Small silhouette of Doug Wolkon WELCOME TO PLURANOMICS, THE ECONOMICS OF MANY.

Energy

Local Funds Coming Soon!

It sure feels like its high time to mix things up. Federal, State and Municipal governments are failing. Investment Ponzi Schemes are becoming more popular in the digital investment world. And our own Federal Government is using one credit card to pay off another. Isn’t it time we made things a bit simpler, less stressful, more playful, and have work available for all that want it?

What if, we the people, tried something new, brand new. An original plan that not only invested to secure our savings, but also made investments to positively impact the quality of our own lives. What I am suggesting is we organize our investment savings differently.

Please consider the possibilities of an all new Local Investment Fund. A Local Investment Fund will create investment return by acquiring local real estate, as well as building and generating wind and solar energy. The Local Fund would even lend money to a few local businesses that had staying and/or growing power. The Fund would be a community-minded landlord, utility, and bank, all-in-one; formed by local residents to invest in their own Counties and communities. The investments would help stabilize living costs, as well as grow the local economy and generate a strong dividend yield to its local investors.

A Local Investment Fund will be the first of its kind to provide both an offensive and a defensive engine to the local economy. For example, if the local savings and investment community owned the real estate leased by the local coffee shop or brew pub, wouldn’t it think twice about raising their rents? Or said differently, wouldn’t such a rent rise just equate to a more expensive cup of coffee or draft beer for that local resident investor? Wouldn’t the investor be in effect, raising the rent on itself? The same balanced investment characteristics are true for local renewable energy investments as well.

The new strategy would make investments in our lifestyles, in the here and now, contrary to some unknown place and time like in “retirement”. I personally, don’t want to think about the future anymore. I want to invest in the now. To invest to organize our economies with minimal commutes, and educate our communities through the act of sustainability. To invest until we discover a way to lower our energy costs while minimizing our impact on the land that feeds us every day.

Could you imagine the implications of this new way of organizing our economy? Entire Counties would go completely off-the-grid. Local jobs would be humming with billions of dollars being directly pumped into the local markets, businesses and economies. Local innovation would sky-rocket as new ideas would flood the streets. Local tax revenues would also rise, bolstering the desperate city coffers.

Local Funds are the true contrarian play in today’s most finicky global economy. The people of each community have to be the ones to change the direction of their economy by investing in their own land, in their own energy, and in their own people; with their own savings.

Localism: County Style

Just got back to Kauai after a 2-month trip to the U.S. Mainland. I had not been back to the Mainland but for a few weeks over the past year. In any case, there was one idea that I could not drop throughout my 2-month economic study, during which time I visited several Counties, including 12 days in Broward County, FL;  13 days in Palm Beach County, FL;  a few days in Westchester County, NY;  10 days in Fairfield County, CT;  5 days in Suffolk County, MA (Boston);  and 6 days in Jefferson County, CO;  and finally back to Kauai County, HI.

The idea was a Local Investment Fund, with all the power and might of a national or international private equity fund; but funded by the residents of the County and for the benefit of the County. The Fund would be investing in high-yield real estate and renewable energy assets that a local investor could touch and feel as opposed to the digital or virtual investment world where most of us currently have all our investment eggs.

Jungle Cottage

“Counties!”  I first realized it while staying in my jungle cottage within the concrete jungle of Downtown Ft. Lauderdale. Yes, it would be the Counties that would lead America through the Economic Revolution; the Counties, who are unencumbered by the high debts and expenses of our other authorities including towns, cities, states, and federal governments. Huh, Counties. What in the world are you talking about?

Lets use my former, Fairfield County, CT, which maybe the wealthiest County in America – a place where many billionaires and thousands of millionaires call home; Say that the residents (rich and poor) of Fairfield County allocated just 5-10% of their savings towards a local investment fund, which invested in local assets that an investor can touch and feel. This strategy would be executed at a time when real estate is having a fire sale. First, with billions and billions of dollars to invest, such an investment fund would ignite the Fairfield County economy, spurring job growth, creating competition in the energy markets, and replacing out of town or absentee landlords with a locally-minded investor fund.

As I travelled from County to County, my vision only became clearer in my mind. This will be the first of many blog posts on this topic among others, as this Mainland trip certainly got my juices flowing. With bond yields rising and inflation in the air, the time is now for Localism to take hold – County Style!


Erase Everything You Think You Know About Economics

Huh? Can someone please explain to me what all this gibberish means?

How does this explain where my food and energy comes from?

Economics today is based on a language very foreign to the average person’s dialect, myself included. The top Economists in the U.S. aren’t even speaking English. They are so smart that they have discovered an intellectual logarithmic formula to ascertain how you and I will live in this monopoly game we call life, and yet none of us understand what the heck it all means. Continued »

Economic Detox

So what is an Economic Detox? Raw green vegetables consumed through a straw is the food equivalent. Think diarrhea. I know what you are thinking, “yuk”. But as Wall Street has learned the hard way, we have no choice in the matter. Our economy is detoxing whether we like it or not; dropping our excess weight in order to regain our balance; flushing our obese corporate and government costs down the toilet in support of the long-term prosperity of the quicker, lighter, faster and more profitable Mom and Pop entrepreneurs. Continued »

Waking Up to The American Dream

The American Dream once strongly stood for ideal freedom. For as a child in America, we are so fortunately nagged about what we want to be when we grow up: a fireman? an astronaut? or how about an entrepreneur? The American Dream meant career choices for everyone in America!

But somehow our freedom of choice that once so clearly encompassed the American Dream changed. Not sure when or how, but it clearly changed. For as I grew older, the American Dream became all about owning a home. What house, in what neighborhood, with how many bedrooms was all that we seemed to dream about. But then suddenly, the dream became a nightmare. Continued »

Taking Out the Trash

Given the poor state of the economy, isn’t it inevitable that the system for trash removal commonly referred to as “Pay As You Throw” is soon coming to a theater near you? So what happens when our cities and towns charge us individually by weight and/or size for the trash we produce?

Think about how much trash is being imported into your city everyday, only to be removed and sent to never never land the next day. The inefficiency of such an economic system is soon to be confronted. We have no choice. Our cities and towns can no longer afford to just turn the cheek and waste all that energy. Continued »

The Leadership of Money

My parents (Happy Birthday Mom!) used to always say it, “Money doesn’t solve anything”. But it never hit home more than this past week when our leaders proposed a strategy to solve this “Economic Crisis” with more borrowed money? As if borrowing $700B is the answer to all our economic problems. Print another…

Oh yes, and our leaders say it must be “invested” in reinvigorating the establishment of credit. The government itself to go on credit in order to provide the credit, so that it will eventually trickle (yes, trickle) down to provide credit for the “average” American to eat as well. What a lifestyle, with a time gun to our head saying “pay me or else” all the way through! I can’t wait to get that credit flowing again. Continued »