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Monday, August 8, 2011

Monetary crankdom update

A few notes involving currencies. I mention these topics in passing for the moment, lacking the time just now to give them the more in-depth treatment I'd prefer.

George Will, lately a more libertarian-leaning figure than long thought to be, writes that "events seem to be validating [Ron Paul's] message, which is that the country's financial condition is awful." But isn't Ron Paul's message that the country's financial condition can be drastically improved by getting rid of the Fed and implementing a gold standard and/or competing currencies? And given that it is, what effect would such policies have in the current troubled financial situation? Would not a gold standard, insofar as it truly is binding, render the federal government actually incapable of paying its bills and thus cause vastly worse turmoil than we have now? Or is the whole question of a gold standard not worth discussing, because such a policy would be abandoned readily in times such as the present, thus raising a profound credibility issue that gold-standard proponents have never been able to resolve? And as for competing currencies...

... It wasn't that long ago, just a few months, that a wave of libertarian enthusiasm arose over the electronic currency Bitcoin and the liberation it offered from government oversight. How's Bitcoin doing now, you ask?

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