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I recall from Keynes's Economic Consequences of the Peace that he had some spectacularly counter-intuitive observations about the macroeconomic effects of reparations on the recipient, whom they tend to impoverish, and that they turned out to be spectacularly true.  

I also recall discussions I had with economics masters candidates about balance of payments issues where they pointed out that when you run a balance of accounts deficit it is kind of like your trading partner, e.g. China, is giving you stuff for free.  I was never completely convinced.

I certainly hope that some of the heavyweight economists on ET can clarify.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat May 31st, 2008 at 05:43:31 PM EST

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