Friday, 4 September 2015

The Most Important Thing To Know About Inflation

h/t Tim Price.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

A Not So New Reason For Avoiding "I"

But I've also noticed a new reason for avoiding "I": Americans are unwilling to go out on a limb. A generation ago our leaders told us where they stood and what they believed. Today they perform strenuous verbal feats to escape that fate. Watch them wriggle through TV interviews without committing themselves.

William K. Zinsser, On Writing Well (from 2001)

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Dr Pat Gunning on "Courses in Business Ethics"

Here's a gem from Austrian school economist Dr Pat Gunning from a discussion on courses in business ethics,
It seems to me that courses in business ethics are simply another means of promoting the progressive agenda in colleges and universities.
If you think ethics is necessary, then you should begin with comparing business promises with political promises.
Then you should teach how, under capitalism, for the most part, the pursuit of personal interests through profit seeking enables everyone, whether they care about profits or not, to enjoy a share of the mountains of goods and services that pour forth.
Finally, you should teach about how governments relieve thieves, cheaters and liars of the responsibilities for the damage they do. If it weren't for the regulatory agents and interventionists, these nasties would otherwise face severe penalties under a strict law of liability for their damaging actions.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

The Crank Report, Issue #9 (1 September 2015)

In this issue: 
  • Money, Banks and Fractional Reserves
  • The Bank Credit Cycle
  • U.S. Bank Credit: Just an Intermediate Peak or the End of this Cycle?
  • The "Austrian" True Money Supply Weekly - Steady, but Slow Decline in the Growth Rate
  • Crash Alert: The Money Supply to Saving Ratio hits All-Time High
  • The U.S. Stock Market Risk Indicator: Still Time to Avoid Major Losses
  • Table: The "Austrian" True Money Supply - 1981 to YTD 2015

<click top right corner to enlarge>

Monday, 31 August 2015

There is No Such Thing as...

...perfection in human knowledge, nor for that matter in any other human achievement. 
...a universally valid logic. 
...a calculation of values. unpopular government. 
...a mixed economy, a system that would be in part capitalistic and in part socialist. 
...quantitative economics. 
...prices outside the market. 
...a money with stable purchasing power. 
...a "war" between the central banks. 
...perfection in human things. abstract or ideal 'capital that exists apart from concrete capital goods. 
...a nonspeculative investment. abstract saving that could provide for all classes of want-satisfaction and would be neutral with regard to changes occurring in conditions and valuations. 
...nonmarket wage rates, just as there are no nonmarket prices. 
...a physiologically and biologically determined minimum of subsistence, valid for every specimen of the zoological species homo sapien. 
...a mere recording of unadulterated facts apart from any reference to theories. 
...a safe investment. 
...independence of the vicissitudes of the market.

Ludwig von Mises, Human Action

It's All About Growth. Fed Asset Growth That is...

Friday, 28 August 2015

The Calm Before the Storm?

See The Crank Report, Issue #2 (6 April 2015) for an explanation of The Money Relation. 

The U.S. Economy: The Ever Sliding Purchasing Power of Disposable Personal Income

As of July 2015

Eating the Seed Corn

As of Q2 2015

Thursday, 27 August 2015

The Economic Meaning and Consequences of Debt

Originally published in The Crank Report, Issue #5.

Debt, debt, yet more debt. Politics, mainstream economics and other popular arenas dominated by feelings and collective notions of what should be right or wrong for all suffer from one major flaw: the inability and inherent reluctance to think critically and learn from fundamentally sound theory and history. For decades, western economies, the economic powerhouses of the world, have wrecked their economies with faulty economic doctrines making but one thing possible: an ever growing mountain of money. “Austerity” is allegedly destroying Europe and especially Greece, some utter. Remember, austerity today doesn’t mean cutting deficits. Instead it merely refers to reducing the speed at which these deficits grow. In the eurozone today, government debt is hovering above 90%. In the U.S., the country that has dominated not only the business world for a century or more, the 100% mark was quickly reached in the aftermath of the 2008 banking crisis. As money is created as debt in this world run by monetary cranks and demagogues and where democracy long gone is nothing short of a system to enter a vote to grab other peoples’ money against their will and ensure politicians and bureaucrats can remain in their ivory towers to continue the gradual confiscation of wealth and productivity, I thought it was appropriate to attempt to take a deeper look at the economic meaning and consequences of debt and shed some light on why economic growth in the two regions is likely to be dismal at best for a very long time indeed.