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Hidden order

Being on the Cobden Centre email list is a constant source of interesting news items and opinions, in addition to all the stuff that is none of your business and not really any of mine.

Today, for instance, someone provided a link to this blog posting, which is entitled “CRASH 2: Why has the Treasury revoked debt-trading sections of a 1939 Act – without telling Parliament?” and is subtitled “How a hidden order could be used to bankrupt the UK”. Quote:

A few diligent MPs (David Davis is one, Frank Field another) often scan the SI lists looking for things like the reintroduction of chimney sweeps, incarceration of Tom Watson, invasion of the Planet Mars and so forth. Most of the other 618 (or so … I can’t remember these days) never bother. Everybody seems to have missed – or is happy to keep quiet about – a brand new one. A week ago today, the Coalition Government told us all very quietly indeed that it was going to revoke some parts of an ageing schedule from The Trading with the Enemy Act of September 5th 1939. The latter was passed two days after the Germans last went visiting their neighbours.

The gist of this particular quiet little alteration being that it just got easier for Britain to bale out the banks of various other countries which are now part of the EU. It’s all to do with “negotiable instruments”.

In response, someone else on the Cobden Centre list sent the text of a Reuters story, which I found in a linkable form here. Quote:

BRUSSELS/LONDON: European Union countries could be obliged to bail out one another’s struggling banks, according to a draft EU law that marks a big step towards greater EU financial integration likely to upset some members, particularly Germany.

And not only Germany, it would seem.

As to whether the story behind link number one really is link number two, I don’t know. But I have long believed that the European Union, when it finally collapses, will do so all at once. All the power and all the money that these fanatics have under their control will all be used up, all of it, to sustain the illusion that they are all now so determined to sustain. And then all the power and all the money will be gone, and everything will very suddenly disintegrate. At which point it will emerge that everyone was only obeying orders.

9 comments to Hidden order

  • Andrew Duffin

    “and everything will very suddenly disintegrate”

    Please, oh please.

  • Be careful what you wish for. A lot of people with no jobs and no welfare payments, and nothing left to be stolen from them, all angry with the universe for shafting them. The EU will be over, but the grief will only have begun.

    From what I hear, the big cities of Spain are about to give us a little taste of all this.

  • Paul Marks

    Sadly one does not need to scan the Statutory Instruments of the “liberal” elite concerning endless bailouts (and so on) their intentions are printed in the vile Economist magazine every week. Talk of free markets (and freedom generally) before “regretfully concluding” that yet more statism (yet more bailouts, yet more “quantative easing”, yet more regulations and centralization of powers in the European Union and other international entities) is required.

    Of course a Conservative (let alone a libertarian) would reject the desires of the “liberal” elite – but Mr Cameron is clearly not a Conservative. He cares nothing for national independence or for individual freedom – after all Mr Cameron believes that Cass Sustein’s “Nudge” is not a warning of the totalitarian mind manipualtion desires of the elite – no, it is guide to be followed.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes Brian – this (demented) system will collapse, but the collapse will be terrible.

    Many times the elite have faced a choice – let their dream of power go, or prolong it (at the expense of making the final collapse worse).

    And each time they have chosen to cling on to power – even though they only way to do that was to “double down” on their bailouts and general statism, which would lead to the final collapse being vastly worse than it otherwise would have been.

    I have watched them on television, and (even more clearly) read them making this choice (again and again) in the pages of their house journal the Economist magazine (which is why I bang on about it).

    Each time they have chosen to cling on to power (to their positions in the political, financial and cultural worlds) at the expense of making the final collapse worse and worse.

    Curse them.

    Curse them to the lowest level of Hell.

    And may they burn there for all eternity.

  • Mutimonkee

    Cass Sustein’s “Nudge” is not a warning of the totalitarian mind manipualtion desires of the elite

    Was it really as bad as us classical liberals/libertarians make it out?

    I mean the basic premise is:

    1)if you open a current account, they automatically set up a savings account and transfer 10 % of your pay check in every month.

    2)If you don’t want that you can cancel it
    and spend the money each month

    I really can’t see the issue with the idea. Spiked-online bang on about it alot but I’ve never seen a solid classical liberal argument against it.

    Its definately reflective of the desires of the bourgeoisie but completely harmless.

    I smoke lots of class A drugs, drink a gallon of booze a day, only eat BBQ’d red meat and chips and don’t save a penny each month. That’s my choice but what’s the harm in someone suggesting I don’t?

    Its a lot better than using tax to coerse my behaviour. Essentially with the “Nudge” idea it still lets me carry on what I’m doing if I really have decided thats what i want, its just a bit more effort to do it.

    If Obama or Cameron actually tried “Nudging” I’d be fairly supportive but all they’ve done is try to use sin taxes and traditional illiberal methods of social control.

  • Paul Marks

    Is “Nudge” really as bad as Classical Liberals and Libertarians say it is?

    Yes it is.

    And perhaps one of its worst features is its air of “resonableness” – use of language such as “libertarian perternalism”. The whole we are not going to send you to a death camp – we do not have to, we have studied the human brain and if we do…… you are likely to do……

    The only useful thing about this vile work is the fact that it flushes out statists.

    For example, the “apoltiical” author of “Freakonamics” actually wrote a forward for “Nudge” – he showed what he really is (a swine).

    And look where Cass Sustein ended up – regulation Commissar for Comrade Barack.

    And his wife (S. Power – the “Responsibility to Protect” Soros lady) – surprise, surprise, this person is now a high up in the Administration also.

    Choice (thought) manipulation, the totalitarian iron fist in a velvet glove.

    But make no mistake – they are prepared to take the glove off.

    For those for whom a “nudge” does not work, “nudge” will turn into “shove”.

    And shove will turn into shoot.

  • MutiMonkee


    Meaning no disprespect, none of those points are actually critiques of what is written in the book. Just what the people who wrote it have ended up doing.

    I did say that all we’ve seen from the people who supported it (ie Obama and Cameron) since coming to power are shoves (as you correctly observed). I can’t think of a single policy similar to what is proposed in the book. If I weren’t an infant at the time I might have been disapointed by Thatcher and Reagan who talked of Austrain economics, but at least they did make moves towards the theory. The current leadership of the US and UK havn’t done anything resembling what was proposed in that particular book.

    You also seem to have missed the point that behavioural economics is probably more applicable to the private sector.

    Banks would actually prefer clients to save each month (my earlier example),

    Companies that pay for health insurance would prefer its employee’s eat the healthier food at the work canteen as it will lower costs in the long run.

    Is this acceptable when done by the private sector?

    I’m a classical liberal so to me their are obviously sawthes of government and legislation that shouldn’t exist. However I don’t see how the theories proposed could make those areas of government any worse or more illiberal.

    I would like to be enlightened!

  • Paul Marks


    I repeat what I have already said.

  • Paul Marks

    Still you ask a specific question and deserve a specific reply.

    Is it acceptable that a private company makes it a condition of employment for employees to eat only “healthy” meals at the company canteen.

    Yes it is.

    Just as it is acceptable for an employee of such a company to quit and go work somewhere else (or start up his own enterprise).

    And is it acceptable for government to use taxes and regulations to try and manipulate human choices concerning food, electerical power use and so on?

    No it is not.

    Government and civil society (private property) are different things.

    And the project is open ended (as can be seen from the discussion of the human brain and so on).

    Which is what makes Dr Sunstein’s use of the word “libertarian” (in “libertarian paternalism”) particularly offensive.