Gold helps the world economy work, but there’s too little of it for a “gold standard” to be realistic. Will we next move to a digital currency? Author James Ledbetter joined Thursday’s “The Morning Blaze with Doc Thompson” to explain the American fascination with gold and put the rare currency in historical context.
In his new book, “One Nation under Gold,” he detailed the history of gold in America and how the precious metal influenced U.S. monetary policy and became a national fascination. Even though it’s been around 50 years since U.S. currency was tied to gold, it’s still associated with wealth, stability and American leadership.
“Gold still has that sense of world domination,” Ledbetter said.
President Richard Nixon declared the end of the gold standard in 1971. While the author claims it’s no longer realistic to keep the U.S. to a standard where gold backs every dollar, gold is still a major component of the world economy, with most central banks holding large reserves.
How does gold compare to bitcoin and other digital currencies that are growing in value? While gold and bitcoin are polar opposites in that gold is tangible and bitcoin is a digital currency, they have something in common.
“Gold is the ultimate physical embodiment of value; it comes from the ground. Bitcoin doesn’t exist in the real world,” Ledbetter noted. “At the same time, I think there is an overlap in their appeal in that they both appeal to people who are skeptical about the Federal Reserve and central banks.”