UXO is a hell of a thing.
And the last Revolutionary War veteran died in 1866. (The year after our Civil War ended, in case you don't know much American history.)
I don't know if there's a more recent example of Civil War UXO causing injuries, but here's a news article about a man killed in February 2008: http://www.foxnews.com/story/2008/05/02/virginia-man-killed-...
As a result, even up to the mid-1990s, when I was there, it was not unusual to see a block or two closed off periodically because someone digging had found unexploded ordnance there. And due to the chemical weapons work, these discoveries were more disconcerting than usual, because who knew if it was just a standard high-explosive shell or something loaded with mustard gas, or worse?
Or that the scale of the war can be appraised form its cost to society, just as a matter of perspective.
The reality it seems, is much more mundane, as you point out. That suggestion though, is what maybe the piece is suggesting by its headline. That kind of controversial commentary is why I'd clicked on it to begin with, but if I'd known that it was just being literal about the topic, it wouldn't be nearly as appealing.
Still, it's kind of crazy that these old debts are still lingering around. Just in a broader, historical sense.
My children have dual nationality. Let's apportion your Nazi blame on them shall we?
Attitudes like yours solve nothing.
Unless you want to go the collective guilt or blood guilt route.
But even then, Austro-Hungary was an empire before WW1 and was left in more or less its current borders afterwards (like 1/10th of what it was before? I'm guessing here, but I remember it was a huge difference on the maps). I'd say that's enough of a reparations for any state.
Inflation is basically a tax on savings, which is not that bad when you consider again that money has no value. A low inflation rate then creates subtle pressure for people to invest money productively (or just spend it) as they lose out if they just hide it under their mattress. A high inflationary rate is not good, of course, as you basically can't save at all, while deflation is also bad because it rewards saving and causes value to evaporate (since money has no intrinsic value, things produced have to be bought and used...).
I'm not sure you could find a single serious economist who would claim "slight inflation is bad;" i.e. would argue that 2-3% is worse than 0%. Maybe a libertarian, but there is a good reason we never vote them into power.
I'm not saying that it isn't a misguided theory - I'm far too ignorant to honestly argue macroeconomics - but I disagree with your representation of it as a settled argument, disputed only by cranks.
Inflation is a tax on savings, but that's alright because money has no value?! But if money actually had no value, there would be no use for it.
Consumption "has to" match production?! What's that supppsed to mean? If I produce something no one wants, people "have to" consume it anyway?
You say inflation is good because it motivates people to invest (because their money loses value just sitting in a bank), but why wouldn't people want to invest even if their money was gaining in value? The purchasing power of whatever money you earn through investments is increased by deflation too, so the sooner you make a good investment, the better off you'll be.
If you produce and no one buys, then you stop producing because you are providing no value; simple. If your production is non perishable, you could pay rent and upkeep to stockpile it, but value is lost regardless.
People have an incentive not to invest because investing is risky. Many would just sit on a gold hoard than to risk losing it, but that behavior doesn't solve any consumption problems (worse, it leads to temporary deflation, since that gold is taken out of circulation).
This isn't rocket sicence, most of us have college degrees, this is just Econ 101.
You seem to have misunderstood you Econ 101 classes because "supply" isn't the same thing as "production", "demand" isn't equivalent to "consumption", and "intrinsic value" is a completely artificial construct.
Also, people save mostly because they want to spend later, invest mostly because they want to have more money, and consume mostly because they want the wealth. Inflation and deflation have very complex and often non-intuitive relations with those three. You can't just extrapolate from Econ 101, not even after you understand it right.
Investments require taking on risk and...they actually require skills to do right (e.g. Doing your homework). So you might want to invest to get rich, but you might not want to invest because you aren't good at it or do t want to become poor. It still has to be incentivized, especially when most people just want comfortable lives.
You seem to have an agenda in introducing more relationshios above this one simple fact. So make your point rather than just claiming my ignorance, because no points were argued in your post.
What's that supposed to mean?
How does consumption "have to" match production? How do you figure "money has no value"? Now you're talking about "intrinsic value" but earlier it was just plain "value".
People save money for a reason you know. If money has no value, as you originally claimed, then there's no reason to save or possess it. If money has no "intrinsic value" that doesn't make your original claim any less confused.
But to be precise, value is purely subjective. We've been using the word somewhat ambiguously. Value is utility as a means towards an end. Money, as a medium of exchange, has utility as a means towards countless ends, and that's exactly why everyone wants it.
You say people have a disincentive to invest because it's risky, but I don't see a point there. It all depends on the investment opportunity, and the investor's tolerance to risk etc, ie. the circumstances. Some people do invest, some don't. So what?
You say that not investing doesn't "solve any consumption problems", but what the hell might those be? Again, why does consumption "have to" match production? What does that mean? What's a "consumption problem" and whose problem is it, and why?
Why is (price-)deflation a problem, considering it means our purchasing power is increasing? Do you really want to claim people want less stuff for their money?
Don't pretend you're giving me an economics lesson.
Some of us actually have advanced degrees in Economics, so let's not act like you're Krugman himself.
You go out of business and stop producing.
How does that make sense, considering no one has even eaten (=consumed) one?
But that's just closing a minor loophole. People do not often intentionally produce market products with no intent to sell, and it'll make them run out of money. The overall rule is pretty solid even if you don't close the minor loophole.
Yeah, they run out of money. The rest is a rounding error.
>I could be on a sacred mission to provide everyone in the world with a shit-sandwich
You're not a producer in the market sense then. Consumption is a market term, it doesn't mean anyone has to eat the sandwich.
To put it simply: The original statement was "consumption has to match production with very few exceptions". Zealotry outside of markets is one of those few exceptions; it's very rare. Otherwise market forces compel them to match.
IMO you need a cycle of inflation between 2-7% to keep things healthy. Dollars stockpiled in some account are not doing anyone any good.
Why is it that Keynesians believe that money just gets stuffed under a mattress or stockpiled somewhere? It is loaned out at X% interest rates to people who need present-day liquidity to fuel growth. What do you think the VC industry is based on, Keynesian economics?
VC investments are a completely different universe. None of the $7 trillion in deposit balance is going to a VC.
Right now, smaller businesses are starved of loan capital, and if you don't offer the high growth rates that VCs need to succeed, it is difficult to get loans.
> He also brilliantly demonstrates that the language of the ancient works of law and religion (words like “guilt,” “sin,” and “redemption”) derive in large part from ancient debates about debt, and shape even our most basic ideas of right and wrong.
Did he just rewrite Nietzsche's "Genealogy of Morals"?
"Economists hate war because it's the equivalent of taking your economy out the back and shooting it"
Looking it up, I think it was probably a british Consul. A type of perpetual bond. Which in the case, you have very little reason to redeem it.
I looked at buying some of the consols for my ISA last month - its one of the few ways of getting a safe investment that pays more than inflation.
France demanded that Haiti pay the modern equivalent of $21 billion in debt for the "loss of men and slave colony".
Most of Africa, Palestine/Israel, India/Pakistan/Bangladesh, etc.