A Blog of the Global Justice Movement

Friday, July 16, 2010

News from the Network, Vol. 3, No. 28

The stock market was 'way down last week. Then it was 'way up. This afternoon it closed 'way down. Yesterday, everyone was cautious, but this morning the prophets of profit were hinting that the worst was over . . . at least until this afternoon. You'd think by this time somebody would be catching on that they're being played for suckers.

First, of course (as Harold Moulton pointed out about three-quarters of a century ago), the key factors in a recovery are 1) employment, and 2) production. Guess what we don't have in this alleged "recovery." Too late, time's up. I'll tell you the answer: 1) employment, and 2) production. Instead, what we have is a replay of the stock market volatility that preceded the Crash of 1929, which in turn precipitated the Great Depression II.

For anyone keeping count, the Great Depression I was 1893 to 1897, the Great Depression II was 1930 to 1938, while the Great Depression III is still going on. Using some kind of pseudo regression analysis, we can't decide whether the current Great Depression will wind up in either 2020 or 2024. It depends on whether each Great Depression is four years longer than the previous one, or the duration is twice as long.

We could, of course, render the entire question moot by adopting Capital Homesteading by 2012. The push to enact the legislation might be sufficient to get things kick started by late 2010 or early 2011. After all, Moulton noted that the Federal Reserve staved off economic catastrophe in 1919-1920 not because it actually did anything, but because people believed that it was doing something. As Charles Morrison remarked in 1854, take confidence away, and everything comes grinding to a halt. Restore confidence, and people begin to wonder how things could ever get bad again. (Easy: forget to install and maintain the necessary structural changes embodied in the Capital Homestead Act. Confidence is only going to take you so far if it doesn't have anything to work on. We would then only have Great Depression IV . . . this time it's personal . . . to look forward to.)

In any event, here's what we've been doing to try and eliminate the possibility of Great Depressions IV through XXVII:
• As you recall from last week, we submitted the files for Dr. Harold G. Moulton's The Formation of Capital and CESJ's new presentation of the case for a pro-life economic agenda, Supporting Life to the printer on Friday. A few days ago we received notice that the proof copy of Supporting Life had been sent . . . but we haven't received it yet. We haven't received notice that Moulton's book has been sent. We had hoped to have them ready for display at tomorrow's board meeting, but in the meantime we can continue to refine our marketing materials.

• With respect to marketing, be sure to start making e-mail lists of people in your network who you think might want to receive a copy of the announcement of the books. Do NOT send these addresses to CESJ. Instead, when CESJ sends the flyer to you, you foreword it to your network.

• The first monographs in the "CESJ Green Paper" series are currently under review. These are short treatments of specific subjects in the Just Third Way. The two currently in review are The Political Animal, a study of humanity's unique combination of individual and social, and The Restoration of Property, a look at the possibilities for restoring private property in the means of production as a usual thing in our society.

• Also in process are the recent blog series on "French Financial Experiments," and the series on common currencies that is scheduled to be finished this coming Monday.

• Steve Neskis has been making great strides in developing CESJ's video capacity. Most of the details are beyond the technical competence of this writer, or we'd be able to give you a more in-depth report.

• A number of letters have been sent to the Wall Street Journal recently, drawing their attention to the fact that there is something else possible besides stale Keynesian economics or any other kind of State control of people's lives. The Journal has not responded.

• As of this morning, we have had visitors from 36 different countries and 43 states and provinces in the United States and Canada to this blog over the past two months. Most visitors are from the United States, Brazil, the UK, Canada, and Poland. People in France, Argentina, Spain, the United States, and the Czech Republic spent the most average time on the blog. The most popular posting is the posting on General McChrystal, followed by the piece on "Le Armée Catholique et Royale" from the "Out of the Depths" series on French financial experiments. This is followed by the posting on von Hayek's "comeback," the Right Way to Raise Wages, and Why the Credit Crunch Won't Go Away.
Those are the happenings for this week, at least that we know about. If you have an accomplishment that you think should be listed, send us a note about it at mgreaney [at] cesj [dot] org, and we'll see that it gets into the next "issue." If you have a short (250-400 word) comment on a specific posting, please enter your comments in the blog — do not send them to us to post for you. All comments are moderated anyway, so we'll see it before it goes up.

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