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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/8982/its-all-my-fault/

It’s all my fault

November 18, 2008 by

I’m late, and I’m sorry. My only excuse is that The Columbus Dispatch printed Thomas Friedman’s “Gonna Need a Bigger Boat” today, two days after it was originally published. Still, I should have known better.

According to Friedman, in order to save the economy there is one thing that we “must do right now: go shopping.” Since now was Sunday, I’m dreadfully late. And it gets even worse — I do not plan to shop within the next eight days. Gee, I certainly hope my waiting until Black Friday doesn’t sink the Friedmanian boat, so to speak.

For the “bah, humbug” types, Friedman notes that we must also save. But we only save after the Bush economic team “turn[s] off the green light and [tells] people to ‘go save.’”

Got that? After the green light is off. Until then, max out the credit cards and save the economy. And do it now!

{ 9 comments }

Francisco Torres November 18, 2008 at 10:47 pm

It doesn’t surprise me what Mr. Friedman prescribes for us. Him, like all Keynesians, will always subscribe to the notion that consumption is what drives the economy, instead of productivity. This fallacy is well placed in the economics illiterate as the other one about focusing on job creation, as if either was the end all, be all of human economic activity.

scineram November 19, 2008 at 4:16 am
Andy November 19, 2008 at 7:52 am

Let me know when mr. obama says it’s ok to stop spending, thanks.

J Cortez November 19, 2008 at 8:42 am

Wow. I’ve never read Thomas Friedman, but that article is horrendous.

William Rader November 19, 2008 at 10:28 am

I read Mr. Friedman’s article late last night and again this morning. There is a large disconnect between what Mr. Friedman is proposing and my own financial planning (spending vs. acquiring hard money).

Mr. Friedman’s article has a very hollow, unconvincing tone to it. It sounds more as if it was written for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as a run-up to the holiday season. Unfortunately, I think the truth is that this may be the last holiday season for some of the big-name, long-established retailers. I find this sad, because, having grown up in the 1950s and 1960s, I still love the sounds and smells of the big department stores. These are memories that I will never associate with Wal-Mart and Target. Also, the new Sears stores have all the ambiance of super-sized barns.

(8?» November 19, 2008 at 11:05 am

If Mr. Friedman would extend a personal loan to me at Fed terms (below market rates, rolled over infinitely), why I would be glad to use it to spur on the economy. He could even securitize it and sell it, for all I care.

Ya think he’ll take me up on the offer?

Enjoy Every Sandwich November 19, 2008 at 11:21 am

Boy, talk about “central planning”. This is central planning to the max: where government tells individuals when they’re allowed to spend the money they earn (well, what’s left after the government takes their cut).

I wonder if Friedman himself is waiting for the green light to go off.

newson November 20, 2008 at 2:15 am

“consumption accounts for two-thirds of gdp”. this is the rallying-cry of almost all of the boosters in the media.
until more effort is expended to discredit gdp as a concept, we’ll constantly be hearing this true, albeit misleading, riff.

Bill November 20, 2008 at 7:47 am

I guess that we should listen to Freidman, Clinton, Clinton, Bush, Bush, Paulson, Obama, McCain, Greenspan, Palin, the pig nosed guy and some religious nuts (Especially Palin because she is good looking?) because these people would never let us get into a situation like this so ergo it MUST BE our collective fault.

Never mind your own intuition about the vast amount of inflation spewing from Washington or the vast amount of your money being given to hyper-wealthy. Never mind about job loss or business failures. Never mind about any of that.

JUST OBEY!!!!!!

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