The real reason why the government wants inflation is to reduce the value of its debt; it also reduces the value of your savings. — Peter Schiff (via moralanarchism)


Food prices soar as incomes stand still

Of course. The rising price of food is due to “the weather.” Not the fact that the Fed has created more new dollars in the last five years than in the last 100 years of its history. Keep telling yourself it’s the snow.

The CPI doesn’t capture the true extent of inflation as Peter Schiff wonderfully illustrated in this video. The Fed routinely states that it’s “target inflation rate” is 2%, meaning that over the course of an average human life the American dollar will lose 75% of its value. The powers that be have succeeded in convincing the world that inflation is good and that -gasp- deflation is the bane of our existence as if nothing could be worse than falling prices.

And it seems you can’t turn on the news today without reading some sort of hand-wringing about income inequality with no mention of the Fed’s policies whatsoever. The Fed is handing over ~$70 billion dollars a month to Wall Street banks in order to “stimulate the economy” and is clueless when asset bubbles in stocks and bonds and real estate grow to obscene levels. Who benefits when the stock market breaks records daily? Is it the average family living paycheck to paycheck or the Donald Trumps and Warren Buffets? The Fed is the primary driving force behind the strains on the poorer Americans. When the price of groceries or fuel or other consumer goods grow it doesn’t impact the wealthier demographics to the extent that it strains the lower income earners (especially those on fixed incomes).

And this article mentions the Fed a grand total of 0 times.

Sad thing is that most people will read this and then start screaming for wage increases, perpetually locking them into this game where their wages are always chasing inflation, and losing. Every time wages go up, prices move and then you have to wait until the next quarter or next fiscal year to receive a raise. 

That’s not a solution, that’s a temporary fix. 

The real solution is to curtail inflation, stop printing money and stop borrowing money that we can’t afford to pay back. 

On Monetary Inflation Leading to Price Inflation



After reading what Dan linked, I realized that at the root of the Austrian definition of inflation is their belief that an increase in M necessarily leads to increases in prices.

Again, if I print up a bunch of currency and sit on it, there has been an increase in the money supply but there would be no increase in the general level of prices.

So if an increase in the money supply (inflation) doesn’t lead to a general increase in prices (price inflation) then inflation doesn’t actually seem bad because price inflation is what erodes real savings, wages, and creates other intertemporal distortions.

Austrians do not claim that an increase in M necessarily leads to price inflation under any and all conditions. Instead, we assert that it tends to. But if - like you explain - the new money is not actually introduced into the economy (which includes even non-circulated money since there would be a reasonable expectation that it eventually will be. After all, what purpose is served by money that earns no interest, is not counted as a store of value, and is never exchanged?) or if demand for the money increases enough to offset the new supply, then that may not necessarily lead to price inflation.

Mises, in his Theory of Money and Credit, built that demand caveat right into his definition of inflation:

In theoretical investigation there is only one meaning that can rationally be attached to the expression Inflation: an increase in the quantity of money (in the broader sense of the term, so as to include fiduciary media as well), that is not offset by a corresponding increase in the need for money (again in the broader sense of the term), so that a fall in the objective exchange-value of money must occur.

Hazlitt, in What You Should Know About Inflation, offered this caveat by framing it in terms of the supply of goods that money would be used to exchange for:

When the supply of money is increased, people have more money to offer for goods. If the supply of goods does not increase — or does not increase as much as the supply of money — then the prices of goods will go up.

Indeed, Hazlitt later stated as true that “to attribute [price] inflation solely to an increase in the volume of money is ‘oversimplification.’” And went on to provide other means with which money can be made to change in value.

The value of money, like the value of goods, is not determined by merely mechanical or physical relationships, but primarily by psychological factors which may often be complicated. 

Also, Hazlitt noted that an expectation in a change in the supply of money can also lead to changes in prices:

It is also an oversimplification to say that the value of an individual dollar depends simply on the present supply of dollars outstanding. It depends also on the expected future supply of dollars. If most people fear, for example, that the supply of dollars is going to be even greater a year from now than at present, then the present value of the dollar (as measured by its purchasing power) will be lower than the present quantity of dollars would otherwise warrant.

Rothbard, in What Has Government Done to Our Money?, explained that the process of new money entering and circulating through the economy is what drives price inflation:

[After the first creators] take the newly-created money and use it to buy goods and services… The new money works its way, step by step, throughout the economic system. As the new money spreads, it bids prices up—as we have seen, new money can only dilute the effectiveness of each dollar.

So it is only under certain conditions (which, ultimately, are nearly all real-world conditions) in which monetary inflation “necessarily” leads to price inflation. When Austrians use the terms inevitable and necessarily, as Mises does here, it is by implicitly assuming - as all economists tend to - ceteris paribus conditions:

Inflation, as this term was always used everywhere and especially in this country, means increasing the quantity of money and bank notes in circulation and the quantity of bank deposits subject to check. But people today use the term `inflation’ to refer to the phenomenon that is an inevitable consequence of inflation, that is the tendency of all prices and wage rates to rise. The result of this deplorable confusion is that there is no term left to signify the cause of this rise in prices and wages. There is no longer any word available to signify the phenomenon that has been, up to now, called inflation… . As you cannot talk about something that has no name, you cannot fight it. Those who pretend to fight inflation are in fact only fighting what is the inevitable consequence of inflation, rising prices. Their ventures are doomed to failure because they do not attack the root of the evil. They try to keep prices low while firmly committed to a policy of increasing the quantity of money that must necessarily make them soar. As long as this terminological confusion is not entirely wiped out, there cannot be any question of stopping inflation.

Again, the new money must be introduced into the economy (or recognized to exist and therefore expected to be used) and demand for this new money must not increase commensurate to the new supply. Only under these conditions can the “Austrian definition of inflation” be said to state that an increase in the money supply necessarily leads to an increase in price inflation. 

What we do explain is that price inflation is a primary consequence of monetary inflation and, conversely, that monetary inflation is the true cause of price inflation (Austrians are usually careful to distinguish between such inflation and mere changes in prices). Not many years ago, this was mostly an uncontroversial and pretty universally accepted truth. Indeed, many Keynesians and Monetarists today will claim a “target” for price inflation (usually 2% or 4% or some ostensibly innocuous - and ultimately dubious - figure) and flatly recognize that the central bank’s mechanism for monetary expansion is precisely the primary means to that end. Austrians, like other economists, understand that price inflation is the goal of monetary policy.

Assuming that the demand for money is always constant for the remainder of this post and doesn’t play a factor in keeping prices static.

I think that the problem here is that there are a few schools of thought within the Austrian camp. One that believes in the hard-line Quantitative Theory of Money, where any new money instantly leads to inflation. Another, which applies a more flexible approach to money supply increases and views increased supply as “eventually” leading to inflation. Within that second group, there can be smaller niches of thought, where some believe in sticky prices and some don’t. Correct me if I’m wrong here, but most Austrians don’t believe in sticky prices, correct?  

My take:

Certainly, the introduction of additional liquidity which has no demand and is introduced into circulation can lead to inflation. But even this is no guarantee. It is possible that you can increase money supply, not just to those who hoard it, but into the system, beyond the system’s demand for additional funds and then at a later time decrease the money supply before any inflation takes place and you’ll have no inflationary impact. It’s no guarantee but it is possible. 

In other words, it’s all about the stickiness or unstickiness of prices. 

If you believe that prices are sticky, then you also believe that introduction of additional capital can have a delayed impact and that one can counter that impact and decrease the money supply before prices react. 

As Hazlitt said, it’s all psychological. Prices can change irrespective of money supply because the prices are set by the preferences of people.

I personally believe in price stickiness, for many reasons; contracts, wages with yearly raise agreements, convenience, laziness, etc, etc. Lot’s of reasons why prices might stay static longer than they should.

For this reason I think that it is possible to introduce additional money into a system and not have a (eventual) inflation. There are some Austrians who would disagree and there are some Austrians who would say I’m not an Austrian. 

Side Note: I like this discussion and I think that almost all of economics should focus on inflation because it is the key, one way or another. It’s probably safe to say that the three main schools (Austrian, Keynesian and Monetarist/Chicagoan) differ on inflation as the main factor. Both on the causes and the impact of inflation and it’s toxicity to the system. Fun topic. 

P.S. I’m just wrapping up 20 hours of work, 80 hours this week, so if this is a bit incoherent, I’m sorry. 

EDIT: i forgot to comment on the last paragraph that LAL posted. I agree that price inflation is the goal of monetary policy. Because there’s a belief that current spending/debts are made more affordable in the future via inflation. You can secure spending today and finance it overtime so that once the debt is paid off, looking back in retrospect, the cost seems relatively lower because the money is worth less and supply is greater and more available. 

(via michaelangerlo)



The Fed says that given the current situation, inflation isn’t an issue, but it would be if velocity where to increase. 

I think that they are being a little bit disingenuous here. Looking at commodity prices, they have obviously shot up as of late. 

Imagine if velocity were to increase, which it eventually will, how high will prices go? How hard will inflation hit?

Can the Fed figure it out in time or is the value of the dollar doomed?

Gold has been trending downward for quite some time.  

Why will velocity “eventually increase”?  There’s no iron law of velocity.  We could potentially have a permanently lower velocity.

The Fed has a lot of tools at its disposal to stop inflation, and the lessons from the 70s (just like the lessons from 1929) will make the Fed act quickly if inflation starts up.

You’re right, it might not increase. Nothing is guaranteed. 

But M2 is at a historical low and bank holdings, which are increasing only due to QE, are at an all-time high. Banks are just sitting on the money. They don’t have to eventually use it, but they probably will. 

Sure, we could be headed for very low velocity, but there’s no way that you believe that. Besides, wouldn’t very low velocity with a high holding rate by banks lead to either a credit crunch or force the Fed to just increase printing of money?

Either way, I’m not a fan. 

(via libertarians-and-stoya)

The Fed says that given the current situation, inflation isn’t an issue, but it would be if velocity where to increase. 

I think that they are being a little bit disingenuous here. Looking at commodity prices, they have obviously shot up as of late. 

Imagine if velocity were to increase, which it eventually will, how high will prices go? How hard will inflation hit?

Can the Fed figure it out in time or is the value of the dollar doomed?



re: your post

inflation' was negative according to the current measurements

using the 1990 methodology for calculation, inflation was just under 2%

today the ‘official’ stats say ‘inflation’ is at 1%

but, using the 1990 measurements it is over 4%

using the 1980 measurements its about 10%

also, the CPI is not the be-all-end-all in terms of finding inflation

Even if we were to except the idea that inflation is just 1% to 3%, that still 5% to 15% of you money disappearing over a 5 year span. Compound that over 40 to 50 years, the working life of an average man, and that’s a giant number. 

That’s theft.  

It’s a hidden tax and it’s absolutely criminal. 

(via michaelangerlo)

The true evil of inflation is that newly created money benefits politically favored financial interests, especially banks, on the front end. Over time, however, the net result of monetary inflation is always the devaluation of savings and purchasing power. This devaluation discourages saving, which is the key to capital accumulation and investment in a healthy economy. Inflation also tends to hurt seniors and those living on fixed incomes the most. — Ron Paul on Inflation




If you were to use college tuition as the marking stick for inflation, then you would have to say that there was skyrocketing inflation during 2008 even though there was negative nominal GDP growth. 

Sumner is basically right, that high inflation is utterly inconsistent with every other data point. If inflation were a few percentage points higher than the official estimates, then NGDP growth should be much higher and real GDP growth should much lower (or negative). 

Though, Schiff is probably assuming a different definition of inflation (i.e., inflation is defined as a growth in the money supply, no matter what the rate money velocity is). 

There is supply inflation (QE, as admitted to) and price inflation/value loss (which the fed and the media is denying). 

10 year gasoline prices: (2003 to 2013) 150% increase

10 year college prices: (2002-2011)  31% increase 

10 year health care prices: (2002 to 2012) 125% increase

10 year home prices: (2002 to 2012) 24% increase and that’s including the largest crash in history. 

Based on this inflation calculator (’s been 26.9% inflation over the last 10 years. That’s very significant. 

So, how is there no inflation?

The time interval you choose is pretty important. If prices rise by a factor of (1+i) over 1 year [where i is the inflation rate], they will rise (1+i)² over two years, and (1+i)³ over 3 years, and so on. If your time interval is 10 years of course you’re going to get a high inflation rate even if the yearly inflation rate is low.

To find the average yearly inflation rate (if prices rise by 26.9% over 10 years) we take the tenth root of 1.269. The answer is 1.02403, i.e. yearly inflation is 2.403%. Even given this, it is misleading to look at inflation over the past decade as a guide to policy for the current economic situation. Nor is listing specific commodities for which prices have risen rapidly a helpful guide to the current inflation rate across all commodities.

I think I covered most of your retorts in my response to theshotgunrhetoric HERE

Let me just add that, yes, inflation over short periods of time (1 year, for example) is not a big deal per se. 

But who makes and saves money for a single year? Most of us have working careers of much longer periods, somewhere between 25 and 45 years. This means that we save money for a substantially longer period of time (not just a single year). 

Looking at single-year inflation rates isn’t going to give you the big picture of the impact inflation has on savings and the public. 

By now you’re probably thinking that the video brought into question the impact of QE on inflation rates and not just inflation in general. 

I answered that in my response to theshotgunrhetoric, but I’ll reiterate here. Most of QE’s influx of liquidity has been hoarded by banks and many top corporations are sitting on record cash reserves. In order for inflation (price inflation) to actually kick in, that money would have to make it’s way into the public’s hands. It has not. Not yet. 

But Schiff is a believer in the Quantitative Theory of Money (I’m not) and his opinion is that inflation is there, it’s just artificially postponed because the banks are damming up the cash. My theory is that the inflation is looming and unless the Fed soaks the cash supply back up, it’s only a matter of time until the trillions of liquidity the Fed pumped in hits the market and begins to drive prices (more so than it already is). 

If I wrongly attributed my inflation data (or lead you to believe that QE drove that inflation data), then i was wrong in doing so. i was a little off my game yesterday I guess.

 Anyway, click HERE for all my comments. 

(via neoliberalstatist)



There is supply inflation (QE, as admitted to) and price inflation/value loss (which the fed and the media is denying). 

10 year gasoline prices: (2003 to 2013) 150% increase

10 year college prices: (2002-2011)  31% increase 

10 year health care prices: (2002 to 2012) 125% increase

10 year home prices: (2002 to 2012) 24% increase and that’s including the largest crash in history. 

Based on this inflation calculator (’s been 26.9% inflation over the last 10 years. That’s very significant. 

So, how is there no inflation?

You’re attacking a straw man and using bad data to do it. No one is literally saying that there has been “no inflation.” The debate is why inflation has been so low despite the massive currency expansion in 2008. Obviously QE has caused some inflation and likely prevented further deflation; no one is disputing that.

But inflation is not “low”. 

Let’s start with this: I don’t agree with Schiff about hyperinflation. I think that the Fed can control that with the tools that they have. So, no, we won’t be seeing hyperinflation soon (unless things spin drastically out of control). 

But inflation itself is real and QE has caused some of it. You say that no one disputes that, but it is being disputed. That’s the entire premise of this segment. That some of the Fed predicted no inflation and it happened. And Schiff’s premise is that ‘no, there is inflation real inflation’.

Surely there is supply inflation, lots of it.

There’s some price inflation but it hasn’t completely hit because of a few reasons, some of which Schiff hits on. Other reasons are that banks (2,3,4) and some large corporations are hoarding the cash and it has not yet made it’s way into the public. 

The Fed is literally paying banks not to loan the money to the public, helping limit QE-driven inflation:

(Side note: I don’t believe in the Quantitative Theory of Money in that supply inflation IS price inflation. I think there is a lag and this is a good example of how.)

*** You’re right about one thing, I made a mistake to attribute all of this inflation to QE. But I will also say that many institutions have been sitting on and growing reserves and that the influx of liquidity from the Fed has not yet hit the market and it’s probably one of the reasons that we haven’t seen larger (above average levels) of inflation. But the threat is certainly there, hovering above our heads, within the reserves of the institutions and cash-rich corporations. ***

The 26.9% inflation over the last ten years means an average 2.69% inflation rate per year—which is not very large considering how much the money supply grew in 2008.

If I take smaller and smaller increments of time, inflation will look smaller and more insignificant. 

But the point still remains that your money has lost nearly 27% of it’s value in just 10 short years. 

Perhaps this isn’t a problem for you, personally, but it is a problem for the majority of the general public. 

First of all, what bank even pays customers an interest rate on savings anymore? If they do, it’s rarely higher than 1% (If there are better rates, PLEASE point me in the right direction). 

I think the best I found is Ally bank (and other digital-only banking centers) at 0.84% annually. 

This means that on average, over the last ten years, if I was lucky enough to have a savings account that paid this high of a rate, I still lost (or will lose) 1.85% (2.69% - 0.84%) of the value of my money PER YEAR! 

And interest rates that banks pay are only going in the other direction and I haven’t even counted in bank fees. And this is the top rate.

Most institutional banks pay 0.01% on savings and nothing on checkings accounts, again, before bank fees.

The average consumer is losing between 2-3% of value annually! 

Again, if you don’t have a problem with this, that’s you’re deal. But if I asked you to open your wallet and hand me 3% of it’s contents every year, you’d probably object.

Why you are okay with this or find ~27% to be “low” is beyond me. 

Based on your inflation calculator: 

1973 to 1983: 124.3% inflation

1983 to 1993: 45.1% inflation

1993 to 2003: 27.3%

2003 to 2013: 26.9% 

The latest ten-year period has had the lowest inflation over the last forty years, and that’s despite the spike in the monetary base in late 2008

All of those periods had different sectors driving inflation. Some of them were external, like imports, others have been internal, like gov’t regulations and QE driven. 

With that said, yes, we’ve had lower inflation in this decade but not really. Like I mentioned before, the cash infusion hasn’t yet hit the public.

In fact, looking at median household income, it’s dropped nearly 10% since 2007 and it continues to drop today. So the money that’s being pumped in from QE isn’t reaching the people given that people are making less despite the fact that there’s more money in circulation…

Couple the falling income rates with the rising inflation rate and you have a recipe for a fucked up economic situation. 

Selectively picking out gasoline, college, health care, and housing prices, and selectively using ten year increases is confirmation bias. Choosing these selective prices tells you nothing about the aggregate price level. 

CPI itself cherry picks. Not only do they cherry pick, they assign arbitrary levels of importance to each product. 

I admit, I cherry picked specific sectors, but those sectors comprise the majority of each households expenses. Not only are these products some of the top purchased, they are accelerating upward in prices at such a rate that most consumers can’t even afford other products and have to stick with just the necessities, rendering the pricing and price changes of other goods pointless. 

From your likes: 

Gas prices plateau’d in the summer of 2008 at $4.12 per gallon, months before the increase in the money supply. And then dropped in the winter to under $1.70 per gallon, a likely symptom of the deflation that was occurring during this time. Likewise, health insurance and tuition were increasing at high rates long before 2008—health care and tuition have been increasing at more or less stable high rates since the 1970’s. You’re trying to explain how QE in November of 2008 was causing high tuition prices and high healthcare prices in the 1970’s, which makes no sense. 

You’re right, perhaps I made the mistake of attributing QE to the current inflation rates, but like I mentioned above, a lot of QE’s inflammatory impact has not yet hit since the banks and institutions are still sitting on the majority of that liquidity. 

Peter Schiff’s thesis, which he has been saying for at least five years now, is that hyperinflation is just around the corner. But he’s been consistently wrong. We had deflation in 2008, and modest inflation since. And the low interest rates, which reduce the opportunity cost of holding on to cash, and the interest on reserves, which increase the opportunity cost of not holding on to cash, explain fairly well why there has been no hyperinflation (or even moderate inflation), and why any hyperinflation in the near future is unlikely. 

But that’s the problem. People and corporations and banks are holding on to cash, mainly because there is no real good investments out there right now. 

Take Apple for example. They have more cash on hand then they will ever need but what did they do? They borrowed money for business use. Why? Because why spend their own money when the rate of lending is so cheap. 

There’s nearly no reason to put a single cent into a bank these days other than safe keeping. I’d almost rather buy a safe instead of pay bank fees. There aren’t many good investing opportunities and the rate of return vs risk isn’t as favorable as it’s been in the past. 

There is no hyperinflation, no. And there probably will never be. So long as the banks the the Fed can keep up their tango. 

Further, Scott’s point needs to be addressed. That if inflation is really a lot higher than what CPI estimates assume, then how do you explain the growth in employment, or the positive GDP growth, or the modest NGDP growth? If inflation were a lot higher than the CPI assumes, then we should have really high NGDP growth and low/negative GDP growth (which as Scott points out, is inconsistent with employment gains). 

First and foremost, GDP is just a measure of money exchanging hands. If I handed you a $100 and you handed it right back, it would positively impact GDP… and that’s all you need to know about GDP as a “statistic”. They can just add $500 billion to the GDP out of no where… It’s political nature makes it one of, if not the worst way to measure our economy’s health. 

But there isn’t employment growth. There’s employment growth in terms of total labor force size. But there’s a contraction of the total labor force which leads to better unemployment numbers but not more actual jobs. We are adding jobs, but we are comparing it to the total number of jobs we lost in 2007-2008. The problem with that is that we need to recapture those lost jobs PLUS account for the growth in population and labor-aged population.

From the BLS website:

When you look at how many people that are of age to work are actually working in America, we aren’t trending up…

Also, the growth of employment is very misleading because there’s a growth (but not keeping pace with population growth) in physical employment (number of jobs) but no growth in wages and benefits of those jobs. We are adding lower paying and even part time jobs and considering those “new jobs”. 

P.S. Your link for housing prices references Ukrainian housing prices, not US housing prices. Though I imagine the story here isn’t terribly different. But you should be more careful. 

I am careful. If you scroll down, US Home Prices are just a few countries below the Ukraine Prices. 


  1. If you don’t mind losing 2.5% of your money every year, then inflation is fine. 
  2. QE’s complete impact hasn’t been felt because increased liquidity isn’t really reaching the public. banks and corporations are sitting on cash. 
  3. There isn’t a growth in employment in America. Not even close. 
  4. Not only are there less jobs, there’s less money for people who do have jobs.
  5. If all of this is a-okay with you, then i want to live in your world. 

(via theshotgunrhetoric-deactivated2)




The minimum wage in 1955 was $1.00/hr.

That would be four quarters, back when quarters were made with silver. The melt value of those four quarters (in today’s money) is about $20.

gee I wish this had a source..

you can literally google every aspect of this post.

1995 minimum wage, silver content in US quarters pre-1964, spot price of silver

These are not hard pieces of information to find. Not everything needs to be injected directly into your thick skull from somebody else in order for you to know about it.

I mean honestly. Are you that fucking dumb?

I hate lazy people who want a source for everything as if Google doesn’t exist on your computer, phone, playstation and tv. 

All of the info in the world, right there at your fingertips and you are too lazy to search or to comfortable with your skepticism that you refuse to do so. 

Someone yesterday asked me “If IP law hurts individuals, why isn’t there anything written about it?” I wanted to cut my neck with a pencil, pull my brains out with a toothpick and jam them down my throat so I could suffocate to death.

Minimum Wage in 1955 to 1956: $1/hour (via Dept of Labor) 

Price of an ounce of Silver in 1955: $0.95/ounce (via The Silver Institute)

What $1 in 1955 is worth in 2013 dollars: $8.23 (via Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Price of an ounce of Silver in 2013 (3/28/13): $28.82 (via MonEx)

The US dollar literally lost $20.59 or 71.4% of it’s value since 1955 due to inflation. 

Next time don’t be so damn lazy. 

You’re welcome,

Is the Fed Lying About Its Gold? Mark Thornton talks to Lew Rockwell about monetary tsunamis. 

Inflation is knocking at the door of the economy. Have you recession-proofed yourself yet? Time to seriously think about getting into BitCoin, Gold, Silver and other commodities that don’t deal with the Dollar, the Treasury or any other highly vulnerable assets. 

ArtistLew Rockwell, Mark Thornton
TitleIs the Fed Lying About Its Gold? Mark Thornton talks to Lew Rockwell about monetary tsunamis.
[T]hough the wages of the workman are commonly paid to him in money, his real revenue, like that of all other men, consists, not in the money, but in the money’s worth; not in the metal pieces, but in what can be got for them — Adam Smith (via freemarketliberal)


The Stand-Up Economist (yes, that’s a thing) did a bit at the annual meeting of the American Economic Association a few weeks ago entitled “Hyperinflation in Hell.” I thought it was pretty good in person, so hopefully the video came out okay. I also like that I got to feel like I learned something, because I was unfamiliar with the concept of Joss paper.

> Gross Death Product

> per de-capita


(via libertarians-and-stoya-deactiva)


Hans-Hermann Hoppe On How To Blow Away Paul Krugman


Keynesian theory destroyed in less than 60 seconds by Hans-Hermann Hoppe.