Mythology

Posted by Tory Historian Monday, March 14, 2011

Tory Historian has been catching up with some important reading and found among the unread pile this article by Nigel Lawson (now Lord Lawson of Blaby), former Chancellor of the Exchequer and present-day campaigner against the intellectual terrorism of some climate scientists.

The title, borrowed from a certain well-known if over-hyped film, is Five Myths and a Menace. The five myths Lord Lawson demolishes are:

Myth number one is that economics is a science.

Myth number two: that policy-makers should be guided by the precautionary principle.

Myth number three is the notion, assiduously peddled by ministers in the present government, as it was by their predecessors, that policies to promote the replacement of carbon-based energy by substantially more expensive renewable energy, notably wind power, will bring great benefit to the British economy and in particular create millions of so-called "green jobs".

Myth number four, that Keynesian (or neo-Keynesian) stabilisation policy makes sense.

The last of my five myths, which is causing considerable angst at the present time — as indeed it did when I was Chancellor in the 1980s — and was one of the preoccupations of November's meeting of the G20 finance ministers in Korea.

This is the view that the very substantial current account imbalances that exist in the world are both unnatural and a threat to global economic health.
The article needs to be read in full to find out what Lord Lawson's elegant refutations are and what the menace is. All Tory Historian can say is that the menace will not come as a surprise to anyone who knows Lord Lawson's economic and political views.

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