We at Notes From Underground have published more than 1,000 posts during the last seven years. I have voiced my displeasure about the annual gathering in Davos for the past five years (last year’s Davos post is below). My battle cry was (ans continues to be): PEPPER SPRAY DAVOS, a response to the heinous police overreaction to the pepper spraying of University of California–Davis students in November 2011. The police POURED pepper spray onto student protesters, a contemptible act of police brutality. I thought if the UC–Davis students were subjected to such a police response for blocking a sidewalk the crony capitalists of global monopolies are surely worthy of such a contemptuous action. The corporate chieftains and their political sycophants, who exchange “insider views” for large speaking fees (and of course a hope to secure a job after leaving political office), have badly damaged the world.
Yes, I know much “GOOD WORK” has been done at Davos. Unfortunately, it has benefited the very few. The basis of my Davos skepticism for 20-plus years is my failure to understand why anyone would pay $600,000 for a full ticket. The media flocks to the Swiss resort because they crave access to the world’s high and mighty but I guarantee that nothing of significance gets reported for those with access will never turn on their HOSTS. The Davos meeting sets the week as we get the ECB meeting on Thursday and the Trump inauguration on Friday. Also, the Bank of Canada meets on Wednesday but no change expected. British Prime Minister Theresa May speaks on Tuesday and Yellen follows on Wednesday.
May is expected to reveal a more defined Brexit plan but I think the market has already pushed the British pound so low that there’s a greater risk of a pound rally. The significant drop in the British pound since the Brexit vote has led to a FOOTSIE rally of 28%. (Although foreigners who have purchased POUNDS have seen their gains eroded by the currency’s depreciation.) However, before the vote the British currency was severely overvalued relative to its current account deficit. The British current deficit has doubled since the onset of the Great Recession, so ultimately a correction was needed. The weakened currency will help alleviate some of the problems of the current account deficit.
During the weekend, President-elect Donald Trump gave a joint interview with the Times of London and the German newspaper Bild. He raised the ire of the Davos crowd when he noted that the EU was a “vehicle for Germany and predicting other countries will follow Britain in leaving the bloc.” He warned that his trust for Chancellor Merkel “… may not last long at all.”
I will get into this more for as my readers know I have voiced concerns about the ECB and the EU and have made it my focal point for 2017. In the severe criticism leveled at Trump about Putin I say to the Germans: Where is the concern about Gerhard Schroeder, the previous Chancellor before Merkel, holding a major job at the Russian oil giant GAZPROM and being very close with Vladimir Putin? This issue is of very great concern in analyzing EU relations with Russia. But for now I am going to dry my eyes as Davos always brings tears to those genuine global capitalists who suffer from the irritation of cronyism at the highest level.
Please, PEPPER SPRAY ALL THE ATTENDEES OF DAVOS in order to halt the rape of taxpayers and consumers across the globe. This annual conclave is responsible for more wealth destruction and the widening disparity in GINI coefficients than any public policy. I believe that the cost of attending Davos is priced at such an extravagant rate because it is a giant insider scam. Hobnob with politicians and policy makers in an effort to be part of the “smart money” crowd. It was the great moral philosopher and economist Adam Smith who so presciently noted: “People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for the merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices.” The conspiracy against the public has been the financial repression of the global middle class in an effort to bail out those who have attached themselves to the public treasury to maintain the “animal spirits” of crony capitalism.
The cost of an entrance pass to this private/public congress of mover and shakers should sound an alarm to all those who desire transparency in financial markets. In contemporizing the words of Adam Smith, Samuel Huntington was credited in the online research cite, Acton Commentary, as creating the phrase DAVOS MAN: “A soulless man, technocratic, nationless and cultureless, severed from reality. The modern economics that undergirded Davos capitalism is equally soulless, a managerial capitalism that reduces economics to mathematics and separates it from human action and human creativity.”