The above screencap comes from a February 18, 2008 article at FT.com (here: http://www.ft.com/…fd2ac.html ) and it reports on some seriously scary stuff--at least, in my uneducated opinion. All I've done to educate myself is read some stuff on the 'net and swing by the Fed website a few years back to try to make sense of things. Their FAQ these days is a bit more thorough, but clear answers are still not easy to come by. So, us uneducated types have to pay special attention to what reporters say about the central bank of the United States.



From the quote in the last paragraph in the screencap above, to me, it looks like we're having a replay of the sub-prime mortgage mess. Instead of people unable to pay their loans back we've got banks using "garbage collateral nobody else wants to take."



The FT article also gives us an interesting glimpse into how our money works: "The Fed announced the TAF tool on December 12 as part of a co-ordinated package of measures unveiled by leading western central banks to calm money markets.



The measure marks a distinct break from past US policy. Before its introduction, banks either had to raise money in the open market or use the so-called %u201Cdiscount window%u201D for emergencies. However, last year many banks refused to use the discount window, even though they found it hard to raise funds in the market, because it was associated with the stigma of bank failure."



Up until I did that wave of research a few years back, I had no clear idea where our money comes from. When I was a little kid I remember asking my dad about it. He told me it was printed. I asked him if that was all there was to it, how come we can't just print more?



Then he explained to me how inflation works. The more money that exists, the less it's all worth. A few years back I learned that the Fed, as a central bank, is the source of *all* of our money and that they loan money to all banks at interest. This is confirmed in the above quote from the article. Money is definitely borrowed on interest because there is a metaphorical window you can get money from at a discount price.



The thing is, to pay it back plus interest, don't we have to have more money than we started with? Where does that money come from if *all* money is borrowed?



To me our economy already seems like a huge Uroborus (http://en.wikipedia.org/…/Ouroboros ) that will inevitably, eventually collapse in on itself.



It also seems to me that we may be seeing the collapse begin--though it might be a while before it finishes.



Am I overreacting? Possibly--we survived the Great Depression, after all.



Still, I'd rather say something and be wrong than be right and silent.
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