2015 – WINTER SOLSTICE
This is the darkest night of the year. For the next 6 months, the days (light) become longer.
This is a fine time to dedicate oneself to shedding greater light on monetary policy. A truly dark and invisible issue, monetary policy as this calendar has tried to demonstrate this entire year is essential to understanding and promoting justice, peace and democracy.
We’ve allowed private (corporate) interests to usurp our power to issue our own money to meet our needs and serve the common good. We’ve ignored monetary policy — believing it too complicated to understand, not connected to the issues we care about, and/or promoted by wild and unstable individuals. We focus, thus, instead on budget policies or tax policies as our only available public tools. We’ve also ignored history — those people and groups in our nation and around the world in the past and present who’ve seen the light, become aware and tried to act against the Money Power (which today are banking corporations and central banks, and those they influence in government, academia and the media) to (re)assert real authority over creating and circulating money.
Money is the ultimate paradox — so involved in almost every aspect of our lives yet virtually unknown on how and for whom it’s created and circulated.
It’s time to shed light on money.
1864 –IRON CITY BANK OF PITTSBURGH IS RECHARTED TO BECOME IRON CITY NATIONAL BANK
The bank was recharted under the new 1864 federal banking law.
Corporations possess no inherent inalienable “right” to exist in the US. They exist because the public via government (state and federal) grants “charters” or licenses to exist under terms established by the government. At one time, charters were democratic tools that rigidly defined the extent of their actions, issued for a limited duration.
Banks were, for obvious reasons, THE most rigidly defined and closely controlled type of corporation with precise limitations placed on capital, interest rates, and residency requirements for directors and transparency of their financial books. And, of course, banking corporations, like all corporations, were prohibited from involvement in political or electoral matters as a means to protect the democratic “body politic.”
When banking corporations violated the terms of their charters and acting “ultra vires” (beyond their authority) the public response was routinely to dissolve their charter and either turn over the company to new owners with a new charter or distribute the banks’ assets to those who were victims of the banks’ actions.
Charters remain democratic tools. Corporations remain creations of the state and federal government. However, our history books nowhere contain this example of this expression of self-governance and, thus, our imaginations of how to control corporate actions are limited to corporate fines and legal actions against executives. Bank fines and even imprisonment of bank officials were and still are no substitute responses to profoundly unlawful banking practices compared to what was at one time a common strategy by our forebears: dissolving corporate charters.
1913 – FEDERAL RESERVE ACT PASSES CONGRESS – CREATING FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM
The Act created a largely corporate controlled national banking and currency system, passed in the House by 298-60 and in the Senate by 43-25 and signed by President Wilson on this day. It was a major coup banking corporations through the establishment of a private central bank authorized to “monetize” government debt (i.e. to print their own money and exchange it for government securities or I.O.U.’s). The central banking system was composed of 12 regional private/corporate banks owned by participating commercial banks. All national banks were required to join the system. Banking corporations now controlled the issuance and circulation of our national currency. By controlling our national money faucet, they could create inflation and deflation. This corporate monopolization of our currency allowed for public regulation, but not control. It was now banking corporations, not the US government, that controlled the national currency. The Constitutional power for public creation of our power was handed over to private banking corporations. It’s the ultimate form of “privatization” – more accurately “corporatization” – of what should be a public function or service.
1294 – PAPACY OF POPE BONIFACE VIII BEGINS
Benedetto Gaetani became Pope of the Catholic Church on Christmas Eve, 1294. He instituted the first Christian “Jubilee” in 1300. Jubilee has both Jewish and Christian roots. According to Wikipedia, “The concept of the Jubilee is a special year of remission of sins and universal pardon. In the Biblical Book of Leviticus, a Jubilee year is mentioned to occur every fifty years, in which slaves and prisoners would be freed, debts would be forgiven and the mercies of God would be particularly manifest.” It was also common for land to be returned. Pope Boniface VIII conditioned the forgiving of sins and debt on personal confessions and pilgrimages to sacred sites (i.e. basilicas of St. Peter and St. Paul in Rome) at least once a day for a specified time.
2015 YEARS AGO – CLAIMED BIRTH DATE OF JESUS
In his book, Money and its True Function, author FR Burch said, “As long as Christ confined his teachings to the realm of morality and righteousness, He was undisturbed; it was not till He assailed the established economic system and ‘cast out’ the profiteers and ‘overthrew the tables of the money changers,’ that He was doomed. The following day He was questioned, betrayed on the second tried on the third and on the fourth crucified.”
1983 – DEATH OF ROBERT H. HEMPHILL, CREDIT MANAGER, ATLANTA FEDERAL RESERVE BANK
“This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent on the Commercial Banks. Someone has to borrow every dollar we have in circulation, cash or credit. If the Banks create ample synthetic money, we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are absolutely without a permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture, the tragic absurdity of our hopeless position is almost incredible, but there it is. ”
2015 – “BOXING DAY”
An annual holiday celebrated in the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth nations. Traditionally, it was when servants or employees would receive gifts from their bosses or employers in “Christmas boxes.” Granting business corporations the power to create and distribute money has been the ultimate financial gift that keeps on giving every time banks create a loan “out of thin air” as debt. The lack of awareness in mainstream society of this current monetary reality and alternatives proposals to democratize money creation boxes, or limits, us as self-governing people to use the authority granted to our government to create our own money to distribute funds where we, not banks, believe are most needed.
1945 – IMF AND WORLD BANK “ARTICLES OF AGREEMENT” ENTERED INFO FORCE
The original International Monetary Fund Articles of Agreement were adopted at the United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference at Bretton Woods, NH on July 22, 1944. They were entered into force on this date. Both institutions have used their “money power” of loan making to dictate financial and economic conditions on governments around the world.
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, Deb Jose and Greg Coleridge helped in its development. Please forward this to others and encourage them to subscribe. To subscribe/unsubscribe or to comment on any entry, email firstname.lastname@example.org