The press, forever derpy
Argentina is in no sense a country friendly to the United States. For one thing, its president was just last month going around telling everyone willing to listen that Obama is trying to assassinate her.i For another thing, there is that entire dispute about free money that came to a head recently.ii There's also a lengthy list of "cultural mismatches", which is to say the usual fare of nobody sane giving two shits for US
Meanwhile La Nacioniii is a newspaper hostile to Argentina's president and to some degree also hostile to the slow-cooked socialism that's called here oficialismo and more or less claims itself as a continuator of Peron (of which Cristina claims herselfiv somehow descended). I doubt this hostility is due to any other reason than... well... you gotta have people opposing each other in any group of people, neh ? (She obviously believes that todo hace juego con todo, ie, that Obama dun it.)
That said, we're ready to very briefly look through yesterday's edition :
As you can perhaps guess from the title, it's a piece covering the recent situation in Russia. The summary of the narrative (with comments) is something like this :
El rublo se desploma y lleva a Putin a su momento más débil
This is not actually true. After the [perceived] string of Western humiliations he recently inflicted (in Syria, and most importantly in the Ukraine) Putin is easily at his strongest today. He was at his weakest a number of times a decade ago, and maybe once or twice during the Medveev presidency. Today he is stronger than Bush was in 2001, and that means that yes, he does have the authority to start an all-out war with the United States. And perhaps even Chinese support to do it.
Obama, meanwhile, is not nearly in the same position.
elevando la presión sobre el presidente Vladimir Putin, impotente ante una dramática crisis monetaria agravada por el derrumbe del crudo y las sanciones económicas de Occidente.
"This is how we'd like things to appear."
Después de caer anteayer 9,5%, sin precedente desde la crisis financiera de 1998, la moneda rusa llegó a perder ayer más de 20%, alcanzando un nivel inédito de 100 rublos por euro y 80 por dólar. En el cierre de las operaciones, el rublo se recuperó un poco y cotizó a 90 unidades por un euro y 72 por un dólar.
"This is how things actually are"
El fantasma de un inminente caos económico sobrevolaba ayer las principales ciudades del país, donde los rusos cambiaban sus rublos por dólares o euros o atestaban las casas de electrodomésticos y computación para comprar tablets, LCD, heladeras, laptops y smartphones.
"This is how we'd like things to appear."
Entre los inversores aumentaban los temores a que el Kremlin intensifique la emisión de moneda para enfrentar sus problemas de deuda.
This is a very strange brand of nonsense. Specifically : if a government was getting ready to print, it wouldn't move its Fed rate from an otherworldly 10.5%v to a simply incomprehensible 17%. It would instead do what the Fed is doing : pretend 0.2% or whatever the fuck is an interest rate, and meanwhile pay 0.0007% for short term debt. But apparently in the fictitious world inhabited by La Nacion merely claiming the contrary of what the numbers indicate works just fine.
Cuando faltan apenas horas para la muy esperada conferencia de prensa anual del presidente ruso, la tormenta económica perfecta estaría a punto de golpear Rusia.
Right. They practically say it's been engineered to impress. Would you be surprised should it fail to impress (again) ? Perhaps it's the case that Putin "just doesn't understand how the world works" (again), which specifically means that "the world" aka Reddit has decided that all that matters this Spring is impression, and this barbarous Russian is disturbing their Kink High antics. How dares he!
"La situación en el país es totalmente inestable. Tenemos miedo" se lamentó Yulia, interrogada frente a un banco de Moscú, donde se ha formado una larga cola.
Good for Yulia.
Meanwhile I can attest and confirm that Yulia in Moscu was saying "voydi v menya" at the same time. So either La Nacion is lying, there's more than one Yulia in Moscow or ... gasp... holy shit, some British researchers have discovered that first name basis testimonials are entirely fake 172% of the time! And twice this morning!
La caída sostenida del rublo podría presentarle a Putin opciones que hasta ahora no contemplaba -como profundas reformas económicas- y serias dificultades para sostener el apoyo político que aún mantiene en Rusia, incluso con las relaciones prácticamente congeladas con Occidente.
This is true, and if you've been following at all it's quite clear to you what the options in question are.
Al mismo tiempo, el líder del Kremlin enfrenta la delicada situación de las empresas estatales rusas, que tienen su financiamiento muy acotado. Antes de fin de año, las corporaciones rusas deberán pagar 30.000 millones de dólares en préstamos externos.
En 2015 deberán ser honradas deudas por 130.000 millones de dólares sin que aún se advierta otra fuente de financiamiento que las reservas del Banco Central de Rusia, cuya credibilidad ahora se cuestiona.
Suppose Putin exercises his option for those things not to be paid anymore. What are the Western agents owning Russia's own version of La Nacion, trying to disseminate this exact same shit in Russian going to do, other than take the loss ? Don't tell me, let me guess... they're going to... sanction Russia ?
Or what, divest ? Not buy its debt anymore, with fake dollars they just happened to find fifty quadrillion of in a basement somewhere, and never ever ever have to repay ? Awww.
So sad, seriously.
This was the point threatening from the edges back when Argentina was arguing in New York : if they default, that's not as much a blow to Argentina as it is to the entire system. Then they defaulted, and it created a locus. It was an extremely important moment for financial politics. Now if Russia does it too, well... "it'll just be like Argentina", right ? No big deal, no particular stigma attached, plausible deniability all the way.
But It'll also be the end of Bretton Woods, because why would anyone pay any US denominated debt anymore ? Suddenly being an ally of the US is extremely expensive, all the other people are enjoying a rain of free money. Suddenly the US is financially isolated and politically... at its weakest. A situation it has been enjoying every single year for about 12 years running now.
Poco antes, el BCR había puesto en circulación 6000 millones de dólares, también en una medida que apuntaba a detener la devaluación. Pero ninguna de las tantas disposiciones parece ser suficiente.
Los problemas de Rusia se suman a la creciente impopularidad de mercados emergentes en la medida en que una apreciación del dólar atrae capital hacia activos estadounidenses con mejores retornos.
(from Los países emergentes, las posibles víctimas colaterales de un derrumbe ruso, next on page)
Explain the logic of this, if you can. So somewhere exists this magical business man, we are told, who judges that the best thing to do is sell a currency whose bonds are yielding 17%, in favour of a "better return" to be sought in a currency whose bonds are yielding nothing. In what world is this sensible ?
I mean, in what world other than the current one, where the AML/KYC nonsensevi has managed to reduce the independence of everyone to nothing, so that basically the entire "business world"vii consists of a bunch of Washington agents ? Sure, if you exist to do what Washington tells you, then you will sell 17% to buy 0%. Because "it offers better returns", in the sense that you can cook your books any which way with the help of the Fed's magical genie lamp - and then hide under the masquerade of US justice to avoid any sort of consequences once your "customers" realise you've bankrupt them. Sounds like a most excellent system, sure, sure, "you just want to live your life in peace".
Thing is, I do not wish for you to live your life in peace. No fraudster should ever live in peace, nor do they actually manage to live in peace, if history's any guide. So if you are part of that scam, I will find you, and I will kill you. Point blank, just like that. It's what I do : I skip school and I kill people.
"La caída del rublo y de la Bolsa no es sólo una reacción al bajo precio del petróleo y las sanciones, sino también la falta de confianza en la política económica del gobierno", escribió en su cuenta de Twitter el ex ministro de Economía ruso Alexei Kudrin, el favorito de muchos políticos cercanos al Kremlin para reemplazar a Medvedev.
Twitter, you see. "Las sanciones" you see, not "the efforts of our enemies", but just like that, generally. The punishment of God.
It seems altogether improbable that Kudrin is ever coming back anywhere near Kremlin. It also seems altogether probable that his 2011 resignation (widely covered in HuffPo etcviii) was in fact the result of some covers being blown. Look through the list of sudden departures from Moscow of "technical staff" early September 2011 if you'd like to play Risk at home with the high stakes game of international politics.
But let's move on to lulzier pastures :
This is some article about some random fucktard that claimed to have made however many millions on the stock exchange. Which the press lapped up because his name was Islam something and his age 17. That's right, the US "stock market" is reduced to "find out the secret bankers hate - how an ugly teenager made billionz!". Ah, such lovely new world with such sophistication in it!
Anyway, the lulzy part of the entire article, to me, was its likely reception. Some kid sitting down to read La Nacion with his shoeshine box somewhere in this great city is going to see that "gurus of Wall Street" bit and imagine that you know, George Soros - who's been a fugitive from justice for what, twenty five years now ? - and Warren Buffett - who as best anyone can tell has never actually left Omaha - gather together in this magical "Wall Street", which is probably like a sort of parillada in New York, right ? Corrientes y Billinghurst, or something. And they sit there drinking their ristretto going "Oh man, isn't it great being the gurus of Wall Street!" Like Gardel and his friends or something like that.
PS. All this is translated material from "news agencies", you realise. The locals have no fucking idea what anything is, but they kinda aspire to looking civilised, and so they'll make a stu of the various bits of nonsense being pushed by Washington's own press corps.
A century ago, back when colonialism was still the name of the gameix, this process yielded net positive results for the various outposts of the civilised world. That changed drastically once truth became a casualty of war twice in three decades, but these poor souls haven't yet figured it out - in that slow, unwitty manner evolution figures things out.
Remember that older discussion going
So I visit with my peso broker, drop some dollar bills on him, and while he's shoveling clumps of the local fiat (soon to be as valuable as the dollar, by the way) I check out his stash of dollars. You know what he has there ? Three piles of one dollar bills, one smaller pile of fives. Do you know why ?
Take a moment and think why.
They save in dollars over here, you see. The average worker in this country, trying to protect the fruits of his labour from the idiocy of his compatriots ; the average parent, trying to create a tiny bit of a future for his offspring that's different from living in the shithole resulting from the aggregation of all the opportunities the laziness of his compatriots afford, all these people save. One belaboured dollar at a time. And when a need hits them, they sell part or perhaps all of that clump of solidified brow sweat. Dollar bills.
The great sadness in the collapse of the US are not the few million worthless fuckwits who chose to fritter their time away pointlessly, discussing wholly imaginary nonsubjects such as "rape" and "discrimination" and "global warming" and so onx, in their own terms. I feel not the slightest bit of compassion for Jane Smith in Palo Alto, who might have to start sucking cock for a living whether she wants to or not, because her imaginary "history of feminism" degree is useless. I have not the faintest whisper of empathy for John Brown in Queens, who might have to polish the shoes of Taliban investors in Manhattan for a shaworma a day because all his ideas about singing-songwriting and never being punched were misplaced. I couldn't care less for all the pretend CEOs and in-their-own-mind university professors and faux-journalists and web designers and what the hell else that are about to meet the business end of the grinder all over the 50 contiguous states.
I do feel quite sorry indeed however for the few billion human beings living in third hand countries, immersed in third hand cultures, surrounded by the shit of their own failure amassed over the millenia. From India to Peru, countless, untold multitudes who, unable either individually or in groups of their own choosing to match the glory and the splendour of [meanwhile defunct] white culture, nevertheless try to participate. One dollar at a time, and in that dollar an investment not merely of whatever scarce resources and mostly worthless labour they've expended, but of hope and of trust. Of hope and trust, in the unshakable power of the spawn of Europe, in the far seeing wisdom of the fair skinned folk, in their ultimate benevolence and fundamental representativity as the better fraction of the entire species.
That's your Argentinian, your Benghali, your Taliban or Columbian buying a dollar : the simple submission, the nude declaration that while he himself can't be all that people can be, and can't see all that people can see, you... you are, and you will be.
The disappointment of this hope - illusory, of course, like all hope ever is - that's the sad part of the collapse - inevitable, as all collapse ever is - of the last remnant of the colonial empire of Europexi. Sure, on its ruins other things, great things will come to be, that's how it works. But for the five centuries between Odoacer and Cluny, the pitch of despair of the Franks and the Goths and whatever other barbarians by far and quite widely exceeded the bitterness of actual Roman Romans (ie, from Rome). By about the same factors, by the same degrees of magnitude.
So no, when I despise you for the despicable waste that you are, it's not just because you can't walk up to a woman and slap her butt, it's not just because you can't throw a punch or take a punch, it's not just because you suck. It's because of what your sucking means, and that's a helluvalot more than merely being a failed individual, unable on his own account to ensure for himself a decent burial.
Well... it's not just money.
It's not just money, you dumb fucks. Your press used to be worth stealing, a century ago. Meanwhile... Nobody even gives a shit about that Ruby thing whatever it is. I wouldn't have watched it anyway, I can't be bothered to download it, I doubt even the people who ripped it out of your cold, dead hands bothered to watch it. They only took it to kill you, to make the point that oh, wow, MPAA has won the war on torrents and all that.
You don't make anything worth taking, even for free. The entire thing still moves on the fumes of the fact that the thirld world hasn't figured it out yet. A sorrier fate could not readily be conceived, for the sons on the continent their fathers fought to conquer.———
- This claim would sound a lot more ridiculous if it weren't in fact the case that the US rogue state has in point of fact attempted to assassinate or kidnap a good two or three dozen actual heads of other states in the past few decades, not to count untold thousands or perhaps millions of random citizens. That its success rate is barely in the single digit percents does not help much, either.
In any case, the local secret service (SI, ex SIDE) was reshuffled coupla days ago, getting a new chief and second. [↩]
- Remember that bit in The Dilemma Of Fake Money going "Hey Fed ? If you have all this free money, give everyone some!" ?
Back then it was Elizabeth Warren trying to buy some student votes with the magical Fed paper. The principle is however not lost on anyone anywhere. If the Fed has a machine to make free money and yet it doesn't give everyone free money, the Fed is a poopyhead!
Griesa and the rest of the sops can yap all they want about "responsibility" and "contracts" and "having to repay". They can talk themselves sore, it's nothing but gargle. The fact is that for as long as the Fed is printing nobody has any actual obligation to repay anyone any sum of dollars. Who in his right mind would treat the US dollar seriously under these circumstances and why exactly ? Just so Obama can then exploit this misplaced faith and trust into financing his own assassination politics game ? Lol ok, troll more, but do it somewhere else.
Obviously everyone, from Russia to Argentina will act to remove the magical printing press of the world currency from the hands of the White House administration, much like they're acting to remove the Internet from the same, and for the same exact reasons. It's just not good business for one to have the village well "on his property" and then prevent others from drawing water. If a half dozen illiterate mobsters in New York could figure out as much back in the XIXth century, obviously the point won't be exactly lost on anyone today. Bottom line : if a magical source of infinite money in fact exists, it does not belong to Obama, to do with it as he pleases. Period and full stop. [↩]
- Along with the other one, Clarin. Which is in fact owned by and a local vehicle for Goldman Sachs. [↩]
- The woman's a prime manufacturer of word salad. I guess something like that is unavoidable when you're stuck with a country that's half made up by barely literate telenovela fiends. Nevertheless, I'd rather watch McCain campaign speech reruns. In slow motion. [↩]
- Seriously, close your eyes, imagine the US Fed rate is now 10.5%, imagine the budget passing through Congress. No, try it.
Unthinkable, right ? Especially seeing how the US hasn't actually managed a budget for what, 5 years now ? I seem to recall earlier this situation where the debt ceiling was threatening to send the country into default, according to its own president. Do you recall the dollar collapsing 50% overnight ?
More importantly : had it collapsed 50% overnight, do you picture in the mind's eye anything but Stakhanovite praise by Krugman and friends, explaining how "a weaker dollar is good for the economy" and "creates jobs" etc ? Mmmkay. [↩]
- Something which, by the way, I will never implement. This is why we fight, and on this point there will be no negotiation. [↩]
- The actual business world consists of #bitcoin-assets. [↩]
"Putin cherishes Kudrin too much to put him in the crossfire of unpopular measures," Petrov said.
bit is truely great, I thought. [↩]
- And no, colonialism didn't end "because of moral concerns". Colonialism ended because to continue it would have required real men and real women, with a clue, with letters, with a love of work. You're none of the above, you're a bunch of dyslexic monkeys clicking buttons for food pellets. [↩]
- The quotes are there not to indicate that such subjects could never be serious, but merely to point out that in the way they're treated by these people, they couldn't be less serious. [↩]
- The notion that the US is its own country... heh. Not in any sense worth the mention. [↩]
Thursday, 18 December 2014
The press of yore may have been trustworthy and sane, but for those same qualities, incomprehensible to large swaths of people. That it's more accessible now to the same folks is worthless given the change didn't occur -in themselves-, but externally.
The sad state is being unable, and unable to address (or even see) the inability. That the quality of media or any other mass tool changes for better or for worse has little if any impact; the shoeshiner fitting the "news" to the familiar constraints of Timbuktu is merely doing the same fantasizing with a different medium, and the old wizard atop his golden toilet in Piazza San Marco moves from the morning paper to #b-a on the laptop.
Friday, 19 December 2014
Il n'est point de progrès, il n'est point de révolution d'âges, dans les vicissitudes du savoir, mais au mieux une continue et sublime récapitulation.