Tuesday, April 30, 2013

How to Discuss Fiat Currency Supply With Luddites, Small Children and Non-Initiates (like Politicians)

Commentary by Roger Erickson

Luddites (and/or petty crooks and sophisticated Control Frauds) are constantly heard discussing fiat currency supply in panicky tones and fearful terms.

It's as though they live in constant fear that we will run out of fiat. (Although I've never heard a definition of how such an abstract condition could ever actually occur. Maybe among the severely ill, depressed or lethargic? Perhaps in patients with advanced Parkinson's Disease - bereft of the neural ability to trigger even volitional thoughts, let alone motor actions?)

Even most of those trying to help Luddites understand fiat currency don't help. The "helpers" often complain that Luddites just won't listen.

Yet what is it that they won't listen to?

Semantics always seems to be a big part of the problem. Please stop sloppily calling net fiat currency creation a "debt," or even a deficit - at least with novices. Without defining terms, semantics lapses into useless sophistry - a perennial tool used by crooks to separate fools from their resources.

Nearly every word in every language has multiple meanings, based on context. That's the price we pay for having lean, dynamic linguistics. Don't argue over it. Just define your terms, and the context they're used in!

Imagine 50 people meeting at the Tower of Babel and discovering to their joy that they all use the same alphabet, script and words! Happy coincidence! They're problems are half over - but only half. Imagine their horror to discover that all 50 assign different meanings to the exact same spoken and written words. Worse, they all have multiple meanings for every shared word, based on the particular context discussed using their particular grammar and phraseology. To be exactly sure of the meaning of a given sentence, you could easily have a 50x50 matrix of possible meaning options to parse! Actually, this situation applies to everyone's daily experiences. So how do humans manage this nightmare scenario? Easily, it turns out. Everyone simply defines their terms whenever initiating a discussion - everyone except priests and economists! Those two professions are wont to chant long strings of incantations mixing in just enough familiar words to be mesmerizing, but perverting them with such a jumble of ambiguity and archaic expressions so as to render them unintelligible for pragmatic use. 

Please. When discussing the topic of fiat currency supply with Luddites - or simply the uninitiated - respect your audience, and take care to talk about bonds, banking reserves, return on coordination, interest rates, inflation or deflation levels, currency supply, Output Gap, jobs, national capabilities ... anything but confusing sophistry.

You don't convince many people to be atheists ONLY by repeatedly telling them that there is no God, there is no devil, there is no hell and that they're NOT going to heaven. The ONLY thing they'll know is what you're telling them not to pay attention to. FAIL! Losing strategy.

So, remind novices entering every topic unfamiliar to them that there are these concepts called semantics, sophistry and linguistic redundancy.  Then stick to talking about concepts that ARE adaptive for that particular conversation. Define terms and context, and then talk about desired outcomes. Nothing more & nothing less.

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