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  • Study explores media coverage of pipeline controversies December 14, 2018
    Supporters of fossil fuel infrastructure projects position themselves as friends of working people, framing climate action as antithetical to the more immediately pressing need to protect oil and gas workers’ livelihoods. And as the latest report from the CCPA-BC and Corporate Mapping Project confirms, this framing has become dominant across the media landscape. Focusing on pipeline […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Study highlights ‘uncomfortable truth’ about racism in the job market December 12, 2018
    "Racialized workers in Ontario are significantly more likely to be concentrated in low-wage jobs and face persistent unemployment and earnings gaps compared to white employees — pointing to the “uncomfortable truth” about racism in the job market, according to a new study." Read the Toronto Star's coverage of our updated colour-coded labour market report, released […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Uploading the subway will not help Toronto commuters December 12, 2018
    The Ontario government is planning to upload Toronto’s subway, claiming it will allow for the rapid expansion of better public transit across the GTHA, but that’s highly doubtful. Why? Because Minister of Transportation Jeff Yurek’s emphasis on public-private partnerships and a market-driven approach suggests privatization is the cornerstone of the province’s plan. Will dismembering the […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • 2018 State of the Inner City Report: Green Light Go...Improving Transportation Equity December 7, 2018
    Getting to doctors appointments, going to school, to work, attending social engagments, picking up groceries and even going to the beach should all affordable and accessible.  Check out Ellen Smirl's reserach on transportation equity in Winnipeg in this year's State of the Inner City Report!
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Inclusionary housing in a slow-growth city like Winnipeg December 3, 2018
    In Winnipeg, there is a need for more affordable housing, as 21 percent of households (64,065 households) are living in unaffordable housing--according to CMHC's definition of spending more than 30 percent of income on shelter.  This report examines to case studies in two American cities and how their experience could help shape an Inclusionary Housing […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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Beating Back the Ghosts: Be Gone Appeals to Reinhart and Rogoff Authority. Welcome the Triumph of Reason.

They’ve haunted me.  Incessantly.  The ghosts of Reinhart and Rogoff.  Their research here, there, everywhere.

Bank of Canada speeches? Yes.  Finance Department talking points? Check. House of Commons debates? Yup.  Globe editorials? Ditto.  Discussions with fellow progressives? Sadly, yes.

Results? Arguments conjured in their name.  Reason decapitated.  Modern Monetary Theorists (MMT) banished to the netherworld of cranks.

But we told you so. We told you so**:

  • Randy Wray, writing a little more than a year ago, called them out, saying: “One hopes that the database they have assembled might provide more detail. We have tried contacting both authors to access the database, but so far with no response
  • Bill Mitchell: pointing to the inconvenient truth of the underlying analysis and its emphasis on external (not domestic) debt.  And then the countless exaggerations that followed by the authors and their propagandists.
  • Me, in private, countless times running through the arguments to no avail. Authority wins. Fear of trespassing on the sacred convention of balanced budgets wins.  Fear of the narrative wins.

For a nice roundup of what I speak, cryptically because I dare not tempt the gods, please check out the following.  Hopefully, this will suffice for the exorcism:



** I use we in the royal we sense not to mean me but the (far far far) more prolific MMT writers who I greatly admire.


Enjoy and share:


Comment from Larry Kazdan
Time: April 17, 2013, 4:25 pm

Letter in Ottawa Sun

Re: ANTHONY FUREY, Stimulus packages become new norm, March 23rd, 2013

There’s a good reason stimulus packages are becoming the new norm. Households are indebted so can’t spend; businesses are sitting on cash because of the bleak economic outlook, and our country has a trade deficit. When this conjunction happens, purchasing power is drained from the economy, and if the government does not make up the difference, our economy goes into a downward spiral. This is what is happening to certain countries in the Eurozone which does not have mandatory fiscal transfers from rich regions to poor regions as we have in Canada. Anthony Furey thinks it unfortunate that government takes ameliorative action, but does he really want Canada to be the next Greece?

Larry Kazdan,
620 E. 23 Ave.,
Vancouver, B.C.
(604) 874-9982


Australian economist Bill Mitchell explains:

At last count there were two broad macroeconomic sectors – the government and the non-government. The non-government sector can be decomposed into the private domestic sector and the external sector. The private domestic sector can be further decomposed into households who consume and firms who invest (in productive capital).

Macroeconomics is easy – thats it! 2 broad spending sectors and then some more detail.

What do we know about these sectors in the US?

1. Households are not spending enough on consumption – and why should they given they have to reduce their unsustainable debt levels and are saving to generate buffers just in case they are next to join the unemployment queue.

2. Business firms are not spending enough on investment – and why should they given they have to reduce their unsustainable debt levels and that household spending is not pushing production levels beyond existing capacity (by a long margin).

3. The external sector is deteriorating – that is, spending is contracting because the Europeans and the Brits are killing growth in their economies.

How many more spending sectors are left in the US?

The most basic macroeconomic rule – spending equals income. When someone spends another gains income. When a sector increases spending, other sectors enjoy the rise in income.

So if all these non-government sector spenders are being cautious and the private domestic sector is attempting to save overall – and – the world economy is not going to drive US exports very hard – where is the deficit spending going to come from to drive growth?

There is only one source – government budget deficits.

More of A veritable pot pourri of lies, deception and self-serving bluster at

Comment from Thomas Bergbusch
Time: April 17, 2013, 10:35 pm

As always, great stuff Arun.

Just adding related links:

Mario Seccareccia via Mosler Economics:

Bill Mitchell:

Lars Syll:

Media Maters : Major Errors Undermine Key Argument For Austerity Frequently Cited By Media.

Comment from circuit
Time: April 23, 2013, 6:11 pm

Nice post, Arun. I felt the same way about R-R. Their name is everywhere — this duo were even quoted by economists I found pretty decent.

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