Anyone considering a career in politics shouldn't worry about a university education or a degree in this subject or that, they shouldn't worry either about gaining experience in business, the military or any other career on life's rich highway; the important thing for them to remember is.........nothing at all.
Whatever one has learned prior to entering the twilight world of the political class is redundant; all learning and experience should be filed away in some dark recess of the mind, or better still, forgotten altogether in case it interferes with the acquisition of stupidity that is the only qualification necessary for a politician.
Politicians at any level, whether local, national or supra-nation all live in a parallel universe where the laws that make the real word go around, and which govern the lives of us mortals, do not apply.
Even the insight of two of the greatest geniuses of the twentieth century has had no effect whatsoever on the behavior of this spectacularly imbecilic group.
"Those that cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" - George Santayana
"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results" - Albert Einstein
The latest casualty of economic incompetence is the American dependency of Puerto Rico. They join an ever growing list of scrounging states that rely on a begging bowl to keep them in the unaffordable style to which they have become accustomed.
In the recent past, advanced economies from all the continents, some of which are rich in natural resources, have gone bust due to incompetent, ideologically driven politicians repeating the same tax and spend policies that have proved disastrous throughout recorded history.
Argentina, Venezuela and Paraguay from South America,
Angola, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Zimbabwe from Africa
Europe is represented in this economic illiteracy Hall of Fame by Greece, Cyprus, Italy and Ireland with Spain and Portugal knocking on the door.
Maybe we should add a third genius more fitting to today's political class:
"Stupid is as stupid does" - Forrest Gump
The politicians from all these countries, and others, have behaved in a manner that would have landed 'we the people' in jail. They spend more than they take in revenue knowing full well that the consequences of their criminal behavior will end in bankruptcy, poverty and misery for the many.......it always does.
They also know full well that they themselves are immune from the consequences of their criminal behavior and, if past experience is anything to go by, they will avoid jail and be feted around the world instead, as well remunerated elder statesmen enjoying whats left of other peoples livelihoods.
One of the irresponsible policies that helped put the Puerto Rican economy into a tailspin was the introduction of a minimum wage. Despite masses of empirical evidence that disastrous consequences always ensue from this interference in the market, they proceeded anyway.
In fact, the minimum wage, which in some countries has gone one step further and morphed into a 'living wage', is now the standard policy of most governments, even supposedly conservative ones like Great Britain and the USA.
It is worth noting at this point that the minimum wage, like overseas development aid and combating climate change is an international requirement emanating from the UN; despite its disastrous consequences; no 'progressive' politicians worth their salt will argue against it for fear of tarnishing their international credentials and putting any future sinecure in jeopardy.
The warnings that imposing the federal minimum wage on Puerto Rican businesses would result in bankruptcies, price increases, job losses and the migration of talent to the mainland United States, was studiously ignored by the politicians.
And so it came to pass and the predicted collapse followed like night follows day. Next came the loss of tax revenue to pay for all the 'free stuff' and then the inevitable increases in taxation along with further stagnation and the downward spiral.
This didn't suddenly happen overnight, the politicians, and anyone else with an ounce of common sense, knew it was coming months, even years ago, but they carried on regardless driving the economy into the ground with their tax, spend, borrow and debt policy because they don't have the guts or the spine to stop it.
The lenders must also accept their part in this disaster, be they governments, corporations or private individuals. Governments and corporations know before lending that default is likely therefore they are not helping by their indulgence. Governments don't care of course because it's only taxpayer's money they are throwing away and there's plenty more more where that came from.
In conclusion: As all informed people across the planet know to their cost, what has happened in Puerto Rico is nothing new, it has happened before and it will happen again. Like the politicians of Greece, Venezuela and the rest of the countries mentioned above, they will promise lots of 'free stuff' to secure their grip on power and to satisfy their perverted ideologies.
Unless the people wake up and take action it won't end until all the countries on the planet have lent and borrowed themselves into oblivion and global equality, along with equal misery, will have arrived at last.