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Debt, Deficits or Unemployment? Identifying Real Threats to Growth

Start/End Tuesday, November 13, 2012 06:15 PM EST -- 08:30 PM EST
Location Name JG 104

The aim of the Modern Money and Public Purpose seminar series is to dispel commonly held economic myths about money, macroeconomics and government financing, and to outline an alternative progressive paradigm grounded in the legal and institutional realities of the global monetary system. In addition of the obvious relevance of macroeconomics to the ongoing global economic crisis, the series aims to address the fundamental economic problem of full employment in the context of economic rights and long-term sustainable development. The speakers come from a diverse set of fields (including History, Law, Finance, Economics, Social Work, Criminology and Systems Theory) but share an understanding of what money is, how it works, and how flaws in the legal structure of the monetary system are contribute to systemic and day-to-day economic problems including unemployment, excessive student debt and stagnating real wages.

This seminar explores the intersection between the real and monetary (or nominal) economy. It addresses popular misconceptions surrounding the "sustainability" of government deficits, national debt and the U.S. trade deficit. Questions to be addressed include:

- Why does unemployment exist in a monetary economy?
- Are government deficits sustainable?
- What is a national debt, and is it a problem?
- Can nations "afford" welfare programs such as medical and social insurance?
- What is the relationship between money creation, exchange rates and global trade?

Contact: Rohan Grey, rlg2143@columbia.edu