Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The kiss of death - BMW to leave F1

After my bold prediction that BMW would win the Formula One World Championship this year, the Curse of Maturin Towers stepped up. BMW have just announced that they are to withdraw from Formula One, at the end of this season, after an extremely disappointing series of results and after watching their great rivals, Mercedes, win in Hungary at the weekend, while BMW struggled to even get 11th and 13th.

Oh well.

What's worst about this is the extraordinary amount of Belgian beer I have just lost on this announcement.

So, let's hope the Curse of Maturin Towers strikes again, and that my prediction of ten years of stagflation is completely wrong, and that this time next year we'll all be drinking champagne in business class again, turning down work due to overfull diaries, and contemplating which Caribbean island we'll be spending a month on, at Christmas.

Come on Curse, do your work. I'm particularly keen on Barbados.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

UK inflation down to 14.2%

It would seem the UK Gilt storm spotted by Liam Halligan is further reflected in this chart, with UK inflation coming down to 14.2%, from 16.7% last month. The Bank of England is playing funny games, and the only way I'll be able to make sense of this is to find their own figures on 'excess reserves' as in the Fed article below.

If anyone knows where the BoE keep their excess reserve figures on their website, I'd be obliged to find out. As navigating around that horrible site is tantamount to traversing the Circles of Hell.

Latest M4 figures, here.

Link to May 2009 M4 figures.

Why the dollar is going to collapse...

Two diagrams cover it all. The first is Ben Bernanke's expansion of the money supply in the last year. Take a look at the extreme right-hand edge of this chart:

(For more details on that chart, read this.)

But what's going on? If Ben Bernanke truly has doubled the supply of dollars in a single year, then where has all of that paper money gone? Why is the U.S. not reeling from hyperinflation?

Because the U.S. banks are storing all of those extra dollars in 'excess reserve' accounts at the Fed. Check out the second chart below. Once again, check out the right-hand extreme edge. Banks never normally store 'excess reserves' with a central bank. They normally lend out every penny they can, which the fractional reserve system then multiplies out to fill the economy with fiduciary media. When each of those dollars in 'excess reserves' finally makes it out into the economy, each one will multiply itself ten times, to fill the wallets of America with untold fiduciary media. The $800 billion dollars in 'excess reserves' will become $8 trillion dollars in paper folding money (or its electronic equivalent).

(For more on this chart, read this.)

What this tells us is that there is a veritable tsunami of dollars building up in the Fed, dammed up by Ben Bernanke. But the lake is filling, and Ben's only way of holding the dam is to pour more water into it with zero per cent interest rates.

The dam will collapse, from either weight of water, or the Fed raising interest rates a fraction. The dollars will then come pouring out. The fractional reserve system will multiply each dollar into a myriad of others. There will be one from the following, when this happens:

1). Massive stagflation (Hyper Depression) - if Ben shoves up interest rates massively to prevent people wanting borrowed dollars, to combat the deluge. American industry and housing will collapse under such interest rate pressure.

2). Massive inflation (Hyper Inflation) - if Ben keeps interest rates down to avoid immediate economic collapse. All the debtors, the majority of voters, will be overjoyed. Until they see what hyper inflation does to an economy, after a couple of years.

3). Complete full U.S. economic recovery. Ha! :-)

If you were to force me to put gold money on it, I'd bet on option two. I think Obama and the debtors of America will not have the stomach for option one. Option three is life in the land of the fairies and other Keynesian idiots.

As Bob Murphy says, it's hard to put figures on it, but the U.S. economy will be in the toilet for at least a decade. It's all in the charts.

With the quantitative easing scam here in the U.K., we face a similar if less horrific situation. Let us just thank the Lord that the pound sterling is no longer the world reserve currency, so we have not had so much rope with which to hang ourselves.

As Bill Bonner said recently:

Future economic historians will look at these staggering efforts with awe and wonder; they will wonder what the Hell we were thinking.

Credit Expansion, Crisis, and the Myth of the Saving Glut

For those seeking economic education in a world gone mad with Keynesianism, there are few in the living world in the same league as Uncle George Reisman. As a sort of 'Yin' to the 'Yang' of the ghost of Uncle Murray, Uncle George is off the main pathway of hard core Misesianism, beating out a track of his own. However, for sheer clarity of economic thinking only perhaps Frank Shostak is currently in the same league of living commentators. Long may Uncle George keep beating out his track, as he does so eloquently with his latest article.

It's a bit of a monster piece, however, so if you want some sort of appetizer beforehand, try out his much lighter piece on the downfall of General Motors.

For a light soufflé to follow the main course, you may also want to try out Frank Shostak's latest piece on the US economy:

=> Is the US Economy Close to Hitting Bottom?

Huge gilts row barely registers as the UK sleepwalks into stagnation

Liam Halligan continues his one man quest at the Labourgraph to keep highlighting the impending collapse of the UK government gilt market.

And it can't come a moment too soon.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Psychiatry is coercion masquerading as care

If you talk to God, you are praying;
If God talks to you, you have schizophrenia.
At one period in my life, I was one decision and two years away from becoming a fully-fledged psychiatrist (or at least being a Junior House Officer working directly under the supervision of a University's Psychiatry Department).

Fortunately, I took the right decision and got the hell out of there.

Since then, one of the highlights of following the Austrian School has been my discovery of the work of the incredible Thomas S. Szasz, the Professor of Psychiatry Emeritus at the State University of New York Health Science Center in Syracuse, New York. Check out this quote:
"Inasmuch as we have words to describe medicine as a healing art, but have none to describe it as a method of social control or political rule, we must first give it a name. I propose that we call it pharmacracy, from the Greek roots pharmakon, for ‘medicine' or ‘drug,' and kratein, for ‘to rule' or ‘to control.' ... As theocracy is rule by God or priests, and democracy is rule by the people or the majority, so pharmacracy is rule by medicine or physicians."
Szasz believes that there is no such thing as mental illness, and that the entire mental illness establishment is nothing more than an invention and plaything of the state to control societal dissenters and anyone else objecting too strenuously to the control of the state mafia over our lives. It's also a useful tool for relatives to take control of people, with the blessing of the monster state. In short, mental illness is unwanted behavior, not medical malady.

You'll notice that in "Soft-Totalitarian" states, such as 1970s Russia, it is usually the mental illness community who are happy to willingly act as tools to ensure state control, with refuseniks and other dissenters often ending up in psychiatric hospitals. We're seeing the same thing in Britain, of course, with anti-social behaviour orders and other moves towards compulsory mental control over individuals, starting naturally enough with yobs and violent bums, but no doubt ending with people who write heretical anti-government thoughts on blog web sites.

Anyhow, back to Szasz. It's a crazy spelling for a name, but he ain't no crazy guy. Check out his latest article on Lew Rockwell, and his website, the best part of which is his materials page.

Kill the Monster

Thomas Woods puts forward some thoughts on central banking.

(I'll post a link to the video as soon as it appears.)

You can bank on the Hand of Gord to create another disaster

The Jeffster highlights the continuing financial lunacy of Gordon Brown.

Tim Geithner: recession will be over within months

Oh God. It's worse than we thought.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The world has not warmed since 2001

Per Bylund has discovered a fantastic handbook for deniers of the global warming nonsense as pushed by the Green Nazi Human Death movement:

=> The Skeptic’s Handbook (PDF)

This is a splendid work by Joanne Nova.

Hat tips all round methinks.

Schiff for the Senate?

I'm unsure how wise it is for Peter Schiff to run for the US senate, but as Ron Paul gets older, perhaps it will be good for Der SchiffMeister to first help and then replace him?

It should certainly provide a good outlet platform for Austrianism, if Mr Schiff can stand to be among the crooks and spivs of the Imperium of Parasite City and can resist their traps and allures, as Doctor Paul has so successfully done.

In the meantime, check out the Video Blog archive of Mr Schiff, on YouTube. The latest one, below, is an excellent blog on the Minimum Wage, in the best tradition of Henry Hazlitt. Schiff also talks about his run for the US senate, at the end of the video:

UK Government has lost £10.9bn on stakes in RBS and Lloyds

Oh well, it's only other people's money.

And there's a lot more of our money to lose yet down this sleazy black hole, before we've finished with this idiocy.

I must say, when I watched a documentary a few years back about how the Japanese government kept bailing out its own zombie banks, it looked so plainly ridiculous and so obviously short-sighted and crooked, that I thought there was no way we would ever be so stupid and so corrupt over here.

Obviously, I was the stupid one.

Ho hum. Let us hope that the 'Repudiation' of British government debt is an idea whose time has come.

It's time to get out of the dollar

Roger Bootle has proclaimed the following:

=> History suggests it could be decades before the dollar is dislodged

I'm sure this will be the trigger that Jim Rogers has been looking for. It really is time to get out of the dollar.

It's poppycock to grow crops here but destroy them in Afghanistan

A great article by Bonson Jorris on the absurdity of the British government destroying opium production in Afghanistan (and failing miserably to do so, as usual), while at the same time subsidising opium production in South Oxfordshire.

The Great Blond One also provides us with some great tips on how to locate and procure your own supplies of morphine, just by wandering around the countryside near Swincombe and Nettlebed, which fortunately is only about five miles away from Maturin Towers.

I did feel it necessary, however, to add a comment to Bonson's rhetoric on the absurd war in Afghanistan being "heroic" and "far from futile". There's nothing heroic about shooting up the towns and villages of invaded lands, and everyone from here to Timbuktu knows the whole operation is entirely futile, which is why the British government will pull out its troops once the bond markets stop buying its paper:

Jack Maturin on July 13, 2009 at 09:45 AM

Boris, wouldn't it just be easier all round if we got the state out of the equation completely, and removed all of their stupid crime-creating bans on drugs and removed all of their self-given powers to intrude into people's lives based upon these drug bans?

As Ludwig von Mises says on page 54 of "Liberalism":

"As soon as we surrender the principle that the state should not interfere in any questions touching on the individual's mode of life, we end by regulating and restricting the latter down to the smallest details."

Your article quite correctly points out the hypocrisy and stupidity of the state, in destroying with one hand what it subsidises with the other, stealing from the taxpayer to pay for both operations.

However, the real problem is the interference in man's natural right to ingest whatever substance he sees fit, into his body.

The abrogation of this right is what lies at the heart of all of this death and misery currently being caused in Afghanistan by the British government. The rest is merely detail.
A splendid person writes:

Capitalist on July 13, 2009 at 11:35 AM

Well said Jack Maturin. 100% right. Nothing else needs to be said.

Quote of the day

"The foreign critics condemn the Nazi system as capitalist. . . . But this is one charge against the Nazis that is unfounded."

Ludwig von Mises, Omnipotent Government

Afghanistan: Gordon Brown accused of 'dereliction of duty'

Eight more die in Afghanistan, in 24 hours.

And still nobody in England, including the Prime Minister, knows why they were there.

Bring our troops home. Do it now.

In the meantime, the blood of every fallen man will fall upon the shoulders of that ultimate Klutz, General Gordon Donkey Jonah Brown.

When the inevitable retreat from Helmand begins, we will all know who to blame for this needless loss of British Isles soldiers, not to mention all of the Afghanis this stupid incomprehensible war has left dead, wounded, or mutilated.

Dead from Swine Flu yet?

Thought not.

A plague so virulent that Harry Potter star Rupert Grint was reported as having it last week, but said it was only a sniffle and he would still make it to the film premiere of the Half-Blood Prince.

No doubt the UN had plans to lock him up to prevent him from spreading his virii, in a large public gathering, but their handlers told them to look the other way.

Yes, the thoughts of Maturin Towers are with those families who have lost loved ones to flu, this year.

But as in an average year about 20,000 people die of flu in the UK, this was hardly 'All of Humanity Under Threat' as the UN claimed only a couple of months ago.

Once again, the entire world was suckered into another propaganda exercise for the imposition of world government, and once again the aspiring world government has been left looking like a bunch of idiots.

No doubt, however, this time next year they'll be at it again with 'Cat Flu', 'Dog Flu', 'Uncle Tom Cobley Flu', or even 'Flue Powder Flu'.

We really must be democratised government-educated fools for falling for this clap-trap, year after year. No doubt when a real plague hits, from out of left field, the UN will completely fail to spot it.

Why on Earth is Strauss still Captain?

In an ode to the putty he still had left under his armpit one morning, Grunthos the Flatulent, the poet master of the Azgoths of Kria, still found time to describe the uselessness of England cricket captain Andrew Strauss, the most pathetic specimen of Englishness since the bloke in the shield wall at Hastings who ran down the hill at the Bretons to let the Norman cavalry break in upon the rest of his suddenly stricken Saxon comrades.

Strauss is a loser. It's written all over his face.

His head bends at moments of pressure. Unlike Ponting, he fails to deliver runs when the chips are down. His selection of bowlers is appalling; his acceptance of the inevitability of defeat is always highly visible, and his inability to motivate is clearly apparent for all to see.

So let's get him back to scoring runs again. Let's get him back into the ranks of the flanking archers and allow him to concentrate on what he's really good at, which is thinking about and delivering runs against Australian bowlers. Let's drop the pilot and replace him with someone better in the bloody centre of the field before we fail to regain the Ashes by the Third Test.

So who should be captain? Well, from Maturin Towers it's completely obvious who it should be. Who is Sharpe? Who stands in the trenches when all others around him are flailing? Who is gritty? Who is determined? Who would Ponting be frightened of in a fight at closing time? Who would trade punches with Shane Warne? Who would be the last man standing in a fight with Alan Shearer?

There's only one man. Yes, OK; he's limited in the thinking stakes. He ain't no Mike Brearley. But from this end of town there's only one man capable of dragging England over the line to beat the hard-shouldered men of the prison colony, and that's the whip-handed prison guard himself, Her Majesty's doughty discipliner of rugged Aussie rock-breakers, a man who would force himself into the the Aussie team himself if he didn't love the Queen so much, and who was too smart to get convicted for stealing that sheep, and that's Paul Collingwood.

Make him Captain. Do it now.

And then we might actually beat these Australians. And send a few of the buggers back down under without stealing any more of our women or drinking any more of our beer.

In the meantime, can we praise Monty Panesar enough for roughing out the last few overs, today, and hanging on for the draw against the magnificent Australian attack?

Monty Panesar, we salute you.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Climate change: The sun and the oceans do not lie

A devastating article by the heroic Christopher Booker. Here's a sample quote:

We still have a long way to go before that Copenhagen treaty is agreed in December, and with China, India and 128 other countries still demanding trillions of dollars as the price of their co-operation, the prospect of anything but a hopelessly fudged agreement looks slim. But even a compromise could inflict devastating damage on our own economic future – all for a theory now shot so full of holes that its supporters are having to suppress free speech to defend it.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

The Austrian Cure for Economic Illness

So, Gordon, I know you're reading this and I know you want to get Britain out of this horrible depression you have created by expanding a twelve-year fiduciary bubble. So how do we do it. Well, it's simple really. You just follow a straightforward six-point plan, as adapted via one for America by Donald Miller:

1) End the Bank of England. If the economy is going to be able to recover any time soon, the market must be free to set interest rates, without a central bank that can inflate the money supply. The government must play no role in monetary affairs. Banks will exist as free-enterprise institutions with no privileges from the state; and if they engage in fractional reserve banking, they do so at their own risk.

2) Restore sound money to the economy. Have no legal tender laws that restrict what currency the market chooses to use. Privatize the country’s monetary system and allow the free market to determine the forms of money it prefers: gold and silver; new currencies based on gold and silver, or other commodities; PayPal dollars; a Google currency based on any number of goods; foreign currencies, etc. There has to be a separation of money and banking from the state.

3) Lower taxes and cut government spending. Substantially. A 50% cut would be a good start. Start with bureaucrats in regulatory departments, and anyone else who justifies their salary by harassing wealth creators with spurious legislation. And no cheating here, Gordon. We want warm bodies out of the door.

4) No bailouts. Stand aside and allow malinvestments, bankrupt firms, and insolvent banks to fail. The economy needs to liquidate all the mistakes made during the boom in order to recover from the bust.

5) Allow prices and wages to fall to levels set by the market.

6) Regulate the government, not private property and markets. Stop government departments interfering in free markets. The best way to do this will be to shut down as many government departments as possible and moving as much as possible into the private sector. Privatise everything that moves. Privatise everything that doesn't move. Privatise anything else that's left.

That's it.

Alternatively, if you want the depression to worsen degree by painful degree, just keep going with what you're doing now.

Six points too complicated for you? I have an even simpler plan. Just sack everyone in the government and then resign.

As the Meerkat says, "Simples".

Analogy attack

Many inflationist economic commentators like coming up with various analogies to describe how inflationism is the only solution. There was a great one this morning in the Labourgraph:

Stimulating a sluggish economy with easy money is like trying to move a large weight with a piece of elastic. For a long time, nothing happens, so the authorities pull harder and harder. Then, all of a sudden, the weight shifts, and with startling speed hurtles towards them and smacks them in the face.
Apparently, it's all a question of knowing when to release some elastic and getting the force just right.

This may be OK for teenage boys in the bedrooms of teenage girls, but to describe something as complex as a market in such a way is perhaps symptomatic of the simplistic way in which inflationists see the world.

What we need now is the harsh medicine of Uncle Gary's plan to put the world straight. Not that we'll get it of course, unless someone in the Middle East or Asia has the nerve to try it, in the face of US military aggression to stop them.

If the Bank of England apparently has the nerve to install high interest rates next year, why doesn't it have the nerve to put them in now? We all know what's actually going to happen. Next year, when price inflation really starts to pick up, the obvious need to increase interest rates to damp down this process (already way too late), will be pathetically tried with a half per cent interest rate hike, from 0.5% to 1.0%. The screams of agony which this will create from our debtor nation will be so loud, that no further such attempts will be tried for some time.

Once price inflation therefore becomes massive price inflation, they will try again, doubling rates from 1.0% to 2.0%. Once again, the screams of pain will be too much to go further.

Britain is filled with a majority of debtors. Most people owe vast sums on the mortgages on their houses. There is no way these people will put up with interest rates of 15% or 20%, to kill inflation. They will do the obvious thing instead. They will vote in, using their majority power, a government that will remove their debts by allowing massive inflation to take place.

Obviously, the economy will be destroyed in the fashion of a 1980s Brazil or a 1990s Argentina, but if the majority of voters are debtors, expect politicians to promote debtor-friendly policies.

Now you weren't thinking those 'green shoots' were actually real green shoots, were you? You really ought to listen to your Uncle Jack.

(But fix your mortgage, if you can, just in case.)

How To Create a New World Reserve Currency

Gary North explains how.

I wonder if any Chinese bankers are reading?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Austrianism in a nutshell

I foresee great things for Shawn Ritenour.

Who on Earth is Shawn Ritenour I hear you ask?

He's the writer of one of the clearest articles on Austrian economics I've ever read. In this piece he explains the three sources of government income, and how they all screw up the lives of everyone else outside of the government mafia protection-racket tax-eating machine.

The future of Austrian economics gets brighter every day. One of the reasons is that we no longer immediately recognise the names of the writers of brilliant articles on the demonically dull subject of economics.

The snowball has grown. Let us hope, for all of our sakes, that the avalanche that this generates also becomes unstoppable.

In the meantime, read the article by Shawn. It is very much concerned with a US-centric view of the world. But if you exchange 'Obama' for 'Brown', and 'King' for 'Bernanke', the description of the British experience is still pretty much on the button.

Britain's security linked to military operations in Afghanistan, claims Gordon Brown

Death. Death. Death.

That's all we're going to get from Afghanistan. Both of British uniformed teen aged children, and other assorted young British men and women, who joined up in the belief they would defending their country rather than looking after US global power interests. And of local Afghanis, who are being slaughtered from the air by hellfire missiles fired at them by computer game players in Las Vegas.

Brown, obviously, is a regular reader of AngloAustria. After I asked for the 'official' reason why we are there, yesterday, he answered today with a pathetic call to patriotism, the last refuge of the incompetent, saying that Britain is being defended from a front line six thousand miles away on various dusty hillsides in Afghanistan, where the Taliban are starting to increase their kill-rate on the foreign British invader, just like they did with the foreign Russian invader.

Did we learn nothing from the Kremlin's own failed attempt to take out this country? The Russians put a lot more men and equipment into Afghanistan, and were far more ruthless in their prosecution of their Taliban enemy. And yet they were humiliated, leaving with a tail between their paper tiger legs in a retreat which ultimately led to the complete collapse of communist power in Russia itself, the ultimate victory of the Mujaheddin.

Here's part of what slaughterer-in-chief, General Donkey Brown, said in defence of his regime's own attempt to 'Do a Russia':

"Having talked to (US) President (Barack) Obama and the rest of the world leaders, there is a recognition that this is a task the world has got to accept together and this is a task we have got to fulfil."
Well, it's nice to know that Brown is a regular reader of AngloAustria, finally giving us an answer as to why we are in Afghanistan, but let me rewrite that quote to what he was actually thinking:

I spoke to my master the Emperor last night, and he said, "Satrap Brown. If you want to be paid off by the CIA, like your predecessor, then you will keep your auxiliaries in place in the outer marches of my Empire. Although we will not pay you as much as our dear friend Blair, when we replace you next year with 'Me Too' Dave, we will keep open a nice fat job for you in the World Bank or the IMF to move right into. You may also get a rake off of the profits from the oil when we pipe it through Afghanistan down to the coast, from Central Asia. These are the rewards for service to me. You will not want me to describe the alternative. You are dismissed."

Headed to National Socialism

Sir Llewellyn Rockwell writes a must-read article on how Obama really is turning the US into a national socialist state.

Bank of England indicates an end to quantitative easing

I wish they'd make their minds up.

Though I think this is just posturing by the Bank of England. If they do stop quantitative counterfeiting at £125 billion, then the UK government will no longer be able to sell its bonds without shelling out huge amounts in interest.

Therefore, as the deadline approaches, expect the BoE to 'do the right thing' by the bond traders and money markets, and keep the printing presses rolling. Not that this will be due to pressure by the Treasury of anything.

What a bunch of jokesters.

Oh, what it would be to be a fly on the wall in the Treasury's debt management office when UK government bond yields go over 5%, then hit 10%, then hit 15%.

Oh well, it's only other people's money.

Though as Uncle Murray said, the British government may be rolling up this debt, but though I am physically 'obliged' by the ultimate threat of murder to pay this off for them, repudiation may be the way to go instead.

In order to go this route, however, we first have to rid ourselves of the fallacious mindset that conflates public and private, and that treats government debt as if it were a productive contract between two legitimate property owners.

Uncle Murray
Imagine that it gets so bad for the British government that the whole shooting match collapses, Scotland goes independent, Wales goes independent, and England forms an entirely new government. Imagine if all three governments simply repudiated 'British' government debt as nothing to do with them.

Wouldn't that be interesting.

Why should the poor, battered citizens of the former British countries be bound by the debts contracted by their former Communist masters in Brown's government?

Indeed, why should I be bound now, by the debts Brown is running up? I don't want this money to be borrowed and I have never voted for the man. Indeed, nobody has voted for him to do this. Even Labour backbench MPs have never voted for him.

So I do not regard the debts of the British government as being any way binding on me to pay them off. Yes, the men with the guns will come round, probably, and try to force me to pay them, if I haven't managed to escape this dreadful island first, but let UK government bond buyers beware, and all the other immoral purchasers of future stolen pelf. Just because you've bought them, with a triple AAA rating, don't assume that the Lord God above has determined that you will get your capital back.

All you're actually going to get back is paper scrip or even a full-on default or perhaps the magic of Uncle Murray's repudiation. Perhaps it's time those yields really did start shooting up.

PS> Yes, I know that somewhere along the line, due to some stupid government regulation, I myself have probably been forced into buying UK government bonds, but it's not for the want of trying that I've tried to get myself out of all such immoral positions. Buying government debt is as immoral as living off tax. You are basing your investment upon the threat that the government holds over the population it controls and upon its ability to counterfeit without censure. If nobody bought any government debt, we would also shrink governments down to a controllable size, as they would always be forced to spend in line with their taxation income, would be unable to afford wars, and would be unable to expand government without such increases in expenditure becoming immediately noticeable by taxpayers. Any inflation they tried in such circumstances, without fencing it through the government bond machine, would also be immediately noticeable by taxpayers. So if you want to live a moral life, sell your government bonds and buy gold instead. Indeed, if you want to live an immoral life, you should sell your government bonds and buy gold instead (or gold mining stocks, if you want a dividend stream).

Mustn't grumble

I meet many successful entrepreneurs in my ramblings around London, and elsewhere, far wealthier and more talented than your humble correspondent. However, virtually all of them (with one or two Austrian exceptions) are saying the same thing.

"It'll turn round, Jack, it always does. Just hang on a bit longer, mate, and it'll be right, just like it always is. Stop worrying. C'mon, things are getting better. People are still buying Frappucinos and starting to go on holiday. I reckon house prices are levelling out, too. I fancy buying another Merc. Most people are still in jobs, and will be next year. Might have to stay in this house a couple more years, tighten the belt a bit, but stop worrying. It always comes back..."


You've probably heard the same thing. To be honest, I've stopped playing my usual record to these people of saying that this time it's different, because all the other 'recoveries' since the 1970s, were created by re-inflating the previously collapsed bubble. But after ten years of 10% inflation, in the Brown Bubble, and forty years of inflating upon the non-gold dollar, there is no re-inflating this monster.

I used to say "We're heading for the Japanese experience, except we're without a work ethic or savings, though our government is just as stupid."

This is the line that most people walk away from me on. In most business people's experience, in the UK, we've had about five or six horrible recessions since 1970, and all of them have lasted about one year, to 18 months, with the possible exception of Her Blessed Margaretness's recession in the early 1980s. But this is thought acceptable, because it put the unions back in their box, and even this one was over by about 1984. The 1970s were pretty terrible, too, with recessions every other year, but once again this was sorted out by Her Blessedness.

But if you put up a picture of a ten year or even a twenty year recession/stagnation/depression, as they're still experiencing in Japan, with failed stimulus after failed stimulus, the image is severely unwelcome and people just walk away muttering. No one wants to know. And no one wants to hear. Because, "it'll come back, it always does."

So, tired of being labelled a mono-maniac, outside of this website I am going to say nothing more to anyone. I'll work out my own way through this mess and stop offering 'helpful' advice that nobody wants to hear. I shall smile, and although I won't actually say "you're right, it'll probably all be over by Christmas", I'll look like I'm thinking it, just to make the lives of those around me more bearable.

You see, I am an Englishman. I mustn't grumble.

MPC to hold interest rates, but increase QE

Dear Lord.

Have you divested into gold, silver, and gold and silver mining stocks yet?

Don't you think it's time you should?

With quantitative counterfeiting about to rise from £125 billion to £200 billion pounds, with all of that being laundered through UK government bond auction sales to 'pay' the wages of millions of bureaucrats, expect massive price inflation in Britain in the next few years.

Oh yes, unless the Bank of England reverse their quantitative policy next year and start destroying money instead by selling government bonds, and raising interest rates to 15%, 20%, or even higher.

Yes, the economy will be able to take that kind of shock, next year. Just like a fat bloke can always go on a diet, next year.

As if.

Just who do they think they're kidding? If we can't take high interest rates now, why does anyone think we'll be able to take high interest rates later, when the fundamentals will be even worse?

Buy gold. Physical gold. That you hold yourself. Do it now. Fix your mortgage while you're at it. Because when this price inflation tsunami takes hold, it is going to take enormous interest rates to rein it back in again.

Though let's face it, the real course of action will be to ditch the pound and surrender to the Euro Zone, with a massively devalued entrance rate for all of the soon-to-be-worthless pounds in your pocket.

Dear God, sometimes I hate being an Austrian. The long-term future of a free world looks just great. But the horrors we are about to go through to get there are just horrible.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Krikkit – Sport of the Gods

Freddie Flintoff? Cricket? Civilisation?


Make mine a cold one? Shakespeare? Jumpers for stumps?


Circular Quay? Mrs Macquarie's Chair? Hunter Valley Chardonnay?


Ponting out LBW? Ashes on the line? Ian Chappell and Geoffrey Boycott?


Five weeks of absolute joy? Pain? Suffering? Misery? Exhilaration? Better than sex? Worse than sex? Better than love? Worse than hatred? The joy of battle?

No worries.

Botham at Headingley? Willis coming down the wicket? Shane Warne at the crease? Agincourt? Crecy? Poitiers? Blenheim? Trafalgar? Waterloo?

A strange dual nation separated by 12,000 miles of mutual hatred, love, and sea?

Very strange indeed.

Ich bin ein Australien.

Ich bin ein Englander.


Make mine a Gin and Tonic. Make it a large one. Keep them coming. Make them cold.

Get my mate the Aussie one, too.


Green Nazi Death Mantras

I've selected a few quote highlights, below, from the Green Nazi movement. To grimly reap a lot more, try:

=> Frightening Quotes from Environmentalists - Attack Of The Socialist-Luddites

BTW, just as George Reisman says in his splendid article on the subject, none of the quotes below have ever been challenged or refuted by anyone else in the Green Nazi movement.

The right to have children should be a marketable commodity, bought and traded by individuals but absolutely limited by the state.

Kenneth Boulding
I suspect that eradicating smallpox was wrong. It played an important part in balancing ecosystems.

John Davis
Human beings, as a species, have no more value than slugs.

John Davis (again)
We advocate biodiversity for biodiversity’s sake. It may take our extinction to set things straight.

David Forman
Phasing out the human race will solve every problem on earth, social and environmental.

Dave Forman (again)
Human happiness, and certainly human fecundity, is not as important as a wild and healthy planets…Some of us can only hope for the right virus to come along.

David Graber
If I were reincarnated, I would wish to be returned to Earth as a killer virus to lower human population levels.

Prince Phillip (no, really!)
To feed a starving child is to exacerbate the world population problem.

Lamont Cole
The extinction of the human species may not only be inevitable but a good thing....This is not to say that the rise of human civilization is insignificant, but there is no way of showing that it will be much help to the world in the long run.

Economist Magazine
Everything we have developed over the last 100 years should be destroyed.

Pentti Linkola


Quote of the day

...And this is why I call environmentalism evil. It’s evil to the core. In the environmental movement, contemplating the mass death of people in general is no more shocking than it was in the Communist and Nazi movements to contemplate the mass death of capitalists or Jews in particular. All three are philosophies of death. The only difference is that environmentalism aims at death on a much larger scale.
George Reisman

The blood fest goes on

Can anyone tell me the 'official' reason why the British Army is having its soldiers regularly blown up in Afghanistan?

We know the real reason, of course, in that the US wants to bring oil pipelines south out of Central Asia, without having to put them through Russia; but what is the 'official' reason?

Are we there to 'defeat' the Taliban? If we are, then its increasing resurgence since British soldiers were sent in would put paid to that reason.

Are we there to 'defeat' the poppy farmers, and stop the flow of heroin to the west? Well, if we are, then the huge growth in poppy production to pay for the weapons to fight and defeat the western infidel would put paid to that miserable excuse.

Are we there to 'introduce' democracy (at the end of a gun barrel)? Well, it might be nice for all of the apparatchiks and corrupt politicians in Kabul to make millions for their Swiss bank accounts, just as they did when the Russians occupied Kabul, but does anyone really seriously believe that 'democracy' is going to make any intrusion into the heartland of Afghanistan any time soon?

Or are we just there to give British Army generals something to do in their planning sand pits in Camberley, with thin-skinned model cars playing the parts of thin-skinned Land Rovers, in complex pincer movements?

No, the real reason we are there is the first one; to provide indentured satrap auxiliaries to our American imperial masters, while they continue in their quest to isolate Mother Russia and take over the world.

In the meantime, we are losing virtually a man a day now, to the 'destroyed' Taliban, and as occupiers alongside the Americans, we will be raising a level of antipathy within the Afghan population against all things British, which could result in many more suicide bombers in the future, stalking the streets of London with hate in their eyes, especially anyone who has seen their family blown up by American bombs called in by British scouts.

But it doesn't matter how many hellfire missiles are called in, it is now inevitable that we will withdraw, so why don't we just go now and save the lives of our 18-year-old boys in uniform, who are otherwise going to die a long way from home?

If there was an Afghan army here in Britain, occupying us for our own good, I would guess that virtually every red-blooded Englishman I know would be up in the hills, armed to the teeth, fighting back against the invasion.

So why are we so surprised when the Afghans do the same in their own country against our occupying army?

We should get out of their country. We should get out now, to stop this blood fest.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

David Cameron's first priority must be job cuts in the public sector

Sir Simon Huffchester, the resident loose cannon at the Labourgraph, has some excellent ideas for David 'Me Too' Cameron.

Jack Maturin on July 08, 2009 at 10:42 AM

Alas, Sir Simon places too much faith in the same Double-First mandarins at the Treasury who got us into this mess in the first place. Though he does share my own contempt for Cameron's ability to take some hard decisions, such as annoying the 40% of the electorate who depend for their livelihoods upon robbing the rest of us.

But, at least Sir Huffchester recognises the need for some serious figures when dealing with the Turkeys in the British state mafia that bleed the rest of us so very dry, for so very little in return.

Though he only mentions a figure of a 20% cut in government spending. Why so feeble, Sir Huff? If, as you say, even MoD officials are saying that they could cut 25,000 civil servants from the 100,000 strong 'work' force at the Ministry of Defence, without really noticing, why not 25%, 40%, 50%? Even that would only be a start.

We should privatise everything that moves. We should then privatise everything that doesn't move. Everything that's left, we should then privatise. We should keep going until there is nothing left of this monster that so ruins our lives, destroys our freedoms, and robs us until we are blind, often killing our children along the way, as it is currently doing in Afghanistan, or making our security worse, by creating martyrs in places like Afghanistan whose children then dedicate their lives, upon the graves of their slaughtered mothers and fathers, to ruining the lives of anyone bearing a British passport.

The state is a monster. It should be slayed forthwith.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

It's Not Just That Global Warming Is Fake. What Matters Is Why This Fakery Is Being Promoted.

Uncle Gary wants the whole world to reproduce a piece he has just published on his website. Being a disciple of the Northster, I feel obliged to obey my master:

July 3, 2009

Global warming is based 100% on junk science. The most vocal promoters are not interested in the details of physical science. They are interested in two things: political control over the general public and the establishment of international socialism.

Junk Science vs. Real Science

For a detailed, footnoted, 12-page article, written by three scientists, two with Ph.D's from CalTech, click here.

This paper was sent to tens of thousands of natural scientists in the United States.

Over 31,000 scientists have put their reputations on the line and signed a politically incorrect petition opposing the 1997 Kyoto agreement or protocol. Here is a photocopy of a signed petition.

Here is a letter from a former president of the National Academy of Sciences. He asks recipients of the petition to sign it.

Back in the 1970's, the bugaboo was the coming ice age, as this Time Magazine article promoted. Not to be outdone, Newsweek got on board. The article warned: "Climatologists are pessimistic that political leaders will take any positive action to compensate for the climatic change, or even to allay its effects." Want more examples? Click here.

It, too, was based on junk science. It, too, had the same solution: government control over the economy. The goal never changes: government management over the economy. The justification has changed. If the voters won't accept control over their lives on the basis of one brand of junk science, maybe they will accept another. As they used to say in the Nixon Administration: "Let's run this up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes."

Socialism's Last Stand

The global warming movement is not about global warming. It is about the creation of an international political control arrangement by which bureaucrats who favor socialism can gain control over the international economy.

This strategy was stated boldly by economist Robert Heilbroner in 1990. Heilbroner, the multi-millionaire socialist and author of the best-selling history of economic thought, The Worldly Philosophers, wrote the manifesto for these bureaucrats. He did this in an article, "Reflections: After Communism," published by The New Yorker (Sept. 10, 1990).

In this article, he made an astounding admission. He said that Ludwig von Mises had been right in 1920 in his article, "Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth." Mises argued that without private ownership, central planners could not know what any resource is worth to consumers. With no capital market, the planners would be flying blind.

Heilbroner said that for 70 years, academic economists had either ignored this article or dismissed it without answering it. Then Heilbroner wrote these words: "Mises was right."

Heilbroner was one of these people. There is no reference to Mises in The Worldly Philosophers.

This admission was the preliminary section of Heilbroner's manifesto. He was cutting off all hope by socialists that there is a theoretically plausible response to Mises. The free market economy will always outproduce a socialist economy. Get used to it, he said.

Then, in the second section, he called on his socialist peers to get behind the ecology movement. Here, he said, is the best political means for promoting central planning, despite its inefficiency. In the name of ecology, he said, socialists can get a hearing from politicians and voters.

The article is not online. An abstract is. Here is the concluding thought of the abstract.
The direction in which things are headed is some version of capitalism, whatever its title. In Eastern Europe, the new system is referred to as Not Socialism. Socialism may not continue as an important force now that Communism is finished. But another way of looking at socialism is as the society that must emerge if humanity is to cope with the ecological burden that economic growth is placing on the environment. From this perspective, the long vista after Communism leads through capitalism into a still unexplored world that roust [must?] be safely attained and settled before it can be named.
Heilbroner did not care that a worldwide government-run economic planning system would not be called called socialism. He just wanted to see the system set up.

Heilbroner's peers got the message. That was what Kyoto was all about.


If you like poverty, inefficiency, and bureaucratic controls over the economy, and therefore control over your choices, the "climate change" movement is ideal.

If you want to subsidize China and India, neither of which will enforce the rules laid down by unelected international bureaucrats, this movement is for you.

If you want to pay more for less energy, there is no better way than to pass the cap and tax bill which the House has passed. It will be sent to the U.S. Senate next week.

The rest of us should oppose it.

I hereby authorize anyone to reprint this article or post it on any website, just so long as the text is not changed.

- Gary North

As Maturin Towers have been saying for some time, the sudden switch of the Lefties to environmentalism was nothing to do with some imminent catastrophe suddenly arising from the galactic firmament, but much more to do with the collapse of communism. With nothing left to hang their tattered ideological hats on, instead of finally admitting that socialism is bunk, the stupidest idea of all time, and not the greatest idea of all time, they couldn't face that reality. So they turned en masse towards the Green Nazism of environmentalism instead. Cognitive dissonance gone crazy? You betcha.

I'll be laughing particularly hard when they start claiming that the global cooling the world is currently going through is down to global warming. Errr... Crikey, they've done that already, haven't they, with this ridiculous switch to 'Climate Change'! :-)

Meanwhile, if you're feeling like a little more anti-Green Nazi mind food, it's always worth trying out Uncle George Reisman instead:

=> Fallout from Declaring CO2 a Pollutant (A Potential News Dispatch from a World Going Mad)
=> “Green” Jobs
=> The Nature of Environmentalism

Superb, one and all!

UK Inflation down to 16.6%

OK, I'm a bit late this month, but better late than never.

No wonder Mervyn King was smiling at Wimbledon this week. Because he's managed to get down UK inflation to a measly 16.6%, when Maturin Towers did think three months ago it would be over 20% by now. These 'Black Austrians' in charge of the central banks, really do know how to cook their books to fool most of the people most of the time, so fiduciary credit must be given where fiduciary credit is due.

(Though of course, Jamie Whyte is still less than impressed.)

Looking at these figures, the 'commercial' banks must be hoovering up an awful lot of quantitatively counterfeited cash from all of the recent bond auctions. When this cash tsunami finally breaks out, as it eventually must, then watch that 16.6% zoom over the 20% line and perhaps into the territory of 30%. We spent most of the last decade with M4 inflation at around 10%, building up the Brown Bubble, so heaven knows how much damage is being done even at this re-bubble inflation level of 16.6%.

Link to BoE May Inflation figures

Link to previous April 2009 M4 figures

Monday, July 06, 2009

Uncle Gary Roundup

Since a recent trip to Dubai, which took about 110% of my brainpower for a couple of weeks, I've been a bit slack in keeping up with Uncle Gary. So today I thought I'd redress the balance:

The Federal Reserve System's Party Line
Uncle Gary nails the Federal Reserves basic plan as being basically (1)Inflation and (2)Blarney. If these two fail, they try a third track, (3)Lies.

Pushing on a String
Mass deflation? You've got to be joking. Uncle Gary tells how the Federal Reserve is buying up major swathes of the US economy with newly printed paper and how this is going to lead to massive inflation.

The Next Bubble Is Here. Have You Bought In?
The Northster castigates those who believe the recovery has started.

Mish Shedlock on Gold, Inflation, and Deflation
Uncle Gary takes the brilliant Mish Shedlock to task for his beliefs in deflation, and then asks him ten questions.

The Myth of the Kondratieff Wave
The Northster tells us to avoid believing proponents of the mysterious K-wave. (It would be interesting to hear what Uncle Gary thinks of the Elliot Wave, something I'm very much tempted to believe in.)

Shredding Your Safety Nets
It's my pet theory that Old Ambrose responds on his own Labourgraph posts under the pseudonym of Charles Lee. Of course Charles Lee may actually be Charles Lee, but whoever Charles is, he seems to believe in welfare safety nets, as evidenced by his response to my comment in this post. If he were to read this piece by Uncle Gary he would realise that if things get much worse, then there will no longer be a safety net for anyone, never mind the deserving poor, because the entire 'safety net' has recently been lashed on the banks, instead of letting them go bust as they should have been, and that soon there will be no welfare left for anyone, including the banks. When governments have no tax income, can no longer borrow money off anyone, and eventually cannot even pay for the paper to roll through their printing presses, then how can anyone think that any welfare will be left? Whatever's left will be used to fund the police and army to keep the government in power, as best they are able; for everyone else it will be every man for himself. Fortunately, I think the UK will actually fare slightly better than the US, but only because we do not have the world reserve currency, and because this means our government will run out of money before the US one does. But it's not too much consolation. We're still going to be screwed, and the longer we leave it until we severely cut back on government consumption spending, the closer we will get to the forthcoming American experience.

Green Shoots and Greenbacks
Green shoots? Don't make me laugh. To have spent so much and to have seen so little in return is absolutely laughable. Governments have been doing the equivalent of spending a million dollars and then jumping up and down, all cock-a-hoop, because they have managed to purchase a basic Ford 'Ka', without air conditioning and without a decent radio. Yes, with all that outlay you're bound to get something. But the beginning of the recovery? What a laugh. Well, it would be a laugh if wasn't such a disaster.

What I Should Have Said to Meryl Streep
Going off-topic, Uncle Gary comes up with some rules for how to approach celebrities, should you meet them. I won't say how I first met Professor Robert Higgs, at a beach bar in Turkey, but it involved a belly dancer and a lack of Turkish lira in my pocket. That's perhaps a better way to meet a celebrity, than Uncle Gary's way, but if you're short of a belly dancer, then perhaps the Northster's way is best. And OK, so yes, meeting a prominent Austrian professor may not be in the same league as meeting Bruce Willis, but in my crazy world, Professor Robert Higgs is much more important than any Hollywood Film Star.

Moonwalking with Faber

The Good Doctor says borrow dollars and buy Asian stocks.

Car scrappage scheme halts sharp decline in new UK car sales

What happens in bubbles?

Essentially, people think they are wealthier than they really are, and that returns from long-term investments will be better than they're actually going to be.

This is because in the real world, no more scarce resources are brought into existence by the creation of fiduciary media from out of thin air. Yet, for a while, people think this 'new' money is worth the same as the 'old' money, and that it will get the same quantity of scarce resources.

The trick to democratic government is fooling enough of the people for enough of the time, that this 'government magic' of creating money out of thin air actually works.

But the longer this trick is worked, the worse is the explosion of the bubble at the end of the line. Which is where we are now.

In the last ten years people have bought better, faster, and more luxurious cars than they actually needed or could really afford, often based upon rising house prices against which they borrowed or because of increased wages, both caused by government money printing.

Car makers have found cheaper money than they should have found, so very long-term investments (such as building car manufacturing plants) have made sense, with long-term returns appearing to provide net positive present values.

So far, so good. Then reality bit. The credit crunch made banks price money properly both to car manufacturers and retail car consumers. This made investment in car plants suddenly a bad idea. People also realised they really didn't need that brand new luxury car and could make do with a second hand standard car instead.

The market thus returned us to a state of sanity. What should have happened is that a few car manufacturers, particularly of expensive luxury brands, should have folded, thus releasing their resources to better uses.

But no, governments can't have that. There are too many votes at stake. So they embarked upon quantitative counterfeiting to get interest rates lower again, both for manufacturers and consumers. Yes, this stacks up yet more problems for the future, but that's the future's problem.

Unfortunately, despite these massive injections of new 'stimulus' money, there have only been pathetically paltry returns, the so-called green-shoots. (Imagine loading a garden with 25 tons of horse manure, planting the finest grass seeds, drenching the garden in high quality sunlight and filtered water, and only finding a few small patches of grass coming up, most of them wilting and dying almost instantaneously. Here are your green shoots.)

So, not to be put off, governments have been taking money from successful small British companies via corporation tax, thereby weakening those companies who possibly had a chance of making it into the future, and using this money to prop up failing car companies, like Ford (a foreign-owned company), to help sell more cars.

Result. Instead of wasted resources being moved to more productive uses, even more new cars are being produced and sold than would have been the case in the free market, less investment is going into the taxed companies who are being raked for this subsidy money, and Mr and Mrs Joe Voter are able to replace their 10-year old Ford 'Ka', which had another five years of useful economic life, with a brand new one which has better air-conditioning.


So when Mr Voter is unemployed next year, due to this government stupidity and wreckage of the jobs-generating free market, he'll be nice and cool when he drives to the dole office.

If he can afford the petrol.

No doubt these subsidies will expand as the economic collapse twists and turns into yet more phases, until we're all living in shanty towns surrounded by Veyrons and Rolls Royces. What politician has ever been able to turn off a subsidy stream once it has been turned on? Oh no, the pain would be too unbearable.

Thanks Lord Mandelson. You are an economic guru.

The unemployment timebomb is quietly ticking

It's been a while since I visited old Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, so I thought today might be a good day to revisit the Keynesian hack with what, for him, is quite a good article.

I did think, however, he needed to be put straight on one or two items:

Jack Maturin on July 06, 2009 at 10:19 AM

"It may be time to put away our texts of Keynes, Friedman, and Fisher, so useful for Phase 1, and start studying what happened to society when global unemployment went haywire in 1932."

It was time to put the Keynes away in 1940, when it was clear that his policies had aggravated the 1929 crash and had turned a one-year possible recession, similar to the 1920-21 crisis, into a ten-year depression.

The reason we are experiencing a similar delayed-effect disaster now, is because so many turned to Keynes in the first stage of this current crisis.

It would all have been over by now if instead we had turned to Mises and Rothbard and their other modern followers in the Austrian School.

Of course, Fisher too failed to spot the 1929 crash, unlike Mises and Hayek, with Fisher actually predicting that the market would go spectacularly up in 1930, so we can rule out his work too, and although Friedman is a lot less bad than Keynes, his insistence on governmental control and constant increase of a fiat paper money supply (which got us into this mess in the first place) also rules him out.

You might say that using Fisher, Friedman, and Keynes for the first phase is what has GIVEN US this second phase, that you are so right to be concerned about.

Unless we want the usual third phase of a world war, spreading out from Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, and rolling up into Russia and down into the Gulf via Iraq, then it is vital that we throw away the failed books of the neo-classicists, the monetarists, and the spectacularly awful Keynesians, and use the books of the one group who understand how this crisis formed, who successfully predicted every twist and turn along the way, and who know how to get us out this mess in the shortest amount of time possible.

Yes, it will mean the severe diminution of government power and control over our lives and the removal of many privileges from the legions of tax eaters who infest our western nations, but what would be so wrong with that? Let's get them all doing something useful for a change, rather than constantly wrecking the lives of the rest of us.

This should be the time of the Austrians. And none of your wishy-washy George Mason or LSE Hayekianism. Things are well beyond that. We need hard-core Austrianism, as popularised by Peter Schiff, Jim Rogers, Marc Faber, Thomas Woods, and the Ludwig von Mises Institute, if we are to come out of this in anything under ten years.

How bad do you think it has to get, Ambrose, over how many years, before anyone in power, or within their court of licensed press, dares to listen to the Austrians? All of the mathematical economists have failed, as they did in the 1930s, as they did in the 1970s, and as they did in Japan.

It is now time to turn to the real economists in the Austrian School, who deal with how real human beings act in the real world rather than with how fictitious and nonsensical numbers can be shuffled around a cyber-space page by hyper-intelligent halfwits and liars, like Ben Bernanke and his ilk.

Drop the Keynes, Ambrose. Open up the Mises.

This generated an interesting response:
Charles Lee on July 06, 2009 at 11:12 AM

For Jack Maturin:

"the removal of many privileges from the legions of tax eaters who infest our western nations, but what would be so wrong with that? Let's get them all doing something useful for a change, rather than constantly wrecking the lives of the rest of us."

I'm sure you're talking about bankers and City folk here, Jack, who've been rescued from their greed and ineptitude with colossal amounts of taxpayer money.
Or would you like to hack to pieces the safety net of the Welfare State that ordinary people rely on?
Once more into the breach:
Jack Maturin on July 06, 2009 at 12:58 PM

For Charles Lee:

"I'm sure you're talking about bankers and City folk here, Jack, who've been rescued from their greed and ineptitude with colossal amounts of taxpayer money.
Or would you like to hack to pieces the safety net of the Welfare State that ordinary people rely on?"

Yes, the banksters of Wall Street and the City are top of the list. Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, AIG, and all of the others are effectively running the central banks and the treasury departments of most western government for their own benefit, and this cosy relationship is at the heart of why we're in such a mess.

But let us not forget the 200 or so BBC executives who earn more than the Prime Minister, or the thousands of quangos, each of which is chaired by someone on a 100,000 plus salary, or the tens of thousands of civil servants on similarly enormous salaries, scattered throughout Whitehall, plus all of the benefits, index-linked final salary pensions, and all of the rest, of the millions of unnecessary bureaucrats who have mushroomed in the last fifty years.

Caesar ran the Roman Republic with a hundred bureaucrats. I think the British managed with a similar number running the Indian subcontinent. In our modern age, it takes about a thousand to run the average hospital. Such are the wonders of modern technology.

Then there are our glorious expense-fiddling MPs, corrupt "Laws For Hire" Lords, and associated hangers-on and apparatchiks, plus all the money we have to waste on keeping the EU gravy train going. Then we have the subsidy junkies and other corporate welfare seekers in many of large industries of Britain, such as in the farming industry, the car industry, and the Big Pharma industry, then there's the colossal monster of the NHS and the hundreds of thousands of useless bureaucrats that it supports, plus the hundreds thousands more in all of the local councils.

Did I mention all of the doctors who have cleaned up with contracts designed to buy them off, or all of the lawyers who have feasted upon the table of human rights legislation?

I'll be happy, Charles, if we tackle all of those above before we get to the millions of people feigning disablement to get extra benefits and the hundreds of thousands of other liars and swindlers who claim every benefit they can get, pretending to be unemployed, while working for cash in the black market.

Then we finally get to what you might call the 'deserving poor' of people who are capable of working, who want to work, and who only use welfare as a last resort. I think we can leave these people out of it for the moment, while we tackle everyone else already mentioned, if that makes you feel any better.

But let's face it, unless we get the great monster of government off our back, and all of the debts, taxes, and regulations, that it is saddling our future with in its bid to retain all of its current crop of parasites, then there are going to be a lot more 'deserving poor' in the next few years, perhaps even including me and you.

And then where will the welfare come from, if tax receipts have cut in half, and nobody is prepared to lend any more money to the British government? Yes, I suppose we could print it all.

Roll on Zimbabwe Britain, the true result of believing in Keynesianism.

In the meantime Charles, perhaps if you haven't checked it out already, you might want to try the Mises too. Here's a link to a free online PDF:

A splendid gentleman writes (I won't quibble about the Keynes stuff):
David Goldsby on July 06, 2009 at 02:05 PM

Jack Maturin at 12.58 pm

You say, "Yes, I suppose we could print it all."

Not only could we print it all, we will, because there is going to be no option, for us or any other developed country.

Otherwise, I agree with most everything you say, but then again, Keynes agreed with virtually everything Hayek said in the Road to Serfdom, which he thought was a great book, with the exception that it was merely a special case of his General Theory, and that in practice, because of 'hoarding' savings and investment only come together at effective full employment by chance once in a blue moon, if ever, unless there is government intervention to prevent 'hoarding', by government control of the money supply and interest rates.

But not to quibble too much - excellent list of wastrels and waste.

Health and safety fears are making Britain a safe place for extremely stupid people

Boris Johnson points out the stupidities of what democracy has done to Britain.

All hail his Bonsoness.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Green Nazis and the carbon footprint of bicycles

Being a regular user of a folding bicycle from Dahon, I am often surrounded by lots of angry environmentalist muppets bearing grim faces as they fight their way through the evil capitalist streets filled with car drivers.

Personally, I use a bike just to try to get a bit fitter. Because as a cycle user in a city, I am probably using up just as much carbon as any car driver.

Unlikely? Well, consider the following.

My bike is made from high quality aluminium, which requires high levels of technology and energy to extract from the ground, though admittedly, this is a lot less energy than even the cheap steel in most cars.

But we follow this with the increased amount of food I eat, to propel myself along the road, all of which has to be grown and transported to my fridge, often in the back of the car I use to visit the supermarket.

Then there's the extra clothing I must purchase, to wear on the bike, plus all of the extra washing this kit needs, due to all of the sweating one does on ones bike.

Worst of all though, and dwarfing all of the above figures, is the amount of braking and accelerating I force car, bus, and truck drivers to do, to avoid hitting me and going around me, as I bumble along at 15 miles an hour or so. On a typical cross-city journey I probably force about a hundred cars to waste energy by braking, and then accelerating.

Do many environmentalist cyclists ever consider this carbon energy loss caused by their behaviour? I'm sure some have. But their solution would be to spend hundreds of billions of pounds building new dedicated cycling highways and then forcing car drivers to purchase bicycles and use them.

This forced use of bicycles would then massively slow down the economy, as so much more time and energy would then be used by people just getting to and from work, rather than generating wealth.

So we would then have an impoverished society dragooned by force, with streets filled with millions of stinking cyclists unable to afford the cost of regular and frequent clothes washing.

Ah, such is the happy world of environmental perfectionism that awaits us. No wonder the miserable cyclists around me look so unhappy. They hate the current world. And all of us are going to hate the world they have planned for us.

Such are the joys of being a Green Nazi.

Happiness ist verboten

The green nazis who are trying to infest our lives with their ridiculous religious propaganda, never seem to stop in their mentally defective stupidities. I found the latest example in today's Labourgraph:

=> Britain 74th in world happiness rankings

Sounds reasonable, you might think, until you actually read the article. Because here's how they measure 'happiness' (my italics):

Rather than measure Gross Domestic Product or GDP, the Happy Planet Index or HPI measures life expectancy, happiness and the environmental impact of different nations.
In 'traditional' happiness surveys, you might agree with me that life expectancy and happiness would be worthwhile candidates for consideration. But environmental impact?

Incredible. You can picture the scene now. A young man has come up with a splendid new business idea to help serve the world better. His idea takes off, and with a large amount of buccaneering entrepreneurial spirit, plus a great deal of sweat, time, and nerve, he makes it all work and generates a huge amount of cash for himself (which is the free market's way of telling you that you're doing the right thing.)

So what does this happy young man do to celebrate his fantastic work in serving the community? Yes, he buys a Bugatti Veyron and sets off on a cross-European 'Grand Tour', visiting the wonderful historical sites of Piza, Florence, Rome, Paris, Vienna, and Athens.

He believes himself to be ecstatically happy as he zooms around the continent, quaffing champagne at five-star hotels and meeting more splendid young ladies than a virile young man can shake a cocktail dress at.

But no, stop there! Secretly, underneath, he is miserably unhappy. Because the Bugatti Veyron that he bought is 'environmentally unsound'. He should have bought a cheap folding bicycle instead. He would have been much happier, for then he would be in much better contact with his soul, which has been alienated by his purchase of the Veyron.

What a lot of Communoid cock. Will these Marxoid/Nazoid environmentalist Gramscians never stop trying to poison our language, to try to brainwash us with their insane green fantasies? I fear not.

In the meantime, if there are any 'miserable' Bugatti Veyron owners out there who feel like becoming much happier by swapping their car for my lightweight aluminium folding bicycle, then I will be happy - sorry, unhappy - to effect the trade.

I shall regard the miserable suffering of owning the Veyron as my own personal white man's burden. It will be my pleasure, sorry displeasure, to help you out from your terrible predicament of enjoying your wealth.

Quote of the day

"The state is a human institution, not a superhuman being. He who says state means coercion and compulsion. He who says: There should be a law concerning this matter, means: The armed men of the government should force people to do what they do not want to do, or not to do what they like. He who says: This law should be better enforced, means: the police should force people to obey this law. He who says: The state is God, deifies arms and prisons."

Ludwig von Mises, Omnipotent Government

Is the state guilty of child kidnap?

In the opinion of Maturin Towers, any child the mafia state abducts is a victim of kidnap, but even 'sensible' people are beginning to come around to this opinion. Christopher Booker reports upon an appalling case in which three children were kidnapped by the mafia for the crime of their father being worried about their safety on the streets of Britain.

Kidnapping children is arguably the worst of all crimes, and likely to send any decent parent into a paroxysm of incoherent anger, desperation, and rage. That we are then expected to stand soberly in a mafia court and mildly await the opinion of mafia judges, police, and social interferers - all of whom have 'targets' to hit - attests to the stupidity and malevolence of everyone taking their pay from the mafia's stolen pelf.

The state and its evil tax-eating denizens are out of control, in this country. They cannot keep the streets safe, apparently their primary 'legitimising' function; they are thus visiting their criminality upon more and more honest people in order to hold onto their power, pelf, and privileges, while they remain afraid of other non-mafia criminals on these self-same streets.

Roll on the day when we can say that we have finally withered them all into nothing.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Strip the Bank of England of its power

It's excellent to see some Austrian-style analysis in a British newspaper, in this case The Times, by New Zealander Jamie Whyte:

=> Strip the Bank of England of its power

So what about the author, Jamie Whyte? Well, I've never come across him before (due to an incomplete lack of Hayekian knowledge) so it was excellent to stumble across him this afternoon, while escaping from the Andy Murray tennis game.

Here's a whole set of Jamie Whyte articles:


Blinking marvellous.

Here's some more links to Jamie Whyte:

=> Wikipedia
=> Corvo Books

Right, back to the Murray game.