jacob wrote: ↑
Sun Sep 04, 2022 7:55 am
It's not hard to imagine a society, where some people can afford to spend 10x more than others, for example, one household has $150k in spending power and another half a mile down the road has $15k. If the transition is slow, this level of inequality does not bring out the pitchforks.
What the "in that case, things are so bad that it doesn't matter anyway"-argument(*) ignores is that such a situation doesn't come about instantly. Before there's 10x, there's 2x, then there's 3x ... then 4x ... which may go back to 3x.
10x is close to game over, but if one is prepared for 10x, one can handle 4x with relative ease. As we're seeing now in EU gas pricing.
(*) Similar arguments are made for investing. I might even have made them myself. Again, this ignores that some people don't even rely on investments at all and that in such a situation that demographic would be ahead of the game both internally and externally.
We already live in this society, some people are simply unaware because they don't have any low income people in their social circle and/or they don't talk about it. Many low income people, especially families and the elderly, cannot afford food already so they sign up for food stamps. I have read some estimates that 1 in 8 Americans are already on food stamps. Both the $ amount and the number of Americans on SNAP has continued to increase for years now.
The $ for SNAP has increased so much during the pandemic, in fact, that if I were to sign up my family of six we would get more money for food from food stamps than what we currently spend on food. And if I were low income I could actually do this, since I live in an area where SNAP is not even asset tested.
I'm ashamed to say this, but despite being a millionaire with a six figure income, I have already received a couple thousand dollars in snap benefits during the pandemic because they literally mailed the cards to everyone with children in my area. No questions asked, no signing up, just free money that showed up in the mail(*). I had to lookup to verify that I was legally entitled to this money.
The SNAP program has been quietly expanding for years now, both in terms of enrollment numbers and $ per person enrolled. Your investment dollars are already competing with government money to buy food from the grocery stores. If future crisis continue getting worse the government will continue expanding these programs and eventually the government will win, regardless of how much money you have, because the government literally owns the machine that prints the money.
I don't think the answer to this problem is to keep accumulating financial capital. If this is a real concern the answer is to have a few acres of land, some huge gardens, some animals, knowing how to can and cook and owning a whole lot of guns.
*This money was given to everyone in my area for every child they have because of a free school lunch program for a school district that went remote. The logic was that the students would have received free lunches if they were in school, so because they were remote the money was there to provide food for the children. They used SNAP to distribute the money.