Friday - Apr 26, 2019

Martial Law, World War I and the Great Depression

­ Marvin J. RamirezMarvin Ramirez

FROM THE EDITOR: I keep running through interesting, historical articles while surfing the internet. This one, written by Gary Hunt in May 24, 1994, is an example of how much information is out there that most of us – purposely – were never thought to us in school. El Reportero takes pride in sharing this very informative article with our readers, and hope your learn from it and enjoy it very much. Due to its length, it will be published in several partes.

by Gary Hunt

Parte 2


History makes quite clear the existence of the Great Depression. Exactly when it began is subject to debate. However, the fact that Franklin D. Roosevelt became President in March 4, 1933 is not.

On Sunday, March 5, 1933, Franklin Roosevelt called for Congress to “convene in extra session” on March 9, 1933 [Proclamation 2038]. On the very next day, he declared, by proclamation, a “bank holiday” which ran from Monday, March 6 through Thursday, March 9, inclusive. In the proclamation he makes some rather interesting claims.

He states that “there have been heavy and unwarranted withdrawals of gold and currency . . . for the purpose of hoarding.” and this “has resulted in severe a drains on the Nation’s stocks of gold : and”

“WHEREAS these conditions have created a national emergency; and”

He then goes on to refer to “Section 5(b) of the Act of October 6, 1917, (40 Stat. L, 411) as amended “That the President may investigate, regulate, or prohibit, under such rules and regulations as he may prescribe, by means of license or otherwise, any transactions in foreign exchange and the export, hoarding, melting, or earmarkings of gold or silver coin or bullion or currency * * *’”

Further, “NOW, THEREFORE, I, Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States of America in view (f the national emergency and by virtue of the authority vested in me by said Act . . . “ (emphasis mine), and declares the “holiday.”

The “national emergency” that he spoke of was the extension of lending authority granted to the Federal Reserve Bank (FRB) just twenty years before. The FRB was unable to provide, in gold, the deposits on hand. The system of fractional banking had allowed them to extend credit well beyond the available “value” held in trust by the banks. This is the definition of bankrupt, “The state or condition of one who is unable to pay his debts as they are, or become, due.” (Black’s Law Dictionary, Fifth Edition)

Then curiously, on March 9, Roosevelt saw fit to continue the “bank holiday” [Proclamation No. 2040] until further “proclamation” by the President. Perhaps never to be rescinded by said proclamation.

Then, on March 9, 1933, Congress passed “AN ACT To provide relief in the existing national emergency in banking, and for other purposes.” [73rd Congress, Public Law No. 1, March 9, 1933. (Title I, § 1, 48 Stat. I] (emphasis mine) “That the Congress declares that a serious emergency exists and that it is imperatively necessary speedily to put into effect remedies of uniform national application. “ Congress, not to be outdone by the President, passed a joint resolutions which confirmed the existence of the emergency (March 9 Proclamation) and argued that the resolution was necessary, otherwise the payment in gold, of real debts, would “obstruct the power of Congress to regulate the value of the money of the United States.” That “every provision contained or made with respect to any obligation which purports to give the obligee a right to require payment in gold [the Constitution] or a particular kind of coin or currency [gold certificates], or an amount in money of the United States measured thereby; is declared to be against public policy; . . . Every obligation, heretofore or hereafter incurred, whether any such provision is contained therein or made with respect thereto, shall be discharged upon payment, dollar for dollar: in any coin or currency [Federal Reserve Notes] which at the time of payment is legal tender. . .” (emphasis mine)

Within the Act they rewrote Section 5(b) of the “Trading with the enemy Act” of 1917. The first sentence is provided, in it’s entirety, to give you an idea of the change of mood of the government:

1933, Section 5(b)

During time of war or any other period of national emergency declared by the President, That the President may , through any agency that he may designate, or otherwise, investigate, regulate, or prohibit, under such rules and regulations as he may prescribe, by means of licenses or otherwise, any transactions in foreign exchange, export or earmarkings of gold or silver coin or bullion or currency, transfers of credit between or payments by banking institutions as defined by the President, and export, hoarding, melting, or earmarking of gold or silver coin or bullion or currency, in any form (other than credits relating solely to transactions to be executed wholly within the United States); and transfers of evidence of indebtedness or of ownership of property between the United States and any foreign country, whether enemy, ally of enemy or otherwise, or between residents of one or more foreign countries, by any person within the United States or any place subject to the jurisdiction thereof; and he the President may require any such person engaged in any such transaction referred to in this subdivision to furnish, under oath, complete information relative thereto, including the production of any books of account, contracts, letters or other papers, in connection therewith in the custody or control of .such person, either before or after such transaction is completed…”­