Friday, April 30, 2010

Damon Vrabel - Goldman Sachs, Chess, and the Godfather

Just this morning I was discussing that there were obviously games being played with Goldman. According to Mr. Vrabel, that game is chess.

And look at who he points to as a probably power behind the scenes, none other than the very same JPMorgan mentioned this morning:

Goldman Sachs, Chess, and the Godfather

Between the SEC charges and the congressional panels, the government is finally doing its job going after Goldman Sachs, right? And this last week in April ends with the Justice Department picking up the baton, which puts Goldman under threat of criminal prosecution. Things have suddenly gotten serious.

Two weeks ago on a radio interview, I suggested the SEC investigation will either be a chump charge to pacify the masses or it might potentially be the beginning of the sacrifice of Goldman Sachs for reasons explained below. The Justice Department referral makes the latter more probable.

Criminal prosecution is indeed appropriate. Goldman deserves to be broken up. In fact, all banks of that size need to be broken up so that power is passed down to state and local economies, and countries are no longer held hostage by the mega firms. Is that what is happening here? Are we being saved from the financial parasites that have destroyed our economy?

Childlike Perspective: Left vs. Right

The left thinks so. The major media establishment is suddenly, as if by script, trumpeting the idea that government is cracking down on boogie man Goldman Sachs. This view says, “Yey! Our good government servants that have our best interests at heart are fixing those greedy Wall Street parasites.” That’s the entire purpose of the congressional panels—a stageshow for the Wall-Street-funded media to promote this narrative. But those very same government officials were the ones who did what Goldman Sachs representatives and the real powers behind Wall Street told them for the last 20+ years. They still get all of their money from Wall Street. Have they suddenly turned on the very people who feed them? Of course not.

The right thinks this crackdown is bad because Wall Street and Goldman represent a benevolent free market. This view goes beyond childlikeness and approaches insanity, like Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein thinking of himself as an angel from God. Wall Street, the Fed cartel, is a government creation. There is nothing “free market” about it. It is the most powerful monopolized cartel in the history of the world. Conservative media mouthpieces who trumpet Wall Street do not have a clue about our monetary system. They have never looked beyond the false religion of neoclassical economics, which conveniently ignores the issue of money.

Conclusion: rule out the simplistic view of the left and right. The Washington DC government has served Wall Street and big business for decades. There is no divide between big government and big business. They go hand in hand. Neither could exist without the other.

Adolescent Perspective: “They’re All Criminals”

Another group of people, far more accurate than the left vs. right disciples, think that Wall Street is just a predatory bunch. Bringing down Goldman Sachs would therefore be a good thing in their view. But they think DC government is a predatory bunch as well. They see through the salesmanship and PR pumped through the corporate media. They understand that frat boy behavior creates a self-serving clique whether on Wall Street or in Washington DC. In fact, they understand how the boys in both groups get their power from working together. It is all one club.

Conclusion: as correct as this view is, it leaves us paralyzed. Adolescents are brilliant at seeing through adult facades, but they may fail to see the higher level picture.

The Godfather: Who the Criminals Work For

The key to what is really happening is to understand that the suits we see on television are not in charge. A bunch of random self-serving people would not be able to pull off strategic, coordinated plans—the adolescent view is only half correct. There are people far above the pay grade of a senator like Chris Dodd or a wage servant like Lloyd Blankfein. He may be the top operating officer at Goldman, but by definition that means he is a servant of the ownership class—the Anglo mafia—that controls all money in the system. The fact that he earns a wage and gets a W2 at the end of the year means he and his firm are not in charge.

Goldman Sachs is effectively a capo regime. It is a powerful player in a game of controlled chaos. It was given a territory and was then expected to deliver the goods. And Goldman delivered better than all the other capos in the system. It reaped the rewards. Goldman’s officers were paid better than any other regime throughout the last several decades. Its hit men were the most productive. The most loyal—Rubin, Paulson, etc—have been inducted into the upper level circle around the Godfather and removed from the stressful street jobs that bring public scrutiny. Those guys made their hundreds of millions and no longer care whether Goldman exists or not. And from the Godfather’s perspective, there comes a time when capos have served their purpose. At that point, their life is in danger.

“The Game of the Century:” Bobby Fischer and the Queen Sacrifice

But capos typically are not sacrificed unless doing so would serve a Machiavellian purpose. So what would be the purpose of sacrificing Goldman? Well, in one of the more famous games in chess history, 13-year-old Bobby Fischer brilliantly pounced on his opponent and guaranteed victory by boldly sacrificing his queen on move 17. The queen is the most powerful chess piece. Average people would narrowly play a game defensively protecting their queen and assuming any chance to take your queen would lead to victory. But that elementary view would be precisely the weakness upon which a true chess mind, a Godfather, would prey. Beware of the bait being laid in front of you.

Goldman Sachs is very much analogous to a queen in the chess game being played by the ownership class—the richest pools of private capital controlled by multi-generational wealthy families that hover above countries via the central banking system. It has been one of the most potent pieces on the board for many years, its most recent attack being on the entire nation of Greece. But as the endgame comes into view, perhaps the most brilliant play to reach checkmate is now the queen sacrifice. Goldman employees had better be sending their resumes to JP Morgan Chase—a critical chess piece in the endgame that will be protected at all costs.

The Great Global Restructuring

What is the end game? The ownership class is attempting to restructure the world under a new financial system. We have had a global currency for a long time—the US dollar—but it has run its course. Wall Street has leveraged up the dollar as far as possible. The dollar now holds most nations hostage thanks to the power of the bond market, the central banking system. The ownership class needs a new debt-based currency and banking structure to maintain control as they pump the capital engine through the 21st century. This is why the G20 is working feverishly to build up the IMF, BIS, and new global financial rules. This time the production center will be China rather than the US, which is why China and Japan are the most asset-rich countries in the world while the western world is the most indebted. The west is on track for decades of slow decline while Asia is on the verge of seeing “the rising sun.”

So unfortunately the government vs. Goldman Sachs story has nothing to do with reforming Wall Street in the interest of average Americans. Rather it is a strategic move to further the endgame of consolidating Wall Street power, focusing public rage on Goldman to protect JP Morgan Chase, fueling new regulations to clamp down on the smaller banks that we so desperately need, and creating a global structure even bigger than the already “too big to fail” banking system. This may be setting up one of the biggest, most successful queen sacrifices in history. We should take the queen by all means—Goldman is a predator. But heed the lesson from 13-year-old Bobby Fischer. Be wary of checkmate.