Pan fried or cooked with onion and cheese, the German egg noodles called spätzle can have a healthy golden glow. For more than 300 centuries, spätzle has been an alpine culinary standard. The long strands of done are easily cut and divisible and a standard part of a southern German meal.
But a good monetary standard must be universally acceptable. Unfortunately in Germany spätzle is a source of division rather than unity, noted the New York Times’ Nicholas Kulish, who described the recent desecration with spätzle of a bronze statue of artist Kathe Kollwitz in Berlin.
Native Berliners are upset by the increasing numbers of well-off Swabians who have moved to the German capital from more prosperous southern Germany – pushing up prices and pushing out poorer Berliners. Swabia is generally considered the state of Baden-Württemberg and eastern Bavaria in the country’s southwest. “The swabians, for their part, resent their reputation as careptbaggers and the slights they have been forced to endure, with graffiti reading “Schwaben raus,’ or Swabians out,’ a slogan often directly at foreigners, an increasingly common sight,” wrote Kulish.
The statue protest was carried out by group called “Free Swabylon” which claimed to want independence for an area of East Berlin called Prenzlauer Berg that included the home of an outspoken critic of the Swabian invasion.
The critic, Wolfgang Thierse, the vice-president of Germany’s federal parliament, the Bundestag, had said: “I hope the Swabians realize they are now in Berlin. And not in their little towns, with their spring cleaning...They come here because it’s all so colourful and adventurous and lively, but after a while, they want to make it like it is back home. You can’t have both.”
The Berliner Zeitung declared the statue defacers“dough terrorists.” Obviously, a good monetary standard should never be weaponized. Furthermore, gooey spätzle doesn’t travel well in one’s pockets. Eat it while it’s hot. But never in Berlin.
... While the Fed's easy-money policies have not produced many jobs, they have produced a persistent, low rate of inflation that is choking the American middle class. Since the asset purchases began five years ago, the average American family has experienced rising prices and stagnant wages. The resulting decline in living standards explains why voters ranked rising prices nearly tied with unemployment as their top economic concern during the 2012 election.
... It is difficult to interpret [Jeb] Hensarling’s declaration to hold hearings on “the entirety of their hundred year history and what America has looked like since adopting a fiat currency” as anything but an intention to bring the Commission up for a vote. Hensarling promises to process vast amounts of information. The constraints on a committee hearing, and on a committee staff, cannot do such a huge topic justice. As Rep. Kevin Brady put it in his own remarks at Cato, a “brutally bipartisan” Commission — with Hensarling a Commissioner — is called for.
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
The Problem of the Quantity Theory of Money
Rueff’s first work in monetary theory, Theorie des Phenomenes Monetaires (1927), was devoted partly to examining the theories put forward by Irving Fisher in The Purchasing Power of Money (1911). Rueff himself owed a large debt to Fisher, as does all of economics, for ideas like the modern understanding of income and capital. But Fisher is best remembered for his famous Equation of Exchange:
MV + M’V’ = PT
where M is the supply of money, M’ the supply of bank credit, and V and V’ referred to the “velocity of circulation” of money and bank credit, respectively.
"By means of the lawful stamp of convertibility to gold, a near-worthless paper was suffused with a monetary life of its own. It circulated in place of coins and bullion because it was even more convenient, equally divisible, and above all secured by the substance of real money. Moreover, convertible paper and deposit currencies conserved still further the scarce mineral, labor, and capital resources previously invested in the production and circulation of precious bullion or coins. One sees in the evolution of this extraordinary commercial institution of exchange that money became a unique conservator, and the effective mechanism of growth of a civilization born of scarcity."
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This cartoon cleverly presents the tension between the proponents of the classical gold standard and the prairie populists demanding "the free coinage of silver."
Image courtesy of authentichistory.com via BigThink.com
In the mouth of the "silver dog with the golden tail" is a bone, labeled Election.
The 1896 election, which the gold standard...