There was an opinion stated on the TBP in the last day or two about “Money being the root of all evil.” and all that crap. Here are a few musings on the matter.
Actually, money is a very useful invention and lies at the base of our “barely is” and “slowly shrinking” prosperity. The bad part is the human tendency to foul its’ own nest, which we are doing in so many and varied ways from printing fiat money and spending it first (that’s the 1st Rule of Government – spend it first!) to polluting any and everything we touch with oil, waste heat products, feces, fertilizer and plastic crap to using up antique aquifer water (a few hundred million years old) so fast that within the lifetimes of our great grand children, farmers’ wells in the corn and wheat belts will be dry, dry, dry. Maybe whatever the “money” is then will be sufficient to pipe in water from Canada. Or perhaps things will be warm enough by then to do the farming in Canada, who knows..
The human animal is just a remarkably shrewd, not very smart, upright ape with very selfish tendencies. Of course, there are exceptions to the “not so smart” but, in all, as a race, our IQ’s have been dropping for 4,000 years. This produces an entire world wide population of beings who, in general, only think of today – maybe tonight as well – especially if sex is involved — but absolutely no farther. The short term, instant gratification mode is glaringly present in all aspects of human behavior from shoplifting to politics to excessive extraction of natural resources.
That’s why “kick the can” is universally preferred to really fixing anything when it’s gone wrong.
Paint over it, move it over, rearrange the chairs, weld that broken strut (poorly), just fill it with putty and so on and so on.
But “money” is not the cause of all this present and coming agony. We are the cause of it. Now how is that?
The 2012 elections should have plainly written in the sky in all CAPS for everyone to see that cares to look up from their video game is that some 200 years ago a thrifty Scottish fellow by the name of Alexander Fraser Tytler, had a startling insight into the nature of short term human thinking, so well proved out today. Right now, in fact.. It goes as follows:
“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.”
I’m not so sure about the “monarchy” conclusion reached at the end – but a dictatorship or fascist form of government is obviously the most likely as civil order finally implodes when the Free Shit stops — as it mathematically must at some point when lack of resources, technology and productivity fail to keep us even with the “Take from the productive and give to the non-productive” proclivity that exists in broad reaches of the world today – especially in the USA and the EU.
Another fellow – a bit later in time – Alexis de Tocqueville by name, had a slightly different view of corruption via political pollution of money:
“The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the publics’ money”.
And then we have Will Rodgers who summed it all up, “A fool and his money are soon elected.”
Ending with Margaret Thatcher, “The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money [to spend].”
Put them all together and you have been provided sufficient foresight into the simple fact that money is not the root of all evil but that man is all root, trunk and branch; through his actions, the functions of money are distorted and once distortion (i.e. fiat inflation of any ilk) has gained a foothold, eventual debasement and collapse of the fiat money are inevitable.
Please remember: unbacked credit and money created out of thin air are exactly the same thing and the collapse of the debt it “finances” which will happen simply depends on the confidence of those people, wherever and whomever they are, who accept the fiat money/credit in exchange for real property, goods and services.
When the people and producers, in their inimitable fashion, lose confidence in the fiat credit/money to purchase real goods and services in an orderly fashion, the immediate response is to try and find something else to use for money – in a black market..
Gresham’s Law (well proven) states, “Bad money drives out good money.” and makes the good money vanish from view into the black market where some great bargains can be had. But you must be careful the Government doesn’t catch you because by then, the Government has installed draconian currency controls, confiscatory taxes and other robber baron methods to fleece businesses, the sheeple and outlaw anything but their own fiat garbage as a medium of exchange!.. You take their worthless money at the point of a gun or be mightily punished for not doing so. Be advised that this is the true path into penury and has happened throughout history time and time again.
History is exceptionally cruel in this respect in that when debasement of money, fiat and unbacked “fantasy credit” is issued that will never be repaid begins to happen, there is no historical incidence or record of it ever ending except in disaster. NEVER.
It always collapses just like any other Ponzi scheme, even when done on a worldwide multinational basis. We are watching the twisting and turning of Central Banks and Governments world wide trying frantically to get out of debt by going deeper into debt, papering over default by selling themselves bonds they printed themselves and all other varieties of kinky fiscal idiocy that will eventually blow away in the wind, leaving all concerned dead and dying at the end of the rope they strung for themselves to hang by.
This fiscal exercise in futility is then followed by a general lowering of living standards, a die off of significant proportions and, in a burst of glory, the fabled Man on The White Horse barges in (with his loyal troops) to the “rescue” and we all find ourselves living under martial law at a much, much lower living standard and with a Military fascist promising to liberate us from our own folly. Same old, same old. This has played out time after time down the tortuous trail of history and our situation will be no different this time either.
The bitch is in the timing. My comment on a thread elsewhere about it being a long and agonizing scream of misery followed by a “Bang” applies.
In the l-o-n-g run, if anyone is interested in it, we are totally screwed as a race – humanity that is, not some subset of it – and money has nothing to do with it. We, however, are smarter than the dinosaurs and other “less intelligent” species that have vanished before us through accident, cosmic indifference or climate change. We are currently engineering our own extinction ourselves which will have the exact same effect as enjoyed by all those species preceding us to extinction. We, in our particularly twisted ways, are hurrying other lesser species to extinction every day as we continue to rape and pillage various environments for greater “economic” glory.
Think about this: 98% of all documented species that ever dwelled on the planet are now extinct. What makes anyone think we’re “too special” to trot right along after the other 98%, especially since we are destroying our own ecosystem?
There isn’t a chance in Hell that the human race, in all its’ glory, varied self-centered goals, wants and perceived “needs” will be willing as a world wide group to agree on anything, much less coordinated action to prevent or mitigate what is roaring down the pike toward us all. Which is a planet 2-6 degrees Celsius hotter than today with all the misery that will cause from draughts, extreme hurricanes, violent monsoons and a huge rise in ocean levels that will flood a billion people from their homes and cities. But that’s day after tomorrow and of no interest to the teeming masses of sheeple that cannot even understand it, much less bring any pressure on ruling bodies to arrest the trend..
But “money” is not to be blamed for any of it.
Our own distortion, misuse, over use and stupid use of so many things in Nature, both the human sort and that belonging to Mother’s Nature is to blame for every bit of it and as Pogo said, “We have found the enemy and he is us!”.