Co-hosted by noted public banking author Ellen Brown and PBI's chair and media guru Walt McRee, each episode of "It's Our Money" offers new perspectives, deeper information, and articulate interviews with thought leaders and activists fighting for a democratic and just economy. Join Walt, Ellen, and guests who connect the dots on public banking, the restoration of the commons, global finance, and more.
The People Are Coming for Their Money – 12.13.18
In so many ways and places around the world, citizens are expressing their intention to reclaim wealth that has been siphoned from their lives and local economies by the mechanisms of private capital control. Banks and governments are both targets for the wrath and revolutionary ideas that have arrived in France and are heading to Washington. In this edition, Ellen talks about the emerging Green New Deal idea that uses the Fed and a network of public banks to finance a sustainable future and social equity. And she talks with author and economics professor Dr. Jack Rasmus about the mechanisms of the Fed and financial markets which undermine the prospects for realizing the public’s interest in economic fairness. But some folks aren’t waiting: Walt and Ellen talk with Me’Lea Connelly, a founding Director of Village Financial, a new black-owned credit union co-op that is changing the economic prospects of a long-underserved community.
The Mouse That Roared – 11.28.18
A group of smart, undauntable, unpaid citizen volunteers just reaped a statistical victory for public banking in the nation’s second largest city, Los Angeles. While actually losing the total vote count, Public Bank LA got almost half the vote and delivered over 420,000 votes on a recent public banking referendum with only a couple weeks to work and virtually no money to campaign. We talk with Trinity Tran and Ben Hauck of the citizen movement behind this ballot initiative, Revolution LA, about how they did it, why they did it, what they were up against and what’s next. And we revisit a conversation with author and professor George Lakey as he talks about how citizen initiatives like Public Bank LA helped Scandinavia become one of the happiest economies on the planet.
Retrospectives – 11.15.18
For our 100th program since beginning almost 5 years ago, we’ve assembled a retrospective of conversations with select special guests delving into the many fascinating aspects of our monetary and banking systems. Noted economist Michael Hudson talks about the history of monetary systems and banking control, Canadian government icon Paul Hellyer discusses globalist plans for preserving monetary control in the hands of a few, the predatory lending imposed on our cities and states is reported on by Roosevelt Institute fellow Saqib Bhatti, and the charade of under-scaled regulatory agencies charged with protecting our financial systems from fraud is described by preeminent professor and forensic regulator Bill Black. Ellen and Walt discuss recent public banking voting results in Los Angeles and Bob Bows provide his final installment of global economic and spiritual transformation.
Regenerating Nature and the Economy – 10.26.18
Our debt-based capital regime appears oblivious to the essential demands of Nature and the regenerative systems that are our most foundational economy. The urgency of our climate crisis means transformative reform of our monetary relationships is desperately needed. Responding to that need, our guest Ed Quevedo, Director of Regenerative Design at the Foresight + Innovation Lab in CA, has been working with economic and policy leaders to build a New Regenerative Economy (NRE). This California-based initiative is complemented by other CA progressive movements that include the push for a Los Angeles public bank. Co-host Walt McRee talks with Marc Armstrong, who is consulting for PublicBank LA, a vibrant, smart group of young activists intent on creating a public bank in the nation’s second largest city by winning a measure placed on this fall’s ballot by the L.A. City Council. And commentator Bob Bows delivers the next installment of his new book on transforming global economies.
Wall Street Owns the Country – 09.27.18
So what are you going to do about it? Well, you could join with a growing number of your neighbors in supporting creation of regional and state-owned public banks. Nothing stands in the path of all-consuming usury like the presence of a publicly-owned alternative that doesn’t extract the life-blood of an economy. We discuss developments in CA and Los Angeles and get an update on Oakland’s process with a former US Treasury Policy Chief, Paul Pryde. Commentator Bob Bows offers his next book installment on how we can turn money into a public utility, and economist and author Mark Anielski discusses his new book An Economy of Well-Being: Common-sense tools for building wealth and happiness.
Banking Bits – 09.12.18
From the largest public bank in North America (it’s not in North Dakota!) to the growing concern that the world’s central banks are poised to control global markets, to the long-range macro-agenda of core global financialists, this week’s program dives into banking’s various vestures and vicissitudes! The Alberta Treasury Branch in Edmonton, Alberta has been operating a full-service public bank for 80 years now, it’s many times larger than the Bank of North Dakota; economist Mark Anielski describes its beginnings and the promising power of its future. Ellen discusses a recently revealed concern that world’s central banks are taking major positions within stock markets, threatening both market balance and economic dominance, while commentator Bob Bows continues his series looking behind the curtain of global control by the monetary powers.
For Wonks and Quants – 08.24.18
We like putting monetary realities in perspective and sometimes we might drone on a bit about the inner workings of money and our banking system. It’s fascinating! This week we continue our extended conversation with one of America’s brightest monetary intellectuals, Dr. Robert Hockett, who talks with Ellen about our monetary system and how things might reasonably change and upend our debt-based money system. Also, reporting from behind the curtain of monetary control, Bob Bows continues his exposition of how the lords of global finance keep us at each other’s throats — while they cash in.
Looking Under the Hood, We find ... – 08.10.18
Smoke and mirrors? The world of finance is built on mutual agreements quantified by digitized records representing the full faith and credit of someone, whether an individual or a country. Not gold, not silver, not paper. Ellen’s guest, Dr. Robert Hockett, says its time to create a 21st century banking architecture capable of retiring the middlemen of private banks and turning the Fed into a public utility capable of freeing us from compounding usurious debt; it can even free us from the myth of monetary scarcity. And guest commentator Bob Bows provides historical context by exposing the story of money and usury in the first installment summarizing his 7 Steps to Global Economic and Spiritual Transformation.
Banks Don't Lend Money and They Don't Take Deposits – 07.26.18
They don’t? Banks don’t lend money? “Since when?” you might ask, only to find out they never did – at least according to this week’s featured guest, Southampton University’s noted professor Dr. Richard Werner. Common misperceptions about how banking works distort our reality about banking functions and capabilities by seasoned semantic miscues that make us think we’re borrowing the bank’s money when they never had it to begin with, and that we’re just letting them hold our money when we make a “deposit” when, in fact and law, we’re giving it to them. This week’s edition will let you look at banking and its current realities in new light, and we even take you back a couple hundred years to see how banking’s deceptive role-playing shaped our nation’s history.
Backwards and Forwards – 07.06.18
When we look back at the history of banking in America, we can see the formative patterns that have shaped that industry over the past couple hundred years. Ellen’s guest, Jim Hogue, in a reprise of their earlier conversation, discusses who and what players were on the stage at the outset of our country, and how their ghosts continue to haunt the banking industry. Looking forward, Ellen discusses our infrastructure finance challenges and a simple way for CA, and the US, to save trillions of dollars over the coming years. And, what will the consumer culture of the future look like? Can we maintain our consumption-based economic system? Author and Dr. Maurie Cohen discusses his book The Future of Consumer Society – Prospects for Sustainability in the New Economy.
Thinking Change – 06.26.18
Among emerging monetary ideas that could change our economic future is a new blockbuster notion: give each of us our very own account at the Fed, just like the Big Banks! It’s a well-developed, transformative idea being supported by high-level Treasury veterans as well as our own Ellen Brown, who discusses it’s great potential on this edition. Like other systemic changes needed to create a more fair economy, the “big idea” must first be envisioned, then adopted, for transformative changes to be realized. That is how it happened in Scandinavia about a hundred years ago, which threw out its controlling 1% and turned squalor into globally-renowned abundance. We talk with author & professor George Lakey about those “Viking Economics.” And commentator Bob Bows gives you the 8-minute chapter-and-verse description of why our current monetary matrix is beyond redemption.
Making Change – 06.06.18
The lock-down on control of our money by private banks is facing increased challenge in a variety of forms, from technology that creates new methods of exchange, to the public uprising for creation of new public banks. Today we speak with an exciting group of young activists in CA that have already accomplished some remarkable achievements, including a unanimous vote by the Los Angeles city council to foster a public bank and divest from Well Fargo, based on ethical demands. The student loan crisis is also receiving an ethical challenge from Andrew Yang, who has started his campaign for the 2020 presidential race calling for a universal basic income. And Ellen discusses how the massive hedge funds Black Rock and Black Stone control trillions of public dollars investment that exert overbearing pressure on how our money gets invested to create private profits rather than public benefits.
Scarce Money, Abundant Problems – 05.16.18
Public acceptance of unacceptable conditions produced by a privately-controlled money world has institutionalized struggle and sacrifice through unnecessary monetary scarcity. The growing worldwide call for public banks is helping create a new expectation – that money is a common utility that all people have a right to and that retaining public control of it for public purposes is simple common sense. On this program the benefits of a proposed public bank in New Jersey are illustrated in a new academic report from Distinguished Professor of Economics, Dr. Deb Figart, who speaks with Walt McRee about her recently completed study findings, while Ellen discusses the impact of neoliberal economics on the hardships being inflicted on students in higher education. And Bob Bows offers another look behind the curtain of monetary control driving today’s global conflicts.
Screwnomics – 04.18.18
This is the tongue-in-cheek, double entendre title of a new book by Rickey Gard Diamond, writing about how women have been systematically denied equal treatment in the economy. She and Ellen discuss EconoMan, the avatar for the economic powers-that-be who are a small group of privileged males which “just expect” to be in control and expect women to work for less, or even better, for free. But while the book title refers to economic inequity for women, it also covers the economic injustices that most of world’s citizens experience as a result of the private issuance of currency, which is the primary function of banks. Commentator Bob Bows discusses how this situation has firmly established the 1/100,000th of 1% of the world’s population into perpetual and seemingly indomitable power.
Going Postal and Going Local – 03.28.18
About 25% of Americans don’t have access to basic banking services such as check cashing and money transfers, often forcing them to rely on expensive charges from street corner profiteers who fill the void. While local banks aren’t always available, post offices are, and they could fill this banking void if only the Congress would allow it. We talk with Katherine Isaac of the American Postal Workers Union about a national campaign to bring back postal banking. Later, Ellen talks with the founder of Cooperation Humboldt, David Cobb, about an effort to model a new type of local economy that leaves no one out. And Walt talks with Rhode Island’s former Secretary of State Matt Brown — the latest candidate to run for a governorship on a public banking platform.
Good Banks – 03.07.18
It’s not an oxymoron. We need banks for quite a number of our civic, economic and personal lives. Bank’s role is so important to communities that it would be tough to live with them, which is why we say that banks need to belong to the public and serve as public utilities. We talk with Ivan Frischberg of Amalgamated Bank, a 100 year old American bank begun by a populist demand for fair banking services, about how that bank is making a solid difference in everything they do. And we also speak with Wayne Lau, the Executive Director of the Rainier Valley Community Development Financial Institution – two bankers who fill the bill of being “good banks.” And then there was Alexander Hamilton – is the super successful Broadway show “Hamilton” a whitewash of history? We speak with Bob Bows about his research on Hamilton’s questionable legacy.
Infrastructure and the National Debt – 02.15.18
Why can’t we have nice things? Why can’t we have safe bridges and roads, excellent schools and so much more that we need and can actually afford? Why, the national debt, of course! The use of our national debt as an excuse to not directly fund these essentials is an institutionalized deception used to keep us locked into a mindset of scarcity that requires ever-expanded borrowing from private sources. Ellen discusses why China isn’t having this problem with funding of their needs, Walt talks with Donald Cohen about the push for privatization, economist Michael Hudson talks about the façade of national debt and author/philologist Robert Bows discusses how the history of private issuance of capital has stymied our growth for centuries.
An Economy Worthy of Our Affection – 02.01.18
The very notion that an economy could deserve an emotional response seems to unreasonably mix metaphors; how could economic activities elicit heart-warming affection? Yet economies can be devised to either deprive or enrich their participants, which suggests that we can craft ones that secure, enable and nurture work and life relationships. Are we living in an age on the verge of creating such new economies? Our guests this week, Dr. Edward Quevedo and economist Mark Anielski, suggest that new economic metrics and values must be employed to keep humanity viable.
The Web of Student Debt and other 2018 Challenges – 01.17.18
Through regulatory capture, banks and other powerful corporations are able to maximize their profiteering, usually at others’ expense. A particularly egregious example of lending abuse is in federal loan programs designed to help America’s college students. Ellen talks with Alan Collinge of Student Loan Justice about this exploitive financing regime, and co-host Walt McRee speaks with Mike Brown of LendEdu.com about a new aspect of that financing sector, student loan debt refinancing. Ellen and Walt also review some of the challenges confronting public banking efforts around the country.
A glancing overview of America’s economy discloses significant deprivation and inequality among citizens, corporatized institutions, co-opted politics and diminishing prospects for an increasing number of people. These conditions are neither acceptable nor necessary according to Kevin Zeese and Dr. Margaret Flowers, the leaders of Popular Resistance.org. Ellen and Walt hold a year-end discussion with them about the developing crescendo calling for transformative change which they believe is coming to America in the not-too-distant future. And Ellen discusses her latest article on the growing problem of massive student debt, which now exceeds that of national credit card debt!
Politics and Public Banking – 11.27.17
The excitement surrounding the inclusion of public banking in political campaigns is now shifting gears into the nitty-gritty process of educating and encouraging legislators and candidates to move forward. This week Ellen and Walt discuss some of these races and the issues that propel them, we talk with a NJ State legislator about whether the new governor there will be able to pursue his state bank agenda, and we uncover another new gubernatorial candidacy that may also drive for a public bank. Ellen’s guest Stephen Lendman returns to the show to reflect on the larger political and civic issues affected by our private banking regime.
Globalization vs. Happiness – 11.01.17
We’ve been told that marketplace productivity is irrefutable evidence of economic efficiency and a precursor to consumer happiness. But that meme is a self-serving axiom designed to consolidate wealth, power and systems control into the hands of global corporations. Ellen’s guest Helena Norberg-Hodge is the producer of the award-winning documentary The Economics of Happiness and author of Ancient Futures. She is also founder and director of the NGO Local Futures, which has been a pioneer in the emerging global-to-local movement. Helena shows from her studies with native peoples that economies centered in local production are superior to globalized economies in both efficiency and a happiness quotient for citizens.
Paying for Catastrophe - 10.18.17
Whether a flood, fire, hurricanes or a failed financial system, the Federal Reserve and the US Treasury have the means to address big financial challenges in a variety of ways – if they want to. Recent devastations challenge our understanding of how to pay for recovery, but when we look back to our not-so-distant past, answers emerge in a clear and encouraging way. Ellen’s guest is Law Professor Tim Canova, an expert on banking, finance and the Federal Reserve, and candidate for the Congressional seat of Debbie Wasserman Schultz in Florida.
Crypto-Chango and Truth in Accounting - 09.27.17
Ellen Brown reflects on the true nature of money at the Nexus Conference in Aspen, bringing to a renown body of monetary and financial experts the notion that cryptocurrency systems reflect the reality that money is not a fixed inventory of assets but a fluid and fungible source of mutual credit. And co-host Walt McRee discusses the true nature of our public accounting systems with Truth in Accounting Research Director Bill Bergman, who shares what the real numbers of public debt are and how they are often hidden from public view. Also, a re-visit with Civic-Labs’ Tom Tresser discussing his book “Chicago Is Not Broke – Funding The City We Deserve.”
The Coming Revolution in Banking and How Banking Really Works Now - 09.20.17
Crypto currencies will likely change the future of banking in transformative ways, and there’s even a chance that it could help democratize citizen’s control of their money. Ellen is just completing a book on the subject and discusses how technology is changing the banking landscape. Meanwhile, we welcome noted economist Michael Hudson to the show to disclose in no uncertain terms how the banking cartel traps entire economies into virtually inescapable debt slavery. And co-host Walt McRee provides a retrospective on Wall Street as the worst example of corporate domination.
Alternating Currency - 06.14.17
Global monetary expert Bernard Lietaer has said that a country would be more stable financially if it had multiple currencies focused on specific sectors of the economy – the idea being that if one goes down, the others can continue to provide needed financial services. Ellen’s guest is Lionel Denenberg, the tech genius behind PayServices, a crypto-currency concept already authorized to create alternate local and state “money” systems that could serve special needs like the growing cannabis industry. Co-host Walt McRee talks with the former president of the Massachusetts Growth Capital Fund, Charles Grigsby, who is helping public banking advocates bring forward a new infrastructure bank in the MA House based on public banking principles. And there’s been a big win for public banking in New Jersey!
Bankers Get Paid First - 05.31.17
Ever notice that regardless of what additional level of public suffering is required, payment of bank debt by governments transcends all. Debt is the mechanism by which private capital interests retain and control power over public interest and prospects, which is why creating public banks is so important for our cities, counties and states. This week Ellen talks with a renown and prolific contributor to the public discussion, Stephen Lendman, to take a look at how the new administration fits in with the interests of the global financial regime. And co-host Walt McRee talks with Donald Cohen of In The Public Interest which now reports weekly on the trend of privatizing public assets that enrich private interests.
Fixing the Infrastructure of Finance - 05.17.17
As public physical assets deteriorate the world over, profiteers and corporatists are anxiously positioning themselves to profit from their bursting new markets of imminent demand. If you’re a government trying to serve those needs but don’t have a reliable source of affordable funding, like your own public bank, you’re stuck with the scalpers. Bridges aren’t the only failing civic infrastructure – banking is too. Fortunately, public banks can fix them both.
PBI Chair Walt McCree, PBI Founder Ellen Brown and Senator Roberts from Australia discuss infrastructure funding through public banking. Later in the show, McCree interviews PBI Vice Chair and Arizona Rep. Pamela Powers Hannley regarding corporate welfare and trickle down economics with public banking to grow local small businesses, new industries, and a sustainable economy.
Bernie, Ralph & Michael - 05.03.17
When three catalytic change agents, Bernie Sanders, Ralph Nader and Michael Hudson, agree that public banking is the way to go, you want to go there! This week’s “It’s Our Money with Ellen Brown” does just that by looking at why one of America’s most prominent public officials, an anti-corporate national icon and “the world’s best economist” are new passengers …
It’s Our Money – Dirty Deals! – 04.19.17
“Dirty Deals” is the name of a definitive report about Wall Street’s interactions and financing contracts with cities, counties and states nationwide. It’s a gloves-off look at the many ways public entities are forced to acquiesce to abusive usury in their private-bank-capital borrowing practices for public projects and how we can take effective steps to reverse them. Saqib Bhatti, co-director of Action Center on Race and the Economy (ACRE), discusses why these core financing issues are driving governments around the country to consider public banking and in-house financing mechanisms, and why some of them don’t want to.
Anthropologist Margaret Mead is famously quoted as giving credit for most social and cultural change to small groups of individuals who pioneer new priorities and establish new systems. That certainly describes many individuals around the country who are working on the American public banking frontier with multi-year commitments of time, talent and energy, going through the hoops, chicanes, reversals and exhilarations required for creating entirely new banking institutions dedicated to democratizing control of public money for public benefit. We talk with several of these pioneers about their motivations, process, challenges and concerns – snapshots of 21st Century American democracy – as the movement for public banking picks up speed from coast to coast.
North of the Border, Up Canada Way……
It’s Our Money – Can History Please Not Repeat Itself? – 01.25.17
The earliest days of private banking cartels in America occurred before we were the United States. The pattern of private capital determining government policy is centuries old – but so is the sort of public interest banking emerging in the US now. Ellen’s guest Jim Hogue, an author, broadcaster and historian, recounts how the struggle for control of finance rocked the early American colonies and precipitated a permanent war footing enabled by big finance. Later, cohost Walt McRee talks with Dr. Maurie Cohen about his latest book dealing with the future of consumer society and whether we can create a sustainable post-consumerist economy.
It’s Our Money with Ellen Brown – It Won’t Be Long Now – 12.08.16
It’s not “Doom and Gloom” to focus on the impending changes to our planet being caused by our prevailing economic systems.
It’s Our Money – Who’s the Boss and Are We Being Fired? – 11.21.16
When in the course of human events we lose sight of who’s really in charge, trouble looms. Western civilization has upended the natural order by placing itself above the true power in our world, Mama Nature. But now the arrogance of the Money Tribe has gone too far and we’re losing our lease on our happy home. We hear from some ancient and elderly wisdom sources, first from a Mohawk teacher and linguist and later from one of our own elders, Noam Chomsky. We also talk with Gwen Hallsmith of Global Community Initiatives who just returned from the World Water Summit in Hungary where global capital is salivating over a new investment opportunity bigger than oil: water! Still messing with Mother Nature…
Bemoaning what our government does with our money is an endless lament for many. But when our personal banks get involved with things we find intolerable such as exploitative lending or environmental injury, a new window of responsiveness opens up. That was the realization of this week’s guest Fran Korten, publisher of Yes! Magazine, who began a national “Move Your Money” moment in support of the protests at the Dakota Access Pipeline – she identified the banks who were investing in it, shared it, and then the fun started. We also visit with Paul Glover, creator of the Ithaca dollar, which demonstrates how a complementary community currency can create a breakthrough for local economies by creating a new layer of wealth. Then we get brought up to speed on the progress of citizens in Santa Fe, NM where efforts to create a local public bank have crossed another threshold toward realization. And PBI Senior Advisor Mike Krauss discusses how critical the role of governance is to insuring that new public banks don’t get coopted by the Powers That Be.
It’s Our Money – Local Power to the Rescue – 08.17.16
Improving the quality of life and local economies is a concern best addressed by local citizens. Today we revisit how the remarkable commitment of “Non-partisan” North Dakota citizens wrested state control from monopolist outsiders and produced lasting changes that continue to benefit them a century later. Guest David Morris, a co-founder of the Institute for Local Self Reliance, talks with Walt about how we need to reclaim the narrative that government can and should work well on our behalf. And Ellen talks with “The World Belongs to Everyone” author Alana Hartzog about how our current method of taxation overlooks a more obvious and fair approach based on land and the Earth itself.
Paradigm Shift: Going Local -- 07.20.16
Globalization has given giant private interests virtually free reign to influence policies and institutions that undermine local interests. This dominant economic paradigm in which private interests trump public interest is being pushed back by emerging forces ranging from new financial technologies, social media and changing populist narratives about the importance of effective public governance. Ellen speaks with global economist, author and futurist Hazel Henderson about these changes, Walt talks with David Morris of the Institute for Local Self Reliance about those changing narratives and Matt Stannard discusses threads of endemic racism that manifest in private bank practices. And we check in with one of our colleagues about why they will be demonstrating at the Philadelphia Democratic Convention about the role of money in our democracy.
Heading for the Exits – 07.06.16
Ellen Brown talks to Stephen Lendman about the financial and economic causes of the Brexit vote. Matt Stannard discusses the North Carolina legislature's use of infrastructure funding as a club to enforce onerous immigration policies. Also: What Wall Street and hedge fund vultures have done to Puerto Rico.
It’s About Control – 06.22.16
Mayer Rothschild is famously quoted as saying “Permit me to issue and control the money of a nation, and I care not who makes its laws!” – and so it is. When we look at the distribution of capital, we see that those who control the franchise of creating money through loans and debt rule our world. Ellen speaks with one of the planet’s oldest serving statesmen, Canada’s Paul Hellyer, about the nature of this controlling franchise and about the alternatives still available. Walt McRee speaks with Lisa Cody, a researcher for the Service Employees International Union, who did a landmark study of the outrageous costs Los Angeles has paid private financiers as part of our ongoing series What Wall Street Costs America, and Matt Stannard comments on the increasingly popular idea of providing a basic income to people as one way of balancing the scales against the controlling interests.
The Little Bank that Could, Part Two -- 06.08.16
We continue our conversation with the preeminent historian of the Bank of North Dakota, Dr. Rozanne Enerson Junker, about the founding factors and functional dimensions of America’s only state-owned public bank. Ellen discusses block-chain technology with co-host Walt McRee while this week’s What Wall Street Costs America examines the impact of predatory banking costs on the city of Detroit -- Matt Stannard talks with Tom Stevens of “Detroiters Resisting Emergency Management.”
The Little Bank that Could, and Did, and Does – 05.25.16
The Bank of North Dakota started a century ago with the simple goal of service to citizen victims of the Wall Street monopoly. It now inspires the hopes of citizens nationwide, as they struggle to wrest their financial freedom from the same financial masters. Ellen talks with Dr. Rozanne Enerson Junker, who got her doctorate studying how this upstart institution took on the big banks and turned a challenged economy into a financial powerhouse of service to its owners, the people of North Dakota. Walt McRee talks with Tom Tresser about a new collaborative book called “Chicago is Not Broke – Funding the City We Deserve” -- there’s more money laying around than most citizens know. And Matt Stannard discusses What Wall Street Costs America with a focus on Detroit and Harrison, NJ – yet more victims of the global banking cartels that keep America under the thumb of debt servitude.
Pursuing Populist Politics – 05.11.16
Almost 100 years ago, populist politics marched across America in reaction to the same sort of monetary monopoly that is depriving this century’s citizens of their hard-earned assets and wealth. That deprivation has mobilized an angry, fed-up backlash of folks willing to support any candidate who will talk straight and promise real change. Several candidates are rising to the challenge. Ellen talks with Tim Canova, a law professor and Fed expert facing off against Congressional Democratic insider Debbie Wasserman-Schultz in South Florida – out West, a State House Representative candidate Pamela Powers-Hannley runs on a platform calling for a public bank to stave off the deteriorating state economy and using inspiration from 100-years ago; and Matt Stannard talks with the award-winning author David Dayen whose new book Chain of Title reveals how a few plucky citizens pushed back against the Goliath of Wall Street mortgage fraud.
The Cancer Stage of Capitalism – 04.27.16
Economies are life forces – interdependent systems built upon the facts of life and living. “Life capital” as Ellen’s noted guest Dr. John McMurtry says, is at the heart of true economic reckoning, and money is merely one derivative. McMurtry describes Capitalism as being in a cancerous stage in which it’s being devoured from within by metastasizing greed and self-interest, devouring all living materials in its path. Similarly, we look at the new What Wall Street Costs America project and get specific about how that cancer reality looks in Jefferson County, AL, which declared bankruptcy after buying into toxic interest rates swaps from Wall Street salesmen. One thing though – we also talk about the antidote for that cancer: public banks!
You’ve Been Strip Mined! – 04.13.16
You’ve Been Strip Mined! That’s how Ellen’s guest Les Leopold describes what has happened to the constructive role of capital, such as investment in research and development, expansion and improvement of services and industries. He calls it “economic strip-mining” in which capital speculators like hedge funds strip the equity of companies, countries and consumers to feed their insatiable desire for short term profits - outcomes be damned. We also introduce the new national project and campaign called “What Wall Street Costs America” – the start of a national conversation revealing the massive extraction of public dollars by Wall Street interests. And Matt Stannard reviews presidential politics and bank reform on the Public Banking Report.
Cash Scrapped – 03.30.16
Kiss your cash goodbye! The word is that things would be more convenient, crooks would be confounded and diseases might be thwarted if we’d just get rid of filthy currency as the most essential form of personal financial liquidity. Currently circulating in the corridors of world financial powers, it may appear as an enlightened technical step forward to eliminate cash, but is it also a stalking horse for yet another way global bank interests can separate you from your assets? Ellen speaks with renowned author and media figure Stephen Lendman about why this idea is appearing now and what’s happening behind the scenes that’s moving it forward. Also behind the scenes is a huge and stark reality about municipal debt to Wall Street that the Public Banking Institute is targeting in its new project called What Wall Street Costs America. Co-host Walt McRee speaks with PBI’s Matt Stannard on this groundbreaking campaign.
Purloining Profits from the Public – 03.16.16
When legislators here and abroad gave power to private bank interests to supply the money for their national economies, it was a thickly-veiled ruse that set the stage for complete debt subjection of all public interests. Our notional national debt levels are the proof. So it is with great interest that we delve back into a continuing legal struggle over the Bank of Canada’s chartered responsibilities for interest-free public investment. We remind you of some simple truths from 12-year old Victoria Grant about the Bank of Canada and Ellen’s guest, Dr. J. Ryan Collins, discusses the policy that foisted a change on B of C’s virtuous history. And Matt Stannard reviews the benefits that reside even in failed legal challenges of this sort.
Is George Orwell Smiling? – 02.17.16
Perhaps he’s just smirking, as the merged worlds of global finance and transnational government play out their collaborations of control and deception in the name of a new world order they control. Ellen speaks this week with noted historian, economic researcher and journalist William Engdahl about some backstory facts that belie popular news story narratives from mainstream reporters and government authorities. “War is Peace” is just one of those. Later, we revisit another powerful narrative deception rolling our way in the form of the Trans Pacific Partnership as we look at some of its deceptive and unbelievable features with anti-TPP activist Kevin Zeese. And Matt Stannard brings it all home with his insightful observations about how these factors play out in our global climate reality.
What’s It Going to Take? – 02.03.16
People all over the world who just want a fair chance to thrive in their local economies are confronted with the seemingly indomitable, supra-governmental power of global private financial interests. But this hasn’t stopped them from trying – and some are making good progress. Ellen talks with public banking protagonists in Ireland and England about their homeland efforts in the face of deeply entrenched money powers while co-host Walt McRee talks with PA Project Founder Mike Krauss about a breakthrough in their efforts in Philadelphia. And Matt Stannard discusses our universal sense of fiscal vulnerabilities on the Public Banking Report.
Sacred vs Mundane? – 01.20.16
Would replacing our commodity-based economic model with one that prioritizes human-interest qualify to be called “Sacred Economics?” That’s the name of a book by Ellen’s guest this week, Charles Eisenstein, a highly popular radical re-thinker of the nature of human economy. Eisenstein observes some of the inherent flaws in our economic thinking and reminds us that we are the ones in a position to create new priorities. And co-host Walt McRee speaks with Santa Fe public banking leader Nichoe Lichen of Banking on New Mexico, which this past week saw release of a very positive city feasibility study that supports creating a new city-owned public bank.
Can Inequality Drive Systemic Change? – 01.06.16
After finally realizing that our economic system is designed to keep us away from the fruits of our labors, citizens will hopefully rise up and start working to manifest the sort of sustainable changes that are truly possible if we work together. Ellen speaks with noted author and co-Founder of the Labor Institute, Les Leopold, about how the market mechanics of inequality have succeeded over the past 40 years and what we can do collectively to bring about real change. She also discusses her latest article about the looming crisis that could be triggered by the new practice of bailing-in depositor money to save failing banks. And Matt Stannard delivers some words about money from the mouths of historical figures.
Looking Back – Watching Out – 12.23.15
This past year saw the crossing of financial boundaries and traditions around the world as economic and political events continue to make the monetary horizon an ever-changing realm. Digitized dollars and cash-less societies, global banks overruling national democracies and growing populist demands for economic fairness all help shape a view forward suggesting turmoil and perhaps real trouble for dominant bank institutions -- and hence our own prospects. Ellen speaks with Wolfram Morales of the German Sparkassen savings banks that have taken it on themselves to help preserve the success of local banks around the world. And co-host Walt McRee joins Ellen and public banking commentator Matt Stannard for a retrospective on the year’s financial stories that they thought significant.
Addressing A Digital Divide - 12.09.15
Digital currency is destined to change almost everything about our money systems and management. The traditional gatekeepers of credit, and the types of credit issued, are also changing. This week Ellen talks with Scott Smith, an author, financial innovator and presidential candidate who achieved great success in the old mechanics of money but sees a brighter path ahead with simple changes that can do away with income tax and the national debt. Co-host Walt McRee speaks with the CEO of a community-dedicated credit union choosing to leave the business because of harassment from the federal agency that oversees them. And Matt Stannard takes a retrospective look at the past year in public banking news.
Is Your Money Better Off in a Mattress? – 11.25.15
As European central banks employ negative interest rates (you pay the bank to keep your money) as well as all-digital currencies that give bankers virtually complete control over your access to it, this question is not silly. What are the bankers really up to? Ellen speaks with co-host Walt McRee about these developments and then talks with evolutionary economist and world-renowned futurist Hazel Henderson about how far afield economics has gone from its practical obligations to serve public interest. Matt Stannard discusses banker logic and negative interest, and common logic about the need for a basic income for everyone.
Flush the TPP ..... One More Time - 11.11.15
What Democracy? - 10.28.15
Too Big to Last – 10.14.15
End of the Line – 09.30.15
It’s Nature’s Way of Telling You – 09.16.15
If Capitalism is so great, then why….. – 09.02.15
The Centrality of Central Banks – 08.19.15
Revolting - 08.05.15
We’re All Greeks Now! - 07.22.15
Greece-y Mess - 07.08.15
Mad as Hell - 06.24.15
Monetary Reform: Trending - 06.03.15
System Failure - 05.20.15
When trains derail and bridges fall, oil pipelines burst, water dries up and people live without homes, one might reasonably conclude that the fundamentals of civic systems are not being met. But these chronic occurrences are also signs of a different type of systemic failure – a failure of public and spiritual priorities caused by the dominant paradigm of profits over people. This week Ellen speaks with the distinguished philosopher, ethicist and author John B. Cobb about how system failure is inevitable if priorities are corrupt. And co-host Walt McRee talks with Joe Guinan about the launching of a new collaborative effort to create Next Systems to replace the failing performance of money-centric ones. Finally, Public Banking Reporter Matt Stannard reflects on his world as a happy, but troubled, Amtrak traveler.
Connecting the Dots - 05.06.15
At what point are you willing to challenge your own notions of what’s really going on? Can you even imagine that the mavens of the Money Power would threaten human survival to serve themselves for even bigger personal profits? Ellen’s guest, researcher Dane Wigington, has a trove of data to suggest that they would. And they do so in the form of geoengineering, a covert tool allegedly being used to control natural systems for private profit. We also hear commentary from Matt Stannard about the economics of the Baltimore uprising and from Marc Armstrong about America’s only publicly-owned depository bank, the Bank of North Dakota, which just issued its latest annual report -- it’s another record-setting winner!
Next! - 04.22.15
In the world of monetary reformists, there’s a clear understanding that things not only shouldn’t continue as they are, they can’t continue as they are – that systemic failure is upon us as current social and political outcomes tear at the fabric of civil life. Ellen speaks with Gar Alperovitz, one of America’s most venerable reformist thinkers and policy experts, about his new “The Next System Project” to help design and precipitate what should happen next. Also, maybe the national debt is unnecessary after all – author Scott Baker talks with co-host Walt McRee about his new book “America is Not Broke,” and Matt Stannard reports on the financial travesties imposed by Wall Street on American cities.
They Own You - 04.08.15
Many of us aren’t shocked by the recent Princeton study that declares we’re clients of an Oligarchy, not citizens of a Democracy. After a bracing audio clip by George Carlin, Ellen traces how the seeds of American Oligarchy were planted centuries ago by our financially-enforced subservience to the money elite. These seeds have now become a thick forest of obfuscation about the nature of money and our ability to create and control it -- Ellen talks with author and professor Carl Herman about how to break through the mythology of money. And co-host Walt McRee talks with Ira Dember of CommonomicsUSA about their initiative to create a monetary awakening for America’s mayors.
World Water Wars - 03.25.15
Dangerous stressors are converging around the growing demands for water the world over. Corporations and private capital are positioning themselves to take control as environmental changes turn humanity’s most essential element into just another commodity for profiteers. Why aren’t affordable alternatives being pursued? Might this even be intentional? The usual culprits behind the monetary curtain are all here ready to let you drink, if you pay them. Ellen speaks with Roger Landry on possible reasons.
When three catalytic change agents, Bernie Sanders, Ralph Nader and Michael Hudson, agree that public banking is the way to go, you want to go there! This week’s “It’s Our Money with Ellen Brown” does just that by looking at why one of America’s most prominent public officials, an anti-corporate national icon and “the world’s best economist” are new passengers …