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The Not-So-Great Silver Debate

The persuasive pieces of evidence in favor of silver manipulation were not exposed at a recent debate on silver.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Following the stunning remarks of CFTC Commissioner, Bart Chilton, who bluntly stated that Wall Street bankers had been attempting to "deviously" and "fraudulently" manipulate the silver market, Canada's BNN made its own attempt to mimic "The Great Gold Debate." In that previous event, veteran broadcaster Jim Puplava invited Jeffrey Christian of the CPM Group, and Bill Murphy of GATA (the "Gold Anti-Trust Action" committee) to "debate" whether the gold market was being manipulated.

Before I go on to discuss

"The Great Silver Debate," it's worth taking a moment to

review the prior debate on gold-market manipulation. Regular readers, and anyone who simply likes "good theater" will vividly recall that previous debate. In between all the scathing and demeaning remarks where Christian was allowed to ridicule Bill Murphy, Christian managed to supply listeners with confirmation of virtually everything that Murphy, and the dedicated crew of GATA had spent so many years attempting to establish.

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Given GATA's obvious "credentials" for such a debate, as soon as I heard about BNN's exercise, I immediately contacted GATA -- to ask them if BNN had invited them to participate in this event. With all of the insulting remarks which Christian had directed at Bill Murphy in the last debate, I certainly wouldn't have faulted GATA if they had declined to participate -- and be subjected to more of Christian's abuse.

Chris Powell of GATA assured me that no one from his organization had been invited. "Strike one" for BNN's attempt(?) to have a meaningful debate.

Of course, GATA isn't the only place where one could find someone with the experience, the expertise, and the credibility to ably argue the existence of manipulation in the silver market. After hearing that GATA had been deliberately excluded, I next contacted Ted Butler.

As anyone and everyone who understands the silver sector is aware of, Ted Butler is THE leading authority on manipulation of the silver market -- along with a great deal of other detailed research into this market, which he has compiled in his decades of exemplary work.

Mr. Butler assured me that he, too, had also been shunned as a "debate partner" for Christian. "Strike two" against BNN.

The foe for Christian selected by BNN was David Morgan. David Morgan is certainly a well-known name in the silver sector -- as one of the most conservative "silver bulls" in the entire sector, and someone who has never been viewed as an "authority" on silver manipulation.

Indeed, Morgan's recent work has centered on calling a "top" in the silver market at $22/ounce, and prior to that arguing that silver "inventories" are much greater than most people think -- directly contradicting my own analysis into this market: that silver inventories have been grossly and fraudulently exaggerated.

Given this background, it seems quite clear that BNN has resorted to the same, devious tactic used by the unscrupulous "promoters" of professional boxing: selecting an "opponent" (i.e. a "stiff") to go up against their own "fighter" -- so that they could be assured of a glorious victory. "Strike three" against BNN, and now on to the debate.

BNN chose two of its talking-heads to "host" the debate, including their "anchor" Frances Horodelski -- who boasts more than 20 years of executive experience with Canada's big-banks (much like Christian, himself, is a Goldman Sachs alumnus).

The "debate" began with Christian being asked to supply his own "spin" on Bart Chilton's stunning statement. He immediately pounced on the fact that Chilton had based his conclusion on "outside" material which he had read and observed concerning the blatant manipulation of the silver market -- and not on the views or findings of the CFTC's own investigators, while they are conducting a formal investigation into silver-market manipulation.

Christian maintained that because Chilton had refused to refer to the findings of an on-going investigation as the basis for his views, but rather had relied upon "tired, conspiracy-theorists" (such as GATA and Ted Butler) that no one should attach any credibility to the unequivocal opinion of one of the CFTC's Commissioners. Neither Morgan, nor either of the two BNN hosts saw the slightest flaw in Christian's "analysis." Let me enlighten these "experts".

First of all, one shouldn't need to hold a law degree to understand the simple fact that the one thing Bart Chilton could never do would be to comment on the internal findings of the CFTC's investigators during the course of an official investigation into silver-market manipulation while such an investigation is still ongoing. Indeed, had Chilton made the mistake of basing his remarks on the ongoing investigation of the CFTC's own staff, the duplicitous Christian would have immediately (and rightfully) criticized Chilton for "predjudicing the investigation" by stating a legal conclusion before his own investigators had made their final assessment.

It is utterly mind-boggling how people (such as Morgan and the two BNN hosts) could consider themselves competent to participate in a debate of this nature if they are so oblivious as to the workings of these administrative agencies that they were unable to immediately see the blatant flaw in Christian's "spin."

Of course, Christian's characterization of Chilton's remarks was not merely deceitful, but insulting (and even defamatory). Chilton occupies a position in Christian's sector which is much more important and prestigious than that of Christian himself: a senior official in one of the most important regulatory bodies in global markets. And yet here we have Christian publicly concluding that Chilton was so irresponsible and/or incompetent that he would make inflammatory remarks of this nature (while acting in his official capacity) based on nothing more than the opinions of "conspiracy nuts."

Once again, we see Christian's

modus operandi

in action: unable to state anything substantive in his repeated, public attempts to denounce the existence of precious metals manipulation, he consistently resorts to insulting and demeaning any and all other entities -- who present their own arguments with eloquence, logic, and mountains of "circumstantial evidence."

After only a minute and a half of BNN's nine-minute "Great Silver Debate," the four participants had already demonstrated their own lack of good faith in conducting this sham. With practically nothing of any substance to report from the debate, itself, I will devote an entire sequel to this piece by listing and briefly discussing the many persuasive pieces of evidence in favor of silver manipulation -- none of which was even mentioned, let alone "debated" in this farcical exercise.

This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.