|The Problem with Paper Shortages|
|Tuesday, 31 May 2011 16:56|
I have often heard the old saying that we humans never learn from history and we have a bad habit of repeating the same old mistakes time and time again. I have written several columns about the seriousness of the financial fallout that seems destined to happen to our country. Throughout history other peoples have had to endure the consequences of their poor handling of their economic systems. Before their empire fell, the ancient Romans devalued their Denarius silver coin by 50%, history shows time and time again that when a currency is destroyed it can have disastrous effects upon a country or society. A couple of recent examples include Zimbabwe and Argentina.
I have found that most people take for granted the importance of currency, it is a means to transact business without having to barter goods with someone who does not have the items that we need. Currency is also a medium for us to trade our time for something of value and to have that savings to purchase the things we need at our convenience. For the people that held Zimbabwe dollars, they saw their entire savings wiped out when it was devalued to nothing and the government discontinued its use. In the case of Argentina, it was one of the most progressive and modern countries in South America their currency was devalued to one fourth of it’s value, overnight the citizens of that country saw all of their necessities costing them four times what it previously did. In addition, the people of Argentina experienced bank closings and huge unemployment numbers.
I recently read about similar problems in the nation of Belarus, just recently the Belarusian ruble was devalued by 56%. It now takes three times the rubles to buy food and clothing as it did before the ruble was devalued. The citizens of that country are spending their money as fast as they can while it still has some value. According to the report many store shelves are bare, even toilet paper has been in short supply.
We Americans need to understand that just printing more money will not insulate us from economic storms. I sincerely hope that we don’t experience the hardships that the people of Zimbabwe, Argentina and Belarus have and are experiencing. Many people in our country don’t want to worry about issues like the economy, they feel that for some reason we in America are completely immune to such problems. But if we are to suffer the shortage of things such as toilet paper, maybe we can use some of the newly printed money for that purpose.