Thursday, June 4, 2009

Still no supply

Still no supply

Every day I stop into the local Wal-Mart to see if their supply of ammunition has improved. Sadly, it has not. Instead, a sign appeared recently which likely shows the true state of affairs in the industry. Namely, that we are still experiencing extremely tight supply, and now rationing is being imposed.

Rationing is a reasonable response from a seller's point of view, if your goal is to spread available supplies to a wider audience. From a Liberty perspective though, rationing ignores the truth that those who are prepared and can pay for an item or service should be able to reap the reward of their preparation.

Please think about rationing of goods and services for a moment. Whenever there is scarcity of a good or service, whether through true market forces or artificial interference into a market, the laws of supply and demand should allow the price of an item to rise until the new market value is established and market forces are once again in equilibrium. Whenever rationing is imposed, the market is distorted because the value of the good or service is never allowed to establish itself. Thus, competition is stifled and scarcity will continue.

If we apply this thought to the Mortgage market, or to Health care, or to Automobile manufacturing, we can see that whenever undue outside influence (IE, not market forces) are brought into the equation, the natural market adjustments of supply and demand are disrupted.

In the Mortgage market, an outside agent (FNMA and FHLMC-acting on behalf of the US Government and under the cover of the Community reinvestment Act) forced lenders to make loans which were not sound, at prices far below the true risk that they represented to the lenders. Lenders responded by figuring out a way to shift that risk to others in the form of diluted shares of the risk, spread about many different security vehicles. The investors of these securities were never the wiser, until the house of cards collapsed.

In the Health Care industry, we see an outside agent (The US Government, acting through the FDA, Medicare, and insurance regulations; and the AMA acting as a trade guild to limit entry to the market by additional providers) causing distortions in the provision of health care by constraining product development, limiting access, and forcing companies to forgo profits by capping fees, after requiring that the service providers give care to people who are unable to pay for the services. Combine these forces with rampant tort exposure from an out of control legal system and you have a situation where the care is either going to get very expensive (rational market reaction in a free market), or care will get rationed (the case today). Government created the same problem that they are about to "solve", through nationalization of an industry that they crippled through regulation and legal extortion.

The Auto industry: General Motors' demise and takeover, at the hands of the very people who enabled the cause of their destruction, was inevitable. The US Federal Government leviathan rigged the system in favor of the UAW and SEIU, siding with the workers almost every time that a labor dispute went to mediation and in at least one case that went to the Supreme Court. The UAW and SEIU are wonderful examples of looter organizations sucking a company dry through legalized extortion and wage-benefit concessions. Shame on GM, Ford, and Chrysler for signing those suicide pacts, but a great deal of the problem rests at the feet of the enablers in the Labor Department and the Congress.

If you value your life and liberty, learn the lesson that the looters have shown us so far with these three major industries. It is not a matter of if, rather of when, they come for your industry or company next. The leviathan is all about aggrandizing power unto itself now, and is doing so nakedly, openly, and without any pretense any longer. If you have not prepared yourself or family for survival in the event of a natural disaster, you need to do so NOW. The system is no longer going to come to your aid. You need to be prepared to take care of yourself and your family when services are disrupted. And, if the services are disrupted due to man-made events, then you need to be prepared for that too.

There are storm clouds gathering on the horizon. Take action now.



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