Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas, all!

I must confess, I have yet to go through all the excellent comments folks left on the last few posts. But I will. I am also hesitant to post anything new until I have absorbed all the thought that folks shared. Unfortunately, this may take a while.

One point I will add, though, is that I think attempts to pin the failure of MMT to spread (Steve Keen, Steve Keen! seems to be doing better) on politicians is misplaced, as are attempts to make it easier to understand to laymen, and attempts to reconcile it with standard macro.

This stuff is technical, and on technical material like this the government takes its marching orders from the University. If Obama or Paul or Cain or whomever were to take to the podium and begin spouting MMT he would be a laughing stock before the ink on Paul Krugman's takedown column was even dry. The Fed and the Treasury are staffed by guys who learned from the same textbooks written by professors at Harvard or Princeton. A populist movement to take over the academy in this day and age is ludicrous, it ain't 1968 and it ain't going to be.

This, incidentally, is the problem OWS has.

Secondly, while making MMT easier to understand is a laudable goal, the outcome of this will be to win over Austrians, the other leading candidate for a "people's economics". This will not help in the Academy, but it will fill the blogosphere with semi-correct rantings and it will make Austrians really mad.

Finally, the history of paradigm shifts in the Academy is well documented, and they have always happened via dead bodies, never by the future playing nice with the past. When something is true, that is enough.

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