Archive | November, 2010

  • How Panurge Praiseth the Debtors and Borrowers

    But, quoth Pantagruel, when will you be out of debt?  At the next ensuing term of the Greek kalends, answered Panurge, when all the world shall be content, and that it be your fate to become your own heir.  The Lord forbid that I should be out of debt, as if, indeed, I could not […]

  • Gates’ False Iran Premise: Sanctions Will Not Sow Internal Discord and Change Iran’s Nuclear Calculations

    Since returning to government service to take up his current position, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has been a sober skeptic about the wisdom of military strikes against Iranian nuclear targets — under President Obama as well as under President George W. Bush, and regardless of whether such strikes would be carried out by the […]

  • Palestine 2011

    Struggling as I have for the past decades to grasp the dynamics of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and find ways to get out of this interminable and absolutely superfluous conflict, I have been two-thirds successful.  After many years of activism and analysis, I think I have put my finger on the first third of the equation: […]

  • Currency War and US Imperialism: Interview with Samir Amin

    There has been much publicity about the so-called “currency war” arising from the discussions at the recent G20 meeting.  Can you explain what is meant by currency war? The discourse, the rhetoric, on the currency war is very superficial and even misleading.  As everybody knows, what is being said is that the Chinese yuan is […]

  • Hugo Chávez’ speech

    An unprecedented meeting had taken place in the United States Capitol building between a group of legislators from the fascist right of that country and leaders of the Latin American right and pro-coup oligarchy. In that meeting there was talk of the defeat of the governments of Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua. The event took […]

  • Day X: “Only the Beginning”

    * * * “[T]his picture from the occupation at Royal Holloway, taken by Philip Ieuan John, illustrates the scale of yesterday’s protest.” — Jamie Stern-Weiner, New Left Project * * * After Day X: 28 Nov Student Coordination After the day of action . . . NATIONAL STUDENT COORDINATION12noon — 5pm Sunday 28th NovemberBirkbeck College, […]

  • The Spectre of Default in Europe

    Default, Debt Renegotiation and Exit When the Eurozone crisis burst out in early 2010, an RMF report identified three strategic options for peripheral countries, namely, first, austerity imposed by the core and transferring the costs of adjustment onto society at large, second, broad structural reform of the Eurozone in favour of labour and, third, exit […]

  • Squeezing Iran: The European Connection

    Negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program are due to start again shortly, and once again the European Union is called upon as a “mediator.”  This is no minor challenge.  With Iran insisting on discussing Israel’s nuclear capacity and the United States preparing a tougher uranium swap agreement, a deal seems as far away as ever.  Nevertheless, […]

  • “Keep Negotiating Firmly with Private Creditors”

      Some time before the offer [at the meetings with the IMF and the WB in Dubai on 22 September 2003], [Argentine Economy Minister Roberto] Lavagna was already preparing the ground: he realized that after the offer “there are going to be sad faces everywhere.”  And indeed the first reaction of the creditors was rejection. […]

  • Ireland Should Study the Lessons of Argentina

    When a firefighter or medical team make a rescue, the person is usually better off as a result.  This is less clear when the rescuer is the European Central Bank (ECB) or the IMF. Ireland is currently experiencing a 14.1 percent unemployment rate.  As a result of bailout conditions that will require more cuts in […]

  • Haircuts: Estimating Investor Losses in Sovereign Debt Restructurings, 1998-2005

      Table 14 summarizes the main technical characteristics of the debt restructurings studied in this paper: the size of the exchange, the participation rate, the numbers of instruments tendered and new instruments issued, the options available to investors, etc.  Table 15 contains the main results, both in terms of the level and dispersion of NPV […]

  • Ireland: Whose Rescue?

    For the banks For the Irish Eneko Las Heras, born in Caracas in 1963, is a cartoonist based in Spain.  This cartoon was first published on his blog . . . Y sin embargo se mueve on 19 November 2010.  Translation by Yoshie Furuhashi (@yoshiefuruhashi | yoshie.furuhashi [at] | Print

  • Noam Chomsky on Hopes and Prospects for Activism: “We Can Achieve a Lot”

    Acclaimed philosopher and activist Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor Emeritus of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  He shared his perspectives on international affairs, economics, and other themes in an interview conducted at his office in Boston on September 14, 2010. Keane Bhatt: Your new book Hopes and Prospects begins with the story of […]

  • NATO, World Gendarme

    Many people feel sickened on hearing the name of that organization. On Friday, November 19, 2010 in Lisbon, Portugal, the 28 members of that bellicose institution engendered by the United States, decided to create what they cynically describe as “the new NATO.” The institution emerged after World War II as an instrument of the Cold […]

  • China’s Export Conundrum

      In 2009, the European Union, United States and Mexico filed a complaint with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) against China’s export restrictions on certain raw materials, including bauxite, coke, fluorspar, silicon carbide and zinc.  They said that, firstly, these constraints — in the form of export taxes, quotas, licences and so on — caused […]

  • Ireland vs Iceland

      . . . The travails of the lands of Ire and Ice are not so much at odds with each other and come down essentially to the same point — the size of banking assets to that of the general economy; but they do differ considerably in how the two economies approached the battle. […]

  • A New Proclamation

    Poblacht na h Éireann™ The Temporary Government To the people of Anglo-Ireland™ IRISHMEN AND IRISHWOMEN: In the name of Mammon and of the dead generations from which she receives her old tradition of subservience, we declare the name of this country to be Anglo-Ireland™, and through us, Anglo-Ireland™ summons her children to aid her banks […]

  • A Goldfish with Glasses

    He must think workers are stupid.  How else can anyone explain it? He says, if UAW members lower the automakers’ fixed costs by cutting wages and benefits and trimming work rules to the bone — as in less break time and a jack-of-all-trades paradigm — it will help the union organize. It’s crazy.  It’s straight […]

  • Who Benefits from Deflation?

      Paul Jay: So if you’ve got more or less zero percent inflation and you’re getting 3 percent on your bond, you’re making 3 percent.  But if inflation’s 3 percent and you’re getting 3 percent on your bond, you’re down to zero.  Now, the Fed is saying that we can do this quantitative easing, increasing […]

  • The Socialist Alternative to IMF/EU Diktats

      The capitalist media say that there is no alternative to the thrust of the economic policies being advanced by the government, the EU and the IMF.  This is completely untrue.  There is an alternative — a socialist alternative. Shut Down Anglo Irish Bank The bailout of Anglo Irish Bank is set to cost the […]