The recent frenzy in the world’s stock markets had a number of people panicking about the possibility of (yet) another crash of the magnitude of October 1929, and the possibility of another Great Depression on the heels of the Great Depressions of 1873-1878, 1893-1898, 1930-1940, etc., etc., etc. . . . although we don’t call them “depressions” now, but “recessions” ‘cause “depression” is too scary and makes the government look bad.
Monday, August 31, 2015
Friday, August 28, 2015
This has been a relatively quiet week for those of us not involved in stock market speculation on the Wall Street high stakes gambling casino. By the way, if you ever want to make an enemy for life, tell someone a truth he or she doesn’t want to hear . . . and then be proven right (especially about the stock market).
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Yesterday we asked the eternal question, “What if nobody has $95 and nobody has a shovel if we want a ditch dug for $95?” This is actually a very simple question to answer once we understand that when we’re discussing saving, past or future, we’re not discussing what exists in the entire universe. No, we’re only talking about what is happening within the provisions of a specific contract.
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
We got into a discussion last week with someone who insisted that the whole concept of future savings and thus of Capital Homesteading is a scam: you can’t promise to deliver what doesn’t exist. To that, of course, we answer, “Why not? People do it all the time.”
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Here’s the secret to keeping calm amidst all the panic on Wall Street yesterday. All you have to do is keep on thing in mind: like the preacher’s watch on the pulpit during the sermon, “It don’t mean a damn’ thing.”
Monday, August 24, 2015
Last Thursday we looked at what “uniform and stable” means in terms of a currency standard, and what happens when the currency standard isn't what you could call standard. Today we’re looking at what happens when the price of the standard rises or falls relative to other prices.
Friday, August 21, 2015
As of this writing, the Dow is dropping like a stone. If you believe that the secondary market is in any way related to reality, don’t worry. “They” (meaning the people who control money and credit) will take steps to “reflate” (as Irving Fisher put it) the money supply to continue shifting purchasing power away from producers and toward speculators, gamblers, and the non-productive . . . after they’ve taken their profits from short-selling, of course. . . .
Thursday, August 20, 2015
The number one rule for a reserve currency — the currency into which other currencies can be converted and in terms of which they are valued — is that it must (and that means must) be asset-backed. This does not mean that the asset you use to value the reserve currency must back the currency — “gold standard,” for example, does not necessarily mean that the currency is backed by gold, only that the currency is valued in terms of gold.
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Replacing a debt-backed currency with an asset-backed currency and restoring an actual standard to the currency can be devastating, relatively painless, or positively beneficial. It all depends on how bad the situation is, and how it is done.
Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Yesterday we looked at the fundamental insanity of having a flexible standard for anything. Today we look at what might make a good standard of value, especially when the idea of having a standard in the first place has become an alien concept.
Monday, August 17, 2015
In the musical play Guys and Dolls, Big Jule, a well-heeled (in both senses*), out-of-town shooter (in both senses) who gets into Nathan Detroit’s Oldest Established Permanent Floating Crap Game in New York, has a sure-fire means of winning every time he rolls the bones. Big Jule, who has gone straight since he was a kid as is proven by the fact that he has never once been convicted following his many arrests, has dice without pips.
Friday, August 14, 2015
Thursday, August 13, 2015
Yesterday we looked at the whole concept of “flexible standard.” We decided that having a flexible standard is another way of saying we have no standard at all. After all, what is a yard if yesterday it was 36 inches, today is 18 inches, and tomorrow it is 83 inches? And what do you mean by “inch”?
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
A Southern Lady of our acquaintance (please note the capitalization), has been known to turn her nose up at certain things on the grounds that they do not meet her “standuhds.” Being mostly “standuhds” (or, if you prefer — which we do — “standards”) relating to certain social mores, these are sometimes a trifle flexible, possibly even a little vague at times.
Tuesday, August 11, 2015
Last week we came across the following quote from Abraham Lincoln. At least, that’s who it was attributed to, so we’ll take the internet’s word for it. (The internet knows everything.) Anyway, the (alleged) quote was, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”
Monday, August 10, 2015
Once in a while we get a question that is a little out of our “core competency,” i.e., economic and social justice. It’s not that we don’t know something (or even everything) about the subject of the question, it’s just that it’s not something with which we usually deal — like going to the grocery store to buy laundry soap. Sure, they carry a full line of it . . . but what, exactly, does laundry soap have to do with groceries (besides cleaning your clothes when you spill soup all over them, that is)?
Friday, August 7, 2015
Okay, Commander Rob W., this one’s for you. Cindy will really appreciate it . . . or really get angry, this time. This week people have been commemorating the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima seventy years ago. (We note in passing that we don’t recall anyone saying anything a few years back when the seventieth anniversary of the bombing of Coventry in November of 1940 came around.)
Thursday, August 6, 2015
According to conventional wisdom, there are too many people on earth, and the problem is only going to get worse. We won’t ask “too many people for what?”, as the answers often get contradictory and evasive, e.g., “For the earth to support,” a popular answer, is demonstrably false, and requires innumerable qualifications to make it plausible.
Wednesday, August 5, 2015
Louis Kelso once commented that socialism is a commuter train, a “local,” while communism is an express. Both socialism and communism end up the same place — the abolition of private property and State control of virtually every aspect of life — but communism destroys the basis of State, Church, and Family faster and more efficiently than socialism.
Tuesday, August 4, 2015
People these days talk a lot about the “sharing economy,” although no one seems to know exactly what that means. Some of the articles we’ve seen take the approach that the rich should share what they have with the poor, while others that the poor should share what they have with other poor. Either way, somebody seems to have to give up something in order for somebody else to have it; some people gain while others lose.
Monday, August 3, 2015
Stop me if you’ve heard this. On second thought, don’t stop me. Just read it, and Do Something to get the ball rolling. We’ve found that far too many people are extraordinarily shy about letting others in on a good thing — even if it really is a case of “the more, the merrier.” Capital Homesteading is one of those things. It works better the more owners of capital you have, just as in a labor-centric economy, things work better if more people can and do work.