By Tyler Durden
Authored by David Stockman via The Daily Reckoning,
103 years ago, in 1914, the Federal Reserve opened-up for business as the carnage in northern France was getting under way.
And it brought to a close the prior magnificent half-century era of liberal internationalism and honest gold-backed money.
The Great War was nothing short of a calamity, especially for the 20 million combatants and civilians who perished for no reason discernible in any fair reading of history, or even unfair one.
Yet the far greater calamity is that Europe’s senseless fratricide of 1914-1918 gave birth to all the great evils of the 20th century – the Great Depression, totalitarian genocides, Keynesian economics, permanent warfare states, rampaging central banks and the follies of America’s global imperialism.
Indeed, in Old Testament fashion, one begat the next and the next and still the next.
The old liberal international economic order – honest money, relatively free trade, rising international capital flows and rapidly growing global economic integration – resulted in a 40-year span between 1870 and 1914 of rising living standards, stable prices, massive capital investment and prolific technological progress that was never equaled either before or since.
The Great War undid it all.
In the case of Great Britain, for …read more