Criminal Obama Demands Again: ‘No’ to Glass-Steagall Act
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—As his Saudi allies, using his precision weapons, were bombing 1,000 Yemeni civilians at a funeral Oct. 8, killing 200 or more, Barack Obama wrote a lengthy praise of himself in The Economist the same day, declaring again: Big banks are good, and I will not allow them to be broken up.
The Economist is the weekly publication of the City of London, for whose (and Wall Street’s) banks Obama has been an agent since his first G20 meeting there in April 2009. Then, Obama defended AIG and Goldman Sachs, etc., from the demand to prosecute their top executives, telling Americans that “some of what they did was immoral, but it was not illegal.” The big banks have been found guilty of dozens of blatantly illegal acts since then! But no senior executive has gone to prison, thanks to Obama’s defense of their power over Congress and the law.
Obama claims a legacy of “economic recovery,” when drug addictions and suicides are at unprecedented levels in America and death rates are rising for large parts of the population in their prime working years. He claims “recovery” when he has destroyed the productivity growth of our workforce for years, eliminating NASA’s manned space exploration, shutting down fusion energy, and technology development.
Obama claims the Peace Prize, when he has thrown U.S. forces into more wars than any other President in history and killed thousands of unknowns by drone warfare.
He and his diplomats rant against Russian President Putin’s successful intervention against al-Qaeda and ISIS terrorist forces in Syria; they talk about provoking war with Russia. Meanwhile Obama himself has insisted on arming and aiding Saudi Arabia’s unprovoked invasion and near genocidal attack on the people of Yemen.
This is a president who has just been defeated by Congress and the American people on the issue of Saudi-British support for terrorism. He was compelled to declassify the “28 pages” on the Saudi role in the 9/11 attacks; Congress massively overrode his attempted veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act.
Obama is not out yet, but he should be. A president of such crimes should not be able to order the American people, “Do not break up the Wall Street banks.”
Only an imbecile would fail to see how close we are to financial meltdown, and to war with Russia or China. What the United States does now is central to saving humanity. Glass-Steagall must be adopted in the United States, and copied with Europe’s basket-case big banks. Otherwise, credit for productive employment, revived economic growth, rising productivity is not possible.
The time for a second, more important defeat of Obama is now.
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
Obama in The Economist: Big Banks Are Good
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—Pledging his allegiance to the dying trans-Atlantic financial system, this week President Barack Obama was given the feature spot in the British financial empire’s flagship publication, The Economist, in a piece titled, “The Way Ahead.”
In what Her Majesty’s publicizers describe as, “a serious and thoughtful attempt to assess America’s economic strengths and weaknesses,” the empire’s agent shows his determination to ride the sinking ship into the rocks—and that you should stop complaining and rather learn to enjoy the ride.
While acknowledging from the start that it is economic disparity which is at the heart of the polarized—to the point of dysfunctionality—political horizon, Obama is most anxious to convince the citizen to think small, and to not try to tinker with what is, in reality, “an enormously complicated mechanism.” Without mentioning them explicitly, then, come attacks on Glass-Steagall, defense of the Dodd-Frank Act, Obamacare, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He condemns the revolt against globalization manifest in the United States.
Most important, he writes, is to understand that “the profit motive can be a powerful force for the common good,” and that it shouldn’t be destroyed, rather simply tamed. “As appealing as some more radical reforms can sound in the abstract—breaking up all the biggest banks or erecting prohibitively steep tariffs on imports—the economy is not an abstract. It cannot simply be redesigned wholesale and put back together again without real consequences for real people.”
It is certain that putting top bankers in jail is a “consequence for real people” which Obama has been working to avoid for eight years; therefore he opposes restoring the Glass-Steagall Act (“breaking up all the biggest banks”) as a wholesale redesign which must be prevented.
Better than trying to bake a larger pie, is his approach—which he demonstrates with oversize graphics—that of seeking ways in which to nibble off a larger bit of the existing pie for oneself. Chastising all nay-sayers, he says they should be “building on what we have already done, not undoing it”!
The would-be Ozymandias ends by placing himself in the pantheon: quoting Abraham Lincoln, and claiming that his “stimulus” program was “larger and more front-loaded than even President Roosevelt’s New Deal.” Reality, however, is that total U.S. economic growth during Obama’s two terms—roughly 11%—was equalled ineach of FDR’s first three years as President. FDR launched the “golden age of American productivity” (annual productivity growth averaged 3% through JFK’s 1960s), while labor productivity growth through Obama’s presidency has averaged roughly one-half of 1% annually.
Kotegawa: Pass Glass-Steagall, Jail the Bank Criminals, To Break Bankers’ Control of Government
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—Daisuke Kotegawa, the Japanese economist largely responsible for resolving the Japanese banking crisis in the late 1990s, and Japan’s Executive Director at the IMF 2007-10, said in an interview with EIR Saturday that if the Western nations are to survive the current breakdown of their financial system, they must divide the banks in a Glass-Steagall manner, and must arrest the bankers responsible for bankrupting the financial system.
Japan imprisoned several dozen bankers at the time of their crisis, while the United States arrested no one after the Lehman shock of 2008, Mr. Kotegawa stressed. He said the imprisonment of the bankers was necessary to win the confidence of the population that the cost of restructuring the banks would not lead to the same crisis occurring down the road, and thus they would have confidence in the banking system.
And, the arrests were broke the power of the banks over the government, especially the parliament. While Kotegawa did not spell it out, it was clear that he was aware that the failure of the U.S. and Europe to either impose bank separation, or arrest the criminals responsible, has resulted in the repeat of the bubble process, and the near-total control over the governments by Wall Street and the City of London banks.
Productive companies, he said, cannot go bankrupt overnight, since they have a productive base to deal with financial problems over time. Not so with banks. If a bank, or a banking system, loses confidence, the entire edifice can collapse overnight, Kotegawa emphasized. This is what is happening with Deutsche Bank.
He repeated his earlier proposal for dealing with Deutsche Bank: full or partial nationalization; immediate bank separation between the commercial banking sectors and the investment banking sectors; and the arrest of the responsible bankers. At the same time, he said, the authorities of all the Western nations must jointly, and secretly, set a date positive for the settlement of the massive derivatives exposure of Deutsche Bank. The counterparties of these derivatives, he said—which include every major U.S. and European bank—must be prepared to impose the same Glass-Steagall separation on their banks, or they will be dragged down by the collapse of the investment banking portion of Deutsche Bank.
Kotegawa added that the role of the advanced sector at that point is to address the huge gap in the developing world between the standard of living and the aspirations of their populations. Any solution to the Western bank crisis depends on real demand for products—not the printing of money—which will come from a commitment to the real development of the world as a whole. He noted that historically the key innovations in production were centered in the United States, Germany and Japan, and these three nations must restore that dedication to innovation and production.
Bernie Sanders Reaffirms Primacy of Glass-Steagall
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—In response to the opportunistic exposure of the uninspiring quips of Hillary Clinton when she was earning big honoraria from the Gods of Wall Street, Bernie Sanders doubled down on the fundamental issue at hand: Glass-Steagall reform.
In a brief statement released yesterday, Sanders said, “Whatever Secretary Clinton may or may not have said behind closed doors on Wall Street, I am determined to implement the agenda of the Democratic Party platform which was agreed upon by her campaign. Among other things, that agenda calls for breaking up the largest financial institutions in this country, re-establishing Glass-Steagall, and prosecuting those many Wall Street CEOs who engaged in illegal behavior.”
‘Qatar Option’ for Deutsche Bank: More Casino Insanity
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—Rumors about a “Qatar option” to allegedly consolidate Deutsche Bank are corroborated by a report in this week’sDer Spiegel, saying that the sheikhdom of Qatar is considering ganging up with other sovereign state funds to acquire 25% of the bank—on the condition that it then fully concentrates on investment banking, as the alleged road to more profit. CEOs John Cryan and Chairman Paul Achleitner would be fired, perhaps along with other top officials of the bank, and the entire deal would have the OK from the German Finance Ministry. The latter told Spiegel that it has “no problem with Qatar,” and that the bank is “no longer German anyway;” therefore international investors were “welcome.”
The deal would spare the German government pouring taxpayer money into Deutsche Bank, which Chancellor Merkel and Finance Minister Schäuble want to avoid because of the national elections in one year, faced with a broad discontent among the electorate over the bank’s conduct.
Presented with this report, Lyndon LaRouche denounced this deal as a “swindle,” “fraud,” and “danger of whole nations being driven into ruin,” and as being evil. The German Finance Minister was acting for the British Empire, LaRouche said, against the interest of Germany and many other nations.
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
State Department Warned of U.S. Complicity in Saudi War Crimes
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—According to an exclusive report in Reuters, based on background interviews and documents acquired through Freedom of Information Act requests, State Department officials warned, during the October 2015-January 2016 time period, that American arms sales to Saudi Arabia could implicate the U.S. in Saudi war crimes. State Department officials also were privately skeptical of the Saudi military’s ability to target Houthi militants without killing civilians and destroying “critical infrastructure” needed for Yemen to recover, Reuters reports.
U.S. government lawyers ultimately did not reach a conclusion on whether U.S. support for the campaign would make the United States a “co-belligerent” in the war under international law; Obama went ahead with the arms sale that was then being contemplated, a $1.29 billion deal for air-dropped munitions. This, despite the fact that a ruling in the 2013 war crimes trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor concluded that “practical assistance, encouragement or moral support” is sufficient to determine liability for war crimes. The United States then sought to use this ruling in the trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attacks. Now Obama may see it used against Americans.
An article posted on Oct. 8 in the Huffington Post reports that President Obama could stop the slaughter in Yemen “within hours,” by denying U.S. Air Force air refueling support and supplies of munitions to the Saudis. “Obama could single-handedly cause a major drop in the bloodshed, experts say. He simply doesn’t seem to want to do it.”
The fact that Obama has allowed this and other support to continue to be provided to the Saudis, despite warnings from his own State Department of the risk of U.S. complicity in Saudi war crimes, makes him knowingly complicit.
Obama Launches Biggest U.S.-South Korea Military Exercise Ever
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—As Obama and his Defense Secretary Ash Carter mount military mobilizations along Russia’s and China’s borders, and gear up nuclear weapons modernization for “first use” attacks, Obama today launched “Invincible Spirit 2016,” the largest naval military exercise with South Korea in the history of their postwar relations. The scope of the exercise makes clear that the target is not only North Korea, as they claim, but also China. The exercise will take place along the entire length of the coast of South Korea for the very first time, in both the Yellow Sea and the Sea of Japan, according to the news agency Yonhap.
The six-day exercise, as reported by Yonhap, includes: the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan: the destroyers Curtis Wilbur, John S. McCain, Fitzgerald, Stethem, and Barry; Ticonderoga-class Aegis missile cruisers; P-3 and P-8 maritime patrol aircraft; Apache helicopters; and FA-18C Hornet fighter jets.
Meanwhile, Obama rejected a petition from 100,000 South Koreans requesting the rescission of the decision to deploy the THAAD missile defense system in the South. The petition called the deployment of THAAD a “controversial move that will … escalate tension in the region, by provoking North Korea, China and Russia into a spiraling arms race in the region that is already heavily militarized with weapons of mass destruction.”
The response from the White House lied that it is only aimed at North Korea.
In Seoul, former opposition party leader Moon Jae-in, who is a likely opposition candidate for President in next year’s election, called on the American and South Korean governments to postpone THAAD and engage with Pyongyang diplomatically—a call rejected by the Park Geun-hye government.
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
Kansas Cattlemen’s Directors Issue Support for Glass-Steagall, Will Take It to State Convention
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—The Board of Directors of the Kansas Cattlemen’s Association, in a press release today on the upcoming KCA annual state convention at the end of October, issued its support for reinstating Glass-Steagall. The KCA Board reported that its 18th annual convention will be Oct. 28 and 29, and in giving the agenda of presentations, reported that, “KCA Supports the Passage of the 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act (S.1709, H.Res.3054).”
Today’s release further states that there will be discussion of Glass-Steagall at the convention. “Mr. Bob Baker [of Executive Intelligence Review News Service] will provide an overview of the [Glass-Steagall] bills, an economic update, and will be on hand throughout the convention to discuss Glass-Steagall and other economic conditions facing the world economic outlook.”
In the monthly KCA newsletter, Baker has been presenting need-to-know developments and policy priorities, in a guest column series titled, “Hey, America, Beef Up!” The series has focussed on Glass-Steagall/BRICS/American System economic dynamics. The latest installment reported in detail on the new paradigm shown by the Chinese One Belt, One Road initiative and presented at the G20: the principle of a “win-win” policy approach for worldwide development.
Kansas is the third-ranking state for beef production in the United States, which, along with dairy and other agriculture activity, is operating below cost-of-production and in crisis. In his monthly, “Message from the President,” KCA head John Ney stressed the fact that “Prices for cattle are below the cost of production.” He rhetorically asked, “Can you hear me now?” After listing the impossibly low prices cattlemen are getting for their livestock: (per hundred pounds) Calves—$165; Feeder cattle—$133; Fat (Finished) Cattle $110; Cull Cows—$75. Ney ended his message to KCA members by quoting President Dwight Eisenhower, “Agriculture is easy when your pencil is your plow, and your corn field is 1,000 miles away.”
Philippine Defense Secretary: No More Joint U.S.-Philippines Patrols in the South China Sea
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—Philippines Secretary of Defense Delfin Lorenzana made official today that all further joint patrols between the U.S. and the Philippines are now suspended, as President Rodrigo Duterte had earlier indicated, according to the Wall Street Journal. He also said that Duterte’s call for the over 100 U.S. special forces troops in Mindanao, running drones and providing intelligence to the Philippine army in fighting terrorism, will not be asked to leave until the Philippines has its own drone capacity.
That is not likely to come from the U.S., however. General Lorenzana noted that, since the mutual defense treaty was signed in 1951, the U.S. had only provided the Philippine military with “hand-me-downs.”
Also today, the ongoing U.S.-Philippines military exercise, which Duterte has declared would be the last, was declared finished one day earlier than planned.
SCIENCE AND INFRASTRUCTURE
China’s Campaign To Educate the Public on 2020 Mars Mission
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—China has invited 11 well-known Chinese public “celebrities” to be “Mars Ambassadors,” reports today’s People’s Daily. The purpose is to “raise the public’s awareness” of China’s lunar and Mars exploration projects, and encourage young people to study science, the paper reports.
One of their tasks will be to increase interest in the solicitation that has been made for people to suggest names and logos for China’s 2020 first mission to Mars.
The most well-known new ambassador is Shanghai-born, and impressively tall, 7’6”, basketball star Yao Ming, who played in the United States for the Houston Rockets team for nine years. He was very popular in the United States, and is a well-known public figure in China. China’s “Three Tenors,” Wei Song, Mo Hualun, and Dai Yuqiang, have also been invited, among others.
The coverage in Britain’s Daily Mail makes the incredibly stupid comment at the end, that “The Outer Space Treaty prohibits any nation from claiming sovereignty of outer space, so that means that the term ‘Ambassador to Mars’ has no standing”—as if grabbing a piece of the red planet were the purpose of the initiative.
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
India May Propose BRICS Fund To Rebuild Syria at Oct. 15-16 Summit
Oct. 10 (EIRNS)—According to unnamed sources cited by the New Indian Express on Oct. 8, India is planning to propose a BRICS fund for the reconstruction of war-devastated Syria at the upcoming BRICS Summit in Goa Oct. 15-16. The adoption of the proposal would depend on the cooperation of the member-states, the newspaper said, writing, “Last year when the five countries established the New Development Bank, it showed willingness to pool together resources to provide reconstruction aid to Syria and other war-torn countries across the world.”
Last March, at the Raisina Dialogue forum, hosted by India’s Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi, Schiller Institute founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche, in her address, had urged India to help rebuild Syria, wracked by years of war.
Last August, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had sent Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar to Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan, which trip was considered India’s first major outreach to the region since the conflict began in 2011, reported New Indian Express. During the trip, Akbar met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who told Akbar that Syria wants India to play a greater role in Syria’s reconstruction.
Till now, India has done little more than opposing the Western powers’ demand to oust the Assad government. The proposal to set up a fund within the BRICS to reconstruct Syria would change that and could start a process that would provide hope to the war-ravaged Syrians.
The newspaper reported UN estimates that call for raising $5.5 billion a year to help Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon, Turkey and Egypt to overcome the damages they have incurred due to the Syrian conflict. However, the international community has so far succeeded in meeting a little more than one-fifth of that amount.