Thursday, October 9, 2008

Jackson and the bankers

I spent this morning clicking links in Encyclopaedia Brittanica. I used to revere Brittanica but no longer. The complete absence of an entry for David Sassoon says all there is that needs to be said. But it's not completely worthless. In leaping about from James Madison, to the war of 1812, to Andrew Jackson, I came upon Jackson's farewell speech. Via the net, I've read a great deal about the history of banking but somehow I never came across this before. I post it here for those who, like me, have never encountered it.

It's extraordinary. And long though this post is, I've only posted about half of it. The opening paras that I've omitted concern Jackson's dealings with the Indians. I will happily admit that Jackson was no paragon of virtue. On the subject of race there's nothing good to be said for the fellow. The latter paras I've lopped off because they're dull and concern the re-arming of the navy. However the vast bulk of his address is spooky. His chief topic is tax and control of the money supply which he discusses with a perspicacity and frankness that is now impossible. On this topic the man was something near a seer.

PS. As if any further proof was needed as to who owns the media, wonder at the subsequent complete absence of any public discussion that resembles what Jackson says here. The bankers knew how to ensure that Jackson's urging of 'eternal vigilance' would come to nought. They would control the media. And sure enough, here we are today wall to wall in a media discussion of the banking 'crisis' and all we get are clueless, drivel-spouting popinjays and flibbertigibbets. Not one of them could hold a candle to Jackson.

"There is, perhaps, no one of the powers conferred on the federal government so liable to abuse as the taxing power. The most productive and convenient sources of revenue were necessarily given to it, that it might be able to perform the important duties imposed upon it; and the taxes which it lays upon commerce being concealed from the real payer in the price of the article, they do not so readily attract the attention of the people as smaller sums demanded from them directly by the tax gatherer. But the tax imposed on goods enhances by so much the price of the commodity to the consumer; and, as many of these duties are imposed on articles of necessity which are daily used by the great body of the people, the money raised by these imposts is drawn from their pockets.

Congress has no right, under the Constitution, to take money from the people unless it is required to execute some one of the specific powers entrusted to the government; and if they raise more than is necessary for such purposes, it is an abuse of the power of taxation and unjust and oppressive. It may, indeed, happen that the revenue will sometimes exceed the amount anticipated when the taxes were laid. When, however, this is ascertained, it is easy to reduce them; and, in such a case, it is unquestionably the duty of the government to reduce them, for no circumstances can justify it in assuming a power not given to it by the Constitution nor in taking away the money of the people when it is not needed for the legitimate wants of the government.

Plain as these principles appear to be, you will yet find that there is a constant effort to induce the general government to go beyond the limits of its taxing power and to impose unnecessary burdens upon the people. Many powerful interests are continually at work to procure heavy duties on commerce and to swell the revenue beyond the real necessities of the public service; and the country has already felt the injurious effects of their combined influence. They succeeded in obtaining a tariff of duties bearing most oppressively on the agricultural and laboring classes of society and producing a revenue that could not be usefully employed within the range of the powers conferred upon Congress; and, in order to fasten upon the people this unjust and unequal system of taxation, extravagant schemes of internal improvement were got up in various quarters to squander the money and to purchase support. Thus, one unconstitutional measure was intended to be upheld by another, and the abuse of the power of taxation was to be maintained by usurping the power of expending the money in internal improvements.

You cannot have forgotten the severe and doubtful struggle through which we passed when the Executive Department of the government, by its veto, endeavored to arrest this prodigal scheme of injustice and to bring back the legislation of Congress to the boundaries prescribed by the Constitution. The good sense and practical judgment of the people, when the subject was brought before them, sustained the course of the executive; and this plan of unconstitutional expenditure for the purpose of corrupt influence is, I trust, finally overthrown.

The result of this decision has been felt in the rapid extinguishment of the public debt and the large accumulation of a surplus in the treasury, notwithstanding the tariff was reduced and is now very far below the amount originally contemplated by its advocates. But, rely upon it, the design to collect an extravagant revenue and to burden you with taxes beyond the economical wants of the government is not yet abandoned. The various interests which have combined together to impose a heavy tariff and to produce an overflowing treasury are too strong and have too much at stake to surrender the contest. The corporations and wealthy individuals who are engaged in large manufacturing establishments desire a high tariff to increase their gains. Designing politicians will support it to conciliate their favor and to obtain the means of profuse expenditure for the purpose of purchasing influence in other quarters; and since the people have decided that the federal government cannot be permitted to employ its income in internal improvements, efforts will be made to seduce and mislead the citizens of the several states by holding out to them the deceitful prospect of benefits to be derived from a surplus revenue collected by the general government and annually divided among the states. And if, encouraged by these fallacious hopes, the states should disregard the principles of economy which ought to characterize every republican government and should indulge in lavish expenditures exceeding their resources, they will, before long, find themselves oppressed with debts which they are unable to pay, and the temptation will become irresistible to support high tariff in order to obtain a surplus for distribution.

Do not allow yourselves, my fellow citizens, to be misled on this subject. The federal government cannot collect a surplus for such purposes without violating the principles of the Constitution and assuming powers which have not been granted. It is, moreover, a system of injustice, and, if persisted in, will inevitably lead to corruption and must end in ruin. The surplus revenue will be drawn from the pockets of the people, from the farmer, the mechanic, and the laboring classes of society; but who will receive it when distributed among the states, where it is to be disposed of by leading state politicians who have friends to favor and political partisans to gratify? It will certainly not be returned to those who paid it and who have most need of it and are honestly entitled to it. There is but one safe rule, and that is to confine the general government rigidly within the sphere of its appropriate duties. It has no power to raise a revenue or impose taxes except for the purposes enumerated in the Constitution; and if its income is found to exceed these wants, it should be forthwith reduced, and the burdens of the people so far lightened.

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 the 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 cannot 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 cannot combine for the purpose 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 of the Bank of the United States was obtained from Congress, it perfected the schemes of the paper system and gave its advocates the position they have struggled to obtain from the commencement of the federal government down 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 money 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 cannot 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 directed 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 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, the 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 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 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 exercise 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 associates, monopoly and exclusive privileges, have already struck their roots 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."


Anonymous said...

And 171 years later, there we stand -- yet again.

Jackson is one of those historical enigmas, at once capable of such speeches and at the same time a highly regarded Freemason and all that jazz. Such conflicting evidence makes for a challenging assessment, and I'm still undecided after many years of wondering.

Either way, it just goes to show you who's been "winning the war" all along, despite throwing the occasional battle by way of keeping up appearances.

Remember, in addition to every valid point you've just read from Old Hickory about the never-ending lobbying, the powers that he speaks of have a centuries-old history of funding BOTH sides of every major (and most minor) conflict(s).

Not only do they always come out the winner, they can also "steer" the general course of events via their powerful grip upon the purse strings of the "developed" nation(s).

In other words, "plus ca change, plus ce la meme chose", or "the more things change, the more they stay the same".

I've long wondered where I would be right now if I'd made one or two key choices in my life differently. As one of those "Top 1%" types according to the system and the various tests it ran at me over the years, I fit within the outlines of an ideal candidate for the role of intellectual footsoldier and servant of power. Or a rebel leader.

Lucky for me, my parents weren't Monarchs, I never attended daycare, I dodged a big bullet turning down a guaranteed slot at Annapolis (and beyond!) and also happen to possess an independent streak best measured using latitude and longitude.

The choices I've made along the way, and the ridicule (of sorts) that I've absorbed as a "smart one" who raises a near-constant middle finger in the general direction of authority, have cost me the modest fortune that my younger brother has amassed -- I can still face my conscience. I begin to think he no longer has one.

Naturally, my also very well-to-do brother-in-law, who worships at the same capitalist altar, feels that his younger sister married the wrong brother. He has even been so crass as to say so right in front of me. They now operate a two-man mutual admiration society, visiting each other and enjoying their favorite pretense together: that either of them are even remotely important, above and beyond their roles as handmaidens of capital.

While I struggle away converting the wife's ancestral family farm, but will probably end up the bro-in-law's gardener -- since the family seems loathe to reward all my/our hard work here in the country with anything but scorn and backhanded compliments.

After all, money is a far more important measure of a man than his morality, or so it seems among nearly all the individuals I know in this world -- despite all the supposed intellect they possess. That I demonstrate no desire to be rich and powerful, just happy, creative, in control of my own destiny and well-fed, is my undoing.

Thankfully, I'm also persistent and stubborn -- and suspect I will outlast them all, since all this time spent in self-study and the advancement of my soul has shown me enough of the future they have built to know that they'll all be iatrogenic victims long before my organic ass becomes just so much more compost...

the Silverfish said...

The Democratic and Republican Party Conventions have been the focal point of much of American media these days…but why?

Given that the media adheres to public want why do these fake forays that appeal to emotional faith, that ask for glamour and glitz to be the focal points, that rely not on understanding but on rage, tears and personal tastes mean so much to so many? The dichotomy of American politics is a meaningless split, but the underlying factions that clammer around the glamour and glitz is not meaningless: it defines the American social and political landscape.
That is to say, we as a society become defined by whatever emotional plea wins out. The other side is no better. Their claim is based on what they define as "freedom" which has nothing to do with individuality or human dignity. They rage about the necessity of moral distinctions being based on an immoral and absolute system of laws that are both meaningless and detrimental, or about short-sighted capitalism defined not by free trade but by giving the good ol' boys the upper hand and disregarding the rest. Emotional pleas are pathetic enough but defining a country by emotionally charged factions is downright idiotic.

The Democrats: having become a listless bunch of duck-eyed, new-age altruists and psychologists see the world in terms of a new order that will never work. The party is no longer the invention of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, individualism and rational thought, but has now been reinvented by "victims" and psychologists.
Its "victims" inevitably include those that hold the belief that society owes them something, sorry-eyed with their hands out for a "donation". Angry special interest groups who cannot see that they are guilty of acting in the very way that they claim is unjust; to them retribution is never enough. Only revenge and total absolution can quench their selfish demands. "Victims" of all ilk rush into the wide-open democratic house passing the welcome arms of the glazed-eyed therapists who defend the moral of it with their meaningless claptrap. "We owe the poor and the downtrodden" goes their mantra while the basis of personal responsibility is eroded away. The Democratic Party is no more than the "something for nothing" politic which is both immoral and impossible. But it is this very attitude that those hazed and confused constituents adhere to: there has to be a way and it is "our" responsibility to help everyone no matter that cost, moral or economic.

The Republicans: mean-spirited, religious fanatics who prefer gated communities locking out undesirables and any real answers to the real problems of our society; hypocrites and thieves who have what they want and adhere to their own new world order defined their own selfish motivation: whatever helps them and theirs. Created out of anti-slave activists it now is defined by moral-slave adherents: the religious right and evangelicals of the Christian cult. The irony does not end there however. They promote brainwashing the nation, the idea that educating the public is simply another capital investment to be made by anyone who has enough money and Christian drive. Being over-run by multi-billionaires and corporate interests, it is in their best interest to keep the public ignorant and enslaved.

The Republican Party is nothing more than a new American monarchy that preaches individual freedoms while defining those freedoms as a commodity that can be bought and sold by the highest bidder. Money and religion run free in the Republican household because God sanctions the morality of the rich while condemning the poverty of the others. The new Republican is nothing more than a moronic call for religious morality coupled with corporate welfare and tax breaks for the rich.

The Democratic and Republican party is not the new politic in which America finds itself. The gash between the parties is evident but the no-man's land is not simply fine line: it is a large expanse filled with apathy and ignorance. The new politic is not defined by the emotionally charged and the blindly dogmatic as it would seem to be. Neither is the new politic defined by the mass of Americans: they don't even bother to vote. The new politic is a blind machine fueled by emotion and led by the lost. The new politic is no longer simply political, it is moral, it is personal, it is driven by the desires of each and every one of us and no one all at the same time. Because most of the public defines and accepts its morality by nothing more than tradition or by what it has been taught by either parents or politicians it is unconsciously willing to follow anything or anyone that it perceives to be an authority. It does not have the ability to critically analyze nor does it have the capacity to understand that it is being bamboozled which is why apathy is the only alternative. But apathy is no better than acceptance of anything over nothing.

There is no conspiracy here, other than that of the religious wish to overtake the world (one which is as old as religion itself). There are two machines at work here: selfish short-sighted desire and massive apathy. The new politic is a recipe for disaster because of these two systems. First, it is impossible to come to any universal moral ideal given that the motivation is a selfish one. By its very nature, morality is a compromise between freedom, law and understanding. Without law we are incapable of being free. Freedom, in terms of humanity, is not defined by the simple law of nature. Human freedom is defined by the protections that we create (laws) and the understanding that the freedom we desire is only accessible by accepting those laws.
If we cannot understand these concepts we cannot follow the laws set forth and therefore cannot act in any moral fashion. We must first understand, then create, then accept. None of this is possible as long as the leaders of this nation turn to the extreme factions, as long as they bow before selfish and self-centered screamers of individual rights defined as whatever special interest the loudest mouth may have. None of this is possible as long as the mass of Americans are either too apathetic or too ignorant to bother get involved by thinking for themselves.

In order for a great concept such as the United States of America to work, individuals must first realize and accept that their personal problems are not the responsibility of the state or the nation. They must realize that simply because they "feel" that certain issues are of utmost importance does not mean that they are of utmost importance. Secondly, all of us need to realize that no authority can define how we ought to think or believe, unless we understand why we ought to think or believe. This is the crux of the religious as well as the political problem. Thirdly, we all need to realize the importance of self-responsibility and the poisonous nature of altruistic laws. We owe nothing to anyone, but we cannot expect to be owed anything simply on the basis of our existence. Finally without intellect we are lost. Without the ability and motivation to think critically about our own moral distinctions as well as that of others, we have only one law to fall back on: the law of nature. The new politic is full of posers and pedants. It is choking with personal fervor and self-importance. It is drowning in its own self-importance and a personal psychology that tries and fails to define any usable morality. The new politic is the new poison: the new drug, the new religion. It is something not to be scoffed at but watched as a prey watches a predator.

kikz said...

he, among others knew even then.

when i lived in new orleans, i'd slap a kiss on his statue every time i walked thru jackson sq.

ever studied up on tom paine and the anti- federalist papers?

or the 'real lincoln' that was to come after?
this is remedial history 101, cuz you didn't learn it in school unless you went for a poli sci major...and then doubtful.

the whig repugs/federalists have plotted and redeployed this from almost the inception of this country... lincoln was the robber barons' legal council before taking office as potus, and he followed suit w/his central bank greenbacks, imposed conscription on immigrants stepping off the boat, the importation of hessian mercks, and robbery at gunpoint of southern tariffs; declaring open warfare on civilian populations... suspending habeas corpus, shuttering the free press and imprisoning all strata of dissenters, including a governor, and only post emancipatoin proclamation freed the slaves in nonsecessionist (read northern) states.

black slavery issue aside...

at least the confederacy's money was back'd by gold.

a great place to start on the lincoln/central bank timeline is to google 'dilorenzo's archive' on lew rockwell. you'll learn more about jackson and his fight to kill the federal reserve(central banks) and lincoln and his constitutional tryannies b4/during/aftr our civil war.

dilorenzo is prof of economics @loyola in maryland... i'm no fan of the rc but this cat tells is like it is on the false religion and cult that is lincoln/whig-repug/federalists.

we didn't learn our true history, and are now repeating it.
the deist and masonic founders (no angels) are rolling in their graves, howling at what we have thru our slumber allowed to come to pass........

thanks noby for allowing me to rant.. and also for posting the jackson info.

Anonymous said...

Hi ya nobody-

I only had time to skim your latest piece. Will digets it later. Thanks for the kind words, my far-away friend.


nobody said...

Hey Gene, nice to see you up and at 'em.

And Mir, you are my spooky severed twin mate. My immediate younger brother started as a banker/economist and ended up as some variety of consultant. He's told me what he does for a living but it made no sense to me. In fact, what with Anthony Robbins as his messiah, nothing he says makes any sense to me. His wife on the other hand remained human in spite of having initially been in on the Anthony Robbins gig (they met there). Anyway her family is a bunch of Lebanese Muslims and I wonder if they don't prefer my company to his, ha ha. But I don't see them too often because frankly, I'd rather eat my own head than hang out with my brother.

Thanks kikz, good stuff. It has to be said that the founders of America were really something. They just don't make 'em like that anymore. Well that's not quite true. People aren't intrinsically stupider, they're just made that way via crap education and the TV. It's not called the idiot box for nothing. Anyway I'll check that stuff out.

Speaking of stupidness, there was a lot in that Silv. (Oops, this isn't a comment on you mate, just the subject matter of your piece). Thanks for posting it, it was a big effort. You won't object if I read it again, I'm sure. You got my neurons firing. I want to put your piece through the grinder of the continuum and see what I make of it. I'll pop back later.

the Silverfish said...

No problem, I just hate it when you get my neurons firing, I can't remember writing that, Happens with Narcolepsy sometimes. Autonomic responses and all that crap, sometimes the brain kicks in at the wrong times.

notamobster said...

miraculix, the man of spirit and purpose will outlast the whores of greed. Always have...always will. If not in you, in one you have inspired.

The hydra that is the two party system in our country serves only to divide and obfuscate the treachery perpetrated by the bankers. They've got players on both teams. One game, two teams. Youdon't have to like your candidate, you've just got to hate the other guy more...whether he's coming to "kill your babies and take away Christmas" or force you to follow his god and destroy the environment. The same fool will be elected. Granted, he may have some pet projects that you agree with, and he may not... You do have to keep the people divided, after all.
SF - wow...

kikz - It's so refreshing to see that there are other people who see through the facade that has
been built historically around Lincoln. States rights ended with Lincoln. We ceased being a republic under the "hero" that is Abe Lincoln. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on Jim Henson's Ronald Reagan.

noby, thanks for posting this, friend. The collective intellect of your regular readers is astounding. I love the fact that an idea can be discussed, without anyone trying to discount the idea wholecloth, because the other views of the one who opined happens to be controversial or immoral (re: Jackson/indians, slaves, etc)

It's amazing to me that the founders, while not 'paragons of virtue' by any stretch, could see the future of these United States so clearly.

T. Jefferson: " the central bank is the greatest enemy to our Constitutional form of government..."

J. Madison: "if tyranny and oppression come to this land, it'll be under the guise of fighting a foreign enemy" (brown colored boogey man)

So much for the clarion call for eternal vigilence, huh?

kikz said...

nota 'I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on Jim Henson's Ronald Reagan.'



i remb growin up in coastal ms.. when the election came up.. most around us were repugs.. and thought regan was jc come again...

we all know how that turned out.

nota.. haven't i read that you're in s. looziana?

notamobster said...

well, kikz - yes. I'm in s. lousy anus. Does this >:) mean you weren't/aren't a fan? haha. Though he's touted by the fear-mongering greed whores as a bastion of conservatism, he was nothing more than slight-of-hand. Watch the puppet while we play the grand chessgame.

kikz said...


politically, as far as i know... i'm the first in the family to realize that it's a scrimmage game.

shit.. only wish i'd of realized back in my 20's instead of my late 30's.

i worked in state gov then and knew frm a girlfriend who employed w/emer mgmt, and in the course of her training had been inside weather mt and i understood that there were other deep layers,

but, i still believed what most americans naively did, having been 'nursed on the koolaid' frm the cradle, i had no idea.

i never had or cultivated an interest in politics until georgie's first reign. i detested his daddy...and remember vividly 20+yrs ago.. b4 i understood the family's history/financial background... poppy telling all us good chillunz, that we'd well be served to sever our dependence on foreign oil, thousand points of light, yadaX3. my god.. i think back to my naivete, as well as most every joe6pak walking... and shudder.

i was already stumbling up the path with my remedial studies, working my way back thru history searching for answers..... shortly post 911, cuz i knew somethin was fuk'd up...when out drinkin' w/my then vp husb and some of his work mates, one of his managers, a retired spook half/friend of ours, became intrigued by my line of thought that afternoon, on the utter bullshit factor that norad somehow had been caught w/it's pants down. so anyway..
he turned to me and smiled.. and said...
go research the CFR, and TLC(trilateral comm). so.. those 6 letters, led me thru the looking glass darkly, down the rabbit warren.

and whatta long strange horror filled trip it's been. alice in wonderland.

to that point.. the most painful thing i'd endured....finding out 99/9% of everything i'd ever thought i'd known about my country and gov was a blanant fuking institutionalized lie. not only recently.. but from its inception. i'd seen shadows of and there...but the true extent, the machiavellian scope...

it was an 'initiation'.

death, trials in the underworld, and resurrection....

some positives though..
growin up southern one becomes accustomed to ridicule frm many, especially by our more enlightened northern brethren...taught in school to accept the lie; that we alone were responsible in entirety for black slavery, and by virtue of our birth traitors to the nation, we should be grateful and beholden - that we were not exterminated en masse, by the god lincoln and his minion generals.

so yea, reclaiming pieces of my true heritage and history has been cathartic.

sorry, i'm rambling..
to end.. at least my kids won't be blind until later life. just gotta make sure they pass it all along, and never forget what it took mama so many painful years to uncover. if they can live thru what i fear is to come.... they can and will...

to borrow a CSN phrase..

teach their children well.

Anonymous said...

Oh Noby, this was a most informative piece. It put me into a whole mindset and confirms a long held suspicion that greed and manipulation are flaws hard wired into the human species. Maybe we are here in life to resolve that flaw?
Thank you sincerely, beautiful work, N.

Penny said...

I am going to be totally off topic, as this post made me suffer ADS.

My mind is occupied with so much other stuff, the election here has me flummoxed.

Tomorrow is election day, and I still haven't even made up my mind who to vote for.

If I vote the lesser of the two evils, I am still voting for evil.
That bothers me!

I am in the process of trying to save my own meagre pension savings, shifting into safer places and then keeping the fingers crossed.

Hard working people who saved there own money do not deserve this shit.

I would be lyin if I said, I wasn't worried.

Been working in the yard, soon it will be winter here, and the garden has to be put to bed, amongst other projects that I am trying to get done before the weather turns.

I was talking with the other half, about how we can put a chicken coop behind out fabulous shed if necessary, and they can eat the bugs in the yard and the garden and other stuff of course.

Wonder how the old cat will like that?

Maybe in a way , I am more hopeful then I actually think I am.

I guess the fact, that I am thinking of the future, and prepping for it , is a good thing.

Last year, almost at this time, I wasn't so certain I would live to see this year come in.

So for me, despite all that is going on, and my fretting, and my working away, I guess, I am hopeful.

Thanks for that post, and I will read it.

sorry nobody :(

nobody said...

Nice of you folks to keep popping in. I'm in a bit of a flat patch at the moment. My head is buzzing but perhaps it's buzzing too much to calm down and sit at a keyboard and focus. But this sustained conversation gees me up. I'll put in a sesh at the keyboard shortly and finish this thing that's been sitting on my desktop for the last couple of days.

I don't know about hard-wired Nina. I'd just say that the software programming never changes. I view humans as blank slates. They can be made into selfish gits or they can be made into selfless carers. Frankly I think that humans, all things being equal, or more inclined to the latter. Darwin would be forced to concur, I reckon.

Certainly this individual or that one will naturally incline to greater or lesser selfishness/selflessness, but on a societal basis anything is possible. It depends on who holds the reins of power and what suits them. As Buddhism spread to Asia, Emperors, courts and entire peoples became Buddhist and stayed that way for generations. Even in the West, whilst I'd have to give it astronomically long odds, this is possible.

And Kikz, I grooved on that story. You met a spook who told you of the CFR and the TLC? Talk about meeting O'Brien. Have you had further conversations with him? I'd be curious to hear about it.

And Pen, sorry mate. It can be arduous reading 19th prose. Having read and re-read Patrick O'Brian for so many years now I find I can slip into fairly easily.

Otherwise, chickens are brilliant. The pair I looked after for a month were really quite affectionate creatures. But give them the run of the lawn and they will trash it. Scratch and peck is pretty much all they got. Still, I'd rather have chooks than a lawn, ha ha.

kikz said...

we'd known the 'retired' spook for years.. at that time.

i think he and hubs still yak occasionally, but we haven't seen him socially in years.

always the gentleman, even when schnockered...gentleman jim.

and no, once i figured out who he ...had been.... and what he would always be.. as
there is no such thing as an X spook... i decided that it was the safer thing to keep it light and airy, and simply thank'd him for the 'keys to the kingdom'.
i didn't want to pry, asking him the gazillion questions i had/have.. and egotistically supposing that my inquisitiveness may at some future date, somehow garner the unwanted attentions of his old outfit or their kin. i have no idea in my deluded mind how... but being as spooked of spooks as i am... and having some vague idea of the warring politico/ideolog factions....and that gd mantra.. w/us or against us... by the neocon/repugs at that time.......basically rendered me a silent observer in jim's company when talk turned to intl. intrique cloaks/daggers. i let that big boar, open its purse and hand out pearls.

it was nothing gentleman jim ever said, mind ya.. it was just.. i thought it the prudent thing to be/do. always best to stay in the treeline.

...funny, how 'here' can be wrongly construed as 'in the treeline' but in something entirely different.

the mind bogglez.... :)

Penny said...

kikz when you say the 'real lincoln'

are you referring to the book of that name?

The Real Lincoln
Thomas Dilorenzo

Meria has been talking it up
as another illusion shattering book.

Like everything you thought you knew about Lincoln was bogus, which I am getting the impression is an opionion you may agree with?

I looked him up and he has done alot of articles on lewrockwell

Just wondering?

nobody said...

Thanks Kikz,

I can understand that. But I do love hearing spook stories.

I know an an artist whose wife was (probably still is) a diplomat. They used to get great postings. And he was telling of another dipo guy they knew who was a spook. My friend's wife knew and told her husband (who told me natch - mind you, I have no idea who this guy was). Anyway the point of the story was that this guy's wife didn't know he was a spook. Everyone in the embassy knew (and probably their spouses too) but not her. For mine, this is exquisitely fucked.

Kevenj said...


Freakin excellent post.

Came over in the truck from Tony & Les's place. This is exactly what the meat of the situation is:Ergo the ones that control the money supply.
Sounds so materialistic, but "money" is and has intrinsic value over and above simple mall shopping.

Funny how often my fellow neighborhood (Neo-conservative Pro-McCain) bible thumper/homeschoolers endlessly bring up "the founding fathers" bullshit and forget or ignor apt items such as this.

Btw-if you're going on a short GA tour you might want to tag a little known place in Elbert County:
"The American Stonehenge".
Absolutely.... beautiful.

kikz said...

y, penn :)

i've never read dilorenzo's book, can't afford it.....but i've read his archives.. so i guess that's as close as i can get...

i've read lewrockwell for years..
lt. col. karen kwiatkowski has some great articles on there as well.

and another coupla pen pals of mine contribute there also.. tom chartier.. and mike in tokyo.

fred reed/butler shaffer, i adore....

at the opposite end of the spectrum....gary north... ollie's unc.. eyeroll!

lotza different and good work there. the austrian/mises school would seem to have a better idea as to economics than our present model. i'm no expert... in any sense.

oh and penn.. you said you were voting.. canadian i'm guessing? hubs is frm toronto.

if it mattered i'd vote too. but.. our electoral college elects the electors who elect the pres.. so if the 'party' vote wasn't large enuff in the primary... tuff noogiez... the pres ele.. is pure theatre.

but the sad fukin fact is that 99.9% of UMmerikanz have no idea that is the case.
(crimson blush of shame)

kikz said...

yep noby..

that would be an odd life.. both sides.. hubs/wifey.

her not aware of the proximity of danger.. and his double existence.


of course.. the plame affair.. was quite different. i hope someday... that the responsible parties swing for it.. no telling how many 'assets' were 'liquidated' worldwide by her outing. and the worst of it.. her real job was to track illegal deals on nuke materials. i can not envision a more treasonable offense than her outing.

kikz said...

oh and.. more frm my library of alexandria bookmarks...required reading section...
waistbow :)

gustavas myers:
more on the tyrant lincoln; his insider trading inre the transcontinental rr/rothschild bagmen (robber barons)and northern canal sys..........

against the backdrop of the nasty underbelly of 'the great american/canadian fortunes'.. presidential included... and the supreme court and its true function.

ye godz bless yamaguchy for copy/upload of this and many other hard to find tomes... including writings of eustace mullins.

the gustavas myers book; in entirety and indexed:


to get to yamaguchy's homepage...just delete all, after the .com

so much good reading there, you'll need to bookmark it!

if you appreciate his efforts, drop him a line. you might even mention, kikz sent ya :) he might remb me :)

(headscratch... i've probably given y'all this link b4.. but it's definitely worth a relink :)

just c/p each line of the link into the browser, added onto the end of the former..
my efforts at a single hilight c/p fail.

Penny said...

well I read it, all.

And the more things change, the more they stay the same.

(oops sorry miraculix, I was reading through your response as I typed this and saw, no surprise, you said those same words)

The moneyed classes, of course wish to control the unmoneyed masses.

How else to keep them subordinate, and themselves elevated?
How else to profit, in every way possible?

It was a good speech though, interesting and eloquent.

notamobster said...

kikz: "always best to stay in the treeline." (:

kind of reminds me of the Python film "And now for something completely different" - there's a segment: "how best to not be seen" (don't stand up...hillarious stuff if you get a chance to watch)

Sorry, but I am ever the sucker for Python humor.

nobody said...

Python! Did somebody say Python? Somebody stop me before I quote again!!! NaM, I'll send you an attachment you may groove on.

Thanks for stopping in KJ. And they got a Stonehenge in Georgia? So what's in Salisbury Plain? It's not some fibreglass fake is it? Is there no end to the wickedness of these people?!

Thanks Kikz. I'll go check that out. That guy is like the anti-Ken Burns I take it, ha ha.

Otherwise, folks sorry for the slack and idleness thing. But we worshippers of Aergia are required to make sacrifices and pay obeisance. But I'm a whisker away from a piece about smoking mirrors. I don't know if anyone will groove on it, but then, I never do really. Ciao.

Anonymous said...

Number One: The Larch.

"But we know he's hiding behind the middle Bush..."

<<< Boom >>>

@ N.a.Mob

"miraculix, the man of spirit and purpose will outlast the whores of greed. Always have...always will. If not in you, in one you have inspired."

Thank you very much for reminding me of the obvious. One tends to elide such permanent wisdom when under steady pressure to "produce" in the material realm; especially when one's heart and soul are permanent residents of a creative world. I suppose if I was to add any single characteristic to the short life list I posted, serving as an inspiration is surely the top candidate.

@ Kikz

Did I mention that I have several hectare of mixed forests that I am tending to? Edge of the forest? I'm already there, coppicing and thinning and stacking -- and keeping a weather eye to the sky... =)

@ Penny

It's one of those quotes that have become so well-worn as to feel like a comfy old pair of brown shoes. In other words, a cliche. Which I tend to avoid like bubonic plague, only it's one of my personal favorites because it's so resonantly and obviously true in every fiber and thread of existence Lachesis and her sisters weave about our daily existence.

So please, say what you will; I never called "dibs" after all... =)

And "eternal vigilance"?

Awful hard to maintain in the face of limited life spans and generational gaps, though the former need not snuff the flame and the latter is largely just cheesy psychological scaffolding constructed around our human "coming of age" cycle.

That "eternal vigilance" is what we are all actually up against, we the useless eaters, only adds to the irony.

kikz said...


those would be the GA guidestones right?
the backstory on them is beyond interesting..

ever read what's on em:)?

far as i know, there are others scattered round.


Penny said...

hey kikz;

Hubby is from TO?
Does he miss it?

I like TO, to visit, but not to live, great restaurants, different shopping, but entirely to busy.

yah, I voted in Canada, does it matter?

Who knows?

This election just had me in knots, I am not kidding, this is a person who cares too much, I think!

I held my nose and voted, not for the person I wanted, but for the lesser of two evils.(first time ever)

When I left the poll, I told my hubby, I wanted to clean my mouth, scrape my tongue or something!

I hate our system, "first past the post", it is bullshit, we have five parties here, and the first past the post, serves the two big ones, likely as your electoral college system does.

Aaargh even thinking of it right now, just annoys me.

wrt the book on Lincoln:
Meria is going to be interviewing the author, so I am looking forward to that, as the book sounds like an eye-opener.
She is one of the most openly cynical persons, on line. And, yet, she was taken back by what was in this book, another listener told her about it apparently.

I haven't checked out the lewrockwell stuff yet, I have been wrapped in this election.

notamobster said...

well, I've given it much... long and careful thought; and it's goingt to have to be medical experiments for the lot of ya!

you want to see them swing? Like in a park? Wink. Wink. Nudge.Nudge.

Sorry- Noby! I've been having an awful time as of late. My brain seems to have regained a clarity and thirst for information which I haven't known for many a year (just in the past few weeks). For someone reason, It's made me go through the old Python collection.

Kevenj said...


Not exactly a 'fiberglass fake' of the REAL stonehenge, but it cost millions to build- back in the early 1990's!.
Please don't take my word for it...
When you access the REAL pics and info-notice that everything sound real sweet and nice just like an ole beatles song, but don't ignore the FIRST point...that says it all.
Peace be to you,


1.Maintain humanity under five hundred million in perpetual balance with nature.
2.Guide reproduction wisely, improving fitness and diversity.
3.Unite humanity with a living new language.
4.Rule passion, faith, tradition, and all things with tempered reason.
5.Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
6.Let all nations rule internally, resolving external disputes in a world court.
7.Avoid petty laws an useless officials.
Balance personal rights with social duties.
8.Prize truth, beauty, love...seeking harmony with the infinite.
9.Be not a cancer on earth...leave room for nature...

(I screwed up on the #'s, and I'm too tired to go back again and figure it out.)

Anonymous said...

Dear Mister Nobody

I just thought I'd drop this in to let you see how we (LP/ALP) are handling your investment in Australia.
Wayne Swan- the truth

The Honourable
Malcolm Turnbull
BA, LLB (Syd), BCL(Hons) (Oxon), MP
Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia
Future Prime Minister of Australia
Friend and Confidante of The Right Honourable, The Prime Minister of Australia Kevin Rudd
P.S. And before you correct me I do know how to spell and I'm not giving anything away!

nobody said...

Thanks M, I thought Mr. Nesmitt was on to a winner there with 'not-standing-up' bit but never mind. (Sorry folks, Python arcana). And yeah, it's one of those funny phrases isn't it? 'Eternal vigilance'. To be honest I've got it in the 'to-be-avoided' box. It's too fraught.

But speaking of python, instead of us as medical experiments, couldn't we merely cut whomever's balls off?

And thanks PM, er... Mal, I have enjoyed watching you and your tag-team partner this week. Excellent cooperation. I'm sure our rulers are pleased.

kikz said...

hey pen:)

ya..hubs frm etobicoke.
sort of misses it but not, still has family there. but, he'd rather be on the emerald coast of fla, the panhandle.. or somewhere in the carib. i tend to agree >:)

elections.. eye cripez.. at least w/parlimentary poop, y'all can throw a big ol non confidence vote and get the bastards out...not stuck for 4 yrs... just keep an eye out, i hope CAN isn't using those gd blackbox ele voting machines or counters...beyond hackable.

my last masturbatory trip to the polls was bush/kerry. i might bother, just to write in ron paul as a protest this time round >:) but i doubt it.

yup nota..
i want there to be so much swingin'(for i guess what we could call AR2.0) that benny goodman is played.
and... i want it broadcast live in livid vivid screamin broadband across the entire globe.

and yea, kev... it is disquieting to think we are so far beyond that to be unrecoverable by any genius/benevolent scientific solution to date.

it is horrific to realize even the plans for depop thought up by the machiavellian masters have not stemmed the tide so far.

can't even depend on the 'ol black death' for help anymore. too many of us made it thru the 1918flu.

somebody's got it covered i'm sure. prob weaponized 1918flu & smallpox combo.. or some such hideous maismaic spectre. hemmoragic fever is quick and dirty.

i've read...the zionists have feverishly been workin on race specific pathogens...guess we'll see...

i know it won't be a nuke, or rather blanket nukes.. micro, sure..... the warring factions want the realestate. rape/pillage of resources under nuke hazmat conditions is expensive.

this time it'll probably be, old reapers in new rags, disease and starvation, brought to you by the MIComplex.

and the stones.. well, they're for whomever makes it through, or whomever visits on an interstellar archeao-fieldtrip.

python..there's one on on palin lately.. i'll try ta find the link.. >:)

Anonymous said...

I prefer the shorter version

"If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and the corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered"

Anonymous said...

i never knew of this Jackson speech before. i was aware that he vetoed the Bank of the United States and wrote a veto message conveying similar thinking.

When i first found out about that veto, and his enmity toward the bankers, i wondered why in the world is it Jackson's picture that's on the 20$ bill (surely the key denomination for cash transactions) when his desire was to prevent and/or destroy the whole money structure, of which the 20$ bill is a main emblem.

Then i realized that the banking people had to have put Jackson's head on the 20 on purpose, as a sort of trophy, don't you think?

ellis t

nobody said...

Thanks folks,

Yep Paul, you have to admire the word perfect succinctness of it. And then there's this - "... You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out, and by the grace of 
the Eternal God, will rout you out". Wottaguy!

And hey Ellis, how you doing? I wondered about that myself and came to much the same conclusion you did. They stuck his head on a note and the note said 'property of the Federal Reserve'.

kikz said...


man o... i wish i had more than an allegorical treeline to blend into....

you're forethought & preparation has served you well, i'd bet. :)

Anonymous said...

send me e-mail, i lost your address
by the W, the Confederacy's money was NOT backed by gold, it was pure paper; the problem was that they allowed even municipalities to issue notes

Beard, 'The Rise of American Civilization'
Volume 1, chapter 12

After the war on the Bank commenced, however, both he and his colleagues laid hold of the various weapons at hand. From that time forward, the allegation that members of Congress received retainers from the Bank certainly rested on a substantial basis. In any case its mightiest spokesman in the Senate, Daniel Webster, was on the payroll of the corporation, a fact made clear in distant days by the publication of Biddle's letters and papers. In those documents it is recorded that, two weeks after the opening of a congressional session in which a battle royal was to be fought over its charter, Webster wrote to Biddle, shrewdly conveying the information that he had declined to take a case against the Bank and adding with charming frankness: “I believe my retainer has not been renewed or refreshed as usual. If it be wished that my relation to the bank should be continued, it may be well to send me the usual retainers.”

Equally well established now is the charge that the Bank contracted its loans for the purpose of producing distress and breaking the back of the political opposition. Beyond all question, in the midst of the contest a term of financial stringency was deliberately inflicted on the country; Biddle, sure of his ground, declaring to the head of the Boston branch that "nothing but the evidence of suffering abroad will produce any effect in Congress." Webster himself, convinced that pressure on the populace would be useful, wrote to Biddle that "this discipline, it appears to me, must have very great effects on the general question of rechartering the Bank."

In fact, the private correspondence of the period now open to the student shows that the supporters and beneficiaries of the Bank had effected a strong union of forces for the purpose of controlling a large section of the press, dictating to politicians, frightening indifferent business men, and defying Jackson and his masses. "This worthy President," laughed Biddle, "thinks that because he has scalped Indians and imprisoned Judges, he is to have his way with the Bank. He is mistaken."