"Capital must protect itself in every way... Debts must be collected and loans and mortgages foreclosed as soon as possible. When through a process of law the common people have lost their homes, they will be more tractable and more easily governed by the strong arm of the law applied by the central power of leading financiers. People without homes will not quarrel with their leaders. This is well known among our principle men now engaged in forming an imperialism of capitalism to govern the world. By dividing the people we can get them to expend their energies in fighting over questions of no importance to us except as teachers of the common herd."
J. P. Morgan
[John Pierpont Morgan] (1837-1913) American financier and banker
Questionable: No reliable source for this quote has been found. Attributed to: Private Communique to Leading U.S. Bankers only, 1934
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- Peter, Melbourne     
  • 2 1
    This quote is not reliable. This was a propaganda quote created out of thin air to demonize bankers. This quote is what an uneducated child imagine's rich people to say.
     -- Mark , Houston     
  • 1 1
    Amazing quote, I love it. Even if he never said it, I'm sure it's engraved in the minds of the rich as a valid mantra.
     -- Alex, Washington DC     
    John Pierpont Morgan WAS a wealthy American financier. However, he gave away money to the urban poor, and donated many of his collections. He bailed the American nation out of serious financial trouble more than once. He never said this, and it is not a crime to be rich.
     -- Sarah     
  • 1
    There is an almost identical quote attributed to a Civil Servants Manual - found under the topic "Money" at this site - so that may be the origin.
     -- Jane, Meredith, NH     
    If you take this quote as an assessment of character instead of business principles, obviously you have no idea how to create (and keep) wealth.
     -- Michael, Huntsville, AL     
     -- Anonymous      
    It doesn't matter who said it, it is what drives the fiat credit system. In ancient Israel originally, a lender (using wisdom) gave money to a borrower and treated it as a gift. All integrity, morality, honesty was on the borrower to pay it back, The country became wealthy. "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." (John Adams)
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 1
    Didn't Morgan float the rumor that several of his competitor (banks) were insolvent, leading to a crash in which he picked up those banks for a song? I'm thinking 1920s / 30s. And didn't Morgan / Chase just pick up another bunch of financial company's? Seem,s like they're always right in the middle of it.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
  • 1
    the more things change, the more they stay the same...
     -- allen, DC     
    I would advise anyone to avoid going into debt. Debt is slavery and when you have debt, you are a slave.
     -- jim k, austin     
  • 1
    This explains banking to a tee. It could have as easily been said by today's central bankers -- pick a country. Jim has it right -- stay out of debt. (Why is 'staying out of debt' such a strange idea?)
     -- E Archer, NYC     
  • 1
    There were other people besides J.P. Morgan, that in their later years felt fear of punishment of a God for their misdeeds. Andrew Carnegie, and John D Rockafeller did so also. They gave out dimes to children in playgrounds, this after destroying thousands of lives. Somehow it doesn't quite cover the sins. No, being rich is not a crime. Being evil, crushing people, destroying other companies because they will be fair competition, causing misery and death is a crime, against man and God.
     -- Billy Yank, Boston     
    Sounds like a contrived quote to me. As bad as the bogus Bush Cheney quotes
     -- warren, olathe     
    This quote is most likely from Karl Marx. J. P. Morgan bailed out the US government on two occasions and saved the US economy on several occasions. After he died the US government created the Great Depression and there was nobody to bail them out.
     -- Mary, Sterling, VA     
  • 1
    So if one believes that one person would have the ability to save the US economy in whole by themselves, then you must also understand and believe, that type of power and control would be exactly what would supply this mindset and the ability to save or direct a saving action only for their own benefit in the end.
     -- Lee, Portland     
  • 1
    This was an actual QUOTE: Congressman Charles A. Lindbergh, Sr. revealed the Bankers Manifesto of 1892 to the U.S. Congress somewhere between 1907 and 1917. BANKERS MANIFESTO: We (the bankers) must proceed with caution and guard every move made, for the lower order of people are already showing signs of restless commotion. Prudence will therefore show a policy of apparently yielding to the popular will until our plans are so far consummated that we can declare our designs without fear of any organized resistance. Organizations in the United States should be carefully watched by our trusted men, and we must take immediate steps to control these organizations in our interest or disrupt them. At the coming Omaha convention to be held July 4, 1892, our men must attend and direct its movement or else there will be set on foot such antagonism to our designs as may require force to overcome. This at the present time would be premature. We are not yet ready for such a crisis. Capital must protect itself in every possible manner through combination (conspiracy) and legislation. The courts must be called to our aid, debts must be collected, bonds and mortgages foreclosed as rapidly as possible. When, through the process of law, the common people have lost their homes, they will be more tractable and easily governed through the influence of the strong arm of the government applied to a central power of imperial wealth under the control of the leading financiers. People without homes will not quarrel with their leaders. History repeats itself in regular cycles. This truth is well known among our principal men who are engaged in forming an imperialism of the world. While they are doing this, the people must be kept in a state of political antagonism. The question of tariff reform must be urged through the organization known as the Democratic Party, and the question of protection with the reciprocity must be forced to view through the Republican Party. By thus dividing voters, we can get them to expend their energies in fighting over questions of no importance to us, except as teachers to the common herd. Thus, by discrete actions, we can secure all that has been so generously planned and successfully accomplished.
     -- eyeswideopen2c, Anacortes WA     
  • 1 1
    The quote is allegedly from The Bankers Manifesto of 1934 - published 21 years after Morgan's death. Check it out on the net. But it could easily have been said by Mitt "Corporations are People" Romney or the Koch Bros. or any of the other fat pigs who run the global banks, corporations, and brokerages that own our Congress and Senate.
     -- CONELRAD, Surf City, CA     
    The quote is a fabrication, not only not Morgan, but not from the banking industry at all.

    The original Manifesto, or as it was called "Wall Street Letter", was published in the Chicago Daily Press of March 21, 1892, "found" by a T.W. (Thomas Westlake) Gilruth, People's Party speaker and writer, some-time newspaperman, real estate broker, and lawyer.

    A full account of this is available online in the Southern Mercury, Dallas, Texas, Thursday, November 15, 1894


    The account was called into question by multiple contemporaneous sources, including The advocate and Topeka tribune. (Topeka, Kan.), 07 Sept. 1892. and 14 September, 1892 (the second instance occurring as Gilruth's name was misprinted in the first):


    "The Great West and one or two other exchanges reproduce the Chicago Daily Press fake purporting to be a Wall street circular. The thing originated in the fertile brain of F. W. Gilmore [sic: should be T. W. Gilruth], who held a position for a time at the Press. He has been challenged time and again to produce the original if it is genuine, and has failed to do so. The thing is a fraud and so is its author, and neither of them is worthy of the confidence of the people."

    Also in the Barbour County index., July 06, 1892, p. 1.


    Multiple other internal aspects don't check out. The purported signatory, an "H Zimmerman", and his organization, the "Bankers and Brokers Central Committee of Chicago", and a mentioned bankruptcy of "Murrits & Co." or "Murris & Co." leave no historical record.

    Later appearances claim publication in the the March, 1892 edition of Banker's Magazine. Archives are available and "The Bankers' Magazine and Statistical Register - Vol. 47 (July 1892 to June 1893" shows no record of either the Manifesto, Murrits & Co. receivership (among the elements that are conspicuously recorded are bank's bankruptcies), etc.


    More detailed documentation at "J.P. Morgan and the Banker's Manifesto of 1892 Hoax"
     -- dredmorbius, altair iv     
  • 1
    It looks academic to me. History bears this out, in particular with the housing crisis, that has emerged from the Dec 2007 recession, in which the United States is still submerged. Nearly eight years later, the housing market has not recovered to its former strength, and as the last presidential campaign revealed, nearly half of Americans are on some kind of subsistence from the Federal Government, making them both dependent and compliant to the agenda of the controlled political parties and the Oligarchs, like Morgan, in charge of them.
     -- Anonymous, Panama     
  • 1
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