Blog Archive

Friday, April 21, 2017

The Economy is Failing Regular Americans:

The top .01% of Americans now have more wealth than the bottom 90%.  In addition, median household wealth has decreased by 40% since 2007.

Most of the wealth held by the bottom 90% is illusory -- unfunded pension funds, unfunded social security and medicare benefits, and houses they live in so can't afford to sell.

Millennials  make way less money than baby boomers did when they were the Millennials' age, and owe way more in debt.

Any attempt to redistribute wealth to the lower classes will only result in consumer price inflation, undoing whatever the government attempts to do to help.  Only by having all the money locked up in phantom assets has the massive money printing of the government not resulted in massive inflation, the moment you try to turn that printed money into actual goods and services it will evaporate like morning dew in the desert.

The only way to improve the plight of the poor is to lower costs.  That's the holy grail.  If the same amount of money currently chasing goods and services were redistributed more evenly, that would not result in inflation, so a citizen's dividend that results in less government spending than the previous model is fine.  But that citizen's dividend only helps if basic goods and services are affordable.

The way to lower costs is to decrease regulations which increase the price of doing business, decrease crime and corruption, decrease taxes which would immediately result in lowered prices in exact proportion, or invent a more efficient method to deliver the good or service than what we had before.

Computer chips and oil businesses have found an amazing variety of ways to continuously increase efficiency and thus lower costs for consumers.  Oil is half the price it used to be, even though we are steadily climbing up the difficulty curve of accessible oil finds.  That's just fantastic.  The PS4 was cheaper than the PS3 despite being a more powerful gaming console.

But prices need to keep dropping until no one experiences material hardship in this world.  That's the end goal, and we aren't nearly there yet.  Everyone should have food, clothing, shelter, health care, clean water, the internet, literacy, leisure time and entertainment to fill up said time, amenable temperature ranges, privacy, no loud noises, safety, a place away from pollution or bad smells, quick and easy transportation options that can whisk them wherever they want to go, phones so that people can communicate freely and keep track of each other's locations when they're trying to meet up, electricity, sewage, a bathtub, etc, etc.

There is simply no reason anyone should be undergoing unnecessary hardships, whether it's pain, being pestered, being degraded and soiled, or simply being deprived of the opportunities to live a happy life, by being able to go places, meet people, see things, make friends, widen their horizons, and so on.  I'm not asking for anything special, in America all of this should be plentiful and natural.

The problem isn't that I'm asking for too much from life.  The problem is the basic prices of these goods haven't dropped like they should -- in fact most of them are rising.  How can people afford a decent existence if it keeps requiring ever greater funds to reach?

Why is the price of housing, a 10,000 year old technology, going up instead of down?  Why hasn't the price of constructing a house dropped by half, like oil has?

The answer is overpopulation.  Cities are so crowded that even tiny apartments are ridiculously expensive, and the congestion of traffic makes it nigh impossible to get anywhere once you're out of said apartment.  Infrastructure maintenance and development can't keep up with the ever increasing demand.  And where is all this overpopulation coming from?  Open borders immigration.  The natural birth rate of the people who used to live here was below replacement.  Housing prices would have dropped in the natural flow of events, but that option was taken from us by a government which refuses to even enforce its own laws.

And since the people allowed to immigrate to America have high crime and terrorist attack rates, our safety is steadily diminishing instead of rising, and it costs ever higher sums to live in a 'safe' neighborhood where you can walk your dog without being raped and your kids can go to school without being bullied.

The cost of health care is unnecessarily burdened by immigrants and minorities who lead unhealthy lives, shoot each other on a daily basis, and then amble into the emergency room to be treated free of charge, or with subsidized health insurance that taxpayers have to fork over.  25% of the cost of medicare goes to diabetes treatments, an entirely preventable illness if these stupid poor minorities would just stop stuffing their mouths every day.

We can't lower costs when we have open borders immigration for the type of people who drive up the cost of housing, health care, education, crime avoidance/prevention/punishment, drugs disabling millions into death spirals of addiction, unemployment, homelessness and crime, transportation congestion, etc.  We could all live in nice temperate climates like California if the population were simply low enough.  But instead people are trying their best in muggy Texas, Florida, the deserts of Arizona, freezing Minnesota, Michigan, New York, etc.  Why?  Because the price of real estate in nice places with good views and good year round temperatures has already all been bought out.  Not even millionaires can afford to live anywhere nice anymore.

If we don't control costs, there's nothing we can do to help the poor.  Any attempt at redistribution of additional money that isn't already being redistributed will just lead to inflation, because the providers of these goods literally don't have any more supply, which is why everything is too expensive already.  If you try to jumpstart supply by providing a bunch of fake, printed dollars to people who will then increase demand, prices will naturally rise to put things back into equilibrium.  All of these goods are already allotted to someone somewhere, so increasing bidding on them doesn't help any.  If there were a way to produce more goods that people wanted while still doing it at below the price of production, businesses would have done so long ago.  Since they haven't, providing people fake money to buy more goods with is essentially just demanding businesses start providing goods and services at below the price of production, a quick way to drive all your businesses into bankruptcy, at which point no goods or services at all will be produced.

So yes, by all means, help out the poor via deregulation, lowered taxes, and less government spending on moral hazards like health care for people who brought about their own health problems via their own bad habits.  But unless you shut down immigration none of it matters.  First off, the overwhelming expense of accommodating all these new peasants is simply backbreaking, which leaves nothing left to spare the native poor.  Second off, all these new immigrants vote democrat, which means they will undo any cost saving measure you attempt to put in via good governance.  Everything is futile unless you can stay in power and keep regulations and taxes low so that businesses can actually go about doing their jobs.

Meanwhile, Yuuki Yuuna's latest oav was phenomenal.  Of course, I knew it would be good because I already read the book it was based off of, but it was even better than I dreamed.  Voice acting, music, animation, color, it just adds a whole new dimension that the written word cannot match.  Anime truly is the ultimate art form.

I'm about halfway through Baccano 18, another bad book, like all 1930's books other than the original flying pussyfoot storyline.  Flying Pussyfoot + 1700's is good, but all the rest of Baccano is awful.  The next time a new good light novel series appears, it's replacing Baccano on my hall of fame list.  I have to read something while conducting my video game grand music melee though.

In said melee, I'm nearly done listening to all the FF songs.  Once that's over I need to carefully compare the songs to see if they aren't really just remixes of each other.  They have different names and playing times, but often they all share the same melodies.  If I can just narrow that down to only the best version of said melody, I could cut endless superfluous entities from my meant-to-be-perfect playlist.  Of course, I'm not averse to two songs that are very similar if they both stand out as great for different reasons, I just don't want to be tricked into listening to a strictly inferior version of another song just because I really like the original, superior tune.

Only once I've narrowed down my FF music as much as possible will I move over to the other side of the board and focus on 'everyone else.'  Hopefully the combined list will stay under 1485 if I do this right.

I'm about halfway through Macross 7 and it's still fine.  I guess it was the second half that really dragged down the show's quality. . .


Jean-Luc Cougar said...

Thanks for these sort of economic/daily life sort of posts.

I know you are well read and wanted to ask:

What makes/constitutes a good life?

Diamed said...

A life surrounded by, and subject to, love, truth, and beauty.

Jean-Luc Cougar said...

How do you get there?

Diamed said...

It's impossible without help. Someone else has to affirm you, but you can't bend on your principles in order to gain their favor, so it's just down to luck at that point.

But as for refusing to live a lie, that's just a matter of willpower, and I've listed 500 different ways to appreciate the finest creations of mankind, so beauty is easy so long as you have an internet connection, an open mind and enough focus to pursue long-term objectives. Hiking and camping are also a really good path to appreciating nature's beauty I can vouch for.

Also, a beautiful woman in your arms is always helpful, but then you're right back to requiring help. If said beautiful woman would bear your children, you could be surrounded by smiles and laughter for all your days, but that requires an even more extraordinary stroke of luck.

I became a writer and wrote eleven fiction books in order to contribute my own beauty to the world, so maybe others could try something similar like painting, drawing, composing, playing an instrument, writing, photography. . . There's a lot of ways to be creative, and even one fan makes it worth it, though again that requires help.

All I an do is wish you the best of luck in finding that crucial support figure, but all the rest anyone can do if they set their mind to it. Halfway to heaven ain't so bad.