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Subject:[socialcredit] Elaboration--Re: Question for Martin
Date:Tuesday, November 16, 2004  00:25:40 (-0800)
From:Joe Thomson <thomsonhiyu @....ca>

 
Bill Ryan has asked me to elaborate on this part of my question to Martin:~
"Douglas seemed to be of the opinion that the
Provinces, while constitutionally unable to issue
their own 'currency', very definitely controlled
their own 'credit'."
 
Previously Martin had written:~  "Almost from the moment of Aberhart's election, there was disagreement
between himself and Douglas as to the political course to be taken,
arising from the difficulty that Aberhart had no constitutional powers
over banking and currency, such legislation being disallowed, and the
Douglas schemes requiring such powers.
" (emphasis mine.)
I think the record seems to show that Douglas, himself, didn't propose anything that indicated he was unaware of the limitations to Provincial powers.  It will be remembered that prior to the Aberhart Social Credit government's election, Douglas had been engaged as "Reconstruction Advisor" to the Government of Alberta by the United Farmers of Alberta Party that then formed the government.  And he made his 'First Interim Report" to that government. 
 
In that report, Douglas stated, " The power of printing legal tender money, or that which passes as money, undoubtedly belongs to the Dominion, and has now been delegated to the Bank of Canada.  But it cannot be contended that this disposes of the question, since, if it did, banks would be prohibited from issuing cheques, which quite unquestionably pass as money, and are not Dominion or Bank of Canada documents."
"Further than this, matters of property and Civil Rights are the exclusive domain of the Provincial Government, and it is difficult to contend that it is not a Civil Right for an individual to write an order upon himself calling for the delivery of a portion of his property.  Such an order is effective demand.  Further than this, the Provinces are specifically granted the right to raise loans upon the sole credit of the Province.  Such loans are raised in money or credit instruments, and have to be repaid in money or credit instruments, and the interest paid upon them has to be  paid by credit instruments.  Therefore, if it be contended that the Provinces have no power to issue credit instruments, the phrase "the sole credit of the Province" has no financial meaning, although it may have a realistic meaning."
 
A little further in that Report, Douglas goes on to say, "  It is clear, and all experience confirms this view, that if credit instruments can be issued under the sanction of the constituted legal authority, in this case the Province, no difficulty arises in obtaining their universal acceptance within the range of the jurisdiction of the governing body."
 
And it seems that the 'credit instrument' he was referring to was a type of 'cheque'.  For his first advice to Aberhart, which Aberhart chose to ignore, was for the Alberta Government to seek a 'creation of credit' from a chartered Bank on behalf of the Province which would be the property of the Government, not a 'loan'.  And which would be accessible by specially marked 'cheques', which couldn't be 'cashed' in the ordinary sense, only deposited in the issuing bank.    For its services that Bank would be paid a one time fee for the 'credit creation', and further fees as necessary for additional bookkeeping to administer it  The special cheques themselves were to be popularised by giving them a 5% premium in payment of taxes, thereby encouraging their exchange for regular cheques payable at any other bank without restriction. 
 
Now it is a very interesting speculation whether this would have avoided all the difficulties that the Aberhart government found itself beset with when it chose to go a different route.  And also whether such a scheme would have actually worked, had one of the chartered Banks actually been approached and agreed to co-operate. 
 
But back to my original question.  Douglas contends, in a later letter to Aberhart, "As I see it, the raising of Loans by the Provinces without protest by the Federal Government in the past was an admission that the Provinces controlled their real credit, and a denial of their right to issue financial credit is a denial of their right to do their own bookkeeping." 
 
Now there seems to be no doubt that Provinces can raise loans on the ''sole credit of the Province'' still.  Even abroad, since much Provincial Government financing has been raised in New York, or London.   Nor is there any doubt they can do their own bookkeeping.  And even, as BC's WAC Bennett did by shifting direct Provincial debt into 'contingent liabilities', establish their own accounting conventions.  So was any of the Alberta 'Social Credit' legislation that was disallowed or declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court done so on grounds other than that of Provincial interference with Banking administration and policy, an exclusive Federal purview?  In other words, if there was no legislative impingement into areas of Federal jurisdiction, and the public of a Province agreed to it, is there any LEGAL constraint preventing the development of  Provincial ''Social Credit" using Provincially  issued 'credit instruments' somewhat in the manner Douglas originally had in mind ?
Joe





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