Krugman’s blog, 1/15/16

There were three posts yesterday.  The first was “The Onion Predicted Ted Cruz:”

Does anyone remember the classic first post-9/11 issue, whichdeclared “Rest of Country Temporarily Feels Deep Affection for New York”? (I can’t find a direct link.) Sure enough, Ted Cruz has declared war on “New York values.”

America’s finest news source, indeed.

The second post yesterday was “Neil Cavuto and the Dynamics of Misinformation:”

Josh Marshall notes that during last night’s debate Neil Cavuto seemed to imply that the financial crisis happened on Obama’s watch without saying anything explicitly false. Indeed. But there’s something else going on here, and it’s part of a larger pattern.

I’ve talked in the past about how negative views of Obamacare get propagated:

It goes like this: a lot of the untrue beliefs people have about Obamacare come not so much from outright false reporting as from selective reporting. Every suggestion of bad news gets highlighted — especially, of course, but not only by Fox, the WSJ, etc.. But when it turns out that the news wasn’t really that bad, these sources just move on. There are claims that millions of people are losing coverage — headlines! When it turns out not to be true — crickets! Some experts claim that premiums will rise by double digits — big news! Actual premium numbers come in and they’re surprisingly low — not mentioned.

Something similar applies to economic and market news. Cavuto spoke about the dip in stocks that took place in the very early days of the Obama presidency — which, not incidentally, led a lot of the usual suspects to declare that his policies had already failed — and about the decline in the past few weeks. Somehow no mention of what happened in between. Here’s the full picture:

It would be interesting to poll Republicans about what happened to the stock market under Obama; my bet is that many, perhaps a majority, believe that it went down, thanks to this technique of only reporting the bad news.

The last post yesterday was “Monetary Economics at the GOP Debate:”

There wasn’t much economics, or for that matter much connection with reality. But Ted Cruz delivered:

I would note that Art Laffer, Ronald Reagan’s chief economic adviser, has written publicly, that my simple flat tax is the best tax plan of any of the individuals on this stage cause it produces economic growth, it raises wages and it helps everyone from the very poorest to the very richest.

Yep, lots of credibility:

But being a conservative means never having to say you’re sorry for predicting inflation.



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