The abandonment of honest money

By Around the Web

(New York Sun) — George Gilder’s brilliant new book — “The Scandal of Money” — underscores an odd fact. There’s an expanding list of newspapermen and writers who, having reached a certain age and covered the intellectual and political wars, have turned late in their careers and at the peak of their powers to the problem of money. They are riveted by the recognition that our abandonment of a system of honest money is at the root of our national travail.

James Grant does this in his famed bi-weekly, the Interest Rate Observer (the latest number opens with an essay on what he calls the “inflation cheering section”). Steve Forbes has brought out two late-career books on this head, including “Money,” which is a call for a restoration of the gold standard. The dean of American editorial writers, George Melloan, who spent a long career at the Wall Street Journal, has brought out “The Great Money Binge.”

What is so special about Mr. Gilder’s contribution is its radicality. He opens with a quote from Friedrich Hayek asserting that the “source and root of all monetary evil” is “the government monopoly on the issue and control of money.” He brings to the question an almost Supermanly x-ray vision that enables him to see through orthodoxy, and he opens by brushing aside the Federal Reserve, on which so many focus for its role in our long travail.

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