It drives me crazy when I read stuff by “economists” that is just plain wrong. Some of them are allegedly “MBAs” and “PhDs” but I think that their common sense is actually “DOA”. Unfortunately, millions in the public arena see their interviews and blogs and they seem to automatically swallow their commentaries… hook, line and sinker. Let’s address some of the nonsense that these pundits are expressing. Words: 870
So says Paul Mladjenovic (www.mladjenovic.blogspot.ca) in edited excerpts from an article* which Lorimer Wilson, editor of www.munKNEE.comhas further edited below for length and clarity – see Editor’s Note at the bottom of the page. This paragraph must be included in any article re-posting to avoid copyright infringement.
Mladjenovic goes on to say, in part:
Some conventional and well-known economists have expressed the idea that a gold standard is a bad idea and that the gold standard was a major (and possibly THE major) catalyst for the Great Depression. One well-known fellow surmises that an equivalent of the gold standard is the reason why today’s European financial crisis is going on. In due course, I am sure that they will blame the gold standard for global warming and probably the heartbreak of psoriasis…
The point that critics make is that the gold standard “removes financial flexibility” when a system-wide financial crisis unfolds. They don’t like a gold standard because it is viewed as a “rigid constraint”.
In a monetary system that is on the gold standard, the amount of currency you can produce at will is indeed greatly constrained since the amount of currency (dollars or euros or whatever) is limited to the amount of gold that is on reserve. This condition puts the breaks on the unlimited creation of a currency.
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The real problems behind today’s (and yesterday’s) financial crises and depressions have nothing to do with constraints such as a gold standard; the problems come from mismanagement of spending and debt… and governments that are too expansive in their size and scope.
Economists don’t blame governments for spending too much or creating too much debt or printing up too much of their currencies; they blame whatever may stop them from doing so (such as a gold standard). This is insane; it is like blaming the seat belt for a car crash.
Imagine for a moment if a financial planner took the same line of thinking with their client. How would that go?
“Well Mr. Smith I see that you are spending way beyond your means and you are taking on a lot of debt as a result. You are now hitting your credit limit! Well…the problem is obvious to me! Your spending and debt are not the problem…I blame the credit limit! The creditor is not letting you borrow your way out of your excessive spending and debt! Yup… I blame the credit limit.”
Could you imagine that? That is essentially what these “educated” commentators are telling the public. The public confuses “eloquence” with common sense. They figure these guys “must know what they are talking about” since they “sound pretty smart”. Ugh…
We must remember that the gold standard was present when America had the depression of 1920-21 and we got through it and then proceeded into the roaring twenties. What’s that you say? You never heard of the depression of 1920-21? That is because the government did very little to intervene and the economy righted itself very quickly.
How about the Great Depression? FDR effectively removed the constraints of the gold standard in 1933 – but the Great Depression continued – for over a decade! The Great Depression did not end until AFTER World War II ended (in 1945).
Look, we may not need a classical gold standard; but we need SOME type of standard. The essential point here is that our governments need some type of restraint… otherwise they will continue to spend and spend and create more and more debt.
Standards and restraints on endless money and debt creation do not cause financial catastrophes and depressions but it is the lack of this constraint (gold standard or a modified version of one) that opens the door to catastrophe. This is why I tell my students and readers to become as self-reliant as possible (financially and otherwise) since we are at risk as today’s economic ills get worse.
Unfortunately for pundits and economists, there is no “standard” to blame for the trillion-dollar disaster that is unfolding before our eyes today and in the months to come so, be prepared.
*http://mladjenovic.blogspot.ca/2012/03/lunacy-and-confusion-over-gold-standard.html (To access the article please copy the URL and paste it into your browser.) Copyright 2012. Paul Mladjenovic. All rights reserved.
Editor’s Note: The above article has been has edited ([ ]), abridged (…), and reformatted (including the title, some sub-titles and bold/italics emphases) for the sake of clarity and brevity to ensure a fast and easy read. The article’s views and conclusions are unaltered and no personal comments have been included to maintain the integrity of the original article.
The recent outperformance of precious metals, combined with budget problems in the United States and parts of Europe, has prompted some to speculate that gold or silver will become the next international reserve currency [but in my opinion that is highly unlikely. As such, investors would be highly encouraged to give pause [before] allocating a portion of their portfolios to precious metals. Let me explain further.] Words: 1094
FDR confiscated American’s gold for the same reason Lenin confiscated it in Russia and Hitler confiscated it in Germany, namely, to get it out of the hands of the people. [That view is contrary to the prevailing belief that such was done] to re-establish confidence in the dollar. [Let me explain the background of this confiscation and my rationale for coming to such a conclusion.] Words: 815
World Bank president Robert Zoellick has stirred up a hornet’s nest with his recent call for a return to a gold anchor in the global financial system. The usual suspects immediately denounced him – Keynesian Brad DeLong has [gone so far as to] anoint Zoellick the “Stupidest Man Alive” – [and I would like to add my voice to the chorus by explaining] the dangers of Zoellick’s gold proposal, and why fans of the classical gold standard should be wary. Words: 1708
The laws of gold confiscation are very clear in the U.S.: During any time of national crisis, it becomes illegal to buy, sell, or “hoard” gold bullion in any form. It is delineated under an Executive Order and can be re-administered as quickly as the assets in your checking account can be frozen. The penalties for violation are 10 years in prison, $10,000 fine, or both. Words: 821
Imagine living in a country where the government suddenly decides to make it illegal to hold a certain type of asset, and goes on a systematic process to relieve its citizens of such an asset? Such actions happen in wartime and by politically-corrupt regimes but how about private-asset seizure in the good old U.S.A.? Well, it has happened before. [The 64 trillion (in keeping with the times) dollar question is: “Will it happen again?”] Words: 585
That governments will want – and will NEED – much, much higher gold and silver prices in the future is counter intuitive, given that they have done everything within their power to throttle back and to keep a lid on bullion prices. Let me explain why. Words: 1300
As economic and political matters become more desperate in the U.S., so will what the government considers acceptable. If a debt default cannot be engineered via continuous inflation as the Fed’s current money-printing is attempting to do, it will occur via a direct repudiation of obligations or a quasi-surreptitious one such the hypothetical one I present in this article. Here is… a look (not a prediction) at a series of not improbable events that could develop [and which] would change our economic world overnight[ – and your financial well-being too]. Words: 1365
Do we really honest-to-God no-fingers-crossed cherry-on-top believe that the powers-that-be will simply allow us to mosey up to the cashiers cage and redeem or convert our Gold for whatever monetary unit reigns supreme or is created [should our current financial system and currencies collapse? As such,] IF there comes a time when the best move forward is to sell most of our Gold and switch to another asset class, one more likely to survive the transition intact, will we be able to see this as obvious and a no brainer? [Let me explain what could well happen and the effect such a development would have on all things Gold.] Words: 3037
Silver has more than doubled [in price] from its 2008 multi-year high…primarily due to demand among the industries of the developing world…and among those industries where silver is virtually irreplaceable… If silver goes too high, however, it could provoke government interference in the name of ensuring national security. Let me explain. Words: 606