[To] conspiracy theorists of the world, believers in the hidden hands of the Rothschilds and the Masons and the Illuminati, we skeptics owe you an apology. You were right. The players may be a little different, but your basic premise is correct: The world is a rigged game.
We found this out in recent months, when a series of related corruption stories spilled out of the financial sector, suggesting the world’s largest banks may be fixing the prices of, well, just about everything.
This flowed from the keyboard of Matt Taibbi, the curmudgeon and free lance writer (emphasis on free!) who has written widely on corruption in places where the mainstream media fear to tread. You may remember his article in Rolling Stone, “The Great Bubble Machine” in which he described Goldman Sachs as “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.”
Or his “Invasion of the Home Snatchers” which he subtitled “How foreclosure courts are helping big banks screw over homeowners.” Or his “Why is Nobody Freaking Out About the LIBOR Banking Scandal?” that rapidly became required reading for those interested in learning how international bankers manipulate interest rates for their own benefit.
This could be his best ever, and just might be his last: “Everything Is Rigged: The Biggest Price-Fixing Scandal Ever.” He ferociously and deliberately attacks with his own particular vitriolic and incisive brand of venom the international derivatives market – an almost unimaginably huge market which Global Research estimated back in May 2012 at $1,200 trillion – 20 times larger than the economic output of the entire world – which is being manipulated by Barclays, UBS, the Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, and the Royal Bank of Scotland, among others.
I can’t prove a conspiracy here, nor does Taibbi in his 10-page article. But he does summarize the markets these manipulators are controlling and what they are doing:
That includes the markets for gold (where prices are set by five banks in a Libor-ish teleconferencing process that, ironically, was created in part by N M Rothschild & Sons) and silver (whose price is set by just three banks), as well as benchmark rates in numerous other commodities – jet fuel, diesel, electric power, coal, you name it.
The problem in each of these markets is the same: We all have to rely upon the honesty of companies like Barclay’s (already caught and fined $453 million for rigging Libor) or JPMorgan Chase (paid a $228 million settlement for rigging municipal-bond auctions) or UBS (fined a collective $1.66 billion for both muni-bond rigging and Libor manipulation) to faithfully report the real prices of things like interest rates, swaps, currencies and commodities…
The only reason this problem has not received the attention it deserves is because the scale of it is so enormous that ordinary people simply cannot see it. It’s not just stealing by reaching a hand into your pocket and taking out money, but stealing in which banks can hit a few keystrokes and magically make whatever’s in your pocket worth less. This is corruption at the molecular level of the economy, Space Age stealing – and it’s only just coming into view.
I hope Taibbi lives long enough to get into the political side of things. Now that would be something to see.