Establishing an Association

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This is mainly of interest to Sydney members: I need to form an Association, primarily to administer the funds that have been raised via donations to this blog (and also www.keenwalk.com.au).

Donations have totalled over A$10,000 so far, and while I had thought this raised no income liability for me, I have been informed that it could be regarded as income by taxation authorities. Forming an Association to manage the funds will overcome this difficulty.

Debtwatch No. 43: Declaring victory at half time

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Note: the first part of this post will mainly be of interest just to Australian readers, but I conclude with a numerical explanation of “Why Debt-Deflation Causes Depressions” that will be of interest to readers everywhere.

Last week I took part in a debate entitled “The Great Residential Housing Debate – the next Bubble or a legitimate Boom?” at the annual conference for Perennial Investment Partners; I put the Bubble case and Chris Joye of Rismark International presented the Boom case (here is my paper and my presentation). As is well-known, Australia is one of the few countries in the OECD not to experience two quarters or more of falling GDP as a result of the GFC, and probably the only country that has not experienced a fall in its property market.

Adam Schwab’s Pigs at the Trough

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Adam Schwab has followed up his many columns on Crikey with a book on the pillage of Australian companies by Ponzi financiers and incompetent executives. Some of the companies mismanaged and in many cases fleeced by these once high-flying executives no longer exist–but the executives are still “high flyers” since the crash of their corporations didn’t seem to affect their own personal wealth.

The book, Pigs at the Trough, is launched today, and having read it I do commend it to Debtwatch readers. The preface to the book, which gives a good feeling for both its subject and its flavour, is reproduced below.

On The Record Interview

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Carson Scott interviewed me for Sky News Business Channel last week for the program On The Record. Rather than focusing on the news of the day, this program attempts to give the background to people in public life.

As such there’s more of a focus on the reasons why I have taken the activist stand that I have on the economy than on my analysis of the economy itself. While some of this focuses on my family and educational background, it also gave me the opportunity to explain that my major motivation was the desire to rid economics of the pseudo-scientific Neoclassical nonsense that dominated economics since the early 1950s.

Max Keiser Interview

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Max Keiser interviewed me in his inestimable style on the Max Keiser Report earlier this week, and the interview is now available (the interview began at roughly midnight my time on a day that had started for me at 5am, so there are some slips in my delivery here–for instance at one point I say “fail to avoid” when I meant “avoid”).

I’ve had some difficulties in getting the embed to work (the latest version of WordPress seems to do something untoward to the embed code) so you may need to hit the “refresh” button before you’ll see the video below.

Greenspan wins Dynamite Prize in Economics

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Alan Greenspan has been judged the economist most responsible for causing the Global Financial Crisis. He, and 2ndand 3rd place finishers Milton Friedman and Larry Summers, have won the first–and hopefully last—Dynamite Prize in Economics.

In awarding the Prize, Edward Fullbrook, editor of the Real World Economics Review, noted that “They have been judged to be the three economists most responsible for the Global Financial Crisis. More figuratively, they are the three economists most responsible for blowing up the global economy.”

Doonesbury on Banking Pigs

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I’ve been a fan of Garry Trudeau’s Doonesbury cartoon since my student days (when, coincidentally, Trudeau was profiling life as a university student).

As any reader of the strip knows, unlike most comic strips the characters in Doonesbury age and move with the times. Today’s times are those of a financial crisis, and once again I’m playing a role–though as analyst and critic rather than participant. Ditto also Trudeau, who has posted a lovely little jibe in today’s Sunday spread. For all those who are exasperated with the spin doctors and debt spruikers who have grown fat while bringing the globe to the economic precipice, I recommend today’s Doonesbury cartoon (Sunday February 21).

Launching the Talk Finance Forum

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Many visitors to this site have commented that, though the discussions are very informative, they are also very difficult to follow. A discussion that begins under one post will recommence under another, and with over 200 posts and 16,000 comments so far, that makes following a complete thread of discussion effectively impossible. It was noted that a forum with structured discussion headings might be a better way to go. So we have established the Talk Finance Forum

http://www.talkfinance.net/

Jessica Irvine’s piece in today’s SMH

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(Edit: Please note that there is a footnote to this story)

I normally don’t comment on articles about me, since I am aware that now that my views are part of the public debate, I have to take the good with the bad in coverage. I wouldn’t have written this either, were it not for the line “If only his predictions were so reliable” in Jessica Irvine’s piece in today’s SMH “Walking on a wire stretched between stimulus and debt“.

Brilliant Business Insider Article on Dynamite Prize

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The Dynamite Prize for Economics–to be awarded to the three economists most responsible for the Global Financial Crisis–is going gangbusters with over 14,000 votes so far.

It may pick up even more thanks to some excellent work by Business Insider/Clusterstock, which has produced a brilliant graphic illustrating the prize.

It’s magnificent, and here it is below for your enjoyment–click on the “Go To The Short List of Nominees for the Dynamite Prize in Economics–>” link and that will take you to the graphic, or click here to go straight to the graphic.