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Ahead of the Fed maybe about to announce yet more intervention into the markets, don't miss this...

Ahead of the Fed maybe about to announce yet more intervention into the markets, don't miss this piece on the "MIT mafia" running monetary policy around the globe. Bonds forged in those classrooms continue to expansive dinners at Basel, where many of the policies to fight the financial crisis were debated and created.
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  • kwm3
    , contributor
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    From personal experience, I will tell you MIT grads are extremely, unusually tight and nepotistic at least at the biz school. It's not a surprise they hang together.
    12 Dec 2012, 08:24 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
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    We've gone from a nation where average Joe's looking out for themselves ran things to now a class of uber elites running things. This, from the ideology that claims to stand for the common man.
    12 Dec 2012, 11:35 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    I think y'all miss a point. The MIT grads didn't start the fire. They're trying to put it out. Goldman started the fire.
    12 Dec 2012, 11:38 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
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    This goes well beyond GS vs. MIT. Starting from TR and Wilson, an elite class and its ideology has been opposed to the basic notion that individual people should run the country through the process of running their own lives.
    12 Dec 2012, 12:04 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    The same way the church tried to put out fires for the King in the name of the "public good".

     

    http://yhoo.it/QFSeYM

     

    The "public good" argument in conjunction with gov control of everyone's life is the hallmark of fraud for the purpose of corruption. It's just like the so called populist uprising for the Fed Res, to control the "excesses" of men like Rockefeller and Morgan, but when you look at who was shaping the Fed, it was men attached to Rockefeller and Morgan. The idea that these advocates of gov stepping in with big, good gov to protect us from big, bad business is really a sham. Want this really is, is another swindle to join business and gov even more, so people like Obama and Krugman can get rich with people like Buffet, all the while making sure no one else can get rich.
    12 Dec 2012, 12:37 PM Reply Like
  • brachiosaurus
    , contributor
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    It is amusing to watch right-wingers spew out their intellectual insecurities.
    12 Dec 2012, 12:31 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
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    Not amused today. The public good is the general welfare. It's in the Constitution, in the preamble.

     

    We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

     

    See, promote the general welfare. Also insure domestic tranquility. The public good is right there, in the Constitution. And those who claim otherwise are just anti-American.
    14 Dec 2012, 02:17 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    If the gov is used to steal from one person, so it can give to another, that means one person benefits by taking the fruits of another's labor. This is the basic definition of slavery. The 13th amendment prohibits that. As such the "general welfare" does not mean using the gov as a tool to take the fruits of one person's labor and giving it to another. Look for the 13th amendment. Its right in there.
    14 Dec 2012, 03:00 PM Reply Like
  • dsr70
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    Very interesting take jh. Begs the Q, at what point is taxation slavery?
    14 Dec 2012, 03:53 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
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    That's the beauty of a consumption tax (we all pay it anyways, we just don't see it) is that participating in the tax includes more voluntary participation.

     

    Even though a military is a legitimate function of a Fed gov, even that can be stealing. If the military is bloated and being used for regulation instead of defense, or even being used against the populace, then the spending on the military is just a disguise for wealth transfer.

     

    If your consumption tax was just domestic, then people could individually "secede" to some extent by buying more things from other countries. They could also pay less tax by saving more. Its the same reason you don't want a draft. If you have to drag people into the war, there's a good chance the war is not justified. If everyone is volunteering to be in the war, then you basically have a popular vote where people are saying the war is justified (like an army pouring over the border). Taxation would be the same thing. If people easily pay the tax, they are basically voting that the expense is worth it. So if a sales tax is 1%, then people don't avoid it. If its 35%, then they vote with their money and find goods from other countries with lower costs.

     

    You let markets drive the approval for gov just like you do for ipads. After all spending is an election that happens everyday. If you have to coerce the spending, then you are using force to confiscate the benefits of another's labor. That's a pretty good sign the taxation has become slavery.
    14 Dec 2012, 04:12 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Taxes are the price you pay for living in a civilized society. We can argue about how much and what we spend them on, but to call all taxes "theft" and to claim you're a "slave" for having to pay them is just nonsense.
    14 Dec 2012, 04:52 PM Reply Like
  • marketwatcher23
    , contributor
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    At a certain point taxation becomes theft. Usually when your tax money is squandered to pay for fraud and out of control pensions etc. instead of the purposes it was intended for.
    14 Dec 2012, 05:42 PM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
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    Is there any point where taxes are theft Dana? 60%, 80%, 99%? Give me a number.
    14 Dec 2012, 06:18 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
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    Uh, no. Taxation is taxation, and we have less taxation in this country than any other civilized nation. Increasingly, we get less for it, too, thanks to politicians, and their acolytes, who have contempt for government and thus deliberately produce contemptible government. Halliburton.
    14 Dec 2012, 08:14 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    There is no number. The top tax rate was 92% under Eisenhower. It is what is necessary, whatever it is. You may agitate against it, you may complain about how it's spent, but when you call it "theft" you deliberately attack the very foundations of representative government.

     

    You may pay it, or you may leave. Those are your choices. You may pay it, or lose the protections of the government that collects it. Those are your choices. When government becomes tyrannical, the moral choice is indeed to leave. But a democratic government, a republican form of government, is designed to not become a tyranny, and we even stepped back from the brink when GW Bush tried to lead us in that direction.

     

    So, no.If you don't like paying for the government you have, go find one that is more to your liking.
    14 Dec 2012, 08:17 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
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    So you think gov can never be an instrument of theft?
    17 Dec 2012, 08:48 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Stupid question. People in government steal all the time. But government, in a democratic system, is not "them." It's "us." If you don't understand that, I'm sorry but you're not very American.

     

    If is our duty as citizens to be on the lookout for crime wherever it may occur, whether in government or in business. As Springsteen said, this ain't no free ride.
    17 Dec 2012, 09:20 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    So you would never complain about laws that make slavery legal?
    17 Dec 2012, 11:07 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
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    @dana, you're using the logic that it's not possible to oppose govt. in a democracy without being unpatriotic. That's chilling, quite honestly.

     

    > It is what is necessary, whatever it is. You may agitate against it,
    > you may complain about how it's spent, but when you call it
    > "theft" you deliberately attack the very foundations of
    > representative government

     

    If govt. simply was doing roads and such, then it would be what it is, as the cost of doing business. But taxation today is openly discussed as an instrument to change the order of society, not just to pave roads. That's what makes it theft.
    17 Dec 2012, 12:27 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    You are free to oppose this government, or any democratic government, in a democratic way. Insofar as making war against this government is concerned, we had that discussion in the 1860s, and it is closed.

     

    We're all entitled to our opinions, and we are obligated in many ways to support those opinions through the political process, which is open to all.

     

    Taking arms against this government is treason, and those who commit treason are traitors. Sorry if you don't like that. But there it is.
    17 Dec 2012, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
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    Calling taxation theft is advocating war?

     

    Just so your position is clear, no level of taxation can be theft, as long as such is enacted democratically. So if 51% vote to take money from those they oppose, that's OK. Because that is what we have now.

     

    Some of us aren't blind to the reality of what our system has become. There's a famous Jefferson quote that comes to mind.
    17 Dec 2012, 02:29 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    We have the lowest rate of taxation of any industrial country. I don't know if you know that. I know the Jefferson quote you're thinking of, and yes, you're crying treason.

     

    Act on your words, and you'll deserve what happens to you.
    17 Dec 2012, 03:37 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
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    "We have the lowest rate of taxation of any industrial country."

     

    Expropriation taxes aren't what really funds our gov. As such, the real level of taxation is what the gov consumes or induces to be consumed that our level of technology doesn't justify. To really examine levels of taxation, then you need to compare how different govs lower the standard of living for their general populaces to determine who is taxed the most.

     

    Tyrants always want you to believe that slavish devotion to gov is the highest civic calling. Voltaire said that once you convince people of absurdity, you can commit all sorts of atrocities against them.
    17 Dec 2012, 03:54 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    Slavery is a lack of freedom to select association. The slaves wanted to seceed from their owners, because the owners used the lack of freedom to associate to impose a 100% income tax rate on the slaves. When the slave states attempted to no longer associate with the Northern states, the Northern states demonstrated with force that the states that wanted to seceed also did not have the freedom of association.
    18 Dec 2012, 01:57 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
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    "But, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce [the people] under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security"

     

    T Jefferson
    18 Dec 2012, 01:57 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
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    Wrong quote Dana. This:

     

    "I think myself that we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious."

     

    -Jefferson
    18 Dec 2012, 02:48 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Tyrants? Slavery? Really? Really.

     

    I stayed loyal to this nation through the worst of what GW Bush and company dished out. You will salute our President and like it.

     

    Or you can leave. And lose the protection of our laws, and our military.
    18 Dec 2012, 10:15 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Easy to pull out something like that from the early 19th century, when Jefferson was running against Adams. It's called political rhetoric.
    18 Dec 2012, 10:16 AM Reply Like
  • marketwatcher23
    , contributor
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    Hey Dana can you name another country that continues to tax you for the rest of your life once you leave the country for good? One other country. Thanks.

     

    You never lose the "protection" of our laws. Even after you leave.
    18 Dec 2012, 10:20 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Just renounce your citizenship and you won't be taxed, forevermore. You'll lose the protection of our laws, however.
    18 Dec 2012, 10:54 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    "I stayed loyal to this nation through the worst of what GW Bush"

     

    You never questioned or complained about Bush?
    18 Dec 2012, 11:34 AM Reply Like
  • Destin
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    Exactly jhooper. The "America, love it or leave it" philosophy gets gussied up and repackaged by both sides every time they get their guys put back in charge, while the losers suddenly re-embrace the patriotism of dissent. It never fails. I wonder what Dana thought of the "oppose us and you'll get what you deserve" philosophy when GWB and the Republicans were in charge of all three branches.
    18 Dec 2012, 12:12 PM Reply Like
  • marketwatcher23
    , contributor
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    People still falling for the red team blue team. Amazing.
    18 Dec 2012, 01:32 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    It sucked. But I stayed. You do the same. You salute this President as I had to salute yours, and we'll get along fine.
    18 Dec 2012, 01:51 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    Its not about right or left, red or blue, its about coercive vs noncoercive.
    18 Dec 2012, 03:39 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    No. It's about obeying the law. You want rights but disclaim responsibilities.
    18 Dec 2012, 04:39 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    Who says Bush was my President?

     

    Never-the-less, you still complained, right?

     

    I will complain and fight against any politician that misuses the gov's coercive power, and any missuse of gov's coercive power is theft. That is injustice and it needs to be opposed. Language that says "shut-up and take it", like a good little gov drone, presumes that I am here to serve gov and not the other way around.

     

    To say that gov can never be used as an instrument of theft, ignores the lessons from thousands of years of history. So whether you higher a thug to do your stealing or a dressed up politician, the result is the same, whether it was legislated or not.

     

    Civilization is measured by how much "power" is brought under the rule of law, not by how much "people" are brought under the rule of those with power.
    18 Dec 2012, 06:08 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    If the law says return the fugitive slave, do you return the slave?
    18 Dec 2012, 06:10 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Bush was everyone's President. But I feel certain you supported him. Either way, we're all responsible for what he left behind.

     

    I didn't say a gun couldn't be used badly. It's a tool, and harm is its intent. But you're not safer having one -- you're in more danger. When someone robs with a gun, they've got the drop on you, and if you pull one out odds are you're dead.

     

    This "guns make us safer" is like global warming denialism. Just as wrong, just as dangerous.

     

    Your aphorism is also a nonsense, since it's not what you believe to be true. You think guns make you safe. They don't.
    18 Dec 2012, 07:41 PM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    Stupid, stupid, stupid. We had a war over that question, and the side that pushed the fugitive slave law and Dred Scott decision tried to leave the union. They lost. I think that settles the question.
    18 Dec 2012, 07:43 PM Reply Like
  • marketwatcher23
    , contributor
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    I have a gun and a German shephard. If someone tries to invade my home I feel pretty good they won't have the drop on me and I will absolutely have the advantage. You can be a victim. The law allows me that ability. So let's just obey the laws right?
    18 Dec 2012, 08:18 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    But you said we shouldn't fight over the laws a gov passes. So we were wrong to fight over slavery?
    18 Dec 2012, 09:25 PM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
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    hoop, you are correct. The military's UCMJ requires the disobeying of an unlawful order. At one time we developed common citizens who held not only an inherent right to but a duty to disobey unlawful rules, orders, and laws in general. Consent of the govern means more than merely voting.

     

    The fact that what I just typed is controversial and seemingly anarchic shows how much the character of the relationship between govt. and citizen has become. We now apparently hold dear obedience to govt. as the highest standard.

     

    @Dana: "When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty. " -Jefferson

     

    Dana can you honestly say the govt. even remotely fears the citizen any more? I think you're the revolutionary, not me. As in you're a counterrevolutionary to our original revolution.
    18 Dec 2012, 10:17 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5203) | Send Message
     
    dsr70

     

    It comes down to education. Gov schools have an incentive to teach compliance. As such, the groundwork is laid for a peasant class that will be compliant and obedient. The best kind of slave is one who doesn't realize he is a slave, and can be tricked into volunteering for slavery.

     

    A slave has a 100% income tax rate and a 99% regulation rate. This is made possible by the introduction of coercion that eliminates the freedom to associate. Also, consider that a slave had a guaranteed job, guaranteed room and board, guaranteed healthcare, and guaranteed family planning. Slaves also were subject to gun control and speech police. They were taught that rebellion was bad (a sign of disloyalty), and would be met with severe penalties. Their masters did it all based on the premise that slaves were irrational, and as such would not act in there own best interest. As such, someone with superior intellect was needed to take care of them.

     

    Any of this sound familiar?
    19 Dec 2012, 07:55 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
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    The Jefferson quote applies to elections, not insurrection.
    19 Dec 2012, 08:11 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
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    And what if the people vote for an insurrection?
    19 Dec 2012, 08:44 AM Reply Like
  • DigDeep
    , contributor
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    Dana; The "disclaiming of responsibilities" are the decision makers (Sumners & Rubin) that are still in positions of power from the miss-guided policy decisions of the late 90's.

     

    "Obeying" the policy decisions of over leverage and poor risk management, initiated pre GWB - and carried through with Greenspans misdirected influence - got us where?

     

    Your memory must stop at GWB's inaugural address.
    19 Dec 2012, 08:47 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
    Comments (5674) | Send Message
     
    You have the chance do to that with every insurrection. That's what Jefferson was talking about. The democratic process gives us an opportunity to revolt regularly, to change our course radically if we wish. The last several elections should have proven that.

     

    But, no. You can't vote to leave. You either walk away from the protection of this government, or you obey its laws. There is no other legitimate choice. And if you don't like that, if you act on the belief you can't accept that, we call you a criminal and deal with you accordingly.
    19 Dec 2012, 09:22 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
    Comments (5674) | Send Message
     
    I'm not a member of any organized political party, as Will Rogers said. I'm a Democrat.

     

    But I'm also an American, and as such responsible to obey the law -- even when I disagree with it -- or take the consequences. And I'm responsible for the decisions my government makes, even if I may hate them. I hated the Iraq war, and I hate Obama's drone strikes, but these are still Presidents with full authority to act as they did, so you salute and move on. Maybe you vote against them, but you don't plot insurrection, or claim you can. Except insofar as insurrection means contributing to, and working on behalf of, candidates dedicated to overturning those decisions you abhor.
    19 Dec 2012, 09:25 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5203) | Send Message
     
    "and as such responsible to obey the law -- even when I disagree with it"

     

    This is peasant thinking. Gov is just a product like anything else. It is not a god or a some sacrosanct master. It can be corrupted, and its tendency is to be corrupted. The basis of gov is force. Force has two uses. It can steal or it can be used as a defense against stealing. Nature's markets will always correct for productivity, and the correction against a gov's misuse of force is private force.

     

    Thus, even if you believe you should be a slave to gov no matter what it does, nature doesn't hold this belief. People will rise up against gov's waste of human capital, and at some point they will stop wars that are only good for politicians and their supporters or regulations that are only good for politicians and their supporters.

     

    So to say you have no right to insurrection when a gov has become an instrument of corruption assumes that people should be natural slaves. Nature does not allow this because a slave society cannot survive. This is why there are no socialist or communist countries. Every society has to have some capitalism for them to surive. Every society has to have some form of insurrection as a balance against unmitigated gov force.

     

    You can believe that people don't have a right to defend themselves, and you can believe that you should be a slave, but nature won't permit that indefinitely. What you want is a free market, and a free market is a market free from coercion, both public and private. Then your market correction is just based on prices, not bloodshed in an insurrection, and the best way to guarantee that you will have bloodshed is to tell people they have no right to defend themselves. When people begin to believe that, then gov force will become corrupted, oppression will grow, and nature's reminder that only productivity will be allowed will be invoked, and the market correction of bloodshed becomes guaranteed, high moral rhetoric to the contrary not withstanding.

     

    As such, it is better to design a system with checks and balances, to keep power contained, and thus utilize nature's design that brings peace and prosperity. Rhetoric won't replace reality.
    19 Dec 2012, 10:04 AM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5203) | Send Message
     
    "or you obey its laws"

     

    Then why was a war fought to end the laws that fought slavery?

     

    What if several states voted to leave?
    19 Dec 2012, 10:36 AM Reply Like
  • Dana Blankenhorn
    , contributor
    Comments (5674) | Send Message
     
    They did. So the government overcame them.

     

    We're all peasants. That's a feature, Mr. Teahadist -- not a bug.
    19 Dec 2012, 12:22 PM Reply Like
  • jhooper
    , contributor
    Comments (5203) | Send Message
     
    "You either walk away from the protection of this government,"

     

    That's the point. You can't walk away. People can't vote to leave.

     

    Why do you have to chain a slave? Why were there fugitive slave laws? The reason is to take away the right to associate.

     

    "We're all peasants. That's a feature, Mr. Teahadist -- not a bug."

     

    Now the truth comes out. Not everyone is a peasant. Those that control the force are the aristocrats, the slave owners. Now we see that controlling people is not for their own good, but for the good of those that wish to do the controlling.

     

    Here we have the admission of those that want to steal from their fellow citizens that slavery and peasantry is what they are all about. This is why they are never upset when it is pointed out and proven that they don't believe in freedom, because they don't. They want oppression and violence. Its just that they want to be the oppressors and the ones committing the violence.

     

    "Mr. Teahadist "

     

    Here is the demagogic approach. To distract from the logic that illustrates the tyranny, the attempt is now made to attack the bringer of enlightenment. All violaters of property do this. The thief gets angry when the victim resists. This is why the people must retain the right to protect themselves, and why insurrection is pratically guaranteed for the future of human beings.

     

    Ultimately free markets would lower the cost of production to a point where no stealing would be necessary, but we are clearly not there yet as evidenced by the comments above.
    19 Dec 2012, 01:44 PM Reply Like
  • marketwatcher23
    , contributor
    Comments (935) | Send Message
     
    jhooper stop asking questions like that and go to the mall and buy something. You are going to make our heads hurt.
    18 Dec 2012, 09:26 PM Reply Like
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