Tuesday, April 21, 2009

QUOTES: John Maynard Keynes

If you owe your bank a hundred pounds, you have a problem. But if you owe a million, it has.

--As quoted in The Economist (13 February 1982), p. 11

It is generally agreed that casinos should, in the public interest, be inaccessible and expensive. And perhaps the same is true of Stock Exchanges.

--The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (1935)p. 159

The day is not far off when the economic problem will take the back seat where it belongs, and the arena of the heart and the head will be occupied or reoccupied, by our real problems — the problems of life and of human relations, of creation and behaviour and religion.

--First Annual Report of the Arts Council (1945-1946)

The long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we are all dead. Economists set themselves too easy, too useless a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only tell us that when the storm is past the ocean is flat again.

--A Tract on Monetary Reform (1923) Ch. 3; many have thought this meant Keynes supported short terms gains against long term economic performance, but he was actually criticizing the belief that inflation would acceptably control itself without government intervention.

The decadent international but individualistic capitalism in the hands of which we found ourselves after the war is not a success. It is not intelligent. It is not beautiful. It is not just. It is not virtuous. And it doesn't deliver the goods.

--National self-sufficiency (1933) Section 3, republished in Collected Works Vol. 11 (1982).

It is ideas, not vested interests, which are dangerous for good or evil.

--The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (1935)Ch. 24 "Concluding Notes"

"To make sure the economy doesn't collapse, I've abandoned free market principles to save the free market system."
--George W. Bush, CNN interview, December 16, 2008 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MI53fHNygpI

1 comment:

Ann said...

This puzzles me: "It is ideas, not vested interests, which are dangerous for good or evil."
IMHO, vested interests are frequently disguised as principled ideas to gather noisy adherents. For instance, the "tea parties" which were populated by people who have higher taxes under Republicans than under Democrats but who seriously believe that the Republican party's IDEA-L is limiting taxation. (yeah, it is - limit taxes on the wealthiest citizens, and rob the poorer to fund the rich). An "idea" by itself is less than air, but invest it with powerful self-interest and then it becomes evil.