1753 – DEATH OF GEORGE BERKELEY, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF CLOYNE IRELAND, PHILOSOPHER
Berkeley wrote The Querest in 1735. It was written as questions, which suggested their own answers. On whether money has inherent value, he asked/wrote: “Whether money is to be considered as having an intrinsic value, or as being a commodity, a standard, a measure, or a pledge as is variously suggested by writers? On the evolution of exchange and money, “Whether in the rude original society the first step was not the exchanging of commodities, the next a substitution of metals by weight as the common medium of circulation, after this the making use of coin, lastly a further refinement by the use of paper with proper marks and signatures? And whether as it is the last so it be not the greatest improvement? And whether money be not in truth tickets or tokens for conveying and recording such power, and whether it be of great consequence what materials the tickets are made of.”
1875 – U.S. CONGRESS PASSES SPECIE RESUMPTION ACT
Wall Street bankers hated federal Greenbacks (U.S. created debt-free money issued by the administration of Republican President Abraham Lincoln.). They preferred “hard money” or “specie” money (paper money backed by gold), since the major banks controlled most of the nation’s gold. Ohio Senator John Sherman (so close was he to the First National Bank of New York that the bank was dubbed “Fort Sherman”) was the major advocate of the Specie Resumption Act, passed during the lame-duck controlled Congress (where have we heard that before). The Act legislated the U.S. Treasury to resume the issuance of legal tender notes backed only by gold (Greenbacks were only backed by the faith and credit of the US). The Act also took steps to reduce the amount of Greenbacks in circulation — a step toward the creation of bank issued debt-money that the government would borrow from them at interest vs using government money without having to pay interest. Farmers and small manufactures opposed the Act, fearful that a contraction of the money supply would lead to a recession or depression. The Act took effect on January 1, 1879. It was a major step toward the re-consolidation of the nation’s money supply and economy toward the Money Trust.
2009 – DEATH OF CHARLES WALTERS, FOUNDER OF ACRES MAGAZINE, A VOICE FOR ECO-AGRICULTURE
“Once upon a time the nobles of Europe believed they had accomplished the physical impossibility of perpetual interest simply by owning all the land and raking in tribute from the peasantry, and when death finally pulled down an economic maggot, then there was always the heir. The historical showdown arrived, of course, and the ‘new nobles’ were forced to invent a more subtle form of tribute taking. It came on as debt, interest, compound interest, and all the institutional arrangements required to make the producing community share its income with the creditor. For centuries the details have stacked up, but economists [by and large] have failed to draw the appropriate conclusions.”
1911 – ISSUANCE OF PAMPHLET SUGGESTING PLAN FOR NATIONAL PRIVATE CENTRAL BANK
US Senator Nelson Aldrich introduced a plan for creation of a national private central bank based on the conclusions developed by bankers who met secretly on Jekyll Island. GA. The Citizens League, later the National Citizens League, was formed to promote the plan. The establishment of the Federal Reserve System was the event result of the plan.
1706 – BIRTH OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
“The colonies would gladly have borne the little tax on tea and other matters had it not been that England took away from the colonies their money, which created unemployment and dissatisfaction. The inability of the colonists to get power to issue their own money permanently out of the hands of George III and the international bankers was the prime reason for the revolutionary war.”
“This effect of paper currency is not understood in England. And indeed the whole is a mystery to the politicians how we have been able to continue a war for four years without money and how we could pay with paper that had no previously fixed fund appropriated specifically to redeem it. This currency…is a wonderful machine.”
1863 – BIRTH OF LLOYD GEORGE, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER, 1916-1922
“The international bankers swept statesmen, politicians, journalists and jurists all to one side and issued their order with the imperiousness of absolute monarchs.”
1910 – BIRTH OF KENNETH BOULDING, ECONOMIST, PROFESSOR, PEACE ACTIVIST, QUAKER
“Anyone who believes exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist.”
1859 – BIRTH OF CHARLES LINDBURGH, SR., REPUBLICAN US REPRESENTATIVE AND FATHER OF THE FAMOUS AVIATOR
“Ever since the Civil War Congress has allowed the bankers to control financial legislation. The membership of the Finance Committee in the Senate (now the Banking and Currency Committee) and the Committee on Banking and Currency in the House have been made up chiefly of bankers, their agents and their attorneys. These committees have controlled the nature of bills to be reported, the extent of them, and debates that were to be held on them when they were being considered in the Senate and the House.”
“This [Federal Reserve] Act establishes the most gigantic trust on earth. When the president signs this bill, the invisible government by the monetary power will be legalized. The people may not know it immediately but the day of reckoning is only a few years removed, the worst legislative crime of the ages perpetrated by this bank bill.”
Why this calendar? Many people have questions about the root causes of our economic problems. Some questions involve money, banks and debt. How is money created? Why do banks control its quantity? How has the money system been used to liberate (not often) and oppress (most often) us? And how can the money system be “democratized” to rebuild our economy and society, create jobs and reduce debt?
Our goal is to inform, intrigue and inspire through bite size weekly postings listing important events and quotes from prominent individuals (both past and present) on money, banking and how the money system can help people and the planet. We hope the sharing of bits of buried history will illuminate monetary and banking issues and empower you with others to create real economic and political justice.
This calendar is a project of the Northeast Ohio American Friends Service Committee. Adele Looney, Phyllis Titus, Donna Schall, Leah Davis, Alice Francini and Greg Coleridge helped in its development.
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