Thursday, September 1, 2011

Warren on Economic Double Talk

With President Obama preparing the nation for another stirring speech on his "economic plans", it is well time to take a look at some of the Keynesian ideas that inform the President's world view. Who better to give us a brief than Canadian David Warren, who not only is conversant in the history, but can write of it in an interesting manner:
John Maynard Keynes, a truly brilliant man, and an entertaining one with wide cultural interests, made wonderfully entertaining arguments for doing the wrong thing, many of them ingeniously counter-intuitive. "Public economists" (on the analogy of "public intellectuals") such as John Kenneth Galbraith in the last generation, and Paul Krugman in this, stand in direct succession to him: same attitudes, same habits.

Lord Keynes' great rival, Friedrich Hayek, exploded many of the economic fallacies upon which Keynes depended, along with many of the facts which Keynes massaged to fit his own passing needs. But Hayek's strongest criticism is too lightly passed over. He said that Keynes was interested in economic theory only as a means to influence current policy.
If an economic theory is designed merely as a means to support policy decisions, there is sure to be hell to pay when the implications of those decisions are played out.

Read Warren's whole piece here.


  1. I got two separate post out of that one Warren article, and you have yet a third to bring out of it. What a fertile mind!