I feel guilty in not upholding my turf here at EconoSpeak; I should be issuing thunderbolts about the debt ceiling negotiations, the sagging economy, the slo-mo Eurozone meltdown, and similar perils. But I can’t seem to do it. The whole bloody mess is just too stupid.
The US economy is clearly floundering, and elementary macroeconomics says we need fiscal stimulus, yet both Obama and the Republicans are debating how to strangle the public sector in order to raise a debt limit that makes no sense in the first place. Eurozone politicians crow over their success in imposing yet another austerity-cum-bailout package on Greece, one that no independent economic observer, much less the financial markets, have the slightest faith in. (As if rounding up the rating agencies and sending them to some Euro-Guantanamo will keep peripheral sovereign rates from marching ever upward.)
There are lots of interesting, complex issues in political economy. None of that matters now: the world is in the hands of politicians governed by expediency calculations whose time horizon can be measured in weeks. As far as I can tell, the gross illogic of their policies is simply beside the point.