Thursday, October 21, 2010

Stiglitz: "We Cannot Afford Austerity"

Cross-posted at the Mises Economics Blog (lots of comments there)

From the New York Times, "Europe Is Turning Its Back on Keynes’s Cure for Recession":
The British economist John Maynard Keynes may live on in popular legend as the world’s most influential economist. But in much of Europe, and most acutely here in the land of his birth, his view that deficit spending by governments is crucial to avoiding a long recession has lately been willfully ignored. (...) “Everything Keynes established about the primacy of maintaining demand at a steady pace is gone,” Brad DeLong, a liberal economist and blogger at the University of California, Berkeley, said mournfully. “Europe obviously thinks it can focus on sound finances while the U.S. manages world demand,” he said in a telephone interview, “but unfortunately we are not doing that.” Joseph E. Stiglitz argued that the British government’s plan was “a gamble with almost no potential upside” and that it would lead to lower growth, lower demand, lower tax revenues, a deterioration of skills among the unemployed and an even higher national debt. “We cannot afford austerity,” he wrote in The Guardian.

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