WATCHING AMERICA COLLAPSE
by Paul Craig Roberts
Comments by Charles Sulka
The first paragraph of this post by Paul Craig Roberts proves that no one can be right all the time. Roberts was a leading proponent of supply-side economics (which was sometimes referred to as trickle-down economics), also known as Reaganomics. Trickle-down economics has been roundly refuted by reality and disavowed by nearly all of today’s economists (save the neoliberal hold outs.)
To quote a few of the comments made by economists as cited in the Wikipedia entry for supply-side economics:
* Some contemporary economists do not consider supply-side economics a tenable economic theory, with Alan Blinder calling it an “ill-fated” and perhaps “silly” school on the pages of a 2006 textbook. Greg Mankiw, former chairman of President George W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers, offered similarly sharp criticism of the school in the early editions of his introductory economics textbook. Mankiw wrote in June 2017: “Tax cuts rarely pay for themselves. My reading of the academic literature leads me to believe that about one-third of the cost of a typical tax cut is recouped with faster economic growth.”
* In a 1992 article for the Harvard International Review, James Tobin wrote: [The] idea that tax cuts would actually increase revenues turned out to deserve the ridicule […]
* Critics of Reaganomics claim it failed to produce much of the exaggerated gains some supply-siders had promised. Paul Krugman later summarized the situation: “When Ronald Reagan was elected, the supply-siders got a chance to try out their ideas. Unfortunately, they failed”
* Nobel laureate economist Milton Friedman agreed the tax cuts would reduce tax revenues and result in intolerable deficits ….
* The specific set of foolish ideas that has laid claim to the name “supply side economics” is a crank doctrine that would have had little influence if it did not appeal to the prejudices of editors and wealthy men.
— Paul Krugman
* Mr. David Stockman has said that supply-side economics was merely a cover for the trickle-down approach to economic policy — what an older and less elegant generation called the horse-and-sparrow theory: If you feed the horse enough oats, some will pass through to the road for the sparrows.
— John Kenneth Galbraith
PCR is beating a dead horse with his insistence that trickle-down economics (Reaganomics) was a boon to the American economy. Quite the opposite is true, in fact. Supply-side economics has brought America to its knees, bringing the world’s greatest economy to the brink of collapse, and in only a few short years.
Being acknowledged by some as the architect of this economic theory, of course PCR is heavily invested in neoliberal economic policy. It is sometimes hard to let go. But if Roberts is to fulfill his destiny and play a central role in leading the nation out of the darkness, then he must let go of this bad idea that has such a hold on his psyche and his soul.
The only thing that will save America is a repudiation of neoliberal economics — supply-side economics aka voodoo economics. Tax cuts do not raise revenues. Austerity does not improve the economy. Off-shoring American manufacturing jobs does not lead to economic growth. Everything the neoliberal economists have told us is bunk. Everything the lying politicians are telling us is nonsense. Don’t believe a word of it. Use your head! Think!
The only thing that will save America is demand-side stimulus, the exact opposite of supply-side (trickle-down) economics. Demand-side stimulus means massive public spending. Borrow and spend, tax and spend, it doesn’t matter, so long as we spend, widely and wisely. This means pumping the money in at the bottom of the economy, and not at the top — definitely not in the hands of the bankers and Wall Street shysters who will do nothing productive with it, only steal every penny they can get their hands on. Spend on roads, bridges, schools, hospitals, the environment, public services … but not bombs, missiles, rockets, and especially not useless and exorbitantly expensive weapons systems such as aircraft carriers (sitting ducks), F-35 jet planes (clay pigeons), more and better nuclear weapons (my goodness what an absurdity), etc. Rebuilding a vibrant manufacturing sector, eliminating the parasitic financial sector, and restoring fairness and common sense and most of all opportunity and hope for a better future to all Americans….
It is really simple. But it is the hardest thing in the world to let go.
PCR is at the top of the list of political thinkers, being head and shoulders above all but a very few…. But Roberts is not the pope; neither Roberts (nor the pope) is infallible. PCR must renounce supply-side economics, embrace MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) as the appropriate mechanism for a sovereign nation to rebuild its economy through demand-side economic stimulus, and move forward. There is a lot of hard work to be done, and it will take every ounce of our energy. It is time for PCR to cast off this heavy load — to get rid of the baggage of his brain-child, trickle-down economics … and look to the future.
PCR is a good man. If he can do this — if he can admit that as a young man he was led astray by deceiving spirits and his youthful exuberance and half-baked economic theories played a major role in America’s economic demise — then he can become a leading spokesman for the new economic order, promoting the reasoned economic thinking the world so desperately needs in the Disinformation Age.
We look forward to Mr. Roberts joining us in the Resistance.
(chs 09-03-2018 1729 -0500)
Watching America Collapse
Existence is running out for America
By Paul Craig Roberts
August 24, 2018 “Information Clearing House” – In the 1950s and 1960s the United States was a vibrant society. Upward mobility was strong, and the middle class expanded. During the 1970s the internal contradiction in Keynesian demand management resulted in stagflation. Reagan’s supply-side economic policy cured that. With a sound economy under him, Reagan was able to pressure the Soviet government, which was unable to solve its economic problem, to negotiate the end of the cold war.
This happy development was not welcomed by powerful forces, both in the US and Soviet Union. In the US the powerful military/security complex was unhappy about losing the Soviet Threat, under the auspices of which its budget and power had soared. Right-wing superpatriot conservatives accused Reagan of selling out America by trusting the Soviets. The American rightwing portrayed President Reagan as the grade-two movie actor dupe of “cunning communists.”
In the Soviet government Gorbachev faced a larger problem. With trust established between the two nuclear powers, Gorbachev released the Soviet hold on Eastern Europe. Hardline elements in the Soviet Communist Party saw too much change too rapidly and concluded that Gorbachev had sold out the Soviet Union to Washington. This conclusion resulted in Gorbachev’s arrest, and the consequence of his arrest was the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Communist Party.
With communism departed, the Russians forgot all of Marx’s lessons about capitalism and naively concluded that we were all now friends. The Yeltsin government opened to American advice and, by naively accepting American advice, Russia was looted and reduced to penury. Russia under Yeltsin became an American puppet state, and the Russian people paid for it with a great reduction in their living standard.
The collapse of the Soviet Union is usually attributed to Reagan and represented as one of his victories. This is a fabrication. I was in Reagan’s government, both as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury and afterward as a member of a secret Presidential Committee with subpeona power over the CIA. Reagan told us many times that his purpose was not to win the Cold War but to end it.
He told everyone involved that all respect had to be shown to the Soviets as the purpose was to end the threat of nuclear war, not to have an insulting triumphal victory.
Unfortunately, the trust Reagan established with the Russians was betrayed by the corrupt and criminal Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama regimes. Because of these utterly corrupt regimes, today the distrust between the US and Russia is far higher than ever existed during the long decades of the Cold War. What the criminal Clinton, Bush, and Obama regimes did was to resurrect the possibility of nuclear war that Reagan and Gorbachev had terminated.
As I have explained at length and as all available evidence supports, the attact on Trump rests on an orchestration called “Russiagate,” for which no evidence exists. It is an orchestration concocted by John Brennan, James Comey, Clapper, Rod Rosenstein, Mueller, and the Democratic National Committee. The transparent lies on which “Russiagate” is based are repeated continually by the presstitute media in an effort to create in the public mind a case for the removal of Trump from the Oval Office. See for example: https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2018/08/23/the-brennan-rosenstein-mueller-comey-presstitute-witch-hunt/
Also see: http://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/402959-cohens-plea-deal-is-prosecutors-attempt-to-set-up-trump
Mueller is part of the plot against Trump as is Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general who appointed Mueller special prosecutor. Both are guilty of sedition as they are active participants in an organized coup to overthrow the President of the United States. But Trump is too powerless to have them arrested and put on trial for the conspiracy against democracy that they are conducting. President Trump is making a terminable mistake in trusting to facts and truth, neither of which is respected in the scant remains of Western Civilization.
Once there was hope that information available on the Internet would serve as a countervailing power to the lies told by the Western print, TV, and NPR presstitutes. But this was a vain hope. There are some good and reliable websites, increasingly being closed down by the ruling elite. The ruling elites have most of the money and can finance most of the online voices, all of which are employed for the purpose of contradicting truth.
I received today an email from RootsAction urging me to donate money to speed Trump’s impeachment. The website has even prepared the Articles of Impeachment and proclaims that “Trump’s Fixer Says the President Engaged in a Criminal Conspiracy to Sway the 2016 Election.”
This accusation comes from one of Trump’s former lawyers, Michael Cohen. They are allegations that most defense attorneys understand is Michael Cohen’s effort to gain a light sentence for his income tax evasion by “composing,” to use the term of Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, evidence against the man Mueller really wants—President Trump.
I will be unequivocal. RootsAction, as is the NY Times, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, NPR and the rest of the media whores, is lying. To pay off two women, who might have been paid by the military/security complex, or Hillary & Bill Clinton, or the Democratic National Committee, to bring such charges or who simply saw an opportunity to collect a bunch of dollars from Donald Trump, is most certainly, most definitely not, as RootsAction claims, “the high crime and misdemeanor of attempting to fraudulently influence the outcome of a US presidential election. This is an impeahable offense warranting removal from office.”
Whoever advises RootsAction is a totally incompetent attorney. Moreover, to show the utter stupidity of RootsAction’s ignorant assertion, a “misdemeanor” cannot be a “high crime.” A “high crime” is a “felony.”
I have posted on my website statements from legal experts that there is nothing unlawful about paying off claimants. Corporations do it continually. It is much cheaper to pay off a false claim than to finance a court case to refute it. There is no reason whatsoever for a political candidate competing for a party’s nomination for the presidency to be distracted by fighting court cases brought to extort money from him.
Moreover, considering the dire straints in which the American population between the two coasts has been left by decades of jobs offshoring, the government’s inability to provide assistance to those millions of Americans whose living standard is dissolving because the military/security complex appropriates $1,000 billion annually from America’s resources, and the Trump public’s awareness that provoking Russia into war is in no one’s interest, RootsAction and the rest of the imbeciles have to be crazy beyond all belief to think that that anyone who voted for Trump cared if he had sexual encounters with two women. Considering the dire straits of Americans, the last thing they would do is to vote against their champion because he had sex with two women, assuming that he did.
Yet, an unsubstantiated claim by a lawyer who did not pay his income tax, a claim made for the purpose of a light sentence in exchange for providing false evidence against the President of the United States, is now, according to RootsAction, the New York Times, Washington Post, NPR, CNN, MSNBC, etc., and so on, grounds for impeaching the President of the United States who hopes to defuse the extremely dangerous tensions between Washington and Russia.
The military/security complex wants to impeach Trump because he wants peace with Russia, thus taking away the essential enemy that justifies their budget and power.
Are Americans too stupid to notice that there is not a shred of evidence of the “Russiagate” accusations? What we have in their place is income tax evasion charges, not against Trump, but against an attorney and a Republian campaign manager. More convincing charges could be brought against Democrats, but have not. The Hillary crowd of criminals has proven immune to prosecution.
No one has to approve of Trump in order to have the intelligence to see that Trump’s intention to normalize relations with Russia is the world’s main hope of continued existence. Once nuclear weapons go off, global warming will take on new meaning.
After three eight-year terms of US presidents, relations between the US and Russia stand at a far more dangerous level than ever existed during the Cold War. I know this for a fact, as I was directly involved in the Cold War.
The security that insouciant Americans find in the belief that only the US is a superpower is ignorant beyond all belief. A new book by Andrei Martyanov published by Clarity Press proves that, at best, the US is a second rate military power that can be utterly destroyed at will by Russia along with the entirety of the stupid NATO countries, every one of which is militarily impotent. In the present correlation of forces, nothing whatsoever can be done to save a square inch of the Western world if Russia ever has enough of the absurd accusations, absurd threats, absurd postering of a totally inferior military power drunk on its own ignorant hubris.
Americans are too insouciant to know it, but they are living day by day only at the mercy of Russia.
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments. His internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Roberts’ latest books are The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West, How America Was Lost, and The Neoconservative Threat to World Order.
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TITL: Watching America Collapse. Existence is running out for America
AUTH: PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
SUBJ: [ECONOMICS] [PARADIGMS] [NEOLIBERAL]
SUBJ: [ECONOMICS] [FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES] [SUPPLY-SIDE ECONOMICS] (TRICKLE-DOWN ECONOMICS)
SUBJ: [US POLITICS] [NEOLIBERALISM]
TYPE: TEXT FILE (FROM WEB SITE HTML)
PUBL: ICH (INFORMATION CLEARING HOUSE (.COM))
DATE: AUGUST 24, 2018
UPDT: 08-25-2018 1607 -0500
DBFN: WATCHING AMERICA COLLAPSE (ICH)(P. C. ROBERTS).TXT