by T. Anthony Michael
Posted 26 January 2009
THE FOUR HORSEMEN of 2009 herald the Death Knell of “Free Market” Capitalism
THE GLOBAL MONEY MATRIX, WORLDWIDE FINANCIAL ARCHITECTURE and planetary economic landscape most closely resemble the proverbial House of Cards in the form of a Pyramid-Ponzi scheme superstructure built on quicksand. Therefore, any sober and sane inhabitant of planet Earth would only want to be rid of it all. And that’s exactly what the FOUR HORSEMEN of 2009, 2010, and beyond, aim to do. Trample it all under, so that we may finally be rid of it all.
Why the FOUR HORSEMEN, and just who, or what, are they? The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse quite aptly resembles the forces that have already been “let loose upon the land”. Their names are listed below, and the challenges and adversities that will accompany each of them will last well into the next decade baring deus ex machina.
I ECONOMIC ARMAGEDDON
II FINANCIAL APOCALYPSE
III MONETARY MELTDOWN
IV FISCAL COLLAPSE
The hooves of these FOUR HORSEMEN will be felt in every corner of the globe, as each of them knows no boundaries and has been empowered to act with complete impunity. They know neither rich nor poor, neither strong nor weak, neither clever nor dull. The HORSEMEN will spare nothing, and no one, in their zeal to completely level a multi-millennia old system that has brought so much pain and suffering, wreck and ruin, trial and tribulation, to the masses of the world. Every continent, nation, state and province, city and county, village and town will be profoundly affected and fundamentally altered… forever.
By what names are their HORSES known?
We all know the names of these horses, as their hooves have become louder and louder with each passing month of 2008 and 2009. They are also known as the four agents of economic, financial and monetary destruction, since by their very destiny, calamity and catastrophe are all they have ever wrought upon the earth, and wreaked upon humankind. The names emblazoned on their saddles are as follows:
Let’s take a closer look at these four bucking broncos before they completely break out of the rodeo pit. Each of them alone may appear to be fairly harmless, but when married up with their cruel and ruthless horsemen, they take on a wholly different temperament.
I. DEVALUATION OF THE DOLLAR; DEMISE OF THE DOLLAR AS RESERVE CURRENCY; DEATH OF GLOBAL DOLLAR DOMINANCE
Of course, the perfect storm within the Perfect Storm can be easily identified as the inevitable devaluation, and eventual collapse, of the once Almighty Dollar. Inasmuch as it has functioned as the primary reserve currency for the world, it is quite easy to understand the many negative ramifications of its rapid demise. As nation after nation has let it go on as a means of exchange, the ultimate effects on the US currency can best be described as “that giant sucking sound”. However, the real problem with this giant sucking sound is not just the effects on the US DOLLAR , but that it will be deafening to hear throughout the economies of the world.
The US Dollar interpenetrates not only the financial structure of the industrialized nations, but also the many economies of the 3 rd world, so that its fall will serve to radically undermine the entire worldwide financial architecture. “Too big to fail” simply has no relevance anymore now that this genie is out of the bottle. Just ask Iran, or Venezuela, or China, or Russia, or Dubai, or Ecuador, or Bolivia. Or any of the many other nations just waiting for the right moment to break free from this monetary yoke. Sorry to tell you, but the dollar has now caused so much damage throughout the land that it can’t fail soon enough. And the longer it is artificially propped up, and forcefully kept in place, the more damage it will ultimately do.
The ‘Almighty’ do not die very easily, as we have seen with this note – um – dollar . Just look at what happened to Iraq when they attempted to decouple their oil exportation business from the US dollar. Their expressed intentions to follow through on this initiative in 2001 brought them a foretaste of armegeddon – US style. Likewise, the establishment of the Iranian Oil Bourse has brought a similar curse upon that country, with even the same false accusations being leveled at them as a pretext to military invasion, and a future oil industry takeover. Of course, what further inflamed this tension between those committed to global dollar dominance and those wishing to be free of its tyranny was Iran’s request to be paid in non-dollar currencies by all of its petroleum customers. Not quite sure if they deserve an ‘A’ for audacity, an ‘F’ for foolhardiness, or both. Nevertheless, they are doing what is best for the world by breaking free from the planetary plantation and the $$$ master. Quite courageously, they have set a GREAT example for the rest of us dollar addicts, debt slaves and derivative junkies.
The crux of this issue does lie in the fact that the Federal Reserve Bank is nothing but a printing press. The FED can continue to print its Federal Reserve Notes all day long, exactly as it has done for decades; however, history is replete with similar printing presses of money, and they all have the very same destiny. As a matter of fact, fiat money by any name, or run by any game in town, can only produce one outcome in the end – complete and total degradation of the nation’s currency, and eventually its financial architecture and economic infrastructure. Welcome to the USA (and UK ) in 2009!
It is truly shocking that so many businesses (privately held companies & public corporations), managed funds (pension funds, mutual funds, hedge funds, trust funds, sovereign wealth funds, etc.), governmental entities (villages, towns, cities, counties, states, provinces and nations) and people everywhere, both smart and stupid, bought into this game. Of course the game of GREED knows no bounds or limits, and certainly crosses through all socioeconomic barriers with the greatest of ease. The practitioners of greed neither adhere to the generally accepted principles of ethics and fair play, or sound business practice and accounting methodology. Nor do they hold in high regard the philosophical bulwarks of Western civilization – reason, common sense or even sanity, for that matter.
Particularly since the 1990’s, the dollar was systematically shoved down the world’s throat whether it was wanted or not. The greedy accepted it with gleeful and wanton abandon; the wise did all they could to minimize their exposure to it. In the end, it will be known as the poisonous seed (read GMO) of corrupt, corporate, crony capitalism that was planted so far and wide that not a living thing could claim to be untouched by the fruit of it’s tree.
The long awaited DEATH of the Almighty Dollar is finally here, my friends. Oh, yes, the devaluation process will speed up and slow down, and slow down and speed up, but, in the end, the result will be the very same. It will soon be time to hold a hasty wake, and even hastier funeral service, before this monster tries to come back to life.
DISCLAIMER: We bear no grudge against the original US dollar that was backed by the gold standard. We have no quarrel with the US Government (with the exception of the outgoing and incoming administrations), and we harbor only good will toward the American people.
It is the Federal Reserve Note that is the object of our scorn and ridicule. Likewise, it is the Federal Reserve System that deserves our condemnation and completely justifiable criticism. Why? Because the Federal Reserve Bank (FED) is not legitimate. It is not a properly constituted or legislated organ of government, and is actually a privately owned consortium of banking agents whose ownership is more foreign than domestic. The FED is legally unfit to conduct business on behalf of the American people since, as a private entity, it lacks the congressional oversight necessary when appropriated funds have been allocated by the legislative branch of government. The printing presses of the FED produce notes – as in promissory notes – which are nothing but instruments of indebtedness for all who possess them. Not too unlike credit cards, actually. Therefore, the money that it prints is counterfeit. Is it surprising that an international, privately owned crime syndicate, which issues fake money, would be the biggest player in the worldwide funny money monopoly game that is bringing the world of commerce/finance/business to a virtual standstill? We are talking about the greatest financial crisis in recorded history, you know! The FED is institutional Public Enemy number one, and responsible for this multi-decade crime spree.
II. DESTRUCTION OF DEBT; DESTRUCTION BY DEBT; DEFAULT ON DOLLAR BASED DEBT
Here’s a horse that’s already broken loose and kicked over ‘half’ the public and private sectors of the world. Their initial plan was to simply transform (read destroy) the debt, if you will. We all know very well by now just one of their many schemes – hide it by repackaging it, and then somehow convert it into securities (CDO’s). That’s one plan that really screwed things up. Of course this little scam began with the whole sub prime mortgage fiasco. Sub Prime! Questionable adjustible rate mortgages granted by dubious mortgage lenders to unqualified mortgage applicants. Really brilliant! Then they sold the CDO’s all over the world as triple class AAA “securities” that would round out a conservative investment strategy like the portfolio that was administered (and subsequently decimated by CDO’s) by the town of Narvik, Norway.
The bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers with debts totaling $613 billion is perhaps the greatest example of what’s around the corner. The subsequent unraveling of this single bankruptcy has yet to be felt in all the places where 613 billion dollars are owed. It represents an amount that is still too staggering to comprehend, and yet there have been others since, and many more to follow. The absorption of Merrill Lynch by Bank of America, as well as the purchase of Wachovia by Citibank, are only a couple. However, AIG is perhaps the biggest sleeper of them all in this debt limbo only because of how it intermeshes with so many other businesses, countries, corporations, industries, banks, etc. Insurance, you know, is everywhere. Required to do business, everywhere. And the way AIG wound itself around so many enterprises makes its total exposure, in all of its many and varied forms, one of the most serious debt bombs in town. Whenever you mix ‘unheard of risk’ with the insurance industry, you know you’re playing with fire. Watch for this pyrotechnic display very closely; it will dwarf those of last year’s Olympic opening in China .
Even though this ‘pandora’s box’ has been open for quite some time, the DEBT piece of this current phase of capitalism eating itself is often conveniently unacknowledged, or casually underestimated, or altogether overlooked. For several months now, there are massive, unprecedented multi-billion dollar writedowns (and writeoffs) by the ‘blue chips’ of the banking and investment world. Likewise, many formerly solid companies have gone into the debt divestment business faster than you can say bankruptcy. Massive corporations with humongous debt loads are acquiring huge corporations with gargantuan liabilities. The bigger the debt burden, the quicker a suitor is found, and then they’re hitched without so much as a honeymoon. We always thought that a dowry went in the opposite direction. You know, it’s about what you bring to the marriage (read deal), not what you take away, that makes you attractive.
And we haven’t even discussed the specter of the consumer debt bubble burst, or the anticipated fallout from its ensuing mushroom cloud. When you add this looming scenario to the myriad toxic waste sites of incorporated debt, innumerable landfills of national and governmental debt, and countless hazardous waste dumps of securitized mortgages, you begin to see that the entire economic landscape has become one huge, unbroken disposal area with the typical assortment of garbage dumps, junkyards and recycling stations to handle any type of debt you want to get rid of. The brokerage houses ultimately became transfer stations for all of this financial refuse. Is it any wonder that they all had to disappear, and did so in the span of a just a few months? The smell coming from Wall Street was getting worse than the foul odors in a Neapolitan neighborhood.
Of course the real megilla in regard to DEBT concerns the looming and inevitable default on the US debt owed around the world. How can this possibly be stopped? It really does represent a conspiracy of circumstances that is so complicated and convoluted that even someone in the know would be hard pressed to present a credible case as to how this titanic will sink in one brief moment of time. So many forces have been silently at work to ensure that this financial cataclysm takes place that it defies the imagination. For one, who has not played with the fire known as US Treasuries, be they bills, bonds, notes or securities? They are the most ubiquitous of their kind, and been produced in the greatest amount, for a long, long time, to finance LOTS of wars. And Uncle Sam, don’t you know, is the greatest salesman of all time. He can sell cow paddies as delectable, sumptuous caviar, and probably has done so at least once or twice.
Not only did the Iraq war drain the US Treasury that had nothing left to drain, but the same war only stirred up fiercely anti-American sentiment abroad – everywhere! The wholly illegitimate war in Afghanistan didn’t help matters much either. When feelings run this strong, it is much easier for the spectator nations of the world to cheer on the slow motion collapse of the proverbial global bully, even when it is may not appear to be in their best interest. Sounds crazy, but just take a look at the millions of American voters who consistently vote against their own interest each and every election cycle. Can you believe that, in the so-called American democracy, the debt slaves vote for their plantation masters year after year, and even contribute their hard earned money which further guarantees their continued enslavement? No wonder it’s still called the American Experiment since we, still today, make such compliant and docile guinea pigs.
Now we know that the DEBT bomb has always been a major part of the their strategy. Therefore, the only conclusion one could reach is that the decision-makers, as well as those who implemented them, knew that these, and other wars in the works, would break the country by the newly incurred debt. The extremely sad piece of this story is that it was actually some of the traditional adversaries of the USA who chose to finance these illegal, immoral and highly offensive wars. This little fact will make it that much easier for the US Corp to default, since the pain will be felt far and wide, especially by those who are considered ‘enemies’. These folks will pay dearly twice – when the dollar goes belly up, and when the US debt goes into default.
III. DEMOLITION BY DERIVATIVES; DISINTEGRATION OF THE DERIVATIVES MARKET; “DERIVATIVE DEATH STAR” IMPLOSION
This is where Wall Street high finance meets the blackjack tables of Las Vegas – both literally and figuratively. This marriage of convenience represents the ultimate fusion of everything that is wrong with the MO of today’s investment bankster and all the ways that the gambling casino is always rigged by the house (aka the guvment). Just as the house fixes every game in town so that it never loses, the fat cats at Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs never walk away from the table without a belly full of fish. Even though manyof their bets fell right through the floor, they still, somehow, feel entitled to multi- billion dollar bailouts. Experts at privatizing profits and socializing losses (and debts), they are. Also, unparalleled in their ability to turn the entire world into one humongous betting parlor.
Derivatives are the real megilla in this whole story. You talk about a wild card – man o man – it doesn’t get any wilder than the card stamped with “D” for DERIVATIVE . This tangled mess has touched every nook and cranny on every continent, in every nation, in every corporation on planet earth. They don’t even know – We don’t even know – No one knows, if the notional value of the total sum of derivative instruments issued worldwide is closer to 500 trillion dollars or, get this, ONE QUADRILLION dollars. Can you imagine the high intensity hawking that had to happen to get to a place of $1,000,000,000,000,000 of high-falutin’ bets? Oh my gosh! All the gambling casinos in Vegas, Atlantic City, and every reservation in the lower 48 put together couldn’t come close to a mere fraction of that number.
The real challenge concerning this megilla was how to make it respectable, and legal, and salable, and acceptable, all at the same time. But somehow they did it. Of course they set this little charade up completely outside the normal framework of: (i) governmental regulation, (ii) monitoring by financial analysts, (iii) legal due diligence, as well as (iv) scrutiny by the financial news media. How many people have even ever heard of a credit default swap, forward rate agreement, or turbo warrant?
We’re talking about the outhouse of the financial industry here, so one must really give them credit for their ability to turn crap into caviar. And then sell it as such, as we mentioned earlier. These crap conversion factories (aka hedge funds) became the ultimate in new age financial alchemy. The hedge fund lab directors somehow managed to transform pure lead into pure gold. Mind you, we’re talking about the proverbial philosopher’s stone, right here, in the midst of the modern financial marketplace. Wonder who the Merlin was that thought up this scheme which will ultimately ensure the downfall of an entire civilization? We know who the Federal Reserve Chairman was that aided and abetted the entire plot. Probably ought to start there and follow the trail back to those that conceived the whole plan, so that we might at least confiscate their piggy banks. Never has the phrase – pigs at the trough – been more apropos.
The reality was, is, and will forever be that this instrument of high finance transformed the entire realm of international finance into a Turkish opium den. Anyone who entered had to be high to get in, and would most assuredly be higher when they left. They all smoked the same crack derivative, could never get enough of it, and, like every addict attempts to do, wanted to turn everyone else onto it. They knew that only through widespread addiction would this habit become institutionally acceptable. And do you know that this ploy worked like a charm! Of course whole national, and regional economies, will never, ever, be the same, just as gambling has always been notorious for bringing total ruination to the home of an addict.
The saddest part of this story concerns the referral effect which ensured that the real pain from this deliberate stratagem would be referred to the worker or company or entrepreneur or office worker or small business owner who really does work for a living. And who, in the process, produces a real good or service untainted by hedge upon hedge, bet upon bet, swap upon swap. For it always is the salt of the earth that becomes the unsuspecting fodder, especially in a perpetual war economy that only know how to sacrifice the “weak” for the benefit of the “strong”.
Here again, demolition by derivatives will prove to be the surest way to bring down virtually every corner, of every floor, of every building, of every financial institution on planet Earth. The derivative casino will go down in history as the most pervasive, unregulated and ‘successful’ gambling establishment of all time. It broke the bank (the FED, the Bank of England among numerous other central banks), busted up the ‘street’ (Wall Street, cobblestones of the City of London among other national financial districts) and wreaked havoc within the US and UK governments among many others throughout Europe, the Pacific Rim, etc. In time it will prove to be the primary reason why whole populations will find themselves broke, busted and disgusted. Truly the Derivative Death Star will soon glow like a supernova for all future generations to gaze upon.
After this “controlled demolition” runs its course the only logical and natural consequence will be the complete disintegration of the worldwide derivatives market. Trust will have been so thoroughly diminished in the wake of so many derivative caused disasters that they will become not only the pariah of the financial world, but also rejected by any and all who can say or spell the word – D E R I V A T I V E .
IV. DEPRESSION BY DOWNWARD DEFLATIONARY SPIRAL; DETERIORATION OF NATIONAL ECONOMIES BY DEFLATION
The planet is hardwired by one, and only one, global money matrix. Although seemingly diverse, there is in reality, only ONE worldwide financial architecture. It has been purposefully designed, fastidiously engineered, painstakingly constructed, and put into place over many centuries, everywhere national economies have been born and died. Likewise, the planetary economic landscape, which once upon a time sat on a fairly seamless and monolithic bedrock, has been shattered and pulverized so much throughout the past hundred years that it is now a mere desert of shifting sands
Since the early 1980’s the US economy began to morph back into the same shape as the one that preceded the Great Depression. Only this time the bubble economy became an amalgam of many more, and much larger, bubbles than in the 1920’s. The dot.com bubble burst at the turn of the century is only a small example of this phenomenon, but also an excellent illustration of what would follow.
The Bubble Burst of 2008, 2009, and 2010 have their roots in the same forces and dynamics of those that contributed to the Crash of ’29. Only this time there exists a conspiracy of circumstances that simply overwhelms the imagination as much as it challenges credulity. For starters the overall economy today is exponentially larger than ’29. The sheer number and variety of financial instruments is likewise so much greater that a meaningful comparison is practically irrelevant. Globalization has created a much more complex world economy that has completely blurred national boundaries, created an imperceptible financial superstructure, as well as an economic infrastructure, which inextricably intertwines the commerce of all nations.
What does all of this have to do with the current depression through a downward deflationary spiral? What isn’t allowed to burst due to inordinately high pressure will inevitably deflate by way of a steady and sometimes quickly accelerating downward spiral. Let’s see now, it starts with decreases in price, which will then lead to lower production, which will cause lower wages that will then translate into lower demand, which will again cause prices to come down even further. This economic vicious cycle, which inevitably occurs when a systemic problem exacerbates it own cause, is merely a protective mechanism that ensures that the entire hopelessly flawed system will ultimately end in failure. And so it has.
Now, all we can do is sit back and watch the relentless erosion of every economy on earth through deflationary downward pressures, and all of its consequent stages of devolution. The fungus of deflation will guarantee that every national economy will deteriorate. This most pernicious variety of deflationary mold is known for the many phases of deterioration it brings upon the host nation, so we know there will be periods of both hyperinflation and stagnation, mini-booms and maxi-busts, commodity-specific buying sprees (e.g. gold) and unprecedented market blowouts, runs on the banks and flights to foreign currencies. In the end, the nations of the world will be thoroughly decimated by the plague known as deflation. The economies of the regional financial unions/economic superstates (e.g. European Union) will be particularly vulnerable to the extent that they chose to play this game of bubble monopoly (see the EURO).
It’s an extremely unfortunate fact of modern economic and financial life that when there is a tremor in the City of London , countries like Iceland get hit with a hundred foot tsunami prior to a 10.0 earthquake. Conversely, when the US sub prime mortgage market tanks, small towns all over the world can go bankrupt, just as small nations can go under, because of their investments in things like CDO’s. When the American consumer stops buying, China has just lost its largest customer, as well as a huge and highly profitable marketplace in which to dump their many toxic wares. This is how national economies are so tightly interwoven in the postmodern age. Because they share the same warp and woof of all that binds them together economically and financially, they will descend together into this GREATEST DEPRESSION of all time.
There is a bright side to this part of the story which is best illustrated by a bit of humor.
We all know that what goes up, must come down. And, we know full well that the bigger they are, the harder they fall. Therefore, in the case of our current planetary Humpty Dumpty sitting – actually teetering – on the wall, we are seeing what is categorically the biggest bubble-head, bubble-belly and bubble-butt in history, all ready to pop when this poor chap takes his great fall. We know it ain’t gonna be pretty, but at least we’ve been assured for many generations that “all the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Humpty together again”.
JUST WHO ARE THESE FOUR HORSEMEN?
Undoubtedly the greatest CON MEN of all time! And their names will be forever indelibly etched and engraved, written and imprinted, digitized and coded in the annals of global criminal history. Their names, of course, are quite familiar to us as follows:
Now it is extremely important to understand, as well as highly instructive, just how these HORSEMEN operate, as well as how such a state of affairs could have evolved. The operative words that well describe the modus operandi of all who had a hand in its creation, once again, begin with “ D ”. The handiwork of those responsible for the creation, maintenance and destruction of the legendary corrupt, corporate, crony capitalist system will eternally be known for its DECEPTION, DUPLICITY, DECEIT and DOUBLE-DEALING. At every level of formulation and implementation of the aforementioned policies were these four dubious characters employed with perfect timing and extraordinary cunning.
From the US Senate to the US House, from the POTUS to the SCOTUS, from the SEC to the FTC, from the Federal Reserve Bank to the Bank of England, from the last of Wall Street Investment Banks to the still standing(?) major Commercial Banks, from the Big Four Auditors to the Big NYC and DC Law Firms, from the K Street Lobbyists to the Military/Industrial Complex, they were all materially invested and substantially involved in this CON job of the millennium. From the NYSE to the NASDAQ, from the Dow Jones to the S&P 500, from the WSJ and NYT and WASHPO to FORBES and FORTUNE and FINANCIAL TIMES, from Bloomberg.com to CNNMoney.com, as well as the rest of Corporate America, they all enthusiastically participated in the making of this bubble of BUBBLES. That’s right, the one that’s now deflating faster than you can say The Hindenburg .
Really, thicker than thieves says it better than anything else in the English language.
So many hands in this cookie jar at once it gives new meaning to sleight of hand, doesn’t it! Really surprising they went through all the effort as the jar has been empty for so many years! One has to really stretch to wrap one’s mind around the degree and profundity of so much intentional fraud, systemwide malfeasance, misappropriation of any fund with value, routine embezzlement of the public purse, outright theft from every retirement fund within reach and looting of any national and corporate treasury in sight. From the US Treasury, to the US taxpayer, from 401K’s to Keough’s and IRA’s, Pensions to Annuities, from CalPERS to NYSLRS, savings accounts to checking accounts, from central banks to piggy banks – nothing has been spared a fleecing by these four very dubious con men. We mean nothing. And if you think something has somehow escaped, it just hasn’t happened yet. Or maybe you haven’t yet figured it out.
You see bubbles, whether dollar, debt or derivative, don’t just happen, and then somehow deflate; they were created by an extraordinary amount of ongoing institutional misrepresentation, incessant prevarication from officialdom and a continuous flow of calculated fabrication from the top level controllers. Wall Street, alone, can be tagged with enormous criminal activity that touches on every aspect of the banking, investment and financial industries.
The degree of market manipulation (stock, bond, commodity, currency, derivative, etc.), insider trading, price fixing, price gouging, executive stock option abuse, securitization of bad debt, setting up rogue investment managers, publishing false prospectus claims, insufficient liquidity to meet investor cash-outs, robbing Peter to pay Paul (illegally mixing funds), etc. is so great as to be inconceivable. Likewise, the Street ‘s penchant for exaggerating (and illegally hyping) profits/revenue streams/income projections/dividend payouts/capital gains and appreciation estimates/business outlooks/product expectations and so on, has become so commonplace that the most serious felonies associated with this behavior have to exceed grand larcenies in excess of a hundred million in order to be prosecuted with the same vigor as jaywalking.
The flip side of this conduct, however, has been responsible for the downfall of many an investor throughout the current bear market. This concerns the willful nondisclosure by your broker of lots of bad corporate news including everything from hidden bad debts to bad management, unreported losses, financial statements prepared with bad accounting, tanking revenues, runaway operating costs, unpredictable energy costs, uncontrollable overhead, debt defaults, loss of lifelong credit ratings, imminent bankruptcies, looming criminal prosecutions, labor unrest and union demands, unpaid taxes, top heavy debt/equity ratios and miniscule return on equity ratios, and on and on. And many of the financial analysts, themselves, are either withholding accurate information or fudging the prepared data in their service as part time shill for their real corporate masters. So oftentimes the brokers don’t even have a chance to get it right.
Since many of these practices became standard operating procedures for the entire brokerage industry over the course of many decades, the very dynamic between broker and investor changed as well. Suffice to say, this relationship changed in such a way that the typical investor became a much more engaged and active player in the game and, therefore, a much more interested and invested party to the process (Remember day traders?). How responsible we are as an investor playing in a game that thrives on an ever ballooning bubble economy remains to be answered. If we buy into the game, are we culpable as well, even if we are to a lesser degree. We’re quick to take our profits, count our days to retirement, check out the IRA balances, add up our quarterly dividends, calculate our annual appreciation, assess the pension plan, and so on, never really contemplating how we ourselves have benefited from, or contributed to, the bubbles. How the bubbles have grown so fast, or why the get rich quick schemes never seem to slacken is rarely considered by the beneficiary during the good times. Truly, the $64,000 question is, and always has been, “Where is all of this unearned money, wealth, income, revenue, appreciation, etc. going to come from in the end?”
The convergence of so many of these co-factors, together with the agenda of the underlying control matrix that runs through all of the financial and commercial capitals of the world, have given rise to the Mega/Ultra/Super BUBBLE of 2009. Add to this mix a past and present Federal Reserve Chairman who both very purposely and deliberately encouraged the formation of one bubble after another – in real estate (residential and commercial), stock, bond & commodities markets (relaxed margin requirements as well as critical regulation), currency and, of course, derivatives, Derivatives, DERIVATIVES.
Through formal and targeted policy adoption, as well as selective policy cancellation, a highly conducive environment was systematically massaged and methodically finessed into place so that ONLY ‘bad’ things could happen. Since this overarching scheme was meticulously sculpted, orchestrated and implemented over a twenty year period, and well after the original bubble should have burst in the first place, one starts to get a sense of proportion and begins to see the enormity of the events that we are facing. This is huge beyond belief, beyond comprehension and beyond the ability/capacity of anyone, any nation or group of nations, any consortium or international body to fix. This is really HUGE!
Has “Free Market” Capitalism already crashed and burned?
We sincerely regret that we paint not a pretty picture through this assessment of the future. In all likelihood, it is a picture that will only get uglier in the short term, especially by the looks of the day to day deteriorating circumstances and developments. Just as our friendly investment broker, Mr Madoff, made off with all the goods and ensured they conveniently found safe haven abroad, so too will many others at the top of the food chain do the same. This is, after all, the last phase of self destructive capitalism eating itself. The dog eat dog world will never have more relevance than now in the upper echelons of global financial decision-making and implementation. Every day seems to bring to light a new drama in the realm of international finance, especially for once highflying investment fund managers and hedge fund crackerjacks.
At the national and regional levels we can point to numerous conflicts as evidence of “Free Market” Capitalism experiencing its final death throes. Certainly the economic warfare being waged against Russia is demonstrative of the desperation of those who would maintain the energy status quo. As is the financial battleground that Iran has found itself on because its oil bourse and oil revenues. Of course, Iceland has already become a victim of this hoity-toity cannibalism having recently been eaten by the UK, just as Ireland, Spain and most of Eastern Europe are about to become victims of the European Union.
Then there is the Dubai Multi-Commodity Center challenging all the traditional commodity exchanges that have been routinely and flagrantly fixing the prices of gold, silver, platinum and the like. Let’s not forget Venezuela and Bolivia and a handful of other South American countries taking on their former North American taskmaster and its corporate thugs. Zimbabwe has surely taken a beating ever since they confiscated the land that was once theirs from the recently evicted British land squatters.
Likewise, Iraq, Sudan, The Congo, and Nigeria have all been the site of violent confrontations between those who want resources by force and those who actually possess them. How could we ignore the ‘disaster capitalism’ acting out in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Thailand, Burma, and Indonesia? Virtually every nation in the Caucasus, as well as the other former Soviet republics, have likewise come under fire for either their (un)fortunate location or something of value they sit upon. Even Mexico, like Columbia, has had a very rough time lately in its attempts to secure and efficiently transport the various commodities that comprise the illegal drug trade. What just happened in Gaza is a glaring example of what certain states will do for more land. The whole of Palestine , of course, has become the victim of a modern day land grab that is at the very heart of the ‘free market’ philosophy.
The real war, however, is the oil and gas revolution that’s been simmering everywhere lately, especially between Saudi Arabia/Iran (OPEC) and the Anglo-American juggernaut. The skirmishes on this battlefield have been fast and furious regarding oil pricing, supply, transport, stockpiling and dwindling demand. It may very well turn out to be the shot heard around the world if it breaks out in the open like the recent conflict between Russia, the Ukraine and the European Union.
The slaughter in South Ossetia by Georgia was just a small example of just how volatile and precarious things have become throughout the worldwide geo-political realm. It also underscores just how much self restraint will be required by the Russians to avoid a full blown theatre of war from developing over competition for natural gas supplies and transport pipelines. Ditto for the Iranians, only for oil in their case. No one can deny that these are heady times!
Just how bad will it get? Well, since many of the practices of our current fascist corpocracy, as well as the kleptocratic oligarghy, find their roots in Imperial Rome, we might look there to see what might lie around the corner here, that is, if they are allowed to go unchecked. As long as they continue to define free market as free and unfettered for themselves, but at a cost – often severe – for everyone else, there will be unparalleled friction and great conflict. The good news is that we are now at the end of a long and arduous age, and at a point on the evolutionary spiral where there is significantly less karmic slack – for each and every global citizen. Therefore, the divide and conquer strategy will not only no longer work, it will boomerang on all who attempt to use it to their advantage.
There will undoubtedly be some feedback/discussion about whether this portrayal has a tinge of doom and gloom. By no means is this the author’s intention. But, let’s face it, sometimes a reality show can be quite difficult to watch, except that this is not a reality show, it’s a very serious reality check. Therefore, we would like to pose the following question, especially for the fainthearted, for serious consideration:
When you’re watching an 18 wheeler, with a supposed full payload of newly minted gold that was switched in a double cross with gold painted lead bars, barreling down a very steep and winding mountainside road, and the steering wheel is broken, the brake lines have been cut, the windshield’s been shattered, 16 of 18 wheels have come off, the driver has just suffered massive cardiac arrest and the guy riding shotgun has just finished his 4 th six pack… and now it’s careening toward a cliff side overlooking a deep, dark chasm. I think we all get the picture, don’t we?!