Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

Printing some responses from readers to my post from yesterday about the slippery politics of MMT. From TPM Reader PJ

I read with interest your thoughts on MMT, and am in the kind of academic circles where people will give talks where they think about and discuss MMT as part of some suite of solutions to the excesses or problems of late capitalism (or even straight up liberalism, in the conventional sense). I think perhaps both you and Matt are focusing too much on the practicalities of MMT rather than its rhetorical function, though there might be reasons to maintain the skepticism, there’s another possibility about policy facilitation therein.

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Here’s a minor or perhaps not so minor point to keep in mind as we get set for Michael Cohen’s marathon week on Capitol Hill.

President Trump was widely criticized for repeatedly calling for law enforcement action against members of Michael Cohen’s family, particularly his father-in-law, a man named Fima Shusterman, an emigrant from what is now Ukraine. Cohen even claimed, not unreasonably, that Trump was threatening or at least encouraging others to perhaps endanger his family. The fact that a sitting President would do either of these things is a disgrace and more clear evidence of his unfitness for office.

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British PM Theresa May has announced today that if her latest Brexit proposal fails Parliament will vote on delaying Brexit or proceeding to a no-deal Brexit. The failure of her latest plan seems highly likely, if not certain. That would simply match every other plan she’s cobbled together. I have not followed the inner workings of each of these deals to have much ability to predict. The basic issue has been clear for a while. There’s no majority for any actual deal since the whole thing was sold on false pretenses, with false promises and none of the challenging obstacles in view.

But if Parliament votes for a delay, it’s hard for me to see how that doesn’t sound the death knell of Brexit altogether. It has been crystal clear that there’s no parliamentary majority for any actual Brexit plan, though perhaps the concept could get a bare majority. Without the hammer of a deadline, why will it move forward at all?

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In a plea for a lenient sentence Paul Manafort’s lawyers told Judge Amy Berman Jackson today that Manafort had spent “a lifetime promoting American democratic values and assisting emerging democracies to adopt reforms necessary to become a part of Western society.”

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Chances of Senate GOPs bucking President Trump on emergency declaration slip from unlikely to all but impossible.

I find that as often as not I agree with Matt Bruenig on policy matters. But those points of agreement can be obscured for me by differences of temperament and politics. Here though I find myself entirely in agreement with him on something called Modern Monetary Theory. You may not even have heard this phrase before. But you should and probably will soon. If you haven’t, you should familiarize yourself with it because it bulks very large in many current debates within the Democratic Party that you have heard about. It’s a big deal. Bruenig aptly describes it as “about using word games to make people believe that the US can have Northern European levels of government spending without Northern European levels of taxation.”

It’s not easy to simply explain what MMT is because it operates at several distinct and not always closely related levels.

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I write a lot about our membership programs and how subscriptions are now the core of our business. There is a subset of our readers who are both interested in and have the means to support our operation at a higher level than a Prime or Prime AF membership. We know because a lot of you have told us. But first, if you are a Prime or Prime AF subscriber you are 1000% good with us! Your subscription is what makes TPM possible. Literally. Prime and Prime AF memberships make up over 50% of our revenue. This message is solely for those who would like to and easily can support what we do at a higher level. If you’re in that category please click to read more and join me after the jump.

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