Saturday, March 28, 2009

Well, well, well.

Someone is throwing down the gauntlet. See the video at the site and tell me what you think.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Mussolini Would Have Been Proud!

Some commentators may seem as if they are being reasonable when they give Secretary of The Treasury Tim Geithner's latest rehashing of the "private-public partnership" plan serious consideration as possibly having merit, but I'm here to tell you that such "analysts" are not only NOT being reasonable, they are being either naive or stupid.

One blogger, by the name of Karl Denninger, who has a marked tendency to toot his own horn whenever remotely warranted, thinks that Mr. Geithner's plan might work if it isn't "gamed". I'd laugh, except that I'm busy shaking my head in disbelief at such idiocy. Mr. Denninger doesn't seem to understand that any plan that has been demonstrated to be theoretically so easily gamed (by Mr. Denninger himself as well as Economist Yves Smith, among others) was almost certainly constructed that way precisely so that it would be gamed. Look who we are talking about for **&!! sake. Tim -No Tax Paying, I am a protegee of Robert Rubin, and look what dodgy business I pulled off I while was at the New York Fed- Geithner. He is Wall Street's creature, lock, stock and smoking barrel. And by now we all ought to know that what is good for Wall Street is almost certainly lethally toxic to the rest of the United States. RIGHT?

And as per today's action on the NYSE, Wall Street has shown that it absolutely loves Mr. Geithner's plan, which is the best possible proof that "the partnership plan" amounts to another sickening segment in an ongoing saga that, were it a novel, might be entitled, "The Impoverishment and Looting of the U.S Citizenry, Made Possible by the Crucial Assistance of the U.S. Government on Behalf of the Criminal Banksters of Wall Street!"

Friday, March 20, 2009

A Word or Two About "Tea Parties."

The so called "Tea Party" demonstrations being planned for later this year at different spots around the country are not, in my opinion, worthy of being mentioned in the same breath with The Boston Tea Party for the simple reason that the present day brand of tea party seemingly involves nothing but jaw flapping and general displays of emotion. This simply doesn't compare in any substantial way with what occurred on December 16th, 1773, in Boston Harbor, where a bunch of colonial citizens dressed as native American engaged in a covert act of insurrection against British Rule.

As good old Wikipedia puts it, The Boston Tea Party, an event which involved the willful and planned destruction of private property, in this case, tea, was a "major catalyst" of The American Revolution. I don't know exactly what our present day tea party participants have in mind to accomplish with their ceremony, but if it's a step towards some real change, I'd like to offer the wisdom and insight of playwright, Bertolt Brecht, who said, "If you want to have a revolution, you have to walk on the lawn."

The American colonialists of old might have offered that you have to dump someone's tea in the harbor. Either way, call me when you're ready to trample on the grass or dunk some goods in the drink.

In the interest of fairness...

Here's U.S. Representative Brad Sherman of California talking complete sense to CNBC shills Mark Haynes and Erin Burnett about AIG, bailouts, and executive compensation. Folks in Congress of Sherman's ilk are sadly few and far between.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

And This....

which led to the action alluded to in the previous post.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

This is What I Mean.

Now multiply Senator Dodd's egregious act by several orders of magnitude and you will begin to take the measure of the aggregate behavior of our elected officials.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Fleecing Continues.

At this juncture I'm not entirely sure what the point is of continuing to chronicle government malfeasance and mendacity as it pertains to the devastated financial realm. There are plenty of blogs, some of which I have listed on this site, that do an excellent job of keeping tabs on the ongoing financial horror show, so one more voice, i.e. mine, probably isn't exactly necessary. The pity is that the diligent reportage of other bloggers, who have substantially more expertise than I, seems to have had no appreciable effect on public policy. I think the primary value provided by those writing on financial matters, whether they be name or no name authors, has been to instill some small number of the populace with the confidence to take the necessary steps to avoid having their life savings wiped out. This is no small matter, and while the job of stewarding folks away from the financial abyss is most commendable, my efforts, at least where this blog is concerned, will be increasingly towards awakening in my readers a revolutionary spirit, particularly where their government is concerned.

Yes, that's right, from this day forward, I'm here to agitate for a "REAL CHANGE" not "change you can believe in." For that matter, forget the word believe. I don't want people to have to resort to the con artistry of faith, I want people to KNOW that the sort of change they had in mind when they voted is real and not some facade erected to bamboozle them. That said, President Obama's brand of change is no change at all. I know many of us who voted for Barack Obama may not want to believe that, but, lamentably, it's true. How do I know he's a con? I know because of who he has surrounded himself with, particularly with respect to his economic team, but the evidence hardly ends there.

But let me take this beyond the disappointment of the sitting President, because the issue transcends the Commander in Chief. It more properly rests with the the Democrats and Republicans, a two headed hydra that has confounded genuine reform and progress now for generations. The cavalcade of professional politicians that make up the vast majority of membership in both parties are in thrall to corporate interests to a degree that can not be addressed without severe upheaval. For those of you who have tried to effectuate change through traditional means, i.e. voting, personal visits, letters, faxes, e-mails, petitions, and on and on, it should be apparent by now that those methods are largely ineffective. To that end, despite enormous numbers of well argued good faith appeals from the citizenry, government's handling of the banking crisis, if that is indeed all it is, has been unconscionable. Regrettably the corruption in government is so deep and pervasive that to truly address our present predicament to the degree required would expose levels of corruption that would likely destroy governments ability to, well, govern.

This is why AIG and the rest of the financial malefactors are not dealt with as they ought to be. I believe that the legislature and the executive know that to fully do so would reveal shocking levels of corruption that would likely send even the most sleepy members of the citizenry into the streets with a frightening sense of purpose and resolve. So, instead of hard nosed and constructive reform, we have, instead, initiatives that do little but maintain things as they are via a haze of misinformation and obfuscation. Our government and its leaders are akin to the Wizard of Oz, a character who was widely thought to be a benevolent if fearsome potentate, but who was, in reality, nothing more than a wily, pot bellied, middle aged grifter. My dear readers, it is time to take down the Wizard.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Hands off the Heroin?

Obama wants to reach out to moderate elements in The Taliban...if there are any. Why such an interest in, nay, emphasis on, Afghanistan? It's been advertised for some time now, and one wonders what is really going on with that. As you may have guessed by now, I rarely, if ever, accept the reasons proffered by government regarding policy decisions. No reasonable person should. Governments, especially ones as corrupt as ours, rarely reveal the the truth about their agendas. When one is up to no good, deception must be the modus operandi. But I digress a tad.

Of course there aren't really any reasons being put forth regarding why America should be expanding its military presence in Afghanistan other than the knee jerk one spelled, Terrorists! For my money, and it is my money come to think of it, our renewed efforts in Afghanistan are likely as much about controlling the opium trade in the region as they are about corralling pesky terrorists. Actually this administration's special interest in Afghanistan is more precisely about using vast poppy trade profits to fund all of the CIA and NSA's dirty work. When tax receipts are falling faster than an anvil tossed off the Empire State Building, one must find alternative means to keep vital agencies fully functional.

I know, even suggesting that (elements of) the U.S. government are concerned with controlling a region's heroin trade smacks (no pun intended) of anti-American conspiracy fantasy. Not really. The way things work for global powers is that any and all means are used to achieve one's goals, and good business is any business that puts the biggest pile of dough in your pocket. That's the way the big boys play ball and the U.S. as the world's biggest protection racket is far from being an exception. So please pardon me if I'm not presenting any evidence to buttress my case, but it is a fact that the heroin trade in Afghanistan got a big boost when The Taliban were taken down a peg or two following the downing of the World Trade Centers.

So, if the Taliban and other "terrorists", have, over the last many months or years, reasserted themselves, the ideology behind the U.S. drive to increase its military presence in the region might be: "Hands off the heroin."

Friday, March 6, 2009


The recession's status as "the worst recession in the postwar era" has been confirmed by none other than Ellen Zentner, a senior economist at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd. in New York, who also offered that “There is not a single sign that points to a bottom yet."

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Point of Recognition!

We are not so slowly reaching the point when a consensus will form around the idea that our present circumstances are more accurately described by the term depression than recession. I myself am beginning to feel a sense of despair mixed with nausea at the sense that we really are headed into a period of extraordinary turmoil and uncertainty. The health of this nation's banking system, well at least the major name institutions, is clearly terminal, and to the extent that the the Central Bank and the Treasury have allowed themselves to be anchored to the dying financial mass, the entire economic ship of state is in imminent danger of taking on the appearance of something desperately clawing with bloodied fingers and bruised hands to the jagged, abrasive edge of a very steep cliff

Meanwhile, the new executive is led by a genial, intelligent, and at times even inspiring young politician who, lamentably, due to temperament and experience, is probably out of his depth at a time when the nation can ill afford a leader who is not extraordinarily able.

I think the next stage of the ever growing national debacle will involve events that we have thus far, at least nominally, averted. These events will include large institutional failures and market shutdowns of one kind or another, and will likely cause widespread social panic the likes of which we have not yet experienced and which will prove in chilling fashion that the authorities are themselves vastly overwhelmed.