An accessible, compelling introduction to today’s major policy issues from the New York Times columnist, best-selling author, and Nobel prize–winning economist Paul Krugman.
There is no better guide than Paul Krugman to basic economics, the ideas that animate much of our public policy. Likewise, there is no stronger foe of zombie economics, the misunderstandings that just won’t die.
In Arguing with Zombies, Krugman tackles many of these misunderstandings, taking stock of where the United States has come from and where it’s headed in a series of concise, digestible chapters. Drawn mainly from his popular New York Times column, they cover a wide range of issues, organized thematically and framed in the context of a wider debate. Explaining the complexities of health care, housing bubbles, tax reform, Social Security, and so much more with unrivaled clarity and precision, Arguing with Zombies is Krugman at the height of his powers.
Arguing with Zombies puts Krugman at the front of the debate in the 2020 election year and is an indispensable guide to two decades’ worth of political and economic discourse in the United States and around the globe. With quick, vivid sketches, Krugman turns his readers into intelligent consumers of the daily news and hands them the keys to unlock the concepts behind the greatest economic policy issues of our time. In doing so, he delivers an instant classic that can serve as a reference point for this and future generations.
Nobel Prize winning economist and liberal pundit Krugman (End This Depression Now!) attacks conservatives' policies and morals in these smart, tough essays. Selecting from his New York Times column and other writings, Krugman covers 15 years of "zombie ideas" that "keep shambling along, eating people's brains" because they serve the interests of the rich. These include George W. Bush's "snake-oil" scheme to privatize Social Security, Republican claims that Obamacare isn't working, and conservative dogma that cutting taxes on the wealthy helps the economy. Krugman occasionally resorts to charts and wonkery to refute such pretenses, but mainly exercises his great talent for translating economics into plain English: "My spending is your income and your spending is my income," he writes in a critique of recessionary budget cuts. "If we both slash spending, both of our incomes fall." Krugman's biting prose impugns character as well as doctrine the persistence of climate change denial, he asserts, means "Republicans don't just have bad ideas; at this point, they are, necessarily, bad people" and sometimes lapses into derangement syndrome, as when he characterizes the GOP as "an authoritarian regime in waiting." Progressive partisans will cheer Krugman's plainspoken, bare-knuckled, and persuasive ripostes to conservative orthodoxy.