I have used this chart before. It shows that, presently, many of the most important economies of the world market have interest rates that have plunged below the zero lower bound.
This event is so unprecedented in economic history that no one knows what to make of it. Prior to a decade ago or so, no one even thought it possible that lenders would advance credit at a loss. But here we are.
If Marxist theorists need any further confirmation that fiat currency doesn’t behave like money, they need look no further than Germany bonds, where the yield curve out to 30 years is now negative. Just try explaining, on the basis of Marx’s labor theory of value, creditors who lend their capital to the German state with the firm expectation they will incur a loss.
The only explanation that makes sense to me is that they are trying to avoid bigger losses of capital elsewhere. They accept a loss on the capital they lend to the Germany state to avoid losing more, or even all, of their capital elsewhere. In a commodity money regime, this situation could not happen. Alongside interest rates falling to zero, gold would be withdrawn from circulation into hoards. The two movements are driven by the same phenomenon — the falling rate of profit, which produces an ever growing mass of superfluous capital.
Not to speak ill of the dead, but Wright was an idiot.
Erik Olin Wright, MaxPo Lecture:
“I don’t give any particular reverence to anything Marx had to say about anything because it would be quite astounding that someone in the middle of the nineteenth century would have properly analysed the contradictions of capitalism in the 21st century to understand what the dilemmas of its transformation and its emancipatory transcendence might be.”
“The motion of a rocket from the surface of the Earth to a landing on the Moon can be explained and described by physical principals discovered over 300 years ago by Sir Isaac Newton. Newton worked in many areas of mathematics and physics. He developed the theories of gravitation in 1666, when he was only 23 years old. Some twenty years later, in 1686, he presented his three laws of motion in the ‘Principia Mathematica Philosophiae Naturalis.'”
In December of last year, I speculated that the Fed is playing games with the economy in order to tank it just prior to the 2020 elections. I further speculated that Powell may be doing this in order to ensure that Trump loses the election.
Now, former New York Federal Reserve chief Dudley adds his view that the Federal Reserve Bank has a duty to manage United States politics as well as its economy:
There’s even an argument that the election itself falls within the Fed’s purview. After all, Trump’s reelection arguably presents a threat to the U.S. and global economy, to the Fed’s independence and its ability to achieve its employment and inflation objectives. If the goal of monetary policy is to achieve the best long-term economic outcome, then Fed officials should consider how their decisions will affect the political outcome in 2020.
What you are looking at in the chart below is likely the most frightening chart available to economists today: 10 year benchmark long-term government bond yields for Germany, France, Switzerland and Japan. The chart shows that yields for each of these countries has reached or broken through the dreaded zero-lower-bound.
I think, the implications of this chart are that most advanced economies of the world market are now firmly trapped in a deflationary death spiral.
If Donald Trump were not president, economists would be losing their minds about right now. The reason they would be losing their minds is simple: the above chart shows that monetary policy is dead and U.S. allies have no real tools at their disposal to fight the onrushing catastrophe. Without a massive fiscal stimulus on order of World War II, the United States will quickly follow its allies into the abyss.
But a massive fiscal stimulus package at this time would guarantee the reelection of Donald Trump and no one wants that. So they have their fingers crossed.
One thing I hate are people who badmouth Accelerationism as this guy, J. Moufawad-Paul does at about 14:20 into this podcast:
The professor knows, or should know, that Marx said of capital that its historical mission “is unconstrained development in geometrical progression of the productivity of human labour.”
Marx also proposed that the proletariat, if it comes to power, should, “use its political supremacy to wrest, by degree, all capital from the bourgeoisie, to centralise all instruments of production in the hands of the State, i.e., of the proletariat organised as the ruling class; and to increase the total productive forces as rapidly as possible.”
If this is not accelerationism, as it is currently defined by its opponents and advocates alike, I do not know what is.
Professor Moufawad-Paul need to pick up a book and read it sometime. He just might learn something new.
When Elizabeth Warren claimed to be the descendant of native Americans, everyone naturally scoffed.
When Barack Obama claimed to be African American few questioned his claim despite the fact everyone knew he was not the descendant of African slaves, but a descendant of a gentleman from Kenya.
To be clear, I do not mean in any way to disparage Barack Obama’s father. Nor Barack Obama himself, beyond what he deserves based on his own history, not that of his father. I simply point out that Barack traces his lineage to Africa in a different way than I and millions of Black People do. And this is important to keep in mind.
What I do mean to point out is that it is a peculiarity of racism in America that a people, African Americans, descendants of Africans brought here in chains as slaves and forced to build this country, are always conflated with the color of their skin. They and the millions of other African immigrants, who, like Obama’s father, came to this country after slavery had long ended, have been subject to racial antipathy that attaches itself to this conflation of a people with a skin color.
Black is not a skin color. My mother was black. She could have passed for white on any street in America.
The result of this conflation is that someone like Barack Obama, who has no direct connection to the experience of African Americans, can be sourced as a reference allegedly to speak for African Americans, although his actual connection to African Americans is through his mother’s family to slave masters:
“You know, once again I find myself in the same position as President Obama, we both oppose reparations, and both are the descendants of slave holders,” McConnell said, after he was asked if a report from NBC that his relatives were slave holders changed his views about reparations.
Barack Obama is completely entitled to his opinion on reparations. He is an American and his opinion counts the same as Mitch McConnell’s.
He is not entitled to have a part in our debate as African Americans, nor is that pig, Kamala Harris.
I have been reading a series of essays by the Australian economist Peter Cooper on the alleged compatibility between Marx’s labor theory of value and modern monetary theory, which he has given the title, Marx and MMT. In particular I have been studying this particular essay, Part 1: Three Kinds of Macro Variables, which purports to show consistencies between Marx’s approach and modern money theory.
Needless to say, I am not impressed.
Peter borrows heavily from the TSSI school, who employ the so-called MELT approach to money as a substitute for Marx’s own theory of money. Here is the problem with the so-called monetary expression of labor time employed by the TSSI school as a substitute for Marx’s theory of money:
In the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, during the month of May, 2019, approximately 162.6 million workers were employed. The BLS also estimates that, on average, these employed workers worked about 34.4 hours each week. This amounts to a total of 5.6 billion hours of labor time per week.
Does this mean that the value produced by these workers amounts to the equivalent of 5.6 billion hours of labor?
Perhaps, but how would we know?
For the convenience of my readers, the full, uncut disaster that is the Sanders’s campaign in its full horrifying scope.