Economists Opposing Massive Fiscal Stimulus
UPDATE, JANUARY 14. I discovered that Professor Miron and Congressman Boehner have already been putting together a list of stimulus skeptics, with comments by them. It's up at: http://republicanleader.house.gov/blog/?p=399
I think I'm going to start collecting the names of economists who oppose the Obama plan of spending $700 billion or so for a Keynesian fiscal stimulus. I hear the media saying that economists across a wide array of views have a consensus in favor of it, and I bet that's completely wrong. There's Eric Rasmusen, and Greg Mankiw, and Robert Lucas, and Tyler Cowen, for starters.
I think part of the problem is that a lot of discussion by economists is about what sort of fiscal policy is best *if* we are going to spend $700 billion. That's different from *whether* we should. In fact, even a devotedly Keynesian economist might oppose having a government stimulus if Congress and Obama get to design it, not an academic economist. If we are thinking of having a Keynesian stimulus, I suppose giving $500 to each American is a good way to do it, especially if we make it a gift certificate that they have to spend within six months or lose. But my saying that doesn't mean I support the idea, much less that I support $700 billion in porkbarrel spending.
I'll add to this list as I come across names with links.
- David Backus
- Gary Becker (Chicago)
- Willem Buiter
- Tyler Cowen (George Mason)
- Kevin Hassett (AEI)
- David Henderson
- Robert A. Lucas (Chicago)
- Greg Mankiw (Harvard)
- Eric Rasmusen (author of this post) (Indiana)
- Hal Varian
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