Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Cash and Uncertainty

"Machines will stop spitting cash. It's gonna be the end of the world, Bill."
--Julie Steinhardt (Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps)

Interesting points made here by Gary North on the subject of monetary liberty, several of which I hope to return to in future posts. The one I wanted to reflect on briefly is this: "Cash is a substitute for knowledge about the future."

Stated differently, the higher the perceived uncertainty about the future, the greater the desire for cash.

Cash is a proxy for economic resources. When we feel uncomfortable about what lies ahead, we want more economic resources on hand in order to cope with what might transpire. Building cash in this context is the financial equivalent of 'prepping.'

Problematically, modern monetary systems, because of their inherent leverage, are incapable of satisfying large desires for cash without the system freezing solid and causing what North calls a 'break in the payments system.'

Governments know this. As such, much state action must be oriented toward trying to instill a sense of stability and confidence among the masses. The minute (or in the case of biblical Jerusalem, the hour) this perception of stability is lost, then the charade is over.

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