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Issuing bonds in the period in which the pound is strong relative to the dollar and euro in an interest rate environment in which a guaranteed low return from a bond is very attractive to investors is the 'no brainer' thing to do. It must be approved through referendum in which the voter will vote, knowing the amount of bonds and their specific purposes(education, health etc.) By having a referendum will mot only guarantee their passage but give cover to the politicians who must propose it.

The public is used to borrowing long term mortgages on their homes and will recognize easily the benefits of masive bond financing as long as the society will be improved. The bonds issued must guarantee the investments in public services will improve the society significantly. In order to achieve this the financing in the UK nust be done on a programmed, massive basis over many years. Unfortunately without a referendum; it will never be done on the scale needed because the Bank of England was made 'independent' and the banks' governors and benefactors won't approve.  A referendum may be able to negate any pressure coming from the Bank of England but it would have been much easier to issue the necessary bonds if the Bank of England had remained answerable to a political party, in this case-Labour.

Your ideas of how to finance are noble but not 'realpolitik'. Massive focused bond financing of the 'state' is what built the infrastructure of the state of California through the massively financed university education system which is the most dynamic in the world having created or contributed to most of the improvements in our societies.

by An American in London on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:24:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
the massively financed university education system which is the most dynamic in the world having created or contributed to most of the improvements in our societies.

Really?

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:26:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It has contributed to a lot of research, and the University of California system is one of the best research universities in the world (as well as the biggest producer of weapons of mass destruction). Having seen the University from the inside, my opinion is that as far as undergraduate education goes (and the UC is written into the Constitution of the State of California) the UC is the biggest fraud in the State of California.

Bush is a symptom, not the disease.
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:37:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Doesn't matter if you think the undergraduate is a fraud. It attracts enough intelligent people from all over the world in both the undergraduate and graduate schools that both the graduates and the dropouts have started most of the dynamic industries of the latter part of the 20th century-computer, biosciences, etc. etc. Unfortunately the bi product of tens of thousands of engineers and scientists being from the University System was aerospace and defense.
by An American in London on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:51:44 AM EST
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Aerospace and Defense was not a byproduct, it has been the major Keynesian driver of the US economy since WWII, and the fact that the UC has managed most of the Department of Energy National Laboratories was a cause, not an effect, of its growth as a University.

Bush is a symptom, not the disease.
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:54:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I agree, mostly.
Your ideas of how to finance are noble but not 'realpolitik'. Massive focused bond financing of the 'state' is what built the infrastructure of the state of California through the massively financed university education system which is the most dynamic in the world having created or contributed to most of the improvements in our societies.
And then Prop 13 effectively eliminated property taxes, gutting pre-university education and after-school programs. In addition, the habit of raising taxes through propositions earmarking the funds for specific purposes has shrunk the general fund to such an extent that the Governor has no flexibility left. Then the State legislature decided to give people a rebate on their Car tax as long as the budgetary situation allowed it, and when Davis they tried to reverse the situation because education and health care were going through the dogs through underfunding, Arnie replaced him on a platform to repeal the car tax "increase" and expand after-school programs (see above), and immediately went on to call a budget emergency. Gah.

Bush is a symptom, not the disease.
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:34:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
California got bad when Reagan was Governor and the electorate became the 'me generation'. But the integral part of what Gov. Pat Brown( Jerry Brown's father) did in building the state's infrastructuure through bond financing remains in tact.

Bond financing does give the Governor the flexibility to have projects financed as long as he curtails the 'pork'. W3ithout bond financing, California would have been stuck in the 1950's with 10 people running the entire state-seethe film 'Chinatown' and John Huston's character is theepitome of the people who ran California as their own fiefdom.

by An American in London on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:56:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No wonder we're both in London...

Bush is a symptom, not the disease.
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:58:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Exactly. The UK should have massive bond financing through referendum because if focused correctly; it would improve its society a great deal.
by An American in London on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 07:06:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Getting an established political system to accept a greater role of referendums can also be coined unrealistic.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 11:56:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I believe in the case of California an dother states, the "initiatives and ballot measures" originates in the Progressive movement of the early 20th century. One can debate to what extent the US political system was "established" back then.

Bush is a symptom, not the disease.
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 12:01:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"Established" might have been the wrong term, "settled" might have better described what I was searching for.

When politics is a pretty safe career - either in opposition or power - why mess it up with giving the unpredictable people more power?

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 12:28:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There is another way of doing it...

http://www.eurotrib.com/?op=displaystory;sid=2007/5/11/4047/06568

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson

by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 06:57:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, if they made you king but having people invest in their own societies is the only realistic alternative to raising taxes which can't be done or even if taxes are raised; it would never be significant enough when compared to massive bond financing.
by An American in London on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 07:09:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm pointing out that the process of "Napsterisation" inevitably leads this way because these models actually "work" without banks aka credit intermediaries.

The fact that the number of UK LLP's doubled in two years (and no-one knows what is being done with them) is nothing to do with me (well maybe a TINY bit).

What will lead to the widespread adoption of this mechanism is:
(a)it's the best Equity Release mechanism there is, bar none;
(b)it allows entities without share capital eg charities, social enterprises, governments, national and local, to invest without borrowing and MASSIVELY cut their financing costs.

It will happen for sure,because it works better than the alternative: a classic "emergent" phenomenon.

But you can appoint me King as well if you like.;-)

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson

by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Fri May 11th, 2007 at 08:04:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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