We assured Peter that Barney Frank had a long record of supporting Ron Paul’s efforts to impose greater transparency upon the actions of the Fed.

‘In 2007 Barney Frank had in fact given an affectionate interview on the subject of Ron Paul’s quixotic campaign for the presidency to the New York Times magazine in which he said of his relationship with his colleague from Texas:

"We first bonded because we were both conspicuous non-worshipers at the Temple of the Fed and of the High Priest Greenspan.”

But Peter was not satisfied; he was certain conspiracy must be afoot. He began talking about JP Morgan and the Council on Foreign Relations, Skull & Bones and the various other front organizations in addition to the Fed through which some believe a secretive cabal of elites known as the Illuminati govern world affairs. (The Masons, Peter said, may also be involved.)

The conversation echoed another we’d had back in November, when while writing a story about, of all people, Barney Frank, we looked up an old Reagan-era rival of Frank’s by the name of Bill Dannemeyer.

As an Orange County Republican serving in the eighties Dannemeyer had made a name for himself  reading graphic depictions of gay sex from the floor of the House, claiming people with AIDS emitted "spores that cause birth defects" and leading an infuriated crusade to oust Barney Frank over a relationship he’d carried on with a male prostitute.

But by the time we got around to talking to Dannemeyer he had mellowed considerably. He no longer saw Frank as the promulgator of some sort of insidious "gay agenda."

All he asked of Frank as a public citizen was for him to use his chairmanship of the Financial Services Committee to pass a bill demanding a full congressional audit of the Federal Reserve. (Dannemeyer, too, had referenced the Illuminati and the Council on Foreign Relations, JP Morgan and the Rockefellers.)

It would take too much space to explain even the bit we do