The Costs of Dragon Maintenance

The next time you:

  • Pay your mortgage, which is mostly interest;
  • Pay your outrageously large auto or student loan;
  • Pay an exorbitant amount for health insurance;
  • Pay an even larger co-pay for a minor hospital procedure;
  • Buy groceries for $100 and compare that purchase to what $100 bought in 1971;
  • Realize that a four person family’s share of the U. S. national debt is nearly one-quarter million dollars …

Consider the costs of fiat paper currencies, deficit spending, central banking and … dragon maintenance.


A long time ago and far, far away outlaws raided a village and stole food, gold and women. The angry villagers could do little to protect their village except pray to their gods.

A large and fearsome dragon descended into the village square answering their prayers. The dragon agreed to protect the village in return for food.

Everyone was afraid of the dragon’s sharp claws and its fiery breath which incinerated those who threatened the dragon or the village. Raiders avoided the village.

The people rejoiced in their new safety but worried the dragon ate too much food.

Problems developed after several years.


  • The village council went deeply into debt paying for dragon food. They also raised taxes and printed an excessive amount of paper money which increased all consumer prices. This angered the residents.
  • Farmers increased food prices even higher because of the greater demand for dragon food. Residents grumbled about higher food costs.
  • The village council hired public relations specialists to convince the people that dragon maintenance was necessary. The extra employment was helpful, but the village council went deeper into debt paying the new employees.
  • Economic activity declined because the cost of capital tripled.
  • The village grew poorer, and everyone suffered as their cost of living increased. In many respects they were worse off than before the dragon arrived.
  • After a drought and partial crop failure, prices for wheat tripled and the dragon grew hungry and cranky. He ate three village residents.

The villagers met and demanded the council banish the dragon because dragon maintenance was too costly. They ordered the Mayor to roust the dragon and send it elsewhere. The Mayor promptly resigned.

People escaped to other towns, and the village deteriorated culturally and economically as it sunk into poverty.

The village council fed mal-contents and old people to the dragon when the council could not afford other food.

Soon everyone feared the village council would declare them dragon food. Most people fled the village except for members of the council who were confident the dragon would protect, but not eat, them.

They were mistaken.

The dragon ate roasted councilmen for dinner, burned the village to the ground and flew away, searching for another village that wanted protection.


The village had survived for hundreds of years but it died not long after the dragon arrived.

However the village existed a long distance away from the United States and the dragon maintenance saga happened before the world developed central banking, fiat paper money, deficit spending, ever-increasing debt, High Frequency Trading, derivatives, Quantitative Easing, PhD Keynesian economists and career politicians who manage our nations … so don’t worry … about dragon maintenance.


Gary Christenson

The Deviant Investor

12 thoughts on “The Costs of Dragon Maintenance

  1. Would anyone know why the debt clock on this site has now passed the $20T mark but the “Debt Clock” for the US is still below this mark?

  2. It’s a great story..ancient indeed…one of which appears to have no beginning nor end????? Or does it? I am not sure. Is the flavor of this story pointing at non-theism?

  3. Interesting that Gary Christenson uses the word “dragon” exactly the way my wife does, as a term for the wealth-sucking parasite the financial system has become. Catherine Austin Fitts uses the words “tapeworm” and “tapeworm economics” for the same concept. Either way, is this a hundredth-monkey meme whose day has arrived? It is still shocking how many people remain clueless about the effect the dragon has on their lives, or that they would suddenly be wealthy beyond their dreams if they could banish the dragon.

  4. Hey Gary great story, can’t wait until the Dragon comes.
    over 300 million here ! and over 7 billion in the world. No sweat the dragon will be happy.
    I’m still happy.

  5. Mr. Christenson. If you ever come to knowing what money really is, i.e. “an in-process promise to complete a trade over time and space”, will you revise your essay to properly discuss the issues?

    Regarding insurance: Have you ever looked at an FHA backed mortgage loan contract (but I misspeak … it’s a promise to complete a trade over time and space … created by the trader)? It dictates that you “must” maintain “replacement cost insurance” to protect the lender for the term of the loan. If you don’t, the lender can purchase it and make you pay for it. And the “lender” purchases it from his “own” insurance company (see Wells Fargo).

    Now look at the premium for that insurance. Actuarially it says there is a 30% chance your house will be destroyed completely over that 30 year period. What’s been your experience? Mine is that not a single house has been destroyed within a five mile radius of where I live over my 70+ year lifetime.

    And they’re able to run this con even though it’s provable their risk is non-existent toward the end of the so-called “loan’s” term.

    You morons who are so clueless about money seem to be clueless about everything.

    • You are absolutely correct regarding the parasitic insurance companies. In 2009, in Detroit, the replacement value insurance on an old mansion (3,000+ square feet, 5 or more BRs) was as much as 25% of the price of the house (property values dropped precipitously then)! And clearly the odds were not that the house would be destroyed in 4 years!

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