Friend or foe?



Continuing our theme of encouraging readers to examine the motivation of every person posting a story, opinion, stock tip, etc., I now wish to turn your attention to the silver Blogosphere itself. The last twelve months have seen a proliferation of new sites, many of them strangely uniform in their die-hard bullishness towards the gray metal.



A consensus has been reached on these sites: a wicked banking cartel is intent on robbing average Joes of their hard-earned wealth through the alleged manipulation of ‘paper silver’, and this treasonous activity can be thwarted only by those same average Joes buying more and more physical silver. This consensus on silver blogs has now become so homogenous, so wide-spread, and so dogmatic in its own axiomatic truths, that dissent is often brutally crushed in online discussions. Anyone questioning the existence of such a conspiracy, or who dares to suggest that silver might fall in price, is typically flamed off the site. At the same time, some of these sites do seem to genuinely care about the interests of their readers, and are thrillingly passionate about their subject. What should we make of all this?



Here at the Screwtape Files we try to examine, scrutinise and assess the claims and motivations of all who purport to be bringing us the truth. To date, however, we have not really addressed or questioned the backgrounds and motivations of some of the most popular silver blogs on the net. Logically, we should do so if we are serious in our efforts to establish a full picture. In the next few days we will be turning our attention to this issue. You may find what you read shocking, or be totally nonplussed by it and find it irrelevant. Regardless, we feel that all of us who are PM investors are entitled to have a firm idea of what lies behind some of those who seek to lead the way.



The timing of all this is key. Following the S&P downgrade, and the close-run battle to raise the US debt ceiling, most readers of this blog will be scratching their heads this weekend, wondering whether Monday will bring a PM crash or a moon-shot. The silver blogs are ablaze again – for the first time since April. Even good old WB has made a reappearance. There are plenty online who would advise you during this difficult time; alas some of these sources upon which we have come to rely are far from straight about their own origins and motivations.



The Screwtape Files has taken the heavy decision to apply the same scrutiny to this area of the silver community as it does to every other. Regardless of whether you condemn us or applaud us, we cannot continue to privilege ‘sacred’ sources of disinformation over lower hanging fruit.



Let the chips fall where they may.

JdA

8 comments:

Kid Dynamite said...

whoa! can't wait..

however:

"To date, however, we have not really addressed or questioned the backgrounds and motivations of some of the most popular silver blogs on the net."

why bother? why not just focus on exposing the truth behind the utter nonsense that they write on a daily basis? I mean, the stuff that they flat out make up and that demonstrates a gross misunderstanding of what is actually happening?

by that, I simply mean: focus on what they say, not who they are! (that's the credo of the Pseudonymous blogger: what I say is what's important, not who I am.)

that said, however, if you have links to who is funding/priming these false arguments perpetuated by the Silver Mafia, THAT is certainly relevant and I eagerly await your work... email me with questions.

Warren James said...

Motives, Means and Opportunity - a good forensic tool. The Internet as a publishing platform enhances opportunity and I guess as a society we have forgotten that 'accessible' isn't automatically equally 'credible'.

I guess we're saying 'motivations' though, because in many circumstances the folk who perpetuate the extreme stories are themselves entirely convinced of their version of the markets. A good bucket of cold water might wash away any pretence or at least reduce the exaggerations. Our process will invariably draw the ire of a few folk as we go, but ... we don't really care ... so long as it provokes open analysis and honest investigation (enough at least to warn people off buying $49/ounce silver using JPM credit cards :).

Bron said...

Looking forward to it.

In total unrelated news, did you see Mr Sprott is worth $1.3b http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/08/05/terence-corcoran-making-money-as-good-as-gold/

Jeanne d'Arc said...

KD,

"why bother? why not just focus on exposing the truth behind the utter nonsense that they write on a daily basis?"

It doesn't need to be 'either/or' in my view. Our aim with this blog, in so far as we have one, is to get to the truth behind what is said about the PM markets. What is said is crucial, of course, and we spend a lot of time on this. But who is saying it becomes important if they pretend to be something they are not (would you trust medical advice from a doctor if you found out that he wasn't really a doctor?), pretend to be independent when they're not, or have their own agenda which is at odds with the interests of their readers.

First article should appear soon. Assuming we're not all made bankrupt tomorrow ;-)

Kid Dynamite said...

JdA - I am looking forward to it. I guess I'm just hypersenstive to attempts to discredit the Person as opposed to The Argument.

however, there is certainly a lot of room to expose who might be behind this mass trend toward misinformation in the silver market, and who stands to benefit from it, which is what I think you're getting at.

Save_America1st said...

just curious since I'm new here and just saw your write-up about SGS.
Wondering, have you provided full background information of yourself and your other contributors before investigating and writing about other people's websites and backgrounds?
Like I said, just curious...maybe if you divulge all information about yourselves first it would lend more credibility to what you say about others.

Louis Cypher said...

I appreciate what you are saying and I'll counter by saying some of us prefer anonymity and some of us are there for the whole world to see. The biggest thing to keep in mind is we are not selling anything.
We don't promote any stocks. There are no ads from google here and we don't shake empty coffee cups in your face on daily basis.

Jeanne d'Arc said...

Save_America1st

The credibility of what I say about others is not in doubt, as it is all publically available information which you or anyone else can check for themselves.

Re my background: I don't know what you wish to know, but I'm more than happy to 'divulge'. I own no businesses, I sell no products, I have never offered financial advice. I have no financial qualifications. My education is in research, and my current day job is entirely unrelated to the field of PMs or investing more generally. I do not post on the web under any other name. I do not run a blog, and never have.

I would also wish to point out that everything in the SGS article relates to the disconnect between what is said publically and what is the truth. I did not choose, for example, to include non-relevant personal information.