La vraie valeur de l'argent

Dans le monde entier, les gens commettent une grave erreur de perception qui les empêche de prendre des mesures concrètes pour se protéger de l'inflation ou de la déflation. Cette erreur s'appelle “illusion monétaire,” c'est la croyance qu'une unité de compte nationale constitue la meilleure mesure de valeur, alors même que sa valeur réelle est instable.

Historiquement, cet échec à se protéger de l'inflation ou de la déflation a débouché sur des catastrophes. Lorsqu'une inflation spectaculaire a frappé l'Allemagne en 1923, elle a effacé la vraie valeur des économies de toute une vie et des bénéfices de sécurité sociale (non couverts et non indexés) de millions de personnes, dont la colère a contribué à la montée du nazisme.

De la même manière, une spectaculaire déflation dans de nombreux pays du monde au début des années 1930 a amplifié la vraie valeur des dettes (non couvertes et non indexées), ce qui a mené à des millions de cessations de paiement et à de nombreuses faillites de banques. La déflation a aussi amplifié la valeur réelle des revenus et des salaires, accroissant licenciements et chômage. Le manque de couverture et d'indexation nous a amené la Grande Dépression. Une grande partie du malaise économique du Japon des dernières années reflète aussi des dettes (non couvertes et non indexées) amplifiées par la déflation depuis 1999.

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