In part 1 of this essay series, I used Keynesian economics to define the major economic problems facing Westeros. The major issues characterized in part 1 were the lack of a central liquidity vendor, major debts, ineffective demand cycles, inefficient population distribution, and instability in the Riverlands. In part 2, I will make proposals to address these problems.
I will suggest the effects of these proposals to the Westerosi economy through the methodology of the 3 equations model, which is a modern expansion on Keynesian thinking that will more accurately reflect why and how these proposals will be beneficial to the Westerosi economy. So, what is the 3-equations model?
Part 1: An Analysis of Economic Problems Facing Westeros
by K.w. Dent
Westeros has been economically stagnant for thousands of years. Since the Age of Heroes the infrastructure, finances, and prosperity of the realm have crawled along with only incremental advances that benefit the populous. So, what disease is Westeros suffering from?
In this essay, I will define the economic problems facing Westeros and provide policy proposals that will lead to a more optimal steady state for the Westerosi economy. In Part 1 of this essay series, I will begin by using Keynesian Demand Economics to explore the more systemic issues facing the economy of the Seven Kingdoms.
To achieve that end, in Part 2, I will build on Keynesian Economics by using the 3-equations model to provide context for economic implications on policy. Both of these models will portray why and how certain policies will move the economy of Westeros to a more optimal steady state.
But before we get to the problems facing Westeros, let’s take a brief look at the history of the methodology.
As you may or may not know, Wars and Politics of Ice and Fire has its own Tumblr page (as well as its own Twitter and Facebook pages). Even more excitingly, we here at the blog have partnered with ASOIAF University to answer questions about A Song of Ice and Fire. We – that is, SomethingLikeaLawyer and I – take the text-based questions submitted to us, write up thoughtful, text-based answers, and publish these answers on the Tumblr.
Another productive week for us in the Tumblr-verse. The Hand always has the best answers to meta questions because he is all kinds of brilliant, and his answer to favorite aspects of ASOIAF warfare is no exception. Just as well, the Hand tackled the false assertion that the Freys were justified in enacting the Red Wedding, and dreamed up some excellent alternate histories about Aegon IV dying before the follies of his reign and Jaime Lannister protecting Elia Martell. As for me, I wrote another essay – The Windblown Grass, all about terrible strategist Doran Martell – thought up some Blackfyre words, and added a defining character moment for Theon to Tumblr friend Poor Quentyn’s excellent post to the same.
Part 1 dealt with storylines we thought were the best in Season 5, but for every good storyline, there’s always the bad one (the bad pussy one). Today’s podcast episode delves into the worst storylines of Season 5. From underwhelming battles to poor dialogue to convoluted motivations, we explore:
The Boltons: the sole Northern House in Season 5
Stannis’ tell-don’t-show march on Winterfell
Brienne the Candlewoman
The Coming Mask Making Industry Bubble in Meereen
Jorah Connington’s/Varys’ travels with Tyrion
But instead of criticizing the show, we offer ideas to make it better. At the end, we give a few thoughts on where we think Season 6 might go!
Agree or disagree, and let us know your thoughts on Season 5 and what you would have done to improve it in the comments below!
Game of Thrones Season 5 is the most controversial season of the show so far. Many factors went into this. Whether it was the show perhaps passing the books in some storylines, the show’s deviation from the source material or the way that the show adapted scenes from the books, fans had mixed reactions to the season. In this podcast episode, we delve into Season 5. But instead of simply hating on the show, we talk about the parts of the season that we liked. And we liked some of it quite a lot. But there was some that we didn’t like.
In this 1st of 2 parts, we talk about 3 locations, the 3 locations that we thought had the best plot-points from Season 5:
King’s Landing: Cersei & the Tyrells, the Faith Militant, Tommen and Qyburn
Braavos: The Faceless Men, the House of Black and White, Meryn Trant and Mace Tyrell
Castle Black: Jon & Stannis, Samwell, Jon’s Election, Jon as the Lord Commander of he Night’s Watch, Hardhome, “For the Watch”
We also mentioned the 2016 ASOIAF calendar during our intro which can be purchased here!
Our notes were not as thorough this time around due to it being much more discussion-oriented, but here’s our google doc with our notes
Thanks so much for listening, and let us know what you think! Were our criticisms fair, accurate? Did our changes make sense? What changes might you make?
Final note: We’re coming up to our 10th(!!!) episode, and we all thought it might be fun if in our 10th episode, we answered any questions or addressed any theories that you all might have for us on the blog. So, if you have questions about ASOIAF (or really anything, within somereason) or a theory that you’d like to get our opinion on, leave a comment below to this post or send us an e mail at email@example.com, and we’ll answer or discuss anything you all want to hear analyzed or discussed!
“I served Lord Arryn and Lord Stark as best I could. I was saddened and horrified by their most untimely deaths.” (ACOK, Tyrion II)
Lord Varys was feared throughout the Seven Kingdoms on account of his inexplicable ability to gather any and all information. The whispers, as he called it, were the lifeblood of his work and kept nobleman and commoner alike in fear of what Varys could report to the king and his small council. And the man was effective. High and low treason was discovered and punished. The activities of ships captains, high-born ladies, great lords and mountain clansmen were all monitored by Varys through his vast intelligence network.
But despite Varys vast network of little birds, there were major intelligence failures — two of which will be the focus of this analysis.
1. Did Varys know of Jon Arryn’s poisoning, and if he did, why did he stand aside and allow it to occur?
2. More importantly for the main story, how did Varys not hear whispers of Eddard Stark’s execution?
Both of these questions have perplexed me in my current re-read. The easy answer is that Varys and his intelligence network were fallible, but in light of information from all 5 books, I think the answer is much more muddled than a simple lapse in intelligence.
“Always keep your foes confused. If they are never certain who you are or what you want, they cannot know what you are like to do next. Sometimes the best way to baffle them is to make moves that have no purpose, or even seem to work against you.” (ASOS, Sansa V)
When I was younger, I had delusions of playing poker professionally. After losing money early on, I tried to figure out what I was doing wrong. So, I read books to improve my game. While I was never able to really turn a profit in playing, I did learn about the various styles of play which made the actual pros tick. One of those styles of play is known as loose-aggressive. Loose-Aggressive players (sometimes pejoratively known as maniacs) play a lot of the hands dealt to them no matter the strength of the cards in hand. In this way, they consistently keep other players guessing what the true strength of their hand is.
If Littlefinger were a poker player, he would be a maniac. Like me, his early forays into the game resulted in losses for him — a scar and a broken heart being the most prominent. Unlike me, his later maniac style of play netted huge personal profits. But how did Littlefinger achieve this feat? We’ll pick up the story chronologically from part 1. I’ll talk about the knife and Littlefinger’s early intrigues of the court with Ned as Hand.