...which ironically both say much the same thing!
Bob Murphy shares this from Paul Krugman: "The appeal to the intellectually insecure is also more important than it might seem. Because economics touches so much of life, everyone wants to have an opinion. Yet the kind of economics covered in the textbooks is a technical subject that many people find hard to follow. How reassuring, then, to be told that it is all irrelevant–that all you really need to know are a few simple ideas! Quite a few supply-siders have created for themselves a wonderful alternative intellectual history in which John Maynard Keynes was a fraud, Paul Samuelson and even Milton Friedman are fools, and the true line of deep economic thought runs from Adam Smith through obscure turn-of-the-century Austrians straight to them."
Bob is impressed Krugman even knew about the Austrian school that long ago, but what struck me is that I've heard something like that from Austrians before.
Peter Boettke once wrote: "I have made the distinction in my writings between the "mainline of economic teachings" that can be traced back to David Hume and Adam Smith and runs forward to F. A. Hayek, James Buchanan, etc., and "mainstream economics" which is more or less a sociological concept related to what is currently scientifically fashionable among elite academic economists."
You can't really blame Krugman for pointing out that some people think exactly what Boettke claims here. I suppose you could get on him for talking about intellectual insecurity, but if you're going to do that make sure you also get huffy over the claim that what the mainstream thinks is just the fasion of elites.
Liveblogging World War II: May 23, 1943
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