Wednesday, August 27, 2014


Forty-odd years ago, Richard M. Nixon, Republican president of the United States, said "We are all Keynesians now." This did not please the conservative wing of the Republican Party, which tended to be parsimonious on government spending and opposed to any measures tending toward inflation.

This week, Francois Hollande, Socialist president of France, dissolved his government because his economics minister, Arnand Montebourg, had criticized the government's austerity measures, speaking in favor of more government spending to stimulate growth: I gather that Montebourg had considerable backing in the cabinet. I lack the training in economics to say who has the better of the argument. But I would not have thought that a member of a French socialist cabinet would be turned out for speaking against austerity.

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