Short one and them I'm going.
Filled in for a buddy of mine who runs a security company last night. I worked this gig before. Basically baby sitting the adult children of DT Minneapolis as they are released from the night clubs around 2AM to make sure they don't puke, urinate or fight too much on the client's parking ramps.
There are multiple ramps, but we meet at one to get radios, any kind of briefing about the evening and whatnot. Once I met with all the other guards, I was enroute to the ramp I was assigned. As I went downstairs from the "HQ" ramp I noticed a soda machine missing in the hallway that was there a no more than a year ago. Last I saw it, however, it was tipped over as some of the local nightclubbers tipped it over. Naturally the owner of the soda machine removed it since it was not profitable and was only going to get damaged.
Immediately my brain (which is gifted with SAEG - TM) realized what economic phenomenon I was witnessing.
You see, it doesn't have to be the entire productive class fleeing France thanks for Hollande's 75% confiscation tax. Nor does it have to be Zimbabwean's money flowing out of the country to invest in western companies' stock as a hyper-inflationary hedge.
Capital flight can be as simple as something as somebody deciding to move their sole soda machine out of DT Minneapolis. It was obvious s/he wasn't going to make any money. It was obvious the locals and club goers were not going to respect their property. It was obvious there was no reason to put a soda machine there.
But what i really like about the now-missing soda machine is the "empty shelves of communism" aspect of it. Admittedly, it was only one soda machine, but economically it was NO DIFFERENT than an entire grocery store whose shelves were empty. What's better is who does it hurt? If you think about it, it's the night-clubbers. They now no longer have the opportunity to enjoy a soda as they stumble their way back to their cars.
Of course this microscopic economic phenomenon was unnoticeable to the drunk thugs and dregs of society as they walked by. And that's another thing I like about the missing soda machine. It's silent, it's clandestine, you don't notice it. It's the reason why neighborhoods, cities and countries don't just "collapse" overnight going form pristine, vibrant communities with economic growth and low unemployment to the ghetto. It's why they slowly, deteriorate and die out, the deterioration of which is unperceivable to the naked human eye. It's also why people wake up one day and start asking, "what happened to this community? Do you remember when it was nice."
Perhaps disappearing Coke machines is what gives economic rats like me the foresight to flee sinking ships.