Irish Liberty Forum

Keynesian Economics in One Lesson

with 2 comments

Expect inflation to head skywards in the UK.

Do you want to know how I know? It’s no secret. In fact, the decision to inflate was made by Alistair Darling when he revealed the Labour government’s plans to spend its way out of the current recession.

Under Keynes’ own framework, the economy is not self-correcting and can languish for years in what is termed “underemployment equilibrium”. The economy can be “in equilibrium” with high levels of unemployment. As such, a government stimulus of sorts is needed to jump-start the economy – much like a doctor defibrulating a patient.

I won’t bother dismissing these Keynesian assertions here (I’ll leave that to the pros). I will focus on the fact that even within the Keynesian framework, Darling’s move will be inflationary.

What Darling hopes to do is stimulate spending, which will increase aggeregate demand. This is illustrated by the rightward shift of the AD curve (below). The new equilibrium will occur at a higher output (GDP) and at a higher price level (P).

So when Mr. Darling revealed his massive spending spree he announced that Britons will not only be paying off UK government borrowing, but also paying an inflation tax in the near future.

So the lesson is… when prices in Britain begin to creep upwards, it’s because of government policy, not because of anything OPEC does in the next few days.


Written by 20000miles

October 24, 2008 at 1:01 am

2 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Hi 20000miles, I was wondering did Keynes think that the money printed by the printing press contained the same properties as that of money earned in the real economy?
    As in, do Keynesians realise that there will be a distortion in the pricing system from printed fiat?
    Or is it that they do not see it as a significant problem in their model and thus does not need to be addressed?


    October 26, 2008 at 3:24 pm

  2. I’m glad you asked Carl. The best description I could give about Keynesian economics is that it’s a monetary smoke-and-mirrors show. Inflation is only caused by an increase in the mystical aggeregate demand, and hence borrowing from abroad and printing won’t have disasterous effects.

    I think the biggest issue here is the belief that the economy can be somehow represented by a model like the one above, when there are in fact to many variables to capture.


    October 27, 2008 at 5:26 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: