Zimbabwe Ditches Worthless Hyperinflated Currency... for US Dollars?!
I believe I have confessed more than once to being a stat whore, mulling over all the curious IPs that appear here and there amongst the run-of-the-mill Comcast IPs of the strangers searching "Jamie Dimon is Sexy" and "Ben Bernanke is an idiot" (cheers to the second one, not surprisingly I see that particular combination or some version thereof appear quite often).
This being said, I've seen the Fed Board of Governors more than once, naturally, though I get more direct traffic from the regional Fed banks. This makes sense if you consider how badly I bag on Dr Bernanke compared with the bones I throw regional Fed bank Presidents; most notably Richmond's Lacker, Philadelphia's Plosser, and - when he isn't skeezing me out - Dallas' Fisher.
Unlike the regional Fed banks, the Fed Board of Governors probably doesn't want to know what people are saying, especially when descriptions of the Board's recent moves include words like "boneheaded," "asinine," and/or "WTF." If someone questioned my motives to the point that they implied I must be some kind of schizophrenic who stopped taking my meds, I might be reluctant to revisit such a site myself.
So we'll assume that Ben Bernanke will never see this. But, knowing that he's a smart guy under all that manic money-printing, hopefully he is all too aware of the fate of the Zimbabwe dollar and takes it as a lesson. My only fear is that Dr Bernanke's narcissism, combined with the collective narcissism of the people of the United States (does "this could never happen in America" ring a bell to you?), will lead he and the rest of his crack team of Economic Demolition Artists to plunge the dollar anyway even having heard of Zimbabwe's case.
We do not assume this as our fate, despite the hilarious Twitter account (aptly called ZimbabweBen) which makes it appear as though our friend ZB is dead set on destruction, as the United States is, of course, in a more privileged position in terms of the global economy than our friends in Zimbabwe. Sadly, this fact is not lost on the powers that be and they appear to be dead-set on manipulating it as long and as hard as they can. Taking our position for granted allowed us to arrive where we are (I don't need to remind you where we are, you're a smart kid I'm sure) and will certainly lead to a more difficult recovery later on down the road when it becomes prudent to discuss such a possibility. At this point, we need not worry about recovery. It is too early to even make educated stabs in the dark.
So this one goes out to you, Federal Reserve Board of Governors. Certainly you don't come around Jr Deputy Accountant as much as your regional counterparts but if you get one single lesson I'm trying to hand you, please let it be this one. You guys need to put down the financial crack pipe. Seriously.
I'm a few weeks late on this one, sorry. Zimbabwe has abandoned its worthless currency:
Zimbabwe's new coalition Government has decided to withdraw the country's worthless currency from circulation for at least a year and rely exclusively on other hard currencies.
Economic Planning Minister Elton Mangoma has been quoted in the state-controlled Sunday Mail newspaper as saying the Zimbabwe dollar, whose value was sent crashing by an official policy of the former regime of President Robert Mugabe to print huge volumes of cash to keep up with state spending, ''will be out at least for a year''.
''We resolved there will be no immediate plans to introduce the money because there is nothing to support its value,'' he said.
In late January, when it took 20trillion Zimbabwe dollars to equal $US1, the Government adopted international hard currencies, mostly the United States dollar and the South African rand, as legal tender alongside the local currency.
Inflation running into percentage points with 15 zeroes had made trade in Zimbabwe dollars impossible and business was already conducted predominantly in hard currencies, albeit technically illegal.
''Our focus is to ensure that we first have a vibrant industry,'' Mr Mangoma said.
''If we try to reintroduce the local currency now, it will face the same fate of being wiped out of its value within weeks.''
I hope that the hilarious irony of Zimbabwe abandoning its worthless currency for United States Dollars is not lost on you, dear reader.