tv The Big Picture RT September 27, 2019 11:00pm-11:31pm EDT
yes democratic house committee says she subpoenas to secretary of state. seeking to compel him to hand over documents concerning the trumpet ministrations contacts with ukrainian gov. the west is failing to admit the loss of its dominance in world affairs that is the message russia's foreign minister had for delegates in his address to the un in new york. and rights campaigners accuse the u.k. government of failing in its commitment to protect young girls from female genital mutilation after britain's high court accepted it was powerless to prevent the deportation of a 10 year old risk of being forced to undergo the procedure. can visit our tea dot com for more on those and other headlines now it is the latest in politics and more
on the big picture coming up next. on this week's show let me tell you about the birds and the bees they are disappearing why and why that's not good also this half hour when the facts of life aren't obvious to government leaders citizen diplomats personal fear despite our leaders but 1st we shop til we drop even as the american middle class is drowning in debt i'm hala cook in washington for the next half hour it's an impeachment free zone this is the big picture america. while president trump crows about a booming economy the american middle class is. browning in debt not including
mortgages we owe 4 t. trillion $1.12 zeros a trillion and a half in student loan debt haunts many people well into middle age car loans average over $32000.00 now and a 3rd of new car buyers roll in the remaining balance from the last car alone with low unemployment consumer confidence is confident and the president nags the federal reserve to lower interest rates even more how did we get here and how risky is this economic sugar high let's ask the author of among other books debt the 1st 5000 years also available as an auto bull audio book david graber is a professor of anthropology at the london school of economics and he joins us from our london bureau so there may be a slight delay as we converse david i saw you speak about the history of debt and
you said that in sanskrit death and guilt are the same thing have we sinned our way and debt quicksand. well if you read the bible and actually it says dead in the center of the same thing but also in a lot of it then it's it doesn't really mean it ultimately what's truly divine is not paying your debts but forgiving debts and they're constantly talking about the need to cancel debts forgive debts all throughout ancient history most revolutionary movements were about cancellation of tatts and even a lot of religions use forgiveness of debt as their metaphor for redemption which is actually that's what that literally means data from the bureau of economic analysts show that the u.s. economy roughly doubled from 1989 through 2016 but gains skew. to higher and earners david doesn't history warn against
a wide gulf between the haves and have nots. generally speaking yes i mean what we have in our country is less and less looking like capitalism as they tell us it's supposed to work and a lot more like something like feudalism now we have a tiny percent of the population that has all the wealth and people are just literally giving them money they're extracting money from them directly i mean they taught me in school that you know when they hire you to work for you that's called countable ism when they just take your money that's called feudalism well that's the way our system seems to be working you have a tiny percentage of people who control the actual financial securities and basically. get the benefits from economic growth and. at the same time the profits from from most companies are no longer from
making or selling anything they're from finance i mean even car companies their profits increasingly come from their financial operations and not from making cars so so a majority of the profits of wall street wall street firms of those through the city of london this is true all over the world increasingly come from actual financial operations all finance is just another word for other people's pets essentially their extracting money from us directly i've actually tried to figure this out i've asked a whole bunch of different economists what percentage of the average americans household income goes directly to the fire section sector to finance insurance and real estate so much as take it out in mortgage payments were. rent to pay millions more in payments for student loans cars credit cards so forth and so on you take all of that together. what is that what percentage of your income and nobody knows i mean they keep statistics on almost anything else and the reason to come by and i
think it's telling that's the one number we don't have i seen estimates anywhere between 10 to 15 percent is taken directly from us and that's most of the profits that wall street is dealing and now that resembles a feudal system now on the consumer level we used to get our music from vinyl and we had been getting our debt from plastic but now digital technology is obsoleting their credit card itself as it did with hard copy music does this friction free crypto cultural mindset doom us to untenable debt or are we already there. actually this is actually quite interesting when i started doing my historical research what i discovered is we had this idea that you know money was a physical thing originally it was stuff you know it was gold and silver and then they come up with paper money in. and gradually a deed materializes they are so that you know we start with barter directly just
trading stuff then you go on to money and then eventually you get credit in these more and more complicated now abstract financial instruments and it's an extremely busy not what happened at all if you look at history of money credit money the kind we're using now is sort of bookkeeping money is the original form of money actual coin it's kind of thousands of years later actually so so the story we told isn't really ed credit money has been actually the dominant form money and not just an early empires but in the middle ages as well in many periods of history the thinking is that when you do go to a credit system yes you have a problem which is that the people who can create credit well what's what's to stop them from creating as much credit as they possibly want to and basically ending up owning anything which is kind of what's starting to happen right so if you look throughout history every period. where they had virtual credit money is the dominant form of money and there might be ancient sume or it could be medieval
china or india or even medieval europe for that matter they always had some mechanism to keep that from getting out of hand to make sure the people have the means of credit creation don't end up effectively insulating everybody else there's different ways to do it want to simply do it periodic debt cancelations which is what they did in the middle east of if you read the bible there was a jubilee year every 749 years depending on how you read the tax they would simply cancel all debts and start over again or often they would cancel consumer debts and commercial that should be left in place they'd usually have some mechanism to make sure it didn't have too much economic disruption in the middle ages of course there were bans on usury so you simply couldn't charge interest on debt throughout much of the world there's all these 'd different ways to do it but you have to have some kind of mechanism to protect debtors against creditors if you go to a virtual credit money system the problem is we're moving back to a virtual credit money system since from 1971 when nixon went off the gold standard
you know been drifting more and more in that direction with increasing repetitive. but rather than creating mechanisms to protect debtors from creditors they did exactly the opposite you had this endless legislation and creation of institutions internationally like the i amassed locally. like the various legal systems bankruptcy laws became much more harsh during this period to protect. predators against others well the result is obvious you have a tiny percentage of the population increasingly owning everything and you have ordinary people more and more deeply in debt we're talking with david graber from the london school of economics wide angle shot over a quarter of some $22.00 trillion dollars in us a national debt is held by china a currency manipulator with whom our trade relationship is addictive and troubled how do i call sam's spendthrift ways trickle down to that stack of bills our
viewers have on the kitchen table. well that's very very complicated because you have to bear in mind that for much of the history of these since world war 2 america basically took over from england as a sort of. dominant power both militarily and financially and world. during a lot of that period the financial architecture was set up in such a way that american treasury bonds in this for debt system we created was a way of sucking money into america essentially america american military was position certain countries in those countries bought huge amounts of treasury bonds west germany for example which had. all these american military bases protecting them during the cold war also bought up all these treasury bonds that lost money other major buyers of bonds were taiwan south korea the gulf states basically they paid for the american military that protected them by doing this and this our financial architecture still exists those treasury bonds are rolled over the people
who hold them lose money off the deal so the question is why is china buying up all . that's odd because china obviously is our major our u.s. is major geographical rival. political rival well they're playing a very very complicated game of creating actual dependency. but it's a long term game for. i think robert cords of the way that china has conducted itself as an imperial power for thousands of years they have tended to go off for a really really sweet deal to people surrounding them to sort of draw them into a relation of economic dependence sure sure in exchange for political loyalty yeah well they did it to the northern burberry's they did it to countries like i want to korea they've done that for years and if they dump that debt we have a situation on our hands david graber from the london school of economics thank you for your context and perspective on this important story and for joining us on the
big picture. coming up with world leaders staring each other down citizen to citizen diplomacy persists on daunted and why are birds and insects vanishing and why it really matters this is the big picture on our team america. that's geysers financial life they say money the girl is. going to take it easy this is a central plank support diet pill means good common right now so you stop to.
this is a story about what happens auster a stray bullet kills a young girl in the streets. what happens to her family and daughters in florida the mother daughter is buried in a cemetery meaning this is with your head what happens to the community the public was screaming for a scapegoat the police needed a scapegoat so why not choose a 19 year old black kid with a criminal record who better to pin this on than him and what happens in court. shot shot as far. as i feel. we don't know this is true. and in this unfortunately you. will still not know still just.
it's always only been a matter of time impeachment has always been on the agenda settling on the issue and process with the sticking points the democrats and the liberal media aim to remove trumper mommas over a telephone call to the ukrainian president what could possibly go wrong. while world leaders arm wrestle over trade issues and risk accidental war in the gulf and elsewhere undaunted citizen diplomats aim to convince government leaders that there's a better way than escalating military and economic confrontation but our government isn't making it easy why is that. let's ask well traveled activist and code pink
founder medea benjamin i understand from your traveling companion and write that as you and she returned from a trip to iran earlier this year your warm welcome at dulles airport here included the f.b.i. what did they ask you well that was very funny because they you know you go through secondary screening and then there's somebody else waiting for you and they were very nice and asked us a lot about what we did or who we met with but then they had a packet for us and it was all full of information including how we could apply to be a registered foreign agent for the iranian government and i said i don't think i want to do that i was actually just going to meet iranian people just like we go all over the world to meet people and talk to them both people and people kind of diplomatic delegations as well as just general travel to know what other countries are like a pal of mine went to work cuba on one of these people that people exchanges and
they were all pretending to be photographers you need some excuse to go and it's a shame that things have chilled under president trump after they thought a bit under president obama you're headed for cuba how tricky is a u.s. citizen there well it's actually not very hard and let's make it clear to your audience that this is a u.s. restrictions not cuba sure. and you can still go but they've made it more difficult so you have to go as education you can't go like canadians or everyone else around the world to go lie on the beach in cuba but you can go to do educational work humanitarian wear religious kind of exchanges so we have one of these people the people educational trips going in december we're hoping take a lot of people and it's on the anniversary of when obama tried to reestablish relations with cuba and so it's a trip calling for a reestablishment of relations because you know we go to. at
a very dangerous places we go we take groups sometimes to small groups to yemen to afghanistan to. places where the u.s. and there's actually some real conflict going on but in the case of cuba you're just going having a great time in the cuban people are so wonderful and you come back saying why in the world would the u.s. restrict travel to that it's one of the safest places in the world and some go last as flying to van and now is this trip you're taking from the usa or you're going through toronto you know we're going through the u.s. most people will leave through miami but it's important for us to go whether it's to cuba or anywhere else because we tend to go to places where our government has negative relations because we want people to understand that there are people just like us that we want to be the model of what we want our country to do which is not invade countries militarily but actually focus on diplomacy and to that point
russia is under u.s. sanctions now some opposed to under obama others circa trump yet when our astronauts have to get to or from the international space station we hitched a ride with russia did or did not the cold war bring down the berlin wall 30 years ago well it was supposed to but now it seems like it's the punching bag when ever there is something that can be blamed on the russians like the lousy campaign that hillary clinton way. to become president it's the russians fault or now we see certainly the political parties using russia as a way to find fault with each other when i think that what we need to do is really understand russia more and there are citizen to citizen groups that go constantly to russia a woman sharon tennyson has been doing this for decades and we think it's so
important that people not. only go and see for themselves but come back and get involved politically and at this time when our state department is just. an appendage of the pentagon we need ordinary citizens to be the ones out front to be saying don't drag us into a war whether it's with russia or china or the ongoing wars we have in the middle east we need to end those and stuff from going into new ones well i've only got about 30 seconds but you teed up the pitch give us a couple examples of how citizen to citizen diplomacy has borne fruit what worked as a result of folks talking about forbes well in the case of iran we've been going taking groups every year to iran and those people come back and they go to the congress and they lobby and they say we don't want to go with war with iran so knock on glass. so far that hasn't happened and we certainly have been taking groups to
say we don't want the us to continue to have military bases we've been going to japan ok now south korea where they're fighting against the us bases those kind of things showing our solidarity with local people activist and code pink founder medea benjamin thanks again i always enjoy when you come to visit us here on the big picture thanks for having me on now let's talk about the birds and the bees and the facts of life are frightening since 1970 the bird population in the usa and canada is down 29 percent there are some 3000000000 fewer birds than 50 years ago now also in dramatic decline blogs while the human population has doubled in the last 40 years the journal of science reports that the insect population has been reduced by almost half why is this happening and why does this matter let's ask doug stephan host of the american family farmer radio.
show heard each weekend on stations across the usa and you can hear it on demand it doug stephan dot com doug stewart 2 years ago you were one of the guests on my very 1st shows here at r t america and back then you warned about pesticides like polite folks say poisoning us via produce from big corporate ag is that also poisoning these critters. well it's not only poisoning the critters it's poisoning us it's poisoning everything the atmosphere the water the lame and you name it whatever there is in the atmosphere or comes about as a result of the atmosphere is being affected by all of these chemicals you know we can go through the same routine with month sandow and bear and dupont they're the ones that are creating these things but they don't create them in a vacuum they create them because somebody is asking them to create them it isn't just here in north america it's in europe it's in places where there's lots of
population and they're worried about things like mosquitoes in tripoli you know as well as i do because you're from my neck of the woods sure all of the i don't want to stay hysteria but there's been a lot of attention focused in new england on tripoli and that has brought about a lot a use of a lot of stuff that still people don't know very much about well and that's why i'm glad we're talking about this because you're right when we think bugs we think pasts and right now where i live in rhode island they're spraying to kill the mosquitoes with that tripoli disease but 3 quarters of all known plant and animal species are insects how screwed would we be without them. well you know you were talking about birds and we've talked about other the the bee population that's being affected by all of this stuff nobody's talking about butterflies i don't know whether you know it or not or whether your viewers know it but butterflies are almost as responsible and responsive for things like pollinating
corn or pollinating flowers or pollination we have the it we can't exist without the this object being moved from one point to another stuff doesn't grow unless there's some sort of sexual for lack of a better term contact between the a and the b. that he and the she the male or female and butterflies do that the same as b.s. do and they're getting wiped out all over the place. fascinating because we do think about bees and there is a beekeeper in california who says he's lost over 37000000 bees 600 hives and he believes that nearby g.m.o. corn is to blame 2 of those bayer crop science pesticides you alluded to are linked with big b. die offs in the usa and europe so this is really about our food chain and that.
well it's yeah it is about the food chain it's about us feeding ourselves and we've talked of a lot i do on the american family farmer and the other radio programs that i do about sustenance and what the american public or maybe the whole world doesn't understanding more about food because we don't have food safety we don't have a connection with the farm people don't understand the kids that come to my farm to see what's going on they don't understand cows they don't know about how to grow lettuce this lack this soul this disconnect from if you will city to country and one of the things that i think is going to affect us down the road is not only the sorts of things we're talking about with regard to spraying and the things that are manufactured but there's a new movie that mark ruffalo is in that will be out i think in the next month or so because i'm a dairy guy i know a lot about cows and i know this particular movie is about reality he represents
a group in a community where it's an ag community a lot of cows died because they were drinking the water coming down the stream everybody's trying to figure out what the hell happened and what happened was that the stuff that they were just lucy out on the water willy nilly was being absorbed by the cows and they were thirsty and hundreds of cows died it isn't just the chemicals that are aimed at addressing some of these problems but it's stuff that just becomes over i mean like fluoride putting fluoride in the water that. this is dangerous is many other chemicals in the everyday millions of people buy toothpaste in the grocery store or the c.v.s. that has 4 right on it it is no longer just water hey you talked about buying eating local and you are the american family farmer with autumn upon us you see piles of pumpkins everywhere at farm stands but year round the closer to the
ground we buy our food the healthier it is for us correct. absolutely it is this is one of my this is one of my old salaries thank you i love your expression teeing you up you love to team me up for stuff like that because it's my favorite subject when it comes to the farm and because and what i said a few minutes ago about being close to the farm we are dramatically removed and so whenever we can promote farmers' markets you can promote going to your local farm or buying and it isn't by the way just produce it's milk dairy products all of those things were being creamed by an organization called dairy farmers in america which is basically controlled by the same company that controls 80 percent 80 percent of the fluid milk supply in this country sound so when you say american dairy association but it's big business right well yeah it's become huge business
people are angry at me because i still always talk about this on the on the on the farm show but it's you know i've got to do is look at the numbers and understand where things are coming from and what it's doing to our bodies to are held to our longevity and that not to mention even one of my other pet peeve that you love to see me up on and that's the drug industry the use of hamp and so we get the oil and i mean and of course the environment the closer to the source to buy their stuff the less fossil fuel it consume and their movement. step right the american family farmer radio show you can hear it at doug stephan dot com and on stations across the usa every week and thanks again doug. my pleasure and thank you for watching the big picture you know if you see us somewhere else you can now also find r t america live at youtube dot com slash r t america if you're on directv we are channel 321 on the super cool pluto t.v.
and very well may continue watching us until. imax does are this is the kaiser report and we are in palm springs california krypto springs 2019 all ops going on last to talk about. yes well we've had a wonderful time here it is about 100 degrees fahrenheit it is about 100 degrees fahrenheit or i guess that's about 38 celsius for those in europe we've had the big crash while we ran here 16 percent move in bit by in prices some of the points were down up to 40 percent of course the impeachment proceedings against the