16th May, 2018
How to advance a fragile peace
Gravity doesn't exactly bully you in to obeying its dictates,
yet it is an efficient force across the entire universe.
Universal physical principles, a.k.a. the laws of nature,
are "weak" forces but their impact cannot be avoided.
The power of a principled approach to politics is similar. It
might take time to take effect, but as seen in the case of UK
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, it can become unstoppable.
The impact of China's Belt and Road Initiative is the
same, drawing nations into its gravitational field. China
was the only nation to respond to reality after the 2007-
08 global financial crisis, creating state-backed credit to
unleash physical economic development. Countries like
Australia can resist as much as they like, and even try to
sabotage its progress in the name of upholding the Anglo-American
"rules-based order", but the brute-force imposition
of "our rules" is ultimately no match for economic
progress which brings tangible benefits to people.
Articles include the following:
- Treasury concedes to 'benefits' of breaking up the banks
- Building infrastructure will support population growth
- Defence industry plan entrenches colonial status
- Foreign interference and mass surveillance
- Diana and 007: A case study in deception
- Establishment hacks muddy the waters on Skripal case
- Trump's dangerous Middle East gambles
- Veteran CIA officer assaulted while protesting torture
- Banking fraternity felons—except for Goldman Sachs
- Can USA, China, Russia cooperate to secure Korean peace?
- Solving 'big city malaise'
Click here for more...
15th May, 2018
Treasury concedes to ‘benefits’ of breaking up the banks
In its last day of hearings on 27 April the banking royal commission asked Treasury, the regulators and the banks to justify so-called vertical integration, i.e. banks owning the businesses that create the financial products that the banks advise their customers to buy. In response, Treasury has done a backflip of sorts from its years of defending vertical integration, to concede that there will be benefits from a structural separation of banking. For their part, each of the big banks forcefully opposed structural separation. If anything, this is the best argument for it—if the criminal banks don’t want to be broken up, it must be right!
In her summary of the previous fortnight of royal commission hearings, which had thrown up shocking examples of the financial advice operations of AMP and CBA exploiting their customers, Counsel Assisting Rowena Orr asked for submissions to answer the question: “Does vertical integration … serve the interests of clients? If so, how?”
Treasury’s submission demonstrates the impact of the royal commission. Treasury boffins—many of whom are past and/or future bankers by virtue of the revolving door between banks and the department—know that they can no longer defend the status quo, as they have for years in response to the Citizens Electoral Council’s campaign for a Glass-Steagall separation of commercial banks from all other financial services. For instance, in a 28 April 2016 letter for a constituent of the then-Member for Longman Wyatt Roy, Treasurer Scott Morrison claimed that “the Australian financial system already exhibits a high degree of structural separation”. At the time, the CEC exposed this claim to be false; now Treasury has changed its tune.
Print latest media releases as flyers (A4 PDF)
Radio interviews with CEC Leaders