Friday, July 15, 2016

Is Mike Pence a Supporter of a Gold Standard?

By Robert Wenzel

The New York Sun wrote the following on Thursday about Mike Pence, the apparent choice of Donald Trump  for the VP slot on the GOP ticket:
Donald Trump’s choice of Mike Pence for vice president would — if it is confirmed tomorrow — be a promising pick for those of us who see a restoration of sound money as the essential precondition for returning America’s economy to a trajectory of jobs and growth. No doubt he has lots of other virtues, in that he has experience and success as both a congressman and governor. Were he ever called to the presidency, he would be prepared. But the feature of his political agenda that we have been watching for years is that in respect of monetary reform.
This point was marked in these columns in January 2011, after Mr. Pence, then a congressman from Indiana and chairman of the House Republican Conference, addressed the Detroit Economic Club. He did not come right out and declare for the gold standard. But he did make it clear that he understood that the time for monetary reform had arrived. “What are the building blocks of an incentive-based, growth agenda?” he asked. The first of his five building blocks was “sound monetary policy.
I'm a little suspicious. Pence appears to be a Paul Ryan supply-sider. Ryan, of course, talks a free market game but ends up just rejiggering the elitist framework, nothing more.

Here is a bit from the January 17,2011 article The Sun references;
He laid this out in a speech last year at the Detroit Economic Club, where he declared, “Sound monetary policy is the foundation of our prosperity. A strong dollar means a strong America.” He quoted Lawrence Kudlow as saying, “The Fed can print money, but it can’t print jobs.” He opposed the Federal Reserve’s campaign of quantitative easing. He said he wasn’t laying blame “solely at the feet of the Federal Reserve.” The problem for the Fed, he said, began in 1977 with Humphrey-Hawkins, which imposed the dual mandate that requires the Fed to look not only at stabilizing prices but at maximizing employment.

The congressman didn’t come right out and declare for a gold standard, though he acknowledged that such is what Jack Kemp, were he alive today, would have urged him to do. But he did swing behind the call by the president of the World Bank, Robert Zoelick, to “re-think the international currency system, including the role of gold” — and, Mr. Pence added, “I agree.” The time has come, he said, “to have a debate over gold and the proper role it should play in our nation’s monetary affairs.” 
That puts Mr. Pence in a group of political leaders who are forming an avant-garde for what we believe will be the most important issue in 2012. These figures range from Ron Paul, who is the grand old man of the movement for sound money, to Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who asked the famous question that got Chariman Bernanke to confess he didn’t know what to make of the collapse in the gold value of the dollar, to Sarah Palin, who first addressed the collapse of the dollar — it’s now down to little more than a 1,400th of an ounce of gold — in a speech in Hong Kong and has, more recently, made the highest profile challenge to Chairman Bernanke on the Fed’s campaign of quantitative easing.
I shudder to see Ron Paul's name in the same sentence as Paul Ryan.

And what is this about the problem with the Fed being that they have a dual mandate? The problem with the Fed is that they have any mandate at all. As I made clear in a speech at the New York Federal Reserve Bank, and said specifically about the building at 33 Liberty Street in Manhattan, the place should be closed down and left to the four-legged rats.

It appears that what we have in Pence is a sneak in the Ronald Reagan mold. He for sure takes fashion tips from Roger Stone, perhaps reading and re-reading Stone fashion advice. But don't think for a minute he is sound on economics, money, gold or the Federal Reserve. He is a well-dressed puppet of the ruling elite, placed in key positions for his skill in carrying on the Reagan pretty-boy character while advancing the establishment agenda with the same aplomb as Reagan.

Robert Wenzel is Editor & Publisher of and Target Liberty. He is also author of The Fed Flunks: My Speech at the New York Federal Reserve Bank. Follow him on twitter:@wenzeleconomics. Wenzel on LinkedIn

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