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Posts Categorized: Media

The Reinhart/Rogoff Debate Continued, in The New York Times

by Robert Pollin and Michael Ash

Last Friday, The New York Times published a lengthy response by Reinhart and Rogoff to our critique of their work in “Growth in a Time of Debt,” and the ensuing worldwide debate.  We have replied to them, which appeared in the Times online Monday night. As you can see below, we did not find their defense at all convincing. We also go into these issues in much more depth in a technical appendix here.

Debt and Growth: A Response to Reinhart and Rogoff

The debate over government debt and its relationship to economic growth is at the forefront of policy debates across the industrialized world. The role of the economics profession in shaping the debate has always come under scrutiny.


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The Reinhart-Rogoff Reassessment in the Media

by admin

Updated May 9

In this new paper, Thomas Herndon, Michael Ash and Robert Pollin look carefully at the analysis underlying a cornerstone of government austerity plans: studies by Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff which correlate national debt-to-GDP ratios over 90% with sharp declines in growth. Their critique has struck a live wire in the media. Some interesting highlights are:

Paul Krugman’s blog in The New York Times
Mike Konczal on RortyBomb
Moneybox blog on Slate
Wonkblog in the Wall Street Journal
FTAlphaville blog in the Financial Times
Dean Baker in The Guardian
Josh Bivens on the EPI blog
Jared Bernstein’s blog
Arin Dube on RortyBomb
Mary Bottari on PRWatch

and a sampling of the rest…


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In the Media: How Serious Would the Effects of the Sequester Be?

by admin

Robert Pollin is quoted at length by Nicole Debevec on United Press International: “The Issue: Is the sequester a ‘whoa’ or a ‘yikes’ that’s just days away?

But just how serious will it be if the sequester takes place? Will it really be as dire as some say?

“Imposing spending cuts tied to the sequester will certainly hurt the U.S. economic recovery, since it means job losses, which in turn means that people will have less money in their pockets to boost an economic recovery,” said Robert Pollin, professor of economics and director of the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts.

The U.S. recovery is already stalled, Pollin said, noting the Gross Domestic Product growth was zero last quarter and the jobless rate rose slightly from 7.8 percent to 7.9 percent.

“Imposing the sequester cuts will not help,” he said.

Abroad, he said, the message would be mixed.

“On the one hand, the debate around the sequester suggests that the U.S. is highly concerned about the fiscal deficit,” Pollin said. “However, it also suggests that our political leaders can’t come up with a more nuanced approach to dealing with the deficit.”

Because Washington is saying the United States’ top economic concern is the deficit, not mass unemployment, Pollin said in the next year, “pursuing an austerity agenda will be harmful to a U.S. and global recovery of employment. Over time that will have a negative effect on the reputation of the United States.”

Read more:


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An Interview with Laura Flanders

by admin

I sat down with Laura Flanders of GritTV to discuss some of the main themes of Back to Full Employment.  As always, Laura was very well prepared in leading the discussion.  I think she did an especially good job in bringing out the deep tensions between the analytic policy issues involved in creating a full employment economy and the political barriers to achieving it.  A short version of the interview is here:

A longer version is here:


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