17 September 2014

Such a Parcel of Rogues In a Nation - Alba Gu Bràth

"For as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom, for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself."

Robert the Bruce, Declaration of Arbroath, 6 April 1320

Fareweel to a' our Scottish fame,
Fareweel our ancient glory;
Fareweel even to the Scottish name,
So famed in martial story!
Now Sark rins over Solway sands,
And Tweed rins to the ocean,
To mark where England's province stands—
Such a parcel of rogues in a nation!

What force or guile could not subdue
Thro' many warlike ages,
Is wrought now by a coward few,
For hireling traitor's wages.
The English steel we could disdain,
Secure in valour's station;
But English gold has been our bane—
Such a parcel of rogues in a nation!

O, would or I had seen the day
That treason thus could sell us,
My auld grey head had lien in clay
Wi' Bruce and loyal Wallace!
But pith and power, till my last hour,
I'll mak this declaration:
We're bought and sold for English gold—
Such a parcel of rogues in a nation!

Robert Burns, A Parcel of Rogues In a Nation, 1791

Is there for honest poverty
That hings his head, an' a' that?
The coward slave, we pass him by --
We dare be poor for a' that!
For a' that, an' a' that,
Our toils obscure, an' a' that,
The rank is but the guinea's stamp,
The man's the gowd for a' that.

What though on hamely fare we dine,
Wear hoddin grey, an' a' that?
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine --
A man's a man for a' that.
For a' that, an' a' that,
Their tinsel show, an' a' that,
The honest man, tho' e'er sae poor,
Is king o' men for a' that.

Ye see yon birkie ca'd 'a lord,'
Wha struts, an' stares, an' a' that?
Tho' hundreds worship at his word,
He's but a cuif for a' that.
For a' that, an' a' that,
His ribband, star, an' a' that,
The man o' independent mind,
He looks an' laughs at a' that.

A prince can mak a belted knight,
A marquis, duke, an' a' that!
But an honest man's aboon his might --
Guid faith, he mauna fa' that!
For a' that, an' a' that,
Their dignities, an' a' that,
The pith o' sense an' pride o' worth
Are higher rank than a' that.

Then let us pray that come it may,
As come it will for a' that,
That Sense and Worth, o'er a' the earth,
Shall bear the gree, an' a' that.
For a' that, an' a' that,
It's coming yet for a' that,
That Man to Man, the world o'er,
Shall brothers be for a' that.

Robert Burns, For a' That, 1795

Social Darwinism

"Power will achieve its murderous potential. It simply waits for an excuse, an event of some sort, an assassination, a massacre in a neighboring country, an attempted coup, a famine, or a natural disaster, to justify the beginning of murder en masse."

R. J. Rummel

"A culture that does not grasp the vital interplay between morality and power, which mistakes management techniques for wisdom, and fails to understand that the measure of a civilization is its compassion, not its speed or ability to consume, condemns itself to death.”

Chris Hedges

"In this way people are thrown aside as if they were trash."

Francis I

The Aktion T4 Programme provided the expertise, the administrative practices, and the bureaucratic rationales required to build the mass extermination facilities and the camps.

The beginning of social Darwinism is financial Darwinism, the unjust and willful allocation of means and opportunity.  This enriches the favored, and permits the oppressed to be more easily labeled as inferior, useless eaters, life unworthy of life. 

You may try to help them, but they are sub-human, and stubbornly beyond redemption.   It is a difficult task, but someone must do it.  As the superior few, we must do those hard things for the good of all. It is our destiny.  Thinning their ranks at a distance becomes easy to rationalize, and after a time a purely practical routine, like cutting the grass.

The root of it all is in the will to power, the desire of the few to determine the value of all life, and to define both good and evil, with themselves as the ultimate good.  And their handiwork is not life, but a profound emptiness, the abomination of desolation.

They never have enough. Not enough money, not enough power, not enough killing. They cannot give life, so they will bring death.  They fear weakness and death, so they attempt to be its master. They would be as gods.  And in their pride they make themselves, and all those around them, into monsters.

Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Charts - Late Afternoon Smackdown - Ball and Chain

I hope you have had the time to watch the David Cay Johnston videos I put up overnight. They will help to explain much of what is going on in the financial markets and The Recovery™.
Gold, and to a lesser extent silver, took a late day price hit after the FOMC meeting in dull trade.  I was wondering if the wiseguys were going to let an FOMC Day go by without at least a cheap shot.

I include the Comex warehouse activity for silver below. I do not believe it is particularly meaningful however.  The real action in precious metals is in the East. 

I am curious to see what is going to happen to stocks here.   The Alibaba IPO should hold them up since it is such a monstrously large snack for Goldman and the Merry Pranksters on Wall Street.

I am now looking for an indication of some traction in the precious metals more than anything else.  I think it will have to come from an exogenous source.  The US markets are thoroughly 'in hand.'  Unfortunately they are the wrong hands.

Have a pleasant evening.


SP 500 and NDX Futures Daily Charts - Hump Day

Today is Hump Day, and the humps trotted out Grandma Janet this afternoon to try and justify their serial policy errors designed to advance the well being of the Banks, and leave Wall Street in the financial desert.

All the rest was noise.

Alibaba's IPO looms in the background.  This could be a big 'home run' for the denizens of the Street.

Scotland votes tomorrow.

Let's see what happens.

Have a pleasant evening.

The Divergence Between Debt and Gold

There is little doubt that gold is 'money' in the de facto, if not official, sense. It has been so for at least two thousands years, if not longer.

In a policy regime in which the Western central banks wish to quietly devalue their currencies in concert, it would be awkward to allow gold to speak embarrassing truths.

I would like to think that now, unlike ten years ago before almost every market was shown to be manipulated and sometimes on a global scale, that a concerted effort to discredit the message that gold carries would not be beyond their capability. They certainly have the motive.

As you may recall, in 1985 Larry Summers and Robert Barsky wrote a paper on Gibson's Paradox showing the linkage between prices and interest rates, and more specifically the price of gold under a gold standard.  With the price of gold going higher, it would be much more difficult to manage longer term interest rates lower, he asserts.

We are not under a gold standard at this time.  But with the turning of central bank purchasing towards gold in 2006, with a substantial boost from Asian reserves acquisitions, the fears of the Western central bankers became paramount.  Once again, they 'stared into the abyss.'

I caution that correlation is not causation.  But it is more likely where there are independent linkages, fundamental reasons that support the linkage as it were.

And I also remind the reader that divergence and convergence run in cycles. And convergence tends to return, and often does so with a vengeance.

Brace yourselves, not so much for patience while under determined financial repression, but for the time coming when the failed schemes of today's financial engineers collapse from exposure, a challenge from the East, or from sheer exhaustion.

This chart is from the data wranger Nick Laird at Sharelynx.com.

David Cay Johnston: The Perils of Our Growing Inequality

“Wherever there is great property there is great inequality. For one very rich man there must be at least five hundred poor, and the affluence of the few supposes the indigence of the many."

Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations

This helps to explain why there will be no sustainable recovery. 

It is a matter of un-official policy.

David Cay Johnston: The Monopolists Rule

“You will even read about an insurance company owned by one of America’s most admired billionaires [Buffett] that asked a paralyzed man to die because the cost of keeping him alive was cutting into the insurer’s profits.”

“No other modern country gives corporations the unfettered power found in America to gouge customers, shortchange workers and erect barriers to fair play. A big reason is that so little of the news, which informs us about the world around us, addresses the private, government-approved mechanisms by which price gouging is employed to redistribute income upward.”

David Cay Johnston
Third World America.

16 September 2014

Scottish Independence, and the Growing Divide Between the Privileged Classes and the People

What interested me the most in this article is not so much the information it provides on the campaign by the British establishment against the Scottish vote for independence, or the eager participants from the American members of the Anglo-American power clique as well.

Rather it is for the light that this article sheds on the behavior of the enablers of the Anglo-American establishment in the corporate media and the academy, and how rarified their experience of the daily lives of the people has become. It seems almost to be due to an imbalance of character and a fashionable failure of the national perspective. Understandable for the generation that proclaims, 'greed is good.'

As David Brin has remarked, 'It is said that power corrupts, but actually it's more true that power attracts the corruptible. The sane are usually attracted by other things than power.'

I hope that whatever the result the vote turns out well for the people of Scotland. They will certainly have problems to encounter, and hardships as a people to overcome. As will we all.

There is a distance growing between the elite classes in America and England and the great majority of the people. It is palpable in the economic policies in the aftermath of the financial crisis.

I am always surprised by how little those pampered princes and princesses within the Beltway or Westminster seem to understand about their own people.  What a caricature the communication and occasional interactions between them has become. Such distance breeds both mistrust and fear. It is becoming a cultural divide. And not just for the leadership itself, but for their vast assemblage of courtiers and sycophants who act as viceroys and interpreters for them.

It does not bode well for the future.

The Guardian
How the media shafted the people of Scotland

Journalists in their gilded circles are woefully out of touch with popular sentiment and shamefully slur any desire for change

By George Monbiot
Tuesday 16 September 2014 15.03 EDT

Perhaps the most arresting fact about the Scottish referendum is this: that there is no newspaper – local, regional or national, English or Scottish – that supports independence except the Sunday Herald. The Scots who will vote yes have been almost without representation in the media.
There is nothing unusual about this. Change in any direction, except further over the brink of market fundamentalism and planetary destruction, requires the defiance of almost the entire battery of salaried opinion. What distinguishes the independence campaign is that it has continued to prosper despite this assault.
In the coverage of the referendum we see most of the pathologies of the corporate media. Here, for instance, you will find the unfounded generalisations with which less enlightened souls are characterised. In the Spectator, Simon Heffer maintains that: “addicted to welfare ... Scots embraced the something for nothing society”, objecting to the poll tax “because many of them felt that paying taxes ought to be the responsibility of someone else”.
Here is the condescension with which the dominant classes have always treated those they regard as inferior: their serfs, the poor, the Irish, Africans, anyone with whom they disagree. “What spoilt, selfish, childlike fools those Scots are ... They simply don’t have a clue how lucky they are,” sneered Melanie Reid in the Times. Here is the chronic inability to distinguish between a cause and a person: the referendum is widely portrayed as a vote about Alex Salmond, who is then monstered beyond recognition (a Telegraph editorial compared him to Robert Mugabe).
The problem with the media is exemplified by Dominic Lawson’s column for the Daily Mail last week. He began with Scotland, comparing the “threat” of independence with that presented by Hitler (the article was helpfully illustrated with a picture of the Führer – unaccompanied, in this case, by the Mail’s former proprietor)...
Read the entire article in The Guardian here.