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Yves Smith – Krugman and His Gang’s Libeling of Economist Gerald Friedman for Finding That Conventional Models Show That Sanders Plan Could Work

Yves here. I’m a bit late to weigh in on the scurrilous attacks on the Sanders budget plan, and more important, on Gerald Friedman, a UMass-Amherst economics professor who modeled it in detail and gave it favorable marks. Full disclosure: I know Friedman but only casually, having met him at speaking events and conferences. I have also cross posted some of his work from Triple Crisis.

Let us be clear about the vehemence of the salvos aimed at Friedman: this isn’t just a bad case of tribalism and intellectual dishonesty. This is purveyors of a failed orthodoxy refusing to indulge any consideration of plans that would show how badly they’ve mismanaged the economy.

The original sin of Friedman’s model of Sanders’ plan is that it projects GDP increases in excess of 5% for several years running before growth levels moderate. Mind you, Friedman did this using a completely standard model. So the real issue is about the assumptions, which Krugman and his allies refused even to look at, instead falsely accusing Friedman of being a Sanders ally who cooked up numbers. In fact, Friedman has no connection to the Sanders campaign, has donated to Hillary, and isn’t sure how he is voting this year.

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