Barclays Bank has been fined £290m for attempting to manipulate the world’s benchmarking borrowing rate in a blow to the bank’s reputation that has raised questions over the future of chief executive Bob Diamond.
By Harry Wilson, Banking correspondent
27 Jun 2012. Daily Telegraph.
The Financial Services Authority fined Barclays a record £60m, saying staff at the bank had repeatedly made false submissions to help set the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor). The rate is used to fix the cost of borrowing on mortgages, loans and derivatives worth more than $450 trillion (£288 trillion) globally.
Investigators from the FSA and the US Commodity Futures and Trading Commission said they had found evidence that Barclays had tried to manipulate Libor for several years in the run up to the financial crisis and in its aftermath.
Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond, and three of the bank’s senior managers including finance director Chris Lucas, said they would not take bonuses this year as a result of the regulator’s findings.
However, one major shareholder said the move was insufficient and claimed senior executives should be forced to resign.
“Taking off a couple of million from Bob’s bonus isn’t enough. People should be considering resignations. This has happened under the board’s nose. Where is the accountability?” he said.
Senior politicians joined in the attack, saying the manipulation of such an important borrowing measure was “inexcusable”.
“The price setting mechanism of Libor is crucial to the integrity of the markets. This appears to have been put at risk. From the information I have, it looks inexcusable,” said Andrew Tyrie, chairman of the Treasury Select Committee.
Mr Tyrie added that the committee would summon Mr Diamond to explain what had happened.
Lord Oakeshott, a former Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman, described the bank as “a casino that was rigging the wheels and loading the dice”. He added: “If Bob Diamond had a scintilla of shame, he would resign.”
Emails uncovered as part of a three-year investigation into claims that Barclays and other banks attempted to inflate and suppress Libor show the extent of the scandal.
In one message sent to a Barclays employee involved in the bank’s Libor submission, a trader asked for the rate to be set “as high as possible today”, to which the unnamed staff member replied “sure”.
In another, a trader from an unnamed rival bank thanks a Barclays trader for successfully getting the lender’s Libor rate lowered, saying: “Dude. I owe you big time! Come over one day after work and I’m opening a bottle of Bollinger.”
About a dozen banks are being investigated as part of the Libor probe, including state-backed lenders Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland, as well as many of the largest US and European investment banks.
“Although Barclays had particularly incriminating emails, this is by no means the end of the road on the Libor enquiry,” said Simon Hart, banking litigation partner at law firm RPC.
David Meister, director of enforcement at the CFTC, claimed the false submissions at Barclays were the direct result of “senior management orders”.
“When a bank acts in its own self-interest by attempting to manipulate these rates for profit, or by submitting false reports that result from senior management orders to lower submissions to guard the bank’s reputation, the integrity of benchmark interest rates is undermined,” said Mr Meister.
Barclays has already dismissed several staff over Libor manipulation and is in the process of firing others linked to the false submissions.
Mr Diamond apologised for the bank’s actions and said he was “sorry that some people acted in a manner not consistent with our culture and values”.
Marcus Agius, chairman of Barclays, said: “The board takes the issues underlying today’s announcement extremely seriously and views them with the utmost regret. Since these issues were identified, the authorities acknowledge that Barclays management has co-operated fully with their investigations and taken, and continues to take, prompt and decisive action to correct them.”
Despite the fines and the potential for further legal action, Barclays shares closed up marginally at the end of Wednesday’s trading session at 194.16p, up 0.91pc.
Martha Payne, who has featured on the news all over the world wanted to make a difference. Through her daily blog, which as we posted a few days ago was closed down by her local council because she was posting photo of her school meals, only to be reinstated after huge support,she decidedto try to raise money for a charity which works with local volunteers to help them provide meals in school for their children. The charity was founded in 2002 by Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, who lives near us in Argyll, Scotland. Now Mary’s Meals feeds over 600,000 children in 16 countries, including Malawi, Liberia, Kenya and Haiti.
As she herself said “When Mary’s Meals starts doing lunches in a new school they have to build a kitchen first. They cost £7000. I’d really like there to be a NeverSeconds kitchen but maybe it shouldn’t be called NeverSeconds because there will be seconds, for everyone!”
Through her viral website NeverSeconds, Martha has raised to date an incredible £108587.97 as I write this post, that’s over 15 kitchens.
Martha Payne, you are simply wonderful.
If you want to support her charity, click the link to NeverSeconds on the right.
TSA supervisor reveals how bosses told him to hire people with violent tendencies.
Paul Joseph Watson
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
A TSA supervisor turned whistleblower has revealed to the Alex Jones Show how the federal agency is deliberately directing its staff to hire people with criminal records who exhibit violent tendencies and psychopathic behaviour.
Explaining how his job involved filing reports on other TSA screeners who didn’t follow procedure, “Rob” expressed his alarm at the fact that criminals were being hired who exhibited the behavior of “psycopaths.”
“We have a program in the state of Rhode Island where we take prisoners who are out for non violent drug offenses and everything else – basically sociopaths – and we’re sending them to a ten day course and getting them out in uniform out checking people,” said the whistleblower.
Rob added that people who seemed professional were disregarded in favor of applicants who had criminal records and displayed a tendency for megalomania and power trip behavior.
“If they have a background and it’s something like violence or abusing authority we put them right in, we put them guys on the floor first day,” said Rob, adding he was also encouraged to hire Iraq war veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder.
“It’s all about the power trip, it’s all about having people bug their eyes out at the public and getting the public conditioned to the fact that the police state is coming,” he added, noting how TSA screeners were directed to stick their chests out and “eyeball people.”
As a recent report by Tennessee Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn highlighted, the fact that TSA agents are so routinely caught engaged in criminal behavior is by no means an aberration but stems “from TSA’s hiring practices and insufficient use of background checks.”
This includes the TSA’s recruitment policy which, instead of representing an “intelligent risk-based organization,” actually fails to conduct criminal and credit background checks on many of its employees while advertising “for employment at the Washington Reagan National Airport on pizza boxes and on advertisements above pumps at discount gas stations in the D.C. area.”
Last month it emerged that a Catholic priest who had been defrocked over allegations of child sex abuse was subsequetly hired by the TSA to work at Philadelphia International Airport.
Rob also divulged how TSA screeners were being ordered by their supervisors to check bags of people arriving at the airport who were merely there to pick up passengers, adding how he was directed to search a diaper bag belonging to a woman who had come to pick up her husband.
“We’re doing patrols in the parking lot with dogs, we’re even going as far out to the train station because the train station is connected to the airport here and we have guys walking around the train station, walking around the rental cars, we’re inspecting cars coming into the parking garage, I mean we’ve fully expanded – we’re no longer just at the gate and just at the security checkpoint,” he added.
Rob also explained how he was part of a coalition of TSA agents working at the airport in question who refused to grope passengers in certain areas, but that supervisors were firing those who took this stance.
During a subsequent private phone call with Alex Jones, the whistleblower said he had already been contacted by his bosses to be reprimanded over his on-air revelations. Given the fact that Rhode Island only has one major public airport, it’s easy to see how TSA superiors were able to discern Rob’s identity.
Who Are The TSA?
- John S. Pistole, Administrator
- Gale Rossides, Deputy Administrator
- Robert S. Bray, Assistant Administrator for Law Enforcement/Director of the Federal Air Marshal Service
- Sean J. Byrne, Assistant Administrator for Human Capital
- James G. Duncan, Assistant Administrator for Professional Responsibility
- Dr. Emma Garrison-Alexander, Assistant Administrator for Information Technology
- Howard Goldman, Senior Counselor and Director for Policy Coordination and Intergovernmental Affairs
- John W. Halinski, Assistant Administrator for Global Strategies
- Kelly Hoggan, Assistant Administrator for Office of Security Capabilities
- K. David Holmes, Jr., Assistant Administrator for Inspection
- Francine Kerner, Chief Counsel
- Christopher L. McLaughlin, Assistant Administrator for Security Operations
- David Nicholson, Assistant Administrator for Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer
- Michael R. Novak, Assistant Administrator for Training and Workforce Engagement
- Stephen Sadler, Assistant Administrator for Intelligence and Analysis
- John P. Sammon, Assistant Administrator for Transportation Sector Network Management
- Karen Shelton Waters, Assistant Administrator for Office of Acquisition
- Kimberly Walton, Assistant Administrator for Civil Rights & Liberties, Ombudsman, and Travel Engagement
It’s time you start getting in their face people of America!
200,000 casket linings on standby says undercover journalist who infiltrated security team
Paul Joseph Watson
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
An undercover journalist going by the pseudonym ‘Lee Hazledean’ has blown the whistle on astounding revelations about how he infiltrated the G4S – the company responsible for security at the London Olympics – and discovered shocking plans for the evacuation of London, 200,000 ‘casket linings’ being on standby, along with botched security procedures that leave the Games wide open to attack.
Hazledean’s interview with Tony Gosling, Bilderberg.org editor and host of BCFM’s Friday Drivetime, has gone viral on the web over the last few days. Hazledean is an undercover journalist for a television program in London and has worked with news agencies on hard-hitting subjects, but when he approached the mainstream media with his bombshell story, they showed no interest.
When Hazledean asked Channel 4 News Home Affairs Correspondent Andy Davies if he would run the story, Davies said he wasn’t interested and days later Channel 4 ran a puff piece about G4S which portrayed the organization as competent and trustworthy.
“I sent him an email, I called, he wasn’t interested and he said there’s a media blackout on this kind of story, that nobody would be interested in running it,” said Hazledean.
In the interview, Hazledean divulges how he merely had to fill in an application form to get a job with G4S, the private company providing security for the Olympics, that he underwent no background check whatsoever, and that his personal references were not checked.
Employees are given just two days of training to run airport-style security checkpoints which include body scanners, which Hazledean said “would be turned off completely” at peak times, meaning terrorists could just walk straight into the event with ammunition or explosives and have an excellent chance of remaining undetected.
“In fact, I was asked to be a would-be terrorist on the final training day and I was given a knife, a gun and an IED, and on all three occasions throughout the day I got through the metal detector and I also got through the x-ray machine scanner,” said Hazledean, adding that terrorists could quite easily stage a “massacre” given the lax nature of the security.
“They’re not training them properly…it’s quite open to a terrorist attack very easily and I don’t say that lightly,” said Hazledean, adding that he witnessed G4S members doing drug deals while training classes were taking place, while others were taking surveillance photos on their cellphones of supposedly secure areas. Hazledean said a lot of the security staff were poorly qualified and that many of them could barely speak English.
Hazledean also revealed how the large contingent of soldiers being brought into London for the Olympic Games included “a lot of UN troops being posted in and around London,” including American and German troops.
The whistleblower also revealed how unauthorized personnel were being handed G4S uniforms and that uniforms had been stolen.
Hazledean’s most chilling revelation was how he learned about preparations to evacuate London and how, “The security guards used for the Olympics will be at the forefront of getting the public out of London.”
“They seem quite serious about it, they’ve spent a lot of time on this,” said Hazledean, noting how G4S spent two hours talking about the evacuation of London in comparison to just half an hour talking about security screening procedures for the Olympics itself.
The whistleblower also noted how the 100,000 plus troops that would be stationed in London during the Olympics would be enough to carry out such a large scale evacuation.
Another chilling facet Hazledean learned was that 200,000 casket linings (temporary coffins) were being shipped in to London that can hold four bodies each. The whistleblower expressed his amazement at why security guards working on mundane screening procedures would need to be told such information.
The whistleblower also revealed how he was told Predator drones would be circling London in readiness for terrorist attacks, and that G4S employees were shown a video of a drone killing a group of people in Afghanistan.
Hazledean noted how G4S leaders saw the public as “the scum of the earth” and also told their employees that the police had no authority over them. He also related how one of the leaders told him that an event after the Olympics would be a “defining moment” for London but when pressed, refused to divulge what she meant.
Hazledean is not the first to blow the whistle on G4S. Earlier this month, data input clerk Sarah Hubble revealed that she was fired by G4S after complaining that G4S was cutting corners in their security preparations for the Olympics and that she herself had not been vetted.
Speaking with Infowars, Hazledean said that he had been making contingency plans for if his life was put in danger or if he became a target for the authorities in any other way after blowing the whistle on the scandal.
Asked about a meme circulating the web that conspiracy theories about a false flag attack occurring at the London Olympics are being deliberately allowed to proliferate in order to make ‘truthers’ look paranoid after nothing happens, Hazledean stressed that merely getting the story out was necessary as it could derail any planned attack.
The Titanics of 2012
The Titanic tragedy has spawned a lot of metaphors for essays and cartoons alike. I decided to draw one myself to illustrate multiple situations that are steaming toward tragedy and since one ship wasn’t enough, I drew many. They all seem intent on striking that iceberg.
1. Debt. Our debt money system benefits only a few bankers at the top. Everyone else gets poor and suffers higher taxes, lost pensions and austerity as a result. The banker-owned MSM is painting austerity as a good thing-of course!
2. Euro. This will be the first to collapse, but our dollar will be next. The banker ‘technocrats’ will undoubtedly steer the money system to a form of digital money. Everyone will be on the grid. No more paper money. If you disagree with the banker police state, they will turn off your credits and access to money and jobs.
3. More war. The bankers want to take down all countries that aren’t going along. That is why Libya was taken down. It’s why Iran is next. It’s all about resources and money-and the elite bankers want it all concentrated under their control.
6. False Flag Event. To be used to help get Obama re-elected.
7. Quadrillions in derivatives. A bomb waiting to go off. The gambling elite banks will survive-they’re still ‘too big to fail.’ The 1 percent will survive. The 99 percent may not.
8. Globalism. This is the reason behind the bogus climate change propaganda. Pay a carbon slave tax to the bankers so they can ’round us up and micromanage our every move using a high-tech police state. Collectivism is always bad for those being collectivized.
On the Thursday, June 21 edition of the Alex Jones Show, Alex talks with David Icke. David is a former BBC television sports presenter and spokesman for the Green Party. He is the author of 19 books, including Remember Who You Are: Remember ‘Where’ You Are and Where You ‘Come’ from, Human Race Get Off Your Knees: The Lion Sleeps No More and And the Truth Shall Set You Free: The 21st Century Edition.