New IMF Paper Challenges Neoliberal Orthodoxy

Posted on by

While the IMF’s research team has for many years chipped away at mainstream economic thinking, a short, accessible paper makes an even more frontal challenge. It’s caused such a stir that the Financial Times featured it on its front page. We’ve embedded it at the end of this post and encourage you to read it and circulate it.

The article cheekily flags the infamous case of the Chicago Boys, Milton Friedman’s followers in Pinochet’s Chile, as having been falsely touted as a success. If anything, the authors are too polite in describing what a train wreck resulted. A plutocratic land grab and speculation-fueled bubble led quickly to a depression, forcing Pinochet to implement Keynesian policies, as well as rolling back labor “reforms,” to get the economy back on its feet.

The papers describes three ways in which neoliberal reforms do more harm than good.

Overly mobile capital, meaning unrestricted cross-border money flows. The IMF paper points out that while the neoliberals claim that freely mobile money helps growth, there’s not much concrete evidence to support that. By contrast, higher levels of capital flows lead to more instability and more frequent and severe financial and economic crisis. Ken Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart determined that high levels of international capital flows were strongly correlated with bigger and nastier financial crises. The BIS also made a persuasive, well-documented case that excessive “financial elasticity” which means lots of cross-border funds mobility that can quickly collapse, was the cause of the 2008 crisis.

It’s also hard to see how highly mobile money can be a plus, particularly for smaller and even not so small economies. Look at the how much the yen has moved over the past decade. How can investors in things that would actually make an economy more productive (foreign direct investment, such as factories and other operations) make any kind of accurate assessment of returns to cross border investment with so much foreign exchange volatility? And that uncertainty will lead a foreign investor to require a higher rate of return. Similarly, even if there were measurable benefits from highly mobile money movements, the costs of the busts need to be offset against that. It’s pretty hard to see how you “offset” the cost of the blowup just past, whose total cost is estimated at one times global GDP.

Thus the paper argues that the heretical idea of capital controls can make sense as a way to choke off a credit bubble stoked by foreign investment.

Austerity. The IMF article argues that while small countries may have no choice other than to curtail their overall level of indebtedness, this is not a one-size-fits-all prescription. For larger countries, running larger deficits, particularly after a financial crisis, is a better option than belt-tighening.

This section of the article is frustrating, since it utterly fails to distinguish fiat currency issuers from states that are not monetary sovereigns. It also blandly accepts the idea that high levels of indebtedness are bad, when government debt increases typically make up for shortfalls in private sector investment and demand. Recall that in the supposedly virtuous Clinton budget surplus years, households, which are normally net savers in aggregate, managed to make up for the Federal government fiscal drag by going on a big debt party. But it does have some zingers, at least by the standards of policy wonkery:

Austerity policies not only generate substantial welfare costs due to supply-side channels, they also hurt demand—and thus worsen employment and unemployment. The notion that fiscal consolidations can be expansionary (that is, raise output and employment), in part by raising private sector confidence and investment, has been championed by, among others, Harvard economist Alberto Alesina in the academic world and by former European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet in the policy arena. However, in practice, episodes of fiscal consolidation have been followed, on average, by drops rather than by expansions in output. On average, a consolidation of 1 percent of GDP increases the long-term unemployment rate by 0.6 percentage point and raises by 1.5 percent within five years the Gini measure of income inequality (Ball and others, 2013)

Depicting “fiscal consolidation” as snake oil is radical, at least among Serious Economists.

Increasing inequality. The paper gratifyingly says that both austerity and highly mobile capital increase inequality, and inequality is a negative for growth. And it firmly says Something Must Be Done:

The evidence of the economic damage from inequality suggests that policymakers should be more open to redistribution than they are.Of course, apart from redistribution, policies could be designed to mitigate some of the impacts in advance—for instance, through increased spending on education and training, which expands equality of opportunity (so-called predistribution policies). And fiscal consolidation strategies—when they are needed—could be designed to minimize the adverse impact on low-income groups. But in some cases, the untoward distributional consequences will have to be remedied after they occur by using taxes and government spending to redistribute income. Fortunately, the fear that such policies will themselves necessarily hurt growth is unfounded.

Mind you, this article is far from ideal. For instance, careful readers will see that it treats the debunked loanable funds theory as valid.

In some ways, the fact that this article was written at all, and that it is apparently fomenting debate in policy circles is more important than the details of its argument, since it does not break new ground. Instead, it takes some of the findings and analysis of heterodox and forward-thinking development economists and distills them nicely.

The publication of this IMF paper is a sign that the zeitgeist is, years after the crisis, finally shifting. It is becoming too hard to maintain the pretense that the policies that produced the global financial crisis, which are almost entirely still intact, are working. And the elites and their economic alchemists may also recognize that if they don’t change course pretty soon, they risk the loss of not just legitimacy but control. With Trump and Le Pen at the barricades, the IMF wake-up call may be too late.

ostry
ostry

Print Friendly
Tweet about this on TwitterDigg thisShare on Reddit0Share on StumbleUpon0Share on Facebook0Share on LinkedIn4Share on Google+0Buffer this pageEmail this to someone

45 comments

  1. diptherio

    Call me a cynic, but something tells me this won’t change anything for the people currently suffering under the IMF yoke. IMF has put out plenty of papers that actually take a realistic look at the world, but it hasn’t stopped them from pursuing policies essentially guaranteed to immiserate the majority of the population. Talk is cheap, in other words. The IMF has caused so much suffering and been responsible for propagandizing so much BS over the years that reports like this just don’t move me at all. Oh really, I think, you finally figured out that neo-liberalism isn’t all it’s cracked up to be? Well what a bunch of frickin’ geniuses!

    Too little, too late.

    1. diptherio

      The publication of this IMF paper is a sign that the zeitgeist is, years after the crisis, finally shifting. It is becoming too hard to maintain the pretense that the policies that produced the global financial crisis, which are almost entirely still intact, are working. And the elites and their economic alchemists may also recognize that if they don’t change course pretty soon, they risk the loss of not just legitimacy but control.

      The point of the shifting rhetoric is not to introduce policies that will better serve the poor, or the citizenry generally, it is a defensive action on the part of the elites to maintain their legitimacy and control.

      1. nony mouse

        i concur wholeheartedly with both of your above statements.

        even worse, it just proves that they are able to learn to speak the right language about the economy. while we peons wait on for the inevitable co-optation and corruption of it towards elite ends once again.

        congrats on your podseries, by the way.

      2. drb48

        The point of the shifting rhetoric is not to introduce policies that will better serve the poor, or the citizenry generally, it is a defensive action on the part of the elites to maintain their legitimacy and control.

        Yep.

        1. JerseyJeffersonian

          In related developments ( in the matters of legitimacy, and most especially, control) here are two links:

          https://theintercept.com/2016/05/26/secret-text-in-senate-bill-would-give-fbi-warrantless-access-to-email-records/

          My comment on this in an email to others…

          Amendment IV [1791]

          The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

          Obviously, this paints our (overblown) liberties with an over-wide brush, and the Wise Solons of our Senate know just how to get around this superannuated and flawed conceptual framework. Just ignore this amendment. You’ve got nothing to hide, right, so what are you worried about? Actually, you can hide nothing, and anything you said, wrote, or plausibly thought can and will be held against you at a time convenient for the Security State to whip it out if they have their way. C’mon, it’s an Empire now, and it plays by its own rules, and is not to be chained to some fossilized, starry-eyed claptrap from the Enlightenment. Sheesh.

          https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2016/05/26/special-operations-troops-assaulted-downtown-tampa-all-to-thunderous-applause/

          And my comment in that email on this matter…

          Wait, military special forces from over a dozen countries are running an exercise in the supposedly sovereign territory of the United States? What, is this the transnational elite’s super-special SWAT team taking off the wraps? And Idiot America loves it. The Founding Fathers weep, just as they do concerning that first item.

          Let those malcontents from Green Day whine about the Idiocracy…

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1BS7XnEZqc

          1. Quantum Future

            Jefferson – Nice treason going eh? Boy some overconfident are in for a shock. The French army thought they were the shit until longbowmen showed up. Enough said.

            As to this article. No, there is no free lunch. There could be a free snack if the money was directed at productive endeavors. But they did not and now trust and the social contract is totally broken.

            Even Larry Summers by 2010 was calling for a new one. That all said, the last 40 years elite did get some good advancements in science and medicine done. I’ll give credit where it is due but the empire building shit isn’t a plus, that is for sure.

          2. TheCatSaid

            That Tampa exercise is really something. Maybe it was a practice run to take out Maduro, since they “messed it up” with Chavez. Or a warning to Others who don’t play nice with the USA.

      3. Yves Smith Post author

        The IMF research side and the IMF program side operate separately from each other. However, IMF research does influence other economists and media coverage. You are not going to see changes in policy anywhere until you see changes in orthodox thinking.

        And splits within the elites are a necessary but not sufficient condition for change. We are seeing the start of a real split in the elites.

        1. norb

          Something that always bears repeating is that a split in elite factions is essential to implementing real change. Access to power, money, and influence is what is needed to move society in any direction. Thru my own experience in life, I find most people are not sociopaths, they generally will direct their actions in benevolent manner if the overall social convention is to do so. This is why leadership is so important, and points to the true crisis of our time. We have a crisis of leadership.

          Two points that need to be driven home again and again. Government policy implemented in the service of the people and the notion that the middle class was created thru public policy, not some natural occurrence. It was a choice.

          The split in elite thinking is showing itself because we have reached a crisis point and the elite are finally feeling the heat. While it is easy to paint these class divisions with a broad brush, there is an underlying dynamic of the classes that has been lost in recent years. The sense of duty to ones people and nation. What we have now, at least in America, is a confused mess. You cannot serve the nation by impoverishing its people.

          True wealth, happiness, and stability can only be achieved through bonds of respect forged between the ruling class and citizens. Without this functioning ideal, you will have strife and hardship. The elite must make a choice. Keep doubling down on their oppression of the working class, or decide they have a duty to humanity.

          In the end, responsibility for ones actions in life cannot be avoided forever. As the destruction of inequality grows ever more apparent, the elite must face their conscience or the mob, it would seem to me, any sane person would rather choose the former than the later.

    2. Plenue

      “IMF has put out plenty of papers that actually take a realistic look at the world, but it hasn’t stopped them from pursuing policies essentially guaranteed to immiserate the majority of the population.”

      Not directly related to this subject, but this reminds me of book reviews. I have any number of books that challenge orthodoxy of one kind or other (like, say, David Graeber’s Debt: The First 5,000 Years) that feature quotes from reviews on the covers and first few pages that praise the book as ‘groundbreaking’, ‘important’ etc. But then as far as I can see the publications that issued those reviews absorb none of the new wisdom and continue parroting the status quo. Hell, sometimes these books get awards or selected as best books of the year before whatever information they contain is completely ignored.

      1. TheCatSaid

        Like Lord Ashby’s observations that it typically takes 200 years before new knowledge makes its way into policies and institutions.

        Reduce that time somewhat due to internet, but even so his point is well made. He argues that policies and institutions only incorporate the new knowledge once a significant percentage of the general public has already accepted it. This says to me that new thinking has to happen from the ground up, and we should not expect it to happen from the top down.

  2. fresno dan

    What’s the old saying – “A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”

    And I’d say with something like economics, something much more similar to a religion than a science, its more like “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so”

  3. Synoia

    Such heresy!!!!

    Options:

    1. Ignore it until it goes away.
    2. Publish a counter example.
    3. Claim that disaster will entail, and We Are Doing The Best We Can in an uncertain world, and debt is bad because It Must Be Repaid.
    4. Have an election, and Nothing Can Be Done until after the election (which is never in the US because there is always an election looming)
    5. Sex scandal. (The authorities have an ample supply, due to their pervasive surveillance)
    6. If all else fails, then terrorism, because existential enemies, carefully built on a continuing basis, and must have war, like Syria.
    7. Refer it to a committee for further study.

  4. Minnie Mouse

    “Unrestricted cross-border money flows” absolutely shouts dynamic instability from the get go and how could it be otherwise? Foreign direct investment also smells of absentee cross-border slum lord -ism; out of sight out of mind irresponsibility. Common currency (the Euro) wipes out fault tolerance and resiliency in the system and hard wires contagion. Nobody even discusses trade imbalance instability from so-called “free trade”.

    1. JerseyJeffersonian

      And we, the preterite [Def.: A person not elected to salvation by God.], are the nail for which that hammer was intended.

      1. Synoia

        preterite: A person not elected to salvation by God? Not what my search says:

        noun
        1. a tense of verbs used to relate past action, formed in English by inflection of the verb, as jumped, swam
        2.a verb in this tense
        adjective
        3. denoting this tense
        Word Origin
        C14: from Late Latin praeteritum (tempus) past (time, tense), from Latin praeterīre to go by, from preter- + īre to go

        1. Tom Allen

          Add Pynchon to your search, or Calvinism. One blog post says:

          Expat asks, what is Pynchon talking about when he refers to the “preterite?” Let me take a hasty stab at an answer.

          As I recall, the Calvinists thought that there were three kinds of people: the elect, the preterite, and the damned. The elect are going to heaven. The damned very clearly are not. The preterite can’t be sure, so they do their very best to act like elect, since if they act like the damned they won’t be happy in the end.

        2. JerseyJeffersonian

          Oxford English Dictionary, Noun, Definition #3

          3. Theol. A person not elected to salvation by God. Cf. preterition n. 3. rare.
          1864 Fraser’s Mag. May 533/2 The reprobates who are damned because they were always meant to be damned, and the preterites who are damned because they were never meant to be saved.
          2006 http://www.adequacy.org 5 Dec. (O.E.D. Archive) Weren’t the Elect who interbred with Preterites committing bestiality? Are they not therefore condemned to Hell?

          Admittedly rare, but as with Tom Allen nested in the comments, I came upon this meaning through reading Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow, and taking in his ruminations upon the Calvinist classes of humans, the elect, the damned, and the preterite. Fit in very nicely with the story line. Fits in all too well with the way of the world, in my opinion.

          1. Synoia

            I’d conclude the Calvinists misused a word. The Latin root seems to Indictate this.

            If we are not chosen, then I’d also assery we are the dammed.

            The Calvinists indeed there is some hope for salvation for their definition of preterite.

            However, the Calvinists have a harsh, unforgiving creed, and consequently do not appear to me to meet our Lord’s definitions, especially the “let him who is without sin cast the first stone” and certainly miss “judge not.”

          2. Synoia

            I’d conclude the Calvinists misused a word. The Latin root seems to Indictate this.

            If we are not chosen, then I’d also assert we are the dammed.

            The Calvinists indeed there is some hope for salvation for their definition of preterite.

            However, the Calvinists have a harsh, unforgiving creed, and consequently do not appear to me to meet our Lord’s definitions, especially the “let him who is without sin cast the first stone” and certainly miss “judge not.”

  5. ke

    Neoliberal policy is to replace men, with whatever combined circuit is most efficient. It’s not rocket science. Last time we approached -Johnson & Johnson, your bait and swap inversion specializing in the baby slave trade, Yves was talking about credit unions and I was talking about Proctor & Gamble.

    I have no use for peer friends, and recognize no enemy among a herd. Labor is a tribe, with as many different spirits / passion as possible, NOT a pyramid of rotated peer pressure groups, under the all seeing eye of debt as money.

    Theories are like people, NOT R&D is r&d. I have been teaching young women AI programming right in front of your eyes, essentially what I would teach my daughters, funny, just as if they were at my armchair, before dinner, after she played with mommy all day. Serious time.

    Just because you are surrounded physically, doesn’t mean that you are the prisoner.

    1. TheCatSaid

      baby slave trade? I don’t follow.

      Help me connect the dots: theories, R&D, young women learning AI, your daughters. . .

      1. ke

        You are moving awfully fast. I think if you print out several pieces, and recombine the sentences, you will find/ the answer.
        Essentially, farming people is a tuning problem, through DNA filters. The bananas up a ladder experiment (look it up).

        Feminism and chauvinism have their trade offs, more now and less later. Well it’s later, and young women like my daughters, thrown in that black hole, are NOTS, who will be far better programmers than anything currently on the planet. But. Proof is in the pudding.

        1. TheCatSaid

          Thanks, I think I can put a few pieces together.
          I’m working on my NOT status. My progress feels slow, not fast.

  6. rjs

    i just realized that i dont know what neo-liberalism is, other than a pejorative i’ve heard used dozens of times…i couldnt even tell you who is one, and who isnt..

    1. uasi

      Yves may wish to weigh in with a more detailed explanation (here is a recent treatment of the “neoliberal thought collective”) but “Neoliberalism Expressed as Simple Rules” for rules of thumb that will enable you to detect neoliberals in your ordinary dealings in comment sections and on the twitter. If your interlocutor, for example, has a dogmatic faith in the workings of markets, you’re dealing with a neoliberal.

      I would say neoliberalism has been the dominant ideology, across the board, since the mid-70s (in other words, pre-Reagan). I’d have a hard time finding any policy that fits within the Overton Window of permitted discourse of DC, from left to right, that is not neoliberal, scholastics-level fine-grained faction-driven distinctions aside. The current stasis of the Overton Window is being challenged a bit by the Sanders campaign (from the left) and the Trump campaign (from the right), granting for a moment that politics are bipolar. Too long an answer, I know!

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        Please see Recent Items. We have a post on the Mirowski’s paper on the Neoliberal Though Collective prominently displayed.

      2. Quantum Future

        I understand your nuanced depth UASI but I think that commentator was asking in laymens term. Liberalism is spending other peoples money. It can be used by government for good or evil. Neo liberalism implies such term on steroids. An always fair question as a taxpayer is this.:

        Does what I am being taxed for increase my security, freedom and potential upward mobility?

        The last 40 years tells me no. Mixed bag sometimes, not all evil but certainly the wrong direction and alarming. Not only does the looting damage opportunity but those that got the money by stealing have the worst attitudes in the world. Anybody with one penny or position over you has a shitty attitude. By the way, I am my own boss so my observations are neutral.

        Having a business model and political system that hoovers it all into the top guarantees a global slum. The ‘isms’ (capitalism vs socialism, fascism, communsm) and democrate vs. republican wind up being a flimsy excuse but serious distraction from looting.

        This current cycle of it is double standards and law, looting. Call it whatever you want. Robbery is part of many species, but so is wising up to it and defending oneself.

        The IMF knows this cycle of looting is near over so there is not cost abandoning an ‘ism’. But they do want you to think free lunch can always be had. The snack can be, leave math asidethe reason why is some perception can become a reality. Debt issued for productive purpose can have a multiplyer effect. But when issued to hand out in to crony buddies or consumption of some things, the economy grinds down to near halt.

        Had to explain the term while simply explaining the context. The why is as important as a term or nothing can be learned or improved.

        1. jerry hamrick

          But, because we have an unlimited supply of money then government would be spending money that belongs to no individual. There can be no deficit spending, only spending. The new economics system would be one that distributes rather than redistributes, Society would decide the rules for such distribution and individuals can still be denied their “fair share.” Rules of exchange and possession of money would guide our interactions But the most important aspect of an unlimited supply of money is that as individuals small children would learn that they will have enough money to go as far as their talents and efforts can take them; they will learn that they will have equal access to resources, opportunities, rights, and protections that will enable them to build long lives worth living.

          So we really don’t have to worry about the supply of money, we just have to worry about a society that really does give young humans equal access to resources, opportunities, rights, and protections. The only government that has come close to reaching that goal was the democracy of ancient Athens.

          Athens did not have an unlimited supply of money, but they spent their money for the common good which included giving some money to people who needed it as well as spending great sums for the common good rather than giving equal shares of those sums to its citizens.

          Under our current systems of government and economics an unlimited supply of money would make the rich richer and the poor poorer.

          Under a democracy that has an unlimited amount of money the GDP would become the ADI, average domestic income, and our success would be measured by the level and the growth of the ADI.

  7. Minnie Mouse

    How about this; hyper aggressive top down global economic integration no matter what the fallout.

  8. Benedict@Large

    Finding the balance?

    I have no idea why this paper is even here on NC. Because decades later the IMF is saying, well, maybe we were a little wrong? They had to butcher people to put this crap in power and butcher people to keep this crap in power. That’s not a little wrong. The economy exists for the people; not the other way around.

    1. JCC

      For rjs: For a good start on what neoliberalism means, a base definition to start with is the exact opposite of Benedict@Large’s statement above, “The economy exists for the people”.

      Most sane people feel that economic “science” is inherently a social, soft, science and that economics as a field of study and policy determination exists to serve the people The neoliberal contingent feels the economy is “the invisible hand”, equivalent to God. We exist to serve the economy.

  9. Robert NYC

    Didn’t anyone read John Gray? He laid bare all the neo-liberal fallacies in his 1998 book: “False Dawn, The Delusions of Global Capitalism”. So now the IMF comes along 18 years later and states what was explained nearly two decades ago. Gray is an intellectual giant in a land of fools so nobody paid any attention to him.

    1. norb

      Keep the masses ignorant, wanting and distracted. Under the current social system, you are offered a choice: Be “SMART” and join in on the looting, or be exploited as one to the sheep. It seems humanity must evolve to a third position- one of collective benefit and sustainability or end in extinction.

      1. different clue

        Neither a swindler nor a sucker be.

        Neither a looter nor a victim be.

        etc.

  10. Sound of the Suburbs

    About time, the IMF and World Bank have been using these ideas for decades even before they were adopted globally under the “Neo-Liberal” ideology.

    They have a track record of nearly 50 years of unmitigated disaster.

    When South American and African nations were in trouble the World Bank stepped in and offered loans as long as they reformed their economies with less public spending, austerity and privatising previously public companies.

    It was a disaster.

    In the Asian Crisis in 1998 the IMF stepped in and offered loans as long as they reformed their economies with less public spending, austerity and privatising previously public companies.

    It was a disaster.

    When Greece got into trouble recently the IMF stepped in and offered loans as long as they reformed their economy with less public spending, austerity and privatising previously public companies.

    It was a disaster.

  11. Sound of the Suburbs

    The US and the UK were the first to adopt these ideas with Reagan and Thatcher.

    One idea was to make countries competitive in a global economy.

    Let’s have a look at the US.

    The minimum wage must cover the cost of living in that nation, what must the minimum wage cover in the US?

    1) The cost of sky high mortgage payments or rent
    2) The repayments on student loans
    3) The cost of all services that were once free or subsidised
    4) The cost of healthcare

    The minimum wage necessary to cover the cost of living in the US ensures it can never compete with China.

    Central Banks were supposed to keep inflation low to ensure the cost of living does not rise too quickly ensuring wage inflation can be kept low.

    The Central Banks produced low inflation figures in the US, while massive inflation was occurring in the costs of housing, education and healthcare causing the cost of living to sky rocket.

    This fictitious inflation figure targeting seems to be a rather pointless exercise.

    There is no point in producing low inflation figures while the cost of living is sky rocketing.

    A global youth now sit at home with their parents unable to afford to move out due to high mortgage payments and rent.

    They are not starting families and the demographic problems are going to get a whole lot worse.

    Why is global aggregate demand so low?
    Suppressed wages with sky rocketing costs of living.

    Neo-Liberalism really is just silly.

    1. Sound of the Suburbs

      A look at the UK.

      We have followed the US idea of paid further education.

      One of the first things the US banks did in 2008 was to get the Government to back student loans as they were beginning to default on a large scale.

      In the UK we have linked repayments to RPI and not the CPI figure the Central Bank targets.

      The usual silliness for masking the rising costs of living and an opportunity to rip off young people.

      Another idea, unregulated, trickle down capitalism, which we had in the UK in the 19th Century.

      In the 19th Century those at the top were very wealthy those at the bottom lived in abject poverty, no trickledown.

      The first regulations to deal with wealthy UK businessman seeking profit, the abolition of slavery and child labour.

      Where regulation is lax today?
      Factories in China with suicide nets.

      No wonder the French are rioting and the populists are getting angry.

      Neo-Liberalism really is rather nasty.

      1. Sound of the Suburbs

        Michael Hudson in “Killing the Host” goes into the rather more sensible thinking of Classical Economists on how to make nations competitive.

        You lower the cost of living to the minimum, to ensure the basic minimum wage is low enough to compete with other countries.

        Pretty much the opposite of the US today:

        1) Low housing costs
        2) Free or subsidised education
        3) Free or subsidised services
        4) Free or subsidised healthcare

        You need to get the cost of living down, so the minimum wage necessary is the same as that in China.

    2. different clue

      If we abolish Free Trade and restore Protectionism, the American minimum wage won’t HAVE to compete with China.

      Free Trade is the new Slavery. Protectionism is the new Abolition.

  12. Guglielmo Tell

    The IMF is trying to wash its own face now. Too late. Both the IMF and the WB must stand Trial for Crimes Against Humanity.

  13. flow5

    There was only one explanation for the GR – Bankrupt U Bernanke was the sole cause.

    Rates-of-change in money flows, M*Vt = roc’s in PT (Professor Irving Fisher’s “equation of exchange”.

    POSTED: Dec 13 2007 06:55 PM |

    The Commerce Department said retail sales in Oct 2007 increased by 1.2% over Oct 2006, & up a huge 6.3% from Nov 2006.

    10/1/2007,,,,,,,-0.47,,,,,,, -0.22 * temporary bottom
    11/1/2007,,,,,,, 0.14,,,,,,, -0.18
    12/1/2007,,,,,,, 0.44,,,,,,,-0.23
    1/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.59,,,,,,, 0.06
    2/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.45,,,,,,, 0.10
    3/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.06,,,,,,, 0.04
    4/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.04,,,,,,, 0.02
    5/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.09,,,,,,, 0.04
    6/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.20,,,,,,, 0.05
    7/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.32,,,,,,, 0.10
    8/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.15,,,,,,, 0.05
    9/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.00,,,,,,, 0.13
    10/1/2008,,,,,,, -0.20,,,,,,, 0.10 * possible recession
    11/1/2008,,,,,,, -0.10,,,,,,, 0.00 * possible recession
    12/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.10,,,,,,, -0.06 * possible recession

    Trajectory as I predicted:

  14. Russell

    What leaders might there be to make the people see?
    MMT, has to be spent for the correct goal as if connected to insurable things.
    Defense & Education.
    How to see these as things?
    But they are.

Comments are closed.