Image source: UChicago Institute of Politics
For many, the lingering inflationary status was a shocking issue, leading people to believe a recession was on the horizon.
However, experts and the administration have stressed that the country is not in a recession.
On Sunday, economist Paul Krugman joined CNN’s Brian Stelter in saying the country is not in a recession.
What they said
“Are we in a recession and does the term matter?” asked Stelter on CNN.
“No, we aren’t, and no, it doesn’t,” replied Krugman.
“None of the usual criteria that real experts use says we’re in a recession right now,” he explained.
“And what does it matter? You know the state of the economy is what it is.” he explained.
“Jobs are abundant, although maybe the job market is weakening. Inflation is high, although maybe inflation is coming down. What does it matter whether you use the ‘r’ world or not? “
Krugman described the recession definition debate as “vitriolic.”
“I’ve never seen anything as bad as this, the determination of a lot of people to say it’s a recession is above and beyond anything I’ve ever seen,” he added.
How others feel
Paul Krugman indicated that people “want” the “Biden recession” to happen.
“Never mind the fact that you know, it in fact is not a recession in any technical sense,” he added.
Krugman said a number of voters were unaware that people in the country had been “gaining jobs” and that the US employment news was overly negative.
“There’s been a kind of negativity bias in coverage. The press should be giving people – people have their own personal experience. And if you ask people how are you doing, they’re pretty upbeat,” he explained.
“If you ask people ‘how is your financial situation,’ it’s pretty favorable. If you ask them ‘how is the economy,’ oh, it’s terrible. That’s a media failing.”
“Somehow we’re failing to convey the realities of what’s going on to people.”
Attempts to redefining recession
Before the GDP figures were released, members of the Biden administration appeared in media outlets to try to redefine the technical definition of a recession.
Journalist Glen Greenwald criticized their actions in a tweet, saying their efforts showed “a new level of audacity no matter how low your opinion of them already is.”
“Watching them so brazenly re-define how they always used “recession,” and then Paul Krugman adding it doesn’t matter if we’re in one or not (it doesn’t matter for him), all to protect the Biden WH, is a new level of audacity no matter how low your opinion of them already is,” Greenwald tweeted.
Meanwhile, National Economic Council director and Biden White House economic adviser Brian Deese continued to deny that the country was in a recession even after the GDP figures were released last week.
“Well, we’re certainly in a transition, and we are seeing slowing as we all would have expected,” Deese said.
“But I think if you look at the full data and the type of data that NEBR looks at, virtually nothing signals that this period in the second quarter is recessionary.”