Iceland’s Hörður Torfason – How to Beat the Banksters

December 11, 2012 | By | 18 Replies More

Alex Pietrowski, Staff Writer
Waking Times

The tiny Nordic European island country of iceland is presently experiencing one of the greatest economic comebacks of all time.  After the privatization of the banking sector completed in 200o, the economy was thrown into a tailspin when over a five year period,  private bankers borrowed 120 billion dollars (10 times the size of Iceland’s economy). A huge economic bubble was created, causing house prices to double, and making a small percentage of Iceland’s population rich enough to buy up overseas investments, mansions, yachts, and private jets, while leaving an absolutely un-payable debt for all Icelanders. Iceland was facing national bankruptcy.

In response to the failed banking system, in October 2008, Iceland’s revolution against this financial tyranny began, rather casually in the street, in front of the Icelandic general assembly.

In the duration of five months, the main bank of Iceland was nationalized, government officials were forced to resign, the old government was liquidated, and a new government was put in its place. By March 2010, Iceland’s people voted to deny payment of the 3,500 million Euro debt created by the bankers, and about 200 high-level executives and bankers responsible for the economic crisis in the country were either arrested or were facing criminal charges.

In February 2011, a new constitutional assembly settled in to rewrite the tiny nation’s constitution, which aimed to avoid entrapment by debt-based currency foreign loans. In 2012, Iceland’s economy is expected to outgrow the Euro and the average for the developed world, as estimated by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

This video clip from the film Inside Job gives some background on what caused the financial crisis in Iceland.

So how does a revolution like this take root and activate a citizenry to effectively respond to grand scale economic theft by bankers and politicians?

Hörður Torfason, a lifelong activist from Iceland, is credited with organizing the Icelandic ‘Kitchenware Revolution’, beginning with a simple vigil in front of parliament aimed at educating passersby and ridiculing the blatant crimes of the elite who worked there. When the foreign financial community (the IMF and the European Union) pressured Iceland’s Parliament to pass laws dictating repayment of debts privately incurred by bankers, the revolution was formally ignited and nearly turned violent when some Icelanders began throwing rocks at the capital, attempting to pressure the government for redress.

Torfason and his supporters knew that a non-violent approach would be more effective, and formed a “human wall” of clearly marked orange-vested citizens between angry rock-throwers and the police line. Torfason believed that in order for a movement to be effective, one must use reason and information, as well as peaceful demonstrations, to send a strong message to politicians that the people refuse to pay the bankers’ debts.

The end result of the peaceful resistance to economic tyranny is a model for all Western nations who are currently being gutted by a totally corrupt banking system.

This story is much different than what has happened in the US since the banking crisis began in 2008. Large “bailouts” were granted to the bankers, and none of the responsible parties have faced criminal prosecution. And it appears that we are still at the mercy of the currency cartel and the dollar faces total destruction.

In Iceland, the prime minister was indicted, over 200 criminal charges were filed against the bankers, and all of the former CEOs of the 3 biggest banks were arrested. The new government supported citizens by passing a banking remittance that forgave debt exceeding 110% of home values. As a result, “banks have forgiven loans equivalent to 13 percent of gross domestic product, easing the debt burdens of more than a quarter of the population.” (source: Bloomberg.com)

Yes, the country continued to struggle economically after the 2008 revolution. But already today Iceland is thriving, with 2.9% growth in the economy in 2011, and 2.4% estimated by the OECD for 2012 and 2013.

“The lesson to be learned from Iceland’s crisis is that if other countries think it’s necessary to write down debts, they should look at how successful the 110 percent agreement was here. It’s the broadest agreement that’s been undertaken.” – Thorolfur Matthiasson, an economics professor at the University of Iceland in Reykjavik (source: Bloomberg.com)

“This is about our life and the future of the children, of the generations, of the young people.” – Hörður Torfason (source: http://vimeo.com/25824717)

Can America hold out for a banking miracle like Iceland’s and somehow muster the fortitude to demand an end to economic corruption? Perhaps Hörður Torfason is available to help get American mobilized.

Resources:

Meltdown Iceland: Lessons on the World Financial Crisis from a Small Bankrupt Island by Roger Boyes
Inside Job movie by Matt Damon

Sources:

http://www.alternet.org/world/how-gay-rights-maverick-helped-topple-icelands-government

http://vimeo.com/25824717

http://crazyemailsandbackstories.wordpress.com/2012/05/12/icelands-amazing-peaceful-revolution-still-not-in-the-news-backstory/
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/08/01/1001662/-Iceland-s-On-going-Revolution
http://www.alternet.org/newsandviews/article/964401/cenk_uygur%3A_iceland_shows_bailing_out_middle_class_works%2C_not_bailing_out_banks/
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-20/icelandic-anger-brings-record-debt-relief-in-best-crisis-recovery-story.html

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Category: Activism, All Original Articles, Contributors, Culture, History, Ideas, Law & Punishment, Money, Revolution, Society, Staff, Uncategorized, Video

Comments (18)

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  1. Lorin says:

    I wish this had happened in America. The problem here is, we have too many banksters in the government, looking out for their own kind. The ones who are not banksters have been bought by the banking industry with political contributions. There are a few exceptions, but only a few.

    We need to invite Hörður Torfason to come here and teach us a few things.
    Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

    • Berdenia says:

      It can happen here. When the people come together & they are FINALLY waking up to the Obamacare fraud, and the Socialist agenda we can FIRE the Banksters, and restart this Nation & fire every single one in government…We have over 300 million weapons in this Nation, and they think we are going to go away…they are in for a SHOCK!!!!! It’s not over by a LONG SHOT!!!!

  2. HOW TO WIN THE WAR ON ROTHSCHILDS says:

    the only way out of this is to get rid of the ROTHSCHILDS, and their megalopoly over all central banks, aka as DEBT USURY!!!

    and abolish ZIONISM at the same time, because that’s what is driving this bullshit.

  3. Yes, we need so much help, but the right people have been, as you say, bought off in our now totally fascist government, from the top down to the local level and I fear for us all, we the (little) people that is. I read that we would need about 1000 lawyers to truly counter this utter destruction of America we all grew up with, now that TPTB only need us for military meat and nothing more in their world empire building and absconding to “undisclosed locations” world-wide. There are now over 3,000,000 former Americans in Uruguay alone who absconded with eg. tax cuts from Bush that were the Social Security fund, and now QE3 to pay for the malfeasance of WS derivatives (CDOs and MBSs) which were “somehow” allowed to be fully insured by the FDIC ! There are simply so many bad things going on it will be a miracle if we survive as a nation IMO.

    • Bill says:

      AmeriKa is Facist!!
      We are a Judaic Plutocracy, marxist at it core.

      Fascism is about A nation and A people; it is Not communistic or internationalist.
      The fascist state is geared to Serve the host people & traditional culture and characterized by a homognous thnic grop-Spain, Italy, Germany.
      JE W s & Commies Not Welcome!
      International banks (fleece the nation) are not permitted under fascism.

      NOTHING INTERNATIONAL is permitted in fascism.
      Fascism is Nationalist and Marxism is INTERNATIONALIST.
      Fascism supports religion & recognizes God,
      Marxism= Atheistic & de facto worships the state/ J E Ws.

      Fascist Nationalism is the Arch nemesis of Judeo Marxist Bolshevism, which seeks to strip all NON J E Ws (Goyim-attle) from their assets and livelihood and transfer it TO
      J E Ws, and to destroy the White race itself.
      J E Ws & Philo Semite Shills like Celente give Fascism a dirty word connotation, but it neednt be.
      Facism asks IS it Good for the Nation, RATHER than Is it good

      • Anonymous says:

        Fascism is no answer. Note that Iceland’s recovery had nothing to do with fascism.
        Fascism is an unholy alliance between capital and government – the people’s welfare and happiness are no more considered in fascism than in capitalism.
        What’s needed are good, moral people at all levels of society. The change begins in our hearts.

  4. Bill says:

    Sorry, Correction please (email & Typos)

    AmeriKa is NOT Facist!!
    We are a Judaic Plutocracy, Marxist at it core.

    Fascism= A nation and A people; it is Not Communistic or Internationalist.
    The fascist state is geared to Serve the Host people & traditional culture and characterized by a homognous ethnic group-Spain, Italy, Germany.
    JE W s & Commies Not Welcome!
    International banks (fleece the nation) are not permitted under fascism.
    NOTHING INTERNATIONAL is permitted in fascism.
    Fascism is Nationalist and Marxism is INTERNATIONALIST.
    Fascism supports religion & recognizes God,
    Marxism= Atheistic & de facto worships the state/ J E Ws.

    Fascist Nationalism is the Arch nemesis of Judeo Marxist Bolshevism, which seeks to strip all NON J E Ws (Goyim-cattle) from their assets & livelihood and transfer it TO
    J E Ws, and to destroy the White race itself.
    J E Ws & Philo Semite Shills like Celente give Fascism a dirty word connotation, but it neednt be.
    Facism asks IS it Good for the Nation, RATHER than Is it good for Jewry.

  5. G Street says:

    Several important differences between us and Iceland:

    1) Geography. Our country is too big for masses of people to remain outside the seat of government until it meets their demands. If you live in California and have a family to care for, you can’t afford to go get arrested in Washington.

    2) Media. Related to geography, we rely on communication channels that were long ago co-opted. The most extreme example of this is the “fiscal cliff” in which two absurd positions have an ersatz battle over outcomes that heads-or-tails provide no solution, no relief to the people. Instead of representative government, the mealy-mouthed traitors of Washington simply proclaim that our interests weren’t on their table.

    3) Corruption. Related to the above, the central problem is that money has replaced citizenship. The State is no longer expected to function for the people. It auctions us off daily. Even the Supreme Court is unable to admit that if money is speech – more accurately the power to legislate – then people without money must do without. In other words, the Court has upheld (written, really) law that limits the speech of ordinary people. That otherwise bright people in Washington can convince themselves that they are not the problem is central to the corruption. Their lack of critical reflection lets them ignore that not only did they facilitate financial crime, they also weakened the rule of law. The common term for this is “corruption.”

    In Iceland the people took their message to their government and demanded it be subordinate to their will. We have lost our identity (not a coincidence), lost our ability to speak on our own behalf, and lost our government to profiteers and internationalists. How can we win the battle won in Iceland when we don’t have the tools of democracy?

    Giving up is not an option. So we should also ridicule those who accept the corrupt state as normal, challenge the media at every turn – maybe more anchors will resign on air. Wearing some recognizable symbol would help us recognize our strength in numbers. Voting both party’s scum from office, boycotts, strikes, protests… it seems against overwhelming odds that we try to gain a critical mass that cannot be ignored, when, unfortunately it seems it can always be ignored. If all else fails they can start another war.

    We need 1) money out of government, 2) response-able media, and 3) an end to financial tyranny. This would create an economy that works for all. The one thing we can do is not let them distract us from accomplishing real and lasting changes like they did in Iceland.

  6. Steve says:

    to Bill – A good healthy nationalism in not fascism, which is an unholy alliance between capitalists, military and state. Fascism cares no more about the peoples welfare and happiness than does tin-pot so-called marxists.
    Note that the Icelandic recovery had NOTHING to do with fascism.
    Fascists will tell you of course that everything they do is ‘for the nation’ while they eliminate free expression, spy on citizens, and send you off to foreign wars.
    What’s needed are good and moral citizens in all levels of society.
    The revolution starts in our hearts.

  7. B J Street says:

    The only real revolution is Equality, but Civilization is built on the Hierarchy of Rewards, and there is still just enough normalcy around to keep populations complacent. Economic equality is Sufficiency, the realization that the balance between blind ambition/greed and abject poverty is a Reasonable Share of resources freely available as the common-ground of a culture of benign co-existence, not craving the so-called rewards of compliance with an economic exploitation that puts a price on all human activity.

  8. Tomas says:

    I’m not sure what equality is being discussed. Equal opportunity, or equal outcomes?

    The result in Iceland could happen here, if: our “representatives” were beholden to us, not bankers and other special (read: we want something we are sooooo not entitled to, and we want someone else to pay for it). A simple law, as opposed to 2 k page missives that mean nothing, that balances budgets each year, caps taxes at a reasonable rate, applied equally to all in the country, equal justice… The list would be long. End govt subsidies of everything. Force public colleges to cut tuition 75% immediately (since they are largely funded with public money, the can always choose not to accept it and keep prices high). Simply living within our means would lead to so,much prosperity for everyone.

  9. Anon says:

    We can beat them in MANY, MANY WAYS!

    The QUIET or SILENT Revolution:
    Removing your money out of any TBTF Bank is ONE thing that you can do. However, there are many, many other things that we all can do, too!

    Here are just a few:

    1) BOYCOTT – learn this concept well, and EMPLOY IT – against those enslaving you!
    http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_26620.cfm
    2) THINK for yourself. TURN OFF the IDIOT-BOX (TV) OR THROW IT AWAY! READ! USE YOUR BRAIN MUSCLE!
    3) QUESTION all ‘authority’ (Big Business/Government, Big Religion, Big Media, etc.)
    http://www.lulu.com/shop/john-hamer/the-falsification-of-history-our-distorted-reality/paperback/product-20051585.html
    4) Get out, and/or stay out, of DEBT!
    5) USE CASH AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE. Avoid using credit, debit, and customer loyalty cards, that track your purchases
    6) Bank at a local credit union!
    7) VOTE WITH YOUR DOLLARS! (What do you support, with your time, energy, attention and money?) (Buy true ORGANIC, & MADE IN USA!)
    8) Contact your Representatives on critical issues: such as “END THE FED!”
    9) Re-read the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It isn’t about hunting. It’s about government tyranny, and protecting yourself from it. THAT is why BIG GOVERNMENT wants to take away your guns!
    10)Buy (products) Made in U.S.A. IF you are still buying Christmas cards, for example, that were Made in China – at WalMart – then, you are part of America’s problem!
    11)Invest in precious metals, primarily SILVER (and gold) bullion
    http://libertycpm.com/silver/
    12)Buy ORGANIC food! Support your local Organic food store or Co-op! Support the true HEROES of organic food production (on the right side, of the following poster: http://www.cornucopia.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/prop37-poster3.jpeg)
    13)Start your own garden using NON-GMO, non-hybrid seeds!
    http://www.mypatriotsupply.com/
    14)Pray or meditate – reduce your stress! Stress weakens your immune system, which opens your body to attack by free radicals, viruses
    15)Read a book, you know, an actual book! Open your mind!
    http://www.lulu.com/shop/john-hamer/the-falsification-of-history-our-distorted-reality/paperback/product-20051585.html
    16)Exercise your brain muscle!
    17)Listen to soothing classical, jazz, ambient or other music you thoroughly enjoy!
    18)CUT BACK ON OIL AND GAS CONSUMPTION!
    19)Take a high-quality daily multi-vitamin

    EXPAND THIS LIST AND SHARE IT WITH EVERYONE YOU KNOW!

  10. Steve B says:

    This could be done everywhere. If white people ruled the western countries. But the Jews control the banks. Iceland is a small country and that is how they do it. A large country like the USA it won’t be near as easy. Smaller countries would benefit the world. You couldn’t get people to fight in wars like they do

  11. paul says:

    Try a Credit Union.
    i will always love you ICELAND, the Land of Fire and Ice.

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