manfrommiddletown's blog

Yet Another Bubble on the Horizon: Commodities

We live in an age of bubbles. I suppose that this should come as no surprise.

The Greek roots of the word "economy" are oikos and nomia. The former meaning household, and the latter its management. For most of human history, this has been the purpose of the economy, to provide the means of subsistence by which a people survive. Karl Polanyi, the author of The Great Transformation wrote in the midst of the Second World War about how the market may behave like a type of cancer. Economic activity and the production of profit is seen as an end unto itself, rather than simply the means by which societies produce the means by which they exist. And in doing so it unleashes what Polanyi called the "double movement."