Pyramid Comment

This journal takes an alternative view on current affairs and other subjects. The approach is likely to be contentious and is arguably speculative. The content of any article is also a reminder of the status of those affairs at that date. All comments have been disabled. Any and all unsolicited or unauthorised links are absolutely disavowed.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

David Bellamy

David Bellamy is a classic example of suffering the rubbishing of personal reputation and standing. The potentially influential opinion of an individual has been damaged for non-conformity to acceptable consensus (of the majority) and all the accepted dogma even if untrue (by the unthinking). Crude attempts at the psychological conditioning of opinion. Generally, people have a collective attitude and want to 'belong'. To be isolated can be uncomfortable and many find it better to conform and possibly be wrong than stand alone and be right. This demands standing firm in support of personal standards. Being resolute takes courage and considerable resistance to sustained attack. Being ostracised by presumed collusion of the media can never alter the truth (whatever in reality that may be).

Bellamy explains:

  • "My great sin is to not toe the line. When I started out as a university lecturer I spoke the truth and I would get torn to pieces. But afterwards people would clap me on the back and say 'Well done.' It was all in the spirit of debate. I always thought scientific study and democracy were pretty much the same thing - exploring new ideas and seeing which comes out best."
This sounds very much like private support, but public condemnation. Incredibly weak and cowardly. Collective toeing the line and pandering to dogma is rampant. The entire issue of Climate Change: The Convenient Lie concerns Global Warming and the dogma surrounding it. The growing doubt about Gore's 'theory' regarding Climate Change continues and the debate increases in temperature as scientists respond.

Paradoxical Scientist

David Bellamy does not and never did stand alone against the World. I for one stand alongside. I personally know of others who admire Dr. Bellamy as a scientist and for his principles.

Great stuff Dr. Bellamy.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Labour's Legacy

After 11 years of disaster creation syndrome (dcs), the exiting UQ (aka UK) Ltd Labour government predictably exacerbates today's major problem into another of tomorrow's disasters. This is the evolving legacy to be handed over to an incoming government, which will be blamed for the latest crisis, even though it did not directly create it. Labels. In times of financial meltdown, on a global scale, this present Labour government's attitude is to spend its way out of recession. That's impossible , but creates the illusion that all the problems have simply disappeared.
  • Another one of the illusionists many shabby tricks
  • The illusionist is in self-delusion by assuming that the audience is blind and stupid
Problems never, ever go away. To the delusional, they just seem to (temporarily) vanish. The reality is that all the problems are being effectively 'shelved' just to return, though much worse. Borrowed money by the debtor does not create solvency. Consider some of the individuals and other business concerns that have become bankrupt.
  • It has been the solution that many have used by borrowing on a credit card to pay off another earlier debt: dcs
  • The reality of any loan is that it is a crudely disguised debt and adds another link in the chain around the yoke wearer's neck
This country is 'led' by a prime minister who does not lead, but urges. An example of making noises and doing nothing and an example of Selling England By The Pound: provide the failed banks with £billions taxpayer debt so the banks can screw more money out of the 'rescuing' taxpayer. This does not demonstrate someone in control who could really do something useful, but what appears to be dcs. This country is leaderless and descending into the pit. It's cynical and perverse and is tantamount to killing the Golden Goose before it's laid any eggs.
  • The eldest brother meets a little gray man (the Disguised Helper) who begs a morsel to eat and a swallow of ale but is rebuffed, but later has an accident and is taken home. The second brother meets a similar fate though is generous with the little old man and is rewarded with a golden goose (the Fairy Gift).
  • With the goose under his arm, he heads for an inn, where, as soon as his back is turned, the innkeeper's daughter attempts to pluck just one of the feathers of pure gold, and is stuck fast. Her sister, coming to help her, is stuck fast too. And the youngest of the three, determined not to be left out of the riches, is stuck to the second. Any person who attempts to interfere is joined to the unwilling parade.
Of course, the real giveaway evidence is that in addition to 'removing' all debt and banking failures by landing the taxpayer with the grotesque debts of nationalisation, there are promised tax cuts. Obviously these can never materialise unless some other swingeing form of financing is dreamed up. The melt down is well on its way to continued melting until this virtual money is recognised as the vapour it really is. The mechanism of pyramid selling is effectively that used by the financial markets around the world. An original lender 'creates' more money from its outlay by each borrower subsequently re-lending to a further set of borrowers. This then goes on and on until someone (a consumer) eventually buys an item. In the process inflation is fuelled relentlessly as each unit (lender) within the growing pyramid takes its cut, but contributes nothing. It must never be forgotten that just lowering interest rates is not necessarily a good thing. It becomes a yoke. A time bomb. It all depends on whether it is as a consumer or lender. Borrowing today at low interest appears to be a good thing, but any borrower is alway at the mercy of the lender. Once the loans have been extended (taxpayers' money 'loaned' indefinitely to the banks), the interest will at some future date be raised. Those loans can then become very expensive providing the lending institutions with one of many golden eggs.
Cynical Cyclical Predictable
It's also fairly obvious that any business involved with selling property and this will include estate agents will do their best to ensure property prices increase as quickly as possible. Commissions are maximised. With interest rates being reduced and lending 'forced' it is not too much to visualise a return of another recession even before the current one is over. But a recession is never over and boom times don't exist. Illusion and more vapour. Boom times are funded on the back of credit and loans. The national debt is now measured by the £trillion:
£1,000,000,000,000 or £one thousand billion or £one million million or £one billion thousand
The entire globe is bankrupt. There is no money. Nothing. Labels

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Interest Merry-Go-Round

The banks reluctantly pass on an interest rate reduction (1.5%) suggesting that the good fortune afforded the 'bailed-out' banks, with public taxpayer money, is forwarded to potential borrowers. This will probably encourage borrowing as the illusion is that the good times are ahead.


Low interest loans are made to suck in the punters. When the banks' life-blood of interest has been applied in terms of 'affordability' (low rate of interest), the short term appears to benefit the borrower, but in the longer term it is reasonably predictable that the interest rate will rocket. After any money has been loaned and is, of course, considerably less than is repayable. Possibly in six months' time, yet inevitable. It's how the system functions.

According to the News of the World (Sunday newspaper) the bank (HBOS) is playing the old game of celebration for doing nothing. A £330,000 bash for staff when customers are suffering difficult times. Some companies do have a party, though only after 'profits' and shareholder dividends have been announced and after massive (alleged) profiteering.

It would seem reasonable to suppose the bank sees good times ahead. Today's 'cheap' (low startup interest) loan becoming the stranglehold of the failure-proofed and future-proofed banking system. That's been a message forcefully rammed home into the taxpayers' collective brain. Whatever happens, whatever incredible and amazing ineptness and lack of any real ability or capability, the banks will never be allowed to fail. It's the summit of cynicism and (almost) unbelievable crassness.

There will come a time in the history of most cars that spending good money to prop up a tired old car is bad economy. More frequent breaking-down requires more financial input to keep it going to just break down... again. Failed old cars can be scrapped. The financial system won't ever be scrapped even though it's beyond any possible repair. Keep propping it up with more and more expensive 'solutions' that can never work. The next failure is highly dependent on the previous failure(s). The holed colander just gets more holes and the leak becomes the flood.

Be mindful to remember that one country that has a good credit rating has low interest on its loans, so this country can lend (bail out) finance charging a much higher rate of interest than it pays back. The risk, of course, is that the 'bailed-out' country could default. In fact, probably will default. The expected payback simply defers the problem, whether it's paid or not. But this keeps the simmering melt-down at bay.

Update: 25.11.2010

The lunatics are still running Asylum Westminster, but it involves money (a nation's sovereign power to control).

Quantitative Easing

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Oil Profits: BP, Shell And Exxon Mobil

In concert with BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon Mobil have both reported record quarterly profits: 2008 - 3rd quarter BP = $10bn (3Q: $4bn in 2007) 2008 - 3rd quarter Shell = $10.9bn ($6.4bn in 2007 ) 2008 - 3rd quarter Exxon Mobil = $14.8bn ($9.41bn in 2007) This is based on the fluctuating price of oil. This 'fluctuation' can 'theoretically' be manipulated by ramping up or cutting production. As two separate companies, Shell and Exxon seem to be joined at the hip. Profits in 2005.
  • Coincidentally, BMW (Bavarian Motor Werks) posts a big loss for the same period. In the redistribution game of Winners And Losers, the oil company (Winner) achieves record profits as a procurer, but the user (car manufacturer) has a large trading deficit (Loser). The ultimate Loser is the product buyer and depreciation is another loss maker.
Shell claims to have benefited from higher oil and gas prices [linked and chained together in the UQ (aka UK)] and represents terribly bad luck (oxymoron): a real 'bummer'. Crude oil prices were more than 50% higher and gas realisations some 48% ahead of the same quarter last year (2007) and the concept of the windfall tax does nothing to correct any distortion between profiteering and fairness. British Gas - The Owner (Centrica) The government is the sole beneficiary from this occasional (unpredictable) and arbitrary tax, yet the prices (and profits) remain in place to the disadvantage of the consumer and make way for a future 'windfall' tax (predictable).
Shell (Chief Executive and Director, Jeroen van der Veer):
  • Steering the Shell ship through rough waters
  • Yes, we are generating large profits
  • Yes, we have the largest investment programme in Shell's history to create value for shareholders and to play our part in providing safe and cost competitive energy for consumers
This illustrates the hard times and treacherous journey Shell is experiencing. 'Large' profits benefit the shareholder ('value') who theoretically could also be a consumer, but is probably not. Certainly a (very small) minority only (of consumers) will be shareholders.
  • The large investment programme is mysteriously linked to "benefited from higher oil and gas prices"
  • Shell's bad luck is just doomed to continue.
The Shell strategy remains: "pay competitive and progressive dividends"
  • Winner = Shell
  • Loser = consumer
Peter Voser is currently Chief Finance Officer and Director and the probable future (summer 2009) Chief Executive:
  • The company is on track to reach its target
  • Asset sales of $5bn this year
  • 'Credit crunch' was curbing the number of buyers
  • No rush to sell assets
  • Not a fire sale
It seems Exxon Mobil is having a hard time too by benefiting from high prices of its crude oil: $162m a day or $113,000 a minute. And that's even with the disruption caused by hurricanes Gustav and Ike in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Exxon Mobil has maintained a strong financial position despite all the difficulties
It must be tough. Like trying to sell water to people in a hot desert

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Money Machine

Money cannot be created and obviously it does not constitute reality and perceived wealth. Wealth is generated only by possession and so to possess more is to increase wealth. But true wealth cannot be increased without a concomitant decrease elsewhere. Redistribution by repossession: Winners And Losers.

Oil companies are drowning in oceans of 'profit', but this profiteering comes from somewhere. To acquire a financial benefit, a sale has to be made to a buyer. Oil itself is just a dirty and very messy substance that only has potential to move money around once it has been converted into a volatile waste product: petrol, diesel or kerosine. The heavy fractions may lubricate the wheels of industry, but all oil derivatives lubricate the money machine. Exclusively.

Money laundering - cleaning the dirty oil

Paradoxically, the cynical trinity of alcohol, tobacco and oil are all gargantuan money makers and are totally destroyed in the process of becoming valuable. The consumer or user is responsible for the destruction and so the money makers get rid of that responsibility by simply moving it on to the end-user. In the global phenomenon of sustainable resources, these three constitute the absolute opposite.

Buying and Selling: originally, before money was invented, a bartering system would cause trade to occur between parties. When cash money began to be circulated (from the shadows of the very distant past), the owner of the source would have controlled the flow in totality. The Egyptians and Romans had coinage though nowadays all countries have a currency.

The perception is perpetuated today with the invention of interest, once cynically described as Just Compensation:

  • "...usury has always evoked the notion of money demanded in excess of what is owed on a loan, disrupting a relationship of equality between people, whereas interest was seen as referring to just compensation to the lender."
The concept of coinage (a system of metal currency) goes back to 560 BC (Croesus).