Monday, October 20, 2008

Pen Meets Paper, Oct 20, 2008

Pen Meets Paper
Opinion by Helge Nome
Quick fixes and instant gratification are hallmarks of contemporary society. “Fix me up Doc” (“so that I can continue to indulge in my bad habits”) is an all too common attitude. Free health care is taken as a given and the right to indulge in unbridled gambling, in the casino or on the stock market, is a God given principle. The list goes on as exemplified by monster trucks used to go to the corner store for a snack.
Noah would most definitely recognize the patterns and would likely be busy building a new ark at this time. (Look for large home made sailboats in back yards and tell me about it if you see one. I have some chickens that would like a ride).
In order for the world to get back to “normal” again, there has to be a major shift in attitude by an awful lot of people. “Education” just doesn't cut it. Most of us simply have to hit the wall before we change our ways. And for many, that is just a temporary change. Before we know it, we slip back into the old ways again. Dieting is a typical example of this phenomenon.
I am flabbergasted over how pure greed jumps into the driver's seat when people are confronted with “get rich quick” schemes (“Invest $5000 and get $50,000 back”). There is no thought for who pays for it at the end of the day as long as “I” can get “My” share of the pie. Casino gambling, in particular, is a good example: Community groups are happy to waste a night of sleep to give legitimacy to an activity that is highly predatory on people who can ill afford to lose their shirts. Taking $20,000 home for a “good cause” is more important than the social problems created by this form of gambling.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Pen Meets Paper, Oct 6, 2008

Pen Meets Paper
Opinion by Helge Nome
The financial crisis of October, 2008 is looking more and more like the one in October 1929 which was the herald of the Great Depression. I have spent some time reading about what happened in Alberta during that time in an excellent book series entitled “Alberta in the 20th Century”edited by Ted Byfield. Just like now, most people had their heads in the sand following the stock crash on October 28 in 1929. They didn't see any particular connection between that event and what would happen to grain prices in the following months and years when farmers went bankrupt in droves from a combination of low prices, drought and pestilence in the form of grasshoppers that even ate dry wood.
And while we are somewhat more aroused at the present time by extensive media coverage of events to the south of us, and around the globe, most of us are woefully unaware of the prospect that we, yes, we right here in Alberta, including Rocky Mountain House, Clearwater County and Caroline, are going to be hit a lot harder than most Americans are. The energy boom we have experienced in the last few years is turning into a mega bust with rapidly falling demand for energy across the whole world. This is being caused by the credit freeze brought about by the excessive and frivolous creation of worthless commercial paper by the financial system.
A huge proportion of all the high paying jobs in the oil and gas sector are going to disappear like mist before the morning sun, leaving large numbers of able people unemployed and distressed. The energy bubble has burst and we are going from riches to rags in short order.
By the middle of 1930 there were a lot of angry workers in the street creating a potential for civil unrest and desperate measures were put in place to prevent a festering cancer from spreading: Men were required to move from place to place in order to collect welfare payments; the rationale being that they should be willing to move to where the jobs were, and not sit around and wait for a job to fall into their laps at home. Thus was born the “Hobo”, catching free rides on freight trains going across the landscape. Labor boot camps were also created, run along military and prison camp lines. These became breeding grounds for frustration and resentment and perfect training grounds for communist agitators.
Then, as now, bankers were blamed for the stock market crash and the suffering that followed, but is it really that simple? Aren't we all somewhat to blame for indulging in speculation and gluttony, along with the bankers? If you were able to sell your house for twice of what you paid for it, did you refuse? Did you worry about the poor sucker who would be stuck with it when the price came down, as it inevitably had to? I believe that most of us were carried along on a wave of greed facilitated and encouraged by people who ultimately plan to gain from the process by grabbing control of the system by using public fear to facilitate the process. This is already happening as central banks, financed by taxpayers, are shifting huge amounts of capital into the hands of the people that helped wreck the financial system.
It may be useful to know that U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson used to be the CEO of Goldman Sachs; one of the world's most powerful banks (who is doing very nicely, thank you) and that our own Mark Carney, born in Fort Smith, NWT, and currently the Governor of the Bank of Canada, worked for thirteen years in Goldman Sachs branches across the world prior to his present appointment.
And working quietly in the background, facilitating massive mergers and acquisitions across national boundaries, is the Rothschild banking empire which is more that 200 years old (

These organizations have a vision of the world that make nation/states subordinate entities to what, in effect, becomes an international aristocracy, to whom we all have to remove our hats and bow gracefully. And we will be required to supply them with cannon fodder, in the form of our children, for their conflicts with those who refuse to be subordinated. Knowing this, I am closely tracking military developments in the Middle East, and elsewhere on my blog These developments are not reported in the mainstream media until a major incident occurs. Right now, there is a concentration of some 10,000 Syrian troops near Tripoli, in the northern part of Lebanon. There are also major naval movements underway on the earth's oceans as the cold war heats up again.