Thursday, November 13, 2008

The real crisis is on the horizon and may be approaching fast

We are begging to become punch drunk with the series of crises that keep hitting us.

To open up we were frightened by Bird Flu and intimated by people spouting Global Warming. But we were well off and could afford to indulge ourselves.

Then came the Northern Rock fiasco and the first run on a British Bank anyone can remember in their life times. We had seen news items about the sub-prime mortgage problems in the US, but didn't realise that a very large amount of international money had been removed from the UK markets and that the government (via the Gordon Brown created FSA) had allowed Northern Rock to reply on this for their business model.

But suddenly were told the problem was that banks weren't lending to each other - it was liquidity that was the problem. This was worrying since it was quitre clear that banks wouldn't lend to each other as each of them could see the road crash of their own finances and suspected the other banks were as bad. It was also only part of the truth. Money has been removed from t he system - one estimate is £625billion by investors - mostly foreign. ( It continues to strike me as odd that this just doesn't seem to feature on much of the reporting of the crisis - of course it has appeared occasionally or else how would I have found out about it - and the Chancellor has occasionally alluded to it in some of his interviews. But he has of course never been picked up on it. )

Then the bank shares fell - and it was all the fault of those city spivs the short sellers. Everyone from Vince Cable to Alex Salmond via various Labour types, and maybe even some Conservatives - I don't remember - blamed short selling of banks. So it was outlawed, but still the share prices fell. And shortly afterwards it was shown that the short sellers had been right and that they hadn't really had enough influence to cause the crash. More smoke blown in our eyes.

In the mean time Bradford and Bingley was nationalised and sold off in part ( that part that wasn't going to lose lots of money of course ! )

Next came Gordon Brown saviour of the financial universe, firstly having some strange influence of Lloyds TSB to take over HBOS, where changes in the law were an enticement. They firing vast quantities of our futures into these companies claiming that liquidity would return and borrowing would be back at 2007 levels. It hasn't and it isn't.

In the mean time Brown destroys an Icelandic bank in a day and smears its people as terrorists by using anti-terror legislation to freeze assets. But then, after making an enemy of the entire Icelandic nation and almost letting the Russians control the North Atlantic has to issue large loans to Iceland - so that local authorities can get their our money back.

Now Brown and Darling have decided that only a "Fiscal Stimulus" will save the day. That means even more borrowing than we already will have to do to maintain levels of spending to buy Labour the next election with tax revenues falling of a cliff.

But that's running into problems as whose going to lend money to a country that is increasingly looking like having no way to pay the bills for its expensive life style ( see public sector spending splurge and unaffordable public sector pensions ). Brown hopes to con other countries with savings to spending the money to help bail us out - he's at the G20 meeting trying to pull this off now. But it is doomed to fail.

Now the real wave of the recession is starting to hit. Companies are making ever increasingly large layoffs. Tax take is down, social security payments are up.

Gordon Brown is lying straight to peoples faces about national debt by excluding things that must be paid back, but that he's got off balance sheet in a wheeze of the type he was righteously condemning the banks for.

Thanks to the BBC Labour's poll ratings have been picking up - but it now relies on more than the electorate for the future by the owners of that £625billion I mentioned at the start. And the markets are saying sell UK plc. The pound is in a tailspin. There are two likely outcomes:

1) The money comes back but thanks to the falling exchange rate and falling shares vast amounts of our real economy will pass further into foreign ownership, leaving us paying dividends abroad for decades to come. Government debt will eventually have to mean far higher taxes - but only after Labour has secured another election - or as vengeance against the Conservatives who are having the country wrecked and ruined before their election.
2) The money doesn't come back and the country heads the way of Zimbabwe / Argentina.

The really frightening part of this tragedy is yet to come.

The reason things get worse rather than better - or even that the necessary measures that will be painful but must be taken haven't started is the Labour party. They have grown used to the patronage of being in power - the MPs salaries that few of their people could ever earn in the real world, the gold plated pensions, the power.

A whole new generation are to be taught the lesson on the 1970s of how Labour speak about helping people and generating jobs, but really just serve themselves and destroy the economy and spread poverty unemployment of economic disaster. ( Some of the hard left even desire these outcomes - and many current government ministers were members of that hard left in their youth.)

They are scum whose only thought is how to adjust the "narrative" to give themselves a few more days in power and the gravy flowing ( See Lord Mandymort and Sir Labour's favourite policeman £400k golden goodbye - even though he resigned ). And their BBC/Guardian co travellers are no better.

Right - glad to have got that off my chest ....

Update: See also Charles Moore in Saturday's Telegraph who makes some similar points.

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