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10 economic myths

Does repeating a thing make it true? The followers of mainstream economic dogma must surely think ‘Yes’. After the financial crash of 2008 and the malaise ever since, they haven’t changed their tune much. Their prescriptions don’t work but the patients – you or me – are still being dosed with ‘freemarket’ medicine. We’ve worked on this edition in the spirit of providing something of an antidote. The economic bottom line is inevitable, say the powers that be. Just the way things are. Well, we – and an ever-growing legion of dissenting economists and fed-up-to-the-back-teeth members of the general public – say, ‘No’. These cherished myths are causing real harm and we need to ditch them.

December 2015, Issue 488

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  • 10 economic myths we need to junk

    10 economic myths we need to junk

    A brief introduction from Dinyar Godrej and David Ransom.

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  • Myth 1: Austerity will lead to 'jobs and growth'

    Myth 1: Austerity will lead to 'jobs and growth'

    It's wrong to sell austerity as a cure for economic woes, says Dinyar Godrej.

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  • Economic Myth 2: Deficit reduction is the only way out of a slump

    Economic Myth 2: Deficit reduction is the only way out of a slump

    Don't rely on those who caused the crash to resolve it, argues David Ransom.

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  • Myth 3: Taxing the rich scares off investors and stalls economic performance

    Myth 3: Taxing the rich scares off investors and stalls economic performance

    Taxation creates prosperity just as much as private enterprise, says David Ransom.

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  • Myth 4: Economic migrants are a drain on rich world economies

    Myth 4: Economic migrants are a drain on rich world economies

    Migration follows a demand for labour - and benefits the receiving country, writes Dinyar Godrej.

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  • Myth 5: The private sector is more efficient than the public sector

    Myth 5: The private sector is more efficient than the public sector

    There is no evidence of greater efficiency, explains Dinyar Godrej.

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  • Myth 6: Fossil fuels are more economically viable than renewables

    Myth 6: Fossil fuels are more economically viable than renewables

    Not if you look at the environmental costs, says Dinyar Godrej.

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  • Myth 7: Financial regulation will destroy a profitable banking sector

    Myth 7: Financial regulation will destroy a profitable banking sector

    Why should financial markets be accountable only to themselves? asks David Ransom.

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  • Myth 8: Organized labour is regressive

    Myth 8: Organized labour is regressive

    David Ransom argues that the opposite is actually true.

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  • Myth 9: Everyone has to pay their debts

    Myth 9: Everyone has to pay their debts

    We need debt management not reduction, says Dinyar Godrej.

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  • Myth 10: Growth is the only way

    Myth 10: Growth is the only way

    Dinyar Godrej explains why we need to find another way, fast.

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  • 'I predict...'

    'I predict...'

    Economists don't always get it right...

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  • Cry me a river

    Cry me a river

    A poetic and heartfelt plea to restore a wounded planet. By Suprabha Seshan.

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  • In search of lost soldiers

    Families of missing POWs are still waiting for answers after 44 years, says Jas Uppal.

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  • #ShellNo: the triumph of the Kayaktivists

    #ShellNo: the triumph of the Kayaktivists

    We do not always win - but sometimes we prevail. Mark Engler celebrates a daring victory.

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  • Mixed Media: Films

    Mixed Media: Films

    This month's film reviews.

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  • Mixed Media: Books

    This month's book reviews.

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  • Mixed Media: Music

    Mixed Media: Music

    This month's music reviews.

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  • Country profile: North Korea

    Country profile: North Korea

    Aidan Foster-Carter looks beyond the clichés of the secretive state.

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  • In the eye of a Twitter storm

    In the eye of a Twitter storm

    Steve Parry experiences Trolling and is still recovering.

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