m of care – may 18


debt (book) – david graeber – w/hudson on debt



Our reading group on “Debt: The First 5,000 Years” has been meeting twice a month since October and is now coming to an end with two final meetings left. On May 18, we will discuss debt with an economic Michael Hudson.

Michael Hudson is President of The Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends (ISLET), a Wall Street Financial Analyst, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. He is the author of Super-Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire (Editions 1968, 2003, 2021), ‘and forgive them their debts’ (2018), J is for Junk Economics (2017), Killing the Host (2015), The Bubble and Beyond (2012), Trade, Development and Foreign Debt (1992 & 2009) and of The Myth of Aid (1971), amongst many others.

ISLET engages in research regarding domestic and international finance, national income and balance-sheet accounting with regard to real estate. We also engage in the economic history of the ancient Near East.

Michael acts as an economic advisor to governments worldwide including China, Iceland and Latvia on finance and tax law. He gives presentations on various topics at conferences and meetings and can be booked here. Listen to some of his many radio interviews to hear his hyperspeed analysis of the geo-political machinations of global economics. 


notes/quotes from meeting:

michael hudson: it was david did the publicist ness that got me where i am.. it was a dovetailing of two diff approaches.. he was really a man of the people.. he would immediately melt into the crowd.. incredible ability to talk

michael r in chat: [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1rlIXAUGans This video shows Michael Hudson and David Graeber (&Guy Standing) in conversation]

michael hudson: debts can’t be repaid.. so now working w several people working on debt cancellation.. rising energy and food prices force countries to make a choice.. pay debts or put own growth first.. working w belgium econs on debt cancellation and esp w chinese to put together how this can be done

mh: i had prepared a history of econ thought.. they said only people in political cults have credentials for that.. now not teaching history of econ thought anymore.. i wanted to write my own history focusing on econ rent as unearned income.. fin capatilism.. rolling back to free and go back to econ under landlords.. except now rent is for paying interests and taken over by bankers and fin sectors.. they finance real estate.. and tech monopolies.. i want to revise classical econ..

mh: i don’t think either of us (david or i) made the jump.. i forgot the utter evil of the catholic church .. right down to yesterday.. the utter evil of the popes.. crusades were not christianity.. they led popes to say.. we have to finance the wars.. so need a band that supports.. so get rid of church and anti usury law.. let’s say debt is good.. ends w changing forgive our debts to forgive our sins.. pope said can’t have christianity unless kill everybody that reads bible.. because they’ll find out (what we’re doing)

steve: last ch in debt.. post 71 to unknown.. you’ve shown battle not between democracy and anti demo.. but oligarchy and autocracy.. now that we’re going to more virtual/credit econ.. to graeber creates a possibility for less violence.. yet he says elsewhere.. like there never was a west.. 2 conditions to democracy 1\ have to have people that want to act democratically 2\ have to have strong govt to bring about demo changes

mh: that’s a trick question.. concept of demo and autocracy today has gone way beyond what it was 5 yrs ago.. value of studying classical antiquity.. aristotle .. democracy devolves into oligarchy.. people wanting to redistribute debts where called tyrants.. so became a bad word.. so democracy ends up leading to fin capitalism..

simona: i have a perplexity about important point david makes in debt.. credit money led to systems based on trust.. so less violence.. but i think today money based on violence based on trust.. what we have today.. in long distance is impersonal.. while i think credit david was talking about was based on personal relationships.. can you clarify

mh: the people who are willing to kill other people are people who don’t earn their money or produce.. anyone who threaten their free lunch.. it’s the privatizers that are violence.. not the victims.. i guess that’s part of nature..

christian: many in this group looking for an alt.. have to wait.. or be lucky enough.. hoping all this is working up to something

mh: timing is all important.. now econ reaching debt limits.. just like climate reaching limit.. us planners recognize this.. so exploiting colonies in europe.. i think france, german, italy going to be looking (deprived).. our ideal is ukraine.. privatize everything.. et al.. no systematic alt being put forward.. so all of us together have to create a critical mass of why econ isn’t working.. and how to create this alt.. t i don’t see it being able to be created in us.. easier in eurasia and global south.. because existing society so debt ridden can’t go any further along lines it’s currently structured..

need 1st/most: means to undo our hierarchical listening to self/others/nature so we can org around legit needs

michael: back to simona’s question.. one of david’s these on interpersonal credit.. f to f not bad.. no huge accum of debt.. gold coins create no need for relationship.. alliance between banking system and war.. can you talk about collapse of gold in 71..

mh: collapse of gold means nothing for this.. david is a people person.. he was talking about relationships.. his point of ref was antrho ch’s he wrote.. his solution of interpersonal debts down’t apply to corp/govt debt.. he’s not talking about whole econ.. using interpersonal as a metaphor.. ‘wouldn’t it be nice if all of society was like that’

nika: in chat [roman debt was huge]

mh: need credit to fight a war.. get people on your side by saying you’re under attack.. now debt key to money.. not gold/silver.. money only used to pay debts.. solving individual debt problem doesn’t solve global debt.. have to look at whole econ as global system.. do you agree nika

nika: not really.. but maybe let’s continue in the next session.. i totally disagree.. but it doesn’t matter that i disagree.. it’s really interesting what you’re saying..

mh: govts are not going to be as nice to each other as people david were talking about in madagascar

steve: this was final of debt.. taking summer off for reading groups..





from debt (book)

m of care – oct 20 – debt (book) – part 1

m of care – nov 3 – part 2 – ch 1-2

m of care – nov 17 – part 3 – ch 3-4

m of care – dec 1 – part 4 – ch 5-6

m of care – dec 15 – part 5 – ch 6

m of care – jan 5 – part 6 – ch 7

m of care – jan 19 – part 7 – ch 8

m of care – feb 2 – part 8 – ch 9

m of care – feb 16 – part 9 – ch 10

m of care – mar 2 – part 10 – ch 10-11

m of care – mar 16 – part 11 – ch 10-11

m of care – apr 6 – part 12 – ch 11-12

m of care – apr 20 – part 13 – ch 12

m of care – may 18 – part 14 – w/hudson on debt




museum of care meetings

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