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Old 05-23-2010, 08:45 AM   #161
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The CPI validity is one of the most often discussed topics around here. You can find links to threads discussing the hedonic adjustment controversy dating back to creation - of this forum, that is:

(FAQ archive) The Consumer Price Index (CPI) and its validity... or not.
Jeez, this is exactly where I dropped out of the forum the last time.

It's not about CPI. CPI is a symptom, not the disease.
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Old 05-23-2010, 09:54 AM   #162
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I stopped by this forum a few months ago saying something pretty similar and then found myself dealing with people who can best be described as often wrong but never in doubt.

For me.... there is just so much gold this and gold that that I can stand... I used to have a friend who would basically say the same thing as the OP... but back in the late 70s and during the whole 80s.... finally we stopped talking to each other....

If you want to put in some interesting posts in other threads... great.. I would like to get your opinion... but I would suggest that maybe the person who is often wrong but never in doubt is you....


Let's do an experiment.... where do YOU think gold prices will be in one year... we will come back and take a look at how good you did....
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Old 05-23-2010, 10:58 AM   #163
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A discussion of whether we are headed for a stretch of accelerated inflation is a legitimate discussion, as is a discussion of whether holding physical gold will help protect one's portfolio. We have had both discussions on here before and undoubtedly will again.

But the accompanying conspiracy theories about the Federal Reserve Board and the Supreme Court, and arguments about the long-settled constitutionality of paper money, add nothing and detract much from what are otherwise legitimately arguable positions.

I submit that if anyone wants to start either of the discussions I noted above, they do so in a sober and measured way. Ranting only ensures that no one will listen (and usually leads to moderator action at some point).
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Old 05-23-2010, 11:30 AM   #164
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It's the nature of a forum or any more or less cohesive group to suppress dissent. It doesn't matter that we are often wrong, wrong we don't mind.

Want we don't want to be is open to criticism.

For example, the "mention" of moderation above. How is it established that the Federal Reserve may not in fact be a main cause of our instability? I consider that Bernanke and even more Greenspan were and are legitimate targets for criticism. In fact, why does one have to estblish the legitimacy of criticism? Are't people grown up enough to evaluate arguments?

Anyone who looks to ER.org for advice about what to do with his/her money will be guaranteed of getting a board approved subset of academic and FA consensus.

That should work out spectacularly!

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Old 05-23-2010, 11:35 AM   #165
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Old 05-23-2010, 11:37 AM   #166
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LOL I guess so.
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Old 05-23-2010, 11:42 AM   #167
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For example, the "mention" of moderation above. How is it established that the Federal Reserve may not in fact be a main cause of our instability?
That was just my observation that these type of threads almost inevitably deteriorate to ranting diatribes where everyone shouts and no one listens. Whether the Federal Reserve has taken, is taking or will take wise and/or proper action is a legitimate discussion. Even whether the Federal Reserve should exist at all could legitimately be discussed.

It is not the particular substance of any argument that is problematic, but the way it is presented. I have no particular dog in the fight, but it appears to me that opponents of the Fed have in past discussions been unable to present their views in a reasoned and restrained fashion. As a consequence, few people take them seriously.
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Old 05-23-2010, 12:08 PM   #168
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True enough I guess, as people who present these things are often true believers of one sort or another, or are the very least people with jammed social antennae that are not easily silenced or controlled.

But it is also true that in times past we in the US thought that there was a social and political value in allowing unpopular or aggressively presented opinions- not only because it is guaranteed to us, but because as a society we would on balance benefit from this intellectual and social freedom.

I know this forum is more like a privately owned mall than it is like a public space, and from time to time the moderators have reminded us of that. So I am not arguing that anything should be different, anymore than I would argue that a cat should be a dog. I am just wondering if a certain narrowness may not be the price?

Ha
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Old 05-23-2010, 01:58 PM   #169
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I think one can have deeply held convictions and still present a reasoned and reasonable argument that won't drive people off. For example, the Christian Coalition was so successful back in the 90's precisely because Ralph Reed came across as a reasonable guy, not some whacky religious fanatic.
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Old 05-23-2010, 02:37 PM   #170
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True enough I guess, as people who present these things are often true believers of one sort or another, or are the very least people with jammed social antennae that are not easily silenced or controlled.

But it is also true that in times past we in the US thought that there was a social and political value in allowing unpopular or aggressively presented opinions- not only because it is guaranteed to us, but because as a society we would on balance benefit from this intellectual and social freedom.

I know this forum is more like a privately owned mall than it is like a public space, and from time to time the moderators have reminded us of that. So I am not arguing that anything should be different, anymore than I would argue that a cat should be a dog. I am just wondering if a certain narrowness may not be the price?

Ha
You bring up some interesting points Ha. It's easy for a forum like this to develop a certain type of "groupthink". Perhaps that's why it's good for someone to challenge us once in a while.

Here's a wiki article on groupthink: Groupthink - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 05-23-2010, 02:55 PM   #171
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You bring up some interesting points Ha. It's easy for a forum like this to develop a certain type of "groupthink". Perhaps that's why it's good for someone to challenge us once in a while.

Here's a wiki article on groupthink: Groupthink - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 05-23-2010, 09:01 PM   #172
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Meanwhile, on the hyperinflation front . . .

Coupon strippers declare inflation dead in zero coupon bond revival

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The call for Strips, which started in 1985 after former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker broke the back of inflation, suggests growing bullishness toward the bond market after the Bank of America Merrill Lynch U.S. Treasury Master Index fell 3.7 percent in 2009. Yields on Treasury Inflation- Protected Securities show money managers expect the consumer price index to increase an average 1.94 annually next 10 years, down from 2.43 percent as recently as April 29.
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Old 05-23-2010, 09:11 PM   #173
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For me.... there is just so much gold this and gold that that I can stand... I used to have a friend who would basically say the same thing as the OP... but back in the late 70s and during the whole 80s.... finally we stopped talking to each other....
I have often told the story of how close friends of mine withdrew all their 401k, took a big tax hit to buy gold. This was in the late 80s, and there was no gold ETF then to buy in an IRA account, of course. They got hurt big time as the price of gold dropped, and then capitulated to buy stocks in the late 90s, just to see the market tanked.

I still talk to them. I would not rub salt into their wounds, and avoid bringing this matter up. That's how we remain friends.
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Old 05-23-2010, 09:45 PM   #174
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I have often told the story of how close friends of mine withdrew all their 401k, took a big tax hit to buy gold. This was in the late 80s, and there was no gold ETF then to buy in an IRA account, of course. They got hurt big time as the price of gold dropped, and then capitulated to buy stocks in the late 90s, just to see the market tanked.

I still talk to them. I would not rub salt into their wounds, and avoid bringing this matter up. That's how we remain friends.
It was other things that broke us up.... not the talk of gold...

BTW, he also was someone who was thinking about following some nut job who said that you did not have to file income tax returns if you never opened up a checking account and a few other items.... I can not remember the whole thing, but something to do with not being a citizen of the US, but living under the law of the sea or something... you were not a citizen of any country.... maybe this should go under that renounce your US citizenship thread...

But really, he knew of some guy who had not filed tax returns for over 20 years...
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Old 05-24-2010, 07:07 AM   #175
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But really, he knew of some guy who had not filed tax returns for over 20 years...
This reminds me of the movie Off the Map. In this case, the family didn't need to file because their income was so low but an IRS agent came to audit them anyway. His life was changed.

Here's a description on Yahoo movies. I loved this movie.

Off the Map (2005) - Movie Info - Yahoo! Movies
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Old 05-24-2010, 07:56 AM   #176
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You bring up some interesting points Ha. It's easy for a forum like this to develop a certain type of "groupthink". Perhaps that's why it's good for someone to challenge us once in a while.
Except the substance of the OP's message is a pretty consensus view around here . . . that inflation and interest rates are heading higher and probably much higher. If he approached the subject differently he would have gotten a warm welcome with nary a challenge to his underlying thesis.

I'll also point out that one of the other "consensus" views around here, that the US Dollar is doomed, hasn't been doing that well either . . .

Dollar to become "growth currency" during next decade.
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Old 05-24-2010, 04:52 PM   #177
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It was other things that broke us up.... not the talk of gold...

BTW, he also was someone who was thinking about following some nut job who said that you did not have to file income tax returns if you never opened up a checking account and a few other items.... I can not remember the whole thing, but something to do with not being a citizen of the US, but living under the law of the sea or something... you were not a citizen of any country.... maybe this should go under that renounce your US citizenship thread...

But really, he knew of some guy who had not filed tax returns for over 20 years...
Well, I had a friend who was as nutty and claimed that SS and taxes were just plain wrong. And instead of hiding, he made known his intention of not paying to them by writing letters to the gummint, like a conscientious objector. I lost contact with him, and later learned that he was taken to court and ordered to pay all that he owed plus penalty and interest. I guess because he was not hiding, they did not put him in jail.

Last I learned, he is now filing taxes like everybody else.
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Old 05-24-2010, 05:02 PM   #178
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I'll also point out that one of the other "consensus" views around here, that the US Dollar is doomed, hasn't been doing that well either . . .
And some people believe TARP was good, government underwriting of private business risk was not a problem, and the massive government red ink is nothing to be concerned about--and cite as proof snippets that show that everything is great..

So, a guy falls out of a twentieth floor window. He's panicked, but as he passes the tenth floor he cheers up. "Well, this hasn't been so bad --I'm halfway down and I haven't felt a thing."
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Old 05-24-2010, 08:12 PM   #179
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And some people believe TARP was good, government underwriting of private business risk was not a problem, and the massive government red ink is nothing to be concerned about--and cite as proof snippets that show that everything is great..

So, a guy falls out of a twentieth floor window. He's panicked, but as he passes the tenth floor he cheers up. "Well, this hasn't been so bad --I'm halfway down and I haven't felt a thing."
It's that landing I'm most concerned about, IMO no one really know which floor we were pushed fell out of...
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Old 05-24-2010, 10:29 PM   #180
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There are actually quite a few different hard currencies besides gold and silver that you can invest in. I'm thinking about adding some of these to my portfolio - Dirty Roman Coins.
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