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Let me put it this way: I’m the only guy left in the neighborhood that grows anything. And it’s a shock that even I do or know how, since it costs me a lot of scarce money and a lot of valuable time. I may also be one of the few who could still bake the town’s bread from air-yeast. But I won’t take gold.
First, they don’t have any, so it’s pointless. But even if I took gold, then everyone in town knows I own gold. It’s too dangerous. Over time, all their gold is in my house and they’re looking at me. So if I, who have the town’s only (garden) seeds and only (garden) crops, who is the only one who makes and grows food, won’t take gold for food, tell me again how useful gold is.
Now if only I could ship that money out to a safer area and be part of a wider trading system, I could safely trade with my town all day long, and everybody eats. You tell me how it works. In “Dying of Money” by Jens O. Parsons, Berlin farmers were sitting on their food because it was too dangerous to bring to market and didn’t need to trade for that 3rd piano. That was still under a silver/gold-coin system with a hundredweight of metal in every county. Yet they were using theft and murder to distribute goods instead.
That is quite true. However what do you do if, like Venezuela, the local bakers have no flour because nothing is made locally anymore? You need to ship that gold to the shipper, the grinder, the farmer. How do you do that? Hitler and Stalin and Maduro are going to be everywhere in between. This may sound crazy, but we’ve never had a world where the materials for survival are not local, even national. How are the Americans going to get transformers, radios, shoes, copper, lead, car parts? “Globalization” has insured that the middle men are everywhere and each nation’s needs for survival are 5,000 miles away. This is what Venezuela found out: with the country in disarray, they needed to import things. Yes, they can be bought on the black market for gold –or easier with greenbacks– but they can be bought directly with less premium if you have an operational de-facto worldwide bank-transfer system. But again, that’s within a window. Easiest is of course a paycheck direct-deposit tied to a debit card, all credit, all virtual. Moving down through paper checks to cash-purchases, then to gold and even back to barter and family favors all the way to bullets and violence. Bitcoin works in only one of those windows, but then, so does gold. Gold was less useful in both Puerto Rico and Venezuela, but is more useful under Stalin, or quite probably in Syria and Libya. BTC is probably useful in Ukraine but not Puerto Rico. It depends on the problem you’re trying to solve.
Is gold going to be more reliable than Bitcoin? Almost certainly. A donkey breaks less than a car as well, but that doesn’t mean I don’t own one. But like I said, if there’s nothing in your neighborhood to buy, or having gold will get you killed, it can be useful to have an invisible option that’s tradable worldwide. How will you get your palatial estate worth of gold across the Austrian border, Mr. VonTrapp? In the meantime, do you really think the border guard is going to accept bitcoin? Horses for courses.
To bring up the bitcoin link from yesterday, he seemed only to be saying that money is the unit you think of prices in. That’s both easiest and hardest to change since it’s entirely psychological. While true, not a functional pivot point to hang your hat on. You start pricing in other currencies when you use them more. No doubt Europeans used to price in 2-3 currencies all the time, and we know many South Americans do, as they use their own currency and black market US$. Oddly, BTC people are already mentally pricing in BTC, most commonly concerning crypto exchange rates.
Nevertheless, it’s not nothing. How to look at it? Well, we can use P.R. as an example. What worked there? BTC was pretty much shut down, a zero in the recovery, as although in theory you can move crypto on paper, or phone-to-phone, in reality no one does. Gold, however, was at a steep discount to cash. Maybe not as much as pawned guitars, but unpleasant. Cash remains king.
But let’s not stop there. How’s it going in my favorite case Venezuela? You have official currency at a steep and rising discount that hard to change. Cash is not king there. US$ is probably most taken, but very hard to get. And how do you price, as the author suggested was a necessary function? You can’t. Not in US$, not in Bolivar. Yet there is money.
How is gold there? Fine, except that food is more valuable, and having gold (or gasoline) will get you killed. If there’s one gold coin and one chicken in the ruined neighborhood, the chicken is more valuable for dinner. Gold is only good for exchange, but the ports and other infrastructure are shut down. You know what is useful, though? Bitcoin. Even aside from the free-electric BTC mining, Bitcoin isn’t visible to be robbed, and isn’t locked into the physical neighborhood it resides. Citizens who get ahold of it order food delivered in from Amazon.com, breaking the idiotic government blockade. So in their case, with electric up, BTC is MORE valuable than gold or US$. So it depends on the situation.
The one problem they definitively don’t have is which currency to price in. They could care less. Pricing and long-term planning is a far higher level than pure exchange, and in any case, it hardly matters anymore since any PC, even your phone will have instant and perfect exchange calculations, rendering the “thought-about-pricing” somewhat moot.
If critical resources are all out-of-country, be it food or shoes, then to survive, they must be imported — at least in any proposed transition period. For them to move, it requires the middlemen.
So if you annoy the international middlemen, well, then you may not get your critical goods. This is your globalization. The opposite of which is nationalism and sovereignty.
The Bitcoin article is interesting and true. It’s amazing the aggregate “mining” of BTC really adds up. As Bitcoin was the first, and Satoshi anticipated leaps and bounds in processing power — and presumably electric usage — this couldn’t be entirely avoided. Now that BTC has set the way, most other tokens focus on lower power consumption (and costs to their network) but that itself has tradeoffs.
Here’s the real takeaway though: Financial Trust is so valued, so necessary, that the planet is actually willing to spend a month’s salary per transaction to avoind the fraud, theft, and corrupt front-running of the existing bank system. That’s a stunning indictment, and why they’re going to lose to cryptos: They’re stealing too much. Nor, as we’ve seen with their worldwide insolvency, can they simply steal less and come back to honesty and an even keel, an honest business model.
Now a month’s electric may be a lot to you and I, but it’s nothing in the finacial world. The front-running HFT’s probably take that $100 or whatever in seconds. Bitcoin has also chosen to focus on large, secure transactions. So $100 tax to escrow a container ship is LESS than the banks are charging. That’s the amazing part. Because otherwise, what would be the driver for Bitcoin?
Sometimes you just find a humdinger, eh? But mostly near the end.
Macroeconomic conditions are stable and favorable in Japan, 500 miles from Pyongyang? There may have been something in the paper about that recently. This journalist may need to read more.
Small is beautiful, and diverse is the fashion, right? But there’s no free lunch.
Suppose countries devolve to local, on the scale that all the Catalonias, who are only marginally different, all become independent. Cornwall, Wales, Wallonia, Basques, everyone. And why is this promoted? Because WalMart, Apple, Google, Lockheed, Boeing, GazProm remain the same size. So Catalonia with a population of 7M — or one world city — is going to bring these MegaCorps(tm) to heel? No. The corporations will then dictate world law and policy to the nations, the way they do when they site a WalMart in Muncie, turning democracy to a non-representational sham worse than the EU. Corporations used to have to get a yearly license, even an act of Parliament to exist, and this is why.
I’m not against smaller countries, and I deeply dislike the worldwide homogenization of culture, but there are consequences. You can’t go here unless you’re going to get together, pull their (banking) licenses and bring them to heel. And since the drift for 300 years has been the opposite, you’ve got to tell me you’ve got a plan, or you’re trading an accountable master for an unaccountable one. That’s the same thing that ended Feudalism and why: in Feudalism the serfs owed the master, but the master also owed the serfs. They had serious responsibilities to their people most took seriously that could bankrupt them, as you saw in some episodes of “Downton Abbey.” The reason the industrial revolution and money society was so great was the lords could now take the money, and default on the social responsibility that came with it. It happened, and people starved. You can see “Tess of the d’Urbervilles” or and Dickens movie to see what happened. Society was crushed, people were thrown off the land and died by the thousands or millions, transported to Australia, lost in wars of desperate men like “Sharpe’s,” the whole ball. I’m using movies for easy illustration, but the underlying history is true.
The Corporations would love, have planned, and very nearly succeeded in wresting legal control of the world legal sovereignty with the PPT and the TTIP. That would have been easy had certain unfortunate nations been less strong.
“When the Gods would curse us they answer our prayers.”
Note again Russia is pushing down the exchanges, not the cryptos. Like the NYSE and everywhere else on earth, the exchanges are fractional, riggable, and would end up replacing the crooked, centralized system we have with a more perfect crooked, centralized system. Only cryptos with a majority of traction in the people, not exchanges, might avoid this. Might. Note that you basically can’t stop cryptos, because you can text someone the keys or write them on a napkin. You’d shut down the internet to entirely stop them. But that’s not the goal here, or Russia and the U.S. would act differently toward them.
Note NYC is the one of the blessed cities, and nearly the richest. So if 10% of the richest are homeless the U.S. is a) the richest freest nation on earth or b) not.
Guardian again. Hey mates, the government CAN take total control of the economy; can you list the few times in history that happened, and what happened after? Because 99 & 44/100ths of the time, it didn’t ultimately turn out good. But this one time, if the government controls everything: voting, military, finance, factories, agriculture, nothing bad will happen. It’s not like the present governments and pool of ministers are, I don’t know, “a group of cynical people disconnected from human, political and cultural concerns – obsessed with numbers and them[selves] alone.” It’s not like as bad and immoral as the population is, the leaders have proven themselves to be worse, even in the increasing desperation and death of their people worldwide. No. Trust the Guardian. They’ve never lead you wrong. *cough*bailout*cough* *cough*Iraq War*cough* *cough*EU Treaty*cough* *cough*Libya*cough* ahem. I believe in miracles. This one time it’ll work.
The reply, I kid you not, in the vein of Johnathan Swift:
“My response to Meijer is this: At DiEM we have moderate…proposals…” Indeed. I do not wish to see his extreme proposals.
Follows an enormous fascination with government that will give him the power to force people to behave as he wishes, because he sees himself as smarter and better than us. “people know something is rotten but most do not understand sufficient analytical capacity and discernment to understand what is rotten.” (sic. yes, he dumbed the sentence on the dumbs.) Poor us. If we only had a brains.
” post-EU Europe will be a place where life for the majority tends to be nasty, brutish and short…” overlooking entirely that except for the blessed few like himself, life IN the EU is presently nasty, brutish, and short, arguably worse than 2001 when the Euro started. 50% youth unemployment in many countries? Eastern Europe treated like an African colony? Check yourself.
“By eradicating local nationalism we don’t mean that all national consciousness should be eradicated. …Somebody can be proud to be Texan and speak in the Texan manner but no Texan will tell you that being Texan is superior to being an American.” Strangely wrong, as Texans will tell you they ARE superior, and it’s one of those pivotal things Europeans regularly misjudge about why America’s Federalism works. Still, it’s a simple fact one probably ought to know before you rest your pan-national foundation on it as they have.
Continuing his racism and flights of awesomeness, “Let’s face it. The vast periphery in the south and east of Europe is underdeveloped and needs to be civilized.” I’m certainly glad to hear Prague and Vienna and Rome will be civilized one day. Perhaps Belgium with 1.76 murders can show Austria how to “civilize” their murder rate of 0.71. Perhaps his tone is one reason Eastern Europe feels increasingly reluctant to join the “family” of “all equals”, except of course, all the east, most of the south, and a bunch of others who are savages to be shown the one true (German) path, or else.
Think I’m kidding? “We should accept that Berlin is the only capital…” Really? I remember a former Chancellor who proposed the same thing. Do you remember his name?
Do I overstate my case? “Islam is all about wasteful production too. Wasteful production of human beings in particular.” Perhaps not. So does he also cover the other party planks, for instance religion? Why yes: “…clergymen are lazy people with no use in society…Pluralistic societies are de facto polytheistic.” So there is no religion if it’s Christian, that’s superstitious and silly…except for his one true religion of many (German) gods of course, which is self-evident and good. Let me try not to waste any more valuable time on this gentleman, who is the one true and self-evident lunatic, and a danger to life in Europe and perhaps on earth.
Link is posting strangely. Try this:
Dross is a poster on DiEM25 without a lot of posts, I don’t believe he runs DiEM. But I think what’s striking is how he has internalized and encapsulates the “reasonableness” of the EU position, that is, to control everything, every human action, everywhere, at every time, for everyone’s own good, right down to when they may, and mayn’t have sex, in the style of Dolores Umbridge. Because he, and people like him, aren’t mere humans making decisions like we migrants and voters are, they are the Ubermensch, who are smarter and better and stronger, and we should worship and obey them as the gods, Plato’s philosopher kings.
That position is anti-human and tyrannical in the nth degree. It is in fact, insane. The mindset is the root of all evil, communist, fascist (but I repeat myself), royalist, or statist. My country was founded on the principle that “All men are created equal”, and dummies like this guy, who believe they alone decide “[in] Europe consumption is limited and breeding is not encouraged” and “breed[ing] more with better safety, is undesirable.” are entitled to nothing. They are no better men than anyone else and while free to promote their ideas, have no license whatsoever to tell anyone what to do unless the people wish to cooperate voluntarily. And that is exactly why the government, who would happily enforce this gentleman’s eugenics, and is happily doing so worldwide as we speak, must be as limited as possible, being the best possible advertisement FOR nationalism, democracy, and arms, and AGAINST a Federal EU, or World government.
This guy is the poster child of why men are forced to take up arms, and therefore why they are entitled to do so.
More magic thinking: we don’t grow sheep, spin wool, weave, and cut clothes, we just print them into existence on our keyboard, says Bill Black. Honest! As many as we want. There’s no work AND no downside, just like the Sorcerer’s Apprentice!
Funny, rural beekeepers don’t have nearly the problem of the professional ones. Maybe because when you fly insects into fields of insect poisons, insects die? And if you keep insects away from world-wide environmental poisons, they die a lot less? And hey, how about the rest of us? If we didn’t poison every field, every crop, every gene, running off into every stream every kid plays in, to every water a mother drinks might we be healthier?
Constant, smart, caring, but omg IYI-class on all things living. Let’s start back a step: TAE reports on the astonishing imbedded oil in modern food production. Well, a great deal of that is fertilizer. Would you like to remove the fertilizer and drop the dangerous, high-investment, concentrated, overseas, choke-point dependency on petroleum? Yes? Then you need animals for your fertilizer. But but but but…?
But about a dozen things: we have no way — none — that I know of, to produce anything like the volume we need using organic non-animal methods. If you tried compost, you’d waste all your acres and tractor-diesel turning compost foothils in the volumes you need for America’s 1,000, 10,000 acre fields. Ain’t happening, not even in a 100 acre scale. Animals are your only high-speed composters. And guess what? They self-replicate, AND are a food source. Cool, huh? Also without desertifing the fields, you must MUST let them fallow at least 1 in 4. So 25% of your crop yield per year? Gone. Oh wait: unless you have animals, then you turn the fallow year to hay and feed it to them to turn into the high-value compost (manure) you MUST have. Then you eat the composters rather than let them die of old age and vet bills. Rather than paying a coalmine and steel mill to make metal composters, then a junker to repair, melt, and dispose them. Which do you prefer? And choosing a life-oriented process undercuts factory farms and presses the return to smaller farms and families. And the smaller scale means less villainy in conditions! The horror.
And you want to make meat in a vat? Is this like the same unfathomably-bad-at-math people who thought we’d have solar panels (at 15%) and ship the electric to cities (at 20% loss) to run LEDs (at 30% efficiency) to grow hydroponic lettuce in a high-rise? How high do you have to be to think THAT’S a good idea? You create the product with most efficiency at the point of sunlight, looking for maximum energy concentration before shipping by expensive, rare petroleum. So…animals again. I swear to God these guys are trying to kill us all. Thank God we’re not on a spaceship or we’d have mutinied by now for sheer survival.
No, lab meat is not going to be more energy efficient for multiples of the reasons that piping sunlight into lightbulbs isn’t going to be efficient. Want a few more? Okay, what were you planning to grow in western Texas and say, upper Greece or the Spanish plains? What were you planning on growing in the steep hills of Colorado or Austria? Kale and green beans? Seriously people: no. These marginal lands are not well-suited or profitable for the crops that you’d grow in the climate and good soils of the outer rim of Paris or SanFancisco. You can’t transport kale from a field below Durango and make a profit, no matter how much oil you waste. You know what you CAN grow on distant, 45deg slope, in bad soil, where the frost comes sudden? Sheep, maybe. Cattle. Buffalo, you know, meat. Unless you’d like to take that 30% of marginal land offline for human consumption altogether, and kill, you know, 2.25 billion people. ‘Cause you can with ignorance, you know. And they are. Will all their brilliant, expert ideas.
Please for the love of God stop helping and just leave rural, food-making people alone. You’ve already stolen all their money, culture, children, and hope, can’t you just do this one thing to save your own city-Univertity expert lives? I promise it will be the smartest thing you’ve ever done.
I was walking down the street the other day
A woman stopped me
She said: “Why are you looking so down in the mouth?”
And I told her:
This is a burnt out town
New Emperor, same clothes,
And the Mayor is cooking the books
while the filthy money flows.
This is a burnt out town
Is full of dirty looks
Now even my best friends are turning into crooks
This is a burnt out town
It’s going down but no one knows.
And here I am, stealing gas with a garden hose. –Tom Petty (roughly)
What’s not working for Keen is exactly that there is no risk, no pricing, and no markets. That means by definition the markets and their economies are run by Soviet-style Central Planning and Central Control.
When that happens, anything you say about “markets”, “economies”, “capitalism” or “prediction” goes right out the window. There is now only raw power and force of will, and its opposition, people who would restore markets, pricing, and economic reality. They are mutually exclusive. It’s the sum total power of men vs mathematics and nature. Whoever would return truth and economic reality would crash all markets, break the economic dictatorship, and must be destroyed.
Thanks for your work.
The only thing surprising about Spain is that people are still surprised. What will it take?
Former Gen. Honore was on national news lambasting Trump’s response to the hurricane even back with Harvey. I’m not sure, considering Houston, Florida, and Puerto Rico, what he thought could be done, but that’s fair game, I guess.
…Except for Gen. Honore was the one running the Katrina relief, which was so mishandled it led to credible theories FEMA and the government were running an intentional, open genocide against the people of New Orleans, withholding aid, stopping supply trucks, re-settling people, confiscating guns, having police and EMTs raid houses and stores and even shoot people escaping NOLA, all overseen or at least in the jurisdiction of Gen. Honore. All of this is well-reported consensus fact. So the man who ran the worst relief effort in U.S. history, one so bad the population actually, credibly believed the U.S. government was trying to kill them, is invited on national TV to criticize Trump’s relief efforts? The gall is breathtaking. And viewers nod their heads and say, “Wow, yeah, F Trump! Here’s a general, he should know.” Yes, a general that should have been court-martialed if W. or anyone actually cared or had consequences for performance. That’s who General Russel L. Honoré is.
The actual recovery? Stinks. It’s really slow, tedious, expensive, and unpleasant. That’s what happens when everything in a 50 mile radius is put back to the 19th century. Let’s look at P.R. They had a 1-Star general running support after Maria passed, as would be procedure. As a naval exercise, that may have been delayed waiting for the storm to pass Norfolk. There are no roads or trucks, so available supplies quickly bottled up in San Juan. As you might expect, airlifting supplies inland is slow as you don’t know who needs what. They have mainland drivers but no beds for them, and still need parts and trucks. After a week, which involves finding out what needed and what was broken, they upped to a 3-star and additional supplies, as by the book. We have not had any particular emergency as the weather is good and the people are orderly. The power is out, but if anyone remembers, last month when PR went bankrupt, the power company said they might have blackouts due to corruption stealing their daily repair money for years, and the cash crunch might shut off a power plant or two. That’s not a strong territory. As a very poor place since the 1950’s, the houses are not Florida-code, the roads are weak, and the supplies and other depth of infrastructure mined in favor of well-reported corruption. It goes without saying the people don’t bother to prepare for themselves. So an eider feather could knock them over.
That said, the recovery is disappointing. There is no support at home because all the U.S. troops and trucks are overseas in illegal wars. The Navy seemed a bit lackadaisical, I mean, you can fly all day to F-stan, but you can’t clear a strip in the United States, you have no satellite photos and assessment of damage department in the Pentagon? No military cell-tower service ships, or are they busy in Syria? No one (including reporters) have satellite phones anymore? Really? I can’t say that’s represents a broke, third-world country but it’s getting there, which is why, for 20 years, we’ve needed that money at home, in Cleveland and Detroit. So if the Navy has been by the book, and Congress themselves don’t care, took them a week to suspend the Johnson Act, what are they after Trump for? Even the Mayor was fine with San Juan until the polito-boys arrived from Chicago, and the narrative, which was scattered and uncertain, galvanized into this week’s anti-Trump narrative(tm), along with the Cat and the Hat being racist ™ written by a librarian in a Cat and the Hat costume with a former black first lady promoting Dr. Seuss with a live-action performer and a brass band. No you can’t make this up. Also no one cares or reports that more people were killed in Chicago this weekend. So now the narrative is written, they can finally report on it with confidence: “P.R. was fine before Trump got there.” Immediate by the book support run by the Military is now impeachably inadequate. If he visits he’s an obstacle, and if he doesn’t, he’s racist and doesn’t care. Same as it ever was, and I think this is the tornado-of-nonsense ™ Raul was talking about. But just having a weak, lackluster, uninspired response isn’t enough. It has to be bad, Really Bad, “bad hombre” bad. In the new world, if it isn’t Hitler-mated-with-PolPot bad we can’t be bothered to report on it, and I just find that ridiculous. Like shut-off-my-TV-and-cancel-my-NFL-subscription ridiculous.
They stink? It stank before he got there, governments always stink, and what they need is the Cajun Navy and the Baptist Charities, who usually do all this crap while politicians posture on Camera and FEMA obstructs. But they can’t help this time, at least not yet.
Agree. The modern Humpty Dumpty use of language, where words mean whatever I think they should mean is by definition, insanity. So not to open doors, I’m just using the classic wikipedia definition. Basically that Communism the people own the means of production (in effect, the community, not individuals) and in Socialism the government owns the means of production (in theory to hand it back to the people, which never happens). That’s why Fascism and Socialism are twins: in both systems the government own all, and once owning all, there is no economic or social counterweight to offset totalitarian state power. As I’ve pointed out, that used to be well known, as both Hitler and Mussolini were basically worker’s party organizers, only they believed in national revolution instead of worldwide worker’s revolution. In practice, history showed Hitler, Stalin, Lenin, Mussolini to be indistinguishable.
So is Germany Socialist? Well, like the U.S., all the Western nations are now Socialist ‘lite’ in varying degrees. You technically own property, but the government can pass laws to completely control it, outlaw it, tax it into oblivion, and single out companies and sectors for totalitarian control on a regular basis. Apple is exempt from the law on standard charging plugs. Why? Because we feel like it. Or taking the Bundy ranch to sell to China. Or Solara, or paying Tesla $7500+ per car. Or Lockheed for that matter. The difference in our Socialism is that it originates from the corporate side, which is why it is better named Corporatism, or as Mussolini said, Fascism. The companies tell the government what to do, who then tells the less-connected corporations what to do. Or better put, the insiders vs the outsiders, where the Insiders are a revolving door of corporations and government/military, and their handmaidens and well-paid intelligentsia “1%” who execute the violence and control on the ground, vs the outsiders, who may even be government, businessmen, military, but who do not have the levers of power and/or oppose the merging of corporations and the state.
So are they Socialist or not? Yes. But if you start from a true definition, understanding what’s going on is a lot easier. And also the solution: if we know well the risk of complete control of a State/Company merger — that it kills millions worldwide, as is happening now — and we know they were better contained when the State could not be paid to make economic winners and losers, then we know the solution would be to NOT have an all-powerful state transferring wealth and creating winners and losers. That implies cutting the size and scope of government and pushing it down to the local level as much as possible — one reason the Scandinavian example is so much less feral.
In America, that’s easy: the whole nation and its law was founded on this principle, and virtually everything that makes it Socialist/Fascist is specifically forbidden by the Constitution, which is our top law. So if we just followed the law and returned to our roots, we’d improve sharply AND stop marching around the world like idiots. Win-Win. But as you notice in our Humpty Dumpty world of Humpty Dumpty reporting, wanting a smaller government that has less foreign expansion, less domestic surveillance, less state control of the economy and a return to equality under the law — that is, the OPPOSITE of all things Fascist — is considered to be Nazi, while the expansion of all those things is reported as de facto good, just, and Antifa. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. How do you think they sold it in 1936? Your grandparents weren’t stupid. In the same lying way, with the same Oppositeland words.
“Everyone can have a pony.”
OMG, what can I say? LA Times, Sander’s Economic advisor, we’d expect no less. At least Sanders is honest: he’s a socialist. He wants the government to run everything, including the economy. That may be counter to the Law, the Constitution, and the national character, but it’s a legitimate position to have, and props to be honest about it, unlike say, Romney’s Bain Capital (who just bankrupted ToysRUs) and John McCain.
How can I be clear about this? Yes, the government can “print money” and props to the economist who points out the real economy has physical limits — a refreshing change. But the government printing money, then directing how many ponies to make IS SOVIET STYLE CENTRAL PLANNING AND IT DOESN’T WORK. You might have noticed, since you Professors pom-pommed soviet communism for 70 years as it murdered millions, devastated quality of life, and fell so far behind Capitalism (such that we have any) it was like comparing the 19th and 20th centuries. After the removal of Soviet central planning (and neoliberal colonial extraction), Russia has rocketed forward such that they’ve leapfrogged the US in military technology, and is arguably better off than several EU and NATO countries. Everywhere else Kelton’s miracle central planning has been tried, it also destroys the economy and kills citizens, most recently in Venezuela. Winning!
Here’s the newsflash: no one “print money” and gets rich. Never ever. YOU, Ms. Economist, sit in your ivory tower and circle-jerk it in a cocaine-and-champers party and make ME, the working guy, turn the bolts on making new tractors in flyoverland and go home to a collapsing house with no food. JUST LIKE THE SOVIET UNION. I don’t even have to warn and hypothesize since we’re already there. Just no one notices since they only leave the Blessed Coasts on a sightseeing safari of “The savage and deplorable natives.”
So go ahead, LA Times, tell all us people who are far away from the money spigot and actually work for a living how we’re all going to just keep working for nothing forever ’cause you tell us to. How’s that working out for ya? How’s that working for your party? Your college? Your profession’s credibility? Your newspaper? And lastly, how’s that working out for your political and/or real power to have Billy Bob in Wisconsin vote your way and obey you?
Yeah, I thought so. Personally, I’m happy with it: the more Kelton’s of the world talk smack, the more all 330M Americans realize how dumb, how destructive, and how murderous actual socialism is. Then maybe we can stop being stupid, stop pillaging each group against the other other with government guns, and start building again with something we call “open cooperation” and “voluntary exchange” where you have to “be honest” and “keep your word” by force of contract law. Yes, that might even be Capitalism, and you’ll notice that Kelton’s and Bernie’s Socialism are therefore the opposite of cooperation, freedom, and voluntary, personal exchange. Funny ol’ thing.
It is tautological that it’s beneficial to avoid the misallocation or wasteful and pointless application of wealth which the government is famous for; or their required enforcement of wasteful oligopolies like medicine – approaching record-breaking zero care for infinite cost! Up 50% in Florida this year!
But the government is not going to cut anything. Not outsized and hilariously backward military graft, not the $23T+ in corporate welfare which lets MNCs and billionaires avoid taxes, and not the 60% of social welfare spending that’s wasted in administration. They can’t. Why? Because without infinite growth, infinitely accelerating, a debt-based system mathematically collapses. The end.
So let’s cut to the chase. Since you’re not going to stop, and since 1979 you were never going to repay the debt anyway — something Adam Smith remarked on in 1775 — then the idea of tax cuts takes on a new flavor, doesn’t it? Lawmakers and Presidents can’t say it, but once you’re going to default, it’s now just a choice between crippling your population with austerity on behalf of the creditors (ie banks) or not crippling your citizens and telling the creditors to back off. …In preparation for the day you default anyway.
I know there have been discussions on austerity here, but they often pretend there are no limits and no consequences to giving everything to everybody. That’s impossible, both physically and strategically. However, you can still choose between a bad outcome of slavery and austerity, or freedom, autonomy, and hardship. So again, since Congress knows this – or at least many on the finance committee do – AND they know this was decided and set in stone long before they arrived, they have to play the hand before them. Recognizing this, and that they’re all lying – shocking I know – will make all the kabuki theatre make a lot more sense to us outsiders. So, print money to pay for the tax cuts until you can’t, then go back to a gold-oil standard when you have to. You know this is close because they’re finally serious about industrializing to offset the imminent halt of foreign imports. This will restore income equality as the insider money-hose stops, bonds collapse, paper wealth disappears, and access to government has little benefit.
Again, they’re not going to pay. They were never going to pay. It’s impossible to pay. They will default, like governments always do, like Adam Smith said. Everyone knows it, that’s why they don’t care. That makes all the decisions different.
“..Companies have little incentive to cooperate for the greater good. Instead, they prioritize aggressive growth and reckless behavior.”
He meant the Wall St. Banks, right? You know, the ones who met in an Italian restaurant to collude to chop up Lehman? (True story. One that didn’t turn out so well for us. But mega bonus profits and open-ended protection for them!) Sorry, I find it hard to tell them apart from other “uncooperative aggressive” criminals.
Loss of power for 6-12 months “means it could be impossible to trace revenue and enforce tax rules.”
Really? That’s the priority now? Sounds like they should do what Florida did: hand out code violations 12 hours after Irma.
“boosting revenue by collecting money that slips through the cracks.”
And now we know their real priority: as in Greece, the citizens of P.R. can die in huts and tarp shacks, while we collect the remaining money for billionaire bondholders in Monaco. Also ban cash? Worldwide Digital currency? What’s your backup plan? Oh right, death and destruction: they have none.
“[Trump] ran many of [his companies] using excess debt, deception, and distraction,” Sounds like the U.S. exactly: unproductive gambling, debt-levered Real Estate bubbles, fake PR, multiple bankruptcies, great choice!
“It’s focused on lowering the tax rate for multinational corporations from 35% to 15%, further aiding the profitability of companies that already routinely squirrel away profits and hide losses in the crevices of tax havens” Um, Prins, you should know the tax rate is exactly the reason for their failure to return profits, and therefore pay ANY taxes. I’m not thrilled with it, but you can’t be mad at 15% of something instead of 35% of nothing, which will also draw back world investment and industry that the U.S. desperately needs. And P.S., if TrumpCo was ever in violation of taxes, by golly you think that might have made the election news? Pretty sure! I mean, the IRS is leaking and auditing and dumping all their other opponents for decades, every other department leaked, even if it was false! That means his tax behavior was entirely legal…under the leviathan, byzantine tax code that was written that way precisely to make sure billionaires pay no taxes. It’s no use arguing this when no one, from GE to PepCo to Apple to Buffett pays real taxes. Prins, are you really such a babe in the woods? Getting Billionaires off while saddling the middle class is why the income tax code exists, and has for 100 years. Really?
Why Far Right Won In Germany (G.) “A Nazi party being the third biggest party in Germany! I am still devastated.”
Guardian, you’re fired. The AfD is “Nazi” in what way? AfD wants stronger government, German control of Europe/EU, social engineering, fascist corporate mergers, or promotion of the occult? No? AfD was founded AGAINST the German-run EU, and FOR national borders, direct Swiss-style democracy, sovereignty, opposing bailouts, ie corporate fascism? Then how are they similar? Did any pass history and notice that the National Socialist German Workers’ Party is… I don’t know…Socialist? i.e. Left? The Nazis believed in a total state and corporate power merger, subverting Parliament, and social engineering, which is not…you know…a Conservative value, i.e. “Right”? Nevermind. Winston’s been busy at Minitrue: nobody else notices either. In the modern parlance “Left” and “Right”, and “Center”, all want increasing state power, concentration, state-protected economic monopoly, war, and intervention. And there is NO party, direction, wing, or representative of smaller governments, national sovereignty, actual markets, greater liberty, and personal responsibility, because considering how well larger, more monopolized governments have been working at stopping war and helping the people, that would just be crazy. Nazi, in fact. As reported above by a major international newspaper. …You can’t make this up, but the Guardian can. You’re fired. Fired. Fired. Fired. No wonder they have no power, influence, or credibility anymore.
“EU Presidency Calls For Massive Internet Filtering (EDRi) “ They’re rising up to EU Minitrue standards, and the UK Guardian is ahead of the curve.
There’s so many things here. They set up the U.N. charter in order to face-slap the Soviets and harangue them day after day with “Democratic votes” in Czech, Serbia or wherever. The ability to make trouble by dividing “freedom fighters” in any nation they feel like is just an added bonus. So Catalonia can vote for independence, eh? Then so can South Carolina? The Oglala Nation? How about Jefferson, CA? Or Jim down on Maple Street who’s sick of taxes? Yeah, no. Like other psychopaths, they simply define legality by “what’s outrageous” at the time. If they like it, it’s legal and supported, if they don’t like it right then, it’s illegal and beaten with batons. And the U.N. isn’t even a glove on this, because they mean nothing and never had any cohesion or self-direction in their life — they are just the PR department for the raw power of whoever’s running it (the West) and whoever
bribespays the most.
So there is and has never been any legal structure, any logical structure, or any procedural structure. Sovereignty is about raw power, enforced with raw violence. Greece may know that, but I expect Merkel said something like, “You think a million refugees are bad? Play ball or we’ll green-light Turkey to annex you into Erdogan’s New Ottoman Empire”, a war that would last 100 years and Greece could not possibly win.
But let’s go the other way. Spain is being annexed and extracted for Germany’s pleasure the same as Italy and Greece. This has been going on since 2008. Coincidentally, in 2008 the Catalonian nationalism got a sudden shot in the arm. Here we are, 10 years of agitating and social engineering later and they’re developing a civil war. Well yes, that’s what happens when the money runs out. Yet Rajoy seems impossibly hard-handed against the province that pays the bills, and for no real good reason. Why?
Well, what happens when Spain and Catalonia get in a fight? The first casualty will be the Spanish and Catalonian bonds, which will default in some way. This could even destroy the Euro, and the EU after it. So you see, if you’re Spain and you’re in a debt you can’t pay, to an unelected, unaccountable entity that doesn’t mind 50% unemployment for a decade and would rather treat you like Greece and make you homeless on the continent you were born, then perhaps a faultless tussle amongst Iberian cousins could make the whole problem go away? You know, sort of on accident?
…Don’t worry, because Italy, with a different character, has her own plans to also destroy the EU, and we saw only some of that when they ignored the bailout rules and forced Draghi to heel, but the 5-Star and the Lira restart are right behind.
Nevertheless, some kitchen-table prophets have foreseen that someone in the Spanish-speaking world would default, it would cripple the Euro, and 48 hours later the Ice-9 seizure would be in NY. But yes, sovereignty is extra-judicial and extra-legal: they are expressions of human culture and belonging that CREATE the law, and make it exist and relevant. What sort of law do you have, in Libya, in Ukraine, where everyone just ignores the “official” government? That’s all the law ever was. Participation.
“The dawning of a realisation that Google and Facebook in particular may have played some role in these political earthquakes.”
Yes, but not the way they think.(The Guardian, as usual) The illustration they are losing power is that they DID do everything — I mean everything — to bend the election. Print 90-99% negative stories, check. Fake stories one after another, easily debunked, openly discredited, check. Highlight 10:1 stories on FB/MSM promoting their candidates, ignoring all unwanted contenders, check. Rigging the primaries both D. (sinking Sanders) and R. (according to leaks, Hillary demanded media insure Trump be her opponent), then never report on this open fact, check. Oh and so, so, very le plus maximum mucho more. And so $50k, disputed and still not attributed is supposed to turn an election spending in the billions? Are you for real joking me right now? A single Saudi donation — totally illegal btw — sinks that paltry effort. We would have to be the weakest country with the weakest Democracy on earth to even suggest, meaning you should sell our stocks and bonds immediately on non-confidence.
And yet, AND YET with all this help — and unless you’re in the U.S., amazingly you cannot understand how overwhelming bent this election was by the status quo — they still lost. If the 140% more ppl voting than exist in some CA districts or the Detroit recount is any indication, worse than reported. They got savaged. Then again with spot elections, running the same PR, savaged. 10:1 ad buys, lost. Party donations, savaged. Again and again, everywhere their Facebook/Google/Madison Ave progressive PR appears, they lose again. The American people just hate them SOOO much. So. Much.
…Which is fine, things happen, but they did not adjust, they doubled down. WTF? They already lost the parade and are walking down the street alone: double back and attract people again, lie to them, buy them off, recalculate, whatever, that’s your job. But they literally won’t, and don’t. Like I’ve said before, what’s your product when you’ve driven 40% of the country OFF YouTube and Facebook and into Duck and Steemit? How do you influence them then?
And not like J&J hasn’t caught on. Cutting social media ads 99% has NO ill effects on revenue. You can’t let the advertisers catch on to this, are you insane? Yet that’s exactly what they’re still doing. So now you have no influence, no ad revenue AND no business model. Tell me how the Duke boys are going to get out of this one, Waylon.
So yes, it’s a political earthquake of Facebook and The UK Guardian alright, only it’s one that shows they are now irrelevant and can’t influence anything. If they can’t influence anything, no one reads or believes them anymore, then what are their ads and eyeballs worth? If you said ‘nothing’ you may have passed 4th grade math. I don’t know where we’re going, but in the Renaissance they didn’t know either. It just happened, as human culture does from time to time. I’m only shocked they just keep going…
“The Greek economy will remain under
close supervisionforiegn occupation for years”
How does a country, state, territory survive without power for half a year?
We may all soon find out.
But seriously, electric power is not life. It’s a tool that does certain things. We’ll find other ways, do other things, have other priorities, like each other, community, support, helping. Really it could vanish from the earth and we might be the better for it. No cyberattacks, no digital bank fraud, no universal surveillance state? Return to family, green things, plants and animals, meaning, slower life? So it has benefits AND costs, like nuclear power, like TNT, like flint knives. Let’s not go soft just on the benefits, but see the whole package.
I know they have to write something to illustrate Bitcoin, but there are more oversights in the HowMuch article than even they extensively admit.
One, as they say, the exchanges mass-own wallets. That is, the people-owners of the exchange-based-wallet don’t own Bitcoin, they are not recorded transactions on the ledger. In that way, they don’t exist, and they don’t own Bitcoin but a claim on the exchange corporation. They may be recorded if you leave the exchange, but not within it. In addition, transactions within exchange, say between two Coinbase users, are not recorded, not real, and perhaps not even purchased, as the exchanges make their money by fractionally-reserving the asset. Maybe they own 70% of the coins they pretend to. This was one of the problems in China, or back with Mt. Gox. They SAID they bought coins, but didn’t, which is fine as long as liquidity is good. This also leads to problems if the coins split, as they only have access to 70% of the BitcoinCash they claim to own, and must buy the rest. How? Before we get moralistic on them, this is how all actual stock and commodity exchanges work, with futures bidding on delivery that isn’t there, and stock exchange failure-to-deliver — that is, we charged you, but didn’t, you know ACTUALLY find and buy the stock share, much less sign it to your name — is over $1.3 Billion a day. Oh, and we’re also voting on corporate business with 2x, 10x as many shares voting as were ever issued. Not owning and delivering the product is industry-standard now, and Bitcoin exchanges only share that same drawback.
Next there’s a huge statistical quirk in the data, because 1 Million out of a mere 20 Million coins owned by the original Sataoshi have never been touched — and with a Bitcoin ledger, you can and MUST know with absolute truth. That stat alone would blow the concentration ratio out of the water.
Next problem is, thousands of people were involved back in the beginning when Bitcoin was a worthless novelty under 10c. Did they keep their wallets? Back them up? Still have access to them? Unlikely. More likely, a few million more of the original 20M are on crashed hard drives, vanished, never to be recovered. With Bitcoin at $1 instead of $5,000, it’s far more likely these are owners of 10, 100, 1,000 coins, not .002 coins as more likely today. And yet those coins are lost at sea and for all purposes don’t exist. You need to run stats on the active wallets, but who are they? How active? Pension Fund owners of IBM don’t necessarily touch their shares for decades, yet are legally real and active.
Next, suppose you’re a type to get into early Bitcoin — and it’s still so early only the Edmund Hillarys have arrived. Why are you in this weird new frontier? For privacy on the Silk Road, dodging Chinese currency controls, hiding that extra fund money outside of Panama, off-book deal sweetener, that sort of thing. So, Mr. Paranoia, you use one wallet, or two? Or Ten? All with different numbers on different hard drives, in case someone police official demands the numbers? Yeah, as many as possible in as complex a route as possible. And not on an exchange. So these large owners look small.
Last, we have the basic problem: Jamie Dimon’s bitcoin traders, the ones who were bragging on their winnings, who just had a Crypto conference sponsored by Morgan — you know, the ones he said he doesn’t have — might be only in the thousands worldwide, but have access to ten million USD each. They have to, or they can’t manipulate the price like Dimon did this week. The common man will only risk thousands each. So the wealth concentration only mirrors the wealth concentration of the real world. Pull Satoshi and inactive wallets out and you’ll probably find it’s MORE equitable than other wealth holders, but that’s not saying much, and with access to unlimited, unbacked printing from the Fed, Dimon Boyz will catch up fast.
Moving on to wallets, NO, YOU DON’T NEED AN EXCHANGE. You shouldn’t use one. That’s the WHOLE POINT, and if you’re in Bitcoin on an exchange you may be doing it wrong. That’s why it’s called “peer to peer”, “trustless” currency. If you add an exchange anywhere, the exchange can be corrupted, counterfeited, bombed, shut down, charge fees, use their influence to rig markets: all the same problems Bitcoin was created to get away from. You hold your OWN wallet, on your own PC, phone, or paper printout, and transfer it the same way, as the Chinese found out this week. That also says that if you want to BUY Bitcoin, Mr. HowMuch, you DO NOT buy it from an exchange, but person to person, where it actually exists and is actually transferred on the ledger. I know that isn’t how it mostly occurs right now, but that’s the whole point of its existence. If you traffic through an exchange and not peer-to-peer, you might as well just stay where you are, with Wells Fargo creating millions of phony accounts, trading millions or billions of cartel drug money (U.N. official report), while buying commercial jets for Mexican Drug cartels to run illegal guns (public record), and asking for $23 Trillion in taxpayer bailouts (minimum, official), all funded by the Fed printing unbacked dollars.
…And they say Bitcoin is in the underworld! Wells and Morgan probably move more drug money in a month than Bitcoin has in its whole existence. Bitcoin needs to be purchased, held, and sold person-to-person or it’s pointless, and therefore worthless. The whole point to Bitcoin is that there are and can be only 20M coins, and no more ever. It can only deflate, never inflate, and never be waved into existence, showing the present system is so broken and corrupt that Bitcoin is bizarrely MORE real and trustworthy than actual, national currencies! I know it’s new and different, but HowMuch and many/most other commentators need to just do a base wiki and get up to speed before reporting wrongly on accident out of sheer unfamiliarity.
100M not in workforce and 100M don’t have even $500. How’s that economy doing? Green Shoots! Fully recovered!
In a way, be careful about being “in” and “out” of assets: you’re always “in” assets, just trading between types. Stocks to cash, cash to bonds, bonds to real estate, real estate to gold, gold to yen, yen to cryptos, cryptos to pork-n-beans. They are all “assets”. As many (Mish, Hussman) point out, there is no “cash on the sidelines” (well, not exactly), because cash and stocks are just traded back and forth between the same trading population. There’s never been less cash than today, as it’s all been borrowed into existence at interest, largely by MNCs.
So what are we talking about here? Well, it would seem the “bubble” in loosely, “debt”, means the price of things you buy on margin have risen, along with the assets debt-bubble-money-margin-traders like to buy: stocks, bonds, real estate, but also cars, art, metro trophy properties, submarines, yachts, private islands, buying all of Greece by enslaving the Greeks to death — you know, that kind of thing. So what on planet earth HASN’T been bid up? The real world. Things that are real, useful, hard to store and financialize. You know, like food, water, raw materials. But…?
But every stock bull ever has raised these same paper assets, and every bear market has savaged paper and sparked a commodity boom that’s savage but lasts 1/3 as long? That is, a whole bunch of promises go hollow and default, raising the relative price of the real things you would buy with those (pension, bond, stock earnings, crypto, speculative) promises? Yeah, something like that. Lies can only persist so long, and although this may be the greatest expansion of lies, murder, and self-delusion in human history, anyone can see that the U.S. is not paying back $20T in like kind, nor Europe, nor China, nor the suspected $4 quadrillion in derivative bets. Although copper or wheat may not “rise” in a sense, sitting on the ground it can certainly stay stuck at $4/bu. and $3/lb while Van Gogh falls 99% and UST’s fall 99 & 44/100%. Ironically, that makes them stronger, but it won’t be a picnic.
It’s just a rotation of assets. Same as evermore.
“Once private markets perfect cryptocurrency technology, governments will commandeer it.”
Truer words have never been spoken. This is why they’re letting it carry on and move forward even though it’s a threat to an establishment that openly murders all threats. Because evil cannot create, one day they hope to apply this technology to more murder and control. But they’re going to make both of these happen, and the supposed opposition to them is all on board with helping because they threw a few dollar signs at them. So I doubt it will help, but beware.
Speaking of, N. Korea’s satellite has been up there, what, years? And we “still don’t know” if it’s an EMP? $600B budget, minimum, and U.S. boffins never figured out how to x-ray it, sabotage, disable it, etc? Russia has always been hardened against EMP, but now even have a EMP resistant cell phone…the Cook and McCain were cooked, broadsided while dead in the water motionless…we can take basic steps to harden our grid for $60B, profit a lot of pals doing it, told Congress in 2004, Pentagon isn’t interested, and nothing’s been done even now with N. Korean “war” imminent? Anyone else’s BS detector going off here?
However, it’s easy to know they’re lying — everything that’s reported is a lie. What’s difficult is to know what the truth is.
Yes, these are the kinds of threats they’re reduced to? It just shows how weak and contemptible they are. Go ahead, munchkin! Cut off China trade imports to the U.S. and tell me how it goes for you. Everything only accelerates the parallel competing currency system and shrinks the U.S. The real trouble is not the Problem they created, but the Solution they’ll surely attempt on us.
Speaking of clueless contemptibles:
“You can’t have a business where people can invent a currency out of thin air and think that people who are buying it are really smart.”
Gosh, yes, Jamie, you’re so right! Good thing we don’t have a system like that, and if we did, certainly you wouldn’t be involved in it. Right.
And no, Capitalism can’t save the planet or us, because “Capitalism” only means you have the right to make, own, and sell stuff. That’s value-neutral, it’s not meant to and is in no way involved in the parts that DO “save the planet”: society, morality, our beliefs. Capitalism is fine with slavery, or fine without it; it’s ourselves that set limits on what we feel is intelligent and legal and right. So just as we should not use a zebra as a hammer — two things in entirely unrelated spheres — we should not ask Capitalism to adjudicate on right and wrong, which is not the job of the magic “Market,” or the magic “Government” but our job, the people and citizens, with our hard work and attention, to control each of these things within their own scope. Understanding this, we then authorize the “market” or the “government” the limited, in-scope powers to enact the will we collectively have within us, in a very messy, human way.
For instance, the open and total harvesting of all land and people in Greece. Is it Slavery to steal, sell off their entire country, one lot at a time, until nothing is owned by the home population? Okay to pollute Chinese rivers instead of our own and kill millions overseas by off-shoring all our messy, inconvenient production? Is that murder, exploitation, slavery of a sort? Okay to overlook that there are perhaps more actual, literal slaves on earth this minute than during the entire 300 year western slave era? …But those are all okay, just the way the world works. They call the sale and control of Greece, more encompassing than the 3rd Reich, just “Capitalism”. No doubt the traders call human trafficking “Capitalism”. But it’s not for us to just hide our greed and cowardice behind inevitable drawbacks of “Capitalism” and go on our day. Or is it? That’s what we opine about the colonial era, the slave ships, and how could the people just sit there in 1815 in India, in South Carolina? How did they tolerate and allow such evil? As we more than sit here, but support, applaud, and profit by, the mirror image of all their primitive, violent moves. Why? Because “It’s not evil when we do it.” That’s human nature.
When are we going to finally wake up about modern science? This attachment to the Big Bang is another illustration of their cultism. Maybe we’ll notice when they’re up on a mountain with a buffalo rattle shouting “oonga boonga.” Listen, the theory was a nice stab at the problem back in the 70s, but it hasn’t worked out. …For 50 years, it hasn’t worked out. I mean, your theory has no explanation for 82% of the universe, therefore invented an unprovable plug number, dark matter? They invented the number and the matter as it can’t be measured. “Dark Matter” is really the name for how your theory is 82% wrong and you just noticed. With a usual need for accuracy to the 1x10th power, gravity equations may be off by as much as 10^30? I won’t write that, as to non-science heads, that’s a 10 with 30 zeros. And now you have suns that are older than the universe and you seriously report it with a straight face? Okay, here’s a different headline: “Scientists Finally Abandon Long-Debunked Big Bang Theory, Look for Another.” Something that isn’t off by 10x30th.
So, that said, we’re supposed to eat with the little kid’s spoon when they tell us about health, climate, archeology? Again, we’re like 5-10 years past that practical joke where someone published 300 word-jumbled science studies in peer journals, and no one noticed. Every day they continue to sell something toxic they said was safe, even after the real science comes out and finally proves it. Statins and Roundup being recent ones, but you could build an actual Mayan pyramid on the examples.
Please, science does what it does, but unsurprisingly it’s as corrupt as the rest of society right now. Can we at least not breathlessly report “Science says” when they completely pig-ear another prediction in hurricane Irma only 24 or 48 hours ahead of time? They’re hacks. Many, and maybe the majority now are exclusively hacks who will publish false results for corporate money. If they want respect, they need to tighten their game and go back to science, you know, with public data and provable predictions. SMH. Thanks science, you just needlessly evacuated 6.5 million people, most of whom were on the Atlantic side. How many died and how much repair material was wasted in the evacuation? Don’t expect an apology from them or the media that pushes their discredited trollop, they’ll continue tomorrow as if all their predictions came true and we’re not off by 10^30, several billion years, and 100,000 medical deaths.
Not to fear: we were never going to pay our debts back. Ever. Not since 1979. So we’re the same as before.
Okay, but that does not mean we can go on rebuilding houses, badly, that add nothing and never should have been built in the first place. We have the resources to fix all this. We have men, skills, ore, trees, pipes, power, and believe it or not, still a lot of oil. The problem is, like Kunstler or Diogenes says, we’re just completely mis-applying them.
I think Tainter, while correct, is also mistaken: yes the infrastructure outruns the resources, but why? Societies have business cycles they must safely contract in, and larger, 70-200 year cycles as well. We sometimes even catch them reforming themselves for round 2 or 3, or not. So why do some large societies reform themselves and heal, which is clearly possible, and some ossify and collapse? That’s the real question, and I think he wrote the book so that we might ask. The U.S. – and most places on earth, in fact — can still reform and recover. Congo has everything and is poor. Japan has nothing and is rich. Why? The largest long-term study discovered that property rights, equal justice, stability/visibility, and a few other things were the real signals of wealth; things that have been forcefully and systematically undermined in the U.S. since the 40’s — a long discussion, but reported by several converted spies and our otherwise inexplicable actions over the years. So we can go back to what worked, or we can go off the rails, your choice. But one thing’s for sure, thanks to the 50-year party I and everyone outside the 20 ordained cities fought against and didn’t enjoy, there are no promises now but “blood, toil, tears, and sweat.” So are we going to build more party houses, or are we going to get to work now?
Rumor has it China is shutting the unregulated exchanges that might compete with the blessed ones. Very likely Russia is doing the same: stopping outright scams while cleaning up (and slowing down) the market to insure its future. How can we tell? Because the Chinese Yuan-oil-gold setup is going to have a blockchain side, and looks like so will the Sino-Russian inter-bank transfers. So this comes from reporters not knowing what the heck a “Crypto” is, so they muddle 1,000 different tools that use the idea into one. They are very likely SUPPORTING blockchain, not outlawing it.
“What we need to understand is how capitalism has managed to reproduce itself since the Great Depression”
Facepalm. First, FDR’s New Deal in the Depression was 125% against capitalism. Not that it was free even in 1930, but every motion made for 10 years was regulation, control, central planning, micromanaging…and preventing markets from price discovery and clearing because as a Wall St guy, his buddies might get slightly less rich and be a little embarrassed. Just like today. And by 1937 his own cabinet said “We tried everything and it didn’t work.” So bad starting point. PS, in 1910, people were probably even MORE living in PA riverbeds, out on LA bayous than now, and in worse houses. Difference was, like Walden cabin, they didn’t cost as much and they didn’t cry to mommy. Second, he then describes in great detail everything America has done that is also not Capitalist. “Regulated capitalism” is already not capitalism, however necessary. Is this a joke? Is this like how “left” and “right” have no meaning except “I don’t like you”, how nobody knows what a “National Socialist Worker’s Party” Nazi, is anymore, i.e. a “Socialist”? (how can I even need to say that?) Did history, language, disappear somehow?
“Regulated Capitalism” is headed to the OPPOSITE of Capitalism, Socialism. Every one of these projects was the government overrunning private property, capturing central control, redistributing citizen’s money to pet projects, probably to enrich insiders, with the exact ill effects Mises would describe. It should be retitled, “How the LACK of Capitalism drowned America”, published by the Mises institute with a forward by Hayek. Laws and orders? Check. Army Corps? Check. Stealing property to build levees and sink whole towns and counties under headwaters? Check. Very expensive? Check. Created increased moral hazard and totally failed? Check. Doubled down obvious physical failure by lying, financial rigging, and taxpayer bailouts? Check. 100 years later, the cost and bureaucracy are 1,000x larger, no one can get rid of it, and citizens can no longer imagine a market or government or solution that isn’t rigged? Check. Everyone was warned, knew this would happen, complained bitterly, yet watched each “fix” make it ever worse? Check.
What can I say? It ain’t “Capitalism.” Words have meanings, use them. If you can’t use the words accurately, you can’t think accurately, and have no chance of fixing anything accurately. “Capitalism” means I can make and own things and trade them with my neighbor without a 3rd party getting involved. That’s pretty much it. Yet the definition of the ability to own things without being robbed is now the quick definition of “evil failure.” Yes! I’m sure the guys at the top would like us to feel that resisting being robbed is evil! It makes their work far easier. Now they’ve spent 100 years advantaging one property owner (danger zones) at the expense of another property owner (everyone else) then lo! are amazed that they have more of what they subsidized and less of what they punished. And call it a “Failure of Capitalism”!
I got nothin’.
Looks like Trump will get his infrastructure spending, eh?
In perspective, we had 9 dead for an island of 90,000. While unfortunate, one might call that a win. The population of the Caribbean as a whole is 40M. At the moment, the death toll is 18. Would that many people have died in robberies and car and boating accidents by now? While very serious, the hyperbole and a half isn’t a benefit to anyone but the media.
Miami is in very serious trouble, but the houses are well-built. The south is very accustomed to hurricanes — very — and most people have been evacuated. So if half the gas stations are empty but only half the people are still there and not driving to work, isn’t that about right? I think they need that gas up-coast, the tanks may flood, and the shop will be closed for few days real soon. Another blogger points out that they cleared out all the expensive bottled water when every house in America has a +30 gallon water tank and a bathtub.
I only wish we could get real, common sense reporting that accurately communicates the actual risk, actual, non-sales solutions to it, and therefor isn’t turned up to eleven when the risk is 5, thereby having no megaphone left should danger someday actually appear. #Trump #stoplying.
This unceasing, screaming, 50-year lie is exactly what V. is talking about with NoKo, foreign wars, etc. and U.S. oblivion to it. #stoplying.
They’re talking $150B in Texas for crop loss alone. Since they’re saying $150-$200B for houses, this will give some idea of how much value is (still) in farming, in one crop of one year. But that’s $300B before we do a final count — rumor has it they haven’t added roads and infrastructure — and lost productivity. Again, calculate the people who will walk away, then look from Miami to Charleston, and multiply accordingly.
Odd they should be upset about this, since McConnell and the other McConmen said they absolutely, positively guarantee they’d raise the debt ceiling. So it’s raised, which is what they said, and now they don’t want it raised? Or not if Democrats are involved? Or not if Trump is involved? Or was it pretty much a Congressional ambush on Trump like the Obamacare vote and DJT just avoided it?
Who knows, who cares. These buffons and make-believe toy generals writing in and erasing more troops on the map, while having no troops on the field, have no effect on the overall reality. A reality dictated by oil supply, geopolitics, and the new lack of cooperation and support from anyone on earth with the United States. However, it does take a while for these septic molds to blossom in the autumn sun.
Nevertheless there is reality. There is no magic money tree. The resources available to a nation are strictly real and finite in roads, railroads, manpower, grids, etc, and printing six more digits on a computer somewhere doesn’t change that. A country is not specifically limited by a certain style of taxation, but excessive taxation or central control has historically savaged economic innovation and output. Always.
Money is a representation, a map of the economy, the underlying reality. The map is not the territory. And it can be altered, corrupted, misrepresented, and it amazingly, overwhelmingly, provably has.
The nation’s 4th largest city was destroyed, the largest refinery is down, no one has insurance, and the banking collateral for 150,000 homes is now worthless.
“Party on, Wayne! Can you believe those shoes?”
I’ve run out of words.
“The costs of imported goods would undoubtedly rise sharply…spillover effects on underlying inflation would hit middle-class US workers…especially hard.”
Yes, they would. But if you burn down your factories, there are no longer any good options. They don’t appear again by sprinkling magic pixie dust, but with hard work and sacrifice. PS, that’s why you shouldn’t spend 30 years fighting the will of the people to burn them down in the first place. This author seems to think, like other coddled urbanites, that you shouldn’t do anything if it’s hard or it hurts. Perhaps we should burn down the remaining 10% of our factories by continuing the same policies to avoid the consequences of our actions a few years longer, n’est-ce pas?
“Lacking in saving and wanting to consume and grow, the US must import surplus saving from abroad to close the gap, forcing it to run massive current-account and trade deficits with countries like China to attract the foreign capital.”
So many things here. So we’re the poor, helpless victims of free goods from China? Wow, that does sound awful. Wait, how did we get these massive account deficits with 0% interest rates? If we have to attract capital shouldn’t rates already be 15%? Are you thinking clearly, Mr. Roach? What he’s really talking about is a perverse effect of having the world’s reserve currency, and it’s undermined every empire that’s had it: Netherlands, Spain, France, England, you name it. But this is just nonsense. You COULD just re-build out of pure cash-flow, and a country like the U.S. has nearly every resource to do so, plus the skilled workers that are, while 5x more expensive than China, also 5x more productive. But it’s not necessary. If you want to move faster, Hamilton (and others by the way) have installed what they call “The American Plan” whereby the U.S. floats internal bonds to fund its own development, where productivity would retire the bonds, instead of borrowing money from alien banks at unnecessary interest. Bad things have traditionally happened to administrations that do so — war of 1812, Lincoln assassination, recent attacks on Russia — but aside from coincidental bad luck, it’s possible, and unlike most things in economics, 100% proven. So no, we do not need ANY foreign savings to do ANY thing, Mr. Roach. In fact, we experienced astonishing prosperity under the American System up to 1912, and ever increasing poverty after we abandoned it. Compounding interest has a runaway curve like that.
So look, if the U.S. isn’t going to return to the Stone Age, where we have no steel and use sticks and stones to ward off our enemies, then yes, we’re going to have to install protectionism to re-start our industry and return it to functional trade-balance levels. That’s going to hurt like a hot poker and nobody’s going to like it, not us and not our allies. But once you’ve thrown your rock-star house party and the Boomers burned the furniture down to the walls and the roof caved in, there’s nothing but expensive bills and cleanup duty for everyone. Sorry Canada, Mexico, but you were in this party too. Time for us all to sober up and get responsible again, and show up for work at 9, or even 4am. You can do it or starve. Those are our options. Ask any guy from Harrisburg to Sacramento.