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Benjamin Anderson on the Gold Standard


“Surely the history of money has made sufficiently clear the dangers and evils of irredeemable paper, the fundamental disorganization and demoralization that such paper can occasion, to make argument with reference to the essential importance of the preservation of the gold standard unnecessary.”

So said Benjamin Anderson in his 1919 book The Effects of the War on the Money, Banking, Credit System of the United States, a book that is surprising pro-Fed because he, like many others of his generation, believed that the central bank was the best hope for maintaining sound money in light of the system’s tendency toward relentless bouts of expansion, contraction, and bailout. This underscores just how unique was Mises’s own level of insight to understand that no matter what else the central bank would promise, politics and institutional incentives would always gives its policies an inflationary bias.

Anderson got better as the years went on, but we’ve posted this early work just to have it available.

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