By now, you’re probably tired of all the back-and-forth on Reinhart and Rogoff. That would be Harvard University’s Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff, the economists who co-authored the 2009 best-seller, “This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly,” and who are now on the firing line because of minor data errors in a 2010 working paper.
Unlike the movies, life rarely permits second takes. But the Second World War gave John Maynard Keynes, the patron saint of government activism, and Friedrich Hayek, the Cassandra who warned of the state’s destructive potential, just such opportunities.
Friedrich Hayek’s book “The Road to Serfdom” has served as a beacon for American conservatives since its publication in 1944. Today’s Republicans often cite the book in their fight to limit federal power and regulation. Hayek’s views, however, were more complicated than they often assume.
It’s no surprise that economic philosophies tend to divide along party lines. In the U.S., Democrats advocate government intervention in the economy and align with the theories of John Maynard Keynes. Republicans extol the free market and Friedrich Hayek, and think an economy should be allowed to self-correct with as little government intrusion as possible.