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Saturday, June 04, 2005

For some of us, the sun never sets on Okrent day. I can't help wondering what Daniel Okrent will say in his new job as The Economist's public editor.

Okrent's one critique of Krugman not blasted out of the water by Krugman at the original site of the debate (or Brad DeLong here when Krugman didn't bother) was

5. Some other examples of Krugmania that popped out of my copious files:

His 1/27/04 assertion that the cost of unemployment insurance “automatically” adds to the federal deficit. This two-fer misrepresents a pair of facts: that unemployment insurance is largely borne by the states, and that major federal contributions to the states come about only because of an act of Congress, which is hardly automatic.

Bad Paul claimed (correctly) that federal transfers to states for the UI program are partly automatic (Mark schmitt also know as The Decembrist explains in a comment to Brad's post that such transfers are automatic loans and. Schmitt doesn't say if they are counted in the official deficit as they should be, but this is not relevant to the substantive point about automatic stabilizers.

Now Paul has confused the Krugmanian Economist which writes "Federal programmes act as automatic fiscal stabilisers, siphoning off tax revenues from booming areas and transferring them to ailing regions as unemployment insurance or ..."

via Brad who quotes a bit outside the subscription wall.

I guess the Economist must be written by Krugman acolytes. Recall this was the least absurd example in Okrent's list.

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