An interesting article about some spurious economic analysis that has been used as a central justification for austerity policies that are creating a whole lot of unnecessary pain all over the world. For every time I’ve double and triple checked some numbers, there is probably some big deal economist who didn’t even give numbers a look more than once and selling his article direct to a conservative think-tank.
But I think Krugman isn’t right that there will be another such analysis coming down the pike, because most Tea Party types couldn’t tell you who Reinhart and Rogoff are, but they do know that liberals and left-wingers are all a bunch of useless egghead poindexters, and they manage to convince numerous others of the same thing.
Analysis? Who needs analysis? Some people are actually _proud_ that they don’t. That has to change.
The message shouldn’t be about conservative analysis that doesn’t hold water. There’s a lot of that. The message should be about how we change the climate of opinion so that people both respect _good_ analysis and _expect_ it from their academic whizbangs.
It doesn’t help to say “They’ll only generate some more respectable idiocies in some new paper.” It helps to get people to respect rationality and reject idiocies.