Saturday, February 14, 2015
  Austerity =

I see the Modern Monetary Theory scammers are coming to life again with their idiotic Magic Platinum Coin trick.

"Just as sumer is icumen in, so too are budget fights. And that means another opportunity to talk up the platinum coin as a way around budgetary tactics designed to inflict austerity on ordinary Americans."

A big part of the problem, as I mentioned before, is the word austerity. I don't think it was intended to be deceptive. It was applied to EU actions for convenience, and doesn't have the same flavor in Euro and English. It's a False Friend like actual and control and realize, which are nearly universal but have entirely different meanings in different languages.

The MMT scammers are using this confusion to distract us from the proper answer.

What Germany is inflicting on Greece is NOT austerity=frugality. It is simply a Leveraged Buyout. Nothing new. Germany pulled austerity=LBOs in that part of the world in the 1930s as a cheap way of enslaving those weak but resource-rich Balkan countries. Use various tactics to get the country indebted to Germany, then take control to satisfy the debt, then cut costs to eliminate pesky humans, then own the real estate. Austerity=LBO.

Ordinary Americans have NOT been suffering from government-imposed austerity=frugality because there ISN'T ANY SUCH FUCKING THING. We have been massively suffering from austerity=LBO, but not at the government level. Jobs have disappeared because Share Value Is Supreme. Companies that formerly invested in factories and gave good jobs to low-skill males have been LBOed, and the jobs have been eliminated or handed to foreigners.

Ordinary Americans recognize the importance of austerity=frugality. Despite lack of jobs, we've been pulling ourselves out of personal debt since 2008. The quiet but informative econ blogger MyBudget360 shows a surprising comparison of US vs Canada. We think of those Scottish Canadians as champions of austerity=frugality, but in fact they've been rolling up more debt since 2008 while US consumers have been painfully cleaning up our act.

The correct solution must be imposed by government, but not by any sort of budgetary device. The correct answer to Krugman On Crack should be Glass-Steagall On Crack. Literally and concretely. Treat speculators and LBOers the same way Crips treat Bloods. Or in metallic terms, we need lead instead of platinum.

= = = = =

Sidenote: On 'Scottish Canadians' I wanted to href the old joke about all Canadian men being named either Duncan or Stewart. Google couldn't locate the joke because it was clogged up with THOUSANDS of LinkedIn and Facebook pages from Canadians named Duncan Stewart or Stewart Duncan. Digital version of the same joke, I guess.

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Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.

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