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Welcome to Capital Account. The accused Federal Reserve bomb plotter’s home country wants details on his case. While this may make headlines, we ask Lew Rockwell of the Ludwig Von Mises Institute about one aspect of the Federal Reserve that has not made front page news: how the Fed, with its printing press, may be making war easier. After all, if the people of the United States were asked to write a check every year to the IRS in order to fund the exploding deficits and rising interest payments on the national debt, would they continue to support all these wars? Randolph Bourne may have famously quipped that “war is the health of the state,” but it isn’t the health of the economy, this is for certain. If the American people could identify their miserable economic plight with the actions of the federal reserve and with the hundreds of billions of dollars spent every year on war and defense, it is reasonable to expect that they would simply refuse the burden all together. We will ask Lew Rockwell, Chairman of the Ludwig Von Mises Institute what he thinks, and if he thinks that war is made easier by a pliant and compliant central bank.
And, sticking with this issue of the Federal Reserve as the great “enabler,” what about it’s role in “disabling” and dismembering America’s dwindling middle class? How responsible is the Federal Reserve and its quantitative easing, zero percent interest rate policy for the plight of America’s economy and its society? The two main contenders for the presidency, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, speak often about the Fed. The candidates talk about supporting the middle class in terms of tax cuts, loopholes, and regulation but they don’t discuss the “money” in the middle class’s pockets. We ask Lew Rockwell, President of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, about what happens to the middle class if you don’t address savings.
And it’s the 25-year anniversary of Black Monday, but it’s also the 1-year anniversary of Capital Account’s launch! Lauren and Demetri respond to your birthday wishes and more in viewer feedback. Plus one of the more memorable exchanges in Tuesday’s presidential debate was the back and forth over pension plans: Obama told Romney “I don’t look at my pension. It’s not as big as yours so it doesn’t take as long.” President Obama might want to take a look at his pension, as it turns out it holds shares of the Las Vegas Sands corporation, owned by Sheldon Adelson, a major Romney backer. The holdings in his pension also include Domino’s Pizza, Exxon Mobil, China Life Insurance, Halliburton, and Altria (Philip Morris USA). Lauren and Demetri discuss the political landmine in Obama’s pension fund in today’s “Loose Change.” They also discuss Social Impact Bonds and how SIBs have made it easier for businessmen to combine philanthropic goals with business. The SIBs are loans made by investors to pay for a social program, and they require a government to pay a return on their principal investment if the program meets its agreed-upon goals. Lauren and Demetri talk about how SIBs make the market incentive for philanthropy more efficient.