Friday, May 24, 2013

News from the Network, Vol. 6, No. 21


Shades of The Informer.  We admit this one has us completely baffled.  An Irish student who was in the United States legally on a student visa had her visa revoked and was told (in effect) to “get out of Dodge” by mid-June.  This was after she was turned in to U.S. authorities . . . by a group funded by the Irish government established to help Irish immigrants.

She would have been better treated had she been an illegal immigrant working illegally instead of engaging in a technical violation of her visa to forestall becoming a public charge.  I hope that the group that informed on her, the Boston-based “Irish International Immigrant Center,” got whatever reward had been offered for the apprehension of such miscreants.  It used to be £5 for a priest or a wolf.

Of course, if the student had a Capital Homestead Account generating enough income for her so that she didn’t have to violate her visa by picking up survival money by working as a barmaid, all of this would have been moot.  So, here’s what we’ve been doing to rectify that situation and decriminalize working and owning for a living:

• True to form in a stock market bubble, prices on the secondary markets have been fluctuating wildly.  All the experts seem to be ignoring the fact that all the money being poured into existing shares is backed not by private sector hard assets, but by government debt.  This is similar to what happened in 1929 when massive money creation resulted in high “demand-pull” inflation that drove up the price of stocks artificially.  The difference between then and now, of course, is that 1) there was at the same time money creation for new capital investment; so much so that there was a temporary over-supply of consumer durables, giving the illusion of the dreaded Keynesian “market glut.”  2) Even the money created for stock speculation was backed by private sector hard assets — greatly over-valued, true, but the assets existed.  Today’s massive money creation is backed only by government debt — meaning the ability of the government to collect taxes in the future . . . which becomes increasingly unlikely if there is little or no new capital formation or even replacement to keep up production, and jobs disappear without being replaced by capital ownership to keep up the consumer demand that drives the economy.

• Norman Kurland, president of CESJ, attended a seminar at the New America Foundation, where the speaker was Gar Alperovitz. [http://www.garalperovitz.com/]  Go to “minute 49” of the video to see Norm’s questions and Gar’s responses.  Let us know if you’d like to see an exchange between Norm and Gar on the relative merits of our respective approaches, especially in Cleveland, where great progress is being made.

• We are seeing increasing evidence that academia and the political world is coming to the realization that they have run out of ideas.  A letter to the Wall Street Journal regarding an op-ed piece by Phil Gramm and Steve McMillin this past week did not get a response from the Journal, but Mr. McMillin, to whom we sent a cc., praised the letter for its insightful analysis, particularly the observation that paying down the national debt does not mean that the money supply will disappear.  Instead, restoring the Federal Reserve to its proper function of financing private sector growth instead of monetizing government deficits will match the money supply directly to the present value of existing and future marketable goods and services.  Adding that all new money created for new capital formation must be done in ways that expands the number of capital owners will ensure that consumption demand and production are either in, or close to equilibrium.

• The response to CESJ’s critics we’ve been working on is being revised, but should be ready soon.  It takes time to put together a reasoned response, rather than to just throw thoughts out at random.

• As of this morning, we have had visitors from 62 different countries and 50 states and provinces in the United States and Canada to this blog over the past two months. Most visitors are from the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and India. People in Japan, Ireland, the United States, Argentina and Maldives spent the most average time on the blog. The most popular postings this past week were “Thomas Hobbes on Private Property,” “Aristotle on Private Property,” “Defining Money, VII: Expanded Capital Ownership,” “Social Justice IV: The Characteristics of Social Justice,” and “Defining Money, VI: The Real Bills Doctrine.”

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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