My fellow Post Keynesian and good mate Professor John Harvey published an excellent piece on his Forbes blog today, pointing out the fallacy of composition in the pro-austerity. He took his cue from anti-austerity riots in Belgium:
Riot police have fired tear gas and water cannon during clashes with demonstrators as at least 100,000 people marched through Brussels in the first mass protests against government austerity measures. (“Belgian protesters clash with police over pensions and pay”, BBC News Europe)
Then he pointed out that the pro-austerity argument is fallacy of composition. That’s a hard concept to get through—especially, it turns out, to conventionally trained economists. So John used a brilliant example from American football:
Cartoonist Miguel Guerra and I went on The Keiser Report to talk about the project to produce a comic book (or “graphic novel”) version of Debunking Economics. Check out the interview, and then please head over to either Kickstarter or Startjoin to help this project come into being. We’re interviewed in the second half of the show, starting at the 12 minute mark in the video below.
Samuelson once wrote that he didn’t care who wrote a country’s laws, so long as he wrote the textbooks. Let’s get in front of Samuelson, and write the comic book that undermines his textbooks.
SOAS is holding an event to recognise the late Fred Lee’s outstanding contributions to developing a realistic microeconomics.
Date: 22 November 2014
Time: 9:00 AM-7:00 PM
Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings
Room: Khalili Lecture Theatre
Fred’s work is well known to Post Keynesian economists, especially through his monumental work Post Keynesian Price Theory, which documented the many empirical studies into the actual cost structures of firms–all of which contradict the fairy tale of rising marginal cost portrayed in mainstream economic textbooks. He also campaigned to promote the realistic approach to economics that is the hallmark of Post Keynesian economics–in contrast to the “let’s assume we have a can opener” approach of Neoclassical economics.
The wonderful team of Erin Ade, Ed Harrison and friends at Boom Bust did a fantastic item on the Crash! Boom! Pop! project. Check out the interview and the brilliant graphics they put together to showcase Miguel Guerra’s artistic talents. And then pop over to Kickstarter or Startjoin to help bring this project to life. The whole program is worth watching, but the item on Crash! Boom! Pop! begins halfway through the show (14 minutes & 50 seconds in).
If you want to get straight to the item, click on the link:
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(94 words, estimated 23 secs reading time)
A brilliant team of graphic artist Miguel Guerra, layout artist Suzy Dias, and writer Genevieve Tran have combined to produce what I can describe as a “cartoon version of Debunking Economics”. They plan to produce up to six graphic novels around the theme of “M” (Money, Mayhem–the Financial Crisis–Method, Macro and Micro), to use visual media to take the mickey out of economics for those who don’t want to wade through a 500 page book.
They’re running a Kickstarter campaign now–starting on the 85th anniversary of Black Tuesday 1929.
Russell Standish asked me to thank those who have donated to keep him available for the Minsky project: A total of about $7500 has been raised to date.
I have set up the payments now so that they go straight to Russell’s PayPal account. One user did ask about alternative payment methods; Russell’s comment was that bank fees make a direct bank account transfer only worthwhile either for an Australian donation, or for a very large sum from a non-Australian bank account.
I am continuing to explore other potential funding options–and there are a couple of promising leads. But until they come through, continuing support from the community would be most welcome.
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(114 words, estimated 27 secs reading time)
Thanks to all those who have chipped in to help keep Russell Standish available for coding Minsky. The proverbial person with deep pockets hasn’t yet materialized, but about 25 people with shallower ones but generous souls have chipped in a total of just under $2000.
I’ve now altered the Paypal link on my site so that the payments go directly to Russell’s Paypal account.
To anyone out there with deep pockets–or to lots of people with shallower ones–I need financial assistance for the Minsky program. I have been waiting for funding from a source that I’ll reveal once it finally comes through, but it has now been delayed for over six months from when it was first mooted to arrive. If I am lucky, it will come through in January–another 4 months away.
The problem is that I may lose my programmer by then to the vicissitudes of having to earn a living. I have been the architect of Minsky, but Russell Standish has been the builder, and I was incredibly lucky to secure his services when the project began 3 years ago.
This is the talk I gave at the first conference of the International Student Initiative for Pluralism in Economics, held in the beautiful German town of Tuebingen, Germany on September 19–21 2014.
I cover Minsky, money, complexity, the role of debt in aggregate demand & aggregate supply, and the economic crisis. I spoke too fast and covered topics at too high a level for many of the undergraduate students in the audience who are part of the rebellion against the dominance of economics tuition and research by Neoclassical economics. I hope putting it up here gives those students and others a chance to “hit the pause button” and go through my talk more slowly.
Scotland voted 55:45 to remain in the UK, but the very fact that the vote was even close was a serious shock to the political establishment in Europe. UK Prime Minister David Cameron had originally allowed only a Yes or No vote on full independence in the referendum, rather than a three-option poll including the “Maybe” of a greater devolution of power from Whitehall to Edinburgh, in the belief that the No vote would be so resounding that it would terminate the independence movement permanently. The Maybe, he believed, might well have got across the line, when in general he and the Tories didn’t want to cede any power north of Hadrian’s Wall.