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Forum Post: Economic Science

Posted 2 years ago on Jan. 17, 2012, 8:52 p.m. EST by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The problem with economics today and the reason for its failure, resulting in complete economic collapse, is its alienation from actual physical process that are normally studied by the physical sciences.

The divorce of science and economics was done intentionally as a propaganda program intended to convince us that our physical resources, industry/manufacturing, weren't really important to us.

As a result, we were left with an economics that was mostly limited to accounting and analysis of economic data without a deep understanding of their relationship to physical processes.

Leibniz, who also discovered calculus, was the first to really explain economics in relationship to physical sciences through his examination of heat based machines and their capacity to multiply human productivity. But you won't read about him in most economic text books today.

An example of economics applied as a physical science would be Kennedy's space program. Though JFK may not have been an expert in economic science himself, he did have such professionals working for him.

Together, they developed our space program which was among the most challenging physical science projects in our history, and paid off with results of ten dollars in terms of economic growth for every dollar invested into it.

Think of the social effects of such a program as well. Many of you are probably too young to remember, but in Kennedy's time, we felt proud to be Americans, and believed in accomplishments like the space program.

If we would have continued in this vein, think where we might be today.

193 Comments

193 Comments


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[-] 4 points by philosophersstoned (233) from Gypsum, CO 2 years ago

economic collapse wasn't caused by "economics" (mind=blown, right?) it was caused by deregulation and wall street fraud. I say it wasnt caused by economics because the politicians/business interests demanding deregulation don't understand modern economics at even a basic undergraduate level,

[-] 3 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

And you consider deregulation and wall street fraud to have nothing to do with economics? I would say that both of those processes were justified by economic theories of free trade and globalization.

[-] 3 points by philosophersstoned (233) from Gypsum, CO 2 years ago

both of those processes (specifically the idea that the free market guarantees positive outcomes from deregulation) are justified by free market, Randian libertarianism. An ideology which explicitly rejects modern economic theories. Globalist free trade sucks but it had nothing to do with the causes behind the economic collapse (it just made the fallout worse).

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

What do you mean by "modern economic theories"?

Don't you think free trade had a role in the collapse? For example, once the factories were moved to China, and well paid American jobs disappeared, the market for manufactured products began to disappear.

[-] 4 points by philosophersstoned (233) from Gypsum, CO 2 years ago

Free trade mandated offshoring of manufacturing has been going on since the 1970s - in 2007/8 the collapse was caused by the largest US lenders bankrupting each other in a fraud scheme involving buying and selling each other's debt.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Yes, I like the way you said that.

"Free trade mandated offshoring of manufacturing has been going on since the 1970s - in 2007/8 the collapse was caused by the largest US lenders bankrupting each other in a fraud scheme involving buying and selling each other's debt."

Our Financial Managers are like Piranha. They go after what is vulnerable when they see the profit and the opportunity. They don't care if it is "Arbitrage" or buying a company and using the companies assets as collateral for the deal (as Max Keiser would say).

Worse, I think the politicians are ignorant. I think they feel they can put together a team once they get the power of the White House or the Senate. Of course they have to work on raising money, campaigning, and their own financial deals like insider trading when they are supposed to be working.

Politician either put us here (Financial Crisis without any remaining Manufacturing Base) because they are either ignorant, or because they are corrupt. Stick it to them - vote RP.

[-] 0 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

NO WAR

term limits help keep politicians ignorant

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I would say the collapse was "triggered" by those schemes, but the guts was eaten out of the system by that offshoring for a few decades.

[-] 0 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

I believe moving the factories to any nation is a perversion of free trade. We were suppose to trade goods not give them the keys to the shop.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I see. Personally, I think that each country should be as self sufficient as possible, and then trade whatever goods they have that are unique or special. I don't think trade should be based on low cost, because that inevitably leads to slavery.

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[-] 2 points by alexrai (851) 2 years ago

An Economist is kind of like a blind mouse poking his stick in whatever direction smells like research grants.

"Look at my nifty graph, it shows that if you cut taxes and tax revenue will increase. Someone must tell the President!"

"Oh sorry Mr. Regan, about that nifty theory I had... well it turns out it really did look a lot better on paper!... well I got this other graph, it shows that if you fling open your borders then American wealth will actually increase! This is the perfect solution, I'm sure of it this time."

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I think a lot of research is done like this these days. And then, the "fringe" economists, who actually predicted the downturn are pushed out of the picture, denied all media exposure and funding.

[-] 1 points by alexrai (851) 2 years ago

Yea, sad but true. There some who know what's up, but you're right they get no media attention at all.

The ones that seem to do the best are the ones who know how to prove something that is obviously too good to be true.. :p

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Yes, I suppose so, proving things that don't make any sense. But some people are quite devoted to it, and won't even change their minds when they see our system going as badly as it is.

[-] 2 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Wikipedia Policies for NeoLiberal Economics "READS" like Tactics for destroying America with Globalism.

1) Trade liberalization – liberalization of imports, with particular emphasis on elimination of quantitative restrictions (licensing, etc.); any trade protection to be provided by low and relatively uniform tariffs; thus encouraging competition and long term growth (Actually when NAFTA was signed Mexico lost since Foreign companies increased investments to make American goods and ship them to the US - We lost American Jobs, but American companies produced goods cheaply in Mexico for the US Consumer)

2) Liberalization of the "capital account" of the balance of payments, that is, allowing people the opportunity to invest funds overseas and allowing foreign funds to be invested in the home country (where is our working capital now? the banks don't trust each other and won't lend to small businesses)

3) Privatization of state enterprises; Promoting market provision of goods and services which the government cannot provide as effectively or efficiently, such as telecommunications, where having many service providers promotes choice and competition (We have privatized in the Department of Defense and people will tell you it is not cheaper - and leads to Crony Capitalism).

4) Deregulation – abolition of regulations that impede market entry or restrict competition, except for those justified on safety, environmental and consumer protection grounds, and prudent oversight of financial institutions (Savings and Loan Crisis, Financial Crisis of 2008, The Keating Five);

5) Legal security for property rights (Internet Copy Rights, DVDs, CDs);

6) Financialisation of capital (This is encouragement of Weapons Of Financial Mass Destruction - Financial Derivitive Instruments.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoliberal_economics

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

That's an interesting way to interpret it.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Chris Hedges was just on RT TV tonight. Pretty good as always. He talked about how politicians cave to the power structures that corrupt them. You know he is sueing Obama, right?

Couldn't find it on the internet, but here is Noam Chomsky "your world is a Forgery".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=otuSamqnF0A&feature=related

Here is Chomsky on Capitalism:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=el1CdxiDo6M&feature=related

Here is Chris Hedges on Psychopaths:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sU0AA31NcDw&feature=related

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Economics is not a hard science. It is a social science. That doesn't make it less relevant, it simply makes it less linear. It evaluates macro-systems with multiple, simultaneous variables that impact change. Here's an article I came across recently that demonstrates some of this in plain English. It is a speech about the impacts of the stimulus package, and talks about what we can and can't yet know about its effectiveness:

http://www.econ.berkeley.edu/~cromer/Written%20Version%20of%20Effects%20of%20Fiscal%20Policy.pdf

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

epa, I much enjoyed that paper ..thanks ;)

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

I had to go to Wikipedia to get some background:

In economics and political science, fiscal policy is the use of government expenditure and revenue collection (taxation) to influence the economy.[1]

Fiscal policy can be contrasted with the other main type of macroeconomic policy, monetary policy, which attempts to stabilize the economy by controlling interest rates and spending. The two main instruments of fiscal policy are government expenditure and taxation. Changes in the level and composition of taxation and government spending can impact the following variables in the economy:

Aggregate demand and the level of economic activity;

The pattern of resource allocation;

The distribution of income.

Fiscal policy refers to the use of the government budget to influence the first of these: economic activity.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiscal_policy

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

But if you throw machines into the mix, and understand their role and the role of innovation and infrastructure development in a society, a more physical perspective is required.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Economics incorporates the real, physical world: it is one of the variables it studies. Social science is not ungrounded theory. It measures behaviors and attempts to predict them on the basis of other behaviors, or political systems, or resources, or infrastructure, or machines, all of which effect each other.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

That sounds like the right idea, but because of our current economic crisis, I must suspect that something is wrong with the economic theories that have guided us over the past fifty years.

Further, I would think that there must be something superior in the economics that guided us through the great periods of economic growth in America.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Staring in the 1930s it was Keynesian economics that held sway. It's application was responsible for the longest, largest, most sustained period of economic growth in US History.

But, for ideological, not economic reasons, Reagan ushered in an age of neo-liberal economics led my Milton Freidman and and then Alan Greenspan. (Neo-liberal actually means right wing libertarian. It is not what it sounds like). That economic theory, based on the Austrian School and Hayeck, was discredited long before Reagan. It was discredited by mainstream economics the time of the Great Depression. (Indeed, the Austrian School believed no measuring of economic data was even possible and placed its theories squarely on par with theology.)

The shift in economic policy was, as I said, for political and ideological reasons. Reagan wanted to destroy what he saw as communism inherent in the New Deal. Those in his administration formulated an economic policy that would intentionally bring the federal government to the bring of bankruptcy , so it would be forced to end the social safety net. THat policy was called "Starve the Beast." Reagan was, at his core, a Libertarian. He wanted the smallest government allowable by the constitution. It was nearly pure ideology that determined his economic decisions.

Two years into his presidency, the Rockfeller Foundation, using Keyensian economics, analyzed Reagan's economic and political policies and predicted that we would be today exactly where are are. It even predicted the Arab Spring and the rise of OWS, not by name or location, but in terms of international and national social unrest and even rioting that would challenge the status quo system.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Interesting post. I like the history you bring to your points. effective. I was wondering about the Rockfeller Foundation. It seems like we have many think tanks out there. For me ...I get a little paranoid about each particular foundation of group.

It sounds like maybe the Rockefeller Foundation was doing some good.???

I think you are winning me over to Keynes. I see so much fear in the US of anyhing that could be called Socialism. Maybe the Austrian School has some merit, but without Antitrust law, protection from corporations "Gone Wild", etc... We do end up with Riots and Protests.

Americans are so afraid of Socialism, even when they benefit from Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Veterans get Social Medical care after they retire from the mililitary (but they are scared too), oh but also ...our congressmen get social medicine for life don't they?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Very interesting. I have my doubts though about Keynesian economics. I don't really understand it all, but I've heard there are doubts that Roosevelt ever really agreed with Keynes.

What do you advocate for an economic policy to get us out of the mess that we are in? I personally advocate a more modern version of the New Deal, being more high-tech like JFK's space program

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

What you advocate is Keyensian economics.

As to Roosevelt, he was not an ideologue. He tried whatever he thought would work. His application of Keyensian economics was not iron-clad. He abandoned it in 1937 for one year, convinced he could return to austerity and Classical Liberalism (again the free market economic school, not the political school). The result was a second depression. Seeing his error he reversed course again in 1938.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I've been reading that Keynes was an advocate of central banking, is that so?

Are you a Keynesian?

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

I am a progressive liberal, mostly. As to economics, I believe Keynes was right on target , and those who have amended and fleshed out his observations have been valuable.

Yes, Keynes was an advocate of central banking, as am I. It is the only institution that has the ability to regulate the otherwise wild ups and downs of the economy.

Perhaps teh best person to read right now, as his writings are so accessible by us layman, is Paul Krugman. He's an economics professor at Princeton and he write an opinion column for the NY Ties every Monday and Friday. He also keeps a daily blog there.

I would also go to Robert Reich's website. He also has a knack for explaining complex economics to the rest of us in non-wonky language

http://robertreich.org/.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

What about the alleged abuses of the federal reserve these days? Many of the OWS people appear to be anti-Fed.

What do you think of a national bank? It would be able to create credit for infrastructure projects at low interest, since it wouldn't have to pay profit to private owners.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

There have indeed been a few abuses at the Fed. But the Fed also saved us from s second Great Depression. Much of the criticism of that institution is well deserved. But a good deal of it seen on these fora are from Libertarians who have essentially infiltrated the movement.

I have little problem with the establishment of a national bank, except that it would likely be controlled by politicians, That would be a VERY bad thing. The idea of an infrastructure bank has been floated before, Although I'm certainly sympathetic to the idea, what happens next? A military bank? A bank solely devoted to social programs? Does each department of the executive branch set its own bank up? So you see, it can get messy if care is not taken.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

The purpose of a National Bank would be to provide credit for economic development projects. And from what I've heard others say here, it would be staffed more by engineers than politicians.

I think that a bank dedicated to economic development would provide indirect financing for some of the other causes you mentioned. Economic development would result in greater revenue to the state, which could then provide more funds for social programs, for example.

Also, the redevelopment of our industrial base, to provide the products and materials for infrastructure, would have many benefits for the military.

A new national bank would be the third one, so we have a few precedents to work off of.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

The staffing doesn't concern me. Who has authority over it does. If the outflow is politically determined, it could be another avenue for cronyism.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

What about the New Deal? Do you think it had problems with cronyism? It didn't use a real national bank, but something like it.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

I'm assuming you're talking about the presidency of FDR, not the New Deal legislation itself. I'm sure there was some cronyism, though I haven't looked at specific instances.. Wherever there is money, there is some corruption.

The New Deal was the establishment of Social Security and unemployment benefits, along with the establishment of the minimum wage, and welfare, among other legislation (including Glass/Steagall). Regarding funding jobs programs, no. That was taken care of by the treasury department. There was no separate bank involved. The Fed, however, increased the monetary base to make lending easier, just as it did during this depression.

Besides cronyism, there are other problems associate with politically operated national banks. Their misuse can effect elections. There are reasons we eliminated them. Frankly, I don;t remember enough of my history to be ale to cite you the reasons, and I'm too tired (I currently have some health issues) to start looking things up on Google. Perhaps you can research that on your own.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

So JFK and FDR were Keyensians? What does that mean?

And do you have a policy that you advocate for economic recovery?

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

Reagan won in 1980 due to ideological reasons, not economic? Come on, you are forgetting the 70's.

The problem here is you have a bunch of young peope on this board who listen to this and think it is gospel. The Austrian school of economics was discredited?

What a bunch of spin.

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Yup. I was there, You, were in some Librertardian utopian haze.

Reagan took advantage of the post Vietnam War schism in the country. He appealed to those who thought making America "strong" again would solve all its problems. Once in office, he manufactured a crisis in Granada and invaded, sending the marines in to win a great victory over a couple of hundred farmers armed with 19th century squirrel hunting rifles. That showed 'em by God. America was great again!

The Austrian School of economics hardly even qualifies as economics - more like a religion. One can't be innumerate and scientific at the same time. And yes, it has been thoroughly discredited. The only surprise is why people were too stupid it see it 70 years ago. Oh, wait: they DID.

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

So that is why the Nobel Prize was awarded to Milton Friedman in 1976 and Gary Becker in 1992 and Robert Mundell in 1999.

Yeah, your right, completely discredited. Don't let the facts get in your way.

Yeah, the 70's were just a wonderful period. That's why Carter won re-election.

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[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

so everything's all fine ... right Jflynn ? ... nothing was wrong and nothing needs fixed ....

[-] 1 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

I never said that. We have to put people back to work again. The Fed is doing its job by creating liquidity and if we don't change fiscal policy at all, the economy will recover. It already is.

On the fiscal side, we need to cut spending back to the average of 17-18% of GDP. We need to rationalize the tax code by treating capital gains, income and dividend income at the same rate so that there is no incentive to make one investment over the other. Finally we need to flatten the tax code and eliminate most of the deductions. All of this will eliminate the incentive to avoid taxes and make non effective investment decisions.

Will this solve all of the human problems, no, but it will go a long way to putting people back to work. How do we get people off of drugs, become responsible and stay married, become more educated, those are all human issues and I can't begin to solve those problems. I have my own ideas but they are religious and in my opinion don't belong in the government.

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

thank you... sounds like a productive reply... and I believe it's valid ... however I believe that it is not enough.... considering a mass majority of America's jobs went overseas and are not coming back.... further I do believe that technology will continue to eliminate more jobs, at a much higher rate than in past history ... we need to figure out ways to make new ... and that takes capital ... how are we going to get the thousands of new business ventures sitting idle from just our university's let alone the many once industrialists who have shut down due to out-sourcing and recession ?

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

Manufacturing jobs moved overseas primarily due to the cost advantage. That advantage is quickly being arbitraged away. Labor costs in Mexico are now equal to China so when you add in transportation and energy then you are even. You are already seeing manufacturing jobs moving quickly out of China back to localities and it is happening here in the US. It's in the numbers already.

Absolutely we need to create new jobs. They will come from companies not even started yet and inventions not even created. Ten years ago the oil sands in Canada were not productive and there was no Google. Zuckerberg was in college.

Get the incentives right and it will get invented.

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

well I dis-agree a tiny little bit.... today's investors want quick easy profits with zero gamble ... they are used to it ... they will not invest in new start up ventures regardless of the potential return.. primarily because of the time involved

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

There is more money invested by venture capitalist now than in anytime in our history. I was just having this conversation with an investor yesterday who pointed out to me that Mark Andressen just raised a $1b fund for venture investments.

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

yeah but for what kind of ventures? short term get rich quick scams ... or longer term projects that will actually employ people for long term.... see that is the problem... there is very little if any capital for job creation ...

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Yeah, really dude, Freidman and the Chicago school of economics should not be considered to be anything but a bad joke by now. Obama got a Nobel peace prize. Sometimes those Nobel guys don't quite get it right. Friedman was pushing free market, neoliberal economics. The same basic philosophy that set us up for the Great Depression. http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/04/02-5

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

There have been many studies on the depression and most of them talk about it being exacerbated by the Federal Reserve. As to the original cause, some people will argue that it was the original gold standard and the war reparations or even the US Fed loosening in 26 that caused the bubble.

Free market economics has helped more people get out of poverty than any other system so if it is a joke, it's a good one.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Free market economics doesn't help people out of poverty, it keeps them, or pushes them into it. Unless of course, your talking about the tiny number at the top. It enables exploitation and abuse. But you go on believing those talking points.

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[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

"Obviously, one does not need credentials to comment here. Complete idiots are allowed to comment here. You just proved that."

Eeew, that barb really hurt, can't respond to fact so you have to stomp your feet and scream. How old are you?

So you are going to support a person who supported the Ayatollah Khomeni and believes that 9/11 was a conspiracy. This is your level of knowledge. And I'm the idiot?

Get off the computer, put the game down, take a shower and go be productive.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

9-11 was a conspiracy? Ayattollah Khomeni? What the hell are you babbling about kid?

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

"Short answer to your first question. Free market economics were re-adopted starting in the 1970s and greatly accelerated under Ronald Reagan. So it did work till it was abandoned. Guess you didn't read any of the links".

Sorry, it has happened in the past 10 years. Don't let the facts get in your way.

You realize, just because you put up a website doesn't mean that you have the credentials to comment. Link a website, how funny. Go open a book and read true mathematical studies not some blather. Oh, you folks can't do that, because you need to go out in the streets and rampage and destroy. Put the drink down, take the cigarette out of your mouth, take a shower and try to do something productive instead of taking other's liberty away.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Obviously, one does not need credentials to comment here. Complete idiots are allowed to comment here. You just proved that.

[-] -1 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

"Clearly, you know nothing about history. America was built on protectionism. It has nothing to do with a controlled economy. Yes free market economics (neoliberalism) have been foisted upon the world. It is now being rejected. What do you think this site is about".

America was built on protectionism? Yeah, our steel industry is just booming right now, how come it didn't work? Textiles?

Free market economics is being rejected? Ha, don't let the facts get in your way, there are more countries employing a flat tax system now that any time in history. Even Sweden has reformed their code. Don't let the facts get in your way.

Yeah, I know nothing about history.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Short answer to your first question. Free market economics were re-adopted starting in the 1970s and greatly accelerated under Ronald Reagan. So it did work till it was abandoned. Guess you didn't read any of the links.

[-] -1 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

Fortunately history doesn't substantiate your claim. And the voters don't believe your claims either. More countries are employing free market economics and flat tax systems now than in any time in modern history. Maybe you should try to reform a government controlled economy like Cuba first.

Your brand of class warfare is getting old. Nobody begrudges the people at the top for working hard.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Clearly, you know nothing about history. America was built on protectionism. It has nothing to do with a controlled economy. Yes free market economics (neoliberalism) have been foisted upon the world. It is now being rejected. What do you think this site is about. http://richardfalk.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/rejecting-neoliberalism-renewing-the-utopian-imagination/ http://voiceamidstsilence.blogspot.com/2011/03/neo-liberalism-rejected.html http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/Content.aspx?id=161212 http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?storycode=418295

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

I've read plenty of research papers by physicists discussing the relationship between thermodynamics and economics, behavioral economics is a flourishing sub-discipline in economics, borrowing from sociology, biology, neurology, etc. (I just started reading a book titled Predicting Irrationality, based on studies in behavioral economics). Econometrics applies calculus, statistics, computer technology, etc.

Yes, there are brands of economics that may do what you're suggesting, but these theories (e.g. Austrian economics) are largely rejected by mainstream economists.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Interesting comment but the economic science that I'm talking about is almost completely opposite from those theories that you are mentioning. Most of those ideas are from contemporary economics, derived from Adam Smith and free trade, and to me are part of today's problem.

It's not at all Austrian economics. What I'm talking about is completely opposed to that. I'm talking about what's called the "American System" of economics. Look it up at wikipedia. Historically it's been popularly referred to as "the American way".

It's founders were Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, etc.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

You know, if you read Wealth of Nations by Smith, you'll find that he would have never endorsed the trading system we have today. I do have some problems with classical economics, but I do admit, I'm a bit biased (Smith was good friends with David Hume, one of my favorites) :)

Nevertheless, our system of trade is completely dysfunctional (you get no argument from me on that point).

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I'll try to read that some day.

What do you think would be a more functional trading system?

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

A fair trading system. For instance, our exports are charged value added taxes (averaging 20% on the invoice price) by virtually ALL of our trading partners, while in most cases, we charge nothing. I simply think we should charge a border tax on imports equivalent to what the country of origin charges on our exports (including value added taxes, any indirect taxes, etc. ).

[-] 1 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

So If country A invents a cure for cancer and country B invents a cure for diabetes, should country A charge country B a VAT to import the cure?

[-] 3 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Ideally, no ... but that's not what we're talking about. As it stands, we're country A, who charges NO value added tax, everyone else is country B, who ALL charge our exporters a value added tax. I'm simply suggesting we have to level the playing field, and if countries stop charging a VAT on our goods and services, then we reciprocate in kind.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Country A is still better off without charging tariffs (though there are cases where it isn't) even if all other countries are charging tariff. Of course, this is a general free market theory and there are plenty of exceptions. Bottom line, economic theory does assume the presence of tariffs whether or not Adam Smith might have.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Where's the empirical support for this so called theory? I mean, we've been hearing this bullshit line rattled off for years, and it this point it should be obvious to any reasonably intelligent person that this "hypothesis" is (in general) WRONG. Maybe in economics they like calling stuff a "theory" even where it has no experimental support, but this is not how science works. Until a proposition has been "tested" it is a hypothesis (and if economists disagree, then that's simply more proof that the economics field is heading down the wrong path, and we shouldn't be inclined to give the "opinions" of economists very much weight in our analysis).

It seems to me that economics is approximately in the same place where alchemy was before Doyle and Dalton finally transformed chemistry into a rigorous science.

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

There are too many variables for it to be a science and you have to factor in human behaviour which is difficult.

The trading of goods and money happens everyday all the time over borders and states. You can see this experiment happening very nicely between the 50 states as they trade goods with different rules and taxes.

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

You don't think the US has been better off by receiving high quality goods at cheap prices. Look at the proliferation of goods into people's homes. When I grew up we couldn't afford a TV set, now even the poorest of people have a flat screen HDTV. YOu can take this theory all the way down the product chain.

We could go back to protected borders and everybody could ride a horse.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

I'm not suggesting we go back to "protected borders" ... what I am suggesting is either trying to negotiate a border tax (that counterbalances value added taxes charged on our exports), or implement a value added tax of our own. Quite frankly, I acknowledge that even if we had a 17% value added tax, even if we credited our exports (as other nations who impose a value added tax do), we probably still wouldn't be able to competitively manufacture television sets (although I think we would become a more attractive nation to build a manufacturing facility, or we can at least stop the bleeding). The fact is, the retail mark up on consumer goods is huge, and enacting a value added tax would have a very small impact on prices paid by consumers. It would, however, have an enormous impact on our deficit.

[-] 1 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

The government will spend all the money you give them. So the prices of goods go up while the government gets to waste it spending it on their pet projects. It's not efficient and corrupt.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

The way I see it is but for involvement in two wars, a deep recession, and continued stimulus spending (in light of high unemployment numbers) our structural deficit actually isn't that bad. I seen a report that stated a 0.25% increase in the payroll tax now, and another one further in the future (for a total of "one half of one percent") would resolve the solvency problem with Medicare (permanently). Considering Medicare is able to insure exclusively the "most expensive to insure" segment of our population, for a "cost lower than it costs to insure a young worker through private coverage" ... I think we'd be insane to abandon Medicare in favor of some sort of voucher scheme. If we had a value added tax, it would not only help to mitigate our trade imbalance and help us balance our budget (putting our currency on a trajectory of long term sustainability), but it would also enable us to lower taxes on average workers (the very people whose wages have been stagnant or in decline for the last few decades).

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

"The only countries who have a flat tax is Eastern European nations, and on average, they pay slightly more taxes compared to their western European counterparts. I fail to see how this provides a fully developed nation, like the US, with a meaningful example of a flat tax? I mean, all your doing here is pushing partisan politics, and I don't see how this is very helpful in the context of discussing a VAT?"

The discussion of the flat tax is not partisan at all. Milton Friedman and the Chicgao professors have been discussing it in academia for years.

Yes, the majority of countries who employ the flat tax are Eastern European and they have enjoyed very good growth. Hong Kong has had one for many years. The VAT can be very complicated while a flat tax is one calculation. The big stumbling block will be eliminating deductions so mving to a flatter code a la Simpson Bowles will probably have a better chance of passing.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

If you think Hong Kong, or the barely developed nations of Eastern Europe is a good analogy with the United States (in this context), I'll let that speak for itself. As for Friedman and the so called Chicago school, I think it's safe to say they were wrong (the Japanese experience of the 1990's should be enough to demonstrate the weakness of their over-reliance on monetary policy).

You're stuck having to explain the remarkable success of Germany, notwithstanding having a VAT (and a 25% capital gains tax rate). You can't say it's because Germany is rich in oil or other natural resources, because they're not. You can't say it's because they skimp on social programs, because they don't.

Not saying it's impossible to go too far with social programs and government largess (Greece is a perfect example of what can go wrong when fiscal discipline is abandoned). Nevertheless, the US is more comparable with Germany as opposed to Greece, Eastern Europe, or Hong Kong. We have a dynamic and still fairly diverse economy. Our levels of public spending is roughly in line with Germany (probably somewhat lower), and no where near Greece. However, we're also not a developing nation, and it costs more to maintain the United States compared to the cost of operating the average Eastern European nation.

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

"We need a value added tax (one that works like the value added taxes of most of our trading partners, crediting exports, which btw is permissible under WTO rules). This is one reason why our broader economy is losing ground (a debt driven consumption economy is unsustainable, except in the minds of pseudo-economists, oops, I mean republicans).

I mean seriously, the data should be overwhelming to any reasonably intelligent observer. I'd like to do even more to help our exporters, but I also wouldn't want to start a trade war (so we should remain compliant with WTO rules), but again, a VAT is permissible under WTO.

Furthermore, Germany and Norway (unemployment rates of 5.5% and 3.3% respectively) have capital gains tax rates of 25% and 28% (respectively). While we can and probably should carve out exemptions (like only cap gains "over" a certain amount would be subjected to the higher tax rate), rewarding corporate raiders is hardly a wise strategy which could be reasonably calculated to induce more robust economic growth.

Sure, we should also cut spending, namely military, homeland security, our massive prison complex (we imprison more people than communist China, a nation with 4 times our population), etc., so there's plenty of room to cut fat (without attacking our social safety net).

So in summary, no, I don't buy your claim that "you understand economics" ... you seem like another, garden variety, indoctrinated republican".

You can't add a VAT on top of the existing schedules as that is just putting more government control where we don't need it. The problem with a VAT is that it can be raised easily. Eliminate all of the other taxes and it would work. The flat tax is working very well in the countries it has been in use so it might work better than a VAT but it is still to be seen.

You don't want a trade war because someone will have to pay for the war and there will be a lot of casualties.

I'm not for any exemption as it distorts the investment decision. Hard to compare Norway to anybody since so much of their economy is oil based. If we keep pushing shale gas, like Canada, we could do the same but Obama did delay the XL pipeline. Go figure.

Sorry if you don't believe me. The rest of the world does and most of America does that's why the votes are going the way they are going.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

The only countries who have a flat tax is Eastern European nations, and on average, they pay slightly more taxes compared to their western European counterparts. I fail to see how this provides a fully developed nation, like the US, with a meaningful example of a flat tax? I mean, all your doing here is pushing partisan politics, and I don't see how this is very helpful in the context of discussing a VAT?

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

You sound like a republican poster ....

Absolutely, am proud of it. I know my economics, unlike most here.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

We need a value added tax (one that works like the value added taxes of most of our trading partners, crediting exports, which btw is permissible under WTO rules). This is one reason why our broader economy is losing ground (a debt driven consumption economy is unsustainable, except in the minds of pseudo-economists, oops, I mean republicans).

I mean seriously, the data should be overwhelming to any reasonably intelligent observer. I'd like to do even more to help our exporters, but I also wouldn't want to start a trade war (so we should remain compliant with WTO rules), but again, a VAT is permissible under WTO.

Furthermore, Germany and Norway (unemployment rates of 5.5% and 3.3% respectively) have capital gains tax rates of 25% and 28% (respectively). While we can and probably should carve out exemptions (like only cap gains "over" a certain amount would be subjected to the higher tax rate), rewarding corporate raiders is hardly a wise strategy which could be reasonably calculated to induce more robust economic growth.

Sure, we should also cut spending, namely military, homeland security, our massive prison complex (we imprison more people than communist China, a nation with 4 times our population), etc., so there's plenty of room to cut fat (without attacking our social safety net).

So in summary, no, I don't buy your claim that "you understand economics" ... you seem like another, garden variety, indoctrinated republican.

[-] 0 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

According to IRS data, median income has grown over the past 30 years however the rate has grown slower than the top 10% and that is what people are upset about. The numbers are interesting as well since these results are skewed since 47% of the population are not paying Federal taxes.

Comparing the median income results across countries also shows that this effect has occurred most major countries so it is not just a US effect. It did not happen in Greece. A lot of discussion now is focused on the low cost effect that came from Chinese products as the problem but that is not for certain.

Regarding the budget, we do not have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem We could tax the entire 1% at a 100% and not eliminate the deficit. Expenses as a percent of GDP is to high - 22% - and needs t come down to about 18%, which is the long run average.

The healthcare issue is pretty simple as private corporation have solved it a long time ago. Raise the amount of the monthly payment and the co-pay and individuals will be much more careful in how they spend their dollars. this will lower the overall cost and use which is the primary problem. Right now, it doesn't matter how many tests are done as the individuals don't have to pay.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

You sound like a republican poster ....

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

this is reply to Middleaged post .... (thread ran out of nest capacity)...

well.. I'm too tired to give this what it's worth right now... but imo it's a good post.,.. a couple of quick things ... I looked into MMT (Mosler ?) a few months back.. and I either didn't catch the theory or I thought it was incomplete... because imo it was far too simple... however I didn't disagree w/ it... yet... I'll have to look at it again...

as far as removing the Central Bank/s .. imo... aside for it recently being compromised so to speak... used for corrupt activities... imo the idea for it is sound ... and I think we just need to clean out the garbage .... similar to our govt being founded on sound ideals ... we just need to clean it up instead of replacing it ...

it's my understanding that the Central Bank/s are about improving the global economic conditions and it leans on thirst of big profits to do that.... but it does largely ignore the local (America;s) economy.... so do we really want to remove it ?

I think a better answer is to pick up where they left off or fail.... we could support local banks (state banks, like the Bank of North Dakota) ... which focus on the domestic economy...

now that's all and good ... but it still leaves them at a disadvantage compared to the Central Bank/s ... for the State Banks have to borrow from the Central Bank ... no?

so imo... we need to either change their rules or build one higher ... one that can actually help the State Banks ...

realistically it's far easier to build new and side step the problems than it is to try to dismantle something that in in operation and is employing zillions of people,,,,

As far as the rest of the ideas... they look good imo.... but I think a few of the issues will disappear after the domestic financing problem is solved ...

I'll give it another look after a couple hours sleep ... thanks MA ;)

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

If I remember correctly, Chapter 4 of Mankiw should hold your answer.

As for your esteemed views on economics, please do publish a paper on this and then we will talk.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

If your memory serves you well, then you should be able to enunciate at least a few bullet points regarding the "evidence" for this hypothesis? In fact, there is no evidence, but we do know our manufacturing base has been in decline ever since this brand of pseudo-economics has infected our mainstream discourse on this and related issues. We do know wealth disparity is increasing, wages for the average person has been stagnant (or in decline), and we've only been able to achieve economic growth through over leveraging ourselves, incurring absurd and unsustainable amounts of debt.

[-] 1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Well I have better things to do than drawing demand supply curves and point out producer and consumer surpluses. Read the book and you would get a good understanding.

As to whether or not we have enough tariff or non tariff barriers, I think we do. Understand that if we increased our tariff barriers, other countries won't take it lying down. They too would increase their barriers and it would become harder for American products/services to enter those markets. And we wont be any better off because domestic markets for American products are pretty saturated and we depend heavily on imports. And yet we have our barriers as tight as they should be. Setting up barriers is not an easy task, the failure of Doha rounds should tell you that.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

You see, the problem is we dug ourselves into an absurd trade policy from the beginning, which sort of shifted the goal post. If I want to ship a product to Europe, I will pay (on average) a 20% value added tax on its invoice price. Same if I want to ship a product to China, Japan, etc. When we reverse the situation, there is no value added tax, and many products enter the US completely duty free.

You'll have to excuse me for thinking this policy approach is utterly retarded. We should simply say we will charge the same amount on imports as the country of origin would charge on our exports. Give the commerce department the power to set these tax rates, and mandate automatic changes in the tax rates where countries either increase taxes on our exports, or decrease them.

They have a lot more to lose then we do, and the fear mongering by companies (who really couldn't give a shit less about our trade deficit) is utter bullshit. No country in their right mind would further increase tariffs when they know that our import taxes will automatically increase in kind. And if they complain about the US charging the "same exact amount of taxes" they charge, then they're not acting in good faith, and therefore there's no reason for us to take their complaints into serious consideration.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Do you know about the WTO and how we have stranglehold on it? Or the concept of 'national treatment'? And we are subsidizing our farmers to an extent that renders African farmers noncompetitive and has stunted the growth and prosperity of the whole continent.

As as a banker (analyst actually), I can tell you that you are very wrong. Increasing trade barriers further would be a very bad idea.

And to aid your understanding in these matter, might I suggest you read the following over the week

  1. What should trade negotiators negotiate about? - Paul Krugman, Journal of Economic Literature (1997)
  2. How effective are trade barriers? - Haverman, Rienhart and Thursby, Review of Economics and Statistic, (2003)
  3. International Trade: Chapter 8,7,11 - Richard Pomfret
  4. China's WTO Entry : Anti dumping safeguards and disputes - Chad Brown, NBER Working Paper (2007)
  5. US Trade deficits with China and Mexico : Hecksher-Ohlin Theorem revisited- Ghanndian, The Journal of American Academy of Business (2004)
  6. The Boundaries of Multinational Enterprises and Theory of International Trade - Markusen, Journal of Economic Perspectives (1995)
[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

It's dumbfounding that economists like Krugman would come out against a border tax adjustment to offset value added taxes, when in fact "we know" that tariffs (if applied correctly) DO work (e.g. Bush introduced taxes on steel imports to deal with dumping, which were effective).

Moreover, the proposal, the Border Tax Equity Act (Representative Pascrell, D. NJ), would require negotiating with WTO prior to implementation of the tax.

In short, this does not require triggering a trade war.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Make no mistake, we do have import tariffs and export subsidies and to a significant extent.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Nothing nearly enough to outweigh what we're up against (in terms of value added taxes, export subsidies, blocking or impeding our access to markets, etc.). It would be one thing if we were talking about third world, dirt poor countries (who could truly use an advantage in trade), but we're not, we're talking about so called trading partners, who are deliberately working to undermine our industrial base. In light of this obvious fact, our current trade policy is absolutely dysfunctional (and I would argue unsustainable). It's not only undermining our industrial base, but eventually it will destroy the value of our currency. We simply cannot expect to maintain our quality of life if we allow our industrial base to disappear. Don't get wrong, if you talk to a banker, he'll give you a hundred reasons why I'm wrong.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

No we don't "have import tariffs and subsidies to a significant extent." If we did, we wouldn't have a massive trade deficit.

[-] 0 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Mankiw is a joke.So is (was) your apparent idol Milton Friedman.Both were merely sycophants to the wealthy interests they serve(ed) Pure neoliberal bullshit. https://www.google.com/search?sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=mankiw+student+walk+out

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Yes I know about the walkout by some of the undergrads. And the joke is on the students because from what i heard the topic that day was "economic inequality". The so-called protesters who moved out were not some well informed bunch but rather kids taking econ 101. They hardly knew what they were protesting against.

And as for Prof Mankiw and Friedman being a joke, dude get a PhD and may be publish a paper and then make such stupid pompous statements. Until then peddle your bullshit to someone else. I took a few classes of Prof Mankiw and he was a really good teacher and I deep respect for him. I can understand that you do not respect teacher or academics in general, I do. So target your crap at others.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

No, I did not say I don't respect academics or teachers in general. I specified Mankiw and Friedman. You seem a bit overly impressed with the PhD, however. There have been, and are many other econ PhDs that do not agree with the Neoliberal theories of those clowns. Maybe you should take a closer look at some opposing views before you blindly accept the first story you heard.

[-] -1 points by Jflynn1964 (-206) 2 years ago

If another country has a cure for diabetes, you are telling me that you would not accept it without charging them a fee?

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

This is a silly argument (and you know it).

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Sounds good to me, I'm all for it.

[Removed]

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

The solution to Fascist Austerity and Fascist Economics: Below article is about how there was an Italian Summit where people who really don't like Fascism received a panel from the US who explained that Austerity increases unemployment and kills jobs.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/02/michael-hudson-2181-italians-pack-a-sports-arena-to-learn-modern-monetary-theory-%e2%80%93-the-economy-doesn%e2%80%99t-need-to-suffer-neoliberal-austerity.html

Video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XP60tpwu5cs

This Modern Monetary Theory believes in good government spending and good government debt. In the US we have had Neoliberal Economic Policies for 30-40 years since the Chicago School of Economics came up with this crap.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/modern-monetary-theory-is-an-unconventional-take-on-economic-strategy/2012/02/15/gIQAR8uPMR_story.html

http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2012/02/22/890211/yes-virginia-there-really-is-modern-monetary-theory/

I believe most MMT followers like the idea of getting rid of government borrowing from Big New york Banks. They believe the US Treasury can print its own money like the "Greenback" under Lincoln. There is no reason for the government to borrow money and pay interest.

1) Austerity Bad.
2) Government Spending Good.
3) If you stop government spending you lose jobs and increase unemployment.
4) The money supply is managed according to the population growth to allow plenty of money to flow in the economy without creating inflation.

http://www.neweconomicperspectives.org/p/modern-money-primer.html

William Black posted a long comment to further explain the MMT solution to Fascism at February 29, 2012 at 4:00 am. you will have to scroll down pretty far. It is located below the article posted here:

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/02/michael-hudson-2181-italians-pack-a-sports-arena-to-learn-modern-monetary-theory-%e2%80%93-the-economy-doesn%e2%80%99t-need-to-suffer-neoliberal-austerity.html

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Interesting post, you've really been doing your homework. Here are a few comments:

Monetarism in itself is the problem. Its the system used by the owners of central banks to control entire nations. Instead, we should have a "credit system" something like Lincoln's Greenbacks, but really the idea is to have a national bank, as Alexander Hamilton originally proposed:

These are some videos on monetarism vs. a credit system:

The Dollar System: Eliminate Monetarism http://larouchepac.com/node/11720?lid=0-0-2&relation=11674

It's Time To Pull The Plug On Monetarism http://larouchepac.com/node/19089

National Candidates Slate Podcast: "Credit, Not Monetarism" http://larouchepac.com/node/21074

One other comment is that instead of speaking in terms of "government spending" we should say "government investing" because we usually think of spending as for consumption, whereas this would be investment in productive capacity.

Much of the investment over the past decades, has been pure gambling, in which the house always wins. We need to get back to investing in improvements to the real, physical economy.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

This website seems to have articles by Modern monetary Theory people like Randal Wray. I was sent the link since the interview with Warren Mosler is supposed to be good. I'm just checking it out. Most of my economic acquaintances are MMT or Austrian School, but I'm thinking I might be Keynesian.

http://www.neweconomicperspectives.org/2012/02/warren-mosler-because-we-think-we-can.html

Adding Roger Mitchell

http://rodgermmitchell.wordpress.com/2010/08/13/monetarily-sovereign-the-key-to-understanding-economics/

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Charlie McGrath Video on the 6 Pillars (26 minutes). Don't know who has seen it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=5SAWmer7s3g

[-] 1 points by Budcm (208) 2 years ago

Everything that man needs for survival comes from the earth. Whatever man's mind conjures up to satisfy his need or greed has either been grown, mined, fished for or transformed from something that was, from the space program to Dunkin' Donuts.

Economics is easy. A goodly supply of natural resources will do it for you. Without it you will suffer.

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

Are we talking about capitalistic economics or socialistic economics ? they are different.... in a simplistic, pure sense....

  • Economics from a mathematical view... looking at the ideals

in this approach there are different systems to project economic outcome, one system is based on the ideals or goals of insuring;

  • Individual Freedom & Economic Prosperity ....

this system is based on monetary incentives provided from free-enterprise .... the pure model includes; no restrictions, free-markets & unlimited incentives

in practice... the system prospers & grows rapidly... and then fails when the monetary wealth falls into the hands of the few.... and the systems collapses on itself.... however with every cycle there is much progress, much innovation and discovery... as well as much suffering by the majority at the time of the collapse...

through real-time analysis & projection.. we attempt to predict when to slow it down in effort to stall or bypass the collapse... which is done by applying restrictions...

eventually when it does collapse .... the people start to demand Economic Freedom ...

  • we must understand that this system is cyclic by nature ...

the other, seemingly opposing system is based on the ideals or goals of insuring;

  • Economic Freedom & Individual Prosperity ....

this system is based on common & shared property & resources... the pure model includes; guaranteed economic wealth, healthcare, education, food, etc. near total restrictions and limited incentives...

in practice... the system prospers & grows when first established ... all are taken care of, all have the necessities, and all have work.... and eventually the system starts to slow ... the growth stagnates due to lack of incentives ... and productivity fails ....

through real-time analysis & projection.. we attempt to promote productivity through reducing restrictions and applying non-common & non shared incentives .... eventually the monetary wealth falls into the hands of the few.... and the people start to demand Economic Prosperity...

another cyclic system by nature ...

  • Funny how it all works ....

so... a simple fricking question .... why one or the other ? why not all ?

why not a system based on the ideals & goals of insuring;

  • Individual Freedom, Economic Prosperity, Economic Freedom & Individual Prosperity

all working together... checking and balancing themselves

the simplest approach to building this is to use what is already in place...

a "Federal Reserve Bank" and a new "Social Reserve Bank" working together in harmony

[-] 1 points by Roundtree (37) 2 years ago

It's called the 'dismal science' for a reason: it's only multi variable forecasting based on GREED and FEAR.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Okay, I remember FDR created full employment to get us out of the depression. Corporate Executives will give you another story of how we came out of the depression, no doubt.

So I am probably with you, if you want to stimulate the economy with a big government investment program or a similar government "full" employment program.

My stimulus plan idea has been to bring military service members and all but like 5,000 civilians back to the continental US. This would require construction at US military bases because there are no houses, barracks, training facilities, and maintenance facilities for these additional troops. Also these troops would spend money in the US Economy instead of overseas. So I am saying leave Germany, and leave Korea and Japan. WWII is over. The Navy and Air force have bases all over the world and they would have to be considered for cuts to reduce the economic foot print.

There are other infrastructure ideas that could be part of an economic program. Zeitgeist has a idea for building cities with green areas using materials that would last hundreds of years and require very little maintenance. I don't know the science behind it though.

Germany's Autobahn is a big success. But not sure if they could build it today with current labor costs and contract prices.

We could have an Economic Boom if we forgave some of the debt in this country. Why should the US Government borrow money or be forced to pay back domestic debt that it created? Why do we use the FED at all. The US Treasury is part of our government and can back our fiat money. Monetary Policy is about balancing the amount of money in the system so that everyone has enough without creating inflation. This means that the money supply should be tied to population increases or decreases.

Banks make money out of thin air and loan it to us as if they are special people that deserve to have some advantage over the rest of us. Did you see the video "Money Masters" with Bill Still? I liked the first version better even though it was longer.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Money_Masters

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Yes, a kind of New Deal is what I would like, but high tech. For example, a comprehensive magnetic levitation train route. You know, those trains that don't have wheels, but float on a magnetic cushion. Also, to solve the problems of nuclear energy to fuel such a transportation system. Moving up substantially in technology would be the key.

A bunch of those returning veterans could be put to work on such projects, also a lot of the unemployed young people from our cities. They could enter free apprenticeship programs to learn higher level skills, rather than going broke on a college degree that would get them no where.

Passing Glass Steagall, I believe would hand the reorganization of the debt for us.

I haven't seen "Money Masters" but will check it out.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

No Doubt Arturo, you are a smart guy...

However, I am mystified as to how you can put this forward. Economics does not exist in a bubble and is not composed of just a few systems. It is pretty hard to prove economics is a science. And the study of economics would not have any control at all unless you study a subsistance farm village some place in a third world country. Honestly I mean you can make assumptions about a tiny economy, but you can't really prove anything significant in a country as big as the USA.

Economics is an Art not as Science. Nothing can be proven because of all the overlapping systems involved and the lack of controls required to complete one study.

Having said that and having noted that you didn't provide any structure in the above for a real discussion... let me stick my neck out:

Mitt Romney's Taxes prove that Trickly Down Economics Doesn't work. Romney did not start a business and didn't hire American employees. He is rich, he got reduced capital gains under bush (Most of his yearly earning are Dividends).

And what has he done to make the US Stronger? He took as little Risk as possible to keep his money secure. He structured his wealth in stocks or bonds that produce Dividends. He is Risk Averse. The Rich are not dumb: they don't want to take Risks when they can collect Dividends from secure businesses with a good business model that have proven themselves.

Therefore, cutting taxes for the Rich doesn't help put US Workers back to work.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Regarding the study of economics as a science, you certainly can't do it as a lab experiment, but there is someone who made economic predictions based on a scientific approach that have turned out to be correct.

I believe we could develop an economic program based on scientific principles, and we would get the expected results, in a measurable way.

Most practitioners of economics in our times perform it as like a mystery religion. They use a bunch of fancy mumbo-jumbo to mystify the people into thinking they can't understand economics, or that things just happen economically, and we don't know why.

I would say the example of a scientific economic practitioner would have been JFK, whose space program produced ten dollars worth of economic development for every dollar we put into it.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Yes. We have pseudo science and pseudo studies get a lot of ink in the USA.

I recently read of a study by Warren Mosler at a university UKCM, the "Buckeroo". Perhaps you would find it useful. Probably Mr. Mosler has the actual study posted on line, but I don't remember where it is. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/warren-mosler/the-umkc-buckaroo-a-curre_b_970447.html

Warren Mosler is the Founder of MMT, Modern Monetary Theory, and is an associate of the Austrian School based on a resume listed for his appearance on a radio show, http://www.georgejarkesy.com. Apparently MMT has like 10,000 followers now.

The Apollo program did produce many great technology spin offs. although I heard recently someone repeating that DoD investments were responsible. I prefer to attribute the spin offs to the space program myself.

It is obvious that Bankers are either charlatans, fake economist, or just obvious crooks with government cover through crony capitalism (see William K. Black videos). Well with the "Revolving Door" between Government and Industry - We really can't trust much of the statements or economic data that come from the government (Conflict of Intrest corruption). Here is a simple economic video called Punk Economics you may have seen posted here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oAR0VRLRGHE

Bill Black video that some lay economist have passed around. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36kizAjPmuo&list=PL0F4ACDBAAD6AA9CA&index=2&feature=plpp_video

You may have missed one video.

Brief 17 minutes run down on current environment: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9Qe0HlKKfw

Teaching session 56 minutes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=6YT84CokUsA

Controversy about firing US AG: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I12oDVr2RZQ&feature=related

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

By the way, are you a libertarian? I've noticed that libertarians know a lot about personal investing, but don't believe much in the government investing in big projects.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

I'm kind of all over the place. I'm sort of liberal in social areas. I'm conservative in money areas, government employment increases, and the bureaucratic paradox. I'm probably Libertarian in terms of gun rights.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

How do you tell a science from a pseudo science? Like the old saying goes - you can know a tree by its fruits.

Does economic science give good fruit? I would say so, and would support that by comparing the results of JFK's administration to our economic situation today.

I wouldn't trust government information either, my source is a private agency, which is not permitted to be publicized in the mainstream media.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Yes. You have to do your own science. We all have to learn and practice being critical of ideas. Critical thinking. Talk to natural scientist and learn how they think.

The scientific method is pretty clear. There are no theories until they can be proved to predict clearly. Even a hypothesis has to have evidence to go forward. The hypothesis has to be about things that can be proved, measured, quantified, controlled. Wiki does a better explanation than me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

And then there is the problem of power, status, and self interest when you talk to people of position. An engineer may not reveal his secrets for setting up scientific equipment, because it is his work. Academics may attack you for trying to discuss ideas which are counter to their own.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Some interesting points.

And by the way, its physical science that is the preferred metaphor for economic science. Leibniz is the one to whom the foundation of economic science is primarily attributed. He based it off his study of "heat machines" used in manufacturing around 200 years ago, I think.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

How can we reduce all of economics down to the study of one factory or a group of machines. Talk about reductionism!

I would posit that Economics is the study of many countries, Many Laws based on their own peculiar history (English, Spanish, Tort, Chinese), many different Systems, many different Markets, many different actors who control market forces, and many different kinds of currency with different assets behind them that effect their different exchange rates in relation to other currencies, oh and don't forget how commodities, scarce resources, and regional prices of oil and petroleum products play into economic activity.

Higher prices, higher taxes, Fiscal Policy, Monetary policy, and debt levels of both the government, consumers, and businesses influence economic activity. I HAVE TO ADD WAR, since war has ravaged the economies in Libya, Iraq, and Afghanistan...

I still will call economics a Social Study - it is more like studying government.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Perhaps economic science seems simplistic, but its what we used during our periods of rapid growth, it has also resulted in our decline when we abandoned it, today being the best example.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

I agree with notaneoliberal that it is a philosophy.

But I went to the page in wikipedia on American Economics and think I stand with on that. I have written a little this year and have suggested tarrifs are needed. The Wikipedia page is pretty simple. There is no way to build a complete Philosophy or Policy based on the Wikipedia page as it stands now.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Here are some more sources for you on the American System of economics:

REPORT ON THE SUBJECT OF MANUFACTURES by Alexander Hamilton http://american_almanac.tripod.com/hammanuf.htm

REPORT ON A NATIONAL BANK http://american_almanac.tripod.com/hambank.htm

Henry Carey and William McKinley: THE AMERICAN SYSTEM VS. BRITISH FREE TRADE LOOTING http://american_almanac.tripod.com/carey95.htm

HENRY CAREY RIPPED BRITAIN'S "FREE TRADE" LOOTING SYSTEM http://american_almanac.tripod.com/hcarey.htm

Henry Clay: National Development Must Take Precedence Over Debt Payments http://american_almanac.tripod.com/hclay.htm

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: Discoveries and Inventions http://american_almanac.tripod.com/lincoln.htm

Abraham Lincoln Imposes Science On American Agriculture http://american_almanac.tripod.com/lincoln2.htm

Abraham Lincoln's "Bank War" http://american_almanac.tripod.com/lincoln3.htm

How Abraham Lincoln Mobilized the Economy for War and Peace http://american_almanac.tripod.com/chaitlin.htm#railroads

THE ROOTS OF THE AMERICAN SYSTEM: From Cameralism, to the American System of Economics http://american_almanac.tripod.com/cameral.htm

COLBERT'S LEGACY TO THE AMERICAN SYSTEM http://american_almanac.tripod.com/colbert.htm

The American Promethus http://american_almanac.tripod.com/prometh2.htm

THE FRANKLIN SCHOOL STARTS MODERN ENGLAND http://american_almanac.tripod.com/chaiben.htm

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Thanks I want to spend some time with this. I'll copy over everything to a document and save it.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Let me know if you have any interesting insights.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

The economic "philosophy" that has been taught in our major universities in the last 30 years or so, has primarily been Milton Friedman/ Chicago Economics. Basically "free market" propaganda. AKA- Neoliberal economics. The US economy was not built on this "system". The US economy was built on "protectionism". A term that has been turned in to a dirty word.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

That sounds right. It is a philosophy or a social study.

I was reading the Wikipedia page because of your post and found listing the neoliberal policy areas. It provides a good structure for discussion or rebuttle. I agree. Crony Capitalism and Gobalism seems to have striped us of manufacturing and solid economic strength.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Yes, in fact, it seems that neoliberal philosophy has taken on the characteristics of a religious cult.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Yes, originally the US was based on protectionism, but I believe the more comprehensive phrase for America's indigenous economics is in fact the "American System" of economics:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_System_%28economic_plan%29

Its early proponents were Alexander Hamilton, Henry Clay and John Quincy Adams.

It was based on tariffs, like you say, but also emphasized a National Bank to finance internal improvements to the country such as roads and canals.

If we reactivated the American Economic system today, it would resolve our financial crisis.

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

You are correct. Alexander Hamilton (the first Secretary of the Treasury}, was instrumental in the passage of the Tariff Act of 1789, passed by the first US Congress. and signed by Pres. George Washington. Reenactment of the "American System" would indeed resolve our economic problems. You are one of the few who get that. Folks, free trade IS NOT good for America.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Yes.

By the way, I see that you are "not an eo liberal", what does that mean? What is it that you are not? And more importantly, what is is that you are?

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Not a neoliberal. I would consider myself progressive/liberal. Here's a definition of neoliberal. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoliberalism

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Ok, I got the words wrong, but I suspected as much. We are kindred spirits. Though I would call myself a conservative democrat.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Yes, I think we are kindred spirits. Epa 1, in his/her comment above,seems to have a good handle on reality. I think you, with the insight you have demonstrated, might find this site informative. http://economyincrisis.org/

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Thanks, I'm going to bookmark it.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Reply to your comment : No we don't "have import tariffs and subsidies to a significant extent." If we did, we wouldn't have a massive trade deficit.

So the only determining factor in trade deficits is trade barriers, is it? How wise of you.

Anyways to aid your understanding in these matter, might I suggest you read the following over the week

  1. What should trade negotiators negotiate about? - Paul Krugman, Journal of Economic Literature (1997)
  2. How effective are trade barriers? - Haverman, Rienhart and Thursby, Review of Economics and Statistic, (2003)
  3. International Trade: Chapter 8,7,11 - Richard Pomfret
  4. China's WTO Entry : Anti dumping safeguards and disputes - Chad Brown, NBER Working Paper (2007)
  5. US Trade deficits with China and Mexico : Hecksher-Ohlin Theorem revisited- Ghanndian, The Journal of American Academy of Business (2004)
  6. The Boundaries of Multinational Enterprises and Theory of International Trade - Markusen, Journal of Economic Perspectives (1995)

Since, as per own admission, you have reading about economics for over 10 years, I am sure you would be interested in reading a above leading to a fruitful and rhetoric-less discussion between us.

And as for protectionism, yes we did protect our industries but soon our industries became very strong and we had the power usurp whatever fledgling industry there was in any other country and dump that country with our products. Those countries tried to protect themselves and that is when 'protectionism' became a bad word. But it isnt a bad word when we provide massive subsidies to our inefficient farmers.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

The "reading about economics for 10 years" wasn't my statement. It is very true that the US hegemony has damaged other countries by pressuring them to adopt free trade (neoliberal) policies. On your statement about our farmers, maybe more accurately described as agribiz, it is indeed true that with the help of subsidies, they have crushed some of the ag sectors of developing nations, particulaiy Mexico. I don't agree however, that US ag is inefficient. Quite the contrary, which makes the subsidies all the more unnecessary. That said, the issue of trade protectionism and import tariffs is a bit of a different thing. My main concern is in the realm of manufacturing. It is in that area that the most wealth is created, and where we have lost millions of jobs.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

haha... overuse of the word neoliberal. You are funny and I am going to sleep.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

You're already asleep.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by FreeDiscussion1 (109) 2 years ago

Here is the real science of economics. Get paper and ink and print money on government presses. Print as much as you want and dont worry about what it does to the economy. Dont worry about a balance budget, (like you and I or every state must follow) just keep the presses running 24/7. Make it up as you go. And the big issue,, make sure you hire someone like timothy geithner that cant even fill out his own tax return to make the decisions. There you go. It really is smoke and mirrors

[-] 1 points by ThunderclapNewman (1083) from Nanty Glo, PA 2 years ago

What you're referring to is the fiat standard, right? Currency based on faith that the government that prints that currency will stand behind it, right?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I think I heard about this somewhere before.

[Removed]

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Ah, Mr. Friedman I am so delighted to hear your views on economics. Oh wait, you aren't Friedman. You aren't even a PhD in Economics, though even PhD would think a few million times before making such comments. Who are you again?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I am just a person who is interested in economics, and since the economics of today is such a massive failure, as evidenced by the economic collapse of our society, I am particularly interested in the traditional economics of America which has produced tremendous growth at various points in our history.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Massive failure? By who's assessment?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Are you not aware of the collapse of our economy? Or perhaps you personally are doing fine, and don't care about the suffering of others, so you don't see it as a failure. Is that so?

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

One bump on the road, and you want to leave the town?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I believe this collapse is systemic, not just a momentary dip. I think the system will have to be changed quite dramatically in order to provide prosperity to the majority of the people.

Otherwise, it will continue to decline not just into a depression, but a "new dark age", in which, through war, famine and plague, the population will be reduced to less than a billion people.

Perhaps it sounds like I'm overdoing it, but we have had dark ages before, and I believe one could happen again.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

And the analysis that supports your 'belief' can be found where? Also is this belief borne out of your years of academic research as an economist? Just curious.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I do not have a formal education in economics, but have been reading about it for about ten years now. My source, Lyndon Larouche, is frequently ridiculed and despised here as a conspiracy theorist, so I hesitate to even mention his name. But since you asked, I will provide a record of his economic forecasts:

LaRouche’s Nine Economic Forecasts

Autumn 1956

Forecast: A major U.S. economic recession, triggered by the over-stretching of a post-1954 credit-bubble centered in financing of automobiles, housing, and analogous consumer goods.

What happened: Recession spiral begins in February 1957, lasting until mid-1958. Hundreds of thousands of industrial workers lose their jobs, as unemployment climbs to highest levels since the Depression.

1959-60

Forecast: A series of major monetary disturbances, leading toward a collapse of the Bretton Woods agreements, resulting in increased looting of developing-sector nations, and austerity measures modeled upon those of fascists regimes.

What happened: On Aug. 15, 1971, President Nixon decouples the dollar from gold, collapsing the post-World War II Bretton Woods monetary system internationally. Nixon then initiates Phase I, II, and III austerity measures at home.

October 1979

Forecast: A devastating recession, beginning early 1980, as a result of Federal Reserve chairman Paul Volcker’s credit-strangulation policies. “Volcker will cause a 15% recession in the U.S. economy, probably putting the United States into a recession twice as severe as that of 1974,” LaRouche wrote on Oct. 16.

What happened: Collapse of U.S. housing industry, agricultural and industrial production occurs, and is charted accurately by LaRouche’s LaRouche-Riemann economic model.

February 1983

Forecast: LaRouche informs the Soviet government, that if it were to reject a Western offer of joint ABM development (which became known as the U.S. Strategic Defense Initiative, when it was adopted by President Reagan on March 23, 1983), the strains on the Comecon economy would lead to a collapse of that economic system in about five years.

What happened: Soviet boss Yuri Andropov rejects the SDI offer in Spring 1983. The Berlin Wall falls in November 1989. The Gorbachov regime falls in 1991.

Spring 1984

Forecast: A collapse in a large section of the U.S. banking system: the savings and loan and related sectors. “The banking system as a whole is at the brink of collapse,” LaRouche told a June 1 television audience.

What happened: Texas S&Ls begin to collapse in late 1987. Through the end of the decade, the savings and loan system coast to coast is in crisis, with many banks going under, or being purchased by larger institutions. The crisis requires a billion-dollar bailout with Federal tax dollars.

May 1987

Forecast: The outbreak of a major collapse in the stock market beginning approximately Oct. 10, 1987. This was LaRouche’s first and only stock-market forecast.

What happened: Black Monday, Oct. 19, 1987: the Dow Jones Industrial Average drops 508 points, or 22.6%, the largest loss in its history, twice the collapse of 1929.

Spring 1988

Forecast: During an April 12 nationwide half-hour TV address, LaRouche described the “bouncing ball” phenomenon as the key to following the continuing collapse of the U.S. economy through the course of apparent short-term fluctuations relatively up or down.

What happened: Federal government “indicators,” and the Dow Jones Average, adjusted to include non-productive service industries and jobs, and profits from activities such as derivatives trading, show modest recovery, while the productive base of the economy continues to collapse.

November 1991

Forecast: An ongoing “mudslide” of economic collapse, rather than a dramatic blowout. “Many people have been looking for a definitive one-day, two-day, three-day financial crash, perhaps on the markets, with the Dow Jones, sometimes called Baby Jones, Index crashing 500 or 1,000 points or more. What they are seeing is . . . is the great mudslide of 1991,” LaRouche wrote on Nov. 23.

What happened: 1993-94 bankruptcies of major financial institutions in Venezuela, Germany, Spain, and elsewhere signal a systemic crisis; the bond market collapses; major players, such as the Canada-based Olympia & York, the world’s large real estate company, go under.

June 1994

Forecast: “The presently existing global financial and monetary system will disintegrate during the near term. The collapse might occur this Spring, or Summer, or next Autumn; it could come next year; it will almost certainly occur during President William Clinton’s first term in office; it will occur soon. That collapse into disintegration is inevitable, because it could not be stopped now by anything but the politically improbable decision by leading governments to put the relevant financial and monetary institutions into bankruptcy reorganization.”

What happened: After a series of derivative blowouts in 1994-95, and the near-collapse of the entire monetary system with the Mexican crisis of that same period, a hyperinflationary spiral, including rapid derivatives expansion, delayed the disintegration into President Clinton’s second term. Starting in the Summer of 1997, the rapid phase of worldwide systemic collapse began in Asia and proceeded to the point of state bankruptcies in Russia, and the danger of a global derivatives blowout at any moment.

[-] 2 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

For a while there I thought smartcapitolist was an alcoholic. BUT think arturo is on track. smartcapitolist is kind of repeating things he was told by others that want to shape politics.

I remember shrill voices against Lyndon LaRouche when he ran for president. My experience is that it was probably part of the conservative party that decided to get LaRouche out of the way (politically).

This is typical US Politics. Fear and Smear (F&S).

There is like one chance in 100 that a real political, economic, or social issue with get significant discussion in this country. The reason is that people want to stand up like a mob and shout down the other side. It is very, VERY, Effective. And any office that has to deal with politics with a higher headquarters or a competing office knows how the politics are played.

LaRouche was smeared. And that is politics.

However, the list of forecasts above makes arturo's point about his vision of Economic Science. Data and Statistics can be studied to find weakness and strength. Government data has to be criticized and understood from historical and systemic changes. Many systems are involved in an economy.

I just wonder at all the good analysts that have been smeared so that either republicans or democracts can win an issue, cover up a crime, or get their paid off guy in office.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Thank you for your support.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

I stopped reading after 'Lyndon LaRouche'. Haha, LaRouche, of all people? Awesome. And as for your 10 years of reading economics, I started reading Economist back in high school, but that does not make me an Economist.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I never claimed to be an economist.

And as for Larouche, his forecasts turned out to be true, which is much more than I can say for most of today's crop of economists who never saw the current crisis coming.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

I just want to thank you for giving me some good reading material. I'll be looking for LaRouche's writings next time I'm out buying books. I have read other readings from people who predicted this, and thought that the moneyed interests purposefully brought us to our knees. But after reading the stupid comments the oxymoron, smartcapitalist, made, I'm of the opinion that Hubristic thinking, which is embodied by him, is more to blame. He reminds me of a cheerleader who blindly supports his team, not out of intelligence, but out of fidelity. Another person who predicted this "Age of Turbulence" was Greenspan, though he contributed to the predicament, he also predicted the fall out in his memoirs.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Thanks for your support.

If you want to read about Larouche, no need to go to the bookstore, just check out his site:

http://larouchepac.com/

There is a ton of material there, both videos and articles.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

I very much doubt he made any forecast at all.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Well, that's the thing about letting someone else form your opinion for you. If you don't look at the evidence, because of something that somebody told you about Larouche, you may have your doubts, but will never know for sure.

As I mentioned, I had been reading Larouche since before the financial crisis began, and I watched it happen, just like he predicted. I think that you must accept what the mainstream tells you without thinking about it critically.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Thanks for the condescending remarks about how I form my opinions. Thats exactly the kind of stuff i would expect to hear from someone who, of all things, reads Laraouche. You are not first and sadly not the last sample of this sort I have encountered in my life.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Personally I don't trust Wikipedia at all. If you read Larouche's website, you would see that he has nothing to do with racism or fascism.

He believes in the policies of FDR and JFK, if you don't like those people, you wouldn't like him.

Larouche was the kind of consultant who helped factories to run better, he didn't take them apart and sell them like Mitt Romney.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

"He believes in the policies of FDR and JFK, if you don't like those people, you wouldn't like him." - Only a sith believes in absolutes ;-)

As for his consulting experience, well there doesnt seem to be much evidence of it and frankly i dont care either.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

So, what else can I say? You apparently know nothing about Larouche, except what other people have told you. So you probably wouldn't know things like that he was a successful management consulting executive before getting into politics.

If you had actually read something by Larouche and disagreed with that, your comments about him might make more sense to me. But all you have done is reject him, without giving any plausible reason why.

[-] 3 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

I have a limited memory which is as it is not as good as I would like it to be. With all due respect, I don't want to fill whatever little space there is with garbage which is why I don't know anything about this guy. But a cursory look at his wikipedia entry says he had ties with KKK and American Nazi Party and that itself should count as plausible reason to consider him a nutcase. If you want to listen to people of that disposition, by all means knock yourself up but don't count me in. And I did not find anything about his work as a consultant but how is being a consultant a blanket justification for everything one says? Mitt Romney was a very successful consultant as well, does that mean his words are gospel truths?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Please note that when you went to Wikipedia, instead of looking at Larouche's website, you did exactly what I said you do, which is, allowing other people to form your opinion for you.

As a Wall Street banker, you have probably done this for most of your life, allowing the mainstream media and educational institutions to form your opinions, since they reward you substantially for this.

But if you were to trace the financiers of the mainstream media and our educational institutions, you would find that they are the original enemies of America, the remnants of the British empire.

Through their control of the mainstream media and educational institutions, they have formed the opinions of most Americans into anti-American opinions, such as the beliefs in free trade and globalization.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

duh..gimme a break mate

[-] -2 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

If you'd spent a year reading books by mainstream economists, it might have served you better. As for the financial crisis, I dont know about LaRouche, but a lot of 'real' economists did warn Wall Street. It's a different thing that we did not listen.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I don't know how many you mean by a "lot" of real economists warning Wall Street, but it seems to me that it is the mainstream that has gotten us into this mess.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Well Raghuram Rajan of Booth for starters. He talked about it in a paper "Has Financial Development Made the World Riskier?" back in 2005. And then there are some others as well.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

And for some reason, you consider this Raghuram Rajan to be legitimate, but not so for Larouche. If you were to read his website, you would find that he is in no way a racist or extremist. For example, a number of Jews and Blacks occupy top positions in his organization.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

And when did 'not being a racist' become the foremost criterion for legitimacy? I mean sure any right thinking person would not be racist, but that's doesnt make them economist. Stop preaching to me about LaRouche.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

You made comments about Nazis and the KKK, so I just wanted to clarify that Larouche is not a racist. And I am not preaching, I am discussing. That is the purpose of forums such as this.

I will grant you though that Larouche in himself is not the critical factor to be discussed, but rather our return to a productive economic system.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

'This' Raguram Rajan is, as Wikipedia says, currently the Eric J. Gleacher Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago. He is also an honorary economic adviser to Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh (appointed 2008.)[2] and the current President of the American Finance Association. He previously was the chief economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and headed a committee appointed by the Planning Commission on financial reforms in India.

These are the kind of people who are legitimate experts, not larouche

What is Larouche again?

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I have to go out now, but will read your paper when I return. Just let me reiterate though that reality is my best witness. Glass Steagall took us out of the Great Depression, and until it is passed again, there will be no full recovery.

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

For the most part, the Democrats and Republicans are pretty useless today. The whole mainstream of economic and political "leadership" is "leading" us downwards.

Why should I care what is a "joke" to the mainstream. They are the ones that are a joke. The evidence is all around you. The only way our economy will ever recover is if we pass Glass Steagall. Just wait and see if it turns out to be true or not.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Here is a critical paper on Glass Steagall http://faculty.chicagobooth.edu/raghuram.rajan/research/papers/randy1.pdf

I know its too much to expect you to read the whole thing, considering your intellectual caliber and attention span, but I hope against hope

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Since you so pine for Glass Steagall, please explain to all our benefit any four provisions of the said act.

[+] -6 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

[-] 1 points by smartcapitalist (162) 9 minutes ago

Since you so pine for Glass Steagall, please explain to all our benefit any four provisions of the said act. ↥like ↧dislike permalink

Let us not stint on your education smartcapitalist.

Here have the whole thing:

http://www.archive.org/details/FullTextTheGlass-steagallActA.k.a.TheBankingActOf1933

[-] 2 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

He was a successful management consultant, presidential candidate, and head of the American labor party. I believe the University of Chicago and the IMF, for the most part, are supporting economic policies that have created our current crisis.

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

it really hurts to agree w/ SC... ;) but here I have to agree... Larouche's policies didn't hold up... at least not enough to what we are looking for ....otherwise he would have succeeded and we wouldn't be in this mess....

we need to sharpen up... get smart & knowledgeable, and find the solutions, if we are truly going to change anything ... All existing economic policies have holes... let's figure it out and come up with a better fix... we got 3 months... we need to be in consensus with something real by spring ... or this movement will not go anywhere past awareness building ... imo...

and when we say real ... we must be referring to "something real enough that even the hardened capitalists like SC would agree to and support"

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Only you and Larouche know how successful his consulting stint was. Also dude, almost every friend of mine is either a management consulting (that too with the big 3) or an investment banker. Would you believe everything my buddies have to say? Even I won't for that matter. And how influential/important was the American Labor Party? Was it as important as the Dems or the GOP? He could as well have been a member of the American Lingerie Party and it would matter just the same to me. That party was a joke. And so was it's head. And as for him running for presidents, porn stars have run for mayor. Big deal. Seriously dude, did you suffer brain damage.

You are actually comparing a renowned economist with this idiot LaRouche? You got guts. And you are comparing vaunted institutions like the Chicago Booth school and IMF with a yesteryear joke called the American Labor party? Are you nuts? Go to a psychiatrist.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

No body is forcing you to remain in the conversation. I can understand how you find these ideas threatening, but nobody is harassing you. You are the one saying things like "are you nuts".

And the idea that WW3 is a dangerous possibility now is not my opinion, it is the opinion of top military leaders around the world.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

The main purpose of Glass Steagall is to separate commercial and merchant banking. Wealthy individuals should not be allowed to gamble with our government insured deposits.

It would put our entire financial system through bankruptcy reorganization, and all of the insolvent Wall Street firms out of business. It would eliminate all the phony money in our system. Than we would be able to start over on a real foundation, rebuilding our infrastructure and manufacturing industries.

Reality is my best witness, I was telling people years ago that we would have an economic crisis, and it happened. Now, I'm telling you that we may have some fluctuations in the economy, but no real recovery until we pass Glass Steagall. Just watch and see if it happens or not.

That is, if we have the chance. Just as the great depression led to WW2, now we have US, Chinese and Russian generals all warning that a war against Iran would lead us to a nuclear WW3.

To learn more about this, just go to Google or YouTube and look up "WW3 Iran", "WW3 Russia", "WW3 China"

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Are you Larouche by any chance? Looks like it, considering you are the only one preaching about him.

My dear sir, I find it extremely insulting to converse with a person who 1. agrees with LaRouche 2. thinks we are gonna have ww3. I therefore implore you, for the sake of my own as well as yours self respect and not to mention sanity to stop this conversation here. You are entitled to your opinions, thats one the perils of this being a free country. But I have an option to not be mentally harassed by it.

[+] -4 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

I'm not an economist. But some things just need common sense to be understood.

Pyramid money dispersal strong through the base = Stable?

Inverse Pyramid money dispersal strong through the Top = Precarious?

It only makes sense that when there is little at the bottom the top is unstable.

Has anyone noticed unstable economy's around the world?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

I have indeed noticed it.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Dude, I know Glass Steagall better than you do or for that matter anyone in this forum. I was only trying to see what you guys know. And since all you did was provide me with the link, I am certain you know next to nothing.

And yes, here is a critical paper on the very act http://faculty.chicagobooth.edu/raghuram.rajan/research/papers/randy1.pdf

I know it would be beyond your intellectual capacity, not to mention attention span, to go through the whole thing. Yet, I hope against hope.

[-] 2 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

I love how you bring this retro bull shit to the forefront. You realize that if any school of thought is headed to the wayside, it is the Chicago School of Economics. They were so ideological that they could "find no evidence that commercial bank securities affiliates systematically fooled the public." Well, if they were not able to find the evidence then, I believe there is enough evidence this time around that even an ideological blinded bunch of coots can't help but stumble over it. Again, you need to take some time out of being the master of the universe, and read some history. The stock market crashed back then because of people using credit to bet in the stock market and GS stopped this from happening.

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

And where did you get your PhD in Economics from, again? A masters may be?

[-] 3 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

I'm a history nut, and I dont fuck with that pseudo science though I do read a lot of books by economists. I even read milton friedman's "Capitalism and Freedom" Although he makes some good points, his lack of understanding of what the gov't is supposed to do, makes him nothing more than a free market cheerleader and not an intellectual. He is more of a sophist than an economists. But you being such a credential snob, won't ever think differently, until a PHD puts Milton in his place. You should read "A Discourse on the Moral Effects of the Arts and Sciences (1750)," by a Genevan philosopher, Jean-Jacques Rousseau. He taught me that thinking for yourself frees you from being a stooge, and a credential snob. If the ones with all the degrees were so smart, we would not be in this conundrum.

[-] 2 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

I agree .... a Phd ... often don't mean shit ... or maybe it does ... hehe

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

You guys remind me of this http://imgace.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/overly-permissive-hippie-parents-numbers-are-a-human-construct-man.jpg

And IMHO there is nothing more boring than history.

[-] -2 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

I can understand why you guys hate the rich or bankers, consultants or even people who are well educated. Its called jealousy.

[-] 3 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

funny. but no. it is that you well educated people suffer from delusional, group think. You have as many original thoughts as a robot has original movements. I can always tell what political affiliation PhDs have when they open their mouth and espouse three sentences. Besides that "you are a hater" line is very juvenile, don't you think? Actually I laugh at Phd recipients because they payed for something they could have gotten for free. And to agree with your sugar daddy, Milton Friedman, education is just a licencing gimmick.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

I am sure it is

[-] -2 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

You wish. You blind marching narcissistic arrogant myopic belittling supporter of the greedy/corrupt status-quo.

Keep on digging your hole with your fellow blind marchers. You will be leading no one anywhere with your stupid classist rhetoric. You instead provide much inspiration for the support of OCCUPY and 99%.

[-] -2 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

Aah, looks like you added narcissist to the mix. Neat.

[+] -5 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig Dig

Do remember to hydrate, we would all feel just awful if you collapsed from exhaustion.

[+] -5 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Yeah thank you, you arrogant obtuse myopic status-quo supporter.

Please continue digging your hole. You are positive reinforcement for why this movement ( Occupy and 99% ) will never die.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 2 years ago

' arrogant obtuse myopic status-quo supporter' is better than smelly filthy jobless park squatting hippie.

And that is the reason no one takes you guys seriously.

[+] -5 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

You wish you blind marching belittling supporter of corruption and abuse.