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The Europe of Broken Dreams, Part 1: An introduction to the Modern Monetary System21st January 2013

Gazing across the Channel, Europe’s finances seem to have gone reasonably quiet. Too quiet. Over the past week the Germans announced that they want all their gold bars returned safely from Paris; the IMF announced that Greek funding gaps may be wider than ever; the Spanish Prime Minister made a speech, and David Cameron cancelled a speech. But this counts for quiet in an era when we have lost count of the number of crisis meetings that each tackle the immediate symptom, but not the...

Carousel Economics and the Trillion Dollar coin14th January 2013

I tend to get a little enthusiastic when discussing economics and the woeful systems and decisions applied to our world by our politicians and central bankers, or indeed by the bureaucrats who seem to pull their strings these days. My tenor is not helped by the mainstream media who often seem to consider that the value of pets doing something vaguely amusing in front of a camera is of greater merit than the financial security of our society. No wonder people seek amusement, as they...

Lemmings and the Cliff: The false obsession with GDP8th January 2013

What a start to 2013! In the United States days were extended to fit political need, so that those looking to “sustain growth” could rejoice in the half-baked fiscal fudge that’ll last for a couple of months at best. In the UK doomsters have proclaimed that weakness in the service sector will undoubtedly lead to a “triple-dip” recession. Just think how many months of joy the media will have speculating and almost celebrating if that comes to pass! Governments and established media...

The Hobbit: Tolkien the Economic Libertarian?31st December 2012

As thousands of us headed to the big screen this season, the top film has surely been The Hobbit – An Unexpected Journey. Critics tell us much about the filming in 48 frames per second, but surely we are better focusing on the story and the real thinking behind it. Over an excellent lunch before Christmas[1], it was suggested to me that JRR Tolkien, writer of The Hobbit and it’s masterly sequel Lord of the Rings, is considered by many to be a Libertarian. For one committed to the free...

A message of hope, strategy and economics21st December 2012

Has it ended? ... The World? ... Would we even know if it happened? The fun over the Mayan Calendar, which actually just ran out of space rather than predicting the end of the world, shows how we love bad news. Bad news sells, yet the progress of our species is down to the individual pursuit of progress and positivity. Even when times are bad most people are moving forward, as the competitive free market which best reflects our humanity enables us firstly to survive and then for our...

Welcome to Robert’s FYI blog21st November 2012

Thank-you for your interest in the FYI website and for finding this opening blog. Writing things down helps to achieve a balanced perspective, and in particular helps me to vent my frustrations with the current woeful lack of real economic thought. No trend lasts forever, and despite howls to the contrary many people did see the 2008 downturn coming; it was the establishment of politicians, bureaucrats and central bankers who believed their own fluff and nonsense, and the coterie of...

Coming soon21st November 2012

More business articles are underway. If you have a topic that you would like covered, please get in...

The day that HM Treasury showed us the future11th November 2012

Nothing but outrage should have greeted the news on Friday that interest on Bank of England owned gilts will be returned to HM Treasury to reduce the annual Government deficit. What we got instead from most media was a whimper. The news was not unexpected, but it starts our journey on the slippery slope of monetizing debt that will undoubtedly follow. This may in time become known as "The Road to Perdition." As the populace at large go about their day-to-day activities, most will...