James Turk: An Open Letter to the Bullion Desk

Section:

5:30p ET Saturday, December 11, 2004

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Here's a report from the heart of the developing
world -- Nigeria -- that is encouraging and
touching. Encouraging, because it shows that
the government is just beginning to sense how
the country is being ripped off by the imperial
currency, the dollar; touching, because it shows
the struggle of people who are trying to make
their way in the world through sweat and
muscle, by making and growing real things,
rather than by financial manipulation and
parasitism.

We Americans like to think of our country as
a force for good in the world, and certainly
our domestic political liberty is probably
unsurpassed as an example. But does setting
that example of political liberty entitle
Americans to claim 80 percent of the world's
savings for their own largely excess
consumption?

The deputy chairman of the Central Bank of
Russia, Oleg Mozhaiskov, raised this issue
in his speech to the London Bullion Market
Association in Moscow in June, and in its
commentary Friday the Daily Reckoning
noted that Americans on average earn 25
times as much as the people of China do
and yet the United States is borrowing from
China.

Gold is important not so much for itself as
for being a part of great issues of fairness
and justice.

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

* * *

Dollar Slide: Govs Consider Other Currencies,
Invite Obasanjo Over Excess Crude Fund

By Josephine Lohor
This Day, Lagos, Nigeria
Friday, December 10, 2004

http://allafrica.com/stories/200412100693.html

ABUJA, Nigeria -- Following the depreciating value of
the dollar, the National Economic Council (NEC),
chaired by Vice President Atiku Abubakar with all
the state governors as members, is considering the
possibility of using other currencies as benchmark
for Nigeria's earnings.

Rising from its meeting yesterday at the State House,
the NEC also invited President Olusegun Obasanjo
to its next meeting so that a "firm" decision could be
taken on the funds that accrued from the sale of
excess crude oil.

The governor of Akwa Ibom State, Obong Victor
Attah, told State House correspondents shortly after
the meeting that "we looked at the problem also of
the depreciating value of the dollar, which is what we
use in benchmarking, and eventually, we believe, we
would have to get into a basket of currencies for
keeping our money in future, rather than buying it
only in one currency."

Attah said that there was urgent need for the Debt
Management Office to make available the exact
amounts of monies being owed by the states, who
borrowed what and for what reasons, to reduce the
barrage of accusations of financial recklessness
heaped on state governors.

"On the issue of debt management, there is an
argument between some states and the Debt
Management Office about the exact amount owed
by the various states. There is a need to know when
this money was borrowed, who borrowed, and for
what purposes."

Attah said this had become necessary "because it is
becoming very popular for everybody to attack the
office of the state governments that we borrow money
recklessly and spend money recklessly. What we
know is that a lot of this borrowing took place even
before we came into office."

Attah noted that "we took a decision that we will
invite Mr. President to the next meeting of the
Economic Council so that firm decisions could be
taken on how best to handle the issue of what is
popularly called excess crude oil."

"But in the meantime, the National Economic
Management team has been asked to come up
with proposals about how to manage the issue of
this excess crude and the interest that may
accrue."

Accompanied by the governors of Kano, Kwara,
and Oyo states, Alhaji Ibrahim Shekarau, Bukola
Saraki, and Rasheed Ladoja, respectively, Attah
stated that the Economic Council decided that
"there is need to co-operate with the Federal
Government and save some of this money (funds
from sale of excess crude oil) for the day when
prices may crash."

He said the meeting also agreed that states should,
like the Federal Government, ensure the attainment
of the Millennium Development Goals. According to
him, state governments were also asked to restore
Nigeria's past glory in agricultural development by
ensuring the rapid growth of at least three major
crops each in which they have advantage.

He added that "we (NEC) also agreed that there
has to be some monitoring by the committee on
the Millennium Development Goals. It is
recommended that much as the Federal Government
is doing something about it, the states should also
indeed do something about its attainment.

"Earlier on, we had accepted that agriculture is the
largest possible employer, particularly in the rural
areas. We also agreed that there is the need to
restore our past glory in agricultural development.
So we should look very closely at what had been
suggested and accepted that every state should
come up with three major crops for which it has
advantage to ensure the growth and development
of these crops."

Governors who attended the meeting include those
of Kogi, Kano, Kwara, Benue, Cross River, Ebonyi,
Taraba, Imo, Osun, Delta, Edo, and the Deputy
Governors of Nasarawa and Lagos States.

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----------------------------------------------------

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