Greece ‘unlikes’ freedom of the press

Journalist arrested for disclosing a list of tax evaders

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | OCTOBER 29, 2012

Investigative journalist Kostas Vaxevanis will go on trial for publishing the so-called ‘Lagarde list’, which contains the names of 2,059 Greek people with bank accounts in Switzerland. The document, whose authenticity the government in Athens refuses to confirm, includes at least three politicians, two of them from the New Democracy, the party of Prime Minister Andonis Samaras. These people have accounts at the HSBC bank. The journalist appears Monday in court accused of publishing confidential data.

Vaxevanis was arrested Sunday morning at a friend’s house in Athens, amid a security deployment that he called a “fascist militia” in one of his Twitter messages. This Saturday, Hot Doc, who runs the fortnightly magazine where Vaxevanis made the documents public, ran the headline “All the names of the Lagarde list”.

The story is not new. In autumn 2010, six months after the first bailout of Greece, the then French Finance Minister, Christine Lagarde, gave his Greek counterpart, George Papaconstantinou, a list of 2059 names of Greek citizens with accounts in Switzerland as documentary evidence of the inveterate habit of evading taxes by professionals and entrepreneurs in Greece.

The fight against tax fraud was one of the flags of the socialist government of George Papandreou, along with a clamorous demand from international lenders, the troika form by the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund (the latter currently headed by Lagarde).

But the ‘Lagarde list’ apparently fell into oblivion and did not surface until earlier this month when Papaconstantinou’s successor as head of the Ministry of Economy and now leader of a party adrift, the socialist Evánguelos Venizelos, surrendered the list to authorities. Both declared that they had no information on the whereabouts of the list, but gave conflicting testimonies, said journalist Michalis Samozraki a Hot Doc hournalist during a phone conversation.

“In recent months there has been much controversy over the matter. Papaconstantinou and Venizelos were summoned by a special parliamentary committee, but told a different story from their previous one, that they had no knowledge about the existence of the ‘Lagarde list’; while later, they said they could not publish it because it was confidential … They used this as an excuse. But the Greeks began to feel cheated. That is why the fact that his colleague was arrested for publishing the list, is seen by Samozraki as an “act of total censorship. ”

Sources say the magazine received a copy of the ‘Lagarde list’ anonymously and Vaxevanis himself vindicated his obligation to disclose it, despite the threat of legal action: “I have done nothing but what a journalist is obliged to do: reveal some hidden truth “, says in a video sent to Reuters. “If anyone should be prosecuted, those are ministers who hid the list, the ‘lost’ list that they said it didn’t exist. I just did my job. I am a journalist and that’s my job. ”

In the list published by Hot Doc there are the names of at least three politicians, including two former ministers of New Democracy, one of them is dead, and a current is a director for Samaras. The former Minister Giorgos Voulgarakis denied having money in Switzerland, despite being on the list.

The potential arrest of Vaxevanis was known since Saturday after it was issued by a Greek prosecutor. Vaxevanis has under his belt investigations that include the scandal known as  the Vatopedi case — one of the largest corruption scandals in the last five years and also collaborates as a journalist on the website Koutipandoras.gr (Pandora’s Box). “They entered the house with a prosecutor,” said Vaxevanis on his Twitter account. “They are detaining me. Please spread the word.” Pictures of the outside of the building where he was showed a large police operation which included a strong checkpoint.

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Do you want a recovery? Let the foreign banks fail

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | OCTOBER 24, 2012

Although the financial crisis is said to have begun in 2008, its actual inception started many years before. As explained yesterday, the so-called recovery that almost every politician says governments are seeking is a sham. There are no plans drawn to have a recovery of the kind spoken of on the main stream media. In fact, it is totally the opposite.

It is true; the crisis that we are experiencing is the worst since the Great Depression of the 1930’s, but the conditions that created the crisis are the same that have existed for the past century. The system of creating money out of thin air enables the money makers to inject fake capital into economies, in what is called investments. After the economies get addicted to ‘free’ quick money to build their businesses, the issuers of the fake money take it away quickly or demand immediate return on those ‘investments’, which causes the decapitalization of those economies and consequently their collapse.

The causes of what seemed to have unraveled in 2008 began at the start of the 20th century with the adoption of the debt-based economic model. According to its precepts, governments yield the power to issue money to a group of international bankers who issue the it on behalf of governments around the world at a profit of as much as 30 percent or so. The interests accrued due to the issuance of the money — which is given to governments as a credit — is charged on those governments’ credit card and are immediately added to the tabs of the people who work to sustain government spending.

In a sense, the debt-based economic model originated on the irresponsibility from the part of the bureaucrats who manage the  government. Instead of spending the people’s money responsibly, the bureaucrats thought it was a better idea to borrow cash at immense interest rates, rather than decrease spending. Then, they decided to accept bribes and advice from international bankers to finance their out of control expenditures while charging the interests of the debt on the working classes.

The same system initiated in 1913, is still used today everywhere there is a central bank. Whether the bank is a private entity or an agency of the government is irrelevant. The bureaucrats elected to represent the people borrow money from the IMF and the World Bank, for example, in exchange for adopting specific policies that will guarantee the international bankers their ownership of the labor force for many generations into the future.

The money paid by working people to the central governments is not used to improve the communities where they live. They go to pay the interests on the debt acquired by the same central government in the name of the people. The type of improvements promised by politicians during their political campaigns are not paid with taxpayer money, but with the cash borrowed from the international bankers. The bankers arrive to nation-states and offer loans to governments that do not have enough liquidity to carry out the promises made during the political campaign. The government accepts all the conditions on the loan contract and effectively sign away sovereignty to the money makers.

The collapse of the kind the world is experiencing now is the last step of the plan that bankers have put together and implemented to become the sole owners of everything out there. The important difference between previous crises and the current one is that this may just be the last time bankers need to use their plan. That is because this time the bankers may simply walk away with everything, so no more manufactured crises will be needed.

The question is then, how do we stop the bankers from doing the same they’ve done in Greece, where they’ve looted it all? It is very easy, actually. All of Europe and the rest of the world needs to do the same that Iceland did. Instead of saying that international financial institutions were too big to fail, Iceland decided to kick them out. As it turns out, around 90 percent of the debt held by the Icelandic government was debt created by the banks and only 10 percent was actual debt incurred into by the people. After that fact was carefully determined, Iceland decided to take the other path towards a real recovery.

Believe it or not, Iceland decided to let the banks fail, which is exactly the opposite of what was done in Italy, France, Greece, Spain, England and the United States, to cite a few countries. Everywhere else where the crisis touched international banks, governments decided that it was a bad idea to tell the banks to get out of their countries and to take their debt with them. Instead, they printed more fake money to ‘rescue’ those banks and passed the debt to the people, who will have to pay interests on that debt for generations to come. This move not only did not solve the problem because the only thing it accomplished was to increase the debt, but also worsened economic conditions as no real solutions to the crisis were enacted.

At the beginning of 2008, the banks operating in Iceland owed the equivalent of 6 times the country’s GDP. The government there decided to nationalize the 3 most important debtor banks, which caused the devaluation of the local currency — the króna — by 85 percent. This seemed to spell trouble for Iceland, but contrary to common wisdom it actually help the nation have a real recovery while it maintained much of its independence and sovereignty. The government went bankrupt by the end of the year, but the country avoided having to make the citizens responsible for the debt generated by the international banks.

Along with the devaluation of the króna, Iceland experienced soaring inflation immediately after the declaration of bankruptcy. Meanwhile, the government decided to take all monies and deposit them in the recently nationalized banks in order to start all over again. The move by the Icelandic government meant a short period of real pain, but also gave the opportunity to the people there to start fresh, with no debt and with spending under control.

By 2010, just two years after the declaration of bankruptcy and the nationalization of the banks, Iceland experienced its first signs of economic growth, which marked the beginning of the recovery. By letting the international banks fail, Iceland not only punished irresponsible bankers for their overreach, but also prevented their people from becoming slaves to the banks. The country also admitted to having some real debt — a tiny portion of the total — and is now working on a successful path to a full recovery.

The lesson we get from all this is the following: We cannot fight fire by dumping gasoline on it. If the origin of the current crisis is the debt-based economic system, no solution will emerge when all we do is create more debt to pay the existing one. The reason why most countries decided to choose the issuance of more debt — as nations in Europe are doing now — is because their politicians are bought and paid for by the bankers to make that decision. If the opposite is done, that is, if the debt generated by the banks is rejected and they are left to fail, we will have many other successful recoveries. It is so simple that even Paul Krugman understands it.

So if you want your country to be free from fake money and fake debt, ask your government to renounce the debt-based development model, which is not even a development model. If all you want is a real recovery, let the banks fail.

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If no one believes in the recovery, why are Europe and the world Trying?

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | OCTOBER 23, 2012

I don’t know you, but I’m sick and tired of hearing about the financial collapse. The financial crisis we are now in was predicted long ago, and those predictions were correct. So why hasn’t it happened? First of all, it is happening. In fact it began a while ago. While many people expected to have a sudden collapse, which dragged the world into a whole, the fall of the international financial system was not planned to take place that way. Second of all, the financial collapse was planned to occur slowly and painfully, not only because the elites that planned it are financial sadists, but also because that is the only way to carry out their plan successfully.

The slow financial collapse allows the perpetrators to slowly bite off pieces from the grand pie, inflicting lethal but manageable pain and damage into the world’s economic and financial systems. This tactic in turn prepares the field for further deterioration and acquiescence from the public and the governments who they control. The kind of financial terrorism carried out by the largest financial entities in the history of the world, which are controlled by the smallest amount of people ever, makes it possible to successfully materialize the elite’s dream to create the most powerful monopoly of money and resources while they present themselves as the saviors.

The truth however, is that they are not saving anyone but themselves. While they buy off politicians and buy up land and essential resources for pennies on whatever currency they want, governments continue to fail to hold them accountable for their crimes. In fact, the bureaucrats in governments are faithful accomplices of the elites. Only one country has been able to partially defeat these monopoly men, and that country is Iceland. After kicking the bankers out, Iceland is now racing on the path of recovery, with a growing economy that simply sparked to life after telling the bankers that the illegal debt they had put under Iceland’s name was not theirs.

Iceland did what no other country had the guts to do: let the banks fail. Four years later, the country is being praised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). That’s right. One of the most important globalist organizations who are out to destroy countries like Italy, Greece, Portugal and Spain, congratulates Iceland for doing the right thing. The Icelandic people did not need to go through austerity programs, they did not lose millions of jobs and neither did they have their pensions or retirement accounts looted by the bankers. “The recovery has been quite impressive. GDP growth has picked up in the last couple of years and is now running around three percent a year,” says Franek Rozwadowski, a visitor from the IMF.

On the other side of the road there are countries like Spain, Italy, Greece and Portugal, all of which chose to follow the bankers’ path to destruction. Spain has increased its debt dramatically in a supposed effort to curb the government’s deficit, imposed massive austerity measures, looted pension and retirement accounts, cut public jobs, accumulated a 24% unemployment rate, “rescued” its banks at least twice, adopted deadly economic policies as ordered by Brussels, but still is on its way to the financial precipice. The same model has been used by Greece, Italy and Portugal, who are following Spain on their way to social collapse. It is estimated that the Spanish debt will reach  23 billion euros by the end of the year, with no hope to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The main reason for this is that the pact completed between the Spanish government and Brussels never intended to take Spain out of the dark tunnel. As explained in the documents obtained from the World Bank, the collapse of most European nations is part of a well-crafted plan that the elite has applied over and over again throughout the world. It happened in small countries like Guatemala, Nicaragua, mid-size countries like Argentina, and now in larger economies like Spain, the United States, France, Italy, Greece and others.

As it turns out, the so-called bailouts are not such things. They are more like acquisitions. As explained by Journalist and researcher Greg Palast — who broke the story about the World Bank’s plan — the idea is to secretly repossess the assets of every country in the world. This is achieved through a bribery system in which the global bankers buy off the politicians in different countries so that they adopt IMF and World bank policies that intend to destroy their economies. Once the policies have been adopted, the bankers begin to slowly but surely subtract the resources of those countries unnoticeably, mainly through financial aid programs and trade agreements.

The mistaken belief that a recovery will come out of the current austerity measures and financial bailouts stems from the well engineered propaganda campaign orchestrated by the banking system and the main stream media, who have gone from denying that there is a crisis to accepting there is one and that the same bankers who caused it, who planned it, are going to be the saviors. Little do most people know that the kind of crisis we are now going through is part of the plant to carry out a planet wide extortion scheme through which the globalist banking elite once again walks away with significant amounts of resources.

The difference is that this time the looting is not limited to once small or mid-sized nation, but to several large countries in Europe and the world. Greek islands are now for sale to the best bidder, because the country cannot pay its debt. Guess who will come to the rescue? The monopoly men will come and buy the islands for cents on the Dragma. The same situation will happen in Spain, once Mariano Rajoy requests the financial rescue. So if you are asking yourself why is it that the economy isn’t getting better despite the continuous assurances that everything on the books is being done to get to that point, the truth is that the banker plan does not contemplate a recovery. At least not one where everyone will have the opportunity to thrive.

Read the complete interview given by Greg Palast after learning about and getting the World Bank’s secret documents that detail how the global financial entities destroy nations.

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Why is Venezuela selling its Gold reserves?

Another equally important question to answer is, where is the cash going?

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | OCTOBER 1, 2012

After loudly announcing the arrival of its gold reserves from Europe on national media, the Venezuelan government is now selling that same gold and allegedly ‘injecting’ the cash from the sales into the economy. “Labeled as a historic event for the country, the arrival of the last shipment of Venezuelan gold arrived from Europe last January, but just as fast as it arrived, it is now leaving the Bolivarian territory.

The government led by Hugo Chavez had to resort to selling the country’s gold reserves to add dollars into the economy. Last January, heavily armored tanks and trucks escorted Venezuela’s gold from one of its ports to the Venezuelan Central Bank coffers, while government-sponsored media parroted about how the return of the gold was a move to strengthen national sovereignty and Venezuela’s economic future. The Venezuelan gold had been in European banks for about two decades before returning to the country, after Hugo Chavez ordered the return back in 2011.

The arrival of the gold that began last year prompted the government to start the sale of gold in order to put more US dollars into the Venezuelan economy. The first sale accounted for 3.2 tonnes of gold, which attempted to alleviate the shortage of dollars. The move to sell gold to get dollars was not made public until recently in Venezuela, after the International Monetary Fund revealed details about the transaction last week.

Early last week, the news agency Reuters published details about the IMF report, which states how Venezuela’s gold reserves decreased by  10.98 tonnes in 2012. The country saw its 372.93 tonnes turn into 362 , 05 tonnes as it was accounted for last August. Just last month, the Central Bank of Venezuela sold 3.2 tons for about $ 300 million.

Last Wednesday, the chairman of the Finance Committee of the National Assembly, the government deputy Ricardo Sanguino, admitted to Caracas’ daily El Mundo that the government had indeed cashed over three tonnes of gold. According to information published by the local press, the sale was made to alleviate the cash dollar shortage facing the country and to cover the payment of imports, which in the past year  increased by 20%.

The main source of foreign cash are Venezuela’s oil exports, which also finance 60% of the national budget. Oil reserves are short right now, while President Hugo Chavez seeks reelection for another 6-year period.

Venezuela possesses today the largest proven reserves of oil while its oil price exceeds $ 102. But state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela (PdVSA) produces below its capacity. A month ago, there was an explosion of fuel tanks of the largest of its refineries. The event killed 48 people and paralyzed operations at the government installation.

Imports are the oxygen of the Venezuelan economy. About 80% of food products consumed in the country are imported: powder milk, meat, sugar, chicken, coffee offered at subsidized prices in the popular market network managed by the state and , along with all this, the government also subsidizes all the social programs that benefit the poorest people who usually support of Hugo Chavez.

These imports are controlled by the government, which since 2003 maintained a strict policy of exchange of products. The purchase of foreign goods is tightly controlled by the Commission of Administration of Foreign Exchange, which decides who, what and how much Venezuelans can buy in foreign currencies.

Only entrepreneurs closer to the government have access to the official rate of 4.3 bolivars per dollar. The rest of the people need to go to the two parallel currency markets operating in the country.

The move to sell gold to flood the currency market with US dollars is seen as a political one from Hugo Chavez, who needs to keep his supporters happy until October 7, the day of the presidential election.

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Israeli Lobbyist Suggests using False-flag to Attack Iran

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | SEPTEMBER 26, 2012

Patrick Clawson a Washington lobbyist and director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), said that the west, especially the United States and Israel are “in the game of using covert means against the Iranians”.

Clawson cited a series of false-flag events as examples that triggered the invasion of non-aligned states and explained how those false-flag events served the plans of the Anglo-saxon military industrial complex.

Clawson was once a senior economist for the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. “We can do a variety of things to increase the pressure,” said Clawson. “We could get nastier about it. So, if in fact the Iranians aren’t going to compromise, it would be best if somebody else started the war,” he asserted.

At a later point, Clawson said that he was in no way recommending the use of such events to attack Iran, even though he said that very same thing throughout his explanation of Iranian-Israeli tensions.

See the video below:

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