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Forum Post: Michael Hudson Economics Dictionary - excerpt 4/6/14

Posted 6 months ago on April 6, 2014, 12:12 p.m. EST by agkaiser (1307) from Fredericksburg, TX
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Race to the bottom: A term for dog-eat-dog competition by which countries compete by cutting wage levels so as to produce in the cheapest market, not by raising wages and labor productivity. The effect is to shrink the circular flow between producers and employee-consumers, leading to declining living standards. Under these circumstances productivity is increased only by working the existing labor force more intensively and cutting back medical insurance, old-age pensions and other social welfare expenditures. (See Free Market.)

The state of Alabama shows the inner contradiction inherent in this policy. When the state cut back educational and health spending in order to minimize taxes, ostensibly to attract business, global companies pulled out on the ground that its labor force was too low-skilled and in too bad health to compete in the modern high-technology world.

Reaganomics: An economic slogan for the policy of cutting taxes for the wealthy (and especially for real estate) while increasing the Social Security tax on employees. (See Tax Shift and Laffer Curve). The effect was to quadruple the public debt during the Reagan-Bush administration, 1981-92. In addition to tax cuts, Reaganomics dismantled environmental regulations and deregulated industry in general, producing a stock-market and real estate boom that was the precursor to the economic bubble of the 1990s. See Chicago School and Asset-Price Inflation.

Real estate: Originally "royal" estate, reflecting the idea that property is held on behalf of the ruler, who in turn is charged with responsibility for steering society's forward evolution. As property has become privatized, however, real estate has been turned into an economic cost for society at large, as its members are obliged to pay tolls for access to the land in the form of groundrent, while real estate investors and speculators seek capital gains.

Reality economics: A term for the study of economics subject to verification by empirical evidence rather than a body of abstract deductive assumptions by neoclassical and neoliberal economics that do not seek to be realistic. As Arthur Schopenhauer observed: "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed; second, it is violently opposed; and third, it is accepted as self-evident."

excerpted from: http://michael-hudson.com/tag/the-insiders-economic-dictionary/

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[-] 5 points by agkaiser (1307) from Fredericksburg, TX 6 months ago

Here's the next definition:

Reform: Just as Newton’s Third Law of Motion states that every action produces an equal and opposite reaction, so the political pendulum swings from one extreme to the other, so that one century's flawed reform thus becomes the policy against which the next century fights. Whereas the classical aim of modern reform was to strip away unearned privilege and free lunches, today's post-modern reform is retrogressive, taking the shape of an economic counter-Enlightenment. In Russia, for example, the "reformers" have been denounced as kleptocrats, while similar privatization and client oligarchies in third-world countries are being supported by Neoliberals and the Washington Consensus.

[-] 3 points by Ache4Change (3158) 6 months ago

'In America of the late nineteenth century, the lackeys of robber barons literally deposited sacks of money on the desks of pliant legislators, prompting the great jurist Louis Brandeis to note that the nation had a choice: “We can have a democracy or we can have great wealth in the hands of a few,” he said. “But we cannot have both.”

'Soon thereafter America made the choice. Public outrage gave birth to the nation’s first campaign finance laws, along with the first progressive income tax. The trusts were broken up and regulations imposed to bar impure food and drugs. Several states enacted America’s first labor protections, including the 40-hour workweek.'

'The question is when do we reach another tipping point, and what happens then?' - Excerpted from -

http://www.nationofchange.org/mccutcheon-and-vicious-cycle-concentrated-wealth-and-political-power-1396622890

The US Constitution has been usurped. Never Give Up On Democracy! Occupy All Streets! Solidarity.

[-] 2 points by flip (7174) 6 months ago

nice job, Hudson is very sharp