Ron Paul: Krugman’s Trillion Dollar Coin is NOT Real Wealth




by Ron Paul

Last week President Obama bluntly warned Congress that he will not negotiate when it comes to raising the statutory debt limit.  If Republicans attempt to use a debt ceiling vote to win concessions on spending from the White House, Mr. Obama threatens simply to raise the limit by executive order or other unilateral action.

This is business as usual in Washington.  Democrats literally do not believe we have a deficit and debt problem, and reliably propose greater borrowing and spending.  Republicans talk a good game when it comes to government debt, but have no credibility to argue against deficits or abuses of executive power.  Brinksmanship ensues, and ugly compromises are reached at the 11th hour.  We all lose as the endless borrowing and money printing further erode our dollar and our economy.

Keep in mind that the federal government relentlessly spends about $100 billion more each month than it collects in taxes. This means roughly 40% of every dollar Washington spends is borrowed, to be “paid back” only in highly devalued, newly created money. Ultimately this can only lead to the destruction of the US dollar, as history plainly teaches.  But in the face of this reality Obama just shrugs, turning to demagoguery and talk of little old ladies’ Social Security checks . Like Obama, far too many Americans view federal debt as a nonissue.  Consider Paul Krugman, America’s most reliable Keynesian economist and a beloved figure among mainstream journalists.  He recently wrote an article about the debt limit issue, in which he discussed a controversial proposal to have the federal government simply create a platinum coin with a face value of $1 trillion:

“Here’s how it would work: The Treasury would mint a platinum coin with a face value of $1 trillion (or many coins with smaller values; it doesn’t really matter). This coin would immediately be deposited at the Federal Reserve, which would credit the sum to the government’s account. And the government could then write checks against that account, continuing normal operations without issuing new debt.”

To be fair, Mr. Krugman acknowledges that minting such a coin would be an accounting “trick,” but he is dead serious about this option for the Obama administration.  This then is the state of modern economics discourse in America, where a respected New York Times economist literally can propose creating “money for nothing” and have the idea taken seriously.

Krugman’s suggestion is just another variant of the endless stimulus proposals, which purport to create greater aggregate demand in the economy by creating more money.  Whether this is done by the Fed or the Treasury is of little importance, as long as government is creating demand-side “growth,” however artificial.

But in just a few short sentences Professor Hans-Hermann Hoppe eviscerates the Krugmans of the world by pointing out the obvious: If governments or central banks really can create wealth simply by creating money, why does poverty exist anywhere on earth?  Why haven’t successive rounds of quantitative easing by the US Fed solved our economic recession?  And if Fed money creation really works, and doesn’t create inflation, why haven’t Americans gotten richer as the money supply has grown?

The truth is obvious to everyone.  Fiat currency is not wealth, and the creation of more fiat dollars does not mean that more rice, steel, soybeans, Ipads, or Honda Accords suddenly come into existence.  The creation of new fiat currency simply strengthens a fantasy balance sheet, either by adding to cash reserves or servicing debt.  But this balance sheet wealth is an illusion, just as the notion we can continue to raise the debt limit and borrow money forever is an illusion.

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253 Comments:

  1. trillion dollar coin will just make the dollar worth less

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  2. trillion dollar coin will just make the dollar worth less

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  3. What a guy

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  4. Obama is a dictator. Impeach NOW.

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  5. does anyone have an opinion on tally sticks?

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  6. how bout some tally sticks!?

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  7. Well it's obvious that the common college education is not enough for americans to understand their own money matters which is why politicians can tell them any bullshit they want because they keep buying into a fairy tale and signing the ballot and bailout

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  8. Well it's obvious that the common college education is not enough for americans to understand their own money matters which is why politicians can tell them any bullshit they want because they keep buying into a fairy tale and signing the ballot and bailout

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  9. Technically, no form of money is fundamentally wealth. It is just that some are a better store of value than others. What good is money if there is no bread to buy?

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  10. There are already gold coins. But there are also legal tender laws, capital gains taxes and a federal reserve issuing fiat currency and monatising the largest relative and actual government debt in economic history.

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  11. money is anything that is agreed to have value. A fiat currency can be ok when it isnt manipulated by banks and governments!

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  12. this platinum coin would weigh 22000 tons not enough above ground platinum to create it so we are still screwed

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  13. some states have drawn up legislation to allow gold and silver as legal tender sad to say i dont live in any of those states

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  14. I don't understand it I do see some value in it for trade

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  15. when the commander in chief dictates to accomplish his agenda you have a dictator

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  16. I bought some platinum when it fell to $1400 and below I also have some of everything you have listed

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  17. The Federal Government has made that illegal.

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  18. because im assuming he doesnt have enough gold to issue to everybody with gold coins....he would need to have trillions of dollars worth of gold in his possesion and then be willing to give it all away for free

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  19. Thefts will be thefts, liars will be liars,,criminal government is nothing but today, yet the puppets swear this theft in again.Oath of criminal deceptions.What the hell is the real problems here, blind puppet society that thrives on rewarding failure..Go save us from this O-Abomination..

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  20. This trillion dollar coin idea is the most ridiculous solution to this hellhole we've dug ourselves into. There is NO easy way out of this!

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