03 Jan 2012


Economics, Federal Reserve, Financial Economics, Krugman, MMT, Potpourri 1 Comment

I’m still buried with “day job” work, but at this point I have so many tabs on my Firefox browser that it’s slowing me down. So this post is an investment in my future productivity, see.

* Glenn Greenwald once again delivers a very fair assessment of the political culture. It’s really impressive that GG is so honest about Ron Paul even though GG totally opposes his economic views. I am going to return the favor and defend Krugman from John Cochrane, Scott Sumner, Robert Lucas, et al. when I get caught up with my work. (Seriously, somebody remind me if I forget to do it.)

* Don’t ever get on Steve Landsburg’s bad side.

* John Papola makes fun of Keynesians at Forbes.

* I am going to come back to this when I have more time (again, remind me if I forget), but wow Nick Rowe totally turned my head around on this “burdening our children with the national debt” stuff. I actually thought Krugman was totally right (insofar as he went) by saying that the government debt per se isn’t a burden on future generations, because (I reasoned) it merely involves a subset of our grandchildren making bond payments to another subset. The real burden of the debt, I had thought, was that it reduced private investment in our generation, and so we bequeathed fewer capital goods to our grandkids. However, Nick Rowe (linked by Boudreaux) gives a counterexample involving no physical saving at all, just transfers of apples in a pure endowment economy. My fragile little mind is still recovering from the paradigm shift. (I got the Boudreaux link from Daniel Kuehn, btw.)

* Sorry I can’t remember who sent this, but it’s pretty funny. Don’t try checking into a hotel without a credit card, you freak.

* Speaking of which, does airport security keep us safer? BTW I can vouch that this writer is truly an expert in this area.

* Tom Woods continues to push his radical agenda.

* John Carney tries to make peace with the MMTers. Be careful, John. They are a merciless bunch. (Sorry but I can’t comment more on it right now.)

* My cousin sends some funny Bernanke quotes. Most of these I’ve seen before, some I haven’t and are shocking, but unfortunately when I click the link on those ones, I can’t find the actual quote. So take with a grain of salt.

* In Barron’s I review Robert Frank’s book. If you’ve been reading EconLog, you’ll see that David R. Henderson and I are of the same mind on this. I’m pretty sure I didn’t just steal his critique. (If I had read him before I wrote mine, I think I forgot it.)

* Leah Farrow (not Mia Farrow), a host from the podcast “Liberty Belles” decides to tackle an age-old question: Why was it so hard for me to get a prom date?

* Some anti-Bernank artwork to bring joy in the New Year.

* Finally, if you haven’t seen it yet, check out the second cartoon in this Economist article on hetero economists. (See what I did there?) Also, if you wade through the people giving me free advice on my gut, there’s this guy John at Wenzel’s blog pointing out that I’m actually not punching Krugman in the cartoon. Upon further review, I think he’s right.

One Response to “Potpourri”

  1. Rob says:

    In the post you link to Lansburg calls some of your commentators ‘confused’ and picks up on a comment I made on your Christmas Scrooge post:

    He says “and Scrooge consumes goods, he deprives others of the use of those goods (correct!) whereas if Scrooge hoards money, he deprives others of the use of that money (false, because taking money out of circulation changes the price level and increases the value of everyone else’s money, so they lose nothing). At one level, this is basic monetary theory, but at an even deeper level, it’s just basic arithmetic. What matters are the goods we consume, and those are what you need to track.”

    I guess on balance its unlikely I’m right and he’s wrong, but I still don’t really see why hoarding money is fundamentally different from hoarding any other good. If the money is a commodity money like gold I certainly don’t see why this would be the case. Commodity money can be consumed like any other good if that’s how its owner wishes to use it.

    Did I in fact commit an economic howler here ?

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