Category Archives: L. Randall Wray

Teoría Monetaria Moderna

For our Spanish speaking friends, below are materials for the Madrid launch (March 3-8) of L. Randall Wray’s Modern Money Primer in Spanish – Teoría Monetaria Moderna.

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The Spanish Launch of Modern Money Theory

By L. Randall Wray

Sorry, I’ve been very busy in recent weeks, finishing up a book on Minsky and revising my Modern Money Primer for a second edition (more on both of those projects later).

Meanwhile, Lola Books is gearing up to release the Primer in Spanish next week. I’ll be in Madrid for the launch and for a series of meetings. I’ll give two presentations that are open to the public. Details are below. Hope to see our Spanish friends there!

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The Modern Money Primer: Spanish Language Edition

By L. Randall Wray

For our Spanish speaking followers, my Modern Money Primer has just been released in Spanish and is available.

mmpesp

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Jobs for Greeks and for Americans, Too

By L. Randall Wray

Here’s a nice piece:

The Workers’ Think Tank: With an eye on the United States and Greece, scholars at the Levy Economics Institute are developing plans to ensure full employment, by Sasha Abramsky, February 2, 2015, The Nation.

As Sasha notes, the Levy Institute has a novel approach to fighting unemployment: JOBS! Hardly anyone ever thinks about that–that the cause of unemployment is lack of jobs.

For some reason, virtually all policy-makers and economists (including progressives) think that jobs will magically appear. True, some suggest that US unemployment is created because China (et.al.) “steals” jobs that are rightfully due to America. Hence, the solution is to steal them back.

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Jobs for Greeks

By L. Randall Wray

With Syriza in the driver’s seat, Greece now has some hope for the end to austerity imposed by Germany and the Troika.

Here’s a good short piece by C. J. Polychroniou, a research associate and policy fellow at the Levy Economics Institute. As he explains, what Syriza wants is no more—and no less—radical than what the USA did in the 1930s to deal with its Great Depression: “the bulk of Syriza’s economic program for addressing the catastrophic crisis in Greece, which has evolved into a humanitarian crisis, is inspired by President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal programs”.

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Ferguson, MO

By L. Randall Wray

This article rings true.

Since the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson by a cop, we’ve seen video after video of cops killing unarmed young men and even boys. The excessive militarization of our domestic police has come into question. The institutionalized racism among our police forces is only part of the problem.

It certainly looks like our police are literally scared to death of the population they are sworn to protect. The operative notion seems to be that our police should not take any risks—they should assume all boys and men—at least if they are black–are armed and dangerous, hence police should shoot first and sort things out later. In any event, prosecutors do not indict police who are doing their job, and juries rarely convict them for bad judgment. Better to err on the side of their own safety. It is indeed hard to second-guess them. I say this sincerely even if I find this unacceptable.

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Odds and Sods: Some Good Reads For a Cold Winter Friday

By L. Randall Wray

If you, too, are living in one of the sub-zero climes right now, you want some stimulating reading for Friday.

  1. Here’s one of the best and fairest summaries of MMT that I’ve seen:

As Joe says: “Few matters of economic importance are as woefully misunderstood as modern money. It can seem a fiendishly complicated subject, even to economists. Schumpeter confessed to never having understood money to his own satisfaction, while Keynes claimed to know of only three people who really grasped it: ‘A Professor at another university; one of my students; and a rather junior clerk at the Bank of England’.”

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Is It Time for MMT To Become Mainstream to Save Us from the Second Global Financial Crisis of the Millennium?

By L. Randall Wray

Some of you will remember that MMT got its first huge mainstream exposure through a Washington Post article written by Dylan Matthews.  He’s just written another excellent story, this time about Stephanie Kelton going to Washington. Finally, there might be an alternative to the deficit hawk and timid deficit dove lovefest!

As Dylan says: “For years, the main disagreement between Democratic and Republican budget negotiators was about how to balance the budget — what to cut, what to tax, how fast to implement it — but not whether to balance it. Even most liberal economists agree that, in the medium-run, it’s better to have less government debt rather than more. Kelton denies that premise. She thinks that, in many cases, government surpluses are actively destructive and balancing the budget is very dangerous. For example, Kelton thinks the Clinton surpluses are nothing to brag about and they actually inflicted economic damage lasting over a decade.”

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In Appreciation of Lord Robert Skidelsky–Presentation for Economists for Peace and Security

By L. Randall Wray
Cross posted from Economonitor
Updated 01-10-2015: Added video links

I just returned from the annual ASSA meetings in Boston. This is largely a front for the American Economics Association to produce an appearance of pluralism. The ASSA is actually run by the AEA, which allocates to itself the prime locations and biggest conference rooms—and then offers a few slots and tiny rooms for most of the heterodox groups that also hold their annual meetings with the ASSA.

This is the closest economists come to a pornfest. As you walk by the typical AEA panel presentation, you’ll see a tiny audience in a darkened room, titillated by a powerpoint slide filled with obscene mathematics.

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BOOM BUST BOOM: MINSKY AT THE MOVIES

By L. Randall Wray

I highly recommend a movie to be released next year (that is, the year that begins next week). Terry Jones, of Monty Python fame, is one of the key developers of the film. It is on the Global Financial Crisis, but also provides a quick history of bubbles and crashes. It is highly entertaining and as good as any that I’ve seen on the crisis.

The movie features Hyman P. Minsky as well as J.K. Galbraith, who appear as life-sized puppets. One of Terry’s crew told me they brought Minsky over from England on a plane as a fare-paying customer. I would have loved to have seen the look on the faces of the flight attendants. I hope they bought him a beer.

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