Klavan: Gloom Begone!

Tuesday, January 8, AD 2013

 

 

Andrew Klavan writes a column and notes reasons for optimism in our winter of discontent:

1. Fracking. As I’ve said before, Obama and the EPA will ultimately be splatter on the windshield of this progress. There’s energy in them thar hills and eventually we’re going to get at it, whether these luddite environmental knuckleheads like it or not. That means wealth, energy independence, jobs, power and a reboot of Dallas. Obama may be choosing decline, but the rest of the country may well choose prosperity and growth in spite of him.

2. Federalism. Around the country, conservative governors are taking action that could galvanize reform nationwide. Right-to-work laws, state budget cuts, reduced property taxes and creative approaches to education. As prosperity follows these practices — and abandons California and Illinois and other lagging states — they will gain credence with the general population and make political stars of the governors who supported them.

3. Reality is on our side. When I call Obama a reactionary, what I mean is that he adheres to a grievance-based socialist ideology he learned in college from professors who were probably old even then. As these academics die and go to hell for all eternity, up-and-comers may begin to notice that the poor suffer under left-wing programs and rise under the free market, that education improves under conservative guidance and gets worse under liberals, and that big business actually gets more entrenched and powerful under the left while the right helps the little guy thrive. That, after all, will be the off-beat, radical position, and academics love to be off-beat and radical as long as everyone around them is being off-beat and radical too. A new generation is already on the rise that understands entitlements are unsustainable and that freedom works. It won’t be long at all before we begin to hear their voices in the mainstream. I hope.

Continue reading...

21 Responses to Klavan: Gloom Begone!

  • In addition to point 1 on fracking for oil and gas above, we should also mine coal and build new nuclear power plants based on a thorium-232 / uranium-233 fuel cycle. With the gas and oil from fracking, and with energy from new nukes applied to the Fischer-Tropsch process of producing liquid fuels out of coal, we won’t need Saudi oil and can tell the Islamists to go drown in their mineral slime.

  • I really wonder how long it will take mindless American traitors to realize they made the worst mistake in our entire history with the reelection of a socialist president. I expect Gloom to really deepen in the new year.

  • I am sincerely sorry.

    I am positively pessimistic. I can’t talk about it with my sons. They will suffer.

    It all has been shoved too far down the rat-hole. The Obama gang set out to destroy the evil, unjust private sector and they killed the “goose that lays the golden eggs.”

    The vile imbeciles re-elected the destroyer ensuring it cannot be resurrected.

    The gutless GOP House majority now is smaller.

    And, worse, GOP House leadership are equally as bad borrowers/spenders, e.g., their surrender in the so-called “fiscal cliff” deal.

    I see no way they can do any better on needed spending cuts and the debt ceiling curtailments in two months.

    God gave us memory so we could have jobs in 2014.

  • “And, worse, GOP House leadership are equally as bad borrowers/spenders, e.g., their surrender in the so-called “fiscal cliff” deal.”

    I have read that many times on conservative sites T. Shaw and it is rubbish. If the Republicans had done nothing severe tax increases would have been imposed on the American public. Now the Republicans have made permanent the Bush tax cuts for 98% of American taxpayers and solved the problem of the Alternative Minimum Tax be having it finally pegged to inflation. In regard to spending cuts I am disappointed but not surprised. With the Democrats in control of the Senate, the best the Republicans can do is to attempt to block new spending and I believe they will do that. So there will be no new trillion dollar “stimulus” and Obama can forget about Congress allocating large funds for new programs. In the wake of an unnerving defeat in November I actually believe the Republicans haven’t done too bad so far.

    My kids are 21, 21 and 17. I refuse to be pessimistic about the future of their country, and as long as I live I will fight to brighten that future. Woe is me pessimism is a luxury I cannot afford.

  • I like Donald’s sense of hope even if I do not always feel it: “My kids are 21, 21 and 17. I refuse to be pessimistic about the future of their country, and as long as I live I will fight to brighten that future. Woe is me pessimism is a luxury I cannot afford.”

    All we have to do to prosper is repent. As I have repeatedly commented before, we have access to enough natural resources – uranium, thorium, coal, gas, etc. – for a more than adequate supply of low cost energy essential to a thriving technological society. God has been exceedingly generous towards us. That isn’t the problem. Rather, man’s attitude and rebellion are the problem. I see signs of that reversing as Life Site News now says 83% of Americans want restrictions for abortion, and as the militant homosexual movement starts revealing itself for what it really is. So maybe Donald’s sense of hope is justified. Besides, isn’t despair a sin?

    I can believe that pessimist me just wrote all that.

  • “If the Republicans had done nothing severe tax increases would have been imposed on the American public. Now the Republicans have made permanent the Bush tax cuts for 98% of American taxpayers and solved the problem of the Alternative Minimum Tax be having it finally pegged to inflation. In regard to spending cuts I am disappointed but not surprised.”

    Thing is Obama will take credit for both and the GOP will be more than happy to allow that. Before you say, “Who cares who gets the credit for it?” consider that the propaganda war is an essential battleground of this war and for too long the GOP has conceded this to the Dems, to the detriment of the conservative movement and the country. And there are defintely ways the republicans can do a better job in the propaganda department. For one, they can go on offense and demonstrate the alarming disparity in what we spend on entitlement programs and what is actually received by the recipient. We can propose that we can maintain levels of benefits while cutting overall spending on these programs. Responses to State of the Union addresses and Saturday radio messages can be good venues for starters. A repeated articulate simplified explanation will do well. But to expect immediate results would be foolish. After all, the prediciment we are in now is the result of an aggressive and incremental push by the left over the last 100 years. So, we need to look furhter down the road. Getting young conservatives like Rubio and Cruz, for starters, as our spokesmen would be a good idea. Ryan, in my view, while good where he is at, is too much of a wonk and not really able to convey these things in simple terms. Besides, I think he has demonstrated he is too beholden to the GOP establishment. And we have to stop being afraid to demonize the demons for crying out loud! This, “there ain’t no good guy there ain’t no bad guy. There’s only you and me and we just diagree (my apologies to Dave Mason)” approach has got to go. It is killing us.

    Another thing is there needs to be an effort aimed at encouraging young conservatives to consider careers in the Federal Departments that control our government. We can talk about cutting spending all we want (and yes I agree we need to cut spending) but if the leftists who control these governemnt bureaucracies are still able to determine how the money is being spent, the probelm will not just not get better, but will get much worse.

    “With the Democrats in control of the Senate, the best the Republicans can do is to attempt to block new spending and I believe they will do that. So there will be no new trillion dollar “stimulus” and Obama can forget about Congress allocating large funds for new programs.”

    With baseline budgeting, spending automatically goes up eight percent anyway. There should at least be a propaganda campaign with a view towards repealing it. Ever notice that when the Dems lose elections, they don’t give up on their agenda? They just continue pusuing it with even more vigor. Maybe one day it will dawn on the republicans that they would do well to do the same. But as it stands right now, we lose even when we win.

    In the wake of an unnerving defeat in November I actually believe the Republicans haven’t done too bad so far.

  • With noting to add to the conversation, I looked for a word to describe the video and Robert A. Rowland’s word: “mindless” works.

    Greg Mockeridge: Paul Ryan has maintained his integrity. I believe you underestimate him.

  • what’s the point of calling Obama a reactionary as if that’s a more stinging remark than picking apart his doctrinaire liberalism? it reminds me of how the word “fascist” is abused. why this need to appropriate rhetoric from the Left. i don’t care if something’s “reactionary” as in it’s old established opinion, i just care if it’s right or not. being pedantic i know, just certain semantics i’m not a fan of

    anyway the GOP will win presidential elections in the future, sure. the question though is whether it will continue to exist in its current form, or whether someone like Jon Huntsman will come along and transform it into a less conservative party that has policy differences but no deep philosophical disagreement with the Left.

  • “Greg Mockeridge: Paul Ryan has maintained his integrity. I believe you underestimate him.”

    I wasn’t saying anything one way or the other abgout Ryan’s integrity. It’s just that he goes along with the GOP leadership when push really comes to shove. He probably does so because he thinks it’s the prudent thing to do. And an argument can be made for that. In any event, ma main point is that Ryan is not a leading movement conservative. He is good right where he is, heading up the Budget Committee in the House.

  • “what’s the point of calling Obama a reactionary”

    For the sake of accuracy. Obama is the tail end of welfare state liberalism, a movement that is manifestly coming to an end. He has no new ideas to salvage it and is unconcerned that the funding of it simply does not not exist. “Apres moi le deluge” might as well be Obama’s personal motto.

    “the question though is whether it will continue to exist in its current form, or whether someone like Jon Huntsman will come along and transform it into a less conservative party that has policy differences but no deep philosophical disagreement with the Left.”

    The GOP will be the conservative party, or another conservative party will arise to displace it. THe RINO wing of the party has actually never been weaker.

  • Greg Mockerigde: ” In any event, my main point is that Ryan is not a leading movement conservative.”
    Paul Ryan did support the Right to Life and our founding principles at the RNC, and it appears these principles may be found in his work. My reference to his integrity, is to these points.

    Donald McCleary: “The GOP will be the conservative party, or another conservative party will arise to displace it. THe RINO wing of the party has actually never been weaker.”
    This is absolutely true. You are correct, Donald.

  • “The GOP will be the conservative party, or another conservative party will arise to displace it. THe RINO wing of the party has actually never been weaker.”

    But at this point it’s the RINO wing that controls the party.

  • I have read that many times on conservative sites T. Shaw and it is rubbish. If the Republicans had done nothing severe tax increases would have been imposed on the American public. Now the Republicans have made permanent the Bush tax cuts for 98% of American taxpayers and solved the problem of the Alternative Minimum Tax by having it finally pegged to inflation. In regard to spending cuts I am disappointed but not surprised. With the Democrats in control of the Senate, the best the Republicans can do is to attempt to block new spending and I believe they will do that. So there will be no new trillion dollar “stimulus” and Obama can forget about Congress allocating large funds for new programs. In the wake of an unnerving defeat in November I actually believe the Republicans haven’t done too bad so far.

    Thank you, Donald! I have seen very few conservative commentators make these points, but I agree completely. Of course I would have preferred an even better fiscal cliff deal, but I think that the deal we got is just about the best that anyone should have realistically expected considering we have a Democrat-controlled Senate and Obama in the White House, and considering that the tax cuts were originally implemented with an automatic expiration date.

    If Congress had done nothing, the tax situation would have been much worse. At least many of the Bush tax cuts were extended — and not only temporarily but permanently. Of course, Congress could raise the tax rates in the future, but now the tax rates will not be raised automatically at some point in the future. So as long as conservative Repulicans control at least one house of Congress or the presidency, a major tax increase is unlikely.

    I think that the Republican caucus in the House and Senate got the best deal that they could get, and I hope to be able to say the same about the spending battle that is coming up soon.

  • “But at this point it’s the RINO wing that controls the party.”

    Disagree Greg. The only reason Romney was nominated was due to conservatives forming a cirular firing squad, too many no-hopers (Yeah, Michele Bachmann was going to be President.) running and Romney’s cash advantage. If Perry hadn’t self destructed Romney would have gotten an early start on his retirement from politics.

    The GOP controls more states now than at anytime since the twenties. (After the 1976 election the Republicans controlled one state.) Most of those state Republican parties are dominated by conservatives.

  • the thing about the RINO vs. true-blue conservative dichotomy is that it’s not always clear what the latter is supposed to be.

    my view on this may be a little “out-of-touch” in that it’s filtered through certain conservative blogs (not talking this one,) but there seems to be a not-insignificant number of self-proclaimed true-believers who dislike the cultural conservative aspect of the party as much as the RINO consultants. they’re hardcore anti-Obamaites but their conservatism seems to be of a generic anti-government sort. the liberal “Randian right” meme was overdone but it does appear to be true in certain strains of thought, this framing of government as the Great Oppressor, every issue talked about in 10th amendment terms, and no real vision laid out for what an ideal conservative government would do.

    as far as politicians i thought the dichotomy was overdone this last year. i’m not gonna gloss over his chameleon political style but Romney was the best of a weak field. other candidates had flaws that were totally separate from whether they were moderate or conservative, as he did. a “true conservative” would’ve been able to do better than him based on political talent and general appeal, the latter of which doesn’t have to = pivoting to the center.

  • Umm, Donald, the RINOs control the party at the national level and that’s what really counts. Romney get the nomination because he was the next in line. The only reason why Santorum got as far as he did is because he was the last not-Romney standing. He wasn’t even on the radar until after the other not-Romney hopefuls fizzled out.

  • the “RINO” vs. true argument seems to boil down to generic “fight harder” sentiment, not meaningful policy differences (though of course there’s occasional exceptions)

    i roll my eyes at “GOP is sooooo extreme these days” rhetoric but it’s definitely true that the parties have become much more ideologically distinct

  • “Romney get the nomination because he was the next in line.”

    No he got the nomination because he got more votes in the primaries due to a fragmented conservative field, his money advantage and because Rick Santorum could not exercise message discipline.

  • But at this point it’s the RINO wing that controls the party.

    The RINO discourse is silly and should cease. When you are the Republican presidential nominee, you define what an authentic Republican is. The term would not have made sense in any circumstance. Prior to about 1980, the parties had programmatic tendencies, but programmatic preferences were not a boundary condition. There was a difference in priorities, associations, and sensibility that made Thomas E. Dewey distinct from Tip O’Neill; neither was spurious in his affiliations. The odd exception to this was Jacob Javits, who enrolled as a Republican and made his career within the Republican Party at the recommendation of the president of the Hatters Union, who told him he would be more utile to them as a Republican than in any other venue. His preferred affiliation was with the American Labor Party and its successor, the Liberal Party of New York.

    If you can find a politician whose affiliation is purely opportunistic – and Robert Dole did once say he enrolled as a Republican because they exceeded the number of Democrats by a margin of two-to-one in his home county – that would be a RINO. The thing is, who would that be? Olympia Snowe may be an irritant, but her portfolio of expressed preferences would be troublesome to Senate Democratic whips as well. Robert Dole, Capitol Hill apparatchik though he was, was a pure product of the old-line, rural, impecunious bourgeoisie. That social stratum is very foreign to the post-1980 national Democratic Party, and Dole’s most salient preference was a distaste for public-sector borrowing. Mitt Romney is opportunistic, but would an unalloyed opportunist have attempted to build a political career in Massachusetts as a Republican?

  • In the above mindless video, in a low and subdued voice, almost subliminal suggestion, Obama claims to be “like Jesus.” Wish that he were.

  • No he got the nomination because he got more votes in the primaries due to a fragmented conservative field, his money advantage and because Rick Santorum could not exercise message discipline.

    The political parties might consider attempting to rid themselves of the interminable idiot media donnybrook and hold their caucuses and primaries the 3d week of June. Hold the conventions in August and decide the nominee there. We might just be able to break the candidate-centered process and have the selection repair to local elected officials and county chairmen, re-introduce an element of peer review and deliberation into the choice (no more B.O.s), and curtail the advantage the current process gives to knuckleheads inclined to career around Iowa and New Hampshire for 18 hours a day for 18 months to the exclusion of gainful employment. William Scranton’s candidacy in 1964 lasted all of two months. More of that, please.

Of Trillion Dollar Coins, Prancing Unicorns and Paul Krugman

Tuesday, January 8, AD 2013

 

 

 

I have written before of a truly wacked out nostrum popular among bloggers on the Left in this country to have a coin minted with a trillion dollar value in order to “solve” the debt crisis.  Go here to read my post on the subject.  Now economist Paul Krugman, Nobel laureate and barking mad Leftist moonbat, has endorsed the proposal:

Enter the platinum coin. There’s a legal loophole allowing the Treasury to mint platinum coins in any denomination the secretary chooses. Yes, it was intended to allow commemorative collector’s items — but that’s not what the letter of the law says. And by minting a $1 trillion coin, then depositing it at the Fed, the Treasury could acquire enough cash to sidestep the debt ceiling — while doing no economic harm at all.

So why not?

It’s easy to make sententious remarks to the effect that we shouldn’t look for gimmicks, we should sit down like serious people and deal with our problems realistically. That may sound reasonable — if you’ve been living in a cave for the past four years.Given the realities of our political situation, and in particular the mixture of ruthlessness and craziness that now characterizes House Republicans, it’s just ridiculous — far more ridiculous than the notion of the coin.

Continue reading...

32 Responses to Of Trillion Dollar Coins, Prancing Unicorns and Paul Krugman

  • Actually, that authority (set the values of coins) is (Constitution) reserved to Congress.

    Common sense is subversion.

    Out of control class war spending led to ruinous deficits. Democrats and the lying, vile media/propaganda arm are running the country to the ground with ever more humongous government spending that requires ever more ruinous borrowing to fund ever more spending, etc. ad infinitum; and the Federal Reserve aids and abets this insanity as it keeps real interest rates negative and monetizes (prints dollars) the debt. This destroys the people’s wealth.

    Now, they want to coin a trillion dollar platinum piece to repay a part of the gargantuan debt: insane. How does this differ from printing a trillion bill?

    And, they are no better. Last week, the cowardly GOP refused to stop lunatic tax hikes but agreed to keep disastrous borrowing/spending.

    The truth is treason.

  • Pixie dust for everyone!
    If the imposters in Washington go through with this what could loom around the corner?
    Maybe a presidential wand that would transform Republicans into Democrats….wait, that already exists.

  • Oh! Paul krugman is a crazy person with credentials. That he was awarded a Nobel prize tells more about the Nobel prize than about the lunatic.

  • Krugman actually did do some very good academic work on trade and specialization which was the basis for his Nobel price, but he hasn’t done much of any real academic work in 10+ years, now he’s a talking head and an increasingly crazy one. That he is endorsing the trillion dollar coin idea is arguably a new low even for him.

    One of the deeply troubling things is that this line of thinking (that it’s utterly hopeless to try to govern the country in cooperation with the opposing party so it’s better to look for ways to subvert the law in order to govern without dealing with the other half of the country) has become increasingly standard on the left in recent years.

  • “(that it’s utterly hopeless to try to govern the country in cooperation with the opposing party so it’s better to look for ways to subvert the law in order to govern without dealing with the other half of the country) has become increasingly standard on the left in recent years.”

    A similar spirit prevailed in the latter half of the 1850’s Darwin. I trust we will benefit from our history during that cataclysmic time, but considering how widespread historical illiteracy is now I fear that such may not be the case.

  • And yet the US Treasury 10 year yield is 1.87% (1.31% after tax) and the 2-year is at 27 basis points.

    Given inflation at 1.8%, this means that people are prepared to pay for the privilege of lending money tot he US government, when they could buy investment grade corporate stocks at a forward earnings yield of 8%. They could even buy the S & P at a dividend yield of 2.2% (1.87% after tax) and a maximum tax rate of only 15%, against 30% for Treasuries and that does not count the rest of the earnings.

    Too much government debt? Investors obviously do not think so – Not if they are prepared to buy it at those sort of yields.

  • Krugman did some slipshod academic work on trade a few years back, that has been largely overtaken by game theory and microeconomic modeling. His theories revolved around countries erecting trade barriers on an item but never took into account that other countries might respond to those trade barriers. Then he started criticizing Bush in the NYT and won a Nobel prize.

  • Pingback: Klavan: Gloom Begone! | The American Catholic
  • Not defending Krugman here, but what theory of money do you subscribe to Mr. McClarey? What about a trillion dollar coin is like a unicorn?

    I don’t like that it basically enables a way around the Congressional budgeting process, but I do like that it makes plain that the U.S. government, as a currency issuer, is much different than a household or EMU member–currency users.

    You must understand monetary operations of the Fed and Treasury before you compare them to mythical creatures.

    Doing so would also enable you to better guide public policy toward the common good. Instead, you are letting “leftists” use their better understanding of government monetary operations to seek their own purposes.

    It is not so much your philosophy that I quibble with, or your desire for less government, it is your understanding of money and particularly the monetary operations of currency issuers that I find lacking.

  • “What about a trillion dollar coin is like a unicorn?”

    They are both myths Alex. A trillion dollar coin does not create a trillion dollars of value. It merely adversely impacts the currency already in existence, which I believe is about a trillion, seven hundred billion. It puts us firmly on the path of Zimbabwe and Weimar Germany. Money supply cannot be divorced from economic strength, and attempts to do so are usually disastrous.

  • Someone had to be the first commenter that thinks the proposal has validity.

    Who will be paid with the $1,000,000,000,000 coin? China? the Fed? the Social Security Trust fund? And, who will accept it in exchange thereafter and for what amount of value?

    How is that different than printing a $1,000,000,000,000 paper greenback (not a Federal Reserve Note, denominations are not allowed of over a set amount)?

    An ounce of platinum is worth, I don’t know, say $900. BEing a gold bug: gold is about $1,650.

    How does stamping $1,000,000,000,000 on it make an ounce of plat worth/fair value more than $900 to a typically motivated, knowledgeable buyer?

    After WWI, France, et al imposed on Germany $34 billion in war reparations. The onerous debt was payable in gold or foreign currency so that Germany could not play the print paper marks/platinum/unicorn game. The debt led to Weimar inflation which contributed toi the rise of Hitler, the breakdown of German culture and morality, and WWII.

    I spent the past 36 years at high levels in the financial services industry. I know exactly how the banking, fiscal and monetary systems are supposed to work.

    I have no confidence that governments’ acceptance of paper/platinum in payment of taxes gives money value.

    Money (not US fiat) is a store of value which value is determined by typically motivated, knowledgeable/rational players in the economy each acting in his own best interests.

    Once the Federal Reserve Note (a debt instrimnent) loses the people’s confidence, it’s all over.

    Buy gold and silver; and pray that someone, somehow will save us from Obama’s and Bernanke’s sestructive economic policies.

  • That’s a lot to address, and it has been by MMT’ers. Most MMT’ers are progressives, but there are some who stick to descriptions of monetary operations and try to leave out the prescriptions. So please look into it from their perspective. They’ve studied the operations of the Fed and Treasury thoroughly and are quite aware of the potential for inflation and hyper inflation.

    Nothing about monetary operations is mythical. They may not always be the best for the common good, but they are very real. ‘Value’ is a philosophical musing and not one that can be answered exclusively by economic or material thinking. Money does not determine value, it is a measure of value, or rather an attempt at measuring value created by society. Just like inches measure distance, money measures debts and credits that facilitate trade of real things that we regard as having some value. So adding money (a la deficit spending or trillion dollar coins) without adding real goods can be inflationary, but only if that money uses up the real good capacity of the economy and then tries to use more. We will not have demand-pull inflation until then.

    Since we are below capacity and interest rates and inflation are historically low and haven’t budged, there is no reason to suspect hyperinflation any time soon, but that doesn’t mean we should ignore the possibility.

    If you want a healthy economy then you need a bigger deficit, you can even get smaller government by lowering spending and taxes and keep the deficit.

    Debt ceilings are arbitrary and useless. Debt-to-GDP ratio or overall level of debt does not matter for inflation, inflation depends on current spending vs. current capacity.

    Currency issuers can spend via trillion dollar coins, they are not mythical.

    Would you rather government spending serve the public purpose from the moral subjectivist point of view or would you rather it serve the public from the Catholic Social Teaching view of the common good?

    T. Shaw–
    The proposal has validity in that the White House can and will use it if necessary. That doesn’t mean it is necessarily a good thing, but it certainly isn’t a myth.

    Much of your claims are leftovers from the gold standard, which no longer exists. I regret that your 36 years of experience has not taught you otherwise.

    I come here and comment, not to trash your views, but to help you understand how monetary operations work, so that you can use that knowledge to better educate and pursue the common good. I feel quite alone as a Catholic in the MMT camp which is composed mostly of atheist, subjectivist, progressives. I share some of their desires, but contrast greatly with their philosophy and world views.

    We must understand money correctly to better make our case to the general public and to fellow Catholics and Christians who may be persuaded by progressives (with a correct understanding of money) because they care about about their own economic situation more than a good and moral society.

    We can have both a good society and a good economy, but only if we understand fiscal and monetary operations in a modern money society. Your understanding of money is outdated and no longer applies. I come in peace to share what I know so that we can work together.

    I engaged Darwin in a debate a little over a year ago over employment policy with the same intention. So please don’t dismiss me as a progressive trolling your blog. I read and comment because I care.

  • T. Shaw-
    “Your understanding of money is outdated and no longer applies.”
    I’ll use those exact words if I decide to stop paying on my loan.
    I’ll tell them Alex sez it’s all good.
    We have the “obamacoin.”

    The old adage applies: “If it sounds to good to be true it probably is.”

  • Alex-
    You sound sincere. How does it help the common good to use a loophole (coin) to wave away real debt. What are we teaching our future responsible citizens?

  • Alex,

    I desire the Virtue of Patience (Fourth Sorrowful Mystery – The Carrying of the Cross).

    The unicorn metaphor is less apt than the “ostrich head in the sand” metaphor.

    The hole they’ve dug is very deep. Some consequences are too horrid to contemplate. There is no easy, painless solution. There will be some sort of “great reset.” It could be apocalyptic.

    At some point the pedal hits the metal. The rubber meets the road.

    Think Zimbabwe.

    Think central planning, central control, and command economy. And, ponder how well that worked everywhere it was imposed.

    They abandoned the gold standard (invented by Isaac Newton: he also invented Calculus) and US inflation went ballistic (think jet fighter climbing near vertical). That’s an exaggeration.

    They replaced the GS with the PhD/idiot politician standard.

    We are going to learn (the hard way) that the delusions of credentialed crazy men and dishonest/idiotic politicians will be far worse for the common good than the GS and free market.

    Obama and his gang have pretty much destroyed everything: the economy, the dollar, the culture, common morals, and tragically the ties that once bound us as a nation.

    Eat, drink and be merry for in the near term the SHTF.

    If Obama (save us!) deigns in his plenipotentiary power, for the common good (the alibi of all tyrants) to coin a trillion dollar coin, will the coin weigh, say, 1,000,000,000 troy ounces, or will the market value of platinium meteorically rise to $1,000,000,000,000 a troy ounce?

    Er, why waste the platinum, just print a trillion-dollar bill. Put Michelle’s face on it.

    How do destroying the private sectior and debauching the currency advance the common good?

    I think your professors are ideologues (use “truth” to advance their opinions) and not scholars (seek the absolute truth).

    Here’s the reason they’re 24/7 talking about gun control and not the coming economic zombie apocalypse. The USA credit rating is AA- (when Egan-Jones dropped it from AA in Sep 2012 when they announced QEternity). That means the likelihood of a US default is about 10,000 times more likely than you will be shot by an assault weapon.

  • philip–
    your debt and the debt of the currency issuer are much different operationally. Currency issuers can always pay their debts denominated in the currency that they issue. Your not an issuer of the dollar, and so you don’t have that same ability. Being financially responsible means different things for currency users and currency issuers.

    There is no necessary financial constraint to a better economy. (Inflation is a real phenomenon not a nominal phenomenon. It comes when there isn’t enough capacity to meet aggregate demand). This isn’t “too good to be true”. Unemployment and low growth because of low demand is unnecessary, or is rather created by the currency issuer taxing too much for how much they spend. This doesn’t mean the end of suffering, or that we can have whatever we want, but it does mean that we don’t have to suffer from a poor economy induced by lack of demand.

    I am not in favor of the coin, but would prefer it to needlessly and voluntarily defaulting on our financial obligations. I would rather Congress repeal the debt ceiling as it serves no (economic) purpose and decide on a budget together. I would rather see lower taxes, especially highly regressive payroll taxes, and lower overall spending, especially in defense, with more spending on what government does best–infrastructure. It is not good to have to unilaterally use a loophole to prevent economic catastrophe, but neither is it good to cause it needlessly because we can’t get along or agree on anything.

    The common good involves both morality and economics, among other things. I find that leftists often care less about morality and conservatives want morally responsible economics but don’t understand just what exactly that means–mostly because of their poor understanding of monetary operations.

  • T. Shaw–

    You use a lot of metaphors and so it can be hard to know exactly just what you are saying. We can see inflation coming before it gets anywhere close to hyperinflation and have the tools to prevent it just as we have the tools to boost aggregate demand when it is low.

    We abandoned the gold standard because of the volatility it caused financial markets and the economy as a whole. The free market is way more unstable with a gold standard and without fiscal stabilizers.

    I, too, think many politicians and phD’s aren’t very bright or have some ulterior motives. Neither are very comforting.

    The coin is platinum because that’s what the loophole allows, at least that’s my understanding of it, but that doesn’t mean it will use $1 trillion dollars worth of platinum. No coin in the US is worth its weight in whatever metal its made out of–nominal value of coin doesn’t have to equal its real value. A trillion dollar platinum coin won’t do anything to the price of platinum.

    My professors may be ideologues, but they do have the monetary system right. Maybe as a scholar you should seriously consider learning it too so that we can pursue truth together and not let ideologues steer the country toward their end.

    I don’t know why you bring guns into this, but the probability of US default is zero, unless they voluntarily declare it (for example, by not minting the coin and not repealing the debt ceiling and thus hitting the ceiling) which I will grant you seems sort of likely, which is quite unfortunate since it is so unnecessary.

    As an aside, I must say that you speak in lots of hyperbole, so it is hard to take you seriously. I don’t know your profession and I know this is just a blog, not a paper, but as a teacher, I penalize my students heavily for speaking/writing in hyperbole. It is a tactic for fear-mongering or hate-mongering, and I do not tolerate it or respect it at all.

  • It is worth bearing in mind that there is no difference in principle between a government’s bond issue and its issue of currency notes, except that the latter are issued in smaller denominations and pay no interest to the holder.

    The central bank’s note issue is wholly or largely backed with government bonds and the more it holds, the more notes it can issue; in other words, it can print the notes necessary to cover the cost of purchasing the bonds.

    Besides, fractional reserve banking means that currency is the small change of commerce; the note issue has very little to do with the money supply.

  • Obama is President because George Bush ran up the debt with two unfunded wars, unfunded Medicare part B, and a tax cut for the wealthy. The “damage” has been surveyed. I think between you and Krugman I will go with the Nobel Prize winner. Some of these comments are funny, “He really hasn’t done much since…”. Can you say arm chair quarter back? There is a reason he writes for the times and you are writing a blog. Haha! The fed has had their boot on our neck since 1913. Only sheeple would hear the coin idea and freak out and sweat their panties wet. The money has ALREADY BEEN SPENT. IT’S ALREADY BEEN SPENT. What they are arguing about is whether or not to write the check to pay the bills that have already been incurred. So the argument that this will increase inflation is RIDICULOUS. Our country did best when we issued our own currency. I think some of you need a serious history brush up lesson.

  • “Obama is President because George Bush ran up the debt with two unfunded wars, unfunded Medicare part B, and a tax cut for the wealthy.”

    The shelf life of blaming Bush for the bad Obama economy ran out last year.

    “I think between you and Krugman I will go with the Nobel Prize winner.”

    A man making an idiotic suggestion who has a Nobel Prize is still a man making an idiotic suggestion.

    “There is a reason he writes for the times and you are writing a blog.”

    His lack of sanity and/or the lack of sanity of the powers that be at the Times?

    “Only sheeple would hear the coin idea and freak out”

    Actually those who have even a cursory knowledge of economic history would view this idea as bizarre and completely destructive tp the economy.

    “So the argument that this will increase inflation is RIDICULOUS.”

    Of course. Creating a trillion dollars out of thin air could not be inflationary because the prancing unicorns radiate an anti-inflationary aura. It all makes logical sense.

    “I think some of you need a serious history brush up lesson.”

    I think you need your first history lesson. You might start with the fate of the Continental Currency, the Confederate Currency and contemporary Zimbabwe.

  • Alex,

    The problem with ideologues masquerading as scholars is they poison young minds. You know what to think, not how to think. If you had that faculty you would disbelieve any validity in a $1,000,000,000,000 platinum coin.

    If you could, think supply and demand.

    The governments you prefer can print fiat money and make the serfs use it. Also, they can line up serfs against walls and shoot. And, fly drone over them and zap. It’s all the same: raw, unlimited power.

    Central planning, central control and command economies are not metaphors, they are actual historical crimes against humanity, which produced massive misery wherever imposed.

    {I deleted my qualifications. You don’t have a need to know.}

    My advice: never leave the classroom.

    d says:

    “Obama is President because George Bush ran up the debt with two unfunded wars, unfunded Medicare part B, and a tax cut for the wealthy.”

    Points of information:

    In the year before the financial bailouts/crisis, the deficit was reduced to $164 billion. Since then, deficits have been $1 trillion plus for five years (unbeleivably continuing three years after the recession ended in June 2009).

    In fact, Obama pretty much persisted in doing that which did Bush. And, BHO ran against John McCain, not George W. Bush.

    In fact, the two wars were funded by Congressional resolutions.

    In fact, at the time Part B (a liberal wet dream) was imposed, Medicare cash inflows were higher than outflows. In order to fund Part B, Bush would have raised the Medicaid tax. Are you in favor of higher payroll taxes?

    In fact, 85% of the Bush tax cuts benefited lower earners’ tax brackets (percentages). From day one, the shrieks of “Bush tax cuts for the rich” were compete lies fomented by lying, vile scum/journolists and only believed by Obama-worshiping idiots.

  • Flash from Tyler Durden at Zerohedge: The Central Bank of Mars has expressed interest in purchasing 100, $1,000,000,000,000.00 US platinum coins.

    “A small cadre of analysts suspect the Martian Central Bank naively believes the fantasy that the arbitrary creation of assets, either via platinum coins or electronic entries in the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet, creates actual value. Though this credulity borders on the fantastic, these analysts point to the many commentators in the U.S. who have bought into the platinum coin fantasy. If Paul Krugman et al. have swallowed the fantasy that something of real value can be created from nothing, then why not the Martian Central Bank?”

  • Interesting “Ace of Spades” read: “Enron and the Trillion Dollar Coin.”

    http://ace.mu.nu/archives/336406.php

  • Alinsky Rule #5:

    Recent Frank J. Fleming Tweet: “Mint a bunch of trillion$ coins and give 3 to the elven kings, 7 to the dwarf lords, and 9 to mortal men to rule them all!”

    I promise. I’ll stop, now.

  • T. Shaw–
    I do not know why you are so hostile.

    I reject the idea that I know only ‘what to think’, unless you think that my education at well respected Benedictine College taught me nothing.

    I also don’t accept everything my professors teach me–I am not an atheist, I am not a Marxist, and I am not a pragmatist. I am quite critical of all three.

    Despite my professors’ beliefs or ideologies, they are quite good at being open to competing ideas–I am the fourth student in the past 5 years to be writing a dissertation on Catholic Social Teaching at UMKC.

    So you can reject them and me out of hand if you like, but it doesn’t change the fact that you are wrong about money and until you take understanding it more seriously, you will be just an ideologue.

    I care too much to follow your advice. I will teach both in and out of the classroom.

  • It perhaps would take a while to go through all of your links. I find it interesting that the two page brief on CST linked at your site mentions nothing of the rights of people not to be made dependent on the govt., that excessive taxation not be placed on people, that subsidiarity is a function of lower levels of govt. and not of groups of persons and makes no mention that the rights of unions are limited by the common good.

    Another link talks about the errors to the “naturalistic” approach of, what is, Aquinas. Instead citing the integrated approach of De Lubac. Of course there are many, many theologians that think that De Lubac, and the political course that some take on these errors, is fundamentally wrong. In fact it seems that there is much left out that is in CST and that ultimately may be false in Catholic theology.

    Thus it seems that one may find your conclusions on a platinum trillion dollar coin to be only a prudential judgment of CST and perhaps even only marginally supported by Catholic theology.

  • Alex,

    I apologize. But, you commented that I don’t know squat.

    I don’t mean to reject you.

    I reject the Trillion Dollar Coin trope; and, concomitantly, anyone that thinks there is an iota of validity to this outrageous scam.

    Think the United States of Enron.

    Here goes.

    It is a tyrannical/unlimited government executive branch power-grab wherein the Executive, with no check or balance from the Legislative or the Judiciary, creates/prints one trillion in fiat money/Federal Reserve Notes/green confetti; exceeds the Congressionally-enacted legal debt limt, has another trillion to pay for power; etc.

    And, here is how it works to debase the currency and destroy the middle class.

    The President instructs the Secy. of the Treasury to mint a one-ounce platinum coin with $1 trillion stamped thereon. That piece of platinum (worth, say, $900 in the free market) is deposited at the Fed Bank of NY: debit cash, credit UST checking account. That is the same as when you deposit $900 in cash to your checking account, except you actually give your bank $900 in hard-earned cash. Here, again, the FRB credited the Treasury with $1,000,000,000,000 to spend from the Fed UST checking a/c for a deposited $900 piece of platinum. The Treasury then spends/distributes the $1 trillion to Federal agencies which spend it/give it to polkitically connected banks, crony capitalists and dependents. And, a $trillion more confetti is in the economy: almost none goes to the middle class .

    Here is how this destroys the middle class: largely, they don’t get any of the money (the politticially connected, lobbysists, super-rich, banks, and government dependents get the trillions) but if you earn what you eat, drive with or heat your home with prices rise (B.B. median family income declined each year since Obama took over). Each month more middle class families are ruined. They are going to runout of taxpayers.

    POOF! $1 trillion cash in the market place is created out of thin air. The same thing happens when the Fed directly (monetizes the debt) buys UST securities; debit UST security, credit UST checking account. Alternatively, Obama could order the Secy to print a $1 trillion FR Note OR print 1,000,000,000,000 ones. It’s all the same: printing money out of thin air.

    I don’t reject you. But, I can’t help noting your inability to recognize this massive excrement sandwich.

  • T Shaw

    But “monetising the debt” is simply substituting one instrument of debt for another.

    As I said earlier, there is no difference between a government bond and a currency note, except one pays interest and the other does not. Both are equally government liabilities

  • Michael PS:

    Absolutely, agree.

    The issues are inflation and somehow paying government liabilities.

    We do not have a convertible currency/government debt instruments, aka, liabilities, i.e., one that can be exchanged/redeemed by the issuer for something of value like gold or silver; or land.

    When they stopped issuing greenbacks, early in the last century, they exclusively went to Federal Reserve Notes. They also stopped redeeming “dollars” with UST debt instruments (instead of gold).

    So what backs the buck? Pick one or more: the “full faith and credit of the US Government” (power to issue more debt and confiscate/tax); and its power to print/coin and circulate ad infintum: like a trillion dollar ($900) coin.

    In addition, “monetising the debt” is much more than substituting one debt instrument for another. It is also creation of one debt instrument with another that is used as the national medium of exchange. If it” was substitution, there would be no increase in the amount of outstanding debt or dollars in the economy.

    This increase in “government liabilities” (likley soon to be green confetti) that are running about in the economy: adds inflationary pressures, which have been held in check because little of this created money gets into the hands of the middle class, whose median income is declining. Go figure.

    It’s similar to what happened in the recent housing bubble. Say you had a home with a $200,000 mortgage. The RE agent tells you your house is worth $600,000 and you can substitute your $200,000 mortgage note with a $500,000 mortgage note. If you did, you substituted that debt and put $300,000 in your picket to spend on a lake house, a yacht, BMW’s, etc. The probkem arises if you couldn’t afford the payments on $500,000 debt. Only difference from the US is you cannot repay the note with scrip your print.

  • T Shaw

    Nothing shows this more clearly than the Bank Return, issued by the Bank of England, every Thursday

    http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/publications/Documents/bankreturn/2013/130109ids.pdf

    The more Ways & Means Advances and Bonds & other securities are increased, the more notes can be issued.

    The converse is also true. Notes in circulation can be reduced by selling securities or other assets and holding the proceeds in the Banking Department.

    Also, compare the total note issue of £58bn with, say, the liabilities of Barclay’s Bank alone of £1,498bn – 25 times the whole of the note issue. RBS’s balance sheet is similar.

    That is what I mean by calling the currency (notes and coins) the small change of commerce.

  • Michael PS:

    Best regards,

    You and I cannot affect the decisions taken by unlimited/unchecked governments. We can rationally act in our own best interests.

    I’m overjoyed each day to roll out of bed, say my prayers, and note that the plumbing and etc. are still working.

Of Trillion Dollar Coins and Fiscal Lunacy

Friday, December 7, AD 2012

8 Responses to Of Trillion Dollar Coins and Fiscal Lunacy

  • Time to buy food for long-term storage.

  • Phillip,

    Amen!

    They can save the platinum. They don’t need to engrave two trillion bills, either. Ya’ know, it would have Saul Alinsky’s face on it!

    It’s all been 24/7 “Contol-P” at the Fed since 2008. In that time span, the Fed added approximately $2 trillion in assets and liabilities to its balance sheet.

    Now, they are in QEternity wherein each month, from now until the Second Coming of Christ, the Fed buys $40 billion in UST securities and $45 billion in MBS.

    It is all done “book entry.” The fed adds $40 billion to the UST’s checking account (liability) and adds $40 billion in UST securities to its assets. Voila!

    Weimar inflation – here we come.

    Liberals are idiots.

  • Minting two one-trillion dollar coins is thinking too small. I say, Fiant lucra!!

  • Inflation is usually the result of currency depreciation. The Federal Reserve steals from us by printing more money causing inflation. Further, they charge the US interest on US currency that it prints. The Federal Reserve Bank is a private corporation. Why is a private corporation allowed to print money or legal tender?

  • Three coins in the fountain…the fountain of youth….unicorns, unicorns!! It’s great to be a liberal.

  • But will the Chinese be happy with that?

  • As long as each coin weighs 18,275 tons, it’ll work just fine.

  • I’m sort-a interested in parallels between Obama’s/Geithner’s/Bernanke’s impending currency catastrophe and Weimar hyper-inflation. We may lower expectations catch up to Zimbabwe.

    In 1918, a German one mark gold coin was worth one mark. Brilliant, Shaw! Take another shot of Jameson’s.

    In 1923, that gold mark coin could be exchanged for 1,000,000,000 paper marks.