Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Aliens are Coming! We MUST Build High-Speed Rail!

We now know what it will take to end the current depression: A few lies from American scientists (taking a break from claiming the seas are going to rise 20 feet) to get us ready to prepare for the vaunted invasion of "space aliens" and...high-speed rail.

Yes, in that world known as Wonderland, boondoggles will make us rich!

Said The Great One on a recent appearance with his soulmate, Bill Maher:
This is hard to get people to do, much better, obviously, to build bridges and roads and healthcare clinics and schools. But my proposed, I actually have a serious proposal which is that we have to get a bunch of scientists to tell us that we're facing a threatened alien invasion, and in order to be prepared for that alien invasion we have to do things like build high-speed rail. And the, once we've recovered, we can say, “Look, there were no aliens.”

But look, I mean, whatever it takes because right now we need somebody to spend, and that somebody has to be the U.S. government.
Actually, this is Keynesianism in its purest form, for only in that world can one base a recovery on real-live boondoggles such as high-speed rail and claim to be speaking wisdom. No doubt, Maher was applauding every word.


Dan said...

I do get the feeling that Krugman would have praised the Egyptians for the building of pyramids. I mean look at all those people put work to create something that didn't help them in the slightest. I mean what kind of economic policy states that people produce to consume, those Austrians with their silly ideas. Only pointless spending on things people won't consume will help turn the economy around since there is not point to work expect to work.

Tel said...

Well the global warming scare almost worked to convince people they needed to hand over supervision of all energy and food resources to the government.

The swine flu scare convinced people it was worth taking jabs of untested experimental whatever while handing tax money to big pharma.

TonyFernandez said...

Arguing with Keynesians, you realize that it's not a school of thought as much as it is a cult if the popular. Austrian claims are never argued against, just ridiculed.

Peter T said...

"Actually, this is Keynesianism in its purest form" - is this news? Krugman is a proud Keynesianist.

"I do get the feeling that Krugman would have praised the Egyptians for the building of pyramids. I mean look at all those people put work to create something that didn't help them in the slightest."

1. Krugman says that Government spending is helpful (or even crucial) in a liquidity trap, not as a general case. When production capabilities are restricted, government spending leads to inflation.

To the people working for something that doesn't help them: I think that the defense of the US doesn't require today's bloated military budget, many of the people working in the industrial-military complex shouldn't.

teqzilla said...

So, Krugman is advocating war socialism, or since there won't be any actual war, plain old socialism. Oh, and he argues that we initiate it by terrorizing the public through reference to a great mythical enemy that the benevolent state is going to protect us from. This sounds a hell of a lot like stalinism to me.

Anonymous said...

You have literally no idea what you are talking about. Krugman provides data to back up his point of view. All you do is make assertion. The next time you present facts will be the first time.

William L. Anderson said...

Gee, I had no idea that Krugman had the facts to back him up on preparing for space aliens. And can you explain how building high-speed rail will get us out of the depressions? Please!

Fearsome Pirate said...

Krugman-style "pure" Keynesianism isn't a rejection of Austrian school econ so much as it's a rejection of all econ. Economics as a modern discipline began with the observation that "wealth" isn't a big stock of money, it's goods and services that people need. Say, Smith, Ricardo, Menger, Mises, Pigou, and basically every economist prior to Keynes started from that fundamental insight.

Any sense of what wealth actually consists of is completely missing from Keynes' General Theory, hence the obsession with the "circular flow" of money and the identification of prosperity with money constantly "circulating." So to Krugman, it's not that he doesn't care what the money is spent on, it's that the idea that there is something to think about other than how much money is spent hasn't crossed his mind.

Daniel said...

Here's a touch question: Who is more insufferable, Maher or Krugman?

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Anonymous said...

Austrians don't believe in economic models... Only their assertions based on human behavior... They have no facts... Just beliefs

Anonymous said...

First time comment (and last time). I came here because someone had directed me to Paul Krugman's blogs and I'd read a few, but being a naturally sceptical person I cane looking for opposing views. But seriously, is this the best you've got? Ad hominem attacks, no data, deliberate misreading of his position, obvious logical fallacies? I still don't know if Krugman is right or not, but based on the weakness of your arguments, I'm pretty convinced that you guys aren't.