Unseen hands

that manipulate interest rates, oil price, appropriate and earmark budgets for the commons.

Adam Smith must be talking about the abstract “invisible hand” of a free market, while in reality, we all feel there are levers behind the scene with successive hands, tinkling and adjusting. Some are automated, by self-improving algorithms.

One example of the devastating works of this unseen hand was seven or eight years ago, when people in Southern California driving to Arizona and Las Vegas to buy houses. People who were NINJ (No job, no income).

The unseen hand that was supposed to regulate, didn’t.

Now, they uncover a bunch of Ponzi schemes. Quickly, these poster boys are put away, or at least, taken out of their nice homes in Colorado.

I do buy things to sustain. Hence, I am a consumer, but refuse to be called consumerist. I don’t follow the cult of purchase for purchase’s sakes.

I don’t buy to stimulate anything. If the economy can’t get cranked by itself (with 7 Billion of us buying things day in and out), then all the unseen hands in the world can’t help it.

At least, there is some good news from the Michigan Consumer Confidence Index. And Wall Street chart starts looks like a slanted V-shaped recovery. Let’s hope so. Rally, rally, rally. Oil price goes up. Confidence is up. So is the temperature.

If you don’t hit the store by 10AM, forget it. The USA weather maps shows red-hot regions in the South. It’s global warming. And we need those unseen hands to regulate the thermostat as well. I am not against hands. Just encourage them to tinkle with the right buttons, while letting the market regulate itself, in the noble Adam Smith tradition.


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