15th October 1941, evening
Remedies against inflation—The example of Frederick the Great—The economists make a mess of everything.
In 1933, the Reich had eighty-three million marks’ worth of foreign currency. The day after the seizure of power, I was called upon to deliver immediately sixty-four millions. I pleaded that I knew nothing about the whole business, and asked time to reflect.
At that point, one must intervene. Even to Schacht, I had to begin by explaining this elementary truth: that the essential cause of the stability of our currency was to be sought for in our concentration camps. The currency remains stable when the speculators are put under lock and key. I also had to make Schacht understand that excess profits must be removed from economic circulation.
I do not entertain the illusion that I can pay for everything out of my available funds. Simply, I’ve read a lot, and I’ve known how to profit by the experience of events in the past. Frederick the Great, already, had gradually withdrawn his devaluated thalers from circulation, and had thus re-established the value of his currency.
All these things are simple and natural. The only thing is, one mustn’t let the Jew stick his nose in. The basis of Jewish commercial policy is to make matters incomprehensible for a normal brain. People go into ecstasies of confidence before the science of the great economists. Anyone who doesn’t understand is taxed with ignorance! At bottom, the only object of all these notions is to throw everything into confusion.
The very simple ideas that happen to be mine have nowadays penetrated into the flesh and blood of millions. Only the professors don’t understand that the value of money depends on the goods behind that money.
One day I received some workers in the great hall at Obersalzberg, to give them an informal lecture on money. The good chaps understood me very well, and rewarded me with a storm of applause.
To give people money is solely a problem of making paper. The whole question is to know whether the workers are producing goods to match the paper that’s made. If work does not increase, so that production remains at the same level, the extra money they get won’t enable them to buy more things than they bought before with less money.
Obviously, that theory couldn’t have provided the material for a learned dissertation. For a distinguished economist, the thing is, no matter what you’re talking about, to pour out ideas in complicated meanderings and to use terms of Sibylline incomprehensibility.