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#142347 - 07/31/08 01:46 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: AROTC]
Kart29 Offline
Stranger

Registered: 07/17/08
Posts: 19
Loc: Indiana
Originally Posted By: AROTC
I also don't see that a small, let me make that clear, small supply of precious metal or something else that concentrates lots of value into a small and universally accepted form is a bad idea. For something truly important, a life or limb saving antibiotic for instance, run of the mill items will not be enough to sway a person.

Likewise, ten tenth ounce Krugerrands would be a way to carry a substantial amount of wealth in an easily transported and concealed form. For people who say gold or silver will be worthless after a large scale disaster I say BS. In the worst circumstances of history gold has proven to continue to be coveted by most, though admittedly not all, people. War zones are one example. I'm not saying everyone should go out and buy Krugerrands to sell in a disaster, but I wouldn't discount the idea to rapidly.



I completely agree. It is possible, and has happened in the past, that a nation's currency becomes totally worthless. Stocks and bonds are merely pieces of paper that are only worth what someone else will pay for them. Precious metals may not be great long-term investments, and they may not be worth much in the midst of social chaos and upheaval. But, the value of gold, silver, copper, etc. WILL survive! Eventually when the disaster is over and some sort of order emerges, gold and silver will still retain some value while your mutual fund may have long ago disappeared into smoke. I doubt your silver dollars are going to do you much good five days after a hurricane or major earthquake. But, in the event of a long-term depression or economic collapse (brought about by whatever reason) the intrinsic value of gold and silver will remain as a means of holding and transferring economic value.

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#142354 - 07/31/08 02:21 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: Kart29]
thseng Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/24/06
Posts: 900
Loc: NW NJ
Originally Posted By: Kart29
Stocks and bonds are merely pieces of paper that are only worth what someone else will pay for them.
...
the intrinsic value of gold and silver will remain as a means of holding and transferring economic value.

Minor nitpick: Nothing material has intrinsic value. Everything is only worth what someone will pay you for it.

_________________________
- Tom S.

"Never trust and engineer who doesn't carry a pocketknife."

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#142360 - 07/31/08 03:08 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: thseng]
Kart29 Offline
Stranger

Registered: 07/17/08
Posts: 19
Loc: Indiana
Okay, I think you are right about everything being worth what someone will pay you for it. Even items with an intrinsic value, that value is subject to change based on other people's desire for it.

But precious metals do have an intrinsic value. They have value because of their inherent utility and resistance to decay. Precious metals are valued because of the substance's natural properties. Modern currencies and other forms of paper wealth hold value ONLY because of the external value placed on them by others - not because of any properties within the bills themselves. It is this distinction that I intended to highlight.

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#142372 - 07/31/08 04:15 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: Kart29]
thseng Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/24/06
Posts: 900
Loc: NW NJ
Originally Posted By: Kart29
They have value because of their inherent utility and resistance to decay. Precious metals are valued because of the substance's natural properties.

I dunno. Gold is pretty and resistant to corrosion, but is it really THAT valuable? I think it is only considered valuable because it is useful, resistant to decay and scarse.

Kingdoms of old didn't seek gold so that they could make pretty things for the queen or weapons or food.

No one dreams of striking a huge deposit of gold on his land so that he can make things out of it.

Originally Posted By: Kart29
Modern currencies and other forms of paper wealth hold value ONLY because of the external value placed on them by others - not because of any properties within the bills themselves.

I guess I can agree with that. Absent its value as legal tender, a dollar bill has only the value of an durable piece of paper that has already been written on. On the other hand, a dollar gold coin is a piece of metal that might be useful or might be valued again some day.
_________________________
- Tom S.

"Never trust and engineer who doesn't carry a pocketknife."

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#142399 - 07/31/08 10:06 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: thseng]
AROTC Offline
Addict

Registered: 05/06/04
Posts: 604
Loc: Manhattan
I agree that gold is a strong value holder in extreme depressions. Thats why central banks and official organizations still hold about 20% of all mined gold as a reserve. However, I was thinking of gold as a more immediate tool. Even in not so major disasters, carrying gold or silver could be useful. Someone here mentioned making payment with a silver coin on a trip overseas. The circumstances were unusual, but not completely bizarre. Gold and silver also have the useful property of being hard to spend in normal times. You aren't going to decide to spend your bug out money unless you have to spend it.

Again, I'm not advocating hoarding large amounts of gold. However, I already keep a couple hundred dollars in emergency cash, why not split that half cash, half in fractions of ounce weights of gold or ounces of silver. Tenth and twentieth ounce Krugerrands are available. Which translates to 80-100 dollar and 40-50 dollar values respectively. I think a lot of people think they'd have to buy full ounces or more which is prohibitively expensive (800-900 dollars) and impossible to use to buy pretty much anything with. I personally think American silver eagles (.999 pure silver 1 ounce coins) and 1/10 ounce Krugerrands would be ideal. Easy to carry, easy to store, easy to hide, easy to sell. It would be a hedge against cash not being accepted and against having to buy something absolutely vital to survival.

Here's a website with a little more information on the subject: http://www.cmi-gold-silver.com/small-survival-gold-silver-coins.html

And unlike a closet full of diapers, you can always sell your gold and silver when you're sixty and buy a fishing boat.

Addendum: Trading is also something I see being a better option if you're on the the move. I can't see you inviting people to your home and offering things to trade. But I can see knocking on someones door and asking if they have something they'd be willing to trade to you. From that perspective precious metals are good idea for a bug out bag. Ten twentieth-ounce gold coins can buy a lot of good will for a traveler. That's less then an ounce added to your pack weight, but it could reward you more then a similar weight of any other tool.


Edited by AROTC (07/31/08 10:19 PM)
_________________________
A gentleman should always be able to break his fast in the manner of a gentleman where so ever he may find himself.--Good Omens

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#142431 - 08/01/08 02:50 AM Re: Diapers? [Re: AROTC]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Originally Posted By: AROTC
Ten twentieth-ounce gold coins can buy a lot of good will for a traveler. That's less then an ounce added to your pack weight, but it could reward you more then a similar weight of any other tool.


Show up on my doorstep with little slips of what you say is gold, and 14K gold at that, and I will value it as I would any fishing sinker. Show up with what you say are silver coins and I will give you the face value.

It would be imprudent to do otherwise. Because, in the end, how do I know it is really gold. There are several modern metals that look remarkably like gold. How do I know it is 14K gold and not 10k? How do I know the current market value of gold I communications are down? For all I know gold went to $10 last night.

Some testing shows that presently a lot of the jewelry getting sold as high concentration gold are much less pure than marked. A very old trick that is hard to detect even in peaceful and well ordered times. People get desperate and you can be assured frauds will proliferate.

All that is even more true of silver where look-alike materials are more common and both testing and purity is harder to check.

A metals dealer can effectively test what your offering to make sure it is what you say it is and the purity marked. They have the test kit (appropriate reagent, scratch stone and comparison needles) and can draw strong conclusions. I would be guessing. So, to protect my investment and material goods, I would give you a much lesser fall back offer. Take it or leave it.

Of course buying precious metals has been pushed hard by people dealing in, or invested in, such materials. Which raises the price and becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy of increasing price. This is not much different than real estate. The truth of markets is that everything it worth what someone will give you for it.

I wouldn't be sure what your offering is what you say it is. And even then I really have no real direct and practical use for gold. So the price I'm willing to pay will be quite low.

Like travelers in hard times before noted you may be better off offering your labor and/or skill set to get what you need.

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#142436 - 08/01/08 03:24 AM Re: Diapers? [Re: Art_in_FL]
wildman800 Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 2818
Loc: La-USA
I prefer silver rounds. They are 1 troy ounce of .99pct pure silver and those specs are stamped onto each coin. When I buy them, I pay the current price for an ounce of silver plus a $1.50 handling fee per round to the coin dealer.

I try to purchase 1 oz per payday. In reality though, I don't/can't be at the store every payday. I watch the price of silver and when it has dropped, I will go then and buy several rounds vs buying it as it is hitting a new high.

I don't have much nor do I intend to ever have very much on hand, but I may have sufficient amounts to get me through a rough time when it matters. I am not buying silver as an investment to make money but as an extra option in an emergency situation.
_________________________
QMC, USCG (Ret)
The best luck is what you make yourself!

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#142483 - 08/01/08 02:35 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: Art_in_FL]
AROTC Offline
Addict

Registered: 05/06/04
Posts: 604
Loc: Manhattan
Well, thats an opinion. I just offer gold or silver as the most dense and durable type of trade good you could have. Far better then diapers I think.

Quote:
I think that if your preparing a fairly comprehensive supply base and your staying put, so weight and bulk aren't an issue, that a supply of diapers would have a place. I don't see carrying lots of sizes. I would invest in a good supply of mid-range disposables that do not use gels or other super-absorbents that mat degrade in time just to get people over the first few days. Smaller and larger children would have to make due with creative taping, pins and other field modifications.


Quote:
To avoid any resentments, legal issues these types of supplies would be given away or, at worse, traded on a sliding scale system according to means. People with things to trade don't get them all and those with nothing to trade are not excluded.


Gold neatly bypasses any possible resentment or legal issues. No one needs gold, they aren't going to come to you begging for it as a supply so you don't have to worry about becoming a charity...if you don't want to.

Travelers in the worst collapses in history didn't offer work to get what they wanted. They took it by force. Or they bought it, with gold. Thats what happened after the fall of the Roman Empire. In prisoner of war camps trade continues and what is valued most is gold and jewels. Name a war with large numbers of prisoners (The civil war, world war two) and its the same.

Finally, I'd reiterate that their most useful place would be in a bug out kit where you're moving and can't possibly carry all the supplies you'd ever want. You could offer skills in trade, but if you have to do that at every stop you might as well put down roots because you'll never get anywhere. And even if the price of gold drops to ten dollars, how far do you think the value of paper dollars will fall.

If someone doesn't want it, or refuses to give what you believe is a fair price...simply walk down the road. You get what you want, or you have to adjust what you think is a fair price. But it gives you options, lots of options that nothing else weighing less then an ounce can. Gold is and has been universal all over the world as being synonymous with money throughout history, I can't see that changing anytime soon.
_________________________
A gentleman should always be able to break his fast in the manner of a gentleman where so ever he may find himself.--Good Omens

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#142489 - 08/01/08 03:33 PM Re: Diapers? [Re: wildman800]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
For those following the discussion about precious metals and otherwise interested I have opened another thread specifically to cover the subject. It can be found in this section under the title: "Precious metals?".



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