Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne railed against Wall Street and the Federal Reserve on Wednesday, saying that because of them, America is approaching the place where “republics go to die.”
“The history of this country can be told as a history of two competing power centers: Wall Street and Washington,” Byrne said in an interview with Glenn Beck. “What’s happened in recent decades is, Wall Street has gotten Washington under its thumb. That’s where republics go to die. We’re becoming an oligarchy.”
Byrne made headlines earlier this year after announcing that Overstock would be the first major online retailer to start accepting Bitcoin, which he believes will help shelter the economy from another recession.
“There’s a story you need to know from the 1930s,” Byrne told Beck. “Roosevelt, who did some bad things but also some good things, said the single hardest reform that he tried to get through America was changing Wall Street. There was this enormous push back, and they ended up with a compromise, and the compromise was called the Securities and Exchange Commission, the SEC.”
Byrne said the SEC needs to be “unplugged and moved into the Department of Justice,” since “those are the only guys who can issue orange jumpsuits, and the only thing that scares Wall Street are orange jumpsuits.”
Byrne said two of his heroes are Milton Friedman and Thomas Sowell, and both have spoken about how one of the most important changes America can make is eliminating the Federal Reserve.
“The Federal Reserve is like a tumor in America,” Byrne said. “You cut it out. You don’t replace it with anything.”
Byrne said Americans can “remonstrate with our leaders, with the politicians and such” over the Federal Reserve, but Bitcoin enables one to simply “check out of the whole Federal Reserve system.”
You can watch the complete interview, which also includes a discussion of “the soft racism of low expectations,” below:
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