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Josiah Stamp quotes[edit]

"President of the Bank of England and the second richest man in the British Empire". However, Stamp was never President of the Bank of England, though he was on the board of directors, nor does he appear to have ever been anywhere near the second richest man in the British Empire. No primary source for this is known. The earliest source is Silas W. Adams, The Legalized Crime of Banking (1958), who gives no earlier source, only saying "as said in an informal talk to 150 University of Texas history, economics and social science professors, in the 20's". (Stamp died in 1941.) The quote also seems to imply that Stamp made his fortune in banking, which is not true. It is inconsistent with everything Stamp said about banking on the record.

The above claims were posted to the page. The discussion/claims belong here on the talk page. Josiahs economic status is not an issue. Stamp has at least two quotes attributed to him that are consistent with the critical view he is currently known for. The quotes have been so hard to kill that they have even survived to this day. This _may_ be an indication of sorts. Neither view is documented conclusively settled as fact so please, do not attack me, try rather to investigate, document and verify.

Your comment is unclear. I did investigate and document and was unable to verify the quote. It is highly unlikely that it is a genuine quote for the reasons given above. I'm not sure what you mean by "Josiahs economic status". The quote has been handed down over the years with the description of Stamp attached: "President of the Bank of England and the second richest man in the British Empire". This comes from Adams' book. The biographical details are included because they show that what is stated in The Legalized Crime of Banking is wrong. What are the "two quotes attributed to him that are consistent with the critical view he is currently known for"? Are they reliable? If not, they have no bearing on whether this quote is genuine. The fact that quotes are repeated over decades is only an indication that quotes are repeated over decades. Many fake quotes are repeated over decades.
Since I try to keep the comments on the article page brief, I can make the logic more explicit here. This quote is untrustworthy because:
1. The earliest citation is from more than 15 years after Stamp died and about 30 years after it was supposedly uttered. Adams gives no indication how this information came to him or how it came to be written down in the first place. The quote has no reliable source.
2. Adams gives biographical information about Stamp that is wrong. This should erode the confidence in any information that Silas gives that is not properly sourced.
3. Stamp wrote articles and books and gave speeches that were written down and published in books. I have looked in these books and searched for what he said about banking. There is nothing in them that resembles this quote in any way. This quote is inconsistent with what Stamp said on the record.
4. In the book, this is included in the quote: "Take this power away from bankers, and all great fortunes like mine will disappear, and they ought to disappear, because this would then be a better and a happier world to live in." The straightforward reading of this is that Stamp made his money from banking. But that isn't true. He came from humble origins. He worked as a civil servant from the age of 16 until he was almost 39. Then he went into business as an executive with the chemical company Nobel Industries. Seven years later he became president of London Midland and Scottish Railway. So the quote itself contradicts known facts about Stamp.
Some brief statement of these facts should be on the main article page to indicate to the reader that this quote has no reliable source. To provide just the quote without context is a disservice.
KHirsch 08:16, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Suggestion about accounting widespread spurious quotes[edit]

There are various comments rambling on the internet (and some (pseudo)documentary films) that are based on "quotations" of notable people. One of such quotes is ascribed to T. Jefferson.

“I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.”
Thomas Jefferson to Albert Gallatin, 1802 (or the Debate Over The Recharter Of The Bank Bill 1809), Thomas Jefferson

Two analyzing articles about this: 1; 2 Maybe there should be added an additional section about about such misleading information (that does not just mention about lack of sources but states about the high probability of there falsity)? DaemonDice 12:58, 11 April 2011 (UTC)


  • If you were a poor Indian with no weapons, and a bunch of conquistadors came up to you and asked where the gold was, I don't think it would be a good idea to say, 'I swallowed it. So sue me.'
  • If you want time to pass quickly, just give a banker your note for ninety days.
  • I went to the bank and went over my savings. I found out I have all the money that I'll ever need. If I die tomorrow.
  • My girlfriend's father died of throat trouble ... They hung him. He used to work in a bank. But no matter how much the boss likes you, if you work in a bank you can't bring home samples.
  • One rule which woe betides the banker who fails to heed it ... Never lend any money to anybody unless they don't need it.
  • Anytime four New Yorkers get into a cab together without arguing, a bank robbery has just taken place.
  • I think that not relying too heavily on one bank and one bank manager is a good rule to learn.
  • The banks—hard to believe in a time when we're facing a banking crisis—that many of the banks created—are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place.