I wish I had time to say more on this topic, but for now, here is my quotation of the day, from my friend and adviser, Ed Bugos at the Dollar Vigilante website (I recommend that you join as a subscriber):
"If the world were on a gold standard, governments could not afford the wars they are involved in today, and there’d be no question of the West withdrawing from the Middle East, because we would not be able to afford it! If, instead of printing the money, the government said that it will increase taxes for everyone by $20,000 this year to fund their ongoing intervention in the Middle East in the name of democracy, there would be a lot less "Gotta Support The Troops" going around! Without the ability to print money, there’d be no military industrial complex."
- Ed Bugos, from The Dollar Vigilante Blog
In fact, I can say a little bit more on this subject, as I commented on Ed's post at the Dollar Vigilante site, as recapitulated below:
"OK. That was an interesting twist at the end. Where does the excess money printing end up? In the hands of terrorists, despots and dictators in the oil producing nations, and in the hands of the Military-Industrial Complex on our side of the pond! Now, you could write a book on military-industrial malinvestment!
"As to the crisis that produced Reagan and Thatcher, I suspect the next one will somehow be a blend of the 30s and the 70s, but I do not know which parts will figure into the final blend. Unfortunately, it will not be pretty, and it will be the direct result of money-printing!
"What I do know is that nobody will be calling, "The bottom is in! Buy real estate/stocks/whatever now!" The bottom will appear endless, and gold will be the ONLY bright light at that point...."
(Credit: The poster used above and the US dollar chart below came from this interesting article.)
(Disclaimer: The above comments are not directed at any particular military venture, some of which are needed in my view, but rather at the type of world that is created by printing money rather than paying our bills....)
Additional comment: Regarding the present intervention in Libya, the application of the above lesson runs something like this: (1) Money-printing (inflationary monetary policy) made oil expensive, enriching (and arming) such despotic leaders as Qaddafi. (2) We "solve" the problem with MORE money-printing, to pay for military interventions to protect the Libyan people from the ruthless leader whose ascendancy we funded in the first place! (3) The devastating consequences? We'll "solve" that with money-printing yet again! I hope you can see where this is going.... The cycle continues literally until the currency reaches the point of inflationary collapse. Then, hopefully at least for a while, we learn to live within our means again!