George Osborne could take a lesson on economics from Abraham Lincoln

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I cam across this quote from Abraham Lincoln whilst researching the Joy of Tax [i]:

The monetary needs of increasing numbers of people advancing towards higher standards of living can and should be met by the government. Such needs can be met by the issue of national currency and credit through the operation of a national banking system [or designated monetary authority.] The circulation of a medium of exchange issued and backed by the government can be properly regulated and redundancy of issue avoided by withdrawing from circulation such amounts as may be necessary by taxation, re-deposit and otherwise. Government has the power to regulate the currency and credit of the nation.

The interaction between money, inflation, the need to deliver economic activity for the benefit of all and the role that taxation has to play in that process has, then, long been appreciated. So too has the need for government intervention in the economy. Both have also, unfortunately, been long forgotten by some at cost to us all.

[i] Abstract of Lincoln’s Monetary Policy; Library of Congress No.23, 76th Congress, 1st session, page 91; quoted at The rest is worth reading as well