Tag Archives: budget deficit

USA: The budget (a history)


This week on Facebook: Just before Christmas I commented on an article posted on Facebook [see Facebook — The Nation] — not something that I do very often as comments on the election that resulted in Donald Trump being nominated President of the USA and the outcome of the Brexit referendum are for the most part simply (to my mind) the ravings of the disaffected. In this case I did listen to the related podcast giving rise to the leader by Robert Reich: Why Republicans Are Wrong About Taxes, commenting that Robert Reich may well be wrong. Read more of this post

Fleeced Again!


This week on Facebook: Being somewhat surprised by the scale of the political incompetence (although political connivance would fit equally well) that I came across in last week’s article on pensions, I decided that this week I would look a little deeper. I found that the sorry saga continues with perhaps the only positive slant that could be put on it would be that of politicians caring for their own stipends.  Read more of this post

Helicopter Money


This week on Facebook: Sees me return to economics, yet more history and the despair of an old man who — like all old men before me — thinks that the world is going to hell in a handcart. My first instinct was to ignore articles on helicopter money as it being something that I was incapable of having an influence on (which is true) and finding myself totally confused by the rationales offered by economists and politicians. Nevertheless, the notion of helicopter money made me think of some historic precedents that I believe are valid allusions to its use. Read more of this post

Green and Fiscal Ineptitude


This week on Facebook: The media are full of self-righteous indiction about Sir Philip Green and the BHS scandal, particularly when taking some moral high ground on the issue. Successive governments have always use other people’s money to fund their fiscal profligacy be it financiers or taxpayers, while those in government remain financially immune from their own ineptitude. Their financial consequences are avoided by governments, their financial advisors and bankers placing an ever increasing burden on the taxpayer. Governments run budget deficits that can never be large enough to repay the national debt but large enough to cover interest payments on monies borrowed (at least at the moment — countries do default). This borrowing includes the issue of gilts, the government’s legal Ponzi scheme, where future interest is guaranteed by yet another burden on the taxpayer. Read more of this post

Free Trade — not so transparent


This week on Facebook I intended to post some links on the age of transparency. This interest in transparency was prompted by a comment on a previous post, perhaps itself prompted by the recent revelations of the Panama Papers. Papers which raised great cries of indignation around the world and which will inevitably lead to less transparency in regard to their revelations. My web research for articles on transparency led me to conclude that we are living in an age of pseudo transparency, in which administrations, whatever their political hue, will constantly seek greater control over the pseudo transparency they permit. Articles on transparency are not easy to find, in fact the opposite is the case, there is a concerted effort to counteract and, where possible, suppress articles in the social media that could lead to any opposition an administration’s viewpoint. Read more of this post

That sacred cow the NHS


This week on Facebook I posted some links on the National Health Service (NHS). By the 1980s if society was divided by notions of a welfare state all strata of society were united in giving the NHS the status of a sacred cow. Yet from the moment of its inception in 1948 by the newly elected post World War II Labour Government, the NHS was unaffordable as a free service. Aneurin Bevan who, as the minister of health, was responsible for establishing an NHS that included free diagnosis and treatment for all, resigned from the government in 1951 as a protest against the introduction of prescription charges for dental care and spectacles. Read more of this post

The Budget Deficit – The Record


The role that economic theory plays in the creation of money — even if understood by a government —  is ignored in favour of economic manipulation for the purpose of a fiscal policy. Self interested post war governments have little interest in the social responsibility that Peter Drucker applied to a private enterprise.

“The first responsibility of business is to make enough profit to cover the costs for the future. If this social responsibility is not met, no other social responsibility can be met.”

Peter F. Drucker, The Practice of Management (1954)

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The Grasshopper and The Queen


Thomas Gresham had served three Tudor monarchs as their Royal Merchant¹ in Antwerp and had grown rich acting on their behalf. However, his success in arranging England’s financial transactions with bankers and money lenders was not always favourably received. It had also made him enemies in both financial and political circles. Some believed that he would often quite deliberately manipulate the money markets — cleverly duping them in his games of thimblerig² —  disadvantaging them financially and often politically. Knowing that his activities in Antwerp and elsewhere had made him these enemies, Gresham had an awareness of danger when confronted by it. This was obviously no chance encounter with a stranger who called himself Frances Walsingham. Not only had he identified Gresham in the crowded Antwerp bourse, he had addressed him by name and acknowledged by name his two factors Clough and Spritwell. The significance of this was not lost on Gresham nor was Walsingham’s demeanour, which was that of a dangerous man who it would be unwise to cross. Hoping that his alarm was not apparent, Gresham enquired if he could be of any assistance. Speaking in a low voice, almost a whisper, Walsingham told Gresham that he was under instructions to deliver a message to him only and that they should find somewhere quiet where they be could be certain of privacy. Read more of this post

2015 Election Year


In The debt we’re in (Jan 2011) I referred to a 2009 report by Brooks Newmark MP with the title The Hidden Debt Bombshell. In it Newmark claimed that the true level of government debt was £2,200 billion and not £805 billion as was reported by the Office for National Statistics. It’s interesting that Newmark has not written a similar report in the run-up to this years general election. However I can understand why. Read more of this post

Funny Money? (SNAFU)


On Thursday 20th November Parliament will debate ‘Money Creation and Society’ (pdf). This is probably the most important economic debate to precede a general election since the Banking Act of 1844 and one which most politicians would like to avoid. While the majority of the public may not know how money is created, the fact that most politicians do not have any understanding of ‘money creation and how we arrived here’ ought to be of great discomfort to them. These politicians being the very people in control of the economy. Read more of this post

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