Tags: Banker Bailouts

Did the Bank of England Admit Financial Markets Aren’t “Real”?

On a day witnessing such tremendous financial market volatility, this seems like the perfect story. The Bank of England has announced an “Open Forum” to be held on November 11, with the title: Building Real Markets for the Good of the People. No, I’m not making this up.

Here’s a screenshot from the BOE website:

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We have to “build real markets?”

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JP Morgan Hires Recently Retired U.S. General, Raymond T. Odierno

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How can you ensure that the interests of TBTF Wall Street mega banks and the military-intelligence-industrial complex remain aligned? Create a revolving door of course.

This is a trend I’ve been following over the past several years. Below are a couple of notable examples:

Video of the Day – General Wesley Clark Suggests Putting “Disloyal Americans” in Internment Camps

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David Petraeus – How This Leaker of Classified Information is Peddling KKR Funds as Opposed to Serving Jail Time

Now for the latest. From the Wall Street Journal:

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Introducing the Gigantic and Dangerous Wall Street Loophole You’ve Never Heard of

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This spring, traders and analysts working deep in the global swaps markets began picking up peculiar readings: Hundreds of billions of dollars of trades by U.S. banks had seemingly vanished.

The vanishing of the trades was little noted outside a circle of specialists. But the implications were big. The missing transactions reflected an effort by some of the largest U.S. banks — including Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley — to get around new regulations on derivatives enacted in the wake of the financial crisis, say current and former financial regulators.

The trades hadn’t really disappeared. Instead, the major banks had tweaked a few key words in swaps contracts and shifted some other  trades to affiliates in London, where regulations are far more lenient. Those affiliates remain largely outside the jurisdiction of U.S. regulators, thanks to a loophole in swaps rules that banks successfully won from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in 2013.

Many of the CFTC employees who were lobbied in these meetings went on to work for banks. Between 2010 and 2013, there were 50 CFTC staffers who met with the top five U.S. banks 10 or more times. Of those 50 staffers, at least 25 now work for the big five or other top swaps-dealing banks, or for law firms and lobbyists representing these banks.

The lobbying blitz helped win a ruling from the CFTC that left U.S. banks’ overseas operations largely outside the jurisdiction of U.S. regulators. After that rule passed, U.S. banks simply shipped more trades overseas. By December of 2014, certain U.S. swaps markets had seen 95 percent of their trading volume disappear in less than two years.

– From the excellent Reuters article: U.S. Banks Moved Billions of Dollars in Trades Beyond Washington’s Reach

The following story is guaranteed to make you sick. Once again, we’re shown that following trillions in taxpayer funded bailouts and backstops, TBTF Wall Street banks immediately went ahead and focused all their attention obtaining loopholes in order to transfer risk and make billions upon billions of dollars in the financial matrix, as opposed to adding any benefit whatsoever to society.

From Reuters:

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Pentagon Plans to Boost Drone Flights 50% as Bernanke Warns Cutting Defense Spending Could Hurt Economy

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In the event you were becoming concerned that the U.S. government might be backing away from its longstanding policy of endless violence, militarism and bloodshed, fear not. If we know one thing for sure, it’s that defense contractors and the military-intelligence-industrial complex must earn. And continue to earn it will.

So despite the Air Force having a hard time finding pilots for its drones, the Pentagon still plans to ramp up drone flights by 50% over the next four years.

We learn from the Wall Street Journal that:

The Pentagon plans to sharply expand the number of U.S. drone flights over the next four years, giving military commanders access to more intelligence and greater firepower to keep up with a sprouting number of global hot spots, a senior defense official said. 

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American Food Banks Struggle to Keep Up Amidst “Surprising” Demand

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Food banks across the country are seeing a rising demand for free groceries despite the growing economy, leading some charities to reduce the amount of food they offer each family.

U.S. food banks are expected to give away about 4 billion pounds of food this year, more than double the amount provided a decade ago, according to Feeding America, the nation’s primary food bank network. The group gave away 3.8 billion in 2013.

While reliance on food banks exploded when the economy tanked in 2008, groups said demand continues to rise year after year, leaving them scrambling to find more food.

Lisa Hamler-Fugitt, executive director of the Ohio Association of Food Banks, who has been working in food charities since the 1980s, said that when earlier economic downturns ended, food demand declined, but not this time.

From the AP article: Food Banks Struggle to Meet Surprising Demand

It’s an economic recovery so robust, food bank demand has increased every single year during it.

It’s an economic recovery so robust, people running food banks say they’ve never seen food bank demand increase during a recovering economy. Ever. Except this time.

It’s a fraud. The entire thing. This recovery has been a mainstream media meme used to cover up what is really happening: oligarch theft.

But don’t take it from me. From the AP:

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Chart of the Day – Americans are NOT Happy

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Readers of this site don’t need me to tell you, but the following statistics from the Wall Street Journal prove that despite record stock prices and non-stop propaganda, fewer and fewer people are believing the hype.

We learn that:

On a benchmark measure of Americans’ unease, 65% of those surveyed said the country is on the wrong track. That is the highest level of unease since November 2014, and nears the levels seen at other historical moments of voter discontent.

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American Oligarchy – 400 Families Represent 50% of Money Raised by 2016 Presidential Candidates Thus Far

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Ever since I started this website in 2012, one of my primary objectives was to convince readers that the American system of government is nothing like what we are told in school and via the oligarch-owned mainstream media. That the country has become so captured and corrupted by sociopathic oligarchs, that a neo-feudal modern serfdom was emerging where the opportunities to enjoy rising standards of living for the vast majority of people was rapidly becoming a pipe dream.

I think many readers appreciated my warnings, but it wasn’t until an academic study from Princeton and Northwestern came out and factually proved it, that it become undeniable to many people. Here’s a brief excerpt from that post titled, New Report from Princeton and Northwestern Proves It: The U.S. is an Oligarchy:

Despite the seemingly strong empirical support in previous studies for theories of majoritarian democracy, our analyses suggest that majorities of the American public actually have little influence over the policies our government adopts. Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association, and a widespread (if still contested) franchise. But we believe that if policymaking is dominated by powerful business organizations and a small number of affluent Americans, then America’s claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened.

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Santa Cruz County Votes to Cease Doing Business with Five TBTF Mega Banks

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This is impressive. Very, very impressive.

It appears that Ryan Coonerty, the Supervisor of the Third District of Santa Cruz County, wrote a letter back in June to the rest of the Board of Supervisors, in which he bravely pleaded the county cease business operations with five of the TBTF Wall Street Mega Banks. Why you ask? Well, because they are criminal felons. Considering Eric Holder refused to punish them (see: Cronyism Pays – Eric “Too Big to Jail” Holder Triumphantly Returns to His Prior Corporate Law Firm Job), someone has to take a stand.

Here are a few choice excerpts from the letter:

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A Message to the Peasants – Jeb Bush Says Americans Need to Work Longer Hours

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Over the past several years, as the U.S. economy has transitioned more and more into a corrupt oligarchy, we’ve seen an increase in statements by certain members of the so called “elite” class, in which they condescendingly lecture the average American. The message is always a variant of, “you need to work harder,” or “prepare for tough times ahead.” Of course, there’s never any reference to the fact that the entire U.S. economy has morphed into little more than a rigged fraud, intentionally set up to result in the current neo-feudal environment we see before us.

I first picked up upon this trend after witnessing a disgustingly ignorant appearance by real estate mogul Sam Zell on CNBC. It prompted me to compose a lengthy post titled, An Open Letter to Sam Zell: Why Your Statements are Delusional and Dangerous. Here’s an excerpt:

Your misdiagnosis of the root cause of the current dissent in America is a result of your obliviousness to the actual concerns of the 99%. A group about which you speak with such certainty, yet certainly know almost nothing about. In fact, my website is dedicated to highlighting all of the destructive trends happening in this nation today. From record high food stamp participation, to declining real wages and the reality that young people need to take on so much debt they become indentured serfs from the moment they enter the workforce. From a loss of 4th Amendment rights due to illegal NSA spying, to the militarization of the police force. From oligarch immunity from serious financial crimes that average citizens would be thrown in jail for life for, to trillion dollar bailouts with zero strings attached for the financial community. From the over-prosecution of some of our bravest citizens such as Aaron SwartzBarrett Brown and Private Manning to a fraudulent two-party sham political system entirely controlled by your socio-economic class.

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JP Morgan to Pay Another Slap on the Wrist Fine for Engaging in Systemic Consumer Credit Card Debt Fraud

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Just yesterday, I published a post titled: Florida Man Sentenced to 2.5 Years in Jail for Having Sex on the Beach. The purpose of that post wasn’t to justify his actions, but rather to highlight the difference between how average citizens are treated under the U.S. “justice” system, and how thieving, remorseless financial oligarchs are treated.

While, Mr. Caballero may have ruined the day of a few beach goers by crudely having sex on a public beach in broad daylight, he didn’t run the U.S. economy into the ground and cause destitution to tens of millions of Americans. Nor did he received trillions in taxpayer backstops and bailouts, only to turn around and pay himself a record bonus and then carry on with extremely profitable, illegal financial schemes. No, it was the bank executives who did (and continue to do) all of that. Guess who ends up in prison?

And now, for the latest financial scam perpetrated by JP Morgan, as well as the insignificant slap on the wrist fine, I present the following from Reuters:

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