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18 December 2015


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Followed and cheered you right up to this: "It is a non-profit entity that provides services without creating money to pay for them other than fees at parks and similar trivialities. It gets its money by a levee on the consumers of the services."

Colonel, you need to read this book. You can buy it at Amazon, or you can download it for free here:

If you're not in the mood, then listen to this audio of the Modern Monetary Theory Summit at Rimini, Italy while you're cleaning something. Dr. Stephanie Kelton is a clear unemotional factual speaker; you will enjoy listening to her; about 29 minutes for her part. (There are other talks from this conference that are worthwhile.)

Another short paper, the first few pages about what changed when we went off the gold standard domestically in 1934 are the important part:
Chairman of Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 1946

And don't yell at me for pointing these out. All the economic textbooks should have been chucked in 1971 when we finally became a fully sovereign non-convertible currency on a floating exchange rate--and all the benefits that entails--when Nixon took us off the gold standard internationally on August 15 of that year.

(Incidentally, it was going off the gold standard in 1934 that gave the US the power to finance WWII as Jim Lacey's 2011 book "Keep From All Thoughtful Men" details. Military Historian Williamson Murray said of the book "Quite simply Jim Lacey has overturned nearly 60 years of sloppy work by historians." As Lacey states on page 33: "Moreover, World War II was the first war where money was truly no object. ... Everything American industry could turn out the government could afford to buy.")



"Colonel, you need to read this book" No. I don't meed to read any books about the US goverment. The author should have interviwred me. I suppose that you are an academic or you would never have suggested such a ridiculous thing. Academics understand little of reality. They are engaged in unending mutual masturbation with their colleagues and by and large have never been in the fray. pl


Talk about the unscripted, non-branded days of political conventions--Chicago '68 of course--brings to mind Sen. Ribicoff's nominating speech, which he threw away, and instead railed against Daley and his "gestapo tactics".

And Daley gave it right back--booing and cursing Ribicoff as he spoke.

All on live TV.

You really didn't know what would happen next and about anything seemed possible. Chairs being thrown and arrests wouldn't have surprised anyone.

Politicians with raw undisguised passion in full public view--think about it, it would never happen now.

William R. Cumming

Important to note that NO federal official has authority to direct any STATE and/or their local officals as to how to do their job barring federal pre-emption of the field or activity.

Chris HUNT

A very interesting and educational read. The author's years of front-line monetary and credit experience provides insights that have helped me. If, in fact, you are an "academic" your mission of enlightening the unenlighted is working. Thanks for sharing.


Seems like the Republicans are gulping down the diversity kool aid. Couldn't get enough people of color, with that AA hack Condi Rice talking out of her ass yet again. Marco Rubio, exiled scion of Cuban royalty acting as if he has a clue what is going on with our Southwest Border because he pronounces his vowels funny. Not a word about things that matter to thier base - gotta prove to the coastal elites how diverse the Republicans are.

All so we can get another bland "anyone but _____" candidate who is going to do exactly what Obama tried to do with immigration (except the Republicans will go in with it) while going to war with Iran?

No, no. Fuck it.


RE: the idea has taken hold that politics is merely a sub-division of marketing. People prattle of "market shares," "media markets," TV "buys," and above all "branding," as though we are engaged in buying f-----g toothpaste.

Col. sir,

I'm reminded of NASCAR for some reason along with other "all-American" sports.


RE: "his cretin business friends seem to believe, as does he, that he would arrive in Washington with the discretionary power of a corporate CEO....

Payback is a bitch."

Thrones, and imperial powers, off-spring of heaven,
Æthereal virtues; or these Titles now
Must we renounce, and changing stile be call'd
Princes of hell?

Thrones, Dominations, Princedoms, Virtues, Powers...


Chris Hunt

If you are a student everything is educational. Anything a professor tells you is golden.I am not a student. pl


I'm not sure I would characterize that aspect of the convention as pandering "to the coastal elites" as much as I would call it pandering to demographic reality. Unless the gop can figure out a way to recapture some larger percentage of the Hispanic vote in national elections--I believe Bush got up to 35%--its future in states such as Arizona and even Texas looks more and more problematic.

If anything, Obama has been able to thread that needle a bit, deporting record numbers of illegal immigrants while simultaneously offering a sop via the "dream act" executive order.

Going further afield, I'm not sure that a crackdown on illegal immigration is at all unwelcomed by the majority of the Hispanic community, but I think that subtle demonization of Hispanics in general is. And the gop will have to figure out a way to get out of that meme which, fairly or unfairly, it has been depicted as using to rouse the nativist portion of its base.


Yes, didn't some comedian once say that politicians should wear NASCAR type outfits emblazoned with the names and logos of their sponsors?

Think about how many folks were snookered by Obama's hope and change advertising con.

And that campaign did win Ad Award's best marketing award for 2008.


Col. Lang has more wisdom & judgment in his little finger than ten college professors. I think Dr Isaac Asimov said of PhD's. " they learn more & more about less & less until they know everything about nothing."

Therby, know all men by these presents, that he is awarded the honourary degrees of Master and Doctor of the fine art of evaluating knowledge for usefulness (intelligence work) from the School of Hard Knocks.

Bill H

George W. Bush is the first president I can recall ever addressing the nation and referring to himself as "your commander in chief." Obama uses the term less often than Bush does, but I have heard him refer to himself the same way. It annoys me immensely. Other presidents were at one time my commander in chief, because I was in the military, but if the current president orders me to do something I am at complete liberty to tell him to go jump in a lake. It does my heart good on the rare ocassions that people like our colonel point that out.

I also enjoy seeing pointed out the sheer idiocy of the promises that candidates make as to what they will do in the way of cutting taxes and establishing laws that will never be within their power to do, as if they are somehow going to replace Congress. Unfortunately, the laziness and/or greed of the average American voter leads him to believe the promises and vote accordingly.

Bill H

Well said. That would be especially true of economists.


Obama hasn't been deporting more of anyone - its just his administration fudging the numbers as usual. Before Obama, when we caught aliens at the border, they were kicked back via voluntary return or expedited return. These are not deportations in a legal sense. Instead his administration has consistently pared down immigration enforcement to the point where an ICE/HSI agent in Delaware is facing disciplinary action for arresting and attempting to deport an illegal alien. You have "enforcement priorities" that make it a disciplinary offense to arrest illegal aliens now.

His "threading the needle" is more fait accompli Unitary Executive bullshit that the Democrats screamed about under Bush while the Republicans have made a whole lot of sound and fury. Well, some of them. Most are in the pocket of the business wing of the GOP and now here we are at real unemployment around 15%+ and we are being told we need more illiterate mestizos.

What is a "hispanic"? It is a made up term by government census takers hijacked by Mexican racial activists to try and unite the broad range of South and Central Americans under one racial bloc for political purposes. A Mexican, a Cuban, and a Chilean are all radically different people. Yet the Republican Party, the Stupid Party, keeps on thinking that they're all Mexican peasants and need to be pandered to as such.


If the government were financed solely by printing money, it would double the supply of Federal Reserve Notes in its first year, as there are about $2 trillion worth of them (M0 + special notes for banks). The only way this could work would be to reduce reserve ratios and general leverage in the financial system to the point where you could have yearly 2+ trillion dollar yearly (20% or so of GDP, really) increases in M0 while maintaining smooth growth in M2 (and maybe m3, I am a bit out of my "knowing everything about nothing" zone here, there are velocity issues, etc.). That this deleveraging is possible is shown here:
Reducing the leverage of the financial system means reducing the profits (if all else is held constant). The deeper problem would be that the ROI of decent capital allocation decisions would be reduced, and hence maybe the quality of work on them.

Our current deep problem, IMHO, is that our financial system is too focused on wealth preservation rather than financing real economic activity. The main symptom of this is the derivatives trade. This is feeding back on itself in such a way that decent capital allocation decisions seem decoupled from the real economy. On top of that, what is being financed in the real economy is socially destabilizing, in terms of where jobs are being created and wealth is accumulating. I learned that an apartment in Shenzhen costs about a lifetime of earnings. Things are so out of whack all over.


"What is a 'hispanic'?" Now that's a damn good question and both parties better figure out that there is no such homogenous group nor are they going to be perpetually beholden to any party more than any other group. As the old Janet Jackson song went - "What have you done for me lately".


Working around Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Hondurans, and Ecuadorians the differences are stark enough that the Republicans using a Cuban to pander to Mexicans would be hilarious if the stakes weren't so damn high.


At least for purposes of my above post, I referred to the term "hispanic" as a group which, on the whole, tends to vote fairly heavily democratic. This was in response to Tyler's position that the repub convention was pandering to the coastal elites.

My response was that the convention was pandering to demographic reality. The group popularly known as "hispanic" is growing by leaps and bounds, putting into jeopardy some traditionally republican states.

It was a minstrel show to be sure, full of minorities, just like the dem conflab will be, to get votes, not to appease coastal elites.

I offered no opinion as to the diverse nature of "hispanic" other than the political fact that they tend to vote democratic.

Paul Barrios

re: "What do they think Romney is going to do, stage a coup against the Congress?"

More like a leveraged buyout. With unlimited funds free to flow via unmonitored PACs (per Citizens United.)

Actually, he may not be able to think of that on his own. But Sheldon Adelson stands by ready to enable such schemes for convenient ends.


In regards to the hispandering, why can't it be both? The "beltway wisdom" is that somehow hispanics magically become Republican if we let more of them in. So we get Marco Rubio with more of that "nation of immigrants" shit that plays so well to coastal SWPLs and others who think Mexicans are great cause they like burritos, and don't understand what exactly is going on at the border.

The Republican base who typically cannot wall itself away in a whitopia and has to deal with and compete with the effects of unfettered illegal immigration has a much different opinion. However, actually saying that and doing something about it might make the idiots on "Morning Joe" and thier ilk explode with indignation.

The Republicans only have themselves to blame for the "jeopardy" they are in. The 1986 Amnesty was passed by Reagan, after all. Here in Arizona, the party sat on its hands instead of supporting anti-illegal immigration politicians.

So that's how we get the "look at how diverse we are minstrel show", because some political science professor of some stripe thinks that diversity is our strength or some shit like that.

Look for something like the Golden Dawn in Greece to start showing up in America, with all the scary fascist/Nazi connotations that the American media can hurl at it while it tries to do something for Americans and is unapologetically nationalist.



RE: how many folks were snookered by....hope and change advertising con.

"Washington is Hollywood for ugly people."

"Washington is L.A. with ugly faces."

"Politics is showbiz for ugly people."

"If you are too ugly for Hollywood, too stupid for New York, you can still be famous in Washington."

"If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog."




I was inspired to re-post this today because I am hearing Trump and his fans express the idea that he would be a good president because he is a businessman. Perhaps he would be a good president but having been a businessman would actually be IMO a handicap in achieving that. pl

William R. Cumming

As a 34 year government lawyer I could not fire the client nor could the client fire me. The real difference is not just being paid by the year as opposed to the hour but the above.

It must be interesting to see a CEO President learning how to govern rather than seek profits.


Trump is an entrepreneur, while Romney was always an employee, even as a partner in Baine and as a CEO. Trump was never an employee, has was an entrepreneur. Romney was never an entrepreneur, he was always an employee. Same with Fiorina. This is a radical difference.

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