Stimulus SmackDown: Can Deficit Spending Save the Economy?

Maybe you too are wondering if those folks in Washington DC who are merrily spending our money really know what they’re doing. If so, the Stimulus SmackDown debate (website, iTunes)) is for you. It pits the UC Berkeley economist Brad DeLong (pro-stimulus) against Washington University economist Michele Boldrin (anti-stimulus).

For the short version of the debate, check out this radio interview on Capital Public Radio’s Insight (website), featuring both participants.

The bottom line:

  1. Delong thinks that the government spending will create jobs and help the economy.
  2. Boldrin thinks the stimulus will be useless and simply get us deeper into debt.
  3. The moderator, UC Davis economist Gregory Clark, thinks that macro economics hasn’t progressed very much since the 1920s when economists were having the very same debate.

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