There is a vibrant underground economy here at Bastrop Federal Satellite Camp with every inmate being a producer and/or a consumer. I'm primarily a consumer even though I am an unlicensed hair care professional in our barbershop. This is because, as we all know, "haircuts be free."
Most of the corrections officers who supervise the camp have a somewhat laissez faire regulatory attitude as long as the economy doesn't get out of hand or make them look bad. They seem to inadvertently enforce the "pigs get fat while hogs get slaughtered" rule which is pragmatic and effective. However we recently had a rookie replacement for the 4:00pm to 12:00am regular officer. I say he's a rookie because he appeared to be approaching 19 years old. While he was supposed to be putting up our daily mail, the overachieving young man decided to search lockers. He unfortunately stumbled upon the mother load when he randomly hit the locker of our best bathroom chef. Sadly the bathroom chef was taken to the Special Housing Unit (SHU), and nobody knows when he'll return, if ever. I'll describe what I know about the SHU in my next post.
From his locker were taken onions, peppers, tomatoes, sausages, cheese, pepperoni, 12 bags of chips, a cheese grater and knife, all types of seasonings, a roll of quarters, a few dollar bills and 40 books of stamps. Yes, that's 800 stamps. All these things simply vanished, at least from our world. This would be the equivalent of waking up to find that Wal-Mart, McDonalds, and Bank of America had all gone away during the night, and the Fed responded by reducing instead of expanding the money supply.
There will be an economic ripple effect on the GDP of BFSC, as some consumers had prepaid for goods and services with goods and services. While other entrepreneurs may attempt to capitalize on the supply/demand imbalance, it will take weeks for them to build the necessary raw material supply chain and inventory required to produce the bathroom food that many desire and depend upon for their dietary needs. Our economy will also have to overcome the sudden human capital shortfall with the lack of those with the expertise to turn bartered or stolen ingredients into tasty pizza, stromboli, nachos, and gourmet bagel sandwiches. No doubt stamps will now be more expensive on the secondary market.
This is tragic, and the impact will be severe.