Paul Krugman is in his element again. The Republicans control the U.S. House of Representatives and the Democrats no longer have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. A very liberal Democrat occupies the White House and is governing via executive orders (winning Krugman's approval, although executive orders are good only when Democrat presidents issue them).
So, even though Democrats still have the upper hand, in Krugman's mind the Republicans rule. Why? Because tax rates are not even higher than they are now. Furthermore, because the top individual income tax rate remains at 35 percent instead of being raised to 39.6 percent, all is lost because, in Krugman's view, that 4.96 difference is the difference between having a manageable federal budget and having large deficits. (Well, that 4.96 AND "death panels.")
All of this leads to a very interesting view of the Economy According to Krugman. As he wrote earlier this year, if it were up to him, ALL tax rates would rise, which would give the government more money (supposedly), lead to more spending, and give the economy a boost. (I'm not sure that Krugman's scenario would follow; when Herbert Hoover got Congress to raise taxes in 1932, revenues actually fell, but, then, Hoover was a Republican and did not have the requisite magical Krugmanian touch that Democrats have when it comes to taxes and spending.)
In his column today, Krugman accuses the Republicans of "hypocrisy," because they both support tax cuts and give lip service to balancing the federal budget. Actually, I agree with Krugman on this point, but I'm not sure the guy who accused Sarah Palin of "lying" on "death panels" and then glowingly spoke of "death panels" before denying he had claimed he really didn't mean what he just had said is someone who should call others "hypocrites."
Nonetheless, I think that we have a pretty clear picture of what Krugman believes will "revitalized" the American economy: higher taxes, more government spending, and inflation. On top of that, Krugman wants to bring back the old financial cartels that existed from the New Deal until the 1980s, not to mention other economic cartels that were prevalent under the federal government's regulatory schemes.
Those of us where were adults in 1980 can remember the outright stagflation that accompanied the government's economic policies, when inflation was in double-digits, unemployment was rising, and we saw no way out. Yet, Krugman wants to bring back those days via the resurrection of the old regulatory regimes and bursts of government spending and inflation.
Step back, folks, and take a hard look at what Krugman is recommending. This is a recipe for stagflation and lots of it. It is NOT a recipe for revitalizing our economy, period.
Economic laws have not changed. Government cannot repeal the Law of Scarcity nor can it order an economy into prosperity no matter what Krugman tells us. Indeed, what Krugman is recommending is nothing short of True Voodoo Economics.