–Some blowback from MMT

Mitchell’s laws:
●The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes.
●Austerity is the government’s method for widening the gap between rich and poor,
which leads to civil disorder.
●Cutting the deficit is the government’s method for taking dollars from the middle class and giving them to the rich.
●Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.
●To survive long term, a monetarily non-sovereign government must have a positive balance of payments.
●Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.

●The penalty for ignorance is slavery.

As expected, I’ve received some blowback from MMTers regarding my article titled, “Why MMT frustrates the hell out of me.”

One person told me we really are winning, because “Complete strangers . . . have heard about the coin idea. You can’t expect an economic revolution to happen overnight.” (Overnight? I’ve been at this 15 years. Others, even longer. And now we’re “winning,” as Congress debates deficit cutting, because strangers have heard of the Platinum Coin Solution? Yikes!)

Another person thinks “the anger/expression needs to be reined in, moderate anger is supposed to be more convincing.” (Reined in from what?)

Yet another person told me I’m “emphasizing the power of mass communications too much. The 0.1% have great influence over that alright; but the informal communications networks belong to the people; and it’s been shown time and again that they are more powerful than the media at shaping attitudes.”

As for the great power of informal communications, here are a couple recent editorials from the Chicago Tribune, circulation 425,000:

Harvesting the fiscal cliff

Taxpayers, beware: Farm-state lawmakers want a $1 trillion farm bill packed with giveaways as their price for going along with an agreement on tax increases and spending cuts to curb federal deficit growth. If they get their way, it’ll be a strong signal that Congress is intent only on pushing off today’s cliff crisis, not on real fiscal reform.

Food stamp costs—particularly the abuse of food stamps—need to be curbed.

The “power of informal communications” is so great, the Tribune no longer feels the need even to explain why deficits should be cut. They know the message already is so deeply implanted into the public’s brain, all that is needed is a couple words of outrage about “abuse of food stamps” (a benefit for the poor) and “federal debt growth.”

If we are winning, what the heck is losing?

Then, another editorial:

Balance, Mr. President
Where’s the focus on spending cuts?

President Obama has a golden chance to begin reform of entitlement programs headed for insolvency.

Last Wednesday, in an editorial titled “Democrats, your turn — Commit to spending cuts,” we urged Team Obama to acknowledge that the growth in domestic spending and entitlements has to diminish.

But the president’s reaction, delivered by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, is to cut total spending by a meager $400 million over 10 years while raising a net $1.6 trillion in new taxes. Obama also proposes tens of billions in spending on stimulus projects and continuance of long-term unemployment insurance and the supposedly temporary payroll tax cut.

How outrageous. To stimulate our moribund economy, continue unemployment insurance for the millions of destitute unemployed, and not increase the worst tax in U.S. history: FICA. Isn’t that just ridiculous?

It would seem ridiculous to a newspaper owned by the .1%, whose primary economic goal is to drive down the middle and lower classes.

But continuing:

Politico reported Monday that a poll for a moderate Democratic think tank, Third Way, found 85 percent of Obama voters favoring higher taxes on the wealthy.

Get it, MMT? Americans are pre-disposed to blame the rich. So what do you do? Explain economics, without a word about blaming the rich. You don’t use the single most powerful weapon in your arsenal: Dislike of the ruling class.

Americans also see, courtesy of a Europe wallowing in recession and government debt, the consequences of runaway entitlements.

See, it isn’t austerity that has “Europe wallowing in recession,” it’s all those entitlements given to you poor, unworthy people. You really should sacrifice more, so we rich can live better.

Mr. President, we expect you not to provoke more discord, but to lead a rescue mission — reform of Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid included.

Translation: Don’t “provoke discord” by upsetting the rich. Instead, take more money from the middle and lower classes.

It truly is disgusting at how MMT buries its heads in the sand, and refuses to acknowledge that:

1. The Chicago Tribune is just one medium among thousands, virtually all of which daily bombard millions upon millions of people with the .1%’s message: The deficit is too high, and federal spending must be cut, and the real problem is the middle and lower classes are getting too much.

2. The only way to counter the overwhelming volume of misinformation, from newspapers, TV, radio, magazine, political and mainstream economists, is to point the finger at the perpetrators.

Tell the people they are being screwed and who is screwing them. The people need to rise up in anger.

Heck, even AARP tells its members that Social Security will go broke. When you’re outgunned (and we are massively outgunned), you have to focus on the enemy’s weakness, in this case, the enemy’s weakness is the natural antipathy of the 99.9% for the .1%.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty


Nine Steps to Prosperity:
1. Eliminate FICA (Click here)
2. Medicare — parts A, B & D — for everyone
3. Send every American citizen an annual check for $5,000 or give every state $5,000 per capita (Click here)
4. Long-term nursing care for everyone
5. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone
6. Salary for attending school (Click here)
7. Eliminate corporate taxes
8. Increase the standard income tax deduction annually
9. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99%

No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth. Monetary Sovereignty: Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia. Two key equations in economics:
Federal Deficits – Net Imports = Net Private Savings
Gross Domestic Product = Federal Spending + Private Investment and Consumption – Net Imports


6 thoughts on “–Some blowback from MMT

  1. Thanks for the (partial) quote!

    What I said was that some have been criticised for being too aggressive, I’d add too personal and playing players not the ball…I found the whole MMT/MR “dispute” a real turn off and it’s frankly boring when people attack eachother rather than discuss the issues.

    I’m in the UK,( that’s my context/style, I live in an economic wasteland, the poverty of public debate/knowledge is depressingly appaling), so that certainly explains some of my difficulty with over the top advocacy, not that I’m above that myself, but if one raves and foams at the mouth too much, one’s likely to be taken for an out of control fool/extremist…express the anger but make sure it’s channelled at the issues, the devastating waste, cruelty, sadism, economic vandalism of mass un/der-employment inflicted on the 100-n% many by the n% few.

    If you haven’t read the Ragged Trousered Philanthropist, please do…it’s like we’re heading back to that so-called “guilded” age…guilded for them on the back of our ‘generosity’.


    1. Will Richardson says: “If one raves and foams at the mouth too much, one is likely to be taken for an out of control fool / extremist.”

      Is that what you think Rodger does? I’m just curious.

      For most MMT people, honestly and plain speaking (no matter how courteous) constitutes “raving and foaming at the mouth.” Most MMT people in their blogs prefer to speak in a lame, effete, insular, boring, and abstruse style.

      Regarding British culture and “over-the-top advocacy,” isn’t that what the British government and City of London indulge in when they prattle on about the “war on terror” and the supposed need for austerity?

      If we calmly but candidly explain why these people are liars and hysterical extremists, are we then “”raving and foaming at the mouth”?

      Just sayin’.


      1. As I said in my response above, I actually live in the UK. I have a daughter who is likely to come into the job market in a few years time and all Gordon (sic) Osterity (sic) Osborne can offer us is 6 more years of the same tired failed damaging policies. We live in an ideological wasteland and even my dyed in the wool Tory father can see that there are worries that we get dragged back into 1930s (or in the UK case 1920s general strike etc) with the centre, the real one, that is, not holding and the extremists completing their takeover of the asylum.

        On the odd occasion I’d read RMM as having a rant…personally I’m in a pretty much permanent state of incandescent rage…I can rant and swear royally/plebeianly about things, particularly with those closest to me…generating anger at the injustice is certainly part of the Union toolkit, then moving on to hope and the prospect of real genuine reform that actually improves things, rather than being a euphemism for grinding workers pay and working conditions into the dust a la our current round of Civil Service “Reforms” a twising of the word that is Orwellian in it’s outrageous Big Lie double think.

        As I said above, we should avoid personalising as this distracts and deflects from the real issues and doesn’t do us any favours or persuade people of our cause.

        As for the war on terror, that’s a US policy that our lap-dog politicians have obediently parroted.

        Obviously the answer to your rhetorical question at the end is that firmly and forcefully arguing the point is fine.


  2. One MMT clown says, “It is more powerful to be nice than to rant about thieving lying SOBs.”

    Nonsense. Is simply being honest a “rant”? In their ivory towers, MMT people fancy themselves “above” the “rants.” Hence they are “above” honesty and plain speech.

    MMT morons claim that the 1% and their puppet politicians are simply “misguided.” Who is “misguiding” the 1% and politicians? The MMT people never say. They insult us when they claim that the ultra-rich simply “misunderstand” government finances and macroeconomics.

    MMT morons claim to care about austerity, but their deliberately abstruse writing shows that they do not. Many disagree with Paul Krugman’s absurd “deficit dove” approach, yet they revere Krugman anyway.

    Regarding the articles that Rodger cites, a Chicago Tribune editorial claims that, “Food stamp costs—particularly the abuse of food stamps—need to be curbed.”

    This is absolute garbage with real-world consequences for Americans, but the MMT people do not think it merits an angry response.

    First of all, the government creates the money by spending. Hence the food stamp program “costs” nothing. Not one single penny comes out of anyone’s pocket. Ever. Second, the food stamp program involves government spending of only $75 billion per year, which is less than one tenth of what the government spends on the military. Of that $75 billion, less than one half of one percent entails any kind of “abuse.” Third, since this “abuse” entails the changing of food stamps directly into money, it still constistutes an injection of money into the economy.

    Chicago Tribune editorials are full of lies and didtortions that cost people dearly. But the MMT types think that anger is not an appropriate response to these lies.

    The same Chicago Tribune editorial furthers says that, “The best way to deal with food stamp policy is to decouple it from farm policy, so these programs can be judged on their own merits. They belong in separate bills, handled by separate committees.”

    Translation: let’s get the food stamp program out in the open, so we can kill it.

    You 47 million Americans who depend on food stamps – your only protection (so far) is that the USDA is very secretive about its food stamp program, and very protective of it. Amid the current depression, you would literally starve without the USDA. The Chicago Tribune says that when the government spends to keep you from death, this is “unnecessary spending.”

    But the MMT types think that anger is not an appropriate response to this.

    Rodger cites another Chicago Tribune editorial which says that, “Obama has a golden chance to begin reform of entitlement programs headed for insolvency.”

    “Reform” means cut. Yes, amid the current depression, people who depend on Medicare and SS should be forced to starve and die, just so the 1% can have a wider income gap.

    But the MMT types think that anger is not an appropriate response to this.

    The Tribune claims that, “Americans also see, courtesy of a Europe wallowing in recession and government debt, the consequences of runaway entitlements.”

    Absolute LIES!!!

    But the MMT types think that anger is not an appropriate response to this.

    Rodger says, “When you’re outgunned (and we are massively outgunned), you must focus on the enemy’s weakness. In this case, the enemy’s weakness is the natural antipathy of the 99.9% for the .1%.”

    Bingo. The public already wants to punish the rich via higher taxes on the rich. This is indeed misguided. And who is misguiding the public? The rich and their puppet politicians.

    (Rhetoric about taxing the rich is useless, since the rich pay no taxes anyway. Besides, the federal government does not need tax revenue from the rich. When politicians talk about raising taxes on the rich, the politicians mean “broadening the base,” i.e. raising taxes on the middle and lower classes, in order to increase the wealth / income gap. NO MMT PERSON WILL EVER MENTION THIS GAP.)

    We already have public wrath. Our challenge is to change the direction of that wrath.

    But the MMT types think that such a change is “misguided.”


  3. “Tell the people they are being screwed and who is screwing them. The people need to rise up in anger. ”
    Perhaps, MMTers need a David Axelrod, the man that has shown how a county can win a state and make a president. Such a man as the head of a PR Action Group to let their voice be heard-since for now there is more silence than sound.
    Please, may I ask again, Isn’t QE being used to screw the people and allowing the PFPB to make tremendous profits.
    Couldn’t QE be used to LOWER TAXES and INCREASE SPENDING and REDUCE DEBT- ALL at the same time?


  4. MMT desperately needs an advocate on one of the talking head stations. The “people” don’t read but they do parrot Rachel Maddow, or Hannity, or Huckabee, and all those semi-shills. MMT could use a good dose of mainstream publicity.


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