Saturday, August 16, 2014

Vulture battle #GrieFault #GriesaFault

The legal battle between Argentina and the vulture funds is back before the federal appeals court. Argentina and Citigroup have a court appearance scheduled Monday over the blocking of payments Argentina has made to the bank as paying agent for holders of renegotiated debt - known as the Exchanges of 2005 and 2010 - from being actually paid to the bondholders. (Cristian Carrillo, Nueva fecha para seguir la pelea con los buitres Página/12 16.08.2014; Holders of Argentina eurobonds appeal US Judge Griesa ruling Buenos Aires Herald 15.08.2014) Argentina is also asking the US Executive Branch to intervene on the grounds that the Nixon zombie judge Thomas Griesa is encroaching on its prerogative to conduct foreign affairs.

President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner is stressing that it's a national struggle for Argentina. And that the problem is not just a matter of the vulture funds' avarice but also "una decisión política y geopolítica de querer volver a endeudar a la Argentina y tirar abajo, de cualquier modo, la reestructuración de deuda soberana" ("a political and geopolitical decision that wants to return Argentina to an indebted state and to shoot down the restructuring of sovereign debt by whatever means"). (CFK: "La amenaza de los fondos buitre es a todos los argentinos") (CFK: "La amenaza de los fondos buitre es a todos los argentinos" Página/12 16.08.2014)

Argentina has also appealed to the International Court of Justice over the case, Visión 7 - Fondos buitre: Argentina demandó a EEUU ante La Haya TV Pública argentina 07.08.2014:

But even though the Obama Administration theoretically supported Argentina's position, it quickly declined to accept The Hague's jurisdiction over the Nixon zombie judge case. As Joseph Ax and Andrew Chung report in Argentina threatened with contempt order by U.S. judge Reuters 08/08/2014:

... a spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department said the United States would not permit the International Justice Court in The Hague to hear Argentina's claims that U.S. court decisions had violated its sovereignty.

"We do not view the ICJ as an appropriate venue for addressing Argentina's debt issues, and we continue to urge Argentina to engage with its creditors to resolve remaining issues with bondholders," the spokeswoman said in an email.

Argentina petitioned the International Court of Justice on Thursday, but the lawsuit could only move forward if the United States submitted voluntarily to the court's jurisdiction.
Despite its origins in judicial malpractice, the case has become "completely political" ("absolutamente política"), as Edgardo Mocca wrote a couple of weeks ago. (Malvinas no es sinónimo de derrotas Página/12 03.08.2014)

Ellen Brown describes thew conflict in Cry for Argentina: Fiscal Mismanagement, Odious Debt or Pillage? Web of Debt 08/12/2014. The current standoff with the Nixon zombie judge, she writes, "underscores the need for an international mechanism for nations to go bankrupt."

And she argues:

Who is at fault? The global financial press blames Argentina’s own fiscal mismanagement, but Argentina maintains that it is willing and able to pay its other creditors. The fault lies rather with the vulture funds and the US court system, which insist on an extortionate payout even if it means jeopardizing the international resolution mechanism for insolvent countries. If creditors know that a few holdout vultures can trigger a default, they are unlikely to settle with other insolvent nations in the future.

Blame has also been laid at the feet of the IMF and the international banking system for failing to come up with a fair resolution mechanism for countries that go bankrupt. And at a more fundamental level, blame lies with a global debt-based monetary scheme that forces bankruptcy on some nations as a mathematical necessity. As in a game of musical chairs, some players must default.
She also has a memorable quote from Adrian Salbuchi, "the IMF was to Argentina what Arthur Andersen was to Enron, the difference being that Andersen was dissolved and closed down, whilst the IMF continues preaching its misconceived doctrines and exerts leverage." (From How to Solve Argentina's Recurrent Foreign Debt Crises: Proposal for a Long-Term Solution Global Research 11/07/2006.

Stefan Kaiser describes the general conflict in Argentinien und die Hedgefonds: Duell der Erpresser Spiegel Online 28.06.2014.

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