Each of those early reporters 'hedged' their stats with high hopes for Cyber Monday to be the difference maker. It wasn't, sales online Monday were up between 8% and 16% depending on who you ask. But Cyber Monday, though growing, is a much smaller affair than the bricks and mortar businesses and every pundit spinning that 'impossible dream' knows it full well. Online sales were $2-$3 billion on Monday, a healthy increase over last year, but in aggragate over the 4 days folks, both online and in-line, spent !0.2% less than last year. None of the numbers considers that the population is growing so per-capita numbers are even lower. The moaning you hear comes from your local chapter of the Bankers and Billionaires Club.
All these numbers really show is that aggragate demand for needless crap is falling. How many big screen TVs does anyone need? How much bling? These numbers are about over-consumption, about wants not needs. The demand for needless crap consumers want is inverse to their economic fears just as it is to GHG production. The demand for needs stays fairly flat regardless of the spin or the moaning.
The demand for needless crap will level off too over time. The 'aggragate' number of folks who've realized that bread and beans trump bankers and billionaires will by that point have changed the capitalist world. "In short", as Ron Paul says. "deflation is at least potentially a great liberating force. It not only brings the inflated monetary system back to rock bottom, it brings the entire society back in touch with the real world, because it destroys the economic basis of the social engineers, spin doctors, and brain washers."
Deflation can be a liberating force economically, but even more powerfully, the coming era mild deflation will be a liberating force for the spirits of those who have long searched for a non-violent avenue to meaningful change to our economy, to our environmental destruction and most importantly, to the rogue primate's worldview.