“The Central Bank is an institution of the most deadly hostility existing against the Principles and form of our Constitution. I am an enemy to all banks discounting bills or notes for anything but coin. If the American people allow private banks to control the issuance of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation the banks and corporations that grow up around them will deprive the people of all their property, until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered.” – Thomas Jefferson
Our neighbors to the south in Georgia have introduced the Constitutional Tender Act (HB430), a piece of legislation that has profound implications for state sovereignty. This bill seeks to return the state of Georgia to a basic constitutional principle written in Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution, “No State shall … make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts.”
The bill will require all taxes and debts be paid to the Georgia state government in gold or silver coin, or bank accounts backed by gold and silver. This will build a reserve of real money, gold and silver bullion, for the citizens of Georgia which would provide protection against the devaluation of the U.S. Dollar.
The paper Federal Reserve Notes that we use today have no intrinsic value of their own, they are fiat currency – only legal tender because the government declares them to be so. Before 1933, Federal Reserve Notes could be exchanged for gold bullion. President Franklin D. Roosevelt abolished this practice making Federal Reserve Notes only worth the value of the paper on which they are printed. Rapid inflation has ensued since the gold standard was abandoned, so that it now takes $16.64 in today’s currency to duplicate the buying power of $1 in 1933 (US Bureau of Labor and Statistics). The Georgia General Assembly finds this to be the case as well, stating in their legislation:
“The General Assembly finds that, as mandated by Article I, Section 10 of the United States Constitution, the state shall not make anything but gold and silver coins as tender in payment of debts. Federal Reserve Accounting Unit Dollars, having no redeeming value in gold or silver coin, shall not be made a tender in payment of debts by the state.”
Legislation similar to Georgia’s has been proposed in Colorado, Indiana, and Missouri. It is no wonder, as legislation like this would help strip the Fed of its power to control monetary policy and would strengthen each state’s control over its own financial destiny. Having this kind of gold and silver reserve would give each state greater power to resist unconstitutional Federal mandates and further secure their sovereignty, without being dependent on the paper fiat currency printed and constantly manipulated by the Fed. Even Alan Greenspan has noted that the gold standard stands in the way of the statists’ desire for control of money and private property:
“The abandonment of the gold standard made it possible for the welfare statists to use the banking system as a means to an unlimited expansion of credit… In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value… Deficit spending is simply a scheme for the ‘hidden’ confiscation of wealth. Gold stands in the way of this insidious process. It stands as a protector of property rights. If one grasps this, one has no difficulty in understanding the statists’ antagonism toward the gold standard.”
Tennessee must lead the way in protecting its citizens against the machinations of the Fed’s money schemes. We have a Federal government that is printing its fiat money at will to meet its obligations, and eventually that house of cards will fall flat, taking with it the assets of those who have saved their money and decimating those on fixed incomes. We cannot afford to wait until the U.S. Dollar is decimated before we act to protect the financial future of Tennesseans.
Visit the Tenth Amendment Center’s Constitutional Tender page at http://www.tenthamendmentcenter.com/nullification/constitutional-tender/.
Lesley Swann is a Co-Host for Tenther Radio and the state chapter coordinator for the Tennessee Tenth Amendment Center. She is a native of Anderson County, Tennessee.
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