Wednesday, May 10, 2006

American = Idiot

Let's face it Americans are idiots. An American will dump battery acid in a stream and call it economic development. An American will take a dump in his next door neighbor's back yard and pretend it doesn't affect his water quality. An American will spend money he doesn't have, borrowing against the house he'll never own, to buy goods produced in China (clearly DeFazio was right in 2000) at 1/10th the production cost of the same goods made in the U.S. -- then wonder why his wages haven't risen in five years.

Finally, an American will re-elect a President of the United States with an IQ 5 points or so above mental retardation (how many other people do you know that can't pronounce the word PENINSULA) after his evil cabinet has led them into a war, tax cuts and consequent deficit spending destined to destroy their very way of life.

Yes. American = Idiot.

Therefore: buy oil; buy silver; buy copper; buy gold; buy platinum. Buy something real that cannot be created in China by workers making $0.50/hour. Because ALL of those basic commodities (and anything derived from them -- in other words everything) are and will continue to rise in U.S. dollar cost.

In other words, Americans are such idiots that the only way to get them to stop consuming like there is no tomorrow is to take away tomorrow or raise their prices drastically. DRASTIC it will be. For now anyway, I'm holding some hope for tomorrow.

But will this George Bush nightmare ever end?

Thursday, May 04, 2006

My art gallery is my window

Allow me to summarize and reiterate a basic philosophy.

Human problems have human solutions. And the only "hopeless" state is one of stupidity or ignorance. But unfortunately ignorance and delusion seem in greater supply today than at any time in my life and that is why I rant, preach, rail and annoy. Call me silly, but my own "prayer" is that someone may actually from time to time turn down their ipod, actually listen and actually think. If so, think about this...

Economics is not a hard science but merely an art/philosophy that attempts to model human behavior (life) in order to foster the greater good, basically to engender more (not less) social and political stability in human society.

Unfortunately, at least for the time being, human life is a zero sum game. You are born. You will die (absent some miraculous technological/magical change). Yet our present economic system, basically originated (or at least codified) by John Maynard Keynes, pretends, like Christianity, that there is a forever bigger "pie" out there for everyone, even the yet unborn -- an ever larger "pot of gold" at the end of every possible rainbow.

But reality, as any "educated" person should know (but unfortunately doesn't based on the status quo) is that it is only the NUMBERS Keynesians use to describe the pie -- not the actual pie -- getting bigger.

In other words, our system is based on INFLATION. Keynesians need a way to insure more money for more people over more time. Inflation is their answer. And while they seek to "control" it, it's still inflation. And any human born under the system and having lived a few decades can easily recognize this fact: having more dollars doesn't make you richer if every dollar buys less every day. Furthermore, the problem is exacerbated by the inability of our species to cope with the obvious environmental consequences of a hundred years of "economic development" in the name of individualism rather than collectivism.

And so I argue Keynesian economics is a failed system that must be abandoned as soon as possible in order to engender greater social and political stability in human society from this day forward. Yes, the present system worked well for a hundred years or so, but only because the size of the human population relative to its impact on the biosphere (planet earth) was discountable in economic terms. But as human impact and "risk" (of catastrophic extermination) has manifestly increased over the last hundred years, most of Keynes' assumptions are nulled and voided. Yet our present economic system remains anchored upon them and (surprise, surprise, surprise) this is a very very bad thing. Bad in the sense that the basic calculus of human progress is (or should be) that anything that doesn't work (unsustainable) is labeled "bad" while anything that does work (is sustainable) should be deemed "good." In other words, "laws" are merely sustainable, functional approximations of truth, in need of continuous refinement and improvement. Truth is unknowable and like "God" unattainable. Plato knew this several thousand years ago.

So Keynes' once good now bad system must be abandoned in favor of a more timely and representative (of the present human condition) zero sum system -- one that ascribes "value" to water that is not polluted, ore that is not dug up (at least not until it is essential and absolutely needed for the greater human good not the mere enrichment of a minority of the human population), unwanted babies that are not born, a sky that will not catch on fire, etc. etc. etc. In short, activities (like NOT consuming) that engender sustainability must simply be valued more highly than ones that do not.

In conclusion, by zero sum calculus, anyone living in Montana, Wyoming, or the equatorial rainforest (there are other places obviously) is far richer than they probably imagine by comparison to those in Washington DC, New York City, Beijing, Tokyo or San Francisco. This is by virtue of the fact that our "future" seems infinitely more sustainable (Last Best Place). After all, dying, polluted, dinosaurs with art galleries and leather upholstery are still dying, polluted, dinosaurs.

My art gallery is my window.

Ted Kaczynski may be insane, but he knew that much.