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Irony: Andrew Jackson On a Federal Reserve Note

by John Rubino on January 9, 2010 · 32 comments

Karl Golovin, a retired customs agent and security director for Ron Paul’s presidential campaign, just forwarded a transcript of Andrew Jackson’s farewell address. It’s pretty amazing.  Here’s Karl’s intro, followed by an excerpt:

“During his presidency, Andrew Jackson viewed as his crowning achievement that he “Killed the Bank,” the 2nd Bank of the U.S. Our current ‘Federal Reserve,’ created in 1913, is the 3rd Bank of the U.S. Jackson was intent upon restoring an honest, Constitutional monetary system. There probably never has been written a more articulate, prophetic vision of what calamity would befall our nation if we did not diligently stay that course, as argued by Jackson in the following excerpt from his farewell address in 1837. It reads as if written this very day about our present financial circumstances:”

“. . . . In reviewing the conflicts which have taken place between different interests in the United States and the policy pursued since the adoption of our present form of Government, we find nothing that has produced such deep-seated evil as the course of legislation in relation to the currency. The Constitution of the United States unquestionably intended to secure to the people a circulating medium of gold and silver. But the establishment of a national bank by Congress, with the privilege of issuing paper money receivable in the payment of the public dues, and the unfortunate course of legislation in the several States upon the same subject, drove from general circulation the constitutional currency and substituted one of paper in its place.

It was not easy for men engaged in the ordinary pursuits of business, whose attention had not been particularly drawn to the subject, to foresee all the consequences of a currency exclusively of paper, and we ought not on that account to be surprised at the facility with which laws were obtained to carry into effect the paper system. Honest and even enlightened men are sometimes misled by the specious and plausible statements of the designing. But experience has now proved the mischiefs and dangers of a paper currency, and it rests with you to determine whether the proper remedy shall be applied.

The paper system being founded on public confidence and having of itself no intrinsic value, it is liable to great and sudden fluctuations, thereby rendering property insecure and the wages of labor unsteady and uncertain. The corporations which create the paper money cannot be relied upon to keep the circulating medium uniform in amount. In times of prosperity, when confidence is high, they are tempted by the prospect of gain or by the influence of those who hope to profit by it to extend their issues of paper beyond the bounds of discretion and the reasonable demands of business; and when these issues have been pushed on from day to day, until public confidence is at length shaken, then a reaction takes place, and they immediately withdraw the credits they have given, suddenly curtail their issues, and produce an unexpected and ruinous contraction of the circulating medium, which is felt by the whole community. The banks by this means save themselves, and the mischievous consequences of their imprudence or cupidity are visited upon the public. Nor does the evil stop here. These ebbs and flows in the currency and these indiscreet extensions of credit naturally engender a spirit of speculation injurious to the habits and character of the people. We have already seen its effects in the wild spirit of speculation in the public lands and various kinds of stock which within the last year or two seized upon such a multitude of our citizens and threatened to pervade all classes of society and to withdraw their attention from the sober pursuits of honest industry. It is not by encouraging this spirit that we shall best preserve public virtue and promote the true interests of our country; but if your currency continues as exclusively paper as it now is, it will foster this eager desire to amass wealth without labor; it will multiply the number of dependents on bank accommodations and bank favors; the temptation to obtain money at any sacrifice will become stronger and stronger, and inevitably lead to corruption, which will find its way into your public councils and destroy at no distant day the purity of your Government. Some of the evils which arise from this system of paper press with peculiar hardship upon the class of society least able to bear it. A portion of this currency frequently becomes depreciated or worthless, and all of it is easily counterfeited in such a manner as to require peculiar skill and much experience to distinguish the counterfeit from the genuine note. These frauds are most generally perpetrated in the smaller notes, which are used in the daily transactions of ordinary business, and the losses occasioned by them are commonly thrown upon the laboring classes of society, whose situation and pursuits put it out of their power to guard themselves from these impositions, and whose daily wages are necessary for their subsistence. It is the duty of every government so to regulate its currency as to protect this numerous class, as far as practicable, from the impositions of avarice and fraud. It is more especially the duty of the United States, where the Government is emphatically the Government of the people, and where this respectable portion of our citizens are so proudly distinguished from the laboring classes of all other nations by their independent spirit, their love of liberty, their intelligence, and their high tone of moral character. Their industry in peace is the source of our wealth and their bravery in war has covered us with glory; and the Government of the United States will but ill discharge its duties if it leaves them a prey to such dishonest impositions. Yet it is evident that their interests can not be effectually protected unless silver and gold are restored to circulation.

These views alone of the paper currency are sufficient to call for immediate reform; but there is another consideration which should still more strongly press it upon your attention.

Recent events have proved that the paper-money system of this country may be used as an engine to undermine your free institutions, and that those who desire to engross all power in the hands of the few and to govern by corruption or force are aware of its power and prepared to employ it. Your banks now furnish your only circulating medium, and money is plenty or scarce according to the quantity of notes issued by them. While they have capitals not greatly disproportioned to each other, they are competitors in business, and no one of them can exercise dominion over the rest; and although in the present state of the currency these banks may and do operate injuriously upon the habits of business, the pecuniary concerns, and the moral tone of society, yet, from their number and dispersed situation, they can not combine for the purposes of political influence, and whatever may be the dispositions of some of them their power of mischief must necessarily be confined to a narrow space and felt only in their immediate neighborhoods.

But when the charter for the Bank of the United States was obtained from Congress it perfected the schemes of the paper system and gave to its advocates the position they have struggled to obtain from the commencement of the Federal Government to the present hour. The immense capital and peculiar privileges bestowed upon it enabled it to exercise despotic sway over the other banks in every part of the country. From its superior strength it could seriously injure, if not destroy, the business of any one of them which might incur its resentment; and it openly claimed for itself the power of regulating the currency throughout the United States. In other words, it asserted (and it undoubtedly possessed) the power to make money plenty or scarce at its pleasure, at any time and in any quarter of the Union, by controlling the issues of other banks and permitting an expansion or compelling a general contraction of the circulating medium, according to its own will. The other banking institutions were sensible of its strength, and they soon generally became its obedient instruments, ready at all times to execute its mandates; and with the banks necessarily went also that numerous class of persons in our commercial cities who depend altogether on bank credits for their solvency and means of business, and who are therefore obliged, for their own safety, to propitiate the favor of the money power by distinguished zeal and devotion in its service. The result of the ill-advised legislation which established this great monopoly was to concentrate the whole moneyed power of the Union, with its boundless means of corruption and its numerous dependents, under the direction and command of one acknowledged head, thus organizing this particular interest as one body and securing to it unity and concert of action throughout the United States, and enabling it to bring forward upon any occasion its entire and undivided strength to support or defeat any measure of the Government. In the hands of this formidable power, thus perfectly organized, was also placed unlimited dominion over the amount of the circulating medium, giving it the power to regulate the value of property and the fruits of labor in every quarter of the Union, and to bestow prosperity or bring ruin upon any city or section of the country as might best comport with its own interest or policy.

We are not left to conjecture how the moneyed power, thus organized and with such a weapon in its hands, would be likely to use it. The distress and alarm which pervaded and agitated the whole country when the Bank of the United States waged war upon the people in order to compel them to submit to its demands can not yet be forgotten. The ruthless and unsparing temper with which whole cities and communities were oppressed, individuals impoverished and ruined, and a scene of cheerful prosperity suddenly changed into one of gloom and despondency ought to be indelibly impressed on the memory of the people of the United States. If such was its power in a time of peace, what would it not have been in a season of war, with an enemy at your doors? No nation but the freemen of the United States could have come out victorious from such a contest; yet, if you had not conquered, the Government would have passed from the hands of the many to the hands of the few, and this organized money power from its secret conclave would have dictated the choice of your highest officers and compelled you to make peace or war, as best suited their own wishes. The forms of your Government might for a time have remained, but its living spirit would have departed from it.

The distress and sufferings inflicted on the people by the bank are some of the fruits of that system of policy which is continually striving to enlarge the authority of the Federal Government beyond the limits fixed by the Constitution. The powers enumerated in that instrument do not confer on Congress the right to establish such a corporation as the Bank of the United States, and the evil consequences which followed may warn us of the danger of departing from the true rule of construction and of permitting temporary circumstances or the hope of better promoting the public welfare to influence in any degree our decisions upon the extent of the authority of the General Government. Let us abide by the Constitution as it is written, or amend it in the constitutional mode if it is found to be defective.

The severe lessons of experience will, I doubt not, be sufficient to prevent Congress from again chartering such a monopoly, even if the Constitution did not present an insuperable objection to it. But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing. It behooves you, therefore, to be watchful in your States as well as in the Federal Government. The power which the moneyed interest can exercise, when concentrated under a single head and with our present system of currency, was sufficiently demonstrated in the struggle made by the Bank of the United States. Defeated in the General Government, tho same class of intriguers and politicians will now resort to the States and endeavor to obtain there the same organization which they failed to perpetuate in the Union; and with specious and deceitful plans of public advantages and State interests and State pride they will endeavor to establish in the different States one moneyed institution with overgrown capital and exclusive privileges sufficient to enable it to control the operations of the other banks. Such an institution will be pregnant with the same evils produced by the Bank of the United States, although its sphere of action is more confined, and in the State in which it is chartered the money power will be able to embody its whole strength and to move together with undivided force to accomplish any object it may wish to attain. You have already had abundant evidence of its power to inflict injury upon the agricultural, mechanical, and laboring classes of society, and over those whose engagements in trade or speculation render them dependent on bank facilities the dominion of the State monopoly will be absolute and their obedience unlimited. With such a bank and a paper currency the money power would in a few years govern the State and control its measures, and if a sufficient number of States can be induced to create such establishments the time will soon come when it will again take the field against the United States and succeed in perfecting and perpetuating its organization by a charter from Congress.

It is one of the serious evils of our present system of banking that it enables one class of society–and that by no means a numerous one–by its control over the currency, to act injuriously upon the interests of all the others and to exercise more than its just proportion of influence in political affairs. The agricultural, the mechanical, and the laboring classes have little or no share in the direction of the great moneyed corporations, and from their habits and the nature of their pursuits they are incapable of forming extensive combinations to act together with united force. Such concert of action may sometimes be produced in a single city or in a small district of country by means of personal communications with each other, but they have no regular or active correspondence with those who are engaged in similar pursuits in distant places; they have but little patronage to give to the press, and exercise but a small share of influence over it; they have no crowd of dependents about them who hope to grow rich without labor by their countenance and favor, and who are therefore always ready to execute their wishes. The planter, the farmer, the mechanic, and the laborer all know that their success depends upon their own industry and economy, and that they must not expect to become suddenly rich by the fruits of their toil. Yet these classes of society form the great body of the people of the United States; they are the bone and sinew of the country–men who love liberty and desire nothing but equal rights and equal laws, and who, moreover, hold the great mass of our national wealth, although it is distributed in moderate amounts among the millions of freemen who possess it. But with overwhelming numbers and wealth on their side they are in constant danger of losing their fair influence in the Government, and with difficulty maintain their just rights against the incessant efforts daily made to encroach upon them. The mischief springs from the power which the moneyed interest derives from a paper currency which they are able to control, from the multitude of corporations with exclusive privileges which they have succeeded in obtaining in the different States, and which are employed altogether for their benefit; and unless you become more watchful in your States and check this spirit of monopoly and thirst for exclusive privileges you will in the end find that the most important powers of Government have been given or bartered away, and the control over your dearest interests has passed into the hands of these corporations.

The paper-money system and its natural associations–monopoly and exclusive privileges–have already struck their roots too deep in the soil, and it will require all your efforts to check its further growth and to eradicate the evil. The men who profit by the abuses and desire to perpetuate them will continue to besiege the halls of legislation in the General Government as well as in the States, and will seek by every artifice to mislead and deceive the public servants. It is to yourselves that you must look for safety and the means of guarding and perpetuating your free institutions. In your hands is rightfully placed the sovereignty of the country, and to you everyone placed in authority is ultimately responsible. It is always in your power to see that the wishes of the people are carried into faithful execution, and their will, when once made known, must sooner or later be obeyed; and while the people remain, as I trust they ever will, uncorrupted and incorruptible, and continue watchful and jealous of their rights, the Government is safe, and the cause of freedom will continue to triumph over all its enemies.

But it will require steady and persevering exertions on your part to rid yourselves of the iniquities and mischiefs of the paper system and to check the spirit of monopoly and other abuses which have sprung up with it, and of which it is the main support. So many interests are united to resist all reform on this subject that you must not hope the conflict will be a short one nor success easy. My humble efforts have not been spared during my administration of the Government to restore the constitutional currency of gold and silver, and something, I trust, has been done toward the accomplishment of this most desirable object; but enough yet remains to require all your energy and perseverance. The power, however, is in your hands, and the remedy must and will be applied if you determine upon it….”

{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

khl January 10, 2010 at 6:51 am

Its amazing. Jackson describes simply and precisely what happens when we print up too much money and then what occurs afterwards and the resulting crash. Predating Mises by nearly half a century, he shows a complete understanding of the adverse affects of monetary policy. I expecting to see the words, “Crackup Boom.” Obviously others had similar ideas. Jefferson wrote extensively on the dangers of allowing monetary policy to be set by private interests. And yet he allowed Hamilton’s central bank to continue unimpeded. But Jackson actively fought the central bank and took down Nicholas Biddle. Recession wracked many parts of the country as Biddle cynically cut back on credit to pressure Jackson to renew the bank’s charter. But in the end, Jackson prevailed and the Bank died an inglorious death. Much like what is sure to happen to our Fed, the sooner the better.

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Wester January 11, 2010 at 12:44 am

Downfall of Mother Bank, by Henry R. Robinson, 1833.

http://www.neh.gov/news/humanities/2008-01/images/MotherBank.jpg

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john January 11, 2010 at 8:39 am

VERY Nice write up. A.Jackson is one of my favorite presidents. ty

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Jeff Davis January 11, 2010 at 10:38 am

What’s really ironic is that though Jackson “killed the bank” which was an admirable thing is that Jackson was an avowed ‘nationalist’. Jackson also advocated central power over constitutional principles. His Vice President John C. Calhoun (who has been referred sometimes to as “The Final Founding Father”) adhered to the “Principles of 98″, Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions and limited central government and States Rights. People too often forget that the US Constitution was created to limit government above all else not as an instrument to govern and control.

Congress passed the Force Bill which Jackson signed, which empowered the president to use military power to force states to obey all federal laws. Jackson sent warships to Charleston Harbor yet the crisis was politically averted by reductions in tariffs. South Carolina had acted democratically and constitutionally proper as their right as a sovereign State.

In a 1830 Jefferson dinner Jackson proposed a toast: “Our federal Union—it must and shall be preserved.” over the Nullification Crisis.

John C. Calhoun replied “The Union; next to our liberty most dear!…”

Liberty over government.

Nothing demonstrates a historian’s bias or gatekeeper history as their telling and interpretation of this event and its meaning. I found a few examples:

‘Calhoun shot back a rambling toast to states’ rights.’

“Jackson was asked to give a toast, which he did, proclaiming the preservation of the Union over all else. His views were now known — he was against nullification. Calhoun tried to respond by advocating liberty before union, but he accomplished little”

Calhoun’s complete toast is as follows: “The Union: next to our Liberty the most dear! May we all remember that it can only be preserved by respecting the rights of the States, and distributing equally the benefit and burden of the Union”

Thus with Lincoln’s unnecessary war 30 years later to martially impose the primacy of the Federal Government over the States without benefit of ballot, convention or amendment (the real legacy of the Civil War) we have the Empire, the current Federal reserve, the IRS, direct election of Senators, a permanent military industrial complex and the integration of Wall Street, banksters and a myriad of special and foreign interests institutionalized into the Federal government for their benefit.

Calhoun was correct one and before the lazy, the indoctrinated, the politically correct bring up their dishonest distractions such as “Calhoun supported slavery and Calhoun was a slave owner” arguments. Andrew Jackson was a slave owner as well.

Jackson never killed the bank , he postponed it.

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Timothy Baxter May 30, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Thank you for the articulate perspective, Jeff.

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Richard C. Montei January 11, 2010 at 12:27 pm

Most of us in the U.S. go from the simple exchange principles of the
lemonade stand to the befuddlements of tax laws without time or
inclination to learn much more of the larger picture of monetary control.
Though simple in its nature, a dollar issued by debt, such as a Federal
Reserve note, and a dollar issued by credit, such as the Greenback of
Lincoln’s time is baffling to most people.
Jackson was brave, and the greatest of all soldiers-willing to risk his life
during war and also during his presidency. If you tally all the millions of
people sacrificed to wars created by the moneyed interests Jackson mentioned,
you can begin to understand his fervor.
One can only hope that the genius that Jackson represents can come alive
today and give our nation the grace and blessing that it truly deserves.

Richard C. Montei

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max January 11, 2010 at 6:27 pm

I was all fired up to write a response. Then I read Jeff Davis’, which is precisely what I was going to write. I implore all to read Jeff Davis’ comment (I assume that’s not your real name, but a tip of the hat to one of the greatest Constitutionalist leaders this country has ever seen.). You, sir, are a rare breed these days: A person who knows the real, true history of this nation.

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merin January 11, 2010 at 6:31 pm

I was all fired up to write a response. Then I read Jeff Davis’, which is precisely what I was going to write. I implore all to read that comment (I assume that’s not your real name, but a tip of the hat to one of the greatest Constitutionalist leaders this country has ever seen.). You, sir, are a rare breed these days: A person who knows the real, true history of this nation.

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Camorim January 12, 2010 at 10:31 am

Of course Jackson never killed the bank as never postponed it. Because this matter isn’t a feat of one man and never was and never will be, but to the many, the people, who gives support to thing like this to come true. Was first the peaple mentality that changed, little by littles by the pervasive ideology namely socialism. To the USA came together capitalism the socialism and almost nobody pay attention his work. And I think only now feww pay.

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clay barham January 13, 2010 at 9:16 am

And…..you’ll get the rest of the story from a book on Amazon called THE CHANGING FACE OF DEMOCRATS, also on claysamerica.com. The 19th century Democrats, from Jefferson, Madison, to Jackson and Cleveland, were staunch state’s rights people, and not for the defense of slavery but for all the people seeking to retain local self-government instead of what we have now. claysamerica.com

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PETER J. NICKITAS January 16, 2010 at 9:27 pm

Such an intelligent discussion I find difficult to find elsewhere on the Web.

Andrew Jackson’s farewell address goes to the nature of money. With the exception of the nature of one’s relationship with, or acknowledgement of, Deity, no other subject deserves primary attention of any individual contemplating life amongst other people. Restated, the nature of money is the most important subject in politics, next to the relationship or acknowledgement of Deity.

President Jackson vanquished the British at the Battle of New Orleans and the lineal, devilish spawn of the Bank of England, the Bank of the United States. He knew what he was doing and he knew what he was saying in his Farewell Address. (Side note: three of the greatest presidential farewell addresses came from three distinguished generals — Washington, Jackson, and Eisenhower).

I disagree with Jeff Davis over the nature of the War of the Confederate Insurrection, or, as the Department of Defense puts it, the War of the Rebellion. The war addressed the conflict of the Money Power versus the People’s Power. The battle lines formed with President Lincoln and the American Greenback on one side and the British system of “Money as Debt in the Hands of the Oligarchs” on the other. Rather than pay 24 to 36 percent interest on loans from British banks to fight the war, President Lincoln and Congress created the Greenback in 1861, in an exercise of the most sovereign power of the people, to create and control its own money, just as American Colonies, most especially Pennsylvania, had done before the 1764 Currency Act of the English Parliament. The Greenback enabled the nation to pay for the war, build land grant universities, pay the costs of the Homestead Act of 1862, and expand westward, without ruinous interest. The states in rebellion had no such currency.

Slavery, an immoral institution, served the moneyed interests, who profited handsomely from slavery, as a pretext for division of the nation between slave states and “free states”. Their aim was division of the United States into smaller and smaller units, the better to divide and rule them financially. President Lincoln desired to save the Union first, to show that representative government was not absurd, and to check the Money Power. He would have saved it with or without slavery. The September 17, 1862 victory at Antietam, known in the South as Sharpsburg, gave President Lincoln the military victory he needed to make the war a moral struggle; he made the Emancipation Proclamation afterwards, effective 1 January 1863. Oh, yes — the Russian Navy lay off the coast near San Francisco and the Virginia Capes at the same time — and dared the Royal Navy to fight. The British backed off. Always remember that the Russians saved the United States in our most perilous hour.

Support H.R. 1207 — Rep. Ron Paul’s “Audit the Fed” bill. That is a good first step.

Pay close attention to Bloomberg’s Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Fed to force disclosure of the distribution of “TARP” and other Federal Reserve monies. Bloomberg won in U.S. District Court. The case is before the 2nd Circuit now.

Support the American Monetary Act of 2009, a bill that Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) introduced, to take the power of issuing money away from the Federal Reserve, and to put it into the hands of the people, in Congress, as the Constitution requires. This bill will lead to the recreation of the American Greenback, as President Lincoln issued.

Read “The Web of Debt” by Ellen H. Brown.

Long live the Bank of North Dakota, which is backed by the full faith and credit of the state, operates like its predecessor in Pennsylvania by loaning money to farmers and workers at much lower rates than private banks, and remits the interest to the state treasury to keep taxes low. The Non-Partisan League, the successors to the Populists, created the Bank in 1919, with the State Grain Elevator Association, to break the ruinous grip of big Minneapolis banks and the Minneapolis Grain Exchange over North Dakota’s farmers and workers. The Bank of North Dakota works. The present Governor of N.D., John Hoeven (R), was the president of the bank in the 1990′s and lauds it whenever the topic comes up. Every state should have its own bank like the Bank of North Dakota, if we, the people are to break centralized private and centralized public power for the sakes of liberty, peace, and the prosperity of ourselves and our descendants.

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wokeupmad January 17, 2010 at 1:50 am

What doe’s it take to prevent history repeating? From Liberty and capitalism, to creeping collectivism, then onto Facism, then War . Then we do it all again. There must be a better way….

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Clark January 17, 2010 at 11:02 pm

Break the “Fed”.
Throw them in prison.
If the government won’t do it, we must do it ourselves.

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marc January 18, 2010 at 5:03 am

I too use to think of Jackson as a “hero”, but after listening to Webster Tarpley’s recent podcast (Jan-09-2010), I have re-evaluate what is the truth. After hearing the podcast, I read all the wiki and nndb pages on Jackson, Burr, Calhoun, Clay, VanBurien, etc. His relationship to Burr is most troubling (suspected British agent). After the 2nd Bank’s charter was annulled, the panic of 1837 broke out and many states defaulted which lead eventually to the Civil War.

His historical sketch starts around the 14 min. mark. – Very interesting to say the least. (you’ll have to skip over the annoying commercials)

http://podcast.gcnlive.com/podcast/world_crisis/0109102.mp3

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Jeff Davis January 20, 2010 at 12:24 am

“I disagree with Jeff Davis over the nature of the War of the Confederate Insurrection, or, as the Department of Defense puts it, the War of the Rebellion. The war addressed the conflict of the Money Power versus the People’s Power. The battle lines formed with President Lincoln and the American Greenback on one side and the British system of “Money as Debt in the Hands of the Oligarchs” on the other.”

The war started long before any “greenback legislation”. It’s ridiculous to use a war invention as a pretense for the war. Lincoln was a servant of the monied interests, the GOP were just a continuation of the Hamiltonian policy and tradition and service to centralized private cartel banking and the emerging American financial elites. He greased their tracks. The current conditions prove this, Lincoln was a Whig above all else. He laid the foundation
As to your imputing “slavery into 19th century America, Such comparative is vastly disingenuous as the recent book “Complicity” proves beyond a shadow of a doubt. It is IMO nothing more than politically correct revisionism and a continuation of the victor’s version of history”. Will you wave the bloody shirt next? It was doomed as an economic institution yet was legal as allowed. Changes in the law via enlightenment and change would have occurred as it did elsewhere without bloodshed and been superior to the 620,000 American dead while the GOP engaged in profiteering, corruption on scales unseen and the imposition of GOP party control for the next 80 years which was the design of and end result of all their policies. Slavery was a later just an excuse to justify an unconstitutional and illegal war. The changes Lincoln martially imposed changed America forever. The Founder’s Republic, its implicit contract and States’ equality with the Federal government died at Appomattox.

“Slavery, an immoral institution, served the moneyed interests, who profited handsomely from slavery, as a pretext for division of the nation between slave states and “free states”. Their aim was division of the United States into smaller and smaller units, the better to divide and rule them financially.”

There has been divisions in America always. This is just nonsensical rhetoric but like everywhere the “golden Rule” applies and Lincoln served it well.

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Xaria December 28, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Thanks for striantg the ball rolling with this insight.

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PETER J. NICKITAS January 20, 2010 at 7:35 pm

Dear Jeff:

I do not wish you one of General Sherman’s neckties that he named after you. That said, here are a couple of points in rebuttal.

No doubt exists that European monied oligarchs wanted a divided United States before Abraham Lincoln’s election. They wanted a north and a south, and a further subdivided south, to divide, rule, and exploit the continent. Take it from Rothschild of London.

When Lincoln won the election, one idea presented to him by Sec’y of State-in-waiting Henry Seward was war against England. Lincoln, of course, declined this rash approach at unifying the nation against a foreign foe. England, however, was the biggest foe of the Union with its rapacious bankers offering to loan the United States money at 24 to 36 percent interest to fight the war.

The Greenback Act of 1861 was an act of President Lincoln’s administration, not his predecessors. One estimate has that the issuance of greenbacks saved the nation about $400 million in interest. For the 19th Century, that was REAL money.

Pres. Lincoln’s creation of the greenback was the recommendation of Henry Carey, an economic theorist who favored public works, internal improvements, high tariffs, and publicly controlled credit, in contrast to the Bank of England’s system of privately controlled credit with a crown charter. Carey’s system was called “The American System”, in contrast to the British System. Carey was a Whig. When you say Lincoln continued Whig policies, you state the facts accurately in large part.

Slavery was immoral then, and it is immoral now. Slavery was dying institution, and it was not not dying fast enough in the decade leading to the election of Abraham Lincoln. It took the war and the 13th Amendment to overrule the Dred Scott case of 1857. In my opinion, however, slavery was a powerful pretext for magnification of differences between north and south, in the hands of moneychangers desiring the division for their own exploitation. To mirror Lincoln, the moneychangers would have fought to keep slavery, or they would have fought to abolish slavery, so long as they could divide and exploit the union.

The Fourteenth Amendment, in my opinion, did two things. It created national citizenship that rested upon the privileges and immunities of individual human rights, with the guarantees of due process and equal protection of the law. On the down side, section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment shackled the people to the national debt, by stating for the first time that the “debt of the United States shall never be questioned”. The amendment did so by repudiating the debt of the states formerly in rebellion.

End the Fed.
Every man a king.
Every woman a queen.
Every state with its own Bank of North Dakota.
Long live local currencies.

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Jeff Davis January 25, 2010 at 2:22 am

Dear Peter:

Why are you avoiding the central issues with your pedantic adjuct history lesson that were neither discussed nor a part of the subsequent discussion? I am well aware of European designs and hopes during the war but how can you excuse Lincoln’s unconstitutional and unnecessary war which still awaits any clarification or justification from you. And my statement still stands unrefuted that ‘greenbacks’ were a by product of the war not a cause as you stated. Cart before the horse is still valid.

“The battle lines formed with President Lincoln and the American Greenback on one side and the British system of “Money as Debt in the Hands of the Oligarchs””

“”The Greenback Act of 1861 was an act of President Lincoln’s administration, not his predecessors. One estimate has that the issuance of greenbacks saved the nation about $400 million in interest. For the 19th Century, that was REAL money.

yet the war produced America’s first “millionaires” whose families are still iconic today, the war cost more than any interest saved, all were in the Northern states, instituted and profited Northern industrial and financial interests who directed and motivated Lincoln’s war. Politically as iwas its design, it imposed a GOP party monoply that existed for almost 8 decades. It martially and permanently imposed the “Hamiltonians” completely over the Jeffersonian view and institutionalized Federal corruption for special interests geginning from the “Big Shoddy” to the DoD’s procurement scandals known and unknown of today aka ‘Empire’. That was the real legacy of the 14th amendment as well. The pig trough was opened and no one today dares go back. Lincoln would have approved, no doubt Andrew Jackson as well

Had not Lincoln invaded and blockaded the Confederate States of America in an unnecessary war that essentially martially imposed centralization and primacy of a central government of a few and the institutionalization of Northern financial interests aka Wall Street via the US treasury and ‘money for votes” into Federal permanence and domination, your argument IMO is baseless. The government and Empire we have today had its cornerstone laid by Lincoln and to a lesser extent Jackson. Yet even Lincoln later realized his bargain with the devil and commented on it whether genuine was a part of what he accomplished. An income tax was first implemented as well as the selling of US debt in Europe including his minimizing financial as you stated by using greenbacks where US banks first inoculated themselves in European imperial financial systems. Nor will any historian argue that reconciliation and compromise would not have eventually occurred in the future required by mutual benefit.

Not to be nit picking either but there was no “Department of Defense” another federal PR carrnard in 1861 and the use of term of the “War of the Rebellion” was subsequently used to justify the war and minimize that it was a war of coercion. Much like Texas v White (1869) ruled secession illegal constitutionally after the fact. Sholdn’t Lincoln have asked the Court before invading nuetral Maryland? As to Dred Scott as posed by historians, who paid the enormous legal bills that would have been required to vaunt such a legal front for a slabve? It would change the whole argument. No one still knows then again, the “Secret Six” and their fascism were kept secret for decades nor are they or their motivations even discussed in American secondary educational levels. Gubmint always be right.

Hardly democratic by any means based on the words in the Declaration of Independence that the uSA was created. There was no rebellion as the Southern States followed the existing and accepted democratic and legal processes of withdrawing from the Union along the same procedures as when said same States ratified the Constitution. Nor did they have any designs on the United States. It negates the whole iconcept of a “Civil War”. It was a war of money and power like all wars are. The idea that it would “destroy the United States of America” as so often stated is nonsense as well. It would have still existed for a time, just fewer in number until a reconcilliation. Lincoln saw the South as a competitive threat to the interests he served and acted for and was financed by.
Lincoln was a Whig above all else and all that entailed. He believed in the centralization of a National government and vigorous application and use of its treasury for “internal improvement” aka graft, corruption, deals, etc. of which the South financed by 60 to 70% according to Taurig tariff tax tables, (1896). It must also must be remembered that slaves represented the second largest liquid source of open capital in the US with land being first. The North destroyed slavery not for humanitarian reasons but financial ones. The Federal government did not need to compensate slave owners as done elsewhere all over the world where slavery was eliminated bloodlessy and northern banks and financial houses were relieved of millions and millions of dollars in liabilities. The biggest slave owners in the US were the banks of New York, Philadelphia, Newport and Boston. Their cities were developed and flourished by their mercantilism, shipping of slavery of the Middle Passage for 150 years. Jim Crow is eternally demonized yet no one mentions the black codes of northern states or New York banks financing African slavery via the ivory trades until the 1940′s . Please don’t shill that “phony baloney” Great Emancipator ‘altar of Lincoln ” altrusistic crapfest. It holds no water anymore than the 8 northern born and educated US Supreme Court judges who witnessed the war between the states and voted for Plessy v. Ferguson in 1896. The one dissenting vote was the Southerner with slave holding family heritage or that the Klan Revival of the 1920′s originated and were incorporated in southern Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania with their idea of the morality of slavery.

He destroyed the Founder’s Republic and he did so by force of arms without benefit of ballot, amendment or convention. That was Lincoln’s real legacy. He cared little about slavery. Licolnn remarked AFTER his Emancipation Proclamation in Jan 1965, a wartime PR measure now lionized for his duplictious and dishonest humanitarism when asked what would become of the newly freed slaves, Lincoln’s disingenuous concern about slavery was they could “root, hog or die”. No one in mid 1860′s beleived in racial equality and those that did could be counted on two hands so please spare me the “PC morality” issue or that slavery would go westward because there were less than a 100 slaves in total in the territories/future states and the non-issue of “slave power” are diversions because the climatology west could not support it. As the American industrial revolution taught us, it was far cheaper to pay low wages than cradle to grace and legal responsibilities and extremely high costs of slavery. Remember Massachussetts first legalized slavery in the colonies. I don’t apologize or condone the South’s pats but your victor’s view of history won’t scour.

As H.L Mencken (no friend of Southern States) and who coined the term “Bible Belt” said on Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address:

Note on the Gettysburg Address

by H.L. Mencken

The Gettysburg speech was at once the shortest and the most famous oration in American history…the highest emotion reduced to a few poetical phrases. Lincoln himself never even remotely approached it. It is genuinely stupendous. But let us not forget that it is poetry, not logic; beauty, not sense. Think of the argument in it. Put it into the cold words of everyday. The doctrine is simply this: that the Union soldiers who died at Gettysburg sacrificed their lives to the cause of self-determination – that government of the people, by the people, for the people, should not perish from the earth. It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in the battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern themselves.

And no legal or educational authority has ever proven Alexander Stephens or John C. Calhoun constuitional writings to this day …wrong. I will not bow at your Altar of Lincoln nor subscribe to its blasphemies. Deo Vindice.

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ZNOFOB January 26, 2010 at 11:54 am

A good discussion on a timely topic. Historians unite.

I love Jackson for doing what he did to the bank, but he was a monster in other respects, such as the final solution for indians. Being native american, it leaves me torn. Like our country.

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PETER J. NICKITAS January 28, 2010 at 8:05 pm

Jeff:

I read your remarks.

You are not being straight with your analysis. You show pettiness that does not befit you. I do not claim Greenbacks caused the war. I do not claim the Department of Defense existed during the War of the Rebellion. If one reads publications from today’s Dep’t of Defense, one sees this title for that four year conflagration on the North American continent. Refrain from shooting at straw men of your own creation.

Southern states kept Republican Lincoln off the ballot. I have read as many as ten states kept him off the ballot. The South refused to deal with the newly elected Lincoln. Your pratings on republicanism are touching, but, as Nat King Cole said, “they sound like a lie.” Rather, they sound more like Scarlett O’Hara bewailing the Lost Cause.

I do not claim that northerners were all moral and all northerners abhorred slavery. Indeed, northern aristocrats had much in common with southern aristocrats — a love of money at the expense of as many people as possible by any means necessary, and a desire to divide, disrupt, and deceive honest, law-abiding laboring people in the north and the south.

Pres. Lincoln exercised his lawful authority and refused to surrender federal property at Ft. Sumter and other points south of the Mason Dixon Line. Rebels fired the first shot. Federals fired the last. Robert E. Lee got over it. Why don’t you?

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Jeff Davis February 3, 2010 at 2:51 am

Peter:

Thank you for proving my point. Anyone in a rebuttal who uses tired canards of “Scarlett O’Hara bewailing the Lost Cause.”, ridiculous Nat King Cole quotes as substantiation, “Robert E. Lee got over it. Why don’t you?” and then accuse me of pettiness and strawman never really had much to say in the first place.

You stated: “Southern states kept Republican Lincoln off the ballot. I have read as many as ten states kept him off the ballot. The South refused to deal with the newly elected Lincoln.”

Abraham Lincoln was not “off on the ballot” in ten states in 1860. It is a victor’s myth, an uncomfortable truth for you that you ignore or were not aware, A victor’s orthodoxy that you swallowed hook, line and sinker. “Actually, back in 1860, “on the ballot” had no meaning. Private ballots were legal (in fact, no other ballots existed; parties printed their own ballots and distributed them to whomever wanted one). Lincoln didn’t receive any votes in ten southern states, not because he was kept off any ballot, but because his campaign didn’t nominate any presidential elector candidates in those states.”

You might go back and read to comprehend the Jefferson’s DoI’s preamble and read the political activities that Vermont and New Hampshire are currently attempting in this very day and time and their touching “pratings of republicanism”. What Lincoln inaugurated and martially imposed chickens are coming home to roost. I suspect Article V has probably been discussed more in the last ten years than in the preceding 234 years. The debt of the Federal government government is irrevocably unsustainable as currently designed. A change will come sooner than later.

As to Lincoln’s lawful authority, he had none as secession, interposition nullification were active in thought, politics and memory. They were not unreasonable nor ill thought. The eleven Southern states had no designs on the north and acted legally and democratically. Is there no higher action? Only the north viewed their separation as a threat and as a loss of revenue. Lincoln said so. West Point and Annapolis taught secession as lawful until the 1840′s which explains the class loyalties along State lines they took at the beginning of Lincoln’s unconstitutional and unnecessary war.

As to you “gubmint indoctrination” of ‘Pres. Lincoln exercised his lawful authority and refused to surrender federal property at Ft. Sumter and other points south of the Mason Dixon Line.’

It was not Federal property. In fact Ft. Sumter was ceded to the United States government which was South Carolina’s assigned agent as South Carolina (no compensation occurred and SC’s revenues more than paid for the structure). They were rebuked when they even offered to pay for it by Seward on Lincoln’s instructions. It was Lincoln’s red herring and how do you explain his invasion of Maryland? and imprisonment of legally elected legislators. He unilaterally and selectively changed the agreed upon compact of all the States for a few. That’s Lincoln’s real legacy. It’s no accident it is never taught except at higher academic levels.

England made and signed peace with 13 separate colonies, not a nation nor any national government but to those State’s agents. The issue of sovereignty is the whole key to our discussion. “We the People or the “Government” or the Nation. All are distinct. It used to be always the former until Lincoln nor did anybody ever vote for the latter by ballot, convention or amendment. Any mention of the 10th Amendment draws indoctrinated contempt and bumper sticker wisdom. Who really benefits from this?

You still continue to ignore the Founding Father’s arguments, designs and intentions, sovereignty, the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, Lincoln’s martial coercion and ignore that his despotism against the ” honest, law-abiding laboring people in the north and the south” and alignment with financial interests. After all who financed Lincoln?

As to Robert E. Lee ‘getting over it’ as you so ludicrously stated. Lee is quoted in 1867: “The consolidation of the States into one vast empire, sure to be aggressive abroad and despotic at home, will be the certain precursor of ruin which will overwhelmed all that preceded it.”

I have no wish to re-fight the war. But the victors do write the history and we are all a product of it. Some of us ignore the revisionism and the political correctness and inbred knee jerk nationalism that is too easily accepted without question yet some realize that the American Experiment did not end with Andrew Jackson and certainly not with Abraham “Root Hog or Die” Lincoln anymore than I beleived the Gulf of Tonkin or WMD’s in Iraq or that the Federal Reserve has only the nation’s best economic interest at heart.

Lincoln laid the cornerstone and destroyed the Republic by imposing the primacy of the Federal government over the states, eliminating checks, balance and competitive accountability and limits to his newly centralized National government to even fewer and fewer unaccountable interests. It has always been the natural inclinations of all governments since antiquity to do so as John C. Calhoun predicted. Even the most rabid revisionist and the the most dogmatic nationalist patriot/scholar have never refuted him, Jefferson Davis or Alexander Stephens despite their best efforts.
I choose the strict construction and the Rule of Law as solutions over bloodletting and fratricide based on the folly of Lincoln’ or Jackson’s without fault nationalism bypassing all reason, using as true and honest history and interpretation of it. IMO, you proved little.

Agree to disagree.

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PETER J. NICKITAS February 13, 2010 at 1:17 am

Jeff:

You do concede that the 14th Amendment came into existence after Lincoln’s assassination. You do concede that the unintended beneficiary of the 14th Amendment was not the non-Caucasian American citizen but an entity not even mentioned in the U.S. Constitution — the corporation.

The 9th and 10th Amendments exist, in my opinion, as a residuary clause in a will that the Framers left for posterity, to ensure that the national government had limited powers and the people and the states kept the rest.

You have not discussed the perverted use of the 10th Amendment by monied oligarchs as a pretext to keep the national government from breaking up trusts. Jefferson favored another clause in the Bill of Rights, to maintain freedom from commercial monopoly. Have you seen it recently?

You have not discussed the perverted use of the 10th Amendment as a pretext for maintenance of de jure racism.

You have not discussed that the 9th Amendment gets no discussion whatsoever, even though it is a repository of people’s power against all government and private power oppression. I know that Justice Goldberg discussed the 9th Amendment in his concurrence in Griswold v. Connecticut. I know that one Professor Black discussed it in his book that saw the 9th Amendment, 2nd paragraph of the Declaration of Independence, and the Privileges and Immunities Clause of the 14th Amendment as the passages in America’s law that needed real resurrection. Do you favor the 9th Amendment as a buttress to the 2nd? I do.

Fort Sumter was national property, you conceded.

Robert E. Lee foresaw oppression at the hands of the national government. The national government has oppressed people in this nation and the rest of the world. Over what was Lee complaining? Was he forecasting imperialist wars that ought not to be fought? He helped to win one — the Mexican War. Had he changed his mind about war like Smedley Butler? What light have you to shed on these questions?

Have you any refuting evidence against the fact that Lincoln sought a conciliatory approach after Appomattox, but was assassinated too soon to implement it? He did order the band to play “Dixie” at the celebration of the surrender.

Are you going to address the nature of money, Jeff?

Do you favor a constitutional amendment that declares corporations not to be persons under the Fourteenth Amendment or any other provision of the United States Constitution or any inferior state or local law?

The Gulf of Tonkin and 9/11 were false pretexts for war and oppression as much as the Reichstag Fire of 1933. I concur with you on the Gulf of Tonkin.

I have not read your response on my comments on British lenders. You do not disagree then?

You speak long and emotionally against the oppression a strong national government brings in its train. Strong national governments have the means to oppress, and the track record of oppression in many, many cases. So does strong, concentrated private power — in spades. Why do you not complain about strong, concentrated private power? Concentrated private power is much more resistant to accountability as a strong national government, unless, as the present situation shows, concentrated private power hijacks the national government. Jefferson made the point of diffusing both private and government power. He did that as governor by favoring the allotment of 50 acres to every adult free male, for the sakes of self-sufficiency, diffusion of private wealth, and a check on government power.

How best to check private power than to abolish the Fed, reissue greenbacks, and promote local currencies? How best to check national power than to encourage local currencies and the payment of taxes therein! Comments, Jeff?

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Jejjejimbo October 28, 2010 at 11:39 pm

You all are too much. There are way too many commodities to return to a commodity standard in the US, not to mention the fact that the US’ wealth was never based on any kind of metal standard to begin with…

Where’s the push for the crude oil standard, it makes literally as much sense as a gold/silver standard.

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mike dillard February 17, 2011 at 9:37 pm

I personally think the next commodity you will need to have is gold/silver, I saw this coming in 07 and did nothing about it cuz every buddy was say your crazy the us dollar wont get week the us is just to strong. What do you know now gold is at the highest its been in a very long time so don’t let people to tell you otherwise mikedillard

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John September 8, 2013 at 8:53 pm

Very true now look at where its going Success Factors

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