Over its last one hundred years, the State steadily devalued the currency by 98%.
The high cost of government—particularly, growing entitlements and perpetual warfare, coupled with a diminished number of taxpayers, led the government to massive debt, to the point that it could not be repaid.
Those citizens that were productive began to exit the country, finding new homes in countries that were not quite so sophisticated but offered better prospects for the future.
The decline in the value of the currency resulted in ever-increasing prices of goods, so much so that the purchase of them became a hardship to the people. By governmental edict, wage and price controls were established, forcing rises in wages whilst capping the amount that vendors could charge for goods.
The result was that vendors offered fewer and fewer goods for sale, as the profit had been eliminated.