When most people think of investing, they think of buying shares in a company or buying government bonds. These activities help to grow the economy by providing businesses and governments with capital that they can then invest and use to create jobs. But alongside these legitimate investments, a selfish form of economic abstinence is taking millions of dollars out of the economy every year, contributing to job losses, higher prices, lower quality goods, and loss of business opportunities. The activity I’m referring to is gold hoarding, which instead of providing capital to those who need it, locks this capital away where it serves no utility to anyone.
Gold hoarding locks economic value away in vaults, where it is unable to circulate and generate economic growth. This literally sucks the lifeblood out of the economy, leaving millions of people homeless and out of work, while millions of dollars sit idly by, serving no purpose other than to support the selfish needs of gold enthusiasts.
So why do people choose to hoard this shiny metal instead of investing in the economy? The answer can be found in the extreme political ideologies that these people tend to subscribe to. Gold hoarders tend to be conspiracy theorists and right-wing extremists, who believe that the Federal Reserve bank of the United States is secretly conspiring to strip them of their wealth. Many of them are also anti-Semites, and choose to boycott the entire banking system, which they see as disproportionately Jewish. Some hoarders believe that we are heading for economic Armageddon, and that gold is a means of ‘protecting their savings’ in this apocalyptic scenario. Safe to say, these beliefs are all unfounded, and incredibly bigoted.
One of the problems with our modern liberal democracy is that we are too tolerant of extreme and dangerous beliefs and subversive anti-government activities. We need to start setting boundaries determining what is and what isn’t acceptable behaviour in the 21st century. The economic effects of gold hoarding are dire, and we cannot simply stand by while millions of people are forced to endure the hardships induced by this selfishness. Gold hoarding needs to be outlawed, pure and simple. In order to buy significant quantities of gold, one should have to demonstrate a legitimate business need for this raw material, such as jewellery manufacturing or watch making. Simply owning gold for the sake of a perverted and flawed political ideology cannot be allowed in a 21st century liberal democracy.