Originally Published in the Reverse Engineering Group on January 25, 2012
With Da Fed being the most popular Punching Bag these days for all our monetary problems, its often postulated that if we simply eliminate it, all these problems would be eliminated. Nothing could be further from the truth of course. Under most scenarios you can think of, things will get quite a bit worse. Of course, they are going to get worse anyhow and Da Fed is an instrument of great Evil, so it must be done away with, but people do need to realize this won’t reap much in the way of short term benefits.
What Da Fed does, and in fact all CBs do is provide coordination and Central Planning in a large economic system utilizing Money. Any Bank can go ahead and print Bank Notes and get a money based economy going anywhere based on the Assets that bank holds in its “Reserve”. Those assets could be anything from Gold to Land to Manufacturing Plants to Oil, doesn’t matter what as long as those assets hold some perceived value in the economy. There must of course be a SURPLUS in the econmy of the most basic goods first though, because in the absence of such a surplus nothing else holds any value. IOW, once Food is in short supply, all the Gold in your basement safe won’t buy it.
In many prior posts I have gone over the principles of how money itself evolves, so its a good time here to look a bit further into how Central Banking evolved, and why it became particularly powerful in the Industrial Era.
Everyplace in everytime hasn’t always had a whole bunch of Precious Metals around to Coin Up and use for Money. The spot might have been plentiful in many other resources, well into Surplus of the basics, but little in the way of PMs around. You could take Africa as an example where Cowrie Shells were used for Money for quite some time, but a better example for our puposes is North America in the early days of Colonization.
England, France, Portugal and Spain themselves never seemed to have enough Gold around in those years, since they were always busy with wars against each other going back to the collapse of the Roman Empire. The coinage they did have was always necessary to pay soldiers, who generally would take no other form of Money since it didn’t generally hold value too well in a Wartime scenario. Besides the soldiers, there was the necessity of purchasing all the Consumables of a War, Guns, Ammo, Horses, Food for the Soldiers etc. Again, during a time of War, the folks in control of these resources would only part with them for payment in specie, not Sovereign Promises which would go bad if the side you provided the stuff to lost the war. Of course, “Democracy” eventually changed this dynamic some, which I will explain as we go along here.
So anyhow, the Colonial powers tended to hoard any PMs they got hold of, and rather than pay for raw materials in specie to their dependent colonies, they basically just got Credits on the Balance Sheet of the East India Company. e.g., if you delivered a certain amount of Lumber for instance to the docks, you had Credit with which to buy more Crosscut Saws and so forth coming back the other way, thus expanding your Lumber Bizness. However, no Gold is showing up in your economy this way to use to pay the Lumberjacks, so what do you do here? Answer, the Lumber Company starts printing its own notes, which you then can use to buy your own Crosscut Saw in the Company Store, along with other nicely produced Goods from Europe also, like Cloth produced on Industrial Looms.
In fact any Gold or Silver that does turn up circulating in the economy gets sucked OUT of the economy because the King over In Europe will only accept as Tax Payment what you manage to squeeze out here from immigrants who arrived with a few Pieces of Eight or Louis D’Ors in their pockets.
Recent immigrants to the FSofA not being quite the money DOPES people are today realized they could set up their own Banking houses and systems, get some internal trade going and pretty much avoid Taxation by the King on this. So laws are passed as to what is allowed to be used as Legal Tender which makes local trade even more difficult, and Colonists and Pigmen alike are very unhappy with the situation. Eventually they Revolt and start up a New Country, mainly so they can control their own commerce, not get taxed to beat the band and yes, create their own Money also.
The Founding Fathers, the Aristocracy of the New country are well aware of Monetary issues, so they make some laws on Coinage rules and invest in CONgress the power to coin money, but this doesn’t stope Banksters from creating Notes and there still is a remarkable dearth of available PMs to coin up here during this period In fact I am pretty sure at the end of the Revolutionary War the new Nation started out in debt to the French and probably Kraut banksters as well.
So now in the early days of the FSofA you have a very chaotic system of different Banksters creating Notes for local commerce, a few PMs floating around, and very POWERFUL Banking interests from the Old Country who want to gain hegemony over the system. They eventually get Alexander Hamilton to set up the First Bank of the US, which in due course Fails of course screwing numerous people. More chaos ensues. Then the Second Bank of the FSofA gets chartered and things go OK until the late 1840s or so, when there are yet more Banking problems going on over in Europe. Andy Jackson “kills” the 2nd Bank of the FSofA, and now we move into the “Free Banking” period which lasts all the way up until Da Fed is chartered in 1913.
Now, while Pollyanna Free Market Economic History buffs look at this period as one of great Growth and Freedom, what it really allowed for was a massive grab of resources by the most powerful Banking Houses over in Europe, and besides that was a fundamental cause of the Civil War. During the period, the big FSofA Banking interests consolidated under the Robber Barons, Rockefeller, Carnegie, Morgan and Mellon. These folks got mega-rich on the backs of Chinese and Irish they imported over here to build the Railroads, who while they were better off than they were in their home countries in those years were certainly not living high on the hog here.
The period also is one in which Crime flourished throughout the land, it was the heyday of the Gunslingers of the Old West of course. These folks though were petty thieves compared to the thievery the US Calvary was engaged in as it cleared the land of Natives and Colonists alike to get rights of way for the Railroads and gain the Mineral Rights for Oil and Coal containing land.
For J6P of those years, if he was fortunate out living in a Little House on the Prairie and not in the direct path of the Railroad or sitting on top of an Oil field, he probably did OK most of the time without much money living close to a subsitence lifestyle. The various Financial Panics through the years probably didn’t affect him all that much, although there were certainly “Hard Times”, where more than the average number of boys left the Farm and took up Gunslinging and Bank Robbery as a means of making a living. Jed Clampett not withstanding, anytime some Rube did happen to be living on top of an Oil Field, he was quickly snookered out of it and if he didn’t sell out his mineral rights to Standard Oil he bought instead a Ticket to the Great Beyond.
So now you have this Great Nation of the FSofA in the post Civil War years, the Railroads expanding their tentacles across the once pristine landscape and Factory towns popping up like Buboes across the Northeast and around the Great Lakes. Is there any “National Money” really floating around here though? Not really, the Railroads are all paying the Chinese and Irish in their own Scrip and so are all the Factory Towns. Lincoln did issue “Greenbacks” and there are “Dollars” floating around in the larger economies, but even besides the systemic financial Panics of the period you get many individual bank and company failures along the way also. The number of times J6P working in some Factory town got hosed when the Factory closed up and he was left holding a bunch of worthless Company Scrip to buy goods at the now Outta Biz commpany store is incalculable.
So in this New World where J6P is dependent on Jobs in Industry, he WANTS a Single Currency good anywhere in the Nation which he can Save if he is a penurious and industrious sort of fellow, which when his Job in the Company Store goes south he can still use to buy stuff at some other store in some other town, where hopefully he can find a new job also paying this Dependable Currency of the Dollar.
Into this vaccuum in 1913 step our friends the Rockefellers, Rothschilds, Morgans and Mellons to establish Da Fed after secret meetings on Jekyll Island. The agreement amongst them is to Charter a new Central Bank which will issue the Currency they ALL will use in their Company Stores, and which Da Goobermint will have to Borrow from THEM if it wants to buy anything. Since they now Own most of what is worth owning by this time and all other New Biznesses are much smaller than they are, these new biznesses ALSO must use this money rather than issuing their own Company Scrip. So, even if not directly Owned by JP Morgan, Mom & Pop Biz is indirectly owned by him because in order to use this Money, they are paying a 3% Tax on it all the time. This is done on an aggregate level to keep the system rolling and is partially recycled back into Da Goobermint, but even just 1% of the entire Production of the country is constantly being fed into the hands of the few people who hold the stock and control over Da Federal Reserve, the Central Bank in control of the creation of Currency. How much they will create at any given time and how it gets lent out all passes through the Primary Dealers, who then determine how much will be Invested into various types of Stocks and Bonds being issued out. So the economy is essentially Centrally Planned by the owners of these Banks and Corporations, and they build out the economy for their own greatest benefit. Tha greatest benefit comes in the Monopolization of core Industries producing, well, EVERYTHING. Food production especially becomes consolidated to the point where it almost becomes impossible to grow your own food these days.
Now, why, oh why did CONgress and Treasury not simply continue the printing of Greenbacks and keep Money Production “In House” as the province of the Public, as opposed to a few powerful Banking Houses? There are numerous reasons for this, though the biggest one is simply general Ignorance of how money works by people who are Elected out of the general population, and the ones who are not Ignorant are already Corrupt and easily bought by Monied interests.
The composition of the House and Senate in 1913 was little different than it is today, you have some Populist types elected from the Hoi Polloi who are usually Rubes, and then some (and more all the time of course) Rich folks who buy their way into office. You know, Michale Bloomberg, Mitt Romney et al. The Rubes are replaceable Idiots, and they gotta raise money to get reelected and not get Assassinated on the pages of the Corporate Owned Newspaper, and the Monied interests are interested in making sure they stay RICH. So in 1913, when the crew from Jekyll Island presents this “Federal Reserve” Plan, its pretty easy to get all the Votes necessary in CONgress to approve it, and POOF, here in the FSofA Central Banking is BORN AGAIN, with yes of course the very same folks running this system as were running it over in Europe going back to time immemorial here. Postulate among more than a few people here being that those folks are actually the Elders of Zion, running the whole system since it began even predating the Roman Empire and predating Babylon also. In the broadest sense this just about has to be true, what isn’t real clear is how well particular family lines held up through so many millenia, but the overall banking system can be connected up quite well going back through the Medici and the Catholic Church, then predating that through Roman Banking connections to Egypt and then from there predating in Egypts Banking connecitons to Persia and the Mesopotamian Empire.
The insufficient supply of PMs I mentioned early on here was resolved through the combination of the Bond Market and Parliamentary “Democracy”. While in the Early days Merchants would only take from a King his Gold in payment for the various goods and services he needed to Make War, the invention of a Democracy made Debts which a Nation State took on to make War last indefinitely long. If a King took on a debt, when the King dies, the debt dies with him. When a Nation through its “Representative Goobermint” takes on a Debt, it lasts essentially forever, unless and until the entire Goobermint comes crashing down in a Revolution, and even then once a New Goobermint is established, in order to get back into the Good Graces of the Money Lenders, in the Name of the People the New Goobermint has to accept at least part of the responsibility to pay back old debts incurred by the last Goobermint. With the establishment of such “Popular Goobermints”, Bonds became BETTER than Gold, and so in the years since the Bond Market of Sovereign Debt has been the big driver for Money Creation. If Sovereigns created Debt FREE money and directly issued Currency, there would BE no Bond Market, and no way for private Merchants to sieve money from the population. So it never evolved that way, anytime it started it got squashed out by those running an already functioning monetary system.
This leads us finally to today, where after lo all these many years the Chickens come Home to Roost, and the Sovereign Bond Market is in catastrophic failure mode. Debt has been heaped on Debt, Pyramided and Rehypothecated up many times over here. “Good as Gold” (better actually) Sovereign Debt is used as Collateral to borrow against not once, but many times over on the asumption of course all the bad bets won’t go bad at the same time, forcing Margin Calls from all corners. Soon as any one of these goes bad though, all the people owning rehypothecated debt get nervous and call in their loans. So, if you used Greek Sovereign “good as gold” Bonds upon which to borrow money several times over to buy a variety of other assets, soon as the Greek Bonds go bad, every Lender who loaned you some money based on those Greek Bonds sends in the Repo Man.
It would be bad enough if it was JUST the Greek Sovereign Bonds here, but the fact is of course it is ALL of them. Pretty much every Sovereign State on earth INCLUDING the Chinese and Germans has borrowed against the future, based on the idea of Perpetual Growth of their economies, which as we know cannot possibly happen in a world of finite resources. Besides that, all the Debt even if not denominated in the Dominant Fiat denomination of Dollars is integrally connected through the Bond Market, so when that collapses all the Fiat does also of whatever denomination no matter who is printing it.
There is sufficient separation here between economies that Euros, Yen, Dollars, Francs etc can all be printed at various different rates which produces varying rates of inflation and deflation in these economies, but its really impossible for anyone of them to truly “Monetize the Debt”. The Debt is actually many times the amount of currency in existence resultant from fractional banking and rehypothecation. Helicopter Ben can print a $1T or two a year maybe, but actual dollar Denominated Debt floating around out there is in the $100s of Ts and maybe Quadrillions. Try to make good on that through monetization, the world is swimming in Dollar Bills a mile thick covering the entire globe right up to Alaska. OK, I’m guessing here, but its a lot of paper anyhow.LOL. So, we come right back around to the reality that most of this debt is irredeemable and simply will be flushed down the toilet, but that debt represents MOST of the Wealth of the top .01% of the World. Allow the Greeks to declare BK and wash their debt, the Irish will want that too. So will the Italians. So the Bond Holders don’t want to wash ANYBODY’s debt out here. They will have to of course, because that which cannot be paid will not be, but they keep stringing it out here pressing austerity down and squeezing out every last drop possible, and the populations mostly accept it because economic Collapse and total failure of the monetary system is WORSE than austerity. At least until the austerity is SOOO tight you just can’t live anymore anyhow and and its worse than Death to keep trying to live under it. When more than a certain percentage of the population reaches that point, then you get your Revolutions. I’ll ballpark that at around 25%, but that is not a 25% figure of Unemployment. Its a 25% figure of people with ZERO resources who can’t even get Bennies like transfer payments and SNAP Cards. We are still well under that here in the FSofA of course.
Nevertheless, as the Cascade proceeds along here, as first the Greeks go Down and then the Italians, the collapsing debt will reverberate through the Banking system, eventually collapsing all the Fiat, as the Bond Market becomes irretrievably broken. At this point, Money on the International level ceases to function. this wil be very disruptive obviously to political stability everywhere, and substituting Gold just won’t work well or for too long even if tried. As I see it, the only thing which might briefly work in stages is doing some Credit Money creation a la Ellen Brown, but this only possibly works to salvage some commerce for a while locally if people still accept this money. In order to meet the needs of so many people, Da Goobermint would have the tendency to issue far too much of it and it would hyperinflate. It also would have only one real source of distribution, that would be from Da Goobermint. So all Jobs would be Goobermint Jobs. Essentially, its the Soviet Model and it just has tons of problems associated with it, the most apparent of which is a high level of corruption. Let’s face it, if you turned CONgress into the Politburo and gave them the monopoly over issuing money and dishing it out, they would just be the same type of Power Brokers that the TBTF Banks are now. However, as was the case with the Soviets, it could stave off a total Mad Max outcome for a while if undertaken with some degree of success, and would seem to be a likely outcome in the near term.
The greater problem than Goobermint stepping in here to retake Money Creation from the hands of the Illuminati is that the collapse will make apparent the real lack of resources necessary to support 7B people on the planet. Not that such resources don’t currently exist in aggregate, they still do. Problem is the new money created won’t function Cross Border in international trade. Disparate Credit Money issued by varying goobermints is like Scrip issued by different Companies, it doesn’t buy anything at another company store unless there is agreed on valuations for the notes. When the Dollar collapses, all these agreed on valuations go out the window here, and it would be very chaotic, to say the least.
Still, it holds the system together a while longer if it gets implemented successfully in some locales by some Goobermints. The issue here is though that the international trade in Oil and food would be so disrupted by this that many areas that are not self sufficient would suffer extreme deprivation, aka a good portion of the population would Starve to Death. This has blowback in terms of conflict at the borders of all these places, as people on one side of a border currently starving attempt to get to the other side where people are not doing too great, but not yet starving. So you get lots of local cross border wars, along with internal Mad Max issues.
So, as you can see here, bad as the Central Banking paradigm is, once it collapses you get many more and worse problems which people seek to avoid here. Can’t be avoided forever, but nobody wants it to be TODAY, in My Little Town. The fact it will inevitably end up with so many people off the cliff and such a major population reduction makes it impossible to say what will come after this in the end. It could be enslavement of the remaining population by a few; it could be a balkanization with many smaller self sustaining populations on an Ag level, it could be a vast reduction to Primitivism in the Hunter-Gatherer paradigm, or it could be an Extinction Level Event. We won’t know the answer to this in our lifetimes, though we may see the beginnings of it to have a better idea of which way it will go here. What is definitely true though is that when the Central bank model fails and the Dollar goes the way of the Dinosaur, the changes will begin in earnest. Root for the End of Da Fed if you wish to, I certainly do. Realize however that the end of Da Fed is no solution to our problems, but rather will only bring to the surface many deeper ones embedded in the monetary sytem.
The End of Da Fed is not the End of our problems. It is not even the Beginning of the End. It is just the End of the Beginning.