Man Without Qualities

Tuesday, December 10, 2002

All Krugman, All The Time!

Well, Paul Krugman just keeps getting more and more prolific! Now he's posted a squib asserting that Mickey Kaus is trying convince the world that "even Krugman's old students are attacking him." Kausfiles' sin was to ambiguously write: "Krugman was an adviser for Drezner's Ph.D. dissertation," where Professor Krugman was only an outside chair to the defense of the thesis (not Mr. Drezner's doctoral advisor). Krugman's howl is absurd because, as Kausfiles points out, the full story is set out in the very same Drezner post to which Kausfiles links. Worse, Professor Krugman does not offer a word of rebuttal to the substance of Mr. Drezner's analysis. That would have taken some real effort and imagination on Professor Krugman's part. This Krugman-piffle certainly supports Drezner's thesis that the quality and quantity of Professor Krugman's output are inversely related.

Indeed, Professor Krugman's recent ever more massive textual extrusions are perhaps best explained by an old story from post-war physics:

Each volume of the the main physics journal at the time was exponentially larger than its predecessor. Alarmed, one physics professor exclaimed that if present trends continued, a stack of the journal's volumes would soon have to grow faster than the speed of light! His colleague comforted him by pointing out that because the information content of the articles in the journal was rapidly going to zero, expansion of the journal at more than the speed of light would NOT violate relativity!

No doubt Professor Krugman is counting on the same effect in his current inflationary epoch.

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