Negative interest rates have been on the cards for sometime and seem to be one of the solutions of Central Banks - who are themselves fundamentally flawed by insisting on interfering with the markets

Why is it that the banking system seems to constantly get away with ridiculous practices that would not be permitted in any other industry - whilst at the same time lining their own pockets with disproportionate salaries?

If zero/negative interest rates are the order of the day then they should apply to everything across the board and not selective areas. Should the banks choose to impose negative rates on credit balances the they also ought be subject themselves to the same interest rates when they lend out money - resulting in the fact that they should pay borrowers interest rather than charge them interest.

This would apply in paying interest to those who hold mortgages or overdrafts and the biggest disgrace of all are the interest rates charged by credit card companies which is bordering on usury at 25% plus, when the Bank of England rate is so low

Yet nothing seems to be done about credit card interest rates by the Government - why not?

However, at the same time nobody seems interested in putting a stop to the banking systems use of 'fractional reserve banking' - unless digital currency puts an end to this practice

All this would seem to be a push to do away with cash and replace it with a digital currency such as bitcoin and if this came to pass the current banking system as we know it would become superfluous. After all why would anyone hold money in the current system with the potential of a run on the banks or RBS scenario when it would be held in a new (revamped) style central bank

Unfortunately once this 'demise of cash' occurs, consumers could be 'forced' to spend a certain amount or otherwise incur penalties and far too much control then passes over to the Central Banks - to abuse their position at will

In the meantime, how do the Central Banks propose to deal with any future recessions under their current policies? After all, the present problem is too much global debt in one form or another and the Central Banks will have used up one of the tools in their armament by forcing down interest rates from sensible levels to levels that bear no relation to risk and will eventually become the new norm for a whole generation 

Making the 'fallout' from even a modest interest rate rise very considerable

Furthermore, what do Governments do when their entire ageing population comes knocking on their door because they cannot afford to live with 0% interest on their savings, which have become worthless?

And as for the farcical 'stress testing' for residual capital on the banks balance sheets after an 'adverse scenario' - whose money is it anyway on their balance sheets and if it were not for the bankers slight of hand, claiming clients money as their own would they even be in this situation in the first place? What about ring fencing client money in the first place rather than claiming it as their own?

Tags: , | Categories: Bank of England | UK Government | US Government

We need an explanation as to whether TRONOX KZN SANDS are complying fully with the law or have they started mining and construction before all the necessary authorisations are in hand, and before the environmental appeal process has been completed

If Tronox (previously Kerr-McGee Corporation - now liqudated) have begun the process without the necessary pre-requisites in place, what does the American Government propose to do about the situation; or is it deemed an acceptable approach to ride roughshod over the population of other countries where American interests are involved?

In the light of all the howls of indignation over the BP Gulf environmental situation one would have thought that the American Government should be rather sensitive to overall environmental issues and wish to set an example in these matters. Especially those where the actions of American Corporations could have an adverse impact on the quality of life of people in other countries; one needs to tread very carefully

Save Our Sands (SOS) Mtunzini Campaign

'.. Our objective is to get TRONOX KZN SANDS to do a full Scoping and Environmental Impact Assessment, something that the law requires for this scale of activity, but which Tronox has avoided up to now. We believe that only then will there be a transparent and comprehensive evaluation of the project, which will result in it either being stopped, or modified to be less destructive to the environment and amenities of Mtunzini and a wider Zululand ..'

Environmental Record

Tronox was established after the Kerr-McGee Corporation liquidated itself in the U.S. when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) claimed several million dollars from the company due to serious environmental offences. Kerr-McGee was convicted of polluting areas in 22 federal states with, among other things, radioactive waste. Some of this waste was dumped in the Colorado River.

The U.S. Department of Justice

Anadarko Fights Ailing Preacher in $25 Billion EPA Toxic Lawsuit

'.. The U.S. Department of Justice, in a lawsuit on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency and other environmental and state agencies, says Kerr-McGee fouled 2,772 sites, including Columbus, during seven decades of producing chemicals, fertilizer and plutonium pellets. The lawsuit, scheduled for trial beginning May 15, seeks $25 billion to clean up the toxins and compensate tort claimants -- or the people who say they’ve been personally harmed

Trouble is, Kerr-McGee no longer exists. It disappeared in a spinoff, a merger -- into Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (APC) -- and a bankruptcy, corporate maneuvers that have frustrated small-town residents across the country who say the pollution has ruined their health ..'

 

References

Mtunzini - The proposed TRONOX KZN SANDS Fairbreeze mine

Kerr-McGee

Tronox

Tags: | Categories: Environment | US Government

'.. The US Environmental Protection Agency said that it had temporarily blacklisted BP because of the company’s “lack of business integrity” ..'

'.. lack of business integrity ..' coming from a nation that has a whole catalogue of integrity issues and regards friends solely as 'business opportunities' - mmmmm !

Now bearing in mind that in some areas of Florida the fishing industry and other job sectors were on the wane at the time of the Gulf disaster it could have been regarded as an opportunity from heaven. How many false claims for losses were made in the aftermath of the Gulf spill - the odd $20,000 here or there to bolster the failing Florida economy in the light of Mr Obamas economic policies?

We know for certain that many such false claims were made by local Florida business of all types (from hospitality through to marine related businesses) where they had not actually suffered any loss. So what has the US Government done about investigating these fraudulent claims against BP - it would be fair to say NOTHING, because after all BP is regarded as fair game by the US authorities and in any case the majority of Americans erroneously believe that BP is a 'UK foreign company' and therefore expendable or available to be milked mercilessly.

So what price integrity?

Well it is about time that the UK reciprocated with these 'blacklisting' games. How about starting with CSC who, as we all recall, were involved with the disasterous NHS computerisation under the project name of Lorenzo as well as number of other projects

Why does the UK Government employ CSC (Computer-Sciences-Corporation) ?

Then we can move onto other areas such as the very one sided extradition laws where the rules applied to the UK are manifestly different to those applied for the USA

... and if we wish to go back a few years, simply look at midnight on 31 December 2006 when Britain finally paid off the last tranche of its multi-billion debt to the Americans from the end of the Second World War - see reference below

Regrettably all our experiences with the USA from history boil down to - '.. a cautionary tale tells us about our so-called 'special relationship' ..'

Essentially all the UK dealings with the USA are a very one sided arrangement in which the UK is invariably the looser

References

Times - BP blacklisted by America over disaster in Gulf of America

Mortgaged to the Yanks

BP Ownership Statistics - Shareholdings

Tags: | Categories: US Government

Of course no one will ever really know the truth of the matter, but the way the American extradition treaty operates leaves a bad taste surrounding the entire episode

Knowing nothing of charges against him, the first time Mr Tappin became aware of the situation was when the police arrested him at home in 2010

At this point, irrespective of guilt or innocence surely one has a right to know of the evidence being submitted in support of extradition?

Under the American approach the odds would seem to be stacked so heavily against Mr Tappin that the only sensible way forward is to plea bargain.

BUT IS THIS JUSTICE OR BLACKMAIL?

Either admit to guilt or have 30 years in prison with no parole & a penal fine wiping out all your assets.

The pressure is immense and even if one is completely innocent, there really is no other choice except an admission because it then becomes 36 months served in the UK with remission - so out in 18 months perhaps instead of being incarcerated for the rest of one's life; a simple choice!

Nevertheless, that still begs the question of being pre-judged behind closed doors and blackmailed into submission, by threats so draconian that the only sensible way forward is admission without trial

The treaty between the UK and USA

'.. Neither the treaty nor the European arrest warrant require the court to be presented with prima facie evidence of a crime ..'

Furthermore, before agreeing to extraditing anyone to the UK, the US requires '.. sufficient evidence to establish probable cause ..' whereas those in the UK are not afforded the same level of protection when the USA requests extradition. In other words a wholely one sided process, potentially to the detriment of those in the UK

Surely on this basis any UK national is subject to a US extradition request at any time without notice or evidence, irrespective of any wrong doing?

Tags: | Categories: US Government