Indonesia | Economics

Monday, July 24, 2006

The armchair journalist

Paul Krugman, economist par excellence, on his current profession as a journalist in this F&D article written by Arvind Subramanian...:
[To Krugman], the normal journalistic ethic of balance and moderation, which he disparagingly dubs "he-said-she-said journalism," was less a virtue than an intellectual shortcoming—an unwillingness or inability to process information independently and come to considered conclusions.
and this on Krugman:
Krugman's abiding belief, like that of Keynes, is that ideas matter and matter a lot. The role of public intellectuals is less to come up with good ideas, which is fiendishly hard, but more to serve as a watchdog to get rid of bad ideas and prevent their coming back. There are more bad ideas and more purveyors of bad ideas than their benign counterparts. And the asymmetry is further compounded because, in Yeats's words, "The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity."
Which explains why, for all their rights and wrongs, Krugman's articles are always interesting.


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