Published: July 22, 2001
The Real Agenda at G 8 Buy Some More Slaves
OK; I was going to write about how the world is too full of "stuff" for anyone to have any pricing power - and if that happens, then no one makes money, and the only thing left is inflated stock prices with lunar P/E ratios. Forget that. There's something more to be aware of, especially if you read the communiqué from the G-8 this weekend. Rounding up more slaves.
Like conspiracy theories?
Well, forget your "black helicopters with U.N. troops" taking over urban America. It's not going to happen that way. Instead, it will happen a lot neater - and perfectly legally. It'll be "legal" because it will involve bankers. God himself knows bankers wouldn't do anything that wasn't "legal", right?
That said, the real agenda at the G8 this weekend was to get all the power-brokers from the major league countries together and figure out how to put the screws to the little people in the small, emerging countries of the world, which unfortunately in the view of the "majors" control some pretty damn fine real estate. Let's talk about Nicaragua, or for that matter, Guyana, or Jamaica.
These are countries that have substantial foreign debt. That debt is not the debt of the little people who are getting stuck with the bills, it's the debt of corrupt governments, corrupt leaders, and frankly, U.S. companies to some degree that use and used local proxies to pay bribes and buy their way into sweet profits outside of Uncle's domain. Like the Philippines. Their debt was run up by a guy named Marcos. His wife bought a bazillion shoes...and he inconveniently died, after the Marcos people ditched a buncha money offshore. They are not living on the streets of Hawaii, right? Nope.
But debt, like a bad hangover, is running amuck , and the little people, unable to defend themselves militarily, and generally not aware of the underhanded games of the big world/corporate bankers, have been trying to honestly figure out how to restructure a debt that they didn't run up, yet they are being held accountable for.
It's sort of like this. Pretend that someone else used to live in the house you now live in. This person ran up huge debts, and in fact raped, plundered, and pillaged. They leave, and take a buncha money and drugs with them. They leave an empty house.
Now, you come in to the house. You think, OK, it's an abandoned house. So you'll make a go of things. But instead, one morning, someone comes and bangs on the door. It's a banker and they want 15% of everything you make, and if you take their deal, they will "restructure" the existing debt, stretching it out over many more years, at a slightly lower interest rate (Hey, thanks Al!).
Now as it turns out, the banker's name is the World Bank. And the 15% of everything is the taxes a country needs to collect in order to qualify for "assistance". The assistance looks good on paper because of lowered interest rates. These rates that are now relatively low, allow the debt of the country to be restructured, and for everyone who touches it, to make a fine profit.
Back to your house. The banker says "You owe us..." and before you can ask, "For what???" the bill is on the table and the expectation is that you will pay. But, as luck would have it (and yeah, this is a lot like a shabby car salesman or slimy insurance huckster) they will grant you lowered payments, but hidden from your view is their big refinancing fees.
This is precisely the game the World Bank and it's cronies are playing. Go in to countries that are on the ropes with foreign debt, offer them a sweetheart deal if the country will re-fi on WB terms, and then call it a "win for all!". Right...
Unfortunately, the restructuring brings about major shifts in how countries do business in their own country. This is the new & improved version of imperialism but with something more dangerous than bullets: interest rates. Those are justified on a "net present value" (NPV) value basis thanks to lower rates. If you haven't, check out the World Bank's site dealing with Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC's) at http://www.worldbank.org/hipc/ . Wonder why you're not getting the cheaper rates on your bank card? It's going to Third World countries...
If you go to the World Bank's web site, you can read all kinds of high worded stuff about how the bank is helping people, but when you get into the fine print of what they're really up to, it's troubling. Repackage debts these people did not run up (to save the sorry butts of some U.S. banks that are too big to fail) get them to sign before they know what's going on, and use this as a lever to get U.S. and multi-national corporations more slave-labor. And, along the way, the World Bank gets to make somewhere north of $1.2 billion in profits (See page 17 at http://www.worldbank.org/html/extpb/annrep/pdf/wb_7.pdf for its latest reported numbers.)
Sorry. It doesn't work for me. With the except of our old Porsche and the Daewoo we are making a conscious effort not to buy imported goods. I am damn near the point of not buying things that are made by workers in other countries that are being exploited by corporations that are not paying a working wage. Since when does high-minded humanitarianism make a spare $1.2 billion a year?
It's just like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). It was presented as a great thing for American workers. What did it really do? Well, as close as I can tell, it resulted in tons of previously American Made goods being made in South America.
Now, if they were just making the goods, and not paying off the debts of some 2-bit banana republic dictator who was hosing the people 20 years ago, I guess that would be one thing. But what about today's people? What's going on in Nicaragua that public education was free in 1988 and is now only accessible to about 70% of people? (Hint: Think of a large bank...).
It was immoral and unethical to sell these people our "military assistance" programs, and now that it's apparent that they have some unsoiled pieces of earth left, it's even more outrageous to steal them blind with our "money" (some paper with ink on it, mind you, not backed by gold) and subjugate them into the infinite future with a promise of debt...debt that we're papering over again thanks to Uncle Al and his lowered interest rates.
It really makes you proud to be an American, doesn't it.
I seem to recall that when I was born, I didn't come with title to a piece of land. Now that I think about it, neither did you. This earth is one big hunk of land, and we are each little animals running around on it. Although the animals have more sense.
Think about it: It you saw two bears fighting over "possession" of a dirt parking lot, it would be absurd, right? But people? Corporations? Hell no. We'll fight over any scrap of value because that's what 21st century life in America is all about.
Bring in the lawyers, bring in the banks, send in the guns and by God, let's force some "economic development". (And you wonder why it costs $12/hour to park is San Francisco!)
So forget the black helicopters, forget the U.N. flag being run up over our Capitol. It won't happen. More likely is the World Bank will charge us "use fees" on our own land, decree some level of taxation to pay for goods we never benefited from, and that's the New World Order for you: Ownership of more wage slaves without a shot being fired. Just sign here and we'll refinance your credit cards at a new, lower rate. Oh, those pesky re-fi fees? Meaningless in NPV terms.
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All contents (c) 1998-2001 by George A. Ure, MBA, except authors as linked or noted
"Rechargeable Money" and "Traceable Tender" (c) 2001, George A. Ure