When Money Dies by Adam Fergusson
When Money Dies by Adam Fergusson is a classic work in history looking at the hyperinflation that hit Germany and surrounding countries like Austria in the 1920’s. This book is an important part of history and a glimpse into exactly what the U.S. is quickly accelerating towards. Your money can in fact become so devalued that it’s essentially worthless, history proves this.
If you are a regular reader this would be a good piece of history to visit. For the light reader I probably wouldn’t recommend it. It’s a regularly touted book on the subject however, not a particularly enjoyable read. I was a bit disappointed in its structure. It does document a lot of the detail. However, it falls short on really giving an overview of the economic principles and dissection of the key steps to get there or prevent such disaster in the first place.
The scary part is that Germany put itself in such straights in the Weimar republic by simply living beyond their means and continuously kicking the can down the road (very much like the United States insist on doing) instead of taking the sound financial measures to get their house in order. They paid dearly for this. It also illustrates how when the pain begins the masses will demand the government lesson their suffering and this is exactly how they make it so much worse by kicking the can down the road specifically by starting up the printing presses instead of buckling down and really correcting the problem before it gets worse. The German leadership could have prevented this catastrophe by living within their means, and more importantly by not printing money to try and solve the problem.
This is a clear historical case, among many others, that clearly show why the Gold Standard makes sense. When currency is not tied to real value there is no way to stop politicians, almost always corrupted by power, from seizing power by printing money and buying votes. A clear Omen for what our near future holds here in the U.S. So as usual Hit The Books, They Don’t Hit Back!