Based on a Speech to the International Reciprocal Trade Association, Puerto Aventuras, Quintana Roo, Mexico, September 20, 2011
First I want to thank you for inviting my wife Karen and me to join you in this beautiful land of ocean, sunshine, history, and mystery. Second, I want to offer the organized barter movement—and by this I mean the barter associations that have placed their work on a sound professional business level—my heartfelt congratulations. I congratulate you not only for acting in the face of the global monetary crisis but also for taking active and practical measures for putting something real in its place.
A little more than a minute after Challenger was launched at the Kennedy Space Center on a frigid winter morning 25 years ago, the shuttle broke to pieces when an o-ring joint in one of the solid rocket boosters failed, and the seven Challenger astronauts died.
That 1986 Challenger launch was arguably the high water mark of the U.S. manned space program. Through Mercury, Gemini and the Apollo lunar exploration program, as well as numerous unmanned scientific probes, we had boldly answered the call of space. There was no apparent limit to the adventure, sense of national accomplishment and economic benefits space exploration could confer. NASA and the White House intended the Teacher-in-Space and the proposed Journalist-in-Space flights to convey that excitement to the world.
by Jamie Walton
American Monetary Institution (AMI) researcher
Guest Writer Dandelion Salad
Oct. 18, 2010
Review of Richard C. Cook‘s book, We Hold These Truths: The Hope of Monetary Reform
First edition (Tendril Press) [This book is available from the American Monetary Institute, at $30, postpaid.]
This book is for anyone and everyone who wants to solve the world’s deepening crisis and to avoid a looming catastrophe.
Richard C. Cook hits all the economic nails on the head in his latest book, We Hold these Truths: The Hope of Monetary Reform. Very rarely does a book appear that lays out what’s really wrong with ‘the economy’ and what’s required to really fix it. This is one of those very rare books. It’s a must-have handbook to build your own clear and deep understanding of what’s really going on, why, how, and what can be done about it.
Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) was an Austrian philosopher and esotericist and founder of one of the key modern spiritual movements in the West. He is best known for his books and lectures before and after World War I, when he founded the Anthroposophical Society with its present-day headquarters in Dornach, Switzerland. After World War I, Steiner and his work were criticized viciously by right-wing nationalists in Germany, which caused him to give up his residence in Berlin. Among the critics was Adolf Hitler, who attacked him in print as a traitor to Germany for his efforts to promote peace.
The work of prophetic thinkers like Rudolf Steiner makes clear that the history of humanity proceeds through the evolution of consciousness, where changes take place in the psyche of people well in advance of their outward manifestations. Thus an understanding of what is happening before our eyes is never simple, nor can it be taken at face value. Discernment requires a level of knowledge that can only be achieved through study and insight.
“You all are the house, you’re the bookie. [Your clients] are booking their bets with you. I don’t know why we need to dress it up. It’s a bet.”
– Senator Claire McCaskill, Senate Subcommittee investigating Goldman Sachs (Washington Post, April 27, 2010)
Ever since December 2008, the Federal Reserve has held short-term interest rates near zero. This was not only to try to stimulate the housing and credit markets but also to allow the federal government to increase its debt levels without increasing the interest tab picked up by the taxpayers. The total public U.S. debt increased by nearly 50% from 2006 to the end of 2009 (from about $8.5 trillion to $12.3 trillion), but the interest bill on the debt actually dropped (from $406 billion to $383 billion), because of this reduction in interest rates.
Each of the authors in this timely collection digs beneath the gilded surface to reveal a complex web of deceit and media distortion which serves to conceal the workings of the global economic system and its devastating impacts on people’s lives.
The article cites a May 9, 2009, meeting at the U.S. Department of Energy, where a chart was presented that shows world liquid fuel production falling by half from 2012 to 2030. Of course most of this liquid fuel is petroleum.
No one can seriously doubt that the huge amounts of borrowed federal dollars poured into the economy since Barack Obama became president has prevented even more jobs from being lost than might otherwise have been the case in the current devastating recession. It’s impossible, however, to come up with a “real” number, because no economist has a good enough handle on matters to sort out all the variables at play, including readjustments due to the fall of housing prices, low interest rates, a slightly improved export environment, rebounding of depleted inventories, new highway construction resulting from stimulus spending, etc. Still, let’s look at some facts about the current so-called “recovery”:
A friend asked me at brunch recently about the situation in Iceland. Here is a commentary:
The small nation of Iceland–population 320,000–can’t produce much of anything that is in demand in the international markets. During the 60s and 70s Icelandic Airlines had a pretty good business running the cheapest flights you could find between the US and Europe, but that is long in the past. They do catch fish out of the dwindling North Atlantic fisheries, and tourists show up who appreciate the stunning natural beauty of a landscape with geysers, hot springs, and an abundance of wilderness hiking. But that’s about it.
Many thanks to those readers who have stayed in touch with me and continued to follow my blog as my wife and I continue packing for our move to a location in the Southern Appalachian mountains.
Lately our reading has included many interesting topics. We are currently studying The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English (Penguin, 2004) and finding it a deeply inspiring source of wisdom. We have been researching the Essenes, who some say wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls. Also of great interest and importance are the translations of Essene wisdom by Edmond Bordeaux Szekely which we encountered through our Australian friend Omna Last.
As the world slides closer daily to what the Shivapuri Baba described as a 6,000-year societal catastrophe, it is certainly curious to observe how those who fancy themselves the rulers of mankind continue to attempt to gather all power, authority, and wealth into their hands.
Instead of attempting to devise a rational program to ameliorate the economic and ecological damage that has been perpetrated through financial control of the means of production based on a system of expropriation and usury, the ruling class and its minions in the military-intelligence complex imagine that they can create safe havens for themselves while ignoring the welfare of the masses upon whom they depend for their fabulous levels of income and wealth. Not to mention the forces of nature whose resources they think they own.
Yes, the distinction between earned and unearned wealth is indeed critical. And yes, I agree with your identification of monopoly control of resources as being at the root of the problem.
Of course the chief monopoly is that of creation of money which governments share with the international banking oligarchy. It is through the monopoly of money-creation that the oligarchs and militarists gain hegemony. Keynesian economics was the stroke of genius by which unlimited wealth could be funneled into the hands of the war-mongers with the bankers reaping the profits.
Lately an incredible quote from President Andrew Jackson’s 1837 farewell address has been circulating on the internet. For all those who have begun to see the evils that have befallen our nation since it was taken over by the banking oligarchy this is a MUST READ.
. . . In reviewing the conflicts which have taken place between different interests in the United States and the policy pursued since the adoption of our present form of Government, we find nothing that has produced such deep-seated evil as the course of legislation in relation to the currency. The Constitution of the United States unquestionably intended to secure to the people a circulating medium of gold and silver. But the establishment of a national bank by Congress, with the privilege of issuing paper money receivable in the payment of the public dues, and the unfortunate course of legislation in the several States upon the same subject, drove from general circulation the constitutional currency and substituted one of paper in its place.