Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Reversion to Mean


Or; why I am dumping gold

I don’t really have that much left. Living close to the bone for the last couple of years has reduced my hoard to a embarrassingly small number of eagles.

But with the current congress and administration being as corrupt and venal as the prior congress and administration, there will be many things coming into play to “save” the system in the next while.

Alas, BHO is enamored with the idea of channeling FDR. And should the banks begin going south in a serious manner, I suspect that he would be more than happy to pull the shitty trick that FDR pulled and nationalize the store of wealth that is gold bullion. In a sense, I have no real issue with this. In another sense, it is repugnant to me.

In the second sense, gold is stored wealth. As such, it is dead wealth. It is a means to hoard and store the fruits of past deeds and productivity. In old folks who have worked their whole life, it is a means of allowing comfort and a degree of certitude in a future where their ability to earn is diminished. In that sense, when the gold is taken away, it is casting these into the maelstrom. This is an evil act. But it also represents a very small part of the world of gold.

In the main sense, gold is the wealth of the wealthy rapists who have transferred the productivity and wealth of the world into their own pockets. They are buying up gold to lock in their ill-gotten gains.

So taking gold is a sword with two edges. I can’t say that I will be particularly depressed either way, but the point of this screed is to discuss using silver as a store of wealth for us lowly types.

Here is the part where Dorcas’ Daddy will probably take exception (BTW, make sure you check out his site, it is one of the best combinations of commentary, obsession with timekeeping, and metallurgical porn around). I Think that Silver is undervalued in a historical sense. It used to be worth around 30:1 compared to gold earlier in this century. Before that it had been as high as 13:1 in the 17th and 18th centuries. Right now is at 60:1.

No one has ever nationalized silver to my knowledge. If shit starts going down, it will probably head up faster than gold. It also has the advantage of being in the price range of stuff people need in hard times. Gold is big stuff, it usefulness is actually diminished by it’s high value. Flashing around an eagle may mean a gun in your face. Flashing around some silver is not nearly as rewarding.


Dorcas' Daddy said...

I agree, you know I think gold is ridiculously overpriced--it's only value is belief.

Gold should run about $250/oz if we're charging extraction cost. Silver---at most $7.

But for practical--holy crap, money has no value its barter and anarchy--yes, I think silver is the way to go.

However, I think there's enough silver and gold to make the price fall in step with the fall of the dollar.

The only commodities that I think will hold up have extraction costs very near to their end-user price.

And many metals are actually 'extra' in the mining of other products--silver is one.

So if copper, tin, and nickel production go down, expect the cost of their secondary metals to rise (assuming non-correlated demand factors, etc.).

Iridium, Bismuth, Silver, you get the idea.

DD said...

This was so hilariously wrong in retrospect I probably owe you an apology!

Or rather, it's better to be wrong than early.