Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Monday, November 28, 2011

Banksters have moved in

According to the Economic Policy Journal, here’s what you need to know about the current crisis in the Eurozone. The big time banksters are getting direct hands-on control:

Mario Draghi (photo) has become president of the European Central Bank as of November 1. He was vice chairman and managing director of Goldman Sachs International and a member of the firm-wide management committee. He was the Italian Executive Director at the World Bank. He has been a Fellow of the Institute of Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

Lucas Papademos has taken over as Prime Minister of Greece. He was an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. He was a visiting professor of public policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. And, he was previously a vice president of the European Central Bank. He has been a member of the Trilateral Commission since 1998.

Mario Monti has succeeded Silvio Berlusconi as prime minister of Italy. Monti completed graduate studies at Yale University, where he studied under James Tobin (see the Tobin Tax). He is a member of the European Commission. He is European Chairman of the Trilateral Commission and and member of the Bilderberg Group.

If you get the sense that the elitist banksters are going to take this financial crisis and push it in whatever direction they want, you are probably correct.

European debt crisis explained

Men were not meant to fly - or were they?

Big bankers' paradise

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Goldman Sachs Has Taken Over

By Paul Craig Roberts

On November 25, two days after a failed German government bond auction in which Germany was unable to sell 35% of its offerings of 10-year bonds, the German finance minister, Wolfgang Schaeuble said that Germany might retreat from its demands that the private banks that hold the troubled sovereign debt from Greece, Italy, and Spain must accept part of the cost of their bailout by writing off some of the debt. The private banks want to avoid any losses either by forcing the Greek, Italian, and Spanish governments to make good on the bonds by imposing extreme austerity on their citizens, or by having the European Central Bank print euros with which to buy the sovereign debt from the private banks. Printing money to make good on debt is contrary to the ECB's charter and especially frightens Germans, because of the Weimar experience with hyperinflation.

Obviously, the German government got the message from the orchestrated failed bond auction. As I wrote at the time, there is no reason for Germany, with its relatively low debt to GDP ratio compared to the troubled countries, not to be able to sell its bonds. If Germany's creditworthiness is in doubt, how can Germany be expected to bail out other countries? Evidence that Germany's failed bond auction was orchestrated is provided by troubled Italy's successful bond auction two days later.
Full article posted here

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The pattern continues

On November 9th TransAlta Corp. admitted it manipulated electricity prices in Alberta forcing consumers to pay an extra $5.5 million for electricity. TransAlta negotiated its own penalty [settlement] for its transgressions and paid a fine of $370,000. Additionally, TransAlta gets to keep the details of its illegal actions confidential and out of the public eye.

On November 12th TransAlta’s CEO, Steve Snyder, wrote in the Calgary Herald, “We did not intentionally breach any rules or regulations. We misinterpreted rules around the competitive business of electricity trading”.

How does a company commit a $5.5 million dollar offense against the rate paying public and then negotiate a $370,000 penalty? What’s to prevent TransAlta from committing the same offense again and again if the penalty amounts to no more than a 7% fee, otherwise known as a cost of doing business?

The Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) and the Market Surveillance Administrator (MSA) are the two government created corporations responsible for overseeing Alberta’s electricity market. Both claim to be independent, and yet both have consistently sided with industry to the detriment of the rate paying public. The AESO is currently seeking a court judgment to limit the public’s right to attend rate increase hearings. AESO and the MSA are the very same organizations that couldn’t find any wrong doing when electricity prices spiked from $14.50 to $223.80 per megawatt in 2000. The comedic investigation was made all the more ridiculous after irrefutable evidence surfaced in 2005 [tape-recorded conversations] between TransAlta and Enron Employees. The tape recordings recorded employees engaged in the manipulation of market prices.

TransAlta’s market manipulation behavior has not been limited to Alberta. On June 25, 2003 the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a "Show Cause" order to TransAlta alleging that TransAlta manipulated electricity prices, along with Enron, leading to wide spread power outages in California. In a subsequent lawsuit, California’s Attorney General claimed that TransAlta charged rates in the California electricity markets that were unjust, unreasonable, and therefore illegal, and did so on thousands of occasions.

The FERC chose not to prosecute TransAlta because TransAlta claimed it profited less than $10,000. What has never been reconciled or explained to the public is how TransAlta, a multi-billion dollar company, was able to report nefarious profits of 89% in one quarter and 133% in one six-month time frame while it was manipulating market prices, and yet only make less than $10,000 in illegal profits.

Can Albertans trust what TransAlta or AESO executives tell us? These are the very same people that still claim the Bill-50 transmission lines are not being built to subsidize export. They tell Albertans this even after TransAlta received approval, on July 12, 2010, to export on average 48,000 megawatt hours each day ~ for the next ten years. [Alberta’s daily demand averages between 6,000 to 8000 megawatts hours.]

Alberta’s deregulated electricity system has been a disaster from the beginning. From one scandal to another including offenses of spying on citizens and market price manipulation, the system has fallen into disrepute. The organizations responsible for overseeing the system are ineffective and at times incompetent.

Albertans need an independent public inquiry into the abuses that plague Alberta’s electricity system. The public should be refunded for what they have been overcharged!

Joe Anglin
Rimbey, AB
(403) 963-0521

Monday, November 21, 2011

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Kosovo - a Serbian perspective

NATO's intervention in the ethnic conflict in Kosovo fits a well established pattern. Article published here

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Friday, November 4, 2011