March 24, 2014

The game changer

Posted in Banks · 56 comments ·
Share 

This week the diminutive Janet Yellen, by far and away the most powerful woman in the world, sent the macho and male-dominated financial markets into a hissy fit when she mused aloud that she may raise US interest rates early next year.

The new head of the Federal Reserve is different. In putting a potential date on economic policy changes she patently wasn’t playing the game.

The game between the Federal Reserve and the world’s financial markets has always been one that would be fairly familiar to someone from the North. Up the North, when anyone asks, “What part of Belfast are you from?” or “What school did you go to?” or whether “Yer man’s name is Mervyn or Seamus”, all is known, but never directly asked and never pinpointed exactly.

Sometimes the structure of an initial conversation in the North amounts to a weird ethnic GPS system – everyone plugs in the cultural coordinates and in no time, you’re home and dry without ever asking the question directly.

In his brilliant poem ‘Whatever you say, say nothing’, the late Seamus Heaney, summed up this form of communication and inquisition brilliantly. (It’s well worth watching his 1999 reading of the poem on Channel 4 News). As someone who is married to a Northerner, I can vouch for this strange form of relentless sectarian data mining.

The ethnic GPS approach to conversation is a form of communication whereby we all know more or less what is being said, and who is saying what about whom – but we can never be direct about it.

In central banking there is a similar game that goes on between the financial markets and the central bank. (In fact, come to think about it, Seamus Heaney on the strength of that poem would have made a brilliant central banker!)

For years the central banker skirted around the issue, offering signs and smoke-signals, but never quite nailing his actual intentions. The financial markets plugged these hints, nods and winks into their economic GPS to come up with a route map spelling out where the stock-market or gold or bonds were likely to go.

Indeed, my own time in central banking was one large exercise in knowing stuff, but never saying it clearly. In this Delphic world, my former boss, the then governor of the Irish Central Bank once told me, “You wouldn’t want to explain that too much . . . for fear of frightening the horses.”

The expression ‘frightening the horses’ comes from the trial of that other giant of Irish literature, Oscar Wilde, and also involves another Irish Nobel prizewinner, George Bernard Shaw. During Wilde’s trial in 1895 when Victorian Britain was up in arms against gay men, a society actress, Mrs Pat Campbell, was asked by some Victorian prudes about what it is ‘those gay men do.’ She responded calmly, “I don’t care what affectionate people do, so long as they didn’t do it in the street and frighten the horses.”

The tolerant Campbell went on to be the first actress to play Eliza Doolittle, in George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion.

Frightening the horses implies offering too much information either in word or deed.

This week, Janet Yellen, in what I regard as a refreshingly honest Federal Reserve testimony, frightened the horses, and revealed too much about the Fed’s thought and deed.

Maybe Yellen could have entered the Heaneyesque world of nods and winks at her press conference, but she didn’t bother. She spoke openly and said she thought she would raise US interest rates in March next year. The horses scattered all over the pen and the markets sold bonds and stocks aggressively.

There was much talk about whether Yellen meant to mention March, or whether it was a slip of the tongue. But I think financial markets who have spent the past two decades being weaned on the mother’s milk of cheap interest rates, QE and other schemes – which link the fortunes of Wall Street to the Federal Reserve – do not yet understand that they are dealing with a different type of central banker in Yellen. She meant what she says.

In the same way as Seamus Heaney comes from a tradition, so do all of us. That goes for Janet Yellen too. Sometimes, these echoes of those who went before us are very strong, and can be deep inside us without us even knowing – as if someone is whispering to us.

Yellen comes from a long and noble tradition of left-leaning, originally eastern European, Jewish intellectuals who are deeply concerned, as their parents and grandparents were, with social justice and inequality. In short, she is more interested in civil rights issues than rights issues – and Wall Street better get used to that.

In America there is a long tradition of Jewish thinkers being on the progressive Left, at the forefront of the civil rights movement, defending unpopular causes and fighting for gender equality – from Bob Dylan, to Betty Friedan and Alan Dershowitz.

Even now, 80 per cent of American Jewish people vote for the Democratic party. Yellen and her husband, the Nobel prize winner George Akerlof, are from this central European leftist tradition, as too is Paul Krugman and Jeffrey Sachs and many, many others.

For these economists the point of a successful economy is not to keep Wall Street rich, but to create a society that is more equal, where people have a chance and where wages are higher and unemployment as low as possible.

In many ways, Janet Yellen is to the bull market of 2014 what the former Federal reserve chairman, the patrician Paul Volcker was to the 1981 bear market.

It is not that she doesn’t care about Wall Street and financial markets, but their reactions are not her primary concern and therefore, rather than play the game of Delphic nudges and winks, she calls it straight. Her message to the wolves of Wall Street, is something like: ‘Here is what I think, you guys go and figure out what that means to you.’

I sense that she is against QE because it makes rich people rich and exacerbates inequality. She will tell Wall Street what she is going to do, and as far as she is concerned whether the horses decide to be frightened or stay calm in response to her actions is really up to them.

Now this is a change and may go someway to undermining the Wall Street/Washington corridor which has dominated American policy making since Bill Clinton and his chief economic guru Bob Rubin dismantled Roosevelt’s 1930s banking regulation in the 1990s.

Come to think of it, Janet Yellen may well turn out to be more Bob Dylan than Bob Rubin, and that would constitute a proper transformation at the top in America.

 

David McWilliams writes daily on international economics and finance at www.globalmacro360.com

Subscribe to receive my news and articles direct to your inbox

 


    • SeeTheTrees

      “don’t frighten the horses”

      Perhaps “fool the sheeple” is more appropriate.

      David, the views in this article are very deeply immersed in main stream media MSM speak.

      Partly spin, some propaganda, with the occasional flat out lie.

      The truth about QE, tapering and the current US interest rate policy is very far from the illusions painted here.

      Also from the comments below, I sadly see a very poor understanding of what “actually” is happening with US monetary policy.

      Yes. Tapering is happening. But this is the front door QE money printing. There are other mechanisms by which the fed is currently monetising it’s own debt. Look at their balance sheet and how is changes monthly and quarterly. Probably still doing 100Billion a month of “buy your own debt” or equivalents.

      the truth is there is a real financial war going on now.

      Foreign holdings of US treasury debt is at a 10 year low. Foreign soverigns and cooprporates are dumpimg US debt.

      So if QE is really happening then the question is who is buying the debt?

      Interesting. Check out Fed Bank of NY. How about Belgium!

      Hmmm.

      Yes. belgium bought 60billion in last published NY Fed accounts. Wow.

      Or does that entry really mean ECB. Yes. The ECB. You see there is a “circle jerk” going on between the Fed, ECB and JCB, each taking turns to buy each others debt with newly printed money.

      Amazing. The game is up.

      Does anybody here know what the Exchange Stabilisation Fund (ESF) is. Well this is the most powerful financial institution in the world that controls, well, everything.

      I wont say anymore. Do your own research.

      So Yellen taper talk and the “interest rate hike” verbage is just that. verbage which interestly coincides with a sustained period of dollar weakness, Crimea and emerging market currency volatility, which helps create a short-term flight to “safety” in the dollar.

      The fed can taper front door purchases, but must replace them with further back door purchases. Interest rates will not rise because the US canot service its debt if interest rates rise. Currently 26% of current US Gov revenues go to pay interest on the this debt.

      What will happen will be that the ESF continues managing interest rates and world currencies with their financial derivative control matrix of interstes rate swaps and forward rate agreements, money printing every where, MSM propaganda about deflation so the CB’s can print money to “save the sheeple” and resulting in the eventual destruction of currencies……..

      but please “dont frigthen the horses”

  1. atchman

    “social justice and inequality”

    Would love to think you are right, sadly for the ordinary people of America and the rest of the globe I think you are not.

  2. Reality Check

    Why are my comments being blocked?

  3. Reality Check. Nothing is blocked. It just takes time to go through! What you think this is Turkey and Twitter?

    D

  4. michaelcoughlan

    Hi,

    A superb and very weighty piece. The thought occured to me when reading this in the SBP that there are manny in the Knesset who could take lessons from this Lady on how to be a top end exponent of the Jewish faith.

    It appears that Janet Yellen is doing what no one thought would happen which is putting American Citzens first and rewarding savers rather than speculators. If she continues with this policy wouldn’t it be great if she could shift the US from being a borrow and spend economy to a save and spend economy like Germany. I said a prayer that this Lady does not get killed for doing the right thing and also gave thanks that two of the most powerful positions in the world which are the chair of the US Fed and the German Chancellor are both occupied by women.

    Max Keiser had said that America would INCREASE QE or default but know we see Tapering. No one has a monopoly on knowledge.

    Michael.

  5. Draghi is Yellen to Mattie McGrath stating that Ireland has benefited from the ‘eurosyetem’ and has been extraordinary in recent years and that Irish Banks have ‘outstanding issues’ ../ ….a higher interest rate will make those outstanding issues ….more outstanding …how better does it become ?

  6. ps200306

    I don’t know anything about Janet Yellen but if she’s from the same stable of Jewish intellectualism as Betty Friedan or Naomi Klein, I doubt if I’d share her views on what constitutes equality. In fact, I’d be rather worried for the planet.

  7. Pat Flannery

    Here is a link to Yellen’s full speech:

    http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2014/03/19/janet-yellens-first-fomc-statement-annotated/

    David quoted from it: “She spoke openly and said she thought she would raise US interest rates in March next year.”

    Forgive me David but where did she say that? Am I missing it somewhere?

  8. douglaskastle

    I have a reputation for being blunt, I usually say what I think with a very short filter, not a good thing to do in Ireland, gets me in a lot of trouble if I am honest. I find that I have had to live by this quote a lot:

    “It has always been the prerogative of children and half-wits to point out that the emperor has no clothes. But the half-wit remains a half-wit, and the emperor remains an emperor.”

    but it looks like in Janet Yellan’s case, she do do more than talk, she can stop QE so I guess we’ll see.

  9. ‘ the diminutive Janet Yellen’….old desert saying .’.he ( she) who is nearest to the snake …fear the most’ …….just do not tell the wife .

  10. Adelaide

    Janet Yellen may well mean what she said but there is not a snowball’s chance in hell her intentions will come to fruition. Reality will overturn her intentions to a U-Turn, expect Janet Yellen to increase QE and lower interest rates. I hope though she does have conviction because it will make for very interesting times sooner than we expected.

    • Pat Flannery

      Adelaide: we are not even sure she said what David has attributed to her, raising US interest rates in March next year. I have not been able to find such a statement from her and David has not got back to defending his quote.

      I agree with you that she is a prisoner of Wall Street, like everybody else in Washington, contrary to what David believes. He seems to think she is a nice Jewish intellectual, more concerned with social justice and inequality than with Wall Street profits. She wouldn’t be Fed Chair if David was right, the Wall Street Jews would make sure of that.

      • Adelaide

        Hi Pat
        Yep, you’re correct. I’ve watched three appraisals of Janet Yellen’s testimony and none of the commentators mention David’s “March”. Their view was that she was bland, more-of-the-same, predictable Bernanke-mark-2. Where’s David getting this “March” from?

        • Adelaide

          Peter Schiff.
          “Janet Yellen will taper the taper.”
          Now that’s poetic!

        • Pat Flannery

          Adelaide, it’s after midnight over there right now so I am hoping David will come up on the site in the morning and explain where he got “next March” or any other date from.

          I am not trying to catch him out, I actually hope he is right, but I very much doubt it. America and the markets are hopelessly hooked on low or no interest rates. Nobody knows how to break the present cycle, no matter how well intentioned. I wish David would put his many talents to work on breaking this international financial death-spiral centered on Wall Street.

          • Adelaide

            Pat, it seems to have been an off-the-record remark she may or may not have said. Not official, that’s for sure.

      • 28pages

        well what David did in fact say: “..refreshingly honest Federal Reserve testimony..She meant what she says”

        i’m just astonished at our hosts naivety,if that’s indeed what it is?!

        Serfs will have ‘ownership’ of worthless derivative toilet paper, but bought at full face value ( thanks to toxic mix of TARP ,Operation Twist and QE and all other shadow criminal banking ) unceremoniously rammed down their throats, like it or not ! And moar pico-second HFT will continue and the sheep and their great grandchildren will pay, some with their lives and the Yellens of this world have not, do not ,and will not care one whit !

        Yellen’s words are just more opaque verbiage.She is just a provocatrix for the banking elite,empire. QE WILL continue to prop up the defunct TBTF banks and MSM’s (owned by TBTB) role is to mislead us all.Sorry, i aint buying any more bullsh*t !!

        “The FED has a choice, to save the bankrupt banks or save the dollar[and with now real threats to world reserve currency (yuan,renminbi)on the horizon at least]but she cant do both?! Yellen isn’t Neo!”

        So ZIRP forever as the broken beyond repair economic model MUST keep interest rates close to zero or face recession or worse.So this mar dhea tapering will be untapered (maybe due to the weather,who knows)and with QE spigots wide open,its print baby print!The bankrupt FED is the backstop and the markets know this…c’mon!

        insolvent banks, bond bubbles, housing bubbles, and a highly levered $14 Quadrillion derivative market heading for the heliosphere! Toxic asset purchases will continue as will bailins ,especially while global growth is pitifully weak or stagnant.. the ponzi will prevail or bond and equity bubbles will pop and that they wont allow happen ,voluntarily at least!

        If the Russians and Chinese are indeed (or have already?!) dumping/liquidating US treasury bonds/securities, then in the shadows, the rats are pondering the imponderables!And if you think that old yeller ,a rabid Alpha female is in anyway less calculating and vicious as an Alpha male, think again! She will eat your pups and lick her lips!

        What lovely big teeth you have Grandma Yellen, is weaving us all a scarf of subterfuge,deceit and silk threads of sophistry.and btw, “In the course of February, the Fed’s monetary base expanded by a whopping $104.8 billion, the third-largest monthly increase since the beginning of its asset purchases”
        http://www.cnbc.com/id/101497635

        So don’t piss down my back and tell me it’s raining!

        Mizaru, Kikazaru and Iwazaru

        which one are you David? or is it all 3 ? im beginning to wonder!

        Dump serfdom and split the banks before it’s too late

        • Adelaide

          Peter Schiff.
          “Yellen was instrumental in Benanke’s Bubble which will likely blow up on Yellen’s watch. Before that happens she’ll fake surprise, fake an excuse to increase QE, she KNOWS all along she will have to ramp up the presses to save the dollar, and at that point they will lose all remaining credibility and I expect the dollar then to hit the floor.”

          • Next March 20 th…..is a Total Full Eclipse ….in a Blood Moon …and she is a Jew …and it is in her scriptures .

          • cooldude

            Yellen will represent the interests of the shareholders of the Federal Reserve Bank and they are the large commercial banks who draw a 6% dividend every year for the privelege of creating the debt based US dollar. This is all simple fact and David is being beyond naive to believe that she will put the interests of the real economy above the interests of the banks. If she did she would be turfed out very smartly.

            The dual mandate of the Fed when it was created 100 years ago was to protect the dollar and to keep unemployment low. This was their official mandate although all they have ever done is protect the interests of their shareholders. Well the dollar has lost 97% of it’s purchasing power over this period and unemployment, particularly for full time well paid jobs, is constantly rising. In Feb the amount of 27 weeks or longer unemployed increased by over 200,000. Hardly a statistic for any sort of recovery. More like a statistic of failure which the Fed has been since it’s conception. The only area it has been successful in is in creating the never ending asset bubbles through it’s excess liquidity one of which we are now right in the middle of with the tech bubble at the moment. The valuation of whatsapp by facebook is every bit as crazy as any of the lunatic stuff of the late 1990″s. This is a bubble pure and simple and none of these economists are even looking for it.

            In summary Yellen will do as she is told and represent the interests of the banks to the detriment of all other sectors of the economy. The real debate should how do we get rid of these privately owned central banks and take back the franchise of money creation off these failed institutions.

  11. Stiofan

    “I sense that she is against QE because it makes rich people rich and exacerbates inequality.” …. Dear David, being against QE is similar to being against Ireland in the Euro. We are in it. QE happened. It’s all in the past. The question now is how to address the mess. Yellen has as much chance as nobody of draining away the massive liquidity created since 2008. The tsunami of QE is permanent and I suspect she’ll attempt nothing, her egalitarian proclivities being irrelevant in any case.

  12. HenryJames

    My question is, what happens if interest rates go up? And go up by how much? As someone who cound never afford a mortgage-resorted to saving- I would assume that it would be in my interest to see ‘historically high’ interest rates?too much to hope for?

  13. Keynesian Phillips-Curve Disciple, or more bluntly….dovish

    Contrary to hawkish, Yellen is a dove, notwithstanding her intellectual background, she can apply hawkish policies of course.

    When QE ends, the FED will own bonds worth 22% of GDP.

    Essentially, the US are bust, the EU is bust too.

    We found another one totally bust, the Ukraine, and pump billions into that bottomless pit as well now. Rightwingers at the helm? Who cares, social democrats don’t hesitate sitting at the same table with Svoboda leaders. What a picture that was!

    EU jabbers about sanctions, parroting US foreign policy, kicking Russia out of G8, but hey, who needs a G8 to begin with, it is a rather risible club of wasters.

    Along comes TAFTA.

    So on the one hand, we have the “freedom loving world” of peaceful US and EU interests, and on the other the Russian / Chinese, yeah well what? How about “Axis of evil” perhaps?

    The rhetorical tough talk serving the media in EU and US is nauseating.

    Expanisonist EU game plans where a major aspect in the Russian move to take over the crimea. At the same time a little Cicero may be useful to remember, a $ 14 Quadrillion damocles derivative sword hanging over us as a reminder that peace and happiness is fragile in deed.

    The usual vodoo priests of economics shovel their commentary into the media with their endless appetite for sensationalist headlines and sound bites.

    I feel sorry for the average Ukrainean who might believe joining the EU is a good thing, to get rid of corruption. You are only joining another club of corrupt leaders, in this case you join the EU voodoo economic club, and it’s mantra will be Austerity for you coming down the pipe.

    Joining the EU is a good thing for some Ukraineans, chocolate billionairs, the rich and super rich, signing trade agreements, shaking hands with western social democrats, for the rest, the majority, it will be Austerity and debt enslavement.

  14. http://www.jsmineset.com/2014/03/24/chair-yellen-to-get-a-shock-of-a-lifetime-in-the-next-few-months/

    “The only asset to survive and appreciate in the period of the great leveling now in progress in the West is Gold. That is understood at a level of POLICY here in the East. Gold is not being bought here in the physical market as an investment decision but rather as a policy decision. It is clearly understood that gold is for saving and not for speculation as the eventual failure of the paper gold market will prove.

    As we move out of the Great Leveling 2016 into the Great Reset of 2020 gold will have preserved the buying power of those courageous enough to hold and when possible add to their positions. Companies holding gold free of the tentacles of the West will prosper accordingly.”-Jim Sinclair

    As educated and bright a person as David to espouse such opinion means one of two things.
    either he has not done research or he is a mouthpiece for the establishment.
    Either way he miss-educates the people.
    As such he is a part of the problem and not a part of the solution.

    I am relieved to see some on the blog disputing Davids positions and it happens with more and more regularity.
    Yet he refuses to take note or debate the issues.
    I conclude it is deliberate policy for him to misinform. After all he is a central banker and central banking is the root of our problem as they control the issuance of our currencies that are enslaving and binding the people to servitude.

  15. “Items we “need versus want,” of course, will continue to rise in price until the fiat regime inevitably collapses. To that end, I just received my new homeowners’ insurance quote for 2014 – up 21% from last year’s level, and 110% from when we bought our house seven years ago. However, the expanding recession will continue to eat away at prices of everything else, putting thousands of companies out of business; yielding expanded layoffs, increased demand for government entitlements, and reduced government tax revenues – in turn, yielding expanded deficits, increased borrowing needs, and ultimately, more QE to fund such largesse.”–Andy Hoffman

    http://blog.milesfranklin.com/golden-life-preserver-in-a-sea-of-lies

  16. Add to above
    And again, we cannot emphasize enough that such issues are global; with perhaps the worst of all worlds currently unfolding in Europe. With record unemployment, exploding debts and expanding civil unrest, it’s only a matter of time before the ECB launches the long-awaited OMT, or Outright Monetary Transaction, QE program. This event will be matched in desperation only by the inevitable expansion of Abenomics – likely this summer, after the national sales tax increase obliterates what’s left of the Japanese economy; and ultimately, the initiation of “Yellenomics” here in the States, when the last vestiges of hope of a sustainable “recovery” die – potentially, in the second half of 2014.

  17. Deco, if you are there, you were talking about the $19 billion Facebook purchase of WhatsApp, on the last article.

    Now, King Digital Entertainment, creators of Candy Crush are supposedly going to raise $5 billion on the New York Stock Exchange when they float.

    This is just bananas stuff.

  18. So negative interest rates on the horizon for ECB together with debt monetization to the tune of 60 billion a month or more just like the good old USA.

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/finance/ambroseevans-pritchard/100026946/monks-recant-bundesbank-opens-the-door-to-qe-blitz/

    Twenty years ago when mortgage rates were 10.5 -12% I proffered the opinion that the total debt scenario would result in negative interest rates as we go poof to extinction with this monetary system. Did not think it would take 25 years though.
    They will charge to deposit and pay you to borrow. Money is worth nothing. Fiat that is. Get land and gold.
    Don’t yell at me for being right.
    HA HA have a great day.

  19. And no Yellin at me either.

  20. competitive devaluation urged for Britain. That should increase debt and lower interest rates.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/currency/10716848/Devalue-pound-to-boost-economy-says-JML-founder.html

  21. China unloads US dollars for gold. Plus China has stopped buying US debt.
    This will devalue US dollars. another facet of competitive currency devaluations.

    http://kingworldnews.com/kingworldnews/KWN_DailyWeb/Entries/2014/3/22_Maguire_-_Goldman_%26_Media_Full_Of_Shit_When_It_Comes_To_Gold.html

  22. “Russian President Vladimir Putin warned earlier this month that sanctions against Russia threatened to cause mutual damage in the modern, integrated global economy.”

    http://en.ria.ru/business/20140321/188628529/Visa-Mastercard-Freeze-Customer-Cards-at-Russian-Bank.html

    Russia can wreck the US economy by dumping US treasuries and hold Europe hostage by withholding oil and gas.

    no amount of diminutive Yellin can alter that.

  23. I guess Mr. bonbon and his buddies achieved their aim in the end by seriously inhibiting debate on this site.

    They are most likely off trolling elsewhere now.

    Oh well, life goes on.

    • Dorothy Jones

      Nothing like another gold troll to fill the gap

    • Adam
      Ask David to examine the question of money.
      Examine who controls the money supply
      Examine why the money is issued as a debt.
      Examine why it is a monopoly mandated by government.
      Examine what is bad money.
      What is good money and why.
      Advocate a return to sound money
      Advocate the disposal of the fiat debt money
      Show how most of the taxes would be unnecessary with interest free, debt free money.
      Show how this would liberate and free the economy.

      No he will not , Adam as he is a central banker and trained to think that way
      He also expounds on the social conscience of the Jewish Yellin and how this will provide social equality.
      How does he explain the jewishness of Benandke , Geithner, and the reinue at goldman Sach etc and the fact that it is largely Jews who control the central banking system and the BIS etc.

      People are not responding to this blog Adam as there is no hope of a solution from here. just opinion masquerading as science, and economic theory. Tittle tattle around the edges but nothing of substance.
      Any thinking person, well informed, is long gone.

      Have a great day Adam.

      • StephenKenny

        The problem with the sound money argument, as far as most people seem to be concerned, is simply that it all seems too esoteric, too academic. People have money in their pockets that do the job when they walk into a shop, they have balances in the bank which do the job when the card goes into the cash machine.
        When someone questions them about it’s real value, they say it’s backed by the Government, just like so many other things are – everything that requires a law and a court is sort of “backed by the government”.

        The sound money school has been banging away ever since Nixon in ’71, and does anyone seriously believe that these hugely powerful entrenched systems, backed four-square by an all pervasive media, is going to give up control of the main global economies?

        I would think that people are giving up the fight, not because they believe in this argument or that argument, but because they no longer think they things will be fixed: The people who caused 2007/8 are even more leveraged; they have even more power in Washington and London; having been given hundreds of billions by the taxpayer they are channelling it into their own pockets; and so on and so on.

        Terrible, fraudulent, and breathtakingly corrupt, things were done, on a scale that we’d not seen before, and those that did it were heaped with rewards and honours, and their destructive systems were effectively set in stone as templates for the future financial sector. As I say, I think people on this blog just gave up and walked away. It’s all too incredible.

        • Pat Flannery

          Thanks for that Stephen. I still think David’s site could be a good forum for serious economic debate. I hope the best contributors do not walk away.

          Because David rules it with a light touch it was used for too long for one-note rants. Bonbon was one of those and almost drove me away. I’m glad he is gone.

          Tony Brogan, whom I think Adam is referring to, could be a good contributor if he would just not replace Bonbon as a one-note wonder.

          • And what note would that be you discern from the symphony I present?

            I remark that you are stimulate to respond to Stephen, with whom I largely have agreement of thought.

            He in turn is replying to my post.

            In what regard was Adam allegedly referring to me.

          • No, I wasn’t referring to Tony actually Pat.

            Just Mr. bonbon and his minions.

  24. Pat Flannery

    Adam and Tony: I was speaking to the basic issue raised by you Adam: what is it that is “seriously inhibiting debate on this site”.

    The problem appears to me to be that people like bonbon and Tony continually use the site to hammer away at their favorite gripe, the repeal of Glass-Segal in the case of bonbon and the lack of sound money in the case of Tony. IMO that is what is driving people away.

    I hope that clarification helps.

    • To compare me with Bonbon is ludicrous.
      I do not jump in to everyone elses thread as did he.
      I make my own posts which you can ignore or otherwise.
      The posts vary in topic matter.
      The current money system is the issue that all ignore including you. It is the fundamental problem that is at the root of our indebted destruction.

      All else is treating the symptoms only. Poor practice and no solution.
      Others on this site agree with this position and post accordingly. I am not the problem of lack of participation.

      The problem is the lack of any presentation by our host as to a way out of the current problems. No solutions are offered or debated. People despair of any help here and go on about their own survival business.

      The truth is that if David espoused anything along the lines I and others suggest he would lose his newspaper coverage and go out of business. His is a Faustian bargain. He dare not challenge the establishment. Thus the site withers.

  25. Pat Flannery

    Tony: you are right, you do not “jump in to everyone elses thread” as bonbon did. My only criticism of you is that you should respect DMW’s request that we keep our comments relevant to the subject he chooses. After all it is his site.

    I also agree with you that David is constrained by commercial considerations but I can forgive him for that as we all have to make a living. It is one of the fundamentals of economics :).

    The fact that I do not respond to the issues you raise (“The current money system is the issue that all ignore including you”) is because I respect David’s request to keep our discussion roughly on the topic he chooses each time (however urgent the problem of the current money system may be, upon which I happen to agree with you).

    Finally I (sadly) admit that people come here to read what David has to say not what comments you or I may add.

  26. Thanks Pat

    A lot of what you say makes sense.
    However I too am aware of the theme and only use my “hobby horse” if I can connect with the theme. One is able to do this more often than than I thought.
    however if there were more discussion on this topic then more would be educated to the reality and then there is a grater chance of getting something done about it.
    Silence on the matter is not a solution.

    Thanks for the chat Pat,

You must log in to post a comment.
× Hide comments