I know libertarians would say we should wait until the threat is carried out and someone is actually raped and killed, but in the real world most of us would prefer to stop it happening in the first place.
Some libertarians might say that, but many libertarians including Rothbardians describe coercive behavior as "force or the threat of force." What constitutes a threat is subjective in many cases because people have different sensitivities. I am reasonably certain that the US Government is realistically threatening force against me if I don't pay my taxes, because I know they've used force against others. A guy in a bar who threatens to kick my ass is a lot less clear as to follow-through, and I'd probably have to take it on a case-by-case basis. A guy on
Similar assertions have been made by proponents of perpetual motion machines.
They do tend to keep going on and on about that. It never ends.
I wasn't exactly disagreeing with you. I was nodding to your mention of demand (or lack thereof) which, as I think you largely agree, is weak against supply right now. But...
I would severely contest that statement...
I'm from the USA. My statement about excess reserves is based on the published information from the Fed itself:
Now, unless you think the banks are outright lying about their capitalization, and the Fed and other regulators are looking the other way, clearly banks are not lending money they could choose to lend. I would definitely agree that at least to some extent the banks continue to deleverage because these numbers are based on book-value, not market value, of assets, and the central bank continues to quietly acquire $400 billion USD in mortgage backed securities last year to bail out the banks. Sooo, back to demand...why exchange dollar denominated assets for digital dollars (the Fed *IS* giving banks new dollars as reserve deposits in exchange for MBS and treasuries)? Because those assets are soon going to become worth a lot less. And I don't just think the MBSs, but also the treasuries. And the banks will be sitting on excess reserves, "high powered money", that after a write-down of US debt, will be worth enough to consist of a wealth transfer to the ultra-rich the likes of which the world has never seen.
I bring this up, because it's not a free-market operation, and it dwarfs any concept of income inequality Piketty can dream up.
The big fish are playing an entirely different game while "left" and "right" bicker over marginal tax rates...
There's a math problem here. These numbers cannot be correct. 320 million people, 6.7 trillion total government spending, 3.7 trillion just for the federal government:
That's $20,937 total spending per capita, and 11,562 federal spending per capita. I dont' trust that site - the numbers do not match. What's the disconnect between my numbers and yours from the same site?
I see people claim income inequality is an inherent quality of capitalism. Perhaps this is true, perhaps not. But why isn't such a criticism leveled in terms of communism, socialism, and social democracies? And extend the analysis to power as well as income. You'd see quickly that capitalism and free markets do quite well in comparison.
Further, look at the overall absolute quality of life. If I'm better off in a free market economy than an egalitarian social democracy, even though I'm relatively poorer than another guy who's WAY better off, I'm still better off overall. Zero-sum-game thinking from socialists can't begin to crack that nut.