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Paul Krugman

Despite my politics is far to the left I have always have a soft spot for Nixon. Maybe it’s because of his opening to China, or his hard nosed politics and realism. Someone like Paul Krugman, a liberal democrat, with policies I have more agreements with, yet I dislike those idealistic cold warriors. This morning professor Krugman got me tee off again. I sent the following letter to the NYT after I read his column “Why We Fight Wars”.

“When Professor Krugman asked the question of “Why We Fight Wars”, and stated the total cost of Iraq War exceed 1 trillion dollars, I thought it would be an examination of U.S. policies of military bases all over the world and defense spending exceeding the next 10 countries combined. I wasn’t expecting his conclusion that maybe low economic growth cause leaders to go to war and China may be the threat because her growth of 7.5% is no longer double digit, and U.S.’s growth of 2% is not a worry.”

Maybe I am a little unfair to professor Krugman as most of his column is about Putin and Russia’s meddling in Ukraine. Only in the end he took a swipe at China. He said,

“And if authoritarian regimes without deep legitimacy are tempted to rattle sabers when they can no longer deliver good performance, think about the incentives China’s rulers will face if and when that nation’s economic miracle comes to an end — something many economists believe will happen soon.”

Note the words, authoritarian regime…..without deep legitimacy…..incentive…..economic miracle….. many economist believe.
I guess what’s happening in Ferguson, Missouri is not authoritarian. With overwhelming majority of black population and a mostly white police force and government is legitimate. The incentive for Chinese government is to provide for the well being of Chinese people, and certainly I don’t think not most, maybe not any economist predicted the Chinese achievement for the last 35 years.

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  1. August 19th, 2014 at 00:33 | #1

    Are authoritarian governments the only ones that externalize & divert attention away from their internal problems? Is it purely coincidence that just about every war fought by the US after WWII followed some kind of economic downturn?

  2. August 19th, 2014 at 11:29 | #2

    In another recent op-ed (http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/15/opinion/paul-krugman-the-forever-slump.html), Krugman talked about the forever slump facing Japan, Europe, and possibly U.S.

    Put these 2 pieces together, and one really should be worried about world peace … as the West must be primed – under Krguman’s theory – for a major war on the trail of its slump.

    A lot of time prognosis of a disease tells one more about the prognoser than the prognosee. This is such a case.

  3. Black Pheonix
    August 19th, 2014 at 12:00 | #3

    As the old subject of “legitimacy” goes, I would note that “democracy” does not legitimize itself.

    If “voting” is supposed to be evidence that legitimizes the people’s choice, then, the “VOTES” every few years only legitimizes the CHOICES made each voting period.

    But since nobody is actually “voting” on whether the “voting system”/”democracy” is legitimate, that legitimacy of “democracy” is not tested.

    By analogy, “Democracy” is a meat grinder that grinds out minced meat.

    Now, each time the meat grinder of “democracy” produces a batch of results/minced meat, you can slap a “good until” date on the minced meat.

    But if you never cleaned the Meat Grinder of “democracy”, then, after a while, even freshly grinded meat would probably be bad.

  4. curious
    August 19th, 2014 at 19:50 | #4

    Just a few words about Paul Krugman’s personal economic expertise. In 2013 he declared personal bankruptcy claiming some 8 million in debt. ( on google ).


    His current net worth is some 2.5 million.

    Not bad achieving that amount in less than 2 years . One gets paid well when you are high profile (NY Times) and support policies of the US empire.
    As mentioned in the leading comment above, he skirts the real reasons for past US wars. Instead, he
    parrots the US administrations propaganda demonizing Putin for the Ukraine crisis and China for threatening Western democracy.
    US wars with the aid of its lackeys have been fought to keep the US empire afloat. As of late, the Empire is being challenged and hence the conflicts in various parts of the world. The danger, another war on the horizon courtesy of the manufactured Ukraine crisis.
    Some interesting comments video) on the Ukraine crisis by a Russian analyst


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