Saturday, 19 November 2011

Never mind Bilderberg: fear the Vampire Squid!

There have long been conspiracy theories about the Bilderberg group. However, Paddy Ashdown put it in its proper perspective in his published diaries: He says: "There are a group of anti-European conspiracy theorists who persist in believing that the Bilderberg Conferences (which incidentally I attended with John Smith [the Labour leader before Neil Kinnock]) are a deep laid Euro-American plot to return to Hitler-type policies by
imposing an United States of Europe. All I can say is that the (only) one which I was invited to attend in May
1989 seemed to me to be totally harmless and conspiracy free - and if anything mildly boringly left-of-centre."

What people should genuinely be worried about, if this article in The Independent is accurate, is the influence that merchant bank Goldman Sachs (nicknamed "the vampire squid" on Wall St.) has in European chancellories. Stephen Foley writes that: "The bank's two dozen-strong international advisers act as informal lobbyists for Goldman's interests with the politicians that regulate its work." He lists Mario Monti, the newly-appointed prime minister of Italy; Otmar Issing, who, as a board member of the German Bundesbank and then the European Central Bank (ECB), was one of the architects of the euro; Peter Sutherland, attorney general of Ireland in the 1980s and a former EU Competition Commissioner; Mario Draghi, who took over as president of the ECB on 1 November; and Petros Christodoulou, head of Greece's debt management agency, as either advisers or former employees of Goldman Sachs. Additonally, Lucas Papademos, Greece's new "technocrat" head of government, was at the National Bank of Greece when Goldman Sachs arranged the iffy money transfers which hid Greece's real indebtedness and enabled the country to be accepted into the eurozone.

Goldman Sachs were treasury advisors to the Blair and Brown governments, and have presumably continued under the coalition.

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