In economic, social, environmental and many other terms, we are all in for the biggest ride in history. What you see right now is just the tip of the iceberg. You can compare some events in U.S. history with the Titanic. When she was built she was the biggest luxury cruise ship in the world.
She was built with pride using the best materials available. She was touted as the safest, most luxurious vessel afloat.
People were confident that she could take on the worst weather, push her way through the biggest icebergs and endure through any calamity the seas could throw at her. However, the Titanic was flawed from the very beginning, and it was that initial weakness in her design that ultimately led to her sinking.
Similarly to the story of the Titanic, very proud and intelligent persons in the U.S., along with some equally self-serving advice from their European banking counterparts, engineered a marvel of finance on a grand scale. In 1913 the Fed, which is nothing more than a cartel of private bankers that control the money supply, was sold to an unsuspecting public and their representatives.
An extension of the idea of centralized banking systems that had seen development in almost all western countries during the 18th and 19th centuries, the Fed was seen by many at the time as the stalwart captain at the helm of the ship of money and finance.
The Fed has now run into just the tip of an iceberg that will ultimately sink the U.S. economy and take other economies along with it. Like the Titanic, the Fed has a fatal flaw, possibly the biggest in the history of the United States. Like the Titanic, the Fed's makers and captains have realized only too late the nature of their hubris around this flaw when it comes to navigating the behemoth U.S. economy to safe harbors around the world.
Goodbye Money - The Abandonment of The Gold Standard
A second flaw was created in our economy in 1974 when President Nixon convinced the senate to abandon the gold standard, and to push the rest of the world to make the dollar the global trading currency. Together, the creation of the Fed and the abandonment of the gold standard are the cornerstones of our current financial disaster. You will learn more about these two pivotal events in a following chapter.
In 1912 the world learned of the horrific tragedy of the Titanic's sinking, a disaster that claimed more than 1,500 lives. In 2008 we all were witness to how the olympian U.S. economy hit its own iceberg and began its startling descent, pulling hundreds of thousands of individuals and businesses into the vortex along with it.
The death toll for this disaster has yet to be fully determined. We now know that the U.S. economy had been perilously close to sinking for some time, by the estimates of some experts a matter of hours away from total bankruptcy, kept afloat only by 'lifeboats' of dollars printed out of nothing more substantial than air.
Like the dot com bubble before it, the housing bubble of 2006 had burst, this time with even more far-reaching consequences. The lifeboats can only go so far. Sooner, rather than later, the U.S. economy will ultimately lose its remaining buoyancy and nothing in the world can stop its plunge to the depths.
When the U.S. economy does sink it will negatively impact all major industrialized countries even more than before. The initial bump into the iceberg is just a hint of what is in store for the world at large. No one anywhere in the world will be immune from the tsunami created with so many economic vessels on their way to oblivion.
There are no lifeboats large enough to withstand a wave of economic destruction on that scale.
Never before in human history have we relied on the titanic structure of one economy to serve as the bellwether for the entire global market. It was only recently in relative terms that the global marketplace had begun to function as an interconnected whole rather than as a bucket of bolts.
Our global financial perspective was one of calm seas and clear skies, enabled by advances in electronic market reporting with billions of transactions taking place in just microseconds. Staggering amounts of money are landing in far-flung ports around the world with precision and certainty - much like cargo during our grandfathers' time made its way from one exotic locale to another around the world.
However, our grandfathers' markets were a different order of magnitude altogether. The effects of modern investment and banking vehicles, coupled with nearly instantaneous exchange of untold wealth, mean potentially great windfalls as well as disastrous shortfalls.