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Thread summary:

Increased number of vacant commercial buildings for lease or sale related to social and economic breakdown, bickering in Congress, market or command economy

 
Old 02-10-2009, 06:20 PM
 
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On my way to pick up some take out food this evening, a thought suddenly struck me as I looked at what seemed like an increasing number of vacant commercial buildings for lease or sale. I thought about the bickering in Congress, the stock market's reaction to Geither's bailout plan announcement this afternoon, and Paul Krugman's commentary in the New York Times yesterday about how the Senate version of the stimulus plan won't even begin to fix the growing hole in the economy while still creating incentives for behavior that helped get us into this mess in the first place ($15K credit for home buyers). I started to wonder about where all of this is going to lead long-term, since economic growth of any kind seems to be a pipe dream at this point.

The thought I had was that depending on how our esteemed leaders handle this mess, we are either headed toward complete chaos and social/economic breakdown, which will eventually result in the destruction of the state and allow a market economy to be rebuilt, or that we'll head toward the final nationalization and eventual internationalization of everything - property, the means of production, resources, you name it. Either scenario might take several generations to play out, but a new world order seems pretty inevitable at this point, especially given the globalization of the economy and the apparent dearth of good ideas both at home and abroad on how to get out of this mess.
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
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StoneOne - too many questions to process. I'll get back to ya.
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Old 02-13-2009, 02:55 AM
 
Location: western East Roman Empire
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I do not believe that it is an either/or proposition, but a question of degree. On top of that, there are what I would call the natural laws of economics that supersede human organization, though societies deal with them better or worse depending on how they are organized.

Having said that, the extent to which a society has a market economy or command economy depends significantly on its stage of historical development (development does not necessarily mean "progress", whatever that means).

Once upon a time, European - mostly British and other northern European - society on the North American continent was young with a new ideology compared to pre-industrial societies. To develop the continent and establish control over it, free market economy was the best tool.

The shift towards a command economy is more efficient for a class of people that have already attained a degree of wealth and power that they wish to preserve and possibly extend and, for whatever reasons, sharing opportunity with a middle class is no longer deemed expedient.

Any such analysis in this type of venue can only be crude, apologies therefore, but, very briefly, we may fairly state that US society is at that stage now and it is joining the mainstream of human history which, by the way, is mostly bleak.

The spirit of '76 was brilliant while it lasted, but now it's time to say goodnight.

Do not despair, however, because, in the long run, the fate of a nation, or even a civilization, is trivial, there truly are more important things.

Last edited by bale002; 02-13-2009 at 03:27 AM..
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Old 02-13-2009, 12:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bale002 View Post

Do not despair, however, because, in the long run, the fate of a nation, or even a civilization, is trivial, there truly are more important things.
Really? Such as what? Getting your next meal? Cause if that's what you're referring to we could adopt that jungle attitude and screw national allegiances and just dispossess the rich and poor of their spoils or lack thereof, expediting the establishment of anarchy. Since after all, social constructs aimed at the stability of a population (the construct of a Nation) is rather trivial in your estimation. Nah, I rather not be that hedonistic in thinking and give a sh%t about the social construct those who will succeed me will inherit. It's called selflessness, rather counter-intuitive concept to grasp, so I'll give you a pass.
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