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I think part of the problem with the current "austerity" is that we accept the premise of big gov't. "Austerity" now means feeding it at the same rate (or faster), while getting less out of it. Under crushing taxes and regulations, who is surprised that the economy is not taking off?

 

Perhaps people should think about permanently dismantling big chunks of said big gov't.

 

I am very saddened when I hear my friends in Spain complaining that "if government spending goes down, how is the economy going to recover??"

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What I see here is that business claims that government should not run things, they want government to sell off BC Hydro which they almost did, until the public outcry. BC Hydro was making money for the Province. Please explain to me why we should sell off the profitable bits and hold on to the crappy bits?

 

I bet if private business ran SAR or social housing they would fuck it up just as much as government. Some things just are not meant to run well.

Currently BCTS is building a 344km 287KV power line to what appears to be the middle of nowhere. Once completed though it means that about 6 mines and 5 power generation plants become fesiable. This is the sort of project that government does well, create the infastructure that allows businesses to flourish.

Edited by Colin
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I think part of the problem with the current "austerity" is that we accept the premise of big gov't. "Austerity" now means feeding it at the same rate (or faster), while getting less out of it. Under crushing taxes and regulations, who is surprised that the economy is not taking off?

 

Perhaps people should think about permanently dismantling big chunks of said big gov't.

 

I am very saddened when I hear my friends in Spain complaining that "if government spending goes down, how is the economy going to recover??"

Exactly. The "austerity" they speak of is an decrease in the rate of increased spending. They have been saying they need growth in GDP but the only growth they have been getting is growth of government. If they exclude government from the GDP they have negative growth.

On the bright side Australia just announced it is going to have a budget surplus this year.

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Interesting thing, I had a friend who worked for the Post Office. This was in the days when British Telecom was part of the post office (I gather it was called the GPO in those days). Anyway, year on year the post office put all the money it could find into telecommunications. The first year that side of the business made money (in the early1980s) the Government privatised it as British Telecom. A great success. Unfortunately they held onto the Post office which leaked money like a sieve.

The Royal Mail was nice & profitable in the 1980s. It still makes a modest operating profit in most years, though the letter delivery business has been losing money for several years, & with declining volumes its losses are getting worse.

 

It wasn't privatised for several reasons, including the feeling at the time that the universal service obligation was incompatible with private business.

 

History of profitability is on this general history site: http://postalheritage.org.uk/page/statistics

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BTW, the USA finally got over the Great Depression with pure Keynesianism. It massively increased government purchasing of manufactured goods, hired many millions of new government employees, & spent huge sums on infrastructure. The economy grew faster than ever before or since. After a few years it started cutting back, but the infrastructure was still there, as was the new productive capacity manufacturers had invested in to enable them to meet government orders, & the economy was permanently lifted to a higher level.

 

But I don't think we should start Word War Three just to perk up the economy.

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Austerity my ass. This link (in Greek) says that the government announced the yearly plan for 140.000 farmers to be given free or nearly freee holidays ! This includes 8 days in a hotel with 3 day excursions for wife and children. Plus for 300.000 farmers the subsidy for 20 euros for book purchases is also included. http://www.imerisia....pubid=112854624 This from a country that is on the verge of complete anarchy and will not have enough money to pay salaries by mid June... austerity my ass, they have just found the goose that lays the golden aggs and they will milk it till death.

 

Yep. And in my view there still exists an excellent chance of taking down the EU with them.

 

Time to procure myself some assless chaps and juice up the Turbo interceptor I think. :D

 

Do you have a newsletter or other publication to which I can subscribe? ^_^

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BTW, the USA finally got over the Great Depression with pure Keynesianism. It massively increased government purchasing of manufactured goods, hired many millions of new government employees, & spent huge sums on infrastructure. The economy grew faster than ever before or since. After a few years it started cutting back, but the infrastructure was still there, as was the new productive capacity manufacturers had invested in to enable them to meet government orders, & the economy was permanently lifted to a higher level.

 

But I don't think we should start Word War Three just to perk up the economy.

 

The argument that WWII ended the Depression always smelled fishy to me. WWII brought massive govt spending and intervention of all levels of the economy and industry... A New Deal on steroids. If the New Deal fared as it did, what caused the post war boom? I believe the de-regulation and dismantling of much of what was left of the New Deal that followed the elections of 1946 (often over Truman's veto) had much more to do with it.

Edited by Mikel2
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Apparently half the spending for green energetics projects went to people who had financially supported Obama, and after being funded many donated again.

 

If the money had gone towards infrasturcture projects Keynsian spending would have a better reputation.

 

I don't think that endlessly paying people unemployment stimulates the economy. It just diminishes the value of working.

 

Interesting article here about the Krugman issue:

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/battle-of-the-beards-paul-krugman-vs-ben-bernanke/2012/05/06/gIQAbwsY6T_story.html

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Austerity my ass.

This link (in Greek) says that the government announced the yearly plan for 140.000 farmers to be given free or nearly freee holidays ! This includes 8 days in a hotel with 3 day excursions for wife and children.

 

Plus for 300.000 farmers the subsidy for 20 euros for book purchases is also included.

http://www.imerisia....pubid=112854624

 

This from a country that is on the verge of complete anarchy and will not have enough money to pay salaries by mid June...

austerity my ass, they have just found the goose that lays the golden aggs and they will milk it till death.

These are pretty standard programmes payed for by the farmers' insurance fund (not the state budget) with money they paid.

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Lots of cheap, easy money just gets people doing stupid shit. Financing should be affordable and accessible but not stupid easy. Yet it is not the lack of financing that is stymieing the petit bourgeoisie but rather the mass of rules, laws and bureaucracy involved in setting up a new business and getting it going. There are too many damned lawyers in politics. They are like hammers...everything needs a new law. No, often less laws are needed. Worse, laws are written to take the place of personal responsibility and ethics.

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Greek agriculture was one of the major factors in creating the madcap EU Farm Policy. You ended up with farmers in England growing rapeseed because it was so lucrative, ostensibly to support Greek farms, which are not very productive. The Greek economy is dysfunctional. The loans were used to hide the problems. When it ran out, so did the excuses.

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Austerity my ass. This link (in Greek) says that the government announced the yearly plan for 140.000 farmers to be given free or nearly freee holidays ! This includes 8 days in a hotel with 3 day excursions for wife and children. Plus for 300.000 farmers the subsidy for 20 euros for book purchases is also included. http://www.imerisia....pubid=112854624 This from a country that is on the verge of complete anarchy and will not have enough money to pay salaries by mid June... austerity my ass, they have just found the goose that lays the golden aggs and they will milk it till death.

 

Yep. And in my view there still exists an excellent chance of taking down the EU with them.

 

Time to procure myself some assless chaps and juice up the Turbo interceptor I think. :D

 

Do you have a newsletter or other publication to which I can subscribe? ^_^

 

You like the idea of tanknetters in assless chaps? :blink: And you guys call me gay... ;) :P

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BTW, the USA finally got over the Great Depression with pure Keynesianism. It massively increased government purchasing of manufactured goods, hired many millions of new government employees, & spent huge sums on infrastructure. The economy grew faster than ever before or since. After a few years it started cutting back, but the infrastructure was still there, as was the new productive capacity manufacturers had invested in to enable them to meet government orders, & the economy was permanently lifted to a higher level.

 

Keynes recommended running budget deficits via tax cuts, whereas Roosevelt & Co. ran relatively balanced budgets but tried stimulus spending and massive central planning. Keynes wrote several letters to Roosevelt saying, in essence, "you're doing it wrong". For example,

 

http://newdeal.feri.org/misc/keynes2.htm

 

Thus as the prime mover in the first stage of the technique of recovery I lay overwhelming emphasis on the increase of national purchasing power resulting from governmental expenditure which is financed by Loans and not by taxing present incomes.

 

http://www.fee.org/articles/great-myths-of-the-great-depression/

 

The genesis of the Great Depression lay in the irresponsible monetary and fiscal policies of the U.S. government in the late 1920s and early 1930s. These policies included a litany of political missteps: central bank mismanagement, trade-crushing tariffs, incentive-sapping taxes, mind-numbing controls on production and competition, senseless destruction of crops and cattle and coercive labor laws, to recount just a few. It was not the free market that produced 12 years of agony; rather, it was political bungling on a grand scale.
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The argument that WWII ended the Depression always smelled fishy to me. WWII brought massive govt spending and intervention of all levels of the economy and industry... A New Deal on steroids. If the New Deal fared as it did, what caused the post war boom? I believe the de-regulation and dismantling of much of what was left of the New Deal that followed the elections of 1946 (often over Truman's veto) had much more to do with it.

 

Keep in mind that some of America's economic growth in 1939-1941 came from exports to the Allies. I guess we can give FDR partial credit for not blocking those sales, but that commerce came from deficit spending abroad, rather than at home.

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You like the idea of tanknetters in assless chaps? :blink: And you guys call me gay... ;) :P

 

All dystopic future scenarios end up with Tanknetters in assless chaps. Nuclear war, meteorite impact, global pandemic, worldwide economic collapse, extraterrestrial invasion; they all end with assless chaps and blokes driving around in supercharged V-8 coupes. Completely invevitable.

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Ivanhoe....enough with the dissent. The narrative is Wall Street bad, Washington good.

 

I thought dissent was patriotic. Or is that too 2007?

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Ivanhoe....enough with the dissent. The narrative is Wall Street bad, Washington good.

 

I thought dissent was patriotic. Or is that too 2007?

2007, 2008, 2009 (right up until noon on 20 Jan, when it suddenly became the lowest form of racism).

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But I don't think we should start Word War Three just to perk up the economy.

Don't have to. If government spending is the ticket to economic utopia, which many of you are implying, then building a bridge or two to the Sea of Tranquility should see us through the next 50 years or so.
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But I don't think we should start Word War Three just to perk up the economy.

Don't have to. If government spending is the ticket to economic utopia, which many of you are implying, then building a bridge or two to the Sea of Tranquility should see us through the next 50 years or so.

 

Why stop there? Let's build a high-speed rail to Pluto, with stops at Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn while we are at it.

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Why stop there? Let's build a high-speed rail to Pluto, with stops at Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn while we are at it.

I thought about that. We must think of the children not yet born of the children not yet born. They too will want to spend enormous amounts of money searching for the utopia of Shangri La.
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Light rail, mon freres, light rail. According to the local paper, light rail will stop global warming, raise test scores, bring peace and harmony, and lower unemployment to zero.

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