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Guest Post: Have You Noticed This Type Of Inflation

Tyler Durden's picture




 

Submitted by Simon Black from Sovereign Man

Have you noticed this very deceptive form of inflation?

Every summer, my colleagues and I invite young people from all over the world for an intensive 4-day workshop about freedom and entrepreneurship.

This year’s workshop just concluded yesterday afternoon, and it was, without doubt, the best one ever.

58 students attended from countries as diverse as Tajikistan, Bangladesh, Japan, Venezuela, Singapore, Russia, the Philippines, Greece, Malaysia, Turkey, Australia, China, Belarus, Switzerland, England, Poland, Canada, the US, and many more.

These are highly motivated young people. They get it. They know that the system has completely failed them. They know that the old path of ‘study hard, get into a good school, get a good job, work your way up the ladder, and retire’ is no longer valid for their generation.

They understand that they will not be able to count on their governments for anything. They realize that they only have themselves to rely on. They’re eager to learn, and to execute.

The experience of helping shape these sharp young minds is truly invigorating. And for many of the students, it can be life changing.

Something interesting happened this year, though.

For the past several years, we have been conducting this event at a lovely resort in the Lithuanian countryside. It’s a pretty place– a nice, comfortable, relaxing environment away from all the noise and distraction of daily life.

Now, I pay for the whole thing myself. I rent out the entire resort and pick up the total cost of food, lodging, entertainment, etc. For this year’s event, my staff was able to negotiate the same price as last year, and I was happy about this.

But after the first two days, we began to notice something different: the resort was actually skimping out on our food portions!

In other words, they kept the price the same as last year… but they were delivering less value than before. In this case, it was in the form of food portions that were at least 10% smaller!

(Needless to say, we rectified this by ordering several dozen pizzas… followed by a very candid conversation with the resort’s General Manager.)

This is an example of something that I see all over the world. It’s a shadow form of inflation that I call ‘value deflation’.

You see, most people think that inflation is really all about price, i.e. paying X% more this year than last year. But this is merely one version of inflation.

At its core, inflation is loss of purchasing power. This can mean an increase in price for the same amount of stuff, or it can mean a decrease in the amount of stuff for the same price.

I see many signs of both all over the world as I travel.

Price inflation is obvious. We all know when we’re paying more because we see the price tag. When the price of food or fuel goes up, in fact, it can even result in sticker shock.

Value deflation, on the other hand, is far more deceptive. Most people aren’t that closely attuned to realize that their portions are getting smaller, that their ‘extras’ are going away, etc. We didn’t notice until our stomachs started growling.

Value deflation is not taught at university economics courses; you’ll never hear any of these Nobel economists or central bankers mention it. Stiglitz, Krugman, and Bernanke all happily tow the line that ‘there is no inflation’ because the price of iPads keeps going down.

These are the people who have the power to influence policy and conjure trillions of dollars out of thin air… and it’s amazing how easily they can hide the truth from people through this shadow inflation.

Curiously, this is what passes as a free society today. It is a truly, truly bizarre system.

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Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:02 | 2665915 Race Car Driver
Race Car Driver's picture

This is all very new(s) to me - thank you!

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:06 | 2665936 Dr Benway
Dr Benway's picture

Please label Sovereign Man articles so I can avoid them.

 

Useless travelogue mixed with thinly veiled boasts, with a few cliched obvious facts thrown in

 

0/10

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:10 | 2665954 Stackers
Stackers's picture

U.S. producers of consumer products have been steadily reducing packaging sizes for years now. There are many "news exposes" on the subject.

So, yes I have noticed this type of inflation for years now.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:13 | 2665984 yrbmegr
yrbmegr's picture

Even more insidious is when they don't reduce packaging size, but reduce contents of the packaging.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:30 | 2666079 AnonymousCitizen
AnonymousCitizen's picture

Quite a well-known phenomenon.

See: "grocery shrink ray"

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:33 | 2666092 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Run Eliza Run!... Run from Simon!...

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:24 | 2666307 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

One quick search and you will find thousands of articles on this topic dating back several years.

 

Here is one from Jan 11:

http://www.cnbc.com/id/40909380

 

This from 2008:

http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/food/2008-06-11-shrinking-sizes...

 

Inflation doesn't exist though, and you can eat your iPad.

 

I think these symptoms are noticeable first in the service industry though.  Poor service comes first.  That includes public and private.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:07 | 2666444 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

I just finished a bag of peanuts from our vending machine at work. A bag that was half the size of the ones there last week. Now, perhaps the quality is improved (new bags are Planters)?

*checks bag*

Nope, still the same old pesticide ridden cottonseed oil.

Oh well, arsenic is good for you, right?

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:32 | 2666512 Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

To: Dr. Benway

I call BULLSHIT - you love reading Simon's articles and posting your stupid comments.

The second main line says, "Submitted by Simon Black from Sovereign Man"

If I'm wrong I appologize and never expect to see your posts on Simon's article sagain! 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:59 | 2666579 WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot
WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot's picture

There's no indication on the main page that it's a SM article. However, I can usually tell by the headline.

Simon Black = Aleksey Vayner

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:14 | 2666273 fockewulf190
fockewulf190's picture

10% decline in food portion sizes? What were you doing last year, measuring the diameter of the burgers and compairing the results to this years?

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 18:50 | 2666699 BigInJapan
BigInJapan's picture

Not to mention ". . . dozens of pizzas" is a whole lot of pizza. . . anywhere. . . not just in the Lithuanian countryside.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:58 | 2666193 Ignatius
Ignatius's picture

Beaver:  "Gee, Eddy, why you such a creep.  Always lyin', cheatin' and stealin'?"

Eddy (grinning):  "My uncle says it will help me in business."

 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:14 | 2666270 aint no fortuna...
aint no fortunate son's picture

In addition to shrinkage and reduction in contents of packaging they also hollow out bottoms of a lot of the plastic and glass food containers - if you look at the bottle from the side it looks the same but you have to turn it upside down to see its hollowed out... they're such kind and compassionate folks, always looking out for the little guy!

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 18:55 | 2666719 BigInJapan
BigInJapan's picture

No such imaginative methods required over here.
They just make it smaller and charge the same price.
Nobody says a thing in the media because Dentsu (AKA the fucking devil) run Bartertown.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:20 | 2666294 PiratePawpaw
PiratePawpaw's picture

And worst of all,......Common sense isnt even common now.

 

Quite rare in fact.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:49 | 2666401 Ying-Yang
Ying-Yang's picture

Personally... I just think everyone is getting bigger so the packaging looks smaller (sarc)

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:42 | 2666544 Gazooks
Gazooks's picture

No, ...my last hooker was definitely a midget.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 18:48 | 2666691 Papasmurf
Papasmurf's picture

I never hit bottom, so a midget is a-okay.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:22 | 2666034 Born Patriot
Born Patriot's picture

Now I'm no economist, but one thing I know is that our economy just ain't gonna grow unless we unite. Simple as that folks. Splinter groups like conspiracy theorists and libertarians are undermining the collective belief in American values, and this in turn is undermining our economy. Some people are just going to have to grow up. We can't continue to tolerate whiny little fag libertarians continuing to attack our congress and federal reserve like they're Islamic terrorists or some shit. Just get some balls dammit and stop whining!!! These are dire times and we need to be united as a country or we're not gonna make it. 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:27 | 2666062 swmnguy
swmnguy's picture

We also need to preserve our Purity Of Essence, or we won't be able reproduce.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:50 | 2666163 TrainWreck1
TrainWreck1's picture

Women sense my power, and are drawn to it.

I do not avoid women, but I do deny them my essence.

 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:13 | 2666263 PiratePawpaw
PiratePawpaw's picture

Flouridation is a communist plot...........thats why I only drink distilled water and scotch.

 

I also dont carry loose change into combat.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 20:47 | 2667045 Montecarlo
Montecarlo's picture

I second that - and in doing so, check if my avatar has been updated...

 

That would be a Yes. Thank you Tylers.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:52 | 2666169 Offthebeach
Offthebeach's picture

Clemenceau?

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:56 | 2666184 Max Hunter
Max Hunter's picture

These are dire times

No shit Sherlock.. How the fuck do you think these dire times came about? By the very people you say we undermine by holding accountable.. You're a fucking moron and part of the problem.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:27 | 2666321 PiratePawpaw
PiratePawpaw's picture

All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.

 

Good people have gotten damn good at doing nothing.

Lets see how this turns out.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:57 | 2666189 Dr.Vannostrand
Dr.Vannostrand's picture

Fuck off sockpuppet!

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:00 | 2666204 I dont belong here
I dont belong here's picture

Fuck off, you NWO douchebag. Take your psyops somewhere else.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:26 | 2666285 TPTB_r_TBTF
TPTB_r_TBTF's picture

,

These are dire times and we need to be united as a country or we're not gonna make it. 


A few are gonna "make it"; most wonT.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:52 | 2666407 Ying-Yang
Ying-Yang's picture

"attack our.... federal reserve" ??? Is that you Robo?

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:15 | 2666468 Red Heeler
Red Heeler's picture

"Some people are just going to have to grow up."

Right on! I'm pointing my finger at those who are fifteen and under . . . . unless they were born, you know, patriots.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 19:59 | 2666737 BigInJapan
BigInJapan's picture

"fag libertarians"? I've never once seen those two words together. Congratulations. "fag liberals"? I've seen that. But hey, I'm Libertarian. If you wanna be a fag, just go right ahead and fag out. "Banding together" is not on my menu. I'm better than you are.

I see you want back and edited the "fag" reference out of your post, Born Backpedaller.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:30 | 2666332 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

my three pound can of coffee(in 1984) has steadily shrunk to a new low of 28 ounces.

how the fuck far behind the power curve are you (simple) simon black?

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:22 | 2666482 BooMushroom
BooMushroom's picture

Once it gets down to 24 oz, they'll come out with a new "value size," can, which will, coincidentally, weigh three pounds, and be the old #10 can. And it will cost twenty bucks or more.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:15 | 2665988 paulbain
paulbain's picture

Dr. Benway wrote:

Please label Sovereign Man articles so I can avoid them.

Hell, yes!! One hundred "thumbs-up!!" I could not agree more. Gawd, is he tiresome!!

-- Paul D. Bain

paulbain@pobox.com

 

 

 

 

 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:36 | 2666080 Popo
Popo's picture

+10000

For anyone unfamiliar with Simon Black -- let me put it this way:  He lies.  He lies consistently and about everything.

Go and look up his paper on "network infiltration" which is basically an essay on how to lie your way into situations where people trust you and pay you.

Simon teaching a class in Lithuania every year?  LOLOLOL.  There was no class.  There aren't young people flocking from all over the world to meet Simon.   He's a blogger who's purpose is to portray a fantasy image of himself as an international man of mystery.

It wouldn't be so bad if he didn't write stories about "how to lie for your financial benefit".  

Credibility:  ZERO.

Tyler, please lose this loser.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:09 | 2666246 TrainWreck1
TrainWreck1's picture

The paper that "the volume of people simultaneously trying to download it temporarily crashed my Ireland-based web server over the weekend." lol

http://www.sovereignman.com/lifestyle-design/network-infiltration-820/

(Note on the header on that page: "As seen on Zero Hedge", etc...)

 

 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 17:17 | 2666461 Popo
Popo's picture

I mean, think about that claim for a second: He releases a paper (ie: blog post) which requires you to enter your email address in order to read it (like some cheesy marketing page) and he claims that there were so many responses to this "incredible offer" that his server crashed. (Because you know those 'enter-your-email' forms are seriously CPU intensive little buggers! Lulz)

Suuure...There must have been a veritable global stampede of students from all over the world just dying to go to Lithuania and pay Simon (who?) to talk about his entrepreneurial experience (which includes.. what? Blogging. Lol.)

His claims are so flat-out stupid that it's amazing more people here don't ridicule him.

What an ass.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 21:20 | 2667124 Hive Raid
Hive Raid's picture

"Lithuanian youth camp"... hmmm... would make good cover for a pedophile.

When Simon the corduroy Jew deliberately seeks out the poorest parts of Europe, methinks benevolently spending his hard-conned sheckels to educate the native goyim is not on his itinerary.

Jews run a thriving white slavery/prostitution trade from Eastern Europe down to Israel. Who knows how many gentile children are chained in rabbis' basements in Jerusalem.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 22:25 | 2667290 Popo
Popo's picture

Seek help.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:32 | 2666338 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

i dont often read simon blacks material, but when i do , i ignore it.

 

-the most interesting man in the world

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:16 | 2665996 New American Re...
New American Revolution's picture

Hear that, in total agreement.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:18 | 2666007 Jonas Parker
Jonas Parker's picture

"Please label Sovereign Man articles so I can avoid them."

 

Doc, wouldn't it just be easier for you to learn to read and then you could avoid them without help, all by yourself, like a big boy?

 

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:37 | 2666118 Popo
Popo's picture

Except they're frequently not credited on the homepage.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:26 | 2666051 nedwardkelly
nedwardkelly's picture

Reminds me of this whenever I see a sovereign man article

https://twitter.com/Humblebrag

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 21:20 | 2667132 ForTheWorld
ForTheWorld's picture

Woah. Narcissists R Us.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:28 | 2666065 msmith9962
msmith9962's picture

Let me tell you a story about something obvious so you can find out how rich and fancy I am.

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 15:49 | 2666159 terryfuckwit
terryfuckwit's picture

and very often I too can confirm a bird in the hand can be worth two in said bush

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 16:15 | 2666278 PiratePawpaw
PiratePawpaw's picture

I currently have a bird in the hand, where can I exchange that for the aforementioned two?

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