En hyldest til MarkGB

water drop

Negative renter. Bankdirektører, der viste sig ikke blot at være Too big to fail, men også Too big to jail. Politikere, der forsøger at sælge nedskæringspolitik som godt for økonomisk vækst. En ulighed, der nu har nået et niveau, som ikke er set siden før finanskrakket i 1929. Kort sagt politikere og meningsdannere, hvis uvidenhed er næsten uden huller, og som konsekvent har nægtet at lære noget som helst af historien.

Hvis alt ovenstående har sat sig som en splint i hjernen på dig, så er MarkGB den bedste til at sætte ord på den absurde tid, vi lever i.

Mark er lidt af en legende på Financial Times’ site, hvor der udspiller sig en omfattende debat i kommentarsporet til artiklerne. Det er svært at formidle, hvor intelligent diskussionen forløber, hvis man kun er vant til danske medier. Enhver artikel bliver kommenteret af et væld af overordentlig vidende mennesker, hvoraf størstedelen er ganske kritiske overfor den redaktionelle linje.

Mark er noget så gammeldags som en ægte fritænker. Han er umulig at sætte i politisk eller ideologisk bås. Han er hverken højre eller venstre. Han er en kapitalist, der kritiserer kapitalismen nådesløst indefra. Han er en internationalist, der er solidt forankret i den walisiske muld. Han påberåber sig stædigt retten til at danne sig sin egen mening. Og så skriver han med en letflydende pen og stor humor.

Jeg kan ikke varmt nok anbefale at besøge hans site, som du finder på www.markgb.com/

Som en smagsprøve på hans stil har jeg fået lov til at gengive et af hans indlæg her – men jeg vil opfordre dig til at teste den ægte vare på hans eget site:

Here’s a proposition from your friendly Central Banker and his chums at Eye, Screw, Ewe and Larf, PR Consultants to the elite:

CB: Mr Smith, you can have a definite £100 to spend now, or a possible £95 in a year’s time – which is it to be? 

Mr S: What do you mean a possible £95 in a year’s time?

CB: Well, while the money is in the bank it isn’t actually yours, it’s a loan to the bank upon which you have a claim; it appears on both sides of their balance sheet as an asset and a liability, dreadfully clever stuff.

Mr S: Well surely that means I can have it whenever I like?

CB: Normally yes, but if the bank goes bust, it’ll be their money at that point, it’s technical but essentially you’ll get bailed in. The derivatives people will get their money first, but the bank will get round to you eventually, so yes you’ll get something…probably.

Mr S: So let me see if I’ve got this right – I’m paying you guys £5 for the privilege of possibly losing up to and including the other £95.

CB: Well I wouldn’t put it that way.

Mr S: Well I would put it that way, give me my money I’m taking it home.

CB: Excellent, you want to spend it now, jolly good for aggregate demand and all that.

Mr S: No – I want to take it home, keep it until I want to buy something; then spend it.

CB: You can’t do that I’m afraid; we have a cashless society now – Larry Summers wants to protect you from terrorists and drug dealers.

Mr S: Well you can tell Larry Summers to go…(fill in the blanks to your own liking dear readers).

John Stepek, the editor of MoneyWeek coined a splendid phrase for negative interest rates in an article last week: “The weaponisation of compound interest”. 

Here’s a more traditional one – theft.

There is no way on God’s earth that a free market would ever result in negative interest rates. If anyone had asked you ten years ago if you’d stand for this – you’d have said ‘no’. The fact that this seems almost normal to many people is an indication of just how insidious these moronic policies are. We are like frogs in a pot being boiled alive 1 degree at a time. Time to get out of the pot before we’re all too drowsy to notice.

Mark spænder vidt. Hans nekrolog over Muhammad Ali er et smukt og følsomt portræt. Læs den, selv hvis du ikke interesserer dig for boksning.

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