- Money Morning Australia

Could it Be True Not One Single Taxpayer Dollar Ended Up With the Banks?

Written on 11 February 2010 by Kris Sayce

Some mornings your editor sits at our desk not knowing what to write to you about – could you guess?

Other mornings our story cup is overflowing with, erm, story coffee…

Anyway, today is one of those “Other” mornings.

We’ve got so much to write we’re not sure whether to just fight one of them individually, or attack them all kung-fu style.

So, we might do a bit of both. First up we noticed a couple of funny things in the Commonwealth Bank’s results yesterday.

The most obvious was that Ralph Norris is clearly a graduate of the same university as ANZ Bank’s Mike Smith. They both hail from the Pinocchio University.

Because, like Smith, Norris was able to tell a whacking great tissue of lies yesterday by claiming:

“[Australian] Banks were well managed, with more conservative business models which discouraged high risk lending and widespread exposure to toxic subprime assets. The Australian government introduced guarantees to support the financial system, but it should be noted that not one dollar of taxpayer money has gone to our banks. In fact, the Australian taxpayer will benefit to the tune of $5.5 billion from the wholesale guarantee over its life.”

That’s funny, because we thought the government had handed out $21,000 to first homebuyers over the last year or so.

Could it really be true that not one single dollar of taxpayers’ money ended up with the banks? It doesn’t seem likely, not when you consider how reliant people are on using bank accounts these days.

You see, in order for the banks not to have received “one dollar” from taxpayers, that would involve the vendors to all property sales specifically choosing to not deposit $21,000 of the sales proceeds into their bank account.

All vendors since October 2008 who have sold homes to first homebuyers must be still holding the $21,000 in cash. Maybe they’re keeping it under the mattress, or they’ve dug a hole in the backyard to put it in.

I’m serious. For Norris’s statement to be true, then over $4 billion in bank notes must been hoarded by vendors, refusing to save, invest or spend it.

Because that’s the only way that Australia’s banks would have avoided receiving “one dollar” of taxpayer money.

And we know that just isn’t possible.

Of course most of the mainstream press just laps whatever a bank CEO says without question. Except for Eric Johnston at The Age who reported:

“Mr Norris is correct to point out that unlike the US or across Europe, no taxpayer dollars were spent bailing out an Australian bank… However, Australia’s majors had a substantial boost from the combined efforts of the government providing a blanket guarantee of the nation’s deposits, as well as a backstop funding program to ensure continued access to crucial wholesale funding markets – albeit for a fee.”

But we’ll stop short of tipping our cap to Johnston, because like most in the mainstream he can’t help himself with the claim that “Australian banks were run with substantially lower risk settings than some of their global counterparts.”

Yeah right!

If that’s the case, why the need for the guarantees and the first home buyers bribe? It just doesn’t add up.

Australia’s banks are so low risk, that apparently, according to The Age, “The State government-owned developer that has responsibility for providing affordable housing is selling house and land packages in East Keilor for close to $1 million.”

It’s true, you can see the properties for yourself here.

But what about this idea that the taxpayer will ‘profit’ from the bail outs due to the fee charged by the government to guarantee the bank’s debt?

Of course, that’s not true either.

The obvious point is that the banks just pass the higher funding costs through to the customer by either charging higher interest rates to borrowers or offering lower interest rates to savers.

The bank itself doesn’t pay for it. Ultimately it’s a fee borne by the public. And because credit and bank accounts are so ingrained into the daily lives of individuals, those individuals are unable to avoid those higher costs.

I mean, just say the government provided a guarantee to bakers of white bread which cost the bakers 10 cents per loaf. The bakery would try to pass this cost onto the consumer.

However, the consumer could easily avoid this impost by refusing to buy white bread and instead buy multigrain bread. This effect would mean that white bread bakers would be less inclined to pass on the increased cost for fear of losing customers to bakers who make multigrain.

Of course, even then it wouldn’t necessarily be good news for the consumer, as due to a higher demand for multigrain, those bakers could raise their prices in response to the higher demand until white and multigrain bread are a similar price.

The upshot is, that in whatever form it’s made, government interference in the market is always to the detriment of the individual.

The banking system is completely different. All the banks have used the government wholesale guarantee to some degree, therefore not one bank can advertise that it hasn’t and therefore claim it has lower fees.

Therefore the banks can uniformly raise their prices so that the consumer never gains the benefit of even a temporary drop in price.

In addition, it’s much harder to change banks than it is to change the type of bread you eat. So the banks know there is no chance of losing customers if they pass the costs through to customers.

Besides, what’s with the idea that the government is able to run a profitable enterprise? Taxpayers aren’t going to make money on the deal. Every dollar that goes to the government is a dollar that’s denied to the individual.

The fact is, Governments don’t make profits. They aggressively expropriate money – called taxation – from private citizens. And then they waste it by either spending it on themselves and the wasteful coercive sector, or they hand the cash out to their chums, such as Senator Conroy and his mate.

But take the farce of the Green Loans programme and the $850 million overspend on the solar scheme.

That’s proof that governments are incapable of managing money or running a profitable business. After all, if these dudes were any good at running a business they’d be out doing that rather than leading the life of a parasitic politician or public servant.

But the biggest point to come out of these ‘green’ schemes is that it gives you a preview to how an emissions trading scheme, or any other government sponsored carbon reduction scheme would work.

If the government claims the cost of its programme will be $40 billion, you can guarantee the real cost will be about ten times that amount. And we’re not exaggerating either.

The reasons are simple – the government has no profit motive, therefore it has no level at which it knows when to stop spending money. If it runs out of cash then it just takes more from the taxpayer.

Government obtains all of its money by force – through taxation. Therefore it does not have to justify its spending, and nor does it face competition from others who could provide the service for less – typically because the government prevents competition by law.

And don’t think the so-called cheaper option put forward by the Coalition will be any better. Both will involve an excessive cost burden on the taxpayer and the consumer, and neither plan will have any impact on global warming or cooling whatsoever.

As we’ve written before, the only solution to discovering whether there is Climate Change, and therefore whether to do anything about it, is to leave it to a free market.

You need look no further than the current disaster with green initiatives to see how your future tax dollars will be flushed down the toilet by the loony green lobby.


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29 Comments For This Post

  1. cb Says:

    Watch these brief comments by Grayson about Obama’s comments on Wall Street Bank bonuses. Truer words have never been spoken.

  2. cb Says:

    Sorry, this is the link:

  3. Rocket Says:

    The biggest threat to the Australian economy is if the Chinese economy hits the wall then we will see the dominoes fall in our economy. Then we will see if our politicians can make some real tough decisions rather than the “phony” tough decions the Feds have made so far. If China continues on cruise control for years to come everthing will be just fine.

  4. GB Says:

    rocket i just posted this on DR – i am not a china bear but i dont believe the china hype – they need to slow growth down

    I have a few thoughts on the property bubble

    1. to buy a property in china requires a deposit between 30% and 50%
    2. so chinese savings which could be $100,000 plus is being locked up in the most illiquid asset – property
    3. Even Jim Rogers the china perma-bull has said there is a bubble in some cities

    Therefore you could say that China is transferring the nations wealth into a property bubble…

    I’d laugh but i am not sure if that’s funny

  5. cb Says:

    Rocket – what were the phony tough decisions and what would be the real tough ones?

  6. Richard F Says:

    Hi cb,

    I gathered from Rockets post that ‘phony tough decisions’ meant bailing everyone out and then trying to inflate their way out of their own debt problems. All that’s doing it shifting the problem into the future and onto the tax payer. These so called ‘real tough decisions’ would be to let these entities default. Sure this is tough on Bond and Equity holders, but its called risk for a reason. Short term pain equals long term gain! There my thoughts anyway but Rocket, I’d be interested if you expanded further on what you meant too!!

    It’s going to be interesting to see how the EU pollies deal with their current problems. Personally I think France and Germany will ‘bail out’ Greece and other PIGS…although they’ll do it by slight of hand as governements do so well, so that it won’t appear as though they have. The exposure that the German and French banks have to the PIGS is enormous, so there all in it together. Should they leave Greece to deal with it themselves…of course! Will they……I think we all know the answer to that one.

  7. Craig S Says:

    I haven’t seen anything on the super discussion recently. What was the outcome of the review? Perhaps the Govt should consider reducing the tax paid on our super contributions from 15% to 10% to increase our future saving if they think additional super will help? This may even encourage some to contribute more without being unfairly penalised by our friends in Canberra prescribing what happens to our hard earned money.

    They could offset the reduced tax by not providing any more insulation payments to dodgy installation contractors who have been installling the unsafe insullation. Good on you Peter Garrett!! Not that I was ever a fan of Pauline, but it’s funny how things go full circle…

  8. cb Says:

    Thanks Richard. Yes, it has all been stitched up by the banking cartel – that’s for sure. They have managed to make the economies of the world totally addicted to their credit and debt, and now are holding the taxpayers through their governments to ransom, threatening the blow themselves up, and along with themselves the economies of various countries, unless certain amounts of cash a handed over to them from time to time, on demand. This is the game, and this is why Max Keiser is right to call them financial te!!o!ists.

    If correct, instead giving in to them, they should be variously allowed to fail, as you suggest, and where racketeering and illegal activity can be demonstrated, they should be charged and put away. Alas, the political class is a co-dependent of these shysters, so they will just do everything under the sun to look after each other at the taxpayer’s expense.

    That is what is happening, and that is why I am often reluctant to assume that all that is happening is some natural event, guided by some natural, economic laws. Sure, these things are part of the mix, as there are rules to the game, which will be observed while they suit the special interests, but they will diregarded, changed, and broken as soon as special interests deem it oh so necessary. To push through some of the legislation and rule changes, they will create crises as needed, so that they can implement their preferred changes as ‘solutions’ to the supposed crisis, or problem.
    Welcome to the Matrix, where hardly anything is what it seems.

  9. Nick Says:

    For those who still have faith in that fiat currency and China, here is a good article. As far back as I can remember my father used to say to me that the circumstances of his life’s journey did not allow him to become wealthy or highly educated. So as a result he could not teach me any “academic” wisdom. He would say ” I cant teach you education so I will pay others with my sweat to do that. But what I CAN teach you is something thatI have greater qualifications than most, and that is I will teach you how to SURVIVE”

  10. etch Says:

    happy new century …happy new year ..same bs …wat a joke

  11. BB Says:

    So the indefatigable Aussie spenders splashed out a new record $22 billion on their plastic in December according to the Reserve Bank. Now we know why Glen and the crew shat their pants on raising rates. If Barnaby had drawn focus on the level of Australian household debt – rather than Government debt – and the issue of risk of default he would have been spot on. We are the biggest debt driven bunch of spendaholics. Westfield megamalls have become the place we seek solace and retail therapy using the money we are yet to earn the drug that soothes our souls. Have a little read of Alan Kohler’s piece correctly titled ‘The Reckoning’ over at BS. We are the pack of roo’s caught in the headlights waiting for the bull bar. If you are thinking about buying a house – just hang out a few months. What’s the downside risk of maybe five thousand bucks if the property zombie frenzy were to somehow continue here in ‘It’s Different Land’? On the upside, there is now a significant likelihood that you could be rewarded by showing a little patience. Then the reckoning will really take hold.

  12. EC Says:

    Re Dave Kidd’s baffling post on Wednesday:

    Dave, I am glad that Drew and cb have pointed out the problems with your post about Jews controlling America.

    I would also note that a Google search for ‘Jews control America’ is not, as you suggest, ‘as good a place as any’ to find accurate information on this topic. Try Googling ‘aliens control the world’ or ‘women are the devil’, and see how compelling and accurate the results of those searches are.

    My point is that people say crazy things, particularly on the internet, and you should not simply accept everything you read, particularly when those things involve spreading hatred against a particular group.

    Of course your search for ‘Jews control America’ will bring up crazy hateful web pages! What else would it bring up? If you actually want to get some more balanced views on this issue, you might try searching for ‘Israel Palestine debate’ or ‘Middle East politics’ or even ‘persecution of Palestinians’ or (I think these ones might be particularly helpful for you) ‘persecution of Jews’ and ‘Jewish conspiracy theories’.

  13. etch Says:

    i’ve READ the reckoning in australias its all good ,,unless i ‘ve missed something???????


  14. BB Says:

    How about this etch “That suggests the Rudd government will be pouring something like $40 billion of stimulus into an economy this year that the Reserve Bank is trying to hold back with higher interest rates.” The Reserve will lift and lift and lift to try to counteract inflationary pressures even if it means collateral damage. If it doesn’t control inflation then there will be little incentive for investors to park money here unless of course the interest rates on offer are way up. If you missed the subtitle Kohler also suggests that its not just the insolvency problems of the PIGS nations. He closes by stating that every other western economy will eventually face precisely the same challenge. Even us. Decreasing the ‘credit’ drug isn’t going to be pretty. Money is going to get far more expensive than it has been so if you felt comfortable borrowing $500,000 plus to purchase the great Australian dream it could fast become a living nightmare. And when the dominoes start to fall there will be no second bailout or support monies. They’ve spent it.

  15. etch Says:

    Peter Garrett ..gives the nod…its a set back for your country

  16. cb Says:

    BB, I would not be confident at all that there is not going to be a second round of spending to sustain cashflow through the economy. Especially, in our case, where the govt is looking to be re-elected and weasel little Grubb has demonstrated ample willingness to spend, not only our money, but also the yet to be earned money of future generations to ensure his re-election.

    If the economy will look like it is going to stall around about election time, who do you think the voters are going to vote for when they feel the pinch in their back pockets? Or to put it a little differently, when did the good people fail to do the individually rational thing of voting for their back pockets? And if we answer that question along the most likely correct lines, then a second round of stimulus, should it be needed, is not at all unlikely. And if you are right that the economy is going to turn South again in the coming months, then you could quite safely assume that, should that indeed start to happen, the cheque will be in the mail.

  17. Dave Kidd Says:

    I see EC has re-posted here his comment from an earlier thread, so for his convenience I will re-post my reply to it. Someone in charge of the Money Morning website might like to consider ways in which long-running discussions can be better catered for. With the current format, earlier parts of such discussions easily get lost amongst older topics, making things cumbersome to find, and making it almost impossible to get a comprehensive grasp of complex matters.

    My reply to EC’s post was:

    Sorry EC, I must have overlooked your post @52. You wrote: ‘I am glad that Drew and cb have pointed out the problems with your post about Jews controlling America.’ But of course the problems caused for us by Jews controlling America are far greater than any my post could generate.

    You mention some of the rubbish that can be found by doing Google searches, but it’s worth pointing out that by including everything relevant in its search results, Google gives us the opportunity to sort out and discard the rubbish ourselves instead of letting some probably biassed big brother do the sorting for us. If we were seeking info likely to be unfavourable to jews you can understand why we would not want a jew deciding which articles we should read.

    EC went on: ‘Of course your search for ‘Jews control America’ will bring up crazy hateful web pages! What else would it bring up?’
    My search did indeed find some crazy hateful web pages, and I have never heard a good explanation of why it is people get so worked up with hatred for jews. But my search also found more sane, well researched articles that closely aligned with my experience of more than 10 years of noting the doings of jews throughout the world. I suppose when someone finds that something written agrees with things he has seen reported elsewhere over many years, it is natural for that someone to conclude that what is written is credible.

  18. BB Says:

    I think we will see the election sooner rather than later this year. Then as all good governance decrees, the very bad news (which couldn’t possibly have been foreseen of course) will be delivered as early as possible in the new term of a Rudd government. You remember him right? He’s the bloke who sold himself as an ‘economic conservative’ in 2007.

  19. cb Says:

    Rudd is a gutless little weasel who is bent on ruining the country in cahoots with Glenn Stevens. The more the latter raises rates, the more the former borrows to stimulate, which in turn enables the latter to raise rates again, which again licences the former to borrow more to stimulate yet, more, and so round and round we go until we, as a nation, are completely broke.

  20. EC Says:

    Hi Dave Kidd, I think you’re missing the point.

    You may well have seen some well researched information that identifies all the Jewish people in America who hold positions of power or influence. Now, this research will not identify all the non-Jews who hold positions of power or influence in America. It will also not identify all the Jews who do NOT hold positions of power or influence, in America or anywhere else.

    To move from the proposition ‘many Jews hold powerful positions in America’ to ‘Jews control America’ is to move from a potentially defenisble point which is explained by a cultural predisposition amongst Jewish families to value education (which has been proven to improve anyone’s chances of securing an influential job), to a prejudiced stereotype which suggests that the Jewish people as a whole are involved in one big great conspiracy to run America for their own benefit.

    The former proposition may be true, although it may also be true of many many other cultural groups. The latter proposition is patently absurd. Surely you are not claiming to have found any well researched information that proves a global Jewish conspiracy. Or are you?

  21. Nick Says:

    EC… are not the Jews living by a several thousand year “quest” of the “promised land”? Why did the Jews try to “scuttle” one movie called “The Passion” as “offensive to Jews” while we are constantly bombarded with movies and documentaries of the “Holocaust” which has clearly become a trademark to keep the issue alive? Isn’t that grossly offensive to the Germans? My parents and extended family suffered horrifically under the Nazi regime but never condemned the German citizens for that. They are intelligent enough to understand that an evil regime FORCES its people to act and behave in particular ways. Don’t forget that many Germans, who were long time neighbours of Jews in Germany, set out to hide and shelter their Jewish neighbours at great risk to their own lives. The reason my parents came to Australia was due to a similar act my father did for an escaped Aussie POW in Greece. Has this “experience” made the Jews more compassionate to their neighbours? Why was the movie “Schindlers List” the only movie that received an academy award by Spielberg? He created many box office hits but the award was given to a flop. When the historian Irvine wanted to come to Australia to debate his “theories” it was the Jews influence that forbade him attaining an entry visa? Yet degenerate rock “stars” are allowed in freely. It would have been more sensible to let Irvine come and debate his “theory” and if he was wrong, then he would look like a fool. Just like the climate debate today. Rudd & co wanted NO debate but Monckton was successful in putting his debate across and the rest is history. It is a human instinct to assume that when one side of a point of view is not allowed to be debated then it automatically shows an onlooker that there is something to hide. Once again, see climate debate.
    I too know many Jews. A fraction of them are appalled by what Israel is doing to Palestine and are shunned by others in their community. These are the free thinkers and people whom I have the greatest respect for. The others are more “hard lined” and arrogant. No different to the Jihad extremists. I also have Muslim friends and acquaintances. All are decent family people and are very active in trying to make their community learn to live together with other Australians. If you are a Jew or seek to defend the Jewish cause, then I suggest that you follow these peoples example and try to convince those in leadership to learn to live together with their neighbours instead of aggravating through aggression.
    I grew up as a child of a migrant family. I know what it is like to be persecuted, however, rather than “hate” all Aussies I was taught to earn respect by accomplishing and contributing. I entered the events my school friends did, swimming, surfing nippers, basketball, rugby, water polo. I achieved many trophies for all these sports. By late high school I was elected prefect then school captain. Yes, there were still the ones who “hated” wogs but they were quickly swamped by the majority who put the thugs in their place and hence I have never looked back since. This should be the same for all cultures. Wrong is wrong whichever way you look at it. Those of sane mine should strive to better this world not lead it down a path that we, and the generations that follow us, will regret.

  22. EC Says:

    Nick, thanks for your reply. I agree that it is legitimate to criticize Israel, just as it is legitimate to criticize America, Iran, Australia or any other country. But we should never prejudge any one member of a group based on the actions of other members of the group.

    I don’t think this is what you do, but unfortunately it is implied in statements like ‘the Jews’ try to scuttle the Passion – it was not ‘the Jews’, it was ‘some Jews’.

    Can you imagine how it would feel, as a Jewish person living an ordinary life with an ordinary job of no great importance, trying to raise a family like any other person, to read a statement like ‘the Jews control America’? Can you imagine? To imagine that someone out there, in fact, lots of people, who you’ve never met, but who resent you or hate you. It would be terrifying.

  23. cb Says:

    Another bent scientist in the hot seat. This time, it is chief warmmonger “hockey stick” Prof. Michael Mann. Mann has been the butt of jokes for a long time for his fraud, but this time it starts looking as if he might be called to answer. Too right, too.

  24. Nick Says:

    EC… I am with you all the way. I have lived that way. Truly I know. Take a look at Greece today, they are not representative of all who left that country and toiled to better the next generations. What I am saying is that YOU prove the critics wrong as I have. Lead by example. I can hold my head up high today. I take pride in my heritage and use my parent’s lessons to teach my kids how to live a full and productive life. I jokingly remind my kids that it was a Greek that brought Madoff down!!
    I have said before that religion is a personal journey for each of us. My view is whomever you call God is not the point. The fact that one believes that there is a greater being takes the focus off one’s self and more towards the common good. Unfortunately, society, hence our politicians, have lost this. Sadly, there are no “statesmen” any more. The populace is more powerful than you think and if we could all follow logic rather than what the various propaganda machines dictate, then the animosity between the ordinary folk, will be vastly reduced.
    Evil will ALWAYS exist. It is as certain as there is day and night. You have heard it many times that ”evil men succeed, only when good men do nothing”. The issue is which one would you support.

  25. cb Says:

    EC – I am very much in sympathy for the disempowered, the run of the mill average guy who is the brick and mortar of any nation. And that includes everyone, regardless of citizenship, creed, or race, and I fully endorse everything that Nick has said on the topic.

    What is most likely to be behind simplistic claims like the one you take objection to, are such evidence, many of them plain to see and well documented, as that of the US consistently defeating any censoring motion put forward in the UN that seek to condemn the countless and ongoing gross human rights violations of the Palestinians in their own, ancestral homelands, and worse.

    So, while it is understandable that many ordinary Jews would find “Jews control America” to be an offensive claim, there can be little doubt that the political influence of the Jewish lobby in the US and many other countries, enables the ongoing obscenities to be perpetrated on the men, women and children of a Palestinian background by the Israeli state and Zionist fanatics. Those who do not believe that Jewish interests control large sections of the media, Wall Street and Washington, as well as the politics and governments of many other countries, have their heads firmly planted in the sand.

    As Nick said, injustice is injustice, and wrong is wrong, and the fanaticism with which Israelis oppress their Palestinian sisters and brothers (don’t be offended, Palestinians are our fellow human beings, plus think of Jakob and Esau of the Old Testament – I think I got those two sons of Isaac right) is no different from the fanaticism they themselves endured from the Nazis.

    The bottom line is that right minded people will condemn outrages and attrocities, so this is what you are getting in the criticism, which, as often happens to be the case, is frequently framed in awkward and less than happy terms.

    And, finally, until MSM and various governments of the world stop giving free passes to Israel over injustices and wrongs that offend a decent man, they will never shake the accusations and suspicion that they are pandering to, and are being influenced by, if not outright controlled by, powerful, if narrow, Jewish interests.

    But hey, none of this criticism is going to make much of a difference to the thinking of those in the grip of Zionist fanaticism, so what will be will be. You cannot fool all of the people all of the time, and you cannot control all of the people all of the time either, and therefore my longer term expectation would be along the lines of the Old Testament’s As you sow, so shall you reap.” It is somewhat bemusing to see when the majority of a people ignores its own pearls of wisdom.

  26. Dave Kidd Says:

    EC reckons I’m missing the point.

    What he doesn’t know is that I have followed numerous similar discussions in other places dealing with discreditable behaviour by the jews. I have not attempted to clutter this forum by mentioning all of it here, nor even to exhaustively prove the few points I have touched on. That does not mean these points can not be proven, just that this is probably not the place to do it. They have already been substantiated in other places, anyway.

    One thing I’ve learned from the discussions in other places is that jews and their supporters will present unending argument ad-infinitum in defense of their beliefs and behaviour. To be honest I’m not interested in going through it all again but I do urge readers to do their own investigation into the influence of the jews on the world. There are still numerous sources of information available both on the Internet and elsewhere, despite vigorous efforts of jews and their supporters to marginalize and discredit them.

  27. EC Says:

    Nick and cb. I think we are basically in agreement, and I have to say I am reassured by your latest contributions. I look forward to contributing to more savoury topics in the future.

  28. Nick Says:

    EC…you see, when logical people discuss things only logic prevails.

  29. EC Says:

    Long live logic!


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