Bad news for MMT’s Job Guarantee Saturday, Oct 7 2017 

 

Image result for escaping the prison

 

It takes only two things to keep people in chains:
The ignorance of the oppressed
and the treachery of their leaders.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) is a close cousin to Monetary Sovereignty (MS), the theory espoused on this site.

Both recognize the fact that federal finances are unlike state and local government finances. The federal government uniquely has a sovereign currency, the dollar, which it can create endlessly. Thus, federal spending is not funded by taxes or borrowing.

Fundamentally, MMT and MS are identical, but one important detail concealed by the devil has to do with MMT’s “Job Guarantee” (JG).

We have discussed JG many times, and continue to do so, because MMTers claim it is one of the most important parts of MMT.

They even have established a Center for Full Employment and Price Stability at the University of Missouri, Kansas City.

Here are excerpts from an article in The Nation:

The Job Guarantee: A Government Plan for Full Employment
There is no economic demand more urgent than putting Americans back to work. The government can do this by creating an “employer of last resort” program.
The Nation, By L. Randall Wray, June 8, 2011

There is no economic policy more important than job creation.

JG is a scheme only a university economist could love.

The idea is this: A federal government bureaucrat will create (or find in the public sector; that never has been clear) a job for anyone who wants a minimum wage job.

MMT refers to such job seekers as “buffer stock” or a “pool of employable labor.”

To be part of “buffer stock” or the “pool”:

  1. You will accept any minimum wage job you are offered, wherever in America it may be.
  2. You are qualified for any minimum wage job you are offered.
  3. Or, a federal government bureaucrat has the ability to find you the minimum wage job you want, and for which you are qualified, in a location convenient to where you live (even if you live in a small town in rural America).
  4. You prefer to work a minimum wage job, rather than not work, because you find such labor to be more emotionally rewarding than not working. (This doesn’t apply to wealthy people, of course.)

The whole thing is based on the MMT economist’s belief that the primary goal of you “buffer stock,” “pool employables”  (sometimes known as “people”) is to labor, or if that isn’t your primary goal, it morally should be. Apparently, you cannot be happy unless you have some minimum wage job, somewhere.

If the MMT professors merely would open a window in their ivory tower, they might see this:

Why Can’t the Middle Class Find Good Jobs if There Are So Many Job Openings?
Money & Career Cheat Sheet, Sam Becker, October 07, 2017

Job vacancies and job openings are exactly what they sound like — open jobs waiting to be filled. These positions represent needs from employers, and as such, employers advertise them as jobs to be filled.

As mentioned, these openings are at the highest levels on record, which goes back to the year 2000 when the government started keeping track.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, show there are more than 6 million job vacancies in the U.S. economy.  Why are employers unwilling to dip into the pool of 6.9 million unemployed people?

The answer, it seems, is a “skills mismatch.”

What does that mean? Those unemployed Americans out there don’t have the required skills or experience to be successful in the open positions.

A more obvious issue is the fact that many employers are reluctant to pay workers more.

Labor, like any other commodity, is subject to the rules of the free market. When there’s a shortage (as there appears to be right now), prices go up. But businesses don’t want to increase spending, and as a result they are allowing positions to go unfilled.

It’s not merely a matter of not being able to find quality employees. It’s that businesses are reluctant to pay more for them.

Pause for a moment to consider what you have read: There are millions of jobs available, but unemployed Americans don’t have the the skills to do them and employers are reluctant to pay what applicants want.

This doesn’t mean no one in America can do the job. It means:

Convenient to this location, there are no people who know about the job, can do the job, or who want the job, or who want the pay the job offers.

There are five crucial faults — job location, job awareness, job ability, job desire, pay acceptance — that separate JG from reality.

If the unemployed are looked at as mere “buffer stock,” these may be non-issues, but if they are considered to be human beings, these are killer issues. MMT economists, with their charts and graphs, fail to understand that.

If you have millions of workers who don’t have the skills needed to fill your positions, one option is to train them. But that’s something fewer and fewer businesses are offering these days.

More jobs than ever require college degrees, and many entry-level positions expect you to come in with some sort of certification or experience. This, of course, is at odds with the “entry-level” designation.

The fulcrum point of all of this is many employers simply aren’t offering attractive enough compensation packages to get the people they want. Yes, there’s a skills gap out there. But even that can be solved with high enough incentives.

How does the above square with MMT’s desire to pay minimum wage? Of course, it doesn’t.

That brings us to another (issue): The South and Midwest are where the most open jobs are.

And it’s not just areas of  the nation. It’s not even which states have jobs. It’s not even which cities. It’s a question of transportation cost and time. Most people will not accept a job that is much more than an hour a way and/or costly to reach.

Someone living in a northern suburb of, for instance, Chicago, would not consider a job in most of the Chicago business area — especially for a minimum wage job. Too far away and too costly to reach.

When employers can’t get people to work for the wages they’re offering, what are they supposed to do? The answer is to offer higher wages — and keep raising them until people start to bite.

Or mechanize, so live employment is less necessary.  Machines are a tempting option: No absences, no complaints, no labor problems, no errors, no salaries, no benefits, no lunch breaks.

A lot of employers are willing to let the 6 million unfilled jobs sit there rather than offer higher wages to fill them. That is why we have a record number of job vacancies and why we have millions of unemployed people who aren’t interested, or, as employers say, aren’t qualified.

MMT’s view of people as eager pegs to be dropped into holes, is at odds with reality.

Image result for ditch digger

Do you want this minimum wage job?

And here is another reality: The future is not more working hours, but fewer.

The goal for most people is to be able to do what they want, when they want — to live a happy life.

For some, this means being productive. For others it means reading, vacationing, being healthy, having friends, raising children, etc.

To each his own.

MMT’s professors repeatedly have stated, “There is no economic policy more important than job creation.”  They are wrong. Slaves in the South were fully employed. They were not happy.

People want happy lives. Minimum wage jobs are not the road to happy lives. There’s an old line, “No one ever says, ‘I wish I had spent more time in the office.'” Working for money seldom is a goal. The real goal is money and what money can buy.

Ask any retired person.

Monetary Sovereignty says “The most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.”

While narrowing the Gap between the rich and the rest cannot be accomplished by JG’s minimum wage jobs, it can be accomplished, beginning with Monetary Sovereignty’s Ten Steps to Prosperity (below).

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

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

The most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

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 The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. ELIMINATE FICA (Ten Reasons to Eliminate FICA )
Although the article lists 10 reasons to eliminate FICA, there are two fundamental reasons:
*FICA is the most regressive tax in American history, widening the Gap by punishing the low and middle-income groups, while leaving the rich untouched, and
*The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, neither needs nor uses FICA to support Social Security and Medicare.
2. FEDERALLY FUNDED MEDICARE — PARTS A, B & D, PLUS LONG TERM CARE — FOR EVERYONE (H.R. 676, Medicare for All )
This article addresses the questions:
*Does the economy benefit when the rich can afford better health care than can the rest of Americans?
*Aside from improved health care, what are the other economic effects of “Medicare for everyone?”
*How much would it cost taxpayers?
*Who opposes it?”
3. PROVIDE A MONTHLY ECONOMIC BONUS TO EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN AMERICA (similar to Social Security for All) (The JG (Jobs Guarantee) vs the GI (Guaranteed Income) vs the EB (Economic Bonus)) Or institute a reverse income tax.
This article is the fifth in a series about direct financial assistance to Americans:

Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Employer of Last Resort is a bad idea. Sunday, Jan 1 2012
MMT’s Job Guarantee (JG) — “Another crazy, rightwing, Austrian nutjob?” Thursday, Jan 12 2012
Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Jobs Guarantee is like the EU’s euro: A beloved solution to the wrong problem. Tuesday, May 29 2012
“You can’t fire me. I’m on JG” Saturday, Jun 2 2012

Economic growth should include the “bottom” 99.9%, not just the .1%, the only question being, how best to accomplish that. Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) favors giving everyone a job. Monetary Sovereignty (MS) favors giving everyone money. The five articles describe the pros and cons of each approach.
4. FREE EDUCATION (INCLUDING POST-GRAD) FOR EVERYONE Five reasons why we should eliminate school loans
Monetarily non-sovereign State and local governments, despite their limited finances, support grades K-12. That level of education may have been sufficient for a largely agrarian economy, but not for our currently more technical economy that demands greater numbers of highly educated workers.
Because state and local funding is so limited, grades K-12 receive short shrift, especially those schools whose populations come from the lowest economic groups. And college is too costly for most families.
An educated populace benefits a nation, and benefitting the nation is the purpose of the federal government, which has the unlimited ability to pay for K-16 and beyond.
5. SALARY FOR ATTENDING SCHOOL
Even were schooling to be completely free, many young people cannot attend, because they and their families cannot afford to support non-workers. In a foundering boat, everyone needs to bail, and no one can take time off for study.
If a young person’s “job” is to learn and be productive, he/she should be paid to do that job, especially since that job is one of America’s most important.
6. ELIMINATE FEDERAL TAXES ON BUSINESS
Businesses are dollar-transferring machines. They transfer dollars from customers to employees, suppliers, shareholders and the federal government (the later having no use for those dollars). Any tax on businesses reduces the amount going to employees, suppliers and shareholders, which diminishes the economy. Ultimately, all business taxes reduce your personal income.
7. INCREASE THE STANDARD INCOME TAX DEDUCTION, ANNUALLY. (Refer to this.) Federal taxes punish taxpayers and harm the economy. The federal government has no need for those punishing and harmful tax dollars. There are several ways to reduce taxes, and we should evaluate and choose the most progressive approaches.
Cutting FICA and business taxes would be a good early step, as both dramatically affect the 99%. Annual increases in the standard income tax deduction, and a reverse income tax also would provide benefits from the bottom up. Both would narrow the Gap.
8. TAX THE VERY RICH (THE “.1%) MORE, WITH HIGHER PROGRESSIVE TAX RATES ON ALL FORMS OF INCOME. (TROPHIC CASCADE)
There was a time when I argued against increasing anyone’s federal taxes. After all, the federal government has no need for tax dollars, and all taxes reduce Gross Domestic Product, thereby negatively affecting the entire economy, including the 99.9%.
But I have come to realize that narrowing the Gap requires trimming the top. It simply would not be possible to provide the 99.9% with enough benefits to narrow the Gap in any meaningful way. Bill Gates reportedly owns $70 billion. To get to that level, he must have been earning $10 billion a year. Pick any acceptable Gap (1000 to 1?), and the lowest paid American would have to receive $10 million a year. Unreasonable.
9. FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF ALL BANKS (Click The end of private banking and How should America decide “who-gets-money”?)
Banks have created all the dollars that exist. Even dollars created at the direction of the federal government, actually come into being when banks increase the numbers in checking accounts. This gives the banks enormous financial power, and as we all know, power corrupts — especially when multiplied by a profit motive.
Although the federal government also is powerful and corrupted, it does not suffer from a profit motive, the world’s most corrupting influence.
10. INCREASE FEDERAL SPENDING ON THE MYRIAD INITIATIVES THAT BENEFIT AMERICA’S 99.9% (Federal agencies)Browse the agencies. See how many agencies benefit the lower- and middle-income/wealth/ power groups, by adding dollars to the economy and/or by actions more beneficial to the 99.9% than to the .1%.
Save this reference as your primer to current economics. Sadly, much of the material is not being taught in American schools, which is all the more reason for you to use it.

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

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

Focus on the non-problems; lose the election Monday, Jul 24 2017 

It takes only two things to keep people in chains: The ignorance of the oppressed and the treachery of their leaders..
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Imagine your car is stuck on a dark, lonely road because you have run out of gas. So you go into the trunk, pull out the jack, lift your car, and change out the tires.

Is that a good solution to your gas problem?

I mention this because the Democrats have a problem. They can’t win elections. The reason is, they don’t address the voters’ real and perceived problems.

Consider these data:

The View From the Top

The financial Gap between the rich and the rest is wide and widening. Here are some slightly newer data — the GINI Index. Not much has changed:

The higher the GINI Index the greater the distance between the rich and the rest.

The graph shows the GINI Index, the measure of financial inequality, has remained stubbornly high, partly because the rich are growing richer while the rest are standing still.

In 1998, the real median household income in the United States was $56,510. In 2015 it was $56,516. Allowing for inflation, Americans have made no progress since 1998.

Recently, a reader (ejhr2015) called my attention to a speech by Professor Stephanie Kelton, who formerly was an economic advisor to Bernie Sanders and to the Democratic Senate. She is a brilliant economist, Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

She understands that Federal taxes don’t fund federal spending, the federal government never can run short of dollars, and deficit spending is necessary to grow the economy.

Prof. Kelton also is the Director of Graduate Student Research at the Center for Full Employment and Price Stability. And therein lies the problem.

Professor Kelton, the one person who truly understands the implications of Monetary Sovereignty, and who also has an influence on Democratic Party policy, is a leader of an organization devoted to full employment and price stability at a time when unemployment and inflation are low.

Unemployment (red) and Inflation (blue) are near historic lows.

In short, the Democrats and MMT are busy changing tires, when the car has run out of gas.

What is the single biggest problem in America, today? There are many, of course. Drugs, health care, student debt, Social Security, crime, politicians, and immigration are a few. But, I say our worst, real and perceived problem is the widening Gap between the rich and the rest.

U.S. Jobs Growth Picks Up, but Wage Gains Lag Behind, By Jeffrey Sparshott
Updated July 7, 2017 6:57 p.m. ET

“Employers added 222,000 positions in June and unemployment rate ticked up to 4.4% as more people joined the workforce

U.S. employers are churning out jobs unabated as the economic expansion enters its ninth year, but the inability to generate more robust wage growth represents a missing piece in a largely complete labor recovery.

U.S. employers added a seasonally adjusted 222,000 jobs in June, the Labor Department said Friday, and the unemployment rate rose slightly to 4.4% with more people actively looking for work.

The U.S. has now added jobs for 81 consecutive months.

The good news is that even though economists suggest that the U.S. is nearing “full employment,” people are continuing to join the workforce.

The bad news is that most workers are still waiting to see meaningful pay raises.

So what is the focus of MMT and the Democrats? The non-problems of full employment and inflation.

And what does MMT suggest for the Democrats’ platform? AJobs Guarantee” of minimum wage jobs — the very last thing the voting public wants or needs.

And that is how to lose elections.

(The Ten Steps to Prosperity (below) are recommended to narrow the financial inequality Gap, the real problem facing Americans.)

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

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

The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

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 The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. ELIMINATE FICA (Ten Reasons to Eliminate FICA )
Although the article lists 10 reasons to eliminate FICA, there are two fundamental reasons:
*FICA is the most regressive tax in American history, widening the Gap by punishing the low and middle-income groups, while leaving the rich untouched, and
*The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, neither needs nor uses FICA to support Social Security and Medicare.
2. FEDERALLY FUNDED MEDICARE — PARTS A, B & D, PLUS LONG TERM CARE — FOR EVERYONE (H.R. 676, Medicare for All )
This article addresses the questions:
*Does the economy benefit when the rich can afford better health care than can the rest of Americans?
*Aside from improved health care, what are the other economic effects of “Medicare for everyone?”
*How much would it cost taxpayers?
*Who opposes it?”
3. PROVIDE A MONTHLY ECONOMIC BONUS TO EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN AMERICA (similar to Social Security for All) (The JG (Jobs Guarantee) vs the GI (Guaranteed Income) vs the EB (Economic Bonus)) Or institute a reverse income tax.
This article is the fifth in a series about direct financial assistance to Americans:

Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Employer of Last Resort is a bad idea. Sunday, Jan 1 2012
MMT’s Job Guarantee (JG) — “Another crazy, rightwing, Austrian nutjob?” Thursday, Jan 12 2012
Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Jobs Guarantee is like the EU’s euro: A beloved solution to the wrong problem. Tuesday, May 29 2012
“You can’t fire me. I’m on JG” Saturday, Jun 2 2012

Economic growth should include the “bottom” 99.9%, not just the .1%, the only question being, how best to accomplish that. Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) favors giving everyone a job. Monetary Sovereignty (MS) favors giving everyone money. The five articles describe the pros and cons of each approach.
4. FREE EDUCATION (INCLUDING POST-GRAD) FOR EVERYONE Five reasons why we should eliminate school loans
Monetarily non-sovereign State and local governments, despite their limited finances, support grades K-12. That level of education may have been sufficient for a largely agrarian economy, but not for our currently more technical economy that demands greater numbers of highly educated workers.
Because state and local funding is so limited, grades K-12 receive short shrift, especially those schools whose populations come from the lowest economic groups. And college is too costly for most families.
An educated populace benefits a nation, and benefitting the nation is the purpose of the federal government, which has the unlimited ability to pay for K-16 and beyond.
5. SALARY FOR ATTENDING SCHOOL
Even were schooling to be completely free, many young people cannot attend, because they and their families cannot afford to support non-workers. In a foundering boat, everyone needs to bail, and no one can take time off for study.
If a young person’s “job” is to learn and be productive, he/she should be paid to do that job, especially since that job is one of America’s most important.
6. ELIMINATE FEDERAL TAXES ON BUSINESS
Businesses are dollar-transferring machines. They transfer dollars from customers to employees, suppliers, shareholders and the federal government (the later having no use for those dollars). Any tax on businesses reduces the amount going to employees, suppliers and shareholders, which diminishes the economy. Ultimately, all business taxes reduce your personal income.
7. INCREASE THE STANDARD INCOME TAX DEDUCTION, ANNUALLY. (Refer to this.) Federal taxes punish taxpayers and harm the economy. The federal government has no need for those punishing and harmful tax dollars. There are several ways to reduce taxes, and we should evaluate and choose the most progressive approaches.
Cutting FICA and business taxes would be a good early step, as both dramatically affect the 99%. Annual increases in the standard income tax deduction, and a reverse income tax also would provide benefits from the bottom up. Both would narrow the Gap.
8. TAX THE VERY RICH (THE “.1%) MORE, WITH HIGHER PROGRESSIVE TAX RATES ON ALL FORMS OF INCOME. (TROPHIC CASCADE)
There was a time when I argued against increasing anyone’s federal taxes. After all, the federal government has no need for tax dollars, and all taxes reduce Gross Domestic Product, thereby negatively affecting the entire economy, including the 99.9%.
But I have come to realize that narrowing the Gap requires trimming the top. It simply would not be possible to provide the 99.9% with enough benefits to narrow the Gap in any meaningful way. Bill Gates reportedly owns $70 billion. To get to that level, he must have been earning $10 billion a year. Pick any acceptable Gap (1000 to 1?), and the lowest paid American would have to receive $10 million a year. Unreasonable.
9. FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF ALL BANKS (Click The end of private banking and How should America decide “who-gets-money”?)
Banks have created all the dollars that exist. Even dollars created at the direction of the federal government, actually come into being when banks increase the numbers in checking accounts. This gives the banks enormous financial power, and as we all know, power corrupts — especially when multiplied by a profit motive.
Although the federal government also is powerful and corrupted, it does not suffer from a profit motive, the world’s most corrupting influence.
10. INCREASE FEDERAL SPENDING ON THE MYRIAD INITIATIVES THAT BENEFIT AMERICA’S 99.9% (Federal agencies)Browse the agencies. See how many agencies benefit the lower- and middle-income/wealth/ power groups, by adding dollars to the economy and/or by actions more beneficial to the 99.9% than to the .1%.
Save this reference as your primer to current economics. Sadly, much of the material is not being taught in American schools, which is all the more reason for you to use it.

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

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

More proof the MMT’s “Jobs Guarantee” can’t work Saturday, Jan 14 2017 

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

It takes only two things to keep people in chains: The ignorance of the oppressed and the treachery of their leaders.

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

Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) understands that federal taxes do not fund federal spending. In that sense, MMT and Monetary Sovereignty (MS) are in perfect agreement.

However, we diverge in several areas, among which is MMT’s “Jobs Guarantee.” Stated in its simplest form, JG is: “The government will guarantee a job to anyone who wants a job.”

We have written about the naive impossibility of JG often, and will not repeat the various reasons here.  (If you are interested, see the links in Step #3 of the Ten Steps to Prosperity below.)

Instead, I merely will direct you to an article that succinctly addresses one of the issues:

Employers Say They Can’t Find Good Workers, but the Fix Is Simple

The economy is still shaky, (and) many parts of the country are suffering from the results of globalization. Employers have sent jobs to other parts of the world or axed them completely, in some cases.

Yet, there are still millions and millions of job openings out there. And incredibly enough, there are many employers who are complaining that they can’t find anyone to come work for them — or at least anyone who is qualified.

A July report from the Dallas Federal Reserve contained a couple of quotes from employers explaining their plight. “Entry-level candidates cannot read or follow instructions. Most cannot do simple math problems. What is wrong with the educational system? The ability to find qualified employees is our largest problem at this time.” 

This is at odds with what we’ve been hearing for many years now — that there simply aren’t enough jobs out there, and that has caused the labor participation rate to fall, and for many American communities to suffer. But evidently, that’s not quite the case.

People want jobs. There are millions of jobs available. Yet, nobody wants the jobs that are available. Why? Because many of those jobs aren’t “good” jobs. They may not pay much, for example, or offer full-time hours.

If you go back to read the links indicated in Step #3, you’ll find that the JG proposes paying minimum wage. (It does that to keep the government from competing with private industry, which would be contrary to the fundamental purpose of the JG.)

So, how will JG’s minimum wage solve the problem?  Obviously, it won’t.

What’s an employer to do, given the circumstances?

The answer is incredibly simple, but evidently, many of the nation’s employers just don’t want to face the music: They need to pay more. Low pay is the number one reason people quit their jobs, and when people quit, companies need to spend more to recruit, train, and retain new employees.

 

For the time being, the economic environment is sending the signal that wages need to go up. Employers who refuse to budge are going to continue to be flooded with applications from workers they don’t want for jobs they can’t fill.

News flash: Employers will not offer higher salaries unless that is their only alternative. Instead, they will send jobs overseas, use automation, or simply not produce job-heavy products.

The solution is not an impossible  “Jobs Guarantee” from the government.  The solution is something indicated at the beginning of this article. Remember this line?

“Entry-level candidates cannot read or follow instructions. Most cannot do simple math problems. What is wrong with the educational system? The ability to find qualified employees is our largest problem at this time.” 

Education and training is the solution, and the solution for that can be found at Steps #4 and #5 of the Ten Steps, below.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

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

The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the have-mores and the have-less.

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 The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. ELIMINATE FICA (Ten Reasons to Eliminate FICA )
Although the article lists 10 reasons to eliminate FICA, there are two fundamental reasons:
*FICA is the most regressive tax in American history, widening the Gap by punishing the low and middle-income groups, while leaving the rich untouched, and
*The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, neither needs nor uses FICA to support Social Security and Medicare.
2. FEDERALLY FUNDED MEDICARE — PARTS A, B & D, PLUS LONG TERM CARE — FOR EVERYONE (H.R. 676, Medicare for All )
This article addresses the questions:
*Does the economy benefit when the rich can afford better health care than can the rest of Americans?
*Aside from improved health care, what are the other economic effects of “Medicare for everyone?”
*How much would it cost taxpayers?
*Who opposes it?”
3. PROVIDE AN ANNUAL ECONOMIC BONUS TO EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN AMERICA, AND/OR EVERY STATE, A PER CAPITA ECONOMIC BONUS (The JG (Jobs Guarantee) vs the GI (Guaranteed Income) vs the EB) Or institute a reverse income tax.
This article is the fifth in a series about direct financial assistance to Americans:

Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Employer of Last Resort is a bad idea. Sunday, Jan 1 2012
MMT’s Job Guarantee (JG) — “Another crazy, rightwing, Austrian nutjob?” Thursday, Jan 12 2012
Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Jobs Guarantee is like the EU’s euro: A beloved solution to the wrong problem. Tuesday, May 29 2012
“You can’t fire me. I’m on JG” Saturday, Jun 2 2012

Economic growth should include the “bottom” 99.9%, not just the .1%, the only question being, how best to accomplish that. Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) favors giving everyone a job. Monetary Sovereignty (MS) favors giving everyone money. The five articles describe the pros and cons of each approach.
4. FREE EDUCATION (INCLUDING POST-GRAD) FOR EVERYONEFive reasons why we should eliminate school loans
Monetarily non-sovereign State and local governments, despite their limited finances, support grades K-12. That level of education may have been sufficient for a largely agrarian economy, but not for our currently more technical economy that demands greater numbers of highly educated workers.
Because state and local funding is so limited, grades K-12 receive short shrift, especially those schools whose populations come from the lowest economic groups. And college is too costly for most families.
An educated populace benefits a nation, and benefitting the nation is the purpose of the federal government, which has the unlimited ability to pay for K-16 and beyond.
5. SALARY FOR ATTENDING SCHOOL
Even were schooling to be completely free, many young people cannot attend, because they and their families cannot afford to support non-workers. In a foundering boat, everyone needs to bail, and no one can take time off for study.
If a young person’s “job” is to learn and be productive, he/she should be paid to do that job, especially since that job is one of America’s most important.
6. ELIMINATE CORPORATE TAXES
Corporations themselves exist only as legalities. They don’t pay taxes or pay for anything else. They are dollar-transferring machines. They transfer dollars from customers to employees, suppliers, shareholders and the government (the later having no use for those dollars).
Any tax on corporations reduces the amount going to employees, suppliers and shareholders, which diminishes the economy. Ultimately, all corporate taxes come around and reappear as deductions from your personal income.
7. INCREASE THE STANDARD INCOME TAX DEDUCTION, ANNUALLY. (Refer to this.) Federal taxes punish taxpayers and harm the economy. The federal government has no need for those punishing and harmful tax dollars. There are several ways to reduce taxes, and we should evaluate and choose the most progressive approaches.
Cutting FICA and corporate taxes would be a good early step, as both dramatically affect the 99%. Annual increases in the standard income tax deduction, and a reverse income tax also would provide benefits from the bottom up. Both would narrow the Gap.
8. TAX THE VERY RICH (THE “.1%) MORE, WITH HIGHER PROGRESSIVE TAX RATES ON ALL FORMS OF INCOME. (TROPHIC CASCADE)
There was a time when I argued against increasing anyone’s federal taxes. After all, the federal government has no need for tax dollars, and all taxes reduce Gross Domestic Product, thereby negatively affecting the entire economy, including the 99.9%.
But I have come to realize that narrowing the Gap requires trimming the top. It simply would not be possible to provide the 99.9% with enough benefits to narrow the Gap in any meaningful way. Bill Gates reportedly owns $70 billion. To get to that level, he must have been earning $10 billion a year. Pick any acceptable Gap (1000 to 1?), and the lowest paid American would have to receive $10 million a year. Unreasonable.
9. FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF ALL BANKS (Click The end of private banking and How should America decide “who-gets-money”?)
Banks have created all the dollars that exist. Even dollars created at the direction of the federal government, actually come into being when banks increase the numbers in checking accounts. This gives the banks enormous financial power, and as we all know, power corrupts — especially when multiplied by a profit motive.
Although the federal government also is powerful and corrupted, it does not suffer from a profit motive, the world’s most corrupting influence.
10. INCREASE FEDERAL SPENDING ON THE MYRIAD INITIATIVES THAT BENEFIT AMERICA’S 99.9% (Federal agencies)Browse the agencies. See how many agencies benefit the lower- and middle-income/wealth/ power groups, by adding dollars to the economy and/or by actions more beneficial to the 99.9% than to the .1%.
Save this reference as your primer to current economics. Sadly, much of the material is not being taught in American schools, which is all the more reason for you to use it.

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

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

More proof that MMT’s JG is a bad idea Wednesday, Nov 9 2016 

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

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MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) is a close cousin to this blog, MS (Monetary Sovereignty). Both schools recognize the Big Lie, which actually is a composite of several lies, among which are:

  1. Federal taxes fund federal spending. (They don’t.)
  2. You and your children owe the federal debt. (You don’t.)
  3. Federal finances are like state & local government, business, and personal financing. (They aren’t.)
  4. The federal debt and deficit are too high, “unsustainable,” and should be reduced. (The defict should be increased. The debt is immaterial.)
  5. The federal government cannot afford to pay for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other social programs. (It can, easily.)
  6. There can be “debt-free” money. (All money is debt. There never can be “debt-free” money.)

While MMT and MS agree on the fundamentals of economics, they disagree on the actions to be taken.

MS proposes implementation of the Ten Steps to Prosperity (below) to:

  • grow the economy and to
  • narrow the Gap between the rich and the rest.

MMT proposes a JG (Jobs Guarantee) to:

  • create full employment and
  • price stability.

Wikipedia: “The JG is based on the buffer stock principle whereby the public sector offers a fixed wage job to anyone willing and able to work.  

Buffer stock principle: Commodities are bought when there is a surplus in the economy, stored, and are then sold from these stores when there are economic shortages in the economy.

This says, when you are part of JG, you are not an employee. You are not even a person. You are buffer stock.  Being stock, your likes and dislikes don’t matter. What you want to do doesn’t matter.  This is the “beggars can’t be choosers” solution to joblessness.

Previously, we have published reasons why we believe the Jobs Guarantee is naive, unworkable, and not just useless, but harmful:

JG is a non-solution to the wrong problems. It assumes there is a shortage of jobs that the federal government can provide.

MS claims there is no shortage of jobs, but there may be a shortage of the right jobs, and more importantly, for many people there is a shortage of money.

Today, we received the following Email from the website, LinkedIn:

LinkedIn: Explore job openings in Greater Chicago Area
More than 136,000 new jobs are available now.

Top jobs for people like you:
1 President
2 Chief Executive Officer
3 Vice President
4 Director
5 Specialist

Get jobs tailored to you! Update your industry. This is an occasional email to help you get the most out of LinkedIn.

© 2016 LinkedIn Corporation, 2029 Stierlin Court, Mountain View CA 94043. LinkedIn and the LinkedIn logo are registered trademarks of LinkedIn.

That is 136,000 executive-type jobs available in Chicago. Additionally, just one website, Employment Crossing, listed the following non-executive jobs available in Chicago and its closest suburbs:

Chicago, IL (21,887)
Downers Grove, IL (748)
Evanston, IL (706)
Oak Brook, IL (672)
Chicago Heights, IL (607)
Deerfield, IL (600)
Bolingbrook, IL (592)
Des Plaines, IL (530)
Arlington Heights, IL (501)
Glen Ellyn, IL (467)

There are thousands upon thousands of jobs available, but visualize that you are looking for a job, and can’t find one.   Why?

There are only two reasons:

  1. You don’t want the jobs that are available to you, or:
  2. The jobs you want don’t want you.

Which of these problems is a government Jobs Guarantee program likely to solve for you?

Is the federal government going to do better than the websites, local newspapers, and employment agencies at finding the kinds of jobs you want??

Consider jobs the federal government will guarantee. They will be minimum wage jobs, and they will be federal jobs.

If you currently are looking for a job, are you really unable to find a minimum wage job?  Is that the job you want? Does offering you a minimum wage, federal job solve your money problems?

If the government provides minimum wage, government jobs to all the people who want, but can’t find, minimum wage jobs, how many people will this program actually help? Precious few.

The Jobs Guarantee is a program only an economist could love — an economist who thinks of the economy, not as composed of human beings, but as numbers on a balance sheet — as buffer stock.

To MMT economists you non-rich are born lazy. You are “takers” who must be prodded to toil as “buffer stock” rather than to receive what you really need: (money, education, healthcare, good food, good housing, a working infrastructure, etc.)

“Free stuff” is only for the rich.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

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The single most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps 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.

Implementation of The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:

Ten Steps To Prosperity:
1. ELIMINATE FICA (Ten Reasons to Eliminate FICA )
Although the article lists 10 reasons to eliminate FICA, there are two fundamental reasons:
*FICA is the most regressive tax in American history, widening the Gap by punishing the low and middle-income groups, while leaving the rich untouched, and
*The federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, neither needs nor uses FICA to support Social Security and Medicare.
2. FEDERALLY FUNDED MEDICARE — PARTS A, B & D, PLUS LONG TERM CARE — FOR EVERYONE (H.R. 676, Medicare for All )
This article addresses the questions:
*Does the economy benefit when the rich can afford better health care than can the rest of Americans?
*Aside from improved health care, what are the other economic effects of “Medicare for everyone?”
*How much would it cost taxpayers?
*Who opposes it?”
3. PROVIDE AN ANNUAL ECONOMIC BONUS TO EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN AMERICA, AND/OR EVERY STATE, A PER CAPITA ECONOMIC BONUS (The JG (Jobs Guarantee) vs the GI (Guaranteed Income) vs the EB) Or institute a reverse income tax.
This article is the fifth in a series about direct financial assistance to Americans:

Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Employer of Last Resort is a bad idea. Sunday, Jan 1 2012
MMT’s Job Guarantee (JG) — “Another crazy, rightwing, Austrian nutjob?” Thursday, Jan 12 2012
Why Modern Monetary Theory’s Jobs Guarantee is like the EU’s euro: A beloved solution to the wrong problem. Tuesday, May 29 2012
“You can’t fire me. I’m on JG” Saturday, Jun 2 2012

Economic growth should include the “bottom” 99.9%, not just the .1%, the only question being, how best to accomplish that. Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) favors giving everyone a job. Monetary Sovereignty (MS) favors giving everyone money. The five articles describe the pros and cons of each approach.
4. FREE EDUCATION (INCLUDING POST-GRAD) FOR EVERYONEFive reasons why we should eliminate school loans
Monetarily non-sovereign State and local governments, despite their limited finances, support grades K-12. That level of education may have been sufficient for a largely agrarian economy, but not for our currently more technical economy that demands greater numbers of highly educated workers.
Because state and local funding is so limited, grades K-12 receive short shrift, especially those schools whose populations come from the lowest economic groups. And college is too costly for most families.
An educated populace benefits a nation, and benefiting the nation is the purpose of the federal government, which has the unlimited ability to pay for K-16 and beyond.
5. SALARY FOR ATTENDING SCHOOL
Even were schooling to be completely free, many young people cannot attend, because they and their families cannot afford to support non-workers. In a foundering boat, everyone needs to bail, and no one can take time off for study.
If a young person’s “job” is to learn and be productive, he/she should be paid to do that job, especially since that job is one of America’s most important.
6. ELIMINATE CORPORATE TAXES
Corporations themselves exist only as legalities. They don’t pay taxes or pay for anything else. They are dollar-transferring machines. They transfer dollars from customers to employees, suppliers, shareholders and the government (the later having no use for those dollars).
Any tax on corporations reduces the amount going to employees, suppliers and shareholders, which diminishes the economy. Ultimately, all corporate taxes come around and reappear as deductions from your personal income.
7. INCREASE THE STANDARD INCOME TAX DEDUCTION, ANNUALLY. (Refer to this.) Federal taxes punish taxpayers and harm the economy. The federal government has no need for those punishing and harmful tax dollars. There are several ways to reduce taxes, and we should evaluate and choose the most progressive approaches.
Cutting FICA and corporate taxes would be a good early step, as both dramatically affect the 99%. Annual increases in the standard income tax deduction, and a reverse income tax also would provide benefits from the bottom up. Both would narrow the Gap.
8. TAX THE VERY RICH (THE “.1%) MORE, WITH HIGHER PROGRESSIVE TAX RATES ON ALL FORMS OF INCOME. (TROPHIC CASCADE)
There was a time when I argued against increasing anyone’s federal taxes. After all, the federal government has no need for tax dollars, and all taxes reduce Gross Domestic Product, thereby negatively affecting the entire economy, including the 99.9%.
But I have come to realize that narrowing the Gap requires trimming the top. It simply would not be possible to provide the 99.9% with enough benefits to narrow the Gap in any meaningful way. Bill Gates reportedly owns $70 billion. To get to that level, he must have been earning $10 billion a year. Pick any acceptable Gap (1000 to 1?), and the lowest paid American would have to receive $10 million a year. Unreasonable.
9. FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF ALL BANKS (Click The end of private banking and How should America decide “who-gets-money”?)
Banks have created all the dollars that exist. Even dollars created at the direction of the federal government, actually come into being when banks increase the numbers in checking accounts. This gives the banks enormous financial power, and as we all know, power corrupts — especially when multiplied by a profit motive.
Although the federal government also is powerful and corrupted, it does not suffer from a profit motive, the world’s most corrupting influence.
10. INCREASE FEDERAL SPENDING ON THE MYRIAD INITIATIVES THAT BENEFIT AMERICA’S 99.9% (Federal agencies)Browse the agencies. See how many agencies benefit the lower- and middle-income/wealth/ power groups, by adding dollars to the economy and/or by actions more beneficial to the 99.9% than to the .1%.
Save this reference as your primer to current economics. Sadly, much of the material is not being taught in American schools, which is all the more reason for you to use it.

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

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

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