Underbelly: The Nation's Premier Broadcast Organization Takes a Dive Before Niall Ferguson: Faithful readers will recognize Ferguson as an entertaining teller of tales who has somehow developed the idea that he is a Man of Vision. That's to be expected, I guess; once you bear the weight of two named Harvard professorships, it would be surprising if you retained any sanity at all. So it is hardly surprising that we heard stuff like this:
He beat up on Paul Krugman for endorsing Depression-era deficit spending, without seeming to grasp that Krugman's complaint is that we spent too little in the Depression: caught between Roosevelt's diffidence and the counter-cyclic pressure from the states (sound familiar?) we were left with the need of a great war to bail us out.
He sniped about "Keynesianism" but than morphed into an attack on quantitative easing as if he can't tell the difference between fiscal policy and monetary --i.e., precisely the distinction that lies at the heart of the conflict between Keynes and his free-market critics.
He seems to be under the impression that the Depression was an era of isolated national, as distinct from global, markets. Dear God, has this man never heard of the Gold Standard?
As I say, Ferguson can pontificate all he wants and nothing I can say will slow him down. But what was the reporter doing while all this was going on? Twittering his publicist? I should think that one of DeLong's Political Econ majors ought to be able to pick up on and challenge (seeming) absurdities like this. Why,oh why, as one might say, can't we have a better radio show?
Still, why the introductory hippy punching? Does Buce have to establish that he is a Serious Person?
I often think Brad DeLong goes over the top in his criticism of the press but I hope he wasn't listening to the NPR interview with Niall Ferguson (on All Things Considered) tonight or they would have had to call for the paramedics...