Saturday, August 24, 2013

What's news: Ed Miliband? John Kay? Mariana Mazzucato?

What's new, what's news? The Times (22 August) quotes a YouGov opinion poll in Prospect magazine telling of the latest dire news on Labour leader Ed Miliband's standing with the voters: They don't know what he stands for. This is the Nth media article in recent months of the same subject and it is getting tiresome. Meanwhile Ed M stays mum. As George Eaton points out this week (New Statesman) the coalition have granted the opposition thinking time by fixing the next election date to May 2015, so why disclose your plans early? The UK's variable election timetable normally gives the ruling party the advantage of a surprise election at a few weeks notice. 

But why does The Times need to quote another journal on such a regular old chestnut when there are some fundamentally more interesting stories around? For instance in the same Prospect issue Prof John Kay is reported at an LSE lecture recently in  Two cheers for the market which is bursting with intriguing topics, including: land ownership; capital raising; capitalism; markets; JM Keynes; Apple; rent-seeking; et al. One issue he raises is that the influence of the left has become 'homoeopathic socialism' as it so wary of nationalisation, at the very time when a good dose of bank nationalisation might well be the right thing to do to draw up a new routemap for the failed economy.

Another insight, but from the FT is Mariana Muzzucato (see previous Blog) which this week carries her article Why private innovation needs government help. She continues to bang the drum for recognition that taxpayers, through government, created the gameboard that Apple and Google are now playing on so successfully to their own private profit and minimal taxes. Muzzucato claims that these hi-tech industries and others, were founded on state innovation over many years, but now 'small state' pressure ignores this. To our long term detriment what is actually happening is parasitic rather than symbiotic, where the state could very well achieve a return for its investment if it faced these facts.  She adds to the current austerity debate by saying it is not so much government spending that matters per se but whether the spending adds to productivity and innovation.

Let's also add an further insight from Prof Richard Werner that crucial productive spending need not even be debt, because: 
 'Tax payers need to repay, service the interest and repay government bonds. .... But you could cut all that out if you had the government creating and allocating money through fiscal spending - government spending.'
(extract from YouTube:  Debt Free and Interest Free Money)

Which is the real news?

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