Fiat Foods and the Fiat Standard
RootCause Dispatch #11
At the RootCause Journal of Medicine we go deep down the rabbit hole to understand how and why people are sick.
But the biochemistry and physiology only tells us how things are going wrong. To understand why public health is such a train wreck , we have to explore societal and economic #RootCauses.
Few have a better understanding of these than Saifedean Ammous, economist of the Austrian school and scholar of Bitcoin.
Fiat Food is a chapter in his new book The Fiat Standard. It describes how the switch from sound, gold-backed money to a freely floating fiat money directly lead to explosion in the production of hyper-processed, nutrient-poor foods that are largely responsible for a global epidemic of obesity and metabolic dysfunction.
What are Fiat Foods?
Fiat is Latin for ‘let it be’ or ‘by decree’. Fiat foods, like fiat money, would not exist except by human engineering and top-down imposition by a centralized issuer (the Industrial Food Complex).
By definition, fiat foods have not existed for the 2.4 million year evolutionary period of the hominid primates, nor the 300 000 years that Homo sapiens has existed in its current form. This tweet by P.D. Mangan captures the point well:
The fiat foods outlined by Saifedean Ammous include:
Polyunsaturated and hydrogenated ‘vegetable’ and seed oils – soy, canola (rapeseed), sunflower, corn oils and margarine.
Processed corn – including high fructose corn syrup
Soy including soy lecithin
Low fat foods – including fat free and skim milk
Refined flour and sugar – including processed carbohydrates like breakfast cereals and white breads
A hit list of obesogenic, carcinogenic, mitochondrial damaging, insulin-provoking and xeno-estrogenic frankenfoods which have been specifically engineered to be hyper-palatable and induce hyperphagia.
Industrial food manufacturers have successfully hacked our evolutionarily conserved tendency to favor energy density and succeeded in addicting entire generations to substances that shave decades off their healthspan.
What does this have to do with the money?
Its a long story and I’d encourage you to read the chapter, or start with Saife’s first book The Bitcoin Standard for more context.
Briefly, in 1971 the US government defaulted on its debt obligations and was forced to remove gold backing from the US dollar. It created a fully fiat dollar with which to finance itself. Unrestrained by economic reality, the government was able to print money to subsidize entire industries.
When the prices of food skyrocketed in the aftermath of 1971, President Nixon, through his agricultural secretary Earl ‘Rusty’ Butz, subsidized corn growing and forced the centralization of farming away from self-sufficient, family farms towards giant corporate monocropping operations.
Corn and other fiat-foods were then substituted into economic inflation metrics like consumer price inflation in the place of nutrient-dense animal foods. The government intended to misrepresent the true cost of food and were successful in obfuscating the true impact of price inflation on society (which they themselves had created).
The rise of fiat money had myriad of downstream effects – by distorting economic incentives government intervention and regulatory capture has become the norm almost every aspect of society.
Fiat agriculture responsible for the destruction of topsoil and the rise of agricultural mega-corporations pushing proprietary seeds and industrial herbicides.
Fiat medicine has pushed pharmaceutical-based treatments and symptomatic management of chronic diseases while ignoring #RootCauses.
Fiat architecture responsible for the soulless tracts of cookie-cutter suburban housing.
Fiat science responsible for citation rings, loss of journalistic ethics and a university system completely disconnected from intellectual or economic reality.
See WTF Happened in 1971? for the full rundown.
What are the opposite of Fiat Foods?
Once we understand that many of the processed foods of modernity (that we’ve been told to eat) are artificial impositions of a distorted market, we can begin the search for the foods that we are supposed to eat.
Nourishing wholefoods that are not a product of top-down engineering and don’t require industrial manufacturing facilities or corporate marketing budgets.
Foods that humans naturally gravitated over hundreds of thousands of generations for their nutrient density:
Ancestral animal fats – lard, tallow, ghee (clarified butter)
Animal meat and seafoods
Full fat dairy products
Plants raised without the use of herbicides and processed by traditional practices like sprouting, fermentation and other preparation methods
It is not a coincidence that these foods are the least profitable for corporations and the most maligned in the fiat society.
How should I eat to avoid Fiat Foods?
If it survives for months in your pantry, don’t eat it.
If it comes in a packet with a paragraph list of ingredients, don’t eat it.
If it is an oil from a seed, don’t eat it and definitely don’t heat it.
If it is manufactured by a company with a CEO and shareholders, don’t eat it.
If does not rot or start to smell after several days unrefrigerated, don’t eat it.
If it is a whole food with a single ingredient, eat it.
If it is grown organically and doesn’t require industrial processing, eat it.
If it is raised by ranchers who use regenerative agricultural methods, eat it.
If it is wild caught, harvested or hunted (sustainably) eat it.
If it is made with love by small-scale artisanal operation or purchased from a farmers market, eat it.
Surviving Late-Stage Fiat Society
Fifty years after 1971 and the Nixon shock, inflation is once again rearing its ugly head. Governments around the world are spending money like its counterfeit. If you haven't yet considered why this is happening, or how money printing is affecting you, its time to wake up and pay attention.
Ditch the fiat foods and start eating an ancestrally appropriate diet of whole, preferably organic foods. You’ll finally be meeting your body’s nutritional needs and diverting your current trajectory towards obesity, infertility and chronic disease.
And you might want to look into that bitcoin thing.
The Rest Is Up To You….
— RootCause MD
February 16, 2022
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The Fiat Standard – Saifedean Ammous
The Bitcoin Standard – Saifedean Ammous
King Korn documentary, 2007
The Malignant Centralization of Agriculture, Healthcare and Nutrition — article
The Decentralized Revolution in Agriculture, Healthcare and Nutrition — article