Sunday, January 27, 2013

Origins of the Growth Myth

Origins of the Growth Myth

The Growth myth comes from the Investment myth, the idea that you have to put money somewhere and it has to grow automatically without you having to do anything, automatic creation of wealth, and this indeed works in "Expanding Markets", by making profits by selling more stuff, rapidly selling loads of things, mass production, like the Apple model, saturate the world with smartphones, growing markets, more things sold, more profits, the growth occurs (although you need an entire planet now to achieve the scales of growth money needs to satisfy the greed of investors, their comic book view of the world where things keep on going up forever).

But obviously there are real structural limits to this model no matter what: how many more cars and houses (where the real growth occurs and where the real economy kicks in creating at least some "jobs") can be built (ask Spain...) ? how many more things ? how many things can we even use in the end ? so obviously markets saturate much faster today than they did some decades ago when the great Growth Myth appeared as a law of physics, an invariant, etc. because work today is optimized, "competitive", "way too productive to know what to do with itself" (even including loads of idle time, office politics, and people spinning wheels thanks to technology etc.), way too "competitive" and flexible and so forth (thanks to the myths of all of these concepts imposed on the workers worldwide and the corporations, etc. they have huge excess capacity, huge economies of scale, can rapidly saturate any market with anything, can rapidly put to work millions and achieve a huge output, but by doing so kill off loads of future work for years on end).

So there are real structural limits to Economic Growth no matter how much investors want it, the Standard Economic Model Chants about it (all based on their simple numbers, profits, money must make a profit automatically, they don't look at anything real on the ground, the growth myth is tied into the Investment Myth and they are all oblivious to what really happens on the ground, they all live in a comic book world, etc.). And there are other limits: it is much easier for a society to stagnate, to not grow anymore once it has achieved a given standard of living than to grow no matter what, the society becomes rigid automatically, interests have to protect themselves, close all the doors to change (just look at real estate prices going sky high in all developed countries and look at that as a wall which any new kid starting to work can no longer ever hope to climb and such). And most technological novelties that could be associated with real growth and job creation have been played out, have been done, now there are very few really new job creating technologies left, all has been done, the great growth engine and job creating engines of the 20th century have finished delivering, nothing today really creates many jobs no matter how many times the economists want to blame workers, the laws, the moral faults of anyone and everyone according to a comic book view of the world, etc. Of course, companies will still hire thousands of people and invent all kinds of essentially fake work, making people spin their wheels, like Microsoft programming windows over and over again for 20 years and such, but essentially real work is finishing, is no longer necessary, etc.

Especially when they all talk about jobs: they just talk about the surrounding conditions about the "Jobs", this imaginary myth, this comic book representation of an activity that isn't there anymore, isn't needed, etc. They talk about it abstractly and never really ask what jobs are really needed (what on earth are people going to do for 8 hours a day, what input -> manipulation -> output tasks will they do for 8 hours of day that is worthwhile, that creates a "profit", impossible to imagine, especially as so many things don't produce profits but loses and especially since the value of things today are arbitrarily established by fashion, by random, by random judgements and will powers that have no value at all, random behaviors like everyone buying smartphones, something totally useless, just fun and games with no reality, no real need behind them and such), what can really absorb millions of workers etc. No one ever asks what jobs will there be, what jobs are we talking about, etc: The jobs, creating "jobs", no one even knows what they are talking about, no one ever talks about the contents of words, just imaginary worlds where jobs appear because someone pays less taxes and so forth, never looking at what happens on the ground and such: well jobs are no longer needed, and jobs can be done anywhere in the world, etc. Apple hobby programmers created them 100,000 Apps for Apple for free, without Apple needing to hire them or pay them, this is the reality of "jobs" today (and in fact they also rapidly saturated the Apps space, now all the Apps you could have ever imagined have been produced by themselves, rapidly, things get rapidly saturated in a few years and such), and this too will limit growth, (so you really think the Chinese can keep on buying 10 million cars a year ? in their tight cities without parking space, traffic jams etc, ? no one has a country designed for cars like the USA, the only country that really did grow and from which the growth myth originated from, but the USA was a continent, wide spaces, wide roads, large homes, two car garages and so forth), the mythical economic growth everyone expects to keep on going on, when in all truth, even if you do have growth it will rapidly saturate and end fast, ever longer spans of time with zero growth or recession and a few years of growth rapidly saturating all and ever so.

The growth myth is over, now you have to force growth and production and consumption by giving out free salaries to all, cheap rents, huge public private projects and so forth.

Posts: 1688
Joined: Thu Nov 25, 2004 10:42 am

No comments:

Post a Comment