Who wins the stupidity wars? Friday, Apr 3 2020 

Who wins the stupidity wars?

RUNNER STUPIDITY.png

And the winner is . . .

We’ve grown accustomed to Trump’s idiocies — his claim that he will replace Obamacare with “something great” (though he had no plan and still doesn’t), and that he “saved pre-Existing conditions in your healthcare” (while he goes to court to destroy the very program that offers coverage for pre-existing conditions).

OK, so that’s the Trump/FoxNews/BreitbartNews “Say stupid” system for eliminating any credibility the conservative movement once had.

Lately, amidst all the daily lies coming from the right, we had Georgia Governor Brian Kemp claiming on April 1, “. . . we didn’t know until the last 24 hours”  that people can be asymptomatic throughout the (COVID-19) disease and still spread it.”

(Fortunately, stupidity itself can be spread only when people are symptomatic.)

Sen. Blackburn — no genius

And now, we have Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), whose latest contribution to right-wing stupidity is this:

Blackburn: China ‘Should Waive Some of Our Debt’ — ‘They Have Made a Global Pandemic Worse’

The United States owes nearly $1.08 trillion to Mainland China. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) argues China should consider waiving some of that debt given the communist nation’s role in the spread of the COVID-19/coronavirus.

The so-called federal “debt” is the total of deposits into Treasury Security Accounts held at the Federal Reserve Banks. This is China’s money, held by the U.S. government for safekeeping, at the direction of China.

Is Sen. Blackburn really suggesting that China give the U.S. government a few billion dollars? Does she not know that the U.S. government, being Monetarily Sovereign, has the unlimited ability to create dollars.

Does she not realize that China. like the U.S., is Monetarily Sovereign, so it too has the unlimited ability to create its own sovereign currency, which it can exchange for all the dollars it needs.

For China to give U.S. dollars to the U.S. federal government would be like you pouring a 1/100th thimbleful of water into the Pacific Ocean. It wouldn’t punish you and it wouldn’t reward the Pacific Ocean.

“One of the things is my Senate Resolution 553, which it expresses the sense of the Senate — that we know this came from Wuhan, China, and that they hid the information and were not transparent, that they blocked the World Health Organization and the CDC from coming into help.

“They tried to blame it on the U.S. military. And we hold them accountable.”

Clearly, Sen. Blackburn does not understand the irony of her statement.

It was her peerless leader, Donald J. Trump, who “hid the information and was not transparent,” and it is was Donald J. Trump who fired the U.S. pandemic response team in 2018.

And after first denying that there has been a slow response to the virus, Trump now blames impeachment for the slow response to coronavirus.

Perfect . . . as perfect as Trump’s famous phone call.

“I will tell you I think we need to look at the fact that China owns over a trillion dollars of our debt,” she said. “They like investing in us. Why do they like that? Because we are a safe debt for them — a safe place for them to put their money.

And knowing that they have made a global pandemic worse than it ever would have been because of their action — they should waive some of our debt.

They have caused us a tremendous amount of loss of life, loss of businesses, suffering, inconvenience, shutting down our economy.”

Yes, T-deposits are a safe place to put their U.S. money; safety is one reason why the U.S. provides for the deposits. That safety helps stabilize the dollar, which benefits us.

But, if Sen. Blackburn wants China (unnecessarily) to give the U.S. government some U.S. dollars, what does that have to do with the deposits?

China could (unnecessarily) send a billion, or even a trillion U.S. dollars to the U.S. government, just by pressing a computer key. This has zero relevance for the so-called “debt.”

Another component the Tennessee Republican argued for on the accountability front was to bring elements of manufacturing back from China to the United States.

“These are all things that we should take into consideration — bringing our manufacturing back, not only our pharmaceutical manufacturing — I was working with one of my colleagues today,” Blackburn explained. “There are other things we can bring back and put America back in the manufacturing business.”

“I told the Vice President the other night — I said, ‘Look, we should take my bill and some others that are focused on manufacturing and call it the MAMA Act — Make America Manufacture Again,’” she said. “And bring these jobs back to U.S. shores.”

And the purpose of “putting America back in the manufacturing business” is to what?

To increase our consumer prices, by forcing Americans to pay more for goods?

Or, to send U.S. dollars to a U.S. government that doesn’t need dollars?

Or, switch America to more manufacturing employment, which is far more vulnerable to pandemics than, for instance, online businesses?

We have borrowed $2 trillion to stabilize our economy.

China will turn around and buy that debt. They’ll buy that. That’s where they’ll park their money. They’ll buy those bonds. They’re going to end up enriching themselves through a problem that they caused.”

First, “we” (the federal government) didn’t borrow anything. We accepted deposits. We don’t need the dollars. We create all we need at the touch of a computer key.

Second, China parks their dollars there, as a safe, trading convenience. It’s good for us and it’s good for them. It helps stabilize the U.S. dollar.

Third, those deposits do not “enrich” China.

So Sen. Blackburn’s entire argument is a ballad to ignorance. She has absolutely no idea about how federal finances work, apparently believing they are like personal finances.

About the only thing I can say in defense of yet another bit of conservative obtuseness is that the liberals can be, and often are, stupid, too.

It’s just that beginning with “Dubya” Bush, and now Trump leading the conservative team, they have a huge, unfair advantage in the stupidity wars.

Because Trump says something stupid almost every day, we need to refresh our memories,  with this, this, this, this, and this. In the stupidity wars, Trump is the big gorilla  — the dumb one.

And then, if you add the conservatives’ dumb bigotry against everyone who is not a native-born, American, white, Christian, old male, having native-born, American, white, Christian parents, there really is no contest.

Conservatives win by a parsec.

And hey, who needs Medicare for All, anyway?

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty
Twitter: @rodgermitchell
Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

THE SOLE PURPOSE OF GOVERNMENT IS TO IMPROVE AND PROTECT THE LIVES OF THE PEOPLE.

The most important problems in economics involve:

  1. Monetary Sovereignty describes money creation and destruction.
  2. Gap Psychology describes the common desire to distance oneself from those “below” in any socio-economic ranking, and to come nearer those “above.” The socio-economic distance is referred to as “The Gap.”

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of Monetary Sovereignty and The Ten Steps To Prosperity can grow the economy and narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%”) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The Ten Steps will grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

How Trump reacts to the first crisis of his administration by “Making America Great Again” Friday, Mar 20 2020 

And here you thought that a frequently bankrupt TV actor, surrounded by incompetent and crooked friends, who has a serious allergy to the truth, would not be up to the task, when a crisis arrived.

Well, the crisis has arrived, and weren’t you the surprised one.

Here is what Ryan Cooper of THE WEEK said:

The United States has faceplanted on every single aspect of the response.

Our health care system is a bitter joke. We do not even have universal coverage, and what coverage we have is a usurious, fragmented, Kafkaesque nightmare that routinely bankrupts people who get sick.Image result for big lie

Part of the problem is that the conservatives have been promulgating the Big Lie that Medicare, and especially Medicare for All, is some sort of socialist plot.

And the populace which, understandably is clueless about federal financing, believe the lie, so they vote against their own best interests.

Heaven forbid that a Monetarily Sovereign government, having unlimited access to money without levying taxes, should fund health care for all the men, women, and children in America.

Better to build a useless Wall against much-needed Mexican immigrants (See: Mulvaney says US ‘desperate’ for legal immigrants to boost economy) than to fight a deadly disease, according to Donald “We’re not a shipping clerk” Trump.

By making legal immigration so difficult, Trump has set the economy up for failure.

Continuing with excerpts from Cooper’s article:

President Trump’s direct response has also been horrifically bungled.

We still do not have enough tests at least two months after we should have had them. He has not secured supplies of vital equipment like masks and ventilators, and hospitals are already running short.

He did not even start activating the Army Corps of Engineers until a couple days ago.

Hospital ships that Trump boasted were on their way turned out to be docked for maintenance and will take days to get moving.

An economic support measure (which contains some emergency paid leave and unemployment insurance provisions that are worse than what most European countries have in normal times) is bogged down in Congress.

And keep in mind that most of the European governments are monetarily non-sovereign, meaning they do not have unlimited access to money, and so must pay for everything out of taxes.

Yet somehow, they manage to spend more to benefit their citizens than does the U.S. government.

Perhaps worst of all, Trump, Republican politicians, and right-wing media consistently downplayed the epidemic for weeks as it gathered strength.

As the virus quietly spread through the population, Trump was still claiming “The coronavirus is very much under control in the USA,” and conservative media was claiming it was no worse than the flu.

Just in the last few days, Republican hack propagandists like Sean Hannity have pivoted on a dime from “I see it, again, as like, let’s bludgeon Trump with this new hoax,” to “this program has always taken the coronavirus seriously. We’ve never called the virus a hoax.”

The only people surprised by Donald (18,000 lies) Trump’s repeated misstatements are the Fox News addicts, who also believe what truly evil men like Sean (forked tongue) Hannity, and Russ “the coronavirus is the common cold” Limbaugh tell them.

At any rate, this all suggests the sketch of a broad policy agenda to fix this outbreak and head off future ones.

First, the wretched American health care system needs to be sharply augmented on an emergency basis and eventually replaced with something that actually works, like Medicare-for-all.

This is Step 2. of the Ten Steps to Prosperity: Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone

There are zero reasons for not doing this. The four false reasons are:

–It would increase the federal deficit and debt, which as readers of this blog know, are false reasons because the federal government can support any size deficit and debt, even without collecting taxes.

-Federal spending would cause inflation, which is false because federal spending never causes inflation (not even in Zimbabwe or in the Weimar Republic). Inflation always is caused by shortages, usually shortages of food and/or oil.

–It’s socialist. This one may be the most ignorant of all. It’s the same objection that was leveled at the original Medicare. First, socialism is federal ownership and control over resources. Medicare for all would be funding, not ownership and control. And if you don’t like federal funding, then close down the government, for that is all the government does: Fund things. That’s the whole purpose of government.

–There would be long waits for medical services. The people who say this are merely saying that they want poor people to do without medical services. If the money is available, the services will be created.

Medicare for All should be implemented now, today, simply by lowering the age requirement. That is how to “make America great again,” not by wall-building.

Second, the federal government is in shambles and needs a total overhaul. To start with, we should copy Taiwan’s pandemic systems so that response teams and supplies are always ready to go on a moment’s notice.

More broadly, state capacity, which has been gutted by decades of conservative austerity, anti-science, and anti-expertise dogmatism, must be rebuilt across the board.

Conservatives have insisted for decades that the government is all but useless, and today we are all paying the price.

Third, Trump should be turned out of office and the conservative movement should be comprehensively defeated politically.

It turns out there are some serious downsides to having a narcissistic reality TV host in charge of the country.

Oh, he’s not just a narcissistic reality TV host. He’s much less than that. Here is what he really is.

In summary, rather than MAGA, our Hitler wanna-be is doing everything he can to turn America into a backward banana republic, ruled by incompetent criminals and family members, and led by a ruthless, lying psychopath (Yes, Trump really is a psychopath. He flunks the Hare Psychopathy Checklist-Revised, which is used to diagnose the presence of psychopathy).

But the people most at fault are not the criminals, incompetents, and family members. The people most at fault are Trump’s followers, who despite all the evidence smacking them in the face, continually excuse his every act of evil.

As Trump himself bragged, they even would excuse him if he shot someone on 5th Ave.

Why?

In Hitler’s case, the Germans had been beaten during WWI, and were being punished financially by the allies. Germans, angrily licking their wounds, desperately needed two things: Scapegoats and a leader who would punish the scapegoats.

So along came Hilter who appealed to their fear, anger, and bigotry by promising to punish the scapegoats (Jews), and to make Germany great, again.

In America, the adult white population was resentful of the Mexicans, other people of color, foreigners, and the poor, who were “being given preference for everything” and who were going to be “running the country.”

So along came Trump, who promised to punish those minorities and aliens, who were being “given preference.”

He appealed to the pent-up bigotry of the “religious” whites, and now, despite his obvious failings, hatred has overcome reason, which has led to this incredible statistic:

An ABC News/Ipsos poll released Friday reports that 55 percent of respondents approve of Trump’s management of the public health crisis, while 43 percent disapprove.

The latest figures represent a boost in the president’s rating from the previous iteration of the survey, published one week ago, which showed only 43 percent approval for Trump and 54 percent disapproval.

And this brings us to the famous quote by H.L Mencken:

“No one in this world, so far as I know — and I have searched the records for years, and employed agents to help me — has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people.

“Nor has anyone ever lost public office thereby.”Image result for trump as pied piper

And now, the great masses of plain people, will suffer and suffer and suffer, because they have allowed their fears and hatreds to overcome their eyes, and ears, and common sense, and ignorantly follow the Pied Piper to their doom.

Ignorance has its penalties

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty
Twitter: @rodgermitchell
Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

THE SOLE PURPOSE OF GOVERNMENT IS TO IMPROVE AND PROTECT THE LIVES OF THE PEOPLE.

The most important problems in economics involve:

  1. Monetary Sovereignty describes money creation and destruction.
  2. Gap Psychology describes the common desire to distance oneself from those “below” in any socio-economic ranking, and to come nearer those “above.” The socio-economic distance is referred to as “The Gap.”

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of Monetary Sovereignty and The Ten Steps To Prosperity can grow the economy and narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%”) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The Ten Steps will grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

Which party will be remembered as “the party of too-little, too-late”? Wednesday, Mar 18 2020 

Before the virus crisis, the 2020 federal budget looked like this:

BUDGET PROJECTIONS FOR FY 2020

(As of  )

OUTLAYS

$4.6 Trillion

REVENUES

$3.6 Trillion

DEFICIT

$1.0 Trillion

DEBT HELD BY THE PUBLIC (End of Fiscal Year)

$17.9 Trillion

We were here:

Trump says coronavirus is ‘under control’ despite warnings from health officials of ‘severe’ disruptions
Courtney Subramanian, John Fritze USA TODAY 2/25/2020

NEW DELHI – President Donald Trump and White House officials downplayed coronavirus concerns Tuesday, describing the epidemic as “very well under control in our country” despite a sharp increase in cases globally and warnings of “severe” disruptions.

Speaking to reporters in India, where he was taking part in a state visit, Trump noted that few people have been diagnosed with the virus in the U.S. and claimed that the “whole situation will start working out.”

But markets tumbled hours later as health officials warned of a more extensive impact in the United States.

“Disruption to everyday life may be severe,” said Nancy Messonnier, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. Schools could be closed, public gatherings suspended and employees forced to work remotely, she said.

And here:

Schumer counters Trump, announces $8.5-billion proposal for emergency coronavirus funding
Nicholas Wu, 2/26/20 USA TODAY
WASHINGTON — Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., released an $8.5 billion counter-proposal to the Trump administration’s request for emergency coronavirus funding.

“This proposal brings desperately-needed resources to the global fight against coronavirus,” Schumer said in a statement. “Americans need to know that their government is prepared to handle the situation before coronavirus spreads to our communities. I urge the Congress to move quickly on this proposal. Time is of the essence.”

The Trump administration requested $2.5 billion Monday to tackle the virus, an amount Democrats deemed insufficient. According to Schumer’s office, Congress appropriated $6 billion for the 2006 avian flu, and $7 billion for the H1N1 flu in 2009.

Testifying before a subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee on Wednesday, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar defended the administration’s request, saying the amount was “appropriate, and if not, if it doesn’t fund it enough, we’ll come back to you and work with you.”

Now, we are here:

Trump’s coronavirus rescue package could approach a trillion dollars
PA Media: World News
By Lisa Mascaro and Zeke Miller, Associated Press
PA Media: World News, 18 March 2020

Donald Trump has asked Congress to speed emergency cheques to Americans, enlisted the military for hospitals and implored ordinary people to do their part by staying home to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

In a massive federal effort, the president’s proposed economic package alone could approach a trillion dollars, a rescue initiative not seen since the Great Recession.

He wants cheques sent to the public within two weeks and is urging Congress to pass the stimulus package in a matter of days.

As analysts warn the country is entering a recession, the government is grappling with an enormous political undertaking with echoes of the 2008 financial crisis.

At the Capitol on Tuesday, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell vowed the Senate would not adjourn until the work was done.

“Obviously, we need to act,” he said. “We’re not leaving town until we have constructed and passed another bill.”

He said the Senate will vote on a House-passed package of sick pay, emergency food and free testing, putting it back on track for Mr Trump’s signature — despite Republican objections.

Overnight, the White House sent legislators a 46 billion dollar emergency funding request to boost medical care for military service members and veterans, fund production of vaccines and medicines, build 13 quarantine centres at the southern border for migrants and make federal buildings safer, among other measures.

The Trump request also reverses cuts to the Centres for Disease Control and National Institutes of Health that Trump proposed in his February budget for next year and would create a 3 billion dollar fund for unanticipated needs.

Bigger than the 700 billion dollar 2008 bank bailout or the nearly 800 billion dollar 2009 recovery act, the White House proposal aims to provide a massive tax cut for wage-earners, 50 billion dollars for the airline industry and 250 billion dollars for small businesses.

“This is a very unique situation,” said Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin, exiting a private briefing of Senate Republicans. “We’ve put a proposal on that table that would attract a trillion dollars into the economy.”

And it still is nowhere near enough.

Consider just Steps 2. and 3. of the Ten Steps to Prosperity.

Step 2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone. Sanders’ “Medicare for all” proposal has been estimated to cost $1.38 trillion per year. Other health policy experts have put the single-payer health plan price tag much higher, with price tags ranging from $2.4 trillion a year to $2.8 trillion a year.

Step 3. The cost of Social Security for all would depend on how many people receive it, and how much each person receives. Current SS costs about $1 trillion which is doled out to about 61 million people. There are about 212 million people over 21 in the U.S., so giving all of them the same SS amount would require about $3.5 trillion.

Then add in the remaining Steps and the total easily could exceed $7 trillion. Yet, the 10 Steps are needed to prevent/cure recessions and depressions while improving the lives of Americans. In “Trumpese,” the 10 Steps can “make America great, again.”

Two questions:

  1. Can the federal government afford the Ten Steps?
  2. Would implementation cause inflation?

1. Can the Monetarily Sovereign federal government afford $3 trillion – $7 trillion to give Americans prosperity?

Alan Greenspan: “A government cannot become insolvent with respect to obligations in its own currency.”
Ben Bernanke: “The U.S. government has a technology, called a printing press (or, today, its electronic equivalent), that allows it to produce as many U.S. dollars as it wishes at essentially no cost.”
St. Louis Federal Reserve: “As the sole manufacturer of dollars, whose debt is denominated in dollars, the U.S. government can never become insolvent, i.e., unable to pay its bills. In this sense, the government is not dependent on credit markets to remain operational.”

Perhaps, the real question should be: Can the private sector (you and me) afford to continue paying trillions, and still not receive what the Ten Steps could offer?

Today, the private sector pays or does without. That is how these services are funded. The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, has unlimited financial resources. The private sector does not. Question answered.

2. Would it cause inflation? Contrary to popular wisdom, federal deficit spending does not, and has not, caused inflation. Inflation is caused by shortages, usually shortages of food and/or energy. See: Only 450 words answer the question, “Does printing money cause inflation?”

Why then doesn’t Congress budget spending the money?

I suspect the primary answer is: They want to add just enough dollars to prevent a depression, which would tempt voters to throw them out of their cushy jobs — but still stick the public with a mild recession. In short, Gap Psychology rules.

(Gap Psychology is the desire to distance oneself from those considered “below” you in any socioeconomic ranking, and to come closer to those above.)

The richer do not want the less rich to prosper. They resent aid to poorer people who are felt to be “lazy takers.” It is Gap Psychology that demands those receiving aid to seek employment, though there is no financial reason for this.

In Summary: We are in a perilous situation that can lead to many deaths and a financial disaster, perhaps a full-fledged, long-lasting depression.

Both the health and the financial problems can be cured with ample inputs of money, which the federal government can provide at no cost to anyone.

Which political party will be remembered as the “too-little, too-late party”?

For no good reasons, the government drags its feet. With every passing day of inaction or inadequate action, more people will suffer. Who is at fault?

Only the rich will thrive. And that seems to be the point.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty
Twitter: @rodgermitchell
Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

THE SOLE PURPOSE OF GOVERNMENT IS TO IMPROVE AND PROTECT THE LIVES OF THE PEOPLE.

The most important problems in economics involve:

  1. Monetary Sovereignty describes money creation and destruction.
  2. Gap Psychology describes the common desire to distance oneself from those “below” in any socio-economic ranking, and to come nearer those “above.” The socio-economic distance is referred to as “The Gap.”

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

Implementation of Monetary Sovereignty and The Ten Steps To Prosperity can grow the economy and narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%”) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The Ten Steps will grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

The Ten Steps to Prosperity. How we can recover and grow from here. Monday, Mar 16 2020 

America is sick.

The Trump administration, built on lies and bigotry, changed us from that Reaganesque vision of a, “shining city upon a hill,” to a walled-in, back alley filled with spite, hatred, cruelty, incompetence, and corruption.

And now, the coronavirus, which despite (or because of) Trump’s meandering attempts first to ignore and then to downplay it, has become the knife to the heart of America’s economy.

Today, while most nations struggle furiously to minimize the adverse medical and financial effects of the pandemic, America’s leader struggles furiously to minimize the political effects on himself.

“The people be damned, so long as I get elected in November” is the overriding criterion, and that is why Trump runs a “too little, too late” administration.

Our many problems require many solutions, but they all coalesce into two words: Leadership and Money.

For Leadership, we have Donald Trump, the Republican Party, and the right-wing media — in short, none. Trump’s focus begins and ends with himself and what will be good or bad for his continuing in power.

When right-wing hero and information source, Rush Limbaugh said, “ . . . this virus is the common cold,” he expressed the anti-science ignorance of his mindless followers.

Fox & Friends Ainsley Earhardt told us this is “the safest time to fly.” Fox Business’s Trish Regan reported that the virus is a “scam” to “impeach the president.”

The Atlantic’s McKay Coppins summarized today’s conservative message: “Pay no attention to the fake-news fear-mongering about the coronavirus. It’s all political hype. Things are going great.

The Republican Party is one huge toady, an oily, bootlicking group that has surrendered all its morality, all its functions, and all its power to a proven psychopath (See: A psychopath slipped into the White House . . .).

America would not notice if every Republican in Congress merely stayed asleep in bed and allowed a machine to cast their “Whatever Trump wants” votes. Nothing would change.

With no Leadership to save us, we are left to rely on Money, and here we must pray for common ground between Trump and the Democrats.

The first step is to remove from the dialog any voice for those of Libertarian bent, the folks whose knee-jerk response to any situation is to call for reduced government and reduced government spending. They believe any level of each, no matter how trivial, is too much.

Solving America’s economic problems by cutting government and government spending would be like trying to win a war by eliminating soldiers and equipment.

The Libertarian notion that the federal deficit and debt are “unsustainable” is divorced from reality and ignorant of federal financing and federal deficit spending, which has “sustained” a 50,000% increase over the past eighty years.

Two hundred and forty years ago, American’s Monetarily Sovereign government created from thin air the first laws that created its sovereign currency, and arbitrarily through the years, gave that currency varying values. Today, America’s government continues to own absolute control over the supply and value of the dollar.

Though the government does not always use that unlimited power to create dollars and to control their value, as witness the unnecessary collection of federal taxes, and occasional inflations, the power remains available, like a sheathed sword.

In short, the federal government simply cannot run short of dollars, and it can set the value of the dollar at any level it chooses.

The sole question, with regard to our current crises, is: How shall these unlimited powers best be used?

In searching for a direction, we might look to Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), a philosophy that well understands the federal government’s abovementioned powers.

Sadly though, MMT was founded on, and still remains dedicated to the dual goals, “Full employment and stable currency,” neither of which addresses today’s crises.

From MMT’s standpoint, “mission accomplished.” We already have both full employment and a stable currency — have had them for several years.  Further, any “full employment” goal would be achieved by a “government-as-employment-agency,” a concept that is stunning in its ivory-tower innocence.  (See: How the MMT “Jobs Guarantee” ignores humanity and MMT’s “Jobs Guarantee”: The final nail in the coffin of this naive, foolish program.)

By contrast, MS is dedicated to the dual goals, grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.

Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.

To grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest, MS proposes the implementation of the Ten Steps to Prosperity.

Here are links to descriptions of each Step.

The Ten Steps To Prosperity:

1. Eliminate FICA

2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone

3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)

4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone

5. Salary for attending school

6. Eliminate federal taxes on business

7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually. 

8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%”) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.

9. Federal ownership of all banks

10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9% 

The sole purpose of government is to improve and protect the lives of the people. The Ten Steps will help accomplish the dual goals of growing the economy and narrowing the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.

Step 1. Eliminate FICA. This step is first because it not only is easily implemented — simply stop collecting this useless, regressive tax — but also because it instantly would begin to add growth dollars to the economy and to the pockets of working (and spending) people. It could be done, today.

Step 2. Federally funded Medicare would address the medical and financial tragedies that will be visited upon the American populace. The deleterious effects of the virus will be physically and financially long-lasting.

Step 3. Social Security for all would address the massive financial impact the virus will have on the American people. It is a way to pump regular infusions of money into a starving economy. It is a controlled version of “helicopter money.

Steps 4. and 5. Pay for education. Clearly,  America needs more medical personnel and others in the sciences associated not just with health, but every human area touched by science. Ironically, the man who preaches “MAGA” is anti-science, and does not understand that science leadership is necessary to make a nation great.

Step 6. Eliminate federal taxes on business. Under ordinary circumstances, this always would benefit the economy, but today the government needs to go further and directly support the industries that have been hit hardest and are most vital. Transportation and food service are notable examples.

Steps 7 and 8. Increase the standard deduction and tax the highest income groups more. Increasing the standard deduction already has begun. It should continue, year after year, until only the very highest income groups are taxed. The federal government has no need for, nor use of, tax income. It creates new dollars, ad hoc, to pay its bills. Federal tax dollars are destroyed upon receipt (See: Federal tax dollars are destroyed).

Step 9. Federal ownership of all banks. In addition to eliminating the rampant and ongoing criminality of the banking industry, this step would solidify government controls over the money supply, interest rates, and inflation. Private ownership of banks offers no social, financial, or economic benefit to the public.

Step 10. General. This can include the many initiatives that would help achieve the twin goals of growing the economy and narrowing the Gap, i.e. improving and protecting the lives of the people. Examples:

A. Free “Meals on Wheels” to those who want them, rich or poor, old or young, sick or healthy.
B. Increased support for science.
C. Increased support for infrastructure.
D. Increased support for housing.
E. Specific to today’s medical crisis:

1. Fully paid sick leave for all Americans
2. Debt relief for those impacted by the virus
3. Massive “Manhattan Project” approach to finding treatments and cures for all communicable diseases. (See: Manhattan Project)

All of the above would improve the lives of the American people. Although they would be costly, there would be no cost to the American people. The federal government, which has infinite money and infinite control over the value of the dollar, could fund them all without collect one extra penny in taxes.

In summary, a vast number of our ailments can be addressed with federal government money, which is free and infinite. We must not let those who are ignorant about federal finances continue to build roadblocks to the improvement of American lives.

The most important problems in economics involve:

  1. Monetary Sovereignty describes money creation and destruction.
  2. Gap Psychology describes the common desire to distance oneself from those “below” in any socio-economic ranking, and to come nearer those “above.” The socio-economic distance is referred to as “The Gap.”

We must spend the money to lift us, and we must narrow the Gap to lift us all.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty
Twitter: @rodgermitchell
Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

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