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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/8872/a-fake-banking-history-of-the-united-states/

A Fake Banking History of the United States

October 30, 2008 by

John Steele Gordon’s “short history” of banking is completely filled with falsehoods. Throughout his article, he blames Jefferson’s opposition to central banking for economic problems that were in fact created by Hamilton’s Bank of the United States. The system of financial regulatory dictatorship that Gordon praises, and which is about to be forced down the throats of the American public, has been tried before in other countries, and always with terrible results. FULL ARTICLE


al medina October 30, 2008 at 10:00 am

It is so simple yet few dare to pen simply. When the control of the issuance of currency was forfeited by the United States government to the international banking cartel, the government of the United States became slaves…even if they wanted to serve the people, they could not. If you were relying on me for your earnings, you would be my slave. Why not write an article that truly addresses this theme?

al medina October 30, 2008 at 10:01 am

It is so simple yet few dare to pen simply. When the control of the issuance of currency was forfeited by the United States government to the international banking cartel, the government of the United States became slaves…even if they wanted to serve the people, they could not. If you were relying on me for your earnings, you would be my slave. Why not write an article that truly addresses this theme?

Mary Diane Dolan October 30, 2008 at 10:09 am

Superb article! Hamilton and his like bear in their subconscious minds conviction that wherever regulation and force of law are imposed, improvements must follow. –As they usually do when an adult enters a roomful of rowdy children. The only exception, according to this “thought”, would occur if the adult were a villain.

This primitive, unexplored, archtypal assumption–this ineradicable impression–would not exist, were it not for the fact that all human beings began as children. If all human beings began their lives as adults (as they do, in effect, in the fictional works of Ayn Rand), it would be perfectly clear that dividing the ADULT human race between the category, “adult-adult” (government or regulator) and “child-adult” (the less-wise citizen or subject) is absurd and impossible

Human beings ALL begin their lives in a state of dependency upon others than whom they are less wise. There is no more absolute and universal truth than that. Most adults never recognize that they have become adults, much less what the implications of adulthood might be, so that they easily defer to the likes of Hamilton.

Xeno77777, ST. Petersburg, FL, USA. October 30, 2008 at 10:37 am

Alexander Hamilton;s bank was the fore runner of the David Rockefeller controlled Greedy Chase Manhattan, now J.P.Morgan Chase. Hamilton spread
spread rumors that Democratic Party Co-Founder, Aaron Burr was a homosexual, forcing Burr to challange Hamilton to a dual, giving Hamilton the right to supply the weapons, a pair off trick dueling pistols, supplied to Hamilton by his father-in-law, a colonel it the British Army. One pushed the trigger forward to set the single set trigger to a veru light pull. But instead of helping Hamilton in his dual with Burr, his pistol went off prematurely, enabling Burr to take his time and land a sure shot in Hamilton’s Torso, leading to his death from Septimia, Thus Hamilton was an engineer of murder, whose engineering mistake resulted in the engineer being hoisted by his own Petard (crane.) This was in a article in the Smithsonian Magizine just befrore the Bi-Sentinial Celebration. Hamilton’s Original Set of Dueling Pistols
was owned by the then Chase Manhattan Bank, Now J.P. Morgan Chase. Attempted Murderers, like Hamilton, cannot think very straight, on economics, nor any thing else. According to “The Wall Street Jungle” author Richard Ney, the New York Branch Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank, sets US Interest Rates; the New York Branch consists to two very small banks, one in upstate New York, the other in New Jersey. The Third Bank is the Titanic, David Rockefeller controlled J.P. Morgan Chase, which over whelms the two very tiny banks and allows David Rockefeller to set U.S. Interest rates. David set them too low for too long’; then he jumpted them up way too high. David’s Motto is “Suck in as many as possible with very cheap money; then Suck them Dry. It is called the Count Dracula Strategy of Central Banking. Why does David do this? Because of Evil Genes; he cannot help himself.. See Professor of Management Engineering, Barbra Oakley’s New Book, “Evil Genes,” Available on Amazon.com. France is the best ran Nation is Europe for two reasons: The Reign of Justice, during the revolution following 1789 which eliminated so many bad genes of the guilty, and Frances Universal Government Payee health care system. France is the only NATO Nation, whose native Population has expanded to keeps its percentage of the Nations population and also the only NATO Nation adapting well to Globalization, and Growing.
On Yahoos list of High Paying Jobs that do not require expensive education.
This is an excellent article for people with youth, talent, and interest or preference enough,to take advantage of its advice. Most of the jobs mentioned are recession-depression proof. Government jobs are preferable because crooked, reckless private employers try to cheat people out of their retirement, health, and anything else not read hot, or welded down. There is no honor amongst thieves and many other private employers. An Citizen, of Crescent City FL, had his brother, sister and mother living in Jacksonville, Florida, in a modest home; his sister worked for a small bank, just before she was ready to retire, the owners fired her, to avoid paying her retirement. Employers must be forbidden from retirement promises; and must pay enough money for workers own, self-controlled retirement funds, and the US must have Universal Medicaid/Medicare. Due to Government payee health care system, France is the only Nation growing jobs and reducing income inequality with growing globalization, and the only nation whose native population is keeping its percentage of the national population. The American Abortions represent Economically Forced Abortions; the US Supreme Court, its members of the Warran Commission, the 9/11 Comission, and in giving the election to George W. Bush, when clearly Al Gore won, except for the Cheating of Jeb Bush, Katherine Harris, and the deputy sheriffs of Jacksonville FL who manned roadblocks in poor and minority neighborhoods, blocking voters from the Polls; indicates The US Supreme Court is the most crooked of all U.S.Institutions, and Its Crookedness Indicates it is time for the States to Consider Planning a Call for a New Constitutional Convention. While Roe vs. Wade, is correct in so far as it goes; The U.S. Supreme Court, by failing to mandate the end of the Rockefeller-Dewey System of Mandatory Mis-Education, failure to mandate Universal Medicaid/Medicare, failure to mandate the end of economically forcing abortions, failure to mandate a True Social Security Trust Fund, instead of empty promises, has gravely weakened American National Security, nearly to or beyond, The Point Of No Return. American Numbers are 150 million or more too few; its enemies 150 million or more too great, its most powerful national figures, side with and keep the US from carrying the War to its chief war time opponents, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Pakistan, as the US did against the Moro’s in the Philippines, going in and lining up all Males of Military Age, or an age and or size enough, to Bully Their Moters, in front of a Long Trench, Machine Guning and Burying Them in the Trench. People are afraid to oppose in any way, David Rockefeller and the US Western Oil Industry and the World Oil Producers, such as Saudi Arabia, Russia, Iran, and Mexico, ect. This is due to their success in the Character Assassination of President Richard Nixon, and the Physical Assassinations of the 1960′s,, led by the top men of the FBI and the CIA, like Mark Felt and George Herbert Walker Bush. Both The Character Assassination Conspiracys and The Physical Assassination Conspiracies, Must Somehow Be Dealt With Very Effectively; so No Person Must
Fear Doing His Patriotic Duties, or America is Dead. Nixon was the last True Liberal to win or run for the White House. Now-a-Days there are Several Infallible ways to spot a Neo-Platonist of the contemporary types: Emmanuel Kant PhD./Schollar Followers/ Medieval-Feudal/ Communist/ Fascist/ Nazi/ Baalams: Gratuitous Attacks on Moses such as, General Rejection of Deuteronomy 6: 4-5, General Agreement with the Graf-Wellhousen Thesis (96% of todays seminaries) and/or Syncratism with Neo-Platonism-an Abstraction of the Baal Religion; Gratuitous Attacks on Aristotle whose Influence created the Seputagint in Common Greek translation, at about the last time some few scholars could still read and speak Ancient Hebrew, made the Rabbis and Jesus Possible; Gratuitious Attacks on Jesus rather than Thomas Jefferson’s approach; Gratuitous Attacks on The Last Great Liberal President, Richard Nixon; Gratuitous Sucking Up To: David Rockefeller/ Anglo-American International + Western US + Foreign Oil Industries/Fascist Federal Reserve System + Big Bank Bail Outs + Rockefeller-Dewey System of Ant-Mathematical + Anti-Science + Anti- Engineering Mis-Education, based on Bulying and Cultural Deprivation (similar to Psychological Deprivation: a known method of Torture,) Gratuitous Attacks on The Discoveror of the Taxol Synthesis, Professor Horton of F.S.U. Taxol is the Number One Cancer Chemotherapy Drug Today; it may be preferable to skip surgery and go directly to Taxol; unless one gets an irrational thrill out of being operated upon; some folks have strange, irrational, fearfull, self destructive tastes for surgery; Gratuitious Attacks on CPAP or other Treatments for Sleep Apnea, or on the very existance of the disorder; Gratuitous Attacks on Science; Gratuitous Attacks on the Mann Diesel and the Texaco Gasoline Controlled Combustion Cycles for new engines, which by more efficient Knock/Pre-[Pre-Ignition Proof, Controlled Combustion Cycles, can use lightly refined fuel such as Kerosene and double the gallons of useable fuel per barrel of Oil; cutting oil imports in half. USABLE GALLONS OF FUEL PER BARREL OF OIL WILL BE DOUBLED; BARRELS OF OIL WILL BE CUT IN HALF. Within less than 20 years, the gigantic, wasteful, world polluteing, global warming causing, Exxon like oil refineries will be dismantled for ever.

fundamentalist October 30, 2008 at 11:04 am

The debate began with John Law and Richard Cantillon. Hamilton took Law’s side. This debate will be with us forever because the Law/Hamilton side refuses to learn any economics but are great salesmen. The Cantillon/Jefferson side refuses to learn salesmanship.

Somehow, the Law/Hamilton side are able to make gods out of there heroes. They did the same with Keynes who, as I understand, knew very little economics, but was a good salesman and sided with Law/Hamilton. All Keynes did was make Law respectable.

Lola (UK) October 30, 2008 at 11:53 am

There is a certain delicious irony in the name John Steele Gordon. As our dear leader Gordon Brown is of roughly the same opinions as your J S Gordon. Plus it was G Brown’s policies and seemingly deliberate debauch with our national currency system that has given the UK much the same problems as the US. In particular G Bown’s regulatory ‘reforms’ pretty well guranteed that this would happen.

Joshua Park October 30, 2008 at 12:04 pm

fundamentalist wrote, “The Cantillon/Jefferson side refuses to learn salesmanship. … Somehow, the Law/Hamilton side are able to make gods out of there [sic] heroes.”

I think this is because the kind of person that goes and studies, tests, and tries to look at economics from all sides is a very different animal than the salesman or marketeer. To effectively sell and market a product, a person has to be slightly disingenuous. To sell, you see, you have to reduce your message to the lowest common denominator so that it reaches the broadest number of people. I say that this is a lack of sincerity, since some of the very important points of your product (or idea) would need to be watered down.

The kind of person that is willing to water down their message (even to the point of being inaccurate) for the sake of broad evangelism is not the kind of person that slogs through tomes, historical research, and articles of current events. I get the feeling that the world (sadly) has grown accustomed to lazy salesmen. They are used to people who don’t understand the product they peddle, but they sound good doing it.

My view on salesmanship, however, is not completely bleak. There are some great examples of effective marketing of products–without sacrificing the message. The trouble is that it takes a long, continued effort and a big budget. Case-in-point: Apple. Their product is attractive, it works, and it is in many (but not all) ways intuitive. Its marketing backs this up. It does not use one message in and of itself, but spreads out the message over many many commercials. It is consistent in that it owns the idea of “simplicity”. And it backs all of this up with big budgets and constant visibility.

Now, I would love to see the same kind of approach applied to Austrian economics in particular and libertarianism in general. Maybe I’m too young, but has anyone seen an effective campaign of this sort in the theater of ideas? Such “salesmanship” of the Jeffersonian tradition (Ugh. I hate to say that. As correct as that man may have been regarding central banking, I cannot ally myself with him because of his egregious actions against the Cherokee Nation. It makes me want to not carry $20s in my pocket–but $10s are no better. But I digress.) would require several things:

1. A unifying thought that sums up our ideas.
2. Breaking up our message into digestible parts that all tie into that unifying thought.
3. Clever packaging of those parts.
4. Broad dissemination of those parts.

Again, relying too much on Apple, They take step 1 and come up with “Simplicity”. They take step two and find things like security, file compatibility, OS stability, pre-installed software, Widgets, etc. They take step 3 and make the wonderful commercials that each address only one of the points derived from step 2, all in a visible message that highlights the choice between two options (PC vs. Mac) in a manner that screams “Simplicity!” Lastly, they take a huge bag of money with step 4 and spread the message.

So! Can the Mises Institute do that? Mr. Tucker, Mr. Woods? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

eli cryderman October 30, 2008 at 12:43 pm

All we’re missing is the huge bag of money! maybe if we all pool our good bullion…

Ricardo October 30, 2008 at 12:59 pm

we could send this article to

YerMawm October 30, 2008 at 6:11 pm

Yet another MSM article full of half-truths, and dis-information. Thus verifying Josh Park’s response.

Form over function in action

Mary October 30, 2008 at 6:32 pm


Don’t Microsoft/Intel products still have a grossly larger share of the market than Apple?

That used to be because of two factors: (1) compatibility with everyone else; (2) cost. These days I don’t think compatibility is much of an issue anymore, but win-tel products are still noticeably less expensive. Linux/Intel products have also carved out a nice niche for themselves, and not made it any easier for Apple to gain market share.

It seems that one could say Austrian economics and libertarianism have already achieved a market position similar to Apple: a superior product but smaller market share (though I can’t claim to personally know that Apple is superior).

Joshua Park October 30, 2008 at 7:16 pm


True, Microsoft does have a larger share than Apple. My point was not to make an analogy between Apple and Austrio-libertarianism, but your points are well-taken. In fact, we could even take the idea a step further in terms of studying strategy for market share.

Microsoft, on one hand, is highly ingrained in the business enterprise systems. Many things run MS software, or require it. People at home tend to buy PCs because they are cheaper, and because they are familiar with them at work. They have them at work because entrenched businesses would find it very expensive to switch over. In the same way, most people accept the government as par for the course because that’s what they are familiar with. Also, systems like fractional-reserve banking and the Fed have intertwined with regular business activities–so much so that many companies are run on a system of borrow-and-operate. Although there may be a better product out there, the change would be drastic, unfamiliar, and worrisome to most business persons.

Apple, on the other hand, takes the approach that many authoritarians have made in decades past: they try to infiltrate the schools. Apple is very involved with getting their computers in schools so that children are used to it and will therefore be more likely to go with the same later in life. We can see that going on in our public schools now with some very statist ideas being promulgated–from the universities on down to the lower grades.

As to the question of Apple being a better product.. I think it is a trade-off. Sure, the object itself is probably better for some things (graphic design, photography, ease-of-use).. but it comes at a price. It’s like, you know, which is better: an Aston Martin or a Chevy? Again, the analogies are falling apart all around me! Libertarianism is, in my opinion, the best product for the lowest price. (With our current system, we’re getting a Datsun at Ferrari prices.)

But, yes, I’d agree that Austian economics and libertarianism are a better product with a lower market share. Again, I think the issues are entrenchment of the old system and the perceived cost of the new one. Case-in-point is this election we in the US are going through right now. Conservatives everywhere would love to vote libertarian, but the perceived cost is “that socialist would get in!” For the more left-leaning libertarians, the cost might be “that imperialist might get in!” Fear is a hard shackle to break.

Mary October 30, 2008 at 10:24 pm

Joshua, I agree with what you say about entrenchment, both for win-tel computer systems and for current political/economic systems such as fractional reserve banking. As I was reading your last comments, I recalled documentaries that say it was the “killer app” (a spreadsheet program) that originally popularized the PC, and of course the web browser is the killer app that has made the internet what it is today (who else here was on the net in the days of usenet newsgroups?). Maybe what Austrian economics and libertarianism needs to find is its killer app.

parsimonia October 30, 2008 at 11:08 pm

The only feature of the Apple that matters is that it doesn’t crash. I have yet to lose anything stored in an Apple product. My loses on my old PC are, however, too numerous to count.

Dick Fox October 31, 2008 at 3:11 pm

If you want to read how two people can take opposing positions and both be wrong then read John Steele Gordon’s “Hamilton’s Blessing” and Thomas DiLorenzo’s “Hamilton’s Curse.” Better yet just skip them both.

John Steele Gordon cannot tell the difference from an independent bank large enough to be the lender of last resort with a Federal Reserve System that engages in the worst Keynesian Social Engineering the world has ever experienced.

But then Thomas DiLorenzo’s rebuttal is so ignorant of what Alexander Hamilton believed that it is like a physician bleeding a person dying of a gunshot wound. Anyone who would write, “Compared to Jefferson, Hamilton was an economic ignoramus” is ignorant of what Hamilton has written and even more ignorant that Jefferson’s economics was so bad that he took small fortune and turned it into poverty.

Hamilton was not perfect, but neither was he evil. If it had not been for Alexander Hamilton the United States would not exist today. He returned the US to a gold standard, paid the war debts of all the states, and gave the US one of the highest bond ratings in Europe of any country in the world.

Decide for yourself rather than following blindly either Gordon or DiLorenzo. Here is Jefferson’s argument as presented to President Washington http://courses.pasleybrothers.com/texts/Jefferson_on_BUS.htm and here is the argument of Hamilton as presented to President Washington http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/bank-ah.asp

The actual question debated is whether the constitution empowers the government the right to do what ever is necessary to fulfill its enumerated responsibilities. This became known as the “implied powers” doctrine. Ask yourself the question Hamilton implies. Can a government exist if it has not power to enforce its enumerated responsibilities?

Joshua Park November 1, 2008 at 11:42 am

First off, I’d like to make a correction to my first post. I wrongly stated that Jefferson acted horribly against the Cherokee Nation. I don’t know how he treated the Cherokee, but my brain must have been muddled at the time–I confused him with Andrew Jackson! Looking back, I really can’t see why I might have done this, except that Jackson fought against the Second Bank of the US. My apologies to everyone.

Mary: I wonder what a “killer app” might be in the world of Ideas. Apple hasn’t had a killer app, per se, but we might consider the iPod to be a “killer” in its own market with a roughly 70% share of the pie. As ideas, though, I don’t know what might be packaged together out from an overarching philosophy–a package that could be accepted and take over the marketplace. Hmm.

Dick Fox: Thanks for the links. Looking at Hamilton’s argument, there is a pretty foundational argument that I took exception to. We writes:
“If it would be necessary to bring proof to a proposition so clear, as that which affirms that the powers of the federal government, as to its objects, were sovereign, there is a clause of its Constitution which would be decisive. It is that which declares that the Constitution, and the laws of the United States made in pursuance of it, and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under their authority, shall be the serene law of the land. The power which can create the supreme law of the land in any case, is doubtless sovereign as to such case.”

Look at that last sentence. He claims that the federal government is sovereign over the various States because it has the power to create laws that have supremacy. I’m no historian, but didn’t the people of the States create that power (the Constitution)? If his argument is that whatever power that creates sovereign law is sovereign itself, then he’d have to argue that the people themselves are sovereign.

The federal government of the United States did not create itself. It was the ratification by the people of the various States that created it. In its creation, the people did not fashion out a many-headed King. Instead, they created a Steward of the States, limited with clearly defined powers.

Hamilton seems to rely on this idea of the government being sovereign (as opposed to just the law being sovereign) to argue for the constitutionality of the creation of corporations like central banks. There IS a distinction here. If, as Hamilton argues, the government were sovereign then they could do whatever they wanted regardless of whatever laws were previously in place. On the other hand, if the law were sovereign then all the laws that followed would have to line up with the ones previously in place.

Hamilton seems to think that if some power is “implied” through creation of the federal government, then the government should be able to delegate, incorporate, or nationalize at will. But, as Jefferson argues: “To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specially drawn around the powers of Congress is to take possession of a boundless field of power, no longer susceptible of any definition.” Who is to say what is “implied” and what isn’t? That’s the danger of Hamilton’s argument, in my opinion.

Dick Fox November 2, 2008 at 10:18 am


Outstanding post!! Well reasoned and logical.

My comment is that I believe you take Hamilton somewhat out of context. He is responding to the idea that there must be sufficient power in the central government to perform its responsibilities.

To understand this a little better here is what he wrote to James Duane in 1780 in his criticism of the Articles of Confederation:

“There is a wide difference between our situation and that of an empire under one simple form of government, distributed into counties provinces or districts, which have no legislatures but merely magistratical bodies to execute the laws of a common sovereign. Here the danger is that the soverign will have too much power to oppress the parts of which it is composed. In our case, that of an empire composed of confederated states each with a government completely organised within itself, having all means to draw its subjects to a close dependence on itself – the danger is directly the reverse. It is that the common sovereign will not have power sufficient to unite the different members together, and direct the common forces to the interest and happiness of the whole.”

In his argument as stated by you above he states, “If it would be necessary to bring proof to a proposition so clear, as that which affirms that the powers of the federal government, as to its objects, were sovereign…” Note the phrase I placed in bold. Hamilton recognizes that the federal government is only sovereign “as to its objects,” its responsibilities. Then he goes on to offer as his proof that the constitution makes federal treaties “sovereign” over the states. He therefor concludes that engaging in activities of the federal government only “as to its objects” must also be sovereign over the states. Hamilton does not at all state that all federal laws are sovereign over the states but only those laws that support its constitutional responsibilities.

To take Jefferson’s statement to its logical conclusion the federal government can have no power to enforce any of its responsibilities. In other words we must return to the Articles of Confederation where the federal government can suggest but the states have the right to ignore the suggestions be it taxes or defense of the now united states.

In his letter to Duane, Hamilton uses the example of the “Grecian republics” to show that they “for want of a union fell a prey to their neighbours.”

Robert Nathan November 3, 2008 at 6:58 am

I find it incredibly ironic that those who support Hamilton’s philosophy criticize Jefferson as a slave owner; while Hamilton, in turn, has made slaves of us all by giving birth to central banking.

Dick Fox November 3, 2008 at 7:26 am


You have a shallow view that parrots what others have said without going to the source. Hamilton did not give birth to the central bank. The UK had a central bank that was pretty successful in the 1800s.

It is counter productive to have a knee jerk reaction to the term central bank. There are all kinds of ways central banks operate. Look deeper.

magnus November 3, 2008 at 11:11 am

there must be sufficient power in the central government to perform its responsibilities

“Must”? How desperate! How imperative! How unassailable!

This is an excellent argument to make to convince people to amend the Constitution to provide for these new powers. But federalists (i.e., nationalists) don’t want to bother with that process.

The main problem with “implied powers” is not the fact that the federal government gets new powers (although that is usually a problem, too). It’s that the federal government gets to be the one to decide, on its own, that it ALREADY HAS whatever additional powers it decides that it needs.

The “implied powers” doctrine is simply a self-aggrandizing method of getting around that pesky and cumbersome problem of having to get the States to ratify amendments. Voters can be so obstinate. Better to just eliminate the part where they get a modicum of control over the size and scope of the power of the government, right?

Hercules Mulligan December 24, 2008 at 4:16 pm

Dick Fox’s conversation with Joshua Park is fantastic. It nails down the truth precisely.

Way to go!

Brian Macker December 24, 2008 at 5:28 pm


Well some of it’s good, but this comment was ridiculous:
“ignorant that Jefferson’s economics was so bad that he took small fortune and turned it into poverty.”

Is every economist rich? Is that how we measure how good an economist is?

Better yet, are you rich Dick Fox?

If I recall, Jefferson was a tinkerer and into grandiose stuff. Building cool curved brick walls only one brick wide merely to show a principle is expensive.

Of course, I’m not a historian amateur or otherwise. So maybe he was a poor economist also. He did have the right idea about central banks if he was against them.

If I inherited lots of money then I’d run it into the ground also. Imagine how much fun it is to spend a billion instead of all the hard work in earning it. First thing I’d waste money on is that Bussard fusion reactor. Sounds cool, though not likely to work.

Brian Macker December 24, 2008 at 5:33 pm

“The UK had a central bank that was pretty successful in the 1800s.”

Define successful in this context.

Our central bank was quite “successful” in certain peoples opinions over the past two decades, until it wasn’t. Well, perhaps I’m being to generous with them. They probably still think it’s acting successfully.

Steve Allen August 8, 2009 at 12:14 pm

A most excellent piece. I came to the same conclusions. A friend gave me a copy of ‘An Empire of Wealth’. He asked my thoughts. Searching for the right answer led me to this (very well written) article. No stranger myself to the Mises Institute (having purchased 4 books and 2 T-shirts) so it was nice that they could sum up so perfectly (so much better than I) the overwhelming flaws in Gordon’s book.

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