote after its announcement, the SEC is notorious for filing civil cases against Wall Street and then settling, often out of court. Unless we see a serious effort at investigating criminal fraud at other firms on Wall Street or expanding this case to the corner offices of Goldman Sachs due to growing public pressure, this could very well be a politically-motivated attempt to reassure main street. This case could end with a whimper. That will be hard to navigate publicly now that the lid is off the can of worms. But, as it pertains to Goldman Sach's business model, there is nothing that can be politically-rigged or whitewashed. Goldman is in very serious trouble because of market forces that will weigh heavily on the firm. So regardless of what happens as it pertains to litigation, karma for Goldman Sachs will indeed be a bitch. Of course, the same could be said of other firms on Wall Street. In other words, the financial bubble is going to implode regardless of anything the Federal Reserve or politicians try to do to stop it.
We have a bunch of learned idiots running our financial system and our country. They are trying to save a system that should be dismantled expeditiously. There is no value in keeping jobs that destroy capital. When I hear Congresspeople like Mitch McConnell telling us that we need jobs and re-regulating and even prohibiting dubious activity on Wall Street will cost jobs, it sounds more like a mafia boss telling us why we should continue allowing prostitution, gambling and the distribution of heroin in the name of creating jobs. Many Wall Street jobs involve extremely seamy practices or worse, they are destructive to the economy and fraudulent. Oh wait. Isn't the mafia dynamic the basis for government now wanting to legalize marijuana or to build more casinos to raise government revenues? I support legalized marijuana because the government shouldn't be in the business of making criminals rich via prohibition of a substance no more dangerous than cigarettes, alcohol, genetically-modified foods or fast food. And I believe anyone should be able to offer legalized gambling in their establishment in lieu of the government-business corporatist casino monopolies used as taxing vehicles, making a few privileged people rich by defeating competition while supporting more and more incompetence in government.
The Parliament of Whores has destroyed our economy and our regulations for donations and personal power. They have and continue to write countless millions of lines of law that have no relevance to anything other than creating loopholes for personal gain of special interests at the expense of our society and the expense of greater competition and economic vibrancy. Each new piece of fraudulent legislation adds another nail in our economic coffin rather than reviving it through virtuous regulation and market-based competition. And so, rather than transform our society in this time of crisis, politicians seek to keep an illegitimate system going. One that is killing the American economy and American citizen's livelihood. All for personal power and greed. For the benefit of party ideology over virtue and integrity. This is why rules and laws of economic engagement should be written once and never modified unless absolutely necessary as defined by some rigorous litmus test. A perfect example is the dismantling of the Glass-Steagall Act for personal gain and ideology. And any change in the rule of law deemed necessary should be made because it is in the best interests of the people of this country with complete transparency not under the influence of special interests in back room deals. Because most politicians would sell their mother to a pimp for a dollar. And that is exactly why we are in this mess. The leaderless society continues its descent.
Tell me again, how does Wall Street benefit society? Since Lloyd Blankfein is so busy doing God's work, maybe he could take a moment, you know, like in between conversations with God, and outline how Goldman's business model creates long term capital and wealth for American citizens. Maybe he could use examples of wealth creation in, say Compton, California or East Chicago, Indiana or Detroit, Michigan. I'm not talking about how it generates profits by wealth transfer and market-rigging but the actual net-new creation of wealth for society. First of all, I honestly don't believe Lloyd would even understand what I am talking about. On the remote chance he did, it would be a very, very, very brief outline. All part of change you can believe in. It's good to be the king. Not much longer though.
Click on the graphic for a larger readable view. Click once to expand the picture in its own window. Then click again for an even larger original size.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
D-Day Is Tuesday: Goldman Sachs' Absolutely Sickening Email Exchanges
Tuesday's testimony in front of Senator Levin and the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations could be a defining moment in the history of this country. I hate to overdramatize it but Levin has a history of disdain for Wall Street shenanigans and is a crafty old bird. And, in fact his efforts produced a report some years ago showing Wall Street was manipulating energy markets. Something we have hammered on for years. An issue that has not been addressed one iota.
If Levin and others in Congress can raise public awareness and shift public opinion on Tuesday, it could start an avalanche that Wall Street is unable to control regardless of how much money they spend lobbying Congress. The court of public opinion is much more important than anything the SEC is currently doing. The court of public opinion could drive future activity at the SEC, the FBI, the FDIC, Congress, the White House, etc. Don't be too surprised if Senator Levin isn't quite well aware of this fact and, in fact, has called this session for that every reason. We'll just have to watch and see how serious this is.
New Emails Refute Goldman Sachs' Claims And Show It Helped Create Housing Bubble Then Profited From Its Collapse
Bill Moyers And William K. Black Video Interview: Our Political Culture Is Deeply Criminogenic And Many Of Our Current CEOs Are Sociopaths
William Black is such a good interview because he is an insider and an attorney who is the world's most renowned expert on white collar financial fraud.
Black remarks of the latest current events and hammers all of the lies perpetrated by Wall Street and Washington including criminal negligence perpetuated by the SEC and the Federal Reserve. Black doesn't believe the SEC is fully engaged (This is obvious to anyone who is intellectually engaged.) because there are no criminal charges against Wall Street CEOs or senior executives including at Goldman Sachs. He states there never could have been fraud at Goldman Sachs without senior executive involvement given the size of these deals. He outright states that if the SEC were really engaged, the CEO and senior executives at Goldman Sachs would be charged with criminal fraud. He states that there have been investigations into six firms and strong evidence of fraud was found in all six firms yet no criminal charges have been made.
Bill Moyers And FCC Chair Michael J. Copps: Keeping The Internet Democratic And Ensuring Our Democratic Future Through A Strong News Media
This is one of the best discussions I have seen on the role of the news media in a free society and the constructive role government must play in a democracy. That includes the tour of town hall meetings the FCC held across the United States to solicit feedback on the destruction of our media by corporatist interests. The American people were clearly very engaged and very well-informed of the threats a deregulated media are to democracy. (Thanks to Bill Clinton. Once again Bill Clinton was more than likely the worst President in our history from a policy standpoint. As we have noted before, George Bush was a very poor President but Bill Clinton left him with an economy and policy in shambles.)
If our society is going to return to prosperity, government needs to work on behalf of the people aka we must have the return of a rule of law. We must overturn the fraudulent deregulation and destruction of our society by the corporatist state.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Neville Chamberlain Obama's Speech Of Regulatory Appeasement To Wall Street
Appeasement seems to be a relatively common theme in this current Presidency, both at home and abroad. Being cordial, gracious and virtuous is one thing. Appeasement is quite another. Appeasement sends a signal of weakness to people who are often sociopathic predators who sense such weakness. If nothing else, most power-seekers have sociopathic tendencies and can easily sense weakness. It's no coincidence President Roosevelt labeled the American war engine the Arsenal of Democracy and that religion often portrays God as a god of wrath. We know by human behavior throughout history that the fight against evil cannot be won through naiveté and appeasement. And make no mistake, we are indeed witnessing evil, often sociopathic, today in the fraud and corruption that consumes Wall Street.
President Obama's plea to Wall Street to join him in financial reform is a disgrace in my opinion. We cannot and will not ever get true financial reform now that we see the methods used against a cabal that understands one thing. Power. And I respect President Obama immensely as a person so I get no satisfaction watching this charade. One of the problems with this Presidency is that it seems to have a problem of being able to stand up straight on issues of virtue, leadership and re-establishing the rule of law aka confidence in our government. That's usually caused by some type of spinal disorder. Neville Chamberlain also had the same condition. We saw what happened with Neville - his enemies, both domestic and abroad, consumed him with the ease of an after dinner mint.
It's time for our President to wake up. One can be cordial, stately and even gregarious while being an asshole. And sometimes you just have to be asshole when dealing with assholes, something both Presidents Teddy and Franklin Roosevelt knew quite well. It's time for Lady Columbia to smite the evil-doers.
Video link of the President's speech here.
Joke Of The Week: Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein Says SEC Case Against Goldman Sachs Hurts America. BAAAAAAHAAAAAA!!!
Euro Is Headed Towards A New Weekly Closing Low Against The Dollar
Thursday, April 22, 2010
New Report Just Released By The Department Of Health And Human Services: Private For-Profit Health Insurance Mandate Will Raise Nations Costs
Ron Paul : End The Unconstitutional Corporatist (Fascist) For-Profit Private Health Insurance Mandate
The Cycle Of Volatility - North Korea At Night
Volatility Update : Did North Korea Torpedo South Korea's Navy Ship?
An Update On GM's Transformation And A Look At Its New CEO
I worked for GM when I was in college. One day the CEO came to our facility. We knew in advance and days were spent preparing the facility for the arrival of the king. When he showed up there was literally an entourage of fifty sycophantic minions from corporate following him around. They would invariably nod up and down when he said something profound, like, "get me a coffee". (At that time, this was about as profound as a GM CEO would ever get.)
When I first started in business, there used to be a very profound management style that was pervasive in the United States. This was before the rise of MBA programs focusing on Powerpoint presentations, analysis paralysis of reams of data and general theories of profundity. It was called Management by Walking Around.
It seems GM's new CEO, an old-timer, still values a proven leadership skill. In a corporation where ideas are the life-blood of success, it's amazing what you might learn by walking in unannounced and asking someone what they are working on or how their day is going. This is not a favored management style by our current crop of kings. It's also not a favorite leadership style of our politicians in their ivory towers who would rather use divining rods and Ouija boards to glean what is in the best interest of We the People........Our leaderless society......
As we wrote in many of our posts, including our bullish post on Ford when it looked like the company was in a state of permanent misery, if not eventual collapse, the primary goal of a CEO should be to unlock the intellectual capital contained within the organization. To be a facilitator and coach. How better to do that than by actually understanding what's on the mind of associates? What ideas they may have for making the company more successful. This very fact is the basis for lean manufacturing and for the Toyota Way. A form of somewhat democratic corporation........ I wonder how leaderless Washington politics might change were this to be a regular requirement of of being a public servant? I don't think they like coming out of their castles after the ramrodding the American people gave them over how they handled the health care bill.
Andrew Cockburn On The Sham Of Financial Re-regulation, More Mandated Taxpayer Bailouts Planned And More Stoogery By Banker Buddy Geithner
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Once Again Paddy Hirsch - This Time He Explains The Lawsuit Against Goldman Sachs
Unintended Consequence Of Mandated For-Profit Private Health Insurance Bil - California Alone Stands To Lose Half A Billion Dollars Over Ten Years6:09 AM links to this post
Brazilian Bovespa Weakness
The market correction back in January and February was a very different type of correction than any other correction we have had since the rally started in 2009. And, in fact, American equities have outperformed since that correction. Many markets have recovered from that correction but for how long is the question? Global equities are still in a massive bubble. The biggest bubble in history. They will deflate again as economic doom hits the global economy. It's not a matter of if but when.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
The Rise Of Major Corporate Power And The Risk Of Fascism In The United States
Because these two articles are at The Progressive, I want to make a few quick remarks. It seems many ideologically-driven conservative liars label progressivism as a precursor to anything that isn't democracy. That includes socialism, communism and fascism. That is absurdly inaccurate and driven by a rewriting of history. It seems like we are getting a lot of rewritten history lately including some pretty kooky remarks about the main issue behind the Civil War. That these remarks about the Civil War are tied to the equally kooky Virginia governor pronouncement of confederate month is no coincidence. Some are now saying the Civil War was about free trade. This is eerily reminiscent of the crazies who want to rewrite Hitler's atrocities in World War II. There are always revisionists with an agenda. The search to uncover truth is one thing. Lies are another. That there were secondary issues between industrial and agrarian states is surely true. To say that slavery was not the primary issue in the Civil War is preposterous. I guess the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment were just issued for the hell of it.
I have noted countless times that Thomas Jefferson was a progressive. In fact, Thomas Jefferson's disdain for corporate power is quoted in the first article above. Socialism and communism are far left political notions of fairness. Some deluded ideological state of nirvana. They are foolish notions because they do not take into account the human condition. In other words, they make an assumption that most or all people are good and of the same mind. That is a completely invalid assumption with absolutely no basis in reality. People are not good. Nor are they bad. People are people. They all suffer from the human condition which is a very, very complex state of consciousness. The fact that people are not good is the very reason why government, Wall Street, the Catholic Church or no other major bureaucracy should ever be trusted without complete transparency.
Fascism is a far right political manifestation driven substantially of being pro-business. Obviously these are very simplistic remarks because I am not going to write a book. But as we wrote some time ago, it was a pro-business putsch by right-leaning American business leaders that sought to overthrow the United States government under Franklin Roosevelt. Because they thought the United States needed a strong pro-business leader like Adolph Hitler. Adolph Hitler loved American businesses just like China does today. How much of that story is true is up for debate but there seems to be some evidence as outlined in the BBC documentary. These general themes of pro-business are what has become the ideology of the modern Republican party at the national level. Which is why, if you consider yourself a conservative, you likely support little that is going on with Washington Republican elites. It is also why only 12% of Americans have constructive opinions about the national Republican party. It's also why the Republican party is deluded if they they think they are going to take back Washington. The revolt against Washington is against incumbents, not a particular party.
Regardless, both far left and far right ideologies seeking to circumvent democracy are neoliberal ideologies. In other words, a chosen few believe they have the right to rule as our kings and queens. Neoliberalism is much deeper than this as we have remarked before but again I don't feel like writing a book. Needless to say, neoliberalism is running rampant in Washington regardless of political party.
The greatest threat to the United States today is not socialism. It's fascism. A far right big-business corporatocracy involving our federal government. It's also why every American should support State's Rights instead of labeling people who support this dynamic as kooks. Was Thomas Jefferson a kook? He is a father of State's Rights. We see seeds of fascism already in existence with the economic capture of our federal government by big business. If you want one reason to enforce anti-trust regulation across all industries, this is it. Maybe Paul Krugman should learn a little about reality before he writes senseless op-eds that he sees no reason to break up big banks. A clown indeed.
It is a push from the right driven by the corporatist environment that has consumed our federal government with fraud and corruption. And now it has captured both parties and all of Washington. I don't believe fascism subverting our Constitution permanently is remotely possible but who knows. They have subverted it temporarily. This is an issue worth raising so people will get on board with a rejection of Corporate Personhood as the biggest issue facing our country, our economy, our jobs and our future.
We didn't have anti-trust regulations over one hundred years old just for the hell of it.
We have repeatedly remarked that we are not pro-business. That government being pro-business is the foundation of what has gotten the United States into this economic mess. And that we need a return to policy that is pro-markets. Pro-market is not pro-business at all. They couldn't be more different. Pro-markets is based in democracy and opportunity. Of self-determination and free will. Pro-markets would mean an end to all of these trade agreements influenced by a big-business captured federal government. Pro-markets would drive a return to entrepreneurialism and economic opportunity. Pro-markets would be driven by public banking. We don't need Wall Street. Let's take this opportunity to permanently ditch that den of vipers as well.
Confidence In Government Has Collapsed 75% In The Last Forty Years While The Status Quo Remains In Their Deluded Bubble For Now.
We can see on this graphic that there were a few blips upward but the overall trend has been down for decades. The mainstream media and many leftist political ideologues wants us to believe it is only fringe kooks who don't trust the government. Preposterous. This is not an issue that can be defined by extremists or political ideology. This transcends issues of morality for the majority of the people in the United States. We the People are now too informed to be duped by the mainstream media or politicians.
The American economy peaked somewhere between 1980 and 1990 so these polls track quite closely with fundamentals. We see a blip in the late 1990s due to President Clinton's policy decisions which stoked the illusion of wealth which led to the criminally-induced Wall Street technology bubble. (Where was the prosecution for that massive theft?) The technology bubble was a massive lie that had almost nothing to do with underlying economic fundamentals or real innovation. Wall Street truly did bamboozle Americans in that scam. Then a short bout of nationalism following the terrorist attacks on 9/11 where we saw confidence roar to an astounding 40%. Other than that, Americans of all walks of life haven't trusted our government for a long, long time. And that is as it should be. When the government works as public servants on behalf of the American people, we can trust our government.
All of these Washington proclamations of health care reform, financial reform, ending wars, helping homeowners avoid foreclosure, fixing the economy and on and on and on are simply more lies galvanizing the American people's views. It's doublespeak meant to convince Americans that the Washington political boobs are on the job while they simply give us more of the same con jobs.
The American people are substantially smarter than our political idiots or mainstream media give us credit for. And that will ultimately be the demise of this massive corruption bubble in Washington.
Monday, April 19, 2010
China Update - Shanghai Index Drops A Murderous 5% On Monday
On The Surface It Appears The SEC May Have To Charge All Of Wall Street With Fraud For Goldman Case To Stick
Is Senator Levin Readying A Goldman Sachs Trial By Public Opinion Needed To Overcome Washington's Money-Driven Resistance To True Financial Reform?
Top Goldman Leaders - Including CEO Doing God's Work - Said To Have Had Role In Mortgage Unit Charged With Fraud
The Documentary Movie "Food, Inc." To Be Shown On PBS This Week - PLEASE DO YOURSELF A FAVOR AND WATCH IT!
Alan Greenspan has now famously remarked that his libertarian leanings led him to incorrectly believe that markets worked best when they were self-regulated. Greenspan has proven himself to be an ideological boob who should go down in history books as an asshat. How about using market-based gaming theory and mathematics to determine economic policy rather than political leanings? You don't run monetary policy or the economy based on political leanings. This free market stupidity shows a fundamental lack of understanding of markets and mathematics. Libertarianism is a political ideology not a branch of mathematics. A view that the economy should be run on libertarian ideals is like saying we should eat our automobiles when we are done with them. both statements are completely without reason.
If you watch Food, Inc., you will see this same neoliberal ideology we have come to love in financial markets. Food, Inc. discusses:
-Food regulations that have been gutted.
-Special favors within the food business are granted to those who wish to pay Washington
-Self-regulation of food businesses advocated by Greenspan at work in the food industry and the total number of inspections has been completely decimated.
-A once vibrant and competitive industry driven substantially by small business has now been completely gutted of competition and decent jobs because government has shown no regard to enforce anti-trust laws.
-Corporate-created industrialized food dominates American grocery shelves
-Industrialized food is produced in gargantuan quantities because it of massive tax subsidies provided to these producing corporations by American citizens courtesy of Washington payoffs to special interests
-Unregulated corporations destroying family farmers and small business entrepreneurs by depressing income and overproduction
-And because government incents these mega food corporations to overproduce all of this toxic industrial food, they need to find an outlet to get rid of all of it. So, not only do they shovel this shit onto our grocery shelves at below production cost, making it attractive to the economically underprivileged, but they also shovel this shit down our kid's throats in our public school food programs creating a health epidemic amongst Americans.
That's just a little of the pleasure you will witness. It's really a heart-warming movie. It's a movie every single American should see.
If our government or the mainstream media were seeking to education the sovereign people of this country, as they are constitutionally-mandated to do, so that our public servant could make decisions that are in the best interest of our nation, we wouldn't have this crisis. But, in fact, Washington is a den of thieves who generally cares not about anything other than their own drunken power and money-grabbing schemes. So, as I saw the other day on television on a Jamie Oliver special, we feed our kids breakfast pizza and pink milk with high fructose corn syrup laden cereal.
Link to the PBS Food, Inc. web site and show listing times here.
Goldman Sachs Responds To SEC Fraud Charges
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Supreme Court Justice Breyer Expects Substantial Litigation Against Mandated For-Profit Private Health Insurance Bill
So many in the political-media class, who really provide little critical thought other than how a subject impacts politics, want to make the health insurance reform bill a political Democrat-Republican. No, it's a right and wrong issue. Ultimately, were this a reasoned debate, we could have a discussion of whether health care is a human right and what we want health care in this country to look like. But we can't seem to get past the political babble. I had one rabid ideologue label me a Republican because I oppose this crooked bill. Ahem. No, thank you. Not that there is anything wrong with having a particular ideology but I am not a label. I prefer thought and reason to make my decisions rather than attempts at marginalizing dissent because some political idiot tells me that is how I should think.
And that is why Justice Breyer is intimating the Supreme Court is going to be busy over coming years with the content of this massive mandated insurance bill. The Supreme Court generally doesn't hear cases that have are without validity. Generally.
The first hurdle appears to be passed anecdotally with regards to the Supreme Court hearing the constitutionality of this particular bill. That is, a justice is all but stating they are going to here the case filed by the states.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman's CEO, Told Us He Was Doing God's Work. Dylan Ratigan Explains Why Goldman Sachs May Instead Be The Great Satan
We should all congratulate ourselves on these SEC charges. The status quo did everything and anything to sweep all of this under the rug. Even our President remarked time and again that we needed to move forward, implying this crisis and its causes were something to be forgotten. Very few politicians in Washington wanted any of this to come to light. Or any of the other frauds. The stench and rot in Washington is beyond words and the Connecticut attorney general discusses how Washington has kept the states from defending its citizens - Washington rules meant to enable Wall Street's fraud.
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.".
A Follow Up To ProPublica's Magentar Story: Other Wall Street Firms Did Similar Deals To Goldman Sachs' Alleged Fraud
Connecticut Considering Investigation Into Goldman Sachs Fraud
This case is really somewhat disappointing in its scope but we'll see where this leads. In other words, we have been writing since starting this blog that Wall Street has been trading against its clients. And that they were often de-emphasizing their retail business and moving to a model of proprietary trading. So, regardless of this specific claim made by the SEC, the reality is Wall Street's entire proprietary trading model is now predicated on trading without concern and often outright against their clients. And as we have remarked incessantly, they are using society's money to do it. Additionally, the SEC has developed a pattern over the past few decades of charging Wall Street in civil actions without pursuing criminal penalty. Corporations are run by people. Corporations do not commit fraud. People do. Fraud is a criminal matter not a civil matter. I would imagine this could possibly pick up pressure within the courts to involve criminal charges given the populist backlash against Wall Street crooks. That would surely be against the will of the political idiots in Washington who would like a few slaps on Wall Street's wrists then go back to the status quo, but the courts aren't run by political idiots.
A perfect example of the pervasive betting against clients is when we highlighted Goldman was recommending their clients bet against California in the bond market given the state's economic and fiscal trouble. This is outright example of trading against their client because the state of California is in fact a client of Goldman Sachs. Not only that, but it is treasonous for a taxpayer-backed financial institution to be betting against the United States on any matter. That is really using public money to bet against the United States of America. If that is not treason, then what the hell is? Of course as we have highlighted, Wall Street has been betting against the United States for decades.
Friday, April 16, 2010
Yale Economists Recommend Young Americans Use Leverage In Their Investments
State Of Oregon Paid $335 Million In Investment Fees Last Year While Public Officials Seemingly Benefited Personally
Wall Street's endless scams for fees on everything they can find a way to economically insert their way into is coming to an end. We as a society simply cannot afford to pay for what is almost always incompetence or fraud. As it pertains to fees on investments such as this, there are absolutely no data points which show any investments firms can beat their market benchmark over a ten or twenty year period less fees and expenses. Firms would possibly try to refute my remarks but there has been substantial academic work in this arena and most of the "literature" investment firms produce is less than factual.
At some point in time I'm going to put up a post where I repudiate this entire Wall Street fee structure which we have railed on since starting this blog. It is a massive tax on society and has no substantial impact on investment returns. I think it will open quite a few eyes and show just how deluded society has become.
George Soros: We Are Facing A Larger Bubble
Volatility Update: Europe's Largest Undersea Volcano Threatens Italy
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Massive Fireball Seen Across Many States
Jobless Claims Again Near 500,000. Without War Spending And Government Backstop Of Wall Street, Our Economy And Wall Street Would Collapse
Fear And Lie-Based Republican Strategist Spin Document Used By Washington Leaders To Thwart Financial Reform Is Uncovered
Ben Bernanke Wants To Kick Your Grandmother To The Curb And Cut Social Security While Giving Trillions Of Your Money To Criminal Bankers
A Virtuous Circle - Incompetent Wall Street Receives Bailout From Taxpayers Then Proceeds To File Record Foreclosures Against Taxpayers
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Frontline's Documentary On The Dirty Dealmaking And Legalized Bribery That Became Our National Health Care Bill
Dreams of political wins aside and the issue of whether national health care is morally virtuous or not, this bill will either be repealed or changed drastically. It is a corporatist anti-democratic mandate for a private for-profit corporate tax that will inflict heavy economic damage on our country. This bill is really no different than demanding every single citizen buy a car from General Motors. Forget the issue of health care. It is a government-enforced mandate to purchase a private product. It is a massive tax benefiting special interests before the safety and health of American people.
The Only Problem With The American Economy Is Washington. Fix Washington And Fix The Economy.
The Myth Of JP Morgan's Profits - Humpty Dumpty Lives
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Geithner, Wall Street's Primary Regulator During Its Collapse, The Biggest Collapse In History, Shares His Wisdom On How To Prevent A Future Crisis12:13 PM links to this post
China Announces First Trade Deficit In Years - We Now Enter The Beginning Of The End Phase
Yes, there might be extenuating circumstances in this event. We shall see. But exports to the U.S. are not moving in the right direction for China. They are at the lowest level in over a years. Really, none of this point in time data has any relevance. China's fate was sealed long ago. But, let's take a look at some of our prior remarks using some of the current point in time data.
For years we have written that China will eventually quit buying U.S. Treasuries. But unlike the prevailing wisdom held by bears, our remarks were not because of the preposterous notion that they are going to dump treasuries because the U.S. government is profligate. A line of bulloney that has been perpetuated for years. One we have consistently railed against. But instead because they won't have the cashola to do so. I'm sure most everyone thought that was preposterous when we first wrote it. Just like a China trade deficit was preposterous at the time. If one understands how capital flows through the economy, this is the start of the end for China. How long this stage will last, I don't really know. But I would guesstimate we will see a full crisis starting to bloom in China yet this year or in 2011 using history as a precedence.
So, with everyone clamoring for the yuan to rise, with China's balance of trade shifting, even temporarily, why under any circumstances would they allow the yuan to rise in value? And, I can assure you, it will not help this crisis. We discussed that in detail the first year writing this blog.
What happens when the yuan is devalued either by policy or by uncontrollable fundamentals? Something wrote would happen when it was considered preposterous. Strap on your helmet. The United States does not need to rely on these absolutely ridiculous policies to re-ignite its economy.
The race to the bottom of the barrel continues. And with it goes the global economy.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
Random Remarks About Confederate History Month And Humanity's Endless Struggle For Dignity Against The Status Quo
We've probably all compromised our principles at some time or another. It's part of the human condition. With media invading everyone's lives, we clearly see no one is perfect. Such is life. But this recent pronouncement of confederate history month by the governor of Virginia is deeply disturbing to me. It's not so much a compromise of principles but lack of principles.
I believe we should have an intent to learn and share our diversity in a free society. Education, sharing and communication helps us realize as human beings that our differences are generally small while our bonds and desires are most often the same. People around the world seek fulfillment of the same basic needs. To belong, to love and be loved, to achieve, to feel safe, to exercise their self-determination. To achieve some level of basic human dignity. Throughout history, the status quo has often preyed on humanity by perpetuating fears through created and artificial differences. These fears still manifest themselves today as stereotypes and through lies perpetuated to keep people divided rather than united by our shared desires, compassion and connection as spiritual beings.
Divisiveness based on fear and lies allows the status quo to perpetuate their fraud and tyranny over humanity. There are countless examples throughout world history where artificial differences and outright lies were used as a wedge to dominate and control people. I could name many today including ones many aren't even conscious of. That includes blaming "lazy" government workers and the pay and benefits they receive. This disparity is a symptom of the sickness of our economy and the delta must be adjusted, but rather than blaming people for desiring jobs that pay a living wage which allows some semblance of dignity, wouldn't it be more productive for society to focus on everyone receiving a living wage and achieving some level of dignity? To use our energies on behalf of bettering society instead of jealous and often hateful vitriol directed at our fellow citizens? People should be careful what they wish for. Draining more money out of the economy will only perpetuate an environment of worsening fundamentals. This type of divisiveness of attacking others, specifically peer-class members, actually is very common. So much so that psychologists and sociologists have a name for this behavior. Additionally, schadenfreude also plays some role. Another current divisive issue achieved through fear and control is the regular occurrence of coal mining deaths in West Virginia. Given the dubious safety record of many companies, this seems apparent to be putting personal profit over the safety of society. This is symptomatic of a greater divisive dynamic portraying "free markets" (rigged markets) as for the betterment of humanity and fundamental to democracy.
Fears and divisiveness also manifest themselves in every single violent conflict throughout history. Sometimes societies are on the right side of that issue. Sometimes not. Conflict in the last one hundred years alone has killed over one hundred millions people. How much have we lost as human beings because of these atrocities? All perpetuated because of divisiveness, fear mongering and ultimate control by the status quo rather than reasoned and legitimate exchange of differences or grievances. It seems to me that war and tyranny has so desensitized many that hearing that tens, hundreds or thousands of innocent people may die in a day some place in the world, or that tens of millions of people may suffer near starvation, has no meaning. It is simply accepted as part of life or, sadly, even necessary.
As I have written on here before, one of the greatest joys for me being an American is that I have this incredible opportunity to experience the diversity of this country. I'm not proud of the way some of this diversity came to be, but I am proud of where it is going. What other nation can claim to embrace the culture, tradition and people from every country on earth? And that many of these cultures and traditions are often embraced and assimilated into all of society. For everyone to enjoy and lead better lives because of it. The melting pot is a wonderful thing. To accept all people effectively raises our level of consciousness as human beings. The cumulative consciousness of our country continues to develop regardless of what many hate and fear mongers would have us believe. In fact, this development of society's awareness and heightened state of consciousness is a source of great concern for the status quo and they know it. Which is the very reason why we see hate and fear mongering on the rise - often fueled by special interests attempting to interject divisiveness to maintain control.
I simply do not understand this perspective of glorifying the confederacy. Whether that is raising the confederate flag over a state house or naming this confederate history month as the new governor of Virginia recently did. Especially when it is such a sensitive subject for so many Americans of every culture, race and creed. I appreciate history and there are surely positive aspects of southern culture we all celebrate. Learning about and perpetuating southern tradition is one thing. That is a multicultural statement that most people are surely proud of. But confederacy? This brings up images of human beings treated worse than cattle. Human beings who were owned and sold as property. A time when people were raped, beaten and murdered as owners saw fit without any retribution or rule of law. Can you literally imagine being chained and beaten just for breathing? Of having your spirit beaten down so low that it literally has all but vanquished? Can you really imagine? How does anyone glorify confederate history representing the most heinous crimes against humanity imaginable? Are these deeds any less heinous than those of Adolph Hitler? Or Joseph Stalin? Or Pol Pot? They are indistinguishable.
In fact, American and European capitalism is strewn with labor as slavery. This is part of humanity's endless struggle against the status quo. Almost all of it perpetuated by fear and divisiveness with an intent to control. Whether it was European indentured servants, slaves from Africa or China, child labor before labor regulations were introduced, company towns forcing workers to spend their wages and live under tyranny, corporations hiding toxicity to environment and community, today where we effectively see predominantly Mexican slavery through unlivable wages paid to undocumented workers, the impact this dynamic has on underprivileged Americans, the slave factories predominantly of South Asia and then we have the tens of millions of working poor in the United States. Ranks that are growing extremely rapidly. How does any of this rationalize with democracy? With freedom? Of We the People? With a rule of law of a nation built on laws which are meant to grant opportunity to everyone democratically? How does it square with our conscience as a society? How does is square with your conscience? Is your awareness changing?