90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Paul Krugman: $1 Trillion More in Stimulus

The U.S. government should consider up to $1 trillion more in stimulus spending and should not seek to address deficit concerns until the unemployment rate returns to “around 7 percent,” says economist Paul Krugman.

Paul Krugman (AP)

Krugman, a New York Times columnist and leading voice in the current public debate over deficits and spending, told On Point host Tom Ashbrook Wednesday that he remains worried about the American financial future, unless more government money is pumped into the economy.

“I’m deeply concerned that we may be in this trap of high unemployment, probably deflation, for a very long time,” said Krugman, who won the 2008 Nobel Prize in economics. “I mean, under current projections, which I think are over-optimistic, we might not be seeing anything that looks remotely like full employment until well into Sarah Palin’s first term.”

Listen to an excerpt from the interview:

Krugman said that with an “adequate program” of stimulus spending he would expect the unemployment rate to drop to near 7 percent in 2011. At that point, he said, the government could pivot toward addressing deficit concerns by making a “deal” with the Federal Reserve, which will eventually want to raise interest rates as the economy recovers. He said austerity measures could be implemented with the understanding that the Fed would hold off on a rate hike, in order to maintain economic momentum.

Ashbrook also asked Krugman about political resistance to more spending, particularly from more conservative Democrats. (For a clear presentation of the nuanced positions within the current Washington debate see Ezra Klein’s blog today for the Washington Post.)

“I think the Blue Dogs, the conservative Democrats who are opposing this, are being really, really stupid even from a political point of view,” Krugman said. “They look at polls and say, ‘Well, the public is worried about deficits.’ Well, the public is actually worried about jobs.”

For a contrary view, see what Harvard economic historian Niall Ferguson told On Point recently about Krugman’s pro-stimulus ideas.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Jan 23, 2015
A Cuban flag and an American flag stand in the press room during the second day of talks between U.S. and Cuban officials, in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. (AP)

President Obama comes out swinging in his State of the Union. High level talks in Cuba. Japanese hostages. “American Sniper” controversy. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Jan 23, 2015
People enter the Arapahoe County Justice Center in Centennial, Colo., Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. The jury selection process in the trial of Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes began Tuesday, and is expected to take several weeks to a few months. Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and wounding more than 50 in an Aurora movie theater in 2012 (AP)

The Marathon bombing, the Aurora movie theater shootings, and the challenges of picking an impartial jury.

RECENT
SHOWS
Jan 23, 2015
People enter the Arapahoe County Justice Center in Centennial, Colo., Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. The jury selection process in the trial of Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes began Tuesday, and is expected to take several weeks to a few months. Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and wounding more than 50 in an Aurora movie theater in 2012 (AP)

The Marathon bombing, the Aurora movie theater shootings, and the challenges of picking an impartial jury.

 
Jan 23, 2015
A Cuban flag and an American flag stand in the press room during the second day of talks between U.S. and Cuban officials, in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. (AP)

President Obama comes out swinging in his State of the Union. High level talks in Cuba. Japanese hostages. “American Sniper” controversy. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: January 23, 2015
Friday, Jan 23, 2015

New thoughts on Facebook, new analysis of State of the Union twitter activity and new weekend excitement. New! And exciting!

More »
Comment
 
Meet On Point’s Interns: Spring 2015
Friday, Jan 23, 2015

Good news! We have interns, and they are wonderful, and here they are for the spring term. Meet them digitally, right here.

More »
2 Comments
 
Caller To Author Ron Rash: ‘You Cared About People Like Me’
Thursday, Jan 22, 2015

An unexpected caller from South Carolina brings back guest Ron Rash’s years as a community college professor in a movingly real way.

More »
Comment