Friday, March 14, 2008

Mo Money

Yesterdays big financial news was that an ounce of gold hit $1000. I just have to say, "YIKES!" We buy gold at work, and one project I just finished in october was reducing the amount of gold I use at a particular step. When I finished my project, gold was trading at $825 or so. Less than 5 months ago. It has gone up 20% this year alone. It went up 50% in 14 months. This is not good.

There are many reasons for the gold prices to go up.
  • For whatever reason (it's pretty?) gold is considered to have intrinsic value. When economies start to look unstable, those looking to preserve wealth like to transition fiat money into gold. Stocking up on gold is an indicator that people are losing faith in an economy.
  • When we were on the gold standard, a dollar was pretty much a "stock" of some small amount of gold. For historical reasons, Gold prices are still valued in dollars. With the dollar falling abroad along with the US reputation, other countries are stocking up.
  • Lesser demand for jewelry when people are stockpiling necessities.

There are other factors, but I have only a minor interest in this and don't stay abreast of all the economics, just the prices.

About 2 weeks ago, I sent an email to friends titled "the sky is falling" because our president came out with a press statement leading to this headline, "Bush says US not headed into recession". And since we all know that he likes to say the opposite of truth in an effort to sound reassuring, I figured this was a bad sign. Just this week he grudgingly acknowledges that our economy is heading to hell in a handbasket, after stating so confidently that it wasn't. Well duh.

WHY, WHY, WHY does the media continue to parrot his words without analysis? This is the thing I think is worst in the way we get news. Headline news shouldn't be telling us the story, but the should actually follow up with the story. And it shouldn't just be, "but the president said the sky is green and a general got fired for suggesting the sky is blue. How could that general be so rash as to make that statement against the president?" No wonder we get into situations like this. We have faith based reporting with the "faith" being a perversion of patriotism. The lack of analysis and dissent is killing us, ever more quickly.

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