Those who hold the gold make the rules
It was the abandonment of the last vestige of the gold standard in 1971 which ushered in the age of unbridled debt we are witness to now. It also ushered in the age of ultra-crony capitalism. Fiat currencies (such as we have now) and crony capitalism go hand in hand. Gold deters such recklessness (though it does not eliminate it).
The Germans store nearly half of their gold reserves at the New York Federal Reserve. As things euro have grown tenuous over the past few years many Germans have become increasingly concerned as to the status of their hoard. A number of German politicians have insisted on seeing the gold held in the vaults below lower Manhattan.
The Federal Reserve however has not allowed this.
A sovereign government (at least still technically) wants to see the gold it OWNS, but the Federal Reserve refuses this?
(From Der Spiegel)
“Finally, in 2007, “following numerous enquiries,” Bundesbank staff members were allowed to see the facility, but they reportedly only made it to the anteroom of the German reserves.
In fact, auditors from the Bundesbank made a second visit in May 2011. This time one of the nine compartments was also opened, in which the German gold bars are densely stacked. A few were pulled out and weighed. But this part of the report has been blacked out — out of consideration for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
“I would like more transparency on the issue,” says Bundesbank board member Thiele. The Americans are very sensitive, though, when it comes to security procedures in their gold storage facilities. In their second major depository, the legendary Fort Knox, practically no one in recent decades has been allowed to view the gold reserves.”
It is worth noting this rather odd bit at the end of the attached article. The author says regarding the feasibility of shipping the German gold back to Germany:
“From a purely logistical perspective, though, returning the reserves seems outlandish. One cannot simply pack 1,500 tons of gold into an Airbus A380 super-jumbo jet and fly it back to Germany.”
We send tanks and cars around the world with no problem, but gold bars are impossible to ship? How did the gold get there in the first place?