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Rachellelogram
08-09-2011, 07:22 PM
I keep hearing unintelligent teabaggers yapping about how gold is the future! invest in gold! blahblahblah. Don't they realize that if an apocalypseall rights reserved, TM, pat.pend. occurred, gold won't mean anything at all next to guns, fresh water, food, and shelter?

Is there an intelligent reason to invest in gold at the magnitude ultra-right-wingers recommend? Or is it just more nonsensical Glenn-Beckish paranoia?

Quintas
08-09-2011, 07:33 PM
Is there an intelligent reason to invest in gold at the magnitude ultra-right-wingers recommend?

Sure. It was pretty intelligent if you had bought in 2005 and could sell it now. You would have made a handy profit. As far as being useful post apocalypse? Not so much.

The people begging you to buy, already own alot of it. They want you to be the rube to take it off their hands.

Der Trihs
08-09-2011, 08:04 PM
My guess: it seems simple, and appeals to people who like simple solutions. No complicated, abstract financial system, just piles of shiny stuff you can hold in your hand.

Odesio
08-09-2011, 08:23 PM
Don't they realize that if an apocalypseall rights reserved, TM, pat.pend. occurred, gold won't mean anything at all next to guns, fresh water, food, and shelter?


I don't know if gold has ever become worthless after the collapse of a civilization. If paper or electric currency ever became worthless then gold would likely still retain some value as a medium of exchange. That said, I don't think a lot of people who actually buy gold end up keeping the gold in easily accessibly places. They end up getting some sort of certificate saying they own gold.

Gorsnak
08-09-2011, 08:29 PM
Everybody knows that post-apocalyptic currency will be bottlecaps. Gold. Hah! Do you have any idea how heavy that shit is?

Der Trihs
08-09-2011, 08:31 PM
I don't know if gold has ever become worthless after the collapse of a civilization. However, when say Rome fell they thought of gold as being a medium of exchange before the fall. Some post-apocalyptic goldbug will be faced with a bunch of fellow survivors who quite likely won't consider gold anything but shiny metal. The idea that gold = money has already mostly fallen. And gold is rare enough that it doesn't make a good sole medium of exchange for most people anyway.

XT
08-09-2011, 08:38 PM
Why do ultra-right-wingers flip out over gold?

It's a commodity like any other. If you had bought gold a few years ago it would be worth a lot to you now. I'd flip out if I owned a few hundred ounces that I bought at, say, $400/ounce. Sadly, I don't buy commodities and never invested in gold.

I keep hearing unintelligent teabaggers yapping about how gold is the future!

I hear more than 'unintelligent teabaggers' yapping about gold, considering how high it's gotten. But buying it now would be buying at what is most likely the top of the market. Still, you never know...gold could still go up significantly, since it's one of those commodities that people buy when they perceive that other markets are shaky.

Don't they realize that if an apocalypseall rights reserved, TM, pat.pend. occurred, gold won't mean anything at all next to guns, fresh water, food, and shelter?

Well, if they are buying it in anticipation of the Apocalypse then they are probably buying it for the wrong reasons. Still, there is nothing to say that gold will lose all it's intrinsic value because of the collapse of civilization. People, being people, they will still want some medium of exchange, and gold is a medium of exchange that goes back fairly far in our collective history. It makes as much sense as a medium of exchange as bottle caps. ;)

Is there an intelligent reason to invest in gold at the magnitude ultra-right-wingers recommend?

Certainly. Had you done so 5 or 6 years ago you could cash in and make a large pile of money. As with anything. Is there any 'intelligent reason' to buy stock in Pets.com? No...not much today. Nor was there any compelling reason to have bought large quantities of Microsoft stock when it first IPO'ed. And a lot of folks thought Google stock wouldn't be worth all that much either...or Apple, especially after they started falling out of favor and before they started introducing their iPod line of personal music players.

Gold has value even beyond what it looks like around your neck or on your finger, however. It's also used fairly extensively in electronics.

All that said, though, there is no reason to invest heavily in gold NOW....at least not in my uninformed opinion (I don't invest in commodities). I think we are getting close to the top of the market...though, again, what I 'think' is fairly irrelevant, since I have no idea. It's hard for me to believe that gold is going to go up much higher than it's current price, though....and to me it looks like a bubble that is ready to burst anytime. Once folks start dumping gold it could be a huge rush back to earth, and will be ugly for folks buying in at the top of the price point.

-XT

typoink
08-09-2011, 08:39 PM
The gold investment isn't for the apocalypse, it's for the pending market crash.

The non-hybrid seed tubes are for the apocalypse.

Peremensoe
08-09-2011, 08:44 PM
I know some people who take the possibility of a real collapse in the near future pretty seriously. They already have the shelter, guns, and stockpiled food and supplies. The gold (physical gold in hand, of course) is in addition to all that.

Icarus
08-09-2011, 08:45 PM
Ultra-right wingers are very motivated by fear.

The gold selling people use fear to sell gold.

The ultra-right wingers respond.

Argent Towers
08-09-2011, 09:16 PM
LOL. Does anyone here actually know one single "ultra-right-winger"?

I see ads for buying gold all the time in "American Rifleman," one of the magazines offered by the NRA. I also would often hear pitches for gold on G. Gordon Liddy's show, both from him and from the commercial breaks. (I rarely listen to his show anymore - Liddy seems lacking in energy and coherence and I think his faculties may be dulling.) In any case, none of these advertisements for gold ever push any kind of "apocalypse" angle. Ever. The idea they always put forth is that gold is a good financial investment - they never imply that people should buy it to use as currency after the fall of civilization!

XT
08-09-2011, 09:29 PM
LOL. Does anyone here actually know one single "ultra-right-winger"?

Sure. I'm considered a 'right winger' or a 'conservative' around these parts, and my dad thinks I'm a flaming liberal...so, based on that I actually know quite a few 'ultra-right-winger' types. :p

I also know a couple of out there libertarian types who think the country and the economy are about to come to a crashing halt, and have stock piled food, water, ammunition, medical supplies (etc etc) and various 'trade goods'...as well as gold.

Me, I've just identified all of the liberals in my neighborhood, so comes the revolution...

;)

-XT

Qadgop the Mercotan
08-09-2011, 09:30 PM
LOL. Does anyone here actually know one single "ultra-right-winger"?
Sure. My father in law.

Also a number of my patients.

I inherited a number of gold coins originally owned by my great grandfather. They add up to a hefty few ounces, $25 face value, a lot more on today's market. Wish I had more....

Argent Towers
08-09-2011, 09:49 PM
Well, personally, I think gold would be totally useless as a commodity if civilization ended. It's just a metal that has been arbitrarily declared valuable by our society...it doesn't really have much practical use to anyone. Yes it has uses in electronics but that doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things in a post-apocalyptic context.

Peremensoe
08-09-2011, 09:55 PM
There's a big difference between a major collapse in industrial capitalism, and the end of civilization.

Odesio
08-09-2011, 09:57 PM
The idea that gold = money has already mostly fallen. And gold is rare enough that it doesn't make a good sole medium of exchange for most people anyway.

It doesn't have to be a sole medium of exchange to have value. Short of a total apocalyptic scenario where not only civilizations collapse but there are only a scant few humans left, I just don't see gold ever being worthless. If we're talking about a scenario where civilization goes to hell in a hand basket making currency worthless, durable items like gold and silver will still retain value.

Chronos
08-09-2011, 09:58 PM
The thing is, even in the very few applications where gold really is useful for more than ornamentation, you only need a tiny amount of it. How much weight of gold do you think there is in a foil a few dozen atoms thick? If we were going to be basing worth on usefulness, it would make much more sense to consider iron, copper, or aluminum the standard for exchange.

China Guy
08-09-2011, 10:02 PM
Almost everyone "buying" gold is buying "non-deliverable gold" aka "fools gold." It's only value is that people think it is of value. If the zombie apocalypse happens, the vast majority of gold "owners" will find it as fleeting and worth as little value as a greenback.

code_grey
08-09-2011, 10:10 PM
apparently nobody believes in a mad-maxian apocalypse, huh? The only ones who talk about collapse of civilization seem to be moronic libtards who ascribe their dumb imaginings to decent Conservative folks. Normal people understand that we can have economic breakdown, political turmoil, war and all sorts of bad stuff, but civilization will go right on going. It always kept on going in the past and it will always keep on going in the future.

Odesio
08-09-2011, 10:15 PM
Almost everyone "buying" gold is buying "non-deliverable gold" aka "fools gold." It's only value is that people think it is of value. If the zombie apocalypse happens, the vast majority of gold "owners" will find it as fleeting and worth as little value as a greenback.

This is exactly why I chuckle at those ads. While I think gold and other precious metals will still retain some value in an economic collapse, those with non-deliverable gold will find their promissory notes are just as worthless as currency.

Odesio

PS: I'm not one of those folks who thinks we need to go back to the gold standard nor do I actually own anything gold beyond some jewelry.

Bryan Ekers
08-09-2011, 10:19 PM
In a post-apocalyptic word, iodine will be a far more useful element.

Der Trihs
08-09-2011, 10:36 PM
apparently nobody believes in a mad-maxian apocalypse, huh? The only ones who talk about collapse of civilization seem to be moronic libtards who ascribe their dumb imaginings to decent Conservative folks. Excuse me? The conservatives have been big fans of apocalyptic scenarios for ages.

And "decent conservative" like "compassionate conservatism" is an oxymoron.

Little Nemo
08-09-2011, 10:37 PM
Some right-wing people really believe the Obama administration will destroy the American economy and make the dollar valueless.

Der Trihs
08-09-2011, 10:49 PM
Some right-wing people really believe the Obama administration will destroy the American economy and make the dollar valueless.For that matter, about a fourth (http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/robert-schlesinger/2010/03/24/party-of-nuts-poll-shows-gop-thinks-obama-is-muslim-socialist) think that Obama may be the Antichrist.

Majorities of Republicans also believe that Obama is a socialist (67 percent), that he wants to take away Americans' guns (61 percent), is a Muslim (57 percent), has done "many" things that are not constitutional (55 percent), and wants to turn the country over to a one world government (51 percent).

Rachellelogram
08-09-2011, 10:58 PM
LOL. Does anyone here actually know one single "ultra-right-winger"?
Unfortunately I'm related to at least 6 of them. Plus their children.

Peremensoe
08-09-2011, 11:01 PM
It doesn't have to be a sole medium of exchange to have value. Short of a total apocalyptic scenario where not only civilizations collapse but there are only a scant few humans left, I just don't see gold ever being worthless. If we're talking about a scenario where civilization goes to hell in a hand basket making currency worthless, durable items like gold and silver will still retain value.

The thing is, even in the very few applications where gold really is useful for more than ornamentation, you only need a tiny amount of it. How much weight of gold do you think there is in a foil a few dozen atoms thick? If we were going to be basing worth on usefulness, it would make much more sense to consider iron, copper, or aluminum the standard for exchange.

In a post-apocalyptic word, iodine will be a far more useful element.

Once you start talking about things in terms of direct utility, aren't you talking about barter? Well, the boundary can be fuzzy.

For example, suppose I have a piece of land and can do enough gardening and hunting to feed myself directly. Very good, but to live a civilized life, I'll need other things that I can't provide for myself, lacking either the physical resources or the skills. Distillation is a time-honored way of converting agricultural produce into a more compact and durable form. If I can produce enough, I can likely obtain all kinds of things in exchange for bottles of liquor; the recipients can drink it, or use it as a solvent, or trade it themselves further down the road. If my neighbor builds a forge instead of a still, he can turn out a lot of knives and nails, and exchange them for useful things. Those are good durable goods; it might make sense for his trade partners to get a lot more nails than they actually need themselves, because maybe the next guy will need some, and have something good. And so on.

Depending on the density and distribution of settlement, and the availability of resources and skills in each area, at some point it becomes easier for everyone to use a few very compact, very durable media for most exchanges, rather than everyone trying to maintain not only a personal supply but a trading stock of all the things that someone who has something useful to us might want in return.

You see where this is going. It can be more practical to have a currency of some intrinsic value that doesn't actually get used in practice very much. Would gold serve? It's got a pretty good historical track record; there have been few civilized societies where one couldn't trade gold for things of more immediate value.

I wouldn't count on it retaining anything like its present value in relation to things of more immediate use, like liquor or nails or iodine or salt. In that sense, it's a terrible "investment" for a post-catastrophic civilization. But the odds of any particular thing of value being obtainable in exchange for gold seem pretty good. If I had laid in my basic stores already and was looking for a repository for the rest of my fiat money before it blew away, I don't think I'd want to fill the shelves with twenty thousand bottles of tincture of iodine.

Bloodless Turnip
08-09-2011, 11:31 PM
Gold is indeed a good way to barter in an economic collapse. But by gold, I mean junk gold.

What I would do if I were you: Besides gold coins, buy a lot of small gold rings and other jewelry. They should be less expensive than gold coins, and if the SHTF bad, you'll not be losing money, selling premium quality gold coins for the price of junk gold. If I could travel back in time, I'd buy a small bag worth of gold rings.

Small time thieves will snatch gold chains right out of your neck and sell them at these small dealers found everywhere. This is VERY common at train stations, subways and other crowded areas.

So, my advice, if you are preparing for a small economical crisis, gold coins make sense. You will keep the value of the stuff and be able to sell it for its actual cost to gold dealers or maybe other survivalists that know the true value of the item.

In my case, gold coins would have been an excellent investment, saving me from loosing money when the local economy crashed. Even though things are bad, I can go to a bank down town and get paid for what a gold coin is truly worth, same goes for pure silver. But where I live, in my local are small time dealers will only pay you the value of junk gold, no matter what kind of gold you have. So, I'd have to say that if TSHTF bad, gold jewelry is a better trade item than gold coins.

Lessons from Argentina's economic collapse (http://www.silverbearcafe.com/private/10.08/tshtf2.html)

Marley23
08-10-2011, 12:07 AM
The only ones who talk about collapse of civilization seem to be moronic libtards who ascribe their dumb imaginings to decent Conservative folks.
You've been told to stop using this term unless you're posting in the Pit. This is your last reminder.

And "decent conservative" like "compassionate conservatism" is an oxymoron.
Stay on topic, please. This is about gold and the right wing, not an evaluation of conservatism.

Really Not All That Bright
08-10-2011, 12:07 AM
I see ads for buying gold all the time in "American Rifleman," one of the magazines offered by the NRA. I also would often hear pitches for gold on G. Gordon Liddy's show, both from him and from the commercial breaks. (I rarely listen to his show anymore - Liddy seems lacking in energy and coherence and I think his faculties may be dulling.) In any case, none of these advertisements for gold ever push any kind of "apocalypse" angle. Ever. The idea they always put forth is that gold is a good financial investment - they never imply that people should buy it to use as currency after the fall of civilization!
Did it never occur to you to ask why this particular "good investment" would be so popular to a particular group? Hell, have you never read any of Susanann's posts?

Argent Towers
08-10-2011, 12:10 AM
I don't know. All I know is that gold would be useless if the government collapsed. The best things to have in the event of a real breakdown of society would be guns, ammo, alcohol, painkillers, antibiotics, and birth control.

Marley23
08-10-2011, 12:22 AM
The best things to have in the event of a real breakdown of society would be guns, ammo, alcohol, painkillers, antibiotics, and birth control.
Shoot, a fella could have a pretty good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff.

Argent Towers
08-10-2011, 12:26 AM
Lol. Just watched that movie last week. One of the best.

Diogenes the Cynic
08-10-2011, 12:40 AM
There seems to be an industry of apocalyptic scare-mongering going on with all kinds of venders buying time on talk radio telling teabaggers they have to get ready for the imminent social collapse (which is inevitable, of course, now that the President is a you know what), by buying not only gold, but also crap like vegetable seeds and other apocalypse gear. It's all a hustle. Teabaggers are easy marks. Remember when they all got stampeded into stockpiling ammo? Same thing.

dougie_monty
08-10-2011, 12:51 AM
In April, 1906, just after the San Francisco earthquake and fire, Amadeo Giannini rescued the gold stored in his Bank of Italy (now the Bank of America) by hiding it in his stepfather's vegetable wagon. As a result, his bank was able to honor withdrawals right after the disaster. :)
I used to know an ultra-right winger--Alfred Wayne Roy, my high-school government teacher at Redondo High in the 60s (died about 1990). He once told the class that he had scientific proof that blacks were inferior to whites! And he said he would go into the middle of Watts and say that! :eek:

Diogenes the Cynic
08-10-2011, 12:56 AM
I hope you encouraged him to do that.

Bryan Ekers
08-10-2011, 01:16 AM
I used to know an ultra-right winger--Alfred Wayne Roy, my high-school government teacher at Redondo High in the 60s (died about 1990). He once told the class that he had scientific proof that blacks were inferior to whites! And he said he would go into the middle of Watts and say that! :eek:

Are you sure his name wasn't Rex Kramer? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7S5BP-tvR8)

dougie_monty
08-10-2011, 01:42 AM
I hope you encouraged him to do that.

No, but that afternoon, when I got home from school, I told my Mom about it. She said, "Yeah! And then he'd run like hell!" :D

dougie_monty
08-10-2011, 01:47 AM
Are you sure his name wasn't Rex Kramer? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7S5BP-tvR8)

I'm positive. Mr. Roy may have been a "Danger Seeker"; at least he was a verbal daredevil just to say that in class--although there were no black kids in the senior class that year at Redondo High.

Kobal2
08-10-2011, 02:37 AM
Everybody knows that post-apocalyptic currency will be bottlecaps. Gold. Hah! Do you have any idea how heavy that shit is?

I'll give you 5 .45 bullets, 2 .223 and these three broken shotguns for a burgerIguana-on-a-stick, medium fries and a large nuka cola.

Measure for Measure
08-10-2011, 02:56 AM
If a one ounce coin that you can hold in your hand is worth $300, that's pretty cool. When it's worth $1700, that's really cool. People buy baseball cards, fermented grape juice and wall hangings and call them investments. Part of gold's appeal is its shininess: buyers pay for this mystique with correspondingly low risk-adjusted returns. Is there an intelligent reason to invest in gold at the magnitude ultra-right-wingers recommend? Or is it just more nonsensical Glenn-Beckish paranoia? I dunno: what magnitude do they recommend? Think of gold as another form of currency; like foreign currencies, gold does not pay dividends or interest. If you think the dollar will collapse due to Obamarama, then you are logically saying that another currency will zoom upwards. So why don't the wingers discuss Swiss Francs, Australian dollars or Brazilian reals? Mathematically, not all currencies can decline simultaneously. So clearly, there's an underlying hyperemotionalism operating here.

For more info and some more serious justifications for precious metal investing, try this thread, thoughtfully resurrected today by Bricker: http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=539805

asterion
08-10-2011, 06:09 AM
I have always thought that gold is a hedge against inflation. Assuming you're not talking "apocalypse" and just an economic slowdown with very low inflation, very low interest rates, and a risk of deflation, wouldn't gold be a bad hedge? Not that buying now makes any sense to me either; I find it hard to believe that the price of gold is likely to go anywhere but down at this point.

Really Not All That Bright
08-10-2011, 09:56 AM
I'll give you 5 .45 bullets, 2 .223 and these three broken shotguns for a burgerIguana-on-a-stick, medium fries and a large nuka cola.
Throw in that NCR Ranger badge and it's a deal!

gonzomax
08-10-2011, 10:16 AM
Gold is a medium of exchange that is recognized across the world. It is resistant to inflation because it is somewhat finite in quantity. When greenbacks are worth less and less, the quantity of gold can still purchase at the level it did before.

Hyperelastic
08-10-2011, 01:25 PM
"Ultra-right-wingers" like gold because it's a form of money that can't be easily devalued by the governments they so heartily distrust. Many otherwise respectable people are advocating that the US government just print a bunch of dollars and pay off our dollar-denominated debts with it, thus wiping out the deficit. That's great unless your life savings is in dollars. The prospect doesn't bother liberals as much because their net worth is mostly in designer shoes and subscriptions to "O" magazine.

A dollar bought you 1/35th of an ounce of gold from 1934 to 1971; as of the time of this post it buys you 1/1782nd of an ounce. Even if gold is not an ideal medium of exchange, can you draw a lesson from that?

Ludovic
08-10-2011, 01:35 PM
Many otherwise respectable people are advocating that the US government just print a bunch of dollars and pay off our dollar-denominated debts with it, thus wiping out the deficit.Ahh, yes, the "manny peoples think" defense. Who other than Pat Buchanan is advocating monetizing the debt?

Algher
08-10-2011, 01:35 PM
Just dispel a little ignorance - the hard core True Scotsman ultra right wingers I know and love (both my father AND father-in-law) believe in gold. They don't buy certificates though, they buy actual coins of gold, and also silver in both coins and bars. They store these in various heavy duty safes as their personal inflation hedge, plus also as a means of exchange when we hit hyper-inflation like Germany did (yes - that is the example they use).

Now, less you think that their gold coins won't mean much, these types ALSO stockpile ammo, firearms, powder, etc. As for meds, they are the ones that made sure I had large supplies of Cipro when the Anthrax scare was going one, and the various pills you use in case of nuclear fallout, etc.

I realize it is fun to make a caricature of the paranoid, but in the two cases I am personally acquainted with, they have gone through multiple levels of preparation and security.

Algher
08-10-2011, 01:39 PM
Ahh, yes, the "manny peoples think" defense. Who other than Pat Buchanan is advocating monetizing the debt?

Steve Forbes mentions it regularly in Forbes magazine, and it was part of his campaign as I recall. Ron Paul is another, who has gone so far as to demand an inspection of the gold in Fort Knox - not trusting the governments statements.

Omar Little
08-10-2011, 02:11 PM
Clean water will be the currency post apocolypse.

XT
08-10-2011, 02:22 PM
Naw, you can find little bottles of purified water just about everywhere. And if push comes to shove you can always find dirty water bottles or just drink out of the toilets or sinks, if you are willing to take the radiation hit. A couple hits of Rad-Away and you'll be good as gnew...

-XT

miss elizabeth
08-10-2011, 02:24 PM
"Ultra-right-wingers" like gold because it's a form of money that can't be easily devalued by the governments they so heartily distrust. Many otherwise respectable people are advocating that the US government just print a bunch of dollars and pay off our dollar-denominated debts with it, thus wiping out the deficit. That's great unless your life savings is in dollars. The prospect doesn't bother liberals as much because their net worth is mostly in designer shoes and subscriptions to "O" magazine.

A dollar bought you 1/35th of an ounce of gold from 1934 to 1971; as of the time of this post it buys you 1/1782nd of an ounce. Even if gold is not an ideal medium of exchange, can you draw a lesson from that?

This post is awesome. Subscriptions to "O" magazine! Is it a whoosh? Please say it isn't!

Can I use part of it as my sig?

code_grey
08-10-2011, 04:22 PM
You've been told to stop using this term unless you're posting in the Pit. This is your last reminder.

cite, please. I don't recall any prohibition of the term itself, only of direct application to posters here at SDMB. But I stand ready to be corrected by a hyperlink.

BTW, does the prohibition also apply to "right wing nutjobs"? Or only to terms referring to the left side of political spectrum?

Marley23
08-10-2011, 04:26 PM
cite, please. I don't recall any prohibition of the term itself, only of direct application to posters here at SDMB. But I stand ready to be corrected by a hyperlink.

Here you go. (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?p=14064594#post14064594)
code_grey, enough of the 'libtard' business. It's either an insult or trolling, and I can't even decide which. Either way, knock it off. It's fine to criticize liberal policies if you wish, but stop the name-calling.

Except in the Pit, of course.
Consider it a favor: the less you use words like this, the more likely you are to be taken seriously in a debate.

Hyperelastic
08-10-2011, 04:45 PM
This post is awesome. Subscriptions to "O" magazine! Is it a whoosh? Please say it isn't!

Can I use part of it as my sig?

If your post isn't a whoosh, then neither is mine. Also, the dollar went down from 1/1782nd of an ounce of gold to 1/1791st of an ounce of gold since I posted two hours ago. I am laughing just like that guy in the "Forbes' Insoluble Dry Plates" poster.

Rune
08-10-2011, 06:20 PM
If it is ultra-right-wingers that have been into gold then you now have a large bunch of ultra-right-wingers that not only have been proven correct, but have the money to prove it. Rich ultra-right-wingers with the outstanding morale that comes from having correctly predicted the future and with gold to spend... well, make of it what you want. Personally I think it is a shame if it turns out that gold should be a better investment than stocks. Gold is a zero sum game. Nobody outside those holding it benefits from investing in gold. Investing in companies put people to work, creates prosperity, manufactures things people want.

Der Trihs
08-10-2011, 06:46 PM
If it is ultra-right-wingers that have been into gold then you now have a large bunch of ultra-right-wingers that not only have been proven correct, but have the money to prove it. No, it just means that a stopped clock is right twice a day. Gold like other commodities has its ups and downs; if you constantly recommend buying it, naturally at some point you will be correct. That doesn't mean they have a rational basis for their attitude, nor does it mean that they've made a net profit since they'll also be buying gold when it's a bad idea.

Icarus
08-10-2011, 07:53 PM
Once again I remind everyone that the actual strategy of those advertising "Buy Gold!" is to SELL GOLD - not, in fact, buy it. So, if one were to adopt their actual strategy, rather than their advertising message, one would sell.

Cheshire Human
08-11-2011, 12:42 AM
Most of my life Platinum has been going for more than twice the price of Gold. My mother wanted me to sit in on her session with her financial planner one day, about two years ago because she was having a bad memory day, and I had just seen that morning that the Gold price was actually above the Platinum price. Financial planner and Ma started talking about Gold, and what a bad idea it was. I piped in with "Sell Gold, Buy Platinum!". Financial planner LOLed.

If you want a real investment opportunity, and currently have lots of Gold, trade it for Platinum. Check the historical prices, you'll see... :D

Measure for Measure
08-11-2011, 01:59 AM
There seems to be an industry of apocalyptic scare-mongering going on with all kinds of venders buying time on talk radio telling teabaggers they have to get ready for the imminent social collapse (which is inevitable, of course, now that the President is a you know what), by buying not only gold, but also crap like vegetable seeds and other apocalypse gear. It's all a hustle. Teabaggers are easy marks. Remember when they all got stampeded into stockpiling ammo? Same thing. More generally, the US has a rich tradition of investment scams: diamonds, Florida real estate and coffee futures are but 3 classic examples. Mark Twain provided some colorful accounts. Gold is a medium of exchange that is recognized across the world. It is resistant to inflation because it is somewhat finite in quantity. When greenbacks are worth less and less, the quantity of gold can still purchase at the level it did before. Slow down gonzo. Gold isn't a medium of exchange anywhere: if you want to buy something in an economy with a weak currency you use dollars or euros, not bullion.

Think about it. Gold is a pain in the ass if you want to purchase something. You need to weigh it and have an assay done. Why take on the hassle? They used to do this sort of thing before say 1800s, and every nontrivial transaction involved minute inspection of the quality of each and every coin, as well as tiresome haggling.

As for inflation, there are far better hedges. Inflation protected bonds are one example. More deeply, gold fluctuates a lot in value, both in terms of dollars and at an inflation-adjusted basis.

hijack!
1. code_grey: Please accept this friendly observation: use of the word libtards makes you appear either moronic or ironically moronic. Better phrases are "Liberal loon" or in a pinch "Moonbat". Of course, such language is properly confined to the pit.
2. If we were going to be basing worth on usefulness, it would make much more sense to consider iron, copper, or aluminum the standard for exchange. Adam Smith marveled that water had enormous use-value but was very cheap while diamonds were wholly frivolous (at least in the late 1700s) but very expensive. Today, iron and even copper aren't scarce enough to be a good store of value: they are too bulky. Then again, I understand that light bulbs were used as currency for a while in certain South Pacific islands.
3. Those thinking about survivalist scenarios or civil unrest need to back up and treat the problem with greater rigor before forking out their cash, IMHO.

Jonathan Chance
08-11-2011, 06:21 PM
Der Trihs (whose handle took me forever to figure out), you are my latest nominee! (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=619312&page=3)

Cheshire Human
08-12-2011, 09:38 PM
Der Trihs (whose handle took me forever to figure out), you are my latest nominee! (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=619312&page=3)

You're wasting your time. He's said publicly, many times, that he refuses to attend his own pittings. You'd do better trying to catch him in someone else's pitting.

ETA: But I, on the other hand, am going to read your thread. My first reading of your OP caused me to say "Meh, not worth my time..." The start of the third page, which you linked to, here, seems worth reading...

Kobal2
08-12-2011, 10:21 PM
Then again, I understand that light bulbs were used as currency for a while in certain South Pacific islands.

I'm more puzzled by the cowrie shell economy that used to exist in Africa. How can something be money or have value if any idiot with some time on his hands can just go to the beach and grab a handful of freshly minted seafood-equivalent-of-a-Benny ? And yet it worked.

Economy is just weird.

Max the Immortal
08-12-2011, 10:49 PM
Once again I remind everyone that the actual strategy of those advertising "Buy Gold!" is to SELL GOLD - not, in fact, buy it. So, if one were to adopt their actual strategy, rather than their advertising message, one would sell.

So why is the advertising targeted primarily at right-wingers?

gonzomax
08-13-2011, 12:29 PM
Speed up MEASURE. You can sell and trade gold for currency in just about any country in the world. Gold moves up in price with inflation and turmoil.
A gold coin bought 20 years ago, can be sold for the amount of money that will purchase what it did back then. Your currency can not do that.

BrotherCadfael
08-13-2011, 01:15 PM
In a post-apocalyptic word, iodine will be a far more useful element.Well, with the addition of a little ammonia...

Measure for Measure
08-14-2011, 03:52 AM
Speed up MEASURE. You can sell and trade gold for currency in just about any country in the world. Sure. Same for platinum or Volvos. But gold isn't a currency anywhere: it's not a significant medium of exchange.
A gold coin bought 20 years ago, can be sold for the amount of money that will purchase what it did back then. Your currency can not do that. Sadly, no. Gold fluctuates and holders suffer from long periods of even negative returns. In 1980 gold fluctuated between $500 and $850. Then the price collapsed: $600 wasn't hit again until 2006. That's 26 years before breaking even ignoring inflation.
There's a chart here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Gold_price_in_USD.png

Gold simply isn't a very good inflation hedge (which I concede is odd). Note that the inflation-adjusted line is worse -it varies more- than the nominal dollar line. If gold was a perfect inflation hedge, the inflation adjusted price would be flat. It's not. At all.

Kobal2 If I'm reading wikipedia correctly, a single cowrie shell was worth maybe a penny- they were strung together in strings of 40-100. Though the business was highly profitable, I guess not everyone lived near the beach. At any rate, it wasn't like scooping dollar bills. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shell_money
The shells were used in America, Africa, Australia and Asia. I'm wondering why their use hasn't persisted in some symbolic or niche format to the present day.[1] Lots of 3rd world countries have suffered from high rates of inflation, yet use of cowries disappeared AFAIK.

[1] Ok, it has persisted apparently and I see the value varied considerably unsurprisingly: http://www.pilotguides.com/destination_guide/pacific/pacific-islands/shell_money.php I'd still like to know further details.

gonzomax
08-14-2011, 11:36 AM
VolvoS ?They drop in value when bought and then go surely and slowly down.
Gold has had an inverse relationship from the stock market. If you bought it at 400 , you would have a huge return now. Gold is easily sold. That makes it a medium of exchange. You can sell it for cash at a zillion places. It is not equivalent to platinum at all.
Many years ago, I bought silver. Then the HUnt brothers tried to corner the market to control the price. When they were caught, silver dropped and never really recovered. I doubt anyone can do that with gold.

Measure for Measure
08-15-2011, 03:10 AM
VolvoS ?They drop in value when bought and then go surely and slowly down. So? Buy a used Volvo then. At least you get the use-value in the meantime. The point is that gold is a commodity like any other -- and it's not especially liquid as seen by its large and varying markups. Gold has had an inverse relationship from the stock market. That's actually your strongest point. Gold has a lousy long-run return, but sometimes it zigs when the market zags. It's not negatively related to the stock market (which would be nice), but it's at least uncorrelated with it. As I said back in the 2009 thread: For those interested in investing in gold... I'd recommend other investments. But if you're really really adamant, you should at least read about its properties from someone other than a salesman or political commentator, right? Here's a link: !PDF! : deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/63919/1/fei_fan_2009.pdf http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=539805 Gold is easily sold. That makes it a medium of exchange. I'm using a technical term: gold is not a medium of exchange to any significant extent, although it once was: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medium_of_exchange

Really Not All That Bright
08-15-2011, 10:13 AM
If I'm reading wikipedia correctly, a single cowrie shell was worth maybe a penny- they were strung together in strings of 40-100. Though the business was highly profitable, I guess not everyone lived near the beach. At any rate, it wasn't like scooping dollar bills. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shell_money
The shells were used in America, Africa, Australia and Asia. I'm wondering why their use hasn't persisted in some symbolic or niche format to the present day.
It has, sort of. Coins quite often depict shell engravings. I can think of one each from India, Mauritius, Italy and Greece. I'll dig some out from my collection when I get home.

TruCelt
08-15-2011, 01:22 PM
I think y'all are missing the point entirely. The idea is to find a safe investment which will in no way help the American economic recovery. Removing huge numbers of investors from their usual stocks and bonds investments is meant to keep the economy sour, and help re-elect Republican leaders.

Then when they get into power, they will declare it "safe" to invest in Wall Street, their minions will sell the gold, buy stock, and the leaders will appear to have "Saved" the American people. Of course, none of this has been shared with the majority of the right-wingers, they're just following what they heard on Glenn Beck, or rush Limbaugh, or from their investment advisor buddy down at the gun club.

StusBlues
08-30-2011, 02:46 PM
I'm more puzzled by the cowrie shell economy that used to exist in Africa. How can something be money or have value if any idiot with some time on his hands can just go to the beach and grab a handful of freshly minted seafood-equivalent-of-a-Benny ? And yet it worked.

Economy is just weird.

Cowries weren't native to Africa. They came from India as a ballast cargo on European ships. Their main virtues were that:

1. They were (initially) rare. As they became more plentiful, they experienced the same inflation as other currencies; toward the end, people traded in bags of cowries, not individual shells.

2. They were very nearly indestructable, but did not require the stamping process that metals did.

Fetishization of currency is indeed wierd, but once its in place, it's pretty solid. The only thing that broke cowries was colonial insistance on European currency for taxes.

ShibbOleth
08-30-2011, 03:00 PM
I can't believe we're this far in and no one has mentioned the Yukon Cornelius Effect (http://www.anutinanutshell.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/Yukon-Cornelius.jpg) yet.

JohnT
08-30-2011, 03:56 PM
Speed up MEASURE. You can sell and trade gold for currency in just about any country in the world. Gold moves up in price with inflation and turmoil.
A gold coin bought 20 years ago, can be sold for the amount of money that will purchase what it did back then. Your currency can not do that.

Yeah, but a gold coin bought thirty years ago will be sold for less money than what you paid for it (adjusted for inflation).

http://inflationdata.com/inflation/images/charts/Gold/Gold_inflation_chart.htm

What was your point, again? ;)