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A national bank to stop fascism

On December 6th, 1937 King O’Malley wrote to US President Franklin Roosevelt. He spoke about Australia’s Government Bank:

“I had the honour of forcing this Bank onto the Australian Statute Book after ten years of fighting in Parliament [while I was] Minister for Home Affairs. Nobody would second it.

“We gave the late Denison Miller fifty thousand dollars to start the Bank and, at the end of six months, he returned it and that is all the capital we ever put into the Bank. Since its foundation it has made 200 million dollars net profit for the Australian Tax Payers and now has a capital of over fifty million dollars in reserves.

“I do hope Mr. President, that before you retire you will transform all the reserve regional Banks [i.e. the Federal Reserve] into Government Banks so that the American people will have the profits for themselves—as we have here. ...

“The privately organised Banking system of the world rests on production of dividends for shareholders and not the public welfare.

“In periods of advancing prices the system discounts and expands credits to full capacity, thereby, in certain periods, generating booms and later dropping values. It withdraws credits creating financial slumps and economic panics. It then blames men like you, who stand between the depressed struggling masses and the upper legalised jungle plunderers.”

In a statement very similar to that made by Roosevelt to the Congress in 1938, when he described fascism as private powers taking over government and the essential functions of government, O’Malley went on the say:

“The question therefore is, Who shall control the operations of Governments? Shall it be Organised Wealth through private banks, or the people under the guidance of yourself or other Statesmen?

“The power to contract and expand the currency or any medium of exchange is the power to change the price of every commodity in the Nation. A power which enriches the few and pauperises the many. Such despotic financial power should not be in the hands of private monopolies but under Government regulation.”

In a five hour speech in 1909 to the federal parliament O’Malley had emphasised, “The private banking system of the Commonwealth is only a legalised monopoly for the gathering of wealth from the many, and its concentration in the hand of the privileged few.” Citing Alexander Hamilton, the founder of the First National Bank of America, he therefore demanded that, “The American experience should determine us to establish a national banking system which cannot be attacked.”

Federal MP Frank Anstey, a member of O’Malley’s torpedo brigade, described the enemy Australia was up against in its battle for sovereignty, as the “Money Power.” He said, “The key to the power of this group is combination and concentration. It controls banks, trust companies, insurances—the main depositories of the peoples’ savings or the reservoir to which they flow. It controls all credit. It advances or withholds credits, builds up or destroys.”

“The grip of British capitalism upon Australia consists, not only of mortgages upon Australian Governments, not only on the overseas ownership of Australian resources, but upon the control of nearly one-third of the total depository power of the Australian people per medium of the British banks and British insurances trading within Australia. ... Australia is a mere appendage of financial London, without distinct economic existence ... These men constitute the Financial Oligarchy. No nation is permitted to hold dominion, and no ‘democracy’ can be aught but a name that does not shake it from its throne.”

In his book, The Great Bust, NSW Premier Jack Lang described the many tentacles of the British octopus that completely dominated Australia:

“The City of London provided all the capital required for the development of the colonies. The City controlled the ships, the wool and wheat exchanges, the insurance houses and all the other machinery of trade and commerce...

“The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street, as they called the Bank of England, presided over the financial dynasty of the Empire. It was supported by the Big Five, the major private banks. If a government in the Dominions or the colonies wanted to raise money, it had to go through approved channels. The financial world was divided into zones of influence. The Houses of Nivison, Rothschild, Barings, Morgan and Grenfell, all had their respective rights. If a government in the colonies wanted to raise money, it could only approach one firm. It had to meet a rigidly controlled scale of underwriting fees. It had to accept the conditions and the interest rates dictated by its London representatives. Every government had its London agents, who were actually agents for the British investors. There was no room for argument. It was a case of taking it or leaving it. It was useless to try another source. The City had its own underground communication system. It was left to the underwriters to divide up the spoil. They simply produced the clearing house.”

You can see why the “Money Power” went ballistic when Lang refused to pay the British Bondholders! Not primarily because they demanded payment, but because Lang was undermining their entire system of control. From that standpoint a national bank was anathema.

The key thing to realise, is that the British control over this country today is identical, if not worse, to what has been described above. We must finish the fight for financial sovereignty, starting with the Homeowners and Protection Bill, followed by a national bank.


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