All Power to Brussels and the European Central Bank
By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | SEPTEMBER 12, 2012
A great complement to the decision to enable the European Stability Mechanism could materialize if the government in Brussels gets its way. The European government is now proposing that the European Central Bank should control all banking institutions in the EU. The European Commission wants the ECB to have the power to close or punish banks that do not abide by the rules issued in Brussels by the technocrats who now control the European banking system.
The European Commission proposed on Wednesday to empower the European Central Bank (ECB), that will oversee all eurozone banks beginning in 2014, to remove bank cards and punish non-compliant entities.
Brussels ignores Germany resistance to such power, which wants to limit the power of a single supervisor of larger systemic institutions. The initiative also collides with the reservations in the UK and the countries of Eastern Europe, which fear that the ECB will accumulate too much power while the nations are excluded in the decision making process.
In an attempt to allay these doubts, Brussels makes clear that the rules for the sector will be developed by the European Banking Authority, which lists the 27 member nations. In the first phase, starting in January 2013, the Central Bank will take over banks that have received state aid, thus opening the door for direct recapitalization, the EU plan says.
Then, the ECB will also monitor systemic institutions. By January 1, 2014 it will also be in charge of 6,000 entities that operate in the eurozone. The objective of this initiative, which was presented by the President of the Commission, José Manuel Barroso, in his State of the Union address in the Parliament, is to break the “vicious circle” between sovereign and financial debt and move towards a union bank. This has been the plan all along. The technocrats in Europe have always sought to erode national sovereignty — as explained in our report about the future of nation-states — so that the bankers can later consolidate power and resources, which is their ultimate goal.
“This new system, with the ECB in the center and involving national supervisors, restore confidence in the supervision of all banks in the euro zone,” said Barroso, who has called for a speedy adoption of the proposal so that it can be operational in early 2013. “In the future, the losses of bankers and debt will not become that of citizens, questioning the financial stability of entire countries,” he noted. That is difficult to believe, since the banks who are now posing as saviors were the ones who created most of the debt through fraudulent financial mechanisms.
The creation of a single banking supervisor in the EU is the condition imposed by Germany to allow the bank bailout of 100,000 million euros that the EU granted Spain. This bailout bypassed the state and was not computed as debt. Although n public Germany seems to not support more banker power grabs, in private Angela Merkel is indeed promoting the creation of a new European centralized entity.
The German finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, said in recent days that he wants the ECB to be limited to systemic institutions and intends to maintain control of its regional banks. However, the Commission contends that “as we have seen in recent years, even small banks can be systemic and cause financial turmoil,” as Northern Rock, Anglo Irish and Bankia.
The EU executive said his proposal is the “right balance” between the tasks of the ECB and the national supervisors. The ECB will have the final say in “key” decisions, while the daily work of supervision will remain with national authorities. This aspect is what the German minister of finance had opposed from the beginning. As proposed by Brussels, the ECB is responsible for granting new bank cards or withdrawing them if banks do not comply. Also, Brussels will evaluate major acquisitions and sales, and will require banks to increase their capital if it detects risks.
According to the proposal the EU will share power with the national authorities up until the moment when the EU’s authority for settlement is created. Then, it will be all up to the bankers. In order to perform the functions described above, Brussels will give new powers to the ECB, which may request information from entities and perform field inspections. In addition, it will be entitled to impose fines of up to 10% of its turnover. This last imposition is seen by skeptics as the mechanism for the ECB to fund its operations.