Armstrong Economics Blog/Uncategorized
RE-Posted from Jul 28, 2014 by Martin Armstrong
The battle of class warfare has been raging for thousands of years. This is nothing new and it has tended to end is sheer disaster without exception. Basil II (b 958; 976–1025) really set the decline and fall of the Byzantine Empire in motion by engaging in such class-warfare to win popularity. Just as government desperately needs money today and are going after anyone they suspect has money, the same trend has happened countless times before.
As a result of the failures of his immediate predecessors, Basil II found himself with a serious problem at the outset of his reign. Basil’s laws protected small agrarian property owners and lowered their taxes while imposing what was known as the Allelengyou system whereby he made the rich pay taxes that anyone else could not afford. He only accomplished impoverishing the rich and the poor felt they no longer really needed to produce and the whole thing spiraled downward. By imposing such taxation he discouraged investment and as such the economy continued to shrink. He caused capital to simply hoard and not investment because of the high taxation rates.
The Byzantine Empire under Basil II probably had a population of about 18 million people. By 1025, Basil II (with an annual revenue of 7,000,000 nomismata) was able to amass 14,400,000 nomismata (or 200,000 pounds of gold) for the Imperial treasury due to his abusive tax management.
To gain military support, Basil made the decision to offer the hand of his sister Anna to Vladimir I of Kiev in exchange. This led to the Christianization of the Ukrainian Rus (Russians). The Kievan Rus thus became within the Byzantine cultural and religious tradition that still prevails to this day – Greek orthodox.
Therefore, raising taxes to the point that government discourages investment has ALWAYS been the kiss of death. This is the greatest problem in Europe right now and Obama is looking for any excuse to raise taxes sharply. These people have NEVER done any analysis of the consequences of such policies and there is unlikely to ever emerge such reason to prevent the crash and burn
Armstrong Economics Blog/Politics
Re-Posted Aug 8, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
Judicial Watch has filed a letter of intent that reflects a very serious problem in California voting. Eleven California counties posted more votes for Hillary than the population. We are looking at massive voter fraud in California that could serious rock the nation when we consider that if we eliminate California, Trump won the majority of the vote everywhere else. This is not about supporting Trump. That is long since done. This is about going forward. Can any election be trusted any more?
If we can buy goods online in a secure manner, we can also vote on line. Even those who do not have a computer posses usually a smart phone which can also be used to vote. For those people who do not have either, then they can go to the public library or town hall to vote. Voting online will eliminate voter fraud for you cannot vote without a Social Security card. Plain and simple.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Corruption
Re-Posted Aug 8, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
The retail sector has been stagnant and most people are blaming AMAZON. A closer look is really required rather than the typical superficial analysis. Today, online sales represent only 8.5% of total retail sales. Amazon comes in at $80 billion in sales, but this merely amounts to just 1.5% of total U.S. retail sales, since 2016 total retail sales were around $5.5 trillion. What John McCain did to kill the repeal of Obamacare is devastating to the economy. The Democrats refuse to review what they have done and cannot see past their ego that Obamacare is destroy the economy.
The health-care inflation is the greatest rising cost to everyone and the proliferation of high-deductible plans has devastated Millennials. Some are paying $300 a month yet have $3,000 deductibles. In effect, the cost of health-care has been one huge fraud that is enriching the insurance companies who are major contributors to the Democrats. Obamacare has drastically increased consumer direct health-care costs and further chipped away at discretionary dollars far more than AMAZON. Health-care spending in the U.S. is $3.3 trillion, and even a 3% rise in costs would be close to $100 billion. With total retail sales at $5.5 trillion, heath-care now consumes 60% of retail sales and it is retail sales that are the backbone of the US economy that is holding up the entire world economy. What John McCain has done is far worse than anyone in the media is even contemplating.
While politics just basks in the corruption and the Democrats will not review what they have done, from 2018 to 2021, the future is looking darker and darker. Heath-care is single-handedly destroying the entire world economy.
Armstrong Economics Blog/The Hunt for Taxes
Re-Posted Aug 4, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
Many cities around the world are now introducing facial recognition into their cameras which monitor the streets. In other words, the government will know who and where you are. New York City is introducing this technology. This is by no means about terrorism. It is being employed to find anyone accused of any crime and that will include tax avoidance. In fact, facial recognition technology in Britain has been employed and they made their first arrest using this technology. They already have some 500,000 people’s faces in their database. Under the protest of data protectors in Germany, they too have begun a test run for the facial recognition detection by video camera in Berlin. The systems of three manufacturers are to be tried out for face recognition.
Video surveillance is claimed to be an important contribution toward greater security by helping to deter and assist in the detection of terrorism which is the excuse. The problem is that the application is for everything and not simply terrorists. Years ago when I had a parking ticket in London I had not paid when just a tourist, upon returning to Britain at customs I was pulled over and had to pay the ticket before entering. The same is being done in many other countries. Add to this facial recognition and you will see that it is not profitable to employ all this expense for terrorists. They will be looking to use it for all offenses.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Rule of Law
Re-Posted Aug 3, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
We have a very serious problem with Congress. Their actions in far too many ways is displaying (1) a total disregard for international law, and (2) a clear arrogance that they will punish foreigners for not obeying US law outside the territorial jurisdiction of the United States. What if Germany passed a law to punish Americans for criticizing something in Germany from within the United States? Would that not be outrageous?
Congress has been on a path of IMPERIALISM since the Obama Administration and it began with taxes. Even John McCain supported a law which thankfully failed that would have required every business to collect the sales tax of every state and remit it to them monthly. You cannot imagine how that would have destroyed small business with legal and accounting fees subjecting them to outrageous penalties for a single mistake. Then came FATCA. Congress has single-handedly destroyed the ability of American small business to grow internationally. They assumed that if an American had any account outside the USA it was to hide money. Since Congress did not trust the people to pay taxes, they imposed harsh penalties upon any foreign institution that did not REPORT to the United States what any American was doing overseas. An American can no longer open offices overseas for no institution will accept a business account from an American no matter how legitimate because if they FAIL to report what the American is doing, the institution;s assets in the United States can be seized by the government. The risk is far too high so no American or dual citizen can now open a bank account in Europe or Asia reducing American economic expansion.
Now the Russian sanctions are effectively an all out economic war. Once again, Congress has taken an imperialist view and will punish any foreign company doing business in the United States if they also do business with Russia. This is beyond a trade war – it is wholesale economic war which also took place during the 1930s that set in motion World War II. The French disagreed with merging Germany and Austria so they began shorting the Austrian bonds. When Germany tried to support Austria, the French turned against Germany in the financial markets shorting their bonds. Britain came in to try to support Germany and the French began shorting the British gilts. The net result was World War II began in 1931 when country after country was forced off the gold standard defaulting on their national debts. The arrogance of the American Congress is no different than the French actions in 1931.
Europe is now threatening the US with counter-measures because of its sharper Russian sanctions, which could also hit German companies. Congress is attempting to dictate to non-American companies punishing them for doing business with Russia and this is simply unlawfully violating international law. The American Congress cannot punish foreign companies because they are doing business in another country. Congress has moved far beyond a trade war of simply tariffs. This is an economic war that can set in motion the next MONETARY CRISIS just as the French set in motion the MONETARY CRISIS of 1931.
Russia is currently reacting with a massive expulsion wave against US diplomats to the US Congress’s tightening of sanctions against the country and is rightly doing so. President Vladimir Putin announced in an interview that 755 US diplomats had to leave the country by September 1st. The Russian Foreign Ministry announced that the number of employees at the US embassy and consulates in Russia should fall to 455 by the end of August. At the same time, Putin retained further retaliatory measures for the future, and was skeptical about an imminent improvement in relations between the two countries. Congress has simply lost its mind.
Congress is regularly violating International Law and unfortunately, it has refused to submit jurisdiction to any international court. The likelihood of the US Supreme Court overruling FATCA or this new round of Russian Sanction is about nil. Congress’ actions show the total IGNORANCE of what is at stake and what the American Revolution was all about. The reason the Congress cannot compel foreign entities to comply with US law outside the United States is called TERRITORIAL JURISDICTION, which was born with the American Revolution. No nation can sanction another outside its jurisdiction and then demand that all other countries obey its law – that is IMPERIALISM.
The Founding Fathers knew very well what they were doing when the established Jurisdictional Law. For you see, “JURISDICTION” was different before the American Revolution. You were the PROPERTY of the king. If you killed someone while on vacation in Paris from England, the French were NOT allowed to punish you. They had to send you back to your king who owned you telling him what you did and ONLY he could punish you since you were his property.
Then comes the American Revolution against monarchy. This presented a HUGE problem legally. What if you were on vacation from France and killed someone in New York? If Americans did not have a king and you were a FREE citizen not belonging to a king here, how would they deal with the problem? Did they send you back to your king because he claimed he “owned” you when we claimed we were FREE individuals?
The subject of law and jurisdiction was considered deeply by the Founding Fathers and what emerged was human rights not the rights of monarchs. It was decided that the laws of the United States must apply to everyone while they were here and nobody would be sent back to a king they did not recognize. Thus, what emerged was TERRITORIAL JURISDICTION. With the death of monarchy and the rise in the respect for the dignity of man, the laws of nations were to secure the rights, liberties, privileges and protection of ALL inhabitants within the TERRITORIAL JURISDICTION of the sovereign state. This fundamental change in the focus of rights of the monarch to that of the individual is reflected in Madison’s Report on the Virginia Resolutions (1800) (4 Elliot’s Debates 556). It was the American Revolution that changed international law establishing for the first time Jurisdictional Law predicated upon human rights. Congress’ actions with FATCA and now the Russian sanction demonstrates that they are no different from the monarchy of old and place their desires first above human rights.
The emergence of the nation-state in Europe and the growth of the doctrine of absolute territorial sovereignty changed the nature of extraterritorial rights or international law. No longer were strangers to be denied the advantages of local law. Indeed, territorial sovereignty meant the exercise of sovereignty over all residents within the borders of the state, and thus is it utterly UNCONSTITUTIONAL for the States to impose ANY obligation upon anyone outside its TERRITORY to comply with its own laws even regarding their own citizens. Congress tried to defeat the constitution regarding the detainees at Guantanamo Bay arguing that they were not within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States. On June 12, 2008, the Supreme Court ruled against the U.S. government in cases brought by foreign nationals challenging their detention at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba military facility. A five-justice majority in Boumediene v. Bush held that the Military Commissions Act of 2006 (MCA) to deny the application of rights to Guantanamo Bay violated the U.S. constitutional right of the detainees to meaningful habeas corpus review by federal civilian judges. According to the Court, the Constitution prevents the government from barring detainees from rigorous habeas review and instead substituting military fact-finding followed only by a limited right of review in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Notably, the Supreme Court did not decide which specific habeas review procedures are required by the Constitution, but instead sent the cases back to the federal district court to litigate that and related issues. The four dissenting justices would have upheld the constitutionality of the MCA’s withdrawal of habeas jurisdiction.
The in 2004, the Supreme Court reversed itself avoiding constitutional review limiting it to statutory construction in a very obvious rejection of the Constitution. In Rasul v. Bush (2004), the Supreme Court reversed on very narrow grounds the holding that U.S. courts have jurisdiction under a federal habeas statute to hear the detainees’ lawsuits. “Considering that the [habeas] statute draws no distinction between Americans and aliens held in federal custody,” the Court found “little reason to think that Congress intended the geographical coverage of the statute to vary depending on the detainee’s citizenship.” Constitutional questions about access to courts or substantive rights of aliens outside the sovereign territory of the United States were left for another day avoiding any ruling. Rasul was thereafter released by the government and that ended that review.
In 2004, at the same time as Rasul, the Supreme Court decided in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld that a U.S. citizen in military custody inside the U.S. had a constitutional right under the Due Process Clause to “receive notice of the factual basis for his classification, and a fair opportunity to rebut the Government’s factual assertions before a neutral decisionmaker.” Though this holding did not by its terms apply to the non-citizens at Guantanamo, it did suggest that the Court was skeptical of the military detention process and willing, at least in some circumstances, to use the Constitution to supervise it. These cases demonstrate that Congress has deliberately attempted to violate the Constitution with regard to jurisdiction whenever it can. This is further evidence that they attempt to act like a dictator and deny human rights themselves whenever possible to maintain power. This is reflected both in FATCA as well as the new sanctions against Russia punishing foreign entities outside of the territorial jurisdiction of the United States for not obeying Congress.
Clearly, Congress is openly committing treason against the United States by asserting power it does not have and it clearly knows what it is doing but count on the fact that there is no court which will stand up to their usurpation of power. Historically, what emerged internationally and the fall of monarchy at first was the extraterritorial consular jurisdiction that finally tended to die out among Christian nations in the 18th and 19th centuries. Consular Courts were US courts held in foreign jurisdictions. At first an American committing a crime on a ship in a Japanese port was tried there by Americans but without the constitutional protections. This was still a claim over jurisdiction over the person based upon territory for it would apply to a non-Americans regarding a crime on an American ship.
In 1881, Senator Carpenter, while attacking these Consular Courts on the floor in Congress, argued they were “a disgrace to this nation” because they deprived citizens of the “fundamental and essential” rights to indictment and trial by jury, declared: “If we are too mean as a nation to pay the expense of observing the Constitution in China, then let us give up our concessions in China and come back to as much of the Constitution as we can afford to carry out.” 11 Cong. Rec. 410. Of course John McCain and Lindsey Graham do not appreciate the constitutional restraints in the least. They supported the total denial of any human right to anyone the government dares to allege sent even $1 to an organization the government further alleged supported terrorism. You are to be thrown in prison, denial all rights, a lawyer, and a trial until you die.
International Law goes back to ancient times. It was seaborne transport that caused this same problem to surface. Whose law governed a ship? It was one of the earliest channels of commerce, and rules for resolving disputes involving maritime trade were developed in ancient recorded history. Early historical records of these laws include the Rhodian law (Nomos Rhodion Nautikos), which has not survived, but has been referenced in other legal texts such as Roman and Byzantine legal codes. Even the later the customs of the Hanseatic League refer to Rhodian law. In southern Italy the Ordinamenta et consuetudo maris (1063) at Trani and the Amalfian Laws were also early dated forms of international law that emerged from maritime or admiralty law after the Dark Ages. Congress has violated centuries of establishing human rights and international law.
The king abused the admiralty courts where there was no trial by jury. This was a prominent feature in the prelude to the American Revolution. Thomas Jefferson included the phrase in the Declaration of Independence “For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury” referring to the practice of Parliament giving the Admiralty Courts jurisdiction to enforce the Stamp Act in the American Colonies for taxes. Congress is trying to overturn the Constitution also today for taxes with respect to FATCA seizing assets of a foreign entity for an act it fails to do in its own country. Since the Stamp Act was unpopular, a colonial jury was unlikely to convict a colonist of its violation. However, because admiralty courts did not then grant trial by jury, a colonist accused of violating the Stamp Act (not paying taxes) could be more easily convicted by the Crown’s agents since there was no jury trial. Congress has done this to the Guantanamo Bay detainees and thus they remain in prison for life with no trial since 2001. And the US dares to claim China and Russia violate human right pretending to respect human rights itself.
Many American lawyers who were prominent in the American Revolution were in fact specialists in this unique area of international law and were known as admiralty and maritime lawyers in their private lives. Those included are Alexander Hamilton in New York and John Adams in Massachusetts. Today, very few lawyers even study the constitution for most only deal with statutory law presuming whatever law Congress enacts is constitutional. They are incapable of constitutional concepts for they study one semester and one class in constitutional law. Hence, we get Draconian laws with no concept that they are writing something really damaging to the nation as a whole. Moreover, the lawyers in Congress are typically those who failed in the legal profession to begin with. They were normally low-level lawyers.
In fact, in 1787 John Adams, who was then ambassador to France, wrote to James Madison proposing that the U.S. Constitution, then under consideration by the States, be amended to include “trial by jury in all matters of fact triable by the laws of the land [as opposed the law of admiralty] and not by the laws of Nations [i.e. not by the law of admiralty]”. The result was the Seventh Amendment to the U.S. Constitution which reads:
“In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.”
John Adams represented John Hancock in an admiralty case in colonial Boston involving seizure of one of Hancock’s ships for violations of Customs regulations. Even Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes was an admiralty lawyer. Since trade was by ship among nations, we can see that an admiralty lawyer was a lawyer trained in international law.
Territorial Jurisdiction is a very serious matter for if we bend that to collect taxes or punish Russia, nothing is left. The Supreme Court once said “jurisdiction is not a matter of sympathy or favor. The courts are bound to take notice of the limits of their own authority, and it is no part of the defendant’s duty to help in obtaining and unauthorized judgment by surprise.” Reid v US, 211 US 529, 539 (1909). Congress is undermining the entire fabric upon which the global economy is constructed. This is VERY SERIOUS!
In Johnson v Eisentrager, 339 US 763 (1950), the Supreme Court rejected the extraterritorial jurisdiction of the Constitution and would not apply it to enemy aliens arrested in China and imprisoned in Germany after WWII saying they had no right even to file habeas corpus in the United States. The Guantanamo Bay is US Territory, and thus they had the right to habeas corpus because the government brought them back to the United States, see Boumediene v. Bush, 553 U.S. 723 (2008). The Johnson Court said:
“Such extraterritorial application of organic law would have been so significant an innovation in the practice of governments that, it intended or apprehended, it could scarcely have failed to excite contemporary comment. Not one word can be cited. No decision of this court supports such a view. Cf. Downes v Bidwell, 182 US 244 (1901). None of the learned commentators on our constitution has even hinted at it. The practice of every modern government is opposed to it.”
Id/ 339 US at 784
This decision clearly states that FATCA and the Russian Sanctions are patently in violation of international law. Yet go try and find a federal judge to stand up and do the right thing – good luck. Even if you find one honest judge, the court of appeals will quickly overrule them. Welcome to the tyranny of imperialism.
When Government is infested self-interest for political vengeance against Russia to defend Hillary, it would help if they took the time to study the reasons we have Territorial Jurisdiction and why they are undermining centuries of law that is the foundation of civilization itself. Congress is destroying everything and commerce would be unworkable if every country did the same as the US Congress. If every American having any business in a foreign country failed to report what a German owns in Kansas could be seized overseas or arrest for traveling to Europe on vacation, it does not take a vivid imagination to realize that the entire global economy will come crashing down.
We will be preparing the Monetary Crisis Cycle report since it begins next year. Welcome to the insanity of politics. We simply MUST stop putting people who are ignorant of the past and the rule of law if we hope to create a better future for our posterity rather than a desolated land and a new Dark Age because we have stupidly destroying civilization.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Rule of Law
Posted Aug 3, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Is it true that the Federal Government is nothing more than a corporation? I have read that the “organic act of 1871” replaced our government with a corporation. I have to believe that with your knowledge of history you are aware of this. Does that mean all laws passed since that time are nothing more than corporate rules? Could elections that bypass the corporation actually be held? Granted that anyone running for office would be a marked person. Please share what are your thoughts? You are my hero Marty.
ANSWER: No, The federal government is not a corporation. It is not even the “sovereign” for that is declared in the Constitution that “we the people” are sovereign over and above that of government. As such, the government only has the authority to have those specific powers that have been delegated to it through the Constitution. As the Supreme Court stated in LEGAL TENDER CASES, 110 U.S. 421 (1884) (also refered to as Julliard v Greenman);
But be that as it may, there is no such thing as a power of inherent sovereignty in the government of the United States. It is a government of delegated powers, supreme within its prescribed sphere, but powerless outside of it. In this country, sovereignty resides in the people, and congress can exercise no power which they have not, by their constitution, entrusted to it; all else is withheld.
These people take one kernel of truth and the extrapolate that twisting them into giant conspiracy theories that mean nothing at the end of the day but gibberish. The District of Columbia Organic Act of 1871 was an Act of Congress that repealed the individual charters of the cities of Washington and Georgetown and established a new territorial government for the whole District of Columbia. Organic Act of 1871, revoked the individual charters of the cities of Washington and Georgetown and combined them with Washington County to create a unified territorial government for the entire District of Columbia. This had nothing to do with the federal government, only the municipality of Washington DC and the territory, since it was not a state.
Municipal governments are generally corporations. A municipal corporation is the legal term for a local governing body, including (but not necessarily limited to) cities, counties, towns, townships, charter townships, villages, and boroughs. Municipal incorporation occurs when such municipalities become self-governing entities under the laws of the state. They are NOT a sovereign government as is a state or the federal government.
Corporations date back to Roman law. Historically, such corporate charters allowed groups of people to act as one and that the operation would survive an individual person. Charters historically protected directors and stockholders from liability for debts and harms caused by their corporations. American legislators explicitly rejected this corporate shield. The penalty for abuse or misuse of the charter was not a plea bargain and a fine, but dissolution of the corporation.
In 1819 the U.S. Supreme Court tried to strip states of this sovereign right of creating charters (corporations) by overruling a lower court’s decision that allowed New Hampshire to revoke a charter granted to Dartmouth College by King George III. The Court claimed that since the charter contained no revocation clause, it could not be withdrawn even thought there had been a revolution and the King was replaced. The Supreme Court’s attack on state sovereignty became a major issue. Laws were then written and new state constitutional amendments were enacted all to circumvent the (Dartmouth College v Woodward) ruling. Over several decades thereafter beginning in 1844, nineteen states amended their constitutions to make corporate charters subject to alteration or revocation by their legislatures who created them. Finally, in 1855 the Supreme Court reversed itself in Dodge v. Woolsey where it then reaffirmed state’s powers over “artificial bodies” we call corporations.
These conspiracy theories are really made up by people who are clueless about the rule of law and throw together assumptions to reach outrageous predetermined conclusions
Armstrong Economics Blog/Corruption
Re-Posted Jul 30, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
The NSA is also in bed with major corporations and the idea of defending the economy has turned into defending corporations. In the “Quadrennial Intelligence Community Review Final Report” published by the US Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) in April 2009, the report recommended that the US intelligence services should put “a multi-pronged, systematic effort to gather open source and proprietary information through overt means, clandestine penetration (through physical and cyber means), and counterintelligence”. This was one of the hidden pieces from the Snowden files. It explains also why there is some cooperation between big corps and the NSA.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Russia
Re-Posted Jul 29, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
The Russian sanctions being pushed by Congress demonstrate the most unprofessional comprehension of how to manage an economy I have ever seen. These sanctions are effectively economic war and will find that Europe will be forced to side with Russia.
This is all because of the press like CNN to get ratings they are indeed laying the seeds of war driving the polls to 70% of Americans see Russia as an enemy when in fact the USA interferes in foreign elections all the time. CNN, New York Times, and the Washington Post will be responsible for creating World War III just as Pulitzer and Hearst were responsible for creating the Spanish-American war over fake news. The Fairness Doctrine needs to be restored ASAP and applied to newspapers as well as radio and TV.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Civil Unrest
Re-Posted Jul 26, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
The recent attacks in schools that have people calling for the banning of guns that are portrayed as always the worst in history, we clearly do not grasp that such events are not isolated and they are not limited to only guns. The Bath Consolidated School in Michigan remains as the biggest attack upon children after school board member Andrew Kehoe used dynamite to blow it up on May 18, 1927.
There are similar events carried out for various reasons such as Columbine High School, Virginia Tech and Sandy Hook Elementary, yet all tend to have a common theme of some mental health issue. History repeats because given the same set of circumstances. the likelihood of the same or similar outcome will result. In this case, Andrew Kehoe had his farm repossessed, could not meet his payments, and seems to have sought vengeance for losing everything.