This past week the stock market has soared like an eagle and dived like a turkey. As a result, even more “experts” are sticking out their necks and predicting a crash in the near future. What remains puzzling is the fact that so few of the experts realize that there is an alternative to the wild swings that characterize the modern business cycle: Capital Homesteading and the Just Third Way. Maybe some real people are starting to catch on, however, which would explain the popularity of some of our recent articles, a few of which are getting worldwide attention:
Friday, July 31, 2015
Thursday, July 30, 2015
Go to college, get good grades, graduate, get a good job. That’s been the “Middle Class Mantra” for more than half a century. The rising cost of education, grade inflation, low graduation rates, and lack of employment opportunities are, consequently, blamed for the decline of the “Middle Class.” As a result, there are increasing demands that “the government do something.”
Wednesday, July 29, 2015
“It’s my money! I paid it in! I own it!” That is the response almost any time you bring up the subject of Social Security and the projected deficit — now amounting to around $41 trillion and change (down from a few years ago when they changed accounting assumptions — don’t you wish you could reduce debt the same way?), according to the “real time” National Debt Clock at http://usdebtclock.org/. When you add in the total projections for unfunded federal government liabilities, you’re starting to push up against $100 trillion.
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
What with low interest rates, the volatility of the stock market, the shrinking “jobs market,” the projected Social Security deficit, and a few other things, significant numbers of people are concerned about their retirement portfolios . . . if they even have one. Typically, wage earners are told to save X% of each paycheck in order to fund retirement.
Monday, July 27, 2015
A while back, say, a century or so, Judge Peter S. Grosscup of the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals published an article with the title, “Who Shall Own America?” (American Illustrated Magazine, December 1905). A few weeks ago the “Mensa Weekly Brainwave” sent around a link to an article in the MIT Technology Review, “Who Will Own the Robots?”.
Friday, July 24, 2015
As of this writing the Dow is down another 125 points or so. Don’t worry, though. Primarily, of course, despite what “the experts” would have you believe, the stock market is not the sector where primary activity takes place. That’s why it’s called “the secondary market.” In a rational world, the primary market affects the stock market, not the other way around.
Thursday, July 23, 2015
We got some comments a week or so ago when we started the just-finished series on the Greek debt crisis. While no doubt well-intentioned, however, the comments were based on misconceptions about money, credit, banking, and finance, as well as the facts of history, that made it impossible to respond. Still, we tried.
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Yesterday we noted that there is one key factor that cannot be omitted from the proposed program to put Greece on an even keel economically. Regular readers of this blog already know what this is: an aggressive program of expanded capital ownership. Why?
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
Yesterday we saw how the United States implemented a plan to replace its various debt-backed currencies (United States Notes, National Bank Notes, and the Treasury Notes of 1890) with debt-backed Federal Reserve Bank Notes, and replace the debt-backed Federal Reserve Bank Notes with asset-backed Federal Reserve Notes.
Monday, July 20, 2015
Last Thursday, as a build up to explaining how to straighten out the Greek debt crisis, we looked at the problem the United States had in the 19th century with its basket of debt-, semi-debt-, and asset-backed currencies. This confused financial system was in part responsible for the Panics of 1873 and 1893, and the resulting Great Depressions of 1873-1878 and 1893-1898, respectively, and wholly responsible for the Panic of 1907, “The Bankers’ Panic.”
Friday, July 17, 2015
Germany is being painted as the villain in the (alleged) solution to the Greek debt crisis. Germany (and Germans) are, as we might expect, being portrayed as Nazi stormtroopers and concentration camp guards (how original) for wanting Greece to pay its debts (gasp!), or at least promise to do so (how rude!) — and, yes, the swastika has put in an appearance. Most people, however, seem to be missing a few salient facts. That is, besides the fact that people or countries shouldn't make promises (i.e., go into debt) that they have no intention of keeping.
Thursday, July 16, 2015
Yesterday we looked at how Hjalmar Schacht, the “Old Wizard” with the unlikely middle name of “Horace Greeley” (no, really — he was born in New York City while his parents briefly lived there), stabilized the German currency in the 1920s, putting an end to the hyperinflation that followed World War I. Of course, on the downside, this laid the foundation of the German resurgence that in less than a decade took the country from absolute zero to nearly conquering the world, but that’s a different issue. The point to keep in mind is that it is possible to turn even a complete economic basket case completely around in less than a decade.
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
If we believe the reaction on the U.S. stock market, the financial powers-that-be are jubilant about the alleged solution to the Greek debt crisis. Of course, once people realize that there hasn’t actually been a solution implemented, only talk about one (and it might not even work . . . make that, we know it won’t work), we can expect yet another wild plunge in the market.
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Making every child, woman, and man productive is key to solving the Greek — or any other — debt crisis. Figuring out how to make everybody productive, or at least providing the opportunity and means whereby they can become productive is quite another. (We say “opportunity,” for everyone should be free to decide not to be productive, assuming that no one else is compelled to support anyone who freely chooses not to be productive.)
Monday, July 13, 2015
We’ve now established (at least to our satisfaction) that the way for Greece to get out from under its burden of debt is to become productive — and to do that in a way that enables every single child, woman, and man to become a producer of marketable goods and services in amounts sufficient to repay old debt, meet current consumption needs, and build up a moderate store against a rainy day.
Friday, July 10, 2015
Remember the (alleged) “Chinese curse” — “May you live in interesting times”? We’re not going to try and do the research to find out if anyone from China ever cursed somebody else in that manner, but it certainly seems to be true in essence . . . as you can see from this week’s news items:
Thursday, July 9, 2015
So now we have the solution to the Greek (or any other) debt crisis: if you want to pay down debt, have enough to meet your current consumption needs, and set aside enough for a rainy day, you have to produce enough to cover what you have consumed on tick (i.e., on credit), are consuming on a daily basis, and a store on which to draw if you suddenly become unable to produce.
Wednesday, July 8, 2015
What is the sound of one hand clapping? How can you consume when you don’t produce? Well, as we noted yesterday, you can’t. Not unless you seize control of the language so that you can make words mean what you want them to mean.
Tuesday, July 7, 2015
Absent a rich uncle conveniently dying or a fairy godmother waving a magic wand to grant three wishes (neither of which, for various reasons, is something we should count on), there is only way to get out of debt: produce enough to cover your current consumption needs, make up for what you consumed in the past that you didn’t produce, and put something aside for a rainy day . . . which means a year’s worth of income to cover yourself because rain spoiled the annual harvest.
Monday, July 6, 2015
Last Thursday we said there is a viable solution to the Greek debt crisis, and it isn’t austerity. What we didn’t say was that the solution is either simple or easy. It is, in fact, pretty harsh if you’re a politician, government worker, or anyone receiving government benefits, especially in the beginning, and probably for three to five years until the program kicks into high gear and starts generating significant income in and of itself.
Friday, July 3, 2015
What on earth are you supposed to report on when the world ends, i.e., the stock market is closed, and won’t reopen until Monday? And that is after the vote in Greece. Still, there are a few items that appear to be noteworthy:
Thursday, July 2, 2015
It’s déjà vu all over again. We may have mentioned once or a dozen times the last time the problem was “solved” that it wasn’t actually solved, just swept under the rug until it grew big enough to crawl out again and this time eat the entire house. For starters. Then move on to the rest of the European Union for the main course. We’re not even going to speculate what’s for dessert, at least openly, but if a tasty little morsel like Switzerland thinks it can stay out of it when the rest of Europe is crashing and burning, it might have another think coming.
Wednesday, July 1, 2015
Yesterday we saw that, despite his sincere faith that his theory of tidal motion proved heliocentricism, Galileo’s proof was seriously flawed. Heliocentric theory was not, in fact, actually proved until the nineteenth century — regardless of the fact that many people accepted it for centuries before that . . . on faith, not because it was proved.