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Stop the Fed
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal, July 28, 2009
Posted: August 2nd, 2009

The Obama administration's plan to increase the powers of the Federal Reserve, says one critic, is like giving a teenager "a bigger, faster car right after he crashed the family station wagon." Broadening the Fed's responsibilities won't help. Instead, we should think of how best to dismantle an overextended Fed. The Fed has been incapacitated by its transformation into an omnibus enterprise with responsibilities ranging from boots-on-the-ground regulation to high-level monetary policy. The Federal Reserve Act of 1913, which created the Federal Reserve System, did so to forestall financial panics rather than pursue macroeconomic policies. The gold standard defined monetary policy. The Fed was merely meant to "provide an elastic currency" by serving as lender of last resort in times of crisis. The Act also assigned the Fed routine responsibilities for maintaining and improving the financial system – examining banks, issuing currency notes, and helping clear checks. The adoption of Keynesian and monetarist ideas by central bankers and elected officials subsequently cast the Fed in a proactive macroeconomic role. In 1977, an amendment to the 1913 Act explicitly charged the Fed with promoting "maximum" employment and "stable" prices. The Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 gave the Fed responsibility over holding companies designed to circumvent restrictions placed on individual banks. Congress further tasked the Fed with enforcing consumer-protection and fair-lending rules. While the record of the Fed's monetary policy has been mixed, its supervision of financial institutions has been a predictable and comprehensive failure. The Fed's excessively broad mandate also has thwarted accountability.

Note: The bill to audit the Fed (HR 1207) in the US Congress now has 276 co-signers -- more than 50% of all members. Yet the media is hardly reporting on this. Contact your Congressional representatives now at this link.

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