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View Diary: An Economy cannot be based on CONSUMPTION (285 comments)

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  •  CONSUMPTION of goods PRODUCED ELSEWHERE (0+ / 0-)

    is my focus.

    even if robots are producing goods, if that production is occurring HERE in the US, you need people top set up and program those robots, to BUILD those robots... those jobs are created HERE.

    If you are consuming goods produced in China it matters little to AMericans how those goods are produced - they are not being produced HERE, value is not added here, wealth is not created HERE.

    Loggers, miners etc add 'value' at the fundamental level.  They take natural resources out of the ground and make them available for use.

    The military does NOT add value in the sense that a soldier is 'overhead' to a society, they have to be paid out of productive enterprises to protect that society - unless of course you are using the military to conquer raw materials you as a nation do not possess - and even that can ten be far from cost effective to society, the value of the resources acquired - or the protection gained being less than the cost of maintaining that military.

    Healthcare that does something - treats a patient - fixes a problem or prevents one is productive but is still a service that cannot be paid for without some other service that is needed or wealth created from production or adding value somewhere.

    •  thoughts (0+ / 0-)

      1. 1/2 of the trade deficit is imported oil! This oil is then used quite inefficiently in the American economy - auto fuel efficiency is horrible when compared to say Europe. The trade deficit is a huge problem but it would be a lot closer to balanced if the US cut its oil use - a relatively easy thing to do - if the will was there. The conversion would also create jobs - a win - win

      2. The US spends 1/2 the world's defense budget. Clearly excessive. The other problem is that a lot of remaining US manufacturing ability is devoted to defense production - tanks, missiles, aircraft, ships.

      3. I was more concerned with health care "insurance".  Unlike a modern economy with a single payer system the US loses at least 20-30% efficiency by using "for profit" health insurance - a wealth destroyer.

      4. Loggers only create value in an economic system that is ecologically non-sustainable. A tree only is only counted as having value when it is cut down. All the "production" done for free by nature has no value. Clearly the "accounting" in our economic system is screwed up. (I say this as an accountant who has always been concerned with the distorted decisions we make in our society because we are not measuring true costs and benefits correctly - this of course also plays into the main points of the diary.)

      "I can live with doubt and uncertainty and not knowing. I think it's much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong". Feynman

      by taonow on Fri Sep 30, 2011 at 04:16:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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