Inhale, Exhale

August 2009

Capitalism – founded as it is on endless growth – is like inhalation without a corresponding exhalation. You balloon up until you can no longer hold any more breath, at which point you either release it all in a violent gust, or you rupture.

 State socialism or communism, on the other hand, represents more of an effort to not breathe at all – if you can breathe in the right amount right at the start and stop there, you'll never need to exhale or inhale any further. Or maybe it's circular breathing? You exhale simultaneously with inhaling. Either way, socialism/communism represents an attempt to create a static system – it's the polar opposite of capitalism, and it's equally flawed.

 The interesting thing is that recessions and depressions arguably represent the gasped exhalations of capitalism – the only way it knows to keep itself alive, to avoid complete asphyxiation.

 What would an economy look like if it breathed properly?

nato commented:

Interesting, a point I have heard, (but not sure if I fully comprehend) - the probability of a recession ending increases the longer it is - much like breathing out, whereas the probability of a recession does not increase the longer it is - quite unlike natural breathing. In other words, the economy keeps getting better, but has occasional hiccups. Not quite like breathing.