Keynes's Monetary Theory: A Different Interpretation by Allan H. Meltzer

By Allan H. Meltzer

During this rigorous research of John Maynard Keynes's perspectives on financial thought and coverage from 1920-1946, Professor Meltzer argues that a few of Keynes's major principles were neglected or misstated. whereas consciousness has taken with momentary countercyclical guidelines, the most coverage implications were ignored. Keynes positioned nice emphasis on principles, predictability, and aid of uncertainty. in accordance with his theoretical paintings, he adversarial discretionary financial adjustments and favorite principles to lessen instability and elevate the capital inventory. those regulations are in line with, and supply proof for, the translation of Keynes's concept built right here.

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My interest is different. Although I note, at some places, that Keynes's argument is faulty or incorrect, I have not concentrated on finding errors or imprecision. I believe that the main message that Keynes left is a correct, important, albeit neglected, message. His work, whether taken as a whole or in parts, calls attention to institutions and policy arrangements and their relation to uncertainty. Institutions and policy arrangements can augment or reduce uncertainty. A major task of economists is to find the rules and arrangements that reduce risk and uncertainty to the minimum inherent in nature.

P. 446, emphasis added). Moore's unworldly philosophy encouraged Keynes to seek the Ideal, a word he often used in his popular writings. The emphasis on religion, the "higher" virtues, and the Ideal led to the rejection of the Ben19 20 A n alternative explanation of the unemployment rate developed by Benjamin and Kochin (1979) is considered in a later chapter. O n the importance of beliefs, some thoughts on the relation of Keynes's philosophic beliefs to his actions, and the source of these beliefs, see Skidelsky (1983, Chapter 6).

Third is control of the size of population. ). 22 Experience and the circumstances of the time modified his proposals, but he never abandoned his belief that controls on investment, foreign lending, and money were parts of the solution to the problems of instability resulting from uncertainty and ignorance. With rare exceptions, he preferred government spending on investment to spending on consumption. , p. 349). In a 1927 speech to the Liberal Party (19, pp. 638-49), Keynes outlined the types of changes that would give society "intelligent control 22 Keynes's views on exchange controls developed from his vague suggestions in the 1920s to a full-blown system in wartime that he favored for the postwar.

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