the tower of Basel

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the tower of Basel

Postby smiths » Mon Jul 13, 2009 3:25 am

the canadian william white has retired from the Bank for International Settlements,
since speigel wrote this bullshit article about him i thought i might as well chuck in some extra stuff for anyone who doesnt know about the BIS ...


The BIS is a closed organization owned by the 55 central banks.
The heads of these central banks travel to the Basel headquarters once every two months, and the General Meeting, the BIS's supreme executive body, takes place once a year.
The central bankers -- from Alan Greenspan and his successor Ben Bernanke, to German Bundesbank President Axel Weber and Jean-Claude Trichet, the head of the European Central Bank (ECB) -- are fond of the Basel meetings.
When they arrive, the BIS's dark office building at Centralbahnhof 2 in Basel suddenly comes alive. Secretaries inhabit the otherwise deserted offices of the governors, stenographers and chauffeurs stand at the ready and dark limousines wait outside.

The penthouse at the top of the building, with its magnificent view of Basel, is decorated for the annual dinner, the nuclear shelter in the basement is swept out and the wine cellar is restocked with the best wines. At the BIS's private country club, gardeners prepare the tennis courts as if a Grand Slam tournament were about to be held there. The losers of matches can find comfort in the clubhouse, where the Indonesian guest chef serves up Asian delicacies à la carte.

"Central bankers can sometimes be prima donnas," says former BIS Secretary General Gunter Baer. He remembers the commotion that erupted at one of the annual events when it became known that a certain vintage of Mouton Rothschild was unavailable.

The corridors of the BIS headquarters buildings are lined with retro white leather chairs and sofas from the 1970s. The round table where the delegates address the problems of the global economy is polished to a high gloss. But the most impressive space of all is the auditorium, with its modern armchairs in white leather and chrome, the thousands of tiny LED lights, the booths in the back where the interpreters sit behind one-way glass, and the console where the financial masters of the world do their work, centrally positioned at the front of the room. The room is evocative of the control room in "Star Trek." It was supposed to be the hub from which the financial world was to be guided through every possible hazard.

Naturally, the building is largely bugproof, the goal being to prevent anything from leaking to the outside and any unauthorized individuals from penetrating into its interior. There are no public minutes of the meetings. Everything that is discussed there is confidential. The word transparency is unknown at the BIS, where nothing is considered more despicable than an indiscreet central banker.

Central bankers, proud of their independence, are intent on holding themselves above all partisan influences while taking all necessary measures to keep the global economy healthy.

These traits make the BIS one of the world's most exclusive and influential clubs, a sort of Vatican of high finance. Formally registered as a stock corporation, it is recognized as an international organization and, therefore, is not subject to any jurisdiction other than international law.

It does not need to pay tax, and its members and employees enjoy extensive immunity. No other institution regulates the BIS, despite the fact that it manages about 4 percent of the world's total currency reserves, or €217 trillion ($304 trillion), as well as 120 tons of gold.

"Our strength is that we have no power," says BIS Secretary General Peter Dittus. "Our meetings are generally not oriented toward decision-making. Instead, their value consists in the exchange of views." There are no across-the-board agreements on the order of: "Let's raise the prime rate by a point." Opinions take shape in a much more subtle fashion, through something resembling osmosis.

Central bankers are not elected by the people but are appointed by their governments. Nevertheless, they wield power that exceeds that of many political leaders. Their decisions affect entire economies, and a single word from their lips is capable of moving financial markets. They set interest rates, thereby determining the cost of borrowing and the speed of global financial currents.


http://www.spiegel.de/international/bus ... -2,00.html


Even though the BIS is the oldest international banking operation in the world, it is a low profile organization, shunning all publicity and notoriety. As a result, there is very little critical analysis written about this important financial organization. Further, much of what has been written about it is tainted by its own self-effacing literature ...

In 1924 the Allies appointed a committee of international bankers, led by Charles G. Dawes (and accompanied by J.P. Morgan agent, Owen Young), to develop a plan to get reparations payments back on track. Historian Carroll Quigley noted that the Dawes Plan was "largely a J.P. Morgan production"1 The plan called for $800 million in foreign loans to be arranged for Germany in order to rebuild its economy.

In 1924, Dawes was chairman of the Allied Committee of Experts, hence, the "Dawes Plan." He was replaced as chairman by Owen Young in 1929, with direct support by J.P. Morgan. The "Young Plan" of 1928 put more teeth into the Dawes Plan, which many viewed as a strategy to subvert virtually all German assets to back a huge mortgage held by the United States bankers.

Neither Dawes nor Young represented anything more than banking interests. After all, WWI was fought by governments using borrowed money made possible by the international banking community. The banks had a vested interest in having those loans repaid!

In 1924, the president of Reichsbank (Germany's central bank at that time) was Hjalmar Schacht. He had already had a prominent role in creating the Dawes Plan, along with German industrialist Fritz Thyssen and other prominent German bankers and industrialists.

The Young Plan was so odious to the Germans that many credit it as a precondition to Hitler's rise to power. Fritz Thyssen, a leading Nazi Industrialist, stated

"I turned to the National socialist party only after I became convinced that the fight against the Young Plan was unavoidable if complete collapse of Germany was to be prevented." 2

Some historians too quickly credit Owen Young as the idea-man for the Bank for International Settlements. It was actually Hjalmar Schacht who first proposed the idea3, which was then carried forward by the same group of international bankers who brought us the Dawes and Young Plans.

It is not necessary to jump to conclusions as to the intent of these elite bankers, so we will instead defer to the insight of renowned Georgetown historian, Carroll Quigley:
"The Power of financial capitalism had another far reaching plan, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalistic fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the system was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basle, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks, which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank, in the hands of men like Montagu Norman of the Bank of England, Benjamin Strong of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, Charles Rist of the Bank of France, and Hjalmar Schacht of the Reichsbank, sought to dominate its government by its ability to control treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence co-operative politicians by subsequent rewards in the business world."4

As we will see, German reparation payments (or lack thereof) had little to do with the founding of the BIS, although this is the weak explanation given since its founding. Of course, Germany would make a single payment to the BIS, which in turn would deposit the funds into the respective central bank accounts of the nations to whom payments were due. (It would be the subject of another paper to show the shallowness of this operation: Money and gold were shuffled around, but the net amount that Germany actually paid was very small.)

The original founding documents of the BIS have little to say about Germany, however, and we can look directly to the BIS itself to see its original purpose:

“The objects of the Bank are: to promote the co-operation of central banks and to provide additional facilities for international operations; and to act as trustees or agent in regard to international financial settlements entrusted to it under agreements with the parties concerned.” 6

According to James C. Baker, pro-BIS author of The Bank for International Settlements: Evolution and Evaluation, "The BIS was formed with funding by the central banks of six nations, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom. In addition, three private international banks from the United States also assisted in financing the establishment of the BIS."7

Each nation's central bank subscribed to 16,000 shares. The U.S. central bank, the Federal Reserve, did not join the BIS, but the three U.S. banks that participated got 16,000 shares each. Thus, U.S. representation at the BIS was three times that of any other nation. Who were these private banks? Not surprisingly, they were J.P. Morgan & Company, First National Bank of New York and First National Bank of Chicago.

On January 8, 2001, an Extraordinary General Meeting of the BIS approved a proposal that restricted ownership of BIS shares to central banks. Some 13.7% of all shares were in private hands at that time, and the repurchase was accomplished with a cash outlay of $724,956,050. The price of $10,000 per share was over twice the book value of $4,850.

It is not certain what the repurchase accomplished. The BIS claimed that it was to correct a conflict of interest between private shareholders and BIS goals, but it offered no specifics. It was not a voting issue, however, because private owners were not allowed to vote their shares.8

It is not surprising that the BIS, its offices, employees, directors and members share an incredible immunity from virtually all regulation, scrutiny and accountability.
A quick summary of their immunity, explained further below, includes

* diplomatic immunity for persons and what they carry with them (i.e., diplomatic pouches)
* no taxation on any transactions, including salaries paid to employees
* embassy-type immunity for all buildings and/or offices operated by the BIS
* no oversight or knowledge of operations by any government authority
* freedom from immigration restrictions
* freedom to encrypt any and all communications of any sort
* freedom from any legal jurisdiction9

Further, members of the BIS board of directors (for instance, Alan Greenspan) are individually granted special benefits:

* “immunity from arrest or imprisonment and immunity from seizure of their personal baggage, save in flagrant cases of criminal offence;”
* “inviolability of all papers and documents;”
* “immunity from jurisdiction, even after their mission has been accomplished, for acts carried out in the discharge of their duties, including words spoken and writings;”
* “exemption for themselves, their spouses and children from any immigration restrictions, from any formalities concerning the registration of aliens and from any obligations relating to national service in Switzerland ;”
* “the right to use codes in official communications or to receive or send documents or correspondence by means of couriers or diplomatic bags.”10

Lastly, all remaining officials and employees of the BIS have the following immunities:

* “immunity from jurisdiction for acts accomplished in the discharge of their duties, including words spoken and writings, even after such persons have ceased to be Officials of the Bank;”[bold emphasis added]
* “exemption from all Federal, cantonal and communal taxes on salaries, fees and allowances paid to them by the Bank…”
* exempt from Swiss national obligations, freedom for spouses and family members from immigration restrictions, transfer assets and properties – including internationally – with the same degree of benefit as Officials of other international organizations.11


On February 10, 1987, a more formal acknowledgement called the "Headquarters Agreement" was executed between the BIS and the Swiss Federal Council and basically clarified and reiterated what we already knew:

Article 2
Inviolability

* The buildings or parts of buildings and surrounding land which, whoever may be the owner thereof, are used for the purposes of the Bank shall be inviolable. No agent of the Swiss public authorities may enter therein without the express consent of the Bank. Only the President, the General Manager of the Bank, or their duly authorised representative shall be competent to waive such inviolability.
* The archives of the Bank and, in general, all documents and any data media belonging to the Bank or in its possession, shall be inviolable at all times and in all places.
* The Bank shall exercise supervision of and police power over its premises.

Article 4
Immunity from jurisdiction and execution

* The Bank shall enjoy immunity from criminal and administrative jurisdiction, save to the extent that such immunity is formally waived in individual cases by the President, the General Manager of the Bank, or their duly authorised representative.
* The assets of the Bank may be subject to measures of compulsory execution for enforcing monetary claims. On the other hand, all deposits entrusted to the Bank, all claims against the Bank and the shares issued by the Bank shall, without the prior agreement of the Bank, be immune from seizure or other measures of compulsory execution and sequestration, particularly of attachment within the meaning of Swiss law. 12

As you can see, the BIS, its directors and employees (past and present) can do virtually anything and everything they want, with complete secrecy, immunity and with no one looking over their shoulders. It was truly a banker's dream come true, and it paved the international freeway for the rampant financial globalism that we see manifest today.


http://www.augustreview.com/issues/glob ... 200510147/
the question is why, who, why, what, why, when, why and why again?
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