WASHINGTON, April 27, 2012— Pessimism marks the attitudes of top economics bloggers in a new quarterly survey conducted over the last 48 hours by Dr. Tim Kane, Chier Economist at Hudson Institute. Three of four respondents describe the U.S. economy as “mixed,” while the same number think it is “facing recession” as believe it is “strong with uncertain growth.” Worse, only 6 percent of respondents believe the economy is “better than official government statistics show,” while 33 percent think it is worse.
“After nearly three years of seeing how ahead of the curve this disorganized group is, I’d match their insights and wisdom against anyone,” said Kane. “The beauty of the economics blogging community is its ideological diversity, where a majority of bloggers favor fighting inequality in the United States while at the same time mocking the gimmicky ‘Buffett Rule.’ What really should catch our attention is the long-term skepticism the bloggers have about a strong or easy recovery, particularly in Europe.”
Research highlights include:
- Over the next three years, bloggers do anticipate mild growth in U.S. output, employment, and labor force participation. On the other hand, more respondents than not see higher budget deficits and more poverty over the next three years as well.
- Bloggers anticipate a recession in 2012 as most likely in the Eurozone, followed closely by Argentina, with four other economies far less likely (the United States, China, Japan, and developing economies).
- Policy recommendations of the bloggers for the United States tend to favor defense cuts, doing more to reduce inequality, and allowing states to set their own minimum wages. Most tax reforms were panned by the group, notably the “Buffet Rule” which was opposed by 59 percent of respondents (with more strong opposition than any other policy). Adopting a flat tax or a value-added tax were also unpopular ideas, though the group did generally endorse capping tax deductions and credits per household.
- Jeff Miller (A Dash of Insight) asked a question about Federal Reserve policy. A surprisingly large majority of economics bloggers believe the presidential election slightly affects monetary policy by shaping perceptions of the economy.
- One question asked bloggers to identify the partisan voting on 9 key pieces of legislation over the last 12 years. Every one of the four major pieces of legislation advanced under President Barack Obama were ranked as sharply more partisan than the five major pieces of legislation advanced under President George W. Bush.
Haiku on Taxes Submitted by Economics Bloggers
Continuing a tradition recommended by technology blogger Robert X. Cringely, the group submitted a series of haiku. This quarter, the haiku deal with the issue of taxes in celebration of April 17th when federal taxes were due.
Entries include: \
A thousand plum trees, They drag their broken branches. No water till you bloom!
Noni Mausa (Angry Bear)
crazy tax language crazy lying candidates see the connection?
David Zetland (Aguanomics)
democracy is a dance not an abstraction. make institutions.
Steve Waldman (interfluidity)
Emancipation Day and Sunday, Two Extra Days to Stall that Check
David Tufte (voluntaryXchange)
If AUMF Was truly bipartisan Bad economics rules
Ken Houghton (Angry Bear)
Mayans off a year. In twenty-thirteen cometh the Taxmageddon.
Will Franklin (WILLisms.com)
Missing Pulitzer No Prize winner for fiction? Try US budget!
Jeff Miller (A Dash of Insight)
Our problems abound in a culture divided. Demographic pain.
Doug Short (dshort – Advisor Perspectives)
Seriously, though When will the top 1% Ever catch a break?
Ryan Avent (Free Exchange)
Sleeping dog, China Yuan and dollar intertwined Better let him lie
Wade Roush (Xconomy)
Taxmaggedon looms. The time for reform draws near. Broad base and low rates.
Donald Marron (dmarron.com)
Washington DC Popes Selling Indulgences Good Business Models
Arnold Kling (EconLog)
Way too much spending Makes debt crisis even worse Future doom assured
Craig Eyermann (Political Calculations)
Threats beyond the wall But they play a game of thrones Winter is coming
Eli Dourado (elidourado.com)
Progressives taxes. Can they ever be simple? Can the rain be dry?
Tim Kane (Hudson Institute)