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

Wall Street

Evolve or Die

Illustration by Genna Wolkon

“Money Is the Root of All Evil”. I remember hearing it as a young boy but always thought, “if everyone is using it, how could it be true?” But now I have come to appreciate the unconscious evil in accumulating the paper mirage we so desperately desire called money. And ironically, the more you have the more you want, and the less you have the more you need. Whoever created it got exactly what they hoped for, a bunch of morons working for it as if it represents the higher vibrations of life like love, courage and energy. We must all realize now that it represents nothing more than a bunch of moronic humans using a simple paper, printed at will by the Wizard of Oz to distinguish life’s value.

I write this editorial from a tropical farm in Hawaii with food growing all around me. On one end, I must admit that Capitalism has treated me quite well. On the other end, I am fully aware that we must move on. We must figure out what we like about Capitalism and what we don’t like. Keep the likes, get rid of the dislikes and move on. Teach Capitalism in history class and no longer in our economic reality. Devise a new plan. A plan that is based on what is best for all the people, because the people will be carrying out the economic plan and the happier and healthier the people, the better our economic reality.

The change will come from each of us putting our individual entrepreneurial talents to work. We all think that the “Economy” is out there and I’m just sitting in my office. But if everyone just busted their hump working entreprenuerally out there, we wouldn’t have that disconnect. We’d understand that our economy is our reality, as opposed to percentages and numbers. The economy and our lives should be one and the same. We tend to allow the economy to be analyzed by government, economist, or financial analysts; yet as active participants in the economy, we are our economic reality. We are looking at it like it’s a school system. Its not a school system to be graded, its our lives, including the health and happiness of all those in our local community. We are all entrepreneurs. We all have something to give and create, yet we are looking to everyone else to do it or change it. The change will not come from government, political activists or wall street. It will come from each and everyone of us.

In our economic system, we the people are ignorantly enabling the system to increase our cost of living. If you have a bank account you are enabling the system. Plenty of the people “Occupying Wall Street” are enabling the financiers through their 401Ks, IRAs, or basic bank accounts. Wall Street and the rest of the financial sector is using that capital savings to invest and pay themselves handsomely in the process. I see nothing wrong with Wall Street acting like a used car salesman. Although they may not have the best reputation, the economy has a lot of used car salesman. We are not only all part of the problem, we are the problem. Each and everyone of us. Whether we are investing in gold that perpetuates strife in South Africa; or passively investing in golf course developments on critical farm land through our pension funds, we are the problem.

The most intelligent thing that Wall Street can do is to evolve itself based on a new decentralized financial system, as opposed to current Wall Street which is centralized. In a decentralized system, the money savings can be invested in the communities that it was originated in. Such a local system would consciously invest to produce both financial returns as well as lower living costs. And Wall Street employees could still be the active investors in that decentralized, local economic system, using many of the skills they have been taught. If Wall Street doesn’t see the writing on the wall that their time is up…that centralized banking has no profits left, they will die with the system. This was proven in the bailout. Just so we all understand, when placing a “bet”, there is no such thing as a hedge. Next time they will not be so LUCKY!

The biggest issue of the government is that they are supporting the enemies of a healthy economic future, because they are subsidizing things that are bad for the economy. We aren’t asking them to save the economy, we are only asking them to stop messing it up by subsidizing things like oil, financial service profits and supporting costly wars.

The greatest economists during the life of Capitalism knew that it would one day come to an end. Shumpeter new it, Say knew it, Hayek knew it and Marx knew it, to name just a few. In a nutshell, they knew as we now know the truth, that eating more of the earth every day does not constitute “economic growth” (i.e. GDP). And here we are, as Shumpeter termed it, creative destruction in action. I say it differently, that “The Great Depression” is finally coming to an end and a new, more efficient system bustling with entrepreneurial creativity to produce lower and lower living costs has been born. The protestors are a sign of things to come. The system is in its final inning. Evolve or Die!

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 »

The Flea Market

A developer once told me that if you do a deal with someone that has fleas, your bound to get fleas. For example, Bear Stearns and AIG have fleas. I understand the fear-based argument for getting fleas, “We have no choice”. But borrowing more money to participate in the Flea Market can’t be our only choice. What if the “Free Markets” posed another choice? What if there was a much better way than borrowing more time and money just to get fleas (and these are big and scary fleas)? Continued »

Will Someone Please Count The Money?

So how much paper money is out there anyway. Does it matter that every time The Wizard of Oz (The Fed/government) decides to bailout a financial institution like Bear Stearns, Lehman, Fannie or Freddie, they have to print more and more money. What is behind this printing of money and how do they do it? Continued »

A Unique Cash Crop

With the deterioration of credit markets around the world, a unique “cash crop only” such as marijuana becomes more valuable or precious. With marijuana’s supply and demand more closely linked as a result of pure competition, the inefficient financial services cost (i.e. inflation) associated with other consumables are thankfully (for potsmokers) avoided. Continued »