The Big Lie is alive and well and living in DC and the Chicago Tribune Monday, Mar 20 2017 

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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Readers of this blog know that unlike state and local governments, the U.S. federal government is Monetarily Sovereign.

A key feature of a Monetarily Sovereign government is that taxes do not fund its spending. Unlike state and local governments, the U.S. government creates its sovereign currency, the dollar, ad hoc, by spending.

Paying creditors is how the federal government creates dollars. 

Thus, even if the federal government did not collect a single dollar in Image result for taxpayertaxes, it could continue spending — even dramatically increase spending — forever.

“The Big Lie” is the lie that federal finances are like state and local finances, and like your personal finances. You and your state and local governments need income in order to spend. These governments need to tax and in many cases, need to borrow.

The federal government needs no income. It creates unlimited dollars simply by spending. Here are examples of The Big Lie, from today’s Chicago Tribune:

What Trump’s budget blueprint gets right
A forced reassessment of never-ending programs

We’re grateful to White House budget director Mick Mulvaney for reminding everyone of the ultimate source of every dollar. “We’re trying to focus on both the recipients of the money and the folks who give us the money in the first place,” he said Thursday.

There are no “folks who give” (the federal government money to spend). While you do pay taxes, the government neither needs nor uses those tax dollars.

Upon receipt by the federal government, your taxes disappear from the money supply. Unlike what commonly is believed, and unlike the way state and local governments operate, your federal tax dollars are not saved for future spending.

Your federal tax dollars effectively are destroyed upon arrival.

Among the agencies that would be zeroed out are the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (which got $445 million last year), the Appalachian Regional Commission ($146 million), the National Endowment for the Arts ($148 million) and the National Endowment for the Humanities ($148 million).

The plan would cut the Environmental Protection Agency by $2.6 billion, the Agriculture Department by $4.7 billion and the State Department by nearly $11 billion

One phrase that was not heard much from opponents of the plan was “$20 trillion in federal debt.” But that’s what decades of chronic overspending have created. Just servicing that debt will cost taxpayers $270 billion this year — which is $270 billion that can’t be spent on other functions, such as the ones President Donald Trump proposes to cut.

The misnamed “federal debt” is not what you may think.  This “debt” actually is the total of deposits in T-security (T-bills, T-notes, T-bonds) accounts at the Federal Reserve Bank.  The so-called “debt” is just federal bank account deposits.

When you want to invest in a T-security, you instruct the Federal Reserve Bank to credit your T-security account, and simultaneously to debit your personal checking account at your local bank.  In essence, paying the “debt” involves a transfer of your dollars from your checking account to your T-security account.

The entire federal debt easily could be paid off tomorrow.

Paying off the federal debt is no burden on you, on me or on the federal government. Taxpayers are not involved in any aspect of the federal debt. Paying the “debt” is just a transfer of existing dollars.

What about that $270 billion in interest payments? When the federal government pays any bill, including interest, it creates the necessary dollars, ad hoc. Here’s how: It sends instructions (not dollars) to the creditor’s bank, instructing the bank to increase the balance in the creditor’s checking account.

At the moment the creditor’s bank does as instructed, new dollars are created and added to the money supply. No tax dollars are involved. The federal government has the unlimited power to send such instructions to banks. It never can run short of instructions, and the banks always will obey those instructions.

These new dollars stimulate the economy; they grow Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the formula for which is:

GDP = Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports

As you can see, federal spending for interest payments on the so-called “debt,” stimulate GDP growth. Rather than being a concern, the “debt” (deposits) facilitates economic growth.

When the Tribune refers to interest as “$270 billion that can’t be spent on other functions” that is a perfect expression of The Big Lie.

Not only is the federal government unlimited in what it can spend on other functions, but that $270 billion adds dollars to the private economy, which it spends on other functions.

The $270 billion in interest payments is a benefit to the economy, not a cost.

And as for those millions and billions being cut from agencies, not only are important agencies being hamstrung, but those cuts are dollars the economy never will see. Those cuts will not contribute to economic growth.

Is it really so outrageous to think public broadcasting can support itself in the age of Netflix? Is that $148 million for the NEA indispensable, given that Americans donated $17 billion last year — more than 100 times as much — to support the arts?

If Appalachia still depends on special assistance from Washington, what does that say about the effectiveness of the 52-year-old Appalachian Regional Commission?

If Trump thinks the EPA can function with less money, shouldn’t the agency and its defenders be asked to prove its value?

Utter nonsense. Any agency can “support itself” with less money. No amount of money is “indispensable.” The questions are, however:

  1. What is the economic purpose of the cuts?
  2. What will the cuts do to the effectiveness of the agency?
  3. Why not give the agency more dollars, rather than fewer?

Those questions have not been addressed by the politicians or the media, whose sole goal seems to be to reduce GDP, i.e. reduce economic growth, by cutting federal spending.

Plenty of local and state organizations count on federal funding, and they warn that some states and cities wouldn’t make it up if it went missing. But there are a couple of reasons for that. One is that these programs are not as high a priority to those states and localities as competing ones are.

States are monetarily non-sovereign. They need income, and that comes from taxes, from borrowing, and from the federal government. Federal spending on state projects saves taxpayers money.

Federal spending saves you tax money.

And now (ta da), the Chicago Tribune tacitly admits it has been telling the Big Lie all along:

(The) states, unlike the feds, can’t run enormous deficits every year.

That’s right, folks. State finances are not like federal finances. The federal government CAN run enormous deficits every year — and it can do it forever. Not only that, but federal deficit spending adds dollars to the economy and grows the economy.

So, Chicago Tribune and Mick Mulvaney and President Trump and Congress, what exactly is the problem you wish to solve by cutting federal spending?  

The Trump administration’s proposals will force lawmakers and citizens to reconsider not only the benefits of all the targeted outlays but also the cost of continuing them.

Our leaders have gotten used to operating as though Washington could live beyond its means forever. If this blueprint destroys that illusion, it will have done a great service.

But wait. The Tribune just admitted the feds, unlike the states, can run enormous deficits every year. That being true (and it is), why is there “an illusion” for Washington to live “beyond its means”?

The federal government creates dollars by spending dollars.  It has no “means” to live beyond. There is no “cost” of continuing federal spending.

Finally, you might ask, why do the Tribune and the politicians repeatedly tell The Big Lie (even though occasionally they stumble over themselves as the Tribune just did)?

The reason: That is what the very rich want. Most federal spending benefits the not-rich, the so-called 99%. The rich don’t like that; they want the Gap between the rich and the rest to widen.

So the rich bribe the politicians (via campaign contributions and promises of lucrative employment later); they bribe the media (via ownership and advertising revenue); and they bribe the economists (via university contributions and “think tank” employment) to tell the populace The Big Lie that the federal government would have to raise taxes if it continues to spend.

But, there is absolutely no reason to cut federal spending on important services. The federal government could and should implement the Ten Steps to Prosperity (see below).

The federal government has the power to narrow the Gap between the rich and the rest while enriching and growing the economy if it simply stopped telling The Big Lie.

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

Gap Psychology and The Big Lie: You are low class, and should be treated badly Saturday, Mar 18 2017 

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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Because you are a blue collar worker toiling in a hard job — you have no class. You have no appreciation for the finer things in life.

You don’t care about the arts. You have no feeling for paintings, music, poetry, or fiction. You were born low class; you live a low-class life;  and you will die low class.

That’s just the way you are.  Here’s who says so:

Trump administration justifies cuts to arts programs by arguing they ‘sound great’ but aren’t actually ‘helping anybody’ 

The Trump administration’s budget proposes the elimination of all funding to programs including the National Endowment of the Arts, Meals on Wheels, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a decision Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney defended Thursday by citing coal miners and single moms, Politico reports

“When you start looking at places that we reduce spending, one of the questions we asked was can we really continue to ask a coal miner in West Virginia or a single mom in Detroit to pay for these programs?

The answer was no,” Mulvaney told the hosts of Morning Joe on Thursday. “We can ask them to pay for defense, and we will, but we can’t ask them to continue to pay for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.”

You may have voted for Trump, but this is what he thinks of you: If you are a coal miner from West Virginia, he thinks you are a dirty, swearing, beer-swizzling clod — an oaf who has no appreciation for opera, symphony, painting, sculpture or any other of the finer things. They don’t “help” the likes of you.Image result for symphony

If you are a single mom in Detroit, he thinks you are a drugged, food-stamp mama, who also cares nothing for the arts or for public radio.

All you listen to is rap music to the beat of gunfire.You care about the military, because in your rough, course life, shooting and killing are necessities.

At least, that is the picture Trump’s Budget Director, Mick Mulvaney, tries to paint. It is his way to dehumanize you, so that any benefits you receive from the government can be taken from you without widespread protest.

You neither want nor deserve government support for the arts, for education, for health care, for good housing, for good food or for the safety of your children.

The government can cut those benefits from its budget, without fear of offending you or those above you on the totem pole. You have no worth or self-worth to be offended.

We have discussed “Gap Psychology” previously. It is the popular belief that people below us on the income/wealth/power scale are inferior and to be disrespected, while people above us are superior and to be admired.

“But,” you may ask, “why would the government even want to take benefits away from me?” That is where The Big Lie raises its ugly head.

In asking one simple question, Rick Mulvaney promulgates both sides of the Big Lie. Remember his question was:

“When you start looking at places that we reduce spending, one of the questions we asked was can we really continue to ask a coal miner in West Virginia or a single mom in Detroit to pay for these programs?

In the first part of his question, “When you start looking at places that we reduce spending . . . “ he promulgates this part of The Big Lie:The federal government can’t afford [unwanted program].

He implies the federal government can’t afford to support the arts, education, health care, etc. and at the same time support the military. He tells you the government needs to reduce spending, when in fact, the government needs to increase spending, especially on the social programs that will benefit you.

He wants you to believe it’s “either – or,” either the arts or the military. It’s a lie. The Big Lie.

The U.S. federal government, being Monetarily Sovereign, never can run short of its own sovereign currency, dollars. The federal government’s method for creating new dollars to grow the economy is to deficit spend. That is demonstrated by the formula for the prime measure of economic growth, Gross Domestic Product:

GDP = Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports

By formula, federal spending grows the U.S. economy.When Mulvaney says, ” . . . can we really continue to ask

When Mulvaney says, ” . . . can we really continue to ask a coal miner in West Virginia or a single mom in Detroit to pay for these programs?” he promulgates this part of The Big Lie: Federal taxes pay for federal spending.

Unlike state and local taxes, which do pay for state and local government spending, federal taxes do not fund federal spending. Even if all federal tax collections fell to $0, the federal government could continue spending, forever.

The government creates dollars by spending and destroys dollars by taxing.  Federal spending itself creates new dollars, ad hoc. No need for taxes.

So here is Mulvaney’s Big Lie in its entirety:

The federal government can’t afford [unwanted program], and Federal taxes pay for federal spending.

The Big Lie is supported by Gap Psychology, which is funded by the rich.

It is the rich who want everyone to believe the Gap between the rich and the rest should be widened, the rich are superior, the poorer are inferior, and the government cannot afford to help the inferior poor.

Donald Trump is a rich man.  He has stocked his cabinet with millionaires and billionaires. He doesn’t associate with those you are poorer. He doesn’t know or respect you. But he loves the military, because it gives him a sense of power.

He can strut belligerently on the world stage, because he controls the biggest weapons and the most soldiers. As a bully, he relishes power, and excuses it as “defense,” as though any nation would dare attack us and survive.

If you read his proposed budget, you will see that throughout it Rewards his Rich pals, and it Punishes you Poorer people. RRPP

(It is) “an agenda of tax cuts for the wealthy, deregulation of Wall Street, and gutting families’ health security . . . “

Trump’s method is The Big Lie and Gap Psychology working in unison to convince you that you want less and you deserve less, while he and his family and cronies deserve more.

It is his attempt to brainwash you and an entire nation.

So far he has succeeded.

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 (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

RRPP: Reward the Rich; Punish the Poor. The GOP doctrine Friday, Mar 17 2017 

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

BACKGROUND:

As readers of this site know, the primary financial goal of the rich is to widen the Gap between the rich and the rest.

It is the Gap that makes them rich. Without the Gap, no one would be rich — we all would be the same — and the wider the Gap, the richer they are.

For the rich, depriving you of money is just as important as taking more money for themselves. The result is the same. The Gap widens. The rich grow richer.Image result for take from the poor and give to the rich

When you see arguments against federal support for the poor and middle-income groups, understand that these are mere disguises for making the rich richer. That is what widening the Gap does.

The Big Lie (that our Monetarily Sovereign government’s deficits and debt are “unsustainable”) is based on the desire by the rich to widen the Gap.

The truth: The U.S. federal government never can run short of dollars, never can find any spending “unsustainable,” and has total control over inflation. The rich do not want you to understand what Monetary Sovereignty means.

The rich want you to become part of a large supply of desperate people, willing to work hard jobs for starvation wages.

THE TRUMP BUDGET:

A website called “News.Mic” published their estimates of what the latest Trump/Republican budget would do to widen the Gap.  As you read this summary, visualize who voted for Trump and how his budget would affect them:

  1. Increase military spending $54 billion.
  2. Spend an extra $4.1 Billion for his border wall
  3. Cut $9.2 billion — or 13.5 percent — from the Education Department’s budget, to reduce or eliminate grants for teacher training, after-school programs and aid to ­low-income and first-generation college students.
  4. Shift $1.4 billion to charter schools and private school vouchers.
  5. Cut the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget by 31%, costing 2,300 employees their jobs, while opening the door for increased global warming.
  6. Cut $100 million in spending on research and international programs on combating climate change.
  7. The Washington Post provides the following list of agencies that would disappear. You may recognize some of them:
  8. Cut the State Department 28.5%. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said, “the level of spending that the State Department has been undertaking … is simply not sustainable.”
  9. Cut $6 billion from the National Institutes of Health, which could cripple important scientific research that requires NIH funding, which could decimate biomedical research in a number of areas and stagger academic institutions around the country that depend on NIH grant money to keep their scientific research programs afloat.
  10. Overall, cut $15.1 billion cut from the Department of Health and Human Services, which includes the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as Medicare and Medicaid.
  11. Cut 13.2% from the Housing and Urban Development department, and eliminate the Community Development Block Grant Program, which helps fund Meals on Wheels (the service for people age 60+that are homebound and unable to cook or shop for themselves).
  12. Cut 21% from the Department of Agriculture, which would hurt farmers and rural communities.
  13. Cut $2.5 billion from the Labor department. Job training programs — including those aimed at helping seniors, disadvantaged young people and unemployed Americans.

In all, budgets for 14 agencies (including NASA, Transportation, Education, Justice, and Labor) would be cut.

Only three agencies would receive more: Veterans Affairs ($1.4 billion), Homeland Security ($0.8 billion), and Defense ($52.3 billion).

If you were to summarize the thrust of Trump’s budget, it would be: Reward the Rich (especially defense contractors) and Punish the Poor.

RRPP.

As you know, the excuse for this Gap-widening exercise always is the typical line: “The federal government’s deficit spending is ‘unsustainable.'” The federal government, which creates U.S. dollars ad hoc, by spending, supposedly will run short of its own sovereign currency (aka The Big Lie).

You who voted for Trump, but now see him for the fraud he is, and who now regret your vote — you are to be congratulated for recognizing fact. It takes courage and character to admit one’s mistakes.

You who voted for Trump, but refuse to admit your mistake, and still support Trump — well I predict you folks will get something you didn’t bargain for — and it will hurt.

To use Trump’s favorite Twitter word: Sad.

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 (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

Steve Chapman (who?) doesn’t know the difference Thursday, Jan 12 2017 

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

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I’ll answer the title question, now: Steve Chapman is a member of the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board. He blogs at http://www.chicagotribune.com/chapman. His Email is: chapman@chicagotribune.com. His Twitter is: @SteveChapman13.

Here is what he looks like:

And here is what he wrote for today’s newspaper. It received 2/3 of a page in the Opinions section:

Runaway deficits forever
Trump and Congress won’t balance the budget

Immediately, the word “Runaway” tells us this is going to be an exercise in ignorance. The deficits aren’t going to be “insufficient,” “economically stimulating,” “or necessary,” all of which would be correct.

No, they will be “Runaway,” implying not just large, but out of control.

Upon becoming House speaker in 1995, Newt Gingrich decided it was crucial to adopt a plan to eliminate the federal deficit. In a meeting of House Republicans, Budget Committee Chairman John Kasich balked. “Where is it in stone that we have to balance the budget in seven years?”

Gingrich had a quick answer: “Let’s put it to a vote. Who wants to put it in stone?” Everyone but Kasich voted yes. The Republicans had made a commitment they would have to keep.

Translation: The Republicans promised to reduce the amount of stimulus money the federal government will pump into the private sector. Yes, they promised to reduce the amount of money they will add to business balance sheets and to consumers’ pockets.

Why is this considered something to boast about?

It’s like promising to take away millions of Americans’ health care. It’s like promising to rig state elections by rampant gerrymandering. It’s like promising to make it harder for minorities to vote. It’s like promising to elect a President whose every word seems to be a lie and/or an attack on the media, the disabled, women, Mexicans, Muslims and all who disagree with him.

See a pattern to their promises?

Contrast that show of determination with the vote last week by Senate Republicans for a budget resolution that projects an increase in the public debt of $9 trillion over the next decade.

The supporters said that for arcane reasons involving budget rules and the repeal of Obamacare, the resolution is needed. But in practice, they insisted, they don’t intend to allow such a flood of red ink.

Just to make this abundantly clear:
1. The federal government cannot run short of dollars.
2. You can run short of dollars.
3. The federal government’s “red” ink is the economy’s “black” ink

“So,” you might ask, “why would anyone want the economy to receive fewer dollars, while the federal government keeps more dollars, when it’s the economy that needs more dollars to grow, while the federal government creates all the dollars it needs?”

Why, indeed.

The fiscal responsibility upheld by Gingrich and company — which led to a balanced budget not in 2002 but in 1999 — is not visible on either side of the aisle today.

That so-called “fiscal responsibility” led to the recession of 2002. 

Between 2009 and 2015, the deficit shrank from $1.4 trillion to $438 billion — but last year it rose, and the Congressional Budget Office expects it to balloon to $1 trillion by 2024.

Chapman “forgot” to mention that in 2008, the deficit rose dramatically, which cured the recession that came as a result of deficit cutting from 2006 to 2008.

He also forgot to mention that every depression in U.S. history, and most recessions, have been introduced with deficit reduction.

Just a slight omission.

Nor is the incoming president likely to accept serious budget discipline as President Bill Clinton did.

President Clinton’s budget “discipline” led to the recession of 2001. (See graph above).

On the contrary, Donald Trump will probably cause a lot of congressional Republicans to stop worrying and learn to love the deficit.

Ah, if only the Republicans (and the Democrats) were that smart.  Everyone, including the public, should stop worrying and learn to love the deficit, for it is the deficit that grows Gross Domestic Product.

GDP = Federal spending + Non-federal spending + Net exports

If GDP growth relies on federal spending, non-federal spending and exports, which of those three comes from federal deficit spending. I’ll give you two guesses.

Right, federal spending comes from federal deficit spending.  That’s a tautology.

And non-federal spending, which is enriched by deficit spending, also grows from federal deficit spending.

So is there any mystery why federal deficit spending grows the economy?

House Republicans have a plan to balance the budget by 2026, but the details are lacking. Not only that, but they also will have to contend with the next president. The Tax Policy Center in Washington reported in October that his proposals would add $7.2 trillion to the government debt over the next decade — comparable to what has been piled up in the past eight years.

Chapman says the Republicans predict $9 trillion. He also says The Tax Policy Center predicts $7.2 trillion.  What’s a lousy $2 trillion, when you’re piling on the bull dung?

Trump’s promises have proven to be as reliable as a hormonal teenager’s, “I’ll love you forever” promise.

And $7.2 trillion debt growth over 10 years isn’t nearly enough. It would amount to a debt growth of about 50%. Compare that with the last decade — 2007-2017 — in which federal debt grew almost 300% — and it wasn’t enough.

In short, Chapman is trying to alarm you about what amounts to comparatively slow debt (and GDP) growth, when faster growth is needed.

(Yes, debt growth isn’t the same as deficit growth. We explain that in numerous other posts. But, since Chapman mixes the two, we’re trying to work from his logic.) 

There are other alarming signs. Trump’s border wall with Mexico will cost $8 billion by his calculation and double or triple that by other estimates. He claims Mexico will pay for it. But he and Congress aren’t prepared to wait for him to get the money. They plan to start construction now and send Mexico the bill.

Plenty of money for a ridiculous wall, but not enough money to fund healthcare for the poor. Perfect.

This is the equivalent of taking out a loan that you plan to pay off with the lottery ticket you just bought. In the best (and least plausible) case, we’ll have to wait awhile for the Mexican treasury to cut the check — “a year or a year and a half,” Trump blithely estimated at his news conference Wednesday.

Federal financing is not “equivalent” to personal financing.

This is Trump at his best. He has absolutely no idea what he is talking about, so he gives a cockamamie “year or year and a half,” knowing his backers don’t want or even expect him to tell the truth.

There is Trump and there is the Truth, and ne’er the twain shall meet.

(Ask Trump backers why they settle for lies, and you will receive a one-word answer: “Hillary.” Everything is excused by saying, “Hillary.” When Trump’s Presidency proves to be a horrifying disaster, the Trump-lovers will say, “Hillary would have been worse.” Depend on it.)

In the worst case — which happens to be the one President Enrique Pena Nieto has embraced — we won’t get a single peso and American taxpayers will eat the expense.

No, American taxpayers will not eat any expense for the wall. The federal government does not use tax dollars to fund federal spending. It does not use tax dollars for anything.

Even if all tax collections fell to $0, the federal government could build a dozen walls, plus fund Social Security and Medicare for every man, woman, and child in America, and still not run short of dollars, while controlling inflation.

So go ahead, Donald, build your dopey wall. The money will grow the economy, so long as you don’t cut other spending.

Anyway, either Chapman is ignorant of this fact or he is lying.  Take your choice.

Scrapping the Affordable Care Act, it turns out, would be a fiscal loser overall because of the taxes it imposed and the Medicare savings it implemented. The bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget recently reported that a full repeal would add between $150 billion and $350 billion to the debt over the next 10 years.

I favor scrapping ACA and replacing it with fully funded Medicare for every man, woman, and child in America. (See Step #2 of the “Ten Steps to Prosperity,” below.) You should, too.

Under a fiscally responsible approach, the CRFB advised, “savings from repealing parts of the ACA must be large enough to not only finance repeal of any of ACA’s offsets, but also to pay for whatever ‘replace’ legislation is put forward. This is not an easy task, and it will likely require policymakers to retain or replace the majority of ACA’s health and revenue offsets.”

Let’s make the above paragraph easier to understand. It very simply means: “We plan to screw the middle classes and the poor.”

Clear enough?

But Congress and the president-elect appear to have every intention of torching the ACA now and fighting the budget fire later. Reducing taxes soon while pledging to cut spending eventually is a familiar tactic, and it functions reliably to enlarge budget problems rather than solve them.

Translation: “Enlarge budget problems” means: “Take fewer dollars out of the economy and add more dollars to the economy.”

This is a problem?

The ongoing retirement of the baby-boom generation puts great pressure on the budget, which has to cover more and more retirement checks and Medicare bills.

Another looming strain is the interest on the debt, which has been pleasantly manageable because interest rates have been so low. But they are bound to rise in the coming years, and if Trump gets his fiscal plans enacted, interest alone could cost taxpayers upward of $1 trillion a year a decade from now.

Both Congress and the president-elect have told Americans they will balance the budget. But that promise is written in sand.

Because the federal government never can run short of its own sovereign currency, there never, never, never is “great pressure” in the federal budget. Never.

This is a problem?

As for interest on the debt (i.e. T-securities), it benefits the public, especially T-security holders. If you own any T-bills, T-notes, or T-bonds, you benefit from interest. You will benefit even more, when rates are raised.

This is a problem?

I’ll tell you what the real problem is: Communicators like Steve Chapman either are ignorant of, or are lying about, the differences between federal finances (Monetary Sovereignty) and personal finances (monetary non-sovereignty).

Either way, columns like his are more harmful to America than the Russian hacking of our secrets. If the public ever figures that out, there will be a revolution.

At the beginning of this post, I’ve given you Chapman’s contact information.  Tell him what you think.

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