Economics

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Economics

Post by infidel » Wed Sep 15, 2010 4:54 pm

Fascinating stuff, but then just about everything fascinates me at some level. Economics just happens to be near the top of the list. I am so lame.

http://mises.org/daily/4700

DL, this made me think of you in the Gold Standard thread:
Two major features of the [environment of evolutionary adaptedness] are of interest here. First, it was a zero-sum world. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors lived on whatever was provided by nature. There was effectively no economic progress — certainly not during a person's lifetime. One person's consumption came at the expense of everybody else's. With little specialization, production, or property, the scope of trade was minimal. Societies were basically small, egalitarian communes. Second, the EEA was characterized by reciprocal exchange, not market exchange. Reciprocal exchange is the receiving and returning of favors, e.g., sharing my kill with you on the understanding that you'll reciprocate in the future. Zero-sum thinking and the logic of reciprocal exchange form the core of our intuitive economics.
http://mises.org/daily/4707

Who knew Socrates was such a mooch?
Socrates felt that life's ideal goal lay in the search for "virtue," understood as disdain for material wealth, and specifically, entrepreneurial profit. Socrates seized every opportunity to boast of his poverty and to idealize the supposed virtues of the totalitarian state of Sparta, which at that time represented ideals opposed to those of Athens. In fact, in his defense speech, he outrages the jury by proclaiming that his services to the state of Athens were so many that instead of being tried, he should receive a life pension paid for by everyone (in the form of food financed by the city for the duration of his life!).
Or that the Taoists were the first great libertarian/anarchist thinkers?
Lastly, it is very interesting to note that, during the same era when classical Greek thought was being forged (from the 6th to the 4th century BC), ancient China saw the beginnings of three great currents of thought: that of the so-called "Legalists" (who supported the centralized state), that of the Confucianists (who tolerated it), and that of the Taoists, of a much more liberal bent and extremely interesting for historians of economic thought. Chuang Tzu (369–286 BC) goes as far as to say that "good order results spontaneously when things are let alone." In his criticism of the interventionism of rulers, he describes them as "robbers." Also, according to Rothbard, Chuang Tzu was the first anarchist thinker in history. In fact, Chuang Tzu wrote that the world "does simply not need governing; in fact it should not be governed at all."
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Post by Kerdy » Wed Sep 15, 2010 5:32 pm

You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
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Post by Zed » Wed Sep 15, 2010 5:35 pm

Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
YEAH COBS

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Post by TNLawPiper » Wed Sep 15, 2010 5:48 pm

I have a feeling that "great" modified "thinkers," as did "libertarian/anarchist." One can be a great thinker regardless of whether one's philosophy is perfect.

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Post by Cliff » Wed Sep 15, 2010 7:26 pm

Infidel, Thanks for the quotes and the teachings. I AM FASCINATED
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Post by Irish-Dane » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:12 pm

Zed wrote:
Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
:lol: :lol: :lol:

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Post by UncleBob » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:15 pm

Zed wrote:
Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
LOL!
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Post by Kerdy » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:20 pm

Zed wrote:
Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
I'm not talking politics. Just made an observation.
"Let it be understood that those who are not found living as He taught are not Christian- even though they profess with the lips the teaching of Christ." - Justin Martyr  ( c.160 )

“Moral principles do not depend on a majority vote. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong. Right is right, even if nobody is right.” - Venerable Servant of God, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

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Post by Irish-Dane » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:21 pm

Kerdy wrote:
Zed wrote:
Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
I'm not talking politics. Just made an observation.
And therein is what makes it funny.

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Post by Kerdy » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:24 pm

Irish-Dane wrote:
Kerdy wrote:
Zed wrote:
Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
I'm not talking politics. Just made an observation.
And therein is what makes it funny.
Um, ok.
"Let it be understood that those who are not found living as He taught are not Christian- even though they profess with the lips the teaching of Christ." - Justin Martyr  ( c.160 )

“Moral principles do not depend on a majority vote. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong. Right is right, even if nobody is right.” - Venerable Servant of God, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

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Post by Irish-Dane » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:25 pm

Kerdy wrote:
Irish-Dane wrote:
Kerdy wrote:
Zed wrote:
Kerdy wrote:You used "great" and "anarchist" in the same sentence.

Unless you meant it in the fashon along the lines of "great fool" or something similar.
having a hard time staying on that wagon arn't you?
I'm not talking politics. Just made an observation.
And therein is what makes it funny.
Um, ok.
Nevermind. <redacted_emoji>

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Post by infidel » Thu Sep 16, 2010 10:19 am

Cliff wrote:Infidel, Thanks for the quotes and the teachings. I AM FASCINATED
I'm glad someone found it interesting :-)

I thought the article on "folk economics" added some insight to the saying about how difficult it is for a "rich man" to get to heaven.
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Re: Economics

Post by DepartedLight » Thu Sep 16, 2010 10:29 am

infidel wrote:Who knew Socrates was such a mooch?
infidel wrote:Or that the Taoists were the first great libertarian/anarchist thinkers?
I did :wink:
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Post by venator260 » Thu Sep 16, 2010 10:42 am

With any luck I can keep the Folk Economics article around for the increasingly unlikely event that I ever get the opportunity to teach an econ course.

It explains many of the debates on economics that I've had. I'll interject by asking if they've ever had any formal economic education. The usual response, "No, but..."

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Re: Economics

Post by infidel » Thu Sep 16, 2010 10:48 am

DepartedLight wrote:
infidel wrote:Who knew Socrates was such a mooch?
infidel wrote:Or that the Taoists were the first great libertarian/anarchist thinkers?
I did :wink:
Yeah, but you failed the "zero sum" thing :-P
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Re: Economics

Post by DepartedLight » Thu Sep 16, 2010 11:32 am

infidel wrote:
DepartedLight wrote:
infidel wrote:Who knew Socrates was such a mooch?
infidel wrote:Or that the Taoists were the first great libertarian/anarchist thinkers?
I did :wink:
Yeah, but you failed the "zero sum" thing :-P
not one bit!

There is a limited amount of gold. If gold = available wealth, then there is a limited amount of wealth. Whenever wealth is limited, there are those that have and those that have not. Those that have have because those that have not have not. That is "zero sum balance."

Unlimited wealth = unlimited balance. Those that have have because they have worked for it, those that have not have not worked for it, generally speaking.
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Re: Economics

Post by infidel » Thu Sep 16, 2010 11:42 am

DepartedLight wrote:
infidel wrote:
DepartedLight wrote:
infidel wrote:Who knew Socrates was such a mooch?
infidel wrote:Or that the Taoists were the first great libertarian/anarchist thinkers?
I did :wink:
Yeah, but you failed the "zero sum" thing :-P
not one bit!

There is a limited amount of gold. If gold = available wealth, then there is a limited amount of wealth. Whenever wealth is limited, there are those that have and those that have not. Those that have have because those that have not have not. That is "zero sum balance."

Unlimited wealth = unlimited balance. Those that have have because they have worked for it, those that have not have not worked for it, generally speaking.
If gold were the only thing that existed then sure. But, the people who have the gold can't eat it, it's no good to them unless they can trade it for stuff they need. Land is not gold. Owning land is a good part of most people's "wealth".

There's no such thing as "unlimited wealth". Why do you think today's dollars are worth a small fraction of dollars a hundred years ago? We keep creating more out of thin air making each one worth less overall. If you had a million dollars in the bank a hundred years ago, what could you buy with it today vs. then? That should tell you something about what fiat money does to "wealth".
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Post by Cigarson » Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:44 pm

wealth=value
value at some point boils down to resources ie. land
x amount of gold can be traded for y amount of value
The value of the gold fluctuates in relation to the product for trade, supply/demand et cetera. It's not static.
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Post by infidel » Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:34 pm

Cigarson wrote:wealth=value
value at some point boils down to resources ie. land
x amount of gold can be traded for y amount of value
The value of the gold fluctuates in relation to the product for trade, supply/demand et cetera. It's not static.
There are different kinds of value, there is market value (i.e. "price" in terms of ounces of gold or "dollars" or whatever standard unit of measurement is in play) and there is personal or "use" value which is subjective. Something could have very low market value, thereby not contributing to one's objective "wealth", but have a great deal of subjective value anyways.
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Re: Economics

Post by infidel » Thu Nov 17, 2016 10:31 am

The Pressing Problem Nobody Dares Discuss
The list of pundits jostling for air time to add their two cents to discussions of hot-button issues such as immigration is endless. The airwaves and social media are overflowing with people wanting to comment on hot-button social issues, but when it comes to the the one truly critical dynamic that will shape the future--everyone's strangely silent.

The reason nobody dares address this problem is that it has no solution within the current mode of production, i.e. the status quo. The problem is an oversupply of labor.

One of the key takeaways from historian Peter Turchin's new book Ages of Discord is that real wages stagnate or decline in periods of labor oversupply and rise in periods of labor shortages.

This is common sense: the price/value of everything is ultimately set by the dynamics of supply and demand: the price/value of anything that is overly abundant drops. Or put another way: if demand is outstripped by supply, prices decline as long as there is surplus supply.
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