Though their subject matter is technical, economists and business writers can still throw hot-blooded fights. Economist Paul
Krugman demonstrated that by getting his dander up at fellow New York Times writer Andrew
Ross Sorkin. In a blog post bluntly entitled "Andrew Ross Sorkin
Owes Several People An Apology," Kurgman cuffs
the Times business writer for "caricaturing" his views in a recent
article. Krugman, known for clearly
articulating complex economic concepts, rebutted Sorkin for claiming that Krugman and NYU economist Nouriel Roubini had called for "nationalizing the entire bank system," and had believed Wall Street's "walking dead" banks were beyond saving:
I certainly never said anything like that, and I don’t think Nouriel did either. First of all, I never called for “nationalizing the entire banking system” — I wanted the government to take temporary full ownership of a few weak banks, mainly Citigroup and possibly B of A. I defy Sorkin to find any examples of me calling for a total takeover.
If you want to say that the advocates of nationalization were excessively pessimistic about the prospects for a light-touch bank strategy, fine. But caricaturing their position, making it sound far more extreme than it actually was, is definitely not OK.