Geopolitics since World War II has increasingly been defined by global trade and by extension, multinational corporations. As they have escaped national boundaries, governments have become acquiescent to their desires with “Free” trade agreements, favorable regulations and protective laws. More recently, the arrogance of these institutions has been to take on the role of government itself. Corporations make their own laws, hire their own armies, declare war, prosecute criminals, and generally do whatever they want in pursuit of their never ending goal of more.
There is however one power that has remained uniquely a function of government — the creation and management of currencies. It is the government’s most safeguarded and powerful tool, even more so than military power, because it affects all transactions within an economy. Granted, companies already try to influence monetary policy by promoting a cheap dollar, but they lack direct control over the issuance of currency. It is naive to think that companies will allow governments to keep control over the currency without attempting to privatize this power. We are already seeing corporations attempt to gain control over the money in circulation by encouraging consumers to use their alternatives. Read More
While many in the nation are concerned with Edward Snowden, the National Security Agency (NSA) leaker who helped to spread the word about the agency’s spying and data collection within the US, the extent of that spying still remains clouded. Are our calls actually being recorded? Can that information be recalled at a later date? Gen. Kieth Alexander, the director of the NSA says no, but one whistleblower you haven’t heard of not only says yes, but insists its far worse than that.
NSA Whistleblower Russell Tice was the man responsible for leaking the original story about NSA spying to the NYT, held until after the 2004 election and eventually published in 2005. Tice notes in a recent interview that the NSA had been tapping the phones of major political figures — confirming the belief among some that the NSA spying scandal has more to do with political maneuvering than terrorism. Read More
In our last story, we noted how government backed loans in the housing market encourages rising home and rent prices throughout the nation, a transfer of wealth from almost every single American to various establishment organizations. Now we have another example of banks transferring risk to the taxpayer.
The term “Too Big To Fail” should have the addendum NEVER EVER added to it, because, as we have seen with Cyprus, the establishment will do anything to ensure the banks do not fail and prevent the world from plunging into some kind of Mad Max hellscape. To this end, we know the government has claimed the authority to seize bank accounts, and indeed all other forms of private property should it be deemed necessary by whoever, but now we’re getting some specifics thanks to a recent FDIC report called “Resolving Globally Active, Systemically Important, Financial Institutions.”
In this report, they lay out plans to seize private bank accounts (including insured deposits under $250,000) Cyprus style in the event the bank is about to go under and previous methods of bailing them out are unpalatable by congress weary to approve TARP II: Revenge of the Banksters. Read More
The divide between what the majority of people want verses what the establishment wants is never greater than it is when discussing property values. Those who have assets want them to rise in price, while the poor and those just starting out want lower prices they can afford. Of course, they have no political power. The result over the last 40 years has been bubble after bubble, with additional government intervention to keep the party going at all cost.
Listening to CNBC or any business publication, you’d think the economy was nothing but buying and building houses. A recovery in housing is a sign that the renter is being fleeced once again at higher and higher levels. That real wealth creation has collapsed and wages all over the nation are stagnant makes no difference to them. The easy money is in financialization and speculation on these assets. Read More
Bloomberg has a stunning story out about Walmart’s dropping sales figures. In it, they cite leaked internal emails between company executives where they describe in plain language how bad sales are. The emails are only a few days old. Here are some quotes:
On February 12, Jerry Murray, Walmart’s vice president of finance and logistics, wrote:
“In case you haven’t seen a sales report these days, February MTD sales are a total disaster. The worst start to a month I have seen in my 7 years with the company… [since Wal-Mart is gaining market share steadily] that points to our competitive landscape, which means everyone is suffering and probably worse than we are.”
A few days earlier on February 1st, Cameron Geiger, senior vice president of Wal-Mart U.S. Replenishment wrote:
“Have you ever had one of those weeks where your best-prepared plans weren’t good enough to accomplish everything you set out to do? Well, we just had one of those weeks here at Walmart U.S. Where are all the customers? And where’s their money?“ Read More
This is a repost from Chris Martenson’s website PeakProsperity.com where he interviews author James Howard Kunstler on the state of the US society and economy. It’s a great interview and worth reposting here for posterity. Kunstler touches on a lot of themes, most notably the ongoing collapse of key infrastructure which amounts to an ongoing, nationwide “Hurricane Katrina.” They also discuss the ongoing money printing at the Federal Reserve and the commitment of our leaders to kick the can down the road, even as it makes the inevitable collapse all the more dramatic and destructive. Read More