Oil Shocks and Greater Power for the Federal Reserve
How do you keep power when you cede the political ground?
By holding the financial controls over a country's economy.
Think it couldn't happen here? -- have you looked at what the Federal Reserve has been up to lately?
Naomi Klein gives one example of how it can happen when the population is not astute to financial shell game. In her Shock Doctrine, Klein tells the story of South Africa and how the ANC basically won the government but lost all power.
Without knowing what they were doing, the ANC gave up control over the central bank: "If the central bank (in South Africa called the Reserve Bank) was run separately from the rest of the country, it could restrict the ANC's ability to keep the promises" it had long made to the African population:
Besides, if the central bank was not accountable to the ANC government, to whom, exactly, would it be accountable? THe IMF? The Johannesburg Stock Exchange? Obviously the National Party was trying to find a backdoor way to hold on to power even after it lost the elections.
'They never freed us. They only took the chain from around our neck and put it on our ankles.' Yasmin Sooka, a prominent South African human rights activist, told me that the transition 'was business saying, 'We'll keep everything and you [the ANC] will rule in name....You can have political power, you can have the facade of governing, but the real governance will take place somewhere else.' 256-7
Klein's premise, is of course, that shocks such as coups, hurricanes, terrorist attacks, hyperinflation (such as a sudden horrific increase in the price of oil) soften the populace to seek and support anyone who seems to have a solution. Please, give yourself plenary powers, Mr. President, just protect us from the terrorists.
Or, more currently, Please, Mr. Bernanke, Plunge Protection Team and the Federal Reserve, give your self plenary powers over our economy, just do whatever you need to do to protect us from the credit crisis, the oil shocks, the subprime mess.
As the populace is in shock -- the neoliberals slam through reforms that essentially rob that very populace of their government's ability to regulate and oversee -- to keep the speculators from sucking all the money and assets out of a country and its people and then depositing it in numbered Swiss bank accounts.
So here today in America, we're having our own little economic coup.
Oil Prices Rise / Credit Crisis / Sub Prime Mess!
Just give the Federal Reserve more power and all will be safe.
... safe, that is, for the very wealthiest 1% who clutch their gucci bags and munch their godiva chocolates.
If you don't think that something as staid and stuffy as the central bank could have such power -- check out this little find from Avahome:
How Does the Fed Affect You?:
... the Fed directly affects your stock and bond mutual funds and your loan rates. By having such an influence on the economy, the Fed also indirectly affects your home's value and even the possibility that you may get laid off.
Keep your eyes peeled for anything that "privatizes" institutions paid for with our tax dollars. Watch for major corporations who hold huge US taxpayer dollar funded contracts to move their headquarters out of the country ( perhaps even joining Haliburton with its corporate headquarters in Dubai).
As my Better Half has been saying: "Look out Martha, they're loading the gold onto Airforce One."
There's no extradition from Paraquay.