Thanks to those capricious Gods of all-things-internet, this new blog–a joint project of the Cato Institute's Center for Monetary and Financial Alternatives and the Center for Financial Privacy and Human Rights–makes its first appearance rather later than we intended, and (wouldn't you know it) just three days after the debut, over at Brookings, of Ben Bernanke's Blog.
That's the free market for you: so much wasteful duplication! What we need is a government-run monetary economics blog monopoly.
Just kidding. What we really need is a blog that challenges the powerful and largely unconstrained government monopolies that are presently in command of the world's monetary systems–monopolies like the Federal Reserve System, of which Ben Bernanke was, not long ago, chairman.
Somehow I doubt that Ben Bernanke's Blog will take up that challenge.
Enter Alt-M. If you want to be reassured that the monetary system we've got is just dandy, I refer you to Professor Bernanke. If you are convinced that the Fed is a botch job, or simply hope that we can do better, Alt-M is the money blog for you.
Alt-M is a revamp of Freebanking.org, to which I and others here were long contributors, and continues the tradition established by it. Its purpose is to make readers aware of the shortcomings of the Federal Reserve System and other conventional monetary arrangements, and to expose them to and encourage discussion of potentially superior alternatives. It will not shy away from discussion of unpopular and radical alternatives, including such things as free banking, commodity standards, strict monetary rules, currency boards, and cybercurrency. On the contrary: it favors serious discussion of all of these over the mild tinkering with the status quo that's too-often regarded as representing the farthest limits of conceivable reform. In fact, no amount of such tinkering can even begin to address the more serious shortcomings of, and dangers posed by, existing arrangements.
As Alt-M's Editor-in-Chief, I plan to contribute regularly to it. But we also have many other regular contributors, some of whom also contributed to Freebanking.org, including several of the Center for Monetary and Financial Alternative's outstanding Adjunct Scholars and Senior Fellows.
So, welcome and willkommen and bienvenue to the internet's latest and, I hope, soon to be greatest, monetary economics blog. You might not always agree with it. But I promise that you will at least encounter ideas here that you aren't likely to come across in that other blog.