Ellen Brown, author, attorney, speaker, activist

Ellen Brown is the founder of the Public Banking Institute and the author of a dozen books and hundreds of articles. She developed her research skills as an attorney practicing civil litigation in Los Angeles. In the best-selling Web of Debt (2007, 2012), she turned those skills to an analysis of the Federal Reserve and “the money trust,” showing how this private cartel has usurped the power to create money from the people themselves and how we the people can get it back.

In The Public Bank Solution (2013) she traces the evolution of two banking models that have competed historically, public and private; and explores contemporary public banking systems globally. She has presented these ideas at scores of conferences in the US and abroad, including in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Canada, Iceland, Ireland, Switzerland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Germany, Croatia, Malaysia, Mexico and Venezuela.

Brown developed an interest in the developing world and its problems while living abroad for eleven years in Kenya, Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua. She returned to practicing law when she was asked to join the legal team of a Ellen-photo2popular Tijuana healer with an innovative cancer therapy, who was targeted by the chemotherapy industry in the 1990s. That experience produced her book Forbidden Medicine, which traces the suppression of natural health treatments to the same corrupting influences  that have captured the money system. She also co-authored the bestselling Nature’s Pharmacy, which has sold 285,000 copies.

Ellen ran for California State Treasurer in 2014 with the endorsement of the Green Party garnering a record number of votes for a Green Party candidate. Her 330+ blog articles are at http://EllenBrown.com. The Public Banking Institute is at http://PublicBankingInstitute.org. She can be heard biweekly on “It’s Our Money with Ellen Brown” on PRN.FM.

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131 Responses

  1. The “join the debate” link at webofdebt.com does not work, at least with an Android phone.

    My suggestion for making banking work for all is general: let everyone decide important policies like thislike this via improved and national ballot initiatives. Make sure we all learn from experts like you (as in Oregon’s citizen initiative review) and may the best ideas win. Direct democracy is how we “gather the wisest sentiments,” as the Boston Town Meeting put it long ago: http://evanravitz.com/direct.htm

    I’ve been working on this since 1989, Guatemala being crucial in my political education. Here’s the illustrated story: http://spryeye.blogspot.com/2009/02/why-ive-devoted-20-years-to-better-and.html?m=1

  2. Ellen, I know that you have written on water issues before. I thought that you might find some documents that a number of us submitted to the State Water Resources Control Board on Friday of interest. The link to the document (and summary and press release) is available at the Sequoia Forest Keeper website,

    http://www.sequoiaforestkeeper.org/home0.aspx.

    If you have any questions concerning the document and the arguments contained within, Ara Marderosian of Sequoia ForestKeeper and I would be happy to address them.

    Sincerely,

    Todd Shuman, Camarillo, CA 805.987.8203

  3. Read your article on the Pope and banking. Usurious Jews? I seem to remember reading about Christian nobles not liking the Jewish competition and eliminating them so they could charge higher rates.

    A little like the current situation. There are lots of very large , predatory banks. But the poster. child for banking greed always seems to be Goldman Sachs. Could it be the Jewy name? Just sayin’ . . .

    Barry Hoffman

    • What’s the point here? Is Goldman Sachs greedy because it has a Jewish name or even owned by a few Jews? We still can’t conclude on the basis of just a few banks owned by predominantly Jewish stockholders that all Jewish owned banks will be greedy.

      I know it is hard to leave behind some of these prejudices we have.

    • Dear Professor,
      Please don’t get too hung up on the “Jew” theme. Absolute power corrupts anybody absolutely. Yes, Rothschild was a German Jew and shrewdly corrupt (and it didn’t end there) but this entire world system of deceptive banking practice over the past 250 years now in every national economy (with the exception of Iran, Cuba & North Korea) has permeated every culture, ethnicity and society since then. Thanks for your comments and it IS just like the current situation.

      • to quote ” Rothschild was a German Jew and shrewdly corrupt (and it didn’t end there) but this entire world system of deceptive banking practice over the past 250 years now in every national economy (with the exception of Iran, Cuba & North Korea) so it is no surprise that the West considers these three nations THE E N E M Y!!!

      • I Quote you…Yes, Rothschild was a German Jew and shrewdly corrupt (and it didn’t end there) but this entire world system of deceptive banking practice over the past 250 years now in every national economy (with the exception of Iran, Cuba & North Korea) has permeated every culture, ethnicity and society since then.

        You mention Cuba iran and north korea! the reason obama opened up borders to cuba is so that bankers could get control of cuba!
        2 to go.

        In the days of building the panama canal, a businessman, who seen he could make a fortune by getting the government to abdicate its authority over its construction, went all the way to the supreme court to petition government to abdicate its authority over a contract. in the Ryan etal, the supreme court ruled that it was illegal for congress to abdicate its authority!!!!!!

        over Christmas in 1913, congress illegally abdicated its authority and let the FRB print our money and add interest to the debt!

        Its time to fire the FRB and cancel the interest charged on the debt.
        I would add a one time forgiveness to all congressmen who sign up and “spill the beans” and give them full time protection.

        Make America beautiful…again.

        humbly…allan

        • You are absolutely correct about the Fed. What happened to their 100 year Charter? Didn’t it run out in 2013? WTF?

          • The charter ran out, yes. The Fed and the government are only waiting for the market to monetize gold currency from the grass roots, consumer driven. The proper price model for gold monetization had to be created beforehand and this was what was engineered and developed beginning at Bretton Woods in 1944

            We all have a choice now as to whether we want to circulate IOU’s or debt-free currency. We need to add the “Yang to the Yin” for market balancing.

            • This is nothing but double-talk. Wait for “the market” to monetize gold? There is no “market” that acts as an agent. People with power are the agents. Oligarchs. International financial controlers–think Rothschilds and Bilderbergers and GS and the private BIS. Also think China, which is not “the market”. The “proper” price model was established by Bretton Woods? Says you. There is no reason to believe this. You live in a fantasy neo-liberal economics world and need to read and understand Brown’s Web of Debt.

          • The Fed has been indefinitely charted and can only be closed “for cause.”

        • Crypto will kill the Fed. and it’s collection arm the IRS.

      • I Quby the name of Ryaote you…Yes, Rothschild was a German Jew and shrewdly corrupt (and it didn’t end there) but this entire world system of deceptive banking practice over the past 250 years now in every national economy (with the exception of Iran, Cuba & North Korea) has permeated every culture, ethnicity and society since then.

        You mention Cuba iran and north korea! the reason obama opened up borders to cuba is so that bankers could get control of cuba!
        2 to go.

        In the days of building the panama canal, a businessman, who seen he could make a fortune by getting the government to abdicate its authority over its construction, went all the way to the supreme court to petition government to abdicate its authority over a contract. in the Ryan etal, the supreme court ruled that it was illegal for congress to abdicate its authority!!!!!!

        over Christmas in 1913, congress illegally abdicated its authority and let the FRB print our money and add interest to the debt!

        Its time to fire the FRB and cancel the interest charged on the debt.
        I would add a one time forgiveness to all congressmen who sign up and “spill the beans” and give them full time protection.

        Make America beautiful…again.

        humbly…allan

      • Individuals should study a bit of History before speaking, or when trying to refute something,The Rothschilds were not German whatsoever, they all were jewish immigrants from Israel (100% Jews),their real last name was Jacob, but they adopted Rothschild as a last name after arriving in germany. Rothschild means red shield, because they had a small money loan shop, with a red shield, and everyone called them the Rothschild. But they are 100% jews from Israel.!

    • Yeah. Just look at the Federal Reserve. WASP through and through, eh? Why are we always finding Jews to blame (and this goes for the media as well) where there are none to be found? Was it Voltaire who said to find out who really controls you, just find out whom you are not allowed to criticize?

  4. Will bail-in terms and conditions for savings and checking accounts also apply to
    cash held in retail brokerage accounts ?Is a cash balance in a brokerage investment
    account any more “secure” than cash in checking and savings accounts?

    • I have this same question. Ellen?

      • …and I thank you for your seconding the motion Judi .

    • I have a similar question. I’ve been moving excess cash from my Wells Fargo bank account to my USAA savings and loan bank account as a result of learning about bail-ins and the dangers of derivatives, CDO’s, hedge funds. The people I spoke to at USAA said that their bank did not deal in derivatives and CDO’s and did not have problems in 2007-8
      when Goldman-Sachs and other large banks TBTF collapsed. But they were more in sales than management, so, I’d like some independent confirmation that a savings and loan bank does not deal in those instruments, even indirectly.

  5. The bank problem does not lie with any particular person nor group of persons. It lies in the very structure of banking. It is banking that needs to be fixed, not people.

    • Hello Mr. Charles3000. We meet again, and again agree with your opinion. I like to add that the fix needed for the banking system is what Dr. Ellen Brown is advocating “Public Bank” Additionally I like to mention to the specific, that the majority of the banks employee are not guilty of any crime on the contrary the upper echelons are guilty of “greed” because somebody must came-up with those policies of distruction and distraction ( for a larger plan New World Order). Glad to converse with you.

      • Thank you, Ercole. Ellen’s public bank proposal is one of four serious proposals to fix our monetary system. And her approach is probably the most doable but it does require extensive legislative action. Only one requires no legislative action. The proposal to mint T$ coins would, over time, fix the system and laws are in place to enable that to be done. Obama rejected the idea. A third approach is described at http://www.realmoneyecon.org. The fourth is called MMT and it proposes policy using the present system to attain the best that can be attained from it. As such MMTers are essentially apologists for the central bank system.

        • MMT does not support everything that some central banks propagate. It is neutral on many issues. It just describes the fact that the central bank is a source of new money creation (fiat money) and how inflation and deflation can occur in such a system. It does not support bail-ins. It also argues that the Treaty of Maastricht is basically for a deflationary system that favors the wealthy nations of the Euro Zone–for the time being. It also denies that deficit spending is a major problem, as is also the case, not a problem of the so-called national debt. The major problems right now are private debt created by private banks and other shadow banking institutions. They do not have the controls that the national government has on money creation. Right now those controls are excessively constraining.

          • There are no wealthy nations in the eurozone. Being monetarily non-sovereign, they all are impoverished.

  6. Liked article on Pope Francis too.
    Larry Carney

  7. HI Ellen Brown: You’re probably already familiar with this but if you aren’t:

    History of the principal public banks; accompanied by extensive bibliographies of the history of banking and credit in eleven European countries, collected by J. G. van Dillen in his quality of secretary to the International committee for the study of the history of banking and credit.
    Corporate Author International Committee for the Study of the History of Banking and Credit.
    Published The Hague, M. Nijhoff, 1934.
    Location Call No. Status
    Main (Gardner) Stacks HG1551 .I6 AVAILABLE

    Description 2 p. ℓ., [vii]-xii, 480 p. 25 cm.
    Series Contributions to the history of banking
    Contributions to the history of banking.
    Note Contributions are in French, German, English and Italian.
    Bibliography Bibliography: p. [353]-480.
    Subject Banks and banking — History.
    Banks and banking — Bibliography.
    Added Author Dillen, J. G. van (Johannes Gerard), 1883-1969.
    Added Title Public banks, History of the principal.
    Direct Link http://oskicat.berkeley.edu/record=b15415505~S1

  8. I wrote an poem on banking and our money system and history of comerce and debt and gold and the falacy of paper money and the biblical spiritual /references to gold and silver as money, and I’d love to send it to you I think youd be quite interested in it. please respond either through email or you can call me if you want 970 57103 58

  9. Your philosophy on the money system and the medical system are remarkable there just like mine… I’d love to talk to you .. my brother died of cancer about 3 months ago and I wrote a poem on our money system .d I would love to have you read. my name is Nelson Brent Akron Colorado my number is 970 5710 358

  10. Michael, re your comment” “If we use the USD to illustrate this point, the dollar is more than a debt based currency. It actually supports debt-free trading. This is a fact, not a theory or a “sales technique”.

    This is an interesting aspect of fiat money that I do not think is much discussed in MMT.

    Does that mean that values in different currencies are pared on the basis of negotiation and the market ? There is no external criterion of value, like gold, another nation’s currency (e.g. the dollar for Argentinans).

    Perhaps MMT discusses this in connection with floating the dollar in monetary exchanges. It is how the United States avoids getting their dollars deflated by foreign speculators buying dollars. Nations who peg their currency to another currency or borrow from other nations in the foreign nation’s currency, can have serious problems with inflation.

  11. Hi Ellen, I just finished reading your book web of debt. I I had no idea how money was created before I read your book. Now, thanks to you, I find that it is basically created out of thin air. Unfortunately, The people that are creating it are basically crooks. Our national government needs to regain control of creating money ( without interest payments) and relegate “the banksters” to their more traditional duties as bookkeepers ( accepting deposits and making loans to businesses that produce something of value). Thanks for educating me. I am sending your book to my brother for his birthday! Donald Larson

    • Accepting deposits and making loans automatically creates money.

      When you deposit dollars with a bank, the bank has your dollars and you still have your dollars. So the deposit itself creates dollars. (Otherwise, it wouldn’t be a deposit; it would be a gift.)

      All dollars are a form of debt, and when any entity creates debt, it creates dollars.

      That is true of every money system ever created or will be created. All money is debt. See: https://goo.gl/NLcNiF

  12. In the Jan. 6 interview with Greg Hunter, Ellen makes the comment, around the 21 minute mark, that the government, during the reconstruction era of the thirties, couldn’t get the Fed to finance or fund the Reconstruction Finance Corporation projects. My comment is this. If the Fed is dictated to by Congress, or the Treasury Dept., why could the U.S. govt. not get the Fed to co-operate in the RFC projects? My point is this. Too much energy/lip service is expended on the woes of a dysfunctional govt./fed., and how it is not serving “we the people”, and not enough focus is directed to exposing the ‘whos’ of this dysfunction. And besides, it isn’t dysfunction that is the dilemma, but crime perpetrated by supposedly elected govt. officials that take bribes from an illicit fed banking cabal to look the other way, take the bribe, and so “…woe is me, the Fed needs fixing.” As long as we allow these criminals to stay in place, breathe, and steal our productivity, they will never cease their criminality. Time for heads to roll, prison sentences, and executions. Quit talking about the malfunctioning government, and eliminate the criminals. How long will you tolerate a cancer in your body to rob your health? Hmmm? How long?

  13. Dear Alan,
    Excellent point! No congress or single administration will do anything to rock the apple cart anymore because over the past seventy years the wall street private banks and the European private central bankers were astute enough to parlay their profits into investing and buying up almost every profitable business venture to the point that they control almost every aspect of the private economies of the world., not only government economies as well. So how do we get rid of this evil cancerous disease? We start by passionately sharing what we know about the private “banksters” with everyone we know, individually and collectively until there’s a groundswell of revolt from a true grassroots effort by every single taxpayer. There will have to be such an outcry from the American voter that Congress and an Administration will have to take effective action. All of us need to become true “Monetary Reform Activists” By the way. I would suggest reading both of Ellen’s book on this topic, twice, because of the comprehensive information that she’s made available in “The Web of Debt” and “The Public Banking Solution”

    • I agree totally. Ellen’s public bank proposal is the most direct and pragmatic proposal on the table. There are, however, other good ideas out there and one I recommend everyone to familiarize themselves with is the “Chicago Plan on Steroids” described in http://www.realmoneyecon.org. It is definitely worth a read.

  14. Charles … Not sure if I would call it “most direct”. Personal monetization of bullion with no political entanglement would be far more direct , less complex and far more decentralized

  15. Solution:

    Direct democracy, local and permanent.. PERMANENT : 100% of decisions is made by local community… No even 0.5% is decided by secret society, oligarchy elected, international laws, globalist laws, new world order laws,etc..

    A true fair society where destiny of people is controlled by the people.. not few hands in elite group..

    Share it , popularize it…

    Thanks!

  16. A Calif community bank owner says “State should do business with community banks”. (SF Chronicle Insight section, 2/14/2016.) Suggest submitting to the Chronicle an op-ed argument for a state public bank instead.

  17. Saw you in Madison and know Kevin Barret. You do some very important work. I have an Masters degree in Finance, experience in corporate planning and research, and have some ideas about banking and how an economy should be run. Would you be interested in corresponding?

  18. Allen, what is your take on the proposal outlined in http://www.realmoneyecon.org ?

  19. Can you help me … Please?!
    My loans were sold by RBS owned Ulster Bank to Cerberus and I am now in Receivership . Promontoria / Aran manage the loans and my 4 lovely properties have had the locks changed
    and all the rent is being held back from me . My phone number is 00353876269745~ Thank you

  20. I am the owner of a real estate automation infrastructure company that is looking to open their own bank offshore using the bank of North Dakota model. The goal is to self fund real estate and own it in conjunction with the people that occupy it. I was wondering if I could speak with Ellen about consulting help and what she charges.

  21. I like the idea of creating a public bank, giving it all the Illinois pensions and then allowing it to go bankrupt! That nicely gets it around all the horrible laws that Madigan and the Democrat used for vote buying.

  22. I’m looking for cryptocurrency to rise enough to pay off my loan faster than initially calculated. If I complete that transaction, I should get a positive credit score to my credit profile. But all that will show is a delinquency for 7 years thereafter.

  23. Have you seen this?

    The Case Against a Basic Income

    https://www.jacobinmag.com/2017/12/universal-basic-income-inequality-work

  24. Ellen how to contact you by email, thanks Adel Di Palma

  25. Ellen,

    I see you will be on C2C tonight speaking about student loan debt.

    Here are the numbers from our student debt FYI. There were many times being unemployed or underemployed but the interest still piled up even with forbearance:

    Student Loan
    Original Loan 9/9/1994 – $9,579 (@ 3.83% Interest as of 2018)
    Paid to date 2018 ——— $13,207.13
    $ Still owed as of 2018 — $7,269
    Pay off date 4/20/2024= $98.24 A Month for 7 MORE YEARS!!!
    7 Yrs @ $98.24 Per Mth = $8,350.40 + $13,207.13 =
    $21,557.53 Total Paid on $9,579 Student Loan =

    =$11,979 Profit THUS FAR on $9,579 Loan with $7,269 STILL OWED

  26. Ellen;

    I appreciated your article: “The War on the Post Office”; and, I’d be grateful for your comments regarding:

    (1) Future relative security/safety of Postal Money Orders if/when U.S.banks become less accessible by the public.

    (2) Can you foresee any near term advantage for U.S. citizens to invest in Chinese currency (e.g., rampant inflation of the U.S. dollar)?

    Thank you,

  27. Hi Ellen,

    The Fed’s interest rate increases are not being accomplished by quantitative tightening, but by paying ~$35B a year in interest on excess reserves. This is a dangerous disequilibrium situation, engineered by Simon Potter.

    See https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/feds-big-experiment-elliott-middleton/

    Keep up the good work.

  28. My understanding is that interest-bearing loans, in which no money is created to cover the interest, demands growth of the economy. A model that requires growth is unsustainable on a finite planet. How does Public Banking help us deal with the huge problem?

    • Money for the interest must be placed into the economy by the Fed purchasing national debt instruments and/or the federal government spending sovereign money into the economy.

  29. Dear Ellen thanks for your efforts oddly banksters and health have been in my radar for many years: i am retired funeral director who also logged farmed owned construction firm and keeped my nose clean and mind occupied for that I offer any help you may need research or just handsome man in suit to stand by backup or bodyguard good luck peace joe

  30. Dear Ellen
    How about expanding on the following for your readers. It was the Treaty of Peace 1783 is a cause for all that has gone wrong to this date.

    The following are just a few items that the Founders allowed the King of England to claim shortly after the Revolutionary War.
    *The King was made Arch Treasurer and Prince Elector of the United States of America. What is it that is not understood about these two positions? Think Money, Banking and Votes.
    *The States were recognized as sovereign and the King’s men were to rule over these states as Esquires and Masons.
    * The King was given a share of all the Gold, Silver and Copper found in America.

    Now try and find a document that states what the people received as the spoils of war, as winner of the Revolutionary War or so called War of Independence. None exist.
    The people had no representation at this 1783 Treaty, Constitutional Convention, or the 1st Act of Congress. Therefore, we are not recognized as a sovereign people. Therefore, we have no control of our money and banking systems, Therefore we have no right to own our land with a free and clear title (Allodial Title), Therefore, we are Tenants (read your deed) on the land you believe you own and are required to pay rent in the form of taxes and fees. don’t pay those taxes and fees, they take it away from you to rent to another.

    Anyone want to take a guess what Rule of Law the King’s men forced on the people or due to the people’s silence = consent they received? Do you consent to having laws written by the King’s men and now the BAR?

    The people lost or gave up control of their money, banking, commerce, trade, land ownership and their justice system based on God’s Law, Natural Law, utilizing the MAXIMS as guidance for verdict and remedy.

    Just presenting the facts. Any questions?

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