Civil Unrest, The State of Pension Funds and How Empires End

Source: Silver Doctors

Armstrong: Get Ready for Civil Unrest On A Scale Not Seen Since The Revolutions In The USA Or In France

February 26, 2018

Martin Armstrong says we’re in the midst of the collapse of democracy, pensions and socialism. Here’s just how bad it’s gonna get…

by Martin Armstrong of Armstrong Economics

I have been warning that we are in the midst of (1) collapse in democracy as the bureaucracy attempts to ensure they get their’s, (2) the collapse of socialism, which is the implosion of social programs, and (3) the collapse of pensions set in motion by the artificially low-interest rates for the past 10 years.

Once we entered this Private Wave in 1985, we have entered the Crisis in Democracy where career politicians are the hallmark of how empires, nations, and city-states come to a dramatic end. I wrote about this trend back in 1985 and 1987.

With each passing day, we read about another pension crisis in some municipal government or system. Now across the UK teacher/lectures began a month of student disruptions over the proposed changes in their pensions plans. The strikes have even produced refund claims by students over missing tuition time. This is the collapse not of Capitalism, but Socialism as all the promised benefits cannot be provided.

The pension system has a £6bn deficit and thus there is no choice but to cut. Some 61 universities are being affected with many teachers/lecturers simply walking-out leaving the students with no education. The teachers/lecturers voted to strike and now it has gone on for some two weeks. The assumed they would strike and the money would fall from heaven. That has not been the case.

Individually, universities pay into a pool called the Universities Superannuation Scheme. That fund is then managed by a professional Fund Management team that produces a return annually. The investment returns, future contributions, and management costs should then be calculated and projections given at every management meeting between the two (Fund Managers and the administrators of the USS).

I have written many times how the central banks were setting the stage for the next crisis. In truth, with low-interest rates and pensions being invested “conservatively” into bonds, the warnings have been discussed many times in the past but everyone has assumed it would get better. They never counted on the European Central Bank keeping the rate low to negative for almost 10 years.

Please go to Silver Doctors to read the entire article.
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Source: The Solari Report

The State of Our Pension Funds

by Catherine Austin Fitts • January 22, 2018

“Money is and always has been political. Our central concern should not be with [money’s] technology but with the political and legal framework with which it operates”. ~ Dr. Rebecca L. Spang

By Catherine Austin Fitts

Table of Contents

I. Introduction

II. Global Pension Fund Assets

III. US Pension Fund Assets

IV. A Comment on US Pension Fund History

V. Recent Global and US Pension Fund Performance

VI. The Pension Fund Crisis Narrative

VII. My Financial History as an Alternative Narrative

VIII. Total Economic Returns – Why Are We Financing Governments, Companies and Products and Services with Negative Returns?

IX. Other Issues

X. The Bottom Line

XI. What Can I Do?

XII. Appendix

I. INTRODUCTION

Our planetary governance and financial system currently operates significantly outside of the law. Whether the cost of war, organized crime, corruption, environmental damage, suppression of technology or secrecy, this lawlessness – and the lawlessness it encourages in the general population – represents a heavy and expensive drag on all aspects of our society, our economy and our landscape.

The underfunding of pension funds in the United States is a symptom of that drag. It is not a self-contained crisis.

We are told that we can fix the pension funds by saving more – such as by increasing the contributions from beneficiaries and/or taxpayers. As portrayed in our graphic for the cover of this 2017 Annual Wrap Up, this is the equivalent of trying to fill a milk bucket by milking more cows when the problem is that there is a hole in the bucket. Why put more milk in the bucket until the hole is fixed or the farmer gets a new bucket?

If my subscribers and clients are representative, many people in the US general population – either as beneficiaries or taxpayer – are reluctant to invest more money in the retirement system. Many do not trust it.

• They do not trust pension fund governance and management to treat beneficiaries’ interests as primary.

• They do not trust money managers to invest wisely. They believe Wall Street promotes fraudulent securities.

• They do not trust central banks, the federal government and some state and local governments to behave responsibly.

• They are concerned that laws and regulations will be changed in an unfavorable manner – that their pension will become the financial equivalent of a “roach motel.” The money goes in, but it does not come out.

• They feel cheated by public agencies that engage in political patronage, for example, that enable workers to game their final working year or two (through overtime, extra shifts, undeserved last-minute promotions, and other manipulative gimmicks) to retire with pension payments that are as much as double what they are rightfully entitled to in the absence of such gimmicks.

Under these circumstances, the decision to avoid increased investment in pension plans or retirement vehicles may, in fact, be a wise decision, albeit it makes the underfunding “crisis” worse.

Addressing pension fund underfunding in the United States will require ensuring integrity in pension fund governance and investment policies where it has been eroded. It likely will also require the successful return to a model of household and family wealth accumulation where individuals and families control the governance and management of their assets instead of depending on centrally controlled systems. Family wealth has the distinct advantage of returning control of investment decisions to individuals. However, this is hardly what the US establishment wants. The centralization of power depends on the increasing control and concentration of family financial capital.

Whichever path we take, the success of our pension fund and retirement assets and their impact on financial markets and society will necessitate addressing the integrity of governmental and corporate governance in the global financial system.

This is the same point that we repeatedly make on the Solari Report. Our economy is a dynamic ecosystem. We cannot isolate one part and “fix it.” If there is a fundamental and systemic imbalance, such as corruption or lawlessness, it must be dealt with on a crosscutting basis.

If our political process delivers profits and a cheap cost of capital for insiders, while considering the general population expendable, the solution is not for everyone else to save more in the face of overwhelming fiscal, monetary and financial debasement due to demands by the first group. Indeed, the centralizers have become the financial equivalent of nymphomaniacs – kicking the capital centralization into liquidation of human and environmental capital to provide more cheap capital to the insiders. The solution is to address the fundamental corruption of the political mechanism. Over the long run the privileges afforded the few are shrinking the total pie.

I chose pension funds as the theme for the 2017 Annual Wrap Up to invest time in reviewing the current state of global and US pension plans. For a complete list of the most useful studies, book and articles I read as well as website sources I used, see our Bibliography section.

Please go to The Solari Report to read this important information.
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The suggestion here would be to go through as many news articles and bits of information including video clips to discern properly exactly what is going on in America when reading titles like the following “People Are Scared!” Wealthy oligarchs in America are “scared?” That doesn’t seem very likely. Especially since many of these wealthy oligarchs own bitcoin portfolios worth millions and millions of dollars and can easily access this wealth from any location on earth. As if these billionaire technology oligarchs are concerned about pensions.

What does seem likely is that some of these American billionaires are buying property in New Zealand to use as locations of peaceful refuge just like Mark Zuckerberg has bought his 700 acre private estate in Hawaii when America faces its coming economic turmoil. What do these wealthy oligarchs know that is not known by most of humanity? Do they have access to information suggesting war is coming with Russia concerning escalating tensions in Ukraine and Syria?

As the article below suggests, do this wealthy American oligarch class expect “civil unrest” coming in America that could see incredible violence in cities all across America? Do these wealthy oligarch class see a possible war coming with Russia and taking precautions by preparing their selected locations in New Zealand to avoid the catastrophe and destruction with war.

Powerful People Are Scared! Billionaires Run To New Zealand In Mass—What Do They Know That We Don’t?

 

Evidence suggesting war is approaching:

Averting the US-Russia Warpath

Thousands of US troops in Israel for joint military drill

Ukraine’s General Staff announces imminent war with Russia

 

Americans being coaxed on to arm themselves with weapons to prepare for what exactly?

“Never Seen Such A Large Crowd”: Record Numbers Flock To Florida Gun Show After Shooting

 

Does anything make any sense in America? Teacher’s pension funds are invested in gun stocks?

Teacher Pension Funds in 12 States Are Invested in Gun Stocks

 

 

 

 

 

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