You don’t need a Ph.D. in economics to understand that the modern financial system, based on paper or “fiat” currency, is riddled with fundamental imbalances.

  • Our money is intrinsically worthless and will eventually return to its intrinsic value.
  • Our banking system is a “fractional reserve” system that only requires banks to hold a tiny fraction of deposits in cash and allows the rest to be loaned out; this system could never support a sudden demand for cash or “run on the banks” in a financial crisis.
  • Our National Debt, now in excess of $32 trillion and growing, is nearly insurmountable and even unaffordable at higher interest rates. A sudden collapse in the secondary international market for US debt (or treasuries) would lead to a complete collapse of the US dollar.
  • The market for US treasuries is sustained by the US Dollar’s status as the World Reserve Currency. This status is under constant challenge by competing global alternatives in China, Russia, the EU, and even OPEC.
  • While regulators addressed a number of financial practices after the collapse of 2008, the regulation of a derivative market, estimated to be over $250 trillion in size, (more than 5 times world GDP) of unregulated financial instruments was hardly ever addressed. This derivative market is often characterized as a ticking time bomb waiting to destroy our financial system as we know it.

The threats to the fundamental stability of third-party paper-based assets even including money the bank are real! Protecting your portfolio with tangible hard assets such as gold and silver is wise and important. Your financial advisor and your banker are likely not talking about the threats of financial chaos, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

However, we don’t expect you to take simply our word for it. Economists, philosophers, US Presidents, and even religious leaders have addressed issues with financial systems and monetary policy. Here are just a few memorable quotes from globally respected authorities on the matter.


“Paper money eventually returns to its intrinsic value — zero.”

—VOLTAIRE, French writer, historian, and philosopher (1694–1778)

The Federalist

“Paper money may be deemed an aggression on the rights of the other states.”

—Number 44 of the Federalist Papers

William Paterson

“The bank hath benefit of interest on all moneys which it creates out of nothing.”

—WILLIAM PATTERSON, Scottish trader and banker

George Washington

“Paper money has had the effect in your state that it will ever have, to ruin commerce, oppress the honest, and open the door to every species of fraud and injustice.”

—GEORGE WASHINGTON, 1st President of the United States

John Adams

“All the perplexities, confusions and distresses in America arise not from defects in the constitution or confederation, not from want of honor or virtue, as much as from downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation.”

—JOHN ADAMS, 2nd President of the United States

President Andrew Jackson

“If congress has the right under the Constitution to issue paper money, it was given them to use themselves, not to be delegated to individuals or corporations.”

—ANDREW JACKSON, 7th President of the United States

John C Calhoun

“A power has risen up in the government greater than the people themselves, consisting of many and various powerful interests combined in one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in the banks.”

—JOHN C. CALHOUN, 7th Vice President of the United States

Alexander Hamilton

“To emit an unfunded paper as the sign of value ought not to continue a formal part of the Constitution, nor even hereafter to be employed; being, in its nature, pregnant with abuses, and liable to be made the engine of imposition and fraud; holding out temptations equally pernicious to the integrity of government and to the morals of the people.”

—ALEXANDER HAMILTON, 1st United States Secretary of the Treasury

Pelatiah Webster

“Paper money polluted the equity of our laws, turned them into engines of oppression, corrupted the justice of our public administration, destroyed the fortunes of thousands who had confidence in it, enervated the trade, husbandry, and manufactures of our country, and went far to destroy the morality of our people.”

—PELATIAH WEBSTER, political economist, author, and teacher

Thomas Jefferson

“I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. Already they have raised up a money aristocracy that has set the government at defiance. This issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people to whom it properly belongs. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of the moneyed corporations which already dare to challenge our Government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country.”

—THOMAS JEFFERSON, 3rd President of the United States

President Andrew Jackson

“The bold efforts that the present bank has made to control the government and the distress it has wantonly caused, are but premonitions of the fate which awaits the American people should they be deluded into a perpetuation of this institution or the establishment of another like it…If the people only understood the rank injustice of our money and banking system there would be a revolution before morning.”

—ANDREW JACKSON, 7th President of the United States

William Cobbett

“I set to work to read the Act of Parliament by which the Bank of England was created in 1694. The inventors knew well what they were about. Their design was to mortgage by degrees the whole of the country, all the lands, all the houses, and all other property, and even all labor, to those who would lend their money to the State-the scheme, the crafty, the cunning, the deep scheme has produced what the world never saw before-starvation in the midst of plenty.”

—WILLIAM COBBETT, English pamphleteer, farmer, journalist and member of parliament

president James A. Garfield

“Whoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce.”

—JAMES A. GARFIELD, 20th President of the United States

President Abraham Lincoln

“I have two great enemies: the Southern Army in front of me, and the financial institutions to my rear. Of the two, the one in my rear is my greatest foe…”

—ABRAHAM LINCOLN, 16th President of the United States

John F Kenendy

“The great free nations of the world must take control of our monetary problems if these problems are not to take control of us.”

—JOHN F. KENNEDY, 35th President of the United States

Otto von Bismarck

“The death of Lincoln was a disaster for Christendom. There was no man in the United States great enough to wear his boots and the bankers went anew to grab the riches. I fear that foreign bankers with their craftiness and tortuous tricks will entirely control the exuberant riches of America and use it to systematically corrupt modern civilization.”

—OTTO VON BISMARCK, German Chancellor (1815–1898)

George Bancroft

“Madison, agreeing with the journal of the convention, records that the grant of power to emit bills of credit was refused by a majority of more than four to one. The evidence is perfect; no power to emit paper money was granted to the legislature of the United States.”

—GEORGE BANCROFT, United States Secretary of the Navy (March 11, 1845 – September 9, 1846), United States Minister to the United Kingdom (November 12, 1846 – August 31, 1849), to Germany (August 28, 1867 – June 30, 1874)

Salmon Chase

“My agency, in promoting the passage of the National Bank Act, was the greatest mistake in my life. It has built up a monopoly which affects every interest in the country. It should be repealed, but before that can be accomplished, the people should be arrayed on one side, and the banks on the other, in a contest such as we have never seen before in this country.”

—SALMON P. CHASE, Lincoln’s Secretary to the Treasury

Horace Greeley

“While boasting of our noble deeds, we are careful to control the ugly fact that by an iniquitous money system, we have nationalized a system of oppression which, though more refined, is not less cruel than the old system of chattel slavery.”

—HORACE GREELEY, author and statesman, founder and editor of the New-York Tribune


“No State shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation; grant letters of masque and reprisal; coin money; emit letters of credit; make any thing but gold and silver coin a tender in payment of debts; pass any bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, or grant any title of nobility.”


Daniel Webster

“Of all the contrivances devised for cheating the laboring classes of mankind, none has been more effective than that which deludes him with paper money.”

—DANIEL WEBSTER, 14th and 19th United States Secretary of State

Sir Reginald McKenna

“Those who create and issue money and credit direct the policies of government and hold in the hollow of their hands the destiny of the people.”

—SIR REGINALD MCKENNA, former President of the Midland Bank of England

Anselm Salomon Rothschild

“Give me the power to issue a nation’s money; then I do not care who makes the law.”


Irving Fisher

“Thus, our national circulating medium is now at the mercy of loan transactions of banks, which lend, not money, but promises to supply money they do not possess.”

—IRVING FISHER, economist, statistician, and inventor

Ralph George Hawtrey

“Banks lend by creating credit. They create the means of payment, out of nothing.”

—RALPH GEORGE HAWTREY, former Secretary of the British Treasury

William Jennings Bryan

“Money power denounces, as public enemies, all who question its methods or throw light upon its crimes.”

—WILLIAM JENNINGS BRYAN 41st United States Secretary of State

Benjamin Disraeli

“The world is Governed by very different personages from what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes.”

—BENJAMIN DISRAELI, former British Prime Minister

Sir Josiah Stamp

“Banking was conceived in iniquity, and was born in sin. The Bankers own the Earth. Take it away from them, but leave them the power to create deposits, and with the flick of the pen, they will create enough deposits, to buy it back again. However, take it away from them, and all the great fortunes like mine will disappear, and they ought to disappear, for this would be a happier and better world to live in. But if you wish to remain the slaves of Bankers, and pay the cost of your own slavery, let them continue to create deposits.”

—SIR JOSIAH STAMP, President of the Bank of England in the 1920’s, the second richest man in Britain

Pope Pius XI

“In the first place, then, it is patent that in our days, not wealth alone is accumulated, but immense power and despotic economic domination are concentrated in the hands of the few, who for the most part are not the owners but only the trustees and directors of invested funds, which they administer at their own good pleasure. This domination is most powerfully exercised by those who, because they hold and control money, also govern credit and determine its allotment, for that reason supplying so to speak, the life blood of the entire economic body, and grasping in their hands, as it were, the very soul of production, so that no one can breathe against their will.”


President Woodrow Wilson

“A great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit. Our system of credit is concentrated. The growth of the Nation and all our activities are in the hands of a few men. We have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated governments in the world — no longer a government of free opinion, no longer a government of conviction, and vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and duress, of small groups of dominant men.”

—WOODROW WILSON, 28th President of the United States

Leo Tolstoy

“Money is a new form of slavery, and distinguishable from the old simply by the fact that it is impersonal — that there is no human relation between master and slave.”

—LEON N. TOLSTOY, novelist and short story writer

Ernest Hemingway

“The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; second is war. Both bring a temporary (and false) prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunities.”

—ERNEST HEMINGWAY, Nobel Memorial Prize winning novelist, and short-story writer

Frederic Bastiat

“When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.”


Bernard Lietaer

“Your money’s value is determined by a global casino of unprecedented proportions: $2 trillion are traded per day in foreign exchange markets, 100 times more than the trading volume of all the stock markets of the world combined. Only 2% of these foreign exchange transactions relate to the “real” economy reflecting movements of real goods and services in the world, and 98% are purely speculative. This global casino is triggering the foreign exchange crises which shook Mexico in 1994–5, Asia in 1997 and Russia in 1998.”

—BERNARD LIETAER, Economist, Professor, Author, and Fund Manager

Charles Lindbergh

“This Act (Federal Reserve Act) establishes the most gigantic trust on earth. When the President signs this bill, the invisible government by the Monetary Power will be legalized… The worst legislative crime of the age is perpetrated by this banking and currency bill. The caucus of the party bosses have again operated and prevented the people from getting the benefits of their own government.”

—CHARLES LINDBERGH, aviator, military officer, author, inventor, and explorer

Rothschild brothers

“Those few who can understand the system (check book money and credit) will either be so interested in its profits, or so dependent on it favors, that there will be little opposition from that class, while on the other hand, the great body of people mentally incapable of comprehending the tremendous advantage that capital derives from the system, will bear it burdens without complaint, and perhaps without even suspecting that the system is inimical to their interests.”


Ludwig von Mises

“Government is the only agency which can take a useful commodity like paper, slap some ink on it and make it totally worthless.”

—LUDWIG VON MISES, theoretical economist

John Maynard Keynes

“By a continuing process of inflation, governments can confiscate, secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens.”

—JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES, chief architect of our current fiat-paper money system

Friedrich Hayek

“The history of government management of money has, except for a few short happy periods, been one of incessant fraud and deception.”

—FRIEDRICH HAYEK, Nobel Memorial Prize winning economist and political philosopher

Dorothy M Nichols

“The actual process of money creation takes place in commercial banks. As noted earlier, demand liabilities of commercial banks are money. … Confidence in these forms of money also seems to be tied in some way to the fact that assets exist on the books of the government and the banks equal to the amount of money outstanding, even though most of the assets themselves are no more than pieces of paper…”

—DOROTHY M NICHOLS, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Research Department

Robert H Hemphill

“If all the bank loans were paid, no one could have a bank deposit, and there would not be a dollar of coin or currency in circulation. This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent, on the Commercial Banks. Someone has to borrow every dollar, we have in circulation, cash or credit. If the Banks create ample synthetic money, we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are, absolutely, without a permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture, the tragic absurdity, of our hopeless position, is almost incredible, but there it is. It is the most, important subject, intelligent persons can investigate and reflect upon. It is so important that our present civilization may collapse, unless it becomes widely understood, and the defects remedied very soon.”

—ROBERT H. HEMPHILL, Credit Manager of Federal Reserve Bank, Atlanta, Georgia

Darryl R Francis

“Since the direct method of printing money to finance government expenditures is prohibited in the United States, the monetization of government deficits has occurred indirectly… government debt is ultimately being financed by the creation of new money… I doubt that monetization of debt has a conscious act… I can find no benefits accruing to the whole of society from debt monetization, but the risks are very serious and can be expressed in one word, inflation.”

—DARRYL R. FRANCIS, former President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Jerry Jordan

“The failed attempts at influencing real economic activity during the late 1960’s and 1970’s are a clear warning of the damaging power of the central bank.”

—JERRY JORDAN, President of Cleveland Fed Reserve Bank

Denis Karnosky

“…what is a dollar it’s just something artificial we throw out there…what you’re doing is you’re fooling people.”

—DENNIS KARNOSKY, Chief economic adviser St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank

Lawrence Parkes

“Bypassing voters, taxpayers and the public at large, Congress has delegated to the Fed a power that the Congress itself does not have.”

—LAWRENCE PARKS, Executive Director, FAME

Bob Prechter

“I cannot morally blame all Americans for allowing, for instance, the birth of the Federal Reserve System (a private cartel with full control over the issuance of national debt) and the money destruction that has followed. They are simply ignorant about it and don’t know what happened or what is happening. They think that prices go up rather than that dollars go down. Unsound money imposes an environment of immorality, which in turn makes people behave in different ways for reasons they know not. Sometimes you can blame immorality for the imposition of bad structures (bad people do it with full knowledge of what they are doing), but sometimes it is simply stupidity. People revere democracy, but democracy ends in plunder by the majority. Are people immoral for supporting democracy? I think rather that they lack a deep understanding of its essence. At a very deep level, I would say that the reason such structures are created is due to both a lack of knowledge and a false morality, which in turn is due to a lack of knowledge.”


Thomas Alva Edison

“People who will not turn a shovel of dirt on the project, nor contribute a pound of material, will collect more money, from the United States, than will the people, who supply all the material and do all the work. This is the terrible thing about interest (usury). But here is the point: If the nation can issue a dollar bond, it can also issue a dollar bill. The element that makes the bond good, makes the bill good, also. The difference, between the bond and the bill, is that the bond lets the money-broker collect twice the amount of the bond, and an additional 20%. Whereas the currency, the honest sort, provided by the Constitution, pays nobody, but those, who contribute in some useful way. It is absurd, to say that our country can issue bonds, and cannot issue currency. Both are promises to pay, but one fattens the usurer and the other helps the people. If the currency issued by the people were no good, then the bonds would be no good, either. It is a terrible situation, when the Government, to insure the national wealth, must go in debt and submit to ruinous interest charges, at the hands of men, who control the fictitious value of gold. Interest is the invention of Satan.”

—THOMAS A. EDISON, inventor and businessman

Alan Greenspan

“The abandonment of the gold standard made it possible for the welfare statists to use the banking system as a means to an unlimited expansion of credit. In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value… [Gold] stands as a protector of property rights. This is the shabby secret of the welfare statists’ tirades against gold. Deficit spending is simply a scheme for the “hidden” confiscation of wealth. If one grasps this, one has no difficulty in understanding the statists’ antagonism toward the gold standard.”

—ALAN GREENSPAN, 13th Chairman of the Federal Reserve (in office August 11, 1987 – January 31, 2006)

Howard Buffett

“When you recall that one of the first moves by Lenin, Mussolini and Hitler was to outlaw individual ownership of gold, you begin to sense that there may be some connection between money, redeemable in gold, and the the rare prize known as human liberty. Also, when you find that Lenin declared and demonstrated that a sure way to overturn the existing social order and bring about communism was by printing press paper money, then again you are impressed with the possibility of a relationship between a gold-backed money and human freedom.”

—REP. HOWARD BUFFETT, politician, businessman, and investor

Alan Greenspan

“Gold, unlike all other commodities, is a currency…and the major thrust in the demand for gold is not for jewelry. It’s not for anything other than an escape from what is perceived to be a fiat money system, paper money, that seems to be deteriorating.”

—ALAN GREENSPAN, 13th Chairman of the Federal Reserve (in office August 11, 1987 – January 31, 2006)

London Times

“If this mischievous financial policy [of creating a debt-free currency], which has its origin in the American Republic, shall become permanent, then that government will furnish its own money without cost! It will pay off its debts and be without debt. It will have all the money necessary to carry on its commerce. It will become prosperous without precedent in the history of the world. The brains and the wealth of all countries will go to America. That government must be destroyed or it will destroy every monarchy on the globe!”


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