Saturday, May 25, 2013

Alexander Hamilton on democracy

All communities divide themselves into the few and the many. The first are the rich and well-born, the other the mass of the people. The voice of the people has been said to be the voice of God; and, however generally this maxim has been quoted and believed, it is not true in fact. The people are turbulent and changing; they seldom judge or determine right. Give, therefore, to the first class a distinct, permanent share in the government. They will check the unsteadiness of the second, and, as they cannot receive any advantage by a change, they therefore will ever maintain good government. Can a democratic Assembly, who annually revolve in the mass of the people, be supposed steadily to pursue the public good? Nothing but a permanent body can check the imprudence of a democracy. Their turbulent and uncontrolling disposition requires checks.
Alexander Hamilton
Speeches in the Federal Convention, p. 401

You know, because some people are better than others.


22 comments:

y said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben Johannson said...

So Hamilton's thinking was based upon one massive assumption after another. It's almost like he was an economist.

Bob Roddis said...

I figured that nasty little statists like you guys would love Hamilton, the original American statist.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/dilorenzo/dilorenzo136.html

F. Beard said...

Most people are broadly content to let the elites run things until the elites demonstrate their incompetence and/or contempt for the common welfare. That's when democracy is needed - as an alternative to violent revolution.

Good leaders have nothing to fear from democracy since a content population is no danger to them. Those who fear or hate democracy either have a guilty conscience or guilty intentions, imo.

F. Beard said...

I note that Hamilton's attempt to cheat at his duel has been purged from wiki.

y said...

"Hamilton proposed establishing the initial funding for the Bank of the United States through the sale of $10 million in stock of which the United States government would purchase the first $2 million in shares. Hamilton, foreseeing the objection that this could not be done since the U.S. government

didn't have $2 million,

proposed that the government make the stock purchase using

money lent to it by the Bank;

the loan to be paid back in ten equal annual installments"

HA ha ha.

What a joke.

y said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Bank_of_the_United_States

y said...

According to Merriam Webster the first know use of the word 'statist' was in 1946.

F. Beard said...

"Hamilton, foreseeing the objection that this could not be done since the U.S. government didn't have $2 million, proposed that the government make the stock purchase using money lent to it by the Bank; the loan to be paid back in ten equal annual installments" via y

The US Government, in order to repay the loan, would have to accept the Bank's money for taxes. But that violates Matthew 22:16-22 in that Caesar is to be paid with Caesar's money ONLY.

Getting governments to accept private money is an old banker's trick. That is fascism, not liberty.

Matt Franko said...

Y & F,

It was metal the US Didnt have...

F, Ceasar's "money" was NOT a mass measure of metal.... this is important ...

Rsp

F. Beard said...

Of course. Caesar's money was Caesar's money because ONLY Caesar could create it. What it was made of was irrelevant.

F. Beard said...

But Hamilton wanted a private bank to create Caesar's money which means Hamilton was a fascist as many gold-bugs are today.

Tom Hickey said...

"I figured that nasty little statists like you guys would love Hamilton, the original American statist."

No, Bob, it's neoliberals of all stripes that hate democracy as the rule of a majority, "which gives the rabble of mob rule the power to suppress their betters."

IIRC, you are on record in the comments here as advocating the position that popular democracy is not to be trusted as "majority rule" since it capable of suppressing the rights of a minority.

But that's why we have a constitution and the rule of law — to protect the rights of individuals and those in the minority.

Matt Franko said...

F,

The Lord's lips never uttered the word "money"....

Rsp

F. Beard said...

What? A denarius was not money? News to me, that one is.

F. Beard said...

Hey Matt,

You should check out how Lew Rockwell's pet clergy murder Matthew 22:16-22 and Romans 13.

Just Google "Roman 13 lew rockwell" for one and "Render to Caesar lew rockwell" for the other.

Matt Franko said...

F.,

The English word "money" is a metonym.

Use of this word contributes to the conflation of disparate systems.

The ancients did not use this word, the Lord never used a word that could be accurately translated into the English word "money".

If you think not, then cite to me chapter and verse where He did and I'll take a look at it...

A "denarius" was a type of "nomisma" that was used to pay Poll Tax, ie you could not pay your poll tax with a piece of silver (argurion).... the language is specific throughout all of the Greek scriptures... there are no conflations about these systems in the Greek scriptures...

This current contemporary conflation that comes about thru repeated use of metonymy by the academe (who should know better btw) is a big part of the problem we (outside of the academe who understand the different systems) face today in trying to educate the general public about the different types of systems that are today broadly categorized by the academe as 'Monetary Systems'.

The rubes and the academe look at it as "Money is money", we are not rubes nor (thankfully) part of the academe....

rsp,







Matt Franko said...

F,

It's like you are trying to assert that "a Dollar is the same thing as a Euro".... it's absurd...

rsp,

F. Beard said...

A "denarius" was a type of "nomisma" that was used to pay Poll Tax, ie you could not pay your poll tax with a piece of silver (argurion).... Matt F.

Have I ever said or implied otherwise? I carefully differentiate between government money which I presume you call "nomisma" from private monies, which within a given jurisdiction, would be all other monies.

And "nomisma" should ONLY be created by the monetary sovereign, not some private or semi-private bank. Disagree? Or do you think the liberty the Gentiles are allowed under Christ is to be used to promote injustice?

Matt Franko said...

F,

How can our SYSTEM design directly lead to injustice? This is like saying "it's the gun that kills not the shooter"...

The Mosaic Law which you often refer to (although I do not know why) allowed lending no problem, just little/no interest on the loans and a 7 year payback...

Banks do not create any $NFA thru their loans as when they make the loan, there is established two accounting entries that net to zero.

The only $NFA created IS created by the govt when it spends on provision and transfers... the depository institutions do not "create money" they create liabilities in the non-govt sector.

Banks facilitate the creation of the "net liability cohort" within the non-govt sector, that is all. This is not an impressive business model, especially when the CEOs of the same banks lobby Congress to "stop spending" which is advocating for policy that will directly cause their businesses to fail...

And, I take issue with your characterization of our Federal Reserve System as a "govt backed cartel"... this is just not factually correct.

The FRA establishes "Depository Institutions" under LAW. Anyone can put a small such "bank" together if they have the USDs...

These Depository Institutions are highly regulated legal entities.

"Cartels" are illegal.

The FRS and the member Depository Institutions, among other things collect the taxes for the US Treasury and disburse from the Treasury General Account to pay non-govt entities... this is an important function.

The FRS is our Treasury's designated 'fiscal agent', again so what? This is not a big deal..

They also lend USDs against capital under loan agreements with borrowers, so what?

Examine the history of bank credit in the Feds H.8 report, it is not spectacular.

All they have done mostly is lend against property and autos, so what?

Everybody needs a place to live and/or work, lodgings, and needs a car for transportation...

as long as govt policy provides for full employment and systemic $NFA flows are adequate to provide the leading $NFA to the net liability cohort in the non-govt, this can result in a minimally fair/equitable result.

It sounds to me that what you really are complaining about is that taxes are too high, policy rates have been too high, and govt is not using it's authority to assure full employment and more robust incomes...these points I would agree with you on...

rsp,

PS I'm NOT a Gentile, I take mild offense to being referred to as such, it's like calling an African-American a "non-white"...

F. Beard said...

How can our SYSTEM design directly lead to injustice? Matt F.

Because it is designed for the benefit of the so-called "creditworthy." But no one is "worthy" of stolen goods. And the banks do steal; they steal the purchasing power of those who can't or won't borrow from them.

The Mosaic Law which you often refer to (although I do not know why) M. Franko

What part of "All Scripture ..." don't you get?

allowed lending no problem, just little/no interest on the loans and a 7 year payback... M. Franko

All loans to fellow Hebrews were to be 0% interest and lending was encouraged by God, not just allowed. And loans to the poor were to be 0% too (regardless of nationality, I suppose.)

Banks do not create any $NFA thru their loans as when they make the loan, there is established two accounting entries that net to zero. M. Franko

That's mere accounting sophistry. The immediate creation of new purchasing power cannot be justly balanced with the destruction of that purchasing power over time. Consider a 30 mortgage. The creation of that new purchasing power can immediately drive up the cost of housing. Should non-borrowers be content to wait ~10 years till that new purchasing power is destroyed? And will it be destroyed given that deflation is damaging too?

... the depository institutions do not "create money" they create liabilities in the non-govt sector. M. Franko

The banks create temporary money, "credit" which spends just as well (actually better) than physical fiat. And in aggregate, bank credit is typically NOT temporary but ever expands.

Banks facilitate the creation of the "net liability cohort" within the non-govt sector, that is all. This is not an impressive business model, especially when the CEOs of the same banks lobby Congress to "stop spending" which is advocating for policy that will directly cause their businesses to fail... M. Franko

Evil and stupid are not mutually exclusive.

And, I take issue with your characterization of our Federal Reserve System as a "govt backed cartel"... this is just not factually correct.

The FRA establishes "Depository Institutions" under LAW. Anyone can put a small such "bank" together if they have the USDs...
M. Franko [bold added]

Anyone willing to drive their neighbors into debt and willing to collect interest from a fellow countryman - sinners, in other words.

These Depository Institutions are highly regulated legal entities. M. Franko

The monetary sovereign ITSELF is the ONLY proper provider of a risk-free transaction and storage service for its fiat. Let the banks create and manage their own entirely private monies, if they can find people who will accept that money.

[to be continued?]

F. Beard said...

[reply to Matt Franko continued]

"Cartels" are illegal. M. Franko

The banks are a legal cartel backed by:

1) A government-provided legal tender lender of last resort.
2) Deposit insurance provided by the monetary sovereign.
3) Negligence on the part of the monetary sovereign wrt providing a risk-free storage and transaction service for its fiat.

The FRS and the member Depository Institutions, among other things collect the taxes for the US Treasury and disburse from the Treasury General Account to pay non-govt entities... this is an important function. Matt Franko

Those are government functions and should be properly handled by the US Treasury.

The FRS is our Treasury's designated 'fiscal agent', again so what? This is not a big deal.. Matt Franko

What about the 6% annual dividend paid to regional banks? Not a big deal?

They also lend USDs against capital under loan agreements with borrowers, so what? Matt Franko

No, they create new USDs as they lend them.

Examine the history of bank credit in the Feds H.8 report, it is not spectacular.

All they have done mostly is lend against property and autos, so what?
Matt Franko

Again, banks don't lend existing money; they drive people into debt by lending new purchasing power into existence thereby driving up prices thereby making it NECESSARY to borrow from them! That's a form of extortion!

Everybody needs a place to live and/or work, lodgings, and needs a car for transportation... Matt Franko

Many, many jobs have been automated/outsourced away with the workers' own stolen purchasing power. As a result, the banks are repossessing their homes, leaving them homeless as Jefferson predicted.

as long as govt policy provides for full employment Matt Franko

Workers are increasingly unneeded due to automation. A just money system would have precluded poverty due to unemployment because nearly everyone would have equity instead of debt!

and systemic $NFA flows are adequate to provide the leading $NFA to the net liability cohort in the non-govt, this can result in a minimally fair/equitable result. Matt Franko

The private sector should not depend on the monetary sovereign's deficit spending.

It sounds to me that what you really are complaining about is that taxes are too high, policy rates have been too high, and govt is not using it's authority to assure full employment and more robust incomes...these points I would agree with you on... Matt Franko

No, though I'm not opposed to symptomatic relief while the root causes are treated; I'm complaining about a inherently unjust and unstable money system that has killed tens of millions in WWII alone and for which there is no excuse, given the existence of ethical private money forms such as common stock.

rsp, Matt Franko

You're polite!

PS I'm NOT a Gentile, I take mild offense to being referred to as such, it's like calling an African-American a "non-white" Matt Franko

Gentiles are merely non-Hebrews; I'm surprised you're offended.