July 09, 2009

“Audit the Fed” blocked

I guess we should have seen this coming… The Senate version of Ron Paul’s “Audit the Fed” bill (HR1207) has been effectively blocked by Ben Nelson (and, no doubt, countless other Masters of the Universe working behind the scenes.)

Write Addison Wiggin and Ian Mathias of The Daily Reckoning

Late yesterday, the Senate majority put the kibosh on a last-hour provision in the 2010 spending bill that would audit the Fed. Not because it?s a bad idea? but because of the arcane Rule 16, which prohibits policy legislation from being added to spending bills. (The kind of ?rule? that?s only evoked when the majority gets uncomfortable.)
?The Federal Reserve will create and disburse trillions of dollars in response to our current financial crisis,” said Sen. Jim DeMint, who spearheaded the failed audit addition. “Americans across the nation, regardless of their opinion on the bailout, want to know where the money has gone.? Under his proposed plan, the Government Accountability Office would take a look into the Fed?s discount window lending, various funding ?facilities,? bank bailouts and agreements with foreign players. 
Shame on Mr. DeMint for such an outrageous request. Down-to-the-wire appropriations should be reserved for truly exigent causes? like protecting the makers of wooden arrows designed for use by children. Why bother wasting the time of the GAO with a simple audit of the most unaccountable monetary body in the world?

Of course, in the long run, a brazen attempt to kill a bill with 256 co-sponsors in the House might be positive in that it’d reveal to all the degree to which the world’s most powerful private bank doesn’t want any of its dealings ever to see the light of day. And a lot more people are starting to get it. The fact that HuffPost, which one would expect to be praising Bernanke as the next “Maestro,” is speculating that the Fed’s days might be numbered, and that at a wine tasting out here in Whitefish, MT, where I’m vacationing, some out-of-towners told me, without any inducement on my part, that they’re worried about this unaccountable, immensely powerful institution, leads me to believe that “End the Fed” might not be the “crankish,” “fringe,” “black helicopters” political cause it once was.


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