Sunday, February 03, 2008

Nick Cohen: economist

Strange to say, the worst bit of Nick Cohen's column today isn't actually the bit where he does his fashion correspondent turn. It's this bit:

"Labour politicians brought up on Keynesian economics should know what to do to limit the potential misery. In the US, the unlikely figure of George W Bush is showing them the way by proposing tax cuts for business to revive the economy.

<...>

[H]ard questions and mocking gazes will also be directed at policies less fashionable men and women once took for granted. Who conned a Labour government into giving undeserved tax breaks to private equity billionaires? Why did it throw so much money at schools, hospitals and the police without first ascertaining that it would be wisely spent?"

Shorter Nick Cohen, tax cuts for business, when done by George Bush = good. Tax cuts for business, when done by Gordon Brown = undeserved con. Keynesian economics = good in theory. Increasing spending on health, education and police = a waste.

Oh, and those Bush tax cuts? Here's someone who, unlike Nick, knows what they are talking about, explaining why they won't work and what needs to be done instead.

There was a time when Nick Cohen wouldn't have recycled wacky Republican economic policy without any critical analysis. I guess once you've got used to arguing for Bush's foreign policy, the even worse economic policy kind of follows.

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