The Grand Inquisitor

Tyler Durden's picture

Via Mark J. Grant, author of Out of the Box,

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
                     -Ferris Bueller, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Sometimes you just have to sit down and stop. ...
Greece and the grand machinations of the European Union came to mind as it occurred to me that all of the fine points aside; Greece had become a ward of the State, that the debt was unpayable and everyone knew it, and that all that had been accomplished was to hand them more money, add more debt and to couch it all in complicated phrases with ingenuous fantasies of surpluses to come which is the game initiated by Greece and picked up now by the EU. The math doesn’t even add up so it can be said that it was a poor attempt at hide-and-seek but I suppose it was the best they could do given their skill-set these days. Whatever had lingered from German exactness and precision has faded into a management where each problem is dealt with by handing over more money and where facts are maligned and sculpted by political expediency. Yes, there are attempts at austerity, more controlled budgets and the like but, in the end, more money is thrown about as there is not a leader in Europe that is prepared to confront any other solution.
“Ford, you're turning into a penguin. Stop it.”
                   -The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
As you watch the antics of the politicians in Spain you realize that they are first cousins to the Greeks. Prime Minister Rajoy and his merry band of henchmen are playing the same tunes as we have all heard before. The reasons that Spain has not come begging for alms yet is not too complicated. They don’t want to be audited by the Troika, God forbid, they want no one peering at the actual state of their Real Estate market, they don’t want anyone but paid flunkies examining their banks and they want the EU/ECB to buy their bonds, give them money and lower their interest rates like some kid in Madrid awaits for Santa Claus. They might get away with it too except for the IMF which is held to different standards, not too much different these days, but not quite the ones to be found in Athens, Lisbon or Madrid.
Los cupones de alimentos se detendrá inmediatamente eficaz porque recibimos aviso de que falleciera. Que Dios los bendiga. Usted puede volver a solicitar si se produce un cambio en sus circunstancias.
[Your food stamps will be stopped effective immediately because we received notice that you passed away. May God bless you. You may reapply if there is a change in your circumstances.]
Spain is now going to take the EU money to recapitalize their banks. This means they will lay off about 60% of the people of the troubled banks in Spain. They are also going to set up a bad bank which will be have an actual value of maybe 55% of what they claim given the Real Estate conditions in Spain. The sub debt holders and the preferred holders of these institutions will take part of the losses. Any thoughts that the two major Spanish banks will not be affected by all of this is a late night fantasy accompanying the drinking of too much red wine. The Spanish economy, bad now, is going to get worse and the unemployment figures; much worse. The government, much to their dismay, is going to be forced to the wall and the auditors will march in and their “dynamic provisioning” exposed for what it is, fiddling with the books, and the recent history of Athens will be replayed in Madrid as the Spanish Prime Minister declares it a “Great Victory for Europe.”
“A brick falling from your hand to the ground may be a great victory for gravity but it may also be a great travesty for your foot.”
                                           -The Wizard
The European Central Bank
The ECB will save the world subject to the decisions of Europe’s political leaders. Saving the world is a good thing and keeps getting promised by virtually every religious leader for the past several thousand years. Just do this and do that and pray a lot and ask for divine guidance and surely we will all be saved. The ECB will hand out Euros, toss them with wild abandon in the streets of Paris and Madrid and fling them from the cathedral roofs in Europe if directed by their Holinesses in Brussels. As Spain is just about to take the indulgence and as the standards are set for piety and religious observation; the second Spanish Inquisition is about to begin and the zealot may be found wanting.
The Spanish chronicler, Sebastiande Olmedo (Chronicon magistrorum generalium Ordinis Prædicatorum) calls Torquemada "the hammer of heretics, the light of Spain, the savior of his country, the honor of his order". Perhaps Senor Barroso will welcome him back but perhaps not; Fray Tomas de Torquemada, the Grand Inquisitor.

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mrktwtch2's picture

this should be bullish for the dollar..dump your gold before it hits 1400..

CPL's picture

You let me know when that happens.  If it hits 1400 I'll be in there with a nail on a stick to hold my place in line to buy gold at 1400.

MillionDollarBonus_'s picture

The ECB has a range of tools for stabilizing the union:

  1. Insure all European bonds so that bond holders cannot lose their investment in the event of a default. This will also render Credit Default Swaps worthless, punishing people for betting or insuring against European instability.
  2. Convince the European commission issue Eurobonds and monetize this debt as part of an on-going asset purchase program
  3. Buy European bonds directly at the offerings, putting downward pressure on yields and allowing governments to invest in their economies

However, these solutions will only work if managed by economic experts. Each of these options requires diligence, courage and immense economic sensitivity and experience. Mediocre planners simply aren't up to the job.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Weak MDB.  That's a whole lot of paper promises you have there.  Too bad the laws of Nature and physics don't give a shit. Speaking of Nature, people need to eat and I grow soybeans, now pay me in gold bitch.  You can keep the fucking promises.

MillionDollarBogus_'s picture


Paper promises..??

We use paper to represent money because hauling gold and silver in our pockets doesn't work.

Tell your employer or customers that you want to be paid in PM and see how that works for you.

PM is a relic of the past.

Winston Churchill's picture

Actually I have two clients paying me in gold,MDB.

I'm a traditional sort of guy.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Already have.  Actually paid a plumber in silver last year for running some sewer lines.  Sorry, did you have a fucking point?  Address the issue of moral hazard and so much of this fixes itself.  Maybe it's inconvienient, but when the puchasing power of all the other fiat currencies is continually gamed by a realitive few idiots (like yourself), you really aren't giving people much choice now are you dipshit?  let's see, put the fruits of my real labor into paper, where the paper-pushers steal the value or into something of physical value where I can monitor and control it's safety?  No brainer really.

Lebensphilosoph's picture

A relic of the past, like freedom, liberty, productivity, culture ...

Lebensphilosoph's picture

Since when does paper represent money?

Modern paper doesn't represent anything.

Lebensphilosoph's picture

Governments and ... THEIR economies?


No wonder your ramblings stink as they do.

Joe A's picture

And this will be backed by what exactly? I guess the earnings, savings and taxes of future generations of Europeans predominantly those living in Ger, NL, Fin, Aus?

Dr. Engali's picture

If gold hits 1400 I'm backing the truck up and adding to my positions. I hope you're not in stocks if it does because that means the S&P will collapse down to 1000.

Glitterbug's picture

O ye of little faith!  

 The fractional reserve system has allowed the western banks to dominate the world with its access to money printing, and the Insurance Companies have followed suit, insuring 9 times more in value than they have reserves to cover.

Using this same system, Greece will borrow 10 Billion € from Germany and put this in their central bank.

Of course, with this high quality collateral, (and using the fractional reserve system money multiplier) they can lend out €90 Billion, just like the high street banks.  €10 Billion will go to each of the other PIIGS, who of course can now use this cash as 100% guaranteed deposit to also lend €10 Billion to each of the PIIGS and still retain some lending power. When all the PIIGS have done this, they will pay back all the existing French and German banks with this money, which must be good, because it originated with a loan from Germany!

Now, what was the problem? Even I with my simple PhD in Computer Science can follow this fraudulent Economic clusterflux!

CPL's picture

Fight large debt with more debt.  Just like turning underwear inside out and declaring it clean.

SheepDog-One's picture

'Don't worry, the ECB will just hand out Euro's'....wait, how is this any different than anything in the last 4 years? All we've been doing is handing out money from banks to banks. 

I am Jobe's picture

How about in the USSA. Turn off the EBT and the Odumba Phone and see the difference.

Smartphone use must be limited to 1 hr per day. Next wave of Regulation on its way.


darteaus's picture

Extend and pretend - same EU & US game since 2007.

youngman's picture

You are right they do not want anyone to look into their books.....that is the key...god forbid the truth....lying is so much easier

darteaus's picture

It's not just easier - if they audit the books the game is over.

TideFighter's picture

These am walkdowns are very close to 1pt, 1min. 

stormsailor's picture

not much trading info on this site anymore, but the 50% retrace just got busted on /es


THE DORK OF CORK's picture

The EU does not give out money

It gives out debt.


I now see this as a now "free to choose" external oil capital moving from pillar to post trying to find a return when there is none.


The rise of Turkish energy consumption and decline of Greek energy consumption is a case in point.

Turkey is the favoured child because it is being given ( now being taken away ?) oil to pay off the interest in the debt it is being given.

Greece cannot pay the debt because it is starved of oil capital from which it can grow to pay the exponential debt.


But there is no money......... in the state meaning of the word.

Money is no longer intrinsic to these former nation state hinterlands........

They must grow or die.

The money cannot be printed 

Therefore the money cannot flow as there is none !!

LawsofPhysics's picture

Don't sweat it, humanity itself is an unsustainable ponzi.  Hedge accordingly.  There is no such thing as "sustainable growth" of any single entitie or organism in a complex and finite world.

THE DORK OF CORK's picture

But the banking credit money system must destroy what exists so that other areas can grow.


A real state crediting its state systems with treasuary money would mean the system would find a new balance.



Greece for example has / had ? a rail system of sorts.

Much of this was closed down to pay a debt that cannot be paid.

Turkey has until recently little rail.

Instead of using the resourses at hand in Greece from which state money could flow this all powerful external (with now full executive power over former nations ) capital closes down one railway to build another...........

For what ?

A return on capital which is disappearing because of the above non state actions.

This is the global market state nightmare.


The Euro engine essentially builds these massive capital projects and then refuses to give the money tokens so that people can use them.

How do you know which is a efficient use of capital if the money tokens are not available for use ?

LawsofPhysics's picture

Money is an illusion used by a realitive few to maintian power and control.  It has been this way since the dawn of "civilization".  Societies that allow fraud to bceome the status quo and fail to insist on monetary systems that insure real consequences for bad behavior  always implode.

The world has always been at war and people (all over the world) are smart enough to look around and determine if there real labor has resulted in increased purchasing power and an improved quality of life.  If they can't get satisfaction in the "official" bullshit rent-seeking market, they will find it in the black market.

Same as it ever was, sorry, did you have a point?

skbull44's picture

NOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition! Our chief weapon is surprise...surprise and fear...fear and surprise.... Our two weapons are fear and surprise...and ruthless efficiency.... Our *three* weapons are fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency...and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope.... Our *four* *Amongst* our weapons.... Amongst our weaponry...are such elements as fear, surprise....

firstdivision's picture

Get ready for another invasion of a country that went of the petrodollar due to false flag evidence.

chubbar's picture

Fascinating new video revealing new facts and clues on 911 for those truthers and seekers of truth out there.

Lord Peter Pipsqueak's picture

Unless you go to Spain,especially the Costas,nobody has any real idea the size of the Spanish banking problem.A few years ago,a work colleague filmed the hillside view of the coastal building projects from the course he was playing on.

To pan his camera across the horizon took several minutes and in that time, as you can imagine,there was just mile after mile after mile of new houses,apartments and holiday villages being built.Literally hundreds of thousands of properties all built and financed on the assummption of close to zero interest rates,ever rising property prices,and an endless supply of greater fools prepared to pay an even higher price than the previous mug.And that was just one small region,multiply that by the whole of Spain.,Murcia,+Spain&gl=uk&ei=LTq2UIiiB6S80QWNmYDIDQ&ved=0CJMBELYD

The losses on these properties are still not properly reflected in Spanish bank accounts,this is the real nightmare the ECB has to monetise,and obviously,it is being delayed until it has to.

The time will come,but the old battered can has to receive many more kicks before that happens.

walküre's picture

The European problems are bigger than the currency and debt crisis. The financial problems are merely symptoms of a disease that started when bureaucrats and politicians started the greatest economic central planning model of all times. Adding insult to injury, the worst of this program started right after the collapse of that other centrally planned model which was one epic fail. The Soviet Union fell apart after 40 years of grand scheme politics by the apparatschicks in Moscow with far reaching consequences from East Berlin to Vladivostok.

How could the Europeans forget the failures so quickly? The cultural gap is HUGE. It cannot be mended with a bureaucracy that's giving marching orders from Brussels and Strasbourg to every citizen across the continent. One thing the citizens of all EU nations have in common is their disgust and disrespect for the EUROCRATS in Brussels.

It will fail and it's gonna blow up, break up and collapse. The SU failed and eventually collapsed for the same reason.

This is NOT a union, it is a CAGE where citizens are forced into a STRAIGHT JACKET.

Maybe I'm not an expert on all things cultural in Europe. But I know people and there's only so much people are willing to put up with. It was the people of the former Soviet Union which eventually said they had enough. The state had failed despite all the propaganda and oppression. The EU has rammed their propaganda of "the EU and Euro, a fun filled experiment the whole family can enjoy" down the throats of all citizens in every language for years now. The oppression is slowly starting with Greece and Spain. It's a done deal. The EU experiment is failing and will only be able to offer 3rd world quality of life to many.

As time goes, people will realize this and emigrate to North and South America because that is where their ancestors went before them. We will soon see a new wave of mass immigration from Southern Europe first, followed by Northern Europe later.

The Chinese are currently taking over any German industry that suits them. They're buying the sources of innovation and technology. The IP will get transfered to China as soon as it's developed in Germany and eventually, the shops in Germany will close as the Chinese have managed to complete the transfers. The Chinese aren't pro EU or pro EURO. They are experienced in running a centrally planned economy and they understand what happened to the Soviets will happen to the EU. The Chinese are just taking advantage of the crisis before anyone takes notices. Knowing full well that the Europeans are pre-occupied with their financial mess. Once the union breaks apart and each nation will focus on their own assets and resources, the Chinese would get the door shut in their face.

The lack of a homogenous people makes it impossible to survive long term as a political union. The Chinese are still struggling with Tibet and other outposts which they cannot seem to control. But they have no problem controlling over a billion people with the same heritage.

Ghordius's picture

+1 for the "Maybe I'm not an expert on all things cultural in Europe"

just out of curiosity, is your rant against the EU or against the EZ governments that are bailing their peers out?


btw, WTF has Torquemada to do with the whole article? I fail to see the connection. A bit of anti-catholic sentiment or weak humour?

The writer could at least have mentioned the Spanish-American War to denigrate Spain better... oh, wait, forget about it

walküre's picture

My rant is against the ideology of central planners who think they can determine the lives of people that are far removed from them. I've done plenty business in Europe to have seen the gradual changes across pretty well every industry and the effects of a centralized bureaucracy in Brussels.

You can't fart in Germany without being told by Brussels how long to fart. I imagine the same goes for every other place in Europe. It's the Soviet experiment all over again and it will fail just the same. Pretending something is working when it's not, doesn't make it work. Makes no difference if you put billions into a propaganda effort to try and convince people that it works.

The Greek bailouts are part of a propaganda effort imo. They need to show Europeans that the system works. They don't care about the people in Greece. They care about the (German) banks because letting Greece fail and saving the banks is much harder to explain! Eventually they will stop caring about the banks also and keep up appearances at any price because the admission of failure would have their heads on a plate.


Was the Spanish Inquisition widely popular among the Spaniards? Maybe the writer is expressing the same sentiments as I was. That as soon as you have a "foreign" authority taking control and oppressing the people, the propaganda (war) is lost. People generally do not accept foreign oppressors as their Kings unless they were beaten badly into submission and had to declare a complete and absolute capitulation in front of the entire world (see Germany). Makes sense to me.

Ghordius's picture

look, usually your rants make sense, to me. but I'm still quite at loss what that "central planners" means

and I don't recognize much semblance between your EU and the one I know

perhaps you could make an example for that "You can't fart in Germany without being told by Brussels how long to fart"?

do you seriously count bailouts as "billions into propaganda effort"? if you would bail out "your stupid brother-in-law" how would you call it? a bloody nuisance, yes, but family propaganda? to put it differently, who do you think is being lied to?

and what is, in your opinion "the plan" around the EUR, really?

because there are quite a few I do know, but I'm not sure you are talking about those

Most of them are around the theme of "WTF do we do in the next currency war - we are a pack of rats and King Dollar is a terrier, and the last skirmish was very painful". Note that currently it all starts between China and the US


Disclaimer: I visited the US only once, for a week (NY,NY). But I knew the Soviet Union quite intimately, and I've travelled some 100+ countries quite extensively in the Old World


good one! The Inquisition, here we come...

walküre's picture

mostly this stuff:

Operating according to "norm" was a nuisance before the EU took over. Now it's just a bloody nightmare. Just ask any farmers across Europe.

Do you like duplicating efforts and paying twice for the same oversight? That is what the EU is. It is one gigantic paper tiger. We complain about the Goldman Sachs squid and the far reaching tentacles. The EU commissions that were setup to oversee, regulate and police all sectors of the European economy are equivalent to the Soviet dictatorship. It just smells better.

To answer the question, what "their" plan is with the single currency, one has to establish first who "they" are. The players that brought you the single currency are the same players that created the Fed. Are they really interested to develop a contestant to the Dollar reserve currency status and hegemony? Maybe their plan is to replace the Dollar because America has been raped and pillaged blind and there is so much Dollar denominated paper out there that cannot be serviced. In other words, their plan could be to blow up the Dollar and then repeat the same with the Euro after they're done raping and pillaging the citizens of the EU.

Who benefits? Where does the money go? The Greek bailouts are a pretty good case example of where the money goes. It doesn't reach the Greek people. It is used to service existing debt. The money goes straight to the lenders a.k.a. banks. Why the run around?

What's your understanding of Target2? There's a one trillion Dollar trade imbalance that Germany can never collect on. The books are balanced but the funds never get paid. Who does that and why?

Ghordius's picture

- operating according the "norm". German Industrialists invented that, and nearly all european producers, big, medium and small are keen on that

this is something I'm quite intimate to, pick a product worth producing here - i.e. "quality", usually, and I'll bring the story

- the EU. nothing moves in the EU without the clear permission or request of the heads of governments, you know that? it's still more like a shared agency or ministry than a confederation, and for sure not the federation or the federal state some paint

- contestant for status and hegemony. well, some French would say: Mais Oui! But the others? No.

As I wrote above, it's about "WTF are we supposed to do ....?" Are you familiar with the 1968-1971 timescale? The EuroGold in NY? The european central banks coffers full of greenbacks that were supposed to be exchangable with gold? What would you have done - or do now?

One small part of the EUR project is a success: in it's sheer size, it's less "bouncy". Remember Stabeeleetee? At least up to now it's holding. In the part of the currency war for which it's designed.


I make a difference between the currency and it's parasites. And I make a difference between the (mostly) AngloAmerican parasites of the Dollar and the EUR (and all others) and the local parasites of the EUR, which are mostly banks that can be nationalized - something we european find a more tasteful solution than what happened in the US during the crisis (that started the whole skirmish). call it capitalism for the masses

there are many plans from many sides

Target2 is shocking, at least for me. One trillion is what the EU spends in seven years. It's also 1% of the EU area's GDP. No, the assuption that this is going to be paid by taxpayers is sound. Germany can book that loss under "Reunification Expenses".

But the fight, here, it's to have the taxpayers pay for what politicians spent on. distasteful, yes, but that's the plan

the fight in the US is around defining who the taxpayers are supposed to be to pay on what bankers and politicians spent on, or perhaps savers should pay the bill?

in both cases savers will pay some, and we think we have a chance to weather the storm.

it's decades we are thinking about that, you know? we never forbade gold, remember? The EUR is the child of this old worry

walküre's picture

Agree with your many points. Consider that there are two sides to the Stabeeleetee

Greece, Italy, Spain and France are suffering because of the stability. These candidates used to inflate their problems away with either currency reform or devaluation. That is how they stayed competitive AND affording their politicians the promise of more and more welfare. You know that politicians don't get elected if they behave like Scrooge Magoo. They get elected because of their promise to spend.  

Remind me when was the last time Germany elected a leader who declared "wir müssen die Gürtel enger schnallen"...

The financial collapse started within the US. No doubt about that. Was Greece a Trojan Horse designed by the Goldmänner to blow up "on time" when necessary? Remember they were instrumental in cooking the Greek books and getting Greece funded to the point where Greece can never repay the loans it took on. Then appointing a former Goldman agent to the head of ECB is just another confirmation of who is running the show there.

Would Germany sell less machinery, cars and trucks and ships etc if they still had the DM? I doubt it. Germany would have the strongest currency as it should. Less industrious nations like Greece or Spain would benefit from their softer currencies. The Spanish real estate would be priced in Pesetas which could get devalued quite simply, the country would be suffering a short period of time but once the currency is in the crapper the French, Germans, Brits and so on would gobble up cheaply priced Spanish real estate. The system would be allowed to work.

Despite their softer currencies, the Greeks or Italians would still be ahead of the Africans where they make alot of their deals. If you price all the wares in Euro, the less efficient or less innovative producers are suffering.

The question today is who is stupid enough to defend the Euro across the continent in its current form and who is brave enough to pull the plug, go back to a real drawing board and come up with a clear solution that works for all.

Ghordius's picture

yeah, the two sides is best seen in the "periphery" experiencing deflation. which is painful, I agree.

but is this not the recipy for sanity out of the Austrian School? eventually efficiency has to be achieved, or you go the way of the dodo

deflation, or better, dearth of money (for frivolous expenses) is the faster, more painful way to adjust - short of raising rates, which is not possible thanks to the FED's ZIRP (remember how the ECB under Trichet tried to keep at least 1% more? carry trade galore)

but consider this: without the EUR, we would have 17 freaking currencies, how many currency pairs it would make? and all the currencies currently pegged to the EUR would also be in the open running for cover

small currencies, fragile pairs, perfect targets for speculation, particularly for the supercharged children of the banks, the hedge funds

so here, we would be back to a currency grid, like last time - or we would experience a partial disruption of the eurozone supply lines - which would then shift those lines to Asia

I maintain that defending the EUR is the smart way, for now

indeed, the EUR is behaving like a softer version of gold, here. think about that


the Squid might or might not have designed the Greek Trojan Horse, I'm still unsure about that. it would tie with US pressures on the UK joining the ECC, then, or US pressures in having eastern countries (including Turkey) joining the two clubs

as all meddling in foreign affairs, it can result in unexpected consequences, though

nevertheless, Draghi needs the votes of 17 quite political central bankers, so his position is not really comparable with Bernanke's

remember that continental europeans see their banking systems as national assets, most of the time, nationalization is always in the cards

Joe A's picture

What happened to SU and what can/will happen to the EU can also happen to China. China is also centrally planned and just like in the SU people one day might have enough of the fact that the politburo elite and cunning business people in China get all the gravy and the people none. The mistake that China made/makes is that they don't have a middle class that is big enough and rich enough to create a stable society. What China fears the most is the potential of millions of hungry and angry peasants. The advantage that China has though is that as a centrally led communist country they don't give a fuck about killing millions. Mao didn't care.

Whether it is the US, Europe or Asia: we are all pretty much screwed.

Joebloinvestor's picture

I have been yelling that for a long time!

Treat Greece for the charity case it is and it would be better for the EU.