I’ve been watching the crypto market for a long time. Naturally, being a tech person and an anarchist, Bitcoin was something that I was deeply interested in, but it wasn’t until last year that I actually started putting any money into it–and even then, only small amounts. More recently, I’m putting in literally every penny that I can afford. It’s pretty clear to me that crypto-currencies are the future, and that fiat currencies are going to be crushed. But before we get into that, let’s discuss this idea first that BTC and other cryptos are “fiat” currencies.
Fiat means “by decree,” basically. A fiat currency is one that some authority figure decrees to be the currency. This is why the USD is a fiat currency–the U.S. government has made it our currency and has, in the way that monopolies do, fought very hard to keep any competition from existing. It’s not being inflationary that makes a currency “fiat.” It’s having a government say, “This is your currency.” If the USD was abolished and the government switched to BTC, then BTC would be a “fiat currency.” In fact, a isn’t the right article to use when discussing fiat currencies; the is usually more accurate. The USD is the fiat currency.
In the past, kings and nations had to pay for wars using their gold and silver coins. War is expensive, and it has always been expensive. Historically, men who otherwise could have been doing something productive are instead paid to go out and be destructive. This obviously constitutes a net drain on wealth. You not only have people not being productive–and being paid to not be productive–but they’re also being deliberately destructive. Resources, gold, labor, man-hours… all of these things are destroyed during war, and all of them could have been used in a more capitalist sense by investing them and turning them into more wealth and resources.
Taxes were historically high upon barons and lords, who in turn taxed the shit out of their peasants to pay the king’s taxes. The peasants were not usually taxed directly by the king; the king commanded the barons, dukes, and lords to give him money, and they did so. However, the barons, dukes, and lords didn’t really do anything to earn money (neither did the king, of course), and so they had to steal it from the peasants through taxation. The king had to pay his soldiers to fight the wars, had to pay for swords and ships, and all of these other things, because an unpaid soldier is a disloyal soldier.
Soldiers are always the first people to be paid by the ruling power. We see this today in Venezuela where, despite crippling national poverty, soldiers still enforce the government’s bidding because they are still being paid, and offered extra toilet paper for their service. It becomes a matter of survival for the soldiers–everyone else is starving, but they can keep themselves and their families provided-for by continuing to serve the system that has made everyone else poor, but if they refuse to serve, then their families will starve with everyone else.
Because it was a necessity to pay soldiers and because it was impossible for any king to do everything they needed to do while also paying for a war, they instead resorted to inflation. Inflation is when the amount of currency increases while the amount of wealth it represents stays the same or decreases (typically, it decreases). Let’s use a silly example to explain it.
I give you ten M&Ms and I say “These are worth $100.” This means that each M&M is worth $10, yes? Then I say, “I’m going to make you more wealthy. Here’s twenty more M&Ms.” But you find, once you have thirty M&Ms, that they’re still only worth $100. You have more M&Ms, sure, but you still only have $100. Instead of making you richer, you have the same amount of money that you had before. This is inflation. The value of the M&M was inflated. Real life inflation is more dangerous than this, because I don’t actually give you the other twenty M&Ms. In reality, I keep them, and let you keep yours. You still have ten M&Ms, but they’re only worth $33.33 now. I didn’t make you wealthier, did I? I made you poorer.
I robbed you.
Instead of paying with pure gold coins, kings stretched their gold further by taking cheap metals like tin and plating them with gold. It was still “a gold coin,” but it was worth much, much less than a pure gold coin. Instead of having only one thousand gold coins, the king had ten thousand of these gold-plated coins. So if a soldier was paid one coin a week, then he was able to pay ten thousand soldiers that week, instead of only one thousand.
Today the United States Government does this by printing money instead of adding tin to gold coins, but it has exactly the same effect. Earlier today I watched a video of some obnoxious twats who rented dinosaur costumes to go to the White House and “protest” with signs saying that the government should fund national sciences. They may think that now, because the government’s inflation allows them to mask the true cost of this crap. But if the government had to actually steal from us tax us to pay its bills, they wouldn’t be out there asking for their taxes to be increased.
You know, people think our taxes pay for our roads, our education, our bridges, Medicare, Medicaid, and these wars… That’s so untrue. Our taxes leave a huge deficit, to the tune of about $600 billion dollars every year, and that deficit just increases, raising the National Debt ever more. Even with obscene taxation (because we are taxed far more heavily than the colonists would have stood for), the government must inflate the currency to obscene degrees by borrowing it from the private banking cartel that is the Federal Reserve Bank.
So how do crypto-currencies fit into this? Well, the U.S. government can’t inflate them. They’re decentralized, so they can’t be inflated like that. The U.S. Government can drop money into bank accounts and buy large amounts of crypto, and it’s certainly doing so, but this is pouring value into the cryptos because the USD represents value because it’s easier to exchange and is used in wage payments. If clients paid my invoices in LTC and ETH… That would be fantastic. Anyway, if they did so, then my labor would be pouring value into LTC and ETH, and every new coin would be a representation of the work that I did to earn it. As it is now, it’s a representation of how much USD I spent and, in theory, the USD is a representation of the work I did to earn it.
Hey, there! Do you like what you’re reading? If so, I’m happy to announce that you can buy my book Dancing in Hellfire, which is the story of my life and the reasons that I hold the ideas that I hold. Additionally, those ideas are reflected throughout the book, which deals with issues such as drug abuse, parental abuse, domestic violence, a murdered parent, law enforcement, and being transgender with fundamentalist parents. Needless to say, it’s pretty interesting. It can be found here on Amazon for $3.99, so check it out and leave a review if you like it!
The government can’t just tell Crypto Managers, “We want 35 Bitcoins to pay for something,” because there are no “Crypto Managers” they can tell it to. This is the way the Federal Reserve System works, of course–the government tells this cartel of privately owned banks that it wants money (which has Interest attached to it, naturally), and the bank coalition hands it over, because they’re assured to make money in the long-run since the government will steal from us to pay it back. This money is created out of thin air, devaluing all the existent money like the M&Ms above.
If the government wants crypto, it has to buy them. To do that, it must raise money. To do that, it must steal from us. This will work for a while, and the government will buy cryptos, but the continual increase in value that cryptos are seeing will continue to cause people to move away from the USD and into cryptos. Amazon, Wal-Mart, and Target will inevitably start taking the more popular cryptos. We saw exactly the same thing with credit and debit cards, and with personal checks. There are minimal differences, because the debit cards and the personal checks also represented wealth. When people store their wealth, they want it to still be there when they go to retrieve it. A history of it “not being there” is why we have FDIC today, and is what the movie It’s a Wonderful Life is sort of about. Think of each crypto as its own MasterCard or Visa or Discover or American Express. Right now, I’d say BTC is Visa, ETH is MasterCard, LTC is American Express, and DASH is probably Discover.
In the beginning of cards, no one took them, because not enough people had the cards for the companies to justify the expense in setting up their systems to accept them as payment. There are also legal hurdles, but let’s put those aside for the moment. As more people make money in cryptos and find that they are excellent places to store wealth, more people will store their wealth in them, and more people will carry the “cards” and motivate Target et al. to install “card processing machines.” In time (and, due to how accelerated social changes have become, I’d bet it will be within ten years), larger corporate employers will offer employees the option of being paid in crypto currencies.
This is something that cannot be stopped. Pandora’s Box is open, and the only way to pull the plug now is to shut down the entire Internet and never let it come back online. Every BTC miner has a full copy of the blockchain and could restore the network. There is no amount of cracking down that could get and destroy every single part of the crypto networks. They will try, of course. They have no choice. To survive, they must try. We’re getting to that.
There already exist completely anonymous wallets like Jaxx, which allow a person to send and receive crypto without giving up any personal identifying information. This stuff is extremely difficult (although not impossible) to track. I purchase through Coinbase and then send to one of three other wallets. If the state zoomed in on me, they could certainly figure out exactly how much money I have where, but they can’t do this for everyone, and eventually they’ll be overwhelmed solely by numbers–it’s like how torrent sites openly exist today, such as the Pirate Bay. And even if The Pirate Bay one day finally goes down, a hundred will pop up in its place.
The Internet gave us far more power than they ever anticipated, and cryptos are the next stage of that. Once we have cryptos, we can be paid, and we can make purchases, all without ever touching the USD. The USD, which steadily loses value, is a terrible investment. It takes $20 today to buy what $1 bought in 1913. Meanwhile, it takes 0.1 BTC to buy today what it took 1 BTC to buy a year ago. Cryptos have been moving in the opposite direction from the USD; while it becomes less valuable, they become more valuable. Which would you want to be paid in? Which would you rather have–a one hundred dollar bill, or 1.2 Litecoins?
To make matters even worse, they will find that it’s very, very difficult to tax. And it’s impossible to tax in large amounts. Every single person would have to be audited. Massive amounts of wealth will slip right through the IRS’s fingers. “How much crypto do you have?”
“I plead the Fifth.”
They can easily look up your social security number to find your checking and savings accounts, and to find your stocks and shares, and tax you accordingly. But how are they going to find your crypto wallets? What if you store your crypto wallet on an Onion server–on the Tor network? Anonymity within anonymity.
What will happen when Saudi Arabia says, “Sorry, man, but you have to pay us in ETH for our gas”?
It won’t matter by that point, of course. By that point, every American citizen will have started moving away from the USD. Wal-Mart and other corporations will accept it as payment, and they’ll offer to pay people in the same currency. The government’s stranglehold on our wealth will have been broken. So how will it pay $300,000 to teach hookers in the Phillipines how to use condoms? How will it pay $1.6 trillion to fight in foreign countries? The soldiers wouldn’t accept the USD as payment, and neither would the tank and missile manufacturers.
“Taxation” is the only way–inflation will have been ruled out, because they don’t control the currency and can’t inflate it.
And this is why the anonymity matters. They cannot tax what they cannot track. And if they begin kidnapping random people to extort money from them, I don’t believe even the slothen, lackadaisical Americans would put up with that. “We’re going to institute a 0.01 BTC tax to pay for a hammer for NASA to use.”
Once we have to actually be directly taxed to pay for this shit, these government schemes will evaporate. You want to End the Fed? You want to abolish the Department of Education? You want to end Medicaid and welfare? You want to stop the wars? You want to keep the government from paying ludicrous amounts of money to teach hookers how to use condoms?
It’s done with cryptos.
I don’t know if Bitcoin will be one of the holdouts in the end. It has a lot of baggage attached to it. To many people, Bitcoin is used for money laundering and for paying ransoms. It’s going to be very difficult for BTC to get out from under that shadow, even if it’s possible. And I know BTC people are celebrating as it approaches $5,000 per (and I would be, too), and I congratulate them–but their excitement is a little undue. We’re still in the very, very early phases of this. We haven’t even come close to 5% adoption rates. We’re still deep in the Early Adopter phase.
Once we get around 5%, television shows and movies will begin featuring cryptos. Popular mainstream figures and shows like Pewdewpie, Family Guy, Rick & Morty, and South Park will begin mentioning it in regular conversation. They’ll show characters making money with it, making purchases with it… Then, with the Trend Setters like them on board, we’ll reach about 15% adoption. The Trend Setters will bring in the Trend Followers, and that is when Target et al. will start accepting it at the cash registers.
Many people will enter expecting to multiply their wealth by twenty times, hundred times, and so on, but that phase of the cryptos will mostly be over, and a few primary cryptos will be in the lead, and there they will stay until the next paradigm shift. Some new crypto with some new, novel algorithm won’t sway the masses of people. They won’t be impressed by Newcoin’s shiny new algorithms, and will stay with whatever cryptos are in the lead. I think it’s going to be Ethereum, Litecoin, and something else–probably not Bitcoin, because of all its baggage (and its price). Adoption rates will slow down, as these trend followers tell everyone that the “wealth people were making” must have been greatly exaggerated, because they’re only making 1% or 2% gains. The late arrivers will finally get on board, leaving only the iconoclasts, rebels, and conservatives out of the loop, and by then the Gold Rush will officially be over. There will be no more meteoric rises from $40 to $100, or from $600 to $5000.
And there will be losses. I see a lot of people excited about LTC’s climb right now–myself among them, and I really can’t afford for it to plummet–but it did plummet earlier this year, coming in at about $15 per and dropping to less than $2 each around February. Someone who bought 100 LTC while it was $15 each and sold them when it fell to $2 each lost $1300.
I don’t like Bitcoin, to be honest. It has too much baggage, and I’m more than a little envious of the people who bought it at $10 a pop and now have tens of thousands of dollars. What can I say? I’m honest about my motives. I want to see BTC collapse because I’ll feel better about having missed that boat, and I want to see the smugness wiped from Bitcoin Champions’ faces. It’s petty, I know. But the smugness! My god, the smugness. They act like it’s impossible for BTC to rapidly collapse. And it’s not only possible, it’s extremely likely to, around the time the Trend Setters start coming in.
The dumbest thing I heard this week was someone saying that “the number of coins purchased doesn’t matter–its percentage of growth relative to the USD is all that matters.”
That’s Old Paradigm thinking. In fact, the amount of coinage is all that ultimately matters. If the USD collapses, which it ultimately will, and cryptos will be the reason why, it won’t matter one tiny freaking bit that BTC was valued much more highly, according to the USD, than ETH. 0.01 BTC may be worth $100 right now, but if you take that USD away, what do you have? You have 0.01 of a currency. And without the USD, that 0.01 of a currency is a lot less than 1.00 of another currency. Without the USD measuring these currencies relative to one another, the amount of coinage will be all that freaking matters. You could have your wealth vanish in a heartbeat if people decide that a car is worth more than 6 BTC. Without the USD there saying those 6 BTC are worth $30,000, how are you going to get anyone else to accept that your 6 BTC are an even exchange for a car?
This is why the amount of coinage matters. If you get trapped in the Old Paradigm and attempt to apply it to the New Paradigm, in the end I don’t think you’ll have any wealth left at all. Right now, the only thing keeping BTC so valuable is literally the existence of these other currencies. Erase them from the equation, and what do you have? 0.04 BTC. Well, I’ll have quite a lot more than that of ETH and LTC.
And most people intuitively understand this, even if they couldn’t elucidate it. Most people won’t be willing to drop $500 on a tenth of a Bitcoin when they could spend that same amount of money and get five Litecoins. Who would buy a tenth of a BTC instead of five LTC? Not very many people. And their reasoning is solid, even if they don’t realize it, and even if they don’t know why, exactly, they prefer “five of one thing” to “0.1 of another thing,” even if the values are theoretically equal: those values will vanish. Cryptos themselves will make sure that those values vanish, and that the only thing that will be left is “five of this coin” and “0.1 of that coin.”
I’ve made no secret of the fact that I strongly dislike Gary Johnson and strongly disapprove of the “Libertarian” Party’s choice to nominate him (again) for President, just as I strongly disapprove of the direction that the libertarian party has taken in recent years. It is increasingly the party of classical liberals and liberty-leaning Republicans, and I know a lot of “libertarians” who support Rand Paul and wanted him to be Gary Johnson’s Vice President.
I mean… What do you even say? What do you even say to people who claim to be libertarians without knowing the first thing about libertarianism?
Libertarianism: What is it?
Libertarianism is the political ideology that liberty is the best method of solving almost all problems, and that force, violence, and coercion are only acceptable to defend liberty and as a response to force, violence, and coercion. Force, violence, and coercion are the only way that rights can be violated; in fact, force, violence, and coercion instantly and by definition violate the rights of the person who is a victim of force, violence, and coercion. Libertarianism is the ideology that the state should exist only to protect liberty, and should only use force, violence, and coercion to protect liberty. I go one step further and am an anarchist, because I don’t believe that the state can protect liberty, and I hold that its very existence is counter to liberty. Anarchism aside, there is no ambiguity in this platform, and a libertarian’s position on any given matter should be easy to guess.
Does the issue utilize force, violence, and/or coercion?
If yes, then the libertarian rejects it. If no, then the libertarian doesn’t give a shit about it.
It’s really that simple.
There’s no room for disagreement on this matter or that issue, because force, violence, and coercion (collectively: aggression) can always be demonstrated, and must always be rejected. In fact, to even join the Libertarian Party, one is required to sign what is basically the Non-Aggression Pact:
I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals.
Recent years have seen an influx of disaffected Republicans and liberty-leaning conservatives who do not understand that the Libertarian Party is built from principles, not ideas, and there is a difference. The Republican Party is a party of ideas, a party where issues and solutions can be discussed, suggested, picked apart, accepted, and rejected. The Democrat Party is a party of ideas, where issues and solutions can be discussed, suggested, picked apart, accepted, and rejected. But the Libertarian Party is a party of principles, and those principles are set in stone. They are not up for discussion, and they cannot be put up for discussion without violating the very core of the libertarian party: that force, violence, and coercion are not acceptable.
Take the question of marijuana, for example. Should it be illegal, should it be legal? Some people within the Libertarian Party would discuss this and have a debate about it, and that’s nonsense, because the question has already failed at the first hurdle. Does possession or usage of marijuana entail force, violence, and coercion? No. Everything else is completely irrelevant, and the government has no right to weigh in on the subject. Prostitution is another area that “libertarians” are debating. Should it be legal? Should it be illegal? Should it be legal, but regulated? Again, this is a discussion that is not warranted under libertarian principles, as prostitution (when taken out of the black market, obviously) does not involve force, violence, or coercion, and the state therefore has no right to weigh in on it.
Gary Johnson is against the notion of religious freedom and wholly rejects the idea that businesses should be allowed to discriminate on religious grounds. Gary Johnson fails to realize that saying “I don’t want to do business with you or people like you” in no way, shape, or form involves aggression, and thus the government has no right to weigh in on the matter. This is just one of many areas where Gary Johnson abides libertarian principles until they’re no longer convenient and easy, at which point he rejects them in favor of his own ideas. Because he thinks discrimination is really, really, really wrong, he is okay with the government legislating against it, even though it involves no violation of anyone’s rights, and thus he has his own morality that guides him in deciding when to apply libertarian principles and when not to.
In effect, Gary Johnson wants to legislate his morality. Unless he doesn’t care about the behavior, in which case, “No, he’s a libertarian.” But if he dislikes the behavior, then he’s every bit as authoritarian as the people who banned sodomy.
Johnson’s pledge would be:
I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals… as long as the goal isn’t “to end discrimination.”
I have to blame Ron Paul for all the “new” libertarians who don’t know the first thing about libertarianism, though that isn’t Ron Paul’s fault. These people were brought into the folds of liberty by Ron Paul (as was I), but they stopped with Ron Paul and assumed that he was Mr. Libertarian. They may not have ever even read any of Ron’s books. They certainly never read Mises, Rothbard, Nock, or Hayek. Their understanding of libertarianism comes from Ron Paul, and so that’s what they think a libertarian is.
Ron himself would tell you that he’s a classical liberal, though, and he explicitly wrote that in Liberty Defined. There’s a reason that Ron Paul only ran for President as a Libertarian once, and that was nearly three decades ago. I’m not knocking the guy–no one loves Ron Paul as much as I do. He was the guy who introduced me to liberty, after all. I’d also vote for Ron Paul in a heartbeat, even though I disagree with him on a few things just as much as I agree with Johnson. There are more areas where I disagree with Johnson, and…
That should be a pretty big indicator of how bad Gary Johnson is. Republican Ron Paul is more libertarian than the current Libertarian Party Presidential candidate. Worse still, Gary Johnson is only marginally more of a libertarian than Rand Paul. Rand Paul. The guy who slightly leans toward liberty but is otherwise a Republican to the core. Does anyone out there really think that Rand Paul is a libertarian? Does anyone out there who knows what libertarianism is really think that Rand Paul is a libertarian?
I just answered my own question, didn’t I?
The more people understand liberty and libertarianism, the more glaringly obvious it is that neither Rand Paul nor Gary Johnson deserve the label. Ron Paul deserves the label far more than either of these two, and Ron Paul refused to accept the label. Granted, he has become more libertarian since his retirement, and he has always been a champion of liberty and libertarianism. The same cannot be said of Johnson and Rand.
But Johnson is Bringing In New People!
Yeah, and I addressed that in my podcast.
The problem is that these “new people” brought in by Johnson who think that libertarian means “fiscally conservative, socially liberal” not only outnumber us (obviously) but also pick the presidential nominee. Do you see the problem? Johnson brings in people like him who have no idea what a libertarian even is, and they nominate more people like Johnson. When people like me point out that there’s nothing libertarian about any of these people, we’re told to shut up, that we don’t know what we’re talking about, that we just don’t want the party to be successful, that we need to fall in line, and that they are what a “true libertarian” looks like, while we’re just spiteful.
Johnson literally stole the Libertarian Party right out from under us, and these endorsements he is getting by big-name Republicans is not going to help matters, and neither is the influx of more disaffected Republicans who hate Donald Trump. I think it’s great that the party is growing. But as it grows, the education must also grow, or the LP will just become the GOP. It’s already happening, after all. Look at our presidential nominee and the endorsements he is getting. With libertarian principles slain on the altar of mass appeal, what, exactly, distinguishes the Libertarian Party from a party of unhappy liberty-leaning Republicans?
These people must be made to understand that they have no idea what they’re talking about, and that Gary Johnson is not Mr. Libertarian. They don’t have time to read Anatomy of the State, End the Fed, Human Action, The Road to Serfdom, On Intellectual Property, and whatever else? Fine. That means it’s our job to educate them. And I don’t think any of us mind that.
The problem is that they aren’t willing to listen, because they think they know what libertarian means, and it means “fiscally conservative, socially liberal.” They think it means “Basically like Ron Paul” and “Basically like Gary Johnson” and our bemused head-shaking does nothing to reach them.
So what, in a sentence, is my issue with Gary Johnson?
Gary Johnson has made me a heretic to my own party.
And let’s not even get into the fact that he claims to be a champion of the Fourth Amendment, and wants to let in Syrian refugees–except that he wants to spy on them and monitor them based on their religious beliefs and their nation of origin, even though he has no probable cause or justification or warrant! How can this guy claim to be a defender of the Fourth Amendment?
“I defend the Fourth Amendment sometimes,” is what you mean to say, Johnson. “As long as you’re not a Muslim from Syria.”
That’s the exact mentality that gave us the Patriot Act! And you dare claim to be a libertarian? This is exactly the sort of “I’m a libertarian… unless I’m not” crap that Johnson is notorious for. One either supports the Fourth Amendment or one doesn’t. Gary Johnson wants to have it both ways. Either people have the right to privacy without being spied upon by the government until they’ve demonstrated probable cause and the state has gotten a warrant, or people don’t have that right. Gary Johnson, however, would say “People have that right, unless I think they shouldn’t.” That is not a libertarian position. And, again, by what hidden criteria does he use to determine when people should be protected by the Bill of Rights and when they shouldn’t be?
That is how badly statism has conquered the world. Even the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate uses a non-principled metric to determine who gets rights and who doesn’t.
Libertarians, I implore you: kick Gary Johnson and his ilk from the party. If he was willing to learn, that would be one thing. But he has demonstrated that he is not. He has had this glaring contradiction (“I believe in the Fourth Amendment, unless you’re a Muslim refugee from Syria”) brought to his attention, and he waves it away. He knows that he is not following libertarian principles. Why are we still discussing this “fiscally conservative, socially liberal” clown? Kick him from the party and nominate an actual libertarian. Kick Austin Petersen while you’re at it, because he openly says that the Non-Aggression Pact is stupid. That’s the VERY BASIS of the party!
What is going on? Kick these people out until they’re willing to follow the principles. The GOP and Democratic Party are what happens when you let people in who don’t give a duck-squatting shit about the principles.
I meant to post this several days ago. I’m sorry that I didn’t. This one focuses on using Obamacare as its example, and I’m posting it without looking at it further. Keep in mind my addendum to the previous entry in this series–these were written as I was still fleshing out my ideas on anarchy and free market principles. Basically, I know more now than I did then, about how economy works and how it is merely the result of humans acting, hence why Mises called his magnum opus “Human Action.”
I did fix the links, though. And just wanted to say… “Ah. The days before I had a consistent policy for using bold and italics, and occasionally went a bit overboard on emphasis… Good times. ;)”
Before we get too deeply into this, we must first discuss a few very basic [I promise: they’re basic] economic principles regarding Supply and Demand, because the Affordable Care Act (colloquially, Obamacare) relies on your ignorance regarding basic economic laws. If the masses understood these basic economic principles, the Affordable Care Act would have no chance of reaching the American People, because it can be demonstrated in just a few minutes that sound and proven economic principles predict with certainty that Obamacare will be a complete failure. It has no chance of success, because, in order to succeed, Obamacare requires that these basic, sound, and proven economic principles be wrong–and they’ve been known for a very long time to be right.
These four basic laws are:
If demand increases and supply remains unchanged, a shortage occurs, leading to a higher equilibrium price.
If demand decreases and supply remains unchanged, a surplus occurs, leading to a lower equilibrium price.
If demand remains unchanged and supply increases, a surplus occurs, leading to a lower equilibrium price.
If demand remains unchanged and supply decreases, a shortage occurs, leading to a higher equilibrium price.
I truly hope you understand these 4 principles, because there isn’t much I can do to explain them. They’re self-explanatory, and it’s very difficult to explain things that are self-explanatory. If the demand for health care increases (i.e., more people want to go to the doctor) and the supply of health care remains the same (i.e., there aren’t any new doctors added to the health care system), then a shortage occurs and prices rise. If there are 100 people who want to go see 10 doctors at $100 per visit, then if we increase those 100 people to 150 people (increasing demand) but leave only 10 doctors in the system, then there are still only 10 doctors to go around the increased number of people. Instead of 100 people using 10 doctors, there are now 150 people using 10 doctors. So what will happen as a result of this increase in the Demand? If supply does not increase, then Doctors will raise their prices. This is because higher prices lower demand, another foundational principle of economics. There may be 150 people wanting to see a doctor if they only have to pay $100, but if they have to pay $200 to see a doctor, some portion of those 150 will decide they don’t want to see a doctor–Demand will, therefore, lower.
If, however, no new doctors are added to the system (supply does not increase) and doctors cannot raise prices to offset the increased demand, then a severe shortage occurs, because there is now a Price Ceiling in place, and Price Ceilings always create Shortages and invoke the rationing of the good in question. When during World War 2, the Government fixed the price of Gasoline, gas station owners could not raise their prices and had to consider selling gasoline at prices lower than what the Market demanded because of the increased Demand and the decreased Supply. Since the same amount of people still wanted gasoline but the supply of gasoline had lowered, the only free market course was to raise prices, but the Government made doing that illegal. People continued buying gas, since higher prices didn’t decrease demand, and there were shortages as a result of the Price Ceiling (“You can’t raise the price beyond X!”).
Now–I know what you’re thinking. “What the fuck, I/E? Your blog is supposed to be accessible!” But I promise that the graph isn’t as complicated as it initially looks. First, there is the blue curve–S. Obviously, that’s the Supply line. There are two red lines–D1 and D2. These are the Demand curves. We’re assuming in this graph that the Demand for the good increases. Let’s use Pringles as an examples. For whatever reason, the Supply of Pringles cannot increase except on the Supply line. It cannot increase as a result of increased Demand; there cannot be a shift in aggregate Supply (sorry about that; the term was unavoidable). So the Pringles factory can only produce a number of Pringles that falls on the Supply line; the Supply line cannot move.
Now we’re going to look at Demand1–many people want Pringles. But, suddenly and because of a new hot flavor of Pringles chips, the Demand for Pringles increases (adding a new flavor does not increase the Supply of Pringles, because in order to make the new flavor, they had to decrease the amount they were making of other flavors).
Look back to the graph at P1 and Q1. At x amount of Demand, as demonstrated by D1, the Price of Pringles will be lower and the Quantity sold by the Pringles company will be higher (because Demand is higher and because Supply can only increase along the curve–adding new factories would shift the curve, and that isn’t a possibility at the moment). This makes sense. Demand increases, so Pringles sells more chips and they also raise their prices. We’d all expect this to be the case.
And when we increase the Demand by moving to D2, the Supply increases according to the Supply curve. Note that these are notstraight lines. They are curves, which means that the Supply will never increase exactly in proportion to the increased Demand. Supply will always, because of the arcs, decrease less than would correspond to the increase in Demand. If these were straight lines, then if Demand increased, Supply would increase by an amount exactly in proportion to the increase in Demand. But economics never deals with straight lines, because straight lines require that conditions be perfect, that the amount of unutilized resources simply pop into existence the moment they are needed and back out of existence when they are not. This is never the case in the real world (one of the main flaws of Keynesian economics is that it, more often than not, requires absolutely perfect market conditions that are never reflected in the real world). The Supply increases on a curve because, if 50 people can produce 5000 cans of pringles, it doesn’t necessarily mean that 60 people will produce 6,000 cans of Pringles–it is far more likely that increasing the labor force to 60 will only increase the “cans of pringles” by 800 or so. As size grows, previous levels of efficiency become harder to maintain and it becomes impossible to get the same Input>Output yields.
This is why economics often deals with Marginal increases and Marginal decreases. It is the observation that, if 50 people make 5000 cans of Pringles, then it isn’t true that 60 people will make 6000 cans of Pringles; it’s true that 60 people will make between 5000 and 6000 cans of Pringles, and the number they actually make will fall in the upper range of averages. If, however, we double the workforce it also doesn’t mean that 100 people will make 10000 cans of Pringles; in fact, because increasing Input doesn’t decrease Output proportionally, we would predict that doubling the Input (via doubling the workforce, which isn’t exactly “doubling Input,” but let’s keep it simple) won’t necessarily double the Output; we’d expect 100 people to make about 8000 cans of Pringles if 50 people make 5000 cans.
Has this gotten too complicated? I’m worried that it has.
Back to the graph. So we find that even if we can increase Supply along its curve (by introducing more workers to the Pringles factory), it won’t raise in an amount exactly in proportion to the increase in Demand. If Demand doubles from 5000 people wanting Pringles to 10000 people wanting Pringles, if 50 workers produce 5000 cans of Pringles and we know that doubling the input to 100 workers will not yield 10000 cans of Pringles, then we know that to offset the increase in Demand, we must do more than double the Input. If 50 workers make 5000 cans and 100 workers will make about 800 cans, then we’ll actually need to roughly triple the workforce to 150 people to produce those 10000 cans.
Suddenly Pringles is paying three times the amount they were to meet a Demand which has only doubled. If Pringles pays each worker $10 an hour, then they were paying out $500 to an hour to meet Demand1. But when Demand doubles to D2, Pringles will need roughly three times the number of workers (actually, between 2x and 3x, but we’re using 3x because anything over 2x becomes a loss) and will need to pay out $1500 an hour to make a Supply which equals Demand2. But Demand2 doesn’t earn them enough money to meet the increased expenses of tripling production to meet an increased Demand–for obvious reasons. If Pringles has to suddenly pay 3 times the amount of money they were paying before but they’re only earning 2 times the amount of money they were before, then Pringles is suddenly losing money.
So it’s not only impossible, along given Supply curves (without the Supply line itself moving, which we’ll look at in a moment), for Pringles to meet an increase in Demand, it’s also not even economically viable. Pringles would lose money if they attempted to please everyone by meeting the increased Demand by a corresponding increase in Supply. Instead, the Free Market would have the price per can of Pringles rise, the Supply of Pringles increase somewhat, and the quantity of Pringles sold to increase. But because of the increased Price, Demand will actually go back down, as many people don’t want to try the new flavor of Pringles badly enough to pay $3 per can when the old price was $2.25.
That’s the best I can do in explaining this. I hope you grasp it.
An Increase In Supply
Calm down. It’s the same thing as the previous graph with the difference that there are now two Supply lines. Here we are assuming that Pringles isn’t restricted to its current amount of “resources” (which we exempted the labor force from in the previous example, allowing that Pringles could still hire more workers to satisfy moving along the Supply curve–there must be some resource which is currently underutilized in order for anything to move along a given Supply line); we are asserting that Pringles can do whatever it takes to increase its supply, which is, I hope you’ll see, a much more accurate reflection of the real world. Pringles can hire new people, invest in new production technologies, open more factories, and do all sorts of creative things to meet an increase in Demand. In short, in the real world, Pringles isn’t restricted to a given Supply line; they can move the line. And, moreover, because we’re allowing that the Supply line can be moved, you’ll notice that we are now using straight lines. We’re assuming that Pringles won’t run out of potatoes, land on which to build new factories, or workers to be hired. These assumptions may or may not be accurate, but we’re going to assume that all resources Pringles would need currently exist and are plentiful but underutilized.
Let’s imagine that Demand increases from D1 to D. Let’s also assume that Pringles can rise to the challenge presented by this increased Demand and do whatever is necessary to meet it. You’ll see that the old level of Demand (D1) meets the old Supply (S) at a Price lower than P and at a Quantity lower than Q. This means that, with the old Demand, people aren’t buying as many Pringles (which makes sense, as the Demand is lower) and that the price of a can of Pringles is also lower (which also makes sense, as people don’t want them as badly). When we increase the Demand and keep Supply the same, we move to using the D line but we still use the S line; we do not use S1. This means that the price per can of Pringles will go up and the number of cans of Pringles sold will go up.
In order to meet the increased Demand, though, Pringles would move its Supply from S to S1–since doing so would increase the amount of money they were making (meeting a Demand yields money, after all). When S changes to S1 and D stays as high as it was (having already moved from D1 to D), the quantity of cans sold becomes an amount almost exactly in proportion to the quantity of cans sold at the old price, the old supply, and the old Demand. You’ll notice, however, that Q1 passes just slightly to the left of the nexus of D1 and S; the price per can is just slightly higher than an exact proportion to the nexus of S and D1 and the number of cans sold is just slightly lower than an exact proportion to the nexus of S and D1. This is why we don’t have to curve lines when we can freely move Supply and Demand; it happens naturally. Just as, in our previous example, doubling the workforce won’t necessary double the number of cans produced, so will moving the Supply line to account for the increased Demand not necessarily result in a price that is exactly in proportion to the old Supply and Demand. Maybe a can is now $.35 per ounce while originally it was $.32 per ounce.
In short, buying a can of Pringles won’t be “as good a deal” as it was before the increased Demand and Supply; it will be a slightly worse deal. And what would happen if we shifted the Supply from S to S1 while staying on the old Demand of D1? What would happen if Pringles suddenly opened new factories, hired new workers, used a new production technology, or some other method of “moving the Supply line” but they did this of their own accord and without any change in Demand?
We’re now looking at S1 and D, but we’re also assuming that D won’t move along its line, that no matter what happens, the Demand for Pringles won’t change at all. We’re not assuming that more people can be made to Demand Pringles (through marketing, word of mouth, and advertising), and we’re not assuming that people can be made to Demand Pringles more than they already do (also something that would be accomplished through marketing, word of mouth, and advertising). Instead, we’re assuming that a certain number of people want Pringles a specific level of “badly” and that nothing is going to change that. D meets S at this location, where the Supply corresponds to the Demand. But Pringles has suddenly increased the supply without regard to Demand. What happens? We have to move the Demand line to account for this, and we’d have to shift it to the left, so we’re now looking at a line not on the graph. Demand hasn’t changed, but the Supply has, so we must shift the Demand line to the left. We can use D1 for this.
As you can see, Pringles fucked up majorly. In order to sell the increased Supply, the price must be lowered substantially. Basically we have to shift the Demand line to the left. Don’t think of D1 as a change in Demand; think of it as the Demand staying the same but its proportion to the Supply changing. If Demand is 50 and Supply is 100, then the ratio is 1:2. If Demand stays at 50 but Supply changes to 150, then the ratio is 1:3. Demand hasn’t changed, but its relation to Supply has. That is why we must move the line to the left. This is also why we must move the Supply line, as done above, when Demand increases–the ratio between Demand and Supply has changed.
OMG, I’m So Bored
Sorry. I don’t know–I find this topic interesting. I’ve noticed that it’s a tendency of people to become bored with a topic when they do not understand the topic. I’ve noticed that when people become bored with Physics discussions, it’s usually because the conversation has become too advanced or too technical for their grasp; I’ve noticed that when people become bored with Economics discussions, it’s usually because the conversation has become too advanced or too technical for their grasp. If this stuff bores you, I recommend you either taking a few Economics classes at your local college or reading a few books on the subject. And if what you find bores you, start smaller and simpler. Don’t discard the subject entirely; it’s interesting enough to have fascinated numerous people to the point where they devote their entire lives to the subject. There must, then, be something interesting about it.
What the Fuck Does This Have To Do With Obamacare?
In some ways, Obamacare has no impact on Supply and Demand. Obamacare won’t suddenly make anyone want to go to the doctor and it won’t suddenly increase the number of doctors in the system. It will, however, increase Demand for health care because it is making health care a viable option for some 30,000,000 people. We dealt with much smaller numbers above, but it doesn’t matter. What happens when you increase Demand by 30,000,000 but don’t change Supply to account for the increased Demand? That’s right: prices rise. If, again, we have 100 people wanting to go to the doctor now and we have only 10 doctors, then the ratio is 10:1. If we increase it to 150 people wanting to go to the doctor without adding even ONE new doctor to the system, then we have changed the ratio to 15:1. And then prices must rise.
Increasing the amount of people wanting to go to the doctor by thirty million without adding even one doctor to a system that already is known to have too few doctors will only raise the cost of health care and will only decrease the health care’s quality. I never mentioned quality above because “the quality of Pringles” isn’t really an issue; Pringles are mass-produced. Health care is not. Quality can vary wildly from one doctor to the next, and if you increase the Demand without increasing the Supply, it is impossible for any doctor to maintain the Quality they were able to maintain with the old Supply:Demand ratio. Price is not the only thing impacted by an increase in Demand without an increase in Supply. For all services (this is also true of many goods, particularly those that aren’t mass produced), an increase in Demand without an increase in Supply will result in higher prices and lower quality.
All of Duck Dynasty’s duck calls are made by hand. Let’s consider for a moment that they cannot hire new employees to reflect that we can’t simply manufacture new doctors. We can’t. The best we can do is motivate people to become medical doctors, but that is an eight year investment, resulting in an eight year lag between a rise in Demand and a corresponding rise in Supply, and that is if we somehow managed to entice people into becoming medical doctors (which we can’t and won’t do). So we have to assume that they cannot simply bring in new people to meet an increase in Demand (for Duck Dynasty, perhaps there aren’t any more bearded rednecks to hire).
Basically, we cannot increase the Supply of health care. We can’t. Doctors are already known to be overworked and stretched too thin–hence people waiting in Emergency rooms for hours at a time. …Actually, we can increase the raw Supply of health care, but we can only do this by drastically lowering the Quality of healthcare received. We can only increase the Supply of health care by changing doctors from 5 minute visits which charge you $120 to 2 minute visits that charge you $180. We can only increase the Supply of health care, without adding new doctors, but having hospitals and general practices behave exactly as the DMV: draw a number, “NEXT!”
Anyway, so let’s say that someone suddenly wants the Duck Dynasty guys to multiply their orders by ten. This actually happened in one episode, and they responded by enlisting the help of the community. They increased their Supply to correspond to the new Demand by bringing in help. But let’s assume that this isn’t possible, since, after all, we can’t simply “bring in help” to increase the Supply of healthcare–the best we can do is entice people to become medical doctors which will, obviously take 8 to 10 years to yield any results (and by then Demand will have increased even more, since Populations are always growing, though this also theoretically increases the Supply at a given ratio… but since we’re in the process of fucking up that ratio with Obamacare by increasing Demand and not changing Supply, this whole parenthetical statement is irrelevant).
So what do the Duck Dynasty guys do if they need to increase their production 1000% and they can’t bring in any help to do that? What happens when the amount of productive resources (labor) they have stays the same but Demand increases by a factor of 10? They can’t simply speed up their conveyor belts (though they tried this in the episode, and it worked until they reverted to their Kindergartener mindsets… I swear to god one of them got in a canoe on the conveyor belt and fully intended to ride it off the edge–he almost certainly would have broken something if the CEO hadn’t come back there and stopped them). They can work faster and harder, but can they work faster and harder enough? Probably not. To assume that they can increase production by a factor of 10 is to assume that they are majorly underutilized, and if they were that inefficient, then the Free Market would have put them out of business long ago. It should be noted that the demand for duck calls, the handmade products, did not increase by a factor of 10; the random shit like t-shirts, mugs, and stuff did–the mass produced items had their Demand increased by a factor of 10; I don’t think the demand for duck calls changed at all… In fact, I’m not convinced that they sell very many duck calls at all. They don’t seem to earn much money from their actual duck call business; they make most of their money from the show and from related merchandise like t-shirts. Just go to Wal-Mart sometime. Duck Dynasty is the new Angry Birds.
Anyway, if they do have to increase their production of handmade duck calls by a factor of 10 and they can’t bring in any outside help to do that, what happens? They work much faster to try to meet the increased Demand. Unless they were horrendously inefficient and underutilized in the first place (which they are, but not in a way that their productivity isn’t 10% of what it could be–I would wager it’s more like 30% of what it could be). To assume that they are underutilized to a degree of 10% is to make an absolutely ridiculous assumption; show or not, the free market would have crushed that level of inefficiency long before they ever became millionaires. The Free Market, which achieves its ends through competition, abhors inefficiency.
To suddenly make 10 times the amount of handmade products which they were previously making, the quality on the products would have to decrease. They wouldn’t have time to carefully test each one. They wouldn’t have time to carefully craft each one. They’d work at a break-neck pace and quality would suffer as a result. Do any task. Now attempt to do that same task ten times in the same amount of time it took you to do it once. Yeah.
The only way to increase a supply to meet an increased demand without bringing in new resources is to raise prices and lower quality. Snap your fingers 60 times in one minute. Now snap your fingers 600 times in one minute. Were you able to do it? How “good” were your snaps when you attempted to snap your fingers 10 times as fast as you were before? If you had to snap only 60 times in one minute, then you could produce nice, loud, and ringing snaps, one per second. But if you had to do ten times that, you’d have to snap your fingers 10 times per second. If you somehow managed to do that, by the time you were 30 seconds in, you’d be exhausted. Economic principles are not difficult to understand.
Many people try to make them out to be very complicated and difficult to grasp, but this is intellectual dishonesty; these people want to deliberately mislead you and keep you ignorant so that you don’t realize that what they’re proposing is absolute nonsense.
And, believe it or not, snapping is a good demonstration of the economic principles we’re discussing. We have a Demand for snaps, and I want 60 of them by the end of a full minute. So you Supply those 60 finger snaps, and generally give me good quality snaps of your fingers.* But if Demand increases… A factor of 10 is a bit unreal. Let’s increase it only by a factor of 3. Snap your fingers 180 times in a minute. Demand has increased to 180 and you, without bringing in any outside help (someone to snap with you, adding to your total to “give me”), are trying to increase the Supply to meet that increased Demand. If you manage to do it, the quality of your snaps will still be substantially lower than the quality of your slower, more careful snaps.
And it’s HEALTH CARE of which we’re lowing the quality. We’re not lowering the quality of duck calls or someone’s snaps of their fingers. We’re lowering the quality of health care at a time when the quality of health care is already abominable. What good will it do these 30,000,000 to be given health care when the quality of that health care has decreased to the point of barely being useful? Already we wait for hours in Emergency rooms. Already we wait for an hour in the lobby of a doctor’s office, then an hour in a room alone, then we have about 5 minutes with the doctor–who writes us a prescription for some combination of: painkillers, barbituates, and antiobiotics–and then we leave, having paid the doctor roughly $100 for that “service.”
Increasing the number of people going to the doctor will only increase the time we spend waiting in the lobby, increase the time we spend waiting in a room alone, decrease the amount of time we spend with the doctor, and increase the amount of money we have to pay to experience the whole bizarre process.
Yeah, But… Those 30,000,000 People NEED Health Care, I/E. We Can’t Let Them…
No, we can’t let them go without health care. We can’t let them die of diseases that could have been prevented because they couldn’t afford a doctor visit to receive the vaccine. We can’t let them die of chronic illnesses that could have been curbed if the illness had been discovered sooner. But how is increasing waiting times, decreasing the amount of time with the doctor, and raising the prices for virtually everyone else (and raising insurance costs–my sister’s health insurance cost more than DOUBLED because of Obamacare…) going to help?
It isn’t, and this is tragic because there are better solutions. There are much better solutions.
Yes, I believe that individuals should have the right to seek health care.
No, I do not believe that we have the right to force individuals to seek health care (except in the case of child abuse and negligence).
No, I do not believe that we have the right to force doctors to lose money by not charging enough or by making them treat people who can’t pay.
Yes, I’m aware of the Hippocratic Oath and the tendency of Doctors before the existence of Medicare and Medicaid to give discounted treatment to the poor and to volunteer their time at free medical clinics.** Before State-run health insurance schemes, almost every doctor gave discounts or free treatment to the poor and elderly–just like most corporations have a 10% Senior Citizen’s discount even though the Government isn’t forcing them to…
Yes, I worry that it’s only a matter of time before corporations mentioned above are being forced to give 10% discounts to Senior Citizens. It may very well come to pass that the Government steps in and forces businesses to do this. A generation or two later, everyone will have completely forgotten that this law isn’t necessary and that most corporations gave a 10% discount long before the Government stepped in and forced them to do it.
No, I don’t think that the Affordable Care Act is going to do any good to help a system that is already primed to collapse, and this blog demonstrates the unimpeachable economic principles for me thinking this. If you want to demonstrate that the Affordable Care Act can be successful to any degree, then you must demonstrate how we can increase Demand without increasing Supply and Prices and lowering Quality. This, however, cannot be demonstrated because it’s absurd in the highest degree. It’s impossible and it flies in the face of everything we know about economics.
The State is relying on the ignorance of the masses regarding basic economics. If the masses knew anything about the basic laws of Supply and Demand, then the masses would understand that Obamacare has no chance of succeeding in “helping” the health care crisis in our nation. The first 4 principles found at the start of this blog demonstrate unequivocally that the Affordable Care Act cannot work. It literally cannot. Not “will not.” CAN not. It is an economical impossibility. And this is obvious. If we were taught Economics in high school, then the Affordable Care Act would have had no chance of being passed.*^ Actually, a lot of things would be and wouldn’t be if we had been properly taught Economics in high school instead of four years of grammar and English classes. Fuck, man. Once you start the First Grade, you’ll have an English class every year until you graduate high school. Considering how infrequently most people write, this is obnoxious, especially since we could spend that time with BETTER and more important subjects. English III and English IV should have been electives, and a full-year Economics class and a full-year Newtonian Physics class should have replaced them. If you don’t have the English language down by the time you’re passing the 10th grade, then two more years of the same subject is NOT going to help you.
We wouldn’t allow the EPA unilateral power, and we wouldn’t allow it or any other government or pseudo-government organization to be filled with non-elected officials. We wouldn’t allow a fiat currency. We wouldn’t allow the government to give us worthless sheets of paper, tell us they’re valuable, and then systematically steal all our money via inflation and the devaluation of the currency. We would require that Congress do as the Constitution commands:
The Congress shall have power… [t]o coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures… [emphasis added]
Nowhere in the Constitution is Congress given the power to delegate its powers and responsibilities to other organizations. The Constitution does not give Congress the power to give a coalition of privately owned banks the right to make our money. And this is common sense. Just think about it. If your wife gives you permission to have sex with her, you can’t delegate that privelege to someone else. You can’t say, “Well, you gave me permission to have sex with you, but… I’m going to let Bob here do that.” Things just don’t work that way. Your wife would divorce you if you tried some shit like that. And we’re the wife, giving Congress the permission to have sex with us–and Congress said, “Well, you gave us permission, but we’re going to let someone else do it.” “Um, no,” the wife would say. “I didn’t consent to that.” Neither did we consent to allow Congress to delegate its powers to non-elected organizations, especially not the power to make our money, which necessarily controls our entire economy.
Plus, the Constitution gives Congress the power to “coin” money. We are not arguing semantics here. Congress was not given the power to print money, and “printing money” is not the same as “coining money.” The Founders would never have consented to allowing Congress to print money, because the dangers and problems of paper money have been known for thousands of years. Every nation that has used paper currency has experienced hyperinflation, has overextended its reserves, and has promptly collapsed. There has never been an exception to this. Nations that existed for centuries using gold and silver coins of specific weights collapsed shortly after switching to a fiat (paper) currency. Worse still, though many Americans do not know it, we are NOT on a gold standard. The Dollar is NOT backed by gold or silver. It is JUST a sheet of paper. It has no value external to how much of it is in circulation and whether anyone will accept it as payment.
The reason Congress had the power to regulate the value of coins and fix the standards of weights? To prevent people from making coins that are of a lower purity and to prevent people from clipping off small portions of coins to stretch them further (although, to some extent, this would be an acceptable and legitimate practice, as long as one didn’t try to pass off a “clipped coin” as an unclipped coin). Congress had the responsibility of making gold and silver coins for us to use and fixing (and making it known) the value of those coins by “fluffing” the coins out with less-precious metals. We would end up with a $1 coin not because we had a tiny little coin of gold but because we’d have a tiny amount of (real) gold covering a nickel-based coin. How much gold a $1 coin contained would be fixed and, if the coin was valued as a “5 gram gold coin” rather than being valued as a “$1 gold coin,” then inflation would be impossible. After all, 5 grams is always 5 grams.
This is why people advocate not just a return to the gold standard but a return to a commodity currency which has no arbitrary value attached to it. We advocate the use of gold and silver coins that are measured by the weight of the precious metal they contain, not some random value. We advocate using a coin that has 5 grams of gold, a coin that has 5 grams of silver, a coin that has 10 grams of gold, a coin that has 10 grams of silver, a coin that has 50 grams of gold, and so on… And the amount of grams of silver it would take to equal 5 grams of gold would be decided explicitly by the Free Market, not by Congress (as any attempt to fix this price manually would be price fixing and wouldn’t ever work–just like Congress’s attempts to fix the price of gasoline have never worked). If Congress set the exchange rate too high (requiring too much silver to get a certain amount of gold), then no one would ever want the silver coins because we wouldn’t consider them as valuable as gold coins. If Congress set the exchange rate too low (requiring not enough silver to get a certain amount of gold), then no one would want the gold coins because we wouldn’t consider them as valuable as the silver coins. Congress would have to hit the Goldilocks proportion perfectly, and since the amount of coins in the system would change constantly and could change drastically very quickly, the exchange rate would constantly be out of balance, making gold coins better one day and silver coins better the next and then gold coins much better the next… It wouldn’t be consistent and people would hate it. That’s why only the Free Market can do these things. People will automatically set an exchange rate that automatically corresponds to real-world conditions, and Congressional attempts to manually set an exchange rate would always be lower or higher than the one the People would set according to the Free Market, resulting in the imbalance and silliness I described.
But by using coins that are fixed as weights that demonstrate the purity of the coin, we don’t have to worry much about inflation. A five gram gold coin will always be a 5 gram gold coin and a 100 gram gold coin will always be a 100 gram gold coin. The only way that inflation could happen using commodity currencies is for the amount of that metal to actually increase, and there’s a limited quantity of gold and silver in the world. We would reach a point where inflation could no longer happen. And ALL economists have stopped spouting the nonsense that “Some inflation is good.” That argument has been thoroughly shredded and debunked, and if I remember correctly, that’s why Friedrich Hayek, the incredible successor to Mises, won the Nobel Prize in 1974.
Inflation is bad because if you insert more money into any given economy, it makes all the money in circulation worth less than it was before. If there are $1000 in circulation in a town and we suddenly put $1000 more into circulation, then every single dollar is worth half of what it was before; each dollar will only buy half of what it bought before. If a loaf of bread cost 25 cents before the inflation, then it will cost 50 cents after the inflation. This means that people who have retired and who have no way of gaining more money just had half of all their money stolen by inflation. This is the main reason the elderly in the U.S. are suffering so much: many of them have had to get jobs in order to bring in money because a portion of the money that had in their retirement account was stolen by inflation. I’ll never forget the first time I saw a 70ish year old woman working at a Wendy’s. FOR SHAME, AMERICA.
Do something about this. We’ve forced the elderly to come out of retirement and get low-paying, degrading, and humiliating jobs to cover the losses they incurred by monetary inflation and by the shenanigans which caused that inflation. We should be ashamed of ourselves. People who don’t have an income are those who are most affected by the effects of Inflation. That’s the elderly, America. When we debase the currency, we are hurting our grandparents and great grandparents more than we’re hurting anyone else. We should be thoroughly ashamed of ourselves for allowing this to happen.
Protect our elderly. And we can protect them by allowing them to accrue money that can’t be devalued and stolen by inflation. If you want to talk about supporting Medicare and Social Security to “help the old people,” then you should recognize that the single best thing we could do for the retired and for the nearly retired–and for everyone, really, since everyone is going to retire on money they saved up eventually–is use a currency that cannot be inflated to cover up the shenanigans of giant corporations. The bailouts hurt Gran-Gran the most. Gran-Gran had to get a job because of the bailouts. Shame on you. Fucking shame on you.
Obamacare and Economic Growth
Okay, I went really far off topic. But my point in all of this is that we cannot legislate our way into a growing economy. So often during Romney’s campaign I heard people say, “I agree with Romney. What we need to do is grow the economy.” And they had no idea what in the hell they were talking about. In general, they were discussing “growing the economy” as a way to negate the harmful effects of inflation, but the only way they could “grow the economy” would be with subsidies, grants, bailouts, and other attempts to pour resources into the system by pouring more money into the system.
There are only two ways to “grow an economy.” One can do nothing and let the Free Market and competition create wealth. Or one can give out subsidies, grants, bailouts, and other things in attempt to “jumpstart” the vehicle. But the vehicle broke down because of all the subsidies, grants, bailouts, and other things that we poured into it. Inflation caused the Recession; inflation was at the root of the housing bubble and is collapse, at the root of the derivatives market, and at the root of the toxic asset bubbles. Because the Fed held the interest rates on their loans (and loans from one bank to another) so low, it created the illusion that wealth was plentiful and no one minded loaning out money; in fact, loaning out money was a positive thing for banks. Because of the Fractional Reserve System, every time a bank loans money, 90% of that is created out of thin air. This causes inflation.
In a Fractional Reserve System, a bank only has to keep a certain percentage of its assets; it only has to have a certain percentage of assets to back up its debts. In the U.S. System, that percentage is only 10. Did you see the film, “It’s a Wonderful Life”? This is what allows runs to happen on banks. Banks loan out the money you give them, so when everyone panics and demands their money back, it is learned that the bank… doesn’t actually still have your money because they loaned it someone else. If a bank has had $2,000 deposited into it, then it can loan out $18,000. Obviously, the bank doesn’t have $18,000. It literally just creates it out of thin air the moment the money is loaned out. That is a fact which even the Federal Reserve admits. That’s what Fractional Reserve means; that a bank must hold a fraction of its assets in reserve. So after the bank loans out this $20,000 and keeps the $2,000 in its ledgers (because of withdrawals from accounts, the bank will occasionally have to borrow money to make up the difference and bring its reserve back up to 10%–the bank borrows this money from another bank, and that other bank–you guessed it–simply makes that money up out of thin air, too), one thing comes to mind. People have to pay back money they borrow. And they do. The bank has loaned out $18,000 and has kept $2,000 (occasionally borrowing from other banks, which are doing the very same thing), and now the people they loaned all that money to have paid it “back” to the bank. So the bank now has $20,000 (more, actually, because the bank also charged Interest on the loans). What can the bank then do with that $20,000? Keep it in reserve and loan out $180,000!
We’re literally paying banks “back” money that they didn’t loan us because the money did not exist until we paid it back. Banks have been sued over this–and the banks have lost the case. When the First Bank of Montgomery foreclosed on Jerome Daley’s home, he got a lawyer and sued the bank, saying that the contract he had with the bank required both parties to put up a legitimate form of property–Jerome would put up the house and the bank would put up the money. But Jerome alleged that the bank did not put up a legitimate form of property and that the bank didn’t put up anything at all–it just made up money out of thin air, said that it had that money, and gave Jerome this money that didn’t exist. And Jerome won the case. The judge decreed that the bank did not put up a legitimate form of property and that the bank did simply create the money out of thin air. Now, since this happened decades ago, there’s no doubt that the banks learned from the case and modified their contracts accordingly, to prevent anyone else from refusing to “pay back” money that they “borrowed.” So this almost certainly wouldn’t work today, and I wouldn’t recommend trying it. Especially since banks are much more powerful and entrenched than they were in Jerome’s day, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find a judge who will give you a fair ruling. You also won’t find a judge who will give you a fair ruling if you fight the IRS, even though the IRS requires you to give up your Fifth Amendment right, even though the IRS is illegal, even though the Sixteenth Amendment was never ratified, and even though there is no law on the books which requires anyone to pay taxes. These are all facts, and they will all be discarded by judges, so I don’t recommend not paying the IRS either… Though you shouldn’t, because it’s illegal and unconstitutional for them to make you give up your Fifth Amendment right and since the Sixteenth Amendment was never ratified, thus the Federal Government cannot levy any direct or unapportioned taxes like the Income Tax. But don’t try it. I’m not encouraging you to fight the system in this matter; I’m only saying that the system is cheating.
None of these things can cause real economic growth. They can cause the illusion of economic growth, and certainly some investments can yield pay-offs and rewards. If investment didn’t work, the stock exchange wouldn’t exist. But the Government has no right to steal from us to invest in this thing or that thing, especially since We the People won’t be given any pay-off or reward from the investment. But the Government isn’t supposed to be in the business of trying to make a profit… Moreover, all of these “investments” are paid with money that is created out of thin air and then repaid by the American People. The Government doesn’t make Dollars; the Government borrows money from the Federal Reserve Bank. Don’t let the name fool you; it’s no more part of the government than is Federal Express. The Federal Reserve Bank is a coalition and cartel run by twelve privately owned banks and receives no oversight from Congress, reports to Congress only a few times a year and isn’t accountable for anything, and has never been audited. The restrictions placed on Congress in examining the actions of the Federal Reserve are insane when you consider how powerful the dollar is and how much of an impact it has on our daily lives. In “End the Fed,” Ron Paul notes that the Federal Reserve Act of 1913 shows that:
Audits of the Federal Reserve Board and Federal Reserve Banks may not include:
Transactions for or with a foreign Central Bank [because we did pass a law a few years ago that allowed us to marginally audit the Fed, we learned that the Fed (short for “Federal Reserve Bank”) had been propping up the dictator of Libya], government of a foreign country [we also learned that the Fed was propping up numerous other dictatorial governments], or non-private international financing organization [such as the WTO and the World Bank];
Deliberations, decisions, or actions on monetary matters [which is 99% of what the Fed does…], including discount window operations, reserves of member banks, securities credit, interest on deposits, and open market operations [basically, we can’t audit anything they actually do];
Transactions made under the direction of the Federal Open Market Committee; or a part of a discussion or communication among or between members of the Board of Governors and officers and employees of the Federal Reserve System related to clauses (1) — (3) of this subsection [basically we can’t wiretap them even if we get a warrant… The Fed’s privacy is better protected than the privacy of Americans].
So other than the minute pieces of information the Fed voluntarily gives at its Congressional reports, which is a very small part of the actual information, we generally have no fucking clue what the Fed is up to. We have given them full power over our currency, and then we relinquished any authority to keep tabs on them.
Money Is Not Wealth
Pouring more money into any economy will not create wealth. As I mentioned above, if a gallon of milk costs 25 cents when there is $1,000 in circulation, then putting a total of $2,000 in circulation will not create wealth–it will only devalue the existing $1,000 and make the lives harder of anyone who has retired or who has no income. It certainly won’t create wealth.
A currency is just a system of measurement. It’s critical to remember this. A currency is how we measure the value of our productivity and the value of our resources and products. That’s all it is. Changing the value of a dollar won’t create wealth, and this is all that pouring money into an economy does; it only changes the value of a dollar. If you’ve got a pile of wood, then no matter what you measure it with, you won’t ever have more or less wood. The measuring system which you use will have no impact on how much wood is actually there. You could use inches, centimeters, yards, or a system you make up–none of it will change the amount of wood in the pile. You can even increase the “value” of an inch by doubling an inch’s size–but that won’t change the amount of wood in the pile. You can decrease the “value” of an inch by halving an inch’s size–but that won’t change the amount of wood in the pile. Ultimately, people who think we can grow the economy with grants, subsidies, and bailouts believe that we can change the value of an inch and somehow get more or less wood. But the amount of wood never changes. The only way to change the amount of wood is to get rid of some of it or to add some more wood to it; changing your measurement system will not change the amount of wood.
And the way we change the amount of wood in the pile that is our economy is by letting competition take over. Competition creates wealth. Competition creates efficiency, skilled workers, incentives, creativity, problem-solving, and, ultimately, wealth. The only way to “grow the economy” is to allow competition to be enhanced. And how can we enhance competition in the United States economy? Simple: we get rid of the primary factors that are detrimental to competition: Government Regulations. We let the Free Market take over. If a company pollutes too much or offers bad service or any other thing, then, in a Free Market, people would stop using that company. If there was competition, they wouldn’t be forced to use that company and “voting with their wallet” could actually MEAN something. But as long as we’re limiting competition with government regulations, voting with a wallet has no real impact. We don’t need the Government to make Texaco stop polluting (I don’t know if Texaco has a problem polluting or not). Society and the Free Market can do that all by themselves by not using a company that pollutes excessively.
Take the power that you should, as an American Citizen, have. Don’t let the Government tell you that you are powerless or that you need them to have your power. No, man–fuck that. You, in a Free Market, would have the power to regulate companies and businesses. Naturally, the State doesn’t want you to have that power; they want to have that power. So you’ve been told all of your life that they’re the only ones who can do it, that we need them to have that power, and that we shouldn’t or can’t have that power. But the same power we’ve given the Government…? It came from us. It’s OUR power. We can not only use that power–we can use it more effectively than the Government ever could.
* This was originally “clapping,” but I changed it because it sounded really bad to say “generally give me good quality claps” with the Clap being an STD.
** It should be noted that we now generally force doctors to volunteer their time at free medical clinics. We wouldn’t allow this in any other industry. We wouldn’t allow the government to force I.T. companies to spend one weekend a month working on the networks of schools (I’m scared to say that, since the wrong politician may read that and decide that we should do it). We wouldn’t allow the government to force Wal-Mart cashiers to spend two days each month working at the DMV. As I’ve stated before, we have no authority or justification in forcing people to do what we think is right.
*^ Actually, I took Economics in the first semester of my Senior year. It was a one-semester class (I don’t remember what I took the second semester because I… didn’t go back, so I didn’t take anything the second semester of my senior year) and it taught me nothing. It didn’t teach anyone anything, because the guy who taught us Economics was one of the football coaches and he knew nothing about the subject. All he did was have us read passages then answer the questions. There no lectures, no creativity, and no attempt to foster understanding. Moreover, Economics was an elective; I took it only because I like learning things and always have. But it certainly wasn’t a requirement of the curriculum. It should be.
Because Obamacare is about to hit us (unless the GOP performs a miracle for the wrong reasons), I focused this blog on the law in question and also went into some basic economics, the Federal Reserve, and again into Free Market Principles. As you can see from the final paragraph, this ultimately comes back, as did the previous two blogs, to Individual Responsibility. We have the power to use the Free Market to regulate corporations and businesses. We’ve simply lent that power to Government. And they’ve bungled the job, crushing the Market, and creating numerous problems. It is high time we took that power back, because we’re the only ones who can use it effectively. All the Government can do is fuck things up more.
I meant initially to focus this blog on “What is Anarchy? How does it work?” But I decided that, before I get into that, I must first go back into the Free Market and the power which Individuals hold. YOU are more powerful than any Government could ever be. Accept that power. Do not hide from it.
If you want to know more about the Government, what we created it for, and what function it has in our Society, misidentification of the Self as the State, and a demolition of the notion that a “Society” actually even exists, then read Anarchocapitalism, A Review Of: Part the Second. If you’re curious about the Free Market, Representative Governments, the failures of Welfare, the counterproductive nature of Social Security, Medicare, and other programs, and how the Free Market and voluntary principles can handle all of these things more effective, then read Anarchocapitalism, A Review Of: Part the First. If this paragraph is the first time you’ve seen the word “anarchocapitalism,” then go to Part One and then come back here.
Hopefully, I will actually address the meaning of Anarchy in Part Four. But no promises. This stuff must be addressed incrementally. As always, if there is something in this blog that is not adequately explained or which you do not understand, please comment seeking clarification. I want this series to be easily understandable.
This is particularly visible in the United States, where the Democrat Party is the party of hispanics, blacks, women, atheists, spiritualists, gays, and transgenders, while the Republican Party is the party of straight, white, Christian men. Battle lines were drawn, the Republican Party was painted as the party of narrow-minded WASPs, and the Democrat Party has spent the past twenty years talking condescendingly to and insulting Republicans.
People who know of my characteristics expect me to be a liberal, a Democrat. I despise Christianity–and religion in general. I’m young and college educated (my college degree is probably the possession of which I am most proud). I’m a transgender lesbian. I… probably should have led with that.
“What do you mean, you’re not a Democrat?” I can hear people shouting. “Clearly, you’re a Democrat!”
No… No, I’m not. I’m an anarchist, technically–or a Libertarian when I don’t feel like getting into the conversation that deeply. One thing I am not, though… is a Democrat.
I actually began as an ordinary Republican, born and raised under the teachings of my dad and grandmother; though I had broken from their religion, I had not been exposed to politics and to the issues long enough to have broken away from conservatism as a political policy. In 2004, just two months after my 18th birthday, I voted for George W. Bush, under the idea that we didn’t need to change Presidents just after going to war. By 2006, I adamantly regretted that choice, and I was among the many irate Americans who swept into office a Democratic Congress to restrain the hands of a wild President.
In 2008, I was a supporter of Hillary Clinton. Then I heard Obama speak on the news. To be honest, I was neither exhilarated nor inspired by the soothing voice and measured words of this man who would become the country’s first black president; I was terrified. His tone was filled with such assurance that I feared we were watching the rise of a dictator with charisma that would make David Karesh look like King Henry VIII. But this kneejerk reaction to the power of Obama’s oratory skills faded quickly, and I soon became a supporter.
Very shortly after, it became clear to my generation that we had been betrayed–again. Just as W. had betrayed us, so had Obama, who chose to keep none of the promises he made on his campaign trail. Among the dozens of important promises he made, the only one he kept was the abolition of torture, which, thank god, he did go through with. There is no excuse for torture, and no justification for it. Torture is the ultimate of evils and can never be exercised in pursuit of good. Torture, as an act of supreme evil, leads only to evil.
What was I to do, then? It was already natural to me to not care about race, sexual orientation, gender, and nationality, and these are major calling cards of the Republican Party. In late high school, I was captain of the Pro-Choice team in the Debate Club, as well. On social matters, I couldn’t have been more unlike Republicans, yet I also disagreed with this notion that it was the government’s responsibility to protect us from ourselves. Beyond that, the Democrat Party had just betrayed us–brazenly and without consequence. Never again could I support a party that had promised me so much, and yet delivered so little. Guantanamo Bay remains a prison, and there are still people there whose guilt has not been ascertained, because they have not been given trials. How the hell long does it take to organize a trial? Try these people or let them go.
Then, under the suggestion of a co-worker, I watched a “documentary” called Zeitgeist. While a great deal of Zeitgeist touts conspiracy theory as unequivocal fact (it alleges that it’s a fact that the American Government allowed Pearl Harbor to happen, but this is far from a fact; it alleges that Hitler burned down the Reichstag building, and this is far from a fact), much of the documentary is also reliable: all that it says about the Federal Reserve Bank is true.
Knowing about the Federal Reserve, of course, eventually led me to Ron Paul, the champion of the End the Fed rEVOLution. After having been betrayed by both political parties, Ron Paul was very much like a light in the darkness, shining gently far in the distance as a sultry wind carried the whisper “There is another way.”
I learned that for 27 years, Ron Paul had been saying and doing the same things, that his principles had never wavered, and that he was uniformly on the side of the people and liberty. For me, this was a perfect fit. Libertarianism combined individual responsibility with social liberalism–people can do whatever the hell they want, but people are also responsible for what they do. Such a common sense position.
But the attitude of the Faux Progressivism is that it’s bad to be responsible for yourself. Nowhere is this more clear than the Invincibility Mode that is being added to Star Fox Zero for Nintendo Wii U. “This isn’t right!” I, and people like me, said. “You have to reward people for putting in effort! You can’t just remove all the difficulty from a game like that.”
“You entitled babies!” we were told. “How dare you act like the fact that you put effort into it means you should be rewarded? So what if I don’t want to put in the effort? This means I shouldn’t get to enjoy the content?”
This is not a strawman. This is their actual argument; this is genuinely their position. We are entitled because we think effort should be rewarded. Despite believing that they should get everything without effort, they are not the ones being entitled… It’s maddening to watch it play out, because how do you explain to someone that a circle is round? How do you explain to someone that the sky is blue? How do you explain to someone who is acting entitled and screaming that you are acting entitled that they, in fact, are the ones acting entitled?
“I want my effort to be rewarded” is not an entitled statement to make. It is not elitism. It is not exclusivism. It is not an attempt to insult, disparage, or exclude people entirely.
“I want to see the whole game, even if I don’t feel like working for it” is among the most entitled things a person can say. I don’t think I could fathom a more entitled statement. And, briefly, to wrap up the conversation about video games, I’m fine with Invincibility Mode being included–but there must be a reward for not using it, or a punishment for using it. If a player uses Invincibility Mode, then they should be locked to the Easy Path, and should get the Bad Ending, with the game telling them at the end, “You did it! But to get the true ending, you have to play on a higher difficulty!”
Participation trophies are exactly why we have this attitude. “I want a trophy, but I don’t want to work hard and become the best pitcher.” “I want a trophy, but I don’t want to work hard and run the most yards in a season.” “I want a trophy, but I don’t want to have to practice and hit the most home runs.” Next thing you know, the kid who hit 82 home runs is getting the same trophy as the kid who laid in the grass eating bugs, and ten years later that bug-eating loser is on the Internet saying he wants to be able to complete games without putting in any effort.
But I’m entitled. Because I want to put in effort.
I ate Wendy’s for lunch today. I’m not proud of it, but I was on-site at 9:00 this morning, and I didn’t leave the client’s until after 4:00, so I had to get something to eat. I ordered two cheesburgers and a chicken sandwich, because I always order from the dollar menu. It’s not like the $8 burger tastes any better than the $1 burger–it’s all garbage, disgusting, and terrible for you.
Anyway, I wasn’t paying any attention, and when I opened my bag to leave, there were only two sandwiches inside. So I stayed at the second window a moment. It took more than 2 minutes for the girl to come see what I wanted, though I happened to see that she knew I was there–she was just hoping that she could “pretend” not to see me, and that I would drive away and give up. Finally, though, she came to the window. I’d already checked my receipt, and, sure enough, the chicken sandwich didn’t get rung up.
“I also ordered a chicken sandwich,” I said, “but didn’t get one. So I need–”
The girl looked at the monitor overhead, and then turned back to me, shook her head, and said, “She ain’t charge you for it.”
Um… What? What does that have to do with anything? I didn’t ask whether or no I was charged for something I didn’t get. I said I needed something else. The correct response would have been “I’m sorry about that, we’ll get that ordered right away. You weren’t charged for it, however, so that will be $1.09.”
Instead, I had to say, “I still need it, so… I need to order it.”
It was clear that this whole thing was just a huge inconvenience to her, a hassle. She slinked away from the window, walking slow as fuck, and I simply drove off in exasperation.
Why am I talking about this?
Because these people want $15 an hour.
For that. For slapping that together. For making customers know it’s a hassle for them to fix their mistakes. For being too goddamned lazy to do it right the first time. For not paying attention when people place orders and not ringing up requested items, because I know for a fact I asked for a chicken sandwich. She was just fucking off on her phone or something and wasn’t paying attention.
It’s no wonder this girl was in her 30s and working the drive-thru at a Wendy’s. Anyone whose work ethic is so poor that the best they can muster up when a customer says “This isn’t correct” is a sneering “She ain’t charge you for it” doesn’t deserve to do anything else–and doesn’t even deserve to be employed. If you want to earn $15 an hour, then do $15/hour-quality work.
And that’s entitlement, through and through–fast food workers protesting and marching to have the Minimum Wage raised to $15/hour because they don’t want to college, or because they don’t want to give 110%, get promoted, and become a district manager. I was 18 when I got my first supervisor position. That’s not a fluke–it was because of a strong work ethic. When I lost my job at Domino’s…
I guess I’ll go ahead and tell that story now. Why not.
His name was Tom (that’s not his real name), and he was this black dude who I was friends with. In fact, for about two years he was my best friend. Is there any significance in the fact that he was black? Somewhat–there were pretty major cultural differences, but neither of us had a problem with the racial difference. I said racist things, he said racist things–it was fine, because neither of us took it seriously. How could I be racist? My best friend was a black guy. How could he be racist? His best friend was a white guy. We hung out damned near all the time, smoking weed, doing rolls, listening to A Perfect Circle, eating Xanax occasionally, some tabs here and there, sometimes candy flipping… It was great. I was 18, 19, and 20, so I was exactly the right age for that sort of thing, and it was fantastic. I wouldn’t change a thing.
But he was gay. And I didn’t know that.
At the time, I had absolutely no gaydar. I hadn’t ever even met a gay person, I didn’t think, and I wasn’t looking for or expecting anyone I knew to be gay. He did and said some weird things, and he really liked massaging my shoulders while we were rolling, but… we were rolling. I didn’t think anything about it.
Eventually, though, I realized he was gay, which wasn’t a problem–the problem was that he was in love with me. I tried to let him down gently by just explaining that I’m not into guys, that I’ve never been into guys, and that any rumors he’s heard didn’t have anything to do with me. I stopped hanging out with him, because he wasn’t willing to just let it go, and soon my then-girlfriend and I were living together in a nice little duplex in the city.
She was often bored, so she rode around with me while I took deliveries, and I loved the company. It was awesome. And I was the driver supervisor, so the only person who could bitch was the general manager, and he turned a blind eye to it because it wasn’t causing any problems. We just drove around, listening to music, holding hands, and talking. It was a great way to spend the evenings. And I’d often stop by the house to help her when she got stuck in Final Fantasy VII or some other game. We really did have a great relationship, and that remained true until I left her–and I’ll never understand why I left her, considering, but c’est la vie.
Anyway, I came out of the store one night to take a delivery, and there was Tom, shouting and yelling at her, threatening her, as she sat in the passenger seat, ignoring him. Hell no. I wasn’t going to allow that. I set the deliveries down calmly on the sidewalk and shouted, “Hey! You watch who the fuck you’re talking to. Don’t talk to her like that.”
He was on Xanax, and he attacked. I was ready, and we fought.
I fought like it was a playground fight. I’d been in several fights before, because I know where my lines are, and I don’t let anyone cross them. Threatening my girlfriend? That crosses a line, and I’m not letting someone cross it with impunity. I have other lines, but that was the one that Tom crossed. A guy in high school named Scott had crossed another, as had a guy named Matt.
That was the night I learned the difference between a street fight and a harmless playground fight. If you pull hair on the playground, you’re a bitch, whether you win the fight or not. If you kick a dude in the groin, you’re a bitch, whether you win or not. If you grab someone’s clothes, you’re a bitch, whether you win the fight or not. But on the street, those rules don’t exist. They don’t matter. And I fought like it was a playground fight; I kept it clean and above the belt.
It was over quickly. As soon as he had a fistful of my hair, he snatched down and kneed me in the face twice, followed it with a kick to the ground, and then pulled my shirt over my face, shoved me down, and started kicking me. It did not happen that quickly, and I put up more of a fight than that. It’s not like he did some Bruce Lee shit and ended the fight in four seconds; that’s not what I mean. But those were the actions that mattered. I got hits in, obviously, but they didn’t matter, because he had the trump cards ready.
So take that advice away from this. There are no rules to street fights. There’s no referee to stop the fight if you’re on the ground, so don’t let yourself get into that position. Fight dirty. Fight as though your survival is on the line, because it might be–you never know. Who knows how many kicks to the head I could have taken before I lost consciousness, and who knows if he could have turned his attention to my ex without being stopped under those circumstances? I can say that it was my responsibility that night to protect my ex, since I’d brought her into that situation (though I didn’t have any idea it was coming), and since I was responsible for dude’s feelings (however inadvertently). That mess was on me, so I handled it the right way. And I succeeded in that–he never spoke another word to her, or said anything negative about her again. God knows I didn’t win that fight, but I evidently did enough.
Anyway, the point is that once you’re off the playground and you have to defend yourself, there are no rules. Don’t go to a weapon unless it’s necessary, because then you step into different territory, but… if it is necessary, grab a tire iron. Do what you have to do to protect yourself and the people who need you to protect them. I didn’t. I fought like it was a playground fight, like there were rules and like there was honor. And I left DNA all over the parking lot as a result. And if we had been alone in a back alley, confronted by someone I didn’t even know, then I would have utterly failed that night to do what was my responsibility.
The next fight I was in came when I was 25, because this grown ass 50 year old fucker came charging and screaming at my sister in her house when I was staying there during the brief separation from my soon-to-be-ex-wife. He was her husband’s dad, and there had been tension between them all for months, because he (the father-in-law and mother-in-law) acted like it was their house, when they weren’t even paying rent. My 4 year old nephew had dropped a pie they bought from Wal-Mart, so my sister had thrown it away. Without asking any questions about how it happened, this fat old fucker just came charging, screaming, rampaging, threatening, and banging on her bedroom door while I happened to be in there with her.
Having already had my name written in blood in a distant parking lot, I knew what had to be done, and I dropped that man the same way Tom dropped me. This motherfucker wanted to come and threaten my sister because of an accident her 4 year old son had, blaming her and calling her a bitch for throwing away his pie? Not even asking what happened, just assuming that she spitefully was like “fuck this pie” and threw it away to be a bitch? Nah. I wasn’t having that. And it didn’t create issues between me and her husband, either, because her husband wanted to do the same thing when he heard about it, but he got 7 hours to call off while he was at work. And I totally understand. If my dad went after my girlfriend, I’d drop him, too. But my dad, despite all his failings, would never do that.
It’s not about being tough, being strong, or knowing how to fight. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying I’m tough. You don’t have to be tough to win a fight. You just have to be quick. You only need one opportunity–and so do they. Once they grab your hair, it’s over.
^ Did what he had to do.
Stopped the fight immediately.
Well, I’ve digressed enough, and I’m sorry about all of that. I didn’t have a clear topic in mind when I sat down to write, and this is what happened. If you liked it, though, maybe you’d consider following me on Facebook, to stay up-to-date with all my ramblings–it’s also the best way to communicate with me. Or by following me on Twitter, to stay current on everything that I post. And if you really, really liked it, maybe you’d consider becoming a patron and contributing to the upkeep of the site, and the continued flow of wonderful, unfocused, scattered, incoherent articles like this one. I really want to move to www.shemalediary.com. 😀
Thank you for all your support, for all your help, and for all your time. I guess it’s my hope that giving you insight into myself and into who I am… could help you gain insight into yourself, and into who you are. Thank you to my patrons, and thank you to notathoughtgiven for all that you do and have done. From the bottom of my heart. <3