Is the West backing a Gangster State in Ukraine?

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What the hell is happening in Ukraine?  Where’s the reporting of the frightening developments described in the video clip below?  Contrast these quotes from the clip with the relative complacency of most MSM reports:

Leading intelligence author William Engdahl’s investigated post-coup Ukraine (and) finds what’s happened is “so astonishing as almost to defy belief”.

Ukraine’s new coalition calls officially for “pre-emptive nuclear strikes”.

Pensions halved to $3 a day, heating costs doubled, forced sell-off of the country’s land and resources – all part of IMF “knee-breakers” imposed round the world, now in Ukraine.

Kolomoysky has his own private army, and set up the Azov Battalion of openly Nazi mercenaries, which London’s Sunday Times admits is behind the bloodshed that has caused revulsion among the population.

In another leaked call an official reveals Kolomoysky’s also behind the Odessa massacre, the deadliest attack so far in Ukraine’s civil war, where he paid Nazis from the infamous Right Sektor Party that burnt, slaughtered and strangled dozens of civilians to death, including elderly women.

Leaked conversation between Deputy Nestor Shufrich and Fatherland leader Yulia Timoshenko:
Shufrich: What shall we do with the eight million Russian(-speakers) in Ukraine?
Timoshenko: Kill them with nuclear weapons.

The neo-Nazis are paying regular reconnaissance visits to nuclear power stations, with obvious intent to hold the whole world hostage. They have paid visits to bacteriological laboratories and, according to the people working there, got hold of bacteriological material that can be used for biological warfare. Other terrorists have merely been dreaming of such weapons – Ukrainian ones, with the connivance of or on direct orders from someone in the junta, may actually use them.

Governments are now voicing concern that Kiev may be violating the international Missile Technology Control treaty, and the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation.

Intelligence author William Engdahl ‘… tiny power cabal that have so much power in Washington, they want not only a new cold war, they want a new hot war.’

 

Michael Hudson speculates that ‘This could well be another test on how far things can be pushed, building on Latvia.’ He assesses the current situation:

There was a Chilean-type military coup d’etat there. The people of Ukraine do not sign off on the IMF IOUs and sign the transfer of property. The coup d’etat leaders in Kiev signed up and what do they want? Their aim is not to help Ukraine, their aim is to get rich for themselves and to move as much of their money into London, New York and other centers as they can.

But in addition to the profiteering, Andrew Korybko writes that full-fledged ethnic and cultural ‘cleansing’ of the Donbass region is intended.

This flagrant violation of fundamental human rights is being absolutely ignored by Western governments, which are usually the first actors to prematurely blow the whistle on any suspected human rights violations and threaten military intervention. It is now seen that the human intervention/responsibility to protect (HI/R2P) rhetoric and slogans were nothing more than charades to pursue ulterior geopolitical purposes. In fact, contrary to their established HI/R2P “credentials”, the West, particularly the US, is actually aiding and abetting the Kievan regime that plans to carry out the cleansing [5]. Military advisors, millions in funds, and CIA and FBI support have flooded into Ukraine since the coup, and more than likely, they will all be directed eastwards towards violently suppressing the federalist protesters [6]. In this manner, the US is directly complicit in any and all war crimes that Kiev’s conventional or mercenary forces carry out, up to and including Koval’s ethnic and cultural cleansing plans. Thus, the six million people of Donbass are faced with the same type of humanitarian disaster that was thought to have been forever vanquished from Europe almost 70 years ago.

 

Meanwhile

Top Five Ukraine Stories a Western Mainstream Media “Fail”

If you live to the west of Russia’s borders, what you see and hear from embattled Ukraine is not the whole story. And without the whole story, your version of truth turns out to be a lie. Below are some graphic stories that are necessary to share, if only to show the Donetsk independence movement side of a civil war brought on by major powers’ failure to compromise. Kiev’s new government has apparently been given a credit card to invoke a genocide of collateral damage.

The final story in the Butler piece is repeated in the video clip below.  It is a street interview by Graham Phillips with a woman in Lugansk and speaks for itself of the desperation of ordinary Ukrainians caught up in this terrifying mess.

40 years on Allende’s murder is still significant

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The global community continues to experience the direct consequences of the overthrow of the democratically elected President of Chile, Salvador Allende on 9/11/1973.  With the torture and deaths of 30+k people, Chile was turned into a real-world economic experiment, implementing Chicago-style monetary plans, now known as TINA (there is no alternative) or the Washington consensus.

Neoliberals call Chile’s 1974-90 period a miracle, but it is best seen as what should have been a warning against imposing similar policies in other countries. Under what became known as the Washington Consensus the economy was subjected to totalitarian libertarian doctrine. Public enterprises were given away to the junta’s supporters with virtually no money down. The result was mass bankruptcy, economic collapse, and a polarization of wealth and political power that transformed the country that had been one of Latin America’s most stable middle-class democracies.

STANDARD SCHAEFER

Fortunately, Mrs Thatcher’s determination to repeat the same policies in the UK, stopped short of imposing monetarism through a military dictatorship (although I’m not sure that the miners thought that she eschewed violence).  Instead, we have had the same measures of privatisation, financialisation, and pensions capitalism delivered by stealth in small increments over the last 30 years.  The strategy is starve the public services of funding, introduce competition and when the service is failing, privatise with the mythologies of efficiency and cheapness.  The coalition government is justifying rushing through many of the end-game plans of Margaret Thatcher’s cabinet using Shock doctrine/Disaster capitalism.  In other words, on the basis of a global banking crisis that Margaret Thatcher’s Big Bang deregulation of the financial sector made inevitable.

[E}fforts to turn Salvador Allende’s death into a martyrdom for democratic socialism obscure the most important legacy of the coup. Not only did it give rise to one of the twentieth century’s most violently repressive regimes, it inspired subsequent financial dictatorships to use privatization schemes to consolidate their power.

STANDARD SCHAEFER

It is now well established that the CIA were involved in the Chilean coup which resulted in the brutal dictatorship of  Margaret Thatcher’s friend, General Pinochet.

Michael Hudson explains why the US were pivotally involved:

What seems to have upset Mr. Kissinger was the fact that socialism came to power through democratic election. It was a basic axiom of right-wing “free market” philosophy that socialism could only take over by dictatorship. Allende’s victory showed this premise to be wrong. So a theory of society and doctrine of the global future was being threatened.

A second axiom was that socialist planning could not provide a prosperous economic environment, and especially that prosperity could not be gained by breaking away from what now is called the Washington Consensus. Under Allende, Chile sustained a hefty 8.9 percent increase in its GNP and at first succeeded in reducing the country’s inflation rate. During his nearly three years in office he gained support by providing the poor with better access to housing, education, food and health care than previously.

Kissinger felt that the United States needed to show that socialism was bound to fail economically. Rather than leaving this to the “free market,” America used the famous “invisible hand” ­ not Adam Smith’s invisible hand of free enterprise, but the covert hand of CIA destabilization.

One remaining problem had to be countered. That was the threat that Chile’s army might obey its constitution and promote the country’s independence rather than favoring U.S. policies. The leading Chilean general was a constitutionalist who believed that the army should stay out of politics. He had to be murdered in order to replace him with a more U.S.-oriented general, who turned out to be Augusto Pinochet ­who quickly became an acolyte of the Chicago Boys. 

This has shades of US’s involvement across the globe, and does not augur well for the democratic removal of neoliberalism.

The following video clip is a 2002 response from Chile to the US following the other 9/11 – the attack on the Twin towers – and speaks  eloquently about the horrors of what was unleashed for the benefit of the US-backed oligarchy.

9-11-1973: Chile coup

http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/10/20/an-interview-with-michael-hudson-on-chile/

Government Debt and Deficits Are Not the Problem – Private Debt Is

Government Debt and Deficits Are Not the Problem – Private Debt Is

Published on Mar 24, 2013

Michael Hudson: Why do they call for governments to balance the budget by pushing the economy at large deeper into debt, while trying to save the banks from taking a loss?

Why do they need lobbyists when they’ve price fixing and debt deflation?

Massive bonuses being paid at the top of the financial sector and massive donations are being made to the Conservatives by the financial sector.  The global markets are rigged, with credit/low interest rates ensuring that the redistribution of wealth flows steadily upward and offshore. Max Keiser, Stacy Herbert and Michael Hudson explain:

Keiser Report: Whimsical Price Tyranny (E446)

Published on May 18, 2013

In this episode of the Keiser Report, Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert examine stories about those who, using spoof trades, bogus securities and fictitious capital, steal real wealth and income. They discuss how it is that every benchmark index is rigged and introduce the concept of the ‘bonus benchmark.’ In the second half, Max talks to Dr. Michael Hudson, author of The Bubble and Beyond, about debt and wage deflation and about the intersection of interest rates and wages going back to David Ricardo when wages were measured against the price of bread to today when they are measured against the price of debt.

Why do the 1% need lobbyists?  Because, in the absence of regulation, the impetus for capitalism is rampant exploitation to exhaustion, in the relentless accumulation of wealth.  Like over-parasitism, the 1% are killing the hosts that feed them.

Mrs Thatcher was not the wicked witch of the west …

The original story of the ‘Wonderful Wizard of Oz’ was allegorical… the wicked witch of the west represented the US West Coast banks of the 1890s… and the wicked witch of the east, the East Coast banks. (See the Money Reform Party‘s explanation below.)

However, there are unquestionably parallels between the role of the banks in the 1890s depression in America and Mrs Thatcher’s continuing impact on the UK of 2013.  As Francis O’Grady said at the Northern TUC conferencethe economic and social disasters facing the people of Britain today can all be traced back to Thatcher’s rule … and the coalition government is hell-bent on completing what she started.

Specifically in regard to the banks, Mrs Thatcher built upon the policies set in place by Barber, Heath’s Chancellor, abolishing banking regulations and facilitating the financial sector’s freedom to wreak the present havoc.  But rather than being one of the banking witches, Mrs Thatcher was the banks’ minion.

In fact, Mrs Thatcher doesn’t seem to have realised until far too late, that she was letting the genie out of the bottle of banking regulations:

The irony was that most of Mrs. Thatcher’s friends and heroes were businessmen, manufacturers who made or dealt in products, not financial manipulators. But inevitably, her privatization policy led her to rely on the City financiers. Her autobiography and that of Nigel Lawson reflect their growing annoyance and even fury with the way in which the bank underwriters chosen to advise the government turned privatization into a vehicle to grow rich very fast. Mr. Lawson is scathing as to the the City institutions’ lack of competence, exceeded only by their greed (always pointing out how much more venal their global partners were, to be sure). But once the government had chosen these institutions as its partner, the die was cast. It was unable to find a way to control the underwriters, and feared to disengage.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/04/michael-hudson-thatchers-legacy-of-failed-privatizations.html#jgWVO1V5v3DC8DFg.99

It was pretty inevitable that trusting bank underwriters as advisors, the ultimate beneficiary of Mrs Thatcher’s privatisation would be the City of London:

.. the square mile of financial institutions that obtained the quickest benefits and turned the program into something rather unanticipated by Mrs. Thatcher and Mr. Lawson. The rentiers for their part seem to have perceived the Thatchers and Friedmans as pawns, an advance infantry of promoters wrapping austerity economics in populist garb – policies that otherwise would have been difficult (if not impossible) to sell to voters.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/04/michael-hudson-thatchers-legacy-of-failed-privatizations.html#jgWVO1V5v3DC8DFg.99

As Owen Jones writes in the Independent:

History is not one grand soap-opera, in which Great Men (and they are – unlike Lady Thatcher – mostly deemed to be men) at the top pull huge levers that dictate the fate of millions. “Men make their own history, but they do not make it as they please; they do not make it under self-selected circumstances, but under circumstances already given and transmitted from the past,” Karl Marx wrote over 160 years ago. 

Michael Hudson explains the purpose of Monetarism, the economic theory used to justify Mrs Thatcher’s political platform of privatisation:

Ostensibly a theory of money and prices, monetarism became an ideology to attack government spending and organized labor. The theory’s guiding idea was that price levels could be determined by controlling the money supply – by the central bank managing the rate at which government deficits were monetized. Meanwhile, wage-push inflation could be countered by taking legal steps to break the power of unions to strike and to declare boycotts. The effect was to remove economic planning from the hands of government. The vacuum would be filled by global investment bankers. Efficient management was to take the form of maximizing stock-market gains, not the promotion of full employment and other non-market social welfare objectives….

The real reason why monetarists seek to control the Treasury or Finance Department and the central bank in every country is to achieve their political ends. From their position in these financial control centers, they put the brakes on government operations across the board, or promote other pet policies. Monetarist doctrine provides the ideological wrapping to present this control as a form of idealism and individualism.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/04/michael-hudson-thatchers-legacy-of-failed-privatizations.html#jgWVO1V5v3DC8DFg.99

The solution is provided by the Money Reform Party:

Money does not have to be based on debt, nor indeed does it have to be based on precious metals. Real wealth is the goods and services that people create for each other. Money is merely a means of exchange. It could be created by HM Treasury and spent on providing public services, saving us all a modicum of taxation, and then the economy would not have to be saddled with large debts.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Courtesy of the Money Reform Party

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was first published in Chicago in 1900. Its author, L. Frank Baum, was the editor of a South Dakota newspaper and a supporter of William Jennings Bryan who stood three times, unsuccessfully, as a U.S. Presidential candidate for the Democratic Party.

The particular concern of both Baum and Bryan was the nature of the money supply then prevalent in the United States, and in the Mid-Western States in particular.

In America during the 1890s, as in Britain, there had been a severe depression. Many businesses had gone bankrupt, farmers forced to sell up, factories closed and workers made unemployed. True, some farms in the Mid-West were suffering from drought, but most were still capable of growing food; the businesses and factories were still capable of providing the things that people needed; the workers still wanted to work to provide those things, and people would still want the goods and services produced if they had the money to buy them.

The money in the USA then, as now, was entirely created by the private banking system. The pretence existed then that money was based on gold. (Even now some people still think that it is!) The major banks, based on the East and West coasts, could vary the amount of money in circulation, lending more to encourage commercial activity, then fore-closing on loans to put people out of business, enabling the banks to acquire their businesses cheaply.

Baum and Bryan wanted money to be based on silver, not gold, as silver was more readily available in the Mid-West, where it was mined. Such a money supply could not be manipulated by the banks. So the story of the Wizard of Oz starts with a cyclone in the form of imagined electoral success for Bryan…

Dorothy, a sort of proverbial ‘Everywoman’, lands on the Wicked Witch of the East (the East-coast bankers), killing her, so freeing the Munchkins, the down-trodden poor, but the Wicked Witch of the West (the West-coast bankers) remains loose.

To deal with her and to get back to Kansas (normality), the Good Witch of the North, representing the electorate of the North (this is less than 40 years after the civil war), tells Dorothy to seek out the Wizard of Oz (‘oz’ being short for ounce, the means of weighing both gold and silver). She also gives her a pair of silver slippers (as they were in the book – they became ruby ones in the film). Only these silver slippers will enable her to remain safe on the yellow-brick road, representing the bankers’ gold standard, as she heads towards the Emerald City, representing Washington DC.

On her journey, Dorothy encounters a Scarecrow, representing the farmers, who do not have the wit to understand how they can end up losing their farms to the banks, even though they work hard to grow the food to feed a hungry nation. If only they could think it through!

Next, she encounters a Tin Woodsman, representing the industrial workers, rusted as solid as the factories of the 1890s depression, and who have lost the sense of compassion and co-operation to work together to help each other during hard times. Also, a spell cast upon him by the Wicked Witch of the East meant that every time he swung his axe, he chopped off a bit of himself – he downsized!

Then the growing party encounters a Cowardly Lion, representing the politicians. These have the power, through the power of Congress and the Constitution, to confront the Wicked Witches, representing the banks, but they lack the courage to do so.

Dorothy is able to motivate these three potent forces and leads them all towards the Emerald City, whence ‘greenbacks’ had once come, and an encounter with the omnipotent and wonderful Wizard of Oz.

The Wizard of Oz is initially quite majestic and apparently awesome, but he turns out to be a little man without the power that people assume he possesses. He does, of course, represent the President of the United States. With the Wizard’s illusion of power shattered, he is replaced by the Scarecrow who would ‘be another Lincoln’.

The Wicked Witch of the West, fearful for her own power, then attempts to destroy Dorothy but is herself dissolved in a bucket of water, as rain relieves the Mid-West drought, saves the farmers’ livelihoods and prevents repossession by the banks.

The Good Witch of the South, representing the Southern electorate, tells Dorothy that her silver slippers, silver-based money, are so powerful that anything she wishes for is possible, even without the help of the Wizard. Dorothy wishes to go home. There all is now well, because the land has a stable and abundant money supply.

 

Still a Pertinent Message

So ends this famous modern American ‘fairy-tale’. Its true message has been lost to the mists of time and the demands of Hollywood, but its message is no less pertinent now than when it was written.

William Jennings Bryan was neither the first nor the last American politician to try to reform the US money supply. In fact, two money reformers achieved the office of President and attempted to put money reform into action, but just like in the Oz story, the ‘Most Powerful Man in the World’ was not as powerful as people believed.

In 1865, Abraham Lincoln introduced the original ‘greenbacks’, which were paper money issued by the US Government, largely to pay for the Federal war effort during the civil war. It was ‘fiat’ money, money made legal tender by Act of Congress. Unfortunately, Lincoln died suddenly a few weeks later and his plans died with him.

In 1963, John F. Kennedy issued Executive Order 11110 which would have removed the power of money creation from all US private banks, including the privately-owned Federal Reserve, and invested that power in the US Government. Unfortunately, Kennedy died suddenly a few weeks later and his plans died with him.

 

The Problems of Debt

In the USA 100% of the money supply is created by the private banks. In Britain the figure is over 97%. In the rest of the world, the figure is estimated to be over 95%. All this money is created as a debt. It is created when people borrow money, as banks do not lend existing money; they just create new money out of thin air to lend.

Money created as a debt by the banks bears a charge of interest. This increases the amount of money that the economy owes by an amount greater than the amount in existence. This means that the economy is a saddled with a debt that can never be paid off, merely passed around like a game of Pass-the-Parcel in a Belfast pub. It is like a game of musical chairs, where someone has to lose out.

A Solution

Money does not have to be based on debt, nor indeed does it have to be based on precious metals. Real wealth is the goods and services that people create for each other. Money is merely a means of exchange. It could be created by HM Treasury and spent on providing public services, saving us all a modicum of taxation, and then the economy would not have to be saddled with large debts.

 

The Money Reform Party

Like Baum and Bryan, the Money Reform Party recognises that the money supply is a political issue. The MRP has been created expressly to educate the British people about the money supply so that, through the greater awareness of the electorate (good witches, scarecrows, tin-woodsmen and Munchkins all), our cowardly lions… sorry, our politicians will no longer be able to ignore this vital issue.

Postscript:

The Wizard of Oz is an allegorical tale just begging to be used ..  Martin Rowson’s latest cartoon succeeds brilliantly in depicting Cameron as ‘Dorothy’, Fat cat (the bankers) as ‘Toto’ leading the way; Osborne as ‘the lion with no courage’, IDS as the ‘straw man with no brain’ and they carry aloft the ‘tin man with no heart’, Mrs Thatcher.  All dancing along the ‘yellow brick road’ of the BBCs timidity in playing the Munchkin song ‘Ding dong, the witch is dead’… but the BBCs ‘yellow brick road’ could also stand for the non-reporting of Lansley’s privatisation of the NHS; the true impact of the Benefit cuts; Gove’s education plans; the 30% cuts in local government; Osborne’s lies about the economy…  And the true nature of ‘money’ disguised by Margaret Thatcher’s ideology of ‘Monetarism’.

Banks too big to fail, too big to jail – Michael Hudson

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Michael Hudson Discusses Why We Need Public (nationalised) Banks to Prevent Cannibalization of the Economy on Real News Network
Read more at http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/03/michael-hudson-discusses-why-we-need-private-banks-to-prevent-cannibalization-of-the-economy-on-real-news-network.html#JWfRHS4fUL7MflkI.99

Are we heading to an economic crash in the next few years?

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Quote of 2013 – “Marx was too optimistic about banking”

Why? Because although he described banks as parasitic, Marx believed that they would eventually evolve such that they would:

‘make productive loans to finance industry. The aim was for banks to do something new, that no economy had done in the past: make loans not merely to ship and market goods once they were produced, but to finance new capital investment by manufacturers and producers, as well as by the public sector to build infrastructure. The idea was for these investments to create profits out of which to pay the interest and the principal back to the lenders.  This was defined as productive lending.’

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/09/michael-hudson-on-how-finance-capital-leads-to-debt-servitude.html#BjdeoUqAOHOiiyGY.99

Marx never envisaged General Pinochet and Margaret Thatcher’s ‘Pension Fund Capitalism’ as being a way to exploit the workers’ wages.  Under Defined Pension Plans, the workers know what they pay in but not what they will get out because the pensions are all invested in the casino financial sector and profits skimmed off for the financial elite.

‘The turning point was in 1980, when the Reagan Administration was elected in the United States, right after Margaret Thatcher led Britain’s Conservatives into office and began the big privatization sell-offs at enormous, unprecedented commissions that made the financial sector richer than ever before. Drexel Burnham led the practice of turning the stock market into a vehicle for banks to emulate their real estate loan departments by creating credit for corporate raiders to take over companies, load them down with debt and extract profits to pay out as interest. This was done by downsizing the labor force, shifting over to non-union labor, and where possible, renegotiating employee pensions downward or simply grabbing the pension funds or Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs) to pay creditors. So corporate finance became destructive instead of productive.’
http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/09/michael-hudson-on-how-finance-capital-leads-to-debt-servitude.html#BjdeoUqAOHOiiyGY.99

“The idea is that you can make money without  producing an economic surplus… so the economy will shrink and shrink… We need a renewal of classical economics.”

Are we heading to an economic crash in the next few years?

Published on Jan 11, 2013

Dr. Michael Hudson, Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends, joins Thom Hartmann.

The United States is the only developed nation in the world that doesn’t guarantee paid holidays, paid annual leave, or paid maternity leave. They’ve taken away our sense of safety in the workplace – as safety laws and regulations are continually getting watered down. Heck, they’ve even taken our money by flattening our wages during a time of increased productivity. And in New Hampshire – Republicans are doing the bidding of Corporate America to get rid of our lunch breaks. This is nothing short of theft – and pretty soon, we’ll be handing over the shirts on our backs, just so our bosses can squeeze out whatever profits they can. It’s also symptomatic of a larger war being wages on not just working people – but entire cities and even our federal government by the financial elite.