Thursday, July 1, 2010

Fearless violaters of logic

Lest you have any doubts about the total economic ignorance that pervades the internet, this should remove any doubts. Consider the following comments that were made by several brilliant men on a certain internet thread.

Still, it's pretty hard to argue with the fact that a wartime command economy putting people back to work like crazy was one of the most instructive case for keynesianism.

I'm a liberal and I'm fairly certain WWII is what got us out of the Depression. Because a whole bunch of jobs opened up all of a sudden, and the unemployed and the technically-not-unemployed ( or did labor stats back then include 'sick of expending effort looking for jobs that either aren't out there or won't hire me'?) became the employed. If we could duplicate that without putting a bunch of people in uniform to go shoot people, we might be getting somewhere.

"The war" was massive government spending, public employment, and even industrial control boards, hardly an indictment of government interventionism.

There you have it, words of wisdom from the intellectually super powered. Now all we have to do is get everyone to dig holes and then fill them up again and we'll get ourselves out of our present economic predicament! I don't have a PHD in economics or anything, but something tells me that that is not how a real economy actually functions.

What these illiterate morons have trouble grasping is that employment is not synonymous with wealth. The two are not totally unrelated, but they are far from the same. Employing millions of people to fire darts at a target purposelessly doesn't improve the economy, it impoverishes it. Government stimulus -- war is a so called stimulus -- is a parasite that diverts resources and human capital away from productive sectors to useless ones. War is an extreme form of parasitism, it only builds to destroy.

Ironically, however, is that even though their reasoning is laughably baseless, their conclusion regarding the historical remedy of the Great Depression is nevertheless sound.

WW2 really did get the U.s economy going, though for an entirely different reason than these clowns would have it. It wasn't the fact that the government employed millions of people during the war time that stimulated the U.S economy, it was the fact that we wiped out the industrial base of Europe and Japan. Our manufacturing industry grew exponentially during the post-war years because we rebuilt Europe's infrastructure for them.

Now that wasn't so hard, was it?

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