By Greg Coleridge
May 10, 2022
By Greg Coleridge
May 10, 2022
Selected articles, columns, editorials, letters, sermons, poems, talks and testimonies over four decades on economic, environmental and social justice; democracy; foreign policy/peace/nonviolence and systemic change/movements. Their analysis and calls to action are as timely today as ever.
Greg Coleridge is Co-Director of the national Move to Amend coalition, which works to enact a Constitutional Amendment to abolish corporate constitutional rights (“corporate personhood” for short) and political money defined as First Amendment-protected “free speech.” He previously worked for more than three decades for the Midwest Region of the American Friends Service Committee in Ohio where he educated, advocated and organized with diverse individuals and organizations at the local, state and national levels employing a range of strategies and tactics on issues of peace/anti-war, nonviolence, international trade, economic conversion, local and federal budget priorities, monetary reform, housing, privatization/corporatization of public services, hunger, jobs, poverty, local currencies, alternative media, toxic/radioactive pollution, campaign finance reform and corporate power/rule/rights.
301 pages. $14.95
Table of Contents
More defense dollars only worsen inflation (letter to editor) 4
North’s secrecy was objectionable (letter to editor) 5
KSU/May 4 and the need for action (letter to editor) 5
The Future of National Security and Economic Conversion (talk) 6
Agenda for the peace builders (editorial) 9
Spirituality, Nonviolence and Social Change (sabbatical report) 12
Nonviolent Revolution (sermon) 21
Bosnia: Military Intervention Is Not The Answer (letter to editor) 26
A few resolutions for public officials (letter to editor) 27
Gift-buying for the conscientious (column) 28
Visions of an alternative “Contract” for America’s cities (editorial) 31
Nuclear weapons still addictive (column) 34
Submarine floats as cities sink (column) 38
No need for bombs – Japan on verge of surrender (letter to editor) 41
U.S. must learn from the past (column) 42
Do we live to U.N. standards (column) 47
Put people power back on agenda (article) 50
GM strike localizes world woes (column) 55
The Costs of Technology (article) 59
U.S. takes easy way out on China (column) 63
Our Friend John (poem) 69
Has time for HOURS finally come? (column) 70
Apathy Funeral Service (talk) 73
Ethics and the Culture of Development: Building a Sustainable Economy (Cuba conference report) 75
Change in Relationship to Corporations Urged (talk) 78
Yes-Simple math: Less money, more democracy (editorial) 80
A Call for Help for Uniontown, Ohio (article) 82
Public Hearing sponsored by Robert Martin, U.S. EPA Ombudsman, on Industrial Excess Landfill (testimony) 84
Democracy, Corporations and the World Trade Organization (article) 88
Wrong Turn in Ohio: A wake up call for other states (article) 90
Rumors of USA Democracy Counterfeit (article) 92
Personal Reflections on 9/11 (letter) 99
Corporate Invading and Escaping (article) 103
Evolution and Social Change (article) 107
U.S. Hypocrisy and Immorality (talk) 108
The Invasion has Begun…But so has the Resistance (spoken word) 109
Citizens over Corporations: A Brief History of Democracy in Ohio and Challenges to Freedom in the Future (forward to booklet) 113
Mantra of US Mainstream Left (article) 117
A Fraction of Democracy (article) 117
Statement on Department of Defense Spying on AFSC 120
Request to Rep. Dennis Kucinich to Introduce Legislation Renaming Department of Defense to Department of War (letter) 122
Closing Remarks at U.S. Labor Against the War (USLAW) National Conference 123
Ranting and Raking on Eminent Domain (article) 129
Keynote address at Martin Luther King Community Gathering 133
10 Democratic Reasons to Oppose Senate Bill (SB) 117 (article) 140
Electronic Voting Machines Undermine Democracy (testimony) 143
Auctioning the Magna Carta (article) 145
The U. S. Constitution: Pull the Curtain (article) 145
Reducing the Power of Juries (article) 155
The Spirit of Change (article/play script) 156
Municipalizing Democracy (article) 163
Democracy Taxed (article) 165
Local Economic Self-Determination (workshop presentation) 167
Six Ways Corporations Profit from War (article) 173
Pillars of Peace (sermon) 175
Opening Remarks at United National Action Conference – on Iraq and Afghanistan 179
Letter to Senator Sherrod Brown on BP Deepwater Horizon and IEL disasters 181
“One Nation” March Organizers Should Remember Coxey’s Army (editorial) 183
The Rigor of Research and Fundamental Monetary Change (talk) 186
Fracking issue tests citizen’ authority (letter) 192
Testimony on Ohio’ New “Plunder Law” – House Bill 193
Corporate Power: The Legacy of Santa Clara (talk) 196
Banking Political Influence (talk) 198
Lessons from Past Movements that Inform our Current Movement (talk) 202
Participation in our undemocratic democracy (article) 204
Organizing for the Right Rights (article) 204
Corporate Chameleons (article) 208
Four Problems with Billionaires Privatizing American Science (article) 209
The Wrath of Steinbeck: Corporate Personhood (article) 210
Supreme Authority: The Growing Power of the US Supreme Court and Democratic Alternatives (article) 212
Different problems. The same solution.(article) 220
Ronald McDonald is not a person (article) 223
Pope Heats Up Climate Change Debate (article) 224
Trans-Pacific Partnership would be assault on U.S. democracy (letter to editor) 225
Monetary History Calendar (intro) 226
Flint’s Water AND Democracy Crisis (article) 227
Testimony on Political Campaign Contribution Limits 228
3 lessons from organizing for justice during the RNC (editorial) 232
Trumped Up Democracy: 10 Reflections on the 2016 Elections and the Future (article) 234
Commit to seeking common ground (letter to editor) 240
This is What Democracy in Ohio Looks Like! Ohio’s Self-Determination “Infrastructure” (intro to directory) 241
Hacked Off by the Electoral College (article) 244
Democracy Convention (article) 249
With Democracy So Sick, Medicare for All Will Be Uphill Battle (editorial) 252
Winter Solstice (article) 256
Big Love Fest Mentors of Love (talk) 256
Don’t Let the Ability to Rein In Corporate Rule Slip Through Our Hands Like Water – Time to Amend the Constitution Now! (article) 258
Knowing history is key to saying no to corporate rights (article) 262
Remarks at Uniting Families Rally 265
Curing the cancer of the body politic (article) 267
Holy Toledo! (article) 270
How Wealth RULES the World (book review) 271
The Declaration of Independence, Then and Now (quiz) 272
Move to Amend poems 274
Simply reversing Citizens United will not stem the tide of corporate money polluting politics (editorial) 276
Ending the Monetary Pandemic (article) 278
Changed “Modes of Thinking” Needed to Create Real Justice and Livable World (editorial) 285
The U.S. Constitution is hopelessly outdated. It’s time to re-envision it (article) 288
Big Tech Shouldn’t Be the Arbiter of Our Free Speech Rights (editorial) 291
Thank you Darnella Frazier (article) 294
FirstEnergy should be put out of business (editorial) 295
Kent “Democracy Day” Public Hearing (testimony) 296
Holistic Solutions to Holistic Problems (talk) 298
ADDITIONAL BIOGRAPHY 307
Alliance for Just Money | June 16, 2021
By Greg Coleridge and Steven Norris
Organizing for any solution to a national problem presents multiple challenges, among them is to make the proposed solution relevant locally to people’s lives.
Bigger problems require proportionally bigger solutions, but those solutions can be difficult for individuals to relate to unless there are tangible ways presented to both understand the problem and solution and to take actions to bring change.
Educating on our destructive monetary system and proposing ways to democratize it to benefit people, places and the planet certainly falls into this category of a big problem needing a big solution. But how to localize it?
There are multiple strategies available to monetary reformers. One strategy is to study an approach of Move to Amend (MTA), a national group addressing the problems of big money corrupting elections and corporations increasingly dominating our lives by organizing to pass a Constitutional Amendment that would abolish the legal doctrines of “political money equals free speech” and corporate constitutional rights (i.e. “corporate personhood” for shorthand).
Like authentic monetary reform, ending “money as speech” and corporate rule via a Constitutional Amendment is a massive national solution. It’s a challenge to connect the proposal to local individuals and public officials. It’s also tough to find local educational and organizing “hooks” to get people to not only think and talk about it, but to take meaningful action.
Local ballot initiatives
MTA organizers in Ohio came up with the idea of organizing legal initiative petition campaigns to place on local ballots. Voters were asked whether they support Congress passing the proposed Amendment affirming that corporations do not have constitutional rights and money is not free speech, in the spirit of the national MTA We the People Amendment.
Anyone who’s ever been involved in local initiative petition campaigns knows that they are terrific ways to educate, organize and develop local leadership. Gathering signatures involved training petitioners, who were grounded in talking points and in how to approach individuals. Soliciting signatures educated potential voters. Once the campaigns were successful in gaining ballot access, the campaign flips to educate the entire community to vote in favor of the initiative — which, in many cases, gained media attention and invitations to speak at voter education forums.
While people-driven initiative campaigns at the local level on all kinds of issues are common, an additional feature of the Move to Amend initiatives was very unique in the 12 Ohio communities where the initiatives were enacted and became law.
That feature was the legal mandate that the local government (i.e. city or village) sponsor, publicize and have representatives at an annual or biennial public hearing where residents and, in some instances, others could testify on the impact of money in politics and corporate rule on their lives, community, state, nation or world. While details varied on several features, all 12 communities have been holding these public hearings — some since 2012.
The public hearings have been significant in keeping the problems of money in elections and corporate rule, as well as the We the People Amendment, alive beyond the original local ballot campaign in several ways:
First, the public hearings provide an opportunity for local MTA organizers to recruit representatives from other groups working on solutions to problems that are thwarted by money spent in elections by special interests and corporate constitutional rights. This helps those representatives, whether physically in person or virtually together at the hearing, see the connections between their concerns and the need to pass the We the People Amendment.
Second, the public hearings are a means to continually educate local MTA supporters and expose the larger community to both the problems and the solution promoted by MTA. The exposure is all the more effective if the hearings are publicized in the media beforehand and/or reported on afterwards.
Third, the hearings are a chance to directly educate local public officials who attend the hearings, who are both testified to and invited to testify themselves. After all, the public policy influence of money in elections and the preemption of local laws by corporate entities legislatively and in the courts are increasing realities to local elected officials. Besides, it’s a fact that some local public officials become state officials and some of those state officials become our U.S. Senators and Representatives — building a relationship with them now increases the chances they’ll become champions to our cause later.
One more provision of the dozen MTA-driven ballot initiatives is worth noting. Following each public hearing, the municipality is required to summarize the testimony, send it to the appropriate federal and state elected officials and remind them that voters in their communities want the We the People Amendment to be passed. Sometimes, the summary is coupled with written copies of all the testimony presented. When the municipality hasn’t included the written testimony, local MTA organizers have sent it themselves to the relevant public officials.
At a recent Cleveland Move to Amend public hearing, AFJM members John Howell, Steve Norris and Greg Coleridge (who’s also National Outreach Director for Move to Amend) spoke. You can view the public hearing held on Zoom this year here with the AFJM members speaking at 12:01, 50:41 and 62:59 respectively.
This is certainly not the only strategy to make a national call for monetary reform locally relevant. But it is one way to educate the community and public officials, outreach to local groups, develop local leadership grounded in the issue, recruit new supporters and attract media attention. Oh, and by the way, it also sends a recurring message to elected officials that the people of the community en masse support authentic fundamental change.
Connecting monetary reform to corporate constitutional rights
There’s a vicious symbiotic relationship between current laws on monetary policies and money in politics and corporate power. Economic power almost always translates into political power.
Monetary policies that continue to enrich banking corporations that perpetually profit from the creation of money as debt and through subsidies and, when needed, bailouts, allow these financial entities to flex their political muscle through political campaign contributions (i.e. what some call “legalized bribery”).
Senator Dick Durbin stated in a moment of candor in 2009: “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.” The Finance, Insurance and Real Estate (FIRE) remains “far and away the largest source of campaign contributions to federal candidates and parties”. This condition is a reflection of corporations both hijacking First Amendment “free speech” rights, which were intended exclusively for human beings, and the constitutional doctrine that “political money is free speech,” instead of what money actually is — property.
The power of the financial industry is also a function in what they can shield — namely their internal financial affairs — from public scrutiny. Like many business corporations, their defense from being transparent hinges on the corporate hijacking of Fourth Amendment Constitutional privacy rights, which again were rights originally intended solely for human beings. This has emboldened in the case of banking entities to claim without independent verification the need for greater financial subsidies and other support lest these increasingly “too big to fail” institutions, in fact, fail and risk pulling the entire economy into an abyss. Yet another instance of their increased power to influence public policies.
It should be noted that original public charters creating banks in many states mandated that the bank’s books be open to periodic public inspection. This ensured that banking corporations remained publicly accountable and subordinate in power to the public.
These current realities have created an outsized economic and political influence of financial corporations. In such a legal and political environment in which the fundamental constitutional ground rules are rigged to benefit the very rich and business corporations, there’s little chance of passage of monetary reform or, frankly, any solution that addresses fundamental change and/or reduces corporate power.
It also, quite frankly, makes it enormously difficult to pass the We the People Amendment. That’s why it’s essential that AFJM continues to work on passing one or more laws creating authentic monetary change and other organizations working on their respective agendas to change laws or regulations creating more justice in all their forms. Yet, it’s critical to understand the limitation of working exclusively to improve any condition legally if constitutionally the rules are stacked against us, rules that can and have time and again preempted democratically passed laws benefiting workers, consumers, the environment and the natural world.
It’s why AFJM and other groups need to devote some energy to changing the constitutional ground rules — to create a level political playing field where We the People can actually mean all the people working to pass authentic monetary change and create other laws and regulations to the benefit of all people and all living things.
by Greg Coleridge
The institutions that create and distribute money in our nation and throughout much of the world are diseased due to coney creation and distribution being privatized/corporatized. A democratic money system, which is fundamental system change, is one important piece to addressing our fundamental economic crisis.
Seems like an appropriate time to recycle this, which is disturbingly still damn appropriate. Contact your Rep and Senators and ask them to show some leadership and have some vision by proposing a fundamental solution (an updated NEED Act) to the fundamental problem (an imminent pandemic depression) we’re facing.
An Open Letter to the Dean of SBE and all Economics Professors at Maastricht University (UM)
Young people are increasingly stepping up to demand systemic change on many fronts — not just ecological but economic.
Here, it’s economic students blowing a hole into arguably THE greatest financial myth of all time — that banking corporations only lend money that they have. Total and complete BS. They create it out of thin air as debt. Why does this matter? When you add the fact that most money creation in our society originates from financial institutions as debt and that corporate money creation is THE greatest example of corporatization/ privatization in our society (a mammoth corporate coup since Art 1, Sec 8 of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress the power to coin money), what we have is a political and financial system controlled by financial corporations.
We’re all in debt to financial corporations — individuals, governments, even non-financial corporations. That means we’re all serfs to financial institutions. Even if you personally have no debt, a portion of everything you buy is priced to account for the debt of the producer.
Democratizing our money system goes hand-in-hand with democratizing our political system and Constitution. Good luck trying to having a real political democracy when banking corporations can create money out of nothing and convert their financial power into political power. The FIRE (Finance, Insurance, Real Estate) industry remains #1 in legalized bribery (political donations) and right up there in lobbying. It’s been this way (sometimes dropping all the way down to #2) for a long time.
It’s also is directly connected to saving the planet. How? Under the current debt-based corporate money system, the only way to collectively to pay off debt (not just the principle, but interest — which wasn’t created by financial corporations) is to race and compete with one another in a system where there isn’t enough money to pay off our loans. We must race as fast as possible to earn as much as we can in competition with others, which for many in our economy means working at jobs which convert natural resources into stuff that can be sold/consumed as quickly as possible, which of course results in massive amounts of ecological “externalities” (trash, garbage, pollution). We absolutely MUST plunder the planet to collectively pay off our debts. Of course, it’s in the end a losing proposition for the losers of this race. The result — like addicts, more debt to pay off past debt (which of course means more interest payments due which weren’t created). It’s why we have cyclical financial bubbles and bursts of those bubbles when people/governments/non-financial corporations see more of their debt payments going to pay just the interest.
We’re now in the midst of the mother of all bubbles (what some call “the everything bubble” — the bursting of which in the next year or two will be devastating.
The alternative is publicly-created debt-free and inflation-free money. WE decide how much is created and where it should be spent, not financial corporations. Human and physical infrastructure is the priority. It’s how to fund any real Green New Deal. It’s what the NEED Act of a few years ago was all about.
Of course, we don’t have the people power to force the end of the banking coup of money creation. That must be the first step. And that’s where the #WethePeopleAmendment sponsored by #MovetoAmendcomes in. We have to take charge of our political system.
It won’t be easy.
The Second National Bank of the U.S. threatened to cause a financial depression (by calling in all their loans) when their corporate charter was not going to be renewed in the 1830’s. Cleveland’s banks threatened default of the city (and followed through) when then Mayor Dennis Kucinich refused to sell the city’s public electrical utility to CEI, the private electric utility (tied to the banks). By the way, Kucinich was the main sponsor of the NEED Act when in Congress. He gets it. We must too.
Financial corporations have the most to lose to democratize our political and monetary systems. They will both push (lobbying and political investments/contributions) and pull (call in loans) as means to disrupt, demean and distract.
What choice to we have?
Sponsored by A Grand Alliance to Save our Public Postal Service
June 28, 2016 / East Mt. Zion Baptist Church, Cleveland
The phrase “populism” has been getting much attention these days.
Omaha Platform – Launching of the Populist Party (July 4, 1892) – 124 years this week:
From Finance Section, point 5: “We demand that postal savings banks be established by the government for the safe deposit of the earnings of the people and to facilitate exchange.”
Education and organizing led to opening of the US Postal Savings System on 1/1/1911
Offered savings accounts to depositors, but no loans. When banks failed after the Great Depression, many people shifted their remaining funds. With post officers serving as bank branches, the Postal Savings System held upwards of 20% of the nation’s savings in the mid 1940’s.
Continued until 49 years ago this week: July 1, 1967
Post offices can and should provide minimal financial services – i.e. check cashing, ATMs, bill paying, electronic funds transfers and other basic financial services to communities that are underserved by the private sector similar to what the government has done in the past when the private sector has not provided other basic services – like electricity (i.e. the creation of rural electrification). When the private/corporate sector cherry picks or ignores geographic areas or specific communities, it’s the duty of the public sector to fill the gap.
It all seems so reasonable. So modest. So elementary. So sensible. So basic.
So why don’t we have it?
Part of it in an unawareness of what was. The obliteration of our cultural memory / corporatized culture (education, entertainment, news, activism). Just like the efforts of the cooperative movement in general. Farmers coops. Silos.
Other part is pure power politics
Commercial/corporate banks lobbied against their expansion and for their elimination — which occurred in 1967. Postal banks represent a threat. Just like credit unions.
Campaign contributions (or investments) from the Finance, Insurance & Real Estate (FIRE) sector
2000 – $321 mil
2004 – $355 mil
2008 – $518 mil
2012 – $688 mil
2016 – $560 mil (and counting)
Generally they are #1 among all sectors
Subset of FIRE sector are payday lenders
2000 — $300K
2004 – $1.8 mil
2008 – $1.8 mil
2012 – $4 mil
2016 – $1.1 mil (and counting)
2014 – 498 mil (2nd only to misc business)
2015 – slightly less – 485 mil
So we must educate.
But we must also organize. Organized people to counter organized money and corporate power. The ultimate solution is to pass a constitutional amendment to abolish political money as free speech and corporate constitutional rights.
Question is will it be enough?
This Grand Alliance to Save our Public Postal Service is embarking on a Grand Experiment – to see whether conventional education and organizing on an incredibly reasonable, modest and sensible proposal can be enacted
If not, then it will be clear that political reform is not possible. Needed instead will to transform the political system – toward one that is more inclusive, just and democratic.
1009 BC – BIRTH OF KING SOLOMON, SON OF DAVID
The rich rules over The poor, and The borrower is The slave of The lender. Proverbs (of Solomon) 7:22
1836 – STATEMENT BY JOHN C. CALHOUN, FORMER US VICE-PRESIDENT
“A power has risen up in the government greater than the people themselves, consisting of many and various powerful interests, combined in one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in banks.”
1836 – DEATH OF JAMES MADISON, 4TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
Madison signed into law a bank bill in 1816 creating the Second National Bank of the United States. Chartered for 20 years, the bank amassed economic power, which led to the successful efforts of President Andrew Jackson to abolish it in 1836.
1795 – DEATH OF JOHN JAY, FIRST CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE US SUPREME COURT
“Those who own the country ought to govern it.”
1858 – DEATH OF EDWARD KELLOGG, BUSINESSMAN AND ECONOMIST. HIS IDEAS INFLUENCED THE POLICIES OF THE POPULIST AND GREENBACK PARTIES
“Legal value belongs to anything which represents actual value, or capital. Its existence depends upon actual value. The worth of things of legal value depends upon their capability to be exchanged for things of actual value. Since money is our monetary system is created as debt, the ‘legal value’ of money includes both the principal debt and interest — which exceeds the ‘actual value’ of a nation’s real wealth or claims on collateral at any point in time. The only means to close this gap and cover interest payments is to create additional collateral (goods and services) via economic growth. Of course, this additional debt-based money used to pay the previous interest has its own interest. Thus the downward debt cycle never ends until it collapses.
1812 – FIRST US TREASURY NOTES AUTHORIZED BY THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS
Treasury notes are promise to pay notes to borrowers to raise revenue. The US needed funds to fund the War of 1812. Rather than print US money (such as “Continentals” – an interest- and debt-free money issued by the Continental Congress to pay for the Revolutionary War), the US government followed a different course – to issue notes to borrowers with promises to pay the principal with interest at a later date. The original interest rate was 5.4%. Wars cause indebtedness. Bankers tend to like wars since they tend to create financial dependency of nations to bankers. Thomas Edison would later say about Treasury bonds, “If our nation can issue a dollar bond, it can issue a dollar bill. The element that makes the bond good makes the bill good…”
1997 – PUBLICATION OF ARTICLE “BEYOND GREED AND SCARCITY” BY BERNARD LIETAER IN YES MAGAZINE
“While economic textbooks claim that people and corporations are competing for markets and resources, I claim that in reality they are competing for money – using markets and resources to do so. Greed and fear of scarcity are being continuously created and amplified as a direct result of the kind of money we are using. For example, we can produce more than enough food to feed everybody, and there is definitely enough work for everybody in the world, but there is clearly not enough money to pay for it all. In fact, the job of central banks is to create and maintain that currency scarcity.”
2005 – PUBLICATION OF “A MATTER OF INTEREST” BY WILLIAM HIXSON, CANADIAN ECONOMIST
“The very idea of a government that can create money for itself, allowing banks to create money that the government then borrows, and pays interest on, is so preposterous that it staggers the imagination. Either everyone in government in charge of the procedure is lacking in intelligence or they have been bought and paid for by those who profit from their skullduggery and their infidelity to the public interest.”
JUNE (not certain of exact date)
1992- UPDATED PUBLICATION OF MODERN MONEY MECHANICS BY THE FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF CHICAGO
“The actual process of money creation takes place in commercial banks. Banks can build up deposits by increasing loans and investments…This unique attribute of the banking business was discovered several centuries ago…At one time, bankers were merely middlemen. They made a profit by accepting gold and coins for safekeeping and lending them to borrowers. But they soon found that the receipts (bank notes or IOUs) they issued were being used as if they were a means of payment. These receipts were acceptable as if they were money since whoever held them could go to the banker and exchange them for metallic money…Then bankers discovered…that they could make loans merely by giving borrowers their promises to pay (bank notes). In this way banks began to create money…More notes (IOUs) could be issued than the gold and coin on hand, because only a portion of the notes outstanding would be presented for payment at any one time…Demand deposits (checks) are the modern counterpart of bank notes. It was a small step from printing notes to making book entries to the credit of borrowers, which the borrowers in turn, could ‘spend’ by writing checks.”
1818 – SECOND NATIONAL BANK OF US TRIGGERS RECESSION/DEPRESSION
The Second National Bank of the United States (a private financial institution) on this day reversed its financial course from monetary expansion to contraction. They called in loans and cut future loans. They required payments from state banks in gold alone. This caused deflation, leading to a two-year recession/depression – called the “Panic of 1819.” This is what happens time and again when private financial corporations control a nation’s money system instead of We the People through their government.
1944 – BRETTON WOODS CONFERENCE BEGINS
The United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference, known as the Bretton Woods Conference was a meeting of 44 Allied nations in New Hampshire, where the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank were created. Participant nations agreed to fix their currencies to a set value of gold. Debtor nations were to be helped with payments. The actual program was the use of loans (to be paid back with interest) to create political and economic dependence to loaning countries and their bankers. Agreements to receive further loans were often conditioned on “Structural Adjustment Programs” which called for privatization/corporatization of public services, wage cuts and perversion of economies to service debt payments.
1967 – US POSTAL SAVING SYSTEM ENDS
Opposition from commercial banks prevented the postal savings system from fully developing. The United States Postal Savings System was a postal savings system operated by the United States Postal Service from January 1, 1911 until July 1, 1967
1983 – DEATH OF BUCKMINSTER FULLER, US ARCHITECT, SYSTEMS THEORIST, AUTHOR, DESIGNER, INVENTOR AND FUTURIST
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
This is what proponents of a democratic monetary system are doing – calling for the creation of US money (rather than borrowing from banks) to rebuild our national infrastructure, democratizing the Federal Reserve system, eliminating “fractional reserve banking” (which allows banks to loan out more than their deposits) and other provisions.
1787 – LETTER TO JAMES MADISON FROM GOUVENEUR MORRIS, ONE OF THE PRIMARY ARCHITECTS OF THE US CONSTITUTION
In describing the motives of the owners of the new Bank of North America, Morris stated,
“The rich will strive to establish their dominion and enslave the rest. They always did. They always will…They will have the same effect here as elsewhere, if we do not, by [the power of] government, keep them in their proper spheres.”
1881 – PRESIDENT JAMES A. GARFIELD SHOT. HE DIED 10 WEEKS LATER
“Whosoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce, and when you realize that the entire system is very easily controlled, one way or another, by a few powerful men at the top, you will not have to be told how periods of inflation and depression originate.”
1890 – SHERMAN ANTITRUST ACT BECOMES LAW
The Sherman Act was an attempt to prevent unlawful restraint of trade and commerce and prevent monopolies – including banking monopolies. The Act was more aggressively enforced under President Teddy Roosevelt, including against the corporate practices of JP Morgan, the most powerful banker, if not corporate titan, of the day. In response to this increased enforcement of the Sherman Act and the Hepburn Act, Morgan created a financial panic by having his banks and those he controlled call in loans and refuse to grant new ones. The economic crash of 1907 followed. The “Panic of 1907” was a direct cause for the creation of the Federal Reserve System several years later.
1961 – DEATH OF EARNEST HEMMINGWAY, AUTHOR
“How did you go bankrupt?”
“Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”
From The Sun Also Rises
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 email@example.com
Audio of AFSC Monthly Conference Call Conversation
Speaker: Joe Bongiovanni — Co-Director of the Kettle Pond Institute, second generation monetary reformer, annual speaker at the American Monetary Institute national conference.
Joe discussed the topics of money and how it’s created by banking corporations, how monetary policy connects to the economy and our lives, and why it’s important to become monetarily literate, He talks and answers questions about the National Emergency Employment Defense (NEED) Act, which if enacted would infuse debt-free money into our economy to meet our basic physical and human needs, create jobs and reduce our national debt.