How do you assess worldwide demand for gold, and how a pending crisis could impact the supply of gold for investors?
We're going to run out. China has been a huge buyer of gold. Russia has been a huge buyer of gold. The Chinese are actually encouraging their citizens to buy gold, because they think they know what's coming in the West and it will certainly have ramifications in the East. More and more, gold vaults are being emptied. They're being sent to Switzerland. They're being recast from 400-ounce London bars to kilogram bars for Chinese distribution. The wealth is just going West to East. Now we're seeing that over and over again. Then the Chinese are also using those paper dollars to buy up as many Western assets as they can. I mean, Smithfield hams, as American company as that, all of a sudden it's a Chinese company. It doesn't look good for the West. Again, Rome wasn't built in a day, it didn't fall in a day, but today the world just moves much, much faster.
I don't know what the catalyst is going to be. There's no shortage of burning fuses around the world. You've got Syria in civil war. You've got Thailand now on the verge of civil war. Iraq is disintegrating. Afghanistan's a disaster. You have a nut job in North Korea, who apparently fed his Uncle to live dogs, even the Chinese have to be concerned about how are we going to control this guy he's got nuclear weapons. Yeah, you look around the world at all the different burning fuses and how many of them have to go off before it just sets off a chain reaction? For me the scary thing is, it's never the disaster you're looking at, it always comes from left field, something you're not looking at. Is it Pakistan and India? I don't know. There's something out there. No one was talking about the Sudan last year; we're talking about it now. No one was talking about West Africa last year, but now we're talking about possibly a million refugees. So, I don't know where it's going to come from, but there are catalysts all over the place. It won't take that many to cause people again, to have a flight to gold.