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Monday, April 18, 2011

31 months and counting-- The way things are

It has now been 31 months since Sept 2008 when Lehman Brothers took the rest of the stock market down.  And it has been a most frustrating 31 months to be sure.  

No major banker or anyone responsible for the ongoing global recession has been arrested or brought to justice in any way...

Not a single government policy of any nation around the globe has been implemented to help working people.. or the newly jobless.. or the poor.

Not a single policy has even been publicly debated as to how to make the causers of the financial melee pay the brunt of the globally financial mess they caused.

And with the exception of a few Arab countries and scattered protests here & there in various parts of Europe, there's been no successful or coordinated effort to scare governments into reversing economic and social policies.

What the various populations around the globe have been forced to do beyond accepting rising food and fuel prices and accepting prolonged joblessness are basically two things- forced to embrace escapism and to become fearful.

~ Part Jedi/part Lord of Rings/part WoW- Now he knows How to Escape..

It is natural for people to seek out pleasurable diversions like listening to music, watching television..  People work hard and have busy days, and desire to unwind from it all.  The problem becomes when that desire for entertainment becomes escapism. And even worse, targeting the hatred and fury one feels towards their leadership and the system on the whole, on inconsequential things like a referee at a football match (or NFL game in the US).

Some will tell you it is healthy to release the 'steam', and yes that is true- but if 'A' is causing all your tension, how does screaming and yelling at 'B' prevent those feelings of anger from continuing?  The cause of the misery is still doing as it wishes..

While distractions are something individuals pursue on their own, fear is something which for the most part is forced upon you by the government via the media.  Every news story is make-believe 'drama'-  Will Greece default?  Will Portugal accept a bailout?  Will the Bush tax cuts be extended?  Will the US raise its debt ceiling?  On and on.. fear mixed with meaningless debate.

And ultimately everything in this contrived charade gets resolved for the best possible result for bankers, corporations and investors.  Fear keeps people in line-  fear of terror-- fear of losing your job or your unemployment benefits..  fear of losing remaining liberties and freedoms while governments, even elected ones stifle and suffocate your individualism.

~ Nike factory in Asia.. earing $1/day making $100 'Air Jordans'

It is important the reader understand everyone's roles in the global economy because knowing the part we all play,allows you to know how to alter things.  And be sure, in this 'game'- we of all nations are the same.

The world is run by bankers.  They lend to everyone.. to nations, to businesses, individuals and other banks.  Everything in the great economic configuration is keyed upon credit and debt.   Without lendees, there can be no lenders and no debt, thus no capital is created.   Now we, as people are expected by bankers to fulfill two basic roles-  work and consume.

Optimally a good 'customer' (as banks call individuals) is one who's wants & needs exceed his/her budget.  You have enough $$ to make payments on things you want, just never generate enough money to buy the things you desire outright.

Now nations are no different than individuals-- they are called 'customers' as well.  And the best 'customer'   spends and borrows more than it brings in.  And like personal debt, the higher the amount owed, the more monthly payments are expected, the higher the interest rate and the lower principle which is paid on the debt.  

Now when governments get into a really bad fix, they usually do one or a combo of three things.. raise taxes, cut spending and go to war.   Politicians much prefer raising taxes on the poor and working classes, than to themselves.  So they embrace higher sales taxes (or Value Added Taxes in Europe) so that everyone pays more instead of just the obscenely rich.  Politicians, particularly conservative ones, love cutting social services and benefits- any program that makes life easier for the poor, aged and infirmed.

The last thing governments do is they go to war--  war stimulates the economy, especially the US economy. For instance when the government spends $100 billion a month on now 3 wars, that money is circulated domestically- tanks, ships, planes, etc are built at home..  tens of thousands of American jobs created or sustained to build the armaments and weapons and bullets.  And don't forget hundreds of thousands of mostly poor Americans getting paid to wear the uniform fight and die with the enticement of free college, who might otherwise be getting welfare payments at home.

If the US had no wars to fight, and no large Defense budget by extension, it is fair to say the US economy would be in a depression.  As it is, its just in a deep, lingering recession.

Nations around the world are in very bad economic situations that continue to deteriorate because they refuse to do the one thing necessary to save themselves and their populace from decades of austerity pain...   


~ "La vida es muy buena ahora"  (Life is very good now)

Argentina defaulted in 1999-- did the nation crumble?  No   The creditors and investors who profited from Argentina's financial miseries for decades had to take a deserved 'haircut'. They didn't get to recoup 100 cents on the dollar like the US, Britain, and other western nations allowed.  Argentina did struggle for about 5years but then the global banks were more than happy to re-invest, this time at terms more favorable to the nation.

Greece, Ireland, Portugal..  they All should have defaulted and saved their peoples' and their children generations of economic pain.   

The US should default to..  they won't.. but they should..

For the same reason it took the US 11 years to fight the Vietnam conflict, its the same reason American politicians will sell its people down a river of economic despair as it continues to pay on a $14+ Trillion dollar debt..   stupid John Wayne-like pride and egotism.

31 months and counting..  

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