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    glossolalia..., 2008-10-20 13:35:47 | Main | notes from the frontlines scare me..., 2008-10-21 02:47:45


    I've been getting directed to watch one of any number of rather scratchy looking documentaries on the Federal Reserve this year, and I suppose I understand why. For whatever reason they all look like they were made for an early 80s PBS educational program, with archaic video toaster effects over blue screens and chintzy synth music introducing what promises to be a very exciting topic.

    They remind me of this early 80s PBS program hosted by Milton Friedman, with bonus introductory remarks by noted monetary expert Arnold Schwarzenegger. Friedman lectures us on the miracle of Hong Kong's free markets and wondrous prosperity, all the while obfuscating - just as one example - the vast, communist plot lurking behind the scenes of the Hong Kong economy: the thoroughly "socialized" healthcare system they inherited from their British masters.

    But we can take Milton more or less at his dishonest best without complaint, after all a lie of omission is no lie at all when in service of that Greater Sweatshop in the Sky.

    Back on topic, I complained to a friend not long ago:

    There's about a fucking billion videos out there from the larouchies, the john birchers, and von mises institute, or some bedazzling array of their ilk that go on at length about the federal reserve, to hilariously dry effect, until, somewhere along the line, say 45 minutes in, some completely wackjob conspiracy comes jumping out of the box.

    Usually you know you're in for a fun ride just from the guest list. "Masters of the Universe" prominently features Ezra-Pound-hanger-on and uncommitted lunatic Eustace Mullins. "Fiat Empire" brings us the informed views of Edwin Vieira and, even more impressively, G. Edward Griffin, whose most notable claim to a bare modicum of sanity is that he didn't lead a radical splinter group off the John Birch Society, preferring instead to remain a lifetime leader and stick out the hard times. Eventually, in each, some nefarious plot is unfolded that leaves you scratching your head at how it ever fit in the packaging.

    But the latest monetary docudrama beats the 45 minute rule by a mile. "Money Masters" seems to consider itself a pure history, and introduces the seemingly ungoogleable Henry Pasquet and Larry Bates for expert testimony. Six minutes in we get a real earful:

    LARRY BATES: So you had 3 members of the senate, according to the senate journal, were present on that day, December the 23rd, 1913. And they passed the Federal Reserve Act in the senate on an unanimous consent voice vote. There was no objection. Had there been one person there to object, and say in contest, the absence of a quorum, than it would not have passed.

    This is perhaps the most bizarre and extreme version of this particular conspiracy theory I have ever heard. You can start with Wikipedia and learn the vote was 43 yay to 25 nay with 27 absent, a good quorum and a neat legal package. Wikipedia is of course a tool of the International Banking Cartel, so we must dig deeper. We could go to historical record, and find that the 1914 National Bank News confirms the vote. To give Larry the benefit of the doubt we don't trust this clearly biased source at all, and suppose that they're part of the conspiracy, so we seek out an honest theorist of the New World Order, which confirms the vote. They've gotten to them too! What about someone who isn't afraid to shine the light of truth on the faces of the wicked Illuminati? They too confirm the vote! Oh no! This means that either everybody but Larry Bates has been lobotomized by the International Banking Cartel, or Larry Bates is a plumb fucking nutter.

    My personal suspicion is that Larry has been passing the bong around Baltimore. Incidentally, the producers of "Money Masters" claim to have the ringing endorsement of Uncle Milty his very self, for of all things, "persistence and attention to detail".

    I don't begrudge anybody becoming a gold bug after simply looking up "fractional reserve banking" and "fiat currency" on Wikipedia, and if you know someone who insists on stuffing mattresses with cash maybe you should introduce them to a post-1933 basis for end-times preparation, but it's been 35 years since we - and by extension most everybody else - abandoned the gold standard altogether. Nobody starting from the premise that that's a shocking revelation should be paid the curtsey of being taken seriously. It was announced on national TV, afterall:

    Notice he never shows his hand to the camera. That's to hide the Masonic ring.

:: posted by buermann @ 2008-10-20 17:06:40 CST | link

    go ahead, express that vague notion

    your turing test:

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