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Was Jefferson Right?

August 5th, 2008 | by Windspike |

Perhaps, given the mortgage mess, Jefferson was smarter than all of us put together:

I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.

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  1. 13 Responses to “Was Jefferson Right?”

  2. By admin on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    Wind - what’s the alternative to a Federal Reserve? Letting politicians set fiscal policy based on the whims of the electorate vs economic theory? We see how the politicians pander over every “crisis” with their combination of throw money, cut taxes and promise nirvana. Letting those guys set interests rates and such would be a disaster.

    If anything Wind you could argue it was the Fed becoming political with Alan Greenspan arguing for the tax cuts etc during Shrubs first term that has made this situation a disaster, not the Federal Reserve system itself. Had he followed his economics and not his politics many of today’s problems could have been ameliorated

  3. By Windspike on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    You may be correct Tom. The other question that comes to mind for me at this time, and I’m not the first to pose it, is why is it the the lenders and borrowers are getting substantial aid while the folks in New Orleans are still stuck with a post-disaster situation that hasn’t improved much at all. Could be Bush and his cronies are at fault in many ways that we don’t know given their tendency for secrecy over transparency.

  4. By Lisa on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    William Jefferson didn’t believe in banks either he just kept it in his his freezer.
    How does that guy still have his job anyway?
    I guess the “D” helps.

  5. By admin on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    He’s friends with Duke Cunningham, Tom Delay, Ted Stevens, etc etc.

  6. By Lisa on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    And these guys:

  7. By Lisa on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    He’s friends with Duke Cunningham, Tom Delay, Ted Stevens, etc etc.

    Who don’t have their jobs anymore. I guess it has something to do with the “R”

  8. By admin on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    Are you sure about that Lisa?

    Tom Delay quit because he was set to loose as much as anything. He didn’t get kicked out.

    Duke didn’t get kicked out, he was sent to jail.

    Ted still is the sitting Senator.

  9. By Windspike on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    Lisa, are you BWI (Blogging While Intoxicated)? If you weren’t you would notice that the quote is from Thomas Jefferson - you know, one of the “founding fathers”, not William Jefferson. Follow the links and you will see. Most certainly Jeffeson thought of himself as a Republican.

    As for your conversation about William Jefferson, it has no bearing on the post. Feel free to blog further about it on your own location, but until you are thinking more clearly, why don’t you blog elsewhere? All you are doing is embarrassing yourself here.

  10. By Lisa on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    I’m not embarrased I meant to be snide.
    And WS I didn’t say they got kicked out I said they don’t have their jobs anymore although I guess what Stevens did wasn’t as bad as what Jefferson did but the dems can’t wait for him to step down or at least they will probably force him to. That’s the only way they can get his seat.

  11. By Craig R. Harmon on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    I don’t get it. I admit this economic stuff is not my forte but, as far as I know, no private bank DOES issue money. Money is struck and printed and put into the economy by the treasury department of the federal government, no? So it IS, indirectly, in the hands of the people. The people elect their governing officials and they appoint/hire/set policy regarding when to print and issue money, how much to distribute, at what base rate interest it is lent, etc. I think Jefferson was right, I just don’t see what relevance this quote has to present day circumstances. What am I missing?

    Surely he did not mean that individuals, or even the people as a whole, should have direct control of when money is issued. Somebody help me get the point of the post, please.

  12. By Cranky Liberal on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply


    Actually he was talking about Hamilton’s idea of a federal reserve type bank, the very same as we have today. The treasury my print the money, but it is the role of the Fed to control the money supply. That’s what keeps us from printing up a trillion bucks to pay off China etc (yes that would wreck the economy etc). The Fed is an independent company so to speak and is not under the control of the President or Congress on a day to day basis.

  13. By Craig R. Harmon on Aug 5, 2008 | Reply

    I see. Thanks. I get it now, I think.

  14. By Windspike on Aug 6, 2008 | Reply

    I believe, but am not a historian by any stretch, that the point Jefferson was trying to make was during conversations that led up to the development of the Fed and the desire for printed paper money rather than silver coins. There was a time when the Fed didn’t exist and people traded for goods or used actual gold or silver coins here in the USA. Legal tender wasn’t around and “in god we trust” wasn’t printed on every bill. There was a time when I think states printed their own bills and also there were private banks printing their own bills as well. I don’t think Jefferson saw that as good.

    the point that got me to post this and ask the question was the thrust about the control of currency being in the hand so banks controlling inflation and deflation, and thereby spurring corporations (read independent mortgage companies) that will then in turn bankrupt their children (read foreclosed upon folk).

    I know it was a stretch and I didn’t quite know what to think of the quote, but did think it had some relevancy and was germane to what was happening today. Of course, I could be way off, but I think Jefferson was particularly astute on many things, not the least of which was this caution.

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