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Monetary metals suppression is as old as the hills

Section: Daily Dispatches

3:45p Saturday, May 16, 2009

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold (and Silver):

A GATA Dispatch a few days ago was fascinated by silver market analyst Ted Butler's new essay, "A Presidential Bombshell," recounting that in 1965, as the United States demonetized silver, President Lyndon B. Johnson pledged to rig the silver market so that Gresham's Law might be defied and bad money might not drive out good money. (See

But soon after that dispatch went into the e-mail, a friend advised that another longtime writer about the silver market, Charles Savoie, had sought some years earlier to call attention to Johnson's market-rigging pledge. (An archive of Savoie's work can be found at David Morgan's Silver Investor site here:

Though it includes much more politics than GATA's charter allows and flies off on dozens of conspiratorial tangents unnecessary to GATA's objectives, Savoie's work deserves acknowledgement, for its own sake and for establishing two bigger points.

The first is simply biblical: "The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done; and there is nothing new under the sun." Or as Harry Truman said more plainly, "The only thing new is the history you don't know."

That is, the proofs of the gold and silver price suppression scheme are so numerous and constitute such a vast public record that even some conscientious students of the scheme can be surprised now and then.

Some of us in GATA have called gold's enduring centrality to the world financial system "the secret knowledge of the universe." Once someone begins to grasp this, there is no going back; one begins to live in a world quite different from the one inhabited by most other people. But as is suggested by the details of history that are constantly being recovered, rather than "the secret knowledge" gold's enduring centrality might better be called the lost knowledge.

There have been occasional attempts to codify this lost knowledge, perhaps most recently by the late Ferdinand Lips with his book "Gold Wars," published seven years ago. (See This knowledge is either ignored or actively suppressed by the mainstream financial media and even by some market analysts who often comment on the gold market and who thus may be badly motivated. But it is starting to leak out.

And that is the other important point arising from our learning that Savoie got first to President Johnson's pledge to rig the silver market: Discovering is one thing, publicizing is another, and the former is often little good without the latter.

Phoenicians, Chinese, Vikings, Irish, and others seem to have sailed to the Western Hemisphere long before Columbus did. But the Great Navigator's predecessors were not much interested in claiming credit for it, or else they lacked a public relations agency like that of Columbus back in Madrid, an agency backed by the crown, an agency almost as good as GATA's PR agency in London. (See Pelham Public Relations Ltd. at

In its 10 years GATA has done a fair amount of original research on the gold price suppression scheme, but much if not most of what GATA has publicized was discovered or rediscovered by others and simply brought to GATA's attention. GATA has, perhaps, simply unified and improved the publicity mechanism a bit and combined it with some agitation, in the unfortunate absence of such work by gold-mining and gold-banking organizations, which in recent decades have lost all relevance to the metal's monetary purposes. Indeed, perhaps most interesting about a review of Savoie's archive is his quotation of comments made by gold industry organizations 60 and 70 years ago, comments incisively complaining about the policies undertaken by governments and central banks to suppress the monetary metals.

While, for various reasons, those industry organizations have gone silent about those policies since then, it remains an old, old story, getting older still the more it is ignored or denied.

The political struggle behind the suppression of gold and the suppression of the knowledge of gold is just as old. It is the old struggle between the producing and financial classes, a struggle that from time to time has been the foremost political issue in the United States, as it was in the 1830s and in the years between 1896 and 1912. With luck it might become the foremost political issue again soon.

In 1896 the last great political acknowledgement of this struggle was begun by William Jennings Bryan. Addressing and accusing the malevolent and manipulative financial powers of his day as a presidential campaign began, Bryan declared:

"We say to you that you have made too limited in its application the definition of a businessman. The man who is employed for wages is as much a businessman as his employer. The attorney in a country town is as much a businessman as the corporation counsel in a great metropolis. The merchant at the crossroads store is as much a businessman as the merchant of New York. The farmer who goes forth in the morning and toils all day, begins in the spring and toils all summer, and by the application of brain and muscle to the natural resources of this country creates wealth is as much a businessman as the man who goes upon the Board of Trade and bets upon the price of grain. The miners who go a thousand feet into the earth or climb 2,000 feet upon the cliffs and bring forth from their hiding places the precious metals to be poured in the channels of trade are as much businessmen as the few financial magnates who in a back room corner the money of the world.

"We come to speak for this broader class of businessmen."

For the time being, in the absence of others who might do it better, GATA would speak for this class too, giving full credit to those who, like Savoie and Lips and so many others, helped to pass the secret knowledge along. But if this knowledge is to prevail and save the world from the ever-more outrageous depredations of the financial class, it can be secret no longer and no one can be allowed to get proprietary about it. It simply has to be shared -- no, proclaimed -- with credit if possible, but without credit is fine too.

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

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