Keynesian Economics And Thievery

In a WSJ opinion piece titled An Autopsy for the Keynesians, John H. Cochrane makes the following accusation on Keynesian Economics:

By Keynesian logic, fraud is good; thieves have notoriously high marginal propensities to consume.

Cochrane’s piece reads as assertions after assertions trying to prove that fiscal policy is impotent. Keynesians emphasize the role of effective demand in the determination of national income and expenditure. Hidden in Cochrane’s misprepresentation of Keynesian economics is the assumption that Keynesians think that the supply side does not matter.

No Keynesian would ever say that. In fact Keynesians emphasize that although the principle of effective demand is highly important, output of a nation or a geographic region is finally constrained by the capacity to produce and international competitiveness of its producers. If a nation promotes fraudsters, its capacity to produce will be lower than the case where honesty is promoted. If a nation is full of thieves, Keynes wouldn’t even take off: any attempt by the government to use Keynesian policies will fail to improve real output.

So not just morally, but even from an economic viewpoint, Keynesian economics doesn’t not promote fraud.

Cochrane’s WSJ piece just highlights the sad state of Macroeconomics.

Merry Christmas!

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