The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

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Re: The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

Postby aardvark_admin » Thu Sep 03, 2020 1:39 pm

Typical Stuff... the headline says "no need to worry" but the pictures paint a different story :-/
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Re: The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

Postby Perry » Thu Sep 03, 2020 2:37 pm

Malcolm wrote:The old avocado toast argument. The fact is that these luxuries cost very little comparatively, e.g Netflix is only $15-20 a month depending on your plan, so if you gave up Netflix for 1000 months you would have $20k for a house deposit, except that you probably need closer to $50k in the current market. Chicken is probably one of the cheapest meats to currently buy. Also have you tried to get something repaired since the 1980s? Assuming you can find a service tech willing to do it, the cost will be significantly more than a replacement item and you will still be left with an older item which could fail again soon.

Why would anyone eat old avocados?

Many 'luxuries' daily or weekly all add up. A service tech keeps NZ working and repairable stuff out of the waste stream. It also reduces the demand for more imports. Back when NZ had foreign exchange controls, we had almost no international debt and one of the highest living standards in the world. (I recall the national horror when there were more than two murders in one year!) The NZ pound was worth more than two USA dollars. Dad took a "cut lunch" to work. Cheques or cash were normal. There were few tea rooms and no dashing out for a flat white and a blueberry muffin at smoko. Or a subway for lunch. Lay-by was common, hire-purchase limited and controlled. Schools had bike sheds, rather than pupil's car parks. Unemployment was measured in hundreds, rather than tens of thousands.

I.e. NZ lived within its means and did well as a consequence.

That didn't suit the lenders, so Pandora's box was opened. The rest is a history of debt and interest servitude and a general societal decline.
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Re: The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

Postby aardvark_admin » Thu Sep 03, 2020 2:40 pm

And, as we've pondered before, was it just coincidence that the decline in that utopia began about the same time that TV was launched in NZ?

Just sayin :-)
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Re: The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

Postby Perry » Thu Sep 03, 2020 6:39 pm

Bruce wrote:And, as we've pondered before, was it just coincidence that the decline in that utopia began about the same time that TV was launched in NZ?

For anyone who's read up a little on the history of advertising - especially Sigmund Freud's nephew, arch-propagandist Edward Bernays - no surprise at all.

But it was more than that and the 'suckering' of the terminally gullible. (They breed, too, and the genes pass on down.)

Buying things you don't need, with money you don't have, to impress people you don't like. And pay interest on that, too.

How many people know the name, Mr Micawber?
Annual income twenty thousand dollars, annual expenditure nineteen hundred and ninety-nine dollars, result happiness.

Annual income twenty thousand dollars, annual expenditure twenty thousand and one dollars, result misery.

There is so much poignant innuendo to the expression buy now - pay later.
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Re: The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

Postby Malcolm » Fri Sep 04, 2020 10:58 am

Perry wrote:
Malcolm wrote:The old avocado toast argument. The fact is that these luxuries cost very little comparatively, e.g Netflix is only $15-20 a month depending on your plan, so if you gave up Netflix for 1000 months you would have $20k for a house deposit, except that you probably need closer to $50k in the current market. Chicken is probably one of the cheapest meats to currently buy. Also have you tried to get something repaired since the 1980s? Assuming you can find a service tech willing to do it, the cost will be significantly more than a replacement item and you will still be left with an older item which could fail again soon.

Why would anyone eat old avocados?

Many 'luxuries' daily or weekly all add up. A service tech keeps NZ working and repairable stuff out of the waste stream. It also reduces the demand for more imports. Back when NZ had foreign exchange controls, we had almost no international debt and one of the highest living standards in the world. (I recall the national horror when there were more than two murders in one year!) The NZ pound was worth more than two USA dollars. Dad took a "cut lunch" to work. Cheques or cash were normal. There were few tea rooms and no dashing out for a flat white and a blueberry muffin at smoko. Or a subway for lunch. Lay-by was common, hire-purchase limited and controlled. Schools had bike sheds, rather than pupil's car parks. Unemployment was measured in hundreds, rather than tens of thousands.

I.e. NZ lived within its means and did well as a consequence.

That didn't suit the lenders, so Pandora's box was opened. The rest is a history of debt and interest servitude and a general societal decline.


This completely ignores the fact that not just locally but globally productivity has increased steadily, for some reason in the late 1970s wages failed to keep up. Prior to about 1975 wages and productivity tracked fairly close to each other in a trend upwards, but then average wages flattened off. It gets even worse when broken down by bracket. With CEOs and owner compensation keeping tack with productivity but middle and lower income lagged well behind. In fact the lowest ones have less comparative spending power now than in 1980. At the same time certain costs have skyrocketed compared to others. E.G housing, while some luxuries have become more affordable. People haven't fundamentally changed, but the socio-economic reality of the world has changed since then.
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Re: The still after the storm (3 Sep, 2020)

Postby Perry » Fri Sep 04, 2020 3:08 pm

Malcolm wrote:This completely ignores the fact that not just locally but globally productivity has increased steadily . . .

Pro rata on a population increase over the same period?
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