Fiscal Insanity: Printing Money Over and Over Again, Expecting Different Results

Money printing; All governments do it eventually. It is their fate…and, so long as we are beholden to them, ours too.

Some, like the Germans, learn from lessons past. They know the woes of hyperinflation…and the political horror to which an economic crisis can lead. And so, they are seen to resist. Against calls today for “monetary easing” in the eurozone, they remain firm. In spite of cries for “loosening,” Frau Merkel holds back on the monetary levers. For now, anyway…

Other governments, like the prattling kleptocrats here in Argentina, prefer to simply ignore history…and with it the laws of economics. Instead, they simply lie, flat out, to their populace. They make statements like, “It is totally false to say that printing more money generates inflation.” And they say this, Fellow Reckoner, with a straight face. No joke! This, from a country that has burned through five currencies in the past 70 years.

Nobody here actually believes their elected officials, of course, but they vote them in anyway…probably under some delusion of “civic duty.” People march down to the ballot box, waving a blue and white flag, banging on casserole dishes and demanding change. Then they carefully replace the old crooks with new crooks, much the same as what happened in the last election in the US. Then, the political class loots the people’s accounts. They make out like bandits, while the rest survive on “futbol para todos.” It’s strange, yes…but it’s the way it goes just the same.

And then there are the Americans north of the Rio Grande, whose government prefers to dress its printing up in fancy names. They try to bamboozle the crowd with academic-sounding terms like Quantitative Easing and Operation Twist. The average man on the street has no idea what these terms mean. But he trusts his Dear Leaders because he is told to trust them. He swore an allegiance to the flag every morning while in school…and he takes this more seriously than his own common sense, long since abandoned.

Republicans…Democrats…Bernanke…Greenspan. No matter. It’s the same people pulling the same old tricks. Aside from faces and names, there is no change. It’s an illusion, designed to make the audience think they have a say in what happens on stage. But the script has already been written. And this is a rerun.

Call it QE, Call it Twist. Call arguments from the opposition “totally false.” In the end, the result is always the same. A shrinking currency…inflation…the ultimate in centrally organized counterfeiting on the grandest of scales.

Joel Bowman
for The Daily Reckoning

The Daily Reckoning