by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog
The Great Recession has exposed “capitalism with Western characteristics” for what it truly is: banker cultural worship, but also banker political governance.
The reality that this is the real Western governance model has been thrown into sharpest relief in Europe: I hypothesise it’s because its government (the EU) is so much newer than in the US or almost everywhere else.
It is also because it has been so blatant: even Eurozone countries which didn’t need a 21st century banker bailout had to ruin their own economies to pay for them.
We all know about bailouts – what’s less publicised is: Central bankers in the G7 nations and the Eurozone have all been given the power to set fiscal policy, to decide social policy priorities and to render domestic elections irrelevant. Western nations are no longer democracies – and they were all, every one, merely the types of democracies which pointedly refused to evolve after 1917 – but “bankocracies”.
Japan is the king of QE – both in creating it and in quantity, and they also pioneered QQE (Quantitative and Qualitative Easing). Germany has been the driving force behind printing massive amounts of money – while hypocritically criticising it publicly. The world is left in a situation similar to 1940: these (economically fascist) nations are poised to (foreclose) invade much of the globe. Again!
How is it that they lost WWII but could start WWIII just to prevent a debt jubilee, which would hurt them most of all?
Answer: America was a fascist, segregated country in 1940, and both Germany and Japan teamed up with the US. Richard Werner’s pioneering, cross-cultural The Princes of the Yen details Japan’s excessive US-aping, whereas the rabid anti-socialists of West German-dominated Germany toadies to Washington shamelessly.
When ___ Bubble(s) 2 explode, money will rush back to these three countries, the dust will clear, and then their (repo men) armies will follow.
“Nobody should believe that another half century of peace in Europe is a given – it’s not,” said Angela Merkel in 2011. Her aim was to use EU-nationalism (not an oxymoron) to shut people up from complaining about banker bailouts and failed far-right economic policies.
But who should Europeans be worried about… the Portuguese? The Irish? The Czechs? No, they should worry about Germany – Merkel was merely displaying the “strike first in a crisis” sense of fear which has pervaded German culture in the past century. Americans have this sentiment in abundance as well.
The question is: is it more likely that a nation goes to war to definitively break free from this neoliberal pan-European project, or more likely that Germany and France invade to stop someone from trying not to pay the debts they incurred after joining the Eurozone (to bail out French and German bankers)?
Surely, it is the latter: the idea that some racist, neo-Nazi far-right group comes to power – in a county which also has an intimidating army – is far less likely than belligerence from Berlin and Paris.
Brexit has been made as protracted and as painful as possible – which Paris openly warned would happen – and that was just to leave the EU. Berlin and Paris are not about to treat anyone leaving the Euro with kindness.
German smugness (as if everybody secretly wants their shamefully bloodstained modern culture, LOL) and hypocrisy continues to be incredibly galling: for a decade they have railed against the ECB even though ECB never does anything against Germany’s interests. There is a reason they put it in Frankfurt – for German control!
Germany (their 1%, of course) has profited like no other European nation from QE. It is not at all correct to say that within the EU it is a question of “North versus South” or even “Western Europe versus the former Soviet/Eastern Europe” – the only proper analysis is 1%-ers versus 99%-ers (a class analysis), and there simply are more 1%ers in Germany than in Bulgaria, Portugal, Ireland, etc.
Dictators commit crimes and get away with it: In bankocracies bankers have the same exorbitant privilege
This 10-part series (this is Part 10) uses as its jumping-off point the 2018 book Collusion: How Central Bankers Rigged the World by Nomi Prins, a former Wall Street executive who saw the light and is now informing on the crimes of Western imperialism-capitalism. Prins gives a thorough and chronological account of central banker doings in key areas – Mexico, China, Brazil, Japan and Europe – ever since US banker crimes set off the Great Recession in 2007. The essence of her thesis is that the US orchestrated collusion among the central bankers of many of the G20 economies and the Eurozone in order to primarily save busted US banks, and then also to maintain the 1%-enriching policies of QE, ZIRP and no-strings attached bailouts.
I have often written about the complete lack of democracy and accountability of the Eurogroup, which governs the Eurozone, but we must remember – this is not unusual in Western bankocracies.
Prins relates how in July 2016 the IMF’s Independent Evaluation Office did an internal investigation, “… admitting its top staff made many misjudgments in dealing with the entire European debt crisis, especially Greece’s economic situation. The staff’s ‘cultural of complacency’ and a tendency toward ‘superficial and mechanistic’ analysis brought up questions about who was ultimately in charge of the IMF. The report also admitted that internal investigators were unable to obtain key records or delve further into the activities of secretive ‘ad hoc task forces’.
It was a largely ignored bombshell. Christine Lagarde was not accused of obstruction. The reported cited the approach to the Eurozone as characterized by ‘group think’ and intellectual capture. There were no alternative plans on how to deal with a systemic crisis in the Eurozone or a multinational currency union.”
In the Eurogroup this is called “normal and legal”.
That the IMF is operating in such a fashion is not at all surprising – this is how major Western monetary institutions work: in secret, in collusion, with secret groups pulling the major strings, with no accountability, with terrible results for the 99%, with no accountability, in collusion with the corporate MSM, and with total complacency that their Western viewpoint on economics is 100% correct (despite all the failure) and that it should be exported.
That’s a very tough, but accurate, sentence. Anyone living in a non-Western nation should take notice and be on guard against adopting a Western economic model – it only looks good on movie screens, not in the light of reality.
The fact that the media failed to relay this bombshell – such a key mea culpa from an international institution whose Western importance and reach is rivalled only by the European Central Bank, Fed and Eurogroup – indicates just what a failed press system the West has. The failure is purely due to excessive amounts of capitalism in the Western system, which translates into, “Free speech must be bought.” Without a publicly-dominated media, with journalists who fear no legal retribution and have guaranteed jobs, it should be crystal clear that the private media will never investigate private banks. I am always surprised whenever I hear the term “Fourth Estate” – maybe during the 18th century “Capitalism with Western characteristics” corporate/bank interests didn’t dominate the Western system, but it is not the 18th century anymore.
The internal report also shows what the ECB has to look forward from Lagarde, who was – as I have written – selected to head the ECB mainly because she has already proven herself to be an empty cypher who can be easily manipulated.
The West either doesn’t know they have a bankocracy, or it can’t envision anything but a bankocracy
I credit Prins for discussing bringing this report, but she relates none of these obvious conclusions and merely moves on to the next chronological event. Her book is indeed excellent and indispensable, but I reiterate my overall criticism:
Her book is essentially conventional journalism – it is a recounting of historical decisions of central banker doings in key areas during the Great Recession. The only radical, non-Western change Prins really suggests is to move away from the dollar. Crucially, the world “class” is used less than a handful of times. What I have done is to take Prins’ useful chronological, globally-oriented journalism on modern economic history and analyse it from a perspective very different from her own: a pro-socialist and anti-imperialist one.
Prins’ inability to propose anything new is because the former Wall Streeter clearly supports capitalism essentially to the hilt. She may not like the crimes of capitalism, but she differs from socialists in that she cannot see that behind every fortune there is a crime; behind every profit is the sweat of a worker; that there IS an alternative, and one which other countries are implementing and advancing daily, and one which is far, far more democratic and egalitarian.
Other people have taken off the blinders.
My God – do you realise just how bad the Eurozone has been since it began? From 1999-2018 the average annual growth rate has been just 1.4%. Now wonder unemployment is so high in Latin countries, and horrible part-time work so prevalent in non-Latin Europe: job replacement doesn’t start until economic growth reaches 1.5%.
My God Part II – do you realise that there hasn’t been more than a decent whiff of revolution in the West despite 13 years of widespread popular (but not public) acceptance of the bankocratic nature of the Western system? The Yellow Vests are both personal friends and huge inspirations, but they are not even close to widespread acceptance in France, much less political power.
If I was a betting man I would bet that there won’t be this type of honesty – which necessarily requires an open rejection of the Western model – until the next bust in capitalism. Fortunately, such busts are inescapable, per Marx.
Both the critical Prins and the IMF cannot help but be inexorably impelled towards that bust – they have “no alternative plans”.
The beauty of Prins’ book is the way it documents how collusion to maintain QE – primarily to benefit imperial Rome (the US) – has always been the plan: In 2008 the US started QE, then in 2013 they handed the baton off to Japan and Abenomics. The US ended QE by 2015, but the ECB immediately started QE, fulfilling Draghis’ 2012 whatever it takes” code to investors. 2019 saw QE Infinity and back-to-bailouts in the US repo market. It’s been an endless shell-game relay.
For every QE there must be an unwind, no? Uhhh, apparently ‘no’ is their actual answer
Governments could buy unwanted financial assets and essentially burn them – allowing securities to mature and roll off the balance sheet without replacement. This was the Fed’s plan recently. However, such a plan is rather offset by the essential fact of capitalism which Prins gets, but does not really understand:
Capitalism IS collusion, always. The Fed is not going to betray the 1%, ever.
There is no “unwind”, no “taper” – they keep buying bad assets! And Prins lists why:
“There is nothing easy about letting go of the quantitative money addiction. Selling the trillions of dollars in securities banks have hoarded could very well cripple the system – again. Just as garage sale junk values are crushed when there are no buyers for the junk, associated ‘fire sales’ could see multiple asset prices come crashing down.”
I truly detest apocalyptic thinking. The next time you see a rainbow, remember: this is a symbol of the covenant God gave to Noah, and every other living thing, that He would never again destroy the world, via a flood or nuclear war or whatever. So just chill out a bit, doomsdayers. However, this is indeed the “everything Bubble”. Prins continues:
“Existing on a diet of artificial money and demand is anything but normal for an economic or financial system, even if it boosts (rich peoples’) markets to historic highs. If you take the air out of a tire, it collapses; if you take too much QE out of the system too quickly, the system collapses. If the flow, or even the possibility, of conjured money was to stop, markets relying on it would tank.”
And these markets have become unthinkably gigantic due to the infusion of massive QE money, of course.
There has been talk about “tapering” and an asset “unwind”, but it’s simply impossible (and against neoliberal ideology). For example, the US Fed made some efforts – they went from a peak of $4.5 trillion in assets in 2018 down to $3.7 trillion last year. What happened? There was trouble in the repo market, and – rather than allow any 1%ers to get their homes foreclosed on – the Fed resumed QE and are back up to $4.15 trillion. The takeaway should be that capitalism is collusion: with every flutter and dip of the markets where the 1% parks their money the US Fed will save them because they have a bankocracy.
But as Prins relates, this collusion is a G7/G20-wide affair now, post-2007 – this is what the Wests truly means when they talk about “globalisation”. It is not just the US – they are simply the imperial leaders, and if a nation follows the US they must switch to bankocracy as well.
In the Eurozone – the largest macroeconomy in the world, and also the weak link in the global economy – Mario Draghi came in with “whatever it takes” and he left last fall with “for as long as it takes”: QE restarted, at 20 billion euros per month, with no end date. It’s QE Infinity.
No unwind, no tapering – what about no more ZIRP (Zero Interest Rate Policies)?
If that is your question, you are behind the times: the battle now is over NIRP (Negative Interest Rate Policies), where banks literally suction off the savings of the average person’s bank account. This is a very real solution (not to endemic Western economic stagnation but) to the stable source of liquidity worries of the Western 1%. However, if the average person is perhaps too busy to study up a bit on QE they can certainly easily understand the impact of a negative rate on their savings account – last month Sweden ended their NIRP, becoming the first country to do so. Things change, but I think broad NIRP is a bridge too far, even in a bankocracy – they may as well just openly demand Roman tribute? Some still have room to manoeuvre: last week France announced that the interest on their saving (Livret A) accounts will fall from 0.75% to just 0.5% – its lowest level ever. A Livret A is what I have so… thanks again for that, French government. Former Fed chair Ben “helicopter money” Bernake keeps pushing NIRP, though, and we can’t put anything past American bankers.
Surely we have learned that much.
There is not much left to be said – this was a 10-part series. The failure is not QE per se, but the fact that QE did not go into the “real” economy and as many pockets as possible, but into areas (markets) which only the rich benefit from. QE is indeed central planning of the economy (a primary pillar of socialism) and denying that only shows either your close-mindedness or your inability to comprehend that the Western system in the 21st century has become a “bankocracy”.
I don’t think this is what the US Founding Fathers envisioned, but I also don’t care at all about that – I am not an “American Salafist”. Maybe Marx didn’t see it happening exactly like this but – again – who cares. I imagine I have this view because I am a daily hack reporter – our point of view is to emphasise what is going on today, seriously.
Postscript: So when is the Japanese debt jubilee arriving?
The US and Europe isn’t engaging in “domestic neo-imperialism”, you say?
But what’s a more valued natural resource than “money”? Money is natural as hell – that’s why they call it “money”. Why make the thing or grow the stuff to get the money when you can just cut out the annoying, grubby worker class and print the money directly to yourself? That’s been the biggest economic development of the 21st century.
Money, QE reminds, can definitely be created, farmed. However, its supply is not infinite, giving money even more the status of a “natural resource”.
QE has thus screwed up the natural world, and when the QE-bubble pops there is going to be a geopolitical reordering. The collusion Prins’ title alludes to – prop up US banks at all costs – is a reminder that the QE era has been precisely to avoid a geopolitical reckoning for US financial crimes and thievery.
As Prins wrote and I expanded upon: since 2007 the West has inadvertently done everything it could to go back to a multipolar world, i.e. facilitate the rise of China. China may historically be rather culturally isolationist (within the hugely diverse “continent” which China truly is), but it desires to cooperate under a “Heavenly Mandate” rather than rule like a German “Ubermensch”. Who will they cooperate with, then, to best transition away from the recent evils of Western bankocracy, as they eventually will must?
In studying the modern global economy one cannot help but be struck by the incredible success of Japan amid two centuries Western domination. Personally, I consider Japan “Western” because their 1% is so intertwined with the West. But regardless of labels the world truly keeps following Japan’s lead:
The nation which seems to have extracted the most benefit from the QE era is Japan, the originator of QE back in 2001. They were also the first to create QQE. They were the first to introduce NIRP. They are like the anti-Saudis: they have amassed huge influence in the West because of brains, not natural resource luck and powerful bodyguards.
Given the fact that only God is infinite, therefore QE has to end eventually, what about the only other option available: What of the debt jubilee?
Jesus son of Mary was the last person who seemed to seriously talk about it, other than the indispensable economist Michael Hudson, but let’s discuss it: a debt jubilee for individuals, sure, but not for the Western system, of course!
If a debt jubilee does not coincide with a radical political-cultural shift away from Bankocracy and “Capitalism with Western characteristics”, then what is the point? The same issues and exploitation will simply reappear.
Anyway, it’s not really feasible – it would require inter-ethnic & international cooperation, something which is only pushed in socialism and not capitalism. Among Western nations seemingly only Japan could actually pull off a debt jubilee. They are such an economic-intellectual powerhouse who cares if their debt is 500% of GDP – the debt is nearly all owned by Japanese.
This makes them like the decidedly anti-Western Iran or Cuba – both those nations could have debt jubilees if those governments decided to do so because the mass majority of their entire economies (the non-black market parts, anyway) are controlled by the government. No debtor army can be sent into any of these countries; no debtor lawyer army can be sent to take over those nation’s cabinets, either.
Furthermore, Japan is not like Germany – they are not tied to some supranational system which despises them. Nor is Japan geographically and culturally tied to the devious, non-patriotic, Western bankocratic systems. Instead, Japan is historically close to China, the period of Japanese invasion and fascism notwithstanding.
I always try to remind myself that history moves very, very slowly no matter what the 24/7 news cycle (which I am a part of) insists. In 2017 I wrote a 7-part series – based around the fake-leftist analysis of fellow European-dweller Yanis Varoufakis – on this very same QE economy.
However, not much has or could change in the intervening 2.5 years.
Back then I brought up “ancient” history: The future was supposed to be Japanese back in the 1980s, remember? It was delayed via the neoliberal Plaza Accord of 1985, in which Japan’s 1% handed their country’s hard-won surpluses to the US in a Petrodollar-like scheme. As I wrote in 2017: “From a capitalist, 1% point of view it made perfect sense and worked perfectly well, which is why Japan’s 1% adopted it. But from a nationalist or 99% point of view it was economic suicide.”
Japan has been an incredibly successful anomaly amid two centuries of White dominance, but they clearly have faults in their system – it is not expressly patriotic, nor is it also simultaneously propelled by egalitarian principles of international solidarity, but instead geared instead towards the international 1%. When the QE era they created and intellectually guided finally ends, Japan is going to have some radical changes to make – they will have the money and power to do that.
Therefore: I’d say the day the world order truly changes is not when Chinese boots land on Main Street (impossible, as China has never been imperialist), but when Tokyo tells Washington: we’re with our Beijing cousins now.
The global arrangement post-Great Depression 2 thus hinges on this: Socialism in Japan makes a comeback.
Heck, they never left – since the 1960s the Japanese Communist Party has consistently won 10% of their vote. That’s a far better record then French and Italian communists.
Who did you think Japanese imperialist/fascists were repressing at home prior to the US occupation? And do you think Emperor MacArthur was allowing Japanese socialists a fair shot, LOL?
When Bubble 2 breaks it’s not Islamic Socialism which will be unchained first, but East Asian Socialism (they are far less dominated, after all – it’s the oil curse).
So Japan breaks with the US and allies with China, and the US gulps as they finally have to honor its debt to their top two debtors – China and Japan. Yes, there are many US warships which will oppose that, but at least partially and in some way they will have to repay… such as their troops leaving East Asia.
Thus, Korea will become unified. Think they will go the German route and erase all traces of socialism? I doubt it. Socialist Vietnam, the country with the highest economic growth rate in recent decades, are right there to help if some 5th columnists try.
Thus we should not predict a a “Chinese century” – what an individualistic, Western conception of history? – but an “East Asian Socialist” one. Americans may talk about a “US unipolar world”, but others, like in Iran, always talked about a broader “Western” dominance.
People will say that’s impossible, but such people are anti-leftists and latent supporters of Western bankocracy.
Iranians will soon be talking about a “Eastern” dominance, but that’s ok: “Neither East nor West but the Islamic Republic” has been working fine as a mantra for 41 years. Giving a cold shoulder to the West necessarily implies facing east, anyway.
There must be a reckoning for the Western 1%’s 1980-2007 era of neo-imperially gutting their own societies, and then also for the 2007-2020+ era of QE theft.
The reckoning will be the reduction of West Eurasian influence, and the subsequent rise of East Eurasia.
Post-Postscript – can Westerners trust people over 50?
(It’s incredible for their youth class of today, but when Westerners said in the 1960s, “Don’t trust anyone over 30,” people who were 30 actually owned their own home and car!)
I doubt many young people are reading this. It’s useful to know your audience, so may I briefly add:
People under 35, a group which I only recently exited, have been the hardest hit by the QE era, in terms of reduced salaries/personal wealth, our total exclusion from the property market, and a job market which legally conspires against us. In talking with older people I often find them to be totally unsympathetic: they incorrectly believe that the conditions are as “easy” today as they were 40 years ago. Combine that with the natural but undesirable narcissism of being old – one is closer to the end than the beginning, and many just stop caring about what comes after they leave this Earth – and there is a real generation gap brewing in the West. However, unlike in the 1960s this generation gap is not cultural but economic – many older people are seeing it, falsely, as cultural. They are blaming a totally powerless group – the youth class – for conditions they had no hand in making. Last year I wrote extensively about the urban-rural gap, via a comparison of the Chinese Cultural Revolution and France’s Yellow Vests, but this culture gap will become nearly as yawning if the West’s elderly and middle-aged do not put themselves in the shoes of young people. You could start by reducing our rents, eh?
Young Westerners have no reason to support bankocracy, as many elderly do. This is a political gap which must be fomented! It would help if you passed around this series, LOL.
For those who read the whole series: Thanks for going along with me! Hope some of it was useful.
Here is the list of articles which were published in this 10-part series, and I hope you will find them useful in your leftist struggle!
Part 1 – Western central bankers: they’re God, they trust – a 10-part series on the QE economy
Part 2 – How QE has radically changed the nature of the West’s financial system
Part 3 – QE paid for a foreign buying spree: developing countries hurt the most
Part 4 – Iran vs Mexico: ‘economic inflows’ versus ‘economic independence’
Part 5 – Understanding the West’s obsession with inflation
Part 6 – The new ‘beggar thy neighbor’: wars to devalue labor, not currencies
Part 7 – Blaming China for the Great Recession… to avoid emulating China’s (socialist-inspired) success
Part 8 – 1941, 1981, 2017 or today – Europe’s mess is still Germany’s fault
Part 9 – Don’t forget the real root of Brexit: fear of Eurozone economic contagion
Part 10 – Bankocracies: the real Western governance model
(Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. He is the author of the books ‘I’ll Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China’ and the upcoming ‘Socialism’s Ignored Success: Iranian Islamic Socialism.’)
Ramin, you have excelled yourself. So many new slants, it is hard to know where to start. So, as an oldie who is now more interested in how to face his Maker than in how to save the world, I shall simply chew on your warning that Western youth of today — though privileged in many ways — are actually bearing the brunt of Western bankers assault on the West. So not to be annoyed at their silent complaisance with a deliberately dumbed down culture, but to pity the young people and try to waken their fire. They may have to face what their grandparents and great grandparents faced: poverty, squalor, ill health, a worldwide financial depression and Totalen Krieg. But at least those bygone generations were more educated about socialism, and more ready for revolution — they wrenched from Capitalists the the social privileges into which present 35-year-olds were born but which Capitalists are now wrenching back from the people of the West.
One pedantic query: why do you call it Bankocracy and not Plutocracy? Is there something about the structure of banking as such which gives modern plutocrats an advantage over ancient Biblical, Hindu, Greek or Roman debt slavers and financial extortioners?
Dr; M: Would it perhaps be because his term “bankocracy” is descriptive of the specific form of the contemporary Plutocracy? He is a journalist after all. His job is to describe and illustrate. For myself I see this global “bankocracy” as the final structural apotheosis of the long developmental history of capitalism, which stretches way back to its origins in ancient Rome and beyond. Trump’s current Secretary of State has made it clear that we are all still living inside the Ancient Roman policy of death squads targeting all those who struggle against the Plutocracy. Private control of money is the virus that from the very outset has poisoned the heart of the ever more dominant culture of patriarchal individualism. I am sure you can appreciate the dialectical implications of that. Hegel’s insight that “the owl of Minerva (wisdom) only flies at sunset comes to mind here. Please do stick around and enjoy the fun. Your posts are so appreciated.
Thank you Dr. Maroudas.
And Snow Leopard is on the right track, as usual, with why I used “bankocracy” instead of “plutocracy”.
Gotta give ’em something new in journalism, eh?
Interesting reading thank you will certainly spread it around! I see most things from an economic point of view!
I am in the old group and could not agree more !
‘unlike in the 1960s this generation gap is not cultural but economic – many older people are seeing it, falsely, as cultural. ‘
Just read the other day that in US, in 1990 when average age of Boomers was 35, they controlled 31% of property in US. milennials average age 31, control only 4%. So the wealth gap is very real and of immense proportions.
That’s a stunning figure Mr. Spangler.
I looked it up and it’s 21% and 3% respectively of national wealth in 1989, but that’s a huge, huge imbalance. Gen Xers didn’t fare much better – just 6% in 2004.
If you find a similar study with property please do post.
It’s easy to see how bankocracy started: in America.
Europe was still dominated by centralized, authoritarian governments, to whom some bunch of rich people being stronger than them was absolutely beyond unacceptable.
In America, however, with it’s at the time self-employment percentage of like 90% if I remember correctly, there was no need for regulation. Everyone was small. This is due to them having a crapheap of empty (or emptied of it’s original occupants), fertile land. You could always move inwards, get a big chunk of land and start on your own.
This changed when the land ran out – by the end of the 19th century. Suddenly, economic subjects started to behave more aggressively. The government, unused to this behavior, hoped their good old “the free market will fix it” scheme would correct the issue, but it didn’t. Monopolies appeared, and the bankers propelled themselves to the top of the food chain. But they were still under the thumb of Washington, even if by little.
This would change in WW1 and the great depression. Instead of correctly identifying the problem, the government mistakenly assumed that they should make it even easier for big capital to do it’s thing. And when everyone tried to become strong like America, they copied that. Bam, world ruined, due to naivete.
Fascists (especially Nazis) tried to subjugate big capital to the state, to reign it in for their own nationalistic projects, but this failed as we saw. Communists tried abolishing it all together, but mistakenly assumed people would be happy when you fulfill their most basic needs and nothing more (hence why western goods were seen as superior). Apart from China. They narrowly missed that problem, and reformed into what they are today
Not really. The current bankocracy started with the first central bank (the Bank of Amsterdamn – 1609) in Holland (then the Bank of England in 1694).
Set up by the Jewish mafia, largely with the banked loot from the trans-Atlantic slave trade and exploitation (sugar).
But they didn’t dominate the West entirely yet (in the 17th and 18th century). The sovereign Sun King of France (allegedly) declared; L’État, c’est moi (I am the state). But in the 20th and 21th century the West has increasingly – and now entirely – become a bankocracy. The Ashkenazi mafia has become the state.
The Western system has become Ashkenazi mafia monopoly (state) capitalism, just like under Nazi fascism and Trotskyite “communist” crypto-fascism, which were merely subsidiaries, affiliates of the fascist, Ashkenazi white supremacist West.
Thanks Laika for being more specific about the dates (in an earlier post i said wrongly it was around 1640 that the Capitalist economy started)… Whilst it was an entrepreneurial capitalist system up to 1980 (unfair for the working classes but helped grow an innovative middle-class)…this changed under Reagan and Thatcher to the Casino Capitalist world we have now…and THAT is where the main problem lies…in the fact that the younger generations have no experience of the former class struggle nor of the virtues of entrepreneurial capitalism…I see also Peter Drucker as a malevolent influence in this process. He espoused Winner Takes All / Survival of the Fittest / “managers who show empathy towards workers should never be managers”. I see the younger generation as living in a false world where they think the investment of £1 in some lottery can give them a more rapid £1million than having to work hard for it….The focus is on getting quick results with least effort…. few apprentices in the West have long attention spans…The emphasis on education, hard-work and socialistic thinking is why Chinas Buddhist / Confucian / Taoist / Maoist culture will prevail in the longer term….
It seems to me that most of the Jews who dominated much of the Banking in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and London in the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries were Sephardic (Spanish) Jews, and also those who financed the Anglo opium trade from India to China in the 19th and 20eth centuries (the Sassoons of the Shànghǎi and Hòng Kóng Banking corporation were originally of Levantine and Babylonian Jewish extraction — there is still a small syagoge in Shànghâi left by them there — now visited by hundreds at Purim and Passover). .
Thank you very much Ramin. I bought Noami Prins’s book , started reading it, find it technical, but that’s OK. It’s macroeconomy, fine. Still reading.
Surprised with your conclusion concerning Japan but having been there appreciate you broadening my perceptions. And they seem logical. Interesting in fact!
Concerning the new generation -I’m 75 now-, I was not able to appreciate the situation in my immediate area, my kids having gone to private schools and succeeding in life, was not able to see the impact. Probably because in our area of the planet – Quebec – social measures are quite widespread. We were even told that our economy -mainly state-owned entities – is “non-aligned” with that of our southern neighbour, meaning not owned by their elites .
Anyway, it was a pleasure to read you.
There shouldn’t be any doubt that the western world and the rest where the west has sunk in their teeth are controlled by these international bankers. If need be the military (collectors) are sent in to bomb the country, destroying most of their infrastructure and killing a lot of innocents. They secure (steal) the oil and other resources, take their gold (for safekeeping) and set up an international bank. Look at one of Trump’s threats against Iraq: In true gangster fashion, he threatened to cut off access to their money which is held at the Federal Reserve. Countries in Central and South America have desperately tried to free themselves from this banker controlled slavery, at times with some success. But now, sadly, Bolivia is being dragged right back under the IMF, resource theft by their multinational corporations.
Economic war is now a major weapon used in national destruction to subdue the entire planet. The current massive bubble blowing and what will be an epic bubble explosion is not an accident. I do believe it is deliberate. Their only real product of power is debt. They are currently enriching their elite friends and it will be at the expense of everyone else, the slaves.
I will be 66 soon. I was self-employed for 25 years. I did ok but I could never really get ahead. I don’t blame the 35 and under crowd for their dilemma. It was not they who caused the jobs to move away. They didn’t cause the huge university fees, indebting them big time in hopes they might get a job paying more than grocery bagger. But their education from the indoctrination centers has basically been dog training. They can’t think. They don’t know what is true. Greta “how dare you” must be telling the truth. They can’t understand what is coming and who is really behind it. We can try and reach them and be caring and sharing because none of us, regardless of age is getting out of this unscathed.
Well, why did jobs move away? People here wanted $25/hr for screw driver jobs when the capitalists started seeing something. They could pay $2.50/hr in Mexico or less in China. And China showed a fantastic supply chain, did not give a damn about the environment and could produce better quality on time.
If things stayed the way they were, my first pair of Levi’s 505 I bought in 1989 for $35 would be $250 now, pay checks probably a 100% higher and prices of everything through the roof. If you think students are in $100K debt imagine it 4x more.
What keeps it all cheap and low? Cost of fuel. It’s the base for everything. From moving your tomato from California to New Jersey to the plastic bottles we use and throw. America has done the whole world a favor (and more for itself) by keeping costs under control (by keeping oil cheap). Left to the cranky sheikh’s it would be $500/ a barrel now.
Surely you jest.
Oil is so plentiful it should be almost free.
Venezuela and Iran are excluded from our markets for example.
The wars without end are partly to keep prices high not low.
Talk to any economist, they’ll tell you this. They like a moderate inflation 1.5 – 2.0% to keep the economy expanding. The easiest way to control inflation is to control price of oil. It’s under everything. So, yes, they control the price. You say high, I say right priced. Then, you want it free and some will sell it for $500/- barrel. Giving oil away for free will not make markets boom. It needs some other lever, like dotcom, when back in 1999 gas was $0.99/gallon US.
The only reason to target 2% inflation is because that is the rate at which most people are happy to be diddled.
Oh, and it favours speculators over wealth creators.
.99 cent gasoline was during the 70’s, here’s a chart.
opps, this might not work out so well.
Craig Mouldrey – agree with your comment, especially from ‘they can’t think, they don’t know what is true’. That’s one of the reasons I come on sites like here, to learn the truth of how the World is, and to broaden my knowledge.
As always, a fine piece of work with which I agree on the whole.
Only two points there are on which I see things diffferently:
One is your prognosis on Japan’s socialist future. I add that I am a German and I have lived and continue to live in Japan for more than 20 years.
The question of Japan’s future is a complex one, but in my view one factor will be of principal importance in this more than any of the numerous other factors: the Japanese culture.
So far Japanese culture has proven resilient to the incessant attempts of infiltration by the western individualist “anything I like goes” – kind of “weltanschauungs-” invasion, since 1945.
The individual serves society and not the reverse. That does not mean that there are not any places in the social space where there is unchecked individualism, such as youth-subcultures etc. The mainstream stays what it has been in 1945, when the country was in ruins: any reception of Western or foreign customs or ideas takes place in the way is has always done since the first foreigners set foot on Japanese soil in the 17th century: on Japanese terms, and by appropriating it and making it Japanese. The classical Japanese worldview is still very much like in feudal times: everybody serves society, and nobody asks why. There is a selfishlessness that is unquestioned, it is considered Japanese in itself to act in that way, and that makes me have serious doubts that a truly “socialist” Japan might ever come about. When a company messes up big time, a CEO or member of the board of directors is sacrificed and made to apologize to the public in tears. Never mind it’s all pretense, but it is considered necessary to save the company’s reputation. There is a sense of public shame that is not legally actionable in courts, and that is inherently Japanese.
In a nutshell, my point is this: The industrial revolution at the hands of the bourgeousy and with it the empowerment of the bourgeousy never happened in Japan, this only happened in the West, the little people here went straight from being serfs to being workers. And unlike in Russia here the bourgeousy remained loyal to the emperor/ corporate state. Why should there ever be a historical necessity for this society to have its socialist awakening or revolution? If it ever will, I think they will not call it socialism but something else. A sense of duty to society is something very basic to the people here, but it is not connected to a person’s personal wealth. In this very traditional way Japan is already somewhat socialist, and was socialist long before Karl Marx was born. The people here who vote for the communist or socialist parties don’t read “Das Kapital”, they simply believe somebody should look after the interests of the “little man”, and show the big corporations that they cannot do whatever they like. The word “revolution” is for all intents and purposes non-existent in the public political discourse of this country.
I asked my wife, who is Japanese, if she thought Japan might ever become a socialist country, and she did not even consider it. And she votes for the socialist party.
Face it, folks, this country is so much out of the world, it will never do what the rest of the world thinks it should. The West could nuke them and crush them in any way, but they will never make them give up their culture! It is by the way an interesting parallel to your country, and a reason why I am drawn to it, though knowing next to nothing about it.
Another point is your position on the capitalism-socialism dialectic, with which I would like to take issue. Let me be blunt about this: Capitalism and socialism, both leave me equally unimpressed.
One celebrates greed, the other rewards envy, both claim man’s salvation through material things, and both deny the Lord Almighty. Which is the important piece of circumstantial evidence that points at the ideologic provenance of both “-Isms”: the enlightened “humanist” mind of man in the occident, who by using numbers and knowledge from the orient (Persia) managed to devise contraptions that enabled him to harness the energy and other treasures of nature, in order to invent more contraptions to satisfy his by then bulged self-esteem and vanity, and the belief that he doesn’t need The Almighty anymore, because now he has progress as his new little “Ersatz”-god. Enlightened man was quite relieved at his notion that the Almighty was not needed anymore, and religion needed only to be a private conviction without any function in the public order, and I might add that no day passes that I do not wake up in the morning with the wish that one of these days, Western man might finally receive his deserved reality-check concerning the abovementioned relief he might have first felt two hundred years ago!
Which is where Iran comes in. The “Islamic Socialist Republic” is from an orthodox socialist point of view a misnomer: If socialism is per se atheistic it can never as such be islamic or christian or of any other religion, and at the same time remain socialism in the sense that the secular Jew Karl Marx undoubtedly thought.
But leaving that aside, Iran claiming to be based on Islam, and at the same time featuring an economic order that is socialist is to me perfectly plausible.
(I might add by the way, that I have never been to Iran, do not speak the language, and in fact have most of what I do believe to know about the country from reading sources such as the esteemed author himself.)
I am not (consciously) trying to be funny when I nevertheless say that the claim is plausible to me. Economically viewed capitalism and socialism are just systems of economic organization, founded on different ethic principles: Capitalism stresses the right of the individual to live out his “free will” given to him by God Almighty in the way he makes, buys and sells stuff. Socialism, – at the core of it lies the ethic conviction that it cannot be right when one has everything and another one next to nothing. Both are true and valid ethic principles that are only a tiny part of the belief systems of the large religions. If held to be of any exclusive importance, both principles distort what the large religions teach us man is: Man is more than just an owner or one who awaits his handout. That is why only capitalism or only socialism as a system of ethical reference for what man is, is just insufficient.
And both systems of thought believe in man being morally emancipated from The Almighty, and perfectly capable (if not willing ..) to be “moral” or “good”, all by his own power of reasoning or his own nature. Man becomes his own God. This does not make sense!
If Iran says they are based on the Laws of The Almighty of their religion, and that their society and economy is organized in a socialist way, then this shows to me that these guys have understood a lot more than we in the “enlightened” West.
The false belief that man can emancipate himself from The Almighty seems to be a pipe dream that continues to keep up at night our Western 1%ers, and seems to have done so already for a while (maybe about the last 300 odd years).
Because Iran holds the belief that any righteous public order has to be (directly or indirectly) founded on the Laws of The Almighty, they of course had to become the foremost ideological enemy of our Western overlords. Of course it depends on your religion what “righteous” means, but inasmuch as we speak amongst people who “believe” in the widest sense, and not the reverse, as our 1%ers, I think it should become clear now that not only Iran is their enemy, but every single one of us, who believe, is, too.
To conclude, the battle of the Western Elites is of course multi-dimensional: economically is goes against China, militarily against Russia, culturally and in terms of social engineering it goes against all of us, in the West and elsewhere. But finally, ideologically and morally, their biggest enemy is Iran, because they feel that regardless of economic and military might, this is the one country they cannot overcome, even if they bomb it to the stone age, if anybody is still alive, they cannot break their will, as its people know that they are “righteous”, and their Creator is with them.
As far as we are concerned in the West and elsewhere, people who “believe”, and who have realized the state of affairs in our countries, with our elites, we have to be clear on this one thing:
This fight they are picking with Iran, this is a fight against every single one of us!
If our “belief” means anything at all to us, we have to be on their side in this!
Again I commend the author on his work, it is always a pleasure to read his pieces.
Was my first comment. Can’t promise not to do it again. Sorry.
Many good points – thanks for sharing.
Regarding point 1: Mao’s main slogan was “Serve the people”. That seems to be a l of the selflessness you see in Japanese culture, so perhaps Japan is not so impossible to turn socialist than you may think.
Point 2: The idea that socialism must be atheistic is simply one view of socialism – there’s no law that it has to be that way. I talk often about “Iranian Islamic Socialism” and it is phrased that way purposely – it is primarily patriotic, then Islamic, and socialism comes last in order of priority and importance.
I appreciate your kind words about Iran’s determination, but let’s not overrate them. They are surrounded by mountains, deserts and seas, so they have had much geographical luck in historical “resilience”. I think nearly all other countries would show the same resilience, but some are just unfortunately at a historical low ebb, none more so than those which have willing co-opted themselves to benefit from neo-imperialism.
Ramin: Well said on your point 2 response to Gregor. If I may quote Karl Marx; “Communism is the transcendence of human self-estrangement.” This is Hegelian spiritual wisdom, light years ahead of atheist materialism, and any purely economically distributive definition of socialism. The transcendence of self-estrangement refers to what is now referred to as collective self realization. The “self” referring to the internal discovery of one’s innate divinity. That is profoundly spiritual. It is the key to the positive living essence of genuinely socialist culture. The truth is Marx and his view of Socialism was a profoundly spiritual vision that our world is still struggling to grasp. I believe Marx saw it as the fulfillment of all real religious and spiritual aspiration. This atheist quagmire that political commentators see socialism as stuck in just does not do justice to Marx at all.
You say you hate apocalyptic thinking. That is easy to understand and respect. I would argue that if we adequately understand what Marx really meant by the collective transcendence of self estrangement we would have a serviceable language with which to deal with the real apocalypse that we can see opening before us. Essentially – to successfully deal with the 2020’s we need to begin to share an understanding of Marx’s insight here and where this great dialectic is taking the world. I honor Iranian Shia socialism as a good beginning, from within the axial religions.
lol. i am young people below 35. i cant really understand what you are sayin really. it is so much easier to read your iran and china series that this economic stuff. i skip here and there.
ramin, is there a market that uses dinar dirham and rural part of iran? or just muslim neighbours who trade with each other not necessarily a market
“Target audience” of older people didn’t mean I think no young people are reading this!
If you are referring to the crypto currency – Iran is working on a national crypto. I am practically certain they will be the first major nation to implement one – they have the need and, most importantly, the bureaucratic unity to get it implemented.
If you are referring to the gold dinar a la Qadaffi – Iran talks about it a lot as an alternative. They were the first to use oil barter on a mass scale, and other Muslim nations are getting into the idea of bartering in gold. Nobody has really taken the next step to make it widespread.
Certainly, gold is used in Iranian markets all over – have gold, will travel.
Who Was Alfred Herrhausen in 1989?
Herrhausen’s campaign for third world debt relief
Alfred Herrhausen – A Leader ahead of his time
Germany´s Most Powerful Manager Broke Taboos
Helga LaRouche: Herrhausen Solution for Deutschebank to Stop War
Video with transcript
Link to Helga Zepp-LaRouche
I hope the letters turn red this time
In August 2015, Zepp-LaRouche wrote an article describing climate change as
a “Satanic swindle”. In her opinion, it “supplies the argumentation to establish a
global eco-dictatorship whose results, and whose declared intention is to elimi-
nate six billion human beings”. Zepp-LaRouche argued that preparations are
under-way for the establishment of “a fascist world government which would ex-
ceed Hitler’s most audacious dreams”. Zepp-LaRouche suggested the origin
of the “swindle” is the British monarchy.
My findings too. Who would have thought the little old lady was the devil.
China isn’t going to forget the Nanjing massacre or Unit 731 anytime soon. Furthermore, every time a Japanese leader makes offerings to the Yasukuni Shrine, another decade or more is added to the hatred that the East Asian nations feel for the brazenly unrepentant Japanese. Even in earlier times the Japanese were despised by the Chinese as pirates and mercenaries. So the author’s suggested alliance between these two countries just isn’t realistic.
Still, there is in China a certai lurking (albeit grudjing) admiration for the Japanese. They have a saying: “One Japanese a buffon — four Japanese a dragon” (Yīge Rìbĕn-rén wéi chóng sìge Rìbĕn-rén chéng lóng) Thus expressing their admiration for the Japanese peoples’ stunning ability to fast coöperate when it really matters.
Once observed a drunk fall onto the track at a Tôkyô subway station where there comes a new train every 90 second during rush hours. At once and without any premeditation, four suit-wearing ‘sarariman’ (office employees) jumped down from the platform, picked him up and onto the platform. Whereopon they parted separately onto the carridges of the next trains. Hove’s that for social spirit and ‘Civilcourage’?!
‘China may historically be rather culturally isolationist (within the hugely diverse “continent” which China truly is)’
China is actually remarkably uniform, and it certainly isn’t continent sized. It’s current borders include four formerly independent nations, making it roughly three times larger than The Middle Kingdom.
The 15/18 provinces formed a uniquely stable unit (the immortal state), whereas the current entity is inherently unstable. Imperial China could have invaded and absorbed neighbouring countries many times in history but did not do so because they were aware of this risk, and they preferred stability.
The PRC thinks like expansionist Western nations in this regard and they believe that ethnic cleansing and oppression will somehow carry the day. The Mandate of Heaven does not of course lie with those soaked in the blood of the oppressed, so it will most likely pass to India.
“China is actually remarkably uniform, and it certainly isn’t continent sized. ”
China is larger than Australia and – what – 5% smaller than Europe? It has double the population of Europe.
Continents are an arbitrary cultural construction, not based on science.
Other than that – everything else you said about China was also off the mark, Hadjuk.
China is both uniform and varying, both monlith and yīn-yáng. This goes for the center of the ‘central country’ (Zhōnguó-de guózhōng) just as well as for the five autonomous areas that surround the central provinces. In Bĕijing during the Cultural Revolution (La revo-cul dans La Chine pop) the central institute for Marxist research of the Academy of Science (Academia Sinica) was situated between a mosque and a small Catholic cathedral that were both still operating religious services. When they instituted strict population control and the one child policy, minorities were excepted and in some cases quadrupled their population.
Here in Oslo, even the M-L Máoists were baffled by the real china — and forbade their cadres and members to study Chines at the U. of Oslo.
Hard to see a single true point in Mz/Mr. Hadjik’s remarks — or is he ‘The Brave Sinologist Schweik’ with Check sense of braveness about truth and an inverse humour?
China is both uniform and also Yīn & Yáng. Been there for eight years over a long time startig in 1972 and up intil 2008.
Here is the totally amoral brain that controls the world:
Here is the ultimate driver:
All else is unpredictable details in a hyper-complex nonlinear system of geographic + technological + genetic + cultural factors. For the most part, all we can do is report the weather, not predict it, and even our reporting falls far short of a full account. So, can we have a sort of Heisenberg uncertainty principle effect…By our reporting, can we also affect the trajectory? Yes, and so…May The Saker and writers like Ramin Mazaheri keep up the great work!
I think we’ll know the American dominance is over when they lose their hold on Latin America. Nowhere else is the struggle so nakedly defined between the people and the US and their local compradors; nowhere else are those struggling so aware of just who and what they’re up against.
The US are keeping the lid on down there by the skin of their teeth–a coup here, sanctions there, lots of propaganda everywhere, stacks of military aid (sometimes dressed up as “war on drugs” aid), CIA chicanery often dressed up as “democracy promotion”. When their sanctions are bypassed and their skulduggery can’t control the Latin media and they can’t afford the military aid, when the “pink tide” reasserts itself doubly and they all tell the IMF and the World Bank to get stuffed, that’ll be it.
Hello Mr Ramin,
Thank you for all these excellent writings. My brain will explode soon:) I ordered your book I’ll Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China from Amazon(sorry:( ) today. As being an Iranian living past 35 years of my life in Sweden and working alot, lately I have had much more time for reading than I had before. I wonder if you can recommend some good source(specially your own) about situation between Iran & US, and future election in both country? What happens if Trump get reelected? war? even more sanctions? Iran get hard liners elected which seems to be the case. How is Israel involved in the big picture?
Thank you very much
I think the term capitalism is used too loosely. For example there is laissez-faire capitalism, fascist capitalism (modern feudalism), state capitalism (which is communism) and mixed capitalism. Capital is just stuff that somebody somewhere owns that somebody somewhere uses to live their life. Capitalism isn’t a monolithic word with a monolithic meaning; if a communist owns his underpants he’s a degree of capitalist, mostly a state capitalist victim, but to some minor degree also a laissez-faire capitalist.