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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Mankiw agrees with false dichotomy

According to this, the key difference b/w a Democrat and Republican is that Democrats care about the less fortunate at the expense of the general taxpayer while Republicans care about the general taxpayer while failing to wholly account for the less fortunate.

I don't think that's accurate at all.

There were a number of people over the last 3 days at the Democratic National Convention that expressed real concern for middle American taxpayers and small business owners. The difference, more accurately portrayed is this:

Democrats care about distributional issues and the potential economic growth a well diversified and and relatively more equalized economy can bring, at the expense of the richest Americans. Republicans care about the idea of textbook (underscore textbook - with all it's unrealistic assumptions and simplistic models) economic growth at the expense of the down-trodden.

That's really all it is. Though, to be fair, I need to caveat the Republican philosophy, I do not think most Republicans want to have policies at the expense of the less well off. But I do think they cling to a false notion that the growth via textbook economics will trickle-down or will somehow magically make most all of the less fortunate more well off in the long-run. But as we all know, economics as a profession (I should say mainstream economic profession - there are some that have embraced a more encompassing economics) has ignored and completely detached ideas of equity from efficiency, so this unfettered short-sighted growth never really pays off the way Republicans want it to.

6 comments:

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