An open letter to Congress: February 2014

 Dear Congress –

A little over one year ago, in early January 2013, you were speaking about progressive action to improve the economy and reduce the national debt.

Fourteen months have passed, and little, if anything, has changed.

You do not have any type of a credible economic plan to help restore ‘financial health’ to American families and main street America, reduce citizen dependence on government  – and improve the prospects for controlling the national debt.

According to a January 2014 RealtyTrac report, “Total foreclosure filings for 2013, including notices of default, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions, were reported on 1.36 million properties…” 

While those numbers have improved from the immediately preceding down years, “one in every 96 homes” reported “at least one foreclosure filing in 2013.,.“

“…The foreclosure threat continues to hang over the heads of many homeowners.  In December, 9.3 million properties, or 19% of all homes were reported to be  ‘deeply underwater,’ meaning borrowers owed at least 25% more on their mortgage than their homes were worth.”

Additional recent headlines:                                                                                             “More than 11 million Americans spend half their income on rent”                               “Nearly Half of America Lives Paycheck to Paycheck”                                                    “Real Disposable Income Plummets Most in 40 Years”                                                     “1.4 Million Jobless Officially Get the Emergency Claims Ax”                                     “Record 20% of Households on Food Stamps in ’13”                                                       Wall Street Advisor: Actual Unemployment is 37.2%…

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Note the current fruit of your ‘status quo’ policies:                                                      Sluggish economy                                                                                                          Rising poverty                                                                                                                Record high levels of citizen dependence on government                                             Rising national debt levels

Your stunted, conventional thinking in addressing our economic crisis is inexcusable… and the results are utterly pathetic.

Here is an economic plan for your consideration.  It is the only true economic acceleration plan in America today:

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The Leviticus 25 Plan 2014 – The $64,000 Solution December 2013 – Updated version: The Leviticus 25 Plan – An Economic Acceleration Plan for America 2014 (289)

The Leviticus 25 Plan is a dynamic economic initiative providing direct liquidity benefits for American families, while at the same time scaling back the role of government in managing and controlling the affairs of citizens. It is a comprehensive plan with long-term economic and social benefits for citizens and government.

The inspiration for this plan is based upon Biblical principles set forth in the Book of Leviticus, principles tendering direct economic liberties to the people – a principle inscribed on the very Liberty Bell which declared the United States to be a free and independent nation.

Merrill Lynch & Co, Inc – #11 recipient of Fed’s ‘secret liquidity lifelines’

Excerpts from Bloomberg  Nov 28, 2011:

“Merrill Lynch & Co.’s stock surged 30 percent after the New York-based securities firm announced an agreement to sell itself to Bank of America Corp. in September 2008. The deal didn’t stop the firm’s liquidity from shrinking by about $27 billion in three days that month, according to internal Federal Reserve Bank of New York documents. In the ensuing weeks, the firm drew as much as $62.1 billion from the Federal Reserve’s Primary Dealer Credit Facility, Term Securities Lending Facility and single-tranche open market operations. After the takeover closed on Jan. 1, 2009, Charlotte, North Carolina-based Bank of America let Merrill’s Fed loans roll off while increasing its own liquidity draws from the central bank.”

Peak amount of debt on 09/26/2008:  $62.1B

A little more background information – on some of the investment practices engaged in by ML during the several years immediately preceding the $62.1B secret bailout: 

DealBook-NYTimes reported on January 25, 2011:                                                       “Merrill Lynch Settles S.E.C. Fraud Case”                                                                        Merrill Lynch “ agreed to pay $10 million on Tuesday to settle fraud accusations by securities regulators.”                                                                                                        “The Securities and Exchange Commission had accused Merrill of fraud, saying that the firm misused private information from its customers to place trades on its own behalf and that the firm repeatedly charged its customers trading fees without their knowledge.” ___________________________________

The Leviticus 25 Plan provides provides U.S. citizens with the same critical access to liquidity that was provided to the likes of Merrill Lynch at the height of the financial crisis.

The ‘minimum wage’ increase vs The Leviticus 25 Plan

The ‘minimum wage’ pay increase is gaining traction again, as it does every election year.  It can be a hot political football.

Minimum wage increases are touted as “critical” for helping those Americans living in poverty to better survive.

The primary benefit:  it delivers a pittance of an hourly pay increase to low-wage workers.

What the minimum wage increases do not do is make any meaningful improvement in the lives of the working poor.

They do not create new jobs.  In fact, the evidence shows that these minimum wage increases actually cost jobs, particularly teenagers seeking entry-level jobs.

Minimum wage pay increases do nothing to help move people ‘up’ and off from social programs.  They, in effect, help keep ‘the poor’ – poor.  And dependent upon government.

In light of the trillions of dollars in ‘free money’ that the Federal Reserve and big government have doled out to major banking interests over the past 5 years, the minimum wage increases making current headlines in America – are nothing less than a supreme insult.                                                                                      …………………………………..

The Leviticus 25 Plan offers preferable outcomes.

It delivers meaningful benefits to the working poor – and everyone else up the income scale.  And it does make consequential improvements in their lives.

It generates powerful job-creating dynamics in the economy.

The Leviticus 25 Plan ‘boosts’ people up from poverty and out of serfdom. 

No more ‘feasting’ on crumbs from the hands of politicians and their social program enticements.

The Leviticus 25 Plan rewards work, industriousness and wise decision-making.

The Leviticus 25 Plan 2014 – The $64,000 Solution                                               December 2013  Updated version: The Leviticus 25 Plan – An Economic Acceleration Plan for America 2014 (254)

 

 

Barclays, LIBOR, and the Fed’s “secret liquidity lifelines”

Barclays Plc, a major multinational banking and financial services company headquartered in London, received a lot of ‘liquidity’ from the Federal Reserve as the banking crisis deepened in late 2008:                                                                                                                                 “Data show that the London-based bank borrowed $64.9 billion from the Fed on Dec. 4, 2008, more than two months after it agreed to buy the North American unit of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. in a bankruptcy auction. The London-based bank was still borrowing more than $40 billion from the Fed as late as June 2009, nine months after the Lehman deal closed.”   (Source:  Bloomberg  Nov 28, 2011 )

This is the same Barclays that was busted a couple years ago for manipulating LIBOR rates in a global rate-rigging scandal.                                                                                            Source: “The Rotten Heart of Finance” – The Economist July 7, 2012 )

LIBOR, the London Interbank Offered Rate, is the average interest rate (estimate) that leading London banks would pay, at a given point in time, if they were to borrow money from other banks.

Barclays ‘rate-manipulation’ scheme skinned U.S. homeowners out of “hundreds of millions, if not billions” of dollars by consistently, artificially popping the LIBOR rate up on the first day of the month – the day when interest rates were reset for ARMs (adjustable rate mortgages).  Affected homeowners got ‘ripped.’

LIBOR rate-rigging also cost municipalities across the U.S. billions of dollars in municipal bond costs by artificially ‘tilting’ rates against the interest rate swaps that had been purchased by municipalities, such as Baltimore, to hedge the bonds.

Barclays was in the news again recently (ZeroHedge 2-9-14):  “Barclays’ Busted For Stealing, Selling Confidential Financial Data Of Thousands Of Clients.”

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So … here we have a major multinational bank, Barclays, receiving billions of dollars from the Federal Reserve’s ‘secret liquidity lifelines’… ripping off U.S. citizens (and others around the world) in a scandalous rate-rigging operation.

Barclays Capital is also one of the Federal Reserve’s current Primary Dealers – enjoying a ‘special relationship’ with the Fed.

It is time for U.S. citizens to enjoy a ‘special relationship’ of our own with the Federal Reserve, since they are playing around with our Dollars – and the future value of those Dollars.

Again – U.S. citizens deserve nothing less than the same access to liquidity that the Federal Reserve provided to Barclays and other major banking interests during the banking crisis.

The Leviticus 25 Plan

Main Street America – 2014 update after 5 years of ‘economic recovery’

After five years of the Federal Reserve’s  ‘dollar debasing,’ pump-priming liquidity gambits,  pump out generously through major banking interests (domestic and foreign)… and government-managed ‘stimulus programs’ and massive social program expansion —  how has main street America been faring..?      

Not well.  ZeroHedge 2/01/14 reports:

Half of America is living “paycheck to paycheck.”

“While stocks are still near record highs and the inventory-stuffed picture of economic growth for the US ticks up to its fastest pace in 2 years, Time reports that a study (below) by the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) shows nearly half of Americans are living in a state of “persistent economic insecurity,” that makes it “difficult to look beyond immediate needs and plan for a more secure future.”

And – retail chain store sales (year-over-year) are in the midst of a third ‘down-leg’ (2009-14).    ZeroHedge 2/04/14 :

Of course this should be no surprise when disposable income is collapsing.

… while stocks (S&P 500) are doing nicely.

The money and ‘favors’ have been flowing to Wall Street, but not Main Street.

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We need a qualitatively new economic recovery plan – to bring U.S. citizens and Main Street America back into the game.

The Leviticus 25 Plan.

Morgan Stanley – #1 recipient of Fed’s ‘secret liquidity lifelines’

As the banking crisis intensified in the Fall of 2008, with major banking institutions assuming, or on the verge of assuming, the classical ‘snorkel’ position (aka ‘underwater’ status), the Federal Reserve ran quickly to the rescue with secret liquidity lifelines” (Bloomberg 8-22-11).

The Fed substantially eased some important collateral rules for banks, “meaning that banks that could once borrow only against sound collateral, like Treasury bills or AAA-rated corporate bonds, could now borrow against pretty much anything – including some of the mortgage-backed sewage that got us into this mess in the first place….  ‘All of a sudden, banks were allowed to post absolute [expletive deleted] to the Fed’s balance sheet,’ [according to] the manager of the prominent hedge fund.” (Source: Bailout Hustle, Matt Taibbi).

The Federal Reserve invented various “facilities” to fire-hose liquidity out to the big banks and big brokerage firms, including these:

Primary Dealers’ Credit Facility                                                   

Term Securities Lending Facility 

Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program

Commercial Paper Funding                                                         

Term Auction Facility       

Public Private Investment Program

And, here we go – from the top (Bloomberg  Nov 28, 2011) :

Top recipient – Morgan Stanley                                               Morgan Stanley, facing a crisis of confidence after the fall of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., got a $9 billion injection from Japanese bank Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. and agreed to take a $10 billion bailout from the U.S. Treasury to shore up capital. As hedge-fund customers pulled funds out of the New York-based firm, it plugged the hole with $107.3 billion of secret loans from the Federal Reserve’s Primary Dealer Credit Facility and Term Securities Lending Facility, set up earlier in the year to supply brokerage firms with emergency financing.”

Peak amount of Debt on 9/29/2008:  $107B
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The Leviticus 25 Plan does not seek to ‘interrupt’ or reverse any of the special relationships that have developed in the Fed’s financial sphere.  It only seeks to level the playing field – by providing U.S. citizens the same access to direct liquidity flows that  the big banks enjoyed ‘in their time of need.’

The Leviticus 25 Plan proposes one additional upgrade to the Fed’s liquidity lines:      U.S. Citizens Credit Facility.

 

The Leviticus 25 Plan: Hands-down, the best (and only) economic acceleration plan anywhere… to get America moving again – and restore freedom.

When you consider all of the Federal Reserve’s liquidity transfers, credit guarantees, mortgage-backed debt purchases, agency (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Sallie Mae) debt purchases, central bank liquidity swap lines, outright purchases of foreign debt……when you consider all of that (and other measures not outlined here),  The Leviticus 25 Plan is the greatest deal of the century.

The Federal Reserve provided massive liquidity infusions to financial entities whose high-risk profiles pulled them underwater.  The liquidity provided was nothing less than a ‘draw’ on the future purchasing power of the U.S. Dollar for millions of American, a ‘tax’ on Americans for decades to come.

The ultimate goal of the Fed liquidity transfers and credit guarantees was to make the big players in the financial world “healthy.”

The Leviticus 25 Plan provides for massive liquidity transfers direct to American citizens. The ultimate goal – to make American families financially “healthy.”

These liquidity transfers to American families will generate wide-scale debt elimination. Millions of families across America – debt free.

Dynamic efficiencies will emerge in the economy with the individual allocation of resources (vs government allocation of resources) — in all aspects of daily life, everything from healthcare spending to food and housing to education.

The Leviticus 25 Plan will generate healthy tax revenue flows at all levels of government – without raising taxes. 

The Plan rewards industriousness, hard work, and wise decision-making for all Americans. 

 And finally, The Leviticus 25 Plan immediately balances the budget, and it pays for itself over a 10-15 year period.

The Leviticus 25 Plan 2014 – The $64,000 Solution                                              December 2013 – Updated versionThe Leviticus 25 Plan – An Economic Acceleration Plan for America 2014 (278)

Deutsche Bank: “global debt monster…[but] too late to change course now”

Central banks must continue to ‘support’ markets.

“It’s arguably too late to change course now without huge consequences.”                          – Jim Reid, Strategist, Deutsche Bank,  Accessed from:ZeroHedge 2/3/2014

“We’ve created a global debt monster that’s now so big and so crucial to the workings of the financial system and economy that defaults have been increasingly minimised by uber aggressive policy responses. It’s arguably too late to change course now without huge consequences. This cycle perhaps started with very easy policy after the 97/98 EM crises thus kick starting the exponential rise in leverage across the globe.

It’s been many, many years since free markets decided the fate of debt markets and bail-outs have generally had to get bigger and bigger.

This sounds negative but the reality is that for us it means that central banks have little option but to keep high levels of support for markets for as far as the eye can see and defaults will stay artificially low.“                             ………………………………………………..

Interpretation:  For the U.S., more Fed printing (balance sheet expansion) ahead to prevent defaults by financial entities.

And that means more erosion of the Dollar (vs hard assets)…  and persistent loss of purchasing power of the U.S. Dollar ahead for U.S. citizens.

It’s time to think outside the box.   And it all starts with massive debt reduction at the family level in America – and restoring economic liberty.

The Leviticus 25 Plan