Friday, September 22, 2017

News from the Network, Vol. 10, No. 38

What with Trump and Kim Jong Un “exchanging insults,” earthquakes in Mexico, hurricanes in Puerto Rico, Texas, and Florida, it doesn’t seem as if there is very much good news to report from anywhere.  Still, we’ve managed to round up a few items that might help make your day a little brighter, or at least bearable:

Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Rise of Socialism

In theory, there is no reason why anyone with a financially feasible capital project cannot participate in the process of money creation by entering into a contract.  In practice, however, money creation is reserved to those who are already wealthy.  This is because they control collateral, the universal means for securing against financial risk.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Philosophies at War

In 1943 at the height of the Second World War, Fulton J. Sheen (1895-1979) published Philosophies at War.  The book gave Sheen’s perspective on the real source of the conflict.  A thematic follow-up to such earlier works as Religion Without God (1928), and Freedom Under God (1940), the work is not well known, and is very rare.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Greece on the Skids

It has been a while since Greece was in the news, but that doesn’t mean the situation there is any better . . . it just means that other things are more immediate, and more bright and shiny to catch the eye of the media.  The problem, however, is still with us — and by “with us,” we’re implying that the problem Greece faces right now is what is down the road for everybody once we’re too far gone down the path laid out for us by Keynesian economics.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Is Education the Answer?

When some says that something or other is the answer, we always have the impulse to say, “What is the question?”  If you aren’t asking the right question, frankly, any answer will do, just as if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.  Fortunately, today’s question was asking why governments are reacting to widespread unemployment and the disappearance of many jobs by advocating more education.

Friday, September 15, 2017

News from the Network, Vol. 10, No. 37

What with the surge in natural disasters, news on the Just Third Way front has slowed somewhat.  Still, there are a number of things that have been happening that suggest things may eventually be turning from the wrong way, to the Just Third Way:

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Stimulus and the Global Financial Crisis

Every now and then we get some questions or comments to which we can respond.  Oh, we don’t mean like the troll who, in response to our comment about how it’s better that government should go to the people for its money rather than the other way around, shrieked that there should be no government at all, that it’s a thief, that anarchy is the only ethical system!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Social Justice and the American Red Cross

As the result of what are perceived as inadequacies in the disaster relief efforts of the American Red Cross (ARC), some authorities are urging people not to contribute to the organization.  Granted that serious mistakes have been made, and that this writer has personal reasons for not contributing to the ARC, attempting to undermine the institution is itself a serious error, and the antithesis of social justice.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

A Taxing Problem: Production and Consumption

We’ve covered quite a bit on why a consumption tax might not be the best way to go in this short series.  We have one more reason, and it might not be one that occurs to most people simply because it is highly technical and gets into economic and financial theory.

Monday, September 11, 2017

A Taxing Problem: Own or Be Owned

We were going to talk about how a consumption tax distorts consumption patters today, but we might get to that tomorrow.  This is the good part about being “the Boss of the Blog.”  You can change your mind at the last minute and still not get fired or anything. . . .

Friday, September 8, 2017

News from the Network, Vol. 10, No. 36

While most people are quite properly focused on the remarkable series of natural disasters that have occurred over the past week — the “law of the urgent over the important” — we have been able to make some progress in advancing the solution to more manageable problems, such as war and the economy:

Thursday, September 7, 2017

A Taxing Problem: It’s STILL Regressive

Yesterday we looked at the problem of a consumption tax from the perspective of “rule of law.”  We decided (we did; we don’t know what you decided) that a consumption tax when it relies on people proving they spent as much as they did on consumption in order to get their exemption, is contrary to a sound philosophy of law that we call “rule of law.”

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

A Taxing Problem: Rule of Law

Abolishing the income tax sounds great at first glance.  Nobody likes to pay taxes anyway, and all the expletive deleted recordkeeping, penalties, interest, weird requirements, etc., etc., etc., only add insult to injury.  So why not have a national consumption tax of some kind instead of an income tax?  The regulatory burden would be much less, and everybody’s life would be much simpler, wouldn’t it?

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Universal Basic Income

There has been a lot of discussion recently about the UBI, the “Universal Basic Income,” by means of which every citizen . . . or maybe every person . . . or perhaps just those whom the government bureaucracy likes . . . or whatever, would receive enough cash to meet their needs adequately . . . or maybe just basic subsistence . . . or maybe something else, depending on who makes the decisions.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Happy Capital for Labor Day!

This past Friday, September 1, 2017, we read the “Labor Day Statement 2017” of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops by Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of Venice, Chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, September 4, 2017.  It’s dated today, but it was released last week . . . possibly to give its author a running start to get out of town ahead of angry mobs of the unemployed.

Friday, September 1, 2017

News from the Network, Vol. 10, No. 35

There is quite a bit going on this week, especially given the advances the Just Third Way is making in the media, what with the phenomenal increase in the audience for The Just Third Way Hour.  Although we have not yet received verifiable figures as to that audience size, there are already initiatives underway to leverage it to help get the word out:

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Money Creation for Dumbos

We don’t really mean what we say in the heading of this blog posting.  First, we couldn’t use “for Dummies,” because that one was already taken.  Second, our readers aren’t dummies.  Third, our readers aren’t flying elephants, either.  Come to think of it, “Money Creation Made Easy” might have been a better heading, except that money creation isn’t easy.  It is, however, quite simple.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Legal Counterfeiting

The late Paul Samuelson once quoted the late Irving Fisher regarding the monetary policies of the late John Maynard Keynes to the effect that what developed into Keynesian “Modern Monetary Theory” is, in reality, nothing more than “legal counterfeiting.”  While it is unusual to find so many defunct economists in agreement on this point, there is another that is even more remarkable:

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Crypto Currencies: Coin or Con Game?

Just yesterday the Wall Street Journal had an opinion piece by Mr. Andy Kessler, who writes for the Journal on technology and markets.  The article, “The Bitcoin Valuation Bubble” (August 28, 2017, A15) raised some interesting questions . . . such as, What is a “Bitcoin,” anyway?

Monday, August 28, 2017

Taxation and Representation

We're still having computer problems, but that will not stop "the Happy Revolution" . . . even though such things don't exactly make us completely happy!  (Obviously.)  Today we're featuring the (unedited) exchange we recently had on FaceBook with a commentator who is proposing a reform of the entire tax system, but — injudiciously in our opinion — has not considered the implications of his proposal, nor what taxation really is.

Friday, August 25, 2017

News from the Network, Vol. 10, No. 34

We have a correction to make from our previous News from the Network.  Due to our unfamiliarity with a lot of computer and internet terminology (and just plain ignorance about what was going on), we referred to the broadcasts by Dr. Norman G. Kurland, president of CESJ, as "podcasts."  No, they are broadcasts, not podcasts.  This has caused some confusion, as podcasts are posted on the internet and can be listened to at any time, while a broadcast just goes out, and must be re-broadcast if it is to be heard again.  Still, the audience being reached via these broadcasts is rather phenomenal, as you will agree:

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Experiencing Technical Difficulties . . . But We Carry On . . .

We're having a bit o' trouble with the old hard drive, and are (temporarily, we hope) unable to compose off-line and edit today's posting as we usually do.  That being the case — and since we are probably about to lose use of the computer for a few days, we decided to "cheat" a little and just post a conversation or two from FaceBook.  We hope soon to be able to get back to normal operations, and have all the neat graphics 'n stuff we've been having, but until then, we'll manage something.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Social Justice and the Common Good

Yesterday we looked at the common good, that vast network of institutions that create the environment within which human beings as political animals carry out daily life, suggesting that a justly structured common good is a fundamental building block of the Just Third Way.  Having gone over the basics of the common good, we are now prepared to do more than suggest such a thing.  We can come right out and say it:

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

What is “the Common Good”?

Just the other day we were talking about what we would do if we were putting together a series of educational videos or audio recordings or something like that.  Naturally, there was no dearth of suggestions about what to cover, e.g., “What is Money?” (a personal favorite, not that you’d know it from reading this blog. . . .), “What is Justice?”, “What is Private Property?” (are you detecting a certain theme here?), and so on.