Sunday, March 29, 2009

AIG's collateral damage stokes Fort Knox questions

From TimesOnline:

It is said to be the most impregnable vault on Earth: built out of granite, sealed behind a 22-tonne door, located on a US military base and watched over day and night by army units with tanks, heavy artillery and Apache helicopter gunships at their disposal.

Since its construction in 1937 the treasures locked inside Fort Knox have included the US Declaration of Independence, the Gettysburg Address, three volumes of the Gutenberg Bible and Magna Carta.

For several prominent investors and at least one senior US congressman it is not the security of the facility in Kentucky that is a cause of concern: it is the matter of how much gold remains stored there - and who owns it.

They are worried that no independent auditors appear to have had access to the reported $137 billion (£96 billion) stockpile of brick-shaped gold bars in Fort Knox since the era of President Eisenhower. After the risky trading activities at supposedly safe institutions such as AIG they want to be reassured that the gold reserves are still the exclusive property of the US and have not been used to fund risky transactions.

In other words, they want to be certain that the bullion has not been rendered as valueless as if a real-life Goldfinger had stolen it.

“It has been several decades since the gold in Fort Knox was independently audited or properly accounted for,” said Ron Paul, the Texas Congressman and former Republican presidential candidate, in an e-mail interview with The Times. “The American people deserve to know the truth.”

Mr Paul has so far attracted 21 co-sponsors for a Bill to conduct an independent audit of the Federal Reserve System - including its claims to Fort Knox gold - but an organisation named the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (GATA) is taking a different approach.

It has hired the Virginia law firm William J.Olson, PC, to test President Obama's promise to bring “an unprecedented level of openness” to the Government and next month it will file several Freedom of Information requests for a full disclosure of US gold ownership and trading activities.

“We're taking the President at his word,” said Chris Powell, of GATA. “If you go online you can find out how to build a nuclear weapon but you won't find any detailed records on central gold reserves.”

All the gold in Fort Knox is worth $137 billion dollars, and the taxpayer gave more of that out with AIG.

So maybe, some of the people don't take the Government at their word, when the say "Trust us."

But an open audit on Fort Knox?

It will never happen.

That you can "trust us" on!

And stories like this, are just being used to make anyone that wants transparency in the financial dealings done on behalf of the taxpayer, to appear to be in bed with Oliver Stone!

But somebody wants to know these answers, and they want the Government to give a real audit.

Heck, we know what the Gold ETF has in it's vaults. They have 36,248,334 ounces worth $33.5 billion dollars.

That can be audited but Fort Knox can't?


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