MMT is an amazing sleight of hand — and besides its contradictions and prima facie falsehoods (which I’ll get into) it’s PRECISELY the theory of monetary governance you would come up with to put your elbow on the scale with enough force to allow the state’s fiscal support for endless war, spying, imprisonment and hegemony domestically and abroad.
The fact that the political class has somehow not given attention to other pet causes like universal healthcare is not just curious, it’s because that’s not why they exist. Look at this latest budget to increase defense spending, and the subsequent house vote to reduce it by 10% to fund other projects. The vote to increase was bipartisan. The vote against the decrease was bipartisan. Don’t pretend like there’s a lack of political will to spend trillions that don’t exist: there’s plenty of will!
The beneficiaries of MMT are, in no particular order: defense contractors, politicians, banks, and the 1/10th of the 1% who feed first at the trough of easy money policy. The prime driver of wealth disparity is not tax policy or direct cronyism, but the mechanisms of MMT that enrich the rich while constantly dragging down the poor and (dwindling) middle class’s wages.
The contradictions in MMT are enough to make any rational person start to question their own sanity: taxes give money value? So… places with high taxes have more valuable currency? Hmmm… no. A country that issues its own debt and currency can never go bankrupt? It depends on what you mean by bankrupt. If I promise to pay you 1 pound of gold in ten years, but then I change the definition of “pound” to legally mean “1/2 pound” then you might argue that I haven’t defaulted. But changing the rules to pay me back less than you promised is a kind of default. Devaluing the currency in the real world is a default!
More importantly, there’s this suspension of disbelief in the MMT crowd that any amount of monetary rejiggering can not result in a tumbling of the currency. Currencies are not a permanent fixture like the sun and moon. They disappear, default, go under, lose their credibility, etc. all the time. There’s no reason (besides undying credulity and a religious MMT fervor) to believe that the dollar is forever. The dollar is a figment of our collective imagination. As more people start to notice that our monetary governance is a constant rip-off with obvious beneficiaries, you can bet that such a figment will (continue to) evaporate.
Watch gold. Watch cryptos. They’re on the move, and it’s precisely because MMT is a bucket of nothing supported by central bankers and their patronizing cronies. If the dollar was a sound currency, we wouldn’t see other monetary options in circulation at all, let alone soaring in price.