Mark Thoma goes ballistic

Mark Thoma goes ballistic:

I don’t understand why someone with such a clownish views is lauded as a policy wonk:

What did Ayn Rand teach Paul Ryan about monetary policy?, by Brad Plumer: In 2005, Paul Ryan explained that he often looks to Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged” as inspiration for his views on monetary policy.

[See Brad DeLong too: Reflections on Paul Ryan’s Transactions in Individual Bank Stocks in 2008.]

Romney and Ryan don’t approve of fiscal policy stimulus (unless it’s tax cuts for the wealthy), and Ryan would take away the ability of the Fed to respond to unemployment as well. Basically, they are telling us that if a recession hits and they have their way, nothing will be done. Not a thing. No fiscal policy response (except perhaps austerity to make it worse), and no monetary response (except, if Ryan has his way, interest rate increases based upon a misunderstanding of how the economy works — that would also make things worse). So it wouldn’t just be the “you’re on your ownership society” of Randian dreams, Ryan would have monetary and fiscal authorities making things even worse than they already are.

Ryan is not a well-informed policy wonk with new, exciting ideas. He’s a policy idiot. Don’t let this guy anywhere near the policy levers.

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