Wednesday, September 27, 2023

War of Economic Corridors: the India-Mideast-Europe ploy — Pepe Escobar

 The India-Middle East-Europe transportation corridor may be the talk of the town, but it will likely go the way of the last three Asia-to-Europe connectivity projects touted by the west - to the dustbin. Here's why.…

The Cradle
War of Economic Corridors: the India-Mideast-Europe ploy
Pepe Escobar




Challenges to the strong golden rule: MMT and bond market paranoia — Simon Wren-Lewis

SWL is still caught in the monetarist fallacy. 
MMT has two arguments against the golden rule, which I will call reasonable and unreasonable. The unreasonable argument is that interest rate increases do not reduce aggregate demand and inflation, and therefore fiscal policy has to play the macro stabilisation role at all times. It is an unreasonable claim because it contradicts the large amount of evidence that higher interest rates do reduce aggregate demand and inflation, evidence that you will find in the academic economic literature.
Those who watch Mike Norman's YouTube channel, which is MMT-based financial analysis, will find evidence presented that contradicts this.

Mainly Macro
Challenges to the strong golden rule: MMT and bond market paranoia
Simon Wren-Lewis | Emeritus Professor of Economics, Oxford University

Trump is Fighting an American Class War – and Winning — Joel Kotkin

 The most important political event this week will not be the upcoming GOP debate but Donald Trump’s expected visit with striking UAW workers as the walkout expands to other states. In that one appearance, Trump demonstrates one of the most critical parts of political change, the emergence of the populist right.…

Once hostile to unions, Republicans like Florida’s Senator Marco Rubio, Ohio’s JD Vance and Missouri’s Josh Hawley have all pledged support to the strikers. Union-affiliated Democrats may find this “laughable,” but perhaps not so amusing on election day. Certainly, Biden is doing his best to expand his working-class base. 

The rest of the article is about how workers have been disadvantaged by Democratic economic policy. This began in the Clinton administration when Bill Clinton followed Dick Morris's advice to "triangulate," which meant essentially shifting the focus of the Democratic Party away from the New Deal, with its support for labor, following political losses as a result of the Gingrich revolution in the GOP.  Now the GOP is aiming at pick up the labor vote.

In other words, the demographics of the US are shifting politically in a way that challenges old stereotypes.

Newgeography.com
Trump is Fighting an American Class War – and Winning
Joel Kotkin

Remembering Jim Crotty — JW Mason

Perhaps the most distinctive aspect of Jim’s pedagogy and scholarship, almost alone among economists we have known, was his ability to synthesise these two thinkers in ways that gave equal weight to both, that placed them in conversation rather than in tension. Crotty’s Marx anticipates Minsky, while his Keynes is a political radical – a socialist – in ways that few others have recognized.

Perhaps his most profound contribution to both traditions was the brilliant 1985 article “The Centrality of Money, Credit, and Financial Intermediation in Marx’s Crisis Theory” (Crotty 1985). There, he developed the idea that the Marxian vision of capitalist crises could only be understood in terms of the development of the credit and the financial system – that it was only via financial commitments that a fall in the profit rate could lead to an abrupt crisis rather than just a slower pace of accumulation. His reconstruction of a vision of the credit system that may either dampen or amplify disruptions to the underlying process of production suggests that Marx anticipated the ideas about financial fragility later developed in the Post Keynesian tradition. With a critical difference: While Minsky has finance calling the tune, in the Marx-Crotty version the ultimate source of instability is in the real world of labor and capital.
J. W. Mason's Blog
Remembering Jim Crotty
JW Mason | Associate Professor of Economics at John Jay College, City University of New York and a Fellow at the Roosevelt Institute

At Least It's Not As Bad As 1994 — Brian Romanchuk

The current Treasury bear market has been impressive, and unfortunately for the bond bulls, there is no valuation reason for it to stop. For example, the 5-year Treasury is still trading well below the overnight rate. If we look back to the 1994 bond bear market, the 5-year traded about 250 basis points above cash — versus about 100 basis points below now.

The explanation for this disparity can be pinned on the Fed reaction function....
Bond Economics

Monday, September 25, 2023

Trump up 10% over Brandon

 

If this thing holds Trumps going to immediately slash rates in half on day 1 in January 2025… lock it…



Meanwhile all the Art degree morons are all going around saying “ the Fed is independent! … the Fed is independent!…. the Fed is independent!”  




Thursday, September 21, 2023

It will end badly if we rely on the speculators and gamblers for a climate change solution — Bill Mitchell

I am now in a very hot and humid Kyoto having left Australia yesterday in weather that was in some places 20 or more degrees Celsius above the norm for early Spring. The heat here and back home at this time of year is rather scary given what it portends. I also do not have much time today given I have been contending with various ‘moving in’ requirements. But I read an article on the plane last night which I think marks a divide between what ‘green’ progressives think and what I think is needed. I was talking to a friend the other day who remarked he was enduring what he termed ‘ecological anxiety’. In the week that followed, bushfires across Australia have started burning some months earlier than has been the typical pattern over a long period. There are massive ‘weather’ events now all around the globe and it is becoming increasingly difficult for the sceptics to dismiss these conjunctions as random or ‘we just haven’t had data long enough’ type ruses. Some ‘green progressives believe the solution lies in governments inducing the financial speculators to shift funds into ‘green’ investments so that profitability can be safeguarded. They also believe that governments will get more money to invest this way (through providing inflation-indexed sovereign bonds). Talk about a vision for increased corporate welfare. My starting point is that we should do everything possible to keep the speculators out of our policy moves to decarbonise. It will end badly if we rely on the gamblers for the solution.
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
It will end badly if we rely on the speculators and gamblers for a climate change solution
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

MMT Money Story - Print and Shred Edition — NeilW

Print and Shred is how the system works. All modern monetary systems work this way, no matter how much they try and hide the fact.

The MMT money story explains where the ‘why not print more money’ idea falls over. The government only prints more money to buy more stuff..…
New Wayland

Saturday, September 16, 2023

Trump bemoans high interest rates and indicates he might pressure Fed to lower

 

CNBC here…

Again politics.. You knew this was coming.. can’t wait to now watch all the political biased leftist MMT people flip and join with the monetarist morons and start to advocate for higher interest rates in response.. wait for it…



“Interest rates are very high. They’re too high. People can’t buy homes. They can’t do anything. I mean, they can’t borrow money,” Trump told MTP host Kristen Welker


Using the platform formerly known as Twitter, Trump often berated Fed officials, once calling them “boneheads,” and compared Powell to “a golfer who can’t putt.” Those remarks came while the Fed was raising interest rates in 2018 and 2019.

 

“We do know that I put a lot of pressure on him,” Trump told Welker. “It was outside pressure, because nobody knows whether or not you can really do that, but I did, because I thought his interest rates were too high. And he ultimately dropped his interest rates.



Politics

 

Agree with Ehnts here but if you listen to 99% of the MMT commie Art degree or no degree left the current most regressive economic outcome I’ve ever experienced in my adult life is allegedly the result of improper technocracy by the monetarist morons in the academe…

LOL can’t be both!  Which one is it? 🤔






Thursday, September 14, 2023

Oldest employed Americans have left the workforce never to return


Here for you left wing commie Art Degree MMT dumb fucks:

 S&P Global Market Intelligence 
Oldest employed Americans have left the workforce never to return

The oldest workers in the US labor force, edged out during the pandemic by retirements and health concerns, are unlikely to ever return, potentially ending a decades-long trend amongst working seniors in America and contributing to the ongoing imbalance in the jobs market.


Doesn’t have anything to do with whether your fellow Art degree morons think money is real and we can run out of it as usual… Senior cohort of productive workers being somehow disincentivized to work compared to previous..


MMT “brain trust” (I use that term loosely) somehow blaming their current figure of speech “inflation!” on government’s policy risk free interest rates…

Their as bad as their fellow Art degree monetarists…




Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Capitalist wants government to drive up unemployment by 40-50 per cent and inflict more ‘pain in the economy’ on workers — Bill Mitchell

Two items this Wednesday before the music segment. First, we saw the stark ideology of the elites on full display in Sydney yesterday with a property developer demanding the government increase unemployment by 40-50 per cent to show the workers that the employer is boss and redistribute more national income back to profits. For anyone who doubts the relevance of a framework based on underlying class conflict between labour and capital, then this outburst should eliminate those doubts. On the same day, a leading research group in the welfare sector released an update in their series tracing poverty in Australia. It demonstrated a rising incidence of poverty (nearly 20 per cent of the population) and 1 in 6 children living in impoverished conditions. And the profit takers want more of that to enrich (engorge) themselves even further. A shocking indictment of what has gone wrong with this nation....
While this may seem shocking to some, it is just the way the system works based on its foundational assumptions. Capitalism favors capital (ownership) over labor (people) and land (environment). The purpose of capitalism is the accumulation of capital, the argument being that growing capital increases growth and growth "trickles down" and "lifts all boats. The environment is assumed to be an infinite resource for growth. 

So nothing surprising about this attitude. It's the way the system is structured. According to economic liberalism, optimal growth results from agents pursuing their own interests maximally, which is assumed to be rational economic behavior. 

Economic liberalism favors markets free of government intrusion, whereas neoliberalism promotes growth by governments favoring capital as an economic factor
.
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
Capitalist wants government to drive up unemployment by 40-50 per cent and inflict more ‘pain in the economy’ on workers
Bill Mitchell |rofessor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

See also

The details and commentary from another Aussie.
“We need to remind people that they work for the employer, not the other way around. We need to see unemployment rise, unemployment has to jump 40–50 percent.”
CaitlinJohnstone.com
Caitlin Johnstone 

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Russia And China Channeling Hamilton — Mark Wauk

Read the remarks of Glenn Diesen, Professor at the University of South-Eastern Norway, and Editor at Russia in Global Affairs, about how Russia and China are now following the Hamiltonian plan of the American System or National System, later developed by economist Friedrick List. In other words, these countries are not doing what the nascent US did when breaking away from the British Empire, which was not only political and military but also economic and financial. And the ROW is watching.

Diessen also sees Central Bank of Russia head Elvira Nabiullina as a key player in implementing this plan rather than as the neoliberal she is usually viewed as.

Meaning in History
Russia And China Channeling Hamilton
Mark Wauk, retired FBI agent

See also
 Wallerstein’s first breakthrough came during his experiences in Africa during the process of “decolonization,” where he became aware that young militants in Africa possessed a conceptual framework that was entirely at odds with that of Europeans resident in Africa, a framework in which the African militants defined their reality as a “colonial situation.”  This awareness led Wallerstein to appreciate that a correct understanding must be based in a grasping of the colonial relation between Europe and Africa, which required moving beyond the assumption that society is the correct unit of analysis and moving toward the establishment of the world-system as the correct unit of analysis.…
Knowledge, ideology, and real socialism in our times
Charles McKelvey, Professor Emeritus at Presbyterian College in Clinton, South Carolina, author of The Perspectives of The Colonized (Palgrave)

See also
De Gaulle said: “France’s objective is to build Europe [...] The whole point is that Europe should want to exist as its own self, independently from the U.S.[NATO is] quite simply putting Europe’s defense, nuclear and conventional, in the hands of the U.S. Europe is useless if it doesn’t control its own defense and therefore its own policy. NATO is a subterfuge. It’s a machine to disguise the stranglehold of America over Europe. Thanks to NATO, Europe is placed under the dependence of the U.S. without seeming to be.”
Twitter
Arnaud Bertrand @RnaudBertrand

Moon of Alabama — Kasandras Beware - China Economy Will Not Hit A Wall

Contra Krugman.

Moon of Alabama
Kasandras Beware - China Economy Will Not Hit A Wall

Also

ECNS
Western journalist claiming Shanghai a 'Ghost Town' faces backlash

Monday, September 11, 2023

William Mitchell — The Chilean coup just one link in a complicated right-wing economics agenda to empower capital

Several related strands have come together in the last week of work and thinking. Today (September 11, 2023), of course, is a massive day in history and I am not referring to the year 2001. Today marks the 50th anniversary of the overthrow of the Salvatore Allende’s democratically-elected government in Chile by the US CIA and there local puppets under the leadership of General – Augusto Pinochet. I have also been following a trail of the antecedents of the Powell Manifesto (thanks to Jonathan for a tip), which helps understand how the neoliberals infested every institution in the US and beyond. And the Chilean coup d’état in 1973 was followed by – Operation Condor – which together with the coup demonstrated the principle terrorist organisation in the world has been the US government and its agencies. Tracking the Powell trail also took me to old research about the so-called ‘Manne Programs in Economics for Federal Judges’ – which was a program mostly taught by Chicago School economists that indoctrinated US judges into free market economic thinking and has distorted US judicial decisions ever since. And the circle closes when we investigate the role played by the so-called – Chicago Boys – who were Chilean PhD graduates from that school, who went back to Chile and ravaged the prosperity of the people with their extreme neoliberal ideas. All interlinked events on the path to global neoliberal domination. History is worth studying and it is striking how interrelated all these things are that have come together in my work the last week or so.
Not exactly MMT, but crucial for appreciating the dynamics of the world system and the role of politicized ideological economics in it. This post is about the role of neoliberalism. Presently, both the so-called left and right in the US are deeply entrenched in neoliberal ideology, although this post is about the right.

William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
The Chilean coup just one link in a complicated right-wing economics agenda to empower capital
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Sunday, September 10, 2023

Russia defies sanctions with homemade Sukhoi Superjet — Scott Foster

A Russian passenger jet built almost entirely with domestically manufactured components completed its first test flight on August 29, a launch that gave Yakovlev Design Bureau and United Aircraft Corporation’s (UAC) respective shares on the Moscow Exchange a buoyant lift.


Designed by Yakovlev and manufactured by UAC at its Komsomolsk-na-Amure factory, the new Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ-100) is a narrow-body regional aircraft with a range of 4,578 kilometers (2,472 nautical miles) that can carry 87 to 108 passengers depending on seat configurations....

Coupled with Huawei's new chip, Russia indigenously produced commercial aircraft erode the Western lead in these key fields. 

Asia Times
Russia defies sanctions with homemade Sukhoi Superjet
Scott Foster

The Rise of BRICS and the Fall of the G20 — Larry Johnson

You should not look at the war in Ukraine as an isolated phenomena with no bearing on the global economic order. The war in Ukraine is a symptom of the breakdown in the Western dominated “rules based” international order and this disruption is reverberating around the world. The recent coups in Africa, for example, are another sign that the vassals of the Western feudal lords are no longer willing to be de facto colonial subjects. They want some measure of independence and are turning to Russia and China to find a way out.
Don't focus on particular events, especially shiny objects. Look at the dynamics of the world system.

A Son of the New American Revolution
The Rise of BRICS and the Fall of the G20
Larry C. Johnson | CEO and co-founder of BERG Associates, LLC, an international business-consulting firm with expertise combating terrorism and investigating money laundering, formerly Deputy Director in the U.S. State Department’s Office of Counter Terrorism (1989-1993, and CIA operations (1984-1989)

RT — Moscow releases Russia-China de-dollarization update

The de-dollarization of Russia-China trade is practically complete, according to Georgy Zinoviev, the director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s First Asian Department, as cited by RIA Novosti.…
The share of national currencies in Russian-Chinese payments is growing at an extremely rapid pace,” Zinoviev told the news agency. “At the beginning of 2022 it was hovering around 25%, now it is exceeding 80%.”...
RT — Question More (Russian state-sponsored med
Moscow releases Russia-China de-dollarization update

Thursday, September 7, 2023

Pepe Escobar — No Respite for France as ‘New Africa’ Rises

 "The natives are getting restless." 

Once the bear's claws tore away the veneer, a new era was launched. But it would not have happened without a fire-breathing dragon in the background. Now the long oppressed colonies are standing up. Empire is about securing cheap resources and cheap labor from the colonies, without which the lifestyle of the imperial elite  cannot be sustained.

Consortium News
Pepe Escobar: No Respite for France as ‘New Africa’ Rises

William Mitchell — The tax extreme wealth to increase funds for government spending narrative just reinforces neoliberal framing

Despite the rabble on the Right of politics that marches around driven by conspiracies about government chips in the water supply or Covid vaccines and all the rest of the rot that lot carry on with, the reality is that well-funded Right that is entrenched in the deepest echelons of capital are extremely well organised and strategic, which is why the dominant ideology reflects their preferences. That group appears to be able to maintain a united front which solidifies their effectiveness. By way of contrast, the Left is poorly funded, but more importantly, divided and on important matters appears incapable of breaking free from the fictions and framing that the Right have introduced to further their own agenda. So, the Left is often pursuing causes that appear to be ‘progressive’ and which warm their hearts, but which in reality are just reinforcing the framing that advance the interests of the Right. We saw that again this week with the emergence of the Tax Extreme Wealth movement and with the release of their open letter to the G20 Heads of State – G20 Leaders must tax extreme wealth. This ia the work of a group which includes the so-called Patriotic Millionaires, Oxfam, Millionaires for Humanity, Earth4All and the Institute for Policy Studies. It demonstrates perfectly how these progressive movements advance dialogue and framing which actually end up undermining their own ambitions.
I am not sure whether "right" and "left" are useful descriptors. As Bill observes, the positions are conflated and the real differences of positions are obscured. The differences are in rhetoric only. There are strong cultural and institutional biases operative that act as hidden assumptions influencing the framing in a neoliberal direction. 

What Bill has called "neoliberal tendencies" go unnoticed, even among some MMT proponents, as Bill has also pointed out in his comment section over the years. Escaping the framing as a set of hidden assumptions is difficult and most don't make it out of the box. We see this is a strong monetarist bias in econ and finance as well as politics, for example.

William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
The tax extreme wealth to increase funds for government spending narrative just reinforces neoliberal framing
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Michael Hudson — Naked Capitalism–Your Guide, Philosopher, and Friend in Times of Crisis

Fundraiser for a very worthy cause.
This is Naked Capitalism fundraising week. 155 donors have already invested in our efforts to combat corruption and predatory conduct, particularly in the financial realm. Please join us and participate via our donation page, which shows how to give via check, credit card, debit card, or PayPal. Read about why we’re doing this fundraiser, what we’ve accomplished in the last year,, and our current goal, strengthening our IT infrastructure.

Michael Hudson: Naked Capitalism – Your Guide, Philosopher, and Friend in Times of Crisis

Also

KLG: What Naked Capitalism Means to Me


On a different note, also at NC

Biden Approves $40 Billion Worth Of Drugs To Be Airdropped To Burning Man
Babylon Bee [satire]




Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Reuters — Teardown of Huawei’s new phone shows China’s chip breakthrough

 That didn't take long.

Huawei's Mate 60 Pro is powered by a new Kirin 9000s chip that was made in China by Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC), TechInsights said in the report shared with Reuters on Monday.

Huawei started selling its Mate 60 Pro phone last week. The specifications provided advertised its ability to make satellite calls, but offered no information on the power of the chipset inside....

Buyers of the phone in China have been posting tear-down videos and sharing speed tests on social media that suggest the Mate 60 Pro is capable of download speeds exceeding those of top line 5G phones…...
Reuters

Also

Important.

Moon of Alabama

Inflation And The Labour Market — Brian Romanchuk

The usual response to critics who state things like I just did is “give me a better model.” The idea is that we need to replace one reductionist model with another reductionist model. The reasoning seems to be that economics is like physics, where a lot of the history of the field is doing exactly that. (Physicists might be getting into “complexity,” which may or may not be a mathematical pseudo-science. In any event, this is not what people have in mind when they compare economics to physics.) If inflation is a complicated process, any reductionist model is going to fail.

Any empirical work on the link between inflation and the labour market is going to run into a snag that is the result of what I argue are relatively non-controversial positions.…

Bond Economics
Inflation And The Labour Market
Brian Romanchuk

Thursday, August 31, 2023

Vietnam, Philippines and Brunei to join cross-border QR payment scheme — Erwida Maulia And Ismi Damayanti

Vietnam, the Philippines and Brunei will join other major Southeast Asian economies in an interconnected QR code payment system that aims to promote use of local currencies and reduce dependence on the U.S. dollar.

Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore are already progressing with the implementation of bilateral transactions using QR codes among one another -- which was initiated last year, said Perry Warjiyo, governor of Indonesia's central bank, on Friday.…
Nikkei Asia
Vietnam, Philippines and Brunei to join cross-border QR payment scheme
Erwida Maulia And Ismi Damayanti, Nikkei Staff Writers

The US Problem With China: Beijing Is Better at Capitalism — Patrick Lawrence

As it provokes a new Cold War, the U.S. is warning that its corporate and financial interests, which came first after the 1980s Dengist reforms, no longer take precedence, writes Patrick Lawrence.
Consortium News
The US Problem With China: Beijing Is Better at Capitalism
Patrick Lawrence

GoFundMe, Go To Hell — Matt Taibbi

Censorship moves to a new level in denying funding.

Racket News
GoFundMe, Go To Hell
Matt Taibbi

William Mitchell — The Ireland growth miracle is largely illusory and biasing Eurozone growth data upwards

I have been avoiding keeping up-to-date with the Irish national accounts over the last several years for reasons that I documented in this blog post – Ireland – not as rosy as the official story might suggest (January 2, 2018). Ireland has been held out as the poster nation for the Eurozone boosters because of its seemingly ‘impressive’ growth performance after entry into the common currency and its resilience after the Global Financial Crisis. During the GFC, I wrote a series of blog posts (see below) that delved into reality of the Irish situation and we learned that the so-called ‘Celtic Tiger’ growth miracle was an illusion and was driven by major US corporations evading US tax liabilities by exploiting massive tax breaks supplied to them by the Irish government. Since then the ‘smoke and mirrors’ have become even more obvious as the Irish national accounts recorded massive increases in business investment all due to fudges in the way several large corporations recorded their tax affairs. I decided recently to see where this was at given the European Commission is still claiming that growth. What I found was that the distortions in the Irish data are influencing the outcomes reported for the European Union as a whole and things are definitely not as robust as the official figures demonstrate....
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
The Ireland growth miracle is largely illusory and biasing Eurozone growth data upwards
Bill Mitchell |rofessor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia P

Huawei Chips Demonstrate The Perils Of Technology Protectionism — Moon of Alabama

Sullivan's whole speech is an argument against free markets and for protectionism and sector subsidies. It does away with the economic framework the U.S. had build after the end of the second world war. This is supposed to be replaced it with bilateral and block wise agreements that are to the advantage of the U.S., to the disadvantage of its agreement 'partners' and which exclude China and other 'hostile' economies....
How the worm turns. End of an era.

Moon of Alabama
Huawei Chips Demonstrate The Perils Of Technology Protectionism 

MMT the Movie: Coming to a Festival Near You — Stephanie Kelton

Documentary on MMT.

The Lens
MMT the Movie: Coming to a Festival Near You
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

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Interviews with video and transcript — Michael Hudson

Interviews with video and transcript.

Michael Hudson — On Finance, Real Estate And The Powers Of Neoliberalism
BRICS Keep Building

High Finance & Investment Colonialism
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

Monday, August 28, 2023

China’s “Lehman moment!” ?

 

Only if the BOC reacts by making the same reification error as the Fed did and adds bazillions of reserve balances “to lend out!”….






Friday, August 25, 2023

Reactions to Fed Chair Powell's Speech — Stephanie Kelton

Curiously to me, Stephanie does not mention the role of raising the interest rates as potentially contributing to inflation when Mike, Warren, and Bill have been doing so for some time.

The Lens
Reactions to Fed Chair Powell's Speech
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

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Stop Trying To Make BRICS Happen — Brian Romanchuk

BRICS was a brilliant bit of sell side marketing, but it has taken a life of its own. One needs to stop projecting fantasies onto the global financial system, and accept that its form follows function.
The extreme dominance of the share of global GDP after World War II by the United States was a historical accident, and so the relative rise of other economic powers was inevitable. Meanwhile, the eagerness of the United States to use sanctions as a foreign policy tool is going to create incentives to develop mechanisms to do an end run around those sanctions. Nevertheless, the geopolitical system is far more stable than is commonly described. (I will enter a geopolitical tangent later in this article to justify that claim.)

Since I have ranted about this repeatedly, I am just going to do a “greatest hits” refresh of my economic arguments.
Bond Economics

William Mitchell — New feudalism seems to forget about the capitalists

Bill on feudalism and capitalism. 

Capitalism and feudalism are essentially different in that land is the dominant factor in feudalism and land rent is the chief means of expropriation. Under capitalism, capital and expropriation of surplus value through industrial (technological) production along with financial rents are the dominant factors, although land and land rent are also still key in generating passive income resulting from ownership (title). That is to say, capitalism and feudalism are based on different institutional arrangements but capitalism has incorporated and modified some of the institutional arrangements of feudalism.

The question that Bill raises is about whether it is valid to view capitalism as a sort of "neofeudalism." He introduces some important issues.

William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
New feudalism seems to forget about the capitalists
Bill Mitchell |rofessor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia P

System reserves

 

Total System reserves took a nice 50b drop last week but it does no good if Tsy runs TGA down by almost 200b at same time.. TGA account balance supposed to be $650b…. TGA reduction increases bank deposits while banks capital still under pressure from the Fed rate increasing psychos…




TGA:


TGA topped at around 550b coming up out of debt ceiling and rolled over taking financial asset prices with it since late July…  I think TGA should be back up to mid 400s as of yesterday’s Treasury operations…  

These morons who can’t apply 8th grade Algebra caused another mini March “bank crisis!” here (Citi shares back to March lows) but hopefully it’s over this week if TGA bottomed and being adjusted back up over 550b…





Tuesday, August 22, 2023

We Did Not Evolve to Be Selfish—and Humans Are Increasingly Aware We Can Choose How Our Cultures Can Evolve — April M. Short

The good news is that humans evolved often as cooperative and “prosocial” beings, so looking to the past and better understanding our cultural evolution as a species might help illuminate the best ways forward across the board. This is the basis of a paper published in April 2023 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) titled, “Multilevel Cultural Evolution: From New Theory to Practical Applications.” Rather than focusing on the genetic code and physical evolution of humans, the paper explores the advanced and groundbreaking—but seldom discussed—field of cultural evolution.

The paper’s senior author David Sloan Wilson, a distinguished professor emeritus of biological sciences at Binghamton University, New York, and the founder of the school’s Evolutionary Studies (EvoS) program, told the Independent Media Institute in May 2023 that the authors of the article wrote it “to show that a synthesis, which has already taken place for the study of biological evolution, is now in progress for the study of human cultural evolution, with wide-ranging practical applications.”

One problem is that humans are prosocial in their in-groups, originally based on kinship, but competitive with out-groups, e.g., other tribes and nations in the original sense of kinship.  Now that social, political, and economic issues have become more systemic as globalization unfolds, it is vital to extend prosociality throughout the system as a whole.

Prezensa
We Did Not Evolve to Be Selfish—and Humans Are Increasingly Aware We Can Choose How Our Cultures Can Evolve
April M. Short

1.2% of adults have 47.8% of the world’s wealth while 53.2% have just 1.1% — Michael Roberts

Every year, I bring to the attention of readers of my blog, the results of the latest Credit Suisse Wealth Report. It is produced by economists Anthony Shorrocks (with whom I graduated at university), James Davies and Rodrigo Lluberas. It is the most comprehensive study of global personal wealth and inequality between adults around the world.
"Wealth" implies ownership. This is the size of the ownership class globally.

Michael Roberts Blog — blogging from a marxist economist
1.2% of adults have 47.8% of the world’s wealth while 53.2% have just 1.1%
Michael Roberts

Look Out: Ukraine Will Cost More than Half a Trillion More if the War Ends Tomorrow— Stephen Bryen

"Military Keynesianism." (article by Jan Taporowski, Professor of Economics and Finance, SOAS
Visiting Professor of Economics, University of Bergamo, and Professor of Economics and Finance, International University College)

Weapons and Strategy
Look Out: Ukraine Will Cost More than Half a Trillion More if the War Ends Tomorrow—Will US Voters Support More Huge Outlays?
Stephen Bryen

Also
Barbara Ehrenreich was a remarkable writer and thinker. Her book, Blood Rites: Origins and History of the Passions of War (1997), is one of the most original and thoughtful studies of war and its nature. She traced humanity’s affinity to war, our predilection for it, not to our vaunted status as predators but to our vulnerable status as prey to other predators in the wild. Our early human ancestors were fearful creatures, and for good reason. Humans learned to band together as a way of conquering other predators and controlling their fear; once those predators were mostly banished to fleeting memories and occasional nightmares, we could turn on each other, becoming predators (and prey) to ourselves.

If you haven’t read her book, I urge you to check it out. Stimulating it is. And so too is an afterword she wrote to the paperback edition of the book, available at TomDispatch and which I read last night. Once again, Ehrenreich doesn’t disappoint....

Robert Ardrey's The Territorial Imperative is also relevant here. Can humans rise above their evolutionary traits? David Sloan Wilson,  SUNY Distinguished Professor of Biology and Anthropology (Emeritus) at Binghamton University, argues, yes, in his work on prosociality as an evolutionary trait, agreeing with Aristotle that humans are a prosocial species as a matter of their evolutionary development. 

Prosociality is a requirement for civilization, for instance. Ironically, conflict is now becoming civilizational consciously as Western liberalism attempts to impose its civilization on other civilizations. This is one underlying factor in the development of BRICS+.

Bracing Views
W. J. Astore, Lieutenant Colonel (USAF ret.), taught at the Air Force Academy, the Naval Postgraduate School, and currently at the Pennsylvania College of Technology

Monday, August 21, 2023

William Mitchell — The growing incidence of financial insecurity and inequality

I am in the final stages of moving office and it has been a time consuming process. And one of my regular research colleague, Professor Scott Baum from Griffith University, who occassionally provides blog posts here, sent me some research which he had written up in blog post form and with time short today, here is Scott’s latest guest spot. Today he is going to talk about a new analysis of financial insecurity that we are currently doing.
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
The growing incidence of financial insecurity and inequality
Guest Post

Lavrov Explained How Russia Envisages BRICS’ Global Role — Andrew Korybko

This is Russia’s most direct debunking of the Alt-Media Community’s false perceptions about BRICS thus far. Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov published an article in South Africa’s Ubuntu Magazine on the eve of the 15th BRICS Summit that’ll be hosted in that country. Titled “BRICS: Towards a Just World Order”, he explained how Russia envisages its global role and built upon the efforts earlier this month by Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov to clarify false perceptions of BRICS. This includes the Alt-Media Community’s (AMC) most popular one imagining that it’s driven by de-dollarization and is resolutely anti-Western.

Lavrov began by describing the global systemic transition to multipolarity, particularly its economic-financial dimensions, so as to set the context within which this week’s BRICS Summit is taking place. Of pertinence, he mentioned that “not only Russia, but also a number of other countries are consistently reducing their dependence on the US dollar, switching to alternative payment systems and national currency settlements.”

The abovementioned trend isn’t de-dollarization like the AMC understands it to be in the sense of advancing a political decision aimed at phasing out the use of that currency in totality. Rather, it can more accurately be described as diversification from the dollar in order to hedge against forex and other risks posed by dependence on it. While they might appear identical to the average member of the AMC since both goals decrease the dollar’s share in the economy, their motivations are entirely different....
Andrew Korybko's Newsletter 
Andrew Korybko

See also

India Punchline
India doesn’t want BRICS to dismantle the world order built by the West
M. K. Bhadrakumar | retired diplomat with the Indian Foreign Service and former ambassador

Sunday, August 20, 2023

Geopolitics 101 — Unprecedented Uproar: How One Ballad is Igniting a New Revolution Against the Elite

The protest song comes back. Will it spark a new protest movement and new trend, or is this just a voice crying in the wilderness? Anyway, it seems to have social-political-economic implications worth calling attention to.

Low-wage worker-author-performer with mental health issues rejects $8 million offer from the industry after his song goes viral.


Incidentally, here is the patriotic song igniting Russia now. It is not only a patriotic song but also a song of defiance in the face of the attempt of the combined West to "cancel" Russia and its civilization.


Shaman "I am Russian" (Я РУССКИЙ) with English Lyrics (3:34)

Saturday, August 19, 2023

(Re)consider Hong Kong — Godree Roberts

Hong Kong as global financial center for those wishing to avoid Western dominance.

Here Comes China
(Re)consider Hong Kong
Godree Roberts

Central Asia is the prime battlefield in the New Great Game — Pepe Escobar

More intersection of geopolitics (control of territory) and geoeconomics (resource). Russia and Central Asia, along with Africa, which is now also in play with many US and allied bases there, on to mention Latin America, which is already ringfenced by the Monroe Doctrine, are where much of the world's natural resources are located. 

These areas are now part of the battleground for control in the new Great Game based on unipolarism (continued domination of the globe by the West under the US-led "rules-based order") versus multipolarism (national sovereignty and the rule of international law, led by Russia and China). Simply put, multipolarism guarantees all countries the right to develop independently as they see fit for themselves and their circumstances, including traditions, while unipolarism requires development in accordance with the rules of the hegemon, including liberalism and Western values. 

The Cradle
Central Asia is the prime battlefield in the New Great Game
Pepe Escobar  

See also from Telegram

The "anaconda strategy" is designed to secure the natural resources of the region by the Western powers.

Slavyangrad


You know what this is? This is the anaconda strategy.
control and strangulation of the coastal zones of littoral countries in Africa and Asia, including India and China, emphasizing the role of force in establishing political order. By the end of World War II, it became obvious to identify the "Heartland" with the Soviet Union. The defeat of Germany enhanced the reputation of Mackinder's geopolitical concept.

Therefore, in Spykman's new model of world order, a mainland power from the "hartland" (the USSR) confronts a maritime power from the "outer crescent" (the United States), separated by a zone of contact ("rimland"). In accordance with this model, the postwar policy of containment of communism was formed in the United States. The U.S. containment of the "fortress" (the Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact countries) was realized by the formation of anti-Soviet military blocs along the "rimland": NATO in Europe, CENTO in West Asia, and SEATO in East Asia. The confrontation was alternated by big and small conflicts in Berlin, Korea, Middle East, Vietnam, Cambodia and Afghanistan.
PS...As it is not difficult to understand on the basis of this geopolitical theory the relations between countries have been formed since 1904 when Alford Mackinder put forward it for the first time.

Heartland [Mackinder] versus Rimland [Spykman].
"He who controls Rimland controls Eurasia [Heartland], and he who controls Eurasia controls the destinies of the whole world"

Friday, August 18, 2023

De-Gamify The Earth — Caitlin Johnstone

Basically the problem is that our whole planet has been gamified. All the Earth’s life, resources and geography have been folded into this sick game where people commodify them into points called money, for no other reason than to score as many points as possible.

Read in conjunction with the MMT analogy of money as points on scoreboard in a game.

CaitlinJohnstone.com
De-Gamify The Earth
Caitlin Johnstone

Structural Deficits Are Deflationary — NeilW

Neil shows how it is necessary to understand accounting along with institutional arrangements and their effects.

New Wayland
Structural Deficits Are Deflationary
NeilW

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Towards a Libertarian/Austrian Modern Money Theory — L. Randall Wray

Achieving price stability through MMT but without going back to the gold standard.

Real Progressives (
Towards a Libertarian/Austrian Modern Money Theory 
L. Randall Wray | Professor of Economics, Bard College
Originally posted on July 27, 2010 at the New Economic Perspectives blog

Argentina adopting US dollar to fight inflation would be ‘insane’ neocolonialism, says economist Ha-Joon Chang — Ben Norton

Right-wing politicians in Argentina want to adopt the US dollar as the national currency to fight inflation. Development economist Ha-Joon Chang said this is “insane”, warning dollarization would make the Latin American nation a “colony”.

Recognition is dawning that it won't be easy for the Global South/East to break out of the neoliberal, neo-imperial, and neocolonial model. 

Geopolitical Economy
Argentina adopting US dollar to fight inflation would be ‘insane’ neocolonialism, says economist Ha-Joon Chang
Ben Norton

See also

Andrew Korybko's Newsletter

Also
China may continue to reduce its holdings of United States debt, in a move to diversify its foreign reserve assets and ensure foreign exchange market stability amid the rising de-dollarization trend in international trade, experts said on Wednesday.
ECNS (Chinese official English news service)
China likely to cut more U.S. debt holdings
China Daily (Chinese state-sponsored media)%

Also

Further on the geopolitical front, Simclicius recently posted two articles on the Russian economy. The first is about the Central Bank of Russia, which just raised the interest rate from 8.5% to 12% to address the weak rouble. The second is a military sitrep but the last half of the post is on the Russian economy, including the degree of exposure to external debt denominated in foreign currency. Both posts contain useful information; however, Simplicius is neither an economist nor trained in MMT so one needs to read between the lines with that in mind. 


Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Book Review — How Universal Basic Income Became the Pessimist’s Utopia — Jason Resnikoff

In Welfare for Markets, Anton Jäger and Daniel Zamora show that cash transfers emerged as an alternative to the welfare state favored by a left that had abandoned hope in socialism and a right hostile to democratic management of the economy.

What exactly do David Graeber, Milton Friedman, Charles Murray, Yannis Varoufakis, and Mark Zuckerberg have in common?” It sounds like the setup to a bad joke. The punch line may not be funny exactly, but it is revealing. Although they share practically nothing when it comes to their political commitments, they have all supported the establishment of a Universal Basic Income (UBI) — cash transfers, or a state-provided wage regardless of employment status. In other words, free money.

In Welfare for Markets: A Global History of Basic Income, Anton Jäger and Daniel Zamora seek to explain how such an ideologically diverse crew could come to share this particular vision of the welfare state. Providing an intellectual history of the origins and ascendence of the idea of a universal basic income — which in recent years has become a major plank in progressive reform platforms — they show that its broad appeal is evidence of a tectonic shift in the ways thinkers both left and right have come to understand both the welfare state and the market.…

MMT argues for the MMT JG instead of UBI.

Jacobin
How Universal Basic Income Became the Pessimist’s Utopia
Review of Welfare for Markets: A Global History of Basic Income by Anton Jäger and Daniel Zamora (University of Chicago Press, 2023).
Jason Resnikoff


Tuesday, August 15, 2023

The world’s infrastructure was built for a climate no longer existing Bill Haskell

Excerpt from Foreign Policy.
Countries have spent decades building critical infrastructure that is now buckling under extreme heat, wildfires, and floods, laying bare just how unprepared the world’s energy and transportation systems are to withstand the volatility of climate change.

These vulnerabilities have been on full display in recent weeks as record-breaking temperatures broil the world, straining power grids, threatening water supplies, and warping roads.

Mother Nature is a bitch. Who thought? (What happens when you piss off Ma.)

Monday, August 14, 2023

China announces further steps to unleash rural consumption — Global Times

A further step in developing dual circulation, that is, a balance of exports and domestic consumption.

ECNS (Chinese official English news service)
China announces further steps to unleash rural consumption
Global Times (Chinese state-sponsored media)

Why slave-owners never willingly emancipated their slaves? — Branko Milanovic

Mostly a consideration of Adam Smith's position on slavery.

Global Inequality
Why slave-owners never willingly emancipated their slaves?
Branko Milanovic | Visiting Presidential Professor at City University of New York Graduate Center and senior scholar at the Stone Center on Socio-economic Inequality, senior scholar at the Luxembourg Income Study (LIS), and formerly lead economist in the World Bank's research department and senior associate at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

MMT Verify: is there pressure on the Russian Economy? — NeilW

Only Western reporters can answer how an increase in revenue is a ‘decline’ or a ‘weakening’, especially when export volumes are steady.

Seriously, do the maths.
New Wayland

US inflation in retreat as housing policy is exposed as a failure — Bill Mitchell

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics released the latest US inflation data last week (August 10, 2023) – Consumer Price Index Summary – which showed that overall monthly inflation to be 0.2 per cent and mostly driven by housing. And, once we understand how the housing component is calculated then there is every reason to believe that this major driver of the current inflation rate will weaken considerably in the coming months. The rent component in the CPI has been a strong influence on the overall inflation rate and that has been pushed up by the Federal Reserve rate hikes....
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
US inflation in retreat as housing policy is exposed as a failure
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Sunday, August 13, 2023

China becomes world's No.1 maritime fleet owner due to 'strong manufacturing, resilient trade and financial support' — Global Times

China has overtaken Greece as the world's largest maritime fleet owner in terms of gross tonnage (GT), global shipping information provider Clarksons Research said on Saturday.

Greece held that position for a decade, but China's position as the world's manufacturing hub, its resilient cargo trade and strong financial support for the shipping sector propelled it to the head of the industry, analysts said.

The latest rankings from Clarksons Research showed that the Chinese-owned fleet stands at 249.2 million GT. Greece was second with 249 million GT and Japan third with 181 million GT.

Experts said that these rankings aligned with expectations, given China's continued status as a major production center and other positive factors.…

Global Times (Chinese state-sponsored media)
China becomes world's No.1 maritime fleet owner due to 'strong manufacturing, resilient trade and financial support'



Senior statistician [Xu Xianchun] explains China's GDP accounting — Jia Yuxuan and Zichen Wang

Xu Xianchun talks about the improvement and limitations of Chinese government statistics and how to read them.
There is no shortage of suspicions and questions directed toward China’s official statistics and the government organ behind it - the National Bureau of Statistics. Recently, Xu Xianchun, currently a Research Fellow at the National School of Development at Peking University and formerly a senior statistician published the book 透视中国政府统计数据:理解与应用 A Probe into China’s Official Statistics: Comprehension and Utilization. Between Peking University and his government experience, Xu was a Professor at the Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Tsinghua University.
The following is an interview of Xu with the Economic Observer newspaper, in which Xu illustrated how government statistics become prone to skepticism. His main ideas are summarized into chapter titles for better understanding....
The East Is Read
Senior statistician explains China's GDP accounting
Jia Yuxuan and Zichen Wang

Benefits for capitalists — Chris Dillow

 Misses the JG as a key (arguably the key) automatic stabilizer. 

There seems to be a lack of ability to fully grasp the nature of the contemporary economic/financial system. So the analysis remains partial; therefore, solutions are inadequate. What Dillow does importantly notice is that the system is to some degree irrational.

Stumbling and Mumbling
Benefits for capitalists
Chris Dillow | Investors Chronicle

Saturday, August 12, 2023

China, the fascinating flight of the Dragon — Outras Palavras

 Longish and unabashedly pro-China, but informative. What stands out is the role of public investment.

Pressenza
China, the fascinating flight of the Dragon
Outras Palavras

Pressenza is an international news agency dedicated to news about peace and nonviolence with offices in Athens, Barcelona, Berlin, Bordeaux, Brussels, Budapest, Buenos Aires, Florence, Lima, London, Madrid, Manila, Mar del Plata, Milan, Montreal, Munich, New York, Palermo, Paris, Porto, Quito, Rome, Santiago, Sao Paulo, Turin, Valencia and Vienna.

Michael Hudson: Debt, Sponsors of the wars, Future of USD and BRICS Anya K interviews — Michael Hudson

Video and transcript.

Global South
Michael Hudson: Debt, Sponsors of the wars, Future of USD and BRICS
Anya K interviews Michael Hudson

Bank Crisis

 

This overly simplistic analysis misses the mark there is more to it than this Accounting:




The MMT people say this here which implies a Depository will always have the reserve balances to settle a withdrawal..  (btw while at the same time saying “reserves don’t matter” so which is it?). (btw They also say “loans create deposits” while implying here that a deposit liability creates a reserve asset, so again which is it?)

The Fed reduced its own RRR from a former ≈10% of deposit liabilities (btw a policy MMT people criticized) to the current 0% back in 2020 so now what is supposed to happen if the Depository doesn’t have the reserve balances to settle large depositor withdrawals?  

As happened back in March, Depositories have to sell other forms of regulatory required govt issued financial assets now at severe losses…  due to same incompetent Fed psycho’s unprecedented risk free rate increases to reduce their figure of speech “inflation!” … which can lead to a total loss of  the Depository’s equity… and the Depository has to be closed with uninsured deposits at risk of total loss for the unsuspecting innocent depositors…

So there’s a lot more to it..

Friday, August 11, 2023

Chinese electric car giant declares war on Western rivals — Howard Mustoe

China replicating Japan's rise? After WWII Japanese goods were infamous for being cheaply (poorly) mad. How that changed over the years. Is Chinese tech and manufacturing set to replicate that cycle? It won't happen overnight, but neither did Japan's rise. At least the challenge has been thrown down, and those who benefit most from competition are consumers.

Yahoo Finance
Chinese electric car giant declares war on Western rivals
Howard Mustoe

What can we learn from John Rawls’s critique of capitalism? | Aeon Essays — Colin Bradley

Marx called the liberalism of the US and UK "bourgeois liberalism," that is, the freedom of capital (the ownership class). to exploit labor (workers) and land (the environment). 

The attempt John Rawls made to answer Marx from the vantage of Anglo-American liberalism was not successful. Liberalism as freedom and equality of persons is inherently incompatible with capitalism as private ownership and control of the means of production. Neither is it compatible with distribution through markets that are determined institutionally (legally) by the ownership class.

While the article does not overcome the problem that Rawls proposes, like Marx before him, it does articulate the position of Rawls on this issue, which is now coming to a head socially, politically, and economically in the world owing to neoliberal globalization, and particularly in the US and UK as bulwarks of Anglo-American liberalism.

Aeon
What can we learn from John Rawls’s critique of capitalism? | Aeon Essays
Colin Bradley

See also

Zero Hedge
Jonah Goldberg Tells CNN: Small Donors 'One Of The Biggest Problems For Democracy'
Tyler Durden

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Inflation Or Nominal GDP Targeting? Whatever. — Brian Romanchuk

Nominal GDP targeting is the latest mainstream fad, which is allegedly going to improve central banking when compared to inflation targeting. In a certain sense, I have some sympathies. If a central bank could stabilise nominal GDP growth, it has abolished the business cycle. I am in favour of abolishing the business cycle. Doing so would not solve all economic woes, but it would be the most that can be hoped for from macroeconomic stabilisation policy. Unfortunately, there is no reason to believe that the central bank can wave a magical expectations wand and abolish the business cycle — despite the claims of some Market Monetarists....
Bond Economics
Inflation Or Nominal GDP Targeting? Whatever.
Brian Romanchuk

The conflicting role played by education in social mobility and class reinforcement — Bill Mitchell

Sometimes everything comes together in unintended ways. That has happened to me this week. I am moving office tomorrow, and I am also moving home, and if that wasn’t enough, I received a call from a union I help out with advice who wanted some urgent work done. The major employer had presented a sort of ‘take-it-or-leave-it’ offer that if accepted would see the workers more than 8 per cent worse off in real terms at the end of the 4-year agreement than they were when they last had their pay adjusted. This sort of offer – at a time the RBA is claiming the labour market is incredibly tight just beggars belief. Anyway, the point is that I have very little time this week for blog posting. Some years ago I read a research report that demonstrated that standard economics programs at our universities breed people with sociopathological tendencies who elevate greed above empathy. There is clearly some self-selection bias because the studies have never really isolated the impacts of the teaching programs from the tendencies of the students going into the programs. But as one who has been through the mill from go to woah (PhD) the standard mainstream curriculum is pretty grim and most students in my years just went along with it. I was thinking about this when I read a Discussion Paper (No. 1938, July 2023) from the Centre for Economic Performance at LSE entitled – Are the upwardly mobile more left-wing?. After I had read that paper, I noticed a UK Guardian article (August 6, 2023) which carried the headline – Are richer people really more rightwing? – which discussed the LSE research and I thought that was a curious perversion of the original title.
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
The conflicting role played by education in social mobility and class reinforcement
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia 

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Cash on hand

 

These slugs now getting 5.5% free munnie on $576B from the Biden Fed… $32B annual for doing nothing…  probably a lot tax free in foreign accounts…. 🤑

And the Art degree Monetarist morons think this is somehow bearish?  🤔





Monday, August 7, 2023

US labor market – ‘steady as she goes’ — Bill Mitchell

Last Friday (August 4, 2023), the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released their latest labour market data – Employment Situation Summary – July 2023 – indicated a rather ‘steady as she goes’ outcome. A slightly weaker employment outlook compared to the beginning of 2023 but overall a very stable situation. There is no sign of recession and no sign that the misguided Federal Reserve interest rate rises are causing rises in unemployment. More evidence that monetary policy is not an effective tool.

For those who are confused about the difference between the payroll (establishment) data and the household survey data you should read this blog post – US labour market is in a deplorable state – where I explain the differences in detail.

Some months the difference is small, while other months, the difference is larger....

William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
US labor market – ‘steady as she goes’
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Towards a Demilitarized Global Currency — Radhika Desai, Michael Hudson, and Pepe Escobar

RADHIKA DESAI: Hello everyone and welcome to the [15th] Geopolitical Economy Hour, a program that discusses the political and geopolitical economy of our time. I’m Radhika Desai.


MICHAEL HUDSON: And I’m Michael Hudson.


RADHIKA DESAI: And today we have once again Pepe Escobar, roving reporter extraordinaire. Welcome, Pepe.


PEPE ESCOBAR: Thank you. It’s an enormous pleasure to be with you guys again.


RADHIKA DESAI: And today we are going to continue the discussion we started in the last Geopolitical Economy Hour, entitled NATO Out of Bounds, War Against Russia, War Against China.…

Video and transcript.

Michael Hudson — On Finance, Real Estate And The Powers Of Neoliberalism
Towards a Demilitarized Global Currency
Radhika Desai, Michael Hudson, and Pepe Escobar

Early intimations of international gold standard in Indus Script Corpora — Srini Kalyanaraman

Interesting paper on gold and its use in trade early in history.

Academia
Early intimations of international gold standard in Indus Script Corpora
Srini Kalyanaraman, Researcher of Sarasvati Civilization


Saturday, August 5, 2023

Week in Review: Four Fabulous and Not-So-Fabulous F-Words — Stephanie Kelton

Fiscal, Frying Pan, Fed, and Fitch.

The Lens
Week in Review: Four Fabulous and Not-So-Fabulous F-Words
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

Cutting Borrowing Costs Made Simple: End Interest Payments — NeilW

UK specific but the MMT principles involved hold for the general case.

New Wayland
Cutting Borrowing Costs Made Simple: End Interest Payments
NeilW

Friday, August 4, 2023

Kremlin pours cold water on BRICS single currency speculation — RT

Russia confirms Brazil's preference for using national currencies instead of USD rather than launching a new currency with all the complications and uncertainties that such a project involves. It's over for now.

RT — Question More (Russian state-sponsored media)
Kremlin pours cold water on BRICS single currency speculation

Should We Downgrade Fitch Or The USA? - Forbes — John T. Harvey

Quotes MMT economists including Mike Norman. Short and on point.

Forbes
Should We Downgrade Fitch Or The USA? - Forbes
John T. Harvey | Professor of Economics, Texas Christian University

Thursday, August 3, 2023

Ratings downgrade on US government debt is as ridiculous as it is meaningless — Bill Mitchell

It’s Wednesday and there are a few topics that warrant some comment. But at the top of the topics were headlines this morning shouting out that the US treasury bonds had been downgraded by one of those self-serving credit rating agencies, as if it was an event worthy of some import. The journalists obviously do not understand anything if they think that decision was important. The ratings downgrade on US government debt is meaningless and the rating agency involved just wants to boost its revenue by sounding important. After I explain all that we will have a quiet musical reflection to finish the day....
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
Ratings downgrade on US government debt is as ridiculous as it is meaningless
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Job Guarantee as Historical Struggle with David Stein (NEW TRANSCRIPT!) — Maxximilian Seijo, Scott Ferguson, William Saas

Old podcast from Money on the Left and a new transcript.

MR Online
Job Guarantee as Historical Struggle with David Stein (NEW TRANSCRIPT!)
Maxximilian Seijo, Scott Ferguson, William Saas

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

US credit rating downgraded by Fitch.

US credit rating downgrade

 

lol Biden’s consigliere didn’t see this one coming… 



GOP is going to be all over this Biden downgrade… 😂😂😂

Biden Treasury is having to increase the Biden UST issuance by $1T in order to pay the additional $1T Biden interest on the USTs due to the Biden rate increases due to the Biden inflation … 😂😂😂



This is the hyperinflationistas dream scenario they have been predicting for decades… having to issue Treasuries in order to pay the interest on the Treasuries..

This is textbook Art degree moron hyperinflationista 101…. These zombies are probably all foaming at the mouth…

I wouldn’t think this development (the embarrassing credit downgrade) would tend to politically motivate the Biden people towards more rate increases.. perhaps the opposite…

Fitch is based in UK and US probably thinks the US rates are too high compared to the UK hence the downgrade of the US … UK rates would have to be well over 10% to be comparable to current US 5.5% rate… with UK CPI at 8% and US CPI at 3%…

Downgrade came soon after US Fed psycho’s latest rate increase in the face of continued reduction in US CPI…

Fitch probably justified in its decision… if the Art degree Fed psychos keep going like they have been the fiscal interest income will get so large it will most likely destabilize US prices towards rapid increase eventually…

Probably Fitch’s way of telling the US Fed psychos “enough already!”…



Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Inflation Targeting In Practice — Brian Romanchuk

I have been running into the ongoing debates on nominal GDP targeting, and whether it is superior to inflation targeting. To look at this debate, I need to put my “conventional economist” hat on, as if one accepts the heterodox view that interest rate policy is ineffective, the entire debate is pointless (neither policy “works”). As will become apparent, I think the neoclassical models behind the debate are dubious. But if we accept that interest rates at least sort-of work the way that they are conventionally assumed to (e.g., rate hikes dampen growth and inflation), we can have a view on how a change in targets would work in practice.

That said, I am going to ignore nominal GDP targeting in this article, and push that to a later article. (I am still editing my manuscript, so my article writing time is constrained.) So I will just be making some wild assertions about the behaviour of inflation targeting central banks without getting to why I brought it up. However, I think that this is a useful exercise for anyone who is concerned about central bank reaction functions. (If you are trading government bonds, even if interest rate policy does not work the way the neoclassicals believe, you still need to project what central bankers will do.)
Bond Economics
Inflation Targeting In Practice
Brian Romanchuk

Monday, July 31, 2023

Explaining China’s & India’s Reported Differences Over Expanding BRICS — Andrew Korybko

 Follow on to Korybko's previous article about BRICS+ and alternative currency/payments system. Again, cutting through the hype of both an impasse owing to Chinese and Indian opposition and also the over-optimism of the cheerleaders for an alternative currency. Korybko argues that the countries involved are proceeding carefully in finding common ground in spite of competing national interests — that is, acting maturely.

Naked Capitalism
Explaining China’s & India’s Reported Differences Over Expanding BRICS
Andrew Korybko

See also

Backgrounder.

Bill Totten's Weblog
The West never bothered to understand China …

Sunday, July 30, 2023

William Mitchell — Central bankers deliberately trying to increase poverty is not a sound policy framework

What we will discuss today is that central bankers are effectively intent on increasing poverty in their societies. And, whichever way one looks at it, relying on such a pernicious policy tool – one that deliberately seeks to increase poverty – is not a sound basis for achieving social stability. And, and as inflation has been falling anyway, despite the hikes, the negative distributional impacts should militate against using such a nasty and inefficient instrument....
William Mitchell — Modern Monetary Theory
Central bankers deliberately trying to increase poverty is not a sound policy framework
Bill Mitchell |rofessor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia P

First We Go for Moscow, Then We Take Beijing — Pepe Escobar

This is a follow-up piece that includes Africa. It also has more on BRICS+ as well as ongoing work on developing an alternative payments system. The title is misleading in that it is representative of the actual subject of the post. The US and West don't figure in much in what he has to say other than being oppositional to these projects.

Strategic Culture Foundation (sanctioned by the US Treasury Department)

GDPNow

 

Initial number for US 3Q +3.5% not too shabby…





Saturday, July 29, 2023

Pepe Escobar — Geopolitical Chessboard Shifts Against US Empire

This is a longish and fairly detailed summary of recent developments in the geopolitical and geoeconomic spheres and their self-augmenting interaction and integration on the way to actualizing the vision of multipolarity based on international law rather than a US-led (imposed) "rules-based-order), that is to say, unipolarity.

This is also a more balanced account than some of Pepe Escobar's posts that suffer from confirmation bias. This is more critical than "creative," that is, hyped. It doesn't mention anything new that has yet to appear in the alternative news on social media, but it brings it all together into a coherent picture of the present state of affairs in the global dynamic.

This view is based on a particular viewpoint that favors multpolarism and decolonization, which have been to the forefront in recent developments. The Russian leadership is now talking about this specifically as the defining moment in the historical dialectic pitting the Global North against the Global South in the West's effort to maintain and extend the Western hegemony that has dominated global history over the past several hundred years. While this post remains one-sided, it is a good summary of this perspective.

Often the US, UD, Europe, and West in general are depicted as declining. There are reasons that favor this view, but it can also be argued that it is not so much a matter of the Global North declining as it is the Global South and East rising owing to the proliferation of knowledge and technology. While involves a clash among competing interests between the blocs, neither the Global North/West nor the Global South/East are homogenous in this regard. Nor are their components of equal power. 

The defining factor, however, is that the US is no longer the sole superpower. Russia has regained that distinction and China has arguably arrived at it. The US as leader of the West is trying to contain them and if possible colonize them, or at least vassalize them. They are determined to resist this. The Great Game continues to unfold. Pepe Escobar's posts are useful in getting a handle on this.

Sputnik International (Russian state-sponsored media)
Pepe Escobar: Geopolitical Chessboard Shifts Against US Empire

See also

Michael Hudson — On Finance, Real Estate And The Powers Of Neoliberalism
NATO Moves to Bait China
Michael Hudson, Radhika Desai, and Pepe Escobar

Related

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More Art degree hijinks

 

Here from some sad eternally ineffectual UK MMT people with the “musical chairs!” and “takes chairs away!” figurative language:



And here from some monetarist people with their figurative language “taking away the punch bowl!” (What is it with these Art degree people’s continuous use of party activities in figurative form?🤔)




Both unqualified sorry to say… neither ever getting anywhere…