Do you think it’s an accident?

Do you think it’s just a case of bad management?

Do you think the proposed $700 billion taxpayer bailout of U.S. financial institutions just happened?

I don’t think so.

In fact, I think it’s part of a master plan – one pushing us inevitably, inexorably closer to a closed cashless global economic system of total control.

I know. This seems like an extreme statement. It sounds like I’ve drunk deep of the conspiracy Kool-Aid. But let’s take a look at history.

In the beginning, crops and livestock were the measure of a man’s wealth. But it wasn’t always convenient or easy to trade or barter for other things people needed because of the need to capitalize quickly on a harvest or to offer goods and services far from home.

So people and nations developed systems of coinage, usually based on the intrinsic value of metals like gold and silver. This system worked well for a long time, thousands of years, in fact.

But large amounts of gold and silver were often difficult to move around. So the idea of paper currency, representing holdings of gold and silver, was the next phase. I’m sure it took a lot of persuading to convince people that paper really had value. I’m sure there was distrust at first. But, again, it was more convenient, and people accepted it.

One thing that makes it easier for governments to persuade people to accept monumental changes in the way they conduct commerce is a crisis. In the 1930s, we had such a crisis in America. There are still arguments today about what caused the Great Depression – whether it was part of a natural cycle, an accidental disaster or a conscious plot by greedy men. But it happened, and, a few people profited greatly from it – as did government.

In 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt ordered the confiscation of most gold from private citizens. They were to turn in their holdings in exchange for paper currency. This might be a tough sell to freedom-loving people in ordinary times, but these were not ordinary times. America was in the midst of a crisis. Officials explained their currency would be backed by gold in Fort Knox, so people complied.

What resulted in the coming years, through World War II, was one of the largest expansions of government and government power in American history. Along with it, Americans lost much of their liberty.

In 1971, President Richard Nixon announced the federal government would no longer redeem currency with silver. That was the last vestige of a dollar tied to a hard metals standard in America. From then on, the dollar was just a piece of paper that relied solely on the confidence of people who used it to conduct commerce.

Another major development in the way people conducted commerce came about in the 1960s with the widespread introduction of the credit card. Coupled with the development of computer technology a decade later, currency began to be replaced in monetary transactions with electronic debits and credits.

By the 1970s, there was already talk of a cashless society – though few could yet really imagine it. Today, it is inevitable. Worse yet for freedom-loving working Americans, the sanctity of national sovereignty is simultaneously breaking down. The European Union’s common currency strongly suggests a growing trend toward regionalization and eventual globalization of monetary policy and standards.

It will just take us a few more crises to bring us to the nightmare reality of a closed cashless global economic system of total control – a few more crises like the one we are currently experiencing in the U.S. financial system.

Today, Americans can’t work without a Social Security number. They can’t open a bank account without one. It is used as the most common form of identification for Americans by government as well as the private sector. Yet, when it was introduced – and right through the period in which I received my first Social Security card in the 1960s – it clearly stated it could not be used for identification purposes.

Today, we have “smart cards” that contain all kinds of useful data about people. The next phase of the plot to take away our privacy and our liberty will be the widespread use of RFID (radio frequency) chips. You don’t need to swipe your card any more. A silicon chip inside gives off a radio frequency that can be detected even if it is in your pocket.

Talk about convenience! I predict the day is coming soon that all of us will be encouraged to accept the implantation of chips like this so we will no longer have to carry cards, driver’s licenses, keys to start your car and open your locks at home. This is not science fiction. It’s science fact. All that holds it back from use is the next crisis.

Then, the next phase, of course, will be mandatory implantation of the chips. You will no longer be permitted to buy or sell privately. The government will have a record of every purchase, every transaction.

Do you want to understand how and why you just spent $700 billion – and probably a lot more – bailing out financial institutions? Do you want to know how this took place with very little debate or controversy? You must understand where we are headed and who is taking us there.

Americans have lost control of their own destiny. Elections don’t mean much. Congressional debates are illusory. We are on a path to tyranny. Neither Barack Obama nor John McCain is going to stop it. Neither a Republican Congress nor a Democratic Congress is likely to slow it down.

Most Americans seem ill-equipped to understand what’s happening or to comprehend the forces at work behind it. They seem more concerned with their basic needs and material pleasures than the fact that they are losing their birthright of self-government and individual freedom – that their children will never experience the promises of the Constitution.

What just happened? To simplify it, the government just got a lot bigger and more powerful, which means another nail was just hammered into the coffin of American liberty. And, in one of the largest wealth transfer schemes in history, a few wealthy and powerful individuals just got wealthier and more powerful – at your expense.

But this is not the end. This is not the final fix. This is not the final solution – not by a long shot. There will be more consolidations of power and money. There will be more “reforms.” There will be more regulations, more restrictions on the way you conduct your affairs, more centralization and control.

Thirty years ago, I recall thinking how a prophecy in the Bible seemed a little far-fetched, like some science fiction fantasy. Today, we can see the handwriting on the wall. Some will ridicule me for stating it so bluntly. I don’t care.

We’re a lot closer to Revelation 13:16-17 today then we were a week ago:

“And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”

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