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What price, now?

There was a story I read when I was younger, a short story by Robert Louis Stevenson. The story is about a working class native of Hawaii, Keawe, who buys a strange bottle from a sad, elderly gentleman who credits the bottle with his wealth and fortune, and promises the imp in the bottle will also grant Keawe his every wish and desire.

Of course, there is a catch — the bottle must be sold at a loss, i.e. for less than its owner originally paid, or else it will simply return to him. The currency used in the transaction must also be in coin (not paper currency or check). The bottle may not be thrown or given away. If an owner of the bottle dies without having sold it in the prescribed manner, that person’s soul will burn for eternity in Hell.

The bottle was said to have been brought to Earth by the Devil and first purchased by Prester John for millions of dollars; it was owned by Napoleon and Captain James Cook but each sold it. At the time of the story the price has diminished to eighty dollars, and declines rapidly to a matter of pennies.

The problem here is that as the price approaches a penny, it will become harder and harder to sell the bottle, as the buyer will be in fear of being left holding the bag.

This tale reminds me of our current national debt. As our debt increases, the interest payments will balloon. They can only get so large before default is inevitable. At that point, anyone in possession of a US bond will be stuck with worthless paper. Because of this, the returns for these bonds will have to increase, so as to entice people in taking the risk of buying them, which will make the interest payments higher, thus making the end that much closer.

5 replies on “What price, now?”

America is dead, we just haven’t realized/admitted it, yet. Soon, like within months, the walls will come tumbling down. Be ready.

Dead Country Walking.

Hopefully, after the infarction there’s a crack Political Doctor available to perform a resurrection, but a lot more likely it’ll be a Victor Frankenstein who makes it much worse.

Strap in and hang on.

Ponzi schemes like socialism (but I repeat myself) always requires a greater fool to be the bag holder.

Unless you’re planning on stopping eating next year OR you somehow think there will be more and cheaper food next year (PLEASE show your work) almost everything in Walmart’s dry good section will last for over two years. Even more if kept in a cool dark dry place.

Buy what you eat and use. First in first out so you don’t find decrepit stock behind the newer stuff.

Food, OTC meds, TP and all that are nice, just remember OPSEC so the hungry don’t mistake YOU for a charity Walmart in a nasty neighborhood.

Trusted friends, skills, tools, seeds and stored food and safe water makes you wealthy when ALL the electronic digits cannot buy a single loaf of bread.

And remember that during the Great Depression the US Gov used the law to force people into selling their Gold and then repriced gold so they took a 20% haircut in real buying power.

Oh, and debts and taxes WERE Collected as folks lost their homes and farms on the courthouse steps to bankers guarded by Sheriffs.

There is a reason that that murderous duo Bonnie and Clyde were celebrated by people as they were “Sticking it to the Man”.

> …Anyone in possession of a US bond will be stuck with worthless paper.

And don’t forget that US dollars are not much different than bonds that don’t appreciate.

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