Sunday, January 10, 2010


I'm still trying to decipher a recent Krugman post. This bit of it in particular caught my eye:
"John Cochrane, on the other hand, says that it’s all because George W. Bush gave a scary speech."
The "it" in that sentence is the financial crisis. Cochrane says we had a financial crisis because President Bush created a panic. I'm looking for Cochrane's version of what Cochrane said. Have not found it yet. But for me, the panic began with Hank Paulson's speech of 19 September, 2008.


Krugman rejects Cochrane's view as "the argument-from-authority thing" --

Source W says crisis.
Source W is authoritative.
Therefore, crisis is true.

No. Krugman has to be wrong about this. Anything can create a panic. President Bush's scary speech, or Treasury Secretary Paulson's scary speech, or both of 'em together in a one-two punch, that could create a panic.

It wouldn't work every day. It wouldn't work in a strong, healthy economy. But in an economy that's been going downhill for 40 years, an economy with irreparable problems, yeah. Scary talk could push us over the edge.

Point, Cochrane.


Vincent Cate said...

There is another possibility. People might have decided that Obama was going to win and that he would screw things up.

The Arthurian said...

Rational Prognostications?