Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I have been hammering for a long time on the fact that the money as a thing conceptual metaphor is the greatest obstacle to democratic Keynesianism. Any autocrat can be a Keynesian.

De facto gold standard

Let's not forget that money as a thing is a powerful metaphor people use to relate to the economic system, and that, moreover, it applies outside the financial sector. And, as Galbraith said, the process by which money is created is so simple that the mind is repelled. I sometimes wonder whether the fiat money system wouldn't unravel in a confidence crisis if ordinary people abandoned the money as a thing metaphor.
Eurozone Aims For Mars
It's worse than that. Europe spent the 20 years after the end of the Gold Standard trying and failing to maintain a fixed exchange regime. Also, prior to the Great Depression, European Countries were central to the failure of the previous incarnation of the Gold Standard, both contributing to causing the crisis and to prolong it. Somehow Continental European economic policy makers just don't get fiat money and are enamored of "money as a thing" common-sense economics.
Ferguson hates on Keynes
A lot of people come into Environmental Economics from engineering or natural science, and such a background predisposes one against social convention ("fiat" money, nominal accounting) and for objective measures (real accounting, hence commodity money, gold standards, and thermodynamic money standards). "Money as a thing" is one of the most engrained concepts in our culture and it dovetails with the engineer/scientist tendency to prefer a commodity standard for money.

See also what Paul Samuelson says here after 1'26"

Also: TIME TO DROP THAT OLD-TIME RELIGION by Randy Wray (April 30, 2010)

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 1st, 2014 at 06:54:02 AM EST

Others have rated this comment as follows:


Occasional Series