Zipriztin ekonomikoak (22)

(i) Pavlina Techerneva: eskuragarritasuna

Reframing the Affordability Debate1

Professor Pavlina Tcherneva discussing what “affordability” means in the context of Modern Monetary Theory. When you realize that the government can buy anything that’s for sale, the question becomes what are our priorities.”

(ii) Warren Mosler: inportazioak eta esportazioak

Real Terms Of Trade: Imports Are Good And Exports Are Bad2

Warren Mosler and Professor Stephanie Kelton discussing the real terms of trade. When we import something from a foreign country, we get the thing and they get dollars. When we export something to a foreign country, they get the thing and we get their currency. Which one is better for us? Imports are goods and services that we can consume but didn’t have to work to produce, while exports are goods and services that we had to work to produce but don’t get to consume. So from the point of view of our society as a whole, exports are a cost, while imports are a benefit.

If we are net exporting (meaning we’re exporting more than we import) then the amount we produce but don’t consume is greater than the amount we consume but don’t produce. This is called a trade surplus, and from a “real” point of view, it is a burden. If we are net importing (meaning we’re importing more than we export) then the amount we produce but don’t consume is less than the amount we consume but don’t produce. This is a trade deficit, and from a “real” point of view, it is a benefit.

People sometimes say we should run a trade surplus so that our exporters can sell more abroad, and therefore create more jobs, known as “market advantage,” and that this is good for the workers and the economy. Well, if the choice for the workers is exporting or unemployment, then maybe it is, but there’s no reason we have to be forced into only those two options. To eliminate unemployment, the government could implement a Job Guarantee program, and put the unemployed to work doing useful tasks in their communities. (Learn more about that here:…)

Also, under a gold standard there was a fear of running trade deficits, because countries would transfer gold to pay for trades. So running a trade deficit meant you were slowly (or rapidly) losing gold reserves to other nations. But since we abandoned the gold standard in 1971, this isn’t a concern anymore. If we run a trade deficit, other countries accumulate dollars, in the form of reserve accounts at the Federal Reserve. We get goods and services, they get numbers on a spreadsheet.

So in that case, a trade surplus is clearly a net negative for society, and only a benefit to the profits of our exporting firms”

(iii) Randall Wray: Estatua

The Barter System Is A Myth: The State Is Always Involved In Money3

Professor L. Randall Wray on the Thom Hartmann show discussing the origin of money. Even though economics textbooks like to give the narrative of barter evolving into a monetary market, there is actually ZERO historical evidence that this has ever happened, ANYWHERE, EVER. Rather, the historical record supports the MMT claim that money systems evolved as a method for rulers to claim resources from private citizens without just taking it.”

(iv) R. Wray: zergak eta gizarte segurantza

Taxes Do Not Fund Social Security, Investment Does4

Professor L. Randall Wray discussing the distribution of resources involved with Social Security. Although individuals can save some of their income in order to have money later, the economy as a whole cannot do this. Because the total income over the whole economy is equal to the total spending, if we try to “save” by spending less, this only reduces income, and doesn’t actually result in savings. Money is not a finite, scarce resource in the same way that clothes and houses are. Any amount of money necessary can be created and given to people if that’s necessary to fulfill a financial promise. What’s less clear is how those dollars will exchange for real goods and services. If we have promised many dollars to an aging population, but have not also invested in the factories, training, and increases to productive capacity that’s necessary to make the stuff that those people are going to buy, then there will be shortages, which will only lead to rising prices (inflation).

So, the way to prepare for an aging generation is NOT to raise taxes now. It is actually to spend MORE to build up our productive capacity so that we can supply the goods and services necessary to meet the needs of the elderly.

Another way to think about it is like this: if we have an aging population, then we have more people who are consuming without producing. This means that the remaining workers will have to produce MORE in order to produce both for themselves and for the additional retirees. So the necessary step to prepare for that is to bolster up those workers, make sure they have the skills and technology to be as productive as they can in order to meet the increased demand. There is no financial constraint, the federal government can always make any and all payments on-time, since the US government is the issuer of the US dollar, and it can’t run out.”

(v) Deficit Owls

What Is A Deficit Owl?

Professor Stephanie Kelton (former Chair of Economics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and economic advisor to Bernie Sanders) explains the term “Deficit Owls,” which she coined. Deficit Owls, mostly proponents of Modern Money Theory, recognize that in our current floating exchange-rate system, government deficit spending is the only way for the non-government sector to gain net financial assets. As such, any sovereign currency-issuing government should be deficit spending most of the time.”

(a) Bideoa:

(b) Bideo laburrak: Randall Wray, Warren Mosler, Pavlina Tcherneva, Stephanie Kelton, Bill Mitchell, …

RUI (beharrezko bidea) eta gezurrezko leloak

(i) RUI: beharrezko bidea

Referèndum sobre la independència: La via necessària1

Xerrada: “Referèndum sobre la independència: La via necessària” amb Benet Salellas, Jordi Muñoz i Elisenda Paluzie.

(ii) ‘Derecho a decidir’: gezurrezko leloa

Euskal Herrian azken egun hauetan, behin eta berriz entzuten den leloa, alegia,

Gehiengo zabalak posible dira. 75tik 57 legebiltzarkide erabakitzeko eskubidearen alde daude. Herri honek akordio zabalak behar ditu, eta posible dira, borondate politikoa behar da. EAJ eta Podemoseko asko akordio horien alde daude2“,

gezur hutsa da, zeren

(a) PNV-k bere ‘derecho a decidir‘ aspalditik esplikatu baitu, argi eta garbi: Derecho a decidir’ eta ‘Gure esku dago’


(b) Aspalditik ere, salatu dugun bluff eta espainolista hutsa den Podemos argi mintzatu baita Katalunian RUI-ren aurka, behin eta berriz gainera.

Hori gutxi balitz, Baskongadetako Podemos-ek “vende humo” eta “No es cosa de Pili3” (sic).

Hortaz, zer dela eta behin eta berriz entzuten da goian aipatutako lelo aspergarria?

Berriz, aipatutako lelo hori gezur hutsa da!

Zergatik ez dugu erabiltzen internazionala den eta nazioartean onartuta dagoen ‘autodeterminazio eskubidea‘?

Ez al dauka Euskal Herriak, Kataluniak bezalaxe, autodeterminazio eskubiderik?

Beldur ote diogu Euskal Herrian kontzeptuari? Hitzari berari?

Ezezkoan, zergatik gezurretan aritu?

Gogoratu, arren!, ondokoa: Brexit eta autodeterminazioa

AUTODETERMINAZIO eskubidea da giltza bakarra: lehen, orain eta gero

(Ikus Autodeterminazio eskubidea eta Konfederazioa)

Warren Mosler Italiara, berriz

Albistea: 2,3% è sempre austerità. La proposta economica MMT per l’Italia1

Padoan sta negoziando con i commissari di Bruxelles un po’ di flessibilità, in modo da ottenere un rapporto deficit/PIL per il 2017 del 2,3%.

Il 2,3% è ciò che serve all’Italia per rilanciare economia e occupazione?

Proprio no. Il 2,3% è sempre austerità: ancora tagli alla spesa pubblica e assenza di investimenti. In più, come se non bastasse, il Governo si è impegnato, in cambio di una flessibilità inesistente, a realizzare quelle riforme che contribuiscono alla distruzione dei principi costituzionali.

Per rilanciare crescita e occupazione serve di più, serve la proposta economica MMT per l’Italia.”

Mosler-en Proposta economica MMT per l’Italia2


In Mosler: news (berriak),

Mosler-ek: “Will be in Italy for 3 days in October, then UK for a day for several meetings.


PIIGS, in Zipriztin ekonomikoak (19)

PIIGS – Debunking EU Austerity3

1 Ikus,

Zipriztin ekonomikoak (21)


Stephanie Kelton@StephanieKelton1

Jesus knew. #chartalism

Tell us, then, what is your opinion? Is it right to

pay the imperiak tax to Caesar or not?” Jesus

replied, “… Show me the coin used for paying

the tax.” They brought him a denarious, and

Jesus asked them, “Whose image is this? And

whose inscription?”… “Caesa’rs, “ they replied.

Then Jesus said to them,”so give back to

Caesar what is Caesar’s

Mattew 22: 17.21

2016 ira. 25


Geoff Coventry@gladkiwi

@StephanieKelton And Jesus taught unconditional work for all at a living wage #JobGuarantee Matthew 20















@gladkiwi That’s a bit of a stretch, though. 🙂 @StephanieKelton

Geoff Coventry@gladkiwi

@GrkStav Aw, c’mon 😉 @StephanieKelton


@gladkiwi Ok, ok. 🙂 @StephanieKelton

Stephanie Kelton@StephanieKelton

@GrkStav @gladkiwi I’m going with it. Founding father of ELR


@StephanieKelton I have immense symbolic power, clearly. #not_so_much 😀 @gladkiwi

Land & Liberty@Land_Liberty

@StephanieKelton @wbmosler I thought you guys were ‘neo’chartalists who were ok with private banks creating the money 😛 (*hides*)

Warren B. Mosler@wbmosler

@Land_Liberty @StephanieKelton Please define ‘private banks’ and ‘money’ thanks! 😉

Jo Lindsay Walton@jolwalton

@StephanieKelton lol


@StephanieKelton Historically Jesus was just telling his followers not to violently rebel against Rome. But this is a creative take on it.

Rephael Inbar@RephInbar

@StephanieKelton are you sure it was Jesus that said that and not a relative of @wbmosler from those days?

Agustin Mackinlay@agumack

@StephanieKelton an enigmatic answer to a rhetorical question/trap…yet it deeply influenced the West’s political culture, don’t you think?

Tim Owen@oddlotsu

@StephanieKelton Awesome.

James Sitkoski@GizmoLatch

@StephanieKelton Not if your an Old-Testament Christian

steve forst@forst_steve

@StephanieKelton If only Bernie had the courage to speak honestly about Fed Debt, you wouldn’t have to stoop to this level of rhetoric.

RUI (ideia argiak) (13)

AUTODETERMINAZIO eskubidea da giltza bakarra: lehen, orain eta gero…

Hasteko, ikus Autodeterminazio eskubidea eta Konfederazioa


(i) RUI: txostena

El Govern encarga un informe para preparar el referéndum unilateral1

(ii) NAZIO-Estatua

Catalonia sees itself as the nation-state of the future2


Govern. Generalitat @govern

#President @KRLS: “L’única unilateralitat sempre ve de l’Estat espanyol, que nega de manera unilateral que fem referèndum#BNFPuigdemontTV3

2016 ira. 22

(iv) Norvegia eta Suitza (1905)


23 September 1905. Norway and Sweden signed the Karlstad Treaty, which peacefully dissolved the union between the two countries.

2016 ira. 23

(v) ANC

ANCDones Tram39@ANCDones4

Avui a les 12h El Referèndum sobre la independència a #Mercè16 Debat @BCNxlaIND amb @anna_arque, Natàia Esteve @assemblea i @DavictusCat

2016 ira. 24


El Referèndum és l’eina més eficaç i més important per traslladar el resultat Internacionalment, afirma @anna_arque

2016 ira. 24


Elisenda Paluzie@epaluzie6

Sembla que el Referèndum d’autodeterminació tira endavant. Molt bé @KRLS @junqueras i @yeyaboya

Informes per vèncer els recels al referèndum vinculant: així es va gestar la via Puigdemont7

2016 ira. 24

(vii) CUP nazionala

La CUP ratifica el referèndum d’autodeterminació i el procés constituent com estratègia parlamentària8

(viii) Nazio Batuen Erakundea

Quim Arrufat@quimarrufat9

Quim Arrufat(e)k Bertxiotua Silvio Falcón

Gràcies, campió, per dur el nostre missatge més urgent, clar i rotund a la més alta instància internacional, on no hi tindríem veu altrament

2016 ira. 24

Quim Arrufat(e)k gehitu du,

Margallo en los pasillos de Naciones Unidas: “Tenemos un movimiento secesionista en Cataluña que avanza a toda máquina“.

2016 ira. 22

(ix) Millán-Astray

Quim Arrufat@quimarrufat10

Peace and love pels descosits #MaiMésEnllocContraNingú #NuncaMásEnNingúnLugarContraNadie

2016 ira. 24

Hauteskunde eguna Baskongadetan: hausnarketarako

(1) Inpunitatea

Quan la impunitat s’imposa1

(2) Podemos?


Gon(e)k Bertxiotua La Vanguardia

La izquierda no entiende nada. @MacJuanma @SalidaDelEuro

Gon(e)k gehitu du,

La Vanguardia @LaVanguardia

Carmena destinará un 10,7% a inversiones y un 26,43% a reducir la deuda 

2016 ira. 23

John M. Coyote@MacJuanma

@sebas221071 Eso pasa por convertir desde los 80 la economía en un conjunto de dogmas místico-religiosos. Es cuestión de FE. @SalidaDelEuro

Stefano Redi@RediStefano

@MacJuanma y demuestra su total ignorancia sobre las reglas macroeconomicas mas sencillas @sebas221071 @SalidaDelEuro

Stefano Redi@RediStefano

@sebas221071 cuando la izquierda hace políticas de derechas uno acaba votando por el original… @MacJuanma @SalidaDelEuro


@sebas221071 @MacJuanma @LaVanguardia Nunca me gustó esta gente. Siempre sospeché que eran austericos con collares distintos

(3) Ezkerra?

“… the Left has abandoned progressive policy positions and, increasingly, moved towards a neo-liberal stance in macroeconomic policy, which has left them without a meaningful agenda...”


Zipriztin ekonomikoak (20)

(i) EZKERRA: aldatu ala hil

Bill Mitchell-ek dioenez, The demise of the Left:

the Left has abandoned progressive policy positions and, increasingly, moved towards a neo-liberal stance in macroeconomic policy, which has left them without a meaningful agenda...”


Borrokak segitzen du

(ii) NO EURO

Costas Lapavitsas – III Forum Internazionale No Euro1

(iii) Randy Wray, Pavlina Tcherneva eta Warren Mosler

Pavlina R Tcherneva@ptcherneva

Without Warren… there would be no Modern Money Theory.” A brief history of #MMT by Randy Wray … @wbmosler

2016 ira. 22

(Gogoratu ondoko hau: Randall Wray-k DTM-ren historia)


Italy Is The EU’s Weakest Link2

Italy’s Crisis Is Worsening

Italy’s economy is weak. There is no growth. The banking system is in bad shape. Unemployment is high. There is substantial public unrest, and Renzi’s standing is weakening. Italy has been somewhere between recession and stagnation since 2008. After eight years, the situation shows no signs of improving.

The Italians want to run a substantial budget deficit to stimulate the economy. The EU operates under a “stability pact.” This requires countries to keep deficits within certain limits but allows for exceptions.

France has operated outside the boundaries of the stability pact for years. Spain and Portugal were given exceptions as well. As Merkel put it, “The stability pact has a lot of flexibility, which we have to apply in a smart way.”

I’m not sure what “a smart way” looks like, but the issue does not apply to Italy. Renzi said, “Italy’s deficit has been at the lowest level of the last ten years.” He said that he “would go ahead with structural reforms and deficit reductions for the good of [Italy’s] children.”

In other words, Renzi said that he would further tighten spending. (…)

Renzi’s Motives

Increased austerity has not worked in eight years. Accepting that Renzi is not insane, it is hard to understand why he thinks this move will work any time soon. (…)

Nationalism in Italy Is on the Rise

In either case, the budget will be extremely unpopular and impose several more years of austerity. It will generate an exit movement, with proponents arguing that EU-imposed austerity caused these problems in the first place. The faster they get out of the EU the better.

For all I know, maverick Renzi lives, and he is doing this to trigger this movement. But whether or not he favors leaving the EU, there will be a movement as a result of this budget.

The argument for staying in the EU will be that Italy can’t get better without the EU. The argument for leaving the union will be that Italy will never get better if it stays.(…)”

(v) Native American people: Cherokee Nation

The Other Side of Me3

I am a Native American – Cherokee, to be specific. (…)

What’s wrong with reservations? Gee, I dunno – what’s wrong with malnutrition, unacceptable infant mortality rates, poverty, alcohol, gambling and drug abuse? Apparently, nothing is wrong with such a thing to the US government. Now, some people will point out that tribes have direct control over the rez and policies like putting in casinos and such, but I don’t look at the micro nonsense that tells me jack squat about the real problem. I look at the macro and when I do, I see human beings left to suffer and die needlessly. Tribes, like any other entity in the non-government sector, use US Dollars as a currency. If they do not, then explain the casinos please, because unless the slot machines spit out wampum or gold dust, I have a problem with your “Listen here, tribal governments are in charge, buddy” argument.

(…) the US government alone is the currency issuer, it is clear that the US government both creates the problem on reservations and it is the only entity that can eliminate the problem on reservations, which it accomplishes through net spending. In other words, Congress has to finally realize that Native Americans are both Americans and human beings, (…). It is clear that building hospitals, schools, roads, sewer, water treatment plants, electricity and other infrastructure projects on reservations are not impossible for the US as long as those resources can be accessed (purchased) with US Dollars.

Employment is needed here badly, precisely because tribes are users of the government’s currency. Because a monetary economy exists, there is unemployment. That reality extends to Native American tribes whether tribal government’s are in charge of things on the “rez” or not. Tribal government’s are no different than any local government in this context. They require dollars to function properly and if they do not have enough, then conditions will quickly become undesirable. Studies show that the effects of long-term unemployment are alcohol and drug abuse, mental and physical illness, a rise in crime rates and social collapse. Look at many of these reservations and then tell me what you see. Exactly that. By deficit spending for full employment and the dignity of Native Americans on reservations, jobs at decent wages will be created, building infrastructure and so, prosperity will be guaranteed from the tribal use of that infrastructure. And like any other local government does, tribal government’s engage in maintaining commerce with private entities. (…)

If Native Americans have dollars to spend, business will be drawn to it like flies. In conjunction with proper fiscal policy that targets full employment and the public purpose for the entire US, this in turn guarantees permanent, decent-paying jobs for Native Americans while allowing them to preserve their culture. It does not require the erasure of Native American governance nor does it require forced assimilation into American culture in order to achieve prosperity. Look at the Cherokee Nation as an example. Native American governance and culture can remain quite intact and yet, there can be human dignity and prosperity. (…)

(vi) JOB GUARANTEE: Mosler eta Mitchell

MMT: A Job Guarantee Would Set An Effective Minimum Wage4

Warren Mosler and Bill Mitchell discussing the minimum wage impact of a Job Guarantee policy. A Job Guarantee would set a true minimum wage: any person working a job at less than the JG wage could quit and join the program, pushing those wages up. A similar effect could happen with benefits. This would help to reduce income inequality, by setting a positive wage floor, since the current wage floor is zero for unemployed people.”


Nathan Becker@netbacker5

So what exactly is the definition of being economically sovereign?

2016 ira. 22

(viii) Mariana Mazzucato

(a) New Times: Mariana Mazzucato on why it’s time for progressives to rethink capitalism6

A progressive economic agenda must have at its heart an understanding of wealth creation as a collective process. Yes, businesses are wealth creators, but they do not create wealth alone. Workers, public institutions and civil organisations are also wealth creators. Their collective actions can increase the investments required to drive long-run growth and productivity. But this will happen only if the private and public sectors find a way to share the risks and rewards of the 21st century.”

(b) A real industrial revolution7

Smart growth requires smart government and this requires building capacity and capabilities within public institutions. The current trend of outsourcing government capacity and privatising government assets must be rethought, free from ideology. Creating mission-driven public institutions, where it is an honour for the most talented to work, is a first step in reversing the brain drain and the dismantling of the state.”


Seth D. Michaels@sethdmichaels8

this is an excellent piece by @AlanaSemuels: …

Warren B. Mosler@wbmosler

@sethdmichaels @AlanaSemuels I’ve always said it this way: “seems to me the entire financial sector is largely parasitic

2016 ira. 23

‘Derecho a decidir’ eta ‘Gure esku dago’

(a) Derecho a decidir!

“Una de las primeras opciones para gobernar será el PSE”

(b) Gure esku dago!

La meta de Sabino Arana era un Estado vasco, hoy ya no”


Mosler: news (berriak)

E-posten trukaketa…

To: warren.mosler@
Subject: RE: Randall Wray-k DTM-ren historia
Date: Fri, 23 Sep 2016 15:47:56 +0200

Ok. Thanks!




From: warren.mosler@
Date: Fri, 23 Sep 2016 09:46:09 -0400
Subject: Re: Randall Wray-k DTM-ren historia

Will be in Italy for 3 days in October, then UK for a day for several meetings.

No Spain plans.




On Fri, Sep 23, 2016 at 9:43 AM, . <> wrote:

And from you too, Maestro!

Are you planing to come to Europe? Catalonia?



From: warren.mosler@
Date: Fri, 23 Sep 2016 06:29:59 -0400
Subject: Re: Randall Wray-k DTM-ren historia

good to hear from you!

On Fri, Sep 23, 2016 at 1:44 AM, . <> wrote:

Dear Warren,

Thanks a lot from the Basque Country. Mila esker!

All the best!



Warren Mosler

Valance Company, Inc.

5001 Tamarind Reef 

Christiansted, USVI  00820

340 718 7710 office

Donate to the Pan Mass Challenge-

100% of all donations go directly to fund Dana Farber cancer research!

Because we fear becoming the next Greece, we continue to turn ourselves into the next Japan

‘The 7 Deadly Innocent Frauds’

The financial sector is a lot more trouble than it’s worth

“Do not give dogs what is holy; do not throw your pearls before swine. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces.”  

Mathew 7:6

Randall Wray-k DTM-ren historia

R. Wray-ren WHY ARE WE GATHERED HERE? Remarks Made at the 13th International Post Keynesian Conference1

Binzagr Institute@BinzagrInfo2

Prof. L. Randall Wray speaking about his intellectual journey @UMKC as he retires after 17 years of service.

2016 ira. 17

(i) Sarrera, Landon Rowland-i buruz3

(ii) Bide luze eta arraroa izan da4

(iii) Warren Mosler-en garrantzia: 1000 hitzeko lan akademiko bat esaldi batean murrizteko gai5

(iv) Mat Forstater eta Pavlina Tcherneva6

(v) Pavlina Tchernev: 1996ko Bretton Woods7

(vi) Bretton Woods-erako gonbidatuak8: R, Wray, Paul Davidson, Charles Goodhart, …


(vii) Bide luze eta arraroa9, ezer ez zen berria10, munduko sistema finantzario errealaz Warren-en laguntzarekin11

(viii) Hasieran ekonomialari ortodoxoak konbentzitzea erraza zela uste zuten12

(ix) Baina okertuta zeuden13

(x) DTM-ren desafio berria: esanahi egokiak lortzea14

(xi) Warren goraipatua, berriz: diru-laguntza, ikasleei emandakoa eta irakasleak ekartzeko egindakoa…, ulermena zabaltzeko ahalegina15: to advance understanding

(xii) Scott Fullwiler, Stephanie Kelton, Pavlina Tcherneva16


(xiii) Wray-ren erretiroa UMKC-tik17

Gehigarria: Iruzkina18

Scott Fullwiler | September 22, 2016

FYI for everyone . . . Randy didn’t retire from being a professor/scholar. He retired from UMKC and went to the Levy Institute. He’s still going to be as active as ever, just not at UMKC. This speech was from an event at UMKC, where he has obviously left a tremendous legacy.

3 Ingelesez: “The following text reproduces my notes for my talk on the final night of the conference; I think there is a video of the entire panel that will be posted up on the conference site later

This conference is dedicated to the memory of Landon Rowland, a local Renaissance man. You have heard both Robert Skidelsky and Chancellor Leo Morton speak of his accomplishments.

Over the years, Landon regularly invited Bill Black and me to lunch to discuss our view of the state of the world. We’d meet at a local restaurant where all the wait-staff knew Mr. Rowland by name, and knew where he wanted to sit and what he liked to eat.

He’d praise the work of our department and ask how the university was treating us. Well, we don’t have to go into that now, on this joyous occasion. He always promised to put in a good word with the Chancellor. I’m sure he did.

He was a major contributor to the last three meetings of our conference. He expected nothing in return but stimulating presentations.

His generosity and enthusiasm were critical to the success of the last conference and to the existence of this one. I was ready to hang it up. He and Lord Skidelsky conspired to talk me into one more. Both of them found funds to ensure there would be a conference in 2016. Robert paid the costs of setting up the internet site. Landon paid the costs of bringing in the Keynote speakers. Unfortunately he couldn’t be with us tonight.

I talked to him through his illness. He was always upbeat. He learned all he could about his rare affliction—that dated back to his youth when he was exposed to asbestos while working in maintenance in the apartment complex where he lived with his family after his father’s death. He embraced alternative, radical, cures and was happy to be the guinea pig. When he thought it was time to get an assistant to help in some daily tasks, he asked for an economics graduate student.

For the intellectual stimulation.

That’s a rare individual who would seek out a budding economist for scintillating conversation. Most people would rather have their teeth drilled.

Landon had a long life, but it was cut too short. I know he would be especially happy to be here tonight, as we celebrate the UMKC economics department’s contributions to heterodox economics. For those who are interested in a short note about his life, please see this.”

4 Ingelesez: “I want to do some thank-yous, but I also want to explore why we are here tonight. What a long strange trip it has been.”

5 Ingelesez: “First there is Warren Mosler, who stumbled on the old PKT (Post Keynesian Thought) discussion group—I think it was the first online venue that brought together heterodox economists. Without Warren you would not be here tonight, and there would be no Modern Money Theory. That is the unvarnished truth.  Warren brought the reality of the real world to academic economics in a manner that is exceedingly rare. His penetrating challenges forced a handful of us to reinterpret what we knew—what was already staring us straight in the face.

In retrospect, it is now all so clear. It is so clear that our long-time critics now claim that all the essentials of MMT were always obvious to them—no matter how hard they fought against that obviousness.

As an outsider who knew finance, Warren could cut through the fog of academics. The theme of this particular conference is standing on the shoulders of giants. I like the metaphor, which I learned from Minsky (and which he got from his professor). But sometimes standing on the shoulders of giants puts your head right in the midst of the fog.

Sometimes, you are better off at ground level. Warren has that knack of taking down a 10,000 word academic exercise with a simple phrase: taxes drive money; bonds are a reserve drain; government spends through keystrokes; currency issuers cannot run out; the government’s debt is the nongovernment sector’s net financial asset.

That is all obvious to you now. Before Warren it was not. Your head was in the fog.

6 Ingelesez: “Second, there is Mat Forstater, who had the good sense to recommend Pavlina Tcherneva to Warren when he posted a request for a good research assistant to do a literature search—to find the giants whose shoulders he didn’t need for understanding, but who might prove useful in selling the ideas.”

7 Ingelesez: “Without Pavlina there never would have been the 1996 meeting at Bretton Woods that served as the first conference for what would become MMT. It was titled “A Framework for Macroeconomic Analysis”.

8 Ingelesez: “Warren invited me and my family. Frankly I wasn’t sure I should go. I wrote to Paul and Louise Davidson, who had just visited Warren at his Florida house. By all means, they said, Warren is a gracious and generous host.

Warren brought together Post Keynesian academics and financial markets practitioners to hammer out the beginnings of MMT—people like Charles Goodhart and Basil Moore, as well as Alex Pollock of the Federal Home Loan Bank, and David Mittlelman and Maurice Samuels who manage Harvard’s endowment.

Today we celebrate the 20th anniversary of that meeting, along with the 70th anniversary of the other Bretton Woods meeting. Truly auspicious.

For 20 years Pavlina has been in the thick of it. She joined Mat and me at the Levy Institute—she worked in the forecasting center—and then she moved with us to UMKC in 1999. The rest is history, as they say.

9 Ingelesez: “It has been a long strange trip. When we began a bit over 20 years ago, I thought the parameters of the trip were pretty clear. We were borrowing the insights from great minds of heterodoxy to integrate then-current strands of research.

Endogenous money and central bank interest rate targeting; Keynesian theory of effective demand; rejection of the orthodox analogy of a government budget constraint, replaced by an understanding of sovereign currency; repudiation of the notion of a Phillips Curve in favor of an Institutionalist approach to the labor market and wage setting; close institutional analysis of actual operating procedures; and careful examination of the history of money in place of the Robinson Crusoe barter story.

10 Ingelesez: “None of it was new. It was a conscious integration of all the traditions I had studied as a student...”

11 Ingelesez: “... —helped immeasurably by Warren’s understanding of the real world financial system.

12 Ingelesez: “Warren thought it would be easy to win over the entire profession; he thought it would take a few months—maybe a couple of years at the outside. We’d win Nobel Prizes. I was somewhat skeptical. Warren was used to dealing with really smart people in financial markets. I was used to dealing with academic economists with careers and reputations on the line—where being right carries no rewards; (…)

I knew that a repackaging of heterodoxy was not going to go over well with mainstream economists, who would have to reject everything they had ever done.

13 Ingelesez: “However, I will admit that I thought we’d have a relatively easy time with heterodox economists. I was wildly wrong. To some extent, our belief that it would be easy is what made it hard. We did not always explain ourselves well. We were too impatient. And we got too defensive when we were criticized by those who didn’t understand what we were saying.

14 Ingelesez: “It took a long time, but I’ve learned that it is impossible to eliminate ambiguity with mere words. No matter how hard you try, it is not what you write, but how it is interpreted that wins the day. This is the new frontier for MMT—how can we elicit the proper interpretation, with the frames that can trigger the right neural connections. No one thinks with her brain (…). To many of our heterodox brethren, it just sounds immoral to say that the government cannot run out of money.”

15 Ingelesez: “I had hoped to have Warren here for this celebration so that we could together acknowledge his contributions to this conference, to the UMKC program, and to revitalizing Post Keynesian economics more generally.

Warren declined. It would have been a bittersweet affair. I’m embarrassed by the way my university and my fellow heterodox economists sometimes treated Warren. I wish we could make it up to him.

He contributed something like $4 million to the effort—supporting the PK conference in Knoxville and after its move to KC.

He supported many dozens of UMKC PHD students over a period of almost a decade. He made it possible to bring many visiting scholars to UMKC to enliven discussion. Our program’s success would have been impossible without Warren.

Again, that is the unvarnished truth. Without Warren, UMKC would still be sitting in the middle of the MidWest. Because of Warren, it sits in the Center of the Universe—to borrow one of his phrases.

He contributed funds to a number of other academic institutions, too. He never expected nor asked for anything in return. This was philanthropy of the highest order—to advance understanding.”

16 Ingelesez: “Lastly, I’d like to thank a few of the PhD students with whom I worked closely over the years.

I served on Scott Fullwiler’s dissertation committee. He told me he had worked through my 1990 Money and Credit book in preparation. I told him that is nice, but endogenous money is a pretty trivial advance. He had to read my much more important forthcoming 1998 book, Understanding Modern Money. He did. And he’s made major contributions to MMT ever since. He’s now replacing me at UMKC.

Stephanie Kelton wasn’t technically a student but she’s been with me since the Denver days. I don’t have to recount her contributions to MMT, and also to injecting a tiny bit of sanity into American policy making. UMKC remains in good hands.

Back to the students. I already mentioned Pavlina—My student, my friend, and now my Chair at Bard. If you live long enough and have good enough students, I guess that happens.”

17 Ingelesez: “I retired from UMKC as of August 31. It was a good run—17 years here, after a dozen years at Denver before that. I get restless, but I retired mostly for family reasons. I thank my colleagues and students for the good times.