Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Which Nobel Economists Are Idiots?

Martin Fridson writes at Forbes:

Liberal-leaning Paul Krugman believes some fellow Nobel prizewinners are idiots.  His refusal to tell us which ones leaves many distinguished economists under a cloud and exposes governments to the risk of pursuing idiotic policies.
On July 28, Krugman appeared on National Public Radio’s news quiz show, Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!  Host Peter Sagal asked about the impact of winning the prize in 2008:  “Now, when you’ve been in an argument with somebody who just won’t listen to you, have you ever been tempted to say, ‘Well, my Nobel says you don’t know what you’re talking.
 Krugman replied, “No, it doesn’t work–among other things because there are some idiots who’ve won Nobels.”   When Sagal asked Krugman to name a few, the Princeton professor and New York Times pundit refused. 
That was most unfortunate, because it left listeners to wonder whether the certifiable idiots included any of the 69 recipients of the Nobel in Economics.
Huh, I wonder if an economist, who doesn't understand Say's Law or an economist who doesn't understand the Broken Window Fallacy, falls into that category?


  1. Ha! Sure Krugman falls into that category.

    That being said, an idiot is not necessarily someone who doesn't understand something.

    An idiot is someone who doesn't understand something but is so stupid that he doesn't know that he doesn't understand whatever it is he's talking about.

    That fits Krugman to a "T".

    The difference between him and Hayek is that if someone asked Hayek about Scalar economics he'd probably say "I don't know enough to comment about that" instead of pretending otherwise...

  2. He's such a coward.

  3. Krugman has single handedly proven the axiom "If you look around the table and don't know who the sucker is – it's you"

    Therefore, before the table of distinguished economists and libertarians assembled here I do hereby motion this finding into the record as Krugman's proof.

    Or alternatively:

    Application of Krugman's law: I don't know who the idiots are who have won a Nobel, therefore it's probably me.

  4. I have to agree - some Nobel Prize winners are blithering idiots. Krugman is a perfect example for the truth of that statement.

  5. None of the Nobel laureates can be called an idiot.
    You may disagree with them. They may not understand economics.
    But you can't call them idiots as you can call G W Bush an idiot.
    If you do you simply misuse the term idiot.
    Call them state propagandists, bodyguards of the state, court economist, dishonest scientists if you please, but don't call them idiots.

    1. Nope, some of them are idiots.

      to clarify here are synonyms:
      1. fool, half-wit; imbecile; dolt, dunce, numskull.

      eg Paul Krugman advocated using a housing bubble to fix the NASDAQ bubble. So obviously he is an idiot.

    2. I agree that it's a misuse of the word, and that fool is the more apt word. Even more, that Krugman is rather intelligent and if it wasn't for his moral failings he could probably articuluate Austrian economics quite well,.......nonetheless I prefer idiot myself as it expresses contempt and so will continue to use it in a broad manner.

  6. If Austrians are the idiots, why is Krugman congenitally unable to state our concepts in a fair, thorough and professional manner and then engage the arguments and refute them?

    I submit that he senses in advance that he would lose a fair argument and thus flings his insults and straw man "arguments". It is all an admission of defeat.

  7. Obama won a Nobel Peace Prize.

    Krugman "we need a housing bubble to save the economy" Krugman won a Nobel prize in economics.

    Those are just two blatant examples off the top of my head.

    The reason people don't care as much today about Nobel prizes has a lot to do with these two people.

  8. [The venerable Paul Krugman finishes his business in the bathroom, washes his hands, and pauses just inside the doorway to listen to a conversation that catches his attention.]

    "Can you believe that guy? What a fucking idiot!"

    "Yeah, can you believe that asshat actually won a Nobel Prize? I thought I was going to break out laughing during his speech."

    "Wow!" Krugman thought. "I just knew there were idiots who had won the Nobel Prize. I'll bet it's an Austrian Economist! Hehe... I'm glad I snuck out after my speech so I didn't have to listen to that a-hole. I can't wait to tweet this!"