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Antonius Aquinas

Antonius Aquinas

Antonius Aquinas is an author, lecturer, a contributor to SGT Report, The Burning Platform, Acting Man, and Zero Hedge.

Articles by Antonius Aquinas

The Ultimate Regulatory Reform: Abolish Fractional Reserve Banking!

21 hours ago

Convocation of the Clueless
The Trump Administration has presented the first part of its plan to overhaul a number of Wall Street financial regulations, many of which were enacted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.  The report is in response to Executive Order 13772 in which the US Treasury Department is to provide findings “examining the United States’ financial regulatory system and detailing executive actions and regulatory changes that can be immediately undertaken to provide much-needed relief.”*
 
Neo gets a dose of financial system red-pilling. [PT]
 

In release of the first phase of the report, Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin stated:
 
“Properly structuring regulation of the U.S. financial system is critical to achieve the administration’s goal of sustained economic

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Pope Francis and Angela Merkel: Enemies of European Civilization

8 days ago

Pushing the Global Warming Scam
Two of Europe’s greatest contemporary enemies recently got together to compare notes and discuss how they were going to further undermine and destabilize what remains of the Continent’s civilization.  Pope Francis and German Chancellor Angela Merkel met on June 17, in the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace to discuss the issues which will be raised at a Group of 20 summit meeting in Hamburg, from July 7-8.
 
Preparing for the G-20 gab fest: Pope Francis and Angela Merkel, two of the most harmful busybodies and world improvers of modern times.
Photo credit: Credit Ettore Ferrari / European Pressphoto Agency
 

The Vatican said that Frau Merkel and the Pope discussed “the need for the international community to combat poverty, hunger, terrorism and climate

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Donald Trump is an Economic Ignoramus on Trade

22 days ago

Upholding a Well-Worn Tradition
Not surprisingly, Donald Trump has followed in the infamous footsteps of his presidential predecessors in the transition from candidate to chief executive.  Invariably, every candidate for the presidency makes a whole host of promises, the vast majority of which are horrible and typically only exacerbate the problems they attempt to resolve.
 
With respect to trade, Donald Trump has adopted a position that is essentially indistinguishable from the 17th century French Mercantilism of Jean-Baptiste Colbert. It is a sure way to enrich a selected few to the detriment of the masses. At the same time, protectionism seems to superficially “make sense” to many people whose understanding of economics is not exactly the best, to put it politely (admittedly, in order

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Pope Francis and Libertarianism

May 22, 2017

Papal Delusions
The purported pope of the Catholic Church recently attacked “libertarianism.”  As a number of theologians have ably shown, Jorge Bergoglio, a.k.a Pope Francis, cannot be a legitimate pope, since he was neither ordained as a priest or consecrated as a bishop in the traditional Catholic rite of Holy Orders.  And since he is not a bishop, he cannot be “Bishop of Rome” – a prerequisite for being the head of the universal Church.
 
The collectivist pope Francis – what a contrast to the revered John Paul II, who not only tirelessly argued in support of individual liberty, but had a firm grasp of economic issues as well (we have contrasted their economic views in “A Tale of Two Popes”). John Paul II realized that the Church had to stand up in defense of the free market economy

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Why is North Korea So Unreasonable?

May 2, 2017

No Shouts of Joy from Kim Jong-Un
On April 28, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told the U.N. that North Korea “must dismantle its nuclear missile programs” before the US “can even consider talks.”*
Sounds reasonable.
Why hasn’t the Kim Jong-Un regime responded with open arms and shouts of joy for this generous and fair-minded proposal from Uncle Sam?
 
One probably has to catch Kim on a good day. Here he is visiting North Korea’s new bread-roll auto-fac and evidently he’s enjoying himself. Presumably, he’s also feeling reasonable.
 

Maybe it is because North Korea not only has first-hand knowledge of US “diplomacy,” but it can point to the grisly consequences that happen to regimes that do not have nuclear capabilities when they fall out of favor with Washington’s  war mongers.  Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria are just some recent examples.
Nor does North Korea have to look around the globe for what the US does to nations without nuclear arsenals, but can recall events which took place not so far away.
For more than a decade, America mercilessly pulverized the little, defenseless country of Vietnam.  Despite the destruction and mass murder inflicted, it was to no avail, except of course to line the pockets of arms manufactures while American citizens were drained of their wealth and blood.

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On the Commemoration of World War I: From Woodrow Wilson to Donald Trump

April 20, 2017

A Disastrous Decision
It is altogether fitting that the US attack on a Syrian airport, the dropping of a MOAB on defenseless Afghanistan, and the potential outbreak of nuclear war with North Korea have all come in the very month in which an American president led the nation on its road to empire one hundred years earlier.
 
Donald Trump and Woodrow Wilson, who waged “The War to End All Wars” – which turned out to be such a glaring misnomer that it will stand forever as an example of the deceitfulness of war propaganda. Donald Trump wants to save incubator babies or something…
 

President Trump’s aggressive actions and all of America’s previous imperialistic endeavors can ultimately be traced to Woodrow Wilson’s disastrous decision to bring the country into the First World War on April 6, 1917. This month, therefore, should be one of national mourning for the decision to enter that horrific conflict changed America and, for that matter, the world for the worse.
Had the US remained neutral, the war would most likely have come to a far quicker and more politically palatable conclusion. However, the entry of America on the Entente side prolonged the conflict and extended its economic and political destruction to such a degree that the Old Order could not be put back together again.

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The Cost of a Trump Presidency

April 12, 2017

Opportunity Cost Rears its Head
Last Thursday’s wanton attack on a Syrian air field by the US and its bellicose actions toward North Korea have brought the real cost of candidate Trump’s landslide victory last November to the forefront.
 
It didn’t take long for Donald Trump to drop his non-interventionist mask. The decision was likely driven by Machiavellian considerations with respect to domestic conditions, but that doesn’t make it any better.
 

Unlike most laymen, accountants, and financial analysts, economists look at cost differently.  For economists, cost or more specifically, “opportunity cost,” means “a benefit that a person could have received, but gave up, to take another course of action.  Stated differently, opportunity cost represents an alternative given up when a decision is made.”
Such thinking can be roughly applied to the political realm.  In the case of last fall’s US Presidential election, the cost of Donald Trump’s unexpected victory was not the money spent on the campaign, but the diffusion (hopefully, only temporary) of the growing anti-Establishment groundswell that was percolating not only in America, but across the globe.

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The American Empire and Economic Collapse

April 4, 2017

Dashed Hopes
Despite widespread optimism among libertarians, classical liberals, non-interventionists, progressive peaceniks and everybody else opposed to the US Empire that some of its murderous reins may finally be pulled in with the election of Donald Trump, it appears that these hopes have now been dashed.
 
Liberty… some of it is still above water, but definitely not as much as there could or should be.*
 

While the hope for a less meddlesome US foreign policy is not completely extinguished and would never have existed had the Wicked Witch of Chappaqua been elected, so far a number of President Trump’s foreign policy actions have been little different from those of his recent predecessors.
 
Always keep in mind that it ultimately does not matter whether one likes or dislikes Donald Trump, or whether he fulfills anyone’s expectations (naturally, he is fair game for criticism – we want to emphasize something else here). The moment the Democrats decided to nominate the Wicked Witch of Chappaqua as their presidential candidate, citizens with an IQ above room temperature and a healthy survival instinct simply no longer had a choice. If the Republicans had nominated a string-operated talking rag doll, it would still have been every American’s sacred duty to elect it.

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Welcome to Totalitarian America, President Trump!

March 10, 2017

Trump vs. the Deep State
If there had been any doubt that the land of the free and home of the brave is now a totalitarian society, the revelations that its Chief Executive Officer has been spied upon while campaigning for that office and during his brief tenure as president should now be allayed.
 
Image adapted from the cover of “Deep State #5” – depicting an assassin from the future
 

President Trump joins the very crowded list of opponents of the American State which includes the Tea Party, tax resistors, non-interventionists, immigration opponents, traditional family advocates, and a host of others who have been spied upon, persecuted and badgered by federal “intelligence” authorities.
While Congress conducted some feeble hearings and investigations of the shenanigans of the US spy agencies during the interminable Obummer Administration, no real action or reform was taken to reign in the eavesdropping and spying by the national security state on American citizens.
Hopefully, the surveillance of President Trump will change his outlook on the US “intelligence community” especially in regard to those courageous souls who have spoken out and risked life and limb to alert the public about their rulers’ nefarious activities.

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California, Nestle and Decentralization

February 24, 2017

Goodbye, Socialist Paradise
Nestle USA has announced that it will move its headquarters from Glendale, California, to Rosslyn, Virginia, taking with it about 1200 jobs.  The once Golden State has lost some 1690 businesses since 2008 and a net outflow of a million of mostly middle-class people from the state from 2004 to 2013 due to its onerous tax rates, the oppressive regulatory burden, and the genuine kookiness which pervades among its ruling elites.*
 
There has been a remarkable reversal of flow of people and businesses – but California’s ruling elite seemingly remains utterly clueless as to why this is happening and/or doesn’t seem to care. When people and businesses flee from such a well-developed region with such a favorable climate, one should realize that something is probably very wrong. Here is a link to a comprehensive study of the flight of businesses and a million middle class people (net) since 2008 (PDF).
 

A clueless Glendale official is apparently unconcerned about the financial repercussions of Nestle’s departure saying that it was “no big deal” and saw it as an “opportunity,” whatever that means!
The stampede of businesses out of what was once the most productive and attractive region in all of North America demonstrates again that prosperity and individual freedom are best served in a political environment of decentralization.

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Donald and the Dollar

January 19, 2017
Donald and the Dollar

No Country Can be Made Great by Devaluation
John Connally, President Nixon’s Secretary of the Treasury, once remarked to the consternation of Europe’s financial elites over America’s inflationary monetary policy, that the dollar “is our currency, but your problem.”  Times have certainly changed and it now appears that the dollar has become an American problem.
 
Richard Nixon and his treasury secretary John Connally. The latter is today mainly remembered for his remark on the dollar, which presumably gave European finance ministers a few nightmares at the time. Nixon defaulted on the gold exchange standard in 1971, which effectively ended the Bretton Woods agreement and led to the whole world adopting a fiat money standard. Nixon’s announcement of the default stands to this day as a textbook example of government lies and hypocrisy, garnished with a more than generous helping of economic illiteracy. It seems unlikely that he realized that his actions on that day would give birth to the greatest credit bubble in history, but they did.
Photo via twitter.com
 

In a recent interview with the Wall Street Journal, the soon to be 45th President of the United States believes that the greenback’s strength – up some 25% against a broad basket of currencies since 2014 – is now “too strong,” “killing us,” and has hurt companies trying to compete overseas.

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Pope Francis Now International Monetary Guru

January 9, 2017
Pope Francis Now International Monetary Guru

Neo-Marxist Pope Francis Argues for Global Central Bank
As the new year dawns, it seems the current occupant of St. Peter’s Chair will take on a new function which is outside the purview of the office that the Divine Founder of his institution had clearly mandated.
 
Neo-Papist transmogrification. We highly recommend the economic thought of one of Francis’ storied predecessors, John Paul II, which we have written about on previous occasions. In “A Tale of Two Popes” and “Papal Eco-Hysteria”, we have contrasted Francis and John Paul II and quoted from the latter’s seminal encyclical “Centesimus Annus”, which probably contains the most clear-headed thinking on human liberty and economics that has ever emerged from the Vatican. Francis strikes us as a throwback to a completely discredited and dangerous ideology by comparison. Lately he is even calling for the establishment of a global central bank!
 

Besides being a self proclaimed expert on global warming and a vociferous advocate of societal-wrecking mass immigration, it looks as if Pope Francis has entered the realm of global economics specifically, international monetary policy.

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Fidel Castro and the American Empire

November 29, 2016
Fidel Castro and the American Empire

A Brutal Communist Dictator Shuffles Off This Mortal Coil
The death of the brutal Cuban Communist dictator Fidel Castro closes the door, in some respect, on another disastrous page in US foreign policy history.  For all the denunciations and criticism of Castro from conservative elements and exiled Cubans, his despotic rule was the outcome of decades of American imperialism which began with President William McKinley’s infamous decision to wage war on hapless Spain in 1898.
 
Fidel Castro, the long-time Marxist dictator of Cuba. Not surprisingly, he was another finger-wagger. When he graced the cover of TIME magazine in 1965, he was shown wagging his finger as well, a tradition he kept up until shortly before his demise (similar to many other communist rulers, he loved to give nigh interminable speeches, a special form of torture for those forced to sit through them and applaud at the appropriate moments). Castro replaced the Batista regime, also an oppressive and corrupt regime, but of the military junta type – which the US supported. Communists like Castro came to be widely seen as the vanguard in the fight against imperialism, especially among Western youth in the 1960s. Young people at the time were correct in opposing imperialism, but they were extremely naïve and misguided in their support of Marxism.

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Brahms & Democracy

November 17, 2016
Brahms & Democracy

A Monumental Work
In November of 1876, one hundred and forty years ago, Johannes Brahms’ monumental First Symphony was first heard, performed in Karlsruhe, Germany.  The much anticipated work – which took Brahms over 20 years to complete – has become part of the canon of Western music.  Ironically, the premiere of The Ring by Brahms’ supposed rival and fellow musical genius, Richard Wagner, was performed for the first time in the same year.

Brahms’ Symphony No. 1, in a 1981 performance by the Vienna Philharmonics Orchestra conducted by Leonard Bernstein.

While one critic initially called Brahms’ First Symphony “Beethoven’s Tenth,” it has surpassed that unjust description and now stands on its own merit as a distinct masterpiece.  The First Symphony, the three that followed, and the rest of Brahms’ works makes him more than Beethoven’s successor, a unique musical figure in his own right.
In one of his best newspaper articles, H.L. Mencken wrote the following about a Brahms’ performance:

My excuse for writing of the above gentleman is simply that I can think of nothing else.  A week or so ago,… I heard his sextet for strings, opus 18, and ever since then it has been sliding and pirouetting through my head.  I have gone to bed with it and I have got up with it.

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Pope Francis is at it Again

November 8, 2016

A Case of Bad Timing
As if there are not enough sufficient reasons for right thinking individuals to want a Donald Trump Presidency, one of the biggest is that it would be a direct and quite necessary rebuke and humiliation of the purported head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis.
 
Stone-thrower in the glass house: Pope Francis
 

Bergoglio has once again injected his neo-Marxist self into areas where he has no right to interfere.  Of course, this has never stopped this cretin from doing so before, especially when it comes to liberalistic causes such as climate change.   Whatever happened to popes that preached the Gospel, spoke of the saints, or expounded on doctrine?
In a speech given at the Vatican on November 5, Bergoglio spoke of not giving into those politicians who talk of building walls, but those who work to build bridges.  He condemned “physical and social walls” that “close in some and exclude others” and added: “mercy is the best antidote against fear” while it “is much more effective than walls, than barbed wire fences, than alarms and arms, and it is free.  It is a gift of God.

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It’s Still the Media, Stupid!

October 28, 2016

Weapons of Mass Deception – the Pravda Complex
The US Presidential campaign has demonstrated once again that the mainstream mass media is still the dominant force and arbitrator of political events and if it is successful in pushing the Wicked Witch of Chappaqua past the finish line this November, it may have achieved its greatest triumph.
 
A note by PT: We have decided to introduce a new term for the mainstream media in light of the astonishing “Gleichschaltung” of the Western press in recent years. The recent propaganda effort on behalf of Hillary Clinton against Donald Trump is the sad culmination of a trend that has been in train for many years. It is so blatant and brazen, that we will henceforth refer to the MSM as the “Pravda Complex”. Pravda is the Russian word for truth, and was the name of the former Soviet Union’s largest newspaper. Early in his career, Stalin was incidentally the Pravda’s editor. Most people in the Soviet Union were well aware that they were lied to, especially in the final two decades when the communist system entered its accelerated decay phase. Articles in newspapers such as the Pravda were widely ridiculed in private. The propaganda was rather obvious, simply because reality offered such a stark contrast to the glowing descriptions of the party’s achievements.

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Pope Francis: Traitor to Western Civilization

October 7, 2016

Disqualified
There has been no greater advocate of mass Muslim migration into Europe than the purported head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis.  At a recent conference, he urged that “asylum seekers” be accepted, “through the acts of mercy that promote their integration into the European context and beyond.”*
 
Before we let Antonius continue with his refreshingly politically incorrect disquisition, we want to remind readers of two previous articles that have appeared here on the topic of the current pope, one that contrasted Pope John Paul II’s deep understanding of economics and economic freedom with the muddled socialism of Pope Francis (see A Tale of Two Popes for the details) and our critique of Francis’ green-red encyclical Laudatio Si – Sulla Cura Della Casa Commune (see Papal Eco-Hysteria for the details on that one). Frankly, we have no idea what possessed the College of Cardinals when it picked him. Since when does the Church feel a need to pander to the left?
 

Jorge Bergoglio is the “purported pope” of the Catholic Church because, as certain theologians have argued, he was neither validly ordained as a priest or consecrated as a bishop in the traditional Catholic rites of Holy Orders.  Since a pope must first be a bishop, in particular the bishop of Rome, Bergoglio cannot, therefore, be pope.

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Donald’s Electoral Struggle

September 27, 2016

Wicked and Terrible
After touting her pro-labor union record, the Wicked Witch of Chappaqua rhetorically asked, “why am I not 50 points ahead?”  Her chief rival bluntly responded: “because you’re terrible.”*  No truer words have been uttered by any of the candidates about one of their opponents since the start of this extraordinary presidential campaign!
 
Electoral map (note that the coloration may no longer be applicable…)
 

That Hillary Clinton is even remotely competitive in the race despite her flagrant and undeniable corruption, numerous breaches of national security, a long incompetent and bungling political career, and the utter lack of any personal charm or charisma, points to ominous trends within the American electorate that if not checked will mean political futility for future challengers of the status quo and continued economic deterioration.
Simply put: Killary is in contention despite a mountain of negatives because the “dependency class” of the electorate has mushroomed to such an extent that anyone who seeks its reform is automatically at a disadvantage, while candidates, no matter how vile, who promise to keep the gravy train rolling or expand it, will remain viable.  This is the dilemma that Donald Trump faces.

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Donald and the “Maestro”

September 22, 2016

The Crazies
Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, who was once laudably referred to as “Maestro” for his supposed astute stewardship of U.S. monetary policy, commented last week on the nation’s current political and economic climate:
 
“We’re not in a stable equilibrium.  I hope we can all find a way out because this too great a country to be undermined, by how should I say it, crazies.”*
 
Help! The crazies are coming! And the Russians too, now that we think about it. Best hide under your desks!
 

Well, if there is anyone who knows how to “undermine” an economy, it is the Maestro, since it was his “crazed” policies that brought about the 2008 financial crisis which ushered in the Great Recession that continues to this very day.
In a demonstration of how truly clueless Greenspan is about economic conditions, he cautioned that the U.S. is “headed toward stagflation – a combination of weak demand and elevated inflation.”
Memo to the Maestro: stagflation is already here and has been for quite a while, especially when real economic gauges are used instead of the phony baloney numbers routinely lied about by the BLS and other corrupt state agencies.

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The Donald Versus Killary: War or Peace?

September 18, 2016

War: A Warning from the Past
Although history does not exactly repeat itself, it does provide parallels and sometimes quite ominous ones.  Such is the case with the current U.S. Presidential election and the one which occurred one hundred years earlier.
 
The Donald probably has the better slogan…
 

The dominating question which hung over the 1916 campaign was whether the country would remain neutral in regard to the horrific slaughter which was taking place on the European battlefields in probably the greatest act of mass insanity ever recorded, World War I.
President Wilson had maintained that the U.S. would continue a policy of strict neutrality.  By all indications, the nation wanted no part of the war, with the President’s own party at his nomination delivering an emphatic “No” to any foreign intervention.
Although Wilson maintained a neutral policy through the election and briefly afterward, his advisors and Cabinet had been lobbying for war and continued to do so even more vehemently after the President’s re-election was secured.
Nearly all of them, including Wilson himself, had deep financial, family, and political ties to J.P. Morgan.  Wilson received considerable Morgan financial backing for his two presidential runs.

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John Maynard Keynes’ General Theory Eighty Years Later

September 5, 2016

The “Scientific” Fig Leaf for Statism and Interventionism
To the economic and political detriment of the Western world and those economies beyond which have adopted its precepts, 2016 marks the eightieth anniversary of the publication of one of, if not, the most influential economics books ever penned, John Maynard Keynes’ The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money.
 
The mere fact that the book is lauded by TIME magazine on the cover should give everyone pause. We have taken it upon us to read this tome in its entirety, which proved to be quite a slog (the effects alternated between putting us to sleep and making us shake our head in wonderment as to how anyone familiar with economic theory could have taken this stuff seriously at the time of its publication). The idea was that in order to criticize an economic and political philosophy, one should know what it is actually about. That is by the way one of the many differences between us and Keynesians like Mr. Krugman, who occasionally publishes critical appraisals of Austrian economic theory, although he has evidently not read a single word of it. He has that in common with his hero Keynes, who according to Gottfried Haberler wrote a scathing review of Mises’ Theory of Money and Credit without having read it (!) – not exactly a display of intellectual honesty.

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A Date Which Will Live in Infamy

August 24, 2016

President Nixon’s Decision to Abandon the Gold Standard
Franklin Delano Roosevelt called the Japanese “surprise” attack on the U.S. occupied territory of Hawaii and its naval base Pearl Harbor, “A Date Which Will Live in Infamy.”  Similar words should be used for President Nixon’s draconian decision 45 years ago this month that removed America from the last vestiges of the gold standard.
 
Nixon points out where numerous evil speculators were suspected to be hiding. No, wait… actually, Nixon points to the black hole that has swallowed countless lives and a great deal of treasure under his and his predecessor’s watch – ultimately leading to the US default on the Bretton Woods gold exchange standard.
Photo credit: Richard Nixon Presidential Library
 

On August 15, 1971 in a televised address to the nation outlining a new economic policy entitled, “The Challenge of Peace,” Nixon instructed the Treasury Department “to take the action necessary to defend the dollar against  speculators.”*
Nixon continued:
 
“I have directed Secretary Connally to suspend temporarily the convertibility of the dollar into gold or other reserve assets, except in amounts and conditions determined to be in the interests of monetary stability and in the best interests of the United States.

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Don’t Expect a Return to a Gold Standard Any Time Soon

August 22, 2016

Lies and Distortions
Despite trillions of paper currency units poured into the world economies since the start of the financial crisis, there has been no recovery, in fact, all legitimate indicators have shown worsening conditions except, of course, for the pocketbooks of the politically – connected financial elites.
 
A comparison of average annual GDP growth in different time periods since 1949. The last bar shows Q2 2016, the one before it the time period 2009 – 2016. In this time period, the by far biggest fiscal and monetary stimulus of the entire post WW2 era was applied. Obviously, it hasn’t worked as advertised. Growth wasn’t so weak in spite of, but because of these policies (keep in mind that “measuring” aggregate growth in an inflationary system is even more flawed than it would otherwise be).
 

Yet, despite the utter failure of the current money and banking paradigm to resolve the situation, the chance of a return to a commodity based monetary order is highly unlikely especially when one looks at the anti-gold bias found in typical college economics textbooks.
Macroeconomics: Principles, Problems and Policies by McConnell, Brue and Flynn is a leading introductory level college text which has been through, to date, some 20 editions.

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Jailing Banksters Will Not Resolve the Economic Crisis

August 4, 2016

Meet the Scapegoats
Last week, an Irish court sentenced three prominent banksters for their roles in the 2008 financial crisis.  Judge Martin Nolan, who pronounced judgment, said that the bansksters had committed “a very serious crime.”  He continued:
 
“The public is entitled to rely on the probity of blue chip firms. If we can’t rely on the probity of these banks we lose all hope or trust in institutions.”*
 
Meet the scapegoats! Three Irish bankers sent to jail: former finance director at the failed Anglo Irish Bank, Willie McAteer (42 months); former Irish Life and Permanent Bank Chief Executive Denis Casey (33 months); and former head of capital markets at the Anglo Irish Bank, John Bowe (24 months). This may very well be a case of going to jail for stupidity. They were doing the bidding of regulators, in the erroneous belief that they wouldn’t throw them under the bus when push came to shove. The three had engaged in a scheme of pushing money around in circular fashion in order to make Anglo Irish Bank look healthier than it was. However, as the defense noted: they reacted to the what Irish regulators told them at the time, who demanded that “Irish banks support one another as the financial crisis worsened, in a program called the green jersey agenda.

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The Gold Standard: Friend of the Middle Class

July 7, 2016

A Morally and Economically Superior Monetary System
It has been theoretically demonstrated and seen in general practice that a monetary system of 100% metallic money devoid of central banking checks monetary inflation, prevents a general rise in the price level, and eliminates the dreaded business cycle while making all sorts of monetary mischief nearly impossible.
 
Sound money
 

A gold standard is not only economically superior to any paper money scheme, but is morally just, which is why it is hated by the politically well-connected, academics, politicians, and the rest of the Establishment.
Often not discussed, however, even by its proponents is the beneficial effect that “hard money” has for the middle class.
It is not a coincidence that since the U.S. left the last vestiges of the gold standard in 1971with President Nixon’s nefarious decision to no longer redeem international central bank payments in gold, real wages for Americans have stagnated.
Nixon’s decision to put the nation on an irredeemable paper money standard set it on a course of economic ruination, which is why he should have been hounded from office not for his role in the bungled, petty cover up at the Watergate.

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Long Live the Flags of Dixie!

June 1, 2016

House of Reprehensibles
On May 19, the House of Reprehensibles passed a proposal that would essentially ban the display of Confederate flags from national cemeteries.  The amendment was added to a Veteran Affairs spending bill.
 
Banned: confederate flag
Photo via natsentinel.com
 

Not surprisingly, House Speaker Paul Ryan allowed the measure to be voted upon in hopes of not disrupting the appropriations process.  Yes, by all means Paul, the redistribution of taxpayers’ confiscated wealth should take precedent over a draconian attempt to eradicate a heroic symbol of the country’s past.
Hopefully, Ryan will be ousted this November as both Speaker and Congressman for not only his consistent sell out to Obummer and the Democrats on the budget, but his lack of understanding and appreciation of what is arguably the most important period of American history.
 
What was the Secession About?
In a certain sense, the Confederate flag should not be displayed in national cemeteries or for that matter flown alongside those of the Union.  The two are representations of dramatically opposed political ideologies.  Liberals and political opportunists of all sorts have deliberately smeared the South’s attempt at secession as being entirely over the issue of slavery.
The “Civil War” (which that struggle has become known by) is now seen through Politically Correct hindsight.

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A Morally Sound Tax Reform Proposal

April 19, 2016

The Oppressed U.S. Taxpayer
This year, Americans’ day of tribute to their federal overlords falls on April 18.  As calculated by the Tax Foundation, the average American will work from January 1 to April 24 (Tax Freedom Day) to pay his share of taxes to all levels of government with some $3.3 trillion to be forked over to the federal government and $1.6 trillion to state and local jurisdictions. [1]
 
While any talk of tax cuts are verboten on the Democratic side of the presidential campaign, the remaining Republican contenders have offered their views on the matter suggesting a flat tax, reduction in corporate tax rates, and a call for the consolidation of the current tax bracket from seven to four. [2]
Image via forbes.com
 

Most of these and their variations have been trumpeted before and even if enacted would not permanently undo the crushing tax burden or prevent rates from escalating to even more confiscatory heights.
If real and lasting tax relief is ever going to come, a more fundamental alteration of tax policy needs to be taken, which has not been suggested by any of the presidential contenders, but had once been an integral part of the nation’s political thought.
One of America’s most neglected political theorists of the 19th century was South Carolina statesman John C. Calhoun, who wrote the important treatise, A Disquisition on Government.

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St. Thomas Aquinas – A Commemoration

March 8, 2016

Remembering a Saint and Profound Thinker
March 7th is the traditional feast day of one of the most important thinkers of Western Civilization, the Angelic Doctor, St. Thomas Aquinas (c.1225-1275).  Despite being referred to early in life as a “Dumb Ox,” St. Thomas would, nevertheless, profoundly shape the development of Western theology and philosophy.
 
St. Thomas Aquinas, a medieval theologian and philosopher of immense importance to Western civilization
Image via Wikimedia Commons / Author unknown
 

St. Thomas was instrumental for the reintroduction of Aristotle into Western thought and synthesized Greco-Roman natural law constructs with Christian Revelation to produce the mighty system which became known as “Thomism.”
The eminent saint’s importance in this regard cannot be understated as the late Murray Rothbard so aptly describes:
 
“For in reviving and building on Aristotle, St. Thomas introduced and established in the Christian world a philosophy of natural law, a philosophy, in which human reason is able to master the basic truths of the universe.  In the hands of Aquinas as in Aristotle, philosophy, with reason as its instrument of knowledge, became once again the queen of the sciences.”[1]
 
A prolific and multidimensional writer, St.

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Falling Oil Prices Not the Reason for U.S.’s Economic Woes

February 8, 2016

Why Should a Decline in Oil Prices be Bad?
The dramatic fall in the global price of oil is being cited by the financial press, government officials, and academia as the catalyst for the recent abysmal U.S. economic data which shows that the economy is, in all likelihood, sliding into a recession or worse.
 
Oil prices in dire straits…
 
While falling oil prices sound like a plausible explanation for the abysmal financial numbers, anyone with a modicum of economic sense (which excludes much of the financial Establishment) can see that it is merely a smokescreen to obfuscate the real culprit.
The fall in oil prices, while detrimental to many oil producers, should actually be a boon for the rest of the economy, especially those industries that are heavily reliant on energy. Lower fuel prices mean lower production costs leading to, ceteris paribus, greater output.
 
The price of gasoline has declined precipitously – click to enlarge.
 
For consumers, lower oil prices mean lower utility bills and cheaper gasoline, both of which mean more disposable income for either savings or more consumption. Why would greater disposable income lead to a recession?
Naturally, lower prices are not good for oil producers. But a decline in one sector of the economy (albeit an important one), does not lead to a general collapse.

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Another Constitutional Convention: An Idea Whose Time Has Not Come

February 5, 2016

Right for the Wrong Reasons
In the midst of the seemingly indeterminable presidential electoral campaign, some of the candidates have been asked about the possibility of convening a constitutional convention in the hope of addressing the nation’s most pressing issues, most ominously the gargantuan federal deficit now in excess of $18 trillion.
Governor John Kasich supports such a notion with the explicit purpose of passing a balanced budget amendment.
 
A famous painting by Junius Brutus Stearns depicting the signing of the US constitution.
 

Mark Meckler, president of Citizens for Self Governance, a leading group pushing the idea, believes that “If it starts to become a serious presidential issue, we could get it done in 2016.”*
Not all presidential contenders are on board with the idea. Senator Marco Rubio has expressed trepidation over the possibility of a convention for amending the current document fearful that it would lead to a total rewrite:
 
Just make sure that we know how it is going to turn out because if you open up the Constitution, you are also opening it up to people that want to re-examine the First Amendment, people that want to re-examine the Second Amendment, people that want to re-examine some other fundamental protect[ions] that are built into the Constitution.

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