NEWS AND OPINIONS FOR MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2008

Why Prince Charles is Right: We Need GMO-Free Food and Agriculture for Food Security

Russia Is Preparing for the Endgame in the Caucasus
Russia recognizes Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent from Georgia. So, it's done unless the U.S. means to have a full blown war with Russia.

ABC Reporter Arrested in Denver Taking Pictures of Senators, Big Donors
Now even the major networks can't do regular, everyday coverage. Of course, it was an ABC cameraman in Denver, not one for FOX. Although, it was a FOX news team that got beaten around in Los Angeles during the large Mexican-American demonstrations not all that long ago. Whatever became of that?

Protesters denied access to attorneys, forced to march in leg shackles, ACLU charges
These kids weren't even warned by the police. That was intentional. The fascists are trying to get away with everything they can, all to intimidate young protesters. The police are trying to make dissent impossible.

Why was Cheney's guy in Georgia before the war?
Cheney is planning to be in Georgia in early September. His Deputy Assistant for National Security Affairs, Joseph R. Wood, was in Georgia just before Georgia attacked Ossetia. Cheney is denying that that visit was about the then upcoming invasion. Do you believe that? I sure don't.

Profile: Mikheil Saakashvili

For at least two weeks before the outbreak of this month's war, Russian forces made a series of provocative moves. Jet fighters entered Georgian airspace, mysterious gun battles broke out inside South Ossetia.

Mr Saakashvili duly took the bait.

Hogwash — this is an Anglo-American so-called intelligence propaganda piece.

Palin: Big Oil's new champion
Sarah Palin is John McCain's choice for Vice President. She's all about traditional, Republican Big Business. She's in Big Oil's pocket. She's no environmentalist. She's a get-it-while-it-lasts person — no Golden Rule advocate.

US, UK begin war games in Persian Gulf
How many aircraft carriers does the U.S. have in the area? They have at least 3 and possibly 5. They are worried that Russia will sell hi-tech missiles to Iran. Iran still hasn't been shown to be enriching anywhere near weapons grade, but that hasn't stopped Israel from planning to attack. It hasn't stopped the U.S. from planning to be right there ready to knock out Iran if Iran strikes back. Of course, they'll blame Iran for not having knuckled under.

Jimmy Carter Conspicuously Absent From Podium
The best former President in American history was marginalized at the Democratic National Convention. Carter put Human Rights on the map for the entire world. He made mistakes as President, but his term in office was the most peaceful in my lifetime. Also, he just barely lost the election, and the only reason he did was due to the October Surprise that the Republican dirty-tricks artists had arranged so that the American hostages being held in Iran wouldn't be released until after the election.

Jimmy Carter has been absolutely correct concerning that the Palestinians and Israelis should and could make total peace; however, the militant Zionists (false-hearted) don't want peace. They want land (covetous), the more the better in their view.

City inspectors board up raided home for 'code violations'

Neighbors were angry that the city was boarding the home, too. One neighbor yelled to police officers, "We have a crack house next door that you do nothing about. But then you're going to board up the home of these kids! This is pure propaganda and you should be ashamed of yourselves!" Indeed, the home next door did have a number of visible code violations: tall grass and weeds, trash in the yard. Neighbors said they call about problems with the home all the time, and nothing is ever done.

It's Fascism.

Labor Groups Challenge Retail Giant Wal-Mart on Pressuring Employees to Vote Against Obama

Biden, Obama and The Blood-Dimmed Tide
Chris Floyd rips Joe Biden over the anti-poor Bankruptcy Bill. Not only is Biden a self-professed Zionists of the Likudnik variety, but he's a corporatist and a phony liberal (real liberal that is).

Transcript: CNN interview with Vladimir Putin

Super Imperialism: Mike Whitney Interviews Michael Hudson

...the financial model has been a great success from the vantage point of the top of the economic pyramid looking down? The economy has polarized to the point where the wealthiest 10% now own 85% of the nation's wealth. Never before have the bottom 90% been so highly indebted, so dependent on the wealthy. From their point of view, their power has exceeded that of any time in which economic statistics have been kept.

You have to realize that what they're trying to do is to roll back the Enlightenment, roll back the moral philosophy and social values of classical political economy and its culmination in Progressive Era legislation, as well as the New Deal institutions. They're not trying to make the economy more equal, and they're not trying to share power. Their greed is (as Aristotle noted) infinite. So what you find to be a violation of traditional values is a re-assertion of pre-industrial, feudal values. The economy is being set back on the road to debt peonage. The Road to Serfdom is not government sponsorship of economic progress and rising living standards; it's the dismantling of government, the dissolution of regulatory agencies, to create a new feudal-type elite.

The former Soviet Union provides a model of what the neoliberals would like to create. Not only in Russia but also in the Baltic States and other former Soviet republics, they created local kleptocracies, Pinochet-style. In Russia, the kleptocrats founded an explicitly Pinochetista party, the Party of Right Forces ("Right" as in right-wing).

In order for the American people or any other people to assert greater control over monetary policy, they need to have a doctrine of just what a good monetary policy would be. Early in the 19th century the followers of St. Simon in France began to develop such a policy. By the end of that century, Central Europe implemented this policy, mobilizing the banking and financial system to promote industrialization, in consultation with the government (and catalyzed by military and naval spending, to be sure). But all this has disappeared from the history of economic thought, which no longer is even taught to economics students. The Chicago Boys have succeeded in censoring any alternative to their free-market rationalization of asset stripping and economic polarization.

My own model would be to make central banks part of the Treasury, not simply the board of directors of the rapacious commercial banking system. You mentioned Henry Liu's writings earlier, and I think he has come to the same conclusion in his Asia Times articles.

...The Fed has turned "maintaining order" into a euphemism for consolidating power by the financial sector and the FIRE sector generally (Finance, Insurance and Real Estate) over the "real" economy of production and consumption. Its leaders see their job as being to act on behalf of the commercial banking system to enable it to make money off the rest of the economy. It acts as the Board of Directors to fight regulation, to support Wall Street, to block any revival of anti-usury laws, to promote "free markets" almost indistinguishable from outright financial fraud, to decriminalize bad behavior – and most of all to inflate the price of property relative to the wages of labor and even relative to the profits of industry.

The Fed's job is not really to impose the Washington Consensus on the rest of the world. That's the job of the World Bank and IMF, coordinated via the Treasury (viz. Robert Rubin under Clinton most notoriously) and AID, along with the covert actions of the CIA and the National Endowment for Democracy. You don't need monetary policy to do this – only massive bribery. Only call it "lobbying" and the promotion of democratic values – values to fight government power to regulate or control finance across the world. Financial power is inherently cosmopolitan and, as such, antagonistic to the power of national governments.

The Fed and other government agencies, Wall Street and the rest of the economy form part of an overall system. Each agency must be viewed in the context of this system and its dynamics – and these dynamics are polarizing, above all from financial causes. So we are back to the "magic of compound interest," now expanded to include "free" credit creation and arbitraging.

The problem is that none of this appears in the academic curriculum. And the silence of the major media to address it or even to acknowledge it means that it is invisible except to the beneficiaries who are running the system. — Michael Hudson ...Professor at University of Missouri, Kansas City (UMKC)

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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.
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