TheRealNews on Oct 6, 2011
Michael Hudson: A public option in banking will be a structural answer to the power of finance
European banking crisis causing a constitutional crisis of the European Central Bank; Germany; the myth of Social Security in the US.; bank balance sheet crisis; food, fuel and climate crisis; the super congress; debt deflation; FHA lawsuit against the banks; criminalization the financial sector; Modern Monetary Theory; the coming lost decade; debt cancellation.
In today’s looming confrontation the ratings agencies are playing the political role of “enforcer” as the gatekeepers to credit, to put pressure on Iceland, Greece and even the United States to pursue creditor-oriented policies that lead inevitably to financial crises. These crises in turn force debtor governments to sell off their assets under distress conditions. In pursuing this guard-dog service to the world’s bankers, the ratings agencies are escalating a political strategy they have long been refined over a generation in the corrupt arena of local U.S. politics.
by Prof. Michael Hudson
July 29, 2011
Mr. Obama’s scare tactics to get Democrats to vote for his Republican Wall Street plan
The Wall Street bailout melodrama should be viewed as a dress rehearsal for today’s debt-ceiling non-crisis.
You know that the debt kerfuffle is as melodramatically staged as a World Wrestling Federation exhibition when Mr. Obama makes the blatantly empty threat that if Congress does not “tackle the tough challenges of entitlement and tax reform,” there won’t be money to pay Social Security checks next month. Continue reading
democracynow on Jul 22, 2011
President Obama and Republican House speaker John Boehner are allegedly close to a $3 trillion deficit-reduction package as part of a deal to raise the federal debt ceiling before an Aug. 2 deadline. But the deal is coming under fire from both Congressional Democrats and Republicans — part of it calls for lowering personal and corporate income tax rates, while eliminating or reducing an array of popular tax breaks, such as the deduction for home mortgage interest.
Updated: July 16, 2011; added transcript
The jobless recovery; the debt ceiling and default; China; Greece; banks, not countries, receive the bailouts; financial warfare; IMF and EU; European Central Bank; US credit default swaps; US agricultural exports create food dependency; currency devaluation devalues the price of labor; class war of banks against the rest of society
RussiaToday on Jul 7, 2011
This week Max Keiser and co-host, Stacy Herbert, report on selling Greece’s sovereignty and Spain’s El Gordo. In the second half of the show, Max talks to economist Michael Hudson about the IMF assassins sent in to destroy the Greek economy.
Free money creation to bail out America’s elite financial speculators, but not for Social Security or Medicare
Only the “Crazies” Get the Bank Giveaway Right
Financial crashes were well understood for a hundred years after they became a normal financial phenomenon in the mid-19th century. Much like the buildup of plaque deposits in human veins and arteries, an accumulation of debt gained momentum exponentially until the economy crashed, wiping out bad debts – along with savings on the other side of the balance sheet.
Financial strategists do not intend to let today’s debt crisis go to waste. Foreclosure time has arrived. That means revolution – or more accurately, a counter-revolution to roll back the 20th century’s gains made by social democracy: pensions and social security, public health care and other infrastructure providing essential services at subsidized prices or for free. The basic model follows the former Soviet Union’s post-1991 neoliberal reforms: privatization of public enterprises, a high flat tax on labor but only nominal taxes on real estate and finance, and deregulation of the economy’s prices, working conditions and credit terms.
The Greek bailout provides an opportunity for privatization grabs
When Greece exchanged its drachma for the euro in 2000, most voters were all for joining the Eurozone. Their hope was that it would ensure stability, and that this would promote rising wages and living standards. Few saw that the stumbling point was tax policy. Greece was excluded from the eurozone the previous year as a result of failing to meet the 1992 Maastricht criteria for EU membership, limiting budget deficits to 3 percent of GDP, and government debt to 60 percent.
Replacing Economic Democracy with Financial Oligarchy
“But if a country is still not delivering, I think all would agree that the second stage has to be different. Would it go too far if we envisaged, at this second stage, giving euro area authorities a much deeper and authoritative say in the formation of the country’s economic policies if these go harmfully astray? A direct influence, well over and above the reinforced surveillance that is presently envisaged? Jean-Claude Trichet, President of the ECB on receiving the Charlemagne prize for European unity (Aachen, 2 June 2011)
By Michael Hudson
May 30, 2011
Is Iceland’s rejection of financial bullying a model for Greece and Ireland?
Last month Iceland voted against submitting to British and Dutch demands that it compensate their national bank insurance agencies for bailing out their own domestic Icesave depositors. This was the second vote against settlement (by a ratio of 3:2), and Icelandic support for membership in the Eurozone has fallen to just 30 percent. The feeling is that European politics are being run for the benefit of bankers, not the social democracy that Iceland imagined was the guiding philosophy – as indeed it was when the European Economic Community (Common Market) was formed in 1957.
by Prof. Michael Hudson
Global Research, April 11, 2011
About 75% of Iceland’s voters turned out on Saturday to reject the Social Democratic-Green government’s proposal to pay $5.2 billion to the British and Dutch bank insurance agencies for the Landsbanki-Icesave collapse. Every one of Iceland’s six electoral districts voted in the “No” column – by a national margin of 60% (down from 93% in January 2010).
The vote reflected widespread belief that government negotiators had not been vigorous in pleading Iceland’s legal case. The situation is reminiscent of World War I’s Inter-Ally war debt tangle. Lloyd George described the negotiations between U.S. Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon and Stanley Baldwin regarding Britain’s arms debt as “a negotiation between a weasel and its quarry. Continue reading