Time to consider a different approach to economic management

I realise that the Coalition, being from the right side of the political divide, are supposed to know something about how to run an economy, but I fear the evidence is very thin on the ground. And I know the RBA is supposed to be arm’s length from actual policy determined, but I have a feeling the PM and his economic ministers are absolutely onside with this: Rates could fall as low as 0.5% amid warnings of GFC-like slowdown.

Incompetent doesn’t even get near it. Incoherent and ignorant comes closer. Peter Costello was blessed with Glenn Stevens. Now we have this:

Official interest rates could be slashed to just 0.5 per cent to deal with an economy growing at its slowest since the depths of the Global Financial Crisis, markets and economists have warned as investors bet the economy needs more financial support.

Economists at JP Morgan on Wednesday became the first to predict the Reserve Bank of Australia will eventually take the cash rate to 0.5 per cent in a bid to protect the national jobs market and drive growth.

I am not going to try to explain the stupidity of this kind of policy in a blog post. So I will only make a couple of suggestions to our new government. First, talk to Peter Costello. I know, he’s from a different planet and what would he know about running an economy? However, he did set up conditions for a decade long era of extraordinary growth until we hit the GFC at the same time that Kevin Rudd was our PM. If you want to understand why we are now dealing with “an economy growing at its slowest since the depths of the Global Financial Crisis” you have to understand why public spending and low interest rates cannot and will not provide an economy with momentum of any kind.

The second suggestion is that someone provide the Treasurer with a copy of my book: Free Market Economics. It’s now in its third edition, but as a reminder of its message, the second edition of the book was launched by Peter Costello. This is what the book is about.

Key Features include:

* analysis derived from the theories of pre-Keynesian classical economists, as this is the only source available today that explains the classical pre-Keynesian theory of the business cycle
* a focus on the entrepreneur as the driving force in economic activity rather than on anonymous `forces’ as found in most economic theory today
* introduces a powerful though simplified model to explain the difference between modern theory of recession and classical theory of the business cycle
* great emphasis is placed on the consequences of decision making under uncertainty
* offers an introductory understanding, accessible to the non-specialist reader.

The aim of this book is to redirect the attention of economists and policy makers towards the economic theories that prevailed in earlier times. Their problems were little different from ours but their way of understanding the operation of an economy and dealing with those problems was completely different.

Free Market Economics, Third Edition will help students and general readers understand classical economic theory, written by someone who believes that this now-discarded approach to economic thought was superior to what is found in most of our textbooks today.

If you actually believe that lower interest rates will promote economic growth, read the last two chapters to find out the harm that this kind of approach is guaranteed to cause. It is the only anti-Keynesian textbook on the market. After a decade of Keynesian failures, isn’t it time to consider something else?

WHERE TO BUY FREE MARKET ECONOMICS: I have had a request, for which I am very grateful, about where to find a copy of Free Market Economics, and the one certain place is from the publisher, Edward Elgar.

The book is also not very expensive so far as textbooks tend to go. It was never my intention to turn publishing into a money-making project – which I have truly succeeded at – and the price of the book has been kept as low as possible from the start. In this I was assisted by the publisher so that my text became the first publication of theirs that was published from the start in both a hardback and a cheaper paperback edition. No one ever in my memory ever bought the hardback edition, but what I also found interesting was that no one also ever asked the author to sign their copy of the book.

1 thought on “Time to consider a different approach to economic management

  1. Hi Steve

    Long time subscriber to your posts, always find them of great interest and I thank you for taking the time to create and update your blog.

    Even though I’m a muso something in this post made me want to check out your book.:). Thought you might want to update the link to your book as Booktopia says your book is not available. I did see it on Amazon Au.

    Cheers Brett Rosenberg

    Sent from your iPad


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