Author Archives: Claudio Grass

     

 

 

Claudio Grass interviews Professor Antal E. Fekete

GLOBAL GOLD: “Prof. Fekete, it is a pleasure to have this opportunity to talk to you. You are a fierce critic of the current monetary system and a strong proponent of the gold standard, particularly the variety that combines with the Real Bills Doctrine (RBD) of Adam Smith which we shall get into later. We are very much interested to learn how this interest of yours started in the first place and what led you to believe in gold and Austrian Economics in general.”

 

Antal FeketeProfessor Antal E. Fekete (see further below for biographical details)

Photo credit: verlagjohannesmuller

 

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Concerns over Immigration Motivated Voters – Relations with the EU may come under Severe Strain

On October 18th, the Swiss went to the polls to cast their votes in the country’s parliamentary elections. The right-wing triumphed as the Swiss Peoples’ Party or SVP won 29.4% of the vote. The papers described it as “the best performance by a party in at least a century”. The Free Democratic Party (FDP) also gained, winning 16.4% of the vote. In terms of the number of seats, the Swiss Right secured 14 new seats (11 from the SVP’s gains alone) to reach a total of 98 seats (65 for the SVP).

 

swiss_electionsA landslide victory for right-of-center parties in Switzerland – click to enlarge.

 

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Switching Enemies

The tragic Paris attacks are leading me to raise questions once again, since it is the second time that France has topped the news headlines this year. I believe that followers of Global Gold’s Outlook Report are by now aware that I am a big fan of historícal research. I tend to consult my history books to reflect on the past and see if I can recognize patterns similar to the events we are experiencing today.

Looking back, it seems obvious that in the course of the 20th and 21st century, wars went from being about nationalism to ideological wars (communism versus democracy or what we would call ‘state capitalism disguised as democracy’), to becoming about religion, which sort of takes us back to the dark ages.

Since the Berlin wall came down back in 1989 and communism was defeated, the latter has been replaced by the “Muslim World” as the new enemy. We could see this change in Hollywood movies and in our media coverage.

 

piechart2“All terrorists are Muslims” – except the 94% who aren’t. Attribution of terror attacks in the US between 1980 to 2005 according to the FBI.

 

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The Misfortune of Being Born Into a State

In an essay titled “The State”, Randolph Bourne, an American writer, made a distinction between a country and a state that I find crucial. He described one’s country as “an inescapable group into which we are born”. In his view, a country is “a concept of peace, tolerance, of living and letting live. But the State is essentially a concept of power, of competition; it signifies a group in its aggressive aspects. And we have the misfortune of being born not only into a country but into a State, and as we grow up we learn to mingle the two feelings into a hopeless confusion”.

 

Randolph BourneRandolph Silliman Bourne: a lifelong enemy of the State and war. His great unfinished work “The State” was discovered after his death. Bourne’s odd physical appearance owed to tuberculosis of the spine, which he suffered in childhood. Jeffrey Riggenbach has published a great paean on the brilliance of Randolph Bourne at the Mises Institute.

Photo credit: Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University

 

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Why Central Banks Are Forcing Investors To Hold Gold

It has been nearly three years since we published our first Outlook Report in December 2012. Since the beginning of our publication, we have focused on different aspects of the gold market and have analyzed what moves the gold market. In this article, we would like to re-examine some of the topics that we had previously discussed and analyze whether any of our assumptions have changed.

 

Golden-Globe
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Claudio Shares his Ideas

We were quite busy lately and are therefore actually a bit late in posting this podcast, in which our good friend Claudio Grass of Global Gold is interviewed by The Daily Coin on the recent hot topics of Greece, the declaration of war against cash and how gold fits into all of this.

 

3263efdClaudio Grass, CEO of Global Gold

 

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Many Questions

On the 7th of January two gunmen attacked the office of Charlie Hebdo, a French weekly magazine. The shooters were two brothers who belonged to the Yemeni branch of the Islamist terrorist organization Al-Qaeda. The attack resulted in 11 casualties and many injured, while the shooters were shot a few days later in an exchange of fire with the police. Charlie Hebdo is a satire magazine, and its jokes and cartoons and its secular approach are widely considered anti-religious. Social media went into a frenzy with the hashtag “Je suis Charlie”. Four days later two million people including tens of world leaders participated in a rally for national unity in Paris, and over three million participated across France. A lot of questions were raised by this tragic event and its aftermath that we will look at in this article.

 

charlie-hebdo-shootout-videoSixteenByNine540The gunmen who attacked Charlie Hebdo and their get-away car

Photo via Reuters TV

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Dangerous Freedom versus Peaceful Slavery

At Global Gold, I am often asked what we would do if, for example, the US were to come out with a confiscation order. My reply is: We would do nothing whatsoever! Why? Quite simply, because no one in Switzerland has the political power to execute such an order! Even if Swiss politicians were to support such a confiscation order, the Swiss people would likely have the final vote. I am confident that any such confiscation order wouldn’t have any chance to be supported by a majority in Switzerland, especially one concerning assets held outside the banking system such as physical precious metals.

Even in the highly unlikely case that it would be accepted, the vote would take at least twelve months, thereby giving the persons affected enough time to move their assets elsewhere. In my view this is the main advantage of a direct democracy, it ensures that the people rather than the politicians in power have sovereignty. The federalist structure of Switzerland moreover guarantees that political power is reduced to a minimum. “Confederation Helvetica” might be the old name for Switzerland, but it is just as valid today as it was in the past.

 

Burma opposition leader Aung San SuuInside the Curia Confedarationis Helveticae (Swiss Parliament building) in Bern

Photo credit: Sébastien Feval – AFP

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Interview with Václav Klaus

 

“The best environment for man is the environment of liberty.”

Václav Klaus

 

VACLAV KLAUS PRESS CLUB

Former president of the Czech Republic and strong defender of the ideas of classical liberalism, Professor Václav Klaus

Photo via collective-evolution.com

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Deflation Paranoia

The euro zone’s consumer price inflation rate declined below 1% in early 2014, getting closer to zero during 2014, nowhere near the ambitious 2% benchmark set by central banks. A further small downward adjustment in the inflation rate has put it into negative territory, so harmonized euro area consumer prices are now declining. Western monetary authorities and economists appear genuinely fearful of deflation. Headlines in leading papers reflect this fear very strongly, describing deflation as “the world’s biggest economic problem”, or a “nightmare that stalks Europe” that could lead to its “demise and collapse”.

 

beauty of deflation

Photo credit: Yuya Shino / Reuters

 

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Looking Back at 2014

2014 was quite an eventful year for global markets: Janet Yellen became the new Chairman of the Federal Reserve; we were on the brink of war in Crimea, and Germany won its fourth world cup title. Many countries around the world held elections, the Scotts and the Swiss had referendums and both of them decided to maintain the status quo, whether it was against Scottish independence or the Gold initiative.

I wouldn’t describe this year as a tough one for gold, considering that it is ending the year close to where it left off end-2013. While some may perceive this negatively and against the rationale for holding physical gold, I find it more relevant than ever, like I said last year. The main reason why gold did not move against the tide this year is, in my opinion, because appearances have a stronger influence on the minds of the people than the facts presented by reality.

 

libertyImage credit: Glenna Goodacre

 

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Global Gold Talks to Dr. Ron Paul

Last month, Global Gold’s Claudio Grass met with Dr. Ron Paul in Lake Jackson, Texas at the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. Here we show you how their discussion unfolded.

 

Claudio and Ron

(Photo via Claudio Grass)

 

Global Gold: Dr. Paul, thank you very much for taking the time to speak with us. It is a pleasure to meet with you and learn your perspective on political and economic developments. But first, how would you describe your days since you’ve retired from Congress?

Dr. Paul: I’m staying busy! I’ve been involved in several things in my life. One was practicing medicine. That was very important, but I don’t do that anymore. Even when I got started into politics, I did both for a long time. When I left Congress and went back home I practiced medicine for twelve years. The other activity was promoting the cause of liberty, believing that it’s the lack of liberty that causes war and causes poverty and suffering and that if people were to understand the importance of personal liberty that the world would be a much better place.

So the organization that I created was called “Campaign for Liberty” but all those years whether I was in Congress or out of Congress, I have been campaigning for liberty in different ways. When I ran for office, it gave me a chance to speak about the issues. It actually all started with the breakdown of Bretton Woods in 1971. That was a big monetary event for me because I’ve been observing the developments and had studied Austrian economics. Even though it was anticipated, it was still very dramatic when it happened. So, a couple of years later I decided to run for office. I did not expect to win any election because, as you know, my philosophy was different. It didn’t seem to fit the pragmatism that everybody wanted.

When I got elected in ‘76, I started an organization called “The Foundation for Rational Economics and Education”, the F.R.E.E. foundation, which is also the parent of the new organization now, the Institute for Peace and Prosperity. Since leaving Congress, I went in different ways, including Internet broadcasting, programming and interviews; I do a bit of that. I also have a speaking activity, where I go as frequently as I can. College campuses have received me pretty well. I enjoy that and do a lot of it.

I also started a Ron Paul curriculum for home schoolers, believing once again in the importance of education. I don’t believe that everyone should be home schooled or that some are more inclined than others but there is a certain group that can handle it – parents and students. I think that is very important. I stay pretty active and though I am retired from Congress, I am not retired from promoting the cause I am talking about.

 

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