Sunday, 3 March 2019

Fewer than 29 days to go: state of the nation

With fewer than 29 days to go before Brexit Day, here's a brief list of current developments, in no particular order and no particular completeness.

Toxic Debt: 2006 all over again

Toxic debt on the rise again, and it feels about ready to go pop (sources: Strategian, the MoneyGPS, Epic Economist, background from the Corbett Report; note the absence of mainstream media sources).  In particular, the Chinese people appear to have gone into the buy-to-let market... in a market where renting properties isn't mainstream.  So, this means buy-to-leave-empty-and-have-no-income.  Yet the muppets buying these flats - to hoard empty properties! -  are doing so by borrowing.  Debt without income to service it!  In other words, bad debt.  Really?!  Really???!!!!

Worse, the properties being built are con-jobs: knocked up so quickly that they fall down of their own accord (source: ADV China).

The sources above have all the relevant numbers, so I won't repeat them here, suffice it to say that the unmeasured growth of unmeasured bad debt in China is likely to be as large - if not larger - than the sub-prime debt crisis of America in 2006.  The impact on the non-Chinese world is likely to be significant, because although Chinese financial instruments might not be as embedded in Western banks like American sub-prime securitised debt was in the 2000s, virtually every aspect of Western economic life depends upon Chinese economic activity in some way shape or form.  Cut the funding from those activities - very few of them are truly autonomous from the Chinese Communist State - and they will collapse.  This shall include even Vietnam, to which a number of Chinese industrialists are sub-contracting... because China has become too expensive!

Meanwhile, a growing number of Americans cannot service the loans on their cars.  The lower-end of the American income scale is borrowing simply to feed the kids.  Even without securitisation, the incestuous nature of cross-borrowing between financial institutions makes for a very uncomfortable process of contagion when the truth about bad debt is "officially" recognised.

All governments have, to varying degrees opted to drown in debt, to make themselves beholden to the globalist banksters, encouraged by the corruption of Davos Man.

The end-game ain't looking pretty.  Although there is clearly air hissing from the debt bubble, the slow-motion burst will gather pace quickly as contagion kicks in.  Epic Economist reckons that we'll see the big bang in "summer or autumn this year [2019]", which I interpret to be 2019Q3.

Italy and France: a marriage of debt

As Bernard Connolly predicted in 1997 (source: Moneyweek), ignoring the demos is the sure-fire way to populism, a point which Nick Clegg inadvertently re-prove to Merryn Somerset Webb in 2015.

A common trigger point is recession, especially one that feel's self-induced (even though it's probably down to banksters fleecing the system to enrich themselves at everybody else's expense).  One country in which financialisation has ripened beautifully for the banksters to shake the tree is Italy.  And the Italian economy makes itself very close to that point (sources: Wolf Street, ZeroHedge).

Debt is a major part of the Italian problem, compounded by the tradition of retail investors being investors of their banks.  The banks are, in reality, bankrupt, but officially can continue to report that everything is lovely (this scam is common throughout the Eurozone: the truth must be suppressed at all costs).

And guess who piled into Italian debt?  Like they piled into Greek debt?  Yes, that's right, the masters of interpreting every toxic opportunity as a "buy" signal: French banks.

This is thus evidence that either Italian & French banks won't learn, or that the French government still hasn't realised how banksters have played the French state.

Italy doesn't seem to be as encumbered as France, although its current leaders have a lot to learn about powerless they really are.  While Macron is proposing the measures of the Ceaușescu state to brutalise the gilets jaunes, Italy voted for a populist government which seems set to roll back the excesses of globalism (co-ordinating its efforts with Austria and the Visegrad Four).

But how?  To take a small example, there was a suggestion - exaggerated into an international coprophagous media feeding frenzy - that the Italian government reminded the Italian central bank (what's left of it) that Italian gold belongs to the sovereign state of Italy, not the banksters.  Problem is, this might not be factually correct: some reports from the industry state that the bank does indeed own the gold, not the state (source: Bullionstar).  Ouch.  Whether this makes Salvini a target for bankster-sponsored assassination remains to be seen.

At the point where somebody in Italy suffers a loss of confidence, Italy and France are likely to descend quickly into a financial death spiral.  As they are both members of the Eurozone with Germany, that leaves Germany taxpayers on the hook to fund it, or to fund loans from banksters to bail out Italy and France.  Either way: banksters 3-0 taxpayers.

The Germans have banned short-selling of one particular company

Never willing to miss any opportunity to be as cretinously stupid as possible, the German financial regulator BaFin has banned short-selling of Wirecard (source: Moneyweek).

BaFin reckons it's protecting a new entrant from the harshness of the market.  But this, of course, is garbage.  What BaFin is actually protecting is a dodgy, opaque business model.  Typically European, BaFin addresses the symptoms, not the root cause, and provides relief for the people running Wirecard to keep on being as opaque as possible with their use (waste?) of investors' money.  The stench of corruption is overpowering.

This is thus evidence that BaFin won't learn.  Ever.  How very European.

Contraction of the car market, especially for diesel-fuelled engines

With the dieselgate scandal continuing its erosion of diesel-flavoured vested interests, demand for car has collapsed.  The two events are unlikely to be directly linked, but the co-incidence is more than merely a surprise.  Car manufacturers are retrenching, reducing production as marginal costs exceed marginal revenue, in part because of the increase of marginal costs imposed by the state(s) for emission controls.  In the American market, there even appears to be a shift by consumers away from cars and towards plush trucks (SUVs, 4x4, "Chelsea Tractors") (source: WolfStreet 1, WolfStreet 2).  Not so in Europe (at least, there's no evidence so far); if so, one has to question what economies of scale in manufacture could be possible at all.

Britain's mainstream media created its own feeding-frenzy fake-news fodder out of the story when Honda announced the closure of its factory in Swindon (I would link to a sample, but for the Corporate Communist Copyright Directive, see below).  In reality, with the Japanese very nearly in the the European Union's as-yet uncodefied equivalent of the European Economic Area, Honda probably finds it cheaper to manufacture in Japan and ship directly to the European continent, rather than to have production facilities in the European Union (especially the relatively-expensive and under-skilled UK).

Of course, the retards in the mainstream media whitter on about this being a consequence of Brexit and blah blah blah.  Issue-illiterate nonsense.  As one would expect.  The mainstream media is there only to lie to us.

Corporate Communist Copyright Directive

The European Parliament is still progressing with making the proposed Copyright Directive a de facto method of censoring the internet, using copyright law as the means to abolish-by-stealth freedom of expression.

The root issue, as explained by Billboard, is that the music/artist industries remain as deeply issue-illiterate as they always have been.  Essentially rent-seekers by nature, the artistic industries believe that if they have a right to intellectual property, then they can use it to print money just like a central bank can.  So anybody else who uses the alleged intellectual property is, in their minds, guilty-without-defence of theft.  So when social media platforms provide the tools by which ordinary plebs can do so without recourse, this is systemic theft.  On an industrial scale.

This, of course, is the same stupidity of the industry that had the industry wanting ban video recorders and cassette recorders.  They lost those two battles and to their "surprise", demand rose: the economic catastrophe they wrongly foresaw never happened.  But, having refused to learn the right lessons from those two battles, they are back at the table demanding money-making censorship... and this time the European Union is more than ready to listen to them.  (Offers of well-paid consultancies presumably help to open the appropriate ears.)

So much for the parasitic rent-takers of the artist industries.

But what Billboard judiciously omits is the impact of Article 11, the "link tax" (opinion from pressure group: Electronic Frontier Foundation).  Some artistry is written.  All written material has some sort of copyright behind it, including output from artists.  This blog, for example, links to copyrighted sources that the rights holders have chosen to publish for free on the internet.  Nevertheless, Article 11 requires the platform of the blog to pay the rights holders a fee for having linked to the copyrighted material (with fatuous exemptions).

This is state-sponsored parasitism.  This is crony, corporate communism at its most disgusting.  (Technically, it is a fascist state, but we can't say fascist state because loads of ignorant, issue-illiterate, snowflake Lefists think fascism is something to do with a man adorning a pencil moustache sending people to gas chambers).

The Copyright Directive is law that remain voters ultimately want to see happen, hence why they voted to remain.  They voted for it.  Bear that in mind, if the UK ever undergoes a truth and reconciliation process.

Man-made global warming

I read Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth (no link, it'll be taxed).  I'll admit, I was ready to be taken in by it, and I was.  For years, I believed that I understood how man-made "carbon emissions" cooked the planet.

But when I started to question the honesty of the mainstream media, I challenged just about everything I thought I know about politics, philosophy and economics.  And the sinister dogma of man-made global warming was one of the major causalities.

It's amazing what a little bit of learning can achieve.


  • We now know that the "97% of scientist agree" is a fiction invented by a cartoonist.
  • We continue to know that we have no means of measuring: i) what percentage of climate change is caused by mankind; and ii) what percentage of climate change is caused by natural forces.
  • We now know that peaks of carbon dioxide levels in the relevant layers of the atmosphere follow peaks of temperature, not the other way around.
  • We continue to know that there is a very strong co-relation between sunspot activity and the "average" measurements of temperature around the world.
  • We know that carbon dioxide is the 5th least-significant greenhouse gas (the most significant is water vapour).
  • We also know that humankind's carbon dioxide emissions are very, very small compared to natural sources of carbon dioxide emissions (e.g. volcanoes) (yet we still can't link human activity to a percentage of climate change).
  • We know that only one of the many models for climate change are consistently wrong, with no attempt to make the models relevant (the one that works is a Russian model, but, apparently, anything Russian is fake news, so we're not allowed to believe it).
  • We know that just about any study promoting or advocating or trying to measure the human contribution/cause of climate change typically rests upon very selective/cherry-picked interpretations of comparable "baseline" data.
  • We know that any graph looking like a hockey stick is normally a falsehood, because statistically it cannot stack up.  Yet, the infamous hockey stick graph has become a touchstone for the alarmists because it says what they desperately want to believe.  But the graph's co-author, Michael Mann, was held in contempt of a Canadian court in 2017 when the court demanded Mann's workings to prove that the graph was not fraudulent, but Mann refused.  What has Mann got to hide?  It demonstrates just how without credibility, honesty and integrity the alarmist crusade is.

And this is just the stuff I can grasp.

Yet there's more.  The next thing for me to get my head around is the possibility that the models used by climate alarmists are so demonstrably fake that only an utter moron would believe anything a climate alarmist would say.  Publicised by The Red Elephant's Vincent James and Newsblaze, astrophysicist Joseph Postma (who made it onto the Denier's List, which thus enhances Postma's credibility in my eyes), Postma's idea is that alarmists' models assume a flat earth.  Yes, a flat earth!  They also assume that the heat from the sun hits the surface of the flat earth at the temperate of -18°C (yet, negative eighteen degrees Celsius, below the freezing point of water).  Somehow, this "heat" "radiates" into the single-layered atmosphere and gets trapped by something causing a greenhouse effect which eventually boils the planet and kills everything.

Interestingly, this means that every time a climate alarmist whitters on about the "ozone layer", they are talking off-script from the models that they use to prop up their superstitious propaganda.

What is the obsession with carbon dioxide anyway?  The answer turns out to be very simple: carbon dioxide emissions happen when humans generate energy and when humans consume energy.  With the right "regulation" in place, it thus becomes possible to tax both sides of the energy transaction.  And if it's possible to tax it, then it's also possible to charge a price for each event.  All that is required is the same raft of "financialisation" law to be imported into the energy sector.

And this is what it's really all about.  To control the carbon dioxide "supply" is to control the entire energy sector.  And as energy is as fundamental to human life as you can get, the control of the energy sector is control of everything.  It is perfect corporate communism.

And, of course, the European Union is fully on board with the mission to save the planet from carbon dioxide.

The vast legions of journalists, Leftist, pseudo-scientists, taxpayer-funded non-governmental organisations/lobby groups who support the underlying Malthusian theories of man-made global warming are just really useful idiots to help to prop up a narrative that the idiots themselves don't understand.  By the time they'll figure it out, it'll be too late: they'll be stitched up, like the rest of us.  An Inconvenient Lie, indeed.

A shift in empire: from America, but to where?

The demise of the British empire in favour of the American empire took a long time coming, but it was ultimately the Suez Crisis of 1956 which was the final nail in the coffin for any chance of Britain reprising its imperial ambitions.

A similar story appears to be panning out for America.  The runes are reading in a similar way.  America, under President Trump, is probably less social-justice-warriory than at any time in the past 30 years, yet the neo-liberal and neo-conservative agenda continue to push out bile which undermines America's domestic agenda and, when involved in foreign wars, undermines America's international agenda.

The Cuban Missile Crisis, Vietnam, the Iraq Wars, Afghanistan, responses to Russia's re-annexation of the Crimea (contrary to American demands that Crimea be part of the sovereign state of Ukraine), America's ruthless fleecing of Russia in President Yeltsin's era, America's bombastic economic sanctions against Russia in President Putin's era, America's dogmatic economic sanctions against anybody who trades with Iran, America's destabilising presence in the Middle East, the Foreign Account and Tax Compliance Act (which led to some American ex-pats to renounce their citizenship just to get hold of a bank account in their host country, just to feed the kids) and, just to cap it all, America's forceful fake choice to Europe regarding NATO, "America or Russia: choose now."  Coming up soon: a fake-flag "war" in Venezuela.

America and Europe have both allowed the rule of law to become the law of rules.  This is perversion of what should exist to support a democratic state, but it is a necessary step for the increasing control freakery of the Leftist, globalist super-state (of which the European Union is the first major prototype).  Yet, if the European Union moves away from the United States of America, then it's likely that the whole house of cards collapses (not least because the banksters who rig the system will spot an opportunity to fleece the underlying taxpayers and private savers to the advantage of the banksters, literally taking any potential gains of control freakery from under the noses of the globalist Left).

And yet, America defies its own the rule of law at will.  It now smells very likely that the "private server" run by Hilary Clinton was necessary to protect the sources of funding for the Clinton Foundation from investigation under money laundering rules.  The benefit of hindsight makes it quite clear that the second Iraq war (George W Bush, Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney) was most likely a marketing campaign for the arms industry (and who cares about the consequences?).

Some argue that the Chinese empire is the next one to watch.  Perhaps.  Although China has many strategic interests around the world, so strategic that it would embarrass the feckless idiots of the Western ruling classes, The President of the People's Republic of China was converted in 2018 to a job-for-life.  This is the classic measure of the imperialist dream.  The incumbent is President Xi Jinping; it is too early to say what his longer-term plan might be, but we know from Chinese history that crap policy choices are equally likely in China than anywhere in the Western world.

Mao Tse Tung starved a chunk of his own population to death based on the false belief that sparrows ate grain.  He ordered peasants to rattle cans in fields all day, killing sparrows.  Without sparrow to eat insects, insects ate the grain unimpeded.  China starved.  It's a classic example of why centrally planned economies never work.  Jinping must know this, and yet there is no clear evidence of how he is going to approach the debt bubble that smothers his country's embryonic middle classes.  Jinping's only effective "solution" is the usual shortcut: to allow the Western bankster mentality to take over, wipe out the middle classes, revert the whole population to peasantry and penury, under usury, a form of neo-feudalism (or, perhaps in China, "back to normal", "恢復正常", translated via Google Translate).

China clearly has military ambitions and is ready to test America's military resolve.  China has deployed its military to play stupid little games in the South China Sea, illegitimately claiming rights over the Spratly Islands (amongst others).  America is also there, playing its role in the same stupid game.  And China, like Russia and Iran (allegedly), support the incumbent socialist President of Venezuela, standing opposite the view of America.  Moreover, there look to be a number of parallels between China's policy deployments today and those of Japan in the 1930s.

I'm not convinced yet that China is going to be the next empire.  As at today, the next empire feels likely to be an unstable coalition of Russia, China and India against a fragmented, bankrupted disarray of Europe and America.  The root cause of the instability of the coalition empire shall be who carves up the spoils of Old Europe and the Disunited States of America.  Through this transition, I suspect that both old and new empires are going to have to deal with the irritant of Islamic Fundamentalism, although all parties need Islamic Fundamentalism to ensure the Middle East remains paralysed by its own factions (and thus keep the oil flowing!).

The next few decades are going to be extremely messy.

Brexit

And somewhere in this quagmire of international tectonic political plate-shifting, there is this Brexit thing.  Oh yeah, that's what this blog was supposed to be about, wasn't it?

All of a sudden, Brexit seems quite trivially academic.

Breaking out of the European Union offers the UK a great deal of freedom... supposedly.  In all probability, the maximum freedom in the foreseeable future is to cherrypick bits of globalist stupidity that i) the European Union has been implementing for years; and ii) still benefit the UK.

Yet, hope is vision on the horizon.  Although globalisation shall likely continue - and for good reasons - globalism is looking very ill.  Globalism is the Leftist campaign for One World Socialist Government.  Many of us ordinary plebs are waking up.  We are "woke", but not in the way that Leftists want us to be.

In another whisper of hope, America has appointed David Malpass as the President of the World Bank, which some pundits reckon is potentially a game-changer (opinion: American Thinker, note the contrast between expectations on Malpass and the issue-illiterate social justice eco warrior mentality of Obama's choice Kim.  Note also some choice quotes attributed to Malpass, offered by ZeroHedge).

A Brexited Britain will need to be patient while the rest of the world's democracies catch up, and make their own opportunities to destroy their globalist overlords, the self-serving monopolists and banksters who seek to impose neo-feudalism.  In reality, a Brexited Britain will need to be equally patient with its own idiotic ruling classes.

Since the referendum, us ordinary plebs have little to do but watch the stupidity of the British Prime Minster Theresa May see Brexit as "damage limitation" exercise that results in a Withdrawal Agreement far more abominable than membership of the EU.  We've watched the stupidity of a self-serving Parliament, which desperately wants to turn the clock back to the pre-referendum days, so it can continue to juice the gravy train to which it had become overly accustomed.  We've learnt not to watch the deceitful mainstream media that has so disserved its customers/readers in all policy areas for decades.

The overwhelming and fundamental change that British society needs is one that most British are genetically pre-disposed to ignore.  The mindset of the typical British voter is all about solving challenges with the most breathtaking of issue-illiterate complacency, denial and arrogance, in particular a pathetic faith in the "reasonableness" of others, with not a jot of political literacy to accept just how sick in the head Leftist control freaks really are.  In this mindset, change is incremental, honest, reasonable and never, ever radical.  Unsurprisingly, this is the mindset that allowed the ruling elite (howsoever branded) to cause the UK to drift into the evil grip of the European Economic Community, wilfully deceiving the population along the way.  Membership of the EEC was very radical, and the ruling elite got away with it by lying to a population who was happy to be lied to, because the lies sounded comforting.

While the world is undergoing further significant, if incremental, changes in the next 50 years, the British population is probably best served by riding the waves of these changes.  To do this, we require issue-literate leaders and implementors to keep a hawk's eye on developments, being ready to deploy the right policies to protect our interests.  None of our current ruling elite meets this requirement.  Yet, to change the ruling elite requires overturning the mindset of the typical British voter.  It means the typical British voter getting off his lazy, fat arse, and getting involved, even to the extent of fighting hard against deeply entrenched, bullying, threatening, potentially violent vested interests who's much prefer to impose neo-feudalism, thank you very much.  The fight of the French state against its own gilets jaunes is instructive.

Brexit on its own does not solve this, but it is a necessary step to building the solution.  Brexit is the last throw of the dice for freedom of the British people from the tyranny of Britain's own state and other supra-national "regulators" that conspire to move us towards the socialist, globalist, neo-feudalism beloved of the military industrial complex.  It sounds all very conspiratorial and, sure, there are some forces which attempt to fight the tyranny.  But it will all amount to nowt if ordinary plebs continue to sit on their arses and watch mainstream telly, pretending that the fight above their heads about who owns the plebs' resources doesn't really matter to the plebs.

After all, the 48% who voted remain voted in favour the Copyright Directive and the Single European Army, whether they like to admit it or not.  How many of these 48% will come to their senses is an open question.  But, just as they voted in favour of their democratic, political and economic suicide within a neo-feudalist European Union, they shall likely continue to vote for the same moronic objectives whenever the opportunity arises.  And all of them will wrongly reckon that it'll do them good and give them lots of future opportunities.  Tell that to the long-term unemployed youth of France, preferably because the French police beat the long-term unemployed youth to death for wearing a gilet jaune.



Friday, 28 December 2018

Queen and the Bish talk about "tribalism". The BBC's response is... erm... tribal.

Christmas Day was originally an ancient pagan festival of generally jovial equinox-related debauchery.  In later years, a bunch of extreme cultists - sometimes known as "Christian State", also known as the "Holy Roman Empire", apparently - culturally misappropriated said pagan festival by means of a Germanic Victorian ritual involving 12 sordid days of turkey sandwiches.  In more recent years, even the culturally misappropriated ex-pagan party got culturally re-misappropriated.  Corporates hijacked the ex-pagan, ex-Christian party converting it to a new, post-modern ritual of trashy consumerism - where success is measured by the number of transactions typed up into a spreadsheet - shallow celebrity, family rows over which social media channel to watch at the Christmas lunch table, and a politicised vulture-fest by the legacy mainstream media (largely feeding on itself).

The culturally misappropriated Christmas Day is a perfect opportunity for the Queen (the head of the British State and Church of England) and the Archbishop of Canterbury (the permanent secretary of the Church of England, with more political power than the Queen) to say something on the telly.  Although most of us ordinary taxpaying plebs were too busy having a blazing family row about what to return to Amazon.co.uk to pay attention to either of them, some people would have watched them in their original broadcast.  Most of us would have caught the carefully re-spun headlines sensationalised by the legacy mainstream media.

Where is there a media performance to be re-spun, the legacy mainstream media will be there to re-spin it to meet the legacy mainstream media's own cynical agenda.  And, predictably, first past the line is the BBC.

From each media performance, two particular opportunities for some cynical re-spinning were:

"Perhaps part of that wisdom is to recognise some of life's baffling paradoxes, such as the way human beings have a huge propensity for good, and yet a capacity for evil. Even the power of faith, which frequently inspires great generosity and self-sacrifice, can fall victim to tribalism." (Queen)

"God’s language of love is exclusive. It requires us to forget other languages of hatred, tribalism, rivalry, political advantage and of materialism, pride, greed, and so many more." (Archbishop of Canterbury)
What each speaker intended is irrelevant.  The BBC took both media events, re-spinning each event to serve the BBC's long-preordained position of their beloved anti-Brexit agenda.

The BBC linked Queenie immediately to Brexit, cynically stating, "The monarch, 92, highlighted the importance of people with opposing views treating each other with respect.  It comes as Parliament remains divided over the PM's Brexit deal, as the UK prepares to leave the EU in March."  No reader/listener needed this spelling out to them, but in view of all other more important difficulties in the world, it is an extraordinarily tribal choice by the BBC editors to link Brexit unnecessarily to the Queen.  Thus the BBC indulged in tribalism on the back off a speech that decried tribalism.

The BBC needed a bit of help from a Churchie stooge to link the Bish to Brexit.  The most confident unassisted spin of the BBC was the scribble, "While he [the Bish] did not specifically mention the UK's political future, he stressed the importance of the language of love replacing the language of conflict."  The BBC needed some helpful soundbitey gibberish techno-babble from another Bish, this one being the Bishop of London, Bishop Mullally. "Debates in politics around the EU referendum have created division," wrote the BBC as a terribly convenient quotation from the Bishop of London. "My belief is that diversity creates strong community; division weakens it."

From the two Bishs' words, the BBC thus promoted two narratives of its ideological agenda.  For the first narrative, the BBC allegedly managed to find somebody whose world view is allegedly soooo culturally Marxist that the speaker implied a series of re-bundled artificial distinctions between "diversity", "division" and "difference", loading the terms with unnecessary emotionalism.  Unbundle the artificial distinctions and the quotation is just plain nonsense (unless one takes the quotation as an advocacy of "divide-and-rule", a traditional position of the Church).  Allegedly.  Either the BBC correctly reported Bish Mullally's words, or made them up for her ('ere ya go, luv, read this aaaat").  Allegedly.  Howsoever justified, the BBC indulged in tribalism on the back off a speech that decried tribalism, and even "found" another Bish to prop up the tribalism of the BBC's editorial policy.

For the second narrative, the BBC achieved a position of near-perfect cognitive dissonance.  Since before 2016, the BBC has always promoted the Remainiac cause, taking every opportunity to denigrate the fight for freedom from technocracy that the vote to leave ultimately represented, being careful to ensure that the denigration was done in the most "impartial" way possible, whilst blocking out any rational voices and non-metropolitan voices within the scope of the issue.  Again, the BBC indulged in tribalism on the back off a speech that decried tribalism.

It looks like "taking back control" is going to be a much harder and longer job than any leave voter might have wanted to believe as at 23 June 2016.  Taxation without representation continues apace.  In the world of the legacy mainstream media, led by the taxpayer-funded BBC, tribalism lives on.

We can be confident that the BBC will continue to present all issues in a tribal, bi-polar way, to meet the BBC's own tribal requirements, for the foreseeable future.


Thursday, 27 December 2018

Open Skies agreements in place between UK and US? Is this even legal?

Mendacity continues.

If Sky is any credible yardstick, then in July 2017, some American airlines muttered something about the stark reality of the UK’s crashing out of the European Common Aviation Airspace (“ECAA”), and in November 2018, the UK & the US governments “agreed” an open skies deal between them.  Reuters has also reported the story, adding that the UK is engaged in serial bi-lateralism with other countries for air access.

It seems that Sky might be onto something.  Perhaps Sky fed from Reuters, or perhaps Sky read something from UK Gov itself, but on 28Nov2018, the UK government itself bragged about the US-UK Open Sky agreement.  Trade press (one example) jumped on the story on the same day (so no choreography there, then).

Has anybody told the UK government that, if it has indeed concluded trade deals with third countries before 29Mar2019, then UKGov has broken EU law?

TOFU Article 218 makes it very clear that only the EU may conclude commercial deals; the UK would have needed permission in an agreed Withdrawal Agreement to have opened negotiations for air access with third countries while the UK were still a member of the EU (until 29Mar2019).  The UK’s transgression in this respect will certainly have registered with European Commission and Remainiacs (such as Blair, Clegg, the litigious Miller et al): when (if?) Brexit comes closer to happening, we can be confident that Project Sabotage will be wheeled out once again to derail the UK’s new deals with third countries.

Could UKGov be so stupid?  Well, having invoked Article 50 without a viable plan to transition from EU member to EU non-member, the short answer is probably “yes”.  Or, as we can see with the currently proposed Withdrawal Agreement - and the cynical political engineering by the likes of May and Robbins to get to the proposed Withdrawal Agreement, including the scurrying back to Brussels to keep on negotiating even after the European Council approved the deal (in 30 minutes!) and closed the Commission’s mandate to negotiate - the longer answer is probably “no”, on the basis that an outcome must be seen to be impossible to justify an anti-democratic U-turn.  Hence why Project Sabotage is so important to Remainiacs.  It’s why Remainaics needed to exterminate EFTA/EEA as a means to implementing a sensible Brexit.  And, measured by their actions, May & Robbins are functionally Remainaics.


Meanwhile, on 19Dec2018, the European Commission published COM(2018) 890, “Preparing for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union on 30
March 2019: Implementing the Commission’s Contingency Action Plan.”  This correctly reminds its readers - and anybody else, for that matter - that a “no-deal” Brexit would have the UK leave the EU along with all subsidiary agreements, including the ECAA.  As a result, airlines based in the UK would be instantly denied access to ECAA airspace and landing rights 11pm UK time 29Mar2019.  COM(2018) 890 announced temporary, transitional rules, to give EU operators enough time to close their operations with the UK tidily (pages 6-7).  The two transitional rules are:
     To the extent also granted by the UK to EU operators, to grant UK operators over-fly access and to grant UK operators emergency (non-scheduled) landings in EU airports for a maximum period of 12 months.
     To propose a regulation that assigns validity to UK holders of ECAA certifications for up to nine months to allow for some time to avoid a catch-22 situation regarding air safety regulation.

This announcement, along with much else in COM(2018) 890, is a list of the key things for the EU and the EU27 to do to withdraw tidily their affairs from the UK.  The sole reason for any of the transitional periods set out in COM(2018) 890 appears to be towards implementing the EU external border around the UK in manageable chunks.  From the perspective of the European Commission, this is the job that needs to be done.  From the perspective of the EU27, there are likely to be some unpleasant surprises following the implementation of COM(2018) 890.  Nothing insurmountable, for sure, but subtleties which will lay the groundwork for the EU to extend further into the sovereignty of the EU27, beyond that which any of the EU27 would have agreed with the UK as one of the EU28.

More short-term, without impact on sovereignty, trade flow will be the nastiest surprise, especially for those EU27 who need to import from the UK in the short-term.  The four areas to watch are air transport, road haulage, financial services and import/export of goods.  COM(2018) 890 is particularly oblique on page 7, where it says, “If the Withdrawal Agreement is not ratified, all relevant EU legislation on imported goods and exported goods will apply as of the withdrawal date.”  This is an under-statement.  The EU27, not the EU, are responsible for Border Inspection Posts, so if the EU27 want to import - or need to import - from the UK, then they are already too late to build any useful mitigating measures to keep trade flowing.  This includes the EU’s external border in Eire with Northern Ireland.

COM(2018) 890 is unlikely to be the European Commission’s final word on the subject.  But it is nevertheless an interesting window into the mind of the EU.

Sunday, 23 December 2018

Common Purpose: the puppetmaster?

At first glance, others' analyses of Common Purpose smell right (see bibliography, below).

It is certainly feasible that one organisation can have pervasive, extra-system influence throughout an entire system of government, including its agencies.  Groupthink has no barriers.

The real concern is whether Agenda 21, now presumably replaced by Agenda 2030, is aiming to bring about long-term 0% growth, 0% interest rates and zero carbon emissions in an issue-illiterate way to bring about "sustainable development".  In the twisted mind of a Leftist, all economic activity is zero-sum, so 0% growth means no change, therefore is more likely to be "sustainable" than otherwise.

In others' analysis of Common Purpose, I find that the analyses describes what I observe.  So far, I cannot fault the analyses.  Common Purpose is an agent to bring about Agenda 2030.

As a useful by-product for the Leftists, the same 0% interest rates enables misappropriation of wealth from modestly wealthy savers (the poor-ish) via the wealthy reckless borrowers (the über-rich) to the banks (the ultimate debtor).  Leftists reckon that this is equality-of-outcome; normal people see it as feudalism and serfdom.

A better by-product for the Leftists is that the agenda's policy choices also lead to taxation without representation, equality-of-outcome, the abolition of meritocracy and, consequently, the de facto redundancy of democracy.  The end-games resemble a heap of Daleks ruling over masses of "upgraded" Cybermen.

All of a sudden, the context of the European Union looks all too clear.

But is this fair criticism?

Common Purpose's own publications

Website

Frustratingly, Common Purpose's website doesn't seem bothered about defending itself, or even selling itself!  Does it reckons that its "graduates" are so deeply embedded into governmental systems that it's work is substantially done?

CP's own website contains little of any substance that a normal charity would publicise to prove its existence, or to drum up membership/sponsorship.  CP sounds coy about its alumni, its impact, its achievements.  Its message is a seemingly all over the place, a mishmash of subtle socialisation, some incomplete tangible achievements, general nonsense, a bit of psycho-babble, comprehensive missing-the-point and inadvertent admission of wrongthink.

Impact report 2017

CP's impact report of 2017 also fails to hit the spot.  Where one would expect a series of concrete, measurable deliverables being disclosed (i.e. "We did X which made Y happen which benefited Z people by enabling them to do W at time T"), instead we get:

  • "The programme helped me reflect on how I could create better ecosystems for promoting innovation."
  • "I think I’m so open minded, I try to be politically correct."
  • "Common Purpose is the organization par excellence, with the mission to put diversity at the heart of the leadership debate. What it does in practice—and in terms of walking the talk—is bring people from different communities, different sectors, different generations together to address the challenge and opportunity of leadership."

The third example above is classic Leftist gibberish used as a tool of socialisation.  It hits the right sound-bites, gives the reader the impression that the reader understands what they've read, but, actually, it says nothing useful to the reader.  The reader will only agree with the comment if the reader is pre-disposed emotionally to want to believe it.  Completely airbrushed out of that warm, fuzzy feeling is the measurable damage that Leftist policies - issue-illiteracy, wrongthink, equality-of-outcome-at-all-costs, Malthusian philosophy, diversity over meritocracy, identity politics over tangible achievements - aim to wreak over communities, sectors and generations.

One testimonial is worth quoting at length, because, at first sniff, sounds very close to being convincing.  Charles Asiedu, MD of Ecobank, said:
"I engaged the government agency responsible for the food procurement and suggested a collaborative approach involving the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank, the agency and Ecobank to resolve the food crisis. We brought the partners together and, after sharing what role we each thought we could play, together we designed a solution. Now we are mobilizing $50 million to support the importation of maize to help feed eight million Malawians. Prior to CSCLeaders I wouldn’t have thought more broadly about bringing in other partners to handle the crisis."
This simply doesn't make sense!  How did simply talking to other people who arguably should have already cared make a difference?  What was in the business interest of the other partners to engage in such solution, merely on the say-so of one bod from Ecobank?  The more one thinks about this example, the more a smell of something odious arises.

CP's impact report of 2017 also claims to have worked with 1,182 organisations, listing the most prestigious and well-known (PDF page 12).  It is nowadays quite common for private sector organisations to brag about their social activities ("corporate social responsibility", which is another tool of the same agenda to which CP is aligned).  There are quite a lot of banks on the list.  And these are the same banks who are so signed up to Leftist social justice that they tend to accumulate wealth at their customers' expense (customers' deposits taken, 0% interest returned to depositors, cash used to hedge purchase of assets anyway, erosion of cash value places net burden on depositor) and then expect their own corruption to be bailed-out at the taxpayers' expense.  The brazen display of such cognitive dissonance is remarkable: here, the banks are practising stealthy confiscation of wealth by rigging the monetary system, yet publicly supporting a charity that espouses equality-of-outcome.  The only way in which this couldn't be cognitive dissonance is that the equality-of-outcome is "all equally poor and enslaved to a capitalist master".

Without irony, CP even names Deutsche Bank as one of the prestigious organisations with which CP has worked!  Is this the very same Deutsche Bank which, in 2016, the German government was planning to bail-out but which the same government realised it probably couldn't afford to do so?  Oops.  Puts the European Union's state-aid rules to the test, doesn't it?  By contrast, what's really going on - stripping out politico crap - is explained by the MoneyGPS (12 minute video, source Bloomberg).  It's difficult to say whether Deutsche Bank is a good advert for CP.  On the one hand, DB represents the very model of financial impropriety, to the extent that a government looks set to change its own rules to fudge the issue.  So much for the rule of law.  Not a good advert for CP.  On the other hand, DB represents such an elegant way to defraud the people - laundering the peoples' gains away from the via the official banking system - that it is perhaps the best advert for aggressive, goalpost-moving socialism that could ever have been invented.  Marx and Trotski would have been so proud.  So perhaps a brilliant advert for CP, after all.

Annual report 2017 - Common Purpose (disclosed by own website)

CP UK discloses - as it is lawfully obliged to do - its corporate status.  It also discloses its charitable status.  Its UK company number is 3556983.  Its UK charity number is 1023384.  It also has a Scottish charitable registration, SCO41166.

A search for "Common Purpose" at Companies House lists six entities with "common purpose" in the name, sharing the same registered address, Monmouth House, 38-40 Artillery Lane, London, E1 7LS. (As at 23Dec2018).

A search for "Common Purpose" at the UK Charity Commission lists three registrants with "common purpose" in the name that look related to CP.

According to the annual report of 2017, CP UK's turnover was £1.7m (2016: £1.9m), of which £1.2m was course fees (2016: £1.1m).

I'm not convinced that 2016's numbers actually cast.  1900673+1709358=3610031, but 1747658-1785260=-37602.  The use of brackets seems to be negligently inconsistent.  2016's annual report didn't appear on CP's website as at 23Dec2018.

The balance sheet as at 31Jul2017 was in net deficit, £100,624 (2016: £63,022).  In spite of this, the trustees believed that the entity was a going-concern.  One would the trustees to say where the money comes from, but the trustees don't reveal this.  Instead, the entity discloses its ultimate controlling entity as Common Purpose Charitable Trust ("CPCT").

Annual report 2017 - Common Purpose Charitable Trust

CPCT is a company limited by guarantee.  Its company number is 02832875 and it uses the same charity number as above, 1023384.

CPCT discloses no list of members, as befits a private company.  In its Persons of Significant Control 03Jul2016 in an annual confirmation statement of 08Jul2016, "The company knows or has reasonable cause to believe that there is no registrable person or registrable relevant legal entity in relation to the company."  However, the PSC legislation caught quite a few people out.  Julia Middleton was the Person of Significant Control with effect from the regulation's effective date of 06Apr2016 to 03Jul2016.  Middleton was a registered officer of the CPCT, no longer is, yet CP holds her out as the "founder and chief executive".  Normally, a chief executive would be a currently registered director of a company.  Middleton isn't a director of CP (company 3556983) either, but she is listed as one of three people of significant control for CP (company 3556983).  As at 23Dec2018, Middleton has a total of nine past and present directorships.

CPCT's turnover was £5m in the year ending 31Jul2017 (2016: £4.7m).  In both years, course fees represented the largest plurality of income, with "income from non-UK bodies" comprising the second largest plurality of income.  2017 saw a significant increase in "other trading activities" relative to 2016.

There is no segmental analysis by geography or by function to understand the "income from non-UK bodies".  This doesn't smell right, especially for a Leftist organisation whose soulmates include the Tax Justice Network.  Here is a report from the TJN lamenting the lack of global corporate transparency, co-funded by the European Union.  The difference between what the Leftist TJN preaches and what the Leftist CPCT practices is quite stark.

Again, I'm not convinced that 2016's numbers cast: 4740733-5321632=-580899, not -581971 as reported.

CPCT's balance sheet as at 31Jul2017 was £0.8m (2016: £0.5m).  Operating cash flow was £-0.8m (2016: £0.13m).  CPCT employed 68 people in both years.  The simple average salary is £33,793pa, but the disclosure of 9 highly-paid individuals means that the lowest salaries are considerably lower than the simple average salary.  Social justice in action?

CPCT discloses no ultimate controlling entity.

Charity Commission disclosures

The registered aim of CPCT is:
"CPCT oversees the activities of CPUK, CP International,CP Customised Ltd, CP Global Customised and CP Asia Pacific. It safeguards brands, intellectual property, web domain names and trademarks, holds the overall strategic plan and supports the alumni. Our educational courses give people the inspiration, skills and connections to become better leaders at work and in society."
This sounds much more corporate than a "real" charity that us ordinary plebs would recognise as a charity.  The last sentence is cynically vague.

Conclusion

No wonder democracy feels frayed and exploited.

There is a strong whiff of the Leftists' "old boys network" about Common Purpose, an ideal vehicle whereby the ideology of Cultural Marxism can be spread, to perpetuate issue-illiterate policy choices at government level, to lock in corporate corruption, to lock out democratic control, to achieve the perfect state of taxation-without-representation, the global Soviet.  Leadership and training for the parasites of any political system.

Common Purpose makes no attempt to debunk allegations of its ulterior motives.  On the contrary, Common Purpose continues to evangelise diversity over meritocracy, socialisation over rationality, emotionalism over empiricism.  The only possible consequence of this evangelism is the promotion issue-illiterate policies and related groupthink.

Given Leftists' dire hatred of Vladimir Putin, the nature of Common Purpose is enough to make a normal, ordinary pleb wonder whether Putin has a valid point after all.


Bibliography:

https://commonpurpose.org/
https://wikileaks.org/wiki/Common_purpose
https://www.bruceonpolitics.com/2017/07/14/secret-society-runs-great-britain/
https://www.ukcolumn.org/article/were-all-together
https://www.cpexposed.com/
http://www.stopcp.com/
https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/post2015/transformingourworld
https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/outcomedocuments/agenda21
https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/400867/Rotherham-Council-spent-30K-training-staff-in-secretive-society
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/common_purpose_a_fraudulent_poli (see also the annotation from clothcap on 04Oct2010)

Monday, 26 November 2018

One size does not fit all: GDPR, family trees, employment law and financial services.

Everybody loves certainty.  Everybody positively adores predictability and forseeability.

So the notion that the General Data Protection Regulation (EU 2016/679) ("GDPR") has swept some degree of certainty into data transactions must be a good thing, right?

Right.

But what if the certainty is fake?  Or does not resemble reality closely enough to be a useful instruction?

The economic objective of GDPR: an overhead barrier to entry


To those who have already read GDPR, and/or implemented it in the private sector workplace, one already knows the real economic interest that the EU had to introduce GDPR.

Aside from playing trade politics with America, GDPR de facto requires all Data Controllers to compile contemporaneous documentation to prove the Data Controller's innocence in advance of any claims/investigations arising.  Data Protection By Design, remember (the Precautionary Principle for data)?

And, of course, documentation is inherently a manual task, therefore expensive, and must be funded by means of overhead resources.  Which means that GDPR has become traditional European form of protectionism: a barrier to entry via an obligation to have bloated overheads.

How effective is GDPR?


As to the actual effectiveness of GDPR on protecting personal data of EU member nation citizens, the jury is still out.

The European Commission is not currently satisfied with the American approach to data protection.  One lawyers' public report of 02Sep2018 pointed to a growing unease in Europe about the enforceable adequacy of the EU-US Privacy Shield  (EU, wiki).

In part, this is presumably down to the sheer impossibility of getting Americans to understand anything that doesn't fit into their own pre-conceived, bureau-legalistic outlook on the world (as the IAPP lamented on 20Jan2018, "Explaining GDPR to an American"; my response: best of luck, lots of patience... and breeeeathe...).

How workable is GDPR?  Alien law in foreign courts?


The challenge of explaining Napoleonic code mentality to a common-law American lawyer is one of the major challenges that European jurisprudence faces in the wider, non-European world.

The tick-box absolutism of EU rules, directives and regulations has been a challenge for the British (and will remain so after the fake-Brexit of 29Mar2019 asunder the Withdrawal Agreement of Nov2018).

So how the same tick-box absolutism will square up to, say, Chinese jurisprudence is going to be more than merely entertaining.

Absolutism = absurd outcomes


The core problem for the Europeans is that the absolutism of GDPR results in absurd outcomes.  GDPR does not accommodate the Anglo-Saxon legal concept of "reasonableness", largely in part because GDPR is based upon a Germanic model of data protection, enforced by a European political system based on France's fourth republic.

The absurdity arises because the rules are designed to fit too narrow range of objective outcomes, with an even narrower range of method by which to achieve the too narrow range of objective outcomes.

The range of outcomes is narrow because of the underlying ideology, contaminated by corporatist lobbying along the way.

The net result is that GDPR serves as much as barrier to trade/entry as it does some limited protection of personal data.

Like all EU regulation, it meets some of its retail objectives, but at hidden costs to the consumer that the typical consumer might have re-considered had they the choice about whether to implement the regulation.

One such cost to the consumer - and therefore also to the value-chain of producers - is the narrow range of prescribed uses of personal data.

Consumer impact: case 1, Facebook et al


GDPR is designed primarily with discriminating against Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Apple, to ensure that they cannot re-sell personal data of EU member nation citizens without the citizen knowing.

Of course, the care that the EU has for us ordinary taxpaying plebs is as miserably low as any tin-pot civil servant within any of the EU member nations.  The real issue for the EU is to stack Facebook et al with a tonne of irrecoverable overheads that are fundamentally tied to the core of their business, to reduce their profitability, to reduce the perceived viability of operating in the EU and/or with personal data of EU member nation citizens.

Has GDPR successfully constrained Facebook's re-sale of personal data?  Facebook is, for the moment (Nov2018) seemingly evading any meaningful investigation, but others claim to find that Facebook is hiding known breaches of GDPR.  TechRepublic summarised the chronology on 25Oct2018.

Consumer impact: case 2, the consumer's employer


GDPR specifically did not address situations where data processing is inevitable, but otherwise unrelated to internet-based consumer services.

For example, take a business running in a business-to-business market, with no consumer customers.

GDPR applies to this business as much as it does to Facebook.  It's exposure to GDPR is much smaller than it would be for Facebook, i.e. Facebook is both a Data Controller and a Data Processor.  But the small business is probably only a Data Controller, who sub-contracts the payroll to a Data Processing payroll bureau.  But, like Facebook, the small business needs to prepare tonnes of documentation to prove its innocence well in advance of something bad happening.

For those in English jurisprudence, the precautionary elements of GDPR make compliance with it the same as that of health & safety risk assessments, or fire risk assessments.  In effect, GDPR requires data risk assessments, even if the risk is self-evidently zero.  Don't assume, just keep typing (even if it detracts from running your business).

Consumer impact: case 3, a family tree


For another example, take a family that seeks to centralise its family history.

The collation of family history of dead relatives is not a problem under GDPR, and can be done on paper or digitally.

The problem comes with living relatives.

The compilation of a family tree containing personal data of living relatives cannot meet a single basis of lawful processing asunder GDPR Article 6:

  • there is no documented consent mechanism within a family: a consent mechanism could be built, but, only at humongous cost.  As at Nov2018, what software available on the market does that, and how could it work if one member of the family refuses (or cannot) use the internet?  
  • there is no contract to perform: a contract between family and member could be drafted, but it would be an absurdity;
  • there is no legal obligation on the family to compile its family history;
  • there are few cases where a family history would be vital to the interests of the Data Subject, except to track medical conditions.  Ironically, this a form of Special Data Processing subject to even more restrictions asunder GDPR Article 9.
  • there are no de facto legitimate interests that the family archivist could have to record personal data of Data Subjects, especially regarding minors (children).
And yet, much of the basic data that would justify a Data Regulator prosecuting the Data Controller (family archivist) is typically available from the Register of Births, Deaths and Marriages.  Ah, but they are state agencies, aren't they, so they enjoy a different legal system to that which the state inflicts on us ordinary plebs, don't they?

The blindingly obvious absurdity arises over time.  The generation that first compiles its family tree might be the easiest if they consent unanimously.  Fine.  But that might include their children, who may be too young to grant consent.  After a few years of wilful non-compliance with GDPR, the children grow up, mate with a complete stranger and spawn.  The archivist wants to record the mate and the spawn on the family tree.  And this decision by the archivist lays a landmine for the future, waiting to be triggered.

Roll-forward one more generation, and the family archivist - by then an elderly person - is unlikely to have met the full range of grand-children that the extended family would have spawned, especially if there were more than one child in the other families married into the family.  Yet, the same archivist will have wanted to document all of them to keep the family tree complete.  Managing consent would be a slight nightmare.  All it would take is a small family tiff, an unexpected discovery that a family archivist was recording data about the wider family, and then the archivist would be slapped with a Data Subject Erasure Request from the offended distant relative.  The Request would likely be followed by a notice of investigation from the Data Regulator.  Where, would demand the regulator of the archivist, is the signed proof that the mate and spawn consented to their personal data being in your hands?  Thus the archivist steps onto his own landmine (remember that?).  Oops.  Good luck defending against that one.


The European Right to be Forgotten


Taken in combination with the Copyright Directive (a proposal as at Nov2018) and the Right to be Forgotten (Google Spain SL, Google Inc v Agencia Española de Protección de Datos, Mario Costeja González (2014), partially codified in GDPR, wiki), we stare at a European jurisprudence that demands its populace zombies-out.  Literally, to throw its brains and memories out of the window, never to be used ever again.

How absurd is this outcome?  Yet, it is an inevitable consequence of European law.  Arguably a public choice to dumb down the population.  It makes it much easier for cultural Marxists to re-write history when the history has been erased by due process of law.

Making financial services to make employment hard again

Such absurdities undermine the integrity of the woolly concepts within GDPR.

The definitions of Data Subject, Data Controller and Data Processor sort-of make commercial sense in a simple commercial environment governed by one, or two, contracts of service.  But they don't work competently in a non-contractual environment like a family tree.

More pressingly, they don't work in a commercial environment where there are multiple intermediaries required to deliver a service to the end-consumer.  This is most acutely felt in the financial services industry.

Personal accident and travel insurance: the story of the customer's employee


Take a medium-sized business whose employees travel abroad for business travel.  The company needs to arrange some sort of travel insurance for its operations, to cover its employees.  The company might approach an insurer directly, but that is often impracticable (and undesirable, for both insured and insurer!), so most companies would use an insurance broker.  The insurer is regulated as a producer of financial services.  The broker is regulated as an intermediary of financial services.  The company is the end-user, and, in this context, is defined as "retail" asunder financial services law (MIFID).

So far, so good.  But translate these agents to GDPR, and the issue arises almost instantly.

The employee is clearly the Data Subject.  The employer is the Data Controller.  The insurer is.... erm... what, exactly?  A Data Processor?  No: the insurer is not being asked to receive personal data, churn it, and return it back in a particular form.  A Data Controller?  By default, it must be, because it's handling personal data.  That means that the broker is also a Data Controller, right?  Well, maybe not, because the broker is converting personal data from the employer into a format that the insurer might understand.  Umm..... but there is no contract between broker and insurer relating to data processing.... so does that mean the broker is really a Data Controller, or a non-compliant Data Processor?

So far, so bad.  But it gets worse.  During a business trip to America, the employee stubs his toe on an airline chair.  He claims on the employer's travel insurance.  To do so, he would (nowadays) need to have installed the insurer's travel agent's app on his smartphone (let's assume it's a dedicated company-owned smartphone, to keep this absurdity as simple as possible) and claim from there.  But how does the insurer's travel agent identify the employee as being an employee of the insured company?  Ah.  Well, ultimately, the employer is the Data Controller responsible, and the employee's details would have originated from the employer (most likely, the employee probably registered his smartphone app with the travel agent's claim service on instruction from his employer).  But however the personal data got passed to the travel agent, it's impossible to characterise the relevant agencies in the service chain cleanly between Controllers or Processors, or Joint Processors.  Or a hybrid.  Which GDPR doesn't define!

And it gets worse still.  Having stubbed his toe, the following day, the poor mush suffers a stroke while in America.  The American emergency services rush his wallet to hospital, desperate to find a travel insurance card to prove that the patient can afford to pay for his treatment.  But this is a European insurer: it's paperless (prior to the business trip, the employer told the employee to protect his personal data, so don't print anything out that comprises the safety of your personal data).  The only evidence of insurance is on the employee's smartphone.  Only the employee knows the 4-digit PIN to unlock the smartphone.  But the employee is unconscious.  All the hospital knows is the employee's name and nationality, because - thankfully - his passport is still a physical document.  But the delay caused by finding a way to get paid was a fatal choice by the hospital for the employee, and the employee dies later that day.  The issue is now to repatriate his body to his home country, with only his passport as a form of identity.  The American hospital now needs to breach just about every rule in GDPR to find out who the guy was, where he came from, who employed him, who insured him, who his next of kin is, where the next of kin lives, to where the body needs repatriating... And all GDPR can do is fudge it: GDPR apparently doesn't apply to dead people.  So that's alright then.

Other financial intermediaries


Insurance is the most likely area where the abnormal European mentality of "one size fits all" within GDPR causes more problems than it solves, with a wide range of absurdities waiting in the wings for future court cases to determine.  Travel insurance covering travel to non-EEA states without "adequacy assessments" by the European Commission are just the tip of this particular iceberg.

Beyond insurance, credit reference agencies, money-laundering agencies, credit/liquidity agencies (including credit unions), investment manufacturers ("PRIIPS"), pension providers, annuity providers and identity agencies (in states where the state provides no identity confirmation as a service, normally in common-law legal systems) are all processes which require data processing necessarily without the consent of the Data Subject, but whose operations are prescribed by law only as objectives, not methods (methods would be implied by case law, tort of negligence, i.e. "Would a reasonable credit reference agency think such a shoddy job was acceptable?").

In the instances listed above, the certainty imbued by GDPR's "reasonable" concepts is a false and fake certainty.  The real world does not comply with the childlike innocence of GDPR's noddyesque concepts.

The issue for financial services is so cloudy that a lawyer wrote up a pre-sales script for impacted parties to consider.

Impacts on mergers, acquisitions and capital markets?

A fundamental tenet of capitalism is that under-performing companies are bought up by aggressive buyers, turn the company around (or break its weak management up), and re-sell it.

In such deals, the names and positions of senior management are shared between buyer and seller, typically with such secrecy so as not to pervert the management decisions of the managers under discussion.

Necessarily, the sharing of the names - personal data - happens without the Data Subject's express consent.  It has no bearing to either the vital interests of the Data Subject, or the legitimate interests of the Data Subjects.

So, by virtue of normal operations, a merger/acquisition deal invariably - and unavoidably - breaches GDPR.

What would be the fix?  Under GDPR, the seller would need to obtain explicit consent from its employees whose names are to be shared with the buyer.  Were this to happen - especially for listed companies - the risk of insider trading would magnify considerably.  The confidentiality of the deal would be blown, and, consequently - especially for German capitalists - the oh-so-precious stability of equity markets would be in tatters.  Worse, if the management holds so much of the share capital, the deal would require a mechanism so far not yet designed to enable the transaction to happen at all.

There is no provision within GDPR for such circumstances, and no means of complying with both GDPR and current merger/acquisition customs.  GDPR thus appears arbitrary, wholly disconnected from the real world to which it supposedly relates.

This means that GDPR wilfully did not consider these circumstances during its design.  This much is quite obvious from a simple read of GDPR.  Or, more cynically, it could be that GDPR was designed to impede capital markets.  This much is likely when considering the mercantalist and protectionist outlooks of the top two EU member nations.

Vicarious liability under employment law

On 01Dec2017, in the case of various claimants v WM Morrisons Supermarket plc, the High Court held in favour of the claimants, resulting in Morrisons being vicariously liable for a data breach that a rogue employee wilfully committed as an act of revenge against his employer.  The Court of Appeal upheld the High Court's judgement (no online document from the court as at 25Nov2018; technical overview from a lawyer); Morrisons is said to plan a further appeal to the Supreme Court.

Irrespective of the chain of logic used by the courts to upload Morrisons as vicariously liable for the torts of the criminal offender, the point is that the courts have pinned the blame for a criminal act on the employer.  In the High Court's judgement, paras 72-73 set out the chain of complacency that the court held against Morrisons, specifically that Morrisons failed to deploy the appropriate level of snooping, spying, repeated investigations (presumably without due cause), clairvoyance and omnipotence to have assessed the risk of the employee's foreseeable criminal actions.  It was apparently Morrisons' fault not to have correctly guessed what the rogue employee was going to do.

Reasonableness - a core concept in English law - longer matters, even when considering tort of negligence in a case of this topic (judgement para 67, "The seventh principle [of data protection] does not impose a duty to take "reasonable car" as such.  Those words do not appear in the Statute.  This might suggest that the draftsman was aiming at a rather different target when he required that "appropriate" measures to be taken").

Indeed, from this judgement, we can reasonably (how ironic!) deduce that European jurisprudence is substantially more about the ticking of boxes, so if there is no box available to accommodate the messiness of real life, so be it.  The judgement even explains what real life entailed in this case (para 75, the testimony of Morrisons' officer responsible for data security): "it is impossible for any sizeable data controller completely to exclude the risk that data may be compromised, for example as a result of a criminal hack of its IT systems or the criminal misuse of data by its own employees."  The court accepted this testimony (para 80), but it appears to have no impact on Morrisons' defence.

In a common law environment, the absurdity of GDPR's implementation in the Morrison case enables the claimant to fish around for the deepest pockets for breach of their privacy asunder GDPR, but for which there is no evidence that such breach resulted in foreseeable costs to the claimants.

And yet... in para 103 is the double-irony: "The Bluecoat server [firewall] keeps a record of every website request made by the end user.  Thus, if an authorised person wishes to know what an individual employee has attempted to look at on the internet at work, it is technically possible to get Bluecoat to provide a list."  The court ended up upholding vicarious liability against Morrisons because it didn't systematically snoop for stuff that failed an unspecified sniff test.  So much for privacy!  What was GDPR for...?!

The case underlines the fake certainties embedded within GDPR's vague definitions and relationships between concepts (sort-of) defined in GDPR.  GDPR makes no attempt to be compatible with any other statute in any other legal system, so wilfully disregards reality outside the immediate environs of GDPR.

Accordingly, the case also underlines the perversion of common law by GDPR, its underlying Napoleonic nature, and similar for all law originating from the European Union. 

Conclusion


While the professions struggle with making GDPR workable in the real world, no-body seeks to make the case that GDPR is the wrong tool for the wrong job.

As the world's first data protection law, it pioneers a way to protect data.  But the way is backwards, so poorly designed and so poorly thought through that it provides a legal mechanism for the continuing censorship of the people, the propping-up of artificial barriers to entry into the marketplace, the monopolisation of consumer services, the protection of incumbent economic operators (far more effectively than protecting Data Subjects' personal data) and a march towards the silencing of opposition to cultural Marxism and political communism.  One size does indeed not fit all.

What started as a good idea by the innocents has been perverted by lobbyists and ideologues at the European level into an insidious form of state control, resulting in a minor war between state and IT sector as to whom has the right to subjugate the masses.  The IT sector has embarrassed the state, for showing how subjugation can be done bloodlessly; the state is jealous that the IT sector knows more about the state's serfs than the state does.

The lesson of GDPR - that one size does not fit all - will likely apply to any number of regulations in any number of jurisdictions, not just the European Union.  But for a such modern proto-state, it is unreasonable to expect the EU still to be using the tools of mid-20th century to progress its agenda.  That the EU chooses still to work in mid-20th century says an awful lot about the evil, longer-term objectives of the statist-globalists who continue to steer the EU towards its sinister end-game against the citizens of its ill-fated member nations.


End of post.

Sunday, 25 November 2018

The political declaration of UK & EU: a continuation of narcisstic globalism

The Political Declaration Setting Out the Framework for the Future Relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom ("PD") underpins of the Withdrawal Agreement ("WA").

The scope of the PD - that is, the scope of the future relationship between the UK and EU - is more-or-less that of the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union ("TOFU").

Therefore, one can reasonably conclude that, to the extent that the TOFU is objectively the supremacy of corruptible technocracy over decentralised democracy, the PD aims to repeat exactly the same anti-democratic mistakes as the European integrationist project.

The extent to which the UK and EU appear ready to continue wasting valuable resources on their narcissistic vanity projects is set out consistently throughout the PD.   An easy example to grasp is clause 79 (title XIV, "level playing field for open and fair competition").  Translated into plain English, this clause declares the UK's intention to follow the same policy mistakes as the EU and other international bodies in respect of state aid, competition, social and employment standards, environmental standards, climate change and relevant tax matters.  Presumably, this choice shall include any pseudo-scientific "evidence" to prop up the pre-determined policy choice, and then use the "precautionary principle" for anything that needs making-up.  Therefore, any opportunity that the UK could spot, and which the EU is too slow/stupid/corrupt to adopt, shall be effectively denied under the intentions of this PD.

This is another incident that typifies the whole problem of the European project.  Its default policy choice of a monopolistic "one size fits all", combined with its willingness to listen only to corporate lobbyists, choosing policies that suppress better-value alternatives to the existing dominant oligarchs (often by means of policies that create artificially bloated overhead costs to create a barrier to entry into the market) shall aid significantly to the slow death of Europe as we know it, and its relegation to a future "developing" economy.

As a by-product - a by-product! - one can say definitively that the substance of Brexit shall not happen.  As a consequence, none of the advantages and opportunities of deviating from the cynical agenda of Marxist globalisation shall be within reach.  Brexit shall be a technicality that somehow allows the gravy train to continue, necessarily at the expense of us ordinary taxpaying plebs.

For matters European, therefore, the ordinary British taxpaying pleb is in a situation of taxation with substantially zero representation.

The war of the state against its own people might just have well be published as a headline in the Daily Mail.


Sunday, 18 November 2018

The draft Withdrawal Agreement: a betrayal... of both Remainers and Brexiteers

The Withdrawal Agreement ("WA") comprises:

  • 585 pages (many of which are half-pages, as befits a draft document, lots of white space between paragraphs);
  • 6 parts;
  • 21 titles;
  • 18 chapters;
  • 19 annexes (of which 9 are to the WA and 10 are to one protocol within the WA);
  • 11 parts.


It comes across as a technical document, but it contains technical choices with profound - therefore political - implications.

Overview

The WA's basic approach is enforce EU law - the EU's acquis - onto the UK from the date of the WA.

The ambition is presumably to have the whole of the EU acquis replaced by alternative treaties by the end of the transitional period 31 December 2020.

The WA defines a Joint Committee of EU & UK to agree to terminate parts of the WA when the UK & the EU have established the necessary replacement treaties ("the future relationship", implied within Protocol on Northern Ireland, Article 6).

By its nature, the Joint Committee works on joint agreement.  Foreseeably, the EU would agree only when it is in the EU's interests to agree.  This implies that the EU's political and commercial objectives are met only when the UK has bound itself into the same policy choices as those of the EU.  Deviation from the worst excesses of poor EU policy choice is thus practically impossible for the foreseeable future.  This is bad news.

Just in case the Joint Committee cannot see EU acquis having into treaties during the transition period ending 31 December 2020, the Joint Committee may extend the transitional period once, at any time before 01 July 2020, to a currently unspecified date ("31 December 20XX") [part 4, article 132].

In addition, the WA provides the start of "third country" arrangements regarding trade of live animals, germinal products and animal products.  This sets up the transition period to be one of obligations on UK, without the benefits for having met such obligations (i.e. one-sided obligations).  This is very bad news.

Throughout the transition period, the EU may change its laws in any way that it sees fit, in accordance with its own procedure and political preference.  This is normal process for the EU.  But those changes in law then become binding on the UK, even though the UK would have had either diminished or zero influence on the choice of those laws.  This is very, very bad news.

Some aspects of the WA remain enforceable for 4 years after the end of the transitional period, notionally 31 December 2020, but, in fact, whenever the Joint Committee cynically wants to pick "31 December 20XX".  This is very, very, very bad news.

The European Central Bank is exempt from any conformity assessment and/or licencing that the UK may require.  This is a salutary reminder of how the banksters are still gaming the political system, and lobbying hard to preserve the right to parasitise the ordinary taxpaying pleb.  This is very, very, very, very bad news.

Thus, the WA meets the commercial, financial, strategic and political objectives of the European Union.  In effect, it sets out a method - a process - by which to "hollow out" any residual resources and sovereignty of the UK, to ensure that, whatever the British demos vote for, there shall be taxation without meaningful representation.

Does it meet Remainaics' objectives?


A shibboleth of the Remain campaign has always been that Europe is all about trade, and nothing else.  Let's examine this aspect of the WA.

Objectively, in all treaties, a useful trade policy requires strategic sacrifice of sovereignty.

Thus, the WA contains an unpleasant surprise to the gullible Remainiac: the WA goes well beyond the open-ended sacrifice demanded by the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union ("TOFU").

The effect of the WA is to sabotage, potentially forever, UK's ability to conduct its own commercial policy.

For those Remainiacs who felt that economics was all that mattered, this WA ultimately gives them what they want: the permanent crippling of UK's ability to conduct a useful commercial policy at all.

That this ultimately hollows out the interests of the Remainiacs themselves is, of course, one of the greatest ironies of the whole UK v EU issue, but one would not expect gullible Remainiacs to analyse this irony (let alone understand it).

Actually, it goes beyond Remainiacs' objectives

The Rt Hon Kenneth Clark was once reported to have said that he looked forward to the day that the UK Parliament was nothing more than a council chamber meeting in Brussels.  With this WA, there would be no need for the UK to occupy even a small council chamber's broom cupboard in Brussels.

Because the WA provides for the UK to be bound by changes in the EU acquis during the transitional period, it gives the EU the ability to take a short-cut to deepening political integration.

The short-cut mechanism looks fairly easy for the EU to invoke, subject to its own speed of changing or introducing EU acquis.

In effect, the WA converts the UK into the same vassal state as any Member Nation would ultimately become as a consequence of deepening political integration.

And, of course, the WA provides a suitable legal mechanism for the UK to pay for the Single European Army (at least in part) while it is subject to the vassal nature of the (never-ending?) transitional period.

Thus, the WA is a tool of accelerated integration.  Integration is quicker because the WA by-passes the procedures/protocols set out in the TOFU et seq.

Far from Brexit In Name Only ("BRINO"), the WA is actually the basis of an accelerated anti-Brexit!

Does it meet UKGov's objectives?


We know that the British establishment is a Remainiac establishment.

Its objectives are to lock-in political privilege (along with the accompanying gravy train) for itself, necessarily at the expense of us ordinary taxpaying plebs, resulting in taxation without meaningful representation.

No part of the WA could be rationally upheld as a departure from the EU.  The WA provides a framework for mis-appropriating wealth from ordinary taxpaying plebs to the cynical, sinister, parasitic elite, undermining the functional objectives of Brexit for all leave voters, resulting in the most stitched-up vassal state in modern "democratic" history.

Thus, the WA meets the political objectives of the British establishment.

What are the implications on ordinary taxpaying plebs?


Accordingly, the WA is, in effect, a declaration of war by the UK establishment against us, its own taxpaying plebs.  It is type of financial serfdom akin to that in the Russian Czarist empire.

All of this could have been avoided had the UK opted for the European Free Trade Area, signed the European Economic Area and invoked Articles 112-114 to provide immediate relief for immigration issues.

That the Remainaics poisoned the EFTA/EEA option and instead schemed towards the WA reveals the despicable nature of the Remainiacs' sickening ideology against the economic and democratic welfare of us ordinary plebs.  Truly evil people.

UKGov continues to have:

  • no strategy within the EU;
  • even less of a strategy outside of the EU; and
  • no strategy to avoid a civil war in UK.

Bootnote: the UK media

Since the publication of the WA, the UK has consistently reported that it is "500 pages long".

It's actually 585 pages long, so perhaps the miserable hacks would have rounded it up to 600?

But, naaah, the miserable hacks could even get this detail right.


Technical references


  • Preamble, "CONSIDERING that there is a need for both the United Kingdom and the Union to take all necessary steps to begin as soon as possible after 29 March 2019 the formal negotiations of one or several agreements governing their future relationship with a view to ensuring that, to the extent possible, those agreements apply from the end of the transition period,"
  • Part 1, Article 4, paras 2-5.
  • Part 2, Title 3, Article 30, paras 2 & 4.
  • Part 2, Title 3, Article 33, para 1.
  • Part 2, Title 3, Article 39.
  • Part 3, Title 1, Article 41, para 3.
  • Part 3, Title 10, Chapter 1, Article 87, paras 1-2.
  • Part 3, Title 10, Chapter 1, Article 89, para 1.
  • Part 3, Title 10, Chapter 2, Article 93, para 1.
  • Part 3, Title 13, Article 123, para 1, last sentence.
  • Part 4, Article 127, para 2.
  • Part 4, Article 129, paras 1-2.
  • Part 4, Article 132, paras 1-2.
  • Part 6, Title 2, Article 164, all of it.
  • Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, Article 1, para 4.
  • Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, Article 6, para 1.
  • Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, Annex 2, Article 3, para 1.
  • Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, Annex 2, Article 4, para 1, 3.