A Short Treatise on Time Shares and Hard Times

In a moment of weakness, Maxx and I went to a time-share presentation. It wasn’t horrible, and we got some lovely parting gifts, but it did go on and on…and on and on. The goal, of course, was to grind us down to the point where a terrible investment looked like a good one. Never happened, but whatever…

The thing that struck me is that we had 14 different people dealing with us at one time or another. That’s a LOT of wages to pay, not to mention the lovely parting gifts, transportation, meal, facilities, etc. It’s an expensive proposition, trying to get the suckers to sign on the line that is dotted, and it must work well enough to pay for all that overhead, because this organization was doing a TON of presentations. Guess there are a lot of suckers out there. Well, no news flash that.

Economically it makes sense. You’re bringing in fresh money from outside the state of Quintana Roo, and if you can do that on a consistent and ongoing basis — which you can when you’re a tourist destination like Cancun — then you have a thriving economy. And this, of course, is exactly the pickle America is in right now. Where is our source of outside revenue? China is lending us money like crazy, but that doesn’t build an economy. We have tourists, but not enough to impact our economy. And what we make and sell overseas can’t compete against what everyone else makes and sells overseas. So we end up with a pretty closed economy. It’s just us selling to us and us buying from us. Whence comes our growth?

As I’ve blogged before, I think it’ll get worse, for globalization is creating a globally closed economy. When we all become citizens of the world, it’ll all be just us selling to us and us buying from us. We really need the Martians now. Specifically, we need Martian tourists — lots and lots of them who have never been to Disneyland and don’t mind paying inflated prices because the Martian Glorx is such a strong currency right now.

Of course, if that happened, if Earth became an acclaimed tourist destination, then we’d be reduced to hustling the Martians for time-shares (“Tierra del Fuego is lovely ANY time of year!”) and that might not be so good.

I don’t know where I’m going with any of this. It’s been a solid week of nothing but sun, sand, reading, shelling, swimming, quaffing umbrella drinks and stewing in my own juices. My brain is a little cheesed. Well, it must be if I thought that visiting a time-share presentation was in any way a good idea.

At least I didn’t sign on the line that was dotted.

More later, -jv

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