Friday, March 2, 2012

Joe Firestone — John Carney Doesn't Believe That Government Spending Can Achieve Public Purpose


Read it at Daily Kos | Money and Public Purpose
John Carney Doesn't Believe That Government Spending Can Achieve Public Purpose
by Joe (Letsgetitdone) Firestone

15 comments:

paulie46 said...

Oh, Good Grief!!!!

Dan Kervick said...

Joe F. is right on top of this. And by the way, notice that the view Carney is defending here is much more extreme than anything the MMR guys are saying. Carney is basically saying that the government is nothing but a gigantic garbage dump, and that whenever our nation's resources are put to use by government rather than by some private sector alternative, it is like throwing resources in the dump. This is far right extremism.

Anonymous said...

Carney's article seems pretty incoherent. Surely investment is independent of saving?

Why is it that there are so many of these right-wing so-called 'libertarian' types in the US financial media?

Tom Hickey said...

Investment is funded by a combo of equity, debt, and retained earnings.

Matt Franko said...

I think we are the only clear thinking people on the planet wrt these issues....

Most of all of the thinking outside our paradigm is looking more irrational to me as time goes by and others outside the paradigm offer commentary.... disturbing.

Resp,

Bob Roddis said...

You guys really need to read “Triumph of Conservatism” by leftist Gabriel Kolko, a book that I’ve owned since 1973. Looks like you can get a used copy pretty cheap.

http://tinyurl.com/6mjsgfo

It’s always been common knowledge to me and other libertarians that the “progressive” reforms were put in place by the very elite from whom the public allegedly needed protection.

Prior to the “progressive” reforms, as Kolko states, "There was more competition, and profits, if anything, declined. Most contemporary economists and many smaller businessmen failed to appreciate this fact, and historians have probably failed to recognize it altogether"
The stage thus set by the failure of the merger movement, Kolko moves on to the myth that Progressive Era reforms were uniformly or even predominantly opposed by their affected industries. The key is to realize that, economic strategies like corporate consolidation having failed, companies turned to political strategies to freeze the status quo or to gain new competitive advantages. As Kolko states, "the essential purpose and goal of any measure of importance in the Progressive Era was not merely endorsed by key representatives of businesses involved; rather such bills were first proposed by them."


This is what results from granting the government plenary economic power in a “democracy”. Voters simply do not and never will have sufficient information to make informed choices and the all-powerful state will be easy pickings for the rich elite. Just like today.

Your naiveté about the nature of government* and your historical ignorance are amazing.

*SWAT teams and prisons

Detroit Dan said...

Off topic, but I can't restrain myself. What do you think of this rewording of S=I+(S-I)?

Savings = Horizontal saving (investment) + vertical savings (fiscal deficit) + foreign savings (trade surplus)

Can (aggregate) investment be negative? I imagine the value of investment varies considerably depending upon the accounting technique to value past investments (book value, market value). Can anyone help me with this?

Letsgetitdone said...

Kolko did some very fine work, but he would not draw the implications you do. And this:

"This is what results from granting the government plenary economic power in a “democracy”. Voters simply do not and never will have sufficient information to make informed choices and the all-powerful state will be easy pickings for the rich elite. Just like today.

Your naiveté about the nature of government* and your historical ignorance are amazing."

But these two paragraphs are not to the point. No one here is advocating for the all powerful state, and no one here is advocating for plutocracy except you. The Government has been corrupted for a long time now by corporate interests. But, nevertheless the only power great enough to constrain and regulate them is the people's power exercised collectively through the government. That's the real TINA. Ans that's why we need to keep trying.

Tom Hickey said...

Bob, Alexander Hamilton delivered the county in to the hand of the banks right out of the gate. Nothing new to see here. It runs through US history, which was designed from the beginning to assume the mantel of empire. Now the empire is in full swing, and voters seem to like it. They call it "American exceptionalism."

The libertarianism of neither left nor right is more than a blip on the screen politically, but that blip is getting bigger as Tea Party and Occupy leaders are finding common ground, as I posted here recently.

I don't disagree about democracy being corruptible with "bread and circuses." Nothing new to see here. Plato pointed it out millennia ago.

However, the notion that therefore anarcho-capitalism is the superior solution is quite a jump. Most people can see the inevitable outcome of that, which will be the same concentration of wealth and power but with no leash at all without the rule of law, which requires intervention of some controlling agent.

The conclusion of political scientists has generally been that while democracy has its faults, it is the best of the worst.

The solution proposed from the left is to raise the general level of collective consciousness through a holistic approach to cultural, education, and institutional design, which has been the basis of progress in civilized live and which has a liberal bias, that is, greater freedom for more of the population.

Given the choice between anarcho-capitalism and anarcho-communitarianism, I'll take my chances with the latter.

Septeus7 said...

It's James McGill Buchanan's radical subjectivism all over again. Did we learn nothing from the disaster that was applying "Public Choice theory"?

Adam Curtis's the Trap around 30 minute mark explains where there this idea that there is no public good comes from a paranoid cold war era logic. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZt2HhFXB3M)

Quote from Bob: "This is what results from granting the government plenary economic power in a “democracy”. Voters simply do not and never will have sufficient information to make informed choices and the all-powerful state will be easy pickings for the rich elite. Just like today."

Yet somehow the you so-called "Conservatives" maintain at the same time market acts a perfect democratic voting machine deciding prices based on the the "voting" of consumers via spending.

Somehow, the market where individual certainly lack perfect information magically in the "market" correct this failure.

So Bob, explain why "markets" are the perfect democratic expression of popular will and the source all public virtues in one case but political democracy is hopelessly imperfect and doomed to collectivist tyranny?

Which is Bob? Democracy: Bad if political and institutional but Democracy: Good because if it is a perfect "free market" consumer democracy?

You can't have both ways. Either Republican rule is possible and there must be limits to the claims of private property and "government" (rule by the mind) must be used to balance the claims private interest and the commonweal. The other option is Imperial "Governance" (rule by authority) where the arbitrary claims of the property owning classes are the only rules and the interest of the common man counts for nothing.

If there are no limits to the private accumulation of property then there can be no objection to monarchist rule are since monarch is but the simple application of a absolute property claims over a territory which the non landing owning peasants must access to survive (see Henry George).

Why can't we think using hemispheres of the Brain rather this left brain idiocy of the Austrian school?

Austrians simply can't understand neither the individual nor the society exist as things ontologically. Your entire epistemology is based on the misplaced concreteness of things and identities which are assumed to exist apriori rather than as they truly exist as relations between wholes within the greater holon of the Universe which is a single object both containing the mind and object of mind's consideration and action something which the physics has yet fully understand and completely rejected in the Newtonian worldview of classical physics. Newtonian was almost certainly autistic savant so the reductionism to mechanics is understandable.

Why do you think that the folks at the Mises Institution attack Einstein and promote lunatics like
Immanuel Velikovsky? Because the the Reimannian geometry than Einstein used completely debunked the praxeological method before Menger even thought of it and the Austrian school in principle requires a Newtonian world.

I'm sure Tom Hickley is better at explaining the long standing philosophical dispute in science from Newton versus Leibniz on the issues of reductionism and particles versus waves, singularities and holism.

If you cannot understand this it's most likely not your fault. You have a left-brain dominance and an obstructed ability to understand connections. Relearning to use your right brain will be very difficult as it was for me. I used to be far right conservative libertarian type but 5 years of studying from 2005 to 2010 eventually led me to the truth and MMT.

I'm still learning through...

paulie46 said...

Detroit Dan

Head over here for a discussion. Might help.

http://www.winterspeak.com/2012/03/confused-about-mmr.html?showComment=1330780547255#c8498910695957243977

Bob Roddis said...

So I assume we do not dispute Kolko’s facts, only his lesson from those facts?

The only point one can draw from Kolko is that big business did not and CANNOT monopolize under laissez faire. In fact, the only way to monopolize is either using government special treatment and/or so called intellectual property which is a form of special treatment. All that a business can do under laissez faire is ask “pretty please” for people to voluntarily buy their products. If they have no voluntary customers, they go out of business. If the government is “constrained” (to coin a term) from changing the rules so as to make an exception in bailing them out or to impairing their competition, they cannot cause any serious problems. Pollution and slavery violate the rules and would be enjoined and punished immediately.

The market does not lead to monopoly and it does not lead to mass or structural unemployment. The “plutocracy” can only come into being by employing the means of the state (SWAT teams, fines and prisons) to force its will. Otherwise, it can only ask “pretty please”. It’s definitional, like your sector balances.

Tom Hickey said...

Government is a fact of life in the modern world. Any country that would go without government and national defense would last about a minute. Moreover, pure laissez-faire is not a "free market" but a market that would soon be controlled by the strongest who would seize control by force, i.e., the Mafia.

It's a nice theoretical dream but impractical and a recipe for control by the most powerful alliance, which is only established on rivers of blood, as history goes to show.

This is asking for an abandonment of the rule of law, which is the sine qua non of civilization.

reslez said...

The only point one can draw from Kolko is that big business did not and CANNOT monopolize under laissez faire.

Wait, what? Don't be absurd. Big business always inclines to monopoly/oligopoly, to the detriment of consumers and citizens. Giant piles of money generate their own gravity wells, distorting the space around them and bending governments and law to their will. Wall Street views this as a feature, not a bug.

Bob Roddis said...

We have a definitional problem here.

Big business always inclines to monopoly/oligopoly, to the detriment of consumers and citizens. Giant piles of money generate their own gravity wells, distorting the space around them and bending governments and law to their will. Wall Street views this as a feature, not a bug.

If big business takes over the government and changes the rules in its favor, then laissez faire no longer obtains and one cannot blame the ensuing problems upon laissez faire.

Suppose there is a law that prohibits the hunting of pet dogs. Evil people then either change the law or the cops ignore the law and a massive hunting of pet dogs occurs without penalty. One cannot then blame the ensuing hunt on the law that prohibited the hunting of pet dogs in the first place.