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Pray For the Catholics of Iraq and Syria

Pray for the Catholics of Iraq and Syria, that they may keep their faith and their heads.

 

 

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Socialist Fails to Recognise Unintended Consequences (as per)

Once again, a socialist’s demand that something is done NOW to fix an obvious iniquity has created unintended consequences that are worse than the inequality he sought to fix.

While he was energy minister under the economic colossus that was Gordon Brown, Ed Miliband was delighted to pass sundry laws against carbon, so that Gaia could heal “and the world would live as one”. As was pointed out innumerable times prior to his setting the country on the path to a carbon-free utopia, discouraging the use of energy by making its cost beyond the means of normal people (i.e. those in the private sector without unions to hold the Treasury to ransom) would lead to hardship – a cost of living crisis, to coin a phrase.

Here we are four years later and the cost of living crisis is upon us, and can Miliband recognise his own hand in the obscenity that is the UK energy market? Of course not. If socialist cause and real world effect are separated by a night’s sleep, no socialist will acknowledge his own hand in the consequences of his actions.

What’s worse, in playing to the gallery by threatening a price fix should Labour get in to power, along comes another unintended but wholly predictable consequence. Sometime after May 2015, Miliband said, gas prices would be fixed for two years (down to 18 months now), so naturally the energy companies got their retaliation in first by raising prices 18 months in advance (the first of two or three probably). Thus, going into Labour’s 18 months of the people’s energy we are to be gouged, but after that halcyon period there will be a period of brutal catch-up and we’ll be gouged again.

It is supremely ironic that socialists, who seek to plan everything, are incapable of planning anything because their operating time frame is that of a goldfish. Once again, the planners are ignorant of the consequences of their actions. Their psychological pathology means they demand gratification immediately while it simultaneously prevents them from acknowledging that their actions were the cause of the misery in the first place. And so they blunder on. Obviously some socialists are psychos and are only in it for the pain.

Capitalism in Detroit – Now You See It, Now You Don’t

The city of Detroit is trying to file for bankruptcy (the judge won’t let it), having collapsed owing $20 billion to about 100,000 creditors and of course all the public sector jobs that the city supports will either be gone or be re-negotiated on much worse terms. See this report on zerohedge.com for a few facts: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-07-21/25-facts-about-fall-detroit-will-leave-you-shaking-your-head

Detroit has been a by-word for decades for inner city decay (RoboCop was made in 1987) when it was already beyond redemption. Socialists, e.g. The Guardian and The Independent, blame the city’s collapse on “white flight” because white workers refused to meet an ever-growing welfare state, and the loss of high paying manufacturing jobs in the 70s, when the Motor City became the poster child for offshoring manufacturing. The Motown sound and the giant sucking sound were both heard first in Detroit, a couple of decades apart.

Capitalists, e.g. The Telegraph, promote the idea that Detroit suffers from too much state and not enough capitalism. It is just a matter of cutting back public services and letting ten thousand private sector businesses bloom in order for prosperity to be restored.

Of course, as always both capitalists and socialists are wrong. Detroit had its capitalist phase when it produced cars for America and then armaments for WWII, when sharecroppers were “bussed-in” from Alabama and Mississippi. Compelling people of very different cultures and morality to live together has never and will never lead to a melting pot – it always becomes a crucible.

Capitalism offered two generations of labour a decent standard of living, until the capitalists realised it was practical (thanks to Asian mercantilism) to increase their profits by using a cheaper labour source. To avoid protests (at least on a large scale) high paying manufacturing jobs had to be substituted with seemingly high paying service jobs, and thus the financialization of the West began. In the decades since the offshoring revolution, capitalists’ knowledge of the science of offshoring has increased to the point where even low-end clerical work can be and is being offshored. When the service must be delivered locally, e.g. health care or hospitality and catering services, the cheap labour is brought onshore. Immigration is where the interests of capitalists overlap with the interests of socialists – the former want a cheap, compliant workforce and the latter need large numbers of immigrants to justify razing the West’s Christian (really it’s Catholic) culture to the ground.

As the capitalists were extracting maximum value from Detroit, the reaction came from organised labour, inspired by the satanist Saul Alinsky. Predictably, the reactionaries did not fight capitalism head-on, but used its malign effects as a justification to plunder exactly the same people whose labour was being expropriated. Needless to say, those who could go, left a long time ago and those who stayed had to adapt themselves to the new immorality, of whom Eminem is an exemplar.

Detroit is another, bigger canary in the coalmine of the West’s collapse. Western labour is being pulverized between the millstones of capitalism’s low wages and socialism’s high taxes. And cut adrift from Catholic social teaching, even very few Catholics can see the injustices being perpetrated on us and our posterity. Because capitalism seems to offer choice it can survive longer than socialism, but only the trajectory is different. The terminus is the same. With the debauching of currencies continuing apace and leverage levels still unsupportable, the economy is going to take another lurch down, causing a commensurate drop in living standards, that will not be recovered. We are all living in Detroit because we don’t know how else to live.

Invisible Hand Destroyed Bangladeshi Factory

The “invisible hand” that Adam Smith, celebrated Whig economist, said kept the economy producing the right products, in the right amounts, at the right prices, is the same invisible hand that demolished the Bangladeshi sweat shop last month. According to NBCnews.com the death toll is over 1,127 and they are still digging remains (mostly women) from the rubble.

The 10 minutes of indignation in the West have passed and the story has been dropped. However, we were never in a position to boycott the retailers who use these coercive producers, because the same invisible hand that collapsed the factory in Bangladesh is the same invisible hand that compels both parents of children born in the “wealthy”  West to work long hours, just to meet the bills. Of course, there is perhaps 10% of the working population that could shop in ethically-supplied stores, but for the vast majority, the relentless pressure of capitalism compels all of us to stomp on our neighbour to stay ahead one minute more, before we get stomped on in our turn, sooner or later. That’s not just the whine of history’s thickest economist, Karl Marx; no that’s the view of arch capitalist apologist, Max Weber (see The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism).

In the US (but UK and Europe are the same) wages and salaries as a percentage of GDP peaked in 1968. This was in the early stages of women joining the workforce, but before employers realized that what they had to pay women they could take from the men. So that, instead of being a “drudge” at home, looking after her children and taking orders from her jerk husband, she could ditch the kids in care, go to work and take orders from her jerk boss. Total household income has been falling since the Seventies as productivity rose but all the gains were absorbed by the ruling triumvirate, i.e. government (through taxes); employers (through real wage cuts) and the banks (through inflation).

But our masters’ gain has been society’s loss. The feminist revolution may have been financially beneficial to A and B females, but for C1, C2, D and E women, it has given us the broken society. With care outsourced, three generations of children have grown up without constant maternal supervision and assistance. And the poorer you are, the more you need your mother. Is it any wonder the West’s educational standards are falling (see Pisa studies)?

Going hand-in-hand with the capitalists are the usurers, the chargers of interest and owners of counterfeit money. For this reason, few of us can ever save enough to live comfortably in retirement. Whatever economic miracles the last 100 years have produced, the price has been paid by the most vulnerable. Usury and the debt-based money system have destroyed every economy they have been allowed to infect. The only relief is to delay the malignant effects by indebting other, less developed economies. Capitalism is the economic equivalent of the video in Japanese horror/Hollywood remake “The Ring”.

Our economy is in ruins, but few people know it because of the massive exposure to usurers’ propaganda. A factory may have collapsed in Bangladesh, but capitalism’s mortal effects are going to be felt closer to home in future.Image

The Economy Follows Morality, Hence Thatcherism

For I am the Lord thy God, a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon their children unto the third and fourth generation, to them that hate me. And showing mercy unto many thousands, to them that love me, and keep my commandments. Deuteronomy 5:9-10

To champagne socialists and unemployed miners, some now in their twenties, Lady Thatcher made Britain the immoral, acquisitors’ platform* that we see about us today. This is because, like all baby boomers, whether of the Left or the Right, they are hedonists who operate on an extremely short time horizon. They want MOAR and they want it NOW! They are blind to the nature of cause and effect. If the effect happens more than a week after the cause, they are psychologically incapable of seeing the connection.

*see previous post on platform Britain

Thatcher gave the beautiful people what they wanted economically in the Eighties, just as Roy Jenkins and David Steel gave them what they demanded morally in the Sixties, i.e. the permissive society. Sexualization of the culture, the end of taboos on promiscuity, divorce, abortion, drug-taking, public displays of emotion* and mass immigration allowed the gilded youth free rein to indulge their lasciviousness without opprobrium. And they did.

*Britain is now a land of emotionally incontinent drunks; the stiff upper lip has gone.

Those to whom morality and taboo were a protection against the predators of this world paid the price of the bien pensants’ freedom. Thousands of upper-middle and middle class women were economically freed from the paternalistic tyranny of marriage by getting careers. And as the fish rots from the head down, soon the new morality was foisted on lower-middle and then working class women who weren’t so well cushioned against the malign effects of living in a morality-free zone. Hence we had the rise of single parenting, fatherless families, 4×4 mums and a massive increase in crime (still officially denied). Consequently, the welfare state had to be expanded egregiously to cope with all the consequences of immorality. Not that anyone was allowed to say a single mother was a failure, so we got MOAR! For every woman who earned a salary in the professions, several of her “sisters” in the C2DE socio-economic demographic lost a husband because marriage was by now, “just a bit of paper”. Mick Philpott’s moral compass pointed towards the diabolical, because that’s how he was told to think, and the state provided him with the means to express his wickedness.

Twenty years on from the Swingin’ Sixties, as the boomers reached their thirties and forties, what they wanted was money, but they were hampered by the economic conventions of the time. Now, however, with two generations of demoralized peons to provide cover, it was child’s play to start the wealth transfer from labour to usurers. Thatcher merely fulfilled the mandate given her by those who decide and with a critical mass of popular support it was away with the old strictures of living within one’s means and “the desire of money is the root of all evils” 1 Tim 6:10.

Once again, there were beneficiaries of this blatant acquisitiveness, but their good times were paid for in hard times for the great many more victims. And like the demoralization of the UK, those most exposed to financial predation were least capable of protecting themselves from the malign effects. Since the Eighties were have all been told we must give up any expectation of a job for life and have a portfolio career, i.e. re-set your wages lower every decade; the UK’s debt burden is larger than Cyprus’s and will never be repaid, so there will be a wholesale expropriation of home equity, pensions, savings and hard assets; graduates must start their working lives already carrying the equivalent of a 5 year mortgage.

An immoral economy is the consequence of an immoral society. Hampstead liberals wished this on us, but are blind to their culpability. A fine condemnatory speech of Thatcherism was made by the ne plus ultra of Hampstead liberals, Glenda Jackson, MP for Hampstead and Kilburn. I have transcribed some of it below so that you don’t have to watch her whole performance – a septuagenarian swishing her hair about and grimacing like an ingénue. However, if you want to see it, it is easy to find on YouTube.

Underneath the text is another of Glenda’s performances, this one from 1977. So when Glenda asks why vices became virtues and vice versa under Thatcher, she need only look in her bulb-festooned make-up mirror. Attacking “the establishment”, and the Church in particular, was a necessary step to demoralize society and pave the way for the expansionary plans of usurers, who are just as keen on socialism as they are on capitalism. Jackson played her part in facilitating the rise of usury and the attendant destruction of man.

“Thatcherism was still wreaking as it had wreaked for the previous decade the most heinous social, economic and spiritual damage upon this country, upon my constituency and my constituents…But the basis to Thatcherism, and this is where I come to the spiritual part of what I regard as the desperately, desperately wrong track that Thatcherism took this country into, is that we were told that everything I had been taught to regard as a vice, and I still regard them as vices, under Thatcherism was in fact a virtue. Greed, selfishness, no care for the weaker, sharp elbows sharp knees, they were the way forward…She created an aspirational society – it aspired for things…And people knowing under those years the price of everything and the value of nothing…What concerns me is that I am beginning to see possibly the re-emergence of that total traducing of what I regard as the basis spiritual nature of this country [sic]. Where we do care about society; where we do believe in communities; where we do not leave people to walk by on the other side. That isn’t happening now and if we go back to the heyday of that era I think we will see replicated yet again the extraordinary human damage that we as a nation have suffered from. The talent that has been totally wasted because of the inability to genuinely see the individual value of every single human being…The women that I knew who raised me and millions of people like me who ran our factories and our businesses, put out the fires when the bombs dropped. They would not have recognized their definition of womanliness as being incorporated an iconic model of Margaret Thatcher. To pay tribute to the first prime minister deputed by female gender, okay, but a woman not on my terms.” Glenda Jackson MP, April 10, 2013

The “Lump of Labour Fallacy” Fallacy

Mass immigration to the West is not only economically illiterate, it is contra the teachings of the Catholic Church, and thus immoral. Anyone who supports mass immigration is an enemy of Christendom, whether motivated by enmity or ignorance.

In their teachings on economics, part of what is called social justice, the popes started with microeconomics, that is the relations between individual economic actors, be they workers, capitalists or landowners. Pope Leo XIII’s seminal encyclical Rerum Novarum (1891) restated the Church’s continuous teaching that pace capitalism and socialism, labour is not merely one factor of production. According to the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church “…by the grace of God, work can be a means of sanctification and collaboration with Christ for the salvation of others” (para.513). Bl. Pope John Paul II claimed that, “…even in the age of ever more mechanized “work”, the proper subject of work continues to be manLaborem Exercens (1981).

From Bl. Pope John XXIII onward papal encyclicals on social justice have tended to deal with the economic interactions between countries, or macroeconomics as it is know in the trade. Initially, the popes noted how international trade shared characteristics with leonine contracts, for example Pope Paul VI wrote in Populorum Progressio (1967) “[Free trade] certainly can work when both parties are about equal economically; in such cases it stimulates progress and rewards effort…But the case is quite different when the nations involved are far from equal,…in this case, the fundamental tenet of liberalism, as the norm for market dealings, is open to serious question.” He added, “Now in trade relations between the developing and the highly developed economies there is a great disparity in their overall situation and in their freedom of action”.

Of course the popes do not discriminate between macro and microeconomics – what applies in one discipline applies in the other, as Paul VI made clear, acknowledging the teaching of Leo XIII; “In Rerum Novarum this principle [leonine contracts] was set down with regard to a just wage for the individual worker; but it should be applied with equal force to contracts made between nations:” John Paul II, again in Populorum Progressio, wrote that, “Emigration in search of work must in no way become an opportunity for financial or social exploitation. As regards the work relationship, the same criteria should be applied to immigrant workers as to all other workers in the society concerned”.

In looking at any question, the Church, unlike those with a nefarious agenda, considers all those affected and weighs their respective claims. Immigration is no different in this respect, and as Pope Pius XII wrote in Exsul Familia Nazarethana (1952), “…the sovereignty of the State, although it must be respected, cannot be exaggerated to the point that access to this land is, for inadequate or unjustified reasons, denied to needy and decent people from other nations, provided of course, that the public wealth, considered very carefully, does not forbid this”. Note, the immigrants are assumed to be “decent” and that their claims must be balanced against the rights of natives. This is significantly different from the one-sided arguments pushed by subversives (see “critical theory”) who give immigrants an absolute right to migrate to the West, irrespective of their moral character or their impact on the economy.

Finally, the Church, with Her special care for the most vulnerable, recognizes that it is an ill-wind that blows nobody any good and that what suits the powerful may not be in the best interests of the poor. To protect their interests, the State must explicitly consider how policies impact the most vulnerable, and act accordingly. Again, Leo XIII (Rerum Novarum) said it first and best, “The richer class have many ways of shielding themselves, and stand less in need of help from the State; whereas the mass of the poor have no resources of their own to fall back upon, and must chiefly depend upon the assistance of the State. And it is for this reason that wage-earners, since they mostly belong in the mass of the needy, should be specially cared for and protected by the government”. Thus when any policy has a deleterious effect on the poor, the state is duty-bound to do everything it can to maintain the real value of wages.

Examining mass immigration through the lens of Catholic social teaching, we can see that the policy breaches every tenet laid out in the documents cited above.

When mass immigration to the UK was starting in the 1950s, the first two complaints of the locals were that, 1) “They are changing our street” and 2) “They are taking our jobs”. The proponents of mass immigration had a counter-argument for each objection, being “You’re a racist!” and “That’s the Lump of Labour Fallacy”, respectively. Anyone who wanted to retain the British monoculture, with local variations, was a racist, and anyone whose wages dropped and blamed it on immigrants was an economically illiterate racist. And that was pretty much that for the next 60 years.

Economists and sociologists now acknowledge the value of social capital – that commonly held “rules of behaviour” lower the costs of living for everyone, since not every interaction has to be negotiated afresh. Immigration as a political issue is at the forefront of the British electorate’s mind because of the imminent arrival of many Romanian and Bulgarian citizens and their entitlement to access the UK’s anti-Catholic welfare state. In order to prevent defections to political parties that might take immigration seriously, the LibLabCon are spewing platitudes about how they feel our pain. Provided a person has established their politically correct bona fides, he may admit that the costs of the social upheavals were borne primarily by those who could least afford them. Labour leader, Ed Miliband, paid lip service to this fact is a recent party political broadcast, as have the prime minister and his deputy. However, those outside the politically correct fold (and thus are likely to do something about it) will continue to be lambasted as racists. Such is the case with a UKIP poster in Manchester which reads, “Stop open door EU immigration. Enough is enough.” Within hours trade unionists had organized a campaign to bombard the billboard company with complaints to get the poster removed. Similarly, reluctant Croydon resident, Emma West, has yet to be tried for her notorious YouTube appearance decrying the multi-cultural milieu in which she is compelled to live. I’m sure if West had the means she’d be happily ensconced in Epsom and like the rich white-flighters, immigration would be out of sight, out of mind – if only for a few years more.

The “Lump of Labour” theory is a pejorative term for the empirical observation that locals have to work for the same lower wages as immigrants or be displaced by them. The theory implies that the economy needs a certain amount of work done and if you add more people that work is spread over more workers, so wages fall. The politically correct mouthpieces claim that the average migrant is a net contributor and thus they add more value to the economy, hence it is a fallacy that migrants take locals jobs.

The reason that the Lump of Labour Fallacy is itself a fallacy is because un- and low-skilled migrants cannot support themselves in a high value-added economy, such as pertains in Europe and the US. [Japan doesn’t have this problem because it has very few immigrants (about 2% of the population) and is generally hostile to them, and certainly hasn’t changed any of its laws to accommodate them.] Globalization has created wage arbitrage opportunities, where every worker on the planet is competing with the cheapest workforce, i.e. the Chinese fascist state that has no health and safety laws and prefers to abort second children at eight and a half months, to teach errant parents a lesson.

It is expensive to live in the West and even those who are born and brought up under capitalism often find themselves prematurely unemployed or under-employed because surplus value is not retained by labour but expropriated by the usurers and capitalists. Rationally, labour seeks to retain its reward for effort, i.e. wages, but capital constantly changes the rules of employment to prevent that happening. In the first stage of capitalism, capitalists drove wages down below the cost of replacement workers, i.e. below the long-term subsistence level (because labour always underprices the infrequent but large costs of living, e.g. large home repairs, health care and retirement).

In the next stage to get wages lower, jobs that could be off-shored were, so that no local workers were needed. This was most easily done with high value-added manufactured goods, whose wage costs are a significant percentage of the total costs of production. There remained a number of jobs that are not suitable for off-shoring, either because the costs of transport are significant relative to costs of production or because they are services that must be delivered locally. In these cases, since the mountain cannot go to Mohammed, Mohammed must come to the mountain, and the off-shore workers were imported to do the work on-site. This is the third stage and that is where we are now – imported labour that is prepared to work for a fraction of the cost of local labour, displacing it.

If the Lump of Labour Fallacy were indeed a fallacy, then since mass immigration started the need for transfer payments per head would have gone down, or at least remained stable. However, we know that the fallacy is a fallacy because the welfare bill in the UK (and in the rest of the West) rises every year. See this site to have a look at how spending has changed over time. http://www.ukpublicspending.co.uk/spending_brief.php. Capitalists have extracted excess value from labour using global wage arbitrage for the last 50 years, and their necessities of life have had to be supplied by the ever-shrinking pool of taxpayers. I have posted previously about the anti-Catholic outcomes of the welfare state, but crime and abortion are but two manifestations of how sordid the arrangement is.

Till the banking crisis of 2008, when debt could be created easily, the destruction of middle class jobs was not apparent because credit took the place of wages. But, now credit is no longer available, and therefore the insufficiency of wages is becoming more apparent daily. The global market capitalization of all traded financial assets (stocks, corporate bonds, government bonds, real estate securities, futures contracts, over-the-counter derivatives and mortgage-backed securities) is falling, despite the best efforts of manipulative central banks – the usurers’ lickspittles. This is the “float” that supports all economic activity, and pays for the high wage jobs that fund the Western lifestyle. This economic model has been broken beyond repair and it cannot come back. The implied adjustment to personal living standards is too dramatic for most of us to comprehend, and that is before the usurers steal cash out of our bank accounts. Dutch finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem, is a moment of unguarded candor, said that Cyprus would be the model for future expropriations.

Western economies need fewer un- and low-skilled workers, whether local or foreign because capital has supplanted labour. The capitalists and usurers have never allowed labour to earn its fair share of what it produces, making up the difference by offering credit in the short-term. But now the liabilities built-up since the last crisis cannot be met out of current income because the system cannot create debt fast enough. Egregious abuse of debt-based money has allowed successive governments to lull the electorate to sleep regarding how much unskilled immigration is good for an advanced economy. It was easier to take the money offered by the state and stay silent, than be punished financially (employment acts) and physically (UAF etc) for opposing immigration.

Immigrants from the East and from the southern hemisphere lack the skills and knowledge to support themselves long-term in the decaying West. Their importation was and is a deliberate act of Leftythinkers, as admitted by Andrew Neather, to make a shipwreck of the UK. What are the usurers’ plans once they have razed the economy and we are all living like the state-owned labour depicted in 1984? History is replete with examples of how usurers run economies when their demands are unfettered.

Cyprus is Usurers’ Test Bed

History and literature acknowledge that usurers demand to be paid, whatever the human cost. And they obviously believe they now have the coercive mechanisms in place to compel nations to pay what “we” owe.

Greek Cypriots woke up this morning to the expropriation of their bank accounts – there is historical precedent as Pope Francis can personally attest because Argentina stole 75% of cash in bank accounts in 2001.

Cyprus had to use the blunt instrument of direct theft because the traditional means employed by usurers, inflation, is not available to them. If all citizens of the eurozone think this will not be applied to them in due course, they are ignorant of who owns the EU – the usurers.

see zerohedge for further details

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-03-16/after-cyprus-who-next