Archive for Debt

Responding to Steve Landsburg on Government Debt

Steve graciously commented on my recent talk from Mises U, in which I rehashed the Great Debt Debate of 2012. (Steve left a comment here and here.) Below, I will respond to Steve’s points individually. But before doing that, let me give an analogy. ================== A HYPOTHETICAL DEBATE ON GUNS PAUL: It’s impossible for handguns […]

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Who Bears the Burden of Government Debt?

As I explain in this video, I might get hit by a bus, so I wanted to go on record explaining this stuff. And here’s the link to the legendary “The Economist Zone” post.

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Federal Expenditures and Tax Receipts Over Time

I had to make this chart for a recent presentation, and thought it was interesting. Notice that taxes as a share of GDP tripled during WW2, and stayed up there for a decade. Notice also how high spending is, compared to historical levels. (Be careful, I think on this chart “current expenditures” is not the […]

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It’s Up to Scott Sumner to Save My Reputation

(Before I jump into the blog post, here is the latest Contra Krugman episode.) On a previous post I pointed out the irony that progressives are flipping out about Trump’s remarks on a Treasury default, when back in 2012 Krugman et al. were scratching their heads trying to even come up with a model in […]

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Trump on Debt Default

So people are freaking out about Trump’s remarks concerning Treasury debt default. (E.g. Yglesias and Sumner.) My initial response (on Twitter) was to contrast the freaking out with free-market economists who had favored debt repudiation as a sound (and moral) strategy. But then I went and dug up Paul Krugman’s posts (one and two) from […]

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Federal Debt “Held By the Public” as Share of GDP

Someone making a video asked me to dig this up, so I thought I’d share it with you guys too…

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An Unexpected Twist in the “Debt Burdening Our Grandkids?” Debate

You guys think you’ve got me all figured out. Well you’re wrong. In my current EconLib essay, instead of focusing on Krugman, I design two thought experiments of war financing to show that even Ludwig von Mises missed something crucial in the “debt and future generations” argument. The intro: Critics of government debt often argue that […]

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A Sincere Question for the “We Owe It to Ourselves” Camp

David Stockman links to this old Krugman column on debt burdens. Here’s the key part of the article: Deficit-worriers portray a future in which we’re impoverished by the need to pay back money we’ve been borrowing. They see America as being like a family that took out too large a mortgage, and will have a […]

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