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Old 11-11-2015, 19:22   #241
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

[QUOTE=Ann T. Cate;1956668]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post

Please, Boatguy, give it a break!

Obviously, Kenomac's not starving, but so what? How'd you like to post your income tax return? Don't know about you, but I won't....and would not expect anyone whatsoever to post intimate financial details on a public forum. Ever.

If your point is that you cannot make a living without inflated prices for boating equipment, then state your case more clearly, please.
I made something like $23,752 last year. Spent 4 months in the Bahamas and 6 weeks in Michigan over the summer.
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Old 11-11-2015, 21:21   #242
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by daletournier View Post
I think Mike touched on this earlier, you can live cheap in Western counties if you choose but the reality is its very difficult, we are a society created to consume and the pressure to consume is to much for most, it keeps us poor. Its interesting that most of my friends think I'm rich because I live on a yacht overseas, and I probably am ,but not the way they think.
I agree Dale, and I think you're right about choices and consequences. It is hard to be free in our society. Our consumer society is structured to lock us in, and keep us running. Debt is the key, which is delivered through education, housing, cars, kids and endless doodads. Stay away from debt, and live frugally; these are the keys to freedom.

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Originally Posted by senormechanico View Post
Ethanol made from corn.
Too bad it makes corn flakes, meat and almost all other food more expensive, and uses more fuel than it makes, but it's a good idea, let's burn food in our cars.
Too bad if it wrecks older fuel systems.
Let 'em buy a new one.
I completely agree with your criticism Senior. Converting food stocks to stuff we can burn in our cars is lunacy. It's bad economically, bad socially, and bad for the environment. It's just another clue that those with power now control government.
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Old 12-11-2015, 00:40   #243
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

yes it's strange. Here in DK, beef and lamb are expensive, pork and chicken are cheap.

Don't ask what the price of fish is - in this country, where you can't get more than 50 miles form the ocean fish is so expensive that it is only served for special occassions. And it is not the fishermen who are making the money, it all somewhere in between the fishermen and consumer.

Much as we complain about debt,we should be cognizant of the fact that the greatest contributor to their being a middle class was the advent of the home mortgage, which allows you to borrow money against future earnings to buy a home.

Before home mortgages (which at the start were issued by mortgage associations and savings and loans which were owned by the loan-takers), you had to save up your entire lifetime before you could accumulate enough cash to buy a home/land (witness the popularity of the the Land Rushes in the US in the late 1800's)

Home mortgages became viable when governments started allowing income tax deductions for interest expense.

The system broke down when when consumer owned mortgage associations were sold to banks (as were savings and loans). This was in the 70's and early 80's in the US.

A good sized middle class is a necessity for politcal stability and economic growth.

Unfortunatley, in many western countries the middle class is not growing, but becoming smaller.

Makes you wonder where we all are headed?
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Old 12-11-2015, 01:33   #244
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by jongleur View Post
My insurance guy told me today
that the inflation rate is calculated
ignoring healthcare costs, housing
costs, and energy costs. I don't
know if I buy that. Things seem
really expensive lately.
The US government uses the term core inflation as opposed to the term inflation. The method the US government uses to calculate core inflation does ignore what it calls "volatile food and energy" costs. This core inflation rate is used to calculate increases in many government payments like Social Security. Critics point out that many folks who get Social Security spend the bulk of their Social Security on things like food and energy.

The US government does track on a monthly basis about 10,000 different items to calculate the inflation rate; including things like health care, housing, food and energy.

I would point out that the bottom fell out of the housing market and it has not recovered yet so housing costs are still low. On the other hand rent has been increasing significantly.
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Old 12-11-2015, 06:13   #245
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
... Safeway is makin' $$$ hand over fist, even trying to go public I read recently. Once they do that, it's customers be damned 'cuz of the shareholders ...
Apparently, that’s on hold. Albertsons bought Safeway for $9.2 billion and then took the supermarket chain private. Then in July of this year, Albertsons filed papers for the IPO, that has now been postponed.
Safeway’s owner Albertsons postpones IPO, signaling trouble ahead - San Francisco Chronicle

FWIW:
Albertsons lost a net $413 million in the 12 months ended June 20, including $126 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2015, which also ended June 20.
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Old 12-11-2015, 17:15   #246
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
Much as we complain about debt,we should be cognizant of the fact that the greatest contributor to their being a middle class was the advent of the home mortgage, which allows you to borrow money against future earnings to buy a home.
...
The system broke down when when consumer owned mortgage associations were sold to banks (as were savings and loans). This was in the 70's and early 80's in the US.

A good sized middle class is a necessity for politcal stability and economic growth.

Unfortunatley, in many western countries the middle class is not growing, but becoming smaller.

Makes you wonder where we all are headed?
All true carstenb. Not all debt is bad. It is the unmanageable debt that traps people. All the market forces operating in our capitalist consumer economies push people into higher and higher debt (debt to income). As daletournier says, some of us can resist this pressure, but it is very difficult to do so.

Where are we headed? Personally, I'm going sailing . But I do think the revolution will eventually come ... historically, it always does. When enough people hurt bad enough, it will come.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomfl View Post
The US government uses the term core inflation as opposed to the term inflation. The method the US government uses to calculate core inflation does ignore what it calls "volatile food and energy" costs. .
Yup ... the costs that are most essential to the middle class are the factors not considered in calculating the rate the government uses as the basis for policy and regulation Coincidence? I think not .
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Old 12-11-2015, 19:11   #247
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

I sold my home a couple of months ago and am becoming a renter again for the first time in a long time.
Rent is very high, much higher than the cost of rental property would justify, It's supply and demand, apparently very many people "lost" their homes not too long ago and cannot qualify for a loan as they defaulted on their last one, well they are now renters, the number of renters has apparently increased significantly, available rental property hasn't.
So oddly with bunches of houses in foreclosure still, rental houses go for a premium.
For an economy that has essentially no inflation, the rising cost of must have items like food is ridiculous, while I am no economic expert by any means, keeping interest rates at almost 0 with an apparent significant rate of inflation, will eventually have to be paid for somehow?
How do you pay for that? I've been expecting significant inflation for years as a correction, but it hasn't happened.
Am I right in thinking the longer it takes before a correction, the worse it will be?
I assume being in a position of having no debt, but money in investments is the position to be in if we get inflation the like of the Jimmy Carter days?

Or am I nuts? as I said I'm no economist


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Old 12-11-2015, 19:48   #248
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Absolutely, I believe we are just kicking the can down the road! And when the dam breaks it will be more pain than we needed to have if we had just let free markets find their own equilibrium. Zero interest rates is the equivalent of economic life support, raising interest rates is the equivalent of turning the machine off, but the patient won't kick on without it. My personal opinion is it's not a time for investing it's a time for defense! Investing died when the world suddenly believed you purchased something and sold 5 years later for double. That's not investing , it's speculating and there is a fundamental difference. My parents who hand their money to financial managers to " invest" are not investors , just as their neighbour's aren't, they're speculators ( gamblers) but don't realize they are. Money needs to be created through effort, mental or physical , not just our of thin air. We are currently in a period of deflation due to massive access to credit over the last couple of decades, the fed etc are fighting this with massive money creation ( or of nothing ) that quite possibly will lead to inflation. In the mean while the average family has less money to spend due to their debt saturation.
Anyway huge topic that could go on for ever, that I certainly don't claim to fully understand but are doing my best to fortify my position as I believe it has to end badly. Fundamentals always hold true.
Cheers Dale.

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Old 12-11-2015, 19:48   #249
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Yup yup and yup.

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Old 12-11-2015, 19:53   #250
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
...if we get inflation the like of the Jimmy Carter days?
Good article regarding that claim:

Inflation: The Reagan Myth and Carter RecordÂ*|Â*Paul A. London

Worst inflation was with Gerald Ford.
Remember "Whip Inflation Now"?
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Old 12-11-2015, 20:18   #251
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
I sold my home a couple of months ago and am becoming a renter again for the first time in a long time.
Rent is very high, much higher than the cost of rental property would justify, It's supply and demand, apparently very many people "lost" their homes not too long ago and cannot qualify for a loan as they defaulted on their last one, well they are now renters, the number of renters has apparently increased significantly, available rental property hasn't.
So oddly with bunches of houses in foreclosure still, rental houses go for a premium.
For an economy that has essentially no inflation, the rising cost of must have items like food is ridiculous, while I am no economic expert by any means, keeping interest rates at almost 0 with an apparent significant rate of inflation, will eventually have to be paid for somehow?
How do you pay for that? I've been expecting significant inflation for years as a correction, but it hasn't happened.
Am I right in thinking the longer it takes before a correction, the worse it will be?
I assume being in a position of having no debt, but money in investments is the position to be in if we get inflation the like of the Jimmy Carter days?

Or am I nuts? as I said I'm no economist


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This is probably deemed political, but you are a moderator and you asked the question.

Imho, get ready for a big haircut in the value of the dollar.
China, Switzerland and several other countries are now buying oil NOT denominated in US Dollars. Do a bit of looking around and you will see the writing on the wall.
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Old 12-11-2015, 20:57   #252
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

I have been of the opinion since 91 that we would be in trouble the day oil wasn't traded in US dollars, I expected a "Petro Dollar" to be created and have thought many times since that it hasn't because it's the way Saudi Arabia and friends are paying us back for the first Gulf war.
Now that is just my speculation, not based on anything but my thoughts, but as someone who knows nothing about economics, what is the value of a dollar based on? Way back when it was backed by gold of course, but I don't think there exists enough gold anymore, so my thought it's a barrel of oil now? Sort of? Yeah I know the theory its based on good will or whatever, but have trouble understanding that.

I d not think we have gone political, that happens when someone starts blaming a person or party. I said Jimmy Carter I guess as I'm from very close to Plains Ga., and remember the very late 70's and early 80's when interest rates for houses I believe were double digit? But was not blaming him or his party, actually I don't know why it happened or why it stopped. I was young then and really don't know, I was trying to make a living as a contract welder in the oil field when it collapsed.


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Old 12-11-2015, 21:24   #253
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

In my country (Canada), central bankers and government ministers have been warning the populace about our going deeper and deeper in debt. They admonish people for taking on what is now record levels of household debt, driving housing prices and consumer goods ever higher. All the while they keep interest rates at historic lows (prime now at 0.5%), and then wonder why people keep buying more and bigger and going deeper into debt. At the same time good jobs are sent to low wage/low regulation areas while we all race to the global bottom of costs and incomes.

Who does this benefit? Not me, and not you.

I think we are entering into a new economic reality ... or maybe it is an old one. In any case, I'm going sailing. It's the only rational response I can come up with. I just wish the craft beer was cheaper.
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Old 12-11-2015, 22:32   #254
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

The only real thing in this discussion is
that prices are going up. That is
inflation and it is fundamentally caused
by too many people going after too few
resources.

Stop having babies.
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Old 12-11-2015, 22:45   #255
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

I probably live quite frugally compared to most, which is what allows me to have a house here in Canada, a condo in Florida and my boat. I have always made a practice of buying well, and if I can't afford it, it waits. I have not bought a new car since 1973, and have not had a car payment since 1976.

I find that food one can adjust. Price of beef too high (which it is), don't buy any. Price of certain vegetables high because of seasonal differences? Substitute others. Watch the sales, buy at No-Frills in Canada or Aldi's in the US. I rarely spend more than $125 Canadian or $100 US a month for food. Buy at farmer's markets or fruit/vegetable stands. Stock up with in season and freeze or can if you can. Don't buy any processed food, but make your own. It is cheaper, healthier, and better for you.

Gas is lower than it has been for almost a decade.

Avoiding debt is the big one, but that is often a self discipline thing. People buy because they think they need to, and all it really is, is a want. People want too much, 52 inch TVs, the latest Apple smartphone, the newest truck, or the next McMansion. That is not the government's fault, but their own. They are the same ones who whine and snivel if the economy turns, and they are upside down on their mortgage.

I don't have much sympathy for those so affected... it's their own doing, they are adults, and flushing out their excesses is good for the economy in the long run.

There is a whole generation who has grown up with low inflation and interest rates. They do not know the horrible impacts of high ones. That may occur at some point.
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