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.
2014 – IMF APPROVES $17.01 BILLION LOAN TO UKRAINE IN EXCHANGE FOR “ECONOMIC REFORMS”
The IMF money comes with stringent terms, what used to be called “Structural Adjustment Programs,” which includes spending cuts, privatization/corporatization of public assets, laying off of public employees, increased prices and debt restructuring. IMF loans in essence transfer economic sovereignty domestically to international bankers. In the case of Ukraine, the requirements include a 50 percent increase in the price of gas for households, as well as a quick pension reform and lower government spending.
The World Bank warned on April 10 that the loan terms set by the IMF would cut 2014 consumption in Ukraine by 8 percent, as well as erode capital investment.
1871 — KNOX V LEE US SUPREME COURT DECISION
This decision was one of several popularly known “Legal Tender Cases” during this period (the others were Hepburn v. Griswold and Julliard v Greenman). The Supreme Court reversed their earlier decision in Hepburn v. Griswold (1870). The decision upheld the Legal Tender Act declaring that making paper money legal tender did not conflict with US Constitution (Article 1). The decision allowed debtors to repay debts in Greenbacks rather than gold or silver.
2012— SPEECH BY FEDERAL RESERVE GOVERNOR DANIEL TARULLO AT THE COUNCIL OF FOREIGN RELATIONS
“It is sobering to recognize that, more than four years after the failure of Bear Stearns began the acute phase of the financial crisis, so much remains to be done–in implementing reforms that have already been developed, in modifying or supplementing these reforms as needed, and in fashioning a reform program to address shadow banking concerns. For some time my concern has been that the momentum generated during the crisis will wane or be redirected to other issues before reforms have been completed.” [Note: The political influence of financial corporations has prevented any serious banking and monetary reforms from being passed. Those that were passed have been watered-down during the implementation phase out of public spotlight thanks to intense lobbying from the same financial corporations]
1939 – TESTIMONY OF GRAHAM TOWERS, GOVERNOR OF THE BANK OF CANADA (1934-54) BEFORE CANADIAN SELECT STANDING COMMITTEE ON BANKING AND COMMERCE
Question: “But there is no question about it, that banks create that medium of exchange?” [i.e., bank deposits]
Towers: “That is right. That is what they are for.”
Question: “And they issue that medium of exchange when they purchase securities or make loans?”
Towers: “That is the banking business, just in the way that a steel plant makes steel.” (p. 287)
Towers testified that just as steel corporations create steel, banking corporations create money. The difference is that steel corporations start with iron ore and apply labor and technology. Banks, by contrast, create money out of thin air…as debt.
2011— “REDUCING U.S DEBT AND CREATING JOBS THROUGH PUBLIC CONTROL OF OUR MONEY SYSTEM” BY STEPHEN ZARLENGA AND GREG COLERIDGE, HUFFINGTON POST
“Be it for ignorance or by intention, few federal elected officials have examined how a change in the way money in our nation is created and issued could reduce our nation’s deficit and debt and, in doing so, increase millions of vital jobs to transform our economy.
One of the few exceptions is Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), who during the last Congressional session introduced H.R. 6550, The National Emergency Employment Defense Act.
The three essential measures include:
1. Moving the mostly private Federal Reserve System under the US Treasury Department…
2. Making the power to issue money a public function — bypassing the current system, which invited the careless and risky lending that, led to the global economic crisis…
3. Enabling the U.S. government to use its money power — creating and spending money into circulation — to address pressing infrastructure needs such as repairing our crumbling roads, bridges, rails and highways…
The irony is that these three provisions would institutionalize what most Americans falsely believe already exists: That the Federal Reserve is public. That banks only loan money that they possess. That the government creates our money. Wrong on all counts.”
1970 – IRISH BANKERS STRIKE – LIFE GOES ON
Irish bank employees go on strike over low wages. Over 85% of the country’s reserves were immediately locked down. The strike continued into the summer. By then, something odd happened — not much happened.
According to the Central Bank of Ireland, “The Irish economy continued to function for a reasonably long period of time with its main clearing banks closed for business.” The strike lasted for 6 months.
What did the Irish do for money?
“The Irish started issuing their own cash. After the bank closures, they continued writing checks to one another as usual, the only difference being that they could no longer be cashed at the bank. Instead, that other dealer in liquid assets – the Irish pub – stepped in to fill the void…
“In no time, people forged a radically decentralized monetary system with the country’s 11,000 pubs as its key nodes and basic trust as its underlying mechanism. By the time the banks finally reopened in November, the Irish had printed an incredible £5 billion in homemade currency…
“Some checks had been issued by companies, others were scribbled on the backs of cigar boxes, or even on toilet paper. According to historians, the reason the Irish were able to manage so well without banks was all down to social cohesion…
“[O]f course there were problems…Irish companies had a harder time acquiring capital for big investments. Indeed, the very fact that people began do-it-yourself banking makes it patently clear that they couldn’t do without some kind of financial sector…
“But what they could do perfectly well without was all the smoke and mirrors, all the risky speculation, the glittering skyscrapers, and the towering bonuses paid out of taxpayers’ pockets. ‘Maybe, just maybe,’ the author and economist Umair Haque conjectures, ‘banks need people a lot more than people need banks.’ ”
2005 – QUOTE BY ALAN GREENSPAN, CHAIRMAN OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE
“The use of a growing array of derivatives and the related application of more-sophisticated approaches to measuring and managing risk are key factors underpinning the greater resilience of our largest financial institutions. Derivatives have permitted the unbundling of financial risks.”
[NOTE: Three years later, the U.S. financial system imploded, causing what was called the “Great Recession,” but for many was a depression that resulted in lost homes, jobs and opportunities.]
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 email@example.com
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/