McArdle Versus Krugman

I have to say that I found McMegan's attacks on Paul Krugman to be pretty weak. Apart from pointing to some shortcoming of his New York Times columns that are intrinsic to the format, the gripe is, I guess, that he doesn't write "about economics" anymore. But Megan also derides his writing about health care and inequality. Or maybe she's lumping those into the "not economics" category because she doesn't agree with his conclusions. We also seem to be dealing with the view that it's incredibly gauche of Krugman to be going on and on about how George W. Bush is really bad at running the country.

This, though, is a pretty important topic!

And though Krugman's position on the "does Bush suck?" question is a fairly banal one in September 2007, he's been consistently -- and presciently -- adhering to this view even in times like September 2003 when it wasn't a popular one. And, yes, he writes about non-economics subjects sometimes, too. He wasn't, after all, hired to write the "economic scene" column, he was hired to be an op-ed columnist. Basically, I think Megan wishes Krugman were less liberal. Or would write less about the topics he has liberal views on. He still does, after all, do some long format writing like this New York Review of Books piece on health care, this one on Social Security, this piece for The Nation on class stratification, this Rolling Stone essay on inequality, etc.

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Matthew Yglesias is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

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