Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ain't Rocket Science

PETER BOETTKE:
"I don't possess a crystal ball, so I cannot forecast the economic future. But I do know that it is not good to expand the monetary base 140% or to run deficits the size we have, or accumulate public debt as we have. . . . This 'ain't rocket science'! There will be a day of reckoning due to the monetary mischief and fiscal irresponsibility.

I also know that the problems we are facing are not 'market problems' --- it is not that actors are all of a sudden 'irrational', and it is not that markets are inherently 'unstable'. Everything we are seeing in market behavior is a rational response to the environment created by public policy. This is not a psychological problem we are dealing with, it is a public policy problem. Bad public policy produce bad incentives which in turn produce bad results. Ultimately, this is a problem of bad ideas which result in bad public policies. Again, this ain't rocket science. The role of the economists in all of this should be like my Dad when I was a teenager (and truth be told an adult), and grab policy makers by the shoulders star them squarely in the face and state clearly 'this isn't rocket science' and explain clearly the Econ 101 basics of why the decisions we have made so far have not been correct."
Right on and well said: "Everything we are seeing in market behavior is a rational response to the environment created by public policy."

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