Source: www.theeconomiccollapseblog.com | Original Post Date: March 30, 2011 –
Most Americans do not understand what the Federal Reserve is or why it is at the heart of our economic problems. When Americans get into discussions about the economy, most of them still blame either the Democrats or the Republicans for inflation, for the housing crash, for our rampant unemployment and for the national debt. But the truth is that the institution with the most power over our economic system is the Federal Reserve. So exactly what is the Federal Reserve? Most people would say that it is an agency of the federal government. But that is absolutely not true. In fact, the Federal Reserve itself has argued in court that it is not an agency of the federal government. Rather, the Federal Reserve is a privately-owned banking cartel that has been given a perpetual monopoly over our monetary system by the U.S. Congress. This privately-owned central bank has been destroying the value of the U.S. dollar for decades, it has run our economy into the ground and it has driven the U.S. government to the brink of bankruptcy. The Federal Reserve operates in great secrecy, it has never been subjected to a comprehensive audit and it is not accountable to the American people. Yet the decisions that the Federal Reserve makes have a dramatic impact on the lives of every single American citizen.
If you really want to understand what is causing our economic problems, it is absolutely crucial that you understand exactly what the Federal Reserve system is and how it is systematically destroying our economy. Once you understand the truth about the Federal Reserve, you will view economic issues a whole lot differently.
The following are 19 reasons why the Federal Reserve is at the very heart of our economic problems….
#1 The Federal Reserve system is a debt-based financial system.
The way our system is designed, normally no money comes into existence without more debt being created.
But this creates a huge problem, because when a new dollar is created, the interest owed to the banking system on that dollar is not also created at the same time.
Therefore, the amount money that is created is not equal to the larger amount of debt that is also created.
This is a Ponzi scheme that is designed to drain wealth from the American people and transfer it to the banking system.
Today, the amount of debt in our economic system is far, far, far greater than the total amount of money.
The only way to keep the game going is to create even more money which creates even more debt.
#2 The Federal Reserve and the bankers have a monopoly on the creation of this debt-based money.
In the United States today, the only people that can create money are the bankers.
You cannot create money.
You would go to jail if you tried.
Even the U.S. government cannot create money.
Although the U.S. Constitution specifically gives Congress the power to create money, the U.S. Congress has given that power to the Federal Reserve and to the banking system.
This gives them an enormous amount of power.
So how does money creation actually work?
Most Americans don’t understand this.
As I have written about previously, the way our system is designed is that all money is supposed to originally come into existence as government debt….
When the government wants more money, the U.S. government swaps U.S. Treasury bonds for “Federal Reserve notes”, thus creating more government debt. Usually the money isn’t even printed up – most of the time it is just electronically credited to the government. The Federal Reserve creates these “Federal Reserve notes” out of thin air. These Federal Reserve notes are backed by nothing and have no intrinsic value of their own.
The Federal Reserve then sells these U.S. Treasury bonds to investors, other nations (such as China) or sometimes they “sell” them back to themselves. In fact, the Federal Reserve has been gobbling up a whole lot of U.S. Treasuries lately. Some refer to this as “monetizing the debt”, but that is not quite an accurate statement.
When the Federal Reserve creates money this way, it does not also create the money to pay the interest on the debt that has been created. Eventually this puts pressure on the U.S. government to borrow even more money to keep the game going. So what this creates is a spiral where the U.S. government must keep borrowing increasingly larger amounts of money, where the money supply is endlessly expanding and where the value of the U.S. dollar is destined to continue going down forever.
Once “Federal Reserve Notes” are in circulation, there is another way that money is created.
It is called “fractional reserve lending”.
Once you or I deposit money into a bank, the bank is only required to keep a very small amount of it actually in the bank. The rest of it the bank can loan out to others (at interest of course). This process can be repeated over and over and over, creating more money and an even larger amount of debt.
But the important part to take away from all this is that normally money is only created when debt is created, and the amount of debt to be paid back is always larger than the amount of money created.
This entire system is designed to drain our wealth and to put it into the hands of the bankers.
#3 The power of money creation and debt creation is in the hands of private individuals – not the government.
The Federal Reserve claims that it is an “entity within the government, having both public purposes and private aspects.”
That sounds so reasonable, but the truth is that the Federal Reserve is a legalized banking cartel that is privately-owned.
In fact, the Federal Reserve is about as “federal” as Federal Express is.
In defending itself against a Bloomberg request for information under the Freedom of Information Act, the Federal Reserve objected by declaring that it was “not an agency” of the U.S. government and therefore it was not subject to the Freedom of Information Act. It is kind of funny how Fed officials are always talking about how important their “independence” is, but whenever anyone starts criticizing them for being private they start stressing their ties with the government.
So who owns the Federal Reserve?
As the Federal Reserve’s own website describes, it is the member banks that own it….
The twelve regional Federal Reserve Banks, which were established by Congress as the operating arms of the nation’s central banking system, are organized much like private corporations–possibly leading to some confusion about “ownership.” For example, the Reserve Banks issue shares of stock to member banks. However, owning Reserve Bank stock is quite different from owning stock in a private company. The Reserve Banks are not operated for profit, and ownership of a certain amount of stock is, by law, a condition of membership in the System. The stock may not be sold, traded, or pledged as security for a loan; dividends are, by law, 6 percent per year.
In particular, as we will see below, the banks of the New York Federal Reserve have the most influence over the system.
So who owns the member banks?
Well, when you trace the ownership of the member banks to the very top you find that the international banking elite are very strongly represented.
#4 The Federal Reserve itself is not much of a profit-making institution. Rather, it is a tool that enables others to make obscene amounts of money.
There are many that think of the Federal Reserve as an evil profit-making machine. But the truth is that the Fed doesn’t make that much money. Rather, the system was set up so that others could make an obscene amount of money from U.S. government debt.
Many of those opposed to the Federal Reserve point to the record $80.9 billion in profits that the Federal Reserve made last year as evidence that they are robbing the American people blind. But then those defending the Federal Reserve will point out that the Fed returned $78.4 billion to the U.S. Treasury.
In the end, those numbers are not nearly as important as the hundreds of billions of dollars in interest that are made off of U.S. government debt each year.
If the U.S. government had been issuing debt-free money all this time, the U.S. government would likely not be spending one penny on interest payments. Instead, the U.S. government spent over 413 billion dollars on interest on the national debt during fiscal 2010. This is money that belonged to U.S. taxpayers that was transferred to the U.S. government which in turn was transferred to wealthy international bankers and other foreign governments.
This is where the magic of the Federal Reserve system is. It is in getting the U.S. government enslaved to debt and using that debt to transfer hundreds of billions of dollars of our wealth into the hands of others.
As interest rates go up, this phenomenon is going to become even more brutal. Right now it is being projected that the U.S. government will be paying 900 billion dollars just in interest on the national debt by the year 2019.
As you fill out your tax return this year, just keep in mind that vast quantities of our money is going to pay interest on debt that the U.S. government never needed to become enslaved to.
There are some very happy people out there that are becoming fabulously wealthy at our expense.
What a system, eh?
#5 The Federal Reserve is a perpetual debt machine.
As mentioned above, the U.S. government is enslaved to debt.
So how did it get enslaved?
Well, instead of printing up and spending the money that it needs, the U.S. government borrows it through the Federal Reserve system at interest.
In fact, as noted above, the U.S. government cannot create a single new dollar without borrowing it.
But each new dollar that the U.S. government borrows creates more than a dollar of new debt.
As a result, the government eventually has to collect more in taxes than what it has borrowed.
This phenomenon creates an endless debt spiral.
And is that not what we have in the United States today? In fact, you see this in almost every nation on earth where a similar central banking system has been established.
Did you know that the U.S. national debt is more than 5,000 times larger than it was 100 years ago?
That’s right – back in 1910, prior to the passage of the Federal Reserve Act, the national debt was only about $2.6 billion.
The only way that the U.S. government can inject more money into the economy is by going into more debt. But when new government debt is created, the amount of money to pay the interest on that debt is not also created. In this way, it was intended by the international bankers that U.S. government debt would expand indefinitely and the U.S. money supply would also expand indefinitely. In the process, the international bankers would become insanely wealthy by lending money to the U.S. government.
However, things did not have to turn out this way.
If the Federal Reserve had never been created, and the U.S. government had been issuing debt-free currency all this time, it is entirely conceivable that we would have absolutely no federal government debt at this point.
Unfortunately, we are now trapped in a debt-based system.
The U.S. national debt simply cannot ever be paid off. U.S. government debt has been mathematically designed to expand forever. It is a trap from which there is no escape.
Sadly, we have now gotten to a terminal phase of the debt spiral. The Congressional Budget Office is projecting that U.S. government debt held by the public will reach a staggering 716 percent of GDP by the year 2080. Remember when I used the term “debt spiral” earlier? This is what a debt spiral looks like….
Read the rest here: http://collectivelyconscious.net/articles/19-reasons-why-the-federal-reserve-is-at-the-heart-of-our-economic-problems/