It's the Stupid Economy

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Who are you going to believe, Paul Krugman or your pocketbook?

Jonathan Chait has returned to liberal form and tells us that it must be Krugman, who is famously always right on the economy. 


Americans for some reason don't like paying 20% more for everything, or a doubling of their housing costs if they buy a new home, so they really need a reality check from the Nobel-prizewinning economist who insisted that the economy would never recover from Trump's election. 

One of the most uncomfortable arguments to make in America is that the people are wrong. It’s especially uncomfortable when the subject is something you experience in a more comfortable, privileged way than most people. And so when liberal economic elites insist the economy, which opinion polls consistently find the public considers terrible, is actually very good, it makes liberal economic elites come off badly.

Paul Krugman is one of those dreaded liberal elitists who believes the economy is actually good. So (at a much lower level of confidence and frequency) am I. We have developed a number of explanations for why people believe an economy that The Wall Street Journal recently called “the envy of the world” is so awful.

The most generous of these accounts is that people consider higher wages something they earned and higher inflation something that happened to them. But all the explanations involve conceding some level of basic irrationality on the part of the public. And the attempts to make sense of public assessments of the economy seem deeply unconvincing.


Higher wages don't mean anything if prices rise even faster, so Jonathan--I say this in the nicest way possible--shut up about higher wages. More and more people are running out of money before they run out of the month, and that is the actual metric by which we judge our personal experience of the economy. 

Measures of GDP--which, by the way, are artificially driven up by government debt and the massive influx of illegal aliens who are being given taxpayer dollars--don't tell you much. 

Increases in the job numbers say little when you find out that employment of native-born Americans is still below pandemic levels, and the new jobs have gone to immigrants. How does that help Americans?

Chait drops some statistics that are all nice sounding, but it all boils down to this: your experience doesn't matter; government statistics do. 

Well guess what, Jonathan? I trust those statistics just as much as I trust the claim that the jab will prevent infection and transmission of a virus, or that masks work, or that Paxlovid works (hint, it doesn't), or that Fauci is The Science™. Or that the MSM is truthful. Or that Nancy Pelosi doesn't trade stocks on inside information. Or that the border is secure. Or that Biden is all that stands between us and World War III. 


Look at jobs numbers. They keep getting juiced when announced and reduced in subsequent months. Screw the statistics. 

What I and others know is that we get lied to EVERY DAMN DAY, so take those statistics and shove them. 

I trust my wallet to tell me how I am doing, and it isn't as well as it should be. Everybody knows the same. 

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