A comfort to many a politician has lately arrived in Stephenie Kelton’s book THE DEFICIT MYTH.
From the cover:
Stephanie Kelton's brilliant exploration of modern monetary theory (MMT) dramatically changes our understanding of how we can best deal with crucial issues ranging from poverty and inequality to creating jobs, expanding health care coverage, climate change, and building resilient infrastructure. Any ambitious proposal, however, inevitably runs into the buzz saw of how to find the money to pay for it, rooted in myths about deficits that are hobbling us as a country.
Kelton busts through the myths that prevent us from taking action: that the federal government should budget like a household, that deficits will harm the next generation, crowd out private investment, and undermine long-term growth, and that entitlements are propelling us toward a grave fiscal crisis.
MMT, as Kelton shows, shifts the terrain from narrow budgetary questions to one of broader economic and social benefits. With its important new ways of understanding money, taxes, and the critical role of deficit spending, MMT redefines how to responsibly use our resources so that we can maximize our potential as a society. MMT gives us the power to imagine a new politics and a new economy and move from a narrative of scarcity to one of opportunity.
Thanks, Jeff for pointing out this article by Tim Robinson, and thank you, Sam, for the commentary.
Sam, you stated that the government has no assets of its own. I’ve often seen this mentioned, and I have some open questions about the proposition.
Should we think of a corporation as having no assets of its own? And if we think of a company providing soft drinks as having assets, why not think of government providing defense as having assets?
The Swedish power company Vattenfall is owned by that government: should we think of it as a government asset?
The federal lands in the US are owned by the government: shouldn’t we regard those as government assets?
It would seem sensible offhand to think of the government of the Soviet Union as having its own assets, such as what the Russian government sold off after the collapse of the Union.
If you or anyone else here have any thoughts on these questions, I’d like to know them, however tenative.