Good economics makes for strange company

As you may recall, I showed that the CEA’s employment forecast, wrong as it has been, was simply a prediction of a return to trend and that Paul Krugman’s charges that the CEA has become corrupt are irresponsible and unjustified. (Sadly, Brad Delong has also signed on to these charges.)

I find myself in surprising company. In Salon, the left-leaning James K. Galbraith presents almost the same graph and the same conclusion.

Was Economic Team Bush getting its job targets, as many suspect, from Karl Rove? Did the professionals turn prostitute, as Krugman charges in no uncertain words?….Our new chart shows that the Bush forecast did not imply unusually rapid job growth for an economic expansion. …the failure of the jobs forecast did not occur because economic recovery forecasts were abnormal. They were not. So far as we can tell, it did not occur because someone cooked the books, under instruction or otherwise.

Shouldn’t DeLong and Krugman be worried when they fall to the left of Galbraith?

See also Econopundit who writes, “every economist who, like me, runs models with new quarterly data giving alternate (and possibly less-optimistic) employment forecasts is owed an apology. I have falsified nothing, but my results have been similar to those shown in the chart. I have reported the numbers that resulted from running a known model openly available to any and all (including Paul Krugman) who are competent to use it.”

Thanks to The Big Picture for the Galbraith link.


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