Showing posts with label Gold. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gold. Show all posts

Friday, January 20, 2012

Jim Rickards on the War with Iran

Here's an excellent interview on King World News with Jim Rickards discussing what describes as an already begun war with Iran that is going to escalate soon.

Fair warning, Jim Rickards is an advocate of hard money but still believes (like the monetarists) that money should be controlled by the government. He rightly criticizes fiat money policies, but only goes so far as to suggest that things would be better if only his sympathizers were in power, which never lasts beyond a single administration. Other than that, he tends to be dead on, is incredibly intelligent and clearly has access to government intelligence no one else does. As he shows in spades in this interview.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Protesting the Banks

There are a couple movements afoot to protest banks. Eric Cantona, French footballer, has suggested withdrawing your entire bank deposits to crash the banks. The date of December 7th (this coming Tuesday) has been suggested as the day of reckoning. (December 7th is also when the Irish parliament decides on the IMF bailout of Irish bank bondholders, promising to indebt Irish taxpayers for generations.) Its not clear what the political motivations are, i.e. whether Cantona and his followers view the corrupt banks as agents of freedom and capitalism or as agents of statism. Given that the movement is European, the motives are likely anti-capitalist, i.e. if the protest works they'd probably advocate an alternate government controlled entity to control money and credit. In his interview he even says that he's donating his idea to the trade unions. Funny because the banks are primary enablers of the welfare state and unions are prime beneficiaries of the same welfare state (along with the banks themselves) at the expense of everyone else. If it weren't for the banks, governments would be financing the welfare state by dramatically higher taxes or direct printing of money. Which I guess would at least be more honest but not solve the fundamental bankruptcy of the welfare state.

The mainstream media in Europe has taken Cantona's bank protest seriously and has argued, bizarrely, that while the banks are fraudulent and corrupt, everyone should leave their money be and solve the bankers' corruption through our ever-trustworthy politicians. Ummm, ok.

Another more narrowly targeted protest is being promoted by Max Keiser: buy silver and crash JP Morgan, the latter having a massive short position against silver. Max Keiser has a mixed relationship with capitalism. He's a great source of information on the fraudulent and fascistic (i.e. 'public-private' relationships) in the banks. He frequently refers to the U.S. Constitution in condemning the banks illegal activities. His previous life was in trading, especially program trading. But he's no pro-capitalist, has advocated various controls, supports the enviromental movement and is associated with Iranian state media. He has even suggested Sharia law as a third alternative to socialism and capitalism. (Keiser's comments start around 6:30)

Banks have been, by law, the enablers of democratic socialism for the last hundred years. Entitlement programs have grown so large that the inheritors of capitalist productivity have stalled everywhere. How can they not stall when such things as vacation are considered a 'human right'. While the banks were lending to governments, expanding credit to 'stimulate' the economy, creating financial instruments to implement government housing policy, they were also getting their cut. They are very noticably still obtaining record profits and bonuses during the worst financial period in 80 years.

The solution to the banking 'problem' however is not some new or different form of socialism, and certainly not Sharia. The solution is a laissez-faire capitalism. The banking system should be entirely separate from the state (like religion, education, economics), no supplying banks with printed money, no guaranteeing their deposits, no suspensions of specie payments, no state definition of money and who has to accept it. In a free banking system credit expansion is much smaller, not systemic and is self-correcting (through bank runs and failures). In a free banking system we'd be using gold and gold notes from our most trustworthy banks for money. In a free banking system we wouldn't witness such events as the great depression of the 1930s or the now burst housing bubble of the 2000s.  The first step towards freeing the banking system should be to let the big banks fail and the smaller more rational, bubble-avoiding banks take over. The second step should be to close down the Federal Reserve Banks.

So what about the protests?  Since both seem to be directed at bringing down capitalism rather than supporting more freedom, I cannot sanction either. I'm guessing there will be a more Tea Party, pro-capitalist, End-the-Fed style bank protest in the future and hopefully it'll make the right points. Meanwhile I do recommend, on no particular date: own physical gold and silver (junk silver is good for small transactions), get the hell out of bonds, stay low on deposited cash, use local banks and credit unions over the big bailed-out institutions, and have a good chunk of cash in a safety deposit box for the inevitable 'bank holidays'. Keep the state-run banking system at arms length as much as possible.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Gold in Del Mar

This is a heads up to the locals that want to buy gold. Liberty Gold has recently opened up shop in Del Mar. Their prices are a bit over a mail order outfit like Tulving or CMI (my favorite online, but they don't post all their prices, although they do post some specials). As of this instant Liberty Gold is selling Kruggerands for $52.30 (3.8%) over spot whereas Tulving has them for $19.95 (1.5%) over spot. For that extra $30 per coin you get the ability to see the merchandise before buying, avoid shipping costs, avoid the risk of postal workers stealing your stuff, and you can buy just one or two as opposed to 10 or 20 online. I should also point out that they buy as well, so regardless of where you get yours, having a local shop to sell it to makes for better liquidity.

I haven't yet purchased from them, nor do I recommending buying gold at record highs unless you know what you're doing, but wanted to let y'all know.

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