March 4, 2010
A week ago Ron Paul asked Ben Bernanke a series of questions, which the Chairman and pundits immediately dismissed as “bizarre” and an indication that the potential presidential candidate has finally lost it (among these was a very nuanced question whether or not the Fed is buying sovereign debt, something which Bernanke disclosed in 2002 is a distinct possibility and an action the Fed is permitted to do). Chief among these were queries arising from the work of U of T professor Robert Auerbach, and specifically his book “Deception and Abuse at the Fed” (not available on Kindle), which seek information on whether the Fed was involved in the Watergate scandal and, subsequently, in Iraqi weapons purchases.
Well, Paul may not be as kooky as people are trying to make him out to be. None other than “consumer protection advocate” Barney Frank has demanded that Bernanke do a full probe based on these allegations.
Representative Ron Paul asked questions about “inappropriate political interference” and “hidden transfers of resources” during a Feb. 24 hearing with Bernanke, and the allegations “must be fully investigated,” Frank said in a letter today to Bernanke and obtained by Bloomberg News.
Frank, 69, said the Fed must address the charges because “continued concern about political interference” with the Fed and “allegations about a lack of transparency.” Bernanke and other Fed officials are trying to fend off a measure offered by Paul, which passed the House in December, that would open the Fed to audits of interest-rate decisions.
“These specific allegations you’ve made I think are absolutely bizarre, and I have absolutely no knowledge of anything remotely like what you just described,” Bernanke told Paul, a Texas Republican who wrote the 2009 book “End the Fed,” during last week’s hearing.
Some more on Professor Auerbach’s background, which lends substantial credibility to his allegations:
Auerbach worked for Henry Gonzalez, a former chairman of the House committee who died in 2000 and investigated the sale of U.S. arms to Iraq in the 1980s, before the Gulf War. Gonzalez said the Fed and other agencies initially tried to block his probe, according to a 1992 New York Times article.
Fed bank examiners in Atlanta failed to note $5.5 billion being funneled to Iraq from a local branch of an Italian bank, Auerbach, a critic of the central bank and former congressional economist, said in his book.
“The Federal Reserve’s ability to manage monetary policy in an effective manner depends, in large part, on its reputation for independence and integrity,” Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat, said in the letter. “A complete investigation of these charges is necessary to maintain both.”
We can’t wait just how deep this particular rabbit hole ends up going, although we will be extremely shocked if the Fed ends up finding absolutely nothing implicating it in any new illegal (and treasonous) activity. Luckily, the Fed is perfectly transparent, so the general population can do a parallel query on its own. Oh wait…
This article was posted: Thursday, March 4, 2010 at 5:34 am