The new season of Brad Meltzer′s Decoded kicked off last night asking a big question, is there any gold in Fort Knox? Many people say Fort Knox is empty, that all of the gold has been sold off or is in the hands of other central banks. Nobody has done a public audit since 1974 of the gold at Fort Knox. Fort Knox was built after FDR made ownership of gold bullion illegal in 1933, storing all of the confiscated gold. So Brad′s team of Buddy, Scott and Mac head first to Washington, DC seeking answers. They met with David Ganz, a journalist and was actually present at the 1974 audit. He raises a disturbing issue. The Treasury Department periodically releases a balance sheet of all assets and liabilities. The value of the gold assets has not changed in decades, despite market fluctuations in price. Why?
Is the federal government lying about how much gold is in Fort Knox? Chris Powell tells the team he thinks so and he demands a new public audit. He tells them that it is easier to get nuclear weapon secrets than information from the Federal Reserve Bank. Powell goes on to accuse the government of using the bullion to suppress the value of gold on the open market. He who controls a nation′s currency, controls that nation. Forget about getting a Freedom of Information Act request, too. Legal expert Kevin Goldberg tells Scott that the federal government has nine exemptions to the FOIA law.
The gang then goes to Kentucky and meets with Craig Hulet, former armorer at Fort Knox. Craig tells the troop that his supervisor instructed him never to issue ammunition to any of the guards. Why bother? There is no gold in Fort Knox! The security plan is one of allowing any raiders inside, then sealing them up in the vault as they await their final disposal.
Pretty much the rest of the show follows two paths of thinking. Either Fort Knox is completely empty of gold, or the amount of gold is greatly reduced. The government is lying to us either way in order to prevent economic chaos, like the collapse of the U.S. dollar. The question of doing a new, public audit of the gold in Fort Knox may also cause a collapse in itself. Brad Meltzer of Decoded sums up the Fort Knox gold mystery eloquently by comparing it to the book, The Wizard of Oz, which some say was actually about gold. In the end, the heroes find a corrupt politician behind the curtain, lying and manipulating everyone. Our economy is largely based on trust and psychology. May as well be water and oil.