If You Want To Be Serious Don't Figure Things Out Too Soon

Paul Krugman

Photo: NYtimes.com

Atrios is annoyed at David Wessel, and rightly so. I’d summarize Wessel’s column a bit differently: it’s roughly “Some people thought from the beginning that the stimulus should have been much bigger. Hahaha! Also, it turns out that the stimulus was too small, so we need some more.”This is actually a fairly familiar thing from my years as a pundit: the surest way to get branded as not Serious is to figure things out too soon. To be considered credible on politics you have to have considered Bush a great leader, and not realised until Katrina that he was a disaster; to be considered credible on national security you have to have supported the Iraq War, and not realised until 2005 that it was a terrible mistake; to be credible on economics you have to have regarded Greenspan as a great mind, and not become disillusioned until 2007 or maybe 2008.

Read the rest of this article at The New York Times.

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