In his first term. President Barack Obama has learned the hard way how difficult it is to maintain the country’s confidence. In an interview during that term with the Today Show’s Matt Lauer, the host suggested that he needed to kick some butt to maintain the country’s confidence.
To restore the country’s and the world’s confidence will take some doing – but it might pay to begin with money. “Money is a collective act of the imagination, and it’s a thing which we have invested our credence in, and it works because we do that,” according to John Lanchester, who wrote Whoops! Why Everybody Owes Everybody and No-One Can Pay.
We have ample evidence that the process isn’t working. Time Magazine’s Rana Forooharhas noted: “The fact is, each recovery since 1990 has been weaker, and taken longer, than the one before. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, in all the recessions from World War II to 1990, U.S. employment returned to prerecession levels roughly two quarters after GDP did. In the three recoveries since, though, there have been lengthening lags. At the current rate of job creation, it will take about 33 more months to restore the jobs lost in 2008 and 2009.” In an interview in TIME Magazine last year, former President Jimmy Carter was asked: “How much can a President do to fix the economy?” His response: “The President’s distant third after the Federal Reserve and the Congress – except when we do something like go into Iraq and have an unnecessary war.”
Well, there are things that can be done if the president and Congress want to act – and stop complaining. Not overnight, but they can begin the process that restores order and discipline to the world’s financial system. It is as much in the world’s interest as it is in the interest of the United States.
Back in 1976, Lewis E. Lehrman wrote in Money in the Coming World Order: “United States citizens are, as the creditors of their government and banks, subject to the authority of their duly constituted monetary authority. Whatever United States citizens may think of the national monetary policy, it is nevertheless, the monetary policy of their own legitimate governmental authorities, in whose election they have participated and over whom their collective opinion must have some influence. But the currency area of the dollar incorporates many nations of the world. And it is quite a different matter of political obligation if one is a citizen of another country. As a holder of dollars, a foreigner objects to the debasing of the value of his asset by an extraterritorial monetary authority, the control of which may not be subject to his vote or influence.”
Time for an American commission to restore monetary sanity to the nation...and the world.
Will America start prospering again — as it has not prospered for over a decade? Likely yes. But not without a fight. Now that Jim DeMint has raided Steve Moore from the Wall Street Journal that card might be Heritage Foundation vs. the White House. Could be big.
John Holdren, now Obama’s White House science advisor, 40 years ago termed America “overdeveloped.” Holdren co-authored a 1993 book, Human Ecology: Problems and Solutions, with Anne and Paul Ehrlich reportedly saying that, “A massive campaign must be launched to restore a high-quality environment in North America and to de-develop the United States….” (Emphasis supplied.)
As a soldier of France, no one knew better than Professor Jacques Rueff, the famous French central banker, that World War I had brought to an end the preeminence of the classical European states system and its monetary regime, the classical gold standard. World War I had decimated the flower of European youth; it had destroyed the European continent’s industrial primacy. No less ominously, the historic monetary standard of commercial civilization had collapsed into the ruins occasioned by the Great War. The international gold standard -- the gyroscope of the Industrial Revolution, the common currency of the world trading system, the guarantor of more than one-hundred years of a stable monetary system, the balance wheel of unprecedented economic growth -- all this was brushed aside by the belligerents.
Publisher's Note: Originally released in June/July of 1991, this detailed report discusses Jacques Rueff's economic theories and applies them to modern economic events.
By John D. Mueller
A Rueffian Synthesis
LBMC’s integrated approach to economic forecasting can fairly be called “the Rueffian synthesis.” It would be more modest to call it “a” Rueffian synthesis, since that would allow for other Rueffians who might conceivably quibble about our application of Rueff’s ideas. But it appears that, apart from LBMC, there are no other Rueffians in the world – even in Rueff’s native France – using Rueff’s ideas as a basis for economic prediction.
"Commercial banking grew out of the desire (inspired by the profit motive) to conserve cash (gold) and by means of credit to provide financial elasticity and growth in the commercial process of exchange. That is, all producers (sellers) who desired true money (gold), instead of the short-term secured credit bills – promissory notes of their customers (the buyers) – could, through the mediation of goldsmiths-turned-bankers and bill-merchants-turned-bankers, obtain real money by discounting their bills of exchange for gold with the emerging commercial bankers of early modern Europe. The combined institutions of stable money and secured credit enabled commercial civilization to make of the entire world the only closed economy."
Argentina is floundering. Brazil is struggling. Colombia is growing. Colombia is now the third largest economy in Latin America, according to Capital Economics. The Wall Street Journal’s Darcy Crowe and Taos Turner wrote recently: “After Argentina’s economy dwarfed Colombia’s for decades, economists say the trend reversed in January as the...
One of the themes for the Akan gold counterweights is the electric mudfish.
Image courtesy of AfricanMasks.info
Spark From The Deep by William Turkel has this to say about the fish upon which this counterweight is modeled:
The electric catfish also played an important role in the west African kingdom of Benin, which...