Paul Krugman Wants to 'Punch' The Economist

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"I'm Gonna Haul Out The Next Guy Who Calls Me 'Crude' And Punch Him In The Kisser," reads the headline of Paul Krugman's latest New York Times post. This, perhaps, deserves some explanation.

Paul Krugman's been getting pretty worked up over deficit hawkishness. In post after post, he argues that without further stimulus spending, the country's economy will fall apart. He's also become increasingly irritated with his pro-austerity opponents, whom he thinks are preaching a dangerous path. Last week, things reached a pitch when he got into a scuffle with some Germans, suggesting that one candidate for head of the European Central Bank would ruin Europe by worrying about inflation when he instead of stagnation.

On Friday, The Economist finally pushed him over the edge. The Economist article on the "austerity" debate argued that "both sides ... oversimplify their cases." For example, "Mr Krugman's crude Keynesianism underplays the link between firms' and households' behaviour and their expectations of future tax and spending policy."

Which brings us back to Krugman's headline. He resents the "recurring theme" that Keynesians "are ignorant primitives who don't know anything about modern macro." The Wire can't speak for everyone, but we encourage The Economist to take the bait: we'd love to watch Paul Krugman punch the entire publication, collectively, in the "kisser."

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.