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Re: [OT] Yemen (wasRe: King Donald)

On 2/4/2017 7:16 PM, Wolf K. wrote:
On 2017-02-04 18:44, Sailfish wrote:
Since I postulated on your economic philosophy, I will be as forthcoming
with mine. It's a quirky sprinkling of Aristotle and Yates*, neither of
which were economists:

In a monetised economy, there is only one objective law: My spending is
your income, and your spending is my income. Everything else is values,
beliefs, and (of course) superstition.

To put it another way: the technical problems of wealth creation are
relatively simple: make prices as accurate measures of cost as possible.
But then values kick in. For example, in an economy that can satisfy all
needs and a goodly portion of desires (like ours), the Law of Supply and
Demand is about values, not costs. Change people's values, and supply
and demand change. The clearest example of this is fashion: the newest
fashions are always expensive. A year or two or three later, they show
up in thrift shops at a small fraction of the price when they were new.
A more subtle example, perhaps, is the effect of overproduction, more
precisely the capacity to over-produce. Such as cars. From the 50s
onwards, cars were restyled regularly, they became fashion items. they
still are, but much less so than they were back then.

The central question of any economy isn't how to distribute wealth, in
fact, that's easy with money. It's what the economy is for. If you think
it's for making money, you will make different choices than if you think
its for creating a decent life for everyone. You will use different
metrics, too. If you think a good metric is growth, you do things to
improve those numbers. If you think a good metric is contentment and
maybe even happiness, you'll do things to improve those numbers. And so on.


Yet we live in a country where about 100,000 people travel halfway across the country, pay for hotels, restaurants, and transportation, to see a sporting event for which they pay up to $13,000 a TICKET. Not many countries can say that. Insane? Yes, to rational people who have to work for their money. And that for only a day or two of 'recreation'. And people say I am crazy because I spend $750 over 2 years for something I use every day, that does many things, including keeping my aging memory up to date, and providing me a way to call for help should I have a problem, not to mention connecting me to a whole world of information and entertainment! Who's crazy?

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