From the Modern Money and Public Purpose series of seminars held at Columbia University
MMT is not distinct. Nor does it claim to be.
I was not going to make this post as I saw the claim MMT is not distinct made by an economist that I have already addressed in past critic engagement pieces. However, I recently saw this piece by Fabius Maximus making much the same argument.
“MMT simply describes the way in which the institutional arrangements are set up, and the accounting identities and what happens in a balance sheet framework; when one side of the equation moves, what happens on the other side of the equation? That’s really all we are about.” – Stephanie Kelton, 2010, Fiscal Sustainability Counter-Conference.
MMT stands on the shoulder of giants – Knapp, Innes, Lerner, Marx, Kalecki, Keynes, Schumpeter, Minsky and more.
Three months ago, Frank Newman sent me a book entitled Freedom From National Debt. I finally got around to reading it — all 89 pages. It’s a little book, packed with evidence that America is being held back by incorrect assumptions and misguided fears about the national debt and government finance in general. Here’s the takeaway:
America has convinced itself that it can no longer afford many of the productive things that it has done so well over its history. Infrastructure repair, jobs programs, military modernization, tax reduction…have all been stifled because of this fear.
Like the proponents of MMT, Mr. Newman is frustrated by the pervasiveness of these falsehoods and their devastating effects on our social and economic well-being. He sees what we see, the potential for a vastly more prosperous, more stable, and more secure America that is being kept out of reach through the adoption of economic policies that were designed for a country whose currency was still tied to gold.
He draws many of the same “unconventional conclusions” reached by proponents of MMT: