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Wanna know what determines the “SOUL” of a Nation??? October 6, 2013

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“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul”, Nelson Mandela says, “than the way in which it treats its children”.

Who would disagree?

Yet today children may be assaulted, diseased, or killed by pervasive corporate drugs, junk-foods and beverages, perverted by mindless violence in multiple modes, deployed as dead-end labour with no benefits, and then dumped into a corporate future of debt enslavement and meaningless work. How could this increasing systematic abuse be publicly licensed at every level? What kind of society could turn a blind eye to its dominant institutions laying waste the lives of the young and humanity’s future itself?

The abuse is built into the system. All rights of child care-givers themselves – from parent workers to social life support systems – are written out of corporate ‘trade’ treaties which override legislatures to guarantee “investor profits” as their sole ruling goal. Children are at the bottom, and most dispossessed by the life-blind global system. The excuse of “more competitive conditions” means, in fact, a race to the bottom of wages and benefits for families, social security, debt-free higher education, and protections against toxic environments to which the young are most vulnerable. At the same time, escalating sales of junk foods, malnutrition, and cultural debasement propel the sole growth achieved – ever more money demand at the top.

The mechanisms of abuse are not tempered by reforms as in the past, but deepened and widened. Omnibus Harper budgets stripping even scientific and social fact-finding bodies and transnational foreign corporate rights dictated in the name of “Trans-Pacific Partnership” and “Canada-Europe Trade Agreement” advance the Great Dispossession further. An unasked question joins the dots, but is taboo to pose. What war, ecological or social collapse is not now propelled by rapidly creeping corporate rights to loot and pollute societies, ecosystems and – least considered – the young?

I explain the entire system in the expanded second edition of the Cancer Stage of Capitalism. Omnivorous money sequences of the corporate rich multiply through their life hosts overriding social life defenses at every level and silencing critics. None are bound to serve any life support function but only to maximize profits.

They surround, they intimidate, they bribe and threaten with corporate lobby armies to overrun legislatures and launch attack ads and wars with the mass media as their propaganda vehicles. All the classical properties of bullying abuse are there – pervasive one-way demands, ganging up, threats of force, false pretexts, weaker opponents picked on and exploited, and brutal attack of what resists.

Yet bullies are seen only among the young themselves, while government in the interest of children’s well-being is increasingly sacrificed to the fanatic doctrine that the market God’s “invisible hand” is Providence and all commodities are “goods”.

How Corporate Abuse Moves to the Insides of Children

Recall General Electric frontman and U.S. president Ronald Reagan broadcasting the post-1980 war against unions, peace activists, environmentalists, and any community not subservient to U.S. corporate rights.

Tiny and starving Nicaragua which had arisen against U.S.-backed tyranny by bringing public education and health benefits to poverty-stricken children was singled out for example. “All they have to do is say ‘Uncle’, Reagan smirked to the press when questioned on what Nicaragua could do to stop the U.S. attacks. They did not and the U.S. mined their central harbour and financed Contras with drug money for weapons to attack and burn the schools and clinics.

The Reagan government and the media then ignored the six-billion dollar judgement of the International Court of Justice against the war crimes and the false claim of “self defense”. Abusers always continue if not named and children are always the primary victims.

With now the bank-engineered collapse of social-democratic Europe, oil-rich opponents cleared for corporate looting across the Middle East, and the Earth’s primary life support systems in slow motion collapse, you think we are apt to overlook the direct corporate invasion of the minds and bodies of children.

As in other areas, “giving them what they want” is the justification. And all the buttons are pushed to hook the young to addictive corporate products – child and adolescent fear of being left out, addictive desires for more sugar, salt and fat, primeval fascination with images of violence and destruction, craving for attention in stereotypical forms, inertial boredom with no life function, the loss of social play areas by the great unfunding, restless compulsion to distraction, and black hole ego doubts. All the enticements to addictive and unhealthy products form a common pattern of child abuse, and it is far more life disabling than any in the past. Beneath detection, a pathogenenic epidemic grows.

In response to commodity diseases from skyrocketing obesity and unfitness to unprecedented youth depression and psychological numbing to violence, almost no public life standards of what is pushed to the young are allowed into the super-lucrative market. Even while children’s growing consumption of multiplying junk foods, big pharma drugs, and life-destructive entertainments addict them to what may in the end ruin their lives, preventative life standards are furiously lobbied against. As Joel Bakan’s Childhood Under Siege/ How Big Business Targets Your Children shows, the systemic abuse is ignored, denied and blocked against public regulation. Even with deadly diabetes by junk foods and beverages and hormonal disruption and body poisoning by the countless untested chemicals, materials and drugs fed into their lives, the young find no protection from this systemic growth of corporate abuse, not even mandatory packaged information to prevent their still rising profitable hedgemony of body and mind.

Understanding Corporate Child Abuse as Systemic Pathology

Bakan’s classic film and book, The Corporation, has revealed step by step the “corporation as psychopath”. Professor of law as well as parent, he recalls the “overarching idea” of modern civilization which has been aggressively pushed aside: “that children and childhood need the kind of public protection and support that only society could offer” (p. 164). Now he observes, the big corporations are “free to – – pitch unhealthy ideas and products- – to pressure scientists and physicians to boost sales of their psychotropic drugs – – – to turn children’s environments – indeed their very bodies – into toxic stews – – and to profit from school systems increasingly geared to big business” (p. 164). Horrendous hours and hazards of child labour are what has long attracted attention, and Bakan reports that these are returning today (e.g., pp. 129-38).

R.D. Laing’s classic Massey lecture, The Politics of the Family goes deeper than issues of child labour by arguing that the young are made to live inside a dramatic play whose roles are mapped from one generation to the next. They are “good” or “bad” as they follow or resist the roles imposed on them. The sea-change today is that the stage and script are dictated by the pervasive marketing of big-business corporations (pp. 3-5 and passim).

They set the stages and the props of youth activities and dreams across domains of sport, peer play and relations, identity formation, eating and drinking, creative expression, clinical care, increasingly schooling, and even sleeping.
Their ads condition children from the crib onwards and hard-push harmful addicting substances. This is why, for example, “only 1% of all ads for food are for healthy nourishment” (p. 210). Selling unhealthy desires through every window of these impressionable minds has multiplied so that almost no region of life including schools are free from the total agenda.

All the while corporately-controlled governments abdicate an ultimate obligation of modern government – enabling protection of these children young lives and humanity’s healthy future. On pervasive corporate violence products, for example, the American Medical Association reports: “Aggressive and violent thought and behaviour are systematically induced in virtually all children by corporate games” (p. 201). The occupation of childhood and youth has now reached 9 to11 hours daily for ages 8-to-18-year-olds who are glued to multi-media, orchestrated by commercial corporations (p. 207). Children are motivated by unneeded desires and adaptation to a surrounding culture which has a “panopticon marketing system” to hook into their “deep emotions” (pp. 17-27). Non-stop repetition of slogans and false images substitute for reason and life care, and the logic of ads is that you are defective without the product. In essence, addictive dependency to junk commodities of every kind drives the growth of corporate sales and disablement of children’s life capacities follows. What greater abuse of children could there be?

Bakan reports copious findings on Big Pharma buying doctors with favours, planting articles in name journals, inventing child illnesses to prescribe medications to, and drugging the young from infancy on with the unsafe substances they push (pp. 65-114). Along with the corporate invasion of children’s healthcare goes the invasion of public education (pp. 139-71, 245-56). Administrators with now corporate executive salaries for no educational function collaborate with the agenda, and mechanical testing devices closed to independent academic examination are the Trojan horse for a mass lock-step of miseducation (pp. 140-62). Bakan is aware that the whole trend of corporatization of the classroom and educational institutions “undermines the role of education in promoting critical thought and intelligent reflection” (p. 47). Indeed it wars against them in principle. For reasoning and critical research require learners to address problems independently of corporate profits and to penetrate behind market-conditioned beliefs. Big-business demands the opposite. It maximizes money returns as its first and final principle of thought and judgement, and selects against any truth or knowledge conflicting with this goal.

Corporate child abuse, in short, far surpasses all other forms of child abuse put together. But in a world where both parents are at work to survive and big money always wins elections, the life interests of children are bullied out of view. “Corporations [are] large, powerful and dominating institutions”, Bakan summarizes, “deliberately programmed to exploit and neglect others in pursuit of wealth for themselves” (p. 175).

So what is the resolution? Bakan emphasizes the pre-cautionary principle and laws against clear harms to the young. He emphasizes “values” and “teaching what is good for them and what is not” (pp. 49-50). Yet we have no principled criterion of either. They are self-evident once seen. The good for children is whatever enables life capacities to coherently grow, and the bad is whatever disables them. Corporate dominion goes the opposite direction. Thus unfitness, obesity, depression, egoic fantasies, aggressive violence, and aimlessness increase the more its profitable child abuse runs out of control. This is the heart of our disorder.


$$$Banks can give you as …$$$ you need ! January 15, 2009

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Bankers will tell you that they do not create money.  At a 10% reserve requirement, they simply lend out 90% of their deposits.  The catch is that their “deposits” include the money they have written into their customers’ accounts as loans.  That is how loans are made: numbers are simply written into the accounts of borrowers, as many reputable authorities have attested.  Here are two of them, dating back to when officials were either more aware of what was going on or more open about it:


“[W]hen a bank makes a loan, it simply adds to the borrower’s deposit account in the bank by the amount of the loan.  The money is not taken from anyone else’s deposit; it was not previously paid in to the bank by anyone.  It’s new money, created by the bank for the use of the borrower.”


        – Robert B. Anderson, Treasury Secretary under Eisenhower, in an interview

 reported in the August 31, 1959 issue of U.S. News and World Report


“Do private banks issue money today?  Yes. Although banks no longer have the right to issue bank notes, they can create money in the form of bank deposits when they lend money to businesses, or buy securities. . . . The important thing to remember is that when banks lend money they don’t necessarily take it from anyone else to lend. Thus they ‘create’ it.”


          Congressman Wright Patman, Money Facts (House Committee on Banking and Currency, 1964)                         


The process by which banks create money was detailed in a revealing booklet put out by the Chicago Federal Reserve titled Modern Money Mechanics.2  The booklet was periodically revised until 1992, when it had reached 50 pages long.  It is written in somewhat difficult prose, but here are a few relevant passages:  


“The actual process of money creation takes place primarily in banks.” [p3]


Translation: banks create money.


“In the absence of legal reserve requirements, banks can build up deposits by increasing loans and investments so long as they keep enough currency on hand to redeem whatever amounts the holders of deposits want to convert into currency.” [p3]


Translation: banks can create as much money as they want by writing loans into their borrowers’ accounts, limited only by (a) legal reserve requirements (money that must be held in reserve – traditionally about 10% of outstanding deposits and loans) or (b) the amount of money they will need to keep on hand to pay any depositors who might come for their money (also traditionally about 10%). 


“Banks may increase the balances in their reserve accounts by depositing checks and proceeds from electronic funds transfers as well as currency.” [p4]


Translation: the “reserves” that count toward the reserve requirement include currency, deposited checks, and electronic funds transfers.  (Note that the “deposits” created as loans are excluded from this list of allowable reserves: the bank cannot just keep bootstrapping loans on top of loans but must have money from external sources backing up its liabilities equal to about 10% of its loans and deposits.)


“The money-creation process takes place principally through transaction accounts [accounts that can be drawn on without restriction].”  [p2]


“ With a uniform 10 percent reserve requirement, a $1 increase in reserves would support $10 of additional transaction accounts.” [p49]


Translation: $1 deposited by a customer can be fanned into $10 in loans.


“In the real world, a bank’s lending is not normally constrained by the amount of excess reserves it has at any given moment. Rather, loans are made, or not made, depending on the bank’s credit policies and its expectations about its ability to obtain the funds necessary to pay its customers’ checks and maintain required reserves in a timely fashion.” 


Translation: In practice, banks issue loans without worrying too much about whether they have the reserves to cover them.  If they come up short, they can just borrow them:


“[Since] the individual bank does not know today precisely what its reserve position will be at the time the proceeds of today’s loans are paid out. . . . many banks turn to the money market – borrowing funds to cover deficits or lending temporary surpluses.” [p50]


“[A] bank may [also] borrow reserves temporarily from its Reserve Bank. . . .

[However], banks are discouraged from borrowing [Reserve Bank] adjustment credit too frequently or for extended time periods.” [p29]


Translation: If the bank finds at the end of the accounting period that its reserves do not come to the required 10% of its outstanding loans and deposits, it can simply borrow the reserves it needs from the money market or its Federal Reserve Bank.


A 2002 article posted on the website of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York noted that today, few banks are constrained by reserve requirements at all:


“Since the beginning of the last decade, required reserve balances have fallen dramatically. The decline stems in part from regulatory action: the Federal Reserve eliminated reserve requirements on large time deposits in 1990 and lowered the requirements on transaction accounts in 1992. But a far more important source of the decline in required reserves has been the growth of sweep accounts.  In the most common form of sweeping, funds in bank customers’ retail checking accounts are shifted overnight into savings accounts exempt from reserve requirements and then returned to customers’ checking accounts the next business day. Largely as a result of this practice, today only 30 percent of banks are bound by a reserve balance requirement.”3


Even without official reserve requirements, however, banks must keep enough money on hand to meet withdrawals or checks written against the accounts of their depositors; and that generally means about 10% of outstanding deposits and loans, as moneylenders discovered centuries ago.  But if the banks come up short, they can borrow this money from the money market or the Federal Reserve; and if the Fed comes up short, it can create new reserves.4  So why the current credit crunch?  What is limiting bank lending? 


One answer is that borrowers are simply “tapped out” and not in a position to take out as many loans as they used to.  When housing and the stock market crashed, consumers no longer had home or stock equity to borrow against.5  But to the extent that the blockage is with the banks themselves, it is not caused by the reserve requirement.  Something else is putting the squeeze on credit . . . . Stay tuned, because I’m gonna tell ya what the real problem is, and how to stop the bleeding. these things they’re talking about on local news and msnbc, cnn, well; you the ones, they’re not telling you the real truth, however, I will.  


The Big 3–Scam Artists Gone Wild! December 6, 2008

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Hello Mr. President and Vice- Hope you guys are watching what you eat and getting good physical activity in…Oh! about that pickup game:). Anyway, I want to suggest about the Big-3 auto industry; or the now scam artist gone wild. Now that we’ve solved that problem by not allowing them to continue going against what the new administration wants and what President Obama has been wanting to bring in to fruition, I applaud you. These ceo’s have played their games long enough and now the party’s over and they don’t know when to stop drinking as though they’re not drunk enough. This is the best way to get these Hybrids out there on the road and at the same time create that job market by building those hybrids and fixing the ozone and all that jazz; its falling right in to your hands Mr. President, now let the chips fall where they may. The taxpayer wants to see all of the things your platform represented during the long grueling CRUSADE:) come forward, we say let them go so that we can reconstitute our economy by building from the ground up as you said. The Bush administration has really broken this country by destroying the small business/ mainstreet economy. We can get it back right now…by not giving any more anymore TARP ( our tax dollars) to these money grubbing, lying, cheating,theiving bastards of the human race. We seriously need to stick to the plan. Wallstreet should have never been allowed to get that money, and paulson should be investigated…no strings attached,no oversight , no regulatory or trust agreement, just here you go and there it it went and we as taxpayers can’t even get a loan or any kind of help. Now, my grandmother taught me that two wrongs don’t make a right. Congress screwed up when they gave money to Wall Street, they screwed up when they gave money to AIG, they screwed up when they gave money to Bears & Stearrn and now they are getting ready to screwup again in considering to bail out the 3 automakers. If the CEOs returned the equivalent of 50% of their $16 million multi-annual compensation, they would have the money needed to do (WHAT??) to save their companies. It’s not their companies they want to save, it’s their lifestyles and those of their stockholders that they’re trying to save. This money won’t save the jobs of the auto ASSEMBLERS ( I say assemblers and not makers because the cars are not MADE in America, they are only ASSEMBLED in America), as evidenced by the recent announcement of thousands of pending layoffs.

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