Dear Larry,

Most of us understand that governments spend taxpayer dollars. And since it’s our money as citizens, our representatives should spend it wisely on our behalf.

This common sense idea was fundamental to the founding of our country and the spirit of 1776: “No taxation without representation.”

But not all lawmakers see it this way anymore. And that’s why I’m emailing you today.

More and more of our elected leaders are embracing a new understanding of government budgets and taxation called Modern Monetary Theory.

If you’re not familiar with this shift in economic thinking, I’ve included a link to an article written by Ashbrook’s Director of the Political Economy Program and Assistant Professor of Political Science Robert Wyllie.

You can find it here:

In this short article, Professor Wyllie explains that proponents of Modern Monetary Theory argue that the government can and should spend as much money as markets can use, without respect to tax revenue or the national debt, because governments can repay it by simply printing more money.

And because the government doesn’t depend on tax revenues to finance its operations under this theory, there is no presumed limit on government spending other than inflation.

Larry, I’m sure you agree with me that we should be wary of Modern Monetary Theory and the political as well as economic problems it raises. We’re seeing the economic and social dangers of inflation right now, and we should never forget the moral danger of spending beyond our means. As Thomas Jefferson said, we should “consider ourselves unauthorized to saddle posterity with our debts, and morally bound to pay them ourselves.”

That’s why I hope you get a chance to read this article:

And please share it with your friends and family to help spread the word.

Thank you so much!

Jeffrey Sikkenga

Professor of Political Science, Ashbrook Center

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