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Surely I’m dreaming. This is beyond a fantasy. It’s got to be a hallucination. I don’t know whether to weep, shout hallelujah, or just pass out in total disbelief.
But there it is in the official record: 96 to zero. That was the shocking vote in the U.S. Senate on May 11 to subject the secretive, imperious, all-powerful Federal Reserve System to a tiny ray of democratic sunlight. This had never happened before. Weak-kneed leaders of both parties have been more frightened of the Fed than the Cowardly Lion was of the Wizard of Oz. The Fed, which is a convoluted and anti-democratic fabrication that allows private banks to wield government authority over our nation’s financial system, has long asserted that it must work its wonders with complete independence from the people’s will and should not even have its actions seriously questioned, much less scrutinized by common congress critters.
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But that was before the recent Wall Street collapse caused our current economic catastrophe. As this crisis unfolded, the Fed’s coziness with the very powerhouse banks it is supposed to regulate was exposed, for Fed officials were caught funneling some $2 trillion in public funds to the Wall Street banksters. Worse, they refused to tell the public or the Congress how much was given to whom and what they did with our money!
This high-handed giveaway reeked of such deep institutional corruption that even the senate gagged. Thus, under the shrewd legislative guidance of Sen. Bernie Sanders, the members have now voted unanimously to open the Fed’s books to a public audit of its odious backdoor bailout. This look at the books is only a start, for it’s likely to reveal a whole nest of nastiness. So – at long last – we might be headed to some fundamental democratic reforms of this plutocratic system. Stay tuned!
“Senate Approves Bernie Sanders’ Fed Audit,” www.alternet.org, May 11, 2010.
“Outing the Fed,” www.thenation.com, May 10, 2010.