Tuesday, April 8, 2008

The Debts of the Spenders: A Crisis of Fiat

The world is slowly waking up to the possibility of a gold standard. After Nixon unilaterally abolished Breton Woods in 1971, the dollar became the sole arbiter international reserve currencies. Unfortunately, more than 30 years of debt bubbles have bred an astonishing sense of entitlement among US policymakers.

They rely on the assumption that foreigners in developing nations will continue to lend funds despite lower returns. This assumption is a monetary fiction that severely distorts risk premiums and encourages exchange rate anamolies. The excess liquidity present in the U.S. only accelerates economic problems. The expansionary actions of the Federal Reserve have trickled down to affect other levels of the U.S. economy with the same reckless disregard for caution. With few sources of enduring domestic wealth, American homeowners have been encouraged to use their homes as credit backed vehicles. Credit cards and other forms of unsecured debt have proliferated.


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