Indebted To Lies Plutocracy Is

A vast scandal is unfolding in economics. Its repercussions are horrendous: in conjunction with what i already denounced in “Indebted To Lies” (February 12, 2013), all you read about debt is false. As Paul Krugman puts it cogently in “The Excel Depression“: Did an Excel coding error destroy the economies of the Western world?”

Krugman is way too nice. There was not just a coding “error”. The deliberate malfeasance I expose below is no error.

(Notice that Krugman seems to be oozing towards admitting that we have (an excel…lent?) depression not just a lesser one; soon he will have to call the unfolding disaster a Greater Depression, just as I do!)

Harvard: We Lie, Therefore We Thrive

Harvard: We Lie, Therefore We Thrive

Notice the understatement of the Wall Street Journal (“are not as clearly linked“), in their own caption above: there is little relation between growth and debt load. And this, even in the malevolently selected countries of the extremely influential R-R paper (to be trashed below).

Also notice the biased title of the WSJ, which contradicts the essence of what follows it: the WSJ staff knows readers have little time, and, at a glance, will extract from the graph (that they will most probably not carefully examine), that “debt is a burden“. Whereas the graph says the exact opposite: debt is little burden. But the WSJ staff knows what their masters want them to say: in with the austerity, out with the economy, and the People it supports. The WSj staff has to eat and pay rent. Of these little manipulations, little minds are made.

***

HARVARD CROOKS LONG GUIDED THE WORLD INTO THE ABYSS:

To destroy plutocracy, one needs to destroy first the Evil League that provides it with respectability.

A famously very connected Harvard graduate and plutocrat, Ernst Sedgwick Hanfstaengl, was one of the early supporters of Hitler. His grandfather had carried Lincoln’s coffin. The Sedgwick family is part of plutocratic central in the USA. To this day (naturally in various forms of acting).

A composer and pianist, “PutziSedgwick-Hanfstaengl wrote the songs the Nazis used, modifying his own Harvard songs. The scared and wounded Nazi leader took refuge at the home of this very wealthy American, after the failed putsch of Fall 1923. Hitler was in love with Hanfstaengl’s American wife. She prevented Hitler’s suicide, when Bavarian police came to arrest the Nazi “Guide“.

Hanfstaengl was connected by friendship to the Roosevelts, and many other influential plutocrats, themselves connected to everybody who mattered in the USA. Top Nazis came to believe, correctly, that the plutocratically controlled USA would never attack them (and so the Nazis had to declare war to the USA themselves when they found in Moscow that they would lose the war, anyway! When you have got to go, you may as well do so in a blaze of glory!)

This Harvard connection explains why the USA considered the French republic, rather than the Nazi dictatorship, its enemy after 1933. The result was World War Two, Auschwitz, Yalta, the pact with the Wahhabists, etc. As many gifts to those worthies supporting Harvard. Evil: the gift that keeps on giving to plutocrats.

Is the Ivy League resembling the Evil League, more than anything else?

***

HARVARD CROOKS STILL GUIDE THE WORLD TO OBLIVION:

I have long insisted that “plutocratic universities” are propaganda outfits for their masters. Harvard University is blatant that way, a cesspool of theoretical justifications for civilizational abuse. For all to see: one of its professors came with the ridiculous “Clash of Civilizations“, an astoundingly uninformed, but highly influential work, a sort of modern justification for “Mein Kampf“. It goes a long way to explain the support of American “neoconservatives” for Fundamentalist Wahhabism.

Larry Summers (Harvard’s president), insisted, as Clinton’s Treasury Sec., that the most valuable investment known to man would be the financial derivative. And the full power of the state was harnessed to make it so. Ever since the economy has become derivative, indeed (size real world economy: 50 trillions, not even a tenth of financial derivatives alone, 80% of it through fiscal havens).

Thanks to the Clintonians (or should I call them Goldmanians?), financiers have been taxed a maximum of 15% ever since.

I am happy to report another deleterious piece of mass mind control from Harvard, with huge consequences. In 2010, Harvard economists Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff (R-R) released a paper, “Growth in a Time of Debt.” Their “main result is that… for countries with public debt over 90 percent of GDP … average (mean) growth rates are several percent lower.” The Harvard guys professed that countries with debt-to-GDP ratios above 90 percent have a slightly negative average growth rate.

The work of the Harvard worthies was used, worldwide, as the main argument to engage austerity programs all over. Just when People had to be put to work, they were told they were furloughed. Never minds if people died from all the austerity (say by arriving at hospitals that had stopped providing care, from lack of funds, as happened in Portugal).

Never mind that the austerity was not applied to the hyper rich and banksters (now both richer than ever).

What else? The Harvard economists cheated. And it was deliberate, because they did so several times, and in different ways.

Indeed, it’s hard to believe that their programming “mistake” was really a mistake, because, independently of that, they also massaged the data in what is obvious academic malfeasance (for example equating 19 years of solid British growth, in spite of debt above 90%, with one year of New Zealand growth, and similar biased monstrosities).

Another tactic: they deliberately misinterpreted facts (when GIs were demobilized, an economic disruption due to this was misinterpreted, by the Harvard profs, as a problem caused by debt; showing they are ignorant, or vicious, or both). 

Second problem? It should have been obvious that the Harvard professors’ work was completely wrong (Paul Krugman wants to “Blame the Pundits Too“; I concur).

***

PHILOSOPHICAL METHOD SAYS: OBVIOUSLY WRONG IN ONE CASE IS ENOUGH

To prove a theory is wrong, it’s enough to have ONE spectacular counter-example. Obviously a lot of economies grew tremendously in spite of high debt loads in the past. It happened to the USA after World War Two. Same for most European economies.

This happened in particular during the “thirty glorious years” of unabated economic expansion. Then the ruling theory, all over the West, was that growth in infrastructure, knowledge (CERN, going to the Moon, etc.), social progress (retirement, mandatory vacations), education (GI Bill, free education, all the way to universities, even in California) had primacy over all other economic aims. Inflation and debt were put in the service of these goals.

Thus it was clear that the RR fact finding was actually fact denying.

A further step in proving an old system of thought is wrong is when a simpler, more plausible theory offers itself. It does not matter the details are not in. Not only do we have counter-examples to the debt-is-bad theory, but it’s easy to build a theory of why and when debt is good.

Debt, per se, is not a problem. As long as one can reimburse it. Thus the problem is what the debt is used for. Any debt that comes due, after a very profitable investment it enabled, allows to reimburse it, is obviously an economic positive.

So why the debt phobia? Why is Obama using debt phobia to throw Social Security below the exponential train?

Right now the debt phobia is just a Trojan Horse to divert the debate way from what the plutocrats do not want to talk about. Rising the taxes on those who have most of the money and power.

***

STOP FINANCING THE RICH, INVEST IN A SUSTAINABLE ECONOMY FOR THE PEOPLE:

As debt became enormous in World War II, taxes on the wealthy, in the USA, were brought up to 94%. Truman lowered them down a bit, but then president Eisenhower, a republican, brought the top tax margin rate back up to 92.5%. Ike explained he did this to reimburse the debt. Meanwhile Ike launched and financed the Interstate Freeway System. The idea: to build all over the USA a system of autobahn (just like in Germany), free to the public, would improve the economy. That was proved correct a hundred times over.

Raising the tax on the most wealthy to 92.5% would have done wonder. Obama could have financed the construction of highly profitable 250 mph (400 km/h) high speed trains in several place where it would have been profitable to do so (for example the North East and California). Or simply to build power lines out of a few places where cheap sustainable is produced or producible. (In Spring, the North West USA produces potentially more electricity from hydro that it can use and export.)

The case of Europe is similar. Taxes there are higher than in the USA, but the land is poorer and smaller (the population density is  about four times that of the USA, with fewer resources). Thus public spending in Europe ought to be even higher. For example in the matter of energy. The switch to sustainable energy, as it is done today, is proving too costly under existing technology (this is very clear in Britain, where energy costs have doubled since 2006, and in Germany where they threaten to do the same soon).

So considerably more research on new energy should be made by Europe. Instead research and education budgets are coming short of what’s needed.

***

GREAT DEPRESSION? PLEASE DEFAULT OUT OF THE OLD STUFF, & BORROW FOR THE FUTURE:

European “conservative” leaders will whine they don’t have the money to sustain their socio-economy. Of course, those neofascists and their plutocratic employers have the money, for themselves. And as far as the states are concerned, to get money, it could not be simpler: borrow. Interest rates are at record lows.

Borrow until what? Until so much economic activity explodes that money is very much in demand, and interest rates perk up. The interest rates will follow the economy. It’s mechanical.

The Netherlands just recognized this, three days ago. Not a coincidence that the great debt paper of the Harvard crooks had just crashed and burned. The Netherlands changed policy on austerity, this week, breaking spectacularly with Germany.

The Low Countries decided to forgo the austerity drive. The center-right government decided to deliberately AUGMENT its deficit by 10%, above what the EMU bylaws require. Instead of bringing their deficit below 3% of GDP (as mandated by European Monetary Union rules), they will keep it at 3.3% by refusing to make some cuts.

On April 5, Portugal’s Constitutional Court said that plans to trim public employee wages and retiree pensions—while not touching the income of other groups—violated the constitutional principle of equality. It also overturned a planned tax on unemployment benefits.

Do you really want to make Europe richer, you the “conservatives” admirers of Wall Street, infeodated to international plutocracy? Crack down on the wealthy. Not just wealthy individuals, but wealthy corporations. In particular, Europe should stop financing the corporations of the USA, the core of the plutocratic system. I am not just talking about having them pay tax (this they don’t do, allowing them to kill and devour small businesses, throughout the West… Although the BRICS do not allow them to play this game!).

On the his last day as president, Hoover signed the “Buy American Act of 1933“. That said that the government of the USA would buy only American. In the service of free trade, it was mandatory that the European governments will keep on buying American. All is fair in exploitation and spoliation. (In case the Europeans could still sell something to the USA, president Reagan (Ray-Gun?) had a reinforcement passed in 1983, the imaginatively, and revealingly named “Buy America Act“.)

That “Buy American Act” outrage to free trade was instituted 80 years ago. Meanwhile American plutocracy has kept on preaching the opposite. The European leaders do not seem to have noticed. Why? Are they paid not to notice, just like Harvard economists Carmen were paid, to bear power into the further destruction of the democracies? Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff were paid, through monies, career, honors, and reputation to claim that one cures depression by starving the economy of money.

Same for their European colleagues: paid through monies, career, honors, and reputation to claim that one cures depression by starving the economy of money, and… not to notice the “Buy America(n)” Acts.

***

Patrice Ayme

***

Notes: The University of Massachusetts found a more honest version of the Rogoff-Reinhart’s paper would revise the average growth estimate for the highest-debt countries to 2.2%—or a percentage point lower than for countries with a debt-to-GDP ratio of between 60% and 90%.

The head of the German Central Bank used the Rogoff-Reinhart’s claim that countries with more than 90% debt/GDP had negative growth, this pack of lies, as recently as February 2013, to justify curing depression with the hunger strike of austerity.

P/S: A faithful commenter on this site, Dominique Deux, reminded me of  “the “internal error” at the IMF which completely underestimated the negative effects of austerity measures. The IMF has recognized the mistake but its recommendations, and more importantly the policies they supposedly inspire, never wavered. I safely predict this new instance of cooked up “data” will have the same lack of consequences. Dogma trumps reality.”

It’s not just dogma, it’s first impression authored with great authority that imprints the weak minded. weak minded by purpose, of course.

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50 Responses to “Indebted To Lies Plutocracy Is”

  1. Dominique Deux Says:

    May I suggest this new exposure of deliberate (*) fraud be treated in conjunction with the “internal error” at the IMF which completely underestimated the negative effects of austerity measures. The IMF has recognized the mistake but its recommendations, and more importantly the policies they supposedly inspire, never wavered. I safely predict this new instance of cooked up “data” will have the same lack of consequences. Dogma trumps reality.

    So there is a need for keeping such examples, and more like them which I am sure are out there for the unearthing, available for easy and complete reference. There also is a need to go beyond well informed, articulate forums, and start presenting the information to honest media and decision-makers – they’re not in such huge numbers.

    The Emperor is bare ass nekkid, but somehow the masses will start seeing it only when his dangling privates have been spray-painted as red as his buffoon nose.

    (*) when working with a spreadsheet on important data, there are means of checking for omissions or wrong formulas. One being checksum cells computed from different paths, which should show the same amount. Guess they don’t teach that at Hhharva’hd.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Excellent observation, Dominique! I had forgotten the IMF “error”! I will add it to my essay, ASAP!
      As casual philosophical inspection (as I tried to explain) shows that growth and massive debt are compatible, it’s obvious that the IMF “error” was not an “error”, either.

      In the 1960s, the connection between growth, inflation and extinguishing the debt through profitability was the official (albeit unsaid) doctrine. Everybody could see that is what was going on.
      PA

  2. golomaximus Says:

    Harvard is already crimson in the face. Truth is, it only cares about power. And never had more!

  3. Patrice Ayme Says:

    Dominique: How do we avoid guiding frauds to leave only the imprint they left when first out? How do we avoid frauds to be exposed as violently as they deserve, in the fullness of time?

    Insults.

    Fact is Harvard is not a great this, great that. It’s a private company hooked up to plutocracy, worldwide. To my knowledge the Harvard professors who wrote propaganda for Qaddafi and his sons (some PhDs were given!) were not punished. Just an example.

    Thus Harvard, just like the Sicilian Mafia, is showing itself to be a criminal enterprise. Just like Martin Heidegger was recognized to be a criminal during de-Nazification, a need exists to extend similar spite to the deleteriously unworthy.

    Insults to respond to their self-glorification.

    Mass criminality always comes from mass mind control. Harvard played its role, enormously, behind Hitler, and stayed beyond any suspicion. Pseudo-intellectuals such as Elie Wiesel, thoroughly sold to the powers that be, go around, saying they don’t understand Auschwitz.

    Of course, he was inside Auschwitz. To understand Auschwitz, going to Jerusalem is the wrong way. The right way, is to go to Harvard. There the enabling evil is to be found.
    PA

  4. pshakkottai Says:

    Hi Patrice:
    The difference between money creators and money users is important. The ratio of debt to GDP means nothing to monetarily sovereign currency issuers.
    California is a state and can’t create money. It can’t easily afford the bullet train. USA can create any amount of money and deficits are created money. The bullet train is a worthwhile project for USA and CA. Why can’t Governor Brown make a case for it? All states should make similar cases for infrastructure. The limit for federal spending is when there is no more idle capacity and idle workers.

    I repeat a blog of mine here. USA balance is:

    (B.).. (spending – tax) = deficit = (private sector savings + net imports),

    applies to monetarily sovereign USA. Federal taxes are ENTIRELY UNNECESSARY.

    DEFICIT should be INCREASED a lot to exceed at least 1/2 trillion dollars, the money removed from US economy by imports. The DEFICIT will fund all infrastructure, supply money to the states generously, fund all university education, offer free medicare for all, fund SS with elimination of FICA ,a regressive tax. In addition lower taxes for everybody including corporations. USA is very wealthy. 300 million people own 70 trillion dollars or 200,000 per capita! A million for a family of four, of course, not well distributed. The meanness of taxation is unjustified.

    Taxation will simply remove money from the economy. I am for ZERO federal taxes (first cut, because this may not be enough to produce a more equal society.)

    Debt reduction is another name for national wealth reduction! Shown in numbers in

    http://pshakkottai.wordpress.com/2012/07/31/cumulative-deficit-vs-household-net-worth/

    State and business and household finance (users of money not creators) is

    (A)… (income + net exports = expense + savings =expense – debt), which means states have to spend what they get in taxes and exports and this balance DOES NOT APPLY TO USA. IT IS THE GREAT TAXPAYER MYTH.

    On steps to decrease income inequality please see

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/pshakkottai/obama-budget-proposal-cut_n_3029598_243131645.html

    Here is an interesting piece of news from:

    http://www.defence.pk/forums/economy-development/1418-indian-economy-news-updates-archive-153.html#ixzz2Qt30kuFG

    Although India’s average income is only about one tenth Australia’s, its rapidly growing cities are pouring money into new rail networks.

    Delhi had no metropolitan rail system before part of its new Metro was opened in 2002. Now, authorities expect that, by 2020, it will be bigger than London’s underground.

    The rail system has changed the lives of commuters such as Vimal Chandra, a 55-year-old public servant. Mr Chandra used to spend 2½ hours on crowded buses getting to work. That has been cut to just over an hour.

    At least nine Indian cities are building or planning rail metros including the booming IT centres of Bengaluru (formerly Bangalore) and Hyderabad.

    “The answer for both Australian cities and Indian cities is to invest in mass transit systems.”

    And there are striking differences between Delhi’s Metro and the fashions shaping the development of public transport in Australia. The Delhi Metro is not privately owned and funded like many public transport projects proposed in Australia. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, the company building and operating the system, is a joint-venture by the Indian Government and the Delhi State Government.

    Unlike Australia’s Federal Government, which has left urban transport to the states, India’s national Government has taken a big role in Delhi’s rail project.

    I suspect India is aware of monetary sovereignty also called Modern Monetary Theory.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Wow Partha, lots to think about here! I agree with what seems to me to be your general drift, though, that the government can pretty much decide to do whatever needs to be done. that’s what sovereignty means, and how BRICS function…
      Even very corrupt ones like Brazil…

      Now, of course, plutocrats need to be protected from workers, so that’s the reason of the weird, self defeating organization of the West. Paradoxically, in BRICS, plutocrats are not afraid of workers…

      Anyway got to go here, I will come back on your ideas and links… Although I am involved in cross planet travel in next few days…
      PA

  5. old geezer pilot Says:

    Why the USA, with zero borrowing cost, has NOT massively invested in 21st century moon-shot projects is of course shameful. However, these potential ideas must make economic sense, or they are merely make work projects (like Stevens’s bridge to nowhere).. China is facing that dilemma right now. After the Lehman crash, China embarked on a massive campaign to sustain the (unsustainable) 10% growth rate. And they built many empty housing estates and airports, as well as high speed trains to nowhere. All financed by debt.

    All these ratios that economists use mean much less than whether the economic payback of a proposed project is worth the borrowed money to make is. We all know the interstate highway system has paid for itself many times over. We also know the basis for such payment was the growth of the suburbs, car manufacturers, shopping mall builders, etc etc.

    In a world in which growth will be slow or zero, does that strategy still work?

    In fact, can finance capitalism, which requires X% a year compound interest on a growing pool of wealth sustain itself without consuming all the world’s wealth for itself?

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear OGP:
      I was writing a short essay on this actually, before i saw your comment. China is a complex situation. In theory, it’s simple: communist dictatorship, etc. the reality is completely different. There are provincial and city governments, with basically their own banks. No doubt, there were imprudent, or unlucky loans. But no problem; they are to the real economy.

      If giant real estate projects of luxury, earthquake proof appartments go bankrupt, somebody, ultimately, hordes of some bodies, will profit from them (this is happening now, but the real estate billionaires are still OK, don’t worry).

      The very high speed line between Beijing and Ghanzou will not doubt be profitable. Offered the choice between plane and very high speed train from Marseilles to London, and back, next week, I chose the train. Price is the same, but experience shows that the train is much nicer, more conducive to work, less stressful, less demeaning, healthier (can walk, better food) etc. Not to speak of WiFi.

      Growth is zero, because that’s what plutocrats want. Huge projects are possible. Automatic cars, Thorium, Mars, sustainable energy projects and research, back to the 1950s, free education, free health care, massive biomedical research (presently being cut), Quantum Computer, etc. Some of these are finaced, of course, but very small scale. For example one step to orbit breathable sramjets (ESA), fusion drive (NASA) are financed, but massive financing should be engaged.

      You are quite a bit like Krugman, or Dominique, or Paul Handover, or Obama (no offense meant at all!): you believe in the goodness out there, and feel the meanness is just a misunderstanding. It’s not. it’s a strategy.
      PA

    • pshakkottai Says:

      @ old geezer pilot: “In fact, can finance capitalism, which requires X% a year compound interest on a growing pool of wealth sustain itself without consuming all the world’s wealth for itself?”

      For a monetarily sovereign country which has its own currency, deficits are another name for created money. And taxation would be unnecessary.

      If all banks are owned by the govt, any interest rate would work because the interest goes back into the economy. There would be no need to borrow from another agency and money creation would be by a national bank run by civil servants. And the spending would stop at full employment and no more slack in the economy.

      Capitalism would still be capitalism and would work fine because of the number of entities engaging in capitalism.

      It is a numbers game.

      Free enterprise works when there are a large number of competing entities.
      500 businesses… good
      50 businesses … so so
      5 mega corporations… on the way to monopoly and corruption

      The same for govt
      No parties… good
      At least 5 parties…. reasonable democracy with no winner take all (i.e proportional representation)
      Only 2 parties… becomes a duopoly and corrupt
      1 party… dictatorship (usually bad, because absolute power corrupts absolutely)”

      • Patrice Ayme Says:

        Dear Partha: agreed. Today’s economists are a funny lot: they don’t know much. It should be required reading in economics to study what happened under Darius in Persia.
        Darius, after a multidinous civil war from all quarters of the empire, found the latter economically devastated. So he applied modern principles of money creation. What they call now MMT (“modern Monetary Theory”). if i had an American sense of humor, I would say that darius revealed himself to be a savage, because he applied MMT without having learned it at Chicago.

        Anyway, Darius augmented maximally the velocity of money, while applying what stupid ignorant Anglo-Saxon economists call “Keynesiasnism”. Keynes’ father was born 24 centuries later… So Darius made a massive infrastructure program, including a road network, including the famous “Royal Road”. One was talking here about dimensions as large as the present USA. Yes, there was a Persian “Pony express”. News got to Susa or Persepolis in a week, even from as far as the empire extended.

        Then it was decided to use the field army to conquer Scythia (north of the Black Sea). So darius went on an austerity program: high taxes, savings… Why?

        Because the economy, the activity, had to switch to the military, thus starve the civil economy. Young men, instead of esteeming peaceful creativity, had to switch to war hormones. In any case, Darius’ Persia is an interesting case of the same team brutally going from one extreme to the other.
        PA

  6. Dominique Deux Says:

    “you believe in the goodness out there, and feel the meanness is just a misunderstanding.”

    I wonder what led you to this conclusion regarding my own views. I do believe there is some goodness somewhere, but I can perfectly see it has been overpowered worldwide by domination strategies. In a Hollywood epic this would be the second movie of the saga, with the good guys going underground and getting ready for the third movie with its blaring-trumpets ending, but this is for real and the enemy not only exists, but is quite proficient at gaining ever more ground.

    Which is why I can’t make sense of your advice to address such events as the RL or IMF bloopers with “insults”. That plays very nicely into the hands of a well-organized adversary which has gained, though its astute lies, the high academic and common-sense ground, and carefully portrays any dissent as the irrelevant ranting of mentally challenged loners. The “debate” is heavily skewed, with lies, censorship and browbeating used with gay abandon – but staying out of it on account of its unfairness is admitting and fostering defeat. Accumulating, honing and ceaselessly using factual arguments – which this forum contributes to, but in a rather confidential setting – is the only hope. Hurling insults is not.

    • Dominique Deux Says:

      … and I would add that the really relevant information in your Krugman link is the comments section, which shows that common sense is not exactly scarce. Only those who like being browbeaten gladly suffer to be. All the more reason to store and use relevant ammunition.

      http://www.philolog.fr/le-bon-sens-est-la-chose-du-monde-la-mieux-partagee-descartes/

      Problem, as I noted, is that (chance) admissions of huge (engineered) bloopers with heavy consequences are systematically buried and forgotten.

      A third examples comes to mind: some time ago an EU staff member (if memory serves) confessed that the ironclad 3% deficit limit, now being used as a battle axe by Merkel et al, was worked out on the back of an envelope to bring an obscure meeting to a conclusion. It had no factual grounds whatsoever.

      I am not a reference collector and I do not suggest you become one, but somebody needs to do the job, as the smokescreen machine never ceases its work on the opposing side – part of the strategy you said I ignored..

      • Dominique Deux Says:

        How the RR study came to prosper and who its fairy godmother is:

        http://prwatch.org/news/2013/04/12065/pete-peterson-linked-economists-caught-austerity-error

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Thanks Dominique for that new plutocratic connection! It was clear that, being at Harvard, R-R were plutocratically connected. But a direct connection with Pete Peterson is even better!

          Those “research” institutes in the USA, are not just plutocratic propaganda outlets, they also allow to pay, under the table, but in full view, the (pseudo-) intellectuals billionaires want to finance and reward. Susan Rice was thus rewarded (and now she can pushe for the XL pipe, the extra-large pipe). Geithner went through a number of them.
          PA

      • Patrice Ayme Says:

        Dominique: I did not express myself very well. The Ayn Rand-“Job Creator” mythology has been widely accepted. That’s all what quantitative easing is, for example (send money to Goldman Sachs, and G-S will employ you, or your sister).
        I suggest that the people in the system are much more malevolent than people suspect. Malevolence has to be redefined. All over.

        Krugman, or Obama will tell you that they suggest such and such, because those are the only games in town. I suggest, instead that the truth is the only game in town. So tell the truth, and compromise, if you have to, explaining why. This was the story of the early weeks of the Obama presidency. Obama came with the right positions, but then compromised behind close doors, instead of making the debates public (about banks, afghanistan, etc.) Why did this happen?

        Because, all over and everywhere, Obama got surrounded by beautiful creatures of the system.

        On guns, Obama followed that tactic. He lost, because, by now, nobody respects him, among the powers that be (Johnson got respect, because he was so mean and Mafia-like connected; so he was able to pass all the civil right stuff… while going nuts in Vietnam!).
        PA

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      OK, Dominique, I may have been a bit carried to include you in the group of those who desperately cling to the goodness. I agree my choice of words was not great (I’m presently travelling, and will do even more so in the next few days complete with max jet lag).

      I was thinking of OGP suggesting we “give slack to Obama”. That sounds polite and civilized. For suggesting an exponentiation out of Social Security? An idea so devious the Republicans themselves did not suggest it yet?

      I should explain what I mean by “insults”. Continually, Harvard is depicted as the world’s best university. It and Princeton. And the rest of the Ivy League. A girl made a scandal by suggesting that, for other girls going through Princeton like her, the best thing to do was to get a rich guy.

      I went to elite USA universities, the very best on the private and public side, both as a student, and a teacher. So I know the extravagant way they depict themselves (“excellence” is a preferred word). Generally those depictions are widely accepted, worldwide. Now I see that aura of plutocratic “excellence” leading to Armageddon.

      Those universities are called “private”, but they are both plutocratically and publicly financed.

      Harvard, true, is powerful. As soon as Polanski made a movie about Harvard, and the web that Harvard has set, like a venomous planetary spider, the USA got him arrested, and tried to bring him to the USA (to put him in jail forever).

      So call it not the Ivy League, but the Evil League. That’s the sort of things that I mean by insults. Voltaire called the Catholique Church, “l’infame”. In the end, it worked. It took 150 years, but the Church got expropriated.

      I’m reading right now a very recent book about the Third Reich. So far, nearly not a word about the role the USA plutocratic network played in the rise of Hitler (although Harvard is heavily mentioned, and although it’s recognized that the embassy of the USA was contacted by the plotters, and knew about the plot by the entire German army chiefs of staff to kill Hitler in 1937-1938, and that Roosevelt and the Sec. of State were informed!).

      Facts are not enough. Facts is what the opponents of Hitler waited for.

      Although I do agree with what you say, I am familiar with greenhouse catastrophe sites which pile up facts, in vain. What was expected 20 years ago in climate is developing with great precision. Facts have changed nothing. What one needs to do is withdraw the legitimacy respect has been providing our masters with.
      PA

  7. Patrice Ayme Says:

    It’s hard to overestimate the importance of lies such as the ones about austerity, that austerity brings jobs. Of these things, world wars have been made. How long will people consent to go without jobs?

    Carmen R was just celebrated by propaganda (Times Magazine) as the world’s most influential female economist.

    See Krugman:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/22/opinion/krugman-the-jobless-trap.html?smid=tw-NytimesKrugman

  8. old geezer pilot Says:

    I always ask myself, ‘is there something these guys know that I do not, or they just evil greedy b*stards?’

    Because if you choose the latter, then you can justify any argument.

    Remember, the last 200 years of capitalism have been sustained by the unsustainable – compound growth on capital and infinite planetary resources.

    Now, we are at the half-way mark in raping the planet. But we have all that global wealth out there that is still looking for 5% per annum but there is no more growth out there (at least using the old model) to sustain it. So the Masters of the Universe are telling us to cut back.

    It is good advice, ecologically.

    Most certainly, this goal could be attained more equitably.

    But whoever suggests that must be a socialist.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear OGP: It’s both. They feel they know something we do not, a very deep truth, and something they cannot talk about. The latter point proving that they are indeed greedy crocodiles, more than fully balanced human beings. (See, the insults are coming! But insulting our intelligence they have long done, especially Harvard…)

      My argument to justify that we are facing a Greater depression is that everything is coming together simultaneously. The only difference with the collapse of Rome, is that the west, at this very moment, is still in military control.

      The great discovery our masters have made is that they think that the Dark Side is what make mankind tick. And they devote themselves to show the example that way. It’s a much darkened variant of the Ayn Rand’s creativity stuff.

      As far as socialism is concerned, human beings are social animals. Just as there is no civilization without capitalism, the cities being capital, there is no humanity without socialism, man’s mind and body being created by socialism.
      PA

    • Hazxan Says:

      “I always ask myself, ‘is there something these guys know that I do not, or they just evil greedy b*stards?’”

      Both? Maybe a secret cabal vets the super-rich, the Gates, Buffets, Zuckenbergs, Bransons et al. at a young age and ensures that only those who follow the creed of greed are allowed into the club. If there is any chance one of them would say “Hey, look, it just isn’t fair. Most of you are working damn hard and your reward is being taken from you and going to a parasitic elite minority”, then he/she/it would never get near control of the hog trough.

      For decades, I’ve looked for a sincere insight into the psychology of these ultra-wealthy. Despite zillions of books written on everything, I still wait for one on this subject. Not counting the trite, flattering, superficial, obsequious “Millionaires Mindset” and “The Secret” style nonsense. Recently, some psychological research did at last look at the wealthy, finding that they were more dishonest and just not very nice people all round. However, the research was rather light and flawed, viewing wealthy as earning over $100k for example. I want to know what is going on inside the heads of those who could single handedly solve social problems in the 3rd world, but instead buy another helicopter, a bigger yacht, another $50 million mansion to add the to 4 they already have.

      They really do manage to avoid real scrutiny. But then as Patrice points out, that is another aspect of Plutocracy. Not just rule by wealth, but remaining hidden, in the dark.

  9. old geezer pilot Says:

    “Just as there is no civilization without capitalism, the cities being capital, there is no humanity without socialism, man’s mind and body being created by socialism.”

    That is really quite profound, PA. Without some sort of social construct, we are lower than wild beasts who at least do not prey on each other.

    Funny thing. There is a lot of “capital” in the world, in the form of cities, where people live, but also farms from which they eat.

    And the roadways to bring it to them.

    It seems to me that the problem facing the world is that 200 years of constant growth must come to a halt, because we live on a finite planet, and we have half exhausted it. But the vast store of capital of which you and I speak DEMANDS a return on investment of a nominal 5 % per annum, and that amounts to a large percentage of global GDP.

    Add in a growing population (all of whom would like to eat and sleep better) and you see that the capital class’s increasing share is getting harder to tolerate.

    What is to be done? (as someone once asked)

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Thanks Old Geezer Pilot. I thought initially you were making fun of me, as I read the line “it’s really profound…”. I’m becoming paranoiac…Hahaha. But I guess not. It’s indeed a triviality, the fact civilization is capital, but constantly, and i would even dare say, MALICIOUSLY overlooked. so Stalin could rant against capitalism, thus dissimulating the fact he was himself the world’ number one capitalist (as he was CEO of the largest enterprise in the world, the USSR).

      Same with fascism: Stalin led the world’s largest momolithic fascist system, and dissimulated that by ranting against… fascism.

      Thus all blanket critiques against “capitalism” are blanket critiques of civilization, thus self contradictory, thus INEPT…

      The present situation in not new in essence. Many times before, civilizations have been forced into extinction or revolution. Because they were up the ecological-technological blind alley. Now have long passed the “NO EXIT” sign. What’s new is the ampliyude of the crisis. I just made it to the Old Continent here, for mt inspection tour. French president is at all time approval low for a Fifth Constitution president (25%). In contrast, I don’t understand how Obama has succeeded to stay as popular as he is… Probably lower expectations…
      PA

    • pshakkottai Says:

      Re: “It seems to me that the problem facing the world is that 200 years of constant growth must come to a halt, …” Here is a possible solution proposed by Mitchell.

      1. Most Americans work primarily to obtain dollars.
      2. Americans use dollars to acquire life necessities and indulgences.
      3. The U.S. government has the unlimited ability to create dollars.

      Put them together and you have the beginnings of a solution: The federal government should provide more dollars for life necessities and even indulgences, with less requirement for human labor.

      Yes, of course, if no one worked, nothing would be done and we’d all starve. But we’re not talking about no one working. We’re talking about working less, and enjoying life more.

      And yes, some people love their work. No problem; they can continue to work, if they can find it. And yes, some people may choose not to work at all. No problem; they can live the life non-work affords.

      Now for the reality of the majority: Given previous points #1, #2 and #3, we can consider how we might plan for the inevitable disemployment:

      1. Legally reduce the traditional 40 hour work week to 30 hours and less.
      2. Prevent hunger for lack of dollars. The government could provide for everyone’s basic food supplies by paying grocery stores to offer free milk, meat, fish and vegetables.
      3. Provide health care for everyone. The government could pay for 100% Medicare for every American of all ages.
      4. Keep people from suffering homelessness. The government to pay for home mortgages at a minimum level (Rather than “minimum wage,” we could have “minimum home mortgage,” where people could add dollars for more expensive homes. Or “minimum rent,” something akin to the government paying for hotel stays).
      5. Just as today we provide free education, grades 1-12, the government should provide free college and advanced degree education to every American.
      6. Begin with government-paid-for local, public transportation, then expand this by paying airlines and railroads for free national public transportation.

      We began this discussion with three facts. There is a fourth fact: Disemployment is the future. As winter follows fall, nothing will stop it.

      Disemployment is not an “if.” It’s a “when” and the when is upon us. We can rail against the cold, or we can prepare. We should stop looking at unemployment as a problem to be solved, but rather as an eventuality and an opportunity to loosen the binds of obligatory labor.

      How would you make disemployment work? Rodger Malcolm Mitchell” from

      http://mythfighter.com/2012/08/22/how-would-you-make-disemployment-work/

      • Patrice Ayme Says:

        Dear Partha: I am still travelling, so I have little time to ponder all. However I was amused by the first three points, and the “solution”. Well, the YUAN made that exact same reasoning in China, about seven centuries ago. It led to hyper inflation of the Yuan paper money, and the (successful) Ming rebellion.
        Now the “Yuan” is, again, the official money of China, and I doubt the PRC wants to repeat the experience.

        This being said, the USA dollar is intimately related to the subject of “Strikes Against Civilization”. Basically, the USA would be bankrupt, without the recycling provided by the Saudi family.

        I may have to go back down to hell, and pursue my conversation…
        PA

  10. old geezer pilot Says:

    Would never make fun of you PA. Disagree, yes, fun, no.

    I don’t think we (and I use the genus descriptor of WE) have passed the no exit sign. We just have to change our ways.

    1. We have consumed half the earth’s resources. At a 3% growth rate, we will consume the other half in 24 years. So that is not an option.

    2. We can still have economic growth without planetary raping. We are ignoring the power of the SUN.

    It is the only resource that never runs out!

    We could (if we had the will) run a Manhattan project to completely electrify the USA using small swaths of 4 or 5 states in the southwest.

    Would put a lot of people to work, I might add.

    Why is Obama so ineffectual, and why do we still love him?

    I have answered the first part; I cannot the second.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear OGP: Fun is fun, I am a bit exaggerated sometimes. And sometimes that’s to make fun. Fun can drive points home; contemplate the Evil League. Or Oblabla.

      By no exit I did not mean that we cannot find any way out. I meant we have to back off (say off fossil fuels; or off nuclear proliferation), and find a better way to heaven, lest it revealed itself to be hell.

      Sol is not the sole remedy. First solar cells are very far from full potential. They have to start working at night. So far, efficiency: less than 1%. In the lab. So RESEARCH has to be founded MUCH MORE.

      More prominent now, we have to have storage. That means EFFICIENT, massive storage. We don’t, aside from hydro. A dam in every backyard may not please all. But I am for building dams next to wind plants.

      Otherwise one ends down like Denmark, with FAKE GREEN.

      Why do we love Obama? Well, he is finely tuned to be lovable and cuddly, with a smile a mile wide, it’s a plot. Also: no hope, no life. So obama represented hope, we were imprinted to view him as hope, and we are still that way. I always want to love Obama. Living with betrayal is no fun.
      PA

  11. old geezer pilot Says:

    Not to beat this thread to death, but while solar can never work at night, the overall numbers are in its favor – the entire world’s annual consumption of electric power equals what the sun sends to the world in one hour.

    Also, there are ways of extending the solar day by connecting power grids over wider longitudes, like from China to Spain.

    Incidentally, Libya is perfectly situated to be the solar center for all of Europe.

    And I hear they are looking for a new dictator.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Not to beat dead horses back to life, but “solar” can work at night! When the sun disappears, there is still plenty of radiation left. In Infra Red. Although plants were not bright enough to exploit IR, nothing prevents us to become smarter!

      Transporting electricity on enormous distance presents problems. There is a massive (German) plan to exploit Saharan solar, and sent the power to Europe, but that requires the French army to establish total control on the area, as it did a century ago. First.

      Everything is indeed connected. Libya is a complex situation. I favor the Berbers, thus fragmentation. They have their own alphabet, twice older (at least!) as Arabic. Looks like ours. Or rather, conversely.
      PA

  12. Dominique Deux Says:

    Reinhart-Rogoff again.

    The smokescreen has reached French shores practically before the blast itself did. Talk about efficiency. But then, Atlantico is a dedicated right-wing “news” media, the UMP’s e-pen.

    http://www.atlantico.fr/decryptage/austerite-pourquoi-erreur-calcul-reinhart-et-rogoff-ne-signe-en-rien-victoire-keynes-nicolas-goetzmann-et-simone-wapler-705274.html

    The spin is, predictably, that, anyway, the 90% threshold is not central to R&R and only Keneysians (read: the Devil) can claim austerity is harmful. For good measure, R&R are depicted as Keynesians themselves. Never hesitate to off toadies who fucked up, an old Mafia rule.

    Reminds one of Sarkozy sauntering around saying his preservation of France’s triple A rating was his greatest achievement and central to French economy, and then, when the rating crashed, shrugging it off as unimportant.

    Now we understand why the turgid Russian-born novelist and welfare state teat sucker who shall not be named called one of her unreadable bricks “Atlas shrugs”. When exposed, parasites shrug.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      When the USA lost AAA, USA interest rates fell…

      I think the best answer to the austerity madness is the graph I put in the essay. The whole story is in the graph: there a few years of high debt, but, when there are, although growth tends to be less, it’s no big deal.

      However, the situation in which we are now is a big deal. Austerity was tried in the begining of Great depression 1930. Several countries saw it did not work: USA (Roosevelt), UK, Germany (Hitler), Italy (Mussolini), Japan, USSR. France stayed austere years more than the rest, with dramatic consequences. Point is: the world, in the average, did 3 years of austerity.

      Now austerity has been tried for longer than that, already. And results are already worse than in the 1930s (if one looks at the right indicators).

      Interesting times.
      PA

  13. Dominique Deux Says:

    … and again.

    The IMF fiscal multiplicator blooper should really be called the A-A blooper (like the R-R one) because the initial error, later debunked by the IMF (and early enough by Krugman),

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/02/06/alesina-on-stimulus/

    was the brainchild of Alesina & Ardagna, both from… Harvard. What a surprise! and both studies published by the NBER.

    No wonder the greenhouse effect is soaring with all these smoking guns scattered everywhere.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dominique: Thanks for this reminder, I forgot to mention it explicitly. Harvard is the head of the snake. Goes with territory. After all, Boston government invented the scalps’ business. Also slavery was launched there.
      Hey, why to talk about the Tea Party, always? why to discriminate against more significant news? why to be intolerant of the most interesting perspectives?

      The Harvard syndrome even extends to pure science. One of the best mathematicians in the world quit math, all together, because of the abuse he got at the hands of his worse enemy… Professor at… Harvard. (Perelman versus S.T. Yau…) The scandal got so intense it hit the New York Times and New Yorker, big time…
      PA

  14. Adeel Qamar Mirza Says:

    Very nice post of the article about the economics.

  15. Dominique Deux Says:

    An astonishing op/ed by R&R in the NYT where they assert they made no big mistake and they were not responsible for the political use which was made of their work.

    The comments, as usual in the NYT, are the interesting part. The readers are utterly unimpressed by that posturing.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/26/opinion/debt-growth-and-the-austerity-debate.html?ref=business&_r=0

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dominique: Yes, but they manipulate the comments’ ranking (mine showed a number 200 something, whereas it should have been one of the eraly ones. I think R & R are liars, and even krugamn does not give it the essential, which is the graph I showed. (Krugman instead accused them of wrongdoing…while using a graph that is not as damaging than the one I used, a crafty form of mitigating the critique…)
      PA

  16. old geezer pilot Says:

    Which is why I always click the “reader’s choice” button instead of NYT choice. The readers are often much more insightful than the Grey Lady.

  17. Hazxan Says:

    Not surprisingly, this hasn’t “Gone Viral” yet in mainstream workd…it’s fascinating to see how it’s been presented in the 90% plutocrat dominated media.

    Worst I’ve seen was the BBC who seem to miss the point totally and focus almost entirely on the MS Excel mistakes. No examination of how this slipped through supposed “peer review”

    In a sane society, we’d go back and put everything economists have ever written under the microscope. Perhaps even the Adam Smith “Just made it all up without any objective evidence”. Oh, but that’s exactly what he did! To be fair to our godfather Adam, the Wealth of Nations must be one of the “most quoted out of context” books since…. the Koran, perhaps? 🙂 He would probably be horrified if he knew what contemporary True Believers were doing in his name, with his words.

    After all he also wrote:
    “It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.” but that never gets quoted, unlike his vague concept of a ghostly hand.

    Anyway, it’s not just economics. The whole of scientific endeavour is being hijacked to serve the plutocracy. This is just one example of how easy it is to get a fallacious argument out into the mainstream. “Peer review” is after all, in any science, the review of the others who can describe the maginificence of the Emporers magic clothes.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      dear Hazxan: I agree with you that Muhammad was EXTREMELY progressive (for his time… Or even for today!). My attacks about the (version of the) Qur’an (we have now) are in agreement with the attacks Muhammad’s family made against it.

      The plutocrats are rushing to control the media, all over, as never before. They know that’s the final battle. If they win it, onwards to generations, maybe centuries, millennia, of neo-feudalism.

      The reason the rich have to be taxed more and more, the richer they are, is the exponential. Sustainable societies have known this for 12,000 years. This is what broke down in Rome around 140 BCE. The very strong anti-plutocratic laws of Rome were violated, but the crackdown came too late. The gracchi, themsleves as elite by birth and education as any arrived, after the annihilation of Carthage (Africa), Numantia (Iberia), and Corynth (Greece). Three philosophical red lines demolished by Pluto unchained.

      Satan, BTW, is well represented in the Qur’an…
      PA

      • Hazxan Says:

        Patrice, I agree that the key to ultra-wealth is the exponential. Even a mere percentage can be significant as a small percenage of a large number can also be a large number.

        In practice, tax is opposite to what you sensibly say. Those with the least, pay the most (proportionately) and as one earns more in a regular job, the increase in tax effectively stops you getting to the next level. It is the limited liability company that gets the tax benefits. Sometimes, it is so ludicrous, so blatantly out in the open, I can’t believe the people put up with it.

        For one, how come corporations get to pay tax only on profit, wheras employees pay tax on income? In the UK, an individual will lose around 1/3 of their income to tax. Then they will pay 20% VAT on almost every purchase they make. There are further taxes paid on items such as fuel and alcohol, where much, if not most, of the price is tax. And if after all this, you have any left to save, they will pay tax on the interest!

        Corporations only pay tax on profit, and they pay a lower rate than individuals. And still business rants on and on about “lowering the corporation tax” so we can “be competitive”. In reality, it seems profits and bonuses to the owners are high, and most companies can easily avoid payig any tax at all.

        But still high taxes on the high wealth seems to be “after the event”. How come a few take so much in the first place? I am intrigued by this situation where earnings are like an upside down pyramid. Take music, or novel writing for example. In both of these, the top one or two (Paul Macartney, J.K.Rowling) earn millions, while outside of these, there are tens of thousands of decent musicians and writers who earn next to nothng at all. It is as if there is a ‘snowball’ effect and the public start to buy only what is already popular, so we have an extreme exponential curve. The two best selling brands of unhealthy fizzy drinks (that earn billions for the owners) follow a similar pattern.

        Back on topic (kind of), I’ve never been convinced by any economic explanation of these gross imbalances in society. IMHO Power imbalances and social psychology (i.e. deception, fear, control) offer better explanations.

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Dear Hazxan: I got to get my next essay out, here. As I accuse more or less some authority to be nothing more than a stupid terrorist, I have to choose my words well…

          The problem with tax, right now, is that the worse and wealthiest pay not enough tax to inflect their exponentials. People on straight income pay huge taxes, even in the USA (more than 50% in my case). People on financial plots pay little, or none. Even Obama pays 15% only (effective tax rate), with some exemptions my tax accountant does not seem to understand. Then there are all the self employed, deeply dug into thousands of pages of the tax code (are they digging a well? Making a movie? etc.). I know self employed Germans who travel worldwide, first class, best hotels, all the time, all paid by Merkler. Clearly abusive.

          So are the foundation laws. Gates, for example (personal wealth 60 billions) double what he controls (to above 100 billions), thanks to his foundation. So he can do what my wealthy business German friends do, travel to the best accomodations in personal jets, for free, so he makes public spending a pawn of his plots with Monsanto. Etc.
          PA

  18. Jeff McG Says:

    Patrice,
    Reinhart-Rogoff Rebuttal Says UMass Critics Politicized Debt
    26 Apr 2013
    Harvard University economists Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff have defended the technical aspects of a 2010 paper… Reinhart and Rogoff wrote in a New York Times Op-Ed piece…
    In today’s “Morning Must Read,” Bloomberg’s Sara Eisen and Tom Keene recap the op-ed pieces and analyst notes providing insight behind today’s headlines. They speak on Bloomberg Television’s “Bloomberg Surveillance.”

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      “Bloomberg Surveillance?” At least, that’s honest. Well, Bloomberg not only controls New York, but more than ten billion dollars. A real plutocrat, another “philanthropist”… There is a massive plutocratic counter propaganda.
      I knew all along that the debt thing was a lie, it was completely obvious: countries with extremely high debt and very high growth were legions, even over multi-decadal periods, even in the West: USA, UK, Netherlands, France, etc.

      BTW, as I recommanded, debt can be defaulted out of. That is what should be done with usury (as was the case against some sovereigns in recent years).
      PA

      • Dominique Deux Says:

        The Industrial Revolution was built on coal, the navy, and debt. (the navy itself running on rum, sodomy and the leash).

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Dominique: You forgot…debt!

          Papin, a Frenchman, started the industrial revolution, in Germany, in the most spectacular way: building a steam boat. Something the Romans could have done, had they tried.

          Britain did better than France in the 18C to swallow its debt because king George III let PM Pitt run a ferocious debt reduction program. That was made possible, because the 8 million inhabitant Britain was more hierarchized, more aristocratic, more ferociously organized, and with much fewer very small stake holders, than the 28 million people France.

          OK, Signature Strikes incoming…
          PA

  19. Dominique Deux Says:

    Krugman making the link between A&A & R&R.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/26/opinion/krugman-the-one-percents-solution.html?_r=0

    Things are moving.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      One thing I can tell you, Dominique is that even the ONE PERCENT don’t make it. The “1%” on income, around $380,000 income, see, even in the USA, 50% of said income disappear in taxes. Then, for a family of 3, health insurance is at least 2,000 dolllars a month, school can be up to the median income (that’s why everybody is ready to buy a house in Palo Alto, by the freeway, to use the local public schools!) etc…

      The real problem is NOT the one percent, but the .01%… And the rentiers. The financiers, with their 15% maximum tax rate, etc. Talking just about the ONE PERCENT, is disinformation.

      Krugman published my comment on his editorial you linked to, within seconds of getting it, and I am going to publish here a much extended version.
      PA

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