REDNECK PERSPECTIVE: Tater tots and whiskey bank notes

By on May 12, 2015

Nothing heats up Alice, my Republican lover, like presidential politics. This year she’s supporting Rand Paul.

She stopped by my trailer last week and spent two hours physically expressing her political zeal. Some people hate that the presidential election cycle is continuous nowadays but I love it and was unbothered when Alice called me “Rand” in a moment ecstasy. Later, she explained her latest political infatuation to me.

“He’s cute,” she said. “And besides, he wants to eliminate the Federal Reserve and put America back on the gold standard.”

“Is that good?” I asked in an attempt to sound interested, informed and disdainful toward the seven sons of Rothschild, who, according to Alice, live in the basement of the Federal Reserve building and control the world’s finances.

“It would be so much simpler,” she said. “Before liberals created the Federal Reserve, each bank issued dollars without federal interference. The dollars varied in worth depending on how far the issuing bank was, geographically, from the point of sale as well as the perceived strength of the bank.”

“What about gold?” I asked.

“Each dollar banks issued was backed by gold held in the bank’s vaults,” she explained. “If the price of gold went up, each dollar was worth more; if it went down, dollars were worth less. The important thing is people had the freedom to choose what dollars they wanted to use, unlike today when honest Americans are forced to use dollars issued by the Federal Reserve.”

“So,” I said. “If America’s goods and services increase, there will be no corresponding increase to the money supply because the amount of gold does not increase, and a dollar from my bank may not be worth a dollar in Victor?”

“Or it could be worth more,” Alice said. “Idaho banks could choose to be on the potato standard, so value would vary depending on demand of tater tots.”

“That seems like a logical way to run the world’s largest economy,” I said. “We should have done this a long time ago.”

Deciding to get a jump-start on the whole money-issuing thing, I opened the First National Bank of Hog Island. Instead of using gold to back paper notes, I decided to use whiskey. People can bring in fifth- or gallon-jugs and receive dollars. In an effort to create financial instruments accessible to all, other non-depreciable assets will be considered for notes – like firearms, of course, and ‘57 Chevys, as they have shown an ability to appreciate on the long term. While beer has a specific expiration date, it will be allowed to back corporate paper and other short-term investments (real beer, not Lite beer). In an effort to attract investors from Teton Pines, fine wines will be taken for exchange, but with a slight “haircut” to protect bank investors. Let’s face it, if there is a world crisis and everything is in chaos, what will depositors want —gold, a glass of Pinot Noir, or a double shot of Wild Turkey?

Clyde Thornhill is a longtime Jackson resident, lifetime redneck and storyteller. Got a topic you would like our resident redneck to address, email

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