Trouble in Central Planning Paradise?Submitted by Marc Clair on Thu, 04/25/2013 - 23:08
by Chris Rossini
German Chancellor Angela Merkel thrust herself into the debate over interest rates in Europe. Apparently the central planners at the ECB are in bind:
“The ECB is in a difficult situation,” Ms. Merkel told a conference hosted by the Sparkassen association of German savings banks.
“It would probably have to increase interest rates for Germany a bit,” she said. But for other euro members “it would actually need to do more to make sure that liquidity is available to firms.”
What’s a central banker to do? Who do you satisfy with your magic wand?
And how does Merkel know what interest rates should be more than anyone else?
The truth is, she doesn’t know. No one knows, which is why central planners always twist themselves (and everyone else with them) into a massive Gordian Knot.
Interest rates, like every other price, must be set in the free market. No central planning or price fixing; for they only do harm. Rates need to be set based on the time preference of each individual. In other words, the degree to which a person prefers a present satisfaction to the same satisfaction in the future. Time preferences are entirely subjective, based on each individual.
The idea that a couple of people should be sitting in a marble palace to “set interest rates” is the height of ignorance on the part of the government-educated masses. The planners will set rates alright….and they’ll do so for their own enrichment and at the expense of everyone else.
No price fixing of anything by any government or central bank!
We need to get there.