Don’t ‘Audit The Fed’ – Abolish It

Photo credit: International Monetary Fund (Flickr)

In recent remarks to the Senate Banking Committee, Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen (pictured above) was her typical evasive and non-committal self when the topic of interest rate hikes were broached. When the subject of potential oversight of the Fed came up, however, Ms. Yellen became quite forthright in her response.

When asked about a bill introduced by Kentucky Senator Rand Paul to “Audit the Fed,” Ms. Yellen declared: “I want to be completely clear: I strongly oppose ‘Audit the Fed.’”  Ms. Yellen defended her position on the grounds (which have been given by every previous Fed Chairman) that oversight would lead to politicized monetary decision making, thus compromising the central bank’s “independence.”

Senate Banking Chairman, Richard Shelby, R-Ala., countered the Chairwoman, saying “there is an even greater need for additional oversight” of the Fed since the onset of the financial crisis in 2007.

Ms. Yellen, her predecessors, and every other Fed apologist are simply wrong when they assert that the central bank is an independent agency that is free of political influence. The Federal Reserve System was created by an act of Congress (1913) and can ultimately be “reformed,” altered, and/or abolished by Congressional fiat if so desired.

That Congress does not oversee Fed policy is a result of its charter, which was originally crafted by the Big Banksters of the time (mostly the Rockefellers and Morgans) in concert with their bought-and-paid-for politicians. The lack of oversight was a deliberate part of their plan to give bankers and financers free reign to conduct monetary policy for their own benefit.

The Federal Reserve is and has always been a political creature designed for the benefit of financial elites. It is a highly privileged cartel with monopoly control of the nation’s money supply. Unlike the propaganda that emits from Fed officials, the central bank was instituted to protect banksters from financial collapse and bank runs. Fine-tuning the economy, reducing unemployment, or fighting inflation are all ancillary concerns for the Fed.

These are the simple facts that are deliberately kept from the public at large by the political establishment, academia, and the media.

The Audit the Fed movement, which began in earnest with Ron Paul’s first presidential run, is a wrongheaded approach to solve the nation’s ongoing financial crisis. Senator Rand Paul’s bill is mostly grandstanding to bolster his status among the Republican Party’s populist contingent in his anticipated race for the nomination.

In fact, instead of meaningful reform, greater public oversight of the Fed would most likely lead to worse results. Every Congressman and Senator would be pressuring the central bank to fund their pet projects. Can one imagine what the growth rate of the money supply would be if 535 ravenous politicians had a say in the conduct of monetary policy?!

Those who want to reverse the nation’s economic malaise should seek the Federal Reserve’s abolition and advocate its replacement with a de-politicized monetary order free of central banking. Such a system would most likely be based on a commodity (gold and/or silver) where “money producers” are free to engage in the creation of the “best money” and banking services to satisfy customers’ needs.

In such an order, banks would function as any other enterprise by profit and loss. If banks loan funds wisely, they will succeed; if not, they will fail and go out of business, replaced in the marketplace by more savvy entrepreneurs. There will be no bailouts at taxpayers’ expense for reckless financial speculation. Money and banking would become a sound and honest undertaking.

To actually believe that an Audit the Fed initiative would become law is beyond naïve. The political establishment will never voluntarily relinquish or allow any legitimate oversight of one of its chief pillars of power.

Instead of seeking change via politics, reformers must first change the climate of public opinion–which can only be accomplished when the prevailing ideology is debunked. Until the Federal Reserve is seen as an engine of inflation and the creator of economic disorder that needs to be eradicated, America’s financial woes will, unfortunately, continue.

Antonius Aquinas@AntoniusAquinas

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Political De-Centralization: The Model For Western Rejuvenation

Photo credit: Jordi Escuer (Flickr)

As the modern secular nation state becomes increasingly totalitarian, European history provides the model for the political reconstruction of the Western world. This historical map of Europe circa 1300 should be the ideal for those opposed to the corrupt and now bankrupt nation state and the system of international political and financial governing bodies and organizations that seek the elimination of all regional and local sovereignty.

The map shows that Europe at the time and for many years afterwards was comprised of numerous political configurations – principalities, duchies, confederations, and city states. Instead of a few centralized nation states that currently dominate the landscape, Europe was, for the most part of its history, politically decentralized–which explains not only the Continent’s tremendous economic growth, but also its unparalleled cultural achievements.

Monarchical style governance was the most popular form of rule during the period; and despite the negative modern bias against kings and queens, there was far greater personal freedom than there has been in the “democratic age.” More importantly, warfare, when it was conducted, was far less destructive in loss of life and that of wealth and property than the horrific contests that have since taken place. Moreover, the monarchical age was one of metallic money, which proved to be difficult to manipulate by the political classes.

Political and economic theory has long since shown that decentralization results in greater individual liberty and economic growth. A multitude of independent states and sovereignties is a far better check on tyranny than the supposed “checks and balances” of modern constitutional democracies. Even the much celebrated “separation of powers” concept adopted by most constitutional republics has not prevented the rise of the “total state.”

Numerous states provide the opportunity for the oppressed to “vote with their feet,” expatriating from draconian regimes. The threat of population drain and thus a reduction in the tax base is a far superior check on state power.

A number of small states makes it unlikely that a fiat paper money system, in which the world currently suffers under, would emerge. It would be extremely difficult for a dominant monetary authority to coerce and get a multitude of states to agree to accept a single currency outside of their control. Even the Euro almost failed to come into existence; and had Europe been more decentralized, the “Euro experiment” would have never been attempted.

Unfortunately, under the current ideological mindset, the breakup of the nation state into smaller units does not seem likely. Social change typical occurs after there has been an ideological shift, and the present dominant political paradigm is that of statism. However, an economic collapse or the continuing fall in living standards could lead to the breakaway of regions from their nation-state overlords.

Those opposed to the current world order need to redirect their efforts away from “reform,” electoral politics, or lobbying for favorable court decisions and instead focus on the development of organizations, the forming of alliances and relationships whose end result is the creation of new autonomous entities outside the hegemony of the nation state.

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This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Here’s One Important Thing Conservatives Don’t Know About Secession–But Should

One of the most exciting political developments in recent years has been the secessionist movement, which has flourished among a number of American states and across the globe in places such as Venice and Scotland. The common thread in nearly all these movements has been opposition to the modern nation-state, which secessionists believe has become totalitarian and now hopelessly bankrupt.

Many secessionist groups draw their inspiration from American history–in particular, the country’s founding document, the Declaration of Independence, as well as the southern states’ valiant attempt to secede from the Union in the 1860s. While secessionists have pointed to America’s past for much of their inspiration, one group they seem to have ignored are the Antifederalists.

“Antifederalist” was the term given to those opposed to the ratification of the U.S. Constitution. They were not an insignificant segment of the population and consisted of such luminaries as Sam Adams, Patrick Henry, George Mason, and Richard Henry Lee, who wrote under the pseudonym of the “Federal Farmer.” Still under-appreciated to this day, Lee’s political thought equaled, if not surpassed, those of the more celebrated Founding Fathers.

The Antifederalists correctly predicted that the Constitution would usurp the sovereignty of the individual states and become a highly centralized national state. Moreover, they saw that it granted too much power to the executive branch.

A number of historians believe that at the time, most Americans opposed ratification; and had it not been for some shrewd and, quite frankly, underhanded tactics by their opponents (the Federalists), the Constitution would not have been ratified. Patrick Henry certainly thought so when he wrote: “Let me say, sir, that a great majority of the people even in the adopting states have been shockingly misled.”*

More than two centuries later, their fears have turned into grim reality. History, however, is written by the victors; and the Antifederalists and their perspicacious views have been largely forgotten.

For secessionists, the Antifederalist literature should be a prime reference point to be repeatedly invoked to justify their cause. For secessionists to succeed, the battle of ideas must be first won; and the writings of the Antifederalists provide ample ammunition for those who seek to break away from the corrupt and tyrannical nation-states that dominate the globe.

The future of human liberty and economic well–being depends on the success of the secessionist movements. The political parties of the world, be they “liberal” or “conservative,” have no interest in scaling back the size and scope of the state. Any chance of real reform through the current political system is hopeless since it is rigged to enrich the power and pocketbooks of the political elites.

Thus, all efforts – whether on a practical or an “intellectual” basis, which strengthen the secessionist cause – need to be encouraged and supported by those concerned about the future of freedom. Participation in politics or the electoral process is futile and counterproductive, as the Antifederalists long ago recognized: “But, remember, when the people once part with power, they can seldom or never resume it again by force. Many instances can be produced in which the people have voluntarily increased the powers of their rulers; but few, if any in which rulers have willingly abridged their authority.”**

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The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Mario Draghi’s Continuing War On Europeans

Mario Draghi, the President of the European Central Bank (ECB), is continuing the financial war that he and his fellow central banksters have been waging on the peoples of the world with his latest round of monetary measures. In an unprecedented (but not unexpected) move, Mario the Money-printer announced that the ECB will drop its deposit rate from 0 to -0.1% (“negative interest rate”), in effect charging banks for leaving their funds with the ECB. The other significant measure is the creation of a 400-billion-Euro “liquidity channel” for banks to encourage lending.

Ostensibly, the measures are intended to keep the supposed European recovery from stalling and to stave off any potentiality of “deflation.” Price inflation in Europe has supposedly fallen to 0.5%, which is well below the ECB’s target of 2%. Moreover, the Eurozone’s growth rate for the first quarter was an abysmal 2%–while the official unemployment rate remained at nearly 12%.

None of Draghi’s measures, which in actuality boil down to money printing via bank credit expansion, will accomplish their stated goals. Such polices, to one degree or another, have been tried before and ultimately lead to hyperinflation, the destruction of the currency, and depression. This, however, assumes that central bankers’ primary goal is to “fight deflation,” reduce unemployment, and/or promote growth. It is not.

The principal objective of every central bank is the preservation of the banking system and the governmental authority that privileges it. Unemployment, price inflation, booms, and busts are at best secondary concerns for central banksters.

Central bank “self preservation,” however, comes at a tremendous social cost – the impoverishment of everyone outside of the banking-governmental orbit. The creation of a “liquidity channel,” Quantitative Easing, ZIRP, or whatever other term the economic spinmeisters use are attempts to hide the fact that central banks create money out of thin air, which ultimately results in the transference of wealth to the banking and governing classes of society. This is how the global ruling elites maintain their power and how, in the United States, a world empire is financed.

While the redistribution of wealth via monetary policy enriches the politically-connected financial elite, there are other baneful consequences. Money printing leads to the depreciation of the currency, which manifests itself into a rise in overall prices. Naturally, central banksters and the clueless financial press blame general price increases on other factors – “oil price shocks,” “speculators,” “greedy” businessmen – when, in fact, it is the inflationary actions of the central banks.

While central banks do not (as of yet) use bullets and guns to conduct policy, their actions are still destructive of peoples’ well being (and, for those who oppose the United States empire, quite deadly.) It is undeniable that nearly every single financial crisis that has taken place since the inception of central banking can be traced to their policies.

It is, therefore, unlikely that central banksters would deliberately sabotage the financial system. While they, of course, would suffer a lot less from a collapse than the general public, a hyper-inflationary event and/or a currency crack-up would threaten their power and lead to a search for alternative monetary paradigms. They, thus, will seek to do all in their power to continue the existing fiat monetary order.

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The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Why The Government Is Lying To You About Food…

A recent World Bank report warned of rising global food prices, as if a study (no doubt an expensive one) is needed to explain what everyone who buys food or, for that matter, any commodity, is keenly aware of. “Food price shock,” the report cautioned, “can both spark and exacerbate conflict and political instability, and it is vital to promote polices that work to mitigate these effects.”

Naturally, the report fails to explain the real reason for increases in food prices. Like the lies, distortions, and half truths that used to emanate from the Soviet news agency, Pravda, the World Bank report misleads its readers citing “increasing weather concerns,” “import demand” pressure from China, and “geopolitical tension in the Ukraine” for the escalating food costs.

All of this, of course, is nonsense spoken to bamboozle the public and the naïve financial press that will swallow just about anything that a governmental authority shovels out.

The fundamental reason for skyrocketing food prices is the massive amount of money that has been issued since the start of the financial crisis by the likes of the World Bank, IMF, the Fed, Bank of England, and the ECB.

Not surprisingly, the report contradicts itself. Despite the reasons that it gives for the sharp rise in food prices, it admits that the supply of food worldwide is at an all time high: “. . . prices increased despite bumper crops in 2013 and continued projections of record grain harvests and stronger stocks expected for 2014.” It added that even the political turmoil in the Ukraine  has “not disrupted exports so far.”

So, if supply is at record levels and demand has increased only significantly in China, what accounts for the massive price hikes across the globe? Simple: money creation.

The report, and others like it, speak of the devastating effect that high food prices have on the poor and impoverished. Instead of pointing the finger at themselves or the other international inflation generating agencies, the World Bank has in the past called for income redistribution that never helps the poor, but just lines the pockets of politicians and enlarges the balance sheets of the banksters.

Without the unprecedented money creation of the past half dozen years, food prices would have fallen. Instead, the trillions printed have done inestimable harm to the world’s economies, while the banking and financial sectors have seen record “profits.”

If the World Bank was truly concerned about the impact of higher food prices, it would immediately fold up shop, call for the liquidation of all central banks, and advocate a return to honest money based on a commodity–be it gold or silver. Moreover, any bank or financial institution that did not maintain a reserve requirement of 100% would be shut down, charged with fraud and embezzlement while its perpetrators would be rounded up and either scourged, tarred and feathered–or, at the very least, face a lifetime of hard manual labor.

Such measures are more than justified after what has taken place over the past decade–and all of the mischief and ruination banks have committed throughout history. These or any other meaningful punishments will also act as a deterrent to anyone contemplating such nefarious activity in the future.

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The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom