THE DEMONS IN KRUGMANOMICS
Nobel economist Paul Krugman is due to address the Economic Club of Toronto Wednesday on whether the United States has "mortgaged its future." If Mr. Krugman is true to form, he will tell his audience that it has not mortgaged its future enough. What is desperately needed is more government borrowing and spending.
Mr. Krugman is a Nobel-winning trade-policy academic economist who, over the past couple of decades, has gone increasingly to the liberal dark side, as evidenced in his columns in The New York Times. What seems to have driven him completely over the edge is a combination of Bush Derangement Syndrome and an evangelical desire to prove that Reaganomics was a failure. He criticizes Barack Obama for not going far enough. He hates Republicans with a passion and is Keynesian to the core. Thus he can only interpret the failure of government stimulus as evidence of "cowardice" or ''lack of political will."
Like most liberal moralists, Mr. Krugman demonizes his opponents as not merely wicked and/or stupid/and or venal, but also "furious" because he is so right and they are so wrong. On election night 2008, he and his even more uncompromisingly liberal wife, Robin Wells, who is also a Princeton economist, had a party at which effigies of their enemies were burned. Salem, anyone?
Mr. Krugman constantly concocts conspiracies of the rich to grind the faces of the poor. He calls anti-Keynesians "The Pain Caucus." He is currently lashed to the mast of not one but two sinking ships, the USS Keynes and the USS Draconian Climate Policy.
Modem American conservatism, he has written, "is, in large part, a movement shaped by billionaires and their bank accounts, and assured paycheques for the ideologically loyal are an important part of the system. Scientists willing to deny the existence of man-made climate change, economists willing to declare that tax cuts for the rich are essential to growth, strategic thinkers willing to provide rationales for wars of choice, lawyers willing to provide defences of torture, all can count on support from a network of organizations that may seem independent on the surface but are largely financed by a handful of ultra-wealthy families:'
Maybe he should check out what causes the Rockefeller, Carnegie, Pew, Hewlett and Packard foundations are actually promoting. It certainly isn't climate change denial.
Mr.Krugmarn's Nobel Prize for work in international trade and economic geography was widely praised. Early in his career he was a fan of markets and free trade, and attacked "popular" economists such as John Kenneth Galbraith,
Paul Krugman's,affection for markets fell as he became obsessed with in equality, market instability and catastrophic climate change
Lester Thurow and Robert Reich, who catered to economic misconceptions beneath a cloak of liberal good intentions. However, that cloak in the end proved too attractive not to try on.
Mr. Krugman's affection for markets has declined as he has become obsessed with inequality, market instability and catastrophic climate change, He doesn't think consumers can be trusted to make the "right" choices any more, and has taken to the remarkably annoying habit of condemning free marketers as people who believe that people are always rational and markets perfect. Then again, straw men are easy to torch.
Mr. Krugman's take on the ongoing crisis is remarkable not merely for wishing to keep doing more of what has failed, but his blindness to the role of government policy in its creation. Fannie and Freddie? Mere bystanders who only decided to help blow up the system ''late in the game." Greece? It's all the euro's fault.
Anthropogenic global warming has become an article of religious faith for Mr. Krugman, which has required him to go through astonishing convolutions in the face of growing evidence of corruption. Climategate? A "fake scandal." Remember those emails about a "trick" to "hide the decline"? According to Mr. Krugman this was an "anomalous decline." Well, no. The decline was in actual temperature readings which failed to concur with the proxy data from tree rings. These had to be ''hidden'' because tree ring data were essential to the credibility of the poster child ''hockey stick" graph that presented the twentieth century as a thousand year anomaly. The decline had to be hidden because it exposed fake science,
The former free trader now thinks that carbon tariffs might not be such a bad idea, and since cap and trade represents an alleged "market solution" to the catastrophe-to-come, the conservatives who (successfully) opposed it are, in Mr. Krugman's view, hypocrites.
Mr. Krugman leans towards the global salvationist posturing of Lord Stern, whose climate review is a monument to perverted cost-benefit analysis. "Stern's moral argument for loving unborn generations as we love ourselves may be too strong;' Mr. Krugman has written, ''but there's a compelling case to be made that public policy should take a much longer view than private markets:'
The problem is that it doesn't.
The evil of Mr. Krugman's opponents is all embracing. He has written that
"[T]hose who insist that Ben Bernanke has blood on his hands tend to be more or less the same people who insist that the scientific consensus on climate reflects a vast leftist conspiracy." You see the connection? Leaving aside the blood libel, if you oppose further corruption of the monetary system you are clearly also a climate denier. And why doesn't America have universal public health care? Simple, it's due to "The legacy of slavery, America's original sin."
Once Mr. Krugman's intellectual inspiration was Adam Smith. Now it's Naomi Klein.
June 29, 2011
Posted by BEYOND RISK at 7/01/2011