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Thursday, 29 May 2014

Golden Jackass: BRICS Gold Source and Belgium Bulge

The detection of the rapid rise in USTreasury Bonds in the Belgium official central bank account has
aroused broad and deep suspicions. Finally an open sore is visible that cannot be explained away easily. It first appeared a couple months ago. The initial knee-jerk reaction was that the USFed was colluding with the Euro Central Bank to hide heavy bond monetized purchases in New York, in effect demonstrating the Jackass point that the QE volume was huge, that the Bernanke and Yellen Fed were.

Next the evidence pointed to Russia having embarked on a significant dump of USTBonds using the proxy of EuroClear. It all made so much sense, the Russian account having declined in roughly the same volume as the Belgium account rose. Be sure to know that tiny Belgium has a rather notable current account deficit, no surplus funds to invest. Belgium has a GDP of $480 billion, the bulge fast approaching the size of their entire economy. Their chief export is tied closely to the hot air emanating from the EU Commission and Parliament, neither body possessing a scintilla of global integrity.

The question must be raised whether a hidden party has joined Russiain the dumping process. It could be that an angry Saudi Arabia has decided to discharge large tracts of USTBonds, or maybe Iran in a new financial war flank attack. Perhaps even China, using its Hong Kongwindow, has a reverse flow with Gold bullion entering and USTBonds exiting in payment. The Dollar empire has been in a middle stage of collapse with QE3 blessed and the Taper a mere fiction, sustained by creative lies.
Clearly, the Belgium Bulge indicates a late stage of collapse. The game is fast changing, using big hidden channels in the monetary war. Motives are easy to identify. Russia is complying with the sanctions, removing funds in the face of frozen accounts and obstructed channels. The Saudis are another newly designated public enemy of the United States, which always prefers to maintain a list of enemy states to keep the fascist war machine humming. The Saudis might be discharging vast tracts of USTBonds after learning that the London bankers stealing their Gold.
The latest pressures with Credit Suisse and even BNP Paribas to admit guilt has an odor about it. The USGovt is forcing merger with UBS and Societe Generale respectively, likely to enable easier Saudi gold account pilferage, a US fascist specialty. The ultimate vengeance by Saudi will be divestiture of USTBonds and full abandonment of the USDollar, followed by complete adoption of the Chinese Yuan and protectorate role. The Saudis soon will no longer have a conformity to the USDollar linkage to oil sales. The entire OPEC bloc will follow in a devastating blow to the USDollar. Later the final blow from that region of the world would be the formation and launch of the gold-backed Gulf Dinar. These steps would all be seen as declaration of war against US interests (common term used). The death of the Petro-Dollar might have a Saudi imprint in Belgium. Notice the Belgium Bulge Billboard, the beginning of their USTBond holding rise in November 2013 and unmistakably in December 2013 (at $257bn). It is a giant Red Herring in March at $381bn. When it surpasses half a $trillion, perhaps it will be a daily point of controversial debate.

Lies, propaganda, and outright deception are the game played. Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European counsel, stated in a weekly Belgian magazine his viewpoint regarding the Ukrainian rebellion. He wrote, "The revolt at Kiev in February 2014 came from the Ukrainian people themselves, sort of a phenomenon of civilization, not caused by a political project." Such drivel that avoids the entire Langley and Soros role with paid mercenaries to conduct the operation, even to relieve Kiev of its 33 tons of central bank gold in the wee hours of the night under cover of darkness, using masks, and telling the airport tower to back off. Expect Van Rompuy to be on the defensive soon, even ousted. These guys on the EU helm are dirty. When President of Portugal, EU honcho Barraso enabled the removal of over 60% of the Portuguese central bank gold supply. These guys are dirty and work for the fascist cabal.

PLAIN VANILLA INTERPRETATION

The backside decline elsewhere across major central banks has attracted bad attention. The world is dumping USGovt debt, as they reduce USTBonds held in portfolios in both official accounts and corporate accounts. Ridding themselves altogether of the toxic bonds will require years and a likely global conference on debt restructure. Recall the 2008 forecast of USGovt debt default. A major hubbub began last March, two months ago, when total USFed custody holdings plunged by a record $104.5 billion. Attention was raised, bad attention, unwanted attention, a new nasty wrinkle in the global monetary war over control of money and creation of false wealth. The Treasury Investment Capital report indicated that Russia indeed dumped a record $26 billion in January, equal to 20% of all of its holdings, bringing its post-March total to just over $100 billion. The Belgians and Russians each have red herrings of opposite type. Their account has not been lower since the Lehman crisis. The Belgium site enjoyed a ripe $40bn rise in USTreasurys held, hardly from the country's non-existent trade surplus. Once again, the decline in Russian account is offset by rise in Belgian account. The intrepid Zero Hedge journal has been covering the story extensively, as always on the leading edge. Russia is complying with the sanctions theme, and probably continued past the March reading in still high volume. However, there is much more to the Belgium Bulge story.

GREY AREA INTERPRETATION

To be sure, one must view the Bulge with a perspective in battle terms. No doubt, Belgium is taking bonds being privately placed, with some measure of orchestrated movement by the USFed, Wall Street, andLondon banks. We are seeing the Russian dumping through secondaries and proxies, with a possible usage of swap market in reinforcement. Overt dumping would be the equivalent of a declaration of war. The usage of secondaries enables some quasi deniability. World monetary war has taken a quantum jump up in intensity and danger. More movement is seen in recent TIC Reports, with various nations likeLuxembourg, Switzerland, and Caribbean Centers pushing up on USTBond holdings. Many are USFed partners lending a hand using hidey holes to conceal QE hidden volumes.

JPMorgan & Goldman Sachs are the duo most active in hidden dark pools, often using the Exchange Stabilization Fund to clean up the mess and hide the trails. A long shot is that the Dastardly Duo might have a problem with (say) $100bn in USTBonds stuffed on their balance sheets. They might wish to conceal the cancerous bloat, possibly supporting their own Interest Rate Swap position. The swaps have a floating element but also a stake in the ground. To be sure, no entity could step in to buy them without another round of QE, as in QE4. The focus by the alternative media is on the buyer's identity, instead of what is the purpose of these USTBonds being held at the EuroClear in Belgium. The simple hypothesis stated in the previous story does not pass the deeper reality tests. A different purpose is involved, and the size meant that it was a giant player, like a sovereign entity.

We could be seeing some surfacing evidence of the gigantic London Whale losses, estimated by the Voice in summer 2012 to be in excess of $100 billion. The Jackass reported on the event two years ago. Perhaps part of the Belgium Bulge is their position gone out of control, mixed in with the Russian borscht soup. They have strong motive to conceal the true gigantic extent of London Whale losses through the JPM CIO investment office.
The scoop in London is that at least two banker murders were to cover up the London Whale revelations on staggering loss volumes. Some Swiss insurance firm murders might be interwoven, if insurance came in the form of Credit Default Swap contracts. The ties from Swiss RE to JPMorgan are clear, as $1 billion letters of credit between the two giant firms leave trails. As footnote, both firms have a firm hand in the 911 event and its scummy financial background, like a third building full of data being demolished in theWorld Trade Center complex.

Another factor must be considered as part of the Belgium Bulge. A newLondon source (also a Hat Trick Letter client) has noticed an anomaly. The word has that Russia, China, Japan, Taiwan, and Ireland have cut deals to move USTreasury holdings to Belgium via the EuroClear. The finger of suspicion comes from thorough digestion of the TIC Reports and other USTreasury data. Perhaps some powerful combination of factors such as risk of sanctions, freezing their assets, and perhaps the inability to move dollars from international jurisdictions commencing around July. 
The Basel III restrictions might cause some unintended backlash and bulges. Individual designated mainstream nations are stepping forward to serve in proxy roles. The complexity of USTreasury holdings and their location and also reliability of data just muddies the waters even more. So Belgium might be a repository for funds at risk, from nations dealing with expected obstructions. One should never lose sight of the fact that the USTreasury Bond complex, tied at the hip with chronic annual $1 trillion USGovt deficits, funding the endless war campaigns, with all its bond monetization by the USFed to sustain its bubble pressures, with all the major central bank support to keep it afloat, with all its reserves held in foreign bank systems, together with the vast array of hidden derivative contracts, is the biggest asset bubble in the history of mankind. Its collapse will have numerous confusing symptoms, and be explained by as many lies.

Nothing is definitive, but many are the potential sources, indicative of broadening crisis. Thus the Belgium Bulge. A basic query by the observers. One must ask why the tens of $billions in USTreasury sales were not executed and cleared via the USFed's official National Book Entry System (NBES), designed specifically for its custodial customers. Instead, the sales were done through the EuroClear securities clearing system, which is based in Brussels Belgium. Bear in mind that the Deutsche Borse has its own parallel ClearStream house for potential proxy abuse.

BRICS NATIONS SOURCE GOLD BULLION

Consider a very different story, a hypothesis in jump shift that seems as credible as disruptive. The Belgium Bulge Billboard might instead show posted USTreasuy Bonds as collateral to meet a gigantic margin call for a gigantic gold contract position, possibly to set up the gigantic vaults for BRICS central bank gold reserves, functioning in support of the new Gold Trade Standard. The transition might be bumpy. The position might be mixed with redemption demands for reserves held in Intl Monetary Fund accounts, which players want dissolved. After all the IMF is defunct, its main activity seen over the charred Greek and Ukraine fields. Furthermore, the Belgium Bulge might mean that London sourcing has ended, almost zero gold. The Jackass has been warning for months that true mayhem will come when the Chinese are frustrated in sourcing further London gold. The evidence might be the switch from hidden London sourcing to open market indications such as the bulge.

History might be repeating itself with a financial warfront Battle of the Belgium Bulge, a pincer movement to capture Western gold and form the Anti-USD Central Bank. Further parallel is the battle is against Fascism ironically. We might be seeing the birth of the BRICS Gold Central Bank, in a grand titanic struggle to source its gold for vault storage, decentralized as expected. The ugly twist is the the US-UK team are the fascist axis. The party behind the Belgium Bulge might be facing margin calls as the Gold price slides. Instead of booking losses and suffering liquidation of their leveraged position, they increase their margin collateral in the form of USTreasury Bonds. The party is heavily long some paper Gold contract or even possibly in combination with the GLD fund shares. A normal investor or a hedge fund would certainly not have the firepower in terms of ability to sit on a 10 to 20% loss and to maintain a position many $billions underwater.Therefore, the Belgium Bulge means a big Sovereign Type Entity is in the Game, who refuses to take losses but instead continues to post collateral with a goal toward taking Gold Delivery. Look for more margin collateral to be posted in the next monthly reporting disclosure, and the controversial story to ramp up. The risk to the London & New York & EU bank cabal, is that this large player entity demands physical gold, works toward delivery, and pays at the original $1300-1500 price on the contract, where the posted USTBond collateral is kept by the gold exchange.

The Gold Trade Standard might be born amidst a legal challenge to deliver the gold on the biggest delivery the world has ever seen, with contracts on display, with Interpol officers at the table, with collateral verified, with a caravan a mile long of armored trucks awaiting, even with Triad lieutenants in attendance for enforcement. The remainder of the contract sale will be settled in USTreasurys, along with the bulk gold delivery. The sovereign players will not be shaken. They want their gold, likely to form an initial core to the BRICS Central Bank.

The entire hypothesis makes great sense, ties pieces together, and reflects the struggle of forming the alternative system which ushers in the Gold Trade Standard. The King Dollar is being deposed, and the Belgium Bulge could indicate the dismissal and derailing of the global reserve currency. The Belgium Bulge Billboard is posted USTreasury Bonds as collateral to meet a gigantic margin call. The players are not identified, but probably a combination team of Russia, China, India,Saudi Arabia, possibly even Iran and Japan. They might be working to preserve a gigantic gold position to set up the BRICS Central Bank for Gold reserves. The gold position is clearly a group of sovereigns (meaning nations and their finance ministers or wealth fund mgmt team). They might not choose to conceal their activity much longer. JPMorgan could conceal the activity easily within the bowels of the Exch Stabilization Fund. The BRICS nations might wish to use the glaring billboard neon lights in the TIC Report as publicity, with every intention of making the battle known to analysts and experts in the banking industry, the entire banking industry watching like in stadium seats. The Jackass is not an insider, but the Hat Trick Letter team includes a few with deep insight, some insider information, and profound savvy.

The Belgium Bulge might be evidence that the major London Gold Drain might be almost finished, replaced by Paper Gold sourcing done more in the open. Therefore conclude the Belgium Bulge Billboard is a Call To Arms for the Eastern nations to fortify a gold core. Credit goes to EuroRaj, the brilliant intrepid London bank analyst who consistently thinks outside the box, and identifies the key elements in the Paradigm Shift with insights of troop movements and supply chain caravans during the global financial war. He pieced this theory together to formulate the highly credible hypothesis. My role was to digest it, elaborate upon it, and put it to print in the promulgation process. It lacks some details, as one would expect, but still indicates a mammoth shift. The roots of EuroRaj come from India, Turkey, Iran. His work experience includes London. He wrote a few weeks ago that more is to this story besides simply Russia dumping USTreasurys.

NAPKIN SCRIBBLES INDICATE HUGE VOLUME

Try some napkin scribbles. To get the math straight with proper perspective, $1 billion funds roughly 25 tons of gold. So $400bn funds 1000 tons of gold, a critical mass for the BRICS central bank. The Belgium Bulge could indicate a precious pregnancy and birth soon of a 1000-ton golden baby! It is more complicated, and potentially much larger a story. If leverage is being used, typically seen as 25:1 or 30:1, then the portion of the bulge devoted to the BRICS Gold sourcing project could be at least 8500 tons of Gold bullion, equal to what Fort Knox had before the Clinton-Rubin gangsters stole it in full view, under cover of the Gold Carry Trade with near 0% lease rates, right under our noses.

More EuroRaj rationale came with some conjecture in his line of deeper thinking. The USFed and JPMorgan agent are too skilled at concealment. Therefore possibly conclude that the entity does not object to the billboard in Brussels, and actually prefers its visibility from afar. We might be seeing a time bomb where some party is controlling against JPMorgan, in the wake of Chinese conglomerate purchasing its South Manhattan headquarter complex and vault. Consider a small twist to this scheme too. The sovereigns (Russia, China, India, Saudi, Japan) might have approached the Intl Monetary Fund or Bank For Intl Settlements in confrontation to demand a conversion of SDR pledged capital into physical Gold. If so, then the IMF/BIS then in turn would have gone to JPMorgan and demanded from them physical Gold to be delivered against the Special Drawing Rights on pledged account. It is a basket of USDollar, Euro, JapYen, British Pound, but primarily USD. The IMF might be dissolving, with evidence the Belgium Bulge itself.

Recall that the BRICS have already announced plans to set up a Development Bank by July with $100 billion in capital, with much preliminary ground work already completed. They also have kicked the IMF to the curb of irrelevance, the exclamation point being the absent USGovt funding contribution. The Jackass suspects the official BRICS Development Bank is to be a hidden gold central bank. The USTBonds held at the EuroClear are collateral meant for a physical gold trade. Notice the BRICS Devmt Bank is slowly being called the BRICS Bank in the press. Eventually perhaps the BRICS Gold Central Bank, used to convert the toxic USTBonds into Gold bullion. Come one, come all, as the toxic EuroBonds, toxic UKGilts, and toxic JapGovtBonds will all be converted to Gold. They are toxic for three simple reasons: years of near 0% money, years of unsterilized bond monetization, years of backdoor Wall Street bailouts.

THE RISE OF THE GERMAN HUB

The Jackass sees the Belgium Bulge as a repeat of history, and an unfolding of events toward the development and construction of the Eurasian Trade Zone. A key element of the trade zone will be the integration of Frankfurt Germany as a RMB trading hub. Refer to the Chinese Yuan currency, aka Renminbi. Dozens of significant deals of size are in the works, in progress. The nation of Germany has 3000 firms doing business in Russia. The nation of Germany stands alongsideJapan as the biggest foreign commercial partners in China. AnticipateFrankfurt to take on the financial hub role as partners to Russia &China, not London. A second clearing house exists, whose presence indicates much bigger German role in Eurasian Trade Zone matters. In addition to EuroClear there is the German ClearStream. The German investment bankers are not only spearheading the internationalization of the RMB but also moving fast on it. The nation of Germany will be a major conduit for technology transfer. These are two large clearing houses (EuroClear & ClearStream) that can also be custodial chambers. Many more developments are in progress toward the Eurasian Trade Zone, the role of Germany teaming with Turkey in a key role that will take the flatfooted West totally off guard.

Watch Frankfurt and Turkey team up to work on intermediary Gold provision for trade settlement and for BRICS central bank provision. Both Germany and Turkey are important swing states. They could work together in the intermediary gold function and fortify the entire Eurasian Trade Zone. Already Hong Kong is the true London of Asia. What incredible impact it would have if Germany and Turkeysolidify the Gold Ramparts to the Gold Trade Standard. As footnote, the Ramstein NATO base in Germany, and the Ircirlik NATO base in Turkey, could work on the gold transfer logistics. Moving away from heroin for USMilitary distribution across all the NATO bases, and moving toward Gold bullion in Eurasian Trade Zone distribution would be a very positive progression.

The Chinese Yuan trade is setting up its mutually cooperative designated banks much like on the bare wild frontier. The Yuan Swap Facilities are much like frontier trading posts. It looks like Frankfurt is being set up to give some serious competition to London, as it could become the principal Western financial hub for Eurasia. The Voice directly confirmed this development plan for the German financial center city, the final twist cited by EuroRaj with a stack of projects queued up. These many points, factors, and angles are analyzed in more depth in the Hat Trick Letter reports.

The BRICS nations in the Jackass view are acting in coordinated fashion. These players are explicitly telegraphing a message to those who knew how to read it. The Eastern group of sovereign nations is making a global billboard statement, a Call to Arms in the Global Monetary War, in the Global Gold War. They wish to formulate the critical mass required to launch a New Gold Trade Standard. They must assemble the gold reserves, a very complex task when such great volume approaching 10,000 tons is desired (as a mere start). They are busily sourcing the vast BRICS Gold Central Bank, which will fortify the Gold Trade Notes used as letters of credit. It is all coming together, and even the gold community struggles to read the signals. It is important never to take the stories at face value. If the dots connect, even in astounding ways, it pays to follow the pattern, to step back, and see the picture clearly. The BRICS nations and their Associates are boldly sourcing thousands of tons of Gold!!

Happiness is Freedom

I earn and live on £9,200 per year, I live in a 300 sq foot house, I "work" (because there is no distinction to my mind between work and the rest of my life, it is just my existence) 70 to 80 hours per week, 7 days a week, I have no holidays, no sickness, no assistance from the government, but I want for nothing.

But my nickname is 'smiler', because I am truly content. I do what I want, when I want and I dare any petty bureaucrat to get in my way. I do what makes me happy, I try to make those around me happy because in doing so I am happy.

I abhor alcohol and drugs because they simply get in the way of me feeling content.

The Enlightened Soul
Gandhi
If I contrast the way I feel with the way I used to feel when I was 'employed' in enforced subservience for both my employer and the government, then I understand why people drink and take drugs and do anything to escape from the harsh reality of their day to day existence.

I also have to thank my ex-wife for revealing the truth  that freedom is happiness to me. It only took thirteen years of subservience to her to learn this. Subservience is the easy option, it requires thought and effort to determine what it is that you want and to demand it from those around you.

I also have to thank my future wife for showing me it takes effort to take responsibility for yourself, too much effort for many people. I am criticised and castigated and hated and feared because I am the change I want to see in the world. I will not comply, I will not conform, I will not stay silent and I will not compromise.

The Enlightened Soul
Ron Paul
Because I take responsibility for myself, I take responsibility for my happiness. Because I am free I can achieve contentment because there is nothing stopping me.

There is nothing new in heaven or earth, but there is a tendency for people to take the easy option, to be taken in by false promises of those who seek to line their own pockets by exploiting the trust that others place in them.

But enlightened souls have lived and fought to protect us from the tyranny of oppression, their words live on and their deeds inspire us to struggle for our fundamental rights to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Cliches of Progressivism 3: Government must manage scarce resources

Milton Friedman once said, “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in five years there'd be a shortage of sand.” The great economist wasn’t just being cute. He was pointing to a very serious problem with government management of resources. And in this chapter, we’ll talk about why it’s a problem. But first we should ask: Why are people so concerned that we will run out of resources? And how can we find a reasonable balance between using resources and conserving them?

When most people think about resources, they think about the possibility they might be used up. And running out of resources means there will be nothing left for future generations. This scares people. So the notion goes something like: If parents let kids get into the groceries on the first night of the camping trip, there won’t be any sandwiches left for the picnic. The parents wisely ration the resources and restrict the kids’ access so that there is something left for later. People who think government should manage resources are thinking that government will behave like wise parents. But does it?

What you may not have realized is that people in the market—under certain conditions—find a balance between consumption and conservation, which one might call “sustainable.” But first there has to be a complete market mechanism. This may be hard for some people to get their heads around, because most people think markets cause overconsumption. And certain kinds of markets can.

Healthy markets only exist under certain rules. The main rules are what we might call the three Ps: private property, price signals, and profit. These are the basic conditions of exchange. Without them there can be no healthy market.

Private property means that an individual has full ownership of a resource. We know who the owner is and how much they own, and that right cannot be taken away arbitrarily. The owner may also have the authority to divest himself of the resource. That means we know the difference between mine and thine and in so knowing, we have one of the conditions under which to conserve, trade, or consume.

Prices are what economist Steven Horwitz calls “information wrapped in an incentive.” When the price of some resource goes high enough, owners have the incentive to do any number of things. They might use less of the resource (i.e., conserve it), they might find new creative ways to increase the supply of the resource, or they might find a substitute, which ends up conserving the resource. Of course, we make any such choice because we expect of future returns, otherwise known as profit. And in this equilibrium created by prices, property, and profit, markets balance use with conservation.

Consider a resource that was once highly sought after: whale blubber. Whale blubber was used as an energy resource in the nineteenth century. But in the case of whales, there were only two of the three Ps. Whalers had prices and profit, but no private property. The whales belonged to what is known as the commons—which meant anyone could hunt them. Unsurprisingly, they were nearly hunted to extinction. Because no one owned them, whalers had a perverse incentive to hunt them quickly. The whales rapidly became scarce. Indeed, as the number of whales went down, the price of each individual whale went up and the incentives to hunt increased. But this can’t happen if there is a robust private property regime in place. If people could own whales, their incentive would not be to destroy them unsustainably, but to raise them. (Ironically, fossil fuels saved the whales thanks to substitution.)

In the nineteenth century American West, wild bison (buffalo) roamed the unfenced, commonly held plains by the millions. They were hunted nearly to extinction. By contrast, people could own and raise cattle, and the use of barbed wire on private property made it feasible to do so. Today, there are far more cattle in the plains than bison and even where bison are privately owned, their long-term survival is now better assured than it ever was on “public” property.

Consider trees. In North America, there are more trees than there have been in over a hundred years. Not only do foresters have incentives to regrow trees they harvest, they have incentives to cut them at a sustainable rate. Of course, in certain parts of the world—like Amazonia and Africa—concerns about forest clearing are justified. The big difference between forests in North America and South America? In one case, forests are largely government managed and in the other they are largely privately managed.

Since 1900, U.S. forestland acreage has remained stable for more than a century. Unlike some regions in the world where deforestation is happening at a rapid pace, the United States has actually maintained its forestland for the past 100 years. When one includes the heavily forested Northern Forest of Canada, forestland in North America since 1900 has grown—by a lot, according to the UN State of the World’s Forests reports.

While forests in many parts of the world are losing ground, losses in these areas are slowing. Still, that leaves the question: Why are North America’s forests growing while forests in other areas being lost? Certainly the biggest factor is whether the country has the three Ps. The absence of property rights is known as the tragedy of the commons. If we look at the facts around the world, places that have stable private property rights have stable forestland. Places that don’t have tragedies of the commons—with the attendant rush to exploit.

Political leaders in areas without private property rights have tried to solve the problem of overexploitation of forestland through the application of government management: that is, simply forbid people from using the resource or have the government allocate it “sustainably.” Contrary to Progressive conservation clichés, neither policy works particularly well.

In the case of bans, black markets form and there is a race to exploit the resource. Poachers and illegal exploiters emerge as the problems persist. For example, black rhinos are under threat in Africa despite bans. Because the profit motive is even stronger under bans, risk takers come out of the woodwork. In the case of government allocation of resources, the process can easily be corrupted. In other words, anyone who is able to capture the regulators will be able to manipulate the process in his favor. What follows is not only corruption, but in most cases considerations of “sustainability” go by the wayside, along with all the market mechanisms that constitute the true tests of sustainability.

Any marriage contract between homosexuals is unsustainable in Law

"Love is an artificial sentiment, created by society and nurtured with great skill and care in order to make dominant the sex which ought to obey" Jean Jacques Rousseau, The Social Contract (1762)

Marriage is one of the seven sacraments of the Catholic church, (I do not propose to enter into the discussion as to whether the Church of England is Catholic or Protestant which would be a distraction).

Marriage is also a lawful contract, perhaps the most important contract there is. The contract is one of procreation and confers inheritance rights on the offspring of the marriage.

Marriage is a product of its times and the often harsh reality of life in bygone times. Marriage arose before the welfare state as a community led way of ensuring the security of women and children in the world. In the days before contraception and abortion, when infant mortality and death during child birth were relatively common, the lot of a woman was not to be the dominant gender that they are today.

Women were the property of their father until they were 'given away' to their husband often with a large sum of money, a dowry to be used to support the daughter after marriage. After marriage they became the property of their husband. It was only once widowed that women were allowed to own property in their own name. At this time when the majority of people were subsistence farmers, the wealthiest people other than the nobility were tailors. Unmarried women are still called 'spinsters' because they would earn their livelihood by spinning wool for the tailor to turn into clothing.

Marriage was rarely a match of love, but rather something organised between families to ensure future success and co-operation between the two families. The relatives of the two people marrying 'in law' became family. The motive was more often political, dynastic or economic rather than one of personal choice. Arranged marriages were as common in Europe as they are in India today.

That a woman should not have sex before marriage and only with her husband was simply a very sensible rule, the consequences of becoming pregnant outside of marriage were dire for women, with abortion on demand and contraception this is no longer so necessary. As there were no paternity tests and as only legitimate offspring had inheritance rights, it would be too easy for a woman to claim any man was the father otherwise.

So what changes have occurred to render a contract of marriage unnecessary?

1) Paternity Tests - now it is possible to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the ancedents of any individual. This law was changed following the submission to the Legislation Committee by Progress Jersey back in 2006 at the same time the rules on naming children were changed.

2) Contraception and Abortion - personally I am anti-abortion and don't really see the point of contraception for myself. Whilst as a Libertarian I don't feel the State has a right to intervene on the contraception issue, on the abortion issue I feel the State has a duty to protect the rights of the unborn child. The law as it stands - abortion only on medical grounds - has been abused by the Civil Servants as most laws are and its purpose has been corrupted to being effectively abortion on demand. (You would be advised to take note of how the intentions of a law are quickly corrupted by the bureaucracy to serve the bureaucracy and not the will of the people).

That aside, the need for marriage to protect the security of a woman has been removed.

3) Inheritance rights - except in Jersey, people are more or less free to leave their estate to whomever they like (as long as they leave a significant proportion to the State of course!). These rights are included within a 'Civil Partnership' which is open to both heterosexuals and homosexuals.

When considering whether the disallowing of 'gay marriage' is contrary to Human Rights, once must consider if the individuals are suffering any discrimination.

As homosexuals are not able to procreate, lacking the biological components necessary to undertake such a venture, to enter into a contract in which the parties are unable to complete the terms of the contract is patently absurd and thus any such contract is unsustainable in Law.

We must also look to the rights of individuals to freedom of religious belief and to consider whether it is possible to differentiate between a heterosexual and homosexual partnership. Clearly it is, one is not better or worse than the other, but they are different and thus it is appropriate to use different terms to describe them. We assign different names to help define minute differences in the various species of bird in order that we can communicate our meaning to each other precisely. The fact that something is different does not hold any implication of comparative value.

Marriage as a lawful contract has been rendered unnecessary by social 'advances', if it is unnecessary then why does it continue to exist?

Marriage as a religious right remains important to a great number of people, it is their human right to freedom of religious belief which is being threatened here.

So what is the alternative. If we are to protect the freedom of religion of the larger proportion of society then perhaps the preferable course is to remove the term marriage from law altogether. All marriages should be referred to as civil partnerships in law. Should people wish to be married in a religion then it should be free for each religion to specify the terms upon which it will conduct the ceremony.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Cliches of Progressivism 2: Government Intervention minimises income inequality

Income Inequality Arises From Market Forces and Requires Government Intervention

Inequality is everywhere. In a rainforest, mahogany trees take up more water and sunlight than all the other plants and animals. In our economic ecosystems, entrepreneurs and investors control more of the assets than the rest of us do. No one worries about the mahogany trees, and yet there is terrible fretting about the wealthy. In the case of ecosystems and economies, however, there are very good reasons for an unequal distribution of resources.

The sources of some forms of inequality are better than others. For example, inequality produced by crony capitalism—or what Barron’s editor Gene Epstein refers to as “crapitalism”—is surely undesirable. Therefore, it’s important for us to make a distinction between economic entrepreneurs and political entrepreneurs: The former create value for society; the latter have figured out how to transfer resources from others into their own coffers, usually by lobbying for subsidies, special favours or anti-competitive laws.

If we can ever disentangle the crapitalists from the true entrepreneurs, we can see the difference between makers and takers. And inequality that follows from honest entrepreneurship, far from indicating that something is wrong, indicates an overall flourishing. In a system where everyone is made better off through creative activity and exchange, some people are going to get wealthy. It’s a natural feature of the system—a system that rewards entrepreneurs and investors for being good stewards of capital. Of course, when people are not good stewards of capital, they fail. In other words, people who make bad investments or who don’t serve customers well aren’t going to stay rich long.

Whenever we hear someone lamenting inequality, we should immediately ask, “So what?” Some of the smartest (and even some of the richest) people in America confuse concerns about the poor with concerns about the assets the wealthy control. It’s rooted in that old zero-sum thinking—the idea that if a poor guy doesn’t have it, it’s because the wealthy guy does. But one person is only better off at the expense of another under crapitalism, not under conditions of honest entrepreneurship and free exchange.

Unless someone has made lots of money hiring lawyers and lobbyists instead of researchers and developers, wealthy people got rich by creating a whole lot of value for a whole lot of people. Thus, the absence of super-wealthy people would actually be a bad sign for the rest of us—especially the poor. Indeed, it would indicate one of two things: Either very little value had been created (fewer good things in our lives, like iPhones and chocolate truffles) or the government had engaged in radical redistribution, removing significant incentives for people to be value creators and stewards of capital at all.

When resources are sitting in investments or in bank accounts, they are not idle. In other words, most rich people don’t stuff their millions under mattresses or take baths in gold coins. In conditions of economic stability, these resources are constantly working in the economy. In more stable conditions, a portion finds its way to a creative restaurateur in South Carolina in the form of a loan. Another portion is being used by arbitrageurs who help stabilize commodity prices. Another portion is being loaned to a nurse so she can buy her first home. Under normal circumstances, these are all good things. But when too many resources get intercepted by Uncle Sam before they get to the nodes in these economic networks, they will be squandered in the federal bureaucracy—a vortex where prosperity goes to die.

We should also remember that, due to our equal markets, most of us live like kings. Differences in assets are not the same as differences in living standards, although people tend to fetishize the former. Economist Don Boudreaux reminds us that Bill Gates's wealth may be about 70,000 times greater than his own. But does Bill Gates ingest 70,000 times more calories than Professor Boudreaux? Are Bill Gates’ meals 70,000 times tastier? Are his children educated 70,000 times better? Can he travel to Europe or to Asia 70,000 times faster or more safely? Will Gates live 70,000 times longer? Today, even the poorest segment in Western Europe live better than almost anyone in the eighteenth century and better than two-thirds of the world's population.

When we hear people fretting about inequality, we should ask ourselves: Are they genuinely concerned for the poor or are they indignant about the rich? Here’s how to tell the difference: Whenever someone grumbles about “the gap,” ask her if she’d be willing for the rich to be even richer if it meant improved conditions for the absolute poorest among us. If she says “no,” she’s admitting that her concern is really with what the wealthy have, not what the poor lack. If her answer is “yes,” then the so-called “gap” is irrelevant. You can then go on to talk about legitimate concerns, like how best to improve the conditions of the poor without paying them to be wards of the State. In other words, the meaningful conversation we should be having is about absolute poverty, not relative poverty.

In so many of the discussions about income inequality, there is a basic emotional dynamic at work. Someone sees they have less than another, and they feel envious. Perhaps they see they have more than another, and they feel guilty. Or they see that someone has more than someone else, and they feel indignation. Envy, guilt, and indignation. Are these the kinds of emotions that should drive social policy? When we begin to understand the origins of wealth—honest entrepreneurs and stewards of capital in an inherently unequal ecosystem—we can learn to leave our more primitive emotions behind.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Cliches of Progressivism 1: Equality Serves the Common Good


“Clichés of Progressivism,” a series of insightful commentaries covering topics of free enterprise, income inequality, and limited government.

“Free people are not equal, and equal people are not free.”

I wish I could remember who first said that. It ought to rank as one of the great truths of all time, and one that is fraught with profound meaning.

Equality before the law—for instance, being judged innocent or guilty based on whether you committed the crime, not on what colour, sex, or creed you represent—is a noble ideal and not at issue here. The “equalness” to which the statement above refers pertains to economic income or material wealth.
Put another way, then, the statement might read, “Free people will earn different incomes. Where people have the same income, they cannot be free.”

Economic equality in a free society is a mirage that redistributionists envision—and too often are willing to shed both blood and treasure to accomplish. But free people are different people, so it should not come as a surprise that they earn different incomes. Our talents and abilities are not identical. We don’t all work as hard. And even if we all were magically made equal in wealth tonight, we’d be unequal in the morning because some of us would spend it and some of us would save it.

To produce even a rough measure of economic equality, governments must issue the following orders and back them up with firing squads and prisons: “Don’t excel or work harder than the next guy, don’t come up with any new ideas, don’t take any risks, and don’t do anything differently from what you did yesterday.” In other words, don’t be human.

The fact that free people are not equal in economic terms is not to be lamented. It is, rather, a cause for rejoicing. Economic inequality, when it derives from the voluntary interaction of creative individuals and not from political power, testifies to the fact that people are being themselves, each putting his uniqueness to work in ways that are fulfilling to himself and of value to others. As the French would say in a different context, Vive la difference!

People obsessed with economic equality—egalitarianism, to employ the more clinical term—do strange things. They become envious of others. They covet. They divide society into two piles: villains and victims. They spend far more time dragging someone else down than they do pulling themselves up. They’re not fun to be around. And if they make it to a legislature, they can do real harm. Then they not only call the cops, they are the cops.

Examples of injurious laws motivated by egalitarian sentiments are, of course, legion. They form the blueprint of the modern welfare state’s redistributive apparatus. A particularly classic case was the 1990 hike in excise taxes on boats, aircraft, and jewellery. The sponsors of the bill in Congress presumed that only rich people buy boats, aircraft, and jewellery. Taxing those objects would teach the rich a lesson, help narrow the gap between the “haves” and “have-nots,” and raise a projected $31 million in new revenues for the federal Treasury in 1991.

What really occurred was much different. A subsequent study by economists for the Joint Economic Committee of Congress showed that the rich did not line up by the flock to be sheared: Total revenue from the new taxes in 1991 was only $16.6 million. Especially hard-hit was the boating industry, where a total of 7,600 jobs were wiped out. In the aircraft industry, 1,470 people were pink-slipped. And in jewellery manufacturing, 330 joined the jobless ranks just so congressmen could salve their egalitarian consciences.
Those lost jobs, the study revealed, prompted a $24.2 million outlay for unemployment benefits. That’s right—$16.6 million came in, $24.2 million went out, for a net loss to the deficit-ridden Treasury of $7.6 million. To advance the cause of economic equality by a punitive measure, Congress succeeded in nothing more than making almost all of us a little bit poorer.

To the rabid egalitarian, however, intentions count for everything and consequences mean little. It’s more important to pontificate and assail than it is to produce results that are constructive or that even live up to the stated objective. Getting Congress to undo the damage it does with bad ideas like this is always a daunting challenge.

In July 1995 economic inequality made headlines with the publication of a study by New York University economist Edward Wolff. The latest in a long line of screeds that purport to show that free markets are making the rich richer and the poor poorer, Wolff’s work was celebrated in the mainstream media. “The most telling finding,” the author wrote, “is that the share of marketable net worth held by the top 1 percent, which had fallen by 10 percentage points between 1945 and 1976, rose to 39 percent in 1989, compared with 34 percent in 1983.” Those at the bottom end of the income scale, meanwhile, saw their wealth erode over the period—if the Wolff study is to be believed.

On close and dispassionate inspection, however, it turns out that the study didn’t tell the whole story, if indeed it told any of it. Not only did Wolff employ a very narrow measure that inherently exaggerates wealth disparity, he also ignored the mobility of individuals up and down the income scale. An editorial in the August 28, 1995, Investor’s Business Daily laid it out straight: “Different people make up ‘the wealthy’ from year to year. The latest data from income-tax returns . . . show that most of 1979’s top-earning 20 percent had fallen to a lower income bracket by 1988.”

Of those who made up the bottom 20 percent in 1979, just 14.2 percent were still there in 1988. Some 20.7 percent had moved up one bracket, while 35 percent had moved up two, 25.3 percent had moved up three, and 14.7 percent had joined the top-earning 20 percent.

If economic inequality is an ailment, punishing effort and success is no cure in any event. Coercive measures that aim to redistribute wealth prompt the smart or politically well-connected “haves” to seek refuge in havens here or abroad, while the hapless “have-nots” bear the full brunt of economic decline. A more productive expenditure of time would be to work to erase the mass of intrusive government that ensures that the “have-nots” are also the “cannots.”

This economic equality thing is not compassion. When it’s just an idea, it’s bunk. When it’s public policy, it’s illogic writ large.

Friday, 2 May 2014

Golden Jackass: Pathogenesis & Change Factors

Systemic failure and its pathogenesis have been over 50 years in progress, with countless events. The origin is found with the cabal murder Kennedy, but the climax finale will be found with the Saudi Petro-Dollar rejection and the arrival of Eastern gold-backed currencies. The pathogenesis is fierce, vicious, multi-faceted, coordinated, enforced, unstoppable, destructive, vile, with many unfortunate aspects and facades. The extreme vulnerability of the financial crime syndicate can finally be seen, the symptoms obvious. 
If somebody had asked Greenspan in 1995 whether the day would ever come when the US Federal Reserve would install Zero Interest Policy and keep the 0% rate in place indefinitely, then install Quantitative Easing and keep the bond monetization in place permanently, approximately 0% of the experts would say the day would arrive. But here it is. In early 2009, the Jackass forecasted that the arrival of official rate cuts would result in ZIRP Forever. In mid-2011, the Jackass forecasted that the arrival of official unsterilized bond monetizations would result in QE programs in a long series. In 2013, the Jackass forecasted that QE would continue and Taper Talk would be abandoned, resulting in QE to Infinity. It is the New Normal, and Sir Alan Greenspan is aghast, unable to defend the current monetary policy.
PATHOGENESIS OF SYSTEMIC FAILURE
The pathogenesis continues unabated, and will reach its inexorable conclusion. When the systemic breakdown is too painful, when it causes too many systems to stop functioning, when it must be enforced by imposing sanctions on the majority of the world stage, when the toxicity of the USDollar and USTreasury Bond is intolerable, when the entire global system demands it, when the pain is too great, the Gold Trade Standard will return. The only player not to participate will be the Untied States. They might present a supposed gold-backed New Republic Dollar, aka Scheiss Dollar, but it will be supported by the familiar Deep Storage Gold. It is nothing but unmined ore bodies, some tied to the Barrick infamous Evergreen gold contracts. The new split Dollar will be revealed quickly as a sham. The Untied States is at greater risk of rapid decline and systemic breakdown than at any time since the republic was formed in 1776.The quintessential points in time to guarantee the national failure are the creation of the US Federal Reserve in 1913, the abrogation of the Bretton Woods Gold Standard in 1971, and the granting of Most Favored Nation status to China in 1999. These three events, all with fingerprints extended from banker cabal hands, have assured the destruction of the US nation.
The nation will be rebuilt, but by a different cast. It will enjoy a new industrial phase, but by different masters. It will benefit from new economic growth, but with lesser income and minimal benefits. It will see debt removed, but with tremendous loss of wealth. It will see movement toward fiscal balance, but with confiscation of pensions. The nation will see a new currency, but it will undergo heavy formal devaluation. It will rebound, but not thrive, under the cloud of fascism. The hope lies with Gold & Silver, which will be likely outlawed in the land. The People are in a position to object in defiance, and to save in the form of true money: precious metals. Poverty and debt slavery will rule. The People must put aside the propaganda on what constitutes money. The People must learn economics, finance, and especially capitalism again. The States must snatch back control from a crime syndicate lodged in the federal offices.
The USDollar pathogenesis and USEconomic collapse have included a truly nasty diabolic unfortunate unfolding of events and direction of developments. It has had a few pushes, and several still hidden elements. Nothing is exact, but the following sequence makes too much sense in hindsight. Consider the following key events in recent history:
  • Kill Kennedy, install Nixon, abrogate Gold Standard, put Kissinger in charge, build Petro-Dollar Standard with the Middle East core of producing nations.
  • Environmental movement combined with labor union power to discourage US corporations, who go offshore.
  • Exploitation of cheaper Asian labor, Mexican labor, Latin labor made cost sense, but depleted US of legitimate income.
  • Clean financial industry in US eventually led to extreme bond fraud, national savings diverted, bonds as chief export instead of tangible output.
  • Rubin & Clinton stole Fort Knox gold with aid of Papa Bush and Wall Street banks, the narco routes used in distribution.
  • Greenspan fed the beast, giving the US public and Wall Street banks what they wanted in cheap plentiful money.
  • Bank Derivatives become a key glue to the wrecked banking structures which went insolvent in the early 1990 decade.
  • Wall Street cut a deal with China to lease gold, give Most Favored Nation status, which paved the way for tremendous Foreign Direct Investment to China, but tragic loss of legitimate income and deep dependence for final time on the twin housing & mortgage bubbles.
  • USEconomy had dependence on asset bubbles explode with the tech telecom stock bust in 2000 followed by the subprime mortgage bust in 2007, the climax that marked systemic breakdown.
  • USGovt debt went out of control in volume at $1 trillion annually, with foreigners holding majority of debt.
  • CIA narcotics business created a Shadow Govt with a $800 billion hidden budget, underground cities, bio-weapon research, tactical HAARP usage, gold caches, and more.
  • US War Machine became an integral part of US foreign policy and USDollar defense.
  • USGovt Security Agencies took control after 911, came out in explicit overt fascist style after 40 years of hidden nazi leadership.
  • Weimar USFed monetary policy became fixed and permanent without potential alteration under the installed ZIRP Forever and QE to Infinity.
  • The entire system breaks, systemic failure, economic disintegration, profit margin vanishing act, debt default, derivative cracks, oppressive health insurance costs, all in progress.
  • Narcos on the verge of buying all major governments and police agencies in the world, to install global totalitarianism.
  • Gold markets corrupt the price despite almost totally absent inventory while global police corner the banker cabal rats.
  • War breaks out in as many spots as possible, this time led by the Langley black op corps without full support of the Pentagon.
  • Internal rivalries are exposed within the United States Govt while external factions are revealed for deep cracks during high level US betrayals.
  • Global Currency Reset has begun and the death of the Petro-Dollar is in progress, as the Eastern Hemisphere gathers critical mass in replacement of the USD-based trade payment
  • system even as new gold-backed currencies are born to usher in the New Gold Trade Standard finally.
As footnote, apologies for forgetting, omitting, or being ignorant of another 80 devious diabolical deadly deeds where numerous operations were launched, many people perished, and scattered nations were ransacked in support of the unsound fiat currency regime supported by surreptitious violence and outright military force.
CHANGE AGENTS FOR CLIMAX
Change agents before end of year 2014 can be identified. Some significant events are extremely likely to occur soon, which will change the American and Western landscape permanently. The confidence in the system will vanish quickly. The gold investors will be given a bolstered hope and much encouragement. The changes will hit like a storm, slow at first, the process already having begun. The storm will accelerate, the time between highly disruptive events to quicken.
The USDollar has no value, since it has no asset backing. It is reinforced by faith (vanished) and military force (clear with Libya, Syria, Ukraine). Many gold & silver investors are disheartened by the low and still declining official COMEX price. The Jackass position is to ignore it, since corrupted. Besides, they have almost no precious metals in inventory. To pay attention to a vacated mart is lunatic and without logic. That an empty vault would dictate price is one of the biggest absurdities of our era, hardly ever debated in open forums. That bright alert aware folks would care about their declared enforced price, done from illegal mechanisms in a blatant way, is the basis of irrational action that has led to great frustration. However, reality has it that fine people wish to see progress on their redeemable wealth. They wonder when the day might come for cashing in. Others depend unfortunately on selling some small amounts of their gold and silver hoard (stash) in order to run their business, to continue their lifestyle, or to attend school.
The following are some likely actual change agent factors, agents, and events, which could happen before year 2014 ends. The Jackass has stated that 2014 will not end as it began, as huge changes and disruptions come. Also, my perspective on the rapidly reducing time between events is very evident, indicating a Great Quickening much like an earthquake building from minor tremors. If a few of the following probable events occur, the entire financial system will be altered. Momentum will gather during the movement of time. The system is not static, but rather dynamic, and in fast decay. The internal rot is profound. The public will come to learn and be convinced the system is broken. The faith in money will quickly vanish. Consider the following potential change agents:
  • Russian primitive payment system arrives, with an asset backed Ruble currency
  • Saudis accept non-USD for oil payments, actually any major currency
  • Yuan full convertibility hits the scene, to occur in Shanghai Free Trade Zone
  • Indications of a new Dollar in the United States, with fraudulent backing
  • Significant shutdown of global mining industry, from lack of profitability
  • One major giant Western bank goes into failure, with three prime candidates
  • Major US retail (product, food) chains show empty shelves from interruptions
  • USFed revealed to huge QE volume through proxies, the hidden side revealed
  • COMEX & LBMA show no gold price, from lack of inventory
  • High ranking US or London banker is murdered, with no possible cover-up
The Voice added his own ominous High Risk factors for altering the public landscape, far beyond the financial system, but instead more completely like to social systems and political systems. He lists extreme geopolitical risk factors. In contrast, the Jackass change factors are likely to occur with 50-50 likelihood, meaning several could happen. The Voice list includes less likely events, but extreme events, deadly events. None should be dismissed, as pressures grow. EuroRaj added some perspective, more within the RESET context, for severe change agents. The London banker produced highly probable events, actual markers within the RESET context. It is a process rather than a single event at a point in time, a process that has begun. The conclusion of Paradigm Shift taking root is the message, as the RESET is basically the global adjustment away from the USDollar and US-centric financial, commercial, and leadership position. Their two addendum full lists are presented in the April Hat Trick Letter as formatted in the Gold & Currency Report to be posted this weekend.
GOLD STANDARD PROTECTION, SOLUTION, FUTURE
The protection is with Gold & Silver bars & coins. The solution is not to be found at the doorstep of central banks, since they are the perpetrators of the systemic ruin. They escape prosecution since they appoint the prosecutors. The solution is a return to the Gold Standard, the introduction of new gold-backed currencies, the installation of new banking systems instead of SWIFT, and the construction of free trade zones. They will all be put in place, led by the Eastern superpowers. They will arrive with a vast new structure of legitimacy. They will include barter systems and decentralized mechanisms. They will include new Letters of Credit based in Gold Trade Notes. But the East led by the BRICS nations and their armada of associate nations will be the promoters, installers, and participants of the new strong viable Gold Standard system that the Untied States dreads and fears. The West led by Wall Street and London will continue its rapacious confiscation of wealth and its vicious devotion to war until the platform they stand on collapses, built upon USD, USTBond, and SWIFT copyrights. The return of the Gold Standard is coming like a great storm. The West will claim its architects are terrorists, the advocates of sound money to be renegades. The West and its Fascist Business Model is reaching a climax phase of descent into a sinkhole. The damage will be extensive. The survivors will be owners of Gold & Silver. The rest will become debt slaves in a nasty fascist state.

Versailled

Getting "Versailled", as in the French royal palace Versailles — the epitome of excess of the French aristocracy in the Courts of Louis XV and XVI during the 18th century. The excesses of the French monarchy caused enough economic pressure on the working classes to instigate what was finally the rise of the violent revolt that would usurp the French aristocracy and sweep it beneath the swelling tide of the ideals of reason and individualism of the Age of Enlightenment.

“Privatizing profits and socializing losses” refers to any instance of speculators benefiting (privately) from profits, but not taking losses, by pushing the losses onto society at large, particularly via the government.

How utterly aristocratic are our modern-day courtiers who preside over the board rooms as masters of the universe, also known as Wall Street executives. Their dealings are portrayed in Matt Taibbi’s Rolling Stone article The Real Housewives of Wall Street, which brings to light the theft of taxpayer dollars, pouring like a “waterfall” into the hands of two of the wives of the very rich, through a TALF (Term Asset-backed Securities Loan Facility) handout to Wall Street approved during the sunset months of the Bush Administration.

For the years 1762-1778 – the last time Pluto was in Capricorn – history records the build-up to the French Revolution caused by the oppression of the peasant and working classes. In the UK the period started with the Seven Years War establishing British dominance in India and Canada and ended with the American Revolution and the culmination of the philosophies of the Age of Enlightenment, the cultural movement of intellectuals emphasizing reason and individualism rather than tradition

Pluto entered Capricorn in November 2008 where it will stay until 2024, who knows what the world will be like then. At first, like a wrecking ball. The old must be reduced to rubble, even as new life springs up from within.

Be assured that by the end of this Pluto in Capricorn de-structuring of top-down institutional power over others, we shall have prepared the ground for Pluto’s next transit, through Aquarius, and the distribution of power equally to everyone, it is no coincidence that Libertarianism is once more the dominant political and social force in societies.

Before the New Golden Age things are going to get worse

Ravi Batra is a cyclical analyst, and bases many of his predictions on what he calls the Law of Social Cycles, which was pioneered by his late teacher P.R. Sarkar. I first encountered this theory about ten years ago when I read the above mentioned Great Depression of 1990 and it has remained with me as a useful and interesting way of looking at the world. Batra re-introduces the theory in Chapter 4 of his latest work, and it is essential to the understanding of how he believes we will arrive at the New Golden Age. 

The Four Types of People
The Law of Social Cycles states that while people in any society are all relatively similar - we all have generally the same goals, desires and ambitions - we differ in the way we go about achieving our goals. An individual's specific methods for achieving success depend on his physical and psychological make-up. Essentially, there are four different types of people who find basic fulfilment in four different kinds of ways: 
  1. Warriors - have strong bodies, vigorous physical energy and a sharp intellect. Warriors tend to develop the skills that take advantage of their inherent gifts of stamina, courage and vigour. Their mentality is one that is not averse to taking physical risks. Examples of people in our society with the warrior mentality include: Policemen, firemen, soldiers, professional athletes, skilled carpenters and tradesmen, etc. They all achieve success through their physical skills and a deep understanding of their profession. Michael Jordan is an excellent example of a member of the warrior class.

  2. Intellectuals - have a more developed intellect than the warriors, but generally lack the physical strength and vigour. Intellectuals are happiest when they try to achieve success by developing and expressing their intellectual skills and talents. Examples would be: Teachers, writers, professors, scientists, artists, musicians, philosophers, doctors and lawyers, and above all, priests.

  3. Acquisitors - have a nose for money. If money can be made the acquisitors will find a way to make it. They are not as bright as the intellectuals, nor as strong as the warriors, but they are keen when it comes to making and accumulating money and material possessions. Such people are the traders, businessmen, managers, entrepreneurs, bankers, brokers, and landlords in our society.

  4. Labourers - are altogether different from the first three groups. Labourers lack the energy and vigour of the warriors, the keen intellect of the intellectuals, and the ambition and drive of the accumulators. In spite of the fact that their contribution to society is profound - in fact, society could not function without them - the other groups generally look down upon and tend to exploit them. The labourers are the peasants, serfs, clerks, short order cooks, waiters, janitors, doormen, cabdrivers, garbage collectors, truck drivers, night watchmen and factory workers who keep society running smoothly by working diligently and without complaint.
I think we all know people who would fit into each of the above categories. While all people have a bit of each of these characteristics, usually only one of the characteristics is dominant in an individual. And while there is some social mobility between groups, it is generally fairly limited. It would be fairly difficult for a sensitive poet to become a professional soldier, for example. There are two exceptions, however: All of the classes like money, so it is easy for any of the classes to acquire the acquisitor mentality, though not necessarily the skill. Furthermore, members of the other classes can be forced into the labourer class out the need to support themselves and families. 

Social Classes and Social Cycles
Groups of each type of people make up the social classes in society. Under this theory, classes are not divided by income level, but rather by disposition. In any society, it is the warriors who defend the nation and keep the peace; intellectuals develop religion, art, law and new inventions; acquisitors manage the farms, factories, financial institutions and stores; and the labourers do the routine work - waiting tables, collecting trash, and other low-tech, low skill jobs. As should be evident, each class contributes something vitally important to society, and society could not function without all the classes working together in harmony. Unfortunately, not all classes are rewarded equally according to their contributions. Furthermore though all exist simultaneously in society, at any given time only one of the four classes is the dominant class and therefore rules society. (The labourers, however, never rule - more on this later.) 

How do you know which is the dominant class? Batra suggests asking which is the most admired profession in society. If common people look up to soldiers or other warrior professions as the heroes of society, it is an age of warriors. If the young people aspire to become priests, or enter the clergy, or become poets or musicians or scientists (yes, such periods did exist - and still do in other parts of the world) it is an age of intellectuals. When the majority aspires to become like the super rich - to make hundreds of millions of dollars with little or no work, and enjoy private jets and exclusive lifestyles - it is an age of the acquisitors, as we find ourselves in now. 

No single class can remain dominant indefinitely, and power passes from class to class in a prescribed order, or cycle. The age of warriors - which bring strict order to society and a return to fundamental values - is followed by an age of intellectuals, which over time merges into an age of acquisitors. Batra describes the progression through the age of acquisitors on page 70:
Once the majority of intellectuals become acquisitive, materialism degenerates into super-materialism. There are no more religious or ethical restraints on the avarice of the elite, and as the public follows its leaders, everything gets commercialized.

There comes a point when the intellectual acquisitors are virtually unchallenged; that is when the process of wealth concentration runs full throttle, with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer at incredible speeds. The boundless hypocrisy of acquisitive intellectuals ultimately torments the majority of people. Salaries go down, and the bulk of society is forced to devote much of its time to making money. Warriors and intellectuals then have to become labourers and are left with little time for the finer pursuits of life. They have to labour hard to support themselves and their children. The intellectual's inherent love for art, music, painting and philosophy give way to routine work all day long to provide the means for family survival. The warrior's innate predilection for adventure and sport is replaced by overtime work to make ends meet. The vast majority of society comes to adopt the labourer's way of living and thinking.

Only two classes then remain - acquisitors and labourers, or the haves and have-nots. The age of acquisitors eventually turns into the age of labourers, which may now be called the acquisitive-cum-labour age, in which the acquisitive intellectual is dominant.

For a while, people suffer through the deceit and exploitation of the reigning class. They maintain their lifestyle by increasingly getting into debt. Acquisitors now have a field day. They make money left and right. They enrich themselves through their control over businesses, farms, and factories, and through lending money to the other classes.
This is right about where we as a society find ourselves now, Batra argues. As the acquisitors have become dominant, most members of the other classes have been forced into to the labouring class in order to support both themselves and the appetites of the acquisitors (through interest payments on debt). At the same time, nearly everyone aspires to the lifestyle of the acquisitors -- those who don't are society's misfits and outcasts. Further, the acquisitors make a show of making it seem possible that such a lifestyle is available to anyone, if only you would just work harder (or smarter).

But the acquisitor age is just the flip side of the age of labourers -- the acquisitor-cum-labourer age, as Batra calls it. Labourers are in the majority, but the acquisitors are the ones holding the reigns of power. 

This age of labourers is characterized by:
  1. A breakdown of the family unit due to divorce
  2. Rampant crime (including white collar) and disrespect for the rule of law
  3. Extremely loose morals and high rates of prostitution
  4. Neglect of the children and the elderly
  5. A general aversion to mental and physical discipline
  6. A culture of "super-materialism" and a thriving drug culture (legal and illegal)
  7. The commercialization of everything, including art, religion, music, sports, adventure, etc.
  8. A religion of fear and educational decline
  9. Intellectual dishonesty and the spread of dogma
  10. Low status for women, due to the prevalence of divorce, prostitution and pornography
  11. Divided and decentralized government
  12. Acquisitive politicians dominating politics but sharing power with labourers.
Aside from the last three on the list - women still have an elevated status, the government, though divided remains centralized, and there is little power sharing with labourers that I can see - these characteristics describe fairly well the era we are living through now. 

For younger people - say under 40 - this kind of lifestyle is all we have ever known, and therefore we tend to believe that things have always been like this and always will be. People over 40 may remember a time when society was different, when morals were stricter, when people stayed married, courtesy and honour played more prominent roles in relationships, and some things remained sacred. These are characteristics of a previous age. 

The power of this theory is in the ability to step back and place our current way of life into a larger context. We can use the theory to see clearly where we have been, as well as where we are going. As more and more people tire of life on the money treadmill, a new era begins to take shape, just as spring always and inevitably takes shape from winter. Disgruntled intellectuals and warriors displaced into the labourer class join forces with the masses to bring about massive social change. Such a change is known as a revolution and with it comes the dawning of a new age. 

One of my favorite quotes, from Peter Drucker's 1993 book Post Capitalist Society goes:
Every few hundred years in Western Civilization, there occurs a sharp transformation . . . Within a few short decades, society rearranges itself - its world-view; its basic values; its social and political structure; its arts; its key institutions. Fifty years later, there is a new world, and the people born can't even imagine the world in which their grandparents live and into which their own parents were born.

We are currently living through just such a transformation.
The larger point is that things are not static - they never are. In fact, with the rapid roll-out of technology and the educational potential it brings, things now are less static than they have probably ever been. 

The idea of revolution may not sound like something to be optimistic about, but Batra points out that revolutions need not be violent. If the revolution is led by warriors, yes it probably will be - but this country already had one violent revolution. It is not necessary that we repeat the event. 

As Batra puts it:
Rebelling against the elite is not easy; it takes immense courage to oppose a regime and become a revolutionary. So those who muster such courage, no matter what their initial grouping, are the true soldiers who then start another warrior age, which begins with an ascending or magnanimous phase. With the return of the warrior mentality, many features of the first eras of warriors make a comeback, but some novel and progressive institutions also appear because of inevitable social evolution through time. The acquisitors, having lost their credibility, go back to a lower status. The public remembers their acts of oppression and imposes restraints on their acquisitiveness. This way the social cycle goes on and on..."
In other words, if the revolution is led by intellectuals, there is no reason it need be violent. The dissolution the British as well as Soviet Empires were both revolutionary changes that took place with very little bloodshed. 

We can already see the seeds of a new era being sown and sprouting. One of the major signs is the increasing awareness of the problems that our current way of living creates - socially, psychologically, economically, environmentally and spiritually. Just one such example is this article: Why Having More No Longer Makes Us Happy. Yes, this era is winding down in an endgame, but the ending is just a prelude to a new beginning. I will have much more to say about this in future instalments. 

But don't get too excited just yet. Before we get to the New Golden Age that Batra speaks of, things are probably going to have to get much worse for many people. This creates the impetus for massive change, as people reach a point where they can no longer stand the prevailing conditions and are moved to take action. But Batra makes the point that the future is not set in stone. With knowledge of the social cycles, we can help speed it up through our own actions, and with awareness of how it is likely to unfold, we are better armed to stay out of harm's way.