The Money Hole

First up, on This Week: one of these things is not like the other. Can you spot the Nobel Prize winning economist?

Here's a similar roundtable that aired this fall:

In The Know: Should The Government Stop Dumping Money Into A Giant Hole?

One video is funny and one is sad. I'm just not sure which is which. As I've said many times to my friends, if you can only get your hands on USA Today or The Onion you're better off reading The Onion. That way, you can at least triangulate back to the truth.

As Congress gets closer to passing a stimulus package, it's getting pretty weird out there in commentary land. Matthew Yglesias notes the relative ease with which Republicans are allowed to maintain mutually exclusive positions--namely: we can't afford spending increases but we can afford revenue decreases in the form of permanent tax cuts. Meanwhile, Niall Ferguson is going around claiming that there is no empirical evidence that Keynesian economics works. Ferguson's clearly intelligent, but, uh, has he seen the empirical evidence that free market capitalism doesn't work?

As Albert Einstein once said, "No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong." If we think of Milton Friedman as the alternative to John Maynard Keynes, then we just saw a pretty spectacular example of a single experiment proving someone wrong.

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