So what’s the economic or political answer to ‘rents’?

This evonomics article points out the harsh truth that LAND value increases in the UK are largely what’s responsible for most of the economic ‘growth’ there. (Read the piece!) After reading it, I understand what the author sees as a problem in that ‘owners’ are getting an unearned windfall while those that don’t own land are being screwed. But what is the economic, in this case actually POLITICAL, answer to this ‘problem’?  I’m not sure there is a way out of this trap.  Capitalism often has to be ‘saved’ from the capitalists by politicians, but this time the capitalists have made damn sure they own the means of ‘politics’. Who’s going to save capitalist from themselves this time and how?

Maximize Shareholder Value BS

You always hear that myth that corporation’s first duty is to ‘maximize shareholder value’. Well that’s bunk, and I want an easy place to keep the response when someone tosses that BS my way, so I’m putting it here.

NakedCapitalism has the scoop and ya’ll should check it out. It’s a great econ blog.

 

Also included on that page: 

I read tweets like this from my elected officials ALL THE TIME. 

#Obamacare is broken. Americans deserve a market-driven health-care system that puts patients first.

I always come away thinking that, either they are really stupid or they think I AM. I mean what did they think we had BEFORE ‘obamacare’ that we so desperately needed something like ‘obamacare’ to FIX?  A ‘market-driven health-care system’ is what was BREAKING THE COUNTRY!

Do these guys just have no ability to REMEMBER things? They must think that their constituency doesn’t.

Troubling

By now everyone and their pet parrot have an opinion on the Indiana RFRA law. I don’t intend to discuss whether that law is good or bad but something more meta about it. Specifically, what’s bothering me is the fact that PEOPLE’S opinions don’t seem to be having much affect on the law makers. No, the only voices that seem to be bothering THEM is from corporations. THAT BOTHERS ME. I don’t think this is supposed to be “government for the corporations by their paid sub-contractors”. The ENORMOUS pressure being brought to bear that everyone is talking about is CORPORATE POWER.

We should ALL be bothered by that. Maybe THIS time the majority of powerful corporations are backing your position but what about NEXT time? Corporations need to have LESS ability to affect our laws and lawmakers and the CITIZENS, the actual PEOPLE, of our country need to have MORE.

Guilty ‘Pleasure’? Definitely NOT the right word. The econ blogs I read more than is good for my happiness.

Calculated Risk. This one can be a bit dry and focused on things I don’t particulary care about.

Economist’s View. This one I check often. It tends to be links to other noteworthy posts on economics and/or policy effects of econ.

House of Debt. Gets deeper than I can understand pretty often. Only check it rarely.

Naked Capitalism. This is one of my favourites and check it more often than any of the rest. The comments on contentious subjects can be even better than the posts. Plus Bill Black often gets quoted here and I really like his take on things.

Mainly Macro. Simon Wren-Lewis’ blog. He often gets quoted on Economist’s View so I like to check out what’s on his mind.