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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

War on Cash: EU steps up the fight

18 days ago

By Claudio Grass, Hünenberg See, Switzerland

The prolonged and repeated lockdowns, business closures and travel bans have caused widespread economic devastation and changed the way all of us live, work and interact with each other. These were the most obvious changes that the covid crisis brought with it, however, a lot more has been unfolding in the background. Governments in most advanced economies have grasped the opportunity of this crisis and all the fear and uncertainty that surrounds it and have taken bold steps to achieve further centralization of power and to expand their control and authority. 

A great example of such a shift is the escalation of the war on cash that started almost immediately after the virus began to make headlines. It began with scaremongering

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Precious metals outlook: This summer presents a rare entry point

26 days ago

By Claudio Grass, Hünenberg, Switzerland

It’s been an intense few weeks for precious metals investors, with gold and silver suffering setbacks and somewhat increased volatility. This has caused some observers and mainstream analysts to jump to gloomy conclusions and proclaim that gold’s bull run is over. Instead, they’re betting everything on the “great recovery” from the covid crisis and on an apparently imminent roaring comeback of the world economy. However, when one takes a closer look at the reality on the ground, at the state of the real economy and at the historical context of precious metals performance, arguments like that appear to be increasingly hollow and unconvincing. 

Naive optimism

Ever since the beginning of the year, politicians, central bankers and

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Monetary Climate Change and its implications for investors – Part II

June 24, 2021

Interview with Ronald-Peter Stöferle: Part II of II

Claudio Grass (CG): Even before the pandemic, there was a clear trend towards the politicization of central banks and monetary policy. Over the last year, however, we saw this accelerate considerably, to the point where the supposed independence of the Fed or the ECB looks like a thing of the past. Should investors, savers and ordinary citizens be concerned about this development?

Ronald Stöferle (RS): Yes, for several reasons. For one thing, central bankers increasingly see themselves as active supporters of political programs, and thus as financiers of the state, rather than as monetary guardians. Additionally, central banks raise their inflation targets. The Federal Reserve has already switched to average inflation

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Monetary Climate Change and its implications for investors

June 22, 2021

Interview with Ronald-Peter Stöferle: Part I of II

I’ve long been an avid and enthusiastic reader of the “In Gold We Trust” report (“IGWT”), as I believe countless other gold investors are, and I’ve always found great value in the insights, the analyses and all the astute commentary and elucidating charts it contains. 

However, I was particularly looking forward to this year’s IGWT report. So much had changed, so many shifts and shocks had taken place in 2020, that any conservative and rational investor would surely benefit from Incrementum’s insights. As I expected, it turned out to be an incredibly interesting read. 

Given the extreme disruptions, the extent of the damage and the unprecedented interventions in the global economy, it might seem shocking to many reasonable

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“Radical efforts seldom work if they are deprived of common sense” – Part II

June 10, 2021

Interview with Fernando del Pino Calvo-Sotelo: Part II of II

Claudio Grass (CG): In your analyses and articles on the issues around the covid crisis, you have adopted a very rational and calm approach, focusing on evidence and scientific facts. Why do you think it is that so many people, both among the governing and the governed, have failed to use these logical tools in dealing with this pandemic? Why does emotion prevail over logic so often?

Fernando del Pino (FdP): Pascal wrote nearly 400 years ago that “the heart has reasons that reason cannot understand”. We are human beings, and thank God we are not cold robots using reason alone. Man is a combination of head, heart and soul, meaning reason, emotion and spirituality, and it has been wonderfully created that way. When all

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“Radical efforts seldom work if they are deprived of common sense”

June 8, 2021

Interview with Fernando del Pino Calvo-Sotelo: Part I of II

Even from the early days of the covid crisis, most sensible observers were concerned that the risk of mass panic and of fear overtaking reason was going to be much higher and much more severe than the biological threat itself. As the weeks and months went on, those concerns were substantiated, as politicians and the media all over the world fueled the flames, bombarded the public with apocalyptic images and chose sensationalism and emotional appeals over rational analysis and responsible reporting. The impact of this approach soon became apparent: the majority of the population of most Western nations was paralyzed by fear, abandoned critical thinking and blindly trusted the authorities, the “experts” and the institutions,

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Inflation risk takes center stage – Part II of II

May 31, 2021

The hidden tax

A lot of people might be aware of historical cases of hyperinflation, like that of Hungary and the Weimar Republic, or even contemporary ones, like that of Venezuela. And yet, these are taught or reported like extreme cases, very far removed from the daily experience of most modern Western citizens. They are presented as though this sort of thing “could never happen here” and very often, the mechanisms and the conscious choices that led to these disasters are being downplayed. External circumstances, particular and unique conditions at the time, and other irrelevant factors are frequently used to disperse the blame and make it appear as though it wasn’t the out-of-control money creation alone that was the cause. This is why, in so many taxpayers’ and savers’ minds,

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Inflation risk takes center stage – Part II of II

May 31, 2021

The hidden tax
A lot of people might be aware of historical cases of hyperinflation, like that of Hungary and the Weimar Republic, or even contemporary ones, like that of Venezuela. And yet, these are taught or reported like extreme cases, very far removed from the daily experience of most modern Western citizens. They are presented as though this sort of thing “could never happen here” and very often, the mechanisms and the conscious choices that led to these disasters are being downplayed. External circumstances, particular and unique conditions at the time, and other irrelevant factors are frequently used to disperse the blame and make it appear as though it wasn’t the out-of-control money creation alone that was the cause. This is why, in so many

Read More »

Inflation risk takes center stage – Part I of II

May 27, 2021

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been seeing more and more mainstream headlines about inflation fears being on the rise, both in the US and in Europe. Central bankers on both sides of the Atlantic have been doing their best to assuage these concerns, promising that they have everything under control and that the situation will without a doubt normalize soon. Still, all these assurances have failed to convince the markets and many investors are starting to see the cracks in the much celebrated “recovery” from the covid crisis.

End of the road?

Even by the heavily biased and inaccurate metrics used by central bankers and mainstream analysts and economists, such as the CPI, inflation is certainly picking up and there are plenty of reasons to worry that it may not be easily

Read More »

Inflation risk takes center stage – Part I of II

May 27, 2021

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been seeing more and more mainstream headlines about inflation fears being on the rise, both in the US and in Europe. Central bankers on both sides of the Atlantic have been doing their best to assuage these concerns, promising that they have everything under control and that the situation will without a doubt normalize soon. Still, all these assurances have failed to convince the markets and many investors are starting to see the cracks in the much celebrated “recovery” from the covid crisis.
End of the road?
Even by the heavily biased and inaccurate metrics used by central bankers and mainstream analysts and economists, such as the CPI, inflation is certainly picking up and there are plenty of reasons to worry that it may

Read More »

A fork in the road: Digital Fiat vs. Decentralized Money

May 12, 2021

I have long thought about and written about the incredible opportunities that decentralized digital technologies have brought forward, especially when it comes to solving financial and monetary problems. The more these technologies and their applications develop and mature, the more I believe they hold many of the answers to some our most complex challenges. Chief among them is the future of money itself: the idea of a decentralized, robust and independent system of freely competing private currencies that protect their users’ privacy and allow for full financial sovereignty. 

However, this vision now appears to be under threat, as statist forces and old institutions have entered this same arena, began using the same tools and started developing their own structures, all pushing

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Get real, be real, and buy real – Part II

April 29, 2021

Interview with David Morgan: Part II of II

Claudio Grass (CG): During the first wave of lockdowns and travel bans we saw a lot of disruptions in the physical precious metal market. With delivery delays and logistics problems, has the situation fully normalized today for physical silver, or are you seeing shortages?

David Morgan (DM): We are still seeing shortages. I mean, the amount of investment demand set a record in 2020 and has remained robust in 2021. The pressure on the market comes partially from the supply chain, which is still slightly disrupted, but largely repaired, but it is primarily at this time from a backlog. It is a backlog of orders for the U.S. Mint product, the silver eagle it is referred to, because they’re making a changeover for security reasons. You are

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Get real, be real, and buy real

April 27, 2021

Interview with David Morgan: Part I of II

The past year has been a remarkably interesting time for precious metals and especially for silver. The metal had spent many years in the shadow of its “big brother”, but it made an impressive, roaring comeback that grabbed headlines and mainstream interest. 

As can be expected, this attracted a lot of new investors to silver and many first-time buyers. For those of us who understand the importance of physical precious metals this was a positive development, however, we also think it is essential for all investors to know what and why their buying. To get a clear picture on the status and the outlook of the silver market, I turned to David Morgan. His long and direct experience and his insights are incredibly rare and valuable, while he

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Reality check: The “miracle recovery” narrative

April 16, 2021

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been constantly bombarded by news reports and “expert” analyses celebrating an incredible global economic recovery. They’re not even presented as projections or expectations anymore, but as a fact, as though the return to vibrant growth is already underway. Stock markets certainly seem to agree, going from record high to record high, while all the political and institutional leaders congratulate themselves on a job well done.
Although this is largely the consensus in most Western economies, this jubilant, victorious mood feels most bizarre in Europe. Celebrating a recovery during a third round of total lockdowns, closed shops, travel bans and millions out of work, seems like cognitive dissonance at best, or barefaced political

Read More »

Reality check: The “miracle recovery” narrative

April 15, 2021

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been constantly bombarded by news reports and “expert” analyses celebrating an incredible global economic recovery. They’re not even presented as projections or expectations anymore, but as a fact, as though the return to vibrant growth is already underway. Stock markets certainly seem to agree, going from record high to record high, while all the political and institutional leaders congratulate themselves on a job well done. 

Although this is largely the consensus in most Western economies, this jubilant, victorious mood feels most bizarre in Europe. Celebrating a recovery during a third round of total lockdowns, closed shops, travel bans and millions out of work, seems like cognitive dissonance at best, or barefaced political hypocrisy at worst.

Read More »

Precious metals are and always have been the ultimate insurance

April 8, 2021

Interview with Robert Hartmann

As we enter the second quarter of 2021, the year during which so many mainstream analysts and politicians have predicted we’ll see a miraculous recovery from the covid crisis, it is becoming increasingly clear that the damage inflicted by the lockdowns and the shutdowns is really very extensive an persistent. Of course, I’m referring to the damage to the real economy, that is, to actual businesses, households and the countless citizens that were rendered unemployed. Because if one decides to look at the stock market to gauge the health of the global economy, they couldn’t be blamed for thinking we living a repeat of the roaring 20s. 

In this highly volatile and obviously unsustainable environment, it might be challenging for conservative investors

Read More »

Precious metals are and always have been the ultimate insurance

April 8, 2021

Interview with Robert Hartmann
As we enter the second quarter of 2021, the year during which so many mainstream analysts and politicians have predicted we’ll see a miraculous recovery from the covid crisis, it is becoming increasingly clear that the damage inflicted by the lockdowns and the shutdowns is really very extensive an persistent. Of course, I’m referring to the damage to the real economy, that is, to actual businesses, households and the countless citizens that were rendered unemployed. Because if one decides to look at the stock market to gauge the health of the global economy, they couldn’t be blamed for thinking we living a repeat of the roaring 20s.
In this highly volatile and obviously unsustainable environment, it might be challenging for

Read More »

“If you increase the competition of ideas, more truth emerges”

March 30, 2021

Interview with Icaros

For this interview, I have reached out to Icaros, principal author of the blog coronacircus.com. He is part of a group of liberty lovers working to build a “freedom cell” in the Swiss Alps. Before the interview, he told me the project is advancing well, as four new families have joined recently. I also happen to know him in real life, although he is completely unaffiliated to my commercial activity.

His background is information technology, and he sees the Internet as a tool of emancipation and liberation, rather than oppression and subjugation; it is in that regard specifically that I have decided to interview him, far from the (sometimes) esoteric themes he addresses on his blog.

———-

Icaros, can you tell us about yourself? Who are you and why do

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Anti-Corona Demonstration Switzerland

March 24, 2021

Dear friends of liberty

this is an original translation from German into English by me of my first speech I gave a few weeks ago at the second demonstration against Corona in Switzerland.

Enjoy and stay free,

Claudio

Title: He who does not command himself, always remains servant!

This is my original speech translated into Englischund nachfolgende das Original in Deutsch:

Titel: Wer sich nicht selbst befiehlt, bleibt immer Knecht!

This is my original speech in GermanClaudio Grass, Hünenberg See, Switzerland

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Therefore please feel free to share!

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“There is no such thing as a free lunch, but the temptation to distribute one or to get one seems to be too strong”

March 16, 2021

Interview with Daniel Model: Part II of II

Claudio Grass (CG): All over the West, we saw extreme pain and suffering caused by the mass unemployment that the lockdowns and shutdowns triggered. Across the board, every government’s answer to all this destruction was helicopter money. Do you think throwing cash at this problem was enough and do you find that the various support and relief measures were sufficient to counterbalance all of the deleterious effects of those policies? 

Daniel Model (DM): First of all, we have to acknowledge that we find ourselves in a particular situation in the sense that the creation of money out of nothing does not have an immediate effect on price increases, on a defined basket of goods. The actual technological boost of digitalization has a

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“There is no such thing as a free lunch, but the temptation to distribute one or to get one seems to be too strong”

March 11, 2021

Interview with Daniel Model: Part I of II

During these absurd and uncertain times, it is easy to be consumed by the 24-hour news cycle, to be constantly distracted by the latest news and updates, and eventually to lose track of what really matters. We are indeed facing unprecedented challenges and we are witnessing a historic turning point in the relationship of the individual citizen to the state and to centralized power in general. Thus, one cannot be blamed for the urge to follow the most recent measures or restrictions or for the human need to discuss the overall situation with others, in an effort to make sense of it. Nevertheless, we must always keep in mind that actions speak louder than words, and that merely talking about any problem will do nothing to fix it. 

This is

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Gold is the money of the kings. Silver is the money of the bourgeoisie. Fiat is the money of the slaves.

March 10, 2021

Gold has been used as money (or a store of value) for thousands of years. It’s always been valuable to humans, for some reason, and it’s withstood everything history has thrown at it.

Silver too.

Fiat money is what we use today. It’s essentially money created out of thin air, on a spreadsheet, by banks and the government via monetary policy, and it has absolutely nothing backing it. This is why currencies come and go, such as the Zim Dollar which lasted a few decades.

Bitcoin is an interesting spanner in the wheel, mind you, and it’s one about which precious metals consultant Claudio Grass has mixed views. For good reason; cryptocurrency is very new and is invisible. It’s nothing more than computer code dependent on electricity and an internet connection.

But, like

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The bitcoin surge in its proper context

March 2, 2021

Over the last few weeks we’ve been witnessing a historic surge in the Bitcoin price, a seemingly unstoppable ride that the mainstream media headlines can hardly keep up with. Especially following the news that Elon Musks’ Tesla bought $1.5 in the cryptocurrency, sending it to new record highs, most of the media coverage appears to be focused on all the wrong things. Part fear-mongering over the many “risks” of bitcoin, part pleading for governments to step in and regulate the entire crypto sector, and part bitterly dismissing bitcoin’s meteoric rise as bubble, most analysts and pundits seem to take the entire story out of context, or more often, to miss the forest for the trees. 

We also saw a lot of well-respected, “established” investors and fund managers chime in this cacophony

Read More »

The bitcoin surge in its proper context

March 2, 2021

Over the last few weeks we’ve been witnessing a historic surge in the Bitcoin price, a seemingly unstoppable ride that the mainstream media headlines can hardly keep up with. Especially following the news that Elon Musks’ Tesla bought $1.5 in the cryptocurrency, sending it to new record highs, most of the media coverage appears to be focused on all the wrong things. Part fear-mongering over the many “risks” of bitcoin, part pleading for governments to step in and regulate the entire crypto sector, and part bitterly dismissing bitcoin’s meteoric rise as bubble, most analysts and pundits seem to take the entire story out of context, or more often, to miss the forest for the trees.
We also saw a lot of well-respected, “established” investors and fund managers chime

Read More »

“Self-control and self-respect have become undervalued”

February 17, 2021

Interview with Theodore Dalrymple
After a year of lockdowns, social isolation, financial uncertainty and extreme political polarization, a lot of people are finding it very difficult to remain optimistic and to see a way back to some kind of normalcy. While the economic, social and political impact of the covid crisis can be easily identified and frequently discussed, the unseen, psychological pressures that millions of people are struggling with often go undiscussed. Even when such issues are being reported, the media coverage often misrepresents the actual underlying problems or rushes to naive but popular conclusions.
For many years, even before the pandemic, we’ve witnessed a shift in the way we look human psychology. A lot of behaviors, personality traits and

Read More »

“Self-control and self-respect have become undervalued”

February 16, 2021

Interview with Theodore Dalrymple

After a year of lockdowns, social isolation, financial uncertainty and extreme political polarization, a lot of people are finding it very difficult to remain optimistic and to see a way back to some kind of normalcy. While the economic, social and political impact of the covid crisis can be easily identified and frequently discussed, the unseen, psychological pressures that millions of people are struggling with often go undiscussed. Even when such issues are being reported, the media coverage often misrepresents the actual underlying problems or rushes to naive but popular conclusions. 

For many years, even before the pandemic, we’ve witnessed a shift in the way we look human psychology. A lot of behaviors, personality traits and emotional

Read More »

“Settled science”: The rallying cry back to the dark ages

February 11, 2021

Increasingly over the past decade, but infinitely more so over the last year, we’ve been hearing politicians, mainstream media and all kinds of experts urging, and often sternly demanding, citizens, voters and taxpayers to “follow the science”. This demand usually accompanies various new policies, regulations and mandates. Very often, those tend to have passed into law with very little public debate and most of the time, they require some type of sacrifice on the part of the governed. They are instructed to give up another chunk of their income, part of their liberties, or a few of their ideas and personal beliefs, always for the common good and in the name of science. 

Examples of this phenomenon abound, from emissions taxes to fight global warming to today’s lockdowns to fight

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“The bank and the government have essentially blended into one entity” – Part II

February 4, 2021

Interview with Karim Taleb Part II of II

Claudio Grass (CG): Part and parcel of that same institutional “strategy”, especially in its current form, is the idea that deficits and debt don’t matter. Basically, after 2020, it can be argued that we’re all Modern Monetary Theorists now, as nobody in any position of authority has expressed any real concern over the actual costs of all this “free money”. Given the undeniable political advantages of such a “Magic Money Tree”, do you think there’s any way we’re going back to a sensible policy path?  

Karim Taleb (KT): Besides exerting a monopoly over the issuance of the dollar, the Fed and the government seem equally interested in monopolizing the field of economics.

The mainstream media is an important tool towards this end, and to a

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“The bank and the government have essentially blended into one entity”

February 2, 2021

Interview with Karim Taleb Part I of II: 

A lot has been said and written about the impact of the Covid crisis on the global economy and on the prospects of a strong recovery in 2021. Especially since the start of the year, there seems to be a consensus among government officials, institutional leaders and mainstream market analysts and pundits, pointing to an extremely positive outlook.

And yet, many investors and market observers who understand monetary history, who have studied past crises and recessions, or simply have even a vague recollection of the basic rules of economics taught in high school, find it hard to embrace that view. The scale of the damage that was done by all the lockdowns and the shutdowns and the unprecedented wave of stimulus packages and monetary

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