When money drives almost all activity on the planet, it’s essential that we understand it. Yet simple questions often get overlooked – questions like: Where does money come from? Who creates it? Who decides how it gets used? And what does that mean for the millions of ordinary people who suffer when money and finance breaks down?
In May 2011, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) published a Working Paper by Burcu Aydin called ‘Ghana: Will It Be Gifted Or Will It Be Cursed?’ (WP/11/104). Oil had just been discovered off the shore of Ghana. This anticipated a bounty of revenue for the country. Aydin asks whether Ghana will face the ‘resource curse’. The resource curse – also known as the Dutch Disease – occurs where revenue from sale of this resource rushes into a country, appreciates the currency and causes a major crisis in other parts of the economy. Looking at 150 middle- and low-income countries, Aydin came up with a strong finding: ‘Results show that there is a poverty trap for poor resource-rich countries due to their low institutional quality’. Bad governance and poor macroeconomic management, Aydin suggests, diminish the possibility for the onrush of revenues from natural resources to enhance a country’s development. There is no mention, in the IMF’s Working Paper, of the other actors in the process – namely, the multinational companies that dominate the natural resource extraction business. The pro-corporate literature explains problems in the resource economy in two ways: 1) poor macroeconomic management that allows revenues to flood the economy and appreciate the currency, 2) bad governance because of corruption and theft by government officials.
By Michael Hudson, a research professor of Economics at University of Missouri, Kansas City, and a research associate at the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College. His latest book is “and forgive them their debts”: Lending, Foreclosure and Redemption from Bronze Age Finance to the Jubilee Year Jointly posted with Hudson’s website
11 October 2017 — FAIR
CNBC (10/4/17) assumes that “you” are among the “more than 500,000 individual bondholders” or the “hundreds of thousands more investors with small exposure through mutual funds”—despite the fact that it gets 43 million visitors a month.
With crushing debt threatening to annihilate its economy (CounterSpin, 7/31/15, 5/12/17), the island of Puerto Rico was already desperate. Then came Hurricane Maria, the September storm that tore through the US colony, leaving most of the island’s residents without power and many without water. The official death toll on the island from the Category 4 storm that packed winds of up to 155 miles per hour is at 43—and hospitals and funeral homes have said that the toll is significantly underreported.
Cancel the debt now!
To expect Puerto Rico to rebuild from this unnatural disaster while at the same time bailing out Wall Street financiers is to condemn its residents to a permanent state of crushing hardship and impoverishment.
by Stan Cox and Paul Cox
Three months ago, the Hellenic Parliament in Greece decided to establish the Truth Committee on the Public Debt to examine the origin of the accumulation of that negative value, of capital’s anti-matter called debt, that has, pretty much, sucked Greece into a black hole.
1. The Short
—Submit the “reform package” agreed to by Syriza government to the parliament for a vote
—No to the “reform package” agreed to by the Syriza ministers
–No confidence in the Syriza government
–Repudiate the debt, the MFFA, and the reforms in their entirety.
28 February 2015 — The Wolf Report: Nonconfidential analysis for the anti-investor
Richard Seymour, VIB, wrote on SIP Louis Proyect’s chat-list:
No formal count was taken at this meeting, but according to Stathis Kouvelakis, 30 MPs were out of the room when the vote was taken and 40 abstained or voted against. If this is right, then a third of those present voted against. He recounts that most speakers – some 80 MPs – criticised the deal, in an emotional and turbulent meeting that went on for 12 hours.
27 February 2015 — The Wolf Report: Nonconfidential analysis for the anti-investor
I know a cat named Doctor Yani…
He knows just what makes the eurozone tick
He does that hand jive just for kicks
On Tuesday, February 24, 2015, the Syriza government of Greece presented its “first comprehensive list of reform measures” to the president of the Eurogroup. The Eurogroup is what the committee made up of the finance ministers of countries using the euro as currency is called when it actually meets.
24 February 2015 — The Wolf Report: Nonconfidential analysis for the anti-investor
1. A day late and more than a dollar short, Yanis Varoufakis submitted a “program” of reforms to the Eurozone finance ministers (Eurogroup) regarding the Greek government’s development and implementation of tax policies, public finance management, revenue administration, public spending, social security reform, public administration and corruption, instalment schemes, labor market reforms, product market reforms, better business environment, judicial system reforms, banking and non-performing loans, privatisation and public asset management, statistics, and last and certainly least, the humanitarian crisis where Yanis sums it up perfectly, puts a cherry on it, wraps it with a bow, seals it with a kiss—
23 February 2015 — The Wolf Report: Nonconfidential analysis for the anti-investor
The Syriza government has postponed submitting its proposed list of “reforms” to the European Union. The “reforms” were due on Monday, 23 February, but the Syriza ministers won’t be ready until tomorrow. Indeed. That–“won’t be ready until……”– describes Syriza’s leadership perfectly.