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I've been trying to condense the argument for why we need more money circulating, not less. This is my latest iteration.

The alternative to debt is theft. And every dollar is, in fact, a certified IOU. While it is obviously possible to incur debts without dollars, just as it is possible to enter a marriage without a certificate, since we incur debts with many more people, the certificates/tokens/memoranda make our obligations easier to remember and we can even pass them around. A civilized culture, one which does not rely on predatory theft, needs money (which we invented about 5000 years ago) and, as the network of relationships increases, it needs more. Putting artificial restrictions on how much money there is in circulation, whether by official rationing or private hoarding, is, when you come right down to it, anti-social behavior.

Why the Republican party in the U.S. has become anti-social is anybody's guess. Perhaps crooks are like birds of a feather and, ever since Nixon, they've been flocking to the banner of the 'rex.' The culture of obedience relies on "doing what the boss wants" to get away with mischief and worse.

Leadership, it would seem, is like ownership. Not up to good.

Leadership and ownership and citizenship -- each represents an obligatory relationship. Are they mutually excluding? If so, then to be civilized we must eschew leaders.

Eschew--what a lovely word! It means shun. But, look at it. Literally, it says to chew and spit out; the opposite of chow down.

Republicans bearing austerity must be eschewed.

P.S. Why does the circulation rate of money keep dropping?
Because of rationing and hoarding.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Souls are for saving; money for spending. (10+ / 0-)

    We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 11:41:25 PM PST

  •  Slight embellishment: (4+ / 0-)
    Republicans, and Democrats, bearing austerity must be eschewed.
    We don't need Dems helping the Republicans in this regard, either.

    Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
    ~ Jerry Garcia

    by DeadHead on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 12:46:47 AM PST

  •  After the holiday buying orgy, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the stores were still full. Except for a few specialty items like the Nexus 4 phone, I didn't notice any shortages of any product.

    The only shortage was of money. Print more or liberate it from the hoarders. I don't see what's so hard about this.

    Except that "we've" decided that a large percentage of the population doesn't deserve any more money.

    It's inane.

    We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance.

    by PowWowPollock on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 03:17:39 AM PST

    •  I suspect that rationing is akin to censorship (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      in the public servant's mind. Always a temptation that must be resisted.
      Then too, merchants seem to have a penchant for short-changing or putting a thumb on the scale. They diddle insignificant amounts, as if it's just the diddle that counts -- putting something over on someone.
      It's sort of perverse. Rich people get charged less; poor people get charged more. Putting over.

      We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

      by hannah on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 05:45:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Austerity and Deflation go hand-in-hand. /nt (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, 3goldens

      Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
      I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
      —Spike Milligan

      by polecat on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 08:02:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Since you mentioned nutshells . . . (5+ / 0-)

    There is something intrinsic about the value of money that many simply don't get, which I always try to demonstrate with the help of my old friend Aesop:

    Today's Fable for Our Times is

    A Miser had a large store of gold which he buried at the base of an old oak tree. Once a week he visited the tree, dug up his store and let the coins run through his fingers. When he was through gloating over his fortune, he reburied it . His neighbor noticed the miser left once a week and followed him and saw the hidden cache of gold, which he promptly stole.

    The next week when the Miser returned to the tree, he saw the hole and that his gold was gone. He wept and screamed and tore at his hair. An old woman heard the commotion and came to investigate and the Miser told her of his loss. "There, there," she said "put this handful of acorns in your hole and visit them weekly. They'll do you the same good your buried gold did."

    Moral - Wealth gets it value from it's use, not it's possession

    I expounded on this a bit here:

    Money or Acorns

    But the concept is very simple - money hoarded or unused or in too few hands is money wasted.

    A while ago I heard Katrina Vandenhuevel say something on TV that I advise everyone to trot out when the discussion turns to the Robber Baron Masters of the Universe for whom no greed is too great to aspire to - these men and women who rob their employees and their shareholders and the world at large in order to sit atop the Diamond as Big as the Ritz -

    "The only true Job Creators are Consumers."

    Now think about that. Workers need to be paid enough money in order to have disposable income in order TO SPEND IT. When they buy cars and houses and furniture and food and shoes and even crap like scented candles and crocheted toilet paper covers - they CREATE JOBS. Which creates more money which creates more demands which creates more jobs, etc.

    If TARP had given every American citizen an equal share of the money that was paid to the banks to save their asses instead of shutting them down, putting them into receivership and jailing their executives, that money would have gone right back into the economy and we would have a healthier economy and a sounder financial system based on the Rule of Law and sound financial and accounting principles. But we chose instead to pour the collective dollars of the country down a rathole to bail out immoral and unethical corrupt industries and their captains. And we continue to do it. And we continue to try to find ways to TAKE MONEY OUT OF THE SYSTEM because that is what these completely insane and stupid and idiotic austerity monegers and deficits hawks see as THE CURE!!!!


    OMG, is it too early for a cocktail? Is the sun setting somewhere right now in the former British Empire?

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 05:49:42 AM PST

    •  I don't think it is quite so simple. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      After all, we dole out dollars to our elders directly on a monthly basis and still the dollars get siphoned off by the banksters and speculators and hoarded.
      I'm tempted to think that, if they were persuaded the dollars are useless, they'd stop hoarding. But, that is by no means certain. Hoarding is obsessive behavior and requires an intervention. The 2008 crash supposedly caused $40 trillion to evaporate without causing a significant ripple at the top. If anything the hoarding seems to have gotten worse. Perhaps it is actually a logical response to the rationing Congress is constantly trying to impose. And that, by the way, is a Democratic flaw. It was Clinton/Gore who tried to one-up the Republicans by proving they could spend less, as if frugality were a virtue.
      See Aesop's fable of the Fox and the Crow.

      We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

      by hannah on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 06:16:10 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  There is no shortage of "money" . . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hannah, a2nite

      the "medium of exchange", that is.  There is only inequitable distribution of accumulated wealth.

      When we conflate the two (money and wealth) and allow the inequity to continue and expand we get the present situation . . . where most of the "money", and most of the resulting accumulation of "stuff" as well, is in the hands (accounts) of the few.

      We have made it all orders of magnitude worse by allowing "money" to "make money" without doing anything productive in the process.  All that does (for society) is guarantee that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer . . .

      Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

      by Deward Hastings on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 07:09:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  They were like this prior to the Depression, too. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hannah, 3goldens

    And you've missed the generations-long battle to undo the New Deal.

    The "Hard Currency" (Gold & Silver standard) folks are big time austerity-fetishists.  It prevents the currency from expanding because the materials are relatively rare, and deflation (yes DEFLATION) is good for rich people.  Not for anyone else, but good for rich people because it makes their money that much more valuable.  It also makes labor cheaper.

    In a CONSUMER economy this is bad, but in a feudalistic society, it's great if you're an aristocrat (or aristo-wannabe).

    So where do you think the "Screw you, I've got mine!" attitude fits in? (I'll give you one guess.)

    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
    —Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 08:01:56 AM PST

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