The Lion in Our Winter Paul McCulley


It’s almost like he reluctantly descended from his comfortable mountain habitat to visit us with offerings of wisdom. There is the startling appearance of the glorious mane of hair that hangs to the shoulders like a royal lion’s mane. Blended with a soft almost southern Mark Twain like voice it contains no ambiguity. The ease with which he shares his knowledge causes the listener to lean forward. The Keynesian message is clear. Perhaps this is why Paul McCulley retired from PIMCO in late 2010 to more freely apply his gifts to a Gaia lifestyle and the Global Interdependence Center (GIC).

Founded in Philadelphia Pennsylvania in 1976, it’s an organization meant to deliver his global economic intelligence thrust, which contains no ethnic differences marked with political brinkmanship. Paul McCulley’s new Global Society of Fellows, leads a mutuality of global intellects. Working in tandem their mission is to activate on a global scale an act of interdependence and thinking; outside the box. This is where dynamic minds are the rule – not an anomaly. Is this merely impossible populace rhetoric? Not if you’re Paul McCulley. Foresight and hindsight seem equal. As its name implies, GIC is created to encourage a universal concept that there are no federations separate and distinct when mending economic wounds and fiscal weaknesses.

As former PIMCO Managing Director and generalist portfolio manager, he has a two decade long history of leadership in global economic communities. Spending most of that time in prep for Federal Reserve governance, Paul McCulley has a limitless view of the constructs of geopolitics and sovereign economics. When he retired his road curved to what may garner his highest calling, as the Director of Global Interdependence Center. In this arena he uses plain-speak when sharing his Keynesian views that are often punctuated with the current geopolitical topics. Many describe GIC as a think tank. Its mission contains a far heavier lift.

PAUL MCCULLEYFor hundreds of years men have organized groups and clubs with the surreal notions of set premises. They are called think tanks. The primary challenge that lies within the myriad of think tanks is that no matter the level of reasonable or unreasonable intelligence, they’re ruled by individual philosophies. Many of them exist within non porous borders of sovereigns, politics, religion, and democratic groups. They often employ brinkmanship to make manifest partisan ideals. Global Interdependence Center (GIC) is more than just a think tank. Rather its name denotes its obligations to the world. As Chairman of Society of Fellows based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Paul McCulley founded the Society in 2010. Its mandate is to fuse the intelligence of global fiscal and monetary leaders. As a group their aim is to participate in the solutions to fiscal complexities. Our country is the perfect test tube to prove McCulley’s premise.

The United States is gifted with being an immensely diverse democracy. Yet by the nature of its incredible diversity, it is insular. Inventing then reinventing a Democracy is messy and expensive. As an embracer of Keynesian constructs, Paul McCulley understands that business brings the discipline for sound monetary growth. The task then falls to sovereign governances to ensure a stable fiscal environment. Paul McCulley is not assisting in the creation of a tank of thinkers. Rather he is creating a Petri dish where thinkers are fomenting on how to make the economical unthinkable become the thinkable.

Out of the box reasoning is necessary to changing the current conventional constructs of economics and geopolitics. This is ambitious to the extreme. But what better frontier for exploration could a man like Paul McCulley commit. Twenty-five years of controlling the neuroscience of economics and financial politics, he uses these tools to unite a team that is tugging humankind to a place of new fiscal and monetary paradigms.

His current project is a much heavier lift. Melding global genius then harnessing that energy to solving global economic challenges is extremely noteworthy. Like many economist today, Paul McCulley preaches that uncertainty has become the certain. We have begun a period of Knightian Uncertainly or immeasurable risk.

"Uncertainty must be taken in a sense radically distinct from the familiar notion of Risk, from which it has never been properly separated…. The essential fact is that ‘risk’ means in some cases a quantity susceptible of measurement, while at other times it is something distinctly not of this character; and there are far-reaching and crucial differences in the bearings of the phenomena depending on which of the two is really present and operating…. It will appear that a measurable uncertainty, or ‘risk’ proper, as we shall use the term, is so far different from an unmeasurable one that it is not in effect an uncertainty at all." ~ Frank Knight

This article has been updated to include new material – June 29, 2012.