View Full Version : Iceland is Voting Tomorrow to Reject the Icesave Bill. It´s Goal is to Enslave the Icelandic Population Third World Style with Huge Debt Followed by a

Saturday, April 9th, 2011, 12:30 AM
Iceland is voting tomorrow to reject the Icesave bill. It´s goal is to enslave the Icelandic population third world style with huge debt followed by austerity measures and prostitution of our natural resources.

On Saturday the Icelandic people vote in a referendum on whether the Icelandic state and thus the citizens should guarantee the so-called Icesave claim. Icesave was a bank deposit account that promised market-leading interest rates. When the bank failed, the question arose if the Icelandic depositors' guarantee fund – a private institution financed by the banks – should have taxpayer backing. Instead of letting depositors lose their money or even wait for compensation from the bankruptcy estate, the governments of the UK and Netherlands (where the Icesave products where marketed) decided to reimburse depositors from their own countries. The reimbursement included the full principal, while the recklessly high-interest profits of the risk-seeking depositors were thrown in as a bonus.

Then the British and Dutch authorities went to the Icelandic government and claimed, with reference to EU regulation, that the compensation was in fact the responsibility of the Icelandic taxpayer and that Iceland had to reimburse the British and the Dutch in full.

The claims on Iceland are huge, considering the size of its population – £3.5bn equals a claim on the British taxpayer of £700bn. The claim is contested; it has a doubtful legal basis, and an even more doubtful moral basis.

In a similar vein, the people of Ireland, Greece, Portugal and other EU nations have had to accept a total guarantee of all loans made by commercial lenders, thus leaving both financial institutions and bondholders free of all responsibility. Why is this? Has this been discussed properly? Is the idea that taxpayers should necessarily guarantee private lenders a commonly accepted proposition? Is reckless lending supposed to be without consequence?

Instead of applying the customary methods of writing off debt, it seems that an invisible consensus has been created – reminiscent of Chomsky's phrase of the "unconscious conspiracy" – that the financial excesses and reckless lending of the past decade shall be carried forward by the taxpayers into the unforeseeable future. As a result, citizens across Europe are facing extreme cuts in public services, tax rises and massive rises in unemployment.

Serious sovereign debt problems have, until now, been limited to developing countries, thwarting real social and economic development. But now the problems that people across some of the poorest countries in the south have been struggling with for decades are hitting home in the north.

It is in this context that the Icesave referendum is both meaningful and important for Europe and the wider world. It is evident that the democratic process is lacking. There has been no public debate to decide if taxpayers should bail out financial institutions as a matter of principle, or not. I seriously doubt that the European taxpayer thinks this is just and fair. It is not clear whether this is an ideological stance or a practical one. And if it is purely practical, is it sustainable?

The financial crisis has led to unimaginable suffering for millions of people who have lost their homes, jobs and pensions. These men and women know what these losses mean, while international financiers, bankers and bondholders walk away fully compensated, with their bonuses and surreal salaries and profits intact, as if nothing had happened. Their cynical and reckless behaviour is clearly visible, like bomb craters in the economic landscape.

The world is now looking to the Icelandic people, who have hitherto refused to accept the order of the day – unconditional bailouts of the financial sector. I hope that this commendable fighting spirit will carry the day.

Source http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/apr/08/iceland-referendum-conspiracy-financiers

Huginn ok Muninn
Saturday, April 9th, 2011, 01:10 AM
What sort of idiot would give the banksters the legal right to pick our pockets? Well, in direct democracy, no sensible person would vote for this, but the compromised senators of the USA did so, 75-25.

Saturday, April 9th, 2011, 04:14 PM
I hope the Icelanders make the right decision!

Monday, July 11th, 2011, 10:14 AM
Why doesnt Iceland form a Self-Sufficient Economy protect its borders, no immigration and use its own Intelligence to export to the world as opposed to taking debts from idiots?!

Monday, July 11th, 2011, 12:45 PM
How can Iceland form a self sufficient economy? They need the help of others to survive. The fish in the sea is dimmishing and the only other thing they have is cheap electricity for industry.

Monday, July 11th, 2011, 02:01 PM
Why doesnt Iceland form a Self-Sufficient Economy protect its borders, no immigration and use its own Intelligence to export to the world as opposed to taking debts from idiots?!

This is not an economic problem, it is the basic problem of a complete seperated-from-all-reality financial market that has so much power to be able to blackmail countries into bailing out their failed speculations.

The trillions in the US wasted on failing banks to bail-out their losses, the billions dumped in a black hole of the Greece dept-spirale incited by PRIVATE businesses called "rating agencies" to fill the pockets of PRIVATE banks (not to support the economy), the 78billion Euro that have been dumped in Portugal that went DIRECTLY into the private pockets of private banks, Spain is already in the line next and Italy lines in too right now, creating a "demand" by PRIVATE banks to stock up the ESM to at least 1,5billion - paid for by the tax payers???

Again, all this has NOTHING to do with the real economy that produces products and sells them. It's pushing around of numbers on papers to fill the pockets of greedy private banks with real money stolen from the people, and that know no moral or limit in their greed. Let them fail and go down and teach the investors a lesson that surreal high interest rates are a black hole that trashes their investments when the snowball system has run its course.

Sunday, July 24th, 2011, 09:16 AM
I've got it. The bill was passed. What a wasted opportunity!


Saturday, August 13th, 2011, 07:50 AM
Can’t pay back, won’t pay back
Iceland’s loud No

The people of Iceland have now twice voted not to repay international debts incurred by banks, and bankers, for which the whole island is being held responsible. With the present turmoil in European capitals, could this be the way forward for other economies?

by Silla Sigurgeirsdóttir and Robert H Wade

The small island of Iceland has lessons for the world. It held a referendum in April to decide, more or less, whether ordinary people should pay for the folly of the bankers (and by extension, could governments control the corporate sector if they depended on it for finance). Sixty per cent of the population rejected an agreement negotiated between Iceland, the Netherlands and the UK to pay back the British and Dutch governments for the money they spent to recompense savers with the failed bank Icesave. That was less resistance than the first referendum last spring, when 93% voted no.

The referendum was significant since European governments, pressured by speculators, the IMF and the European Commission, are imposing austerity policies on which their citizens have not voted. Even devotees of deregulation are worried by the degree of the western world’s servitude to unconstrained financial institutions. After the Icelandic referendum, even the liberal Financial Times noted with approval on 13 April that it had been possible to “put citizens before banks”, an idea which does not resonate among European political leaders.

Iceland is an unusually pure example of the dynamics that blocked regulation and caused financial fragility across the developed world for 20 years. In 2007, just before the financial crisis, Iceland’s average income was the fifth highest in the world, 60% above US levels; Reykjavik’s shops were stuffed with luxury goods, its restaurants made London seem cheap, and SUVs choked the narrow streets. Icelanders were the happiest people in the world according to an international study in 2006 (1 (http://mondediplo.com/2011/08/02iceland#nb1)). Much of this rested on the super-fast growth of three Icelandic banks that rose from small utility institutions in 1998 to being among world’s top 300 banks eight years later, increasing their assets from 100% of GDP in 2000 to almost 800% by 2007, a ratio second only to Switzerland.

The crisis came in September 2008 when money markets seized up after the Lehman meltdown. Within a week, Iceland’s three big banks collapsed and were taken into public ownership. Moody now listed them among the 11 biggest financial collapses in history.
Towards modernisation

After more than 600 years of foreign rule, Iceland’s social structure was the most feudal of all Nordic countries at the beginning of the 20th century. Fishing dominated the economy, generating most of the foreign-currency earnings and allowing the development of an import-based commercial sector. This created urban economic activities: construction, services, light industry. After the second world war the economy grew strongly, because of Marshall Plan aid (there was a large US-Nato military base); an abundant export commodity, cold-water fish, unusually blessed with high income elasticity of demand; and a small, literate population with a strong sense of national identity.

As Iceland became more prosperous it established a welfare state, in line with the tax-financed Scandinavian model, and by the 1980s had attained a level and a distribution of disposable income equal to the Nordic average. Yet it remained both more regulated and more patron-client-dominated than its European neighbours; a local oligopoly restricted the political and economic landscape.

There is a direct line of descent from the quasi-feudal power structures of the 19th century to the modernised Icelandic capitalism of the later 20th century, when a bloc of 14 families, popularly known as The Octopus, were the economic and political ruling elite. The Octopus controlled imports, transport, banking, insurance, fishing and supplies to the Nato base and provided most top politicians. The families lived like chieftains.
The Octopus controlled the rightwing Independence Party (IP) which dominated the media and decided on senior appointments in the civil service, police and judiciary. The local, state-owned banks were effectively run by the dominant parties, the IP and the Centre Party or CP (2 (http://mondediplo.com/2011/08/02iceland#nb2)). Ordinary people had to go through party functionaries to get loans to buy a car, or for foreign exchange for travel abroad. Power networks operated as webs of bullying, sycophancy and distrust, permeated with a macho culture, something like the former Soviet Union.

This traditional order was challenged from within by a neoliberal faction, the Locomotive group, which had coalesced in the early 1970s after law and business administration students at the University of Iceland took over a journal, The Locomotive, and promoted free-market ideas. Their aim was not just to transform the society but also to open career opportunities for themselves, rather than wait for Octopus patronage. At the end of the cold war their position strengthened materially and ideologically, as the communists and social democrats lost public support. The future IP prime minister, Davíð Oddsson, was a prominent member.

Oddsson, born in 1948 with a middle-class background, was elected as an IP councillor to the Reykjavik municipal council in 1974; by 1982 he was mayor of Reykjavik, leading privatisation campaigns, including selling off the municipality’s fishing industry, to the benefit of members of the Locomotive group. In 1991 he led the IP to victory in the general election, and reigned (not too strong a word) as prime minister for 14 years, overseeing the growth of the financial sector, before installing himself as governor of the Central Bank in 2004. He had little experience or interest in the world beyond Iceland. His Locomotive group protégé Geir Haarde, finance minister from 1998 to 2005, took over as prime minister shortly after. These two men most directly steered Iceland’s great experiment to create an international financial centre in the North Atlantic, midway between Europe and America.
Iceland liberalises

The liberalisation of the economy began in 1994, when accession to the European Economic Area, the free-trade bloc of EU countries, plus Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway, lifted restrictions on cross-border flows of capital, goods, services and people. The Oddsson government then sold off state-owned assets and deregulated labour. Privatisation began in 1998, implemented by Oddsson and Halldór Ásgrímsson, the leader of the CP. Of the banks, Landsbanki was allocated to IP grandees, Kaupthing to their counterparts in the CP, its coalition partner; foreign bidders were excluded. Later, Glitnir, a private bank formed from the merger of several smaller ones, joined the league.

So Iceland roared into international finance aided globally by abundant cheap credit and free capital mobility, and domestically by strong political backing for the banks. The new banks merged investment banking with commercial banking, so that both shared government guarantees. And the country had low sovereign debt, which gave the banks high marks from the international credit-rating agencies. The major shareholders of Landsbanki, Kaupthing, Glitnir and their spin-offs reversed the earlier political dominance of finance: government policy was now subordinated to the ends of finance.
Oddsson and friends relaxed the state-provided mortgage rules, allowing 90% loans. The newly privatised banks rushed to offer even more generous terms. Income tax and VAT rates were lowered to turn Iceland into a low-tax international financial centre. Bubble dynamics took hold. City planners aimed to move Reykjavik from the trajectory of an ordinary city to that of a world city (despite its small population of 110,000) and approved several grandiose new public and private buildings, saying “If Dubai, why not Reykjavik?”

Iceland’s new banking elite were intent on expanding their ownership of the economy, competing and cooperating with each other. Using their shares as collateral, some took out large loans from their own banks, and bought more shares in the same banks, inflating share prices. It worked like this: Bank A lent to shareholders in Bank B, who bought more shares in B using shares as collateral, raising B’s share price. Bank B returned the favour. The share prices of both banks rose, without new money coming in. The banks not only grew bigger, they grew more and more interconnected. Several dealings of this kind are now under criminal investigation by the special prosecutor, as cases of market manipulation.
Tiny Iceland soon managed to enter the big-bank league, with three banks in the world’s biggest 300 by 2006. The super-abundance of credit allowed people to consume in extravagant celebration of their escape from the earlier decades of credit rationing (on top of the earlier escape from foreign rule as recently as 1944). They saw themselves as fully independent at last, which may explain their happiness ranking. The owners and managers remunerated themselves on an ever-larger scale. The richer they were, the more they attracted political support. Their private jets, roaring in and out of Reykjavik’s airport, seemed to be visual and auditory proof to the part-admiring, part-envious population below. Income and wealth inequality surged, helped by government policies that shifted the tax burden to the poorer population (3 (http://mondediplo.com/2011/08/02iceland#nb3)). The bankers made large financial contributions to the governing parties and giant loans to key politicians. The leading Icelandic champion of free-market economics declared in The Wall Street Journal: “Oddsson’s experiment with liberal policies is the greatest success story in the world” (4 (http://mondediplo.com/2011/08/02iceland#nb4)).

In the euphoria, the dangers of a strategy of “economic growth based on vast foreign borrowing” were overlooked. Icelanders lived out the dictum of Plautus, the third century BC Roman playwright, who had one of his characters declare: “I am a rich man, as long as I do not repay my creditors.”
The 2006 mini-crisis

In 2006 there were worries in the financial press about the stability of the big banks, which were beginning to have problems raising funds in the money markets (on which their business model depended). Iceland’s current account deficit had soared from 5% of GDP in 2003 to 20% in 2006, one of the highest in the world. The stock market multiplied itself nine times over between 2001 and 2007.

Landsbanki, Kaupthing and Glitnir were operating far beyond the capacity of Iceland’s Central Bank to support them as lender of last resort; their liabilities were real, but many of their assets were dubious. In February 2006 Fitch downgraded Iceland’s outlook from stable to negative and triggered the 2006 “mini-crisis”: the krona fell sharply, the value of banks’ liabilities in foreign currencies rose, the stock market fell and business defaults rose, and the sustainability of foreign-currency debts became a public problem, The Danske Bank of Copenhagen described Iceland as a “geyser economy” on the point of exploding (5 (http://mondediplo.com/2011/08/02iceland#nb5)).

Icelandic bankers and politicians brushed aside the crisis. Iceland’s Central Bank took out a loan to double the foreign-exchange reserves, while the Chamber of Commerce, run by representatives of Landsbanki, Kaupthing, Glitnir and their spin-offs, responded with a PR campaign. It paid the American monetary economist Frederic Mishkin $135,000 to lend his name to a report attesting to the stability of Iceland’s banks. It allegedly paid the London Business School economist Richard Portes £58,000 ($95,000) to do the same for a later report. The supply-side economist Arthur Laffer assured the Icelandic business community in 2007 that fast economic growth with a large trade deficit and ballooning foreign debt were signs of success: “Iceland should be a model to the world” (6 (http://mondediplo.com/2011/08/02iceland#nb6)). The value of the banks’ “assets” was then around eight times greater than Iceland’s GDP.
In the elections of May 2007, the Social Democratic Alliance (SDA) entered a coalition government with the still-dominant IP. To the consternation of many supporters, SDA leaders ditched their pre-election pledges and endorsed the continued expansion of the financial sector.

Though they had survived 2006, Landsbanki, Kaupthing and Glitnir had trouble raising money to fund their asset purchases and repay existing debts, largely denominated in foreign currencies. So Landsbanki pioneered Icesave, an internet-based service that aimed to win retail savings deposits by offering more attractive interest rates than high-street banks. Established in Britain in October 2006, and in the Netherlands 18 months later, Icesave caught the attention of best buy internet finance sites and was soon flooded with deposits. Millions of pounds arrived from Cambridge University, the London Metropolitan Police Authority, even the UK Audit Commission, responsible for overseeing local government funds, as well as 300,000 Icesave depositors in the UK alone.

Icesave entities were legally established as branches, rather than subsidiaries, so they were under the supervision of the Icelandic authorities, rather than their hosts. No one noticed that the Icelandic regulatory agency had a total staff, including receptionist, of only 45 and suffered high turnover as many went on to join the banks, which offered better pay. No one worried much that, because of Iceland’s obligations as a member of the EEA deposit insurance scheme, its population of 320,000 would be responsible for compensating the depositors abroad in the event of failure. Landsbanki’s shareholders reaped the short-term profits while most Icelanders didn’t know anything about Icesave at all.
Love letters

The second “solution” to difficulties in raising new funds was a way to get more access to liquidity without pledging real assets as collateral. The Big Three sold debt securities to a smaller regional bank, which took these bonds to the Central Bank and borrowed against them, without having to supply further collateral; they then lent back to the initiating big bank. The bonds were called “love letters” — mere promises. By participating in this game and accepting as collateral claims on other Icelandic banks the central bank was conniving in the banks’ strategy of gambling for resurrection.

Then the banks internationalised the process: the Big Three established subsidiaries in Luxembourg and sold love letters to them. The subsidiaries sold them on to the Central Bank of Luxembourg or the European Central Bank and received cash in return, which they could pass back to the parent bank in Iceland or use themselves. The OECD calculates that just the domestic love letters, between the CBI and the Icelandic banks, incurred losses to the CBI and the Treasury of 13% of GDP (OECD Economic Surveys: Iceland, June 2011).
Financial collapse

The Icelandic banks fell two weeks after Lehman Brothers. On 29 September 2008, Glitnir approached Oddsson at the Central Bank for help with its looming liquidity problem. To restore confidence, Oddsson instructed the Central Bank to buy 75% of Glitnir’s shares. The effect was not to boost Glitnir but to undermine confidence in Iceland. The country’s rating plunged, and credit lines were withdrawn from Landsbanki and Kaupthing. A run on Icesave’s overseas branches began. Oddsson moved on 7 October 2008 to peg the krona to a basket of currencies at close to the pre-crisis value. With the currency tumbling and in the absence of capital controls, the foreign-exchange reserves were exhausted: the peg lasted for only a few hours, just long enough for those in the know to change their money out of the krona at a much more favourable rate. Inside sources indicate that billions left the currency in these hours. Then the krona was floated, and sank. On 8 October the then UK prime minister, Gordon Brown, froze Landsbanki’s UK assets under the anti-terrorism laws. The stock market, bank bonds, house prices and average income went into free-fall.

The IMF arrived in Reykjavik in October 2008 to prepare a crisis-management programme, the first time the Fund had been called in to rescue a developed economy since Britain in 1976. It offered a conditional loan of $2.1bn to stabilise the krona and backed the British and Dutch governments’ demands that Iceland should honour the obligations of the European deposit-guarantee scheme and recompense them for their bailouts of Icesave depositors.

Iceland’s normally placid population erupted in an angry protest movement, principally targeted at Haarde, Oddsson and the IP, although the SDA’s foreign minister Ingibjörg Gísladóttir was considered tarnished too. Thousands of people assembled in Reykjavik’s main square on freezing Saturday afternoons between October 2008 and January 2009, banged saucepans, linked arms in a circle around the parliament building to demand the government’s resignation, and pelted the building with food.
In January 2009, the IP-SDA coalition broke. To date, Iceland is the only country to have shifted distinctly to the left after the financial crisis. An interim SDA-LGM (Social Democrats-Left Green Movement) government was formed in January 2009 to lead until April’s election. In the election the IP was reduced to 16 seats, despite the overwhelming bias of the electoral system in its favour, its worst result since its formation in 1929.
Icesave debt rejected

The SDA-LGM government came under immediate pressure to repay the Icesave debt; much of the IMF loan was withheld until Reykjavik agreed. The new government was also divided on whether to apply for full membership of the EU and Eurozone, with most of the SDA strongly in favour. After long negotiations, the government presented the terms they had agreed on the Icesave debt to the parliament in October 2009: ? 5.5bn ($7.8bn), or 50% of Iceland’s GDP, was to be paid to the British and Dutch treasuries between 2016 and 2023.

The party’s health minister resigned in protest, five dissidents refused to vote with the government. The bill was forced through on 30 December 2009, against high feelings in the country. On 5 January 2010 President Grímsson announced that he would not sign it into law, out of respect for the national sentiment. In the ensuing referendum the bill was decisively rejected. In the May 2010 Reykjavik municipal elections, the SDA slumped to 19% and a comedian was elected as the city’s mayor. In October protests resumed, and the coalition conceded the election of a constitutional assembly to draw up a new constitution (the existing one having been inherited from Denmark on independence in 1944). When the election was invalidated by the Supreme Court, the assembly was reconvened as a constitutional council appointed by parliament.
The deal on the table in this April’s second Icesave referendum involved substantial concessions on the part of the British and Dutch governments. After the no vote, the disagreement may have to go to international courts.
The postponed crisis

The cost of losses on loans and guarantees, added to the cost of restructuring financial organisations, brings the total direct fiscal costs of the crisis to about 20% of GDP, higher than in any other country except Ireland (OECD Economic Surveys, Iceland, June 2011). But the postponement of major public spending cuts until this year has given the economy breathing space; and the sharp devaluation has helped to generate a trade surplus for the first time in many years. So far, Iceland has experienced smaller falls in GDP and employment than big public-spending slashers like Ireland, Estonia and Lithuania. The unemployment rate, only 2% in 2006, has been between 7% and 9% since 2009; but the rate of outmigration, of Icelanders and other European workers (predominantly Polish), has been the highest since 1889. However, the SDA-LGM government has announced drastic cuts in public spending for 2011 and beyond. Local governments have no budget for fresh projects. Hospitals and schools are cutting salaries and sacking employees. The freeze on house repossessions expired in 2010.
Finance in the driving seat

The IP-SDA government’s decision to provide unlimited bank deposit guarantees illustrates its debt to the financial elite. Had it limited the guarantee to 5m krona ($70,000), it would have protected the entire deposits of 95% of depositors; only the wealthiest 5%, including many politicians, benefited from the unlimited guarantee, which now means further constraints on public spending.

Iceland’s tiny scale seemed to make it easier to challenge the government’s denial of the impending crisis, but the opposite was true. The Oddsson government undertook an extreme privatisation of information. Iceland’s National Economic Institute had a reputation for independent thinking, and Oddsson abolished it in 2002. From then on the banks, international rating companies and the Chamber of Commerce provided almost the only information and running commentary on the state of the economy, present and future.
Paradoxically, a number of critical reports were published when the bubble was in the early stages, including one by the CBI. But by 2007-08, when the dangers were acute, reports, including those by the IMF, became noticeably softer in tone. It seems that the official financial institutions, as well as bankers and politicians, understood that the situation was so fragile that just to speak of it might trigger a run on the banks.

In October 2010 the parliament decided to charge Prime Minister Haarde for breach of ministerial responsibility. The permanent finance secretary Baldur Gudlaugsson (former member of the Locomotive group) has been given two years in prison for using inside information for his personal advantage while selling his shares in Landsbanki in September 2008. But the special prosecutor in charge of the investigation of the banks has been working with a team of 60 lawyers and others for the past two years and has so far brought no charges. Meanwhile Oddsson was appointed in September 2009 as editor-in-chief at Morgunblaðið, the leading Iceland daily, and orchestrated coverage of the crisis. A commentator said that was like appointing Nixon editor of The Washington Post after Watergate. Iceland’s elite looks after its own.


Saturday, August 13th, 2011, 08:09 AM
I'm completely baffled by politics and economics. The more I read about it the less I understand. I really just don't think anyone has any control over any of it.

Lew Skannon
Saturday, August 13th, 2011, 09:01 AM
What sort of idiot would give the banksters the legal right to pick our pockets? Well, in direct democracy, no sensible person would vote for this, but the compromised senators of the USA did so, 75-25.

Woodrow Wilson and every president, senator and congressman that followed, some more, some less.
In every country its the same. Politicians betray their people and play them as pawns on the big chessboard.

Then Adolf Hitler comes around, boots the banksters out of the country and gives industry, economy, culture, media and freedom back to his people. The banksters utilize all their power to demonize him and the german revolution, sparks a world war that destroys most of Europe and lays it bare for their exploitation either through predatorial capitalism or commisar run communism. Millions of people all across Europe, Asia, Africa and even USA saw this clearly and flocked to the german cause in the first all european peoples army in the history of man - The Waffen SS. But there was no hope. Through their media power, their secret societies, political traitors and a people unable or unwilling to question what they were served, the banksters won a total victory.

Since then the world has been plunged into a downward spiral of perpetual plunder, deconstruction of nations, decadence, social unrest, crime, poverty, insecurity, terror and endless wars that will end in either total destruction or total slavery in an inhumane one world state run by evil criminals.

Ultimately, through their failure to fulfil their duty as free citizens they all share in the responsibility for this developement. If we become slaves in the future it will be because the people have asked for it!

What you see or chose to see dictates your action. Your action has consequences that are both fair and just as they are the product of your own creation. In other words; one gets what one diserves.

Saturday, August 13th, 2011, 01:08 PM
I'm completely baffled by politics and economics. The more I read about it the less I understand. I really just don't think anyone has any control over any of it.

Indeed. Apart from the Bilderbergers, the safeguards of world economics and the banking system, no one knows all the details that are at work in the background. This is so by intention and design.

Already Rothschild said: it's good that no one understands how our system works. For if they would, we would all hang from the trees.

The thing with Iceland is a showcase example of the mechanisms at work in a small, overviewable area, relatively limited to Iceland itself, with clearly traceable offshots into other countries at a very late stage. The world of finance functions like that with much better hidden traces and roots and interconnections and manipulation (just look at Soros, one of the more visible manipulators today) for like 300 years though. It's a hell of a mess of information that is almost impossible to put together to a complete big picture. Which is, as said, the very intention.

Ultimately, through their failure to fulfil their duty as free citizens they all share in the responsibility for this developement. If we become slaves in the future it will be because the people have asked for it!

Well, for one, we are already slaves. And second, you can only fulfill your duty as "free" (whatever that may be) citizen if and when you are given all informations. This is clearly not the case, so whatever you decide is based on wrong/incomplete (and intentionally kept blurred) information - and the outcome is pre-designed through the selected info you have. For the common man on the street it's also not possible to get the full information. In essence, the clown show of "democratic voting" is only a pseudo-legitimization of dictatorship that forces upon the people whatever they think fills their pockets best.

Sure, one could accuse the hypnotised-by-media-entertainment public of being ignorant, blind, "unwilling" to see (and for some this might be true), but for most people the world just looks fine and free and perfectly in order, they have no reason to question what is presented to them as "reality".

It is really the duty of those who understand what's going on to tear down that sorry facade. The "people" out there dont have this chance.

Lew Skannon
Saturday, August 13th, 2011, 11:21 PM
It is really the duty of those who understand what's going on to tear down that sorry facade. The "people" out there dont have this chance.

Absolutely, and it is a heavy duty indeed. At the same time it has to be said that we are no supermen or exeptionally intelligent people. Somehow we found an opening and chose to go down the path of understanding. And through trial and error we managed to piece together the big picture and understand the causality of our predicament to some extent. There were no more tools available to us than to the rest of the population.

I disagree that we are slaves though.We might be prisoners, but as long as we refuse the enemy our spirit we are free men and women!

Sunday, August 21st, 2011, 12:00 AM
Iceland set to pay back British debt 'in months' following massive sale of retail stakes

Iceland is to speed up a massive sale of retail assets belonging to the Landsbanki bank in an attempt to pay off the lion’s share of the country’s outstanding debt to Britain within months.

Landsbanki has a financial interest in frozen food store chain Iceland, the famous London toy store Hamleys, jewellery group Aurum - which owns Goldsmiths and Mappin & Webb - and department store group House of Fraser.

The bank, which was effectively nationalised in 2008 during the financial crisis and is now run by a resolution committee, will begin the renewed effort in the coming weeks to attempt to raise at least part of the money ‘by Christmas’, sources said.


Rest of article here:

Sunday, August 21st, 2011, 12:18 AM
After what the UK did, they should make the payment in pennies. From 30,000 feet...

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011, 01:24 PM
Nevertheless Iceland is a remarkable nation: proud, selfconfident, which is totally unusual nowadays !

I wonder if it will become an active member in the forced EU community.

Lew Skannon
Monday, September 5th, 2011, 11:50 PM
All Hail to Iceland!

A story missing from our media: Iceland's on-going revolution

by Deena Stryker

An Italian radio program's story about Iceland’s on-going revolution is a stunning example of how little our media tells us about the rest of the world. We may remember that at the start of the 2008 financial crisis, Iceland literally went bankrupt. The reasons were mentioned only in passing, and since then, this little-known member of the European Union fell back into oblivion.

As one European country after another fails or risks failing, imperiling the Euro, with repercussions for the entire world, the last thing the powers that be want is for Iceland to become an example. Here's why:

Five years of a pure neo-liberal regime had made Iceland, (population 320 thousand, no army), one of the richest countries in the world. In 2003 all the country’s banks were privatised, and in an effort to attract foreign investors, they offered on-line banking whose minimal costs allowed them to offer relatively high rates of return. The accounts, called IceSave, attracted many UK and Dutch small investors. But as investments grew, so did the banks’ foreign debt. In 2003 Iceland’s debt was equal to 200 times its GNP, but in 2007, it was 900 percent. The 2008 world financial crisis was the coup de grace. The three main Icelandic banks, Landbanki, Kapthing and Glitnir, went belly up and were nationalised, while the Kroner lost 85% of its value with respect to the Euro. At the end of the year Iceland declared bankruptcy.

Contrary to what could be expected, the crisis resulted in Icelanders recovering their sovereign rights, through a process of direct participatory democracy that eventually led to a new Constitution. But only after much pain.

Geir Haarde, the Prime Minister of a Social Democratic coalition government, negotiated a two million one hundred thousand dollar loan, to which the Nordic countries added another two and a half million. But the foreign financial community pressured Iceland to impose drastic measures. The FMI and the European Union wanted to take over its debt, claiming this was the only way for the country to pay back Holland and Great Britain, who had promised to reimburse their citizens.

Protests and riots continued, eventually forcing the government to resign. Elections were brought forward to April 2009, resulting in a left-wing coalition which condemned the neoliberal economic system, but immediately gave in to its demands that Iceland pay off a total of three and a half million Euros. This required each Icelandic citizen to pay 100 Euros a month (or about $130) for fifteen years, at 5.5% interest, to pay off a debt incurred by private parties vis a vis other private parties. It was the straw that broke the reindeer’s back.

What happened next was extraordinary. The belief that citizens had to pay for the mistakes of a financial monopoly, that an entire nation must be taxed to pay off private debts was shattered, transforming the relationship between citizens and their political institutions and eventually driving Iceland’s leaders to the side of their constituents. The Head of State, Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, refused to ratify the law that would have made Iceland’s citizens responsible for its bankers’ debts, and accepted calls for a referendum.

Of course the international community only increased the pressure on Iceland. Great Britain and Holland threatened dire reprisals that would isolate the country. As Icelanders went to vote, foreign bankers threatened to block any aid from the IMF. The British government threatened to freeze Icelander savings and checking accounts. As Grimsson said: “We were told that if we refused the international community’s conditions, we would become the Cuba of the North. But if we had accepted, we would have become the Haiti of the North.” (How many times have I written that when Cubans see the dire state of their neighbor, Haiti, they count themselves lucky.)

In the March 2010 referendum, 93% voted against repayment of the debt. The IMF immediately froze its loan. But the revolution (though not televised in the United States), would not be intimidated. With the support of a furious citizenry, the government launched civil and penal investigations into those responsible for the financial crisis. Interpol put out an international arrest warrant for the ex-president of Kaupthing, Sigurdur Einarsson, as the other bankers implicated in the crash fled the country.

But Icelanders didn't stop there: they decided to draft a new constitution that would free the country from the exaggerated power of international finance and virtual money. (The one in use had been written when Iceland gained its independence from Denmark, in 1918, the only difference with the Danish constitution being that the word ‘president’ replaced the word ‘king’.)

To write the new constitution, the people of Iceland elected twenty-five citizens from among 522 adults not belonging to any political party but recommended by at least thirty citizens. This document was not the work of a handful of politicians, but was written on the internet. The constituent’s meetings are streamed on-line, and citizens can send their comments and suggestions, witnessing the document as it takes shape. The constitution that eventually emerges from this participatory democratic process will be submitted to parliament for approval after the next elections.

Some readers will remember that Iceland’s ninth century agrarian collapse was featured in Jared Diamond’s book by the same name. Today, that country is recovering from its financial collapse in ways just the opposite of those generally considered unavoidable, as confirmed yesterday by the new head of the IMF, Christine Lagarde to Fareed Zakaria. The people of Greece have been told that the privatization of their public sector is the only solution. And those of Italy, Spain and Portugal are facing the same threat.

They should look to Iceland. Refusing to bow to foreign interests, that small country stated loud and clear that the people are sovereign.

That’s why it is not in the news anymore.

LINK (http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-news/3057-a-story-missing-from-our-media-icelands-on-going-revolution.html)

Tuesday, September 6th, 2011, 12:37 AM
320 thousand!

My little town has 250 thousand!

I know this is off topic but what a fragile little environment to introduce other species of humans!

Lew Skannon
Tuesday, September 6th, 2011, 12:53 AM
320 thousand!

My little town has 250 thousand!

I know this is off topic but what a fragile little environment to introduce other species of humans!


Hehe.. I guess you havent read about the "fisheries war" between UK and Iceland back in the 70'es? :D

Friday, September 9th, 2011, 11:46 AM
That´s the difference between Libya and Iceland: both nations refuse to bow to foreign interests. Libya has already been brought over by force to join western democracy, international exploitation of its natural resources, globalization etc.

Iceland has not been forced yet ....

Sunday, November 13th, 2011, 10:53 PM
Well well! Looks like the world is trying to gain control over government and $$$$$! To me it seems like individuals are finally done with using other countries as scape goats and are pointing the finger right on target of who is to blame and who is to fix it!!!

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012, 10:28 PM
Seems the Icelanders go ahead:

Iceland claims independance from international (jewish) banks. That's the way to go:

By Bill Wilson – Iceland is free. And it will remain so, so long as her people wish to remain autonomous of the foreign domination of her would-be masters — in this case, international bankers.

On April 9, the fiercely independent people of island-nation defeated a referendum that would have bailed out the UK and the Netherlands who had covered the deposits of British and Dutch investors who had lost funds in Icesave bank in 2008.

At the time of the bank’s failure, Iceland refused to cover the losses. But the UK and Netherlands nonetheless have demanded that Iceland repay them for the “loan” as a condition for admission into the European Union.

In response, the Icelandic people have told Europe to go pound sand. The final vote was 103,207 to 69,462, or 58.9 percent to 39.7 percent. “Taxpayers should not be responsible for paying the debts of a private institution,” said Sigriur Andersen, a spokeswoman for the Advice group that opposed the bailout.

A similar referendum in 2009 on the issue, although with harsher terms, found 93.2 percent of the Icelandic electorate rejecting a proposal to guarantee the deposits of foreign investors who had funds in the Icelandic bank. The referendum was invoked when President Olafur Ragnur Grimmson vetoed legislation the Althingi, Iceland’s parliament, had passed to pay back the British and Dutch.

Under the terms of the agreement, Iceland would have had to pay £2.35 billion to the UK, and €1.32 billion to the Netherlands by 2046 at a 3 percent interest rate. Its rejection for the second time by Iceland is a testament to its people, who feel they should bear no responsibility for the losses of foreigners endured in the financial crisis.

That opposition to bailouts led to Iceland’s decision to allow the bank to fail in 2008. Not that the taxpayers there could have afforded to. As noted by Bloomberg News, at the time the crisis hit in 2008, “the banks had debts equal to 10 times Iceland’s $12 billion GDP.”

“These were private banks and we didn’t pump money into them in order to keep them going; the state did not shoulder the responsibility of the failed private banks,” Iceland President Olafur Grimsson told Bloomberg Television.

The voters’ rejection came despite threats to isolate Iceland from funding in international financial institutions. Iceland’s national debt has already been downgraded by credit rating agencies, and now those same agencies have promised to do so once again as punishment for defying the will of international bankers.

This is just the latest in the long drama since 2008 of global institutions refusing to take losses in the financial crisis. Threats of a global economic depression and claims of being “too big to fail” have equated to a loaded gun to the heads of representative governments in the U.S. and Europe. Iceland is of particular interest because it did not bail out its banks like Ireland did, or foreign ones like the U.S. did.

If that fervor catches on amongst taxpayers worldwide, as it has in Iceland and with the tea party movement in America, the banks would have something to fear; that is, the inability to draw from limitless amounts of funding from gullible government officials and central banks. It appears that the root cause is government guarantees, whether explicit or implicit, on risk-taking by the banks.

Ultimately, such guarantees are not necessary to maintain full employment or even prop up an economy with growth, they are simply designed to allow these international institutions to overleverage and increase their profit margins in good times — and to avoid catastrophic losses in bad times.

The lesson here is instructive across the pond, but it is a chilling one. If the U.S. — or any sovereign for that matter — attempts to restructure their debts, or to force private investors to take a haircut on their own foolish gambles, these international institutions have promised the equivalent of economic war in response. However, the alternative is for representative governments to sacrifice their independence to a cadre of faceless bankers who share no allegiance to any nation.

It is the conflict that has already defined the beginning of the 21st Century. The question is whether free peoples will choose to remain free, as Iceland has, or to submit.

Read more at NetRightDaily.com: http://netrightdaily.com/2011/04/iceland-declares-independence-from-international-banks/#ixzz1kPwNsH2q

source (http://netrightdaily.com/2011/04/iceland-declares-independence-from-international-banks/#ixzz1kIn6fmVA)