nep-pke New Economics Papers
on Post Keynesian Economics
Issue of 2022‒11‒28
four papers chosen by
Karl Petrick
Western New England University

  1. British Public Investment, Government Spending, Housing, and the Industrial Revolution: A Study of Governmental and Social Surplus Absorption By Lambert, Thomas
  2. Business Cycles, Inflation and Unemployment: An MMT perspective By M S, Navaneeth
  3. Growth models and comparative political economy in Latin America By Passos, Nikolas; Morlin, Guilherme Spinato
  4. The Business of Strategic Sabotage By Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan

  1. By: Lambert, Thomas
    Abstract: When it comes to the British Industrial Revolution of the 18th Century, much of the mainstream economics literature has tended to focus on how property rights, limitations on the crown or government, and changes in agricultural and manufacturing techniques have caused a great transformation in the nation’s economic formation. Marxian and other heterodox economics views acknowledge these developments but also emphasize the enclosure movement and the development of a class of people that becomes an exploited proletariat. Both sets of views acknowledge the role of the British government in facilitating the Industrial Revolution, but in doing a review for this paper, there is only a small amount of literature on how government investment and spending and the housing of workers may have helped to spur on or exist simultaneously with the revolution. This is especially true within heterodox schools of thought, and this paper aims to add to the heterodox economics literature by discussing how government investment and spending, and investment in housing, dramatically assist with surplus absorption during the Industrial Revolution, which in turn helps the British economy to achieve greater heights. Datasets that have been developed over the last 15 years or so can be used to illustrate this. Finally, by using the concept of the Baran Ratio, it can be shown that a significant portion of the nation’s economic surplus is absorbed by government spending and investment and housing investment, and much of this in turn would have helped private business investment and spending in absorbing as much of the surplus as possible.
    Keywords: Baran Ratio, government investment and spending, housing, Industrial Revolution, heterodox economics
    JEL: B50 B52 N13 N43
    Date: 2022–10–28
  2. By: M S, Navaneeth
    Abstract: Any modern economy faces the periodic tendency of fluctuations that disrupts the macroeconomic variables leading to massive downturns in economic activity- conceptualized as business cycles. This review article examines the countercyclical policies adopted by Central Banks during recessions in light of the various arguments laid out by Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). Finally, it also looks into the assumptions behind Phillips' curve and what MMT has to offer in terms of inflation targeting
    Keywords: MMT; NAIRU; Phillip's Curve; Business Cycle
    JEL: B50
    Date: 2021–07
  3. By: Passos, Nikolas (Scuola Normale Superiore); Morlin, Guilherme Spinato
    Abstract: The paper analyses the growth models of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, and Mexico since 1996. We depart from the typology proposed by Bizberg (2019) and apply a growth decomposition based on the Sraffian supermultiplier (Freitas and Dweck, 2013). We argue that the growth models perspective, introduced by Baccaro and Pontusson (2016), contributes to understanding the diversities of capitalism in Latin America. We find that the commodities boom oriented the countries towards export-led growth models, especially in Bolivia, Chile, and Mexico. Brazil and Argentina presented a hybrid growth model, with higher household consumption, and government expenditure along with exports growth. After the commodities boom, the export-led model was no longer feasible for commodity exporters. Mexico sustained the existing model, based on low-value-added manufacturing exports. Brazil and Argentina reduced public expenditures generating economic stagnation. Chile and Bolivia increased public expenditure, sustaining growth at a slower pace. This work extends the growth models perspective to emerging countries, considering former contributions of the Latin American political economy. It also highlights how the growth models evolved in tandem with changing international conditions. Finally, the paper opens a research agenda for the political economy of stagnation in Latin American economies.
    Date: 2022–10–15
  4. By: Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan
    Abstract: Marxists love to hate the theory of capital as power, or CasP for short. And they have two good reasons. First, CasP criticizes the logical and empirical validity of the labour theory of value on which Marxism rests. And second, it offers the young at heart a radical, non-Marxist alternative with which to research, understand and contest capitalism. With these reasons in mind, it is only understandable that most Marxists prefer to keep Pandora's box closed, and few challenge CasP directly. Sometimes, though, the wall of silence breaks, typically by a lone Marxist who lashes at the 'idealist' renegades of forward-looking capitalized power and reiterates the good old 'material reality' of backward-looking labour time. Since these occasional critics are often confident in their dogma and rarely bother to understand the CasP research they criticize (let alone the broader body of CasP literature), their critiques scarcely merit a response. But occasionally, they accuse us of empirical wrongdoing - and these charges do call for a reply. Such accusations are levelled in a recent paper by Nicolas D. Villarreal (2022), titled 'Capital, Capitalization, and Capitalists: A Critique of Capital as Power Theory'. In his article, Villarreal claims that our empirical analysis of the relation between business power and industrial sabotage in the United States is unpersuasive, to put it politely. He argues that we cherry-pick specific data definitions and smoothing windows to 'achieve the desired results'; that these 'results are driven by statistical aberrations'; and that his own choice of variables pretty much invalidates our conclusions. Unfortunately, Mr. Villarreal's empirical counter-analysis leaves much to be desired. His 'reproduction/refutation' of our work is not only poorly documented, but also uses incorrect variables, including ones that differ from those labelled in his own figures (gross instead of net income, domestic instead of national variables, national categories mixed with domestic ones, etc.). So instead of trying to reverse-engineer his results, here is our own easy-to-follow, step-by-step reply to his complaints. Hopefully, this reply will make future critics a bit more careful with their dismissive arguments.
    Keywords: business,capital as power,capital income,industry,sabotage,unemployment,Thorstein Veblen
    JEL: P16 E13 E11
    Date: 2022

This nep-pke issue is ©2022 by Karl Petrick. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.