mercoledì, novembre 22, 2006

But what it can't get I can't use

Yesterday was stupid and boring until I got out of work and discovered what a rather staggering rate of compound interest has already done to my retirement 'savings'. How funny that money is such a feel-good thing when it's there or there's the prospect of more!

Our almost imaginary economic system - so abstract, so based on things we usually neither know nor understand - has become so deeply ingrained into our very bones that we can associate numbers on a statement with our basic well-being and not even blink when the news media casually shits on the communist organization of goods as intrinsically flawed without considering we've never had a proper communist system - just a bunch of starving Russians and Chinese et cetera taking up arms and doing what they could with what they'd got. And that may well be the longest sentence I've ever written. Brontësque in its monstrosity.

My point is, I think England should go communist so the rest of us can watch what happens. Wasn't that supposed to happen before the gentle left co-opted the labour movement back whenever?

I'm getting excited for my birthday. Besides celebrations spread out over the weekend, of course I'm excited about presents. Like a camera. Oh boy. And then there's the opera. I love birthdays. Speaking of which, today is Miss G's birthday - she's in New York; does anyone have her address there?

11 commenti:

Melbine ha detto...

I love getting those RRSP statements!

I had no idea England might have remotely been on the verge of going communist. I can't see them being able to do it very successfully, but I can't really explain why..

I also remembered it was Miss G's birthday today. I don't have her address in NY, just her email.

You're so lucky to have a weekend birthday - yay! You have been anticipating the opera for almost a year now, yes?

Anonimo ha detto...

I think it would be next to impossible for England to go communist now - they are too cozy with the Americans and big daddy wouldn't approve. Communism is still a bad word down there.

Birthday weekends are great. The dude's birthday was last weekend and I spoiled him all weekend even though we had to cancel his party because he had caught a cold from his students. I'm sure Figaro will spoil you all weekend as well.

Mistress La Spliffe ha detto...

I was being silly. England isn't going communist. But back in the day everybody thought it would. Marx and Engels came up with their theories in England because of how crap everything was there for working people - it was a really industrialized sort of body of thought, and very very English.

Anyways, soon being cozy with Americans won't mean much for long. Things are deteriorating every day in terms of American influence. Too much incompetent economic leadership for too long and too many foreign entanglements in the wrong places. Le declin de l'empire americain, in fact. I'm not happy about it, but there you are.

Anonimo ha detto...

I am looking forward to Friday! Mr N. has been planning the menu since last weekend, hahaha.

Mistress La Spliffe ha detto...

I'm excited about the menu because he purposefully wouldn't tell me what it was! Just to bring red wine.

Jiri ha detto...

I always think that communism needs a force to keep the population from engaging in activities that are not communist. But I guess things really did suck in much of Western Europe back in the day, and it's surprising that noone there besides the French tried to go that way.

Is our economic system that abstract? The monetary system is - I still don't really understand how currency doesn't have to be backed by anyting - but our economic system is the same one that the people who planted the plants first used.

Mistress La Spliffe ha detto...

I think it's pretty abstract. If you think about mutual funds and pension plans and things, most people have no fucking idea what their assets are being invested in or even the effect compound interest has on their little nest egg.

The monetary system, I think, really has taken over most of our economic system to the degree that money seems to represent less and less a tool to make bartering simple in a mercantile society, and has become more and more abstract.

Maybe I'm just thinking so much about this because of North Americans' habit of deficit spending - credit cards, home equity, double mortgages with wildly variable rates and stuff - getting into financial shit they've got no idea about. I heard Japan has a much better savings rate. Maybe I'd feel differently about it if I was there.

Jiri ha detto...

Yeah... I see what you mean. The still think that the system itself is simple. Say, there's nothing complicated about lending on interest. But we totally do some very abstract things with money, and it's true that most people - me included - don't know how many of those things really work.

Probably everyone on the planet has better savings rate that North Americans. My personal savings rate was way better when I lived in Canada than it is now in Japan though. Maybe that's why nobody here wants to give me a credit card...

Mistress La Spliffe ha detto...

Oh, I see what you mean. Yeah, the system should be simple but people are silly and trust other people too much.

Frankly if I had my way I'd just bury a cache of gold under my bed.

Melbine ha detto...

I almost fell over when my mother told me that her parents never had credit cards, they paid for everything with their own money. Credit cards and the such have completely changed the way our generation acts with money. Really, it's changed everything!

I read recently that when Korea introduced easily available credit in 1999 that it created huge problems!

Mistress La Spliffe ha detto...

Oh, I hearda about that. How did they fix it? Did banks start giving low-interest loans to clear it up, or something?