||This article appears in the February 20, 2009 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Ben Franklin Was Correct:
A Republic, If We Can Keep It
by John Hoefle
[PDF version of this article]
Feb. 13The great American patriot Benjamin Franklin was asked, upon his emergence from the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787, what form of government the United States was going to have. Franklin answered succinctly, "A Republic, if you can keep it."
Franklin knew that keeping the new nation a republic would be difficult, because he understood the enemies it faced, and the horrors those enemies were willing to unleash to stop the United States from succeeding in the mission upon which it had embarked. Our enemies, the oligarchical families of the Anglo-Dutch Liberal system, responded as Franklin knew they would, but, despite everything they threw at us, we survived, and thrived, becoming the most productive nation the world had ever known. In our darkest moments, great leaders emerged to rally the population and lead the nation forward: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, and others, such as Alexander Hamilton, who designed the credit system which lay at the heart of our success.
Friedrich Schiller once remarked, of a similar crisis for humanity, that a great moment had found a little people. Look around you today. Where are the great leaders? Where are the appeals to reason, to put the welfare of the nation and its people ahead of personal gain, to work together in the name of a national mission? Such appeals have been made, but they have largely been drowned out by littleness, by mindless partisan bickering, unconscionable greed, and outright criminality. If we are to survive this crisis, we must rise above such pettiness and work together to take our nation back from these fools.
Our nation is bankrupt. Our banking system is bankrupt, and we do not produce enough wealth in our physical economy to stop the deterioration of the productive apparatus which provides us with the necessities of life, much less cover the enormous debts we have incurred in recent decades. The same is true for the world as a whole: It is all bankrupt.
We must start by admitting that truth; and that the economic policies we have adopted, since President Nixon broke the Bretton Woods fixed-exchange-rate system in 1971, have failed. Since then, virtually everything we have done has been wrong. We took down our industrial production, shutting down our productive base, and putting our skilled workforce out on the street. We outsourced that production to the cheapest labor we could find. We turned the most productive workforce in the world into paper-pushers, retail clerks, burger flippers, and worse. We adopted the view that paying people a decent wage was something we could not afford to do, when in truth it is something we must do, if we are survive. We deregulated our banking system, giving the most crooked among us the advantage over honest citizens. Worst of all, we adopted the oligarchical view that people are cattle, to be herded and culled, turning our back on Franklin's view that it is the people, with their creativity, and willingness to work together for the betterment of all, that is our true source of strength.
Now some words for some of our in-name-only leaders in Washington. To the Republicans who seem to be intent on blocking any change by the Obama Administration, stop being so damned small-minded: Your policies have destroyed the nation, and if you would spend half the effort trying to figure out where you went wrong as you do kissing the asses of the rich, you might actually be able to rise above your uselessness. To the Democrats: It is past time to throw out Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House, and to quit listening to the likes of George Soros and Felix Rohatyn. The whole pack represent the oligarchical system we fought our Revolution to escape. Ditch them now, so we can start rebuilding.
To the speculators of Wall Street and beyond, your policies have bankrupted your own institutions and the nation, and you are not entitled to one penny of bailout money. We care not about your demands, as you have no right to complain. You are bankrupt and we intend to shut you down. We will do quite well without you, and you should consider yourselves extremely fortunate if you escape going to jail. You should just go away, quietly, and let us clean up your mess.
The LaRouche Approach
Lyndon LaRouche stressed, in his Feb. 11 webcast, that the American people are outraged at this crisis, and fed up with a government that seems to care more about protecting the financier class than it does about protecting the vast majority of citizens. The people were furious at the Bush Administration bailout schemes, rightly viewing them as the greatest swindle ever pulled. Now we see the Obama Administration, which was elected to put a stop to these predations, launching its own bailout plan, one which, despite the differences, is basically a continuation of the Bush/Paulson scheme.
President Bush was fortunate that this crisis exploded rather late in his final term, so that he could scurry out of town before the consequences of his actions became fully visible. President Obama is not so lucky; he will be here for four more years, and his handling of this crisis will either make, or break, his administration. With the fate of the nation at stake, failure is not an option.
The Obama Administration must therefore change course immediately. It must scrap the bailout approach immediately, and adopt the solutions presented by LaRouche, beginning with the Homeowners and Bank Protection Act. Stop home foreclosures immediately, as no one should lose his or her home because the bankers blew up the world. Put the banks into temporary receivership; write off all the derivatives, and freeze the rest of the speculative debt; clean up the state and Federally chartered banks and reopen them, under tight new regulations which force them to act as banks instead of casinos. This receivership would include the Federal Reserve System itself, including the regional Federal Reserve Banks and all the member banks. Shut down the Fed's monetary system and replace it with a credit system, as specified in the U.S. Constitution, in which only Congress can create Federal credit, to be distributed through a new Hamiltonian Bank of the United States.
These are dramatic steps, but precisely what we require. A President with the guts to do it would find that the American people, if properly informed on what must be done and why, would provide overwhelming support to that President.
Imagine what would happen were President Obama to give a nationally televised address, in which he announced that he had just signed the orders to end the bailouts, and implement the approach outlined above, explaining to the people why this was necessary and calling for their support. He would warn them that the bankers would be apoplectic, that the Brutish Empire might very well try to kill him in retaliation, and that the full power of the corporate media would be unleashed to destroy him. But, he would conclude, with your support, we can correct our mistakes and begin to rebuild our nation and our standard of living.
The press would howl, the empire would foam at the mouth like a rabid hyena. The media would be filled with stories about how Obama had gone insane and was jeopardizing freedom itself, and how this proved the Constitution was flawed, and we must adopt a British-style parliamentary system to correct such abuses.
That would be a sight to behold, but it would be useless, because the people would support the President, giving him the backing he needed. If Obama would do it, he would become a genuine American hero, and the fascists would be once more driven back into their ratholes, where FDR left them.