Debunking the Federal Reserve
Conspiracy Theories (and other financial myths)

ii. A glimpse at the American conspiracy culture.
This series of essays is dedicated primarily to investigating the Federal Reserve conspiracy theories.  It would be a mistake, however, to ignore the context in which many of these theories exist.  To the conspiracy culture, the Fed is a vital player in the plot to enslave the world.  George Johnson (1984) summarized the conspiracy world view with this following passage:
Over the last hundred years, [the] world view in which bankers, Communists, and Jews are twisted into a single enemy has become so engrained in the minds of some right-wingers that it is difficult to unravel the threads and explain exactly how they are supposed to fit together.  The connections are more emotional than rational, but the purpose of a conspiracy theory is to impose a system of inchoate hate. To Liberty Lobby, the world works something like this:

By promoting U.S. involvement in foreign wars, the bankers force the federal government into debt.  To cover its mounting deficit, the country must borrow money from the Federal Reserve System -- which is supposedly run by the international bankers -- or tax citizens through the Internal Revenue Service,  another element of the plot.  The Soviets benefit because the United States is so distracted by its various foreign ventures that it has no time to oppose the Communist plan to enslave the world with a Marxist superstate.

According to the theory, Communists and capitalists only seem to be competitors, while, in truth, they are working toward the same goals: socialism and one-world government.  Expensive federal social programs increase government borrowing, enriching the bankers.  Taxes and government regulation oppress small-scale entrepreneurs and businessmen, keeping them from challenging the bankers' wealth.  In a one-world government, this power over the people would be extended to      every continent, strengthening the bankers' stranglehold on the planet (Johnson, pp. 104-105).

Johnson wrote this in 1984 when the Soviet threat was still with us.  If you strike the words "Soviet" and "Communists" from the text and simply  replace them with "socialists," then the plot still retains a fresh relevance for the modern conspiracy believer.  Of course, much of this conspiracy theory cannot be falsified -- there's no way to prove there isn't a conspiracy, much like there's no way to prove Santa Clause doesn't exist.  This is the reason why the Fed essays on this site deal only with those which can in principle be falsified.  This does not preclude the possibility, however, true believers will simply ignore the evidence against the conspiracy theory or  just rewrite it a bit so as to make it unfalsifiable. In this respect conspiracy believers are very much like believers in the paranormal.

For a first-hand look at many of the conspiracy theories I examine here, see the following web sites:

Billions for the Bankers, Debt for the People

Revive America: Reform the Fed

One World Order!

Secrets of the Federal Reserve

World-wide Economic Collapse...?

Moneypulation (Money Manipulation)

The Federal Reserve

President Kennedy, the Federal Reserve, and EO 11,110

The Problem and the Solution

How America will be destroyed by 2010

Johnson, George (1984). Architects of Fear: Conspiracy Theories and Paranoia in American Politics.  Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.

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