General form of the quote:“A financial element in the large centers has owned the government since the days of Andrew Jackson.” - Franklin Roosevelt This does appear to be a real quote. What it's lacking is context. What are the "large centers"? Who is this "financial element" Bankers? In what way do they own the government, and how has this changed over time? There may be very little to debunk here. But people who believe the Fed is part of some huge Elite conspiracy will point to this as evidence. So I think some context is important. Andrew Jackson was president from 1829 to 1837. He was strongly opposed to the Second Bank of the United States, a precursor to the modern Federal Reserve Bank. A longer version of the quote appears in wikiquote.org I'd been unable to find the full letter online, but snippet views of the book are available via google, which allowed me to piece together a full version of the letter Sprague is Oliver Sprague, an economist, and presidential advisor during the new deal. Tugwell is Rexford Tugwell, one of FDRs economic advisors. At the time he was Assistant Secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture. By "large centers", I suspect he means the large financial centers, specifically London. Does he mean "own the government" in the sense of national debt? So in the same way the Chinese could be said to fulfill that role today? The letter was written a few months after the London Economic Conference. One thing that comes to mind after just digging into this briefly is just how complicated global banking and economics are. It's a subject where the average person is hard pressed to ever gain much comprehension - and hence it's an ideal breeding ground for conspiracy theory. Of course it's also an ideal breeding ground because there is so much real conspiracy - or at the very least large levels of corruption - involved with money and politics at the moment.