Cheap by comparison with Obama’s stimulus spending plans, the original New Deal remains something about which many people are more enthusiastic than they are about the sort of radical capitalist vision I discussed yesterday. Adam Cohen of the New York Times even wrote a ludicrous editorial recently lamenting that the problem with the New Deal (contrary to what those pesky free-market revisionists say) was that it didn’t spend enough.
Luckily, we have things like this half-hour video in which historian David Kennedy, economist Lee Ohanian, and others take a more sober look at the New Deal and why happy days weren’t there again. (Economist Don Boudreaux suggests taking note of David Kennedy’s twist in the video on Naomi Klein’s paranoia about free-market “shock doctrine” tactics.)
If you prefer NPR, though, my friend Diana Fleischman (who you will hear about again during my “Month of Evolution” next month) notes two recent NPR stories of interest: one about a fairly-libertarian suburb giving tax money back to residents and one about Joe the Plumber becoming an Iraq correspondent for Pajamas Media — the coolest thing the underestimated Joe’s done since recommending the public read libertarian economist Ludwig von Mises, a reminder the populists really do know more than the elite sometimes. (Now if only Pajamas Media responded to my inquiry about whether there’s any way to watch my own most recent appearance without paying them $14 a month — if not, I begin to suspect what their business model is and predict they will have many, many guests on.)
And speaking of conservative online media: tomorrow, a few notes about some of the bloggers at Culture11 (including girlfriend Helen Rittelmeyer), combined with an observation about jazz and race, just in time for Martin Luther King Day.