The End of National Currency: The Unholy Alliance
The End of National Currency
The Unholy Alliance
"The rich rule over the poor,
and the borrower is servant to the lender." 
The following rejoinder is in response to the article The End of National Currency, by Benn Steil, from Foreign Affairs, May/June 2007. The quote below is the paper's summary abstract.
"Summary: Global financial instability has sparked a surge in 'monetary nationalism' -- the idea that countries must make and control their own currencies. But globalization and monetary nationalism are a dangerous combination, a cause of financial crises and geopolitical tension. The world needs to abandon unwanted currencies, replacing them with dollars, euros, and multinational currencies as yet unborn." 
While it may be true that world-wide financial instability has caused an increase in monetary nationalism, although the proposition is arguable at best, the belief that nation states should be in control of their own currencies has existed for thousands of years, predating the time of Christ and the Roman Empire that came before.
Records on cuneiform clay tablets have been discovered that date back over 5000 years to ancient Sumeria, Babylon, and Egypt; all record the use of gold and silver money, banking, loans, inheritance, deeds, real estate transactions, divorce settlements, and more.
Since the dawn of man, the human race has known that a common medium of exchange is the facilitator par excellence for promoting commerce and trade, and expanding the division of labor.
Almost all nations since the time of the ancients have had their own national currency; and invariably gold and silver were chosen as the common medium of exchange and store of wealth.
Some examples of ancient currencies of gold and silver coin are: the Sumerian Shekel, the Phoenician, Babylonian, and Lydian Stater, the Athenian Owl or Obol; and the Aureus and Solidus of the Roman Empire.
As the article The End of National Currency states:
"The historical record of national monies, going back over 2,500 years, is by and large awful." 
Thus the article acknowledges the long historical record of nation-state money. Later the issue of "awful" will be dealt with. Presently, the point is to merely establish that the history of national money is long and well known. And so it is.
Also, be it noted - the issue of a national currency and the question of whether the state has the moral high ground to issue, let alone hold title to the money, are completely separate matters, as will be explained. Suffice it to say I do not believe the state has the authority.
Also, be it noted that certain interests often use the tactic of confusing different issues of a topic to make it appear that something is happening or resulting there from, when it fact it is not.
This ploy is used because it promotes their particular agenda in a clandestine manner. Some call it deception by illusion or appearance, as things are not always as they so appear to be.
Moreover, given the fact that monetary nationalism exists, and that there may be a resulting resurgence in such belief, neither issue, when coupled with the advent of globalization, has been shown to be the precipitating cause of financial crises or geopolitical problems.
Worse yet is the mistaken supposition that such beliefs and concurrent policy have any viable part in determining whether or not national currencies should be abolished and thrown onto the monetary scrap pile of history.
Just because something exists, and its frequency of occurrence may be increasing, this alone is not sufficient reason to forsake it. Such reasoning is nothing but wishful thinking at best - thinking that alludes to hidden motives that are most likely the real source from which such cause for abandonment emanates.
Furthermore, the article recognizes that the soundest form of money is Honest Money:
"But there is another alternative, the world's most enduring form of money: gold." 
I couldn't say it any better myself. However, although these facts are mentioned, they are spun in a self-serving attempt to bolster the false proposition the article was written to promote: that national currencies should be thrown to the wind because of their nationality, and the fact that they are no longer tied to gold; a belief that is diametrically opposed to the facts quoted above when viewed in the proper perspective. For a complete discussion on Honest Money see: Honest Money: What It Is and What It Isn't - Part 2 Quality Theory of Money.
While it is true that currency crises have occurred in many countries within the last few decades: Russia, Mexico, Turkey, and Argentina to name a few, it does not follow that these crises were due to the fact that the currencies were national, as opposed to international or regional or supranational.
There is a problem with the world's currencies - granted, but it has nothing to do with being national currencies per se. It has everything to do with the nature or composition of the currencies - the fact that they are all paper fiat debt-currencies, therein resides the flaw - the weak link.
That they are no longer redeemable in gold and silver was the kiss of death to all the world's national currencies, not the mere name of the nation from which they came, although this too has its part in the play.
It is also incorrect to equate nationalism with the severing of paper money from gold backing. National currencies existed prior to the end of the gold standard. Examples are: the German Mark, the British Pound, the U.S. Dollar, the French Franc, the Austrian Ducat, and the Spanish Silver Dollar.
When gold and silver ceased to back national currencies, a devastating loss to the value of money occurred. The purchasing power of money began to steadily decline. This is known as debasement or devaluation of a currency. It was the main cause in the devolutionary process that purposefully gave rise to paper fiat debt-money.
But this is only part of the tale. The key to the story is the fact that currencies were at one time gold and silver coin - not backed by them - they were them.
As you will see in the quotes from the U.S. Constitution below, the U.S. Dollar is a specific weight of silver: 371.25 grains - the Silver Dollar.
A modern day dollar bill (Federal Reserve Note) is not the dollar mandated by the U.S. Constitution or the Coinage Act of April 2, 1792 .
A dollar bill and a dollar are two different entities. The first is a paper i.o.u.; the second is a specific weight of silver - 371.25 grains. They are as different as night is to day, as darkness is to light.
And as will be shown, any law not in pursuance of the Constitution is in fact not a law, and is null and void, as if it never occurred.
A currency backed by gold and silver, and a currency that is gold and silver coin, are two completely different monetary systems.
What is referred to as the gold standard was not the same hard money system of the Constitution.
The first is paper backed fractionally by specie - never by more then 40%, and continually decreasing over time to 20% and less, before disappearing altogether.
The latter is gold and silver coin - honest weights and measures; pure, simple, and sound. Gold and silver have been used as a store of wealth across the ages of time, because they do not loose purchasing power (value), as paper fiat debt-money does.
Further to the above is the fact that all currencies have been purposefully destroyed, or allowed to devolve, by the central bankers who were the supposed keepers of the mint, by a debasement process that spanned decades of time, one that slowly but inevitably destroyed gold and silver's reputation - as it was intended to do.
For a complete history of the devolution of the United State's monetary policy and history see the series: Honest Money, Part I: The Constitution and Honest Money.
U.S. Federal Reserve Governor Frederic Mishkin is quoted as stating that:
"Opening up the financial system to foreign capital flows has led to some disastrous financial crises causing great pain, suffering, and even violence." 
Does this mean that opening up the financial system to foreign capital flows is the cause of the problems?
Is it not possible that the structure of the currencies may be the cause of the problems, not the mere fact of allowing the currencies to flow through the global system?
If the currencies were sound, opening up the system to capital flows would be a good thing. The word currency is derived from the same root as current, as in the current of a river, the flow of the river (water) through its banks and across its riverbed.
Would opening up a river's current to irrigate farmland be disastrous? That would depend on the quality of the water in the current would it not? If the water was polluted and full of hazardous chemicals, then yes, the result would be disastrous.
If on the other hand, the current is clear mountain spring water, then the results would be good - the farmer's crops would flourish. If too much water flowed as the current through the river, then flooding would occur, having disastrous affects.
Thus the article has already assumed three false propositions:
That national currencies should be abolished solely because they are national, as opposed to the fact they are paper fiat debt-currencies, which is the true weakness - not nationality.
That opening the financial system to foreign capital flows is the cause of crises, as opposed to the structure of the paper fiat currencies that flow through the system being the cause.
That the break from gold backing was a mistaken policy perpetrated by nation-states, as opposed to a deliberate plan coldly calculated and executed by central bankers.
Ridiculous You Say
Proponents of a one world currency will say no way; it is ridiculous to state that central bankers would even think of doing such a sinister deed. Then read how the central bankers convinced Roosevelt to confiscate the people's private property of gold and silver coin that was the circulating currency at the time: Letter to Congress (click link to read article).
Ask yourself why the central bankers go against the mandates of the United States Constitution that unequivocally states:
Article I, Section 8, Clause 5 of the Constitution states: "The Congress shall have Power...To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures." 
Delegated powers of the Constitution can only be changed by due process - by a lawfully and legally passed constitutional amendment, which in regards to the above has never taken place.
Futhermore, in regards to the present system of irredeemable paper fiat deb-money known as Federal Reserve Notes, we quote from the U.S. Supreme Court during some of their more lucid moments:
"All laws which are repugnant to the Constitution are null and void." 
"An unconstitutional act is not law; it confers no rights; it imposes no duties; affords no protection; it creates no office; it is in legal contemplation, as inoperative as though it had never been passed." 
"The general rule is that an unconstitutional statute, though having the form and name of law, is in reality no law, but is wholly void and ineffective for any purpose; since unconstitutionality dates from the time of its enactment, and not merely from the date of the decision so branding it. No one is bound to obey an unconstitutional law and no courts are bound to enforce it." 
Continuing along with the article we read:
"In fact, capital flows became destabilizing only after countries began asserting 'sovereignty' over money -- detaching it from gold or anything else considered real wealth." 
Is this true? Are capital flows destabilizing because a country asserts sovereignty over money, or is it the fact that the currencies have been severed from their previous backing of gold and silver?
And just who was responsible for breaking away from the hard currency of silver and gold coin, as mandated in the U.S. Constitution, and later from what came to be known as the gold standard? Was it the government or the banker's doing?
Who pushed for central banking - governments or the elite international bankers?
Who wrote the U.S. Federal Reserve Act - Paul Warburg of the German international banking House of Warburg, or the U.S. government?
Who wrote the by-laws of the International Monetary Fund, one of which disallows and prohibits any member nation from having a currency backed by gold; was it a government or a group of elite international collectivists?
And this holds true for all the central banks around the world, all of whom were established by various elite international banking houses. Cui Bono?
There is, however, collusion between the central banks and various governments, otherwise the banks would not be allowed to peddle debt-obligations as money; and the governments would not be able to run fiscal deficits. One hand washes the other, as they say; and very dirty hands at that. Pontius Pilot would feel right at home.
The last paper in our series on the New World Order, The New World Order and The Constitution of the United States, shows that the International Monetary Fund is an enabler for the continuation of the present day paper fiat system of irredeemable debt-money, as one of its by-laws states that no member of the IMF can have a gold backed currency.
As the above referenced paper illustrates, the IMF does dictate draconian measures that financially strapped countries find austere, if not impossible to meet. We agree completely with Mr. Stiglitz when he says:
"Countries are effectively told that if they don't follow certain conditions, the capital markets or the IMF will refuse to lend them money, they are basically forced to give up part of their sovereignty." 
Restoring the lost sovereignty to a nation will not put an end to financial instability. Nationalism has nothing to do with the problem at hand.
The problem is the nature of the currency itself - the fact that it is a paper fiat currency of debt-money, no longer tied to silver and gold in any way, shape, or form.
There is presently nothing backing the currencies of the world except hollow promises to pay. And it is the central banks and the elite international collectivists who have fostered this false pretense upon the world, all in the pursuit of lucre - a lust that will never be fulfilled, a want never to be satiated.
Black is White
Although global trade for goods and services is presently being conducted with paper fiat debt-money, promoting the furtherance of globalization, this does not in and of itself prove that Polanyi was wrong for considering such monetary policy to be nonsensical.
Once again spin is used to make an incorrect assumption appear valid. Later in the article a quote by Mr. Jacques Rueff makes essentially the same point that Mr. Polanyi states, which is strongly disagreed with, yet later Mr. Rueff's viewpoint is agreed with, as at the time it was more convenient and advantageous to promote the raison d'etre of the article. The article states:
"Four decades ago, the renowned French economist Jacques Rueff, writing just a few years before the collapse of the Bretton Woods dollar-based gold-exchange standard, argued that the system 'attains such a degree of absurdity that no human brain having the power to reason can defend it.'
The precariousness of the dollar's position today is similar." 
The article employs the old ruse of playing both sides off against the other, at least while attempting to disperse its hollow monetary theory and resulting collectivist system upon the unwary host.
The above is one of several instances where the same position on important subjects is spun to defend opposing conclusions.
Yen Carry Trade
For example, on another critical topic it is stated:
"Borrowing in low-cost yen to finance investments in Europe while hedging against the yen's rise on a U.S. futures exchange is no longer exotic. Thus, unrestricted and efficient access to this global system -- rather than the ability of governments to manipulate parochial monetary policies -- has become essential for future economic development." 
The borrowing in low-cost yen being referred to is known as the yen carry trade. This is when investors or speculators borrow yen because it has the lowest interest rate in the world (1/2%), and then use the borrowed money to invest in assets or financial vehicles yielding a larger rate of interest, thus easily pocketing the spread (profit) between the two rates.
As shown in many papers I have written, The Dismal Science of Phony Money - A Rejoinder, profligate creation of paper fiat debt-money, and or credit, leads to monetary inflation.
The monetary inflation then seeks a place to call home - either resulting in asset bubbles, general pricing of goods and services bubbles, or wage inflation - or any combination thereof.
It is this exact type of false and incorrect monetary policy that allows debt to circulate as the currency that has caused the many financial meltdowns mentioned.
It is the same absurd policy that both Mr. Rueff and Mr. Polyani said was utter nonsense and could not and would not last.
It is the same sinister policy that has caused the U.S. dollar to loose 95% of its purchasing power since the Fed took control in 1913.
It is the same policy that has caused the United States to go from being the world's largest creditor nation to the world's largest debtor nation.
This is not progress for the American people, or the people of the world - it is wealth transference to the elite few who control the money, from the majority who do not.
Notwithstanding, the author unconscionably pontificates the accolades for paper fiat debt-money, heralding it to be the cats meow for the global financial system, and audaciously offers a blue-print for an international monetary system based thereon:
"A future pan-Asian currency, managed according to the same principle of targeting low and stable inflation, would represent the most promising way for China to fully liberalize its financial and capital markets without fear of damaging renminbi speculation (the Chinese economy is only the size of California's and Florida's combined). Most of the world's smaller and poorer countries would clearly be best off unilaterally adopting the dollar or the euro, which would enable their safe and rapid integration into global financial markets. Latin American countries should dollarize; eastern European countries and Turkey euroize. Broadly speaking, this prescription follows from relative trade flows, but there are exceptions; Argentina, for example, does more eurozone than U.S. trade, but Argentines think and save in dollars." 
And remember, this is after having previously stated that: "The precariousness of the dollar's position today is similar." Then why in god's name posit such a precarious paper fiat debt currency as the basis for a global monetary system - it is nonsensical at best and sinister at worst.
The end result is three world currencies: the dollar, the euro, and a pan-Asian currency. Those familiar with my work know I have said for years that the elite statist's first goal is for three international regions and three international regional currencies; then down to two; and finally down to one - a new world currency for a one world government of their New World Order.
Yet besides extolling the virtues of paper fiat debt-money, the article also makes a case for gold - or does it?
"A new gold-based international monetary system surely sounds far-fetched. But so, in 1900, did a monetary system without gold. Modern technology makes a revival of gold money, through private gold banks, possible even without government support." 
I agree that gold and silver coin is the best monetary system that any nation could choose to implement. I also agree that the money power should be in the hands of the people. See: Honest Money: What It Is and What It Isn't - Part 6 The Money Power
However, it is up to the individual countries and the people of those countries to so choose. International and supranational organizations have no authority or right to dictate monetary policy to a sovereign nation. Neither does a nation-state have the right to dictate monetary policy to a sovereign people. The money power belongs to the people.
The individual is sovereign. Governments exist only to protect the unalienable rights of the sovereign individual - to serve the people. Constitutions, laws, and treaties are but tools to facilitate the protection of the rights of the sovereign individual.
Only socialistic governments place the state before the people. In a free Republic, the individual comes first, the Constitution second, the state last. The state was created to serve the people, not vice versa.
No one or any body politic has the sovereign right to interfere with what the people of a nation so choose; such is what is meant by unalienable rights of freedom and liberty.
After extolling the virtues of gold as a sound medium of exchange, suddenly paper fiat is tossed back upon center stage. It is difficult to apprehend the reason and motive here: is it the inability to make a definitive final decision between the two, or perhaps gold was only mentioned to make it appear that a level playing field was being offered, while the real goal had always been a trilateral regional currency system - the forerunner of a one world currency of paper fiat debt-money. The conclusion offered is:
"Since economic development outside the process of globalization is no longer possible, countries should abandon monetary nationalism. Governments should replace national currencies with the dollar or the euro or, in the case of Asia, collaborate to produce a new multinational currency over a comparably large and economically diversified area." 
So, although gold is mentioned, it is not in the final analysis the system of preference - paper fiat is. Once again we see the Hegelian Dialectic at work: thesis and antithesis poised against one another, with the chosen synthesis then revealed. Yet the choice had been made long before the alternatives were revealed. It is a clever ruse, but nothing more. And the band continues on with the same old song.
"It is only since 1971, when President Richard Nixon formally untethered the dollar from gold that monies flowing around the globe have ceased to be claims on anything real. All the world's currencies are now pure manifestations of sovereignty conjured by governments. And the vast majority of such monies are unwanted: people are unwilling to hold them as wealth, something that will buy in the future at least what it did in the past. Governments can force their citizens to hold national money by requiring its use in transactions with the state, but foreigners, who are not thus compelled, will choose not to do so." 
Who is responsible for, and what is the true reason why all world currencies have ceased to be based on anything of real substance?
While it is true that paper fiat is not a store of wealth, and that it fails to provide the same purchasing power in the future, as it does in the present; it does not follow that the nationality of any given world currency is the direct cause of its unsound state as a store of wealth, and its ever-diminishing acceptance as a viable medium of exchange.
It must be remembered that paper fiat debt-money was fostered upon the world by the elite international bankers who created central banking for the express purpose of providing an expandable monetary supply, supposedly to stop runs on banks and resulting depressions due to the loss of confidence in paper money.
Yet as shown, the world has been witness to multiple currency crises ever since the unholy trinity of paper fiat, fractional reserve lending, and central banking were delivered upon the people of the world.
To discover the reason why all world currencies have ceased to be based on anything real, it is paramount to look at the end result of such a policy, and to see who or what benefits there from.
We The People who use paper fiat debt-money do not gain thereby, as the U.S. Federal Reserve Note (dollar bill) has lost 95% of its purchasing power since the Fed took control in 1913.
Not only do we not gain - we are losing wealth (purchasing power) at an ungodly rate.
When the national debt is allowed to circulate as the currency of the land, the wealth of the working man is thereby lost, transferred from those who use the debased money, to those who control its issue - the elite international bankers of the world - the global collectivists - they who collect the interest on the debt: the moneychangers Christ was so fond of.
It did not and does not occur by happenchance, as the article under review exemplifies; all was carefully orchestrated by very bright individuals, and gradually but unceasingly implemented, over decades of history, and the passage of time soon forgotten.
Why then choose such a paper fiat system as the cure for its own self-created disease? It is no different then telling a junkie to take another, yet stronger dose of dope to make himself feel better. Such a short term fix will obtain but it will not endure - for the host will eventually die from either an overdose, or chronic self-deterioration within. The writing was on the wall before the wall was put up.
The last sentence of the above quote is hauntingly insightful. It reads:
"Governments can force their citizens to hold national money by requiring its use in transactions with the state, but foreigners, who are not thus compelled, will choose not to do so." 
Central bankers are in collusion with governments to provide debt based money as a means of wealth transference. Legal tender is one of the means employed to compel the people to use what would otherwise be recognized by any rational process of reasoning to be absurd: the use of paper fiat debt-money as a means to discharge debt.
How can debt be used to pay off debt? It is beyond absurd.
Legal tender is but the royal prerogative and decree of the King, as to what the state will accept (allow or give permission) to be used as the currency of the realm. It is forced abeyance that is enforced by the legal, police, and military force of the state. It is not the workings of a free market. See Legal Tender for a detailed discussion.
And what is the difference between legal tender laws of a national origin, as opposed to legal tender laws of a multinational origin - of a system of governance composed of three global regions or zones? It is still paper fiat debt-money being fostered upon the people by an elite select group, albeit reduced to three such currencies.
Cui Bono - who benefits by such device, the people who use the currency, or the masters who control and create the currency - they who collect the interest? Might they have a vested interest?
The true goal is finally exposed near the end of the article, although it could be seen coming from the very first sentence of the paper, as that which is, is yet to come.
It has been repeatedly stated throughout The End of National Currency that profligate issuance of worthless national currencies, no longer backed by gold, has been the reason for the world's financial and monetary problems.
Yet such is what is then proposed as the cure for the disease, although reduced to only three such currencies, with the onus still placed upon the supposedly almighty U.S. dollar - the world's reserve currency.
"It is often argued that dollarization is only feasible for small countries. No doubt, smallness makes for a simpler transition. But even Brazil's economy is less than half the size of California's, and the U.S. Federal Reserve could accommodate the increased demand for dollars painlessly (and profitably) without in any way sacrificing its commitment to U.S. domestic price stability." 
Suddenly, the U.S. has no problem creating even more paper fiat debt-money then it presently does. Other nation's money supply is seen to be a mere drop in the bucket - no big deal: a few billion here and a few billion there, and my how the people will jump with joy playing with their newfound toys.
But who really owns the toys - those who own the debt; or those to whom the debt is owed?
Who can foreclose and confiscate property - We The People or the elite bankers?
Who holds title to what is supposedly private property?
Is there allodial title to property anymore? Why not?
The Raison d'etre
And finally the punch line - the coup d'etat:
"To get dollars, dollarizing countries give the Federal Reserve interest-bearing assets, such as Treasury bonds, which the United States would otherwise have to pay interest on." 
Whoa - what just slid by? Let's pull the deed apart - piece by piece, to see exactly what we've caught.
Countries need to get dollars. Such countries are referred to as dollarizing countries, who give the Federal Reserve interest-bearing assets, such as Treasury bonds.
Treasury bonds that the United States would otherwise have to pay interest on. Slick, very slick - of that there is no doubt.
The Mandrake System
As it now stands, the Federal Reserve creates money out of thin air - this is the meaning of fiat: spoken into existence. The illusion used to try to obfuscate the sinister deed is that the Treasury first issues bonds that are then sold to the Fed.
The Fed takes newly created dollars (by writing a check for the dollars that do not exist anywhere in their own accounts in any real sense but only as computer entries) and uses them in payment for the Treasury bonds.
The government takes the newly created fiat dollars (Fed's check or digital computer entries) received as payment for the bonds from the Fed to the Treasury, and places (deposits) them in the U.S. general account. They are then used to pay for various services and goods the government procures.
The vendors and workers that receive these dollars in payment from the government then take the money and deposit it into their individual commercial bank accounts.
The commercial banks, through the miracle of fractional reserve lending, begin the process of loaning out 9 times the money deposited on reserve by the commercial customers, who received the money from the government, who in turn received it from the Fed, who in turn created it out of nothing - by simply writing a check to the Treasury.
Now you know why Mr. Polyani and Mr. Reuff thought the scheme to be a bit far fetched and nonsensical - one that any sane, rational human being would be unable to make any sense of: cents yes - sense no. It is a most unholy alliance.
Raise the Stakes
Yet Mr. Steil wants to bump it up a notch or two: by convincing the world that the best course of action for global finance is to implement three international regional currencies.
Now a new demand or need for U.S. dollars would be created, and of course increased demand requires an increase supply.
The mechanism to be used by the dollarizing countries to obtain all these new dollars (supply) has been carefully thought out and planned - well ahead of time.
Dollarizing countries would simply sell their existing holdings of U.S. Treasury bonds back to the United States, for payment in U.S. dollars, thereby saving the U.S. from having to pay the interest on the bonds.
The wizards of finance have gone from monetizing the debt (Treasury bonds) with other debt obligations (Federal Reserve Notes), to now buying back the same monetized debt (T-bonds), paid for with the self-same dollars that were created by the issuance of the original Treasury debt, thus relieving the government from having to pay the interest on the debt (government bonds).
This is what is meant by "dollarization". The question is: who benefits here - We The People who use the currency, or the elite international bankers who devise and control all the monetary schemes as a means of wealth transference?
Click here to read the true deficiencies of paper fiat debt-money: Honest Money: What It Is and What It Isn't - Part 7 Problems With Debt Money.
And remember the article said that the Nobel laureate Mr. Joseph Stiglitz was incorrect when stating that:
"Countries are effectively told that if they don't follow certain conditions, the capital markets or the IMF will refuse to lend them money." 
Perhaps the author of the article under review is correct with his previously mentioned assertion on Mr. Stiglitz's position on the IMF, although I beg to differ; and I agree with Mr. Stiglitz. The following quote leaves no doubt where the author stands.
"Of course, dollarizing countries must give up independent monetary policy as a tool of government macroeconomic management." 
It doesn't get much clearer than that. That is elite statism pure and simple, the forced abeyance to a supranational global monetary policy dictated by a select few, resulting in the break down of national sovereignty in the pursuit of one world governance and the implementation of a New World Order.
And all that is required of the United States to do is:
"As for the United States, it needs to perpetuate the sound money policies of former Federal Reserve Chairs Paul Volcker and Alan Greenspan and return to long-term fiscal discipline." 
If ever a statement was made that was nonsensical and alien to any rational thinking mind - this statement is it. If the issue was not of such grave importance it would be comical.
First, Paul Volcker did much of the behind the scenes work that enabled President Nixon to repudiate the gold standard - reneging on all contractual obligations to pay our foreign trade accounts with gold.
Two, Mr. Volcker wasn't in the Holy Grail Seminary of lower interest rates revered at the beginning of the paper under review and by its author. It seems Mr. Volcker had to resort to the banana republic defense of the currency with extremely high interest rates that the article touts is such a negative, at least when others resort to it.
As for Alan Greenspan, Mr. Steil most be joking, as the good doctor created more debt on his watch then all the other Federal Reserve Chairman before him did collectively.
If such malfeasance is sound monetary policy then the article writes its own epitaph, as the preposterous monetary policy it offers is only rivaled by those of Sir Alan - the maestro of monetary inflation and dean of debasement of the currency, unparalleled and without equal in the cosmos, at least until now.
We suggest that Mr. Steil read Mr. Greenspan's, Gold and Economic Freedom (1966), which was written before Sir Alan had his anti-epiphany, and take note of the following part:
"In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value. If there were, the government would have to make its holding illegal, as was done in the case of gold. If everyone decided, for example, to convert all his bank deposits to silver, copper, or any other good, and thereafter declined to accept checks as payment for goods, bank deposits would lose their purchasing power and government-created bank credit would be worthless as a claim on goods. The financial policy of the welfare state requires that there be no way for the owners of wealth to protect themselves.
This is the shabby secret of the welfare statists' tirades against gold. Deficit spending is simply a scheme for the confiscation of wealth. Gold stands in the way of this insidious process. It stands as a protector of property rights. If one grasps this, one has no difficulty in understanding the statists' antagonism toward the gold standard." 
Or he could read and put into practice what he himself has written and espoused on the gospel according to currency destruction:
"This is what makes capital flows, however necessary, dangerous: in a developing country, both locals and foreigners will sell off the local currency en masse at the earliest whiff of devaluation, since devaluation makes it more difficult for the country to pay its foreign debts -- hence the dangerous instability of today's international financial system." 
So, "devaluation makes it difficult for a country to pay its foreign debts - hence the dangerous instability of today's international financial system." True - very true, but let's complete the riddle by filling in the gaps.
What currency has lost 95% of its purchasing power (devaluation) since the central bank that goes by the name of the Federal Reserve was put in charge - the U.S. Dollar Bill or Federal Reserve Note.
What currency's devaluation has caused it to go from being the largest creditor nation in the world to the largest debtor nation - the U.S. Dollar Bill or Federal Reserve Note.
What hard currency of gold and silver was confiscated by the government per the recommendation of the central bank known as the Federal Reserve and replaced with paper money - the U.S. currency mandated by the U.S. Constitution.
What currency was sworn to be redeemed in gold to foreign countries only to have such obligations defaulted on - the U.S. currency under the watchful eye of the Federal Reserve.
Is there a pattern here? And if so, is it one of monetary soundness and responsibility, or a complete lack thereof?
Could you run your business this way and not go bankrupt? Well of course you could - if you could print your own money, devaluing it even further in the process.
So the answer to the riddle as to what currency ranks at the top of the junk pile of paper fiat debt-money is the U.S. Dollar Bill or Federal Reserve Note; the currency Mr. Steil recommends as the anchor of his international monetary system - interesting to say the least.
No monetary system that allows the national debt to circulate as the currency has any possible chance of succeeding except in its own self-destruction.
Inflation is inherent within its genetic makeup, forever doomed to a never-ending cycle of ever-increasing money, credit, and debt creation.
Debt cannot pay off debt. A system that allows this sophistry to exist is simply creating more and more debt - debt that our sons and daughters and their sons and daughter will be servicing (paying the interest on) long into the future - never mind ever paying the debt off.
Debt payment is a mathematical impossibility. The servicing of the debt is a pernicious form of prostitution, whereby the future is sold for the present - our son's and daughter's future, condemning them to a life of debt servitude.
Only the elite at the top of the food chain profit by such a system of wealth transference - they who collect the interest rate stream - the moneychangers Christ turned the tables on.
The only possible sound solution is a return to Honest Money - gold and silver coin that is no one's debt or obligation; money that is the same hard currency system that the United States Constitution mandates - the same gold and silver coin Roosevelt confiscated from We The People under false pretense and not in pursuance of the Constitution, yeah it was done in defiance of the Constitution.
Yet Congress either does not know, or chooses to ignore that such is the case. Ignorance of the Supreme Law of the Land is no excuse, especially when one's sworn oath of office is to defend and abide by the Constitution.
To break one's oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution is to break one's contract to represent We The People, and to forsake any semblance of trustworthiness - this is the least repercussion; the worst case we leave for the reader and constitutional law scholars to judge - although the result is quite obvious.
It is time for We The People to demand more from our representatives, to demand that they adhere to the Constitution of the United States, that they defend the unalienable rights of the people they have sworn to represent and serve - you and your loved ones, families and friends, neighbors and fellow human beings.
We The People are sovereign. The Constitution comes next. The state comes last, its sole job being to implement the delegated powers of the Constitution, as ordained by the people in order to defend, protect, and insure the unalienable rights of the Sovereign People.
The time has come; the time is now - before it is too late.
Time stops for no man, but man can do that which time can not.
For when the perfect comes, the imperfect shall cease to be.
So has it been written, so has it been said, so shall it be, so it is.
"Bankers own the earth. Take it away from them, but leave
them the power to create money and control credit, and with a flick of
a pen they will create enough to buy it back." 
 The End of National Currency
 US Constitution
 as above
 Marbury vs. Madison, 5 US 137, 174, 176 (1803)
 Norton vs. Shelby County, 118, US 425 p. 442
 16 Am Jur 2d, Sec. 177, late 2d, Sec 256
 The End of National Currency
 Joseph Stiglitz as quoted in The End of National Currency
 The End of National Currency
 Alan Greenspan, Gold and Economic Freedom (1966)
 The End of National Currency>
 Sir Josiah Stamp, former President, Bank of England