Housing bubble and bust

Liberty Unbound
by Edmund Contoski

The popular definition of ‘inflation’ is a general increase in the level of prices. But what causes the price level to rise? It is an increase in the money supply without a corresponding increase in goods and services; there is more money with which to bid up the prices of available goods and services. Inflation used to mean an increase in the money supply without an increase in physical assets, namely gold or silver. Higher prices are the result. Replacing the traditional meaning of inflation with the popular one, which refers to the effect rather than the cause, has obscured the fact that government is the cause since it controls the money supply. ‘Inflation,’ writes economist Kelley L. Ross, ‘does not occur because of a ‘wage-price spiral,’ an ‘overheated’ economy, excessive economic growth, or through any other natural mechanism of the market. A government debasing the currency would not have fooled anyone a century ago. Now, through deception, a government can try to blame inflation on anything but its own irresponsible actions’... (for publication 07/08)

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Informant: Thomas L. Knapp



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