May 2009 Articles

Could Obama Ban Gold?

Could President Obama ban U.S citizens from holding gold?
Back in 1933, at a time of economic crisis, President Roosevelt forced U.S. Citizens to sell their gold at $20 an ounce – and then subsequently revalued the metal to $35. Could President Obama, a Roosevelt disciple, have similar plans in mind?

Author: Lawrence Williams
Posted: Wednesday , 20 May 2009
LONDON

Whether one believes in the GATA premise that the gold price is being held down by a gigantic conspiracy between the World’s Central Banks, Governments and some major banking institutions or not, there is little doubt that governmental-initiated currency manipulation does occur, and if one looks at gold as money then it is logical that some degree of manipulation here also takes place at Central Bank level. Whether one can call this a global conspiracy, or part of the general process of stabilising currencies and exchange rates, depends perhaps on which side of the fence you are sitting. In a way this is similar to the terrorist/freedom fighter debate!
But, history does tell us that the US government, in the days of a fixed gold price, did intervene in a very direct manner with President F.D. Roosevelt banning the “hoarding of gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates” and thus forcing US citizens to sell to Federal Reserve at $20 an ounce. Subsequently the Fed raised the price of gold to $35 an ounce.

President Obama is known to be a Roosevelt disciple and he must be well aware of what was done at the time, given the parallels of the U.S economy between the present time and the 1930s. There must be a temptation to try the same tactic, and then raise the gold price dramatically in a move which would certainly support reserves within those nations which still have major gold holdings.

Indeed, if monetary authorities worldwide sees the gold price really start to take off, this kind of process has to become even more of a temptation as a big global move into gold could exacerbate the global financial crisis in that it would show that people no longer have faith in the economic status quo (it can be argued that already they don’t) and the the current crisis of confidence could be severely worsened by such a rush.
In an article published late last year, Mark Mahaffey of Hinde Capital, argued that such a possibility existed and pointed out that “the fear for anyone who is in credit is that the financial system could become geared towards negating debt which, in turn, would destroy the value of their assets. One way of bypassing this threat is to buy gold. However a general shift to gold would undermine the power of central banks and their influence on the economy.”

Of course the monetary situation nowadays is completely different and the banning of gold holdings, and subsequent revaluation would be much harder to accomplish domestically – and even more so globally. Back in 1933 the dollar was on the gold standard which meant that, in theory at least, each dollar could be exchanged for the same value in gold. Nowadays all currencies are effectively fiat money with no solid backing (except perhaps of a fiat dollar), and to revert to a gold standard would require an upward revaluation of the gold price beyond belief.

But, there is a precedent out there and while we think the idea is unlikely, it might appeal to someone who is prepared to try radical means to stabilise the economy if all other measures fail. And – consider this thought – are shortages of gold coins from national mints due to a total underestimation of demand, or part of government policies to control gold flows into private hands. We think the former, but the conspiracy theorists no doubt have other views.

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Are we there yet?

Predicting a Revolutionary Future

by Lane Wallace

Time magazine’s cover story this week is a predictive look at how “the way Americans work” is going to change over the next 10 years. “Throw away the briefcase: you’re not going to the office,” it proclaims. “There’s no longer a ladder, and you may never get to retire, but there’s a world of opportunity if you figure out a new path.” One essay within the piece even uses the virtual world online game “World of Warcraft” as a model for how intensely competitive company work teams will operate, 10 years from now.
First. Any time I read or hear anybody saying “this is how future events are going to play out,” I instinctively backpeddle. Remember the new economy that wasn’t ever going to end? Or the new world order of peace that was in ascendance … right up until September 11, 2001, when suddenly it wasn’t, anymore? Budget surpluses? Housing as a great and booming investment?



A few weeks ago, I found an old, hardcover book in an antique store in Foster, Rhode Island. It’s a science book called Astronomy, published as part of the “Whitman World Library” in 1963, and I intend to keep it on my shelf as an entertaining, cautionary tale for anyone who’s tempted to be too absolute about how the future will unfold. In a quick flip-read of the book, I found such predictive gems as: “the first man-made objects to explore the Moon will undoubtedly be automated tanks, radio-controlled from Earth or from an intermediate space station,” and “rocket experts believe that [space] stations will orbit Earth in great numbers in a few years.” The illustrations are a hoot.

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The Report from Iron Mountain

The System is designed to exert Total Control over the Lives of Individuals

Richard C. Cook
Global Research
May 17, 2009

What impresses me in the current financial crisis is the near-total failure of so-called progressives to appreciate the magnitude of what is going on or the level of intelligence behind it. How many will say, for instance, that the crash was deliberately engineered by the creation, then destruction, of the investment bubbles of the last decade?

“The development of a sophisticated form of slavery may be an absolute prerequisite for social control.”

When the financial system creates bubbles it drives up the cost of assets far beyond their true value in producing or storing wealth. When the bubbles burst the value of the assets plummets. Those with ready cash then buy them up on the cheap. When the dust settles more wealth has been concentrated in fewer hands. The rich get richer, and ordinary people are left in a deeper condition of indebtedness, poverty, and pressure to perform to the liking of the financial masters.

Progressives think the system needs to be “reformed.” Maybe the banking system needs to be re-regulated or even nationalized. Maybe it should be possible for families facing loss of their homes to get a lower monthly payment from a bankruptcy court. Maybe the government instead of the private sector should administer student loans.

What we fail to acknowledge is that the system itself is totalitarian. This means that it is designed to exert total control over the lives of individuals. We are accustomed to use this label when thinking of anachronisms of history like communism or fascism. We do not understand that globalist finance capitalism and the government which protects, enables, or even regulates it are also totalitarian.

What has happened in the last year as the financial system has seemingly gone belly-up, and is coming back only through massive government bailouts, is part of a pattern that has been around for decades if not centuries. How the controllers’ work was laid out in 1967 when Dial Press published a leaked copy of The Report from Iron Mountain. This was a study put together by a team of academics and analysts who met at the underground facility in New York that was home to the Hudson Institute.

The report began by identifying war as the central organizing principle of society. It stated, “War itself is the basic social system, within which other secondary modes of social organization conflict or conspire. It is the system which has governed most human societies of record, as it is today.”

The report said that, “The basic authority of a modern state over its people resides in its war powers.” It said that any failure of will by the ruling class could lead to “actual disestablishment of military institutions.” The effect on the system would be, the report said, “catastrophic.”
The appearance of the report caused a sensation when it came out at the onset of the Vietnam War. Officials within the government had no comment, and the report faded into history. But certain of its sections fit the situation in 2009 precisely.

This is because the report outlined the ways the civilian population of a developed nation could be controlled even in the absence of a large-scale war that disrupted their daily lives. One of these ways was defined as follows:

“A…possible surrogate for the control of potential enemies of society is the reintroduction, in some form consistent with modern technology and political process, of slavery – the development of a sophisticated form of slavery may be an absolute prerequisite for social control….” (Cited in Rule by Secrecy by Jim Marrs, 2000.)

We see the development of such a “sophisticated form of slavery” today. What else can a system be called that subjects the population to skyrocketing personal and household debt, a widening gap between the rich and everyone else, constant warfare justified as necessary to fight “terrorism,” erosion of personal freedoms, constantly expanding power allocated to the military and police, pervasive electronic eavesdropping, complete lack of accountability by politicians for their dishonesty and crimes, a mass media devoted solely to establishment propaganda, etc.

None of this seems to be diminishing under the Barack Obama administration. Even the economic recovery Obama is attempting to engineer through massive Keynesian deficit spending is expected by economists to be another “jobless” one like that of 2002-2005. Of course the unemployed or those who fear unemployment are easy to control. And the permanent series of Asian land wars George W. Bush instigated for control of resources and geopolitical leverage against Russia and China continue unabated.

None of this is accidental. As The Report from Iron Mountain made clear four decades ago, it’s what has been planned all along.

Trillions of Dollars in Debt-Based Currency
John F. Kennedy and Freedom

Thomas Woods on the Depression

America’s Money Machine

The Financial Storm:Reviewing Ellen Brown’s “Web of Debt:” Part II

Stephen Lendman
Global Research
May 15, 2009

This is the fourth in a series of articles on Ellen Brown’s superb 2007 book titled “Web of Debt,” now updated in a December 2008 third edition. It tells “the shocking truth about our money system, (how it) trapped us in debt, and how we can break free.” This article focuses on America’s “web of debt” entrapment.

The Debt Spider Captures America – American Workers Consigned to Debt Serfdom
America has been trapped for over two centuries, with today’s debt level way exceeding developing nations. Like bankrupt people staying “afloat by making the minimum payment(s) on (their) credit card(s), the government (avoids) bankruptcy by paying just the interest on its monster debt” – now double in size since Brown’s first edition and onerous enough for Controller of the Currency David Walker to warn earlier of its unaffordability by this year. If America can’t service the amount, it’s officially bankrupt and the economy will collapse. If it happens, IMF austerity will follow and turn America into Guatemala. Other vulnerable economies as well – permanent debt bondage and worker serfdom.

Catherine Austin Fitts was a former high-level Wall Street and government insider. She points to a “financial coup d’etat” conspiracy between the two to hollow out America, centralize power and knowledge, shift wealth to the top, destroy communities and local infrastructure, create new wealth by rebuilding them, and leave human wreckage in its wake.

Read more of this article, The Financial Storm

America’s “Money Machine”

Stephen Lendman
Global Research
May 9, 2009

Reviewing Ellen Brown’s “Web of Debt:” Part II

This is the second of several articles on Ellen Brown’s remarkable book titled “Web of Debt….the shocking truth about our money system, (how it) trapped us in debt, and how we can break free.” It’s a multi-part snapshot. Reading the entire book is strongly recommended. It is easily obtainable through Amazon or Brown’s site:

Web of Debt

Bankers Capture the Money Machine – Fighting for the Family Farm

By signing the Federal Reserve Act, Woodrow Wilson was a tool of big money. Yet he belatedly expressed regret, said “I have unwittingly ruined my country,” and called America “one of the worst ruled….most completely controlled governments in the civilized world (run by) a small group of dominant men.”
In the 1890s, “keeping the family homestead was a key political issue” given that foreclosures and evictions “were occurring in record numbers,” much like today. The “Bankers Manifesto of 1892″ spelled it out – a willful plan “to disenfranchise farmers and laborers of their homes and property,” again like today except that now our very freedom and futures are at stake as sinister forces aim to steal them by turning America into Guatemala and lock it down by police state repression.

The panic of 1893 caused an earlier depression – severe enough to establish a precedent of street protests, the result of the first ever march on Washington. Businessman/populist Jacob Coxey led his “Coxey’s Army (of around 500) from Massilon, Ohio (beginning March 25, Easter Sunday) to the nation’s capital to demand jobs and a return to debt and interest-free Greenbacks. Local police intervened. The marchers were disbanded. Coxey was arrested. He spent 20 days in jail for disturbing the peace and violating a local ordinance against walking on the grass. However, he was never charged, then released, and is now remembered for his heroics.
He began a tradition later sparking suffragist marches; unemployed WW I veterans for their “Bonus Bill” money; numerous anti-war and earlier civil rights protests; in 2004, one million in the nation’s capital for women’s rights, and the previous day thousands protesting IMF-World Bank policies.

The late 19th century Populist movement was the last serious challenge to private bankers’ monopoly power over the nation’s money. Journalist William Hope Harvey wrote a popular book titled “Coin’s Financial School” that explained the problem in simple English – that restricting silver coinage was a conspiracy to enrich “London-controlled Eastern financiers at the expense of farmers and debtors.” He called England “a money power that can dictate the money of the world, and thereby create world misery.”

He referred to the “Crime of 73″ that limited free silver coinage and replaced it with British gold. It forced America to pay England $200 million annually in gold in interest on its bonds and inspired William Jennings Bryan’s “Cross of Gold” speech. He nearly became president, but lost in a close (big-monied financed) race to William McKinley, but he, too, paid a price. He was later assassinated, likely for his protectionism, very much disadvantaging British bankers. With him gone, the Morgans and Rockefellers dominated US banking, and arranged for friendly leaders to run the country, Teddy Roosevelt included, a man with more bark than bite.
“The trusts and cartels remained the puppeteers with real power, pulling the strings of puppet politicians” who were bought and paid for like today.