2009 — “SWEEPING BANK REFORM BILL CLEARS HOUSE” ARTICLE ON CNN MONEY
“The House passed legislation Friday aimed at preventing the next big financial crisis, ushering in the most sweeping set of changes to the banking regulatory system since the New Deal…
“‘The bailouts of AIG and Bear Stearns would be not possible — made illegal — under this bill,’ [Barney] Frank said. ‘If a company fails, it’ll be put to death.’”
The final legislation, The Dodd-Frank banking “reform” bill, did not break up the too-big-to-fail big banks, make it easier to prosecute fraudulent banksters responsible for causing massive predatory lending that led to mortgage foreclosures, or eliminate many highly risky banking practices (namely continued investments in derivatives).
1791 – FIRST NATIONAL BANK OF THE US OPENS FOR BUSINESS IN PHILADELPHIA
A 20-year charter had been issued by the federal government in 1791 (very unusual at the time since most corporate charters, or licenses, were issued by states) to create the nation’s first private bank. This was the first private institution empowered by the U.S. federal government to create paper money — with all the power and profit that goes along with it. The bank’s paper money was accepted for taxes. Eighty percent of its shares were privately owned. It was modeled on the Bank of England. Within 2 months of its creation, it flooded the market with loans and banknotes and then sharply shifted course and called in many of its loans. The result was the first US securities market crash — what became known as the “Panic of 1792” – the first of many panics, recessions and depressions due to the private/corporate control of our money system. On January 24, 1811, Congress voting to not renew the bank’s charter, thus dissolving the bank. During the first 50 years of the US, legislatures and courts, almost exclusively at the state and federal levels, routinely revoked corporate charters, which were considered democratic instruments and used to control the actions of corporations.
2014 – REMARKS OF STANLEY FISCHER, VICE CHAIR OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD
“I thought that when Dodd-Frank [proposed bank reform legislation] started, that the banks would not succeed in influencing it, having lost all the prestige they lost…Boy, was I wrong.” Remarks at Peterson Institute for International Economics gathering.
1942 – DEATH OF DAVIS RICH DEWEY, AMERICAN ECONOMIST AND STATISTICIAN
“The underlying idea in the greenback philosophy…is that the issue of currency is a function of government, a sovereign right which ought not to be delegated to corporations.”
1953 – BIRTH OF BEN BERNANKE, CHAIRMAN OF THE US FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM
The Federal Reserve is a largely private system, despite the word “Federal” in its title. The 12 Regional Federal Reserve banks are private (e.g. Fed banks appear in the business not government pages of phone books and its employees are not on the government payrolls).
Bernanke said on May 17, 2007:
“All that said, given the fundamental factors in place that should support the demand for housing, we believe the effect of the troubles in the subprime sector on the broader housing market will likely be limited, and we do not expect significant spillovers from the subprime market to the rest of the economy or to the financial system. The vast majority of mortgages, including even subprime mortgages, continue to perform well. Past gains in house prices have left most homeowners with significant amounts of home equity, and growth in jobs and incomes should help keep the financial obligations of most households manageable.”
Less than 1 year later, the housing market collapsed.
On October 31, 2007 he stated: “It is not the responsibility of the Federal Reserve – nor would it be appropriate – to protect lenders and investors from the consequences of their financial decisions.”
Turned out the Fed provided $1.2 trillion in secret loans to many of the nation’s biggest banks from 2007-9, which allowed them to grow even bigger. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-11-28/secret-fed-loans-undisclosed-to-congress-gave-banks-13-billion-in-income.html
This bail out of Wall Street by the Fed was not accompanied by any bail out of Main Street (small businesses) or the side streets (homeowners). The Fed served its constituents – banks.
2009 – DEATH OF PAUL A. SAMUELSON, ECONOMIST, AUTHOR OF ECONOMICS, AN INTRODUCTORY ANALSYS (BEST SELLING ECONOMICS TEXTBOOK OF ALL TIME)
“Few understand that all our money arises out of debt and IOU operations. The banking system as a whole can do what each small bank cannot do: it can expand its loans and investments many times the new reserves of cash created for it, even though each small bank is lending out only a fraction of its deposits.”
1799 – DEATH OF GEORGE WASHINGTON, FIRST US PRESIDENT
The First Bank of the United States (the 2nd central bank, privately owned) was chartered for 20 years by Congress and signed into law by George Washington, the first President of the United States under the US Constitution. At the end of the 20 years, Congress determined the bank did not serve the public interest and, therefore, did not renew its charter.
1793 – BIRTH OF HENRY CAREY, PRESIDENT LINCOLN’S CHIEF ECONOMIC ADVISOR
Carey advised Lincoln on creating public money, Greenbacks, rather than take loans from private banks. He helped prevent the destruction of Greenbacks by the National Banking Act and its subsequent modifications (which were presented as monetary “reforms”) by banks but with the intent of eliminating Greenbacks.
2008 – PNC FINANCIAL SERVICES CORPORATION ACQUIRES NATIONAL CITY BANKING CORPORATION
The Federal Reserve Board announced that it has approved the application of PNC Financial Services to acquire National City Corporation. PNC was a major recipient of federal bailout funds. Rather than use the funds to help distressed underwater homeowners, the Pittsburgh based banking corporation used the funds to acquire Cleveland-based National City Bank, and thus, contributing to a further consolidation and concentration of the “too-big-to-fail” banking industry in the United States.
1863 – BIRTH OF GEORGE SANTAYANA, PHILOSOPHER
“Those you cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
[Note: Providing financial institutions the power to create and distribute money has in the past been economically, if not politically, harmful to the vast majority of individuals. It remains so in the present.]
2014 – PRESIDENT OBAMA SIGNS FEDERAL SPENDING BILL WITH A BANK BAILOUT PROVISION
The $1.1 trillion spending bill contained a “rider,” or separate provision, that bails out banking corporations if their speculative derivative investments tank. The rider was essentially identical language contained in an earlier bill, HR 992, which was largely written by lobbyists of Citigroup Corporation, according to emails obtained by the New York Times. The rider weakened the already weak Dodd-Frank bank “reform” legislation.
1784 – BIRTH OF WILLIAM LYON MACKENZIE KING, 10TH PRIME MINISTER OF CANADA (1935-1948)
“Once a nation parts with the control of its currency and credit, it matters not who makes the nations laws. Usury, once in control, will wreck any nation. Until the control of the issue of currency and credit is restored to government and recognized as its most sacred responsibility, all talk of the sovereignty of parliament and of democracy is idle and futile.”
2010 – NATIONAL EMERGENCY EMPLOYMENT DEFENSE (NEED) ACT, HR 6550, IS INTRODUCED IN CONGRESS
Congressman Kucinich (D-OH) introduced a dramatic new proposal to establish fiscal integrity, reassert Congressional sovereignty and regain control of monetary policy from private banks. The NEED Act would allow the federal government to directly fund badly-needed infrastructure repairs and fund education systems nationwide by spending money into circulation without increasing the national debt. The bill would end the current practice of fractional reserve lending, whereby the economy depends upon private financial institutions to lend money into circulation.
Congressman Kucinich stated, “The staggeringly bad employment and economic numbers represent a massive problem which cries out for bold action. Rather than crossing our fingers and hoping that banks will finally lend some of the billions of public dollars they haven’t thus far seen fit to lend, we can take action. My bill would replace the Federal Reserve System’s dependence on private banks to create credit. In its place, a Monetary Authority under the Treasury Department would directly inject liquidity into the economy by purchasing much-needed public infrastructure repair. Today, we have idle capital, millions of able-bodied but unemployed workers, unused equipment, and record low interest rates. These conditions are the best possible time to make a long-term investment in our nation’s infrastructure. My bill would do exactly that.”
The bill was reintroduced in 2011, (HR 2990)
1977 – DEATH OF MARRINER S. ECCLES, FORMER CHAIRMAN AND GOVERNOR OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM
“That is what our money system is. If there were no debts in our money system, there wouldn’t be any money. ”
2013 – STATEMENT BY ROBERT FRANK, CNBC REPORTER AND EDITOR, “QE: THE GREATEST SUBSITY TO THE RICH EVER”
“The largesse of the Federal Reserve over the past five years has amounted to one of the largest ever subsidies to the American wealthy – fueling record fortunes, record numbers of new millionaires and billionaires, and an unprecedented shopping spree for everything from Ferraris to Francis Bacon paintings. The prices of the assets owned by the wealthy, and the things they buy, have gone parabolic, bearing little relationship to the weak, broader economy.
More millionaires have been created over the past five years than during the entire eight years of the Bush administration. According to Spectrem Group, there were 2.3 million new millionaires created between 2008 and 2012. This year, the number will likely grow by at least 200,000, which would bring the millionaire population past its previous record in 2007.
[…] According to Wealth-X, the top 10 billionaires in America saw their fortunes grow by a combined $101.8 billion this year. […] Fed policy has fueled a surge in the value of financial assets. Since the wealthiest 5% of Americans own 60% of financial assets, and the top 10% own 80% of the stocks, those gains in financial assets have gone disproportionately to a small group at the top.”
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
To see the calendar year-to-date, go to https://monetarycalendar.wordpress.com/