Leading Conservative Economists Exposed as Frauds; Conservatives Defend Them.
Can Conservative Economics Even Survive?
The fracas that the fraudulent "research" paper by leading Harvard conservative economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart has generated, is going straight to the heart of the economics profession, and also to the heart of public policy for dealing with the economies in the U.S. and many other countries. Here is the fundamental issue that's involved in this important history-shaping matter:
The basic war among professional economists has been between the "austerity" camp (of which this paper was the biggest gun), and the "growth" camp.
Austerians say that the way for the world to address the slowdown in the developed economies is for governments to cut government spending. (The fraudulent "research" paper provided selective, jiggered, and even bogus, data supporting this view.)
Growthers say that the way to address it is instead for those governments to increase government spending.
Austerians say that government spending is waste, which drains productive spending by corporations. Austerians say that government spending just increases the national debt.
Growthers say that government spending is sometimes productive, and that corporate spending is itself sometimes wasteful. Growthers say that even sometimes when government spending turns out to be wasteful, and always at times when it turns out to be productive, government spending puts money into the hands of workers and consumers, so as to increase their ability to make purchases, which gets factories and businesses humming again, which increases the nation's economic output and restores the taxes flowing into the government's coffers, so that even the government's debt will decline, over the long term. It's a win-win situation, growthers say: the public benefits, the government benefits, and even corporations benefit over the long term, because their sales-volumes become restored.