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Of Two Minds

OfTwoMinds

The Dangerously Diminishing Returns on Monetary and Fiscal Stimulus

January 20, 2021

Allow me to translate the risible claims of Jay Powell and Janet Yellen that their stimulus policies haven’t boosted wealth inequality to the moon: “Let them eat cake.” The euphoria of ever greater monetary and fiscal stimulus overlooks the diminishing returns and higher risks generated by near-exponential increases in stimulus.

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A Few Notes on Deflation/Inflation

January 18, 2021

The consensus is that asset inflation is unstoppable and forever. History begs to differ. Not unsurprisingly, people want a binary option: do we get deflation or inflation? Unfortunately, reality is messy. Broadly speaking, globalization is deflationary as capital seeks the lowest cost labor, parts and materials, the least stringent environmental standards and the most corrupt governance to maximize profits by any means available (in this case, exploitation and corruption).

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Designed To Fail, Failure Guaranteed

January 15, 2021

Yet it still comes as a great surprise to everyone when ‘doing more of what’s failed spectacularly’ ends up collapsing the whole rotten structure. Systems and nations are designed to fail without anyone even noticing: nobody set out to design the current broken system to fail at critical points, but now failure can’t be avoided because the incentive structure has locked in embedded processes that enrich self-serving cartels and insiders at the expense of the nation and its populace.

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Is 2021 an Echo of 1641?

January 13, 2021

If you don’t discern any of these dynamics in the present, what are you choosing not to see? The reason why history rhymes is that humanity is still using Wetware 1.0 and so humans respond to scarcity, abundance and conflicts over them in the same manner. I am struck by similarities between the conflict-torn mid-1600s and the present: global climate change (The Little Ice Age in the 1600s), political upheavals and wars which intertwined civil and imperial conflicts.

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2021: If It Wasn’t For Bad Luck, We Wouldn’t Have No Luck At All

January 10, 2021

If we have indeed begun a sustained “reversal of fortune”, it might be prudent to consider the possibility we’re only in the first inning of a sustained run of back luck. In our self-deluded hubris, we reckon we’ve moved beyond the influence of fortune, a.k.a. Lady Luck: our technologies are so powerful and our monetary policies so godlike that nothing as random as luck could ever crush our limitless expansion.

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The Tyranny Nobody Talks About

January 7, 2021

All the tricks to hide our unaffordable cost structure have reached marginal returns. Reality is about to intrude. There is much talk of tyranny in the political realm, but little is said about the tyrannies in the economic realm, a primary one being the tyranny of high costs: high costs crush the economy from within and enslave those attempting to start enterprises or keep their businesses afloat.

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Contributors

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Mark E. Jeftovic

Mark is the co-founder of easyDNS and the editor-in-chief of #AxisOfEasy. He is the author of Managing Mission Critical Domains & DNS (Packt UK, 2018) and Unassailable: Protect Yourself from Deplatform Attacks & Cancel Culture. 

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Jesse Hirsh

Futurist, researcher and public speaker, Jesse Hirsh has been active in technology and commenting on it across the media for 25 years. His premium newsletter service operates from Metaviews.ca.

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Charles Hugh Smith

Charles Hugh Smith is the author of numerous books and writes from OfTwoMinds.com.