Paul Krugman: Conservatives believe the economic elite are superheroes — they're not

The myths of conservative economic orthodoxy are precisely that — myths

By Scott Eric Kaufman
Published January 11, 2016 12:47PM (EST)
 Paul Krugman at The Commonwealth Club (<a href="" target="_blank">Commonwealth Club</a>/Creative Commons License)
Paul Krugman at The Commonwealth Club (Commonwealth Club/Creative Commons License)

In his Monday New York Times column, economist Paul Krugman debunked the myths of conservative economic orthodoxy when it comes to job creation -- in particular, "the motivations of corporations and wealthy individuals."

Every time the Obama administration has supported new legislation that would impact the job sector in any way, shape, or form -- for example, the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill or Obamacare -- conservatives have howled that it would kill jobs. In point of fact, since 2010, the American economy has gained 14 million jobs in the private sector, "roughly double the number of jobs added during the supposed Bush boom."

The image of the economic elite doesn't even make any sense, he added, because

[o]n one side, this elite is presumed to be a bunch of economic superheroes, able to deliver universal prosperity by summoning the magic of the marketplace. On the other side, they’re depicted as incredibly sensitive flowers who wilt in the face of adversity — raise their taxes a bit, subject them to a few regulations, or for that matter hurt their feelings in a speech or two, and they’ll stop creating jobs and go sulk in their tents, or more likely their mansions...

Read the rest at the New York Times...

US Economy Adds 292,000 Jobs In December

Scott Eric Kaufman

Scott Eric Kaufman is an assistant editor at Salon. He taught at a university, but then thought better of it. Follow him at @scottekaufman or email him at

MORE FROM Scott Eric KaufmanFOLLOW scottekaufmanLIKE Scott Eric Kaufman

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Aol_on Economics George W. Bush Jobs Paul Krugman President Barack Obama