martedì 30 agosto 2011

La Fed salva le banche Inter-Alpha

Da: EIR, anno 20, nr. 35, 1 settembre 2011

L'epicentro dell'attuale crisi finanziaria continua ad essere il sistema bancario Inter-Alpha. La svendita di azioni di Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays Bank, Lloyds, BNP Paribas, Société Générale e Deutsche Bank, tra le altre, ne ha fatto crollare la capitalizzazione di borsa. Mentre tutte queste banche sono molto esposte negli Stati Uniti, esse sono praticamente escluse dal mercato monetario USA e dipendono per la loro sopravvivenza dagli accordi swap della BCE e la Federal Reserve.
In un discorso pronunciato a New York il 24 agosto, il membro dell'esecutivo della Bundesbank Andreas Dombret ha ammesso quanto sopra, notando che il mercato interbancario europeo si sta paralizzando, ma "se c'è bisogno, la BCE è pronta a mitigare le potenziali strozzature, grazie all'accordo swap stipulato con la Fed".
Di fatto, la cosa va avanti dall'inizio della crisi. Il 22 agosto Bloomberg ha pubblicato documenti ottenuti grazie alla legge per la libertà d'informazione, sulle banche che hanno ricevuto gli 1,2 trilioni di dollari di prestiti Fed nel 2008, e i singoli importi. Si è scoperto che quasi la metà dei primi trenta beneficiari sono banche europee. Tra di essi: Royal Bank of Scotland 84,5 miliardi, UBS 77,2 miliardi e Hypo Real Estate Holding 28,7 miliardi. Per Dexia e SocGen non sono indicate le cifre. Tra le banche USA, Morgan Stanley ha fatto la parte del leone con 107,3 miliardi, seguita da Citigroup con 99,5, Bank of America con 91,4 e Goldman Sachs con 69 miliardi.
Si scopre anche che la recente iniezione di 5 miliardi di dollari in Bank of America da parte di Warren Buffett ha a che fare con la crisi europea. Infatti BofA si trova in una situazione particolarmente critica, perché dopo aver perso il 40% del capitale dall'inizio dell'anno e aver dovuto cancellare parecchi attivi, si trova con capitale insufficiente a sostenere la pesante esposizione in CDS su titoli di stato europei.
In un tentativo più disperato che ragionato, le autorità di borsa di Francia, Italia, Spagna e Belgio hanno deciso di prolungare fino alla fine del mese il divieto di vendite allo scoperto delle azioni di 60 banche. La Francia potrebbe addirittura prolungarlo fino al 12 novembre, mentre in Grecia rimarrà in vigore fino al 7 ottobre.
La banca centrale greca ha discretamente attivato il programma di Assistenza di Liquidità di Emergenza, estendendo liquidità alle banche elleniche in cambio di collaterali talmente scadenti che nemmeno la BCE li accetta. Ciò potrebbe aumentare il debito nazionale di 90 miliardi di euro, l'importo totale che le banche hanno finora ricevuto dalla BCE. Quasi un terzo del PIL.
L'economista Raoul Ruparel, di Open Europe, ha commentato che "l'attivazione del cosiddetto programma ALE sembra essere l'ultima spiaggia per le banche greche e suggerisce che esse stiano pericolosamente rimanendo a corto di collaterale valido.. Questo avvia un altro gigantesco giro di titoli pressoché senza valore che saranno spostati dai bilanci delle banche sulle spalle del contribuente. Combinato agli acquisti di titoli spagnoli e italiani, lo stato patrimoniale dell'eurosistema appare sempre più rischioso".

lunedì 29 agosto 2011

Walker Todd: Fed's lending against equities was as good as buying them | Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee

Walker Todd: Fed's lending against equities was as good as buying them | Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee:

'via Blog this'

Euro bailout in doubt as 'hysteria' sweeps Germany

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard: Euro bailout in doubt as 'hysteria' sweeps Germany


Submitted by cpowell on Sun, 2011-08-28 21:33.
Section: Daily Dispatches

By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
The Telegraph, London
Sunday, August 28, 2011

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/8728628/Euro-bail-out...

German Chancellor Angela Merkel no longer has enough coalition votes in the Bundestag to secure backing for Europe's revamped rescue machinery, threatening a consitutional crisis in Germany and a fresh eruption of the euro debt saga.

Mrs Merkel has cancelled a high-profile trip to Russia on September 7, the crucial day when the package goes to the Bundestag and the country's constitutional court rules on the legality of the EU's bail-out machinery.

If the court rules that the E440 billion rescue fund (EFSF) breaches treaty law or undermines German fiscal sovereignty, it risks setting off an instant brushfire across monetary union.

The seething discontent in Germany over Europe's debt crisis has spread to all the key institutions of the state. "Hysteria is sweeping Germany," said Klaus Regling, the EFSF's director.

German media reported that the latest tally of votes in the Bundestag shows that 23 members from Mrs Merkel's own coalition plan to vote against the package, including twelve of the 44 members of Bavaria's Social Christians (CSU). This may force the Chancellor to rely on opposition votes, risking a government collapse.

Christian Wulff, Germany's president, stunned the country last week by accusing the European Central Bank of going "far beyond its mandate" with mass purchases of Spanish and Italian debt, and warning that the Europe's headlong rush towards fiscal union stikes at the "very core" of democracy. "Decisions have to be made in parliament in a liberal democracy. That is where legitimacy lies," he said.

A day earlier the Bundesbank had fired its own volley, condemning the ECB's bond purchases and warning the EU is drifting towards debt union without "democratic legitimacy" or treaty backing.

Joahannes Singhammer, leader of the CSU's Bundestag group, accused the ECB of acting "dangerously" by jumping the gun before parliaments had voted. The ECB is implicitly acting on behalf of the rescue fund until it is ratified.

A CSU document to be released on Monday flatly rebuts the latest accord between Chancellor Merkel and French president Nicholas Sarkozy, saying plans for an "economic government for eurozone states" are unacceptable. It demands treaty changes to let EMU states go bankrupt, and to eject them from the euro altogether for serial abuses.

"An unlimited transfer union and pooling of debts for any length of time would imply a shared financial government and decisively change the character of a European confederation of states," said the draft, obtained by Der Spiegel.

Mrs Merkel faces mutiny even within her own Christian Democrat (CDU) family. Wolfgang Bossbach, the spokesman for internal affairs, said he would oppose the package. "I can't vote against my own conviction," he said.

The Bundestag is expected to decide late next month on the package, which empowers the EFSF to buy bonds pre-emptively and recapitalize banks. While the bill is likely to pass, the furious debate leaves no doubt that Germany will resist moves to boost the EFSF's firepower yet further. Most City banks say the fund needs €2 trillion to stop the crisis engulfing Spain and Italy.

Mrs Merkel's aides say she is facing "war on every front". The next month will decide her future, Germany's destiny, and the fate of monetary union.

domenica 28 agosto 2011

Market crash 'could hit within weeks', warn manipulators

Market crash 'could hit within weeks', warn bankers

A more severe crash than the one triggered by the collapse of Lehman Brothers could be on the way, according to alarm signals in the credit markets.

Stock Trader Clutching His Head in Front of a Screen Showing a Stock Market Crash
The cost of insuring RBS bonds is now higher than before the taxpayer was forced to step in and rescue the bank in October 2008 Photo: Alamy

Insurance on the debt of several major European banks has now hit historic levels, higher even than those recorded during financial crisis caused by the US financial group's implosion nearly three years ago.

Credit default swaps on the bonds of Royal Bank of Scotland, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank and Intesa Sanpaolo, among others, flashed warning signals on Wednesday. Credit default swaps (CDS) on RBS were trading at 343.54 basis points, meaning the annual cost to insure £10m of the state-backed lender's bonds against default is now £343,540.

The cost of insuring RBS bonds is now higher than before the taxpayer was forced to step in and rescue the bank in October 2008, and shows the recent dramatic downturn in sentiment among credit investors towards banks.

"The problem is a shortage of liquidity – that is what is causing the problems with the banks. It feels exactly as it felt in 2008," said one senior London-based bank executive.

"I think we are heading for a market shock in September or October that will match anything we have ever seen before," said a senior credit banker at a major European bank.

Despite this, bank shares rebounded on Wednesday, showing the growing disconnect between equity and credit investors. RBS closed up 9pc at 21.87p, while Barclays put on 3pc to 149.6p despite credit default swaps on the bank hitting a 12-month high. This mirrored the US trend, with Bank of America shares up 10pc in late Wall Street trade after a hitting a 12-month low on Tuesday over fears that it might have to raise as much as $200bn (£121bn). As with the European banks, the rebound in the share price was not reflected in the credit markets, where its CDS reached a 12-month high of 384.42 basis points.

European stock markets joined in the rally. The FTSE closed up 1.5pc at 5,206 on hopes the chance of a global recession had diminished. European shares hit a one-week high, with Germany's DAX closing up 2.7pc and France's CAC 1.8pc higher. The Dow Jones index edged higher on strong durable goods orders data as markets began to accept that the US Federal Reserve is unlikely to signal fresh stimulus at Jackson Hole this Friday.

Even Moody's decision to downgrade Japan's sovereign credit rating by one notch to Aa3 did little to damage global sentiment, although Tokyo's Nikkei closed down just over 1pc.

As stock market nerves settled, gold - which has recorded steady gains recently as investors seek a safe haven - fell 5.3pc to $1,777 in London.

STATE BANKS

STATE BANKS

By Marilyn M. Barnewall
August 28, 2011
NewsWithViews.com

In a speech I give about state banks, I begin by showing 20 slides. Each displays an overhead view of a city. Each city is covered with little red dots. Each dot represents a home in foreclosure… a broken dream for an American brother and/or sister.

Some of those slides were used in a recent article I did about home foreclosures and why so many people who have never missed a house payment are being told to either cough up more collateral for their mortgage loan or the bank will “call the loan” (require payment in full).

In my speech, I use the slides to emphasize the incompetence of the Federal Reserve System and as evidence of why the monetary policies of this private corporation (owned by and for bankers) has failed and why responsibility for monetary policy needs to be returned to the Congress of the United States of America where the Constitution firmly placed it.

Do I trust the Congress more than I trust Ben Bernanke? No. But I do trust the Constitution and respect the structure it put in place for our monetary policies and currency… for our Republic.

My slide presentation begins with Boise, Idaho. One in every 21 homes is in foreclosure in Boise. Several slides of cities in Florida are shown – Tampa, Port St. Lucie, Deltona, Naples – and some California cities like Sacramento, Bakersfield, Riverside and others. All of these cities have more homes in foreclosure than Boise does. There are two slides from Senator Harry Reid’s home state of Nevada – Reno (1 out of every 16 homes is in foreclosure) and Las Vegas (one out of every 9 homes is in foreclosure). Nevadans just re-elected Reid to his Senate seat. As the old saying goes, we get the government we deserve.

The Constitution (Article I, Section 8) quite clearly gives the right to borrow money on the credit of the United States to the Congress, not to a private corporation called the Federal Reserve. It gives to the Congress, not a cartel of bankers called the Federal Reserve, the right to coin money, regulate its value and that of foreign coins, and fix the standard of weights and measures.

The Federal Reserve Act was passed by the Congress in 1913. Thus, it took that private corporation (which, in reality, is nothing more than a middleman… a wholesaler of taxpayer currency) – 98 years to cause all of those little red dots, each representing a foreclosed home in an American city. The Fed has, unlawfully in my view, been in charge of our monetary policy for almost 100 years.

I suggest that this is one hundred year birthday we should not celebrate. It is a celebration we should abort… and I mean that in the worst kind of way.

The United States is $15 trillion in debt. We are spending $1.50 for every $1 in revenue we take in. That is unsustainable. Since every dollar that is printed is 46 cents in debt, it should be called a half-dollar, not a dollar. Printing a dollar bill that is almost 50 percent in debt before the ink dries may provide a new definition of counterfeiting.

The Federal Reserve recently underwent a partial audit that shows it made $16 trillion zero interest secret loans to American and foreign banks and businesses. You’d recognize the usual Wall Street bankster names… e.g., Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan Chase, Citigroup, etc. The foreign banks included some of the biggest in the world… Deutsche Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland, and others. While the Fed was making these zero interest loans (for which U.S. taxpayers are on the line), 6.5 million American homeowners were suffering through delinquent and foreclosed mortgages mostly caused by lost jobs resulting from a rotten economy – created by Federal Reserve policies.

The disastrous policies that have caused these personal nightmares give the American people all the necessary reasons required to demand we take back control of our banking system. We must tell this wholesaler of debt and money that whatever services it provides (other than screwing the people) are no longer needed.

Give authority over our banking system to individual states so the people have more control over their financial futures. When state banks are properly run, both the people and the government prosper… which is the way it’s supposed to be.

If a state implements a new, state-owned financial system, do we need to pay attention and make sure the state doesn’t turn state banks into political toys… follow in the Fed’s footsteps? You’re darned right we do! Had citizens been doing their job this past 98 years, the Federal Reserve wouldn’t have become the biggest financial abuser in world history! We need to watch anything that’s political to keep it from servings its own interests rather than those of the people!

What is a state bank?

There is only one state-owned system of banking in the country and it’s in North Dakota. That state has owned and operated its own system of banking for the past 93 years. So, when I write and talk of the benefits we can expect from implementing a state bank, it’s based on the experience of North Dakota’s bank, not on guess work or estimates.

As of July 2011, the unemployment rate in North Dakota is 3.3 percent. With a population of between 650,000 and 700,000, the North Dakota State Bank has, during the past ten years, paid the State Treasurer more than $325 million from bank profits. These funds keep the tax burden low which, in turn, encourages… what? Business and job growth! That’s one reason unemployment is so low in North Dakota. Think what states with larger populations and very high rates of unemployment – like Michigan – could do!

In 2009-2010, the worst American economy in recent history, North Dakota’s government had it largest surplus in history. The payroll growth in the private sector (not the public sector) during that time frame was 5.2 percent. The payroll growth of Texas placed it second at 2.6 percent. Maybe Governor Dalrymple should be running for President instead of Rick Perry?

When I speak publicly on this subject, people suggest that the North Dakota economy is so successful because of the Bakken oil project where an oil formation lies underground in a shale rock across western North Dakota, northeast Montana, and into Canada’s Saskatchewan Province. The barrels per day went from 3,000 in 2005 to 225,000 in 2010.

There’s no doubt Bakken has enhanced the North Dakota economy, but it’s not what causes the positive economic results. There are almost as many people in Alaska as North Dakota – and Alaska pumps about twice as much oil – unemployment in Alaska is 7.7 percent. Montana and Wyoming extracted far more gas than North Dakota, but neither maintained a continuous budget surplus since our economic crisis began in 2008. North Dakota has.

States with a lot of minerals weren’t initially hurt as badly as other states when the economy turned south. But other states haven’t reduced taxes. North Dakota has. It reduced income and property taxes by $400 million. Thinking of all of those little red dots on my speech slides… North Dakota also has the lowest foreclosure rate and lowest credit card default in the nation.

North Dakota has had no bank failures during the banking crisis, either. It has only one thing not available in other mineral rich states: a state bank.

From 2007 to 2009, the Bank of North Dakota added to the state’s coffers almost as much money as oil and gas tax revenues did.

So, that’s what you can expect from a state bank. Why does having a state bank make such a huge difference? Because the state’s money and banking reserves are maintained within the state and those funds are invested in local communities. And, in addition to a state bank providing needed administrative functions, it serves as a correspondent bank for the independent banks on North Dakota street corners.

There are two or three questions I get asked when I speak publicly about this subject. The most frequently asked question is “Does having a state bank mean that the state runs the banks people do business with?” No. It doesn’t. That would be a socialist system – and state banks are anything but that! The state runs the state bank; individual investors run the commercial banks on Main Street… just like they do now.

A state bank is an administrator which charters the banks that do business in the state (and by doing so, largely controls credit quality). It acts as a correspondent bank for the banks it charters. A “correspondent bank” provides credit services to small, independent banks which places them in a more competitive position with large banks. When a small bank gets a loan request too large for it to make, such a loan is referred to a correspondent bank and becomes a “shared” loan. Without a state bank, independent banks must refer their loans to the big banks – which is one reason they got too big to jail.

I mentioned earlier that North Dakota keeps all state revenues in the state. In other states, a large percentage of those funds are sent to the Federal Reserve – which places them in money center banks in New York. State banks keep those funds in the state and use them to benefit the people.

Some economists estimate that this one difference can turn a state’s economy around within one year.

I started writing about the issue of state banks about two years ago. Since then, numerous states are legislatively investigating how to implement one: Washington, Oregon, California, Montana, Illinois, Florida, Hawaii, Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts are among them.

Another question audiences ask is: If we own a state bank, will we need to create our own state currency? The answer is no. However, a state bank does provide a needed distribution system for a state currency should a state decide it needs to create one. Why would a state need to create its own currency? If the federal system fails, so too will America’s currency (and with it, the national banking system). To distribute any currency, an organized system of banking is required. There are many questions about state currencies, but that is another article.

The other question asked regards state sovereignty.

Several states have legislatively declared their right to be sovereign states. They include: Alabama, Nebraska, Rhode Island, Wyoming, Washington, Indiana, Kentucky, Georgia, Kansas, Missouri, Mississippi and Maryland.

Remember this about sovereignty. It is impossible to have a sovereign state without having control of your state’s monetary system. To achieve that, you need a state bank. As to the arguments about the legality of sovereignty declarations, I leave that to the lawyers. I’m a banker and what I know is this: If a state declares sovereignty without first having a state bank in place, there will be economic chaos. The bank comes first; sovereignty, second.

We face difficult times ahead. I believe state banks are a key that makes it possible for Americans to maintain every possible lawful alternative to solve the problems headed our way.

Marilyn MacGruder Barnewall began her career in 1956 as a journalist with the Wyoming Eagle in Cheyenne. During her 20 years (plus) as a banker and bank consultant, she wrote extensively for The American Banker, Bank Marketing Magazine, Trust Marketing Magazine, was U.S. Consulting Editor for Private Banker International (London/Dublin), and other major banking industry publications. She has written seven non-fiction books about banking and taught private banking at Colorado University for the American Bankers Association. She has authored seven banking books, one dog book, and two works of fiction (about banking, of course). She has served on numerous Boards in her community.

Barnewall is the former editor of The National Peace Officer Magazine and as a journalist has written guest editorials for the Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News and Newsweek, among others. On the Internet, she has written for News With Views, World Net Daily, Canada Free Press, Christian Business Daily, Business Reform, and others. She has been quoted in Time, Forbes, Wall Street Journal and other national and international publications. She can be found in Who's Who in America, Who's Who of American Women, Who's Who in Finance and Business, and Who's Who in the World.

Web site: http://marilynwrites.blogspot.com

Warren Buffett’s Hypocrisy Exposed

Warren Buffett’s Hypocrisy Exposed – Part 1 of 99

David De Graw, August 26th, 2011 · · Activism, Economy, Hotlist, Politics & Government

I still haven’t received any response to my open letter to Warren Buffet concerning his meaningless PR ploy to dupe non-billionaires into thinking he cares about them. Not a single word back from any of Warren’s people yet. Not surprising though, he has been very busy this week.

First off, Warren has been fronting for the system of political bribery by planning a “fund-raising” event for the ultimate bankster puppet, Barack Obama. Maybe I’ll just go to this event at the swank Four Seasons hotel in NYC and have a little conversation with Warren. Does anyone have $35k I can borrow? That’s how much it is to get into this event VIP style.

In return for Warren’s efforts, Obama is desperately trying to stop fraudclosure investigations and limit financial penalties for big banks like Bank of America. After Buffet’s fundraiser was announced, Obama successfully managed to get NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman kicked off the 50-state task force that is investigating foreclosure abuses. Bank of America is facing huge losses in this case, and Schneiderman wanted much more money from the bank than is being considered.

And wouldn’t ya know it, this just in… as soon as Obama gets Schneiderman off the case, Warren bails out Bank of America by investing $5 billion in the company. What a coincidence!

That’s how we roll in Banana Republic USA.

Prid quo pro, bro.

Wink, nod.

Nothing to see here, just keep moving along…

Warren’s hypocrisy is stunning! So let’s recap and break this down…

Warren says he wants to be taxed more by a President who does his bidding. So, essentially, Warren wants the “mega-wealthy” to be taxed more so his puppet politicians will have some more funds to spend on bailing out his criminal partners on Wall Street, thus saving Warren’s personal wealth, yet again. Now, that’s rich – you can see how he got to be the richest man on Wall Street.

As my friend Mike Krieger said, Warren is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. On the surface, Warren sounds like a benevolent billionaire who is willing to sacrifice for the good of the country, yet he hasn’t done anything with his money other than invest billions in criminal vampire companies like Goldman Sachs and Bank of America, and buy off politicians. And now, he has his puppet Obama killing investigations into Bank of America as he is blatantly running apolitical bribery operation and pumping $5 billion of his own money into the bank.

Give me a break!

C’mon Warren, your old PR propaganda tricks won’t fly here.

Let’s debate these issues publicly.

I’ll be glad to discuss these issues over some fine wine at the Four Seasons on September 30th.

I anxiously await Warren’s invite.

I would also like to invite Mr. Buffett to an event I’ll be attending on Wall Street, right in front of his beloved stock exchange, on September 17th. It’s right up Warren’s alley, he can hobnob with some like-minded concerned citizens who will be meeting there.

Hope to hear from you soon Warren.

- David[@]AmpedStatus[.]com

For those of you who haven’t read my letter to Warren Buffett, you can read it here: Open Letter to Warren Buffett: Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is.

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venerdì 26 agosto 2011

Euro nazionali contro l’Eurocrac

Euro nazionali contro l’Eurocrac. Intervista a Marco Saba

eurocrac foto x yt

Blog: Un saluto a Marco Saba del Centro studi monetari, dunque siamo in piena crisi economica ci sono dati contrastanti, in parte dettati dalle borse, che perdono credibilità sui mercati, in parte le sorti degli Stati Uniti. Cosa prevedi a livello politico per quanto concerne l’Italia e più in senso generale il destino della moneta dell’Euro?

M.S. “Bah, dunque la situazione è effettivamente abbastanza complessa, questi cali in Borsa dei titoli che ci sono stati recentemente in realtà sono ancora più gravi di quello che sembrano, nel senso che la moneta in cui sono quotate queste azioni a sua volta sta perdendo valore abbastanza rapidamente. Questo lo vediamo, per esempio, nei confronti del distacco che si è creato tra l’euro e il franco svizzero che ultimamente sembra che si sia rivalutato e l’euro che ha perso di valore. Facciamo fatica a vedere la perdita di valore dell’euro perché sostanzialmente sta avendo un confronto col dollaro degli Stati uniti che più o meno rimane sugli stessi valori, ma dobbiamo considerare che anche il dollaro ha subito un’inflazione… per fare un esempio: una tazzina di caffè a Zurigo costa 5 euro e mezzo, tanto per avere un’idea della differenza di prezzo. E’ vero anche che il franco svizzero insieme all’oro sono considerati
2 beni rifugio, non a caso avete visto che Chavez recentemente ha chiesto di riavere indietro le sue riserve auree, cosa che tra l’altro ha scatenato un po’ di putiferio perché le banche centrali da sempre manipolano al ribasso il prezzo dell’oro sempre allo scopo di far sembrare che la loro moneta ha più valore di quello che realmente ha. E quindi succede che queste grandi banche centrali occidentali hanno fatto degli accordi con cui, in pratica, la riserva aurea della banca d’Italia è stata magari affittata 2 o 3 volte a entità diverse. Praticamente hanno creato una quantità artificiale di oro sul mercato che in realtà non esiste, per cui quando uno degli operatori chiede la consegna fisica o la restituzione delle riserve come nel caso di Chavez, si crea un po’ di panico.”

Blog: a cosa può portare tutto questo?

M.S. “Un’inflazione della moneta c’è sempre stata, nel senso che le banche centrali hanno sempre barato e questo lo si vede considerando che oggi un dollaro vale 2 centesimi del 1913, quando è entrata in funzione la Federal reserve. Una considerazione simile la possiamo fare anche nei confronti dell’euro tenendo conto del vecchio cambio delle 1.936,27 lire per euro, anche da lì si vede che in realtà… e questa è una considerazione importante: non è vero che i banchieri federali o i banchieri generali siano più prudenti nella gestione della moneta, ed è per questo che avrebbero tolto ai politici la sovranità sull’emissione monetaria perché storicamente loro hanno sempre fatto l’inflazione quindi, la differenza tra… e questo volevo specificarlo perché è un tema abbastanza importante in questo momento anche a livello internazionale, proprio chi esercita la sovranità sul credito e sulla moneta. Ovviamente dare moneta o dare credito a un’iniziativa piuttosto che a un’altra si traduce in soldoni in far politica no? Perché è inutile che noi siamo tutti, per esempio, contro le centrali nucleari visto quello che sta succedendo a Fukushima, quando poi il sistema bancario, autonomamente decide di sponsorizzare l’industria nucleare perché hanno a disposizione prestiti ingentissimi e cose di questo genere. Direi che c’è una presa di coscienza da parte del pubblico di questo rapido e aumento di velocità di perdita di valore della carta sostanzialmente appunto della moneta tipo euro-dollaro e c’è la corsa ad acquistare quei beni che abbiano un valore concreto appunto oro o una valuta come potrebbe essere il franco svizzero piuttosto che immobili… insomma francamente a tradurre in beni concreti i loro risparmi per evitare di disperdere il potere d’acquisto.”

D.M. Ecco sempre che… per paradosso se l’oro dovesse esaurirsi, potremmo pensare che poi l’argento lo possa sostituire come valore? Cioè il bene rifugio non è comunque un bene convenzionale socialmente accettato? E quindi la progressiva povertà e l’aumento di famiglie in difficoltà non potrebbe portare a una sorta di microeconomie che si autolegittimino e si autoriconoscano in una ristretta area geografica e tutto questo possa anche mettere in discussione la sovranità degli Stati stessi?

M.S. “No, allora a proposito del concetto della sovranità, perché tutto il gioco poi funziona così perché quando i banchieri danno – diciamo – i numeri come stanno facendo in questo periodo, se andiamo a vedere la storia vediamo che poi arriva un governo populista e sistema più o meno le cose. In realtà in questa mimica tra il popolo e i banchieri è un po’ una specie di tavolo di poker dove c’è uno che bara che è il banchiere e il popolo che sostanzialmente viene fregato, però poi si arriva a un punto limite in cui il popolo perde assolutamente tutto e il banchiere ha solo 2 possibilità: o finisce il gioco oppure in qualche modo deve trovare il sistema di redistribuire questo denaro perché appunto senno il gioco finisce. Questo sistema ha dei cicli che si ripetono, non è una novità di questo secolo ma è una cosa abbastanza conosciuta nella storia anche se poi fa parte di quel tipo di storia che difficilmente si legge sui giornali perché ovviamente una delle prime cose che hanno fatto i banchieri ai primi del ’900 è stato impadronirsi di tutti gli organi di stampa. Cosa che anche in Italia è avvenuta perché infatti difficilmente sui giornali troviamo una visione economica che sia un po’ più aderente alla realtà. In pratica quello che voglio dire è che oggi le banche hanno un potere tale di poter creare denaro dal nulla tramite false scritture contabili, che dire che una banca è in crisi o che il sistema bancario è in crisi e che lo Stato gli deve dare dei soldi, sarebbe come dire che la Fiat va in crisi e noi gli dobbiamo dare le macchine! ciiè gli unici che possono creare il denaro dal nulla sono le banche stesse.Quindi in realtà il vero problema di questo Paese è che lo Stato e il governo sono complici di questa grande predazione da parte delle banche e non si vedono in questo momento uomini politici che possano prendere in mano la situazione. Quello che può succedere nell’area Euro è semplicemente che uno Stato in default faccia decisioni tipo quelle che ha fatto l’Islanda, cioè ripudiare il debito e eventualmente ritornare a utilizzare una moneta nazionale. Tutto questo che in tutta stampa all’unisono viene descritta come una possibilità tragica, in realtà darebbe al Paese che fa questa scelta un grandissimo vantaggio rispetto a tutti gli altri in quanto poter emettere la propria moneta è un qualcosa che dà un vantaggio competitivo enorme. Infatti lo vediamo in Cina, dove tutte le banche sono nazionalizzate l’emissione della moneta è nazionalizzata ed è semplicemente per questo che la Cina sta vincendo su tutti i mercati mondiali.”

D.M. dunque l’euro non ha più futuro?

M.S. “Appunto, dicevo se uno Stato dell’Europa si accorge del vantaggio competitivo enorme che avrebbe staccandosi dal sistema emettendo una propria moneta, anche gli altri se ne accorgerebbero e quindi naturalmente ci sarebbe una disgregazione dell’area monetaria dell’euro. Secondo me stanno cercando di fare di tutto per evitarlo. Quindi in realtà voglio dire questo: se anche nessuno rispettasse il diktat della banca centrale europea di Francoforte, comunque quella continuerebbe a comprare i titoli di Stato dei Paesi in difficoltà perché altrimenti tutto il gioco finisce. Quindi, in realtà quella famosa lettera che è arrivata qualche giorno fa in cui i banchieri da Francoforte dicevano al governo cosa doveva fare in tema di riduzione di spesa eccetera, in realtà il governo ha deciso di fare come voleva perché intanto il problema della banca centrale europea è un bluff. Se appunto come dicevo prima un Paese esce dall’area euro, praticamente si scatena un effetto domino e i banchieri di Francoforte dovrebbero cercarsi un lavoro onesto.”

D.M. da questo punto di vista cosa prevedi? cioè è più facile che tutti i paesi europei tornino alle loro monete originarie oppure è più facile che ci sia un’insistenza nel mantenere l’euro e questo possa portare a una disgregazione degli Stati?

M.S. “Io penso che comunque il sistema è minato. Penso che per l’Euro la situazione così com’è non possa andare avanti, tra l’altro voglio far presente che il 17 settembre ci sarà in tutto il mondo un’occupazione delle Borse, in Inghilterra nelle sedi della Banca d’Inghilterra, e questa mega manifestazione mondiale ha proprio lo scopo che durerà vari mesi per esempio alla Borsa si New York, dove già vanno con le tende si stanno organizzando, proprio per tirare fuori la verità di come questo sistema sia falso e sia esclusivamente a vantaggio dei banchieri. Quindi io penso che la presa di coscienza su vasta scala grazie ad Internet del meccanismo truffaldino di come funziona il sistema monetario occidentale, che poi è quello che stiamo cercando di ricordare con queste guerre “pacifinte” in Libia Afghanistan eccetera, stanno semplicemente cercando di globalizzare la truffa monetaria e quindi anche per questo troviamo una resistenza molto forte, ovviamente, perché non potriamo la democrazia ma stiamo portando la “bancocrazia” che non piace a nessuno ovviamente. E infatti già nei nostri Paesi si vedono gli effetti. Non è che l’Euro è minato perché ha un brutto nome, semplicemente se cambiassero le regole del sistema di emissione, per esempio dando ad ogni Stato la possibilità di emettere la sua quantità di euro, non dalla banca centrale privata dello Stato ma direttamente dal Ministero del Tesoro, Io dico che se la comunità europea dà la possibiltà di potere emettere la sua quota euro e di spenderli per i lavori pubblici per la ripresa eccetera, allora l’euro potrebbe benissimo avere un gran successo e servire per unificare l’Europa ma appunto dovrebbe cambiare il sistema di emissione attuale.”


Federal Reserve Admits "We Have No Gold"

Federal Reserve Admits "We Have No Gold"

The following exchange between Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) and the Fed's attorney Scott Alvarez proves, without a shadow of a doubt, that The Federal Reserve has no gold backing the US dollar.

Most in the alternative news sphere suspected it - now it's fact.

New Leaks Reveal Insider Tips on S&P's U.S. Credit Downgrade

AUGUST 21, 2011

New Leaks Reveal Insider Tips on S&P's U.S. Credit Downgrade to Killer-Drone Firm



We live in an age where insider deals, conflicts of interest, revolving doors between "regulators" and the "regulated" (lubricated with oceans of cash) accompanies the generalized looting of social wealth by deviant capitalist elites.

That such behavior by our corporate masters no longer raise an eyebrow, let alone elicit action by authorities charged with stopping criminal miscreants destroying other people's lives, is an unmistakable sign that the much-vaunted "free market" system, staring into an abyss of its own creation, has entered a terminal phase.

It now appears that insiders at Standard and Poor's or the Treasury Department, take your pick, may have leaked information to privileged clients on the recent U.S. credit downgrade, with confirmation coming from a surprising source.

Last week, AntiSec cyber-guerrillas (a loose alliance amongst individuals affiliated with LulzSec and Anonymous) released a 1GB cache of emails filched from security contractor Vanguard Defense Industries (VDI).

Previously Anonymous and LulzSec have wrapped their keyboards around defense grifters Booz Allen Hamilton, ManTech International, NATO, the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, InfraGard (a "public-private" security alliance amongst corporate heavy-hitters and the Bureau), the CIA, the Arizona Department of Public Safety, the Arizona Counter Terrorism Information Center (a so-called "fusion center" staffed by cops, federal agents, private contractors and the U.S. military), the Bay Area Rapid Transit agency (BART), Britain's Serious Organised Crime Agency, PBS, Fox News, and repressive governments such as Egypt, Tunisia and Zimbabwe.

Their latest campaign targeted VDI, a Texas-based firm, which specializes in the "development and deployment" of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS, killer drones). VDI "draws on specialized experience of senior aerospace engineers, former military special operations officers, military instructor pilots as well as retired Senior Executive Service Federal Agents," claiming their "background and operational knowledge has afforded us the unique vision to provide a platform that will extend the security and response capabilities of any organization," according to a blurb on their web site.

While VDI touts their ability to offer "support" to the "military, local, state and federal law enforcement as well as the private sector," the firm also offers "a full scope of consulting services independent of our aerial technology."

That "unique vision" however, didn't prevent AntiSec from spiriting away thousands of emails from VDI's Senior Vice President Richard T. Garcia, a former FBI Assistant Director in Los Angeles who recently left a well-paid position as Global Security Manager for the environment-killing Shell Oil Corporation (can you say Niger Delta?) for "greener" pastures.

A press statement from AntiSec announced that the leak "contains internal meeting notes and contracts, schematics, non-disclosure agreements, personal information about other VDI employees, and several dozen 'counter-terrorism' documents classified as 'law enforcement sensitive' and 'for official use only'."

"Vanguard Defense Industries," AntiSec writes, "manufactures unmanned 'ShadowHawk' drones which cost $640,000 and are equipped with grenade launchers and shotguns. ShadowHawks are currently in use by law enforcement, military, and private corporations deploying them in the US, the Horn of Africa, Panama, Columbia [sic], and US-Mexico border patrol operations. These emails contain contracts, schematics, non-disclosure agreements, and more. Additionally we found evidence of a Merrill Lynch wealth management advisor giving private advance notice to Garcia about upcoming S&P US credit rating downgrades."

Improper Disclosures

In an April 25, 2011 email from Garcia to Gloria Newport, Cindy Cook, a Wealth Management Advisor with Bank of America-owned Merrill Lynch "advised that Standard and Poors, may lower the credit rating of the US Government which could cause a run on US Banks that will affect the Federal Reserve. They give the US Govt. 2 years to correct the current situation, which they believe both the Republican and Democratic solutions do not do enough and both parties may make this a political situation for the 2012 Presidential election and never come up with a answer to correct the situation within the two years set by Standard and Poors. She did not see any real Cyber issue that could change the situation."

Investigative journalist Steve Ragan, writing at The Tech Herald(the publication that broke the story on Anonymous's HBGary hack) informs us that "the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission was investigating whether there was any sort of insider trading done by S&P employees before the downgrade was official. The story hinged on comments made to the paper by sources close to the investigation itself."

"On the day S&P cut the U.S.'s credit rating" Ragan writes, "Wall Street was flooded with downgrade rumors. These rumors started earlier in the day while trading was active. It turned out they were true."

According to Bloomberg News the SEC "is scrutinizing the method Standard & Poor's used to cut the U.S.'s credit rating and whether the firm properly protected the confidential decision, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter."

Reporter Joshua Gallu wrote August 14 that SEC staff are "looking into whether certain market participants learned of the downgrade before its announcement."

Downplaying speculation that S&P employees may have breached SEC rules by leaking sensitive information to privileged clients, The New York Times, as is their wont, claimed "it is arguable whether S.&P.'s announcement on Aug. 5 of the rating change was all that confidential, given the speculation about it."

"Assuming information about the downgrade was confidential," the Times pontificates, "it must also be material, which means a reasonable investor would consider it important. This seems to be an easy element to establish because the wild gyrations in the market on the first trading day after the downgrade shows how investors viewed it."

But Cook's email to Garcia didn't arrive in his in-box "on the first trading day after the downgrade" but nearly four months earlier, long before July's political shenanigans over raising the federal debt ceiling, the ostensible reason why S&P downgraded America's credit worthiness.

Maxine Waters (D-CA), wrote to SEC chairwoman, cover-up specialist Mary Schapiro, demanding that the commission "conduct an investigation into whether S.&P. selectively disclosed information related to the U.S. government debt downgrade to any financial institutions, and whether any institutions that had that nonpublic information traded on that information prior to the official announcement."

It appears that Cook's email to Garcia would confirm that S&P insiders did just that, providing information to Merrill Lynch and one can assume other financial firms.

Throwing cold water on charges that the rating's agency acted improperly, the Times argues that "even if if the S.E.C. finds that the information was improperly disclosed, proving insider trading will be difficult."

Why might that be?

According to the Times, "while S.&P. and other credit rating agencies are required to adopt policies to prevent such disclosure, it is questionable whether just leaking information violates any federal regulations, even if it breaches a corporate confidentiality policy."

Lest readers believe however, that the SEC will mount a comprehensive investigation of leaks by S&P insiders, they would do well to read Matt Taibbi's latest piece for Rolling Stone.

According to congressional testimony by an SEC whistleblower, which sparked an investigation by that agency's Inspector General, the commission's enforcement division, under orders from higher-ups, who went on to secure well-paid positions with the firms they were charged to regulate, shredded a mountain of incriminating evidence detailing wrongdoing by some of the world's top financial firms.

How many files, called "Matters Under Investigation" or MUI were destroyed? According to whistleblower Darcy Flynn, the SEC's enforcement division "disappeared" some 18,000 files, including those of convicted fraudster Bernie Madoff, accused swindler, suspected CIA banker and drug money launderer R. Allen Stanford, as well as accusations that top-tier Wall Street investment banks such as J.P. Morgan Chase had engaged in insider trading.

Taibbi writes that "under a deal the SEC worked out with the National Archives and Records Administration, all of the agency's records--'including case files relating to preliminary investigations'--are supposed to be maintained for at least 25 years. But the SEC, using history-altering practices that for once actually deserve the overused and usually hysterical term 'Orwellian,' devised an elaborate and possibly illegal system under which staffers were directed to dispose of the documents from any preliminary inquiry that did not receive approval from senior staff to become a full-blown, formal investigation."

It's a nice deal if you can get it, which of course firms like Goldman Sachs, J. P. Morgan Chase, Deutsche Bank, AIG and Lehman Brothers (before their 2008 collapse) managed to get in spades.

"We'll never know," Taibbi avers, "what the impact of those destroyed cases might have been; we'll never know if those cases were closed for good reasons or bad. We'll never know exactly who got away with what, because federal regulators have weighted down a huge sack of Wall Street's dirty laundry and dumped it in a lake, never to be seen again."

In this light, AntiSec's hack of VDI is instructive. If for nothing else, it demonstrates that well-connected insiders reap billions from the collapse of the global economy, divvying-up the spoils amongst privileged friends and clients, including those inhabiting the nethermost regions of the secret state.

Cyberwar: Bringing it All Back Home, and Waging War on the Global Economy

As global elites scramble to seize as much advantage as possible over their rivals as the economy craters, intelligence methods deployed as part of imperialism's endless "War on Terror" have migrated with a vengeance onto Wall Street.

Revelations by Anonymous earlier this year that a passel of Pentagon-linked security contractors had joined forces to run covert ops on whistleblowers and journalists set alarm bells ringing.

February's release of some 75,000 emails filched from servers controlled by security grifters HBGary Federal and HBGary, uncovered a sordid scheme by the Bank of American and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to target supporters of WikiLeaks and left-wing corporate critics.

That hack, in addition to exposing BofA's illicit "Team Themis"gambit, a co-production of white shoe law firm Hunton & Williams, HBGary Federal, HBGary, Palantir Technologies (a recipient of CIA slush funds from its venture capital arm In-Q-Tel) and Berico Technologies, also revealed that the Pentagon and giant defense contractors such as General Dynamics had teamed up with HBGary to develop undetectable malware or "rootkits" for America's emerging Cyberwar-Intelligence Complex, according to a series of documents published by the secrecy-shredding web site Public Intelligence.

Additional files revealed that HBGary and ManTech International had partnered-up with the National Security State for what they described as "Internet Based Reconnaissance Operations" that use "non-attributable internet access" methodologies (approvedhacking by the secret state) for "operating system and network application identification," "identification of possible perimeter defense" for "intelligence gap fill" and "counterintelligence research." In other words, broad based internet spying on an array of "adversaries" (e.g., political dissidents, antiwar activists, anticorporate campaigners and other enemies of the state).

Further research by Project PM's OpMetalGear revealed that defense giant Northrop Grumman and other firms such as HBGary Federal, TASC and ManTech International were engaged in a bidding war to spear the Pentagon's Romas/COIN program (since renamed Odyssey).

That program, researcher Barrett Brown writes, is "a secretive and immensely sophisticated campaign of mass surveillance and data mining against the Arab world, allowing the intelligence community to monitor the habits, conversations, and activity of millions of individuals at once." (For additional background see: "Security Grifters Partner-Up on Sinister Cyber-Surveillance Project," Antifascist Calling, July 3, 2011)

We can assume that once intelligence sources and methods intended to target external enemies are turned inward and attack the American people, financial insiders too, would find such tools an exemplary means to crush their competitors and adversaries, the global working class.

Bankrupting and Criminalizing the State

"Economic warfare," economist and researcher Michel Chossudovsky, writing in The Global Economic Crisis: The Great Depression of the XXI Century, "consists in destabilizing countries and impoverishing their respective populations."

Chossudovsky argues that "the manipulation of market forces through the imposition of strong 'economic medicine' under the helm of the IMF supports U.S.-NATO strategic and geopolitical objectives."

Similarly," Chossudovsky observes, "the speculative attacks waged by powerful banking conglomerates in the currency, commodity and stock markets are acts of financial warfare," one in which the "financing of an oversized U.S. war economy triggers imbalances in the U.S. monetary system, destabilizes the U.S. fiscal structure and creates imbalances in the allocation of human and material resources."

This tragedy is playing out today. The on-going market meltdown in the wake of the U.S. credit downgrade and the crisis in the Eurozone has affected tens of millions of workers who saw their retirement funds gobbled up by speculators. Additionally, states and municipalities "carrying debt tied to federal creditworthiness," The Tech Herald avers, "each took a hit."

Hard hit cities and states struggling under an enormous debt burden due to falling revenues, are held hostage by the credit rating agencies. As economist Michael Hudson points out inGlobal Research credit rating agencies such as Standard and Poor's, Moody's and Fitch "are playing the political role of 'enforcer' as the gatekeepers to credit, to put pressure on Iceland, Greece and even the United States to pursue creditor-oriented policies that lead inevitably to financial crises."

Hudson writes that these "crises in turn force debtor governments to sell off their assets under distress conditions. In pursuing this guard-dog service to the world's bankers, the ratings agencies are escalating a political strategy they have long been refined over a generation in the corrupt arena of local U.S. politics."

As the World Socialist Web Site observes, "the crisis of the world's stock exchanges and financial markets is increasingly spiraling out of control. Governments are being driven by developments which they are unable to influence."

Socialist critic Peter Schwarz notes that "the panic on the stock markets shows that traders are expecting a deep recession, already heralded by stagnating growth and rising unemployment rates," and that "corporations will respond with new waves of layoffs, governments with further budget cuts."

In a climate stoked by fear, war and those all-purpose boogeymen, "debt," "terror" and now, "cyberwar," the cost of bailing-out a looted capitalist economy are shouldered by the working class. These pressures in turn increase the downward spiral as employment, wages, manufacturing and consumer spending go into a tail-spin, a self-destructive feed-back loop that further exacerbates levels of unemployment, home foreclosures and generalized misery. The tentacles of this manufactured "debt crisis" reach everywhere--from the smallest town to the largest city.

Hudson avers that "localities are pressured when their rising debt levels lead to a financial stringency. Banks pull back their credit lines, and urge cities and states to pay down their debts by selling off their most viable public enterprises."

And waiting in the wings are a new class of corporate vultures and rentier vampires who swoop down to reap the rewards gleaned by gobbling-up (looting) public assets at fire sale prices.

The rating agencies who profit at both ends of any transaction according to Hudson, "offer opinions" that have become a "big business" for the agencies. "So it is understandable why their business model opposes policies--and political candidates--that support the idea of basing public financing on taxation rather than by borrowing. This self-interest colors their 'opinions'."

Accordingly, "to acquiescence in such economically destructive financial behavior is the opposite of fiscal responsibility. Cutting federal taxes and Social Security payments to obtain a more positive S&P 'opinion," Hudson writes, "would give banks an ability to 'pull the plug' and force privatization and anti-labor austerity plans by refraining from rolling over the U.S. debt--and cutting taxes Tea-Party style rather than funding spending by taxation on a pay-as-you-go-basis."

In this light, one can certainly understand why a Merrill Lynch "wealth management advisor" would offer her "knowledgeable judgement" (clubby insider info) to a dodgy security outfit such as VDI.

Working classes across Europe have not "gone gently into the night" of impoverishment; the great fear here in the heimatamongst corporatists and militarists alike, is that once working people realize the game is up they just might impose some "shock therapy" of their own!

As Salon columnist Glenn Greenwald (a target of "Team Themis's" dirty tricks campaign) avers, speaking out about "the sprawling Surveillance State and the attempted criminalization of WikiLeaks and whistleblowing are so vital" to the defense of democracy.

"The free flow of information and communications enabled by new technologies--as protest movements in the Middle East and a wave of serious leaks over the last year have demonstrated--is a uniquely potent weapon in challenging entrenched government power and other powerful factions," Greenwald writes.

"And that is precisely why those in power--those devoted to preservation of the prevailing social order--are so increasingly fixated on seizing control of it and snuffing out its potential for subverting that order: they are well aware of, and are petrified by, its power, and want to ensure that the ability to dictate how it is used, and toward what ends, remains exclusively in their hands."

This is why actions by disparate groups such as AntiSec, Anonymous and WikiLeaks are informational beacons in an otherwise homogenized media landscape, one characterized by celebrity gossip, sex scandals and "crimes" carried out by poor and marginalized populations--never the filthy rich or the warmongers who murder millions as they launch resource wars that steal other people's social property.

While firms such as VDI, Boeing, General Atomics and Lockheed Martin hawk drone technologies that transform human beings into red mist, and do so as their "patriotic" (and highly-profitable) duty as the Pentagon wholeheartedly embraces hypermodern forms of robotized mass murder, the bill for American hubris, long past due, is coming faster than most people think.