Tuesday, May 24, 2016

NIRP Canceled!

No sooner had I published last week’s post on the dire need for negative interest rates than Federal Reserve mouthpieces started intoning in unison on the need to “normalize” rates. Normal, mind you, means a positive interest rate, not negative—the opposite of what I had facetiously recommended. To quote the inimitable Lee Camp, “So this means, if I just talk about something, it gets cancelled?” He was referring to exit polling at Democratic primaries being canceled no sooner than he pointed out that the very large discrepancy between the exit polls and the official results proves that the voting machines are being hacked to favor Hillary Clinton. For the sake of those of you a bit slow on the uptake, what this means is this: if you vote in the Democratic primary, and you vote for Bernie Sanders, then—congratulations!—you may have just voted for Hillary. And you will never know the truth because the Democratic party machinery is so wonderfully opaque. I could have said “corrupt” instead of “opaque,” but “opaque” sounds more poetic.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Please note...

The reason I edit, typeset and publish books by promising new authors is that I want you to read them. And to do that you have to buy them. Someday soon these excerpts will stop, and then, unless you buy the books and read them, you will end up with half-baked thoughts in your heads. Enough said. Please click on the images below.


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Negative Interest Rate Gap

Back in the early 1980s the US economy was experiencing stagflation: a stagnant economy and an inflating currency. Paul Volcker, who at the time was Chairman of the Federal Reserve, took a decisive step and raised the Federal Funds Rate, which determines the rate at which most other economic players get to borrow, to 18%, freezing out inflation. This was a bold step, not without negative consequences, but it did get inflation under control and, after a while, the US economy stopped stagnating.

Well, not quite. Wages didn’t stop stagnating; they’ve been stagnant ever since. But the fortunes of the 1% of the richest Americans have certainly improved nicely! Moreover, the US economy grew quite a bit since that time. Of course, most of this growth came at the expense of staggering structural deficits and an explosion of indebtedness at every level, but so what? Sure, the national debt went exponential and the government’s unfunded liabilities are now over $200 trillion, but that’s OK. You just have to like debt. Keep saying to yourself: “Debt is good!” Because if everyone started thinking that debt is bad, then the entire financial house of cards would implode and we would be left with nothing.

Bureaucratic Insanity: The Frantic Search for Meaning

In this excerpt from his new book, Bureaucratic Insanity: The American Bureaucrat’s Descent into Madness, Sean Kerrigan notes that institutional violence isn’t just limited to schools and offices. In their frantic search for meaning, many Americans have turned into bloodthirsty maniacs, pushing for more wars abroad and even nuclear war that would obliterate them.

***

In one of his final HBO specials, Life is Worth Losing, comedian George Carlin explained that, in a sense, destruction gave him joy. He said:
I have absolutely no sympathy for human beings whatsoever. None. And no matter what kind of problem humans are facing, whether it’s natural or man-made, I always hope it gets worse.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Interview on the New Lifeboat Hour

Carolyn Baker took over this radio show from Mike Ruppert (RIP), did it on PRN for a while, and has recently struck out on her own, turning it into a pure podcast.

In this episode we discuss all sorts of things: economic collapse, the presidential election farce, climate upheaval and much else. Please tune in and have a listen.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Bureaucratic Insanity: Free to be Slaves

Schools in America today are less concerned about the overall welfare of students than they are with making sure that they obey all the rules, no matter how pointless, and produce good test scores. The emphasis on mindless obedience and rote learning prepares them for dehumanizing office work, where employers don’t even try to pretend that they care about the welfare of their workers. Instead, they shame them for taking vacation time and force them to work overtime for free. Employers and school administrators only care about what they can produce: children are treated no differently from widgets, and employees are treated no differently from robots.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Because Capitalism

When Barack Obama was elected President of the United States in 2008 this was treated as a landmark event. He presented himself as the underdog, an outsider from a minority background, who spoke eloquently about a fairer society, an end to war in the Middle East, transparency in government and a green future. His speeches promised “change” and “hope,” and voters were infused with optimism. Eight years later a fair assessment of his efforts is that they were hardly any better than George W. Bush’s.

In the current election cycle there are two new candidates pledging hope and change: Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. Occupying opposite corners, they have painted pictures of two very different futures for the United States: democratic socialist and cult-of-personality capitalist.

Their campaign speeches are interesting to observe. In trying to make sense of their success, particularly in the case of Trump, it is apparent that the idea of a savior is infectious and appealing.

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

The Voting Delusion

This November, I heartily encourage all Americans to exercise their civic duty by going to the polls and voting for one of the dignified Presidential candidates that have amazed us this election cycle with their wisdom and compassion... not!

Unfortunately, this is not a laughing matter. A large segment of the U.S. population is now very aware of the fact that our political and economic systems have become totally corrupt. And yet these knowledgeable people still cling to the delusion that this tragic state of affairs can be changed by voting.

Every once in a while I gently attempt to discuss this topic in “polite company.” It is astonishing how ferociously these “polite” people defend the myth of the ballot box. And so I will try to disabuse these well-meaning citizens from this idealistic concept, which has been relentlessly programmed into us since grammar school. I assure you that I received the same brainwashing, and I once believed in the power and nobility of casting ballots. And indeed, voting probably did “make a difference” at one time.

But the world of power politics has changed drastically. I contend that voting is not just meaningless in our present situation, but that it is actually harmful. That is a pretty bold and provocative statement, but I will now do my best to defend this contrarian belief. I will attempt to do so in a concise but comprehensive manner.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

150-Strong: A Pathway to a Different Future – Serialisation Part 3

“The more laws and commands there are,
the more thieves and robbers there will be.” Lao Tzu
150-STRONG

Information leaked in the Panama Papers about the use of tax havens certainly supports this statement! Under the cover of the law thieves and robbers have been maintaining their privilege and ultra-wealth by being tricky. Many of them are leaders – politicians, monarchs and business executives. “I have done nothing illegal,” they say as their souls disappear a little further into a fog. And from the germ of their example a cancer grows.

Rules work best when they are kept to a minimum.

This I have seen illustrated in the context of the business I am involved in. We are a construction company employing approximately 150 people, a mix from all walks of life – old friends, relatives of workers who needed a job, qualified recruits who fitted the mold, troubled youth recommended by the courts as worthy of a second chance, odd bods and colorful characters who fell into each others' orbits. Some are very skilled and others developing.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Help the world learn about #bureaucraticinsanity

The types of stories reported in Sean Kerrigan's book Bureaucratic Insanity are extremely common, in schools, government and in workplaces. Every week another story emerges in the media of someone being railroaded by the insane bureaucrats that infest the system. But that's just the media; if they reported every such story, they would have no time left over for anything else. And so most people continue to delude themselves that this is all business as usual, nothing special, certainly nothing utterly insane going on.

But it is in your power to change that: if you tweet out the hashtag

#bureaucraticinsanity 

along with a short summary of any event you experience, witness or become aware of that has an element of "bureaucratic insanity" in it, that would drive traffic to the term, and to Sean's book. And then more people will learn what's happened to their country, and what's about to happen to them. For my part, I promise to follow the hashtag, sort through the tweets and publish Best of Bureaucratic Insanity compilations on this very blog.

Rest assured, this problem is a serious, widespread, medical issue, but no men in white suits will rush to your rescue, subdue insane American bureaucrats, put them in restraints and haul them off to the funny farm. No, you will have to deal with them yourselves—before they deal with you! And the first step in doing so is to find out who they are and what damage they are causing.

Here's a video clip from RT's show Redacted Tonight, where Lee Camp talks about grandparents imprisoned for failing to return to the county public library a Dr. Seuss book they took out for a grandchild and other such events that have come to typify contemporary America.