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Old 08-31-2008, 08:48 AM
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Rickson Rickson is offline
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Quote:
Cities Debate Giving Away Public Infrastructure to Bankers
JENNY ANDERSON
The New York Times
August 29, 2008
Cleaning up road kill and maintaining runways may not sound like cutting-edge investments. But banks and funds with big money seem to think so.
Reeling from more exotic investments that imploded during the credit crisis, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, the Carlyle Group, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse are among the investors who have amassed an estimated $250 billion war chest — much of it raised in the last two years — to finance a tidal wave of infrastructure projects in the United States and overseas.
Their strategy is gaining steam in the United States as federal, state and local governments previously wary of private funds struggle under mounting deficits that have curbed their ability to improve crumbling roads, bridges and even airports with taxpayer money.
With politicians like Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of California warning of a national infrastructure crisis, public resistance to private financing may start to ease.
“Budget gaps are starting to increase the viability of public-private partnerships,” said Norman Y. Mineta, a former secretary of transportation who was recently hired by Credit Suisse as a senior adviser to such deals.
This fall, Midway Airport of Chicago could become the first to pass into the hands of private investors. Just outside the nation’s capital, a $1.9 billion public-private partnership will finance new high-occupancy toll lanes around Washington. This week, Florida gave the green light to six groups that included JPMorgan, Lehman Brothers and the Carlyle Group to bid for a 50- to 75 -year lease on Alligator Alley, a toll road known for sightings of sleeping alligators that stretches 78 miles down I-75 in South Florida.
Until recently, the use of private funds to build and manage large-scale American infrastructure assets was slow to take root. States and towns could raise taxes and user fees or turn to the municipal bond market.
Slowly the banks and multinational companies will own and control every facet of your life, Fascism I do believe it's called. Amerika, home of the sheeple.
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Old 08-31-2008, 10:15 AM
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I thought fascism involved the state owning stuff, not private corporations owning stuff.

Plus most Ron Paul supporting and Austrian economist worshiping anarcho-capitalists I know love the idea of private ownership of roads. I take it you only agree with some of their mantra?
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Old 08-31-2008, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George Orwell
It will be seen that, as used, the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless. In conversation, of course, it is used even more wildly than in print. I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Gandhi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley's broadcasts, Youth Hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else.

Yet underneath all this mess there does lie a kind of buried meaning. To begin with, it is clear that there are very great differences, some of them easy to point out and not easy to explain away, between the régimes called Fascist and those called democratic. Secondly, if ‘Fascist’ means ‘in sympathy with Hitler’, some of the accusations I have listed above are obviously very much more justified than others. Thirdly, even the people who recklessly fling the word ‘Fascist’ in every direction attach at any rate an emotional significance to it. By ‘Fascism’ they mean, roughly speaking, something cruel, unscrupulous, arrogant, obscurantist, anti-liberal and anti-working-class. Except for the relatively small number of Fascist sympathizers, almost any English person would accept ‘bully’ as a synonym for ‘Fascist’. That is about as near to a definition as this much-abused word has come.

But Fascism is also a political and economic system. Why, then, cannot we have a clear and generally accepted definition of it? Alas! we shall not get one — not yet, anyway. To say why would take too long, but basically it is because it is impossible to define Fascism satisfactorily without making admissions which neither the Fascists themselves, nor the Conservatives, nor Socialists of any colour, are willing to make. All one can do for the moment is to use the word with a certain amount of circumspection and not, as is usually done, degrade it to the level of a swearword
.
http://orwell.ru/library/articles/As.../english/efasc
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Old 08-31-2008, 10:51 AM
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Fascism as I understood it, is the aligning of state and private interests. In the days of Mousilini, the Italian government owned an estimated 70% of all businesses and was the dominant force in the economy, using force to thwart competition from non-state-owned companies.

In America, our fascism will come with large multi-national corporations as the dominant force, with the Government passing laws that do not benefit its people but only the dominant special interests. (oh wait, we already do that) The next step will be "agressive mergers and aquisitions" with forced militaristic takeovers over competition and dissenting marketing.
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Old 08-31-2008, 12:20 PM
ShebaPoe ShebaPoe is offline
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I think you can demonstrate mathematically that when every dollar is created by borrowing from a bank, and collateral is pledged for the loans, that the bank will end up with all of the physical asssets eventually.

It might be possible to avoid this if the economy grew faster than the prevailing rate of interest, but this almost never happens. Prime rate is about 5%, and the economy rarely grows anywhere near that fast. Since the true rate of increase in money supply should be the rate of growth of production, the economy is actually falling behind. If we apply the "rule of 72" with a 5% interest rate, the money supply must double every 14 years just to pay interest to banks on existing dollars. Yet the productive capacity of the economy does not grow at this pace.

So it really should come as no surprise that a country (and its municipalities, and many its people) that uses debt to create its money will find itself working for its creditors, or, in the case of many homeowners, surrendering its assets. The question is, what sort of government will be required to support this creditor-debtor relationship? I'm thinking it won't be a nice one.
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