Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

The Flaw in the Reasoning…

Brad DeLong (pulled from an otherwise-spot-on post): Two years ago, after all, the recession was over. The Recovery: I started these from the first month after NBER’s recession end date. Note that there is one true, consistent growth line—sadly, that’s the mean (average) duration of Unemployment. If this is victory, Pyrrhus of Epirus had nothing […]

The Argument Against the "First Derivative Mistake" Excuse

Unless you’re really stupid, or bending over backwards to find excuses for the Obama Administration’s Geithnerian malfeasance, you should be less than impressed with Matt Yglesias’s attempt to argue that the Administration saw reason to be happy with overall employment (link to Brad DeLong). If you’re Matt Yglesias, you should be even less impressed with […]

Beating The New Republic by Seven Days, or Does Jonathan Cohn Read AB?

Yes, it’s another “AB was right” post. Detractors of this blog in general and me in particular could stop reading now. But they shouldn’t. Anyone who thought through the economics could have pointed out what I did on the 17th: From [Republican Congressman John] Boehner’s site: At least 30 percent of employers would gain economically […]

Spot Effing On, as The Mainstreamers Edge Leftward

We have just printed the eleventh (11th) straight week in which new jobless claims have exceeded 400,000 people. As Krugman notes, “The Fed predicts disastrously high unemployment as far as the eye can see(pdf) [a]nd, in response to this dire prospect, it declares its work done.” So this it is almost palliative that Barry Ritholtz […]

Time to Change Those Tags? or Economists Catching Up, Round Two

Brad DeLong, not generally a Leading Indicator in such matters, follows Mark Thoma yesterday in looking into the abyss and seeing the outline of a train around the “light”: Henceforth, I will call the current unpleasantness not “The Great Recession,” but rather “The Little Depression.” This still strikes me as optimism, but I’m stil on […]

We Beat the Germans in 1918/And They’ve Hardly Bothered Us Since Then

Brad DeLong culls the comments to this post at Crooked Timber to produce a “with notably rare exceptions” Greatest Hits package—his second post riffing on the original—in honor of The Maestro continuing to attempt to improve the reputations of Paul Volcker and Ben Bernanke, if not G. William (“I ran a company, I didn’t need […]

Duncan Black, Ph.D. who Specializes in the Economies of Cities, Explains It All to You

Bruce has made this point repeatedly. Dr. Black puts it in more direct language: [I]nevitably the Social Security Trustees will, perfectly justifiably, tweak a few assumptions about future economic activity so that there will be a DOOM scenario, an EVERYTHING’S AWESOME scenario, and a “uh oh maybe in about 40 years we will have a […]

The Economics of History, Douthat-Style

I try not to pay attention—and not provide a direct link—to the NYT’s Stupidest Conservative. It’s one of the greatest advantages of having Susan of Texas around: you can go there and see anything I might write, done better, and (in this case) with cute graphics. But when Brad DeLong falls down on the job—dealing […]

Does A Very Strange Distribution Lead to a Sacrifice in the Hope of a More Interesting Endgame?

Brad DeLong notes an experiment subject (as is the wont of the Obama Administration to date) to regulatory capture: In a surprising move, the Obama administration will extend special bonus payments meant to reward top-performing Medicare Advantage insurers to those that score only average ratings….The law says bonuses, which start in 2012, would go to […]

Brad DeLong on Economists (and non-economists)

by Linda Beale Brad DeLong on Economists (and non-economists)crossposted with Ataxingmatter In Economists (and Non-Economists) Behaving Very Badly Indeed Watch, Brad DeLong accosts the austerity bandwagon that objects to any more federal stimulus, whether from Congress or from the Fed. At the moment our flow of nominal spending at $14.7 trillion per year is some […]