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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/6/10

We CAN Have it all, Part II

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Today, I posted an act of rebellion so profound that it supersedes the fact it is originating from a country of just 300,000 people, Iceland.

Iceland? Why there?

Well, read the quicklink from the NY Times I posted today (finally, even the MSM is waking up, a little). Iceland voters make Tea Partiers look like, well, people just sitting down at a Tea Party. They are practically revolting to overthrow the government - in fact, they already have swept the old power out of office, and today they will resoundingly reject a measure to repay absentee landlords the money owed them by a private bank: Icesave. Their $5.3 billion debt would be the equivalent of $5 Trillion here - owed to a foreign bank! If Iceland tells the foreign banks to shove it, and forgoes the second installment of a nearly $5 billion IMF loan, this will set a precedent for sovereign rule and money creation, and perhaps start to break the worldwide Central Bank model that is bankrupting countries across the globe.

Every country has the Sovereign right to produce its own money - it's even in Article 1, Section 8 of our constitution, under "Congress has the power to coin money." We do not need to borrow our own money and create treasury bonds, then pay interest on them to fund our obligations. As Thomas Edison said, "If our nation can issue a dollar bond, it can issue a dollar bill. The element that makes the bond good makes the bill good.."

We do not need to pay back foreign lenders in further borrowed money, either; we can pay them in our own currency, produced by the government, not by a Federal Reserve, which is neither Federal, nor a Reserve (in the phone book, they are listed shortly after Federal Express, and they appear on no Government Budget). If the Government declares U.S. Notes to be legal tender, despite not having been produced since 1971, then that is what they are. (They are very hard to find now, though).

We can also create State Banks in every state, like we now have only in North Dakota, now the ONLY state with a budget surplus - and a record one at that. North Dakota told the Wall Street bankers to take a hike in 1919 when it chartered its own State Bank and has been profitable ever since. We can apply U.S. Greenbacks (or U.S. Notes) - the same kind of money first printed by Lincoln to fund the Civil War (and you thought WE had a crisis!) - to rebuild our infrastructure, fund universal healthcare, and educate our children - all without stoking inflation. Inflation is caused by too much money chasing too few goods, or seen another way, by the decrease in collateral causing a collapse in debt issuance in the form of loans. (Up-to-his-neck-in-debt homeowner says to the bank, "NO! I will not borrow any more money from you and you can't make me! --> Debt (and money) collapse). Well, we may have too few of the "goods" (or services) I just mentioned, but there certainly isn't too much money chasing them - there is way too little. So, we can tip the scales and not have inflation, just balance. (Call me when we have Too Much Healthcare, Too much New Infrastructure, Too Many bright children).

Finally, we can adopt the Single Tax and eliminate the Income tax - NOT coincidentally, created simultaneously with the Federal Reserve, in 1913. The Single Tax would collect taxes on the use and abuse of natural resources, which, rightfully, belong to all of us (sign the petition here). After all, Exxon didn't create the oil in the ground, did they? The Single Tax would "tax what you burn, not what you earn." It would make polluters pay, and labor rewarding. The Single Tax would UNTAX truly productive things like wages, sales, and true capital (buildings, tractors, planes etc.), thereby freeing up both productive capacity and eliminating nearly all corruptive influences in Government. It is much easier to collect the money upstream, from the value of nature, than downstream where an army of lobbyists, lawyers, accountants, and other loophole-hunters have gotten through with the tax returns.

It doesn't have to be this way. It's not the country that is poor, it is the people.

There is nothing sacrosanct, or even part of a national tradition about having a Central Bank, national debt (Andrew Jackson abolished both in the mid 19th century), or skyrocketing wealth for the resource monopolizing upper 1%, while the middle class shrinks into oblivion, and the poor merely starve and die.

We have the resources - both natural and human - to rebuild America, to achieve great, world-leading Green technology. There IS enough to go around. Scarcity only exists because some have far more than they need, while others have far less. Both extreme poverty and extreme wealth are unnatural and manmade conditions of a faulty economic model. It is not a matter of confiscating wealth, it is a matter of rewarding labor, and not rewarding the mere monopoly of land, monetary resources, or even politicians' ears.
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Scott Baker is a Managing Editor & The Economics Editor at Opednews, and a former blogger for Huffington Post, Daily Kos, and Global Economic Intersection.

His anthology of updated Opednews articles "America is Not Broke" was published by Tayen Lane Publishing (March, 2015) and may be found here:

Scott is a former and current President of Common Ground-NY (, a Geoist/Georgist activist group. He has written dozens of (more...)

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