The First Social Disorder

Social infirmities of the world dollar standard are:

  • it invisibly but powerfully erodes other social standards;
  • it breaks the social compact of equality of opportunity; and
  • it creates a toxic sense of entitlement in the culture.

The first social disorder produced by the infirmity of the world dollar standard:

1.   The world dollar standard invisibly but powerfully erodes other social standards.


The integrity of the currency is a bedrock not only of the economic but of the social order.  President Johnson’s de facto abandonment of the gold standard, followed by President Nixon’s de jure repudiation compromised many social standards.  The upheavals of the late 1960s and the social decay of the 1970s were a direct result.


The social disorders that ensued were predictable and, indeed, predicted.  Jacques Rueff wrote, in The Monetary Sin of the West:  "On 17 March 1968, the international monetary system exploded."  (P. 158) 1968, notoriously, was a year wracked by social unrest:  a dozen riots including Washington, DC, Wilmington, Baltimore, Memphis, Kansas City, and Chicago, culminating in demonstrations at the Democratic National Convention ... and continuing through 1969 and into the 1970s.  The disruption of social harmony was not coincidental.  An astute writer recently observed:


In Rueff's case he put monetary stability at the top of the pyramid when it came to maintaining democracy. As he saw it, currency debasement authored the negative symptoms that destroy faith in government and laws. [From John Tamny’s review of a recent biography of Jacques Rueff.]

We cherish the ideal that we are a government of laws and not of men.  When something of intrinsic value, gold, is abandoned as the guarantee and governor of the value of our money in preference to the exercise of human discretion it destroys “faith in government and laws.”


Next: the second social disorder


Kathleen M. Packard, Publisher
Ralph J. Benko, Editor

In Memoriam
Professor Jacques Rueff

Now Available on Amazon and from The Lehrman Institute

Gold Standard 3-Pack

Three Gold Standard Titles for One Low Price. Only from The Lehrman Institute Store.

Buy from
The Lehrman Institute