The archive is catalogued by 'Economics', 'Politics', 'Mockingbird', 'And in other news' and 'Thoughts on other things' 

MarkGB 

"Who controls the food supply controls the people; who controls the energy can control whole continents; who controls money can control the world" - Henry Kissinger

and yet...

"Sooner or later everyone sits down to a banquet of consequences" – Robert Louis Stevenson

The Four Hoarse Men of the Apocolibs

It seems that the latest scourge of the western world, at least for people still trying to explain away the defeat of Hillary ‘Two Flops’ Clinton…is 'fake' news. Broadly speaking this consists of any and all propaganda and misinformation put out by evil Russians for example, and lapped up by right wing nut-jobs, left wing nut-jobs and all white people over the age of 55 who live in a state without a coastline, who voted for Donald Trump.

I cannot stress enough to anyone reading this blog that there is a distinct possibility that anything or everything written here may be regarded as ‘fake’ news by someone or the other – particularly people who trust their governments and newspapers to provide them with 'the truth’.  To those people I say this: If thousands of years of history have led you to that conclusion, you may be wasting your time here.

I have no undeniable verification for many of the points I make – nothing that I could put into a test tube and take to the United Nations as proof of weapons of mass destruction, for example.  I have no electoral mandate, and no ‘Mission from God’ like 'Big George' and 'Little Tony'.  Indeed, depending on which philosopher you believe, if you believe any of them, I may not even exist. How fake is that?

But to anyone who is wondering how to distinguish between 'real' news,  'fake' news and 'no' news, personally I rely on this:

1. A highly developed sense of smell

2. A habit of paying attention

3. The ability to notice disparity between what’s being said and what’s being done

In short – I make up my own mind.

***

And now for something completely different...

In other 'fake' news this week there is absolutely no truth in the rumour that Martin Wolf, Philip Stephens, Gideon Rachman and Edward Luce are leaving the FT at the end of 2016, after getting everything spectacularly ‘wrong’,  and nothing remotely ‘right’ this year.  A spokesman for the four announced that there is nothing unusual about that, and indeed they will not be put off by events that fail to comply with the ‘liberal elite' narrative.

On the contrary it seems that our heroes: ‘The Four Hoarse Men of the Apocolibs’ are planning a turnaround in their fortunes in 2017, after this year’s dismal run of results in elections and referendums…a year in which democracy produced the 'wrong' answer at every turn:

“Next year will be different” said their spokesman Tarquin Clench…”there are a number of key elections coming up in France, Netherlands and Germany, and the chaps aim to get their candidates across the line first in all three, even if they have to sully themselves with the centre right in France.  The tide is turning - 2017 will go down in history as ‘Media Wars – the Narrative Strikes Back’

Let me be clear – I have known the spokesman in question since he ran the Tuck Shop at Eton, and there is no way that a pork pie has ever passed his lips.  I think we can safely say that any rumours of the chaps joining the priesthood, the Brotherhood, or even going to work for George Soros in the ‘Open Society’ are entirely false.  No, the four hoarse men will ride again in 2017…of that we can be certain.

***

As we approach the year-end, it seems like a good time to give you my current take on the ‘War against Cash’.  Some of you will remember (what am I talking about?) that I wrote a number of ‘War on Cash’ pieces, starting in May 2015 with ‘Vol 1 - Blame the Nannies’ through to February 2016 ‘Vol 10 - Larry Summers again’.  

First the bad news – cash is being slaughtered.  Now the good news – in a stunning example of the ‘Unwitting Lazarus Manoeuvre’, Prime Minister Modi of India is doing his best to use his ‘War on Corruption’ to spark a popular uprising against him and his gang of government thugs, who are breaking down doors and 'confiscating' cash & gold from citizens…normal folks who for decades have been obliged to keep the stuff lying around at home, not least because the government officials that they have to bribe to get anything done don’t take credit cards…

Needless to say this little episode of governmental betrayal of its own people will provide more grist to the mill of 'evil populists' everywhere…who despite the widespread disinterest of the mainstream media, will eventually find out what this little rat of a Prime Minister is really up to…via the medium of the Internet of course.

I can only add that personally I never trust a man who keeps his facial hair that neat.  Such preoccupations inevitably lead to hubris – see Ben Bernanke and/or Noel Edmunds for further clarification.

So…liberty is down but not out…and on that note I leave you with a little ditty I posted to the FT in February this year, before this blog was up and running.  It's a ‘Mockingbird’ piece that highlights the absurdity of two governmental ploys – NIRP and the ‘War on Cash’. I hope you find it amusing, and please notice that the warning at the end is just as relevant now as it was then:

“Central Banker – can I interest you in theft Mr Smith?”

In response to an FT 'Big Read' by Robin Wigglesworth and Leo Lewis on 17th February 2016, entitled 'Central banks: Negative thinking'

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/7333e92a-d4a2-11e5-829b-8564e7528e54.html#ixzz40Sz2Axz9

Here's a proposition from your friendly Central Banker and his chums at Eye, Screw, Ewe and Larf, PR Consultants to the elite:

Central Banker: Mr Smith, you can have a definite £100 to spend now, or a possible £95 in a year's time - which is it to be? 

Mr Smith: What do you mean a possible £95 in a year's time?

Central Banker: Well, while the money is in the bank it isn't actually yours; it's a loan to the bank upon which you have a claim; it appears on both sides of their balance sheet as an asset and a liability, dreadfully clever stuff

Mr Smith: Well surely that means I can have it whenever I like?

Central Banker: Normally yes, but if the bank goes bust, it'll be their money at that point, it's technical but essentially you'll get bailed in. The derivatives people will get their money first, but the bank will get round to you eventually, so yes you'll get something...probably

Mr Smith: So let me see if I've got this right - I'm paying you guys £5 for the privilege of possibly losing up to and including the other £95

Central Banker: Well I wouldn't put it that way

Mr Smith: Well I would put it that way, give me my money I'm taking it home

Central Banker: Excellent, you want to spend it now, jolly good for aggregate demand and all that

Mr Smith: No - I want to take it home, keep it until I want to buy something, then spend it

Central Banker: You can't do that I'm afraid; we have a cashless society now - Larry Summers wants to protect you from terrorists and drug dealers.

Mr Smith: Well you can tell Larry Summers to go...(fill in the blanks to your own liking dear readers)...

John Stepek, the editor of MoneyWeek coined a splendid phrase for negative interest rates in an article last week (In February): "The weaponisation of compound interest". 

Here's a more traditional one - theft.

There is no way on earth that a free market would ever result in negative interest rates. If anyone had asked you ten years ago if you'd stand for this - you'd have said 'no'. The fact that this seems almost normal to many people is an indication of just how insidious these moronic policies are. We are like frogs in a pot being boiled alive 1 degree at a time. Time to get out of the pot before we're all too drowsy to notice.

I think Münchau has left the herd

You cannot solve a problem until you are willing to speak its name