This episode of The Invisible Hand features my recent interview with John David Van Hove, a.k.a. “Johnny Liberty.” Van Hove is an author, educator, researcher, business developer, and public speaker on many topics, including sovereignty, freedom, liberty, history, law, economics, money, leadership, and the true nature of power. He is also the founder of the Institute for Communications Resources, which aims at building local, regional, and global resource center networks that facilitate the emerging consciousness of sustainability and freedom. More information about that can be found at icresource.com. Mr. Van Hove is also the author of a notable work called The Global Sovereign’s Handbook, and also one of the co-founders of the Cascadia Hours alternative monetary exchange that we discussed a couple of weeks ago when I interviewed John Poling.
Liberty Cap Press will be facilitating a lecture by Van Hove called “A Vision for a New America”, which will take place on Friday, July 2nd at 7:30 PM at the Kenton Masonic Lodge in Portland, Oregon. Tickets are just $15, and those who purchase tickets online in advance will receive a free booklet written by me, Tracy R. Twyman, called Corporate Frankenstein, which I am personally offering as a free gift exclusively to these people. It’s a gesture on my part, and in no way means that John David Van Hove endorses anything that I’ve said in this essay. It’s just my own thoughts after conducting my own research. These booklets will be autographed and hand-numbered, and you’ll receive yours when you arrive at the venue.
Also, here are some of the news stories included in this edition of the podcast:
- Russian President Medvedev is once again pushing for a new global reserve currency, and he wants the Russian ruble to be a major part of the basket of currencies that backs it. As reported by Bloomberg News, Medvedev spoke to the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on June 18th, where he said: “Only three, five years ago it seemed like a fantasy to create a new reserve currency. Now we are seriously discussing it.” He said that talks with China on the subject are continuing as Russia also continues the process of divesting itself of US treasury bonds. The Russian President made headlines at a G20 meeting in 2009 when he presented the delegates with a sample gold coin that he proposed as the design for the new currency. Stamped upon it were the words: “Unity in Diversity: United Future World Currency.” Mevedev also told the audience in St. Petersberg that, “We really live at a unique time, and we should use it to build a modern, prosperous and strong Russia… that will be a co-founder of the new world economic order.”
- European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has warned that Spain, Greece and Portugal will fall into the hands of dictators, and that democracy will disappear, if they do not immediately implement the austerity measures recommended by the International Monetary Fund to tackle their debt problems. This, the Daily Mail reports, came out just as information was being leaked to the press about an EU bailout plan for Spain that will run into the hundreds of billions of Euros. The article pointed out that Spain and Portugal were ruled by dictatorships well into the 1970s, while Greece fell victim to a military coup in 1967 that ousted the monarch, Constantine II, and lasted until a democratic revolution in 1975. A colleague of Barroso’s, John Monks, told the Daily Mail that Barroso had said to him privately: “Look, if they do not carry out these austerity packages, these countries could virtually disappear in the way that we know them as democracies. They’ve got no choice, this is it.”
- US authorities want drones to fly over the skies of US cities, just like in Iraq and Afghanistan, and they’re pressuring the Federal Aviation Administration to approve it. The AP reported this week that the FAA has been asked by state police departments, local police departments, and Homeland Security to issue flying rights for unmanned aircraft for a wide range of uses, including law enforcement. The drones range in size from a small airliner to the size of a bird, capable of flying through a window. Police want to be able to use them to chase fleeing suspects, and to photograph speeding motorists. But the FAA has been reluctant to approve them so far due to concern about possible collisions and other safety hazards. Hank Krakowski, head of air traffic operations, is quote by the AP as saying: “There is a tremendous pressure … to fly unmanned aircraft… We are having constant conversations and discussions, particularly with the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security…”
- A letter sent from Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal to Defense Secretary Robert Gates and posted on the governor’s website reveals that the National Guard is preparing to evacuate the communities along the Gulf coast impacted by the oil leak. The letter reads: “Currently, our Soldiers and Airmen are staging for and are engaged in the planning of the effort to evacuate and provide security and clean up for the coastal communities expected to be impacted by the oil spill… I believe these National Guard operations are necessary and appropriate to protect this region of our nation from a significant national event with potential catastrophic loss of natural resources.” This threatens to become a repeat of some of the worst human rights abuses that occurred during Hurricane Katrina, when the National Guard forced thousands to evacuate at gunpoint, confiscating their weapons and insisting that they abandon their pets to starvation, and their property to looters. Hopefully that will not occur in this instance.
- The Department of the Interior is being accused of changing a report on recommendations made by scientific experts on offshore oil drilling from the National Academy of Engineering after obtaining their signatures on the document. McClatchy Newspapers reports that the original report recommended that new exploratory drilling at depths beyond 1000 feet should be temporarily halted for six months while further research on safety is conducted. However, the final document released by the Interior Department recommended that all new drills from floating rigs be banned for 6 months. Texas oil consultant Ken Allen told McClatchy that this may actually increase the probability of more spills, as companies will be working to obtain more oil from the existing wells and that this may lead to more risky practices.