‘Monarchs of Money’: How central bankers became the new ruling class

A new short documentary from the CBC titled The Monarchs of Money explains in hair-raising and gut-punching detail how “The world’s central banks have printed unimaginable amounts of money in recent years. Neil Macdonald explores what this means for the global economy and for your financial well-being.”

There’s also an accompanying written report, billed as the first in a series of articles to be collectively titled Power Shift, “on the rise of the central bankers and the global imposition of cheap credit”:

Quietly, without much public fuss or discussion, a new ruling class has risen in the richer nations. These men and women are unelected and tend to shun the publicity hogged by the politicians with whom they co-exist.

They are the world’s central bankers. Every six weeks or so, they gather in Basel, Switzerland, for secret discussions and, to an extent at least, they act in concert. The decisions that emerge from those meetings affect the entire world. And yet the broad public has a dim understanding, if any, of the job they do. In fact, these individuals now wield at least as much influence over the lives of ordinary citizens as prime ministers and presidents.

The tool they have used to change the world so profoundly is one they alone possess: creating money out of thin air. There is an economic term for this: quantitative easing. More colloquially, it’s called printing money. Since the great economic meltdown in 2008, these central bankers have probably saved the world’s economy from collapse, and dragged it into the unknown at the same time. The amounts they have created are so vast as to be almost incomprehensible — trillions of dollars in pounds and euros, among other currencies.

. . . [T]here are two big concerns with what this new central banker elite has done. One is that no one really understands the consequences of pumping such vast amounts of money into the world economy. It’s already distorted the prices of certain assets, and some fear hyperinflation or market crashes are inevitable (the subject of tomorrow’s column). The other is that it’s caused a massive shift in wealth, from savers to borrowers, and is taking money out of the pockets of almost everyone approaching or at retirement age.

. . . Most of that generation grew up believing that if you save and exercise prudence that you will earn at least a modest return on your hard-earned money to keep you comfortable in your old age, perhaps along with a pension. But the money-printing orgy of the last five years looks to have shot that notion to smithereens. Very deliberately, the central bankers have punished savers, pushing interest rates so low that any truly safe investment β€” and older people are always advised to play it safe — yields a negative return when inflation is factored in.

. . . The plain fact. . . is that central bank- and government-imposed solutions to disasters caused by irresponsible, greedy, foolish behaviour are almost always carried out on the backs of the virtuous.

— Neil Macdonald, “The ‘monarchs of money’ and the war on savers,” CBC News, April 29, 2013

This is brilliant dot-connecting, big-picture journalism of the most valuable sort. Thank you Daniel Gill for the tip!

About Matt Cardin


Posted on May 2, 2013, in Economy and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I’m not an economist but if they’ve printed so much money and the CBC documentary comments the same thing.. why didn’t they give it to people? Think of all the single mothers or hard working parents that need daycare for their kids. Think of all the bad frozen food that we eat. Why don’t they use all of this money to lift people out of poverty, give them a wage and create a new servant class? If the problem is too much money then wouldn’t lifting people out of poverty be a way to help fix the system? After the banks recollect people’s money, and lowering interest on debts, and debt forgiving, they can just destroy the excess money after if the economy can’t take it

  2. Oh, that *bad* Ben Bernanke, he so obviously is the walking epitome of evil, isn’t he? And, um … wasn’t that bit about pushing interest rates so low about giving younger people the chance to take out home loans, start businesses or pay off their mortgages? Or did I miss something there?

    • You missed the part about the central banks losing all credibility that those young people won’t have their money stolen, or that corporate vultures won’t sack their nation’s entire economy, picking what flesh is left on the bones, and dumping their money into their pockets to spend on lucrative new investments.

      The best place to keep your money, and the only safe place, in in goods and precious metals (hell, copper!) and frankly in your bed. Or if you think they might come into your house and take any money you do have, maybe find some place where you can bury it, and then create some treasure maps.

    • The other thing you’re missing,
      is these central bankers get to live their parasitic suicidal dream, and banks that used to mean “People’s money” now mean, “The bank’s money that used to belong to people with bank accounts”

      What you know as a “bank”

      is now a corporate war-machine.

      And if countries like Libya become the jewel of Africa, a model of growth and sustainability and etc step out of line? Well, you take all of that “money” and spend it on ammunition and funnel support through the CIA to pay Al Qaeda (see what I did there?) to create terrorism that then affects the markets… all for profit

      This is the new war zone. Your wallet.

      World War 3

  3. Paul StJohn Mackintosh

    Written with commendable balance and objectivity, I must say. I’d rather believe that R’lyeh will rise tomorrow night when the Cthulhu cultist central bankers board their steam yacht Bilderberg to resurrect the Biggest Tentacular Walking Conspiracy of All.

    If this is what passes for ‘brilliant dot-connecting, big-picture’ stuff on the US left, no wonder the right gets away with cramming firearms into the hands of children.

    • The piece is from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Paul, not the U.S. Or perhaps you’re referring to the fact that the positive comment on it originated from me, an American? In any event, I stand by what I said. Macdonald’s journalistic approach is not based on conspiracy theorizing or sensationalism, nor is it based on a partisan view of the situation. He gives just due to both sides of the issue, emphasizing that the actions by central bankers have in fact saved the global economy, but that we’re now in a double-edged sword of a situation where these same actions have shifted the entire economic and even philosophical/semantic playing field in a new direction whose consequences are at the very least dramatic and, on the sharply negative end of all possibilities, perhaps catastrophic. I truly don’t see the conspiracy/propaganda quality in it that you attempt to identify — because it simply isn’t there. Nor does your rhetorical invocation of the lamentable reactionary right wing of current U.S. political and culture wars seem apt or appropriate.

      That said, I would love to see somebody try to write up an entire article making the case for your hypothetical Bilderberg-Cthulhu cult conspiracy, which is pretty delightful. Or were you being serious??? πŸ˜‰

  4. It’s not a conspiracy. Max Keiser of Russia Today news has been sounding the warning and the clarion call to move your paper money out of the banking system and into silver and gold and whatever, which you ought to bury into a hole in the ground really. The banking system has deliberately crashed the market on gold or silver at various times to stop it from going out of control in appreciation. but they’re just fucking with us we have to keep the pressure on them we have to help ourselves and prevent them from taking us for fools.

    What this documentary points out really well, is if the market wizards or whoever are going to literally punish savers and reward borrowers, then the last place you want to save your money is in a bank. This is the sad truth.

  1. Pingback: EBN 5.15.14 | prismplanet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.