A few clicks south and about 10 more west you'll run into a town called "Maple Grove."
Well, there really isn't a town or veritable "city center" there, but that geographical location is called "Maple Grove."
Maple Grove, for the most part, is inconsequential to yours, mine, or anybody else's life. But there is an important economic lesson to pull from it that is consequential to our lives. And that lesson is what the entire American economy is slowly morphing into.
Understand that Maple Grove did not exist at all of 10 years ago. When I was in college it was where the city and suburbs ended and farmland began. But 10 years ago, overnight seemingly, it burst into a large sprawled out, multi-mega-strip mall area. It now covers about 5 times the surface area of the Mall of America, has (by my ballpark estimation) more retail space and outlets than the MOA, and if it doesn't already, it will have more restaurants than the MOA. If you name a chain restaurant, a national retailer, or any kind of American brand name, Maple Grove has it.
When this massive development first went in, my economic spidey senses tingled at the back of my mind. I couldn't understand it on several levels. One, where was the city center? Why did all these stores and retail outlets just open up in this area? Was there some center of commerce I was unaware of that economically warranted such a development? Two, who the hell would go there? It was the epitome of cookie cutter. There was not ONE unique restaurant in the entire area. Just Applebee's after Houlihans after California Pizza Kitchen, after Joe's Crab Shack. Only the most boring, SWPL, mindless suburban automotons would patronize the place, and I didn't think there was a high enough SWPL population make all those businesses financially viable. Three, by god, there was a high enough SWPL population to make it financially viable. HOW??? How could there be that many milquetoast people? There's enough flavorless people in the area to make this a go??? But the key thing that was tickling the back of my brain, but never made it to the frontal lobes until last week was;
Where is all the production? How does this purely retail economy exist? How is this supportable in the long run?
And thus the important economic lesson.
Realize that in the Maple Grove economic nothing is produced. Only consumed. There are no factories, no assemblies, no plants. It is 100% pure, cookie cutter retail. Maple Grove's "Municipal Gross Product" is 100% retail clerks, waiters, bartenders and baristas selling you things that are made outside of its city limits. It is the first entire city that is solely dependent upon retail and would not exist otherwise.
But while Maple Grove effectively only serves as a large sprawled out mall, it is a microcosm of what is in store for the American economy. A fate where we slowly switch from that of a industrial, productive economy where actual things of value are produced to one where we merely become...
one big ass mall.
Already this is happening to a certain extent globally. The West, including America, the UK, and western Europe act like the world's mega-malls. China, SE Asia, India and nearly all other 2nd world serve as our factories. And the debutantes of western society act likes spoiled suburbanite princesses, borrowing money from daddy (China and other creditors) so they can buy worthless, meaningless crap that only serves to play an unwinnable status game in the West. However, equilibrium is universal, and no unsustainable system can survive. And thus, just like Maple Grove or a suburbanite princess cannot maintain their parasitical existence without the constant supply of foreign made goods (and credit), so too will the American economy inevitably collapse.
Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, and maybe not even next year, but the time will come that China, Japan, the Arab nations and other creditors will realize that America is just a mall, it's people suburbanite princesses, and that we really don't produce anything of value here. Once that happens, the dollar will drop in value, nobody will lend us any more money, and unfathomable amount of economic hurt will slam into our increasingly spoiled and delusional people. Adult-children more concerned about privilege, falsely claiming PSTD, the earnings gap, or the Kardashians will be blindsided as society is no longer concerned about their petty, politically drummed up drama, but rather why there is no electricity, why gas is up to $5 a gallon, and why their bank accounts were haircutted. Their primary concern won't be whether they can live at home, but whether mom and dad can even afford food for the week. And they're going to be begging and pleading to work as a barista as Starbucks lays off 70% of its labor force because nobody can afford a $7 cup of coffee.
Of course, this is already happening to a certain extent already. Matter of fact, I'm surprised our foreign creditors hadn't dumped the US dollar sooner. But they are, and the "factory" of the world is slowly realizing the US for the financial deadbeat that it is and switching out of US dollars, increasing reserves in gold and other currencies. We are now engaging in thinly-veiled inflationary hanky-panking with our "quantitative easing" as one last final desperate ruse to make it seem like everything is normal. This is nothing more than daddy going to the bank to secure one last desperate Keynesian loan to keep his trophy wife and princess happy and spending, "hopefully turning the economy around."
But it won't work. And the reason is simple. No economy can exist purely on consumption. It needs to produce something of value. And while Keynesians, economic professors, and idiot presidents may tell you otherwise, in the end you are foolish to believe them, just as you would be foolish to believe Maple Grove is a self-sustaining economy.
Consider that next time you order the chicken quesadillas at Applebee's while celebrating a hard day of shopping for a new Korean-made smart phone and an Indonesian-made scarf in "The MG."
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