Sunday, February 3, 2013

Why do you find A/FOA credible?

I know we have a few people here who don't find them credible, so this question goes both ways. We don't know who they were, so we can only judge them on their words which were sometimes cryptic to say the least. So I want to know why you find them credible (or not).

This is a follow-up question to one I asked the group that gathered in Las Vegas. I asked them if there was anything fundamentally different about A/FOA's story that seems to lead certain people to take personal action, people who would otherwise not take action, even given a similar, hypothetical pitch that advises buying something else that's about to explode in price, all else being equal. "All else being equal" includes both the credibility and style of the messenger, as well as the probability of success that you personally give the proposition.

That question obviously doesn't go both ways like this one does, so it was more suited to be asked of a group in which every member finds the story and its messengers credible. But now I want to know why you find them credible (or not), and it's not as simple of a question as it seems.

The following are excerpts from email exchanges I had with two different people. Both of these people were following ANOTHER/FOA in real time in the late 90s (true gold forum "old-timers"), and they each had a different take on A/FOA from the beginning. The first one is from someone who appears in the archives, talking about his initial impression of ANOTHER which he still holds today:


I think you're enamored with Another and see him as far larger than other do.

I never saw him as a big catch - just another guy with lots of opinions and in most all cases his rhetoric was up to the reader to discern. He talked in riddles and rhymes and led people up the garden path. His intent was marketing the USAGold forum when he was on Kitco. He was trolling Kitco [for readers] while MK was trolling for [other popular commenters like me and *****].

He sure attracted those who didn't know, yet wanted to know. But I don't think he was a teacher nor did he have a special message to tell.

If I went back to the LongWave forums I was on back in the 1990's there where dozens of brighter minds with good credentials talking about what was unfolding.

It was known back in 1996 that the end of the LongWave was due - well documented and the unfolding was very well discussed by intelligent cohesive minds who knew what they were talking about and could clearly discuss concepts.

I told my wife when I bought physical in 1999 that we couldn't be selling till 2012-2014 when the end of the LongWave arrived. So much of what has unfolded has been predicted by intelligent people that it just makes a mockery of Another and his ramblings.

Sorry if it sounds harsh but it's my perspective from being around and active on these forums from years ago.

You never met the guy - saw the daily surroundings and subterfuge. It was a game being played.

This second one is from "Solitary Monk", a name adopted from Woland's comment: "So a solitary monk preserved our "Library of Alexandria" from destruction! We owe him a great debt of thanks." SM was reading A/FOA at the same time as the writer above, only he saw something different:

I stumbled upon A/FOA in early 1998, quite by accident. At first, it was totally incomprehensible. I really don't know why, but I felt compelled to understand these writings and kept at it. I followed the postings at usagold in real time. I started acquiring physical with a disciplined approach. In the end, I was pretty much all in at an average cost under $300. With the help of cheap wine and day old bread, I still have every ounce.

In order to keep my emotions in check, I read and reread the archives. Over and over. Again and again. During one of those passes, worried that they might someday not be available, I copied every posting.

I think that there are "threshold levels of understanding" required to 1) buy, 2) hold until the transition begins, and 3) hold through the transition. Each requires a greater level of understanding. I can see from your writings that you know some people will make it through 1) and 2), but not 3). I've been working for a long time to prepare myself to get through 3). Your blogs are one way to help with that.


RJPadavona wrote, "I pride myself on having a good bullshit detector based on all the cons I've been around in my life." This is important. There is something about A/FOA that gives their entire story credibility. An interesting question to the forum might be why people judge it credible. I think it will be hard to answer because it's really a Gestalt effect.

I should note that both email writers went "all in at an average cost under $300," but only SM credits A/FOA with his decision. Another difference is that the first writer above is planning to "catch the top" by selling his gold at the top, which he expected at the writing of the email to be between 2012 and 2014. (That email was written in Sept. 2011, right after gold had just kissed $1,900 and fallen back to $1,800.)

Here's a link for Gestalt psychology which says that our brains may have the ability to perceive a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts, perhaps even before we identify and understand all of the visible parts. I think this may be similar to what I call "infinite resolution" when referring to what I see as the fractal nature of the Freegold story.

As I wrote in Four, something in ANOTHER's words immediately caught my eye and stood out for me against all of the other gold writers I had been reading:

"It was a strange quote, but something in it caught my attention like a beacon as bright as the sun, so I clicked on the link. And for the next two months I stopped reading everything else I'd been reading while I worked my way through maybe a thousand-pages-worth of USAGOLD archives."

Not only did it catch my eye, but I must have found something in his words to be immediately credible because I went "all in" within six months of stumbling upon his decade-old cryptic comments. And even after six months I was still relatively clueless about Freegold compared to today.

I know my answer to the question in the title of this post, and I think it explains why some people find A/FOA credible and some others don't. But I don't think it quite explains everybody on both sides. So I'm looking for something else, something that will complete my answer. And that's why I want to know why you find A/FOA credible or not.

Notice also that I'm not asking why you find me credible or not. I must remind everyone that my blog is merely a tribute to them. So if you haven't read ANOTHER (THOUGHTS!) and The Gold Trail, then please feel free to refrain from projecting your opinion of me onto them. And besides, if you don't find me credible, then what the heck are you doing wasting your time here? ;D



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Shanti-one said...

Same question as in the category - Why does anyone choose for his wife -

Once you go for a destination, you stick with it and enjoy the ride till the end. It's always the the ride rather than the destination what makes the fun.

Enjoy the ride !

Anonymous said...

'Unknown' wrote in the previous thread:

Suppose a large exporter, such as China, which undervalues its currency and runs a large trade surplus as a result, takes a huge radical step and goes all the way to a 100%-reserve gold currency.

Now that would be some buying opportunity, wouldn't it?

A couple of phrases to add to your HMS/silverbug detector:
1) "gold and silver"
2) "China will back their currency with gold"
3) "Chine will make their CNY a reserve currency"
4) "Western central banks"

Now to your question:

a) A/FOA bring in a couple of new ideas and points of view that are not discussed anywhere else in mainstream finance/mainstream internet goldbugdom: gold/oil ratio, oil and international imbalances, understanding of how unallocated gold works, reason for CB gold lending, mark-to-market gold in Eurosystem, CB strategies for currency defence, etc.

A lot of what we observe is explained much better with these concepts than any other attempted explanation I have read in the press/official statements/financial literature.

b) We have a number of independent pieces of evidence that support a number of details they gave us, e.g.
* old GOFO time series
* gold/oil ratio charts
* detailed analysis of gold lending data (Dimitri Speck's idea), in particular the Bundesbank history of gold locations and gold transactions linked by 'ein anderer' in the previous thread
* declassified documents from the Nixon/Kissinger/Ford governments about oil and about how to counter a European "gold block"
* a number of strategy papers from European central bankers

If A/FOA had been just some random attention seekers, OMG, they must have studied macroeconomics, international trade, actual CB transactions, LBMA and must have worked with numerous insiders for decades, just in order to get their story consistent.


LZ said...

I judge the argument on its merits. It jives with the previous gold standard and economic system, one that is no longer taught. You need to get a textbook from the 1960s or earlier if you want an unbiased description of gold in the financial system.

I don't distrust the source, rather I see A/FOA as selling a story. If there was an Internet in 1980, I suspect they would have been posting all over the forum with the same exact message and timing at 20 years earlier. I view them as serving propaganda from the displaced former insiders. I don't see them as cynics sitting on a pile of gold though, looking to start a price driving meme. Rather they believe it and want to effect a change in the system. But they also probably own a lot of gold. I think of Rickards in a similar way: his message is really for insiders, he wants them to start viewing the U.S. Treasury's gold as an asset and put it to use. He's an "insider" because he is among and speaking to them, but he's not really "of" them because he's outside the center of power. But he's doing the advance work to push the idea and maybe earn himself a spot in a future administration's cabinet.

I take them with a healthy does of skepticism, but the arguments stand or fall on their own. Whether or not they are total ghosts doesn't take away from the credibility of the theory, and that is the most important point.

Anonymous said...

Hm, for me the "love affair" started a bit different. I first saw the "red alert" post linked from gata (or somewhere else in goldbugdom).

Just going through that red alert post was painful.

But it got me thinking. And slowly the goldbug message stopped making sense. (especially the "we're all gonna die unless we own lots of gold and silver; preferrably bought [here]" part)

Eventually I went to this blog a few weeks/months later. Stopped reading the goldbug BS, dug into A/FOA archives.

Adjusted my, ehm, portfolio... hey, going from 67.97 SGR to 5.63 SGR wasn't exactly easy. Both in terms of costs incurred and the hassle.

And what sold me? Simple; I hate being marketed to. That aspect is strangely absent in FOA's message (and omnipresent everywhere else).

I'm probably not smart enough to get all the stuff... and I regularly scratch my head at the analysis FOFOA, Victor and others post.

But for me the "gold is wealth, rest is bullshit" message stroke a chord. Helped me to (re-)discover a reasonable way to look at wealth. And at the act of storing it.

To sum up, once I went through a slight paradigm shift, I never looked back.

Agent98! said...

victorthecleaner said...

"Now that would be some buying opportunity, wouldn't it?"

At what starting price, would they try or be able to hold it down, and do they care if not? What do they buy? All bets are off, except they don't even need the full stash to cover it.

FOFOA said...
Why do you find A/FOA credible?


"At some point the fire in Asia will drive all of them into gold. It will end at that time."*

That, and much else, most really, simply gels.

Roos Rule - from a gent in 98! happy I bought in then - call it a strategic pivot ;-) the future is not always as close as perusal of the past may show:

Sean's Summary(sidebar)

Q When will the transition to Freegold occur?

Date: Sun Nov 02 1997 21:52 ANOTHER (THOUGHTS!) ID#60253:

The great mistake by the BIS was in underestimating the Asians. Some big traders said they would buy it all below $365+/- and they did. That's what forced LBMA to go on a spree of paper selling! Now, it's a mess. At some point the fire in Asia will drive all of them into gold. It will end at that time.

*or is it:

Foundational Gold Trail Commentary

Date: Tue Nov 25 1997 13:38

a reply,

Date: Tue Nov 25 1997 13:04

Mr. GP,
(...oil cost supplemented by gold - boosted (gold) mining - boosting wealth as gold - for a time - my take) The great mistake by the BIS was in underestimating the Asians. Some big traders said they would buy it all below $365+/- and they did. That's what forced LBMA to go on a spree of paper selling! Now, it's a mess.

At some point the fire in Asia will drive all of them into gold. It will end at that time.

ALL: I do not offer to prove my thoughts. If what is written was easy for all to find, the information would be of no use to you. Many will take no motions to change their ways and protect worth. Such is life.

Each will chose his way and as always the future will teach the truth.

Kieran O B said...

I was thinking about bringing this topic up in other threads for a while now.

I have went through phases of being convinced to skeptical when reading this blog. My question was the same, how can we hold so much stock in anonymous posters from over a decade ago?

The more I have re-read the more I am convinced that they were insiders at the highest level of the CB world. Another and FOA made sense of the last few decades like no-one else and talked about things not talked about anywhere else.

I have also read FOFOA from 2009 to present again over the last few weeks, and I am just as impressed with how FOFOA has decoded and relayed the words of Another/FOA and then some.

Anand Srivastava said...

"At some point the fire in Asia will drive all of them into gold. It will end at that time."

Thanks Unknown. That line is pure gem.

We are at that point, when Asians cannot afford to get more US Treasuries, they must get gold. Yes it is nearing the end. And many are getting their gold, particularly the Chinese and Russians. Indians are getting more than they can afford :-). And our govt doesn't like it.

Motley Fool said...

Because fabricating such a consistent lie, both internally and ito the real world is impossible. Especially not one that explains what has happened so clearly, and paints the path so rationally, and stays consistent with all new information brought to light, and stays true at every level of examination.

I set out to disprove FG, and was unable to do so, not even in small things. Not much gets by me, so for me to find nothing to find fault with is incredible.

(You did ask for personal reasons/opinions.)

ampmfix said...

I started reading/perusing all the material about gold and silver, to be found in the web daily, in May 2010. That was taking me around 4-5 hours everyday (and a marriage). After reading some of the archives and all FOFOA posts since 2010, I slowly drifted away from the rest of the gold bug articles and daily news, in favor of this blog and the archives. Now, I spend maybe 30' looking over the gold bug stuff, the rest of my reading time is just this blog.

Since I have no economic background (I mentioned already before that I rather study hydrodynamic flow partial differential equations than economic stuff, my brain is just not cut out for accounting stuff), and I am a bullshit master (I dig what you say RJP), all of my belief in Another/FOA lies solely on intuition. A Gestalt phenomenon also if you will. That intuition is nurtured by the comments of the most knowledgeable people here (IMO: Victor, Costata, Jeff, Aquilus, Blondie, Michael H, JR, Motley fool, DP, Aaron, OBA, Aristotle, and some others I forget...)(not in order). Being also very lazy, I rather let other's do the thinking (like a hiena if you want), I just need to be convinced onnce that their message is valuable to me to keep the interest in what they say. And this is why I also need to know as much as possible about the people themselves, in order to ascertain their credibility.
To me, knowing another's identity would make a hell of a difference. If he was Ziljstra (my closer bet yet), all the message is reinforced, but if he was just a character made up to sell us something by Kitco or USA gold, then most of the story would fall apart as looney ramblings.

Some might think that rational analysis is superior to intuition, I beg to disagree. At least for me, even being an electrical engineer, intuition is better suited, but you need both methods anyways.

So yes, Another/FOA "ring" true so far.

And thanks all for doing the thinking! I owe you one!

MatrixSentry said...

The question posed really speaks more to the messengers than the content of the message. The question posed to the FOFCON participants was quite different and focused on the the message itself. As I considered my reply to the FOFCON question, I naturally locked on to the credibility question regarding A/FOA. I realized that while that was interesting in itself, it really wasn't germane to the question at hand. In fact, it was integral to the question that I was to assume that A/FOA were equally credible to any other messenger(s) endorsing a some non-gold investment. So I have already more or less addressed this question.

It will come as no surprise that I find A/FOA to be credible. Amazing since I will likely never know who either of these men are or were. I would say that it is natural to focus on the messenger first until the message can be fully understood. I think this can actually be an impediment in the case where the messenger is perceived to be extremely credible or widely accepted by the crowd. That credibility can leach over into the message and create what we at this blog affectionately refer to as baggage.

As 78 Rubies touched upon, I was impressed that these anonymous fellows were not trying to sell me something. I also liked that they did not beseech me to join some activist movement or prescribe actions to take to force change that would be needed in order to bring forth a new and perfect system of money. They said a better (I interpreted more natural) system was coming, regardless, as an organic response to unsustainable imbalance created by systemic flaws in the $IMFS. They suggested that I might want to front run this inevitable outcome and emulate those who understand what wealth really is.

I found the lack of conspiracy meme increased their credibility. I actually like to read conspiracy because it is entertaining, like seeing an action movie. You realize it is fun as Hell to watch, but in the end to conclude the depicted action is really quite impossible and requires a substantial suspension of disbelief, usually regarding Newtonian physics. Conspiracy involving anything more than 1 person is really a sketchy proposition. It seems nobody can keep a secret.

Physics always appealed to me because the focus was to deconstruct complexity in order to seek and find simple fundamental laws of causation. This process is highly credible in my mind and A/FOA did a wonderful job of deconstructing the money concept. I had never absorbed this deconstruction before and certainly wasn't seeing it elsewhere on the blogosphere. The hard money crowd did a wonderful job of describing gold as money, called it a day, and effectively said we have found the the most fundamental law, Gold = Money = Wealth. Our trailblazers said that fundamental law was even more simple than the deduction or inference, a corollary, offered by the hard money socialists. A theorem, Gold = Wealth.

In the end, their message best correlates with what I observe around me. That makes them the leader in the credibility department. If I ever determine that Gold ≭ Wealth, then I might have to unload some serious baggage I have accumulated as result of A/FOA ;-P

Woland said...

A great story, like a work of art, must cohere at every level.
It is not enough that the story and its' inhabitants appear to
be behave in a plausible manner consistent with their character,
they must survive the most microscopic scrutiny - "God is in the
details". So when Volker and Dewey Dann go to meet Zijlstra,
a conversation is reported verbatim. When Volker goes to
Belgrade, we learn the "why" of the new interest rate policy.
Likewise with the intricate complexity of the oil/bullion bank/
mining forward sales story. These are all details that confirm
the authenticity of an insider at the highest level. And they
just keep on coming, the more you read. Then, later on,
we obtain, as time allows the de-classification of internal
documents, the proof that these observations were true.

My reasons with regard to FOA are only slightly different,
but that is not the subject of this post, and besides, they
are so deeply intertwined that separating their authenticity
from one another is nearly impossible.

Michael H said...

This is not the greatest blog in the world
This is just a tribute
Couldn't remember the greatest blog in the world
Yeah no
This is a tribute

Motley Fool said...

...and now for something that I think we all should read.

Perhaps a Crumble Rather Than a Collapse – Chapter One Of Three

I have not read it all, and have not read part two, which is available, but have read enough of value to say this should be read.


burningfiat said...

Michael H, I LOL'ed!

ein anderer said...

Same as ampmfix, quote: »… all of my belief in Another/FOA lies solely on intuition. A Gestalt phenomenon also if you will.« Although I have NOT yet read the main points of Another/FOA (want to protect my marriage): My intuition says that FOFOA is not fooling, intuition says that he is competent to judge Another/FOA. So there is credibility out of credibility …

RevolutionOfNations said...

For me it was the notion of paying for oil.
It makes sense to me that when you sit on the most valuable commodity in the world, essentially the driver of growth and prosperity for over a century now, you'd like to get paid in something real when trading it away to other nations. Getting paid in paper that nations can just print as much as they want doesn't make any sense to me. They'd want to get something back for trading something as valuable to our economies as oil. The notion of oil nations getting paid or are able to acquire gold through their sales of oil makes sense. Seeing things this way means that gold is and always has been money. Only, it has been kept secret and suppressed by those peddling currency as the only reserve backing the monetary system after the bretton woods collapse. It is understandable that the world monetary powers wanted to keep it this way until a new monetary system for international trade could be designed. Certainly this has bought us time and made the transition away from the dollar as the world reserve possible. It simply just makes sense and explains a lot of the apparently crazy things that seem to be going on in the world of central banking and their respective gold hoards(why do they hoard gold when they keep telling us it has no value?? More than a bit strange don't you think?).

Michael H said...

OT, but I was thinking further about Japan's planned QE for Jan 2014:

$10T JPY per month would be about $100B USD per month at a 100:1 USDJPY. That is larger than the current Fed asset purchase including both USTs and MBSs, and would amount to $1.2T USD annually, which pretty much covers the entire US gov budget deficit and would leave no USTs for the fed to purchase.

I suppose that is a problem that can be 'fixed' by sending the USDJPY much much lower.

Anonymous said...

I found MatrixSentry's comment interesting, about the A/FOA story being more credible than that of the gold bugs because it's not a conspiracy theory. This is far from the first time I've heard this argument in comments here. Well, I guess it's a matter of definition, but for my part, I definitely see elements of conspiracy theory in the Freegold thesis.

Just think about the latest development, Germany demanding some of their gold back from the US. The Freegold interpretation of this (if I may be so bold as to appoint Victor and Motley as "official" Freegold spokesmen in this case) is that the Germans are sending a message: "Look, for us it's all about physical gold now." And they're deliberately shaking the $IMFS boat as much as they dare, without being so obvious about it that they end up in the line of fire. (At least that's how I interpret what Victor and Motley were saying. Please correct me if I got it wrong!)

Now this would imply that the Bundesbank know perfectly well what's coming and what gold's role will be in the future. And yet they have kept absolutely schtumm about this since... well, I guess since at least the late 1990s. And not only have they kept schtumm, but even played a charade all this time about how gold doesn't matter.

And the same holds true for all other central banks that are supposedly in the know, meaning at least the big ones in the Eurozone, plus the Chinese, the Saudis, maybe the Russians, I guess the UK and US as well even if they're on the other side of it. And of course the BIS. That's a lot of people, through many personnel changes, keeping such a big secret for such a long time. Can it really be argued that this isn't a conspiracy theory? (By the way, are the central bankers supposed to have kept this from their national political leaders as well? While at the same time trying to steer them in the correct general direction for the coming transition? Or is that another group that have known and kept schtumm all this time?)

Mind you, I'm not saying that the thesis isn't credible because of this. After all, it would be in everyone's interest to keep the secret, to not be the one that "broke the world". But it does make the theory a somewhat bigger pill to swallow.

Polly Metallic said...

My husband and I discovered Another/FOA and the USA Gold website in 1999. We had become aware of the frailty of the US and global financial systems. The tech stock bubble was obvious to us. The state of the US economy wasn’t fundamentally sound. Phony “wealth” didn’t seem supportable long term.

The rest of the world appeared to have written off gold as important in 1971, and the dollar was all that the world needed or wanted. Another/FOA showed that this was not true. World powers understood that a dollar-centric system had flaws and there must be Another system. While the importance of gold was not perceived by the common man through the 70s, 80s, and 90s, gold was still an unseen component of global wealth and finance and A/FOA explained how and why that was so. This made sense to us and their explanations had the ring of truth even when some of the “story” seemed very intricate and complicated. Gold has served as a store of value through centuries, it is illogical to think that in our era it could be discarded for long. The concept of Giants who had generational wealth to protect, who weren’t foolish enough to trust fiat money, seemed an obvious truth. The idea that entities could have bought all the gold “in size” by the 1990s was not too hard to believe. The explanation for the expansion of “paper gold” to protect and preserve the $IMFS until another system could be perfected also seemed very logical. The focal truth of A/FOA that gold inherently contained price leverage that we couldn’t currently see made sense to us, although the amount of leverage (a price at the time of their writings of $30,000) was difficult to grasp.

We didn’t need to believe in $30,000 gold to know that gold was under-valued. We believed that gold represented an incredible value, and that was enough. If gold never goes beyond its current price we have done very well, but as we watch the evolution of the Euro, the ascent of China as a global power, the hopeless mess of debt in the US, Europe, Japan etc. it seems logical and inevitable that gold will be revalued to salvage the financial mess which is currently worsening and unsustainable.

DP said...

Per Buba's own released data as linked by ein anderer recently, Buba has been keeping schtum about the paper games in gold since well before the 1990s.

Where else but FO/FO/A can you find a narrative that fits so credibly with the picture in that data?

Anonymous said...

@ Motley Fool

"Perhaps a Crumble Rather Than a Collapse – Chapter One Of Three"

Thanks for the recommendation. I wonder when part 3 is available.

Anonymous said...

DP: The Bundesbank data apparently says that the Germans leased gold until 2007. Wasn't the support of the $IMFS from the Europeans supposed to end with birth of the euro back in 2000, according to Another? And hasn't the new post-A/FOA Freegold explanation for why the system didn't collapse on schedule been that the Chinese chose to support it? How does European support for seven more years fit into the narrative?

Max De Niro said...

Pretty simple - I find them credible because they can describe a coherent and realistic endgame. No one else can.

All other descriptions seem to be an outgrowth of some flawed ideology or another. Crises bring these nutters out of hiding as they start talking up their own pet theories, trying to shoehorn the size 12 facts into their toddler sized shoes.

Permanent human debt enslavement, ruled by CBs and megabanks? - nope (actually I think DP may be secretly working on this one
Eternal bleeding of value by incessant paper cuts? - nope. Buy silver...inflation...get rich? nope.
Gold standard? You must be kidding! And on and on and on.

This was the first and only credible endgame description that I had found. Anything else that sounds even remotely sensible has at least some of the elements of Freegold.

Michael dV said...

My answer is simple. It is fofoa that I find credible. Another and even FOA have written in a style (especially Another) that I could never have made it through. It is not simply fofoa's arguments for buying gold however. It has been an overarching explanation of the entire system that got me into physical. I have a list of my top 10 fofoa essays that I pass on to other people who ask. But until I believed that there was a coherent story; only then was I was able to make the level of investment in gold and sleep at night.
It took me a few months but at some point I said to myself "this sounds true and there is no other narrative out there that compares."

Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Another seems credible to me on many levels. His attitudes, social interactions, philosophy and use of metaphor add up to a culture consistent with "Arab oil". His petrodollar narrative represents a credible real world negotiation result. His balance of veiled threat and moderation matches my experience of real world diplomacy. His naivety about the medium and confident experience are free of anachronism. His is not a falsifiable voice from my perspective.

His perspective is limited. His predictions have failed in important ways. He patently was not party to some key secrets. His utterances are 15 years out of date. His preferences (esp monometallism) are local-cultural and do not bear extrapolation.

So for me a fully convincing voice from one place and one time that has been overlaid with an excessive burden of generalisation.

DP said...


The data also shows that the Germans setup a large-scale rolling gold swap for some reason from 1978 until 1997, before then switching to leasing, which ramped from 1997 into 2000 then fell away again into 2007 when there was none.

They also switched most of their sight account gold at the BIS to allocated as well.

Today they are as near as damn-it to "we're all in physical - how about you..?" — perhaps that's got something to do with their choice to make the data public now?

My take on the narrative was that they were providing support to the dying system because they had no other choice, but then it was being gradually withdrawn as Another choice was finally coming online so Europe and the world had the option to switch over to that from $IMFS. That is what I can see unfolding in the data presented by Buba in that PDF. It looks to me like Germany, at least, are all-inn since 2010. After supporting $IMFS since 1978.

300,000 ounces in a BIS sight account seems to me like pretty much small change to a Giant like Buba. Seems to me like pocket change for their cashflow needs.

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ampmfix said...

"crumble" piece reading time = probably 90 seconds flat (both 2 parts).

Motley Fool said...

Haha. Well I concede that some will hate the writing style, but the message I find interesting. I should have been more circumspect in my recommendation. ^^

Knotty Pine said...

"Discernment is the activity of determining the value and quality of a certain subject or event, particularly the activity of going past the mere perception of something and making detailed judgments about that thing. As a virtue, a discerning individual is considered to possess wisdom, and be of good judgement; especially so with regard to subject matter often overlooked by others."

My education started in 2008. I was determined to figure out how to protect my savings from what I saw as an unstable, hazardous monetary system. I discovered Austrian economics, goldbugs, silver psychos determined to build a silver death ray to conquer all evil in the world (sorry Max), etc. I thought I was learning valuable information but none of it really rang true. One of the main reasons given for buying gold,silver,miners as an investment was "look at what happened in the 70's!" IMO everyone was selling correlation as causation. It just didn't pass the bullshit test.

Thank God I found this blog in 2010! I found the blog liberating. I wasn't PISSED at the world anymore (at least not as much). I actually felt grateful to the CB's for buying me some time to get my shit together. This is when I began buying PG (a little silver also). Yes I find A/FOA credible. The story passes the smell test. No one is trying to sell me anything. Correlation is discussed, analyzed, debated. Causation is not rammed down my throat by some slick salesman. My discerning spirit says this blog (A/FOA/FOFOA) rings true.

Thank you FOFOA for making these difficult concepts (at least for me) of A/FOA understandable.

Edwardo said...

I'd like to comment on the first e-mail exchange. I don't know what Longwaves group FOFOA's interlocutor is referring to, but, if it was the one hosted by (I think) U of C, in Boulder, then the writer is vastly overstating the quantity and quality of writing there as it pertained to gold. Martin Armstrong used to drop in on the group infrequently, and folks such as Rick Ackerman, George Ure, and Peter Eliades were regulars, and while they certainly had a lot to say about the Longwave, I don't recall any posts on gold that would warrant an invidious comparison to the writings, whatever their shortcomings, of Another and FOA.

P.S. There was a poster on the Longwaves group named Michael Henry who, right around the time of the epic turbulence in the gold market that happened in '99, was calling for $10,000 dollar an ounce gold to occur imminently. He never mentioned Another or FOA, but I wonder if their writings didn't inform his price targets.

burningfiat said...

Wow, excellent insider info Edwardo!
I thought I smelled a shite poster in that first email-exchange. Confirmed...

Why do I find Another credible? Because he's da baws!

Unknown said...

When the truth is found ... to be lies ... and all the joy ... within you ... dies.

Then read "Thoughts of Another" and find both TRUTH and HOPE (joy).

The credibility comes from a learned ability to discern truth when you read it, from the many many lies coming from the ministers of propaganda within the ranks of Another's social class if you will.

When you read thousands of articles from hundreds of sources, over a period of 3 or 4 years a very imperfect picture of reality begins to take shape from puzzle pieces that don't exactly fit.

The Thoughts of Another are the missing pieces that give the puzzle its missing shape or "view". FOA/FOFOA confirms and adds a few more puzzle pieces.

This is not to say that other voices "don't get it" or are to be laughed at or mocked. They add richness to the tapestry of the puzzle.

We could be right or wrong, time will tell. But in a world so bizzarre it is probably good advice to eggs of different types in many baskets.

Sam said...

I became interested in gold because I read END the FED by Ron Paul. I quickly got pulled into the precious metals world of hard money socialists via the internet but never really liked it much. I think I didn’t like the activism of it all. It felt all too much like democrats and republicans arguing over taxes and welfare. Another’s message was different. He never said we must have freegold to save our world so call your congressman today and let’s march in the streets this weekend. He simply told us where we were going and made total sense of where we had been.

Biju said...

My Answer : As FOFOA mentioned, it was something in their message that made A/FOA credible to me. As soon as I clicked the link of ANOTHER in this blog, I could not stop reading until done and his whole idea about Gold sounded right without any unwanted rhetoric.

"ANOTHER: This brings us back full circle, to the problem of "digital currencies" and the "mind set" of much of the simple ( and rich ) third world persons. To many of these people, wealth is the surplus of life's work that you pass on after death. Currency is something you, spend, trade or hold for a few years. It isn't wealth."

- their logic about oil, gold sounded credible

- they were not trying to sell anything, take it or leave it attitude

- their logic about oil in ground for gold in ground out in the future using paper Gold looked right

- their analysis about poor Eastern mentality about hoarding Gold.

- their theory about currency need to be only a medium of exchange

- they were upbeat about EURO and now we see that it has become currency reserves for a lot of countries. One of FOA's comment - "The Euro will not replace gold, it will evolve into a gold transactional currency."

- I do not have a background in Economics, but their whole explanation of the system process sounded credible.

- they story about front lawn dump, where CB's will buy anything and everything and we see that played out from 2008.

Many Thanks to FOFOA for explaining their cryptic words to us in simple English. What I learned about Gold from FOFOA

"FOFOA : "Writedowns" occur on the asset side of a bank's balance sheet, not the liability side. The liability side is GUARANTEED not to shrink! Remember, the banks' liabilities are really just "the people's" digital money! Banks' "assets" are "the people's" debts. Those "excess reserves" may be reclassified as "bank assets" if further write downs are incurred in their present "assets," but they most certainly will not vaporize! They are base money owned by the banks right now. They are contractual obligations of the Fed to print cash for the banks (when necessary). They are assets of the banks!"

- Gold with high stock to flow ratio
- Gold moving thru currencies
- Currency for spending , Gold for saving
- why do central banks hold Gold.
- Gold is answer to ever increasing volume of US Treasuries, which can be replaced by increasing price of Gold. ie Price compensates volume and settle World trade.
- Gold at bottom of Exeter pyramid.

Anonymous said...

This is my first post here.

I find Another/FOA credible because they were writing some very interesting things about gold as the bear market was bottoming in the late 90s/early 2000s. I don't know anybody else who was, or at least not anybody else who attracted such a following.

Now think back to that time. The USA was booming and there were clear skies as far as the eye could see.

And yet they turned out to be right! In stark contrast to the vast, vast majority of people who are in fact paid to analyze these markets.

So in that spirit, we should strive to maintain a skeptical and jaundiced view of things, yes, even gold should circumstances change.

RJPadavona said...

Well, to give credit where it's due, it was FOFOA's writings that first caused me to question the actions I was taking. Without him, how on Earth would I have ever been exposed to A/FOA?

So, why do I find A/FOA credible?

As FOFOA mentioned, I pride myself on having a good bullshit detector based on all the cons I've been around in my life. And I've kept my detector skills honed throughout my barbering career. Con artists need haircuts too, right? :)

After reading A/FOA, it was very obvious to me that these guys were insiders. Especially considering the time period when they were writing. Hardly anyone was even using the Internet back then, much less reading some obscure gold forum. Why would anyone who's not selling something go to this much trouble at that point in time to make up such an elaborate hoax? Their knowledge was also too detailed and accurate for that to be the case.

If I had to pinpoint a certain part of their writings that really made me realize what they were saying was legit, it was their explanation of the timing of Volker's actions of raising interest rates in order to prolong the life of the dollar and those actions being encouraged by the European central bankers. As you all know, this was done in order to buy more time for the establishment of the euro currency. To my knowledge, that type of analysis and reasoning can't be found anywhere else on the entire world wide web, yet it made more sense to me than anything else I'd ever read about the course of events that led us to where we are today. It was then that I realized I'd stumbled upon something very special.

And here we are, years later, still discussing the same brilliant writings of a couple of anonymous dudes who (for whatever reason) took the time to etch in history their interpretation of where we've been and where we are going.

As The Years Go Passing By



I can't speak for Ron, but I assume what he meant was that FG is not part of some "sinister" conspiracy theory like the ones you see on so many websites. But by my definition, yes, you're right, what A/FOA described in their writings does have a conspiratorial element to it.

So that leaves us with the question "with all these conspiracy bloggers out there, how come A/FOA don't get any coverage?" My guess is because the conspiracy they revealed is one where certain central planners established a new monetary system that would prevent the world from descending back into something resembling a barter system. And that doesn't really fit into the whole theme of shadowy elites plotting to enslave us all in FEMA camps and exterminating 2/3 of the population with chemtrails and vaccines or whatever the fuck they say nowadays.

The power structure remember the French and American revolutions. They know the public will break out the torches, pitchforks, and guillotines if living conditions get to the point where people no longer want to comply with the status quo. And what's the best way to keep the power structure from being overthrown in this modern age of consumption? Make sure commerce is able to flow so people can continue to buy all the shit they want.

As Another explained, this is one of the main reasons the euro currency was established: To ensure that the world transitions into a new monetary system "without war". I tend to interpret that as not only wars between nations, but internal wars as well.

Without a stable currency, what we have is a failure to communicate.


Indenture said...

I was never concerned with Another or FOA. I read FOFOA and credibility sounds as if the word is defined by an exact moment, a point where the question is asked and answered but I tend to look at the dynamic of the loosing of credibility from a basic foundation of trust. I clearly remember trying to introduce a member of my family to the writings of FOFOA and the idea that I trusted anyone who would dare post as anonymous was beyond my sibling ability to read the words. The fact that a name wasn't attached to these ideas, a name that could be scrutinized for authenticity and origination, a name that could somehow validate the prose was in fact a beginning and an end to the discussion. For me, perhaps the simple minded of the family, the credibility was blatantly obvious. While most every other writer was talking about what was going to happen this FOFOA guy was telling the story of why things happened. So I had an author who was enjoyable and different and who taught me enough to want more. But then to turn each piece into a professional economic discussion was beyond anything I had ever experienced. Have you looked around at the people who comment on this blog? The intelligent voices who throw out monetary theory names and numbers like a baseball fanatic talking about last years season are a background hum of cognitive consent that was instantaneously recognizable to me from week one. FOFOA is a guy who writes about economics with a smooth voice and fluid prose, keep up the good work, but I also recognized that the people who contributed their time and efforts by writing in the comment section solidified the deal. I had to understand what was being discussed. Thus far I see no reason to alter my initial response and I am still learning.

Biju said...

Though we are all from different backgrounds, I think the folks who are here for the discussion must have a certain common denominator in their way of thinking or.

There must be something common in all of us to appreciate A/FOA's freegold theories.

About myself I can certainly state that

- I do have a contrary opinion about most things
for instance now : I like buying house in USA, Gold and don't like stocks.

- I like catching falling knife when it comes to buying assets

- never believe main stream media interpretation of past/present events.

Anonymous said...

The message of all those on this blog has rung true for me because it has allowed me to live at peace.

My job is to build systems, analyze their faults, see the opportunities and problems many steps ahead. Much of this engineering centers on systems at scale and under duress, when architectures show their true nature. Root cause analysis is rarely the domain of the expected, the stuff of simple questions and obvious answers.

To paraphrase, once you have eliminated the improbable, whatever is left is the truth.

I was afforded an opportunity to lose myself in thought every day while commuting on foot from 2008-2011, and much of that time was spent analyzing the world in which I would have to preserve my wealth. I pondered new monetary systems, considered points of failure, postulated on the effects of technology on the social and economic fabric that had struggled to stay static in the face of overwhelming change, considered the shifting perception of time of a long-lived space-faring species.

I also had come upon this blog, somewhere around the Metamorphosis time frame, and found its message to be clear as day. There was no sell, no judgement, only Thoughts. In time, thoughts that put me at ease, thoughts which allowed me to save for a lifetime, and perhaps beyond. My means are small, but they are the only means I and my kin have any assurance can be saved for another day.

I live at peace, and that is why A/FOA/FOFOA is credible to me.

Biju said...

thinking about the high stock to flow ratio for Gold - approx 100. I was thinking what other asset has that high ratio. One asset that comes to mind is Housing market., which also has a high stock to flow ratio.

- So what is the difference between Housing and Gold ?

- One difference I can see is that Currencies move through housing, housing in itself is not the final objective for most, unlike giant hands in Gold. whereas Gold moves through Currencies and it is final objective for them.

Anonymous said...

To elaborate further, many choose to analyze the world in terms of what should be, or what is desired, rather than what is. It is the stuff of politics, war, discord and uncertainty. I've long had a sense of the Superorganism in terms of its macro and micro manifestation, long viewed the world in terms of a tapestry of self-interest.

From that perspective, and from the mechanics and math of the interacting topologies of savings, currency and goods, it has always been clear to me that every consideration of what's "wrong" and how to "fix" it was predicated on false assumptions of cause and effect.

What has kept me here all these years is a steady diet of Thoughts which shed the baggage of right and wrong, my place in the world versus the Giants, and instead focus on the natural, fluctuating relationship between the physical and ephemeral.

It was, in many ways, the Rosetta Stone joining the world we know in terms of information with the world we will know in terms of finance. They are one in the same, an endless sea of independent actors moving in concert to the rhythm of mankind.

The credibility of these authors stems not just from a coherent telling of the past, present and near future, but from a deep truth about the distant future of mankind that is already glimpsed today in the greatest social medium the world has ever seen.

M said...

Before I read or knew about freegold, the anti gold bug crowd would always get me on the inelasticity of the gold standard. But before freegold, my retort always was that central banks would require a certain amount of reserves in gold. Which is not a gold standard per se but it would stop the printing and induce a natural recession.

But the basic concept of freegold is the real deal. Its so dirt simple.

Aaron said...

Biju said-

"thinking about the high stock to flow ratio for Gold - approx 100. I was thinking what other asset has that high ratio. One asset that comes to mind is Housing market., which also has a high stock to flow ratio.

So what is the difference between Housing and Gold?"

Housing is neither portable, durable, divisible, nor fungible.

byiamBYoung said...

As someone who works in fact-based marketing, and someone who has lived in the world of advertising and brand building, I have developed a keen ability to sniff out horseshit in the different messages that fly at us every day.

We call the little twists that change honest statements into self-serving mistruths ... weasels.

In A/FOA's writings, there are no weasels. They are starkly forthcoming. I have to admit, though, I get bogged down reading them unguided.

That is what makes FOFOA's work so valuable. His "woolly" writings are a far more accessible glimpse into the absolutely "wookie" writings of A/FOA.

It is invaluable to have a weasel-free zone where the most important issue that will affect our lives is discussed in such an unvarnished, fully vetted manner.

Which reminds me, I think I'm due to hit the tip jar.


Anonymous said...

"Why do you find A/FOA credible?"
and for that matter
"Why do you find FOFOA credible?

Everything written on the Internet can be either True or Not True. Our "detectors" tell us if it's Credible. It still may not be True though. Over time we learn to trust our "detectors" but they are not infallible so we chuck-in a certain amount of blind faith. People who rely on logic are just fooling themselves. Logic never has all the facts.

So the "credibility" of A/FOA and FOFOA is credible until my "detectors" say they aren't.

Just one small thing FOFOA. When you find yourself using the phrase "in other words" please go back and put your thoughts into a form that doesn't need this explanation.

Robert said...

A/FOA/FOFOA have given me a broader perspective. In terms of time, I now think in decades. In terms of possible revaluation, I see the potential for a tectonic shift of a magnitude far larger than I could have ever imagined before. In terms of the relationship between gold and oil and other currencies, I see connections now where before I only had a blind spot. Are A/FOA credible? To me, that seems like a very odd question. Credible in what sense? As though they have secret insider information? As though they are prophets who mapped out the path to collapse and revaluation? As though they are there to invisibly hold my hand if I decide to take the plunge and go "all in"? I do not think those are their gifts to us. I think they are credible in the sense that they give us a different perspective about how to see things.

I am not one of the "all in" crowd. I have no certainty that I will live to see a great revaluation in my lifetime. But if I do, I can say that it will not catch me by surprise! Because I refuse to go all in (at least not yet), I may not become as rich as all of you, but I will do well enough!

Although I lack the faith that many here have shown, I still have great respect for A/FOA/FOFOA and I am grateful for this blog. For me, having a different perspective that gives me peace of mind is what validates their credibility.

Bullion Baron said...

RJPadavona said... Why would anyone who's not selling something go to this much trouble at that point in time to make up such an elaborate hoax?

As someone who has observed a pair of trolls run-a-muck across a bunch of sites all pertaining to a specific subject, using their techniques to squash conversation elsewhere, writing elaborate stories and hoaxes to misdirect and confuse over a period of 5+ years, with minimal self interest reasons for doing so... I can tell you these people are out there. They are probably mentally/emotionally unstable and get a thrill out of deceiving and irritating others. Do not underestimate the lengths some will go to in order to troll on the internet.

I have only read bits and pieces of A/FOA. To me it's just a story. There will never be a way to verify what he really did or didn't know, although I'm sure if we saw a Freegold system eventuate in the near future it would further solidify the faith of those here that he was an inside man.

I enjoy reading about Freegold as it seems like a workable solution, but that doesn't make it inevitable.

ein anderer said...

duggo said:
"When you find yourself using the phrase "in other words" please go back and put your thoughts into a form that doesn't need this explanation."
Redundancy is often of great help for me. Thanks, FOFOA.

Off topics (?):

(thanks Markus Gaertner

FOFOA said...


When dealing in principles and concepts, "in other words" is a handy device. In fact, I try to state important concepts in as many ways as I can think of in order to help you get past your dogmatic "modern" (MSM) interpretations as quickly as possible. I have done it this way for many years, and that's why I'm annoyingly unrepentant about the length of my posts. But at least "in other words" only has four syllables in toto. ;D


Motley Fool said...

FOFOA works for the Department of redundancy Department, except that it isn't, redundant, due to the redundant ways, means and methods by which differing and different people interpret thoughts, ideas and concepts, differently. ;)

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

ANOTHER: I think Norway is a fine country and strong people, but do they not also use the US$ as a reserve currency? In the future, if they sell "black gold" for "real gold" or the Euro, all will be well, except their banking system will fail from dollar holdings! They be not dumb, and will reach for the true values as will all others. To add to your words I offer: They may experience the: initial "Disadvantage" in staying out of the EMU for the time being, but time does change many thoughts!

50sQuiff said...

It was something about the tone of their writings, especially FOA. Humble, patient, philosophical and deeply erudite. So much of what is missing from the internet today, present company excluded. The idea that these two were just another couple of shills or wind-up merchants (British vernacular) seems improbable.

It was actually Aristotle's five-part 'Hall of Fame' series that truly captured my attention and imagination). Still one of the finest works I've read on the internet.

Rien said...

For me, credibility only comes from logical arguments.
After studying the financial markets for .. oh .. some 7 years, I discovered that the real problem of the financial system was the usage of the same thing/concept for SOV and MOE.
But then I got stuck, I never got past that stage.
For whatever reason it never occurred to me that using gold as SOV and fiat as MOE would solve this problem neatly.
Thus when I found A/FOA (through this site) it all did "CLICK" and I never looked back.
I find A's thoughts about oil interesting, but not more than that. Timing is also interesting, but not more than that. Ultimately it all boils down to the solution that freegold offers. And there is no denying that freegold is a/the solution. I remain unconvinced about the price point and unconvinced about the role of silver or oil. But these are minor points.
Is A or FOA credible? I truly don't know and don't care. Freegold is credible and that is all that matters.

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

ANOTHER: The Swiss, not dumb! There will come a time when gold and Euro are as "the same". Not in price or value, but as used for "real money". The Swiss will sell, just not as you think "sell". In that time, gold will be "transferred" to other Cbs as money or real reserves.

...hmmm, has somebody read Ferdinand Lipps Goldwars?

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

1 ) Why then did Hashimoto threaten to sell US SECURITIES and buy gold?

He will do both, but not in order or in amounts supposed. The BOJ is buying gold now , much more than assumed. They will sell US debt but only after a rising oil price runs the US$ thru the roof. Even then it will be as minor currency management!

okay, I'll stop here. But basically looking at all these "predictions" and comparing those with how reality turned out, does not leave much credibility in those predictions.

Placidus said...

Credibility of Another/FOA exists on many fronts. Many here have covered it eloquently already. It seems to me that much of what they stressed, physical gold accumulation, has turned out to be quite practical for so many, many reasons (not to mention the peace of mind factor of being paid in full!). Much of what they wrote about has/is unfolding now. There was also a sense of urgency (they wrote often about the topic, which I interpret as thoughtful enthusiasm and generosity). Think about what has already come to pass? There has been an erosion of purchasing power of currencies. While this is not yet the HI that FOA talked about, it is still increasingly difficult to ‘get by’, let alone save. What an opportunity existed to accumulate physical at such low prices when they were posting! What requires significant hard labor to accumulate now could have been acquired almost effortlessly (and cheaply) in the late 90’s. What have stocks done? The DOW was perhaps in the 8000 – 10000 range and the major move of the 90’s was wrapping up at the time they were posting. Where have stocks gone since then? What about mining stocks? When I look at the charts of some of the major gold mining companies, they look pretty flat since the 2000-2004 time frame. Some are lower now! Not the best leverage! They did a huge favor for those who listened at that time.

enough said...

Confirming evidence enhances credibility.....

reported a few hours ago, China imported an all time record 114.4 tons of gold in the month of December. This means that for all of 2012, total China imports of gold have hit a staggering 834.5 tons, double the 431 tons in 2011.

South Korea one of the more notable buyers. South Korea’s reserves increased nearly 30%, from 1.750 million troy ounces in June to 2.260 million troy ounces in July, or roughly 70 metric tons.

Brazilian holdings expanded 14.7 metric tons in November to 67.2 tons, the most since November 2000, according to data on the International Monetary Fund’s website. The country bought 17.2 tons in October after adding 1.7 tons in September, the first increase since 2008.

Iraq bought gold during August-September, lifting its official precious metals reserves from 5.8 tonnes to 31.07 tonnes.

Russian holdings climbed 2.1 percent to 957.8 metric tons in December, taking the increase over 2012 to 8.5 percent, according to data on the International Monetary Fund’s website. Kazakhstan’s hoard expanded 1.7 percent to 115.3 tons last month, and surged 41 percent over the year, the data showed.

ENOUGH SAID........... :-)

Biju said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Biju said...

Aaron said :
Housing is neither portable, durable, divisible, nor fungible.

True, added with the point that super-organism one day will choose Gold as the reference point.

But purely based on STF ratio, when we see STF hit very high like housing in US now, it sure looks like a good time to buy.

Starting 2005 in US, the flow increased due to home foreclosures and builders(like Gold miners) having to sell and STF fell in my calculation and caused housing prices to start falling.

Since March 2012, we see that flow(inventory for selling) in housing has dramatically decreased)
due to many factors like foreclosure pricing falling below building cost in some areas(Florida, inner California), which is now increasing STF ratio.

Gold being considered as international reference after dethroning Dollar, may take longer.

Anonymous said...

My 2c re: housing.

Credit remains too easy for it to have bottomed. Anecdotal evidence: my friend in D.C. who is a real estate agent told me I could easily get a $500,000+ house on a $80k/yr income.

Also a buddy of mine with a comparable income got a $250k condo with no down payment (actually he got a loan to make the down payment, a 'down payment assistance loan' or something lol).

I could go on with more examples, like ads encouraging people to engage in house-flipping. The whole thing stinks to me. I wouldn't touch housing with a ten foot pole. The exception might be if I actually wanted the property for its utility to me and it was more affordable to get a mortgage than to rent. But even then I'd be wary of it.

The best buying opportunity for housing will come either during or shortly after hyperinflation IMHO.

Tyrannyofthepresent said...


You said: "Housing is neither portable, durable, divisible, nor fungible."

Many apartments and town houses in European cities have stood for hundreds of years. Their maintenance costs are higher in percentage terms than gold

It is possible using REITs and even conversion of houses into apartments, but only to a limited extent. Remember that a recognisable 1 ounce coin loses its premium if divided.

Housing is not perfectly fungible, but it is fungible to a limited extent - again in prime European cities, one apartment in a given neighbourhood is often much like another.


The stocks to flow ratio is much lower than that of gold. In the UK the average is about 6% or 15x (recent Daily Telegraph article gives a range of 60 to 150k transactions per month on stock of around 16m). Lower turnover/higher ratios in other European cities. Stock to flow ratio is an interesting metric. A Google search for the term throws up predominantly direct or indirect references to this blog. How well established is the importance of this factor, I wonder?

I have seen Prime London properties ($5m to $50m bracket) and UK farmland described in more than one relevant context in the last few years as "good proxies for gold". Buyers of multiple such properties are clearly not shrimps.

This is the one that matters. You cannot pick it up when it is time to slip away from the locals and their taxing, scapegoating govts.

ampmfix said...

The portable, durable, etc... qualities are all mutually inclusive, so there must be and AND operator between all of them.

Housing misses this AND operation between durable and portable only:

In general, the more housing is durable, the less it is portable and viceversa (castle vs winnebago).

Cris said...

Cris said...

This brings me back to the German gold reserve. As sporadic backwardation in gold becomes ever more frequent, the gentlemen in charge of running the world’s fiat money system get alarmed. The only way to pacify the market is to release more and more central bank gold. Physical gold. The beast must be fed. Paper gold will not do (although, of course, these gentlemen will keep trying to flood the market with it).

Releasing American gold to the futures market directly from the Fed is out of the question. It would confirm the suspicion, already rampant, that the dollar is a colossus of clay feet standing in knee-deep water. So let the client states of America do the releasing. The Germans have a reputation of favoring hard currency. They are reluctant to join the currencies’ ‘race to the bottom’. Germany is the natural choice to feed the gold futures markets in an effort to protect the dollar against the last assault that is shaping up.

Cris said...

For a long time America has been twisting the arm of other countries, including the U.K. and Switzerland, making them sell hundreds of tons of central bank gold, while America was not selling one ounce. “Do as I say, not as I do!” During all this time Germany was not selling either. The appearance was maintained that this decision was made in Germany. It wasn’t; rather, it has the mark “made in U.S.A.” German gold is the last defense of the dollar. By now practically all central banks ignore the siren song from America. From sellers they have become buyers of gold. According to the American master plan Germany is the last fort of the crumbling global fiat money system. Germany will not defect: that is the purpose of keeping American troops on German soil. Germany will dutifully do the job of feeding the futures market with gold in an effort to fend off permanent backwardation. The repatriation of a part of the German gold reserve is a trial balloon. If markets get scared and panic selling occurs before the Bundesbank starts selling, so much the better. But if false-carding fails and the world-wide march of gold into private hoards continues unabated, then let the Bundesbank, not the Fed, bleed gold. America’s gold must be spared at all hazards.

milamber said...


Quite simply I find them credible because no one has disproved the Freegold thesis. Does that mean that A/FOA were correct on every prediction they made? No, of course not. If that is what one is looking for to establish credibility, then keep looking.

I liken A/FOA as insiders representing two different but aligned groups giving western goldbugs on Kitco and USAGOLD a little inside baseball about what the non IMF aligned faction is doing to prepare for the dollar failure. It is a shame that ORO (as well as others) attacked FOA on the board after 9/11 and then he cuts off all communications. But it is what it is.

Keep up the good work.


P.S. If possible, I am still looking for an answer to my value question. Don’t know if you saw it while you were partying in Vegas :)

Milamber Value Question

Aquilus said...

Just trollin' with FOA on Oct 20th, 2000:

Clearly wrong, no? None of that happened in 2000/2001. Good thing he was just trollin' and none of the parts in bold have any base in our reality:

The lesser of the two evils today (and this is the one the ECB / BIS enjoys watching) is our current frozen policy. We can no longer cut off the strong dollar / growing deficit circle by raising rates and invoking a recession as in the past. This time we must continue to pump the reserves at all costs in a process that only floods the world with more dollars. It's called a currency hyperinflation and is one we (as US people) have never witnessed in modern times. The pressure has built up full volume now as all escape valves are being closed. We are well on the way to a derivatives exploding event that will break into the open with a cascading dollar and full force US price inflation.

This is the "why" for the gold derivatives policy that Physical Gold Advocates are now enjoying. Also one that leveraged paper gold investors are being tortured with. In effect, we "gold buyers" are trading 1971 style dollar derivatives contracts for the physical gold we never could get then. And doing so before a 1971 style gold event that comes in the form of a denouncement of the contractual viability of all gold contracts. Let's call it "no gold for dollar derivatives"!

All the while, just like in 71 other "chUmps" (smile) are saving these same paper gold substitutes to protect themselves from this same crisis.
Further; many of them have sold their physical gold for use by the BBs. I think SteveH calls it OPG (other peoples gold). This is where the real supply that fills a Physical Gold Advocate nation's coffers (and mine) comes from. It's truly a good deal in light of what's coming. Let's not mess it up by talking about who is buying all that gold, rather just point everyone to watch how much is being sold!

The US cannot walk away from hiking our ""gold trail"" now. Because "this process" is one of the few tools available to them for keeping the dollar perception in a good light. In effect by slowing the currency transition process they are doing exactly what world dollar holders need the to do. They will inflate these derivatives until in effect; our modern gold market bankrupts itself as supply is exhausted. I say, good! (smile) But once we get to that stage, I expect that a super US economic downturn will ensue. Then the fed will go wide open and cover everything in sight to keep us going! The ongoing price inflation will be driving everything from physical gold to real estate through the roof.

sean said...

- Their explanation for gold price suppression doesn’t require a complicated, concerted effort by “dark forces” conspiring to manipulate the market, but simply requires understanding the subtle effects that gold leasing has on the market.
- As difficult as they are to understand for the Western mind initially, the explanations they put forward are ultimately logically simple, and by Occam’s Razor if nothing else, believable. Eg: gold prices fiat, not fiat prices gold.
- They don’t assume the actors involved are “stupid”. Eg: why would the Arabs keep buying oil at low dollar prices, even when it is obvious the dollar has a finite life-span? Hubris replies “because they’re stupid”, but a simple change in perspective shows they are not!
- Their explanation of Freegold presents a Hegelian solution to the contradictory requirements of an ideal monetary system – ie: as a means of exchange that can expand as required, and as a stable store of value.
- Their explanations tally with the time-scale of development of the Euro, and quirks of its design (such as marking-gold reserves-to-market) make perfect sense in the context of Freegold.
- In a world of spin, they are rare voices that appear to have no obvious “ulterior motive” other than to educate and inform, in an infinitely polite and civil manner.
- Also I can’t deny the appeal of a contrarian argument from anonymous sources a decade ago!

Unknown said...

Unfortunately (sad but true) so many things that people expect to someday violently happen (like dollar hyperinflation) have been in motion for years ... so to just piggyback on this notion of (normal, not hyper) price (not dollar) inflation ...
Aside from the fact that the FED'S (and nearly ALL) official statistics are colored according to the perceptions the statisticians intend to manage ... the true nature of price inflation has been carefully masked in myriad ways, as corporations have become much smarter about how to spread the impact of overhead cost increases by:

1) employing foreign labor
2) laying off domestic labor
3) technology use for greater efficiencies
4) fraudulent packaging
5) cheaper ingredients
6) shifting profit centers (e.g. from sales to financing)
7) subsidizations
8) bailouts
9) and the list goes on ...

The last thing producers of price sensitive products want to do is RAISE PRICES or allow the perception of increasing prices in our hyper-sensitive shoppaholic consumerist USA paradigm. Elsewhere? Can't speak to that ...

So aside from the fact that calculations are fudged, what we are calculating is shape-shifting as well.

The raw inputs are harder to mask, but the true cost of many working class staples that are calculated in an inflation measure are a bit more difficult to calculate in real terms than just the perceived stability (or marginal increase) of month over month "price".

Unknown said...

Sean, I agree with your comment above. I simply cringe when I read how "Bernanke is clueless" as the asinine answer to every policy maneuver. The people who run monetary policy are doing the only thing they can do ... buy time. It is the system they are boxed into, and the walls built through successive stages in time, that define their actions.

Idiots should strive to offer better alternatives, rather than to just play the "stupid card".

I am reminded of the old TV series inspector "Columbo" who would would feign confusion as he placed his fingers upon his temple stating, "There's just this one thing I don't understand..."

Yes, clueless alright ... like a fox. :)

burningfiat said...


As a response to:

I'm afraid good old Antal has lost it...
This piece completely ignores the Euro (and how it complements gold, and gold complements Euro, via its MTM gold reserves) except for this sub-par passage:
The gold mark could circulate side-by-side with the irredeemable euro and dollar. Let the people decide whether they want to get paid in crisis-prone fiat currencies or, perhaps, they prefer the time-honored stability of the gold coin. It is hardly in doubt what the choice of the people would be.

IMHO Gresham's law will once again prove its worth and Antal and other HMS's will be disappointed by the missing circulation of gold (the circulating medium coming out on top will be the honest one. The one made of paper and/or bits'n'nytes, but not pretending to be anything else).

I don't believe German gold will be used as a pawn for US gold. If ever deployed it will be in a European context.

BTW, British troops already packing:

Tommy2Tone said...

Sandeep "sandy" Jaitly vs. Frances "Francis" Coppola on twitter.
Funny stuff:)

Anonymous said...

I'm coming from the gestalt-intuitive point of view. I read a book once profiling about twenty successful investors, and one was John? Templeton. I got a picture of a very rich, cool operator hanging out in the Caribbean with his Rolls, observing the markets and scooping cash almost at will. One of those guys who quote the Greek and Latin classics. Another/FOA seem of that school. Playing at money as philosophy, insider informed, calm insightful discourse, none of the bulging-purple-neck-veined hysteria of the vulgar rabble...I love the humor and ease of the discussions here on this blog, as well as the astute and wide-ranging judgement calls and informed guesses from different quarters.
I was "all-in" in disposition since reading "How You Can Profit from the Coming Devaluaton" 30 years ago or so...but in the last year came into some money to go "all-in" with. I also bought a little silver for "change" barter.

john said...

I stumbled upon the trail and thoughts perhaps 2 years ago. Before that I was taken in by silver buggery ;) a bit, but not too far. Tried my best to decipher the trail and thoughts, it was incredible when I could understand bits and pieces but frustrating when not. I have to admit though at times the whole FG concept can seem its own, excuse me, 'religion' . With another as the old testament, friend of another as the new testament, and now here we are 'reborn'. However, here we have all of the clear headed arguments for FG without the fire and brimstone of any other financial wizardry site. Yes all this sounds as if I, and maybe you too, are just wanting to belong...wanting to be part of the club... wanting to be saved from eternal financial damnation... :) Hell, who doesn't? But it's more than that. I believe the original writings were genuine, and the continuation here is genuine, by good people wishing to do good things. I too can smell honesty, even over the internet at 10,000 miles. Yes, I can.

byiamBYoung said...

Several times, I have asked what I believed to be a well thought out question here, and have been gently thumped between the eyes with an answer that in hindsight appears so obvious that I am left with no explanation for why I missed it in the first place.

Let's do it again!

Thinking about mining companies. They live for gold. They eat, sleep, breathe gold.

Are they unaware of this site? OH, I doubt it.

So, if (as I suggest they must be) they are aware of this site and the Freegold concept, is there any aspect of their behavior that shows how they are reacting to the concept?

Are they holding back a hoard of physical? And if not, then why not? If the product they are selling for, what, $1600/oz. is really worth $55,000/oz., wouldn't they be at least showing signs of stuffing supply under the rug?
Anyone got data?

(Mentally centering myself in preparation for the thump between the eyes)



Has anyone looked at setting up their IRAs as an LLC? From what I can tell, when doing this, you are able to hold your gold in your hands. It would be worth several hundred dollars in legal fees to be able to get out of the "physical gold" funds and into physical gold.

FOFOA said...

Hello Milamber,

An answer to your question! ;D

Price is objective and value is subjective, yet both words can be used as either a noun or a verb. But in this context, it makes more sense to use value as a verb because we are expressing the vital directionality of an exchange. I used value as a noun, which implies an objective measurement, which is probably what tripped you up.

In the original post, my line follows a quote from Another in which he used "value" as a verb to show the directionality of one thing needing the holders of another thing to value it, and I was trying to contrast it using the same word, but I should have structured the sentence to use it the same way he did. In my line I used "set" as the verb but the intent was the same as Another's.

If the currency price of your stock goes to zero, the stock is valueless in currency terms, and currency is priceless to the holder of that stock. But if the price of a currency denominated in real gold goes to zero, that currency is valueless in terms of real gold and real gold is priceless to that currency holder. It's the real gold holders bidding for currency with their real gold that sets the value of that currency in real gold terms, not the other way around like it is with stocks and other investments:

"All modern digital currencies do not go into an investment, they move THRU it... There is an alternative. Gold! It is the only medium that currencies do not "move thru". It is the only Money that cannot be valued by currencies. It is gold that denominates currency. It is to say "gold moves thru paper currencies"."

Since "price" is objective, there is no directionality implied. It is simply the present rate of exchange, and one could mistakenly believe that each side needs the other side of the exchange equally. But "value", used as a verb, implies an important directionality that one thing is valued by the holders of another thing. This doesn't go both ways in extremis. MSFT stock needs currency holders bidding for it for its own survival, but real gold doesn't because it's bigger, badder and older than any currency.


Lisa said...


See Matrix Sentry's comment in FOFCON Open Forum at 10:11 AM on Feb 1, for his experience with holding gold in an IRA LLC

Michael dV said...

Many are aware of the site but to most casual readers we really are cultists.
It requires a good bit of reading to understand the foundations of freehold.
Just to hear some kooks say gold is going to the moon does not move many people. They have heard stocks pushed as 'going to be a real 10 bagger' for years. Why should they dig deeper? Why misallocate all those hours? Why join the cult? Why did you?
We obviously saw something here that kept us around. I assure you that is an unusual thing. I bet somewhere some miner is doing what you suggest. It is surprising who falls into the clutches of the evil cultists.


Thanks Lisa

Matrix, do you mind me asking how you went about setting up your IRA LLC? I am interested.

Nickelsaver said...

All this talk about these here parts being likened to a cult, I find somewhat amusing.

For me, and I have alluded to it before, we are more like AA (alcoholics anonymous). For one thing, I don't see a whole lotta preachin going on. But I do see lots of discussion. I see a lot of experienced folk sharing there own stories, relating their own travels down the trail.

And if any of you have ever had the priviledge of attending an AA meeting (like I have), the similairity should not be lost on you.

There is a saying in AA, "You go to church to save your soul, and AA to save your ass"

Perhaps as it relates to this here place, the latter part of that could be altered, "and GOLD to save your assets"

Cheers, Greets, and keep coming back, it works if you can hold it (gold that is)

Sam said...

byiamBYoung, I doubt this will be a thump but I will share my thoughts with you on your question. I was once in a coin shop when someone asked the same question of the dealer/owner. I don't believe that either the inquisitive customer or the owner was a "freegolder" but they did both believe that gold was going to the moon at any moment. The coin dealer explained that he must make an income. Although he deals in the very asset he wishes to accumulate, he will gladly sell it at a premium, pay his bills, and keep the excess profit to acquire even more gold.

Mining is work done to earn a profit. Perhaps if there was ever a legitimate physical shortage they might attempt to horde some supply. Until then mining companies can buy physical on the free market whenever they want just like the rest of us.

Anonymous said...


Thinking about mining companies. [...] wouldn't they be at least showing signs of stuffing supply under the rug?

Their owners/managers with their private money, yes, perhaps (thinking of Sinclair and why he chose this royalty business in Africa), but I doubt the companies will. There's simply no point. They run a regulated business, operating with a mining license issued by local or federal government.

When day X has arrived, they'll receive a fax at 8am, and then at 8.15am there's some police on the yard: nothing in; nothing out, sorry chaps, we just changed the rules. The company would never be able to record the profit for the selling of their secret stash - to whom? - black market? - all the financial reporting and so on - it would be straight fraud and put management at risk. Whereas, if some managers have a safety deposit box somewhere for their private gold, that would work as it does for anyone else.

The other thing is that all companies, and this includes the ETFs, will have to follow the law. So if some government does something stupid and confiscates gold, say, they will respect that law/decree and lose their gold, even if this law is revoked three months later. With your private safety deposit box, perhaps overseas, you have a lot more discretion. The company doesn't because they cannot book the profit unless they followed the law/decree/other regulation.


Michael dV said...

For all
I do not consider this joint a cult headquarters. Like (I bet) everyone here I see the analogies to cults but no cultist has ever felt so free to leave as we are here. I have made the 'high preist', the prophet and the other analogies. They are roughly correct but the bottom line is that we are a pretty lousy cult. We have kinda doctrine but no real enforcement and we completely lack prostelitizing (sp?).
For a cult leader fofoa lacks any real command/control structure. He has also failed to attract a core of trust funders to support the elite of the cult.
I have seen some of the inner workings of cults and we ain't even close.
Sorry folks, we are all on our own. We each have to decide how to deal with the limited facts we get and decide how to deal with them on our own. At best fofoa is like, I don't a trail guide.

Winters said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Woland said...

Michael dV;

Perhaps we should consider employing some "squirrel busters",
like a more famous, star studded cult? That was quite a story!

Unknown said...

Don't drink the kool-aid.

Jeff said...

a nickel for your thoughts

Michael H said...

Tommy2Tone said...

Just because:

FOFOA said...
Here is a comment I wrote a year ago, June of '09. It is under the post The Triumvirate of Wealth. It describes Freegold pretty succinctly:


Fractional reserve in and of itself is not such a terrible thing. The problem is that it creates a moral hazard. This moral hazard is such that even regulation cannot fix it because ultimately the regulators become morally corrupted by the system.

The shift that is coming in the gold market, from paper to a physical market, is the ultimate conclusion to a fractional reserve system. It is the collapse of the system as confidence is ultimately lost that there is any reserve actually being held in your name.

If we only use fiat currency as a unit for trade, and not for store of value, but instead have a non-fractional wealth reserve riding shotgun, the system will once again become sustainable.

The currency will fluctuate per the actions of the printer, but if he prints too much, more value will flow into the wealth reserve. If the printer is responsible, people will gradually be willing to hold the fiat for longer and longer periods of time. Ultimately, if the printer remains responsible, some people may hold the fiat as a store of value. But then this will tempt the printer to print more and value will flow back into gold.

This is where evolution is taking us. It is not taking us back, it is taking us forward. We are evolving to a place where governments print the money we use for trade, but not for savings. They will have to earn our trust again before we will save in their currency.

June 3, 2010 at 4:41 PM

Unknown said...

Yes, beautifully stated, I have always loved that post.

And I do believe that if the Euro grows much stronger, the Chinese Military could be invited to stand a gushing desert in the not too distant future.

Unknown said...

I remember (b4 the Internet) a mystical book sold on TV cakked THE MONEY SECRETS (or something). It told of an unbelievable secret called "fractional reserve banking". I think the book sold a few copies but basically got tossed to the dustbin of kook manuals.

Even today, there are working class people who have never heard of fractional reserve banking, and to explain it to them is to receive mildy incredulous stares of conspiracy quackiness.

Try telling those people about paper gold ...

Unknown said...

cakked ?! should be "called" (but you knew that).

byiamBYoung said...

Michael dV / Sam / Victor,

Thanks for answering. Three very lucid responses from three different angles.

Sam, I have had a similar thought while watching the gold coin sellers on Ebay. How many of them understand the Freegold concept? Hard to say. But for them to change course and discontinue their auctions, they would need to effectively cease their business operations. A hard sell, I think.

Victor, I guess you get the "thump" award. It hadn't dawned on me that secreting gold away could be tantamount to outright fraud. Even in a chaotic transition, we will all need to play within the rules...or face prosecution. A good point, to be sure.

Michael dV, your comments dovetail nicely with Wil Martindale's recent offering:

"Even today, there are working class people who have never heard of fractional reserve banking, and to explain it to them is to receive mildy incredulous stares of conspiracy quackiness.

Try telling those people about paper gold ..."

I guess it ends where it began. Why don't the miners "get it" and hoard their product?

Many don't understand deeply enough to take that step, and many who do understand are loathe to step over the criminal boundaries. Others see any action that diminishes their ongoing business as untenable. And some, despite all those reasons, are doing precisely that.

Thank you all.


KnallGold said...

-N-TV the other day, insurance seller: "..blahblahblah, our service, we just made a dictionary to translate the 30 page laywers small print blah blah... only we can buy state bonds... there's no alternative to our financial products":

Finance journalist's response: "hmm, for example, Gold..."

KG: looks like the people in Germany have figured it out now. And it also appears to me that the (meritocratic) phoenix is rising from the ashes, still in "statu nascendi" :-)

-On a less bright note, there are death threats against Merkel and the Bundestag from islamists and the SPD wants to what, weaken the German Gov.?? That rather obvious Schavan attack is just Another cheap campaign coming out from the bankrupt NRW socialist swamp around Borjans, Düsseldorf, Thielemann, Bleckmann, Wermuth, Roth and cohorts who already finished the tax deal between Switzerland and Germany. Google those buttheads (pardon) and you'll know. Shame on you!

-Hard to get real Gold prices for physical these days, looks like an increasing destabilisation in the market, spreads appear to widen as well.

-Good job in Mali so far!

-Thumbs up for MSM here around the area of Basel, Zürich and Aargau!

Best Regards,

Sam said...

just read an interesting post by Gonzalo Lira. He has recognized that gold is acting like Credit default swaps did right before they collapsed. CDSs were insurance against the collapse in 2008 and gold is in many people's mind insurance against global currency collapse. So why hasn't gold continued to go up in value amongst such obvious global currency debasement. The same reason CDSs stopped going up in value amongst obvious economic problems right before the crash. Investors rightfully questioned the ability of companies like AIG to actually pay up on all this insurance. Gold investors are finally starting to question the counter party risk of gold. Counter party risk in gold??? Make that counter party risk in paper gold.

Unknown said...

I like the analogy that Microsoft in its early days would only push MS stock to the public instead of it's product. Could you imagine how successful that would be over the years if no one owned the Windows product (but maybe a few elites?) ... and yet everyone was being told to buy the stock for it's guaranteed appreciation?

Likewise, as FOA has said, why don't mines sell product directly to the public and still do business this way after the transition?

The companies that will survive must make their product into registered form. Then sell only to users that will certify and prove that gold's end use as jewelry, coin or private bar. Registered bar sales must be stored in bonded warehouses that can identify a mine's product bar. If the paper industry or fabrication process is to use this gold they must remelt it, absorb the cost and pay a fee to the mine of that numbered bar.

Very few mines will make this shift. But it's the only way they will profit enough to overcome the taxes and regulation that's coming.

Ferdie Lips also had an opinion here (in Gold Wars).

I say to you that physical gold HAS continued to go up in value in light of continued currency debasement. NATO will take down an entire sovereign if it poses a threat to the (oil flow) system with it's DINAR. How's THAT for systemicvalue? But paper gold ? ... no, it's more surprising to have stabilized in the current range. To keep it there, politically of course, I feel certain that the paper contract mix to physical has breached 200:1. I'm sure that someone can do the calculation "the old way" to see how much paper must be sold to tread water with the physical buying. ALL PAPER is going DOWN, to ZERO minus DIRT, including, and perhaps primarily, paper gold.

Unknown said...

A shadow of relative weakness (in exchange rate terms) but STRONG in gold.

Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Fellow strugglers,

I must share an amazing discovery I made today. Using a text-to-speech app to listen to - instead of reading - the Freegold Foundations post, a true "Aha Moment" arrived. It took about eight times longer of course, but I can report an unaccustomed sense of having "got it". I still do not agree with all of it, but at least I can identify the points of departure more clearly. And they are definitely fewer.

Clearly no-one else who comments on this blog has such a tiny brain as I, but for my diminutive ganglion, forcing it slowly through a narrow tube worked very well. The prose is so dense that it is in any case not boring at that slow speed.


DP said...

FOA: I (we) expect none of you to consider anything said here as credible. Everything is given as I understand it. If you came with a notion that I am someone who sees the future; grab the children and run far away. For these Thoughts, and my ongoing commentary, are meant to impact exactly as the "gentleman" said they would. People hear them, and whether believed or not, the words leave a mark. A mental mark on the trail, if you will. And later, after the world turns, our little "stacks of rocks" will be easier to understand next time you are passing this way. In fact, your ability to find your own way will forever be enhanced for having seen this path in a different light.

One Bad Adder said...

It wasn't until after I'd gone "all-in" (c'98) that I stumbled upon A/FoA ....and their input served mainly as an on-going thought-process REINFORCEMENT for decisions already taken.
Curiously tho as time has worn on, my own thinking re: Gold has moved on into a more meta-physical plane.

Tommy2Tone said...

Tiny brain?
If you say so, but please, let's leave your ganglion size out of this discussion.
We are a civilized bunch of evil gold hoarders, jerks, time misallocators and brainwashed cult members.


TOTP- I haven't forgotten :):

December 12, 2012 12:43 PM

That made me smile. If that happens, I promise that I will do so. It will be my penance.

Pat said...

I not only find Another/FOA/FOFOA credible, but most of the comments participants as well; no fight club this. I think the way dissenters are allowed to engage in poking and probing, even as they become to a certain allowable degree disrespectful, says a lot about the quality of thought and willingness to have the "credibility" tested, time and again.
I am in the "All Inn". The dialogue found here helps in times of self uncertainty, which I find to be increasing. However, I find no other alternative to the All Inn so que sera in any event.
Here is my problem. I think there is an ever-increasing chance the black swans no one could imagine, Another/FOA/FOFOA or anyone else, could be significant enough to wash out even the plans of Giants. But I know the solution as well. I have no control over any of the macro events of our world, only my own microcosm. Prepare for the worst, hope for the best, live your life.
A good part of hoping for the best for me is hoping the Trail as laid out here before us comes to pass.

Michael dV said...

at worst all paper burns and we have the underlying 'stuff' left. Among the stuff will be gold, you have some. The 'restart' could be a real problem and there could be a significant gap between a crash and a society that functions enough to deliver groceries and Porches. We could emerge in a different type of society, one in which capital plays a different role.
One vision I have been exploring is the permaculture thingy. Small horticultural groups, using very little oil and providing adequate food could emerge. These require and demand less top down governance and there is the potential to be more isolated. Anyway I'm liking what I'm learning.
In that kind of world one could lie without the need for gold. I do expect however that we will evolve rather that devolve (as our host has stated). Even if there are big horrible changes I suspect we will stay connected via the internet and eventually travel will re-emerge and will burn some oil for these extravagances. If that happens we will all be good.
I have no idea if we get to Mad Max and Barter Town or if the top secret government is already working on a new improved currency and has a plan to keep us all fed and paid through the coming transition.
I just know that based upon 3 years of reading I'm doing what I should be doing and most of that action has been guided by fofoa and friends.

Motley Fool said...


Everyone makes the journey at their own speed. Stick around, and you may yet have time for penance, which from my personal experience will be harsh. xD


TontoD said...

@Börjesson on employees keeping schtumm

Not everyone within an institution knows all the institution's secrets. Does a janitor for Lockheed Martin have access to the details top secret projects? Most of their lowly workers spend all their time gathering data and crunching numbers. Only those at the high level -- an inner circle, if you will -- are in the know. Go ask the teller from your bank to explain fractional reserve banking, and he might not even have a clue.

Re-quote from Think like a Giant (email b/w Aquilus and FOFOA):
[Marginal utility is a] necessary effect of thinking like a giant, instead of understanding marginal utility leading to understanding how giants think!

Even if many CBs around the world weren't in on the conspiracy, they are forced to think alike as a consequence of being a giant.

Imagine you're a world class chess player playing against Kasparov. You know where all your peices are. There are only a finite number of moves. He's on the attack, and you have to react.

enough said...

Trying to find a "leg" to stand on........

moments ago, the CME once again cut margins in a slew of products, most notably gold and silver, by some 10% and 14%.


Anything to draw from gold being range bound for so long, even with all the new QE around the world in the last 2 years?

Anonymous said...


a true "Aha Moment" arrived. It took about eight times longer of course, but I can report an unaccustomed sense of having "got it".

Ah, so you admit all your prior verbose, rambling critiques of freegold were made despite a total lack of understanding (on your part) of the subject matter you were attempting to rebut.

Of course that was already obvious to almost everyone here but it is good to see you admit it! :-D

Kieran O B said...

"In working on this project, I was personally shocked when I discovered that we absolutely NEEDED paper currency in order to set Gold free. In the perfect world you lapse into in your comments, everything you say is well and good. We don't live in that world, however. My biggest challenge in piecing together my proffered solution was to accept what this real world had to offer and avoid foisting my own preferences onto the world like a square peg in a round hole."


Unknown said...

The coming role of gold in the IMF$ is as assured (IMO) as the "rising of the (red) sun." It is the realm of fiat (i,e, the paper currency we NEED to set gold free) that still appears foggy. The recent strength of the Euro and the (non-political) actions of the ECB do suggest a "happy ending" for some. But whether or not we "love Euro long time" remains to be seen.

Why is paper gold range bound lately? Yes Luke ... because of all the recent QE. When you "ease" the paper, you "ease" it all, paper gold and paper dollars.

"At first (paper) gold and the dollar rise together."

Simply understand that when Another spoke of a "rising price" of gold, he always meant paper gold, as real gold's "price" or value never changes. It is as solid and assured as the setting (blood red) sun.

Anonymous said...


When bad things in life happen to you, I wonder you will think of that comment to TOTP, and realise that you are merely getting what you deserve for your mean spirit.

A chip from the old block though.

milamber said...

Thanks FOFOA.

I will work through your answer & see if I can “free my mind”. Where I find myself getting stuck (at present) is I have always thought that price determined (in a marketplace at least) the value of something.

More questions later if I can’t figure it out.


milamber said...


When you get a sec would you mind sharing what prompted the AHA moment from listening to Foundations?

Many thanks,


Dr. Octagon said...

From Reuters: The US trade deficit reached near 3-year lows, "boosted by sales of industrial supplies, including a $1.2 billion increase of non-monetary gold".

Trade deficit narrows sharply, points to stronger GDP

Anonymous said...

Returning to the question "Why do you find A/FOA credible?"

My preamble starts with the fact that everything posted on the Internet is an "ego trip". Whether it's some duffer trying to play the ukulele or talk seriously about finance it's all about ego. Many people are unaware so they will argue the point.
The biggest "ego-trippers" are the bloggers and the "commenters" (including myself) They have an urge to inform the World of their opinion. Nothing wrong with it but how do you tell if they are credible? OK so the technical blogs where someone tells you how to wallpaper the living room is credible if their advice works but the financial ones are a different kind of animal. My credibility Meter registers high when I read Jim Rogers because he writes and talks about finance and is a billionaire. So what's my answer to the question?
I find A/FOA compelling and reasonable and I'm a convert. A/FOA credible? I really would be more positive about this if I knew they had had stacks of Gold in their possession.
Anyone that writes about how to fly a plane, no matter how brilliantly, should be able to fly a plane or they are not credible in my book.
Anyone that writes or comments about Gold maybe intellectually sound but unless they have a reasonable stash of Gold are not truly credible.

On the other hand if the definition of "credible" is just "capable of being believed" then we all are credible here.

As My Fair Lady sings "don't talk of love… show me!!"

Pat said...

Duggo, that is so incredibly, sorry, dumb. Do you honestly think for a nano-second Another/FOA/FOFOA don't have gold as their primary SOV, they don't practice what they preach? Really? They just have all this time on their hands to explore this esoteric subject ( to most people ) and have no skin in the game?

Anonymous said...

Name calling people dumb just shows who the dumb person is. You didn't ask the question so why are you answering me?

I presumably was asked a question by FOFOA not you or anyone else. He can speak for himself.

I don't care if name-callers like you find my answer not to your liking.

Indenture said...

TOTP: I have enjoyed your writing style from day one and had hoped you would stick around. I personally don't ever remember the word 'ganglia' being used in the comments and you toss it into a self deprecating description. I find grand egotistical flamboyance dripping from your prose, and I like it. That is why your 'Ah-Ha' moment might be considered, oh, sweet. I am also curious as to what passage of thought helped you.

duggo: I'm running with the thought of 'ego' as the cause of posting and somewhere in the cult hive mind there must be a similar characteristic that we all possess.

Jeff said...

Giants don't hold for the revaluation so even if you are following in their footsteps you might not achieve the same outcome. I find value in understanding a different view I would not have otherwise had, whether I live to see freegold or not. Some of us hike the trail for pleasure.

FOFOA: The whole point of the [hyperinflation] debate is about the denouement, the final outcome of this 100-year dollar experiment. It is about the ultimate end, and the debate has been going on ever since the 70s when the dollar was separated from gold and it became clear that there would be an end. The debate is about determining the best stance someone should take who has plenty of net worth. And I do mean PLENTY. People of modest net worth, like me, can of course participate in the debate. But then it can become confusing at times when we think about shortages or supply disruptions of necessities like food. Of course you need to look out for life's necessities first and foremost. But beyond that, there is real value to be gained by truly understanding this debate.

FOA: We, and I, as physical gold advocates, don't need timing for this position! Timing is for poor, paper traders. We are neither and our solid, long term, one call over several years to hold physical gold will confirm our reasoning. There is no stress for me to own this ancient asset as it is in a good proportion to all my other wealth.

Archer said...

From duggo,

"My credibility Meter registers high when I read Jim Rogers because he writes and talks about finance and is a billionaire."

Interesting. And what of the far wealthier Warren Buffet?

Anonymous said...

I feel Jim Rogers is likeable and independent.

I feel Warren Buffet has something of the "dark-side" going on. Warren Buffett appears to be the ultimate "insider".

These are only feelings. My "voice" is telling me. I don't always listen to my "voice". "No you bloody well don't duggo and that's why you upset people."

Pat said...

Duggo, I didn't say you were dumb, I said your comment was, big difference. I say dumb stuff, and I don't mind being called out on it when I do.

Nickelsaver said...


If price and value were the same, it would make little sense to say that anything was "a good value".

Anonymous said...

So you have intimate knowledge of A/FOA and their financial standing including their Gold.
Do tell me about it. Or is it just a guess without facts?
Or is this just being dumb again?
I presume FOFOA must have "some skin in the game" as you quaintly put it. The "voice"has just cheekily asked why if he's so stacked with Gold he needs a donation button.

TontoD said...


> if he's so stacked with Gold he needs a donation button
Explained here:

It seems to me that you give much more stock to one's credibility than their message. Therefore you can never find a couple of anonymous posters credible.

burningfiat said...


Since you first came here, you have seemed to be more interested in the player than the ball...
Sorry to say, it is just not the way it works here. Please respect that.
This is a place where arguments from poor and wealthy are both considered with the same rigour.
When considering the credibility of posters I would rate these categories as important:
1) Is the argument logically consistent?
2) Is the argument in agreement with current facts on the ground?
3) Does the argument have explaining power regarding historical events?
4) To some degree: Does the poster have a history of presenting good arguments?

This kind of discernment requires that the reader gets involved in the thinking process. You, as the reader are required to use your logical sense and prior knowledge in this process.
Here, it is just unfortunately not enough to look at stack-size or financial standing of the poster when judging the quality of an argument.
So I humbly suggest you begin to get in the game and start going after the ball instead of the players...


Aquilus said...

US Dec export report:

US Non-monetary gold exports Dec: $4.019 Bill, Nov: $2.829 Bill Increase: $1.190 Bill

At paper prices , $4B is about 73 Tons.

Aquilus said...

Quick add-on to above: There is non-monetary gold imported (Dec:$1.586B Nov: $1.914B) so net is Dec $2.433B and Nov $0.915B).

In paper gold prices: that's about 44T net export for Dec, and 17T for Nov with a 335T net export for 2012 (again: at paper gold prices).

US mined 230T in 2012.

So do we have more physical sold in spot with future contracts bought, outright private selling or wrong price? Or something different?


Archer said...

Duggo asked (rhetorically?)

The "voice"has just cheekily asked why if he's so stacked with Gold he needs a donation button.

Because, even though some people treat gold the same way they would a stock, bond, or some other speculative and/or investment vehicle, cashing in and out of it when they make a respectable nominal profit, gold's best use is as a store of wealth that one doesn't tamper with except on rare occasions.

Nickelsaver said...

'The "voice"has just cheekily asked why if he's so stacked with Gold he needs a donation button.'

The fact that anyone would acquire as savings, physical gold in any significant qty, could only come as a result of being a net producer.

And if such a person, at any given point should become a net consumer, given the choice to abandon his/her net production in favor of pursuits which offer a different type of return. That person would be faced with the choice to consume his/her saved production, abandon the latter pursuit, or rely on some other means to make up for the loss of production (ie the donate button).

So in the end, Mr. Doggo, each reader hear must decide what value they place on that latter pursuit, as it relates to they're own enrichment.

Pat said...

Duggo, I think I get it, you can't attack the message, so attack the messengers. I take it back, you are not dumb you're duplicitous.

Pat said...

Yes, FOFOA and anyone else, why on earth would you need gold ( a SOV ), and income as well? Duggo brain hurt.

Victory said...


73 tones aye...hmmm....that's a lot! 876 tones annualized.

On the bright side if you're an American citizen importing gold (from your coin dealer hehe), that's higher the treasury gold will ultimately need be revalued to find equilibrium.

Got Debt? (to repay in dollars?!) American Eagle gets your college tuition paid off?!...anyone...anyone?

...selling houses on the corner, 2 FOR 5!!!


Anonymous said...

Ha! Ha! What a hornets nest of fanatical followers.

Rather reminds me of the followers of Allah. Every time someone questions their fragile beliefs they think is an attack against Allah and they must defend him even though they cannot see the stupidity of their actions. If Allah is all powerful he doesn't need their assistance. If he is all powerful he can right his own wrongs.
Once again I say to all of you. I was asked a question by FOFOA I do not need your answers. That's why I normally only read what FOFOA says. I find it reasonable. I find most of the comments tedious and self serving.

I think Eric Hoffer was right about the masses.

Aquilus said...

Time to go "Trollin' with FOA" (from Jan 2001 this time):

But then, I never realized that there were so many nuts in the world. Like that one
that stomped Another at Kitco, endlessly. I thought they were few and far between.
Then several of them even started in on me over here. I don't know, but it seems
they all went to the same school,,,, or they are all the same person? Their line of
reasoning always starts out as a regular discussion, then degrades into some
personal attack. Again, always the same thought process saying: "you people are all
being mind controlled if you discuss any of this with them". I have to ask you all ,,,,,
What the hell is that anyway?,,,,,, what are they getting at?????

Motley Fool said...


You mentioned earlier that the matter of ego has decisive influence online, and I tend to agree.

I am curious if the last few comments is to be taken as example of trying to save face?

It does seem to be consistent with my experience of such situations to go on the attack instead of contemplating admitting to even the slightest mistake.

Or perhaps you want to expand on where in your reading of FOA and Another you got the idea that they had no gold, and were simply spinning a story to idk entertain others and stroke their own ego's?


Anonymous said...

At about $16000/ounce, the U.S. trade account would be balanced.


Anonymous said...

Apologies, it's $26000/ounce.

Nickelsaver said...


Thank you for confirming that your 2.3 millisecond transformation from hero worshipping BrotherJohnF silverbug, to gungho freegolder was just a farce.

Welcome to troll land. Oh, and would you please just STFU.

Thank you very much.

Unknown said...

That's interesting. There was a calculation a while back that went something like 55K to settle all outstanding US debt, but I think that's more opaque when one considers derivatives.
I've been thinking lately that this currency war is really a CONfidence war. The longer freegold is delayed, the more I sense the pressure that some do lose confidence in gold, leaving it nowhere to go but back to fiat.
I even wonder what it takes to shake the resolve of a giant.
But then I think that they have generations of wisdom to draw from, plus the prescious gift of patience.
Truly what a giant has gained apart from us shrimp is the freedom of time.

Herb said...

To answer FOFOA's question, the late Mayor Ed Koch said something along the lines of "if you agree with 7 out of 10 things I say then vote for me. If you agree with 10 out of 10 things I say then see a psychiatrist."

I don't think it is necessary for me to subscribe to the entire depiction of the gold/oil relationship and the like to, as others have said, find a "ring of truth" in what A/FOA had to say. So I have decided to "vote" for them (and FOFOA).

Pete T said...

FOA is alive and well. I don't believe he will ever reveal his identity, i suspect more than anything out of a sense of personal morality that to so do might risk exposing Another. I'm glad he doesn't reveal his identity, for it would inevitably dilute his message. One needs only read a few of the comments here (sth I generally avoid) to have a pretty good idea of the reception any identity disclosure would attract: personalty analysis, criticism of his historical and current biz practices, derision, bigotry, character assassination- all the standard judgements humans make when they congregate.
Keep his wisdom, keep his message pure. Its value is too meaningful to allow other considerations to muddy its waters.

MatrixSentry said...

Thank you Pete T.

byiamBYoung said...

Pete T,

ORLY? Wow! How did you come by this bombshell?

[one eyebrow raised]



OK now why do you find Pete T credible?

byiamBYoung said...

I find Luke credible!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

Ooops, wrong link, but ... don't give in to the dark side Luke,



byiamBYoung said...


Maybe Luke isn't credible.

byiamBYoung said...

Credible...maybe not

costata said...

One of the things about Another's writings that encouraged me to think he was credible is the lack of interest he displays in whether people believe him or not. As I came to a better understanding of A/FOA's thinking I saw a logical and coherent explanation in their writings of the events and policies that led to the present state of affairs.

Last and by no means least over the years we have discovered a lot of material that corroborates their claims.

Aquilus said...

More Trollin' with FOA

From (January 11,2001 Msg#54): this time some crazy ideas about our human nature in doing the half of a process that suits our needs, ignoring the rest, and then labeling any failure a failure of the entire process. That and some crazy talk about no current price for gold as a physical only market denominates the total world wealth and economic activity. Minor edits for spelling and legibility (in [brackets])

Someone very smart once E-mailed me that "you must somehow impress upon them that the Euro is but a means to an end, not the end in itself".

Most hard money players have expected for some time, that gold will rise in dollars as the dollar falls against other currencies. To date; the dollar has begun to exhibit it's initial fall in exchange rates, but gold has not risen. Don't worry, because it won't rise until a further reduction in dollar "use" has become the trend. Presently, under current international currency structure, the dollar could fall considerably and even ignite slight local price inflation,,,, and gold still would not rise. This goes against the grain of your 70s style money history teachings, correct? I knew so.

You see,,, "this market is not as before". I heard that somewhere years ago? But, it's true. Only a reduction in "dollar use", worldwide, will fracture the current paper gold markets into discount against physical. Then, any further fall in our dollar's exchange value will trigger both major price inflation and a continued huge rise in physical gold prices. But why is it this way?

I'm glad you asked, because we are just rounding the curve. Make room for everyone,watch and listen as I describe this magnificent view! Oh my goodness, it is good!


Gold, it has no market price!

Some long time ago a group of us came to an understanding that would eventually shake the financial gold world. It seemed that, then, for over twenty years physical gold could be had without the currency markets placing a correct price on it. This made fertile ground for all the special gold dealings that took place over the next decade or so.


Aquilus said...

Background and foreground for reference:

Lord Keynes:

was and is always thought of as the father of modern currency inflation. Whenever prices rose, it was because the treasury was following poor old Keynes thoughts on official money policy. But, in truth, we only accepted and acted on half his directives, then proceeded to label our half use of his stuff as "his socialist process". In truth, he promoted that we expand fiat during times of trouble, then contract during times of less trouble. In the end the world slanted toward a non gold fiat money expansion only and reaped the result.

----Us humans acted on the part that suited our drives while placing the failure of our actions on the whole of Lord Keynes's thoughts-------

California Electric:

is a big problem today[Aq: 2001]. But, once again we use only half a process and label it as whole. We created a somewhat fractured deregulation of that state's electric system but called it a full deregulation. Just like Keynes above, humans used what part of the process we liked and when it failed, called it a "whole failure" of deregulation.

------ this is the natural way we perceive our social and legal interaction, "and we been doing it a longggg time"------

1970s dollars:

Before the USA took the dollar off of gold, many dollar proponents openly stated that gold would tumble if it had no dollars behind it. Again, the Western mind had conditioned itself to knowing and embracing only half the concept. Again, it seems that we have a way of acknowledging the half of a concept that produces the most liberal response for us while ignoring the half that promotes the most long term good.

We didn't just conveniently forget the truths of what money was, rather we abandoned the knowledge that our dollars were a warehouse receipt for gold. Gold being a real economic good that, for centuries circulated as money, but now, was suddenly reversed and seen as a receipt for dollars? Something of a major reverse, no?

Indeed, we accepted that dollars were more of a warehouse receipt for "goods exchanged in our economy". Once again we expected everyone to accept "this half" of the process. The half that benefited us the most. Yet, if it failed to work, it was the whole gold process that failed.

----- This, my friends is the legend of gold use in our modern society. Like so much of our flawed thinking, we embrace what is trendy for our personal singular perception while rejecting what is best for the whole.-----


Aquilus said...

BIS's paper gold:

While extolling all the virtues of gold in an official money system, we ourselves shun the non leverage of physical gold. Indeed, we buy,,, among various gold deeds,,,,, paper gold in the form of BIS shares. Once again we blame the official system because this paper receipt finds it's value defaulted on.

Prior, we proclaim to anyone that will listen that a share receipt of "X" amount of retained gold value is a good deal because we can buy it for 1/2X [Aq: leverage]. X being the the physical gold price. Then, when the humans on the other side of that transaction try to do to us what we were trying to do to them, that is gain the full thrust of gold value we purchased for 1/2 full thrust, and we lose our gain ,,,,,,,, something is wrong with the gold market.

This is but one more fine example of paper gold, like pre 70s dollars, not being able to perform it's perceived function of marching to physical gold's value. Again, as in all above, we as an economic society try to reduce these instruments into non organic concept of receipts that carry no flavor of human function in their distant performance.

----- We bought gold, but if the paper gold market fails to perform to our expectations,,,, then the whole gold market,,,, including physical gold is considered not right for our ownership. We invest in half the process but expect the whole process to work.----------


Aquilus said...

The Grand view:

Whether we as hard money people knew it or not, our society, governments and yes, even cabals,,,,, all influenced the structure of modern gold markets and did it in a way so that no one could know or trade on the true worth of gold.

Because gold became entwined in modern fiat money function, it suffered all the same effects fiat received from the expansion of banking in our economy. In that arena gold could not help but be paperized and even labeled "the physical gold market".

In truth, anyone understanding this dynamic early on, would see that over time a real currency price for gold would disappear. As we embraced this banking component of the whole gold picture, true to the various examples above, we discarded the need to know what physical gold "alone" would buy. Physical gold was no longer needed as a "receipt for commerce", like our modern dollar. Therefore, it's value in the economy would be degenerated toward our perception of it's commodity value. As long as the banking price, that is the paper price, stayed within this jewelry commodity range, we accepted it as the real price of physical gold.

Indeed, once again, we were destined to experience the gut wrenching results of using half a concept until the whole concept failed. We are at that point today, with gold.

The result of all this was to allow physical gold accumulators (physical gold advocates) to buy gold at an unknown constant discount to it's real wealth value. No matter what the paper trading derivatives would say over the years, any gold delivered through the 90s could be counted on to contain a massive, colossal, value above any past attained paper price.

----Truly, as we talk, there is no known market price for physical gold! A market price for physical gold does not exist!---------

As Another tried to explain and I tried to refine,,,,, gold has historically represented it value as a function of the total world wealth and economic activity. Over time, our known gold supply has grown by leaps and bounds, but our economic structure and goods creation ability has literally exploded a thousand times that gold creation.

Aquilus said...

In doing so our wealth relationship with gold has seen it's ratio degraded to a tiny fraction of where it would be in a physical only market. Paper gold and the examples above of the human dynamic, have played an incredible roll in creating a mismatch of wealth value unknown in man's time.

I would guess that Michael Kosares, the owner of this gold site [Aq: USAGold, 2001], has traded tonnes of gold over his lifetime. Yet, from the time of his start he has never sold gold coins for their physical worth. Truly, he has only sold them for the supply and demand market price of paper gold banking.

Further, as Mr. Paul Eaden's (spelling?) research piece in USAGOLD's opinion site shows, the derivatives market makes the price of gold. Using his view to look over the Gold Trail, we can see that paper dervatives can not reflect the "value" of gold that Another said was comming.

It is from here that we can understand the awesome leverage contained in holding but one ounce of gold. Here, on this ledge overlooking the entire golden valley, we can see this truth! Yet, it is a revelation to gold buyers as much as a curse on gold industry and leveraged paper investors. They spend their days, consuming their wealth, betting on a price that cannot represent gold until it fails. Destroying all they wait for.

From here, we understand why the current prices for gold do not have any bearing on the buying habits of the major players that walk this trail. As Another has said "The price you know, it be your price, not my price".

It is true, we are buying gold, not to trade for a paper value created today. Rather, to hold it beyond the paper destruction that must come tomorrow. Gamblers, traders and gold substitute players will all witness a colossal shift in world wealth that degrades their holdings. Even as their bet on half the process [that] is proven as a folly very typical in human nature. Only unseeable as it exists.

MatrixSentry said...


Thank you sir for tonight's episode of Trollin' with FOA!

Aquilus said...


You're welcome. It's all in the spirit of this quote from the first letter above:

"His intent was marketing the USAGold forum when he was on Kitco. He was trolling Kitco [for readers] while MK was trolling for [other popular commenters like me and *****].

He sure attracted those who didn't know, yet wanted to know. But I don't think he was a teacher nor did he have a special message to tell.

Unknown said...

Those are excellent thoughts. I for one have always thought of Keyne's rationale as a bit of a parlor trick. You artificially create the "symptoms" of a healthy economy (lots of money in circulation) without addressing the true health of the economy (real world productivity, market demand, etc..) so of course when the artificial symptoms run out, there is no real causal connection to sustain them. Lather, rinse, repeat ...
This is not so different than the 2 halves analogy, as the crux of fiat lies in the same weakness. The fiat managers artificially produce the symptoms of wealth abundance (paper gold as one derivative example) but there is no true physical connection to sustain them ... however there is a psychological connection to sustain them. CONFIDENCE.
Think Geithner in 2008. There is nothing more precious to the managers of the dollar than CONFIDENCE, even confidence that emanates from fear. It is almost as if the war between fiat and gold is a war of confidence.

If fear and despair win out (the way of the dark side Luke) then CONFIDENCE in fiat could linger on, and the Sith Lords of Fiat will rule the day.

But if confidence in GOLD shines through, then the rebel alliance will save the day and the DEATH STAR of fiat will be destroyed.

Giants like A and FOA help shrimps like me sustain the confidence of their heritage. They have gained the freedom of TIME.

Shrimp on the other hand mostly scurry about in the world of fiat, fearful of debt, fearful of making payments on TIME, fearful that if anything disrupts this treadmill they are furiously puffing along ... time will catch up to them.

Not too different these analogies, just "another" perspective.

Unknown said...

Along these same lines, internationally, support for the dollar truly depends upon CONFIDENCE (and to some extent fear) that the dollar reserve system presents the best case scenario for maintaining order, stability, sustenance, etc... as we all know that is changing, but what is changing in essence is confidence in this system.
And I think we can all agree that hyperinfliation is likewise a psycholological event, sudden mass loss in confidence. As confidence is the essence of fiat (Another would call it debt - are they different? repayment is an asset, default a liability, what separates these as an event is a form of confidence).
As confidence dwindles "preferential use" of currency inures to the benefit of the currency that maintains confidence.
All roads do point to gold as the last bastion of confidence in a wealth reserve that is true, unencumbered, and ultimately preferred.
An event trigger or the long, slow slog awaits...

Tyrannyofthepresent said...


Since I carelessly neglected to furnish you with any details on my new points of understanding gleaned from "Freegold Foundations", your incorrect guesswork and extensive misconstruction are both quite understandable.

On the other hand, your ability to pen such an apposite response to my vacuous, verbose nonsense without reading it, and to divine the opinions and reading behaviour of other visitors without asking them, are both very impressive.

Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Milamber and Indenture,

Many thanks for your responses. I will try to summarise it briefly, which as you will have noticed is not my strong point.

I could only answer your question properly by writing an interleaved point-by-point response. I would not subject the patient denizens of this blog to what would probably run to ten thousand words of what many of you would consider to be bunk. I also would not plagiarise FOFOA's work in order to do the exercise on my own blog. I may do it for my own amusement and keep it for myself. I could respond to my own reworded version, but could then be accused of having misconstrued FOFOA, or of worse intellectual sins.

In brief, then.

As I am going through the posts more slowly, I now see FOFOA's Freegold theory (as distinct from the writings of Another and FOA) as a thing of beauty; a complex, multifaceted and self-consistent semantic framework. The semantic mesh is carefully constructed using a limited set of terms. Some of the definitions of those terms are novel, but they are all carefully and explicitly defined and the definitions are carefully defended. This allows the author to communicate the entire intellectual structure from his own mind to the mind of his readers, an experience which many of them find extremely satisfying, as stated here.

As you know, it contains both premises and conclusions that fall within the realms of ethics, philosophy, psychology, history and sociology.

It is almost invulnerable to challenge, for a number of reasons.

- Its semantic and logical structure is perfectly coherent, so it would be futile to attack it.
- Its definitions, while novel, are explicitly stated as premises and are insisted upon. This is despite the fact that they refer to real-world data which are otherwise defined by other thinkers. Practically, however, challenging the definitions is not accepted in this social context, while challenging them elsewhere is pointless since they are not used in that sense elsewhere (except when regular commenters from here comment on other blogs).
- Challenging its premises also fails, since the premises for each of the arguments are themselves conclusions from others. A challenger is therefore simply referred to the argument that establishes the premises, forced back to the premises of that argument, and so on. I have made no secret of the fact that I see one or two of these underlying premises are cultural in nature (e.g. the disdain for silver of a noble Arab) or have a psychological purpose detached from the real world (e.g. the expectation of a sudden change, which drives a sense of urgency).

In its complexity, self-consistency and invulnerability on the above grounds, I see it as akin to one of the great systems of theology, philosophy or economic theory. Debates between such self-consistent systems at their margins are generally fruitless, since the participants refuse to acknowledge each others' premises. The "suspension of disbelief" that Costata requested for his silver post is rarely achieved.

Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Milamber and Indenture,

Part 2,

This interests me because in my own mind I usually refuse to accept such premises, and in particular I generally refuse to accept novel definitions, since I know that the conclusions of any argument are essentially defined by the premises and definitions that are used.

Furthermore it seems to me (from the perspective of my vague, inductive process) that what I would choose to call "reality" is not captured by any one of the above-mentioned systems. It has its own defiant existence and its own inscrutable logic.

So where I see the Freegold theory conflicting with what I perceive as "reality" or - worse no doubt for readers here - see those conflicting elements as concordant with elements of other theories such as Ash's version of Marxism or the Turdville construct, I as an individual am seeking to allow that "reality" to be constructed in my own mind.

This cannot be done without premises or without definitions. That is the limitation of human thought. My preference, however, is to force both to remain fluid in my own mind. I must adopt Freegold premises and definitions to understand Freegold, Marxist premises and definitions to understand Ash and Turdish ones to understand most of my fellow bimetallists (with a few exceptions found on Screwtape). My premises and definitions are therefore fluid, and my semantic structure is not rigid or self-consistent. If I were seeking to set up a system or convince others this would be important; since I am simply seeking to adapt to the "reality" it is of no consequence.

Kieran O B said...

Never really brought up buying gold with my family until yesterday but it went surprisingly well. Convo with my sister(23) went something like this:

Me:Well if you have a decent amount of savings why not run down to the Perth mint and buy some gold with some of it?
[waiting curiously for sister's reaction]
Sister: How do you know about gold?
Me: Em I read a lot of economics and finance stuff.
Sister: Ohh, yeah my friend bought a coin from the Perth mint a few years ago and its almost doubled in price, and you know Elaine? well she bought a gold coin for her nephew back home for his christening. Lots of people are buying them for their kids. Do you think it will go up much in the next few years?
Me: I think it will do better than a bank account, why not take about 10% of your savings and buy some gold, you've got a safe haven't you?
Sister: Yeah I have. Yeah I think I will buy some.
Me: [Tried to explain spot price and premiums and lost her a little.]

Well that was easy.

Motley Fool said...


Well, then the point of attack is clear. One must show that the premises or definitions given are not descriptive of reality.

Have at it. :P


Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Motley Fool,

Why would I want to attack? That is my conundrum. As I said, it is a beautiful and self-consistent system, which furthermore accounts rather well for a number of elements of "reality" (which is also completely subjective, consisting as it does of my own accumulated experiences, reading and conclusions).

If you look carefully, I have never sought to "attack", but on occasion to push different premises into the mesh, since I think it would fit my "reality" better. I am content if no-one else agrees, although all responses are valuable as they provide qualitative feedback.

Milamber and Indenture,

I realise that I did not even address what probably interested you most - the specific points of FOFOA's discourse that brought about an "AHA".

In fairness it was more like a hundred or so points of "sharper definition" in my understanding of FOFOA's individual concepts and the relationships between them, which added up to one large "Aha" along the lines of "I now understand this entire edifice better (although still not perfectly)."

For this reason, my use of the phrase "points of departure" is misleading. I simply found that listening to FOFOA slowly I am grasping his system more fully than simply reading it. Grasping it is allowing me to identify more clearly the parts that are mostly concordant and those that are discordant with other systems (at present). This in turn allows me to adjust my opinions on the match between those aspects and "reality". I dropped the hope of actually adopting any one of the systems in its entirety long ago.

Motley Fool said...


Perhaps my phrasing is offensive to you, though it was not meant that way.

I think the mettle of any theory should be tested to the extreme, even if that test then breaks such theory (a most excellent result).

I have tried attacking FG, and failed. Perhaps you will succeed where I failed, and we will all be better off for it. I seriously doubt that of course, but am willing to give you the benefit of the doubt.

Other such systems such as Marxism should be similarly attacked to find weak spots I think. Here though it is fairly easy to show where they depart from (perceived reality).

While you are correct that all we may do is build models of reality, that does not mean that reality does not exist. My favourite suggestion to others who doubt that proposition is to go jump off a building and see if their disbelief saves them the fact of gravity. ^^


Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Motley Fool,

Your phrasing is never offensive; I disagreed with the substance, which you confirmed by reiterating it: the "test to destruction" approach. I am a linguist, not a builder and destroyer of philosophical theories.

As I have said, I have seen no point challenging the premises since each one is itself supported by a whole argument. Also I feel that a system is entitled to its own premises.

The same is not true of the definitions, and I remember fruitful discussions on a few of these already, particularly those that were most capable of concrete connection to the real world:


On just one of these:

I think you and I ultimately agreed that the "harder" money/wealth asset is the one that has the tendency to appreciate in relative terms over the given time period. One can (and does) then discuss which time period is relevant.

There is another definition of "hard money" as pertaining to a monetary metal which has some currency here: "gold, not silver or fiat". Since this is framed as an a priori, it is invulnerable to deconstruction (but also lacks persuasiveness, once it is exposed for what it is).

In other words, gently trying to adjust the definitions is the approach that I perhaps instinctively adopted from the start, since I have interacted with large, complex and self-consistent systems with articulate and well-read adherents many times before.

Motley Fool said...


I do not think that euphemism of action or intent changes substance, but am not motivated to argue the point.

You recall correctly, and I never mind fruitful discussion, not that I think our agreement there was more than clarification of a point, than challenge to the concepts here.



Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Motley Fool,

"The two classes are the Debtors and the Savers. "The easy money camp" and "the hard money camp"."

Try "suspending disbelief" and imagining a century in which silver is "harder" than gold.

Apply the results back to FOFOA's premise above (which I would also wish to qualify, but that is for another day).

One of the reasons I love this place is because it is one of the only places on the internet where one can truly escape from the "tyranny of the present". This blog is a social micro-environment in which some of what I can believe in as ideas, values and even mores that will probably be characteristic of the fairly near future are being adopted, defended, challenged and discussed by intelligent, articulate people with the kind of intensity and ease that they would have if the future were already present.

It would be utterly ridiculous to expect this future-in-the present to be perfectly accurate. If it contains more than a grain of credibility, however, it would also be negligent to fail to challenge its weaknesses and seek to make it more resilient to its inevitable encounter with reality. (Not "reality").

Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Motley Fool,

If you do find time to respond to the above, I will read it with great interest later or tomorrow but now unfortunately for me, but fortunately for Poopyjim and almost everyone else, I have run out of time. Thanks for a great discussion as always.

Motley Fool said...


That request stretches my imagination.

What is the purpose of your query..I fail to see where you are going with it.

It also leaves a lot out... was gold the harder money prior to that, will it be again after the century, is this century a mere abberration (not that I can see it being anything else, even when stretching my imagination)?

Each camp symbolizes a different mindset, and each has symbols in media that represent such though, and sure it is possible (if unlikely) that such symbols can change over time. Is this what you are looking at?

Sadly we cannot escape the tyranny of the present, even here, as he seems to comment almost every day. :P


Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Motley Fool,

I saw your response just before switching off. The purpose of my query was simply to demonstrate that if

1) hardness is defined as we thrashed out,
2) it occurs in the real world for a significant period of time (remember our discussion about the discovery of the Americas)
3) the concept of "hard money" as used by FOFOA continues to function

then silver may, in some places and in some minds, begin to arrogate back to itself the share of the hard money function which it had in the pre-1850 bimetallic past.

This represents one tiny nibble at the monometallic aspect of Freegold, but one of many.

Your last sentence was a gem, but I must admit I asked for it.

Anonymous said...

Dear Motley Fool

I have no interest in "saving face" here on the comments section of this blog. It's not that important a venue.

I didn't say that A/FOA or FOFOA have Gold or not. I don't know if they have or haven't.

Go back and read it again.

Motley Fool said...


"A/FOA credible? I really would be more positive about this if I knew they had had stacks of Gold in their possession."

I tend not to nitpick too much when people try and use linguistics to give themselves wriggle room, instead I go after their meanings ignoring their words.

So I ask again. Where in your reading of FOA and Another you got the idea that they had no gold, and were simply spinning a story to idk entertain others and stroke their own ego's? As this is your implication.

You say you would find them more credible if you knew that they had gold in their possesion. I wonder what type of verification one would need. Is their saying they own physical gold not enough? Would you need to inspect their actual bars or would photo's do? Does their depth of knowledge on the subject and their positions on the matter not indicate that this is more than a passing interest for them?

I do not understand what type of proof you are looking for, that is reasonable, that is not already given.


Motley Fool said...


I do not dispute that that is possible.


Should one consider each infinitesimal probability of what may happen in the real world as a blow against that which is most likely?

Certainly, I suppose, to be rational and consistent, though perhaps I would suggest one allocates such time to such topics as they deserve given their possibility. So in this case roughly the same odds as our being attacked by aliens today? (and hence about as much time considering such)

If you disagree with my assigned possibility you will need to explain what series of events would need to take place to bring that possibility to fruition.


Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Motley Fool,

Peeked in. Thank you. That progression from "inevitability" to "infinitesimal probability" is one I have encountered in discussions here and elsewhere before. It is an interesting phenomenon. That is not intended as an ad hominem, it is an honest observation.

I fully understand your point on matching the time allocated to it to the expected probability. Such an approach can be applied to any fixed view and will insulate it from challenge. This has been done throughout human history.

Your actual generosity in debating with me gives the lie to your point above and demonstrates the alternative view: it is important to keep an open mind, even on what appears a priori to be "impossible". I am grateful to you for this approach since I lack another forum for this specific debate (whether or not silver can be integrated into the Freegold idea by an open-minded thinker or in a real future). I did try it in Turdville but only lasted one post.

Now off again.

Motley Fool said...


Yes, there does reside a paradox here. One has to keep an open mind and allow time to consider all things, and only once you have done so is it possible to say whether it should have been done. Even then you may still be mistaken, whatever your conclusion.

My view is from that off the perfectly rational being, who is omniscient. Obviously he does not exist for us to interact with, and we can at best strive to be like him. Our allocations will this always be imperfect.

I simply matched yours, and pointed out after the fact that I do not see it as having been rational. ^^

The world of theory and the world of practice does not always coincide unfortunately.


Tyrannyofthepresent said...

Frustrated (or closet) silverbugs,

I have started a new blog at and am using it as a repository for my freegold-plus-silver posts. Some of them were responses to or dialogues with others; I have removed your own thoughts so as not to plagiarise.

This is partly intended to relieve this blog of the volume of silver-related material, which some people find excessive at times.

If you are interested in posting on "silver in Freegold" (Costata?) or have posted favourite thoughts yourself, or have "unanswered questions", please put them in a comments thread marked "post" and I will turn them into posts there. It is just a repository and hopefully a place for free discussion on that topic.

I hope nobody minds me doing this but I feel the need to create a truly free forum for it.

Mircea said...

Motley Fool and ToTp,

The point of attack is the basis of the actual system. Which is, you must admit it, COMPETITION in accumulation of wealth. FIAT, FreeGold or however you want to name the system in which is realized the accumulation of what is perceived as wealth, they are utterly flawed if they are based on COMPETITION.

Try to think of FreeGold in a COOPERATIVE society.Can you?

Motley Fool said...


I honestly have no idea what you are trying to say...and I am scared to ask. xD

But ok... so competition is bad? and cooperation is good? and err.. what exactly does cooperation mean?


byiamBYoung said...


By COOPERATIVE society, are you referring to a FAIRER society? Maybe a society the redistributes wealth?

If so, no thanks.

But it wouldn't seem to make much difference, anyway, with regard to freegold. Regardless of the structure of society, there will always be some who have wealth and some who do not.


Anonymous said...

I find A/FOA credible because of his description of the powerful forces at work behind what seems on the surface to be an impossible situation at present (i.e. paper for oil).

Freegold is an elegant solution to the worldwide theft of net producers and unfair trade manipulation on the part of ‘all’ nations. My hope is that the TPTB will have no choice but to eventually establish gold at significantly elevated prices as the primary way of settling account balances and as a result ‘also’ establish a SoV for net producers that they can’t steal from. A neutral zone if you will where global trade and the SoV of net producers is finally free. The TPTB do this under duress in order to reestablish and maintain critical trade flows ‘after’ the dust settles down for fiat currency wars.

This also why I own some silver because gold will be caught in the crosshairs of the upcoming currency war. I strongly suspect that it will be illegal to trade or even own gold for a period of time. It’s foolish to believe that any transition from the present order to Freegold will be smooth and/or immediate.

Silver is the most widely held SoV that is ‘also’ a critical commodity and operates almost 100% outside the realm of the TPTB unlike gold, silver is the people’s money if you will. As such silver ‘must’ flow even during a currency war just like food while also being a compact, liquid and portable hedge against hyper-inflation.

Post Freegold, the role of silver and other lesser SoV will be highly dependant on how they are treated relative to new fiat system and capital gains. I could easily see forward promises of future food production being a way to settle accounts for example; golden waves of grain, (ie real bills). So a wide ranging basket of SoV could also be included in the capital gains free zone needed to lubricate world trade. Thus the need for gold to be at 100x its incremental mining cost would not be necessary for trade clearing, 10x may be enough and frankly a little more stable and logical relative to all other SoV and tradable goods. Again I keep envisioning something along the lines of ‘Global’ Medieval Fair where a combination of fiat, goods and gold are used in a nearly infinite array of combinations aid by computers that can basically resolve the double coincidence of wants in real time.

The key to understanding powerful dynamics is to first understand how the TPTB use the fiat system to steal from ‘all’ net producers. In short you earn a fiat income that is taxed. What you have left over you save in various SoV. The government prints more money driving inflation and ‘increasing’ the paper value of your SoV. When you go to convert that SoV to fiat, they effectively tax their inflation via capital gains. In addition the purchasing power of fiat you received for the SoV is now less as well. So as a net producer you are exposed to three successive taxes all driven higher and higher depending upon the rate at which TPTB debase the fiat. In short as net producer it doesn’t matter where you place your SoV in the exiting order, you still lose between 50-100 percent of its effective purchasing power depending on the relative performance of most SoV ‘including’ gold.

Mircea said...


Definition of competition
[mass noun]

- the activity or condition of striving to gain or win something by defeating or establishing superiority over others.

- Ecology: interaction between animal or plant species, or individual organisms, that are attempting to gain a share of a limited environmental resource.

Definition of cooperation

the process of working together to the same end

What i want to say is that accumulation of to much wealth (no matter in what form) as the result of any activity is destructive for the society in the long run. Because wealth is translated to power and power corrupts.

Tyrannyofthepresent said...


Is my wedding ring safe? My wife's 5g 9 carat necklace? My 100g 18 carat builder's necklace (which I never wear, since I am not a builder)? My single 1886 sovereign? The other one from 1913? My ten 1966 Krugs? My 100g bar?

They will have to draw the line somewhere and gold and silver are both fungible.

Tyrannyofthepresent said...


Disclosure: all the gold items mentioned were obviously fictional, with the exception of the ring.

This comment has been removed by the author.

IRA question for those in a similar situation.

3 oz of physical gold(not in IRA)


$5000 of GTU(physical gold fund in IRA) + 1 oz of physical gold(with tax refund, not in IRA)

Both options cost $5000.

Motley Fool said...


Your words were clear, my problem is understanding what they mean.

So perhaps you would enlighten me, by way of example.

Let us assume I require my daily bread.

What would it mean for me to get it from a bakery in a cooperative economy instead of a competitive one?


Hill C said...

As a saver, I began buying gold in the fall of 2008. History proves gold does well during inflationary and, more so, during deflationary episodes. I clearly fell in the deflationary hard money camp. I was short stocks and long gold during the crash and held the position long after the Fed bought everything thing thinking deflation would overwhelm the system (ultimately giving back money on the stock side). I did not think the Fed would ever resort to throwing the ball of twine. Even if they did, I thought it would end and even believed them when they promised to stop. A few months later I stumbled upon A/FOA/FOFOA when looking for answers. And I confident I found the answers!

There are no other writings that fully predicted (well in advance) and explained the future actions of our government (Fed and Treasury). I contend that A/FOA provided a road map with great accuracy and at a time when the outcome would have been unthinkable given the economic boom we were experiencing in the late 1990s. If they have been wrong at all, it is only on timing and on the margins. This "gold trail" was well marked for all to see. No one has any more credibility than A/FOA on predicting the current situation. FOFOA was kind enough to re-discover the writings and translate them for a someone like me. For that I am grateful.

burningfiat said...


Disclosure: all the gold items mentioned were obviously fictional, with the exception of the ring.

Damn... Fictional? You were almost credible in the eyes of Duggo right there, had you not made that retraction...

There's no certainty – only opportunity. -V

I agree with this quote. Make the best of your one-shot, guys! If you believe silver is part of that, good luck to you!
Here we just believe, based on the writings of two (in our view) credible dudes, that physical gold is the wealth opportunity of a life time.
100% certainty? No, but an opportunity with really good odds (tremendously high upside, really low worst case downside)!

Selling your gold in times like this? Just like Jumbo Shrimp? Madness! Only Retardos will sell their parachute when the plane is obviously in a tail spin, but yeah, perhaps there is 0.3% chance that you'll survive this crash without the parachute. No such thing as certainty!

milamber said...


Sorry if I gave the impression that they are the same. What I was trying to get at is that I have always thought that the price that something is available to acquire determines its value. For example, if I were (in 2012) to go down to my LCS, and inquire about purchasing 1 OZ of gold, and the clerk were to say that will be $1Trillion dollars. I would pass on the purchase because I would not deem that transaction to be a good value.

But if that same clerk were to say that the same 1 OZ of gold were available for $35/oz, I would snap it up because I would perceive that to a great value.

Somewhere here, I am getting lost in the definitions between price & value. I am rereading some of the earlier discussions between, FOFOA, Blondie (as well as FOA in the Archives), but I am not quite there yet as it related to understanding FOFOA's answer to my MSFT example. But I am still working through FOFOA’s answer & I may figure out where I am missing it yet!



Unknown said...

(ach! sss... HERE at lasst is the place, precious...the Other place where FREEGOLD is disscussed... only there's no Oaken Table, what's thiss... quite the discussion under way!) >8-)

sean said...

Here's an interesting observation: the Fed has bought more US Government debt in 2013 than the Treasury has issued. (h/t Trader Dan)
I guess if no-one else wants it...

burningfiat said...

sean, that is so cool!
That signifies that the FED portion of total US debt now grows at a greater amount (and much greater rate) than the total US debt growth (aka the deficit). I think the absolute event horisont is reached at the latest when the FED owns all of USG debt. Although the End (the FED?) will probably come before that, as the good spaceship USG is pulled apart by the gradient of the (debt) black hole gravitational forces long before the event horizon is reached!

byiamBYoung said...


"Only Retardos will sell their parachute when the plane is obviously in a tail spin"

Props on the metaphor. I'm going to use that one.


Alex in Montana said...


There are many smart people (Marc Faber is one of them) who worry about gold possession and whether there is confiscation:

1) Does the US confiscate gold and silver again as they did in 1933? Marc Farber thinks it's a possibility.

2) Does the government nationalize the gold mines as this will be a heck of a temptation. Hugh Hendry thinks so.

3) Does the government slap a huge excess profits tax on gold when it is sold - cost basis proof be damned.

4) Does the government only allow gold sales to be sold to the governmnet itself at an "eminent domain" price?

5) Marc Faber suggests holding gold only in parts of Asia and Switzerland and he doesn't trust the Swiss even though he is Swiss.

Gold stock is huge - 160,000tons or so and can back currencies one way or another without a traditional gold standard as Jim Rickards suggests, but I DO NOT TRUST THE UNITED STATES when it comes to having physical gold.

So, in addition to owning physical gold I also hold silver not because I don't buy the arguments here. I do beleive and accept them. I hold some silver because I do not trust the FED Obama or Congress. Not even one little bit and I don't think you all here should trust them either. They have their interests at heart not yours. Only you have your interests at heart.

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