Posts Tagged ‘Krugman’

Great Cities A Must, So Tax Superrich Hard, Everywhere.

December 2, 2015

Shallowness of thinking is a sin. Many view it as a creature’s comfort., though (“Thus spoke the Tyranosopher”). OK, not a sin in the Bible (otherwise the Bible would have put itself out of business!). But it’s a dangerous consequence, and temptation from the Internet and “multitasking”. For shallow thinking one of my reference is Paul Krugman, the most respected “liberal” (USA) or “progressive” (anywhere else) in America and Europe.

Krugman wrote “Inequality and the City” an editorial, where he depicted the success of New York, and pointed, all too moderately, and somewhat disingenuously to its features. Here he goes, with a striking disinformation hook at the end:

“New York, New York, a helluva town. The rents are up, but the crime rate is down. The food is better than ever, and the cultural scene is vibrant. Truly, it’s a golden age for the town I recently moved to — if you can afford the housing. But more and more people can’t.

Rich Gets Into More Expensive Housing, Low Lives Sleep Outside

Rich Gets Into More Expensive Housing, Low Lives Sleep Outside

And it’s not just New York. The days when dystopian images of urban decline were pervasive in popular culture — remember the movie “Escape from New York”? — are long past. The story for many of our iconic cities is, instead, one of gentrification, a process that’s obvious to the naked eye, and increasingly visible in the data.

Specifically, urban America reached an inflection point around 15 years ago: after decades of decline, central cities began getting richer, more educated, and, yes, whiter. Today our urban cores are providing ever more amenities, but largely to a very affluent minority.

But why is this happening? And is there any way to spread the benefits of our urban renaissance more widely?

Let’s start by admitting that one important factor has surely been the dramatic decline in crime rates. For those of us who remember the 1970s, New York in 2015 is so safe it’s surreal. And the truth is that nobody really knows why that happened.”

Did he really say that? “Nobody really knows why” New York became safer? Really? Never heard of Mayor Giuliani? (Giuliani was several times presidential candidate.) He was tough on crime, strong on “profiling”.

The USA has the highest incarceration rate in the world (with the Seychelles islands). Eight million people are under justice supervision. Police brutality helped. This may be why nobody Politically Correct knows why New York is so much safer; nobody wants to know why. Hard thinking is always uncomfortable.

As soon as plenty of police brutality videos surfaced, and the police was reined in, crime rates exploded. That was in 2015. That is, a few months ago.

Paul Krugman does not want to praise the virtues of daily fascism as far as direct repression is concerned. Not PC. However, he dares to be a little bit, very delicately, NON PC:

“But there have been other drivers of the change: above all, the national-level surge in inequality.

It’s a familiar fact (even if the usual suspects still deny it) that the concentration of income in the hands of a small minority has soared over the past 35 years. This concentration is even higher in big metropolitan areas like New York, because those areas are both where high-skill, high-pay industries tend to locate, and where the very affluent often want to live. In general, this high-income elite gets what it wants, and what it has wanted, since 2000, has been to live near the center of big cities.”

I already mentioned this: the new young elite is less dumb and wasteful that the one which preceded it. Krugman, correctly playing psychologist:

“Still, why do high-income Americans now want to live in inner cities, as opposed to in sprawling suburban estates? Here we need to pay attention to the changing lives of the affluent — in particular, their work habits.

To get a sense of how it used to be, let me quote from a classic 1955 Fortune article titled “How Top Executives Live.” According to that article, the typical executive “gets up early — about 7 a.m.. — eats a large breakfast, and rushes to his office by train or auto. It is not unusual for him, after spending from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. in his office, to hurry home, eat dinner, and crawl into bed with a briefcase full of homework.” Well, by the standards of today’s business elite, that’s actually a very relaxed lifestyle.

And as several recent papers have argued, the modern high earner, with his or her long hours — and, more often than not, a working partner rather than a stay-at-home wife — is willing to pay a lot more than the executives of yore for a central location that cuts commuting time. Hence gentrification. And this is a process that feeds on itself: as more high earners move into urban centers, these centers begin offering amenities: — restaurants, shopping, entertainment — that make them even more attractive.”

Notice Krugman does not mention the Darkest Side: having the rich living only among the rich… Let alone correctly colored. I have observed this many times: entire neighborhoods, cities, islands, secluded enclaves of the 1%.

On this Krugman is a bit naive:

“We’re not just talking about the superrich here, or even the 1 percent. At a guess, we might be talking about the top 10 percent. And for these people, it’s a happy story. But what about all the people, surely a large majority, who are being priced out of America’s urban revival? Does it have to be that way?

The answer, surely, is no, at least not to the extent we’re seeing now. Rising demand for urban living by the elite could be met largely by increasing supply. There’s still room to build, even in New York, especially upward. Yet while there is something of a building boom in the city, it’s far smaller than the soaring prices warrant, mainly because land use restrictions are in the way.”

It is true that land use restrictions are a huge problem (in the San Francisco Bay Area, cities which want to build skyscrapers next to train stations, have been blocked… Mostly by the superrich, who do not want the poor, mediocre and thoroughly medium to rise up in the sky. The result has been the greatest gridlock in the USA).

Here is how Krugman concludes: “But will that understanding lead to any action? That’s a subject I’ll have to return to another day. For now, let’s just say that in this age of gentrification, housing policy has become much more important than most people realize.”

Trust Krugman to be as hard as a soft-boiled egg. Krugman, or why moderation is a sin. All what Krugman said was true, but it is “non-controversial“, namely everybody knew it already. Is that what the top thinking on the left can be? With moderates like that, who needs Republicans?

Something Krugman does not say:

NO HIGH TAXES ON SUPERRICH, NO GOOD CITIES:

Housing policy, thus the built-up of infrastructure, is crucial for the economy… and for comfort: infrastructure deteriorates, and has to be worked on continuously. Let alone modernized.

Private infrastructure in a city, depends upon PUBLIC infrastructure (water, electricity, basic transportation, basic police, justice, schools, government).. Thus, because of the necessary involvement of public infrastructure, PRIVATE infrastructure requires more PUBLIC spending.

Hence a thriving PRIVATE economy requires more PUBLIC economy, hence more taxes on the wealthy (Canada’s Trudeau, the new PM, advocates just this).

An example is schools: they can be made profitable, thus private, as long as they cater to the top 10% To cater to everybody, thus make a sustainable city, taxes will have to be augmented and redistributed to public schools. So sustainable cities will require a change in the philosophy of the socio-economy.

Ah, something else: taxes cannot just be restricted to the cities, as then the superrich will escape again. So they have to be national. And even international. And “Dark Pools”, “Shadow Banking”, Tax Havens, Delaware, have to disappear.

Building thriving cities is about not destroying the planet: cities are more efficient. Most of humanity lives now in cities, and the proportion will have to go up.

Don’t trust the superrich, don’t let them call themselves “philanthropists”, as if they could tax themselves. Latest clown here is the Facebook founder, who got free advertising everywhere, for his pledge to “give 99% of his fortune away“. Meanwhile he will keep on enjoying it, while claiming he does not, before he can convert it into tax-free vehicle, for himself, his wife, and child, Bill Gates’ style. It is rather sad to see so many applauding some clowns whom I do not find funny.

Politics is named after cities, so is civilization. Cities can, and will have, to save the biosphere, as they can be made more efficient, and smarter, than any alternative. And what is cities’ greatest historical enemy? Plutocracy.

One must crush infamy, and thus plutocracy, and it’s exactly why taxes were (mostly) invented.

Patrice Ayme’

Hope At Last?

September 14, 2015

The 99% were told that they were culprit of the ways of high finance. The 99% were told that, they profited from the financial crisis, and had to be restrained with “austerity” (now that all the money had to go to the bankers and other richest people in the world, to save those towering pillars of society from ruin under which we would otherwise be crushed).

That the 99% were culprit of the high leverage of the financial system, thanks to heavy “investing” in financial derivatives such as Credit Default Swaps, was an absurdity: most people had no idea, and still have no idea, that much money creation by bankers, head that way, towards planet finance, instead of planet Earth.

Men Of Wealth, Taste, Power & "Three Minutes" Women

Men Of Wealth, Taste, Power & “Three Minutes” Women

Austerity, the claim that the 99% were too rich, and that this caused the crisis, after thirty years of “Trickle Down”, was, of course, insane. And therefore well received. The appropriate punishment was to insure that the richest would have the means to stay rich, and massive transfers of wealth to the richest people were implemented (even in Greece, where, last I checked, ship magnates were still not taxed!)

With the bleakest sense of humor, this Transfer of Assets to the Richest People TARP), was called… “TARP”, because it was the ultimate cover-up.

However, the economy has not recovered. So insane the gap between sacrifice and result, propaganda and observation, that even average voters are becoming suspicious.

In Spite Of Gigantic Sacrifices & Unemployment, "Austerity", Spain GDP Not Recovering

In Spite Of Gigantic Sacrifices & Unemployment, “Austerity”, Spain GDP Not Recovering

[I exhibited Spain’s GDP, but it’s typical. Lest some hysterical Germanophile comes up screaming that Germany is doing well, let me point out that Germany grew not at all in the last decade, averaging… one third of one percent yearly, which is only compatible with a population decrease, as observed… Thus Europe is literally dying from austerity.]

To accuse the 99% of the violations plutocrats engaged in, and only them can, is becoming so egregious, that even political leaders on the pseudo-left, like the followers of Blair in British Labor, find difficult to hold that discourse nowadays, with a straight face.

So here we are. The pyramid of lies on how the economy works, by self serving politicians in bed with the richest people in the world, is starting to collapse. Worldwide, voters are starting to have their own opinions, and feel that they were lied to, at a nearly inconceivable scale. Voters don’t just repeat anymore what the media owned by the richest people in the world have told them to think. Maybe there is hope after all.

Jeremy Corbyn, a long-time leftist dissident, just won a stunning victory for leadership of Britain’s Labour Party. In an excellent editorial, Paul Krugman  Labour’s Dead Center observes that:

…”one crucial piece of background to the Corbyn surge: the implosion of Labour’s moderates. On economic policy, in particular, the striking thing about the leadership contest was that every candidate other than Mr. Corbyn essentially supported the Conservative government’s austerity policies.

Worse, they all implicitly accepted the bogus justification for those policies, in effect pleading guilty to policy crimes that Labour did not, in fact, commit. If you want a U.S. analogy, it’s as if all the leading candidates for the Democratic nomination in 2004 had gone around declaring, “We were weak on national security, and 9/11 was our fault.” Would we have been surprised if Democratic primary voters had turned to a candidate who rejected that canard, whatever other views he or she held?

In the British case, the false accusations against Labour involve fiscal policy, specifically claims that the Labour governments that ruled Britain from 1997 to 2010 spent far beyond their means, creating a deficit and debt crisis that caused the broader economic crisis. The fiscal crisis, in turn, supposedly left no alternative to severe cuts in spending, especially spending that helps the poor.

These claims have, one must admit, been picked up and echoed by almost all British news media. It’s not just that the media have failed to subject Conservative claims to hard scrutiny, they have reported them as facts. It has been an amazing thing to watch — because every piece of this conventional narrative is completely false.

Was the last Labour government fiscally irresponsible? Britain had a modest budget deficit on the eve of the economic crisis of 2008, but as a share of G.D.P. it wasn’t very high – about the same, as it turns out, as the U.S. budget deficit at the same time. British government debt was lower, as a share of G.D.P., than it had been when Labour took office a decade earlier, and was lower than in any other major advanced economy except Canada.”

The question boils down on why do people think what they do. Well, they think what they have been told to think. Krugman:

“…the supposed fiscal crisis never created any actual economic problem… there was never any need for a sharp turn to austerity.

In short, the whole narrative about Labour’s culpability for the economic crisis and the urgency of austerity is nonsense. But it is nonsense that was consistently reported by British media as fact. And all of Mr. Corbyn’s rivals for Labour leadership bought fully into that conventional nonsense, in effect accepting the Conservative case that their party did a terrible job of managing the economy, which simply isn’t true.”

Why do people do what they do? Well, most people basically try to survive honorably. However those with political aspirations are different. After all, they want to make a job of ruling us. Thirst for power is therefore, one may suspect, a prime motivation of theirs. And then the question is what do they believe they can get away with, on their royal road to domination? And what will be their justification for domination, which they will cover-up their thirst for power with?

Enter plutocratization, the general mood that the few, urged by the most basic instincts of domination, doing better than the many, is the best social organization for everybody. This “trickle down” theory has led the middle class down the road of increasing pauperization, even while global GDP was rising. Plutocratic media monopoly has insured that this mood became a modern religion.

Thatcher and Reagan were the modern instigators of plutocratization. Ex-British PM Tony Blair is a spectacular success of official corruption. Corruption by officials, of officials.  Blair helped to demolish Iraq to please oil barons (and American plutocrats). Blair sells his services to whoever it is most advantageous to sell them to. Piling up income from the likes of the dictator of Kazakhstan, he gathered in excess of 100 million dollars.

By now the middle class is starting to feel they were had by plutocratization. Methods of massive exploitation had to be changed. Enter the 2008 financial crisis. The “rescue” consisted in sending giant amount of money to banks and their managers. “Trickle Down” theory changed its face to “austerity”. The 99% were told that they were culprit of the 2008 crisis, they had to be punished. Completely brainwashed as they were, they welcomed their punishment.

Krugman: “Beyond that, however, Labour’s political establishment seems to lack all conviction, for reasons I don’t fully understand. And this means that the Corbyn upset isn’t about a sudden left turn on the part of Labour supporters. It’s mainly about the strange, sad moral and intellectual collapse of Labour moderates.”

In much of Western  society, in the last 35 years, political leaders got to power by undermining civilization, and Western democracy. They have been well paid for that: watch the fortunes past leaders have made, such as Major, Blair, Clinton, Gore, Chirac, and, of course, their families: Chelsea Clinton is very rich, but so are the brothers of past French presidents, although Chirac is worth only $10 million, roughly a tenth (Blair, Clintons) or a hundredth (Feinstein, Pelosi, Gore) of Anglo-Saxon politicians worth. Still remarkable, for someone such as Chirac, who was only an elected official all his life (in the USA, Reid of Nevada, head of democrats in the Senate, has a similar fortune and history; that brought charges of corruption, quickly silenced).

The British press is held by plutocrats, some Australian heirs (Murdoch, son and father of Murdochs), some even Russian “oligarchs”. This is where thinking has been coming from. And the charade will go on, until We The People think on their own. How soon? Can one think freely in a Mafia State? Certainly not in Russia. What about Britain? George Monbiot argues that Britain is also a Mafia State. Considering my personal experiences, I can only agree. Dawn is the coldest hour.

Patrice Ayme’

Wisdom Not An Itch, But Economy Hitching Dark Side, A Gangrene

September 13, 2015

Is Philosophy Just An Itch? Far from it. Even if it were, as Wittgenstein had it:

“Philosophy hasn’t made any progress? – If somebody scratches the spot where he has an itch, do we have to see some progress? Isn’t genuine scratching otherwise, or genuine itching? And can’t this reaction to an irritation continue in the same way for a long time before a cure for the itching is discovered?”

It is not true that philosophy asks always only the same questions, and it is not true that philosophy has not progressed in 3,000 years.

Instead the opposite is true. contemporary with Socrates was Xenophon, who named and defined “Economics”. Xenophon was student and friend to Socrates, a writer, historian, soldier, general, and retired as a horse breeder.

Krugman Is A Philosopher, He Rules World. But Who Pulls His Strings?

Krugman Is A Philosopher, He Rules World. But Who Pulls His Strings?

[Paul Krugman, appropriately surrounded by the Dark Sides.]

Paul Krugman is one of the world’s most respected – and most feared – economists of our time. Illustration by David Simmonds.” –Handelsblatt which adds: “Many think the U.S. Nobel Prize winner is the most influential economist of our time and a leading voice on the left. But many of his major ideas are controversial. And rightly so.”

Those familiar with my disagreements with Krugman know that we differ philosophically. Our differences are mostly about finance, banking… And especially believing that, if only bankers had even more money, through Quantitative Easing, the world would become richer, fairer, and more comfortable. That is anathema to me, for many reasons, including the fact I do not trust too much power in too few hands, whatever the reasons evoked, or even if one calls these people, bankers, and Obama admires them very much.

Philosophy named and defined much progress.

Behind all and any empire is an economic organization backed up by a philosophy. Darius, founder of the Achaemenid Persian empire, changed economic organizations very quickly, according to circumstances, , from military to command and control, to building the world’s first fast road system, to libertarian capitalism.

It is possible to argue that the Greco-Roman empire failed, because it failed PHILOSOPHICALLY. Namely, its philosophy failed. It failed because the (Macedonian) military leaders got imprinted on the erroneous, despicable, and lethal philosophy of their friend Aristotle, itself all too inspired by Plato, Socrates, and other golden youth, or their fellow travellers.

One can view the Middle Ages greatly as a struggle against much of Aristotelian philosophy: not just against Aristotle’s physics, which was egregiously wrong, but also against his Ethics and his, related, preferred theory of government. Aristotle embraced dictatorship, also known as monarchy, hence theocracy.

In Socrates’ times, democratic institutions were, in many ways, brutally primitive and inappropriate for sustaining the Athenian Republic. These brought not just the death of Socrates, but were decisive to bring the defeat of Athens in the Peloponnesian war (which nearly brought the annihilation of Athens, and certainly an eclipse of democracy for more than 2,000 years). The People’s Assembly had decided to massacre entire populations (Melos), and brought hatred against Athens.

Much of Socrates’ work was about improving the Athenian democracy, and many of the philosopher’s critiques were addressed during the Middle Ages, by inventing new institutions.

So there has been progress in philosophy, and also considerable social and political progress in implementing progress in wisdom.

We need more. Behind Krugman’s vision of the world, lays a benign, naive trust in human beings benevolence. At least, that’s the excuse.

Friends, Not To Say Lovers Of The Same Values. How Far Are We?

Friends, Not To Say Lovers Of The Same Values. How Far Are We?

Instead, I go further than “French Theory“. French Theory, generalizing Nietzsche’s approach, is suspicious of all and any institutions. I propose to remember what the Marquis De Sade implicitly proposed: those who take, those who are entitled, those end up being able to take decisions on behalf of the many, are, intrinsically, moved by the Darkest Side. Even if they did not start this way, the stress they are subjected to, insures that they end up that way.

Yes, Krugman is a philosopher, in the sense that his work, and advice, and popularity among, thus, power on, the mighty, depends upon his philosophical positions. Yet philosophers to the Dark Side, by their very presence where they are, embrace it.

This is not all just words. I love and respect Paul Krugman. in some ways. However, contemplate this: “Enron, a notorious corporation which conspired in organizing energy shortages in California, later to collapse in scandal and bankruptcy, employed Krugman. Paul’s fee? $37,000 for three days work. It provoked outrage. Wasn’t this excessive?. Mr. Krugman used his column to respond: not at all, he wrote. At the time his fee for a one-hour talk was $20,000. Enron got a deal.”

And the worst? Paul Krugman is very small fry, in the plutocratic world, as far as income is concerned. Donald Trump recently pointed out he “knew hedge fund managers. They pay no tax.” And some of those earn billions. General Electric got (60) billion dollars from the Obama administration, paid no tax for years, and then proceed to buy its French competitor, Alstom. Even the European Commission found that not kosher (although the plausibly secretly compensated by huff and fluff ,French government had approved).

Krugman at some point proclaimed himself the “lonely voice of truth in a sea of corruption”. The worst? It’s true. Because Krugman had dared to say the Obama administration was soft on punishing Wall Street after the 2008 corruption affair (the so-called “crash”), he was not invited to participate in said administration of the useless and redundant (as plutocrats connected to the so-called “Deep State” take all the decisions).

Handelsblatt: “Somehow Mr. Krugman’s fury keeps on growing. The source of this anger may be the man’s greatest enigma, since in fact worldwide there has never been as much Keynesian intervention as there is today…”

The answer to this, Handelsblatt, is simple: the crisis is getting ever worse. To the point the spectrum of war is rising. Even the Pope, noticed this.

Handelsblatt: “Since the crisis began, the largest central banks have flooded the world economy with liquidity, and brought their base rates close to zero. The governments of the industrialized world, with the exception of Germany, are still running huge budget deficits. They have put together enormous rescue packages, partly to rescue the banks, partly to bail out bankrupt states, partly to invest in infrastructure.”

Well, and this is my main difference with Krugman, rescue packages were all about the (“PRIVATE”) banks, and they bankrupt(ed) the states. To correct this, the entire banking system needs to be completely overhauled. In first approximation, the spirit of the reforms of president Roosevelt, ought to be re-introduced.

In Great Britain Jeremy Corbin, an anti-dictatorial (anti-monarchist) was elected to head Labor. Tony Blair, one of the world’s most corrupt politicians, ever (Bliar gets money from various dictator, including that of Kazakhstan) suggested that: “those who say their hearts are with leftwinger Jeremy Corbyn should ‘get a transplant’.

Darius, like the Incas, like Diocletian’s Rome, or the Tang in China, or the empire of the Franks (which mutated into the “West”), or Themistocles Athens, let alone Stalin’s USSR, or today’s China, let alone the mercantilist USA, show that the primary actor, and author, of the economy is not the little capitalist, but the massive state. Handelsblatt claims not to understand this, and calls Krugman a fool.

However, the USA’s government institution revealingly known as the “Fed”, created more than 13 trillions (yes, that’s a t: trillion) dollars of money to inject in the economy, and the European Union, less than two trillion. And yes, that’s a problem: too much money chasing too few investment possibilities. So what ought government to do? Create more investment possibilities. Titanic investment program. As Darius did with his Royal road network. Now the Royal Road ought to lead to Mars. And the Quantum Computer. And Thermonuclear Fusion. And the Space Elevator. And a research program to fight aging (a major economic, not just military problem). Those who don’t want progress get regress, not to say egress.

Imagination, ladies and gentlemen, is more important than austerity, and not just in economics.

Patrice Ayme’

Puerto Rico’s Default: Back To The 1930s?

August 5, 2015

We were told, for years, the outrageous lie that Greece’s debt crisis was “caused” by the Euro… Even by supposedly left wing economists of the USA (Paul Krugman, etc.), and their European parrots. I exposed this as a cover-up of the outrageous state of banking under a thick layer of Europhobia, even more than four years ago. Now Puerto Rico exhibits an increasing unwillingness to pay interest on its debt. Now what?

Puerto Rico’s Default Has Got To Be Europe’s Fault:

It’s only a matter of time before the plutocratic press, or, if you want, the Main Stream Media, make the Euro and Greece the reason for Puerto Rico’s failure. (For such a devious reasoning, see below.)

After 2008, the economy turned bad, and governments borrowed heavily to keep the society going. As the prospects got dimmer, https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/06/21/new-york-vulture-justice/, bought Puerto Rican debt. Vultures hate education, as education makes for rebels, and they are in position to reduce educational spending, in Greece or Puerto Rico. When Vulture Funds had their fill, of Puerto Rican debt, they sprang the trap: mistaking Porto Rico for Greece, they required the Porto Rican government to reduce spending in education… So that Porto Rico could pay them the extravagant interest payments.

Is Puerto Rico The Object Of A (Financial Engineered) Genocide?

Is Puerto Rico The Object Of A (Financial Engineered) Genocide?

Debating Puerto Rican debt appears to be about finance, state debt, schools, hedge funds. Yet, ultimately, it’s about who owns Puerto Rico.

The Guardian, and magazine such as Slate, bought the hedge fund propaganda, bait, hook, line, sinker, if not the boat itself. Jordan Weissmann in Slate, a famous electronic magazine, blared: Hedge Funds Think Puerto Rico Should Shut Down Schools to Pay Its Debts. Is That So Wrong?

No, of course, it’s right. Hedge Funds should have all rights you can possibly imagine. They already buy and sell entire countries.

***

The Truth About Porto-Rico: Tax Haven, Millionaires’ Haven:

The total tax receipt in Puerto Rico is 10%, a small fraction of what it is in advanced countries (at least 23%). Taxes on the rich are small, full of loopholes. Moreover, the USA treats Puerto Rico like an exploited colony, so full reimbursements and compensations available to full citizens of the USA are not available in Puerto Rico.

Another truth is that educational spending is exploding in the USA, because health spending (Obamacare”) does not control costs (contrarily to what propaganda says). So plutocrats from hedge funds profit from an inflation which fellow plutocrats in health care engineered, thanks to an arguably too Machiavellian by half White House.

Porto Rico is a weird island, a territory of the USA which is neither destined to independence, nor a state. In the 1950s, four Puerto Ricans went to the Congress of the USA, and shot 30 rounds onto the Representatives, to ask for independence.

Krugman says Puerto Rico is not Greece: indeed, Puerto Ricans flee massively to the USA. Greeks no doubt ought to do the same and contribute free, or menial labor, to the splendor of the economy as celebrate by Krugman. People who are in the know stridently contradicted Paul Krugman’s positions and exposed them for what they are: the term “neo-colonialism” is too good. Pursued to the end, Puerto Rico would just vanish, except as a tax haven (just as the Virgin Islands next door).

***

Mussolini Fustigated What He Called “Demoplutocracies”:

Hitler joined the Italian dictator in complaining about the “plutocrats”… whom he knew all too well (top Nazis commiserated with him for having to dine with “plutocrats”, and make small talk to “plutocrats“, etc.)  

Does that mean that those who complain about “plutocracy” a lot, such as yours truly, are also fascist?

No. Of course not. First it shows that Mussolini and Hitler called their dinner guests “plutocrats” because that’s what they, all often, were. It also reveals that, in the 1930s, it was a common political truth, worldwide, that plutocrats had caused the financial and economic crisis… As they had, since they were in command (the bubble of the 1920s was deliberately engineered by Lord Montague and his American alter ego, to mitigate British debt from World War One by inflation and over-activity).

***

President Roosevelt, Knight Of The Dark Side:

People often ask me what the Dark Side is. Neither “Evil“, nor “Star Wars” do justice to the notion. That force is strong, but its strength varies. The politician who acted the best, for his own country, when faced with that plutocratic crisis, was President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Roosevelt devalued the dollar, shackled Wall Street and the banks, created a Command and Control economy (headed by a young Canadian!). Roosevelt, himself a plutocrat, behaved in an extremely progressive, socialist way. Because he had to. Sometimes, the Dark Side is all about doing what is necessary (I see Obama chuckling in the distance with his drones). Embracing many of the solutions of the hard left, was the price Roosevelt paid to save plutocracy.

Maybe to compensate, for his own exuberant socialism, Roosevelt was abusive with the French (who still adore him), and exploitative with the British. He also helped making sure that Stalin, Hitler and Mussolini could devastate Europe… To the great profit of the USA. In 1939, or early 1940, Roosevelt could have declared war to Hitler. That would have probably made him win re-election in November 1940 in a landslide.

Roosevelt ran for an unprecedented Third Term. President Washington had refused to do so; Roosevelt was not obligated to run for an unprecedented third term. But he was morally, civilizationally, and strategically obligated to declare war to Nazism. FDR never did: Hitler declared war TO him. So why did not he?

Because Roosevelt was a master of the Dark Side: he let Nazism being used as a blunt instruments to destroy the competition in Europe, the other representative democracies (France, UK, Netherlands, Belgium, Norway… and their allies: Czechoslovakia, Poland, etc.) In the USA, this makes him a great man, an immense patriot, the founder of the “American Century”. The judgment of history, is another matter, entirely, let’s hope I contribute to it with my own point of view (“theory“).

In any case, President Roosevelt was a master plutocrat, whereas Hitler and Mussolini depended upon plutocrats. The case of Stalin is different: the Dark Side was so strong with him, he was able to surf over lots of plutocrats, as if they were waves, one after the other. Early on plutocrats of the USA (such as the Harriman Brothers) financed him (say to develop Baku oil fields). Engel in his theoretical book had said to do away with marriage, and embrace, free, secxual love. So Stalin’s satanic approach was pragmatic. Allied to German fascists, from 1916, until savagely attacked by his colleague Hitler, Stalin dictated his conditions to a weakened Roosevelt who was all too happy to give him half of Europe to chew on.

The Pragmatic Approach Can Be Opposed to the Principled One:

The USA stays highly pragmatic, never having ratified the Kyoto Protocol. Obama presented a plan to lead from behind technological progress (it affects energy production, about 30% of the CO2 production, but not transportation, another third, or industry). The solution, of course is to take out all subsidies for fossil fuels, starting with the richest countries, and doing so progressively. If Europe and the USA decided this, they could impose it, worldwide, through a carbon tax.

A conference in Paris is supposed to make desperate efforts to stop the rush through the two degrees Celsius, but the largest sub-arctic zone, Russia, has already barreled right through.

As long as hedge funds feel they can order the world around why should it be any different? What else?

Plutocrats say: all the problems arise from French-like socialism, and the European Unification related to it. Thus, they have got to say that so it is, with Puerto Rico’s debt crisis.

Puerto Rico’s debt crisis has to be related to the hydra of European unifying socialism, sneakily propelled by the French.  How could that not be? Contagion, what plutocrats fear the most, this what Greece and France brought: contagion of rebellion. Destroying direct democracy is why Persia financed the war of Sparta against Athens. Plutocrats have profited of this Persian investment, ever since.

The Greeks did not want to pay for their banks’ errors, and the state debt resulting from it. So the Greeks started a mood, a mood where those who owe resist their lords, the lenders. Hence the Puerto Rican legislature sudden decision to resist its masters, the hedge fund managers. So, you see, European leftists are not innocuous, they are already attacking on U.S. soil.

And the climate crisis? Purely a French invention. Proof? The climate conference is to be held in Paris in four months.

Nowadays, thanks in part to the Multiverse fanatics, no proofs are really necessary, screaming insanities is sufficient, to qualify for respect (as long as you have a big gun, or pocketbook, or aura given by those with guns, or pocketbooks). Everybody knows this, by now: the tedium of the medium is the message, and the massage.

Patrice Ayme’

Uber Greece: When The Main Industry Is Lying

July 25, 2015

Paul Krugman in  Uber and the New Liberal Consensus  points out that:“Uber actually brings two things to the taxi market. One is the smartphone revolution… The other is the company whose workers supposedly are free contractors, not employees, exempting the company from most of the regulations designed to protect employees…

…The “new liberal consensus“, argues (based on a lot of evidence) that wages are much less rigidly determined by supply and demand than previously thought, and that public policy can and should nudge employers into paying more. If that’s your policy plan, you really don’t want to see employers undermine it by declaring that they aren’t really employers…promote the use of new technology without prejudicing the interests of workers. But progressives need to work on doing that, and not let themselves get painted as enemies of innovation.”

Notice that Uber got lots of mileage from lying that they are an employer without employees. As technology and innovation advance, the law is left behind, and thus so are the punishments for violating it, or its spirit. We have seen a lot of that in the case of Greece. Lying has been supreme about how and thanks to whom, and most prominently, for whom, money is being created. Sometimes it feels as if we belong to an age where lying is the main industry. Engineering is good, lying, more profitable.

Another day, another economist from Munich lying about Greece, in the New York Times, while quoting (favorably) Goldman Sachs. “Why Greece Should Leave The Eurozone“:

“To compete, Greece needs a strong devaluation — a relative decline of its price level. Trying to lower prices and wages in absolute terms (for example, by slashing wages) would be very difficult, as it would bankrupt many debtors and tenants.

It would arguably be better to inflate prices in the rest of the eurozone…If the rest of the eurozone posts inflation rates of slightly less than 2 percent, as the E.C.B. hopes, Greece would be competitive after a decade or so, provided that its price level stays put…

What about the solution favored by leftists: more money for Greece? No doubt, enormous government spending would bring about a Keynesian stimulus and generate some modest internal growth. However, apart from the fact that this money would have to come from other countries’ taxpayers, this would be counterproductive, as it would prevent the necessary devaluation.”

The question of corrupt economic advice keeps coming back. Dreadful advice keeps on coming: first rescuing the private banks with state money, ruining the state, then austerity, ruining the economy. Now they want to make Greece worthless, because they say it will improve the economy.

By forcing on it a devastating devaluation, do Germans want to buy Greece on the cheap? Often it looks like it. The Greeks own more worthy property than Germans do. This property is valued in Euros. Germans cannot buy enough of it. But they could, if the currency used by Greeks became worthless, which is what many German economists advocate.

Those who want to make Greece worthless say: that would improve the Greek economy. However, the Greek economy depends upon tourism (which is roaring ahead), petroleum imports (which would become immensely expensive if Greece devalued), refined petroleum products (those contracts are in dollars, so would not profit from a devaluation) and shipping (all contracts are in dollars).

Ridiculous ideas are rolled out. Take Finland: it’s in recession, with 10% unemployment, still Finland accuses Greece. But, truly, what Finland needs is the same as what Greece needs: easy money and tons of it. Same observation for the Netherlands. That same “leftist” solution, the one the USA implemented for itself.

Hence why the nefarious advice? Because Europe has many enemies and many economists’ repute depends upon sinking the EU, while Wall Street profits from it.

The advice has been to bleed the patient, until he gets better: that’s austerity. Now the advice is to bury the patient, until it revives, raising from his ashes.

All what Greece needs is an anti-oligarchic revolution. Some in the EU will help achieve it.

And that’s why precisely the hysteria has been so great about sabotaging the EU by kicking Greece out. The powers that be don’t want a successful anti-oligarchic revolution. As all European states are supposed to be in the European Monetary Union, and Greece does not want out, this is the violence one was talking about.

Patrice Ayme’

MIT Gangsters Rule

July 24, 2015

Goodbye, Chicago boys. Hello, M.I.T. gang.”

Who says this? No less than Paul Krugman (himself with a PhD from MIT), in a New York Times editorial “The MIT Gang“. I will get back to the murder-friendly attitude of Krugman, who not only extols the MIT influence as a good thing, but moreover glosses over the nefarious influence of American trained economists, “The Chicago Boys“, in destroying democracy. And not just democracy. The role of economic ideology from the American plutocratic universities was so nefarious that tens of thousands were outright assassinated, so that Chicago economics could be implemented. Bad economics is bad in all ways, including the most murderous ones. Not only Stalin, Mussolini, Hitler and the Khemr Rouge had murderous economics. Arguably, present day economics may be even more lethal.

MIT Economics Favors Plutocracy (=Pluto Power)

MIT Economics Favors Plutocracy (=Pluto Power)

After 2008, the MIT gangsters Krugman effrontly lauds, put trillions of dollars at the disposition of the very banksters who had caused the 2008 crash. Yes, those gentlemen gangsters have names. Those gangsters are so famously, they could be called gangstars. Those stars directed the world’s two most important central banks, or played the top roles, just below the ill-fated Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the IMF, or World Bank, etc. (Krugman sings their praise, and their names, in his “MIT Gang” essay).

The crash was actually the transfer of colossal amounts of money from the banks to a subset of plutocrats, ruining the banks. To refloat the banks, public money (see Greece) was called in, both from Treasuries and from Central Banks. The red graph above depicts that transfer as the scarlet exponential of shame. And no one, among those who control the world, condescend to observe it, let alone, explain it.

Although I was diplomatic enough not to even allude to these horrors, I sent the following comment to the New York Times. It was immediately censored:

The Chicago, and MIT economic departments rule. Who elected them, as our leaders? Who elected the Central Banks, and authorized them to buy at outrageous prices the property of private banks? That’s so-called “Quantitative Easing“… Thus enabling the bankers, banksters and gangsters who caused the crash of 2008 to keep on deciding who wins, and who loses, socioeconomically?

The private banks, extend credit to the richest of the rich.Thus they comfort, and buttress the plutocrats… Who then invite the president to gather money during parties in their mansions.

Why have so few people, so much power? Under which political theory? Which theory advocates that only a few people rule? Few: in Greek, Oligos. To rule: Arkhein. Oligos-Arkein: such a theory is called Oligarchy.

So the few rule. Question: why is a MIT gang better than a Chicago gang, a Wall Street gang, or a Sicilian gang?

Because we owe more respect to a MIT gang than to the Mafia? Why? Did we vote to have so much respect for MIT, we want them, MIT gangsters, to take all the decisions about the society in which we live? Our economic well-beings? Our employment? Our lives?

And when did we switch from democracy (Greek: Demos-Kratos, English: People-Power) to Oligarchy? Did we vote to surrender our powers to various gangs? I gather we did not. Thus, when, and how did this silent coup occur? What measures do we need to take, to return to democracy?

Patrice Ayme’

Note: Some commentators have complained that I am too tough on Krugman: he is a good guy, he is on the side of progress, he is on my side, I am biting a fellow creature. Indeed, Krugman is viewed as the standard bearer of social progress, and not at all the standard bearer of plutocratic universities. So let Krugman talk a little bit more in his own offense in the editorial at hand: : “If you don’t know what I’m talking about, the term “Chicago boys” was originally used to refer to Latin American economists, trained at the University of Chicago, who took radical free-market ideology back to their home countries. The influence of these economists was part of a broader phenomenon: The 1970s and 1980s were an era of ascendancy for laissez-faire economic ideas and the Chicago school, which promoted those ideas.

But that was a long time ago. Now a different school is in the ascendant, and deservedly so.”

Notice the pernicious context. What you have to know is that these “Latin American Economists trained at the University of Chicago, who took radical free-market ideology back to theior home countries.”

It sounds innocuous, but actually these “boys” set-up dictatorships in their countries, who killed tens of thousands of people in Argentina alone.

Similar “economic” performance was achieved in Chile, Brazil, and a dozen other Latin American states thus inspired. Nothing that Paul Krugman is allowed to remember while he wants to stay in good standing with plutocracy supreme.

Patrice Ayme’

 

Plutocracy’s Fascist, Europhobic Dream

July 20, 2015

Europe’s Impossible Dream” proclaims the New York Times’ Paul Krugman. What dream is that? The dream that Europe needs another currency, besides the dollar. All right American supremacists do not say this in so many words… Instead they use convoluted, illogical reasoning, as I will presently demonstrate.

Good propaganda starts with correct facts. Krugman:

“Greece is experiencing a slump worse than the Great Depression, and nothing happening now offers hope of recovery. Spain has been hailed as a success story, because its economy is finally growing — but it still has 22 percent unemployment. And there is an arc of stagnation across the continent’s top: Finland is experiencing a depression comparable to that in southern Europe, and Denmark and the Netherlands are also doing very badly.

How did things go so wrong? The answer is that this is what happens when self-indulgent politicians ignore arithmetic and the lessons of history. And no, I’m not talking about leftists in Greece or elsewhere; I’m talking about ultra-respectable men in Berlin, Paris, and Brussels, who have spent a quarter-century trying to run Europe on the basis of fantasy economics.”

Commodities Crashing Worldwide: Not A Euro Problem, Mr. Krugman!

Commodities Crashing Worldwide: Not A Euro Problem, Mr. Krugman!

Then Krugman operates his bait and switch:

“To someone who didn’t know much economics, or chose to ignore awkward questions establishing a unified European currency sounded like a great idea. It would make doing business across national borders easier, while serving as a powerful symbol of unity. Who could have foreseen the huge problems the euro would eventually cause?”

Several remarks here: first, for people like Krugman, apparently society and economics is reduced to “doing business”. In truth, having multiple currencies was a major hindrance, I have said this many times. Try a currency in New Jersey, one in New York, one in Connecticut, one in Massachusetts. It’s not just business which will be inconvenienced. Europe has as many states as the USA. Krugman can’t understand this: not smart enough, or with an agenda? You judge.

Commodity Deflation, In Dollars. Not A Euro Crisis, Mr. Krugman!

Commodity Deflation, In Dollars. Not A Euro Crisis, Mr. Krugman!

Good propaganda accuses the scapegoat with wild abandon. According to Nazis, everything was the fault of the Jews, and the French. According to Krugman the ills of the economic world can all be traced to the Euro. Bankers who feed him, are beyond any suspicion. The bait is to enounce correct facts, the switch is to accuse the innocent, in this case “Europe’s Impossible Dream” and the common currency, thus causing unfathomable distraction, away from the real culprits. Krugman:

“Who could have foreseen the huge problems the euro would eventually cause?

Actually, lots of people.”

Who are Krugman’s heroes? Eurosceptics, naturally. Krugman:

“The only big mistake of the euroskeptics [sic] was underestimating just how much damage the single currency would do.

The point is that it wasn’t at all hard to see, right from the beginning, that currency union without political union was a very dubious project. So why did Europe go ahead with it?”

The problem with someone as Krugman, is that he has no idea about European history, whatsoever, except the pro-Nazi propaganda of Lord Keynes. Krugman affects to think Europeans are idiots anxious to please plutocrats, and their obsequious servants:

“Mainly, I’d say, because the idea of the euro sounded so good. That is, it sounded forward-looking, European-minded, exactly the kind of thing that appeals to the kind of people who give speeches at Davos.”

***

Krugman, Or The Pseudo-Left: 

Who is Paul Krugman? Not only does he have a bully pulpit at the New York Times, and a Nobel, but he is, according to polls, the most trusted voice by the left… in Europe. Listening to him too uncritically can only lead to anti-Europeanism.

The domination of English is also the domination of the Financial Times, The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, and the ever more sneaky New York Times. The Anglosphere’s tendrils are definitively plutocratic in their outreach.

In his very anti-European article, Krugman says that the case for devaluing the Greece currency is overwhelming: I agree with this, the Euro ought to be devalued.

If Greece had its own currency, and devalued massively, it would not profit much economically: Greece’s main import-export activity is to buy petrol and then sells it refined: all these transactions are priced in dollars. Leaving the Euro would make Greece ready to become a satellite of the USA again (complete with colonels).

***

Why are we submitted to so much anti-Europeanism?

Because the plutocrats and their obnoxious servants have interest to say that the problem is the Euro, not banksters, and banksterism, the situation where bankers create money (as credit) and give it to they friends.

Then said friends run away with the money, banks turn around, and ask treasuries and central banks to allow them to make money again. (One way to do this is Quantitative Easing, something Krugman love as it feeds the banksters, who feed him.)

None of this giant financialo-economic drama has to do with the Euro. To imply that Denmark, the Netherlands and Finland have problems because of the Euro is inaccurate (to put it mildly). Switzerland is also pegged to the Euro, and does great, because of its diversified knowledge economy (where pharmaceuticals dominate).

Krugman is aware, but disingenuously denies, that loving the dollar is hating the euro:

“if you were an American expressing doubts you were invariably accused of ulterior motives — of being hostile to Europe, or wanting to preserve the dollar’s “exorbitant privilege.”

And the euro came. For a decade after its introduction a huge financial bubble masked its underlying problems. But now, as I said, all of the skeptics’ fears have been vindicated.”

***

Why the Euro?

Because France and Germany have had enough to fight each other. The two countries are roughly comparable in all ways, economically and financially. They are converging demographically. They used to be the same country for five centuries, a time during which a unified Germany, and a German language was created.

The re-creation of a unified Germany, after 1,000 years, without, led to near continuous war between France and Germany, for, fundamentally, philosophical reasons.

France won, both sides are now sister republics, ready for total reunification. Thus they need a common currency. Then the in-betweens (truly pieces of France which were torn away from France, to make France weaker) cannot survive without using that same currency. Then one has to add contiguous areas with the same socioeconomic level (Austria, Northern Italy, Catalogne; the latter two long part of French territory, especially if one defines France as more than just the so-called “kingdom of France“, which was often a very small, relevant territory  inasmuch as it was supposed to be the imperial seat). At this point one is well above 200 million people with the same currency, and a GDP only second to the USA.

This territory is the old Francia which founded Western Civilization. Western Civilization is not just Jerusalem, Athens plus Rome, as many have it. It’s also the Franks and the tolerant melting pot they imposed on the Germano-Gallo-Romans, with their home made, advanced, pseudo-Christian philosophy.

How can the rest of Europe be excluded?

The USA acquired its common currency during the Secession War. So far, the attempt to secede in Europe are rather meek. Let’s keep them this way.

Naturally, the USA’s patriots can only hate to have a second world reserve currency. The dollar as world currency was imposed on Keynes through the substitution of the crucial document for another one.

Paul Krugman never mentions the felony that gave rise, over Keynes’ obstinate resistance, to the dollar as world currency.

Europe is not an impossible dream. Should it become so, so will human civilization. Because Europe is a toy model of the global problem of nationalities.

More fundamentally, today’s civilization, all the way to China, Japan and Patagonia or South Africa, was invented mostly in Europe. Admitting it is impossible, is admitting a nice future is impossible.

Is all lost? Did American europhobic university professors win? Not sure. Hollande and Merkel are working on a Eurozone government, democratically anchored through a subset of the European Parliament. It’s high time. “Le nationalisme, c’est la guerre!” (nationalism is war) said French president Mitterrand in one of his last discourses. Ironically, Chancellor Kohl had proposed further political union when he signed on the Euro project, and Mitterrand, then hindered by a divided government, turned him down.

I am sure Frau Doktor Merkel remembers this, and will seize the opportunity.

Patrice Ayme’

Why Euro Wrecks. So Argue About It.

July 3, 2015

In Greece, some of the upper class, including conservative officers high in the army, or investors who absolutely did not vote for the leftist Syriza, plan to follow Prime Minister Tsipras’ advice to vote NO to the referendum. In other words, the country is very divided.

(In the same vein, I have, unusually, no strong advice: there are great arguments for both the YES and the NO vote; however, I think it’s a good thing to vote, people ought to do this all the time, because they are all forced to go out and think about the process; it’s too bad Tsipras called the referendum with such short notice, though; the arguing process needs time, as the “votations” in Switzerland show: one can see opinions change, over a period of months. If I had to vote, I would vote NO. But it’s not a vote against the Euro, of course. It is just a vote against the obsequious butlers of arrogant plutocrats, their institutions, the so-called “creditors”, and the wanton cruelty, viciousness and outrageous lies, and sneaky misrepresentations and red herrings.)

Paul Krugman in “Europe’s Many Economic Disasters” points out that:

“It’s depressing thinking about Greece these days, so let’s talk about something else, O.K.? Let’s talk, for starters, about Finland, which couldn’t be more different from that corrupt, irresponsible country to the south. Finland is a model European citizen; it has honest government, sound finances and a solid credit rating, which lets it borrow money at incredibly low interest rates.

It’s also in the eighth year of a slump that has cut real gross domestic product per capita by 10 percent and shows no sign of ending. In fact, if it weren’t for the nightmare in southern Europe, the troubles facing the Finnish economy might well be seen as an epic disaster.”

Greek Debt Service Was Reduced Too Little, Too Late

Greek Debt Service Was Reduced Too Little, Too Late

Astutely, Krugman insists that these crises are not just ubiquitous, but also that the usual plutocratic interpretation cannot be brandished, because the FRENCH Republic, the most social country of them all, escapes relatively well. Krugman:

“And Finland isn’t alone. It’s part of an arc of economic decline that extends across northern Europe through Denmark — which isn’t on the euro, but is managing its money as if it were — to the Netherlands. All of these countries are, by the way, doing much worse than France, whose economy gets terrible press from journalists who hate its strong social safety net, but it has actually held up better than almost every other European nation except Germany.”

The case of the French Republic is special: France in more ways than one, is a mini USA. The French economy does everything, from extremely high tech and science to exporting agriculture. It is the most diversified economy in the world, with the USA. However, it has been suffering immensely from too high a currency.

In comparison, Finland is a two tricks pony: timber and Nokia. Germany does well with high quality high tech exports, but one can expect China to catch up with luxury cars.

The meaning of recovery in Greece has become unreal. Krugman:

“And what about southern Europe outside Greece? European officials have been hyping the recovery in Spain, which did everything it was supposed to do and whose economy has finally started to grow again and even to create jobs. But success, European-style, means an unemployment rate that is still almost 23 percent and real income per capita that is still down 7 percent from its pre-crisis level. Portugal has also obediently implemented harsh austerity — and is 6 percent poorer than it used to be.”

European so-called “leaders”, these corruptocrats drunk on power, have a lot of explaining to do. Krugman:

”Why are there so many economic disasters in Europe? Actually, what’s striking at this point is how much the origin stories of European crises differ. Yes, the Greek government borrowed too much. But the Spanish government didn’t — Spain’s story is all about private lending and a housing bubble. And Finland’s story doesn’t involve debt at all. It is, instead, about weak demand for forest products, still a major national export, and the stumbles of Finnish manufacturing, in particular of its erstwhile national champion Nokia.”

Krugman comes close to the real explanation, but his semantics start to drift inappropriately:

“What all of these economies have in common, however, is that by joining the eurozone they put themselves into an economic straitjacket. Finland had a very severe economic crisis at the end of the 1980s — much worse, at the beginning, than what it’s going through now. But it was able to engineer a fairly quick recovery in large part by sharply devaluing its currency, making its exports more competitive. This time, unfortunately, it had no currency to devalue. And the same goes for Europe’s other trouble spots.

Does this mean that creating the euro was a mistake? Well, yes.”

Well, no. The Euro was not a mistake. The mistake was to put Goldman-Sachs and its ilk in command (see below). Competitive devaluations are a form of war. And the idea of an Union is no more war. The USA went to war for Union, and out of it came the “greenback”, the national currency of the USA (which was created for the war, and was part of the war effort). The dollar was created to make a more perfect union. Europe wants, and needs, a more perfect union.

The real mistake is that Jacques Delors, head of the European Commission,  and his team had said the Euro ought to stand on two legs. However, only one was built. National governments, power hungry, made sure that the other transnational leg not be built. It was also handy that by not building the required transnational EUROPEAN governance, one made the sure that High Finance and its plutocrats could have free rein. In other words, Goldman Sachs and its ilk were given the opportunity to lead Europe, precisely because the European “leaders” did not give the Peoples of Europe the opportunity to build a European governance in matters financial, monetary and economic. Krugman:

“But that’s not the same as saying that [the Euro] should be eliminated now that it exists. The urgent thing now is to loosen that straitjacket. This would involve action on multiple fronts, from a unified system of bank guarantees to a willingness to offer debt relief for countries where debt is the problem. It would also involve creating a more favorable overall environment for countries trying to adjust to bad luck by renouncing excessive austerity and doing everything possible to raise Europe’s underlying inflation rate — currently below 1 percent — at least back up to the official target of 2 percent.”

But there are many European officials and politicians who are opposed to anything and everything that might make the euro workable, who still believe that all would be well if everyone exhibited sufficient discipline. And that’s why there is even more at stake in Sunday’s Greek referendum than most observers realize.”

A characteristic of the Euro has been that, in spite of a terribly worsening economic situation, and desperately low interest rates, the Euro stayed very high, as if the situation was rosy. When the situation was bad in Germany, ten years ago, the Euro was at 86 cents on the Dollars. When several Euro countries hit unemployment of nearly 30% (as Spain did), the Euro was very strong, nearly 150 cents on the dollar. Who engineered that absurdity? The same Goldman Sachs specialists who (were paid to) hid part of the Greek debt The bankers lent inappropriately, and to whom did they lend? To their friends, their associates, the rich? 92% of the money borrowed by Greece since the crisis began went to banks. Why were the bankers not prosecuted? Differently from simple Greek retirees who saw their retirement collapse, they are culprit. The real question is, to whom did establishing this mess profit? The creditors? Are they trying to reduce everybody to misery?

Krugman feels that using a bit of violence against European authorities would be a good thing:

“One of the great risks if the Greek public votes yes — that is, votes to accept the demands of the creditors, and hence repudiates the Greek government’s position and probably brings the government down — is that it will empower and encourage the architects of European failure. The creditors will have demonstrated their strength, their ability to humiliate anyone who challenges demands for austerity without end. And they will continue to claim that imposing mass unemployment is the only responsible course of action.

What if Greece votes no? This will lead to scary, unknown terrain. Greece might well leave the euro, which would be hugely disruptive in the short run. But it will also offer Greece itself a chance for real recovery. And it will serve as a salutary shock to the complacency of Europe’s elites.

Or to put it a bit differently, it’s reasonable to fear the consequences of a “no” vote, because nobody knows what would come next. But you should be even more afraid of the consequences of a “yes,” because in that case we do know what comes next — more austerity, more disasters and eventually a crisis much worse than anything we’ve seen so far.”

Well, it’s not that simple. In 2008, everybody was supposed to freak out because ONE BANK of the USA went bankrupt. Now we have an entire country going bankrupt. A country with twice the population of Norway, or that of the average state of the USA.

If Greece is allowed to go fully bankrupt (no, I am not contradicting myself: in the case of the IMF, there is a three month grace, or limbo, period), we will know that European countries are allowed to go bankrupt.

And why? There are many reason, but one is particularly salient: Goldman Sachs, an American bank, and high finance conspiracy outfit, deliberately engineered a misrepresentation of Greek finance. Why are these conspirators not punished?

If countries are allowed to go bankrupt, why don’t they all go bankrupt? After all, that’s the idea of devaluation Krugman likes so much.

The referendum is a good idea, allows Europeans to accuse those who torture Europe. Already the IMF is backing off, and just announced that, after all, some of the Greek debt ought to be reduced (PM Tsipras immediately asked for a 30% debt reduction).

The referendum is good, because it allows Europeans to argue about which Europe they want.

Do they want a Europe where Goldman-Sachs is free to conspire, or one where We The People rule? Let’s have referenda and arguments all over.

That’s how baboons vote (they vote with their feet). If baboons can do it, Europeans ought to be enable to emulate them.

Fundamentally, plutocrats want the monopoly of money and power, which defines them. In Europe, they have made sure to starve all what We The People want or need, and they did this by restricting how many Euros, how much currency, circulates.

By the way, it’s also how the Roman economy collapsed. By 300 CE, Rome did not have enough money, and so established a control and command economy (what the USSR became famous for).

Now the corrupt clowns who lead Europe are afraid that We The People, all over Europe, is going to start fighting against the creditors. An obvious case is “Podemos” in Spain, a party similar to Syriza. All over, We The People has to ask: how come so much borrowing was made in our name, to reimburse banksters?

Things are coming to a head. The economic crisis, engineered by plutocrats, feeds the Islamist crisis, whose deep inception was also plutocratic:

The danger of an extremely violent insurrection against the established order is increasing by the day. After all, president Teddy Roosevelt took drastic measures against monopolistic capitalism. What had happened before? Well, Teddy’s predecessor, Mac Kinley, had been assassinated (1901 CE). So had been French president Sadi Carnot (1894). These assassinations were part of a general assassination campaign against political leaders of anarchist ideology. Islamist ideology may well play a similar role. Already many blond blue eyed Europeans are converting to Islam, and joining Jihad. Rage against the system is why they do. The enemies of my enemies may not be my friends, but, when violence has gone too far, only more violence can stop it.

Patrice Ayme’

Greek Crisis, Or Greed Crisis?

June 30, 2015

The Awesome Gratuitousness of the Greek Crisis” bemoans Paul Krugman. Really? Is not that a bit naïve? How does that fit with converting the Drachma at twice the rate, or Lagarde changing her music, after the Greeks had accepted her conditions? Does not it all look at a different plan of the “Deep State”? Like having just one boss, supposedly located in a White House?

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/06/29/the-awesome-gratuitousness-of-the-greek-crisis/

Indeed, my dear Paul Krugman, the exact chronology of events makes one rather believe that [IMF Director Lagarde] is following her usual pattern: doing what she’s told to do, and taking the heat, as Dominique Deux, an esteemed commenter on this site, puts it. Dominique’s profession involves him with this sort of people, he is in a good position to know.

So is it a case that: “There are horrible people who, instead of solving a problem, tangle it up and make it harder to solve for anyone who wants to deal with it. Whoever does not know how to hit the nail on the head should be asked not to hit it at all.”

[Friedrich Nietzsche The Wanderer and His Shadow, aphorism 326, 1880.]

Well, I don’t think so. The Drachma was deliberately converted at twice its rate. Everybody knew it at the time. That was clearly a time bomb.

***

Paul Krugman’s Analysis Of The Raw Data, I Agree With:

“I’ve been looking back at the numbers, readily available from the IMF, and what strikes me is how relatively mild Greek fiscal problems looked on the eve of crisis.

In 2007, Greece had public debt of slightly more than 100 percent of GDP — high, but not out of line with levels that many countries including, for example, the UK have carried for decades and even generations at a stretch. It had a budget deficit of about 7 percent of GDP. If we think that normal times involve 2 percent growth and 2 percent inflation, a deficit of 4 percent of GDP would be consistent with a stable debt/GDP ratio; so the fiscal gap was around 3 points, not trivial but hardly something that should have been impossible to close.

Now, the IMF says that the structural deficit was much larger — but this reflects its estimate that the Greek economy was operating 10 percent above capacity, which I don’t believe for a minute.”

And Krugman concludes that:

“So yes, Greece was overspending, but not by all that much. It was over indebted, but again not by all that much. How did this turn into a catastrophe that among other things saw debt soar to 170 percent of GDP despite savage austerity?

The euro straitjacket, plus inadequately expansionary monetary policy within the eurozone, are the obvious culprits. But that, surely, is the deep question here. If Europe as currently organized can turn medium-sized fiscal failings into this kind of nightmare, the system is fundamentally unworkable.”

Well, the system was revealed to be unworkable, thanks to the 2008 financial crisis. States were asked to come in, and replenish banks stolen by plutocrats. Meanwhile, the taxing authority and capability of states had been stolen by the likes of Jean-Claude Junckers:

***

I Stole, Thus I lead:

The president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Junckers, speaks of “betrayal” (“trahison” in his native French). He should know about betrayal. Whereas the semi-mythical Corleone in the movie “The Godfather” stole millions, Junckers helped to steal directly hundreds of billions of Euros, and, indirectly, trillions.

When the Euro was conceived by Jacques Delors and his colleagues, it was supposed to stand on two legs, one financial, one economic. However, jealous national governments decided to do away with the economic leg. Only after the 2008 financial crisis was reluctantly built a partial banking union (with mutual insurance and inspection of the biggest banks).

In Greece, as elsewhere, governments saved failing banks with public funds. However, in Greece, the real deficit was higher than the official one, and Greece needed a supplementary help from foreign institutions such as the ECB, EC, and IMF (the “Troika”).

The Troika provided enough rope with its help, to hang Greece with, thanks to “austerity” measures.

***

Let’s Vote NO To Plutocrats and Their Obsequious Servants:

Here is Paul Krugman again:

….”acceding to the troika’s ultimatum would represent the final abandonment of any pretense of Greek independence. Don’t be taken in by claims that troika officials are just technocrats explaining to the ignorant Greeks what must be done. These supposed technocrats are in fact fantasists who have disregarded everything we know about macroeconomics, and have been wrong every step of the way. This isn’t about analysis, it’s about power — the power of the creditors to pull the plug on the Greek economy, which persists as long as euro exit is considered unthinkable.”

Indeed.

The ECB, the IMF and European “leaders” are not incompetent. They are extremely powerful, and thus extremely corrupt. What use is their absolute power, if they do not show they can use it absolutely? Should not they engage in the hard work plutocrats and banksters have entrusted them with? Otherwise why should they, or their relations, get rewarded when they come out?

What they want to hide is the nature of the financial crisis, and thus the nature of finance.

“Austerity” is another word for the plutocratization banksters have increasingly brought, over the last few decades. They define the rules, they write the laws. They are indignant that the Greeks vote, because the Greek elite ought to be mature enough to feel that Democracy, Demos-Kratos, People Power, is just a mask for the power of the few and well connected.

There is no reason for austerity whatsoever, if one lived in democracy.

Verily, there is plenty of money out there, among the filthy rich, and plenty of capacity to make money, as needed for We The People. What is in short supply is the will to provide money for We The People.

Alain Bauer, a top, world class criminologist who does not teach only in France but also overseas, for example China, Singapore, estimates that the total money hidden in tiny tax havens amounts to 70 trillion dollars. Even more money is hidden in plain sight, thanks to Delaware and Great Britain (the famous “Non-Doms”), and shell companies.

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/07/06/usa-financial-extortion/

***

Money Creation Is Diverted To Plutocrats, By Plutocrats:

It’s not different from Stalinism, fundamentally!

Even more money is created by the banks for financial derivative trading. The size of that trade, somewhere out there on planet finance is more than ten times world GDP (so it’s around 800 trillion dollars). How come most of the money created is created for the richest, by the richest?

Don’t forget that banks are given a public mandate to create most of the money. So, in a sense, bankers ought to be just what they are: public employees, the modern equivalent of those who struck coins for the government in the three thousand years prior.

It frequently happens in history that minor events act like the proverbial snowball. This, clearly, maybe one such case. It is, in particular, the IMF, based in Washington, last I checked, which is pulling the plug.

What is Washington doing in what ought to be internal European affairs? Well, demolishing a financially independent Europe. Agents of the USA such as the head of the ECB, Draghi, will be happy to oblige. Draghi got his Phd at MIT, and was later  vice-chairman at Goldman-Sachs a Financial Uber Conspiracy Katastrophe (with a telling acronym).

What could go wrong? Last time there was a catastrophe of financial type, banksters lost the banks’ money to plutocrats, and We The People was asked to reimburse the banks. Thus, overall, the wealthiest people and organizations came out of it even richer.

Now the Greeks are refusing to obey, and get ever poorer with their own agreement. Time for another catastrophe? If well done, the rich ought to get even richer. With a little bit of help from their friends at the ECB, IMF, EU, EC, and all these strings pulled from Washington and New York, etc.

http://baselinescenario.com/2010/03/15/senator-kaufman-fraud-still-at-the-heart-of-wall-street/

We have different hearts than those of Wall Street, and it is exactly what the Greeks are now showing for all to see.

Patrice Ayme’

Tech, Science, Thinking, Stalled By Plutocracy

May 26, 2015

TECH STALLED BECAUSE SO IS SCIENCE, & THINKING, AS OUR MASTERS DESIRE

Technology, Energy, Science, Economy all entangled, & Stalled:

Some have observed tech is bringing up more hype than progress: we did not get flying cars, but 140 characters. Productivity is stagnating. The Internet hype led a devolution of thinking, for all to see. Some sites seem popular, mostly because they induce a parody of thinking (even on “academic” sites).

Against the will to stupidity, genius roars in vain.

So much of the “high Tech” is not truly high tech, or at least new tech. It’s no big deal, indeed. The “high tech” monopolies, with their “big data” will allow to make with robots what our ancestors used to have with domesticated animals (an ass, horse, or an ox are clever, and respond to voice commands, like the day after tomorrow’s robots).

There is not enough financing of the possible avenues of futuristic research. Here is one:

Real high tech would mean progress in energy production: this is the core of what defines our species. An obvious possibility, indeed, is thermonuclear fusion. H-Bombs work splendidly, and are very small. Making a thermonuclear engine has been difficult, but propulsion in space could turn around a lot of the difficulty we presently have.

Krugman noticed some of this in “The Big Meh” [I sent wise comments, therefore all censored by the New York Times; the Times later sent me kindly an unsolicited letter to justify its censorship; there is no excuse: the New York Times should not censor serious and cogent comments, this is a misuse of technology].

Krugman: “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”… began with some technology snark, dismissing Earth as a planet whose life-forms “are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.”… Since then we’ve moved on to much more significant things, so much so that the big technology idea of 2015, so far, is a digital watch…

O.K., I’m snarking, too. But there is a real question here. Everyone knows that we live in an era of incredibly rapid technological change, which is changing everything. But what if what everyone knows is wrong? And I’m not being wildly contrarian here. A growing number of economists, looking at the data on productivity and incomes, are wondering if the technological revolution has been greatly overhyped — and some technologists share their concern.”

We evolved as a technological species: weapon and tool usage precedes the apparition of Homo:

Technology preceded the apparition of Homo Erectus, two million years ago. So we can only conclude that technology, and its attached science, and scientific method, created the ecological niche in which Homo, even homo Erectus, evolved.

The fundamental evolutionary niche our very distant ancestors, pre-Homo Erectus, chose was to improve the quantity and quality of energy at our disposal. They went to explore, far from trees and cliffs, armed with stone tools and weapons, with a bias towards a much more carnivorous diet.

Technology and science are us. This is as human as we get. That does not mean anything goes. Just, that’s how humanity gets going.

Thus, our very evolution is entangled with our mastery of energy. Neanderthals used coal (lignite!) already 80,000 years ago. When our ancestors learned to domesticate animals and then invented agriculture, we improved our mastery of energy considerably. In the last 2,000 years, wood was progressively replaced by fossil fuels.

However, fossil fuels have become unsustainable. It is not just that they have put so much CO2 in the lower atmosphere, warming it, melting the ice, rising the seas, and into the ocean, making it acid.

The Return On Investment (ROI) of fossil fuels is now terrible. Major oil companies do not make much profits on new fields: they cost too much to find and exploit. Fracking makes money, but only because the states, and others, pay the price. Remember: 5.3 trillion dollars of fossil fuel subsidies out there.

However progress in economic matters is all about ROI in energy. Without energy we have no food, no shelter, we die.

We don’t have flying cars because we did not improve our mastery of energy as much as that would require (the very first plane, part of a French military program, did not fly very far: it used a heavy steam plant; shortly after, the internal combustion engine allowed to take-off more clearly; right now Airbus sells an electric plane, and intents to develop that technology much further).

Fundamental progress in energy technology has been stalled by lack of advances in fission, fusion, and batteries. Only solar photovoltaics is making really spectacular progress.

This stalling of major technological progress where it counts, in energy management is why society, and the planet, are threatened. This stalling is directly related to a dearth of fundamental research funding, itself related to the rise of a non-tax paying plutocracy. We are in whirlpool of disaster, and the greed of an oligarchy is its nature.

Patrice Ayme’

P/S: Latest News: Amazon Inc. just announced it would stop hiding its European profits in Luxembourg, and would set-up tax paying subsidiaries in various countries: it was threatened by incoming British and French laws. However, skepticism is widespread about the fine print in Amazon’s proposal…

The future was not stalled in the past: Contrarily to what happened around the era from, say, 1900 to 1970, when many futuristic technologies were researched; the USA operated nuclear rocket engines, France flew a “statoreacteur” (“ramjet”) plane, etc.; the inception of motorized flight, from the French steam plane, all the way to jet engines, took around 50 years!