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Yikes - Since you believe that gold is not the wealth preserver I invested in with much smug confidence, well, if that's the case, then your suggestion of......"build a strong family, take care of the family. Join with neighbors in group projects. Keep a wary eye on the weather and on the schemes of rivals. And stay out of debt as much as possible. This means living within one's means."....Investing in the golden rule, Elaine, is exactly the diversified human potential portfolio we all should be whole heartedly investing in.
Thanks for the reminder.

john east

“I lost a number of readers when I suggested that gold is a mere commodity like so many others.”

As a gold bug, I too remember being a little upset when you expressed this sentiment, and I remember the angry comments that it solicited, but those who deleted you from their reading list are the stupid gold bugs, the ones almost guaranteed to lose all their gains as they stay long through the highs, and continue holding all the way down to the next bear low.
I’m still a reader of your blog because I welcome all views, especially those with which I don’t entirely agree, it’s the only way to complete the big picture. However, I still think there is every chance gold will go above $1033 next year because I’m relying on Bernanke doing something incredibly stupid to fight the deflation staring us all in the face. I’ve not worked out yet what the stupid thing might be, but I have great faith that Bernanke will do the wrong things at the worst times in his endeavours to tempt us to spend the money we no longer have.


One more try to convince Elaine to be more circumspect in her attack on gold and silver.

Some people still have cash. They want liquid assets because (1) they realize property is expensive to maintain and when the economy really goes down it is a black hole (unless it is farmland and you can eat off it) (2) everything else is rubbish (stocks are a shell game).

The question is: Where do you put the cash? In a bank? Err...no. The bank may well go bust and you don't know when CDOs are going to blow a hole in any bank's balance sheet. In real cash? Err...no. Cash is as difficult to store as gold, and is still subject to theft. And DEPRECIATES TO HELL when the government starts bailing out every Wall Street idiot who fucked up.

So what do savers do? "Start a family"? You've got to be kidding. That's an EXPENSE.

Start "community groups". Well, yeah, but that's not going to save my money from destruction.

Gold and silver (and precious stones) become highly valued in chaotic times because (1) they have instrinic value (2) they are difficult to forge (3) they have never gone to zero in value to their value not being dependent on the performance of another party (debtor).

These items are like "condensed" wealth, waiting for an opportunity to RE-invest. I wouldn't invest everyhing in gold but it would be MAD to keep all your money in a US bank right now. M. A. D.

Your reasoning is seriously flawed on gold.

I can see that the "system" is threatened by individuals running to gold. But for the INDIVIDUAL there is no other viable safehaven in chaotic times.

It's that simple.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

My children were born both right at the height of two bad economic waves: 1974 and 1981. I was POOR. But had a FUTURE. They were my future!

And they are my future support in my old age. Many people fear the end of Social Security. The goofballs running things are destroying our future Social Security. But my strong children are the ones who will be my Social Security.

This is a fact of history that is UTTERLY unassailable. My family and many others have literally lost everything more than once. I know this is why my family came to the New World on the wings of rebellion in 1660.

The only thing that really sustains us is the family. A strong family survives. Weak ones die when things go wrong.

Running to gold: yes, this was the first wave of inflation. Gold and oil began to climb while housing collapsed. But the dollars that went to gold at the first peak were NOT PROTECTED AT ALL. They were DESTROYED. We can hope that gold shoots back up again and these poor saps recover their losses. But THEY LOST MONEY. Period.

Gold is a commodity. And lord help us all, so is paper money. Gah. This is a terrible thing. Neither should be a simple commodity. Got that? NEITHER of them.

Ditka Butkus

Elaine, great blog.

Point of fact for Forbes on their article: CF Industries (fertilizer company) seems to be confused with Consolidated Freight (transportation), two entirely different companies.


Gold - the third rail of "contrarian" investors

When talking about gold, you will be ostracized if you are not bullish - and even calling gold a "commodity" is blasphemy to many. This is understandable as we all see the systemic failure coming and are desperately looking for a safe haven.

There is more bad advice on the internet about gold than any other investment. I tend to discount bullish advice that does not take into account gold jewelery (over 60% of annual demand) and gold scrap (around 25% of supply).

There can be little doubt that people are getting more liquid as the markets jump up and down in convulsions. This will help the gold market. I own gold and will buy more but I don't really see it as an investment or a commodity. It is a hedge against systemic failure and I think it is evolving as an alternative currency. As Elaine suggests, the failure will probably be a gradual process, thus we may see many false alarms that bump gold up followed by a correction.

I think Jojo's post was right on target - "Investing in the golden rule, Elaine, is exactly the diversified human potential portfolio we all should be whole heartedly investing." I would add to this that we should also be making some lifestyle changes that reduce energy and resource consumption and establish greater self reliance.

Here's a good site for self reliance:

victory gardens & other stuff

Speaking of gold - can any techies in the group suggest how I can best secure my computer to do online gold transactions? This really scares me. I use Norton 360 but am not confident. I found this website in Liechtenstein (a very private country) that offers some software:


Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Oh, one last thing to make your day - "US tax breaks help Jewish settlers in West Bank" JERUSALEM, Aug 25 (Reuters) - The United States says Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank threaten any peace between Israel and the Palestinians -- yet it also encourages Americans to help support settlers by offering tax breaks on donations.


Buffalo Ken

Hey DrKrbyLuv - all the ladies in the world should start demanding jewerly - then the value of all sorts of things will go up.....as long as no-body gets more than their fair share.

Just my opinion. Plus I betcha there are a lot of fellas who would work real hard to get a ring around the right girl!

Other jewelry is nice too.


Buffalo Ken

Or course, I say this with a caveat - i hear the working conditions in gold mines and other mines is a travesty. This must stop. Don't you think?

You can't have one without the other.


The only reason to own gold is because it is artificially suppressed by G-7 central banks. Think about it. Catherine Austin Fitts is the authority on gold and the suppression by Govt. Gold is the competition for bankrupt G-7 fiat currencies. Trichet,Bernanke,etc.. all work together. All are criminals. All claim to fight inflation, when they create it. Its so damn obvious its scary not many people more understand it. When physical supply is gone, and paper price is collpasing. This is an indication the G-7 central banks are hitting the wall with respect to how much more gold they will dump on the market. The Bundesbank said recently that gold sales are not the answer to fix financial problems. "Also of importance is the news that the Bundesbank has reaffirmed its belief in the importance of retaining significant holdings of gold bullion in their monetary reserves.

The Bundesbank has said that gold reserves are more important than before and has rejected calls that it should sell some of its gold reserves to help boost the slowing German economy. The Bundesbank said that financial and political uncertainty make the reserves even more important than before" This is a clear sign that the Gold Pool is breaking up. Just like in the late 60's!!! OWN GOLD, dont be fooled.

Buffalo Ken

Hey, I'd like to be sitting up there on that deck in the picture (if that is what it is) drinking the mead and listening to Nora Jones in the background singing "now you know".


I still like the gold. I especially like the silver. I use it in artwork - i'm thinking of getting into jewelry...what do you think - good business or not?

Buffalo Ken

oh by the way, the deck meant was on another article - shoot - oh well, i still meant it...


Its Springtime for Hitler in America !

Buffalo Ken

G with a period. Please elaborate.

Bear of Little Brain

My tuppence worth on gold. Buy and take delivery and hide the stuff, unless you fancy becoming a trader. Gold is for the paranoid/anxious/terrified (e.g., me). There are any number of ways of 'holding' gold (ETF's, bullionvault.com, etc.), but only physical possession is truly verifiable.
Your Lichtenstein site: if I was going to set up a scam, Lichtenstein would be high on my list of places to consider operating from (with Israel taking top slot). What are the chances that such a site does not build in 'backdoors' to its software or that the site is not itself a lure? Not to mention the heat that has been coming down on Lichtenstein from the EU lately. Very dodgy. I don't even trust my operating system - the most obvious gateway - but, then, I'm no computer buff.
Another problem with not having physical possession is that it is only too easy to hit a button and close out one's holding. The recent drop in gold (and silver) was pretty gut-wrenching, but it is the nature of these metals. Believe me, actually having possession keeps one grounded and focussed on why one is holding the stuff at all.
I won't bore you with my oft-stated reasons for owning gold in these times (but I will if you insist! ;-) ) but, when I buy gold in the UK I place my order on-line; they confirm same day and require my cheque within two days (or wire transfer to their bank - NO credit cards accepted). They despatch the goods some time after the cheque clears. They buy and sell at the prices quoted to me, irrespective of what happens to the gold price in the meantime. They honour their side and expect me to do the same.
I imagine the likes of Kitco do the same on pricing (but probably take credit cards - Mr. Biden would be making sure of that!).
BTW, in the UK, gold transactions over £5000 are notifyable to the government, as is any account purchasing over £10,000 in any 12 month period. I don't know what the situation is in the US, but this may be something that you would want to check out before using one dealer. (I did say gold was for the paranoid!)


'The government would LOVE to get rid of the penny.'

Already being done. No AAFES BX/PX in Europe (US Military equivalent of WalMart) accepts/ returns pennies. The 'consumer' there is always required to pay 7 Dollars if the register says 6.98 or 6.99.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

Thanks for all the commentary. About gold: hey, I have held all sorts of gold-type value stuff. I discovered the downside early in life as my neighbors sought to remove this stuff and take possession via climbing through the window or breaking the door.

This is why the rule: be armed, have a good pair of dogs....comes into mind. I would far rather spend $200 for another English Mastiff who is a GREAT and TREMENDOUS guard dog than on gold coin. Then, whatever I own is safer.

I really miss my Miss Cleo, our 250 lb mastiff.

Bear of Little Brain

250 lb! That's nearly 18 stone (I don't quite comprehend 'lbs' in large numbers). Good grief. The gold coins would soon disappear in feeding their guardian! There again, there's no warmth in dead metal.


Gold and guns. It's been the end-game solution for eons.

Stash the cash under the bed, and it will still be stolen - just like gold. And T-bills and fiat currencies everywhere are depreciating like a stone as Benny Boy revs up the helicopter...



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