Friday, February 19, 2016

James Galbraith, economist: Krugman's words against Bernie are not based on any research

We can't always trust without checking the true facts, even when it is someone like Paul Krugman who is speaking.  It's not surprising that Bernie is once again being battered by the Clinton supporters connected with Wall Street who are willing to do anything to pull Bernie down and shove Hillary up into the winner's seat.  Paul Krugman is a much-trusted and well listened to economist -- his words carry a lot of weight with the public (Dem. voters).  Without even checking the numbers, he and several other Clinton supporting economists are charging falsely against Bernie that his programs will cost more than his numbers claim. 

Bernie's numbers were thoroughly  gone over in
an analysis performed by University of Massachusetts Amherst economist Gerald Friedman (who, by the way, is a CLINTON SUPPORTER). The economists who are maligning Bernie don't even trust one of their own, if the well-researched true numbers don't give them ammunition to pull Bernie down. 

The Clinton lying machine is in full operation now and will run over Bernie like a tank--it's their modus operandi.  One economist, after realizing the condemnations are not based on any kind of research, but are just being thrown out there to see how much will stick, decided that in fairness he should speak the truth -- but how many will hear him?  I am doing my part by sending this to anyone who would rather hear Sanders truth than Clinton lies.  

James Galbraith is an economist also in Hillary's corner, but, in the interest of fairness, he is calling out Paul Krugman and other economists who, without even checking the numbers for themselves, are claiming the cost of Bernie Sanders' proposals is much higher than it was figured to be by Friedman, a prominent economist who DID crunch the numbers.


WASHINGTON -- A former executive director of the congressional Joint Economic Committee on Thursday accused columnist Paul Krugman and four prominent Democratic economists of dishonestly smearing an academic in order to score political points for Hillary Clinton.

The dispute, which is ostensibly over the ultimate cost of Bernie Sanders' economic agenda, is more than a simple war among wonks. It demonstrates that elite economists -- not merely paid campaign operatives -- are fueling the ugly escalation of hostilities between major factions of the Democratic Party as the presidential primary continues.

Earlier this week, four economists -- Alan Krueger, Christina Romer, Austan Goolsbee and Laura D'Andrea Tyson -- wrote an open letter accusing Friedman of making "extreme claims" in that study that "undermine the credibility of the progressive economic agenda." Krugman then published multiple blog posts citing the letter as evidence that the Sanders campaign was engaging in "fantasy" and "voodoo."

The problem with these condemnations, according to former JEC Executive Director James Galbraith, is that none of the economists involved in the fracas actually crunched any numbers to show why Friedman's study was supposedly such a sham. Galbraith now teaches economics at the University of Texas at Austin.

"You write that you have applied rigor to your analyses of economic proposals by Democrats and Republicans," Galbraith wrote in a letter to Krueger, Romer, Goolsbee and Tyson. "On reading this sentence I looked to the bottom of the page, to find a reference or link to your rigorous review of Professor Friedman's study. I found nothing there."

It is not fair or honest to claim that Professor Friedman's methods are extreme," Galbraith added. "Nor is it fair or honest to imply that you have given Professor Friedman's paper a rigorous review. You have not."

The four economists who wrote the original letter have all been chairs of the Council of Economic Advisers under either President Barack Obama or President Bill Clinton. Galbraith suggests that the real sham in the wonk scuffle is not Friedman's work, but the willingness of prestigious economists to rely on their mere authority to demean the work of others without actually analyzing it.

"What you have done, is to light a fire under Paul Krugman, who is now using his high perch to airily dismiss the Friedman paper as 'nonsense.' Paul is an immensely powerful figure, and many people rely on him for careful assessments. It seems clear that he has made no such assessment in this case. Instead, Paul relies on you to impugn an economist with far less reach, whose work is far more careful, in point of fact, than your casual dismissal of it."

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