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Tuesday, June 29, 2021

How Fiat Money Will Destroy America


Poor Man Survival

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How Fiat Money Will Destroy America

We’ve warned readers prepare for what’s about to hit America.

Riots, flash-crashes, more drastic central bank intervention... it’s all in the cards…along with Democrat monstrous deficit spending ehich is always tasty to the public in the SHORT Run but as Margaret Thatcher wanred: Socialism is fine until you run out of other people’s money.

Economist Saifedean Ammous wrote the best bitcoin book out there, called The Bitcoin Standard. And it’s not even about bitcoin.

The vast majority of the book is about the dastardly effects of unsound money.

“Human civilization,” he writes, “flourished in times and places where sound money was widely adopted, while unsound money all too frequently coincided with civilizational decline and societal collapse.”

Rome, Constantinople, Florence, Venice… the story is the same. If history is any guide, a sound monetary standard is a necessary prereq for human flourishing, says Ammous, “without which society stands on the precipice of barbarism and destruction.”

Moreover, history reveals it’s impossible to protect yourself from the consequences of others holding money that’s harder than your money.

In the end, the hardest money wins.

“It is ironic, and very telling,” he points out, “that in the era of government money, governments themselves own far more gold in their official reserves than they did under the international gold standard of 1871–1914”

While governments hold hard money, good at maintaining its value, the masses hold fiat, poor at maintaining its value.

Money informs psychology. Its architecture incentivizes behaviors, often subliminally, right below the curtain of consciousness.

“The better the money is at holding its value,” says Saifedean, “the more it incentivizes people to delay consumption and instead dedicate resources for production in the future, leading to capital accumulation and improvement of living standards”

Fiat money, on the other hand, does the opposite. It incentivizes people into short-termism, planned obsolescence, disposability, and instant gratification. Sound money makes for good ancestors. Unsound money makes for bad ancestors who sell out future generations for short-term gains.

It destroys culture and communities. It creates the cutthroat environment many people attribute to being an inherent feature of capitalism. It infects everything with its fakeness. It creates fake societies, fake ideas, and fake people.

Worse? It concentrates power in the last place you would want power to be.

How Fiat Destroys Culture

By Stephan Livera

Can the type of money change the culture of a society? This might seem like an absurd proposition, but it is supported by the arguments of proponents of the Austrian school of economics.

First, let’s contextualize the importance of sound money as opposed to fiat money. Mises notes in The Theory of Money and Credit: “It is impossible to grasp the meaning of the idea of sound money if one does not realize that it was devised as an instrument for the protection of civil liberties against despotic inroads on the part of governments.“

Fiat money has never arisen through purely voluntary market actions. It has always been coercively imposed via interventions such as legal tender laws, capital gains tax laws, central banking, laws permitting fractional reserve banking, government bailout guarantees, etc. This causes degeneration in the quality of money used by society. But are there cultural consequences of this?

To see the cultural consequences, we must first understand the pivotal role money and prices play in coordinating production across society. Entrepreneurs must act under uncertainty to gather the required resources to offer their goods and services. And yet money, their unit of account, for measuring profit and loss, is being manipulated by the government. Money is created as new loans are issued by commercial and retail banks, and the first recipients of that money benefit at the expense of late recipients.

Using money with continual inflation encourages short-termism and haste. We live more like animals in the wild. Animals in the wild care mostly about their next meal, rather than thinking, planning, and building for the long term as humans can do when we’re at our best.

Consider the counterfactual world of living under sound money, chosen by the market. In this world, how does the state fund large programs? It must openly tax citizens, and for this, politicians pay a high price in lost popularity and risk losing their next election. Instead of explicit taxation, politicians inside the government will prefer to use more hidden forms of funding for their programs. In order to do this, they must first remove the check of sound money.

Going one step further, the creation and enforcement of fiat money enables larger and more centralized government. Large government programs become possible that were not possible or sustainable under a market-chosen, sound money standard.

Consider the impact of profligate spending under a market-chosen monetary standard. In the past, this meant that governments spending big and living large were subject to net gold outflows to other countries.

While many like to think of government programs and welfare statism as a "safety net" for society, consider that these programs fundamentally drive the wrong behaviors. Where historically, non-government-based mutual-aid societies promoted a culture of self-reliance and thrift, government welfare states promote the opposite, the end result being that government programs remove the safeguards that a market society would have. In this way, fiat money frees people from the prior "restraints" of polite society, with expectations for productive and civil behavior broken.

Freed of prior constraints that families, religion, and communities used to impose, people often turn to more short-term gratification. They may engage in more reckless behavior that previously would have had economic consequences, such as the cost of raising children. Fiat inflation forces people to invest in just about anything rather than save in fiat cash, driving more money and debt as leverage through the financial services sector than otherwise would be the case.

With cheap fiat debt, governments may more cheaply engage in warfare or sustain warfare for longer than they otherwise could have. Cheap fiat debt essentially provides the government with command over more of society’s resources than it otherwise would have had.

For readers interested in learning more, I highly recommend reading Jörg Guido Hülsmann’s The Ethics of Money Production, and watching his lecture here on the Mises Institute YouTube channel.

How could this situation be rectified? If the world were to transition back to market-chosen money, such as gold or bitcoin, we would see the discipline of the free market reassert itself. Until then, let’s recognize the ways that society and culture have been greatly influenced by government fiat money.

Stephan Livera

This article originally appeared on the Mises Institute blog right here.




Wokeness=Asleep at the wheel…Don’t be SUCKERED!

If you've been prepping for more than, say, a day, you know to stockpile things like food, water, and first aid supplies. That's the easy to remember stuff, right? We all know we'll need to eat and stay hydrated.

However, there are a number of things many preppers overlook in their planning. Things that will certainly come into play at some point during any sort of long-term event.

1. Heirloom Seeds - For the uninitiated, heirloom seeds are ones that are a true strain. Meaning, if you grow a watermelon from an heirloom seed, the seeds found in the ripe melon can be planted the next season and will, theoretically at least, grow just fine.

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Ron said...

The Fed & DC now represent a horrible disease befalling our nation.

Sammy said...

hanks to the demo-rat/socialist in the WH-gasoline went up 20 cents overnight, our suppliers told us higher prices to kick up soon-even Micky D/s raised its prices. Well, you did warn us this would happen when this bastard took office.

Nona said...

Dems are idiots