Blog goes on holiday today …

Today is a public holiday (ANZAC Day) where we remember the efforts of our past generations who fought in wars. I am not very enamoured by the hype that surrounds these days – commercialisation reigns and the black/white nature of the narrative (we were good they were evil) obscures the reality of war and the political machinations that typically accompany it. In Australia’s case our involvement in several wars has been the product of unnecessary colonial master-servant type arrangements (us being the servant) and/or ridiculous alliances with the war mongering US. But the soldiers certainly did it tough and I have sympathy with that – and personal association with my parents. But for me, I am travelling a lot today and am taking the work time to continue working on the completion of our Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) textbook, which is now in its final stages (2 weeks away). I expect it to be published later this year now through Macmillan. I will post specific information when it is available. While I am working today, I am listening to this …

This song – Bird On The Wing – is from the 1987 album (Track 6) – Tomorrow – by Hugh Masekela.

I first bought this album when it came out and played it a lot. It was recorded while Masekela was in exile from the apartheid regime. The album has songs about the imprisoned Nelson Mandela and lots of rhythms from the townships (Soweto) interlaced with straight jazz patterns.

This song is my favourite on the album from a number of close favourites.

Masakela is a pretty solid player and a pretty solid guy if you trace his background.

As as the Album name suggests – my regular blog will return tomorrow.

Upcoming Book Tour

While all the details are not quite settled the following schedule is coming together for my visit to Britain and Europe in late September to promote the publication of my next book (with Thomas Fazi) – this is our book about neo-liberalism and the Left.

If you are around during this period and close by it would be great to see you.

1. Monday, September 25, 2017 – Labour Conference, Brighton –– evening presentation.

2. Tuesday September 26, 2017 – Launch of new book, London.

3. Wednesday, September 27, 2019 – Berlin book launch event (combined launch of German edition of my Eurozone book and my new book with Thomas Fazi)

4. Madrid – Thursday, September 28, 2017 – Meetings with politicians etc.

5. Madrid – Friday, September 29, 2017 – Book event

6. Saturday, September 29, 2017 – travel

7. Rome, Sunday, October 1, 2017 – Book event

8. Milan, Monday, October 2, 2017 – Book event

9. Helsinki, October 3-5, 2017 – launching two books plus a new educational initiative. More details coming.

10. Friday, October 6, 2017 – Paris – Book event to be determined.

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    12 Responses to Blog goes on holiday today …

    1. Minna says:

      Completely unrelated to the above post and you will excuse me, but meant to ask you these questions for a while
      (1) how do you see your relationship to Marxist political economy?
      (2) would you say that Australia is already in ‘secular stagnation’?
      (3) I am having trouble working out, even approximately, the size of the low wage sector in Australia. Could you help please, eg, any useful literature? To begin with how is low wage sector in Australia defined? Would it comprise something like 2 million of the 12 million workforce….does not sound right to me….

      Big questions, perhaps…

      with thanks
      Minna

    2. Simon Cohen says:

      When Masekela made that album, I doubt he could have envisaged what Oxfam recently reported about the state of inequality in South Africa:

      “According to Oxfam, South Africa’s richest one percent of the population owns 42 percent of the total wealth of the country, emphasising that “inequality is greater today than at the end of apartheid”.

      What a disaster. I often thought that the image of Mandela was appropriated by capitalism just as the EU was – people remember the sense of social purpose in its origins and forget that it lost it.

    3. Simon Cohen says:

      Dear Bill,
      I’m hoping to attend your Brighton talk with a friend, your voice will be an important one at the Labour Conference, especially in light of the likely result on June 8th. I contacted the Labour Party regarding getting tickets and they said I would need to know who the organisers were in order to get tickets for ‘fringe’ events. Is your ‘tour’ happening under the aegis of your publisher or another organisation? I’d like to get tickets in advance if possible unless it is run on a first come first served basis.

      many thanks,

      Simon

    4. Neil Wilson says:

      Simon,

      I would imagine by September Labour will be in Hilary Clinton mode and the Corbyn era erased from history 1984 style.

      It’ll be interesting to see if Bill’s talk survives.

    5. Gogs says:

      I remember a short while ago Bill commenting on the momentum towards both extreme ends of the political spectrum; it would allow a proper contest between Capitalist beliefs and (genuine) Socialist doctrine.

      It would therefore be disappointing if Bill lost the opportunity to express his ideological/economic viewpoints at a venue that carries as much public impact as the Labour Conference. It would also provide Corbyn an opportunity to set out in practical terms what MMT-based economic policy entails; a measurable guide perhaps to its costs, benefits and attendant changes in societal tenets.

      This would take MMT beyond the strength of its pure logic, into the practicality of economic/ideological plausibility.

    6. Simon Cohen says:

      Neil -you may well be right there. I suspect that the Macron victory in France will strengthen the Blairite faction. I’m beginning to accept that the arc of change will be a very long on and that neo-liberalism still has legs. Some commentators talk of a 70 year cycle which means another 30 years! let’s hope there is no basis to that.

    7. Jake says:

      @simoncohen

      Check out south africas economic freedom fighter party it has great ideas and is groeing in popularity to ANC.

    8. bill says:

      Dear Minna (at 2017/04/25 at 2:19 pm)

      Your questions appear to be similar to those that might appear on a student assignment. I think you should do some further research before you pose them here. There is a huge literature on these topics.

      best wishes
      bill

    9. Nigel Hargreaves says:

      Neil and Simon,

      Bill’s talk at Brighton is a “fringe” event organised by a third party so nothing to do with the actual conference (I am informed by the conference organisers). He is also speaking in London the following day – I would guess at the LSE. We need to await details which will probably not emerge until June. It’s for sure the Labour Party Conference will still happen, but there will be a totally different agenda as a result of the election. I am personally now pencilling in going to London.

    10. Mr Shigemitsu says:

      @neilwilson,

      Hi Neil, I was just wondering, have you deleted your Guardian CiF account? I used to follow your posts with great interest, but your profile page now just returns a 404.

      Best, Mr S.

    11. Peter Martin says:

      On Bill’s talk in Brighton:

      It will be held at 2pm Monday 25th Sept (we’ve booked 3 hours) at Brighthelm, North Rd, Brighton BN1 1YD

      We were hoping to schedule an evening meeting but everywhere of a suitable size is already fully booked.

      It will also be quite independent of the Labour Party conference itself so there will be no problem with non delegates wishing to attend.

      I can include anyone who would like to register on mailing list.

      [Bill note: reference to plans for September 27. I will be in Berlin launching the German version of my Eurozone book and my new book with Thomas Fazi = no longer in the UK].

      Thanks

      peter_martin_200{AT}hotmail.com

    12. Peter Martin says:

      Sorry better get my email address right!
      peter_martin_2001{AT}hotmail.com

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