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Stray Dog[_2_]
March 20th 09, 06:37 PM
Quotes from a very remarkable and excellent book:

This is about a real person's history starting in 1535 AD, in southern
France.

--------------------

A typical capitalist at the stage of "primitive accumulation," Masenx
reinvested his profits and made money on everything he turned his hand to.
In the first place, he made loans of grain or money at short term and high
interest for a month...or for a week...at a time, and he also practiced
the cruelist form of usury, lending "from day to day at his pleasure." H
lent his bordiers...the money to marry off a daughter or a sister, and he
also furnished, on credit, the silver, the old wine, and the leg of mutton
for the wedding feast. He lent money on land, and in time the fields of
his debt-ridden clients would help round out Masenx's own properties.

Maenx, the fermier-usurer, despite the Church sometimes mentions interest,
or paga, in his account books. Thus, for example, at one point he lent
some grain to Mandret fils, of Vors, at 14 percent for twelve days, or 400
percent per year. At other times the interest is masked by bookkeeping
tricks. In 1542 Masenx lent a certain Calvet, called "Bean", a peasant
from the farmstead of Andrades, ten quintals of hay valued at fifty sous.
One month later he was reimbursed fifty-four sous, a return of 8 percent
per month or 96 percent per year. The record of the second operation was
poorly camouflages by an opportune erasure. Was Masenx feeling pangs of
conscience, or was he afraid of prosecution? At other times a deliberate
error permitted the surreptitious intruduction of usury: deniers were
transformed into sous, and livres tournois were converted into ecus; three
quintals of hay lent in 1538 turned into five, God knows by what magic,
when they were repaid in 1539. The accounts swarm with similar
indelicacies and "mistakes" in arithmetic which, by a curious coincidence,
always seem to work out to Masenx's advantage.

One of his tricks consisted of making loans of barley, rye, oats, or
vetches and demanding repayment measure for measure in wheat. Another was
to play on price fluctuations which were often completely fictitious. For
example, in 1545 he calculated the value of the wheat he lent at four
livres and ten sous the setier; the following year he demanded repayment
(in kind) at the rate of two livres the setier, forcing the borrower to
return over twice the amunt of grain he had received. Masenx's cynicism
knew no bound, for at the same moment he was selling his own wheat on the
market of Gaillac for five livres and six sous the setier! A dozen similar
examples show that he made a regular practice of reckoning the reimbursed
grain at half its market price, thereby doubling the size of the loan.

Occasionally our man was assailed by feelings of remorse and perhaps fear.
He altered the original loan figure...to include the interest...that he
collected, together with the principal, when the loan came due in two
months' time, imagining he had dissembled thereby a usurious interest of
150 percent. But the chemistry of the centuries has unmasked the
deception. The black inck of the interlineation contrasts with a different
ink, which had in time become a bit reddish in color, used in the original
entry. Masenx's conduct is typical. Like thousands of his
contemporaries--businessmen, lawyers, and large-scale tenant farmers- he
specialized in usurious grain loans.

(two more pages of this guy's practices were described in detail).
--------------------

The above is from pages 126-127 of "The Peasants of Languedoc" by Emmanuel
Le Roy Ladurie, translated with an introduction by John Day (consulting
editor: George Huppert), University of Illinois Press, paperback edition,
1976 Illini Books edition, originally copyrighted 1974, from the original
"Les Paysans de Languedoc," in french (1966), ISBN 0252006356, 370 pp,
incl index, and many pages of document references. Languedoc is a region
in southern France about one tenth the size of France, and the book
presents a variety of data from about 1480 AD to about 1800 AD, mainly
from govt, church, tax, and other archives, and from other prior history
books. This is primarily an economic history book focused on the
depression from 1680 to 1700-1710 AD that occurred only in Languedoc and
nowhere else in France at that time. The book received many international
endorsements and recognition. Ladurie is a professor of history at the
College de France.

Ike Milligan
March 21st 09, 04:23 AM
"Stray Dog" > wrote in message
.org...
>
>
> Quotes from a very remarkable and excellent book:
>
> This is about a real person's history starting in 1535 AD, in southern
> France.
>
> --------------------
>
> A typical capitalist at the stage of "primitive accumulation," Masenx
> reinvested his profits and made money on everything he turned his hand to.
> In the first place, he made loans of grain or money at short term and high
> interest for a month...or for a week...at a time, and he also practiced
> the cruelist form of usury, lending "from day to day at his pleasure." H
> lent his bordiers...the money to marry off a daughter or a sister, and he
> also furnished, on credit, the silver, the old wine, and the leg of mutton
> for the wedding feast. He lent money on land, and in time the fields of
> his debt-ridden clients would help round out Masenx's own properties.
>
> Maenx, the fermier-usurer, despite the Church sometimes mentions interest,
> or paga, in his account books. Thus, for example, at one point he lent
> some grain to Mandret fils, of Vors, at 14 percent for twelve days, or 400
> percent per year. At other times the interest is masked by bookkeeping
> tricks. In 1542 Masenx lent a certain Calvet, called "Bean", a peasant
> from the farmstead of Andrades, ten quintals of hay valued at fifty sous.
> One month later he was reimbursed fifty-four sous, a return of 8 percent
> per month or 96 percent per year. The record of the second operation was
> poorly camouflages by an opportune erasure. Was Masenx feeling pangs of
> conscience, or was he afraid of prosecution? At other times a deliberate
> error permitted the surreptitious intruduction of usury: deniers were
> transformed into sous, and livres tournois were converted into ecus; three
> quintals of hay lent in 1538 turned into five, God knows by what magic,
> when they were repaid in 1539. The accounts swarm with similar
> indelicacies and "mistakes" in arithmetic which, by a curious coincidence,
> always seem to work out to Masenx's advantage.
>
> One of his tricks consisted of making loans of barley, rye, oats, or
> vetches and demanding repayment measure for measure in wheat. Another was
> to play on price fluctuations which were often completely fictitious. For
> example, in 1545 he calculated the value of the wheat he lent at four
> livres and ten sous the setier; the following year he demanded repayment
> (in kind) at the rate of two livres the setier, forcing the borrower to
> return over twice the amunt of grain he had received. Masenx's cynicism
> knew no bound, for at the same moment he was selling his own wheat on the
> market of Gaillac for five livres and six sous the setier! A dozen similar
> examples show that he made a regular practice of reckoning the reimbursed
> grain at half its market price, thereby doubling the size of the loan.
>
> Occasionally our man was assailed by feelings of remorse and perhaps fear.
> He altered the original loan figure...to include the interest...that he
> collected, together with the principal, when the loan came due in two
> months' time, imagining he had dissembled thereby a usurious interest of
> 150 percent. But the chemistry of the centuries has unmasked the
> deception. The black inck of the interlineation contrasts with a different
> ink, which had in time become a bit reddish in color, used in the original
> entry. Masenx's conduct is typical. Like thousands of his
> contemporaries--businessmen, lawyers, and large-scale tenant farmers- he
> specialized in usurious grain loans.
>
> (two more pages of this guy's practices were described in detail).
> --------------------
>
> The above is from pages 126-127 of "The Peasants of Languedoc" by Emmanuel
> Le Roy Ladurie, translated with an introduction by John Day (consulting
> editor: George Huppert), University of Illinois Press, paperback edition,
> 1976 Illini Books edition, originally copyrighted 1974, from the original
> "Les Paysans de Languedoc," in french (1966), ISBN 0252006356, 370 pp,
> incl index, and many pages of document references. Languedoc is a region
> in southern France about one tenth the size of France, and the book
> presents a variety of data from about 1480 AD to about 1800 AD, mainly
> from govt, church, tax, and other archives, and from other prior history
> books. This is primarily an economic history book focused on the
> depression from 1680 to 1700-1710 AD that occurred only in Languedoc and
> nowhere else in France at that time. The book received many international
> endorsements and recognition. Ladurie is a professor of history at the
> College de France.
>
What a mensch! He helped the economy to thrive! (No sarcasm intended).

Day Brown[_4_]
March 21st 09, 05:53 PM
Ike Milligan wrote:
> What a mensch! He helped the economy to thrive! (No sarcasm intended).
In "Life in a Medieval Village", we see similar greed; but there were
also examples where the villagers knew who was ripping them off, and
dragged the ******* out to be hung.

Nowadays, when corporations do it, nobody knows who to shoot.

Stray Dog[_2_]
March 21st 09, 06:34 PM
On Sat, 21 Mar 2009, Day Brown wrote:

> Date: Sat, 21 Mar 2009 12:53:52 -0500
> From: Day Brown >
> Newsgroups: alt.computer.consultants, sci.econ, misc.invest.stocks,
> alt.politics.economics, sci.research.careers
> Subject: Re: Accounting fraud in the year 1540s +/- AD.....
>
> Ike Milligan wrote:
>> What a mensch! He helped the economy to thrive! (No sarcasm intended).

I would say he helped his own economy to thrive (and at the expense of
others who were ripped off).

> In "Life in a Medieval Village", we see similar greed; but there were also
> examples where the villagers knew who was ripping them off, and dragged the
> ******* out to be hung.
>
> Nowadays, when corporations do it, nobody knows who to shoot.

I refer you to books on criminology and books which explain lawsuits
brought by plaintifs that can be individuals, organizations, or even
government offices against one or more officers or against the whole
corporation, depending on the circumstances.

Corporations, however, are very often very successful at defending
themselves. The possibility for justice is most likely related to the
financial resources of the corporation. There is a very excellent book (I
read it cover to cover) on how corporations **** people:

"No Contest--Corporate Lawyers and the Perversion of Justice
in America" (by Ralph Nader and Wesley J. Smith). Very well
documented, names many other lawyers who wrote books on
similar themes, explains the massive use of legal tricks by
corporate lawyers to screw people, or anyone they want.

March 22nd 09, 02:15 PM
we can beat that. just read about josef stalins inventory controls in
the old sovet union ! BWAAA HAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHA


"THE BLACK HAND" is the name of the international
terrorist group that is causing all the problems.

March 22nd 09, 02:16 PM
better yet, read the records of how obama and convicted felon tony rezko
got obama his house on the cheap ! HAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHA


"THE BLACK HAND" is the name of the international
terrorist group that is causing all the problems.

phil scott
March 23rd 09, 02:42 AM
On Mar 22, 6:18*pm, Stray Dog > wrote:
> On Sun, 22 Mar 2009, Day Brown wrote:
> > Date: Sun, 22 Mar 2009 18:40:04 -0500
> > From: Day Brown >
> > Newsgroups: alt.computer.consultants, sci.econ, misc.invest.stocks,
> > * * alt.politics.economics, sci.research.careers, alt.community
> > Subject: Re: Accounting fraud in the year 1540s +/- AD.....
>
> > Stray Dog wrote:
> >> "No Contest--Corporate Lawyers and the Perversion of Justice
> >> in America" (by Ralph Nader and Wesley J. Smith). Very well documented,
> >> names many other lawyers who wrote books on
> >> similar themes, explains the massive use of legal tricks by corporate
> >> lawyers to screw people, or anyone they want.
> > Revolution: noun. A class action lawsuit against lawyers.
>
> > The *******s are asking for it. Even if not revolution, it'll be messy.
>
> Did you read this one (below), too?
>
> A review of "Democracy for the Few" by Michael Parenti
> (7th edition, 2002, Bedford/St. Martin's, ISBN 0312392508, 351 pp)
>
> This book has long reference lists at the end of every chapter. Almost every
> quote below has a refernce to at least one source.
>
> Page 4- Adam Smith gets quoted a lot. I wonder how many people know
> about this quote: "...Adam Smith, the premier exponent of early capitalism,
> wrote in 1776: 'The necessity of civil government grows up with the
> acquisition of valuable property.' And 'Till there be property there can be no
> government, the very end of which is to secure wealth, and to defend the rich
> from the poor.'"
>
> Page 9- "A large majority of the 'self-made' Forbes 400 superrich inherited
> fortunes or received crudial start-up capital from a family member." And "The
> trend has been toward greater economic inequality. In the mid 1990s,
> corporate profits more than doubled; income from investments has been
> growing two to three times faster than income from work. Between 1980 and
> 1992, the five hundred largest U.S. industrial corporations more than doulbled
> their assets..., while shedding over five million jobs." and "During the last
> three decades, the richest 1 percent saw their average after-tax incomes soar
> by 115 percent--while the incomes of the bottom fifth declined by almost 10
> percent."
>
> Page 11- "Mergers are justified as strengthening the competitive capacity of a
> firm. But merged companies seldom display improved performance"... "The
> mergers benefit the big shareholders, creditors, and top executives who walk
> away with megaprofits for the sale--while consumers and workers pay the
> costs" and "If and when the corporation merges with anotehr or is bought out,
> the [pension] fund is absorbed by the takeover and the workers often never
> see a penny of the money they paid into it."
>
> Page 12- "In the last decade, U.S.-based transnational companies created
> 345,000 jobs abroad while cutting 783,000 jobs in the United States."
>
> Page 13-"Five giant corporations dominate the domestic and world grain
> market. Just 1 percent of all food corporations control 80 percent of the food
> industrry's assets and close to 90 percent of the profits."
>
> Page 14-"Thus, during the 1992 recession, corporate profits grew to record
> levels, as companies squeezed more output from each employee while paying
> less in wages and benefits."
>
> Page 17- " Between 1973 and 1997, worker productivity (output per hour of
> work) increased by over 20 percent, while real wages (adjusted for inflation)
> declined by 22.6 percent."
>
> Page 29- "A fact of real significance in any understanding of political power in
> America is that almost all 'our' cultural institutions are under plutocratic
> control, linked to the business system, ruled by nonelected, self-perpetuating
> groups of affluent corporate representatives who are answerable to no one but
> themselves. We the people have no vote, no portion of the ownership, and no
> legal decision-making power within these institutions."
>
> Page 33-"...conservatives are for or against government handouts depending
> on whole hand is out. They want to cut spending on human services and aid to
> lower-income groups, but vigorously suport all sorts of government subsidies
> and bailouts for large corporate enterprises."
>
> Page 42-"Early American society has been described as egalitarian, free from
> the extremes of want and wealth that characterized Europe. In fact, from
> colonial times onward, men of influence received vast land grants from the
> crown and presided over estaes that bespoke an impressive munificence. By
> 1700, three-fourths of the acreage in New York belonged to fewer than a
> dozen persons. In the interior of Virginia, seven individuals owned over 1.7
> million acres. By 1760, fewer than five hundred men in five colonial cities
> controlled most of the commerce, shipping, banking, mining, and
> manufacturing on the eastern seaboard."
>
> Page 44-"Small farmers were burdened by heavy rents, ruinous taxes, and low
> incomes. To survive, they frequently had to borrow money at high interest
> rates. To meet their debts, they mortgaged their future crops and went still
> deeper into debt, caught in that cycle of rural indebtedness that today is still
> the common fate of agrarian peoples in this and other countries.,"
>
> Page 45-"The framers of the Constitution could agree with Madison when he
> wrote also in Federalist No. 10 that 'the most common and durable source of
> faction has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who
> hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in
> society' and that 'the first object of government' is 'the protection of different
> and unequal faculties of acquiring property.'"
>
> Page 56-"Contrary to the view that the nation was free of class conflict, class
> struggle in nineteenth-century America 'were as fierce as any known in the
> industrial world.' After sporadic uprisings and strikes of teh early decades
> there came the railroad strikes of the 1870s, followed by the farmers' rebelions
> and the great industrial strikes of the 1880s and 1890s."
>
> Page 60-61: "'Progressivism was not the triump of small businesses over the
> trusts, as has often been suggested, but the victory of big businesses in
> achieving the rationalization of the economy that only the federal government
> could provide'" And..."The period is called the Progressive Era because of the
> much publicised but largely ineffectual legislation to control monopolies...."
>
> Pages 62-64- Much discussion of the difficulties in the labor movement in the
> USA and how the government did many things to stop or limit it.
>
> Page 68-"The U.S. government's Agency for International Development
> (AID) spent $1 billion in taxpayer money over the past decade to help
> companies move U.S. jobs to cheaper labor markets abroad. AID provided
> low-interest loans, tax exemptions, travel and training funds, and advertising.
> AID also furnished blacklists to help companies weed out union sympathizers
> from their workforces in various countries."
>
> Page 69- "The General Accounting Office (GAO) estimates that agribusiness
> enterprises that use legal loopholes to circumvent subsidy limits yearly collect
> more than $2 billion in unjustified farm program payments."
>
> Page 74-"Most of the 'tax reforms' produced by Congress are paraded as relief
> for the besieged middle class when actually they mostly benefit the higher-
> income brackets. Thus, for every tax dollar in tax cuts accorded the bottom 80
> percent the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 gave $1,189 to the wealthiest 1
> percent."
>
> Page 85-"In recent decades, U.S. industries and banks have invested heavily in
> the 'Third World' (Asia, Africa, and Latin America), attracted by the high
> return that comes with underpaid labor and the near absence of taxes,
> environmental regulations, and safety and consumer protections."
>
> Page 86-"Since World War II, more than $230 billion in U.S. military aid has
> been given to some eighty-five nations. The U.S. has trained and equiped over
> two millino foreign troops and police, the purpose being not to defend these
> countries from outside invasion but to protect capital investments and the
> ruling oligarchs from their own restive populations."
>
> Pages 88-90- Much here about how the US CIA participated in supporting or
> overthrowing governments not according to the wishes of the people but
> arrangements favorable to the US government (and not necessarily to the US
> people).
>
> Page98-"While free-market opponents maintain that Social Security doesn't
> work, what really bothers them is that it does. It is one of the most successful
> human services programs in U.S. history. In over six decades, it has never
> missed a payment. Its administrative costs are only about one percent of
> annual payouts. By comparison, administrative costs for private insurance are
> about 13 percent."
>
> Page 99-"Contrary to the myth that 'private enterprise can do it better,' death
> rates and patient expenses are higher at for-profit hospitals than at nonprofit
> facilities."
>
> Page 104-105-Here is the story, and the reference, about how General Motors
> and Standard Oil conspired, with dummy corporations as fronts, to purchase
> the Los Angeles rail system and replace it with buses.
>
> Page 118- Here is the chapter that documents how individual citizens go to
> jail for small crimes but when corporations commit large crimes, nothing or
> almost nothing happens. "Burglary and robbery cost the public about $4
> billion a year, while corporate fraud costs at least $200 billion a year."
>
> Page 119-"Corporate crime is not a rarity but a regularity. The Department of
> Justice found that 60 percent of the 582 largest U.S. companies have been
> guilty of one or more criminal actions, be it tax evasion, price-fixing, illegal
> kickbacks, bribes to public officials, consumer fraud, or violations of labor
> codes, workplace safety, and environmental laws. The Department of Labor
> found that corporations have filched hundreds of billions of dollars from
> worker pension funds."
>
> "Many companies are repeat offenders. Over the years, General Electric has
> been convicted of 282 counts of contract fraud and fined $20 million." Many
> other references to specific companies follow. For anyone who cares to look
> farther, most books or textbooks on criminology will have a chapter on
> corporate crime or white collar crime, complete with a bibliography of
> references. Public libraries and bookstores in general have whole sections on
> corporate crime.
>
> Pages 166-167-Here is a good introduction to trade associations, business
> groups, and organizations designed to "spread the word" in favor of business
> interests.
>
> Page 168- "Richly funded right-wingers have been able to recruit and train
> cadres of ideologically committed writers and publicists who infiltrate
> government agencies, congressional and lobbying staffs, and news agencies,
> issuing a steady supply of materials to advance the corporate free-trade, free-
> market agenda." Two references were given as basis for this statement.
>
> Page 172- About the WTO--"Elected by no one and drawn from the corporate
> world, these panelists meet in secret and can have investment stakes in the
> very issues they adjudicate, being limited by no conflict-of-interest provisions.
> Their function is to allow the transnational companies to do whatever they like
> without any restraints or regulations placed on them by any country. Not one
> of GATT's five hundred pages of rules and restrictions are directed against
> private business; all are against governments. Signatory governments must
> lower tariffs, end farm subsidies, treat foreign companies the same as domestic
> ones, honor all corporate claims, and obey the ruleins of a permanent elite
> bureaucracy, the WTO." The rest of the page give examples of the autocracy
> of the WTO.
>
> Page 178-How our media are controled-"As of 2000, eight corporate
> conglomerates controlled most of the national media--down from twenty-three
> in 1989. About 80 percent of the daily newspaper circulation in the United
> States belongs to a few giant chains like Gannett and Knight-Ridder, and the
> trend in owner concentration continues unabated. Today, less than 2 percent
> of U.S. cities have competing newspapers under separate ownership."
>
> Page 183-"The press has helped create the 'lock-'em up' crime craze
> throughout America. Between 1993 and 1996 the nationwide homicide rate
> dropped by 20 percent, yet coverage of the murders on ABC, CBS, and NBC
> evening news leaped 721 percent. As a result, the number of U.S. residents
> who ranked crime as the prime problem jumped sixfold. Corporate crime,
> however, is another story, largely an unreported one. Recent surveys show
> that mainstream media rarely express critical editorial opinions on corporate
> crime."
>
> Page 186-"The CIA has owned more than 240 media operations around the
> world, including newspapers, magazines, publishing houses, radio and
> television stations, and wire services. Many Third World countries get more
> news from the CIA and other such Western sources than from Third World
> news organizations." *A reference is given for this statement. The story about
> CIA involvement with some of the drug trade, in the end, resulted in this: "A
> subsequent report by the CIA itself largely confirmed his charges [the guy
> who first broke the story]." And, a reference is given for this statement, too.
>
> Page 225- Exposes of public and grass roots organizations that are actually
> fronts for corporate interests.
>
> Page 231-About the revolving door between business and politicians: "'The
> thing that really makes me mad is the dual standard.' complained a Senate
> committee staff member. 'It's perfectly acceptable to turn over information
> about what's going on in committee to the auto industry or the utilities, but
> not to the public.'"
>
> Page 232-"Some of the most significant legislation is drafted clandestinely.
> Without the benefit of public hearings and public debate, a coterie of high-
> placed government officials and corporate executives secretly put together the
> North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a two-thousand-page bill
> that went largely unread by the lawmakers voting on it."
>
> Page 263-What waste in the government? - "Seldom mentioned is the fact that
> administrative expenses are generally less in public bureacracies than in private
> ones." A reference is given for this.
>
> Page 264-The Conrail example, where Conrail was government-owned, then
> sold back to private interests at a bargain price.
>
> Page 267-"The story is the same in other countries. In Britain and Chile,
> government pension insurance funds were privatized. Vast fortunes were
> made by those who handled the accounts while the pensioners ended up with
> much less than before. In Bolivia, teh oil refineries were privatized, leading to
> a 15-percent hike in gas prices. In countries throughout Eastern Europe,
> privatization led to poorer and vastly more expensive services, and much
> plundering of public resources by private profiteers."
>
> This set of quotes represents only a fraction of the examples, references,
> topics, and problems faced by the many in the world who are not rich and/or
> powerful.

thaks for compiling and posting this dog... Id have to read for months
ro find a tenth of it..and I dnt hve the time


Phil scott