Globalized Supply Chain Complexity and Other Variables

LONDON - England - Due to globalization, any single disruption in the supply chain can cause major problems for distribution.

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Every product you buy has multiple chains of supply, and sub-chains that determine how long it takes for the consumer at the end of the line receives the merchandise he desires. Like, everyone knows that, right? It’s not rocket science that every iPhone is constructed in China with components from over 80 countries, and if anywhere down that multi-layered line something goes wrong, it’s either source the component from somewhere else at huge cost and logistics, or go tits up.

It’s not only the production line that has to think of supply chains but the services that supply the goods in the first place, right along to the energy and utility companies who provide energy for all this to take place, each component in the line needs its own supply chains, and naturally we see that there will be problems if only a single component goes down. Much like a domino effect, the disruption to the system is immense. To save space, some companies even plan deliveries for their production lines at specific times in the production of whatever they are manufacturing. Well, due to disruptions in the supply chains, what happens if that certain component you need to manufacture the product does not turn up? The whole factory is on stand-by.

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An elderly woman stares at empty supermarket shelves, London, England (twitter)

The empty shelves you may see in your supermarkets could be down to panic buying but also from supply chain problems, and due to the global pandemic, this is why we have empty shelves and containers full of product at the ports.

Each level of the supply chain for any given product or utility has multiple supply chains, all of these supply chains branching out from within supply chains, onto massive chains of supply chains that interlock at certain points, meandering through the system like bronchial passages, or arteries through the body. Blockages in arteries are never a good thing, they could lead to death, as is the case with blockages of supply chains.

This is the ultimate weakness of globalization, especially with the financial markets, where one singular economic event in one part of the world can cause massive tremors to the entire market. From the farmers to the supermarkets, to the commodities markets, the repercussions of supply line mishaps can affect multiple variables simultaneously causing effects to ripple outwards, even affecting the entire system if it is allowed to get worse.

Inflation, hyperinflation and the engineered stock market through the printing of money is a disease that now threatens to engulf the entire economic system built on debt to collapse eventually. How long can the respective treasury departments kick their cans down the road?

The future under this broken fiat currency system is one of hyperinflation, stagflation, and dragflation. There will be no end to the destruction, simply because the people who are running the system are now running out of ideas on how to avert the inevitable. Chiefly, the Federal Reserve of America, which at some point will not be able to service the accrued debt payments for the United States. Increasing interest rates will only increase the velocity of the destruction of the economy, and drag many under.

This may even be the penultimate entrance of the post-consumer era, where the excesses of the past will be all but forgotten dreams. Remember when we had supermarket shelves full of various different products, like thirty different types of raspberry jam, and forty different brands of dishwasher tablets?

The global pandemic will continue, and people who think one day the virus will stop mutating, or will not increase its efficiency in killing, are sadly deluded. Yes, globalization was good for distribution, but as mentioned before, what do you do when half the truck drivers are either sick or dead? What about specialist engineers, you can’t just train anyone to replace people who have trained for years, and gained the necessary experience to run things in the correct manner?

Each level of the chain has their specialists, who are highly trained/experienced operatives within their field of expertise, when they’re sick or dead — good luck in a suitable replacement.

The sprockets, the microchips, the raw materials mined to eventually manufacture specialist rare earth products for the computer industry are all intertwined, and thus vulnerable to supply chain problems.

Furthermore, we may be globalized, but the supply chain can also be further disrupted by border disputes, by wars, and other variables pertaining to political/national conflict.

Folks, this shit will continue for the next decade or so…