by Simon Black: What
Are You Teaching Your Kids?
to be pessimistic on a day like today. Forty years ago on this very
day, Richard Nixon put a bullet into George Washington’s face,
cancelling the direct convertibility of dollars into gold and once
and for all ending any hope of an honest money system.
Over the past
four decades, the dollar has fallen 98% against the price of gold.
Politicians and central bankers pretend that inflation is not a
concern, but the rising cost of living around the world has prompted
people to such extremes that they’re willing to light themselves
on fire to protest government bungling.
the economic troubles in the world, though, I’m extraordinarily
optimistic for the future. You see, this morning I just concluded
our second annual Liberty and Entrepreneurship youth camp –
a five day event where my business partners and I put a group of
students from all over the world through an intensive, hands-on
‘value creation laboratory.’
that whenever there are problems in the world, there are always
opportunities to solve those problems and create value; we took
the students through practical exercises in how to spot these opportunities.
This included things like developing credible business plans without
making the common rookie mistakes that drive most businesses into
The camp culminated
in a series of group presentations about actual business ideas they
had come up with… and to be honest with you, every single one
of them was impressive. These weren’t silly, amateurish, rinky-dink
ideas like operating a summer lemonade stand, but rather creative
solutions to large-scale problems that actually have serious potential.
Let me give
you a few examples.
of our students, Philipe from Brazil, came up with a great idea
to address a real need in his home country: elderly care. Brazil’s
rapidly growing middle class now has the disposable income to provide
better in-home care to its elderly parents, and he devised an elegant
solution that is just screaming to be deployed. I’m eager to
Julian from New Zealand, came up with a creative solution to personal
security challenges that plague both travelers and worried parents
of small children. His idea makes a twist on GPS tracking, and if
he takes the necessary steps to build this business, I’m convinced
it could be worth $20 million to a big satellite company in a few
Kim from Germany, recognized that the growing appeal of precious
metals in the broader consumer market warrants a higher level of
quality in portfolio tracking services. His team came up with some
extremely clever ideas for a precious metals portfolio app, and
given where we are in the commodity’s growth phase, the idea
has significant merit.