Market Fundamentalism as a Religion | The Isocracy Network by Chet Gaines. Image from Wonkette of people praying to the Golden Bull on Wall Street for economic improvement. Modern economic theory is presented as a science. Elaborate mathematics and diagrams are employed to derive principles that are assumed to be universal among economic actors, even though the specialized math used is a “dated version” (Keen 6) and such diagrams “often contain outright fallacies” (Keen 14). After a closer examination of the dominant economic theory and its critics, one might come to the conclusion that it is actually a belief system quite similar to a religion, not an actual scientific study. “(1) a system of symbols which acts to (2) establish powerful, pervasive, and long-lasting moods and motivations in men by (3) formulating conceptions of a general order of existence and (4) clothing these conceptions with such an aura of factuality that (5) the moods and motivations seem uniquely realistic.” Works Cited Benkler, Yochai. Bowie, Fiona. Disaster Center.
Max-Neef Model of Human-Scale Development Kath Fisher: "Manfred Max-Neef is a Chilean economist who has worked for many years with the problem of development in the Third World, articulating the inappropriateness of conventional models of development, that have lead to increasing poverty, massive debt and ecological disaster for many Third World communities. He works for the Centre for Development Alternatives in Chile, an organisation dedicated to the reorientation of development which stimulates local needs. Max-Neef and his colleagues have developed a taxonomy of human needs and a process by which communities can identify their "wealths" and "poverties" according to how these needs are satisfied. The main contribution that Max-Neef makes to the understanding of needs is the distinction made between needs and satisfiers. Graphic with 36 cell matrix at
Have Anthropologists Overturned Menger? - Robert P. Murphy Last week the popular blog "naked capitalism" ran an interview with David Graeber, an "economic anthropologist" whose new book allegedly destroys the standard account of the origin of money. If correct, Graeber's views would prove embarrassing to the Austrian School, because it was none other than Carl Menger who developed the first systematic explanation for how people went from barter to a full-blown monetary economy. As we'll see, Graeber's critique of the standard (Mengerian) view is much weaker than he believes, while his own explanation makes no sense. Furthermore, we have actual case studies of the development of a new money, which fit the Mengerian story. All in all, I see nothing in Graeber's interview to make me question Menger's orthodox approach. Menger on the Origin of Money In an earlier article I systematically laid out the Mengerian position, as well as the extensions that Ludwig von Mises provided, in the area of monetary theory. Graeber Doesn't Buy It Conclusion
Why cops lie Police officer perjury in court to justify illegal dope searches is commonplace. One of the dirty little not-so-secret secrets of the criminal justice system is undercover narcotics officers intentionally lying under oath. It is a perversion of the American justice system that strikes directly at the rule of law. Yet it is the routine way of doing business in courtrooms everywhere in America. Count this as one more casualty of the "war on drugs." Why do police, whom we trust as role models of legal conduct, show contempt for the law by systematically perjuring themselves? The first reason is because they get away with it. Another reason is the nature of most drug cases and the likely type of person involved. But the main reason is that the job of these cops is chasing drugs. Maybe the video tape scandal from the Henry Hotel will help change this culture.
FALSE ALARM: Why Almost Everything We’ve Been Told About Global Warming is Misleading, Exaggerated, or Plain Wrong Marx Was Right: Five Surprising Ways Karl Marx Predicted 2014 There's a lot of talk of Karl Marx in the air these days – from Rush Limbaugh accusing Pope Francis of promoting "pure Marxism" to a Washington Times writer claiming that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is an "unrepentant Marxist." But few people actually understand Marx's trenchant critique of capitalism. Most people are vaguely aware of the radical economist's prediction that capitalism would inevitably be replaced by communism, but they often misunderstand why he believed this to be true. Here are five facts of life in 2014 that Marx's analysis of capitalism correctly predicted more than a century ago: 1. The inherently chaotic, crisis-prone nature of capitalism was a key part of Marx's writings. 2. Marx warned that capitalism's tendency to concentrate high value on essentially arbitrary products would, over time, lead to what he called "a contriving and ever-calculating subservience to inhuman, sophisticated, unnatural and imaginary appetites." 3. 4. 5. In Conclusion:
Read Online | Sacred Economics | Charles Eisenstein Subscribe to Charles Newsletter Connect on Facebook Read Online Welcome to the HTML version of Sacred Economics. The full version is here in English, along with full and partial translations into other languages. More translated material comes on-line all the time, so check back often. Sacred Economics Full text of Sacred Economics in Romanian can be found here. Introduction: (German) (Swedish) (French) (Hungarian) (Italian) (Dutch) (Greek) (Polish) Chapter 1: The Gift World (German)(Swedish) (Polish) (Dutch) (Italian)(Greek – Part 1)(Greek – Part 2) Chapter 2: Greed and the Illusion of Scarcity (German) (Swedish) (Polish) (Dutch) (Greek Part 1) (Greek Part 2) Chapter 3: Money and the Mind (German) (Swedish) (Polish)(Dutch) (Greek Part 1) (Greek Part 2) Chapter 4: The Trouble with Property (German) (Swedish) (Polish) (Greek Part 1)(Greek Part 2) Chapter 5: The Corpse of the Commons (German) (Swedish) (Polish) (Greek Part 1) (Greek Part 2) Chapter 23: A New Materialism (German) (Swedish)(Greek)
Michael Hudson on How Finance Capital Leads to Debt Servitude This edited transcript is expanded from a live phone interview with Michael Hudson by Dimitris Yannopoulos for Athens News. It summarizes some of the major themes from Hudson’s new book, The Bubble and Beyond: Fictitious Capital, Debt Deflation and Global Crisis, which is available on Amazon. Q: How has the financial system evolved into the form of economic servitude that you call “debt peonage” in your book, implying a negation of democracy as well as free-market capitalism as classically understood? A: The original hope of banking and finance capitalism in the 19th century was that banks would make productive loans to finance industry. This was defined as productive lending. As matters have turned out, banking has allied itself with real estate, mineral extraction, oil, gas and monopolies instead of with industry. Banks have the privilege of creating credit and charging for access to it. This is the basic problem with the Anglo-American-Dutch banking system. A: Just the opposite.
Dylan Evans – On evolution and inequality When The Spirit Level: Why Equality is Better for Everyone by Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett came out in 2009, it chimed well with the post-crash mood. The book claimed that higher levels of inequality were associated with a whole range of poor health issues, including lower life expectancy, increased obesity, and higher murder rates. It seemed that those fat cat bankers hadn’t just wrecked the financial system: they were making us all ill, too. Subsequently, however, these claims came in for a great deal of criticism, especially from sociologists on the libertarian end of the political spectrum. Evolutionary biology casts considerable light on this question. It was only when the first humans started farming, around 10,000 years ago, that it became possible for one person to accumulate many more possessions than another. It would hardly be surprising then if the sudden appearance of inequality didn’t have deleterious consequences for the human mind and body. 17 January 2013 Comments
How To Win Every Argument So you want to know how to win every argument? Stop trying. Not that passivity is the most effective strategy but if you’re thinking about “winning” you’re already headed down the wrong path. From a neuroscience perspective, “When an argument starts, persuasion stops.” Via Compelling People: The Hidden Qualities That Make Us Influential: When an argument starts, persuasion stops. This is what happens when a discussion becomes an argument. We’ve all been there: doing anything to win, it’s messy, no progress is made or (god forbid) acknowledged. What’s the real problem? Daniel Cohen explains how the whole war metaphor is inherently problematic in his TED talk: Once it’s war, we’re no longer focused on what’s right, we just want to win by any means necessary. Nobody wants to admit they’re wrong because it’s now a status game — and that’s where “winning” comes from, it’s a metaphoric struggle for life and death now and nobody wants to die. Most people can’t even take feedback well. One Final Note
Masters Of Money Episode 3 Karl Marx Documentary) Four Arguments on Sacred Economics A summary of the main proposals in Charles Eistenstein’s book, Sacred Economics. Excerpted from Devin Martin: ” I would like to offer a brief summary and commentary on four key ideas contained in his work. * The Problem with Positive Interest This relates to the issue of how money is created. The way that we create money today promises, even demands scarcity. In order to keep money flowing we require something to generate an increase in GDP. Is there another option? The simplistic interpretations of Darwin’s theme of survival of the fittest that once ruled popular thinking are beginning to be challenged with ideas of cooperation and mutual benefit in all realms of research and academia (*). In a sustainable economy the flow of relationships is recognized as primary to sustaining life. * The Promise of Negative Interest “Negative interest allows productive investment to continue, and money to circulate, even when the marginal return on capital is zero or less…” Why are we in a recession now?