Soros Conspiracy Theory dominates Front Page of the Telegraph

The Telegraph is going big on the story that George Soros is against Brexit. Theresa May’s former Chief of Staff, Nick Timothy, gets a byline for this “news story”.

With Osborne running the Remain supporting Standard and Timothy operating out of the Brexit-backing Telegraph it is no wonder there has been an erosion of standards in public life.

Rupert Murdoch has displayed outsized influence over both New Labour and Cameron and now it is clear that the Barclay Brothers and Mr Lebedev are pushing their own conflicting agendas.

Politicians such as Timothy and Osborne have no loyalty to the truth and as such, have no place in the media except as conservative columnists or more appropriately as registered corporate lobbyists.

There is nothing in itself wrong with the content of the article. It’s the tone that is worrying. By attacking Soros for being a foreign financier, the Telegraph are going big on the Big Money, Big Media, Big Influence angle which just so happens to tick every anti-semitic trope going.

It is worrying that just a few rich influential people get to decide how and when to overturn Brexit and indeed the UK government but following in the steps of Donald Trump and Hungary’s Populist leader Victor Orban is not a good look.

Soros made a lot of money out of Britain’s inability to converge the pound with the German Deutsch Mark in 1992. This meant that Britain stayed in what became the European Union but never joined the Eurozone which would have meant adopting the Euro.

In a sense Britain has a lot to thank Mr Soros for as without this seismic event, Britain might have turned into Greece already.

However Soros did buy HMRC’s buildings off the government for very little money and, of course, has stashed all the money offshore.

It would probably be more accurate to say that Soros got the UK to pay him handsomely to take the buildings. In this sense I wouldn’t say that he is a particularly nice man. But this is the model of capitalism that the Telegraph has always championed so it irks to see them turn against it just because they feeling like serving up some Brexit-inspired retribution.

They say you should never argue with a man who buys his ink by the gallon.

In the case of today’s media wars, for all their influence, I think the Tory movers and shakers will end up having to capitulate to the desires of big capital. That means staying friends with people like Soros and the big companies. Unless a new system rises up anytime soon, I can’t see how UK can simply exclude itself from the international financial system.

Yes much of it is corrupt but Britain has excelled at making money out of that corruption. Being in the EU helps.

Blog in Progress: I’m Wet Dreaming of a Nazi Family Xmas — Rees Mogg’s JFK Moment as Alt-Right Stooge plays Oswald, Mosley, & Umbrella Man

“So you self-identify as a conspiracy theorist?” asked the Masters student disparagingly at a protest in 2015.

I was 37 at the time.

I thought I knew what I was doing. But quite obviously, I was mad.

What was I doing there, outside the German Embassy, near Mayfair, aged 37, surrounded by students, taking photographs of a protest about a protest — a Meta-Protest?

I obviously thought it was something worth covering at the time.

The detention of a London-based Italian national, Fede, in Frankfurt for having having hurled rocks at the Police during a protest about the European Central Bank.

I had heard about it on Facebook. A younger better connected activist had posted something and I thought I’d tag along. It was a weekday morning. Who else could possibly be there? I was bound to get some exclusive shots and help spread the word. It was God’s work. Obviously.

I’d also just launched the blog — londonconversation.com — time to act like a reporter.

Take photos and get coverage.

So I was only in it for the retweets.

The Society of the Spectacle, indeed.

Attention hacking. My convoluted attempt to monetise the protest. The misery of others. Hmm.

I had become the thing I despised, and I had barely started. The thing was to get coverage, not to be niche. But the human brain is wired such that it needs a constant feed of stories. What kind of a person dispassionately puts out stories one after the other without lingering on any of them for long enough to see the results?

A superficial person?

Someone who specialises in manufacturing moments for maximum drama.

The Magic Bullet

The magic bullet at the grassy knoll in Dallas on the morning on November 22nd 1963 is, of course,  a favourite.

I first heard about it when my mum took me to watch JFK at the cinema. Gary Oldman played Oswald and he was famously photoshopped to look like he was holding a rifle. The shadow gave the game away.

Then there’s Umbrella man. I never heard about him until 2014. I was at a talk on the Psychology of Conspiracy Theory. The presenter said it was his favourite. He said most conspiracy theorists believe conflicting theories. In my case I recognised that was true. It’s a bad habit. But what can you do when you don’t want to believe the official version?

Of course your mind will wander off to the fringes, the margins. Where else can the truth lie?

For me, these things never go away.

They cast a shadow over all events.

Flickering through phones and tv screens.

Nothing is real.

For what is possible in one place at one time is surely also potentially possible in and during another.

It may well have been with these thoughts in mind that I start to think differently about the man in the Nazi uniform that started to appear in our telephone screens early on Monday morning.

 

 

Murdoch’s Sun and Times published photos of Paul Townsley, who carried out an unprovoked on an unarmed woman at a Jacob Rees Mogg talk in Bristol, dressed up as a Nazi in front of children at a family Christmas party.

Plus ça Change, Plus C’est La Même Chose

Flagrant Contempt of Parliament by Crony Capitalist Sir Howard Davies of RBS

Do we live in a truly decadent age?

Can anyone get away with anything?

These are questions I feel compelled to ask after watching just a few minutes of Howard Davies and Ross McEwan, of the taxpayer-owned Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), giving evidence before last Tuesday’s Parliamentary Treasury Select Committee.

To not, as a society, vehemently question the goings on at these proceedings implies a collective post traumatic stress disorder following the 2008 crash that has robbed us of the dignity and empathy that we need to recover.

But recover we must. Current tolerance levels for corruption and injustice remain incredibly high and we all too often simply carry on.

Dialectic-as-a-service

 

Rushdie used to quote Kundera by saying that man’s struggle against the system was like the persistence of memory when trying to forget.

What happens when we can’t forget?

Madness is rare in individuals – but in groups, parties, nations, and ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

What happens when powerful individuals are given platforms to defend corporate criminality while the rightful anger and people’s sense of injustice is segmented and siloed off to the point of non-existence, like the risk on a series of high risk collateralised debt obligations (CDOs) repackaged as Triple A reliable investments during good times only to re-emerge as toxic during the bad.

The risk and the anger never go away. They just get stored up for a later date. “They that sow the wind, shall reap the whirlwind”.  Some will wonder why no-one heeded the warnings. How the journalists are to blame just as much as the government and the bankers.

Maybe the warning signs are hidden in the business pages. As Harvey Cox says in The Market as God, the concepts in the business pages are theological. Redemption and Retribution. People getting away with stuff and others getting punished. Why does God permit it?  Nowadays we have PR people, Regulators, Central Banks, Blacklisted Whistleblowers and a growing number of unhappy customers.

If you kick off about this stuff, people ridicule you for making a big deal out of nothing, for being an anti-business Social Justice Warrior that knows nothing about the way of the world.

If the facts of life really are conservative then why make a fuss about anything?

Anyway, here’s that master class in how to carry out state-sanctioned cannibalistic, rampant Crony Capitalism in broad daylight — and get away with it.

Lots of innocent Small Business Owners have been asset stripped of their families, marriages, businesses and homes by the RBS Global Restructuring Group (GRG), and all many of them will get is this:

It is hard to see which features of Crony Capitalism don’t apply here:

Crony capitalism is an economy in which businesses thrive not as a result of risk taken for them, but rather as a return on money amassed through a nexus between a business class and the political class. This is done using state power to crush genuine competition in handing out permits, government grants, special tax breaks, or other forms of state intervention[1][2]over resources where the state exercises monopolist control over public goods, for example, mining concessions for primary commodities or contracts for public works. Money is then made not merely by making a profit in the market, but by profiteering by “rent seeking” using this monopoly or oligopoly. Entrepreneurship and innovative practices, which seek to reward risk are stifled, since the value-add is little by crony businesses as hardly anything of significant value is created by them, with transactions taking the form of “trading”. Crony capitalism spills over into the government, the politics and the media,[3] when this nexus distorts the economy and affects society to an extent it corrupts public-serving economic, political and social ideals.

The term “crony capitalism” made a significant impact in the public as an explanation of the Asian financial crisis.[4] It is also used to describe governmental decisions favoring “cronies” of governmental officials. In this context, the term is often used comparatively with corporate welfare, a technical term often used to assess government bailouts and favoritistic monetary policy, as opposed to the economic theory, described by “crony capitalism”. The extent of difference between these terms is whether a government action can be said to benefit the individuals rather than the industry.

Off with their heads. No questions asked.

But for some reason, the British sense of fair play perhaps, they remain.

But how long can this carry on?

Here are the rules on lying to Select Committees from a Parliament Document: 

So none of what is said in a select committee hearing can be relied upon in civil or criminal proceedings against anyone but attempting to mislead is Contempt of Parliament.

I’m still waiting for the full transcript of Davies and McEwan’s hearing to go up. I feel the people at Parliament are dragging their feet.

I’m realising that Howard Davies’s chiaroscuro can be found near pretty much every financial crime scene going. With previous like you wouldn’t believe.

McKinsey, Treasury, Seconded Special Adviser to Nigel Lawson when he was Thatcher’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, Bank of England, Head of the Audit Commission which is now defunct but was instrumental in overseeing Thatcher’s Privatisation and Denationalisation agenda including Fraud Investigation, the London School of Economics from where he had to resign because of his closeness to Colonel Gaddafi, and now he’s the Chair of the Fraud Machine that is the 71% taxpayer owned Royal Bank of Scotland.

Here he is on PFI. 

For more on how banks treat their customers, their staff, and the whistleblowers that speak out, follow Real Media, financial adviser Stephen Middleton, Bank Confidential,Kam Sandhu, Joel Benjamin, Ian Fraser, and Whistleblowers Mark Wright & Nicholas Wilson:

Theresa May winds up China to please Trump — what about Hinkley & HSBC?

The FT says Theresa May won’t endorse the Chinese Belt and Road initiative.

The BBC:

Here’s HSBC’s website

HSBC has been named Best Overall International Bank for Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in the inaugural Asiamoney New Silk Road Finance Awards, reflecting the Bank’s commitment to being the leading financial partner to clients engaged in Belt and Road projects.China’s Belt and Road Initiative is creating enormous business opportunities throughout Asia, Africa and Europe which HSBC could help you exploit. Covering two trade routes, the overall objective is to increase regional trade and encourage economic cooperation.

Stuart Gulliver, September 2016:

Nicholas Wilson, January 2018:

Meanwhile Cameron’s China fund is apparently hitting problems:

For more on HSBC, China, the French, and UK Nuclear Power Plant at Hinkley Point:

Genie in a Bottle

Davos

In the third series of House of Cards, the President (played by Kevin Spacey) decides to create a New Deal-type jobs programme.

A Keynesian stimulus — just like America First.

This week’s Davos World Economic Forum is the perfect chance for Trump to talk up his protectionist programme:

Trump’s only attending to stop President Xi stealing the show.

But authoritarian China is now so embedded in the world economy that even Trump can’t put the Genie back in the bottle.

President Xi the Genie is quite a thought.

Especially as Ali Baba, not Aladdin, represents the biggest 1001 Nights story in China.

AliPay, owned by Ant Financial, part of the Alibaba Group, is expanding globally.

They just had a buyout of MoneyGram in the US rejected on security grounds.

But they’re already here in the UK – they are a backer of Ofo.

And in the shops too –  at least in Qatari-owned Harrods.

China are also in the English Premier League:

As Cameron and Lord Chadlington’s UK-China fund is already lobbying on behalf of Chinese Government backed firms to penetrate UK Public Services in Fin-Tech and Healthcare Sectors ie NHS, it’s time to start worrying: 

It won’t be long before AliBaba run the NHS along with US insurance firm United Health.

Ali Baba have very sophisticated voice and facial recognition technology.

Recognising your voice in a crowded room.

This is happening at the House of Commons Health Select Committee on Tuesday:

2.30 pm

Health – Oral Evidence Session
Memorandum of understanding on data-sharing between NHS Digital and the Home Office

Yusef Azad, Director of Strategy, National AIDS Trust
Dr Joanne Bailey, Member of the Advisory Panel, National Data Guardian
Marissa Begonia, Coordinator, Voices of Domestic Workers
Dr Lucinda Hiam, General Practitioner, Doctors of the World
Professor John Newton, Director of Health Improvement, Public Health England
Lord O’Shaughnessy, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health (Lords), Department of Health
Sir Ian Andrews, Non-executive Director, NHS Digital
Sarah Wilkinson, Chief Executive Officer, NHS Digital
Caroline Nokes, Minister for Immigration, Home Office
Jonathan Marron, Director General, Community Care, Department of Health
Hugh Ind, Director General of Immigration Enforcement, Home Office

Location: The Wilson Room, Portcullis House

What’s going on?

Potential parallels with the Indian Aadhaar Biometric ID card System & the Chinese Sesame Credit Social Credit Rating Agency (owned by AliBaba) — with a bit of deportation thrown in.

In China if you get a high Sesame Credit score you can get a visa and skip customs as you are trusted.

On the flip-side will you need a high UK social credit score just to stay in the UK?

Aadhaar and Sesame Credit link State, FinTech, Big Data, Health, Insurance, Surveillance & Privacy.

Sesame Credit is a good example of State and Corporations working hand in hand.

TenCent are another big Chinese firm that do Social Credit Systems.

Despite the American Committee for Foreign Investment in the US (CFIUS) recently blocking Ali Baba’s Ant Financial from buying MoneyGram for Security / Data reasons, in the UK we’re handing the Chinese Government the keys to our Nuclear Park — so why not all our data and (linked) healthcare technology too?

Why wouldn’t Home secretary Amber Rudd use such surveillance technology?

Amber Rudd knows a thing or two about Economic Crime:

Nicholas Wilson voiced some concerns at the Hustings at Hastings

 

Turns out once again that he was utterly vindicated

Chinese Surveillance Technology

Any surveillance technology Amber Rudd buys from China is going to be even more effective for having been developed under authoritarian conditions.

Hinkley

This is from HSBC whistleblower Nicholas Wilson

Here is a recent must watch film about HSBC, UK, China and Hinkley – Unbelievable final 20 minutes:

The National Data Guardian released a report in December.

They say it’s to inform patients of the uses of data sharing but it looks to me like it’s all about Big Business, FinTech and Insurance
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/national-data-guardian-2017-report-published

National Data Guardian for Health and Care 2017 report

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/668729/NDG_Progress_Report_FINAL_v1.1.pdf

Speaking of NHS and Big Data, also taking place on Tuesday:

3.15 pm

Artificial Intelligence Committee – Oral Evidence Session

This session will look at how algorithms and AI are changing the nature of healthcare delivery. It will also consider the ways in which the NHS can harness the value of its data without compromising on patient privacy and consent.

(at 3:30 pm)
Dr Julian Huppert, Chair, Independent Review Panel for DeepMind Health
Ms Nicola Perrin, Head, Understanding Patient Data, Wellcome Trust
Dr Sobia Raza, Head of Science, PHG Foundation
(at 4:30 pm)
Dame Fiona Caldicott, National Data Guardian for Health and Care, Office of the National Data Guardian
Dr Hugh Harvey, Clinical Artificial Intelligence Researcher and Consultant Radiologist, Guy’s and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust
Professor Martin Severs, Medical Director, NHS Digital

Location: Room 4A, Palace of Westminster

 

What happened to that €1 trillion?

stealing QE

Those whom the gods wish to destroy, they first make mad.

Under normal circumstances the transfer of €1 trillion of public money to ANONYMOUS BANKERS with no meaningful audit trail would be representative of a society with corruption tolerance levels so staggeringly off the charts that they be as palpable as they be endemic.

Just contemplating such a state would have one feeling as out of place as Gulliver in Lilliput and the flying island of Laputa.

en.wikipedia.org en.wikipedia.org

Yet this is what the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Union (EU) have done to their own people who’ve been deprived of all national sovereignty in place of which they’ve had a currency foisted upon them over which their every national parliament and government has completely ceded control.

When I asked the EU & ECB what happened to that €1 trillion, they wouldn’t say.

The debt is on the ECB’s balance sheet – there are plenty of assets to show for it – but we’ll never know what exactly was bought, who did the buying, who off, nor for how much.

Inventing Money

The European Central Bank, the world’s third largest printer of money  — behind the US Federal Reserve and the People’s Bank of China —  distributed a trillion Euros to private financial institutions in exchange for various bonds over a two year period.

In November 2014 at the beginning of what became known as their Quantitative Easing (ECB QE) programme, I asked them to disclose exactly which bonds they were buying. I also asked them whom they were buying them off, the price of each bond and the amount spent on commission.

As they were spending billions of euros of public money during a time of extreme austerity – it felt quite normal that EU citizens be told where their money was being spent (and sent).

Disclosure

The only information the public had been told at that time was that the ECB were buying repackaged bank loans (Covered Bonds) and Asset Backed Securities (ABSs) in order to stop deflation and maintain inflation at 2%.

Despite the simple nature of my request — I asked for a country by country, bank by bank, product by product breakdown of what the ECB had been buying — the bank refused to disclose the full nature of its holdings.

Decision

Mid 2016, more than a year and a half after I originally asked them, the ECB — and the European Ombudsman — ruled against my appeal for transparency.

Click below for the link to the EU Ombudsman decision on the case:

But the question remains: What happened to the money?

Groupthink

Bizarrely the woman who runs the European Ombudsman, Emily O’Reilly, has a reputation for being a fair-minded adjudicator.

Also in mid-2016 the Irish papers portrayed O’Reilly as a friend of transparency who had rebuked the Irish Central Bank and the ECB for not publishing their correspondence during the Irish Bailouts of 2010.

If only those newspapers had known how O’Reilly has sided with the ECB’s right to hide behind ‘commercial confidentiality’ to prevent its citizens from knowing who got the trillion euros.

O’Reilly ruled in favour of the ECB without once consulting me — the complainant — to find out why I had brought the case or to let me challenge the groupthink logic of her flawed judgment.

Too little, too late

Ironically on the date of the ruling (18th July 2016) the ECB itself announced that another slice of its QE programme, the Corporate Bond Purchase Programme, would publish its ISIN codes.

This is a screenshot of the paywalled Financial Times story with the announcement about the new stance on ISIN codes.

ft ISINsHow funny that I had to wait 18 months to get a definitive ‘no’ on receiving the ISIN codes for the Covered Bond and ABS QE programme, only for the Corporate Bond Purchase Programme to publish its ISIN codes on the very same day.

A Pyrrhic Victory perhaps?

Time will Tell.

Corruptissima respublica, plurimae leges

The most corrupt state, the most laws – Tacitus

My feeling is that the ECB don’t want the public to know how much they are protecting the very same German financiers that benefited from the ECB’s imposition of austerity, deregulation and privatisation policies in southern Europe.

I believe the worst offender is DePfa / Deutsche Pfandbriefe.

Just as the IRA and Baader Meinhoff are known for their politically inspired terror campaigns in the 1970s so has Deutsche Pfandbriefe exported financial terrorism throughout Europe from its tax avoiding, financial engineering Dublin Headquarters as of the early 2000’s when it re-domiciled to save cash.

ECB QE and commercial confidentiality for public money are the very definition of double standards and, in this case, perpetuate the myth that North Europeans are honest and that everyone else is corrupt.

I appreciate that this is not something many people are willing to accept – such is the scale of our programming.

Just as with PPP / PFI in the UK, commercial confidentiality and financial engineering remain the respectable face of corporate fascism and fraud.

This piece was originally published in July 2016. I have decided to republish. Many older londonconversation / financialeyes posts have sadly somehow disappeared. I’m treating this as a chance to reflect on and revisit some of what I’ve been up to these last few years.

I was a reluctant Brexit voter.

This post shows how strongly EU decisions are stacked in favour of capital.

Although in many ways I do regret having voted for Brexit, the fact remains that we are now closer to having a credible opposition in this country albeit one which has difficulties reconciling itself with its recent warmongering, PFI-promoting, Blairite past.

I’m not saying I feel vindicated as the signs of more equal society just aren’t there.

But I don’t think I believe the notion of economic equality is ever going to serious take root in this country again so the best we can hope for is to protect freedom, root out rampant corruption when we see it, and contemplate why, for whatever reason, it can’t be stopped.

What happened to that €1 trillion?

stealing QE

Those whom the gods wish to destroy, they first make mad.

Handing €1 trillion of public money to ANONYMOUS bankers with no publicly available audit trail would be corrupt on a scale so staggeringly as to be virtually beyond comprehension.

Yet this is what the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Union (EU) have done.

When I asked them to disclose where the money has gone, they made it clear they never will.

Inventing Money

The European Central Bank, the world’s third largest printer of money  — behind the US Federal Reserve and the People’s Bank of China —  distributed a trillion Euros to private financial institutions in exchange for various bonds over a two year period.

In November 2014 at the beginning of what became known as their Quantitative Easing (ECB QE) programme, I asked them to disclose exactly which bonds they were buying. I also asked them whom they were buying them off, the price of each bond and the amount spent on commission.

As they were spending billions of euros of public money during a time of extreme austerity – it felt quite normal that EU citizens be informed where exactly their money was being sent.

Disclosure

The only information the public had been told at that time was that the ECB were buying repackaged bank loans (Covered Bonds) and Asset Backed Securities (ABSs) in order to stop deflation and maintain inflation at 2%.

Despite the simple nature of my request — I asked for a country by country, bank by bank, product by product breakdown of what the ECB had been buying — the bank refused to disclose the full nature of its holdings.

Decision

This week, more than a year and a half after I originally asked them, the ECB — and the European Ombudsman — ruled against my appeal for transparency.

Click below for the link to the EU Ombudsman decision on the case:

But the question remains: What happened to the money?

Groupthink

Bizarrely the woman who runs the European Ombudsman, Emily O’Reilly, has a reputation for being a fair-minded adjudicator.

This week the Irish papers portrayed O’Reilly as a friend of transparency who had rebuked the Irish Central Bank and the ECB for not publishing their correspondence during the Irish Bailouts of 2010.

If only those newspapers had known how O’Reilly has sided with the ECB’s right to hide behind ‘commercial confidentiality’ to prevent its citizens from knowing who got the trillion euros.

O’Reilly ruled in favour of the ECB without once consulting me — the complainant — to find out why I had brought the case or to let me challenge the groupthink logic of her flawed judgment.

Too little, too late

Ironically on the date of the ruling (18th July 2016) the ECB itself announced that another slice of its QE programme, the Corporate Bond Purchase Programme, would publish its ISIN codes.

This is a screenshot of the paywalled Financial Times story with the announcement about the new stance on ISIN codes.

ft ISINsHow funny that I had to wait 18 months to get a definitive ‘no’ on receiving the ISIN codes for the Covered Bond and ABS QE programme, only for the Corporate Bond Purchase Programme to publish its ISIN codes on the very same day.

A Pyrrhic Victory perhaps?

Time will Tell.

Corruptissima respublica, plurimae leges

The most corrupt state, the most laws – Tacitus

My feeling is that the ECB don’t want the public to know how much they are protecting the very same German financiers that benefited from the ECB’s imposition of austerity, deregulation and privatisation policies in southern Europe.

I believe the worst offender is DePfa / Deutsche Pfandbriefe.

Just as the IRA and Baader Meinhoff are known for their politically inspired terror campaigns in the 1970s so has Deutsche Pfandbriefe exported financial terrorism throughout Europe from its tax avoiding, financial engineering Dublin Headquarters as of the early 2000’s when it re-domiciled to save cash.

ECB QE and commercial confidentiality for public money are the very definition of double standards and, in this case, perpetuate the myth that North Europeans are honest and that everyone else is corrupt.

I appreciate that this is not something many people are willing to accept – such is the scale of our programming.

Just as with PPP / PFI in the UK, commercial confidentiality and financial engineering remain the respectable face of corporate fascism and fraud.

This piece was originally published in July 2016. I have decided to republish. Many older londonconversation / financialeyes posts have sadly somehow disappeared. I’m treating this as a chance to reflect on and revisit some of what I’ve been up to these last few years.

I was a reluctant Brexit voter.

This post does shows how strongly EU decisions are stacked in favour of capital. Although in many ways I do regret having voted for Brexit, the fact remains that we are now closer to having a credible opposition in this country albeit one which has difficulties reconciling itself with its recent warmongering, PFI-promoting, Blairite past.

I’m not saying I feel vindicated as the signs of more equal society just aren’t there. But then again I don’t think I believe the notion of economic equality is ever going to take root in this country so the best we can hope for is to protect freedom, root out rampant corruption when we see it, and philosophise when, for whatever reason, it can’t be stopped.

Mommy, What’s an Endocrine Disruptor?

It was Trade-Related

I first heard the term Endocrine Disruptor three years ago while researching the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP) also known as the EU – US trade agreement.

US firms wanted to dismantle EU safety standards and make big money selling toxic food and chemicals to 500 million EU citizens.

The agreement has since been torpedoed by the Trump administration — but its legacy lives on.

The Case against Sugar

In the Case against Sugar, Science Journalist Gary Taubes talks about Endocrine Disruptors, Empty Calories and the link between the rise in diabetes and obesity and the adoption of a western diet.

Endocrine Disruptors increase your family’s cancer risk and can be found in practically everything from plastic wrapping to Monsanto’s controversial Roundup Glyphosate pesticide of which traces can be found in supermarket fruit, vegetables, and processed foods.

In 2016 Germany opposed the renewal of Roundup’s 5 year EU licence — at the behest of their coalition partners, the centre left SPD:

But as there isn’t a fully fledged government in Berlin right now, Chancellor Merkel’s acting Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt was able to vote to renew the EU licence behind Merkel and SPD Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks’ back.

Despite being politically toxic only 18 months ago it somehow sneaked through and so the enormous German resistance to TTIP & pesticides finally came to nothing.

Monsanto’s Roundup Glyphosate is an organophosphate.

It shouldn’t feel that weird to see Germany voting to kill people — when it comes to chemical weapons, they wrote the book.

But that’s not to say no-one else tried :

Better Living Through Chemistry

Du Pont’s Slogan “Better Living Through Chemistry” was co-opted by DJ Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim whose fans popped countless chemicals including MDMA, Cocaine, Ketamine and Ecstasy. .


Bayer

German mega-corporation Bayer are in the middle of buying up US-owned Monsanto.

This transatlantic merger is proving that the renewal of the EU Roundup licence is just TTIP by other means.

And Bayer have form.

They invented Aspirin, and Heroin.

Under the IG Farben label they made Zyglon B, the gas used by the Nazis in the Gas Chambers.

Zyglon B was originally just another pesticide — invented by Fritz Haber’s research group at the IG Farben-owned Degecsh pest control  company.

Fritz Haber was German, originally of Jewish background, and won the 1918 Nobel Prize for chemistry for his invention of the Haber-Bosch process which was used for both fertilisers and chemical weapons.

Haber is known as the father of chemical weapons.

His first wife Clara Immerwahr was the daughter of a well to do chemist who operated a beet sugar factory on his estate.

Immerwahr was the first woman in Germany to obtain a PhD in Chemistry. She contributed to Haber’s work but was a pacifist and woman’s rights activist.

She committed suicide in 1915 apparently upset about the role her husband played in overseeing the killing of thousands of soldiers in Belgium in the first known use of chemical weapons as a weapon of mass destruction.

Many of Monsanto and Bayer’s pesticide products double up as chemical weapons.

The following excerpt is from the early 2000s:

In the 1930s, chemists working for the German company Bayer discovered the highly poisonous properties of organophosphate compounds. By then, Bayer had already merged with BASF, Hoechst and other companies to form
the huge chemical conglomerate I.G. Farben; today Bayer is poised to become the worlds largest manufacturer of herbicides and pesticides and a leading source of genetically engineered seed varietieswith its recent takeover of the biotech giant Aventis CropScience. (Aventis is the company responsible for the Starlink variety of insecticidal GE corn, which was never approved for human consumption and thus forced the recall of some 300 name-brand processed food products during 2000-01.) As all of German industry became absorbed into the growing Nazi war machine, Bayers organophosphate compounds were developed simultaneously
as agricultural pesticides and as nerve gases for military use.

Agriculture — War by Other Means
Back in 1998, the Economist didn’t hide it’s enthusiasm for Better Living Through Chemistry.

France & Italy

France and Italy oppose the Roundup licence renewal and both plan to ban the pesticide :

One Man’s Profit is Another Woman’s Diabetes

According to vegan journalist Jill Ettinger, in her 2012 article From BPA to Glyphosate: What Are the Risks of Endocrine Disruptors?  Endocrine Disruptors are everywhere including the air we breathe.

The EU is still trying to limit its citizens’ exposure to Endocrine Disruptors but given the enormous food and agriculture industry lobby, the path has been rocky.

EU plan to Regulate Endocrine Disruptors

Some progress was reported last week, but it’s far too early to celebrate.

Just a few weeks ago, in October, the European Parliament voted against the European Commission’s steps to regulate Endocrine Disruptors.

So, unlike with Roundup, at EU level, the Endocrine Disruptor situation may be moving in the right direction.

Dire Beets 

Theresa May was diagnosed with type 1 Diabetes in 2014. Sweet tooth?

David ‘Sugar Man’ Davis 

Brexit Secretary David Davis spent 17 years working at Tate & Lyle whose UK sugar processing operations have since been sold to the American ASR Group. 

ASR backed Brexit – for good reason!

Davis himself was in the SAS and has degrees in Computing, Molecular Science and Business from Warwick, London Business School, and Harvard.

But he’s not taking Brexit, British interests or information management very seriously:

All this talk of chemistry, the military, and the clown like approach to information management reminds me of another international laughing stock from way back in 2003: Ali Hassan Al-Majid aka Chemical Ali

Sweet Home Alabama

According to the Times, Tate & Lyle switched out of its historic sugar operation in 2010 and now focuses on developing new products including sweeteners, many of which are made in Alabama and delivered to Mexico to go into soft drinks.

Tate & Lyle diversified into biomaterials in 2007. They currently specialise in plastics, biofuel and processed foods.

It looks as though, as usual, they are using the same chemicals for both purposes. All of which seem to have an endocrine disruption / metabolic disorder inducing aspect.

Maybe David Davis’s old firm has had a hand in giving Theresa May type 1 diabetes, a metabolic disorder that can be brought on by poor diet.

The chemicals mentioned in their wikipedia entry include:

1,3-Propanediol features mainly in bioprocess engineering, which includes the manufacturing of products such as agriculture, food, feed, pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, chemicals, and polymers and paper from biological materials & treatment of waste water.

Polylactic acid (PLA) is used in many products including nappies, replacement hips, 3D printers, tea bags, and e-cigarettes.

From where I stand Polylactic acid  has something of the endocrine disruptor about it.

Diabetes is the most common endocrine / metabolic disorder.

This whole Brexit thing is starting to look like a game of Endocrinopoly.

Capital Without Borders

Brooke Harrington’s excellent 2016 book, Capital Without Borders, about the world of Trust and Estate Professionals reminds us that there is more to Brexit than pesticides and sugar.

Brooke Harrington is currently being targeted by the Danish Home Office for sharing her academic work with Danish Policy Makers. Unfair and Surreal.

Heretical Finance

We read her book as part of the Heretical Finance Book Club in April. A real eye-opener.

This was last year’s selection. 2018’s will be out soon.

If you’ve got this far, you could probably do with some Parliament / Funkadelic.

Free your Mind and your Ass will follow!

Drilling is Green insists Alaskan Senator

Trump 2020

Showy events like yesterday’s White House tax cut speeches make Trump’s re-election look assured.

But wheeling out African American politicians like Tim Scott to talk about how the tax cut is for ‘distressed communities’ and single mothers while Ben Carson is asked to pray for tax cuts in Cabinet Meetings could seriously backfire.

How long will America fall for Pity the Billionaire politics?

Breitbart’s Billionaire Bannon recently spoke to an AstroTurf White-Funded Black Business Group even while campaigning for Roy Moore.

UK Alt-Right

The Alt-Right has quite a following here in the UK:

Including the Political Sketch Writer of the Daily Mail, Quentin Letts:

Energy Dominance

Senator Dan Johnson claims high US safety standards mean drilling is good for the environment.

That’s some prizewinning flexibility in the face of facts.

But Ohio Senator Orrin Hatch takes things to a whole new level at 04:03.

Yes, the world needs America — but with friends like these, God help us.

Alaska

The Breitbart View

James Delingpole

An elder statesman in the world of UK Alt-Right politics — check out his Breitbart podcast— it’s designed for the corruptibly anti-corrupt.

I’ve listened to it a few times. The honesty is comforting. Can’t say we always agree. But it’s unfair on its own terms.

The contradictions don’t hide – they’re part of the fun.

I read somewhere that Delingpole smoked weed with David Cameron at Oxford. He must hate him now. Far too liberal for Delingpole.

More on Cameron (and HSBC) soon.

As for Delingpole – if he dies in battle, they should still let him into heaven.

Groupthink

Having moved around in some ‘progressive’ circles over the years, I’ve exposed myself to more than my fair share of groupthink, infiltration, astro-turfing and controlled opposition.

Greatest Threat to Freedom

Better not to kill each other when we can all attack the planet instead

Technology and automation are fine if you’re invested. Anyone can pick up a bit of bitcoin!

Why end slavery when it is so profitable for some?

I feel there are arguments that would be made along these lines that parallel Trump’s $1.5 trillion tax repeal argument. They will mainly be found in the Wall Street Journal.