CNBC host Joe Kernen says that Paul Krugman owes CNBC an apology.
"When someone disparages an entire network because he's asked to defend his views I think the network deserves an apology," Kernen, a host of the CNBC show "Squawk Box," wrote in an e-mail to The Huffington Post on Thursday.
Krugman, the Nobel Prize-winning Princeton economist, wrote on his New York Times blog on Wednesday morning after being interviewed by "Squawk Box" that the interview "was one zombie idea after another" and that "people getting their news from sources like that are probably getting terrible advice about any kind of investment that depends on macroeconomics."
Throughout the CNBC interview, Kernen tried to goad Krugman into naming a level of government spending that would be too high. Kernen also told Krugman that he views him "almost like a unicorn, almost, that you really exist in real life."
Kernen criticized Krugman throughout "Squawk Box" on Thursday morning. "Getting an award, a Squawk Box book award, and signing a book: That does not constitute plugging Krugman's book? That's not good enough?" Kernen told his co-host, the New York Times columnist Andrew Ross Sorkin. "I mean we gave him a celebration of his book, and he turned around and called you a zombie!"
"Called me a zombie?" Sorkin asked.
"No, he didn't, actually," Kernen joked. "I think he called you a soulmate."
Kernen added after the commercial break: "Zombie is the word you use whenever anyone says something that is I guess antithetical to what he feels."
Kernen also criticized HuffPost on Twitter for its coverage of the spat. "I expect a delivery of homemade Greek cookies from Ariana [sic] after all this," he wrote on Twitter on Thursday.
See the Twitter chatter on the Krugman/Kernen dust-up:
Heidi N. Moore