BY KEITH M. JUDGE
There are two reasons Grover Cleveland won his second term in office: he and his opponent were disliked by The Left, who composed half the electorate, and Cleveland’s first term was relatively mild and interrupted by Benjamin Harrison, who capitulated to The Left’s monetary demands, but developed a reputation for siding with company men in labor conflicts. Harrison tried to drive a wedge between wage labor and the self-employed. These two groups were scales in the hand of late nineteenth century Justice. Silver mining was a welcome alternative for wage laborers, yet was unable to fully absorb the flux of migrants who flooded the country. Rather than divide The Left, Harrison emboldened them. Various factions solidified in the quaint confines of the People’s Party and their growing influence is why Cleveland was a shoe-in for The Democratic nomineein 1892; that and the relative calm of his first term.
The Left could hardly anticipate World Capital’s maneuver to dispossess them of health, shelter and any means of subsistence with the help of the Grover Cleveland. What sort of person starves their neighbors to death out of spite? Cleveland was a lifelong supporter of so-called “sound money,” but no one ever thought he would commit mass murder for financial or political gain. Rexford Tugwell gives Grover the benefit of the doubt on the former charge.(1) We can neither confirm nor deny that Grover Cleveland profited from the devastation he wrought, but it’s hard to fathom how the wretch left his second term in office as anything more than a friendless nobody, lest he was a rich, friendless nobody.
Boredom and defeat in the twilight of his life is the palest shade of justice for the multitude of lives he destroyed.
The entire pretext for the demonetization of silver was farce from the moment a sly editor for “The Eastern press”(2) included the word, “panic” in a newspaper headline. They’re always eager to whet the whistle of Capital and dictate the national narrative. Newspaper men in Manhattan were chomping at the bit to drum up anxiety, so they made a public spectacle out of pacifying the populace. “The public prints were therefore furnished with opinions that the ‘clouds’ would no doubt soon pass away.”(3) Albert Clark Stevens, former editor of the long-defunct Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary and Bradstreet’s, a journal for “trade, finance and public economy,” who wrote an Encyclopedia of secret societies and was of a “popular” disposition,(4) tells us the public’s preference for gold was purely “psychological.”(5) An avalanche of propaganda “seemed almost to scream with fanatic fear.”(6) The circumstances surrounding the panic were so thoroughly suspect, Stevens was hesitant to refer to the coordinated retraction of liquidity from domestic markets in the last decade of the nineteenth century as a panic. He preferred the word, “phenomenon.”
Capitalist propaganda has been so pervasive for the last 125 years, the histories of The Engineered Starvation of 1893 and The People’s Party are mostly buried. Willard Fisher, a “nationally known economist and authority on labor problems” and 1912 “Progressive party nominee for Governor of Connecticut,”(7) expanded on the problem in his literary and economic critique, Coin and His Critics, in which he discusses the work of William Hope Harvey. If the world was a more equitable and reasonable place in the nineteenth century, the working class today would’ve been introduced to the likes of Peter Cooper and William Hope Harvey rather than Karl Marx & Company. Marxism lends itself to centralization, wage labor, and increased inequality and vulnerability. Marx focuses on money because he’s too chickenshit, myopic or deceitful to mention the citizen’s right to propose laws and vote on them, and despite his protestations, after the revolution, the proletariat is still slaving away for dirt wages in a giant factory at the convenience of distant managers. Marxism is a trojan horse for the same romanesque authoritarianism that’s typical of Capitalism.
The history of The Left has been forgotten or supplanted by the work of soboteurs, aimless wanderers and creative nihilists. For every gospel penned in The Bible at The Council of Trent, how many were discarded? On average, we’re likely better off listening to the forgotten since the course of history is writ large with the cruelty of dishonest men. Unlike Marxism, The American Left was a real threat to Capitalism. Marx wanted to use democracy in order to destroy it and install a bureau of partisans who institute wage-labor by fiat. Alternatively, The Left naturally favors self-employment and democracy, the right to vote on and propose laws.
After nearly a century of rivalry, Russia, China and The United States, these three large, unwieldy “superpowers” resemble one another. It’s plain as day, like a fat puckered anus hovering in the heavens, quivering with fear and ready to unleash a virulent shit plume of envy across the Earth, but quaint observation of the patently obvious has been universally reviled by the status quo since Wall Street concluded the nineteenth century by muddying the historical record to cover up the genocide of a nascent, white, protestant middle class by World Capital on American soil. Working people weren’t thrown out of gainful employment, house and home between 1873 and 1892 by accident, nor did they starve to death en masse after 1893 as a matter of course. To suggest otherwise is a practice in self-deceit.(8) If we had listened to Willard Fisher and his predecessors,(9) we may have evaded the catastrophic dimensions of our postmodern present, but other forces were at play. In Coin and his Critics, Fisher impales Capitalist economists on the written record, which he wields like a master spear fisherman, yet his work is buried in the works cited sections of papers by so-called historians who persist in the proliferation of Capitalist lies.
Did they misread Fisher’s critique, or are they fucking with us?
To be fair, postmodernism has been preoccupied with casual, superficial references to the work of soboteurs, aimless wanderers and creative nihilists since the dawn of the “information age.” Like their predecessors, ye Liberals of Olde, champions of postmodernity mostly ignore the starving masses or blame the working poor for our own misfortunes. They’re left with few options for reference on the subject of human suffering at the conclusion of the nineteenth century but what The Left has cared to leave us. Only The Left made accurate record of the devastation that followed 1893, which is no coincidence since they were the victims.
The silver dollar of 37.25 grains of pure metal was consciously and deliberately chosen as the monetary unit of our country in 1792, and it continued to be our standard of value until 1873. During all these years, the mints were open to the equally free coinage of both gold and silver; these metals preserved their old ratio of 15.5 to 1; prices remained constant; and the world in general and the United States in particular were prosperous. In 1873 silver was demonetized, — secretly by America, openly by Germany and the Latin Union — and the world plunged into deep distress.(10)
The Coinage Act of 1792 states the following.
. . . that all the gold and silver coins, which shall have been struck at, and issued from the said mint, shall be lawful tender in all payments whatsoever . . . be it further enacted, that from every separate mass of standard gold or silver, which shall be made into coins at the said mint, there shall be taken, set apart by the treasurer and reserved in his custody a certain number of pieces, not less than three . . .(11)
The Constitution’s contract clause makes the framers’ intentions explicit.
No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts . . .(12)
Andrew Jackson passed an Act concerning the gold coins of the United States, and for other purposes on June 28, 1834. In it, the weight of a gold Eagle was lowered from “two hundred and forty-seven grains and four eighths of a grain of pure”(13) to “two hundred and thirty-two grains of pure,”(14) thereby increasing the amount of silver in the ratio from 15:1 to 15.5:1, inviting an exodus of silver abroad, where it was valued at the former rate internationally. The American Eagle was the golden ten dollar standard, whereas the silver dollar was the standard until 1873, which is why The American Left collectively referred to the Coinage Act of 1873 as The Crime of 73.
Section 15: . . . said coins shall be a legal tender at their nominal value for any amount not exceeding five dollars in any one payment.
Section 17: That no coins, either of gold, silver, or minor coinage, shall hereafter be issued from the mint other than those of the denominations, standards, and weights herein set forth.
Section 21: That any owner of silver bullion may deposit the same at any mint, to be formed into bars, or into dollars of the weight of four hundred twenty grains, troy, designated in this act as trade-dollars, and no deposit of silver for other coinage shall be received; but silver bullion contained in gold deposits, and separated therefrom, may be paid for in silver coin, at such valuation as may be, from time to time, established by the director of the mint. (15)
The bill omits mention of the silver dollar and replaces it with the “trade-dollar,” or “said coins.” The bill instructs the mint to effectively limit silver stock to a single, useless product. Unlike the silver dollar, the trade-dollar was artificially capped at a 5 dollar value while at market,(16) rendering it unfit for daily commerce, but the metal could be forged into bars for storage or international trade. An exception was granted to companies processing gold with veins of silver throughout. They were given the option to process silver into a “valuation as may be, from time to time, established by the director of the mint,” but no such courtesy was extended to persons processing a greater quantity of silver.
The Crime of 73 followed on the heels of a precedent set in 1853,(17) when Congress demonetized the silver half dime, dime, quarter dollar, and half dollar by arbitrarily capping their values while authorizing a three dollar gold piece as a slap in the face to “soft money” advocates. The Coinage Act of 73 provoked outrage across the country and five years later, Congress effectively repealed those devaluations, discontinued the trade-dollar and returned a commerce of silver to the American people, but neglected to offer a means of minting silver into quantities suitable to the needs of the economy, a practice that never returned to the United States. Instead, under pressure from the increasingly influential and powerful American Left, Benjamin Harrison passed An act directing the purchase of silver bullion and the issue of Treasury notes thereon, and for other purposes in 1890, which didn’t allow for the coinage of silver, but offered notes redeemable “in gold or silver coin”(18) in return for bullion.
All of this was explained in less exacting, more colorful, yet precise language by Willard Clark Fisher in his literary critique of 1896. There’s nothing in the history of U.S. numismatic finance law, in its execution, nor in the subsequent economic theater it rendered, nor in all the earthly events in the four years preceding 1893 that could for a single moment within the realm of reason suggest that bimetallism or the resumption of silver’s status and use among the American people could ever have caused The Engineered Starvation of 1893, and anyone who suggests otherwise is a liar. There was a so-called panic because Capitalism asked for a blood sacrifice to feed a thirsty, golden monkey idol.
When we read accounts of The Holocaust, the primary cause of death is consistently starvation and exposure. Gas chambers, ovens and the like were little SS pet projects, accent marks over the fields of emaciated bodies dumped into mass graves. German Jews were carted off with the intention of fencing them in a nightmare hidden from view to die from exposure and neglect. In 1894, African Americans fled economic devastation, flocked to Washington and starved to death at the foot of the capitol.(19) Thousands of Americans died from hunger across the country at once and without reason.
The warning signs were apparent long before 1893. This fight is old. In a speech to railroad employees in Terre Haute, Indiana on October 27th, 1888, the historic labor agitator, Eugene Debs, indicted the nation for having ushered the arrival of the Era of The Tramp.(20)
. . . From 1873 until 1878 was a period of universal gloom in this country. Wages, under the high protective tariff, mind you, had gone down and down and down until workingmen were getting, in many departments of industry, but a dollar a day for their work. You remember the year 1873, you working men. You remember all of the troubles in the East. You all remember that there was a continual reduction of wages. The men submitted to the utmost point of endurance.
. . . In 1873 engineers were getting an average of $70 a month, firemen $45, brakemen $45, and switchmen $45. In 1877, when the strike originated, engineers were getting $58, or a reduction of $12 a month; firemen $32 a month, or a reduction of $13 a month; brakemen were getting $35 a month, or a reduction of $10 a month; switchmen were getting $35, or a reduction of $10 a month. There is no reasonable man within the sound of my voice who will dispute the fact that the time had come to protest against any further reduction of wages.
. . . I recollect very distinctly that from 1873 to 1877 during the high tariff reign was a period of universal gloom. Factories, mills, and shops shut up and shut down and the sheriff’s hammer beat funeral marches everywhere. During that period the tramp era was inaugurated. There never was a tramp in the United States previous to 1873.(21)
The U.S. economy experienced regular deflation, a reduction in the circulation of viable currency between 1834 and 1912, during which government passed a series of numismatic laws that depreciated silver, or entirely removed the apparatus by which the economy could renew itself. The history of U.S. coin is a history of government twisting, crippling and mutilating the economy in the interests of Capital. In 1893, Capital was in the business of railroads, hoarding gold and manipulating governments. The inflationary silver economy threatened not just Capital’s profits, it threatened its hegemony over world affairs. Capitalists are incensed when anyone dares threaten Capital’s dominance by defending their economic sovereignty, much less a culture of self-employed “radicals” across the Western Frontier who are in the first trimester of sociocultural gestation.
Capitalists manipulated government to fatten themselves on the sacrifices of others over generations, culminating in catastrophic social events engineered to inflict unforseen harm across the American quilt. Capitalists stifle innovation(22) by waging an economic, spiritual and political war against their apparent neighbors. Society increasingly emphasizes upward mobility while wealth disparity yawns open like a Mariana Trench, sending fissures throughout society, inflaming passions and inviting propagandists who feed fuel to the fire, most of whom are receiving kickbacks from the same degenerates greasing our so-called representatives’ palms. When cornered, World Capital squirms and gnashes its teeth before blindly inviting further catastrophe in a desperate bid to deflect from their crimes with more carnage.
An overseas economic bust in 1891 is often depicted as a genesis story for The Engineered Starvation of 1893. Capitalists dream up the most elaborate fictions to dress down in drab language and present as irrefutable evidence of whatever indemnifies them of wrongdoing, especially in the midst of a crisis of their own devise, often brazenly and almost giddily accusing their most obvious political enemies of the dangers they recklessly and wantonly unleashed upon the Earth. Hitler merely emulated what had been unfolding on U.S. soil since the colonists made a gift of blankets riddled with smallpox for the Native Americans, since slavers shackled a people in cages and soldiers conducted forced migrations. There’s ample evidence of the ruinous consequences of Capitalism on the world’s indigenous, on working people and people of color. Racism is a product of Capitalism.
Capitalism’s function is oppression; its method is deceit; its product is inequality.
When Capitalists succeed in convincing a segment of the working class to violently defend Capital by viewing their neighbors as the enemy, they engage in fascism. The coverup following The Engineered Starvation of 1893, the notion that Capitalism is a demonstrable good rather than a scourge upon humanity is the original big lie.(23) The United States in 1896 resembled The Weimar Republic, but saying so is disingenuous: the Weimar Republic resembled late nineteenth century United States. The American People are an aberration to have survived in any recognizable manner after 244 years of unmitigated class warfare. Uncle Sam slogs onward like some tragic hero who persists in climbing a mountain with a summit that remains eternally out of reach while under constant attack by unseen assailants.(24)
The faint memory of economic prosperity projected on Millenials as children was the dim, final hum of a fading prosperity, precariously negotiated by The Left in the twilight of their lives, which wasn’t fully appreciated until they were gone, or on their deathbeds. We owe them a debt of gratitude. If it weren’t for them, there would’ve been no New Deal, and if there had been no New Deal, there would’ve been no war machine waiting for The Third Reich, and the halcyon days of the 50s and 60s would never have arrived. If it weren’t for The American Left, women wouldn’t be able to vote, senators would be chosen by state legislatures and government would be unable to tax the rich on their incomes.
If The Left hadn’t been genocided in 1893, The United States could’ve forged a path to an era of democratic pluralism across the western hemisphere that would’ve endured for ages. Capitalists wanted to hurt The Left financially and politically, so they hurt them bodily for generations. They coordinated their diminutive number to command a vast empire in the form of loot, and hired company men to escort withdrawals in gold bars on transatlantic voyages to be deposited in vaults overseas, mainly in London. “Gold was going abroad freely, and banks were finding it important to be more conservative in making discounts as well as collateral or stock market loans.”(25) Once the retraction in liquidity was seen in market, presses plied the people with fear. Cleveland was inaugurated as president and the first meaningful act of his second term was a pressure campaign to twist the arm of Congress and demonetize silver. Not only did he and the fifty-third United States Congress fail to address the sudden retraction of gold from the economy, they responded to a house fire by spraying the neighbor’s houses with gasoline after having rigged the neighborhood with dynamite.
The resulting economic blight in The United States reached apocalyptic proportions. In response, Cleveland encouraged Congress to sell bonds and added gratuitously to the deficit. After multiple rounds of debt auctioneering and not one sign of actual improvement, the American People demonstrated a degree of agitation that hadn’t been seen since The Civil War. Fallout was immediate.
A shadowy, international banking cartel sent J.P. Morgan as messenger to the oval office. In exchange for the gold bars they removed from the economy after having resorted to such drastic measures as the complete shuttering of U.S. manufacturing operations, the syndicate demanded promises to pay, bonds sold at a premium rate of interest, United States sovereign debt in the hands of a group of unknown investors from around the globe. Wall Street responded by selling bonds at market for legal tender that could be flipped for more gold, which allowed for the recapitulation of the grift. During every revolution of the con, Capitalists skimmed a bar or two from the top for their wives to start charities designed to encourage formerly self-employed tradesmen to consign themselves to wage labor.
Self-employment is Capitalism’s limit. The American Left envisioned a Cooperative Commonwealth(26) that pursues an economic state of parity best understood as full self-employment, but self-employment is untenable when there’s a dearth of money in circulation. Capitalists don’t want us to engage in commerce; they want us to consume their bullshit.
As we strengthen democracy and approach full self-employment, we depart Capitalist and Communist wage labor, and distance ourselves from Republicanism: Capitalism as Fascism in its purest form. That may not be how voters in The Republican Party view Republicanism, but that’s how Plato viewed Republicanism, and he wrote the book on the subject. The American Left understood this better than any adherent of Marxism. Their demand was always for more self-employment, more voting rights, more commerce. Rather than hurt the economy, silver had been helping the economy.
The year immediately preceding the financial crisis of 1893 did not present symptoms or indication of approaching panic which generalizations from the history of preceding business crises in the United States had declared should be observable at such a time.(27)
This is remarkable considering a period of “fraudulent banking methods had resulted in heavy failures, and precipitated a crash in May, 1884,” caused by they who had fallen into the “pernicious practice of dating bills ahead” and over-extending credits, inviting two years of “enforced economy and recuperation,” Arthur’s playful euphemism for some kind of Hell. “Beginning in 1887, there followed three years of moderate revival,” which ended abruptly in 1890 with the “bankruptcy of Portugal,” the “collapse of the boom in Argentine securities,” a “puncture of the so-called Australian boom,” and in France, “speculation in tin, copper, and sugar, assumed such vast proportions as to affect and therefore attract attention of the public in all parts of the civilized world.”(28)
Taking into account what was happening throughout the country in these booming years prior to the crash of 1893 one can readily appreciate how valuable might have been a vigorous and constant exposition before the public of the dangers in undue expansion . . . There was great danger in discounting the future with so much enthusiasm and daring.(29)
Capitalists were at their old game of greedily grasping for more at the cost of revealing their bloody hand, but “railway securities” bottomed out in 1891 before they rebounded,(30) and railroads were Capitalist playthings: the “big tech” of their day and age. The Bank of England bailed out The House of Barings, the ostensible retainer of a significant tranche of over-extended credit that resulted in an embarrassing and alarming, international monetary failure.
Great Britain was feeling the pinch, not only of Australian, Argentine, and South African financial embarrassments, but of decreased purchases from those countries, as well as from Chili, Uruguay, and Peru . . . and the probable gold requirements of Austria, France, and England, served to intensify anxiety on the part of those who kept themselves abreast of the situation.(31)
This may have encouraged overseas investors in American securities to precipitously abandon stock in large quantities, but Capitalists never seek the root causes of economic “downturns,” “recessions” or “depressions.” If they did, they would be forced to sketch a portrait of themselves, their estates and the many crimes they’ve committed. Capitalists find two dramatic incidents suspended in relative chronological proximity to one another, draw an arbitrary line between them, equal sign, sad face, and that’s the extent of Capitalist sophistication. The rest is wall dressing.
In 1893 those two “dramatic incidents suspended in relative chronological proximity to one another” were the resumption of the silver economy in the United States and gold in transatlantic transit to England. There’s no connection between the two, but since Capital has always agreed to shield the general public from the cancerous, inflamed, suppurating, rancid confines of its inner workings, the sycophantic yes-men of Capital have perpetually plied the people with fictions, a tactic they’ve employed for centuries. Arthur Clark Stevens describes the economy immediately prior to “the crash in industrial securities in May, 1893”(32) as a place of “wonderful prosperity.”
A summary in a recent publication of what have been regarded as essential, underlying conditions of approaching panic enumerates wonderful prosperity (as indicated by numerous enterprises and schemes), a rise in the prices of commodities, of land and of houses, an active demand for workmen, lower rates of interest, a general taste for speculation (“in order to grow rich at once”), growing luxury leading to excessive expenditures, “and a very large amount of discounts and loans and bank-notes, and very small reserve in specie and legal tender notes, and poor and decreasing deposits.”(33)
The idea that a bimetallic economy was the cause of panic was met with skepticism and incredulity by much of the public. Stevens crunches the numbers and his findings consistently yield the same result: bank failures followed a predictable pattern of increasing disparity between the value of loans and deposits until 1893. 119 days after Cleveland delivered a fallacious sales pitch to Congress with the intent to demonetize silver and 33 days after silver was effectively demonetized, Cleveland’s Comptroller of The Currency acknowledged the economy’s prior economic health with a defeatist, apologetic tone and obvious deference to the interests of Wall Street.
The financial situation of the past month was not the result of either a lack in the volume of currency, of which there is now a plethora, or a want of elasticity in the present system of issuing it, but arose from a loss of confidence on the part of the people in the solvency of the distinctively monetary institutions of the country. It is worthy of note and of serious consideration that at the very time the scarcity of currency for business purposes was at its height the country’s volume of currency was increasing the most rapidly, and the amount per capita was much larger than in any recent year.(36)
The only “people” who “lost confidence” in “the solvency of the distinctively monetary institutions of the country” were Capitalists. The Left didn’t abandon the nation for profit. They had yet to reach a stature of economic maturity that would grant them equal access to the presses with their economic, political, cultural and spiritual opposition. The Capitalist strategy was to blindside The Left before they realized economic parity. When Capitalists say, “competition,” they mean, domination, but when Congress wrote the word “competition” in The Clayton Antitrust Act of 1914, they meant, fairness. Chronic misuse of language invariably leads to disastrous, long-term consequences. Capitalists have extolled this charm to maintain unquestioned dominance in the War on The Commons since they first sailed West across the Atlantic. Why build a library of propaganda from scratch in a bid for world domination when you can convince everyone that the library of propaganda surrounding world domination describes freedom. Capitalists make a hobby out of convincing us that our enemies are our friends and our friends are our enemies.
Capitalists have been intentionally distorting language since before they were called Capitalists, since they were still understood to be what they are: traffickers. John Locke wrote rationalizations of mercantilist cruelty for nobles to ease their conscience while he enabled them to finance murder, rape and plunder. Capitalists are the original slave traders. When they “compete,” they enslave. It’s all they’ve ever known. Abject cruelty has brought Capitalists great individual prosperity and they’re loathe to miss it.
Grover Cleveland was their kept man.
Cleveland took the position which he was to defend grimly throughout his career. He admitted within his defenses the interests of creditors, businessmen, and wage-earners, but he had no room there really for the interests of the farmers and the producers of raw materials in the West who were contributing so much to the development of the country in his own time.(37)
The Left was twisting, squeezing and altogether battering the establishment by attempting to infiltrate every conceivable avenue of power. There was obvious strength in their almost liquid adaptability, but they lacked the time and resources to organize an apparatus that could effectively shatter the Democrat-Republican duopoly that consolidated soon after The Civil War. The self-consuming, self-aggrandizing, self-congratulatory character of Capitalism eliminates any possibility for humility, and in order to swallow that cognitive gem whole, the Capitalist must either be born sociopathic or ritualistically perform a psychological auto-labotomization by force of will in regular intervals during the lunar calendar. Arguments had been made to allow the cooperative economy surrounding silver to prosper in conjunction with Capitalism, but “the attempt to establish the bimetallic standard by international agreement had failed.”(38)
It was class war, but a war — especially class war — can go unnoticed when one is born into it, so what we think of as the landscape, the status quo or “way things are” is actually a class war unraveling before our eyes. World War Two put the Left to sleep and helped the working class forget. McCarthy’s Red Scare should’ve tipped us off, but Capitalists were at their old game of holding their cards close while red-baiting the opposition, and what remained of The Left was waging war on another front. Jim Crow all but imprisoned an entire people in their own homes across The South and few Left institutions remained, lest you count unions, which would be a mistake.
The Left may have comprised the bulwark of our original unionized workforce, but so-called bargaining rights under the lock and key of a bureau of easily corruptible middle men that closely resemble other inaccessible and opaque political structures throughout history was never the product of self-employed tradesmen and farmers. The only union they cared about was the original union: the union between the self-employed and wage workers. The American Left who carried the flame of liberty out of The Revolution and into Kansas, then Virginia in 1859, evolved into a socio-cultural and religio-political movement that was self-aware and consciously sowing seeds of independence and cooperation in the minds of men, women and children across the country, down into Central and South America and further, across The Pacific into Australasia. They knew the value of a thing, how to make do and make miracles from the little life offered them. They focused their efforts over generations: carefully and methodically working to forge and strengthen their communities to herald the dawn of The Cooperative Commonwealth.(40)
They were expected perhaps to work out their salvation with their individualistic inheritance from the first pioneers. Instead, they took collective action that Cleveland never comprehended.(41)
Rexford Tugwell describes the Engineered Starvation of 1893 as “the first of the general sinking spells since big business had begun to take over the economy and to dictate its policies.”(42) The brightest on The Left saw the writing on the wall; they saw it in red, bolded and writ large across the sky, and it foretold of a trouble “with no clear resolution . . . in a country at peace and in the midst of expansion.”(43) In 1894, Mr. Walter McKay, The Colorado Commissioner of Labor Statistics described “the widespread devastation being wrought in the State through the prostration of an industry which has filled our otherwise solitary mountains with thousands of our bravest and most stalwart citizens.” Walter McKay took it upon himself “to ascertain as practicable the effects of the infamous attack upon silver” by “the uncrowned kings of Wall Street.”(44)
Grover Cleveland veritably confessed to the crime.
In his own words the line of battle was “drawn between the forces of safe currency and those of silver monometallism.”(45) On that front Grover Cleveland fought to the end, giving no quarter.(46)
The Left may have found themselves dumbfounded by the sheer Biblical scale of the Capitalist assault on their economy and way of life, but they weren’t unprepared. A “ceaseless stream of silver coinage threatened to overflow the land.”(47) The Left intended to demonstrate their resiliency.
An obstreperous Congress, dominated by Westerners and Southerners, debated a free-coinage bill, demanded an explanation of the Treasury’s dealings with banks in New York, and in other ways discomfited the Administration. . . (48)
If The United States had sided with silver at the end of the nineteenth century in the ongoing class war, the nation would’ve been at odds with most the industrialized world, but her people would be sitting pretty and had already forged alliances across the western hemisphere. Over half of U.S. reserves could’ve been replenished with silver bullion,(49) more with sales of bonds to the public redeemable only in gold, but Cleveland never considered salvation a viable option. The interests of World Capital were more important to him than the interests of the American people.
Congress, disorganized and embittered by the struggle over the silver law, swayed by the feeling of many that the distress of the Treasury afforded an excellent chance to establish the silver standard.(50)
In Darling’s estimation, this was not only possible, it was practicable, but “even before taking office Cleveland had listened to conservative advices and had publicly opposed the compulsory coinage of silver into dollars.”(51)
. . . in spring 1894, the House passed a bill sponsored by Congressman Richard P. Bland of Missouri for issuing coins to cover the seigniorage accumulated in the Treasury. Using the seigniorage in this way would give the government more silver dollars; but also, it would further threaten the gold reserve.(52)
The reserve was intact and intended for the reimbursement of greenbacks; the reputation, status and power of gold was at stake, not the reserve. Grover Cleveland was incapable of imagining a world with a functioning economy, rich with commerce, that emphasizes real equality of opportunity by investing “directly into communities”(54) previously “financed by foreign investments”(55) with “public funds . . . divorced from private affairs”(56) to save lives by replacing Capitalist wage-slavery with the cooperative economy on The Left. It was a simple matter for government(57) to change the gold-to-silver ratio, which was fixed by government, but doing so would’ve required Cleveland to think about the world from a wildly different perspective.
Although enthusiasts for the bimetallic theory might still declare that no invidious comparison would be made if the Government freely used silver at a stipulated par with gold, to him human nature was unchangeable; the choice of dearer or cheaper money would drive the dearer money into hiding(58) despite the fiat of the Government.(59)
The only nature that refused to change was the sociopathic predilections of the Capitalist. Rather than welcome a solution to a pressing need for commerce, Capitalists held government hostage. On November 1st, 1893, Congress passed An act to repeal a part of an act approved July fourteenth, eighteen hundred and ninety, entitled “An act directing the purchase of silver bullion and the issue of Treasury notes thereon, and for other purposes.” The act officially demonetized silver by discontinuing the resumption of silver bullion purchases in exchange for legal tender. In order to drum up enough support for such an obvious crime, Capitalists did what they do best: they engaged in deceit. Typically, a hubbub bubbles up in a boiler room(60) for some money trust in Manhattan, but Arthur Stevens, who lived the experience and chronicled it as it was happening, is keen to point a finger at the administration.
It was on June 13 that the Secretary of Treasury issued a statement bearing on the widespread discussion of the operation of the Sherman silver act(61) in which he pointed out that, if the policy of the silver purchase law should be continued and the Treasury department compelled to issue bonds or otherwise the interest-bearing public debt, this would be the purpose of procuring gold with which to pay for silver bullion under the act of 1890.(62)
The 100 million dollar reserve limit on gold was chosen as a rough estimate of the cost of sustaining commerce during the Civil War,(63) which was made possible by the abolitionist Salmon P. Chase, figurehead of the American Left, who served as Abraham Lincoln’s Secretary of Treasury. By facilitating the creation of the greenback, without which The Union couldn’t pay Union soldiers, Salmon P. Chase advanced the interests of the abolitionists who joined the flailing Whigs(64) to form the Republican Party, an unfortunate choice of name decided by Alvin Bovay,(65) who denounced The Republicans 20 years after he founded their party in the quaint confines of Ripon, Wisconsin.
Capitalists didn’t give a damn who fought or died for who or what in The Civil War, so long as they could profit from it. The 100 million in gold bars locked away in the Treasury was an object of their affection, but it was promised to another. Quite simply, they wanted it, and in order to accomplish that, they would perform an Ocean’s Eleven-style bank heist of genocidal proportions.
(1) Tugwell, Rexford Guy. Grover Cleveland. Macmillan: New York. 1968. Chapter 30, page 256.
(2) Tugwell, Rexford Guy . . . Chapter 30, page 257.
(3) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena of the Panic in The United States in 1893.” The Quarterly Journal of Economics. Vol. 8, №2. Jan 1894. Page 125.
(4) Stevens, Arthur Clark. The Cyclopaedia or Fraternities: a compilation of existing authentic information and the results of original investigation as to the origin, derivation, founders, development, aims, emblems, character, and personnel of more than six hundred secret societies in the United States. New York: E.B. Treat and Company, 1907.
(5) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena . . .” Page 144.
(6) Tugwell, Rexford Guy . . . Chapter 28, page 237.
(7) Staff. “Professor Willard C. Fisher. Was Prominent Economist and in Authority on Labor Problems.” New York Times. 19 Apr 1933.
(8) Cognitive dissonance.
(9) Peter Cooper, William Hope Harvey, Albert C. Stevens, Willard C. Fisher, Carlos Closson Jr., Arthur Darling, Charles August Lindbergh Sr. and Rexford Tugwell, or The Greenback Party, Farmer’s Alliance, People’s Party, Silver Party, Liberty Party, Jobless Party and Non-Partisan League, for starters, but Peter Cooper most of all.
(10) Fisher, Willard. “Coin and His Critics — review of Harvey’s Coin and Laughlin’s Facts about Money. 1896.” The Quarterly Journal of Economics. Vol. 10, №2, Jan 1896. Pages 188 thru 189.
(11) 2nd Congress of The United States of America. An Act establishing a Mint, and regulating the Coins of the United Slates. 2 Apr 1792.
(12) United States Constitution. Article 1, Section 10.
(13) 2nd Congress . . . 2 Apr 1792.
(14) 23rd Congress of The United States of America. An Act regulating the value of certain foreign gold coins within the United States. 28 Jun 1834.
(15) 42nd Congress of The United States. An Act revising and amending the Laws relative to the Mints, Assay-offices, and Coinage of the United States. 12 Feb 1873.
(16) The silver dollar does not equal a dollar. The dollar is largely symbolic, an abstract unit of exchange agreed upon as a matter of course because the government accepts it as valid.
(17) 32nd Congress of The United States. An Act revising and amending the Laws relative to the Mints, Assay-offices, and Coinage of the United States. 16 Feb 1853.
(18) 51st Congress of The United States. An act directing the purchase of silver bullion and the issue of Treasury notes thereon, and for other purposes.14 Jul 1890.
(19) Closson, Carlos C. . . . Pages 183.
(20) Eugene Debs recollected the “universal gloom” that followed The Crime of 73 in a speech to support the Democratic nominee: Grover Cleveland.
(21) Staff. “Debs on Harrison.” Terre Haute Weekly Gazette. 1 Nov, 1888. Page 1, Part 2.
(22) Innovation is what most people probably mean when they say, “competition.”
(23) “The big lie” was a phrase coined by Goebbels, Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda, to describe a rhetorical fallacy made possible only with access to a vast quantity of resources. The Big Lie is the manufacture of so many lies at once and over time, in so many places and covering so many facets of life, the lies sketch the impression of a false reality in the mind of the unsuspecting consumer.
(24) See “Mercer,” from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
(25) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena . . .” Page 124.
(26) Gourevich, Alex. From Slavery to The Cooperative Commonwealth. Cambridge University Press: 2015.
(27) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena . . .” Page 117.
(28) Ibid . . . Page 119 thru 120.
(29) Darling, Arthur B . . . Page 147.
(30) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena . . .” Page 121.
(31) Ibid . . . Page 124.
(32) Ibid . . . Page 118.
(33) Ibid . . . Page 117.
(34) Ibid . . . Page 122.
(35) Ibid . . . Pages 119.
(36) Ibid . . . Pages 139.
(37) Darling, Arthur B . . . Page 146.
(39) Right institutions tend to be socio-political and religio-cultural.
(40) Gourevich, Alex . . .
(41) Darling, Arthur B . . . Page 146.
(42) Tugwell, Rexford Guy . . . Chapter 25, page 202.
(44) Closson, Carlos C. Jr. The Unemployed In American Cities. The Quarterly Journal of Economics. Vol. 8, №2 Jan 1894. Page 207 and 211.
(45) Projection, tho an obvious fallacy, is a tactic favored by Capitalists and fascists. Grover Cleveland accused “soft money” advocates and “silverites” of attempting to corner the market on currency while he bankrupted a growing middle class with help from pockets of Congress and every financier on Wall Street to demonetize silver. “Soft money” congressmen discussed the establishment of a “silver standard,” but only after Capitalists betrayed the country by laying siege to the economy.
(46) Darling, Arthur B . . . Pages 154.
(47) Ibid . . . Page 146.
(48) Ibid . . . Page 146.
(49) Tugwell, Rexford Guy . . . Chapter 25, page 229.
(50) Darling, Arthur B . . . Page 151 thru 152.
(51) Ibid . . . Pages 146.
(52) The Government purchased bullion for less than the value of the coins made from it. The difference between the value of the coins and the value of the bullion was called seigniorage.
(53) Tugwell, Rexford Guy . . . Chapter 25, page 229.
(54) Darling, Arthur B . . . Pages 147 thru 148.
(58) Capitalists hide while they send company men — pinkertons, cops and fascists — to fight their wars for them.
(59) Darling, Arthur B . . . Pages 154.
(60) An office where hype is generated through back-channels to manipulate markets.
(61) Fifty-third Congress of The United States. An act to repeal a part of an act approved July fourteenth, eighteen hundred and ninety, entitled “An act directing the purchase of silver bullion and the issue of Treasury notes thereon, and for other purposes. 1 Nov 1893.
(62) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena . . .” Page 131.
(63) Stevens, Albert C. “Analysis of the Phenomena . . .” Page 125.
“. . . this was offset by the prospect that the government would be compelled to sell bonds to buy gold to maintain the $100,000,000 treasury gold reserve, with which to guarantee the payment of the greenback treasury notes, and by domestic trade conditions calling for the shipment of funds from New York to the West.”
Darling, Arthur B . . . Page 149 thru 150.
“And as a matter of fact there were already in circulation sufficient greenbacks to withdraw the gold reserve from the Treasury without the aid of the notes of 1890.”
Darling, Arthur B . . . Page 150 thru 151.
“. . . the Treasury had to use gold for current expenses, even dipping into the $100,000,000 of gold guarded by the statute of 1882 and reserved by long practise for the redemption of greenbacks.”
(64) Formerly, The Federalists.
(65) Bovay later joined the Prohibition Party, which would wrest the religio-political sphere from The Left by flirting with Suffragettism at the dawn of the twentieth century. The flame of abolition was doused in the prohibition of alcohol, which even the most chaste among the Left would’ve roundly refuted.
[This work is licensed under a creative commons attribution-sharealike 4.0 international license. Originally published in December, 2020 by Keith M. Judge in Chicago. This is a free culture license! If you like what you’ve read and would like to support the author, subscribe at Patreon or Substack!]