Inflation: The Pessimistic View

Here’s a long-term view of the consequences of current economic policies from Jim Puplava:

The government has three ways of obtaining money. Unfortunately increasing taxes is not a popular choice. Taxation is unpopular with the people. The last two presidents to raise taxes in the U. S. were George Bush senior and Bill Clinton. Bush Senior lost his reelection bid over the tax issue and Clinton lost Democratic control over Congress. Because taxes are unpopular with the people, governments resort to an indirect means of taxation. It is what we know as inflation. If the government can find a means of expropriating resources without the direct knowledge of its subjects, they will do so. In effect what the government resorts to is a form of counterfeiting. By creating money “out of thin air,” the government is creating its own money that wasn’t appropriated directly through taxation. Counterfeiting is simply another name for inflation.

As I mentioned earlier, inflation creates no social benefit for society. It is simply a means of redistributing wealth from producers to nonproducers. Inflation creates no new wealth. No new goods or capital stock are created by it. Wealth is simply transferred to those who benefit first from the creation of the new money. This is usually the bankers and the financial system through fractional reserve banking or the government through debt monetization. It takes time for inflation to work its way through the financial system and the economy. Those who receive the new money first profit the most from it. By the time the expansion of money works its way through the system in the way of higher prices, the people are the last to know. The inflation profiteers have long since made their profits. Society as a whole must now bear the cost of that inflation through higher prices.

However, in order to keep playing the game and expropriate the people’s money, the inflation profiteers must keep the people fooled. That is why all government and central bank actions are shrouded with an air of mystery or secrecy. FOMC meetings are enshrined with a religious reverence. The meetings are conducted under the air of priestly secrecy. In his book “Secrets of the Temple,” author William Greider says it well by stating, “Like the temple, the Fed did not answer to the people, it spoke for them. Its decrees were cast in a mysterious language people could not understand, but its voice, they knew, was powerful and important…The Public’s confusion over money and its ignorance of money politics were heightened by the scientific pretensions of economics. Average citizens simply could not understand the language, and most economists made no effort to translate for them.” [8]

It is my belief that we are now embarked on a journey that will take us into a hyperinflationary depression. There may be brief deflationary spurts that punctuate this journey along the way, but an examination of history leads me to conclude hyperinflation is much more likely than deflation. Unlike the U.S. economy during the 1930s or Japan in the 1990s, the U.S. economy is no longer self sufficient in capital, manufacturing, and energy. And unlike the 1930s, our currency is no longer backed by gold. The U.S. is now the world’s largest debtor nation versus the world’s largest creditor nation as we were in the 30’s. We are no longer self sufficient in energy as we were during the last depression. We import 60 percent of our energy needs, a percentage that is growing each decade. We must also compete with other nations for the world’s last remaining barrels of oil as we enter into the twilight of the oil age. During the 30’s the U.S. created the Texas Railroad Commission to regulate oil and prop up prices because of the abundance of oil in this country. In contrast to the 1930s, U.S. oil and natural gas production decline each year. This forces the U.S. to import more of its energy needs, energy we pay for with dollars. When the world no longer accepts those dollars as payment, the full impact of inflation will hit home.

Link FSO Perspectives “The Great Inflation, Part 1 The Nature of Money” by Jim Puplava 09/23/2004

via Charles Kirk