Goofy Prescription to Forestall the New Great Depression
Richard Duncan, author of "The New Depression," appeared on CNBC's Squawk Box Europe on Monday to discuss what he calls "creditism" and the prospects of a new Great Depression.
What Duncan advices be done to prevent or at least forestall a new Great Depression appears to come from goofy Paul Krugman's playbook. And since Krugman's thinking comes from liberal think tanks and the Democratic National Committee, well, that might give us an insight into Duncan's reasoning.
Duncan says that a new depression would be so severe that it would threaten civilization. Mad Max, here we come?
Duncan's solutions to prevent a depression are, using his own word, "radical." Duncan wants to fend off a civilization-destroying depression by encouraging governments to borrow more trillions of dollars. The economist and author also wants corporatism, it seems.
This from the CNBC report:
Duncan argues that governments in the developed world should borrow "massive" amounts of money at the current low interest rates to invest in new technologies like renewable energy and genetic engineering.
"Renewable energy" and "invest," as in Uncle Sam pouring borrowed money into green outfits... smells suspiciously like a new scheme to spawn dozens of Solyndras.
Why not strip needless regulatory and tax burdens from the nation's conventional energy sector? Gas, coal, and oil are abundant on and off America's shores. It's government that prevents a major resurgence of America's energy industries.
But conventional energy isn't sexy or dreamy enough, and the left needs to feed it's mindless ideological bias against "big" oil, "dirty" coal, and "polluting" gas fracking. So much for expanding energy businesses, creating hundreds of thousands of jobs, and, not incidentally, increasing tax revenues to government.
In the video of the interview that accompanies the CNBC report, Duncan suggests that Washington could develop nanotechnology and a cancer vaccine that it could sell to help reduce its indebtedness.
But why shouldn't pharmaceutical companies be unshackled to develop a cancer vaccine -- if some such is doable? Otherwise, it sounds like a Washington financed pie-in-the-sky pump-priming scheme -- or what used to be called a boondoggle.
Why would government get into the business of selling cancer vaccines, anyway? Government doesn't do business very well, does it? Need we recount all the waste and fraud through the decades that Washington produces at taxpayer expense?
But boondoggles and waste won't deter Richard Duncan. Get this sparking gem from Duncan the Doomsayer:
"Even if this is wasted [all the trillions of dollars borrowed by Uncle Sam], at least we could enjoy this civilization for another ten years before it collapses," he said.
That's right, in true post-modern adolescent style, let's plow trillions of dollars of "borrowed" (printed?) money into (Fill in the blank) just to enjoy the ride for another decade. Our kids and their kids and those kids' kids be damned. We're going on one helluva credit card binge, baby!
This isn't to gainsay the threat that huge and mounting indebtedness poses to the U.S. and nations across the globe. But the solution isn't more of the hair-of-the-dog that bit us; in other words, adding enormous debt atop enormous debt.
If Richard Duncan and his ilk want truly radical solutions, then governments need to be dramatically reduced and decentralized, spending needs to be chopped, and individuals and free enterprise needs to be set loose. The powerful engines of individual and entrepreneurial creativity and know-how -- tempered by risk, disciplined by failure, and rewarded by success - are the means of lifting the world from its current mess.
Still, the transition back to liberty-dominant societies won't be easy. As the cliché goes, "No pain, no gain."
But gaining through the pain of achieving more freedom is the way the U.S. and others need to trend -to save civilization, that is.