The City Center, the 'hub of the world'. If ever there was a conspiracy, the City of London would be it. What would be very interesting, besides opening the books on the Cities assets, such as their land holdings, and ownership relationships, would be to explore the subterranean architecture of the City itself.
The 'hub' is more a hub than almost anyone could imagine, I would liken it more to a base of operations that has exotic linkages to locations around the world. An underground network arrayed with transport systems and communications technology that would be recognized as science fiction. The population of the City is only 9,000, though it employs over 300,000 people during working hours. Of this 9,000 residents there is a hierarchy of power, and within the hierarchy are inner groups whose access to technologies largely unheard of allow them to maintain their status of power and economic control. The inner groups form a complex, theirs is a world apart from the consensus reality being broadcast by the world corporate media, they live in a social structure vastly different than those just several miles away.
Whatever I call them, their reign of power is consolidating now, and as a result they are partially exposing themselves. It is becoming obvious to more people that they ('The City') are the center of power, and as a King collects from his subjects, the City collects from the citizens in the form of sanitized usury - credit issuance. And as the people leverage up with consumer credit to buy houses, cars and other consumer items, the economic reach of the corporate empire must of necessity expand, while the outer rings of society fall as the exponential nature of usury asserts itself. While the periphery burns in economic rejection, the center consolidates, squeezing ever harder as the credit supply is forced to contract, production collapses and scarcity ensues. This pattern will reassert itself with increasing frequency, as the pie of wealth shrinks, and concentrates.
Though attention is being brought to bear on the City, the hired PR staff is on the job, and the inner core remains very much hidden.
Bloomberg Video - London Lord Mayor Stands Up for U.K.'s Financial Center
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March 12 (Bloomberg) -- When money needs to talk in London, it’s the lord mayor who speaks.
Nick Anstee, the 682nd mayor of the U.K. capital’s financial district, is battling politicians from all parties who blame the bankers and brokers he represents for wrecking the country’s economy. Taxpayers assumed more than 800 billion pounds ($1.2 trillion) of liabilities to bail out financial firms, and an election must be held by June.
“The taxpayer doesn’t understand how critical the financial services industry is to them,” Anstee, 51, said in an interview at his 252-year-old Mansion House residence opposite the Bank of England. “This absolutely overwhelming tide of negative attitudes has been brought about in taxpayers’ minds.”
The lord mayor is an “invisible power” who Britons don’t recognize as the representative of the banks they bailed out, said London Metropolitan University politics lecturer Maurice Glasman.
“The bailout made the invisibles visible in a really disturbing way,” said Glasman, 49, walking in front of the City’s six century-old Guildhall a few streets away from Mansion House. “This is the invisible heart of an invisible City that protects invisible earnings.”
In 1968, the Bank of England started the Committee on Invisible Exports to promote finance. It was renamed British Invisibles, and is now International Financial Services London.
Lord mayors travel with the rank of cabinet minister and host annual dinners for the prime minister and chancellor. Their speeches to the U.K. premier from 2003 to 2009 called for low taxes, limits to regulation and easier visa requirements for foreigners. The first lord mayor was named in 1189.
The lord mayor has a “unique platform” to influence politics, said Bob Wigley, the former chairman of Merrill Lynch & Co.’s European unit. Wigley led a review of the City’s competitiveness as a financial center for Mayor Johnson.
Guests at the City banquet in Mansion House on Sept. 22 dined on smoked fish and filet of beef and Madeira syrup. They drank Chablis and Chateau Moulin a Vent wines and toasted Britain’s financial services industry as well as the queen.
Barclays Plc Chairman Marcus Agius, former Lloyds Banking Group Plc Chairman Victor Blank, BT Group Plc Chairman Michael Rake and Financial Services Authority Chairman Adair Turner were on the table plan.
“It’s counter-productive to compete with each other to think of ways to punish the City,” Anstee told Business Secretary Peter Mandelson and 350 guests in Mansion House’s Great Egyptian Hall. “I am challenging each of Britain’s political parties to commit publicly to growth.”
Supporting the City is politically difficult, Mandelson said. His Labour Party government last year imposed a one-time levy on bankers’ bonuses.
“People who are losing their own jobs find it jarring when many in the City are reported as having had a good year,” Mandelson said.
As head of the City of London Corporation, the area around St. Paul’s Cathedral whose boundary is marked by dragon motifs and statues, lord mayors lead a local police force and travel 90 days a year to promote financial services. Anstee has visited the U.S., Dubai and Saudi Arabia and will travel to South Africa, India, China, Russia and other countries.
The City’s focus on money has led to its local population dwindling to 9,000, while about 320,000 workers arrive each weekday. Uniquely in the U.K., companies as well as individuals vote for City representatives.
From the Baltic Exchange for shipping to the Lloyd’s of London insurance market and the London Metal Exchange, the legacy of centuries of global British trade and finance lives on in the City, championed by the lord mayor.
“The City of London has definitely represented the interests of money over a very long time,” said Glasman, standing in the square built over the gladiatorial amphitheater of London’s Roman founders.
In history, some challengers to the City did so at their peril. King Charles I failed to get the City to expand its boundaries to include new populations. He was beheaded in 1649.
More than three centuries later, the challenge to explain and justify the City’s focus on capitalism remains.
“One of the biggest risks following the banking crisis is the development of an unhealthy attitude towards business and open markets in general,” Mandelson told Anstee at Mansion House. “I realize talking about trust probably sounds rich coming from a politician. Let’s just say: I feel your pain.”