Recession and Recovery: Six Fundamental Errors of the Current Orthodoxy
| Peter Klein |
A very good summary by Bob Higgs of “vulgar Keynesianism,” defined by Bob as the “pseudointellectual mishmash . . . that has passed for economic wisdom in this country for more than fifty years.” The key feature of VK is an emphasis on crude aggregates (“national income,” “the employment rate,” “the interest rate,” etc.) at the expense of relative prices, firm and industry effects, and cause and effect. Echoing one of this blog’s favorite themes, Bob highlights the VK economist’s inability to grasp the concept of capital structure, “the fine-grained patterns of specialization and interrelation among the countless specific forms of capital goods in which past saving and investment have become embodied. In [the VK] framework of analysis, it matters not whether firms invest in new telephones or new hydroelectric dams: capital is capital is capital.”
Update: See also David Henderson on aggregation.