(Kitco News) – Denver – The masses would never consider allowing the size of a kilogram to fluctuate, the founding editor of the New York Sun told the 2013 Denver Gold Forum on Monday. That’s because nobody would know whether they were getting the appropriate quantity of any product they might purchase in kilograms.
Yet, the U.S. dollar is allowed to “float” under a fiat currency system, with the end result that the value of the greenback has fallen sharply in the last half century, said veteran financial journalist Seth Lipsky. Such a move would have dismayed the founding fathers of the U.S., who clearly felt the dollar should be tied to precious metals, he said.
Lipsky gave a keynote speech titled “Mainstreaming the Gold Standard” at the 2013 Denver Gold Forum. He called on the U.S. to return to some kind of gold standard, and urged those attending the Gold Forum not to be shy about entering the political fray.
In an interview ahead of his speech with Kitco News, Lipsky described the New York Sun as an online newspaper standing for limited government, free enterprise, strong foreign policy and “sound and honest money,” carrying more editorials on the gold standard than any other newspaper in the U.S. A book, “It Shines For All,” includes many of the editorials from the Sun for a gold standard and was distributed to those attending the speech.
“I tend to look at it through the prism of the United States Constitution and the founding fathers of the republic,” Lipsky told Kitco News. “I often talk about the fact that Constitution gave Congress the power to coin money and regulate the value thereof in the same sentence in which it also gives Congress the power to fix the standards of weights and measurements.”
Lipsky said the founders “hated” paper fiat money. “The Constitution uses the word ‘dollars’ twice,” he said. “But it doesn’t define them.”
However, he maintained, the record is “crystal clear” what the founders meant by the term dollar – 371 1/4 grains of pure silver or the equivalent value of gold. This, he said, is how dollars were defined under the Articles of Confederation that preceded the Constitution. It was also spelled out either this way, or 416 grains of standard silver, in the Coinage Act of 1792. This, Lipsky explained, was the same as Spanish milled dollar.
The idea that the dollar today would be worth only a 1/1,300 of an ounce of gold would have “shocked” the founding fathers, Lipsky said.
Lipsky began his speech to the Denver Gold Forum by recounting a discovery made several years ago that an object considered the official kilogram – stored in France under three glass domes accessed by three different keys – is reportedly losing some of its mass. This creates urgency since the item is supposed to represent constancy.
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