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Ep. 226 Murphy vs Weisenthal on Currency Debasement

Bob critiques a Guardian article from an economist favoring price controls, and explains his argument with Joe Weisenthal about the social benefit of saving actual cash.

Mentioned in the Episode and Other Links of Interest:

The audio production for this episode was provided by Podsworth Media.

About the author, Robert

Christian and economist, Chief Economist at infineo, and Senior Fellow with the Mises Institute.


  1. Dave H on 01/06/2022 at 4:01 AM

    If it’s immoral to retain purchasing power over 100 years, why is it not also immoral to retain purchasing power for 1 year? Or 1 week? Or any time at all? The entire concept here is absurd.

    And Bob just started addressing this in the show as I’m listening. Love it.

  2. Aaron on 01/07/2022 at 6:47 PM

    glad you’re back!

  3. Tel on 01/12/2022 at 12:15 PM

    Let’s suppose I was able to somehow jump 100 years into the future, so I spend my current fiat money (“purchasing power” if that’s a better term) and buy a chunk of gold which I bury at a secret location, where no one else will find it. OK … hopefully Joe Weisenthal can’t come up with anything immoral so far … I worked, I earned, I purchased an object and did something with my purchase.

    These leftist “up da wukka” type people should be cool with me earning a salary and spending it … you would think.

    Jumping 100 years into the future I dig up that gold bar and look for something to exchange at whatever the going rate is. I don’t have the power to force other people to offer me any guarantee, in terms of what I might exchange … and it would be immoral to demand some particular price of my choosing in the currency of the day. It could be that someone in the meantime figured out a way to somehow create gold in a cheap atom printer and my buried bar is almost worthless. On the other hand, perhaps there’s a great shortage and gold is worth a whole heap more 100 years in the future … as a time traveler I need to accept those personal risks.

    However, what Weisenthal appears to be saying is that his concept of morality includes some guy popping up 100 years in the future and demanding some share of my gold bar, because for some reason this person has a better claim to my earnings (at whatever exchange rate) than I do … well who is this guy? What gives him a claim on what I worked for? That’s always the place where people like Weisenthal always get a bit hazy.

    You know the Guardian is a lot like Krugman … only without the subtlety and sophistication. They both wanna take your stuff, but the Guardian pretty much goes right out and says, “We have decided that we get to take your stuff,” while Krugman comes up with an elaborate scheme where you just find all your stuff has been taken. Not sure which type of leftist I prefer.

  4. Tel on 01/24/2022 at 1:18 AM

    Dr. Merrill Matthews interviews Dr. David Henderson, discussing the history of price controls and the type of problems we can expect. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to explain this stuff, but David Henderson does a pretty decent job of it … Bob got out the gate a couple of weeks earlier.

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