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Contra Krugman

Join Bob Murphy and Tom Woods in this weekly libertarian podcast as they teach economics by refuting Paul Krugman's New York Times column. Plus, expect special guests like Ron Paul, David Stockman, and more!
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Contra Krugman
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Sep 30, 2016

All the Republicans want to do is cut taxes on the rich, says Krugman, but Hillary has lots of programs she wants to enact for "working families." And each one is obtuse in its own special way.

Show notes for Ep. 54

Sep 23, 2016
Krugman sternly lectures millennials: DO NOT vote for Gary Johnson. You are wasting your vote. Plus, the Libertarian Party platform is nuts!
 
We respond, in one of Tom's favorite episodes of Contra Krugman.
 
Show notes for Ep. 53
Sep 17, 2016

Krugman suggests that the image of Hillary Clinton as particularly untruthful is a fabrication of the right-wing noise machine. We remind him of some uncomfortable truths.

Show notes for Ep. 52

Sep 9, 2016

This week, Krugman is unhappy about the adverse health effects of lead paint, which only Hillary Clinton wants to eradicate. This is typical, Krugman says: Republicans (which in his mind is synonymous with free-market people) hate science and love when poor people are unsafe and die.

Show notes for Ep. 51

Sep 3, 2016

Why have mortality rates among pregnant women in Texas doubled in recent years? There's no one explanation, Krugman admits -- and then proceeds to pounce on one explanation: cuts to Planned Parenthood.

And you'll never guess: Krugman is full of it!

Show notes for Ep. 50

Aug 29, 2016

The bad news keeps piling up for Obamacare: Aetna, for example, is pulling out of a lot of the exchanges. The failures are everywhere now. According to Krugman, a little tinkering here and there would fix it, if it weren't for all the unreasonable right-wingers. OK, Paul.

Show notes for Ep. 49

Aug 20, 2016
We know how to do some things, Krugman says, like deliver health care to everyone, provide for people's retirement, and increase the wages of low-income people. But economic growth? That's a tough nut to crack, he says. We can try infrastructure spending, but maybe even that won't work.
 
We bring some Contra Krugman awesomeness to this pile of confusion.
 
Show notes for Ep. 48
Aug 13, 2016
With long-term interest rates low and no shortage of ideas for public-works projects, Krugman says now's the time to do -- wait for it -- lots of borrowing and spending.
 
Actually, you know what it's really time for?
 
Show notes for Ep. 47
Aug 5, 2016
This week, Krugman appeals to Republican opponents of Donald Trump and says: Hillary won't be a disaster, in all likelihood, even from your point of view. If she continues the center-left policies of Obama, we'll continue to have a good economy.
 
We're unconvinced.
 
Show notes for Ep. 46
Aug 2, 2016

In this special episode of Contra Krugman, recorded live at the Mises Institute's Mises University summer instructional program for college students, Bob and Tom are joined by three other professors: Peter Klein (Baylor University), Lucas Englehardt (Kent State University), and Mark Thornton (Mises Institute).

Show notes for Ep. 45

Jul 24, 2016

Is a rising stock market an indication of economic health? Not necessarily, says Krugman, and on that he's of course correct. But what accounts for rising stock prices today? He says a lack of alternative options for investors -- another way of saying the economy stinks, even though he devotes half his columns to defenses of Obama.

Show notes for Ep. 44

Jul 16, 2016

This week, Krugman considers several possible explanations for why long-term interest rates are so low around the world. The one he settles on: investors have concluded that the weak economy is the new normal, so to speak, so they're willing to accept low yields. But this explanation contradicts Krugman's repeated insistence that the Obama recovery is stronger than ignorant right-wingers give it credit for. Which is it, Paul?

Show notes for Ep. 43

Jul 9, 2016

This week, Krugman is unhappy that Donald Trump has earned a reputation as a defender of workers. How can he be, wonders Krugman, if he doesn't support Obamacare, more privileges for labor unions, higher taxes on the rich, and so on?

Show notes for Ep. 42

Jun 21, 2016

Krugman urges the British to remain in the European Union, and thinks free-market arguments against it are mere fantasy. In fact, British exit from the EU would be a great step forward for freedom, as Bob and Tom show in this week's episode.

Show notes for Ep. 41

Jun 19, 2016

This week, Krugman suggests that the Republican Party attracts scammers and shysters who build email lists of gullible conservatives and then market fearmongering products or "get-rich-quick" schemes to them. Thank goodness the Democrats never do anything like that! They teach that the only way to prosper is through hard work and individual initiative, and.... Well, anyway, this is a juicy episode. Listen to it, or the world will end.

Show notes for Ep. 40

Jun 12, 2016

Krugman admits the recent job numbers aren't so good, but says there's an easy solution: fiscal stimulus. Waiting for actual examples of successful fiscal stimulus? You won't find them in this column, and for good reason....

Show notes for Ep. 39

Jun 5, 2016

This week, Krugman makes one decent point: successful businessmen aren't necessarily any good on economics. No argument there. Krugman doesn't quite get why his insight is true, but at least it's something. Bob and Tom discuss (1) why government can't be run like a business, (2) why falling wages need not be a catastrophe for "aggregate demand," (3) whether it makes sense to speak of a "manager" of the economy, and more.

Show notes for Ep. 38

Jun 1, 2016

In this column, Krugman takes things to a whole new level. He tries to draw lessons from the Clinton boom in the 1990s, which he incorrectly says was better than the Reagan boom, even though he himself admits there are no applicable lessons from that boom. It's awful, and we beat him to an intellectual pulp.

Show notes for Ep. 37

May 23, 2016

This episode was recorded before a live audience in Seattle on May 21, 2016, as part of the Mises Institute's event in Seattle. Krugman had been giving us thin gruel all week, but then, the day before the event, he gave us such a whopper of a column it was like a giant gift with a big red bow on it.

Show notes for Ep. 36

May 15, 2016

You'll never guess: Krugman contradicts himself this week, but only Bob Murphy, who knows Krugman's columns inside and out, caught him. This week the topic is whether it's a good idea at some point to repay the national debt at less than face value. Krugman is horrified, so maybe it's a good idea....

Show notes for Ep. 35

May 7, 2016

Surveying the economic stagnation in Europe, all Krugman can come up with is an alleged need for more government spending.

Show notes for Ep. 34

Apr 30, 2016

According to Krugman, we should embrace the ideas of Alexander Hamilton, particularly his view that the national debt is in fact a "national blessing." We are unconvinced!

Show notes for Ep. 33

Apr 23, 2016

Krugman is now blaming poor economic times (but hasn't he been trying to tell us things are much better than the stupid right-wingers say?) on a lack of competition. Lax antitrust enforcement is the problem! Sure it is. In fact, antitrust itself is the problem, as we show in this week's episode.

Apr 15, 2016

Krugman is upset this week at a judicial ruling that held that the government's case for naming MetLife a Systemically Important Financial Institution (SIFI) was inadequate and should be thrown out. Sure, it's impossible to nail down what the criteria for a SIFI are, says Krugman, but so what? We take on the whole issue -- not just MetLife, but the whole idea of extra regulation for so-called SIFIs.

Show notes for Ep. 31

Apr 9, 2016

Krugman argues that blinkered conservatives and cynical progressives alike have failed to appreciate the successes of the Obama presidency. He concentrates on four areas: the economy, health care, financial reform, and climate change. We concentrate on those areas, too -- and come up with rather different conclusions. Dan Mitchell, Senior Fellow of the Cato Institute, joins us as a special guest this week.

Show notes for Ep. 30

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