November 8, 2010

The Banksters Literally Steal Our Food


At least since Malthus the flunkeys of the rich have blamed hunger under capitalism on the profligacy of the producers themselves, rather than the systematic theft of the food itself by parasites who play no role in producing it or anything else. The claim always boils down to there being “not enough food”. But the fact is that there’s always been enough food, and scarcity and hunger have always been artificially produced. This is intentionally endemic to “markets”, and is also the knock-on effect of speculative finance.
There is enough food, and it all belongs to the producers. This includes the markets for it, which should of course be as local as possible. No one who actually works advocates globalization.
We can see the truth of this wherever we look at how financialization has hijacked food markets. Starting with the 19th century crop lien system the bankster “markets” have always manipulated first the money supply and then the cycles of market pricing. The intended result was always that the farmer would have to go deeply into debt at the highest interest rate to commence the season’s planting, but could only sell at the lowest price at harvest time. Consolidation at all processing and distribution points has only increased since then.
The monetary manipulation continues to this day. Today the main vehicle is commodity speculation. Prior to 2000 commodity speculators couldn’t easily manipulate the price of food and fuel because pension funds were legally forestalled from such purely speculative bets. Goldman Sachs even used to advise buying commodities as a hedge precisely because their prices were uncorrelated with stock prices. They weren’t an “asset” targeted for manipulation in periods of a weak dollar.
That changed with the CFMA. Just as it legalized so many other forms of finance crime, the CFMA opened the floodgates to institutional “investment” in gambling on commodities. Now speculators had a potentially vast amount of capital they could induce into their attempts at manipulation of markets for food and fuel. We who actually use food and fuel became the hostages of this manipulation, the victims of these newly legalized crimes.  
Since the rates cuts which started in 2007, that is since the inception of the bank bailouts, the bankster money has flowed into the smaller oil energy and food markets. Under the Bailout, “quantitative easing” (QE) fuels this speculation. The taxpayer, including the farmer, provides the money for it. Or I should say the government steals our money and hands it over to finance gangsters and other corporate welfare patients who use it as a weapon against us.
After a brief collapse of the markets following he crash and subsequent phony stock rally, in 2010 the banksters have returned to wheat and corn in force, steadily driving up the prices since July 1st. Corn and soy are now at two-year highs, and short only of the last big speculation-driven spike in 2008.
With QE2 the Fed now wants to goose this process. By lowering mid-term rates, and thus lessening the spread between short and middle by which the banksters have been stealing free money from the people and then lending it back to us at a much higher rate, this will likely drive them out of Treasuries and further into commodities. The Fed apparently wants to further foster this speculation. It wants to drive up food and fuel prices for end users, thereby contradicting both its anti-inflation and pro-employment mandates. (It’ll probably also backstop the bets with default insurance and other less remarked upon features of the Bailout.)
(This is a metric for how overheated the stock market has become during its phony Bailout-financed rally. That the banksters ranged beyond stocks and again into commodities indicates that they believe stocks have been pumped as high as they can “reasonably”, i.e. under Bailout conditions, go. Wall Street expects that bubble can burst at any time. So they went off to inflate a new one elsewhere.) 
Meanwhile speculation-driven food crisis has been used as another opportunity for disaster capitalism. It’s the classic dynamic: The corporate predators create the problem, which forces a confused and often enraged reaction. The same criminals take advantage of the confusion and anger to push through policy change which benefits them and disadvantages the victims further. In this case the plan is to use the crisis, which is caused by the erosion of food sovereignty, to further destroy food sovereignty. Just as in the US corporate-caused food outbreaks are being used as the pretext for pro-corporate policy aggression under the guise of “food safety”, so the globalizers and many NGOs are demanding further globalization as the answer to globalization-driven food crisis. Thus the UN FAO has called for more regulation, and a better “global governance system”. We can probably expect more of the long-discredited calls for “freer” trade and greater industrial yield, although like every other feature of neoliberalism these are already proven failures at feeding the world’s people.
What’s really happening here? The real goal of all finance speculation is to use this funny money to buy up and dominate all the globe’s real assets. With direct commodity speculation, the parasites used hoarded wealth (stolen from the people via the Bailout) to drive up commodity prices, playing these markets like the stock market. This forces higher prices on the end consumers. But the farmer doesn’t get the benefit of these higher prices. Prior to the CFMA and the speculation explosion, the farmer was already mostly liquidated by corporate consolidation. Just like in every other sector, the autonomous producer has been driven out, reduced to a hired hand. Financialization softened the blow while it was taking place, through the mechanisms of cheap consumer debt and cheap consumer goods.
But now that the liquidation is largely complete, the freebie time is over. We’re hooked, and now it’s time to jack up the price. The global economy will continue its deflation while food and fuel prices will surge. We’ll now undergo full stagflation (“screwflation”, as the banksters themselves call it) even as the price of debt keeps rising. That’s how our indenture will proceed.
How are we going to fight back against this? First we need to propagate the basic ideas:
1. They are criminals.
Any animal with the power to resist understands its interest enough to respond with ferocity when another animal tries to steal its food.
So are we too stupid to understand what to do when the scavenger-predator speculator comes along? (The movie has Patton saying, “When you reach into a pile of goo that a minute ago was your best friend’s face, you’ll know what to do.” Do we?)
It’s weird how in any other context everyone knows how to identify a terrorist or a Mafia gangster, but I can read endless bland accounts of currencies “coming under attack”, and no one ever draws the obvious conclusion. It’s an inverse miracle of brainwashing Goebbels would envy.
2. What should be done? The first, reformist, goal would be to ban all speculation.
My earlier reference to the Fed’s dereliction regarding its “mandates” highlights how there’s no such thing as “the US economy”.
There’s the phony finance “economy” of Bernanke and his bankster masters, for whom this financialized pseudo-economy is the only meaningful economy, for whom asset inflation is the goal and rationale of all policy, and commodity inflation a nice side dish.
Then there’s the real economy of the real American people, and the real people of the world, who are purely the subjects and victims of these crimes and these criminals.
It’s obvious that the real economy doesn’t need the financial parasite appendage at all, and that we’d do much, much better if the finance sector ceased to exist.
So that’s what should be done on the reform level. Outlaw all speculation. We just need one big bucket law. That’s the one and only true derivatives regulation. (A public-interest government, if we could gain that, could administer legitimate hedging on the part of actual producers.)
Beyond that, we need land reform. Since the end of the fossil fuel age means we’ll need millions more small farmers, and we also need these as a social and spiritual imperative, it follows that we need sufficient land for them. Land being criminally hoarded and taken out of production will have to be redeemed.
Finally, we need fully relocalized economies of free, autonomous producers. These economies will trade on the basis of real demand, not of top-down globalist command economy fiat.
So the two tasks are:
1. How to educate for these?
2. How to organize and take action to achieve these goals?
Why seek such ends? So that the productive people, who do all the work and create all the wealth, can feed their children and heat their homes in peace, unassaulted by the verminous criminals who want these children to go hungry in the cold.


  1. Perhaps most folks already know this, but, even so, it doesn’t get mentioned often enough that ag subsidies socialize losses while allowing gains to be privatized and maximized. Ag subsidies vary in form but essentially they are a type of subsidized insurance. One of the 3 subsidy programs in the US is in fact crop insurance although it is more common for governments to provide price guarantees. Either way though, or in combination, subsidies minimize risk and this encourages speculation.

    Our financial services sector has its tentacles in just about everything. This though made possible by government. Not to suggest that ‘big government’ is the problem, conversely, the minimizing of risk through pooling could be a good thing, if of course the benefits were not being skimmed by investors etc. But ag subsidies, as they are being applied, are a type of ‘enabler’.

    To make matters worse, these subsidies have made large scale farming so profitable that land prices have risen artificially, and this has marginalized small farmers. Large scale farming has inherently more risk than smaller more diverse farms and so small farms have been declining for decades. Large farms do of course offer the advantage of economies of scale which would come with the inherent offset of increased risk and therefore increased borrowing costs, subsidies thereby alter this balance in favor of agri-business.

    It is maybe worth mentioning too that only 3% of the planet’s surface has highly fertile soil. So now speculators are also driving up the value of farmland more aggressively than in the past.

    Biochar could change all of this though.

    Comment by rayllove — November 8, 2010 @ 10:03 am

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