by Michael Snyder, The Economic Collapse Blog:
Central banking has truly taken over the entire planet. At this point, the only major nation on the globe that does not have a central bank is North Korea. Yes, there are some small island countries such as the Federated States of Micronesia that do not have a central bank, but even if you count them, more than 99.9% of the population of the world still lives in a country that has a central bank. So how has this happened? How have we gotten the entire planet to agree that central banking is the best system? Did the people of the world willingly choose this? Of course not. To my knowledge, there has never been a single vote where the people of a nation have willingly chosen to establish a central bank. Instead, what has happened is that central banks have been imposed on all of us. All over the world, people have been told that monetary issues are “too important” to be subject to politics, and that the only solution is to have a group of unelected, unaccountable bankers control those things for us.
So precisely what does a central bank do?
You would be surprised at how few people can actually answer that question accurately. The following is how Wikipedia describes what a central bank does…
A central bank, reserve bank, or monetary authority is an institution that manages a state’s currency, money supply, and interest rates. Central banks also usually oversee the commercial banking system of their respective countries. In contrast to a commercial bank, a central bank possesses a monopoly on increasing the monetary base in the state, and usually also prints the national currency, which usually serves as the state’s legal tender. Examples include the European Central Bank (ECB), the Bank of England, the Federal Reserve of the United States and the People’s Bank of China.
In the United States, we are told that we have a free market system. But in a true free market system, market forces would determine what interest rates are. We wouldn’t need anyone to “set interest rates” for us.
And why have we given a private banking cartel (the Federal Reserve) the authority to create and manage our money supply? The U.S. Constitution specifically delegates that authority to Congress.
It is not as if we actually need the Federal Reserve. In fact, the greatest period of economic growth in U.S. history happened during the decades before the Federal Reserve was created.
Unfortunately, a little over 100 years ago our leaders decided that it would be best to turn over our financial future to a newly created private banking cartel that was designed by very powerful Wall Street interests. Since that time, the value of our currency has diminished by more than 96 percent and our national debt has gotten more than 5000 times larger.
But despite all of the problems, the vast majority of Democrats and the vast majority of Republicans are not even willing to consider slightly curtailing the immense power of the Federal Reserve. And the idea of getting rid of the Fed altogether is tantamount to blasphemy to most of our politicians.
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