Despite the Fed continuing to kick this down the road, they continue to claim that we are in the middle of an ongoing recovery. There’s just one problem with that: things are getting worse than pre-crisis levels for millions of the poorest Americans. Possibly even more concerning is the fact that the amount of Americans living below the poverty line has soared since 2007.
Most economists and financial analysts think that 'currency war' merely refers to the competitive devaluations that nations sometimes engage in to help boost their domestic economies, as they had done in the 1930's for example. This time the currency war is a much more profound confrontation of differing agendas revolving around the historically unusual role of the US dollar, based on nothing more than the will of the Federal Reserve and the 'full faith and credit' of the US, as the reserve currency for global central banks and international trade.
Fed Hike Will Unleash "Panic And Turmoil" And A New Emerging Market Crisis, Warns World Bank Chief EconomistSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/08/2015 17:25 -0400
Earlier today we got the most glaring confirmation there had been absolutely zero coordination at the highest levels of authority and "responsibility", when the World Bank's current chief economist, Kaushik Basu warned that the Fed risks, and we quote, triggering “panic and turmoil” in emerging markets if it opts to raise rates at its September meeting and should hold fire until the global economy is on a surer footing, the World Bank’s chief economist has warned. And just in case casually tossing the words "panic in turmoil" was not enough, Basu decided to add a few more choice nouns, adding a rate hike "could yield a “shock” and a new crisis in emerging markets"
There is strong evidence that economies perform better with a tight labor market and, as the International Monetary Fund has shown, lower inequality (and the former typically leads to the latter). Of course, the financiers and corporate executives who pay $1,000 to attend the Jackson Hole meeting see things differently: Low wages mean high profits, and low interest rates mean high stock prices. Statements from Fed officials that the economy has virtually returned to normal are met with derision. Perhaps that is true in the neighborhoods where the officials live. But, with the bulk of the increase in incomes since the US “recovery” began going to the top 1% of earners, it is not true for most communities. Simply put, in the US, workers are being asked to sacrifice their livelihoods and wellbeing to protect well-heeled financiers from the consequences of their own recklessness.
Bernanke Shills for El Militario-Industrio Complexo
Though transparency was a cause he championed when campaigning for the presidency, President Obama has largely avoided making certain defense costs known to the public. However, when it comes to military appropriations for government spy agencies, we know from Freedom of Information Act requests that the so-called “black budget” is an increasingly massive expenditure subsidized by American taxpayers.
The bail out is a cynical ruse, not to benefit Greece as a whole, but to benefit the banks and other creditors (the ECB and the IMF) who should take their medicine and move on. The one thing keeping the whole blighted euro project in place is an arrogant denial of the facts. A loss of political face now is a small price to pay for a much better outcome that will disadvantage far fewer people than the disorganised chaos into which Euroland will descend if the current bunch of lunatics are not put back in the asylum. Is this a Europe we want to be part of?
When the going gets tough, the taxed get going and that is what Nobel Prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz thinks should happen. In a Time op-ed, Stiglitz warns (likely correctly) that if Greece continues with austerity, it would be depression without end; and so his solution is simple... "The U.S. was generous with Germany as we defeated it. Now, it is time for the U.S. to be generous with our friends in Greece in their time of need, as they have been crushed for the second time in a century by Germany, this time with the support of the troika." Strawman much?
... Greeks should be united in their fight for the rule of law and against the cleptocracy, and not divided over a referendum on an absurd question. That division, however, serves the cleptocrats well—they can go about their usual ways unnoticed. Whoever said “divide and rule” knew what they were talking about.
Angela Merkel is attempting to head off staunch opposition from lawmakers concerning further coddling of what they perceive to be a belligerent Greek government. As we reported earlier this month, the German Chancellor has been under pressure from members of her Christian Democratic bloc to essentially cut Greece loose. Now that pressure is building, leaving Merkel with the unenviable task of selling yet another Greek bailout to an increasingly hostile audience.
Many activists are clamoring for a higher minimum wage. That's an admirable goal, but is that where the worst problem is? Even at the abysmally low wages of the present moment, we still have 938,000 people being turned away from McDonald's because there aren't enough McJobs. The real problem is the lack of meaningful work. In a world of machines and social alienation, meaningful work is as scarce as water in the drought-stricken California Central Valley.
Matching the hindrances of the interventionist state is the manipulations of money and interest rates by central banks everywhere, which distorts markets, misdirects capital and labor use resulting in unsustainable booms and inescapable downturns that bring about wrongly invested capital and misallocated labor. This “wrong twists” to the market takes time to overcome and correct. It is government impediments to open, competitive markets – whether in America or in other parts of the world – that are the causes to behind slow growth and sluggish job creation, not “the rich” and their savings.
As the years have passed without Washington hearing, Russia and China have finally realized that their choice is vassalage or war. Had there been any intelligent, qualified people in the National Security Council, the State Department, or the Pentagon, Washington would have been warned away from the neocon policy of sowing distrust. But with only neocon hubris present in the government, Washington made the mistake that could be fateful for humanity.
So if you were sitting then in the turmoil of the economic upheaval and had to get on the phone to the one person that was likely to get you through the mortgage rates hikes and the jobless rates or the spiraling debt and inflationary pressure, then who would you immediately think of?
But GOVERNMENT Is the Main Problem ... and Re-Distribution of Wealth Is NOT the Answer