Tuesday, May 05, 2015

May 4, 1515: Reign of the Loansharks Begins

500 years ago the Pope of Rome made possible the beginning of the rule of the Money Power over the West

By Michael Hoffman

Medici Pope Leo X

On May 4 1515, the 500th anniversary of which was this month, Medici Pope Leo X (Giovanni di Lorenzo de’ Medici), issued a papal bull permitting interest on loans of money if the loans were to the poor. This revolutionary permission was granted for so-called charity banks, which were known as Monte di Pieta, which translates as “mountains of compassion,” but quite a bit of the revenue ended up in the hands of the Medici bankers, not the poor, and even if these usury banks had been operated for the alleged benefit of the indigent alone, they were violating God’s law and creating a precedent for more usury.

Pope Leo X initiated a process of gradualism, whereby the Church's immemorial dogmatic law against the charging of interest on loans of money was incrementally relaxed and diluted, leading to a papal revolution —  the complete abolition of all ecclesiastical penalties for usury by Pope Pius VIII in his revolutionary bull of Aug. 18, 1830, Datum in audientia — as well as the absence of all such penalties in the 1917 and 1983 Codes of Canon Law. 

The thesis of this writer’s book, Usury in Christendom: The Mortal Sin that Was and Now is Not, is that the Renaissance Roman Church parted ways with the Church of All Time. It trafficked in fake relics and indulgences as supervised by the Fugger bankers of Augsburg. The Fuggers, with the support of the Hapsburgs, were far wealthier than any single Italian banking dynasty, including the Medici. Did you ever even hear of the Fuggers? Did you know that grievances over their operations were a motive for Martin Luther’s rebellion? The Fuggers controlled the transfer of revenues from the German Church to the papacy. Their loans to the pope brought them a portfolio of revenue-collecting privileges, including from the sale of indulgences. 

In 1519 the Fuggers bought the election of Spain’s Charles V as Holy Roman Emperor. Of the 851,000 Rhenish Florins raised to purchase the office for King Charles, the Fuggers contributed 543,000 florins. They were usury bankers to the popes and to the House of Hapsburg.  In September 1514, eight months before Leo X’s relaxation of the usury ban, papist theologian Johannes Eck of Ingolstadt, Luther’s nemesis, served as the corrupt mascot for the Money Power, as personified by the banker Jakob Fugger. Eck argued in a debate at the Carmelite monastery in Augsburg, that loan contracts at five percent interest were justified.

Is it a coincidence that Medici Pope Leo X issued his papal bull “Inter multiplicis” allowing for the interest-charging Montis Pietatis, the very next year? The pontiff anticipated the unpopularity of his bull and therefore threatened to excommunicate every Catholic who spoke against his gradualist overthrow of the magisterial dogma, by his relaxation, in the name of  charity, of the immemorial proscription against all interest on loans of money. 

Apologists for Leo X put forth a loophole for his exoneration: they quibble that he did not actually change the dogma on usury, just the pastoral application of the dogma. Yes, that’s true, and it was precisely these “pastoral” means which were employed gradually over the centuries from May 4, 1515 onward, to transform usury from a mortal sin to no sin at all.

 This “pastoral” technique for nullification of the Law of God should be familiar to all students of the devious tactics of revolutionary change agents, among whom the most notable contemporary example is the current pontiff, Pope Francis, the spiritual heir of Giovanni di Lorenzo de’ Medici.

Adherents of the Church of Rome often scapegoat Protestant leader John Calvin for being the first to initiate the usury plague. Calvin was not yet six-years-old when Pope Leo X issued Inter multiplicis. 

No pope after Leo X restored the true Catholic Church’s immutable dogma. Every subsequent pope either did nothing or extended the incremental permissions. Toothless anti-usury bombast from Leo XIII and other popes served to camouflage the devious, gradualist process at work. (Benedict XIV’s masterpiece of dissimulation, Vix Pervenit, advertised as a monumental anti-usury jeremiad, contains a sly loophole for the continuation of usurious operations. “Catholic” usury banks continued to flourish in the wake of Vix Pervenit). 

The Cryptocracy uses similar tactics in different situations. If we study the methods and double talk by which Thomas Cromwell and Thomas Cranmer began to dissolve Catholicism in England in the 1530s we will observe the methods and double talk by which every pope from Leo X to Pius VIII  and onward, dissolved Almighty God’s bulwark against the Money Power (Luke 6: 34-36).

On May 4, 1515 situation ethics began its reign over Rome. After 500 years it is time to face the truth about the Renaissance papacy and its successors. To fail to do so is to ensure that God’s Law and His Church remain occluded and marginalized, while the Money Power’s most devastatingly effective tool continues to destroy the abundant life that is our heritage as heirs of Jesus Christ.  The love of money is the root of all evil. Usury is the weaponization of that love. All subsequent evils which have beset us emanate from this greatest of all iniquities. 

Copyright©2015. All Rights Reserved.

For Further Research:

 Usury in Christendom (softcover, 416 pages) may be purchased hereAn index to the book is available online free of charge at this link

Questions for Hoffman concerning his book about usury

Hoffman is the editor of the journal Revisionist History, published six times a year. 

He is currently at work on his eighth book, “The Occult Renaissance Church of Rome.” 

Michael will give two talks on June 20 and 21 at the America’s Promise Bible Conference in Sandpoint, Idaho. Contact Pastor Dave Barley for further information at apmbarley@gmail.com or tel. 208-265-5405.


Unknown said...

The Fuggers scarcely get a mention in your book on usury. Why now? Damage control? The revisionist revises his stance; you could interpret that as growth, but for an old fucker like you it looks like you were full of shit the whole time.

Michael Hoffman said...

The usurious "Catholic" banking house of Fugger is mentioned on pp. 148, 174-175; 177; 204; 250 and 328 of "Usury in Christendom: The Mortal Sin that Was and Now is Not."

Northsider said...

I'd be more open to his thesis about the culpability of the Renaissance popes if Mr Hoffman didn't have such romantic delusions about Luther, Calvin and the Puritans. It's a matter of historical record that Luther was a man who condoned fornication, lying, and indeed sin in general. It's also a matter of historical record that many of the Puritans were proto-libertines of the most hypocritical kind. Reading Mr Hoffman's frequent diatribes directed at the post-Renaissance Catholic Church one could be forgiven for assuming usury was the only sin. It isn't.

Michael Hoffman said...

To Northsider:

Usury is not the only sin, but since it weaponizes the love of money which is the root of all evil, one can hardly marginalize it as anything less than central to the integrity of any institution that claims to be of Christ.

If you have read my book “Usury in Christendom” then you would know I criticize Puritans who followed the lead of the Church of Rome and weakened laws on usury — which became a major trend among Puritans after 1700, but generally not before.

Whatever Luther’s other serious failings, his stand against the titanic iniquities of usury and Talmudic Judaism represent a significant contribution to western civilization.

Northsider said...

I don't think it's a question of marginalising usury as a sin - rather of recognising that opposing this evil does not of itself make one's cause worthy (though it certainly helps - all other things being equal). Surely love of money is the root of all evil because money enables one to commit all the other sins at will? This is indeed why so many people love money. So any heresy that attacks or even undermines traditional Catholic teaching indirectly nourishes the usurious spirit - even if it ostensibly opposes loansharking. The proof of the pudding is in the eating. Sadly almost all Christian denominations, including Catholicism, now tacitly or explicitly condone usury, but the Catholic Church, for all its institutional weaknesses throughout the ages, still officially prohibits contraception, divorce, abortion, euthanasia, sodomy, and so on. Almost none of the Protestant denominations do. This is why the Catholic Church is relentlessly attacked by the agents of "Usura" in the corporate media, whereas Protestant denominations are largely left in peace - or even promoted. Modern Lutheranism is steeped in Freemasonry - I have a book at home with pictures of Scandinavian Lutheran bishops in full Masonic regalia. Ditto modern Anglicanism. Not Luther's fault you may say; maybe not directly, but his movement helped to unleash a nihilistic spirit in Europe, the long-term consequences of which were always likely to be unpredictable - to put it mildly. Also, he only started opposing Judaism quite late in the day. Throughout the centuries some Protestants have courageously opposed Masonry, but they've always been swimming against a powerful tide, and the very fractured nature of their opposition (division is inherent to Protestantism)renders it largely impotent. And by the way the Huguenots who conquered England in the 17th century were instrumental in setting up the Bank of England - a huge milestone on the road to usurious serfdom.

Michael Hoffman said...

To Northsider:

Surely you are aware that modern Catholicism is “steeped" in Freemasonry and the occult and has been since the Renaissance?

Do you imagine that the Church of Rome in our day offers meaningful resistance to contraception, divorce, abortion, euthanasia, sodomy? If so, you are living in a dream world. Neo-Catholics contracept at the same rate as Protestants, or higher. The current Archbishop of Chicago, Blasé Cupich, while Bishop of Spokane, forbad priests from protesting abortion in his diocese. He was promoted to Chicago as a result.

As for sodomy, where were you when the massive, institutionalized child molestation epidemic was revealed, with “Catholic” bishops as the main facilitators and enablers?

Traditional Lutheranism and Calvinism regarded contraception as a form of sodomy and vigorously fought abortion. Conservative Protestants are treated poorly in the media.

Northsider said...

Like many folk who rail against media bias you quite happily and unquestioningly accept media narratives when it suits your own prejudices. Protestant clerical paedophilia is extremely widespread, but is almost completely ignored by the corporate media. In fact Protestants themselves have often complained that the msm turn a complete blind eye to sexual scandals in their denominations. You frequently lament the way Judaic child molestation is covered up by the media, but it isn't just perverted rabbis who get a free pass as a by-product of the media's utterly mendacious and carefully coordinated effort to portray clerical child abuse as a uniquely Catholic crime.

You accuse Catholics of "scapegoating" Calvin, when in fact at every opportunity you attempt to scapegoat the Catholic Church for the failings of Protestantism. In your version of history, Protestant sell-outs to usury are invariably the result of Protestants blindly following the wicked path charted by the Renaissance Catholic Church. Funny that - the Puritans loathed and despised everything about the Catholic Church, but for some unaccountable reason they made an exception when it came to money - and chose to slavishly fall in behind Rome by condoning usury.

As for the rest of your reply: it's completely disingenuous. I never attempted to argue that the institutional Catholic Church always courageously fought the good fight against usury or any other evil that its teaching officially condemns. It's an institution run in the temporal sphere by weak, fallible human beings, who are, like their counterparts in all institutions, vulnerable to cowardice, imprudence, scandalous behaviour, blackmail, infiltration, bribery, threats, entrapment and so on. However the incontestable truth is that the Catholic Church is the only major western Christian denomination that still officially condemns contraception, abortion, sodomy and so on. What traditional Lutherans or Calvinists did in the past is completely irrelevant to this discussion. In any case, contrary to what you imply, historically many Puritan denominations were in the forefront of progressivist movements such as feminism, birth control, socialism, and multiculturalism. As for Freemasonry: again the facts are plain: the Catholic Church has always condemned Freemasonry and secret society membership generally - unlike most Protestant groups. When the former Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams (himself the son of a Freemason) publicly criticised Freemasonry, his co-religionists quickly forced him to retract. Wiliams' predecessor as Archbishop, George Carey, recently endorsed an extremely permissive British government euthanasia bill in the House of Lords. Carey's own predecessor, Robert Runcie, stated in a BBC interview that he knowingly ordained homosexuals as priests as far back as the 1970s. The Anglican Church of Ireland has enthusiastically endorsed "gay marriage" - whereas the Irish Catholic Church has spoken out against it. All of which goes to prove that however weak and fearful the temporal rulers of the Catholic Church may be in modern times, they haven't travelled anywhere near as far down the road of appeasement to the World as their Protestant counterparts.

Michael Hoffman said...

To Northsider

You wrote:

"In any case, contrary to what you imply, historically many Puritan denominations were in the forefront of progressivist movements such as feminism, birth control, socialism, and multiculturalism.”

Truly you have an elastic definition of Puritan. No authentic follower of Calvin in Europe or Jonathan Edwards in America would ever condone any of the evils you have listed. Any church that did would no longer be doctrinally Puritan.

You wrote:

"...the Catholic Church has always condemned Freemasonry and secret society membership generally…”

Yes, the Church of Rome since the Renaissance has had the wit to denounce the occult, which they helped to introduce to the West through their Neoplatonic-Hermetic conduit. Patently, for 500 years they haven’t practiced what they publicly proclaimed. And certainly no church guilty of such a thing is worthy of the name Catholic.

Finally, you continue to buy into the old right wing canard that “Puritans” (notice the sweeping generalization) loved money and practiced usury. Which Puritans? In what era? It’s ridiculous to allege this about 16th century Puritans or even most 17th century English Calvinists.

You have not read my book on usury but you expect to conduct a correspondence based on living off the fat of your own illusions. It won’t fly.

One reason for the Reformation was Protestant disgust at Church of Rome usury. You are ignorant of this fact and imagine that if you keep spouting shopworn disinformation it’s going to persuade someone who does not share your naiveté. I doubt it.

Northsider said...

What "won't fly" is your attempt to dodge the factual objections I raise by feebly repeating the refrain "Read My Book"!. You make very categorical statements about the Catholic Church, Luther and the Puritans in your articles here and elsewhere - e.g. in your response to Tony Blizzard on the Makow site a couple of years ago - so there's nothing stopping you from presenting the facts from your book to support these assertions. My facts are these: during the time that England emerged as the great usurious super-power Catholics were a completely marginalised minority, who suffered vicious state persecution. Not only that, but for most of this period - from the Elizabethan era to the 19th century - staunchly anti-Catholic Protestant Whigs dominated England. So the idea that Rome was the root cause of the rise of usury in England is utterly laughable. Furthermore from the 18th century onwards the Church also suffered persecution in many European countries - from Joseph II's Austria to Revolutionary France, to Scandinavia, to Bismarck's Germany - another great usurious super-power by the way. By the same token in the US Catholics were marginalised and discriminated against until at least the 20th century. Everyone knows the first Catholic President was elected in 1960. Even in de Valera's allegedly ultra-Catholic Ireland all the major usurious financial institutions and companies were owned and run by Protestants. So whoever was directly responsible for the rise of the tyranny of usury in Europe, it sure wasn't the Catholic Church. It may have done more to oppose usury, but that's a different argument. In fact, completely contrary to what you claim, probably the most significant way the Church aided the rise of usury was in buckling under to Masonic Protestant regimes in Britain and elsewhere.

You draw a distinction between Puritans in different ages - but are happy to link the undoubted corruption of today's Catholic Church to the Church 500 years ago. So where are the spiritual descendants of your noble Puritans - the ones who fought everything bad? I'm sure many of your readers would make a bee-line for their churches/chapels immediately, once informed of their whereabouts. In any case the liberalising tendencies of European Protestantism were plain for all to see even in the 16th century. Even that doughty Belfast Prod C.S. Lewis (no philo-Catholic he) admitted that, contrary to the popular myth, in so far as the Reformation was a battle between rigour and laxity, the rigour was on the Catholic side, the laxity on the Protestant. Furthermore, in an essay you yourself wrote an approving preface to, the author notes that the Puritans valued work and action over contemplation and prayer - an exact inversion of traditional Catholic thinking, and a sure-fire recipe for the rise of sterile materialism.

Michael Hoffman said...

To Northsider 11:48 a.m

[This rejoinder is in two parts. This is Part I].

You wrote: "...during the time that England emerged as the great usurious super-power Catholics were a completely marginalized minority, who suffered vicious state persecution. Not only that, but for most of this period - from the Elizabethan era to the 19th century - staunchly anti-Catholic Protestant Whigs dominated England. So the idea that Rome was the root cause of the rise of usury in England is utterly laughable."

What is "utterly laughable" is that you imagine that Whigs dominated 16th century England (the "Elizabethan era"). Whigs didn't exist in the Elizabethan era.

Usury was first legalized in England by King Henry VIII. It was outlawed under King Edward VI and reinstated under Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth I and all subsequent English monarchs.

As I document in my book, the nominalist school of theology of the Church of Rome was the pioneer, in the late 15th century, in usurious casuistry, which then spread to Protestant ranks; hence, whether or not Protestant kings and queens ruthlessly oppressed recusants in England (which they certainly did unfortunately), and permitted usury, it does not vitiate the fact of the origin of usury legalization having emanating from Romanist theologians and philosophers, among whom we number the papist Fugger banking dynasty's paid usury-advocate, Fr. Johannes Eck, who spread his shylock contagion in England circa 1525.

You wrote:

"Even in de Valera's allegedly ultra-Catholic Ireland all the major usurious financial institutions and companies were owned and run by Protestants. So whoever was directly responsible for the rise of the tyranny of usury in Europe, it sure wasn't the Catholic Church. It may have done more to oppose usury, but that's a different argument. In fact, completely contrary to what you claim, probably the most significant way the Church aided the rise of usury was in buckling under to Masonic Protestant regimes in Britain and elsewhere."

The notion that until recently, usurious banking was almost exclusively in Protestant hands is risible. Before any Protestant operated a single bank, the "Catholic" counting houses of Fugger in Germany and Medici and others in Italy ran extensive usury operations that were never abated. Protestants were exclusively seared with that brand in a process of historical myth to which you are seemingly much attached.

As I wrote in "Usury in Christendom," after 1830 and Pope Pius VIII's revolutionary declaration that usury was not be disturbed — with the revolutionary consequence that usury was no longer a mortal sin and usurers need not confess, repent or make restitution for this crime — the papacy began its relations with the banking House of Rothschild.

Continued in Part 2

Michael Hoffman said...

Part 2 (continued from Part 1 above)

You wrote: "You draw a distinction between Puritans in different ages - but are happy to link the undoubted corruption of today's Catholic Church to the Church 500 years ago. So where are the spiritual descendants of your noble Puritans - the ones who fought everything bad?"

You are forgetting that the true Catholic Church was founded 2,000 years ago. For 1500 years it upheld the Gospel and still does in so far as it exists in earthly precincts known only (or mainly) to God.

In the sweep of historical time, the 500 years that the papacy has been captured by occultism, Judaism and usury is but a fraction of the period in which it was faithful.

The English Calvinists in general opposed usury throughout the first 200 years of their existence (the 1500s and 1600s) and a substantial portion of the Puritan churches were a bulwark against it in Britain and America even in the 1700s.

It's silly to claim that I have said that the Puritans "fought everything that (was) bad." They certainly fought usury, contraception, sodomy, abortion and occultism in the main. One must qualify this statement because Puritan churches had no infallible pope over them and differed sometimes markedly in their practice and interpretation of the Scriptures.

When Calvin followed Eck and Romanist nominalism in permitting a 5% rate of interest on loans, he was widely resisted by numerous Puritan leaders such as John Cotten, again as documented in my book.

It's a pity that you need this writer to direct you to active, conservative Puritan churches today that are a bulwark against sodomy, abortion, feminism etc. when that intelligence is readily available online. By the way, their scholarly industry and respect for their intellectual heritage is something to behold. Whereas adherents of the Church of Rome have little or no interest in their own intellectual patrimony (which is one reason why more than 90% of the writings of eminent theologians like St. Robert Bellarmine remain untranslated from the Latin), groups like the Banner of Truth Trust have been engaged for decades in massive publishing of classic Puritan texts translated from Latin, French, Dutch (and other languages) into English.

Puritan Reformed Seminary flourishes in Grand Rapids, Michigan (USA), and many dozens of conservative Presbyterian churches in America have broken away from the degenerate mainstream Presbyterian denomination in ways somewhat similar to Catholic Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre's break from Newchurch.

Northside left an additional comment at 12:09 pm which I will excerpt and then attempt answer very briefly. Northside wrote:

“... I'd be interested to see you cite sources for your claim that some Catholic Traditionalists regard the Latin Mass as having magical powers….I've never once seen or heard any Catholic Trad say anything remotely resembling this. ... Perhaps by 'magical powers' you really mean 'miraculous powers'? If so you're correct. Traditional Catholics do believe in the miraculous powers of the old Mass - just as orthodox Catholics generally, believe in the miraculous powers of the rosary, devotion to the saints and so on. If you disapprove of all of this papist "superstition", then maybe the best place for you really is one of the Puritan sects, modern or "traditional".

You do yourself a disservice by your tendency toward hyperbole in extrapolating from my position. I have no qualms whatsoever about the old Mass and the transubstantiation that is at the heart of it. Nonetheless, true Catholics should be vigilant concerning the long occult tradition of fixation on the old Latin Mass by members of the Theosophical society in Britain and by contemporary “Catholic” monarchist-Hermeticists in the U.S.

Thank you for taking a sustained interest in my views. I pray for your enlightenment and ask for prayer on my own behalf.

Northsider said...

Thank you for kindly replying, and thank you for your prayers (I'm certain I need enlightenment - whether I need it on this issue, I'll leave others to judge). I'll certainly pray for you too.

I haven't got time now to answer all of your points, but to begin at the beginning: I never said the Whigs dominated the Elizabethan era. I said that "for MOST OF The PERIOD from the Elizabethan era to the 19th century, staunchly Protestant anti-Catholic Whigs dominated England. Which is true.

You appear to assume that anyone who disagrees with your analysis of Catholic and Protestant contributions to usury is either a rabid knee-jerk papist or a knee-jerk right-winger, unwilling to give up his prejudices against the much maligned Puritans. This is not the case. As I've made clear I'm more than happy to accept pre-Vatican II Catholic culpability where I'm shown hard evidence that it exists -and I certainly have no prejudice against you or your work. For instance I greatly admired your response to Michael Matt's attack on Bishop Williamson. However as I see it, you have presented no compelling evidence to support your assertion that Protestants resisted usury, but were led astray by Rome (an inherently unlikely notion - as I've noted already noted - given the hostility during this era between Catholics and Protestants, and give the fact that in countries like England the Protestants held the whip hand).

Degree is the crucial issue here. The usury and capitalist exploitation that took root in the British Empire, and later in the US, in the centuries after the Reformation was on an unprecedented scale that utterly dwarfed anything that occurred during the Italian Renaissance. Moreover during this era the Protestant British made energetic and mostly very successful efforts to export their capitalist Masonic revolution throughout Europe and elsewhere. Also, as I've previously pointed out, the Calvinist Huguenots were at the heart of this revolution in the 1600s - contrary to your claim that Puritans resisted usury for the first 200 years of their existence.

As I see it, the central problem here is that you hold Protestants and Catholics to completely different standards of credibility. Thus in your version of history, when a pope condemns usury he's obviously just doing it for devious strategic reasons, but when a Protestant argues for a just price he's obviously completely sincere. This in spite of the hard evidence of the massive involvement of Protestant groups in usury - almost from their beginnings. Look at what Protestants did, not at what they said - or what some of them said. Even modern bankers say they support a just price!

By the same token, when Calvin himself - the very founder of Calvinism (the clue is in the name)- endorses usury, and some of his followers oppose this endorsement, you take the anti-usury followers to represent the mainstream of Calvinist thought. This is a novel new twist on Marx's famous line: "I am not a Marxist". Maybe Calvin is recorded somewhere as having said "I am not a Calvinist". Either way I think you're guilty of the very "confirmation bias" you attribute to critics of Puritanism.

One final thing - not only did, Luther, the man widely regarded ad the founder of Protestantism, condone sinning, he also condoned alchemy. So occultism had a foothold in Protestantism from the very beginning.

Thanks again for replying and keep up the good work.

Michael Hoffman said...

Not meaning any disrespect, but you are only regurgitating your confirmation bias and it's about as interesting as watching paint dry.

You can parrot to your heart's content Right wing, Church of Rome propaganda about Protestant usury, but you are pertinaciously overlooking the fact that it is but a symptom of a Romanist root.

It is not merely a case of Italian usury through the Medici. Church of Rome usury controlled the entire "Holy Roman Empire." It infected the regime of Charles V and Phillip II in Spain at the height of that dynasty's western hemisphere empire.

Comic book "Catholic" history takes no account of this vast usurious banking conspiracy coming from Rome, so you ignore it and parrot the official Renaissance and post-Renaissance papist line.

Comic book "Catholic" history takes no notice of Johannes Eck's influence over Henry VIII and St Thomas More, which led Henry to be the first English king to legalize shylock banking, so you ignore this revolutionary history and parrot the papist line.

There is no disabusing you of your confirmation bias.

I have no desire to debate a parrot.

You can read my book.

You can expand your study beyond Vatican propaganda about the Bank of England and the Dutch.

You can learn what "misdirection" denotes.

Failing that, please don't importune me with further parroting. I have heard it before from other true believers. It is excruciatingly monotonous.