Who’s Afraid of MMT? by James K Galbraith

It is not surprising that current and retired central bankers feel threatened by modern monetary theory. With deep roots in the Keynesian tradition and an unwavering commitment to full employment, MMT demonstrates that good economics and sound politics need not be cloaked in obscurantist babble.

AUSTIN – As anyone who’s ever been responsible for the legal oversight of central bankers knows, they don’t like having their authority questioned. Above all, they will defend their mysticism – that magical aura that hovers over their words, shrouding a muddy mix of banality and nonsense in a haze of power and jargon.

This makes it great fun torturing central bankers. John Maynard Keynes famously tormented Montagu Norman, the Governor of the Bank of England (BOE) from 1920 to 1944. Wright Patman and Henry Reuss, two US Congressmen who chaired the House Banking Committee in the 1970s, did the same to Arthur Burns, Chairman of the US Federal Reserve. I know Reuss enjoyed it; I helped him then.

Today, the voices of modern monetary theory disturb the sleep not only of current central bankers, but even of those who have retired from the role. They sneak through the corridors like Lady Macbeth, shouting “Out damn place!”

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