Marshall Auerback appeared earlier today on Fox Business to answer the question: “Is the US really broke?” The video can be viewed here.
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Marshall, I watched the video and am happpy that you did not let the interviewer's predisposed views slip through without challenge–and he tried, didn't he? However, I am not sure how much will sink in with the interviewer or his audience. The lead-in spoke about how many of the network's commentators were warning of the debt disaster but now, at least in my perception, the announcer implied that you were a lone voice in dissent. (As the interviewee, you probably did not see that while you were speaking Fox splashed right across your figure the size of deficit and debt…sure to distract attention from any less-than-mentally-concentrated-viewers–might that include most of the Fox audience?) I think we all need to make greater emphasis early in our speaking about MMT issues, because the interviewers are directed to interrupt speakers and try to throw them off balance, that our views are not opinions but reflect the realities of the accounting identities. Here I made the mistake myself, putting the important point at the end of the complex sentanc. I know you made this point, I heard you say it, but it was toward the end of a response and did not, at least to me, seem to carry as much weight as it should. Maybe we can make the point that as everyone catches on to the way "it really works" there are going to be a lot of economists, commentators, and politicians that will look extremely silly–and do you dear interviewer want to be one of those that "get it" early or look silly? An excellent job, Marshall, thank you.
The US may not be broke but the video sure seems to be.
Wow, that was great – I think that is the first time I have ever seen MMT views expressed on such a widely viewed platform. Would love to see much more of the same.
It's good to see you on Fox, though quite ironic given that their other commentators are amongst the biggest of all deficit terrorists. I agree with a few of William's comments, and I think it's a real shame that they only gave you a few minutes.I think it was quite good that you got in a few key points, such as the government being an issuer rather than a user, and the USA being incomparable to Europe. However, next time I think it would be best to mention something like this, "government borrowing is a monetary operation, and taxes function to regulate demand within the economy, not to fund spending. In other words, the government doesn't need to tax or borrow in order to spend. Make no mistake about it, the USA never runs out of USD's".The national debt "problem" is hard to debate on TV. This is partly because there are some out there that don't beleive the public debt is a problem, but for the wrong reasons (like USA is the reserve currency, it has been higher before,the USA will grow out of it etc). This is essentially how the interviewer interpreted your argument, and I think you did a great job in trying to correct him.Though, with only 3 mins…. what can you do really. Ideally Scott, Randy and you would get a full hour slot on prime time cable!Thanks
The national debt problem is hard to debate but I may have stumbled upon something last week.I was talking to a guy at work that was talking about the national debt and I asked him which he was more concerned about the private debt or the publlc debt? He said the public debt, so I asked him if he would feel worse off holding a 100,000$ Treasury Bond (100,000 in public debt) or owing a credit card company 100,000$ (100,000 in private debt)? He kind of cocked his head, stammered and then he just shrugged. He clearly had never looked at it that way and was befuddled. I'l see this week if he brings it up again.