The gates of Hell are thrown open...

An introduction for the uninitiated of the very often misunderstood belief of Satanism

Satanism. Even today, the very word strikes a note of avid concern and furrows the brow of even some of the most contemporary and supposedly unorthodox minds. And if anyone thinks I am writing this to allay any fears people might have they would be terribly mistaken. The fact is Satanism, for many, is indeed something to be feared. But it does not find its source of power in those laughable caricatures presented for public consumption by a variety of pious maniacs intent on filling their own coffers by preying on the paltry fears of the more feeble minded within society and a media that has, at times, been all too eager to spread the gospel of lurid, lascivious and nefarious tales of Satanic ritual abuse.

I simply do not have either the space or the inclination here to waste time demolishing the moronic claims that Satanism is an international conspiracy of evil psychopaths intent on destroying the planet and enslaving the masses through drug abuse and the sacrifice of children and animals. Those absurd charges have already been lambasted – no less than by the FBI, who in 20 years of investigations have publicly stated that they have never found a scrap of evidence to back up these claims. In fact, it’s rather a shame they had to waste such an inordinate amount of time foraging around in a quagmire of “evidence” born only in the minds of the mentally ill, when they could have been out doing what they are paid to do – locking up those less palatable members of the human race who’s business it is to thrive at the expense of everyone else.

So what is Satanism? Satanism is a religion that accepts man as he most naturally is. Our philosophy is one of elitism, whereby the strong rule over the weak and the productive over the wastrel through a process of Social Darwinism that occurs as a consequence of stratification. The compounding effect of egalitarianism has provided a firm foundation for the abysmal propagation of the parasite. Counter measures are long over due. Satanism espouses justice. And that extends to upholding the principle that only a meritocracy can truly serve the human race. In nature there is a pecking order and higher resources must not be drained by the wilfully less effective who are happy to sit at the bottom of the ladder and drain everyone else like a bloodsucker. No one is suggesting greasing the rungs. The strong stratify themselves, pull themselves up by their own boot-straps and pick themselves up again when they get knocked down – they seek to attain the sweet fruits of indulgence found on the higher plateaus of human endeavour.

Satan, to the Satanist, is an archetype symbolising the inherent nature of man and our acceptance of this brutal philosophy that governs us as a species. To this extent we are atheistic, adopting this mantel as the ultimate figure of pride, rebellion and human excellence.

So as you see, worship and sacrifice are not a part of our rationale; since we do not uphold a deity to bow down to. It has been said that we worship ourselves in the sense that our own egos provide the only bench-mark through which we seek to gratify our desires, pursuing our goals and furthering our own lives through the passionate application of our individual proclivities. For us, there is no hope of reward in some intangible afterlife - here and now is the only opportunity.

Dr. Elmer Gates (1853 – 1923), the eminent research psychologist made specific reference to the importance of individual development, referring to such persons as “a world worker.” He said: “a person whose genius or other predilection is contributory to the development of any science, art, philosophy or religion as a lifework, having accepted his mission and administering it for the world’s weal and his own happiness – he is a world worker.” Satanists are world workers. Satanists are people who can do things. You might be a factory owner, unbeknownst to you the young man who sweeps your floors might be a Satanist. He would certainly never bother you with the fact – but you can be sure you’d have the best swept floors in any factory you can think of. You’d better hold on to that young man because you can be sure he won’t be sweeping floors forever. And you can be just as sure he will apply himself effectively in anything he undertakes.

For those who haven’t yet read The Satanic Bible, Satanic philosophy can be encapsulated in The 9 Satanic Statements (copyright Anton Szandor LaVey 1969):

1: Satan represents indulgence, instead of abstinence!

2: Satan represents vital existence, instead of spiritual pipe dreams!

3: Satan represents undefiled wisdom, instead of hypocritical self-deceit!

4: Satan represents kindness to those who deserve it, rather than love wasted on ingrates!

5: Satan represents vengeance, instead of turning the other cheek!

6: Satan represents responsibility to the responsible, instead of concern for psychic vampires!

7: Satan represents man as just another animal, sometimes better, more often worse than those that walk on all fours, who, because of his “divine spiritual and intellectual development” has become the most vicious animal of all!

8: Satan represents all of the so-called sins, as they all lead to physical, mental or emotional gratification!

9: Satan has been the best friend the church has ever had, as he has kept it in business all these years!

So there you have it. And if evil they brand us, then evil we are! But as you see, there is no element of Devil worship in our credo. Satan is quite simply a symbol of man living as his nature dictates and remaining the final arbiter of his own destiny.

Umberto Ray is predominantly known as a poet and his work has appeared in magazines and anthologies around the world. His first book, The Blood In My Veins, was published in 2005. He has been a CoS member for several years and was ordained into its priesthood on Walpurgisnacht, 2007.
Getty
Show Hide image

We're racing towards another private debt crisis - so why did no one see it coming?

The Office for Budget Responsibility failed to foresee the rise in household debt. 

This is a call for a public inquiry on the current situation regarding private debt.

For almost a decade now, since 2007, we have been living a lie. And that lie is preparing to wreak havoc on our economy. If we do not create some kind of impartial forum to discuss what is actually happening, the results might well prove disastrous. 

The lie I am referring to is the idea that the financial crisis of 2008, and subsequent “Great Recession,” were caused by profligate government spending and subsequent public debt. The exact opposite is in fact the case. The crash happened because of dangerously high levels of private debt (a mortgage crisis specifically). And - this is the part we are not supposed to talk about—there is an inverse relation between public and private debt levels.

If the public sector reduces its debt, overall private sector debt goes up. That's what happened in the years leading up to 2008. Now austerity is making it happening again. And if we don't do something about it, the results will, inevitably, be another catastrophe.

The winners and losers of debt

These graphs show the relationship between public and private debt. They are both forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility, produced in 2015 and 2017. 

This is what the OBR was projecting what would happen around now back in 2015:

This year the OBR completely changed its forecast. This is how it now projects things are likely to turn out:

First, notice how both diagrams are symmetrical. What happens on top (that part of the economy that is in surplus) precisely mirrors what happens in the bottom (that part of the economy that is in deficit). This is called an “accounting identity.”

As in any ledger sheet, credits and debits have to match. The easiest way to understand this is to imagine there are just two actors, government, and the private sector. If the government borrows £100, and spends it, then the government has a debt of £100. But by spending, it has injected £100 more pounds into the private economy. In other words, -£100 for the government, +£100 for everyone else in the diagram. 

Similarly, if the government taxes someone for £100 , then the government is £100 richer but there’s £100 subtracted from the private economy (+£100 for government, -£100 for everybody else on the diagram).

So what implications does this kind of bookkeeping have for the overall economy? It means that if the government goes into surplus, then everyone else has to go into debt.

We tend to think of money as if it is a bunch of poker chips already lying around, but that’s not how it really works. Money has to be created. And money is created when banks make loans. Either the government borrows money and injects it into the economy, or private citizens borrow money from banks. Those banks don’t take the money from people’s savings or anywhere else, they just make it up. Anyone can write an IOU. But only banks are allowed to issue IOUs that the government will accept in payment for taxes. (In other words, there actually is a magic money tree. But only banks are allowed to use it.)

There are other factors. The UK has a huge trade deficit (blue), and that means the government (yellow) also has to run a deficit (print money, or more accurately, get banks to do it) to inject into the economy to pay for all those Chinese trainers, American iPads, and German cars. The total amount of money can also fluctuate. But the real point here is, the less the government is in debt, the more everyone else must be. Austerity measures will necessarily lead to rising levels of private debt. And this is exactly what has happened.

Now, if this seems to have very little to do with the way politicians talk about such matters, there's a simple reason: most politicians don’t actually know any of this. A recent survey showed 90 per cent of MPs don't even understand where money comes from (they think it's issued by the Royal Mint). In reality, debt is money. If no one owed anyone anything at all there would be no money and the economy would grind to a halt.

But of course debt has to be owed to someone. These charts show who owes what to whom.

The crisis in private debt

Bearing all this in mind, let's look at those diagrams again - keeping our eye particularly on the dark blue that represents household debt. In the first, 2015 version, the OBR duly noted that there was a substantial build-up of household debt in the years leading up to the crash of 2008. This is significant because it was the first time in British history that total household debts were higher than total household savings, and therefore the household sector itself was in deficit territory. (Corporations, at the same time, were raking in enormous profits.) But it also predicted this wouldn't happen again.

True, the OBR observed, austerity and the reduction of government deficits meant private debt levels would have to go up. However, the OBR economists insisted this wouldn't be a problem because the burden would fall not on households but on corporations. Business-friendly Tory policies would, they insisted, inspire a boom in corporate expansion, which would mean frenzied corporate borrowing (that huge red bulge below the line in the first diagram, which was supposed to eventually replace government deficits entirely). Ordinary households would have little or nothing to worry about.

This was total fantasy. No such frenzied boom took place.

In the second diagram, two years later, the OBR is forced to acknowledge this. Corporations are just raking in the profits and sitting on them. The household sector, on the other hand, is a rolling catastrophe. Austerity has meant falling wages, less government spending on social services (or anything else), and higher de facto taxes. This puts the squeeze on household budgets and people are forced to borrow. As a result, not only are households in overall deficit for the second time in British history, the situation is actually worse than it was in the years leading up to 2008.

And remember: it was a mortgage crisis that set off the 2008 crash, which almost destroyed the world economy and plunged millions into penury. Not a crisis in public debt. A crisis in private debt.

An inquiry

In 2015, around the time the original OBR predictions came out, I wrote an essay in the Guardian predicting that austerity and budget-balancing would create a disastrous crisis in private debt. Now it's so clearly, unmistakably, happening that even the OBR cannot deny it.

I believe the time has come for there be a public investigation - a formal public inquiry, in fact - into how this could be allowed to happen. After the 2008 crash, at least the economists in Treasury and the Bank of England could plausibly claim they hadn't completely understood the relation between private debt and financial instability. Now they simply have no excuse.

What on earth is an institution called the “Office for Budget Responsibility” credulously imagining corporate borrowing binges in order to suggest the government will balance the budget to no ill effects? How responsible is that? Even the second chart is extremely odd. Up to 2017, the top and bottom of the diagram are exact mirrors of one another, as they ought to be. However, in the projected future after 2017, the section below the line is much smaller than the section above, apparently seriously understating the amount both of future government, and future private, debt. In other words, the numbers don't add up.

The OBR told the New Statesman ​that it was not aware of any errors in its 2015 forecast for corporate sector net lending, and that the forecast was based on the available data. It said the forecast for business investment has been revised down because of the uncertainty created by Brexit. 

Still, if the “Office of Budget Responsibility” was true to its name, it should be sounding off the alarm bells right about now. So far all we've got is one mention of private debt and a mild warning about the rise of personal debt from the Bank of England, which did not however connect the problem to austerity, and one fairly strong statement from a maverick columnist in the Daily Mail. Otherwise, silence. 

The only plausible explanation is that institutions like the Treasury, OBR, and to a degree as well the Bank of England can't, by definition, warn against the dangers of austerity, however alarming the situation, because they have been set up the way they have in order to justify austerity. It's important to emphasise that most professional economists have never supported Conservative policies in this regard. The policy was adopted because it was convenient to politicians; institutions were set up in order to support it; economists were hired in order to come up with arguments for austerity, rather than to judge whether it would be a good idea. At present, this situation has led us to the brink of disaster.

The last time there was a financial crash, the Queen famously asked: why was no one able to foresee this? We now have the tools. Perhaps the most important task for a public inquiry will be to finally ask: what is the real purpose of the institutions that are supposed to foresee such matters, to what degree have they been politicised, and what would it take to turn them back into institutions that can at least inform us if we're staring into the lights of an oncoming train?