2014 – “DETHRONE ‘KING DOLLAR’ OPED, NEW YORK TIMES BY JARED BERNSTEIN
“There are few truisms about the world economy, but for decades, one has been the role of the United States dollar as the world’s reserve currency. It’s a core principle of American economic policy. After all, who wouldn’t want their currency to be the one that foreign banks and governments want to hold in reserve?
But new research reveals that what was once a privilege is now a burden, undermining job growth, pumping up budget and trade deficits and inflating financial bubbles. To get the American economy on track, the government needs to drop its commitment to maintaining the dollar’s reserve-currency status.”
2014 – “A POSSIBLE TIPPING POINT FOR SCOTLAND” ARTICLE PUBLISHED ON POSITIVE MONEY WEBSITE
This is an excerpt from James Robertson’s newsletter:
“Scotland will hold a referendum on 18 September. It will decide whether the outcome will be “Yes, Scotland will be independent” or “No, Better Together“…
If the result is independence for Scotland, one particular question will be especially interesting: Money. It hasn’t been decided what currency an independent Scotland should use…
At present there is a comparatively high level of support in Scotland for a Yes referendum vote. But the prospective danger of expulsion from the UK sterling currency might start a shift of opinion towards a cautious No. If that happens, what rabbit could the Scottish National Party leader, Alex Salmond, and his colleagues pull out of their hat to counteract the shift?
It could be monetary reform. Alex Salmond could announce that the present Scottish Government is preparing a feasibility study in the light of the developments at Item 2 above. The study would report on whether, after winning a Yes referendum, an independent Scotland should adopt a democratic currency with a money supply created as a debt-free public service to society as a whole, instead of the present money supply created as debt by commercial banks at great profit to themselves and great cost to society at large.” http://positivemoney.org/2014/08/possible-tipping-point-scotland/
[NOTE: While the Scots voted against independence, sovereignty continues to be discussed there by more people in more countries in Europe and beyond – not only political sovereignty but monetary sovereignty – which, of course, is directly connected to political sovereignty. As the Greek experience shows, elected a government committed to investing in people is virtually impossible if you don’t have your own national currency and you are heavily indebted to financial institutions.]
1632 – BIRTH OF JOHN LOCKE, ENGLISH PHILOSOPHER
“Observe well these rules: It is a very common mistake to say that money is a commodity…Bullion is valued by its weight…money is valued by its stamp.”
1786 – BEGINNING OF SHAYS’ REBELLION
Sparked in large part by personal debt, nonpayment of salaries, and collapse of the national currency, farmers in Massachusetts, led by Daniel Shays, attack a US Armory. The lack of a focused response to the uprisings led to calls to reforming the Articles of Confederation. The Philadelphia Convention, which followed, rather than reforming the Articles of Confederation, created a new more centralized Constitution. While less democratic in many ways (as it was drafted by and gave exclusive rights only to white, male landowners), the new Constitution empowered the government to coin its own money, separate from banks and financial institutions.
2005 – DEATH OF JUDE THADDEUS WANNISKI, AMERICAN JOURNALIST AND POLITICAL ECONOMIST
“There was a big party at Morgan Stanley after the Mexican peso devaluation, people from all over Wall Street came, they drank champagne and smoked cigars and congratulated themselves on how they pulled it off and they made a fortune.”
1930 – BIRTH OF WARREN BUFFET, INVESTOR
“Derivatives are financial weapons of mass destruction.”
1959 – ROBERT B. ANDERSON, SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY UNDER PRESIDENT EISENHOWER
“When a bank makes a loan it simply adds to the borrowers’ deposit account in the bank by the amount of the loan. The money is not taken from anyone else’s deposit; it was not previously paid in to the bank by anyone. It’s new money, created by the bank for the use of the borrower.”
1764 – PASSAGE OF BRITISH CURRENCY ACT
The Act banned Colonial paper money as legal tender, severely limiting commerce and widening the trade deficit between England and the Colonies. Colonists were forced to pay their taxes only in gold or silver. Many, including Benjamin Franklin, claimed this was one of the major triggers, if not the major trigger, of the Revolutionary War.
1894 – DATE AMERICAN BANKERS ASSOCIATION CALLS ON BANKS TO STOP LOANING MONEY TO CAUSE FORECLOSURES
American Bankers Association memo (as submitted into the Congressional Record): “On September 1, 1894, we will not renew our loans under any consideration. On September 1st we will demand our money. We will foreclose and become mortgagers in possession. We can take two-thirds of the farms west of the Mississippi, and thousands of them east of the Mississippi as well, at our own price… Then the farmers will become tenants as in England…”
1839 – BIRTH OF HENRY GEORGE, ECONOMIST, POLITICIAN AND AUTHOR OF “PROGRESS AND POVERTY”
“[I]t is the business of government to issue money…To leave it to every one who chose to do so to issue money would be to entail general inconvenience and loss, to offer many temptations to roguery, and to put the poorer classes of society at a great disadvantage. These obvious considerations have everywhere, as society became well organized, led to the recognition of the coinage of money as an exclusive function of government. When, in the progress of society, a further labor-saving improvement becomes possible by the substitution of paper for the precious metals as the material for money, the reasons why the issuance of this money should be made a government function become still stronger. The evils entailed by wildcat banking in the United States are too well remembered to need reference. The loss and inconvenience, the swindling and corruption that flowed from the assumption by each State of the Union of the power to license banks of issue ended with the war, and no one would now go back to them. Yet instead of doing what every public consideration impels us to, and assuming wholly and fully as the exclusive function of the General Government the power to issue paper money, the private interests of bankers have, up to this, compelled us to the use of a hybrid currency, of which a large part, though guaranteed by the General Government, is issued and made profitable to corporations.”
1877 – BIRTH OF FREDERICK SODDY, NOBEL PRIZE RECIPIENT (CHEMISTRY) AND MONETARY REFORM AUTHOR
“There is nothing left now for us but to get ever deeper and deeper into debt to the banking system in order to provide the increasing amounts of money the nation requires for its expansion and growth. Our money system is nothing better than a confidence trick.”
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 the original 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. It is currently updated by Greg Coleridge. 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/