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Your Vote Didn’t Count Last Tuesday

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Did you really think it was worth your time to vote last Tuesday? Oh, Republican partisans will of course say an unequivocal “yes” as their party “shellacked” the Democrats and in the process picked up several Senate seats, governors’ mansions, and control of the House of Representatives. But in actuality, within 24 hours of the Republicans’ coup d’état, all those Tea party voters and others who crave small government had their votes negated and their victory smashed.

How? To begin with, South Carolina Senator and Tea party kingmaker Jim DeMint admitted on John King’s State of the Nation on CNN that Republicans will support raising the debt ceiling currently at $14.3 trillion, but only if massive cuts are included with the vote. Ah, Senator, there is plenty to cut in the budget that will make raising the debt ceiling unnecessary. How about ending our quest for world empire by ending foreign occupations, closing down bases, and bringing our troops home? How about abolishing the Energy, Commerce, and Education departments for starters? How about rescinding the balance of Obama’s stimulus program and ending corporate welfare as we know it? Just these moves alone would save over a trillion dollars. If there ever was a time for Republicans to be gutsy it is now. They are riding a wave of voter anger unprecedented in our history. They have a mandate from those same voters to cut, eliminate, and abolish anything and everything in the way of a balanced budget. But within 24 hours of their mandate, DeMint is already cutting deals on federal spending.

Jim DeMint aside, the biggest negation of the voters’ wishes on Tuesday came on Wednesday. The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) of the Federal Reserve Bank announced that it would begin a new buying spree of between $600 and $900 billion of U.S. Treasury bonds over the next 10 months. This so-called quantitative easing is necessary according to the FOMC because, “…the pace of recovery in output and employment continues to be slow.” Thus the Fed must step in, purchase Treasury bonds from banks so the banks in turn can loan that liquidity to businesses to get the economy moving again.

You see, Congress and the president are not the only big spenders in Washington. The Federal Reserve also exercises the power to essentially spend our money through monetizing government debt. Thus, on the very day voters across the country were saying no more reckless spending and voting spendthrifts out of Congress, the unelected Fed usurped the people’s power by deciding to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to purchase Treasury bills from member banks.

Based on past experience, here is how the Fed’s spending spree will work. The Fed will create between $600 and $900 billion of liquidity (dollars) out of thin air. It will then use that liquidity to buy up massive amounts of Treasury bonds from the big banks. The banks are supposed to use the proceeds from the sales to make new loans and to get the economy moving again. Keep in mind that the Fed is about to do what it has already done in the not so distant past. Beginning in March of 2009, the Fed injected about $2 trillion into banks to buy up toxic assets. Precisely at that time, the S&P 500 stock index bottomed out after falling by 57 percent from its historic high. Since the Fed began that round of “quantitative easing” in March of 2009, the S&P has rebounded a remarkable 80 percent. With the economy still stuck in a deep sewer there is no reasonable explanation for the sudden, renewed health of the stock market except that Wall Street invested their Fed funds in themselves instead of in Main Street.

And that is what banks are going to do this time as well. It is bad enough that an unelected central bank has the power to print our money like crazy with no Congressional restrictions placed on it, but to give it to the big banks without any stipulations such as they must make loans or face penalties, is just plain criminal.

Look, our political and financial systems are corrupt and rigged. They make a Mafia bookmaker look honest. Think of it as a happy love triangle between Congress, the Fed, and Wall Street. To protect itself politically, Congress has contracted out management of our money supply to the Federal Reserve. In return, the Fed prints money out of thin air to support Congress’ deficit spending which ensures its high reelection rate. The Fed supports big banks by loaning them our money at very low rates. It bails them out when they don’t have enough reserves to meet obligations. It allows fractional reserve banking wherein banks are guaranteed solvency by the Fed even though they loan out up to 90 percent of deposits on their books. The final link in the cycle is the contributions given by Wall Street banks to members of Congress. We’ve heard DeMint, McConnell, Cantor, Boehner and other Republicans decry the deficit spending of Democrats but when have we ever heard them decry the Federal Reserve? Never. There is a good reason for this: the Fed is their meal ticket to reelection through the financing of deficit spending and campaign kickbacks from Wall Street.

This whole rigged system has been destroying our standard of living for decades. By adding more dollars to a low producing economy, the value of our currency will continue to deteriorate and prices will spike. Previous stimulus spending by Congress and quantitative easing by the Fed has already caused commodity prices to rise hugely in the last year: Agricultural raw materials up 24%, Industrial Inputs Index up 25%, Metals Price Index up 26%, coffee up 45%, barley up 32%, oranges up 35%, beef up 23%, pork up 68%, salmon up 30%, sugar up 24%, wool up 20%, cotton up 40%, and rubber: 62%. You get the idea. Imagine price increases after this next round of easing. But don’t worry, because the Fed’s member banks will know when to pull out of the stock market before it busts.

At the end of the day, if you voted for smaller, less expensive government last Tuesday, your vote was negated by the unelected economic central planners at the Federal Reserve. It took the FOMC just 48 hours in closed door meetings to undo what candidates across the country spent billions of dollars in the last year to achieve on election day. What a pity since you thought your vote was really worth your time.

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About Kenn Jacobine

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Things is, Kenn, the majority of voters like the status quo and are uncomfortable with the idea of things changing all that much. Elections are just an opportunity to punish elected officials (for offences real or imagined, and usually committed by somebody entirely unconnected to the poor sap you’re voting against). People don’t really believe all those idealistic, starry-eyed campaign promises.

    A political candidate’s basic job is to explain, more convincingly than his opponent, how he is going to make copious amounts of money move in the direction of your pockets. Sometimes the “spend and invest” argument sounds better to the voters; sometimes it’s “slash ‘n’ save” that appeals more. It all depends on what state of health the economy happens to be in at election time, and this is directly tied into the general feel-good factor.

    A lot of supposedly conservative voters would freak out if Congress actually did turn off the taps and start aborting federal programs left, right and centre as many of the new congresspersons boasted that they would.

  • Ruvy

    FINALY!! A voice of sanity and reality rising above all the din and BULLSHIT seen here over the so-called “massacre” of the Democrats. Leaving aside all the OTHER $trillions of funny money floating around, the Fed just added another $trillion to the pile to be sponged up.

    “This whole rigged system has been destroying our standard of living for decades. By adding more dollars to a low producing economy, the value of our currency will continue to deteriorate and prices will spike. Previous stimulus spending by Congress and quantitative easing by the Fed has already caused commodity prices to rise hugely in the last year: Agricultural raw materials up 24%, Industrial Inputs Index up 25%, Metals Price Index up 26%, coffee up 45%, barley up 32%, oranges up 35%, beef up 23%, pork up 68%, salmon up 30%, sugar up 24%, wool up 20%, cotton up 40%, and rubber: 62%. You get the idea. Imagine price increases after this next round of easing. But don’t worry, because the Fed’s member banks will know when to pull out of the stock market before it busts.

    At the end of the day, if you voted for smaller, less expensive government last Tuesday, your vote was negated by the unelected economic central planners at the Federal Reserve. It took the FOMC just 48 hours in closed door meetings to undo what candidates across the country spent billions of dollars in the last year to achieve on election day. What a pity since you thought your vote was really worth your time.”

    At least someone is still able to see with clear eyes – THE TRUTH.

  • Irvin F. Cohen

    Agreed with all concerned, the author, Dr. Dreadful and Ruvy.

    And of course now for my worthless two cent (that’s purposefully “cent” and not the grammatically correct “cents’ – you know that silly, unimportant thing called “agreement” and “number.” So, shut the fuck up already, what’s the goddamn point?)

    Sorry ’bout that, jess couldn’t help myself. The point is “cognitive dissonance” and “elitism.’ The one, that most Americans accept their own self-contradictions as to spending; and the other that we tolerate technocratic elites who have usurped our decision making responsibilities as to our macro finances and currency.

    Not good.

    However the more public apathy is combined with these monetary shenanigans of the elitists at the “Fed” the more that makes Ron Paul that much more attractive to me.

    I still believe we do not need to abolish the ‘fed’ entirely as in Cato’s dictum, Carthago delenda est (literally Carthage must be destroyed, and in Cato’s eyes, its populace killed out right and or sold into slavery, it’s buildings burned to the ground, and salt sprinkled over the ashes so nary a blade of grass should ever emanate from its evil soil ever again – that we must do with the departments of Education, Energy, the EPA and a whole host of other worthless, misbegotten agencies) but we do need to do something, perhaps put it in a straight jacket and throttle and strangle it just till it starts to turn blue, then revive it just enough to regulate and reform it.

    Well, that’s my worthless two “cent.”

  • John Caporale

    Damn, I just ran out of popcorn….

  • http://longwei2china.wordpress.com/ longwei2china

    Enjoyed your article and the comments so far. (BTW, on the BC homepage they currently seem to have a double u in Tuesday). So what you seem to be saying to me – since I am a wild-eyed Democrat – is that MY vote DID count? In politics, the straightest line between A and C is almost never through B. – Longwei

  • Kenn Jacobine

    longwei,

    Your vote counted more indeed. But, what I can’t understand is how more Democrats don’t get it that Federal Reserve inflationary policies hurt the most those your party at least claims it wants to help – the underclass?