Saturday, January 4, 2014

Copernicus on the "Minting of Money" and Other Things

“If we value the freedom of mind and soul, if we're partisans of liberty, then it's our plain duty to escape, and to take as many people with us as we can!” ― J.R.R. Tolkien

From Wikipedia:

"Monetae cudendae ratio (also spelled Monetæ cudendæ ratio; English: On the Minting of Coin or On the Striking of Coin; sometimes, Treatise on Money) is a paper on coinage by Nicolaus Copernicus (Polish: Mikołaj Kopernik). It was written in 1526 at the request of Sigismund I the Old, King of Poland, and presented to the Prussian Diet.

"Copernicus' earliest draft of his essay in 1517 was entitled De aestimatione monetae (On the Value of Coin). He revised his original notes, while at Olsztyn (Allenstein) in 1519 (which he defended against the Teutonic Knights), as Tractatus de monetis (Treatise on Coin) and Modus cudendi monetam (The Way to Strike Coin). He made these the basis of a report which he presented to the Prussian Diet at Grudziądz (Graudenz) in 1522; Copernicus' friend Tiedemann Giese accompanied him on the trip to Graudenz.[3] For the 1528 Prussian Diet, Copernicus wrote an expanded version of this paper, Monetae cudendae ratio (On the Minting of Coin), setting forth a general theory of money.

In the paper, Copernicus postulated the principle that "bad money drives out good", which later came to be referred to as Gresham's Law after a later describer, Sir Thomas Gresham. This phenomenon had been noted earlier by Nicole Oresme, but Copernicus rediscovered it independently. Gresham's Law is still known in Poland and Central and Eastern Europe as the Copernicus-Gresham Law.

In the same work, Copernicus also formulated an early version of the quantity theory of money, or the relation between a stock of money, its velocity, its price level, and the output of an economy. Like many later classical economists of the 18th and 19th centuries, he focused on the connection between increased money supply and inflation.

Monetae cudendae ratio also draws a distinction between the use value and exchange value of commodities, anticipating by some 250 years the use of these concepts by Adam Smith — although it, too, had antecedents in earlier writers, including Aristotle.

Copernicus' essay was republished in 1816 in the Polish capital, Warsaw, as Dissertatio de optima monetae cudendae ratione (Dissertation on the Optimal Minting of Coin), few copies of which survive."

I found the most interesting paragraph in Copernicus' essay to be this one:

"Although there are countless maladies that are forever causing the decline of kingdoms, princedoms, and republics, the following four (in my judgment) are the most serious: civil discord, a high death rate, sterility of the soil, and the debasement of coinage. The first three are so obvious that everybody recognizes the damage they cause; but the fourth one, which has to do with money, is noticed by only a few very thoughtful people, since it does not operate all at once and at a single blow, but gradually overthrows governments, and in a hidden, insidious way.

We are suffering from all four of them right now. We've got civil discord in many wars: a war between the races, essentially a war between men and women, a high death rate (which means births are going down and people are not reproducing, and debasement of the coinage, in our case, by the thoroughly unconstitutional and illegal Federal Reserve Bank. Then our food is being poisoned by various Cosmodemonic Transnational Megacorporations, including, now, importing various poisons from China.

I'm half-dismayed, half-amazed, by what I am seeing. Every problem we have today, people had in the past. We have the answers, and have had them for a long time, and yet people never learn until it's too late. Then we have to pick up and start over.

We can blame leftists or the State or whatever, but ultimately it's our fault. I suppose, really, it's because the smart and knowledgeable or outgunned by the stupid and ignorant. It's a hell of a problem. Always has been, and always will be.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Part of the blame lies with the school system. It makes all the lessons (including history) so boring and frustrating that children learn to hate knowlege and learning.