Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

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SteveFoerster
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by SteveFoerster » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:35 pm

cassowary wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:02 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:58 am
cassowary wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 3:42 am
There is a systemic problem in democracy that resulted in nearly all western democracies getting into debt.
That's more a consequence of fiat monetary policy than democracy.
In the current regime of fiat money democracies have proven incapable of fiscal discipline.

So, should we go back to the gold standard?
Not specifically. Getting government out of the money business and having a free market for the supply of it would be my approach. (Although I recognise that my position on that is very unusual.)
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neverfail
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by neverfail » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:56 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:35 pm
cassowary wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:02 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:58 am
cassowary wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 3:42 am
There is a systemic problem in democracy that resulted in nearly all western democracies getting into debt.
That's more a consequence of fiat monetary policy than democracy.
In the current regime of fiat money democracies have proven incapable of fiscal discipline.

So, should we go back to the gold standard?
Not specifically. Getting government out of the money business and having a free market for the supply of it would be my approach. (Although I recognise that my position on that is very unusual.)
Yes, both of your positions are quite reactionary!

They have tried out both in the past and found them wanting. In the 19th century banks were permitted to print their own banknotes which invited swindles and runs on the banks when these lacked enough reserves of gold and silver specie to allow customers to redeem their printed IOU's.

As for the gold standard; far too inflexible given the volume and speed of business being done today.

Given the low inflation and bank rates prevailing today I fail to see the need for a gold based currency.

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SteveFoerster
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by SteveFoerster » Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:14 pm

neverfail wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:56 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:35 pm
cassowary wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:02 pm
So, should we go back to the gold standard?
Not specifically. Getting government out of the money business and having a free market for the supply of it would be my approach. (Although I recognise that my position on that is very unusual.)
Yes, both of your positions are quite reactionary!
More radical than reactionary, but whatever.
They have tried out both in the past and found them wanting. In the 19th century banks were permitted to print their own banknotes which invited swindles and runs on the banks when these lacked enough reserves of gold and silver specie to allow customers to redeem their printed IOU's.
As opposed to the government-issued fiat notes in the 20th and 21st centuries, which worked flawlessly?
As for the gold standard; far too inflexible given the volume and speed of business being done today.
There's no need for an imposed standard at all.
Given the low inflation and bank rates prevailing today I fail to see the need for a gold based currency.
Even the mighty U.S. dollar has lost 97% of its purchasing power in the last century. And all of that is a hidden tax. You may not see that as a drawback, but some of us do.
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Jim the Moron
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by Jim the Moron » Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:47 am

The "Orwell of the Orient."

http://www.newmandala.org/gopal-baratham-orwell-orient/

cass is no doubt familiar with "A Candle or the Sun." I'm going to look for it; this discussion has piqued my interest. We are advised that the folks in the novel are willing to sacrifice freedom for "good housing, safe streets, schools for your children and three square meals a day and a colour TV."

neverfail
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by neverfail » Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:15 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:14 pm

Even the mighty U.S. dollar has lost 97% of its purchasing power in the last century. And all of that is a hidden tax. You may not see that as a drawback, but some of us do.
Do you believe that it is any different elsewhere in the world, Steve? Who cares?

How do average real incomes compare today to how they were a century ago? That surely is what counts - not whether a pound of flour cost only 5 cents in 1917 but costs a dollar plus today.

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cassowary
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by cassowary » Sat Dec 23, 2017 5:13 pm

Jim the Moron wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:47 am
The "Orwell of the Orient."

http://www.newmandala.org/gopal-baratham-orwell-orient/

cass is no doubt familiar with "A Candle or the Sun." I'm going to look for it; this discussion has piqued my interest. We are advised that the folks in the novel are willing to sacrifice freedom for "good housing, safe streets, schools for your children and three square meals a day and a colour TV."
I never heard of "a candle or the Sun" till now.

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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by SteveFoerster » Sat Dec 23, 2017 6:39 pm

neverfail wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:15 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:14 pm

Even the mighty U.S. dollar has lost 97% of its purchasing power in the last century. And all of that is a hidden tax. You may not see that as a drawback, but some of us do.
Do you believe that it is any different elsewhere in the world, Steve? Who cares?

How do average real incomes compare today to how they were a century ago? That surely is what counts - not whether a pound of flour cost only 5 cents in 1917 but costs a dollar plus today.
Relative prices is not why that's important. The absorption by the state of a hidden wealth tax of 97% is, however slowly collected.
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neverfail
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by neverfail » Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:49 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 6:39 pm
neverfail wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:15 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:14 pm

Even the mighty U.S. dollar has lost 97% of its purchasing power in the last century. And all of that is a hidden tax. You may not see that as a drawback, but some of us do.
Do you believe that it is any different elsewhere in the world, Steve? Who cares?

How do average real incomes compare today to how they were a century ago? That surely is what counts - not whether a pound of flour cost only 5 cents in 1917 but costs a dollar plus today.
Relative prices is not why that's important. The absorption by the state of a hidden wealth tax of 97% is, however slowly collected.
That reads like some absurd sort of conspiracy theory to me Styeve.

Could you elaborate?

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SteveFoerster
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by SteveFoerster » Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:39 pm

neverfail wrote:
Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:49 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 6:39 pm
neverfail wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:15 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:14 pm

Even the mighty U.S. dollar has lost 97% of its purchasing power in the last century. And all of that is a hidden tax. You may not see that as a drawback, but some of us do.
Do you believe that it is any different elsewhere in the world, Steve? Who cares?

How do average real incomes compare today to how they were a century ago? That surely is what counts - not whether a pound of flour cost only 5 cents in 1917 but costs a dollar plus today.
Relative prices is not why that's important. The absorption by the state of a hidden wealth tax of 97% is, however slowly collected.
That reads like some absurd sort of conspiracy theory to me Styeve.

Could you elaborate?
Every year the currency is inflated a little, developed economies usually target 2%, but the amount varies. In other words, they run the printing presses and print more money. When that happens, more dollars (or euros, pounds, whatever) are chasing the same goods and services, which soon causes prices to rise accordingly. The people who held dollars before had some of their purchasing power transferred to the holders of the newly printed dollars (typically pensioners, government employees, military contractors, etc.). In that way, it's a hidden tax on all dollar-denominated wealth.

Thing is, it doesn't just happen once, it happens every year, and the effects are cumulative. And in the last century since the Federal Reserve was founded, the U.S. dollar has lost about 97% of its purchasing power to currency inflation. That's not a "conspiracy theory", it's just math.
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neverfail
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Re: Singapore establishment feels threatened by the exercise of democratic rights.

Post by neverfail » Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:35 am

SteveFoerster wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:14 pm
neverfail wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:15 pm



That reads like some absurd sort of conspiracy theory to me Styeve.

Could you elaborate?
Every year the currency is inflated a little, developed economies usually target 2%, but the amount varies. In other words, they run the printing presses and print more money. When that happens, more dollars (or euros, pounds, whatever) are chasing the same goods and services, which soon causes prices to rise accordingly. The people who held dollars before had some of their purchasing power transferred to the holders of the newly printed dollars (typically pensioners, government employees, military contractors, etc.). In that way, it's a hidden tax on all dollar-denominated wealth.

Thing is, it doesn't just happen once, it happens every year, and the effects are cumulative. And in the last century since the Federal Reserve was founded, the U.S. dollar has lost about 97% of its purchasing power to currency inflation. That's not a "conspiracy theory", it's just math.
Steve, I am not saying that you are wrong: but I AM saying that I still remain unconvinced.

1. The inflation rate has not been steady during my lifetime by any means. I recall the period from 1973 into the 1980's when we, like much of the rest of the World, suffered double-digit rates of inflation. That happened not because governments around the world suddenly ran the printing presses faster but in a scenario of tight global supply the OPEC oil exporting countries cartel was able to double the price of crude in 1973 and, using the same leverage, raised the price again and again in the following years. It meant that anything produced with an oil component in it (there is hardly anything traded that does not have this in some way) went up in price to allow producers to recover the cost.

Based upon my country's fiscal policy of the time there is no reason why Australia's inflation rate should have risen into the teens. Furthermore, we were then 95% self-sufficient in crude oil from domestic production and our government kept the local wellhead price pegged at the old pre-1973 price to keep local motorists and other consumers happy. But inflation still crept into this country like a virus into the national bloodstream from abroad. The source was our foreign trading partners.

Japan was by far the biggest of these. Unlike ourselves Japan had/has no domestic oil production to speak of so this country had to bear the brunt of the OPEC price rises. It meant that every time Japan exported its motor vehicles or colour TV sets to Australia the prices kept on going up: so the Australian retailers had to jack up their prices to local buyers to recover their costs. And so on!

I recall this period as a time of scandalous industrial strife. Unionised workers (it really paid to belong to a trade union in those days) routinely went on strike for higher pay in order to prevent their members' living standards and those of their family from being degraded. So as well as cost "pull" inflation we also had wages "push" inflation and one fed the other in an apparently unbreakable spiral for years.

The USA suffered from similarly high rates of inflation as Australia over this period until 1982 (I paid 2 successive visits over these years and saw the effects with my own eyes); probably for the same reason as we. Despite the fact that the USA was (and still is not) anywhere near as reliant on foreign trade as we are. This was a GLOBAL phenomenon for which no government in the world (except possibly the Saudi one) could be held to blame.

So Steve; I submit to you (and other readers) with back reference to that era as my example that inflation has other causes and that insofar as governments increase the nation's money supply this is not the driving force of inflation but the response. Supply rising to match demand.

2. The case of Japan which for the past quarter of a century has been caught up in a deflationary, not inflationary, spiral. Is that because 25 years ago the Japanese mint stopped printing yen banknotes and ever since has been steadily withdrawing existing banknotes from circulation? Somehow I think not! Yet if your theorising holds true that is what should have been happening.

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