20 Sep 2010

Why Brad DeLong Is More Honest Than Paul Krugman

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Both of them have been mocking the self-pitying rich, which (in and of itself) is fair enough. (I.e. nobody who makes more than $400,000 should be publicly complaining about his difficult financial position, unless it’s tongue-in-cheek.)

But DeLong has the decency to say:

I know how [people in the top 1% of income earners] feel. My household income is of the same order of magnitude [as] theirs (although somewhat less [than $455,000/yr]) and we too had to juggle assets quickly when it developed that an error in Reed College’s housing system had caused them not to charge us $5,000 that we owe. We too have chosen to put our income in places (tax-favored retirement savings vehicles, building equity, housing, private college costs) where we think it is better used than $200 restaurant meals, $1000 a night resort hotel rooms, or $75,000 automobiles. But I don’t think that I am not rich.

OK, fair enough Prof. DeLong.

Now check out Krugman’s class warfare: “You see, the rich are different from you and me: they have more influence.”

It’s true, I couldn’t get an exact figure on Krugman’s income. But he must make a decent chunk of change from his NYT column, and I would be surprised if he couldn’t do a monthly let’s say every other month, after-dinner talk and charge $25,000, for an annual income of $150k right there.

Plus he’s got book royalties, and whatever Princeton pays him.

Plus, he won the Nobel (Memorial) Prize in economics a few years ago. I couldn’t figure out exactly what the cash award was, but unless he put it all in Vegas real estate, he should be drawing a nice income from that too…

3 Responses to “Why Brad DeLong Is More Honest Than Paul Krugman”

  1. Libertarian says:

    I read that article by Krugman a couple days ago and have felt sick ever since. What’s even more sickening than his mischaracterizations and compassion rhetoric (on the other hand, I guess we should be thankful when PK doesn’t attempt to drown us in his economic nonsense) is the comments that his devout followers leave.

    “Where are the rich leaders? Why do the rich fight tooth and nail to protect their bottom line instead of standing up and saying it’s time to lead by example and give back to their country? I want to be grateful and proud of them for showing their patriotism instead of appalled by their lack of generosity, their stingy spirits, their lack of gratitude for how this country has given them all the safety, tools and benefits to prosper without also instilling in them a desire to give more back to others in a great time of need. Where is their sense of duty and honor?”

    The nastiness and the misguidedness in America today makes me more happy than ever that I vacated for New Zealand.

  2. Yogi says:

    To be fair, he mentioned in his blog that his income is well over 250K and that he would, infact be hit by the tax increase.

    However, I don’t disagree that he used class-warfare rhetoric in his column.

    He said, for instance, that the rich are exhibiting a “Belligerent sense of entitlement”, claiming that it is their money and they have the right to keep it……

  3. Taylor says:

    Why is BDL putting his retirement savings in tax-favorable vehicles?