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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

'Clever Counterintuitiveness' is often 'Sloppy and Ill-informed'

Paul Krugman on "the famed TNR/Slate premium on being 'counterintuitive', which in practice meant skewering supposed liberal pieties":

if you went back through all the clever counterintuitiveness of past years, you’d find that a lot of it was every bit as sloppy and ill-informed as what we’re seeing now. The difference is the existence now of a policy blogosphere (in economics, of course, but in a number of disciplines too), which makes bluffing harder. In the past grotesquely ill-informed articles on, say, the Clinton health plan could sit out there for years, with only a handful of specialists aware of just how bad they were; now the pundit emperor’s nakedness is all over the web within days if not hours.
And if this leads to hurt feelings – well, this is not a game. We’re having a discussion about policies that affect tens of millions of people. And you have no business participating in this discussion if you’re so busy trying to sound clever that you can’t be bothered to do your homework.

Even so, the degree to which bad/false ideas can be used to support political goals is still pretty frustrating.

    Posted by on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 09:45 AM Permalink  Comments (18)


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