Give 'em hell Pike! » Page 'The Big Con and the Big Lie'

The Big Con and the Big Lie

For a few weeks now I’ve been blissfully unconcerned by the Credit Crunch, and subsequent fall-out. I have no investments or pension, I’m not looking to buy or sell a house so the direct consequences don’t affect me. But further, I figured the market would find its balance, and this would all be small beer a few years hence – another Dot Com Crash, gone and soon forgotten. What has worried me is the usual media idiocy and uniformity of presented opinion (generally masquerading as fact), the quite pitiable reaction of the major political parties, and the general rush to ill-judged state interventions worldwide.


Throwing hundreds of billion of pounds and dollars away is not the policy of fiscal geniuses – instead, this is the classic action of a mark, trapped in a big con, desperately chucking good money after bad. And like the deluded suckers detailed in David Maurer’s entrancing work, these fellers are not fussed whose money they’re burning through. In this instance, Gordon, Alistair, it’s ours. This may be the biggest scam of all time, it may be a pan-national coup, it could be the beginning of Biblical end-times or a prelude to nuclear Armageddon – I’ve read it all in the past few weeks. But what it also undoubtedly is, is entirely ineffective. Seven hundred billion dollars might seem quite a lot of money. Forty or eighty billion quid would appear to be a fortune, but these sums are trivial when set against the mammoth debts racked up in the international credit default swap markets – once a way of insuring yourself against the failure of a creditor to pay you back, CDS used speculatively became what Warren Buffet described as “financial weapons of mass destruction”. The crashed banks have left, on some estimates, fifty trillion dollars of amplified debt careening around the world. The billions that central banks are throwing at the markets, striving to inject liquidity, fade against this vast debt.


So why the bailouts? What’s the point? Well to a banker there’s always a point in tapping the taxpayer for big fat subsidy, but why would governments get involved? Well, we have to be charitable and assume that someone in government has a three figure IQ, although it’s getting harder to stretch credulity in that direction. But I figure the answer is supplied by the other interventionist policy we’re seeing all over – governments claiming to guarantee savers’ accounts. Why do I say “claiming”? Because this is not a credible, practical policy – it’s the counterpoint to the Big Con in fact, the Big Lie. The Irish government says they’ll guarantee all funds, the Icelandic government says the same, the Germans are in on the act, the UK may follow suit – liars, liars, pants on fire. When your banks have liabilities that dwarf your GDP, a state cannot guarantee to pay out all funds, from all banks. The coffers are bare as it is, and the universe isn’t big enough to contain a sofa large enough to hold that much loose change. Anyone claiming that they can back each and every bank, each and every saving account, is a liar. And this, above all else, is what worries me. The Big Lie, repeated in every corner of the world – a hopeless, transparently ludicrous lie, but accepted as a valid, sensible policy by all quarters. I expect governments to lie, I expect big business to collude, but what the hell is up with all you zombies? Folks, wake up.


Now sure, the markets need confidence, this lie is designed to instil confidence in traders and punters alike – the goal is a revitalised consumer boom, it’s the only thing that can possibly drag the markets over this hump – but a moment’s consideration would reveal these guarantees to be worthless. How can a state provide cash handouts to bank customers that exceed its GDP, perhaps by a factor or four or five? Where would the money come from? What would be left of a nation that asset-stripped in this way? More to the point, in what way does entering a failed state compensate for getting 50K in your back pocket? Doesn’t sound a good deal, does it?


These promises are pie in the sky – what people are looking for is security and certainty, perhaps a foolish pursuit under any circumstances, but they’re not getting it from any government today. Interestingly, they can barely get it from the usual refuge in an economic crisis – gold. Prices are high, not as high as they might be though, and silver is particularly low. Insiders reckon governments and central banks are pushing prices down, making precious metals appear an unattractive alternative to stocks, bonds or cash, but the funny thing is that the spot prices on the markets, the price for “paper” gold or silver, as opposed to a hunk of the real thing, are low, yet if you want to buy, today, sovereigns, krugerands, american eagles, you’re going to find a problem. All over the world, “unexpected shortages” are coming to light – the US Mint has withdrawn all 24 carat gold coins from sale. Bullion dealers in the UK are selling out, and can’t get fresh supplies. Try a coin dealer for the odd sovereign, sure you might find some but not at the “official” price, or anywhere near. Naturally a commodity in demand will run short, but in that case, why is the market price for notional gold trending flat or down, or exchange traded funds in gold or silver trending well down? To date, at least.


Things are changing fast, and perhaps that’s one reason why journalists are unwilling to stick their necks out and pose awkward questions – a dazzling thesis on a Monday night can be cretinously dumb by Tuesday morning. One other possibility, and one I’ve suggested here many times, is that the media are part of the circus. The political world, the financial world – these are naturally in cahoots – we depend on the press to throw spanners into the works. The commodities shortages appear to be limiting spanner supplies too. There is the third possibility – that, although recognising the Big Con, and the Big Lie, journalists nonetheless ignore them, figuring the greater good demands discretion, acquiescence, complicity… If we’re all in the same boat, might it be a good idea not to rock it?


I don’t think so. Surfing this tidal wave of debt by shuffling liabilities aside and into the future, by bundling debt into “bad” banks, or even by currency devaluation – looking more likely by the day – doesn’t solve the problem. The problem is too many people, too many banks, too many nations, living beyond their means – banks need to fail, nations need to accept recession, and people need to suffer. Not a nice prospect – but it will either happen now, or perhaps in another five or ten years.


In the jargon, a market correction is long overdue. And markets will find their level – government subsidies and other market distortions may have an impact in the short term, but in the long term the volumes of trades are too great to fiddle – bans on shorting and other ill-judged window dressing can’t buck the market. If the government’s theft from your paycheck to bail out the bankers works this time, it won’t work next time – this will crash. It will crash hard. It’s just a question of when.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

16 comments to “The Big Con and the Big Lie”

  1. Give them HELL Frank

    An excellent post.

    Banks NEED to fail. Until they do, we are FUCKED.

  2. […] the original post here: The Big Con and the Big Lie bbc, bilderberg, financial, funny, give-8216em-hell-pike, government, kitchen, lies, market, […]

  3. Excellent post Frank,

    don,t you hate it when somebody steals from you.

  4. you bet your life that the media are in on it.

    The elite is serious about power. Big business doesn’t control the media or government, rather the elite controls all three.

    Politicians and the Meeja are all just salesmen, selling the notion of democracy, and checks and balances.

    It is shocking, the level of complacency and gullibility in the west. The elite are stealing from us all, because they know they will get away with it.

  5. ‘you bet your life that the media are in on it.’

    I found it curious that it was the Peston announcement 2 weeks ago which coincided with the HBOS crash – you could actually see the price go up at the time of the Beeb 9am news.

    Always suspicious when a ‘lone’ expert is touted as the omniscient one.

    I think Peston is the person who ‘cools the mark out’.


    ‘The “mark” would be allowed to win a little money in a rigged game and then be convinced to invest a larger amount. Suddenly, there would be some “accident,” the mark would be left penniless, and the “operators” would disappear.
    This is familiar ground for anyone who has ever watched a “sting” movie. Yet, Goffman observed that the con men had a further strategy to deal with the mark who was not willing to keep quiet about the whole embarrassing affair and “squawked” or “beefed” to the police. When the con men were confronted with such an angry mark, an additional step called “cooling the mark out” was added to the game: “one of the operators stays with the mark and makes an effort to keep the anger of the mark within manageable and sensible proportions … and exercises upon the mark the art of consolation.” This “cooler” tries to define the situation for the mark “in a way that makes it easy for him to accept the inevitable and quietly go home. The mark is given instruction in the philosophy of taking a loss.”

  6. I may of course be reading too much into this, but I do find it interesting that this is the first article I’ve submitted to CommentIsFree that they have rejected.

    And you guys know some of the stuff I’ve written about…

  7. Frank, everybody,

    have you checked out Engdahl’s site?

    This guy has impressed me in the past with his knowledge of the powerful but unseen undercurrents in world affairs.
    If you read any of his material on the financial crisis, bear in mind that some was written months ago, and his forecasting ability is pretty sharp.

    Essentially, he writes in a recent piece, that this crisis has been purposefully orchestrated by the already mega-rich, in order to take over the West’s banking industry at rock bottom prices. He pretty much accuses Greenspan and Paulson (and to a lesser degree Bernanke) as being complicit up to their eyeballs. There is a financial war going on, not presented as such, with Europe’s banking industry, as well as the domestic US one, acting the role of Fay Wray, with the all powerful but unseen monster approaching.

    Paulson is alleged to have a stake in Goldman sachs personally, of some $700m. Goldman was underwritten by and dependent on AIG, which is why Paulson was so concerned to save AIG, and to turn his back on Lehmans, where he had no stake.

    What is happening now around us, is a massive event, but not only economic. This is about power and control, and possibly an effort to do to Europe what was earlier done to South America.

    But this is a 2 edged sword, unsurprising when the subject is a superpower on the ropes, and taking reckless risks. Whatever might happen, might ultimately happen in a day. The dollar could implode in a day. All it might take is for even one of the medium sovereign funds with dollar investments, to rush for the exit, and it could trigger a stampede. Then it is a new world, and in the panic, will be the opportunity for traitors in government to push through God knows what decisions without due process, in order to ‘save us’.

  8. Hmm – the abiogenic fuel theory would of course change everything… It’s interesting that that chap’s ideas, and those of, for instance, Greg Palast on Iraq, doevtail quite neatly: that the “oil wars” have not been fought to sieze oil, or deny oil, or even to push up or push down prices, but rather to stablise prices in a zone that permits continued vast profit… And what do we see during this later stage of the CC? Oil prices falling quickly, already at their winter 2007 level, showing every sign of once again hitting the Iraq invasion era price of 60 bucks a barrel.

    I dunno. I like to avoid conspiracy – but when you have the world’s press, the republicans, the democracts, labour, tories, every national government including China all Russia ffs ALL saying the same thing…. I get suspicious.

  9. […] by smeddum on October 9, 2008 The Big Con and the Big Lie Posted in fury by Frank October 8, 2008 Tags: bbc, bilderberg, creditcrunch, lies, media, motherfuckingbbc, robertpeston, […]

  10. So, Frank, are you suggesting I should take my savings out of the bank and put them “under the mattress” since the government can’t possibly guarantee every one’s deposits if there is a run on all the banks?

  11. No Chekhov, I would say buy gold and/or silver.

  12. Frank,

    King Arthur, I seem to recall you spent half your reign waging civil war, and having been quite closely involved in reporting the wars in former yugoslavia, seeing photos and video the punters didn’t see, I can’t be blase about civil war. Our last one was the bloodiest British conflict ever, they Yanks’ was theirs.

    We talked here a while back about revolution – nice idea – but with no clear opposition, no clear objectives, no clear constituency, and no clear plan, it must be emphasised, the end result of any attempt would be, AT BEST, a squalid, multi-sided, civil war, like Sarajevo cubed.

    The only revolt that could possibly succeed in the UK, and come off cleanly, would be a military coup. And you would think – especially with talk of funding cuts, carriers cancelled, but never a reduction in the number of war, war, wars being fought, that they might be thinking of it…


    Thanks for the post, sometimes it’s good to sit back and think for a while.

    I appreciate your comments regarding your exposure to the atrocities of civil war, Sarajevo must have indeed been a frightening place. I can’t imagine the things you must have seen and heard. Or can I?

    What did the bodies look like?, were they just lying in the street, beaten, stabbed and dead, and for no other reason than not running with the herd, of for having different coloured skin, or for the biggest crime of all, having a different imaginary friend? Sometimes, yes sometimes lying in bed with a couple of shots to the head, mistaken for someone else.

    It must be hard on the families, seeing their sons and daughters killed in a so called fight for freedom. poorly trained, badly equipped, fighting and dying ultimately on a pack of lies and deceit.

    And the body parts, the heads, legs, arms and adornments, blown apart in the communal areas where ordinary people meet. Seeing and smelling pieces of ones nearest and dearest decorating the public transport system must be hell on earth.

    This country is broken, the system of government we the people employ, and that our political parties inhabit, is broken.

    The economy is shite, capitalism only works well for the rich, and is not fit for the purpose of running an economy for the benefit of the people.

    The nanny state is eroding the freedom’s on which we have based our case, every time we have been to war. In effect, we have nothing left to fight for.

    Our Foreign policy is outrageous. When did it become more important to make enemies than to make friends? Shouldn’t we be the good guys? When Iceland went bust, shouldn’t we have extended a hand of friendship, of help? Instead we resort to threats of legal action Making their job even harder. Ironic since London still sees itself as a leader in world finance, we were probably one of the causes of their problems in the first place.

    Civil war, as you rightly said, and history records, is an awful thing, people die. But that is history. We can do better.

    Someone needs to lift their head out of the stinking cesspool of fraud, lies and corruption that has become British politics, and make a stand. Can you see Broon or Cameroon doing it, Cleggy perhaps. No we have no leaders.

    When the bank re-possesses your house, your company goes bust, you have no money or credit to buy the basics for your family. The washing machine is broken and you cannot afford to replace it, and anything you do manage to earn is robbed by the government to pay for the lifestyles of the politicians and bankers, you are at rock bottom. Nothing left.

    But I have a positive character, I know that with everything gone, the only thing left is hope, and that hope is a good thing. Hope that the tide will turn, hope that society will come together and rebuild as a team. Hope that maybe out there is someone with the balls to stand up and be counted. Someone who can provide the motivation to the many many clever and skilled people, who at the moment are lost in a downward spiral of blame, insult and crisis.

    Your country is calling for help, I know you can hear it.

    October 15, 2008 11:49 AM

  13. King Arthur, I wasn’t out there, I worked for a couple of organisation that had people there, and also put together articles etc. So second hand exposure – talking to writers, photographers etc, and seeing the raw material. One photo in particualar but ummmm don’t really want to get into that.

    Anyway, your suggestions; well, of coruse we can have a better government, of course we can have better leaders, of course we can have decency alongside prosperity and a sense of national identify that’s wholesome. But to get from here, to there, we have to punch right throught he shit that currently occupies those slots.

    You think today’s establishment is just going to roll over and get out of the way? You think they’d even make a fair fight of it? Nope. There’d be war, proxy wars, false flag wars, the cultural wars we’re in now are just a start, the propaganda taught in schools and fed drip by drip into young heads… everything is designed for one purpose: to keep the people in power, in power.

  14. You may laugh at my naivety, but I’m only just starting to seek and read information like this. I feel like I’m waking up to the lies we’re told every single day.

  15. Hello frank.
    I feel your pain.
    Personally, I’m all raged out.
    Not one politician has a grasp of mortality. Not one.
    We don’t need bail outs, we need social reform.

    Anyhow, I’m going to the pub now.

    Keep up the good work.


  16. Hi Frank

    You said it all, 3 days ago l watched Goldman Sachs being reduced to a hold from a buy and it gapped around 3-400 pts, down, well what a 100pts to GS,
    the next day we get good news and it gaps up over 500pts.
    All the bankers worldwide are in on this scam together, between them they make Nick Leeson look like a naughty boy in a sweet shop, just one difference, no one will probably go to jail over this one.
    The worst is yet to come and it will be a bloodpath of proportions we cannot imagine.


Leave a comment

XHTML - You can use:<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>