1913 – NATIONAL CITIZENS LEAGUE FOR THE PROMOTION OF A SOUND BANKING SYSTEM SENDS LETTER TO MEMBERS
Backed by bankers and other businesspersons, the League was established to promote a national private central bank. Their letter to their members on this date stated:
“Congress is wavering over the question of banking reform. The Democratic leaders are undecided whether to bring in a currency bill at the special session in the Spring or defer action until the regular session next December …
President-elect Wilson has been quoted as holding the view that public sentiment as to banking reform has not yet crystallized.
Write to Mr. Wilson if you know him. If you don’t know him, it is a good way to get acquainted.
The National Citizens’ League has 10,000 members and a million friends. If every member of the League and every friend of banking reform does his duty, Congress will have substantive evidence that the business world is not indifferent…”
2016 – GROUNDHOG DAY
The 1993 film, Groundhog Day, tells the story of a TV weatherman who is caught in a time loop — repeating the same day over and over. This is similar to how most nation’s respond to being in debt: by borrowing more money and going into more debt — over and over. It’s an economically destructive loop that forces nations to impose austerity on the majority of its citizens while enriching the elite. Only when the weatherman in the film acts with compassion is the loop broken. And only when nations understand that money can be created not as debt but as assets interest- and inflation-free to meet the physical and human needs of people will the debt loop be broken.
1690 – FIRST PAPER CURRENCY IN BRITISH COLONIES ISSUED
Massachusetts becomes the first British colony to issue paper money. The money was used to facilitate economic transactions in the absence of British money.
1913 – RATIFICATION OF THE 16TH AMENDMENT, ESTABLISHMENT OF THE US FEDERAL INCOME TAX
The income tax provides a guaranteed and consistent source of income for the payment of any federal government function, including payment of interest on national debt. It was ratified earlier in the same year as passage of the Federal Reserve Act, which turned over the nation’s money power to a private central bank. Many economists believe the dollar holds its value better than the Euro in times of economic crisis since US interest payments from debt can be covered by US income taxes. There is no equivalent European income tax to cover Euro debts. This provides investors greater confidence in the dollar over the Euro.
1924 – DEATH OF WOODROW WILSON, 28TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND SIGNER OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE ACT
“Some of the biggest men in the United States in the field of commerce and manufacture are afraid of something. They know that there is a power somewhere so organized, so subtle, so watchful, so interlocked, so complete, so passive, that they had better not speak above their breath when they speak in condemnation of it.”
“A great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit. Our system of credit is privately concentrated. The growth of the nation, therefore, and all our activities are in the hands of a few men, who, even if their action be honest and intended for the public interest, are necessarily concentrated upon the great undertakings in which their own money is involved and who necessarily, by very reason of their own limitations, chill and check and destroy genuine economic freedom. (1911)
[Note: Despite such misgivings, Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act two years later]
2013 – BANKING REFORM BILL INTRODUCED IN UNITED KINGDOM
The “Banking Reform Bill” was introduced in the House of Commons. It “would provide regulators with new authority to break up a bank if its investment activities put deposits at risk. The legislation goes a step beyond previously proposed policies that would merely require banks to separate retail banking from investment banking. Under the proposed legislation, in addition to requiring that institutions ring-fence deposits, the Bank of England could force an institution to sell off certain businesses if it determines that the institution has failed to protect retail banking activities from high-risk investments. The bill also would, among other things, provide depositors preference if a bank becomes insolvent, and set new leverage caps.”
1953 – BIRTH OF GIANNINA BRASCHI, PUERTO RICAN POET, NOVELIST AND ESSAYIST
“Banks are the temples of America.”
1756 – BIRTH OF AARON BURR, POLITICIAN, BUSINESSPERSON, VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
Burr and others convinced New York City council to charter the Manhattan Corporation in 1799. Its purpose was to raise dams and divert water throughout the city in response to the outbreak of yellow fever. A provision of the charter allowing the company to divert its excess capital in any activity “not inconsistent with the Constitution and laws of the United States.” This vague clause enabled the company to engage in banking activities. Alexander Hamilton (who later Burr killed in a famous duel) said, “He (Burr) has latterly, by a trick, established a bank — a perfect monster in its principles, but a very convenient instrument of profit and influence.” The Manhattan Corporation was the predecessor of what is now the J.P. Morgan Chase bank – one of the largest financial institutions in the U.S.
2013 – TALK BY ADAIR TURNER ON “DEBT, MONEY AND MEPHISTOPHELES: HOW DO WE GET OUT OF THIS MESS?”
In this speech Turner discussed an alternative to Quantitative Easing, which he termed Overt Money Finance (also known as Sovereign Money or Public Money or Government Money).
1870 – HEPBURN V GRISWOLD US SUPREME COURT DECISION
The Court declared that certain parts of the passed Congressional Legal Tender acts in the 1860’s were unconstitutional. The Legal Tender acts authorized the government to issue paper money, “Greenbacks”, and recognized it as legal to meet financial obligations. The Court concluded, however, that a party to a contract could not use paper money as payment for a debt if the contract stipulated gold or silver as payment. The Court explained how the US Congress possessed the power to coin money, but that that power was different than the power to make paper money legal.
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