A couple of days ago, Ylan Q. Mui at the Washington Post wrote a curious article, Virginia Coin Moves Closer to Reality. I say “curious” because she takes this threat seriously. And this is just plain crazy: every bit as crazy as secession and a whole lot more crazy than requiring ultrasounds before allowing abortions.
The push is coming from Robert G. Marshall, a Republican member of the Virginia House of Delegates. And he is just brimming over with fatuous statements of the libertarian “The Fed is printing money!” and “Zimbabwe, I tell you!” variety. See, for example, any speech by Ron Paul.
But the problem with the article is that there are very few direct quotes from Marshall. Instead, Mui will make an outrageous statement and then end it with, “according to Marshall.” For example, “And those are only the problems that the Fed might create. Who knows what other threats may be lurking in the shadowy world of cyberattacks, Marshall said.”
People like Marshall (and apparently also Mui) just don’t understand how the monetary system works. Value of currency is not determined by dividing the total amount of cash by the total amount of assets. If it were, then we would have already had runaway inflation as the Fed has tripled the monetary base over the last five years. Instead, we have ridiculously low (Too low!) inflation.
There are a lot of people like Robert Marshall out there in the conservative world. I tend to see them as traitors. They are always eager to see that the United States doing it all wrong. They don’t do even the most basic of research before going on tilt with their crazy ideas. But the real problem is that we have reporters like Ylan Mui and papers like the Washington Post that take cranks like Marshall seriously.