by James P. Pinkerton
“You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out, and by the eternal God, I will rout you out.”
Today I turn over my space to Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, who said these fiery words to a delegation of bankers in 1832:
“Gentlemen, I have had men watching you for a long time, and I am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the
bank and annul its charter, I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true, gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out, and by the eternal God, I will rout you out.”
The issue back then was the Bank of the United States, a federally chartered institution—sort of a predecessor to the Federal Reserve—that Jackson, ever the populist, strongly opposed. Today, most people agree that a national bank is necessary, but as today’s vote demonstrates, there is no national consensus on transferring wealth from the middle to the top. Good! Let’s hope that principle holds true for a while longer.
Today, the same as back then, big bankers attempt to blackmail America: If you don’t do things our way, exactly as we tell you, then the roof will cave in.
For more on this commentary, go to The Fox Forum