You might also want to read some of Stephanie Kelton's pieces on this. We Can Pay For A Green New Deal | HuffPost Opinion | How We Think About the Deficit Is Mostly Wrong This is *super important*. She's probably the clearest writer on Modern Monetary Theory. MMT is the theory of how modern money works -- it's not so much the theory that's modern, it's the money that's modern. And it's based on the flat-out facts of how the banking system actually operates. A lot of people are still operating on old theories of money which were accurate under precious-metal coinage and are simply false in our current economy -- they were accurate when the banking system worked very differently, but it just doesn't work that way any more. The old theories are interesting in "dollarized" countries which both can't print their own currency and where the government is so distrusted and the government's power is so weak that it can't collect taxes reliably, but irrelevant to countries like the US. (At least unless Trump totally destroys people's trust in the ability of the federal government to collect taxes, which still seems unlikely.) This is actually Krugman's major analytical error; he's working from one of the old theories of money.