ECON 101 – LECTURE 3

GOLD STANDARD UNIVERSITY

Summer Semester, 2002

Monetary Economics 101: The Real Bills Doctrine of Adam Smith

Lecture 3

CREDIT UNIONS

– The Invisible Vacuum Cleaner –
– The Quantity Theory of Money –
– Destruction of the Gold Standard –
– And Discrediting the Real Bills Doctrine –
– Are Two Sides of the Same Coin –
– The Working Man As the Guardian of Sound Money –

Lending versus Clearing

July 15, 2002

I dedicate this lecture to the memory of Ely Moore, the first union official ever to have been elected to the Congress in 1834. He was a solid gold-standard man who believed, with Daniel Webster, that

“Of all the contrivances for cheating the laboring classes of mankind, none has been more effective than that which deludes them with paper money.”

Daniel Webster

In the first two Lectures I dealt with a new blueprint for a gold coin standard for America and the world, designed to avoid two great pitfalls: (1) the pitfall of breakdown of social peace between creditors and debtors, (2) the pitfall of entrusting gold coins that represent the savings of the people to the banks. In this Lecture I shall recommend that the guardianship to preserve the system of sound money should, instead, be entrusted to the laboring classes and their representatives, the Credit Unions, which would be the only financial institutions chartered to carry deposit accounts denominated in Gold Eagle coins, and which would act as clearing houses for the circulation of real bills.

Recall that real bills provide credits to move urgently demanded consumer goods from the producers to the retail outlets. We don’t need banks for that. In any event, short term commercial credits arise not through lending but through clearing. As the supply of consumer goods emerge in production, purchasing media to finance its movement to the consumer emerge simultaneously through the process of clearing. No lending is involved. Coin, credit, circulation, clearing – the four C’s – are central ideas that economics has ignored. We are going to revive them here in preparation to pave the way to a new gold coin standard. Continue reading

ECON 101 – LECTURE 2

GOLD STANDARD UNIVERSITY

Summer Semester, 2002

Monetary Economics 101: The Real Bills Doctrine of Adam Smith

Lecture 2

DON’T FIX THE PRICE OF GOLD!

July 8, 2002

– Let the Gold Eagle Coin Soar without the Heavy Baggage of Dollar Debt –
– Don’t Let the Banks Sabotage the New Gold Coin Standard – – The World without Banks –

Courtesy of Antal E Fekete @ Professor Fekete.com:

I extend a hearty welcome to my audience at the first university course offered in the 21st century on the gold standard, made possible by Gold-Eagle University, an educational website to offer you knowledge put under taboo by mainstream/establishment universities. Taking this course will not get you a degree, but it may get you something more precious: a better understanding of the world, its past, present, and future.

In last week’s inaugural lecture I offered a blueprint for a new gold coin standard the features of which can be summed up as follows:

(1) Open the Mint to free and unlimited coinage of gold. The one-ounce Gold Eagle coin should be adopted as a monetary unit minted for the account of anyone tendering the right amount and purity of gold, free of charge.

(2) To get the grass-root circulation of gold coins going, labor organizations (including those of pensioners and retired people) ought to be involved through their Credit Unions offering gold-coin deposit facilities. Banks must be excluded.

(3) Short-term credit to move goods from the producer to the consumer should be provided by the bill market, rather than by the banks, on the pattern of the pre-1914 way to finance world trade with gold.

(4) Long-term credit to the economy should be provided by the gold-bond market. The primary demand for gold bonds comes from financial institutions offering gold life insurance and gold annuity policies to the people. The primary supply is from the government and firms that want to operate on the basis of gold capital. Gold bonds must have a sinking fund protection. Issuers of gold bonds must see the revenues with which to retire the liability.

Parallel Monetary Standard

The first remark on this blueprint which, as far as I am aware, is new and radically different from any other that has been offered so far, is that it expressly avoids fixing the price of gold. At least for a transitional period that may last for several years, the paper dollar and the Eagle gold coins would circulate side-by side at a floating exchange rate. In other words, there would be a parallel monetary standard and the paper dollar would be free to compete with the Gold Eagle. The market should in the end decide which of the two deserved to survive. This is a major departure from historical precedents, which have all involved the stabilization of the paper currency in terms of gold. The question arises: why should we have such a complicated blueprint when a simpler one, fixing the gold price, could accomplish the same objective? Continue reading

In the Gold Standard, How Are Interest Rates Set?

This is courtesy of Professor Antal E. Fekete and published on The Gold Standard Institute:

The answer is profoundly important as we debate what sort of role gold ought to play and evaluate the various gold standards being proposed.

If people are free to own gold coins directly, then the mechanics of setting the rate of interest are simple. Let’s define a term. The marginal saver is the saver who could go either way, either holding a bond or a gold coin. If the rate of interest ticks downward, he will sell the bond, or withdraw his money from the bank, thus forcing the bank to sell the bond. He would rather hold the gold than commit to the time and risk for such a low interest rate. If the rate of interest ticks upward, he will buy the bond, or deposit his coin in the bank.

The marginal saver sets the floor under the rate of interest. It cannot fall below his preference or else he will vote with his gold. His preference has real teeth (unlike today where savers are totally disenfranchised).

Let’s define one more term. The marginal entrepreneur is the entrepreneur with the lowest rate of profit. If his profit falls for any reason, such as due to a rise in costs, he will shut down his enterprise. One cost is the cost of capital, i.e. the rate of interest. No entrepreneur can borrow at a rate higher than his rate of profit, and the marginal entrepreneur is the first to buy the bond and sell his capital stock at an uptick in the rate of interest. Continue reading

The Siren-song of Welfare State

By Hugo Salinas Price and courtesy of Plata:

Our world is run – and has been run for some time now – by a relatively very small group of individuals who have it in their power to manage, as they think, the economies of nations. Managing the affairs of a nation implies making people behave in ways in which they would not otherwise behave. National management of an economy thus means making millions of individuals do what they wouldn’t do if left to themselves.

There is not one single national economy in the world today whose people are free to do as they wish; it is not so much that people are forbidden to do what they think best, as that their choices are being narrowed, day by day, to being able to do only what is allowed.

One of the very first choices which free individuals made thousands of years ago was the choice of the money they would use in their exchanges of goods and services; after using other substances such as salt, or copper, or sea-shells, they finally chose gold and silver for use as money, because all humanity valued these metals above all other substances, and consequently gold and silver were the most convenient substances to use as money. Continue reading