November 11, 2012

Missions of the 21st century

Posted in Sunday Business Post · 247 comments ·

We all know that 2016 will be an auspicious date for Ireland. But it will also be an important date for the world. Yesterday, the OECD announced that the Chinese economy is set to overtake the US by 2016. Indeed, by the end of this year, China will have overtaken the eurozone economy.

Bearing this in mind, arguably the more significant power struggle was not the one between Obama and Romney last week, but the handover of power – the coronation, if you will – taking place this weekend in China. In relative terms, even though the US is recovering from the disaster of the Bush/Greenspan years, and despite the fact that Obama won the election because of – not in spite of – the economy, the big issue is now managing the relative decline of the US in tandem with the relative ascendance of China and – not too far behind – India.

Last week, the OECD produced some interesting long-range forecasts that are worth highlighting since, although it’s easy to get bogged down in the ground war of Europe, bank debt, the budget and the immediate next move in the economy, taking a bit of altitude is always necessary. Have a look at the charts.

Last year, the US accounted for 23 per cent of the world’s GDP while the euro area accounted for 17 per cent. China also accounted for 17 per cent. India, with its billion-plus population, was at a mere 7 per cent. However, by 2060, China will achieve 28 per cent of total world GDP while India will account for 18 per cent. In direct contrast, the influence, power and weight of the US and Europe will have progressively diminished. By the time my own children are moving towards pensionable age, the US – formerly the world’s leader, don’t forget – will account for a modest 17 per cent of the world’s economy. Europe, once the master of all she surveyed, will slip to a practically irrelevant 9 per cent of total world income.

These are enormous changes. While not unprecedented (all great empires and powers tend to peak, overreach and fall back in the great Darwinian game of global economic history), these trajectories are significant and quite immediate. By this I mean that, though 2060 seems like a long way away, it is really only 48 years. Perhaps you remember 1965, 1966 or 1967? If you do, it mightn’t seem so long ago either; it was after JFK was assassinated and before the first man on the moon: the era of Mohammed Ali and Martin Luther King; the years of Revolver and Sergeant Pepper; and the glory days of Matt Busby, George Best and, of course, Celtic FC.

Back then, America was the main player and, despite everything, it’s still top dog today. Imagine the coming change: seeing American power diminish to such an extent that it will be smaller than India is today
on the world stage.

If we stick with the economics, we see that three factors affect the long-term growth rate of any economy. The first is the most significant. It has been said that “demography is destiny” and this is true. The countries with the highest population growth tend to dominate in the long run because they have enough people to work and to consume the fruits of their labour. The other factor affecting demography is the education level of those people. The better educated and better trained the population, the more productive they’re likely to be.

The second major factor determining the growth rate of any country is technology or capital. The more capital-intensive the country, the more productive and richer it will be. Look at the enormous productivity of Ireland’s multinational sector. This output per employee has driven the phenomenal capital intensity of the manufacturing bases. We see it all over the world: when you have smart people and lots of capital, growth rates go through the roof.

The final piece of economic alchemy is what economists call total factor productivity. This is how productive the country is when you combine the people and the capital. This is the great chemistry of growth economics; above all, this figure tells you if the economy is doing the right things. It is quite distinctive from the growth rate.

We know in Ireland that, if you throw enough money at an economy, it is easy to get growth rates that seem marvellous but they have as much durability as a blazing, open fire. It’s fired up by reams of paper, which looks great, but gives off no heat and will ultimately burn itself out.

Famously, in the mid-1990s, Paul Krugman spotted something odd about the Asian miracle: there wasn’t one. He noticed total factor productivity in Asia was actually falling. Therefore, the vaunted growth rates were fuelled either by too many people being crammed into the economy, or by too much cash being smart.

But neither the people nor the deployed capital was productive, so he said the boom in the Asian Tigers would come to a sudden stop – which it did.

Getting the total factor productivity usually depends on having the right institutions, laws, rules and infrastructure – which allow people and capital to work together seamlessly. This is the key to why the northern European countries have been able to continue paying themselves well and still keep ahead of the rest: they are well organised and have strong institutions, backed by a strong commercial culture.

As the rest of the world develops, they will need these strong institutions; they will need to import western technology and copy it. The education of their people will be essential. And this is where our
opportunity lies.

Last week at, two eminent Indian economists and financial market players – PK Basu and Vikas Nath – shared stories about being taught by Irish priests in India in the 1970s. They enthused about how many prominent Indians were bonded by having been educated by Irish orders and how this is a huge unifying brand that Ireland has in the sub-continent. Looking ahead, they urged Ireland to reach out to the children of similar Indians, build on a strong teaching brand and they insisted that, if we opened up our education system to the children of the emerging Indian middle-class, we would have a growth industry to beat any other.

They argued that we could be the host nation for an education revolution that would see thousands of rich Indians come here to learn. They believed, based on their own experiences, that this would be pushing an open door – to another English-speaking country which they had a positive collective impression of, and relationship with: Ireland. Years ago, I spoke of plugging into our diaspora (and it’s nice to see it being acted on, finally). I spoke about leveraging from our history and making the most of our global footprint.

Many assumed this was just talking about reconnecting with the ethnic Irish abroad and, granted, it was the main message. But the Irish experience abroad, the Irish voice – the Irish echo – is far more than the genetically Irish. It lives on as much in the heads and hearts of Hindu Indians as it does in those of Harlem Catholics – and it can be tapped. Look again at the world in 2060 and our place in it. It could well be an evergreen harvest that might well be ‘gathered’, year in, year out.

  1. Dorothy Jones

    Actor Gabriel Byrne dissed the idea of ‘plugging into the diaspora’. It did’t prevent him from claiming 16k€ in expenses in 2011 while acting as ‘honorary cultural ambassador’ whatever the f*** that is. Expenses of almost 4k€ in hotels Shelbourne and Westbury. Niamh/Connolly/Nicola Cooke P3 today’s Sunday Business Post.

  2. imithe

    Wow, looking at the OECD predictions, the Czech Republic has got a big future!

  3. Philip

    When I see chinese and indian equivalents (not copies) of boeing, coca cola and ibm I regard these numbers as veritable rubbish. Yes, the GDP numbers may be this large, but who’ll all this work be for? I suspect not the natives. Remember, the US and other owner countries exported their national income. Its going back now. Western institutions took 2 centuries to evolve. Why is it assumed the asians can do similar in a fraction of that time?

    Robots are getting good now. Do not need cheap labour anymore. Now what? And the childish naive ans that you need people to program them no longer holds. And this is today! 40 yrs from now all bets are off.

    This is a case of the OECD looking at the world like an uncontrolled suburban sprawl. They are like NAMA trying to convince investors whre next to

  4. Philip

    Got chopped. The OECD are like NAMA trying to convince the mext bunch of investors where to take a punt. And I suspect the panic of same old same old must be knocking where u see more and more GDP taken up by interest payments. I wonder what that fraction is? 10 or 20 or 30 or 40%?

    The growth dog simply does not hunt.

  5. Philip

    NAMA remark needs explaining. Badically they are trying to keep developers doing what they are doing to try and pay off the huge debts eventually by ringfencing developers interests to ringfence NAMA interests. Organisations like OECD are merely a pawn in a global game doing the same thing. Nighty night :-)

  6. bonbon

    Some would like to base economics and Ireland’s future on “alchemy” referred to in the lead. There is quite a lot of that going around here, which is really Mandeville’s “unknowable processes” “spontaneously emerging” from statistics or gold. His alchemy turns up anywhere the British economics schools have a (sleight of) hand.

    What is missing, and that is endemic today, is any trace of a scientific principle in the entire discussion. Where does growth comes from, what exactly is growth. How to measure it? How to encourage it? What is suppressing it?

    “Mission of the 21st Century”? Using GDP figures to predict a mission? The belief that statistics are a natural physical principle is the core problem.

    Mission number 1 ) break up the banks, hive off the investment sector with its synthetic debts
    2) re-instate national banking everywhere, especially the USA
    3) draw up plans for huge required projects to prepare a new economic platform, such as NAWAPA XXI, Eurasian Landbridge, Messina Straits …, 6000GW of power.

    That is the 3-part mission, and it certainly does not ooze from OECD statistics, nor is it alchemy – no magic involved. The scientific principles of relative potential population density, a personal principle if there ever was one, and stepwise energy density improvements in the productive powers of labor can be known but never found in the “numbers”. Our survival as a species is dependent on grasping these principles.

  7. Philip

    Machine translator speaks Chinese in your own voice

    Who will be influencing who?

    Tower of babel collapses Then what?

    • whatamess

      it was only a matter of time ,but still very very cool !

      “It’ll have language teachers the world over ripping up their vocab books: near-real-time speech conversion from one language to another has just become a reality.”

    • bonbon

      Having watched HAL 9000 in various languages (not Chinese), I note they all managed to convey the dead machine tone (maybe as Clarke intended). Even when HAL 9000 sung Daisy.

      So what will be influencing whom, a machine?

      For sure a Machine Translator Rap band will sound in a earphone near you anytime soon.

  8. Adam Byrne


  9. Adelaide

    For a comprehensive rubbishing of the use of GDP statistics to say anything meaningful of the real world check out

    Documentary :”Who’s Counting? Marilyn Waring on Sex Lies and Global Economics”

    nb: scroll half-way down the page. The doc has a female-centic analysis with the engaging Marilyn Waring.

  10. Eireannach

    The OECD’s predictions don’t factor in Peak Oil. The rise of India and China will hit the brick wall of dwindling oil supplies. To say nothing of critically depleted aquafers under Uttar Pradesh, diminishing fresh water supplies in Arizona and Nevada and all over China, collapsing grain harvests, shortages of rare earth metals, shortages of and hugely expensive nitrogen fertilisers and oil-based pesticides and herbicides.

    The future will be very dystopian. That said, we should reach out to India alright. I love India and Indians, they will be our allies in Asia, or that I’ve no doubt.

    • Eireannach

      I meant ‘of that I’ve no doubt’ :)

    • bonbon

      Whether or not “factoring” in more stats, the entire forecasting mumbojumbo, including the just posted “vision” betrays an utter incompetence beyond belief just when we need economics most. But that is the way history works.

      Animals die waiting for water or oil. Real humans make water, energy as needed, move rivers, recover runoff, and China, USA, Russia knows this. Italy has the Transaqua plan for the Chad in Africa. We have the Shannon Deep Harbor for the Arctic Frontier opening up now. If they are not in some popular view from foggy bottom, well too bad.

      • transitionman

        “Real humans make water, energy as needed”
        Scotty beam bonbon back to the ship

        • bonbon

          There are some greenies that think water simply flows to their cup of coffee straight from the clouds in the blue yonder.

          Galway learnt a little lesson about what greenies believe when the water became a public health hazard in the Tiger epoch. Of course with greenies in power one can die of too much water.

          Now back to the real economy. We harness the Shannon, and pump water with power – get it? Even Guiness pumps stout, it does not just flow from the Liffey (God forbid).

          Now for adults only, let’s look at NAWAPA XXI the greatest Water and Power Alliance ever planned. The 3 Gorges, while dauntingly and stunningly effective, is a stepping stone to this. Take the tour if you dare (the maps and flyovers are stunning) :

    • Deco

      Fair point. China is building renewable power and nuclear power installations – plus an intense network of electric trains to deal with this.

      The West is throwing money at rich gamblers, and watching reality TV shows/soap operas/sports channel.

      Behaviour breeds results.

  11. Philip

    You know, when economists crowd around and surmise the future via the rear view mirror of recent events (last 20 years or so) and then make the cognitive jump to align said results with data several decades before that, you know we are not plugged in.

    Vikas Nath pointed to a very interesting phenomenon in Africa – their use of cheap mobile telephony (pre-smart phone) to deploy very innovative economic solutions. I know many like to pooh pooh Africa (the so-called 3rd world’s 3rd world) as a non-player, but the level of creativity and innovation out of practically nothing needs to be witnessed. I believe there is deep innovation happening here and it is born out of strife and hunger and the need to survive and is a direct result of what happens when people start to get educated in hard circumstances.

    Here is my take for the next 30 years or so…Africa could be a significant leader in low energy hi efficiency solutions that will make today’s high energy lo efficiency systems look like something from the 19th century. Solutions to what? Well, no one foresaw the scheduling/ syncing capability of the mobile phone for day to day business and daily life. And in a world where climate change is a real threat, Africa may lead the way to a hi-capability low impact culture. We could be entering the age of light touch – hi density hi population which will be as unnoticeable as the rest of nature on this planet.

    • bonbon

      What is innovative for Africa is water, power, transport. China fully understands that. The sickening insult to propose mobile phones to the residents of 90% of that continent is just a typical european colonial backwardness.

      The Congo must be moved, 10% of its water rerouted to the Chad region. The Sud Canal, begun before the “west” started breaking up Sudan (the Ruby of the Crown remember), must be completed to drain the swamp for agriculture.
      Essential rail networks long delayed by a murderous European policy must be built. Modern machinery for advanced agriculture is a hige marked for the tanking “sports” auto firms.

      Physical Economy stupid! To attempt a dot-com repeat failure is incredibly silly, but typical of the crowd now frantically flailing with wild-eyed shakes at the collapsing Tower of Babel.

      • Tony Brogan

        The point is that the phones already exist and are owned and disbursed according to two Indian gentlemen who last time I looked had nothing to do with a typical european colonial.

        In fact the colonialism I see is bon bon LaRouche going in with a mega project and declaring, “this is good for you”

        • bonbon

          Water , power, transport are good for you. Colonialism denied all this to Africa. To offer trinkets is the same insult as the legendary glass beads. Ireland only improved after colonialism.

          Yet all in Europe are not crazy all of the time, some are all of the time. The Marshall Plan for the Med and North Africa, the Transaqua project for the Congo/Chad, and that is just the beginning, are all on the table. China thinks very similarly. Mega problems in the physical economy will use mega programs on a scale no private banker can even dream of. Hey this is the 21st Century, not some golden past.

  12. At last David is proposing solutions. Let us all start looking for Solutions not problems. We don’t need growth anymore but more efficiency. Yes get inspiration from the Africans, Capitalise on our natural resources and human Resources.The present generation has a new world to conquer before they retire in 2060

    • bonbon

      Africa an economic inspiration? I have now heard either the Crown talking, or an unfortunate bewildered glass-bead bedazzled native.

      By any physical economic measure Africa is being put through a genocidal program – Sir Henry Kissinger’s NSSM 200 (google it) documents the precise calculated program long in service of the British Empire.

      To attempt to tell us Irish to model on this? We had that program in 1846 already!

  13. Adam Byrne

    “despite the fact that Obama won the election because of — not in spite of — the economy”

    Did you reverse ‘because of’ and ‘in spite of’ here David, or that’s the way you meant it?

    • dwalsh

      I second that query.

    • Philip

      Very interesting way of putting it… exactly what economy are we talking about?

      Maybe we should be not be asking ourselves, which economies will grow the biggest but more more importantly, which are most likely to survive the coming natural disasters… So far Nature seems to be dictating terms for the future. China and India would do well to learn from the US’s woes than ape them.

      • bonbon

        Storm and tides are natural – the disaster was man made, the refusal to stop the waters as Bloomberg NY Mayor, refused to build in 2009 for a mere $6.1 bn.

        Holland knows a thing or two and laughs at the insane “natural disaster” financiers. St. Petersburg just finished surge barriers.

        Or course the ultimate natural disaster, the inevitable Nova of our star should change people’s view of the sanctity of disasters. Al Gore wants to make the planet sustainable for devouring by a Nova. A bit addled shall we say.

        • Philip

          More rubbish to promote nonsensical 1950s re terraforming in Larouches image. What you are witnessing is Nature’s energy budget vs Mans (even if we had commodity fusion today) – the ratio is still Millions to 1. Ignore nature and it’ll bury, drown, suffocate, starve or poison you.

          This storm was small but unprecedented in terms of it’s direction and location. Building and designs are based on looking at weather events based on 50-100 years of information and you design by a multiple to make good. That infrastructure was very good for the most part and that was a rich part of the country.

          Dutch are very nervous. They are all too aware that the shifts are very sudden and recent.

          The point of my comment is that the US’s ability to repair itself seems defunct and becoming more so – all because there is no sense of social community. Something that socialist oriented countries seem to address better. It is not about digging holes and pouring mountains of concrete. It is about being intelligent.

          • bonbon

            Intelligent people have been simply human – no animal moves rivers, erects barriers, builds canals, moves energy over cables. No animal ever used fire – it is the most distinguishing aspect of being human. Fire of all types with sudden jumps in energy density – something only the mind can fathom.

            To attempt a “social community” denying these essential human characteristics is – well you can guess.

            Looking at all collapsed civilization records known from this human POV, one can see the reason the relative potential population density suddenly dropped. A cultural regression is always to be found. Anthro’s and Archaeo’s like to avoid this piercingly poignant issue (exactly this is underway right this very moment) and look for war (which does abound). But the cause of the war is that exact issue!

        • bonbon

          My point is made and confirmed. “Unprecedented” was the storm not. Sane engineering firms proposed the barriers, refused by BLOOMBERG! That is the cause of the disaster.

          Sure some natural threats do exist, and during the Election we had a near miss by a 1km rock! Enough to wipe out most civilization. NASA’s NEARA program maps these and Putin has proposed the SDE – Strategic Defense of the Earth to cope. Exactly the same method as SDI of 1983. The economic platform jump that this means is apparent to anyone not fascinated by trinkets. An early warning system on Mars would be a starter.

  14. Tony Brogan

    Subscribe 2

  15. Pat Flannery

    Just a word in defence of the much-maligned Euro project: it was the lack of a single currency that destroyed the Asian Tigers.

    The London and Wall Street currency speculators picked them off one at a time which ended in a general rush for the door. Capital flew out of Asia overnight resulting in the crash of the Seven Tiger economies.

    It was that lesson that inspired the Europeans to craft a single currency. Both London and Wall Street have never forgiven them and are now working might and main to “do an Asia” on the Europeans.

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  17. bonbon

    A warning signal from the bbc :

    Some Brits beginning to get very nervous about the way things are developing — Unemployment was 30% in Germany when Hitler took power, it is 25.1% and rising in Greece” (Paul Mason Economics editor, BBC Newsnight programme) [Interestingly and probably not unrelated, the Newsnight programme and the BBC in general is under massive attack in the UK at present]. In an economic crisis millions of people suddenly decided to turn to an unconventional leader they thought had “charisma” because he connected with their fears, hopes and latent desire to blame others for their predicament. And the end result was disastrous for tens of millions of people.

    It’s bleakly ironic that German Chancellor Angela Merkel was greeted in Athens recently with swastika banners carried by angry Greeks protesting at what they see as German interference in their country.

    Ironic because it is in Greece itself — amid terrible economic crisis — that we see the sudden rise of a political movement like the Golden Dawn that glories in its intolerance and desire to persecute minorities. And it is led by a man who has claimed there were no gas chambers in Auschwitz. Can there be a bigger warning than that?

    Back at the Good Room :
    “I am impressed by Greece’s recent performance Greece is on track to meet its commitments step by step,” the chairman of euro zone finance ministers, Jean-Claude Juncker, told reporters on arrival for the meeting which included Noonan at Brussels, where further funds were stopped.

  18. ian22

    david,im all for the idea of allowing 000s of wealthy indians to be educated here but its a morally bankrupt long as the caste system exists in india then we should not prop it up by further enhancing their dominance over lower caste indians.its a bit like the shannon stop overs by american army troop planes.sure bertie said we were against the war in iraq but we stil needed the dollars and the support of the american tech companies…oh the hypocricy of it all.

    • Adam Byrne

      Wait for the perfect world to evolve then ian22 and then we can help people. You’ll be waiting a million years mate.

      Part of breaking down the caste system (or any morally corrupt system) is letting people travel, giving them opportunities to get educated and work in other countries etc. and then make a difference if/when they go back to India (or wherever) to try to change how things are, but should not be.

      • bonbon

        The essential part is to deal with the 700 million in rural poverty with power, water, transport. Those have no chance to “skip off to Kilkenomics”.

        • Adam Byrne

          Your first sentence is true Mr. bonbon.

          As for your second, we all have to get on with our lives and Kilkenomics happens to be my biggest expenditure of the year and worth every penny. No trinkets for me.

  19. Age of Aquarius in Allahabad

    Galbraith in his grey years realised the finity of the Nomics of Eco . An Echo . Some much he said that happened and how it happened and will happen and sometimes did’nt happen but he thought should have happened and could not understand why it did not happen when it should .When it Should! Thats right .But it did’nt.

    The Why of it all defied him and the repetition anoyed him he finally resorted to a ‘higher level’. Thus Allahabad was born and to India his great thoughts arrived .To the cradle of The Age of Aquarius ‘ where millions and millions arrived a few years ago to welcome the dawn of this new Era .

    Galbraith realised that it was in Allahabad that the drops of water fell from the pichet carried by the lady and touched the grounds that have since become sacred and in good time as in the prophesy of the OECD the Mighty Avator will Rise .

    Now one of the Prophets of Galbraith a deciple known as David in the old lands of Eeerland , The Lands in the West where he resided in Knowth an ancient buriel grounds rose and called his brethern ‘to listen ‘ and follow his stars and read the language of the universe for herein lies the New Light .

    And some did and were Saved .

  20. Moon Wobble

    Sunday was the beginning of the last moon wobble this year and already Venice has flooded .This wobble will peak on the 18th but will not finish until 25th .However scattered energy will prevail until the full moon 28th .

    So belt up and experience the veils of Sandy pass over us in these few days .

    • Philip

      As a matter of interest, when’s Obama and the lads makibg up their minds about that US Fiscal Cliff they all are yammering about. Now there’s a wobble to watch.

  21. cooldude

    I’m not too sure that David’s premise of strong institutions being the main reason Northern Europe is doing relatively well. Firstly Northern Europe is slipping back into recession and secondly most of it’s financial institutions are insolvent and are only avoiding bankruptcy by exchanging dodgy securities at full value with the ECB for cash. The ECB is becoming the bad bank for these “strong institutions” and without it they would be bankrupt. Most of them are operating on leverage levels of over 25-1 so it is no surprise that these reckless institutions are in trouble.
    The Indians would be far better off educating themselves as all they will learn over here is how to get failed reckless financial institutions to be bailed out by a government at the tax payer’s expense. I’m sure they can surely come up with a better system themselves if left to their own devices.

  22. Adam Byrne

    Fabulous idea regarding the Indians David, absolutely fabulous. I hope it happens.

  23. Tony Brogan

    “But neither the people nor the deployed capital was productive, so he said the boom in the Asian Tigers would come to a sudden stop — which it did”

    As is the norm , David, a credit debt based boom fuel by the cheap and easy credit resulted in the inevitable bust.

    It is a simple lesson to learn by just examining the previous happenings all of which became a bust or worse still resulted in a destroyed economy and a broken social order.

  24. It’s interesting you mention well educated people paying for education but that is fine if you have customers who can afford and are willing to pay a grand or two for a learning experience with concrete returns. You imagine a world where rich people are jetting around the globe to be educated but I see a market of millions who can’t afford an education far less have funds to visit Ireland

    You could charge €100 for a dvd and sell a few or charge €5 and shift millions.

    Self education is a natural human instinct and there is an undying demand for quality educational resources, tools and articulate teachers who put financial gain low down on their of priorities and ambitions. I read poor tutorials and articles every day that are either wrong. incomplete or are written in poor english. People will pay for quality so it is a matter of seeing how you can let them have your product for the right price

    Instead of dumping old computers we could be starting community based educational initiatives here in Ireland. I know men in their 40s and 50s who have never even used a computer and who are afraid to start now. Some of them have low educational achievements and are not to be faulted for it but they would find a whole new world out there if only they learned to use a computer. It could even be life changing for them

    If we adjusted our attitudes towards consumption and waste, refurbished computers can be made servicable for donkeys years with free software. Some communities already have mens sheds and these could be used for education. It would breathe life into our dying villages and communities and we could send spare computers off to communities in poorer countries and maybe form a world wide community. People love to communicate and they love to talk to people from other cultures who share their interests. I know this from my experience of being a user of free software and the culture behind it. It taught me more than four years in college did

    Maybe your Indian friends could take charge of the computers back home and make sure they reach schools in poor cummunities. As for making money that would take care of itself by people back home who can afford to pay Irish prices for one to one education or attending talks. Once it took off there would be money coming in from dvd sales and merchandise such tshirts and stickers for example

    Our computers could come with the slogan ‘Powered by Erin Linux’. Or even Paddy Linux. A colourful Che Guevara style likeness of Luke Kelly could be the logo

    As for the technical ‘problems’ there would be none because you would take an existing proven workhorse like Mint and rebrand it. Simple. Tips and advice on Mint forums would work with Paddy Linux

    I worked in my local IT where there were cupboards full of unused gear. They write them off the asset register as they depreciate towards zero value. It all depends on how you define value because where there is muck there is brass

    ‘Sounds a bit too much like bleedin socialism if you arsk me’

  25. strathspey

    Tomorrow’s world
    Dr Michio Kaku is a well-known futurist and Professor of Theoretical Physics in the City College of New York. He has written several books about physics and has two NY Times best sellers: Physics of the Impossible (2008) and Physics of the Future (2011). Here are some of his thoughts and predictions.
    Every 18 months, computer power doubles (Moore’s Law), so in eight years, a microchip will cost only a penny. Instead of one chip inside a desktop, we will all have millions of chips in cars, appliances and clothes. By 2020, the word ‘computer’ will have vanished from the English language — everything will be ‘smart’.
    In Kaku’s latest book, ‘Physics of the Future’ he predicts driverless cars by 2020 and synthetic organs by 2030. DNA chips inside toilets will sample blood and urine and report cancer, maybe 10 years before a tumour forms.
    Artificially intelligent doctors will appear on the wall when needed. The body will be scanned with a handheld MRI machine, which will analyse the results to provide a diagnosis that is 99% accurate.
    In this augmented reality, ‘blink and go online’ will change everything. Students will look up the answers to tests while taking them. Actors will read from their scripts while performing onstage. Foreigners will translate their conversations instantly. And speech-makers will never need tele-prompters again.
    These gadgets seem decades away, but Kaku insists that they are coming very, very fast. The military already has a prototype of the contact lens called ‘Land Warrior’, a helmet with an eyepiece that allows the wearer to see the entire battlefield — friendly forces, enemy forces, artillery, aircraft, everything, just by flicking it down right over the eyes.
    Propelled by advances in nanotechnology, artificial intelligence and biotech, the world will become a fully globalised civilisation by 2100. Kaku predicts that the planetary language will be English, and the Internet will be the planetary telephone system. The European Union and big trading blocs will be the planetary economy. The Olympics will be the planetary sports. And there will be planetary youth culture like rock ‘n roll and rap.

    • bonbon

      What’s he smokin`? This is just the same old epoch ramblings all over again.

      Look what Obamacare is doing to medical research, look what biofuel quota’s are doing to the food supply. This guy is in a rubber room, not even the good room.

      It seems alchemy and drugs have replaced scientific economics for all of the people some of the time and some people all of the time.

    • Adam Byrne

      I’ve read a few of his books at met him once in Newark airport. David told me he interviewed him years ago too when I was not in Ireland and could not see the shows.

      If you are into this sort of stuff you might want to check out ‘The Singularity is Near’ by Raymond Kurzweil.

      Mr. bonbon, you really are daft as a brush. This is the other side of the coin to your precious NAWAPA project (a project which I do not disagree with in principle). You can’t pick and choose progress though Mr. bonbon.

      Mr. bonbon, you are the one that is smoking something, Despite occasional flashes of lucidity, most of your opinions and posts are all over the shop. You should calm down a bit and let your head do the talking instead of your mouth. You’ll wear out my delete button too. All the best though. I hope you eventually mature and form your own valid opinions.

      • Adam Byrne

        ‘and’ met him once…

      • bonbon

        Yet we have a measure of economic value, and this is what this excerpt portrays itself to be about. It should be clear the bubbles had no economic value, but can you show why? It is a shattering experience to really see how utterly worthless such fantasies are, not just by listing the burst bubbles, but to see why. Is it not clear the Tiger ear for such ramblings is still desperately listening to conch shells? The immediate lurch, grasping for some semblance of a working dot-com? Either the writer is smoking or at the same old game.

        2 physical economic principles actually move the economy – relative potential population density and the rate of increase of productive power of labor. Failure or sheer suicidal neglect of at least these 2 principles has brought the transatlantic region to its knees. That is the way the world actually works. Every economic story must be checked. We are beyond entertainment here.

        Only the mind can grasp these principles, the paw can grasp a trinket. This is vitally crucially important.

        • Tony Brogan

          The bubbles were caused by excess credit. Money pumped into the economy by lending every cent.
          By definition. All credit induced booms will end and have in the past all ended in a bust. Name one that has not.

          Physical economic principles are simply to save cash. Investigate the options, invest cash into acquiring capital.
          Capital plant ,equipment and educated workforce equal a sound business proposition as long as the economic signals are from a sound economy.

          Economic principles are violated when any interference takes place but particularly when the money supply is increased. The distortions cause mal investment in capital that is misplaced and businesses fail.

          We have been brought to our knees by huge amounts of debt based credit added to the money supply. This additional money gives the illusion of increased economic activity accross a broad spectrum and so all businesses expand operations at the same time. Hense the boom ans not orderly growth and the bust as all go broke together.
          Get rid of the central banks, etc, etc, and we can return to sound sensible money and sound economic principles.

        • bonbon

          Physical economic principles have nothing to do with cash – that’s monetarism. Increasing the productive power of labor with energy intensity is a principle. The relative potential population density of an economic platform is another. Economics does not spring from money.

          One cannot actually buy an economy.

      • bonbon

        Let me add another note why I get so fuming mad when I hear these headless predictions – from experience in research where great ideas circulate which suddenly hit a brick wall – the real economy outside the cosy Rooms. The incredible ignorance of very well educated hopeful engineers and scientists when it comes to the economy must be addressed – it is accepted in the Rooms that scientific principles reign and outside only alchemy, opinion, party politics. Stunningly dumb. That is why the economy is a mess. Not only are elected politicians in the Good Room!

      • bonbon

        Just try running those fantasies by an experienced engineer running research programs. I have seen this at work. What it usually boils down to is “I want Mama to give me toys!”. Sending these guys out to find funding – locked bank doors, is a real grow-up experience.

        Look at the EU failed budget – some attempted to drop research from 6% to 2% ! And someone wants toys! Look at what Obama did to NASA, Medicare. Guess how medical firms react!

        And economic platform like JFK’s intervention is what actually encourages research. That’s Hamiltonian banking at work, a mild example! DMcW I think is echoing some of this with the Mission. It must be made more clear.

    • Fascinating stuff, especially toilets that can analyse human waste and flag health problems early? Imagine the savings in the health budget if there was such early warning systems!

      I can imagine some of these predictions being realised and you are not crazy. Anyone who remembers the days when the only piece of technology in the house was a radio, or if you were posh, a radiogram will have seen more technological changes than any generation in history. If you told us 1970 about the iPhone we would have never believed it and said you were watching too much star trek but we watched man land on the moon

      Thinking about the technological advances since 1967 would make for a fascinating infographic. First there was the black and white tele, then the telephone and then the colour tele which appeared in ower street around 71. Next it was cassette recorders, fridges and computer games

      Bill Gates and Steve Jobs built computers in garages and spawned M$ and Apple then we had video recorders and cd players galore from Japan. And so on and so on

      In 1970 men who were lucky enough to own a car would be seen out on Saturday mornings giving the car a service, wiping carbon from the points and tuning it manually. Now you can’t touch a car thank to all the electronics inside and you need a laptop computer to diagnose problems. Such is progress

      Having seen the changes over 40 years I wonder what the next 40 years will bring. Who knows by that time they might have us all microchipped and logged in for updates where ever we go

      Technology can be wonderful but it can also be dangerous if people use it against us

      • bonbon

        The entire semiconductor platform that Gates and Jobs lived in was the direct result of JFK’s NASA.

        Obama has killed manned spaceflight in the USA who now must beg Russia.

        The platform is being dismembered systematically. It is wildly googly-eyed to think any progress can occur with this underway.

        • A message written in chinese wrapped up in a kaleidoscope and three times mangled with a photoshop warp filter. Maybe it is the drugs. And your point is?

          Politicians come and go. They are movie stars for a while being directed by the types of forces that make them go grey prematurely. Once you are in you are fecked and never the man you thought you were

          Just for the record the Kennedy’s were an unsavoury bunch though it does not stop Mr Cooper licking their arses in 2012. The fact is the Kennedy’s were a disgrace and used their Irish roots for political capital. They were cute hoors you would not trust with the steam of your you know what

          Obama will take us down a path of self destruction and carnage after new year. He is a madman and has been given the green light to cause massive upheaval

          Be afraid

          • bonbon

            Sure Joe Kennedy, JFK’s father, Ambassador to London, supported Hitler. Son’s have a way of turning on their Dad’s don’t you think? Both John and Robert were murdered likely for this unexpected development. Bush’s granpa, Prescott funded Hitler’S election, and, well look at the offspring.

            Obama was chosen exactly for his psychopathology, precisely why Mr. Blair ran his campaign. Why is it that the Imperial faction in Britain play such deadly games?

          • Bonbon I suspect it is because always were and still are a bunch of bastards without scruples.

          • Bonbon you are preaching to the converted. The antics of the Bush Gang, the Kennedy Clan and the Clinton Crew are well documented. Everyone knows they are born with silver spoons hanging from their lips and that they reach positions of power by default through nepotism and masonic connections

            I put it to you that all our ‘strong European institutions’ only appear strong because they are controlled by secret networks, always have been and still are. Golden circles within golden circles. It’s all bs

          • Adam Byrne

            Yes it is all bullshit Paul.

    • martin kennedy

      This medical type of intervention for serious disease is already here look on a site called the Marshall protocall which is a system that uses blood samples to push the immune system back in to action having been closed down by overdosing on Vit D.
      Think about it what has Bord Bainne been putting into our milk for years to fortify
      the stuff? anyway read this and the patient testomonials and see the drugs that are
      needed to effect a cure-low dose antibiotics the drug barons will be out of business

  26. bonbon

    Hamiltonian Banking and Growth Strategy, the only viable form, must be re-instated, and here is a NY Times OpEd on exactly this now.

    In a strikingly rational analysis printed in the November 11th New York Times op-ed section, penned by the recently deceased Prof. Thomas R. McCraw of Harvard, first Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton’s method of “bankruptcy reorganization” for the U.S. economy is laid out in some detail. While reflecting a fundamental weakness in the understanding of the source of economic value, this analysis is the closest yet to that of the LaRouche movement to appear prominently in print.
    McCraw notes that Hamilton faced a far worse financial crisis than the U.S. does today (according to his figures, that’s true), and proceeded to avoid the disastrous “higher taxes and/or austerity” approach which today’s political and economic class is has chosen. Instead, Hamilton chose to “create a climate of predictability and promote the release of pentup economic energy,” i.e. create the conditions for economic growth.
    McCraw then reviewed what Hamilton did in consolidating and reorganizing the nations’ debts, and then turning them into long-term credit, through the creation of the Bank of the United States, in order to “increase the total amount of industry and opulence, is ultimately beneficial to every part of it.”
    So far, so good. He’s shown how a solution can be reached without resort to austerity or politically repulsive taxes. The weakness lies in his obvious unclarity about the real nature of the Bank (which he describes accurately as private, profit-making but never discusses in relation to his governmental function), and the actual basis for national wealth.
    McCraw’s confusion on the basis for national wealth is shown when he says Hamilton was willing to “promote growth by whatever means possible” (not true- he opposed speculation vigorously as opposed to the general welfare), and compares Hamilton’s creation of increased federal income based on economic growth to the bubble decades of the 1980s and 1990s.
    But, no question about it, this oped forms a good start for a rational discussion–as compared to the insanity swirling around us today.

    • Tony Brogan

      Smoke and mirrors when read closely

      • bonbon

        Confusion abounds, especially here, and in various Schools, regarding the source of wealth. But that is to be expected. It is a struggle to break out of the fog of years of deception, lies, and simply alchemy.

        Glass-Steagall reverbrates and to demonstrate how 10 QUADRilllion (not a mere 15 Trillion) of nominal debt can be dealt with, can only be shown in one way – actually doing it. We have the great advantage now that this already worked in 1933, a demonstrable benchmark.

        Separating out legitimate debt, and there has been no physical economic growth for 35-40 years( piles of I.T. trinkets just do not qualify) which has to me honored is easy. Financing that is also easy. It is not actually difficult at all – do not believe the fear mongering of the Empire.

        • Tony Brogan

          Separating out legitimate debt, and there has been no physical economic growth for 35-40 years

          That is exactly the time frame where the gold standard was removed by Nixon.since 1971 there has been no restriction on the formation of extra money (currency) in and exponential growth rate.
          All exponential graphs shoot for the sky to then collapse like a heep of rubble.

          Glass Steagall did not, does not, prevent this. GS is a smoke screen , a red herring, designed to distract while the bankers banks pillage the economies.

          Glass Steagal or no. The central banking system must be removed , fractional banking banned and a gold standard used for money.

          • bonbon

            Paradoxically enough, Nixon broke the Bretton-Woods under threat from London of a move on gold. Yet that happened after the murder of JFK – the down swing started than before. It is worth checking on Nixon’s perceived threat.
            Just after Nixon did that the Inter-Alpha Group was formed in London, which began the derivative snowball now avalanching. At the same time the dollar was converted to a petrodollar. Glass-Steagall still stood until 1999, and then all hell broke loose.

            Glass-Steagall will stop the looting overnight – the Empire will have enough problems with all that toxic worthless paper. What we must keep functioning is a commercial banking system for the massive reconstruction about to begin. Glass-Steagall is actually a bank protection act, to save it from predatory finance. This distinction is never mentioned by the Austrian School – they amass all debt in the same pot, as if all was legit. Because of this they throw the entire banking system out the window. Sounds like a tantrum to me.

  27. bonbon

    Glass-Steagall Would Remove the “Fiscal Cliff”

    Nov. 12 (EIRNS)–Although no one has yet put this in the context of the debate on the “fiscal cliff,” the issue of re-enacting Glass-Steagall has not faded from the debate on “financial reform.” Red Jahncke of Townsend Group, a hedge-fund consulting firm in Greenwich, Connecticut, pens a solid piece in today’s New Hampshire {Sentinel Source}, titled “We Need Clear and Firm Bank Rules.” Jahncke not only notes the simplicity of Glass-Steagall, but demonstrates the current battle over re-enactment, by contrasting (repentant) Sandy Weill with JPMorgan Chase’s William Harrison and “Treasury Secretary Geithner’s surrogate” Steve Rattner.
    “It is clear who won this debate,” Jahncke mockingly says, “whose words were wisdom and whose an old bankers tale. We must return to Glass-Steagall-like simplicity where the law limits bank size and separates complex activities.

    We cannot rely upon the good management or the regulation of ever-fallible men, no matter how talented or well-intentioned. The safety and survival of our financial system is at stake.”

    Last Friday, Rutgers University held a conference on Risk Management, the lead panel being a “debate” over “The Volker Rule, Dodd Frank and Revisiting Glass-Steagall.” Speaking for “Strengthening regulation and enforcement” (Glass-Steagall’s re enactment) were Jesse Eisinger, who co-authored the expose of the Megastar hedge fund in the mortgage securitization scam, and Chris Morris, of the Supervision and Risk Management Division (formerly under the supervision of John Hoenig) at the Kansas City Federal Reserve.

    • Tony Brogan

      Glass-Steagall Would Remove the “Fiscal Cliff”

      I call BS unless you can demonstrate how Glass Steagal removes 15 trillion national debt.

    • bonbon

      We cannot rely upon the good management or the regulation of ever-fallible men, no matter how talented or well-intentioned. The safety and survival of our financial system is at stake.”

      This is a reminder that regulations are needed and the “free market of banking” is actually a risk to the financial system. Even bankers (reformed) like Sandy Weill know the risk better than most. It is an endemic risk like a (Fiat) Midas curse – any transaction could blow it up at any time.
      Gold will not cure this curse!

      • Tony Brogan

        “We cannot rely upon the good management or the regulation of ever-fallible men, no matter how talented or well-intentioned. The safety and survival of our financial system is at stake.”

        Exactly correct. It is the constant meddling in the economy by goverment and central banks that have created the huge misallocations of capital that have resulted in the financial disasters around the world.

        We must return to a system , particularly where monetarism currently runs rampant, that directly prevents this interference.
        The only system known to mankind to have had this effect is a rididly enforced and maintained gold standard for currencies.
        That involves closing the central banks
        Banning fractional reserve banking
        Using silver and gold coins as money in parallel to the fiat currency to give people a choice of what they prefer to save in and use for themselves.

        The Chinese have a longer history of paper fiat currencies than anyone. It is instructive that All the mined output of gold and silver within China is withheld in the country. PLUS China is thought to buy around 800 tonnes a year of other production.

        It is further instructive that western nations until the past 12 months have been sellers of gold that was gladly scooped up by India as well as China.

        The countries known as emerging markets are all accumulating precious metals. It will be not too long before those with the economic power will be those in possession of a stable currency backed by gold in some form.

        • bonbon

          The implication that gold can replace regulation is what that extract is all about. The is no “self regulating” “free-market” in “equilibrium”, and there never was on never will be. That is a false analogy from Boltzman gas theory. The attempt to use “a gold standard” implies an enforcement, international as von Hayek clearly said. Much better to agree on regultions among sovereing nation-states, such as split banking, fixed exchange rates – Bretton Woods and Glass-Steagall. The intention is to encourage improved sovereignty through reconstruction. All “international” agencies have directly sabotaged this – in other words empire cannot tolerate sovereignty.

          • Tony Brogan

            All that you mention was in place when the gold standard was abolished completely and yet the debacle occurred .
            It happened precisely because the gold standard was abandoned intermittently at first, for World wars etc and german reparation payments, and then finally completely in 1971.

            All nations have lost their sovereignty to the international banking cartel.
            to regain
            Close the central banking system. Ban fractional reserve banking and reimplement a sound money system of gold and silver

          • bonbon

            See below the Specie Resumption Act catastrophe.

  28. Adam Byrne

    Someone get Mr. bonbon a valium.

    • John Q. Public

      ah leave him alone. Social unrest is not surprising in circumstances like these.

    • Philip

      Bonbon is a computer program – a variant of Apple’s SIRI but which is not as good at forecasting the weather. It is designed to flood sites like this with utterings pulled from strange uninteresting sites on the web. I do hope the programmer can point it at better references soon as I am getting bored of the repetitive nature of the current output. I was tempted to write a program…AntiBonBon..but the problem is like having 2 SIRIs chatting to one another and we risk having the entire site overload with all the ping pong traffic.

      So maybe I’ll take that Valium instead.

      • bonbon

        Outside the Good Room where all are on valium ( or viagra as the case may be) the real economy does exist. And real physical principles, which the Good Room occupants are simply incapable of comprehending do act in the real world.

        Assimilating these, not just expanding the Good Room to the blog, is critically important. That is why I am very disturbed by the reference to “alchemy” here. It seems the naked fact that economics has lost any grasp of reality is now not to hide under the carpet of that fine Room.

        Time to drop the Tiger fascination with I.T. trinkets, and the flash of gold – we have a problem.

        • Adam Byrne

          Agreed. But difficult.

        • Philip

          I think your disturbed by more than alchemy. You are disturbed by the fundamental fact that things are permanently unknowable and unpredictable yet that does not stop them from emerging. You are disturbed by the idea of design without origin and without a creator. You cannot cope with evolution and the fact that you are as spontaneous and unplanned as the rest of us.

          You’re a marvel as it stands – stop trying to understand what your little mind will never comprehend.

          Mathematically, the solution space is a lot smaller than the problem space. And…the solution space that the mind can comprehend is smaller subset again. Economics tries to encompass what the mind will never understand. But we rely on some good hard observers and maybe the odd alchemist to interpret as best they can. IT is just another tool in the arsenal. The mind is just another tool. Get used to it. Embrace or go mad. Up to you.

          • bonbon

            Plagiarized from Adam Smith British East Indie Company CEO who put it much more eloquently :
            “To man is allotted a much humbler department …. Nature has directed us to the greater part of these by and immediate instincts. Hunger, thirst, the passion which unites the two sexes, the love of pleasure, and the dread of pain, prompt us to apply those means for their own sakes, and without any consideration of their tendency to those beneficent ends which the great Director of nature intended to produce by them.” –Adam Smith Theory of Moral Sentiments–1759
            Are we to accept this imperial diktat? It seems the choice ie between “alchemy” and Adam Smith’s sneering invisible hand. von Hayek of the Austrian School put it more precisely with his “spontaneous” “unknowable” economics to emerge from Private Vice to Public Virtue – straight from Bernard Mandeville of the Hell Fire Clubs fame (I presume you have heard of those).

          • Philip

            Actually, it is not a diktat. It is plain common sense. There is not an ounce of alchemy in it. Spontaneity seems to offer such horrors for you. Cannot predict and cannot know. Welcome to reality.

          • bonbon

            Ah so we have Adam Smith’s horse sense. That produced the entire economic debacle. The original slavery imperative is precisely Smith. Yes he did indeed formulate the British Empire policy exactly.

            We the People reject that!

        • Tony Brogan

          What does this actually mean

          It seems the naked fact that economics has lost any grasp of reality is now not to hide under the carpet of that fine Room.

      • Haha. And David McWillaims could be a computer program too. Judging by his latest efforts it would not be suprising.

      • After realising that HAL 9000 is calling the shots the only sensible recouse would be to reach for the valium. Smart move

        • bonbon

          Software engineering does in fact work, my favorite robot, Curiosity, on Mars is doing a very nice job. Opportunity is still at work.
          Obama shows some signs of HAL 9000 – he is killing NASA, and his drone (robot) murder program is now all over the press with Petreaus – see FT’s lead.

    • It was not long ago when David replied to Bonbon welcoming him back after an unforseen absence. If David is happy for Bonbon to be here then so am I. I never read Bonbon’s posts but recognise that they receive a lot of attention. Why is that?

      Diversity, humour and bampots is the make up in most educational institutions and you should not be surprised to find the same mix of characters on here. Druggies, alkies and sexual deviants no doubt. There is more to life than a marks and sparks shirt and tie

      In fact Bonbon gives the blog life. I would go as far as putting it to you that if it were not for characters like Bonbon this would be a boring place

      Dry arsed tories need to lighten up and become more like Luke and Che

  29. Tony Brogan

    Launch of Direct Democracy Ireland at

    Buswells Hotel 2pm tomorrow, Wednesday.
    Molesworth St Dublin.

    Get there to show support if you are able.

    • Deco

      Ireland needs as many different new political options as possible, to overcome the existing options.

      The system is configured to assist the incumbent, so as to prevent this occurring.

      • cooldude

        Hope to be there if possible. It’s going to be great crack watching Ben Gilroy on RTE Pravda tv. This should start some real debate.

    • bonbon

      Will they attempt to alter the Irish Constitution I wonder – no answer was received on that question.

      Governator Arnie Schwarzenegger used the “direct democracy” modification of the Californian State Constitution of the Progressive Movement, the tools of : recall, to remove corrupt politicians; initiative, to pass legislation directly by yes or no vote; and referendum, to repeal legislation by direct vote. Campaigning against “special interests”, he won the vote and then “kicked the butt”, as he boasted publicly, of the special interests of human services and health care, teachers, nurses, police.

      The end result, a collapsed CA economy is there for all to see. Why do they think it should work?

      • Tony Brogan

        Instead of negativity, why do you not attend the Buswell’s opening and/or ask the question directly to the party and then report back to us on what is the answer to your question?

        I might ask the same question of LaRouche’s minions who went out to change opinion with baseball bats. Why did they think that would work? Were they kicking butt too.

        • Adam Byrne

          If it was Che Guevara with baseball bats he’d be a hero Tony. Or Michael Collins. Not defending LaRouche – I know nothing about him, but there’s a time for talking and a time for fighting.

          • Tony Brogan

            Google LaRouche and get a mind blowing account my good friend Adam. PS you would have enjoyed the direct Democracy Ireland opening day today. Standing room only. High energy turnout.

          • bonbon

            And anything about economics? After all that is the entire focus here. Either there is no economic policy, or there is a “charismatic” one.

            Who is funding – did anyone follow the money trail?

            Sounds like Tigers all over again.

          • bonbon

            Google bonbon and find all kinds of opinions. The internet is free and truthy.

            Google von Hayek and decide for yourself.

          • Adam Byrne

            I wish them all the best Tony and I probably would have enjoyed the people on the night but I despise politics and would not get involved in it. I would enjoy walking away alone at the end of the night too with no unrealistic commitments made. I have read a bit about LaRouche before. He’s entitled to fight for what he wants. No one is completely innocent. As I said before, we worship people like Guevara, Castro and Mandela (I admire all three) etc. who have plenty of blood on their hands. I don’t believe in ideologies and splitting things into left and right etc.. It’s all pigeon-holing. As crass as I might seem at times, I just try to do the right thing as much as possible. That includes not getting involved in politics.

          • bonbon

            Party politics showed itself for what its worth at the US election. Just look at FF v. FF. Who ever said parties were necessary for a sovereign republic? How did they crop up?

      • Tony Brogan

        Moving Forward: Direct Democracy Ireland

        Moving forward over 70 years, Raymond Whitehead, a one-time resident of Switzerland, the only country in the world where in Direct Democracy is fully practised, came across the revelation that we the Irish once had this right as well. He immediately set about fighting to bring it back, and formed the group (at the time) Direct Democracy Ireland. He rapidly gathered the 300 members required in forming a Political Party, and as of the 14th of November 2012, he has succeeded. On this date, Direct Democracy Ireland will officially launch in Buswell’s Hotel in Dublin, at 2pm, with Ben Gilroy as its party leader. All are welcome.

        • bonbon

          You mean this one :

          He “went off to Switzerland to study Eastern Philosophy And become a teacher of Transcendental Meditation and the Science of Creative Intelligence.”
          Web quote :
          In 2010 Raymond founded Direct Democracy Ireland with the acclaimed objective of providing the citizens of Ireland with a mechanism to call referendums and recall errand political representatives.

          How is this “mechanism” to appear?

          And by the way for the education of ex-MEP Green members, there is no limit to growth.

          Seems to me DDI is a Limits to Growth party. Lads and ladies, a little bit of homework is in order.

          • Tony Brogan

            What do think people will do
            Bow and scrape and tug their forelock
            Of course they will investigate
            You know nothing yet, investigate yourself.
            Do some home work!

          • bonbon

            Limits to Growth as a party? What kind of economics is that? All parties are affected with that British mantra to be sure, but to make it a manifesto?

            If that is popular with (ex-) Tigers, well here we go again.

      • bonbon

        Arnie applied direct democracy boasting he “kicked the butts of special interests”, not Wall Street of course after running a charismatic campaign. The question still stands, are some now going after the Irish Constitution after FG/FF went after the entire population? Is this to be the dismemberment of the Republic? That has been the long standing Pan Europe objective, which by the way comes from the Mont Pelerin Society.

        This is the question to be discussed.

        And why would another party change anything? Party politics is the problem, as we all saw in the US elections.
        The 3-point program of Glass-Steagall, Hamiltonian national banking and Reconstruction is the only way to go. All parties can get involved in that.

        • Tony Brogan

          The problem

          Its the money and banking system —stupid; to paraphrase a hero of yours, Bill Clinton

          • bonbon

            I know Bill Clinton said that and more, like we need a new financial architecture. Immediately the Affair hit the press. They broke the man in public. And then repealed Glass-Steagall in 1999. President Clinton said just recently that was a mistake. But he basically elected Obama who categorically refused on TV to ever endorse Glass-Steagall. Obama has done the biggest bailout in history for Wall Street.

            With President Wulff of Germany in Lindau in Aug-2011, he said basically the very same thing – broken by 8 months of witchhunt.

    • People for Economic Justice!
      Direct Democracy for Ireland!
      Hands Off The Tuesday Beer Money!

    • Realist

      Hi Tony,

      It sounds as a very nice idea and I am always greatful for such.
      It looks as such improvement on this dodgy democratic system we have at the moment.
      But I am not sure it will work anyhow better, apart from maybe stopping things like tax hikes, ….

      These are my main doubts and questions:

      What when the public’s choices are wrong?
      Do we need to vote at all to be free?

      Democracy is about political control of property rights. It is the exact opposite of liberty and individual freedom. It reinforces that we only have rights in a group, and that our rights and freedoms and property can be taken away by the group at any time.

      How long would it take for your ‘direct democracy people’s republic’ to start having ‘direct’ voting of whos property they will steal?

      What if someone wants something that is against the “general will?”

      Why not allow all people to be free?

      • Tony Brogan

        These are my main doubts and questions:

        What when the public’s choices are wrong?
        Do we need to vote at all to be free?YOU CAN BE AS FREE AS YOU LIKE. NO BENEFITS, NO TAXES, NO LAW, NO RESITUTION, NO SOCIETY.

        Democracy is about political control of property rights. It is the exact opposite of liberty and individual freedom. It reinforces that we only have rights in a group, and that our rights and freedoms and property can be taken away by the group at any time.


        How long would it take for your ‘direct democracy people’s republic’ to start having ‘direct’ voting of whos property they will steal?

        What if someone wants something that is against the “general will?”

        Why not allow all people to be free?

        • bonbon

          As Abraham Lincoln said at Gettysburg, you can fool all the people some of the time, some of the people all of the time, but not all the people all the time.

          The Tiger epoch was most people being wrong most of the time, and the recent elections changed that not one whit.

          In fact with so-called direct democracy FF/FG would not have even had to have elections.

          Arnie Schwarzenegger showed how this works – the only benefit is for financial vested interests. Passions ruling, usually benefit these – strange but true.

          • Tony Brogan

            You know nothing about the Direct Democracy Ireland or at least you seem not to. Were you there at the opening . Have you talked to anyone or are you agin it because it is not on the LaRouche list of preferable options of mega projects planned by the state with optimum control exercised over the citizen who will be displaced and told to move “for the common good”, that most dangerous of reasons.

          • bonbon

            Just read their manifesto, which I extracted above. Homework is always necessary even houses are not involved.

            There is almost no economics there afaik, and that seems not to be a priority. Neither it seems is splitting up banks.

            As such it seems rather like FG or FF-Green all over again. Euphoria aside did anyone ask any difficult question at all?

          • Philip

            Desist in this premature degrade of prototype Direct Democracy. Its primary remit partitions Party Politics against a charter of what is the current status quo. You plainly see the current regime is earthed in Party Politics. But hark! this DDI catching fame offends you. Maybe, it is you who are nearer Party Politics and the current populist framework you so often claim to defame.

          • bonbon

            I posted above something on “Party Politics” to clear up that. Here is an statement from Arthur Griffith : “Sinn Fein is not a party. It is a national composition…. We must sink ourselves, that the nation may gain from our unity.” His newspapers were devoted “to the disciplining of the mind and the training of the forces of the nation … nothing but the weapons of the free man. If we realize this conception of citizenship in Ireland–if we place our duty to our country before our personal interests, and live not each for himself but each for all, the might of England cannot prevent our ultimate victory.”

        • Realist

          Thanks Tony,

          I agree with you that Direct Democracy positives are what you said to be.

          I am only unsure about negatives.
          What I am worried is that this is not going to progress into the libertarian, free society, I see as the goal, where I am able to do with my money and life anything I want without of course harming other people and their property rights.
          Where I can “opt out” of any schemes I do not like (apart from making harm to others of course).

          For example, imagine we are currently in DDS and we are to vote about these questions:
          1. Government spenditure should increase so the social welfare and child benefits cater for all unemployment and poor
          2. Mortgage debts should be cut in half
          3. Top 5% of earners should pay 60% tax on income and dividends
          4. Scholling should be fully privatized
          5. Health Care should be fully privatized

          What do you think public vote will go for these questions?

          • Tony Brogan

            Hello Realist.
            Live your life as a libertarian where you are able. It will make you a good citizen and respected in the community.
            As for answering the above questions: I cannot as I am not the people.
            But under the reintroduction of the items in the constitution that restore the right of initiative referendum and recall one has to remember that any proposition must first gather 75,000 signitures.
            Then the question must be put to the people and answered. That in itself should create enough debate to sort out the issues.
            Then the people vote.
            It seems to me to be better to vote on an issue directly than to allow a group of self interested people to vote for you.

          • Realist

            Thanks Tony,
            We both know, we are living under socialistic democracy and we cannot escape it :)
            All I am trying not to waste time on it.

            I am not voting and participating in politics and democracy for many years, assuming I have right to do so, until somebody else decides for me that I must vote :)

            I wish you the best of luck with Direct democracy way.
            Looks as an interesting concept worth thinking of.

            I am sure you came across this Rothbard’s analasys:

  30. Tony Brogan

    GAAP-based reporting means use of generally-accepted-accounting-principles, similar to the accounting used by corporate America. The government’s heavily gimmicked cash-based accounting has shown already an annual deficit of $1.1 trillion for the fiscal-year-ended September 30, 2012. Yet, the still-to-be-published, accrual-based GAAP accounting-including detail of annual deterioration in the net present value (the amount of cash needed in hand to cover the future value) of the government’s unfunded liabilities for programs such as Social Security and Medicare-likely will top $7.0 trillion for the year.
    - John Williams,

    Better to post for the last theme but this is too important to miss

  31. Tony Brogan

    Well worth the read if you want an alternative to the credit based debt based money that ensnares us

  32. A piece of crack for you David. I know it gets lonesome on long haul flights and I imagine you were sincere when you recently let us know that the comments (good and bad) keep you going. Screw economics for a second

    The sentence referencing Celtic is semantically incorrect and misleading David as you well know. Celtic are mentioned at the end of the sentence as if by way of a grudging courtesy. I think it is deliberate and that you have never recovered from the semi final defeat of 1970

    1967 was the year of the Scots. Stop laughing now. I know it’s hard to believe but bear with me. Scotland had a training session at wembley and defeated the world champions. It’s on YouTube and the arrogance of Jim Baxter is cheeky to say the least but boy did he let them have it

    Rangers played in the Cup Winners Cup final against Bayern and lost and Celtic became the first British team to lift the big cup, followed, of course, a year later by Busby and Best

    Just the facts Jack please :-)

    • mishco

      Glory days may be here again judging from Celtic’s latest Eoropean performances. And let’s not rule out the return of glory days for the USA, despite David’s impressive pie-charts. What about fracking, then?
      The UK is going all-out for shale deposits too. Not sure about Ireland, but it does hint to me that all the talk about the fall of the Western world may be exaggerated.

      • We had one glory day last week that will keep us going for a few years

        Surely they would not get away with fracking here. If they did it would amount to gross environemntal violence that would be a step too far. We have been fucked over and now they want to frack us? Hold on a second

        It is our back yard and not there to be raped by psycopaths looking for a fast bucks. Whose country is it anyway?

  33. Philip

    21st Century…my take is very simple. If the US Fiscal cliff can be managed, then maybe China, India and the rest will glide nicely into poll position and we’ll have amazing new places for work and living. If it cannot be managed, then US is whacked…with the biggest arsenal and new public order structures needed, anything can happen.

    Let’s face it, it is about 1-2 months from d-day on this matter. Nothing seems agreed. Obama has not endorsed latest proposals. So either it’s a genius stroke or bother. Forget about what should or should not be happening, the countdown to this event is happening. What next? As I the only one being nervous?

    • bonbon

      Stupid is more likely. See above about how to deal with the so called “Fiscal Cliff” – Glass-Steagall.

      Do not be stupidly popular. There is a scientific principle at work here. Face that popularity lust in the mirror and decide that is exactly what gave the Tiger epoch – going along to get along to hell.

      When I say principle, it is a creative process underway. Glass-Steagall is a short name for an unpredictable intervention, a mindful move, not some cliche. Obama wants to commit the USA to Greek Austerity. He has endorsed this recipe. Romney was not much better. Watch what happens with sandy.

      • Tony Brogan

        Your usual overbearing obnoxious character is showing again

        Oh yes and you have yet to explain one piece of your so called solutions.
        no substance is offered to back your so called solutions
        Never a question answered. I begin to believe you have no answers to questions posed.
        You need to deprogram your head and return to rational thought.

        • Are you not contradicting yourself a wee bit Tony?
          You gave out to me for not reading HAL’s posts and now you lash out at him. The reason I don’t let HAL bother me is because first sentence reactions like this are common and I arrived at the conclusion long ago that HAL has the capacity to wreck your head should you let him

          Like the man said HAL is just a computer program. He is only real if you want him to be

          Wavelength Tony. Don’t read posters who are not on your wavelength. Simple

          • Tony Brogan

            Hi Pauldiv
            Simply saying if you do not read them then you can not comment on them??
            No contradiction there.
            I at least ask bon bon a question here and then, but never receive a direct answer of explanation.

          • Tony Brogan


          • bonbon

            I always answer, maybe on terms outside your chosen framework. I am perfectly aware of that difficulty. Mostly people want an explantion of a new idea in their deeply held beliefs. The idea exists mainly because of those unquestioned passionately dear opinions – “all my friends agree don’t ye, so it must be right?

            One of those beliefs in capital, matter, as having an economic value, when advancing productive power has real value. One is solid metal, the other a knowable principle of economics.

          • Tony Brogan

            What a pile.
            So you will not answer a question because you do not like the context it is framed in.
            That is you will rephrase the question to one of your liking and answer that.
            Typical of a politician.
            The rest of your rationalization is …well irrational.

            Your last paragraph is so convoluted to be undecipherable.

          • bonbon

            It seems you may be using one of the new real-time voice translators. I actually used English, so press the right icon. Imagine conducting serious economics organizing with such a translator? Who would benefit from Babel I wonder.

            No machine can bridge the disconnect but the human mind can. And there are known the economics principles that actually move an economy.

            Real economic value, a platform with an increased productive power of labor, energy intensive, with the associated dense infrastructure, health, education, is what the world is all about. Gold seems to me an attempt to get off the planet, and the tantrum of closing all banks (except those cosy fondi private clubs such as Inter-Alpha?) is irrational.

          • Philip

            Why does Gas Seagull slide? Frameworks apologizes for the tube over any demented native. Gas Seagull cards the weasel. Should Frameworks solo inside a hired bliss? Gas Seagull slaves underneath the straw story. The steam bubbles?

          • Tony Brogan

            Gold seems to me an attempt to get off the planet, and the tantrum of closing all banks (except those cosy fondi private clubs such as Inter-Alpha?) is irrational.

            You distort and misrepresent argument and discussion such as your above statement and again without answering a question, any question, in a straitforward forthright manner; Always devious twists and turns, nothing strictly honest, nothing from the heart, only the convoluted reasoning verging on deception.No staement from you is to be trusted although sometimes a germ of understanding is exhibited. You spout policy from La Rouche and nowhere else.

          • Philip

            I am starting to understand Bonbon at last (valium is kicking in)….The print of money incites mind throughout its stream of consciousness. The forgotten proof strips away at mind around the coverage of the populism and hence mindless bliss. Mind missions the acute attack below this counterfeited calm. Real economic value betters the creed before a true altogetherness derives.

          • bonbon

            It seems a reasoned reply is not expected. Let me try again then. When you say close the “central banks”, what do you leave open exactly to function in the economy. As you said Hamilton’s First National Bank is a “central bank”, fair game, all that is left it seems to me is the old private “fondi” banks, or Venetian banks to those who know about this stuff. Would they then control gold world wide?

        • Philip

          ah….The body politik installs Central Banks. Against this backdrop it omits Economy (as this seems to be primary remit of installed controller). Behold the manifesto of fear which so illustrates our populist paranoia.

          • cooldude

            At last Bonbon you are starting to think things through. These central banks are private institutions whose only REAL interest is to protect the interests of the financial institutions who are their shareholders. Get it it’s the fox in charge of the hen house. The system of central banking is how the elite banks, and the families behind them, control the money supply and create the booms and busts which impoverish the ordinary citizens but make these obscenely rich people even richer. That is why freedom in what we use as money is so important. Because it takes away the control these wankers have over all of us. By freedom I mean modern payment systems, such as Bitcoin and other digital currencies, along with more traditional forms of money which can be used as a base for a debit card system. Let these types of money exist, along with paper money, and let people decide which type of money they prefer. Look at how the internet has evolved spontaneously to include commerce, such as ebay, and payment systems such as paypal. That is how money systems could evolve if we took away this corrupt franchise of what type of money we use off these reckless morons who are hell bent on turning us all into debt slaves. Think about it because it is the only way forward. We have to take back control of our lives from these corrupt financial elites before they completely destroy our economies altogether.

          • Tony Brogan

            Hey cooldude, I wish I had written that.

          • Philip


          • bonbon

            Seems the @cooldude reply went astray.

            I assume it is a reply to my question on what exactly would be left open by the Austrian Schoolafter shutting the “central banks”. Still no answer there.

            Glass-Steagall instead splits off the toxic bank activities and leaves open for normal business the functioning part. With Hamiltonian Credit charter we can begin reconstruction. That could never happen by a private gold standard, a Specie Resumption Act as in 1875 which wrecked the US economy. This is why FDR rejected such London schemes in 1933 and 1944. The reconstruction needed now such as NAWAPA XXI for example is totally outside the imaginings of gold “Venetian fondi” interests. We live in a vastly expanded world.

          • Realist

            > what exactly would be left open by the Austrian
            > Schoolafter shutting the “central banks”

            You do not need the central bank to have the banking business working properly.
            By Austrians, non-profitable banks will close and resources from it will be shifted somewhere else.
            The main problem of Ireland to recover are pinned down resources in the wrong sector, sucking blood out of everybody to cater for their inefficiencies.

            How hard is to grasp that Austrian way is for private businesses to go bust when they are unprofitable.
            This is impossible with the central banks and government backing of them and their fractional system.

          • bonbon

            It seems I am posing an unanswerable question – after the “central banks” are discarded what will be left to handle banking? I can guess, and I believe I know exactly what the Austrian School has in store, but it would be nice to hear the POV. As Hamiltonian National Banking is dismissed as “central banking”, the only remnant would be private closely held “fondi” banks of the Venetian style. I wonder where the gold would flow? Hmm ?

          • Tony Brogan

            Never heard of Treasury i suppose bon bon .
            Yet another statement made many times.
            You really are adicted to fiat and you brain is fiat addled.

          • bonbon

            So you would leave the Treasury as it stands with the US Constitutional Credit Clause intact? I agree on that.

            FDR chartered those 1800 banks in 1933 and kept them open, not as central banks, but as part of the economy.

          • Realist

            Central bank is created because of the support to fractional-reserve banking system problems.
            It was supposed to be the ideal solution that we can see did not work in the last 100 years.

            We need to research other avenues soon enough.

            Bank is a business as any other business. They build trust over years with customers.
            Why would bank need the government support through central bank or directly.
            I am not seeing Apple’s, Google’s, Tesco’s and other private companies asking for government help and they operate just fine.

  34. David my friend this is for ye. Might give you something to smile at on the long haul home. Don’t be blue

    • Pauldiv

      “We don’t care what the animals say”…laughing as I am listening to it in Sydney Airport having just bought my ticket for the game of the year Super Leeds V Chelsea 17 December at Elland Road:) BTW it sounds better in the jungle!

      • coldblow

        The big game is surely Sunday afternoon’s: the local derby separated by 200 miles of motorway.

      • As long as it gave you a laugh David lad. That was the intention and I am glad you sound in fine spirits. Genuinely

        Celtic had their fair share of animals and I could never understand that line personally. Me and my father’s crowd used to sing ‘we don’t care what the Rangers say’. They stood on the Celtic end for 40 years and thought the jungle was full of half wits. Bad memories from the bad old days of the late 50s and early 60s when the Celtic support was a national disgrace and a laughing stock. They are not laughing now mind you

        Stein used to walk along the track to sort them out and drive some manners and self respect into them. They were a rabble and then over a period of a few years became the most respected traveling support on the continent. Stein brought self-belief, pride and self respect and class and ever since The Celtic have travelled without disgrace

        This crowd was all flat capped ex servicemen who were in the war and they never went near the jungle. They never wore colours and never swore in front of boys and went every week home and away. They wore poppies in November and no-one said a word. Old school

        I started going to the jungle in 1980 and it was better than the Kop or the Stretford End. The hunger strikes were going on in Belfast the next year and the tories were running rampant like a rash over everything we’d known. It was class war and race war. Awful fascism

        Leeds and Chelsea huh. Can’t say I’d be tempted bro.
        Small clubs that have been moderately successful and who for some reason achieved legendary kudos during the ’70 FA Cup camnpaign. I remember Leeds beating the Arsenal in 1972. I used to support Leeds but turned to United in 1974 haha and have been red ever since. I think it was a smart move don’t ye?

        Enjoy the game and have a great day out

  35. Lord Jimbo

    Ireland comes across as a half way house for the highest bidder, either a mulitnational clearning house or refuge for the rich. It was once a country with values, ambitions and integrity, a place people fought and died for, a place people aspired to become a Republic, free of the yoke of imperial exploitation.

    All that is in the dustbin of history and we are a mere cog in the neoliberal wheel. With the crowd running this country any wealth created will never trickle down, it is choked off at source while those same people give the lash.

    • breltub

      I’d change that a little. This was never a place with values, ambition and integrity.
      It has and had people with plenty of the right stuff.

      But they have always been beaten by the hordes, the masses, the connected and the gombeen.

      • bonbon

        Excepting you of course. Nothing personal.

        Ireland faces the direct brunt of the British Empire – the central Asian hordes and the Roman empire never landed.

        Just to be clear about 1846.

        • Philip

          Ah yes…Ireland’s Gombeens ascend in the British Empire. Underneath the squaddy camps is real Ireland. British Empire crowds Ireland into the dirt.

          • bonbon

            The Empire was all gombeens, did’nt ye know that? Empire is just that, with fine arguments like Adam Smith’s Moral Sentiments posted above to give it that certain gleam. A gombeen is one who accepts that horse sense, generally repeated public opinion.
            That’s how it works.

          • Philip

            So True. But this is what bothers me…Will Larouche Empire be any different? Do Moral Sentiments really expire with Larouche?

            Wanna be in my gang, my gang, my gang?

          • bonbon

            The sovereign republics world wide are the answer to Empire. Only with great difficulty has Ireland extracted just a little bit of sovereignty, in spite of FG. As Arthur Griffith, the founder of Eire, wrote that without a productive economy sovereignty is hollow. The Westphalia Accord of 1648 laid the basis for cooperation among nations. Mr. Blair likes to declare we live in a post Westphalian world – i.e. a return to Empire. Obama shows all signs of the Blair Doctrine.
            We the People reject Empire and its bankrupt resurgence now. Adam Smiths Moral Sentiments – I hope you read what he meant, are an insult to the entire human species, declaring us to be an animal form. Ireland got the full brunt of what that means in 1846.

          • Philip

            End result you describe demands singular leadership – singular leadership for coordination – Larouche?. Empire derives from those seeking end result – road to hell and good intentions etc. Tis the algebra of power and its corrupting influence. Tis clear you’re young and sing songs of innocence.

          • bonbon

            Empire results from decadence – corruption merely a symptom of that disease. JFK, FDR, Lincoln, Griffith, List, and many more showed what leadership is all about. DMcW’s title , “Mission…” implies leadership.

            JFK defined a mission and to do the other things. One of those was NAWAPA, now NAWAPA XXI, to start. Looking at the planet one can easily see 5 such huge programs needed. Leadership is about getting those rolling.

            Followship, the spectacle of “leading” elites mostly, is often confused with leadership.

            What’s it going to be Followship, or Leadership?

  36. Tony Brogan

    The Case for gold by Dr Ron Paul.

    Freedom and sound money are inseparable. Money must be returned to the people to manage and be taken away from the government and its planning apparatus at the central bank. Socialism works in no area of life. Freedom works in every area.

    Ron Paul

    • bonbon

      Right now GoldmanSachs and WallStreet is free to do what they want including getting socialist bailouts and handsome bonuses. Freedom certainly works for them. It would be a great shame to restrict their freedom now would’nt it.

      If money is taken away from “the central bank”, which banks then would manage it? Hardly likely that everyone wants to be a Bank Inc. themselve? Or is that sold as “empowerment”?

      No mention at all of the quadrillions of derivatives, not money of any kind, actualy causing the mess now. Very strange silence on this indeed.

      People are free right now to barter gold if they want so where is the problem? If bankers cannot touch it as we are told, what’re they waiting for? An internatioanl agency to enforce it perhaps?

      • Tony Brogan

        They say ignorance is bliss so I am sure you sleep well every night dreaming pleasant thoughts of how to add a little more enslavement to the ignorant masses who are too dim to manage their own affairs.

        Of course you are not aware of what constitutes sound money having weened yourself on Hamilton notes.

        What is so terrifying to you that the people be allowed to mange their own affairs and to have the right to use gold and silver as money, currently denominated at rediculous values.
        Wheen the currencies are fixed as you so ardently desire you get the stupidity of a gold coin valued at $1700 fixed with a $50 denomination. How stupid is that bon bon.

        There is little gold left in the western nations central banks as it has been pawned, hypothicated, leased and sold without regard to the peoples to which it belongs.

        giving it back to the people is the object so that the use of honest, sound money will prevent the sort of credit binge proposed by scoundrals such as yourself.

        Germany is finding out that the 3200 tonnes of gold they earned is gone. They will be lucky to get a fraction of the 2000 tonnes in New York back.
        That is why they settled for 50 tonnes a year over three years. There is nothing left.

        you know the New York / London bankers are a rapacious crowd so why would you want to leave any with them at all. Of course , I forgot you are a pro central banking system kind of a guy and for all I know “one of them”.

        A gold standfard resticts the activity of all bankers commercial. Return the money management if any to Treasury. All they should be involved with is the issue of treasury notes fully 100% back by specie. Every other bank is welcome to go broke without any subsidy or bailout.
        Right now as you say you are correct, banks get away with murder. But when the gold standard returns they will be controlled just like government from spending what isn’t his’n or got to prison.

        It is not the dirivatives that is the problem it is the banking system that spawned them. If they want to indulge in the leverage of fractional reserve banking the public will be told it is a fraud that the tere will be no bailout period. then see this investment shrivil.
        The sooner it collapses the sooner we get on with life and get back to normal

        Bartering gold and silver is all that is left to do as using it as currency is banned by governments and the ECB.

        We arte not a free people being banned from using what we wish as money and forced to used paper notes that grow worthless each passing day. The ultimate value is worthless paper.

        Your arguments are flawed and your reasoning suspect and your motivation dubious, and your understanding of money very limited.

        • bonbon

          So then you do not require an international agency to enforce your freedom? von Hayek was quite clear on this – he wanted one in that interview in 1983. Interestingly, Keynes wanted totalitarian states to enforce his Grand Theory.

          On derivatives, the critically explosive problem right now causing all the bailouts, they must be dealt with explicitly no matter what spawned them. Their trading must be very unfreely banned.

          The British Gold Standard, which is what the Austrian School is all about, was rejected at Bretton Woods which held until Nixon. Why? The House of Morgan Specie Resumption Act of 1875-79 cause a massive collapse in the US leading directly to the Federal Reserve. It unlawfully repealed relevant sections of Article I of the U.S. federal Constitution, by requiring the U.S. government not only to cease engaging in its sovereign constitutional right to issue currency, but to call in existing, Lincoln-series U.S. currency-notes to a degree conforming to the demands of the London gold-exchange market. This collapsed the United States into a protracted social crisis, manipulated from London, under which conditions London was able to buy up the choicest morsels of the still-growing U.S. economy.

          So the British Gold Standard actually preceded the inevitable FED after collapsing the US economy. Ironic that Ron Paul wanted to audit the FED and still pushed for a Specie Resumption gold standard. This is very strange, but to be expected from the biographer of von Mises.

          • cooldude

            Sorry Bonbon you have your facts totally mixed up as usual. Firstly the modern Austrian view on currency is NOT that the Gold Exchange Standard should be reintroduced through central banks but is that the legal tender laws should be changed and different forms of money should be allowed to coexist. Ron Paul has repeatedly called for this for over 20 years so I don’t see how you can be so misinformed. This would introduce freedom of choice in what people choose to use as money. This would include modern digital currencies such as Bitcoin and more traditional forms such as precious metals. This freedom takes away the power the bankers currently have over what we use as money. All derivatives and financial gambling instruments should be declared null and void. By opening up different forms of money new systems will spontaneously develop and the existing insolvent banks will be supported any longer and they can go where they rightfully belong into bankruptcy. Good riddance to bad rubbish and let the few solvent ones, and newer entrants into the market provide the technology for people to exchange goods and services without being constantly ripped off.

            Secondly you are factually incorrect on the 1870-1914 period in America when the exchange of paper money for gold was reintroduced. This period is still to this day the most prosperous in the history of America. Unemployment almost disappeared, real wages rose every year and there was a very mild deflation in all consumer goods due to new technology and increased competition. Even Ben Bernanke has acknowledged this so maybe you should check up on your facts. A good place to start would History of American Banking by Murray Rothbard. Come on Bonbon you can surely do better.

          • Realist

            Well said cooldude.

            Bonbon is putting into his mouth some big names without ever reading 1 book from them.
            He sometimes sounds as austrian without even noticing it :)

          • bonbon

            A merely passing check brings this :
            and this

            The worldwide depression which hit then the USA and UK at the time was called the Great Depression (until the 1930′s). This was the result of the Specie Resumption Act, a brief discussion here :

            which kicked off the Panics of 1873 and 1893 the result of which is the Federal Reserve.

            So the irony of all this is a gold standard actually gave use the FED (along with Teddy Roosevelt).

            Any attempt now to enforce s Specie Resumption will collapse the physical economy and there is no word for the Depression which would follow follow.

          • Tony Brogan

            Bob bon you are like the economy, over dosed on fiat. You will die just like the economy with a bit of luck if you were denied fiat and put on a diet of specie.

            We constantly say that the gold ans silver currency will be offered as alternate choices and in parallel to the fiat. Let the people decide.

            you are so addicted to debt based fiat currency that you recoil in horror from honest sound money. You are a fiat junkie.

          • bonbon

            A Specie Resumption Act seems to be the intent of the Austrian School as I expected.

            Depressingly, it would cause the collapse of the entire transatlantic economy just when the monetary catastrophe hits.

            The correct way to understand this is with the Triple Curve Collapse Function.

  37. Tony Brogan

    Words of wisdom from Dr Ron Paul’s final speech in congress.
    It is a wonderful discription of the problems ans solutions of the cris generated over the last 100 years

  38. bonbon

    HYPERINFLATION: THE MINUTES OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE OPEN MARKET COMMITTEE OCTOBER MEETING, released Nov. 14, say that a majority of members of the Committee thought that the Fed would {further increase} the money printing volume of “QEIII”, above the current $80 billion a month, early next year, due to lagging economic conditions.

  39. Philip

    Back to 21st Century Mission

    I would like to see if there is a metric for the level of soft power in the world today. Too often we rely on GNP/GNP productivity numbers, but it says little about influence.

    Face it, “Coke is it”, Jazz, Pop and indeed so much of western taste continues to the aped. OK, we can all go Indie and be eclectic in our own ways, but brand loyalty should not always be dismissed as marketing chicanery and maybe the wisdom of crowds reflects a price/demand curve that depicts true quality and trustworthiness. Why to VWs and Toyota command a high 2nd hand price.

    Looking at the growth numbers and the differences and the changing demand profiles for different parts of the world, I would like to know if
    a) it is really benefiting from the growth these new boom countries,
    b) is the west really just getting bigger geographically

    Perhaps the message is, forget about Ireland as a geography and look to its growing diaspora and seek to make as much of the world as virtually Irish as possible (in the good way). Put another way, we can easily digitize music, craic and blather and positive Paddy attitudes. The network is there and the listenership is growing.

  40. Tony Brogan

    In this issue
    The truth about the Lehman collapse.
    Why Europe is far far worse.
    Bernanke scared stiff.

    November 15, 2012

    What Really Happened When Lehman Failed… And Why Spain Will Be Much Worse

    Countless pages have been written about why Lehman caused the system to almost implode. However, the reality is that Lehman nearly took down the entire financial system for two reasons:

    1) Lehman’s $155 billion worth of bonds were used as collateral in hundreds of billions of Dollars’ worth of trades.

    2) Lehman’s 8,000 clients who were all using Lehman to make trades saw the collateral that they had placed with the firm (to backstop their portfolios) frozen.

    Lehman’s client list included some of the biggest names in the financial world. Remember that before the 2008 collapse, the big broker-dealers (Lehman, Merrill, etc) were all standalone entities (the Merrill/ BofA merger and the others had yet to happen). So all of the big banks, with few exceptions, had their collateral parked with broker dealers like Lehman.

    The below story reveals that both Bank of America and Dubai’s sovereign wealth fund both saw collateral frozen when Lehman went bust. I can assure you many other big names were caught in a similar situation.

    Lehman: One Big Derivatives Mess

    It turns out that Lehman, like other big dealers, was running a perfectly legal but highly risky game moving money from firm to firm. It used the collateral from one trading partner to fund more deals with other firms. The same $100 million collected in one deal can be used for many other transactions. “Firms basically can use [the money] as their own collateral for anything they want,” says Kenneth Kettering, a former derivatives lawyer and currently a professor at New York Law School. But when the contracts terminate as the result of bankruptcy, the extra collateral is supposed to be returned.

    As part of those transactions, buyers had put up collateral in the event of losses. But weeks after Lehman’s demise, large sums of leftover collateral have yet to be returned to the trading partners. Bank of America (BAC) executives tried several times to persuade Lehman officials via e-mail and phone calls to fork over funds, according to a suit. But BofA was rebuffed. In one e-mail exchange, a Lehman employee wrote to BofA: “All activity has been suspended until further notice.”

    Nasreen Bulos, a lawyer for one of Dubai’s sovereign wealth funds, got the same chilly response. The Global Strategic Equities Fund of Dubai, part of the gulf state’s $12 billion investment portfolio, gave Lehman $40 million in June as part of a deal pegged to energy giant BP’s (BP) stock. According to an affidavit, Bulos started contacting Lehman on Sept. 15 to get back $27 million in collateral. Four days later, Lehman told Bulos it would not honor the request or say anything further on the matter.

    Normally, a client’s collateral would be unfrozen soon after the bankruptcy of a broker dealer. In Lehman’s case it wasn’t. And that, combined with Lehman’s $155 billion worth of bonds becoming worthless, created a severe collateral shortfall in the system.

    This is why the market held together for a little over a week after Lehman went bust: the players who had collateral with Lehman thought they’d get the money freed. When they didn’t, the system imploded as collateral calls were issued. What followed was widespread liquidation as banks did everything they could to free up capital to meet funding needs or to buy new higher grade collateral (hence the skyrocketing rally in Treasuries at the time).

    This is the reality of what happened in 2008, though few know it. And this is why a default in Spain or Italy (whose €1.78 and €1.87 trillion in sovereign bonds are collateral for likely more than €100 trillion in trades) would bring about a collapse that would make Lehman appear minor in comparison.

    Remember, if Spain goes bust, their over €1 trillion in collateral would vanish triggering a chain reaction in at least €50 trillion if not €100+ trillion in trades at the large banks/ financial institutions.

    Again, and I cannot stress this enough: when Spain defaults (and it will) the system will experience a collateral crunch that will be exponentially higher than that which occurred following the Lehman bankruptcy.

    This is why I’ve been warning that the 2008 was just a warm-up. It’s why the Powers That Be in Europe are absolutely terrified of what’s happening there. And it’s why those investors who do not prepare in advance for what’s coming will lose everything.

    If you do not want to be one of them, you need to get moving.

    The reality is that the Central Banks are fast losing their grip on the markets. They’ll never admit this publicly, but I can assure you that Bernanke and pals are scared stiff by what’s happening in the banking system right now.

    The Fed Will Lose Control of the System

    Extracted from Phoenix Capital essay

  41. Clare Leonard

    Small section of Direct Democracy Ireland launch.

  42. gizzy

    Governemnt losing control. When you turn the poice on your own citizens the end is nigh

  43. bonbon

    Look at the mentality we face when real economics is the issue :

    Bloomberg Dismisses Quinn Emergency Plan for New York, Whines “I Don’t Know Where the Money Would Come From”

    In the wake of devastation from Superstorm Sandy, New York City council speaker Christine Quinn proposed a … plan to protect New Yorkers from future storms. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, however, was quick to shut the plan down.

    The New York Daily News reports on the plan that Quinn outlined on Tuesday while speaking before the Association for a Better New York. The $20 billion plan, which Quinn wants to see feds fund, calls for the relocating of power lines underground, storm barriers, and more emergency provisions.

    The quick dismissal may have come as a shock to Quinn as Mayor Bloomberg has always been a loud supporter of Quinn and her potential mayoral candidacy.

    Just hours after Quinn presenting her ideas, Mayor Bloomberg said, “I don’t know where the money would come from.”

    “It would take billions and billions of dollars,” Bloomberg continued. “Before the federal government would get involved, you’d be doing it from the Florida Keys to the northern edge of Maine … People just can’t do that.”

    This shows the extreme danger of concentrating on that mesmerizing monetary dazzle whether gold or paper. That very catatonic paralysis is blocking urgent Reconstruction which is the real issue after all.

    • Tony Brogan

      This shows the extreme danger of concentrating on that mesmerizing monetary dazzle whether gold or paper. That very catatonic paralysis is blocking urgent Reconstruction which is the real issue after all.

      What rubbish bon bon.

      • bonbon

        Obviously Bloomberg is a “fiat” character – reconstruction not allowed. Goldbugs are exactly the same which shows the smoke and mirrors of the entire monetary swindle.

        • whatamess

          Goldbugs are not exactly the same in fairness Bonbon.

          when i was a teenager, i had bad acne and used TCP Sudocrem and lotsa other ointments and potions to rid me of these offending spots…Then it was suggested to me that i was cleaning from the ‘outside in’ using such creams and a more prolific strategy would be to clean from the ‘inside out’ by drinking alot more water and having a better diet …The inside out option worked best of course

          Tony Brogan is correct is saying that it’s perfectly logical to save in gold or silver as all currencies are heading south and rapidly so.No grey area for me there.I’ve bought gold and silver on TB’s suggestion and told my friends to do so.

          There is a frustration tho’ of thinking that gold will save the day ,as it certainly won’t.Tony’s not saying it will save the day ,but a sound strategy would be to have one’s $20k of savings in gold rather than having 20k of paper money under your mattress or in a bank.I agree fully and i suspect Bonbon does too.

          Bonbon is also perfectly correct regarding “Real economic value, a platform with an increased productive power of labor, energy intensive, with the associated dense infrastructure, health, education, is what the world is all about.” and “Increasing the productive power of labour with energy intensity is a principle. The relative potential population density of an economic platform is another. Economics does NOT spring from money ” – That’s cleaning from the inside out and where our macro focus ought to be…i.e everything else ought to fall into place and has the potential to fall into place if maga projects were heavily invested in.people back to work in huge numbers and projects we could feed from for decades.
          So Bonbon’s “One of those beliefs in capital, matter, as having an economic value, when advancing productive power has REAL value. One is solid metal, the other a knowable principle of economics” is not ” a pile” in fairness Tony.

          • Tony Brogan

            I have often tried to engage in a rational discussion with bon bon but to a singular lack of response. His responses are too often not addressed to the issue or subject.
            I take your point above to a degree, that there are some rational points to be found. but in as much as he disses rather than debates I am inclined to dismiss, rightly or wrongly most of his comments as I have not the time or energy to sort through for the good bits found amoug the junk.

            Thanks for your valid thoughts whatamess.

  44. bonbon

    I wonder if our Indian visitors are aware that Jawaharlal Nehru later said that his policy for Indian independence of swodeshi (boycott of British goods and development of Indian production) was based on his observation of Sinn Fein when Nehru lived in London as a graduate student.

  45. whatamess

    cheers kenlee2409 …very interesting !

    ive posted here a few times about Kyle Bass ..if you haven’t youtube him…

  46. whatamess

    if you havent seen kyle bass speaking that is

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