By Aves Hawk
Last night, I was at the official launch of The Ludwig von Mises Institute of Canada, in Toronto. I had the opportunity to meet the Director, Redmond Weissenberger, as well as talk with several libertarian and free-market type personalities. It was a breath of fresh air to say the least.
For those who do not know, Ludwig von Mises was one the most influential Austrian Economists in the last century. One of his greatest works is Human Action, where he explains economics from one simple principle; that humans act. He made many other great contributions, many of which can be found in online bookstores, such as Amazon, or in ebook format at the original Ludvig von Mises Institute, located in Auburn, Alabama.
One topic that continued to surface last night was voting. The upcoming election in Canada really has people excited for change but in reality it won't change a whole lot, if anything at all.
Canadian politics are about as dull as politics can get. Every election, its the same story. Do you vote liberal or do you vote conservative? Or maybe Green Party or NDP? It really doesn't matter because they are all different flavours of the same thing. All of them gripe and complain about a different issue (some of which are legitimate), but all of them offer the same solution. All of them offer to fix the problem through more socialism, more market intervention, more regulations, more spending, etc. It's all the same thing; central planning.
I've written about centralization and central planning in a few other posts so I won't bore you to death with the many reasons why central planning doesn't work. The point is simply that central planning has created the problems that these political groups complain about in the first place. So why would we want to fix the problem of central planning with more central planning? Kind of like drinking yourself sober, or taking on more debt to get out of debt isn't it? It just doesn't work.
By participating in the voting process you are legitimizing the whole idea of central planning. In one of my previous posts I talked about the real way to vote. There are way more powerful and effective ways to vote. You vote every day with your actions and with your use of capital, regardless of whether you do so beause of planned action or chance.
'Voting with your feet' is a common phrase used when people move from one region to another in search of a home where the Government has relatively little influence in people's lives. In simple terms, where you choose to live is one way to vote because it means your actions approve of the local Government. Remember it's action that matters, even Mises seemed to think so. You can gripe, complain, protest, rant, or campaign all you want. If at the end of the day your actions don't back up all of that talk, then that's all it is; talk. So by living somewhere, you are 'voting in favour' of the conditions that come along with that location, and one of the main factors is the level of Government influence in your daily life.
You can vote with how you save your money. Do you keep your savings in paper money where the Government has the ability to confiscate at will via inflation? When the real interest rate is negative (interest rate does not keep pace with rate of inflation), as is the case today, you are allowing the Government to take your savings. Why not invest your savings in real assets, or maybe even save using real money such as gold or silver?
You can vote with how you spend your money. Do you buy your groceries from the Government protected monopoly that is 'chemical agriculture' and 'factory food production' (which produces toxic food instead of healthy food)? Or do you buy from a small producer? Do you take care of your health to prevent from getting sick and supporting the Government protected monopoly that is called 'big-pharma' and 'free-health-care' (which is paid for by taxpayers, has lousy service and mainly offers drugs as the solution)? Do you buy electricity from the Government protected monopoly called Hydro One (which over-charges for its service and suffers from frequent blackouts and power outages)? Or do you get off the grid and produce your own?
What about the Libertarian Party? If you want to vote, this is the best option by far. These people favour limited-government and are more focused on using their campaign to educate and raise awareness. They understand that participating in politics is counter to their philosophy but is still an effective way to spread their ideas.
However, as the libertarian party grows and expands in support, it will gradually transform into just another socialist party. Look at what happened to the Tea Party in the US. Also, remember that the original Democratic and Liberal Parties in the US and Canada respectively, used to be libertarian parties as well. Power corrupts even the well-intentioned and that is the problem with centralizing power.
Voting is a waste of time and effort. I don't want to take time and effort to go to the voting booth, let alone spend valuable brain power to decide who I should vote for. I have better things to do; such as take my savings out of the bank and other useless paper assets (bonds, most stocks, GLD and SLV) and go down to the local coin shop and get some real money (gold and silver). Now that's what I call a real vote instead of a paper vote.
Here are some items worth mentioning:
The 'rebel's in Lybia set up their own central bank - This is simply unheard of. No 'rebel' force has ever setup their own central bank. It completely defeats the purpose of revolution. Maybe Gadafi is not the bad guy everyone thinks after-all? He did build the world's greatest man-made river to make water available for drinking and irrigation. Libya also didn't have a CB until the rebels showed up. Maybe it's the US-backed 'rebels' that are the problem? False-flag attacks and colour revolutions?
Bob Chapman on petty Elites and real money – He discusses the futility of central planning and the feeble attempts by the elite to control the markets. The inevitable result is a transfer for wealth from paper assets into silver and gold.
Harvey Organ's commentary on gold/silver manipulation, a plummeting dollar and rising gold and silver prices – Harvey does great work to uncover some of the things going on behind the scenes in the gold and silver market. He makes an astute observation yesterday that the dollar is teetering on a cliff and it wouldn't take much for it to fall off the deep end.
Doug Casey and Louis James on the Fall of Rome - They discuss the expansion of the Empire through war, conquest and slavery and the eventual political gutting, starting loosely around 300AD, that destroyed the Roman economy. Inflation, taxes and capital controls were the new norm and trade collapsed. The few that saw it coming, moved their capital to the East (Byzantine), where real money (gold coins) under Constantine, allowed the economy to thrive for another 1000 years.
They also mention my favourite comic book series; Asterix, the Gaul. It is a French production that tells the story of Caesar's efforts to conquer Gaul (France). The main plot of the story is that one tribe in the far North of Gaul is resisting Roman occupation. The two main protagonists are Asterix and Obelix and the series follows their adventures. When they are not busy defending their homes from Roman invasion they participate in their thriving and peaceful local economy. It is a story of liberty against imperialist conquest with a great historical backdrop.