.. infested ...
.. by speculators ...
.. and outright swindlers
Thesis/Subtitle: Total failure of our so-called 'leadership' & economic system..
[update 1, update 2 (a bewdy).]
Shares resume slide on US, Europe financial fears
Online business reporter Michael Janda
Updated August 19, 2011 18:59:14
«More than $40 billion was wiped off the value of the market - the 3.5 per cent sell-off driven by a combination of weak US economic data and initial moves by Germany and France to introduce a financial transactions tax.
The net result of overnight action was a widespread return to the view that the US and Europe would double-dip into recession.
ANZ posted $4.2 billion in underlying profits for the nine months to June, a rise of 16 per cent on the previous year, but its profit growth had slowed in the third quarter due to consumer caution about borrowing.
ANZ's shares slipped 4.5 per cent to $19.50, while its main rivals posted falls between 2.9 and 3.6 per cent.»
Comment 1: Oh, dear! 'The market' is crashing - again? No, still.
Comment 2: Note "introduce a financial transactions tax;" it's always amused me that 'the pundits' offer some reason for 'market' movements - as if they could divine the mood of the (investor/speculator) masses (imagine eye-shades, smoky back-rooms), but this one additionally illustrates a propaganda technique, namely pointing the finger at something they don't like, laying the ground-work: “Well, just proposing xx caused a mini-market-melt-down, so we'd better not have any of that!”
Comment 3: The perverse reaction (= falling stock price) resulting from a +ve report (namely a 16% profit-rise as compared to last year) - illustrates the *irrationality* of the (investor/speculator) 'players.'
It gets worse. The 'transactions tax' is aimed largely at computer-trading, whereby computer programs written by the self-termed 'masters of the financial universe' monitor 'the market' (sometimes by outright illegal means, like seeing a big buy/sell order before execution, then trading in advance = insider-trading), exploiting any and all 'market' movements (sometimes quite small), with the clear intention of capitalising on those movements - and, note, thus 'skimming' any potential profit from more conventional trades. So far, (not) so good.
Then we get a few more true nasties, namely short-selling (including the 'naked' variety), and various 'derivatives' - like the CFDs I mentioned here. These nasties are more or less bets, noting that even if 'minimal,' a bet is still a bet = gambling.
More on betting; they say on the one hand, that the EU is coming under pressure, and on the other that speculators are active, not quite making the connection, namely that speculators are gambling against EU countries (PIIGS), and thus the EU itself - actually making an EU-crash more likely. What I don't know and can't imagine, is who these speculators are making their bets with; i.e. who are the mugs taking on the losing side of the bets?
Actually, we can sometimes see such mugs at work; both the Japanese & Swiss 'authorities' have made recent steps to 'protect' their currencies, in direct contradiction of so-called 'free market' theory, and especially in the Swiss case, an impossible task - 7mio Swiss trying to 'fight' the speculators from 300mio US & 500mio EU? Hopeless.
A neoliberal 'article of faith' is that 'the market' is all-knowing; apart from being an obvious absurdity on its face, the irrationality mentioned above disproves it. In like manner, most of neoliberalism can be disproved - yet our so-called 'leadership' continues to push the erring neoliberal ideology upon us, we the long-suffering sheople.
It only takes a moment's reflection on the growing numbers of unemployed, the similarly growing numbers in poverty, and the growing numbers lacking health-insurance (all especially so in the US), the general fear almost everywhere (keywords jobs! Jobs! Jobs!), the deliberately caused house-price inflation (Howard/Costello's ½CGT, say) - to see that since Thatcher/Reagan, things have been getting seriously buggered.
It gets even worse. The lessons learnt from 1929++, the measures developed to recover from the resulting depression, and the measures developed to prevent a recurrence of both have *deliberately* been ignored, negated and/or dismantled.
The stock market and associated banksters, plus a few other hangers-on (insurance, real-estate manipulators) form what's called the FIRE-sector. It is this sector which is *deliberately* destroying our economy, via depredations such as globalisation (= wage depression/job emigration), in addition to their erring neoliberal ideology (privatisations, down-sizing, leaning&meaning) and other terms like 'supply-side' and 'economic rationalism.' Starting sometime before/around/with Thatcher/Reagan, the rich via their agents have pushed the economy further towards a cliff, making life hell for the average wo/man in the street. All deliberate, all planned - with the connivance and active assistance of our so-called political 'leadership' - from both of the mainly two-party 'sides,' noting that bipartisan = un- & anti-democratic. In fact, these people doing us wrong, all mentioned in this paragraph - are our, we the sheople's enemies.
Update 110820, 10:51; PS It's not all doom & gloom; some 'people of substance' can see what's wrong, and offer ways out. But 1st, a little aside: There are two words one should be reluctant to deploy, namely 'unbelievable' and 'unacceptable.' Although it may be 'scarcely believable' that such villainy as neoliberalism could be forced upon us by our so-called 'leaders' = 'representatives,' it is nevertheless happening - and besides, believing is defined as 'accepting in the absence of evidence.' Although having neoliberalism forced upon us is definitely not acceptable, it's up to us, we the people to stop it. Sooo, here is a little reading-list containing both back-up for what I have written above (= substantiation), and practical suggestions to 'improve' the world's economic performance. To pre-empt a bit, allow me to repeat one of my 'moral planks,' namely 'do no harm,' and remind that we're all in this together; if a greedy minority were to destroy our world's comfortable life-support system, it's down the tor-let for us all. I locate the error to before/around/with Thatcher/Reagan; apart from "TINA!" (but there always was and still is), Thatcher said: "... there is no such thing as society" (but there is, ditto). Too many 'followed' Thatcher/Reagan, it's a big part of why we're in such a mess. And note that when the mess comes home to roost (recent London riots, say), the reaction from Cameron is the same as all along from our rulers, namely more and vicious repression - again, obviously wrong. The list, publ-time-ordered:
September 6, 2009
How Did Economists Get It So Wrong?
By PAUL KRUGMAN
«When it comes to the all-too-human problem of recessions and depressions, economists need to abandon the neat but wrong solution of assuming that everyone is rational and markets work perfectly.»
Comment: Plus, factor in greed and fraud, and note that if criminals can get away with theft, they will = restore proper regulation, and totally ostracise all immorality.
America for Sale: An Exclusive Excerpt from Matt Taibbi’s New Book on the Economic Meltdown
«Our cash-strapped country is auctioning off its highways, ports and even parking meters, finding eager buyers ...»
Comment: "Cash-strapped" primarily because of tax-cuts, and those mainly off the rich. Any idiot can perform or promise tax-cuts - as Abbott shows us, ad nauseam. The problem is that there are *required* services which cannot be cut; *someone* (= the 'neoliberal' user, as opposed to the community) has to pay, which ignores egalitarian processes, extra unemployment and the introduced interest and gross management payouts; privatise to 'for profit' and expect profit before performance, possibly 'deadly' when it's medicine.
Why Banks Aren't Lending: The Silent Liquidity Squeeze
Friday 15 July 2011
«Alone among states, North Dakota had the wherewithal to keep credit moving to small businesses when they needed it most. BND's business lending actually grew from 2007 to 2009 (the tightest months of the credit crisis) by 35 percent.»
Comment: Truly intriguing; fiat $s are 'printed' at no cost but are loaned out at interest; if the state collects that interest it can use it to pay for *required* services and simultaneously provide the $s for the borrowers to pay their interest-bill, a 'balanced' circulation is possible and an inflation-rate of *zero* targeted, at the same time as lightening the tax 'burden.' May sound like magic, but works very well, for the fortunate North Dakotans. Yes, this implies nationalising the banks - and defeating rogue banksters' depredations at a stroke. No bad thing.
The Market Has Spoken: Austerity Is Bad for Business
by Ellen Brown
August 6, 2011
«The budget crisis is an artificial one, and the current “solution” will only guarantee a deeper recession and more widespread suffering. Rather than obsessing over deficits and debt, the government needs to turn its focus to jobs, sales and quality of life.»
Comment: The smart-arse US (plus snivelling quisling sycophantic hangers-on) are attempting to defeat some of the immutable laws of the universe, such is their hubris. Of course, it's a fools' errand, but they have the guns - which implies armed theft; pretty close, and see my 'the world's worst terrorists.' Economically, they have in their sights welfare $s = socialism, treated as communism = a disease (in their minds, and as one 'economic argument' they point to Stalin's and/or Pol Pot's murdering and no, that makes no sense at all); other targets are Marx, Fordism & JMK = Keynesian theories. Austerity is not just bad for business, it is guaranteed to make things far, far worse - and is a condemnation of those who are trying to force it, being IMF, the target's own politicians or externals like Merkel & Sakozy et al.. The only viable countervailing solution to austerity may be tumbrels for the push-perpetrators.
Economic Hubris - Fixing the economy: We got it wrong
by Prof. James K. Galbraith
August 15, 2011
«To go further, let's admit that our problem is not budget deficits or public debt — not now and not later. Let's agree that cutting Social Security and Medicare — inflicting pointless pain on the elderly — will not help. Let's build a new financial system to serve public purpose and private business. And let's start to act on our actual needs and problems: jobs, foreclosures, public investments, energy security and climate change.»
Comment: Sound words.
August 19 - 21, 2011
Guard-Dogs for the Banks
The Case Against Rating Agencies
By MICHAEL HUDSON
«To acquiescence in such economically destructive financial behavior is the opposite of fiscal responsibility. Cutting federal taxes and Social Security payments to obtain a more positive S&P “opinion” would give banks an ability to “pull the plug” and force privatization and anti-labor austerity plans by refraining from rolling over the U.S. debt – and cutting taxes Tea-Party style rather than funding spending by taxation on a pay-as-you-go-basis.»
Comment: As usual; one should read all of the citations through - I did; not all may be pertinent and/or correct - but it's better than nothing, and nothing would be far better than neoliberalism - which is killing our economies, for all except the rich, super-rich & the obscenely rich.
The obvious place to start is to tax those rich back to reality, and restore social justice - even if that gets up the greedies' collective nose & bugger Reagan, Thatcher and all such neoliberal tyrants.
Update 110820, 14:21; PPS Examine this 'just in' one, at your leisure:
Titanic Battle or Insider Trading?
The S&P Downgrade and the Bilderbergers: All Part of the Plan?
by Ellen Brown
August 18, 2011
«The latest bet was made on July 21 on trades of 5,370 ten-year Treasury futures and 3,100 Treasury bond futures, reported ETF Daily News.
Now the investor’s gamble seems to have paid off after Standard and Poor’s issued a credit rating downgrade from AAA to AA+ last Friday.
Whoever it is stands to earn a 1,000 per cent return on their money, with the expectation that interest rates will be going up after the downgrade.
The Securities Exchange Commission announced on August 8 that it is investigating the downgrade. According to the Financial Times, the move is part of a preliminary examination into potential insider trading.
Whatever can be said about the first two weeks of August, their market action was unprecedented, unnatural, and bears close observation.»
Comment: Have to laugh; includes/extends themes above + here, here, here & here. Note the word "bet," and the possible return; again one poses the Q: Who takes up the losing side of such bets, why, and in this case, how can they possibly pay up? Tip: Never gamble, if you can't afford to lose.
After you've read it all, make you go 'hmmm?'
the stock exchange
is a gambling-den
.. infested ...