MMTed goes manga – The Smith Family

Today, our new Manga series – The Smith Family and their Adventures with Money – begins. There will be weekly episodes designed to bring the principles of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) to people in an accessible way, while at the same time having a bit of fun. Season 1 starts today …

The Smith Family are a middle-class family living in a city somewhere in the world. The second-generation parents are university educated and have professional occupations. Their two kids attend the local public school.

Follow them weekly through Season 1 as they traverse their daily lives and confront the reality of human frailty and the limits of their knowledge.

I have developed this series with a Japanese friend and manga artist over the last 12 months.

We started talking about this when I was working in Kyoto in 2022.

Over the following months, other commitments permitting, we started working on the idea in terms of overall narrative, scripts and drawings.

Our aim was to create a manga that would be a bit of fun but, at the same time, would provide a sound educational base for learning MMT and understanding why mainstream macroeconomic thinking is an unsound basis for designing and implementing policy.

We created a host of characters whom you will learn about – none of which, of course, are modelled on anyone we know (-:.

We have developed a plethora of everyday situations that these characters find themselves in, where they grapple with the complexities of macroeconomics and life.

We have tried hard not to make it a ‘see stupid, MMT is right’ type exercise.

That has been our main challenge and as an experiment in different ways of providing educational materials we will see how that turns out.

We have also created the series in both the English and Japanese languages to bring the work to a larger audience than would be usual if we confined it to one language.

You access the different languages via the navigation bar at the top of the landing page.

We also take a lead from the standard film industry disclaimers (Source):

The story, all names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this production are fictitious. No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred.

(-: As if!

If you think you resemble any of the characters then either continue spreading MMT knowledge or get our textbook and get up to speed, depending on which character you might identify with.

If you have any feedback we will appreciate it, other than ‘this sucks’.

MMTed is working on a range of educational materials to help provide people with MMT insights.

We have very little funding and I cross subsidise it with research funds I accumulate through the – Centre of Full Employment and Equity.

If you have a spare million let me know!

And I want to thank my friend Mihana for her exceptional drawing skills and help in getting this up and running.

Now it is over to you …


That is enough for today!

(c) Copyright 2023 William Mitchell. All Rights Reserved.

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Great first episode! Keen for the next one to be released, I need to know what happens next!

  2. Looks very interesting. The packaging is a little strange? Click to access a button to click to access a button to click to read the comic?

  3. Dear Mel (at 2023/10/21 at 7:03 am)

    Thanks for your feedback.

    I have made a change to the code and you can now access the episode directly with a link to all episodes also included.

    Do you think that satisfies your concern?

    best wishes

  4. I approve the new version. Most comics I read go straight to the latest page, but most comics are episodic, and aren’t working to build up an argument, or a body of knowledge. First click going to the (attractive and descriptive) chapter list looks like a good thing to me.

    The most sequential other comic I know is Girl Genius, and it is still just classy play. If some reader insisted on scrambling the plot, they would probably be fine — in their own terms.

    Contrariwise there’s CiXin Liu’s three-novel set starting with The Three-Body Problem. Somebody jumping in at volume two might think the whole affair was just nuts; volume two only makes sense in light of the horrific problem set up in volume one.

  5. Great resource! Congratulations. Teens these days love manga and I think it might speak to them in a way a lecture or doco never would. Visual culture reigns these days. For better or worse.

  6. Where does one start…?

    The fact that it is not just a manga, but an MMT Manga!? Haha

    The setting of the morning routine and narrative flow?

    The anchorman’s analogy?

    Elizabeth’s face, and response at the end?

    That jump to Ryan’s stereotypical reaction to Kevin?

    The professor’s name and circular reasoning?

    The innocence of the daughters question, and Kevin’s rational inquiry?

    Ryan’s response to Elizabeth’s heartfelt concerns?

    The power of myth, and how it can disrupt our lives?

    There is soooo much in this one episode. 😀

    The animation is amazing, very talented, really easy to follow, and captures the essence of the scenes. The framing to capture the flow of the script and the comedic pops are really well done.

    This collaboration just proves how an ‘MMT mindset’ frees us to empower others through boundless creativity.

    ‘Money doesn’t grow on trees’ because ‘Money originates in ideas’.

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