QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong, I think I am starting to understand your view of inflation. It is very complex. I think some people cannot think beyond a simple one dimension concept as you often say. So I am trying to be more dynamic in my thinking process. Here you point out that when debt is collateral it is the same as printing money but worse because it pays interest. Then you point out that hyperinflation takes place not because of printing money but because a collapse in confidence and people then hoard their wealth which reduces the economic output and that compels a government to print more to cover expenses. So there is a line that is crossed and kicks in that collapse in confidence as in Venezuela. This is very interesting but complex. Is this a fair statement?
ANSWER: You are doing very well. You are correct. Some people cannot get beyond an increase in money supply is automatically inflationary. If that was true, then 10 years of quantitative easing by the ECB failed completely in that theory. They too cannot get beyond this simple-minded one dimension concept. There is yet another dimension that these people who will say I am wrong while clinging to the old theories that they fail to understand. The BULK of the money is actually created by the banks in leveraged lending. If I lent you $100 and you signed a note that you would repay it, then the note becomes my asset on my balance sheet. I can take that to a bank and borrow on my account receivables. In this instance, just you are I are creating money. Now let a bank stand between us. I deposit $100 and they lend it to you. We now both have accounts that show we have $100. We just doubled the money supply and nobody printed anything. These people that yelled that Quantitative Easing would produce hyperinflation and gold would soar, refuse to admit that everything they have relied upon is an old theory that no longer applies to our modern society. Money is now debt issued by the government, debt created privately, and the physical money issued. But the actual paper money is a tiny fraction of the real money supply.