Niall Ferguson Has Not Admitted He Was Wrong About Inflationtags: Niall Ferguson
Adam Ozimek is a contributor for Forbes.
Economic Historian Niall Ferguson is upset with Paul Krugman for lacking both civility and the humility to admit when he is wrong. I’m a fan of more civility and humility in the blogosphere, and I happen to agree that Krugman can be both uncivil and overconfident. But while in general I stand ready to support calls for humility and civility, Niall Ferguson himself needs to do a better job of admitting past mistakes, and until he does I don’t blame people for not taking his complaints seriously.
The problem is from 2010, when Ferguson had this to say about inflation:
And the reason the CPI is losing credibility is that, as economist John Williams tirelessly points out, it’s a bogus index. The way inflation is calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics has been “improved” 24 times since 1978. If the old methods were still used, the CPI would actually be 10 percent. Yes, folks, double-digit inflation is back. Pretty soon you’ll be able to figure out the real inflation rate just by moving the decimal point in the core CPI one place to the right.
This may look like a modestly benign claim, or at least no more controversial than arguments you hear about what the “true unemployment rate” is. But this is really much much worse.
comments powered by Disqus
- Shipwreck Found Under World Trade Center Traced Back To Colonial Era Philadelphia
- Bob Dallek in the NYT gives a rave review of John Dean's history of Watergate cover-up
- Ex-President George W. Bush Authors Book About His Father
- Tears, and Anger, as Militants Destroy Iraq City’s Relics
- Europe notes 100th anniversary of World War I
- Why Benny Morris is both right and wrong
- Professor Ilan Pappé: Israel Has Chosen to be a 'Racist Apartheid State'
- History Professor: Convicted Cop Killer Mumia Should Be Celebrated Like Martin Luther King Jr. in Schools
- Robert Drew, Cinema Verite Documentarian, Dies at 90
- Rick Perlstein: “Ronald Reagan absolved America almost in a priestly role not to have to contend with sin. The consequences are all around us today”