TCS Daily


Banks Winning at Expense of Taxpayers

By Larry Kudlow - July 14, 2009 12:00 AM

Banks surged and stocks followed yesterday, mostly on the heels of high expectations for trading firm Goldman Sachs, which really is more of a hedge fund than a real bank.

Last Thursday, I said banks are my favorite stock market sector. So I got it right one time in a row. With a steep upward Treasury curve, even a banker can make money borrowing at near-zero and lending at much higher rates.

Deposits are flowing into the big banks. Mark-to-market reform permits cash-flow valuation to replace fictional distressed-market sales which have unnecessarily crashed bank capital and profits. Toxic assets can be funded by low rates for as far as the eye can see. And let's not forget that President Obama — the biggest government-bond salesman in our nation's history — needs Goldman and other banks to re-offer the massive, record-breaking, and unprecedented Treasury debt sales to the public.

In other words, our terrible spending-and-borrowing story is at least good for somebody — even if it does mean banks are winning at the expense of taxpayers.

Incidentally, the federal budget deficit update for June was horrible. Year to date the deficit broke past $1 trillion. Now, June is always a surplus month. But this year it's a deficit month.

We are cruising toward a $2 trillion budget deficit for fiscal year 2009. Federal spending is up 23 percent against the year-ago level. Recessionary revenues are plunging; they are down 16 percent. Personal tax receipts are off 22 percent and, get this, corporate taxes are off an astounding 57 percent.

But no one in Washington gives one hoot about business. What a pity. Businesses are the ground-zero job creators in the economy.

So all is not well in this story. But as far as yesterday goes, stocks were very bullish.


This article first appeared on Kudlow's Money Politic$.
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55 Comments

Not the wisest use for the money
It really bugs me to agree with Kudlow about anything. But the fact is this: the bailout worked.

Goldman Sachs was headed toward the rocks, and other companies were going down to their right and to their left. But the federal government threw them a lifesaver. And now they're over the hump, and sound once more.

Plus, they paid the money back. So Uncle Sam wasn't out a dime on his timely investment. The stimulus did its job and went directly back into our federal pocket again.

Of course when the numbers are reported, it doesn't look like that. The outgoing expense is still a ledger entry under the heading "expenditure".. and adds to our ostensible deficit. While the same money going back into the system is just quietly entered as "revenue".

My personal opinion is that the money would have been better spent had they found a way to lend it directly to small, unincorporated business proprietors.. where the owner holds personal liability for the loan. These fellows are very exposed during business downturns. They get stiffed by the big boys when they decide to enter Chapter 11 and welsh on their debts to subs. And they are responsible for the employment of a large number of Americans.

I know Forest will agree with me on this one. The money could have been better deployed. But at least it's coming back into the Treasury now.

Off topic; may be not. "Rural air travel subsidies gain big budget boost"
http://apnews.myway.com/article/20090714/D99DT3JO0.html

The legislation approved by a House Appropriations subcommittee would give $173 million in the upcoming budget year to the Essential Air Service, which provides subsidies to small airlines to fly "unprofitable routes".

That's a $53 million increase. In many cases the flights are "nearly empty". In other instances, such as flights between Buffalo Niagara International Airport and Jamestown, N.Y., just 76 miles away, it's quicker to drive than fly.

The Bush administration sought unsuccessfully to cut the subsidies. But the Essential Air Services program enjoys strong support among lawmakers; in April, 22 senators wrote White House budget director Peter Orszag to DEMAND (emphasis mine) more money for it.

"Simply put, the Essential Air Service program was a promise made to rural America, and a promise that must be kept," the senators wrote.

Indeed, the subsidies also have a new benefactor in President Barack Obama, who requested the big increase in his February budget submission "despite acknowledging that the program is inefficient".

(emphasis, by enclosing in quotes, as there is no better way, is mine)

It's totally off topic
The story just concerns pork. That's very different than the bank bailout. If you have any insights on the subject under discussion, let us have them.

Banks don't create wealth
Entrepreneurs do.

Wisdom from the Great North
Here's a couple of interesting facts. How much money has the Canadian government spent bailing out their banking system?

$0.00.

And what percentage of US and Canadian mortgages are currently in foreclosure or >90 days delinquent?

US, 7.2%. Canada, 0.4%.

What gives? I thought those guys were socialist.

You're sure about that?
Actually the answer depends on where you're standing.

An entrepreneur would tell you that it's his customers who create the wealth.

And an economist would say that due to the miracles inherent in fractional reserve banking, the banks actually do appear to create quite a lot of wealth. If it weren't for them we'd just be passing our original grimy and crumpled dollar bills back and forth to one another. Or, as has been said, we'd be making our living by taking in one another's laundry.

I am sure.
You have claimed in the past that wealth is money so do you know what wealth really is?

And I do agree...
Roy,

The money deployed to save AIG, the banks and some of the non-banking financial institutions did the job and those programs were necessary.

However, the banks are not completely back or General Motors would have been able to roll over its debt instruments in a normal manner...rather than to have gone into default, bankruptcy and sucked up $50 billion more taxpayer money.

Now it looks very much like GM is returning to its old ways without anyone from the government in a position to make them do their jobs right or actually become a competitive car company. They dumped a lot of trade liabilities, bond holders got messed over and shareholders were really hurt too. But that 60% stake we are holding is not going to get us anything but more disappointments from those clowns.

Yeah...small business owners and entrepreneurs should be the entities promoted if we want the economy to recover to real growth. Let us have our own small banks, however, and we will take care of this ourselves without being underwritten by the government.

Why should ObamaGump bother to help small business owners?
"My personal opinion is that the money would have been better spent had they found a way to lend it directly to small, unincorporated business proprietors.."

...why bother, since they just hit them with a surtax to finance other people's health care?

Sometimes, I do envy the fantasy reality you live in, Roy. But only sometimes.

Then why did they have to hide their bailout of Goldman Sachs via AIG?
And why did they bail them out while letting their competitor, Lehman Bros. go down the tubes?

Yeah, 'necessary'...to help some cronies that is.

And I fault the Bushies even more than ObamaGump for this, just to be on the record.

"The economy is Obama's Katrina"

less government interference in housing
They don't have the mortgage interest deduction in their income tax code, for one thing. Frankly, I am not aware of any other major OECD nation other than the good ole US of A that does.

I also don't believe that they have their own versions of Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. Or, if they do, their equivalent doesn't dominate their mortgage industry like ours practically does.

Only for those of your ilk who are critical-thinking-challenged Roy
The common denominator in both cases is; some GOVAGs sitting in Washington took our money and gave it to people they chose.

They chose NOT to give to Lehman Brothers; chose to give to GS and now chose NOT to give to CIT
Again, those who are NOT systemic-thinking-challenged would notice that those sitting in Washington decide WHO to give OUR money.

I never would have suspected
What an interesting response! I had never in my wildest imaginings thought to link our home mortgage mess with the deductibility of mortgage interest. Please take me through the steps, as to how the one leads directly to the other. Intuitively, I don't get it.

Canada does have a variety of government programs that offer assistance to low-income home buyers.. and even renters.

http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/co/prfinas/

But nothing like a FRMC or FNMA. Still, I sense there's another, much more likely cause for our mess. A federally backed fund that insures or trades in mortgages is a useful tool. It's just that few other nations tolerate the massive levels of corruption ours does. Our politics have been corrupted by money.. and our money corrupted by politics. Canada, I believe, must just do a better job of keeping things honest.

Then there's the utter incompetence. Which we also tolerate at unacceptable levels. To have a delinquency rate of under one percent, I suspect Canada of being generally competent.

Those scoundrels!
"Again, those who are NOT systemic-thinking-challenged would notice that those sitting in Washington decide WHO to give OUR money."

And what would an ostensibly systemic-thinking-savvy federal government do? Give money away without deciding to whom it should go?

Would that be the better way to proceed?

Making credit markets work without liquidity
Marjon, there's one thing your Austrian mentors never admit.. and that's that the proliferation of air-money has indeed been responsible for the wealth we now enjoy.

If the Fed had never been born, we'd have been stuck with only the amount of money that existed in 1910.. and no means of creating any more of it.

Meanwhile the population has grown by a factor of six.. so each of us today would have been only 1/6 as wealthy as the average person was in 1910.

Tell me something that would convince a person of average intelligence this obvious fact isn't so. The fact is, in our system it's MONEY that makes more money.. and that lays the foundation for wealth creation. And if there had been no excess funds in circulation there would have been no lending. In otherwords we'd have been perpetually living in conditions where credit was nearly entirely frozen.

That is, UTTERLY frozen except for the occasional person who could lend his brother-in-law fifty until payday.

"You have claimed in the past that wealth is money so do you know what wealth really is?"

You weren't reading me accurately. Money is the soil. Wealth is the crop. You need a lot of good dirt to get a good yield.

Why are 12, quaisi private banks needed to create money?
Prior to 1912, money existed and economies grew.

I don't think fractional reserve banking was invented by the FED.

"To the extent that banks lend their own savings, or mobilize the savings of others, their activities are productive and unexceptionable. Even in our current commercial banking system, if I buy a $10,000 CD ("certificate of deposit") redeemable in six months, earning a certain fixed interest return, I am taking my savings and lending it to a bank, which in turn lends it out at a higher interest rate, the differential being the bank's earnings for the function of channeling savings into the hands of credit-worthy or productive borrowers. There is no problem with this process. '

"Hence, under free competition, and without government support and enforcement, there will only be limited scope for fractional-reserve counterfeiting. Banks could form cartels to prop each other up, but generally cartels on the market don't work well without government enforcement, without the government cracking down on competitors who insist on busting the cartel, in this case, forcing competing banks to pay up. '

"Central Banking began with the Bank of England in the 1690s, spread to the rest of the Western world in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and finally was imposed upon the United States by banking cartelists via the Federal Reserve System of 1913. "

"Thus, the Federal Reserve and other central banking systems act as giant government creators and enforcers of a banking cartel; the Fed bails out banks in trouble, and it centralizes and coordinates the banking system so that all the banks, whether the Chase Manhattan, or the Rothbard or Rockwell banks, can inflate together. Under free banking, one bank expanding beyond its fellows was in danger of imminent bankruptcy. Now, under the Fed, all banks can expand together and proportionately.
'

http://www.lewrockwell.com/rothbard/frb.html

"Marjon, there's one thing your Austrian mentors never admit.. and that's that the proliferation of air-money has indeed been responsible for the wealth we now enjoy'

The wealth we enjoy today has more to do with technology and productivity improvements than an inflated money supply.

There is nothing wrong with credit as long as there are real assets to support such credit.

Suspicions mounted very early on
"The money deployed to save AIG, the banks and some of the non-banking financial institutions did the job and those programs were necessary.

"However, the banks are not completely back or General Motors would have been able to roll over its debt instruments in a normal manner..."

I have a little bit of a problem with that.

It's true that stability returned, saving those financial institutions from collapse. But no strings were put on their use of the money.. so it was squirreled away rather than being lent out.

So all that money we lent did no work for us. And tell me this: was it of value to society to merely bail out institutions who had gotten themselves into trouble of their own free will? Or were those istitutions of value to society merely because of the work we wanted them to do?

I would have predicated any bailout money to be used strictly for the resumptions of norml business loans. NO buildup of reserve funds and NO extravagant salaries. The recipients could take it or leave it.

Neither would I have used any form of coercion.. that is, lending alike to those who did and did not need funds, and making their acceptance mandatory.

THAT was not just idiotic. That, plus the fact that the principal architects of the bailout just happened to be Goldman-Sachs alumni, leaves on odd taste in my mouth.

"Let us have our own small banks, however, and we will take care of this ourselves without being underwritten by the government."

I've always been happy with credit unions.. for every reason, categorically.

In fact...
...I'd even go as far on a limb to assert that the ONLY reason why fractional reserve banking and its exploding death by inflation has survived and even thrived for so long WAS BECAUSE of the rapidly expanding increase in wealth and GDP caused by productivity gains.

Historically, productivity gains were far lower over time and so the absurd conclusion of all fractional reserve banking experiments would last only a generation or two before collapsing on itself.

Roy in danger of losing his Progressive Bonafides! Read All About It!
"What an interesting response! I had never in my wildest imaginings thought to link our home mortgage mess with the deductibility of mortgage interest. Please take me through the steps, as to how the one leads directly to the other. Intuitively, I don't get it."

Most Americans don't. They think it makes all the world of economic sense when in fact it really doesn't.

But I am shocked at you, Roy. I expected more from someone who claims to be a true progressive.

And to really add insult to injury, The NY Times even figured out the problems with the mortgage interest deduction even though you haven't. My cat knows more than the NY Times does, Roy. Ouch!

http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/02/24/killing-or-maiming-a-sacred-cow-home-mortgage-deductions/?em

So... we agree again
One thing about that magical hocus, pocus, fractional reserve banking and the creation of E-Z credit by the Fed,is that it has resulted in a tremendously profitable economy. And it would hardly be a stretch to say that the fabulous gains it has caused are far greater than the relatively modest losses we may have sufered through inflation.

True, a dollar today is not a very big deal. A hundred of them are worth about what one was, back in the 1920s. But on the other hand, billionaires today are about as thick on the ground as millionaires were back then. So on balance, the economy has gained greatly through the employment of fiat money on a massive scale.

The systemic failures we see today are far less grave than they would have been back in 1907. What we're seeing is a short-cycling of funds from the top to the top, in a tight feedback, where the bottom is increasingly starved for funds and unable to "feed the dragon" by buying its output. So periodically it collapses.

All the steam goes out of the bubble and the economy founders. Then after a while it picks up again, all the money again gets traded around at the top and a fresh bubble builds. Then when we realize there's nothing of substance holding the economy up, it fizzles again.

It's not quite as regular as the sunspot cycle, but erupts every handful of years. Boom, bust, boom, bust. IMO, needs a tune up.

No, we don't
"One thing about that magical hocus, pocus, fractional reserve banking and the creation of E-Z credit by the Fed,is that it has resulted in a tremendously profitable economy."

there is no proof of that. And we don't agree. You just misinterpreted (and not for the first time) what I stated.

Our monetary system is like a Soviet Union in the financial world. It is designed to drain wealth, not create it.

"So on balance, the economy has gained greatly through the employment of fiat money on a massive scale."

Again, PROVE a direct cause/effect that inflationary, debt-based fiat money did any such thing?

Good luck with that.

It's IRRELEVANT whether Feds THINK before they give; it's not THEIR money to give in the first place
If YOU want to give your money, go ahead. I don’t think the Fed will object if send them a check.

“Our politics have been corrupted by money & our money corrupted by politics”; but Roy STILL wants
MORE money routed through the Political machine.

What to make of this madness?

What "of their own free will" you are talking of Roy? A banker has to bend to so many GOVAGS’ wills
“Paulson acknowledged in his testimony that he PRESSURED Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis to proceed with the deal despite Merrill's mounting financial losses. Paulson said he WARNED Lewis that Lewis might lose his job if he dropped the deal or tried to renegotiate because doing so would exhibit a "colossal lack of judgment."”

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Lawmakers-say-Paulson-kept-apf-4172060968.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=main&asset=&ccode=

So... the sky is blue
Answer: NO IT ISN'T!

I thought that would elicit a squawk from you. And indeed you've come through.

But what's this? You don't agree that fractional reserve banking, based on nearly unlimited credit emanating from our Federal Reserve system has brought about great prosperity?

Just what is it we've been living in over this past century? You don't call any of this prosperity? Don't you think if all credit had been constrained by the (quite arbitrary) need for someone to come up with actual bricks of gold the expansion of our industrial colossus would have been, well.. hampered?

It seems pretty obvious to me. Although I know you'll resist the thought til the end. It doesn't obey any of your laws.

So, is it pretty obvious to you that the Great Depression & today's recession are ALSO b'coz of FRL?
As also, the many mini crises in between and before and in the FUTURE?

FRB – Fractional Reserve Lending

Roy implies that China COULD NOT have become rich, WITHOUT killing 40 million of its citizens
Just because two things have happened contemporarily, DOES NOT mean that one is the cause of the other.

Hook, line and sinker
I hate to disillusion you, but those 'government agents' who have you so paranoid are actually agents of the banking industry.

You have things back asswards if you haven't noticed the government just got through handing out $700 billion of OUR money to a bunch of banks with no strings attached. And that the officers of those banks all cut checks for themselves to the tune of millions of dollars apiece.

Didn't notice that? That was awfully nice of the USG to do that, for a bunch of folks they pretended not to know intimately.

Now you can look up the members of both political parties, to see which banks gave them multimillion dollar political contributions. Because both parties have been in on the deal from the beginning.

Here's the choice we have
Yes, we do have a system that's complicated, inefficient, corrupt and controlled by the incompetent and the deceitful. But look at our other choice.

Our system now is full of checks and balances. Industry pits itself against the federal agencies. Congress, the executive branch and the courts all wrestle each other. The legal profession, the accountants and the insurance, medical and financial industries are all trying to beat us up and take our money. Our two political parties are perpetually duking it out. And in the middle, We the People are trying to make our voices heard. It's a free for all, with everyone vying for control.

Instead, we could have a one party system. There would be no distinction between the owners of industry and the organs of control: the government, the police, the military and the courts. They would rule us unopposed. That is, we could have fascism.

Which do you prefer? Once you've made your choice, go for it.

So disprove it
Perhaps you can explain to us how easy money, the grease of commerce, could have taken us to where we are today if no one could borrow unless he could find someone with gold in his pocket, to borrow FROM.

We hobbled along that way for centuries. And the rich men of Europe could be counted on the fingers of both hands. Today the path to (borrowed) wealth is easy to travel. It's the economist's dream: all you have to do is to POSIT a source of unlimited funding. And presto! It comes to pass.

The truly magical thing about it is that the only adverse consequence is a relatively trivial amount of inflation. And in a crisis, such as we have now, there's actual price DEflation.

It's quite a system. And it's all based on our ability to invent money as needed.

PROVE that unlimited credit from the Federal Reserve system has brought about great prosperty
You haven't and you can't.

Furthermore, you keep equating terms fractional reserve banking with fiat money and vice versa. They are two different things. You can have fractional reserve banking w/ or w/o fiat money. You can have it w/o a central bank and w/o a centrally issued currency.

You've never learned this. I doubt you never will. So, you keep quacking with your buzz words and thus make no sense to those of us who have bothered to learn it.

"You don't call any of this prosperity?"

Yes, with the 'consensus' of economists all agree on came about from greater productivity and that technological advancements were the prime impetus to that.

"Don't you think if all credit had been constrained by the (quite arbitrary) need for someone to come up with actual bricks of gold the expansionv of our industrial colossus would have been, well.. hampered?"

Nope, because unlike you I've studied monetary history. Britain was the first nation to industrialize and the first to establish the modern gold backed currency. The two went just dandy together.

We had an actual national debate over this back in the 1870s-1890s. If you doubt me, read William Jennings Bryant's "Cross of Gold" speech. Easy Money lost out. The Hard Money folks were proven correct by the economic data for the next 60 years and even afterwards.

That period includes your precious 1950s, Roy. We were operating under a gold standard during that entire time.

Britain didn't even abandon the gold standard during WWI despite enormous pressure from the Roys of the time. Why? Because by not doing so she was able to finance the war are very low interest rates (less than 2%) -- something she couldn't do during WWII because she abandoned the gold standard.

During WWII we didn't abandon it either despite increasing the money supply by huge amounts. In fact, our gold reserves increased dramatically.

"It seems pretty obvious to me."

Ok, show us the 'obvious' then. Show us step by step using data that directly correlates to the results you claim to have happened that supports your inaccurate view of fractional reserve banking and fiat currencies (in whatever combination of the two monetary paradigms you cook up, but keep the combination consistent, please).

SEMI-related to topic: How the mechanics of our monetary system dooms the Stimulus to HARM our econo
This article provides an excellent explanation of how the stimulus program actually SUCKS MONEY out of the productive sector of our economy, simply because of how the Fed handles the debt issues and the money collected from the issuing of said debt.

The Fed appears to be staffed entirely by Roys.

http://www.realclearmarkets.com/printpage/?url=http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2009/07/17/bleeding_the_economy_back_to_health_97315.html

So, are you confirming that the Chinese COULD NOT have become rich WITHOUT killing their citizens?
You made the connection between FRL and the wealth that has been created since. So, the onus is on YOU to PROVE direct causal link.

So, once AGAIN, why do you want to route MORE and MORE money through the political machine?
..

Merely ASSERTING that those are our ONLY choices is intellectual laziness, to be charitable
..

Good one...
I get the sense that they knew the Lehman Brothers default would generate the kind of crisis they needed to start regulating derivatives and put enough pressure on the system to force a rapid resolution of the CDO assets...rather than the slow death it had become, dragging down real estate and threatening the industrial companies...such as GM...as the system deleveraged.

But the domino effect surprised Paulson...he has now said as much. It turned out that the system was much more fragile than he understood, the economy was headed for structural collapse rather than a correction and the Lehman bankruptcy served as a trigger. Rather than getting it over with quickly so we could recover, he precipitated a rapid disintegration...financial anarchy, really.

He did understand how much was exposed in the near term and demanded that Congress give him the funds to backstop those immediate losses. Paulson immediately shifted its application to the system...much of it through AIG on September 16th (even before the TARP was authorized) the day after Lehman Brothers filed Chapter 11...but one such conduit was equivalent to any other because the institutions were so intimately interlocked. The tsunami of defaults had to be flattened before it got rolling. Goldman Sachs came out of this in the best shape because they were arguably the least exposed...unless AIG actually did fail to cover.

And that could not be allowed or the global economy would have simply ground to a halt as all the bonds out there would have suddenly been ininsured and everyone defaulted simultaneously because no one could underwrite new debt. The government is too small to guarantee all the paper out there and everyone knew that. The system itself had to be saved. It really was an event horizon moment.

If the US Treasury ever defaulted on its debt instruments because we could not roll them over, for example, then our fiat currency...the US dollar...would no longer be backed by anything. Insofar as the dollar is the reserve currency held by all the central banks all their money would be worthless too. There was just no way for Paulson to predict where the damage would stop.

We came close. Like with the Cuban Missile Crisis. We only realized some years later that we almost all died in 1962 before we ever saw another Christmas. 2008 was exactly like that.

Solid as The Rock
"We came close. Like with the Cuban Missile Crisis."

Yup, we dodged a bullet. That is, unless it's more like those accidents when you hit your head, get up and tell everyone "it's okay folks, I'm all right." Then the next day you sit down, say "Now I don't feel so good" and die.

"SR Rating, a Brazil-based firm, plans to downgrade U.S. bonds from AAA to AA. That's no cause for panic, but it is a cause for concern, and the markets evidently are feeling it."

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/The+price+that+U.S.+Treasury+bonds+command+on+the+market+plunged+in...-a0202564123

Heaven forbid this bad idea gains traction. There's not enough money in America to pay high rates on all the debt we owe.

It's their money
They were the ones who printed the stuff up. What do you expect me to do with it?

If we didn't use their money we'd have to carry around wheelbarrows full of potatos, or whatever we were using as a means of exchange. Maybe lumps of gold. Now wouldn't THAT make us all feel safe? We'd all have to carry little scales and vials of hydrochloric acid, just to make sure we got the correct change.

I like the convenience of using their fiat money.

Actually it IS their money
Pull out a bill and look at the signature on it. Mine all say 'Henry Paulson'.

We just get to borrow the stuff. They're the owners.

So, YOU do it. Why do you want to FORCE it on the rest, by giving your moral sanction?
..

Then WHY are you wasting YOUR time COMPLAINING how they SPEND their money Roy?
..

YOU choose to live here
Are you saying they're forcing you to live here, and take their money? Really?

What's stopping you from moving to Canada? They appear to have their economy under better control than we do. Why stay any longer? You're just making yourself miserable.

I help fund their endeavors..
.. so it's only natural that I have a voice in how the money gets spent.

You, on the other hand, just gripe about having to pay. So other than that, who requires your opinion?

It's MY democracy and I exercise it. Yes, there are a lot of things I'd like to change about my country. And unlike you, I'm an active participant in its functioning. So in fact I do get involved.

It's not just my country by birth. It's mine by choice. And any time I think it's beyond the abilities of its people to effect positive change, I can always go somewhere else.

Speaking of intellectual laziness..
You gave us a great setup line. I looked forward to opening up your message, to see what your third choice was.

Only you didn't have one. So here's your second chance.

The choices I offered were to either suffer the inefficiencies, the frustrations and the perplexities of democratic rule, or to succumb to one party rule, where we have no choice but to accede to the wishes of our unelected rulers.

And our third choice is......?

Prove it?
I'll be brief, as I'm heading out the door. The thing is not amenable to "proof".. as there's no way to conduct a controlled experiment, with another world in which there was no central bank designed to provide credit "as needed" as opposed to "as available".

In the world prior to 1913, all the money had been collected into the hands of a very few barons. And they disposed of it as they saw fit. If you wanted to start a new business, you had to take them on as a partner.

I trust you can see the problem here. Your idea, but very soon THEIR business. They were well on their way to owning everything.

The Fed was one obvious improvement in our economy, brought about by a small cabal of very bright bankers who wanted to democratise wealth to a greater degree by bringing it out from under the existing monopoly on money. It widened the game.

IRRELEVANT drivel to EVADE Roy. If it's THEIR money, why WASTE your time COMPLAINING?
..

So, it's NOT THEIR money but OURS Roy. If you want to give YOUR money, go ahead. But you’ve NO RIGHT
to FORCE me to part with MY MONEY. But that’s what you’re helping do, by giving your moral sanction to the policies that do EXACTLY the same thing.

Not that you don't know, still, here it is. To limit the GOVAGS to punishing Rights violators
And recognizing the fact that people have a Right to live WITHOUT being forced to do Good unto others.

Say Roy, don’t you feel AWKWARD defending something you KNOW to be NOT amenable for proof?
..

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