Sunday, October 18, 2009

An Open Response to Publius




Publius:

I guess what I liked about it was its commentary on the attitudes of gold-heads.  As a group, the folks who are out there screaming "gold, gold, gold" are, for the most part, buttheads, and do fit the description in the link.

The folks out there buying gold and talking their book are actually speaking of the failure of the currency (which will be a horrendous event, coupled with massive pain and countless losses).  The big trouble I have with a lot of the folks who do this is their smug, self-satisfied, and thoughtless disregard of what their "wealth" will bring them.  To be "rich" in a sea of poverty and want is not the aspiration of a decent man.  

As for gold as the medium of exchange and a non-fiat based currency, that is a different story.  I think that we ought to be exploring how to move to a more stable currency system.   But before we go haring off chasing some purist notion of a "stable currency", we should look into the past for more guidance.  A straight gold standard brings with it a lot of issues as well as stability.  One should consider the words below.

3 comments:

tweell said...

A bimetallic standard worked for the USA for over one hundred years. A loaf of bread cost the same amount of money for Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt. It isn't perfect by any means, but neither are we. The current method of increasing taxes by inflation robs the elderly and cautious investors of their savings. Economists moan about the negative savings rate of the American public, but saving doesn't make sense when our money shrinks in value faster than any interest rate offered by banks. Indeed, borrowing all that you can and paying the debt with tomorrow's cheaper dollars becomes a way of life, leading to crashes like what we have now.

Publius said...

Now, here you've gone and made me feel bad.
I think I see your main point now. Yes, those who aspire to be wealthy in a sea of poverty are not to be admired.
I like William Jennings Bryan. A mix of gold and silver would be a better way to go than a straight gold standard, for sure. Gold is too precious... "my precious" as the golem called it.
So I think we can agree here.
I think I just had an over-reaction based on not having enough coffee as of yet at that time in the morning.
Unfortunately, I see a 'currency event' as likely. Gold won't save society. I don't even think it will save the gold bugs.

Publius said...

I'd like to add something, now that my mind is clear after biking to work.

I understand why "gold bugs" might receive opprobrium for preparing for and even benefiting from the collapse of a currency regime.
However, aren't we "preppers" liable to the same charges? That we are preparing for, expecting, or even cheering on the collapse our our economic and political systems?
I think gold alone would be too much of a straight jacket. I think we need alternative currencies of many kinds. Gold and silver among them.
But we shouldn't be too understanding of the scapegoating of doomsayers, because we are in line for that kind of attack.