384 BC – BIRTH OF ARISTOTLE
“The most hated sort of wealth getting is usury, which makes again out of money itself and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest, which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money…of all modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural.”
“Money exists not by nature but by law.” This is one of the most insightful comments on money of all time.
871 – REIGN OF KING ALFRED OF ENGLAND BEGINS
King Alfred (Alfred the Great) implemented a law that moneylenders who took usury would forfeit all their possessions to the King.
1616 – DEATH OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE. HE WAS BORN ON THE EXACT SAME DATE IN 1564
“Poor? Look upon his face. What call you rich?
Let them coin his nose, let them coin his cheeks.”
– From The First Part of King Henry the Fourth, act 3, sc 3
The word “coin” is a verb, a common usage of the period. The same is true in the phrase “To coin Money” in Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution, which gives the legislative branch the authority to “create” or “coin” our nation’s money supply. Was true then. Is still true now. Yet, banking corporations have largely usurped this public authority – creating money as debt, loaned to the government, which must be paid back with interest. Insane.
2014 – PUBLICATION OF ARTICLE IN FINANCIAL TIMES: “STRIP PRIVATE BANKS OF THEIR POWER TO CREATE MONEY” BY MARTIN WOLF, CHIEF FINANCIAL WRITER
Since banks create money out of thin air, they should be stripped of this power, and limited to normal depository functions. Wolf indicates the centrality and importance of the issue with his subtitle: “The giant hole at the heart of our market economies needs to be plugged.”
2012 – PUBLISHED ARTICLE, “TARP OVERSEER DEBUNKS BAILOUT MYTHS: BIG COMPANIES HAVEN’T REPAID TARP FUNDS…AND FUNDS TO HELP HOMEOWNERS HAVEN’T BEEN PAID”
“Apologists for government bailouts push two main myths:
-That all of the bailout funds have been repaid
-That the bailouts helped the average American
But the official government overseer of the Tarp bailout program – the special inspector general for TARP, Christy L. Romero – has debunked both myths.
Today, Romero wrote the following to Congress:
After 3½ years, the Troubled Asset Relief Program (“TARP”) continues to be an active and significant part of the Government’s response to the financial crisis. It is a widely held misconception that TARP will make a profit. The most recent cost estimate for TARP is a loss of $60 billion. Taxpayers are still owed $118.5 billion (including $14 billion written off or otherwise lost).”
1914 – DEATH OF GEORGE ‘DIVING RIGHT’ BAER, PRESIDENT OF THE PHILADELPHIA & READING RAILROAD CORPORATION, WHICH WAS OWNED BY BANKER J.P. MORGAN
“The rights and interests of the laboring man will be protected and cared for, not by the labor agitators, but by the Christian men to whom God in His infinite wisdom has given the control of the property interests of the country, and upon the successful management of which so much depends”
1637 – HOLLAND SUSPENDS ALL CONTRACTS DURING TULIPMANIA BUBBLE
Tulip mania or tulipomania (1636-37) was a period during which contract prices for new tulip bulbs in Holland exceeded more than 10 times the annual income of a skilled craftsman. It is generally considered the first recorded speculative bubble (or economic bubble). People from all walks of life sold homes and land at low prices just to speculate on the rising tulip prices. Prices suddenly collapsed in February 1637. By March, tulip prices had crashed by 90 percent or more. There were widespread defaults on purchased contracts. Long-term economic decline followed. The suspension of contracts gave the seller the right to sell contracted bulbs at market prices.
2009 – COMMENT BY DICK DURBIN, US SENATOR, ILLINOIS
“And the banks — hard to believe in a time when we’re facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created — are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place.”
What was a refreshing bit of true reality in 2009 is even truer today. The finance, insurance and real estate (FIRE) sector tops all sectors in political campaign contributions (or are they investments?) to Washington politicians. The return on their investments are substantial – no indictments of top bankers responsible for the 2008 sub-prime crisis and financial implosion, bailouts galore…and, of course the continuation of the license to print debt money that is loaned to the US – at interest.
1937 – BIRTH OF SADDAM HUSSEIN, IRAQI PRESIDENT/DICTATOR
Hussein announced in November 2000 that Iraq would no longer accept dollars, only euros, as payment for Iraqi oil. The inherent strength of the US dollar for decades has been passed on the “petrodollar” – the policy that only dollars could be used to purchase oil from any nation. An end or even serious threat to the petrodollar system would reduce the dollar’s value – causing severe economic decline in the US. Many believe this announcement was the major reason, not anything to do directly with the 9/11 attacks in the US, for the US invasion of Iraq.
1947 – DEATH OF IRVING FISHER, PROFESSOR AND ECONOMIST
“Thus our national circulating medium is now at the mercy of loan transactions of banks, which lend, not money, but promises to supply money they do not possess. ”
2006 – DEATH OF JOHN KENNETH GALBRAITH, AMERICAN ECONOMIST, PUBLIC OFFICIAL AND DIPLOMAT
“In numerous years following the Civil War, the Federal Government ran a heavy surplus. But it could not pay off its debt, retire its securities, because to do so meant there would be no more bonds to back the national bank notes. The pay off the debt was to destroy the money supply.”
The same is true today. Since most money is created as debt via loans (to individuals, corporations and the government), paying off the debt would reduce the money supply. A severe depression would inevitable result since not enough money would exist to permit all our economic transactions. The solution is not to “reform” our debt-based money system, but to replace it with a system where money is created debt-free.
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/
A second historical calendar, the REAL Democracy History Calendar, in many ways complements this calendar. For information, go to https://realdemocracyhistorycalendar.wordpress.com/about/