Tuesday, May 26, 2015

One thing I can tell you...really wonderful people come to this blog. I am convinced of that.

I met a really nice guy named Josh today, who was visiting NYC from Australia and he asked to meet up with me for a coffee.

Josh is a follower of this blog and he is a wonderfully intelligent and thoughtful person. It's little things like that that make this thing worthwhile and sometimes, you know, I've expressed my frustration with all of these efforts, but it's those emails from you--the readers--or face to face encounters that are extremely gratifying.

Let me say, too, that there is a common thread among everyone I hear from, whether face to face or, via email or message and this goes for the contributors here as well; guys like Tom and Matt, Justin, Roger, et al...their intelligence, thoughtfulness, humor, earnestness, passion, honesty and courage, all shine through. They're great people as are the folks who come here to learn and contribute in ways big and small.

Thank you.

-Mike Norman


Greg said...

Thank you Mike!

This site is first on my list to check everyday. The variety of topics that Tom covers in his reading/posting is remarkable. I love Matts and Rogers takes on the issues and Justin is a great addition.

But I must say that I really enjoy your rants, because you are frustrated in much the same way I am. I came to MMT right after the GFC of 2007/8. It found me really. I was trying to learn any and all I could about finance econ at the time because the sand was really shifting and I knew the econ "common knowledge" was pure BS. I didn't know exactly how to argue against it but I knew supply side was propaganda/BS.

I remember many discussions on Billy Blog where we talked about "the last mile", that the truth of MMT would eventually be seen but that the last mile was the hardest. Well it seems like the last light year sometimes and I really share your frustration with the way our leaders and their advisers continue to follow the same erroneus ways of thinking. I sometimes lose hope to be honest..... but there is always something every few days that makes me think that in small but significant ways we are turning the tide.

Keep up the good work!!

mike norman said...

"But I must say that I really enjoy your rants"


At least I found out I am good for something.

Thank you, Greg. No, seriously...thanks for being a regular reader. I really do appreciate it.

John said...

I only wish I came across this blog years ago! A message to MMTers everywhere, stop being such academic pussies and be like the streetfighting bastards over here at MNE.

There's probably a lot of mad, bad and dangerous to know economic ideas still rattling around in my head, but with Mike, Tom, Matt and the rest of the crew, badass economic exorcists to the core, I'm on a short road to a demon free recovery.

Saints Michael, Thomas, Matthew, Justin and Roger. Didn't realise there was a Saint Roger (I just Googled it) but it's fitting to complete the set!

Bless you all,

Pope John

Magpie said...

You're a cool kind of bloke, Mike.

Keep it up!

NeilW said...

There is a problem amongst the Left in that they are so scared to death of upsetting somebody that they end up saying nothing of value at all.

There are two arts to diplomacy. The first is to try and avoid making an enemy. The second is to make your point.

The left overall seems to have got hung up on the former and forgot the latter. Yet the latter is where progress happens.

You can't call yourself progressive unless you cause progress.

John said...


Todays so-called lefties are the most spineless, gutless, brainless, naive imbeciles in political history. Personally, I don't think they're on the left (they're in a a brain dead coma), but that's another matter. It's easy to walk all over them, just tell them that if they don't do lots of nasty rightwing things then the Right will do lots of nasty rightwing things, and that's much worse apparently.

The Right is well organised, vicious, ideological and is willing to tell the most incredible lies. The so-called Left is more interested in being polite, good mannered and adhering to the political equivalent of the Marquess of Queensberry rules.

There is some hope though. When the Left refuses to be intimidated by the maniacs, is organised, very serious and campaigns on a strongly leftwing platform, like Podemos, Die Linke and Syriza have, the public responds. The Left should stop trying to be nice to nasty people. It should do a Roosevelt and say "I welcome their hatred".

As it is, British and American rightwing fantasists have a terrible dilemma. Is the so-called centre-left or the co-called centre-right more reactionary?

Matt Franko said...

" is organised, very serious and campaigns on a strongly leftwing platform, like Podemos, Die Linke and Syriza have, the public responds."

Yes... here in the US, imo the "socio-economic cohort" of voters is the true swing vote...

If you want to win, you have to go after that cohort... In 2012, Romney the moron got caught on tape with his 47% comments and was DOOMED right there... Meanwhile his sidekick Ryan did the soup kitchen fiasco to no avail people dont want more soup kitchens (other than the Pope and he cant vote here...)

Bush 2 was able to pull it off by coining his "compassionate conservative" motto... it was juuuuusssssttt enough to swing it to his side by a VERY narrow margin...

Right now imo both parties are ignoring this cohort that is manifestly the swing vote, the parties are run by libertarian morons...


John said...

Matt, the US and UK, and most other other advanced industrial countries, are very similar in that respect. The working poor are to all intents and purposes completely unrepresented and never will be. They haven't heard a populist leftwing alternative in decades, possibly never in their lives. Yet the so-called Left ignores, even despises, them, leaving them prey to the far right, which certainly knows how to feed off people's grievances.

Add to the mix the huge number of unemployed, under employed, the unemployed who pretend to be sick and are living on disability and sickness benefits, the proportion of the population amenable to a populist leftwing party is simply huge. Yet what does the so-called Left babble on about? The aspirational middle class and the entrepreneur! Amazing, truly fu**ing amazing.

I know it's immeasurably harder for the Left to organise in the US (the institutionalised nature of the two party system, campaign finance, a pitiful trade union movement, etc), but we in the UK have no such excuse. We should be ashamed of ourselves given that we have no such institutional barriers. In fact it's doubly worse and doubly shameful since the so-called Left believes a Labour win is some sort of success.

Personally, I far prefer to have a Tory government over a Labour government. There'll probably be less innocent blood spilt. There's nothing worse in politics than the self-satisfied, self-righteous smirk of rightwing Labour people. David Cameron is a far better prime minister than Tony Blair, Britain's Caligula, because he is so much less rightwing and bloodthirsty.

It's so depressing. It's enough to make you want to join the Libertarian Party.

NeilW said...

"We should be ashamed of ourselves given that we have no such institutional barriers"

The institutional barrier is hard cash.

Lord Sainsbury doesn't bankroll the Labour Party so that they can put up the price of his slave army. He expects the Party to feather his nest while talking nice about the upper middle classes that form the operational part of the Party and occasionally mentioning Alms to the Poor by improving charity tax deductions for said upper middle classes.

John said...

Leaving aside the fact that the Labour Party is less leftwing that the Tory Party, money really isn't the issue here.

Trade union money to the Labour Party is more than sufficient to make it an effective political force. In UK politics, money in campaign finance is subject to diminishing returns, as the SNP showed. A progressive political agenda backed with enough union money can beat the Tories corporate money.

It isn't money that's holding back the Labour Party. Simply put, the Labour Party is becoming an irrelevance, and with constituency boundary changes and an SNP Scotland it doesn't really have a future as a schizophrenic Tory-lite/uber-Tory Party.

The Tories will always have more money: rich rightwing donators have more money than workers donating to an ostensibly workers' party. Once the so-called Left tries to out money the Tories, they'll be captured by the same forces, as New Labour was, not that the neoconservative Caligula-Blair needed capturing.

Matt Franko said...

"It's enough to make you want to join the Libertarian Party."

Nnnnooooooooooooooo!!!!!!! Dont do it John!!!! Dont do it!!!!


John said...

Matt, the pre-frontal lobotomy requirement put me off, along with the zany racist arguments about voluntary slavery and the kooky works of Ayn Rand, a strong candidate for the worst writer in the history of multicellular organic life.

But to their eternal credit the Libertarians have opposed just about every war.