The end of business as usual …

Life is good for many of us, so that it’s hard to confront the change that is here, and with that the inevitable end of the quality of life that we see around us.

So it strikes me as obvious that the world is going down a road, in some ways where civilizations have gone before, but not for the same reasons, we are in fact going down a one way road, to the destruction of what is, that we have come to consider as normal.

The reasons are self evident, they come back to greed and the need for ever more growth, leveraged growth, more .. more …  all are unsustainable flawed strategies –  I ask you how can one achieve continual growth in a finite world … this insatiable need for more … we have been all living in a fantasy land, especially the Politicians, who are convinced as they focus on statistics and spin, that they are doing a great job when all around, their citizens are paying the price for their inability to have a real original thought – their incompetence, their lack of leadership, their focus only on re-election, their terror at the inevitability of change – drives them to makes nice little touches around the edge of policy whilst the heart of the country decays and we lumber forward, down the wrong path.

This insatiable greed of a few, has brought us beyond the brink of a global financial meltdown, we are in fact toppling over the edge into oblivion as we speak … whole countries and regions are already suffering in the Euro zone, but the whole world will be within the inevitability of what is to come … our mindless pursuit of the status quo .. has indebted the majority of those in the present to virtual serfdom whilst those in control … known colloquially as the 1% .. but who are in reality probably more like just 10,000 people around the word, are so afraid of change that they have convinced our Politicians (who are only driven by the need to be re-elected) that they need to maintain the status quo, this flawed and failed financial structure – which has little benefit to the majority 99+%, except more of the same. 

It is time we allowed the system to fail, we no longer have the ability to prop it up –  we have to stop, mortgaging future generation to pay for our mistakes or steal their birthright … our beautiful home, this spaceship called earth.

When I walk around cities, I see the crumbling structures, both in stone and in systems that are struggling to maintain what we once were, I see lots of papering over the cracks, whilst the infrastructure rusts and crumbles away in silence.

Within the decade we are in, what is hidden now, will become visible to all, in the first instance with the failure of the Euro$, where whole governments are desperately trying to hang on by their finger nails … they will fail … the inevitable collapse will spark a world wide financial meltdown that has never been witnessed in history. In the United States, cities and states are even now technically bankrupt … what will happen when the Euro zone of some other key point in the chain fails .. the banks will fail … there can be no bailout .. change will be here –  this global correction will affect everyone in every country, those who think they are immune are living in fantasy land – this new reality will inflict misery and unrelenting hardship on everyone.

It will not be fun … in fact I cannot see an upside in the short term … it may take a couple of decades perhaps a generation before we can get back on our knees … maybe as long as a 50 years to a century before we can stand up and face the future with any sort optimism … the only way we have any chance of a future, is by changing what we value.

The OWS … the Occupy movement is a symptom, and a necessary one …. in American the Constitution has been and is being continually being walk into the mud, whilst those in power seek to silence those who would say … we have a problem .. sadly, the world economy is past the ability to be healed … change is here Ladies and Gentlemen, hang on, because we are in for the ride of our lives, the destination, the abyss … some of us will come out the other side … but very few … for us to survive, and have the capacity to we will have to have the ability to think outside of the box and really work together without agendas, and realise that economies are not about numbers … they are about fully utilizing all of us, for the benefit of all of us ….

I have spoken of this before back in between 2008 and now … then it was a warning .. now it is too late … money will be irrelevant to our future … the accumulation of wealth for its own sake, is now past its use by date … when it happens, from then on, and in the short to medium term, the only thing that will matter is being able to be sustainable in food, in shelter and energy …

Good Luck …

Bonuses – This looks like a good idea

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Now with the European Union likely to legislate to specify how bonuses will be paid, for instance a large benefit is only able to have a 20% cash bonus… I am sure the affected people are even now re-structuring their pay to counteract this… perhaps by increasing the fixed component of the pay package…

In the United States it seems is not going to legislate, but issue guidelines… which I am sure that they will be bent, sidestepped and outright broken as a result.
However staying in the USA for a moment, something new has come to my attention…. a new basis for paying bonuses… as we know once of the companies, formerly a major casualty of the sub-prime fiasco and their own corporate greed at that time, has come up with what I believe is a solution… that Compensation for those who receive bonuses should be tied more closely to corporate debt rather than equity… what a resounding good idea, as well as responsible one… how unlike a Corporation.!

I am speaking here of AIG (American International Group) who announced that it will link incentive pay to the value of their insurer’s bonds.

This makes cowboy activities less likely, especially as a short term tactical strategy, and I hope this will turn the train around and move it back to responsibility not only to the company, the industry but also the shareholders – but also to the Corporate world in general.  I believe that these types of incentives protect the interest of bondholders and the ultimate value of the company… this will come to be a good strategy especially in uncertain times, and more particularly when a company’s solvency is in question.

Perhaps the rest of the world, particularly The European Union as well as all markets affected by this disease should take notice

A view of the USA, today

Currently with all the necessary hype, the compromises and the deal making, the senate looks as though they will pass the unemployment support and Health assistance as per the following link from USA today… but again we come back to the essential problem that we have with the USA, if they were a person they would be accused of a felony as they are writing unfunded cheques.

Who owes the US debt ?  China, Saudi, Japan..!  I guess I have said enough.

With the disclosed long term liability of the USA sitting at in excess of Ten(10) Trillion dollars and the Un-disclosed amount , probably ten times this. The USA is in all sorts of a mess.

Currently instead of an lessening of the unemployment rate, we have the USA getting worse, see the figures below (an extract) and the link to the Wikipedia information here

European Union European Union 9.3
Burma Burma 9.40
India India 9.50
Croatia Croatia 9.60
Hungary Hungary 9.7
United Kingdom United Kingdom 7.80
United States United States 9.70
Russia Russia 9.9
France France 10.0

So much for the USA doing something constructive to resolve their problems, instead of concentrating of the income issue and increasing the amount of money coming into the coffers by putting people back to work – they have spent untold billions writing cheques for programs they have no way of funding without going further into debt… and making the strategic policy of the USA subject to influences from Beijing, Tokyo and Riyadh.  Meanwhile, those people that have traditionally supported free enterprise (I am not talking about the Republicans here) and are working all the hours that are possible to create a income, find themselves being taxed into oblivion..

Not only now, has main street paid the money to support the generosity to banks and corporate America (without it seems, any conditions) – now the disposable income, increasing the likely hood of unemployment becomes real to millions of Americans – but what are the consequences on the children… do they get the vocational or scholastic education they need to drive the USA back to a semblance of their former self, or will the USA make the mistake (if they haven’t already) of becoming a third word country, full of uneducated people – with no prospects of employment. However at least it may stop the movement of jobs overseas to China and India… don;t really believe that myself. Because the real issue in USA corporate culture is that they only think in 3 month chunks, they have no long terms view, therefore they are not investing in the future, by investing now.

More to come soon… or why there will be in another financial crisis…

US bank failures top 100 for year

From the BBC, we note that 100 banks have failed this year so far, the highest number since 1992 in fact, Bank failures have cost the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) fund that insures deposits an estimated $25bn this year

The FDIC is a fund that insures deposits at failed banks with a current limit of cover of USD$250,000 per account.

It notes that a large number of failures were in regional banks, where they could not respond to the crisis of failures at the onset of the crisis. The banks were largely deposit takers rather than Merchant banks, although it is now history that the crisis did expand to Lehman Brothers which collapsed and also serious issues for Merrill Lynch that was save from collapse by being bought by the Bank of America.

Here is the link:

Civil War in the USA

Is it so unthinkable ? The thought that the seemingly most powerful country in the world would destroy itself … well quite frankly something profound and dramatic has to happen. Hopefully it won’t come to self destruction – if it does what will happen to the balance of power in the world, to the once almighty US Dollar.. will we again similarly revisit the economic doldrums of Russia after the end of communism ?  But we may not have the Russian Oil and Gas Industrial complex to pull us out to a new beginning.

The USA is racked by ignorance, fundamentalism and extremism in politics, religion and morals. It ain’t what it used to be… but again lets learn from history… can we this time please, pretty please. So what about the land of the free ? Some of these people (like us) who say they believe in God – but they kill for these beliefs, break every single moral law and commandment there is and still feel that they are right ? How can this religious fundamentalism exist is the land of the free ? How can secular religious Tax free organisations selling this right way to live – and then promptly do the opposite, these secular organisations use the influence of their media empires to expound and manipulate their message… how can these same secular enterprises who profess to be promoting the word of God, but are in fact corporations, looking to ever increase their income, now by manipulation of the very people that they profess to love – for what end, perhaps for political change for their own benefit…. to push the USA, towards a different kind of fundamentalism no better, in fact worse that Islam… because they are educated… they know what they are doing, and they should know better… and who is paying for all this…. Mr. &  Mrs America… gosh this so astounds me. I know I have spoken about the famous credo …. of many “The end justifies the means”  in my view the end never justifies the means if those means are corrupt, immoral or illegal…. all such means achieve is to devalue the goal… I think Obama is the USA’s (and perhaps the world’s) last chance, the bi-partisan ship that is so obviously needed to get the USA back on its feet – isn’t working, because it times of huge challenges to the American financial, social, military system which are being faced.

There is an visible enemy in the USA…. it is called the Republican party, and how does it survive, by manipulating, (like any other political party) the ignorant, the uneducated, and who else I might ask…. I wonder if you can accuse any political party of un-American behaviour, a behaviour almost to the point of treason… The Republicans …who instead of realising that they are basically the cause of this disaster, working actively to overthrow and derail every possible step forward…

I know that I am told that ethics, honour and integrity are three words that are not in the political dictionary, to be replaced by spin, spin, and outright manipulation of the facts. So how did we get here, how do we win elections, perhaps over time you bring together in front of the Television a group of middle income, middle class people of all political persuasions and ask them to remember an easier time – then you say the reason things aren’t easy at the moment is because of “him, her or them”….. now this was easy when the Republicans were in power because a bigger bunch of incompetents in power I have never seen, it was all about ego (who benefited) and the way it looked, and certainly not the way it was… so now because the voter, it doesn’t matter what country, works a little bit like a corporation, in that they cannot think in the long term, (in the case of corporations, past their next reporting period) – remember I said only a little bit…  so instead of realising that there are always going to be difficulties – and especially difficulties left over after 8 years of Bush… Gosh what a man…

What sort of legacy has he left behind…?  if anyone will remember him, it may be this way, perhaps someone might write a book, about the highlights of how you don’t run a country, no responsibility, no truth, no honour, no financial responsibility, no support to you citizens or to your friends (look how they dumped the former UK Prime Minister….Tony Blair and now we have Gordon Brown…goodness.)… (unless they put you in power of course) the USA went from the friend of the free world … to the worst kind of hypocrite – the worst kind of tyrant as displayed by Abu Ghraib – by renditions, by kidnappings….the majesty that was once displayed by the USA after World War II, is now but a note in history books… but now, Afghanistan, IRAQ – and now the talk starts of Iran… Oh please !!

Somebody help us. So back to the topic, I would like your comments please, why won’t the USA destroy itself ? From what is there now, through internal unrest, that could lead to Civil war,  please educate me… with the reasons such a thing couldn’t happen…. obviously I would never want such a thing to happen… but I believe unless the blatant political confrontation stops, its inevitable… where media, using the Constitution twist and manufacture lies – rationalise Republican errors – this happens not so much because the Public has a right to know… which is b/s – we are where we are because of the support for the political conservatism by the media with its warped view of the world… and if we cannot get the truth for the 6pm bulletin, lets make something up… very difficult to do here in Australia because of the oversight organisations to enforce the laws (but they try) – but its done, and done successfully elsewhere.  Why are there suicide bombers, the majority exist because of the the media, the effect of broadcasting this as news… it has such a detrimental effect of a countries psych i.. I am sure it has more power than a few nuclear weapons… now what if we didn’t broadcast such news… ? Starting in Media some 30+ years ago, I am pretty disappointed what political influence, the ratings push, almost no honour and integrity has done to the industry that I loved. So what in my view was the hey day of media, I am pretty sure that Edward R Murrow, to name just one must be turning in his grave at what the US News reporting ethics and honour and integrity now portray, and of course, not only the USA… Incidentally, I can also see Civil War happening in China and India, as soon as the marginalised forgotten people are educated and empowered enough, hopefully their change will come through political means… but I feel that the USA is pretty much a lost cause, unless the US political system has a epiphany – and they start working together.