Adjunct Professor Stephanie Kelton featured in Finding the Money

Adjunct Professor Stephanie Kelton

Torrens University Australia is supporting the nationwide tour of a documentary film ‘Finding the Money’, featuring our Adjunct Professor Stephanie Kelton.

The Australian tour of ‘Finding the Money’ will encourage discussions regarding the role of the government in the economy in the context of issues such as climate change. The film questions whether the dominant economic narrative is still fit for purpose, given the challenges we face in the 21st century.

Finding the Money is touring Australia in March 2024, including screenings in Sydney at Torrens University’s Surry Hills campus, as well as at various locations in Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Canberra, Hobart and the Bangalow Film Festival.

The film draws on the work of the innovative economist and fund manager, Warren Mosler, who is a patron of Modern Money Lab, a partner institution of Torrens University, as well as that of Adjunct Professor Kelton and their colleagues. 

“So much of the public discourse, it’s like we’re going through life with one eye shut and one eye open,” said Adjunct Professor Kelton.

“We’re only getting half the picture, let’s make sure we see the full picture.”

“Does the government have to borrow dollars? No, of course not,” said Adjunct Professor Kelton.

“You could take ‘The National Debt Clock’ that scares everyone, and just rename it ‘The $US Savings Clock,’ and I think everyone would have a different kind of reaction.”

Nearly 30 years ago, Mosler noted a discrepancy between what he saw day-to-day in his interactions with central banks, including the Reserve Bank of Australia, and the way most academic economists write about money.

“Warren realised that much of the economics profession misunderstands how the monetary system works. You would think from listening to them that currency-issuing governments need to collect tax dollars before spending those dollars – he showed that it is the other way around,” explains Torrens University’s Adjunct Professor Steven Hail.

“Dollars have to be spent into the monetary system before they can be used to pay taxes or buy government bonds.”

Hail said this is not a trivial fact about modern monetary systems, and that the distinction between currency issuers and currency users is of vital importance.

“It biases policy narratives and misleads politicians into thinking that there is something inherently good or sustainable about budget surpluses,” said Hail.

“It misleads them into worrying about finding the money to meet their commitments when that is the wrong question to ask.”

“Whatever your opinion of modern monetary theory, it is quite a story,” said Hail.

“The tale is well told by US film-maker Maren Poitras in ’Finding the Money,‘ which has been touring international film festivals since September, across the USA, and will be touring the UK and Europe immediately after the Australian tour.”

At each film screening, Steven Hail will introduce the film, and Stephanie Kelton will be there to answer questions and respond to comments post-screening. Find a screening in your city here - Film Tour | Modern Money Lab.

About Adjunct Professor Stephanie Kelton

Adjunct Professor Stephanie Kelton is a multi-award winning former chief economist on the Senate Budget Committee in Washington D.C, a member of the Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force in 2020, and author of the New York Times bestseller, The Deficit Myth: How to Build a Better Economy.

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