on debt and economics

Two, related, articles today of note; worth reading if only to trigger reflection.

In Europe it has frozen Germany into a fixed position in relation to fiscally stricken countries such as Greece over what is reasonable behaviour in relation to debt. In much of the Anglosphere the concept of persuadable political adversaries risks being supplanted by that of implacable enemies engaged in brutal winner-takes-all politics.

In Australia, too; this essay more than accounts for this.

While enthusiasm for Keynesian stimulus is by no means universal among economists, almost none of them think that cutting government spending when the economy is slowing is a good idea. […] Two other Nobel Prize–winning economists, Joseph Stiglitz and Paul Krugman, have argued repeatedly that cutting spending while the economy is slowing is proven to increase unemployment. They have also pointed out that policies increasing inequality rarely produce long-term social or economic benefits.

This last point — emphasis mine — is important: someone who is selfish enough to believe the winner-take-all, fuck-the-poor approach to social services is the right one, is ultimately doing themselves no service whatsoever.

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