Archive for the ‘Dismal Science’ Category

The Layman’s Guide to Economics, Appendix 1

When I first published the Layman’s Guide, I omitted any reference to economists as such, mostly because it seemed to me at the time that not even God himself, let alone an untutored blogger, could make anything either succinct or coherent out of their work. Since then, I’ve read more widely, if not more deeply, and, by George, I think I’ve […]

The Layman’s Guide to Economics

The Brothers Koch: You can’t have any. Ted Cruz: You don’t deserve any. Goldman Sachs: You can’t have any until we’ve got ours, and most of yours as well. Larry Summers: Once I’ve got mine, I’ll try really, really hard to get you some. President Obama: Everybody should have some. Somebody should see to it.

A Cold Day in Hell

Today Paul Krugman has discovered that, gasp, technological unemployment is really real! And it’s really, finally here! And it really, really will result in a permanent transfer of wealth from labor to capital, no matter how many college degrees laborers go into debt to acquire! (and, coincidentally, of course, this also seems to imply that Marx might […]

And Now, For Something Completely Different:

Brad DeLong at his finest. Proof positive that the talent’s out there:

The Democratic Deficit in Europe — Another View

From Dani Rodrik’s Europe’s Next Nightmare in Project Syndicate: The challenge is to develop a new political narrative emphasizing national interests and values without overtones of nativism and xenophobia. If centrist elites do not prove themselves up to the task, those of the far right will gladly fill the vacuum, minus the moderation. That is […]

Not a Fool, but a Democrat

Today, in the Süddeutsche Zeitung online, an editorial by Heribert Prantly which makes, among others, the following point: In der Spitzenpolitik wurde dieses Referendum diskutiert, als habe Premier Papandreou vorgeschlagen, die Demokratie in seinem Land durch ein russisches Roulette zu ersetzen – und als gelte es daher, dem Premier die Waffe wieder aus der Hand […]

Brief Encounters with Austrians

Fiat Currency. Fractional Reserve Banking. Collectivism. Curse words as familiar these days on the Intertubes as socialist or liberal used to be at Baptist church suppers. Disciples of the Austrian Holy Trinity  — Hayek, Von Mises, and Rothbard — are everywhere these days, and everywhere eager to counsel us that any houses we build in the future […]

A Tinkerer’s Damnation

Originally appeared as a comment on Autonomy for All. Reposted here with minor changes. Tinkering…. As good a word as any for a dearth of political will. I hate to bash Brad DeLong, who’s one of the good guys, and doesn’t really deserve a snarking, but he’s a classic case of the technocrat who believes […]

Rush Limbaugh Eaten by Feral Children

If a just and merciful God actually ruled our modest corner of the universe, this might well be the last headline in the last newspaper before the world’s presses are shut down forever. The justice of it is obvious. Having devoted the last twenty years of his pitiful life to a self-indulgent campaign against the […]

We Can’t Get There From Here

If the government is going to give billions, even trillions of our tax dollars to the banks, we should own them. Nationalize the banks. When progressive Democrats say this, what they usually mean is that the government should take over the large investment banks and bank holding companies which have been the recipients of tax-funded […]