Vail Valley Voices: Big bankstas game the system
Vail, CO, Colorado
By now, everybody has heard that the government’s “bank stress tests” have revealed that the cadre of criminals who tanked the nation’s economy urgently needs more of our money.
These losers, through their unrepentant paper loss of hundreds of trillions of dollars, gambled away using with other people’s retirements on things like the price of tea in China on a Tuesday, the weather on Super Bowl Sunday and whether they and their pals could survive such unrestrained betting and stay in business at all.
Now they need even more no-strings taxpayer cash, according to their representatives in Washington who run the federal reserve and treasury.
The recent “stress tests” reveal that the bankster class “needs” billions and billions more, from the same people they’ve looted already, to cover their company’s gambling losses.
OK, to be perfectly honest, it wasn’t gambling, by definition. The banksters — our best and brightest — had to foresight to get their government to pass a law excluding the trading of “derivatives” from both securities and gaming law before they rolled up their sleeves and started tossing our dice in the gutters of global finance.
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The results were predictable and are undeniable. The country’s top 10 banks have now failed, completely, and cannot open the doors each day without millions of dollars per hour in public funding. The boys at the top of the pyramid scheme who profited beyond comprehension by skimming the pot before the crash are still profiting. How?
The old-fashioned way, of course. After rolling up their sleeves, Wall Street’s looters bought and paid for the best “insurance policy” to be purchased. They installed their own Federal Reserve chairman, secretary of the treasury, president’s chief economic advisor and bought much of the Congress.
This august governing group has grown quite comfortable with their regular dole from Wall Street. Rather than staunch the banks’ bleeding of the citizens, the government of and for the banks is bleeding the nation dry to preserve the cash flow into the wallets of their Wall street bankster friends. This assures a continued cash flow into own campaign coffers and beefs up stock portfolios bulging with bank stocks.
Sen. Dick Durbin summed it up well when he stated that the big banksters literally “own Washington.”
What was this “stress test,” you ask? How can a bank fail after trillions in bailouts and guarantees? Simple: The banks still can’t borrow billions of dollars more from the “private sector,” which is each other and their insider hedge funds, to prop up their balance sheets.
They won’t loan each other money, as if borrowed money was an asset, and now it’s your problem. The government’s test for “financial health” today is the simply ability of known insolvent, failed losers to go further into debt.
The solution to their continued failure? More taxpayer money for them!
New York’s top five banks are sitting on over $200 trillion in bad bets on “not-gaming, not-securities derivatives” right now. That’s about 10 times the country’s gross domestic product per year.
Changes in accounting rules won’t clear this type of thing. They made bets of stated amounts and they lost. They owe most of the money to each other, having skimmed commissions and fees from the “profits” of selling the “insurance” they called credit default swaps.
These bogus “insurance policies” were written in large part to guarantee the bad loans they made to each other in order to speculate on other things, like subprime mortgages.
And you — yes, you — are going to pay those losses off if they maintain their present control of the government’s policy.
How? Taxes. Even if you’re in trouble yourself.
Say you lose your job or your business due to the banksters’ great recession and then lose your home. You give the keys to the bank and let them foreclose. Mortgages settled at amounts less than face value outside of a bankruptcy proceeding represent a gain that is fully taxable.
So if your $900,000 mortgage is settled for, say, $700,000, the bank will send a 1099 form to Mr. Geithner’s treasury stating that you own income tax on the $200,000 difference. If you can’t pay the tax, one-third of which is presently being budgeted for Wall Street, you might even go to jail. Tax debt is serious.
Banks are insolvent because of a collapse of fraudulent, negligent speculation. Now that their casino has gone bust, crashing the national economy built around their gaming tables, the government has arrived with sirens and flashing lights not to clean up the catastrophe but to try to revive it by shoveling money at the broken casino’s operators!
The casino operators of course do what they have always done, skim off the cream and start the wheels of fortune again, creating a monumental bear market rally of paper gains through which, assisted by changes in general accounting rules granted by their friends in government, they claim instant returns to profitability.
The rest of the country, hoping this travesty can continue long enough for their own retirement accounts to approach something worth cashing out, holds its breath, wondering when to call the brokerage and yell, “Sell it all. Now!”
Millions of people are no doubt wondering, “Will these clowns manage to get the Dow back to 9,000 or 10,000 or wherever it was when I was feeling OK with my future? If they do, man I am out of here! I know 14,000 won’t happen again, but if I can just get out with something. …”
Some will time it right. Most won’t. It is simple probability.
That’s what this little equity market bear market bubble is about. It’s a contrived “pump, then dump” play for the casino operators to make one last cash grab using taxpayer bailout money before they jump off a severely listing ship and into other investments.
Judging by the bare shelves in the ammunition departments at the local sporting goods stores, it appears many are already betting on chaos. It’s some animal instinct, perhaps, that tells us once the old way of investing capsizes it will be longer than we have until retirement for this Titanic to rise to the surface again. The people who now own virtually all of the handgun and rifle ammunition are betting that, like the real Titanic, it won’t.
Bernanke, Geithner and Summers, all Wall Street lifer-insiders and multi-millionaires because of it, will do nothing but shovel seemingly endless amounts of public funds into the Wall Street casino regardless of the long term damage this is beginning to have on the nation and our money’s value. If these guys don’t symbolize a coup, a complete takeover of government by the financial industry, nothing will.
The government now says a big bank is “stressed” if its fellow banksters won’t loan it billions. The creditors, of course, would be fellow banksters who know the real value both their bank, their friends’ banks and that holding the taxpayers hostage for their losses will pay as much — to them — than even the route to amazing riches they took when skimming the till before they broke their sham banks.
The banking industry’s solution, as implemented by government? Not an FDIC takeover, the normal solution for bad banking, but billions more to the banksters so that they can launder these public funds through their books and then make the “loans” to each other deemed needed by their personal government for “healthy banking,” while skimming the interest from this taxpayer-provided money, again.
Meanwhile, long-term dollar-denominated interest rates are already climbing in spite of everything the finance industry’s government is doing to suppress this, since the rest of the world’s investors are slowly waking up from the delusion of Borrowing Your Way To Riches. Our “stress test” grading system which props up the same failed casino game, more borrowing, is a hoax and it seems everyone but we Americans who are paying the tab have figured that out.
Bill Sepmeier is a longtime Eagle County resident who lives in Sweetwater.