Tom Hickey Says:
January 21st, 2010 at 2:29 pm
Same thing happened to me, although I was a progressive (radical, actually) and knew that something was wrong with neoliberalism from Chomsky’s Politics and Neoliberalism andHegemony and Survival. But I hadn’t seen through the veil and was still under the spell of the Wizard and the gold brick road. (Did you know that The Wizard of Oz was an allegory against the gold standard?)
I happened to read a comment by Ramanan on a blog, although I no longer remember which one. It sounded a bit far-fetched but he provided references and I checked them out. This led to my reading Randy Wray’s Understand Modern Money, and the scales fell from my eyes. I realized that I had just discovered the holy grail of economics! Then everything began to fall into place. Reading the blogs of Warren, Bill Mitchell, Randy, Scott Fulwiler, Winterspeak, Marhall, etc., and going through the comments carefully, especially those of JKH, I began to get how everything fits together with MMT as the foundation. Eureka. Thank you all.
America, wake up before it is too late.
January 21st, 2010 at 4:42 pm
It’s true that’s it’s a paradigm shift that changes everything, because there is so much of what we hear from political parties (including up here in Canada) and on the media that is just whacky once these pieces start to fall together. I’m like Tom above, very progressive and i’m the guy that before would have said tax business and that cutting the GST (again in Canada) is stupid because it will be harder to get to a surplus situation…etc etc..and one year later I have had to abandon so many ideas I believed. But it’s very liberating. I make many more comments now in online print media and have many more discussions about economics and try to point people to this site. I think there are many phases of outreach about this that need to occur to the general public, but certainly one that comes to mind is economic textbooks need to be challenged. I happen to have my old 1993 intro economics textbook open. Central banks borrow for deficits. Central banks control inflation by changing the money supply. Velocity of circulation theory. Tax as a source of revenue for federal govt. it’s all here and now all seemingly wrong.
I myself come at it from the other angle – I’m mainly a conservative, at least when it comes to social policy (As far as I’m concerned, everything started going wrong with the western world in the 50s – the 1450s)
But as someone who would prefer a minimal government, I’ve come to understand that the economy can only work that way if the government gets the macroeconomy right. If you have chronic unemployment, you are going to have demands for all sorts of govt programs, with all the deleterious social impacts they entail. In an an economy with persistent full employment, you don’t need use government to protect workers from the depredations of employers, because the workers have the power to do it themselves. But the only way to get full employment over the long term is for the govt to provide the savings to fill the output gaps that open up.
A “fiscal conservative”, therefore, undermines (without realizing it) the very values he holds dear.
Excellent point. Perhaps if everybody had a job then we could do more with health care problem as well.