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Guest Post: When Money Dies - A "Live From The Summit" Report

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Submitted by Kevin Brekke of Casey Research

When Money Dies - a "Live from the Summit" Report

Where is the US and global economy going? What will happen to the dollar and euro? And how can investors protect themselves from the fallout? All these questions and more were answered at the Casey Research/Sprott, Inc. Summit When Money Dies. Kevin Brekke reports live from the conference…

The vibe had changed noticeably. Waiting patiently to receive my morning fix from the lobby barista, a sense of anticipation charged the air that was absent the previous day. The dress code had undergone a transformation as well, a little more “resort snappy” with the coveted Casey Research lanyard and badge the accessory du jour. And the main presentation room was beginning to fill early with attendees intent on procuring a seat at the front of the room. A subdued murmur of warm conversations among new and old acquaintances presaged another hot day in the desert.

Yes, this was the day… summit kick-off day.

The official starting hour neared, the packed main presentation room fell silent as David Galland, the summit’s host, approached the podium and introduced the first speaker and our company’s namesake, Doug Casey.

The roar of applause cut through the excitement as Doug took the stage. And from the first words, his inimitable style, wit, and unique insight were front and center.

Casey Research subscribers are familiar with Doug’s view of today’s chronic global crisis – we are exiting the eye of the storm and headed for trouble. Doug has long warned of the impending Greater Depression that awaits America and many other world economies. So it was fitting that the title of Doug’s talk was, “The Greater Depression Is Now.”

To ensure that everyone would be on the same page, Doug began with a “definition” of government as the monopoly of force within a certain geographic location. And that government will use this force in a coercive manner to get what it needs. As the Greater Depression grinds on, tax revenues fall and interest costs on the national debt rise, the government will find itself in desperate need of more money – your money, of course.

He pointed out that during depressions the rich usually do okay, and the poor, having little to lose and being on the government gravy train, will get by – they will demand and get more help from government.

It is the middle class that will get killed because they save in dollars. When the dollar is ultimately destroyed, the middle class will be as well.

Doug’s talk was peppered with some typical Casey-esque one-liners that drew roars of laughter. My favorite: When observing that the government shouldn’t be in the letter delivery business and comparing the bankrupt USPS to profitable FedEx, he rhetorically asked: “Why is it you never hear about an employee going FedEx?”

A classic Casey moment.

A hard act to follow, indeed. Yet Bud Conrad gave the audience all the data and analysis to support Doug’s Greater Depression forecast.

In line with the summit’s theme – dying currencies – Bud started with a few slides of ancient Roman coins showing an evolution through several iterations: first minted from gold; then copper was added; then copper was the major alloy; and finally there was no gold content. The money was systematically debased until it became worthless.

This is an early example of inflation.

It is no coincidence, he pointed out, that as money is debased, it undermines the cohesion of a society. The decline of honest money goes hand in hand with the decline of a country. This is what the US is experiencing today – the decline and fall of the American Empire.

With the advent of fractional reserve banking and the use of paper representations of money – today’s ubiquitous paper bills of credit backed by debt – Bud succinctly observed that economies can’t be strong when they are built on debt.

Lots of synchronized head nodding followed.

Bud took us through a history of charts that placed the current US government debt and borrowing situation in context. By several measures, including the debt-to-GDP ratio, the US is in the middle of a pack of countries on the road to experiencing their own Greek moment.

Bud’s data- and analysis-packed presentation covered way more than can be summarized here, and finished with his forecasts for the economy, interest rates, commodity prices, and many other indicators. When referring to the ease with which digital money is created, Bud noted that it (digital money) isn’t worth the paper it isn’t printed on. Funny, yet tragically true.

Next up, Casey Research was honored to introduce Richard Maybury in a rare public appearance. Richard is regarded as one of the top free-market writers in America and, for me, his speech was powerful, emotional, and provocative.

He noted that even if all the calls and predictions at the conference were false, the dollar would still fall because of war.

He began his argument for the inevitability of war by stating that the fundamental problem is political power and its corrupting influence on moral judgment.

The Treaty of Westphalia in 1648 established the ideal of non-intervention in the affairs of states and recognized that a clear and present danger must exist before an act of aggression against another state could be taken. These were laws based on logic and ethics. Reduced to a basic maxim, Richard said, “that means my right to swing my fist ends at the start of your nose.”

Richard pieced together the historical facts into a disturbing picture of today’s reality: a clear and present danger is no longer needed for acts of aggression. The state just needs to think that the other side is up to no good. Logic and ethics are dead, and we are entering a dog-eat-dog era of aggression.

There is far more to his argument that can be covered here. Richard coined the term “Chaostan” (the land of chaos), and warned that a state that disregards laws based on logic and ethics is headed for war. And a byproduct of war is the destruction of the currency.

At the conclusion of Richard’s presentation, he took several poignant audience questions. Personally, I think too listen to just this one-hour segment of the summit is worth the price of our audio set.

Day Two: The Three E’s and Undervalued Stocks

If I were asked to make a list of my ten favorite words in the English language, serendipity would certainly be one of them, and likely near the top. The word derives from the Persian tale The Three Princes of Serendip, where a father sets about to instill the great virtues into his sons. Long story short, the three young men end up gaining this wisdom in a rather unexpected and unforeseen way – and the word “serendipity” later entered the language to describe such adventures.

One of the most rewarding benefits from attending a Casey Summit is the great people you meet. And not just any kind of people that you might run into at, say, your neighbor’s cocktail party or the gym. No, the odds are pretty high that those you meet at the conference will share a similar world view as yourself and are eager to exchange ideas and experiences.

A popular offering at the summit is the Saturday night “dine-around,” where conference attendees sign up to have dinner with a member of the Casey staff, faculty and/or resource company reps. Last night, I had a wonderfully serendipitous dining adventure.

I met a couple who expatriated to Uruguay and are loving every minute of it. A man from Wyoming who lived in London for a time and is actively seeking a place to call his second home outside the US; two men from Texas that have launched a new business venture; a retired doctor who practiced in Canada; and a gentleman from Montreal who lived many years in Arabic countries. Definitely not your typical “cocktail party” chatter that came out of this.

When you meet someone interesting or run into your new friend at a Casey Summit, time can get away from you pretty quickly. And if you should miss a presentation or round table discussion here and there, no need to worry… we have the whole conference captured and available here.

The morning’s first presenter was Chris Martenson, a scientist and writer with unique insights on the future consequences of today’s trends.

His thesis rests on the principle of Three E’s – the Economy, Energy, and the Environment – and how they are interdependent.

The first E, the economy, is currently getting a lot of attention because our modern financial system is dependent on perpetual growth. As all money is loaned into existence, it carries with it a critical obligation to pay back both principal and interest. As long as the economy grows at a 2% rate, servicing the debt isn’t a problem. But it’s a different story if the growth of the economy slows or goes negative.

The problem is that perpetual growth requires energy – the second E – and there are limits to the rates of energy consumption growth and replacement.

The predicament is that the money supply has been increasing exponentially, requiring the economy to grow rapidly to service the debt, and our use of energy is increasing exponentially as well, a situation that cannot be sustained.

Chris makes an important distinction between a “problem” and a “predicament”: problems have solutions; predicaments have outcomes. If we don’t solve the problem of exponential debt-based money growth, then we must suffer through the outcomes.

Unfortunately, the government is focused on seeking solutions to predicaments, and that is a waste of time. Chris warned that investors must understand the possible outcomes and invest accordingly. As a presenter, you know your material was powerful when the next speaker begins by praising you and calls on the audience for another round of applause in your honor. And that is exactly what Rick Rule did after he was introduced. Chris Martenson’s presentation, a must-hear for all investors, is part of the complete summit audio collection.

Rick Rule, a long-time friend of the Casey organization, was so impressed with the content of the conference that he changed his speech topic. Rick is an engaging speaker who touched on many more topics than can be covered here.

However, I can distill his talk into two fundamental points.

First, as investors, we have heard a lot about risks from governments, the clash of cultures, geopolitics, etc. But in terms of your portfolio, the real risk is not taxes, regulations, fraud, or peak oil. It is your own self. In an era of permanent volatility, you must have the courage and liquidity to accept and exploit it.

Second, investors must find commonly held perceptions that are incorrect and bet against them. One of them is that the US dollar is a store of value. That’s wrong, and you can profit from it.

Rick continued with strategies and forecasts for the resource sector in general and the micro-cap sector in particular.

Rick was followed by John Hathaway, senior managing director of Tocqueville Asset Management.

John started out with a great quote: “There are no mulligans in the investment world.” If you are not familiar with this term, it is slang for a free, no-penalty, second chance at something; a “do-over.”

John strongly believes that gold stocks are completely undervalued at this stage and will generate out-sized returns. He expects strong earnings to be reported for the third quarter and for the stocks of the right companies to respond in kind. There will be no mulligan for the investor who misses the chance to get in on the gold mining stock story.

He admits that the mining stocks have not performed on par with the underlying metal and offers four possible reasons for their underperformance:

  1. ETFs have cannibalized gold stocks.
  2. Doubts on the sustainability of the gold price following its recent rapid rise.
  3. Margin pressures to build mines were rising, making it hard to turn a profit.
  4. Investors might be comparing today to 2008. In an environment where the financial sector was imploding, like in 2008, gold stocks did not do the job. Worries are that the same may happen again.

John made a compelling argument that we are entering a period of permanently higher prices for gold, and his presentation was packed with charts and data to support his case. He ended by taking several questions from the audience and had some interesting things to say about storing bullion offshore.

That wraps up only a very small snippet of the action at the Summit. If you’re intrigued and want to learn more, please don’t wait to order the complete audio collection with all the presentations – including Michael Maloney’s keynote speech during the banquet – panel discussions and specific stock recommendations by the faculty..

 

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Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:35 | 1733996 ivars
ivars's picture

Not all money will die , at least not until 2015:

What is next for stocks- have a look here with pictures:

http://www.tfmetalsreport.com/comment/65107#comment-65107

Predictions that are tested and eerie similarity of the USA and Greece stock markets.

 

And the conclusion for macro economic bacground that will rule 2012-2015:

Recession/deflation in the USA from q1 2012, further accelerating increase in unsustainble debt levels- default/inflation from jan 2015, loss of reserve status. 

One thing I can imagine will grow vs. other currencies during 2012-2013-2014 will be THE USD, unfortunately pegged by its reserve currency role and deflation at home.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:47 | 1734023 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

I think you missed the war angle. And these 7+ sigma times we are living through.

ORI

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:56 | 1734049 ivars
ivars's picture

7+ sigma is taken into account. War ? what will it change? If USD is stable and and recession in the USA is deflationary , USA can launch another war in 2013-2014 at no cost at all (despite DEBT being driven out of the charts) . So that to position itself best before dafaulting in 2015.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:43 | 1734212 Eally Ucked
Eally Ucked's picture

" If USD is stable and and recession in the USA is deflationary , USA can launch another war in 2013-2014" what if it's not stable and it's not deflationary?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:58 | 1734282 daxtonbrown
daxtonbrown's picture

We've been in a civil war for quite some time - over debt bondage. That is, over slavery to $100 trillion plus in unfunded liabilities. Except civil War II is much more subtle. In part this is because the territory has changed given that the Internet is now a prominent communications media and conduit for wealth. So instead of standing armies, you have proxy armies of illegals and unionists and anarchists, etc. http://www.futurnamics.com/civilwar.php

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:12 | 1734097 Withdrawn Sanction
Withdrawn Sanction's picture

If you can see it, why can't the market? And if the market does indeed see what you see, why wont it discount it, and in effect, front-run you?

Things have a nasty habit of playing out in the way we least expect (and, yes, that goes for me too).

No one expects the Spanish Inquisition

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:41 | 1734012 shazbotz
shazbotz's picture
George Soros in his own words End of the dollar Global Currency

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8AuqpJJDsr0

 



Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:43 | 1734014 fonestar
fonestar's picture

Gold and Silver don't die, just transient governments do.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:57 | 1734030 baby_BLYTHE
baby_BLYTHE's picture

All fiat Currencies and governments have finite lives. Gold and Silver have infitinte life.

Ask any five year old if they would rather unearth buried treasury demoninated in paper currency notes or gold & silver bullion.  In short, they know what real money is- a safe stable longterm storage of ones productivity/labor.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:26 | 1734156 Bolweevil
Bolweevil's picture

Aye, the lass be right! What say ye Slewie?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:45 | 1734020 ivars
ivars's picture

Not all money will die , at least not until 2015:

What is next for stocks- have a look here with pictures:

Revisiting Max Q | TF Metals Report

Predictions that are tested and eerie similarity of the USA and Greece stock markets.

And the conclusion for macro economic bacground that will rule 2012-2015:

Recession/deflation in the USA from q1 2012, further accelerating increase in unsustainble debt levels- default/inflation from jan 2015, loss of reserve status.

One thing I can imagine will grow vs. other currencies during 2012-2013-2014 will be THE USD, unfortunately pegged by its reserve currency role and deflation at home.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 14:47 | 1734024 Robot Traders Mom
Robot Traders Mom's picture

Waiting for deadpool the government agent to start in...

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:04 | 1734068 carbonmutant
carbonmutant's picture

"...a clear and present danger is no longer needed for acts of aggression"

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:06 | 1734079 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

Warren/Barak Obamaha has already proven that.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:13 | 1734100 PulauHantu29
PulauHantu29's picture

Vietnamese crushed France's colonial aspirations in Asia...Sarpozy now tries the French strength in North Africa.

Maybe he will get the next Nobel Peace Prize after all.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:35 | 1734187 Quinvarius
Quinvarius's picture

I am pretty sure France has previously tried the North Africa thing unsuccessfully as well.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:06 | 1734313 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

+1   See the movie March or Die for details...

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 22:25 | 1735634 Budd Fox
Budd Fox's picture

Or "The Battle of Algiers"...for what matters...the second most resounding defeat of The Legion after Dien Bien Phu.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:16 | 1734108 Withdrawn Sanction
Withdrawn Sanction's picture

Maybury's a smart cat. He's made me a ton of money, and saved me a ton more.

{edit: this was supposed to attach to Carbonmutant's comment, but didnt}

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:06 | 1734080 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

Dougy Kass said he went in big with a long position on SPY this morning at 112. Sour already. He added to it on the way down. Bottom call on the year according to Doug. Yipes. 

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:07 | 1734084 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

When the CAT dies then what?

CAT Caterpillar Inc 70.97 -2.81 -3.81% 11.7 583.5K -24.34%
Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:07 | 1734316 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

well, you know all those shovel-ready jobs that got talked up a couple years ago?  They're going to become a reality.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:15 | 1734107 ziggy59
ziggy59's picture

 

Senate bill punishes China over undervalued money Senate bill would punish China for undervaluing currency, driving up costs of US goods

 

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Senate-bill-punishes-China-apf-1880727910....

This should be a good show, no?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:30 | 1734167 toady
toady's picture

They will do ANYTHING to inflate instead of deflation.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:39 | 1734183 PulauHantu29
PulauHantu29's picture

The Chinese?

Politicans must own no mirrors.

Tue, 10/04/2011 - 02:08 | 1736164 FreedomGuy
FreedomGuy's picture

This is first and foremost a political move, not an economic one. So judge it accordingly. About 20 nations peg their currency to the dollar and we are only singling out China. Don't expect much except noise and heat. However, the Chinese play for keeps so they might preempt.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:35 | 1734188 Syrin
Syrin's picture

Well ,this article only re-hashes what has been said here a hundred times already.   What I keep hoping to see are some real specifics.   Things like, "when X happens, then Y will happen and that will trigger the global financial apocalypse".   As it stands, we all agree that fiat currencies are essentially worthless.  precious metals are the place to store welath, and things will get ugly when TSHTF.   The questtion we all have is when does that happen, and how bad is it?   Decades long Depression?   Road Warrior 2 post apocalyptic world?   Just like today but for a generation or more like Japan?   Those are the things I want to see answered or at least speculated about in the most educated possible way.

 

I am preparing for a world more like Road Warrior 2 than modern day Japan.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:44 | 1734213 RSloane
RSloane's picture

I'm preparing for a modern day Japan where the only stimulating thing happening in production is brought about by a tsunami and a meltdown of a nuclear reactor. It sure isn't going to come from gov't policy.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:07 | 1734315 Smiddywesson
Smiddywesson's picture

Well Syrin, I don't know either, but you can cross off your list the possibility of a decades long drawing out of the crisis like with Japan.  Japan was a creditor nation and it was an isolated crisis, so there were trading partners to keep the game going.  They were able to finance their spending with domestic debt, and the world wasn't awash in derivatives like it is today.

Speaking of derivatives, they dwarf the underlying economies, which are of course, utterly broke.  We were able to kick the can by using an incredible amount of leverage and printing, but that just made the inevitable collapse more inescapable.  What it did do was allow the central banks to stack a lot of gold at low prices.  When their stacking is over, they will pull the plug and put us on a gold referenced system.  Everyone in paper at that time will take a huge haircut, and the people who screwed us will run around giving interviews and saying "We never saw it coming." 

Alternatively, if TPTB fail, and the system completely collapses.  In that case, the TPTB lose control.  The upside of that is we have a shot at freedom.  The downside is society breaks down and we can't feed the 7 billion mouths we have to feed.  In a world of just in time delivery and zero inventory, things would get bad in a handful of days.  It would be like your Road Warrior II movie in about 2-3 months in many areas.  I am not banking on this.  TPTB don't intend to step down from power.  They will shoot all the rioters and start a war between nations to keep everyone busy long before they would let their fiefdom rise against their reign.

When:  If physical decouples from paper and there is no physical supply available, the jig is up and there is no reason to kick the can.  The failure of the EU with cascading bank collapses would force their hand.  I'd be surprised if we get out of 2012 before the G20 announces a new monetary system.  Hell, it's on the agenda already.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:17 | 1734353 Shameful
Shameful's picture

Have to agree with a lot of what you say, but not the time.  Their ability to kick the can is simply amazing.  Personally I'd expect 2013 to be the time when real honest to goodness crises kick off that J6P can't ignore.  Oddly enough that is when the EU Bailout Mechanism is supposed set to be in place.  New currency systems take time, for that I would expect later like 2015-2018, next major war depending.  But that's just one guys opinion I could be wrong, but seems like there is still many stages left in this drama.

The important thing to remember is the big boys set up this game, so it stands to reason with all the resources art their disposal they knew which way the game would play out and could place their bets accordingly.  A good con man should always know the con he is running.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:27 | 1734420 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Syrin, Smiddy,

I have no idea what will happen either, other than it will likley be bad.  It has mystified me for years how long this has dragged out, but a denouement seems to be very close now.

Since I cannot predict WHAT will happen and WHEN, I am trying to cover as many bases (cases) as possible.  Diversification!

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:40 | 1734198 kridkrid
kridkrid's picture

I hate reading something when I agree with the points being made, only find a pitch is being made as well.  It doesn't make the message wrong and I certainly don't begrudge people from making a living, it just doesn't feel right.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:42 | 1734208 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

order now!

our robots are standing by!

people just like you can't wait to hear what these people said, so save $100 and order the whole yet-to-be-produced audio set for only $395.00!!!  the offer is only good till oct 3, when the conference ends, so, order now! 

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:44 | 1734219 RSloane
RSloane's picture

That's exactly the impression they give.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:27 | 1734419 Tidewater
Tidewater's picture

I vomited a little at "hard act to follow, indeed."

If I were asked to make a list of the writer's ten most prominent character traits, obsequious would certainly be one of them, and likely near the top. The word derives from the Persian tale The Ass-Kisser, where a rank-and-file editor sets about to impress his boss with groveling peonage. Long story short, the young man ends up embarrassing himself on ZeroHedge – and the word “brekke-noser” later entered the language to describe such adventures.

A classic Casey moment. Indeed.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:50 | 1734243 JW n FL
JW n FL's picture

 

 

One of them is that the US dollar is a store of value. That’s wrong, and you can profit from it.

Until Germany pulls the eject lever..

Until Europe falls..

Until New Yorks Finest opens fire on the portestors, becuase JP Moragn gave them another $4.6 million.. the dollar will out perform the other shit floating in the toilet!

Period.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 15:59 | 1734289 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 Who was the ass clown that , hung himself in a (AZ) prizon cell for selling { KOOL VITAMINS}?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:09 | 1734325 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

David Carradeine... right?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 17:10 | 1734632 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 It was a a pun. Go reload your bullets.

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:10 | 1734330 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

oh no man... it was Mike Hutcheson of INXS, right?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 17:17 | 1734660 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Speaking of [CAP's] .   I still like that band! A little Van Halen? I need a teacher? sarc/  (: ,dribble

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:04 | 1734308 slackrabbit
slackrabbit's picture

Hang on...Where is my free set of steak knives?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 16:39 | 1734488 SILVERGEDDON
SILVERGEDDON's picture

PUT THAT COFFEE DOWN!!!!!!!! Coffee is for closers!!!!!! First place is the trip to Hawaii. Second prize is the Ginsu steak knives. Third prize? THERE IS NO FUCKING THIRD PRIZE! YOU 'RE FIRED!!!!!!!!

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 17:13 | 1734643 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Where is "Orson Welles" when ya need him?

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 17:27 | 1734693 SILVERGEDDON
SILVERGEDDON's picture

Orson Welles is sucking on "Rosebud" - back end of Bernanke's britches, bitchez!

Mon, 10/03/2011 - 17:21 | 1734673 Rhodin
Rhodin's picture

Send us $400 quick.   

We will tell you how the rest of your money will die!

Hurry.  Special offer expires soon!

Wed, 10/12/2011 - 14:33 | 1766607 karmete
karmete's picture

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