A book you should read

This is a book you should read.

Stephanie Kelton explains economics from the standpoint of Modern Monetary Theory and her own inside experiences with U.S. Senators.

She provides you with some her own take about why Congress refuses to acknowledge its unlimited ability to create dollars, and pay for benefits.

The Deficit Myth: Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People's Economy

While “the DEFICIT MYTH” is not exactly on point with Monetary Sovereignty, the fundamentals are the same (the federal government’s infinite ability to pay for things and the need for federal “debt”). The book is an easy, enjoyable read.

No economics gobbledygook.

You’ll be able to see how her explanations for the causes of inflation and the need for federal taxes differ from those of Monetary Sovereignty. Read her book, and then we can discuss it from the standpoints of the differences and the similarities.

I recommend it to you. I also recommend it especially to your Congressional representatives, who would do well to learn the facts. After you read it, make a difference in the world by sending a copy to your most intelligent Congressperson.

It’s available on Amazon. Enjoy.

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. Social Security for all or a reverse income tax

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

If you could provide free, comprehensive healthcare to everyone . . .

If you were a multi-trillionaire, and you easily could afford to provide free healthcare to every man, woman, and child in America, would you do it?Image result for rich man

Imagine, no sick child dying from a treatable illness, no parent suffering without a doctor, no homeless person languishing in what should be curable pain — and you could do this simply by writing a check.

Would you do it?

Would you do it if it all could be accomplished by your command, without it costing you even one cent? All you would need to do is say, “Give everyone health care.” Would you do it?

Or would you just let sick people suffer and die too soon?

You actually do have that choice and you do have that power. Your choice is to tell your Senators and Representatives to create a comprehensive, no-deductible Medicare-for-All plan that covers all hospitals, all doctors, all medically approved treatments, and all pharmaceuticals.

And yes, it won’t cost you even one cent, because the U.S. federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, creates new dollars, ad hoc, every time it pays a bill.

Federal finances are different from city, county, and state finances. These local governments are monetarily non-sovereign. They do not create dollars by paying bills. They can run short of dollars and become insolvent. They need and use tax dollars, which they deposit in banks.

By contrast, the government neither needs nor even uses tax dollars. Those federal tax dollars, that are taken from your paycheck or your checking account, are destroyed upon receipt. They never see a bank. They never are part of any money-supply measure.

Even if all federal tax collections, including federal income taxes, FICA payroll taxes,  federal luxury taxes, — every federal tax of every kind — were eliminated, the federal government could continue spending forever. It never can run short of its own sovereign currency, the U.S. dollar.

With Medicare for all, we’re not talking about socialism, where the government owns all the hospitals and employs all the health care providers. (That’s like the Veteran’s Administration).

We’re talking about the U.S. government being the insurer — taking the place of private insurance companies, but providing much more comprehensive coverage than any insurance company could afford — and not charging you or your employer anything.

If you were Monetarily Sovereign, like the U.S. government is, you easily could provide comprehensive, no-cost medical insurance to every American.

And yet, many Americans, not understanding the facts of Monetary Sovereignty, say they don’t want to change. They want to continue paying for private insurance. They want to continue paying FICA. They want to continue paying deductibles and being subject to limitations.

They want to continue paying the 20% copay Medicare charges. And they want to continue paying for Medicare Part D, or thousands, or hundreds of thousands, for expensive drugs. 

They want each insurance company to offer a different formulary, so it becomes necessary to hunt through multiple companies to learn whether certain drugs are covered, only to be surprised when the doctor prescribes a new drug that isn’t covered.

This is what people say they want, but it’s not what you really want. No one would.

We Americans have been deceived by the politicians, who have been bought and paid for by the insurance and pharmaceutical industries. Here are some of the lies we have been told:

1. Medicare-for-All is socialism.
As we said previously, with  socialism, the government owns and operates all the medical providers.

In Medicare-for-All, the government merely would pay for medical services, just as private insurance companies now do — just as Medicare now does, though Medicare is too limited.

2. Medicare-for-All would cost too much.
There are only two alternatives for medical services: Either someone pays or someone does without.

Thus, Americans have these choices:

*The federal government will pay for your medical care, or
*You will pay, or
*You will do without medical care.

Which do you prefer?

3. If the government pays, the federal deficit and debt would increase.
The so-called “federal debt” is the incorrect name given to the total of Treasury securities issued by the Treasury. They are similar to bank CDs.

The Treasury does not issue them to obtain dollars (which it can create endlessly), but rather to provide a safe “parking place” for unused dollars and to help control interest rates.

The Treasury could stop issuing T-securities tomorrow, and still continue to spend, forever.

For the past eighty years, misleaders have been telling the American people that the federal debt is an unsustainable, “ticking time bomb.” Yet here we are, the so-called “time bomb” still is ticking, and the economy still is sustaining and growing.

The federal debt is no burden on anyone — not on the government, not on you, not on your grandchildren. Federal taxes do not pay for the federal debt.

The “federal deficit” is the difference between taxes collected and dollars spent. No one ever “pays for” the deficit. It merely is a bookkeeping number, of no threat to anyone.

Increased deficits grow the economy by adding dollars to the private sector.

In fact, reductions in deficits lead to recessions and depressions, and increases in deficits cure recessions and depressions.

Deficit reductions lead to recessions (vertical bars), which are cured by deficit increases

4. Medicare-for-All would cause inflation.
The failure to take FICA dollars from your paycheck is not inflationary. The failure to take FICA dollars from employers is not inflationary. Paying for healthcare is not inflationary.

Inflations are caused by shortages, not by federal spending.

5. Medicare-for-All would bankrupt the pharmaceutical companies
On the contrary, the pharmaceutical companies would benefit.

Today, nearly all pharmaceuticals are paid for by insurance and by individuals. Under Medicare-for-All, the drugs would be paid for by the federal government, similar to a free, comprehensive version of Medicare Part D.

Have you ever seen drug commercials that say, “If you can’t afford your prescription contact us”? Patient assistance programs are run by pharmaceutical companies to provide free medications to people who cannot afford to buy their medicine.

Comprehensive Medicare-for-All not only would increase the number of people who purchase pharmaceuticals, but would relieve the drug companies of any obligation to fund patient assistance programs.

6. Medicare-for-All would bankrupt the healthcare insurance companies.
Actually, there is some truth to this. Over the years, many industries disappear, only to be replaced by new industries.

When I was very young, the way to make a phone call was to tell the number to a human operator, of whom there were hundreds of thousands. Also, horse-drawn carts were common. Those, and thousands of other industries, have disappeared, much to the benefit of the American public.

Private healthcare insurance, its complications, unfairness, and its onerous costs, all would disappear.

Unfortunately, even the people who favor Medicare-for-All, do not have the knowledge, the courage, or the honesty to tell you the truth: It can be funded 100% by our Monetarily Sovereign federal government.

Support for a national Medicare-for-all plan swings wildly after folks hear about the potential effects. It spikes when respondents are told that it would guarantee health insurance as a right or eliminate premiums and reduce out-of-pocket costs.

But favorability slumps when they are told it would eliminate private health insurance, raise taxes or threaten the current Medicare program.

And it tanks when told it would lead to delays in receiving care.

Many people don’t think Medicare-for-all would have an impact on them.

There is, in fact, no reason for taxes to increase. In fact, taxes would decrease dramatically. No more FICA paid by you or businesses.

There would be no “threat” to Medicare. It simply would be expanded.

Delays could be prevented by paying healthcare providers enough to encourage entry into the market. Given unlimited dollars, there is no reason to scrimp on payments.

Medicare-for-All would benefit everyone, the sick and the well, the young and the old, the rich and the poor.

Unfortunately, because of misinformation and disinformation, very few Americans are able to visualize a true Medicare-for-All program. So they assume the wrong threats.

A Kaiser Family Foundation January 2019 tracking poll revealed that Americans believe  Congress’ top priorities should be:

Percent who say the following is the top priority for Congress

Making sure Obamacare’s pre-existing conditions protections continue: 21%
Lower drug costs: 20%
Implementing Medicare-for-All: 11%
Repealing & replacing Obamacare: 11%e
Protecting people from surprise medical bills: 9%

See how misinformation permeates the answers? With Medicare-for-All, there would be no need for Obamacare,  pre-existing conditions would be protected, drug costs would be zero, and no one would need to worry about surprise medical bills.

Even Bernie Sanders, the foremost proponent of Medicare-for-All, misleads the public.

Bernie starts out well enough. Here’s what his site says:

BETTER COVERAGE 
Bernie’s plan would create a federally administered single-payer health care program. Universal single-payer health care means comprehensive coverage for all Americans.

Bernie’s plan will cover the entire continuum of health care, from inpatient to outpatient care; preventive to emergency care; primary care to specialty care, including long-term and palliative care; vision, hearing and oral health care; mental health and substance abuse services; as well as prescription medications, medical equipment, supplies, diagnostics and treatments.

Patients will be able to choose a health care provider without worrying about whether that provider is in-network and will be able to get the care they need without having to read any fine print or trying to figure out how they can afford the out-of-pocket costs.

WHAT IT MEANS FOR PATIENTS
As a patient, all you need to do is go to the doctor and show your insurance card. Bernie’s plan means no more copays, no more deductibles and no more fighting with insurance companieswhen they fail to pay for charges.

The above is perfect, exactly what the plan should do, though I’m not sure why you would have to show an insurance card. If you’re here, you’re covered. Perhaps there are overseas issues to be worked out.

But anyway, then Bernie goes completely off track. Here is what his web site says:

HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?
This plan has been estimated to cost $1.38 trillion per year.

THE PLAN WOULD BE FULLY PAID FOR BY:
A 6.2 percent income-based health care premium paid by employers.
A 2.2 percent income-based premium paid by households.
Progressive income tax rates.

37 percent on income between $250,000 and $500,000.
43 percent on income between $500,000 and $2 million.
48 percent on income between $2 million and $10 million.
52 percent on income above $10 million.

Taxing capital gains and dividends the same as income from work.
Limit tax deductions for rich.
The Responsible Estate Tax.
Savings from health tax expenditures.

If Bernie were honest and courageous, he would have said: THE PLAN WOULD BE FULLY  PAID FOR BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. Period.

The above-listed tax increases will pay for nothing. The federal government does not use tax dollars to pay for spending. Tax dollars are destroyed upon receipt.

But Bernie has gone along with the phony “affordability” issue, rather than fighting it.

Image result for bernanke and greenspan
Doesn’t Bernie know we don’t use tax dollars? Why should we? We create all the dollars we need.

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.”

Alan Greenspan: “Central banks can issue currency, a non-interest-bearing claim on the government, effectively without limit. A government cannot become insolvent with respect to obligations in its own currency.”

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.

Bernie understands this. He was assisted by Professor Stephanie Kelton, who not only knows Monetary Sovereignty quite well, but has taught it to Bernie.

So, I must assume Bernie believes the American people are not smart enough to understand it — and that they would say, “There is no such thing as a free lunch,” or “Why does the government collect taxes, if they don’t need them,” and other admissions of ignorance that substitute for knowledge.

And he doesn’t have the political courage to set them straight.

Is he right?

What about you? If Medicare-for-All could be accomplished just by your command, without it costing you even one cent, and all you would need to do is tell the politicians, “Give everyone health care,” would you do it?

Should Bernie do it?

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

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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

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 you.

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY

Focus on the non-problems; lose the election

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

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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

Whither goest the Democrats? What are their goals

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

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

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What is your answer to this question, “What are the goals of the Democrats?” The question is important, because a movement without identifiable goals cannot survive.

A few years ago, there came upon us the “Occupy” movement. Remember them?  They were a protImage result for occupy wall streetest movement, primarily decrying social inequality, financial inequality, excessive corporate power, consumerism, materialism, and corruption in government and industry.

The “Occupy” protest movement was inspired by the “Arab Spring” protest movement — primarily protesting authoritarianism. and corruption.

The two movements had two things in common, which doomed them to failure:Image result for occupy wall street

  1. They had no clear-cut goals.  They were against many things — mostly greed, power, and unfairness — but for nothing. They offered no specific proposals or solutions.
  2. They had no leaders. In their essence, they were mobs.

Like Arab Spring, Occupy began with great emotion, and that emotion carried it for a while as it spread across America and parts of the world. But emotion alone has no staying power.

Without specific, focused ideas, and without clear leadership, Occupy, like Arab Spring, faded from the scene, and today exists primarily in the hopes and prayers of a few loyalists, and in the catch line: “We are the 99%.”

And the same thing happened to the Democratic Party.

There was a time when the Democrats were liberals, and there was a time when the liberals were progressive. America’s last truly liberal/progressive President was Lyndon Johnson.

Johnson not only had a belief, even a passion, for civil fairness, but he was a strong leader who executed specific plans to accomplish his beliefs.

He didn’t just complain about injustice. He acted. He gave us the “Great Society” which included civil rights legislation, Medicare, Medicaid, aids to education and the arts, and public broadcasting, among others.

Today, “liberalism” has been re-engineered to “neoliberalism,” which is not liberalism at all.  It’s conservatism.

So, with Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, the Democrats slid far to the right, and today the Party has difficulty answering “What are the specific goals of the Democrats other than to regain office?”

The Democrats are a “weak tea” form of Republicans.  That is why Hillary lost. She was Trump in a pink pants suit.

The Tea/Republican Party has very specific goals: Cut taxes on the rich, and cut social spending for the poor. These goals are clear, they are strong, they can be defended, and the Republicans have a charismatic leader who has a following.

In 2011, I wrote and published an open letter to Occupy Wall Street. Here are a few excerpts:

O.K., we get it and we empathize with it. You’re angry at the banks. You’re angry at the politicians and the rich and the corporations. You’re angry at the lying, the cheating. You’re angry at the unemployment, and gap between rich and poor.

We empathize with you.

Now, to get from here to there, you have to figure out exactly where “there” is, and that requires focus. Exactly, what do you want to see happen, and who will make it happen?

That is the key question for any movement, any political party, even any business leader: “Exactly, what do you want to see happen, and who will make it happen?”

Occupy never answered that question. Arab Spring never answered that question. And the Democrats don’t know the answer to that question. They don’t even know why they are Democrats, other than they hate Trump, lies, and bigotry, in no specific order.

The open letter continued:

Before you answer, it’s important to know what you’re talking about. Which you don’t.

Ask any ten of your people in the street, “What’s the problem and how should it be solved?” and I suspect you’ll receive ten different answers, all ridiculous.

The reason: They, and virtually all your #OWS followers, do not understand economics. Specifically, you do not understand Monetary Sovereignty.

Not understanding Monetary Sovereignty precludes answering a question the conservatives have no trouble answering: “Who will pay for it?” 

The truthful answer is, “The federal government.”

A big Monetarily Sovereign government can pay for anything, never running short of its own sovereign currency, and controlling inflation at any level it chooses. America proves it every day. But this must be explained to the populace. It’s not intuitive.

Being a conservative is easy. All you need do is say, “Cut taxes and cut spending.” Nice and concise. Never mind that the spending cuts sought by the Republicans will hurt the poor, and the tax cuts will benefit the rich.

The voters don’t understand that. For the uninformed, those are benefits, not bugs.

By contrast, when Democrat Bernie Sanders proposes a liberal program like Medicare for All, a wonderful idea that would massively benefit America, he flounders when trying to answer the “Who will pay?” question.

He flounders because, despite his understanding of Monetary Sovereignty, he believes the public is too stupid to learn about it.

So he concedes the lie that deficits are bad, and he pretends his program can be accomplished without them.

It’s like telling starved people you will give them more food, while pretending that farms aren’t necessary.

It is the same for all liberal/progressive programs. Unless the Democrats understand, and then have the courage to explain, the realities of federal financing, i.e. Monetary Sovereignty, they will have no truthful answer to the question, “Who will pay?”

The open letter concluded:

Today, you are seen as leading an amorphous mob, a group threatening to bring down civilization. That’s why the politicians have been slow to back you. They don’t know what you want.

You need to focus, focus, focus, so the world can visualize where you want to go, understand why you want to go there and how you will achieve it, and in that way, join you.

You need to understand, then teach, Monetary Sovereignty, first to your followers, then to the rest of the world.

Those are your next steps. And there are plenty of us who can teach you. You have but to ask.

Of course, they never asked, so they never learned. And even today, they are ignorant about economics, though their protest is all about economics.

Now, we have the current Democrats, who even hired Professor Stephanie Kelton, an expert who does understand Monetary Sovereignty, to be their economist. And still, they don’t have the fortitude to risk explaining the facts.

A real Democrat, i.e. a real liberal, wants the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest narrowed, together with solid economic growth. Those should be the overall goals, which would be accomplished via the Ten Steps to Prosperity (below).

To reach those goals requires a leader who both can and will answer the question, “Who will pay for it?”

Image result for occupy wall street jail

Until the Democrats find such a leader, who will present their goals and the means to reach them, the Party will be nothing more than a imprisoned mob, like “Occupy” and “Arab Spring,” forever complaining and forever looking out through the bars of their own making.

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 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 (Guaranteed Income)) 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