Finance Capital

Une voix d’un passé pas si lointain…

Jean-Michel Charlier réalise cet entretien avec Léon Degrelle en 1978, lorsque ce survivant du fascisme européen a alors 72 ans. Ce qui frappe, en regardant ce film, c’est l’énergie, presque la jeunesse de Degrelle, son enthousiasme intact pour la cause, ses mimiques d’orateur publique, son plaisir évident à raconter ses exploits. Contrairement à bien d’autres fascistes ouest-européens, contentés de devenir collaborateurs en chambre, ou même tortionnaires au service des occupants, Léon Degrelle fut un combattant, là où la vraie guerre avait lieu: le front à l’est. Et lui, a survécu. Sa personnalité, sa bravoure indiscutable, et son “culot” proverbial, rappellent Gabriele d’Annunzio, le précurseur du fascisme italien.

 

Léon Degrelle (15 juin 1906 à Bouillon, Belgique – 31 mars 1994 à Málaga, Espagne) Homme politique, écrivain, directeur de presse et journaliste belge, ancien combattant du front de l’est, Brigadeführer des Waffen S.S., Volksführer de Wallonie. Il est le fondateur du rexisme, une idéologie au départ nationaliste belge, proche du fascisme et anti-national-socialiste qui, durant la guerre, se rapprocha du national-socialisme, pour finir dans la collaboration la plus extrême.

The reason why our world is dying: the ongoing financial war behind all wars

The small core…

Global Political Analysis

Introduction

On this blog several posts are focussing on the topic of private Banks creating money out of nothing – with special regard to [1,2] – offering analyses on the far-reaching social-economic consequences of the financial system built upon such practice. Due to the special and global relevance of this issue – affecting all countries as an imminent and persistent threat of the same Debt Crisis as the one that led to annexation of Greece [1,3] – here we rephrase and outline again the formerly elaborated main points, along with the implications we can capture after connecting the dots among them.

In a genuinely democratic world, mainstream academia and media would address this subject with top priority and would warn the public of the alarming global trend arising from a financial system that is ruled and exploited by an unelected minority, yet this discussion is excluded even from the curricula…

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How Corrupt is Britain?

Reality on the island…

 

Emperor Obama’s Old New Clothes and The US Energy War

The plain truth, why we are where we are, and the negation of democracy and human rights, for gas.

On Sleepwalking, and unintended consequences of War

Reflections on a reading of Christopher Clark’s The Sleepwalkers, How Europe Went to War in 1914 (Allen Lane, 2012, Penguin Books, 2013, © Christopher Clark, 2012)

Dragutin Dimitrijevic ApisThis is a drama whose ending we know, only too well. It is to Christopher Clark’s credit to make us realise, at long last, how it started. In awe, we observe the events of those haunting years, from the Balkan “crisis” of 1912, to the July 1914 Austrian ultimatum to Serbia, following the assassination of Frank-Ferdinand, heir to the throne, as if watching, in slow motion, the silent collapse of a tall building, as we did in September 2001.

“The Sleepwalkers” read, at times, like the scenario of an implacable nightmare, or a devilish horror movie. Surely, we think, “they” must have realised, “didn’t they know what was coming?” We see Poincaré, ensconced in his inept germanophobia, on the deck of his warship, on his way to meeting with the tzar in Saint-Petersburg, we follow the sickly assassin on his progress to Sarajevo, nurtured by the sinister Black Hand, we listen to the pontifications of Lord Grey, the British Foreign Secretary… With horror, and perhaps not without a reflection on the crimes of our own time, we see the Italian Air Force bombing Libya. Few of those events do not have some eerie counterparts in our time, in these first decades of the twentieth century. Of course, it is not that history risks repeating itself: only human folly, like Capital, knows how to reproduce itself, whatever the circumstances.

1914 Austria-Hungary is surely not 2014 Russia, nor today’s Ukraine yesterday’s Serbia.

Clark’s equally masterly “Iron Kingdom” makes a more comfortable reading for a convinced European: perhaps because its conclusion, the reintegration of Prussia into a modern, peaceful and reunited Germany, is more palatable to our mind, than the inexorable prospect of Armageddon in  “The Sleepwalkers”. For the Sleepwalkers are among us, and in the restless comfort of this fragile peace, we wonder if we are not them. Clark stresses the importance of understanding the thought process of the then decision makers, rather than the ritual attribution of responsibilities. His account makes, for us, in 2014, painful reading: confusion, mistrust, fear, unaccountable media (already…), propensity to posturing, lies, false promises, it is already all there. For the “Entente”, the improbable and shaky alliance of the French Republic, its historical arch-rival Great Britain, and imperial Russia, should we read today’s Union? Surely not, I hear you say.

Then, there is the Other, as yet hardly visible. Yet, by 1910, the US industrial production has already overtaken the combined outputs of the United Kingdom and Germany. The “Great War” would kill over fifteen millions human beings, devastate Belgium, Northern France, part of Austria, Italy and the Balkans. It will trigger murderous revolutions in Russia and Germany, and tragically end three, once powerful, dynasties: the Habsburg, the Hohenzollern and the Romanov. The UK and France would end up in debt for decades. Their colonial empires would be, by then, doomed to annihilation.

Image: Dragutin Dimitrijevic Apis (Драгутин Димитријевић Апис), leader of the Black Hand and prominent member of the Serbian General Staff

The Shadowy Residents of One Hyde Park—And How the Super-Wealthy Are Hiding Their Money | Vanity Fair

The Shadowy Residents of One Hyde Park—And How the Super-Wealthy Are Hiding Their Money | Vanity Fair.

Here come the real masters of our world…

Michel de Montaigne and the Independent Commission on Banking

The Memory Chalet

A must read this year is Tony Judt’s posthumous collection of essays “The Memory Chalet” reviewed by Thomas Nagel in this issue of the NYRB.

“The articulate recreation of the active life that he has lost, writes Prof. Nagel, is Judt’s answer to his imprisonment and impending death, and it gives him a more personal posthumous existence than do his historical and critical writings, important as they are. These eloquent personal recollections are infused with historical consciousness, but they also explain and reflect the strong opinions and attitudes that marked Tony Judt as a distinctive presence among us, unforgettable to those who knew or read him. Wary of group identity, he was an Englishman but exceptionally cosmopolitan, a Jew who became an outspoken critic of Zionism, and an egalitarian social democrat who was also an elitist and a defender of meritocracy.”

From the White House to Michel de Montaigne

I am not altogether desperate to uncover the identity of the author of “O: A Presidential Novel” but enjoyed Mark Lawson’s piece in the Guardian (22 January). Of particular interest to this reader were the references to Vivian Grey and to the lineage of the ” model political novel”. Disraeli, Trollope, R. Penn Warren and Allen Drurry… forbears indeed…

In the same Guardian issue Saul Frampton’s delightful extracts on Michel de Montaigne and the “true language of human nature” reminded me to push “When I Am Playing With My Cat, How Do I Know She Is Not Playing With Me?” to my trolley at the next opportunity. Another must read.

The Road to Serfdom

No surprise yesterday in the speech of John Vickers, chairman of the Independent Commission on Banking. Inadequacy of “Basel III”, nefarious effect of the disappearance of any barriers between ” retail” and so-called “investment” banking (remember “Big Bang”?), costs to society of bailing out the speculators, all have been debated to saturation since the onset of the what started as the “sub-prime” crisis. What is striking, on both sides of the Atlantic, is governments and regulators’ apparent incapacity to bring the “big banks” to any serious commitment to real changes. This appears equally to extend to any commitment to small businesses from the four largest UK banks (Preston’s Picks of 22 January). The choice is ever clearer: finance capital or society, them (obscene profits, speculation, derivatives of derivatives, plunder and wastage) or us (the real economy, households and businesses, our children’s futures).