This is why harassment continues. You're damned if you speak out, and damned if you don't.
About 46k people came down from Canada to the U.S. to get health care in 2011. Quite a bit of that was paid for by the Canadian health care system, not out of pocket. That's pretty much in the noise. Statistics on how many people come down from the U.S. to get health care in Mexico because they can't afford to get it in the U.S. are harder to come by because people who do that generally pay out of pocket, but the number is comparable, and the reason is different: U.S. citizens going to Mexico are doing so because they can't afford health care in the U.S.; Canadians are taking advantage of excess capacity in the U.S. system to shorten waits, with the financial support of the Canadian national health insurance system. Despite sending a small number of Canadians south each year, Canadian health care is still hugely cheaper than American health care. Many U.S. citizens also go to Canada to purchase prescription drugs because they can't afford them in the U.S.
Point being, while what you said is true, it doesn't lead to the conclusion you are suggesting.
It's true that eventually the money will reach a seller who doesn't buy stock with it, but it is not true that by definition that happens in time to do anything to grow the economy. The whole point of buying securities is to put your money somewhere where, hopefully, it grows, but even if not, at least it doesn't lose too much value. Indeed, one of the things that leads to bubbles is that if the money is all flowing into the pockets of people who don't need to spend it, they _have_ to find someplace to put it. First it's stocks and bonds, then junk bonds, then securitized mortgages. It's all very exciting, but it's death to economic prosperity.
I was being sarcastic, but if I were not, your advice would be well taken.
Modulo is geek slang, as well as a mathematical term. I was using it as slang. And indeed I suspect the reason it became slang, and likely the reason I use it, is, as you say, to sound smart. But at this point it's a habit—just part of my vernacular. Sorry for any confusion I may have caused.
When was the last time you ate a stock certificate? Sure, as another person above said, if you sell the stock and then spend the money, it does go into circulation, and that's good. But if you have no unmet needs, you sell the stock to buy a different stock, and a small commission goes to your broker, who buys stock with it, and everybody gets a little bit richer, but no economic activity occurs. This matters because the bulk of stock owners in our economy today have no real unmet needs, so in fact they do spend the proceeds of stock sales on other investments, rather than on goods and services. So anything that breaks that money out of the market and puts it into the economy is a win.
You just made my point for me. What makes the economy go is selling the stock and _spending the money on something other than stock_. As long as the money is just bouncing between stocks (or bonds, or other investment instruments), all it's doing is, as you say, serving to confirm the bet that the original investor in that stock made. So yes, when the economy is expanding, stock is important, because it's a way to borrow money so that you can increase production. But when the economy is not expanding, the money is just sitting there.
BTW, the 30% figure was sarcasm. I'm aware that trades don't cost that much.
Congrats on your new house. I hope you pay close attention to getting the envelope right. You'll be glad you did later (I say this because we did, and we are).
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Aah. Anybody remember Schoolhouse Rock?
Investing money in securities is typically about as useful to the economy as stuffing it in a mattress. It is only when money is spent on goods and services that it adds to the economy. When I buy $100 in Google stock, that money just vanishes as far as the economy is concerned (well, modulo the 30% broker fee, of course). It might come back later, but until it does it's gone.
Sure, but that's a straw man. People aren't just sitting around taking. Since people aren't just sitting around taking, the whole rest of your argument is invalid.
E.g., substantial food stamp payments go to people who have minimum-wage jobs. Government employees do work in exchange for what they are paid. Government retirees did work in exchange for what they are now being paid. So this idea that they are "sitting around taking" is just bollocks.
Yes, actually it does. If money isn't being spent, it doesn't buy work, and because it doesn't buy work, that work isn't done. It is the amount of work that is done (or, more correctly, the amount of value that is produced) that is the measure of an economy. So money not circulating fails to cause economic activity, and as a consequence the economy shrinks. Money is just numbers if it's sitting in a bank account. It's only when it's in motion that it creates value.
BTW, when you start out a rejoinder in an argument by saying "utter nonsense," this is a useful indication that whatever follows will be as advertised. You might want to consider that when you're engaging in debate with people who don't already agree with you.
This is a widely held belief about inflation that is true in some cases and not in others. It's frustrating that people feel the need to oversimplify to the point of meaninglessness. The world is not a computer program.
When a substantial portion of the money supply is out of circulation, printing money taxes that out of circulation money and gets it back into circulation, which can grow the economy. So while the effect you describe exists, it is not the only effect that must be accounted for. When the bulk of money in the economy is not circulating, the economy shrinks, and that's at least as damaging as the value of money shrinking.
Actually we can. The problem with your reasoning is that it presumes that money is given in exchange for work of equal value, but of course the very basis of business is that you pay less than what the work is worth, and the difference is your profit. So this notion of a 1:1 connection between money and value is simply mistaken, and not only that, it's impossible in a capitalist society. In a society where the disparity between pay and profit is as large as it is in ours, it's nonsensical to talk about money this way. Granted, I'm only pulling one thread out of the tangle here, but hopefully it's illustrative.
You say "the real reason" as if there could only ever be one reason for doing something...