Tag Archives: FED

Perpetuation of the Trillion dollar coin solution to US Debt

As our site name implies, we have more than a passing interest in monetary theory.  As such, ideas for new types of coin and currency are of special interest.  When the value of the coins proposed contains an insane amount of seigniorage, we are compelled to call it out.

 

The Fiscal Cliff melodrama playing out in the halls of US Federal Government’s Capital has given rise to the above mentioned monetary insanity.

As the so called, moronic “Fiscal Cliff” false alarm approaches, it becomes more common for those of a Socialist/Statist leaning philosophy to search for easy solutions to what amounts to enabling catastrophic policy failures, out of control spending, and unsustainable debt pacts.

This is not surprising, as Socialism and economics are incompatible philosophies. Anyone who claims otherwise either mistakenly applies small system theory to large scale systems or is a shill. From one of these insane theorists comes the idea of the US Treasury coining a trillion dollar platinum coin to deposit at the FED, who would then cancel the Treasury’s debts.

This will not happen, first and foremost, because the insane monetary system relies on debt as its lifeblood, as such, any debt cancellation by the underlying foundation of US Treasury debt is out of the question.

Second, it must be recognized that coining a trillion dollar coin, theoretically equal to 1/60 of global GDP, that anyone other than the FED would accept at face value, is impossible, it simply flies in the face of reason.  The FED has been paying 100 cents on the dollar for the MBS toilet paper that banks have sold to them for years now, as such, any concept of value left the halls of the Federal Reserve years ago.

The third reason is that the US debt at the FED has already been largely canceled via the FED’s various QE operations over the past several years. For the reasoning as to why the official US Debt held by the FED hasn’t been lowered to better reflect its true drag on GDP, we refer fellow taxpayers back to reason one.

We will present more data to back this claim in the coming week. In the meantime, if someone offers you a trillion dollar coin, be sure to check the spot price of platinum before making a more reasonable counter-offer. In any event, you are better off holding the platinum, as someday it will be worth are least a trillion Federal Reserve notes, the shills at the FED and Treasury have assured it.

The FED draws on its RRP Revolvers; Inflation solves the National Budget crisis and crushes the poor

11/8/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

“Inflation is always and everywhere a monetary phenomenon in the sense that it is and can be produced only by a more rapid increase in the quantity of money than output” – Milton Friedman

Today we came across evidence that the massive amounts of money created out of thin air may no longer be benignly parked at the Federal Reserve.  From Lee Adler at the wallstreetexaminer.com:

“The Fed was hit with withdrawals of $83.3 billion last Wednesday, the largest withdrawals from its deposit accounts that were not associated with quarterly tax payments since February of 2009…The Fed was apparently forced to take extraordinary measures to fund these withdrawals. These included the outright sale of nearly $24 billion in its Treasury note and bond holdings from the System Open Market Account. As a result, the Fed’s System Open Market Account (SOMA) fell to $2.611 trillion, some $43 billion below the Fed’s stated target of $2.654 trillion.”

Mr. Adler goes on to state that in order to meet these withdrawls, the FED had to borrow $43 billion from foreign central banks through “Reverse Repurchase Agreements (RRPs)”.  In a sense, the FED had to make the equivalent of a good old fashioned margin call that foreign central banks had to scramble to make good on.

Could this be the reason that Italian Bonds yields are surging and the ECB cut rates unexpectedly last week?

Could this be the reason that the BoJ had to expand its Yen debasement program to the tune of 5 trillion yen?

Ever since the FED opened swap lines with foreign central banks, it has generally been the FED lending money to the foreign banks to assure liquidity.  In this unexpected turn, the FED had to call in some of those loans to meet its own liquidity needs.

The FED is forced to draw on its RRP Revolvers

Could this be the first of what history will call a “Central Bank Run”?  Only time will tell, but we would expect the FED to announce another, large scale dose of QE (Quantitative Easing) of its own in the next few weeks in an attempt to meet a similar event with fresh cash instead of a disruptive firing of its RRP revolvers.

In a way, this is the moment that the FED and all of the taxing authorities on the planet have been waiting for.  Inflation is a government’s best friend.  It allows the wealth destruction that these defense and welfare agencies engage in to continue while socializing the costs in a manner that is imperceptible to the untrained eye.

Even the Deficit Super Committee is onto this fact.  They are now discussing the use of the “Chained Consumer Price Index (CPI)” in place of the current CPI calculation for everything from Social Security COLAs to tax brackets to welfare qualification thresholds.  From AP:

“Just as 55 million Social Security recipients are about to get their first benefit increase in three years, Congress is looking at reducing future raises by adopting a new measure of inflation that also would increase taxes for most families –(with) the biggest impact falling on those with low incomes.

If adopted across the government, the inflation measure would have widespread ramifications. Future increases in veterans’ benefits and pensions for federal workers and military personnel would be smaller. And over time, fewer people would qualify for Medicaid, Head Start, food stamps, school lunch programs and home heating assistance than under the current measure.

Taxes would go up by $60 billion over the next decade because annual adjustments to the tax brackets would be smaller, resulting in more people jumping into higher tax brackets because their wages rose faster than the new inflation measure. Annual increases in the standard deduction and personal exemptions would become smaller.”

Do you see how it works, fellow taxpayer?  Inflation, combined with statistical shenanigans intended to mask it, is the magic pill for broken government finances.  It is no secret that the Government’s finances are a disaster, which is why we expect to inflation in generous doses.

How exactly does “Chained CPI” differ from the current CPI calculation?  The article goes on to explain:

“Many economists argue that the chained CPI is more accurate because it assumes that as prices increase, consumers switch to lower cost alternatives, reducing the amount of inflation they experience.

For example, if the price of beef increases while the price of pork does not, people will buy more pork. Or, as opponents mockingly argue, if the price of home heating oil goes up, people will turn down their heat and wear more sweaters.”

Are you laughing yet?  Perhaps crying?  Now listen to how the Government justifies it:

“A report by the Moment of Truth Project, a group formed to promote the deficit reduction package produced by President Barack Obama’s deficit commission late last year, supports a new inflation measure. “Rather than serving to raise taxes and cut benefits, switching to the chained CPI would simply be fulfilling the mission of properly adjusting for cost of living,” it argues.”

If you are not yet laughing, crying, or laughing to avoid crying, allow us to assist you.  What they are trying to say is that in the parallel universe in which the Government operates, the need to substitute more expensive goods for cheaper ones does not constitute a real loss of the purchasing power of the currency with which those goods are purchased.

After all, you can always put on a sweater, right?

Where the Government’s logic, and ultimately society, begins to break down is at the point when all prices, beef, pork, heating oil, and sweaters begin to rise astronomically in tandem with each other.  At that point, it becomes painfully obvious that the problem lies in the currency, not with the producers. 

Unfortunately, at that point, the Government will have long since vilified and persecuted speculators and producers for alleged price gouging to the point that the productive part of society, those who grow food and produce raw materials, will have completely ceased to produce and/or fled the country.  The subsequent lack of production will result in an increasingly scarce stock of real goods being quickly priced and re-priced in a currency which is produced at an incredible surplus.

In layman’s terms, these events will be summed up in the phrase “hyperinflation.”

If the FED has to draw once again on its RRP revolvers, it will be clear that the benign growth in the M2 money supply will have become malignant, and that hyperinflation will soon be in full bloom.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for November 8, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $3.54
Oil Price per Barrel:  $96.44

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.63  
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.01%

FED Target Rate:  0.09%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,737 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.00%
Unemployment Rate:  9.0%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.3%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,040  

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,122,700,000,000 RED ALERT!!!  THE ANIMALS ARE LEAVING THE ZOO!!!

M2 Monetary Base:  $9,507,600,000,000 YIKES UP $1 Trillion in one year!!!!!!!

The Dow Rises against a Wave of Bad News, The Inflation Mega-Trend Releases Caged Currency into the Wild

11/7/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…
The fairy tale of the world’s current financial system continued today.  Stocks crept higher in the face of what seems to be a deluge of bad news:

“Frustration mounts for MF Global clients” – Jon Corzine’s firm cannot account for $600 million in client funds.  Beyond the inability to deliver client funds on demand, MF Global clients began receiving margin calls as their collateral with the firm vanished.  The ripple effect was so severe that commodities exchanges relaxed their margin rules in order to to avoid wider damage.  The fall of MF Global was like an earthquake, now it is time to brace for the financial Tsunami.

New Census data raise number of poor to 49 million” – The official poverty rate is 15.1%.  However, it hits 16% when you slide the income bar just a bit higher to $24,343 for a family of four.  In other words, one in six Americans is currently living below this slightly adjusted poverty measure.

“Italy bond yields soar; euro zone troubles deepen” – Lest we forget that the euro financial system is a complete disaster, Italian yields are climbing and the Italian bond market is beginning to resemble the leaning tower of Pisa.  Then came reports that Spain only had 20 billion Euros in reserves at the end of August (they must have spent their savings on vacation!) and as their banking system crumbles, they are largely helpless to intervene to save it.  Meanwhile France is now pushing austerity leaving Germany and the ECB as the only backstops in Europe.

Yet in spite of this disasterous news, the Dow is holding just above 12,000.  What does it mean?

Far from signaling economic recovery, the action appears to be further evidence that what Nadeem Walayat at the Market Oracle calls the Inflation Mega-Trend (and consequent Stealth Bull Market in stocks) is firmly in place.

The Mega-Trend, as Mr. Walayat calls it, is the simultaneous debasement of the currency and spreading of deflationary propaganda intended to delay the public’s reaction to the inflation caused by said debasement.

Think about it, while the FED, ECB, BoJ, and nearly every other Central Bank in the world pump money into their financial systems in order to “fight deflation” or “stimulate the export market,” the average person has watched gas, food, and the price of nearly everything else (besides their paycheck) steadily rise over the past decade.

The the public is told that these steady increases are “healthy inflation” which is currently “understood” to be roughly 2% a year.  This 2% in reality represents the indirect tax rate imposed on anyone who chooses to hold a currency as an asset or accept the currency as wages.  There is not time here to properly refute the fallacy that inflation is somehow necessary for GDP growth.  However, inflation is useful and absolutely necessary to keep an insane, “debt is money”, ponziesque, wealth destroying monetary system functioning.

As the Central Bank creates trillions of dollars out of thin air in a vain attempt to stabilize the global financial system, the public is told that it this new currency is “benign” because most of the money is being held on deposit at the Federal Reserve simply to buffer the banks against falling asset prices and keep the ATM machines spitting out cash.

Yet, with the stock market maintaining its optimism in the face of seeming insurmountable odds, can you be sure that the FED’s funny money is safely locked up in its electronic vaults, simply waiting to have foreclosed properties written off against it?

Will all of this freshly printed money really be content to simply die a quiet death, never having run through an ATM or point of sale transaction in the real world?

Oh, fellow taxpayer, we have our doubts.  You should too.  More tomorrow.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

Key Indicators for November 7, 2011

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,796 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,122,700,000,000 RED ALERT!!! THE ANIMALS ARE LEAVING THE ZOO!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,507,600,000,000 YIKES UP $1 Trillion in one year!!!!!!!

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part V – Final Catastrophe and Hope for the Future

10/21/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

As the western world braces for a full scale currency collapse, we have endeavored here at The Mint to offer an explanation as to why these events are taking place and, along the way, offering the obvious solution to the chief problem, mistaking credit for money.  

For those of you who have missed Part I, Part II, Part II, and/or Part IV, you may read them by clicking on the following links:

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part I

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part II – Irony

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part III – Money or Credit?

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part IV – The Catastrophe at Hand

If you require only a brief summary, Part IV above offers a relatively brief and comprehensive summary of the previous three.  Now where were we…

Ah yes, in the United States, circa 1968, a time not so unlike our own.  The Vietnam war was becoming increasingly unpopular and the social climate was ripe for protest.  The US had run up a large and increasing trade deficit with the rest of the world.  It was becoming clear that if foreign dollar holders were to redeem a significant amount of their Federal Reserve Notes, which we now understand to be banknotes and not money proper, for gold, which we now understand to be money proper, the Federal Reserve would not be able to deliver enough gold.

The solution, if it can be called that, was to gradually increase the amount of Federal Reserve Notes required to obtain an ounce of gold from $35 to $41 between 1968 and 1971.  Then, in 1971, with the US dollar collapsing in value and the Bretton Woods system falling apart at the seams, then President of the United States Richard Nixon announced that US dollars were no longer convertible into gold.  The event is now referred to as the Nixon Shock.

And a shock it was.  The US dollar, the benchmark of Central Bank currencies throughout the world, was now officially backed only by the faith that it would continue to be accepted in trade.  The Federal Reserve had defaulted.

Most of the world still lives by this faith today, and if anything, the delusion that a banknote issued by a Central Bank which has defaulted on its obligation to deliver real money on demand has only grown.

The reason that the large scale catastrophe of modern Central Banking lies before us is that over the last 40 years, the lack of gold and silver to back the banknotes in circulation has been replaced by the expectation that governments, and by extension their subjects (citizens), will produce enough goods and perform enough services to repay the obligations represented by the banknotes. As the unrestricted quantity of banknotes and obligations to deliver banknotes in existence will always tend to exceed the stock of available goods and services, these obligations are impossible to satisfy.

Human beings are fallible.  It is normal and should be expected that they will not be able to deliver on certain obligations.  The natural beauty of banknotes redeemable in gold and silver was that, if it was suspected or observed that a person or entity would be unable to pay their obligations, the creditor would move to seize the gold, silver, or other assets that the debtor had pledged as collateral.

The seizure of collateral or the threat of seizure was often enough to correct the failed human action or decisions that were leading to the net loss of wealth incurred by the activity which was undertaken.  In economic parlance, we would call this the correction of the malinvestment of resources.

Without gold and silver to act as a natural limitation on the supply of banknotes and other forms of credit, the bad decisions that lead to the malinvestment and the activities that lead to the destruction of wealth and resources can continue for a very long time.

The use of gold and silver as money had another, more important function that is often overlooked.  Gold and silver are inert, non-consumable objects.  Their hoarding and use as money will not generally cause starvation or want.  In fact, the hoarding of gold and silver as money would have the effect of lowering general prices as productivity increased, naturally creating an incentive to decrease production which in turn would raise prices, making the expenditure of more silver and gold necessary and in turn raise prices, creating a natural  incentive to produce.

Gold and silver allow the economy to naturally regulate itself and, by virtue of the difficulty in extracting them, cause the rest of the earth’s resources to be used in harmony with each other.

Finally, gold and silver are inanimate objects.  Their recognition and possible seizure as collateral does not threaten the liberty or life of a person.  However, because modern central banking has replaced money proper and placed credit in its place, it will become increasingly common to entire societies held as security for a debt that many of them had no direct hand in creating. This is the logical end of using credit as money.

It is the truth that will bring tragedy to the earth.

Without the natural counterbalance to trade and growth which gold and silver money had provided for over 9,000 years, man’s activities, whether productive or destructive, have continued nearly unchecked for the past 40 years.  It is staggering to think of the catastrophe that awaits if man is truly on the path to destruction.

Man, by nature, is always on the path of destruction, but the use of gold and silver as money served to correct him before he strayed too far down it.

Most people alive today have been trained to believe that using Gold and Silver as money is an unnecessary and environmentally harmful process.  Even Adam Smith believed that if the effort expended to mine metals to create money could be directed to other, more useful activities, that humanity would be better off.

What Smith did not realize was that man would not always direct its energies to useful activities.  Like modern Socialists, he underestimated the power of self interest inherent in all human action.  Today we are preparing to reap the consequences of 40 years of unrestricted and more often misguided human actions.

While it may be too late to avoid the catastrophe that Modern Central Banking may bring upon us, it is comforting to know that a return to the understanding and use of gold and silver as money offers hope for a future of truly infinite possibilities.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

P.S.  For more ideas and commentary please check out The Mint at www.davidmint.com

Key Indicators for October 21, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $3.23
Oil Price per Barrel:  $87.40

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.49
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.20%

FED Target Rate:  0.07%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,642 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.00%
Unemployment Rate:  9.1%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.3%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  11,809  

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,056,000,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,570,500,000,000 YIKES UP $1 Trillion in one year!!!!!!!

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part IV – The Catastrophe at Hand

10/20/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

For those of you who have missed Part I, Part II, and/or Part III, you may read them by clicking on the following links:

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part I

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part II – Irony

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part III – Money or Credit?

Again, for those of you who are too lazy to click the links, here we offer a brief summary to get you up to speed:

 

Central Banking is the physical expression of Man’s need to safeguard his wealth and to increase trade.  A Central Bank’s usefulness and scope were greatly increased when dual entry accounting could be employed to manage a Central Bank’s accounts.

 

The Central Bank’s role as a storehouse of wealth has generally attracted the attention of the Government, which is the physical expression of Man’s need to protect his life.  The Government, in this capacity, does not generate wealth and must maintain itself either by taxing its subjects or borrowing funds.

 

The Central Bank, as the repository of wealth and facilitator of trade, by default creates a majority of the banknotes which circulate in a society.  As such, the Central Bank becomes the natural creditor of the Government.  Whether it lends funds directly to the Government or indirectly, the result is the same.  That result is that the use of its subject’s wealth by the Government is greatly facilitated by the existence of a Central Bank.

 

Having established the fact that some form of both a Government and a Central Bank will naturally, in some form, come into existence and become increasingly interdependent, the only question is one of the size and scope of such entities.

 

Today, that the scale of modern Central Banking is excessive and that the potential for catastrophe is unprecedented.

 

The reason for the unprecedented scope of Central Banking is that money, as it is widely understood today, does not really exist.  Rather, banknotes issued by Central Banks, which are by definition credit instruments, are misunderstood to be money proper by a majority of the people in the developed and semi-developed world.

 

This misunderstanding flies in the face of 9,000 years of human history, in which Gold and Silver in bar and coin form have been tacitly used as money proper.  It is this misunderstanding which has set the stage for the greatest catastrophe in history to occur.

Federal Reserve Notes Begin toReplace Gold and Silver as the concept of Money for a Generation
 

The misunderstanding of money and credit began, like many experiments, in Northern Europe with the establishment of the Bank of Amsterdam.  Established in 1609, the Bank of Amsterdam is widely recognized as at least a precursor to modern central banks.  For over 400 years since it was established, the use of banknotes issued by a Central Bank which are not directly convertible to coin has slowly but steadily increased.

 

Modern Central banks issuing banknotes were subsequently formed in Europe, England, and Japan.  As these Central banks and their successors began to slowly absorb the true money supply and issue banknotes in their place, man began to slowly transfer the concept of money proper from Gold and Silver and attribute the qualities of money to the banknotes issued by the Central Bank.

 

This process of wealth absorption greatly accelerated in 1913 when the United States of America granted a 100 year charter to its third Central Bank, the Federal Reserve.  The FED, as it is commonly known, was to act primarily as a reserve and to create “money” (read banknotes) as necessary.  At the advent of World War I, the FED stepped in and issued bonds to finance the war and after the war the FED was granted exclusive control of the money supply in the United States.

 

In 1933, in the midst of what was to be the great depression in the US, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 6102 which required citizens to deliver all but a small amount of gold coin and bullion held by them to the FED in exchange for $20.67 worth of Federal Reserve notes (the banknotes issued by the FED) per ounce.

 

Naturally, most citizens with large quantities of gold at the time had it transferred to Switzerland.

 

Then, by decree, the Government raised the price of redeeming gold from the FED to $35 per ounce.  Redemption could only be made by Foreign parties as, naturally, it was now illegal for US Citizens to own gold.

 

Federal Reserve notes were now the only form of “money” that an entire generation of Americans were likely to handle.  However, foreigners could still redeem the Federal Reserve notes for gold, though they rarely did, at $35 per ounce.

 

After World War II, the US emerged as the most powerful nation on earth.  It was only natural that the western governments would peg their currencies at a fixed exchange rate to the US dollar (Federal Reserve Note) which was redeemable in gold at $35 per ounce.  This is commonly known as the Bretton Woods system.

 

The system held together for around 20 years, accepting that $35 US Dollars were as good as gold until 1968, when things began to get dangerous…

 

Stay tuned and  Trust Jesus.

 

Stay Fresh!

 

David Mint
 

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for October 20, 2011

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,622 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,056,000,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,570,500,000,000 YIKES UP $1 Trillion in one year!!!!!!!

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part II – Irony

10/17/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…
For those of you who have missed or long since forgotten Part I, please take a moment to review it here:
Our tale continues:
As the Fixed income markets continue to crumble, all eyes in Finance are now on a summit of European leaders that will take place next Sunday, when many persons will be watching sporting events, enjoying the outdoors, protesting, or toiling to eke out a meager existence on this earth.
What happens in Europe next Sunday may be simply another act in the game of extend and pretend that until now has been the only strategy employed by Western governments and their Central Banks in response to the bankruptcy of the world’s largest banks and governments.
On the other hand, it may be a Pearl Harbor type of event for the Euro and other currencies.
Since we do not know what will befall mankind this coming Sunday, we must endeavor to understand how the Western world has arrived at this critical juncture in history.  We began last week, by exploring the often underestimated contribution of Luca Pacioli to the commonwealth of society:  The dissemination of Dual Entry Accounting methods used in Genoa, Florence, and Venice circa 1492.
Today, we will explore the great irony that Dual Entry Accounting – what we call man’s greatest innovation, has made possible what we are calling man’s greatest catastrophe, Modern Central Banking.
In order to do this, we begin with a brief history and explanation of the concept of Central Banking and its relationship to government.
The concept of Central Banking is rooted in man’s need for security as well as his recognition of his co-dependence on his fellow man to increase his well being through trade.  It takes time and energy to obtain and protect wealth.  It also takes time and energy to barter with counterparties while trading differing goods without a suitable means of exchange.
A bank, in its simplest form, provides a secure place to store wealth.  A natural extension of this activity is for the banker to extend credit and act as a clearing house for commerce by assuming a de facto role as an issuer of currency in the form of banknotes which represent a claim on wealth held at their bank.  The existence and circulation of these banknotes greatly facilitated trade.
As trade and consequently the wealth of mankind increased both in volume and geographical reach, there was increasingly a need for a larger banking interest to store the excess wealth of the individual banks and to honor the banknotes emitted by the individual banks.  This larger banking interest, formed by and for the benefit of the individual banks, is what we today call a Central Bank.
The complexity of maintaining banking accounts was greatly facilitated and made possible on a large scale by the use of dual entry accounting.  The ability for individual banks to maintain accounts on a larger scale made possible the existence of a Central Bank to act as a clearing house amongst banks.  Hence, our premise that Dual entry accounting enabled Central banking.

Now, on to the role of Government in relation to Central Banking.  If Central Banks arose because man needed someone to look after his wealth, governments arose because man needed someone to look after his life.  Governments were formed in response to the natural human need for a common defense.

It is not hard, then, to imagine that Governments, in whatever form, relied heavily upon and supported the formation of both individual banks and Central Banks.
Why would Governments need banks and Central banks?
Governments are generally given license by the members of society to use whatever means necessary to preserve their lives.  As such, they assume the role as the apparatus of compulsion and coercion in that society.
As the apparatus of compulsion and coercion, the government, by definition, cannot generate wealth.  At best, it can only create the conditions under which individuals may create wealth, but the activities of government as a provider of security never directly create wealth.  Because they cannot create wealth, they must either borrow from or tax the populace in order to fund their activities of compulsion and coercion.
The Central Bank, as the ultimate repository of wealth, offers a convenient source of both credit and, in a later wave of Central Banks of which the Federal Reserve is a prime example, tax collection services.
Storage of Wealth and Tax Collection Service provided with a smile
As you can see, a Central Bank is an indispensible institution both for individuals in terms of storing wealth and facilitating trade, as well as for Governments who have an insatiable need for tax revenues and credit.
The existence of a Central Bank, for all of the benefits that it may bestow, unwittingly makes the wealth of those it serves a natural target for those who are anxious to obtain that wealth through unjust means.
Central Banking, like alcohol and socialism, may be a good idea when used in moderation.  However, each one of these also represents a catastrophe waiting to happen.  For if the circumstances under which they are created or used take an unfavorable turn, the wealth and lives of many may be lost in a very short period of time.
Needless to say, the scale of modern Central Banking is beyond what would be advisable, and the potential for catastrophe is unprecedented.
How, when, and most importantly why will this catastrophe take place?  We can only answer the why, and we will tackle it tomorrow as we are spent.
Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.
Stay Fresh!
Key Indicators for October 17, 2011
Copper Price per Lb: $3.35
Oil Price per Barrel:  $86.24
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,671 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,201,800,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,554,000,000,000 YIKES UP $1 Trillion in one year!!!!!!!

Dual Entry Accounting – Man’s Greatest Innovation, Modern Central Banking – Man’s Greatest Catastrophe – Part I

10/13/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

As we alluded to yesterday, the Federal Reserve’s latest attempt to goose the economy, “Operation Twist,” is not only failing to achieve its stated goals, it is also triggering an unmitigated disaster in the fixed income markets.  These markets, once the bedrock of global finance, have now been conditioned to do nothing more than attempt to front run the FED and other Central Banks up and down the yield curve.

To continue our waterbed analogy, it is akin to a 300 pound Ben Bernanke (Central Banks) chasing an 800 pound gorilla (the market) around on a queen sized waterbed.  The action is becoming completely unpredictable and downright dangerous.

Today, as the chaos continues to unfold, we want to take a moment to examine how humanity has arrived at this critical juncture in history, where a fat man chasing a gorilla on a waterbed can threaten to damage the wealth of nearly everyone on the planet.

In order to understand this, we must travel back to the year 1492.  Venice is the center of the western world and Christopher Columbus has set sail to find a new trade route to India.  A Franciscan monk by the name of Luca Pacioli sits in his room and creates the outline for:  Summa de Arithmetica, Geometrica, Proportioni et Proportionale.

Summa de Arithmetica, Geometrica, Proportioni et Proportionale - Pacioli's great gift to Western Civilization

As part of what would have otherwise been simply another boring textbook on Mathematics, Pacioli sees fit to include a section on “Details of Accounting and Recording” in which he described the accounting practices used in Venice at the time.  When Summa was published in 1494, it contained what is recognized as the first complete description of dual entry accounting.

To be clear, accounting in some way, shape, or form has always been practiced.  What Pacioli accomplished, perhaps unwittingly, was to disseminate throughout Europe the accounting method which had made the merchants in Genoa, Florence, and Venice the most successful in the Western World.

What makes dual entry accounting so special?  Dual entry accounting, in a nutshell, is the formal recognition that every trade has a net affect on the income statement and balance sheet of an individual or enterprise.

More to the point, it enabled merchants and producers to understand which activities created wealth and therefore make informed decisions regarding which activities to undertake with their limited time and resources.

While this now seems intuitive, it is hard to overstate the benefits that the dissemination and use of dual entry accounting has bestowed on Western Civilization by enabling a greater number of persons to engage in activities which increase the capital stock and allowing them to more quickly abandon activities which deplete the capital stock (accumulated wealth) of society.

This facilitation of wealth generating activities is why dual entry accounting may be considered man’s greatest innovation.

Yet, in perhaps the greatest irony since God sending His Son, Jesus, to die in our place, dual entry accounting enabled the existence of what we are calling man’s greatest catastrophe, Modern Central Banking.

We’ll explain this great irony tomorrow in Part II.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for October 13, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $3.31
Oil Price per Barrel:  $84.61

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.38  
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.17%

FED Target Rate:  0.07%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,667 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.00%
Unemployment Rate:  9.1%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.4%!!!   UP UP UP!!!
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  11,478  

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,201,800,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,554,000,000,000 YIKES UP $1 Trillion in one year!!!!!!!