Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Gold vs Cash in a Financial Crisis - Richard_Mills
2.Current Stock Market Rally Similarities To 1999 - Chris_Vermeulen
3.America See You On The Dark Side Of The Moon - Part2 - James_Quinn
4.Stock Market Trend Forecast Outlook for 2020 - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Who Said Stock Market Traders and Investor are Emotional Right Now? - Chris_Vermeulen
6.Gold Upswing and Lessons from Gold Tops - P_Radomski_CFA
7.Economic Tribulation is Coming, and Here is Why - Michael_Pento
8.What to Expect in Our Next Recession/Depression? - Raymond_Matison
9.The Fed Celebrates While Americans Drown in Financial Despair - John_Mauldin
10.Hi-yo Silver Away! - Richard_Mills
Last 7 days
WARNING PAYPAL Making a Grab for US $1200 Stimulus Payments - 4th Apr 20
US COVID-19 Death Toll Higher Than China’s Now. Will Gold Rally? - 4th Apr 20
Concerned That Asia Could Blow A Hole In Future Economic Recovery - 4th Apr 20
Bracing for Europe’s Coronavirus Contractionand Debt Crisis - 4th Apr 20
Stocks: When Grass Looks Greener on the Other Side of the ... Pond - 3rd Apr 20
How the C-Factor Could Decimate 2020 Global Gold and Silver Production - 3rd Apr 20
US Between Scylla and Charybdis Covid-19 - 3rd Apr 20
Covid19 What's Your Risk of Death Analysis by Age, Gender, Comorbidities and BMI - 3rd Apr 20
US Coronavirus Infections & Deaths Trend Trajectory - How Bad Will it Get? - 2nd Apr 20
Silver Looks Bearish Short to Medium Term - 2nd Apr 20
Mickey Fulp: 'Never Let a Good Crisis Go to Waste' - 2nd Apr 20
Stock Market Selloff Structure Explained – Fibonacci On Deck - 2nd Apr 20
COVID-19 FINANCIAL LOCKDOWN: Can PAYPAL Be Trusted to Handle US $1200 Stimulus Payments? - 2nd Apr 20
Day in the Life of Coronavirus LOCKDOWN - Sheffield, UK - 2nd Apr 20
UK Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Trend Trajectory - Deviation Against Forecast - 1st Apr 20
Huge Unemployment Is Coming. Will It Push Gold Prices Up? - 1st Apr 20
Gold Powerful 2008 Lessons That Apply Today - 1st Apr 20
US Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Projections Trend Forecast - Video - 1st Apr 20
From Global Virus Acceleration to Global Debt Explosion - 1st Apr 20
UK Supermarkets Coronavirus Panic Buying Before Lock Down - Tesco Empty Shelves - 1st Apr 20
Gold From a Failed Breakout to a Failed Breakdown - 1st Apr 20
P FOR PANDEMIC - 1st Apr 20
The Past Stock Market Week Was More Important Than You May Understand - 31st Mar 20
Coronavirus - No, You Do Not Hear the Fat Lady Warming Up - 31st Mar 20
Life, Religions, Business, Globalization & Information Technology In The Post-Corona Pandemics Age - 31st Mar 20
Three Charts Every Stock Market Trader and Investor Must See - 31st Mar 20
Coronavirus Stocks Bear Market Trend Forecast - Video - 31st Mar 20
Coronavirus Dow Stocks Bear Market Into End April 2020 Trend Forecast - 31st Mar 20
Is it better to have a loan or credit card debt when applying for a mortgage? - 31st Mar 20
US and UK Coronavirus Trend Trajectories vs Bear Market and AI Stocks Sector - 30th Mar 20
Are Gold and Silver Mirroring 1999 to 2011 Again? - 30th Mar 20
Stock Market Next Cycle Low 7th April - 30th Mar 20
United States Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Trend Forecasts Into End April 2020 - 29th Mar 20
Some Positives in a Virus Wracked World - 29th Mar 20
Expert Tips to Save on Your Business’s Office Supply Purchases - 29th Mar 20
An Investment in Life - 29th Mar 20
Sheffield Coronavirus Pandemic Infections and Deaths Forecast - 29th Mar 20
UK Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Projections Trend Forecast - Video - 28th Mar 20
The Great Coronavirus Depression - Things Are Going to Change. Here’s What We Should Do - 28th Mar 20
One of the Biggest Stock Market Short Covering Rallies in History May Be Imminent - 28th Mar 20
The Fed, the Coronavirus and Investing - 28th Mar 20
Women’s Fashion Trends in the UK this 2020 - 28th Mar 20
The Last Minsky Financial Snowflake Has Fallen – What Now? - 28th Mar 20
UK Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Projections Trend Forecast Into End April 2020 - 28th Mar 20
DJIA Coronavirus Stock Market Technical Trend Analysis - 27th Mar 20
US and UK Case Fatality Rate Forecast for End April 2020 - 27th Mar 20
US Stock Market Upswing Meets Employment Data - 27th Mar 20
Will the Fed Going Nuclear Help the Economy and Gold? - 27th Mar 20
What you need to know about the impact of inflation - 27th Mar 20
CoronaVirus Herd Immunity, Flattening the Curve and Case Fatality Rate Analysis - 27th Mar 20
NHS Hospitals Before Coronavirus Tsunami Hits (Sheffield), STAY INDOORS FINAL WARNING! - 27th Mar 20
CoronaVirus Curve, Stock Market Crash, and Mortgage Massacre - 27th Mar 20
Finding an Expert Car Accident Lawyer - 27th Mar 20
We Are Facing a Depression, Not a Recession - 26th Mar 20
US Housing Real Estate Market Concern - 26th Mar 20
Covid-19 Pandemic Affecting Bitcoin - 26th Mar 20
Italy Coronavirus Case Fataility Rate and Infections Trend Analysis - 26th Mar 20
Why Is Online Gambling Becoming More Popular? - 26th Mar 20
Dark Pools of Capital Profiting from Coronavirus Stock Markets CRASH! - 26th Mar 20
CoronaVirus Herd Immunity and Flattening the Curve - 25th Mar 20
Coronavirus Lesson #1 for Investors: Beware Predictions of Stock Market Bottoms - 25th Mar 20
CoronaVirus Stock Market Trend Implications - 25th Mar 20
Pandemonium in Precious Metals Market as Fear Gives Way to Command Economy - 25th Mar 20
Pandemics and Gold - 25th Mar 20
UK Coronavirus Hotspots - Cities with Highest Risks of Getting Infected - 25th Mar 20
WARNING US Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Going Ballistic! - 24th Mar 20
Coronavirus Crisis - Weeks Where Decades Happen - 24th Mar 20
Industry Trends: Online Casinos & Online Slots Game Market Analysis - 24th Mar 20
Five Amazingly High-Tech Products Just on the Market that You Should Check Out - 24th Mar 20
UK Coronavirus WARNING - Infections Trend Trajectory Worse than Italy - 24th Mar 20
Rick Rule: 'A Different Phrase for Stocks Bear Market Is Sale' - 24th Mar 20
Stock Market Minor Cycle Bounce - 24th Mar 20
Gold’s century - While stocks dominated headlines, gold quietly performed - 24th Mar 20
Big Tech Is Now On The Offensive Against The Coronavirus - 24th Mar 20
Socialism at Its Finest after Fed’s Bazooka Fails - 24th Mar 20
Dark Pools of Capital Profiting from Coronavirus Stock and Financial Markets CRASH! - 23rd Mar 20
Will Trump’s Free Cash Help the Economy and Gold Market? - 23rd Mar 20
Coronavirus Clarifies Priorities - 23rd Mar 20
Could the Coronavirus Cause the Next ‘Arab Spring’? - 23rd Mar 20
Concerned About The US Real Estate Market? Us Too! - 23rd Mar 20
Gold Stocks Peak Bleak? - 22nd Mar 20
UK Supermarkets Coronavirus Panic Buying, Empty Tesco Shelves, Stock Piling, Hoarding Preppers - 22nd Mar 20
US Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Going Ballistic as Government Start to Ramp Up Testing - 21st Mar 20
Your Investment Portfolio for the Next Decade—Fix It with the “Anti-Stock” - 21st Mar 20
CORONA HOAX: This Is Almost Completely Contrived and Here’s Proof - 21st Mar 20
Gold-Silver Ratio Tops 100; Silver Headed For Sub-$10 - 21st Mar 20
Coronavirus - Don’t Ask, Don’t Test - 21st Mar 20
Napag and Napag Trading Best Petroleum & Crude Oil Company - 21st Mar 20
UK Coronavirus Infections Trend Trajectory Worse than Italy - Government PANICs! Sterling Crashes! - 20th Mar 20
UK Critical Care Nurse Cries at Empty SuperMarket Shelves, Coronavirus Panic Buying Stockpiling - 20th Mar 20
Coronavirus Is Not an Emergency. It’s a War - 20th Mar 20
Why You Should Invest in the $5 Gold Coin - 20th Mar 20
Four Key Stock Market Questions To This Coronavirus Crisis Everyone is Asking - 20th Mar 20
Gold to Silver Ratio’s Breakout – Like a Hot Knife Through Butter - 20th Mar 20
The Coronavirus Contraction - Only Cooperation Can Defeat Impending Global Crisis - 20th Mar 20
Is This What Peak Market Fear Looks Like? - 20th Mar 20
Alessandro De Dorides - Business Consultant - 20th Mar 20
Why a Second Depression is Possible but Not Likely - 20th Mar 20

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Coronavirus-bear-market-2020-analysis

Ron Paul's Battle for Financial Sanity

Politics / Central Banks Sep 16, 2009 - 06:17 AM GMT

By: David_Gordon

Politics

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleRon Paul has since the inception of his tenure in Congress waged a heroic battle for financial sanity, and in End the Fed he gives us insights from that struggle available nowhere else. Dr. Paul had from an early age an affinity for the free market. "In the 1960s," he tells us, "I discovered the writings of economists such as Ludwig von Mises, F.A. Hayek, Murray N. Rothbard, and Hans F. Sennholz. I gradually found the answers I had been searching for. Even for the experts, it literally took centuries to fully understand the nature of money and the business cycle." (p.43)


Dr. Paul during his service in the Air Force was able to hear Mises speak, and when in Congress met with Hayek. "I had the pleasure of hearing Hayek lecture in Washington, around 1980. Following that meeting, we had a private dinner together and spent several hours visiting." (p.51)

But the principal economist who influenced him was Murray Rothbard. "Of all the Austrian economic greats of the twentieth century, I got to know Murray Rothbard the best.. . . I recall his surprise when he found out I had read his essay ‘Gold and Freely Fluctuating Exchange Rates.’. . . If there’s one book that the Washington establishment should read now, it’s Rothbard’s book America’s Great Depression. In this book, he demonstrates that it was the Fed that created the late-1920s boom that led to bust, and Hoover’s interventions that prolonged the Great Depression." (pp.57–8)

The last remark begins to suggest a key reason that the Fed should be abolished. Far from being a means to maintain monetary stability, as its supporters falsely insist, the Fed through expansion of bank credit bears primary responsibility for the business cycle. The expansion temporarily lowers the money rate of interest below the true market rate, largely determined by people’s time preference, i.e., their preference for present over future goods. Businesses, with money available, expand; but the new projects cannot be sustained. When the monetary expansion ceases (if it doesn’t, we will have hyperinflation, with disastrous consequences), these new investments must be liquidated. The process of doing so is the depression.

As Dr. Paul aptly remarks, "The Fed can indeed provide liquidity in these times [of credit contraction] by a simple operation of printing more paper money to cover deposits. But if you think of the cycle as beginning in the boom phase – when money and credit are loose and lending soars to fund unsustainable projects – matters change substantially.. . .when central banks push down [interest] rates on a whim, the impression is created that savings are there when they are in fact completely absent. The resulting bust becomes inevitable as goods that come to production can’t be purchased, and reality sets in by waves. Businesses fail, homes are foreclosed upon, and people bail out of stocks or whatever is the fashionable investment of the day." (pp.29–30)

Instead of the Fed and its false claim that we need an "elastic" currency, we should instead remove the government entirely from the creation of money. In a free society, money would be a commodity; most likely that commodity would be gold. "In fact, I’m only observing reality: the idea of sound money in most of human history has been bound up with gold money. Can there be sound money without a gold standard? In principle, yes. And I’d be very happy for a system that would permit markets to once again choose the most suitable money, whatever that turns out to be. I’m not for government imposing any particular standard: no central bank, no legal tender, no privilege for any commodity chosen as a backing for the currency." (p.71)

Dr. Paul has presented the Austrian view of money in a succinct, accurate, and effective way; but what justifies the claim that he offers insights available nowhere else? Are there not many excellent books and articles that explain the views of Mises and Rothbard on money, not least the works of those two economists themselves? The answer arises from Dr. Paul’s many years of service in Congress. In that capacity, he has had conversations with several Fed Chairmen, and one of these conversations enables us to solve a mystery.

Alan Greenspan epitomizes the control of the money supply by the government that Dr. Paul opposes. But is this not at first sight surprising? Greenspan was a follower of Ayn Rand and shared her devotion to laissez-faire capitalism. In an essay written for the Objectivist newsletter, reprinted in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, Greenspan offered a strong defense of the gold standard. The vital advantage of the gold standard, Greenspan explained, is to prevent the government from manipulating the money supply: "in the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. . . The financial policy of the welfare state requires that there be no way for the owners of wealth to protect themselves. This is the shabby secret of the welfare statists’ tirades against gold." (p.81)

Greenspan, amazingly, told Dr. Paul "that he had just recently reread it [the article] and wouldn’t change a word of it." (p.86). How could Greenspan say this, while presiding over a system that embodies the government control of money his article repudiated? Greenspan thought that he could conduct the financial system in the same way as the gold standard would operate. "I [Greenspan] think that you will find. . .that the most effective central banks in this fiat money period tend to be successful largely because we tend to replicate that which would have probably have occurred under a commodity standard in general." (p.88)

In other words, we need to remove government from the money supply, unless, of course, I and people like me are in control. Greenspan’s position brings to mind the Jewish tradition that King Solomon thought that the restrictions imposed in Deuteronomy (XVII: 16-17) on kings about wives and horses did not apply to him. Because, as the wisest of men, he knew the reasons for these restrictions, he could avoid the temptations these rules guarded against and take more wives and horses than allowed. His overweening arrogance led to disaster, and Greenspan has fallen victim to the same syndrome.

Dr. Paul does not regard Greenspan as the smartest of the Fed Chairmen he met. "I had the most interaction with [Paul] Volcker. He was more personable and smarter than the others, including the more recent board chairmen Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke" (p.48).

For Bernanke, it is clear that Dr. Paul has a deep distaste. He suspects that Bernanke has acted in secret to manipulate the price of gold, and he bristles at Bernanke’s refusal to disclose his operations to Congress. "So when Bernanke quickly refuses to give us information about the trillions of dollars of credit that he recently passed out in the bailout process because that would be ‘counterproductive,’ he is really saying, ‘It’s none of your business.’" (p.174)

The book recounts remarkable conversations with others besides Greenspan. When he served on the Gold Commission in Ronald Reagan’s administration, he on one occasion flew by helicopter with the president to Andrews Air Force Base. "‘Ron,’ the president told me, ‘no great nation that abandoned the gold standard has remained a great nation.’ He indeed was sympathetic, as he was to many libertarian constitutional ideas, but he was also swayed by staff pressure to be pragmatic on most issues." (p.74)

Reagan, it is apparent, could not break with the illusion that the government needs to be in control. That illusion is avidly propagated by those who profit from it. One such was the notorious George R. Brown, a longtime backer of Lyndon Johnson. Brown displayed interest in Dr. Paul’s campaign for Congress in 1976, and in one conversation told him, "‘Remember, for the economic system to work, business and government must be partners. I cringed and quickly scooted out the door. . . Once I was in office and after my votes and positions became known, the message was clear, and I never heard from him [Brown] again." (p.159)

Dr. Paul’s fight for freedom has not been confined to the issue of sound money. He has also led the struggle against an interventionist and imperialist foreign policy. But the fight for liberty is seamless, and he shows that an aggressive foreign policy depends on government control of the money supply: "it is no coincidence that the century of total war coincided with the century of central banking. When governments had to fund their own wars without a paper money machine to rely upon, they economized on resources. They found diplomatic solutions to prevent war, and after they started a war they ended it as soon as possible." (p.63)

The book contains an abundance of other arguments against our current monetary system, e.g., that it violates the Constitution. Dr. Paul brings to bear on his topic much learning, and readers will discover how monetary debasement helped bring the Byzantine Empire to ruin as well as Thomas Paine’s poor opinion of paper money. Those who have absorbed the book’s message will come to a clear conclusion: End the Fed.

September 16, 2009

David Gordon [send him mail] is a senior fellow at the Ludwig von Mises Institute and editor of its Mises Review. He is also the author of The Essential Rothbard. See also his Books on Liberty.

http://www.lewrockwell.com

    © 2009 Copyright / David Gordon LewRockwell.com - All Rights Reserved
    Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules