Prices for comics and inflation in the USA
Do you like comics? I guess many of people says: "Yes!" though there are of those who call comics chewing gum for not bright persons. Personally I do not read (is it the right word "read"?) comics but I am person from other century and from other society - I was born in the Soviet Union in last century, I had gotten education in the Soviet education system (do you know that the Soviet education system was the best in the world? No? But who was the first to launch into cosmic space a man? No, ragazzi, avete zbaliati as said Carlo Colloddi in his story about Pinocchio, not America, that was the country USSR). There were no comics in the USSR, all people read books Dostoevsky, Chekhov, Tolstoy, Pushkin and other classics - maybe that was the reason why it was so hard to buy books of those authors.
Well, I am not used to comics but I think that if so many people read comics this is their choice (I can not resists to add acid remarks - as the choice to smoke, drink etc.). Now American comics are very popular in Russia, there are may fans of Spider-man, Captain America, Iron man, X-men, The Mutants. My elder sun has a part work at the book shop which sells all kinds of comics - new and old, American and European. They got somehow plenty of old American comics published in later 70-s and sell them. They say that business is great though this is relative concept.
Once my son selecting new arrivals of old American comics paid attention at prices. He was amazed to know that Spider-man cost in 1972 only 25 cents. Then he realized that with time prices for the comics (the same by name, by quality of printing, by size of the editions) changed. Here is a primitive chart of rices for some comics of Marvel company (why Marvel? Because at that moment there was good selction of comics) :
1976 - 30 cents
1987 - 75 cents
1992 - $1.25
1989 - 75 cents
1990 - $1
1993 - $1.25
1985 - 65 cents
1986 - 75 cents
1989 - $1
So what is the reaction of the inquisitive mind reading these figures? I suppose that all good boys and girls with inquisitive minds mat ask why the prices had changed with time? The answer is obvious - inflation. What is inflation? Read in the dictionary: "Inflation is a persistent, substantial rise in the general level of prices related to an increase in the volume of money and resulting in the loss of value of currency" Do you understand it? Me not, especially the words "persistent" and "substantial". Here are more questions: "Why does volume of money increase?" "Who does increase volume of money?" "Why does money lost value?"
The answers are not so evident. In the USA the private company with the deceptive name "Federal Reserve" issues and prints money and then borrows to Government of the United States of America. So the dollar of the USA is not the currency of the USA, it is currency of private company even in its name there is the word "Federal". Do you hear, Americans? You do not have your national currency.
Well, let's see what happens later. The FR borrows to the Government, let's say 1000 dollars (OK, let's them consider to be dollars of the USA) under terms to return back $1050. OK, $1000 can be returned but where to get extra $50? To borrow from the Federal Reserve private company! So easy and simply! But how to cover the difference in 5%? This is simply too - to take it from those who buy comics. And fuel, food, electricity, chewing gum, cars, condoms, lawn mowers, houses, shoes, toothpaste, service of doctors, lawyers and so on. Poor Government is between the upper and the nether millstone - from one side it is in permanent debts, on other side it is permanent put its hands into the pockets of citizens.
OK, let's return to our chart with prices for some comics. Now we can count the real (not official, pretended) inflation.
Captain America - changes for 16 years in 4 times, that is 25% per year
Iron man - changes for 4 years in 1.6 times, that is 40% per year
The Mutants - changes for 4 years in 1.5 times, that is 37% per year
You will say that this is not correct counting, the value of the comics depends on popularity, new ideas, demands. Yes, I agree. But in the end customers pays at least at 25% more each year! This is the true inflation, this is what each American pays not depending buys she/he comics or not.
P.S. All these counting and all conclusions are for fun, for joke, this is far from real serious economics which is studied at Harvard University by Mr. Friedman and Co. Except one thing - prices for comics are real.
Today we have a chance to visit a small town Vyritsa located about 60 km away from St.Petersburg on the small river Oredezh.
There was once upon a time an old man and an old woman, and they had three sons ; two were clever, but the third was a fool.
Do you like comics? I guess many of people says: "Yes!" though there are of those who call comics chewing gum for not bright persons.
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