Maybe look at both scenarios from a crisis perspective.
If you have floating exchange rates (FIAT) and you can inflate your money, you could end up in a hyperinflation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperinflation
If you follow a strict gold-backed standard you may end up in a deflationary spiral: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debt_deflation
If you pretend you have a gold-standard but pursue an inflationatory policy, things also get interesting http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bretton_woods_system
And with respect to buy silver, that is actually not that far off
"Today, there is no government agency, that would pay for the payment promises of Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Louis XIV, Peter the Great, Napoleon or Hitler. They were powerful men in their time, but no bank will cash their checks today. If you take a gold bar, however, that once lay in their treasuries, you will receive its equivalent value anywhere in the world. The durability and universality of gold gives it a money-like authority, that no other money has." (William Rees-Mogg – former chief editor of the London Times)