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Emeritus lectures on modern money theory

Lyle Luzum ('70) gave the Emeriti Colloquium Series lecture.

Lyle Luzum ('70) gave the Emeriti Colloquium Series lecture.

Jorge Contreras (‘20) | Chips

Jorge Contreras (‘20) | Chips

Lyle Luzum ('70) gave the Emeriti Colloquium Series lecture.

Jorge Contreras, Staff Writer

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Sustainable Iowa Land Trust Board Member Lyle Luzum (’70), gave the presentation “What Money Actually Is and How It Works: Through the Lens of Modern Money Theory” as a part of the Luther Emeriti Colloquium series on Thursday, March 8 in the Mott Room.

Modern Money Theory (MMT) focuses on the unique economic situation created by governments controling their own sovereign currencies.

Luzum graduated from Luther with a degree in political science. He then became a high school teacher, farmer, and Director of Computer Information Systems at Northeast Iowa Community College. He retired in 2010 and now explains MMT to non-economists and volunteers as a tax preparer for the AARP Tax-aid program at the Decorah Public Library.

Community member Sharon Rossman was pleased with the lecture and came away thinking that the U.S. could reach an economical state similar to Nordic countries.

“I don’t have a lot of background in this, but the topic was clearly presented and it made so much sense,” Rossman said. “First you say, ‘how can that be,’ and then you say, ‘well yes it sure is.’ He did a good job proving it, and I found it fascinating. I think it is possible for the United States to reach the economical balance of  Nordic countries, but it is going to take some rethinking and some reeducation.”

Community member Donovan Hommen said that Luzum made him see U.S. economics in a new way.

“I think Luzum presented a very different way of viewing the world,” Hommen said. “That is in our economy: the role of the government and the private sector. The whole idea is that the balance has to always be there, whether we like it or not. ”

Former Luther Professor of Education, Edgar Epperly mentioned that he has heard Luzum talk about MMT before but he always learns something new from the presentation.

“I’ve heard Lyle talk about MMT before, and although I don’t understand it very well, I’m impressed about what he knows about it,” Epperly said.

Luzum studies MMT because of the complexity of the topic.

“The liberal education I got a Luther made me question about the things that you know, what I believe, and why; and to be curious about all kinds of other things,” Luzum said.

During the lecture Rossman invited everyone in the room to read the book “Viking Economics” that can be found at the Decorah Public Library.

Luzum encouraged people that are interested in MMT to visit for more information.

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