This is a strange story. We were having a chat after the project meeting finished and somehow the subject of European Central Bank (ECB) came up. I don’t remember why or how but the question was raised: who controls the ECB? Well, I knew that ECB was a company but I did not know details. So I had to have a look. The results are … well, this could have been expected.
Okay, so ECB is a bank, a commercial entity with all European Central Banks as shareholders. No surprises there. So whoever controls the Central Banks of the EU countries – controls the ECB. Now the next question is, of course, who controls the Central Banks?
I did not check them all but I suspect they are all organized the same way: the government (I could not find out how) is the shareholder and owner of the Central Bank. It seems that even where the Central Banks were private, they were nationalized some time ago. So they are all publicly owned. But there is a catch.
You see, the Central Banks have a note on their pages and in the documents that effectively says: “we are not controlled by the government”. I cannot imagine why, but all right, so the Central Banks are not controlled by the government, that’s just the way they are set up. So the owners actually do not control the banks. Who controls them then?
In this case, since there is no other obvious control mechanism, the Board of Directors and, in the first place, the Governor, will be controlling the Central Bank. Again, it seems that all banks in Europe are set up identically. So their management actually controls the Central Banks and therefore controls the ECB. A financial empire, no less. Very well. Who are the management and can we see any clear affiliations there?
And that’s where it got messy. Some countries’ Central Banks do not disclose any information about the governors – those are double suspicious. But all of the others show affiliation with U.S. one way or another. Here is the list of governors and those of their past affiliations that could be easily found.
- ECB: Mario Draghi, President – Goldman Sachs, World Bank
- Bank of England: Mark Carney, Governor – Goldman Sachs
- Bank of France: Christian Noyer, Governor – IMF, World Bank
- Deutsche Bundesbank: Jens Weidmann, President – IMF
- Bank of Greece: Yannis Stournaras, Governor – IMF
- De Nederlandsche Bank: Klaas
US president spoke of the “extraordinary” Russia’s military power, extent of Russia’s border with Ukraine and even mentioned Russian history. Propaganda myth of a massive Russian intervention in Ukraine is now used against its authors at full steam: you can not do something in Ukraine without taking into account the reaction of the Kremlin. Therefore, the U.S. administration will do nothing there – and that’s exactly what Merkel wants. I do not mean that Russia did not intervene; the whole myth was based on hiding the American control of Ukraine and silencing the fact that Russia never took initiative but only ever reacted, and rather sluggishly at that.
Now the Ukrainian issue will be resolved (or not resolved) through diplomacy, and the White House even invented a variant solution: heads of Donetsk and Lugansk will be elected in accordance with the Ukrainian (what’s the difference, why not Chinese?) constitution – and Kiev would be forced to stop the fight and carry on with the negotiations. Obama “has not yet decided” about weapons shipments to Ukraine – and “will not decide” before the election of the new president. In fact everything will be solved by Putin, whom Merkel persuaded in the Kremlin. He, however, did not put up a fight: if America will mind their own business, and if it you are so good to ask, then so be it.
Angela Merkel looked completely different than during previous visits. If before she felt a bit alien to this celebration of life, and a bit awkward compared to the elegant Michelle Obama, not to mention the women of French presidents, by now she has acquired the character stiffness of the “Iron Lady” Thatcher, perhaps a tad more clear and discreet.
Obama talked about the usual: climate and all the good against the bad things, but in the end he even began to recover. It must have cost him a lot of effort, but he managed. In reality, the talks centered around two issues. Only one of them was on the official agenda, and journalists (unsuccessfully) tried to clarify the details.
The first item really concerned Ukraine. Angela Merkel has brought to the attention of her American counterpart the “Ukrainian dossier” prepared by BND and explained: Germany did not intervene in the American game in Iraq, Libya and Syria; nobody cares… -->continue reading →
A survey conducted in May 1945 on the whole French territory now released (confirming a survey in September 1944 with Parisians) showed that interviewees appear well aware of the power relations and the role of allies in the war, despite the censorship and the difficulty to access reliable information under enemy’s occupation.
A clear majority (57%) believed that the USSR is the nation that has contributed most to the defeat of Germany while the United States and England will gather respectively 20% and 12%.
But what is truly astonishing is that this vision of public opinion was reversed very dramatically with time, as shown by two surveys conducted in 1994 and 2004. In 2004, 58% of the population were convinced that USA played the biggest role in the Second World War and only 20% were aware of the leading role of USSR in defeating the Nazi.
This is a very clear example of how the propaganda adjusted the whole nation’s perception of history, the evaluation of the fundamental contribution to the allied victory in the World War II.
Source: http://www.les-crises.fr/la-fabrique-du-cretin-defaite-nazis/… -->continue reading →
Quite often, the data on repressions are used to demonstrate that a country is not “sufficiently democratic”. Here is some rather interesting data on the prison population in different countries from the International Centre for Prison Studies.
Let’s start with Russia, as it is now again the new enemy #1 of the “democratic world” as announced by the leaders of USA. In Russia, the number of prisoners equals to 467 people per 100,000 of national population. Is that a lot or not?
Let’s compare with other well-known totalitarian regimes. Their neighbor – Belarus with their totalitarian leader Lukashenko sports 335 people per 100,000 of population in jails. Uhm, okay, so Belarus is not as totalitarian as we thought. But certainly Iran would qualify as a totalitarian state, where people are thrown into jail for minimal brushes with the Muslim laws, right? Iran has 283 people per 100,000 of population in jails. No, this cannot be right. China! China is the totalitarian state of the century! China’s oppression of the “small man” is iconic and this is confirmed by their prison rate of … 124 people per 100,000 of national population. Strange, isn’t it?
Okay. Let’s get to the democratic side then. How are the things in the leader of the world democracy – United States? United States welcomes you to democracy with a prison rate of 707 detainees per 100,000 of national population. Oops. USA has 5% of the world population and 25% of the world incarcerated population.
Does this mean that to reach proper enlightened democracy Russia has to put double the number of people into jails and China would have to get five times as fast at locking people up?
… -->continue reading →
Here I am, peacefully reading this article in BusinessWeek about the recent shooting at Charlie Hebdo in Paris where criminals shot several people to death. The article is interesting as it talks about the origins of violence towards those who dare to create dissenting satire and evoke laughter at the corruption of powerful and sacred.
Suddenly, halfway through the article it turns into an unfounded rhetoric about the “iron fist of Putin” in Russia and false interpretations of the quasi-political dissent in Soviet Union in the last century. What gives?
BusinessWeek is hardly an independent magazine but it was not yellow press either, as far as I remember. Amazing to see how quickly most media joined the Cold War on Russia with all the anti-Russian hysteria building up now. I cannot name any mainstream Western or U.S. magazines or newspapers that would write anything close to the truth about Russia anymore.… -->continue reading →
Reprint from: The Outlook for the New Year by Paul Craig Roberts
Washington has shaped 2015 to be a year of conflict. The conflict could be intense.
Washington is the cause of the conflict, which has been brewing for some time. Russia was too weak to do anything about it when the Clinton regime pushed NATO to Russia’s borders and illegally attacked Yugoslavia, breaking the country into small easily controlled pieces. Russia was also too weak to do anything about it when the George W. Bush regime withdrew from the ABM treaty and undertook to locate anti-ballistic missile bases on Russia’s borders. Washington lied to Moscow that the purpose of the ABM bases is to protect Europe from non-existent Iranian nuclear ICBMs. However, Moscow understood that the purpose of the ABM bases was to degrade Russia’s nuclear deterrent, thereby enhancing Washington’s ability to coerce Russia into agreements that compromise Russian sovereignty.
By summer 2008 Russian power had returned. On Washington’s orders, the US and Israeli trained and equipped Georgian army attacked the breakaway republic of South Ossetia during the early hours of August 8, killing Russian peacekeepers and civilian population. Units of the Russian military instantly responded and within a few hours the American trained and equipped Georgian army was routed and defeated. Georgia was in Russia’s hands again, where the province had resided during the 19th and 20th centuries.
Putin should have hung Mikheil Saakashvili, the American puppet installed as president of Georgia by the Washington-instigated “Rose Revolution”, and reincorporated Georgia into the Russian Federation. Instead, in a strategic error, Russia withdrew its forces, leaving Washington’s puppet regime in place to cause future trouble for Russia.
Washington is pushing hard to incorporate Georgia into NATO, thus adding more US military bases on Russia’s border. However, at the time, Moscow thought Europe to be more independent of Washington than it is and relied on good relations with Europe to keep American bases out of Georgia.
Today the Russian government no longer has any illusion that Europe is capable of an independent foreign policy. Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated publicly that Russia has learned that diplomacy with Europe is pointless, because European … -->continue reading →
The Economic Populist has published an interesting overview of wages statistic in USA. It turns out that nearly a third of people working are extremely poor. These are not jobless but people who actually have jobs. Still, one third of working people receive wages before taxes below $15,000 a year and nearly 15% of workers – below $5,000 a year. Most Americans, 52.4%, make less than $30,000 a year yet those very Americans only have 15.3% of the total country income from wages.
The chasm between the rich and poor is growing yearly. An astronomical 23.1 million wage earners made less than $5,000 per year in 2013. Those making less than $5000 a year are only getting 0.7% of the total compensation pie as a group. The top wage bracket – over $50 million – has 110 people in it or 0.000064% of wage earners. This top wage bracket received 0,18% of the total net compensation. And this inequality of wages keeps increasing.
The Economic Populist concludes that “The bottom line here is the rich are getting richer and most of America continues to get squeezed even though in 2013 wages improved. As a trend we can see since 1990 just a never ending attack on regular wage earners in this country. The bounce back in 2013 isn’t enough to make up for 30 years of a spiral down.”… -->continue reading →
Authorities of the Donetsk People’s Republic are considering the termination of cooperation with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in investigating the crash of the Malaysian Boeing, RIA Novosti reported. According to representatives of the Republic, the OSCE surreptitiously helped Ukrainian Army to stage an offensive on the militia.
“With the help of the OSCE and under the pretext of access to the crash site Ukrainian troops surrounded a small group of Donetsk militia that was guarding the crash site in agreement with the OSCE. Now Ukrainian troops are methodically killing those guardsmen. It is a violation of all agreements. They were trapped with the help of international mediators. And they willingly performed this role,” – said a source in the government.
He added that a similar incident occurred when the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko declared a truce. According to him, this was done only in order to regroup and prepare Ukrainian troops for further offensive.
According to officials of the Donetsk Republic, the authorities intend to cease cooperation with the OSCE and involve representatives of SCO and the Asia-Pacific zone in the crash investigation.
“The OSCE, as it turned out, is a structure completely controlled by the United States. And with the Americans no negotiation is possible. They continually violate their obligations,” – he said. OSCE cannot be trusted anymore to remain impartial and uninvolved.… -->continue reading →
Here is a couple of opinions on the political situation in Ukraine.
Da Dzi wrote: “I could talk to one fairly well-known politician from Israel. Most important thing taken out of the conversation – political circles in Israel are all sure 99.99% that the Malaysian Boeing was “ordered” by Kolomoysky. Virtually no one expresses any doubts. And they are all extremely angry because of that. They say, he “lost his borders” – to shoot down civilian planes or form punitive military battalions played out in Bandera style – Kolomoysky damages the image of Jews worldwide. Well, except for American Jews – they love such provocations.”
“The correspondent was sure that the rhetoric of the U.S. will change within the week. Obama cannot prove that the destruction of the Boeing involved Novorossia or Russia but the guilty party must be named. Nominations to the role of the guilty party are exactly two: Poroshenko and Kolomoysky. But to call Poroshenko the culprit is to kill Ukraine politically in the international arena. That would result in a strange situation that the U.S. supports a President who is a terrorist. So there is actually only a single candidate. Kolomoysky played a baron in the Ukrainian feud farce. And now it’s time for him to go.”
Mikle proposes a different scenario where U.S. will not give up Kolomoysky. They could rather push for the destruction of the ship and scapegoating Poroshenko. They could start a war within the Junta and ascertain that Poroshenko is thrown over. Then they would wait and see if there is any progress with the new “king”. And if not – they can still raise a cry of overthrowing the legitimately elected President and announce the refusal to deal with a terrorist. Which, oh horror of horrors, even knocked down an airplane.
If it succeeds, U.S. will come out all dressed in white from their support of the failed regime while Kolomoysky may continue to destroy Ukraine any way he likes – he could even get weapons, money supply and mercenaries through third countries. Classics of the genre.
So we have now two ways the situation may deteriorate in Ukraine, according to people who think. Interestingly, nobody seems to think anymore that the situation may improve at all. Also, I notice that the name of Kolomoysky is appearing more and… -->continue reading →