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Sunday, March 22, 2020

Hoarding vs debt

It's fascinating to see people preaching against "hoarding" when they have no problem with debt-funded purchases. Both involve pulling the demand curve forward, but debt is considerably worse than hoarding because you're making the purchases with money you don't have.

And yet, people have no problem when it's done in the much more harmful manner, mostly because they don't understand the underlying mechanics or the inevitable consequences. Whereas, they are capable of grasping the cause-and-effect resulting in an empty shelf at the local supermarket.

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99 Comments:

Blogger Kraemer March 22, 2020 1:44 PM  

Agree 110%. I believe that the collapse of the usury machine will kill way more people than the virus

Blogger Silly but True March 22, 2020 1:47 PM  

Debt is characterized as a normal, fundamental, feature of modern contemporary Western society. Non-debt instruments and purchases are the outlier.

Whereas hoarding is typically viewed the outlier: either prudent but unreachable goal in times of need, or more commonly a mental disorder, otherwise.

Thankfully, things seem to be changing on both fronts.

Blogger TMLutas March 22, 2020 2:29 PM  

I think that the Church examined this and got it right (give or take money/time preferences which is a 1500s extension from the school of Salamanca) all the way back in the time of St. John Chrysostom ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Chrysostom ).

Chrysostom is right. Hoarding is bad. Debt isn't so great either.

The empty shelves, however, are the result of government intervention, making price movement to the market clearing price illegal. That's got to stop. We've gotten an information revolution going on. There's no reason why we can't have sophisticated pricing that does better than the current system to keep shelves stocked and the economy moving forward.

Your pantry is a defense tool. Treat it like that and you'll need minor adjustments in case of a pandemic, no big deal and your habits will get you to hit the store early before the panic happens.

Blogger VFM #7634 March 22, 2020 2:33 PM  

Debt is characterized as a normal, fundamental, feature of modern contemporary Western society.

Only because we gave up Christianity and let the usurers gain full control of the economy.

Blogger Rakshasa March 22, 2020 2:38 PM  

It's not about the demand curve being pulled 'forward' that they object to.

You aren't really pulling the demand curve forward in the long term, and it would be more correct to say you are smoothing out the curve.

And that is the core of what they hate: less opportunities to speculate.

Blogger MadFrank March 22, 2020 2:46 PM  

What worse that debt? Hoarding with debt.

Blogger Rakshasa March 22, 2020 2:58 PM  

What's worse than debt?

Having real physical things you need, and then debt.

I feel smarter every day.

Blogger Silent Draco March 22, 2020 3:01 PM  

Is one cause of debt the hoarding of money, to cause a scarcity and drive up its price?

Blogger Damelon Brinn March 22, 2020 3:05 PM  

I'm especially enjoying the urbanites who are demanding that authorities take food away from rural "hoarders" and distribute it. For cripes sake, it's only been a week and they're already falling apart.

Blogger Uncle John's Band March 22, 2020 3:07 PM  

Fruit fly time preferences are part of it. Hoarding stops you from getting what you want now. Going beyond that requires thought and MPAI.

Blogger TiredPoorHungry March 22, 2020 3:07 PM  

Ok so I am to "assume" that the general consensus here on the blog is that this situation is real. Not trying to be a "smart boy", just asking. I had my doubts because of the the way MSM is pushing it. So now they are telling the truth?

I had my doubts about the Chinese because they were falling like actors, careful not to smash their face. No one dropping like flies here outside of Chicago.

Was really wanting confirmation from Vox since it has reportedly hit Italy hard.

Blogger Cloudbuster March 22, 2020 3:10 PM  

Why go small? Engage in debt-fueled hoarding!

Blogger Nathan Hornok March 22, 2020 3:11 PM  

So far, the economic impacts seem to be a decrease of demand in many areas of the economy that are not really necessary. Money is being saved because it's not being spent on restaurants, or unnecessary flights and hotels. This is hard on the jobs in those industries, but would have a limited impact on things as a whole.

However, if this goes on long enough to start to affect the production of real necessities (food, clothing, machinery, etc) because workers are scared to go out, then the supply will contract right as everyone starts receiving their stupid government checks, which could cause runaway inflation.

But my understanding of macro-economics is not sophisticated enough to understand how the debt based money supply affects all of this. I hope Vox does a darkstream to educate all of us dummies about how this stuff works.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd March 22, 2020 3:12 PM  

TMLutas wrote:We've gotten an information revolution going on. There's no reason why we can't have sophisticated pricing that does better than the current system to keep shelves stocked and the economy moving forward.
Hayek has a Nobel Prize that says you're crazy.

Blogger VD March 22, 2020 3:14 PM  

Is one cause of debt the hoarding of money, to cause a scarcity and drive up its price?

Absolutely not.

Blogger TiredPoorHungry March 22, 2020 3:15 PM  

Ok so I am to "assume" that the general consensus here on the blog is that this situation is real. Not trying to be a "smart boy", just asking. I had my doubts because of the the way MSM is pushing it. So now they are telling the truth?

I had my doubts about the Chinese because they were falling like actors, careful not to smash their face. No one dropping like flies here outside of Chicago.

Was really wanting confirmation from Vox since it has reportedly hit Italy hard.

Blogger VD March 22, 2020 3:15 PM  

I am to "assume" that the general consensus here on the blog is that this situation is real.

More or less, yes.

Blogger Heian-kyo Dreams March 22, 2020 3:16 PM  

"Hoarding" now means having more than two days worth of prepackaged food at home.

In meatspace all those complaining about hoarders didn't have anything in their houses and/or don't know how to cook. Interesting times ahead!

Blogger Doktor Jeep March 22, 2020 3:28 PM  

Behold as the definition of hoarding morphs and shifts to fit The Narrative.
And with a touch of victimism too. There is oppression Olympics, now we'll see "deserve to have" Olympics.
Because these people never stop.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash March 22, 2020 3:32 PM  

TMLutas wrote:The empty shelves, however, are the result of government intervention, making price movement to the market clearing price illegal.
But that's not what happened, and not what happens. Walmart and Kroger did not raise their prices because they value their relationship with their customers. Instead you get clowns like the guy in Tennessee who bought all the hand sanitizer in his county, 17,000 bottles, expecting to sell it all at ridiculous 30,000% markups. In other words, the rent-seekers moved in for a quick exploitation of a panic. In other words, he created a local shortage in order to forcibly extract as much money as he could from his neighbors.

Blogger TiredPoorHungry March 22, 2020 3:42 PM  

For those who hoarded all the toliet paper and now want to know how many wraps around the head make an effective mask. 1st..I don't know. 2nd..Consider the optics.

Blogger Robert Browning March 22, 2020 3:53 PM  

Should the currency fail, toilet paper is a product needed and used by all and can be easily exchange for other goods.

Blogger TheMaleRei March 22, 2020 3:55 PM  

@19
There is a special place in Hell for people like that.
And he should be treated with contempt and hostility forever afterwards for it.

Blogger lynnefoghart March 22, 2020 3:55 PM  

O, Prognosticator of prognosticators! Your daily offering:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/03/21/debt-jubilee-is-only-way-avoid-depression/

Blogger Zaklog the Great March 22, 2020 3:56 PM  

The Bible describes debt as slavery (Prov 22:7). This is neither a metaphor, nor an exaggeration. The vast majority of Americans (myself included) are slaves because of our own stupid choices. And what our governments have done with debt? That is evil and insane in a way difficult to describe.

Blogger TheMaleRei March 22, 2020 3:58 PM  

Damelon Brinn wrote:I'm especially enjoying the urbanites who are demanding that authorities take food away from rural "hoarders" and distribute it. For cripes sake, it's only been a week and they're already falling apart.

There's a reason why so many stories / scenarios about SHTF that the government specifically targets the preppers and anyone outside the cities.

You can't reason with a baying hoard that eschewed anything beyond hedonism, usury, sodomy & scissoring and has only the shortest of time preferences.

So, what do the government sociopaths do? Jump in front of the crowd and pretend to lead.

Blogger MATT March 22, 2020 4:06 PM  

I'm lucky in that Cuomo has deemed my job essential, and I work for a self funding owner/developer on a skelwton crew jobsite. Have to get in as many days as I can. Should probably stop wasting it on drop dead gorgeous college girls for the time.being.

Blogger weka March 22, 2020 4:09 PM  

It's real. It's fairly lethal for the very old. It will take the health system down unless we use draconian public health measures such as quarantine.

The press want us to panic and the politicians want us depending on them. I expect the state will fail I'd this goes on.

Family first, church second and neighnour next. You cannot fix the town 20 miles away.

Blogger MATT March 22, 2020 4:09 PM  

B-b-b-but John Stossel said price gouging is good

Blogger Nathan Hornok March 22, 2020 4:13 PM  

@11. TiredPoorHungry
I've gone back and forth on the "realness" of this Covid thing. My most recent skepticism was based on the fact the Flu mortality is based on the assumption that 10x more people have the flu than ever get tested, which drives mortality rates down. If we applied the same logic to Covid, then the mortality would be far lower than it appears.

But the proof is in the pudding. It's the actual deaths that indicate something real is happening. Winter 2018 had a really bad flu season in US. At it's peak, 220 people died per day from Flu in the US (you can find this from the following CDC page https://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/index.htm scroll down to the section on mortality, and there is a link to the actual data). The last two days, roughly 700 dead per day in Italy, a much smaller country than US. So this looks real.

Blogger Doktor Jeep March 22, 2020 4:15 PM  

Debt should only ever have been something for organizations, not individuals.

Blogger Rowan March 22, 2020 4:25 PM  

Here’s a question.

We have enough money in the bank to cover expenses for the next 7-8 months. We’re both working right now and are likely to remain employed.

Should we drain the bank account and just keep enough in there month by month for expenses and put the rest in the safe?

Husband has a few different retirement plans going and all took a hit. Our friend and financial advisor said let it stay there for when the market recovers.

Will it? Do we sell stocks now and hoard the cash or wait for a rebound?

Blogger Cinco March 22, 2020 4:28 PM  

I am about to start “hoarding” local deer out of season if the grocery stores didn’t stock some damn Bisquick

Blogger MichaelJMaier March 22, 2020 4:31 PM  

I'm not even sure how much hoarding is going on. Consider that you have about doubled the food and toiletries needs for families where kids were in school.

"On time delivery" has been the status quo for years, hasn't it?

Then you throw in a monkey wrench that doubles the demand curve for some products. That can't work well. And it isn't working well.

Now you're a mom buying groceries and there's meat available. Yesterday, there wasn't. Do you buy twice as much now or "play nice" and assume it will be there next time you need it?

Blogger TiredPoorHungry March 22, 2020 4:34 PM  

Just received our second confirmation from Italy. Maria says everyone is quarantined in their houses and the national guard are patrolling the streets.

I was wondering, whose national guard? Are the US troops having a drill near the Vatican in an attempt to repatriate (hoard) more gold for the new monetary system?

Blogger Jack Amok March 22, 2020 4:43 PM  

Is one cause of debt the hoarding of money, to cause a scarcity and drive up its price?

That's almost 180 degrees wrong. Counterfeiters don't horde money to drive up its price. They print as much as they can get away with and use it to trade for non-counterfeit forms of wealth before their phony money is discovered and devalued. Debt is how almost all of our money is created today. The people creating the debt behave like counterfeiters.

Blogger Simon March 22, 2020 5:00 PM  

Both involve pulling the demand curve forward, but debt is considerably worse than hoarding because you're making the purchases with money you don't have.

That's a great, concise way to put it. I will use it.

Blogger Duke Norfolk March 22, 2020 5:12 PM  

Damelon Brinn wrote:I'm especially enjoying the urbanites who are demanding that authorities take food away from rural "hoarders" and distribute it.

Just curious, where are you seeing this? I'd imagine maybe FB? Comment sections?

It rather shocking to see it come out so quickly. Wonderful.

Blogger Duke Norfolk March 22, 2020 5:14 PM  

@34

Yep, exactly. Though I'd bet that the target of the "hoarding" accusations will mostly be those of us who prepped well ahead, not those rushing to the stores now. (The nerve of us, right?)

Blogger Zeroh Tollrants March 22, 2020 5:14 PM  

Are you suffering from mental illness? Unlike a certain event from WW2, there are mass graves and people with videos showing stacks of folks in body bags. A for the media, why are you watching/listening to THAT?!?
I'd rather have the air AIDS.

Blogger Doktor Jeep March 22, 2020 5:14 PM  

This issue with price fixing versus rationing is a perfect tell as to the state of our society.
No price fixing? Boom. Everything just doubled. Florida has price gouging laws because the minute you had a hurricane coming in every damned fake American running a store would break out the price tag gun.
Fixed prices? Boom. Here's the asshole with the heavy duty cart piled high to the ceiling and a shit-eating from on his face.
What's next, rationing? Oh that will be fun, and the olive on the shit sandwich that finally teaches everybody what we mean when we say "tribalism".
There was an article recently about white supremacists trying to get in on the Corona action online, or something. The usual breathless screed written by Grimma Wormtonguesheckelbergstein. What's really happening is realists are going to be pointing out the diversatopic polyglot BS and anything less than Hug-a-Chinaman is racist.

Blogger Silent Draco March 22, 2020 5:22 PM  

Thanks, Jack. Figured that out while cleaning up from long stint of garden work, needed to cool off. Brain cramp - should have thought first, waited to post.

Blogger Damelon Brinn March 22, 2020 5:33 PM  

Just curious, where are you seeing this?

The chans. What makes it funny is that in every urban-vs-rural discussion there over the years, the urbanites have always claimed they would have it better in any SHTF scenario because they have the infrastructure, processing facilities, law enforcement, distribution, health care, entertainment, etc. They would claim that if things really got bad, rural people would starve and die and they'd be comfy.

Here we are a week into what for many people is just an unexpected vacation, and I haven't even gotten any food out of storage yet, but they're talking about confiscation raids. Of course, they aren't talking about doing it themselves.

Blogger Servant March 22, 2020 5:38 PM  

@Draco money saving evens out the economy. Higher lows and lower highs.

Our debt based society has to avoid it because it causes slowdown. The slower money moves the more inflation is realized. That's why the markets have computers funneling money around constantly.

Money hoarding is what large companies do sometimes. The proverbial war chest. It has the potential to do a lot of damage if dumped into one place I guess.

Debt lowers the value of money, and debt instruments are cheaper all the time. It's not about making money it's about power

Blogger A guy in a dusty attic March 22, 2020 6:07 PM  

Ha haa, clown World.

Blogger Arthur Isaac March 22, 2020 6:26 PM  

There used to be a world where Aesop praised the creatures that saved up for Winter and didn't live beyond their means.

Good is evil and evil is good.

Blogger CM March 22, 2020 6:30 PM  

The chans. What makes it funny is that in every urban-vs-rural discussion there over the years, the urbanites have always claimed they would have it better in any SHTF scenario because they have the infrastructure, processing facilities, law enforcement, distribution, health care, entertainment, etc. They would claim that if things really got bad, rural people would starve and die and they'd be comfy.

Well that's precious.

My argument for why urban is more left than rural is because they have higher interdependence and low social trust, so you need more government to mediate the necessary relationships.

Rural is more independent and high social trust.

SHTF scenarios increases dependency and exaggerates social trust. Guess which one fares better? The one already dependent on a society with worsening trust? Or the one with some dependence on a society that would show up with guns and stand shoulder to shoulder to protect a neighbor?

Blogger Jack Amok March 22, 2020 6:36 PM  

Thanks, Jack. Figured that out while cleaning up from long stint of garden work, needed to cool off.

I just got done weeding a planting bed myself. Yeah, money has a way of confusing everyone at some point - it's an indirection that can easily obscure reality. One of the reasons the finance industry is so dangerous.

Blogger Johnny March 22, 2020 7:11 PM  

Rowan wrote:Should we drain the bank account and just keep enough in there month by month for expenses and put the rest in the safe?

We could have a situation where money in the bank becomes unavailable, but I think it unlikely to last even if it happens. The way we run things these days the much more likely problem you will have with your money is inflation. The money you have at home in currency will go down in value as fast as your bank deposits.

A liquidity crises generally means that money becomes unavailable. If I remember correctly, back when Alan Greenspan was chairmen of the Federal Reserve, he was on record as being willing to furnish the banks with however much currency they needed to overcome a liquidity crises.

It would work like this. Your bank would lend your savings deposit to the Federal Reserve (or Treasury?). The value of your saving account would then be transferred to your bank in the form of cash. The bank would give you the cash for your account, but the Treasury would retain the value of your savings account. If and when the cash started to flow back to the banks, your bank would have to buy back from the Treasury your savings account when you redeposit the cash and reopen the savings account. Guessing to an extent, at least that is how I think it would work.

The big problem if there is one, and there could easily be, would be if people change their spending behavior. If everybody starts spending more it would be inflation here we go. If people quit spending and horde, a decline sets in, recession or depression.

Trump looks upset to me these days, and with good reason. This flu crap-ola stuff could trigger a financial crises.

Blogger John Rockwell March 22, 2020 7:24 PM  

@Duke Norfolk

Its like preppers and rurals are damned Kulaks that must have their propery confiscated for the good of thd "people"

Blogger John Rockwell March 22, 2020 7:26 PM  

@Damelon Brinn

They will do what the Soviet Union did to the Kulaks and Ukrainians.

Blogger Azimus March 22, 2020 7:31 PM  

47. CMMarch 22, 2020 6:30 PM
Guess which one fares better? The one already dependent on a society with worsening trust? Or the one with some dependence on a society that would show up with guns and stand shoulder to shoulder to protect a neighbor?


These are good thoughts, and the long term advantage lies with rural - if fair-play is assumed. However it doesn't take much leafing through history to see that fair-play is not really the way things have went. In most states, the governing apparatus lies in the largest one or two cities, and certainly the political power that controls it does. Consider if that political power issued a relocation mandate from the country to the city with 72hrs to comply, followed by "shoot-on-sight" orders against "marauders." How would you handle this? Hide? Fight? While you're deciding what to do, police assets have come to the countryside to "assist" and discourage the nucleation of a resistance. You will not have the luxury of being left alone to prepare some kind of plan, and chances are "concerned citizens for our neighbors safety" will be organized to help get you out.

There are a host of other things that could be done from shutting off the power grid to burning farmhouses that could be used to pacify the countryside. In the short-term, the urban holds almost all the cards.

The key is to get to the long-term. With each passing day the advantages of the urban wane - they stop paying the cops, there's nothing to buy, things break down. It seems to me the best strategy would be to shower the city with the things it needs - food, energy, whatever, transport resources. This eliminates fear, which dissipates political momentum for extreme action, and simultaneously takes the moral high ground AND puts the urban in the rural's debt. By the next harvest the urban will be weeping tears of joy that the rural heroes saved them. They'll throw you a parade. So much better than throwing lead - a scenario I can't see the rural winning when all the cards are laid down.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash March 22, 2020 7:33 PM  

Except the infantry is made up of Ukranians and Kulaks.

Blogger Damelon Brinn March 22, 2020 7:36 PM  

@51 That's their fantasy, yes.

Blogger Slagenthor March 22, 2020 7:39 PM  

Roughly 200 people, each week, every week for 6 months. The middle of the CDC's 95%CI deaths range was around 35000, iirc. The high end of that range was around 52000 people.

From that same data in the 2018-2019 flu season in the US: if you were 50 - 64 years old and were hospitalized, your mortality rate was over 5 percent. 65 or over and it was over 9%, in *US hospitals*.

CV-19 will have a final mortality rate less than half of Influenza A, but because it is probably 2-3 times more contagious, can still cause a lot of misery all by itself.

Blogger Harris March 22, 2020 7:46 PM  

I have long been a buy to stock shopper, not a just-in-time shopper. When you grow up living way out in the country miles from town, and there are regular blizzards that shut down traffic, you learn to be prepared. I have two full freezers, and a full pantry - probably 4-6 months supply.

Blogger Noah B. March 22, 2020 8:09 PM  

Rural dwellers are more than capable of resisting some sudden attempt to relocate them. The major threat lies in the slow, steady economic assault waged against them by the banks and tax collectors as well as the increasing trends toward automating everything. Just look at how much agriculture is done by huge corporations now. Those corporations will have headquarters in places like Omaha or Midland but be owned by a private equity firm that may not even be based in the US. It's a re-creation of the feudal system.

Blogger Arthur Isaac March 22, 2020 8:14 PM  

Anyone watch Stephen Molyneux's interview with Dr. Paul Cottrell? Flubros weep.

Blogger Guy Incognito March 22, 2020 8:35 PM  

My wife has extreme couponed for years.

Her storage room could keep us operational for a year.

I'm pretty nonchalant about the whole shutdown thing.

Most likey scenario is I get a couple of weeks off work followed by all the overtime I can handle.

I truly don't understand middle class people who are only one month away from bankruptcy, yet have 80,000 in cars in their driveway.

Honestly, If the government actually sends me a check, I'm buying a bunch of calls on oil companies.

Blogger Avalanche March 22, 2020 8:52 PM  

@50 "Its like preppers and rurals are damned Kulaks that must have their propery confiscated for the good of the "people"

Same folks doing the confiscatin' eh?

Blogger God Emperor Memes March 22, 2020 9:08 PM  

Of course the Chinese are lying. That doesn't mean that this isn't real.

Blogger furor kek tonicus ( what do you get if you make a honey bear Gen Sec of China? Winnie the Flu ) March 22, 2020 9:24 PM  

5. Rakshasa March 22, 2020 2:38 PM
You aren't really pulling the demand curve forward in the long term


absolutely false.

there wouldn't be this huge US market for McMansions if the demand curve wasn't being pulled forward in a very significant way.

and by "significant way", i mean making Debt Slaves out of your children and grandchildren.



8. Silent Draco March 22, 2020 3:01 PM
Is one cause of debt the hoarding of money, to cause a scarcity and drive up its price?



no.

the "price" of money has been falling ( inflation ) ever since the Federal Reserve was instituted.

which is what central banks always do, and which is why the first two US central banks were done away with.

because they destroyed the value of the "money".

as the value of money is destroyed, it forces more and more people to take on more and more debt to buy more of the necessities of life.

as a fer instance, long term mortgages are, historically, a fairly recent phenomenon. most people used to have their homes paid off in 10-15 years.

but that was back when home prices were a reasonable multiple of avg annual income.



11. TiredPoorHungry March 22, 2020 3:07 PM
So now they are telling the truth?


the empty shelves are a fact. you can see this for yourself.

the media explanation for this is still likely to be a lie ... or just stupid. Fredo Cuomo is "respected" as a journalist, after all.

Blogger David The Good March 22, 2020 9:25 PM  

I would grab that cash and keep it close. Also convert some to gold/silver, guns/ammo.

Blogger Jay Will March 22, 2020 9:54 PM  

I don't get this debt thing at all. Its a great wizard trick. Money money money.

Blogger Jay Will March 22, 2020 10:01 PM  

If I don't do smart boy I got no voice.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine March 22, 2020 10:14 PM  

"Instead you get clowns like the guy in Tennessee who bought all the hand sanitizer in his county, 17,000 bottles, expecting to sell it all at ridiculous 30,000% markups. In other words, the rent-seekers moved in for a quick exploitation of a panic. In other words, he created a local shortage in order to forcibly extract as much money as he could from his neighbors."

This. I'd been speculating that this sort of person is why the TP shortages exist from the moment I first heard about them, and it's been confirmed, people bought out the TP and are now scalping for it. Probably the first person to do it triggered a hundred other grabblers in a hundred other places to do the same thing, creating shortages where none should exist.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine March 22, 2020 10:20 PM  

"My argument for why urban is more left than rural is because they have higher interdependence and low social trust, so you need more government to mediate the necessary relationships."

It's more fundamental than that. Large cities are the most artificial environments we've ever created outside of submarines and spacecraft. They're literally insulated from reality in most ways.

Blogger Doktor Jeep March 22, 2020 10:37 PM  

@47
Two weeks after all food is cut off the people living in those gentrified areas will be food for those who don't.

Blogger sammibandit March 22, 2020 11:39 PM  

I must have met dozens of Kulaks when I worked in the Western country part of Alberta. Lots of Kozaks (Cossacks?) too, but I don't know if those overlap or not.

Blogger jarheadljh March 23, 2020 12:24 AM  

Kraemer wrote:Agree 110%. I believe that the collapse of the usury machine will kill way more people than the virus

Here's one that will bake your noodle : how many people are *alive* because of resources that don't actually exist being allocated to their parents which were then converted into children?

Blogger Homesteader March 23, 2020 12:25 AM  

The issue of "we shall destroy the Kulaks as a class" in the U.S., will probably play out a bit differently.

The American Kulaks are HIGHLY armed, and TRAIN.

The American Kulaks control the logistical infrastructure.

The American Kulaks have read their Solshenitzyn.

The American Kukaks have looked FORWARD to this day. Prepping is an American movement.

The American military, even now, is mostly motivated by said Kulaks; they might object to smiteing their friends and families.

So-a second Holodomor might not work out as planned; the scions of the lower east side Bolsheviks may be surprised at how poorly it would go down for their side...

Blogger Snidely Whiplash March 23, 2020 12:31 AM  

Literally until the invention of the electrical grid, sewage treatment and antibiotics, every large city was a net population sink.
#supportCF

Blogger pyrrhus March 23, 2020 1:16 AM  

@72. Quite right Snidely....London had an annual mortality rate around 6% for much of the 19th century, and relied on inflow from the countryside to maintain its population.

Blogger TMLutas March 23, 2020 1:17 AM  

@14 The current system is that you can't raise prices to market clearing rates or the cops come and arrest you. A sophisticated improvement over status quo is to program your cashier stations so that the first x gallons of milk is normal price with progressively higher prices for every gallon thereafter.

The populist impulse that put in the price gouging laws isn't going to fully go away but you can lessen the bad effects.

Hayek's well deserved Nobel prize doesn't address what I'm talking about, which is a reduction in the amount of the market subject to stupid price controls, something I think is achievable.

@20 there's a free market way to restrain speculators like that fellow in Tennessee. It's called raising prices. But beyond a limit, it's illegal to do under anti-gouging laws. Modifying the anti-gouging laws so that the first bottle of hand sanitizer is normal price while the 10th is 10x the price or whatever progressive price curve ends up doing the job means everyone can go to the store and get their normal supply, even an extra bottle to have over that. Filling up multiple shopping carts gets very expensive fast.

Blogger Roman Daoist March 23, 2020 2:14 AM  

I can grasp empty shelves at the supermarket. Third day I tried to buy normal good-old table salt (90c for 500g I think) but couldn't because all sold out. So I bought what was left, a 400g pack of Australian Natural Sea Salt for AUD $7.50.

I'm not sure but I think that's what rape feels like.

And I don't like it!

Blogger Uncle Maffoo March 23, 2020 2:38 AM  

Many Americans, myself included, could withstand going without food for 2-4 weeks. If only I could sleep through this whole thing like a bear.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash March 23, 2020 2:50 AM  

TMLutas wrote:Hayek's well deserved Nobel prize doesn't address what I'm talking about...

Isn't it time we stopped listening to our (((ancient friends))), given that every time we adopt their economic ideas, they wind up with all our wealth?

Blogger urthshu March 23, 2020 4:06 AM  

>"Ok so I am to "assume" that the general consensus here on the blog is that this situation is real. Not trying to be a "smart boy", just asking. I had my doubts because of the the way MSM is pushing it. So now they are telling the truth?"

I understand. You're not seeing it with your own eyes and naturally distrust media.

I'm currently making calls aiding investigations for cases, speaking directly to infected people and their families, contacts, etc. I can tell you that it's a real infection putting people in hospitals with life threatening symptoms and spreading like wildfire, all the patterns of spread you'd expect are present. I can tell you that health departments everywhere regionally are set up like disaster command centers and working obscene hours and that every medical person I've spoken to takes it seriously, some with fear but most bearing up.

Blogger urthshu March 23, 2020 4:22 AM  

>"The American Kulaks control the logistical infrastructure"

And that's cause for great hope for our future. Taking a different tack here, I could see a lot of the kids who left places like the Midwest returning and bringing back their entrepreneurship to set up bread and butter things like TP distribution or sanitizer production if only to be closer to family after this experience. Flyover country will benefit more and coastal cities will be less attractive going forward.

Blogger xavier March 23, 2020 5:36 AM  

The Italian government has closed all the factories. So when this pandemic is over I suspect we'll see a lot of debt jublies/debt reduction legislation

Blogger Brett baker March 23, 2020 6:00 AM  

Because you wouldn't know they were middle class if they didn't have an $80,000 car in front of their McMansion they bought with a 3% down payment.

Blogger JamesB.BKK March 23, 2020 6:37 AM  

Each unit purchased within 1 week per end user after 2 units @ 5x the price, escalating each additional unit, would help drive better behavior.

Blogger DonReynolds March 23, 2020 7:01 AM  

Once again, people in otherwise responsible positions, talk out both sides of their mouth. Hoarding is considered equivalent to the old crime of forestalling...which it is not. And those who buy more than one or two (now the limit at the checkout) could not be anything other than a dirty pig. Just exactly HOW anyone is expected to shelter in place (voluntarily quarantine) without purchasing enough to last the next month or so? Of course, in order to buy enough to limit trips to the grocery store (and thus limit exposure to the virus) is counter to the idea that I must return to the store every day to buy only the amount allowed.

Another irrational aspect of the anti-hoarding rules is that the purchase limits are hard limits instead of flexible. A person with six children (like myself) might need more than a single person. How many people you are shopping to feed is not part of the calculated limit.

Of course, my main complaint is that I can only eat low-sodium foods, so the grand variety available to everyone else, simply does not exist for me. On the aisle of canned vegetables, there may only be three or four that I can actually eat under normal circumstances. Much of the food in grocery stores is loaded with salt, so when I find a low-sodium selection, I always buy several. Oh, no you don't. That must be hoarding. You are hoggin it all for yourself.

Listen....I will gladly give up all of the foods that I am not allowed to eat in trade for more of those that I can eat. Can we work out a trade? How about a pound of cold cuts for another can of crushed pineapple?

Blogger Doktor Jeep March 23, 2020 7:59 AM  

Don't bank on a jubilee.
No pun intended.
Notice how the house of representatives gave the banks a bailout in 2008 before anybody knows what's going on, but giving checks to people? Well now all of a sudden we have to be careful and debate this forever.
Shows you on which side of the toast the butter is on. It may be up to the president...oh there's Kushner in the background. Never mind.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd March 23, 2020 8:50 AM  

Snidely Whiplash wrote:Isn't it time we stopped listening to our (((ancient friends))), given that every time we adopt their economic ideas, they wind up with all our wealth?
When a Jooooo gets something right, it's still right, even though Joooooo.
Hayek's information problem explains why central planning cannot be made to work: there is too much information to be able to invert the matrix and solve the equation, and no way to elicit the information in the first place.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd March 23, 2020 8:58 AM  

TiredPoorHungry wrote:Ok so I am to "assume" that the general consensus here on the blog is that this situation is real.
We know the official story is bogus. That doesn't mean there isn't a real event they're lying about.
``We know it's a lie'' doesn't mean that we know the truth, it just means that they are trying somehow to misdirect. It's like a magic show: when the magician says ``nothing up my sleeve,'' you know the missing coin is anywhere but the sleeve.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 March 23, 2020 9:22 AM  

My wife and I have been debt-free about 8 years now.

Yes, I still rent. Because I'd rather rent than sign a 30-year lease with a bank.

The 30-year mortgage gained prominence back in the early 1980s, shortly after mortgage-backed securities were created. But I'm sure it had nothing to do with greed and everything to do with giving poor people homes they couldn't afford and had no business buying to begin with.

Blogger Oswald March 23, 2020 9:26 AM  

Americans are hoarders as a general rule compared to the rest of the world. Part of this is driven by brainwashing to be good consumers. Some of it is driven by how readily money is available including through credit as well as how available goods are.

We should not be surprised by the hoarding we see going on.

As a side note: A preacher that I know, who has preached the end of the world for 40 years, and has been wrong for 40 years, when asked about this current situation, said assuredly that this was not the end! He has always been wrong, so either it is the end or and this is my prediction, he will change his mind and start declaring it the end or beginning of the end. He to a certain extent and I dare say all end times preachers are false prophets. That may be harsh, but if what they say does not come true are they not false? Would not my Dad, Uncles, Aunts, Grandparents, and Cousins been better served by a different message before they died. Were they living in the end times?

Blogger DeepThought March 23, 2020 9:40 AM  

Once you let the grabblers get in positions of power, it is only a matter of time before they destroy your country.

Not IF but WHEN.

Grabblers are unable to run a country on their own. Take Israel, the welfare queen of foreign aid. Without foreign aid, Israel would not exist.

Blogger Sicilian Switchblade March 23, 2020 10:50 AM  

•Hoarding: Previously known as "saving"

•Debt: Previously known as "indentured servitude."

Blogger Silly but True March 23, 2020 1:53 PM  

“It is not the end. Or even the beginning of the end. It is the end of the beginning.”

Blogger Max March 23, 2020 3:34 PM  

There's no way of knowing exactly how lethal it is, but probably less than 1% fatality so long as hospitals are functional. Makes sense to take precautions, but I think that the US at least is overeacting to tank the economy.

Blogger Up from the pond March 23, 2020 4:05 PM  

Which is why UBI would be the most efficient allocation of government money. The money would be spent by individuals according to their own personal economic calculations, not by The Government picking winners and losers. Thus it would end up in the hands of those who earned the business, not Jaime Dimon. I wonder if we will hear any libertarian Joooos saying that.

Blogger SirHamster March 23, 2020 6:19 PM  

Oswald wrote:He to a certain extent and I dare say all end times preachers are false prophets. That may be harsh, but if what they say does not come true are they not false? Would not my Dad, Uncles, Aunts, Grandparents, and Cousins been better served by a different message before they died. Were they living in the end times?
The turkey preaching the slaughter to the flock looks like a kook right until he's right, one Thanksgiving.

False prophets are the ones who say things that are provably false. There is a way to predict the end that is not false.

On the receiving end, treating each day like your last may be wrong 99.99% of the time, but it is a powerful and effective approach to life.

Blogger JamesB.BKK March 23, 2020 10:23 PM  

UBI + personal economic calculations = more chips and beer at ever increasing prices / decreasing unit size / volume while I think about muh poetry and first novel.

UBI will make most recipients into farm animals, milked for votes, as currently happens with EBT, and earners into beasts of burden pulling ever increasing dead weight, while govt administrators and vote traders keep getting high dollar donations, speech fees, book deals for books nobody reads, private jet passage, and 501(c)(3) foundations structured to have them live as royalty. Supporters are being played just like welfare queens in multigenerational loservilles were played. One does not have to be an insightful jooo to see it. Time to get busy.

Blogger Door in the Hill March 24, 2020 3:43 AM  

If they really want UBI, make it a plot of land sufficient to subsistence farm on, and a couple hundred dollars a month stipend for supplies. Also, something in between Briton and US for taxes. No land taxes on on plot of land enough to farm for a family and supply heating needs. Buildings (probably again with an exemption for the first so much), and only taxed thereafter.

The land should be in perpetual ownership within the family. Not sure how/whether and to what degree to permit selling. Probably some provision, but limited.

Of course, keeping the government to the monetary limit is probably impossible. City folk can get the same basic stipend, which would probably be just enough to feed a frugal person, but would probably have to work to afford rent.

Blogger Up from the pond March 24, 2020 8:58 AM  

Why don't you believe in markets?

Blogger Akulkis March 24, 2020 9:09 PM  

"The 30-year mortgage gained prominence back in the early 1980s, shortly after mortgage-backed securities were created. But I'm sure it had nothing to do with greed and everything to do with giving poor people homes they couldn't afford and had no business buying to begin with."

Very true. A lot of people were moving into much larger homes than what they had moved from. It was easy to tell -- because their houses had far less furniture than what would be appropriate -- which means they lacked enough spare cash to go out and buy a few pieces of furniture to, say, have a couch in both the living room and the family room.

Blogger Door in the Hill March 25, 2020 6:36 AM  

Up from the pond: I believe in markets quite well. I was looking more towards how to ensure people don't lose what they have, if it's going to come under some kind of UBI type deal.

Thinking again, putting the restriction on how many such plots someone may acquire might be a better way to handle the situation and prevent the bankers or other wealthy from trying to seize control of everything.

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