Articles

I have served on the Pembroke, Ontario Daily Observer’s community editorial board since early 2012 and have written a number of articles which are presented below. Since 2014 some of the articles have also been featured on the Mises Canada website, mises.ca.

Why what happens in Greece matters to Canadians

Looking at why a default in Greece could, thanks to credit default swap derivatives, lead to another global financial crisis. Published March 10th, 2012

The Great Deleveraging

Explaining the 4 processes by which an economy reduces its debt burden (inflation, write-offs, wealth transfers to the poor, and austerity) and why certain processes are favoured by policymakers over others. Published May 19th, 2012

Confidence and Lies

An analysis of the LIBOR scandal and the culture that spawned it. Published July 28th, 2012

The Allure of Shortcuts

Looking at the Ontario government’s decision to pass back-to-work legislation instead of engaging in negotiations with teachers. Published October 6th, 2012

Getting beyond envelopes of cash

Comparing the obvious corruption being uncovered by Quebec’s Charbonneau Commission to the much more damaging but less obvious corruption taking place in the financial markets. Published December 15th, 2012

Keeping the Ponzi Scheme Spinning

Examining efforts by the Mortgage Brokers’ Association to extend mortgage loan terms in the name of housing affordability. Published March 16th, 2013

Fake it til you make it

A skeptical view of then-current data pointing to an economic recovery. Published June 8th, 2013

Regulation 274

An analysis of the unintended consequences of a law intended to ensure fairness in teacher hiring. Published August 31st, 2013

The View from the Top

An article arguing that we are likely near a market top in the bond market and therefore in all other interest-sensitive financial assets as quantitative easing gets less and less effective. Published November 16th, 2013

Rules, Responsibility and Freedom

An article linking the outcry directed at the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority officers who let a youth board a flight to Mexico with his family after confiscating a pipe bomb he had forgotten he had put in his camera case to the reluctance of administrators at York University to deny a student’s request to be excused from doing course work with female students due to his religious beliefs. Published January 25th, 2014.

Smash Asset Price Inflation Too!

An article comparing the fierce efforts made by governments to combat wage and price inflation in the early 1980s to the desperate efforts being made by governments to encourage asset price inflation today. Published March 8th, 2014.

The Demise of the Dollar

An article looking at the possibility of the dollar losing its global reserve currency status as a result of the U.S. government’s pursuit of higher inflation intended to support the banking system. Published May 17th, 2014.

Can a Leopard Change Its Spots

An article that examines the benefits of having bureaucracies feel competitive pressure. Published Wednesday October 22nd, 2014.

Easy Money Blood Thinners

An article that compares zero percent interest rates and quantitative easing to giving blood thinners to a patient with atherosclerosis, when what is needed is major reform to unblock the arteries. Published July 26th, 2014.

The End of Debt-Based Economics

An article (published under the title If something can’t go on forever, it won’t) that compares heavily indebted industrialized nations to heavily indebted individuals who need additional credit in order to continue to appear solvent. Published October 4th, 2014.

Hold the Frankincense and Myrrh

An article that looks at the connection between two events from the fall: the Bank of Japan’s decision to engage in rampant money printing at the end of October and the Swiss Gold Initiative referendum held at the end of November. Published December 20th, 2014.

The Madness of Negative Interest Rates

An article (published under the title Time for some mattress padding) that explains why borrowers are now paid to borrow money in Switzerland and some of the Nordic countries, and explores the likely consequences of this development. Published February 21st, 2015.

The Elbe and the Dnieper

An article (published under the title Usury, once in control, will wreck any nation) that looks at how the Bank of Canada stopped behaving like a Crown Corporation run in the public interest in the 1970s in order to satisfy the demands of private commercial banks, and how the actions of these banks have led directly to many of the financial and even geopolitical problems facing the world today. Published April 25, 2015.

How to Eliminate Teachers Strikes

An article that looks at the monopoly problems inherent in public education and suggests a competitive way forward. Published June 27th, 2015.

Keep your old dimes safe

An article that looks at Gresham’s Law with reference to threats to eliminate cash in order to impose negative interest rates. Published August 29th, 2015.

Trick and Treat

A seasonal article that looks at the trick of credit creation and the treat of rising asset prices with a nod to the concept of ‘the febezzle.’ Published October 31st, 2015.

Ending the War on Terror

Why do Western nations continue to respond to acts of terror with bombing, when it is clear that the acts of terror were committed precisely to provoke such a response? Published January 2nd, 2016.

In the end, deflation will win

Low interest rates pull both investment and spending forward. After 8 years of interest rates near zero, what happens when increased productive capacity meets consumer exhaustion? Published February 20th, 2016.

School Closures

Over time, centralized systems established in the name of greater efficiency result in higher costs and consequently reduced services. Published May 7th, 2016 as “Can’t afford the Caddy? Keep walking.”

The Tragic Consequences of Success

The end of the Cold War, instead of bringing the end of history, instead permitted Western international institutions to act as unaccountable rackets, causing people in both developing and, increasingly, developed nations to reject the global system. Published July 23rd, 2016.

Monetary Pollution

Guaranteed basic income schemes (currently attracting interest as a means of addressing rising inequality) are money printing for the poor. Given that rising inequality is a consequence of money printing for the rich, one wonders whether it might be better to simply stop printing money. Published October 8th, 2016.

Hypernormalisation

Just as during the final decades of the Soviet Union, our leaders, while aware that the system is not working, are nonetheless unable to imagine an alternative and so are reduced to pretending that it is and convincing (or coercing) citizens to do likewise. Published December 31st, 2016.

Conservative Renaissance

The Conservative Party of Canada must embrace its small business roots and expand opportunities for entrepreneurs and small business and roll back the power of monopolies and other agents of the ‘rentier economy’ in order to regain political legitimacy. Published March 18th, 2017.

Cheques that can never be cashed

The U.S. dollar relies upon foreign purchases of U.S. Treasury bonds to retain its value. As it is now impossible to raise interest rates to attract foreign buyers, it has become necessary to create global instability so as to induce foreigners to buy dollar assets as a ‘safe haven.’ Published June 3rd, 2017.

Sticking the arson charge on a couple of patsies

Current geopolitical tension between the U.S.A. and North Korea can perhaps be best understood as an attempt to provoke a confrontation which would allow those in charge of our central banks and banking system to escape responsibility for making the collapse of our corrupt fiat money financial system inevitable. Published August 19th, 2017.

Is Korea Just a Smokescreen

Staying with the geopolitical tensions in East Asia, can they perhaps be best understood as an indirect means for the U.S.A. to apply pressure on China in order to preserve U.S. dollar hegemony in the face of recent efforts by the Chinese to establish markets for both gold and oil denominated in yuan? Published November 4th, 2017.

Postcard from the Holy Land

Reflections on survival and resilience written while spending Christmas in Israel. Published January 13th, 2018.

The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow

In honour of St. Patrick’s Day, an examination of crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin from the point of view of a Leprechaun. Would a Leprechaun want either crypto-currencies or fiat currencies in his pot at the end of the rainbow? Published March 17th, 2018.

Corruption, Money and the Banks

Corruption corrodes our ability to trust one another and thereby impedes our ability to act collectively to solve common problems. The corruption of money over the past 50 years has inflicted the most damage of all. Published May 19th, 2018.

Trade Deficits and the American Empire

American trade deficits are best understood as tributary payments to the imperial power. Trump’s attempts to eliminate such deficits will only serve to hasten the end of the American Empire. Published July 21st, 2018.

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