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May 26, 2018 | Blackstone, BlackRock or a Public Bank? Putting California’s Funds to Work

California has over $700 billion parked in private banks earning minimal interest, private equity funds that contributed to the affordable housing crisis, or shadow banks of the sort that caused the banking collapse of 2008. These funds, or some of them, could be transferred to an infrastructure bank that generated credit for the state – […]

April 26, 2018 | Fox in the Hen House: Why Interest Rates Are Rising

The Fed is aggressively raising interest rates, although inflation is contained, private debt is already at 150% of GDP, and rising variable rates could push borrowers into insolvency. So what is driving the Fed’s push to “tighten”? On March 31st the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate for the sixth time in 3 years and […]

April 7, 2018 | The Bayer-Monsanto Merger Is Bad News for the Planet

Bayer and Monsanto have a long history of collusion to poison the ecosystem for profit. The Trump administration should veto their merger not just to protect competitors but to ensure human and planetary survival. Two new studies from Europe have found that the number of farm birds in France has crashed by a third in just […]

March 19, 2018 | The War on the Post Office

The US Postal Service, under attack from a manufactured crisis designed to force its privatization, needs a new source of funding to survive. Postal banking could fill that need. The US banking establishment has been at war with the post office since at least 1910, when the Postal Savings Bank Act established a public savings […]

March 3, 2018 | Funding Infrastructure: Why China Is Running Circles Around America

“One Belt, One Road,” China’s $1 trillion infrastructure initiative, is a massive undertaking of highways, pipelines, transmission lines, ports, power stations, fiber optics, and railroads connecting China to Central Asia, Europe and Africa. According to Dan Slane, a former advisor in President Trump’s transition team, “It is the largest infrastructure project initiated by one nation […]

January 25, 2018 | How Uncle Sam Launders Marijuana Money

n a blatant example of “do as I say, not as I do,” the US government is profiting handsomely by accepting marijuana cash in the payment of taxes while imposing huge penalties on banks for accepting it as deposits. Onerous reporting requirements are driving small local banks to sell out to Wall Street. Congress needs […]

January 6, 2018 | Student Debt Slavery II: Time to Level the Playing Field

This is the second in a two-part article on the debt burden America’s students face. Read Part 1 here. The lending business is heavily stacked against student borrowers. Bigger players can borrow for almost nothing, and if their investments don’t work out, they can put their corporate shells through bankruptcy and walk away. Not so with […]

December 29, 2017 | Student Debt Slavery: Bankrolling Financiers on the Backs of the Young

Higher education has been financialized, transformed from a public service into a lucrative cash cow for private investors. The advantages of slavery by debt over “chattel” slavery – ownership of humans as a property right – were set out in an infamous document called the Hazard Circular, reportedly circulated by British banking interests among their American banking counterparts during the American Civil […]

November 6, 2017 | The Public Bank Option – Safer, Local and Half the Cost

Phil Murphy, a former banker with a double-digit lead in New Jersey’s race for governor, has made a state-owned bank a centerpiece of his platform. If he wins on November 7, the nation’s second state-owned bank in a century could follow.    A UK study published on October 27, 2017 reported that the majority of […]

November 1, 2017 | Regulation Is Killing Community Banks – Public Banks Can Revive Them

Crushing regulations are driving small banks to sell out to the megabanks, a consolidation process that appears to be intentional. Publicly-owned banks can help avoid that trend and keep credit flowing in local economies. At his confirmation hearing in January 2017, Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin said, “regulation is killing community banks.” If the process is not […]

October 15, 2017 | How to Wipe Out Puerto Rico’s Debt Without Hurting Bondholders

During his visit to hurricane-stricken Puerto Rico, President Donald Trump shocked the bond market when he told Geraldo Rivera of Fox News that he was going to wipe out the island’s bond debt. He said on October 3rd: You know they owe a lot of money to your friends on Wall Street. We’re gonna have to wipe […]

October 6, 2017 | How to Fund a Universal Basic Income Without Increasing Taxes or Inflation

The policy of guaranteeing every citizen a universal basic income is gaining support around the world, as automation increasingly makes jobs obsolete. But can it be funded without raising taxes or triggering hyperinflation? In a panel I was on at the NexusEarth cryptocurrency conference in Aspen September 21-23rd, most participants said no. This is my […]

July 24, 2017 | Saving Illinois: Getting More Bang for the State’s Bucks

llinois is teetering on bankruptcy and other states are not far behind, largely due to unfunded pension liabilities; but there are solutions. The Federal Reserve could do a round of “QE for Munis.” Or the state could turn its sizable pension fund into a self-sustaining public bank.  Illinois is insolvent, unable to pay its bills. According […]

June 30, 2017 | Sovereign Debt Jubilee, Japanese-Style

Japan has found a way to write off nearly half its national debt without creating inflation. We could do that too. Let’s face it. There is no way the US government is ever going to pay back a $20 trillion federal debt. The taxpayers will just continue to pay interest on it, year after year. […]

June 14, 2017 | Dear Mr. President, Be Careful What You Wish for: Higher Interest Rates Will Kill the Recovery

Higher interest rates will triple the interest on the federal debt to $830 billion annually by 2026, will hurt workers and young voters, and could bankrupt over 20% of US corporations, according to the IMF. The move is not necessary to counteract inflation and shows that the Fed is operating from the wrong model. Responding […]

May 20, 2017 | If China Can Fund infrastructure with Its Own Credit, So Can We

May 15th-19th has been designated “National Infrastructure Week” by the US Chambers of Commerce, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), and over 150 affiliates. Their message: “It’s time to rebuild.” Ever since ASCE began issuing its “National Infrastructure Report Card” in 1998, the nation has gotten a dismal grade of D or D+. In […]

April 15, 2017 | What a State-Owned Bank Can Do for New Jersey

Phil Murphy, the leading Democratic candidate for governor of New Jersey, has made a state-owned bank a centerpiece of his campaign. He says the New Jersey bank would “take money out of Wall Street and put it to work for New Jersey – creating jobs and growing the economy [by] using state deposits to finance […]

March 18, 2017 | “Ryancare” Dead on Arrival: Can We Please Now Try Single Payer?

The Canadian plan also helps Canadians live longer and healthier than Americans. . . . We need, as a nation, to reexamine the single-payer plan, as many individual states are doing.   — Donald Trump, The America We Deserve (2000) The new American Health Care Act has been unveiled, and critics are calling it more […]

January 28, 2017 | How to Cut Infrastructure Costs in Half

Americans could save $1 trillion over 10 years by financing infrastructure through publicly-owned banks like the one that has long been operating in North Dakota. President Donald Trump has promised to rebuild America’s airports, bridges, tunnels, roads and other infrastructure, something both Democrats and Republicans agree should be done. The country needs a full $3 […]

December 24, 2016 | The Italian Banking Crisis: No Free Lunch – Or Is There?

It has been called “a bigger risk than Brexit”– the Italian banking crisis that could take down the eurozone. Handwringing officials say “there is no free lunch” and “no magic bullet.” But UK Prof. Richard Werner says the magic bullet is just being ignored.  On December 4, 2016, Italian voters rejected a referendum to amend […]

December 11, 2016 | “We’ll Look at Everything”: More Thoughts on Trump’s $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan

To stimulate the economy, create new jobs and generate new GDP requires an injection of new money. Borrowing from the bond markets or off-balance-sheet in public/private partnerships won’t do it. If Congress won’t issue money directly, it should borrow from banks, which create money on their books when they make loans. The Trump agenda, it […]

November 16, 2016 | Trump’s $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan: Lincoln Had a Bolder Solution

Donald Trump was an outsider who boldly stormed the citadel of Washington DC and won. He has promised real change, but his infrastructure plan appears to be just more of the same – privatizing public assets and delivering unearned profits to investors at the expense of the people. He needs to try something new; and […]

October 22, 2016 | Prop. 51 Versus a State-Owned Bank: How California Can Save $10 Billion on a $9 Billion Loan

School districts are notoriously short of funding – so short that some California districts have succumbed to Capital Appreciation Bonds that will cost taxpayers as much is 10 to 15 times principal by the time they are paid off. By comparison, California’s Prop. 51, the school bond proposal currently on the ballot, looks like a […]

September 17, 2016 | Central Bank Digital Currencies: A Revolution in Banking?

Several central banks, including the Bank of England, the People’s Bank of China, the Bank of Canada and the Federal Reserve, are exploring the concept of issuing their own digital currencies, using the blockchain technology developed for Bitcoin. Skeptical commentators suspect that their primary goal is to eliminate cash, setting us up for negative interest […]

August 4, 2016 | Can Jill Carry Bernie’s Baton? A Look at the Green Candidate’s Radical Funding Solution

  Bernie Sanders supporters are flocking to Jill Stein, the presumptive Green Party presidential candidate, with donations to her campaign exploding nearly 1000% after he endorsed Hillary Clinton. Stein salutes Sanders for the progressive populist movement he began and says it is up to her to carry the baton. Can she do it? Critics say her […]

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