As the world continues to be an increasingly unstable place, ads for buying gold abound. I am going to say several things I have said in the past, but I think they bear repeating.

Believing in the value of gold is no different from believing in the value of currency. Gold has no more intrinsic value than diamonds or paper or onions or lucky charms cereal- which, in point of fact, is at least magically delicious. If people lose confidence in any one of these things as being desirable, they are worth nothing. They have no value, except that as a current fad, people believe that they do.

I believe that it makes much more sense to eliminate the middle-man (currency), and stock up on what you actually would need in a crisis. Here is my thinking: Most people want a certain valuable thing (let’s say gold) because they think it will allow them to get what they need in an oh-my-gosh situation. So if the dollar becomes devalued or the economy collapses or the zombies attack, gold would let them buy what they need. They could use gold to get food and water and toilet paper and whatnot. But why not just use your money now to buy extra food and water and toilet paper and whatnot? Why would you hoard gold so that in dangerous times ahead you could venture out into precarious places to fight the crowds for scarce resources and try to trade your gold for what you need when you could have those things safe and snug in your house?

If you can afford gold you can afford to start work on a pretty significant underground cistern to collect water for your family. If you are looking to barter something of value it is more likely that people will need tubes of antibiotic ointment than snips off of gold pieces. Gold is pretty and all, but it doesn’t feed your family and it doesn’t meet any concrete need if there is a real crisis going on around you.

The ads for buying gold sound very persuasive, and the ones I have heard are done by some very credible people who should know better. But some basic thinking about how you live and the things you and your family need will point you in the direction of what you really might want if things go bad around you. For us I know that the last thing I want if society gets dicey is to have to send *h out into the madness to be snatching batteries off of shelves and fighting over the last bottle of aspirin in the store. For us, we want a ready supply of bullets, but your choices may look very different from ours. The point is to do some thinking and then put that into practice. The one thing I know we don’t want when chaos is swirling around us is gold.

The added benefit of being prepared in this way is that everything we have is usable right now. As long as we rotate our stock we can eat our food and drink our water and use our medicine and nothing is just sitting around being stuffed under the mattress. We don’t have to worry that in a grid-down situation we could potentially be sitting on a pile of useless metal, or that the only thing left in the stores is some icky thing that doesn’t suit our family.

If you still think buying gold is the right choice for you then you should go right ahead and buy it. But I definitely think it’s worthwhile to get another perspective out there.