Archive | March, 2013

Jon Matonis on Bitcoin and crypto-currencies

29 Mar

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While trying to find out as much as I can about the BitCoin revolution, for my latest GoldMoney podcast I throw every conspiracy theory I could think of at Jon Matonis – of the BitCoin Foundation, and also a writer for Forbes magazine – and he comes up smelling of digitally encrypted roses…

Episode 118: GoldMoney’s Andy Duncan talks to Jon Matonis of the Bitcoin Foundation who is also a contributor to Forbes Magazine. They discuss Bitcoin’s latest price spike and whether crypto-currencies are a credible alternative as a medium of exchange.

Though the price for Bitcoins has risen from $15 to $95 at the time of the podcast, Matonis does not think that it is a speculative bubble. With a fixed supply of Bitcoin and rising demand – in part due to fears related to Cyprus — surging prices are only logical. As there is no futures market for bitcoins yet, there is no leverage, which makes Bitcoin also suitable for investment purposes.

They discuss whether Bitcoin could become a serious rival to precious metals when it comes to alternatives to national currencies. He points to the complimentary nature of physical bullion and Bitcoin. While Bitcoin has advantages in the digital world, nothing beats the security of tangible metal as it is not reliant on the existence of electricity and internet connectivity.

Matonis sees a bright future in crypto-currencies and especially values its possible impact on capital controls and taxes. For Bitcoin the important question will be whether it will be introduced by big merchants and whether governments will impose regulation against such acceptance.

This podcast was recorded on 28 March 2013.

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GoldMoney podcast: David Howden on Europe and fiat currency

28 Mar

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I speak to the excellent Professor David Howden about the future of the euro, how Cyprus changed everything, and what’s happening in Iceland…

Episode 117: The GoldMoney Foundation’s Andy Duncan talks to David Howden; Chair of the Department of Business and Economics, associate professor of economics at St. Louis University and co-author of Deep Freeze. They discuss the debt crisis in Europe and the race to the bottom between fiat currencies.

Howden thinks that the Euro will hold together in the short term, but he is rather pessimistic on the long term outlook of the common currency. One at a time countries which were formerly regarded as “stable” are being dragged into the debt hole. Though he assesses the problems in the United States to be even greater than Europe’s, he points out that whenever Euro fears start to creep up the US is benefiting due to the depth of its Treasury market.

They go on to talk about the situation in Iceland and Ireland, bank bailouts and the adverse effects of capital controls. With regards to the possibility of a global fiat currency Howden states that such a push would only happen under American involvement which he deems unlikely. Both men express their hopes that the coming currency crisis will make visible the flaws of monopolised money and lead to popular demand for the idea of competing currencies.

This podcast was recorded on 22 March 2013.

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GoldMoney podcast: Thorsten Polleit on the gold standard that never was

28 Mar

Thorsten Polleit GoldMoney

The distinguished and forthright Professor Thorsten Polleit explains why we’ve failed to see a real free market money for several hundred years…

Episode 115: Professor Thorsten Polleit, whom recently founded Polleit & Riechert, an investment management company, is an economist who specialises in the Austrian School of Economics, sits with Andy Duncan at the Austrian Economics Research Conference 2013.

Thorsten delivered a speech at the conference entitled “The gold standard that never was.” This speech, which is discussed, details the conditions Thorsten sees as being necessary for a gold standard to be compatible with free market principles.

Thorsten is an advocate of a 100% commodity backed currency and explains how this would work with regards to the banking system.

No central banking, no tender legal laws and no government involvement in the monetary system; radical ideas or a sensible approach based on the axioms of human action.

Professor Polleit leaves us with a lot to ponder.

This podcast was recorded on 22 March 2013.

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GoldMoney podcast: Harry C. Veryser: It didn´t have to be this way: Why Boom and Bust is Unnecessary

27 Mar

Harry C. Veryser GoldMoney

Using the cunning expedient of discovering non-Austrian quotes (such as those by Keynes, Soros, and Krugman) to outline and agree with Austrian concepts, Harry C. Veryser discusses his new book, published by the Mises Institute…

Episode 114: Harry C. Veryser, who has written the book “It didn´t have to be this way: Why Boom and Bust is Unnecessary – and How the Austrian School of Economics Breaks the Cycle sits down with Andy Duncan from the GoldMoney Foundation.

Both men are in attendance at the Austrian Economics Research Conference 2013, held at Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama.

Harry started writing his book in 2006 and realised that the impending crisis was going to rattle the world and could be explained from the perspective of the Austrian School of economics. Cleverly, as the crisis took hold, Harry was aware that he could find quotes from people, not from the Austrian school but who unwittingly affirmed concepts of Austrian economics.

Harrys´ book also attacks Positivism – which is the attempt to use the physical sciences as a model for social sciences. He examines the shortfalls of using this theory with regards to economics forecasting.

The second part of his book details how we got to where we are today. Harry reminisces about his upbringing in Detroit and then discusses what he sees as an end of the progressive era.

Lastly Harry shares his thoughts on the nature of human action bringing together the wisdom of Aristotle, Aquinas to Mises before tackling the thorny issue of Cyprus and the possible end of the Euro and why it may not necessarily be a bad thing.

This podcast was recorded on 21 March 2013.

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GoldMoney podcast: Matthew McCaffrey: Austro Marxists – who are they

27 Mar

Matthew McCaffrey GoldMoney

Short & sweet, I speak to the charming and highly intelligent Matthew McCaffrey, a phD student of Professor Guido Hülsmann at the University of Angers, about their new book, A Theory of Money and Fiduciary Media, a centennial book to celebrate the 1912 publication of Von Mises’s A Theory of Money and Credit, a pivotal book of the Austrian School, which marked the public beginnings of Professor Mises’s brilliance…

Episode 113: From the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, on behalf of the GoldMoney Foundation, Andy Duncan speaks with Matthew McCaffrey, editor of Libertarian Papers, and a pHD student at the University of Angers in France.

McCaffery recently contributed to the new book, Theory of Money and Fiduciary Media in which he expresses an historical appreciation of Ludwig van Mises and the role that some British schools of thought may have had on influencing his work.

Other chapters of the book, which was published in 2012 to commemorate the centennial of Mises’ Theory of Money and Credit, are discussed, paying tribute to the economic themes that Mises´ contributed to.

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GoldMoney podcast: Tom DiLorenzo on big government

26 Mar

Tom DiLorenzo

A fascinating interview with Tom DiLorenzo, in which we discuss his new book, Organized Crime, which discusses how government insinuates itself into free market society…

Episode 112: Today’s theme is gangsters and government as Tom James DiLorenzo, an American economics professor at Loyola University Maryland, discusses his new book Organized Crime, with Andy Duncan.

DiLorenzo, who identifies himself as an adherent of the Austrian School of economics has published many books including 2 on Abraham Lincoln.

With 32 years of research and essays as an economic professor, DiLorenzo decided to go through his work, bring what was needed, up to date and then gather the papers together in one book that deals with such topics as decentralisation of power, workers and unions and money and the state.

DiLorenzo expounds his view on the corrupting nature of nationalised banking systems. Beginning with a fascinating look back to President Hamilton and the war bonds of the American Revolutionary War onwards to the creation of central banks to assist government motivations.

Moving to the present, Duncan asks DiLorenzo about the todays Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSE´s) and their contribution to today’s malaise.

DiLorenzo then discusses what he would do to eliminate some of the problems facing modern economies and what he thinks the current US administration will actually do going forward and the possible consequences.

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GoldMoney podcast: Tom Woods questions modern money

25 Mar

Tom Woods for GoldMoney

While I was at the Austrian Economics Research Conference, in Auburn, I had the great pleasure of speaking to Tom Woods. I questioned him about his thoughts on the ‘Greenbacker’ movement, a group of people who want to end the power of the Federal Reserve, to give money printing power directly to the U.S. government instead. As the Americans say, go figure…

Episode 111: Best selling author, historian and www.libertyclassroom.com founder, Tom Woods speaks with GoldMoney Foundations’ Andy Duncan at the Austrian Economics Research Conference 2013 in Auburn Alabama.

Tom spells out his case on why he thinks The Greenbackers are wrong, also a subject of a paper discussed at this years conference. His clear and concise arguments are a pleasure to listen to and he seems to be able to cut through so much of the inconsistencies in the arguments, of those in favour of a debt based monetary system.

If the dollar is great, why does it need monopoly protection? Tom intelligently questions the current status and what needs to change. A hardworking intellectual whom is doing what he can to educate and inform people about the subject of money. Something which is so fundamentally important to our lives but not given much thought.

This podcast was recorded on 22 March 2013.

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