We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

It’s not capitalism when private individuals stand to gain from their actions but the taxpayer carries the risk. When risks are socialised and potential profits huge, individuals are bound to be reckless: why be responsible? It’s no good agonising about the culture of banking without considering the astronomical moral hazard endemic in the system today. Of course people who do not have to bear the negative consequences of their actions behave badly.

– Steve Baker MP

Goldman Sachs’ little local difficulty

It can’t be a lot of fun working for Goldman Sachs these days (unless you are still making big dollops of money, that is). A former employee has, famously, come out with a fairly spectacular rant about his old firm. Some might regard this as a sign of speaking truth to power, others might say that if this man really felt as he did, he perhaps could have quit the Wall Street giant earlier than he did. It adds to the gaiety of nations. Even the Daily Mash website has got into the act. (I love that site). And Michael
…continue Goldman Sachs’ little local difficulty

“Loaned into existence …”

I link a lot to the sayings and doings of Steve Baker MP (that being the last time I mentioned him here), so this time I will be brief, and only say that I like the phrase “new money being loaned into existence”. The piece this phrase appears in is entitled Could this be a second crisis of state socialism? If you are already saying to yourself something along the lines of: “yes I rather think it could be”, you will, you will be unamazed to learn, find yourself in agreement with Mr Baker.

Samizdata quote of the day

The maths doesn’t add up; this is just sinking capital into a loss making project. If you’re going to use the power of the state to do that, then you shouldn’t be surprised that this country is getting poorer.

– Steve Baker MP denounces the plan for a new stretch of high speed rail, quoted (behind a registration wall) at the Financial Times.

I make this today’s QotD here not in spite of Guido having already featured it as his quote of today (and maybe also of the next few days) but because of this. Baker’s soundbite is getting around.
…continue Samizdata quote of the day

Gordon Kerr continues to talk quietly

When I heard Gordon Kerr speak in the House of Commons a week ago, I wished that he had done so with a microphone attached. Very early this morning he spoke in public again and this time he did have a microphone attached, because he was on Bloomberg Television. Turn up the volume on your computer and you’ll find it a lot easier to hear what he said this morning than I did last week.

Kerr confirmed my definite impression that the Austrianist team is now starting to win this argument. (By “this argument”, I mean, approximately speaking, this argument.)

…continue Gordon Kerr continues to talk quietly

Detlev Schlichter in House of Commons Committee Room 7

Yesterday afternoon, I attended the meeting at the House of Commons that I flagged up here a few days earlier. It was a fairly low key affair, attended by about thirty people or more. Not being a regular attender of such events, I can’t really be sure what it all amounted to. Things happen at meetings that you don’t see. Minds get changed, in silence. Connections are made, afterwards. You do not see everything.

But what I think I saw was this.

The first thing to clarify is that this was the Detlev Schlichter show. Steve Baker MP was a
…continue Detlev Schlichter in House of Commons Committee Room 7

Monetary breakdown in the House of Commons on Tuesday

Yes, on Tuesday 11th, at around teatime, at the House of Commons, Steve Baker MP, Tim Evans and Detlev Schlichter (the links because both of the gents in the bold and blue lettering have had recent (favourable) mentions here) will be asking: Is the global economy heading for monetary breakdown?

I’m guessing the answer is going to be: yes. Although, I’m already imagining a comedy sketch where the first two say, actually, we’ve changed our minds, the answer is no. The world’s currencies are all absolutely in the pink. Quantitative Easing is working a treat. We can all relax. And
…continue Monetary breakdown in the House of Commons on Tuesday

Kevin Dowd tells it like it is

Earlier this evening I attended a talk given by Kevin Dowd, organised by the Adam Smith Institute. It was being videoed, and although it may be of rather dubious technical quality (an air conditioning machine was making very strange noises), a video will, I was assured, be appearing on line. [LATER: Now available, here.]

In the past I have suspected Dowd of failing to do justice to the gravity of the world’s financial circumstances, by being a little too precise in his reform proposals, but there was not even that sort of optimism in Dowd’s speech this evening, which spelt
…continue Kevin Dowd tells it like it is

Forthcoming events – Jésus Huerta de Soto tomorrow evening and Positive Money in November

Incoming from Sam Bowman of the Cobden Centre (and also the Research Manager and Blogmeister at the Adam Smith Institute – most recent blog posting here):

This Thursday 28th October, the world’s leading economist of the Austrian school – Jésus Huerta de Soto – will be giving the first annual Hayek Lecture on the topic “Financial Crisis and Economic Recession”. The lecture is a great chance to hear about the Austrian Business Cycle Theory from its leading living theorist. It’s free, no advance tickets are needed. It starts at 6:30pm and full details are available here.

That event has already
…continue Forthcoming events – Jésus Huerta de Soto tomorrow evening and Positive Money in November

Samizdata quote of the day

What’s wrong with capitalism is that the banking system is socialist.

– Steve Baker MP talking on Cobden Centre Radio. Blog posting by interviewer and CCR boss Andy Duncan here. Listen here. It lasts twenty six minutes. That money quote comes just over half way into it.

A shot across the bows of fractional reserve banking from the Cobden Centre crowd

Over the weekend, Tim Evans, who has been a friend of mine for about a quarter of a century, and who is now part of the Cobden Centre ruling junta (listen to a recent and relevant interview with Tim Evans about that by going here), has been ringing me and emailing me about this, which is a so-called Ten Minute Bill (I think that’s what they call it) which Douglas Carswell MP and Steve Baker MP will be presenting to the House of Commons this Wednesday, just after Prime Minister’s Question Time.

Ten Minute Bills seldom pass. But they are
…continue A shot across the bows of fractional reserve banking from the Cobden Centre crowd

Honest money in the House of Commons

Steve Baker MP’s maiden speech.

Tried to finish a longer piece involving that link, but failed. There’s the link anyway. Now rushing out to a meeting organised by the very organisation that published that blog posting. Such is life.