Imagine you are a columnist or have been contracted to write an opinion piece, for a quality publication such as The Economist or The Financial Times or Fortune. You have been asked to express your view of policy reactions to the current world recession and aftermath of the financial crash. Where do you stand on the dispute between austerity and stimulus?
Deal with the following issues
Indicate the relevance of the dispute between Keynes and (what he called) orthodoxy to the current policy debate.
What is the relevance of the multiplier?
What problems may there be in applying a Keynesian stimulus to ease the strain of the recession.
What problems are there in seeking to deal with government debt by austerity in the midst of recession (what would Keynes have said about that?)
What signs are there that policies of either austerity or stimulus are working?
What will I evaluate?
Clear writing.
Grasp of the relevant theoretical views as dealt with in the textbook; and policy debate.
Logical clarity
Whether you support claims you make with evidence and argument.
Whether you show you can anticipate opposing views.
What to read?
Use the relevant parts of the textbook – where Sloman discusses disputes between proponents of austerity and stimulus as well as the wider issues of dispute between Keynesians and their opponents.
Use topical news stories and opinion pieces from the quality press and serious economics websites