In this post I will offer some reflections on the current state of Democratic Policy proposals, with reference to the debates on Tuesday and Wednesday. Given that there are 20 candidates, I will not make any effort in this post to analyze them individually or to rank order the candidates. At present, I see no … Continue reading Whither the Democrats?
In a recent column, political commentator and centrist Democrat Fareed Zakaria argues that the current round of progressive policy proposals such as The Green New Deal and Single Payer Health Care are the wrong ideas for the Democratic Party. The right ideas, according to Zakaria, are the kinds of "wonky proposals" that centrists have advocated over the last … Continue reading Why Centrist Democrats are Wrong
The recent controversy surrounding Ilhan Omar has got me thinking more about both the Democrats and Republicans on foreign policy. In reflecting on her comments, I am inclined to agree that her reference to "Benjamins" was at best, an unthinking resort to anti-Semitic tropes. An interesting article in The Atlantic makes the argument that this kind of statement makes the sort of public discussion we need to have about Israel … Continue reading Democrats and Foreign Policy: Round 2
If one begins from the premise that the goal is to replace Donald Trump with a Progressive Democrat in 2020, there are good reasons not to support Tulsi Gabbard in her Presidential bid. Then again, there are also good reasons not to support Kamala Harris, or for that matter, any of the erstwhile centrist alternatives. My point … Continue reading The Democrats’ Foreign Policy Problem
In a recent Article in American Affairs, economist Phillip Mirowski presents an interesting and cogent argument that Neo-liberalism is a well organized, well funded, and quasi-coherent vision of political economy. He argues for the existence of what he terms a Neo-liberal Thought Collective (NTC) which only partially overlaps with Neo-Classical Economics. In Mirowski's view, the … Continue reading The Greatest Trick of the Devil
In an article in the AAUP's Journal of Academic Freedom, noted historian Joan Wallach Scott draws a distinction between the protections afforded by Academic Freedom and the First Amendment. The distinction is an important one: the claim to protection for academic freedom rests on a claim to expertise in one's discipline. In contrast, the First Amendment … Continue reading Are some ideas not worth debating?
I’m probably as guilty as anyone of criticizing millennials. In fairness though, I hope that all of us who are for example, past the age of “Generation X” understand that the refrain “kids these days” is a perpetual one. And if we are unhappy with what the kids are doing, we need look no farther … Continue reading Teaching Anti-Labor Lessons
Since this is my first post a few prefatory comments are in order. This blog is not necessarily directed (or at least not uniquely directed) at people with a technical understanding of economics. The second prefatory comment is a disclaimer: the last few years of my life have been a blur of either teaching (as … Continue reading Slouching towards secular stagnation.