The Sanctity of Money …


Here is a bit of an interview with David Stockman who was at one time the budget director for President Reagan (with Bernard Condon of Associated Press). Stockman comes across as the shill for the old-money seigneurs:

 

Stockman: We’re stalled, stuck.

Condon: What will 10-year Treasuries yield in a year or five years?

A: I have no guess, but I do know where it is now (a yield of about 2 percent) is totally artificial. It’s the result of massive purchases by not only the Fed but all of the other central banks of the world.

Q: What’s wrong with that?

A: It doesn’t come out of savings. It’s made up money. It’s printing press money. When the Fed buys $5 billion worth of bonds this morning, which it’s doing periodically, it simply deposits $5 billion in the bank accounts of the eight dealers they buy the bonds from.

Q: And what are the consequences of that?

A: The consequences are horrendous. If you could make the world rich by having all the central banks print unlimited money, then we have been making a mistake for the last several thousand years of human history.

 

Here are two mutually supporting economic tropes on display: the first being the ‘good money- bad money morality play’ the second is the ‘monetization (or hyper-inflation) myth’.

Savings or retained earnings are simply debt that has been laundered: it is funds borrowed then given to another in exchange for some product or service. The borrowed funds are ‘earnings’ on the account of the seller. These are presumed to be the good money as opposed to debts created without any regard by out-of-control money authorities. Mr. Stockman asserts that the sales-transaction process by itself is ennobling, that it alters the fundamental nature of borrowed money. Carrying on with this idea, there are virtuous enterprises with organic returns that produce good money while the non-virtuous, out-of-control central banks and governments produce the bad.

This is a long-running drama: it’s also complete nonsense. The enveloping idea insists that our enterprises are productive but are constrained by debt. Practically every ‘Brand X’ economist uses as a starting point the assumption of the productive industrial enterprise that returns good money.

In the real world these enterprises do not exist. Products are unimportant, they are given their fifteen-seconds of fame then exit into well-deserved obscurity (landfill). What matters is the degree to which the collateral worth of enterprises can be enlarged so that debts can be taken on against them by their entrepreneur-owners. Whether a firm can provide good-money returns is immaterial if the same firm has credit enough to monetize its costs and provide profits. Entrepreneurs do not become rich by the sale of goods and services, they borrow billions against the accounts of their firms, using debt to expand or support their enterprises, leveraging against their holdings and their customers’ accounts. The customers in turn are responsible for retiring and servicing the debts taken on by the firms.

Stockman sanctifies the process by hauling out economists’ fairy tales about money-morality. He endorses the virtuous old money held by ‘deserving rich’ who (logically) possess the bulk of it.

 

“The consequences are horrendous. If you could make the world rich by having all the central banks print unlimited money, then we have been making a mistake for the last several thousand years of human history.”

 

You can make a handful rich by having banks print limited money and giving this handful access to it, leaving to the rest the obligation to repay.

Look to the sainted entrepreneurs (The Hill):

 

Congress can ensure U.S. remains world’s most entrepreneurial nation

By Steve Case, President Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness (The Hill)

For all the talk about how broken Washington seems to be these days – and there is a lot to fix – considerable progress has been made over the last few months around the issue of improving the environment for entrepreneurs to start new businesses, grow existing companies, and create jobs. There is broad bipartisan agreement that entrepreneurs have played a critical role in creating the leading economy in the world, and that we need to double down on our nation’s commitment to our entrepreneurs. Now’s the time to push pro-entrepreneurship legislation over the goal line, so we can ensure the United States remains the world’s most entrepreneurial nation.

 

Here is a buzzword salad: the Administration promotes ‘opportunities’ for entrepreneurs to stuff more credit into their own pockets.

Here is an entrepreneur right here:

 

Ford Awards Mulally $58.3 Million in Stock for Turnaround

Keith Naughton (Bloomberg)

Ford Motor Co. awarded Chief Executive Officer Alan Mulally $58.3 million in stock as a reward for the automaker’s turnaround.

Ford paid the stock to its top executive as part of an incentive plan for 2009, according to filings yesterday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Ford earned $29.5 billion in the last three years after $30.1 billion in losses from 2006 through 2008. The shares, which traded as low as $1.01 on Nov. 20, 2008, closed yesterday in New York at $12.09.

Mulally will receive other compensation for 2011, including salary and benefits, which will be revealed in a proxy report in the coming weeks. Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford withheld some of the stock award to cover Mulally’s income taxes. After taxes, Mulally received $34.5 million in stock. Ford has awarded him stock worth more than $100 million the past two years.

“Our compensation philosophy is to align the interests of our leadership with those of our shareholders,” Todd Nissen, a spokesman, said yesterday in an e-mail. “Ford’s stock was $1.96 a share at the time of the 2009 awards, and is over $12 a share today. That is a more than a 500 percent increase, which benefits all stakeholders in the Ford turnaround.”

Last July, United Auto Workers President Bob King assailed Mulally’s compensation as “outrageous” and “excessive.” Last year, Ford rewarded Mulally with $56.6 million in stock. The executive’s 2010 compensation rose 48 percent to $26.5 million.

Options, Restricted Stock

In his new awards, Mulally, 66, also received 1.28 million stock options with a strike price of $12.46, which he can begin to exercise next year, and he was awarded 376,016 restricted stock units that can be converted into shares in 2014.

Executive Chairman Bill Ford, 54, received 595,238 stock options with a strike price of $12.46, the first of which he can exercise next year, and he was awarded 175,473 restricted stock units that can be converted into shares in 2014, according to a separate filing with the SEC.

 

Talk about being on the right street-corner at the right time! Who knows who this Mulally character is, no doubt another rent-an-executive who migrates from company to company borrowing massive paydays for himself. Another version is ex-Home Depot, ex-Chrysler, ex-Cerberus cockroach Robert Nardelli.

In March of 2009 most of the stock prices of US companies were beaten down. Mulally had nothing to do with Ford’s stock price increasing any more than he had to do with the increase in any other company’s stock. Ben Bernanke and the Treasury Department introduced moral hazard without end. This, discount-window cash and timely capital increased demand for all kinds of companies’ stocks including insolvent finance firms and real-estate investment trusts (REITs). Maybe part of Mulally’s $100 million haul was for approaching Fed Boss Bernanke with begging bowl in hand:

Note the auto-beggars lined up for TALF handouts from the Fed soup kitchen:

Issuers
Ally Master Owner Trust (ex-GMAC)
American Express Credit Account Master Trust
AmeriCredit Automobile Receivables Trust 2009-1
ARI Fleet Lease Trust 2010-A
Bank of America Auto Trust 2009-1
BMW Floorplan Master Owner Trust
BMW Vehicle Lease Trust 2009-1
Cabela’s Credit Card Master Note Trust
CarMax Auto Owner Trust 2009-1
CarMax Auto Owner Trust 2009-A
Chase Issuance Trust
Chesapeake Funding LLC
Chrysler Financial Auto Securitization Trust 2009-A
CIT Equipment Collateral 2009-VT1
Citibank Omni Master Trust
CNH Equipment Trust 2009-B
CNH Wholesale Master Note Trust
Discover Card Execution Note Trust
FIFC Premium Funding LLC
First National Master Note Trust
Ford Credit Auto Lease Trust 2009-A
Ford Credit Auto Owner Trust 2009-A
Ford Credit Floorplan Master Owner Trust A
GE Capital Credit Card Master Note Trust
GE Dealer Floorplan Master Note Trust
Great America Leasing Receivables Funding, L.L.C.
Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Trust 2009-2
Honda Auto Receivables 2009-2 Owner Trust
Marlin Leasing Receivables XII LLC
Navistar Financial Dealer Note Master Owner Trust
Nissan Auto Lease Trust 2009-A
OCWEN Servicer Advance Receivables Funding Company II LTD.
PFS Financing Corp.
SLC Private Student Loan Trust 2009-A
SLC Private Student Loan Trust 2010-B
SLM Private Education Loan Trust 2009-B
SLM Private Education Loan Trust 2009-C
SLM Private Education Loan Trust 2009-CT
SLM Private Education Loan Trust 2009-D
SLM Private Education Loan Trust 2010-A
U.S. Small Business Administration
Volkswagen Auto Lease Trust 2009-A
WHEELS SPV, LLC
World Financial Network Credit Card Master Note Trust
World Omni Auto Receivables Trust 2009-A
World Omni Master Owner Trust

According to the NY Fed the amounts borrowed were just south of a half-billion by auto ‘services’.

Consider there are primarily four levels of debt acceptance:

– There is debt taken on by a firm’s against its customers’ accounts.

– There is debt taken on by a firm against its own account, such as the firm’s own bank line of credit or access to stock and bond markets. In a debtonomy there is no difference between stocks, bonds or non-currency derivatives because all are forms of collateral, none being more ‘virtuous’ than others.

– Debt is taken on by firms against public accounts: either by way of (borrowed) subsidies, direct public loans such as TALF or by way of regulatory/tax ‘adjustments’.

– Debt is also taken on by firms against international accounts of trading partners by way of advantageous currency exchange- or interest rates.

Consider the pool of borrowed funds that is available for Mr. Mulally’s company to tap:

The 2009 ‘cash for clunkers’ program: $2.88 billion

– The remaining year of the 2005 Transportation funding SAFETEA-LU: $60.8 billion

– Highway transportation funding for 2010 and 2011: $80 billion

– Highway transportation component of Stimulus Act: $49 billion

– Depreciation allowance for the business purchase of new vehicles (subsidy for the purchase of SUVs and gigantic pickup trucks): $1 billion

– Oil depletion and other tax expenditures for the oil and gas industry since 2009: $8 billion

– Funds made available by Ford customers 2009-10: $240 billion (revenue includes sales of parts and Ford dealer warranties).

The total available is approximately $442 billion, all of which is borrowed outright or from customers. There is some overlap: the entire auto industry makes use of available highway space, all the other makers gain credit subsidies. Subsidies such as borrowing for real estate development are not included. Neither are ‘soft subsidies’ infrastructure such as hospitals and graveyards to manage the flow of corpses that flow from the use of Mr. Mulally’s products along with the insurance companies to manage the related costs.

The ‘Death Tolerance’ subsidy is one the nuclear reactor industry observes with anguish. How its executives wish that its products’ death rates could be as tolerable as those of the car makers. Sadly for them, it is not possible to make radiation sexy.

The cost of US wars represent another indirect subsidy for the car makers who need the flood of cheap(ish) fuel in order to have a market. Leaving out ‘black budget’ military operations in areas such as Colombia and Uganda, the total amount of debt-subsidy available for the Nardelli-Mulallys of this world to steal is over two trillion dollars.

How does it all end? How it is ending already: the little people refuse to pay, refuse to perform as trained seals for the rich. Consequently, the rate of credit expansion slows and deflation takes hold. As debt unravels so does wealth … whether it is virtuous or not.

29 thoughts on “The Sanctity of Money …

  1. casanova

    “How does it all end? How it is ending already: the little people refuse to pay, refuse to perform as trained seals for the rich. Consequently, the rate of credit expansion slows and deflation takes hold. As debt unravels so does wealth … whether it is virtuous or not. ”

    You have been saying this for some time now, and all I see out in the real world is prices going up, not down. I struggle to find smth which is cheaper today than it was last year. Even real estate, if you take out the rough neighbourhoods is not going down, rather is stagnating and in some areas is starting to go up.
    So, I have a hard time reconciling what you are saying with the reality out there.

    1. Mr. Roboto

      Two distorting factors are 1) the flood of very cheap liquidity (think “Zero Interest Rate Policy”) keeping prices artificially buoyed, 2) petroleum supplies starting to become strained while this flood of liquidity is weighing down on the economy.

      1. casanova

        Steve,
        I am surprised that you believe the myth that the market drives treasury yields.
        The bond market IS the Fed and the Fed only. Yields will be wherever the Fed wants them to be. All rest is noise and smoke screen. There is more than 90% correlation between the treasury yields and the Fed interest rates with the rates being the leading indicator.
        You have been calling for deflation many times, yet we still have to see it in our daily life. Like I said, everything costs more. There are very little exceptions to this.
        Nobody seems to have a clue about how this will develop.

      2. I. M. Nobody

        As a matter of fact I do have a clue. I am particular about who I share it with. I don’t share it with people displaying that kind of attitude. Because I would be wasting time and bandwidth.

      3. steve from virginia Post author

        The Fed is a small part of the bigger market, certainly not the whole thing. Because the market prices of credit are set at the margin, the Fed can have an outsized effect if it is clever/sensitive.

        The Fed can meet redemptions (calls for funds @ lender of last resort). It cannot do more: additional funds become reserves on Fed/central bank accounts (the same thing happens w/ BoJ and ECB). There is a lot of confusion about this but is an (unexplored part of) debtonomics.

        The Fed cannot determine the worth of currency/money (except interest rates) b/c this is determined by hundreds of millions of motorists around the world trading money for gas every day.

        Will current forms of cash money disappear? Some of them will, the euro appears to be on its last legs.

        What the Fed peddles in moral hazard. The entire country is a hedge fund, the business of America is finance. The country as a whole (by way of banks and whatnot) can lend trillions, even hundreds of trillions. They don’t for three reasons: fear of the large numbers, fear that finance will be perceived as ‘insane’ (because of the large numbers) and fear of being on the hook for large numbers. That last is where the moral hazard comes in.

        Basically, the private sector provides most of America’s loans, the public sector (which can run a perpetual deficit) services the private sector loans. Without the public sector deficit the entire private sector credit establishment collapses (the deficit is matched by the private sector surplus). Don’t look for deficit reduction any time soon.

        Prices: some go up (millionaire wages, hospitalizations, college degrees) others go down (houses, ordinary peeps’ wages) and the rest fluctuate (fuel and fuel-related). Deflation is a shortage of currency and credit shrinkage (one or both). W/ so many millions within ‘US govt. programs’ and private sector consolidating/deleveraging there is both credit/currency shortage. Currency is being hoarded across the board. This suggests outright class-warfare with the Fed being unable to meet the demand for cash and money multipliers collapsing.

        There is a lot more to these/this than can be put into a comment but you can get the idea.

        Peak oil is out of the closet, has pretty much destroyed the EU economy. Too bad, I liked Europe when I was there.

    2. enicar333

      OH please, kind Sir, come to Racine and partake of our squalor.

      710 8th St. – asking $9,999. City assessed at: $51,000

      All taxes paid up to date, minor fire damage, owned as a rental.

      Soon – abandoned houses will be available for $1 to Police and Fire people if the proposal is taken up, and they are willing to live in a crime ridden neighborhood.

      Pick from many in Racine where values only decline. http://www.doperalskirealty.com/content.php

      You can also view many of the board-ups in the fine City of Racine. If you’ve paid more than $20,000 – you’ve been taken by a Realtor. View the “Slums of Racine” Click on the link – then choose details for medium size photos and captions, or slideshow for full size. Clicking on a photo in medium size will show links, if available. In some I show sale price vs. assessed value.
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/unisexcar/

      1. Mr. Roboto

        I suppose a lot of it really depends on what city you’re talking about. I know rent is high in the Milwaukee area, so that makes it difficult for me to believe that real estate prices here have been declining to the extent they appear to be in Racine.

      2. enicar333

        Milwaukee is advertising here – in Racine – for workers. I think the problem is: The NEW lower wages they can pay create a situation where you can’t live in that Community, and must come from outside. Conversely, as gas prices increase, it will destroy the ability of workers from lower cost of living areas to be able to drive to jobs in higher cost of living areas.

        WHAT A PROBLEM. People will starve in a land of plenty – there is work to be done, but no one can afford to get to the job, or pay the price at which the job is profitable. The jobs disappear, the money disappears, then the people disappear!

        SO – you are right.

  2. jb

    Stockman: ‘We’re stalled, stuck.’

    Steve: ‘What matters is the degree to which the collateral worth of enterprises can be enlarged so that debts can be taken on against them by their entrepreneur-owners.’

    In summary, we are indeed ‘stuck’ if enterprises canNOT be enlarged so that debts can be taken on. The ‘entrepreneur’ is codespeak for enterprises that are stuck and desperately need bailouts / subsidies to stay alive (corporations are people, ya know).

    Stockman’s message has a Siren song quality to it. Thanks for keeping us off the rocks, Steve.

  3. steve from virginia Post author

    Once on the debt treadmill there is no getting off.

    It is possible to manage debt so that the amount taken on is stable (consider, the money supply component). Instead, debt has been an enabler of energy consumption: the massive increase in debt taken on for zero-return.

    1. Mr. Roboto

      Yep. Because what would happen if *all* the debt got paid off? *All* the money would go bye-bye! Of course, since people and social entities have to keep taking on debt to enable the expansion upon which a system of debt-based money depends, at some point it becomes difficult to keep that expansion stable, and debt super-saturation sets in. So people then need to be totally focussed on paying off at least a substantial portion of their massive debts. That’s when money-velocity slows considerably and deflation starts kicking in.

    2. Reverse Engineer

      “It is possible to manage debt so that the amount taken on is stable (consider, the money supply component). Instead, debt has been an enabler of energy consumption: the massive increase in debt taken on for zero-return.”-Steve

      While I agree with the second part of your statement, I do not agree with the first part. Debt has never been stable, even prior to the Age of Oil and mass energy consumption. Kings, Nations and Individuals alike have all foundered on debt addiction regardless of what the resource base that debt was being used to distribute out. Not to mention that the moment you drop an interest charge on debt the system must perpetually grow in order to pay off the interest. It has to keep expanding, which of course is not stability, its expansion. Without an interest charge on debt, there is no point to issuing it out, you can’t make money with money.

      Monetary systems based on Debt repeatedly collapse, they always have, and the intervals are well known also. They run anywhere from 40 to 80 years or so depending on the average real interest rate and the rate of expansion of the system.

      Anyhow, you must have a resource base upon which to be issuing out the credit, be it control over land and the food resource or control over Oil wells and the energy resource. If you either lose control over these resources or they simply run out, issuing debt becomes a meaningless exercise. There is nothing to buy with it.

      RE
      http://doomsteaddiner.org

      1. steve from virginia Post author

        Finance is never too old to learn a new trick, RE. That includes managing debt properly.

        I was firmly on the side of the unmanageable debt football team until I stumbled across an article by Steve Randy Waldman who noted the risk-free asset has some valuable (pay attention to the word value) characteristics (these are perceived but a risk-free asset is itself a matter of perception).

        I wrote about it somewhere and it also can be had on his site. He didn’t do a follow-up so the idea is sitting out there waiting to be developed further. The reason I like it is because it would give finance a job. Keeping mind that functioning since the days of kings and whatnot is a pretty long time-frame. Finance could perform useful tasks in the real world other than enriching a handful of gangsters.

        Useful tasks like paying people not to own cars, not to get sick or not have children. It can do that b/c it pays people to own cars, get sick and have children now at an unsupportable (as you point out) loss.

      2. Reverse Engineer

        You’ll have to elaborate some on what a “risk-free” asset is. As far as giving Finance a worthwhile Job, I’m not sure you can ever get a leopard to change its spots. It is at its root a con game, sleight of hand to enable the ownership paradigm to continue onward.

        RE

      3. Reverse Engineer

        Read it, and I will work up a response. However, if you have been following DD, you know I am currently on the Mexican Broder getting my Teeth fixed and doing a Travelogue on DD, so writing time is currently consumed with this.

        When are you going to show up on DD and chip in? You show up on TAE dropping Pearls of Wisdom there! Zero Hedge too! What am I, Choped Liver here? DD is too Small Time for you? What? I am INSULTED! LOL.

        RE
        http://www.doomsteaddiner.org

  4. Mr. Roboto

    Well, when our very money itself is based on debt-expansion, then debt is going to expand and expand and expand, isn’t it?

  5. enicar333

    “How does it all end? How it is ending already: the little people refuse to pay, refuse to perform as trained seals for the rich. Consequently, the rate of credit expansion slows and deflation takes hold. As debt unravels so does wealth … whether it is virtuous or not. ”

    Here in my corner of Wisconsin all governments are borrowing and coming up with all sorts of plans for borrowing more. TIF (Tax Incremential FInancing) Districts to build more apartment and retail space in a City that has a glut of vacancies of both, NSP (Neighborhood Stabilization Program) of building new homes and renovating others in the ghettos, New roofs , HVAC, doors, carpets and drapes ($1M borrowed) for a Festival Hall that loses money, expansion of health care benefits to Domestic Partners, and the incessant cries for High Speed rail to Madison WI. and a KRM (Kenosha, Racine, Milwaukee) railline to replace the North Shore Line the Politicians ripped out years ago.

    People here can’t even pay their energy bills, everyday the paper is filled with foreclosures, and it’s whispered that S.C. Johnson is leaving town. Crime is up, up, and away! Space Available is the most popular store front in town – but debt service went up from 20% to 23% of budget – SO WE’RE RICH!

  6. Ross

    “As debt unravels so does wealth … whether it is virtuous or not.”

    The rub.

    This debt-wealth has to last a generation longer. The Boomers are the present majority demographic voting block. Everything is being cobbled back together for their benefit. We have a demographic transition underway. You know what the say about demographics. FOR-E, wait, no. Destiny.

    1. p01

      Already the resentment palpable, and frictions start appearing in the same family between generations (grandchildren vs boomers). I personally know 3 families where Merc/Lexus-driving-all-year-long & vacationing-in-the-sunny-islands “because we deserve it for working so darn hard” grandparents (that really don’t have the slightest clue what’s going on) are being almost spit upon by their grandchildren (who don’t yet realize just how bad things are and how much they have been enslaved). This will end with big campfires and deranged chantings.

      1. Mr. Roboto

        The astrologer in me fears that the Pluto in Scorpio Generation (born between 1984-1996) is going to prove to be the *wrong* generation to have so deliberately and completely wronged.

      2. Ross

        As a card-carrying member of said generation, I agree that the consequences for the Boomers will be severe.

      3. Mr. Roboto

        As a Gen-Xer, I feel as though I should get a t-shirt that says, “I’m SORRY, and I DIDN’T WANT things to be that way!”

        BTW, I *so* respect you guys for being the least homophobic generation in US history!

      4. enicar333

        In today’s political debate we were reminded by one candidate that it will be the homosexuals that will save Racine.

        The candidate is speaking in reference to the recent action of the Common Council granting Domestic Partner Benefits to all same-sex couples – thereby discriminating against opposite sex couples:

        “Ultimately I hope it may actually benefit my district because it may help attact same-sex couples who are interested in purchasing homes in our historic district, which helps boost home prices and improve our tax base.”

        If they don’t save our City, well, Fish Farms will:

        “The first step will be the technology, Dickert said, noting that Wisconsin, as well as Purdue University in Indiana, already have people who can get to work on the science.

        “Fish farms have problems with disease. We will need to find a process or technology that does not allow for diseases,” he said. “Then it’s getting the investors involved. Right now we are moving very efficiently.”

        If everything works out it will mean more jobs and opportunities for Racine, Dickert said.

        “It may not bring 3,000 jobs, but if we can create a 1,000 jobs or a couple hundred jobs, and create a healthy food source for the city it is worth it,” he said.”

        Read more: http://www.journaltimes.com/news/local/fish-farming-idea-gains-support-at-conference-dickert-says-approval/article_19889b36-6c38-11e1-81da-001871e3ce6c.html#ixzz1ovyClqwm

        I am of the firm opinion that Peak Oil is not a problem, the problem is Peak Stupidity, to which Peak Oil is actually a solution.

  7. Reverse Engineer

    “Talk about being on the right street-corner at the right time! Who knows who this Mulally character is, no doubt another rent-an-executive who migrates from company to company borrowing massive paydays for himself.”Steve

    Close. He comes from that other highly profitable industry, Aviation.

    From Wiki:

    “Alan Roger Mulally (born August 4, 1945) is an American engineer and business executive who is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Ford Motor Company. Ford, which had been struggling during the late-2000s recession, returned to profitability under Mulally and was the only American major car manufacturer to avoid government-sponsored bankruptcy.[3][4]

    Mulally was previously executive vice president of Boeing and the CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA). He began his career with Boeing as an engineer in 1969 and was largely credited with BCA’s resurgence against Airbus in the mid-2000s.[5]”

    Today’s Feature on DD, “Parsing the Middle East”
    http://www.doomsteaddiner.org/blog/2012/03/09/parsing-the-middle-east/

    RE

  8. The Dork of Cork

    Got to love the death tolerance thingy – its true you can’t make radiation sexy – its so insidious I guess.
    But there are risks in all human activities – including non activity.
    Maybe the French opening up its non sexy ancient regional lines closed to pay for its sexy 1980s TGV lines is a good thing.
    Here’s another tram train line that will reopen in 2013 – its significant because of its length(64Km) and rural nature linking a 12,850 pop town with subsequent connections to Rennes.
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Châteaubriant.
    The new / old line will have 6 suburban stops and 3 village /town stops before it reaches Chateaubriant and its previously sleepy train station , sleepy since 1980 when the line to Nantes was closed
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJ_Jx34gJJE

    If this project is successful I would imagine the French Bureaucracy / local authorties will begin to continue to return the 100+ similar lines taken out of service during the post war period.
    Maybe they want to earn interest income out of the surplus oil they once again want to give to the periphery – can’t see how they can beat North Sea depletion though.
    Still I find it strangely comforting……….. spent too much of my time in France me thinks.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YoSBIEsMG5w

    Can see France going from a 50%+ self suff to perhaps 60% because of this while Germany despite having more resourses languishing in the 40% zone.
    Incidentally this Tram train concept was originally a German idea but they seem to want to continue putting the bulk of their resourses into making other people poorer via their mercantile games.
    Although France has been beaten down by the Bastards in the Council it still has some memory reflex actions remaining from its Gaullist years – but its not enough.

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