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Samizdata quote of the day – Neoliberal myths

As the man doesn’t understand what neoliberalism is his critique is going to be weak tea, no?

Tim Worstall

28 comments to Samizdata quote of the day – Neoliberal myths

  • Kirk

    Do ‘neoliberals’ understand what neoliberalism is, and its implications? Its consequences?

  • Carnivorous Bookworm

    Yes Kirk, and the consequences of neoliberalism are typically economic growth & more overall prosperity. To really work, you need a govt not addicted to controlling everything, which is why neoliberalism isn’t well liked by people who want maximal states

  • Stonyground

    So, is neoliberalism just liberalism as it was before non liberal people claimed the word liberal to describe themselves?

  • I always thought “neoliberalism” was a slur word used by lazy thinkers who didn’t want to engage in an argument against views they don’t like. Much like calling one’s opponent “fascist”.

  • So, is neoliberalism just liberalism as it was before non liberal people claimed the word liberal to describe themselves?

    Yes, pretty much. I prefer “classical liberalism” to differentiate liberalism from “liberalism-meaning-being-profoundly-illiberal”

  • WindyPants

    It is for this reason that I describe myself as a neo-whiggist.

  • Paul Marks

    “neoliberal” is normally, although not always, a term used by Collectivists as a smear attack.

    But I also clicked on the link – and it led to various claims, for example that banks only lend out “deposits”.

    True – if (if) one uses a definition of the word “deposit” that is utterly irrational.

    For example, if there is a grain depository – deposits of grain are deliveries of grain and if the depository lends out grain then grain goes out of the depository to those who borrow the grain.

    Sadly anyone who thinks this is the way banks work is mistaken – utterly mistaken.

    Most bank “deposits” have no physical existence – they are essentially legalised fraud, created by book keeping tricks.

    There used to be some connection between money and a physical commodity that people chose to value (such as gold or silver), but there is no connection now – none. The last monetary system that had any connection with a physical commodity was the Swiss – and that connection with reality was broken in the 1990s.

    And there is also no longer any real connection, even in terms of fiat money (token notes and coins), between bank lending and Real Savings – the actual sacrifice of consumption. Today lending is credit money creation – lights on computer screens, which tends to go to the connected who use this “money” to buy real assets before prices rise (or rather before the value of this “money” falls) – Cantillon Effect (but on a truly vast scale – essentially the general economy is a Cantillon Effect now).

    In the past (say when my father was born 1913 – for the position then see Ludwig Von Mises “Theory of Money and Credit” 1912) it was possible to talk of the economy being radically distorted (by bank credit), but still fundamentally “capitalist”.

    That is no longer the case.

    It is no longer the case of a the distortion of a basically sound system – now the distortion is-the-system.

  • Paul Marks

    When a system is fundamentally sane, but suffering from serious abuses – then one can suggest plans for ending the abuses. The plan may or may not work (for example Sir Robert Peel’s Act of 1844 was a failure – because he identified “bank notes” as the problem, which they were not, the real problem was fake bank “deposits” – i.e. “deposits” that had no physical existence, “deposits” that were book keeping deceptions), but it is rational to think in terms of correcting the abuses.

    But when a system has become the abuses (when there is no soundness left in it – no connection to reality) then one has to advice pulling back – in this case individuals moving away from major financial centres, such as New York City (which appears to be “Ground Zero” of the financial madness) and buying real assets, such as farm land.

    “But that is what the rich are doing – you are agreeing with these monsters!”

    When a system can not be saved there is nothing immoral about people trying to save themselves as individuals and as families. For example, Mr William “Bill” Gates may be a dreadful man in XYZ ways – but there is nothing wrong with him choosing to live a long way from a major city, and choosing to invest in things that are likely to keep some value (such as farm land). Saving himself, or trying to do so, is not (in-its-self) bad.

    So, in this at least, I do agree with these “monsters”.

    Of course, I do not deny that they have WEF style ideas about “planning the world”, and I am in no way defending such ideas. I am pointing at their sane moments when they understand (or partly understand) that the plan is not going to work – and they are going to need “bolt holes” (for want of a better term).

  • Paul Marks

    As for the claims in the piece – there is a sarcastic remark about “austerity worked well in 1932” (meaning that it did not) – in reality there was no real cut America government spending in 1932, or under President Hoover generally (even as Commerce Secretary, a Department that should not exist, he had always tried to spend more, not less). There was a big increase in taxation – perhaps that is what is meant by “austerity”.

    There was a cut in American government spending in 1921 – in response to that crash (i.e. after the crash – the cut in government spending did not cause the crash, it came after it), and it did work very well. Although the main difference between 1921 and 1929 is that after 1929, and for the first time in American monetary history (all the Credit Bubble crashes going back to 1819) the Federal Government actively intervened to prevent Real Wages being cut – this meant (was bound to lead) to mass unemployment for year after year, till World War II when Real Wages did fall (as measured against real “Black Market” prices – rather than the fiction of government prices).

    Still that is history – to turn to economics.

    Yes Milton Friedman made the same mistake as Irving Fisher – defining “inflation” as an “increase in the price level” (via some index or other) rather than an increase in the money supply. This meant that Irving Fisher did not see that the late 1920s were a period of great inflation because “prices are not going up in the shops” – – this meant the crash of 1929 baffled him.

    Is the author saying that Irving Fisher and Milton Friedman were correct in supporting an increase in the money supply to “keep the price level stable”? In which case the author is mistaken – horribly mistaken.

    Prices should be allowed to decline over time as people find better ways to produce goods and services.

    Lending should be from Real Savings (the actual sacrifice of consumption) – not book keeping tricks.

    And money should be something that people choose to value – it should not be a game of governments and banks.

    But that is a different world.

    A world where, for example, the robbing and defrauding of the population was not upheld by two Supreme Court Judgements (5 to 4) in 1935.

  • Paul Marks

    Of course “worked damn well in 1932” may be a reference to the United Kingdom, rather than the United States.

    I do not know whether government spending in the United Kingdom was cut in 1932 – I believe that the main change in economic policy in that year in the United Kingdom was a move away from Free Trade, the introduction of tariffs on goods imported from outside the Empire. But there may also have been a cut in government spending – I do not know.

    In 1931 Britain “went off the gold standard” – the “gold standard” meaning the pretence since 1925 that the Bank of England had a certain amount of gold in relation to its “Pounds” which it did NOT have – thus establishing a false exchange rate.

    Although it should be noted that even before 1914 the exchange rate of the Pound to gold was fake – the Bank of England did not have that amount of physical gold. Although the legalised fraud was far less extreme than it was after 1925 – which pretended that the money printing of the First World War had not happened (a dramatic display of dishonesty).

    An honest exchange rate is not hard to work out – if the Bank of England has, say one million ounces of physical gold and it issues one million Pounds then a Pound is worth one ounce of gold. And if it (and its banking associates) issue one hundred million Pounds – then each Pound is worth 1% of an ounce of gold. If there were one thousand million Pounds – then it is 0.1% of an ounce (and so on).

    But honestly and banking did not go together – even before 1914, which leads us back to the first comment. How one can talk about “abuses” in the past – the abuse of a basically sane system, which is quite different to today – the modern system having no connection to reality what-so-ever.

    One can not correctly talk of the modern system having “abuses” within it – the modern system is a vast abuse in-its-self.

  • Tim Worstall

    Neoliberal is classical liberals reclaiming the word from those who would insult them by using it. As with queer.

    “its implications? Its consequences?”

    Sure, at heart it’s just the insistence that markets solve more problems than most people think markets solve. So, let’s have more markets in order to solve more problems. The consequence being that more problems are solved.

    It’s no more difficult than that. Everyone sentient agrees that markets solve some problems and not others. Neoliberals – classical liberals – are simply a point, or band, on the spectrum stating that markets solve more problems than most people think. That neoliberals are correct is interesting but not actually the point.

    “and it led to various claims, for example that banks only lend out “deposits”.”

    No, I deliberately didn’t put it that way. Rather “Banks do in fact finance their loans with deposits. That’s why deposits plus capital always equal loans, as can be seen on any bank balance sheet.” As you can see, the word used is “finance”. Something that is both obviously true and also gets us around that idiot argument of whether the loan comes first, before the deposit financing or afterwards. The fact being that it doesn’t matter. A bank whose deposit base plus capital does not match its loan book is bust. At 4,30 pm on the day this is noted. This is why banks pay interest on deposits. For they must have them.

    “As for the claims in the piece – there is a sarcastic remark about “austerity worked well in 1932” (meaning that it did not) – in reality there was no real cut America government spending in 1932, “

    Sigh. Expansionary fiscal austerity worked very well in Britain in 1932. Cut govt spending, cut the deficit, come off the gold standard (in ’31) and expand the money supply. The fiscal effects were contractionary, the monetary expansionary, the overall policy effect expansionary.

    “Milton Friedman were correct in supporting an increase in the money supply to “keep the price level stable”? In which case the author is mistaken – horribly mistaken.”

    Friedman noted that an expanding economy required a larger money supply. We can derive this from MV=PQ if we like. Or, by analogy, a restaurant that starts serving 100 covers for lunch instead of 50 requires either more plates or to wash them faster. More M or a higher rate of V. This is not remotely controversial.

  • Paul Marks

    The original author – under what I think is a false name, so let us call him T.E., lays out a series of propositions.

    These TE calls “Neoliberal myths” – failing to understand that whilst the propositions are mostly GOOD, no actual free market person thinks they have any connection with the nightmare of insane evil that is the modern system. We are NOT saying this is what the modern world is like – we are saying this is what the modern world is not like. It does follow these (basically sane) propositions.

    Tim Worstall then tries to adapt these propositions – in order to fit the modern world, and shows great mental skill in trying to do so. But the effort is essentially trying to achieve an impossible task.

  • Paul Marks

    I did mention that Tim Worstell (rather than T.E.) may have be referring to a cut in British government spending in 1932 – I do not know whether there was a real cut in British government spending in that year, if they was GOOD.

    “Freidman notes that expanding economy required a larger money supply” – in which case he was wrong, because it does not. Indeed “expanding the money supply” creates a Credit Bubble economy which must, eventually, bust – as in 1921 (or 1819 – or so many other times) or 1929.

    A rational course of action is to allow people to find cheaper and better ways to produce goods and services – this will lead to prices gradually falling over time.

    “is not remotely controversial”.

    Here I agree with Tim Worstall – a whole series of false things are “not remotely controversial”” in the modern world., that is the problem.

    “an expanding economy requires a larger money supply” is the road to ruin.

    Just as money lenders (who now call themselves “bankers” – and this special name may be part of the problem) not lending out Real Savings (their own Real Savings, or the Real Savings of other people entrusted to them to be lent, creating “deposits” by book keeping tricks (legalised fraud) is the road to ruin.

    T.E. describes, in his propositions (which he called “Neoliberal myths”) a sane world – but sadly a world he does NOT support, and which has no connection to our world, which left any connection with sanity a quite some time time ago.

    Tim Worstall has some things in common with T.E. – but differs in some important respects.

    If there is to be a future – then what T.E. calls “Neoliberal myths” must become its foundational principles.

  • Paul Marks

    “an expanding economy requires an expanding money supply” – that is the central error, from Irving Fisher and others, and it leads on to the other errors.

    It is linked to the “Banking School” of the early 19th century – with their idea that their own credit-money expansion (essentially a shell game) was “necessary for the needs of trade” – that economists (right down to Mises and Haye) struggled against.

    The fallacy can be summed up in the words “creating more money makes us all richer” – it makes a few (connected) people richer, but at the expense of everyone else, as was pointed out by Richard Cantillon 300 years ago, i.e. before any of the “Banking School” were even born.

    Lastly there is nothing wrong with money lending – but when the money lender gets the idea that he (or she) can “create” deposits (loans money) by clever accounting, then the consequences are very bad.

    Be content with lending out money that actually exists (not money you have created by book keeping tricks) and do not pretend to still have the money after you have lent it out. You have the money when, and if, you are repaid.

    General Peron (and other such) believed that such trickery is wrong if private bankers do it – but wonderful if governments do it. He was quite WRONG – it is just as bad whether it is done by bankers or governments (although banks and governments are normally connected – after all Credit Bubble banks need to be able to get the government courts to impose “suspension of cash payments” and other legalised criminality – not that “cash” any longer has any real meaning in our world).

    And the more it is done, the “wronger” it is – the more everything (both the economy and society – the culture itself) is twisted and distorted into a madhouse.

  • Kirk

    The point I was alluding to was that the construct ‘neoliberalism’ is about as useful as that of ‘neoconservative’, and that it has been taken up by equally unserious people. Some of whom are actually the same individuals…

    I have come to distrust any of the ‘-isms’, regardless of pedigree. What I have observed is that they’re all of a kind, in nature: Ideological calcifications whose adherents typically embrace them with the fervor of the convert, and who will not continue to pragmatically observe effects thereof, or modify their beliefs. All of them have this singular feature, in that the true believers in them will double-down on the ideology in the face of objective failure and dysfunction.

    I don’t think any of these things we apply the ‘-ism’ label to are necessarily good or bad; it’s mostly the idiots adopting them with the unchanging immutable belief in them. OK, fine: You’re a big-C Communist, you’ve taken over Russia, established the Soviet Union, and it is the mid-1920s. Your policies are not working; what do you do? Do you modify them, or do you double-down on them?

    A pragmatist would observe the effect, and say “Yeah, well… That theory ain’t working out; let us try modifying it, or another entirely…”

    An ‘ism-ist’, to coin a recursive neologism, is going to ignore objective reality around them, and continue to apply the ideology until the whole thing either crashes down, or they manage to get some sort of acceptable result, no matter how many eggs they have to break.

    Ideologues are not rational people; they are people who’ve substituted a belief system for actual thought. The results of their efforts around the world are clear proof that the best place for them is for them to be staffing some harmless cult with little to no real power in the world, because that’s where they can do the least harm.

    It’s amazing where you run into these people, and how common they are. It often seems like they learned one lesson early in life, found it painful, and then just… Stopped learning. Stopped thinking. Stopped observing clearly, seeing only that which they want to see.

    Frankly, I’ve come to question their very sentience. Many of the ones I’ve run into remind me of automatons more than people.

  • Steven R

    Kirk is right. It applies to both sides. The Neocons in DC just couldn’t get their heads around the fact that the world doesn’t really want to be America. We topple governments and are surprised that the resulting chaos ever existed.

    “If the theory isn’t working, it’s obviously reality that is in the wrong, so let’s double down on what we’re doing and force reality to bend to our will” is the M.O. of pretty much every -ism out there.

  • Beedle

    But the effort is essentially trying to achieve an impossible task.

    I think Worstall does an excellent job, so not an impossible task at all. Any replies by Paul Marks should be kept to under 5000 words.

  • Kirk

    The root of the whole problem lies in the nature of the people who we allow into positions of power. We don’t police them anywhere near well enough, and because of that, the tendency over time is for the glib and facile to wind up in positions of power throughout the systems we blithely set up. Most of these people are surface thinkers who glom on to whatever the current rage is, in terms of thought, and then run with that for as long as they can keep the scam going.

    Most of the people who wind up in charge of things are essentially con artists. Ever observe what goes on around you, in every organization? Who gets promoted, who gets selected to run things? The ‘Yes Men’, the ones who parrot whatever the bosses want to hear. These things are especially bad in ideologically bound organizations like the Communist Parties of the world, because they are founded explicitly along ideological lines. If you’re a pragmatic person, able to learn from experience? You are precisely the person these organizations are set up to weed out and reduce. Which is why they all wind up run by ideologically pure and totally dysfunctional morons whose every act is predicated on the “official word” as it is spoken. You see this time and time again; the Church? Same sort of thing; venal opportunists wind up running everything. The political parties? Same thing. And, they’re all of a type, and when you get to late-form systems like this, distant from their founding, what you find is a convergence of interests such that any formerly competing organizations and ideologies have all become a seamless whole, run by and for the benefit of the connected within them.

    If you think of the whole thing as a metastasis process, wherein cancer cells in the form of apparatchiks and nomenklatura spread and perpetuate their own kind throughout a system, well… You’ve got a good idea of how it all works. This is why it is difficult to discern a difference between national-level party types here in the US–The DNC and RNC have very similar interests, and those interests do not include the better interests of the average American. Just their own. Same-same everywhere else, in every organization, at every level. It’s a disease process; a life-cycle sort of affair, and if you look at it from just the right perspective, you can begin to see organizations as these separate discrete organisms, totally separate from the individuals making them up.

  • Tim Worstall

    ” OK, fine: You’re a big-C Communist, you’ve taken over Russia, established the Soviet Union, and it is the mid-1920s. Your policies are not working; what do you do? Do you modify them, or do you double-down on them?”

    One amusement here – and it is just an amusement, not a critique or anything – is that the Commies did just that. After War Communism came the New Economic Policy. Which did in fact go back to a certain amount of markets, capitalism, profit making firms and all the rest. And the economy recovered – not that growth from the below subsistence levels of 1921/2 was going to be all that difficult, near any non-insane set of policies would have achieved that. It was in 1929 and following that the -ismers overtook the pragmatists and we got all that socialism in one country, collectivization and so on.

  • Tim Worstall

    Friedman and money supply:

    Monetarism is closely associated with economist Milton Friedman, who argued, based on the quantity theory of money, that the government should keep the money supply fairly steady, expanding it slightly each year to allow for the natural growth of the economy. Due to the inflationary effects that can be brought about by the excessive expansion of the money supply, Friedman, who formulated the theory of monetarism, asserted that monetary policy should be done by targeting the growth rate of the money supply to maintain economic and price stability.

    In his book, A Monetary History of the United States 1867–1960, Friedman proposed a fixed growth rate called the K-percent rule, suggesting that money supply should grow at a constant annual rate tied to the growth of nominal gross domestic product (GDP) and be expressed as a fixed percentage per year. This way, the money supply will be expected to grow moderately, businesses will be able to anticipate the changes to the money supply every year and plan accordingly, the economy will grow at a steady rate, and inflation will be kept at low levels.

    The base idea is simple enough. Imagine an economy with 100 transactions of $1 each. Also, the money equation. MV=PQ. The amount of money we have times the number of times we use each piece of money equals the price, in money, of transactions times the number of transactions we have using money. That’s just an identity.

    OK. Now let’s say the economy grows to 1,000 transactions of $1 each, Huzzah, more trade, we’re all richer. But we now need to have either 10 times more M – pieces of money – or we must use each piece of money tens times more often – V rises. That’s, again, an identity. If PQ is up by 10x then MV must be up by 10x because as we’ve already stated, MV=PQ is just an identity. The broad money supply (something like M4) is very close to MV. The narrow money supply (something like M0) is very close to M alone.

    Insisting that P must decline so as to make the equation balance is possible, it’s just very, very, difficult because that’s nominal deflation. Which humans don’t like. Maybe we should but we don’t – we hate, hate, nominal wages falling. Real wages are rising strongly, of course, because there’s 10x more to enjoy from our labours. But that nominal deflation is just a problem with human nature. Thus the argument. Move MV, some of which will be providing a little more M.

    It might be that people don’t like the argument but let’s be real here, Friedman was a really bright guy.

  • Martin

    The phrase neoliberal is overused, however, I do think its a useful shorthand for describing 1990s/early 2000s centrists like the Clintons, Tony Blair, Gerhard Schroder,etc.

  • Paul Marks

    Tim Worstell – I have never claimed to be a Monetarist, I am sorry if I have given that impression it was not my intention to do so.

    The economic theory that the money supply should be increased in order to “keep the price level stable” (prevent prices falling as people find better ways to do things) never made any sense in economic theory (Irving Fisher was refuted by Frank Fetter and others), and was refuted in practice after 1929. Increasing the money supply to “try and keep the price level stable” is a truly terrible thing to do.

    I have never denied that Milton Friedman was a really bright guy – I am sure his IQ was very high. I have just pointed out that that theory is utterly wrong – which it is.

    In the 19th century (before Milton Friedman was born in 1912) such ideas were already well known – and, quite rightly mocked. For example the old saying “free trade in banking is free trade in swindling” this did NOT mean that money lending was itself a corrupt act (it is not), it meant that bankers always tended to try and run a shell game by lending out “money” they did not have, indeed that did not exist at all. And that when these “free market” bankers got into trouble they always screamed for the state for help – “suspension of cash payments” from the intellectually corrupt courts, hidden bailouts from Central Banks and-so-on.

    The great error of the 19th century (and later) was to think that Central Bankers “policed” the corrupt Credit Bubble bankers – in reality Central Banks made them even worse. For example American banking was unsound before 1913 – but vastly MORE unsound after 1913 (with the introduction of the Federal Reserve).

    These days it no longer makes any sense to talk of “abuses” – as there is no soundness left in the system at all, the system does not have abuses, it is an abuse.

    Even the “gold markets” these days mostly deal in “gold” that does not exist, and the money has no connection with gold (or any other commodity) any way.

    Nor does lending any more have much of a connection with Real Savings (the actual sacrifice of consumption) – again it is not abuses at the margin, the system has become one vast abuse.

    “Nuke it from orbit – it is the only way to be sure” would be logical response to the present system.

  • Paul Marks

    Good point Martin – but I would not call the Clintons. Blair and Schroder “centrists”, they were all ever-bigger-government people.

    If you look at people such as Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan – they pined for traditional principles of thrift (Real Savings), hard work, and self denial (sacrifice of consumption). There were aware that the modern world was NOT really like that – but they rather wished it was.

    In short they knew the “Neo Liberal Myths” were no longer the way the world worked – but they still admired these principles.

    I would say the break came before Clinton and Blair – when one is dealing with people like President George Herbert Walker Bush and Prime Minister John Major one is already dealing with “Modernists” – people much like President Nixon or Prime Minister Heath. People who oppose (yes oppose) everything that is sound and decent in economic life – they despise it as “old fashioned” and “out of date”.

    But, yes, President Clinton and Prime Minister Blair, and all the rest of the international leaders do put the icing on the cake. They embraced the modern system – in all its utter vileness.

    The idea that these men were “liberals” like Prime Minister Gladstone of President Grover Cleveland is the opposite of the truth.

    The present system has nothing to with liberalism, with a capitalist free market.

    Does adding the word “neo” help? Not really – in fact it just adds confusion.

    The present system is a criminal scam – but on a truly vast scale.

    What to do?

    Well “I would not start from here” as they used to say in rural Ireland.

    Somehow we have to get back to the sound principles that T.E. mocks as the “myths of neoliberalism” – but how to do that?

  • Tony Blair was a corporatist not a centrist, a radical governmental managerialist.

  • Tim Worstall

    One thing, be very careful with the American and English definitions of “neoliberal” Blair and Clinton were by the American – those who could achieve social democratic goals through more markets and more tax on their growth. Like Sweden essentially. The English meaning is those who thought St Maggie was a bit of a wimp when it came to the joys of markets. You know, me.

    “and was refuted in practice after 1929. Increasing the money supply to “try and keep the price level stable” is a truly terrible thing to do.”

    Good Grief. The central lesson of Friedman’s magnum opus, “Monetary History”, was that the Fed failed in 1931 by allowing the money supply to fall, thereby engendering deflation and the depression. It would have been much more like 1921 without this. As, in fact, it was in the UK, a year or two of deep recession followed by recovery driven by, umm, loose monetary policy.

    People really have learnt some things about economics in the past century and a half.

  • Martin

    I should have put the phrase centrist (which I wouldn’t normally even use as a positive term anyway as I don’t mind identifying as a reactionary) in quotation marks. I would agree that Blair was actually very radical, and in a bad way. Nonetheless, correctly or otherwise, I think it is fair that much of the media and a sizeable section of the public perceived him to be a ‘centrist’ or some kind of moderate, contrasting himself with the Bennite left on one hand and ‘reactionaries’ in the Tory Party, Countryside Alliance, UKIP and so forth. For many years even supposed some ardent supposed Thatcherites like Paul Johnson and Rupert Murdoch were taken in by Blair.

    Blair, Clinton, etc seemed politically skilled at adapting to post Thatcher-Reagan politics, using ‘free-markety’ sounding policies to pursue managerialism better, such as ‘welfare/labour market reform’, further privatisation, tuition fees, central bank independence (something Margaret Thatcher never supported), mass immigration, sovereignty shredding ‘free trade’ agreements and organisations like NAFTA, the EU, WTO, etc. In isolation some of these policies could be supported, although others I’m convinced were just simply bad (immigration for example), and I don’t think any of them were pursued to try to revive nineteenth century liberalism. I know some libertarians/so-called ‘classical liberals) were critical of some of these too (for example the Mises Institute crowd never supported NAFTA, EU, WTO, etc and are skeptical of ‘open borders’ etc) but squishier types such as the supposedly ‘classical liberal’ Economist magazine loved all this Blair-Clinton ‘neoliberalism’.

  • Martin

    I should have added that many monetarist ‘free-marketeers’ seemed to support the 2008 era bank bailouts and following Quantitative Easing. A curious ‘free market’ gloss for very corporatist policies.

  • QE and bailouts are systemic madness.