You may recall that I was earlier puzzled at Scott Sumner’s commentary on a Sheldon Richman article talking about Cantillon effects. If you care, I now have the resolution, because of Scott’s follow-up post. Scott actually doesn’t dispute anything in what the Austrians have in mind when they say “it matters who gets the Fed money first.” It’s just that Scott calls such outcomes “fiscal policy” and thus, by definition, “monetary policy” can’t help some and hurt others in terms of who gets the money first.
To get the full story, you need to read Scott’s follow-up post, then skim the comments and see his responses to everybody, but especially to me. (I don’t mean that I necessarily asked the best questions in the comments, I’m just saying for this one issue, you can just read the comments by Scott and me and you will see what I’m talking about.)
So…Sheldon Richman was right, and Scott Sumner should apologize? I don’t get the sense that’s what you’re trying to say, Nick.
It’s as if Jesse Jackson says, “It matters whether the police shoot at a fleeing bank robber vs. an innocent teenager!”
Then the NYPD chief says, “No it really really really doesn’t matter.”
People flip out, and then the NYPD chief (and his Canadian lawyer) elaborate, “Oh, we were assuming we were talking about scenarios in which the bullets all miss their targets. When they actually *hit*, we don’t classify that as ‘shooting,’ we classify that as ‘hitting.’ You whiners need to use standardized nomenclature before you complain next time.”