Stick to Depopulation the Planet, Bill Gates
By Jeff Berwick May 8th, 2012
It must be “Bash Gold” week on the CNBS network. Warren Buffet has been leading the charge by talking down the precious metal in a recent newsletter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders and followed up today on CNBS’s “Squawk Box” where he warned that despite the declining value of the dollar, running to gold is a “mistake.”
Not to be outdone, Buffet’s partner in crime Charlie Munger recently declared “gold is a great thing to sew onto your garments if you’re a Jewish family in Vienna in 1939 but civilized people don’t buy gold – they invest in productive businesses.”
And now, Bill Gates went on CNBS today to try and explain the great error in investing in the barbarous relic. It’s like they’re trotting out the billionaire boys club to scare people back into Berkshire and Microsoft stock.
As they should. Bill’s Microsoft has been absolutely decimated vis-a-vis gold for 12 years straight and running.
Both Buffet and Gates concede that paper money will continue to be debased as long as central banks hold the legal monopoly to print it. What they won’t mention is that such blatant fraud is conducted to finance government deficits and prop up a virtually zombified banking sector.
Gates in particular tries to tie his bumbling rant together by declaring gold has a kind of psychological value to it. That those who buy it are motivated by it because “people in the future will think it’s worth more than it’s worth today.” Gates goes on to point out that as more people flood to the gold market, the more the gold mining sector will develop which will subsequently increase the supply and put downward pressure on prices.
Congratulations Bill, you have stumbled onto some of the most basic lessons of economics.
First, since the value of all goods and services are determined solely by the purely subjective perceptions of utility amongst market participants, gold is no different from any other investment. Many perceive it is a viable currency alternative to the current state of affairs.
Those who put their money in equities do so because they believe it will yield them a return. “Psychological” factors play just as much of a part in this thinking than they do in those who purchase precious metals.
Second, if an investor’s marginal profit is exceedingly high, this is a signal to other market participants that there is money to be made in whatever sector in paying out at such a rate. People move to where they can make a profit. They don’t sit idly by making negligible returns. Supplies increase, prices adjust, and so does the market.
None of that diminishes the purpose of gold which not only acts as an investment but a hedge against the profligacy of governments. The pressure on central banks to flood the world with liquidity is enormous. The practice of fractional reserve banking has left much of the world’s major financial institutions insolvent. Central bankers know of no other solution from their Keynesian instruction guide than “print, print, and print some more.”
If Gates really wants to speak to psychological factors, why not say a word on why inflationary monetary policies are employed to begin with? Indeed, if money printing actually created just one iota of wealth, then Emperor Diocletian (whom Paul Krugman looks to for policy advice) would have led Rome into a period of material abundance rather than wreak havoc on a once thriving market economy.
But of course inflation is purposefully resorted to in order to both aid the first receivers of money and create the perception of prosperity. With some prices boosted relative to others, there is the appearance of ‘feeling richer.” The overall supply of goods hasn’t increased; only the amount of pieces of paper with dead Presidents in circulation. The short term boost in confidence comes at the cost of long term stability as capital is consumed with little savings being accumulated for replenishment. The inevitable bust, as Ludwig von Mises showed, cannot be avoided.
THE END OF THE MONETARY SYSTEM AS WE KNOW IT (TEOTMSAWKI)
As governments continue to binge on endless servings of liquidity financing, there is little threat to gold’s price in the long term. Short term fluctuations are an inherent feature of a market system based on the ever-changing value judgments of billions. There is no conceivable end in sight to inflating currency supplies. If central banks were to stop inflating the house of cards that is the global banking system would collapse.
The question is where you put your trust? In the promises of highway robbers who climb their way into public office through lies and vicious personal attacks? Or in a commodity that has thousands of years of historical usage to prove its functionality as a means of exchange?
Bill Gates puts his faith in the goodness of scoundrels.
IMITATOR, FOLLOWER AND SEARCHING FOR A PURPOSE
The fact of the matter about Bill Gates is that he has never innovated. The only thing he has ever done that paid off incredibly well is this: he finagled his way decades ago into the position of being the sole accepted computer operating system at the very start of the personal computing revolution. Since then he has lived off of having that incredibly powerful position.
He was incredibly slow to realize the power of the internet, he was always second to the party with inferior products like Internet Exploder, Zune and countless other copycat, failed products. He installed a completely insane man to manage Microsoft after he left. And now that he has some extra time on his hands he has decided that
a) the planet needs to be depopulated and
b) he will use a significant amount of his time and power to help depopulate it.
He is pathetically searching for a purpose. And, since he has no idea how economics works, nor money, as he shows in his interview on gold above, he has decided to make depopulation his purpose as he shows in this awkward, ridiculous speech given at TED where he uses all kinds of incorrect premises such as manmade global warming being real to come up with this unbelievably absurd “mathematical” formula:
CO2 = People x Services x Energy Per Service x CO2 Per Energy Unit.
Then he adds that in order to get CO2 to zero, “probably one of these numbers is going to have to get pretty close to zero.” And given that he is spending much of his free time with famous misanthropes such as Ted “A total population of 250-300 million people, a 95% decline from present levels, would be ideal,” Turner, it is pretty clear which one will be the top priority.
It’s the most absurd premise based on the most absurd assumptions I think I have ever heard in my entire life. And his understanding of gold is just as flawed.
Bill Gates, Warren Buffet and Charlie Munger may have once had some sort of relevance. But, today they are globalist shills pathetically trying to keep an immoral and violence/theft based system alive by which their importance and life’s work are tied. The world is leaving them behind… and they will work to enslave it (the Buffet Rule) or genocidally kill it if they have to in order to maintain their sense of self-importance.
Buy gold, sell MSFT and Berkshire Hathaway and fiat dollars, sit tight and be right. The fact they are all running to CNBS in the last few days must mean they are getting desperate.
Statistics: Posted by yoda — Wed May 09, 2012 12:23 am
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by ALEXANDER COCKBURN
Mitt Romney will be the Republican to face President Obama in the fall. Tuesday night was the clincher, as the Mormon zealot won in Wisconsin, Maryland and Washington DC. He may stumble on, but the Catholic zealot Rick Santorum is finished.
It’s hard to detect any alluring feature in Romney’s psychic or political make-up, and I’m none too sure about Ann Romney, who at this stage of the game is filling the role played by the late Elizabeth Edwards in the Edwards campaign on its upward trajectory back in early 2008.
The last Republican challenger to an incumbent Democratic president was Bob Dole in 1996. I always had a soft spot for the guy for his crack, which backfired on him, when he was Ford’s veep nominee in 1976, running against the Carter/Mondale ticket: “I figured it up the other day: If we added up the killed and wounded in Democrat wars in this century, it would be about 1.6 million Americans — enough to fill the city of Detroit.” There was a lot of howling because Dole said “Democrat,” thus diverting attention from the substantive charge which was probably true.
When I was on the Village Voice, James Ridgeway and I went to interview Dole some time in the late 70s when he was one of the most powerful Republicans in the US Senate. I think we wanted him to denounce the New Cold War, then being launched, which he was happy to do because he was from Kansas whose farmers made plenty of money selling grain or corn to the Soviet Union. Though he had a reputation of being a savage conservative, we found him pleasant and very funny and he gave the Voice an hour of his time. Compared to Romney, or Obama for that matter, he sounded like Henry Wallace.
Santorum got roughed up for actually espousing conservative Roman Catholic positions. For some reason Romney is being given a pass as a Mormon, as though his religion is of no consequence, as inconsequential a piece of ideological baggage as Bill Clinton’s Baptist label. Columnists evidently feel it’s poor taste to suggest that a candidate’s religion might have some bearing on his conduct and that the candidate should be properly grilled on the matter.
No doubt in the upcoming campaign Romney will attack Obama for his associations with radicals, the lunatic idea — most recently promoted by the late Andrew Breitbart — being that ex-Weatherfolk Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn imparted to the eager Obama the left’s secret plan to take over the United States and put everyone in slave labor camps, have abortions and engage in unmentionable sexual practices.
Alas, the left never did have a plan – secret or overt — to take over the United States. Abortions and unmentionable sexual practices were a different matter. Ayers’ and Dohrn’s actual role was obviously to help hook up the eager Obama with big Democratic Jewish money in Chicago, directing the attention of the latter to this well-mannered Harvard-educated black politician as someone to watch and assist.
The left never had a secret plan or much discipline. But the Mormons really do have secrets and a lot of discipline. Does Romney espouse Mormon doctrines about gays or not? About obedience to the Prophet or not? If not, then isn’t he a fake Mormon, without a shred of principle. Why should be believe him about anything? If yes, then where does that put his loyalties and priorities as someone hoping to be President of the United States and supposed upholder of the Constitution? (Of course Obama has shredded substantial portions of the Constitution without even the excuse of being a Mormon.)
What about Romney’s associations? He is no ordinary Mormon. By lineage, upbringing and personal decision he’s about as dedicated a Mormon as you can be – which is very dedicated indeed. I urge you to check out the piece by a former Mormon in our current newsletter, which delves into Mormon practices and points out that Romney attends a Mormon temple. Temples are only open to those members who adhere completely to the strict standards of Mormonism, including unwavering loyalty to the president of the church.
“The level of secretiveness surrounding the temples is extraordinary, so much so that members of the Mormon Church who have not been to the temple have virtually no idea as to what they entail…Before Mormon are allowed to enter a temple, they must be interviewed by two separate tiers of ecclesiastical leadership to determine their worthiness to enter these edifices. These so-called temple recommend interviews are the first issue of concern regarding Mitt Romney. Among the various questions asked of a member, one particular question goes as follows: ‘Do you support, affiliate with, or agree with any group or individual whose teachings or practices are contrary to or oppose those accepted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?’ The very nature of this question, coupled with several others regarding complete obedience to the president of the church (or ‘prophet’), put into question the overall allegiance of Mitt Romney (and, indeed, all Mormons). If members are found to be in violation of this question (or any other from the list of questions), they will not be allowed to enter the temple. Being blocked from entering the temple is tantamount to being blocked from Heaven, albeit temporarily (they can always repent).
“Among the various ‘ordinances’ performed in the temples, none are more divisive than the Law of Consecration. This rite requires members to pledge all their time, money, and abilities to the establishment of the kingdom of heaven on earth (the Mormon kingdom). Couple this with the demand to sustain the president of the church as the only prophet seer and revelator on earth, a particularly troubling form of absolute obedience emerges.”
Mormonism aside, Romney’s opportunism in junking previous positions when under conservative pressure has been unremitting. Take the single biggest issue in American politics today, the minimum wage.
If you adjust for inflation, median personal income in America hasn’t moved for almost half a century. Nearly a quarter of US households have zero to negative net worth. It just takes one unlucky turn of the cards—an illness, an accident, a brush with the law—to put them under.
Even though the cost of living has gone up, the federal minimum wage hasn’t moved since 2009, when the last of a series of increases signed into law by George W. Bush kicked in. In 2011 dollars, the minimum wage was more than $10 in 1968, when jobs and pay were peaking for America’s workers.
The current minimum wage ranges between $7.25 and $8.67 per hour. Work a forty-hour week for $7.25 and you end up with $15,080 a year, just above the $11,000 federal poverty line for an individual but well below the $22,000 for a family of four.
In November 2008 President-elect Obama promised to “raise the minimum wage to $9.50 an hour by 2011 and index it to inflation to make sure that full-time workers can earn a living wage that allows them to raise their families and pay for basic needs such as food, transportation, and housing, things so many people take for granted.” It was a pledge to low-paid workers to give them a 30 percent pay hike. Of all Obama’s betrayals, this was one of the bitterest. He never really tried, skittish with fear that he’d be nailed by the Big Business lobbies and their creatures in Congress as an inflationeer.
If ever there was an issue on which Romney could get real traction with the blue-collar voters who liked Santorum it’s the minimum wage. As Ron Unz, publisher of The American Conservative put it:
“these days a crucial component of the Republican electorate consists of working-class whites, often strongly religious ones, who tend to live in non-unionized low-wage states or otherwise generally subsist, sometimes with considerable difficulty, on the lower rungs of the economic ladder. Proposing a large wage increase to a socially conservative evangelical Christian who works at Walmart and currently struggles to pay her bills would be the sort of simple, clear message that might easily cut through an enormous amount of ideological clutter. That was in The American Conservative.”
Informally to me he adds,
“One of the more ridiculous aspects of the situation is that none of the rich banksters actually care about the minimum wage, and might not even have heard of it. After all, none of their friends or employees are anywhere near MW territory. None of their nannies earn WM. I even doubt that even any of their nannies’ nannies are paid anything like the current MW. On the other side, if the MW wage were raised to something like $12/hour, lots of Americans would use some of the money to try to catch up on their delinquent credit-card bills, which would make most of the banksters pretty happy. So they’d probably support a boost in the MW…except that the paid-ideologues in conservative DC thinktanks would warn them that it would totally wreck the American economy.” (As I’ve noted before, I count Unz as a friend, supportive of left ventures such as CounterPunch as well as of The American Conservative, whose tiller he took over in 2007.)
The left economist James K. Galbraith, picking up Unz’s suggestion of a hike to $12, writes:
“What would workers do with the raise? They’d spend it, creating jobs for other workers. They’d pay down their mortgages and car loans, getting themselves out of debt. They’d pay more taxes — on sales and property, mostly — thereby relieving the fiscal crises of states and localities. … Women in particular would benefit because they tend to work for lower wages…Working families would have more time for community life, including politics; Because payroll- and income-tax revenues would rise, the federal deficit would come down. Social Security worries would fade.”
Romney was well positioned. In January of this year he said at a campaign event in New Hampshire that he favored raising the minimum wage automatically each year to keep pace with inflation. He could have built on this, just as Reagan did in his 1980 campaign with entirely factitious economic populism. But no. A couple of whacks from the Wall Street Journal and fears of being pilloried as a liberal saw Romney flop on the issue at the start of March. Now he wants the wage to stay at $7.25, with no indexing for inflation. In other words, he wants poor people to earn less every year.
In his first bid for the nomination in 2008 Romney’s foreign policy positions were relatively demure. This time he’s swerved into palaeolithic Cold War conservatism, rivaling McCain’s in 2008. Near the end of March he was bellowing that “Russia is America’s number 1 geopolitical foe.” He wants to keep troops in Afghanistan and bomb Iran – this last a predictable bow to the Israel lobby.
In February, president Obama trailed Romney in the top 12 swing states, 46 to 48 percent. Last week a USA Today/Gallup poll reported that in these same swing states a majority of registered voters now favor Obama by 9 points. According to the USA Today/Gallup pollsters the biggest change came from women younger than 50, where the president now leads Romney by 2–1. Not long before the poll was taken, Romney, fending of attacks from Santorum, said he wants to get rid of Planned Parenthood and endorsed the Blunt amendment, which would have allowed employers to deny coverage of contraception on religious grounds.
Romney has beaten off all challengers, but now he sports all their most unalluring features. The Obama camp is not unhappy. Most progressives watch with complacency the suicidal Republicans heading over the cliff. Let them step back and look at the desperation of millions of Americans today. Will they stay loyal and inert right through to November?
Statistics: Posted by yoda — Wed Apr 11, 2012 12:42 pm
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