Tag Archives: Economics
Psst…My Dollar Has A Secret
Beneath her cobwebby exterior and obscure, Masonic symbols, we know the dollar likes to keep things to herself. But this is too much.
I found a scary article in my email the other day. It frigtens me because it is not from a political blog, not from a left-leaning alarmist group, not from a group with any kind of alarmist bias. It was from a list-serve I am on, “Publisher’s Lunch” that is distributed to people who work in the publishing industry. Most of the stories are either “who got hired” and “big book contracts”. That’s why I was surprised to see this lead sentence:
Canada continues to grapple with the consequences of the ever-weaker US dollar.
From the article:
Prices [of books sold to bookstores] were adjusted once last fall, but as the dollar has continued to decline, that change is insufficient…The Globe and Mail reports that dominant chain Indigo plans to “imminently” pass on savings in the form of discounts or promotions. Random House Canada president Brad Martin indicates they “will give booksellers a 5-per-cent discount on U.S. books until the end of the year.” Penguin Canada will reduce prices 5 percent on their new fall books and on some backlist hits.
Ouch. Next time you pick up a book, imagine the Canadian and U.S. prices reversed to get a more realistic idea of the current value of the dollar. And that’s what its worth today. But what’s in store for the future of our currency?
Project Censored every year releases a top ten list of important stories that were buried by the corporate media. I heard on a podcast that OPEC is trading its dollars into Euros. According to the projectcensored.org site, the value of our dollar has been a big white lie, which we have been able to get away with because it is tied to the price of oil. Which works out fine for us, as long as that continues. Then it is certainly bad news to hear that “Russia, Venezuela, and some members of OPEC have expressed interest in moving towards a petroeuro system for oil transactions.”
According to the article, China is the world’s second largest holder of U.S. currency (you would think the U.S. is number one. Its Japan).
“Maintaining the U.S. as a market for their goods is a pre-eminent goal of Chinese financial policy, but they are increasingly dependent on Iran for their vital oil and gas imports…But the Chinese government has indicated interest in de-linking the dollar-yuan arrangement, which could result in an immediate fall in the dollar. More worrisome is the potentiality of China to abandon its ongoing prolific purchase of U.S. Treasuries/debtâ€”should they become displeased with U.S. policies towards Iran.”
Hmm…how can we displease China?…I know! Let’s go to war with Iran!
I kid, but this is serious busines. I’m accostomed to my currency maintaining its value. What good is the 25 dollars in interest I have earned in my savings account if the dollar itself is worth half what it once was? I don’t like to hear the words “plummet” and “dollar” in the same sentence (truly, “plummet is an unpleasant word. I don’t like to hear it in any sentence). But if you need to know how to spell “plummet” you can look it up in the Project Censored article, their right next to the word “dollar”.
This article is only ranked 9. Makes you wonder what the other, higher-ranking censored stories are, doesn’t it?
I can’t really blame the dollar for being coy. A little rouge on the cheeks, a corset under the bosom. She still wants to get into the swankiest clubs in town. And dance and dance all night. And we see her with rose-colored glasses. Beneath it all, I don’t just hope she is looking fresh tomorrow. I hope she’s still standing.