Paul Krugman et al: Now for a Look at Et Al

(Note to Blog Followers:  I suggest you click the Gravitar at the upper left of your email to go to my web site so as to easily link to the Blogrollers I mention below).

I devoted my previous post to introducing Paul Krugman’s blog because there was a lot to introduce.  He is a relentless one man campaign for the importance of more government stimulus now, both here and in other countries, to get the world economy growing faster (or as with several countries in Europe, for example, growing at all).

Over the past year I have kept an eye out for a conservative blogger to match Krugman in both economic stature and frequent postings, but the best I could come up with is Greg Mankiw.   Nothing wrong with him as an economist.  He’s got the chops there, but he is not an obsessive political advocate like Krugman.   He seems moderately conservative and his blog is that of a genteel professor, not a crusader.   He is a friend and colleague of Rogoff and Reinhart at Harvard, so a number of his recent posts defend them in the debate over their study.  Also, if you google Krugman and Mankiw together you will find several articles about their disagreements.

To provide reinforcements for Mankiw I provide a link to the American Enterprise Institute blog (AEI), which is generally considered the best of the conservative think tanks, meaning that while having a conservative (often neo-con) point of view, they have high research standards and, according to Wikipedia, take “no institutional positions on policy issues”.   As also noted in Wikipedia, they are looked upon as the right leaning counterpart to the left leaning Brookings Institute, which is arguably the most respected U. S. think tank (though, of course, not if you are on the far right).

AEI  has a Money & Politicscolumnist-blogger James Pethokoukis who often challenges Krugman’s economic arguments as you can see if you google their names together.  However, unlike with Mankiw, I can find no responses from Krugman to Pethokoukis.   He doesn’t mention the man and here is my theory why.   Krugman doesn’t respect him enough to respond.  Pethokoukis has made a career of being a political and economic columnist, but his formal education came in the liberal arts and journalism, not economics.   He does provide a frequent counter point to Krugman, though.

David Frum is another conservative voice, though a moderate conservative who believes the Republican Party is badly in need of reform, which to those on the far right makes him a RINO.  Well,  I just noticed Frum is taking a break from blogging, but I imagine his posts will stay up for awhile, so you can still get a taste of his thoughts.   In time I will replace him with another right-leaning blogger.

I used to label Wonkblog as Ezra Klein because he wrote most often, but these days there are many contributors.   While liberal leaning the quality of analysis is good and the posts come often so it provides regularly solid information about the poli-econ scene.   The blog has several posts today related to today’s jobs report for those interested.

Finally, there is Nate Silver’s 538 Blog which I referred to often in the last election as he had Obama as a big favorite for months, while most of the media was playing up the race as a close contest.   My guess is Silver has liberal leanings, but being more a researcher than an advocate, he is not busy promoting a cause but in developing data from which to make accurate predictions.   He often includes analyses on sports outcomes as well as politics.

So, those are my Blogrollers, at least for now.

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Election Post Mortem and Sports Talk with Nate Silver

My thoughts are percolating regarding upcoming posts as well as reorganizing those pages listed across the top which I have done little with so far.  Reorganization probably will mean I will erase most of them and pray that some day I will have more time to build up a reserve of illuminating political/economic information there.

The Major League Baseball logo.

The Major League Baseball logo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So, today I suggest you look at Nate Silver’s blog, which is also listed on my Blogroll to the left for  convenient access in the future.  For those who are unfamiliar with Silver, he  first gained public recognition for developing a computer analysis for forecasting the performance and career development in Major League Baseball  (stuff related to the movie Billy Ball).  Later he became famous doing  a great job in presidential picking in 2008 and again in 2012 (a perfect 50 out of 50 states).

In this post Silver is interviewed by some one who asks questions about the election, sports, public policy and some miscellaneous ones at the end.  If you flip through it I think you’ll find an interesting thing or two or three.

Such as this question and answer:

Q.  “Which do you find more frustrating to analyze, politics or sports?”

A.   “Politics. I don’t think its close. Between the pundits and the partisans, you’re dealing with a lot of very delusional people. And sports provides for much more frequent reality checks. If you were touting how awesome Notre Dame was, for example*, you got very much slapped back into reality last night. In politics, you can go on being delusional for years at a time

Full disclosure: I said in a NYT video yesterday that I’d bet Notre Dame against the spread.”

He took Notre Dame against the spread?  What an idiot!