'And now the end is near,' goes the lyric from Sinatra's, My Way. The song popped into my head this morning for some reason as I rode out a dose of insomnia to the tune of Sky reporters commenting on the overnight news that Credit Rating Agency, Standard's and Poor's had downgraded America's credit status to AA+, removing its triple A rating for the first time in American History.
In justifying the move, the Agency stated that the 'downgrade reflects the view that the effectiveness, stability, and predictability of American policy-making and political institutions have weakened at a time of ongoing fiscal and economic challenges to a degree more than we envisioned when we assigned a negative outlook to the rating on April 18, 2011.'
I don't think many could argue with that. And the Americans should not be too despondent. Ireland's status is near Junk. But it's the political commentary behind the downgrading that once again shows up the distinct lack of leadership, on both sides of the Atlantic foam. The Market response on Monday will tell more. But nothing suggests anything but a continuance into an economic hell that nobody seems to want us out of.
Not only is the US in trouble, China is now calling for the dollar to be removed as the world's stable currency and events in Europe threaten the nations involved in the single currency. Italy have vowed to implement Austerity measures of historic proportions on its citizens in a move to try and stabilize market reaction against them for a stagnant economy. But it is doomed to failure on a number of fronts. Italians, like the French, like their standard of life. Good luck taking it away from them.
EU leaders, most of whom are on Holidays are keeping in the loop with each other via conference and telephone calls. Cheaper on the tax payer I guess.
The main problem is the markets are screaming austerity and when it does not go far enough it screams some more. It's like one of those hostage situations of old. Austerity will not get any economy moving again, yet this is the call? Why?
Ireland this week announced another rise of people signing on the live register and when weighed against emigration the proof lies in the pudding. So how can anyone see any light at the end of the tunnel when those charged to lead are not the real leaders after all. The governments of the world have allowed for a state of play where bankers are allowed go unaccountable for heaping misery on people through any means they wish to invent and are allowed that free reign by elected officials put on a ballot paper for us by political parties who get more and more capitalistic with each passing day, right or left, despite the escalating reality that Capitalism in its present form has failed and failed catastrophically.
There is little or no divide in the political spectrum anymore. You get the feeling for that based on a number of things. When, say for instance, a left party like Labour in Ireland go to bed with a right wing party like Fine Gael you know the fix is in. When probably the most powerful man in the world, Ben Bernanke 'serves' under both a Republican and Democratic President you know the fix is in.
Possible Presidential candidate Ron Paul once said of Bernanke 'there is something fishy about the head of the world's most powerful government bureaucracy, one that is involved in a full-time counterfeiting operation to sustain monopolistic financial cartels, and the world’s most powerful central planner, who sets the price of money worldwide, proclaiming the glories of capitalism.'
When you take the relationships highlighted in Capitalism- A Love Story you know the fix is in. When you know that JFK took one from the Knoll, you know the fix is in. You know when you research all the previous American Presidents who met with the same fate and their views towards bankers and banking methods, you know the fix is in.
The wider connotations is none of this is taught in our educational system. Thinking for yourself is rarely encouraged. And perhaps through ignorance we are all complicit to some degree and will probably only care when it is too late.
If there was any real will on the behalf of world leaders for the betterment of mankind all these problems could be gone tomorrow with debt forgiveness and longer terms to pay back outstanding debt after that. I'm sure those who play with digital money and profit from the Interest on that while manipulating governments the world over would not want that. It's a disturbing feature of modern day society when sociopaths run the show. It's hard to describe them as anything else when they have such a lack of empathy for all those suffering the World over so the practice of greed can continue. I read about the Great Depression following the Crash of 1929 and if some accelerated radical thinking on an economic and political level does not come into play very soon, barely a century later we could be back in the midst of one again.
The words of My Way were given to me by my Dad on the morning I boarded a plane for New York back in 1999 for the Summer. Best gift I ever got off anyone. It's an honorable thing to do, to give a child that sort of freedom of scope even if they are delivered via lyrics sang by an old swooner.
''For what is a man? What has he got?
If not himself - Then he has naught.
To say the things he truly feels
And not the words of one who kneels.
The record shows I took the blows
And did it my way.'' - Paul Anka