Friday, November 20, 2009

Blackstone Gold Brokers: Champions of the Non Sequitur

Here we go again with another of these "Invest your hard-earned money on the theory that the United States economy is on the verge of collapse" commercials. This one is from some company called Blackstone International, and it always leaves me scratching my head and wondering who decided to fire the editor before the final product was approved.

Testimonial #1: "I decided to take some of my IRA and buy gold from Blackstone International. Gold has increased 250% in the last eight years. My gold investment rose from $75,000 to $89,000. I am very happy with Blackstone International."

Um, say what? $75,000 to $89,000 is not an increase of 250%. It's an increase of just under 20%. Assuming that the price of gold HAS risen 250% in eight years, this woman clearly did not make her investment eight years ago. So, what's the point of telling us that the price of gold has risen 250% in eight years? What's the significance of an eight-year period, anyway? It's been eight years since 9/11- is that it? Wouldn't it have been equally relevant to tell us how much gold has increased in the last eighty years, or eight hundred?

Testimonial #2- "I bought my gold from Blackstone International. I wouldn't be surprised to see gold hit $2000 an ounce in the near future. Blackstone International is a company I can trust."

What is this, Haiku Day on the radio? What does buying gold from Blackstone International have to do with what the price of gold will do in the future? Why do I care what this guy's personal prediction is about the price of gold? Is he telling me that if I buy gold from some other company, the price of gold might NOT reach $2000 an ounce? Why do gold broker commercials make my head hurt so much?

More to the point, why don't these commercials just cut to the chase and urge us to bet against the American Economy, because the best news for people who invest in gold is the complete collapse of the world financial markets, followed by depression and unprecedented human misery? Maybe they think that would be too much of a downer?

Life is good for the gold brokers these days, though: they've made enough money to buy off pretty much every radio yakker on the planet, regardless of political ideology. Now maybe they could use just a little of that money to make a few decent commercials with logical, coherent messages, instead of ones featuring people who are apparently happy to spout whatever happens to pop into their heads while the recorder is running.


  1. Why would anyone believe that gold is always going to be valuable?

    Let's way there was some kind of cataclysm -- the destruction of the world economy, or a worldwide nuclear war or something. What's gold going to do for you then? Nothing, because who's going to want it?

    If the doom and gloom scenarios that these shysters use to sell gold ever came to pass, we'd be dealing with a barter economy that focused only on subsistence -- food, clothing, medicine, and shelter. At that point, it won't matter whether you had invested in stocks, bonds, pork bellies, gold, or commercial real estate -- they'll all be equally worthless.

  2. Well, excellent point. It would actually make more sense to invest in supplies of bottled water, or dried food, because stuff like that WILL have certain value in the event of a real collapse. People out there who think that their fricking Ron Paul Gold Coins are going to see them through the next economic cataclysm must have a serious screw loose.

  3. I love this blog. Here's a commercial that's been on a lot, and it really bugs me. I was hoping you could snark on it, if the complete selfishness of this woman bugs you as much as it bugs me. Self centered cow!

  4. The gold isn't for total economic meltdown, it's for inflation. Gold stays at relatively stable value as the dollar falls.