I engaged in a discussion on LinkedIn concerning Bill Still but that is also ranging a bit as a platform for promoting my real-time idea for regulating the money supply and price inflation/deflation to zero.
Here's my first comment there:
I have mixed emotions because we have a mixed economy and Bill has taken to repeating that he's not a socialist or for socialism.
United States Notes (USN), which he and I advocate, is socialist money in a sense (when taken in and of itself). Using USN to the complete exclusion of Federal Reserve Notes, which exclusion I whole-heartedly endorse, would not render the US a socialist state, per se, but still mixed.
Also, Bill Still says he's for a Bank of CA along the lines of the Bank of North Dakota, which is decidedly socialistic (albeit within a still mixed-economy). It's a matter of degree, not either/or.
Further, Bill is for as much decentralization as practicable. What is the difference between a highly decentralized capitalism versus a highly decentralized socialism? It doesn't take much to blur the lines. A small town could easily be a one-company town that is employee/citizen-owned. I see nothing wrong with that at all.
As far as decentralizing, I see no advantage to doing that to the exclusion of retaining, or even enhancing, hubs of information. A central government (the US federal government in this case) could, and should, act as a disseminator of best practices. This would be bottom-up and top-across-and-down at the same time, so to speak.
There's plenty more I could say on this, but I think that's enough for now.
Tom Usher replying to John Hermann:
"The taxpayer does not fund federal public debt interest payments." Who does, more debt? Explain.
I won't reproduce John's reply; but suffice it to say, it was the standard MMT (Chartalist) reply. Let me say that I agree with much of Chartalism but don't agree with superimposing it on ancient history. It's a model that can be used to explain much, but it should not be used to the exclusion of other contexts. Taxes do pay the interest on the National Debt. There's just no point in arguing otherwise even while taxes are used to regulate. Why it's not easy to see both at the same time is something John would have to address, but that's not my motive over there right now.
Your first paragraph above is right on. As for the issues raised by your second, there is a solution vastly superior to the Federal Reserve (which I believe I can say, based upon your views expressed here, with which you do not agree) and also vastly superior to Dennis Kucinich's and Bill Still's respective plans. That is to peg the money supply in real time to inflationary (price) and deflationary signals and to reduce and/or increase (government spending on real productivity projects wanted and needed by the whole people) supply/price accordingly.
Eventually (hopefully in short order), the basket of goods used as a gauge could be expanded to include all transactions.
This would all be accompanied by as much democracy in the workplace and employee/citizen ownership as possible.
Bill Still is well aware of issuing all money as a sovereign government, but Bill can speak for himself on it.
Now, as for there being no possibility of bankruptcy, that depends upon whether one believes hyperinflation constitutes a decided form of bankruptcy. I suggest that it most certainly does. It appears obvious. A thoroughly hyper-inflated currency ends up being able to pay for nothing.
As for the notion that taxes and bonds are solely for monetarism, that would suggest that taxes and government borrowing didn't exist before such monetarism, which is also clearly not the case.
Then, Richard Ballantyne joined the discussion. Richard had sent me an email concerning the issue. Richard had read my post, "Bill Still on Monetary Reform: "SR 23: Baby Birds," and wanted to discuss the use of PID's as a means to accomplish my stated goal.
Here's my comment:
Hi Richard Ballantyne,
Thank you for joining in here. Ever since you mention the PID idea to me the other day, I've been running over it in the back of my mind. I think it's an excellent starting analogy.
Do you think the PID itself could take the form of software in typical hand-held devices, such as cellphones or even embedded within one device? What are the security risks? Shouldn't we have a separate Internet for it, much the way the military has much of its traffic off the public Internet we're on right now? We've seen some bad news recently about such devices and key-logging, etc.
Could the system be dual-entry: seller and buyer at the same time?
With it being open-source, it could still be highly encrypted, correct? Couldn't we each have our own public key known to Treasury only but authenticated by our private key so that the transactions would not be vulnerable? With enough interest and enthusiasm by the open-source community, I should think that staying out ahead of hacking would not be insurmountable.
Our government would be the clearinghouse for all of this. What sort of hardware by them would be required? I think aside from the stock market trading, Facebook and Google and such prove that volume and number crunching would not be an obstacle.
How large a demonstration project might be envisioned before it could be scaled up not in Beta?
Do you think that an open-source group could be formed even now to begin working on an outline of the system -- to discuss the various aspects and difficulties and means to simplify, etc.?