Entries by Keith Weiner

Open Letter to Steve Keen

26/04/12 Keith Weiner Dear Professor Keen, I am a monetary scientist and a fan of some of your work. I admire the courage it took for you to call the Australian housing crisis as early as you did, and to make a bet that you would be right. But I came across this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=aqY_DYtp60s#), […]

Irredeemable Paper Money, Feature #451

I am writing this, having just returned from the fourth course at the New Austrian School of Economics, in Munich. The single biggest theme was the rate of interest and its linkage to prices. Kondratieff, among several others, have observed that rising prices lead to rising interest rates and vice versa. And the opposite case […]

The Loan: An Exchange of Wealth for Income

As the title of this essay suggests, a loan is an exchange of wealth for income. Like everything else in a free market (imagine happier days of yore), it is a voluntary trade. Contrary to the endemic language of victimization, both parties regard themselves as gaining thereby, or else they would not enter into the […]

A Politically Incorrect Look at Marginal Tax Rates

In my last piece, The Laffer Curve and Austrian Economics, I argued that the “Laffer Maxima” moves depending on where the economy is in the boom-bust credit cycle. I used an example of a marginal restaurant business in the bust phase, which fails when the income tax rate on the people who live nearby rises […]

Inflation: an Expansion of Counterfeit Credit

The Keynesians and Monetarists have fooled people with a clever sleight of hand. They have convinced people to look at prices (especially consumer prices) to understand what’s happening in the monetary system. Anyone who has ever been at a magic act performance is familiar with how sleight of hand often works. With a huge flourish […]

The Laffer Curve And Austrian School Economics

Jude Wanniski, a writer for the Wall Street Journal, coined the term “Laffer Curve” after a concept promoted by economist Art Laffer.Laffer himself says the idea goes back to the 14th century The idea is that if one wants to maximize the government’s tax revenue, there is an optimal tax rate. (Ignore for the moment […]

Broken Hedges

Peter Tchir wrote a piece yesterday describing yet another hole in the banks’ balance sheets: I am not sure I fully understand it, but to me it looks something like this: A bank has a duration mismatch. Its funding is short-term, which means it must be rolled over frequently. This subjects the bank to the […]

Capitalism: Death By A Thousand Cuts

Capitalism died when they decided to subsidize railroads for the sake of national prestige in the mid 19th century. Capitalism died when, to compensate for the consequences of subsidized railroads, they passed anti-trust laws in 1890, under which it is illegal to have lower prices, the same prices, and higher prices than one’s competitors. Capitalism […]

Why Can’t We All Just Net Along

Zero Hedge posted an article that asks an interesting question. Every European country owes money to other European countries. This creates a web of cross-linked debt. Instead of each country laboring under the full nominal amount, why don’t they just cooperate and cancel out everything but the net debt? This remainder would be very manageable […]