What’s Jim Rickards’ pitch for “Electrum” really about?

Looking into the ad for Strategic Intelligence that promises "America’s FIRST Gold-Based 'Alternative Currency'"

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, September 22, 2016

Regular investors are getting interested in gold again, after the big run it had in the first half of this year… and many of us also remember the ludicrous returns that many folks got from buying bitcoin early on… so it’s only natural that this ad puts our greed receptors into overdrive:

“The time to get in on this NEW Gold-based Renegade ‘Alternative Currency’ investment is now, while it is still cheap… and relatively unheard of.”

The ad is for Strategic Intelligence, which is the “entry level” newsletter from Jim Rickards over at Agora (the same letter he was pitching when he promised “D-Day for the US Dollar on September 30” last month. Here’s the intro:

“26 years before the birth of Bitcoin, three rogue entrepreneurs created a radical new investment. A venture that turned every $10 stake into $11,899 over 19 years. It began…

“Electrum: America’s FIRST Gold-Based ‘Alternative Currency’

“99.99% of Americans don’t even know this ‘alt currency’ sub-niche even exists, yet it could make you an absolute fortune over the next 12-24 months. Here’s a rare peek inside…”

So, naturally, the question for the Thinkolator is “what the heck is he talking about?” Let’s dig into the clues so we can figure it out and try to explain things a bit for you… without charging $49 or $79 or whatever it is that Rickards is asking for his “front end” newsletter (I call these “front end” or “entry level” letters because they’re the first step in the marketing funnel that gets you interested in their “back end” newsletters — in this case Rickards’ Currency Wars, Intelligence Triggers or Gold Speculator services, each of which cost $3,000 a year).

So what is this “Electrum” alternative currency that Rickards says was first created in 1983? Here’s some more from the ad:

“You see, this unique investment is like bitcoin, only better…

“A LOT better.

“It’s digital.

“It can’t be manipulated – or ‘created out of thin air’ – by any government.

“And it’s OPEN to the public…

“But that’s about where the similarities end.

“You see, what makes ‘America’s FIRST Renegade Alternative Currency Investment’ so unique is that it’s also based on assets like gold and silver…

“And it gets better…

“This investment can pay out massive streams of income, up to hundreds of dollars per month, in some cases.”

“Hundreds of dollars per month,” of course, is a meaningless statement unless you know how much is invested in this “Electrum” … but we’ll let that pass for the moment. What other clues do we get about what this “Renegade Alternative Currency Investment is?

“Just by taking part in this alternative currency sub-niche since it first went public, for example, it would have been p