National Review’s Ramesh Ponnuru Responds to Robert Wenzel of the Economic Policy Journal

After Robert Wenzel demolished Ramesh Ponnuru in his post, National Review Goes on a Crazed Attack of Ron Paul Monetary Economics,  Ramesh Ponnuru responded to him with more inane distortions. Bob has responded to that.

Bob Wenzel posted this as a follow up to his demolition of Ramesh:

In the comments to my post, National Review Goes on a Crazed Attack of Ron Paul Monetary Economics, , Ramesh Ponnuru has responded. My replies are in italics.

Click on all the links; the whole affair is delicious. The skinny on it is that the National Review and Ramesh Ponnuru did a hit piece on Ron Paul and the Austrian School of Economics by misrepresenting the ideas of the school. Robert Wenzel has been kind enough to correct Ponnuru.

Bob Wenzel goes on to say in his response to Ponnuru’s response to his original piece:

1) I’ve read America’s Great Depression.

So I gave you the benefit of the doubt that you didn’t read AGD and instead it you read it and didn’t understand it, that is, you have a reading comprehension problem. As I pointed out in my column Rothbard in AGD anticipated most of your objections to Austrian business cycle theory. Do you have a problem with any of Rothbard’s argument?

2) Whether or not monetary expansion to produce a steady 2 percent inflation rate can introduce distortions into the economy–something, by the way, I never deny–has nothing to do with whether Paul is correct to make the specific claims that I dispute (that even such a steady rate would amount to stealing from savers, etc.)

Again, you don’t understand the first thing about Austrian Business Cycle Theory. During a period of high productivity HUGE amounts of money would have to be printed to maintain a 2% price inflation rate. If you don’t think this would amount to major stealing from savers, I would really like to sell you one of my fog machines I store in San Francisco. I’ll even give you my normal Keynesian-believer discount.

3) Your graph doesn’t, and can’t, prove anything about the relation between monetary policy and government debt.

Oh puhleeze. Are you saying the wars haven’t had anything to do with the expansion of debt and the Fed’s buying of debt?

4) Almost none of the quotation from Hazlitt on Keynes is on point. It is true that I believe the empirical evidence suggests that wages are sticky downward, and that Keynesians also believe this.

Duh, this is what Hazlitt is discussing:

Take this strange sentence from page 14: “Any individual or group of individuals, who consent to a reduction of money-wages relatively to others, will suffer a relative reduction in real wages, which is a sufficient justification fort hem to resist it.” (His italics.)To see how bad this argument is…Again, your reading comprehension problem surfaces.

5) Someone who calls people whose views he dislikes “crazed,” questions their intellectual abilities, swears at them, etc., is probably not the best situated to describe his target’s words as “vicious.”

Oh, so you can give, but can’t take.

Well, I happen to think guys like you, Krugman and Bernanke are crazed. In fact, I think Bernanke is certifiable. Keep in mind that Bernanke brought us the Great Recession (Which I warned about in real time,(see hereherehereherehereherehere and here)  , Krugman missed the eurozone bailout, the turnaround in the economy and will look like a total goof when the price inflation comes. That you guys stick to your absurd theories suggests you are all crazed, even if you are doing it as evil bastard apologists/operatives for the state.

Great stuff! Wenzel is one of the best at explaining economics writing today.


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