Thursday, May 7, 2015
Gold and Portability Part III
"Money, According to Aristotle "must be Durable, Constant, Divisible, Portable and with Intrinsic Value."
Aristotle, as an Athenian Private Citizen, was analyzing the characteristics money must have in order help the Athenian City-State comprised of and ruled by Athenian Private Citizens achieve and maintain the most prized virtues of Independence, Autonomy and Prosperity for both the Private Citizen, and the State.
Money is useful to the Private Citizen as a store of wealth and a medium of exchange. As a store of wealth Money keeps the Citizen Autonomous and not reliant on the state for sanctioned value. As a medium of exchange money allows the State - and the Citizen - to grow and prosper.
To store wealth money must be durable and constant and have intrinsic value. As a medium of exchange it must be Divisible.
The virtue of Portability is not immediately obvious.. But Portability is the key to both the Storing of Wealth and the process of exchange.
In order for the Private Citizen to store his wealth it must be convenient to hide, protect, and carry this wealth. It can not be too big or too small. Too light or too heavy. Too obvious. Clearly, to store a large amount of money the Private Citizen needs some sort of vault or safe or hiding place. Yet this too must be convenient within reason. And in order to exchange the money the Private Citizen must be able to transport it in a fairly convenient and discreet manner.
Gold bullion fulfills all of these criteria. Yet Historical Gold Coins and Medals fulfill the criteria of Portability even more efficiently as they provide a far more discreet - and Portable - form of money than bullion.
Bullion is easily identified. Every piece varies only according to weight and purity. Otherwise it is entirely fungible - which makes it ideal as money, but also easier for a predatory State to control. Historical gold coins and medals are highly individual pieces - difficult to identify and classify without a degree of expertise. This makes them more difficult to value - but mush easier for the Citizen to control.
With Historical Gold coins and medals tremendous Intrinsic Value can be stored, and transported in very small, discreet and efficient packages. Nobody need know what you have, where you keep it, and how you exchange it, unless you so desire.
True, if it needs to be converted into State Controlled money it can be abused by the State at the point of conversion. So it is best to avoid that particular type of conversion while the State is most engaged in predatory behavior.
While it is also true the Intrinsic Values of Historical Gold is not entirely Constant - neither is it so with State Controlled Money - the value of which fluctuates wildly as stability erodes. One need only to monitor foreign exchange markets during period of extreme turbulence to see how unstable State Controlled Money can be.
In an advanced economy, Money - in conceptual form - can be transported and stored conceptually. - either by written contract, or electronically. In fact, as far as the State is now concerned it ought at all times to be transported and stored electronically. But once Money has been converted into Electronic form, the Private Citizen loses all capacity to hide, protect and even exchange his Money as he desires.
He loses portability.
Like a Helpless Child, he is entirely at the mercy of the State for all types of storage and transactions. He needs permission to use his Money. He is perpetually dependent on the State for the protection of his Money. And he relies on the Good Faith of the State not to confiscate his money.
Now it will be argued that an advanced economy can not conduct business with any other than an electronic form on money without severely limiting the potential of the economy. This seems obvious to Statist Champions of State Controlled Money.
The fact is that State Money can co-exist with Private Citizen Money as long as there is convertability from electronic form into had asset form. Into Gold..
There is not enough gold in the world to convert in a Complex Modern Economies, the Statists aver.
The truth is, the amount of gold is irrelevant. Any amount can be converted to suit any size economy - at the right Price.
Well, they say, It's certainly not at all convenient for the State to have to provide convertability simply to suit the needs of the Private Citizen.
No it's not. But as we enter into an era when the State can no longer provide economic stability, they will no longer be able to dictate the form of money - except by means of armed force against their own Private Citizens.
Hopefully it will not come to that.