Half a Sixpence Or Wiggle Room Or Everything’s Small In America Or Discover The Power Of TV Advertising

When I first began writing about the Credit Crunch and its consequences  I said that the defining moment in this cycle will come when the decision is made to re-introduce aspects of the pre-Monetarist economic system to a greater or lesser extent.

 

I argued that the Credit Crunch was not a ‘natural’ crisis in the sense that it arose out of production and trade processes like previous crises in the last century. I described how the Credit Crunch was instead the consequence of the solution implemented to combat inflation and stagnation of the 1970’s. The Credit Crunch was the product of past medicine not contemporary illness.

 

Monetarism was created to cure the problem of inflation, specifically wage inflation, for once and for all. Effectively, it removed the possibility of workers being able to directly influence the economy through collective wage demands. From now on workers as a group would have to accept whatever was offered by the economy instead of visa versa.

 

This was achieved by a combination of suppressing trades unions, dismantling of work place legal rights and the introduction of truly large scale mass immigration. These had the effect of permanently altering the supply of labour available.

 

In tandem with supply side reforms to the labour market Monetarism advocated a move towards a mass credit economy and most crucially the introduction of democratised money through financialisation. This combination of measures in total produced a low-wage, low discretionary spend and low growth economy in the aftermath of the Credit Crunch.

 

To reiterate the point: In the sense that Monetarism was a planned attack on the post war political and economic settlement, the Credit Crunch that followed from it was entirely voluntary and entirely avoidable.

 

But if pundits are to be believed all this is to be overturned- or at least corrected to some extent in a kind of counter reformation to Monetarism. We are told that under Donald Trump America, (and Britain under the Brexit regime), will return to the old style ‘great again’ economy .

 

Inflation will arise from the dead and interest rates will lift in response. We are told that as part of this cycle of cause/effect, real wages will also begin seriously  rising after decades of stagnation.

 

I understand now that my initial analysis of the Credit Crunch was incorrect in that it did not take into account the significance of derivatives and the permanent effect they would have on the global economy. It was only after I began to write about the central bank response to the credit crunch in the form of  Quantitive Easing that I realised that derivatives were entirely novel in the effect they would have on structures within developed economies.

 

Derivatives are a new privately issued form of money. As such, they have colonised sections of global economic activity. As a consequence of this colonisation derivatives  permanently distort the total global economy to the extent that they are allowed to operate within it.

 

The mistake I initially made was not to realise that even if the old world was to some extent allowed to be re-introduced into the new world, it would not be on the same terms as previously. History is one way street. This brings us to the central theme of this piece which is the new shrunken environment into which Donald Trump will birth his new great America.

 

You will probably have heard  of ‘shrinkflation’ in which the packaging of a commodity remains more or less the same but the actual product within the package shrinks. For example look inside a bag of potato crisps and you find it will now be less than a third full- the bag is mostly air. A bar of Toblerone chocolate has famously shrunk to the size of the foothills of Wales instead of the mighty Alps it was supposed to represent.

 

In terms of commodities, the sound of the future seems to be a ‘capitalist rattle’ where shrunken products jiggle around in their oversized packaging. Something similar has happened in the world of politics producing ‘wiggle room’.

 

Wiggle room is the phenomena whereby it becomes increasingly difficult to attribute any given outcome to any particular cause. (See what I have written on the ‘Secret Economy’)

 

I have referred to sawing the lady in half on more than one occasion as a metaphor for the new politics and economics.The key to this trick is understanding that there is a lot more room in the box the lady goes into  than you might suppose. The wiggling fingers and the wiggling toes that you can see do not actually belong to the same person inside the box but instead to 2 separate people.

 

Something a lot like the sawn lady has recently been happening in the world of Anglo-Saxon politics and goes directly to the question of the nature of the new political movement that has given rise to both Brexit and the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States of America.

 

I have characterised this movement as Anglo Saxon nationalism as distinct from   those on the liberal left who regard it as a form of white nationalism with its concomitant implications of racism.

 

The standard Trumpist retort to accusations of racism has been to argue that the same public that elected Donald Trump is the same public that elected Barack Obama on two occasions previously. If these people were prepared to let Obama rule they can hardly be regarded as being racist –can they?

 

But this overlooks the fact that there is a large amount of ‘wiggle room’ within the American electorate. Only half the potential voters in America actually bother to turn out for elections generally and of that half, only half again actually voted for Donald Trump. Which means Trump was actually selected by a quarter of the electorate.

 

Following from this it is entirely possible that both Trump and Obama were actually elected by two more or less entirely separate and different constituencies that have enough spare room within the electorate to hardly overlap at all.

 

In other words it is entirely possible that the vast majority of those who voted for Trump would never in any circumstances vote for Obama or any other black man.  They are in large part an entirely different constituency from the liberals. If you look at the sawn lady’s wiggling fingers and then at her wiggling toes you might start to notice that they are a slightly different colour…

 

The same is equally true in the case of Brexit. Only around a quarter of the available population actually voted to leave the European Union. So the idea that the leave voters represent a disillusioned previously semi liberal strand of mainstream British society is at least questionable.

 

This ‘bagginess’, this loose fitting wiggle room system, is one that tends to lend itself to the performance of conjuring acts such as sawing the lady in half. Given that this is the case, it seems hardly remarkable, in fact entirely predictable, that such a system would attract a showman like Donald Trump.

 

I have described the electoral space that allows Trump and Brexit to rise to prominence. But underlying this there is an economic hollowing out that provides the basis of these political phenomena.

 

The creation of privately issued democratised money in the form of derivatives effectively gives us an economic version of two magician’s assistants within the same box. The wiggling toes and fingers that you see do not belong to the same body. That is why inflation and deflation, labour participation rates and unemployment, equity and bond prices all seem to be sending conflicting signals that we know simply can’t be possible in the real world.

 

If money can be described as an information signalling system then two forms of money privately issued and government issued, existing side-by-side and sending out coterminous signals can only result in increasing confusion.

 

Inflation signals or deflation signals, or growth signals or shrinkage signals are being sent out by either privately issued derivatives economy or the government issued general money economy. It is virtually impossible to say which is which. But the point is that this is not one information system but two systems existing side by side.

 

I have previously argued that the endpoint of this phase of democratised money will result in roughly half the worlds economy being colonised by derivatives. This is not a general guess, a number of pundits have previously indicated that the long term average interest is expected (required), to be 2 1/2 to 3 % .In consequence, Donald Trump’s claim to make America Great again can only really mean making half of America great again or America half great again.

 

In a world where half the economy is colonised by democratised money derivatives interest rates can only rise to half their potential maximum. By the same token real inflation can only rise to half its potential maximum. The state sponsored economy can only grow at half its potential rate at maximum. In other words, every and all  aspect of the system can only operate and exist at half the previous level if there is only half the economy  to operate within.

 

So when I say that resolution of the credit crunch crisis is dependent upon how much of the old world the elite is prepared to allow to re-emerge, from the perspective of democratised money, the maximum amount that can be allowed to emerge is 50%, if that is indeed the level at which derivatives will be allowed to colonise the world economy.

 

From this perspective it is possible to make some  specific predictions as to the numbers behind Trump’s make America great again strategy.

 

The long-term average underlying interest rate in the developed economies is around 5%. I have for a long time predicted that the long-term normative interest rate post credit crunch will be 2 1/2 to 3%.

 

From what I have said it  should also follow that the long-term average normative inflation rate will settle at around 1 1/2– 2 % and that the growth in GDP rate and  growth in employment rate should also settle at around half their historical real average in the post Credit Crunch world.

 

But they won’t of course, for the very straightforward reason that they are made up figures…

 

However there are a number of real life indicators that we can say will be restricted to half their previous level of growth under the half and half economy.

 

Growth in  life expectancy will be cut to half its post war average rate in the developed world.

 

Growth in home ownership will also be cut to half.

 

The average fall in the rate of poverty will also fall to half its previous post war average.

 

So now we know that Donald Trump is going to end up being round about half as frightening as the liberals thought he was going to be..

 

Extra Information

Theresa May is set to announce revolutionary social reform policies – this could be the moment she silences her critics

She insists that the state has a significant role to play in alleviating the everyday injustices faced by people who do not qualify for benefits. Announcing shiny new policies is the temptingly easy part of governing. Much more difficult is delivering the same

http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/theresa-may-speech-social-reforms-revolution-thatcher-brexit-critics-a7516156.html

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House Burning Down

 

It might be useful to consider further the relationship between the production of paper news and the production of paper money.

 

I observed that both paper money and paper news are forms of informational transaction. This might be more accurately described as  the transfer of meaning. In this sense ‘meaning’ is the value measurement of information; Meaning is the unit of value of information because meaning transforms data into information and makes it valuable. The construction of meaning is exactly the assigning of value to data.

 

Consider hyper inflation in the money supply . In the traditional monetarist model (the one that has more or less taken over all mainstream economics), this is caused by an oversupply of money into the market. In other words Monetarists argue that the problem of hyper inflation and inflation generally is one of quantity. Actually the problem is one of quality. We can show this with the following:

 

There is a direct relationship between publishing an edition of a newspaper and publishing an edition of money, which is effectively what is done each quarter when the interest rate is set. The interest rate is news about how things are going to be according to a central bank and money notes carry this news.

 

Money published at 0.5% base rate is a different edition of money from  that published at 1% base rate. Same ‘newspaper’, same publisher, but different news, different information, different headline.

 

Just as each particular edition  of a newspaper contains information specific to a particular time and place (as I mentioned last time), the paper money note also contains information. I will describe the nature of this information below but for now lets stick with newspapers.

 

In the example of a newspaper, let us say that the edition of January 6 has the headline: ‘War Is Declared!’. And the edition of January 7 has the headline that ‘Peace Is Declared!’. Taken in sequence the meaning of these events is clear.

 

First there is a state of war, then there is a state of peace and the present condition of affairs is that of peace.

 

Now imagine that the newspapers in question were not dated January 6 and January 7 so that there was no way of telling which was the first headline and which was the second. It could be the case that war is declared and then peace declared or it could be the case that peace is declared and then war is declared. So in the first instance we are now in a state of peace and in the second instance we are now in a state of war.

 

Now let us say that an unscrupulous news agent receives both editions of the undated newspaper from the publisher in correct order but chooses to release them to the local population in either one or the other order for his own personal advantage. If the local newsagent wants to promote the idea that we are at a state of war he will release the newspaper with a war headline second and if he wants to promote the idea that we are at peace he will release that newspaper second.

 

Just such an instance as this is described when  banker Nathan Rothschild famously withheld news of the British victory at Waterloo in order to take advantage of market uncertainty as to the outcome of the battle. By the time the markets received the news that Wellington had won,  Rothschild had bought equities at knock down prices  and made a killing on the rising market.

 

If the local population becomes aware of the possibility that news may be manipulated by a local newsagent for the purpose of controlling perceptions, they might hold on to one or more editions of a newspaper in order to compare headlines and get some idea of what the actual facts of the matter are in sequence.

 

 

Logically, in such a case the local population will have to conclude that NO particular edition of a newspaper is to be objectively trusted and that all editions are either wrong or lying. In other words the paper in its entirety is worthless rather than just this or that edition. This is the qualitive nature of the problem.

 

After all, how can two editions of the same newspaper with the same editor and the same journalists and with no differential date information be judged between? How can you know which is the truth NOW and which is not?  This is in effect what happens in the case of hyper inflation.

 

Think of a paper money note as a generalised abstracted unit of information. On a more sophisticated level we can think of a money note as a unit of evidence. We can say that one or more units of evidence goes up to make an argument and that therefore the more units of evidence you can muster in support of any particular argument the more likely you are to win that particular argument.

 

In a standard economic transaction the argument in question is that you should sell a car,(or any other commodity), to me for this number of paper notes. Or to put it another way, you should swap your car for this number of paper notes.

 

The more units of evidence that you can muster in support of this argument, i.e. the more paper notes that you offer in return for the car, the more likely you are to win that argument.

 

But there is an unfortunate corollary to this. If you win the ‘argument’; by offering more pieces of paper money evidence than the other guy, you also implicitly argue that each individual piece of paper money evidence is worth relatively less.

 

We can return to the practical consequences of this shortly but first, as I argued last time paper bank notes or units of evidence are introduced into the market at a particular time and particular place and at a particular price. So in this sense, they are first and foremost evidence in an argument on behalf of central government made to the general population.

 

The individual argument that paper money notes are evidence for is: ‘These pieces of paper are valuable to this or that extent not only in comparison with objects such as commodities, but those pieces of money paper that have gone before and those pieces of money paper that will come after’.

 

This is of crucial importance.

 

From this perspective the crisis point of hyper inflation occurs when too much information is presented at any one time which results in not a quantitive problem but a qualitive one.

 

Let us say that two purchasers are competing to buy a particular car. They both make the argument that you should swap the car for this number of pieces of paper money. The number of pieces of paper money is the totality of evidence that this or that exchange argument is true and valid.

 

Obviously they cannot offer the same number of pieces of paper as evidence/arguments or the seller will have no way of differentiating between the two. So let us say that Buyer A offers 100 money units and buyer B offers 110 money units. Buyer B wins the argument because he has offered more ‘evidence’ in support of his argument. So far so good.

 

But what if Buyer A offers 100 units as before but Buyer B offers 5000 units? What is the seller to make of that? These two arguments are wildly different, they containing wildly differing amounts of evidence in the form of money notes. (bear ‘fake news’ in mind at this point)

 

Well surely the answer is simple, the seller takes Buyer B’s offer.

 

Not so fast. Most sellers would want to know a little more about it before making a decision in these circumstances. The problem is the totality of evidence.

 

Instead of 210 units in total chasing the car,(both bids), which might be seen as reasonable there are 5100 units chasing the car which is not seen as reasonable given what the seller knows or thinks he knows. Something else is going on…

 

What if a third buyer comes along ten minutes later and offers 10,000 units for the same car? Now the seller will be pretty sure something is seriously going wrong. And the inevitable effect is that he will be forced to distrust all money notes in whatever amount because they are all the same.

 

If ten information money notes are worthless then 10,00 money notes are equally worthless, this is both the strength and weakness of the informational money system. The implication is that the seller  will be forced to distrust the overall message he is getting from the government. But it is a qualitive and not quantitive problem because it does not rely on amounts.

 

So what was that central bank/government message I referred to above? It is that ‘We are in charge and everything is all right’. That is the basic unit of money news implicit in every money note.

 

The second piece of money news is the interest rate, which is the price at which private banks buy money from the central bank. This can be understood as that particular headline for the quarter. But this piece of money news is intimately tied up with the distribution mechanism of the paper notes themselves.

 

A newspaper printing and distribution operation will have a central printing press, regional distribution warehouses and sub warehouses which distribute to newsagents and even paper sellers on the street.

 

Each element of the distribution chain decides how many papers to take and to move on down the chain of distribution according to how profitable they predict this process will be. This depends to a large extent on the nature of the headline. ‘Queen Dies!’ or ‘War Is Declared!’ will tend to sell more copies than ‘Water Supply Goes Off In Addis Ababa’ or whatever. (perhaps not in Ethiopia though..) So the headline affects and ultimately controls the distribution process.

 

The same is true with interest rates. Depending on what the Central Bank decides the interest rate will be, each element of the distribution chain, from the large commercial banks downwards decides how much of this edition of money they will take and distribute according to how profitable they calculate it to be.

 

But what is of the utmost importance to understand is that in the case of money news everyone in the chain acts like the unscrupulous news agent I described above. Everybody is encouraged to withhold editions of the news  and to release them onto the market only when it is in their individual best interests!

 

When you receive any particular edition of money, you either release it into the public by means of spending it or you withhold it by means of saving it. You manipulate the information contained in the note for your own best interests. That is what you are supposed to do- to lie, to spread disinformation.

 

Of course everybody is therefore equally dishonest and so no-one can point the finger at anyone else. The system is based upon everybody spreading corruption and lies. Wouldn’t such a system be inherently unstable and prone to periodic collapse?

 

You betcha!

 

Wouldn’t someone try to contain this corruption and tendency to collapse? Wouldn’t they try to devise a system to mitigate the problem?

 

Yes they would. They would take the logical step of trying to date and order the headlines on each edition so they could be read and understood in sequence. How would they do that?

 

By means of a code that can be read and understood by themselves but importantly, not by you. If you doubt this, take out a currency note and find the identifying  code printed on it, usually referred to as the serial number. Do you know what this code means? If you do not, why don’t you? After all it is supposed to be money issued by a democratically elected government in your name and for your benefit!

 

The purpose of this code is for the people who issued the notes to understand each ‘headline’ and the order it was issued in, but not for you, or anyone like you, to be able to.

 

The system is built on a small minority being able to fully understand the meaning of the money news and the vast majority below them taking part in a game of charades where they lie to each other and manipulate the news supply to each other for the purpose of individual advantage.

 

As a simple illustration of this suppose you had 500 units of currency  and you found out that this denomination of money would be abolished or worthless the next day. What would you do? You would try to go out and buy something with it wouldn’t you? You would try to use the information advantage that you had to pass the problem onto someone else. This is the key to inflation and hyperinflation.

 

We are building up a picture of a central money news/information agency that is issuing news on a regular basis. That news/information is then taken up by the various parts of a supply chain and manipulated and distorted in order to obtain the best possible individual outcome but with inevitable damage to the system as a whole. Assuming that he purpose of the system is to transmit information that is.

 

With this news information model in mind we can now go back to look at hyper inflation. The trouble with hyper inflation is that the seller has no way of knowing which is the most valued up to date piece of information on which to base his decision.

 

This problem presents itself as there being too many pieces of money information in circulation. Discrepancies between the amounts of money evidence offered in any particular argument (trade), force the seller  to increasingly regard all pieces of paper money as being equally invalid- hence the hyper inflation.

 

But the root of the problem here is not validity of any particular trade argument and the money evidence presented in support of it  but the equality between each and all pieces of evidence. Because of this money is actually only credible and valid within a relatively narrow and stable bank of circulation. The sameness of each piece of money information  requires sameness of prediction and sameness of outcome to work.

 

No matter how many paper notes are issued in any financial period they are all  of equal validity to  paper notes  issued  in another given quarter. In other words any episode of  inflationary money printing activity is absorbed into the whole of the financial system and is only ameliorated by later activity.

 

Just as any incorrect news report is absorbed into news production and distribution system as a whole. The system relies on its credibility to absorb the effects of any mistakes and keep people believing in the system even as they curse and dispute virtually all of the specific outcomes the system produces!

 

Since individual savers and consumers effectively act as newsagents, storing the information and only releasing it when it suits the particular interest of the moment, it is inevitable that conflicts of meaning and value will happen.

 

Hyper inflation is an insane babble of arguments that taken collectively can only mean that each individual argument is more or less worthless  since in the last analysis it is all the same argument, that we are in control and everything is alright.

 

Periodically the logic of worthlessness produced by exchanging paper money arguments is expressed by and through a significant number of news agents  going from one door to another  desperately seeking a way out as they sense the impending doom.

 

As the doors are increasingly closed to news hawkers selling bogus information  brands the volume of money seeking any  way out increases exponentially until an overwhelming tsunami of money at any and every exit guarantees it cannot escape. Think of it as a house besieged by fifty street newspaper sellers shouting:

 

‘Extra! Extra! Your House Is Burning Down!’

 

while the house owner cowers within.

 

Disaster.

 

In conclusion I will ask: Is there anything we could do to rectify this state of affairs?

 

And surprisingly perhaps, there is a very simple and very straightforward solution. To date and value stamp money. So that instead of being interchangeable all money is clearly given a value – a ‘sell by date’ at which time it becomes valueless.

 

The closer this expiry date comes, the less the exchange value of the money note. This would solve all the problems now associated with inflation hyper inflation and Monetarism then we could…

 

Oh wait a minute.

 

This form of money already exists. It is called a bond. It is what the banks themselves use when they are dealing with central banks.

 

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

LISTEN UP

 

If there is only one thing you take away from all this it should be:

 

THERE IS MORE THAN ONE FORM OF MONEY, THERE ALWAYS HAS BEEN. EACH MONEY FORM SERVES THE NEEDS OF ITS CREATORS. ANYONE CAN CREATE MONEY BECAUSE MONEY IS A COMMONS. MONEY IS A COMMONS BECAUSE IT IS NOT ANY PARTICULAR THING IT IS A FUNCTION- SOMETHING THAT AN OBJECT CAN BE MADE TO DO.

 

GOVERNMENTS MAKE MONEY FORMS TO CONTROL THEIR POPULATION. BANKS AND CORPORATIONS MAKE MONEY FORMS TO CONTROL THE PUBLIC. BITCOIN IS A METHOD OF CONTROLLING ANY SUCKER WHO BUYS INTO IT.

 

PRIVATELY ISSUED DEMOCRATISED MONEY IN THE FORM OF DERIVATIVES IS THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE ATTEMPT EVER DEVISED IN HISTORY TO CONTROL THE WORLD POPULATION DIRECTLY THROUGH THE PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION OF A NEW MONEY FORM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not Fake news but Flake News or RIP Tony the Tiger: You Were Grrrreat! | TMZ

 

The recent spat between alt right news outlet Breitbart and capitalist breakfast combine Kellogg is indicative of a new cultural media reality in the Saxon axis. (What a sentence!)

 

After Kellogg decided to pull its advertising spend from Breitbart citing ideological differences, Breitbart responded by ordering a boycott of Kellogg’s breakfast mush by its loyal followers..

 

In the first instance, it is clear that Kellogg’s decision to put ‘money where mouth ‘ is a straightforward illustration of one of the central principles of cultural constituencies;  that in the post free market world commerce follows culture and not the other way round (as free marketers and globalises tried to get you to you believe).

 

What is also interesting was the response of alt-right media organisation Breitbart  by trying to damage Kellogg’s commercial interests. This is an insight into an emergent secondary aspect of post capitalist economy; the subscription model I wrote about last time.

 

I noted that Saxon nationalist organisations in the media and elsewhere will increasingly demand that their subscribers, (as opposed to consumers or investors), actively avoid supporting organisations that do not adhere to their culture. In other words, if you are not with us then you are actively ‘agin’ us and therefore we are actively ‘agin’ you.

 

You can bet that this will spread to other cultural constituencies.

 

The relationship between sponsorship, power, influence and editorial control in capitalist media has long been the source of debate.

 

In developed capitalist societies it is generally accepted that in media there is a tension between the commercial imperatives of advertising and editorial control. It is accepted that advertisers are allowed to control or influence aspects of what is printed in a newspaper, transmitted on TV or radio  in order to maximise the revenue they can receive from advertising in that media. These are accepted parameters of capitalist control over media.

 

Offset against this is a supposed  ‘ethical’ professional code of journalists and editors which means that they are able to some extent to circumvent the commercial pressure to comply with corporate interest.

 

Increasingly this journalistic ethics code has come under pressure, not least from the  explosion of Internet-based alternative media outlets which means that there are now tens if not hundreds of thousands of ‘citizen journalists’ whose relationship to a supposed code of journalistic ethics is undefined.

 

And this changing relationship illuminates an analogy between  the production of news and the  production of money. Money production and distribution can be understood as a form of information dissemination just as news media is.

 

Traditionally newspapers are printed on paper and distributed in the same way that paper Government Issued Money is. The process is that a variety of information brands are delivered to the market to be taken up by different sections of the population at different times in different locations and at different prices.

 

So a certain section of society would buy broadsheets at a certain price and another section of society would by a tabloid title at another price and so on.  Each section of society is not just buying a different news FORMAT but a different news CONTENT. Yet despite this segmentation, the totality of what they are buying is defined as ‘The  News’. This implies that there is such a thing as ‘The News’ and various papers  print various bits of it.

 

The same can be said of traditional government issued money, (including GOVERNMENT SPONSORED MONEY such as bank credits). Currency notes, letters of bank credit etc are provided into the market as concrete paper documents which are then taken up by consumers according to price and availability.

 

Together the totality of different newspapers made up the press and together the totality of different forms of money made up the currency. The NEWS is the TOTALITY of the output of the PRESS. The ECONOMY is the totality of the OUTPUT of MONEY PRODUCERS.

 

Note that the totality of everything that happens on Earth is not the News. In fact the majority of stuff that happens on the Earth everyday is categorised as NOT newsworthy and not reported on. Likewise the totality of everything that happens on the earth is not the Economy. In fact the majority of human activity is NOT regarded as the economy and not counted as such.

 

Given the significance of the ‘News’ for controlling any given society it is inevitable that the state will become involved in its production and regulation.  In many cases, governments become directly involved in the production of news. State sponsored and controlled media organisations like the BBC are an example of this.

 

And it follows that given the significance of the economy in controlling any given society, government will be directly involved in the regulation and ultimately the production of money. In developed capitalist societies this is done by government sponsored private organisations like the Federal Reserve or the Bank of England which operate more or less on a BBC model of governmental control.

 

But if you are supposed to live in a free and open democracy you can hardly have the government clearly controlling what news you have access to . And if you live in a free market economy you can hardly have the government clearly controlling what money or economy you have access to.

 

It is this tension between the necessity of government control and the ideology of open and free that has shaped the relationship between the various elements in both media and economy in the capitalist world.

 

Now increasingly, news (as opposed to newspapers), is disseminated by electronic means. Given Marshall McLuhan’s  famous dictum that the ‘medium is the message’   the increasing pre-eminence of electronic media is transforming the way that news is disseminated and consumed. This affects what news is, who gets it and where and when they get it. And come to think of it, what they do with the news when they get it.

 

Digital news production means it is easier for ‘insurgent’ news outlets to appear because costs of production are rapidly falling. But distribution costs are NOT falling. This is extremely important and I will return to it later..

 

These developments in media  have  led to the emergence of powerful new media blocks that use the ideological rhetoric of the small producer but are in fact simply competitors to mainstream media. ‘Breitbart’ and ‘Infowars’ are two Saxon Nationalist examples of this.

 

This process parallels the rhetoric of Protestantism where a plethora of religious ‘start ups’ -the ‘SMRs’ , (Small to Medium Sized Religions), in the Reformation period was rapidly superseded by a relatively restricted number of larger competitors to the Catholic Church, which claimed they were from the ‘volk’ and of the ‘volk’.

 

Together with the effective collapse of the free market, electronic media has provided the medium for the emergence of cultural constituencies in the field of news .This gives rise to nascent culture, media and subscription wars.

 

It is not possible for these entirely private media conglomerates to provide news in the ‘public interest’. There can never actually be a free press, (in the real capitalist sense that it does not cost anything), under capitalism.  They have to find a way to monetise news production.

 

In this context the digital distribution service becomes increasingly more significant as an additional cost or barrier to access. (See above) Facebook and Twitter  are privately owned news distribution nodes and yet they are expected to act as a public interest conduit for privatised news production sources.

 

As such they are increasingly becoming the subject of territorial dispute. Are they entirely private? Do they have some kind of public interest mandate? Should they be state controlled in part or wholly?

 

This is the dynamic underpinning the debate about ‘fake news’. The ‘left’ wants some kind of government control on nodes like Facebook and Twitter in the  distribution network, the ‘right’ wants to use commercial pressure (boycotts etc), to control them.

 

This development process in the  media illuminates some of the outcomes that follow from the coming prevalence of electronic money (as opposed to the paper kind). Electronic money is of necessity privatised Democratised money in the same way that electronic news is of necessity privatised Democratised news.

 

I can confidently predict that just like the media the proliferation of small-scale digital money producers will  lead to the emergence of medium to large scale competitors to the mainstream money conglomerates. This has always been a fundamental part of the Crackernomics analysis.

 

As  electronic money is increasingly disseminated by electronic means it will affect what money is, who gets it and where and when they get it. And what they do with the money when they get it.

 

So lets draw some of the main strands of this argument together.

 

‘News’ is an abstract metaphysical concept derived from the concrete reality of news production. All the VALID news broadcasters and printers together in aggregate are said to produce the ‘News’.

 

But the concrete historical reality of news production is NEWSPAPERS which are then superseded by electronic media transmission (radio and television) which is in turn being replaced by electronic media.

 

Forget talking about ‘News’ as a metaphysical abstract. NEWSPAPERS were and are limited and defined by WHERE and HOW and WHEN they could be produced and distributed. (So are News transmissions and so are News (‘digitations’?)This specific combination of METHOD, TIME and PLACE defines what NEWSPAPERS were and are. NEWS is always a FUNCTION of METHOD, TIME and PLACE.

 

Here is a simple illustration. A bomb goes off in a city centre. The ‘news’ is that it is a terrorist attack. The news is gathered, processed, edited, printed and distributed in 12 hours. But by the time a customer buys the paper and receives the ‘news’, it turns out it wasn’t a terrorist attack, but a gas leak that caused the explosion.

 

So what is printed in the paper that the customer holds in his hand? Is it ‘News’ ? It can’t be News because it is not true! There is no metaphysical abstract news outside of the way it is produced and there never can be. Content is determined by form.

 

A concrete newspaper is concrete evidence of lying or making an error. (see 1984). News transmissions or digitations solve that problem. We have always been at war with Eastasia etc.

 

This is equally true for paper money. By the time that economic information is created, collected, processed by a central bank and turned into an interest rate that controls the production and distribution of Economy, the information in question may already be proved to be invalid! In fact it usually is….

 

So is the economy produced on the basis of that ‘counterfeit’ information money invalid?

 

The answer both in the case of News and Economy is that these are metaphysical abstracts that are accepted as both true and untrue at the same time. (Yet more Orwell)

 

The known facts and interpretation around any particular news event evolve over time. Interest rates and economic analysis evolve over time. Even though the MAJORITY of what is printed in the name of news and economy can be shown to have been wrong to a greater  or lesser extent, this does not diminish the overall faith in the concept of news and economy.

 

(Note: Paper money hyper inflation is when there are simply too many lies and bad guesses to hide. Note 2: Except in India where they have recently embarked on a wholesale destruction of the paper money evidence)

 

Or it didn’t till recently anyway.

 

But that was before the arrival of Fake News.

 

So what has changed then? What now makes some news providers ‘fake’ and some ‘genuine’? The question might more usefully framed as: What makes a particular news provider VALID OR INVALID?

 

And the answer might surprise you.

 

I have explained that NEWS does not exist in the ether as an abstract. It is the concrete result of the production of different news formats. The same way that NEWS does not exist outside of space it also does not exist outside of time.

 

‘News’ as we see it now is the result of a clear historical process. As I described above this process is intimately linked with the commercial interests of advertisers. And this in turn is intimately linked with the development of capitalism.

 

The ‘modern’ press did not begin in Africa or India or China. This is not a meaningless observation, it goes to the heart of what ‘Press’ and ‘News’ really is. We can see that  the ‘Press’ and ‘News’ is the product of German history and culture just as surely as Protestantism and Capitalism is.

 

Which brings us to the question of validity-not as some kind of abstract quality belonging to abstract ‘News’ argued about by differing interest groups, but as a concrete historical reality.

 

Papers that were published in the beginning of the News industry were the newspapers that received the investment necessary for obtaining news print, distribution and news gathering resources etc.

 

Investment was forthcoming on the basis that newspapers were a viable commercial venture. Newspapers were a viable commercial venture to the extent that they could obtain advertising revenue. They could abstain advertising revenue to the extent that they would comply with the needs and wishes of advertisers.

 

Simply put, traditional papers were valid to the extent they were given the blessing of commercial interests of advertisers.  And that is all. Everything else said about the historical press – all the rhetoric about freedom of speech etc- is just someone trying to blow smoke up your backside!

 

We can see the accuracy of this observation by considering attitudes to the non commercial press/media. Two good examples of this are RT, the Russian sponsored media outlet and the BBC.

 

Both RT and BBC are regarded with scepticism or outright mistrust by large sections of the public in developed economies. They are regarded as suspicious (as in fake news) because they are held to have an agenda which comes from their sponsors which are governments..

 

This agenda is held to be more overt and controlling and less trustworthy than the agenda imposed on commercial press/media outlets by their advertisers. But why should this be so?

 

Because as I said above there is an accepted degree of commercial control that is allowed from advertisers and offset against this is the supposed journalistic ethics that allow journalists to report despite commercial pressure. This capitalist Germanic concept is embedded in the history and the ideology of ‘News’.

 

Central to this cult ideology is the concept of plurality of advertisers which works like this: Advertisers sell products into society which has a variety of groupings and individuals that represent a spectrum of thought and opinion on various matters.

 

The more and varied the advertising corporations are, the more likely they are to represent a variety of opinion which is the supposed endpoint of democracy. The ideal advertising profile of a media organisation would be one that contains a wide variety of large mass producing corporations such as Kellogg.

 

These corporations then advertise in and validate any given media organisation. If the media organisation produces ‘News’ that is against the tastes of the wide and deep variety of consumers that the advertising corporations represent, the advertisers threaten to withdraw advertising unless editorial policy is altered. We have a self sustaining self regulating commercial capitalist media!

 

And this brings us to the central problem. In modern digital media production costs are heading towards zero. This means that the potential commercial pressure that advertisers can exert is also heading towards zero. And since advertisers commercial power is heading towards zero, their position as representatives of society through consumption is heading towards zero. Death of capitalism!!

 

From this perspective we can look again at the story that prompted this piece: The Breitbart/Kellog spat.

 

Breitbart started out as an insurgent small scale  Saxon Nationalist digital media operation with little or no effective media production costs. Under the terms of capitalist cult media it was invalid as it had no plurality of advertisers and therefore no commercial mediation of what it produced.

 

As it became bigger it attracted a plurality of larger scale advertisers up to the level of mush corporation Kellogg.

 

Kellogg received feedback that the content of Breitbart is offensive to some of the consumers it is supposed to represent.

 

Kellog expresses that offense with the threat and then the execution of removal of advertising revenue.

 

This is supposed to bring Breitbart back in line and serve as a warning to other digital media producers. But it hasn’t worked. Because fundamentally Breitbart’s production costs are close to zero.

 

So then pressure is applied to Facebook/Twitter etc, the distribution nodes that serve Breitbart because they CAN be controlled by large scale advertising revenue pressure. But even here, production costs are heading towards zero. This has limited effectiveness. So then the state is called in to regulate under the Fake News justification.

 

But there really is no such thing as FAKE NEWS only INVALID PRODUCTION which is production not regulated by large scale commercial advertising.

 

Its really all about FLAKE NEWS not FAKE NEWS.

Cultural Revolution Part 1 Or It’s Not EU It’s US

The description of Cultural Constituencies that I began to develop a couple of years ago was a natural progression from an analysis of the political and economic changes that had occured in the global economy as a consequence of the credit crunch. Economics as we had known it had ceased to exist and been replaced with a hybrid semi- Marxist control and command economy..the Free Marxet.

Marx was absolutely right when he deduced that the political structure within developed societies is a direct consequence of the economic structure of these societies. In order to support our previous form of political democracy it was necessary to have an economic arena wherein two opposing sides could work out a compromise of economic interests. This was a form of market in labour, wherein under controlled circumstances, ‘workers’ and ‘bosses’ could compete to secure relative econmic advantage.

In our present command economy such an arrangement is clearly insupportable. A command economy cannot allow independent institutions such as genuine trades unions that would forcibly prosecute the interests of members to the detriment of the overall planned economy.  It follows that the economic and political dichotomy required for traditional political democracy is not viable.

In this altered environment Cultural Constituencies emerge as the only possible vehicle through which differing social groups can identify and pursue their interests. The Brexit vote is the latest and most spectacular evidence of the emergence of Cultural Constituencies as the prime political force at work in the developed economies today.

The Brexit referendum was won by a little over 30% percent of the total population of Britain – a sizeable minority but not by any means a majority of the population. Despite this observation it cannot be argued that Brexit victory is somehow illegitimate. There is no minority within Britain that is greater in size than the Brexit gang so by the terms of formal democracy the vote stands.

Despite this unavoidable truth it is absolutely clear that Remain does not intend to accept the political reality of the Brexit vote or its legitimacy. This clearly brings the entire democratic framework within which the referendum was carried out into question.

Fundamental questioning of the existing democratic system is an inevitable consequence of the emergence of Cultural Constituencies. The reason for this is not complicated. The political system as we know it is designed to service economic constituencies groups who identify themselves and their interests in primarily economic terms.

If economic constituencies are no longer to be the prime building block of the system how can that system remain unaltered?

Imagine a large university building in the process of being constructed over two or three generations. Half way through, the builders find out that the red brick they have been using will no longer be available. The alternative building material they are being offered has a different tensile strength, water absorbance characteristic etc. which means that the structure that had originally been envisioned cannot be supported by this type of brick.

The part of the building that is not already built using the old brick will have to be extensively redesigned if it is to be built using the new brick. This is the political process we are watching being worked out now in Europe and around the globe.

This tension between the old plan and the new is now beginning to make itself felt through the altering structure of political parties.  Political parties as we know them represent a hybrid solution to the problem of ‘modernising’ Germanic land democracy.

Germanic Land democracy is based upon the free ownership and transfer of land. In all the Germanic democracies, land ownership was originally the prime requirement for the right to vote- to participate in the democracy. No land, no vote.

However, with the development of the cult of Capitalism and large numbers of landless ‘workers’, who were by definition disenfranchised, it was necessary to develop a hybrid solution. Cities rapidly became large centres of landless people which gave birth to an alternative ideology to Germanic Land Democracy- later identified as Communism.

This Communism would inevitably challenge the existing order and given the superiority of urban areas in numbers and productive capacity would win.  The solution was the creation of geographically constructed constituencies that expressed an economic justification for their existence through the party system.

The voting system would formally be based on geographical location, but the motivating political dynamic for taking part in that system, the parties, would be economic in character. This is the basis for so-called modern‘universal sufferage’-the right of everybody to vote.

From the point of view of stabilising Germanic societies this served the dual purpose of avoiding a direct challenge to Germanic land democracy by those who had no land, while at the same time avoiding the obvious conclusion that the political system should be formally organised upon economic or class lines.

Geographic boundaries as the basis for politics and democracy were preserved. And this is fundamental to the continued existence of Germanic Land Demorcacy.

Despite the rhetoric to the contrary, this form of compromise has proved to be inherently UNSTABLE and prone to periodic seismic crisis. Universal suffrage only became widespread in Europe around the turn of the last century and immediately produced a series of political and economic shocks that have increased in severity to the present day.

As a consequence of these shocks, the ideology of welfarism was developed to mitigate the obvious disparities of political and economic power. Welfare is the bounty paid to the landless to prevent their overthrow of land based Germanic Land Democracy.

However, these internal developments in the Germanic economies did not occur in a vacuum. Across the world changes in the balance of power meant that developed nations were having to modernise Germanic Land Democracy against a backdrop of relatively diminishing international power.

In the late 1960’s this reached a point of absolute crisis and the formal intellectual abandonment of the free market economic model in America. The Free Market was replaced by monetarism –  continual state control of the economy through the amount of money allowed into the economy by ‘independent’ central banks.

As the effects of Monetarism became apparent, we could see the end of the distribution of wealth and resources through the work and production model and its replacement with the distribution of wealth and resources through a property or asset ownership model.

This intermediate property or asset ownership model reached its own breaking point with the snapping of the link between taxation and asset and property ownership – what has come to be known as Neo Liberalism, and just as significantly, Globalism.

In essence globalism is not the movement of capital around the globe, that has been a greater or lesser feature of economy for thousands of years. It is most significantly the break between wealth generation through asset ownership and taxation by national governments.

This gives rise to the present crisis which is expressing itself at the weakest point of the chain- the joint between economic political parties and geographic political system. In Britian today the political system is physically imploding in front of our very eyes.

The two major parties have no effective leadership and furthermore, they have no prospect of establishing effective leadership in the short to mid term foreseeable future. By this I specifically mean that they have no plan to deal with the consequences of Brexit that will not necessarily entail their own eventual political destruction!

The two opposing sides in the Brexit conflict represent not economic differences, but cultural identity differences. This has become all but impossible to hide.

The Brexit side is perfectly willing to accept any short to mid term financial problems including uncertainty and some degree of isolation so long as it achieves their long term goal of disentangling English politics from Europe.  Likewise, the Remain side is entirely comfortable with ongoing hardship,especially for young people, in the form of mass immigration and competition for resources so long as they can stay within the European ideological mindset.

These are political AND personal decisions made by the individuals who have voted for each side. In this new political environment, the existing political parties simply have no way to lead ‘Leave’ and ‘Remain’ to some form of traditional compromise. There are no economic incentives they can offer to achieve compromise.

Madness or The Price Is Wrong or Neo Is The One

madness

 

The following is an excerpt from Crackernomics 2: The Structure Of Money

 

‘Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing’.

Oscar Wilde

 

Modern money operates as a universal Lingua Franca – a common language. It has gained this pre-eminence by promising ordinary people a way of understanding an otherwise incomprehensible world

 

But the understanding of reality that modern money offers is warped and mutilated. Modern money actually offers a facsimile of knowledge – an hallucination of the way the world is.

 

The ideology and rhetoric of modern money was created to seal this hallucination off from physical reality. This ideology permanently and irrevocably FRAGMENTS reality so that the cult of modern money cannot be challenged by human experience.

 

The ideology of modern money exists to mutilate your mind by partitioning it.

 

Priests of modern money claim that anything outside of their money model world is irrational and essentially meaningless. They insist that everything experienced outside their framework must be disregarded.

 

The priests of modern money claim that their parody of reason is the end point of the search for universal truth. They say that all other conceptions of value, truth and meaning are primitive, parochial and limited and in the end they will be swallowed up by the cult of modern money. They seek to persuade that the rise of this cult is irresistible because it is Progress.

 

A Kind Of Magic

 

The modern money knowledge hallucination is predicated on creating a description of the world that does not require any actual understanding of the physical characteristics of this world.

 

This claim to produce knowledge without understanding is a magical claim. To produce knowledge from nothing is alchemy- as preposterous as the claims of a fairground clairvoyant.

 

Take a moment to think about this. Across the globe there are vast markets which comprise of commodities being traded by people who in reality know literally nothing about these commodities. The system works because these traders are not required to know anything.

 

The speculative method of extracting wealth is predicated not upon understanding any particular commodity but upon predicting the prices that markets will create for commodities and reacting to them.

 

In other words market speculators are not trading on the knowledge they have but rather trading on the knowledge that others do not have!

 

For instance, a commodity trader is not required to know anything about an actual steak and its physical value to know what it will be ‘valued’ at. If he knows that any particular group of customers only has £5 to spend on steak, then he knows that the price these customers will pay for steak will not and cannot be more than £5. The steak will be ‘valued’ at worth £5 or less, irrespective of any actual physical value and worth.

 

This is an insight into ‘price discovery’. Prices are created not discovered. Contemporary prices are a consequence of previous prices. Monetarism is predicated on this observation. As such it is a repudiation of classic capitalist ideology.

 

Price ‘discovery’ is an illusion in the same way a student takes LSD and ‘discovers’ a whole new world previously unseen. But the truth is that he has not discovered anything. He has created this world by means of introducing a chemical into his brain.

 

Well you might say, how come descriptions of this LSD world seem to be so similar when people recount them? I am afraid the answer is that most people lack the imagination to create anything novel, either under the influence of drugs or not..

 

The money/price hallucination is another created virtual hallucination. It allows the raw resources of the world to be leveraged to extract value by people who will never actually see anything of these resources and who never have to directly face the consequences of their market manipulation.

 

This process reaches a new high (or low), point in HFT-high frequency trading. Modern networking computer technology allows analysis and manipulation of the market to be carried out in amounts of a nanosecond. Now no longer even knowledge of the other market participants required, only knowledge of the technical structure of the system expressed through computer code.

 

Is HFT the end game in the cult of modern money? Or is it possible that money can become even more sealed off from physical reality even as its dictatorship over lives becomes ever more tyrannical? How has money become transported over time from the population to a hermetically sealed dictatorship isolated in an intellectual palace?

 

The claim is made that the modern money hallucination is based on reason and reality. This is the historical link between the modern world of the money hallucination and the ‘Enlightenment’ which was supposed to be founded on reason.

 

The religion of Economics preaches the story of progress from the concrete world of the senses to the transcendent heaven of modern money. How is a system that was supposedly based on reason transformed into one openly based on ‘animal spirits’, fear and greed?

 

Understanding the relationship between the two rests on the difference between a proper description of reality and a money description of reality.

 

Proper Description

 

Here ‘proper’ is not intended as some kind of value judgement. It means to describe real artefacts in the real world using real descriptors- a physical description. A proper description of any particular object has two elements.

 

The first dynamic of proper description defines the commonality of objects. In the case of an apple we can describe an apple as ‘plant’ and then as ‘fruit’. Using the plant…fruit descriptor we associate the apple within an ontology, a systematic description of plants.

 

The second dynamic of description differentiates an object as different from other objects within a class. e.g. Fruits are consistently different enough from all other plants to be defined in their own right. ‘Apples’ are consistently different enough from all other ‘fruits’ to be seen as something definable in their own right. We can further subdivide ‘apples’ into different varieties and then further refine the subdivision process.

 

In theory it should be possible to create a description for each individual apple that locates it within the entirety of nature- by which I mean not just an abstract description of type, but to locate a particular apple within time and space.

 

We start from broad categories:

 

Plants- subdivided to Fruit – subdivided to Apple- subdivided to Variety- subdivided to Location- subdivided to Farm – subdivided to Tree – subdivided to Time of harvest.

 

When we carry out this process something peculiar happens along the way. Numbers begin to substitute for names. There are no longer absolute descriptors (names), such as ‘Apple’ only relative ones; weight, colour, sweetness etc. These require relative numeric values.

 

As we move towards capturing a specific instance the uniqueness we seek becomes lost in relativity. The harder we seek ‘uniqueness’ the more it is revealed to be a chimera. Names are subdivided into numbers. But then numbers are subdivided into codes.

A code is in fact a name constructed from numbers. But where numbers are real e.g. they are descriptors, codes are not real (they are names), and require descriptors!

 

If I describe an apple as the fifth apple picked from a tree, I am not describing something uniquely real about that apple. I am describing something relative- something that only has meaning in relation to all the other apples on that tree. ‘Five’ is a number and it is real; ‘Fifth’ is a code and it is not.

 

And once we have allowed the creation of number/code/names all Hell breaks lose shortly after.

 

The number 400 is divisible by the number two to create the number 200. But the code/name/descriptor 400 is also divisible by the number 2 to create the code/name/descriptor 200. The meaning of this observation is that codes can be made to parallel the logic of mathematics.

In other words CODES can relate to each other numerically and consistently the same way that NUMBERS can. But they are NOT required to be defined and relate to each other LOGICALLY the way that NAMES are. This means that results can be produced from manipulating codes that are consistent but not logical or real.

 

Codes operate in the gap between names and numbers. This is where the hallucination is situated.

 

You can numerically binary encode an image (description) of Superman in a Computer Generated Imagery program. And then you can numerically manipulate that code to make him ‘fly’ in encoded space. The description of his flight will be entirely consistent within the encoded universe. But it won’t be real. It will be a model.

 

When that model is intercut with ‘real’ live action you have real problems telling what is real and what is not. This is how CGI/Live action movies work.

 

At the moment we are not required to act as though a Superman film is a real documentary. (Well, for now anyway). But we are required to act as though climate change models are real. And climate change models are essentially the same thing as a Superman film, real footage intercut with numerically manipulated code descriptors.

 

Climate change models take real stuff and code it. Then they produce a film, (a model), based on that manipulation. The film IS consistent. It DOES make numerical sense. But that does not mean it is logical or real.

 

In order for the climate change ‘model’ to be plausible it has to be cut off from the real physical world so it cannot be challenged by experience. And so it is. It is placed in the future where our real physical world experience cannot go.

 

Superman lives in Metropolis. Batman lives in Gotham City. Climate change lives in the future.

 

The same applies to price. Price is code masquerading as number. As a consequence modern money ‘value’ is also code masquerading as number.

 

Most of the people reading this will be well informed enough to know and understand that the ‘Federal Reserve’ is nothing to do with the Federal Government of America. It is just a name.

 

But do you also understand that the ‘10’ printed in the corner of a dollar note is not actually a number but also just a code/name? And the ‘$1’ price tag printed on a stick of celery at your local market is also actually a code and not a number?

 

The implications of this are massive and staggering.

 

Just as the name ‘apple’ is used in England and ‘pomme’ is used in France and ‘manzana’ is used in Spain, so this artefact is given a different price in all these different territories.

 

What is the relationship between the different names used in the different territories? Is it logical? It is the same relationship as that between the different ‘prices’ for this artefact. There is no real, logical relationship.

 

Outrageous nonsense! I hear you cry. There is a real consistent relationship between prices and the value of money notes. They vary but they make sense in national and international markets.

 

No. There is a consistent real relationship between NUMBERS and codes steal this relationship and use it to masquerade as logical, rational and reasonable under cover of it. It is a parody of reason.

 

Money value is something that various disparate artefacts are held to have in common. As Oscar Wilde famously said :

 

‘Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing’.

 

It is hard to over emphasise the profound intelligence of this remark.

The deeper truth is that we know the price of everything precisely because we don’t know its value. Price is the only way that the Germanic cult of Capitalism can make practical, intellectual and even moral sense of the world.

 

We don’t know the actual value relationship between a red pepper and a box of matches. But if the pepper is priced at 50p and the box of matches at £1 we say that the matches are twice as valuable as the pepper. Of course this is absolute gibberish, but the world is made to conform to this madness…

 

In another example, two things that cost the same are said to be the same. This gives rise to the outrageous example of the inflation substitution calculation in America.

 

When any particular item in the basket of goods used to calculate the rate of inflation actually inflates in price, it is simply substituted for an alternative at the old price! When steak becomes too expensive to fit the ‘inflation rate’ it is removed as an embarrassment and hamburger is substituted. Quality is not a concern when inflation substitution is made.

 

This outrageous abuse of reason works on the basis that anything at a given price is the equivalent of anything else at that same price. Reason, life and the world are mutilated so they fit the price hallucination.

 

I will finish with a broad description of price rhetoric.

 

Say you wish to buy a vacuum cleaner. You are presented with a list of three possible vacuum cleaners priced at M50, M80 and M600. (M is any standard unit of currency)

 

The prices given generate two categories of apparent ‘information’:

 

1.’Information’ about each particular vacuum cleaner in relation to the others and also

 

2.’Information’ about vacuum cleaners in general as a group of products.

 

Information about each particular vacuum cleaner in relation to the others

 

That M50 and M80 are similar but that M600 is considerably superior in some way; as expressed in price. You can understand this as the quantified (of course no actual ‘quantity is identified, just a code name), difference between a standard saloon and luxury sports car.

 

’Information’ about vacuum cleaners in general.

 

The value of vacuum cleaners in relationship to boxes of matches or whatever. e.g. all vacuum cleaners as a class of product are more expensive and thus more valuable than all boxes of matches as a class of product.

 

It follows from this that if we alter the price list relationship between the three vacuum cleaners we say something different about these relationships and generalities. The price mechanism generates a grammar and a logic upon which the rhetoric of marketing is based.

 

However, the problem is that this information is based upon assumptions about price that are not necessarily true. In order to create a semblance of general logic they assume:
The seller wants to sell at any particular price.

The seller wants to sell as many elements as possible at any particular price

Each price describes an independent entrant into the market

There is a relationship between price and intention

 

But it is often the case that:

 

The seller does not want to sell at any particular price.

The seller does not want to sell as many elements as possible at any particular price

Each price does not describe an independent entrant into the market

There is no relationship between price and intention

 

In other words the market cannot really capture the reality of intentions: Sometimes the market is ‘rigged’, which really means sometimes market participants do not act in the way that the priests of the ‘free’ market claim they should act.

 

And so the free marketers relaxed laissez faire attitude is transformed into rage and they rush to pass laws to protect free markets from… freedom. The free market always becomes a dictatorship of rules to make sure it remains free.

 

 

At the conclusion of the Matrix the ‘Neo’ Man discovers that the whole universe he has been living in is the expression of code. It has consistency but it is not real. Once he sees the world as merely code he can manipulate it in any way he wishes.

 

The Matrix was all about financialisation.

 

It was made in 1999, just when financialisation was really getting going.

 

What else would it be about?

BLINK: Apr 12 2016

 

eye

Nose on your face..

 

In this piece Mr Edelman says:

 

‘Remarkably, today the derivatives positions held by the large banks approach 10 times those of 2007-2008. In four banks alone, they exceed the GDP of the entire world. This is the interesting consequence when unchecked risk management rests in bankers’ hands.’

 

Is this a co-incidence? If it is not a co-incidence, then it must be intentional musn’t it? What could be the intention behind creating ten times as many derivatives as there were in 2008?

 

It seems that central banks and politicians must want lots of derivatives what else could this mean? Why would they want lots of derivatives? What is it about derivatives that central bankers and politicians like? If you visit USE regularly I think you already know…

I’m the real-life Gordon Gekko and I support Bernie Sanders
Asher Edelman

The potential for a depression looms on the horizon. The Vermont senator is the only candidate who can stop banks from spiraling out of control again

 

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/apr/12/real-life-gordon-gekko-supports-bernie-sanders-wall-street-banks-regulation

 

Things Fall Apart..

 

This diagram shows in a very clear and succinct manner the point I have been making in Vector History about capitalism and financialisation DISINTEGRATING society..

 

@ian bremner

 

The best explanation so far

 

 

Head-Brick Wall

 

American Trotskyists can’t seem to understand why information like this doesn’t provoke a move towards ‘class’ politics but instead provokes a move towards what they call ‘identity’ politics. Until they address the arrival of CULTURAL CONSTITUENCIES, they are going to have to continue stumbling around in the dark..

Life expectancy gap between US rich and poor widens
By Jerry White
12 April 2016
http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2016/04/12/life-a12.html

 

Roll over
Reuters coverage of the Syrian theatre of war just seems to get more ridiculously lopsided by the day..

Syria’s Assad shows no willingness to compromise
CAIRO | By Samia Nakhoul

 

http://uk.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-insight-idUKKCN0X50O0

 

Cake or Ha’penny
 

You can have millions of pretend jobs or you can have productivity growth but you can’t have both at the same time…

Britain suffers biggest downturn in productivity since the financial crisis
Figures a bitter blow to hopes the UK is finally escaping the stagnation that has bogged down the country since the banks crisis

 

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/britain-suffers-biggest-downturn-in-productivity-since-the-financial-crisis-a6974011.html

 

Uppity
 

This black gentleman might not quite be on the ball about everything, but he is having a go at thinking about Eurasia etc., so good for him. He seems to me like a reasonably nice, relatively harmless type.  But oh dear, check out the response..

 

Imagine a world without whiteness

Professor Calls For “Whiteness” to be “Abolished”
 “We need to….demolish the whole concept”

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet.com
April 6, 2016

Professor Calls For “Whiteness” to be “Abolished”

 

Living History

 

This is what ancient Greek democracy actually looked and sounded like. It wasn’t Lawrence Olivier and Marlon Brando walking about in bedsheets making speeches over Gina Lollobrigida, it was this: Rape, torture, cruelty and murder. All over Athens, all over Sparta, all over. Next time someone tries to give you the spiel about how noble and great democracy was/is, show them this….

 

‘House of horrors’: Police find apparent sex slave chained to stripper’s pole in Detroit home

 

By Peter Holley April 6 Follow @peterjholley

 

When police searched the run-down, two-story house on Tuller Street in Detroit, they found something that took even longtime cops by surprise: a woman chained to a stripper’s pole, with a padlock around her neck.

 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/04/06/house-of-horrors-police-find-apparent-sex-slave-chained-to-strippers-pole-in-detroit-home/

 

 

 

Notes on the Standard Narrative..

 

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/mar/05/timeline-seven-years-of-record-low-interest-rates-bank-of-england

The Guardian recently published a potted history of interest rate setting and associated financial shennanigans, seven years after the start of the Credit Crunch. I have reproduced it here in full along with a few comments of my own (in bold) offering an alternative interpretation of central bank policy and what its real purpose is.

From ‘The Guardian’

By Katie Allen Saturday 5 March 2016 07.00 GMT

 

Seven years ago on Saturday (5 March), the Bank of England slashed interest rates to a record low of 0.5%. At the time, the cut and plans to pump billions of pounds of electronic money into the economy seemed like an emergency measure to cushion the UK from the global financial crisis. But borrowing costs are still at their record low and amid warnings that a new global slump is around the corner, Bank policymakers show no signs of raising rates any time soon.

 

We look back over seven years of ultra-loose monetary policy:

March 2009: The Bank of England cuts interest rates from 1% to 0.5%, the lowest since the central bank was founded in 1694. Policymakers also push the button on a quantitative easing programme – which will pump tens of billions of pounds of newly created money into Britain’s troubled economy.

 

‘The lowest (interest rates) since 1694’ – effectively since the beginning of capitalism.

 

If the base interest rate reflects the value of a national currency, and a national currency reflects a nation and its economic system, this is another way of saying that as of March 2009 the net added value of three centuries of modern capitalism is zero!

 

‘Pump tens of billions of pounds into…’

As though something is actually being put into the economy instead of the value of existing money being debased by ‘printing’ more money without any increase in production…

 

‘ into Britain’s troubled economy..’

Guardian being careful not to specify which part of the economy all of this money is going into- so as to imply it is going to all parts of the economy equally (which it did not, and was not intended to ).

 

It is the sixth time that UK borrowing costs have fallen since October 2008, when rates were still 5%. Announcing the cut to 0.5%, the Bank’s monetary policy committee, led by governor Mervyn King, notes a slowdown in the global economy and “persistent problems in international credit markets”. In the UK , it highlights a drop in economic output at the end of 2008, a rise in unemployment and tight credit conditions for businesses and households.

 

King says it is unlikely that the bank rate could go any lower and policymakers will shift focus to creating money instead. “We are very close to zero. What we are doing now is switching to injecting money into the economy directly.”

In the case of the Bank of England, QE took the form of banking ‘other institutions’ as though they were licensed banks- effectively giving them the status of licensed banks.

 

This means taking them directly under the wing of the Bank of England and licensing them to create money just as private banks do, with protection as privileged institutions. Non bank ‘financial institutions’ were given the same status as banks. And their products- private democratised money in the form of derivatives, were given the SAME PROTECTED STATUS as private bank credit issued in the form of loans.

 

May 2009: The Bank of England surprises the City by announcing it is to increase the size of its quantitative easing (QE) operation by £50bn to £125bn, amid growing concern that the programme announced in March is failing to turn the economy around. It is the first of many increases in QE to come over the years that follow, taking the total to £375bn.

On the same day in May 2009, the European Central Bank (ECB) cuts interest rates to a record low of 1% and says it will follow the Bank of England in launching QE in a bid to pull the Eurozone’s stricken economy out of recession.

 

Part of a co-ordinated global response to the crisis. By devaluing ALL government issued money simultaneously, Monetarist cabals are launching their all out war on government issued money – which is now intensifying as the War On Cash’.

 

May 2010: A new coalition government is formed by the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats after the general election. Bank of England governor Mervyn King gives his strong backing for spending cuts in new chancellor George Osborne’s first budget to come later in the summer.

 

The breathing space granted by QE was designed to be used for the restructuring of western economies and the end of post WWII welfare states, to get them in line with the new privately issued money system. This process is being led by the Monetarists of the Saxon Axis.

 

June 2010: George Osborne announces the biggest shakeup in City regulation since 1997 and hands sweeping new powers to the Bank of England designed to prevent a fresh financial crisis.

 

King emerges as the big winner from the chancellor’s shakeup of supervision that will abolish the Financial Services Authority. The Bank is given new tools to prevent bubbles from developing in the financial system, including the right to force banks to hold more capital during boom periods.

 

This is the formal recognition of the new structure whereby private financial organisations are brought under the wing of the Bank of England and granted money creation privileges. From now on there is to be NO formal democratic political control of the money issuance process at all. It is entirely privatised.

 

September 2010: The Bank’s deputy governor Charlie Bean urges Britons to go out and spend to help invigorate the UK’s economic recovery.

Rising inflation stokes rate rise bets

Inflation rises, pushed up by higher petrol prices

 

‘Britons’ are supposed to max out credit cards to wet the head of the democratised money baby. A bit like your wife telling you that her pregnancy is the product of a sexual liaison with her personal trainer and then demanding that you organise and pay for a baby shower..

February 2011: Following a VAT rise and a pick-up in petrol prices, official figures show inflation hit 4% in January – well above the Bank’s 2% target. Inflation goes up further over following months and peaks at 5.2% in September 2011.

 

City speculation rises that the Bank of England will be forced to raise interest rates within months to curb price pressures. The CBI business group predicts interest rates will begin to rise in the next few months and will end the year at 1.25%.

 

Minutes from the latest monetary policy committee meeting show concerns about inflation are growing there too. Two members voted for a quarter-point rise in interest rates while a third urged a half-point rise.

 

All of which goes to show that the Bank Of England never had, and never will have, any intention whatsoever of ‘fighting’ inflation. The purpose of these maneuvers is to devalue all government issued money and raise the relative exchange value of privately issued money (derivatives) in relation to the pound.

 

July 2011: The Bank of England’s Eurozone counterpart, the European Central Bank, shrugs off the region’s debt crisis and raises interest rates for the second time in 2011 to curb inflation. The move takes the ECB’s benchmark rate to 1.5%. The ECB is forced to start reversing those rises before the year is out amid fears the eurozone crisis could tip economies in the single currency bloc back into recession.

 

Unlike the Anglo Saxon oligarchies, the continental Germanic government which controls Europe has two factions; one which fully embraces Saxon financialisation and one which seeks to hold on to the post WWII social corporate state system. Guess which one has more or less lost the battle…

 

August 2011: Against the background of wild swings on world stock markets, the two hawkish members of the Bank’s monetary policy committee abandon their calls for borrowing costs to rise.

 

Get away- you don’t say !

 

November 2011: The world’s major central banks pledge concerted emergency measures to underpin fragile eurozone banks and prevent the global financial system from freezing up.

 

After a teleconference chaired by King involving six central banks, they announce “coordinated central bank action to address pressures in global money markets”.

 

The moves are reminiscent of autumn 2008, when central banks came together to slash interest rates and inject liquidity into financial markets in the wake of the collapse of Lehman Brothers.

 

More QE and a new funding for lending scheme

How did Katie somehow forget to mention at the beginning that all of the central banks had been co-ordinating an attack on government issued money from the very beginning of the crisis?

 

July 2012: The Bank’s monetary policy committee votes to raise the total amount of quantitative easing to £375bn, citing signs that the global economy is flagging and having knock-on effects on the UK’s recovery. The move coincided with interest rate cuts in the crisis-hit eurozone and in China.

 

Later the same month, the Bank of England unveils a scheme to boost lending to first-time buyers and small companies in a move that ministers hope will inject fresh funds into the ailing UK economy.

 

The “funding for lending” scheme is welcomed by the chancellor, George Osborne, who says the launch of the £80bn emergency facility shows Britain is “not powerless to act” in the face of the eurozone crisis.

 

The scheme offers cut-price loans to banks and building societies, which are expected to make the money available through mortgages to homebuyers and loans to small businesses. But experts warn the new cash may not reach those who need it the most.

 

August 2012: A Bank of England paper concludes that Britain’s richest 5% gained most from quantitative easing. Threadneedle Street said that wealthy families had been the biggest beneficiaries of its £375bn QE programme but also insists the scheme has helped all sections of the population by sparing the country from a deeper slump.

 

In order to protect existing ‘Mortgage Backed Securities’ and even more importantly to protect the PRINCIPLE that private entities will issue democratised money and the state will clean up any resulting mess, the housing bubble has to be protected as the basis for Mortgage Backed Securities -financial instruments- derivatives-privately issued money.

 

November 2012: The Treasury announces that big cash balances amassed by the Bank of England as a result of its electronic money-creation programme will be used to pay down the national debt by £35bn over the next 18 months. Osborne wants Threadneedle Street to hand over the interest payments it has received on the gilts bought since the start of the QE scheme in early 2009.

They steal your car but they leave your furry dice on the pavement as a consolation..

 

November 2012: George Osborne springs a surprise on the City by announcing Canada’s central bank chief will succeed Mervyn King as governor of the Bank of England.

 

Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of Canada, is the first non-Briton to become Bank of England governor. He is largely unknown outside the cloistered circles of central bankers and financial regulators, but has gained a reputation as a tough operator able to confront leading banks at the heart of the financial crisis.

 

It later emerges that Carney will pocket an annual £250,000 housing allowance, taking his total pay package to £874,000 a year when he takes the reins in the summer of 2013.

 

July 2013: Mark Carney takes over from Mervyn King as Bank of England governor. On his first day in the new job, Carney arrives in Threadneedle Street by tube.

 

First of all the idea was to make the Bank of England run by a group of non elected technocrats. Then the idea is to give it over to be run by someone who was not even English! The next appointee will be someone wearing a black hood and you won’t even be allowed to ask his (or her) name…

 

August 2013: New Bank of England governor Mark Carney unveils a strategy of “forward guidance”, under which policymakers will not consider raising rates until unemployment declines to 7% (from 7.8%). The Bank’s own forecast puts unemployment above 7% in 2016.

 

The governor says the Bank will only think again about its pro-growth stance if there is a threat of higher inflation or asset bubbles.

 

The scheme is greeted with skepticism in the City. Long-term interest rates, set by investors in financial markets, rise after forward guidance is first announced, amid a slew of upbeat data about house prices, retail spending and business confidence.

 

September 2013: Chancellor George Osborne says he is giving the Bank of England greater powers to prevent the government’s help-to-buy scheme causing a property boom.

 

The ‘fighting inflation’ story was shown to be nonsense, so then the Bank Of England concocted a story about unemployment being the most important indicator. Anything to avoid the truth, that it was the relative value of derivatives in comparison with the state issued currency that was the most important factor.

 

November 2013: Bank governor Mark Carney reins in the mortgage market in a bid to prevent five years of ultra-low interest rates and George Osborne’s help-to-buy scheme from fuelling a housing bubble. Carney announces he is refocusing the funding for lending scheme that gave lenders financial incentives to provide home loans. The focus will now be on business lending, the governor says.

 

February 2014: Just six months after forward guidance was launched the unemployment rate has already dropped below 7% – two years earlier than the Bank had been expecting. Carney signals, however, that the Bank will keep interest rates at the record low of 0.5% for at least another year and that policymakers “will not take risks with this recovery”. He also insists “forward guidance is working”.

 

Inflation was a nonsense excuse for QE now unemployment was shown to be nonsense excuse for QE

 

May 2014: Mark Carney warns that the housing market poses the biggest risk to Britain’s economic recovery as a shortage of new homes drives up prices.

June 2014: Bank of England gets new powers to control the size of mortgages. Carney warns that interest rates are likely to rise before the end of 2014.

 

Later that month, members of parliament’s Treasury select committee accuse the Bank of behaving like an “unreliable boyfriend”, giving mixed messages on when the first rise in interest rates is likely.

 

September 2014: Carney warns workers they face higher interest rates in the spring of 2015 before they receive rises in real wages.

 

The Bank of England, like the Fed desperately wants to ‘normalise the situation, by getting off zero interest rates.

 

 

Deflation threat sparks rate cut talk

 

March 2015: With inflation falling closer to zero, Bank of England chief economist Andy Haldane suggests policymakers may be forced to slash interest rates to zero in the coming months to tackle the threat of deflation.

 

Official figures after Haldane’s remarks show that inflation has dropped to zero for the first time on record in Britain. Inflation was pushed down by a deep oil price slump and a fierce price war being fought out by supermarkets. Inflation, measured on the consumer prices index (CPI), turns negative in April.

CPI inflation.

 

May 2015: The coalition government is replaced by a Conservative government. The coalition was the first administration in more than half a century to enjoy unchanged borrowing costs for its entire term. In the first announcement from the Bank under the new Conservative government, interest rates are again held at 0.5%.

 

New rate rise hints from Carney

 

FFS!

 

July 2015: The BoE governor says an interest rate hike in the UK is “moving closer”. He tells the Treasury select committee households should start to manage their finances with a future hike in mind and he notes the UK economy has been performing well, that wages are starting to pick up and that employment has seen a big increase.

 

Later that month, Carney suggests the first interest rate rise since the global financial crash could come around the turn of the year. In a speech, he adds that after an extended period of what were expected to be emergency rates, borrowing costs were likely to peak at just over 2% – half their average historic norm since the Bank was founded in 1694.

 

‘borrowing costs were likely to peak at just over 2%’

There is a direct relationship between the total amount of money in circulation, the amount of the economy it services and the base interest rate. The long term average interest rate is PROCLAIMED by the Saxon elite henceforth to be around 2% as a clear statement of intent: From now on, Government Issued Money will only service a fraction of the total British economy.

 

What fraction is this?

 

The previous average post war interest rate is approx 5%, so it will be 2% divided by 5% – or 40%. In other words, the elite have proclaimed that in the medium to long term OVER HALF the British economy will be serviced by privately issued money.

 

But minutes from the Bank’s latest rate-setting meeting show concerns among policymakers that slow progress resolving the Greek debt crisis could delay a rate rise.

Chinese slowdown fears intensify

August 2015: China devalues its yuan currency against the dollar, sending shockwaves through global markets – already jittery over signs of a worsening slowdown in the country’s economy and wild swings on its stock markets.

 

The currency move dampens talk of interest rate rises in the US and UK given the prospect that cheaper Chinese goods will reduce inflationary pressures in those countries.

 

But Carney says that while a slowdown in China’s economy could push down further on inflation, it does not change, for now, the central bank’s position on when and how it might increase interest rates.

 

Carney really wants to push the button and get on with it. Raising interest rates is an important signal that the democratised money project is concluding its initial stage.

 

September 2015: BoE chief economist Haldane again warns that interest rates may have to be cut further from their record low level as he highlights signs that the global financial crisis is entering a third phase of turmoil.

 

Haldane is speaking a day after the US central bank decided to delay an interest rate rise for the world’s biggest economy. The US rate-setters blamed a more fragile global outlook in remarks that further rattled jittery financial markets.

 

November 2015: The Bank of England is ready to step up controls on the housing market if a prolonged period of record low interest rates risks inflating a property bubble, Carney says. As he signals that interest rates are likely to remain on hold well into 2016, Carney suggested the Bank may have to revert to other measures, such as tighter lending rules, to keep a lid on house prices.

 

KATIE YOU FORGOT TO MENTION THAT THE FED RAISED INTEREST RATES IN DECEMBER!!!

 

What does this tell you about the quality of economic reporting in the Guardian and the media generally with regard to finance and the economy?

 

February 2016: Carney says policymakers in the UK could cut interest rates to zero if necessary, but would seek to avoid following Sweden, Denmark and the eurozone by setting negative rates to bolster growth and inflation.

 

Responding to questions from MPs on the Treasury select committee, Carney says the world economy has entered a period of low growth and low interest rates and is likely to be prone to financial shocks.

 

March 2016: The UK marks seven years of record low interest rates.

 

New research marking the anniversary claims rock bottom borrowing costs and quantitative have cost savers an estimated £160bn, but supported strong increases in the prices of property, stocks and bonds. In its analysis, financial firm Hargreaves Lansdown suggests loose monetary policy has “annihilated” returns on cash.

 

Savers have net transferred value to speculators to the tune of £160bn (and you can bet it is considerably more than that). More importantly, the ‘interest bearing function’ of money is being destroyed. One of the benefits of government issued money is being destroyed, taken away from you. What is the effect of this? It makes the alternatives to government issued money seem a lot more valuable. One of the alternatives of course, is Democratised Money.

 

Throughout the entire Guardian narrative the central bank response to the Credit Crunch is presented as being fundamentally arbitrary, contingent and chaotic. In other words there is no fundamental perspective or purpose that is driving the logic of central bank actions.

Actions and consequences happen in a confusing and sometimes contradictory swirl of intention and understanding.

 

So the drama unfolds as a revelation to the authors of the crisis as much as it does to us.

 

But from the perspective of privatising the supply of money- the democratisation of money- the actions that have been taken by monetarist central banks and the consequences that these actions produce, suddenly seem straightforward and entirely predictable.