I don’t need to comment on news of the day when we’ve got the Daily Show:
So that means the Fed will monetize 84% of the Treasury’s deficit this fiscal year. And it’s not chump change, the deficit is still over half a trillion dollars.
Go here for full details.
Apparently this is Commander Chris Hadfield on board the International Space Station.
Tell me this cop doesn’t seem like a lying bully.
You have 30 minutes. Read this actual news story and then explain, to the best of your ability, how Steve Landsburg would discuss this on his blog.
This is a real thing in economics. Applied to “provocative” (not my term) essays, the rule is this: When you read: “the relationship between Nietzsche and the free-market right…is thus one of elective affinity rather than direct influence, at the level of idiom rather than policy,”
…you can safely stop, and turn to something else. Absolutely nothing good will come of it. The writer can insinuate the most absurd things, and yet always claim, “I never said that!” if you object. Just move on with your life.
You still don’t get my point? Okay, as I put it to Daniel Kuehn (who, needless to say, thought the Nietzche/Austrian article was “fascinating”):
I skimmed a lot of the article. I’m not even being snarky; I have no idea what the guy’s point is. It’s like talking about the connection between Ronald Reagan and Star Wars, since they both were popular in the same cultural era, except SDI was actually nicknamed Star Wars, so it makes more sense than this article.
I’m not even going to bother digging up links (here’s a Mario Rizzo discussion, you can follow him to Krugman et al.), but in the blogosphere recently there was a discussion about what idiots/liars people were, who used John Maynard Keynes’ famous line, “In the long run, we’re all dead,” to suggest that Keynes’ policy conclusions were myopic. I have two quick points:
(1) Yes, I agree that if you read the quote in context, it’s not as bad as it first sounds. Here’s the full quote:
But this long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we are all dead. Economists set themselves too easy, too useless a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only tell us that when the storm is long past the ocean is flat again.
(2) Having said that, look again at that quote. What other purpose does the glib “In the long run we are all dead” serve, except to pooh-pooh the focus on the long run as being silly? Here, watch this:
But this long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we will reap the full consequences of our actions, and that’s why we must never forget to include the long run in our analysis. Economists set themselves too easy, too useless a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only tell us that when the storm is long past the ocean is flat again.
Does the above make any sense at all?
So when today’s Keynesians ask with incredulity, “How could anyone possibly think Keynes was telling us to ignore the long run with that line?!” the answer is, because Keynes was telling us to ignore the long run with that line. That was the function it served rhetorically in his argument, at that moment.
For an analogy, if a progressive complains about George W. Bush’s line, “You’re either with us or against us,” you can’t then point to his administration’s diplomatic actions with neutral countries on the War on Terror. That line is crystal clear in its rhetorical purpose.