Not only did six times as many Fox News viewers think we should prepare for an alien invasion than research climate change, which I mentioned in the Silly Sustainabilty post, but the week before, Paul Krugman postulated that preparing for a fake alien invasion would bring us out of recession.
No, I'm not kidding. Here's the video.
The only difference between the Fox News viewers and Paul Krugman is that Dr. Krugman knows the invasion would be a fake. I'm not so sure about the people who responded to the Fox News poll.
The science fiction site Blastr wrote about it under the headline Nobel Prize-winning economist: We need Watchmen's alien invasion and cast Krugman as Adrian Veidt AKA Ozymandius. The author then posed the question, if Krugman is Veidt, then who is our Rorschach? None of the commenters answered the question in three screens of responses, but one did come up with an appropriate moniker for the strategy, Wag the Dalek. Yes, that's a link to a Krugman blog post; he rather liked the turn of phrase.
Personally, I think that the Daleks would be too nasty a set of aliens. I'd much prefer the intelligent elephant analogues from Footfall, which also happens to be a Niven and Pournelle collaboration. They're just advanced enough to get here, but not so advanced that they are undefeatable. When I first read the book 25 years ago, I thought they were at the exact level for an alien invasion. They'd be a lot better than dealing with the Kzinti!
As if that weren't enough, Dr. Krugman found his ideas about the stimulative effects of government spending in response to disasters both real and imagined being mocked, when he read about people reacting to something he didn't say.
Well, this is interesting. I hear that the not-so-good people at National Review are attacking me over something I said on my Google+ page. Except, I don’t have a Google+ page.
Dave Weigel at Slate has the faux Krugman quote.
Yesterday, a Google+ account belonging to "Paul Krugman" posted this thought experiment about the earthquake.Weigel has more reactions from conservatives who bit on the troll's hook. He also found the hoaxer.
People on twitter might be joking, but in all seriousness, we would see a bigger boost in spending and hence economic growth if the earthquake had done more damage.The reactions were swift after Tim Carney -- who'd just joked that Krugman might think this -- spread the message around on Twitter.
The Google+ account was a hoax created by 2010 college grad Carlos Graterol, to make fun of the "many misguided beliefs that Paul Krugman holds, defends, and espouses on a daily basis."Both Weigel and the snarky Dan Amira at N.Y. Magazine's Daily Intel Blog repeated Professor Krugman's reaction.
This is really cute, not. Apparently some people can’t find enough things to attack in what I actually say, so they’re busy creating fake quotes. And I have enough on my plate without trying to chase all this stuff down.Krugman became even more annoyed in his next post.
So if you see me quoted as saying something really stupid or outrageous, and it didn’t come from the Times or some other verifiable site, you should probably assume it was a fake.
Actually, this thing ties in with what I just wrote about anti-Keynesian switcheroos: the hoaxer was trying to make my (correct) assertions in the past that even useless spending can be expansionary sound as if I revel in disaster. Those who can’t argue rationally, resort to fakery.Yes, Dr. Krugman, I'm sure it will. There is a reason why the opposition to the policies of the current incarnation of the Republican Party is called "the reality-based community," to which the Republican Party as a whole no longer belongs.
Also, the gullibility on display was impressive. All these right-wing hacks knew it must be a genuine quote, because they all knew that I’m a terrible person — based on past distortions!
And I’d be willing to bet that this fake quote will continue to pop up on right-wing blogs and talk radio for years to come.
Above excerpted from For Narb: Paul Krugman and fake alien invasions and Silly Sustainability Saturday for August 27, 2011 on Crazy Eddie's Motie News.