Warum gibt es etwas und nicht nichts? (Why is there something rather than nothing?) - Leibniz

Saturday, June 20, 2009

US Public debt vs. gold

Still trying to see the debt mountain in context... So let's see how hard it would be to pay off in gold, assuming that in 1791 a single "bag" of gold would have cleared the account.

For the first 70 years, the gold-priced public debt was always less than twice its 1791 level, and often below the starting point.

Now to see the progress of the public debt since 1860:

... and second, since 1945:

These pictures seem to indicate the influence of:

(a) two world wars

(b) the closure of the "gold window" in 1971

(c) monetary expansion since the 1980s

(d) the Grand Bust of 2000, NOT 2007, and the consequent flight to commodities

- and on this way of measuring the catastrophe, we're 50% worse off than at the end of WWII - plus we're not rebuilding the economy, we're doing the reverse.

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