Published by marco on
After a relatively long dry spell of more toned-down blog entries, Krugman finally sinks his teeth into his opponents again, while at the same time pointing out an interesting concept, the anti–straw-man.
“[T]he construction of anti–straw-men: […] attributing to your intellectual opponents sophisticated, reasonable positions they do not in fact hold, ignoring the nonsense they actually espouse. […] both the OECD and Rajan are calling not just for fiscal austerity but for raising interest rates, a move that makes no sense unless you fear inflationary pressures when the economy is at 10 percent unemployment. […] It’s very hard to see what their argument is — but one thing is for sure, it really is murky and muddled. […] I know you’d like to think well of these economists. So would I. But there’s no there there.”
This concept is a sign of the politically correct times, where more and more otherwise intelligent people get sucked into a morass of intellectual relativism, in which every opinion is equally valid, regardless of the degree to which it is disassociated from reality. An opinion should in no way impart an obligation on the part of the listener to lend it any credence if the espouser isn’t willing to put in the work of anchoring said opinion to reality via verifiable fact or historical precedent.