The Center of the Universe

St Croix, United States Virgin Islands

MOSLER'S LAW: There is no financial crisis so deep that a sufficiently large tax cut or spending increase cannot deal with it.

11 Responses to “Links”

  1. Michael Warhurst Says:

    The “free market” is a myth. A “free market” is defined as a market with few if any barriers to entry and exit (a barrier to exit immediately becomes a barrier to entry!) with prices and products determined by demand.
    In every “market” the large players erect every conceivable barrier to entry/exit as quickly as possible – a “free market” is one NOT dominated by few large entities whose pricing/profit objectives determine price and product levels irregardless of the demand in the product markets serviced. The few large entities prices will all move in lock-step to extract as much profit as possible from each consumer AND ELIMINATE COMPETITION BETWEEN THEMSELVES. Consolidation is far better than competition for extracting maximum profits.
    To expect so called “free markets” to set correct prices or levels for anything is currently a very dicey proposition (do ya feel lucky sucker?) and if they are to be used for this purpose they must be highly regulated and effectively monitored to promote and sustain real competition in deed as well as word.
    Markets, as they currently exist, have only one value- dollars. Dollars measure everything that business does. Human and social values (morality) can never be measured or expressed in terms of dollars – therefore they can never be introduced into the equations that business uses to determine action.
    Morality has three positions:
    Moral, which means you know what it is and you do it
    Immoral, which means you know what it is and you don’t do it. And.
    Amoral, which means you never take morality into consideration in the first place!
    There can be no better definition of amorality than someone for whom dollars are the only and determining value considered before decision/action.
    Markets, corporations and most businesses only consider dollars before decision/action and therefore are AMORAL. This is true regardless of the personal religious piety of the players. Personal “feelings” have no place in business decisions only dollars count.
    Therefore all “markets” are not free but manipulated for a small number of large businesses and, markets are amoral and have no, zero, ability to consider, respond to or act in response to a single human or social value – unless playing to that human/social value happens to be profitable in terms of dollars.
    Markets are neither free nor moral. I think we would be kidding ourselves to leave socially or humanly impacting business activities strictly to any unregulated and unmonitored “market” much less a mythical “free market”.

    Reply

    WARREN MOSLER Reply:

    markets also require institutional structure- property type laws, contract law, and enforcement.

    i call them competitive markets

    Reply

    Steven Shaw Reply:

    I agree there are no free markets ATM but do find some of your post concerning. If the market doesn’t set the price, who does? Moreover, what do you mean by the “correct” price?

    I agree that there’s something wrong with the way companies (corporations) are set up. They aren’t people but are given rights like a person but are hard to punish (a company cannot go to jail) and they “live” forever… I imagine there’s something fundamentally wrong with company law. Perhaps law should stick to controlling the actions between people.

    I do feel that folks (society) have more say over companies than you give them credit for. You can vote with your feet/wallet (though I realise it’s not always as easy as that – monopolies etc).

    Unfortunately the biggest problems go unnoticed by most and they do not know to vote with their feet, their voices or ballets: 1) monetary system, 2) political system. Although I haven’t thought about it in detail, it all seems to boil down to ethics (which is something you seem most concerned about). If we were all 100% certain what an ethical monetary system was, then we could implement one. If we were all 100% certain what an ethical political system was, then we’d have that too. Basically, we want to be sure what the law should be. Unfortunately, I don’t see how we can get to a 100% consensus on it. In the meantime, we do our best :).

    Reply

    Michael Warhurst Reply:

    In terms of business – the right price is the price which provides them with the most dollar profit – regardless of the human or environmental cost. The bottom line is that anyone or any business, however structured, whose only value used is dollars is amoral. These businesses and individuals have zero ability to determine the difference between moral and immoral because morality is not constructed from dollars it is constructed from human and social values – none of the benefits of which can be measured in dollars, while most of the costs can be measured in dollars.
    Likewise ethics are also composed of human and social values – none of which can be measured in dollars. However, at times being seen as “acting” ethically can be supportive of profit growth through good PR manipulation and is considered – not on the basis of human values – but on the basis of cost vs. potential profit (Cost and profit are denominated in dollars and is the only decision required by business) from new or increased business if the business is seen to act ethically. So business ethicality, 99.9% of the time is only allowed if the business can make a profit on it – not because this ethicality satisfies human and social values, but because the appearance of ethicality is “money in the bank”.
    There can be no such a thing as an “ethical” monetary system. Monetary systems only measure and respond to dollars not to human or social values which are required for ethical behaviour.
    Ethical government is determined by its acting for and in the best interests of the majority of voters – not just for and in the best interests of a favoured few wealthy elites.
    If a government is actually democratically elected and has no artificial constraints or restraints put on it – it can reflect the human and social values of the electorate which equates to moral and ethical behaviour.
    If government were incapable of forcing business to be moral and ethical why would wealthy elites whose money machine is business – pay out hundred of millions of dollars to buy and corrupt politicians and deadlock democracy?
    Business is amoral and government has the ability to be moral and reflect the human and social values of the majority of the electorate. Amoral business hates moral government. Grover Norquist – the darling of the Republican/Wall Street set – has been famously quoted many times saying “government needs to be shrunk in size until it can be drowned in a bath-tub. He wasn’t kidding!!
    In fact government is the only thing that can force amoral business to be moral.
    The Greeks invented not only democracy but also the antithesis of democracy called republic. Plato invented the republic because Socrates was forced to commit suicide by Greek democrats because he refused to recant the public statement that “not all positions in government should be elected, some require special skills that cannot necessarily by acquired in a general election”. Plato freaked out at the murder of his teacher by the Greek democrats and created the form of government which is the opposite of democracy and called it a republic.
    A democracy is run by the majority of voters while a republic is run by elites who in modern times are wealthy elites who own business and Wall Street and have purchased Washington with money and has mental control of most of the population through ownership and control of the media.
    In 1905 in England the laws concerning who could vote were changed to allow all citizens to vote – prior to this time only landowners were allowed to vote. The Conservative Party (the English Republicans) went to the south of England for a week of howling at the moon and gnashing of teeth – at the end of which they came to two conclusions. First, that they could no longer control Parliament and the government; and second that they could however control what people thought about government through their ownership and control of newspapers (in modern times the media).
    From 1905 until this day wealthy elites have used their subservient media to trash government and blame government for all of the social and economic problems created by amoral wealthy elites.
    In America the wealthy elites have totally captured not only Washington but the media and the minds of most Americans.
    If government is stalemated – who wins? Wealthy elites who have been raking in the dough fist over paw or workers? Wealthy elites (business owners) win of course!! In America government power is subdivided into more than fifty small power sources. What do you think are the chances that any party could ever assemble majorities and control state governments and the federal government and have appointed the majority of the Supreme Court and probably the Appeals Court?? Until this time or until the country actually goes bankrupt nothing will change and Wall Street business (wealthy elites) will continue to be totally amoral and destroy the greatest consumers of history – the American middle class.

    Reply

  2. Michael Warhurst Says:

    Free markets – or competitive markets – are defined as markets for which there are few or no barriers to entry or exit and which comprise many competitors. The first strategy and objective of business is to completely reduce or eliminate competition by erecting artificial barriers to competition like high costs to enter and exit.
    Business wants to drive government into extreme debt so it doesn’t have the skills or the budget to force amoral business to act morally and ethically.Business wants the electorate to hate government and not participate in the political process. This “blinds and binds” the referee (the electors) – the first objective and strategy of all cheaters!!

    Cheers

    Michael

    Reply

    Tom Hickey Reply:

    What you are describing is the neoliberal agenda. Neoliberalism presents itself as an economic theory based on efficiency, but it is actually a political philosophy based on a social agenda that favors capital (property) and treats labor as a commodity (wage = price)

    Here is a short critique that sums it up:

    (i) the use of the rhetoric of market fundamentalism, in which the market or ostensibly “free economic exchange” is presented as the most efficient mechanism to work the economic system, to pave the way for the increasingly unfettered functioning of private capital, both domestic and foreign;

    (ii) the use of the notion of a minimalist state, to be realised by dismantling its developmentalist version, to legitimise the shift of various terms of trade and mechanisms of distribution in favour of the owners of capital and their functionaries and conceal the conversion of segments of the state apparatus into sites for primitive accumulation; and

    (iii) the pursuit of a regime of accumulation where, the home market and deficit-financed state expenditure are replaced by exports and debt-financed private expenditure as the principal stimuli to growth.

    Reply

    Tom Hickey Reply:

    Oops. Here’s the link:

    The Success & Failure of Neoliberalism – C P Chandrasekhar

    Reply

  3. Steven Shaw Says:

    Thanks for your reply. I’d like to respond in detail but cannot right now. I do note that you failed to answer my critiques of your “correct price” idea. Who sets the correct price? What _is_ the correct price? You only explained that the market price is wrong because amoral companies and wealthy elites do not take into account ecological and other social costs.

    Reply

    WARREN MOSLER Reply:

    the institutional structure set by congress- laws, regs, etc- go a long way in setting (relative) prices of most everything.

    Reply

  4. William Wilson Says:

    Yesterday, I watched the live stream video of your talk with the members of OMWSPD in Dallas on June 24 and just wanted to say that was the best presentation of an explanation of most of the essentials of MMT which I have come across which could be of assistance to the non-economist. If the initial 17 minutes were deleted and the rest edited and polished a bit, it might be a bit more complete/coherent.

    Though yesterday’s link at Mike Normans site is not directly to your video:

    http://www.livestream.com/owsmakewallstreetpaydallas?utm_source=lsplayer&utm_medium=embed&utm_campaign=footerlinks

    a little searching gets to the correct link:

    http://www.livestream.com/owsmakewallstreetpaydallas/video?clipId=pla_334828f7-343b-4a95-afa3-8edb4dbb37d8

    Reply

  5. Massimiliano Scandurra Says:

    A warm hug from Sicily. Thank you Mr. Mosler for giving us these precious tools. http://www.sicilia-memmt.info 5th day of life.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>