Skip to main content

How stimulative has fiscal policy been?

Not much. Particularly after the initial stimulus spending came to a halt, as you can see in the figure below.
In part this is the result of GOP obstructionism, but also follows Obama's early move to emphasize a balanced approach to the deficit and debt 'problem,' meaning higher taxes and lower spending. Now, it seems, the consensus is that the shutdown will fail, but that does NOT mean that there is more stimulus in the pipeline. So we'll move to the next menace soon, the debt ceiling. Again.


  1. It is an adolescent fantasy that money can be had free of labor.

    The recent round of QE-infinity has pumped over a trillion dollars into the economy. The result? As you suggest, almost negligible growth in the economy (and negative real growth, when discounting government spending).

    It's time for people to start asking what the real motive is behind money-printing. The wealth distribution gap is at an all time high after a century of monetarism and big government.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

What is the 'Classical Dichotomy'?

A few brief comments on Brexit and the postmortem of the European Union

Another end of the world is possible
There will be a lot of postmortems for the European Union (EU) after Brexit. Many will suggest that this was a victory against the neoliberal policies of the European Union. See, for example, the first three paragraphs of Paul Mason's column here. And it is true, large contingents of working class people, that have suffered with 'free-market' economics, voted for leaving the union. The union, rightly or wrongly, has been seen as undemocratic and responsible for the economics woes of Europe.

The problem is that while it is true that the EU leaders have been part of the problem and have pursued the neoliberal policies within the framework of the union, sometimes with treaties like the Fiscal Compact, it is far from clear that Brexit and the possible demise of the union, if the fever spreads to France, Germany and other countries with their populations demanding their own referenda, will lead to the abandonment of neoliberal policies. Aust…

A brief note on Venezuela and the turn to the right in Latin America

So besides the coup in Brazil (which was all but confirmed by the last revelations, if you had any doubts), and the electoral victory of Macri in Argentina, the crisis in Venezuela is reaching a critical level, and it would not be surprising if the Maduro administration is recalled, even though right now the referendum is not scheduled yet.

The economy in Venezuela has collapsed (GDP has fallen by about 14% or so in the last two years), inflation has accelerated (to three digit levels; 450% or so according to the IMF), there are shortages of essential goods, recurrent energy blackouts, and all of these aggravated by persistent violence. Contrary to what the press suggests, these events are not new or specific to left of center governments. Similar events occurred in the late 1980s, in the infamous Caracazo, when the fall in oil prices caused an external crisis, inflation, and food shortages, which eventually, after the announcement of a neoliberal economic package that included the i…