Bill Still Announces Run for Libertarian Party Presidential Nomination

Bill Still announced today on KTKK Radio Station out of Salt Lake City, Utah, that he would be seeking the nomination of the Libertarian Party for President. He claims to have support from delegated out of Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Utah. This article details some of his economic positions.

Still is known as a proponent of monetary reform and an opponent of the Federal Reserve and fractional reserve banking. Still wrote and directed a popular documentary on the subject called MoneyMasters in 1996 and The Secret of Oz in 2010–both documentaries can be found on Youtube, receiving hundreds of thousands of views.

Still attended the Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania’s State Convention in 2011 and addressed the convention on the topic of monetary reform and fractional reserve banking. We will update this post when we have more information on his campaign. Bill Still is a former newspaper editor and publisher. He has written for USA Today, The Saturday Evening Post, the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, OMNI magazine, and produced the syndicated radio program, Health News.

80 thoughts on “Bill Still Announces Run for Libertarian Party Presidential Nomination

  1. George Phillies

    His monentary reform is not Ron Paul’s monentary reform. Monentizing the national debt and — if I understood him correctly — making it the wrong path for the Federal government to borrow as opposed to printing money are a different reform.

  2. Mark Hilgenberg

    He is far from a kook; he has the most watched documentary in the history of the internet.

    His documentary the Secret of Oz is an award winner and it documents the history of monetary reform. It also exposes lot of bogus monetary reform quotes that have misled the movement for centuries.

    His proposals are the best of all worlds. He wants to End the Fed, legalize gold and silver as money, legalize competing currency and phase out fractional reserve banking. He will also pay of our debt as they come due with debt free currency.

    The more I study his information, the more I realize that just jumping from gold to debt based currency and back again, always leaves our fate in the hands of the bankers.

    This takes our power back.

  3. Trent Hill Post author

    “He is far from a kook; he has the most watched documentary in the history of the internet. ”

    Can you prove this?

  4. Chuck Moulton

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@4):

    He wants to End the Fed,

    Sounds good.

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@4):

    legalize gold and silver as money,

    Sounds good.

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@4):

    legalize competing currency

    Sounds good.

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@4):

    and phase out fractional reserve banking.

    Crackpot nuts.

    It’s too bad Murray Rothbard — a libertarian economist with a lot of good ideas — happened to favor having the government intervene and prohibit people from receiving interest on their money in exchange for the ability to lend it out. An otherwise anarcho-capitalist wants to create/keep a government to prohibit the payment of interest, and generations of libertarians seize onto that un-libertarian, un-anarchist, nutso idea.

  5. CommonTater

    Chuck

    Is that what Rothbard said? That’s not what I took away from What Has Government Done To Our Money?

    It’s been a while since I read it, but I understand it is available online so I’ll take a look.

  6. Chuck Moulton

    CommonTater wrote (@8):

    Is that what Rothbard said? That’s not what I took away from What Has Government Done To Our Money?

    I assigned What Has Government Done To Our Money? to the Money & Banking course I taught, so I am very familiar with it.

    Rothbard claims fractional reserves are fraud — that people are tricked into thinking their money is there at all times rather than lent out. He provides no evidence for this assertion. If banks cannot lend money out, then instead of the bank paying interest on deposits, the depositors will have to pay a storage fee to the bank to hold their money.

    Hernando de Soto continues Rothbard’s line of thought.

    Here is de Soto’s argument (simplified):

    1. A money warehouse contract is legitimate.
    2. A time deposit contract is legitimate.
    3. A demand deposit contract is neither a money warehouse contract nor a time deposit.
    4. Therefore, a demand deposit contract is not legitimate.

    See if you can spot the flaw in that logic.

    Some analogous logic:

    1. A dog has four legs.
    2. A cat has four legs.
    3. A goat is neither a dog nor a cat.
    4. Therefore, a goat does not have four legs.

    Here are some other examples of fractional reserves (if everyone withdraws at once there is not enough to go around):
    airline tickets
    parking spaces
    telephone system
    cafeteria food/meal plans

  7. Truth B. Told

    “He is far from a kook; he has the most watched documentary in the history of the internet. ”

    If you’re trying to defend someone from the charge of kookery, “he’s popular on the Internet” is not a helpful argument.

  8. CommonTater

    Thanks Chuck, I appreciate the refresher.

    So he says it is fraud. But he was also an anarchist, so it does not follow that he wants the state to prosecute it.

    Presumably that would be up to common law courts, competing enforcement agencies, or whatever system would exist for dealing with fraud in a polycentric legal order.

    Since you are very familiar with the text you can tell me if I’m wrong about that, although I still intend to re-read it for myself whether you do or not.

    I think it does make sense in a way that if you give people the impression that you are putting their money in a vault when you are in fact lending it out, it can be considered fraud. Of course, there is also the “buyer beware” counterargument, and if someone prefers to pay for a safety deposit box they have that option.

    It is certainly no secret that banks lend out money, so I can certainly see a case for saying that if someone puts their money in a regular bank account and thinks it goes into a deposit box that pays them rather than the other way around, and that bank loans are from some source of funds other than money deposited with the bank, that it is that person’s fault and not the bank’s.

    What do other people think?

  9. Mark Hilgenberg

    Can you and I loan out 10 times the money we have and charge interest?

    No, only banks can because OF government and the Fed.

    Remember, he is seeking the Libertarian Party nomination, not anarchist or anarco-capitalists.

    Call me crazy but having no debt and no income taxes seems appealing.

  10. George Phillies

    Having listened to Still, I believe his opinions include:

    He proposes that the Treasury should take over printing money.

    As Federal bonds come due, they are paid off with paper money that the Treasury prints.

    The Federal government is forbidden to borrow money — it only prints more currency if needed.

    Gold and silver coins become legal; he explains why gold coinage is basically useless, namely it is very easy to counterfit.

    He rejects — private conversation — the idea that commodity based currency is of any intrinsic merit.

    He wants to convert banks to currency storage vaults.

    I think he realizes that ‘fractional reserve’ does not mean that banks can lend out more money than they have but rather that they can only loan out most of what they have.

  11. Mark Hilgenberg

    George,

    I think that is about right.

    The only thing I think may be a little differnet is:

    “The Federal government is forbidden to borrow money — it only prints more currency if needed.”

    Part of the Monetary Reform Act is to only increase money supply by population growth. But if congress is able to spend more, that is where having legal gold and silver or competing currencies available would help.

    “Gold and silver coins become legal; he explains why gold coinage is basically useless, namely it is very easy to counterfit.”

    I think another issue on gold is it is easily manipulated by bankers, foreign nations and other forces.

    “He wants to convert banks to currency storage vaults.”

    Not sure what that means.

  12. Gene Berkman

    There are actually two issues, both referred to by the term “fractional reserve banking.”

    If a bank can issue legal tender paper money in excess of the value of gold or silver it holds to back up the paper – that is a “fractional reserve” and is opposed by libertarians and free market conservatives.

    If a bank takes money in deposits, and lends out part of that money, it only holds in reserve part of the cash to cover all the demand deposits – that is a standard banking practice, and not a problem as long as the “fractional reserve” is sufficient to cover withdrawals in the normal course of business.

  13. Trent Hill Post author

    Chuck,

    “Crackpot nuts.”

    Exactly. I wish Rothbard’s ideas about fractional reserve banking weren’t so widely accepted by the libertarian movement–they simply are not logical.

  14. Steven Wilson

    Not all people support Rothbard’s vision of the AC world.

    Still has an idea of checking the government through financial modes and not political. If the “borrow no money” was placed in the constitution, the supreme court would then be allowed to acknowledge if a certain budget was deemed “constitutional”.

    I know competition is a pure form of balance. This includes currency.

    I would like to offer that Still would be able to handle the podium and the QA with authority on financial matters. Not sure about any other issues.

  15. Darryl W. Perry

    @19 – or by selling bonds, something many States and municipalities are doing. Texas has a massive debt, even though the State Constitution requires a balanced budget.

  16. RedPhillips

    I have seen the cartoon Money as Debt video that North highlights. It is well done and is only 40+ minutes if you want to see what this is all about but don’t want to watch a 2 or 3 hr video. I think that part of the idea is that Congress would spend the new money into existence based on need with infrastructure projects and such, not just print it up willy-nilly.

    For those who object to opposition to fractional reserve banking, the Money as Debt video makes the point that a person could take a check from one bank that is only fractionally backed to another bank and deposit it where it would in part count as reserve for that bank, etc. etc. etc. So you have a non-existent fraction serving as reserve for another fraction out to several multiples. How is this not a problem?

  17. CommonTater

    Sounds like a recipe for runaway inflation.

    Government printing more money does not create anything of value, it just alters the monetary value of all existing property, goods, services and savings, disincentives saving and investment of any kind, funnels greater value to those who get the “new” government money first, and causes irrational spending by consumers trying to convert their money to goods and services before it loses value.

    This can become a vicious cycle as can be seen recently in Zimbabwe among other places, Weimar Germany etc.

    If government backs its printing presses with infrastructure or other such projects, it is merely shifting money around less efficiently than a freed market would. This is due to the calculation problem which makes government planners inherently less efficient than markets.

  18. Darryl W. Perry

    The federal government sells bonds now. Unless it’s some other U.S. Treasury Department selling U.S. Savings Bonds to people.
    Additionally, there is no constitutional authority for the Treasury to issue currency!

  19. Steven Wilson

    When Still indicates “borrow no money”, he is expressing financially the ability to credit the agent into nothingness.

    Because the income tax is a constant flow of stated income, it behaves like a reference for future money value on present money value lending.

    If I borrow money that you must pay back, ALL of the exchange and purchase mandates fall upon you. The “burden” is yours completely.

    The debt is a reference to exchange and purchase. When someone from the government states that “we” are in debt, you first must acknowledge what “we” bought with that exchange.

    If you don’t borrow, you don’t need to prove purchase, exchange, or retained earnings. Still is trying to remove the burden of income tax by removing the necessity of the proof therein for said borrowing.

    If you warehouse your exchange mechanism, the balance you find will be in variance of degree but it will be in balance. The agents will play the game with the amount of exchange mechanism to play the game. No more no less.

    With no Line of credit, there will be no boom or bust, in theory.

  20. Chuck Moulton

    CommonTater wrote (@11):

    I think it does make sense in a way that if you give people the impression that you are putting their money in a vault when you are in fact lending it out, it can be considered fraud.

    It would be impossible for banks to pay out interest if they put the money in a vault. Since banks pay out interest, people must know that money is being lent out. This is common knowledge anyway.

    CommonTater wrote (@11):

    So he says it is fraud. But he was also an anarchist, so it does not follow that he wants the state to prosecute it.

    Rothbard wants banks to be prevented from using fractional reserves. How he wants to do this with no government is anyone’s guess… I’m not aware of any writing in which he specifies this.

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@12):

    Can you and I loan out 10 times the money we have and charge interest?

    Banks can loan 10 times their reserves, but not 10 times their assets. You seem to fundamentally misunderstand banking.

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@12):

    No, only banks can because OF government and the Fed.

    That statement displays a deep historical ignorance. Fractional reserve existed long before central banks (see Scottish free banking for example). And it invariably exists in the places and times with no government intervention.

    People would rather receive interest on their money than pay a storage fee. That’s human nature and historical fact.

  21. Chuck Moulton

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@14):

    “He wants to convert banks to currency storage vaults.”

    Not sure what that means.

    It is clear to me.

    Banking that does not use fractional reserves is money warehousing. The bank keeps your money is a vault and you pay a storage fee to the bank each month or year.

  22. Chuck Moulton

    RedPhillips wrote (@23):

    For those who object to opposition to fractional reserve banking, the Money as Debt video makes the point that a person could take a check from one bank that is only fractionally backed to another bank and deposit it where it would in part count as reserve for that bank, etc. etc. etc. So you have a non-existent fraction serving as reserve for another fraction out to several multiples. How is this not a problem?

    The question is how is this a problem? And the answer is that it isn’t.

    For those that don’t understand fractional reserve banking, Steve Horwitz clears some things up in this post on the free banking blog:

    http://www.freebanking.org/2011/06/27/the-problem-is-central-banking-not-fractional-reserve-banking/

  23. Chuck Moulton

    Gene Berkman wrote (@15):

    There are actually two issues, both referred to by the term “fractional reserve banking.”

    If a bank can issue legal tender paper money in excess of the value of gold or silver it holds to back up the paper – that is a “fractional reserve” and is opposed by libertarians and free market conservatives.

    The problem there is the legal tender, not the fractional reserves. If a bank issues paper money redeemable in gold with fractional reserves and there is no law requiring people to accept it, then there is no problem at all. To the extent you claim redeemable fractional reserve money is opposed by libertarians and free market conservatives, you’re overgeneralizing and wrong. Many free market types and libertarians support free banking.

    Gene Berkman wrote (@15):

    If a bank takes money in deposits, and lends out part of that money, it only holds in reserve part of the cash to cover all the demand deposits – that is a standard banking practice, and not a problem as long as the “fractional reserve” is sufficient to cover withdrawals in the normal course of business.

    Exactly right.

  24. CommonTater

    It would be impossible for banks to pay out interest if they put the money in a vault.

    True. I acknowledged that later in the comment.

    Since banks pay out interest, people must know that money is being lent out. This is common knowledge anyway.

    Lots of stupid folks out there with no sense who believe they can have something for nothing.

    Not that this is the fault or responsibility of those who take advantage of their stupidity if no actual coercion or fraud is used.

  25. CommonTater

    Rothbard wants banks to be prevented from using fractional reserves. How he wants to do this with no government is anyone’s guess…

    If he believes it is fraud, presumably he wants in enforced in the same way as other instances of fraud. He did write generally about law enforcement under anarchism, I believe, even if not specifically about this instance.

  26. CommonTater

    Banking that does not use fractional reserves is money warehousing. The bank keeps your money is a vault and you pay a storage fee to the bank each month or year.

    Already exists. Safety deposit boxes anyone?

  27. ATBAFT

    Now if we could just get every voter to sit through a five hour lecture on fractional reserve banking, the Fed, etc. etc., we might be able to get .5% of the vote for Mr. Still.

  28. Robert Capozzi

    33 CT: If [MNR] believes it is fraud, presumably he wants in enforced in the same way as other instances of fraud. He did write generally about law enforcement under anarchism, I believe, even if not specifically about this instance.

    me: Yes, making HHH indispensable. Imagine competing insurance companies engaged in paramilitary battle fighting to get jurisdiction to storm the bank that dares to engage in fractional reserve banking. : )

  29. Humongous Fungus

    LOL.

    About as silly as believing we can just print money and solve all our problems that way,

    Nigel Tufnel: The numbers all go to eleven. Look, right across the board, eleven, eleven, eleven and…
    Marty DiBergi: Oh, I see. And most amps go up to ten?
    Nigel Tufnel: Exactly.
    Marty DiBergi: Does that mean it’s louder? Is it any louder?
    Nigel Tufnel: Well, it’s one louder, isn’t it? It’s not ten. You see, most blokes, you know, will be playing at ten. You’re on ten here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up, you’re on ten on your guitar. Where can you go from there? Where?
    Marty DiBergi: I don’t know.
    Nigel Tufnel: Nowhere. Exactly. What we do is, if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do?
    Marty DiBergi: Put it up to eleven.
    Nigel Tufnel: Eleven. Exactly. One louder.
    Marty DiBergi: Why don’t you just make ten louder and make ten be the top number and make that a little louder?
    Nigel Tufnel: [pause] These go to eleven.

  30. RedPhillips

    “sufficient to cover withdrawals in the normal course of business.”

    But what about when the course of business is not normal? Like during a bank run? Franctional reserve banking to the degree that it is done today is facilitated by government deposit insurance and emergency Fed loans.

    If we had free banking, I don’t doubt that some amount of fractional reserve banking might remain in a competive environment with fully informed consumers, but I highly doubt that it would exist to the extent that it does today without government facilitation and protection.

    When the Fed practices quantatative easing or whatever, they don’t even bother to print up the money. The new “money” is actually in the form of photons on a computer screen somewhere. The bank can then loan out against those photons or hand out real cash to people making withdrawals based on those photons. This is a house of cards. This is not complex economics. It is common sense.

    I’m not sure I totally buy the contention of these (let’s call them Greenbackers per North) Greenbackers that there is essentially a one to one correspondence between new money and debt, but we clearly have a system that mixes money as debt and fiat money.

    Chuck, I am not an economist and have never claimed to be, but I do know something about the history of money as a political issue. Your suggestion that everyone who disagrees with you just doesn’t understand and needs to read a little more is a wee bit condescending.

  31. JT

    CommonTater: “I think it does make sense in a way that if you give people the impression that you are putting their money in a vault when you are in fact lending it out, it can be considered fraud.”

    If you tell people something in order to get something from them and what you’ve said isn’t true, then that’s fraud (e.g., Bernie Madoff). But that’s not the case here. If someone doesn’t understand the concept of a bank, then that’s his/her problem. A banker doesn’t tell people that a bank is something other than what a bank is.

    Chuck: “That statement displays a deep historical ignorance. Fractional reserve existed long before central banks (see Scottish free banking for example). And it invariably exists in the places and times with no government intervention.”

    Absolutely. Fractional reserve is a market phenomenon. Of course, government policies do make it more likely that banks will take risks in lending money that they wouldn’t otherwise take in a free market.

  32. Mark Hilgenberg

    “You seem to fundamentally misunderstand banking.”

    “That statement displays a deep historical ignorance. ”

    Chuck,

    If this is how you talked to your potential voters I can see why you lost and our membership has tanked for since 2005. Great people skills!

    My goal was not to give a long rambling and annoying, dissertation of banking history but to communicate like a normal person. I understand banking just fine, thanks.

    @25 With “We the people” in charge of our money as opposed to banks, foreign nations and commodity prices, our odds are better to keep inflation low.

  33. Mark Hilgenberg

    @38 “Chuck, I am not an economist and have never claimed to be, but I do know something about the history of money as a political issue. Your suggestion that everyone who disagrees with you just doesn’t understand and needs to read a little more is a wee bit condescending.”

    Red,

    You know Libertarians, we have to use their words and phrases exactly as they do or will be be quickly put down.

    The sad part is this is the type of leadership we pick and then wonder why we are at .40%

    @35 Actually Bill Still does a great job communicating his ideas to the people. He is focusing on one major issue as opposed to trying to propose our entire platform during every speech.

  34. CommonTater

    “If you tell people something in order to get something from them and what you’ve said isn’t true, then that’s fraud (e.g., Bernie Madoff). But that’s not the case here. If someone doesn’t understand the concept of a bank, then that’s his/her problem. A banker doesn’t tell people that a bank is something other than what a bank is.”

    Yep, covered that part right after the section you responded to.

    “With “We the people” in charge of our money as opposed to banks, foreign nations and commodity prices, our odds are better to keep inflation low.”

    Who was in charge of the printing presses in Zimbabwe? Weimar Germany?

    I think you are presenting a false choice.

    Abolish the fed, yes; but replace it with nothing, not with nationalization.

  35. Robert Capozzi

    21 mh: Bill Still … is focusing on one major issue as opposed to trying to propose our entire platform during every speech.

    me: Seems unwise for a prez candidate. A few major issues, yes, but one issue is unlikely to be of much value…Johnny One Note is likely not the best way to advance liberty, which involves the entire state/citizen interface.

  36. Mark Hilgenberg

    @42 “Who was in charge of the printing presses in Zimbabwe? Weimar Germany?”

    Not a constitutional republic with a strict control over the quantity of money.

  37. George Phillies

    @42 Printing presses in Weimar Germany.

    That was a deliberate government policy, or so I was taught of the German government, to destroy the value of the Mark to retaliate for French occupation of the Rheinland after WW1.

  38. Mark Hilgenberg

    @45

    George,

    Long time no see BTW!

    Exactly, that was a system that was out of the control of the people. If “We the people” of the greatest constitutional republic in history can’t take back the money power, we are all in trouble.

  39. RedPhillips

    Chuck, I read the freebanking.org link, and I don’t really disagree with it. The reason I said I don’t necessarily buy the one to one correspondence of debt to new money is that I figured in a general sense that there must be upstream effects from the original bank on the entire banking system that somewhat balance the downstream effects of money multiplication, but I knew it would give me a headache to actually work it out in detail.

    But I don’t think it is as easy as saying that upstream bank #1 must now call in some loans to rebuild its reserves for the money it just loaned out. How does that work? You can’t just demand instant payment in full from some sap in credit card debt or some mortgage holder. (You might can leagally but not practically.) I assume the way it works is that inflow generally matches outflow more or less and when there is a need to build up the reserves the bank gets a short term loan from the Fed. Isn’t this what the prime rate is all about? It is the rate the Fed charges banks.

    So the Fed essentially lubricates the whole process and deposit insurance keeps the customers from panicing. In fact, it is this lubrication of the system that many praise as a virtue of the Fed. So while some fractional reserve banking might arise in a truly free banking system, I doubt it would be anywhere near the system we have today.

    My understanding of anti-fractional reserve Austrians is not that they would ban the practice outright, but that they don’t think it would survive in a competative free banking system. So it seems to me that the disagreement is over the extent to which fractional reserve banking would survive in a truly free market. So indictments of fractional reserve banking are not just an indictment of the practice per se, but the practice and the whole system that allows it to flourish.

  40. Chuck Moulton

    Red Phillips wrote (@38):

    But what about when the course of business is not normal? Like during a bank run?

    Under free banking when there were bank runs other banks or clearinghouse associations would lend to solvent institutions at a penalty interest rate. Even when banks were insolvent, other banks would accept their banknotes to take their customers.

    Without restrictions against branch banking and without bond collateral requirements banks were fairly stable, large, diversified and run proof though. For example, Canada did not suffer bank runs during the Great Depression when the U.S. (which had branch banking restrictions and a bond collateral requirement) suffered failures in half its banks.

    Red Phillips wrote (@38):

    If we had free banking, I don’t doubt that some amount of fractional reserve banking might remain in a competive environment with fully informed consumers, but I highly doubt that it would exist to the extent that it does today without government facilitation and protection.

    Deposit insurance is certainly a government distortion of the market. There is no general business failure insurance — this is because of the fundamental difference between risk (which is measurable, predictable with a statistical distribution) and uncertainty (which is random).

    Deposit insurance affects banking decisions at the margin, but I doubt there would be a sharp drop off in banking without it. Historically banks published their balance sheets in local newspapers to advertise they were solvent.

  41. JT

    Mark: “If this is how you talked to your potential voters I can see why you lost and our membership has tanked for since 2005. Great people skills!

    “My goal was not to give a long rambling and annoying, dissertation of banking history but to communicate like a normal person. I understand banking just fine, thanks.”

    I don’t understand your great indignation here. You made a statement. Chuck pointed out that what you said wasn’t factual. Maybe his phrase “deep historical ignorance” about banking was a bit harsh, but you seemed pretty firm in your initial assertion.

    Your comment about a candidate growing a beard was funny.

  42. Steven Wilson

    I think Still is interesting but he has a problem with diversity of discussion. Unless he has a game strategist or a speech writer, he might have an issue talking about things outside of finance and banking.

    People around Jefferson city that I know have asked questions about the Alabama immigration ruling, nuclear power, and the duration of the wars for Akins and Steelman.

    He has time to prepare, but he will need to have an arsenal if he is interview well.

    He also has a good reputation in banking, but his documentary status also carries a hint of conspiracy nuttish.

    Americans want real solutions, not more whodunit. I hope his team is ready.

    The banker did it might carry the day, but he will need long term solutions to match Cain and Paul.

  43. Chuck Moulton

    JT wrote (@49):

    I don’t understand your great indignation here. You made a statement. Chuck pointed out that what you said wasn’t factual.

    Twitter makes it much easier to be clear.

    No, only banks can because OF government and the Fed. #NotIntendedToBeAFactualStatement

    No, only banks can because OF government and the Fed. #IDontHaveFactsToBackThisUp

  44. Mark Hilgenberg

    @49 Don’t forget the golden oldie of the Libertarian elites. “You seem to fundamentally misunderstand banking.”

    No, I just prefer not to give a history lesson. As it is NOW the government allows banks to create money.

    The average person doesn’t want a history lesson, just a solution.

    @50

    I agree, he does have a great economic team but he will need more.

    @52 Libertarianism would be so great without all the Libertarians!

  45. langa

    The only thing that makes fractional reserve banking “illegitimate” is the existence of government-funded deposit insurance (like the FDIC), which acts as a subsidy, by socializing the cost of deposit insurance, and thus insulating fractional reserve banks from the threat of bank runs.

    In a true free market, fractional reserve banks could still exist, but they would have to pay for their own deposit insurance, and thus, they could not offer such attractive terms to customers as they do in the status quo. Given that reality, people could then choose whether to do business with them or not.

  46. ralph swanson

    Another money crank hi-jacking the tottering LP.

    Rothbard said fractional reserve was immoral in a coerced government context. He readily admitted that it was fine in a voluntary one, though probably imprudent. Same for deposit insurance.

    The LP needs candidates who’ll focus onending ballot access laws and other structural things like Direct Democracy and MMP.

  47. CommonTater

    Seems unwise for a prez candidate. A few major issues, yes, but one issue is unlikely to be of much value…Johnny One Note is likely not the best way to advance liberty, which involves the entire state/citizen interface.

    I agree!

  48. CommonTater

    “Who was in charge of the printing presses in Zimbabwe? Weimar Germany?”

    Not a constitutional republic with a strict control over the quantity of money.

    Cracka please!

    Have you been observing what this “constitutional republic” politicians have been doing with the powers they already have (constitutional and otherwise)?

    They are in no ways immune to all the bad incentives that motivate governments elsewhere and those “strict controls” will give way in no time under the weight of various temptations and pressures and economic ignorance, joined by increasing momentum and short sightedness.

  49. CommonTater

    If “We the people” of the greatest constitutional republic in history can’t take back the money power, we are all in trouble.

    Then yes, we are all in trouble.

    We don’t need “the people” (actually the regime) taking control of the money, that is just replacing corporatist statism with socialist statism.

    We need freedom of choice in currency and free banking.

    Freedom is the answer. Nationalization versus “public-private partnership” fascist corporatism is a false choice of two evils.

  50. Pingback: Bill Still: Libertarian for President | Conservative Heritage Times

  51. Starchild

    If fractional reserve banking is transparent, I don’t believe it’s a problem, but if it’s not, I think Rothbard’s right that it’s fraudulent, even if “most people know” banks don’t actually keep on hand all the money that people deposit with them. “Most people know” that politicians tend to not keep their promises, but that doesn’t excuse the fraud committed by those who break them.

    In a free market, if banks told depositors up front what percentage of their deposits would be kept on hand and what percentage loaned out, then people would have a choice whether to earn higher interest with a greater risk of losing their money at a bank practicing fractional reserve banking, or earn less interest but have more financial security by banking with an institution that guaranteed all deposits would be kept in cash.

    Banks not practicing fractional reserve banking, and thus not loaning out money, could make money in other ways, such as by charging fees rather than paying interest to those entrusting them with their funds, or paying low interest and relying on the sale of auxiliary products and services to generate revenue (e.g. checks, safety deposit boxes, online banking, financial planning, etc.)

    Definitely where fractional reserve banking *really* becomes a problem is when deposits are guaranteed by government.

  52. Mark Hilgenberg

    Starchild,

    On top of that they don’t need deposits, they can take a loan from the Fed and loan out ten times what they have in reserve. Plus the Fed pays them interest on their reserves.

    No individual can do this, we can’t create money, only banks can.

  53. Chuck Moulton

    Mark Hilgenberg wrote (@67):

    On top of that they don’t need deposits, they can take a loan from the Fed and loan out ten times what they have in reserve. Plus the Fed pays them interest on their reserves.

    No individual can do this, we can’t create money, only banks can.

    You’re still confusing central banking problems with fractional reserve banking problems.

  54. Hugh Mann

    So…who’s working on this guy’s campaign? is there a campaign website?

    Oh, wait, I see QM already asked.

    Carry on.

  55. Moderate Pragmatic Libertaryan

    Ill Bill is a scary Jigga from the Glenwood Projects in Brooklyn. No thanks! We need a Country Club Republican with impeccable breeding and moderate pragmatic libertarian tendencies.

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  57. JamesM

    The idea that the government will be given a printing press and run wild is absurd. Why? Because they can already mint coins and do it. They have that power now. So if they wanted to do it, they would. The problem is they do the exact same thing only making it debt. This allows banks to buy “debt”. Consider the idea that treasury created interest free money being a threat debunked.
    Lets let that alone anyway. The real scam he is addressing, that no gold bug seems to understand, is that its the fractional reserve lending is the far bigger problem. So ah, do they add any value placing creating capital? LMAO

  58. Tom Feeny

    Coins are bulky and cost actual money to produce. Using them is relevantly inconvenient. Government attempts to debase the currency further by introducing dollar coins have failed several times. Paper money is easier to manipulate, and plastic cards and implantable microchips even more so.

    There are many examples of government printing presses gone wild all over the world. Yes it can happen here.

    Fractional reserve banking is only a problem when the banks have deposits insured (not the depositors, common mistake) by the money lending public-private fascist cartel.

    The answer is end the fed, end government money and allow private currencies to compete.

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  61. Jerry

    I have watched Bill Stills videos, studied economic monetary policy in college. (3.67 GPA in business/Economics, for what it’s worth) I have watched, listened and read from most of the worlds top economic/monetary policy minds. Mises, Keynesian, Rothbard, North, Casey, Schiff, even Paul and Still etc., etc. When I finally came to the conclusion on what is best for all the people of the world, I understood that fractional reserve banking and lending was a legalized, counterfeiting, ponzi scheme, that only benefited the central banker crooks. Yea, it took me over twenty years of study to understand that a private bank should not have the right to print money out of thin air, then loan out the non-existent money, (9 out of every 10 dollars the Federal Reserve Bank lends does not actually exist!) at interest to the people. They should not have the right to make money off something they do not have is the point. When Clinton repealed the Glass – Steagal act the bankers created another boom/bust cycle through predatory lending and counterfeit computer generated “money” called derivatives. I bet you wish you had the legal right to print, or computer generate and loan money as you saw fit. It would change your life. Well money only grows on tree’s for the greedy private central banks that print it. They are money junkies. It is one of the biggest ongoing crime’s against humanity in history. I will end by including the most to the point quote I can think of from the mouth of the beast himself. The brainchild of this crime, Baron Nathan Mayer Rothschild. “I care not what puppet is placed on the throne of England to rule the Empire… The man that controls Britain’s money supply controls the British empire. And I control the money supply.” As we all know the Rothschild family and friends still control it pretty much globally. Thomas Jefferson warned the nation against a private company/central bank controlling the money supply. He said it would leave the people homeless and penniless on the continent their forefathers conquered. Ben Franklin said that the argument of who was to control the Colonies money was the main cause of the Revolutionary war. The British wanted to tax us. The British hated our currency called Colonial Scrip. By the way if you watch Bill Stills documentaries you will gain a vast knowledge of history. Another excellent documentary called”The Creature From Jekyll Island”, is a summation of why our country is in such bad shape. Monetary policy is always what makes or breaks great countries and civilizations. Greed is always the killer. Modern day central banks are greedy killers. They fund both sides of wars that they start for the purpose of lining their pockets with gold. This is all well documented. If you have not come to these conclusions yet, ask a Rothschild, Rockefeller, Goldman – Sachs, Lehman, Warburg, Lazard, Kuhn – Loebs, or Israel Moses Seifs. Why argue amongst ourselves when they will tell you it is all true. After all they think they are invincible because they are ruthless.

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