Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Trade

When you trade (swap things), or have a trade (do tasks), the rules of supply and demand are pretty clear. Markets work best when there is a countable thing involved. They work best when there are enough competitors to keep each other honest. They work best when the barriers to entry are low enough, that new competitors can reduce excessive profits. When regulation protects the stakeholders rather than those big enough to afford the paperwork to comply. They work best when barriers to exit are low enough, so sunk costs don't trap you in a business that should really die. As economies shift away from manufacturing to the knowledge and service industries, it gets much more complicated, ambiguous and random. It boils down to storytelling. If you tell a good story that connects to an individual, all the other rules fall away. That makes me uncomfortable in an unconnected world without the constraints of permanent relationships. The clarity of a trade is very appealing.

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