The Carmen Segarra Recordings, Fear, and Liberty

Something that surfaced in September at This American Life, which people have overlooked without much discussion, is the secret recording of Carmen Segarra. Carmen Segarra was a bank examiner for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and had the role of oversight of Goldman Sachs. Segarra says she was fired after she found that Goldman did not have any adequate conflict of interest policy. During her time working for the Fed, she secretly recorded meetings between her and her supervisors as well as between the team of regulators and their conference call with Goldman Sachs, exposing the fact that very little regulation is actually being done, and exposing the culture of fear in banking in general. Segarra’s superior, Michael Silva, acted as if Goldman Sachs had the power, not the Federal Reserve oversight team, and he seemed afraid to anger them. This culture of fear is a leading reason for the collapse of this country. Fear of being fired, or fear of being demonized by the public and the media, is resulting in inaction by good people who witness evil or immorality taking place.

Without all of the fears that currently pervade the entire society, we would still have our liberty in a constitutional republic. This republic was not made for cowards, but for people willing to stand up to power and stand up for truth and justice. It should be easy to say the truth, to say that 2+2=4. But with fear, it becomes complicated and people are unwilling to say the truth because they are afraid of losing their careers, or their lives.

What is everyone afraid of? President Woodrow Wilson once said:

“Since I entered politics, I have chiefly had men’s views confided to me privately. Some of the biggest men in the United States, in the field of commerce and manufacture, are afraid of something. They know that there is a power somewhere so organized, so subtle, so watchful, so interlocked, so complete, so pervasive, that they had better not speak above their breath when they speak in condemnation of it.”

But what is he talking about? Why should we fear these people? I think that what we should fear most is the loss of liberty taking place currently. What benefits will we gain if we are all too scared to speak out against the denigration of our constitution and the erosion of our liberty? Will future generations look back on us and say, “good thing they were all so scared, I’m proud of our ancestors for being afraid and saying and doing nothing”?

Those who seek to restrict individual liberty are never about truth. This can be seen by many examples, but specifically in the leaked “Climategate emails”. In one email Michael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University, wrote, “as we all know, this isn’t about truth at all, its about plausibly deniable accusations”. Phil Jones, Director of the Climatic Research Unit (CRU), in another email, wrote “PS I’m getting hassled by a couple of people to release the CRU station temperature data. Don’t any of you three tell anybody that the UK has a Freedom of Information Act !” And in yet another email, Thomas J. Crowley, director of the Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment and Society, said “somehow I am not convinced that the ‘truth’ is always worth reaching if it is at the cost of damaged personal relationships….”

Conversely, as people involved in the liberty movement, we have to be focused on truth. On the ability to discuss reality, George Orwell in the novel 1984 wrote “freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.” And Patrick Henry said in his famous “give me liberty or give me death” speech:

“Mr. President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be of the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.”

Carmen Segarra is simply someone who is willing to say that 2+2=4; that Goldman Sachs does not have an adequate conflict of interest policy, and that there is no actual oversight of Goldman Sachs taking place. So add her to the ever-growing list of whistleblowers. They can be called heroes, or they can be seen as people who were simply not afraid, and willing to say the truth. If people can discuss reality openly, then it will only be a matter of time before there is a mass awakening and a return to the principles of liberty.

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