Here’s something worth three cheers. Possibly four.
Robert Murphy is a prolific young economist of the free-market “Austrian” school of economics, which has a vibrant online presence at Mises.org, the website of the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
In October, Murphy decided to challenge Paul Krugman, the prominent economics professor, author and New York Times columnist, to a debate on Keynesian versus Austrian business cycle theory. After all, as Nobel-Prize-winning economist and partisan left-wing scribbler, Krugman tends to insist on policies the opposite of what any reasonable economic conclusion might be.
Krugman’s extremist, Big Government über alles positions should make for a great fireworks display in a well-attended debate with the scrupulously sane and reasonable Murphy. Point-counterpoint. The debate would also be a great venue for Murphy to publicize the sorely needed Austrian explanation of why massive governmental perversion of capital structure and market incentives ain’t exactly the best way to foster economic growth.
Murphy launched an Internet campaign, complete with goofy (and funny) animated YouTube video, to pressure Krugman. Murphy is asking folks to pledge a sum to the Fresh Food Program at a New York food bank that would be collected only if Krugman does debate him.
At last count, pledges have topped $50,000.
I hope Krugman agrees. Feeding hungry people is a good cause, and so is saving the economy from annihilation by Krugmanesque economics.
Meantime, give Murphy at least three huzzahs for pluck.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.