Monday, March 27, 2023

Alternative Analysis

 Analytically Minded,

  Thanks for this, Eleni. I had suspected that Russian diplomacy lay quietly beneath the surface.
  The Middle East Frees Itself From the West
​  ​The reconciliation between Saudi Arabia, leader of the Sunni Muslim world, and Iran, leader of the Shiite Muslim world, finally makes possible an era of peace in the Middle East. It was made possible by Russia, ally of the two enemy brothers, and negotiated first in Iraq and Oman before being concluded by China, Iran’s millennial ally, acting impartially. This agreement closes eleven years of wars and Western influence.​..​
..For 7 years, the Middle East has been paralyzed. No conflict can evolve because it always opposes the two sides of Islam. This is exactly what the West wanted and what Israel has maintained. It is not surprising, therefore, that the only people who have been outraged by the Saudi-Iranian peace are Israelis.
  The agreement just signed was negotiated by China on the basis of non-interference in internal affairs. The Iranians might have feared that the Saudi Shiites would pay the price, as they did six years ago with Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr. But Tehran has understood that times have changed. Riyadh will respect its Shiite minority, because it too has an interest in peace.

​  This military assessment of global finance and economics by the lead general of the Chinese military college, published in Italian in 2017, reflects a major theme in long term Chinese strategic assessment of global economy and finance. It looks at the $US taking over the imperial currency baton from the British Empire after Bretton Woods, then leveraging that to the Petrodollar regime in 1973, after having to default on the gold standard because of expensive wars in Korea and especially Vietnam. 
  Tying the dollar-dominance to the flow of oil, the most critical economic resource in the world, without having to "own" the oil, facilitated the rapid growth of an imperial regime of resource extraction, part of it through cycling 10 years of cheap/easy dollars to fund industrial expansion, such as in Mexico and Thailand, then following with a crisis, and 6 years of expensive, high interest dollars, to crash the businesses and buy up their assets for pennies on the dollar.
  China played along, while carefully guarding against victimhood. Meanwhile, the productive economy of the US hollowed out, which happens with any global reserve currency over time, due to "Triffin's Paradox".​
​  The $US financial regime has made financial attacks on the Euro, Iraq, Libya, and has limited Chinese regional trade potential by creating crises in the islands of the South China Sea​. Crises are used by the empire to deprive rivals of the ability to take $US financial hegemony. Having global trade currency hegemony allows users of the currency to be forced into losing positions. The wars of choice the US has engaged in have not been for oil or specific resources. The general makes the case that all of the wars have served the currency hegemony, which is the wealth-extraction tool.
  China has long maintained that it did not want the Yuan/Renminbi to be a global reserve currency, a wise position, in order to avoid attack. This paper makes clear that General Liang sees the global reserve currency status as the prize for having the biggest, most dynamic economic engine, and that the Chinese Yuan/Renminbi should logically have that status, when Chinese and linked economies achieve critical mass. 
  The contest between the US and China was already seen as inevitable in 2017, and that was not new. The US military had seen it approaching, expected around 2024 - 2025, which is what the US military has recently said again.  Thanks Noirette. Google translate works.
​One Belt,One Road , General Qiao Liang​

  Christine sends this recent piece by Michael Hudson, an outline of his recent book, The Collapse of Antiquity: Greece and Rome as Civilization’s Oligarchic Turning Point, about the history of debt and war in the west over the past few thousand years, beginning with the rise of financial oligarchs, more interested in power gains, than in societal stability and cohesion. (Michael Hudson is highly regarded in Washington for his book "Super Imperialism", which provided the analytical framework for the Nixon-Kissinger "petrodollar" deal in 1973. He is highly regarded in China for this same and subsequent analysis of global capital movements. General Liang drew liberally on Hudson's work in the analysis above.)
  The aim is to make governments borrow from bankers and bondholders, giving them interest as well as control over what gets funded.
​  ​The ideological umbrella for this power grab is to accuse governments of interfering with “free markets,” that is, with the financial sector’s ability to act as society’s central planner in allocating credit. Debt creation is seen only as helping economies grow, not as inflating asset prices for housing, stocks and bonds, obliging homebuyers and retirees to run further into debt to afford access to housing and retirement income. Society’s economic ideology is transformed to accept the concentration of wealth in creditor hands as a natural phenomenon, not a predatory power grab at the expense of society’s overall prosperity.
​  ​Automatic stabilizers are said to make government regulation unnecessary, and credit (that is, debt creation) is depicted as productive, not corrosive. What really is at issue is not whether governments are strong or weak as such, but whether they act in the broad public interest to limit creditor claims on the increasingly indebted economy, or protect creditor privileges as “rights” over those of debtors. It is as if business “cycles” do not recur in the context of steadily rising debt/income and debt/asset ratios.
​  ​Credit can finance economic growth best when organized as a public utility. But private creditors and bankers seek financial gains for themselves, maximizing claims on debtors without limit. A jockeying for dominance ensues as the magnitude of debt grows to exceed the ability of debtors to pay. Private creditors translate their economic gains into political power, polarizing the distribution of wealth and income by deregulating and untaxing financial gains. These laws of motion produce an oscillation between financial drives gaining dominance over society and a reaction by society as it realizes that the “cleanup costs” of debt are much like those of physical environmental pollution, pushing the overall social balance into deficit.
​  ​The interaction between financial dynamics and the economy at large has changed the character of government throughout history. Mesopotamian rulers annulled grain debts, but classical antiquity’s oligarchies used state power to prevent debt cancellation. Christianity took the side of debtors, but the medieval papacy supported English kings, excommunicating advocates of parliamentary checks and balances. Subsequent creditors pressed for parliamentary reform to make entire nations responsible for paying debts, but pressure is rising today to restore public control to subordinate debts – and hence their counterpart creditor claims on debtors – to social needs.

​  But when, Charles, WHEN? (Is the Powell Fed raising interest rates until something breaks, then patching what it wants, to impose losses on non-allies?)
​  The Everything Bubble and Global Bankruptcy
​  ​Sorry, but global bankruptcy is already baked in. Too much debt has been piled on phantom-collateral and income streams derived from bubble assets rising (for example, capital gains, development taxes, etc.). The asymmetry is now so extreme that even a modest decline in asset valuations/collateral due to a garden-variety business-cycle recession of tightening financial conditions will trigger the collapse of The Everything Bubble and the mountain of global debt resting on the wind-blown sands of phantom collateral.
​  ​There are persuasive reasons to suspect global debt far exceeds the official level around $300 trillion, most saliently, the largely opaque shadow banking system. When assets roughly double in a few years, bubble symmetry suggests that valuations will decline back to the starting point of the bubble in roughly the same time span.
​  ​The resulting erosion of collateral will collapse the global credit bubble, a repricing/reset that will bankrupt the global economy and financial system.

​  ​The secretive Israeli think tank behind Netanyahu’s judicial overhaul​    Thanks Christine. Lots of details of Israeli domestic politics are elucidated here.
​  ​The Kohelet Policy Forum, founded by an American Israeli and funded by a U.S. libertarian billionaire, quietly authored and helped introduce the far-reaching package of judicial changes that has sparked a national crisis and driven hundreds of thousands of Israelis into the streets.
​  ​Likud member Keti Shitrit, in a recent interview with Israel’s Channel 13, said Netanyahu’s party never internally discussed the judicial overhaul bills supplied by Kohelet before fast-tracking them through the parliament.

​  ​Netanyahu Pauses Judicial Overhaul To "Avoid Civil War" As Rival Protest Groups Clash
​  ​[Who comprises the "extremist minority", "tearing Israel apart", ​Mr. Prime Minister​?​ Your enforcers are deserting now. That has gotten your attention.​]
​  ​In a much anticipated 8pm (local) speech, at a moment hundreds of thousands of protesters are in the streets, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed in a televised speech that he will pause his ultra-controversial judicial overhaul plans which many say would destroy Israeli democracy and court independence.
​  ​He emphasized that he is aware of the deepening divide and tensions in society as a result of the legislation, but called the anger in the streets the product of an "extremist minority" that is "tearing Israel apart." The crisis not only resulted in massive national strikes on Monday, but escalated to the point of growing numbers of refusals of recruits and soldiers to serve in the Israeli Defense Force's reserve units, putting the country's security in peril.

  ​It was established forensically that the rapid downloads of the emails had to be from a memory device attached to a computer, not a "hack"​, but a leak.
Seth Rich was working for the DNC, and was murdered on his way home from a work party at a bar, leaving his smartphone and credit cards on him.
  The analysis has been that Seth Rich, deeply offended at the disenfranchisement of Sanders voters in 2016, sent the Clinton-Podesta emails to wikileaks.
Seth was Jewish, and might have also provided the information to the Mossad. The Mossad seems to have had it, and used it to influence the 2016 election.
(Is this why Biden won't invite Netanyahu for a state-visit?)  The FBI still has a couple of Seth Rich's computers. Can we see the contents, please? 
Moon of Alabama has the story.
​  ​There was no 'Russian intervention' in the 2016 election but an Israeli intervention that was all over the place. As usual the deep state covered that up:
​  ​Throughout this chain of events—including the trial, the Mueller Report, and the nearly 1,000-page Senate Intelligence Committee Report—no hint of the involvement of Israel was made public. Despite the clear violations of US law and months of clandestine, high-level attempted interference in the presidential election, no details were released, and no congressional hearings or investigations took place. Nor was there ever a hint in the press, which remained transfixed by Russia.
​  ​The evidence, however, suggests that throughout the summer and into the fall of 2016, Israel illegally interfered in the US presidential election. A top agent of Netanyahu was secretly offering intelligence and other covert assistance to Trump to get him elected—all with virtually no oversight or scrutiny by the FBI or the US media, though both had numerous personnel in Israel at the time.
​  ​Finally, nearly 8 years after it happened, we have for the first time a reasonable explanation for the 'hacks' and releases of the Clinton, DNC and Podesta emails. Natanyahoo's agents did that in exchange for political concessions to Israel by Trump.
​  ​Those Israeli agents will have had a great time laughing about the 'Russian intervention' nonsense the U.S. public has fallen for.

  ​Thanks Eleni in Athens:  Poll shows several NATO members would feel safer under Russian military alliance
​  ​A new poll reveals that NATO's controversial eastward expansion hasn't really gone according to plan. Former Warsaw Pact member Bulgaria and former Yugoslav Republic Slovenia, which both joined NATO in 2004, say that they would feel safer being defended by the Russian military in the event of war than they would by NATO.
​  ​Perhaps more worryingly for NATO top brass are Turkey and Greece. Both joined the alliance in 1952 and have a history of being at odds with each other (to put it mildly) say that they too would feel safer being defended by Russia in the event of war.

​  The mud might be dry in May, but if there are not enough men and equipment, there can be no spring offensive. The west cannot send what it does not have, so is this a prelude to capitulation?​ Who will get blamed, if so?
President Volodymyr Zelensky has said Ukraine's counter-offensive against Russia cannot start until Western allies send more military support.

​  ​Seymour Hersh Accuses US of 'Cover Up' Over Nord Stream Sabotage​   (Blaming Biden w​ould be easy. Then what?)
​  ​The veteran investigative journalist alleged that Biden administration officials have been "feeding" the press false stories to "protect a president who made an unwise decision and is now lying about it."

​  Things like this are usually whitewashes, like the 9/11 Commission, and the Warren Commission, but young athletes keep "dying suddenly".​ Limited hang-out?
​  ​The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) has appointed a committee to review evidence on the relationship between the vaccines and specific adverse events that have occurred after vaccination, including infertility and sudden death.
The committee’s process includes establishing methods, reviewing literature, drawing conclusions, and preparing a report.
“The committee will make conclusions about the causal association between vaccines and specific adverse events,” the NASEM website states.
​  ​While their work is funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the sponsors will not be able to examine the report before it is published to the public, Kathleen Stratton, a NASEM official, said during a recent meeting.
​  ​“What that means is that if a sponsor doesn’t like what the committee has to say—the conclusions of the committee—… the sponsor can’t prevent the report from being made public,” Stratton said. “This is a very powerful tool that we have.”

​Drawing Independent Conclusions (took this picture of Jenny with vegetables)​


  1. The poll you cited re NATO is from 2022 and the article "citing" it refers to Trump as president and the previous summer with Obama as president. So, I am left wondering about the validity of the statement about Russia being better at defending certain European countries.

    I think this is all pre-Ukraine war and in fact one of the "benefits" of the war is the anti-Russian feelings stirred up by it.

    1. Thank you for pointing out the date, Albert.
      A good friend sent that, and it did puzzle me a little, but that clarifies the situation.