Using Gold As Money Is Terrorism: U.S. Attorney Tompkins
Comments made by the U.S. Attorney in the successful counterfeiting case against Bernard Von Nothaus raise the question of who the real terrorists are: Von Nothaus or Tompkins, the Fed, and the Banking Lobby? by Walt Thiessen
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Ever since I first wrote about the arrest of Norfed founder Bernard Von Nothaus in November 2007, I've publicly taken the position that the use of gold and silver as money, other than that issued by the U.S. government, is (wrongfully) illegal. I've taken heat for that claim, but I refuse to back off.
As I wrote in June 2010, "I've long been concerned about the fact that the liberty movement, for the most part, doesn't even know what USC 18-486 says or that it even exists. While many people in the movement now favor auditing the Federal Reserve's monetary policies and eliminating legal tender laws, it is quite apparent to me that most people don't realize that it is currently illegal in this country to use gold or silver coins as money."
Until the liberty movement comes to terms with this fact, it will continue to be misled by people who argue that gold and silver are legal to use as money, a claim which is not true. Morally, it should be true, but legally it is not.
The federal government's policy to prevent people from using gold and silver as money clearly violates the founders' intentions and the spirit of what's written in the Constitution. I've often wondered why the founders, who clearly wanted to prevent the use of anything but gold and silver as money, made the mistake of only prohibiting the states from using paper money, but did not similarly, explicitly prohibit the federal government from doing the same thing. How, I've often wondered, could they have been so foolish as to not extend the same prohibition to the federal government? Sadly, that's the mistake they made.
The replacement of gold and silver with debt-based paper money is nothing short of legalized theft by the banking community on behalf and at the behest of the federal government. That's what makes the comments of U.S. Attorney Anne Tompkins so appalling. Tompkins is the prosecutor who won a conviction against Von Nothaus for counterfeiting. Counterfeiting! Tompkins convinced a jury that replacing something of lesser value with something of greater value is counterfeiting. It's hard to imagine how someone who issues a coin that is created 100% from a material that actually retains its value over time could be convicted of "counterfeiting" a currency whose primary purpose is to debase itself and systematically steal from all people who are forced to use it. Yet, that's what has happened.
Tompkins issued a statement after the trial that defies reason and sanity and that demonstrates beyond doubt that the U.S. government's greatest enemy, in the government's view, are the same people the government claims to protect and serve. Tompkins said, "Attempts to undermine the legitimate currency of this country are simply a unique form of domestic terrorism. While these forms of anti-government activities do not involve violence, they are every bit as insidious and represent a clear and present danger to the economic stability of this country," In other words, from her viewpoint, the real question of the trial wasn't whether the Norfed coins were intended to be counterfeits of the U.S. dollar. The real question, in her view, was whether those who advocate the use of gold and silver as money should be considered patriots or terrorists. In her view, honest people who want honest money that has honest value are terrorists.
The only way that the Norfed coins could possibly undermine the U.S. currency is if Norfed coins are worth more, not less, than official U.S. currency. Tompkins hoped that her audience doesn't realize that fact. Norfed's gold and silver coins cannot be confused for official U.S. dollars. Nor could Norfed produce enough such coins of pure silver or gold to make more than a tiny dent in the overwhelming size of the official money supply. The sheer, inherent value of those coins, based on their gold and silver content, prohibits that possibility at the values listed on the coins. Nor would any human being on earth be stupid enough to give up a so-called "$500" gold Norfed coin at an equivalent value of $500 in U.S. currency or a $5 silver coin at an equivalent value of $5 in paper U.S. dollars. No, that kind of "undermining" is not what Tompkins meant at all.
Instead, she was talking about the fact that if the Norfed dollar were permitted by law to be used as a parallel currency in competition with the U.S. dollar, the marketplace would soon reduce the paper dollar to its true value: zero. That's why she views Norfed as counterfeiting and Von Nothaus as a terrorist. In her view, the Norfed dollar wouldn't undermine the U.S. dollar by diluting it. Rather, it would undermine the U.S. dollar by demonstrating in free market competition that the official U.S. dollar's true value is worthlessness, and she considers that possibility to be anti-American and those who support it to be terrorists.
It is imperative that everyone who reads this article understand the significance of what Tompkins said. In her view, as the official representative of the U.S. government in the case, if you advocate the use of gold or silver coins as money, you are a terrorist.
Some will claim that she was only referring to coins that are called "dollars" and that are made to look like U.S. dollars. Again, I refer them to her remarks.: "Attempts to undermine the legitimate currency of this country are simply a unique form of domestic terrorism." She clearly did not, and could not, mean that these coins were intended to look and feel like U.S. dollars. She also clearly believes that only paper money issued under the authority of the U.S. Treasury are legitimate currency, and that privately issued coins are not legitimate. She knows perfectly well that the whole purpose for creating the Norfed dollar was to replace paper currency with something of real value, and this is precisely the purpose that she considers to be anti-government and terroristic.
That Von Nothaus will appeal goes without saying. Of course he'll appeal, and rightfully so. Will he win? I wouldn't want to bet on it. Morally, in terms of the intent and spirit of the Constitution and its authors, he should win. Legally, the way the government has structured the law, he probably won't.
This is why I believe it is absolutely imperative for the liberty movement to put the same energy into supporting Congressman Ron Paul's H.R.1098: Free Competition in Currency Act of 2011 as they have put, and continue to put, behind H.R.459: Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2011, aka "Audit The Fed". H.R.1098 would allow the creation of private gold and silver based currencies to compete with the U.S. dollar., and it would repeal, among other statutes, USC 18-486. If they don't put the same level of support and intensity behind this bill that they put behind the idea of auditing the Fed, even with a full, open Fed audit, there will be no real hope of achieving real monetary change for the better. If that happens, then Tompkins, the government, the Federal Reserve, and banking cartel will win, and the rest of us will lose. In light of that fact, I don't think I have to say who the real terrorists are. It's pretty obvious.
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Posted By: Bill Gee
Date: March 21, 2011 08:58:53 AM
And this is what I've been saying from the start of our debate. No matter how "right" and "sensible" you are, the Federal Government feels threatened at the very notion that the Greenback may be worthless - most likely because they already know that it is - and that by introducing a competing currency into the money supply would rapidly devalue the Greenback and destabilize our entire economy.
That's why they've labeled you'all "terrorists". They see Von Nothaus as introducing a WMD into the financial sector, and I'll bet that Ron Paul's bill never makes it past Committee.
Unfortunately, all they're doing is prolonging the inevitable and multiplying the pain when the whole thing blows up.
That's exactly why I've engaged you in this debate. As long as we're a tiny minority of voices, then the Fed can stop us. But when we become a large plurality or even a majority, then the Fed can be stopped.
Even today, the Fed lost on a point on which they had never lost before during the entire history of the Fed. They were forced by the courts to release documents about which banks accessed the discount window in 2008. If the Fed is too powerful to defeat, that result should never have happened.
Are you a Harry Potter fan? I am. In the fourth movie in the series, The Goblet of Fire, Professor Dumbledore tells Harry, "Dark and difficult times lie ahead. Soon we must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy."
Ain't it the truth!
Every single significant political change in history started off as a minority view and became a majority view. This one is no exception.
The argument that we shouldn't resist, that resistance is futile, is the argument of surrender and submission to thugs, thieves, and bullies.
I think I made it pretty clear in my article what can be done to defeat them. Change the law. Support Ron Paul's bill.
Posted By: matonis
Date: March 22, 2011 06:44:07 AM
Walt, great piece and well stated. I am glad that I found this blog and I have now added it to my regular reads. We have truly entered the Orwellian twilight zone when Paper=Money, Gold=Counterfeit.
I have been covering these topics for many years at The Monetary Future blog http://themonetaryfuture.blogspot.com
Posted By: sarasile
Date: March 23, 2011 11:29:14 AM
The comment below was originally placed on Walt’s article, The Case For Competing Precious Metal Currencies. I am now placing it here in the comments to Bill Gee’s Rebuttal.
PS. I believe a typo in Walt’s article is responsible for the impression that Article I, sec. 10 allows the states to coin money. It actually prohibits the states from doing so.
Hello Walt, I just want to make a few comments in support of your (and mine as well) position that gold and silver coin need to resume their rightful place as the only lawful money in these United States.
Regarding Article I, sec. 8, Congress is tasked with “coining money” and “regulating the value” of such coin and “foreign coin”. The meaning of this is that Congress is given the exclusive authority (remember, Article I, sec. 10 prohibits that power to the states) to coin money, period. Not print notes to pass off as money (the Treasury Note or “greenback dollar of the war between the states period) or monetize debt as the Federal Reserve system today enables them to.
You rightly noted that Article I, sec. 10 prohibits the states from “coining money” but as that power was not granted to the federal government, and, as that government is one of “enumerated powers” and that authority is not granted, it does not exist. In Max Farrand’s book, The Grand Convention, which basically consists of all the known notes from all the delegates at the Philadelphia Convention of 1987, we can see that the power “to emit bills” to the Congress was considered and resoundingly rejected. The vote (one state, one vote) was 0 for, 12 opposed, 0 abstentions, and 1 not represented. (Rhode Island failed to send any delegates)
In fact, the main reason that the Philadelphia Convention even occurred was that the lack of a sound currency impeded trade and commerce so severely that it threatened the new nation’s very existence. Growing out of the Chesapeake Bay conference at George Washington’s home in 1785, where it was determined that the issue needed every state’s participation, to the Annapolis Convention of 1786, where only half the states sent delegates but decided to request the Continental Congress call for a national convention. This convention’s purpose was to promulgate and propose amendments to correct the defects in the current plan of government (the Articles of Confederation), which Congress did. This resulted in the 1787 Convention.
Some time later, after the power “to emit bills” was voted down, the issue came up again as a power for the states “to emit bills” with the consent of the Congress. This was opposed by most delegates and when it was voted on the vote was 0 for, 11 opposed, 1 abstention (New York’s two delegates voted for and opposed and so was treated as an abstention) and 1 not represented.
So there it is. The power for both the federal government and the states “to emit bills” was considered and overwhelmingly denied.
The powers that are granted the federal government in Article I, sec. 8, are “To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures.” This meant that the Congress would specify the amount of precious metal in the coins they minted, and determine the amount of metal in foreign coin to establish the exchange rate between United States coin and various foreign nation’s coin. Many foreign nation’s coins were legal tender in the US until 1857.
Returning to Article I, sec 10, where it says in part “No State shall…coin money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts;…we see that the states are prohibited from coining money but they are given the power to declare the tender in payment of debt, that power being restricted to only “gold and silver Coin”.
Again, there it is. No Thing is to be declared a tender to pay a debt in this country but gold and silver coin, period! That did not mean that private bank notes could not be circulated but it did (does) mean that no one can be compelled to accept something other than coin by a court or government. Of course they could (and often did) voluntarily accept something other than this if they chose, and that is the key distinction.
To learn more about this critical subject see:
“A Caveat Against Injustice; or an Inquiry into the Evils of a fluctuating Medium of Exchange” by Roger Sherman of Connecticut, the only person to sign all four of our founding documents. (The Continental Association was the first, it created the Continental Congress)
“A Plea For The Constitution of the United States of America; wounded in the House of its Guardians” by George Bancroft, historian, Secretary of the Navy, Founder of Annapolis Naval Academy and the only one ever to be granted full speaking privileges on the floor of the US Senate based on his person, not his office.
“The Grand Convention” by Max Farrand, noted Constitutional scholar.
First, thanks for reading and commenting. For the most part, what you wrote is good. Indeed, your detailed description of what happened at the founders' meetings is quite interesting.
I noticed a small error. You wrote: "The meaning of this is that Congress is given the exclusive authority (remember, Article I, sec. 10 prohibits that power to the states) to coin money, period." But that's not precisely true. Yes, the Constitution gives the power to coin money to the federal government, but it does not do so exclusively. For instance, there is nothing in Article I which prohibits the private minting of coins. The only exclusion for coining refers to the states. Just because power is delegated to the federal government by the Constitution doesn't mean that private rights are lost. They are not lost (and are guaranteed by the 9th amendment even if not enumerated in the Constitution). Notice also that the term "states rights" is an oxymoron, since the Constitution grants powers, not rights.
Your very interesting narrative about the steps taken by the founders is explicit. It shows quite clearly what the founders' thinking was, as I alluded to in my article. However, those steps do not prove constitutionality. I wish they did, but they don't! At most, they prove intent. Constitutionality is dependent upon what is actually written in the Constitution. At most, our understanding of the Constitution can be influenced by founder intent, but constitutional interpretation must be based on what's actually written there. Unfortunately, this means that whether or not the founders in committee at the constitutional convention voted down allowing the Federal government to emit bills is irrelevant to understanding constitutionality, because the prohibition is not written into the Constitution. That's the "sad" fact to which I alluded.
Now, could the Supreme Court, for instance, come along and decide that Article I Section 8's prohibition against emitting bills of credit extends to the Federal government as well? Sure, they could. They might even cite the same minutes you cited for precedent and grounds. However, in this event, it would be the Supreme Court's action which makes this interpretation of the Constitution binding, not the minutes of the meetings. Similarly, the Supremes could decide that those minutes are irrelevant. In this case, once again, the Supreme Court's actions would set the legal interpretation of the Constitution.
The most we can ever say about the founders' action at the convention is what their intent was (or might have been). We cannot rightfully extend that intent into a judgment of constitutionality. This fact demonstrates an inherent weakness in constitutional theory. The theory effectively prevents private citizens from passing binding judgment on the Constitution's meaning, even as an electorate. In other words, what we think is irrelevant. Yet, by the same token, the Constitution claims to be binding upon us all even though no person alive today ever signed it as a contract. See Lysander Spooner, No Treason, for elucidation on this point.
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 08:31:57 PM
Just jumping in to point out my comment posting.
For example Brett Bloxsom wrote:
“The jurors who were on this trial should be extremely ashamed of what they have just done.”
I think you will find that “jurors” may not play the bigger “role” for example in “THE STATE OF OREGON” You will find the following “case law”:
section 5-401. Verdict is general or special: [COLOR="blue"]Definitions[/COLOR]….........[COLOR="red"]A special verdict is that by which the jury find the facts only,leaving the judgment to the court. [/COLOR][L. 1862; D. sec. 210a;
NOTES OF DECISIONS:
A special verdict finds the facts only, leaving the judgment to the court. Turner v. Cyrus, (1919) 91 Or. 462, 179 P. 279.
A special verdict must state all the facts essential to recovery. Abraham v. Mack, (1929) 130 Or. 32, 273 P. 711, 278 P. 972.
from OREGON COMPILED LAWS ANNOTATED page 458
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 08:40:36 PM
My question is [COLOR="blue"]"Who or Whom" is the "person"[/COLOR] "convicted today on federal charges in Statesville"?
[COLOR="blue"]IMPUTED.[/COLOR] As used in legal phrases, this word means attributed vicariously; that is, an act, fact, or quality is said to be [COLOR="blue"]"imputed" to a person when it is ascribed or charged to him,[/COLOR] [COLOR="red"]not because he is personally cognizant of it or responsible for it,[/COLOR] [COLOR="red"]but because another person is, over whom he has control :o or for whose acts or knowledge he is responsible.[/COLOR]
Black's law page 891.
[COLOR="blue"]KING CAN DO NO WRONG.[/COLOR] This maxim.....It does not mean that everything done by the government is just and lawful, but that whatever is exceptionable in the conduct of public affairs is not to be imputed to the king, Stephen's Commentaries on English Law. 11th ed. page 486.
I found the following very interesting about "principle for" from Blacks 4th ed.:
[COLOR="blue"]KING-CRAFT[/COLOR]. The art of governing. page 1010
[COLOR="blue"]GOVERN. [/COLOR]To direct and control the actions or conduct of, either by established laws or by arbitrary will; to direct and control, rule, or regulate, by authority. Tucker v. State, 218 Ind. 614, 35 N.E.2d 270, 291. To be a rule, precedent, law [COLOR="red"]or deciding principle for[/COLOR]. Asnon v. Foley, 105 Cal.App. 624, 288 P. 792, 795. page 824
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 08:56:15 PM
One [COLOR="red"]may [/COLOR]get a better idea of what is going on "within" the "Place of this Trial" by reading the following:
[COLOR="blue"]KING'S CORONER AND ATTORNEY.[/COLOR] An [COLOR="blue"]officer of the court of king's bench[/COLOR], usually called [COLOR="red"]"the master of the crown office," :mad:[/COLOR] [COLOR="red"]whose duty it is to file informations at the suit of a private subject by direction of the court.[/COLOR]:p from Stephen's Commentaries on English Law pages 374, 378.
My questions to everyone is "who or Whom" is "U.S. Attorney Anne Tompkins"? "Who or Whom" is on the "face of the records", "within the Place of the court"?? Is all of the "persons" on the "face of the records" have a "standing" of a "Private person"?
[COLOR="blue"]PRIVATE PERSON.[/COLOR] An individual who is not the incumbent of an office. Blacks Law page 1359 4th ed.
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 09:12:39 PM
The following "term" [COLOR="blue"]may expand[/COLOR] a little on the "public benefit" of "legal tender"? :
[COLOR="blue"]PRIVATUM INCOMMODUM PUBLICO BONO PENSATUR.[/COLOR] [COLOR="blue"]Private inconvenience[/COLOR][COLOR="red"] is made up for by public benefit.[/COLOR] Jenkins' Eight Centuries of Reports, English page 85, Broom's Legal Maxims 7.
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 09:36:00 PM
Something to think about "within" the "Place" of this "case":
[COLOR="blue"]TERRITORIAL JURISDICTION.[/COLOR] Territory over which a government or a subdivision thereof has jurisdiction.
Jurisdiction [COLOR="blue"]considered as limited to cases arising or persons residing within a defined territory,[/COLOR] as, a county, [COLOR="red"]a judicial district,[/COLOR] :p etc. The authority of any court is limited by the [COLOR="red"]boundaries thus fixed.[/COLOR] See Phillips v. Thralls, 26 Kan. 781
Blacks Law 4th ed
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 09:53:20 PM
To expand a little on "boundaries thus fixed" from "CONSTITUTION OF OREGON":
Sec. 1 [COLOR="blue"]State boundaries.[/COLOR] In order that the boundaries of the state may be known and established, it is hereby ordained and declared that the state of Oregon [COLOR="blue"]shall be bounded as follows[/COLOR], to wit:
[COLOR="red"]Beginning one marine league at sea[/COLOR], due west...............including all [COLOR="red"]islands :pwithin the jurisdiction of the United States[/COLOR] .........said [COLOR="blue"]parallel to the place of beginning :mad:[/COLOR], including [COLOR="red"]jurisdiction in civil and criminal cases[/COLOR] [COLOR="blue"]upon........[/COLOR]
P.S. This should a big [COLOR="red"]red flag "within"[/COLOR] this case don't you think so??
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 11:06:10 PM
Expanding more on "Special verdict" from "within" "THE STATE OF OREGON":
Section 26-944. Special verdict: [COLOR="blue"]Definition:[/COLOR] Conclusions of fact: Adequacy: Drawing of conslusions of law. [COLOR="blue"]A special verdict is one by which the jury finds the facts only, leaving the judgment to the court.[/COLOR] [COLOR="red"]It must present the conclusion of fact, as established by the evidence, and not the evidence to prove them;[/COLOR] and the conclusions of fact must be so presented as that nothing remains to the court but to [COLOR="red"]draw conclusions of law upon them.[/COLOR] [L. 1864; D. sec 160;
[COLOR="blue"]NOTES OF DECISIONS[/COLOR]
[COLOR="red"]Special verdict defined in terms of the statute,[/COLOR]. State v. Setsor, (1911) 61 Or. 90, 119 P. 346.
Stipulation reciting facts leaving the court to pronounce judgment thereon, held to have been [COLOR="red"]treated by the parties as a special verdict,[/COLOR] see State v. Maddock, (1911) 58 Or. 542, 115 P. 426.
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 27, 2011 11:15:54 PM
For anyone willing to help me research:
[COLOR="blue"]Special Verdict [/COLOR]
A special finding of the facts of a case by a jury, [COLOR="blue"]leaving to the court the application of the law to the facts thus found.[/COLOR] [COLOR="red"]Statler v. U. S., 15 S.Ct. 616, 157 U.S. 277, 39 L.Ed. 700; Samlin v. U.S., C.C.A., 278 F. 170, 172. A special finding by the jury on each material issue of the case. Ford v. Brown, 45 Nev. 202, 200 P. 522, 525.[/COLOR]
P.S. Please post your findings about the above.:cool:
Posted By: ASSEMBLER
Date: March 28, 2011 11:59:33 AM
Does a "private subject" have a "rank" or "standing" for the "foundation" in a court of record?
[COLOR="blue"]PRINCIPAL., adj.[/COLOR] Chief;......[COLOR="red"]Highest in rank, authority, character, importance,[/COLOR] or degree. Bland v. Board of Trustees of Galt Joint Union High School Cist., 67 Cal.App. 784, 228 P. 395, 397.
If one is a "holder" of a "Liberty Dollar" does the [COLOR="blue"]"one" have "standing" as a "Principal"?[/COLOR]?
[COLOR="blue"]HOLD. v.[/COLOR] 1. To possess in virtue of a lawful title; as in the expression, common in grants, " to have and to hold, or in that applied to notes, [COLOR="red"]"the owner and holder," [/COLOR]Chicago Home for Girls v. Carr, 300 Ill 478, 133 N.E. 344, 346.
Is [COLOR="red"]"the owner and holder,"[/COLOR] [COLOR="blue"]wording used for a "Liberty Dollar"?[/COLOR]
P.S. Has anyone [COLOR="blue"]researched this??[/COLOR]