Jim Grant on CNBC today discussing:
- The ‘bad idea’ to attempt to resolve the national debt problem by minting a trillion-dollar platinum coin. Supporters say the US Treasury would be able to deposit said coin with the Federal Reserve to act as an asset, backing part of the outstanding debt.
- As Jim notes, this is not an honest approach to discussing the root problem – which is based in the monetary system, itself.
- Besides that, the idea is preposterous and just shows how crazy this system has become. Things don’t hold value because someone says they have value. A thing has value based on the public/market demand for that thing.
- Prior to 1971, government spending was constrained by both interest rates and the fact that there was some semblance of a gold-backed currency via Bretton Woods. But today, we have neither constraint – the Fed’s zero percent interest rate policy combined with the current, purely fiat monetary system has created the unstoppable spending spree that has led us to these extreme levels of debt. If there is anything left at all as a bar against further spending, it is the debt ceiling. But even that is now being threatened with a proposal to remove it entirely.
- The just announced appointment of Jacob Lew as Treasury Secretary. Jim is holding judgement in order to see if there will be any honest discussion regarding the real problems of the monetary system.