The last two weeks, Barron’s economics columnist Gene Epstein has written an excellent two part case for gold:
“Greenspan Was Right: The Case for Gold, Part I” (subscription required)
“Restoring Balance: The Case for Gold, Part II” (subscription required)
The key to understanding the pervasive cycle of boom and bust, including the one we are currently undergoing, is understanding the role that government manipulation of the money supply plays.
The greatest economist of the 20th century, Ludwig von Mises, is the pioneering and paramount figure here. His The Theory of Money and Credit (1912) was his first foray into the connection between monetary policy and the boom and bust cycle. His Human Action (1949) is the best book on economics written in the 20th century.
Greenspan’s 1966 essay cited by Epstein, “Gold and Economic Freedom”, is from a collection of essays by Ayn Rand published as Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal. Rand learned monetary economics by studying von Mises’s Human Action and Greenspan was exposed to Mises via his relationship with her.
Also quoted in the article is the contemporary economist George Reisman, a professor at Pepperdine University, whose epic Capitalism: A Treatise On Economics is a fusion of the ideas of Ayn Rand and Ludwig von Mises in the field of economics.