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Guest Post: One Very Strange Use For Silver Coins

Tyler Durden's picture


From Simon Black of Sovereign Man

One Very Strange Use For Silver Coins

“Corruptissima republica plurimae leges. [The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the state.]“ -Tacitus, the Annals ca. AD 69

The nature of what is ‘legal’ has become a truly bizarre concept these days. Developed nations of the west have hundreds of thousands of pages of rules, codes, regulations, laws, decrees, executive orders, etc., many of which are contradictory, archaic, and incomprehensible.

Across these ‘free’ nations, the law is selectively enforced, selectively applied, and completely set aside whenever it pleases the state. As such, even the most harmless of activities (operating a lemonade stand, collecting rainwater, etc.) can be cast as illegal… while the direct theft of people’s wealth through taxes and manipulation of the currency is considered legal.

There is no morality anymore in the law. And even still, whatever few activities may still be considered ‘legal’ are subject to consequences if the enforcers simply decide they don’t like it.

I have a good friend you might like to hear from on the subject; his name is Jake Lawless (an assumed pen name for reasons which will become obvious), and he is a bit of a master when it comes to skirting the line between what’s legal, and what they just don’t like.

In Jake’s words:

I’m a beneficiary of mortgage brokers who believed that housing prices would rise forever. The US real estate crash, plus high gas prices, forced a lot of people to sell their luxury vehicles… and the sudden glut caused prices to fall dramatically.

I didn’t think much about the market for pre-owned luxury cars until one day an engine fire from a cracked turbo manifold in my truck left me stranded. After a day’s search, I found a beautiful car for sale in Nevada, and the asking price was a fraction of the pre-crash peak.

I then contacted the dealer, wired a $500 deposit, and bought a ticket to Las Vegas… all after explaining that I wanted to purchase the vehicle with pre-1965 US quarters.

You may know that, before 1965, many US coins had a very high silver content. As such, they had intrinsic value… real worth, completely independent of “faith” or “because we decree it thus.”

I put roughly 4,000 of these quarters (~$1000 of face value) in a carry-on bag and headed to the airport. The quick math is this– 4,000 pre-1965 quarters contains 715 ounces of silver. At the time, silver was about $35/ounce, so 715 ounces was worth $25,000. In other words, every single quarter had a silver content worth about $6.25.

At the airport, I played my part in security theatre, dutifully removing my shoes after heaving my luggage onto the conveyor. There was a flurry of activity on other side of the x-ray machine. A crack TSA operative stormed up, indignant. “WHOA sir…I have to inspect your luggage.”

Mind you, there is no law against transporting 54 pounds (24.5 kg) of quarters onto an airplane, but that didn’t seem to matter. He just didn’t like it. The TSA guy opened my luggage to find a ziptied cloth bag labelled “$1000?.

“What’s this all about?”

“That’s a bag of quarters. I’m on my way to Vegas,” I said, showing my boarding pass. “I have a system for playing the slots.”

“Wow… will you go through all these?”

“Heck, no. I plan on coming back with even more. I told you, I’ve got a system. I can’t lose!”

“Can I cut the zip tie off and have a look?”

“I’d rather you didn’t, unless you have another zip tie…I don’t want 4000 quarters rolling all over the plane.”

TSA guy demurred. “Oh, ok. Well, good luck. Hope you win big!”

Upon arrival to Las Vegas, the dealer picked me up and drove us directly to a coin shop. I gave him the coins, around $1,000 in face value, and he handed them to the clerk who promptly issued a check for roughly $25,000 made out to the dealer.

It was a legitimate swap– $1,500 worth of legal tender changed hands (my $500 original deposit plus another roughly $1,000 in face value of the pre-1965 quarters), plus value-for-value was bartered between two grown adults.

I drove away with a bill of sale for $1,500, which I then submitted to my state DMV authorities as a basis for them charging me a vehicle tax. Frankly, I think this is highway robbery. Why my state has its hand out every time two individuals conduct a private transaction is beyond me.

But what can anyone do about it? Lobby the state legislature? Rock the vote? Protest… and hope we don’t get arrested, beaten, or shot by those sworn to protect and to serve? Give someone at the DMV a stern lecture about economic freedom?

Trying to change this system is a waste of resources. It’s a race that everyone will lose. Besides, you could spend your whole life lobbying to change one law, and by the time you succeed, they’ll have already passed another 10,000 new, even dumber laws.

Fact is, no one can do anything about this. Just like nobody can prevent Ben Bernanke from dropping money from helicopters. We can’t stop the price rises from monetary inflation, we can’t stop out of control spending (and theft) at all levels of government.

What we CAN do is take sensible steps to protect what’s ours… and then use their own stupid rules against them. It’s a much easier way to win.


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Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:00 | 2856210 BaBaBouy
BaBaBouy's picture


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:02 | 2856219 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

Buy Silver!

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:05 | 2856238 Lohn Jocke
Lohn Jocke's picture

Does anyone else feel like Yukon Cornelius from Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer?


I guess anything is better than dollars.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:12 | 2856269 Dalago
Dalago's picture

Just because its illegal (some fuck face protecting their interests via laws) doesn't necessarily mean its wrong.  Right, honour and Liberty can be illegal.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:51 | 2856394 markmotive
Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:31 | 2856592 Herd Redirectio...
Herd Redirection Committee's picture

Its the same old Sovereign Man article where he tells you not to 'waste your time' with political involvement, or even spreading the truth to those around you.  Yawn.

He already wrote a year ago that "trying to change the system is a terrible investment and a waste of your time".  Honestly, to me, leaving this world  a better place for future generations is the ONLY worthy cause in this life.  Just don't expect Simon Black to agree, he is too busy selling advice.  Since he doesn't have any advice on how to change things for the better he thinks everyone should just "go with the flow".

"If you can't beat 'em, join 'em", ain't that right, Mr Black?  Defeatist much?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:40 | 2856633 ndotken
ndotken's picture

This transaction is illegal..  The dealership accepted a check for $25,000 in payment for the car, but issued a bill of sale for only $1,500.  The dealer will record a loss, thereby reducing its taxable income.  That's called tax evasion.  Or if the dealership records the transaction properly and shows a profit, then the buyer is committing tax evasion by underreporting the amount of the sale.  Either way, the IRS or the state revenue department has a pretty strong case.  Good luck in tax court Mr. Lawless.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:54 | 2856703 pods
pods's picture

It is the same thing the guy in Nevada? got popped for. He paid employees in gold at face value, but used gold content value for another accounting measure.

You cannot do both. 


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:28 | 2856911 greased up deaf guy
greased up deaf guy's picture

color me disappointed. i was sooooooo hoping this was another one of simon's anecdotes about him galavanting through some eastern bloc country telling us how much better things are there. lol

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:45 | 2856991 Thomas
Thomas's picture

Courts have already ruled on this ploy. It's a no go legally.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:44 | 2857248 Dr Benway
Dr Benway's picture

Simon Black is Wesley Snipes' tax advisor. Amazingly poor advice as always.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:00 | 2857321 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

I now know how to turn it all around: Rock the vote!!

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 19:08 | 2857729 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

Them thar full body scanners are there for a reason, and I doubt it is air safety.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:19 | 2857566 Overflow-admin
Overflow-admin's picture

Yeah, people noticed and maybe in some years they will throw out the court if it doesn't change his mind.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 23:45 | 2858308 mark mchugh
mark mchugh's picture

Buzz Killington!

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:43 | 2856980 Dimeboy
Dimeboy's picture

Ontario's DMV checks the VIN against the Blue Book value, and if it's under by much, they ignore the bill of sale price (yes even a Dealers) and charge the tax against the book value.  Otherwise everyone would just charge their buddy a buck on paper.  The only exception is if it's a wreck, and then, why do you need registration if you have ownership and can't drive it.  You have to pay the fee and then claim back the difference with proof that you rehabbed the wreck to driving condition.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:30 | 2857200 ATM
ATM's picture

I don't think so. The dealership accepted $1500 dollars in exchange for the car. They then sold their $1000 of coins for $25,000 in fiat.

The dealer lost on the car but also took a corresponding gain on the sale of the coins. To the dealer it should be a wash. The only loser is the tax man.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:14 | 2857552 Overflow-admin
Overflow-admin's picture

I prefer qualifying this operation as BLOWBACK BITCHEZ! Legal, illegal... it's just WORDS.


I.E. Buy a machine tax free as a reseller (but to use it first!). If you sell it, and your buyer will also resell it, tax free. What's your problem here?


In Argentina, the VAT is 20%, but the gov gives a 5% VAT reduction as incentive to apply it. IS THE VAT 20% OR 15%? IS THIS LEGAL OR NOT? Food for toughts

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:12 | 2856463 CrazyCooter
CrazyCooter's picture

Um, seriously? So, the TSA, if they had three brain cells, would realize quarters could be obtained anywhere from a bank, thus making the story highly suspicious. Think about it, take 1k in cash, go to the casino, get the quarters. This "I have a system" stuff is just nonsense. This would get the average citizen a cavity search.

I seriously doubt I would try that shit with the TSA! Transporting bullion is a HUGE problem, particularly with the state of affairs these days.

Personally, when states start passing gold/silver laws (e.g. Utah), I am getting a safe deposit box in said state and part of my stash goes there with a small funded account to keep the box paid for for 10 years. If I need to cash out, I can visit, do all my business in the bank (if it's legal per state law, the bank will buy/sell bullion I figure for a fee), then use my cash however. No TSA or dealers or transportation of metals involved.



Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:32 | 2856600 fourchan
fourchan's picture

never happened

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:22 | 2856877 Peter Pan
Peter Pan's picture

There is a flaw in this transaction. While the purchase of the vehicle may have been legitimate , the sale to the coin dealer may strictly speaking be subject to capital gains tax.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:05 | 2857097 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

if you "buy" 1k face in coins for 20k in FRnotes, then "sell" them for 30k, there's your 10k in so-called capitular gainship. unless, you know, enough people friend the FreeComCur act.

the better thing to do, obviously, is to lend them to a third party but keep them on the books to use as collateral against a loan which you then lend against real assets and then sell shares of those loans to pension funds while you simultaneously claim ownership of all those assets.

even better thing to do, obviously, is to use the mere idea of them as collateral against a loan, then blah blah blah (see above). then coerce congress to give you a shit ton of money, then threaten the world with starvation and death.

then you can have all the cars you want. paid to you as tribute.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:24 | 2857582 Overflow-admin
Overflow-admin's picture

Awesome resume and context (not CONtext)

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:50 | 2856689 HeliBen
HeliBen's picture

I work for a bullion/jewelry company where we often transport bullion to and from locations by plane through TSA, it is no big deal.

Most people do not even know what they are looking at, and think bullion is some sort of soup.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:42 | 2856975 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

I have taken gold out of the USA twice before.  Once the actual value (Gold Eagles) was over $10,000, so I had to fill out the Customs Form.  Note!  The actual value of the gold, NOT the legal tender value ($50 each).  I had to declare that I was taking the gold out (just as I would have had it been cash).

The other time I took out a much smaller amount, under $10,000, so did not declare it.  In neither case did TSA even blink.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:34 | 2857594 akak
akak's picture

DoChen, I am not denying what you did or were told to do, but if any US Customs agent told you that you had to declare the MARKET VALUE of your gold coins, not their face value, they were flat-out wrong.  US Customs, on their very own website (and in information I have read elsewhere), state in no uncertain terms that gold bullion is NOT a monetary asset, and does NOT need to be declared upon leaving the USA, except in cases where the face value of legal tender coins were to exceed $10,000 (which would be a HUGE amount of gold!).

As I have stated elsewhere, people traveling with expensive jewelry, or rare artifacts, or artwork, do NOT need to declare those items either, so it would make no sense on the face of it to have to declare the market value of your gold either.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:51 | 2857030 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

had to read the article twice to find the "very strange use for silver coins"

it's here: 

"I gave him the coins, around $1,000 [of silver] in face value, and he handed them to the clerk who promptly issued a check for roughly $25,000 [in FR notes] made out to the dealer."

that's a strange use for silver! he could have bought a car instead.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:40 | 2856636 Get the Borrow
Get the Borrow's picture

Whoa somebody owes capital gains tax on this transaction...Dealer maybe should 1099 quarter doofus?  Minus 500?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:30 | 2856923 Peter Pan
Peter Pan's picture

Sorry, just saw your comment.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:16 | 2856284 IndicaTive
IndicaTive's picture

Actually, that's my Holiday avatar. You'll see it on Thanksgiving....through the New Year.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:27 | 2856330 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

 I like this financial innovation stuff, but what did he achieve except saving some sales tax, and jerking the chain of the TSA (always fun)?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:02 | 2856432 mkhs
mkhs's picture

California registration is based on purchase price.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:11 | 2856467 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

How much in total fees?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:13 | 2856472 tickhound
tickhound's picture

...saving some sales tax, gifting fewer $ to government, jerking the inflationary monetary chain = one small step for man...

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:13 | 2856475 Mad Mohel
Mad Mohel's picture

He did a great job of proving what's real money and what's on it's way to 0.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:39 | 2856627 dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

yeah, did he wire $500 in silver too?





Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:51 | 2856391 markmotive
markmotive's picture

Some are making a case for $960 silver?!? Not sure if this is realistic.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:01 | 2856428 Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

Tell us why not?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:14 | 2856478 jmcadg
jmcadg's picture

Yeah, that's the old case. The new case is $4000 upwards. Keep up.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:06 | 2856240 redpill
redpill's picture

Free Bernard von NotHaus!

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:59 | 2856417 The Shootist
The Shootist's picture

Don't you know he's a terrorist?! That guy should go to Gitmo with all the US troops who shoot at Afghanis trying to kill them.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:15 | 2856483 e_goldstein
e_goldstein's picture

Last I read, he is free. Our benevolent masters thought that bankrupting him and shutting down his business was enough punishment.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:22 | 2856848 redpill
redpill's picture

He used to have a blog with updates, but I think it got shut down due to some bogus court order.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:13 | 2856820 Alpo for Granny
Alpo for Granny's picture

Free Jon Corz...oh..wait.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:18 | 2857561 ultraticum
ultraticum's picture

Plus on the comment - and the Alpo handle sums up how we should treat Mittens Romney's entire constituency perfectly.  Thank you for brightening my day.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:58 | 2856415 A Lunatic
A Lunatic's picture

And then waste it on a luxury car...........

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:03 | 2856221 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

Taxation is not theft. Since it happens with either use of force, or implied threatening use of force and/or harrasment towards unwilling subjects, it is robbery.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:08 | 2856251 JLee2027
JLee2027's picture

Damn! I missed your last sentence and almost gave you a down arrow. Brilliant post.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:15 | 2856282 redpill
redpill's picture

Good point, but imho it's worse than that.  Money is a exchangable-representation of our labor over time, so when that gets seized by force it's not just robbery, it's enslavement.  In the end, people are required to labor for the government without compensation and without choice, under threat of force.

It's one more supporting argument for the repeal of the 16th amendment and replacing the income tax with a simple point-of-sale tax on new retail goods and services only.  While I detest federal taxation in all its forms, this would at least put choice into the hands of the payer, a decision for how/when they will pay tax, and a transparent communication of exactly how much that tax truly is.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:29 | 2856423 Dalago
Dalago's picture

And EVERYone will pay into the system.  Illegals and legals, on the table and under the table incomes.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:06 | 2856241 CH1
CH1's picture

Bitcoin: Way more mobile than bags of silver.

(But I do love silver.)

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:10 | 2856264 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Kindly explain the difference between bitcoin and any scrip that has ever existed.  After reading every wiki and techy analysis, I still don't see the point to it.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:17 | 2856290 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

"Bitcoin" can only be produced in limited amounts.  The numbers required to create a Bitcoin token are rare, and the "mining" system prevents duplication of the same token by someone else.

The basic difference is: you can create any fiat or scrip with no limitations. 

Bitcoin is limited by total computer power devoted to "mining."

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:25 | 2856322 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Is the digital signature serialized?  Isn't "total computer power" a function of time, and ultimately speculative?


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:42 | 2856364 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

There's some pretty arcane math voodoo involved, but the essence of the identification of "individual" Bitcoins has to do with timestamping.

"Total computer power" is virtually guaranteed to increase over time, BUT the frequency of valid Bitcoin "relationships" decreases as the numbers become greater. As an example, think of prime numbers.  From 0 to 10 there are 4 primes, but from 90-100 there's only 1, and when the numbers have lots of digits, they're even rarer.

Bitcoin tokens are like that.  There's no limit to the number of them which can ultimately be created, but calculating the "next one" at some point will eventually take more time than it'll take for the sun to go red giant.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:00 | 2856422 The Shootist
The Shootist's picture

Mike Maloney -"If you can't hold it, you don't own it."

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:42 | 2856641 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

No kidding.  Numbers aren't even really real.  Have you been able to pick up "seven" and stuff it in your pocket?

Pshaw.  People worry too much about total nonsense.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:43 | 2856650 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

You can't hold a thumby?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:37 | 2856951 Biosci
Biosci's picture

The same way I hold an ATM card?  Sure.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:01 | 2857043 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

But, assuming all risks being equal, is your ATM card ultimately subject to the whims of human fallibility, or an independent mathematical certainty?

 I think that I get the valid point made by the fossickers (h/t Peter B) but I find the inherent decentralisation of bitcoin interesting.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 20:55 | 2857979 clymer
clymer's picture


Sorry, can't get behind bitcoin. I work with smart people. At a large network security co.

As our boy Donnie says, "There are known knowns; there are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns; that is to say there are things that, we now know we don't know. But there are also unknown unknowns – there are things we do not know we don't know."



Nothing is infallible 


Stickin with PM's

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 23:25 | 2858189 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

Heh, don't blame you in the least. The keyiest line in my comment was "assuming all risks being equal" (between bank bitzandbytes and bitcoin bitzandbytes)...quoted this one before, but when I figure it suits I'm doing it again,

"She said there is something about you that really reminds me of money; she was the kind of girl that could say things that weren't that funny. I said, "What does that mean I 'really remind you of money'?" She said, "Who am I to blow against the wind." I know what I know, I'll say what I've said. We come and we go; that's a thing I keep in the back of my head." -P.Simon

But any human operated/conceived system is fallible, right right right. PM's are solid; agree absolutely too.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:54 | 2857048 CH1
CH1's picture

You guys don't want to know.

Look, I'm not against PMs - I'm hugely in favor or holding physical. But Bitcoin IS the future, or at least a major part of it.

Be reflexive all you like, but this is something every PM holder should be getting into, right now.

But, feel free to flame away... just like your friends flamed you for holding PMs.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:36 | 2857225 Doña K
Doña K's picture

What if there is no electricity to power your computer?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:37 | 2857431 CH1
CH1's picture

Then I have silver to buy gas and a generator.I said I love PMs.

No one here ever said that BTC was the ultimate tool for all occasions.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:45 | 2856659 exi1ed0ne
exi1ed0ne's picture

Bitcoins are created each time a user discovers a new block. The rate of block creation is approximately constant over time: 6 per hour. The number of Bitcoins generated per block is set to decrease geometrically, with a 50% reduction every 4 years. The result is that the number of Bitcoins in existence will never exceed 21 million. This algorithm was chosen because it approximates the rate at which commodities like gold are mined.

Bitcoins has some pretty interesting features that make it one of the better digital currencies out there, and a fascinating experiment in decentralized currency to boot. Worth the time to research if you are interested in alternative monetary mechanics. It uses some of the same tools as digital encryption, which in turn is an attempt to solve the age old question of how to trust an anonymous entity.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:39 | 2856949 Acet
Acet's picture

I'm sorry but your math is wrong. The 50% reduction in Bitcoins per-block every 4 years would not be able to limit the number of bitcoins to 21 million simply because there can be an arbitrary number of computers mining Bitcoins at any one time.

The 4 years value is either a bald-face lie from the Wiki makers or way out of date: if you dig down in the information on that Wiki you'll find that in fact the algorithm is such that the number of Bitcoins per-block halves every 210.000 blocks (here:

It seems a lot until you think that 210.000 PCs can mine enough blocks in 6 hours to halve the number of bitcoins per-block once. After one week, the number of Bitcoins per-block will be a 1/2.684.354.586 th of the initial.

And here lies the problem of Bitcoin: something like this is what has happened, people went crazy with clusters of machines mining and mining programs that run on GPUs in addition to CPUs and I believe even mning using things like Amazon EC with the result that by now most of the Bitcoins that could ever exist have already been mined.

This is not at all like Gold, where first mover advantage (of mining easilly accessible veins) happened thousands of years ago. In the BitCoin universe, the difference in "mining" rates equivalent to many milenia in Gold has been compressed into a couple years.

This means barelly 3 or 4 years ago first movers into BitCoin managed to get their hands in huge amounts of BitCoins using relativelly small amounts of computing power. These people are now trying to sell those BitCoins for a lot of (fiat) money to any sucker they can find, which is why you see quite a lot of bullshit around BitCoins.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:01 | 2856732 Cursive
Cursive's picture


Bitcoin tokens are like that.  There's no limit to the number of them which can ultimately be created,

Bullshit.  It's capped at 21 million.  Read the official website.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:08 | 2856787 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

They're never going to hit the cap anyway, but I stand corrected.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:09 | 2856800 lemonobrien
lemonobrien's picture

i program, i know its shit; and i program hardcore, like c, embedded shit with encryption; etc.

Sun, 10/14/2012 - 23:42 | 2889147 metastar
metastar's picture

Agree. I'm in the field too and trust neither bit coin or electronic voting. There's too much at stake and it's too easy to game the system.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:31 | 2856593 Nage42
Nage42's picture

It's worth remembering that the USSA gub'mint has installed many kill-switches within the very fabric of the Internet incase the Arabian Spring movement comes to the states... it's something to think about if you're worried about SHtF scenario, cause you shouldn't expect the Internet to be up and running perfectly to do your bitcoin transacts.

I'm just saying.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:45 | 2856656 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

...can you say 'skip talk'?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:40 | 2857441 CH1
CH1's picture

You guys are trying too hard, looking for any flaw to exclude BTC from viability.Why do you need it to fail? Wouldn't it be nice to have a new tool?

And, FWIW, you'll probably be able to transfer BTC from phone-to-phone soon.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:55 | 2856706 Cursive
Cursive's picture


How does bitcoin account for population growth?  Although we are experincing BernanQE-induced inflation at the moment, any solution must be workable to prevent inflation or deflation.  If the money supply does not keep up with population growth, you have deflation.  There's also the problem with bitcoin "mining" favoring people with high-powered GPU's.  I don't think the world of tomorrow will be much better if we let a bunch of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs clones and gamers control the money supply.  Plus, it's not physical.  Even after some sense of normalcy and power has been restored, have you ever been in an area after a hurricane or earthquake?  Not exactly friendly to payment methods that rely on modern conveniences.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:03 | 2857086 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

It is what it is, Cursive.  It doesn't have to "account" for anything.  It's a VIRTUAL COMMODITY that can be traded like any other.  It's not a central-bank produced "currency."  It's not "legal tender."  It's not physical.

I dunno what the big deal is, as I've said several times in the past, I couldn't care less what people think of Bitcoin, I just think it's interesting enough to describe because the concept seems to elude most posters here. 

I don't even HAVE any!  I've used it for a few transactions in the past, though, and it made me curious enough to learn about it.

I don't think anyone's going to try to tell you Bitcoin is going to save the world.  It's just a competing medium which can be used for trade.  Ron Paul must love it.  In prison, they use cigarettes.

How do cigarettes account for increasing numbers of prisoners?  How does the prison economy suffer from permitting private manufacturers to control their money supply?  How can your stockpile of cigarettes buy you important necessities when you're in a place with no smokers?

Are these supposed to sound like serious questions?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:26 | 2856325 Dr. No
Dr. No's picture

Its all a confidence game if the medium of exchange has no intrinsic value.  I guess gold would fall into this as well, since there is limited everyday utility.  But since gold has held value for over 3000 years, the likelyhood of people keeping confidence in gold is high.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:38 | 2856356 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Feels like a con game to me, Dr. No.  If your account details are contained in a code, and if the code is in any way derived by cypher, then the code could be unlocked by another cypher.  Anything done can be undone.  And if the total amount of cyphers is limited by "computing power" - and I don't know if that means all power in existence today, estimated to the near future, or by a single workstation in the Bitcoin federal reserve mineshaft - you are simply creating a mathematically constructed set of rules and limitations based on calculations and estimates, which is precisely what the Federal Reserve does now.  Bitcoin just seems like a high-falutin' elaboration of what all fiat issuers do already. 

Gold's utility is that it is physical.  It is not a construct, thus it can neither be proven nor disproven.  It is or it isn't.  You have it or you don't.  It's supply is naturally limited and guess what, it's supply on earth is only tangentially related to man's ability to mine it.  That's where the time comes in, it's not an "I dunno, because the greeks liked it" thing at all.  It's the fact that there is a huge mass of physically inert supply sitting above ground, that can be counted by actual hands. 

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:43 | 2856368 Dr. No
Dr. No's picture

It just comes down to what we humans choose to put value on.  Historically, we valued gold for all the reasons you listed.  But say we lived in a zombie world, 357 cartridges would be a great medium of exchange, probably better than gold.  Like cancer sticks were in the old Bogart POW movies.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:15 | 2856484 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Yes, and to a man dying of thirst, water is priceless.  I don't accept the widening of foul lines because it makes the game meaningless.  All fields that stretch to infinity make the concepts of winning and losing superfluous.

Bullets and water CAN BE currency, anything can be a medium of exchange.  Valuation is NOT the whim of the individual or even the collective, valuation is the agreement of two parties.  It may take on the quality of a "whim of the collective" if many exchanges value it similarly.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:48 | 2856675 Herd Redirectio...
Herd Redirection Committee's picture

Theres a lot of reasons gold is valuable.  One, it is easy to transport.  Two, it is easy to hide.  Three, it looks REALLY good.  Think of all the royal palaces that are decorated with gold leaf.  Think about why crowns used to be made of gold, and kings used to wear them in public.  If worse comes to worse, and gold is supposedly 'worthless' then I'm going to have myself a really nice crown and set of teeth made.   :)

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:47 | 2856379 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

It's a VIRTUAL commodity.  Human computer technology can only "unearth" some small percentage of the total number of Bitcoins that exist "in the universe."

If we meet space aliens with better computers, they could copy the mining software and blow the Earthlings out of the water, I guess.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:09 | 2856455 RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

A few well-placed sun spots and bitcoin is toast.  If you can't trade it on a fried internet, it might as well not exist.  That's the only thing that keeps me from investigating it further.  Same with all the digital "money" on the books of the Fed and banks.  The history of bitcoin has shown that it's subject to hackers.  Of course, someone could break in and steal all your silver too.  Everything has its pitfalls.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:10 | 2856466 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Blunderdog, I up arrowed you because now I understand Bitcoin as the academic exercise that it is.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:15 | 2856488 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

I have no interest in convincing people to USE Bitcoin, I couldn't care less.  I just think folks should probably have some understanding of what it IS before passing judgement.  (As with most things.) 

Rocky's point is the best demolition of the concept I've ever heard.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:32 | 2856928 MillionDollarBoner_
MillionDollarBoner_'s picture

< debate endlessly about the merits of BitCoin

< get a life/get laid 

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:17 | 2857157 CH1
CH1's picture

Who's debating? I'm saying flat-out that this is the future. Believe what you like, but you are doing precisely what the "barbarous relic" crowd does, albeit against a different target.

And as for getting laid... you very clearly don't know me.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:42 | 2857244 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

(Sounds like Boner's not getting enough.)

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:15 | 2856486 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

From Wiki:  No independent dispute resolution.


Think I'll stick with my new friend, the Nigerian Finance Minister.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:33 | 2856604 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

Anything that can be done can be undone?  Know much about crypto hashes, then do you?

Lossy compression?

Face it, even gold mainly has value ONLY because people believe it does.  It is for sure, unlikely that will change very quickly - but to my cats and trees, it's just another chunk 'o stuff.  Intrinisic value is in the eye of the beholder for most things.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:27 | 2857406 Esso
Esso's picture

From "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" [1948]

Howard: Say, answer me this one, will you? Why is gold worth some twenty bucks an ounce?
Flophouse Bum: I don't know. Because it's scarce.
Howard: A thousand men, say, go searchin' for gold. After six months, one of them's lucky: one out of a thousand. His find represents not only his own labor, but that of nine hundred and ninety-nine others to boot. That's six thousand months, five hundred years, scramblin' over a mountain, goin' hungry and thirsty. An ounce of gold, mister, is worth what it is because of the human labor that went into the findin' and the gettin' of it.
Flophouse Bum: I never thought of it just like that.
Howard: Well, there's no other explanation, mister. Gold itself ain't good for nothing except making jewelry with and gold teeth.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:19 | 2856508 gaoptimize
gaoptimize's picture

I am sometimes surprised that the REAL intrinsic value of PMs isn't acknowledged or spoken of: The allure to women, sex, and the resulting children. I'm not saying PMs have been around long enough to make it a genetic natural instinct, but after a millenum of the rise and fall of fiat-based empires, it probably has become an unconscious racial memory to them.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:32 | 2856597 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

There's not really such a thing as a "real intrinsic value."  That's one of the critical Austrian realizations.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:50 | 2856688 Herd Redirectio...
Herd Redirection Committee's picture

Ta da...  Not only women, but Saudis, Chinese, Indians, gnomes in Switzerland, all value gold. 

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:52 | 2856718 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

In the case of mediums of exchange "real intrinsic value" is derived from the work put into procuring them. Paper promises represent work that may or may not have been done, or may or may not be done in the future, based on the issuers ability to force someone to do it; with real money it is apparent that the work has already been done by someone.

I admit that this definition assumes that human effort, or 'work', is something of value.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:26 | 2856899 Crisismode
Crisismode's picture

Water (and Food) have "real intrinsic value".


If you don't have them, you die. Period.



Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:06 | 2857099 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Amazingly, some people are not opposed to dying.

You may not agree with the Austrians, but personally, I think they got this right.  "Value" is *always* a relative measure and varies from one individual to another.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:03 | 2857328 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

But practically anyone can recognize the fundamental difference between the inherent value of a bird in the hand vs. two in the bush. If someone owed them a bird, anyway.


Maybe I'm misinterpreting something here though, as my Austrian is non existent.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:56 | 2857490 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

If I had a bird in my hand, I'd probably let it go for free, but if I saw two in the bush, I wouldn't have to try to ascertain their value.

Sooo....that must mean the "intrinsic value" of [bird in hand] and [two birds in the bush] are *equal* for a guy like me. could be the discussion just gets too silly to continue at a certain point.

This is the foundation for economics, though, which is really big and important.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 18:45 | 2857542 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

Yeah, let's not turn this into a Bob Pirsig novel.

But there is more to it than 'there is no accounting for some people's tastes' nuances.

As a rule most will agree that effort intrinsically adds value.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 19:51 | 2857850 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Yes, but it has to be "effort" applied to something important to the recipient.  I don't like Van Gogh, for example.  In a post-apocalyptic zombie-world, I wouldn't trade my silver, beans, or bullets for Starry Night, but I might consider a trade for Monet's Water Lilies.

I do think that, in general, transaction-tokens will "hold value" better when they represent "dead labor."  (Fiat doesn't meet that criterion.)  That's because even when the token isn't something of personal importance, you're more likely to find someone else out there who prizes the past effort required to create it--the previously expended energy is "valued" by anyone who might engage in the same activity.  (Dutch tulips?)

Alas, by the time you're thinking about this stuff at such a high level of abstraction, you're a philosopher, and no one really wants to listen to you anymore.  Ask a 3rd grader what money is and you'll get a pretty good answer: it's the stuff you use to buy things.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:37 | 2856352 Dr. No
Dr. No's picture

I do like Bitcoin since it represents an attempt by the free market to use a non-governement sanctioned medium of exchange.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:40 | 2856360 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

+1 but ...

I don't like Bitcoin because it makes non-government sanctioned mediums look ridiculous.  It is Ross Perot in a Ron Paul discussion.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:46 | 2856378 Dr. No
Dr. No's picture

I agree.  I like the concept, but I have yet to make a Bitcoin transaction.  I attempted to "mine" coins with my GPU but when I found there was nothing of interest I could buy with them, I turned off my computer.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:20 | 2856511 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

You keep showing me more on this!  So, if one had a lot of computing power, like Google Inc., POOF, they would suddenly have a greater potential ability to mine. 

This is sort of like valuing mining companies based on how many steam shovels they own, and the skill of their pilots.

This does not sound like voodoo math. 

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:35 | 2856615 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

It's basically the same as extraction of any "real" commodity. 

A guy with a shovel can't compete with BHP Billiton's army of men and fleet of machines, either.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:53 | 2856700 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

It's a contextual model.  In that, and only in that, Bitcoin is valuable.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:06 | 2857103 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Yep, same as money.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:25 | 2857170 CH1
CH1's picture

I have yet to make a Bitcoin transaction.

Here, I'll make it easy for you:

Go to, enter your zip code, then meet your local dealer and make the exchange.

Easy as going to the corner store.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:05 | 2856757 Drachma
Drachma's picture

Whenever I hear "Bitcoin" I'm reminded somehow of the scene from jaws:

Quint: Anti-shark cage? You go inside the cage?

Hooper: [nodding with a knowing smile]

Quint: Cage goes in the water. You go in the water. Shark's in the water. Our shark...[singing] Farewell and adieu to you fair Spanish lady...

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:06 | 2856243 Silver Bug
Silver Bug's picture

Great story. Love it. Good work.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:26 | 2856328 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture

OT: but the last two days of WTI/Brent trading have been more psychotic than usual.  

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:01 | 2856213 CPL
CPL's picture

Shadow boxing in a mirror pops into mind.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:01 | 2856214 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

Nice idea.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:04 | 2856236 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture



Would be interesting should a clever chemist disover these coins to no be 100% gold.

sounds very akin to "we are from the government and we are here to help you".

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:14 | 2856257 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture



Would one raise more suspicion carrying about 14 of these ($700 face value), or 4,000 quarters? 

54 pounds in a big sack versus 14 ounces of pocket change? 

Cannot one still carry up to $10,000 (face value) of US currency out of the country without reporting it?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:19 | 2856299 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

That is correct, but if the TSA finds even a few thousand (or less) in your possession, you're likely to get the Special Treatment.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:37 | 2856344 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture



I have had the TSA Special Treatment before, and frankly I found it lacking.  The TSA agents seemed to me like the prison guards in Idiocracy.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:42 | 2856361 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture


ACLU Sues TSA for Unlawful Detention of Ron Paul's Campaign for Liberty Treasurer

$4,700, and he wasn't even trying to leave the country with it.

I'm guessing the guy wouldn't describe that as "lacking" but who knows;)

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:04 | 2856438 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture



If you don't want to be "found lacking" by the TSA, then get one of these

I would be suprised if after the Underwear Bomber and Shoe Bomber we don't soon hear of the Giant Purple Strap On Bomber.  

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:10 | 2856458 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

Hahaha. Or the cucumber bomber.


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:01 | 2856430 General Decline
General Decline's picture

One time when I got theTSA treatment, a ghetto hood rat agent yelled out "Hi General Decline" ( he actually used my real name, though) in a loud and sarcastic manner as i was walking around the body scanner for a patdown Still not sure how he knew my name at that point in the interogation. Perhaps the RFID chip in my drivers license? The other agent was a jar head looking Gestapo type who, when searching my gear, found a copy of New American magazine in my posesion. (dont read it anymore largely because they never spoke a word about the fraud of 911) He commented that he read that magazine too as he eye raped me. Not sure I believed him, though. Normally I haven't found the TSA to be too unpleasant but thes two guys really creeped me out.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:11 | 2856469 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

By far the worst ones I've encountered were foreign employees of the TSA working in foreign airports at gates for flights departing to the U.S.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:20 | 2856513 General Decline
General Decline's picture

I got a roll of electrical tape confiscated in Johanasburg as I was boarding the non-stop to Atlanta. She said "you can't bring tape on an airplane". WTF?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:12 | 2856470 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

When someone calls you by name, I strongly recommend a close introduction, a firm handshake, and learning HIS name, too.

Demons can only be bound and controlled by those who know their true names.  Don't let them put you at a disadvantage.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:17 | 2856498 General Decline
General Decline's picture

Great advice. Thought about that after the fact. Was caught off guard. Will do next time.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:01 | 2856427 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

Carry a small sack of silver half dollars and put the gold coins in the center of the sack. 


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:08 | 2856254 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

Wow, thanks! I'm gonna print up a whole buch of those right now! I'm rich!

Thanks for the template!

Uh, when will you post the reverse?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:18 | 2856298 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Benny? Is that you?

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:23 | 2856308 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

damn. busted.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:46 | 2856377 machineh
machineh's picture

First we killed all the bison.

Then we made a gold coin to memorialize them.


Government ...


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:55 | 2856404 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture



...and if that wasn't enough, we refer to the coins as buffalos instead of bison.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:09 | 2856259 ziggy59
ziggy59's picture

Lately, i have been wondering about that "written" guarantee.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:17 | 2856291 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

FYI: The current price at the link (the US Mint) is $2060 each. You can get them at today for $1861. Gainesville Coins is a great source for precious metal coins and bars.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:20 | 2856300 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Yes they are. And they are local to me, easy pickup...

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:36 | 2856340 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

Glad you mention that. I've wondered for a while now if they really won't take cash as they say at their site...maybe you know, and could let me know;)

I started to post that you can get a promo code for a shipping discount by visiting the dealers page at but I just went there and the site is infected with an Exploit virus, so don't. I checked a few of my orders and receipts and the code is not listed, just says "COUPON". But if you call them I'm guessing they'll probably give you the code.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 19:41 | 2857829 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Not sure about cash for an online order but they have some items in the showroom which I bought for cash.  I would guess that they would hold an order on the card and take cash at pickup, effectively giving you a rebate. They have a security guard on-site so even large orders should not be a problem. I've turned a 1/2 dozen friends on to them and no complaints.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:05 | 2856770 Dr. Gonzo
Dr. Gonzo's picture

Great price on Perth silver coins too however that place gets you on the shipping and money wire costs. Almost cheaper going through APMEX depending on what you want and if you prefer to pay with personal check and wait. A 10k order with APMEX is free shipping too.  

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:55 | 2856405 DosZap
DosZap's picture

There is no morality anymore in the law


Yes there is, just not by those that enforce it, and are above it.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 13:55 | 2856406 DosZap
DosZap's picture


Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:09 | 2856462 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Well, your friend, broke two laws, and is bitching about both.He is lucky he did not get caught.

By LAW he had to declare the SPOT value of the quarters, and by LAW he should have paid tax on 25k car deal, not $1,500.00.

Try and get on an airplane with 10,$50.00 FV Eagles,w/out declaring full Spot and you will have them confiscated,never returned, and likely be charged with a fed crime.YOU must declare fair value.

They know the law, and you had best also.

The reason the $50.00 is on a 1oz Gold coin, is so they can seize it, and take it for that $50.00.Or, the $42.xx they have had it officially priced at for years.

There is not a statute stopping you from taking 50oz of bullion out on a plane, but you had better fill out the paperwork, if you want to keep it.Decalring the value at the time...............SPOT.

A member here let me in on this, I figured they would limit you on the amount of coins..............not so.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:15 | 2856822 Vlad Tepid
Vlad Tepid's picture

Last time I checked you don't have to declare anything moneywise when traveling within the 50 states.  You could bring a suitcare full of 24K buffaloes or $100 bills or Garbage Pail Kids cards and waltz right through...there's no interior customs...unless I missed the memo.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:10 | 2857358 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

You're correct on that. Only if you're leaving the US and it's possessions and territories. I thought it was clear from the context he was referring to foreign travel (maybe I assumed this was common knowledge. Maybe it's not.)

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 15:15 | 2856830 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

Good post, and I think you're "SPOT" on. Sorry for the pun. I believe the law states you must declare if the "value" of "cash or cash equivalents" exceeds $10,000, and years ago when I researched it I found that "cash equivalent" meant almost any highly liquid thing, like stocks, bonds, travelers checks, and probably even bullion.

Not a lawyer though, and never tried to carry bullion on a plane. I think the wise thing to do is not carry anything you're not willing to declare, and to not carry anything even if you declare it, if it might raise eyebrows ( a few thousand in cash could do that) unless for some reason you have to. Can't imagine why anyone would "have" to except for reasons that would make air travel unwise anyway.

Typically when I travel o/s I just carry a debit card and ask my bank if they have an associate bank in the area I'll be traveling in, so the ATM fees are low when I get there, and also to let them know to note my travels on my account so their security doesn't block transactions. I'm no fan of BofA but I've never found a bank that had so many o/s associate banks as BofA, or fees as low. This method (US debit card to be used at foreign ATMs) is a lot cheaper than using foreign exchange offices o/s.

BTW, AAA is the usual place to get an Intl D.L, not that you need one much these days except in areas where English is not commonly spoken, but AAA will try to tell you every time, that "there is no markup on their fx" (good to have a little cash of the area you'll be going to when you arrive.) THEY LIE. They mark it up about 11% every time, which is higher than most airport kiosks. Most people don't know the fx rate and fall for it.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 16:34 | 2857213 Vlad Tepid
Vlad Tepid's picture

That's when you're going overseas.  There was no talk of that here.  This isn't Soviet "Papers please" Russia (yet) and in the land of the free, you can still carry any amount of cash with you anywhere you want.  It doesn't mean you might not get hassled (I never have been) but you have what's left of the law on your side.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:13 | 2857236 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

"There was no talk of that here."

Yes, there was. Just sayin'.

edit: I admit I assumed that he was referring to international travel since "declaring" only applies then and not on domestic flights. That may not be known to everyone so thanks for clarifying. +1

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 14:17 | 2856476 Jam Akin
Jam Akin's picture

Someone I know carried 30 of these beauties (1OZ Buffalos) in the original mint packaging thru the TSA security checkpoint in Newark not long ago.  No questions asked.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:15 | 2857246 NewWorldOrange
NewWorldOrange's picture

If he was traveling to a foreign territory, then either he declared them beforehand, or the agent didn't give a shit that day. Most any TSA or customs agent who saw them and knew what they were and was "doing his job" would have confiscated his gold if he hadn't already declared it before the checkpoint, he would never gotten it back, and he would have been detained and quite possibly charged with a felony. Just sayin'. I greened you BTW, because I don't doubt you, and the TSA is a bunch of morons so it happens.

Thu, 10/04/2012 - 17:35 | 2857397 akak
akak's picture

The US Customs Agency, on their OWN website, clearly state that gold bullion is a "non-monetary" asset, as defined by the US government, and as such does NOT need to be declared when leaving the country, with the exception of legal tender coins whose total face value is greater than US $10,000 (or the equivalent).  This is unambiguously stated.

It is simply not true that one has to declare non-monetary assets whose worth is greater than $10,000 to US Customs, even when traveling overseas.  I happen to know a rather wealthy woman who has routinely traveled to and from the USA with jewelry worth FAR in excess of $10,000, and she has neither had to declare it to Customs, nor has ever had any of it confiscated.  As far as US Customs is concerned, gold bullion is effectively just so much jewelry.

Now, I am NOT saying that there might not be OTHER regulations regarding or prohibiting the export of precious metals from the USA, but according to US Customs, their regulations are not among them.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!