“The increasingly elitist Democratic Party has grown increasingly comfortable over the last decade or so [supporting policies that harm domestic U.S. private sector workers] on trade and especially immigration policy.”
From Alan Tonelson in ImPolitic
If you want to start a (hopefully verbal only) fight about American politics, one good way is to tell a Democrat that his or her party – and especially its powerful progressive wing – has been abandoning the country’s private sector working class in favor of what New York Times columnist Ross Douthat just called “the winners of globalization, from wealthy suburbanites to Wall Street and Silicon Valley elites….” (Here’s some polling evidence for this proposition.)
So it’s more than a little interesting that if you take this position, you’ve recently gotten some devastating ammunition from no less than one of progressivism’s leading intellectual lights – economist Stephanie Kelton.
Kelton has achieved renown for her pioneering “Modern Monetary Theory” take on economic policy. As she has explained, it holds that “Governments in nations that maintain control of their own currencies — like Japan, Britain and the United States, and unlike Greece, Spain and Italy — can increase spending without needing to raise taxes or borrow currency from other countries or investors.”
Naturally, Democrats of most stripes have seized on this argument to varying extents to justify running much bigger federal budget deficits to deal much more ambitiously with a whole host of national problems – to engineering an adequate recovery from the CCP Virus-induced recession to remedying major social and economic ills that they believe dangerously plagued the economy before the pandemic.
One aspect of Kelton’s views, though, has been widely ignored, and it’s this stance that led her last week to support explicitly measures with proven records of harming domestic U.S. private sector workers but with which the increasingly elitist Democratic Party has grown increasingly comfortable over the last decade or so – on trade and especially immigration policy.
The ignored Kelton stance: on inflation. As she has specified (in the column linked above), “Politics aside, the only economic constraints currency-issuing states face are inflation and the availability of labor and other material resources in the real economy.” And in the author’s latest column, she argues that it’s precisely the appearance of these threats today that require the Biden administration to embrace unfettered trade and mass immigration policies.
Read more of this essay here.