Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Pope Says: "I am Worried About Liquidty "

Even the Pope, it turns out is concerned about the spawning of excess global liquidity, for he too has a business to run. And though the most important inputs are ephemeral, he still has a meaningful infrastructure to maintain, and payroll to meet that BINGO! alone cannot fulfill.

Though as with traditional contraception, he (or is it "He"?) certainly has some definitive preferences as to how it should be controlled. I was fascinated by the Pontiff's interest, to say the least, though perhaps not entirely surprised given his Germanic lineage. Upon closer scrutiny, I discovered that the similarities between traditional birth control and monetary contraception are remarkable indeed.

Take the Pope's favored method: Abstinence.. This is of course easier said than than done. We are, after all, only human. But it is problemmatical to watch your friends drinking, having fun and getting laid and not want to experience a bit of the fun. Even the Pope's only clergy has frequent lapses. And the longer the party goes on, the more that those with noses-pressed upon the glass, even with the most prudent of monetary intentions, will not desire experience the thrill of...

Voluntary Early Withdrawal, known technically as coitus interruptus is Church-approved (so long as occurring in a sanctioned union), and was for the past two hundred years or so, the traditional accepted method by which Authorities balanced the taming of animal spirits with the unnecessary impoverishment of the working man (through tight-money or too many offspring). But while it is entirely effective when properly exercised, the flaw with this method is that in the heat and enjoyment of the moment, when both passion and economic activity are errrr ummm elevated, proper execution despite the best laid-plans, is by no means assured, and often discarded. Yes there is some hand wringing, finger-pointing and regrets later, but at the most important moment, nothing is assured.

The Rhythm Method has its merits from a both theological and macroeconomic points of view. It's natural and unadulterated and therefore ecclesiatically friendly, and has been THE throttle of choice, historically, warts and all. But in modernity, The Polity feels humanity has advanced to levels where we no longer need to experience the ups and downs of the business cycle, irrespective of the diminishing marginal returns accruing to further interventions to stem the cyclical tides. And as practitioners of this method understand, knowing where you are in the cycle is of utmost importance!! Equally, if not more problemmatical in practice is that some participants simple do not
care where in the cycle we are, or try to use their wealth, might, ingenuity, and poor sense of financial engineering to neuter the very market forces and cycles that make it effective in the first instance.

Birth-Control Pills and Condoms are both condemned by the Pope as unnatural barriers to conception, just as taxes, tariffs and NTBs are dismissed by free-market economists. But what's a girl to do? My feeling always has been that theoretically, one would preferably not employ such methods, but in the practical here and now of the real world they actually do have a place, and potentially important one, to stem undesired children and inflation at the micro (for multitudes of reasons), and both population and liquidity growth in the macro. It's all well and good for the high and mighty to say what is "right" and what is "better", but they are mostly not the ones struggling with unwanted kids and living month-to-month under conditions of stagnant real wage growth and rollicking experienced inflation. So in the absence of other directly effective means and methods, I say pills & prophylactics all around!

Surgery, such as vasectomy or tubal ligation has always been a popular preventative measure amongst the middle-class in America, and I can only presume that the Church's fence sitting position on this is the reason, even though it seems to be a form of theological loophole. In economics, the analogy is something like wage & price controls, which achieves the superficial result by decree, but in a dishonest way, and with numerous side affects, the most obvious being cheating and infidelity, which may or may not be problemmatical depending upon one's point of view, but in either event is dishonest and less desirable than more direct means of resolution.

The Morning-After Pill, better known as "Plan-B" has its merits, despite the Church's vocal opposition. OK, so you made a mistake (as the film Knocked-Up you were drunk, he was a creep, or your central bank lowered interest rates just when huge tax cuts were approved. No big deal, just pop a pink-pilled financial dose of RU-486, jack-up rates (and as it happens, increase financial supervision of the asset-backed markets) and presto!, problem solved. I really do not understand the problem with flip-flopping, which to me, makes eminent Darwinian sense when not pursued pathologically, for when one is driving in one's car, and one sees a dead-end directly ahead, most folks would stop, admit they've made an error, and correct their course. Why is macroeconomics seemingly so different?!?!

Finally, there is abortion. Let me tell you at without pretense (at the risk of being hit by massive DNS attacks from Right-To-Lifers), that Abortion is OK in my book, and most certainly preferable to risking a mothers life, future parental financial destitution, being raised by parents who don't want you, or growing up in an abusive household (note for any kids reading this: An abusive household is NOT one where the parents coerce their children into practicing their Violin or revising Maths and Latin). Abortion is the economic equivalent of institutional change. It might be impeachment. Or it might be the final separation of FRBs mandated Siamese-Twin objectives of promoting growth AND price stability, or merely transforming a whipped CB into a fully-fledged, independent central bank. The problem with the Right-To-Life movement is that they, while typically optimistic, are always focusing on the negative aspects of abortion. I, on the hand, who's typically pessimistic, conjures up the positive possibilities, such as what might have happened is Rove's & Cheney's Brittany Spears' mamas had all decided that what they really wanted to pursue was a life under the bright lights of Hollywood, and that accidental children, while cute, would just get in the way of the pursuit of their inner desires...

1 comment:

Richard said...

All of the recent pope's personal methods of birth control likely involve that most depressingly effective method - OLD AGE. The rest is just jealousy.