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Friday, May 19, 2023

On Steve Keen & Friends Livestream

I will be on the Steve Keen & Friend Livestream tomorrow (May 20) at 12 noon Eastern Standard Time. (Link to the stream above.) There is no set topic, but I guess there will be a discussion of the state of macro theory.


  1. Great appearance yesterday with Keen and Friends. I will definitely get your books. I have a couple of questions.
    1. Given your practical knowledge of the money machine, do you accept the STAB (spending before tax and borrow) dynamic?
    2. Since settlement balances can't be used by the public but CBDCs can, do you think CBDCs would failitate MMT's sovereign money position?

    Thanks and best wishes.

    Joe Polito

    1. (This is Brian).
      1) I write about “spending first” in “Understanding Government Finance.” If we go back to “the beginning,” government needs to spend first. But once we are in steady state, there’s a cycle. I think the MMTers are directionally correct, but I think the situation is more complicated than primers suggest.
      2) I don’t think that unelected bureaucrats should be doing spending decisions, that’s Parliament’s prerogative. If the banking system is well regulated, there is no need to think about non-banks needing to hold the equivalent of reserve balances.

  2. I will definitely get - Understanding Government Finance, and your book on MMT. As for the complications. I think they are addressed from time to time, particularly in this paper by Wray and Tymoigne


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