Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Please Send This Letter to Your Senators in Opposition to the Bernanke Nomination

By-Webster G. Tarpley

My dear Senator,

I am writing to urge you to vote against the confirmation of Ben Bernanke for a second term as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Bernanke has failed in his responsibilities both as a banking regulator and in his administration of Federal Reserve lending. Bernanke presided over the final phase of the $1.5 quadrillion financial derivatives bubble which is the central cause of the present world economic depression. He was the principal advocate for the reckless and irresponsible policy of bailing out bankrupt money center institutions, allowing them to live on as zombie banks at astronomical taxpayer, but with no corresponding benefit whatsoever for the economic life of the broader society. Bernanke is responsible for the super-toxic alphabet soup of Federal Reserve lending facilities like the TAF, the TALF, and so forth. These betrayals of the public trust have offered 0% credit to predatory institutions including Wall Street banks, insurance companies, credit card companies, money market funds, and other financial institutions. Bernanke has thus used public resources to subsidize financial speculation in all of its most destructive forums, while doing almost nothing to provide cheap credit for production that would benefit factories, farms, mines, building construction, small business, exports, scientific research, energy production, and infrastructure building. Economic activity in all of these fields is now dying for lack of credit, which is being denied by the very institutions Bernanke is trying to save. Everything that Bernanke has done is diametrically opposed to the rational credit policy needed to fight an economic depression.

Bernanke must therefore be rejected. Instead, the Senate should support a new Fed chairman with the qualifications necessary to preside over the nationalization of this illegal, unconstitutional, and failed institution. The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 must be repealed. The future of the Fed is as a bureau of the United States Treasury responsible for providing cheap federal lending as a public utility for productive activity in the form of tangible physical commodity output, not speculation and financial services. In the future, the size of the money supply, short-term interest rates, and the approved categories of lending must be taken out of the hands of unelected and unaccountable cliques of predatory bankers, and deliberated in the full glare of publicity by the House, the Senate, and the president, as the United States Constitution actually requires. Because of Bernanke’s pattern of subservience to Wall Street interests, it is clear that he cannot be the official suited to to carry out this historic transition. Worse, reports concerning telephone calls made by Treasury Secretary Geithner in September 2008 suggest that Bernanke may also be a party to illegal operations by the Fed in regard to the bailout of AIG and its derivatives counterparties at that time. It is unthinkable that the Senate would approve Bernanke unless and until these grave suspicions have been cleared up.

Today’s newspapers suggest that Bernanke, even if he should be rejected by the Senate this week, would still attempt to stay in power as a member of the Board of Governors through 2020, exerting his power through his colleagues presently on the board. This would amount to nothing less than a bankers’ insurrection. In this eventuality, the Congress must swiftly impeach Bernanke and remove him from office immediately.

America Increasingly Looks Like A Developing Nation As 30% Of Americans Rapidly Approach Poverty, Or Are Already There

A shocking report from Brookings exposes just how massive America's poverty problem is. While substantial reductions in poverty were made during the 1990's, America's poor have been rocked by the dual economic downturns since 2000.

The result is that poverty grew at twice the rate of U.S. population growth from 2000 - 2008, and now encompasses 39.1 million Americans.

Bill Gates says U.S. recovery to take years, taxes rise

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Bill Gates, the world's richest man, said on Monday the U.S. economy could take years to recover from recession and predicted taxes will have to rise to bring the federal budget into balance.


Speaking on ABC's Good Morning America, Gates also warned against too much government intervention and urged President Barack Obama to focus policy on long-term issues such as education to combat the effects of the worst recession since the Great Depression.

"When you have a financial crisis like that, it's years of digging out," said Gates, who co-founded Microsoft Corp and remains its chairman.

"The budget's very, very out of balance. And even as the economy comes back, without changes in tax and entitlement policies, it won't get back into balance. And at some point, financial markets will look at that and it will cause problems," he added.

"Taxes are going to have to go up and entitlements are going to have to be moderated."

Gates spoke two days ahead of Obama's State of the Union speech, which is expected to focus extensively on economic issues including the need for job creation.

"We're having a slow recovery and everybody's frustrated by the pace of the recovery. But I don't think the government could change and magically make it speed up a lot," he said.

"If you try to do too much, it can distort things. The government's role is more of a long term role, investing in education."

Gates also said the United States needs its leaders to level with the American people about the long-term challenges the country faces and the sacrifices needed to overcome them.

"We need leadership for these long-term trade-offs and I'm hoping that won't cut back a few key areas like aid to poor countries. But there's going to be cutbacks," he said.

"We're seeing this at the state level right now, and so far it's not being handled very responsibly."

Record number of young Americans jobless

CHICAGO (Reuters) - The U.S. economic recession has taken a particularly heavy toll on young Americans, with a record one out five black men aged 20 to 24 neither working nor in school, according to research released on Tuesday.


Teenagers have found it significantly harder to get a job since the recession began in late 2007, with black youths and young people from low-income families faring the worst, wrote Andrew Sum of Northeastern University in Boston, a employment researcher commissioned by the Chicago Urban League and the Alternative Schools Network.

"Low-income and minority youth, who depended on part-time jobs as a significant stepping stone to future employment, have been forced out of the job market and economically marginalized," Herman Brewer of the Chicago Urban League said in a statement.

Overall, 26 percent of American teenagers aged 16 to 19 had jobs in late 2009, said the report, which was based on U.S. Census Bureau data. That figure is a record low since statistics began to be kept in 1948, the researchers said.

Employment counts the number of people with a job as a percentage of the entire work force. By contrast, the unemployment rate -- which stood at 10 percent in December in the United States -- does not include people who have grown discouraged and stopped looking for work.

Joblessness was particularly rife among high school dropouts aged 16 to 24 who were neither in school nor holding a job, the report said. Family income also had a influence on joblessness.

Only 13 percent of low-income black teenagers in Illinois held a job in 2008 compared with 48 percent of more affluent white, non-Hispanic teens.

The "disconnection rate" -- Americans aged 20 to 24 who were neither in school nor working -- jumped to 28 percent last year from 17 percent in 2007.

"If you included those in prison it would be a couple of points higher," the report's co-author Joseph McLaughlin of Northeastern.

Among the proposals the report supported were government-funded jobs programs directed at the young, additional funding to help re-enroll school dropouts, and government-funded expansions of work internships.

Hoyer: It's Good for People to Make Money Because Then They Can Pay Taxes

CNSNews.com) – House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D.-Md.) said today in his weekly press briefing that it is good that Americans are making money again because it means they can pay taxes.

Hoyer pointed to the fact that projected federal revenues have stopped declining and have stabilized as evidence that people must be making money in America.

“We also had some good news for the first time in approximately two years,” said Hoyer at his weekly press briefing. “The projection of revenues has stabilized, not decreased. That is a very good sign because it is a sign that people are in fact making money and will be in a position, because they’re making money, to pay a portion of that in revenues to the federal government.”

Faber-World Economy Is Doomed Part II

Faber-World Economy Is Doomed