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The Corbyn Manifesto

 

Corbyn on redJeremy Corbyn (JC) has said that if elected he would want to see the Labour Party democratically develop policies rather than impose his own, and that perhaps means that the policies he has proposed during the leadership campaign are less significant than should be assumed. Nevertheless, because what he has said has helped to inspire huge attendances at meetings and make him the front runner in the leadership contest it is obviously worthwhile to examine the policies he has proposed and what overall they represent.

It has to be said that these policies are not a blueprint for socialism. In fact they remain firmly within a social democratic framework, and reflect what was the norm in the period from 1945 to the early 80s. Indeed, a recent article on Left Futures has suggested that the policies of the SDP that broke away from Labour to the right in 1981 were to the left of what Corbyn is offering today. Why then is Corbynism being seen as something almost revolutionary, both by its right wing opponents and its numerous fervent supporters.

The answer surely is the extent to which the norm has moved rightwards, so that what was commonplace fifty years ago appears extreme today. Thatcherism begat Blairism, which saw no place for even the mildest form of social democracy, which Blair makes clear in his first criticism of Corbyn, where he says that even if Corbyn was to win it would be wrong to do so with his policies.

But in fact the move back towards social democracy began in a limited way under Ed Miliband and is contained in various parts of the recent manifesto, which included the following commitments which are also promoted by JC: a National Investment Bank, ending the Bedroom Tax, banning zero hours contracts, measures to reduce land hoarding, rent controls, carbon emission targets, democratic reform of the Lords, reducing the voting age to 16. Most of these didn’t surface in the election campaign and many JC supporters would probably be surprised that they were in Labour’s manifesto. Measures not mentioned by JC but in Labour’s manifesto include protecting agency workers, neighbourhood policing and, strangely, greater tenant security based on three year leases.

So let’s look at the JC proposals. Firstly , and most importantly, the economy. Here huge savings on business subsidies, higher taxes for big business and the better off and much more work in tackling tax evasion and avoidance are matched by a significant stimulus in the shape of ‘People’s Quantitative Easing’, channelled through a National Investment Bank, for housing, infrastructure and digital technology, and helped by a £10 living wage stimulus. However, there is, surprisingly, no mention of breaking up or exerting greater control over the big banks which even found its way into an earlier version of Labour’s manifesto.

Growth thus engendered would reduce the deficit while enabling cuts to be halted. However, huge savings would happen through not proceeding with HS2 and a renewal of Trident.

This programme has been recognised by many economists as realistic and moderate, and in line with the standard Keynesian approach of all governments up to the 1980s. Criticisms from Cooper and others about the dangers of inflation and overheating are, given the relatively depressed state of the economy, absurd, while QE has been widely used as a tool in the UK and elsewhere.

On energy nuclear would be phased out, with the use of ‘clean coal’. JC wants to nationalise the energy and water companies, at least through a ‘controlling interest’.

The nuclear ( energy ) debate has not yet really taken off here, but clearly the renationalisation of the energy companies ( unlike rail) would be very costly and is at best a long term project.

On housing JC wants 240,000 a year, half to be council housing for which councils will be given greater powers to borrow and suspend the right to buy, which will be extended to private tenants. The general aim is to increase supply and bring down prices. Much of the proposed QE would clearly be used here, unlike Labour’s manifesto proposals where financing was ambiguous, although tenant security was a stronger feature which JC doesn’t mention.

Free higher education is the major education policy, along with free childcare, the return of schools to local control, the ending of charitable status for private schools, more adult learning and apprenticeships, but surprisingly no mention of the ending of selection at 11+. The tuition fees abolition is hugely costly and might have been better dealt with through a graduate tax.

The railways would be nationalised! At last. A hugely popular policy which the Blairites will continue to resist because of what it symbolises.

Health will be integrated with social care, freed from the hugely wasteful PFI and from privatisation.

Europe is a key issue where JC has appeared ambiguous, although he has rightly called for policy to be to remain in the EU, based on defending workers rights and opposition to TTIP.

Defence is one of the most controversial areas, with the call not to renew Trident. Most of what has been written concerns how skills developed within the defence industries can be utilised elsewhere, but the argument against Trident is too implicitly pacifist and needs developing.

Likewise, the policy of leaving NATO was I think misconceived, although this has now been withdrawn. What is surely needed is to ask what NATO is for and what sort of military alliance is needed. However, JC has I think done well in opening up a debate about NATO provocation in Eastern Europe and foreign policy generally.

There is no mention of PR, and although this is not at the moment politically significant it does in my view need considering.

Overall JC’s policies are within a social democratic tradition and build on the limited start made in Labour’s manifesto, although without opposing austerity this inevitably did not attract the support that it might have done.

Let us hope that the huge support for and interest shown in JC’s proposals engenders a continuing and wider debate that lays the basis for a successful challenge to the Tories in 2020 or possibly before.

 

32 Comments

  1. peter is probably right that the policies are not particularly radical and the SDP may have been to the left of him, which is what we might expect in a generation of what Stuart Hall called the Great Moving Right Show. But policy is not the reason for the Corbyn surge, any more than it is the reason for the Sturgeon surge in Scotland or UKIP getting 3.8million votes under Farage.

    Like the rise of Thatcher to defeat the old patrician tory one nation tories who she purged from the tory leadership in the 1980s, its a phenomenon rising from the old leadership being out of touch with a new reality. IN this case, that Blairism was electorally viable in the 1990s but is no longer.

    Policy is always the touchstone for the Labour activist. Social movements don’t do policy. They give people a sense that their interests are being served, which Labour does not do and social democracy is not doing anywhere in Europe. THe world is changing and the policy comes out of being in touch with the social mood not vice versa.

    Whether Corbyn has any real shelf life remains to be seen. But he without changing any of his actual policies finds himself in tune with people who are not served by the political class in the Westminster bubble. Its not a move back to social democracy as much as the dispossessed recognizing that when Mandleson said “We are all thatcherites now”, he and his tendency had abandoned them for the aspirational middle classes – who are no longer served by Thatcherism either.

    Who can find a way to tackle the alienation of the majority will dominate for a generation. But there is no going back to keynsianism.

    Trevor Fisher.

    1. Peter Rowlands says:

      I did not say that policies were the main reason for the Corbyn surge, and Trevor is right about tapping into moods, but those are always linked to potential policy. Blairism is redundant as he says. No , I don’t think a reheated social democracy will provide the big answers, but it’s attracted a lot of attention whuich is a good start.

  2. David Pavett says:

    Peter’s analysis should help to bring policy debate re Corbyn down to earth. The force and extent of the anti-Corbyn vitriol has encouraged many on the left to embrace the idea that his policies are as radical as his detractors claim. They aren’t.

    As Peter says the important point should be that Corbyn will encourage informed democratic debate to be at the heart of policy formation. That’s not something the Labour Party has much experience of at any level. So bringing it about is a lot easier said than done. I think that the Party’s Policy Commisions and the National Policy Forum needed to be reformed so that genuinely exploratory debate, most of which must take place outside of and before meetings, becomes the norm. That’s a tall order for an organisation as intellectually slack as Labour. I suggest that two things could help make this a reality: (1) a monthly Party discussion journal; (2) A website organised for a meaningfull exchange of views i.e. not Membersnet or Your Britain.

  3. John P Reid says:

    So when we lose in 1020 by a mile it can be said we lost as it was left wing enough!

    1. David Pavett says:

      I think we may have missed the boat for the elections in 1020. Mind you, it might be argued that Canute’s division of England into four Earldom’s was an early exercise in devolving power – although not exactly to the people. I suspect he had Blairite leanings, he knew how to win power, was a Catholic convert and was never held back by mere matters of principle.

      1. Peter Rowlands says:

        In 1031 he went to Scotland and compelled Malcolm to do homage to him. Is Kezia Dugdale aware of this?

    2. John P Reid says:

      Obviously I meant 2020

  4. David Ellis says:

    Labour needs four or five core policies that will put working people in this country in power. Power over capital. And which can form the basis for the transition to socialism. These should be sacrosanct and changed only after intense democratic discussion. Any other day to day events and situations that require a political should be discussed and a position democratically arrived at on the basis of its world view dictated by its core manifesto.

    Here are some examples:

    1. There must be a regime of full-employment by which every school and college leaver and unemployed workers who cannot find their own job are bought into the local workforce to share in the available productive work with each paid the minimum of a trades union living wage. Capital must no longer be allowed to maintain a reserve army of unemployed in penury to be used against the employed.

    2, End the bank bail out. Let the bankrupts go bankrupt. Bring their staff, estates and deposits into administration to be used to form a new People’s Bank lending at base rate to small business and facilitating social investment in accordance with a democratic plan. This bank must have a monopoly of credit so that private financiers can never rip off and destroy the real economy again.

    3. The means of production and exchange need to be socialised and bought under the democratic control of the people. Fat cat executives imposed by absentee share holders, the Old School Tie Network and political patronage that treat UK plc like a personal trough must be replaced by worker-elected managers and leaders.

    4. The defence of all necessary and desirable public services paid for by a fair system of taxation and the establishment of working class defence forces that can protect meetings, demonstrations, picket lines, minority communities, etc from state and fascist attack.

    5. Replacement of the Westminster Union with a Federation of Sovereign Nations and Another Europe, based on solidarity and socialism, is possible.

    1. David Ellis says:

      That is a possible manifesto but what about perspectives. Any party claiming to represent the working class should be clear that capitalism is a mode of production that has run its course. No mode of production leaves the stage until all its potential is exhausted. We have reached that point. The 2008 crash showed it to be not just monopolised and sclerotic but also bankrupt. Globalisation under the cosh and urgings of the greatest world power history has ever known was the pinnacle of what capitalism could achieve. That achievement is now unravelling and unravelling at an alarming rate. The world economy is being liquidated in the name of a Bankers Versailles, nations are being ploughed under, centuries of accumulated wealth exchanged for worthless coin. It is now, as it was prophesised it would eventually have to be, a stark choice between socialism or barbarism. The violence of the unravelling of capitalist globalisation will make the violence of its achievement look like a vicar’s tea party. Only the international proletarian revolution can transcend capitalist globalisation and take humankind on to the next stage of its journey.

    2. David Pavett says:

      What is meant by “share in the available productive work”?
      Is there a fixed quantum off this stuff or are the limits to available productive work limits imposed by capital rather than by nature?

      1. David Ellis says:

        Well it certainly means no bogus and expensive job creation schemes or paying people to break rocks for no reason or hiding unemployment in nationalised industries. It means work that creates a surplus over and above what it costs to put to work. So for instance if it cost ten hours work to create the capacity for work and that work produced only 9 hours worth of product that would not be productive work.

        1. David Pavett says:

          But why do you think there is only a limited amount productive work available and what determines thise limits?

          1. David Ellis says:

            What determines the limits of what counts as productive work is as I described above. If the means of production are actually used up rather than replenished and added to by our labours then they are not productive labours. National service in the army for instance. But the main point of demanding the work be productive work is to emphasise that a regime of full employment is not an aspiration for full employment but will impose it and it will not be some bourgeois solution like work houses or job creations schemes. It will be via the sharing of proper work. I feel you are being mischievous rather than engaging.

    3. Mervyn Hyde says:

      David:

      As you no doubt understand money creation is being used to expand the economy but that money at present is issued as debt through the private banks.

      As MMT (modern monetary theory) explain there is absolutely no reason for a government to borrow it’s own money. In short we don’t actually need banks. All we need is a place you could call a bank where they usefully carry out our spending transactions and a place to store our savings.

      Other than that there is no valid reason for banks to exist.

      The government as the issuer of the currency can spend that money into the economy when and where it is needed not haphazardly and debt as it is today.

      So that said, we as people should prioritise our needs, look where there is need and solve those problems, if we just gave local government all the money it required we could pay people real wages to do real jobs and dramatically improve our lifestyles, when I think back before Thatcher started to dismantle public facilities such as youth clubs, closing down retirement homes, mental hospital, and more, it is not difficult to see where need is and all that is stopping it is money.

      Education is being dismantled, the reason being they don’t want better educated children because the economy in it’s present form can’t sustain full employment. The rest goes without saying, but in the sixties I well remember politicians talking about reducing class sizes for all, in my day we had on average 42 children to a class when Grammar schools had far fewer. we have the money to employ as many teachers as we need.

      The NHS is again being dismantled and replaced by an American system, Guess why this government use McKinsey advisors to help privatise the NHS? All this at a time when Americans themselves are realising just how bad their health system is. There is nothing we can’t achieve in the NHS, on personal note, before New Labour started the privatisation process, a German friend of mine who was a trained nurse, was offered six months work in the late sixties at a local hospital, and she told me that she had never seen the kind of equipment levels in Germany that we had in a small local hospital. I later lived in Bavaria where she worked in a private clinic, on one occasion, when in Germany at that time there were 2 million vacancies and Germany was booming, her clinic had run out of money and she did not know whether she was going to be paid at the end of the month, and even worse, they could not afford money for pharmaceuticals and had to supply chalk tablets to seriously ill patients.

      That is just a personal anecdote but true.

      There is nothing we can’t do; essentially we need to address areas of immediate need, job creation and that can be achieved very quickly, Infrastructure, important nationalisation, re-establishing local government and essentially getting private enterprise out of public services, The NHS locally we payed in the 2013-2014 over £4 Million to employ solicitors and admin personnel handle the contracting out (CSU).

      Getting rid of the private sector will not only make the NHS more efficient but cheaper, as if we did not know already.

      I could go on but I think you get the gist, there is nothing we can’t achieve if we use money, human and natural resources to their full potential.

      1. David Pavett says:

        You say that “we don’t actually need banks. All we need is a place you could call a bank where they usefully carry out our spending transactions and a place to store our savings. In fact, according to MMT, to which you refer, banks have a more significant role than this in creating the credit needed by the economy. MMT theorist Randall Wray says

        Banks are true “intermediaries”, making profits not out commodity production but rather by providing the liquid “money” needed for commodity production – creating IOUs to purchase the IOUs of others, and reaping profits from the interest rate differential.

        Wray doesn’t suggest for a moment that banks are not necessary to the functioning of commodity production.

        MMT does not claim that government’s can (sensibly) spend without limit. It recognises that in conditions of full employment government spending could be inflationary. So it is not true to say that “There is nothing we can’t do”. Wray argues that governments have to keep a close eye on the Debt to GDP ratio and the cost of debt servicing, just as do non-MMT economists.

        There is another problem. MMT is a narrow theory of government backed credit money operating in a closed economic system. What happens when you have free movement of capital as we do? That rather upsets the simple picture – as even Keynes understood long ago.

        Also, none of this has anything to do with my question about the so-called “amount of productive work” which allegedly needs to be shared out. So I am a bit puzzled by your reply. Did I miss something?

        1. Mervyn Hyde says:

          David:

          First you need to see theses two videos:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCOVldiGeQY

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1AyT9zftNrE

          The first relates to Stephanie Kellton and the second from Warren Mosler.

          First what MMT does; is explains how money enters the economy at the moment, what you say is not in dispute, but what I referred to was it does not have to be that way.

          We issue money into the economy as debt, what we need to do is to circumvent the private Banks and issue money directly into the treasurer from the Bank of England.

          We can of course do that to infinity, what the videos make clear is how we control inflation, that is done by taxation and interest rates.

          My point is that we simply can’t trust the Banks, Positive money wants to put in place a commission that issues government money to spent directly into the economy for public purpose. They also then would restrict private banks by disallowing them to issue money that they have not made though profits etc., in other words they could only use their own money, not as they do now print it out of thin air.

          I don’t feel personally we can even trust them not to print money, after all that is how paper money came into being, they found they could get away with printing money that was not actually representative of the value of gold the Banks held.

          My overall point about money being put into circulation directly by the government as opposed to the Banking system, which issues it as debt, (and a state Bank could also lend money but only that placed by savers and profits accrued from retail banking practices) meaning, not through the printing of money. But the government could actively stimulate economic activity by putting debt free money when and where it was needed. In other words free money for public expenditure.

          Inflation is and can still be controlled by taxation and interest rate policy. I also believe we should use taxation to limit wealth for as we see today with the feral elite they misuse their wealth and the power it gives them.

          1. David Pavett says:

            You say

            “They [the government] also then would restrict private banks by disallowing them to issue money that they have not made though profits etc., in other words they could only use their own money, not as they do now print it out of thin air.”

            As I understand it this is not the view of MMT theorists, certainly not of all of them. One of the problems of MMT is that its advocates tend to talk as if they had seen the economic light and have a simple technical solution to our economic problems understood in abstraction from the class nature of capitalist society. Political economy cannot be replaced by accountancy but many MMT advocates speak as if this were possible.

            And then, to repeat, I can’t see what any of this has to do with the points made by Peter Rowlands. And that is another thing about MMT: its advocates tend to make the same points whatever the discussion.

            To quote a rather brilliant 19th century economist “There is no royal road to science, and only those who do not dread the fatiguing climb of its steep paths have a chance of gaining its luminous summits.”

            Economic understanding cannot be reduced to the simplicities of MMT.

          2. Mervyn Hyde says:

            Sorry David: I did not make myself clear, I am not making recommendations from MMT’s point of view as I thought you knew, that MMT itself only explains the way that the Financial system works now.

            My view which you take issue with is trying to explain that whilst you, and in that not on your own, seem to want to tinker with the system as though you set up a general formula for solving our economic problems.

            When from my point of view there is no need to worry what kind of jobs would be created, how they would materialise etc., when all government needs to worry about is the expressed need that arises.

            There are at present more needs to cater for than I believe people to do them and so needs need to be prioritised.

            The reason I continue to emphasise Money is that it is readily available and the current methods of introducing it into the economy is inefficient, haphazard and only serves the interests of the private banks, and fundamentally obviates them.

            As an example of the current situation with regard to the NHS. We are told we can’t afford it, but in reality we can, the reason we don’t is because the government borrows it’s own money, through a financial system that profits from it, (free Money) whilst throwing people on to the scrap heap because the private sector has no purpose for them.

            Please don’t get pedantic on me about the term free money, I know the private banks create bonds and exchange a piece of paper in theory for lots of other pieces of paper, but they still get free money and as MMT explain it is just a matter of recording numbers in accounts.

            So to make it crystal clear what I am saying, is that You complicate what is in fact a very simple situation.

            We are told that there is no money, that the country is broke. That is not true.

            Our country has had it’s real manufacturing base exported abroad, we need jobs, there are jobs that need doing but that means someone must provide the money to create them.

            Thatcher promised through her Neo-Liberal dream of shrinking the state that entrepreneurs would flood the country and create a dynamic economy. (Friedman)

            We know where that ended up, and the real agenda had nothing to do with a dynamic economy as we see with legislation today such as TTIP.

            So what can we do? We use our own money to create jobs and public provision, instead of waiting for some philanthropic billionaire to drop out of the sky, who suddenly thinks he can make even more money out of us, and makes it worthwhile for him to invest.

            Jeremey has tried to outline the areas which would bring benefit to society as a whole, if we just think we can carry on as we are, or just tinker away at the system which I fear people like yourself believe, then I think we will fail.

            There are absolutely no limits as to what we can achieve as a society, all it takes is a little imagination.

            We need to put more research into drugs and instead of relying on cancer charities in adhoc fashion we can understand why it is so difficult to find a cure etc.

            There is so much to do and money is being used to ration our ambitions rather opening up the frontiers of the possible.

            We have the money, so what do you think we should do with it?

    4. David Pavett says:

      “What determines the limits of what counts as productive work is as I described above.”

      But I didn’t ask the limits of what counts as productive work. That is a definitional matter, I asked you what makes you think that the quantity of productive work is a fixed amount the needs to be shared out. That is an empirical matter.

      1. David Ellis says:

        David you are getting hung up on this. The available productive work simply means that the regime of full employment is neither an aspiration to be vaguely achieved via monetary policy at some unspecified point in the future nor is it a job creation scheme or a workhouse scheme whereby people break rocks nor is it a scheme for hiding unemployment in state owned backwaters. What constitutes productive work in the future is to be determined. It certainly won’t include a lot of the things we do today and which people make a profit out of. Once we have consolidated the means of production under social ownership and workers’ control we will have a platform for a whole new direction.

        1. David Pavett says:

          No, I am not at all “hung up”. I am simply asking a simple question: what is meant by speaking of a ” share in the available productive work”? I can’t see that I have had an answer in any way. There is constant confusion in the answers between the definition of productive work and the idea that there is only a certain quantum of it. I won’t ask again.

          1. J.P. Craig-Weston says:

            And this is the kind of academic hair splitting, (or hair brained,) pedantry which is presumably, what you meant by above, by the kind of “informed democratic debate,” that should be at the heart of policy formation?”

            I’m losing the will to live.

          2. David Ellis says:

            You do have an answer but you refuse to accept it.

            The already available productive work needs to be shared out as opposed to expensive job creation schemes or work camps or national service or hiding unemployment in nationalised industries. There is no idea that there is only a certain quantum of it. The point is that we are proposing a regime of full-employment not a bogus desire for full employment or the kind of full employment envisaged by the bourgeoisie involving war and concentration camps. Once the already available productive work is shared out that does not mean the end of the creation of productive work. In fact with everybody working say 20 hours a week with each on the miminuym of a trades union living wage there will no longer be a need for an army of police, social workers and child carers of people looking after abandoned old and sick folk and those people currently wasting billions of hours of productive capacity on remedial shit can be put to actual productive work. Sharing the available productive work far from limiting it will create a platform for the unleashing a huge new capacity for productive work.

  5. Bazza says:

    Great news (Sat 12/9) Jeremy Corbyn elected Leader (59.5%)Burnham 19% Cooper 17% Kendal 4.7%.
    Now the work of the grassroots of Labour begins – from our life experience and reading plus research etc. we need to build policies of mass appeal.
    Of course the Tories and their echo chamber of the Right Wing media will vilify Jeremy, will distort, exaggerate, mis-report etc. so get ready for the Right Wing onslaught but we just need to explain to the public that this is coming and that they do it to try to KEEP POWER WITH THE RICH AND POWERFUL!
    Hedge Funds giving £50m to Tories and getting £145m of tax cuts!
    And we can get on with trying to buiild a wonderful society where people care about each other more and we help each other out, plus where we try to eliminate poverty and inequality and to eradicate racism, homophobia, disabity hate crimes, sexism etc.
    Where we try to HAVE MORE DEMOCRACY to empower citizens with people having a greater say in all areas of life.
    Where we try have well paid and interesting jobs for all (if people have to do repetive work i.e. work in a factory then why don’t we allow them to work shorter working weeks then the rest of us with good pay and managers should be tasked with offering variety in work to make it more interesting for those who wish this).
    We need also to harness the light heat of new technolgy to serve us all as citizens to make life better and not purely for the self-interests of big business.
    We also need dynamic business which harnesses enterprise skills in their fullest sense (and not rhe narrow right wing interpretation) which gives workers a say (and encourages trade unionism) plus where staff are encouraged to think critically and organisations draw on research and evidence and within a dynamic progressive society which also nurtures human creativity.
    We should also develop an education system which does not set people against each other but nurtures skills, caring, and critical thinking.
    We should also look at shorter working weeks and earlier retirement to free time poor working humanity so people can have more time to enjoy life and our beautiful planet.
    So let the Right pour their poison as we (working with partners globally) try to build a Wonderful World.
    Yours in slolidarity!

    1. Jim says:

      Errm, you need to win an election first, don’t get carried away

      1. Bazza says:

        Mine are only ideas to try to help us win and with the up and coming relentless Tory attacks we will need more ideas from below!

        1. Mervyn Hyde says:

          Exactly that Bazza, the problem is we have all been conditioned to accept limits that serve the feral elite’s view of the world, rather than the interests of society as a whole.

          Please don’t stop, the more people hear the more they will understand.

  6. Patrick says:

    One 3 pounder joined this morning £43 in the kitty

  7. David Pavett says:

    @Mervyn (September 14, 2015 at 11:41 am)

    “you … seem to want to tinker with the system as though you set up a general formula for solving our economic problems.”

    Nothing I said would bear this out.

    “…there is no need to worry what kind of jobs would be created, how they would materialise etc”.

    I can’t agree with that and neither does Jeremy Corbyn who wants specific types of jobs in specific places.

    “Please don’t get pedantic on me about the term free money …”

    I didn’t use the expression once. The words are yours.

    “We are told that there is no money, that the country is broke. That is not true.

    Our country has had it’s real manufacturing base exported abroad, we need jobs, there are jobs that need doing but that means someone must provide the money to create them.”

    I agree with all that.

    “So what can we do? We use our own money to create jobs and public provision …”

    I agree up to a point. But there are limits as MMT theorists acknowledge. More money pumped into an economy working at capacity will on virtually everyone’s analysis, produce inflation. And there are problems even before you get to that point as I have already suggested but they are to do with political economy and not just accountancy.

    “There are absolutely no limits as to what we can achieve as a society, all it takes is a little imagination.”

    That reminds me of a slogan of the 68ers “All power to the imagination!” to which the dry response was “A slogan of those who can only take power in their imagination”. The claim is absurd.

    “We have the money, so what do you think we should do with it?”

    I think that we need a proper theory of money and on my reading so far I don’t think MMT provides it.

    1. Mervyn Hyde says:

      “I agree up to a point. But there are limits as MMT theorists acknowledge. More money pumped into an economy working at capacity will on virtually everyone’s analysis, produce inflation. And there are problems even before you get to that point as I have already suggested but they are to do with political economy and not just accountancy.

      “There are absolutely no limits as to what we can achieve as a society, all it takes is a little imagination.”

      That reminds me of a slogan of the 68ers “All power to the imagination!” to which the dry response was “A slogan of those who can only take power in their imagination”. The claim is absurd.

      “We have the money, so what do you think we should do with it?”

      I think that we need a proper theory of money and on my reading so far I don’t think MMT provides it.”

      David:

      We are at an impasse where it is all a matter of opinion, but in reality you try to discredit MMT and don’t even have an alternative perspective, I call that a lack of imagination.

      This is in fact what Warren Mosler says about that, if you listen very carefully he says that as we are today, and the same has been said of Osborne, that we are still at the bottom of a depression and yet he persists with deflationary policies. Why?

      http://youtube-downloader-mp3.com/watch-warren-mosler-says-peter-schiff-and-his-sheeple-are-victims-of-their-own-propaganda-id-IUuCGNFqVJY.html

      The answer to why is of course the Neo-Liberal asset stripping agenda, there can be no other reason.

      The other difference between myself and you is that I have also another perspective, I regularly attend positive money groups, they have their differences between them, but from my point of view they are so close together on the general principles that it is insignificant.

      Japan as Warren Mosler says has been trying to expand their economy using the private banking system now for years, and as a matter of fact are using an infinite amount of QE to do it.

      Iceland’s government has just published a paper on how they can introduce quantitative easing to pay for all their public expenditure.

      I say finally that history provides the evidence that this is nothing new, It happened twice in America, where they set up their own currency once prior to the Boston Tea Party and the second by Abraham Lincoln during the American Civil War. Their economies boomed and worked for them, we could use our currency to benefit us and not the bankers, and that is the point, but unless you grasp that you can’t produce a single nut and bolt that will serve any useful purpose, other than being dictated to by banks.

  8. […] it appears that Jeremy Corbyn and his front bench plan to galvanize the power of this membership to bring democracy into policy making. In short, it looks like Labour members will be supporting policy development in a way unheard of […]

  9. Bazza says:

    See some who backed other candidates in Labour have started not picking already.
    I am sure if a Blairite had won there would have been a Blairite Shadow Chancellor and they need to remember that Jetemy has a massive mandate from grassssroots members.
    There will also be a pretty diverse group around the shadow cabinet table – all with an equal say and note 16 women and 15 men.

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