Vincent Gaulin on Fri, 21 Aug 2020 12:24:39 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> A Historian of Economic Crisis on the World After

This article is like a neoliberal apologistâ??s playbook.

â??I donâ??t like the green new deal because it doesnâ??t define itâ??s business
alliances [paraphrase]â??, I guess they couldnâ??t join WWII without first
defining their business alliances first, either. Utter nonsense.

Also, Toose might as well have quoted Milton Freeman In his explanation of
the price wage spiral, which supposes that higher shares of profit paid to
labor will inevitably lead to inflation. Thatâ??s straight conservative
propaganda, drastically oversimplifying the complex way that wages and
productive/administrative capacity interact to constitute a dynamic or
stagnant economy. Because of these assumptions, the US has coasted on the
infrastructural investments and innovations of the Mid-Twentieth Century to
the point that roads and bridges are literally crumbling (not to mention
Education and Healthcare).

The US only sells bonds to â??primary dealersâ??, large banks who in their
treasuries buying capacity are licensed effectively agents of the state.
Unlike â??Big deal banker bossesâ?? who tell the US president what to do, what
the banks get out of this is basically guarantee income from US interest
payments (which the Fed creates or buys back, in so called quantitative
easing policy, out of thin air as a matter of public policy). This whole
practice is a hangover from the now defunct Breton-Woods â??gold standardâ??
dollar peg taken up by the allies after WWII, which ended with the Nixon
administration in 1971. Under the current fiat system, the US treasury
could issue currency directly without the customary bond auction, however
political elites are not ready to take on that level of responsibility. Why
actually hold yourself accountable when invoking the â??invisible handâ?? will
suffice. Paired this with the analytics (BS) machine behind the stock
market and you have the post-modern Devine Right of Kings.

The Cold War isnâ??t over? China is a threatening enemy? How about we frame
the conditions of political possibility around what mobilizations of real
people and technology we need to broaden and lift the global standards of
living whilst also not burning the planet down. Iâ??d say we have less of an
enemy problem and more of an agenda setting stagnancy.

Current estimates place about a $60trillion price tag on the amount of
carbon sequestration needed to stall the global climate shift. The US has
spend $3trillion just in the last quarter along, just paying people to stay
at home. We have a political will problem, not an inflation problem...

Not sure what posting this article hoped to accomplish, but the interviewâ??s
neoliberal framing is doing nothing to move the needle on the massive
paradigm shift needed to kick off an appropriate response to climate
change, the current (and future) pandemic, and the utter meaninglessness
imposed by â??the marketâ?? view of what constitutes employment. Folks that
want to work on the changes we desperately have no avenues for income while
attending their noble pursuits.

On Sun, Aug 9, 2020 at 1:00 AM nettime's_future_historian <>

> < >
> A Historian of Economic Crisis on the World After COVID-19
> By Eric Levitz
> @EricLevitz
> In March, history broke into our house, and ever since, we've been cowering in panic
> rooms, wondering what our home will look like when the mad thief is finally through.
> Or at least this is how living in the COVID era can feel. We know that an unprecedented
> economic cataclysm has rippled across the globe. But the precise consequences of this
> catastrophe -- for the global economy, geopolitics, climate change, and our own little
> lives -- remain opaque.
> If anyone can discern the outlines of what's on humanity's horizon, it may be Adam Tooze.
> Tooze is a leading expert on how economic crises have remade the modern world. His books
> have elucidated the role that fiscal quandaries played in bringing the Nazi regime to
> power and have charted the globe-spanning, geopolitical consequences of the 2008 crash.
> Intelligencer spoke with the economic historian this week about how the COVID-19 crisis is
> upending economic orthodoxy, his nightmare scenarios for the post-pandemic world, and
> whether the Cold War ever ended, among other things.
> [QUESTION] The COVID-19 crisis has sparked a lot of anxious introspection as we all try to
> figure out which parts of our model of the world still hold, and which parts the pandemic
> has discredited or destroyed. But even before the crisis, a central theme of your writing
> concerned the various ways in which geopolitical elites were already operating off of a
> set of ideological assumptions that had congealed in the 1990s and already gone rotten by
> 2008.  What did you see as the most pernicious, outdated assumption shaping global
> politics before COVID? And to what extent is the present crisis awakening policy-makers to
> the obsolescence of that idea?

*G. Vincent Gaulin*

211 Keese St.
Pendleton, SC
m. 864-247-8207

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