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Friday, April 20, 2018

Paul Ryan's Exit Spells Trouble for America

From my op-ed with InsideSources, Thursday April 19:
With Paul Ryan leaving Congress, the legislative bulwark against fiscal panic and a devastating encounter with austerity is severely weakened. Is there anyone, Republican or Democrat, who is willing to step up and take his place?

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Fiscal Crisis and Political Economy, Part 1

When the U.S. economy reaches the downslope of growth, on the far side of the boost from the Trump tax cuts, there is a great risk that we will be hurled into the first fiscal crisis that this country has ever experienced. The sad but disturbing truth is that we already meet three key conditions for a Greek-style fiscal crisis; in order to avoid such a crisis - the costs of which would be catastrophic to today's highly integrated global economy - we need all hands on deck. We need, most of all, a conversation about the risks for a fiscal crisis that is based on sound, solid analysis.

Unfortunately, the theory and methodology that can provide this analytical firepower - political economy - is not very well understood in today's public policy conversation.

Friday, April 13, 2018

In Defense of Keynesian Economics, Part 3

There is one feature of macroeconomic theory that amazes me more than any other: the multiplier. Not its existence per se - that is as logical as it is indisputable - but the fact that there are high-flying economists who passionately deny its existence. What is even worse is that they travel the world and dispense policy advice to legislators based on their very denial.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

The Decay of American Capitalism

You cannot have both capitalism and the welfare state. The two are as unifiable as fire and water.

Yet today it seems as though the entire conservative and libertarian movement has decided to give that political oxymoron a serious try. From think tanks to Congress, the people and the organizations that proclaim to believe in, and fight for, limited government ignore, with unanimity, the grave and apparent consequences of our time's largest oxymoronic political compromise.