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Austerity: Still Bad?
December 1, 2013 6:36 PM   Subscribe

Paul Krugman: Monetary and Fiscal Implications of Secular Stagnation
Crooked Timber: If this is “secular stagnation”, I want my old job back
The Global Bezzle – whence it came, where it went and why it matters (repost from 2011)

Naked Capitalism: Mario Seccareccia: Larry Summers, Secular Stagnation, and the Crisis of the New Consensus Model
Krugman: Stagflation, Stagnation and Intellectual Asymmetry

Larry Summers At IMF Economic Forum
American Enterprise Institute: The Slump That Never Ends: Does the US face “secular stagnation”?
Larry Summers gives us the bad news. Worse, the only solution is more of the same.

p.s. Betteridge's law of headlines
posted by the man of twists and turns (28 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
I've heard of Betteridge's law before, but not under that name, just the sentiment. Reading the wikipedia article for it lead me to this awesome article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_eponymous_laws

/derail
posted by el io at 7:26 PM on December 1, 2013


I love Krugman, and austerity is a crock, but I'm afraid monetary policy, inflation targets etc., are all merely glancing blows at what is going on. Technology has radically changed how society functions. We can produce a heck of a lot using very few people. That trend will only increase. Employment targets are going to become increasingly unattainable, unless we radically change our priorities as a society - and on a global scale. Society must be reorganized. We've gone through wrenching changes when we transitioned from an agricultural economy to the industrial revolution, and now we must take the next leap, except we must do it in much less time than we had in the agriculture --> industrial transformation. Meanwhile, I see little discussion along these lines among the movers and the shakers. Austerity strikes me as rear-guard action of a losing system that is bereft of ideas, a mere insisting that more of the same that hasn't worked before is going to work now. Instead, what we need is a new paradigm. Where are the policymakers who recognize that?
posted by VikingSword at 7:27 PM on December 1, 2013 [19 favorites]


Instead, what we need is a new paradigm. Where are the policymakers who recognize that?
Unemployed, with the rest of the unnecessary people.
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:36 PM on December 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


I have an English degree, it's almost bedtime, and I'm 40k in debt. Anyone want to just give me a summary of all of this like I'm five years old?
posted by SansPoint at 7:50 PM on December 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


What would such a new paradigm look like though, VS? We've seen some movement towards a basic income model, but I fear that future given the extant political climate in the U.S. and E.U. Especially when people given income support in the form of the EITC or Social Security are buying in to the notion of the electorate being made up of 47% "takers" — consisting primarily of "those people" of course — as it is.
posted by ob1quixote at 8:00 PM on December 1, 2013


Anyone want to just give me a summary of all of this like I'm five years old?

Trend in US Share of Manufacturing Employment Has Not Changed
The Uncomfortable Truth About American Wages -"When we consider all working-age men, including those who are not working, the real earnings of the median male have actually declined by 19 percent since 1970. This means that the median man in 2010 earned as much as the median man did in 1964 — nearly a half century ago."
Changes In Income Growth Rates Since 1970
Wages Aren't Stagnating, They're Plummeting
Our Economic Pickle - "Caterpillar's plant in Winston-Salem, N.C. The company reported record profits last year but froze wages for many of its workers."

TL;DR - The problem wasn't 2008 and some bad financial actors. The problem started in the 70's.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:09 PM on December 1, 2013 [9 favorites]


I don't think it makes sense to talk about the problem. Our current economic and political situation is not so simple as to admit a single-factor explanation.
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 8:15 PM on December 1, 2013 [2 favorites]


We can produce a heck of a lot using very few people. That trend will only increase.

That and the Chinese government has been amazingly good at bringing a billion low-skill, low-cost labourers into the employment market in just a few decades. It's a surprise that anyone gets paid any amount of money to assemble anything any more.
posted by GuyZero at 9:24 PM on December 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think it is much more realistic to understand that the economic and policy models that were being used to make decisions were fundamentally flawed from the outset if you really want to understand the current and future economic situation.

Realistically, hardly anyone actually behaves financially in the ways in which just about every school of economics tries to model. Even the behavioral economists don't really have a full understanding of the ways in which economic actors form decisions, or they have to allow for so much variability that the predictive aspects of their model is pretty much good for about a minute into the future.

However, we can catalog and base new decisions on the mistakes in the existing framework, if we really wanted to.

One of the "fun" things about the NSA snooping business is the increased ability to track large volumes of metadata about individuals. You can trace the actions of millions of people simply by looking at the paper trail that they leave behind them, solely through financial transactions (well, at least electronic/information based ones; i.e. credit cards, mortgages, bank accounts, etc). If you were to model the real-world data of several million people and plot it over the course of the past few decades, you might actually get a better picture of what the economy actually is, and not just a picture of one small sector (the financial sector primarily). Instead of looking at the flux of stock prices, look at the actual savings and expenditure rates of individuals, and you will come back with an entirely different model than what almost every macro-economist is working from.

For example, you'd see the actual savings rate of American wage earners is probably negative, and has been for several decades (rate of savings and capitol earnings through stocks/401K versus credit card debt and other forms of long term debt). You might even see how someone who is vested in a large pension fund can go from a positive wealth rating to deeply negative due to shifts in the stock market, and how those people who are "on paper" millionaires are in real terms further in debt than someone living paycheck to paycheck. And then you will also likely see a small number of economic actors who have such stratospheric wealth that even if the economy were to grind to a complete halt, their living standard and situation would be unchanged.

Of course, that's just my theory, and as a data junkie, I think having such a model would be extremely interesting to model and graph out over time. Of course, almost all of that data is shielded by financial privacy laws and other factors, so access to it would be extremely difficult to obtain. Not to mention how many different methods and means in which the data is stored (between paper filing cabinets and enormous proprietary accounting systems). But to get a real idea of how everything works, you would kind of need to be able to see just how the day to day operations of every actor in the economy actually functions, and not make wild speculations without empirical evidence.

If anything, I think almost every economist still bases their models around such a poorly understood reality that I don't think anyone can effectively "fix" any kind of problem we currently face, short of a radical reset or massively invasive tearing down of the firewalls that protect individuals financial information. I am, however, open to other ideas.
posted by daq at 9:44 PM on December 1, 2013 [3 favorites]


What would such a new paradigm look like though, VS?

Communism! Joking, but only after a fashion. There is no alternative, but for the state to take control of a large part of production, and the subsequent distribution of services. Many mixes of private/state production ownership have been tried from essentially zero private and 99% state (former Communist countries) to the other extreme (early capitalism), and everything in between. The most successful model for keeping social peace, decent social relationships and welfare have been the earlier Scandinavian type mixes of substantial state ownership with a reasonable private. The problem for Scandinavia has been the fact that those are small economies that are forced to interact with the global economy that runs according to different rules - with the result of "and that's why we can't have nice things". The world would need to substantially move to the same system for that to work - and of course the difficulty is that countries are at dramatically different stages of development.

Be that as it may, basic needs of the population can be satisfied through the state. In developed countries, such as the U.S., food production is done with a relatively small part of the labor market. Food is such a fundamental need, that the state ought to have a substantial direct ownership stake - it would not take much to run this, and it would banish hunger. Small set asides would be allowed for private ownership, where the higher end of the market demand may be satisfied. If you want artisanal olive oil, you can turn to the private production, but staples would be produced and controlled by the state. Increased technology utilization would make that process ever cheaper - logical sci-fi end of that of course, would be agriculture ran by a handful of people and masses of robots :). Housing - again substantial state ownership, so nobody needs to go without a roof over their heads, but set aside some space for the private ownership to address up market demand. Healthcare - same thing.

When technology has developed so far that production can be done economically on a large scale, you have the opportunity to guarantee that basic human needs are met, and state ownership provides security against exploitation. You should leave enough space for private initiative to allow for experimentation, development, and market differentiation. This way, anyone who has the ambition and drive can go into the private sector. But nobody need fear falling into destitution either.

A sensible tax policy would also be necessary so that ridiculous inequality does not result, nor undue accumulation of economic power in a small number of private hands.

That would be a beginning.
posted by VikingSword at 9:48 PM on December 1, 2013 [10 favorites]


Corporate America’s push to outsource jobs — whether call-center jobs to India or factory jobs to China — has fattened corporate earnings, while holding down wages at home. New technologies have raised productivity and profits, while enabling companies to shed workers and slice payroll.

That one's from the NYT article ("Our Economic Pickle") linked above. When I read it, the realization suddenly dawned that *this* is what activists were protesting in Seattle all those years ago. Wish I'd understood that better back then, because it's surely kicking us now.
posted by librarylis at 9:51 PM on December 1, 2013 [1 favorite]


One of Krugman's main points is that the problem is a simple lack of demand that can be solved with traditional monetary and fiscal policy. It's not a structural problem of workers having the wrong skills or the like. That may be a problem longer term. But right now we could be back at full employment really quite easily (well, if not for the GOP).
posted by professor plum with a rope at 1:26 AM on December 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


TL;DR - The problem wasn't 2008 and some bad financial actors. The problem started in the 70's.

Correct!
posted by JoeXIII007 at 3:00 AM on December 2, 2013


Benchmark dates:
8/15/1971: Dollar off gold standard. Magic Money Wand of Fiat.
8/23/1971: Powell Memorandum. 'Citizen' = 'corporation'; 'human' = 'consumer'.
(Correlation, not causality.)

Subsequent deregulation allowed physical capital to be leveraged, to the degree that the underlying value was on the order of magnitude of the bonus in the pocket of the leverager. Securitized derivatives ramped this up, in that failure meant the underlying asset would be liquidated to pay the financial wizard less than the expected interest rate. Quantitative Easing appears to be the blowing of hot air to keep this froth of bubbles from collapsing to a soapscum on top of the underlying asset (see Mortgage Backed Securities).

Summers appears to be saying we are now in a brave newer world order, where there doesn't need to be any underlying asset. Productivity means Price, it has no other meaning.

The corollary is that Summers believes Knowledge is Power, and Power is Money. It means a transfer of wealth to those with the knowledge that price is about to drop (see Wall Street), and the means to act on that knowledge quickly (trading in milliseconds, rather than calling your broker).

It could be that Larry has spoken more truth than he was supposed to. Perhaps he was irritated by being passed over for the Fed Chair. Disenfranchized insiders can be dangerous (see Watergate: Deep Throat).
posted by dragonsi55 at 3:46 AM on December 2, 2013


Found it.
The 40 Year Slump
The middle has fallen out of the American economy—precipitously since 2008, but it’s been falling out slowly and cumulatively for the past 40 years. Far from a statistical oddity, 1974 marked an epochal turn. The age of economic security ended. The age of anxiety began.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 4:08 AM on December 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


I realize now the title should be "still good?" if my headline is going to conform to the Law.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 5:09 AM on December 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Viking Sword: There is no alternative, but for the state to take control of a large part of production, and the subsequent distribution of services ... The most successful model for keeping social peace, decent social relationships and welfare have been the earlier Scandinavian type mixes of substantial state ownership with a reasonable private. The problem for Scandinavia has been the fact that those are small economies that are forced to interact with the global economy that runs according to different rules ... The world would need to substantially move to the same system for that to work ...
This is an interesting analysis, but for a return to nationalism there'd need to be considerable pushback against the forces of globalization. States would need to end the free (or near-free) movement of labour and currency across borders, impose strict price controls, give full public funding (with no external contributions allowed) to political parties, eliminate "foreign investment" in all internal markets (including real estate), and place hefty tariffs on foreign-made goods. Essentially, they'd have to take the EU and do everything the opposite way. And I do wonder if the internet (as we know it) would have to go as well, replaced by something that looked more like a series of parallel national intranets.

So many of the slogans of the internet age—"information/content wants to be free!"; "countries with the lowest wages get to manufacture all the goods"; "there are no borders"—have proved to be libertarian propaganda with real (and disastrous) consequences for workers: those who actually produce information, content, and goods. A global economy tends to reduce the price (and therefore value) of labour to zero. The working classes have known this for centuries. The middle classes are only just waking up to this fact as they see the internet allowing the kinds of labour they produce (creative labour) to be offshored and devalued in the same way manual labour has been under the global neoliberal regime. And I do wonder if that means that the necessary next move for anti-capitalists will be mass internet attacks. Not just attacks on banks and global internet commerce, but systematic attempts to permanently compromise the viability of the internet itself, and with it the ability of global capital to circulate freely.

So, in order to achieve the Scandinavian solution, we'd need to put up walls, both physical and virtual, and severely regulate what (and who) gets to go inside. It would be a world of suspicion and tensions, but perhaps no more so than we got used to in the mid-twentieth century. And it would certainly still be an unequal world, especially for those living in nations worst affected by climate change. I do wonder, though, if we're moving that way, or at least the popular will is. The big movement in Europe lately is political parties that combine socialism with outright xenophobia. It's not exactly a shining path, but it is, perhaps, the road ahead. Sorry, Bill: turns out we hate the world you've created. It's time to unplug from the global network.
posted by Sonny Jim at 5:19 AM on December 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


dani rodrik frames nationalism vs. globalization as a 'modern trilemma' whereby "democracy, national sovereignty and global economic integration are mutually incompatible: we can combine any two of the three, but never have all three simultaneously and in full."

cosma shalizi provides a nice summation: "we have to drop at least one of 'deep' globalization, democracy, and national sovereignty. This is convincing; and he is further persuasive that the obstacles to serious global governance, let alone democratic global governance, are still too big to overcome. This leaves trying to tame globalization, and keep it 'superficial' enough to let different countries preserve their own policies and institutional arrangements."

the eurozone is interesting in this regard as is a semi-devolution of nation states into regional metropolises, but wrt the absence of global governance, there may not be a world...

as for what to do and how to organize, just as the nation state was the non-obvious outcome of the industrial revolution (or feudalism from the neolithic) i think we're in a state of experimentation for whatever era it is that we appear to be entering in to, but which i hope will be characterized by altruism and cooperation :P of course it looks like we're very far from that as the establishment powers-that-be, who benefit from current arrangements, would seek to shape 'the overton window' -- the art of the possible as it were (to stay on top) -- but i think looking backwards we'll see our times as some ancien régime just as how now we view medieval europe!

anyway, re: communism/socialism/marxism (western civilization) in the 'hasn't really been tried yet' vein, i think worker ownership could take more of the middle ground and i see central banks evolving (with finance and the payments system) among other ways of adapting to a changing system we're apparently not that well equipped to handle so far...
posted by kliuless at 10:21 AM on December 2, 2013


Uh, what free movement of labor across borders?
posted by Steely-eyed Missile Man at 10:32 AM on December 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


Also, the other thing that I did not see or hear mention in this whole mess is the sizable effect of the Petrodollar and what effect it has had on locking in the current cycles and allowed so much of the bad policy to be implemented and maintained due to the entire world being locked into purchasing petroleum on a single market using only one currency (namely, the U.S. Dollar).

The big scary thing about the recent government shutdown and threat of default was that if China or other major countries stopped purchasing dollars (i.e. purchasing our debt) and started to buy petroleum using another currency, our whole house of cards would pretty much come to a screeching halt.

I'm guessing most mainstream economists don't really have a solution to this problem, so it's pretty much left as a constant, instead of being a variable.
posted by daq at 10:42 AM on December 2, 2013


The world is facing huge challenges that cannot be met with the economic and political tools we have at present. Take some environmental challenges, such as global warming and pollution.

One of the primary reasons why the state must have a substantial stake in the economy, is because without that, your entire national agenda is driven by private industry interests - and achieving a large common good such as an unpolluted environment and looming disasters like global warming is impossible when private industry that controls your economy sees its interests differently. And guess what happens when polluters and short-term profit motives are controlling the agenda. The tragedy of the commons must be overcome by the state stepping in. That can only happen when the state controls a large part of the economy - otherwise it will get steamrolled, as has been happening so far.

Unless the state has a large stake in the economy, it will always be subject to regulatory capture and generally regulation will be difficult. This is as true of the financial sector as of basic labor rights. You cannot control something you have only nominal political power over - you must have economic power too.

a return to nationalism

I would not call for a return to classical nationalism, or even complete nationalization of the economy. It is neither desirable nor necessary. Large swaths of the economy are not subject to international competition, and it is a common mistake to imagine that even where there is competition, state owned economic actors must always lose to private - that is the result of successful propaganda by laissez faire capitalism advocates; in fact, state owned industry can be extremely successful, sometimes so successful that measures are taken to cripple it; it also understates how successful can be state-private partnerships.

Important segments of the economy, such as healthcare, is pretty immune to competition as the experience in multiple countries has shown (otherwise we wouldn't be stuck with the awful U.S. healthcare monster). Real estate can be easily controlled - many countries don't allow foreign ownership at all - but I don't even think that's necessary. If there is state owned housing stock and development set aside so that the population can be guaranteed a roof over their heads, there is no harm in letting some - or even most - of the market be open to private capital. A lot of the service economy does not naturally lend itself to international competition and therefore can be regulated without fear of uncontrollable competition and so forth.

A global economy tends to reduce the price (and therefore value) of labour to zero.

and

So, in order to achieve the Scandinavian solution, we'd need to put up walls, both physical and virtual, and severely regulate what (and who) gets to go inside.

The U.S. and Europe plus Japan is most of the world economy, so there isn't the problem of being tiny Scandinavian economies. But in general, this is unduly pessimistic and operates according to economic models which are being rapidly superseded. First of all, it applies only to a portion of the economy as I pointed out before. But more importantly, this is subject to the very technological forces we've been watching upend present models of the economy. There is the flip side of "reduce the price of labor to zero" - countries such as China can compete on labor costs only until the point of zero. My factory employs 2000 people and I can't compete on labor costs. And now, technology. When my factory employs 5 highly skilled engineers who supervised 2000 robots that can output infinitely more than the original 2000 humans, my labor costs undercut the Chinese labor, no matter how cheap the latter. This, btw. has been happening all over. We produce more agricultural products with fewer people every decade since the 1900's. Cheap labor - especially illegal cheap labor (such as present day illegal immigrant labor, or even worse, slavery) - actually retards longer term productivity development. It was expensive labor that has driven technological progress and productivity gains. This is no different. When you cannot compete on labor costs, you'll find ways of increasing productivity through other means. That has been the history.

Now, there is a transitional period. Private industry, rather than invest in productivity growth, tends to go with the line of least resistance - disinvesting in local labor and transferring production to wherever the labor is cheaper, resulting in unemployment and social harm. But when a large part of the labor force is employed by the state, and a large part of industry is state owned, you can control your labor policy and you can avoid the flight to cheaper labor abroad. And through greater productivity, you can still compete and eventually outcompete those whose primary advantage is cheap labor.

Of course, private industry does not like the large upfront investments that are necessary to push up productivity - and to be fair, some of those investments should be state driven. For example, education. You need a highly trained and educated labor force - that can only happen through mass effort by the state.

Right now, because the state has so little direct economic power, we have a situation where labor and environmental costs are simply being avoided by private industry. Naturally, if you pay your workers less (including by outsourcing labor), and you produce in a country that has zero environmental controls, your costs will be smaller. The end result is tremendous pollution - see China - and deindustrialization in the U.S. combined with cries to lessen regulations and labor laws in our country "to compete". The truth is the U.S. cannot compete with China on labor costs, no matter how low you go, and pollution in China and elsewhere is now a global problem (btw. 40% of the air pollution in Los Angeles is blown over from China), polluted oceans threaten the whole world, not just the polluters.

So if you cannot compete on cheap labor - because it will always be cheaper somewhere else - you may as well stop demanding that your work force race to the bottom, since it's a race that will always be lost. You have only one way left - race to the top. Increase productivity by embracing technology - not rejecting it and hunkering down behind all sorts of barriers.

The greatest secret to a competitive economy is something rarely spoken of - quality of life. Where do people ultimately want to live? Do I want to live in China, where I can't see my outstretched hand, because the pollution is so bad, and my life is going to be cut by 15 years? Where my children are going to be sick almost every day? Where rates of cancer explode? Where there is little regulation and little faith in the integrity of the food and medication and everything else? Already, we see the first trickle of people coming back from China, or deciding not to go there, or cut their stay shorter. There is an upside to living in a clean environment - even if you have to pay more for it. And, as I argue, ultimately productivity will be the deciding factor - not cheap labor. I laugh when I read about the European and American captains of industry threatening to "leave the country" should their taxes be raised. Go where? To China? Somalia? Congo? Bon voyage! Once we implement similar tax regiments in most livable places, where are they going to go? They are welcome to leave, Koches and all. But if they're gonna stay, they'll pay their taxes, and grumble, and plot, and propagandize - and we'll keep raising their taxes until the divide of rich and poor goes down to some reasonable multiple, instead of the unfathomably astronomical one we have today - and will remove their political power to boot.

I am therefore optimistic about building an economy that is resilient to outside competition, which does not fear competition, which does not need to "hunker down" fearfully. It would be something forward looking, bold and dynamic, not in retreat and inward looking. We need a state-private economy partnership. And we do need the state to have a stake in the economy, because many global problems cannot be solved without that.

The problem is political. How do we get there from here - here being a place of complete domination by private capital that has achieved political control over almost all economies?
posted by VikingSword at 11:41 AM on December 2, 2013 [4 favorites]


> Society must be reorganized. We've gone through wrenching changes when we transitioned from an agricultural economy to
> the industrial revolution, and now we must take the next leap, except we must do it in much less time than we had in
> the agriculture --> industrial transformation.

"We" didn't decide to make the leap from agriculture to industry. It was just the ultimate outcome, over generations, of lots of people milling around and following their noses in an environment in which it generally paid to move from agriculture to industry more often it didn't.

Don't kid yourselves; that's all you've got now. That's how vast, tidal changes happen, and the only way they happen.
posted by jfuller at 12:06 PM on December 2, 2013 [1 favorite]


Don't kid yourselves; that's all you've got now. That's how vast, tidal changes happen, and the only way they happen.

Well, then, I think we're in trouble jfuller, because if the various ideas about technological capability following an exponential rate of increase are true, then it would likely be inevitable we'd eventually reach a point at which the rate of technological change would outstrip our ability to adapt our political systems and way of life to the rate of technological change. Even if we had political and social structures at our disposal designed to adapt to rapidly changing economic realities (which we don't; our political institutions in the US are structurally very conservative), we'd still eventually reach a point at which we couldn't keep up with the rate of technological change.
posted by saulgoodman at 2:28 PM on December 2, 2013


> inevitable we'd eventually reach a point at which the rate of technological change would outstrip our ability
> to adapt our political systems and way of life to the rate of technological change.

That's entirely possible, Saul, but among all the myriad we-are-so-fucked scenarios there are others that seem likely to get us (or many of us, or most of us) first. The one I bookmarked most recently is here (New Statesman, "How science is telling us all to revolt ".)

To have even a 50/50 chance of hitting the 2° target (which, they and many others warn, already involves facing an array of hugely damaging climate impacts), the industrialised countries need to start cutting their greenhouse-gas emissions by something like 10 per cent a year – and they need to start right now....

But Anderson and Bows go further, pointing out that this target cannot be met with the array of modest carbon pricing or green-tech solutions usually advocated by big green groups....

Even after the Soviet Union collapsed, reductions of this duration and depth did not happen (the former Soviet countries experienced average annual reductions of roughly 5 per cent over a period of ten years). They did not happen after Wall Street crashed in 2008 (wealthy countries experienced about a 7 per cent drop between 2008 and 2009, but their CO2 emissions rebounded with gusto in 2010 and emissions in China and India had continued to rise). Only in the immediate aftermath of the great market crash of 1929 did the United States, for instance, see emissions drop for several consecutive years by more than 10 per cent annually...

If we are to avoid that kind of carnage while meeting our science-based emissions targets, carbon reduction must be managed carefully through what Anderson and Bows describe as “radical and immediate de-growth strategies in the US, EU and other wealthy nations”.


Ten per cent de-growth per year, on purpose ("managed carefully") starting now. Or else. Now that's austerity! Prof. Krugman isn't gonna like this, Yogi.
posted by jfuller at 3:38 PM on December 2, 2013 [2 favorites]


jfuller: “The one I bookmarked most recently is here (New Statesman, "How science is telling us all to revolt ".)”
WARNING: Do not read this article unless there is at least 750ml of alcohol of not less than 80 proof in your house. Jesus wept.
posted by ob1quixote at 7:46 PM on December 2, 2013


Bottom line in my mind is that the more work is automated and the more wealth is concentrated, the less people have to spend, leading to falling demand as a consequence.

Smart companies will realize that they need their employees to be able to buy the stuff they make or markets and profits will simply disappear. Let the Wal-Marts of the world go under while the Costcos of the world flourish.
posted by UseyurBrain at 4:58 PM on December 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wonkbook: Washington has given up on growth
Low Wages Are Stalling America's Economy
posted by the man of twists and turns at 6:01 PM on December 8, 2013


Larry Summers, On Secular Stagnation
posted by the man of twists and turns at 4:47 AM on December 17, 2013


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