Posted Sep 12, 2015 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Thank you for your fascinating blog. I thoroughly enjoy reading your analysis on social, political, financial and historical topics. i would like to make a couple points with questions and get your analysis or feedback on these.
ANSWER: Historically, this has been the difference between movable and immovable assets, such as real estate. Collectibles, stocks, and precious metals are in the moveable category. Of course this is what governments are now attempting to seize.
The best hedge would be to have assets in terms of stocks in the USA, and certainly not in Europe. It may be harder to engage in a taxation of shares as an asset, whereas in Europe they are much closer to communism and see nothing wrong with taxing assets, not just income.
If we look at the fall of Rome, the first asset class to decline was real estate, as you cannot take it with you when you leave town. Thus, the population of Rome collapsed from 1 million to 15,000 by the Middle Ages. People had no choice and just walked away, unable to pay the taxes demanded.
Taxes are the great destroyer. You are an economic slave if you simply cannot retire without having to pay taxes. Taxes reduce economic growth and lower productivity for they are no different, economically speaking, from some gangster demanding “protection” money to operate a business.