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Wednesday, June 16, 2010


 The year was 1946. It marked the inauguration of the last High in America. A Crisis had begun abruptly with the 1929 Black Tuesday stock-market crash.  After a three-year financial free fall, the ensuing Great Depression prompted FDR’s New Deal social welfare programs, an enormous extension of government, and expectations for a revitalization of our national community.  After the attack on Pearl Harbor, America planned, mobilized, and manufactured for conflict on a level that made possible the colossal D-Day invasion. 


Two years later, the Crisis mood eased with America’s unexpectedly painless demobilization. Director Frank Capra produced and directed one of the most beloved movies of all-time in 1946 – It’s a Wonderful Life. The movie is a beloved Christmas classic. It is a story of hope, redemption, belief in the goodness of man, and belief in God. If you are down in the dumps or depressed, watch this movie and your spirits will be lifted. What is less evident, but more pertinent today, is the distinction between the America that we were versus the America we could have become. The America we did not want to become was controlled and manipulated by an evil, soul-less banker. It was a dark foreboding Gomorrah-like world of bars, strip joints, casinos and tenement housing. The citizens were angry, rude and mistrustful. In the movie, George Bailey, played by Jimmy Stewart, is able to see how his small town would have turned out if he had never been born. In the real world, people and countries don’t have an opportunity to see how their decisions will affect the future. The American people and their elected leaders have made some dreadful decisions since 1946 that have drained the life out of the American Dream. God and morality have lost their meaning and importance in modern America. When the distinction between good and evil is blurred by the media and intellectuals, the degradation of society and morality leads to a downward death spiral.


We’ve made fateful choices in the last century that have methodically stolen the spirit of the American Dream. Opportunity for each according to their ability or achievement has been replaced by - from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. The twist to the Communist Manifesto is that those with ability who worked hard have had their wealth redistributed to the rich and the poor. The 1% ruling elite have utilized their positions of power, with the help of their benefactor - the Federal Reserve, to amass 40% of all the wealth in the country. The bottom 50% of Americans on the income scale, pay no income taxes and receive the majority of entitlement payments. That leaves the middle class on a permanent treadmill trying to achieve the American Dream, but never reaching the destination.


The loss of the American Dream can be traced to 1913. The creation of the Federal Reserve by powerful banking interests and corrupt politicians marked the beginning of the end for the U.S. dollar. The implementation of a personal income tax opened Pandora’s Box and unleashed incalculable horrors upon the American public. The top marginal tax rate in 1913 was 7%. It reached 94% by 1944. The tax code has grown from 400 pages in 1913 to 67,500 pages today. Politicians have exploited the tax code to compensate political contributors and punish their enemies. The creation of a fiat currency being printed by a Central Bank resulting in a 95% loss in purchasing power and ever increasing tax burdens to support welfare program redistribution have devastated the middle class. With these monetary support mechanisms in place, politicians have been able to promise voters more and more benefits without bothering about future consequences.


The American people have voted for themselves more and more goodies. They have ignored their obligation to the past and the future. The Founding Fathers created an imperfect Republic. Ben Franklin knew its future depended upon people administering it well. Unborn future generations are dependent on their parents and grandparents to make choices that do not burden them with an anchor of unbearable debt. We have failed our brave forefathers and have sold our unborn into slavery. The people have been corrupted and the country is on course towards despotism. Today’s “progressives” in the media and government have manipulated the fact that the Founders did not want a national religion to be misrepresented as keeping religion out of America. The Founders were religious men. They believed religion and morality were vital to the country being administered in a moral ethical way and guided by a code of conduct. As God, religion and morality have been denigrated by those in power we have moved further and further from the letter and spirit of the Constitution. Only a people with a strong moral backbone can be trusted to honor the Constitution.


It’s a Wonderful Life teaches us that family, friendship, and virtue are the true definitions of wealth. It also broaches the subject of small town America where small business owners and hard working Americans were treated with respect by small town bankers and valued as lifelong customers. The movie clearly distinguishes between the small town banker who believes that every townsperson deserved a chance at a better life and the big time banker who treated people like cattle and only cared about how much profit he could generate by keeping those people under his thumb. Mr. Potter represents every evil banker that has ever walked this earth and taken advantage of the poor and middle class to enrich himself. George Bailey represents the kind of banker that built this country by making loans to his fellow hard working Americans. This was a very early picture of how allowing a single all-powerful corporate banker to exercise monopolistic control would ultimately destroy the community and enslave the citizens. The scene when Potter offers the depositors 50 cents on the dollar for their shares of Bailey Building & Loan is representative of how thug like corporate bankers will resort to anything in order to put small banks out of business and steal the deposits of average Americans.


The point of the movie, that money won’t buy happiness and that good works are more important than consumerism, was cast aside by America with assistance from the bankers who control the Federal Reserve. The result is a country of bureaucrats, paper pushers, and government lackeys, producing nothing and borrowing at ever increasing amounts in order to live the good life today with no thought about tomorrow. The message of materialism has been preached by the holy trinity of bankers, government, and corporate media. If Americans understood the concept of systematic inflation, as practiced by the Federal Reserve, they would comprehend how the American Dream has been stolen by a narrow subset of privileged elite.


These people live in penthouses, are chauffeured to their nightly galas, summer in the Hamptons, have prominent politicians over for dinner, and direct the largest banks and corporations in the world. Do you think they care about the George Baileys of the world? These are the people who expounded about the benefits of a global marketplace. Who received the benefits? Global markets weren’t free. The admired U.S. corporate titans like General Electric, Intel, Apple, and IBM shipped the $30 an hour American jobs to China where they only needed to pay $1 per hour. Corporations are designed for one purpose – to make money.


When corporations and the people who run them are given unfettered control over society, money making and debt proliferation to support the money making become the only goals. Corporate media and corporate manipulated government officials then hammer the message that being rich is a noble goal. Mega-banks must be saved, we are told, because our way of life is dependent upon these modern day Potters.


The wealthy elite keep the masses distracted with electronic gadgets that never leave our hands, new and improved five bladed razors, $5 cups of flavored foamy hot water, sexcapades of golfers, color coded terrorist warnings, and 600 HDTV channels with nothing worth watching. While Boobus Americanus was pre-occupied, the bankers stole their wallets. If it seems like we have a financial crisis every five years which “threatens the financial system”, you are right. Have the wealthy bankers created these crisis episodes on purpose? Fifteen years ago, the combined assets of our six biggest banks totaled 17% of our GDP. By 2006, that number was 55%. Right now, it stands at 63%. The big four have 50% of the market for mortgages and 67% of the market for credit cards. Five banks have over 95% of the market for over-the-counter derivatives. Three U.S. banks have over 40% of the global market for stock underwriting. Does it make sense that after every crisis precipitated by the Federal Reserve and the mega banks that control it, the Fed accumulates more power (new Consumer Protection Agency) and the top 5 or 6 banks accumulate more assets as hundreds of small banks go out of business?


Frank Capra thought a suburban oasis, as reflected in Bailey Park, would protect Americans from Henry’s Potter’s nightmare world. He was wrong. America’s suburban sprawl has actually encouraged the onset of Pottersville.  The suburbanization of America corroded much of what remained of community values.  Americans live next door to people for five years without saying more than hello. This reality made it effortless for Americans to turn inward and disregard all but their own self interest. Instead of community identity flowing smoothly from the communication of citizens and neighbors, as in Bedford Falls, suburbia took on the personality of a sprawling concrete Mecca of four lane highways, regional malls, power centers, strip centers and stand alone 350,000 sq ft palaces of consumerism. The average family of 2.5 Americans huddles in their 3,500 square foot brick and vinyl castle on ¼ acre of chemical treated land during the week and crosses the drawbridge on the weekends in their $40,000 leased SUV chariot to venture out to the jousting matches at the local mall, charging the entertainment on a 4 inch sliver of plastic.


In the end, America is left to extend and pretend. With a National Debt of $12.4 trillion and $4.4 billion of debt being added to that number every day, no amount of obfuscation by the Federal Reserve, elite bankers and corrupt politicians will successfully camouflage the road to ruin we are on. Is it too late to turn back? Until Americans experience another dose of horrific pain inflicted upon them by the ruling elite, they will not learn the simple lesson:


“You can’t always get what you want,

but you get what you need.”


- The Rolling Stones (Let It Bleed, 1969)


Only then will they have a chance to be the richest man in town, like George Bailey.

Click here to email your elected representatives.


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