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Claudio Grass

Claudio Grass

Claudio Grass is a passionate advocate of free-market thinking and libertarian philosophy. Following the teachings of the Austrian School of Economics he is convinced that sound money and human freedom are inextricably linked to each other. He is one of the founders of GoldAndLiberty.com.

Articles by Claudio Grass

A blueprint for a European superstate

10 days ago

The EU Pandemic Relief Deal

After intense negotiations, long days and nights of clashes and a distinctly sour note underlying the entire summit, European Union leaders finally agreed on an unprecedented 1.82 trillion-euro ($2.1 trillion) budget and COVID recovery package. This agreement provided €750 billion in funding meant to counter the impact of the pandemic, while it also includes €390bn in non-repayable grants to the hardest-hit members, with Italy and Spain being the main recipients.

The harsh negotiations brought to the surface once again the deep economic, structural and cultural divide between North and South. This divide has been at the core of every serious political and economic crisis in the bloc so far and its reemergence served as yet another reminder of how

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Is the West repeating India’s mistakes? – Part II

12 days ago

Interview with Jayant Bhandari

Claudio Grass (CG): In such a vast and incredibly diverse country like India, can top-down measures and centralized policies like affirmative action or caste-based economic incentives effectively force social change and economic equality? Or can they be seen as merely symbolic moves, or perhaps just political maneuvers? 

Jayant Bhandari (JB): The government should get completely out of the business of social engineering. Even under a purely meritocratic system, India would be desperately short of leaders and competent bureaucrats. For example, India needs good doctors. Today, the best doctors emigrate, the second-best work for the Indian private sector, and those who know nothing, who usually get a certificate because of affirmative action

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Is the West repeating India’s mistakes?

17 days ago

Interview with Jayant Bhandari: Part I

Following the publication of our last conversation with Jayant Bhandari, I received a lot of interesting feedback and remarks. The common denominator of all those comments was the astonishment of many Western readers at the real conditions and dynamics on the ground in India. In fact, I was surprised myself by how little we actually know and understand about a country so vast, so populous and so potentially influential on the world’s geopolitical stage. The coverage we receive by Western media is often so superficial, ahistorical and frequently biased, that it deceives us into believing we roughly understand the politics and social problems there, when in reality we are entirely clueless. This dangerous illusion of knowledge in turn comes to

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War on poverty, or just war on the poor?

24 days ago

As the dust is now begging to settle, both from the heights of the COVID panic and from the riots that shook the western world, we are starting to get an idea about where we stand after this unprecedented and tumultuous time. We are able to begin taking stock of the damage that was inflicted by the lockdowns and to evaluate the governmental efforts to help those affected and to provide support to the economy. More interestingly, we are finally in a position to see clearly who amongst us paid the highest price, who suffered the most and whose livelihood was taken away.

This picture is especially clear in the US, where the numbers speak for themselves. One look at the unemployment figures as seen in the chart below is enough to demonstrate the extent of the damage of the economic

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The attitude should be gratitude

July 3, 2020

During these increasingly polarized times, it is easy for logical debates to give way to emotionally charged shouting matches. Once the idea of free dialogue is gone, riots, destruction and violence are sure to follow, as we’ve seen in almost the entire Western world over the last weeks. However, there is a much more important element at the core of these tensions, that is being overshadowed by the loudest voices and the incendiary media coverage, and this is the value of the Western civilization itself. 

Attacks against Western values, ideas and even the Enlightenment itself, have been around for decades, but up until recently, they had been largely contained in academia and in the fringes of civil society, only rarely escaping to the “real world” and inflicting actual damage.

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The COVID Crisis Supercharged the War on Cash

June 30, 2020

The corona crisis has already taken a very high toll and caused deep damage in our societies and our economies, the extent of which is yet to become apparent. We have seen its impact on productivity, on unemployment, on social cohesion and on political division. However, there is another very worrying trend that has been accelerated under the veil of fear and confusion that the pandemic has spread. The war on cash, already underway for almost a decade, has been drastically intensified over the last few months.
The “Problem”
Over the last years, and as the war on cash has escalated, we’ve gotten used to hearing certain arguments or “reasons” why we should all abandon paper money and move en masse to an exclusively digital economy. These talking points have been

Read More »

“The illusions of Keynesianism create a morally corrupt society” – Part II

June 26, 2020

Part I can be found here
Claudio Grass (CG): Overall, apart from the obvious economic consequences of the crisis, do you also see geopolitical and social ones, on a wider scale? Given all these “moving parts”, from the upcoming US election and internal frictions in the EU to the Hong Kong tensions and the rising public discontent in Latin America, where do expect the chips to fall once this is over? 
Jayant Bhandari (JB): What I have told you about India to a large extent also applies to all of the Third World, where 5 billion out of the 7.5 billion human population lives. China is the only exception.
The Third World simply doesn’t have it in them to maintain the institutions that the colonial powers left behind. After a decade of rapid growth because of

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“The illusions of Keynesianism create a morally corrupt society” – Part II

June 23, 2020

Part I can be found here

Claudio Grass (CG): Overall, apart from the obvious economic consequences of the crisis, do you also see geopolitical and social ones, on a wider scale? Given all these “moving parts”, from the upcoming US election and internal frictions in the EU to the Hong Kong tensions and the rising public discontent in Latin America, where do expect the chips to fall once this is over? Jayant Bhandari (JB): What I have told you about India to a large extent also applies to all of the Third World, where 5 billion out of the 7.5 billion human population lives. China is the only exception. 

The Third World simply doesn’t have it in them to maintain the institutions that the colonial powers left behind. After a decade of rapid growth because of extraneous factors, the

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The War On Cash – COVID Edition Part II

June 21, 2020

The digital “toll” 
It doesn’t require too dark an imagination to realize the gravity of the concerns over the digital yuan. China is a true pioneer when it comes surveillance, censorship and political oppression and the digital age has given an incredibly efficient and effective arsenal to the state. Adding money to that toolkit was a move that was planned for many years and it is abundantly clear how useful a tool it can be for any totalitarian regime. The ability to track citizens’ transactions, access their financial data, control and freeze the account of anyone that presents a potential threat, it all opens the door to the ultimate oppression: total control over private resources, over people’s livelihoods and their capacity to cover their basic needs.
But

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“The illusions of Keynesianism create a morally corrupt society”

June 18, 2020

Interview with Jayant Bhandari: Part I of II

The global economic shutdown has inflicted unprecedented damage and caused widespread destruction both in the economy and in our societies. While the true scale of the crisis is yet to be revealed, we already have enough data to support the case for a deep recession that will likely last for a long time. And yet, mainstream media reports and “expert” commentary has so far largely been focused on the impact of the crisis in the West. 

We keep reading analyses and seeing footage from European and US cities and hospitals, while our perception of the economic and human toll of the corona disaster is restricted to a Western point of view. On the rare occasions that the situation in emerging economies is mentioned in media reports, the

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The War On Cash – COVID Edition Part II

June 16, 2020

The digital “toll” It doesn’t require too dark an imagination to realize the gravity of the concerns over the digital yuan. China is a true pioneer when it comes surveillance, censorship and political oppression and the digital age has given an incredibly efficient and effective arsenal to the state. Adding money to that toolkit was a move that was planned for many years and it is abundantly clear how useful a tool it can be for any totalitarian regime. The ability to track citizens’ transactions, access their financial data, control and freeze the account of anyone that presents a potential threat, it all opens the door to the ultimate oppression: total control over private resources, over people’s livelihoods and their capacity to cover their basic needs. 

But we don’t even have

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Reject the “Next Generation EU Plan”

June 12, 2020

The Václav Klaus Institute urging the Czech Government to reject the dangerous Ursula von der Leyen´s plan
It is rather rare that I share articles on my channel that are not from my own pen. The following article is therefore an exception and for good reason. It is written by none other than the former President of the Czech Republic Václav Klaus, with whom I have a long-standing relationship, based on great respect and many shared values. The arguments he presents here are not only compelling, but very illuminating too, making this article an essential reading. 
Václav Klaus & IVK
The Václav Klaus Institute (IVK) strongly and resolutely rejects the so called “Next Generation EU” proposal to create a huge EU fund, put forward in the speech made by the President

Read More »

The War On Cash – COVID Edition Part I

June 12, 2020

The corona crisis has already taken a very high toll and caused deep damage in our societies and our economies, the extent of which is yet to become apparent. We have seen its impact on productivity, on unemployment, on social cohesion and on political division. However, there is another very worrying trend that has been accelerated under the veil of fear and confusion that the pandemic has spread. The war on cash, that was already underway for almost a decade, has been drastically intensified over the last few months.  

The “problem”

Over the last years, and as the war on cash escalated, we’ve gotten used to hear certain arguments or “reasons” on why we should all abandon paper money and move en masse to an exclusively digital economy. These talking points have been repeated

Read More »

Economic Collapse Has Turned Many Europeans against the EU

June 11, 2020

Since the beginning of the year, the corona crisis has monopolized news coverage to the extent that a lot of very important stories and developments either went underreported or were ignored altogether. One such example was the very surprising ruling that came out of the German Constitutional Court in early May, which challenged the actions and remit of the European Central Bank (ECB).
In essence, the court’s decision made it clear that the ECB’s quantitative easing (QE) program did not respect the “principle of proportionality,” abusing the ECB mandate, while the German government failed to challenge the bank’s policies as it should have.
The ruling also mentioned the side effects of the program and of the ECB’s overall ultraloose policy direction, such as the

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Technocracy vs Liberty

June 10, 2020

“I prefer true but imperfect knowledge, even if it leaves much undetermined and unpredictable, to a pretense of exact knowledge that is likely to be false.” Friedrich August von Hayek
On Friday Dave from X22 and I discussed the planned “Cultural Revolution 2020” led by “the anointed” technocrats and whether we have to accept their reality as ours – or not?
[embedded content]
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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A crisis is a terrible thing to waste – Part I
“You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that, it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.” -Rahm Emanuel, Barack Obama’s Chief of

Read More »

Reject the “Next Generation EU Plan”

June 9, 2020

The Václav Klaus Institute urging the Czech Government to reject the dangerous Ursula von der Leyen´s plan

It is rather rare that I share articles on my channel that are not from my own pen. The following article is therefore an exception and for good reason. It is written by none other than the former President of the Czech Republic Václav Klaus, with whom I have a long-standing relationship, based on great respect and many shared values. The arguments he presents here are not only compelling, but very illuminating too, making this article an essential reading. 

Václav Klaus & IVK 

The Václav Klaus Institute (IVK) strongly and resolutely rejects the so called “Next Generation EU” proposal to create a huge EU fund, put forward in the speech made by the President of the

Read More »

Technocracy vs Liberty

June 9, 2020

“I prefer true but imperfect knowledge, even if it leaves much undetermined and unpredictable, to a pretense of exact knowledge that is likely to be false.” Friedrich August von Hayek

On Friday Dave from X22 and I discussed the planned “Cultural Revolution 2020” led by “the anointed” technocrats and whether we have to accept their reality as ours – or not?

[embedded content]
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Read More »

The German Court’s Unexpected Blow to the ECB

June 4, 2020

A high German court recently ruled that the European Central Bank has overstepped the bounds of its power. The angry response from high-ranking European bureaucrats tells us a lot about what they want for the EU.

This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. Narrated by Millian Quinteros.
Original Article: “The German Court’s Unexpected Blow to the ECB“

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How We Might Respond to a Panedemic Were Society Not So Dominated by the State
“There are no libertarians in an epidemic” crowed Atlantic reporter Peter Nicholas back on March 10, as he listed the numerous economic interventions the Trump administration was undertaking in the wake of the mounting COVID-19

Read More »

The controlled demolition of Western Civilization

June 2, 2020

Please forgive me that I don’t talk about the flue called “Corona”. I truly believe it is a deception and will be remembered as the attempt to destroy the private economy as well as the capitalistic system. What we are witnessing during this “corona-crisis” is simply unprecedented. It is nothing short of a blatant attempt to destroy the private sector, the capitalist system and the financial sovereignty of every citizen. The state denies the right of every individual to work, to put food on the table, to provide for their families and to take personal responsibility for their own choices. On a societal level, is nothing less than the transformation into a technocratic, big data “new normal” that already exists in China and this Orwellian nightmare is already our new and sad reality.

Read More »

Einladung zur Auktion in Zürich vom 8. – 10. Juni 2020

May 29, 2020

Numismatik – Eine Klasse für sich!

Es freut mich Ihnen diese Veranstaltung vorstellen zu dürfen, die in Zusammenarbeit mit meinem langjährigen Partner „pro aurum“ in den nächsten Tagen stattfindet.  

Die Welt der Numismatik hat eine eigene Faszinationskraft – historische, kulturelle und ästhetische Werte gehen auf einzigartige Weise in jedes Stück ein und geben ihm einen unschätzbaren Sammlerwert. Für die Anlage in historische Münzen braucht es darum hohe Kennerschaft. Die Experten von «pro aurum Historical Coins AG» können hier auf ein Netzwerk von weltführenden Spezialisten und Auktionshäusern zurückgreifen. Dabei bieten sie den Kunden – Sammlerfreunden wie auch Kapitalanlegern – eine Komplettbetreuung in allen Fragen rund um die Numismatik. Diese Auktion wird von den

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An unexpected blow to the ECB – Part II

May 28, 2020

The corona effect

Although the German court ruling had nothing to do with this latest wave of easing and money printing triggered by the coronavirus crisis, the timing of it puts the present situation in a different perspective.

This crisis has served as a “judgment day” of sorts. It revealed the countless failures, the incompetence and the disarray at the very core of most institutions, not just in Europe, but globally. The more decentralized nations did fare relatively better than those with a high degree of centralization, the latter unfortunately being the majority. There, the lack of consistency and of clear leadership, the contradictory messages, the failures of public healthcare that cost countless lives, the political decisions that cost millions their jobs and

Read More »

An unexpected blow to the ECB

May 26, 2020

Since the beginning of the year, the corona crisis has come to monopolize the news coverage to the extent that a lot of very important stories and developments either went underreported or were ignored altogether. One such example was the very surprising ruling out of the German Constitutional Court in early May, that challenged the actions and remit of the ECB. This decision could have severe repercussions if it were to be held up, but the reactions to it were arguably even more consequential and telling of the ECB’s and the EU’s stance on national sovereignty, on respecting member-states’ own laws and on their own expansive powers.
ECB “went too far”
In essence, the court’s decision made it clear that the ECB’s QE program did not respect the “principle of

Read More »

An unexpected blow to the ECB

May 26, 2020

Since the beginning of the year, the corona crisis has come to monopolize the news coverage to the extent that a lot of very important stories and developments either went underreported or were ignored altogether. One such example was the very surprising ruling out of the German Constitutional Court in early May, that challenged the actions and remit of the ECB. This decision could have severe repercussions if it were to be held up, but the reactions to it were arguably even more consequential and telling of the ECB’s and the EU’s stance on national sovereignty, on respecting member-states’ own laws and on their own expansive powers.  

ECB “went too far”

In essence, the court’s decision made it clear that the ECB’s QE program did not respect the “principle of proportionality”,

Read More »

“We are expecting a new wave and we’re prepared for it.”

May 14, 2020

Interview with Robert Hartmann, Co-Owner ProAurum

Over the last couple of months, we’ve witnessed unprecedented changes in the global economy, in the markets and in our societies. The corona crisis and the governmental measures that were introduced had a dramatic and direct effect on all of us, as investors and as citizens.

That is especially true of precious metals investors. A new gold rush is now underway, with impressive price gains and elevated demand levels that are expected to persist. However, this skyrocketing demand, triggered by the panic in stock markets, coincided with a historic supply shock back in March, creating serious and widespread disruptions in the physical precious metals market. To discuss exactly what happened, what the experience

Read More »

“We are expecting a new wave and we’re prepared for it.”

May 14, 2020

Interview with Robert Hartmann, Co-Owner ProAurum

Over the last couple of months, we’ve witnessed unprecedented changes in the global economy, in the markets and in our societies. The corona crisis and the governmental measures that were introduced had a dramatic and direct effect on all of us, as investors and as citizens. 

That is especially true of precious metals investors. A new gold rush is now underway, with impressive price gains and elevated demand levels that are expected to persist. However, this skyrocketing demand, triggered by the panic in stock markets, coincided with a historic supply shock back in March, creating serious and widespread disruptions in the physical precious metals market. To discuss exactly what happened, what the experience was like in the

Read More »

Hard talk with Václav Klaus: “The people should say NO to all of it.”

May 4, 2020

As we get deeper into this crisis and we get used to our “new normal”, it’s easy to focus on the daily corona-horror stories in the media or the latest shocking unemployment numbers, and lose track of the bigger picture and of what is really, fundamentally important. Even as the lockdown measures begin to get phased out, the scale of the economic damage is unimaginable and the idea of returning to “business as usual” is no longer tenable. The last couple of months have had a severe impact not just on the economy, but on our societies and geopolitical reality too. These changes are most likely irreversible and we as citizens and as investors will have to be prepared to deal with this massive shift and all that it entails for a long time.
Amid the panic, the

Read More »

Hard talk with Václav Klaus: “The people should say NO to all of it.”

May 4, 2020

As we get deeper into this crisis and we get used to our “new normal”, it’s easy to focus on the daily corona-horror stories in the media or the latest shocking unemployment numbers, and lose track of the bigger picture and of what is really, fundamentally important. Even as the lockdown measures begin to get phased out, the scale of the economic damage is unimaginable and the idea of returning to “business as usual” is no longer tenable. The last couple of months have had a severe impact not just on the economy, but on our societies and geopolitical reality too. These changes are most likely irreversible and we as citizens and as investors will have to be prepared to deal with this massive shift and all that it entails for a long time.

Amid the panic, the distractions and the

Read More »

“A crisis must never be misused to extend state power”

April 16, 2020

Interview with H.S.H. Prince Michael of Liechtenstein

In these times of great uncertainty and widespread fear, it is natural for many citizens to turn to their leaders for guidance and reassurance. However, these much-needed qualities of real leadership have proven to be elusive in many countries around the world. Instead of that, in the US and even more so in the EU, we saw a lack of consistency and planning in the face of the corona epidemic, adding to the overall confusion among citizens and further fueling the media-driven panic. This is why I decided to turn to Prince Michael of Liechtenstein, who kindly agreed to share his views and insights on the present crisis. His tempered and rational analysis, along with his deep understanding of history, have offered many valuable

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Nothing Is What It Seems

April 8, 2020

My latest interview about Corona, Liberty, Private Property, Authoritarism, and a fear-mongering global media campaign, which I call borderline criminal

[embedded content]

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Corona crisis: the cost of the response – Part II

April 7, 2020

Responding to the response

This time around, both central banks and governments have gone “all-in” in their response packages and the scale of the support and liquidity provided dwarf the measures that we saw in the 2008 crisis. Of course, the question remains whether this will all be enough to help save the economy from these massive self-inflicted wounds. 

However, one thing is clear so far and that is the uniformity of the political handling of the economic crisis. All officials and representatives appear to be on the same page and using the same type of language to describe their interventions. They all present said packages and measures as a direct and essential response to the coronavirus, as though they are meant to provide relief from the effects of the disease itself.

Read More »