Monday, 14 April 2014 09:29
By Ellen Brown, Web of Debt | News Analysis
Taxpayers are paying billions of dollars for a swindle pulled off by the world’s biggest banks, using a form of derivative called interest-rate swaps; and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has now joined a chorus of litigants suing over it. According to an SEIU report:
Derivatives . . . have turned into a windfall for banks and a nightmare for taxpayers. . . . While banks are still collecting fixed rates of 3 to 6 percent, they are now regularly paying public entities as little as a tenth of one percent on the outstanding bonds, with rates expected to remain low in the future. Over the life of the deals, banks are now projected to collect billions more than they pay state and local governments – an outcome which amounts to a second bailout for banks, this one paid directly out of state and local budgets.
It is not just that local governments, universities and pension funds made a bad bet on these swaps. The game itself was rigged, as explained below. The FDIC is now suing in civil court for damages and punitive damages, a lead that other injured local governments and agencies would be well-advised to follow. But they need to hurry, because time on the statute of limitations is running out.
The Largest Cartel in World History
On March 14, 2014, the FDIC filed suit for LIBOR-rigging against sixteen of the world’s largest banks – including the three largest US banks (JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Citigroup), the three largest UK banks, the largest German bank, the largest Japanese bank, and several of the largest Swiss banks. Bill Black, professor of law and economics and a former bank fraud investigator, calls them “the largest cartel in world history, by at least three and probably four orders of magnitude.”
LIBOR (the London Interbank Offering Rate) is the benchmark rate by which banks themselves can borrow. It is a crucial rate involved in hundreds of trillions of dollars in derivative trades, and it is set by these sixteen megabanks privately and in secret.
Interest rate swaps are now a $426 trillion business. That’s trillion with a “t” – about seven times the gross domestic product of all the countries in the world combined. According to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, in 2012 US banks held $183.7 trillion in interest-rate contracts, with only four firms representing 93% of total derivative holdings; and three of the four were JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, and Bank of America, the US banks being sued by the FDIC over manipulation of LIBOR.
The Common Sense Show
April 14, 2014
China, allied with Russia, is in the process of taking over the United States, or should I say that our public officials are giving away the country to them. In the following paragraphs, the analysis is limited to Chinese based interests, but the same could be said for the Russians as well.
In my previous article, it was clearly demonstrated that the Chinese are preparing, among other things, to assume control of supplying America’s energy needs at a cost that they deem appropriate. It is a simple business proposition. They own our debt, we have defaulted and they are here to be compensated.
The Giveaway of American Energy to the Chinese
The Bundy affair affirmed the fact that Chinese are being handed control of solar energy inside the United States and that this is being facilitated by Senator Harry Reid. The takeover of American energy is being manifested on many fronts, but in particular, it is being concentrated on the takeover of the solar industry in the new Agenda 21 designation with the so-called “Solar Energy Zones”.
These Solar Energy Zones are appearing in multiple locations in such places as Southwestern Arizona, Barstow, CA. and Victorville, CA., and now I am receiving on te ground reports from Colorado and Utah as well. These designated Solar Energy Zones have very similar variables in common. The following chart indicates that the debt compensation will consist of complete control of the solar industry and will be expanded to other energy sources (e.g. hydroelectric and nuclear power). Again, here is a chart which demonstrates the commonalities shared by these Solar Energy Zones.
Coincidence or Conspiracy?
Chinese Solar on Bundy’s Ranch vs Arizona Solar Farm
Chinese money backing project vs Chinese money involved in project
Creation of Agenda 21 “Solar Energy Zone” vs Creation of Agenda 21 “Solar Energy Zone”
Located near a Canamex Highway (I-15) vs Located near a Canamex Highway (1-10)
Located near a major energy source (Hoover Dam) vs Located near a major energy source (Palo Verde Nuclear Plant)
Located near a major military base (Nellis AFB) vs Located near a major military base ancillary facilities (Luke AFB)
Further, the above chart indicates that the Chinese will control a good portion of American transportation. The proximity of Solar Energy Zones to the Canamex Highway Corridor system speaks to this intent. There is also a military aspect of this that should jump out at the reader and this will be discussed in detail in the next part in this series.
Cliven Bundy, can a cowboy defeat the Marxists?
In the end, there is only one reason why the Bundy ranch was besieged. President Obama had to have taken the lead. He knew it was going on and he sanctioned it. Beyond oil, solar, and Chinese Communists with money, lurks Obama’s Agenda.
InfoWars has found a smoking gun in the case of embattled rancher Cliven Bundy. A lucrative contract – which will benefit Harry Reid and his son Rory Reid – specifically mentions the need to rid the land of Cliven Bundy. In addition, Natural News pointed out that the BLM is in the business of selling lucrative oil and gas leases. It does answer the question, Why now?
There is a much bigger picture in all of this, however, and that is the fact Mr. Obama believes the government should control the land and water in the United States. He sees the government as the protector of the nation’s resources. It is his belief. He does not respect private property – it is the government’s to take. That should now be obvious to everyone.
Mr. Obama is social engineering citizens off their land into congested hubs to preserve the land for nature and to have it available for government use, maybe even to share the resources with U.N. member nations such as China, because he believes in globalism, an extreme form of globalism. He has already expressed a desire to share the wealth from our resources with the world through treaties such as The Law of the Sea treaty.
Washington Is Humanity’s Worst Enemy
Paul Craig Roberts
How does Washington get away with the claim that the country it rules is a democracy and has freedom? This absurd claim ranks as one of the most unsubstantiated claims in history.
There is no democracy whatsoever. Voting is a mask for rule by a few powerful interest groups. In two 21st century rulings (Citizens United and McCutcheon), the US Supreme Court has ruled that the purchase of the US government by private interest groups is merely the exercise of free speech. These rulings allow powerful corporate and financial interests to use their money-power to elect a government that serves their interests at the expense of the general welfare.
The control private interests exercise over the government is so complete that private interests have immunity to prosecution for crimes. At his retirement party on March 27, Securities and Exchange Commission prosecutor James Kidney stated that his prosecutions of Goldman Sachs and other “banks too big to fail” were blocked by superiors who “were focused on getting high-paying jobs after their government service.” The SEC’s top brass, Kidney said, did not “believe in afflicting the comfortable and powerful.” In his report on Kidney’s retirement speech, Eric Zuesse points out that the Obama regime released false statistics in order to claim prosecutions that did not take place in order to convince a gullible public that Wall Street crooks were being punished. http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/04/09/65578/
Democracy and freedom require an independent and aggressive media, an independent and aggressive judiciary, and an independent and aggressive Congress. The United States has none of the above.
The US media consistently lies for the government. Reuters continues to report, falsely, that Russia invaded and annexed Crimea. The Washington Post ran an obviously false story planted on the paper by the Obama regime that the massive protests in former Russian territories of Ukraine are “rent-a-mobs” instigated by the Russian government
By Pam Martens: April 14, 2014
President Obama Nominates Mary Jo White for Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Since bestselling author Michael Lewis appeared on 60 Minutes on March 30 to promote his new book, “Flash Boys,” and explained how the U.S. stock market is rigged; and Brad Katsuyama, the head of IEX, an electronic trading platform who plays a central role in the Lewis book, did the same on CNBC a few days later, the debate has gone viral.
But Lewis and Katsuyama were not the first to blow the whistle on rigged U.S. stock markets. Sal Arnuk and Joseph Saluzzi, Wall Street insiders and co-founders of Themis Trading LLC literally wrote the book on “Broken Markets” in 2012 and have been exposing details of the rigging on their blog ever since.
Wall Street Journal reporter, Scott Patterson, mapped out the exotic and corrupt order types permitted by the stock exchanges to fleece the little guy in his 2012 book, “Dark Pools,” which follows the trading career of Haim Bodek, who has set up his own web site to blow the whistle on just how badly the stock market is rigged.
The Fed sacrificed the foundation of middle class wealth–stable housing values–to boost bank profits.
Lest you think the phrase “death of the middle class” is hyperbole, please examine these two charts, keeping in mind the middle class by definition must be in the middle of income/wealth distribution–conventionally, between 40% and 80%, i.e. the 40% between the bottom 40% and the top 20%.
See that little red wedge? That’s the bottom 80%–the entire middle class and everyone below the middle class.
Here’s another look at the wealth distribution: the middle class’s share of wealth is modest, unless you define the top slice of households just below the top 1% as “middle class.” But since the top 19% cannot be in the “middle,” attempting to boost the wealth of the middle class by including the wealthy is truly Orwellian.
Why has the middle class eroded? We can start by looking at income. As noted yesterday in Fed to the Sharks, Part 1, household income for the bottom 90% has stagnated for 40 years.
The next chart shows how financialization boosted asset valuations in waves of boom and bust. Some of the first two waves of financialization leaked into wages, but the Fed’s bubble-blowing since 2009 has failed miserably to increase incomes: disposable income fell off a cliff in 2009 and has continued falling, despite the Fed’s blowing new bubbles in bonds, stocks and housing.