Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Bill Mitchell — Marx’s dream does not justify ignoring day-to-day human suffering

One of the recurring criticisms I face when presenting at events comes from those who say they are ‘socialists’ or ‘Marxists’. They accuse me in various ways of being an apologist for capitalism, for offering palliative solutions to workers, which will delay the break down of the system and the revolution to socialism and communism. These critics proudly announce they follow Marx’s solutions and that they reject Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) because it is just a stooge for capitalism. The problem is that Marx had no real vision of how we would transit to Communism. A recent book referred to Marx’s philosophical position on this as a ‘dream’ (more later). And MMT is not specific to any mode of production, by which I mean, who owns the material means of production. It is applicable to any monetary system, and I cannot imagine any modern, technologically-based society functioning outside of that reality – socialist, capitalist or otherwise. But, moreover, the critics seem to be displaying a lack of basic humanity where they exercise reasoning that Noam Chomsky regularly refers to as belonging in a philosophy seminar. Even progressives (and socialists) have to be aware of humanity – as they plot and scheme for the revolution....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Marx’s dream does not justify ignoring day-to-day human suffering
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Bloomberg - Why China’s Lead on EVs Has Been a Long Time Coming

 A lot of Anti-China propaganda in this video, but it's interesting. China's approach, which is to have a lot of government involvement, has paid off well. 


When it comes to green manufacturing, China is now a clean-energy powerhouse. Its market dominance from solar panels to electric vehicles took long-term planning and a level of financial investment only state-controlled banking systems can deliver. By 2030, China will have an outsized influence on this strategic industry, and it’s poised to seize a fair share of the jobs and wealth creation that come with it.




Bloomberg - Why China’s Lead on EVs Has Been a Long Time Coming

"Digital yuan's anonymity is misunderstood, says China's digital currency leader

 I quite like the idea of a digital currency because it will make it much harder for organised crime to operate, but I would still like anonymity for daily transactions. China said it intends to keep cash, but they are also saying here that for small transactions people will have more animosity with the new digital Yuan than they do with regular digital payments. The new digital currencies do not need extensive mining either so they don't more energy that regular digital transactions. 


Mu Changchun, the Director General of China’s central bank Digital Currency Research Institute, clarified how the managed anonymity of China’s digital yuan works 


How it works


Digital yuan wallets have multiple tiers, and each tier is authorized to transact larger total values. The aim is to support anonymous small value payments but traceable larger amounts. 


Apart from the small value fourth tier, users have to provide conventional proof of identity to open a wallet. The small value tier requires only a phone number as an identity. In contrast, other digital payments, such as via payment providers like Alipay or WeChat Pay, require conventional identification at onboarding.


"Digital yuan's anonymity is misunderstood, says China's digital currency leader


New York Times tweet


The Biden administration warned that digital currencies posed a threat to America’s sanctions program and said in a new report that the U.S. needed to modernize how sanctions were deployed so that they remained an effective national security tool.

 

 https://t.co/yuTh0o4Bat

Monday, October 18, 2021

Links — 18 Oct 2021

Moon of Alabama (???)
The New Chinese Wonder Weapon Which Likely Isn't One

RT
Convenient and inexpensive way to space-travel: China responds to reports of hypersonic missile launch that apparently shocked US

ECNS
China to launch mass entrepreneurship, innovation week
Xinhua




We Need to Think Harder About Inflation — Stephanie Kelton

In my view, the first step in "thinking about inflation" is not thinking about it at all, but rather jettisoning the concept entirely since it is not reducible to simple inputs, as commonly supposed, but rather involves a constellation of factors whose importance varies with conditions affecting both supply and demand on one hand, and institutional factors as well. There is too much investment in what amounts to nonsense like "monetary policy" to redefine the terms so as to fit a realistic model — if that could even be done in a social science whose subject matter is a complex adaptive system.* 
Anyway, I’m glad to see that the White House isn’t just thinking harder about inflation but actually doing things to help ease supply-chain bottlenecks. It’s definitely time to start thinking outside the inflation (black) box.1
The Lens
We Need to Think Harder About Inflation
Stephanie Kelton | Professor of Public Policy and Economics at Stony Brook University, formerly Democrats' chief economist on the staff of the U.S. Senate Budget Committee, and an economic adviser to the 2016 presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders

* This also goes for many other conventional economic concepts that are unhelpful and misleading, as heterodox economists have been pointing out a long time.

How to achieve full decolonization [with MMT] — Jason Hickel

Southern governments are captive to the demands of international capital, which prevents them from meeting their people’s real needs. MMT offers a way out, says Jason Hickel.
New Internationalist
How to achieve full decolonization
Jason Hickel

The 2021 Nobel Prize, And Michał Kalecki On The Positive Effects Of Rise In Wages On Employment — Ramanan

Setting the record straight.

The Case for Concerted Action
The 2021 Nobel Prize, And Michał Kalecki On The Positive Effects Of Rise In Wages On Employment
V. Ramanan

Productivity in late capitalism — Chris Dillow

 Must-read. (It's short.)

Chris Dillow sheds some light on one of the chief economic challenges the developed world faces — productivity stagnation — regarding which many factors are operative, including non-economic ones that lead to "internal contradictions" endemic in the capitalistic system as presently configured.

Stumbling and Mumbling
Productivity in late capitalism
Chris Dillow | Investors Chronicle

See also

Fun if you know some Marx.

MR Online
Calvin Wu


Mint After Reading: Philip Diehl Talks with Rohan Grey — Rohan Grey and William Saas

Rohan Grey and Nathan Tankus are emerging as next-generation MMT stars.

Podcast and transcript.

MR Online — Money On The Left
Mint After Reading: Philip Diehl Talks with Rohan Grey
Rohan Grey and William Saas

Bill Mitchell — Latest US quits behaviour signals possible shift in power to workers

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics published the latest JOLTs data last week (October 12, 2021) – Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary – August 2021 – which has raised a possible shift in bargaining power in the US labour market towards workers. The most obvious sign of that is the rising quit rates, which are most prevalent in the low-wage sectors. While there is still some slack in the US labour market, the evidence suggests that workers are taking advantage of the improved job opportunities to pursue better wages and conditions. We will have to wait and see whether there are any significant wage outcomes arising from this behaviour or whether workers are just jumping from very bad to bad jobs. Time will tell..…
Hard to tell at this point whether there will be a "return to normal" as back to the status quo ante, a new normal, or continuing disruption from fluid conditions. Uncertainty is so elevated now that forecasting is mostly guessing about assumptions and expectations. There seems to be no historical trend to base modeling on. 

So, questions about employment, inflation, etc. are about new territory, especially given that climate change seems to present longterm challenges that affect energy, which is the basis of production, transportation, communication, etc. In other words the commanding heights of the economy. As a result, the world system is under stress socially, politically, and economically, right down to the availability of food and water.

But so far the fundamental structure of neoliberalism remains in place, which means that workers are a tool and not a target economically, although they becomes actual targets for repression if they get too far out of line, and we are already seeing strikes increasing.

I am not very sanguine about prospects, since actually addressing the issues involves not only jettisoning "neoliberalism" but also re-tooling "capitalism" itself as an economic system based on private accumulation where distribution is allocated by market forces and externality can be socialized, especially in an era of finance and monopoly capitalism were rent-seeking predominates.

Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Latest US quits behaviour signals possible shift in power to workers
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Greg Murray - Why do we wake around 3am and dwell on our fears and shortcomings?

 This has happened to me, I've demolished someone on twitter, which easy to do with science deniers, only to wake up at 3am and feel that I was far too horrible and mean, but when I look at my tweets after I have gotten up, I find that I was actually quite reasonable and polite. But I've had it happen in other situations too. 


When I wake at 3am or so, I’m prone to picking on myself. And I know I’m not the only one who does this. A friend of mine calls 3am thoughts “barbed-wire thinking”, because you can get caught in it.

The thoughts are often distressing and punitive. Strikingly, these concerns vaporise in the daylight, proving that the 3am thinking was completely irrational and unproductive.

"Why do we wake around 3am and dwell on our fears and shortcomings?"


 Greg Murray - Why do we wake around 3am and dwell on our fears and shortcomings?


Sunday, October 17, 2021

Refreshingly Honest Billionaire Says Media Purchase Will Be Used For Propaganda — Caitlin Johnstone

 Politico purchase by German firm Alex Springer.

CaitlinJohnstone.com
Refreshingly Honest Billionaire Says Media Purchase Will Be Used For Propaganda
Caitlin Johnstone

Why The World Still Isn’t Ready For An EV Revolution — Felicity Bradstock

A lack of charging points and the prevalence of slow charging options have left some reluctant to make the shift. In fact, Allegra Stratton, spokesperson for the COP26 climate summit, made headlines when she stated, “I don’t fancy it just yet,” in reference to swapping her aging diesel Volkswagen Golf for an EV alternative. She justified the statement by saying that she has elderly relatives that live “200, 250 miles away”, and the need to stop and charge would take too much time, particularly when traveling with her children. If even the voice of the world’s climate change summit is unwilling to shift, this says a lot about consumer needs.…

Another factor is cost. EVs are still comparatively much more expensive than their petrol equivalents. Despite decreasing production and battery costs, electric cars are still much more expensive on average than traditional cars. There is a lack of low-budget EVs on the market, whereas there are both low-cost versions and second-hand options of traditional cars. Yet, analysis by BloombergNEF suggests this could all shift in the near future, with the “upfront cost parity” of EV and internal combustion vehicles in the U.S. expected to arrive in 2024.
An idea whose time has not yet come.

Oilprice
Why The World Still Isn’t Ready For An EV Revolution
Felicity Bradstock

IEA Director — Energy Prices Will Continue To Rise Without Greater Investment In Clean Energy Production

  • Global energy prices are likely to keep rising without a major boost in clean energy investment, warns the IEA.
  • The energy crisis has led to a sharp rebound in coal and oil usage, putting the world on course for the second-largest annual increase in carbon emissions in history this year.
  • The IEA believes current climate pledges are too modest.
Oilprice
IEA Director: Energy Prices Will Continue To Rise Without Greater Investment In Clean Energy Production
City A. M.

The Coin's Deposit Problem — NeilW

Neil explains how banking works.

New Wayland
The Coin's Deposit Problem
NeilW

Micheal Hudson - The Financial Empire

 I can listen to Michael Hudson for hours, and here he presents some complex issues in a very clear, interesting, and entertaining way that holds your attention. 


Michael Hudson says that America's economy is more centrally planned than China's, but unlike China, the central planning is terrible. Their plan is to deindustrialise and then financialise the economy. Their aim is rent extraction, that is, to obtain a free lunch. 

The American elite have corrupted the Washington, but in China the government is still works for the benefit of everyone and the country as a whole. 


Part 1




https://youtu.be/4THv2qQjLhc


Part 2




https://youtu.be/QAmZXtJfkQU



Asia Times — US wins big as China wipes out bitcoin industry

Crypto miners lured by cheap energy and a democratic court system with the power to protect property rights
Winning what, exactly? Anyone know the contribution to GDP from the bitcoin "industry"?

Asia Times
US wins big as China wipes out bitcoin industry

Sputnik — Stop Poking the Dragon! China's Hypersonic Missiles Can Reach US & UK in Blink of Eye, Netizens Say

Remember when the US outspent the USSR and this was puportedly the cause of the collapse of the USSR? As they, what goes around comes around, i.e., karma is a bitch.
Lockheed Martin's hypersonic AGM-183A ARRW ("Arrow") underwent an initial flight test in June 2019. On 27 May 2021, the defence contractor "successfully conducted a significant live fire hypersonic strike system test" of a Common Hypersonic Glide Body (CHGB). Several months later, on 4 October 2021, Lockheed Martin opened a hypersonic weapons factory in Courtland, Alabama.

For its part, the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) carried out a free flight test of the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) on 27 September 2021.

However, the crux of the matter is that the price tag of American hypersonic arms bites. The US Department of Defence (DoD) says that hypersonic missiles are "too expensive" and urges US defence contractors to cut the ultimate cost of the weapon.

"We need to figure out how to drive towards more affordable hypersonics", Under Secretary of Defence for Research and Engineering Heidi Shyu told reporters earlier this week.

Next thing you know the DOD and Pentagon will screaming, "Mint the coin, already!"

Sputnik International
Stop Poking the Dragon! China's Hypersonic Missiles Can Reach US & UK in Blink of Eye, Netizens Say

See also at SI
China Tested New Space Capability With Hypersonic Missile in August - Report

Also

The Chinese say they don't want an arms race but, hey, when a country that declares it self your adversary initiates a "space force," what is one to do?

Zero Hedge
"Astounding Progress" - China Tested Hypersonic Weapon That Flew Around The World
Tyler Durden

COVID vaccines cut the risk of transmitting Delta — but not for long

 People who receive two COVID-19 jabs and later contract the Delta variant are less likely to infect their close contacts than are unvaccinated people with Delta.


Vaccine mandates are unlikely to slow the spread of Delta by all that much, but researchers are looking into whether a third booster shot may be more effective at doing so.

The study shows that people who become infected with the Delta variant are less likely to pass the virus to their close contacts if they have already had a COVID-19 vaccine than if they haven’t1. But that protective effect is relatively small, and dwindles alarmingly at three months after the receipt of the second shot.

Nature 



COVID cases and fatalities surge in Russia

 What happens when not enough people get vaccinated. The Russians are very scared of vaccines, and will even buy fake vaccination certificates. 



CBS News reporter Mary Ilyushina takes a look at spiking coronavirus infection rates in Russia. Hospitals are overwhelmed with patients and the death toll is rising. And with low vaccination rates and an increasingly apathetic public, it's unclear when the country's latest COVID-19 wave will end.




https://youtu.be/X4aF0RSWokU


DW: Russia's COVID-19 hospital beds at 2/3 capacity as they see record death toll 


COVID-19 case numbers in Russia are surging in a 4th infection wave. 973 people died on Tuesday - that's Russia's highest official daily death toll since the start of the pandemic.   


The number of deaths in the country has been high since the summer. But the curve has risen sharply in the last few weeks, with the delta variant and vaccine hesitancy driving the spread. DW's Moscow correspondent Juri Rescheto has more on how serious the situation in Russia now is with COVID-19.




https://youtu.be/ijgNJpUes4Y


Friday, October 15, 2021

Links — 15 Oct 2021

The Independent
The west wants to engage Russia and China on the climate crisis, while also demonising them – it won’t work
Patrick Cockburn

Sputnik International
New US Treasury Guidelines Warn Crypto Industry of Perils of Sanctions Violations

Strategic Culture Foundation
Colour Revolutions Fade Away
Patrick Armstrong, retired analyst and diplomat (2008) serving in the Canadian Department of National Defence specializing in the USSR/Russia from 1984 and a Counsellor in the Canadian Embassy in Moscow in 1993-1996.

SouthFront
Combined China-Russia Military Might Is Not Enough To Match U.S.: RAND Corp

Asia Times
Milestones show path of Xi’s transformation drive
Jeff Pao

Moon of Alabama
EU Faces Migrant Backlash After Sanctioning Belarus

Reuters

New Guardian Op Ed: The case for minting a $1tn coin to deal with America’s debt ceiling — Nathan Tankus

Nathan Tankus has an op ed up.

Notes on the Crisis
New Guardian Op Ed: The case for minting a $1tn coin to deal with America’s debt ceiling
Nathan Tankus

Central Asia’s Neoliberal Tragedy — Michael Hudson

Resilience cannot be restored without public spending, but the rentier business plan is to minimize taxes by shrinking the government, especially by privatizing its public utilities and other functions to create opportunities for charging monopoly rents, and to oppose taxation of economic rent. Today’s mainstream economic philosophy and academic curriculum throughout the West backs this neoliberal program by denying that there is any such thing as unearned rentier income or wealth.

Yet only a rent tax can recapture what insiders have appropriated. At issue above all is whether credit, the banking and tax system will be managed as a public utility or for private gain. A national treasury or central bank must be empowered to create money so as not to rely on foreign banks. The guideline must be that no economy should borrow in a foreign currency that it does not earn, e.g., by exporting to earn the foreign currency needed to pay debts. There is no need to rely on foreign banks to lend dollars to be converted into domestic currency. In such cases the central bank has to create the domestic currency anyway. Foreign credit is needed only to pay for trade and payments deficits, not for domestic investment or consumption.

These tax and financial reforms failed as classical economics was rejected after World War I. The world today needs to recover its basic approach in order to free itself from the pro-rentier detour that it has taken, not only in the post-Soviet republics most conspicuously but now also plaguing Europe and the U.S. post-industrial economy itself.

To avoid the foreign dependency inherent in the neoliberalism sponsored by U.S. diplomacy, the World Bank and IMF requires an alternative body of economic theory, above all the distinction between earned and unearned income and the concept of economic rent as the excess of market pricing over intrinsic cost value. That was the thrust of classical political economy in the 19th century – to free markets from the rentier class. Value and price theory were the analytic tools to isolate economic rent as unearned income. These concepts provide the basis for managing a mixed public/private economy, public investment and credit creation, and for protecting domestic labour, industry and agriculture. In elaborating a theory to guide policy, the disastrous neoliberal promotion of rentier interests throughout the post-Soviet states provides an object [lesson]...

This neoliberal policy agenda, led by the US, UK, and European elites, is to impose neoliberalism, joined at the hip with neo-imperialism and neocolonialism, using all means available worldwide. This would lock-in a neoliberal world system permanently in their view and make resistance futile. This would be done under the guise of freedom and spreading democracy as a new crusade. 

This is the basis of Wilsonian liberal internationalism and interventionism aka foreign policy idealism as opposed to Jacksonianism (America first) and foreign policy realism (national interest).

"The resistance" opposes this as a form of neo-fascist totalitarianism that is euphemistically called "unilateralism." 

This is the dominant theme in the historical dialectic at this time. The result in increasing hostility and conflict, which is existentially threatening in a nuclear age.

Sub-dominant but important themes include the traditional/liberal conflict that has been ongoing since the 18th century, post WWII decolonization , and most recently climate change.

While this is an economic issue, as Michael Hudson presents it here, it is much wider and deeper than that as it affects the world system. It accounts for why the US and NATO are so interested in gaining a foothold in Central Asia and risking war with nuclear Russia and China, which are otherwise irrational.

Naked Capitalism
Central Asia’s Neoliberal Tragedy
Michael Hudson | President of The Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends (ISLET), a Wall Street Financial Analyst, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, and Guest Professor at Peking University

When the West was itchin’ to go to China — Pepe Escobar

Backgrounder. Why BRI  and the New Silk Road are going to happen and stretch to Europe. This is the US's worst nightmare and it will do everything possible to prevent it.

Asia Times
When the West was itchin’ to go to China
Pepe Escobar

The Kentucky Owl — Stephanie Kelton

Based on my own interactions with lawmakers on the Hill, I would estimate that roughly one-third of Congress is now MMT conversant. By that I mean that they could articulate—in very general terms—that the federal government is the issuer of the currency, that its budget is not constrained like that of a household or private business, and that inflation (not solvency) is the relevant constraint on spending.

Congressman Yarmuth is more than generically conversant with MMT. He put in the time and effort required to really understand the framework....
Encouraging. And Congressman Yarmuth is also a former Republican who switched parties.

The Lens
The Kentucky Owl
Stephanie Kelton | Professor of Public Policy and Economics at Stony Brook University, formerly Democrats' chief economist on the staff of the U.S. Senate Budget Committee, and an economic adviser to the 2016 presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Links — 14 Oct 2021

Axios [mansplaining syndrome?]
Sotomayor: SCOTUS oral arguments changed in part because female justices were interrupted
Erin Doherty

Vineyard of the Saker [stupidity, or overweening hubris that goes before a fall? See "Nemesis"]
Russians are in total awe at the suicidal stupidity of the West
The Saker

Defend Democracy
Crazy: US sends the organizer of the Kiev coup [Victoria Nuland] to speak with Russians!

Sputnik International
US Asks Russia to Remove Missiles ‘Violating’ Treaty Which Washington Unilaterally Scrapped

Putin: Traditional Values ​Remain Russia's Key Moral Pillar Despite Criticism

Russia Observer
RUSSIAN FEDERATION SITREP 14 OCTOBER 2021
Patrick Armstrong, retired analyst and diplomat (2008) serving in the Canadian Department of National Defence specializing in the USSR/Russia from 1984 and a Counsellor in the Canadian Embassy in Moscow in 1993-1996.

Oilprice
Russia: Oil And Gas Aren't Going Anywhere In The Coming Decades
Charles Kennedy

U.S. Households To Spend 50% More On Energy Bills This Winter
Tsvetana Paraskova

Moon of Alabama
Thoughts On Three Issues - Putin On Europe's Gas Crisis, Iran Talks, Lebanon Shooting

Common Dreams [corruption watch]
Manchin Has Received $1.5 Million From Corporate Interests Attacking Biden Agenda: Report
Jake Johnson

AlterNet [buying justice]
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse: This Supreme Court was built by dark money
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse

ECNS
China to open up wider: Xi
Xinhua (Chinese state media)

TASS
US making big mistake when using dollar as sanction instrument - Putin

Zero Hedge
Putin Praises Crypto As Possible 'Weaponized' Dollar Replacement
Tyler Durden

Real Lumber Prices — Menzie Chinn

The lumber real PPI is essentially back at the levels at the 2018M06 peak.
The worst over?

Econobrowser
Real Lumber Prices
Menzie Chinn | Professor of Public Affairs and Economics, Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs, University of Wisconsin–Madison, co-editor of the Journal of International Money and Finance, and a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research International Finance and Macroeconomics

Zero Hedge — Pandemic Wiped Out Entire Savings Of 20% Of US Households

Well, as we previously pointed out, the bottom 50% own just 2% of all net worth, or a paltry $2.8 trillion. What is even more sad is that the wealth of the bottom 50% is virtually unchanged since 2006, while the net worth of the Top 1% has risen by 132% from $17.9 trillion to $41.5 trillion...
True to form, ZH blames it on the Fed.

Zero Hedge
Pandemic Wiped Out Entire Savings Of 20% Of US Households

Tyler Durden

President Putin on Taiwan: 'China does not need to use force'

Putin says China always delivers on its promises, even if its intention of reducing its carbon footprint is an enormous endeavour. 


Speaking to CNBC's Hadley Gamble at the Russian Energy Week conference in Moscow Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin pointed to Xi's comments suggesting the possibility of a peaceful unification, and China's "philosophy of statehood," to suggest that there is no threat of military confrontation.





President Putin on Taiwan: 'China does not need to use force'

The Real Reason The Economy Might Collapse — Robert Reich

 Inequality resulting in lack of effective demand without supplementing income with debt, which leads to systemic instability. Pretty much like MMT says, following Minsky.

Eurasia Review
The Real Reason The Economy Might Collapse – OpEd
Robert Reich | Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy at UC Berkeley, Secretary of Labor in the Clinton Adminstration, and formerly a professor at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Governmen and professor of social and economic policy at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management of Brandeis University

Mike on QE

 

Mikes comments on QE from 10 years ago when they were doing 600b per month … In light of possible “QT” starting next month:



The Fed is buying "scale down" and in effect, causing the selloff. They're doing this because they're fixated on quantity ($600 bln) as opposed to price (interest rate). I remember when I was a floor trader. I had clients in the oil business--big firms--who would sometimes want to protect a certain price. They'd give me an order that would be, "Buy 100 (crude), 'worst.'" That meant buy it up...aggressively. When Japan used to actively intervene in FX markets, they wouldn't scale down their dollar buying (or sell yen scale up), they'd buy dollars aggressively to put the USD/JPY exchange rate to a certain level. The Fed is not doing this. By signaling to the market that they will buy scale down, they are actually creating this selloff as nervous longs look to sell before the largest buyer lowers its bid again and as speculative shorts compete for a better price.




Why Jeff Bezos’ Space Dream is Humanity's Nightmare | George Monbiot

No one should be allowed to get bigger than the government, including Elon Musk, who I've gone off a bit recently. 

Of course governments can be bad, and many are, but the good of society should come before the desires of individuals. 

I was brought up with the British welfare state, where seeing its benefits first hand, it has made me a Big Government kind of guy. It's probably why I like MMT too. 

And trains! The Tories ripped up loads of train lines in Britain during the 1960's, which was known as Beching's cuts. What a shame!




A tweet about Chinese collectivism 

I once borrowed $5K from my father; I felt incredible shame.

I observe how Chinese families routinely lend money among themselves, often necessary to buy housing.

I read how certain Chinese companies, in debt, request their employees do the same.

Stockholders are not family.



Why Jeff Bezos’ Space Dream is Humanity's Nightmare | George Monbiot

Australian Vaccine Mandates

 Just got this.


Some people say that this is authoritarian, as if authoritarian is always automatically wrong. But the local councils where I live won't let you drive faster than 20mph in the backstreets where I live as the roads are very narrow and too many children were getting injured or killed. 


And the government is authitarian on seat belts and crash Helmets for bike riders. 


The Australian government knows that people will die in their homes in agony unless something is done to halt the spread of Covid. The hospitals won't be able to cope with the Covid outbreak otherwise. The Australian government messed up the vaccination roll out, I have read. 


#Australia : Northern Territory leader Michael Gunner annouces that If you are not vaccinated by start of Nov you lose your job in NT and you will be fined $5,000 if you don't comply

“not wanting a vaccine is not a sufficient reason” 




‘6 Ways Vaccination Requirements Are Different From The Holocaust’: A Handy Guide For Anti-Vaxxers


Some anti-vaxxers have been comparing the vaccination requirements in Australia, Canada and elsewhere to the Holocaust, claiming they are being persecuted, just as Jewish people were during WWII. One woman even dressed up her children wearing yellow Star of David patches.   


We took their advice and ‘did our own research’ and found some surprising differences between the two events. We’ve summarised our findings in this handy guide for anti-vaxxers.

The Shovel


6 Ways Vaccination Requirements Are Different From The Holocaust’: A Handy Guide For Anti-Vaxxers


Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Bill Mitchell — Australian labour market continues to contract

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released the latest labour force data today (October 14, 2021) – Labour Force, Australia – for September 2021. The background is that the entire East Coast is in or has been in lockdown over the last few months and for the two largest labour markets (NSW and Victoria) that lockdown has been very tight. Both states are in the process of easing restrictions as vaccination rates rise. The September 2021 data reveals that the longer NSW lockdown is now impacting heavily on employment growth which is now 4.7 points below the March 2020 level. Similarly, Victoria’s employment level has fallen and is 2.1 points below the pre-pandemic level. Overall for the nation, employment fell for the second consecutive month as did the participation, the latter cushioning the rise in official unemployment. But if we take into account the participation decline, the actual unemployment rate would be 5.7 per cent rather than the official rate of 4.6 per cent. Quite a difference. The turbulence caused by the pandemic has really masked the steady decline before that and my estimates are that the true unemployment rate, taking into account the rise in hidden unemployment since August 2019, is close to 7 per cent. Again, quite a difference. The more stable ratio – the Employment-to-Population ratio plunged again in September – two months of massive declines. Last month, I predicted the situation will would worse in September – and it did. So while the unemployment rate might be relatively low by recent historical standards, the situation is dire. The lack of any significant stimulus from the federal government is telling. There is now definite evidence that further and rather massive fiscal support is required....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Australian labour market continues to contract
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Links — 13 OCT 2021

TK [Another nothingburger. Why is Russiagate still a thing? The media keeps it alive as a club.]
Konstantin Kilimnik, Russiagate's Last Fall Guy, Speaks Out
Matt Taibbi

Zero Hedge
Taiwan Is Part Of China, Russia Declares, As Two Powers Coordinate To Resist US Pressure
Tyler Durden

Independent Media Institute
What Kind of a Threat Is Russia?
Brittani Banks

Open Democracy [On the other hand, this is not a simple issue. It needs careful analysis.]
Regulating Big Tech is not enough. We need platform socialism.
James Muldoon

East Asia Forum
Moving beyond the US–China Cold War cliche
Suisheng Zhao

The Unz Review
French Finance Minister Issues Declaration of Independence – from the U.S.
John V. Walsh

Caitlin Johnstone 

New Atlas: AP News Confirms NO Uyghur Genocide in Xinjiang China

Xingjian is open to tourism now because the terrorist problem is under control, and Westerners travelling there and finding no evidence of cultural genocide, and that everything seems fine with the Uyghurs. So the West has started backtracking on the propaganda a little bit. 


AP’s recent trip to Xinjiang, China has revealed not only zero evidence of “cultural genocide” but has exposed the lies the Western media (including AP) have told international audiences for years about the conditions in Xijinang and the treatment of the Uyghur people. 


Depending on the public’s ignorance and providing links AP is confident readers will not click on, explore, and discover the contradictions they present to their narrative, AP attempts to backpedal Western narratives to depict the peace and progress they witnessed in Xinjiang as an artificial facade for “invisible” oppression. 




https://youtu.be/78s7yP2BdF0

What is driving China’s e-commerce growth? — Hsiao Chink Tang and Yuying Tang

Perhaps the biggest reason is that China is leapfrogging retail storefronts and going directly to ecommerce. But there are other factors to consider as well. For example, China is highly digitized in many respects that affect retail. 

The result is that the Chinese are turning from savers into consumers, which is an essential in the transformation from an investment-export led economy into a consumer-dominant economy, that is, producing chiefly for the domestic population rather than chiefly for foreigners.

This is what would be expected as an economy develops. The Chinese government has encouraged this transformation using economic and financial policy.

However, the post doesn't consider the downside of growing a consumption economy, namely, the rise of "consumerism" and all that goes with it socially and culturally. 

The Chinese government has decided that it is now necessary to address the negative aspects of neoliberalism while retaining a market-based system of entrepreneurship and market pricing but reducing rent extraction. 

The goal is to direct markets to be socially productive as well as economically productive instead of economically productive but social unproductive and even socially detrimental. This would be expected of a primarily traditional society. The government has been behind the curve on this so far and is now playing catch-up as a matter of perceived necessity, both to preserve the culture and retain power.

The method seems to be to balance traditionalism and liberalism in an integrative way that promotes social harmony and protects against excessive individualism that threatens the social fabric, as it assesses is happening elsewhere, primarily in the US.

It's a delicate balance being aimed at and not simple to achieve for a country with a population of over a billion people whose appetite for consumption has been whetted and the structure is in place to satisfy it.

And then there is the challenge of climate change involving the carbon footprint. This dictates that needs have to prioritized over wants in order to limit energy use before non-carbon sources become dominant.

East Asia Forum
What is driving China’s e-commerce growth? 
Hsiao Chink Tang, ANU, and Yuying Tang, NetEase Games



Freight rates drop on popular shipping routes in sign that supply chains normalise soon — International Shipping News

Light at the end of the tunnel.

Hellenic Shipping News
Freight rates drop on popular shipping routes in sign that supply chains normalise soon
International Shipping News

Bill Mitchell — The British Chancellor cannot run short of sterling unless he chooses to do so

It’s Wednesday and my blog-lite day or so it seems. Today I briefly discuss the proposition that the British government can run short of sterling. It cannot unless it chooses to do so. And the basis for choosing to do so would be deeply irrational and irresponsible, when judged from the perspective of advancing the well-being of the citizens. I also reflect on the vested interests in the financial markets and the way they get platforms in the media and policy making circles to advance their sectional interests (profit). And mostly, we just have a 33 minute musical feast to reflect upon....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
The British Chancellor cannot run short of sterling unless he chooses to do so
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Navarro: stagflation is already here


Seems like everyone is all in on “stagflation!”… or have to be very close to all in..






 





Myth-Busting: Money Printing Must Create Inflation, By Nicolas Rabener

Some investors are betting on inflation to follow the spike in the money supply in 2020. While this is possible, the money supply has been increasing for more than a decade but inflation has fallen consistently over the same time period.


The UK data highlights a strong positive correlation between the BOE’s balance sheet, money supply, and inflation between 1947 and 1995. But thereafter, the relationships broke down. Money supply and inflation still moved in tandem, but the central bank activity seemed largely irrelevant


Further Thoughts

Similar analysis on the eurozone reflects the same trend: Central bank money printing is largely irrelevant to money supply and inflation.


Given their typical mandate to create moderate inflation, the all-powerful central banks seem quite powerless. Or they are simply fighting forces they cannot overcome: namely, the negative demographics and negative productivity growth that contribute to low economic growth.


Should investors worry about the mass money printing by central banks? Certainly. It has distorted financial markets and inflated prices across asset classes. But perhaps this simply leads to lower future returns rather than higher inflation.


CFA Institute 


"Myth-Busting: Money Printing Must Create Inflation | CFA Institute Enterprising Investor"


 Myth-Busting: Money Printing Must Create Inflation, By Nicolas Rabener



Tuesday, October 12, 2021

The Triumph and Terror of Wang Huning — N. S. Lyons

Important. 

Gets off to a bit of a slow start but hang in there.

Palladium
The Triumph and Terror of Wang Huning
N. S. Lyons

Links — 12 Oct 2021 — Hostility Increasing

India Punchline
A face-off over Nord Stream 2
M. K. Bhadrakumar | retired diplomat with the Indian Foreign Service


Strategic Culture Foundation
Nuclear Weapons and Europe
Brian Cloughley | British and Australian armies’ veteran, former deputy head of the UN military mission in Kashmir and Australian defense attaché in Pakistan

Zero Hedge
Russia Launches Missiles During Warship Drills Inside Japan's Exclusive Economic Zone

The Intercept
Revealed: Facebook’s Secret Blacklist of “Dangerous Individuals and Organizations”
Sam Biddle

MintPress News
US Writes Belarus into Its Familiar Regime-Change Script
Alan Macleod

Oilprice
Why U.S. LNG Is Going To Asia Instead Of Europe
Irina Slav

TASS
Russia plans to produce over 700 airplanes by 2030 — transport ministry


Paul Jay and Adolph Reed - The Whole Country is the Reichstag

 Adolph Reed says how some of the left are playing right into the hands of the fascist, authoritarian, alt-right when they engage in anti-govt rhetoric, like their anti-vaccination and anti-mask mandates. 


He also says how it backfired on the liberals when they told poor white Americans - whose communities had collapsed because all their jobs had been off-shores - about White Privalage, as they did not feel privileged at all. 


Adolph Reed says, "The right-wing political alliance anchored by the Republican party and Trumpism coheres around a single concrete objective— taking absolute power in the U.S. as soon and as definitively as possible."




Paul Jay and Adolph Reed - The Whole Country is the Reichstag


Excerpt



Anti-Vaxxer Faking Vaccine Side Effects on TikTok

Scammers who ask the public for money to help them pay for a cure for an injury they say they got from a vaccine. 



https://youtu.be/_X_ji7CEXqM


Excerpt



Ian Verrender - Have climate deniers fuelled the rise of COVID anti-vaxxers?

 A very good article about why so many people distrust the government and vaccine:

Big Pharma, Big Corporatuons, and a government that on the whole couldn't care less about them. 


Along with a growing mistrust of what has become known as MSM (mainstream media) in the new millennium, there has been an erosion in respect for the political process and a backlash against the corporate world, particularly multinational corporations.


It is particularly strong among youth


Should it come as a surprise then, that suspicion around vaccines has arisen, and occasionally from sources where you would least expect it?


The intersection between government and big business — large pharmaceutical companies that stand to make huge profits from vaccines — has only added to the fear and mistrust.


That's been elevated by the extended lockdowns, which have damaged — in some cases permanently — the livelihoods and businesses of large sections of the population; damage that flows on into personal lives, relationships and mental health.


It is not an environment conducive to rational thought and argument.


"Have climate deniers fuelled the rise of COVID anti-vaxxers? - ABC News"


 Ian Verrender - Have climate deniers fuelled the rise of COVID anti-vaxxers?

Muqtada The Conqueror gains ground in Iraqi poll — Pepe Escobar

 Backgrounder.

The Vineyard of the Saker
Muqtada The Conqueror gains ground in Iraqi poll
Pepe Escobar

See also

People's Dispatch
Muqtada al-Sadr-led alliance set to emerge as single largest force in Iraqi parliament

Managers Should Satisfy Only the Ethically Permissible Preferences of Shareholders — Santiago Mejia

The amendment I am proposing—namely, that executives should only maximize the ethically permissible preferences of shareholders—would not be necessary if shareholders’ preferences and values were ethically permissible. However, it is mistaken to assume that this will always be the case. Some shareholders may be immoral or their self-interest may cloud their ethical judgments.
The current view has been, if it is legal, it is ethical. This is defended by the view that government should not be the arbiter of morality in a liberal state. This leads to various paradoxes of liberalism, where social, political and economic liberalism come into conflict.

ProMarket — The blog of the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business
Managers Should Satisfy Only the Ethically Permissible Preferences of Shareholders
Santiago Mejia | assistant professor of business ethics at the Gabelli School of Business, Fordham University

The Real Rot at the IMF — Jayati Ghosh

The “Doing Business” controversy has shaken confidence in the World Bank and the IMF. But it must not obscure the real problems with the Bretton Woods institutions: the disproportionate power of the US, the IMF’s deeply procyclical approach, and G7 economies’ unwillingness to enable multilateral bodies to address global problems....
Project Syndicate
The Real Rot at the IMF
Jayati Ghosh | Professor of Economics at the Centre for Economic Studies and Planning, School of Social Sciences, at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, in New Delhi

See also at PS

TINA spokesmen. Neoliberalism or bust.
China’s leaders think that they can crack down on the country’s private technology sector and still deliver material progress as state-owned companies take over. But by reversing the policies that enabled decades of rapid growth, they risk imperiling the unique economic model they seek to sustain.

Not only the Chinese leadership but many others realized that China could not sustain the level of growth it experienced while developing essentially from scratch and that a transition was needed. They also realized that the level of inequality and its blistering rate of increase was socially and politically unsustainable.  Neoliberal ideologues, not so much.

China's Self-Destructive Tech Takedown
William R. Rhodes, a former Chairman, CEO, and President of Citibank, is President and CEO of William R. Rhodes Global Advisors, LLC and author of Banker to the World: Leadership Lessons from the Front Lines of Global Finance, and Stuart P.M. Mackintosh, Executive Director of the Group of Thirty

What should economics be? Cogs & Monsters out today! — Diane Coyle

Basic message: focus should be on institutions and not on markets.
Economic analysis should concern institutions and not focus on markets. The top academics know this and do outstanding work recognising these features of the world, but it has not changed the basics. For example, the instinct is to start with ‘the market’ and find ‘failures’; but it’s all failures out there and we should be starting with ‘institutions’. And the academic discipline concentrates on quantitative answers to narrow, well-defined problems, instead of tackling the big questions of today.… 

Duh. This is what heterodox economists have been saying since the days of Marx and Veblen.  It's about asymmetry and and the source of asymmetry is traceable to asymmetry in  class structure, class power, and income and asset distribution that is both cultural and institutional. Under such conditions, markets left to market forces are going to result in highly asymmetrical outcomes that are the consequence of imperfect markets, for markets also have an institutional basis, e.g., in law, and property rights in particular.

There are lots of parallels between the Econ and tech worlds, including His being coded as ‘homo economics’. But at least everyone is talking about AI ethics. This needs to happen in economics too, reviving political economy and rebooting welfare economics.

I expect critics of economics to agree and lots of economists to disagree. They will point to great papers about X, Y and Z, and will be correct. But the complacency troubles me, the failure to recognise that so few people want to study economics because of the way it is, and that so many blame it for the state of the world….

I recall taking Econ 101 using the Samuelson textbook that was popular at the times. I and many of my friends were, like, WTF? It was clear that the assumptions were not in accord with the way the world worked from our experience. But you kept your mouth shut and provided the answers expected. At least the world was working then (for our class). Now more students are recognizing that it is not working for them are speaking out and demanding better. (Note: Robert Heilbroner's The Worldly Philosophers was required reading though, so we did get some other points of view.)

Interestingly, I did not run into C. Wright Mills' s The Power Elite until I was studying social and political philosophy in grad school.

The Enlightened Economist
What should economics be? Cogs & Monsters out today!
Diane Coyle | freelance economist and a former advisor to the UK Treasury. She is a member of the UK Competition Commission and is acting Chairman of the BBC Trust, the governing body of the British Broadcasting Corporation

Bill Mitchell — The one-trick New Keynesian ponies are back in town

I learned long ago that when you consult a surgeon the recommendation will be surgery. After about 10 or more knee operations (both legs) as a result of sporting injuries, and, then some, to undo the damage done by previous surgery, I ran into a physiotherapist who had a different take on things. He showed me ways the body can respond to different treatments and retain the capacity for high-level training and performance even with existing damage. I still run a lot and his advice was worth a lot. The point is to watch out for one-trick ponies. The analogy is not quite correct because sometimes surgeons get it right. I don’t think the same can be said for a mainstream economist, who are also one-trick ponies. If you ask a mainstream economist what to do about macroeconomic policy they recommend hiking interest rates and cutting fiscal stimulus if the CPI starts to head north, irrespective of circumstances. But the message is getting blurred by realities, especially since the GFC. More pragmatic policy makers realise that just responding in the textbook manner hasn’t provided a sustainable basis for nations to follow. In the last week, we have seen the contradiction between the one-trick ponies, who are desperate to get back into their textbook comfort zone, and those who see the data more clearly. In Britain, one part of the Bank of England, the Financial Policy Committee has indicated the way forward is going to require careful policy support for businesses because many SMEs have loaded up on debt during the pandemic and face a precarious future. In the same week, a private sector bank economist, who is also an external member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, called for interest rate hikes and a deeper withdrawal of fiscal support (and central bank coordination of that support) to deal with, an as yet, unclear inflation threat....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
The one-trick New Keynesian ponies are back in town
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Bannon: "This Is Going to Be the Bleakest, Darkest Christmas in Memory"

 

Playing off recent "The Shortage Economy" headline at The Economist magazine... Now going beyond “stagflation!”:






Monday, October 11, 2021

Chinese ‘Disinformation’ and US Propaganda — Joshua Cho

Information warfare — "our news" you can trust versus "their lies." 

No, I am not talking here about US domestic politics, although it applies there, too.

FAIR
Chinese ‘Disinformation’ and US Propaganda
Joshua Cho

See also

The Scum
"'Government without newspapers.'" The manufacture of ignorance.
Patrick Lawrence


Related

MR Online
Bellingcat funded by U.S. and UK intelligence contractors that aided extremists in Syria

The Supply Chain Crisis: How We Got Here — Yves Smith

 Boils down to emphasizing efficiency at the expense of resilience. The global system therefore became overly brittle instead of suitably flexible as interconnectivity increased.

Naked Capitalism
The Supply Chain Crisis: How We Got Here
Yves Smith

Problems with Modern Monetary Theory (MMT)

I thought the replies were interesting, where not many people agreed with the criticism. 






"Nick Hudson of PANDA doesn't want you to get vaccinated so he can make money | MyBroadband Forum"

My enemies on twitter nowadays seem to be the alt left, (well, I don't meet the alt-right very often), which includes Caitlin Jonestone, Jonathan Cook, and a few other leading left wingers who I've had fights with on twitter recently over their Covid conspiracies. 

And Richard Werner is completely off his rocker - a chemtrails guy. There isn't a conspiracy theory he doesn't believe. 

Taylor Hudak, Julian Assange's lawyer and a covid conspiracist, tweeted about Nick Hudson the other day. Who is Nick Hudson, I asked, and I proceded to tell her?


One of the most outspoken local Covid-19 vaccine sceptics has a direct business interest in a locally produced alternative medicine.


Nick Hudson is the chairperson of Pandemic - Data Analytics, better known as PANDA. Although Hudson denies that PANDA is anti-vaccination, many articles the group has published make incorrect claims about Covid vaccines and dissuade people from getting vaccinated, contradicting public health advice.


Instead the group advocates for unproven treatments for Covid, like ivermectin, and disproven treatments, like hydroxychloroquine. Recently PANDA has begun calling for research into “nutraceuticals” — a popular type of medicine in the alternative health industry — for treating Covid. outspoken-south-african-anti-vaxxer-has-commercial-interest-alternative-medicine


Hudson is a director of a nutraceutical manufacturing company called Brenn-O-Kem.


  "Nick Hudson of PANDA doesn't want you to get vaccinated so he can make money | MyBroadband Forum"


Nick Hudson and PANDA are wrong about everything. 


Nick Hudson and PANDA are wrong. Believing them is deadly


Vaccines are working in South Africa. Here’s the proof


Vincent Brussee - China’s Social Credit System Is Actually Quite Boring

A supposedly Orwellian system is fragmented, localized, and mostly targeted at businesses.


The SCS’s main aim is to improve the enforcement of legal and administrative rules. Food safety scandals are a recurring problem in China, as are workplace safety issues, wage arrears, and noncompliance with contracts and court orders. When it came to tackling these problems, there were laws in place, but enforcement was lackluster,..


 China’s Social Credit System Is Actually Quite Boring

Sunday, October 10, 2021

China issues outline to promote standardized national development — Xinhua

With improvements to be made in the standardized management system with Chinese characteristics, a market-driven, government-guided and enterprise-oriented standardized development pattern featuring mass participation and opening-up and integration will take shape in China by 2035....
Longterm development strategy for a managed economy.

ECNS
China issues outline to promote standardized national development
Xinhua (Chinese state media)

See also

Negative list for market access to be further shortened
China Daily (Chinese state-sponsored media)

Trump tried to appoint Ivanka to head the World Bank: report — Tom Boggioni

 You've probably seen this reported already, but still.…

Salon
Trump tried to appoint Ivanka to head the World Bank: report
Tom Boggioni

Zero Hedge — Gazprom Hikes Export Prices As Moscow Urges Europe To Fix Ties To Avoid More Gas Shortages

 Typically snarky post but also with some apparently factual information, too. 

Bottom line is that the Europeans are outraged at Russia for not supplying more gas at a lower price when European policy resulted in the crisis in the first place. Other factors at work, too, but European policy failures seem to be the fundamental reason behind it. Or maybe they were relying on the promise of American LNG. So where is it?

Zero Hedge
Gazprom Hikes Export Prices As Moscow Urges Europe To Fix Ties To Avoid More Gas Shortages
Tyler Durden

The Science Of Propaganda Is Still Being Developed And Advanced — Caitlin Johnstone

Builds on Ben Norton's post at The Grayzone about "brain warfare" as the latest iteration in the arsenal of hybrid warfare. And, yes, it is being used domestically as well. Not that this is anything new. What's new is the openness in declaring it.

CaitlinJohnstone.com
The Science Of Propaganda Is Still Being Developed And Advanced
Caitlin Johnstone

See Also

The Guardian (UK)
Singapore’s new ‘foreign interference’ law leaves journalists like me with an impossible puzzle
Kirsten Han

Bill Mitchell — US labour market–recovery in a fairly languid state

Last Friday (October 8, 2021), the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released their latest labour market data – Employment Situation Summary – September 2021 – which reported a total payroll employment rise of only 194,000 jobs in August and a 0.4 points decline in the official unemployment rate to 4.8 per cent. The combination of rising employment and falling unemployment might suggest that things are improving. But the reality is that the active labour force shrunk significantly as the participation rate fell by 0.1 points in the face of declining employment opportunities. The results suggest that the labour market recovery has slowed quite significantly from the situation mid-year. The US labour market is still 4,970 thousand jobs short from where it was at the end of February 2020, which helps to explain why there are no fundamental wage pressures emerging. Further, it is clear that there has been a slight bias towards low pay jobs being added in the recovery at the expense of above-median wage jobs, particularly in the service occupations....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
US labour market – recovery in a fairly languid state
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Saturday, October 9, 2021

Links —9 Oct 2021

Moon of Alabama [Taliban are in a good position to play the US off with China and Russia]
The U.S. Wants Back Into Afghanistan

The Grayzone [battle for your brain, reminiscent of brainwashing]
Behind NATO’s ‘cognitive warfare’: ‘Battle for your brain’ waged by Western militaries
Ben Norton

Sputnik International [like USSR putting missiles in Cuba in reaction to US putting missiles in Turkey]

Paris Marx

Truthout [adding value or gorging at the federal trough?]
David Moore

RT
The US cannot defend Taiwan, and China knows it
Scott Ritter, former US Marine Corps intelligence officer and author of 'SCORPION KING: America's Suicidal Embrace of Nuclear Weapons from FDR to Trump.' He served in the Soviet Union as an inspector implementing the INF Treaty, in General Schwarzkopf’s staff during the Gulf War, and from 1991-1998 as a UN weapons inspector

China’s Xi calls Taiwan’s independence push ‘serious hidden danger’ & promises ‘peaceful reunification’ with self-governed island

Slate (China's long-term plan is simply to absorb Taiwan but will fight for it in the short-term if pushed)
China’s President Xi Vows “Peaceful Reunification” With Taiwan Amid Heightened Tensions
Daniel Politi




Elie Dolgin - The tangled history of mRNA vaccines

 Hundreds of scientists had worked on mRNA vaccines for decades before the coronavirus pandemic brought a breakthrough.


You can see why Robert Malone became so disappointed and bitter, he was one of the first to experiment with mRNA technology, but he made some bad decisions and ended up in the wrong place at the wrong time and lost out. He doesn't feel he's getting the credit he deserves or the rewards. 


The debate over who deserves credit for pioneering the technology is heating up as awards start rolling out — and the speculation is getting more intense in advance of the Nobel prize announcements next month. But formal prizes restricted to only a few scientists will fail to recognize the many contributors to mRNA’s medical development. In reality, the path to mRNA vaccines drew on the work of hundreds of researchers over more than 30 years.


 Elie Dolgin - The tangled history of mRNA vaccines

LEONID SCHNEIDER - How Dr Robert Malone invented Antivaxxery

A detailed look at the mad world of Dr Robert Malone.

Robert Malone says he is the real inventor of mRNA vaccines and this is why you must trust him when he warns those vaccines are deadly. Instead, to protect yourself against COVID-19 you should take ivermectin, hydroxychloroquine, fluvoxamine, Vitamin D and of course the hurt-burn drug famotidine. In a bucket, probably.

With Dr Malone eagerly going to bed with quacks, antivaxxers and far-right white supremacists (like Steve Bannon), it is a bit reminiscent of the paranoid conspiracy theorist and COVID-19-denialist Judy Mikovits, who by being a former virologist is the proper scientific authority whom these people will accept. Incidentally also an article by Smut Clyde!



Finance capital and the World Economy — Prabhat Patnaik

THE period of neo-liberalism [corporate capture of the government] witnesses an increase in the share of economic surplus in total output [aggregate economic rent inherent in commodity production in monetary production economies] both in individual countries and also for the world as a whole. This is because the “opening” up of the economy to freer trade in goods and services leads to a rapid introduction of structural-cum-technological change, which, because of its labour-displacing character, keeps down the growth rate of employment, to even below the natural growth-rate of the work-force. The resulting increase in the relative size of the reserve army of labor [surplus workforce] restrains the level of real wages everywhere, even as labour productivity grows massively [through scaling technological innovation], causing a rise in the share of economic surplus [rent extracted by the owners of the means of production].

Such a shift from wages to surplus [rent extraction] depresses the level of consumption demand [effective demand], and hence aggregate demand, and causes a tendency towards an over-production crisis [surplus production]. Since fiscal conservatism at the insistence of finance capital, prevents any offsetting of this tendency through State spending, the only possible counter to it within a neo-liberal economy, is provided by asset price bubbles that also have the effect of boosting demand [wealth effect]. But even if such a bubble perchance gets generated that keeps at bay the over-production crisis for a while, its collapse again pushes the economy into a crisis.... [Minsky]...

MR Online
Finance capital and the World Economy
Prabhat Patnaik | Indian Marxist economist and political commentator, Professor (retired) at the Centre for Economic Studies and Planning in the School of Social Sciences at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi (1974-2010) and formerly vice-chairman of Kerala State Planning Board (2006-2011)

China marches on towards Fourth Industrial Revolution — David P. Goldman

Competitiveness. 

Goldman is one of the more astute China-watchers.

Asia Times
China marches on towards Fourth Industrial Revolution
David P. Goldman

Friday, October 8, 2021

GOP governors who ended unemployment benefits failed to spur job growth: September numbers — Jon Skolnik

So much for that assumption.

The results are coming in. Why won't people go back to work? Fear of COVID, inadequate compensation for the work and risk, and matching skills with requirements — a lot of people report seeking work to meet their qualifications and not finding any reasonable offers. People are reluctant to take a job that promises either a downward trajectory or getting stuck in work that is beneath their level of experience, ie., under-employed. It's not a simple as comparing the number of job openings and people who are unemployed, as many seem to presume.

Building a Predistributive Democracy on the Ruins of Market Justice — Oleg Komlik

Review of Somers, Margaret R. 2021. “Toward a Predistributive Democracy: Diagnosing Oligarchy, Dedemocratization, and the Deceits of Market Justice,” in The Condition of Democracy: Neoliberal Politics and Sociological Perspectives, edited by Jürgen Mackert, Hannah Wolf, and Bryan Turner.

Economic Sociology and Political Economy
Building a Predistributive Democracy on the Ruins of Market Justice
Oleg Komlik | founder and editor-in-chief of the ES/PE, Chairman of the Junior Sociologists Network at the International Sociological Association, a PhD Candidate in Economic Sociology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Ben-Gurion University, and a Lecturer in the School of Behavioral Sciences at the College of Management Academic Studies

Numuves - US-funded Uyghur Tribunal CAN'T find EVIDENCE! Numuves - Hilarious media stunt!

See the young lady presenting the evidence continuously squirm as she says, "oh I'm not sure about that, oh!" 


This whole media stunt was supposed to be a walk in the park for everyone who was paid to be there until one professor decided to ask real questions. It got real funny after that!




https://youtu.be/mCtOh_7_tDo





Noel Lee - Singaporean exposes CNN Chinese whistleblower torture of Uyghur prisoners in XinJiang

 The policeman being interviewed says that he defected from China because his job was to intergate innocent Uyghurs and put them in concentration camps. During the interview he is wearing his policeman suit, which he says was the one that he wore in China. So, when fleeing China - where he might never return - to go all the way to Europe, he grabbed as many possessions as he possibly could and shoved them all, along with his policeman's suit, into his suitcase. 


This video is my opinions and reaction to the CNN video in which their correspondent based in Hong Kong, a Mr Ivan Watson interviewed a Uyghur man who is now a kindergarten teacher in Norway, as well as an unknown man who claims and "proves" that he is a former police officer from China, by simply showing up in a police uniform and showing some xerox A3 sized print outs, who escaped China but is keeping his identity a secret to "protect" his family still in China.






Sputnik — Western Europe May Not Weather the Winter Without Russian Gas

No problem. The Nordstream 2 pipeline will be filled with gas by November according to Gazprom. BTW, what happened to the US LNG that was supposed to replace Russian gas?

Sputnik International
Western Europe May Not Weather the Winter Without Russian Gas
Nevin Brown

Anyone Who’d Support Going To War Over Taiwan Is A Crazy Idiot — Caitlin Johnstone

Another timely rant.

CaitlinJohnstone.com
Anyone Who’d Support Going To War Over Taiwan Is A Crazy Idiot
Caitlin Johnstone

China’s Central Bank Governor Vows More Fintech Crackdown — Bloomberg News

Sounds like a plan, especially now with the implosion of RE speculation. The bottom line seems to be controlling systemic risk. Second is addressing sources of economic rent extraction, monopoly in particular. It appears they have thought this through and it is not a knee-jerk reaction.

Yahoo Finance
China’s Central Bank Governor Vows More Fintech Crackdown
Bloomberg News

Full of Gas — Paul Robinson

 Paul Robinson calls BS on blaming Putin for the gas crisis in Europe.

Irrussianality
Full of Gas
Paul Robinson | Professor, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa

Global Corporate Tax Rate Deal Agreed On by Over a Hundred Countries — Andrei Dergalin

Of course, the bug is enforcement. Plus, stronger nations will likely dominate (domineer). Hard to see how this actually works on the practical level.

Sputnik International
Global Corporate Tax Rate Deal Agreed On by Over a Hundred Countries
Andrei Dergalin

Mint the $1 Trillion Coin to Fight Climate Change — Kate Aronoff

“If we’re actually trying to create a paradigm shift, where average people can start to understand how money works,” [Rohan] Grey added, “the coin is big enough and loud enough and shocking enough to cut through the noise and reframe the entire debate.” The starting point for that shift, he says, is to create a widespread recognition that debt and money financing are “functionally equivalent.”...
The New Republic
Mint the $1 Trillion Coin to Fight Climate Change | The New Republic
Kate Aronoff, staff writer at The New Republic

‘Money’ in Marx and MMT and Social Implications — Peter Cooper

For both Marx and MMTers, money is a social relationship. For Marx, the social relationship is fetishized in a commodity for reasons that stem from the nature of commodity production. Money only becomes necessary, for Marx, when it is impossible for a currency to represent social labor time directly, which is the case under commodity production in which concrete labors are converted into abstract labor (i.e. marxian value) only indirectly through the workings of the ‘law’ of value. For MMTers, ‘money’ is a social relationship that originates in debt. Debt relations can apply whether labor is directly social or only indirectly social (as in commodity production). Money, in MMT, is therefore a broader notion than in Marx. If Marx and MMTers meant the same thing by the word ‘money’, Marx’s view of the origins of money – as arising out of commodity production – would be irreconcilable with MMT. But Marx and MMTers do not mean the same thing by the word ‘money’. In MMT’s use of the term, the currency functions as money under commodity and non-commodity production alike, whereas in Marx’s terminology, the currency is a representative of money under commodity production but simply currency under non-commodity production. So far as economic implications go, these naming differences are not important so long as we keep them in mind....
heteconomist
‘Money’ in Marx and MMT and Social Implications
Peter Cooper