Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Most Evil Bank Scheme Ever

Conventional economics, so I understand, ignores the problem of debt and monetary inflation, because it's assumed that the money spreads quickly and evenly throughout the system. Wages up, prices up, nobody's hurt, right?

Wrong. Just like the Oklahoma Land Rush of 1893, who gets there first wins all. This is why those in the FIRE economy have taken over.

But you know, they are small thinkers, all of them, even the billionaires. What they've done so far is like building a faulty nuclear reactor; what they could do is like dropping the H-bomb.

Here's the scenario:

1. Two new banks are created - let's call them Orcbank and Trollbank. No branches - don't need them if you don't deal direct with the public. The problem with the housing bubble is the people. They have to be missold mortgages and then have to keep up the ridiculous payments while their equity tanks. Far too messy.

2. The Federal Government borrows a scad of money from the Federal Reserve - it doesn't matter how much, because the FR makes it up out of nothing anyway (watch Glenn Beck's recent crisp summation of the Fed's history).

3. This money is divided into two equal parts and deposited interest-free in Orcbank and Trollbank.

4. Orcbank lends whatever is the legal (who makes the laws?) maximum multiple of its deposit, to Trollbank; Trollbank does the same for Orcbank.

5. Then the banks go shopping. They go to all other banks, plus Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, buying up any residential property that is now worth less than its mortgage. Not at phony book value valuations: the real, disaster-filled forced-sale valuations. Many billions, maybe trillions of dollars'-worth. And Orcbank and Trollbank buy the lot, for the full value of the debt, cash on the nail.

6. You now have two monster insolvent banks. Oh, dear.

7. No, you don't. You merge Trollbank with Orcbank, forming the new First Bank of Mordor. And poof! the debt disappears, every last cent of it. All the assets (mortgages) and liabilities (money loaned out) on one are exactly the same as, and counterbalanced by, the other. Matter meets antimatter; mutual annihilation of all assets and liabilities.

8. What's left? The deposits, which are returned to the Federal Reserve via the Government. The interest? We'll come to that shortly.

9. Oh, and there's the not-so-little matter of free-and-clear ownership of gigantic quantities of residential real estate. First Bank of Mordor, wishing to have nothing to do with such a tedious and messy business as moneylending, deregisters as a bank and becomes the Sauron Real Estate Trust. Sauron can rent out property at whatever rates it likes, whatever the market will bear - having no debts, everything after maintenance and repairs is profit.

10. Sorry, that should read "everything after maintenance, repairs and management costs" is profit. In fact, you don't want to make a profit: you just want to pay everyone who's in on the scam. No pesky shareholders, please, so no dividends. If the Fed can be a private company and own America's government, Sauron can be a private company and own America's real estate.

All it needs is the OK, and there's a small enough number of people to see right about their doubtless and naturally very large and absolutely confidential though never defined ongoing expenses, if they're willing to take the money. And the Fed will need some interest for the money it loaned for that short period of time; plus I guess a few billion in administrative fees. Who cares? It's only money.

Upside? Some very happy people in blue suits who just relocated to the Caribbean or that island Scaramanga fitted out so luxuriously. Insolvent banks bailed out - and you can always rinse 'n' repeat if you didn't do enough the first time round (by the way, there's always the commercial real estate bubble to rescue, too).

Downside? Joe Average pays rent forever. But there's not that many properties he can buy instead of renting. In fact, you may just have turned a bubble into an incredible shortage and so up go valuations again. After all, they're not making any more land. Who knows, when the price is right Sauron may start selling tranches of real estate, just to ease the market.

And if Joe Average doesn't like it? What do you think you've got police, Army and the National Guard for?

No, surely they wouldn't do it. Surely you'd never get this past enough legislators and regulators to make it stick. But I'm telling you this idea publicly, just in case it's already been germinating in someone else's twisted little head. That's what you pay quants, lawyers and accountants for - crooked schemes to steal from the people.

This is the potential of fractional reserve banking, governments that lend free money, crony capitalism and the secret magic of the Federal Reserve. They'd have to dress it up as rescuing the system and the people; you know, being responsible managers of the economy.

All they have to do is dare. And look what they dare to do already.


James Higham said...

One of the best ever from you, clearly set out. Pity there weren't any paragraphs - twas a hard read.

Paddington said...

Brilliant and twisted idea. Probably wouldn't work, but you never know.