Oh My, Paul Krugman

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Q: What do John May­nard Keynes and Steve Keen have in common?

A: They’ve both been mis­read by Paul Krug­man.

In just a cou­ple of days I’ve gone from the priv­i­lege of being acknowl­edged by Krug­man to being mis­read by him, in a way that would have any stu­dent failed in a mul­ti­ple choice exam. In a pas­sage where I specif­i­cally referred to DSGE models–which includes both “New Clas­si­cals” and “New Key­ne­sians” he inter­preted me as refer­ring to New Key­ne­sian mod­els only.

And I said “under­ly­ing prin­ci­ples to the DSGE mod­els”, which should have been enough of a clue that I was refer­ring specif­i­cally to New Clas­si­cal mod­els, not New Key­ne­sian ones.

The dis­parag­ing ref­er­ences to New Key­ne­sian mod­els came later, when I described them as being like Ptole­maic astronomers adding epicy­cles to an under­ly­ing model that couldn’t explain the ret­ro­grade motion of the planets.


Then hav­ing mis­read me, he con­cludes with “Nick uses a four-letter word to describe this; I can’t, because this is the Times”

Since I don’t work for The Times, I can and will use a four let­ter word to describe your poor com­pre­hen­sion here Paul:


About Steve Keen

I am Professor of Economics and Head of Economics, History and Politics at Kingston University London, and a long time critic of conventional economic thought. As well as attacking mainstream thought in Debunking Economics, I am also developing an alternative dynamic approach to economic modelling. The key issue I am tackling here is the prospect for a debt-deflation on the back of the enormous private debts accumulated globally, and our very low rate of inflation.
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33 Responses to Oh My, Paul Krugman

  1. Leadbelly says:

    Philip Pilk­ing­ton chimes in.
    Nobel Lau­re­ate Paul Krug­man selec­tively quotes rival to stitch him up after los­ing argument.


  2. barrythompson says:

    Nick Rowe admits his mistake:

    Nick Rowe on April 3, 2012 at 4:49 am said:

    Just for the record: I did not email Paul Krug­man. That’s not what “Nick Rowe sends me to…” means. Any “com­mu­ni­ca­tion” between me and Paul Krug­man is right there on the blogs.

    Yep, I learned later that Steve Keen had partly qual­i­fied what he had writ­ten a few para­graphs fur­ther down. I should prob­a­bly have kept read­ing rather than get­ting mad at that point, stopped read­ing, and fir­ing off my comment.


  3. barrythompson says:

    Krug­man apol­o­gises too.

    Update update: Ah, so Keen didn’t mean DSGE — a term that refers only to New Key­ne­sian mod­els — when he said DSGE; he meant New Clas­si­cal, which he some­how regards as the under­ly­ing prin­ci­ples for mod­els that aren’t New Clas­si­cal at all. OK. Any­way, enough of that. I’m all for lis­ten­ing to heretics when they offer insights I can use, but I’m not find­ing that at all in this con­ver­sa­tion, just word games and con­tin­ual insis­tence that the mem­bers of the sect have insights denied to us lesser mor­tals. Time to move on.

  4. Steve Keen says:

    Where did he write that Barry?

  5. barrythompson says:

    On his ‘Oh My’ blog post.

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