• Sprott Money
    05/05/2016 - 06:02
    Why is a Deutsche Bank mouthpiece suggesting “negative retail deposit rates or perhaps wealth taxes”? The answer is to (supposedly) stimulate our economies.

Guest Post: Gold And Triffin's Dilemma

Tyler Durden's picture




 

Submitted by Joe Yasinksi and Dan Flynn of GBI,

Have you seen Robert Triffin?

"It was the outcome of an unbelievable collective mistake, which, when people become aware of it, will be viewed by history as an object of astonishment and scandal"
-Jaques Reuff 1972

The obscure Belgian economist Robert Triffin is not only very dead he also isn't exactly a household name, yet. Triffin, who died in 1993 studied at Harvard, taught at Yale, worked at the Federal Reserve, the IMF, and was a key contributor to the formation of the European monetary system. Triffin exposed serious flaws in the Bretton Woods monetary system and perfectly predicted it's inevitable demise yet his work remains largely ignored and unstudied by today's mainstream economists. This "flaw" became known as the Triffin dilemma, and many believe Triffin's dilemma has as serious implications today as it did 50 years ago. In short, Triffin proposed that when one nations currency also becomes the worlds reserve asset, eventually domestic and international monetary objectives diverge. Have you ever wondered how it's possible that the USA has run a trade deficit for 37 consecutive years? Have you ever considered the consequences on the value of your Dollar denominated assets if it eventually becomes an unacceptable form of payment to our trading partners? Thankfully for those of us trying to navigate the current financial morass, Robert Triffin did.

Prior to the 1944 Bretton Woods agreement, central banks used gold as the asset to back their currencies. By the end of World War II, the United States had established itself as the world's creditor and largest holders of gold. Under the 1944 Bretton Woods agreement, the US Dollar was fully backed by gold at a fixed value of 1/35th an ounce per dollar, and foreign Central Banks could use US Dollar assets as reserves backing their currency, in lieu of gold. This agreement avoided the inevitable deflationary pressure a return to pre-war gold/currency ratios would have forced just as Europe was beginning to rebuild, and allowed US debt held abroad to be used as an asset by central banks against their local currencies.

In the 1960's Triffin observed that there existed an excess of dollars offshore relative to the gold available to tender at the set $35 price. He hypothesized that given foreign central bank demand for dollars as reserves, the trend of a growing and continuing glut of dollars was going to continue unabated. It would continue until the excess reserves would so clearly be many multiples of the gold available to satisfy them that enough countries would start tendering dollars for gold and eventually the entire scheme would collapse. Triffin went as far as congress in 1960 to testify that the system as currently devised could not possibly maintain both liquidity and a stable value in the dollar and eventually, the agreement would prove unsustainable. As Triffin predicted, on August 15, 1971 the United States closed the gold window as Richard Nixon came on national television and defaulted on US gold obligations while national gold reserves drained from over 20,000 tons to 8,133 tons. Up until Nixons actions, foreign sovereigns tendered their dollars for gold at an increasing pace. On that day, nations that were holding US dollars because they were "as good as gold" were left with paper promises and nothing more.

At that time, the world was at a crossroads. Would foreign governments and trade partners continue to accept fully fiat US Dollars? The alternative was a deflationary return to a hard (pre-Bretton Woods) gold standard. It can be argued that structural support was granted to the dollar given the fact that with cheap oil, the US economy was expanding at a pace far more rapid than the growth in US government debt. They rationalized that US dollar was still a claim on future growth and production and the rest of the world was lifting it's standard of living as well. Going backwards to the last failed monetary regime was politically unappealing.

And so the US dollar hegemony continues to this day. The dollar is fully entrenched as the settlement currency for international trade. As of today if any nation wants to buy oil, the lifeblood of the global economy, they pay in dollars. This alone, along with demand for foreign reserves create an unnatural demand for US assets, specifically treasury debt. Robert Triffin opined that the collapse of Bretton woods did not solve his dilemma because the country that supplies the world with it's reserve asset in the form of their currency and debt will still be forced to supply an excess of this reserve to satisfy world demand and thus, run a trade deficit in perpetuity. Such a dynamic can not exist under the natural laws of economics, it can only survive only with active and unanimous political support and intervention.

The issue facing the modern United States is that since the rest of the world uses the US dollar as a reserve behind their own currencies, that demand has allowed the United States to run a deficit in perpetuity and the mechanics of this trade has allowed the US to export price inflation abroad. Quite simply, the US imports real goods in excess of the real goods it exports. The deficit balance minus service exports is made up with printed US dollars. Our trade partners ship/recycle the same dollars back to the United States in exchange for US Treasury Debt. The US Treasuries are held as reserves on the balance sheet of their central bank, and local currency printed against those new reserves. This process, although inflationary for our trade partner, allows them to keep their currency weak vs the US Dollar and prices cheap for US consumers.

Every nation on earth other than the United States has a limit to their potential trade deficit confined by their existing reserves plus their borrowing capacity. Not only does the US have the capacity to run a perpetual and growing trade deficit but the rest of the world actually demands us to run a balance of payment deficit or else their reserves will have to shrink, along with their credit, currency and economy. Good deal for us, no? This situation means that for 40 years our trade partners have not only tolerated, but dysfunctionally enabled our perpetual deficits. The United States has had the "exorbitant privilege" of being the issuer of the worlds' reserve currency. We've all enjoyed the benefits, now comes the pain.

Sure enough as Triffin foretold the US trade surplus began shrinking immediately after the collapse of Bretton Woods and transitioned to a permanent trade deficit by 1975, never to return to a surplus to date, 37 years later. The previously stable national debt (with a permanent ceiling of $400 billion dollars) has ballooned to over $16 trillion dollars, a multiple of 40 times what it was during the previous monetary regime. Given this 4-decade perpetual trade deficit with the rest of the world and "hyperinflation" of US dollar credits and claims, many have wondered how the US has avoided massive price inflation at home.

Triffin's dilemma continues to play an important role in the ongoing financial crisis the world has found itself in since 2008. The governor of the Peoples Bank of China specifically referenced Triffin's Dilemma as the root cause of the current financial disorder and suggested an immediate effort to transition away from the US dollar to avoid more catastrophic consequences.

The US Council on Foreign Relations aptly describes why Triffin's dilemma becomes unsustainable:

"To supply the world's risk-free asset, the center country must run a current account deficit and in doing so become ever more indebted to foreigners, until the risk-free asset that it issues ceases to be risk free. Precisely because the world is happy to have a dependable asset to hold as a store of value, it will buy so much of that asset that its issuer will become unsustainably burdened."

Have we reached the day when the United States has become unsustainably burdened? Can US debt honestly be considered to still be risk free? S&P certainly doesn't think so, neither does our second largest creditor, China (after our own Federal Reserve) who has been a net seller of US government debt for some time now. And where will the world go to find another dependable asset to hold as a store of value?

Triffin's endgame is simple. A rapid diversification of reserves out of the dollar by foreign central banks. This diversification out of the dollar is only possible given a viable alternative. More and more nations are agreeing to unilateral trade agreements settled in their individual currencies. With each new agreement, global demand for the dollar wanes. It is no coincidence that QE1 coincided with China and the rest of the world backing off demand for US treasury debt. The amounts of QE2 and QE3 match perfectly (or close enough for government work) with US trade deficits from 2009 to today. Given the US Government's seemingly permanent addiction to "free" foreign goods, the trade deficit appears to be irreversible. The extreme danger for those of us in the United States, holding assets denominated in US dollars, is that the Fed is actively creating base money to feed the addiction. As the monetary base grows, the value of existing US dollar denominated assets and credit is devalued. One way to protect against this debasement of your savings is to do as the central banks do – acquire and hold physical gold bullion.

The blueprint for this alternative has been in plain sight since the late 1990's, and if you watch what central banks do – not what they say – you can benefit.

For the first time in FOUR DECADES, global central banks have become net buyers of gold. This central bank demand has been driven by countries that previously had an insatiable appetite for US treasury debt – most notably China. After 40 years, the political and structural support for US dollar holdings abroad is slipping away. Foreign central banks know that the only way to protect their reserves (and defend the value of their home currency), is by holding gold. Their preparations are well under way.

Just as central banks are increasing their gold purchases, private citizens also are exercising their right to diversify their own private reserves. But given the still infinitesimal rates of gold ownership (1% tops most estimates) there is a long way to go. Why shouldn't the average person do what the big boys are doing? Diversifying out of the dollar, out of paper currencies and making sure their assets aren't someone else's liability seem prudent for everyone in times like there. Here at GBI, we see ourselves as a way for every investor to have the choice on how to save their stored labor. We want to make it as easy to buy and sell gold as it is to move money from your savings account to your checking account. We can all walk in the footsteps of the giants, as a Friend and mentor is apt to say.

As a bonus, if gold was to become the worlds foremost reserve asset, would that not finally solve good old Triffins dilemma? Wouldn't gold serving as the preferred global saving vehicle and fiat continuing to serve as the worlds spending vehicle finally break the natural tension Triffin has so aptly illuminated for us? Perhaps, but given golds stable supply and other unique features (see our next essay titled "Forget Supply and Demand, it's all Stock to Flow."), it would by necessity be at a much higher price to function in that reserve role. Some estimates put that potential price into the many tens of thousands of dollars, and given a monetary and fiscal path that seems to be following Triffin's fateful trajectory, how could any price be ruled out?

0
Your rating: None
 

- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Fri, 10/05/2012 - 19:40 | 2861550 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture

Gold Bitchez!

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 19:43 | 2861568 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Bacteria bitchez!!!

Bacteria that poop gold?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/innovations/post/a-bacteria-that-poops-gold-yep-that-exists-and-its-in-an-art-exhibit-video/2012/10/04/1617f178-0e5d-11e2-bd1a-b868e65d57eb_blog.html

Several olympic sized pools filled with these hungry little buggers and I'll be rich...RICH I SAY!!!

In a century.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 19:49 | 2861594 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

FOFOA explores Triffin's Dilemma at length:

fofoa.blogspot.com

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:08 | 2861668 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

FOFOA is a must read for gold bugs. Just make sure you have plenty of quiet te so you can focus on what he is saying.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:11 | 2861677 Motley Fool
Motley Fool's picture

...and leave your baggage at the door. ^^

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:42 | 2861765 Thomas
Thomas's picture

One of the best summaries I've seen of Triffin's Dilemma. I think--think--that Chris Whalen endorsed this endgame (what I call a suicide mission) for the US dollar. 

I'm 55% precious metals with almost half of that in the truest (physical) form. The rest is CEF for the most part. I'm hunkered down (since '99) but not sanguine at all.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 22:36 | 2862021 Unbezahlbar
Unbezahlbar's picture

"...trade deficit in perpetuity...."

 

Sounds like along time.

 

Excellent article...thank you!

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 08:15 | 2862452 dearth vader
dearth vader's picture

"The Day of the Triffins," coming soon to a theatre near you.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 22:07 | 2863850 ZeroAvatar
ZeroAvatar's picture

Matinee:  "The Trouble With Triffins".

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:51 | 2861782 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Those guys at FOFOA blog are fools dancing on the string held by bankers. They actually believe another paper system like the about-to-collapse Euro is the right solution. I cannot wait for the days when Euro finally dissovles to see how they will spin their brain dead theory.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:57 | 2861805 Motley Fool
Motley Fool's picture

You may be waiting a while there friend. :P

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:06 | 2861821 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Turns out you don't need to wait for long. Check the story below. See that is reality while you guys at FOFOA blog are living in a dream, wishfully thinking people would love your central planning solution. Tell me why a poor nation like Bulgaria gives Euro a thumb-down if it's such a great idea. Try spinning that.

 

Bulgaria Refuses To Join Eurozone

 

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/eus-poorest-member-country-smacks-down-euro-bulgaria-refuses-join-eurozone

 

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:19 | 2861854 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

You must have just skimmed his stuff or read someone else's misinterpretation.   The Euro != freegold.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 22:00 | 2861957 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Euro is freegold: A currency not tied to hard backing and a CB marking its gold reserve to market value. 

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 22:15 | 2861981 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Wrong.  Where you are missing the point is that there is no recognized "market value" currently for physical gold, only the fake paper-gold one (albeit some symptomatic arbitrage here and there).  Once the paper-gold market fails during a major fiat collapse and the monetary giants scramble for the real thing with no counter-party risk, then a true physical market will have to develop and freegold will come of age.  The Euro CB may in fact be one of the giants who end up driving the creation of a real physical market so that they *can* mark their physical reserves to market post-paper.  Freegold isn't the Euro nor is it even a monetary system ... it is a post-paper-gold paradigm in which gold will be chosen as the best medium for saving wealth.  Not imposed like hardened currencies must be imposed ... chosen freely.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 22:56 | 2862052 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

An honest gold price is the ultimate enemy to bankers' print-to-rule scam. Expecting ECB to give you an honest gold price is like expecting the thieves to notify you in advance about their planned theft so that you could move your wealth away. You guys are so out of touch it's almost hilarious.

The right way to fix the issue is bringing the hard currency back and abolishing all CBs so no bank could get away with their fractional scam any more.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 23:40 | 2862126 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Out of touch, huh?  Who sets your 'honest' gold price behind the "hardened currency?"  You?  Me?  Comrade Dear Leader?  Price-fixing is tyranny.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 00:20 | 2862172 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Price-fxing is your beloved ECB's specialty. Look at what they are doing in the bond market - unlimited bond purchase to cap the yield. Tell me about tyranny please. 

Why are you on one hand against price-fixing and then on other supporting the entity doing it? This is like reading free gold - you guys contradict yourselves all the time.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 04:20 | 2862221 nuinut
nuinut's picture

It's your assumptions about how monetary systems function causing your contradictions.

Do you own any eurozone bonds? No? Then why do you care?

The ECB are protecting their currency so the people using it (you know, the regular folks) don't get wiped out. That's their mandate. Currency stability.

Bondholders accepted the risk when they made their purchase. Someone's gotta take the hit; why should it be John Q. Public who uses euros? 

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 04:50 | 2862341 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Currency stability?? You are kidding yourself. ECB does not give a damn about regular folks. They are there to socialize the loss should the fractional reserve game melt down. It's such perpetual fractional system that destroys stability. The only thing ECB wants from you, the sheeple, is you use their FIAT so they can socialize it every time it blows up.

And don't give us that already debunked "but you can save in gold" FOFOA myth. In a FIAT system it's impossible that everyone saves in gold while no one holds FIAT. That FIAT will be in someone's hand so when the inflation hits it still hurts the people.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 06:15 | 2862380 nuinut
nuinut's picture

Really like those strawmen, eh?

Good luck to you.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 21:37 | 2863804 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

I can tell you are upset b/c someone dare call your naked ECB/freegold emperor out.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 00:21 | 2862164 nuinut
nuinut's picture

dlmaniac,

The euro is not freegold; the euro is a currency compatible with freegold.

Freegold is simply the absence of gold denominated credit (aka paper gold) in the market.

The euro is compatible with this because (as you can easily see if you care to look at this week's ECB consolidated financial statement) market price gold values the euro, and the ECB (issuer of the euro) are publicly acknowledging this. This means the users of the euro value the euro, not the ECB. If the users of the euro think it is overvalued, they will buy gold with it, and in doing so bid up the price of gold in euros. Pretty straightforward.

Can you not see a little dissonance between the current gold valuations of: 

  • ECB: EUR 1,377.417 per fine oz.
  • USTreasury: USD 42.222 per fine oz. ?

One CB is attempting to ignore the market, and relying on the public continuing to do that too, while the other is acknowledging its subservience to the market. Of course all this contrasts sharply with many popular ZH comment memes, so I don't expect these observations to gain much traction here.

Sincere apologies for interupting your confirmation bias, but there may be other readers both willing and able to think for themselves who may appreciate a different perspective to consider than the same old conspiracy theory/doom and gloom one.

 

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 02:59 | 2862295 Reven
Reven's picture

Thanks for the Freegold refresher.  I think many gold bugs could benefit from a logical challenge to their rigid worldview on gold.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:20 | 2861856 Motley Fool
Motley Fool's picture

So a country not joining the euro is the same thing as the euro is destroyed? Curious thinking there.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:39 | 2861913 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Here comes the denial, again. Euro is destroyed b/c it merely repeats the same failure of every FIAT system that promotes credit expansion.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 09:19 | 2862494 This just in
This just in's picture

You're right.  Better stock up on those ultra stable Ben bucks. 

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:19 | 2861688 akak
akak's picture

 

FOFOA explores Triffin's Dilemma at length

 

Does FOFOA know how to explore any subject in any other way?

I am no ADD-afflicted jumping bean modern American by any means (just the opposite), but honestly, this guy needs to realize that his mega-verbosity has and is turning off MANY people to what he has to say.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:20 | 2861699 Motley Fool
Motley Fool's picture

Nothing that is worthwhile doing is ever easy.

 

We've tried, some of us to condense it, but given the difficulties of nuance, the length is required.

 

In time I have grown to appreciate it. More is better. ^^

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:59 | 2861811 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Amen, fool.  +31.1034768g

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:56 | 2861801 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

What he has to say is complex and important.  I appreciate his verbosity.  There are those who have done a decent job of distilling it down to the bare bones.  I believe Blondie did it best, here: http://flowofvalue.blogspot.com/2010/10/freegold_41.html

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 20:59 | 2861807 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

If you cannot convince then confuse. His whole "FIAT + gold" system is a banker pipe-dream to retain their monopoly over everyone's money.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:11 | 2861832 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Hardly, maniac.  First of all it isn't "his," it is going to happen all on its own.  Secondly, it will not be a fiat + gold "system," it will be the failure of both the dollar and the manipulated paper gold markets resulting in a paradigm shift for savers and their prefered savings medium.  This is what Motley Fool meant by leaving your baggage at the door.  A gold (or anything) standard *cannot* work and once you let him walk you through why, you won't want it to.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:17 | 2861849 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

It's not "lack of saving medium" causing the problem. You can save in anything today. It's elite's monopoly to print FIAT causing it. Does his free gold system get rid of the FIAT monopoly? NO! He is still advocating it, which is music to bankers' ear.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:27 | 2861878 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Baggage ... it's keeping you from the truth.  Fiat isn't the problem.  Saving your excess production in the same thing being fractionalized and loaned is the problem.  Take the time to understand what is being said rather than just recoiling from the fact that fiat *must* stay.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:29 | 2861889 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Put down the cult coolaid and think of this: Why do bankers deserve to fractionalize the money to steal in the first place? They don't. Promoting another paper system is supporting bankers to retain their monopoly.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:42 | 2861919 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Reread your history, sir.  The banks fractionalize because *we*, their depositors, have always deliberately encouraged them to do so.  There may be a great criminal banking system out there but it isn't criminal because of the fractionalizing, it is criminal because they have been allowed to buy up the political class who let them get away with both taking money that doesn't belong to them and socializing their losses when they over-leverage and it blows up on them.  If you don't want to participate in a fractionalized banking system ... don't; store you weath in GOLD.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:55 | 2861946 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

"If you don't want to participate in a fractionalized banking system ... don't; store you weath in GOLD."

You still don't understand the issue: You have no choice but to participate in the fractional system. You cannot have everyone saving in gold while no one holds the FIAT, can you? Any time you collect a paycheck, pay a bill or go shopping you have to go through FIAT and there you are screwed by the bankers. If you don't take the bankers head on you will always be screwed.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 22:21 | 2861994 i_fly_me
i_fly_me's picture

Gold for savings.  Fiat for medium of exchange.  Where is the problem?  If you want to spend some savings, trade some gold for fiat.  If you don't like what the banks are doing to the fiat, convert it to gold as soon as you get it.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 22:45 | 2862035 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

"Where is the problem?"

When you try to save in gold you need someone to trade his gold for your fractional FIAT. That could happen only if you could con a fool into taking the loss of purchasing power for you or be willing to overpay for someone else' gold and therefore take the loss yourself. 

It's still a scam to shuffle the losses around and pretend it's a fair solution.

Fri, 10/05/2012 - 23:27 | 2862107 fiddler_on_the_roof
fiddler_on_the_roof's picture

My understanding of FOFOA is - The person selling his Gold to you is either

- retired and selling a portion of his wealth just to cover his monthly expense. No one else sells to you except

  miners, who also will use the cash to run day to day operation

 

- is a person going to sell Gold to raise cash to open a business.

 

Once everyone understands that Gold is for saving and currency for a month's expense. Govt cannot steal via currency dilution in a month. Take an example - say a man earns $5000 per month. He uses $4000 for expenses + taxes and the remaining saving of $1000 is converted to Gold.

 

Govt can steal via inflation only for a short duration just like people in 3rd world countries who don't buy their Govt bonds or have currency deposits at bank, but only in real assets. freegold is when people realize that only Gold is the focal point for saving. 

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 00:01 | 2862146 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

Government and bankers can steal as long as the public use the FIAT. All they need is printing some money and then buying gold with it. Once they take the gold off the market savers end up with less gold in the market so the price will have to bid up. After price bids up, savers end up taking in less gold than they deserve so there bankers and govt rob them. And that's just one of many ways their FIAT can screw the public.

Does not matter if it's a month or not. Dollar does not crash in one month either but it's failing steadily nonetheless. 

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 01:09 | 2862186 fiddler_on_the_roof
fiddler_on_the_roof's picture

you are precisely explaining currency management by any GOVT post-freegold as described by FOFOA.

In this case you are explaining dilution of currency by Govt to battle deflation. When Govt prints money to buy Gold, more money chase same Gold and goods and so Gold/goods price will proportionately increase. People will understand they can buy less Gold/goods after expenses and will demand more salary. This is like Zimbabwe printing zimb dollar to buys US Dollars to buy oil. Also remember Govt can buy only a tiny fraction of Gold, whereas all the savers will immediately get a jump in their Gold wealth. So see no one is effected.

 

If you think that all people decide Gold is for saving and currency for expense, No Govt can steal anything from you. As FOFOA says - you need to leave your baggage.

 

 

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 01:31 | 2862230 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

"People will understand they can buy less Gold/goods after expenses and will demand more salary."

Let's use math to show how this is not possible. Say you and 4 other guys pool your whine in a big barrel with each owning 20% (your salary). Then a guy (banker and/or government) comes in to take 20% out and then puts 20% water in (dilution). 

So you say, "Wait, you dilute it to 80%." The guy says, "No problem, you just go for a quarter instead of 20%(demand more salary) when you take your share out. A quarter(25%) X 80% = 20%. You still have your whine back."

The problem is there are only 4 quarters in a pool for 5 guys so someone is bound to take a loss.


"No Govt can steal anything from you."

If you let govt print to battle deflation or for whatever excuses they are so good at supplying, you will take a loss as I show above. You guys are telling the world the mathematical impossibility and yet expect us to believe it's a sound solution. 

And why do you want to battle deflation to begin with? Battling deflation is merely stealing money from those who do not want to pay for a high price and then give it to those who want a high price. Another price fixing scam.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 02:14 | 2862275 fiddler_on_the_roof
fiddler_on_the_roof's picture

my last shot at trying to explain a thesis.

your wine is like an existing saving. Wine is not like a new earnings. Also as I told you, Govt can only buy little Gold say 0.001% of existing Gold. The increase in price of Gold goes to remain holders of Gold who hold 99.999% of Gold. As the new earning are geting diluted say 2% a month, ie they will demand 2% increase in salary each month - maybe with a small lag. This small stealing via inflation is worth the use of fiat currency to do day to day transaction.

 

I have real world experience in this regard because I lived in a high inflation and people never saved in currency, but saved only in real assets. But once the useless Gold as focal point is understood, it alone absorbs the excess savings of people. Since people of 3rd world nations did not save in currency, they were never effected by currency dilution, but were only asking for higher salary. If the Govt wants to manage currency properly, they will not dilute as you say because they cannot steal via inflation.

 

Adios. No more extending this thread. for you your way, for me my way. let us see how things go.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 06:03 | 2862373 dlmaniac
dlmaniac's picture

"your wine is like an existing saving. Wine is not like a new earnings."

No you don't get the analogy. The pool of wine is like a pool of FIAT, NOT "an existing saving". That pool is where your salary comes from. Its purity stands for how much purchasing power it has.

When someone dilutes the wine the loss is delivered. There's no way you can demand higher salary to compensate for the loss.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 12:12 | 2862814 funthea
funthea's picture

As I previously wrote to FOFOA, without a response:

While Schelling's focal point is certainly a legitimate theory. Your interpretation of his explanation of it, somehow became exclusionary and finite. I believe you took his general description as the outer confines and conclusions rather than the introduction to the premise.

Allow me to explain using Schelling’s own example:
Three of the squares are blue and one is red. According to the theory both contestants will pick the red square, and I agree. However, if we add a green square and tell the contestants that they must each pick two in order to win, they will still pick the red and green squares. The focal point theory is still in tacked, and they still win the prize. The theory does not limit the choices to merely one in order to stay valid.

Here is another example of musical chairs.

10 people walking around 9 chairs (8 blue chairs and one black chair). They are told that when the music stops, only those sitting in blue chairs with go on to the next round.

Ok, start the music... and now stop the music. What do we find? There is only one person standing. Why? because humans will always defer to their instinct of reaction rather than inaction. It didn't matter that we said the rules were that only by sitting in the blue chairs would you be taken to the next round. They will not stand idly by while there is an empty seat... even if you tell them it is the wrong one.

 

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 13:41 | 2862949 Motley Fool
Motley Fool's picture

I like your second example more.

 

I tend to agree that in panic some will sit in the black(silver) chair only to be informed they still lose. ^^

 

The concept is not exclusionairy, yet in trade marginal effectivenes plays a role, and the black(silver) chair will always be more inefficient than the blue(gold) ones.

 

Hell, it's very likely some will sit on the green (UST's) chairs just to not be left standing. They still lose. :)

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 15:28 | 2863206 funthea
funthea's picture

I don't believe that gold only, to the exclusion of silver, is as much a for gone conclusion as FOFOA and others think, for the above reasons as well as the below:

Just as palladium is not money because the Russians control the supply, thereby making it unstable via manipulation. This is the same type of thing you get when you have only one form of money; no competition. This makes for an environment ripe for manipulation. The squeezing out of silver as a monetary unit was done for that very reason. Gold was held and controlled by the CB. With silver in the way, they could not control the monetary system to the extent they needed to. They needed to limit the competition. This was good for the bankers but bad for the people at large.

Imagine this: if the only cars available were Chevy's, and they were put to market. The price discovery that would be found would be regarding those who wished to have a car and those who did not. Price discovery was not found necessarily for a Chevy, but rather for a car in general. If GM limited production for various reasons, be it legitimate or otherwise,a new price discovery would be found. They could manipulate the supply at will, thus causing new price discoveries. However, if we introduce competition of Ford, suddenly we find true price discovery, of not only cars in general, but also for the individual auto maker, one over the other. Even if one wishes to manipulate the supply, true price discovery is maintained.

Sat, 10/06/2012 - 15:54 | 2863276 Motley Fool
Motley Fool's picture

I suggest you read up on the history of silver. The above sounds like it was absorbed from conspiracy minded silverbugs.

 

That aside, I do not mind waiting to see which if us is proven correct. Do you?

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