Gold and silver: The states' new currency?
States aren't allowed to coin money. They can issue gold and silver, though, and some are talking about actually doing it.
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I have directed Secretary Connally to suspend temporarily the convertibility of the dollar into gold… Now, what is this action – which is very technical – what does it mean for you?Skip to next paragraph
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Let me lay to rest the bugaboo of what is called “devaluation.”
If you want to buy a foreign car or take a trip abroad, market conditions may cause your dollar to buy slightly less. But if you are among the overwhelming majority of Americans who buy American-made products in America, your dollar will be worth just as much tomorrow as it is today. (Emphasis supplied.)
President Nixon called the suspension “temporary,” but it has been anything but temporary…and the dollar has suffered as a result.
The dollar today is worth less than a quarter was worth in 1971. And yet, Washington has been curiously unresponsive to the suffering brought by Nixon’s failed promise. Why? Because Washington, itself, has been a primary beneficiary of monetary depreciation.
The federal government spent $15 billion from 1789-1900. Not $15 billion a year. $15 billion cumulatively. Uncle Sam will spend $10 billion per day in 2011. The federal government spends more every two days than it did altogether for more than America’s first century. Although these sums are not adjusted for inflation, they give a correct impression of the magnitude of the change from what our Founders set forth and our early statesmen delivered.
How does Washington get its hands on so much money? Three ways. Taxation, borrowing and printing dollars. The third mechanism is usually the easiest road…at least for a while. Almost no one complains about printing dollars because almost no one feels the resulting consequences directly or immediately.
The power to print money at whim is wrong. It is toxic to our personal and national wellbeing. And it is unconstitutional.
No wonder that legislators in twelve states are considering issuing their own gold-based currencies. By doing so, these states are challenging the federal abuse of an unconstitutional power – challenging the issuance of unhinged paper money.
Federal officials should take these state initiatives as a cue. Federal officials have sworn to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. Let them take their oath seriously and restore the convertibility of dollars to gold.
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