Henry Paulson

A Common Central Bank Tool: Fearmongering

Central bankers should not be treated as wise oracles whose guidance is desperately needed. Instead, we should throw off the tyranny of the PhD’s and embrace the decentralization of power that is desperately needed to allow civilization to thrive. Brexit would be a great way to start.

Hypocrisy Defined: Hank Paulson Tells China "Let Failing Companies Fail"

"Do as I say, not as I do" is the clear message of hypocrisy spewed forth by former US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson this week. Having presided over the largest redistriubution of taxpayer funds to bailout the banking system, while exclaiming fire and brimstone should they not be saved, he now has some advice for an over-levered, over-capacity, systemically-stymied China - "let failing companies fail."

Austrian Economics, Monetary Freedom, & America's Economic Roller-Coaster

It is time for a radical denationalization of money, a privatization of the monetary and banking system through a separation of government from money and all forms of financial intermediation. That is the pathway to ending the cycles of booms and busts, and creating the market-based institutional framework for sustainable economic growth and betterment. It is time for monetary freedom to replace the out-of-date belief in government monetary central planning.

Blankfein Joins The Billionaire Bankers' Club

Just a little over a month after we learned that Jamie Dimon recently became a billionaire, Bloomberg reports that yet another TBTF CEO has joined the billionaire banker club and frankly, we’re surprised it took this long because after all, when you’re the CEO of the blood-sucking cephalopod that holds the political and financial fate of the world in its tentacles, it seems only right that you would have been a billionaire long before any other banker on the Street.

The Bush Family Goes "All In" For Number Three (With The Help Of Its Bankers)

It’s happening. As expected, dynastic politics is prevailing in campaign 2016. After a tease about as long as Hillary’s, Jeb Bush (aka Jeb!) officially announced his presidential bid last week. Ultimately, the two of them will fight it out for the White House, while the nation’s wealthiest influencers will back their ludicrously expensive gambit. And here’s a hint: don’t bet on Jeb not to make it through the Republican gauntlet of 12 candidates (so far). After all, the really big money’s behind him.

Nomi Prins: The Clintons & Their Banker Friends

In the coming months, however many hours Clinton spends introducing herself to voters in small-town America, she will spend hundreds more raising money in four-star hotels and multimillion-dollar homes around the nation. The question is: "Can Clinton claim to stand for 'everyday Americans,' while hauling in huge sums of cash from the very wealthiest of us?" This much cannot be disputed: Clinton's connections to the financiers and bankers of this country - and this country's campaigns - run deep. As Nomi Prins questions, who counts more to such a candidate, the person you met over that chicken burrito bowl or the Citigroup partner you met over crudités and caviar?

How Wall Street, In Broad Daylight, Took Over The US Government

... And all of this takes place in broad daylight, in front of the entire American population, which is too bored, too lazy, and far too distracted by collecting the government handout equivalent of plastic beads, spending on 99 cent apps and watching the Grammys to care.

Frontrunning: October 7

  • Liberian Rubber Farm Becomes Sanctuary Against Ebola (WSJ)
  • The World’s Most Powerful Central Banker: Janet Who? (BBG)
  • Islamic State moves into south west of Syrian Kurdish town (Reuters)
  • Waldorf to Be Biggest Chinese Property Purchase in U.S. (BBG)
  • Spain Seeks People in Contact With Ebola-Infected Nurse (BBG)
  • Hong Kong protests at crossroads as traffic, frustration pile up (Reuters)
  • Immigration: Grim Caseload at the Border (WSJ)
  • China Cuts Thousands of ‘Phantom’ Workers From State Payroll (BBG)
  • U.S., U.K. Regulators Push to Settle Deutsche Bank Libor Case This Year (WSJ)
  • Wall Street Moles Go to NY’s Top Cop, Spurning SEC Cash (BBG)
  • Pimco's outflow headaches only just beginning (Reuters)
  • Japan Lawmakers Flag Need for Exit Strategy as Yen Falls (BBG)

The Greatest Propaganda Coup Of Our Time?

There’s good propaganda and bad propaganda. Bad propaganda is generally crude, amateurish Judy Miller “mobile weapons lab-type” nonsense that figures that people are so stupid they’ll believe anything that appears in “the paper of record.” Good propaganda, on the other hand, uses factual, sometimes documented material in a coordinated campaign with the other major media to cobble-together a narrative that is credible, but false. The so called Fed’s transcripts, which were released last week, fall into the latter category... But while the conversations between the members are accurately recorded, they don’t tell the gist of the story or provide the context that’s needed to grasp the bigger picture. Instead, they’re used to portray the members of the Fed as affable, well-meaning bunglers who did the best they could in ‘very trying circumstances’. While this is effective propaganda, it’s basically a lie, mainly because it diverts attention from the Fed’s role in crashing the financial system, preventing the remedies that were needed from being implemented (nationalizing the giant Wall Street banks), and coercing Congress into approving gigantic, economy-killing bailouts which shifted trillions of dollars to insolvent financial institutions that should have been euthanized.  What I’m saying is that the Fed’s transcripts are, perhaps, the greatest propaganda coup of our time.

Guest Post: What If There's A Recession In 2014?

If policymakers were gunfighters, they’d be out of bullets: They have run out of effective policy tools to improve the economy.

So the question is simple: If there is a recession in 2014, and policymakers are out of bullets, how will it play out across the American economy?

Walmart's Now Ex-CEO To Pocket $113 Million Pension, 6182 Times Greater Than Average WMT Worker's 401(k) Balance

Moments ago, as we reported, the CEO of Walmart, Mike Duke, retired. And while he will hardly pocket quite as much as Hank Paulson, his departure may raise even more eyebrows as his retirement package, to which he is now entitled, is a whopping $113 million, or about 6,182 times greater than the average 401(k) balance of a typical Wal-Mart worker according to a NerdWallet analysis. Naturally, this is orders of magnitude greater than the already debatable ratio of CEO compensation, which was $20.7 million in 2012, or about 305 times more than the average Walmart manager, and 836 more than the take home of the median Walmart worker.

12 Ominous Warnings Of What A US Default Would Mean For The Global Economy

As we have discussed previously, the "partial government shutdown" that we are experiencing right now is pretty much a non-event - especially with the un-furloughing of The Pentagon.  Yeah, some national parks are shut down and some federal workers will have their checks delayed, but it is not the end of the world.  In fact, only about 17% of the federal government is actually shut down at the moment.  This "shutdown" could continue for many more weeks and it would not affect the global economy too much. On the other hand, if the debt ceiling deadline (approximately October 17th) passes without an agreement that would be extremely dangerous. A U.S. debt default that lasts for more than a couple of days could potentially cause a financial crash that would make 2008 look like a Sunday picnic. If a debt default were to happen before the end of this year, that would bring a tremendous amount of future economic pain into the here and now, and the consequences would likely be far greater than any of us could possibly imagine.