Book Review: The Banking Swindle (Updated with Interview)
Left: Kerry Bolton
Kerry Bolton’s ‘the Banking Swindle’ is a brilliant expose of the fight against the Money Power in modern history. Not only does Bolton authoritatively compare a number of important financial systems of the past, he frames the debate of the twenties and thirties of the last century. In doing so, he connects us to our forebears and gives important clues on the way the struggle should be waged.
Kerry Bolton, Ph.D., Th.D., born in 1956, hails from New Zealand and is a prolific writer and political activist. He has written on the occult, mass immigration and the politics of the Right. The Right to Bolton is the original conservatism, based in God, Nation, Family and, most importantly, monetary reform. It seems, from a distance, that he is somewhat disenchanted with the Right because they have forgotten the all importance of the monetary issue.
Michael Hoffman faces the same problems: many ‘conservative’ groups and organizations consider his ‘Usury in Christendom’ anathema.
Bolton asked me to write a foreword for his book and this is an excellent opportunity to thank him for the invitation because I more than fully support this book. It’s a brilliant and timely effort for several reasons.
In the first place: it’s a short and fast paced read. Only 188 pages, including introduction, three forewords, and the index. Modern, accessible English, a spacious font so not very many words per page. It can be read in a couple of hours.
It starts with a short introduction of Modern History, rewritten to show how the bankers managed to conquer Europe via Holland and Britain. This serves as an excellent primer for those looking for a heads up on these fundamental issues in their reeducation.
He describes how the current financial system came to be and what problems it brings.
But where the book really takes off is his vivid description of the public discourse of the thirties in reaction to the Great Depression. It transpires that very concrete opposition to the financial system itself was universal throughout the industrialized nations. Social Credit activists were active throughout the west. The dominions saw major Social Credit movements. But also other financial systems were both promoted and, what is more, even implemented.
New Zealand, for instance, implemented financial policies that were very similar to those of Hitler’s Germany. A large scale social housing project financed with State Credit solved 75% of unemployment during the Great Depression. This iconic project has disappeared in a memory hole. Canada also printed its own Government money from the mid thirties up to the early seventies. Here is an eye-opening account of the Canadian economy with Government money.
The level of public involvement in these discussions seem to have been huge. They were talking banking and monetary reform in pubs and on street corners, all over the West.
In Britain itself there were the ‘Green Shirts for Social Credit’, started by John Hargrave, who had met C.H. Douglas in 1923. The Green Shirts kicked off in 1930 and 1932 Hargrave realized that nothing could be done through Parliament and that a fully devoted agitation was necessary. Bolton:
“Hargrave advocated a militant campaign that would break the media blackout. The Green Shirts took to the streets on marches, behind drums and banners, held street corner meetings, and sold newspapers on the street, delivering the Social Credit message in a cogent manner. Facing the violent opposition of the Left, they were noted for their discipline in the face of provocation. They were also noted for throwing green painted bricks through the windows of banks and using the consequent court cases to publicize their views.”
Bolton analyzes the struggle for monetary reform in all major western nations, including Father Coughlin, who at his peak was followed by 40 million Americans, and Japan.
I must say that this comprehensive overview was actually eye opening for me. Such large scale agitation for- and implementation of real monetary reform on such a level, I never really realized what kind of trouble the Money Power faced back then.
It also shows that the system may not be quite so unassailable as it often looks. True, while today’s depression is probably not much less worse than 80 years ago, its consequences have been much milder. Millions of people actually starved or were close to starvation back then. However we may feel about the much dreaded well fare state, it has prevented that kind of mass suffering during this crunch. On the other hand: we can also be sure that this is a vital part of the Money Power’s calculations this time round. Because hunger is a powerful motivator and the usurers have learned to sedate us to the nastiest side effects of our hidden slavery.
Another interesting aspect of the book is its analysis of a number of financial systems that were either launched during times of economic hardship as a result of scarcity of money, or states that were simply not (yet) part of the banks’ control grid. For instance Czarist Russia, much hated by the Rothschilds for their intransigence. Russia was modernizing rapidly in the last decades before New York’s coup d’état in 1917. And it was financing this modernization without the usurers. This, undoubtedly, was the prime reason for the ‘revolution’.
Or how about the Greybacks? I never heard of them. Apparently they were actually real debt free notes, as opposed to the interest-bearing bonds backed Greenback, printed by the South to finance the war. As always, the money system in use is a great hint as to the nature of the real dynamics behind the scenes. I’m not well enough versed in US history to come to any conclusions, but Bolton makes a very plausible case that the Confederacy was a real rebellion and that they were cut off from bankster loans.
Just as the British inflated the Continental, George Washington’s debt free unit, the Union destroyed the Greyback through counterfeiting.
The Banking Swindle is in many respects an effort to reconnect the Right to its roots of opposition against the Money Power. Although, after reading the book, I understand why Bolton considers the classical populist resistance against Money Power the Right, in this day and age this Left-Right paradigm has been so utterly discredited that I wonder whether it is useful to cling to the notion of the Right. The Right today is associated with Capitalism and the Banking Swindle actually quite clearly describes how the anti-usury activists were clearly seen as a third way, next to the great Marxist-Capitalist dichotomy of the day.
Furthermore, conservatism itself is in many ways outdated. Exoteric Christianity is hardly acceptable to many very spiritually inclined people and its universalism makes it very difficult to cooperate with. As Wayne Walton puts it: religion divides, spirituality connects. New words are necessary for old truisms. Each new era needs its own paradigms. Not the underlying truths change, but the people looking at them do. Reconnecting to our roots and traditions does not mean reliving the past.
People in the Truth Movement are a pretty heterogeneous bunch. The kind of awareness that it represents and which is now influencing more and more people cannot be called ‘conservative’, even though personally I nowadays feel very connected to real conservatism.
But having said that: the real issue is how the Banking Swindle exposes both the scale and the nature of a truly international, diverse and very powerful monetary reform movement. Post war propaganda and guilt by association have labeled these movements as ‘fascist’, but many of them were not and fascism itself of course is ridiculously demonized. These movements have been discredited and marginalized and Bolton does a wonderful job of rehabilitating them and showing their profound importance.
This is exactly the kind of inspiration and insight we need to build on.