Saturday, April 29, 2023

Rejecting Reality


  A Tale Of Two Economies, Dr. Tim Morgan, Surplus Energy Economics, looks at the financial economy and the physical economy. The financial economy is supposed to be an accurately workable representation of the physical economy, but with some time flexibility on the use of money, and the risk and reward relationship over time, which is "investing". The flexibility afforded by the parallel economies is of great advantage to the working of the physical economy because most trades are not equal and are not even in the same place or the same time, like trading harvests of beans for harvests of corn.
  The managers of the financial economy have more leeway than farmers who grow corn and beans. They can use things like fractional-reserve-lending to create money, as long as they hold 10% of the value they create in deposits, to back it up, so that routine withdrawals of cash are covered. Over time, this leeway begets more leeway, and "financial innovation", so that claims on future prosperity greatly exceed the actual potential for future prosperity, even with robust economic growth presumed. Over time the claims keep assuming lots of growth, and keep getting rolled forward, greatly exceeding actual prosperity/wealth, as long as there is not a run on the financial system, as long as the music does not stop, as long as faith in the system persists. This is the same as a Ponzi scheme.
  Physical economy is contracting, since about the second half of 2019, based on various assessments, including oil consumption, CO2 production and financial statistics. Growth has been less than projected for at least 2 decades. Many novel mechanisms have been employed to maintain faith in the system, to keep it operating. It is a global financial system and a global real economy. It is all being nibbled away at every corner, both financially, and in terms of global trade, and the cheap fuel that runs the system is being withdrawn here and there for various "reasons". The ECoE, energy cost of energy, is subtracted from prosperity, as it must be paid first, before energy is made available.
  GDP is more than physical/real economy, debt is more than GDP, and "financial instruments" greatly exceed debt. Since physical economy will actually contract going forward, all of the claims upon it need to be reduced to meet it, somehow. This is done through inflating the money supply to make it worth less, so that debts may be repaid in the financial economy with money that buys much less of the real economy. 

  One can look at the graphics and imagine that "enough" inflation might cover debts in this way over time, but not financial-assets. Financial assets will need to collapse to a large degree. Somebody will pick the losers, which will be corporations, big financial institutions, wealthy individuals, and especially retirement plans. 
  Picking the biggest losers is a political decision. This is the current core problem as I see it. The owners need to extinguish claims on future wealth while maintaining enough faith in the system to keep it functioning, which is necessary to maintain their wealth. When a financial system collapses, nobody works for the money they are proffered, so "wealth" ceases to exist. 
  This economic divergence would sure be easier to settle if a lot of retirees died pretty soon, and if there was a big enough emergency to make everybody just follow orders until the real and financial economies could be organized to match each other better.
  Different groups of owners appear to have different plans for how to manage this. Each alliance of owners/oligarchs would like to impose more losses on the other oligarchic alliances, as well as the retirees. Some countries are fairly unified under an executive, such as Russia, China, Turkey, India, Iran and even Hungary. Oligarchs within the "western financial empire" are mostly divided and unwilling to accept the massive losses necessary to stabilize the western financial system and real-economy. 
  Western finance stagnates, awaiting collapse.

  Moon of Alabama (German)  U.S. Argues For More Protectionism And Subsidies    Thanks Christine. Does this seem realistic?
  Last week Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen gave a speech on the U.S.-China economic relationship. I called it a declaration of war.
  Yesterday National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan held a speech on 'Renewing American Economic Leadership' which touched on some of the same themes as Yellen's speech.
  Sullivan argues that the U.S. must change course from opening markets and liberalization to targeted protectionism and subsidies for specific sectors. The main argument for it is 'national security' but the real aim seems to be the suppression of competition from others...
​..​The U.S., by pressing its 'allies' in Europe and Asia, is trying to deny China the ability to acquire or produce computer chips. The newest lithographic machines The Dutch company ASML produces are now prohibited from export to China. Its CEO says that if the restrictions are held up others will build similar machines​...
​..​Computer chips are not a 'narrow slice of technology'. They are used in many daily products. A modern car has some 1,400 of them. China has been importing chips for $300 billion per year. Confronted with U.S. attempts to block it from access to chips it has ramped up its own production and its imports of chips are now in steep decline​...
​..​Sullivan's whole speech is an argument against free markets and for protectionism and sector subsidies. It does away with the economic framework the U.S. had build after the end of the second world war. This is supposed to be replaced it with bilateral and block wise agreements that are to the advantage of the U.S., to the disadvantage of its agreement 'partners' and which exclude China and other 'hostile' economies.
​  ​The so called 'decoupling' or 'de-risking' from China is actually an attempt to isolate it. It creates a dynamic that will lead to import replacements in China.
​  ​This will lower exports to China from the U.S. and its allies.

​  Michael Hudson on the same topic:  
​  "We must maintain as large of a lead as possible” in high tech sectors like microchips, Sullivan said, previewing new Commerce Department rules released in October that sought to grind Chinese chip development to a halt.
  Spelling the U.S. plan in detail, the Politico article points out that U.S. “policymakers last year considered including up to five major Chinese industries — microchips, artificial intelligence, quantum computing, biotechnology and clean energy.”
  This has nothing to do with national security. The U.S. plan is to use a national security umbrella as an an excuse for economic warfare.
  Martin Sandbu, “Europe has to be much clearer when it comes to China,” Financial Times, April 24, 2023, points out that European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen gave a speech before her trip to China describing it as a systemic rival simply because it is an efficient economic competitor. “But she went much further in threatening to block China’s economic opportunities with Europe if Beijing stays on its current course.”
  “But something is changing,” Mr. Sandbu noted: “‘Access to China’ for EU corporations increasingly means expanding production in China itself, not exporting 5 Yellen and China, April 25, 2023 Europe-made goods and services there. Before the pandemic, EU carmakers shipped about half a million cars to China — but they built 10 times as many European-branded cars there. Some will even con- sider it easier to build electric vehicles there to ship back to Europe than to expand production at home.”
  “The gains from such trade will mainly benefit corporate shareholders in the EU and not the workers, small companies and countries currently tied in to Germany’s car supply chain. Eventually politicians will wake up to the fact that the benefits are not broadly dispersed. Only then are we likely to see economic considerations firmly conditioned on geostrategic interests in EU-China policy. … It is time for Europe to learn that what is good for VW is not necessarily good for Europe.”
  So the anti-China trade strategy is to appeal to labor to support America’s New Cold War against China and the rest of the Global Majority.
  In the U.S. view, socialism is the enemy of labor, not its means of raising its living standards. That is the upside-down logic of what America’s economic students are taught.
  The problem is that America cannot reverse time and undo the enormous burden of debt, privatized monopolies (including health care) and a dysfunctional financial system.
  Korea is being promised a wider U.S. market if it will stop exporting chips to China. It is being forced to choose. The U.S. diplomatic tactic is to say, “You’re either with us or against us.” The US will impose sanctions this autumn if Korean companies continue to produce chips in China. They are being told to close down their factories. 
(Samsung is building a $30+ billion chip factory near Austin, a strategic industrial center to make all kinds of chips, including those previously made for the US military in Taiwan.)

  More from Christine, Gilbert Doctorow , Meeting of the Defense Ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Delhi
​  ​The SCO is one of the two principal bodies that bring together the nations that are today challengers to the US-dominated world order. The other such body is BRICS.
​  ​Whereas BRICS is primarily an economic fraternity with focus on commercial relations among its members, meaning a platform of Soft Power, the SCO is primarily a Hard Power fraternity focusing on the security of its member states. It is also more limited geographically, concentrated on Eurasia. Its founding members were China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Today it also includes Uzbekistan, India and Pakistan. Among the states accorded “observer” status are Afghanistan, Mongolia and Iran. And at its edges as “dialogue partners” are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Egypt, Nepal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka and Turkey.
​  ​There were a couple of outstanding and newsworthy developments at the SCO gathering in India today. One was the speech delivered by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. Several minutes from this speech were carried on Russian news channels and what we heard was Shoigu declaring that from the start of the Special Military Operation in Ukraine the Collective West was throwing all of its military assets against Russia.
​  ​The other noteworthy development was the side meeting of Shoigu and his Chinese counterpart Li Shangfu. They were shown on television walking side by side to that meeting. Russian news tells us that Li used their meeting to extend an invitation to Shoigu to visit him in Beijing, and that Shoigu accepted.​..
..​ Among other things, this spells the end of opportunities for Central Asian states to play Russia off against China in obtaining favors, as Western media believed they were doing. It completely vitiates all efforts by U.S. Secretary of State Blinken over the past several months to pressure these same Central Asian countries into loosening or breaking ties with Moscow. These states are now all caught between a rock and a hard place.
​  ​The drama of the Russian-Chinese entente also will bear on the future conduct of India and Pakistan.

​  From March 9, an important consideration. NATO is reorganizing Europe around a Greater-Poland with western Ukraine, Baltic and Scandinavian states, according to Hungarian PM Viktor Orban's assessment. Russian energy and minerals will be eschewed by industry.
​  ​PM Orbán: Europe's power and economic architecture is being reshaped by the current war
​  Viktor Orbán started out by saying that the current war is also about restructuring Europe's fabric of power and economy and warned that with Europe disconnected from the Russian economy "one dependence has only been replaced by another".
​  ​On this, PM Orbán added that with the possibility of Ukraine joining the EU and NATO in the future, a “previously unseen Central European hub will rise up” that will be Polish-Ukrainian centered.

​  We know it is "yours", but we feel like it is OURS...​  Unease in Israel as US depletes reserve stockpiles to fuel Ukraine war

  Pepe Escobar points out that the use of a currency in trade is different from holding a lot of it as a "financial reserve".
​  ​De-dollarization kicks into high gear​  The US dollar is essential to US global power projection. But in 2022, the dollar share of reserve currencies slid 10 times faster than the average in the past two decades.
​  ​When corporate western media begins to attack the multipolar world’s de-dollarization narrative in earnest, you know the panic in Washington has fully set in.
​  ​The numbers: the dollar share of global reserves was 73 percent in 2001, 55 percent in 2021, and 47 percent in 2022.

Yuan overtakes dollar in China’s cross-border payments
The Chinese currency was used in 48.4% of Beijing’s international settlements
, figures have shown

  ​Decide now whether you can openly support such a tarnished champion. There will be relentless attacks from every direction.​
​  ​'Too much baggage.' How Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s history of drug addiction, womanizing and self-described 'lust demons' makes his run for president a long shot - as even his own powerful family is unlikely to support him, source claims
​  ​Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a prominent anti-vaxxer and son of RFK, is officially challenging Joe Biden for the Democratic nomination
Insiders say he has too much baggage to have a realistic chance of winning due to his history with drugs, womanizing and 'lust demons'

​  Bobby Jr. flew with Jeffrey Epstein an undisclosed number of times, on undisclosed dates, to undisclosed destination(s). "Pedo Island"?​

​  ​ABC News Liberally Censors RFK Jr. Interview Over Vaccine Comments
​  ​ABC News openly censored presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. in an interview that aired Thursday and was later released online.
"We should note that during our conversation, Kennedy made false claims about the COVID-19 vaccines," ABC News Live anchor Linsey Davis said toward the close of the 14:46 minute interview segment.
​  ​"Data shows that the COVID-19 vaccine has prevented millions of hospitalizations and deaths from the disease. He also made misleading claims about the relationship between vaccination and autism. Research shows that vaccines and the ingredients used for the vaccines do not cause autism, including multiple studies involving more than a million children, and major medical associations like the American Academy of Pediatrics and the advocacy group Autism Speaks. We've used our editorial judgment in not including extended portions of that exchange in our interview."

​  ​Megyn Kelly, who left Fox News in 2017​..., weighed in on Carlson's sudden abdication from the reigning top cable news TV show.
Speaking on "The Megyn Kelly Show" on SiriusXM, the former Fox News anchor spoke about Carlson's sudden departure from the network.
​  "I want to, I think break some news for you. Tucker Carlson hasn't actually been fired," Kelly said on her podcast.
​  ​"He's still an employee of the Fox News Channel," Kelly stated. "What happened was Suzanne Scott called him, she's the CEO, on Monday morning and said he was not going to be allowed to do any more shows and that he had been kicked out of his company email."
She added, "And now they're going to have to negotiate an exit, some reporting, to me, suggests that she said it's going to be an amicable parting."
She said that the departure caught Tucker "completely off guard."
According to Kelly, Carlson inquired as to why he was being let go from the cable news network and that they refused "to tell him why."
​  ​Kelly noted that Carlson is "not free to launch a podcast or a digital show or negotiate with other employers at all," adding that he is "still under contract."
Kelly said that Fox News fired Carlson's executive producer, Justin Wells.

 I have long been interested in this, having lived in most of these regions.  ​How about you?​
The American Nations: The United States is Actually 11 Nations​ ​  ​Pfizer & FDA knew about safety concerns for pregnant and nursing women from day one
​  ​The eight-page confidential document was dated April 20, 2021, but tracked 458 pregnant women and 215 lactating women from the time the shots were released until February 28, 2021. That was the same date that Pfizer already recorded over 1,200 deaths and over 1,000 categories of serious adverse events. Here are the gory details, courtesy of Trial Site’s Sonia Elijah.​..​
54% of the 458 pregnant women reported adverse events. These included symptoms in line with AEs experienced by others who took the shots.
​  ​53 of the women (11.6%) experienced miscarriages, which is definitely on the high end of what we should expect.
[Most vaccinated after the first trimester, so should have low rate of pregnancy loss.]
​  ​Most notably, six of the babies experienced serious AEs that Pfizer admitted were caused by the vaccine transferring “transplacentally.” This likely caused them to be born prematurely. So Pfizer knew from day one not only that the shots do not remain in the shoulder muscle and do indeed spread throughout the body, but that the spike protein could spread to​ 
[through]​ ​the placenta.

​  Dr. Marian Laderoute gave expert testimony, which is presented here. It is technical, but clear to a layperson.​
​  ​The Important Differences Between Innate and Adaptive Immunity for Pandemics​ ​
The adaptive immune response to a pathogen never seen before is not very useful. It typically takes 2 to 3 weeks for its full activation whereas the pathogen could have killed the host long before this. That is where the innate immune system, “the first responders” comes in.
​  ​D​r. Laderoute points out data suggesting that the single best support to immune function may be keeping serum vitamin-D levels in the upper half of the normal range.​

Adapting to Life  (pictured in garden after generating some vitamin-D)

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