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Understanding that the highly secretive Federal Reserve has had a major role in undermining the value of the U.S. dollar, and unregulated and unaccountable non-government agency had pretty much done whatever it has wanted almost since its inception in 1913, a consensus in growing in the U.S. House that the agency must be reined in and transparency initiated to find out what they are and have been doing: both recently – and hopefully – in the past.

To that end Ron Paul introduced H.R. 1201: Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2009, in order to have a complete audit conducted by the Government Accountability Office, whereby all the dealings of the Fed and current Chairman Ben Bernanke can be brought out into the open for all of us to see.

Ron Paul has been fighting this battle for decades, and now through the current economic crisis, more of a magnifying glass has been focused on the Fed and the possible role they had in creating and expanding the problem; something past Federal Reserve Chairman and their misguided policies have done. The good news is now over 300 co-sponsors of the bill have signed on, and should be brought out of committee by Barney Frank for debate and a vote.

The concern now is will it have any teeth or be changed to the point of irrelevance. It seems there is a real and genuine concern about the Federal Reserve, and there being a real need to look under the hood to see what they’ve been secretly doing. The fact that the Fed is fighting as hard as it publicly can shows they are very nervous about how some of their decisions and actions will be viewed by Americans and their representatives, reinforcing the fact that it’s far past time to bring things to light. IT looks like that time will come sometime in the next year.

Most Americans are largely clueless as to the unprecedented power and effect the Federal Reserve has on their lives, a it has the power to print as much money as it wants and sets interest rates, while having direct impact on our lives as consumers in a myriad of ways.

This should have obviously been done years ago, once the decision to have a Federal Reserve was made, as it controls our lives, and by extension, the lives of people all around the world through its decisions and actions, which are made without the knowledge and oversight of anybody other than boards of governors of regional Fed offices.

Among the many things that need to be brought out into the open and seen are the deals it makes with the central banks and politicians of foreign countries, and how they went beyond their mandate and started rescuing businesses outside its purview, like automakers and AIG, as a couple of examples.

When you come right down to it, no agency with this type of power can or should be allowed to make decisions like they’re making without anyone knowing what’s going on. Secrecy and making deals behind closed doors should have been a red flag decades ago for the Federal Reserve, and hopefully this will be the first step to largely weakening and undercutting what Ron Paul has called a “rogue agency,” when comparing with the State Department if had been operating in the same manner the Federal Reserve has.

If nothing else, the recession has brought a mix blessing in this area, as the Federal Reserve, at minimum, will no longer be allowed to operate with impunity like it has been, and at best, citizens and lawmakers will start to understand the role it has played in the ongoing destruction of the value of the U.S. dollar and the boom and bust periods since its inception. Once that happens, we may eventually lead to the goal of Ron Paul of eventually putting an end to the Fed.