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Glenn Hubbard, Romney Economic Adviser, Supports Discredited View That Austerity Grows The Economy

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Glenn Hubbard, a top economic adviser for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, dean of Columbia Business School, and former top economic adviser for President George W. Bush.
Glenn Hubbard, a top economic adviser for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, dean of Columbia Business School, and former top economic adviser for President George W. Bush.

One of Mitt Romney's top economic advisers is promoting some questionable economic theories.

Glenn Hubbard, a top economic adviser for the Republican presidential nominee, wrote in an op-ed in the Financial Times on Wednesday that slashing government spending would stimulate the economy because it would boost investor confidence. The only problem: That notion is part of a largely discredited economic theory called expansionary austerity.

"Gradual fiscal consolidation may also be stimulative in the short run," Hubbard wrote.

Many respected economists agree that cutting government spending reduces economic growth, not only because government spending itself is part of the economy, but also because laid-off government workers don't have money to spend and killing government jobs can lead to job destruction in the private sector.

It's particularly ironic that Hubbard is advocating cutting government spending, considering his record as a top economic adviser for President George W. Bush. He approved tax cuts for the rich and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which have cost the government trillions of dollars. He also turned a blind eye to the bloating of the risk-taking in the financial and housing sectors that contributed to the financial crisis and recession.

But Hubbard still is one of the most influential economists in the Republican Party. And he's promoting theories that many economists say were discredited nearly a century ago during the Great Depression.

Check out the reaction on Twitter to Hubbard's op-ed below:

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