Here’s A Novel Idea: Let European Banks Pay Off Greece’s Debts

February 8, 2012

Here’s A Novel Idea: Let European Banks Pay Off Greece’s Debts

James Anderson writes from Athens: This Greek capital, so that you know, is in a carnival mood. In other words, there’s mayhem in the streets. Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is spending quality time with the members of the ‘troika’ – the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund – in an attempt to agree the conditions for a 130 billion euro loan. Time is of the essence. They need to agree this week, otherwise it will be impossible for Greece to repay a 14.5 billion euro bond on 20 March. What happens if Athens doesn’t pay? The country goes bust. Now you may be wondering why they are haggling over these 130 billion euros. It’s quite simple. The unelected technocrat Papademos is trying to cut a deal with the troika that... 

Pulling A Fast One About Capitalism Causing All The Mess In The Economy

February 6, 2012

Pulling A Fast One About Capitalism Causing All The Mess In The Economy

R.F.Wilson writes from the City of London: First, a word to all the mugs in Britain and beyond who’ve been ecstatic about former boss of the Royal Bank of Scotland, Fred Goodwin, losing his knighthood and current RBS chief exec, Stephen Hester, turning down his £1 million share bonus: you’ve been had, you fools! Don’t you understand that these two were selected as fall guys to protect hundreds and thousands of others, who should be not just stripped of their honours and denied their bonuses, but sacked, investigated and hopefully prosecuted for what they’ve done. Don’t you realise that politicians are as guilty as the money men, for bankrupting the nation in order to bail out their friends? Yeah, think about it when you next congratulate yourself for taking a high moral stand and... 

If He Were A Fireman George Osborne Would Have Been A Lousy One

January 26, 2012

If He Were A Fireman George Osborne Would Have Been A Lousy One

Ted Obvious writes from the City of London: You know what I think? I think Chancellor George Osborne would have made a lousy fireman. Why? Because he would have used all sorts of stupid methods of putting down fires. Like banning hoses and water and telling his men to sprinkle the blaze with rose petals or assuming threatening positions and doing absolutely nothing, in the vain hope that the flames would die down themselves. And judging by the way he’s handling the economy he would have probably presided over the whole bloody city going up in flames, even though the fire would have started in one building. Yes, more bad news came yesterday about the long-suffering British economy that had been seriously abused for 13 whole years by Labour and is now getting a taste of the same medicine from... 

Capitalism Letting Us All Down? Now What Capitalism Would That Be?

January 24, 2012

Capitalism Letting Us All Down? Now What Capitalism Would That Be?

R.F.Wilson writes from London: There’s been a lot of talk about capitalism failing us all. All sorts of ‘experts’ with fancy comb-overs have been banging on about Karl f..king Marx getting it spot on about the imminent failure of capitalism to live up to people’s expectations. The suggestion is that the capitalist economic system has failed miserably and that it has to be replaced by something resembling market socialism that has supposedly transformed China into an economic superpower. The funniest comments come from people, who claim that they have always predicted the failure of capitalism to function properly and that the current mess proves them to be correct. Yeah, sure, you communist freaks. If you’ve had your way we would all be living in a giant labour camp, toiling... 

Is There Such A Thing As Moral Capitalism? Nope

January 22, 2012

Is There Such A Thing As Moral Capitalism? Nope

Martin McCauley writes from the City of London: Everyone is at it. Defining capitalism, I mean. David Cameron talks about moral capitalism, Ed Miliband about responsible capitalism and Nick Clegg is still thinking of a telling adjective. Capitalism has an image problem at present. Back in the 1920s and 1930s when capitalism was not doing very well, the solution to all of society’s ills was simple: adopt a Marxist approach. A centrally planned economy would ensure continual growth and eliminate poverty, unemployment and bring universal happiness. Just look at the growth figures of the Soviet economy! That great windbag, George Bernard Shaw, who had spent most of his life writing fiction, visited Stalin’s paradise and came away ecstatic. So why, given the present travails of capitalism, have... 

Bulls..t Economy. It’s Bigger Than You Think

January 16, 2012

Bulls..t Economy. It’s Bigger Than You Think

Anton Goryunov writes from Zurich: You’ve heard about the white economy and the black economy and even the grey economy. But there’s also another type of economy that has been there for as long as the other two, the bulls..t economy. It’s big and it’s got millions of people involved in it. It’s pure one hundred percent bull, it produces absolutely nothing, but the suckers just keep on coming and falling for it. I’m talking about the world of so-called middlemen, fixers, wheeler-dealers, people who are selling things they don’t have and looking for stuff they can’t afford to buy. They are everywhere, either offering or selling large consignments of oil and metals and grain and diamonds and even arms. They use the appropriate lingo, all those CIFs and FOBs and POPs and POFs and... 

Get This: The Banking Sector Is Powered Solely By Taxpayers’ Money

January 11, 2012

Get This: The Banking Sector Is Powered Solely By Taxpayers’ Money

R.F.Wilson writes from London: Are you one of those people who buy the idea peddled by governments and all sorts of experts that the worst of the economic troubles are over and we are slowly moving in the direction of growth and stability? Look, look, we hear politicians, money men and all sorts of analysts and commentators say, the markets are not doing all that bad, with the FTSE and DAX and others registering growth in the first days of 2012. Surely it’s a clear sign that things are improving and the investors are getting their confidence back. And millions of morons across the world, who sit in front of their computers, scanning the ocean that is the Internet, repeat this drivel on Social Media and in chat rooms and discussing it on forums, as if they have any idea how finances and the... 

Russian New Rich Burning Banknotes For Fun. They Might Be Closer To The Truth Than We Are

January 6, 2012

Russian New Rich Burning Banknotes For Fun. They Might Be Closer To The Truth Than We Are

Ivan Godunov writes from Moscow: The Russian oligarchs, who’ve made their money in all sorts of crazy semi-legal and illegal schemes, mostly by coming into possession of state owned assets for a fraction of their real value, have this weird habit of getting drunk and burning banknotes of large denominations, showing off in front of each other. The 500 euro notes are the preferred denomination in such cases. It’s only paper, they’d be saying, lighting up another couple of 500 euro notes. How right they are, these barbarians! Paper money has not really been holding value well in recent times. In fact, since the 1970s, when governments discreetly dropped the gold equivalent that propped up paper money, the value of these pieces of paper was constantly diminishing. Nowadays paper money’s... 

Does Anyone Have Any Idea What’s Happening In The World Economy? Of Course Not

January 2, 2012

Does Anyone Have Any Idea What’s Happening In The World Economy? Of Course Not

Anton Goryunov writes from Moscow: The world economy is a strange thing: no one ever seems to have any idea what the hell’s going on and most so-called experts and analysts talk total rubbish. Investors and financial markets behave like morons most of the time, panicking over every piece of bad news and generally behaving like retards. Experts never predict anything properly and it’s only after some calamity happens that they crawl out of everywhere and give us their opinions and even say things like ‘I told you so’ or ‘As I’ve been saying all along…’ The thing is that people rely on economic data that is mostly misleading. Take China, the land of supposed economic miracles, if you base your assumptions on the stats that are produced by the Chinese themselves: who on earth... 

Mammon Has Conquered The City Of London: To Our Detriment

December 15, 2011

Mammon Has Conquered The City Of London: To Our Detriment

Martin McCauley writes from the City of London: Do you remember the days when you were able to meet your bank manager face to face? He would have a friendly chat with you about a loan. Nowadays the computers have taken over. If it says your credit rating is not good enough, that is it. You can argue until you are blue in the face but the machine decides your fate. Machines have no morality so the financial system has lost its morality. We desperately need to inject morality back into the money markets. Western morality owes its origins to Christianity. The decline in religious faith has seen a decline in the way financiers do business. In the past, one spoke of God and Mammon. The latter was the Sumerian God of wealth. Christians derided the worship of money. Mammon epitomised avarice, greed... 

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