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This column contains everything there is to know about economics. Hereafter it will be possible to shut down university deprtments and stop talking about Keynes and the Austrian School, to the great relief of mankind. In gratitude you can send me your childrens’college funds.

In 1850 people all lived on farms and grew food, which they ate. Eating was really important to them. They liked eating. There was in 1850 tremendous demand for refrigerators and cars, but people didn’t know they wanted these things because they hadn’t been invented. Anyway, they didn’t have any money to buy them with.

Yet the demand was there, crouched to spring. Much demand for almost everything, but little supply.

Then farming automated and people all went to cities to work in factories to make refrigerators and cars, which had been invented. These weren’t as important as food, but they were pretty important. People had a little money now, and bought them. You don’t need advertising to sell what people actually want.

There was lots of demand and getting to be pretty good supply.

Soon the factories were spitting out more than anyone could use of everything that anyone could reasonably want. A family needs only so many refrigerators. Here we encounter the first crucial problem of the modern economy: too much supply and not enough demand.

Yet the factories had to make stuff so people would have jobs, and the people had to buy the stuff so they could keep having factories. Economics is thus the study of the squirrel wheel.

To keep people working and buying, the economy began making things that nobody really needed or would think to want, such as nail salons, electronic gadgets, and designer jeans. To get people to buy these things, the supply of demand had to increase. Advertising came about to manufacture demand for things that, without advertising, no one would buy. Consequently society now depends for existence on pop-ups, singing commercials at twenty minutes to the hour on television, billboards, and Google ads. Advertising thus became more important to the economy than anything it advertised.


Labor followed a similar pattern. When factories came, they needed lots of people to make the refrigerators and cars. Most work involved digging holes or lifting heavy objects, so the workers didn’t have to be smart or know much.


Then came the rolling disaster that economists don’t seem to have anticipated: automation. As factories produced the increasingly trivial goods that supported the economy, they needed fewer and fewer workers to make the trivial goods. This raised two questions: Who was going to buy the $450 running shoes that nobody needed except that advertising told them they did, and how were the workers who didn’t have work making them any longer going to get money to buy them? Or to eat?

It became obvious, except to economists, that automation could do just about everything people were paid to do. Just now, someone has invented a burger-maker machine that will presumably replace hundreds of thousands of burger-flippers who aren’t needed anywhere else. Self-driving vehicles approach practicality, and will first replace long-haul truckers and then cabbies and delivery truck drivers. Much worse is in the offing. Here is the second crucial problem of modern economics: Where to put unnecessry people?

The Theory of Increasing Uselessness

A search continues, long quietly underway but now intensified, for ways to keep off the work force people for whom there is no work, or no real work. These are not necessarily lazy, shiftless, or parasitic. They just don’t have anything to do.

Child-labor laws and requirements that people finish high school helped diminish the labor force. Then society told the young that they all needed to go to college, when most of them didn’t, and since the universities served chiefly as holding pens, the quality of education dropped. Universities did however employ professors and administrators. Here was another example of selling at high price something that no one really needed, namely the appearance of education.

Swollen bureaucracies popped up to provide the appearance of work while the purported workers did little that would not better have been left undone. Military enterprise soaked up more people doing nothing that should be done. Exotic fighter planes that would never do anything to justify their existence but bomb remote goat-herds absorbed thousands of engineers and hundreds of billions of dollars. The engineers could as well have been paid for digging holes and filling them in, but this was judged unduly candid.

Finally even these measures ceased to be enough. College graduates began living with their parents and lining up for jobs a Starbucks because there was no need for them anywhere else. Resort was had to outright charity. Thus food stamps, Section Eight housing, free lunches at school, AFDC, and all the other disbursements of free money. Those receiving the free money no longer had any incentive to work even if the opportunity offered. In the cities generation after generation now lived on charity, largely illiterate and in what is never called custodial care. They are simply unnecessary. There is nothing for them to do. So they don’t do anything.


In America this is usually a state of mind rather than an economic condition. The allegedly poor have all their time free, a luxury not available to the indentured drones who pay for this leisure. The poor have enough to eat—gobbling Cheetos instead of real food is their choice—and they have access to libraries and parks and museums. Graduate students at the same economic level used to live a life of books, music, illicit substances, and good conversation. The recipients of charity are not economically poor, but mentally empty.

Cognitive Stratification


Meanwhile an elaborate and highly effective system developed for sucking the very bright young from every cranny in the country and sending them to the remaining good universities: SATs, GREs, National Merit, ACT, and suchlike. Here the top two percent in intelligence partied, married, and made babies, not always in that order, and went into brain-intensive trades like Silicon Valley, i-banking, and medicine. As the middle class sank into the lower-middle, the brain babies increasingly formed a thin layer of dominant if not always morally impressive intellects at the top of society.

Increasingly aware of each other thanks to list-serves and web sites for the very smart, they foregathered internationally with their own kind, eschewing contact with the surrounding sea of slugs. (I will bet you are not reading this on a site where the comments are misspelled.) They prospered. Nobody else did. The battle lines were being drawn. Which brings us to:

The Minimum Wage

Conservatives harbor the curious notion that people will work if they don’t have to. This is because to them work, real actual work, is an abstraction with which they have no familiarity. Real work is usually unpleasant or boring. But to economic theorists, work means being a cardiac surgeon, talking head, columnist, or CEO. Thus they say that if we eliminate the minimum wage, black youth (these are always given as examples) will rush to labor for a dollar an hour, learn the trade, rise, and become CEOs. Horatio Alger and all that.

This implies two things: First, that anyone in his right mind would spend eight hours a day flipping burgers for a pittance when he could live on charity in leisure at the same standard, and second, that any employer in his right mind would want to hire semi-literates with bad work habits when, given our current endemic unemployment, he has a choice of much more educated and dependable workers.

In short, if the minimum wage were abolished, the bottom rungs of society would remain unemployed because their labor isn’t worth enough for them to live on, or worth anything at all. The bottom rungs creep upward. When almost everybody is unemployed, we will have to institute communism manque: “To each according to his needs and, from each, nothing much.

There you have it, all of economics in a small package. Buy survival gear.

(Republished from Fred on Everything by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Economics • Tags: Unemployment 
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  1. Sunbeam says:


    But you are still going to have people picking you apart.

    That said, this particular problem is inevitable and clearly visible coming (even though as you argue the process has been ongoing for a while).

    You never get anything by itself. It’s a big world and lots of things happen.

    This problem has nothing to do with politics, liberalism, conservatism, HBD, eugenics, wars, welfare, anything like that.

    Though it will influence them all of course.

    But if we were some kind of zero welfare state or something, this problem would still exist and will continue to become more important.

    And there is absolutely no way around it. I’m not comfortable with the labels people put on themselves and things anymore. As you said, there is nothing for “these people” to do. I don’t think that Libertarians or Conservatives have the foggiest notion of what that actually means.

    And the ranks and types of people who become people for whom “there is nothing to do” is growing year by year. Self driving vehicles are going to be a big whammy to a whole lot of people who don’t understand the slightest thing about any of this. Whether that is 5, 10, or 20 years from now.

    I remember 1995 pretty well. It wasn’t that long ago.

  2. KA says:

    Brilliant . How do you undo it?

  3. With our economy of debt peonage, even free isn’t as affordable. Tell him what he’s won Bob!

    “When the prize is merchandise or travel – a washer/dryer, a new car, a cruise – it’s a different ball game. Just ask Andrea Schwartz, who is warning unsuspecting game show contestants.

    Last year, Schwartz was thrilled to win $33,000 in prizes on TPIR. The list of goodies included a pool table, a shuffleboard table, and a red Mazda2. After the show, she was whisked backstage for a dose of reality – the tax issues.”

    “Modernity has replaced ethics with legalese.”
    Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder (2012)

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  4. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I’ve read the Unabombers manifest years ago….

  5. SeanK says:

    Fred manages to take a swipe at black people in this article. Yet he is correct; the millions of “those people” who occupy the inner cities neither contribute or offer anything to society.

    • Replies: @Ace
    , @E. Rekshun
  6. “According to Momentum Machines, making burgers costs US$9 billion a year in wages in the United States alone. ”

    If you factor in lost wages from people who were sickened by low wage burger makers these costs must be higher. Having sick poor people as cooks isn’t appealing to the millenials. Fast food sales are down and it’s yet to be seen if robots making fast food faster will save the industry. Take fries that robots peel saving billions in labor. The out of work burger makers can’t switch to peeling spuds to gain employment and robotic fryers could displace more fast food cooks. In other words, fast food is a dead end career choice. It’s a race to the bottom.

  7. Old style watt-hour meters (the non-electronic kind with the flat spinning disk) have a magnet that induces eddy currents on the disk to provide a load or resistance to the motor. Likewise, I think welfare needs some sort of resistance in order to be doled out. There should be some universal “default” job, available to everyone. Perhaps $10 per mile walked on a treadmill for the able bodied, and other jobs tailored to those with specific handicaps. Nobody gets free money. Everybody has to “work” for it, even if the only purpose of the work is to provide some sort of “resistance”. If nothing else this would provide incentive to get a real job.

  8. Rumpole57 says:

    Player Piano, by Kurt Vonnegut, together with the Robot Novels, by Issac Asimov, anticipated this situation. Asimov thought that the human race would simply shrivel and die off under extreme automation, and this appears to be happening in the most developed parts of the world-declining birth rates. Why do we need survival gear?

    • Replies: @pyrrhus
  9. […] an hour, learn the trade, rise, and become CEOs. Horatio Alger and all that.    More here, ======================= Furthermore, the notion that 2°C of warming is a “safe” limit is […]

  10. SFG says:

    Small nitpick: the overclass generally does keep the order right when partying, marrying, and making babies. Otherwise you fall in status.

    Otherwise, good job. 😉

  11. Lovely article – this is all down to Intellectuak Property, a fictitious concept that has turned capitalism to corporatism.

  12. Ace says:

    Are black people off limits?

  13. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    At the sandwich shop I noticed they had 3-4 bicycle delivery guys just standing around, waiting for some orders to come in. They were all in their 20’s. Jobs like that are more suited for high school youth. It seemed these guys were all underemployed. One downwardly mobile middle-aged woman I talked to, who had degrees, couldn’t even get a job at the chain coffee shop. There’s a huge number of people working way below their capability out there. Yet the loudspeakers on every corner keep announcing that employment levels are going up and up and everything is rosy.
    Apparently about half the population has become redundant so the approach seems to be to lock up the bad ones, shove welfare and birth control at the rest.

  14. A system under stress will react in a direction to relieve the stress – Le Chatelier’s Principal.

    Wars that reduce the population of the world would work. I expect most of the killing to be done with bio-weapons.

    The man said, “Buy Survival gear.” Good advice for the younger folks, anyway. Old farts like me needn’t bother too much, this will take decades to play out, and the real killing is probably a couple of decades away.

    • Replies: @Hal
  15. I once heard someone say we need a permanent underclass that would be required to do society’s undesirable jobs in order to survive. It’s a horrible thought, but it may be the only way for an advanced civilization to flourish. Liberalism and its socialist offshoots may, indeed, be false gods.

    • Replies: @The Anti-Gnostic
  16. David says:

    Is that Mary Poppins in the middle of the line? If she can’t find work, I myself could use a good nanny.

  17. Another great article by this author!


  18. Fredomics!

    yea verily
    it is written

    And there was the upper 2% that had real jobs.
    The rest were cast into the abyss called working retail.
    No one suffered, no one was too bored
    For the Lord provided them with porn and cheetos

    yes verily
    it is written

    But the crumb covered masses prayed for deliverance
    Lord! Give me More!
    For I have run out of forbidden holes
    And Chester Cheeto is a false God
    It isn’t easy being cheesy
    Are no words to live by

    And the Lord heard their prayers
    And gave man scientists
    Who with great effort and half a century of time
    Discovered the genetic architecture of intelligence
    An lo the trumpets sounded
    And the next generation of dumbshits were given mind glasses

    Now all could be in the upper 2%!
    And life was rosy and good for a few generations
    Now man flew to the heavens as gardeners of dead worlds
    Now a new revolution was sprung
    Once evolution became a planned flight
    Rather than a slow crawl pushed by cruelty

    But soon another lower 98% was formed
    Left behind with weirder porn and a 1000 kinds of Cheetos

    yea verily
    it is written

    • Replies: @Sunbeam
  19. Biff says:

    I need a left nostril inhaler and I need it now

  20. LarryS says:

    Never fear! Rush Limbaugh is handing out boot straps for free.

  21. rod1963 says:

    Talk about getting to the point, you did in it spades.

    Western society has painted itself into a corner, more clever than bright they’ve forgotten that the tools they are using are a means not a end. Throwing people out of work by the millions permanently and moving the lowest rungs of the ladder ever upwards isn’t progress, it the death of society and the current order.

    Yeah the ever grinning, happy talk pump monkeys on TV say otherwise, but to anyone who is not part of the professional class knows that they are full of s**t. And of course since the professional class is happy and content they don’t see the wheels coming off the system and wonder why lower classes are disgruntled.

    Things are going to get very interesting once the wheels come off, which shouldn’t be too long now.

  22. peterike says:

    Needs a section on immigration. A big section.

    • Replies: @unit472
  23. @Epaminondas

    You’re missing the point by a very long country mile. The undesirable jobs will be done by robots, and a large sector of the population will simply have no marketable skill to offer, not even for emptying bedpans or whipping up your half-caff soy latte with one Splenda.

    The current solution seems to be make them go to school until at least age 16, then feed them welfare and plop them down in front of a TV. But they keep breeding more net eaters, and the will and capacity to feed all of them is running out. So when that limit is reached, what happens then?

    Like somebody else said, just be thankful the day of reckoning appears to be at least a few decades off.

  24. Remember that automation was promoted with tax breaks for buying machinery, but not for employing workers. That means government policy is partly to blame for high unemployment.

    • Replies: @The Anti-Gnostic
  25. Hal says:
    @another fred

    Wars that reduce the population of the world would work. I expect most of the killing to be done with bio-weapons.

    Managed properly, and televised, would provide more entertainment than the 6 o’clock news.

  26. @Grace Jones

    Wrong. Automation is incentivized by workplace mandates which make surly, unreliable, marginally-skilled workers too expensive to employ.

    So is immigrant employment, btw.

    • Replies: @grey enlightenment
  27. I’ve become more and more interested in the concept of Guaranteed Basic Income (GBI). Every adult citizen in America get’s say $18,000 a year. Ludicrous sure! But some folks have run the numbers and it may be able to be done. First you have to eliminate every welfare program known to the USA; section 8 housing, food stamps etc. Minimum wage? gone, it’s an illusion anyway. The middle class get the $ too, but eliminated are all the current tax deductions, the standard deduction and or itemization like mortgage interest, retirement accounts and on an on. The rich, the press is constantly harping on income inequity, so out goes there biggest tax loop hole, creating charitable foundations which gets them out both capital gains and estate taxes, every heard of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Gone they pay the tax, if they want be charitable out of the goodness of there heart so be it, but let’s see them do it without a tax incentive.

    I know, I know folks well pool there money for housing and sit around get high and smoke meth all day. But they already do that. Regarding the minimum wage, this actually turns the tables on the McDonald’s of the world. They now have to come up with a wage that is enough incentive to get people off there butt’s and into work, think about it.

    The biggest issue I have is how to in-cent the useless and near useless not to breed.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  28. unit472 says:

    Indeed. Immigrants seem to find work even if it is illegal. Convenience stores that double as black markets for food stamp fraud, tobacco tax evasion, coupon fraud or even trading in stolen goods affords many a Muslim immigrant a comfortable living. Of course, many illegal immigrants, unable to avail themselves of our welfare benefits ( unless they have children) do the work that our own ‘poor’ do not have to do because of those very same welfare benefits. Stoop labor is not very appealing as compared to sitting on the sofa eating cheetos and watching TV.

    The problem Fredonomics doesn’t address is, that in order to provide these welfare benefits, we are now routinely borrowing between $500 billion and $1 trillion dollars per year. Only through innovative monetary policies have we been able to keep this debt mountain from having an interest rate avalanche and burying us. Perhaps that is what the admonition to buy ‘survival gear’ was about.

  29. “Liberals say we should end employment discrimination. I say we should end employment. Conservatives support right-to-work laws. Following Karl Marx’s wayward son-in-law Paul Lafargue I support the right to be lazy. Leftists favor full employment. Like the surrealists — except that I’m not kidding — I favor full *un*employment. Trotskyists agitate for permanent revolution. I agitate for permanent revelry. But if all the ideologues (as they do) advocate work — and not only because they plan to make other people do theirs — they are strangely reluctant to say so. They will carry on endlessly about wages, hours, working conditions, exploitation, productivity, profitability. They’ll gladly talk about anything but work itself. These experts who offer to do our thinking for us rarely share their conclusions about work, for all its saliency in the lives of all of us. Among themselves they quibble over the details. Unions and management agree that we ought to sell the time of our lives in exchange for survival, although they haggle over the price. Marxists think we should be bossed by bureaucrats. Libertarians think we should be bossed by businessmen. Feminists don’t care which form bossing takes so long as the bosses are women. Clearly these ideology-mongers have serious differences over how to divvy up the spoils of power. ”

    Hard work can be done by some machine. Washing for example.

  30. I always like it when somebody articulate and widely read expounds the thoughts I’ve been having on a particular subject for decades.

    Thank you Fred.

  31. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @George Taylor

    Here in Germany discussion is equal, with the same Ideas.

    But where is the answer to the following question?
    If you give everybody a monthly salary without compensation in work, how will you handle the (imho inevitable) inflation?

    The first month 300 million people given 1500 USD injects 4.5 billion USD in the consumer market (except you will rob this money elsewhere). It reaches the supermarket checkout counter at the very first day which is very different to money in one of the many investment bubbles.

    This will drive prices until this injection is compensated. You earn nothing, except a weaker currency.

  32. Old fogey says:

    Fred was too kind to the Feminists who encouraged masses of women to enter the work force a few decades ago. When I first heard about the Feminists, I thought they were encouraging women and girls to become more feminine, but it turned out that they wanted women to become more like men. Adding millions of women to the workforce lowered men’s wages, of course, and left people struggling to find someone to take care of small children, but somehow or other it is still considered a “good thing.” A woman myself, I think it is foolish to teach young women that raising children well, tending a garden, and decorating and maintaining a home is less creative than routine office work. It is also foolish to think of men and women as competitors, when our interests and our natures are clearly complementary.

    Now that we check ourselves out at the supermarket while encouraging “undocumented” low-skilled people from all over the world to come to this country whether there are jobs for them or not, we really should not be surprised to find that we have unemployed American citizens to worry about.

    • Replies: @Another Canadian
  33. Charles Murray and others agree that the the economy and society is and will continue to be stratified by IQ, as what some could call Social Darwinism 2.0 or the high-IQ aristocracy

    There are few good solutions- or few solutions that are politically palatable.

    • Replies: @Sunbeam
    , @rod1963
  34. @The Anti-Gnostic

    agree. If a company can get a bigger profit margin on its widgets by automating or outsourcing, it will do so (in accordance to elementary micro economic assumptions).

  35. @Cloudswrest

    mandated exercise would probably lower healthcare costs by reducing obesity among the sedentary, unemployed population. If we have to have a growing welfare state, it should not be pleasant at is already is.

  36. “At present most work is useless or worse and we should simply get rid of it. On the other hand — and I think this the crux of the matter and the revolutionary new departure — we have to take what useful work remains and transform it into a pleasing variety of game-like and craft-like pastimes, indistinguishable from other pleasurable pastimes, except that they happen to yield useful end-products. Surely that shouldn’t make them *less* enticing to do. Then all the artificial barriers of power and property could come down. Creation could become recreation. And we could all stop being afraid of each other…I don’t suggest that most work is salvageable in this way. But then most work isn’t worth trying to save. Only a small and diminishing fraction of work serves any useful purpose independent of the defense and reproduction of the work-system and its political and legal appendages. Twenty years ago, Paul and Percival Goodman estimated that just five percent of the work then being done — presumably the figure, if accurate, is lower now — would satisfy our minimal needs for food, clothing, and shelter. Theirs was only an educated guess but the main point is quite clear: directly or indirectly, most work serves the unproductive purposes of commerce or social control. Right off the bat we can liberate tens of millions of salesmen, soldiers, managers, cops, stockbrokers, clergymen, bankers, lawyers, teachers, landlords, security guards, ad-men and everyone who works for them. There is a snowball effect since every time you idle some bigshot you liberate his flunkeys and underlings also. Thus the economy *implodes*.”

    People can make thousands of Boston snowmen. Moving the snow can be recreation.

  37. @Old fogey

    A woman myself, I think it is foolish to teach young women that raising children well, tending a garden, and decorating and maintaining a home is less creative than routine office work. It is also foolish to think of men and women as competitors, when our interests and our natures are clearly complementary.

    Uncommon wisdom is often found in routine places.

  38. Sunbeam says:
    @Dave Chamberlin

    I congratulate you, this was as the kids put it “awesome.”

    “But the crumb covered masses prayed for deliverance
    Lord! Give me More!
    For I have run out of forbidden holes
    And Chester Cheeto is a false God
    It isn’t easy being cheesy
    Are no words to live by”

    I would absolutely love if this were made into a song and put on youtube.

    No idea if this would be ironic, or like the scene in the Vonnegut novel when the character was going to flip off god, then touch a crystal of Ice-9 to his tongue to make a statue that lasted forever.

  39. One downwardly mobile middle-aged woman I talked to, who had degrees, couldn’t even get a job at the chain coffee shop.

    Not singular, plural! That could mean six figure debt from some schools.

  40. Sunbeam says:
    @grey enlightenment

    “Charles Murray and others agree that the the economy and society is and will continue to be stratified by IQ, as what some could call Social Darwinism 2.0 or the high-IQ aristocracy”

    There’s narcissism and over-rating your own abilities. But be honest. Other than the advances coming out of the universities, and implemented by select industries (many of whom increasingly are foreign concerns), are you really that impressed by the “2%?”

    Personally I’m not impressed by Wall Street, any think tank in DC, any talking head on TV, any one (with a few exceptions) I’ve seen from elite colleges, foreign policy gurus, our intelligence agencies, the military, entrepeneurs…

    Instead, when I hear them talk, I think “How did you get where you are? You are as dumb as a bag of rocks.”

    I mean take Wall Street. Let me capture the regulators, have access to all the information, set key interest rates (the Libor scandal seemed like one of the biggest stories of the past decade, and it wasn’t even a blip), well I’m pretty sure I could duplicate that success. Once of course, I’d deciphered their overly complicated system for ensuring the reins of everything are kept in their hands.

    On second thought no. I’d fall asleep with drool falling from my chin reading about swaps and the like.

    Guess they are the 2% for a reason.

  41. rod1963 says:
    @grey enlightenment

    “Charles Murray and others agree that the the economy and society is and will continue to be stratified by IQ, as what some could call Social Darwinism 2.0 or the high-IQ aristocracy”

    High IQ aristocracy my ass, more like educated and inbred fools when hear them on TV open their Ivy League pie holes. You have to wonder how they got where they are, I suspect nepotism and outright lying out their pants played a big role, it certainly wasn’t their intellect.

    And if they are so smart why did they put the nation on the Amtrak to Hell and went along for the ride?

    Think about it, the demographic and economic changes they’ve wrought will impact them because of their magnitude. Smart people wouldn’t do this, clever monkeys would.

    This is what gets me about the HBD crowd(modern day Calvinists), they take one aspect of a human being and make it the end all and be all. Yes, IQ is important but spending 20 years in flight test, with more high powered engineers than I care to remember, one thing stood out about them., That most of these people were only bright in one specific area and gobsmackin dumb in others. Tech smart, world stupid as we called it back then.

    The perfect drone bred to work in a Herman-Miller cube farm. That’s what that high IQ got them.

    And those far above them who prowl the halls of power in D.C. the think tanks and foundations . Well they aren’t even half as bright as those engineers. Most are either non-practicing lawyers or have some worthless Ivy League degree in Foreign Studies of some sort. Not very impressive. What is impressive are their school and family connections, that opens a lot of doors that are closed to the lower caste members of society.

  42. Joe Webb says:

    cheap laughs, drivel, one or two paragraphs tops, should be it. maybe one or two sentences.

    Let me rain on your parade of ego and uselessness.

    “Exotic fighter planes that would never do anything to justify their existence but bomb remote goat-herds absorbed thousands of engineers and hundreds of billions of dollars.” course…no mention of the wars for Israel, or as they should be called The Jewish Wars after the ancient Josephus’ book by the same title.

    The total pentagon budget is just over 500 billion, which is mostly spent not on weapons, but people, debt,etc. In a 16 trillion dollar economy, the whole budget is peanuts, or almost peanuts.

    Then, when the cheap laughs abate, think about those exotic planes that will save us from the Chinese. Thank god for ICBMs as well. Thats a joke than means something too. No, the Chinese are not funny either. But for Fred it is any cheap shot for a knee-jerk laugh, and mostly it is a big White joke. All his targets are White. He wants I guess, to go prime time, and he should.

    Reed is a joker but gets too much airtime, particularly while the king has some important matters to attend to. Also, Reed never mentions the Mexicans cuz he is married to one, and cuz some things are not funny. He also avoids poking fun at Israel, Jews, Blacks and whomever is actually the problem. O the femmie-commies are safe enough, but no wise-crack re their ethnicity is pee-cee for Fred. Don’t piss off any of your market share.

    Now, I understand that using words like Black, Mexican, Jew, Israel, Neo-cons, but maybe not New World Order since that is sufficiently vague so as not to trigger Seriousness and thus seal the fate of Humor….on the other hand, I recall the Black comic Richard Pryor, who could stay funny while he was serious. Like: “you white folks wonder why us niggers do so much cuttin’…its cuz we ain’t got no guns.” however Times change and today Bloomberg (is that his name?) is calling to take guns away from Black males 15 to 25. Now that’s funny…like Richard Pryor. An update, “yu wanna know why us niggers ain’t doing so much shooting’ , cuz da Blue Eye Debil steal our pieces an’ we back to razors.”

    Now that is some real humor that actually counts for something. mebbe.

    Fred is totally Safe. What a commentary on Free Spoeech. Take the Jews, please….remember that one from the Jewish comic I think, what’s his name…only it was “wife.”

    Joe Webb

    • Replies: @Sunbeam
  43. Sunbeam says:
    @Joe Webb

    “The total pentagon budget is just over 500 billion, which is mostly spent not on weapons, but people, debt,etc. In a 16 trillion dollar economy, the whole budget is peanuts, or almost peanuts.”

    I realize you wanted to pee in the Wheaties, but the listed figure for military spending isn’t correct, or at least is not the whole of the story.

    A lot of things are financed with borrowed, money and they are hidden with accounting tricks.

    Then there is true “Black” spending which is not accounted for in any way, and is pretty substantial. I can’t believe it is as big as some claim, but I would totally expect it to be more than 10% of our listed military spending.

    In short military spending is more than the 500 billion you have indicated, at least twice that I’d say.

    But I will readily be corrected by an expert if one cares to post. And by the way, the alphabet soup of intelligence agencies may or may not be included in your figure. NSA probably, but what about the CIA?

  44. @SeanK

    ““those people” who occupy the inner cities neither contribute or offer anything to society.”

    In fact, don’t they actually detract from society.

  45. @Cloudswrest

    “Perhaps $10 per mile walked on a treadmill for the able bodied”

    The treadmills could even be hooked up to a generator to create electricity!

  46. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    There’s a very simple solution. Sterilize anyone who has grown up on welfare right before they hit puberty. Once they’re gotten old and died, we will have caused a huge mass of useless population to become extinct. It’s a problem you can fix in just 3 generations.

    Liberals are already sniffing in that direction with their proposed ‘licensing to be parents’ laws.

  47. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Then, when the cheap laughs abate, think about those exotic planes that will save us from the Chinese.

    The Chinese? They’re our friends, they make everything we use, the clothes on our backs. What, people think they’ll get in some boats and storm the beaches? That’s delusional, probably the result of watching Red Dawn too many times.

  48. No mention of women in this analysis. Despite automation and off-shoring, the level of workforce participation is at at all time high in most western countries. Hence, women are increasingly taking jobs don’t men could be doing. It’s not so bad if you’re an engineer or a truck driver, but if you’re in a job requiring verbal intelligence or social skills, then you are going to facing a hell of a lot of job competition from women.

  49. Expounding on the comments made above that people should be paid to use treadmills is strangely close to the truth. Paying people to use a treadmill doesn’t make sense but a large reduction in their medical insurance does and the result is the same. We are in the midst of an obesity epidemic because americans stuff another 600 calories into their fat mouths every day than they did back in 1960. Diets fail 90% of the time. If you huff and puff on these boring machines on a near daily basis for at least half and hour at a time, abracadabra the weight just starts falling off. I am condemned to run away from a fat man for the rest of my life.

    Here’s the idea in practice.

    Your cable company hooks up an exercise bike that is placed right in front of a TV in your house. That way it can be accurately measured from an outside location, the cable company, how many hours a week the machine is being used. You have to be peddling this contraption at least two hours a week for each person in the household to get a serious reduction in their medical insurance. Personally I would like to see the TV start to dim IF the fat asses don’t peddle their behinds off but that is just me. We have become radicalized about smokers why not fat people.

  50. SeanK says:

    The treadmill idea is good. My only concearn is that black families will force their children to rack up the needed hours to collect the government handouts.

    • Replies: @E. Rekshun
  51. @SeanK

    Yes, there would be all kinds of scams going on to beat the system; you know, like all the welfare scams, food stamp scams, insurance scams, income tax and EITC scams.

  52. It’s no longer a problem solvable by peaceful means. Fred’s generation blew it – blew it for all succeeding generations – they killed America. Our ONLY hope at this point is a military dictatorship, an American General Pinochet, that would take our liberal elites out for pleasant helicopter rides and then impose the one policy that could work.

    If only Fred’s generation had, in creating their welfare state, added just two minor stipulations:

    (1). Voting rights are held ONLY by those who pay more in taxes than they receive in ANY form of government payment. Welfare? No vote. Government employee or contractor? No vote. Social security? No vote. He who pays gets to decide how to spend the money – period.

    (2). Welfare? Sure, but you give up reproductive rights. If you tell me you cannot even care for yourself, you definitely cannot care for children. If you want me to pay your bills, fine, but in exchange I must be assured you won’t impose another hungry mouth on my pocketbook.

    And of course immigration. Stupid, insane, criminal, treasonous, genocidal unfettered immigration of illiterate semi-retarded violent immoral Neolithic aliens. America already had millions of negroes!

    I only hope that when the day comes, and it WILL come, the folks who actively assisted in America’s destruction through allowing alien invasion, allowing unconditional welfare, and allowed the State payroll to exceed 50% of the population, that the responsible will still be alive so they may be punished .. appropriately.

    • Replies: @Chris Mallory
  53. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The Andy Griffith Show covered those “tax issues” related to game show winnings in the 1960s!

  54. @Stan D Mute

    It wasn’t Fred’s generation that created the welfare state. You have the “Greatest Generation” to thank for that. Fred’s generation didn’t take power until the early 1990’s.

  55. ” There should be some universal ‘default’ job, available to everyone. ”

    But in whose interest would that be?

    Certainly not that of the movers and shakers, who regard that the purpose of current arrangements is to benefit them alone.

    Adam Smith’s Vile Maxim, “More for me, less for everyone else.”

  56. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    A Partial Answer –

    Supplant the current system of toxic – soil and ecosystem destroying machinery intensive petroleum based agriculture with largely organic, largely draft animal powered labor intensive agriculture.

    A new Homestead Act. Fill in the emptied out rural center of America.

    Soaks up a lot of excess labor – and there is no real necessity for wide-scale semi subsistence agriculture to be starvation agriculture in today’s world – not in the West anyhow.

    You would be surprised how many people don’t mind hard work if they get something for it.

    Wendell Berry lays it out – read “Culture and Agriculture” for starters.

  57. pyrrhus says:

    Because this toxic mess is going to collapse–at that point, the gear will come in handy…

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