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Warrren Mosler in CT

Hartford Courant gives some coverage to the candidate's debate for CT Senate:

Mosler, a businessman who says he has collected more than 11,000 signatures in his effort to secure a spot on the November ballot, said he favors a federal payroll tax holiday as a way to get the economy started again. He is also proposing providing unemployed Americans with an $8-an-hour job to help them transition back to the workforce.

Now ask yourselves why the legacy parties don't offer a Jobs Guarantee.

The answer is that they don't believe in it, because a Washington Consensus-style policy of permanently higher unemployment has complete bipartisan support in Versailles. And that's why the legacy parties deserve to be destroyed, and I hope the candidacy of Mosler and others like him gets that done as soon as possible.

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connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

Just wondering if you know that Mosler is the Tea Party candidate? His campaign contacted me because they wanted me to interview him saying "he has an interesting position on healthcare" that he wanted to share. I might just do it, if only to get him on the record.

I suspect he is hitting up Bloggers, even liberal ones, because the Tea Party in CT (they are a real political party here) is having a hard time getting any media coverage.

Submitted by lambert on

He's definitely not. He can talk to the Tea Party crowd (thank The God(ess)(e)(s) Of Your Choice, If Any) but that doesn't make him one.

See here for Mosler at a live blog we did at our Fiscal Sustainability Conference. This is not Tea Party thinking; it just isn't. I mean, since when did the Tea Partiers advocate for a Jobs Guarantee?

So, yeah, I'd recommend you go talk to the guy, for sure. Mail me if you want more info.

a little night musing's picture
Submitted by a little night ... on

I'm still not enthusiastic (the opposite in fact) about the payroll tax holiday.

eta: Lambert, several online sources say he's running as a "Tea Party Democrat".

And there's the title on this HuffPost piece: "Warren Mosler: a progressive health care proposal from a Tea Party Democrat". Don't know if he wrote the title, but he is the author of the piece.

Submitted by gob on

That reminds me, what happened to the effort to publish the transcripts? After the hours I put in, I'd like to see the results, did I miss the publication?

If something's holding it up that I could help with, I'd be happy to.

connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

Oh yes he is.... That is how his campaign manager introduced him to me. From his site:

My name is Warren Mosler, and I want to fix our economy.

When people first meet me, they want to know where I stand. I am a populist Tea Party Independent, in the Jacksonian tradition, representing the core values I grew up with in the 1950’s.

Today’s Independent populist economic message calls for lowering taxes so working-class people can afford to buy the goods and services they produce, limiting government to the provision of public infrastructure, utilizing competitive market forces to achieve economic objectives, and, of utmost importance, restoring constitutional government and personal responsibility.

a little night musing's picture
Submitted by a little night ... on

And, be fair, Lambert: your first response to connecticutman saying that Mosler was running as Tea Party was to say "No, he isn't", so that's what we're responding to.

He could run as a Tea Party Independent or whatever with policies I like, and I'd support him. I don't care about the label: my "for real" was kind of saying "this Tea Party thing is not as narrow as we sometimes think".

But I repeat, I'm not impressed with his policy positions, and the ones CTman cites from his website are even worse in my view. Limiting government to the provision of public infrastructure? Restoring constitutional government and personal responsibility? I'm not even sure what he means by that last one, but "personal responsibility" is not generally used in any way I can get behind in politics.

(BTW, Lambert, notice we're still having that problem where people's handles show up as the subject line of their comments?)

connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

And I still think I may interview him. They know I am a liberal blogger (mentioned my Drinking Liberally in New Milford Blog in their email) so I figure I might just want to hear what he has to say about an issue, healthcare, that they said I would be interested in hearing about.

Submitted by lambert on

Do it!

I mean, I suppose I'd rather have a Tea Party Democrat than the Republicans we've got in office now.

connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

Doesn't have a chance of winning, IMHO. Blumenthal, who I hate to say is a bit to the right of Dodd, is going to runaway with the CT-SEN race unless he blows himself up before the elections.

Just sayin' don't get yer hopes up of a more left leaning senator on any populist issues comin' outta CT anytime soon..

Submitted by lambert on

Third parties win the ideas. That is really a win.

But CT is ripe for a split, too. Independents, I think, are big there.

a little night musing's picture
Submitted by a little night ... on

from the HuffPo piece:

1) Everyone gets 5,000 on January 1 each year to spend on health care.

2) $1,000 is for preventative care, and the other $4,000 is for all other health care needs.

3) If you need more than that you are covered by a form of Medicare.

4) At year end you get the unused portion of the 4,000 as a gift with no strings attached.

5) You are free to buy any private insurance or medical plan you wish.

I used those particular numbers as a reasonable starting point for discussion.

Children under 18 would be covered by Medicare and not participate in this plan. I don't want to give parents a cash incentive to not take their children to the doctor.

This proposal is progressive because the $5,000 is worth a lot more to people with lower incomes than to people with higher incomes.

It also utilizes competitive market forces to help contain costs by maximizing personal choice and tapping into America's unparalleled ability and enthusiasm to shop.

It doubles available doctor patient time as doctors would have to discuss costs with their patients instead of with insurance companies.

It reduces the Medicare administrative burden for current Medicare participants as they would be on their own up to their first $5,000 of expenditures.

The cash back incentive serves to minimize overuse.

It is fiscally responsible as the total medical costs to our nation will fall dramatically even as available doctor/patient time dramatically increases.

It is a populist, bottom up solution for universal health care with appropriate incentives to minimize abuse, corruption, and fraud.

Everyone is free to select their doctors.

The government is not involved in the doctor patient interaction up to the first $5,000 dollars, and all are free to not use the Medicare option if they so desire.

Tax increases are not appropriate as the spending related to this proposal will not only not be inflationary but will serve to reduce prices and costs. In fact, the deflationary and competitive aspects may even lead to a tax cut to sustain aggregate demand.

This progressive proposal is more than consistent with core Tea Party and traditional populist Democratic values:

It reduces the participation of government in the actual health care process.

It employs competitive market solutions.

It increases personal freedom.

It works from the bottom up.

Additionally, this proposal removes all of the unfair financial burdens of health care from the States, and removes health care costs as marginal costs of production from small and large businesses alike.

sisterkenney's picture
Submitted by sisterkenney on

I mean, WTF? "You are free to BUY any private insurance or medical plan you wish" (sound like single-payer to you?? thought not). The "tell":
"It also utilizes competitive market forces to help contain costs by maximizing personal choice and tapping into America's unparalleled ability and enthusiasm to shop." (To shop???) Better yet:
"It reduces the participation of government in the actual health care process.
It employs competitive market solutions.
It increases personal freedom."

This is a propaganda piece that is using all the code words that the tea-party/libertarian/right wing/ayn randians use. I am enraged!!

Submitted by lambert on

.... you are covered by a form of Medicare."

How is that glibertarian?

Not my proposal, for sure, but not what you're saying it is. Don't you understand that all the labels that Versailles invents are designed to provoke rage?

Incidentally, he's running as an Independent, not a D. So for all I know, Tea Party Democrat works just fine for him, yes?

Bottom line is that Connecticut Man should totally go do the interview!

sisterkenney's picture
Submitted by sisterkenney on

And how does "being covered by a form of Medicare" tie into "buying whatever insurance you want"? Why bring insurance companies into the mix? And how, exactly, do "market forces" and "competition" and "personal freedom" come into play? My point is that this plan is garbled, tries to give everybody kind of what they think they want, and doesn't address the best answer to our health care dilemma. So yes, I'd like to hear what he has to say about that.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

Which also allows for purchasing supplemental insurance, if you want it, which is exactly what Mosler is offering.

Such a small thing to nitpick over, considering the alternatives in CT aren't offering anything close to that.

Yes, it's a sop to those who believe that insurance companies actually add something useful to the health care process, but I don't expect "purity" from people trying to get elected.

The truth is, the Tea Party types tend to be people who would be helped most by Mosler's policies, so trying to reach out to these people, on their terms is not the stupid thing to do. To act as if his policies are self explanatorily the best, and offer no grounds of compromise are stupid things to do.

Submitted by windy on

if this 'Medicare' doesn't kick in until $5000? Would everyone be automatically enrolled in this? If not, would it be just another high risk pool?

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

If it's a "form of Medicare" so, no it wouldn't be a high risk pool, but it would keep small use consumers out of the pool.

But it's not a "high risk" pool, I'm a low risk person, but I could still require thousands of dollars in care. It's a high use pool, which makes sense to me.

This plan could also allow for a real life demonstration that it's not the high use people, who are driving up health care costs, but the insurance companies.

a little night musing's picture
Submitted by a little night ... on

It's the Public Option, even though he's described it as "single payer" in another comment on this thread.

If it's an option, it's not single-payer.

And Lambert, you're still focusing on the labels, which we (or I, anyway) have left behind a long time ago. If these specific policy proposals were coming from anyone else, would you be so sanguine about them? I'm kind of appalled. What's happened to you?

This isn't about the label. It's about the policy. I'm very unimpressed with Mosler's replies to our comments on this thread, but what's really scaring me is your (lack of) response.

a little night musing's picture
Submitted by a little night ... on

I continue to think that a payroll tax holiday is a really bad idea for reasons mentioned here by Lambert, and also by in a comment I can't find now, and also, this sort of tax break is probably not a good form of stimulus. It is essentially a feelgood measure.

Submitted by lambert on

It's every bad thing Mosler says it is (regressive, for example) but once ratcheted down, it will be very hard to ratchet it back up. So we end up drowning government in a bath tub. No thanks.

Note that MMT provides (in my view) the right way to look at the creation of money and at the operations of the financial system, especially fiscal issues. That does not at all imply policy prescriptions, which can span the range from "right" to "left" (whatever those terms mean these days).

Submitted by lambert on

... isn't it to look at policies, instead of reacting to whatever ginned up hate figure the legacy parties have created for our (dis)edification?

Whether or not one agrees with Mosler's proposals, they are so not Tea Party. Surely that should be enough for us?

Further, I think that the MMT crowd -- which, let us remember, includes Jamie Galbraith -- is dead on in their analysis of how money works, and in their desire to drive a stake through the heart of the financial sector. Agree or disagree with the policies, they are not reasoning from false premises.

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

The "Tea Party" is an astroturfed organization founded by Dick Armey and other glibertarian, socially conservative bad actors. The Atlantic Monthly says Dick and his buddies will be quick to tell you it's a populist movement. Sure it is. I believe Dick Armey, don't you? Case closed!

Honestly, I'm scratching my head here. Why would Warren Mosler apply that label to himself? Does he not know where Tea Party money comes from, or doesn't he care? And does he really agree with Dick Armey about anything, including monetary policy? I think not.

Yes, I am focusing on Dick Armey because he is now the head of the Tea Party. Voters will do the same. LIBERAL voters.

Armey's conservative nonprofit group FreedomWorks has facilitated Tea Party activists with guidance and resources, allowing for the growth of the movement that supports candidates like Kentucky's GOP Senate candidate Rand Paul and Nevada's GOP Senate candidate Sharron Angle. But Paul's and Angle's association with the Tea Party could be making their campaigns harder, Armey said, according to Politico.

"Don't ask for more of what you really don't want," Armey said Wednesday at an event sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor. "Since the left hates the Tea Party and they hate me, let's see if we can get 'em to double down on me by me claiming to be the leader of the Tea Party."

See? Armey (who's pretending not to be the founder of the Tea Party as usual) doesn't even want the rightwing nutjobs like Rand Paul and Sharron Angle to be tarred with the Tea Party brush. The Tea Party label is too extreme FOR THEM. Why isn't it too extreme for Warren Mosler?

It's one thing to talk to the Tea Party and ask for their vote - I have no problems with that. But for Mosler to label himself a Tea Party Democrat is mindblowingly bad marketing.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

Lots of people sympathize with the Tea Party who aren't crazy. We've had this discussion here before and many people agreed with that, including some who are trashing "Tea Party Democrat".

The astroturfed Tea Party group should be separated from a true "Tea Party spirit". (C'mon, ya'll know exactly what I'm talking about so please spare the semantic tomfoolery.) The "Tea Party spirit" is anger that our tax dollars are going to Wall Street, not Main Street. That's completely different than the Tea Party "movement" that's made up of, or at least sponsored by libertarian racists. That should be kept straight. Which makes me realize, once again, that the left (or liberals or whatever the fuck we want to call ourselves) need to stop letting Versailles control our language. We can fight back, ya know. We need not constantly change our language to appease the Village/Versailles Noise Machine.

On a strategic note, I don't think the support for Tea Party "movement" is deep. Their may be support for the spirit, but I don't see many people embracing the "movement" as a legitimate alternative for obvious reasons so embracing a phrase that can be so easily tied to the TP "movement" (haha TP movement) is dangerous. Perhaps Mosler has some polls suggesting otherwise, but if not I think its a losing strategy.

warren mosler's picture
Submitted by warren mosler on

The Tea party wouldn't give me the right time.
They endorsed Peter Schiff without giving me a chance to state my position.

The Democrats weren't interested in policy at all.

So I got with the Independent Party, worked to get the 11,000 signatures we thought we needed to get 7,500 valid ones, and I should now be on the ballot in November.

Read my address to the Dallas Tea Party leadership committee from Feb:

Read my proposals for banking, tsy, fed, and fdic:

My healthcare proposal is on this site above.

Everyone gets the funds for the first 5,000 of expenses (1,000 for preventative, 4,000 for everything else)

Anything above that is fully covered by a form of Medicare- no donut holes- no out of pocket expenses needed.

The govt. is the single payer for both the 5,000 and the Medicare for all.

I see no reason not to let anyone buy any supplemental policy they want?

With this plan the likes of 'risk pools' are not an issue.

My calculations tell me the payroll tax holiday can be permanent.

I've taken the pledge never to vote to cut social security benefits or eligibility.

I defined the label I applied to myself, also above on this blog.

I believe my economic agenda/policy proposals is consistent with the populism of both Tea party economics and Progressive economics.

All are against the top down trickle down policies we've witnessed during the 'crisis'

I have the only bottom up agenda maybe because I'm the only one who understands monetary operations, and knows that federal taxes function to regulate aggregate demand, and not collect revenue per se. So I know the US is not broke, has not run out of money, is not dependent on borrowing, sets its own interest rates, and that for a given size govt. taxes need to be set at the right level to sustain private sector full employment.

And that the headline deficit dove progressives are losing to the hawks because they don't understand the monetary system and therefore concede federal deficits are a risk to national solvency and sovereignty, especially in the long term. That is, they believe the US could become the next Greece, when nothing could be further from the truth as a simple point of logic.

Heck, the Democrats cut 500 billion out of Medicare in the healthcare bill on that mistake- they thought the govt was out of money, and that they had to borrow from china and leave the bill to their grandchildren, when there is no such thing. How bad is that???!!!

So how about getting ourselves back to full employment in very short order and continuing our social debates in the context of full employment rather than the economic disaster we are faced with today?

(By the way, I'm also pro choice and support gay rights, etc.)

And this is a one time thing. I'm running only as a matter of conscience.

After the election I'm going to fade into retirement and live on my social security.

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

So you are running as an Independent. That makes a lot of sense.

Thanks for the clarification on this, and the other points raised in the post.

connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

I am glad you clarified some of these points. And I look forward to interviewing you tomorrow.

warren mosler's picture
Submitted by warren mosler on

These are the first two endorsements on my website. Please read the rest as well, along with the linked list of endorsements:

Endorsements of Mosler for Senate
Letters of Endorsement for Warren Mosler
Independent Candidate for United States Senate from the State of Connecticut

Warren Mosler is an amazing individual and would be an extraordinary representative. He has demonstrated exceptional skills in finance without ever being becoming an apologist for the industry. Indeed, he is famous internationally for exposing the industry’s shortcomings. His warnings came long before the crisis. His high performance in finance has continued even during the most challenging economic circumstances in 80 years. He is also strong in identifying phony crises.

Warren is one of the rare individuals that understands money and finance and how the Treasury and the Fed really work. He receives information from industry experts from all over the world. He deliberately seeks out individuals with very different views. He enjoys polite debate focused on the merits of the issues. He is intellectually curious and honest and always trying to learn more about a broad range of issues. He cares about the fate of every American. He is fiercely independent in thought and deed.

He understands that America’s success depends on how well we prepare future generations. He has put his money, and his time, to improve that preparation.

If you elect him, he will work for you and he will work hard and well with all his integrity, passion, guts, and brains.

—William K. Black
Associate Professor of Economics and Law, University of Missouri-Kansas City

“Warren Mosler is one of the most original and clear-eyed participants in today’s debates over economic policy. His entry into electoral politics is a great event; Connecticut would be lucky to have him in the Senate.”

—James Galbraith,
former Executive Director, Joint Economic Committee,
and professor, The University of Texas at Austin

Submitted by lambert on

... are hardly (R) Tea Partiers.

Let's also remember that, as an Independent, Mosler's job is not to appeal to D regulars -- exactly those who would, statistically -- that is, no aspersions cast on any commenter here -- are least likely to vote for him anyhow. So his target constituency (and perhaps the press) "Tea Party Democrat" probably tells a fine story.

Frankly, since the Ds who threw me and those like me under the bus are also the very same people yelling "Look! Over there! Sarah Palin just walked into a Denny's!" I'm really not very impressed by all the pearl-clutching about Tea Partiers either.

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

Mr. Mosler just said he is running as an Independent. So, no need to further defend something that's not even true.

There is no pearl-clutching on my part. I am just saying that it is incredibly bad marketing, in my opinion, to ally oneself with a Republican astroturf organization if one is a lefty of any sort.

warren mosler's picture
Submitted by warren mosler on

and yes, for me govt. should be limited to the provision of 'public infrastructure' in the broad sense.

Social Security and Medicare are part of public infrastructure, for example.

So is the military for its mission.

What we don't want, for example, is the military opening barber shops and giving civilians haircuts to make extra $ for the military to pay for itself.

And that is not to say that if we find public purpose in giving school kids free haircuts we should not do that.

Or if we find public purpose in charging user fees to reduce usage, that can be done as well.

Broadly defined, that which serves public purpose is public infrastructure, and the motive for govt. is always and only public purpose.