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Thread: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

  1. #181
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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Quote Originally Posted by CletusWilbury View Post
    I really enjoyed reading this thread. I think it needs something ...



    and


    They seem equally good
    https://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/20...acroeconomics/

    Via Mark Thoma, David Warsh finally says what someone needed to say: Friedrich Hayek is not an important figure in the history of macroeconomics.
    These days, you constantly see articles that make it seem as if there was a great debate in the 1930s between Keynes and Hayek, and that this debate has continued through the generations. As Warsh says, nothing like this happened. Hayek essentially made a fool of himself early in the Great Depression, and his ideas vanished from the professional discussion.
    ...
    But the Hayek thing is almost entirely about politics rather than economics. Without The Road To Serfdom — and the way that book was used by vested interests to oppose the welfare state — nobody would be talking about his business cycle ideas.
    "I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it." --J.S. Mill

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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Quote Originally Posted by CletusWilbury View Post
    I really like the article, but it seems to contradict your first sentence, at least for the conservatives.
    Read it more carefully:
    The best stories seem to involve ulterior political motives. Keynesian economics, if true, would mean that governments don’t have to be deeply concerned about business confidence, and don’t have to respond to recessions by slashing social programs. Therefore it must not be true, and must be opposed.
    If Keynes was about liberal policies, it would advocate permanent stimulus instead of only when demand is constrained and would never advocate fiscal tightening, but it does.
    "I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it." --J.S. Mill

  3. #183
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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    Read it more carefully:

    If Keynes was about liberal policies, it would advocate permanent stimulus instead of only when demand is constrained and would never advocate fiscal tightening, but it does.
    Thanks, I did need to reread your short post, and that provides clarity.
    I agree that the 'great debate' between Hayek & Keynes is a construct of people with political motives.
    I have read Road to Serfdom, seems like a sociology book more than an economics book.
    I found the book to be mostly opposed to government control of prices and/or wages, not against deficit spending.
    And he specifically approved of government control of electrical generation/distribution and water/sewage. (If I recall correctly)
    When I have pointed that out to rightwingers I'm told I don't get it, or that he became more vocal on deficits later in life.
    Last edited by CletusWilbury; 10-15-17 at 09:49 AM.

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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Quote Originally Posted by CletusWilbury View Post
    Thanks, I did need to reread your short post, and that provides clarity.
    I agree that the 'great debate' between Hayek & Keynes is a construct of people with political motives.
    I have read Road to Serfdom, seems like a sociology book more than an economics book.
    I found the book to be mostly opposed to government control of prices and/or wages, not against deficit spending.
    And he specifically approved of government control of electrical generation/distribution and water/sewage. (If I recall correctly)
    When I have pointed that out to rightwingers I'm told I don't get it, or that he became more vocal on deficits later in life.
    It's refreshing to read a post from someone open-minded. The thing to takeaway is that conservative thought proclaims that Keynesian economics is a "liberal" theory when it is nothing of a sort. Those that have that view generally don't know what the theory is. As Brad Delong writes:
    Over the past 70 years The General Theory has shaped the views even of those who haven’t heard of it, or who believe they disagree with it. A businessman who warns that falling confidence poses risks for the economy is a Keynesian, whether he knows it or not. A politician who promises that his tax cuts will create jobs by putting spending money in peoples’ pockets is a Keynesian, even if he claims to abhor the doctrine. Even self-proclaimed supply-side economists, who claim to have refuted Keynes, fall back on unmistakably Keynesian stories to explain why the economy turned down in a given year...

    It’s probably safe to assume that the “conservative scholars and policy leaders” who pronounced The General Theory one of the most dangerous books of the past two centuries haven’t read it. But they’re sure it’s a leftist tract, a call for big government and high taxes....
    "I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it." --J.S. Mill

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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Quote Originally Posted by KevinKohler View Post
    Yeah, if you need the grade....I hate to say it, but I'd advise not arguing, never question or cast doubt on him in front of the class. Honestly, it's not worth it. He might welcome it, but most likely not.
    In the case of a college education, the professor is the customer and the student is the provider. The customer is always right. Find out what they want and provide it.

    It makes gaining good grades in your education much less mysterious.
    I am not of the mind that a man is either of science or of religion. At his best and his worst, man exists in the misty glimmering where the falling angel meets the rising ape. That he chooses a direction from that point defines him as human.

  6. #186
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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    It's refreshing to read a post from someone open-minded. The thing to takeaway is that conservative thought proclaims that Keynesian economics is a "liberal" theory when it is nothing of a sort. Those that have that view generally don't know what the theory is. As Brad Delong writes:
    Thanks. I think we are on the same page, I love Delong.

    For any who aren't on the same page, this is someone they might find more credible:
    Keynes and Keynesianism Bruce Bartlett, 2013

    ...
    When I began studying economics in the early 1970s, the term “Keynesian” was already losing its luster. In fact, one can date the precise moment when it became passé: Jan. 4, 1971. On that day, President Richard Nixon gave a joint interview to several television journalists. After the cameras were off, he made an offhand comment to Howard K. Smith of ABC News that he was “now a Keynesian in economics.” The New York Times reported this statement in a brief article on Jan. 7, 1971.
    ...
    As it happens, Friedman had said in 1965 that “we’re all Keynesians now” in the Dec. 31 issue of Time magazine. He later complained that his quote had been taken out of context. His full statement was, “In one sense, we are all Keynesians now; in another, nobody is any longer a Keynesian.” Friedman said the second half of his quote was as important as the first half.

    But it wasn’t only those on the right, such as Friedman, who were abandoning Keynes; so were those on the left such as the Harvard economist John Kenneth Galbraith, an early and energetic supporter of Keynesian economics. In July 1971, he said that Keynes was obsolete because big business and big labor so controlled the economy that Keynesian economics didn’t work.
    ...
    On his blog last week, Paul Krugman took me to task for misconstruing the generality of Keynesian theory. My point was that policy makers in the early postwar era routinely accepted the idea that Keynesian stimulus was justified whenever the economy wasn’t doing as well as they wanted.

    I acknowledge that this view derived mainly from economists who called themselves Keynesians rather than Keynes himself. He was, in fact, a strong opponent of inflation who would have opposed many “Keynesian policies” of the 1950s and 1960s, which contributed to the problem of stagflation in the 1970s that ultimately discredited those policies.

    Economists and policy makers mostly forgot that Keynes prescribed budget surpluses during economic upswings to offset the deficits that he correctly advocated during downturns. In his 1940 book, “How to Pay for the War,” he advocated balancing the budget over the business cycle.
    ...

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    Re: My Economics Professor Hates John Maynard Keynes

    Today was our obligatory ''let's bash single payer all class long" day.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mac77 View Post
    It could add fuel to the leftwing attacks on cops that was started by obama when he was president
    ring the bells, that still can ring, forget your perfect offering, there is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in. ~ Leonard Cohen

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