CHAPTER II: The Central Issue is Money

I begin with the fact that you are ignorant of money. Money is one of the crucially important elements of our culture. It represents a fundamental human achievement -- like the wheel or the alphabet. Yet the average person is unable to answer such simple questions as:

Where does our money come from?

Who has the authority to issue it?

What gives it value?

How is it regulated to serve the public good? The reason for this ignorance lies in the nature of exploitation.

Exploitation, such as is practiced by the American power structure on the American people, always takes from the many poor to give to the few rich. Exploitation of the type preached by the New Deal -- to take from the rich and give to the poor -- is a fantasy which has never existed in human history for any significant period of time. Robbing from the few to enrich the many does not provide sufficient spoils to be worthwhile. Robbing from the powerful to give to the weak simply does not happen. The powerful do not permit it. Organizing a majority of poor people to use the power of their vote to take from the rich (as the New Deal claimed to do) has never happened in history. The power of money and control over the media count for far more in politics than mere numbers. Therefore, all forms of exploitation take wealth from the many, who are relatively poor and weak, and give to a few, who are relatively rich and powerful.

This raises the question of how it is possible for the few to exploit the many; in the obvious sense the many has brute force on its side. When the French peasants overthrew the French aristocracy in 1789, they outnumbered the aristocracy 100 to 1, and the battle was over in a few days. Yet these peasants had remained in subjugation for 1,500 years! Since their victory was so easy and their suffering had been so great, why did they wait so long to rebel?

The answer is that all exploitation is fundamentally based on ideas. Just as the lion tamer puts false ideas into the lion's head and convinces him to submit to an inferior force, so a power structure puts false ideas into the heads of the people and convinces them to submit to various kinds of exploitation. Every power structure therefore, has a need for intellectuals to concoct such ideas. And in every age, intellectuals themselves divide into two camps -- those who support the power structure (either to devise new theories of slavery or to defend those already established) and those who support the truth (and hence are on the side of the people).

The average person is ignorant of money because in the 20th century money is the domain for the power structure's system of exploitation. This system was erected in a series of political battles between December 1913 and August 1971 and constitutes the essence of our institution of paper money. It is vitally important for these people that you be kept in ignorance, that you not know where the money in your pocket came from or who has the authority to is sue it, that you not know why it is losing value or even that It is losing value, and that you not know who benefits from this system and who Is Its victim.

It is important that you be kept in ignorance for the same reason that the medieval serf was kept in ignorance. If you understood these things, you would rebel and smash the existing system by 100 to 1. It is thus incumbant upon freedom fighters In the 20th century to spread knowledge of money as freedom fighters in earlier centuries spread knowledge of religion or politics; this is what Is essential to defeat the modern power structure.

Through the decade of the 1970s, a tiny band of people who had this knowledge of money carried on the fight. Although small in number, on February 12, 1982, they were able to win a significant victory' a victory which will enable you to go on the gold standard in your own life. This was the endorsement by the President's Gold Commission of a gold coin designed to be a competing currency with the paper dollar. Those who have knowledge of money will be able to take advantage of this gold coin to keep for themselves the product of their own labor. Those who do not will continue their modern serfdom.

Perhaps you have read a science fiction story about a young man living in a slave world of the future where the people are mired in superstition. One by one, the man challenges the myths of that society and comes into increasing conflict with its higher authorities. Finally, his life is threatened, and he escapes over the outer boundary where -- everyone knows -- exist monsters, darkness and certain death -- where no human life is possible.

But instead of darkness he finds sunshine and a land of freedom and beauty, inhabited by others who overcame the imaginary terrors and escaped from the land of slavery before him. The chains binding him were not real. The land of freedom had always existed, ready for him when he had the courage to see it.

Although these stories are fiction, a comparable moral issue exists today in reality and confronts every American. Those who believe the myths will continue to be exploited. Those who reject them will be free. Thus, the first task of this book is to give you the requisite knowledge of money so that you can protect your liberty and your property from the power structure of our day.

This material is made available with the generous permission of Howard Katz (1931-2012).