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melv
22 Nov 11 07:02
Joined:
Date Joined: 19 Feb 06
| Topic/replies: 4,753 | Blogger: melv's blog
All our governments are doing is trying to let us down easy and let us down slow. Its happening hard and fast isn’t it.

The most dirt poor, raggy @rsed, corruption ridden country in the world is doing a good job of defeating batman and Robin; the UK / US partnership in Afghanistan; at war.

On radio 4 this morning. US analysts announce that the American dream is over. Future generations no longer doing better than the past and the trickle down model of society; let the richest 1% run off with all the pies and the crumbs will make us all rich; never ever worked and cannot work.



An exciting announcement has been made. The answer to the debt crisis is th enable first time buyers to borrow more and get on the housing ladder. Isn’t this were we came in? Which bit of debt crisis is not understood here.

Soon our police  and the EDL will be violently attacking peace demonstrators who are just trying to get us to wake up see what’s going on and looking for a totally new way of living together.

Please lets have some quality fors and againsts this argument. Any good books vids internet sites?
All our governments are doing is trying to let us down easy and let us down slow. Its happening hard and fast isn’t it.

The most dirt poor, raggy @rsed, corruption ridden country in the world is doing a good job of defeating batman and Robin; the UK / US partnership in Afghanistan.

On radio 4 this morning. US analysts announce that the American dream is over. Future generations no longer doing better than the past and the trickle down model of society; let the richest 1% run off with all the pies and the crumbs will make us all rich; never ever worked and cannot work.



An exciting announcement has been made. The answer to the debt crisis is th enable first time buyers to borrow more and get on the housing ladder. Isn’t this were we came in? Which bit of debt crisis is not understood here.

Soon our police  and the EDL will be violently attacking peace demonstrators who are just trying to get us to wake up see what’s going on and looking for a totally new way of living together.

Please lets have some quality fors and againsts this argument. Any good books vids internet sites?
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Report wykhamist2 November 22, 2011 9:33 AM GMT
I have to agree that this idea of trying keep the housing bubble inflated through providing govt help to first time buyers is just barmy. The only thing that will help first-time buyers is if the price of houses is allowed to fall. No government wants that because of all the folks suddenly finding themselves with negative equity.

The big change in how capitalism works in the last 30 years is indeed how the elite have basically been allowed to completely rip off the middle and lower classes. Hislop's programme tonight ('When Bankers were Good') will hopefully highlight this. Greed and lack of morals have undermined the fabric of society.

The real anomaly in the markets at present is the fact that UK Govt bond yields are at a historic low, even though we have made no progress whatsoever in reducing our deficit (let alone debt) and have no credible growth. I can only assume that yields are surely going to rise with a vengeance before too long. Once that happens I can only pity any first-time buyers who were daft enough to enter the housing market now.
Report melv November 22, 2011 9:48 AM GMT
Soon our police  and the EDL will be violently attacking peaceful demonstrators who are just trying to get us to wake up see what’s going on and looking for a totally new way of living together
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 2:19 PM GMT
Bringing all this down to a more personal, identifiable situation, why don't a few on here who are part of the so-called middle and lower classses, give up some specific, real life examples where they feel they have been ripped off by the so- called elite ?
I don't feel elite and I don't feel ripped off thank you very much.
That is not to say that I don't look on in disgust at the antics of certain individuals who have clearly unproductively taken advantage of things without there being any serious accountability for their greedy, anti-social activities, but that's not really saying that I've been ripped off in any particular, harmful way.
I still feel streets ahead in personal wealth and comfort that any of my preceding generations.
Report Menelaus November 22, 2011 3:21 PM GMT
The scheme is nothing more than another stealth bailout of an insolvent banking system. It's a page out of the US playbook. It didn't work in avoiding a housing market collapse there, it won't work here, but it did manage to divert more public money on bank balance sheets.

The money passed on to the bankers will of course need to be borrowed, since it can't be created through organic growth. From the same bankers that are being bailed out. Then they can pay the bankers back with interest through austerity or through currency debasement. And since real austerity will bring the political/financial system down, violence and blood in the streets, your poison has already been chosen for you. It's print, print, print, there's no Plan B.

Hyperinflation.....this is how this ends. Most people can't see it, the same way most people can't see beyond a couple of a moves ahead in a chess game. That's what separates novices from grand masters.
Report melv November 22, 2011 3:25 PM GMT
Why does it need to be personal. What is the rlevance that you are ok to the unemplyed and all thise to who cuts are having a impact on. Are you trying to say that all those millions are better off than ever?

The pont of the thread is not that things ar bad ATM its that this is part of a premanent downwrd slope. We have been living off borrwed money for a while now. Even if we come up with some scam to get us all boorwoing more agian eventually it will be pay time and the will be few whoar all right jack and fine as as frog hair.

I am happy for you froggy. but the fact that you are feeling fine tells me nothing much else.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 4:17 PM GMT
What's the relevance of the fact that the whole world has essentially been living beyond its means, to the assertion that a so called elite has been ripping off the lower and middle classes ?
Let us all just be responsible for our actions.
No one forced us to have our credit cards, buy our new cars every couple of years, have a couple of PCs, have an ipod, eat far too much junk food, etc etc.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 4:46 PM GMT
I read an interesting little point the other day on the current Italian debt crisis.
Apparently an average Italian car worker assembles 17 cars a year, whilst a Polish one assembles 100. Yet the Italian worker is paid 3 times as much as the Polish one.
How could that be allowed to happen.
To me it reeks of gross macro economic mismanagement, which is not, however, the same as saying that the whole concept of capitalism is wrong and doomed.
These sorts of economic imbalances have to be corrected by whatever means necessary.
Austerity programs obviously being one part of it.
It doesn't have to all end in hyperinflation turmoils as the likes of Menelaus keep saying.
Btw he is apparently part of the so-called elite that you complain are ripping us off.
Why would you therefore now listen to and believe in his assertions ?
Report Menelaus November 22, 2011 5:12 PM GMT
melv, the system is failing......because it was designed to fail from the outset. The bankers know that, the public evidently still doesn't.

Money is created as DEBT.

Debt is a claim upon future GROWTH.......that is what the interest is.

Exponential growth is needed in the current monetary system to pay the coupon. That's how compounded interest gets paid.

The minute real organic growth stops, the system collapses. The government in order to prolong the status quo......BORROWS ON YOUR BEHALF whether you like it or not. This kicks the can down the road for a while. The problem being that this kind of borrowing leads to malinvestment, capital misallocation and more debt that can not be serviced. Accelerate the rate of the demise by the madness of morphing that debt into 40 or 50 times the money in an ever increasing pyramid of debt, layer on top of that the disappearance of cheap oil which inhibits real growth, and...........boooooom, the ponzi system collapses onto itself.

This is where we are at now, it's just that most people haven't clued in yet.

Hyperinflation.....is how this ends. What confuses people are the bouts of deflation in between.

This stuff is not rocket science FFS.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 5:45 PM GMT
It beggars belief that someone as aparrently knowledgeable as Menelaus can really say and believe such a crass statement as the system was designed to fail from the outset.
This simply ignores all the intellectual debate and consideration of the whole matter that has occurred from all sides of the political perspective.
The bottom line is that the system can work but that it does go off the rails periodically.
At these times the key factor is to not panic , but to identify the reasons and over time correct them.
If this means temporarily supporting or favouring certain sectors of the economy ( eg the banking sector as but one example) to varying degrees at various times, then that is what needs to be done.
The most important thing is that the identified required structural changes to the whole system are also simultaneously made an implemented.
No pain no gain.
Menelaus is an intellectual bore and is not really contributing one iota to correcting things in a constructive manner. His negativity is exceedingly unnecessary and unhelpful.
I just hope that his type is very much in the minority in the corridors of power.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 5:58 PM GMT
And as I've said before, Menelaus has clearly missed his calling.
He should be a financial commentator of the Fox cable network.
Maybe a liile cameo role on the Glen Beck show ?
Report Menelaus November 22, 2011 6:07 PM GMT
I can see his lips moving but I can't hear what is saying.....what a relief.

The bottyful froggy is carpet bombing the forum again with what must be his usual nonsense. The usual comical, uniformed, and stupid tirades about how "we'll muddle through" I'm sure.

Not everybody gets it.

Not everybody *can* get it.

If everyone did get it, we wouldn't be in this mess we are in right now the first place.

Some people were just born to be fodder.
Report Banwana November 22, 2011 6:29 PM GMT
I have to say I enjoy reading Menelaus's diatribes. Its like reading a financial diary similar to Castro's Revelations on capitalism. Is M is a Maoist? FF has a point though. Life is too short to take the entire worlds problems on your shoulders. Your general feeling appeaers to be that delusion is the only option.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 6:57 PM GMT
I enjoy the Glen Beck show also, but only if I only catch up with it occasionally.
My only real problem with Menelaus is perfectly put by him by a phrase in his last post.
" --- carpet bombing the forum again --- "
A perfect description of what he, not me, is actually doing.
I just wish I could fathom his agenda in all this.
Does he actually want the world financial system to collapse in a heap ?
It would seem to me that he apparently does.
To what gain ?
Some personal financial play he has in place ?
Report Menelaus November 22, 2011 7:29 PM GMT
Banwana, you are confused.

What I'm pointing out is that the delusion is what you've been living.

A standard of living built on the back of a monetary ponzi scheme, an unsustainable pyramid of debt and cheap oil, all of which most ignorant lemmings thought would never end.

What's coming is reality.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 7:36 PM GMT
In fact relating to my last post on Menelaus' motives in all this, perhaps I could ask one of you other posters following this debate to act as a proxy for me, and pose the following specific question to him.
How does he recommendo monetizing his theories ?
That is, how best can you turn his theory into some sort of reasonable risk diversified financial play ?
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 22, 2011 7:42 PM GMT
Btw his arrogance is getting seemingly worse day by day.
Most of the world is now apparently composed of ignorant lemmings no less.
That would of course include quite a few nobel laureates in economics in the mix.
Pretty asttounding stuff coming from some relative minnow in the financial world.
Anybody heard of David Price 111 ?
I believe that is his somewhat pretentious moniker.
Report Coachbuster November 22, 2011 11:19 PM GMT
No one forced us to have our credit cards, buy our new cars every couple of years, have a couple of PCs, have an ipod, eat far too much junk food, etc etc.
____________________

Junk food is actually very cheap -  Wink
Report melv November 23, 2011 2:21 PM GMT
No one forced us to have our credit cards, buy our new cars every couple of years, have a couple of PCs, have an ipod, eat far too much junk food,

People did not need to be forced. They are sold these things. IMO free choice does not come into it.

It is in human nature to be herd animals no such thing as free choice.

If you have not fallen for any of these inducements it is purely becouse some other social forces caused you to have a different life style as indeed I do; because of my rather extraplanetary upbringing. Nowt to do with freedom of choice.
Report Banwana November 23, 2011 5:57 PM GMT
Not forgetting that he can be a right bitch sometimes. Laugh
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 23, 2011 8:55 PM GMT
Well life can be a bitch sometimes that's for sure.
You know I keep looking at that phrase " The decline and fall of western capitalism ".
Talk about hyperbole.
Do you folks really think that way about current economic events ?
If so, what a way to approach day to day living.
I don't know how you can actually get out of bed.
I would think you must all be paralysed with overwhelming fear.
Report melv November 23, 2011 10:08 PM GMT
I would think you must all be paralysed with overwhelming fear.

You may well think that. I wonder why though.

I for one just take an interest in the world around me for good and ill. If the big crunch is coming; and indeed when it does come; then it would be better to anticipate it than to be buried in paralysing fearful optimism.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 23, 2011 10:15 PM GMT
Each to his own I suppose.
I find my personal life improves with optimism and conversely.
And I don't mean unrealistic optimism btw.
Report cush November 23, 2011 11:39 PM GMT
Money is an inert substance. It does no harm to anyone, in itself. How can it? It is inert.

Left alone with it, for long enough,though, it does expose people, for what they really are.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 23, 2011 11:59 PM GMT
" Money is an inert substance ".
What a strange thing to say.
I would say that it has very, very active dynamics.
Makes the world go round you might even say simplistically.
Report melv November 24, 2011 7:49 AM GMT
I find my personal life improves with optimism

I find my life orgasmic when I anticiptate and prepare for the the worst and everything turns out fine.

"Everything wil turn out fine" is surely optimistic to the point of delusion as far as the economies of the west are concerned.

In the long term we are all dead.
Report Menelaus November 24, 2011 12:51 PM GMT
melv, you are missing the point. When you have no wealth to lose, "everything *will* turn out fine".
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 24, 2011 1:09 PM GMT
I just make sure my wealth advisers are a little less one eyed than the likes of Menelaus.
I certainly would not be optimistic with only Menelaus in my corner.
He would be a useful counterweight, but that's all at best.
Report FINE AS FROG HAIR November 24, 2011 1:34 PM GMT
You see Menelaus displays on here ( at least) one major character flaw that imo would make him a particularly poor, and almost dangerous, portfolio adviser.
He seems to have a desire, almost a need, to claim or prove that he is incontrovertibly right in not only interpreting past and current events, but also in predicting future ones.
Now to the best of my knowledge nobody has ever been that good, particularly when it comes to future events.
He has an informed opinion on things. But it is only one of many good alternative ones out there.
His types of fundamental views should certainly be intelligently incorporated into any portfolio for certain.
I am doing that, but hopefully correctly in the right order of weighting.
I'm not positive I've got it totaaly right, time will tell, but I'm certainly positive that I'm right not to apply a 100% in favour weighting to Menelaus' expressed opinions on here.
Report TheInvestor2 November 25, 2011 2:03 AM GMT
An interesting thing to note is the difference in growth rates of wealth of say the top 1% versus the bottom 90% of the global population.

As the combined wealth of the population grows, an increasingly large part of this wealth is concentrated at the top.

This is what's been happening over the last few decades I'd say. Look at 'rich lists' and you see that the combined wealth of the top grows much faster than the average wealth.

It's in the interest of 'the rich' to make sure the basic needs of the rest of the population are met. If this isn't the case, they cannot function as well in society and in their jobs, and there is a risk of rioting and eventually revolution.

Once people's basic needs are met, as they are in Western Europe (and in the US too with the notable exception of health care), there is little stopping the effect that occurs naturally in a capitalist society for wealth to become concentrated.

Menaleus mentions debt is a claim on future growth.

The same could be said of stocks, land even intellectual property.

I'd say that laying claim to future growth in one way or another is the primary way to get rich. If you are a successful entrepeneur, you may be creating the growth you lay claim to.

Striking a balance between giving people enough incentive to produce, and making sure that the maximum benefit goes back to society and becomes available to all, is an interesting puzzle.

Looking at the US, I think the political system is extremely unhealthy. Political contributions and lobbying come together to create what some see as a legal form of bribery.
Report TheInvestor2 November 25, 2011 2:29 AM GMT
wykhamist, good post at 22 Nov 11 09:33

I've come to the conclusion that various measures supposedly designed to help the hard up (like first time buyers), really end up lining the pockets of the rich.

In some European countries it is still possible to claim tax back on mortgage interest payments. This has the effect of increasing the affordability of home ownership, pushing up home prices, meaning people take out larger mortages, and pay more interest. The final effect is that affordability has not improved.
This 'great deal' to 'stimulate home ownership', just means the banks make more money.

That's not to say it doesn't work, the average person would be happier with a 3% wage increase with inflation at 3% than they would be with a 2% decrease in wages with 3% deflation. So perhaps these little 'tricks' do work.

------------------------
It's pretty much a given that politicians do what is politically expedient rather than what is best for society. For me a utopian society would be one where political expediency and interests of society as a whole converge.

In the '90s 79% of economist polled agreed with the statement:
The government should restructure the welfare system along the lines of a negative income tax.
http://gregmankiw.blogspot.com/2009/02/news-flash-economists-agree.html

The stuff that actually works, is politically infeasible. If we did have some kind of global collapse, the good news is that society can be restructured in a more efficient way Crazy
Report melv November 26, 2011 10:24 AM GMT
It's in the interest of 'the rich' to make sure the basic needs of the rest of the population are met. If this isn't the case, they cannot function as well in society and in their jobs, and there is a risk of rioting and eventually revolution.

Once people's basic needs are met, as they are in Western Europe (and in the US too with the notable exception of health care), there is little stopping the effect that occurs naturally in a capitalist society for wealth to become concentrated.


The elephant in the room is who defines what people's basic needs are. I will not except any measures of this from the rich themselves or their technocrat lackeys.

I for one have very inexpensive basic needs. I read a lot; I have inexpensive hobbies that I am very good at. (Gambling not being one)and I absolutely love my job. I hvae no car and I wouldn't give a t0ss if I need had another foreign holiday. But I do not expect other people to live as I do. Infact up to the age of 40ish I needed loads more money as having a good time when you're young is much more expensive.

Therefore satifying basic needs is easy to say and means nothing in reality. Unless you are reffering to slavery where the owners bother to keep there salves healthy.
Report melv November 26, 2011 10:25 AM GMT
I wouldn't give a t0ss if I never had another foreign holiday
Report Menelaus November 26, 2011 4:33 PM GMT
Okay, let me get this straight. People are wondering why wealth is concentrating in the hands of an elite few when we've given the banking cartel the ability to print money out of thin air, lend it at compounded interest and demand hard assets as collateral. What's next, astonishment that the apple falls to the ground from the tree?
Report TheInvestor2 November 26, 2011 11:45 PM GMT
If there was no banking cartel it would still happen, though to a somewhat less extreme extent.

melv, interesting book would be the classic 'progress and poverty' by Henry George if you haven't read it.
http://www.henrygeorge.org/pdfs/PandP_Drake.pdf
Report Menelaus November 26, 2011 11:55 PM GMT
I have a feeling your meaning of the word "somewhat" is entirely different than mine.
Report TheInvestor2 November 28, 2011 12:31 AM GMT
Well the vast majority of the global population spends what it earns (and sometimes a bit more besides).

I read an interesting book a while ago: the mystery of capital by Hernando de Soto.

He basically argues that in places like Peru, Egypt and Haiti, the poor suffer from a lack of access to debt money. They sometimes own their home, but this is on an 'informal' basis. No documents held by government, no notary etc. They can't borrow against their property. If they could, they could use the funds to set up a business etc.

He basically argues that access to debt funds is a human right!

It makes sense if you read about Grameen bank which helps poor people by providing them with microcredit.

People weaving baskets, working at the starvation point, can live relatively comfortably if they can just get access to a small amount of money (even £10) to buy their own materials. This will never be possible without a loan or an investment, because there is never any money to save (this is by design to keep them dependent on the exploiters)

Imagine if banking was nationalised. The profits would make taxes unnecessary! Then again, anything run by government tends to be woefully inefficient, so I'm not sure what's best really.
Report TheInvestor2 November 28, 2011 12:34 AM GMT
^
retail banking that is.
Report melv November 28, 2011 11:47 AM GMT
Many many thanks. I will read this and I will be rereading my Stienbeck.


"Take now... some hard-headed business man, who has no theories, but knows how to make money. Say to him: "Here is a little village; in ten years it will be a great city-in ten years the railroad will have taken the place of the stage coach, the electric light of the candle; it will abound with all the machinery and improvements that so enormously multiply the effective power of labor. Will in ten years, interest be any higher?" He will tell you, "No!" Will the wages of the common labor be any higher...?" He will tell you, "No the wages of common labor will not be any higher..." "What, then, will be higher?" "Rent, the value of land. Go, get yourself a piece of ground, and hold possession." And if, under such circumstances, you take his advice, you need do nothing more. You may sit down and smoke your pipe; you may lie around like the lazzaroni of Naples or the leperos of Mexico; you may go up in a balloon or down a hole in the ground; and without doing one stroke of work, without adding one iota of wealth to the community, in ten years you will be rich! In the new city you may have a luxurious mansion, but among its public buildings will be an almshouse."

1879; the left needs to remember what it once already new. Before it gets too much worse.
Report TheInvestor2 November 28, 2011 3:32 PM GMT
Glad you like it melv, it's a great classic that is vastly underappreciated.

It's still relevant today.

I think the sale of council houses in the '80s (and ongoing) under the right to buy scheme is at least partly to blame for high house prices today. Take a country like the Netherlands, where the income per head is higher than the UK, and the rents are lower. In cities like Amsterdam, the Hague, Rotterdam and Utrecht, around 50% of the homes are low-rent and owned by non-profit private housing foundations.

The problem is that what the UK government did in the 80s was massively popular despite being incredibly bad. Effectively, they made a portion of those living in council houses far better off, at the expense of future generations of low earners and of course the public (with the council renting privately at £1000 a week to give a home to a family and other similarly ridiculious solutions).

As the wealth of the community increases, rents rise to soak up a large part of the excess, as Henry George says. That's why having a large social housing stock means that a large portion of this rise in wealth will be to the benefit of the public.

I like the books of Milton Friedman a lot, but he believes in a very 'pure' form of capitalism. I think the system of capitalism with a large social element used in countries like Sweden and Holland, is massively better than the 'purer' form of capitalism practiced in the US. The UK is probably somewhere in between the two.
Report sean rua December 18, 2011 9:20 PM GMT
A great thread!
Thank you all very much.

Today I read elsewhere that
" there are 6000 bankers and financiers listed at the same address in the Cayman Islands."

Is this true?
If so, would some of these be the same folk who were involved with our debt problems?
Report cush December 24, 2011 12:44 AM GMT
First came the printing of money.

Once that seemed to be accepted by the majority.....Then came the taxation....., of the printed money, ….but only for certain people.

Then came the printing of more money to pay the taxation. A burden, that was , again, only placed upon certain people, and with that came the inflation.

Which part of that formula do you not understand?
Report cush December 24, 2011 1:00 AM GMT
Money is not the problem at all. Money is an inert substance. It can do you no harm.

The people who currently control money, without accepting any responsibility for their action's, because the know that they can bail themselve's out by just printing more, they, are the real problem.
Report Menelaus December 24, 2011 8:02 AM GMT
Really?
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