The Austrian Way: In praise of Jim Rickards

Have you ever heard of Jim Rickards?

Yes. Nice work, you’re probably on a sound path.

No. You need to sort that out, dude.

There are some people who austro-libertarian window lickers like us need to doff our caps to, and one is Jim Rickards.

Our ideas, as we often bemoan, are out of favor and we’re losing the on-going marketing war to spread them more widely.

During times like this, authors and speakers who make the complex accessible, the un-thought of believable and who carefully and empathetically bring our ideas to the great mass of the population should be given shout outs for their work as apostles.

Jim Rickards is an apostle indeed.

Who is this Jim?

Jim is a trained lawyer turned long-term financier who’s been through the guts of the financial system.

He’s got one hell of a network, has worked on financial war games with the Pentagon and was party to the biggest hedge fund flame out of all time, as counsel to Long Term Capital Management. LTCM’s fall was spectacular and Jim’s accounts were vital to the publication of the definitive account of this gripping piece of financial history.

Jim’s been there and done it in the markets and has one of the most amazing appetites for learning, scholarship and widening the mind of anyone I’ve ever met.

However, there is one thing which makes him an apostle in my mind.

His book Currency Wars. And, his tireless promotion of the ideas contained within it.

The financial book to read

People often ask ‘What’s the best book to give to people to convert them to our world view, man?’

Good question.

You cannot shove some deep-cover gold bug rant down their throats. That just closes minds when they’re not ready for that grade-A stuff yet.

You can’t really recommend theory books by the Austrian School greats. Some are well written introductions to our little crew-think, but they’re generally not fun and don’t make things human enough.

Currency Wars is simply an outstanding book because it makes so many subjects within economics, finance and markets understandable, accessible and interesting in the human perspective. All without dumbing down the content or patronizing the reader.

A great example of this making the technical accessible is his discussion on monetarism and the monetarist aims of controlling monetary velocity like a pendulum within your economy. Jim takes the metaphor further instead arguing that velocity is more like a wrecking ball (minus Miley, of course) that simply cannot be accurately swung or managed in its movements. Now that’s a takeaway for button heads like me even!

Jim’s book joined a whole host of others written by similarly clever well-intentioned people. Yet his book kicked their collective arses.

Currency Wars soared into the New York Times best-seller list, where it still resides and it continues to hold sway in the top 5 finance books on Amazon two years after release. Nice work.

Such a long burn in terms of continued sales and required media appearances is a stellar endorsement of Jim, his thinking and his delivery.

And, it gets even better for us fan-boys.

There’s another book coming!

Next April this hero to Bogpaper releases his follow up book – The Death of Money.

Having met Jim and heard about his work schedule, he must be one of those type-As who needs only 4 hours sleep a night.

Even with all his other work and commitments, he’s been painstakingly writing his next book, typing away into the wee hours of the morning and on the regular long haul flights.

We’re really looking forward to the release. As a general bore on these things there are few books that excite me, but Jim’s take on what’s likely to happen to our money and banking system post QE to infinity and financial repression is something I’ve got to read.

If this book’s half as good as the preceding one it’ll be worth the cover price.

Keep an eye out for it and give some copies of Currency Wars for Christmas.

  • Joshua Roberts

    the only guy i know with the balls and geopolitical savvy to say “IMF will be the last capitalized player at the table.”

    • Billy Bankers

      He sure is one smart dude. That’s a book to look out for for sure. Maybe @Skoylesy can score me a copy! Someone should review it for the community too.

      • Joshua Roberts

        if i dont see you on skoylesy’s new show within the first 10 episodes a barrage of tweets will ensue…

      • Joshua Roberts

        perhaps you should take the second half of an upcoming GetREAL and do a book review on the show ;) *hint hint* (and then i would have rickards up the following week – not that stacy needs my production advice! :D

  • silverminer

    I’m a big fan of Rickards. Anyone who he can keep banging on about $7000 an oz gold and sound both credible and confident is a top man in my book (I only hope he’s right….).