Archive for April 10th, 2017

Case of Konoklota Mahila Urban Cooperative Bank: A women based bank in Assam

April 10, 2017

There is little doubt that our financial media is highly biased towards its coverage of just large city based banks. Most of these banks are largely transactional in nature which just attract lot of attention due to their scale of operations and jazz surrounding them. The media hardly covers small relationship banks which are playing an equally important role serving small people in remote locations.

So getting to know about Konoklota Mahila Urban Cooperative Bank via this story is really nice. The bank is an all women bank (employees and customers) based in Jorhat (Assam). It was started in 1998 by Lakhimi Barua. In a way it was a precursor to Mahila Union Bank launched by the UPA Government which was more out of populism than designing it to really serve women customers.

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Why we don’t need macroeconomic data in a free economy

April 10, 2017

Frank Shostak says most macroeconomic data is just hype:

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Why is Hungary trying to close George Soros’s prestigious university?

April 10, 2017

On April 4, 2017, the Hungarian Parliament amended a law regulating higher education in a way that has been widely reported as targeting the Central European University (CEU), founded by Hungarian-born U.S. financier George Soros. The amended law requires universities to open campuses in the country in which they are registered; and to cease operations in Hungary unless the country they are in enters a bilateral educational agreement with the Hungarian government.

Observers have been calling this the Lex CEU given that it appears to be tailored to kick out one specific institution: the CEU, one of Hungary’s leadinginstitutions of higher education. While it operates only in Budapest, CEU’s degrees are recognized in the United States. If the amendment goes into effect, CEU would be required to establish a U.S. campus, or close.

So why is the Hungarian government going to war with an individual university?

Givern Soros recent track record, the reasons are not difficult to guess. Soros has been against illiberal policies followed by the current President:

Orbán uses Soros as a symbol of globalist interference and disregard for national sovereignty. For instance, after human rights watchdogs condemned Hungary’s treatment of refugees on the Hungarian-Serb border, a government communique asserted that “Soros’s people are using lies to attack Hungarian policemen and soldiers defending our borders.” Soros further symbolizes the cosmopolitan-liberal and international opposition that has been criticized Orbán’s illiberal practices. In fact, international observers note that CEU is widely considered a last bastion of liberal values in Hungary.

A new election campaign of the far-right opposition reads: “While you are working, they are stealing.” In the coming months, Orbán is bound to continue his fight against the bogeymen he created in fear of becoming one himself.

How Soros continues to bother Central bankers even without taking a financial position..

Ending the Federal Reserve: Top Down vs bottom up…

April 10, 2017

There are Fed dissenters who not just criticise policies but vouch for its closure. So far, we have known likes of Ron Paul who have tried to argue for the closure using the Federal Government route. However, there is  another approach in which US States use their constitutional powers to undermine the money issued by Fed. The first approach is called top down and second bottoms up.

William Greene, an advocate of second approach explains:

Since its inception, the U.S. Federal Reserve’s monetary policies have led to a decline of over 95% in the purchasing power of the U.S. dollar. As a result, there have been several attempts to curtail or eliminate the Federal Reserve’s powers (e.g., the efforts of Rep. Louis T. McFadden in the 1930s; the efforts of Rep. Wright Patman in the 1970s; the efforts of Rep. Henry Gonzalez in the 1990s; and the efforts of Rep. Ron Paul since the 1990s). However, none have proven successful to date, due mainly to the constraints of strong political opposition at the national level. In contrast to these “top‐down” attempts at the national level, this paper proposes an alternative approach to ending the Federal Reserve’s monopoly on money: the “Constitutional Tender Act,” a bill template that can be introduced in every state legislature in the nation, returning each of them to adherence to the U.S. Constitution’s “legal tender” provisions of Article I, Section 10.

This approach would have a greater likelihood of success for a number of reasons. First, it is decentralized: rather than facing concerted political opposition at a single Federal level, it attacks the issue at the State level, where strategies and tactics can be adapted to the types and amount of political opposition they encounter. Second, it is diffused: it can be attempted in any number of States, which can cause the opposition to spread its resources much more thinly than would be necessary at the Federal level. Finally, it is legally sound: it relies on the U.S. Constitution’s negative mandate in Article I, Section 10, that “No State shall… make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts.” Therefore, in contrast to “top‐down” attempts to “end the Fed,” a “bottom‐up” approach using “constitutional tender” laws will find greater success.

He points how Top Down approaches have been vetoed by some or the other official from Federal Government.

US monetary history is quite different in many ways to other countries…

Lessons from Hitler’s Rise…

April 10, 2017

Christopher Browning reviews a book by Volker Ullrich: Hitler: Ascent 1889–1939 (translated from the German by Jefferson Chase).

While reviewing the book, Browning points to similarities and differences between Trump’s rise.

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