Month: December 2014
Capital in the Twenty-First Century
Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century is that rare phenomenon, an economics tome that flies off the shelves.
” . . . . .
The gist of Piketty’s book is simple. Returns to capital are rising faster than economies are growing. The wealthy are getting wealthier while everybody else is struggling. Inequality will widen to the point where it becomes unsustainable – both politically and economically – unless action is taken to redistribute income and wealth. Piketty favours a graduated wealth tax and 80% income tax for those on the highest salaries.
Lord (Adair) Turner, the former chairman of the Financial Services Authority, says Capital is “a remarkable piece of work”. Turner, who has name-checked Piketty in his recent lectures, added: “He is saying that we have a set of tendencies at work to which the offset has to be a degree of redistribution. I completely agree with him.”
Krugman, writing in the New York Review of Books, says Piketty’s work will “change both the way we think about society and the way we do economics”.
. . . . “
Progress and Poverty
Why was Henry George not successful?
Here you may find some interesting answers from a book written by
“Neoclassical economics is the idiom of most economic discourse
today. It is the paradigm that bends the twigs of young minds. Then
it confines the florescence of older ones, like chicken-wire shaping
a topiary. It took form about a hundred years ago, when Henry George and
his reform proposals were a clear and present political danger and challenge
to the landed and intellectual establishments of the world. Few people
realize to what degree the founders ofNeo-classical economics changed the
discipline for the express purpose of deflecting George and frustrating
future students seeking to follow his arguments. The strategem was
semantic: to destroy the very words in which he expressed himself. Simon
Patten expounded it succinctly. “Nothing pleases a …single taxer better
than … to use the well-known economic theories … [therefore] economic
doctrine must be recast” (Patten, 1908: 219; Collier, 1979: 270).’
George believed economists were recasting the discipline to refute him.
He states so, as though in the third person, in his posthumously published
book, The Science ofPoliticalEconomy(George, 1898:200-209). George’s
self-importance was immodest, it is true. However, immodesty may be
objectivity, as many great talents from Frank Lloyd Wright to Muhammed
Ali and Frank Sinatra have displayed. George had good reasons, which we
are to demonstrate. George’s view may even strike some as paranoid. That
was this writer’s first impression, many years ago. I have changed my view,
however, after learning more about the period, the literature, and later
To read on please follow this link:
I am very interested in finding out why there is so much resistance to applying the ideas that Henry George promoted in the 19th century.
The above publication seems to be giving some interesting links.
On the 10th of April 2014 I wrote the following in my blog:
You may have noticed that I googled a lot these past few days. It all had to do with where past civilisations and our civilisation are headed for.
The unequal distribution of wealth and privilege is examined. Progress as well as poverty, how can this be? THIS IS THE QUESTION.
In 1979 Agnes George de Mille, the granddaughter of Henry George, published this:
I found the above when I googled ‘Henry George‘. There are many more links to Henry George in Google!
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A Christmas Lunch
Today we were invited to a Christmas luncheon in Sydney. There was some lovely food and drinks. And good conversation with a lot of people. Here are some pictures of some of the people that we have known for many years.
There were salads and lots of prawns to eat and lovely sweets for desert. I did not think of taking pictures when the lunch started, but I took some photos towards the end.
We took a train back to Dapto. Peter suggested we could go for dinner the the German Club where perhaps they might have some meat rolls. He was lucky, they did have meat rolls with red cabbage and dumplings. I chose a deep fried Camenbert Cheese which was very tasty. Peter loved his meal very much too.
Martin Place, Sydney, 21st December 2014
The hostage crisis started on Monday, the 15th December and went on for 17 hours. All week there was a constant stream of people with flowers and expressions of sympathy. Today on Sunday more and more people came to Martin Place to pray and lay flowers. We experienced a very peaceful atmosphere. And we had the feeling that people took everything very much to heart.
Residents Christmas Party 2014
Some more Diary, December 2014
Soon it is going to be the fourth of Advent. A dear friend gave me this blue runner on the table just a few weeks ago and her daughter Amanda gave us some cute little puppets with Christmas cards a few years ago. These things came in a little bag which I kept for all these years with our Christmas things. I always loved these gifts and today I thought all this would make a good subject for Advent to take some pictures of!
Uta’s Diary, December 2014
Reflecting on our Monday Morning
Last Monday we happened to sleep in a bit. We are usually quite early risers. That we slept in was really something out of the ordinary. Peter was upset when he woke up so late. He had planned on being at the Medical Centre by 7,30 am so he could be booked in for his visit to the doctor who was due to arrive at 8 am. Since we did sleep for too long, he did not arrive at the centre in time. By the time he did get there, eight people had already booked in before him. I think I had a banana before we left. But Peter wanted to rush off. He did not want any coffee, and he did not even have time to eat a banana.
As I mentioned in my previous blog, we had time for some hot drinks at the guru Cafe while Peter was waiting for his turn to see his doctor. But we actually survived without any food till we had this lovely bit of fruit salad. The fruit salad was wonderful, very fresh and with different varieties of fruit in it.
Peter was in the end quite happy the way the morning had turned out for he did get good test results. He was very relieved about this. And I was happy that I finally made myself try on and buy something new to wear. On top of it I must say the day was a lucky day for me because everything I bought was reduced by 40% or more!
Uta’s Diary, December 2014
On Monday we were early in the Dapto Shopping Centre. Peter had to go across the road to the Medical Centre to get his test results. He booked in and found out there were already eight people in front of him to see this particular doctor that he wanted to see. So he had to wait for well over an hour till it was his turn. In the meantime he came back to the shopping centre where I was waiting. We decided we would spend some time in the guru Cafe that had just opened up.
Soon after Peter had left again to see his doctor I ventured towards some shops where some special sales were going on. One shop offered reductions of 40% and more! I bought several items and was surprised how little I had to pay in the end. I bought new swimmers, several tops and a long skirt. All this within less than an hour. I had time to spare for Peter was not back yet. I took more pictures. Eventually I bought myself a small container with fruit salad which turned out to be delicious.
When Peter finally returned he apologized for having taken so long. But I told him I had spent the time well and that it had been all right waiting for him. I was just happy when he told me that all the tests had turned out well. He does not need any more treatment. But he has to see the doctor again in the New Year. The doctor had said that his blood pressure had been a bit high, meaning that he might perhaps need some more medication.
I told Peter about the delicious fruit salad. I talked him into it buying some for himself too. Yes, he liked it! And before we went home, we did a bit more shopping in the fruit shop.
My knee had been playing up again and I was glad I had my walking stick with me.
berlioz1935April 10, 2014 at 9:41 am Edit #
Research and mathematical modelling has shown conclusively that unequal distribution of wealth has led to the downfall of civilisations. But the Rineharts of this world can not get enough. They never do. They think natural justice is for suckers.
auntyutaApril 10, 2014 at 10:03 am Edit #
This is a very interesting subject, Berlioz, isn’t it?
The question is, what is a “just” society?
I know that for instance Henry George was an eloquent speaker and writer, advocating for changes in society to achieve “social justice”. In the 1800s millions of people listened to what he had to say. To this day there are people who study him. Alas, nothing much has changed anywhere as far as social justice is concerned.
Here is a link to my diary on taxes: