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Earthquake Details

Magnitude 4.7
Date-Time
Location 41.306°N, 129.029°E
Depth 0 km (~0 mile) set by location program
Region NORTH KOREA
Distances 70 km (45 miles) NNW of Kimchaek, North Korea
95 km (60 miles) SW of Chongjin, North Korea
180 km (115 miles) SSW of Yanji, Jilin, China
375 km (235 miles) NE of PYONGYANG, North Korea
Location Uncertainty horizontal +/- 3.8 km (2.4 miles); depth fixed by location program
Parameters NST= 75, Nph= 75, Dmin=371.4 km, Rmss=0.57 sec, Gp= 72°,
M-type=body wave magnitude (Mb), Version=A
Source
  • USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
Event ID us2009hbaf

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A tornado in central Oklahoma. Weather control researchers aspire to eliminate or control dangerous types of weather such as this.

Weather control is the act of manipulating or altering certain aspects of the environment to produce desirable changes in weather.

Contents

 

History of weather control

Witches concoct a brew to summon a hailstorm.

Some American Indians had rituals which they believed could induce rain. The Finnish people, on the other hand, were believed by others to be able to control weather. As a result, Vikings refused to take Finns on their oceangoing raids. Remnants of this superstition lasted into the twentieth century, with some ship crews being reluctant to accept Finnish sailors. The early modern era saw people observe that during battles the firing of cannons and other firearms often initiated precipitation. Magical and religiouspractices to control the weather are attested in a variety of cultures. In Greek mythologyIphigenia was sacrificed as a human sacrifice to appease the wrath of the goddessArtemis, who had caused the Achaean fleet to be becalmed at Aulis at the beginning of the Trojan War. In Homer‘s OdysseyAeolus, keeper of the winds, bestowedOdysseus and his crew with a gift of the four winds in a bag. However, the sailors open the bag while Odysseus slept, looking for booty, and as a result are blown off course by the resulting gale.[1] In ancient Rome, the lapis manalis was a sacred stone kept outside the walls of Rome in a temple of Mars. When Rome suffered from drought, the stone was dragged into the city.[2] The Berwick witches of Scotland were found guilty of using black magic to summon storms to murder King James VI of Scotland by seeking to sink the ship upon which he travelled.[3] Scandinavian witches allegedly claimed to sell the wind in bags or magically confined into wooden staves; they sold the bags to seamen who could release them when becalmed.[4] In various towns of Navarreprayers petitioned Saint Peter to grant rain in time of drought. If the rain was not forthcoming, the statue of St Peter was removed from the church and tossed into a river.[5] In the Middle AgesAbbas Ibn Firnas invented an artificial weather simulation room in which spectators saw and were astonished by starsclouds, artificial thunder, and lightning which were produced by mechanisms hidden in his basement laboratory.[6]

Perhaps the first example of practical weather control is the lightning rod. In the 1950s, computer scientist John von Neumann, an early theorizer on weather control, surmised that if Earth were to enter another Ice Age, a preventative solution would be to dump dirt (or spray soot from cropdusting planes) on the surface of the planet’s glaciers. He noted that this would significantly change their reflectivity (albedo), and thus increase the solar energy retained by the planet. Such a strategy would require repeated applications, as storms would cover some portion of the soot with new snow until their frequency and range abated. The theoretical efficacy of von Neumann’s proposal remains to be examined. Wilhelm Reichperformed cloudbusting experiments in the 1950s to 1960s, the results of which are controversial and not widely accepted by mainstream science. Dr Walter Russell wrote of weather control in Atomic Suicide 1956. Jack Toyer in the 1970s built a rainmaker on Palmers Island near Grafton using a solar mirror, electromagnetic static charge, and infra red frequencies of light to induce weather in regional areas within Australia. His work was continued by his successor, Peter Stevens.

Cloud seeding for rain

Cloud seeding is a common technique intended to trigger rain, but evidence on its effectiveness is mixed. The most daunting problem in the study of weather modification is the lack of scientific knowledge on the natural atmospheric processes. Because these natural processes are beyond man’s current comprehension, there is simply no controllable medium to conduct relative studies known as of yet. And because of the public’s ever growing need for more water, there has also been a rapid development of corporations that perform unregulated operational cloud seeding. Critics generally contend that claimed successes occur in conditions which were going to rain anyway. It is used in several different countries, including the United States, the People’s Republic of China, and Russia. In the People’s Republic of China there is a perceived dependency upon it in dry regions, which believe they are increasing annual rainfall by firing silver iodide rockets into the sky where rain is desired. In the United States, dry ice or silver iodide may be injected into a cloud by aircraft, or from the ground, in an attempt to increase rainfall; some companies are dedicated to this form of weather modification.

Storm prevention

Project Stormfury was an attempt to weaken tropical cyclones by flying aircraft into storms and seeding the eyewall with silver iodide. The project was run by the United States Government from 1962 to 1983. A similar project using soot was run in 1958, with inconclusive results.[7] Various methods have been proposed to reduce the harmful effects of hurricanes. Moshe Alamaro of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology[8] proposed using barges with upward-pointing jet engines to trigger smaller storms to disrupt the progress of an incoming hurricane; critics doubt the jets would be powerful enough to make any noticeable difference.[7]

Alexandre Chorin of the University of California at Berkeley proposed dropping large amounts of environmentally friendly oils on the sea surface to prevent droplet formation.[9] Experiments by Kerry Emanuel[10] of MIT in 2002 suggested that hurricane-force winds would disrupt the oil slick, making it ineffective.[11] Other scientists disputed the factual basis of the theoretical mechanism assumed by this approach.[12] The Florida company Dyn-O-Mat proposes the use of a product it has developed, called Dyn-O-Gel, to reduce the strength of hurricanes. The substance is a polymer in powder form which reportedly has the ability to absorb 1,500 times its own weight in water. The theory is that the polymer is dropped into clouds to remove their moisture and force the storm to use more energy to move the heavier water drops, thus helping to dissipate the storm. When the gel reaches the ocean surface, it is reportedly dissolved. The company has tested the substance on a thunderstorm, but there has not been any scientific consensus established as to its effectiveness.[13] Hail cannons are used by some farmers in an attempt to ward off hail, but there is no reliable scientific evidence to confirm or deny their effectiveness. Another new anti-hurricane technology [1] is a method for the reduction of tropical cyclones’ destructive force – pumping sea water into and diffusing it in the wind at the bottom of such tropical cyclone in its eyewall.

2008 Olympic games

In the largest rain dispersal operation on record in China, and the first time that such technology was used in conjunction with the Olympics, the Beijing Municipal Meteorological Bureau fired a total of 1,104rain dispersal rockets within an eight-hour period prior to and during the opening ceremonies of the Games of the XXIX Olympiad on August 8, 2008. The rockets were launched from twenty-one sites and may have prevented the ceremonies from receiving rainfall in the range of 25 to 100 millimeters of rain.

With a rainy weather forecast for the Olympic night, and 90% humidity, the attempt “successfully intercepted a stretch of rain belt from moving towards the stadium…” said Guo Hu, head of the Beijing Municipal Meteorological Bureau. “…”Under such a weather condition, a small bubble in the rain cloud would have triggered rainfall, let alone a lightning…” said Guo, according to Xinhua News’ 2008 Olympics website.In the subsequent days that followed torrential rain nearly washed the games out.

Ionospheric experiments

The High-frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) is a congressionally initiated program jointly managed by the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy. The HAARP complex is situated within a 23-acre lot in a relatively isolated region near the town of Gakona. When the final phase of the project is completed in 1997, the military will have erected 180 towers, 72 feet in height, forming a “high-power, high frequency phased array radio transmitter” capable of beaming in the 2.5-10 megahertz frequency range, at more than 3 gigawatts of power (3 billion watts). http://www.haarp.alaska.edu/haarp/prpeis.html

HIPAS has several diverse experimental facilities: a 1-megawatt rf transmitter to produce ELF/VLF (Extremely Low Frequency and Very Low Frequency) electromagnetic (EM) generation by the absorption ofradio frequency (rf) power in the arctic ionosphere including ion cyclotron excitation; a 100 kW rf plasma torch used in research on the destruction of hazardous waste; a 2.7 m liquid mirror telescope used with one of several lasers for ionospheric stimulation and measurement; an Incoherent Scatter Radar (a new project using 88 ft. diameter antenna at NOAA Gilmore Creek site 34 km SW of HIPAS as the receiving antenna with the transmitter at HIPAS). HIPAS is in the process of adding a very high power (terawatt) laser (recently obtained from LLNL) to perform laser breakdown experiments in the ionosphere. Two Diesel electric generators (1500 HP 4160 V, 3-phase, 1.2 MVA each) are used to power the experiments. There are a number of computers (PC’s ) on site, and a high-speed data line to UAF is available. While these experiments are useful in measuring the properties of the ionosphere, they produce insufficient amounts of energy to modify it in any significant way. however hotspots can be created within the ionospehere where this radiation is focused, temperatures can be elevated by up to 1600`k causing expansion of the ionosphere and subsequent changes in pressure and temperature, which in turn lead to changes in the global meteorology.

Weather control and law

1977 Environmental Modification Convention

Weather control, as well as “weather tampering”, for hostile or military purposes is expressly forbidden dating from at least December 10, 1976, when the “United Nations General Assembly Resolution 31/72, TIAS 9614 Convention[14] on the Prohibition of Military or Any Other Hostile Use of Environmental Modification Techniques” was adopted. The Convention was: Signed in Geneva May 18, 1977; Entered into force October 5, 1978; Ratification by U.S. President December 13, 1979; U.S. ratification deposited at New York January 17, 1980.[15]

Space Preservation Act Title: To preserve the cooperative, peaceful uses of space for the benefit of all humankind by permanently prohibiting the basing of weapons in space by the United States, and to require the President to take action to adopt and implement a world treaty banning space-based weapons. Sponsor: Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c107:H.R.2977.IH: The bill originally mentioned chemtrails and H.A.A.R.P.,but was modified and resubmitted as H.R.3616 and H.R.2440. H.R. 2977 Space Preservation Act of 2001 introduced October 2, 2001, 107th Congress, 1st Session. The bill was referred to committee and no further action ensued. H.R. 3616 Space Preservation Act of 2002 introduced January 23, 2002, 107th Congress, 2d Session. The bill was referred to committee and no further action ensued. H.R. 2420 Space Preservation Act of 2005 introduced May 18, 2005, 109th Congress, 1st Session, with 34 co-sponsors (see accompanying list). The bill was referred to committee and no further action ensued. http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Space_Preservation_Act

2005 U.S. Senate Bill 517 and U.S. House Bill 2995

U.S. Senate Bill 517[16] and U.S. House Bill 2995[17] were two laws proposed in 2005 that would have allowed experimental weather modification by artificial methods, attempted to establish a Weather Modification Operations and Research Board, and implemented a national weather modification policy. Neither ever became law.

U.S. Senate Bill 1807 & U.S. House Bill 3445 Senate Bill 1807 and House Bill 3445, identical bills introduced July 17, 2007, propose to establish a Weather Mitigation Advisory and Research Board to federally fund weather modification research http://tlp.law.pitt.edu/SP_DiLorenzo_Weather%20Modification.htm sponsored by Kay Bailey Hutcheson and Mark Udall. http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s110-1807

Future aspirations

Climatologist Ross Hoffman has simulated hurricane control based on selective heating and cooling (or prevention of evaporation).[18] Futurist John Smart has discussed the potential for weather control via space-based solar power networks. One proposal involves the gentle heating via microwave of portions of large hurricanes. Such chaotic systems may be susceptible to “side steering” with a few degrees of increased temperature/pressure at critical points. A sufficient network might keep the largest and most potentially damaging hurricanes from landfall, at the request of host nations. Blizzards, monsoons, and other extreme weather are also potential candidates for space-based amelioration.[citations needed] If large-scale weather control were to become feasible, potential implications may include:

  • Unintended side effects, especially given the chaotic nature of weather development
  • Damage to existing ecosystems
  • Health risks to humans
  • Equipment malfunction or accidents
  • Non-democratic control or use as a weapon

For the 2008 Olympics, China had 30 airplanes, 4,000 rocket launchers, and 7,000 anti-aircraft guns to stop rain. Each system would shoot various chemicals into any threatening clouds to shrink rain drops before they reach the stadium.[19]

Weather control in popular culture

In popular culture, weather control technology can be encountered in the realms of public speculation, science fiction, and fantasy. The concept of weather control is often portrayed as a part of terraforming.

Film and television

Star Trek

  • In the Star Trek universe, most advanced planets and colonies utilize weather control, often referred to as weather modification grids or weather modification nets. A small, but long-established TNG-era (ca2369) colony was a weather control facility for approximately a hundred years. Most advanced civilizations apparently employ weather control standard equipment.
  • Weather control technology in 2270s required special facilities, modern TNG– and DS9-era technology consists of multiple mid-size devices positioned strategically, networked and controlled from more-or-less arbitrary places.
  • For example, the planet Risa has its climate controlled to be a tropical paradise. Perhaps one of the few modern exceptions of planets apparently without weather control technology is Ferenginar with continuous rain.

Other films or shows

  • In the Sci Fi Channel original series, Stargate SG1, Episode 214, “Touchstone“, aired on October 30, 1998, the Stargate SG1 team discovers a weather control device on an alien planet, which is subsequently stolen and brought to earth, where experimenting with it wreaked havoc with the local weather. The device was later recaptured and returned to its original planet which had suffered phenomenal storms since it had been stolen.
  • In the Disney Channel Original MovieThe Ultimate Christmas Present, two girls find a weather machine and make it snow in Los Angeles.
  • In the live action Justice League of America film, the villain is a terrorist who has a weather control device.
  • In Aliens, a colony sent to LV-426 by the Company utilized a fusion-powered terraforming atmosphere processor. In the first film, the planet’s climate was not yet suitable for human life.
  • In The Arrival, a race of aliens is found to be terraforming the Earth using hidden factories producing huge volumes of highly potent, engineered “super-greenhouse gases”.
  • In the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon series, the episode “Hot Rodding Teenagers from Dimension X” includes Stone Warriors using a “weather satellite“, with one difference: while other weather satellite gives weather prognosis, this one “makes weather”. The “weather satellite” creates a storm to level New York City, but the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles destroy it. The episode “Take Me to Your Leader” of the same series include Krang and the Shredder using a machine to reduce the Sun, creating cold weather on the Earth.
  • Storm (played by Halle Berry in the 2000 film and subsequent sequels), a member of the X-Men, can control the weather with her mind.
  • In Superman IIIGus Gorman (Richard Pryor) changes the weather by hacking into a weather satellite.
  • In a Family Guy episode, Stewie builds a machine that can control the weather using only a satellite dish and a See ‘n Say.
  • In the film The Avengers Sir August de Wynter (Sean Connery) creates a satellite capable of controlling the weather.
  • Our Man Flint is a 1966 sci-fi action film which stars James Coburn as Derek Flint where a trio of mad scientists attempt to blackmail the world with a weather-control machine.
  • Kaijûtô no kessen: Gojira no musuko is a 1967 film from Japan. Scientists, on a tropical island, conduct weather control experiments then encounter gigantic praying mantises and a giant spider that attack the son of Godzilla. Godzilla arrives and saves his offspring.
  • The cartoon miniseries G.I. Joe: The Revenge of Cobra, showed the terrorist group Cobra in possession of a device called the Weather Dominator.
  • American Daytime soap opera General Hospital featured a storyline where mad genius Mikkos Cassadine used a substance called Carbonic Snow to create a blizzard in the show’s locale Port Charles in the middle of what had been a long hot summer in order to blackmail world leaders into accepting his new world order. Luke Spencer managed to thwart the plan.
  • In WALL-E, the Megacorporation known as Buy N Large, had established a Global Weather Control System, the system was made of satellites that would change and control the weather in the areas that they were in. The system worked so well that soon Buy N Large even launched a program in which citizens can book certain weather in the areas where they live. Such as, scheduling a Thunderstorm during a parade so that it will literally “rain on their parade.”
  • In the sci-fi drama series Heroes, Angela Petrelli’s long-lost sister, Alice Shaw, was revealed to be able to control weather.

Computer games

  • In Master Of Orion, it is possible to build a weather control building to change the planet’s environment.
  • In Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 and Command & Conquer: Yuri’s Revenge Expansion Pack, the Allies can build the weather control device superweapon, and direct thunderstorms to strike a selected location of the map every 10 minutes.
  • In Tribunal, an expansion pack to The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, the player finds a machine under the city of Almalexia that can change the weather of the city at the will of its user.
  • In Phantasy Star II, a weather, irrigation and dam control system known as Climatrol has been constructed by Mother Brain to make the barren planet Motavia habitable for Palman occupation.
  • In the game Spore by Will Wright, players are able to use a spacecraft to modify planetary atmospheres – creating volcanoes to generate carbon dioxide, seeding plant life to create breathable air, or even using a “Genesis device” to make a planet habitable in one go. There is no actual controlling of weather, however.[20]
  • In “Earth 2150“, the Lunar Corporation are capable of building a weather control station for tactical weather control. The structure can be charged to cause storms, fog, and/or wind at targeted areas on the map.
  • In Fable 2 Knothole island Expansion, the player can control weather by obtaining weather crystals and using them in a weather chamber, 3 crystals represent sun,rain and snow.
  • in The Sims 2 seasons Expansion, players can use a season changing device to make a certain season permanent or prolong a desired season for a number of in-game days.

Prose

  • Ben Bova‘s The Weathermakers is the story of a government agency that controls the weather.
  • Sidney Sheldon‘s Are You Afraid of the Dark is the story of a think tank that builds technology powerful enough to create hurricanes, tornadoes, and tsunamis.
  • In Michael Crichton‘s State of Fear, ecoterrorists plan to create a tsunami, calve an iceberg, and induce flash flooding and hurricanes.
  • In Normand Lester’s science thriller Verglas, the 1998 icestorm that struck the Montréal area is an experiment by the Pentagon in the development of a climatic weapon that went wrong. The book speculate that ULF waves generated by a transmitter at Siple Station, a US base in Antarctica, caused the icestorm by affecting the ionosphere over Québec.
  • In Lois Lowry‘s The Giver, the government controls the weather and keeps it from snowing, and confine rain to the farmland.
  • In the book series Weather Warden by Rachel Caine, the Wardens are an association of people who have the ability to control the elements – earth, fire and weather. They manipulate these elements to stop natural disasters from devastating mankind. The main character herself is a Weather Warden, so weather manipulation plays a large role throughout the series.
  • In Roger Zelazny‘s The Chronicles of Amber an openly known quality of the Jewel of Judgment is the ability to control the local weather.
  • In Frank Herbert‘s Dune series, weather control is widespread, and is achieved with specialized satellites in orbit around a planet.

Music

Other fictional weather controllers

  • DC Comics villain Weather Wizard could control the weather with a special kind of technology in the shape of a wand.
  • Marvel Comics heroes Thor and Storm could control weather; the former because he is the Norse god of thunder, the latter because she is a mutant whose powers specifically center around weather control.
  • Digimon character Wizardmon could manipulate thunderstorms.
  • When the Muppet Count von Count of Sesame Street laughs, it often invokes thunder.
  • In some of the Asterix comics, when the village bard Cacofonix sings, it starts to rain.
  • In the 2000 AD world of Judge Dredd the weather in Mega City One is controlled by a weather control station positioned above the populous and is used to spread a chemical which causes Block War by the city of East Meg One
  • In the Nintendo Gameboy Advance Video Game Pokemon Sapphire, The Pokemon “Kyogre” controlled the rain and the tides in Hoenn.
  • In the BIONICLE Saga, weather control is one of the many powers the Makuta species have.

Conspiracy theories

Conspiracy theorists have suggested that certain governments use or seek to use weather control as a weapon (eg via HAARP and/or chemtrails), but such allegations have not been proven. At a counterterrorism conference in 1997, United States Secretary of Defense William Cohen referred to the writings of futurist Alvin Toffler, specifically regarding concerns about “eco-terrorism” and intentionally caused natural disasters.[21]

See also

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O que vai ser o mundo pós-Breton Woods? EUA/Japão x Europa x BRIC’s? 

Essa é a verdadeira pergunta de 1 googolhão de dólares.

Origem: Wikipédia, a enciclopédia livre.

As conferências de Bretton Woods, definindo o Sistema Bretton Woods de gerenciamento econômico internacional, estabeleceram em Julho de 1944 as regras para as relações comerciais e financeiras entre os países mais industrializados do mundo. O sistema Bretton Woods foi o primeiro exemplo, na história mundial, de uma ordem monetária totalmente negociada, tendo como objetivo governar as relações monetárias entre Nações-Estado independentes.

Preparando-se para reconstruir o capitalismo mundial enquanto a Segunda Guerra Mundial ainda grassava, 730 delegados de todas as 44 nações aliadas encontraram-se no Mount Washington Hotel, em Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, para a Conferência monetária e financeira das Nações Unidas. Os delegados deliberaram e finalmente assinaram o Acordo de Bretton Woods (Bretton Woods Agreement) durante as primeiras três semanas de julho de 1944.

Índice

Os acordos

Definindo um sistema de regras, instituições e procedimentos para regular a política econômica internacional, os planificadores de Bretton Woods estabeleceram o Banco Internacional para a Reconstrução e Desenvolvimento (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, ou BIRD) (mais tarde dividido entre o Banco Mundial e o “Banco para investimentos internacionais”) e o Fundo Monetário Internacional (FMI). Essas organizações tornaram-se operacionais em 1946, depois que um número suficiente de países ratificou o acordo.

As principais disposições do sistema Bretton Woods foram, primeiramente, a obrigação de cada país adotar uma política monetária que mantivesse a taxa de câmbio de suas moedas dentro de um determinado valor indexado ao dólar —mais ou menos um por cento— cujo valor, por sua vez, estaria ligado ao ouro numa base fixa de 35 dólares por onça Troy, e em segundo lugar, a provisão pelo FMI de financiamento para suportar dificuldades temporárias de pagamento. Em 1971, diante de pressões crescentes na demanda global por ouro, Richard Nixon, então presidente dos Estados Unidos, suspendeu unilateralmente o sistema de Bretton Woods, cancelando a conversibilidade direta do dólar em ouro.

As origens do sistema Bretton Woods

As bases políticas do sistema Bretton Woods podem ser encontradas na confluência de várias condições principais: as experiências comuns da Grande Depressão, a concentração de poder em um pequeno número de Estados e a presença de uma potência dominante querendo (e capaz de) assumir um papel de liderança.

As experiências da Grande Depressão

Um alto nível de concordância entre os países sobre as metas e meios do gerenciamento econômico internacional facilitou em muito as decisões tomadas pela Conferência de Bretton Woods. A fundação daquele acordo foi uma crença comum noCapitalismo intervencionista. Apesar de os países desenvolvidos diferirem quanto ao tipo de intervenções que preferiam para suas economias nacionais (a França, por exemplo, preferia um maior planejamento e intervenção estatal, enquanto os Estados Unidos eram favoráveis a uma intervenção estatal mais limitada), todos, no entanto, baseavam-se predominantemente em mecanismos de mercado e na noção de propriedade privada.

Assim, foram as semelhanças, mais do que as diferenças, que foram postas em evidência. Todos os governos participantes de Bretton Woods concordavam que o caos monetário do período entre-guerras forneceu valiosas lições.

A experiência da Grande Depressão, quando a proliferação de controles e barreiras de comércio levaram ao desastre econômico, estava fresca na memória dos participantes. Os conferencistas esperavam evitar a repetição da debandada dos anos 30, quando os controles das trocas minaram o sistema internacional de pagamentos, base do comércio mundial. A política de “beggar-thy-neighbor” (“empobrece teu vizinho”) dos governos dos anos 30—usando tarifas alfandegárias a fim de aumentar a competitividade de seus produtos de exportação e, assim, reduzir os déficits da balança de pagamentos—ocasionaram espirais deflacionárias que resultaram na diminuição da produção, desemprego em massa e declínio generalizado do comércio mundial. O comércio nos anos 30 ficou restrito a blocos monetários (grupos de nações que empregavam uma moeda equivalente, como o bloco da “Libra esterlina” do Império Britânico). Esses blocos retardaram o fluxo internacional de capitais e as oportunidades de investimentos estrangeiros. Apesar de esta estratégia tender a aumentar o dinheiro arrecadado pelo governo a curto prazo, ela piorou drasticamente a situação a médio e longo prazo.

Assim, para a economia internacional, todos os planificadores de Bretton Woods favoreceram um sistema relativamente liberal, um sistema que se baseasse primeiramente no mercado, com um mínimo de barreiras ao fluxo de comércio e capital privados. Apesar de não estarem inteiramente de acordo sobre a maneira de pôr em prática esse sistema liberal, todos concordavam com um sistema aberto.

Segurança econômica

Também com base nas experiências do período entre-guerras, os planificadores estadunidenses desenvolveram um conceito de segurança econômica—que um sistema econômico liberal internacional aumentaria as possibilidades de paz no pós-guerra. Um dos que viram tal segurança foi Cordell Hull, o secretário de Estado dos Estados Unidos de 1933 a 1944.[1] Hull acreditava que as causas fundamentais das duas guerras mundiais estavam na discriminação econômica e guerras comerciais. Especificamente, ele tinha em mente acordos bilaterais de controle de comércio e trocas da Alemanha Nazi e o sistema de preferência imperial praticado pelo Reino Unido (pelo qual membros ou antigos membros do Império britânico beneficiavam de um status comercial especial). Hull argumentava que:

Comércio sem obstáculos associado com paz; altas tarifas, barreiras comerciais e competição econômica injusta, com guerra… se conseguíssemos tornar o comércio mais livre… mais livre no sentido de menos discriminações e obstruções… de tal modo que um país não ficaria mortalmente invejoso de outro e os padrões de vida de todos os países pudessem crescer, eliminando com isso a insatisfação econômica que alimenta a guerra, teríamos uma chance razoável de paz durável.[2]

O surgimento do intervencionismo governamental

Os países desenvolvidos também concordaram que o sistema econômico liberal internacional requeria intervencionismo do governo. Após a Grande Depressão, a administração pública da economia emergiu como uma atividade primeira dos governos de Estados desenvolvidos: emprego, estabilidade e crescimento eram então assuntos importantes da política pública. Com isso, o papel do governo na economia nacional ficou associado com a apropriação, pelo Estado, da responsabilidade de garantir a seus cidadãos um certo grau de bem-estar econômico. O welfare state (estado protetor) nasceu da Grande Depressão, que criou uma necessidade popular de intervencionismo estatal na economia, e das contribuições teóricas da escola econômica Keynesiana, que defendia a necessidade de intervenção estatal a fim de manter níveis adequados de emprego.

A nível internacional, essas idéias também surgiram da experiência dos anos 30. A prioridade dos objetivos nacionais, a ação independente nacional no período entre-guerras e o fracasso em perceber que esses objetivos nacionais não poderiam ser atingidos sem uma certa forma de colaboração internacional resultaram em políticas de estilo “empobrece teu vizinho” como alta tarificação e desvalorizações competitivas, que contribuíram para a queda da economia, instabilidade política doméstica e guerra internacional. A lição foi, como explica Harry Dexter White, adepto do New Deal e principal arquiteto do sistema Bretton Woods:

a falta de um alto grau de colaboração econômica entre as nações industrializadas… resultará, inevitavelmente, em guerra econômica que será o prelúdio e instigador de guerra militar em uma escala ainda maior.[3]

Para garantir a estabilidade econômica e a paz política, os Estados concordaram em cooperar para regular o sistema econômico internacional. O pilar da visão estadunidense do mundo pós-guerra era o comércio livre. Liberdade de comércio implicava tarifas baixas e, entre outras coisas, uma balança comercial favorável ao sistema capitalista.

Assim, as economias de mercado mais desenvolvidas aceitaram a visão dos Estados Unidos de gerenciamento econômico internacional do pós-guerra, que foi concebido para criar e manter um sistema monetário internacional efetivo e encorajar a redução de barreiras ao comércio e ao fluxo de capital .

O surgimento da hegemonia dos Estados Unidos da América

O gerenciamento econômico internacional baseava-se na potência dominante para dirigir o sistema. A concentração de poder facilitou o gerenciamento na medida em que reduziu o número de atores cujo acordo era necessário para o estabelecimento de regras, instituições e procedimentos e para levar a cabo o gerenciamento dentro dos sistemas em acordo. Esse líder foi os Estados Unidos da América. Como a potência com a economia e política mais avançadas do mundo, os EUA estavam claramente em uma posição ideal para assumir essa liderança.

Os EUA emergiram da Segunda Guerra Mundial como a mais forte economia do mundo, vivendo um rápido crescimento industrial e uma forte acumulação de capital. Os EUA não haviam sofrido as destruições da Segunda Guerra Mundial, tinham construído uma indústria manufatureira poderosa e enriqueceram vendendo armas e emprestando dinheiro aos outros combatentes; na verdade, a produção industrial dos EUA em 1945 foi mais do que o dobro da produção anual dos anos entre 1935 e 1939. Em comparação, a Europa e o Japão estavam dizimados militar e economicamente.

Quando a Conferência de Bretton Woods aconteceu, as vantagens econômicas dos Estados Unidos eram indiscutíveis e esmagadoras. Os EUA tinham a maioria dos investimentos mundiais, da produção manufaturada e das exportações. Em 1945, os EUA produziam a metade de todo o carvão mundial, dois-terços do petróleo e mais do que a metade da eletricidade. Os EUA eram capazes de produzir imensas quantidades de naviosaviõesautomóveisarmamentosmáquinas, produtos químicos, etc. Reforçando a vantagem inicial—e assegurando a liderança dos EUA no mundo capitalista—os EUA detinham 80% das reservas mundiais de ouro e tinham não somente poderosas Forças Armadas, mas também a bomba atômica.

Na condição de maior potência mundial e uma das poucas nações não afetadas pela guerra, os EUA estavam em posição de ganhar mais do que qualquer outro país com a liberação do comércio mundial. Os EUA teriam com isso um mercado mundial para suas exportações, e teriam acesso irrestrito a matérias-primas vitais.

Os EUA não eram somente capazes de, mas também queriam, assumir essa liderança. Apesar de os EUA terem mais ouro, mais capacidade produtora e mais poder militar do que todo o resto do mundo junto, o capitalismo dos EUA não poderia sobreviver sem mercados e aliados. William Clayton, o Secretário de Estado assistente para Assuntos Econômicos, foi uma das várias personalidades influentes na política estado-unidense que colocaram em evidência esse ponto: “Precisamos de mercados—grandes mercados—por todo o mundo, onde poderemos comprar e vender.”

Houve várias previsões de que a paz traria de volta a depressão e o desemprego devido ao término da produção bélica e ao retorno dos soldados ao mercado de trabalho. Entre as dificuldades econômicas estava um aumento abrupto da inquietude trabalhista. Determinado a evitar uma catástrofe econômica equivalente à da década de 1930, o presidente Franklin D. Roosevelt viu a criação de uma ordem pós-guerra como uma maneira de garantir a prosperidade dos EUA.

A carta do Atlântico

Durante a guerra, os Estados Unidos da América imaginaram uma ordem econômica mundial pós-guerra na qual os EUA pudessem penetrar em mercados que estivessem previamente fechados a outros blocos, bem como abrir novas oportunidades a investimentos estrangeiros para as empresas estado-unidenses, removendo restrições de fluxo de capital internacional.

Carta do Atlântico, esboçada em agosto de 1941 durante o encontro do presidente Roosevelt com o primeiro-ministro britânico Winston Churchill em um navio no Atlântico norte, foi o mais notável precursor à Conferência de Bretton Woods. Assim comoWoodrow Wilson antes dele, cujos “Quatorze pontos” (Fourteen Points) delinearam os objetivos dos Estados Unidos para o pós-guerra da Primeira Guerra Mundial, Roosevelt lançou uma série de objetivos ambiciosos para o mundo pós-guerra antes mesmo de os EUA entrarem na Segunda Guerra Mundial. A carta do Atlântico afirmou o direito de todas as nações a igual acesso ao comércio e à matéria-prima. Além disso, a carta apelou pela liberdade dos mares (um objetivo principal da política estrangeira estado-unidense desde que a França e o Reino Unido ameaçaram navios estado-unidenses nos anos 1790), o desarmamento dos agressores e o “estabelecimento de um amplo e permanente sistema de segurança geral.”

Quando a guerra aproximava-se do fim, a Conferência de Bretton Woods foi o ápice de dois anos e meio de planejamento da reconstrução pós-guerra pelos Tesouros dos EUA e Reino Unido. Representantes estado-unidenses estudaram com os colegas britânicos a reconstituição do que tinha estado faltando entre as duas guerras mundiais: um sistema internacional de pagamentos que permitisse que o comércio fosse efetuado sem o medo de desvalorizações monetárias repentinas ou flutuações selvagens das taxas de câmbio — problemas que praticamente paralisaram o capitalismo mundial durante a Grande Depressão.

Na ausência de um mercado europeu forte para os bens e serviços estado-unidenses, pensava a maior parte dos políticos, a economia dos EUA seria incapaz de sustentar a prosperidade que ela alcançara durante a guerra. Além disso, os sindicatos de trabalhadores tinham aceitado a contragosto as restrições impostas pelo governo aos seus pedidos durante a guerra, e eles não queriam esperar mais tempo por mudanças, principalmente depois que a inflação afetara as escalas de salários de maneira violenta (no final de 1945, já havia acontecido greves importantes nas indústrias de automóvel, eletricidade e aço).

Financiador e conselheiro autoindicado de presidentes e congressistas, Bernard Baruch resumiu o espírito de Bretton Wood no início de 1945: se pudermos “eliminar o subsídio ao trabalho e à competição acirrada nos mercados exportadores,” bem como prevenir a reconstrução de máquinas de guerra, “oh boy, oh boy, que prosperidade a longo termo nós teremos.”[4] Assim, os Estados Unidos vão usar sua posição predominante para restaurar uma economia mundial aberta, unificada sob controle dos EUA, que deu aos EUA acesso ilimitado a mercados e matéria-prima.

By Jason Simpkins
Managing Editor 
Money Morning

Emerging markets, led by China and Russia, plan to jointly challenge the U.S. dollar’s role as the world’s sole benchmark currency at the April 2 meeting of the Group 20 nations – a move that underscores the currency’s weakness and fading support around the world.

The creation of a new reserve currency to be issued by international financial institutions was one of the measures Russia proposed to the G20 on March 16, ahead of the group’s summit next week.

Russian authorities previously met with financial ministers and central bankers from China, Brazil and India on March 13. The group issued its first-ever joint communiqué ahead of the G20 finance ministers last Saturday, March 14.  The joint statement did not mention a new currency like Russia proposed, but an unidentified source told Reutersthat the issue was discussed.

Chinese policymakers confirmed as much today (Monday) when Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the People’s Bank of China, released an essay entitled “Reform of the International Monetary System” on the BOC’s Web site.

Without explicitly mentioning to the U.S. dollar, Zhou asked what kind of international reserve currency does the world needs to secure global financial stability and facilitate economic growth.

According to Zhou, the dollar’s unique status as the world’s primary currency reserve has resulted in increasingly frequent financial crises ever since the collapse of the Bretton Woods system in 1971.

“The price is becoming increasingly higher, not only for the users, but also for the issuers of the reserve currencies,” Zhou said. “Although crisis may not necessarily be an intended result of the issuing authorities, it is an inevitable outcome of the institutional flaws.”

Zhou called for the “re-establishment of a new and widely accepted reserve currency with a stable valuation” to replace the U.S. dollar – a credit-based national currency. The central bank governor noted that the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Right (SDR) should be given special consideration. 

Created by the IMF in 1969 to support the Bretton Woods fixed exchange rate system, the SDR was redefined in 1973 as a basket of currencies. Today the SDR consists of the euro, Japanese yen, pound sterling, and U.S. dollar.

“The SDR has the features and potential to act as a super-sovereign reserve currency,” said Zhou. “Moreover, an increase in SDR allocation would help the Fund address its resources problem and the difficulties in the voice and representation reform. Therefore, efforts should be made to push forward a SDR allocation.”

Zhou proposed the following actions to move the SDR in a direction that could better accommodate demand for a more stable reserve currency:

  • Set up a settlement system between the SDR and other currencies. Therefore, the SDR, which is now only used between governments and international institutions, could become a widely accepted means of payment in international trade and financial transactions.
  • Actively promote the use of the SDR in international trade, commodities pricing, investment and corporate bookkeeping. This will help enhance the role of the SDR, and will effectively reduce the fluctuation of prices of assets denominated in national currencies and related risks.
  • Create financial assets denominated in the SDR to increase its appeal. The introduction of SDR-denominated securities, which is being studied by the IMF, will be a good start.
  • Further improve the valuation and allocation of the SDR. The basket of currencies forming the basis for SDR valuation should be expanded to include currencies of all major economies, and the GDP may also be included as a weight. The allocation of the SDR can be shifted from a purely calculation-based system to one backed by real assets, such as a reserve pool, to further boost market confidence in its value.

  
Many analysts view the campaign by emerging markets for a new reserve currency as an attempt by to gain more control in the IMF, which has traditionally been dominated by richer countries. But the new currency campaign is also further evidence that Beijing is becoming less and less comfortable with its large holdings of U.S. assets, namely Treasuries. 

Concerns about the dollar losing value have escalated in recent weeks as the U.S. Federal Reserve pursues a policy of quantitative easing in an effort of taming the financial crisis.

We have lent a huge amount of money to the United States,” Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said earlier this month. “Of course, we are concerned about the safety of our assets. To be honest, I am definitely a little bit worried. I request the U.S. to maintain its good credit, to honor its promises and to guarantee the safety of China’s assets.”

China is the world leader with $2 trillion in foreign currency holdings. About half of that is held in U.S. Treasuries and notes issued by other government-affiliated agencies, such as Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE).

Half of Russia’s currency reserves – the world’s third-largest stockpile – consist of U.S. dollars, as well.

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WASHINGTON (AFP) — US President Barack Obama has defended the dollar as “extraordinarily strong” and rejected China’s call for a new global currency as an alternative to the dollar.

He said investors considered the United States “the strongest economy in the world with the most stable political system in the world” even as it was reeling from a prolonged recession stemming from financial turmoil.

People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan had called for a replacement of the dollar, installed as the reserve currency after World War II, with a different standard run by the International Monetary Fund.

“As far as confidence in the US economy or the dollar, I would just point out that the dollar is extraordinarily strong right now,” Obama told a White House press conference on Tuesday.

He said that although the United States was “going through a rough patch” at present, it enjoyed a “great deal of confidence” from investors.

“So you don’t have to take my word for it,” he said.

“I don’t believe there is a need for a global currency,” Obama said, in what appeared to be a break from tradition among US presidents not to comment directly on the dollar’s value.

Zhou suggested the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights, a currency basket comprising dollars, euros, sterling and yen, could serve as a super-sovereign reserve currency, saying it would not be easily influenced by the policies of individual countries.

China is the largest creditor to the United States, being the top holder of US Treasury bonds worth 739.6 billion dollars as of January, according to US figures. It is also the world’s largest holder of US dollars as a reserve currency, at more than one trillion dollars.

Zhou’s comments came just two weeks after Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, in a rare expression of concern, called on US economic planners to safeguard Chinese assets.

“We have lent huge amounts of money to the United States. Of course we are concerned about the safety of our assets,” Wen said as the United States grappled with the worst financial turmoil since the Great Depression.

The latest Chinese concern came as the dollar took a beating following the Federal Reserve’s decision last week to buy up to 300 billion dollars in long-term US Treasury bonds and boost its purchases of mortgage securities by 750 billion dollars in an effort to revive the ailing economy.

The decision, according to foreign exchange dealers, made US assets less attractive to investors worried that the Fed move would end up debasing the world’s reserve currency.

Despite the financial meltdown at home, the dollar has been mostly regarded as “safe haven” by investors averting risks amid a global economic slump.

Before Obama spoke, the dollar ended higher Tuesday against key currencies.

The euro fell to 1,3469 dollars in late New York trading from 1,3617 a day earlier while the greenback rose to 97.88 yen from 97.13.

US Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Tuesday also defended the dollar at a congressional hearing.

At the hearing, a lawmaker asked the two financial chiefs: “Would you categorically renounce the United States moving away from the dollar and going to a global currency as suggested by China?”

Geithner immediately responded, “I would.”

“And the chair?” the lawmaker asked, turning to Fed chairman Bernanke.

“I would also,” Bernanke said.

The idea of a global currency determined by multilateral organizations is not new, said John Lipsky, the IMF’s first deputy managing director.

“But it’s a serious proposal,” he said in Washington.

And he hastened to add, “I don’t think even the proponents think it as a short-term issue but as a longer-term issue that merits serious study and consideration.”

EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said the dollar would remain unchallenged as the top reserve currency even as emerging economies such as China play a more critical role in the global economy.

He said, “I don’t expect major structural changes in the role that the dollar plays today as a reserve currency.”

The debate over the dollar’s role came ahead of the G20 summit of developing and industrialized nations on April 2 in London, where world leaders and international organizations, including the IMF, are to discuss reforming the financial system.

Russia has also proposed the summit discuss creating a supranational reserve currency. The IMF created the SDR as an international reserve asset in 1969, but it is only used by governments and international institutions.