Largely out of the headlines, the ongoing protest on Standing Rock is shining a bright light on how the big-moneyed interests with political clout steamroll the disadvantaged in order to get what they need.
But in a rare David-vs-Goliath standoff, the Sioux tribespeople of Standing Rock Reservation are learning that they are not powerless. Their refusal to roll over and allow an oil pipleline to be built on their lands is growing into one of the largest resistance movements in recent years, drawing supporters from all over the country, and forcing the discussion of "Where do we draw the line?" in regards to our pursuit of depleting natural resources.
The statistics offered by the government and the FED are not to be trusted. We’ve long known that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) is manipulated in ways that are intended to mask the increases in the true cost of living for the average American. The same is true of the unemployment numbers. Amidst all the happy talk of economic recovery, wages (in real terms) continue to decline and debts continue to mount up. Charles Hugh Smith in his recent post, What If We’re in a Depression But Don’t Know It?, provides some eye-opening charts and convincing narrative that makes it plain that economic depression is the current reality for all but the top 5%.
But it’s not only the U.S. that is in trouble, the depression is worldwide. The financial crisis of 2007-2008 was only the beginning of what some call “the great unraveling” There are any number of commentators that provide further arguments on that score, including Thom Hartmann (The Crash of 2016) and Gerald Celente.
But no one besides myself is pointing out the underlying cause of all these problems. It is the monopolization of credit by a banking cartel, in collusion with top government officials, that creates money based on interest-bearing debt, a formula that centralizes power and concentrates wealth in the hands of what Hartmann calls economic royalists.
By their control of the monetary machinery they are able to lavishly fund weapons, war, and the global corporatocracy, while making money scarce for everyone else. Further, this system is not sustainable because the interest burden causes debts to grow continually with the passage of time. Central governments have assumed the role of “borrower of last resort,” to keep the money supply pumped up and the banks from failing. This cancer has metastasized and the end is near. –t.h.g.
- Harvard Endowment drops 2% in 2016, worst since financial crisis
- The Elite Solution: Three New Ways To Get Inflation
- What The Fed And BOJ Decisions Mean For Markets
- Do Robots Dream Of Wealth?
- Can a Police-Misconduct Lawsuit Lead to Reform?
- Why Oil Prices Can’t Stay Low For Much Longer
- Mothballing the World's Fanciest Oil Rigs Is a Massive Gamble
- Puerto Rico Blackout Enters Second Day - Entire Island Of 3.5 Million People Without Power
Those familiar with my writing know I put the word “markets” in quotes because we no longer have a financial system where legitimate price discovery is a regular -- or even recognizable -- feature.
It's destined to fail. What more can be said about such a flawed system?
Well, a lot as it turns out.
And failure to pay attention at this stage of economic and ecological history will prove to be exceptionally painful.
- Why the debt market is the powder keg that will blow things sky-high
- The most dangerous asset bubbles to watch and avoid
- The implications of a collapse in the bond market
- Where will money then go?
The big problem with central bank policies, besides driving the largest wealth and income gaps in all of recorded history, is that they’ve massively deformed the financial and economic landscape.
Too-cheap money has distorted just about everything, and has badly warped corporate incentives. There’s literally no place one can look and not find an economic or financial distortion. “Gains” (such as they are) have gone to holders of financial assets, and corporations have opted to buy back their own shares and to not re-invest in property, plant, equipment or people.
All of this will work right up until the day it doesn’t. And then we'll experience a financial and economic crisis likely to be the largest we ever live through.
And these distortions are not only everywhere, but they are all at record levels. As in never higher in human history.
Just looking at the corporate data alone ought to scare the pants of off every investor on the planet. As the chart below makes clear...
- 44 Hours Of Saturn
- The Pros and Cons of Living in an Income-Sharing Commune
- Man who lived as a goat and Swedish fly collector among those honored at Ig Nobel science awards
- The Paris Agreement Is One Step Closer To Reality
- Meet the Fruit: Aronia, a “Superfood” Native to the American Midwest
- Gardening as a Kid Indicates that You’ll Eat Fruits and Veggies as a College Student
- UN fears third leg of the global financial crisis - with prospect of epic debt defaults
- Dallas Police Pension On Verge Of Collapse As Record Number Of Cops Seek Full Withdrawals
- Jim Rogers: ‘Central Banks Are Losing Their Power…Thank Goodness'
- Canadian Mint employee accused of smuggling $180K of gold in his rectum
- Moscow says attempts to accuse Russia of aid convoy attack are 'outrageous'
- The Three Stages of Empire
- Has Real Estate Hit Its Peak?
- Long Term Consequences Of The Oil Price Crash
- Bayer-Monsanto deal 'danger for our food': French chefs
In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and Axel Merk discuss:
- Fed In A Box
- At this point, stalling is Yellen's only option
- Boneheaded BOJ
- Now trying to undue the damage of its recent NIRP policies
- Blind To Bubbles
- Central banks are unwilling to admit they're the cause of the problem, not the solution
- Bad Policies
- Capitalism is getting destroyed (and a bad rap) by central banks run amok
In the wake of the closely-watched announcements by the BOJ and the Federal Reserve, Chris and Axel sit down in this meaty discussion to pick through the particulars of what this week's announcement mean. In a world where everything hangs on the decisions of an elite few central banks, this is one of the more important podcasts we've released in a while.
Community gardens and urban agriculture projects are a powerful way for people to connect with others for healthy, enriching experiences in their neighborhoods. We've long covered people changing their community with the power of gardening, so we invited our readers to share their photos and stories about their community gardening experiences. Some of the organizations we've written about have also generously contributed new images from their gardens.
Photo: ResoluteSupportMedia (CC-BY)
- RETIREMENT CRISIS: Millions have NO IDEA how they will pay bills in old age
- CalPERS forecasts funding gap could grow to $9.2 bln in 15 years
- US building up to pension crisis
- Gulf budget deficits to peak this year
- Monte dei Paschi's shares, bonds hit by worries on emergency plan
- Nigeria Plans N4.72 Trillion Stimulus for Troubled Economy
- Is China Building a Road to Ruin?
- Deutsche Bank Goes to Crisis-Era Well
- Chinese debt "three time above danger zone"
- The big question of Kenya's piling debt
- Comptroller: NY student loan debt hits $82B
- New Report Outlines Higher Education’s $2.7 Billion ‘Debt Bomb’
- Debt and Death Bind Chicago as Emanuel Seeks to Bolster Cops
- China's first debt-to-equity swap plan approved
- China Risks $375 Billion of Shadow Banking Losses, CLSA Says
- Buyers keep faith in Chinese province seen as test of debt tolerance
- Canadian household debt bigger than national output
- ECB corporate bond buying hits record pace
- Markets Have Become More Dependent on Central Banks, Says BIS
- Calstrs to Miss 7.5% Return Goal for Third Straight Year
- German savings banks expect 500 mln euro hit from negative ECB rates -sources
Photo credit: Participatory Budgeting Project.
In 2014, Shareable profiled 15 participatory budgeting (PB) projects that put financial decision making into the hands of communities. At the time, there were an estimated 1,500 PB programs around the world. In the two years since, PB has skyrocketed in popularity with an estimated 3,000 projects worldwide.
- Bitcoin is money, U.S. judge says in case tied to JPMorgan hack
- China Facing Full-blown Banking Crisis, World’s Top Financial Watchdog Warns
- That $100,000 Painting Bought to Flip Is Now Worth About $20,000
- How I Rewired My Brain To Become Fluent In Math
- General Motors pledges 100% renewable power for its facilities by 2050
- Report: We Only Have Until 2035 to Get Rid of Gasoline Engines
- U.S. Signals Backing for Self-Driving Cars
- Can Solar-Powered Floating Art Save California From Drought?
European Commission building, Brussels. (Andrew Gustar / Flickr)
Realizing that the sharing phenomenon is changing how citizens live, the European Union has begun to address the sharing economy's regulatory challenges at the multi-national level.
This month, Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), a nonprofit membership organization that promotes social responsibility in business, released a report outlining how sharing economy companies can achieve, “a more meaningful uptake of collaborative marketplaces among lower-income and underserved populations.” The report recognizes the potential of the sharing economy to increase access to goods and services and help people earn and save money.
In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and Becca Martenson discuss:
- Boomers Have Everything To Lose
- They cling to status quo to deliver promises made in the past
- Millennials See Nothing To Gain
- The future they're being asked to inherit appears bereft of value
- Bridging The Generation Gap
- How to replace strife with support
- The Importance Of Mentoring
- An age-old model need perhaps more now than ever