The shorter Willy Hutton this week

Japan\’s fucked so we should copy them.

11 thoughts on “The shorter Willy Hutton this week”

  1. Always a treat to hear back from Will’s annual trip to Japan. Amazing how he only ever seems to hear views that back up his existing prejudices.

    I wonder how he’d feel if a Japanese journalist came over to the UK, spent a day with the CBI and then visited some private equity firms and FTSE 100 multinationals and wrote that Japan must copy the UK’s low tax, low regulation neoliberal economy ?

  2. Amazing how he only ever seems to hear views that back up his existing prejudices.

    I wonder how he’d feel if a Japanese journalist came over to the UK …

    He’d never hear about it. It simply wouldn’t be reported in media he reads or talked about in circles that he patronises.

    One of his serfs might suggest “Have you seen this latest neo-liberal, neo-con economics nonsense from Japan, your Worshipfulness?” To which he might condescend to remind aforesaid serf that the purity of his vision of socialist utopia must not be marred by any contact with the products of less refined intelligences.

  3. I mean that article has to be one of the most deranged I have ever seen, and coming from the Observer/Guardian stable that is some achievement. Does anyone take this guy seriously? Perhaps he’d care to look at Japanese policies on law and order and immigration and draw conclusions from there? I’d love for an article proposing stricter controls on foreigners coming in or the abolition of trial by jury from Hutton’s prolific pen!

  4. The key is to look what Hutton is advocating and what the real examples are – printing money on the lines of the Weimar Republic and Zimbabwe and Russia in the early-/mid-90s. This isn’t really Japanese policy, where they are trying to avoid deflation caused by an overvalued exchange rate; Turner wants to inflate away debt, which will destroy working-class savings but not those of the rich with investments in property and equities (and his inflation-proofed pension).

  5. @Shinsei1967:

    “Japan must copy the UK’s low tax, low regulation neo-liberal economy ?”

    This is a joke right? There is no way that the UK is low tax by any means and low regulation?

    I’m assuming this throw-away line was meant as a joke.

  6. The claim by John 77 that “Turner wants to inflate away debt..” is very silly. The money printing that Turner advocates comes to the same thing a fiscal stimulus followed by QE as pointed out by Simon Wren-Lewis here:

    http://mainlymacro.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/what-is-attraction-of-helicopter-money.html

    Fiscal stimulus followed by QE is exactly what we’ve done over the last few years and it hasn’t proved wildly inflationary. The amount of inflation caused by a stimulatory measure does not depend on the EXACT TYPE of stimulatory measure taken: it depends on how far it’s taken.

    Turner’s money printing is actually old hat. Keynes advocated a “print and spend” policy as an alternative to “borrow and spend”, though he kept fairly quiet about the former. I suspect that was because he knew he was surrounded by economic illiterates who foam at the mouth when the words “print” and “money” appear in the same sentence. Not much has changed there.

  7. WH: Most of us, including many bankers, now agree that the last 25 years have been a dreadful mistake.

    I stopped taking the article seriously at that point. Not least because that puts the high point of the last gilded age in, erm, 1988. Height of Thatcherism, two years after the Big Bang. I can think of quite a few people who might agree with that, but none of them is Willy Hutton.

  8. If Ralph Musgrave actually bothered to read the blog that he cites, he would learn that Professor Wren-Lewis points out that Turner’s plan would increase future inflation.
    So just *who* is very silly?

  9. “Fiscal stimulus followed by QE is exactly what we’ve done over the last few years and it hasn’t proved wildly inflationary.”

    So long as you don’t include the costs of things people actually buy, like, say, petrol or food, or take account of the decline in size or quality of the things they buy, such as the perpetually shrinking portion sizes or the new fad for horse-meat lasagne in place of beef.

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