One of the advantages of being a Big Picture guy is that when you survey the world from this more-distant perspective it becomes very clear (and simple) when it comes to identifying major trends. Further aiding this process are distinct patterns in human behavior, which tell us what we should expect to see in different scenarios.
In this case, the subject is the collapse in theater revenues in North America. Here it’s important to note two important traits of movie-going as an entertainment option:
1) It is still a (relatively) low-cost entertainment option for families or couples.
2) It is a preferred option for escapism – in times of high stress/anxiety.
What (1) tells us is that going to the movies is what is known in economics as “an inferior good.” Here the word “inferior” refers only to the good being cheap, and is not a value-judgment regarding quality.
The significance of “inferior goods” in economics is that as people get poorer they consume more of that good rather than less of it. The most-common example is ground beef. Affluent people consume very little ground beef, but the poorer you get, the more hamburger you eat…up to a point.
Even with ground beef, there comes a level of poverty where even that “inferior good” is no longer affordable. So we see with the purchase of theater tickets. The Working Poor have now gotten so poor that even “going to the movies” is now (at best) an occasional luxury.
What makes the collapse in theater revenues in North America even more alarming is that movies are also “escapist” entertainment, meaning that the more stressed-out that people are, the higher movie revenues should be expected to go. Living in the Age of Fear, where North American serfs have willingly surrendered a lot of their rights in return for a little “security”; we would (again) expect movie-going to be on the rise.
So when we take all these factors into account, and then read in Reuters that North American theater revenues have plunged to their lowest level since “9/11” (and the beginning of the Age of Fear); what we see being described are unequivocally Depression conditions. The Working Poor are now so poor that even inferior goods can only be purchased in smaller quantities; as opposed to being “normally” poor and being able to afford to purchase this inferior good in increasing quantities.
Now factor in inflation. Revenues (unadjusted for inflation) are less than they were 10 years ago. Meanwhile, bankster money-printing has eroded more than half of our purchasing-power over that time – meaning that in real dollars spending on movies has plummeted by more than half.
With unemployment steadily rising and incomes relentlessly falling (thanks to “competitive devaluation”), our economies are all in death-spirals. Unless/until we elect governments who start serving the people rather than raping the people; the only possible outcome is the total collapse/destruction of our economies…at which point (one way or the other) we will have new government.
Movies suffer worst box-office slump in a decade
(Reuters) – The North American box office hit a slump at the weekend, with the top earner “The Possession” taking in less than $10 million and what could be the gloomiest overall haul since the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington…