So, for those of you who hadn’t already guessed, there’s no way I’d try to implement any of my economic theories yet. I’m still learning about the subject. (And thanks for all of you who have suggested books, papers, and provided summaries and necessary bits of data.. special shouts out to Steve and James who have both been extra helpful.)

Most of what I’m learning is that I still don’t have the whole picture in my head. For example, one of the criticisms in my mind of the stock market was completely flawed, because I was forgetting that when someone sells stock, the buyer gets the proceeds – the money doesn’t just disappear, it changes hands. It is not true that money sunk in the stock market is not out there in the world making good things happen – because the money doesn’t stop moving when stock is purchased, it goes into the hands of the seller who then goes and does something else with it. (We hope). Even money in a savings account doesn’t necessarily stop moving, because new loans are made against it.

But the question remains – we’re working more efficiently than we ever have, many of us are working harder than ever – two incomes instead of one – and yet many of us are still broke or concave. Why? Is it the additional cost of all of us having instant network access? Is the internet itself that expensive? Is it the increased cost of health care and the fact that a somewhat more toxic world leads to more health complications? Is it the increased cost of education? Or is it the increased cost of interest, and better and more effective advertising that encourages many of us to spend beyond our means? Energy is more or less the same price it’s always been if you adjust for inflation, so it’s not that.

I’d love to hear some thoughts on this.

It’s interesting wrestling with this – I, for now, am doing just fine – but many of my friends seem to be struggling a lot.

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