Financial War: Russia & China vs U.S. & NATO

The financial war between Russia with China’s tacit backing on one side, and America and her NATO allies on the other has escalated rapidly. It appears that President Putin was thinking several steps ahead when he launched Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

We have seen sanctions fail. We have seen Russia achieve record export surpluses. We have seen the rouble become the strongest currency on the foreign exchanges.

We are seeing the west enter a new round of European monetary inflation to pay everyone’s energy bills. The euro, yen, and sterling are already collapsing — the dollar will be next. From Putin’s point of view, so far, so good.

Russia has progressed her power over Asian nations, including populous India and Iran. She has persuaded Middle Eastern oil and gas producers that their future lies with Asian markets, and not Europe. She is subsidising Asia’s industrial revolution with discounted energy. Thanks to the west’s sanctions, Russia is on its way to confirming Halford Mackinder’s predictions made over a century ago, that Russia is the true geopolitical centre of the world.

There is one piece in Putin’s jigsaw yet to be put in place: a new currency system to protect Russia and her allies from an approaching western monetary crisis. This article argues that under cover of the west’s geopolitical ineptitude, Putin is now assembling a new gold-backed multi-currency system by combining plans for a new Asian trade currency with his new Moscow World Standard for gold.

Currency developments under the radar

Unreported by western media, there are some interesting developments taking place in Asia over the future of currencies. Earlier this summer, it emerged that Sergei Glazyev, a senior Russian economist and Minister in charge of the Eurasian Economic Commission (EAEU), was leading a committee planning a new trade currency for the Eurasian Economic Union.

As put forward in Russian and EAEU media, the new currency is to be comprised of a mixture of national currencies and commodities. A weighting of some sort was suggested to reflect the relative importance of the currencies and commodities traded between them. At the same time, the new trade settlement currency was to be available to any other nation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and the expanding BRICS membership. The ambition is for it to become an Asia-wide replacement for the dollar.

More specifically, the purpose is to do away with the dollar for trade settlements on cross-border transactions between participants. It is worth noting that any dollar transaction is reflected in US banks through the correspondent banking system, potentially giving the US authorities undesirable economic intelligence, and information on sanction-busting and other activities deemed illegal or undesirable by the US authorities. Furthermore, any transaction involving US dollars becomes a matter for the US legal system, giving US politicians the authority to intervene wherever the dollar is used.

As well as removing these disadvantages, through the inclusion of a basket of commodities there appears to be an acceptance that the new trade currency must be more stable in terms of its commodity purchasing power than exists with that of the dollar. But we can immediately detect flaws in the outline proposal. The mooted inclusion of national currencies in the basket is not only an unnecessary complication, but any nation joining it would presumably trigger a wholesale rebalancing of the currency’s composition.

Including national currencies is a preposterous suggestion, as is any suggestion that the commodity element should be weighted by trade volumes transacted between participating states. Instead, an unweighted average of energy, precious metals, and base metals makes more sense, but even that does not go far enough. The reasons are illustrated by the two charts in Figure 1.

The upper chart shows baskets of different categories of commodities indexed and priced in dollars. Between them, they represent a wide range of commodities and raw materials. These baskets are considerably less volatile than their individual components. For example, since April 2020 oil has risen from a distorted minus figure to a high of $130, whereas the energy basket has risen only 6.3 times, because other components have not risen nearly as much as crude oil and some components might be rising while others might be falling. Agriculture raw materials are comprised of cotton, timber, wool, rubber, and hides, not raw materials liable to undesirable seasonality. But the average of the four categories is considerably more stable than its components (the black line).

We are moving towards price stability. However, all commodities are priced in US dollars, which being undesirable, cannot be avoided. Pricing in gold, which is legal money, eventually resolves this problem because it can be fixed against participating currencies. The result of pricing the commodity categories in gold and the average of them is shown in the lower chart.

Since 1992, the average (the black line) has varied between 0.37 and 1.66, and is currently at 0.82, or 18% less than in January 1992. This is as stable as it gets, and even this low volatility would probably be less if the dollar wasn’t itself so volatile and the gold price manipulated by nay-saying western authorities. To further illustrate these points, Figure 2 shows the dollar’s volatility in terms of crude oil.

Before the abandonment of Bretton Woods in 1971, the price of oil hardly changed. Since then, measured by gold the dollar has lost 98% of its purchasing power. Furthermore, the chart shows that it is the dollar which is extremely volatile and not oil, because the price of oil in gold is relatively constant (down only 20% from 1950), while in dollars it is up 33.6 times with some wild price swings along the way. Critics of measuring prices in gold ignore the fact that legal money is gold and not paper currencies or bank credit: attempts by governments and their epigones to persuade us otherwise are propaganda only.

Therefore, Glazyev should drop currencies from the proposed basket entirely and strive to either price a basket of non-seasonal commodities in gold, or alternatively simply reference the new currency to gold in a daily fix. And as the charts above confirm, there is little point in using a basket of commodities priced in dollars or gold when it is far simpler for the EAEU nations and for anyone else wishing to participate in the new trade currency to use a trade currency directly tied to the gold price. It would amount to a new Asian version of a Bretton Woods arrangement and would need no further adjustment.

Attributing them to excessive credit, from recent statements by President Putin it is clear he has a better understanding of currencies and the west’s inflationary problems than western economists. Intellectually, he has long demonstrated an appreciation of the relationship between money, that is only gold, and currency and credit. His knowledge was further demonstrated by his insistence that the “unfriendlies” pay for energy in roubles, taking control of the media of energy exchange into Russia’s own hands and away from those of his enemies.

In short, Putin appears to understand that gold is money and that the rest is unreliable, weaponizable, credit. So, why does he not just command a new trade currency to be created, backed by gold?

Enter the new Moscow gold standard

Logic suggests that a gold-backed currency will be the outcome of Glazyev’s EAEU committee’s trade currency deliberations after all, because of a subsequent announcement from Moscow concerning a new Russian bullion market.

In accordance with western sanctions, the London Bullion Market refused to accept Russian mined and processed gold. It was then natural for Russia to propose a new gold market based in Moscow with its own standards. It is equally sensible for Moscow to set up a price fixing committee, replicating that of the LBMA. But instead of it being the basis for a far larger unallocated gold deposit account offering by Russian and other banks, it will be a predominantly physical market.

Based in Moscow, with a new market called the Moscow International Precious Metals Exchange, the Moscow Gold Standard will incorporate some of the LBMA’s features, such as good delivery lists with daily, or twice daily fixings. The new exchange is therefore being promoted as a logical replacement for the LBMA.

But could that be a cover, with the real objective being to provide a gold link to the new trade currency planned by Glazyev’s EAEU committee? Timing suggests that this may indeed be the case, but we will only know for sure as events unfold.

If it is to be backed by gold, the considerations behind setting up a new trade currency are fairly straightforward. There is the Chinese one kilo bar four-nines standard, which is widely owned, has already been adopted throughout Asia, and is traded even on Comex. Given that China is Russia’s long-term partner, that is likely to be the standard unit. The adoption of the Chinese standard in the new Moscow exchange is logical, simplifying the relationship with the Shanghai Gold Exchange, and streamlining fungibility between contracts, arbitrage, and delivery.

Geopolitics suggest that the simple proposition behind the establishment of a new Moscow exchange will fit in with a larger trans-Asia plan and is unlikely to move at the glacial pace of developments between Russia and China to which we have become accustomed. The gold question has become bound up in more rapid developments triggered by Russia’s belligerence over Ukraine, and the sanctions which quickly followed.

There can be little doubt that this must be leading to a seismic shift in gold policy for the Russian Chinese partnership. The Chinese in particular have demonstrated an unhurried patience that befits a nation with a sense of its long history and destiny. Putin is more of a one-man act. Approaching seventy years old, he cannot afford to be so patient and is showing a determination to secure a legacy in his lifetime as a great Russian leader. While China has made the initial running with respect to gold policy, Putin is now pushing the agenda more forcefully.

Before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the strategy was to let the west make all the geopolitical and financial mistakes. For Putin perhaps, the lesson of history was informed by Napoleon’s march to the gates of Moscow, his pyrrhic victory at Borodino, and his defeat by the Russian winter. Hitler made the same mistake with Operation Barbarossa. From Putin’s viewpoint, the lesson was clear — Russia’s enemies defeat themselves. It was repeated in Afghanistan, where the American-led NATO enemy was conquered by its own hubris without Putin having to lift so much as a finger. That is why Russia is Mackinder’s Pivot Area of the World Island. It cannot be attacked by navies, and supply line requirements for armies make Russia’s defeat well-nigh impossible

Following the Ukraine invasion, Putin’s financial strategy has become more aggressive, and is potentially at odds with China’s economic policy. Being cut off from western markets, Putin is now proactive, while China which exports goods to them probably remains more cautious. But China knows that western capitalism bears the seeds of its own destruction, which would mean the end of the dollar and the other major fiat currencies. An economic policy based on exports to capitalistic nations would be a passing phase.

China’s gold policy was aways an insurance policy against a dollar collapse, realising that she must not be blamed for the west’s financial destruction by announcing a gold standard for the yen in advance of it. It would be a nuclear equivalent in a financial war, only an action to be taken as a last resort.

Developments in Russia have changed that. It is clear to the Russians, and most likely the Chinese, that credit inflation is now pushing the dollar into a currency crisis in the next year or two. Preparations to protect the rouble and the yuan from the final collapse of the dollar, long taught in Marxist universities as inevitable, must assume a new urgency. It would be logical to start with a new trade settlement currency as a testbed for national currencies in Asia, and for it to be set up in such a way that it would permit member states to adopt gold standards for their own currencies as well.

Possession of bullion is key

The move away from western fiat currencies to gold backed Asian currencies requires significant gold bullion ownership at the least. The only members, associates, and dialog partners of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and the EAEU whose central banks have not increased their gold reserves since the Lehman failure when the credit expansion of dollars began in earnest, are minor states. Since then, between them they have added 4,645 tonnes to their reserves, while all the other central banks account for only 781 tonnes of additional gold reserves.

But central bank reserves are only part of the story, with nations running other, often secret national bullion accounts not included in reserves. The appendix to this article shows why and how China almost certainly accumulated an undeclared quantity of bullion, likely to be in the region of 25,000 tonnes by 2002 and probably more since.

Since 2002, when the Shanghai Gold Exchange opened and China’s citizens were permitted for the first time to own gold, gold delivered into public hands has totalled a further amount of over 20,000 tonnes. While the bulk of this is jewellery and some has been returned to the SGE as scrap for re-refining, it is clear that the authorities have encouraged Chinese citizens to retain gold for themselves, which traditionally has been real money in China.

According to Simon Hunt of Simon Hunt Strategic Services, as well as declared reserves of 2,301 tonnes Russia also holds gold bullion in its Gosfund (the State Fund of Russia) bringing its holdings up to 12,000 tonnes. This is significantly greater than the 8,133 tonnes declared by the US Treasury, over which there are widespread doubts concerning the veracity of its true quantity.

Obviously, the Asian partnership has a very different view of gold from the American hegemon. Furthermore, in recent months evidence has confirmed what gold bugs have claimed all along, that the Bank for International Settlements and major bullion operators such as JPMorgan Chase have indulged in a price suppression scheme to discourage gold ownership and to divert bullion demand into synthetic unallocated accounts.

The secrecy that surrounds reporting of gold reserves to the IMF raises further suspicions over the true position. Furthermore, there are leases and swaps between central banks, the BIS, and bullion dealers that lead to double counting and bullion recorded as being in possession of governments and their central banks but being held by other parties.

As long ago as 2002 when the gold price was about $300 per ounce, Frank Veneroso, who as a noted analyst spent considerable time and effort identifying central bank swaps and leases, concluded that anything between 10,000 and 15,000 tonnes of government and central bank gold reserves were out on lease or swapped — that is up to almost half the total official global gold reserves at that time. His entire speech is available on the Gold Antitrust Action Committee website, but this is the introduction to his reasoning:[i]

“Let’s begin with an explanation of gold banking and gold derivatives.

“It is a simple, simple idea. Central banks have bars of gold in a vault. It’s their own vault, it’s the Bank of England’s vault, it’s the New York Fed’s vault. It costs them money for insurance – it costs them money for storage— and gold doesn’t pay any interest. They earn interest on their bills of sovereigns, like US Treasury Bills. They would like to have a return as well on their barren gold, so they take the bars out of the vault and they lend them to a bullion bank. Now the bullion bank owes the central bank gold—physical gold—and pays interest on this loan of perhaps 1%. What do these bullion bankers do with this gold? Does it sit in their vault and cost them storage and insurance? No, they are not going to pay 1% for a gold loan from a central bank and then have a negative spread of 2% because of additional insurance and storage costs on their physical gold. They are intermediaries—they are in the business of making money on financial intermediation. So they take the physical gold and they sell it spot and get cash for it. They put that cash on deposit or purchase a Treasury Bill. Now they have a financial asset—not a real asset—on the asset side of their balance sheet that pays them interest—6% against that 1% interest cost on the gold loan to the central bank. What happened to that physical gold? Well, that physical gold was Central Bank bars, and it went to a refinery and that refinery refined it, upgraded it, and poured it into different kinds of bars like kilo bars that go to jewellery factories who then make jewellery out of it. That jewellery gets sold to individuals. That’s where those physical bars have wound up—adorning the women of the world…

“We have gotten, albeit crude, estimates of gold borrowings from the official sector from probably more than 1/3 of all the bullion banks. We went to bullion dealers, and we asked, “Are these guys major bullion bankers, medium bullion bankers, or small-scale bullion bankers?” We classified them accordingly and from that we have extrapolated a total amount of gold lending from our sample. That exercise has pointed to exactly the same conclusion as all of our other evidence and inference—i.e., something like 10,000 to 15,000 tonnes of borrowed gold.”

Veneroso’s findings were stunning. But two decades later, we have no idea of the current position. The market has changed substantially since 2002, and today it is thought that swaps and leases are often by book entry, rather than physical delivery of bullion into markets. But the implications are clear: if Russia or China cared to declare their true position and made a move towards backing their currencies with gold or linking them to gold credibly, it would be catastrophic for the dollar and western fiat currencies generally. It would amount to a massive bear squeeze on the west’s longstanding gold versus fiat policy. And remember, gold is money, and the rest is credit, as John Pierpont Morgan said in 1912 in evidence to Congress. He was not stating his opinion, but a legal fact.

In a financial crisis, the accumulated manipulation of bullion markets since the 1970s is at significant risk of becoming unwound. The imbalance in bullion holdings between the Russian Chinese camp and the west would generate the equivalent of a financial nuclear event. This is why it is so important to understand that instead of being a longstop insurance policy against the Marxist prediction of capitalism’s ultimate failure, it appears that the combination of planning for a new trade currency for Asian nations centred on members of the EAEU, coinciding with the introduction of a new Moscow-based bullion standard, is now pre-empting financial developments in the west. That being the case, a financial nuclear bomb is close to being triggered.


China’s gold policy

China actually took its first deliberate step towards eventual domination of the gold market as long ago as June 1983, when regulations on the control of gold and silver were passed by the State Council. The following Articles extracted from the English translation set out the objectives very clearly:

Article 1. These Regulations are formulated to strengthen control over gold and silver, to guarantee the State’s gold and silver requirements for its economic development and to outlaw gold and silver smuggling and speculation and profiteering activities.

Article 3. The State shall pursue a policy of unified control, monopoly purchase and distribution of gold and silver. The total income and expenditure of gold and silver of State organs, the armed forces, organizations, schools, State enterprises, institutions, and collective urban and rural economic organizations (hereinafter referred to as domestic units) shall be incorporated into the State plan for the receipt and expenditure of gold and silver.

Article 4. The People’s Bank of China shall be the State organ responsible for the control of gold and silver in the People’s Republic of China.

Article 5. All gold and silver held by domestic units, with the exception of raw materials, equipment, household utensils and mementos which the People’s Bank of China has permitted to be kept, must be sold to the People’s Bank of China. No gold and silver may be personally disposed of or kept without authorization.

Article 6. All gold and silver legally gained by individuals shall come under the protection of the State.

Article 8. All gold and silver purchases shall be transacted through the People’s Bank of China. No unit or individual shall purchase gold and silver unless authorised or entrusted to do so by the People’s Bank of China.

Article 12. All gold and silver sold by individuals must be sold to the People’s Bank of China.

Article 25. No restriction shall be imposed on the amount of gold and silver brought into the People’s Republic of China, but declaration and registration must be made to the Customs authorities of the People’s Republic of China upon entry.

Article 26. Inspection and clearance by the People’s Republic of China Customs of gold and silver taken or retaken abroad shall be made in accordance with the amount shown on the certificate issued by the People’s Bank of China or the original declaration and registration form made on entry. All gold and silver without a covering certificate or in excess of the amount declared and registered upon entry shall not be allowed to be taken out of the country.

These articles make it clear that only the People’s Bank was authorised to acquire or sell gold on behalf of the state, without limitation, and that citizens owning or buying gold were not permitted to do so and must sell any gold in their possession to the People’s Bank.

Additionally, China has deliberately developed her gold mine production regardless of cost, becoming the largest producer by far in the world.[ii] State-owned refineries process this gold along with doré imported from elsewhere. Virtually none of this gold leaves China, so that the gold owned today between the state and individuals continues to accumulate.

The regulations quoted above formalised the State’s monopoly over all gold and silver which is exercised through the Peoples Bank, and they allow the free importation of gold and silver but keep exports under very tight control. The intent behind the regulations is not to establish or permit the free trade of gold and silver, but to control these commodities in the interest of the state.

This being the case, the growth of Chinese gold imports recorded as deliveries to the public since 2002, when the Shanghai Gold Exchange was established and the public then permitted to buy gold, is only the more recent evidence of a deliberate act of policy embarked upon thirty-nine years ago. China had been accumulating gold for nineteen years before she allowed her own nationals to buy when private ownership was finally permitted. Furthermore, the bullion was freely available, because in seventeen of those years, gold was in a severe bear market fuelled by a combination of supply from central bank disposals, leasing, and increasing mine production, all of which I estimate totalled about 59,000 tonnes. The two largest buyers for all this gold for much of the time were private buyers in the Middle East and China’s government, with additional demand identified from India and Turkey. The breakdown from these sources and the likely demand are identified in the table below:

In another context, the cost of China’s 25,000 tonnes of gold equates to roughly 10% of her exports over the period, and the eighties and early nineties in particular also saw huge capital inflows when multinational corporations were building factories in China. However, the figure for China’s gold accumulation is at best informed speculation. But given the determination of the state to acquire gold expressed in the 1983 regulations and by its subsequent actions, it is clear China had deliberately accumulated a significant undeclared stockpile by 2002.

So far, China’s long-term plans for the acquisition of gold appear to have achieved some important objectives. To date, additional deliveries to the public through the SGE now total over 20,000 tonnes.

China’s motives

China’s motives for taking control of the gold bullion market have almost certainly evolved. The regulations of 1983 make sense as part of a forward-looking plan to ensure that some of the benefits of industrialisation would be accumulated as a risk-free national asset. This reasoning is similar to that of the Arab nations capitalising on the oil-price bonanza only ten years earlier, which led them to accumulate their hoard, mainly held in private as opposed to government hands, for the benefit of future generations. However, as time passed the world has changed substantially both economically and politically.

2002 was a significant year for China, when geopolitical considerations entered the picture. Not only did the People’s Bank establish the Shanghai Gold Exchange to facilitate deliveries to private investors, but this was the year the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation formally adopted its charter. This merger of security and economic interests with Russia has bound Russia and China together with a number of resource-rich Asian states into an economic bloc. When India, Iran, Mongolia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan join (as they now have or are already committed to do), the SCO will cover more than half the world’s population. And inevitably the SCO’s members are looking for an alternative trade settlement system to using the US dollar.

At some stage China with her SCO partner, Russia, might force the price of gold higher as part of their currency strategy. You can argue this from an economic point of view on the basis that possession of properly priced gold will give her a financial dominance over global trade at a time when we are trashing our fiat currencies, or more simply that there’s no point in owning an asset and suppressing its value for ever. From 2002 there evolved a geopolitical argument: both China and Russia having initially wanted to embrace American and Western European capitalism no longer sought to do so, seeing us as soft enemies instead. The Chinese public were then encouraged, even by public service advertising, to buy gold, helping to denude the west of her remaining bullion stocks and to provide market liquidity in China.

What is truly amazing is that the western economic and political establishment have dismissed the importance of gold and ignored all the warning signals. They do not seem to realise the power they have given China and Russia to create financial chaos as a consequence of gold price suppression. If they do so, which seems to be only a matter of time, then London’s fractional reserve system of unallocated gold accounts would simply collapse, leaving Shanghai as the only major physical market.

This is probably the final link in China’s long-standing gold strategy, and through it a planned domination of the global economy in partnership with Russia and the other SCO nations. But as noted above, recent events have brought this outcome forward.

[i] See https://www.gata.org/node/4249

[ii] Following covid, China’s production has declined from over 400 tonnes annually to closer to 300 tonnes.

Source: GSI Exchange

Why COP26 Refused to Address Planned Obsolescence • Strategic Culture

Source: https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2021/11/08/why-cop26-refused-to-address-planned-obsolescence/

Joaquin Flores

November 8, 2021


The ugly truth about cap and trade and all similar schemes is that they do not really reduce carbon emissions, if most other factors remain the same, Joaquin Flores writes.

The failure of the UN’s COP26 conference in Glasgow was spectacle of hypocrisy befitting of a moribund ruling class. These kinds of antics harken back to the decline and fall of the Roman Empire, where its decadent ruling class was deadly out of touch with the causes of growing decentralization and dissatisfaction in the periphery. And so taking our historical analogy further, we may begin to unwrap an epochal catastrophe which today’s elite now faces.

The transition from the Roman imperial system, through the Carolingian period, into to the system of medieval Europe, saw a continual decentralization of power, and the evolution of slaves and serfs into land-owning peasants.

Boris Johnson arrives at COP26 by private jumbo jet ready to tackle other leaders on emissions

This economic decentralization was connected to localized power structures. Roman forts thereby formed the basis of the medieval system of castles, and the relative weakness of these lords and little kings correlated to an improvement in the rights and economic power of what became the small land-owning peasantry.

Therefore a method of re-introducing an element of centralization to these structures, to the Vatican in Rome, was the development of the Church and the refinement of its system of tithing from individual offering to an imposed and required tax, enforced by law and collectively. Significant theological and metaphysical questions and dissimilarities aside, here’s what’s critical:

The carbon tax system is a mystical system that cannot be justified by material sciences or concerns, and instead sits as a type of ‘new religion’ that the historical centres of capital have rolled out to justify a type of tithing upon increasingly sovereign and decentralized corners of the world.

Payment of tithing, like the carbon tax system, is an ideological project to maintain powers of a moribund economic system, after the decline of the physical structures of imperialism that held together the old empire.

The various carbon tax systems, (cap and trade CAP/ETS, etc.) are little more than a rehashing of a tithing system.

Like with the Church’s control over the scribes and monasteries, the new carbon cult relies upon its monopoly over the inherited centers of knowledge creation and distribution, to create a parallel reality which requires a payment into something which cannot be rationalized in either scientific or economic terms.

Likewise, one could argue that the influence of abstracted aims of the Church lent towards the management of high unemployment and inflation caused by this tithing tax, through the calling of crusades and counter-rational measures for dealing with plagues, which tended to account for the premature deaths of countless ‘worthless eaters’.

This very much parallels the gross neo-Malthusian solutions proffered by the elites in our day and age.

The amazing part of this? The entire catastrophe today can be avoided if planned obsolescence was eliminated as an economic practice.

It doesn’t matter where one stands on climate science – even a true believer would be forced to see the logic in eradicating planned obsolescence if the aim was carbon neutrality.

Carbon Reduction as Cover for a Sinister Depopulation Agenda

The fundamental issue driving the COP26 population reduction scheme which parades as ‘carbon reduction’, therefore, is the hard problem of overcoming planned obsolescence. This single issue, almost more than any other, is definitive proof that there is no real concern for the environment, and that the ruling class is purely focused on population reduction and the suppression of actual 3D printing and eradicating a real Fourth Industrial Revolution.

That last point may come as a surprise to many, who are following the talking points of Klaus Schwab and company, at the World Economic Forum, who have incorporated these terms into their neo-Malthusian agenda.

They use these words so that we cannot understand them, so we will not look right where they are hiding their real meanings and implications – in their mouths.

So in place, they use the words and phrases – 4IR, 3D printing, IoT – but in actuality they are trying to subvert these while other technologies, entirely coercive and centralizing in nature, are rolled out onto the suffering faces of the masses.

As we have shown in our work on planned obsolescence, nowhere is the subject of planned obsolescence directly confronted – either in Schwab’s “Covid-19: The Great Reset” (in fact the opposite is proposed), nor is it confronted in the SDG Agenda. There is an oblique reference to repairable products and longer product lifespans only on page 62 of the 250 page manifesto. This adds justification to our charge that among the points of the ‘Great Reset’ is a serious reduction in human population.

Global Fight-back – The UN and Beyond

The same technologies to create the three industrial revolutions in the imperial core, were later used by developing countries, to grow and improve their physical economy. But these efforts were conducted in fierce opposition to the centrally directed model of modernity; a centralism coming from the financiers of the City of London and conducted through the geopolitics of the so-called Washington Consensus.

While accurately understanding some of the mutually shared concerns among and between nations, the Agenda 2030 solutions offered stem from the same kind of thinking, and from the very same actors, which produced the problem itself. Why would anyone trust these solutions?

Again, there is nothing profound or rhetorical in that question. The right-thinking leadership of many developing countries entirely understands that point. They are frustrated by the gas-lighting that comes from this globalist institutions which enforce austerity measures which breed corruption and poverty, all while preaching that these same countries haven’t done enough to increase transparency and fight poverty.

Real sovereignty for the so-called global south is intimately tied to two related factors: import substitution industrialization using 3D printing, and a physical economy based in automated production of super-long life goods. This must up-end the present planned obsolescence paradigm with its intentionally shortened PLC (product life cycle). A functional bridge between here and there, is an increased focus on regional trade, which encourages regional cooperation and enlarges spatial conceptions of the sovereign towards a growing multipolarity.

Instead of focusing on this very obvious solution to a whole range of problems which are, generously speaking, fairly represented in the UN Agenda 2030 goals, we are being corralled down a path which unjustifiably focuses on climate change. But critics like Vance Packard in ‘The Waste Makers’ (1960) already saw the problem, and the solution.

We are therefore in a race towards next-generation productive technologies, like localized 3D printing (3DP) which ultimately work against globalized production, against interdependency, and the supply-line security problems, like war, that comes along with it.

The underlying rationale of globalized production, is the exploitation of low wage labor and the maintenance of endemic global inequalities. But as techniques of production improve, and more materials can be synthesized, the twin drivers of this paradigm – low-wage production and raw material extraction – are overcome together.

Ending planned obsolescence vs. ending climate change, represent two different paradigms. The first is connected to a forward looking paradigm reflective of a real and sustainable 4IR, and the second is a cynical ruse not only to limit the rational development of the physical economy, but also human horizons.

The synthesizing of materials eliminates the ‘carbon emissions’ produced by the entire present model of resource extraction, including those emitted by hundreds of millions of workers who generate otherwise unnecessary emissions upstream and downstream, globalized supply-lines, while the carbon footprint for material synthesis will ultimately be smaller. And this much matters only if a real problem is carbon emissions, which is arguable at best.

In other words, we can eliminate those emissions without eliminating the human beings, and moreover, without limiting the quality of life they enjoy. To the contrary, overcoming artificial scarcity in its present form would see a great improvement in quality of life and life expectancy.

And so the focus on improving hyper-efficient methods of globalized distribution is missing the point, if relatively equivalent investment into R&D can get better results in the arena of material synthesis. Synthetic materials are based on polymers which are stronger and longer-lasting than natural or regenerated materials, and lend towards longer lasting products.

What is more efficient than the most efficient delivery system? Not having to distribute it at all.

Nations are not Bound to Agenda 2030 by Force of Treaty

Are most UN member states really ‘all in’ with the climate change game? The vast majority of countries tied into the IMF/UN system of neo-colonialism, are simply waiting out the clock, as alternatives such as BRICS grow against the petro dollar.

The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), known also as Agenda 2030, use the language of post-colonialism to reinforce a new kind of neo-colonialism. The system behind this push being so-called ‘sustainability’ is what is actually unsustainable, and so developing countries see they simply need to bear with it until it finally implodes.

A lot of unrelated environmental concerns have been collapsed into ‘climate change’. And climate change has been dogmatically tied to carbon emissions. The primary issue then deals with carbon emissions, therefore, even though it is just a single goal (goal 13) among the 17 goals of Agenda 2030.

Seeing the UN graphic below, we can see that the following goals are actually all important matters: 6 (Clean water and sanitation); 7 (Affordable and clean energy); 9 (Industry, innovation and infrastructure); 11 (Sustainable cities and communities); 12 (Responsible consumption and production); 14 (Life below water); 15 (Life on land).

And so it’s of peculiar interest that 13, climate action (which is merely carbon emissions), is the guiding logic behind all of these, when in fact it is failure to address goal 12 (Responsible consumption and production) which represents the entire economic, social, and environmental cancer of this age, a danger so clear and present and yet rooted so deeply in this paradigm, that the IMF cannot propose a solution that can tackle this.

Goal 12 – responsible consumption and production – is the foundation of all the other goals, if we are to take them seriously. Not goal 13 – climate action – as that in fact goes in the opposite direction. This point will be underscored.

All of this seems so terrible, so why did the majority of UN member states sign on? In fact, Agenda 2030 is not a treaty, it is non-binding and not a criteria for UN membership, and its provisions are not enforceable through the mechanism of treaties between sovereign states. Rather, it was reached ‘by consensus’, whatever that means. What has been constructed as Agenda 2030 presents an outline at best, using input from many UN member states, of what they ‘could’ agree to someday.

Therefore, many countries will make their own sovereign announcements about reaching this part, or that part, of the various goals. This will receive a lot of press, much of it misleading, because these were decisions these countries make on their own. Many of these already overlap with their own national agenda (poverty reduction, clean water, gender inclusiveness). But they do so on their own accord, and this point is critical.

Predatory multinationals like to use provisions on 2030 to place the spectre of global governance and shared goals as justification for policies which undermine the economic and sovereign foundation of developing countries.

But the 17 goals of Agenda 2030 (SDG) represent merely a ‘plan of action’, which countries are not obliged to separately from various accords and treaties which they might presently or later agree to, or which multinationals may attempt to unilaterally impose as a condition of trade, (often backed by the IMF) but which carry their own names and legal details.

Many of the concerns that these goals address are the right ones for countries to be focusing on, and therein lies the rub. Just like with the 4IR, Agenda 2030 turns these on their head, and cynically misdirects them towards a neo-Malthusian genocide.

The ugly truth about cap and trade, and all similar schemes to enforce this globally, is that they do not really reduce carbon emissions, if most other factors remain the same. Among the other factors required for this scheme to approximate ‘working’, is to reduce population size. Note that this is not to reduce the rate of population growth, but to reduce the total human population in absolute terms.

In other words, at the heart of the 17 SDG for 2030, the primary source of carbon footprints are human beings.

Overcoming this Paradigm’s Problem

Just like with the human development indexes, and broader economic concerns, Agenda 2030 seizes upon legitimate concerns for the environment, human exposure to carcinogenic materials, birth defects, and clean air and water.

But these become subsumed under the heading of global warming (or, in explaining cooling spells, ‘climate change’), in such an incoherent way that one cannot speak about the legitimate concerns without being forced to answer for climate change.

Innovations that potentiate a 4IR, like 3DP, contain much potential. But there are already existing solutions to the production/income and distribution/purchase cycle plaguing humanity in the face of the rapid automation process underway.

These solutions are as simple as using higher quality parts to substitute the ‘planned to break’ parts in already existing products, all other factors of production being left untouched.

Indeed, we hold that while there are hypothetically limits to growth, the biggest limitation at present is limited thinking about what growth looks like and what new possibilities and discoveries it holds.

Taken together, we can see that overcoming the wastefulness of economies of scale is not the problem which the elite’s conception of Agenda 2030 is aimed at. They want to preserve some type of system of subsidized commodity production, perhaps making products less sturdy, and commonly shared through a drone-delivery rental system.

This would decrease product lifespan while also requiring less goods to be produced, connected to the rental system and a lower total human population.

In some tenacious balance between population reduction and flimsy rental goods, the WEF proposes that this will result in a net decrease in carbon emissions. In looking at the second part of that balance, we can conclude that the population reduction must be significant in order to justify the net reduction claim.

Instead, we maintain that ‘two heads are better than one’, that the increase in human population has a multivariate, non-linear effect towards improvement not only of the human experience, but its positive interrelation with the entire noosphere.

The author can be reached at FindMeFlores@gmail.com

BRICS’ Influence Grows as Three New Members Join the New Development Bank

Paul Antonopoulos, independent geopolitical analyst

The New Development Bank (NDB) was created by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) in 2015. The BRICS bank, as it is more commonly known, invests mainly in developing economies in areas such as transportation, water and sanitation, clean energy, digital infrastructure, social infrastructure and urban development. On September 2, NDB President Marcos Troyjo announced that the United Arab Emirates, Uruguay and Bangladesh were the first members of the bank’s expansion.

“New members will have in NDB a platform to foster their cooperation in infrastructure and sustainable development,” said NDB President Marcos Troyjo in a statement. “We will continue to expand the bank’s membership in a gradual and balanced manner.”

The UAE, Uruguay and Bangladesh will become fully fledged members once internal processes of the NDB is complete. However, the NDB’s ambitions do not end there, and according to Brazilian newspaper Estadão, a fourth partner, likely from Africa, should be announced by the end of the year. In fact, the Shanghai-based bank anticipates three to four new members per year, reaching up to 20 members in the coming years.

Although BRICS is obviously already represented in South America and South Asia by Brazil and India respectively, the accession of Uruguay and Bangladesh into the NDB allows the bank to act on a regional scale. It also opens the possibility for future membership in BRICS. With NDB members neighboring each other in South America and South Asia, the bank has the possibility to finance binational projects that promotes regional economic and transportation integration.

For his part, Emirati Minister of State for Financial Affairs, Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, said: “The United Arab Emirates membership in the New Development Bank represents a new step to enhance the role of the UAE economy on the global stage, especially in light of the great capabilities and expertise that the country possesses in supporting infrastructure projects and sustainable development. This monumental step would not have been achieved without the vision and direction of the UAE leadership, who believe in the importance of supporting development projects around the world, especially in emerging economies.”

The UAE has undergone a massive transformation in the past quarter of a century, turning desert wastelands into thriving economic hubs and progressing from reactionary Salafi ideology to one of tolerance and open-mindedness. As recently as the beginning of the Syrian War in 2011, the UAE was backing jihadist groups, but in a matter of only a few years reverted from this policy and became far more moderate and independent in their decision making and pursuit of partnerships.

Originally a major oil exporter, and still is, the UAE has now diversified its economy so that it is in line with the UN 2030 agenda to end poverty and hunger, protect human rights and gender equality, and protect the planet from degradation. The UAE has immense resources that can be directed towards projects that are in line with not only the UN’s vision, but also the NDB’s.

BRICS signed an agreement on Tuesday involving 28 projects in the fields of computer programming, technical services, culture, art, economy, commerce, logistics and transportation – with a total value of more than $2.1 billion. The UAE’s contribution to such projects will be fundamental in deciding whether the mega-rich Arab country should ascend into BRICS and not only the NDB.

The selection of the UAE, Uruguay and Bangladesh as the first three non-founding partners of the NDB indicates the intentions of BRICS – regional expansion with a focus on economic and transportation cooperation. This cooperation, as well as integration, is especially crucial as the world struggles to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic fallout. Because of this, the NDB will likely focus in the short to medium term on the rejuvenation of member countries following the pandemic, particularly in transitioning to a digital economy and green energy.

It was estimated that emerging economies needed about $2 trillion in infrastructure investments per year for the next 20 years to maintain growth rates, however, commercial banks have refused to meet the gap. Essentially, the NDB partly fills the gap that Western financial institutions refuse to do.

By positioning itself to take advantage of a unique opportunity to project a new vision for financing, the NDB is challenging the dominance of Western financial institutions and also progressing the prestige of BRICS in its endeavour to advance a multipolar world order. The accession of the UAE sees one of the Middle East’s most influential countries join the NDB, whilst Uruguay and Bangladesh open the path for regional integration under the context of BRICS, something that has not occurred since the group was established in 2006.

Source: InfoBrics