Paul Krugman is a big prestigious NYTimes columnist with a Nobel Prize. He also has some fascinating quotes:
- Sharing his enthusiasm for the threat of intergalactic war as an economy booster: “If we discovered that, you know, space aliens were planning to attack and we needed a massive buildup to counter the space alien threat and really inflation and budget deficits took secondary place to that, this slump would be over in 18 months. … There was a Twilight Zone episode like this in which scientists fake an alien threat in order to achieve world peace. Well, this time, we don’t need it, we need it in order to get some fiscal stimulus.”
- Advocating the broken window fallacy in one of the most morally heinous contexts imaginable (September 11th): “Ghastly as it may seem to say this, the terror attack — like the original day of infamy, which brought an end to the Great Depression — could even do some economic good. But there are already ominous indications that some will see this tragedy not as an occasion for true national unity, but as an opportunity for political profiteering.”
- Commenting on the future impact of the Internet in 1998: “By 2005 or so, it will become clear that the Internet’s impact on the economy has been no greater than the fax machine’s.”
This is what can pass for a serious public intellectual these days. At least if you have the right politics.