Right, but wrong:

I think Paul's rebuttal [to Ruth Marcus] is correct, so far as the "circumstances" are concerned. But the circumstances are of course not the only thing to have changed since he opined on this topic in the past. His modes of analysis and expression have changed too, and radically, in ways that often seem calculated to obscure the fact that he is one of the four or five most brilliant economists of his generation. This is not incompetence or inadvertence on his part; it appears to be a conscientious choice. He wants to fuel the rage of the administration's opponents more than he wants to help people think through the arguments. He feels that this now serves the greater good. Bush and his people are too wicked for dispassionate analysis, he believes; there will be time for Seriousness later.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.