Post-Keynesian Observations

Understanding the Macroeconomy

Archive for May 2009

Happy Memorial Day!

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Those of you who know me, know that the one academic subject I love more than economics is military history. I therefore present to you my Memorial Day Quiz!

Memorial Day Quiz

Written by rommeldak

May 25, 2009 at 9:40 pm

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And shut up about the budget deficit!!!

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For crying out loud, there is simply no way to increase the level of economic activity at present without increasing the national debt. “Oh, no, what about our grandchildren?!?!?!” To whom do you think we owe the majority of this money?! 70% is owed to Americans, and of that over half is owed to the Federal Government. Furthermore, US debt is an extremely safe form in which to save, and at any given time there are trillions of dollars worth of saving worldwide. My point is that while each particularly treasury bill must be repaid, there is simply not now or ever any reason for the us to reduce the national debt to zero. Ever. People want to save, and US debt is a popular means by which to do so.

So a) trying to reduce the budget deficit in the midst of a deep recession is idiotic, b) it’s not like the national debt has to be reduced to zero at some point (far from it, in fact it’s been much larger as a percent of GDP), and c) even if we did have to do that, 70% of the money just goes to other Americans.

Sorry for my tone, but we are in desperate times and the sort of economic ignorance that I keep seeing labeled as “analysis” scares/annoys the hell out of me. It’s scaremongering and it’s liable to make things much worse.

Written by rommeldak

May 20, 2009 at 6:55 am

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Stop Looking at the Stock Market!!!

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Just a quick note to officially record my frustration with the frequent use on the part of the media to measure the success of economic policy by it’s impact (or assumed impact) on the stock market. It’s those same financial geniuses that got us in this mess in the first place, and deciding whether or not we are doing the right thing by watching their reactions is not logical. We absolutely must break with the notion that financial markets are rational, reasonable measures of our material well being. They are not. GDP growth and unemployment are, and it will still be some months before we see them recover. God forbid that we sabotage that process because we felt as if we weren’t doing enough for Wall Street!

Written by rommeldak

May 20, 2009 at 1:43 am

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Honestly, I haven’t forgotten!

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I’m just dead beat! This week is finals, then I teach a three-week summer course. Maybe I can do an update soon. Or, maybe something else will come up! Frankly, I’m shocked that I got as much written as I did!

Written by rommeldak

May 4, 2009 at 10:34 am

Posted in Uncategorized