Monday, January 29, 2007

The penny, the nickel, copper and another sign of the debasement of our currency

We have become accustomed to hearing about the "consumer price index" as THE barometer of inflation. Because CPI has been tame since the Reagan administration, the American public has not been concerned. Meanwhile, the debasement of the United States dollar continues. The American voter and consumer, under the tutelage of the MSM/DNC, has misunderstood such warning signs as the stock market bubble of the late 1990's and the real estate bubble that now seems to be in the early stages of bursting.

Occasionally, we see the effects of the currency debasement in such stories as this one, which discusses the need to "rebase" the penny because the copper has become more valuable than the face amount of the coin itself:
Sharply rising prices of metals such as copper and nickel have meant the face value of pennies and nickels are worth less than the material that they are made of, increasing the risk that speculators could melt the coins and sell them for a profit.

Five year copper price - H/T

Metals prices rise for a number of reasons, including worldwide economic changes. But another important factor is the ongoing currency debasement that steadily percolates its way through the economy. These price increases are inevitable where the government pays its limitless bills by inflating the currency. Chicago Federal Reserve senior economist Francois Velde draws a historical parallel that would escape the attention of the general public because the events happen over the course of decades:
"These factors suggest that, sooner or later, the penny will join the farthing (one-quarter of a penny) and the hapenny (one-half of a penny) in coin museums."

The destruction of western currencies has been a long process. Except for the 1970's, it has gone on almost unnoticed. Government fine tuning of pennies (or elimination of the "hapenny") is only one signpost on the road to financial ruin.

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