…before youj listenh to another politician tell you we cannot afford it
Because of COVID-19 you should have your ass at home! And now is the perfect time to read an excellent book, get smarter, and understand why is it that there are always trillions and trillions of dollars available for never-ending wars, tax cuts for the wealthy, big business bailouts; but why is there never enough money for education, healthcare, infrastructure, cancer research, and climate change?
In her blockbuster, New York Times bestseller, The Deficit Myth, Professor Stephanie Kelton unravels the lies and misconceptions about America’s so-called deficit problems. As you read, you’ll find yourself thinking that it’s kind of like reading revolutionary Scriptures in the Bible, as Kelton peels back layer upon layer of age-old falsehoods about how the federal government and well-known economists have failed to understand and adjust to the new realities of the American economy.
FULL DISCLOSURE: I am not an economist and have never been particularly interested in economic matters, but when I heard about this book on social media it piqued my interest. All my life as a news and politics junkie, I’ve listened to politicians of every stripe talk about the need to reduce the federal deficit. Ok, fine, then what about the spending that is supporting the 18-plus-year war in Afghanistan? Or, for that matter, the recent trillion-dollar tax cut give-a-way to the wealthiest corporations, while people I know work two jobs to make ends meet? The bullshit is endless, and we are being bamboozled by both political parties.
Kelton, professor of economics and public policy at Stoney Brook University, is a former chief economist on the United States Senate Budget Committee, and most-recently served as Senator Bernie Sanders chief economic advisor. In this important work, she dispels six deficit myths that have hobbled the ability of the country to fairly tackle the major issues facing its citizens:
· The government should NOT budget like a business or a household
· Federal deficits are NOT the result of overspending
· Deficits do NOT burden the next generation
· Deficits do NOT discourage private investments
· Deficits do NOT make the U.S. dependent on foreign governments
· Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, etc. do NOT cause deficits
The primary reason that these myths are myths is because of something called the Bretton Woods System, a 1944 agreement between the United States and its WW II allies that established a new monetary system tying all currencies to the U.S. dollar. However, in August of 1971, President Richard Nixon ended the agreement allowing the US and other countries to print their own currencies. Thus, the United States developed a fiat currency, which means it can print its own currency and will never run out of money.
As an ultimate result, some enlightened economists, Dr. Kelton mainly, developed what’s known as the Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), a new, common sense economic system for the good of the country and its citizens. She refers to its principle as a “Copernican moment”, or “once you understand it, you never see things quite the same again”. The theory rests on the notion that the United States is its own sovereign currency producer that funnels money into an economy that meets the needs of the people, and that by doing so creates ‘good’ budget deficits, so long as the inflation rate never reaches two percent of the GNP, which it rarely does.
Dr. Kelton is not a deficit hawk or a deficit dove — -terms the media uses to refer to politicians who either constrain government spending, or push to tax the rich — -she refers to herself as a ‘deficit owl’, a wise bird with a 360 degree view of how to manage the economy for the good of the people. The ‘crisis’ of deficits is political mythology that has mislead the public for decades. Kelton notes in her book:
“…we examine the faulty thinking and provide solid evidence…[noting] the real crises we are facing have nothing to do with the federal deficits or entitlements…[a crisis] is the fact that 21 percent of all children in the United States live in poverty…the fact that our infrastructure is graded a D+…a level of inequality last seen during the Gilded Age…the typical American worker has not seen real wage growth in fifty years…forty-four million Americans are saddled with $1.7 trillion in student loan debt…and the fact that we ultimately won’t be able to ‘afford’ anything at all if we end up exacerbating climate change and destroying life on this planet…that may be the biggest crisis of them all. These are real crises. The national deficit is NOT a crisis.”
Kelton ends her in-depth expose’ asking that readers imagine a new monetary policy agenda that utilizes the country’s abundance of resources on behalf of the American people.
“With the knowledge of how we can pay for it, it now in your hands to imagine and help build the people’s economy,” she said.
I strongly urge you to READ THE BOOK and be enlightened.