Don’t Tumble Down To Their Level: If You Argue With An Idiot, Then You Create Two Idiots

Heard something about the economy that made your jaw hit the floor? Don’t stoop-down to their level, or when the chickens come home to roost…

by Simon Popple of Brookville Capital

I’m sure we’ve all found ourselves in a situation where someone’s said something that’s made our jaw hit the floor. The comment being so ridiculous, you don’t know where to start.


If you’re lucky you can make a graceful exit, leaving the situation to someone else. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.


If you’re left with them, it can go downhill rather quickly.


Because if you argue with an idiot, you can rapidly become one yourself. Rather than rising above, you find yourself tumbling to their level.


Anyone listening could be forgiven for assuming you’re both idiots.


You’re probably wondering where I’m going with this.


Let me explain.


Every action has a consequence.


Some can be imminent – try stepping in front of a bus. Others take much longer to transpire – if you reduce your savings for retirement – it won’t impact you for a while, potentially a long time. But it will.


At some point there is a consequence to any previous action.


Right now, there’s a lot going on in the world. A trade war with China as well as rapidly escalating debt – to name just two.


There will be consequences to both of these. Perhaps not tomorrow. But you’ll feel like a bit of an idiot when the chickens come home to roost and you’ve done nothing.


That’s the rub.


Because nothing’s happened so far. Many, in fact most, assume nothing will.


You’ve done nothing wrong. But you’ve done nothing. That’s the problem.


Think about the escalating debt. On a personal basis you can increase your mortgage, get some credit cards and take out an overdraft. But at some point, you’ll run out of road.


Corporations are much the same.


But countries can do it for much longer. Especially if they can print their own money. The “can” keeps getting kicked down the road. It’s a much longer road. But all roads come to an end.


Take a look at this graph.

Every time the US debt ceiling gets raised (the black line). The can gets kicked.


Ultimately, there will be a consequence.


The trade war with China will have massive consequences – for all of us. But because the impact could be months away, it’s not an issue right now.


But it will be, so it makes sense to prepare.


Anyway, back to our idiot.


Because of the time lag between cause and effect, no-one cares (including our “idiot”). But they should.


If you get into a discussion on the matter, you’ll probably be quite surprised by the level of indifference – The government will deal with it.




The government want your vote. But that’s all they want.


You only have one (the same as our “idiot”).


My point is simple. Whether you prepare or don’t – you still have one vote.


As far as any government’s concerned, you’re the same.


Let’s press the fast forward button.


When we eventually run out of road, the vast majority will be unprepared. Which side do you think the politicians will side with? Don’t expect any help.


You’ll be on your own.


But you can prepare. Even if you choose to try and protect only a fraction of what you’ve earned. It surely makes sense to do something.


Otherwise you’ll probably feel like a bit of an idiot – you’ll have let yourself get dragged down to that level – thinking there won’t be a consequence.


But you know there will.


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