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we have been living in a constant keynesian boost context since the end of WWII

I agree that the US government was under constant stimulation, especially the last 8 (or 28) years. But is there anything Keynesian in the "supply side" tax cut stimulation, particularly?

by das monde on Wed Oct 8th, 2008 at 10:47:32 AM EST
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There's nothing keynesian about buying bad assets off banks. If the goal is to kick-start lending, setting up a national investment bank would be more likely to work.

(Why the fuck did we have to privatize the national savings banks?)

A vivid image of what should exist acts as a surrogate for reality. Pursuit of the image then prevents pursuit of the reality -- John K. Galbraith

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 8th, 2008 at 10:51:19 AM EST
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No, keynesian stimuli mean higher taxes, spending, state. The stimuli works by forcing (hopefully wise) spending, when economic actors do not want to spend any longer. Tax cuts are not stimuli in this context: the money is saved/deleveraged. This is exactly what "pushing on a string" means.

by Pierre on Wed Oct 8th, 2008 at 11:27:02 AM EST
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I don't see the stimuli as the alpha and omega of the Keynesian approach. As Migeru suggested above, we should associate Keynesianism with the problem rather that the solution. The point is not to push the stimuli no matter what is happening. The point is to solve macro-economic problems: if economy is down, it needs to be stimulated (by the state if "economic actors" are unwilling, increased government spending that incidentally requires higher taxes, what else?). If the economy is up, it can be cooled down by... hmmm... higher taxes. The Friedmanian approach is the opposite: if the economy is up, it "needs" to be accelerated further with tax cuts; if it is down, the market ought to revive itself without government intervention. At the end, relevance of taxes is acknowledged by both ideologies - but effectiveness of marginal tax rates probably depends on the cycle phase, and here Keynesians seem to estimate better. After all, the US got into this mess after accelerating bubbles with aggressive tax cuts. Tax cuts just flooded money to chase a series of assets; it didn't trickle down much to regular folks at the boom, and they get no help at the bust. Kenesianism seems to focus on people rather than on investment statistics better.

P.S. My previous comment is mistyped. It should start with
I agree that the US economy was under constant stimulation...

by das monde on Wed Oct 8th, 2008 at 09:35:57 PM EST
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